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Title: An Apology for the True Christian Divinity
Author: Barclay, Robert
Language: English
As this book started as an ASCII text book there are no pictures available.

*** Start of this LibraryBlog Digital Book "An Apology for the True Christian Divinity" ***

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Digital Library, Google and the University of Michigan

  True Christian Divinity,

  Of the PEOPLE called

  Written in LATIN and ENGLISH
  And since translated into HIGH DUTCH, LOW DUTCH, FRENCH,
  and SPANISH, for the Information of Strangers.


  and sold by the Booksellers of LONDON and WESTMINSTER.


    To Charles II King of Great Britain.
    _R. B._ Unto the Friendly Reader wisheth Salvation.
    THESES THEOLOGICÆ. To the Clergy.  i.

  PROPOSITION I.                        1
    Concerning the true FOUNDATION OF KNOWLEDGE.

  PROPOSITION II.                       4

  PROPOSITION III.                     48
    Concerning the SCRIPTURES.

  PROPOSITION IV.                      73
    Concerning the Condition of MAN in the FALL.

  PROPOSITIONS V. & VI.                86
    Concerning the SAVING and SPIRITUAL LIGHT, wherewith every Man is

  PROPOSITION VII.                    164
    Concerning JUSTIFICATION.

  PROPOSITION VIII.                   204
    Concerning PERFECTION.

  PROPOSITION IX.                     224
    Concerning PERSEVERANCE, and the Possibility of FALLING from GRACE.

  PROPOSITION X.                      231
    Concerning the MINISTRY.

  PROPOSITION XI.                     296
    Concerning WORSHIP.

  PROPOSITION XII.                    355
    Concerning BAPTISM.

  PROPOSITION XIII.                   388
    Concerning the COMMUNION, or PARTICIPATION of the BODY and BLOOD of

  PROPOSITION XIV.                    425
    Concerning the POWER of the CIVIL MAGISTRATE in Matters Purely
      RELIGIOUS, and pertaining to the CONSCIENCE.

  PROPOSITION XV.                     449
    Concerning SALUTATIONS and RECREATIONS _&c._

  THE CONCLUSION.                     502

    _A TABLE of the AUTHORS cited in this BOOK._
    _A TABLE of the CHIEF THINGS._








And the _Dominions_ thereunto belonging:


_A Servant of JESUS CHRIST, called of GOD to the Dispensation of the
    _Gospel_ now again revealed, and, after a long and dark Night of
    _Apostasy_, commanded to be preached to all NATIONS, _wisheth
    Health and Salvation.

As the Condition of Kings and Princes puts Them in a Station more
obvious to the View and Observation of the World than that of other
Men, of whom, as _Cicero_ observes, neither any Word or Action can be
obscure; so are those Kings, during whose Appearance upon the Stage of
this World it pleaseth the GREAT KING of _Kings_ singularly to make
known unto Men the wonderful Steps of His _unsearchable Providence_,
more signally observed, and their Lives and Actions more diligently
remarked, and enquired into by Posterity; especially if those Things be
such as not only relate to the outward Transactions of this World, but
also are signalized by the Manifestation or Revelation of the Knowledge
of God in Matters spiritual and religious. These are the Things that
rendered the Lives of _Cyrus_, _Augustus Cæsar_, and _Constantine_ the
Great, in former Times, and of _Charles_ the Fifth, and some other
modern Princes in these last Ages, so considerable.

But among all the Transactions which it hath pleased God to permit,
for the Glory of His Power, and the Manifestation of His Wisdom
and Providence, no Age furnisheth us with Things so _strange_ and
_marvellous_, whether with Respect to Matters civil or religious, as
these that have fallen out within the Compass of Thy Time; who, though
Thou be not yet arrived at the Fiftieth Year of thy Age, hast yet
been a Witness of stranger Things than many Ages before produced. So
that whether we respect those various Troubles wherein Thou foundest
Thyself engaged while scarce got out of Thy Infancy; the many different
Afflictions, wherewith Men of Thy Circumstances are often unacquainted;
the strange and unparalleled Fortune that befel Thy Father; Thy own
narrow Escape, and Banishment following thereupon, with the great
Improbability of Thy ever returning, at least without very much Pains
and tedious Combatings; or finally, the Incapacity Thou wert under to
accomplish such a Design; considering the Strength of those that had
possessed themselves of Thy Throne, and the Terror they had inflicted
upon foreign States; and yet that, after all this, Thou shouldest be
restored without Stroke of Sword, the Help or Assistance of foreign
States, or the Contrivance and Work of human Policy; all these do
sufficiently declare that it is the _Lord’s Doing_, which, as it is
marvellous in our Eyes, so it will justly be a Matter of Wonder and
Astonishment to Generations to come; and may sufficiently serve, if
rightly observed, to confute and confound that _Atheism_ wherewith this
Age doth so much abound.

As the Vindication of the _Liberty of Conscience_ (which Thy Father, by
giving Way to the importunate Clamours of the _Clergy_, the Answering
and Fulfilling of whose unrighteous Wills has often proved hurtful
and pernicious to Princes, sought in some Part to restrain) was a
great Occasion of those Troubles and Revolutions; so the Pretence of
_Conscience_ was that which carried it on, and brought it to that Pitch
it came to. And though no Doubt some that were engaged in that Work
designed good Things, at least in the Beginning, albeit always wrong
in the Manner they took to accomplish it, _viz._ by carnal Weapons;
yet so soon as they had tasted the Sweets of the Possessions of them
they had turned out, they quickly began to do those Things themselves
for which they had accused others. For their Hands were found full of
Oppression, and _they hated the Reproof of Instruction, which is the
Way of Life_; and they evilly intreated the Messengers of the Lord, and
caused his Prophets to be beaten and imprisoned, and persecuted his
People, whom he had called and gathered out from among them, whom he
had made to beat their _Swords into Plow-shares, and their Spears into
Pruning-hooks_, and not to learn _carnal War_ any more: But he raised
them up, and armed them with _spiritual Weapons_, even with his own
Spirit and Power, whereby they testified in the Streets and High-ways,
and publick Markets and Synagogues, against the _Pride_, _Vanity_,
_Lusts_, and _Hypocrisy_ of that Generation, who were righteous in
their own Eyes; though often cruelly intreated therefore: And they
faithfully prophesied and foretold them of their judgment and Downfal,
which came upon them; as by several Warnings and Epistles, delivered
to _Oliver_ and _Richard Cromwell_, the _Parliament_, and other then
_Powers_, yet upon Record, doth appear.

And after it pleased God to restore Thee, what Oppressions, what
Banishments, and evil Intreatings they have met with, by Men pretending
Thy Authority, and cloaking their Mischief with Thy Name, is known to
most Men in this Island; especially in _England_, where there is scarce
a Prison that hath not been filled with them, nor a Judge before whom
they have not been haled; _though they could never yet be found guilty_
of any Thing that might deserve that Usage. Therefore the Sense of
their Innocency did no Doubt greatly contribute to move thee, three
Years ago, to cause some Hundreds of them to be set at Liberty: For
indeed their Sufferings are singular, and obviously distinguishable
from all the rest of such as live under Thee in these two Respects.

First, _In that among all the Plots contrived by others against Thee,
since Thy Return into _Britain_, there was never any, owned of that
People, found or known to be guilty, _(though many of them have been
taken and imprisoned upon such Kind of Jealousies)_ but were always
found innocent and harmless, _as became the Followers of Christ_ not
coveting after, nor contending for the Kingdoms of this World, but
subject to every Ordinance of Man, for Conscience Sake_.

Secondly, _In that in the hottest Times of Persecution, and the most
violent Prosecution of those Laws made against Meetings, _being
clothed with Innocency_, they have boldly stood to their Testimony for
God, without creeping into Holes or Corners, or once hiding themselves,
_as all other Dissenters have done_; but daily met, according to their
Custom, in the publick Places appointed for that End; _so that none
of Thy Officers can say of them_, That they have surprized them in
a Corner, overtaken them in a private Conventicle, or catched them
lurking in their secret Chambers; nor needed they to send out Spies to
get them, whom they were sure daily to find in their open Assemblies,
testifying for God and His Truth_.

By which those who have an Eye to see, may observe their Christian
Patience and Courage, Constancy and Suffering joined in one, more than
in any other People that differ from them, or oppose them. And yet, in
the midst of those Troubles, Thou canst bear Witness, that as on the
one Part, they never sought to detract from Thee, or to render Thee
and Thy Government odious to the People, by nameless and scandalous
Pamphlets and Libels; so on the other Hand they have not spared to
admonish, exhort, and reprove Thee; and have faithfully discharged
their Consciences towards Thee, without flattering Words, as ever the
true Prophets in ancient Times used to do to those Kings and Princes,
under whose Power Violence and Oppression was acted.

And although it is evident by Experience to be most agreeable both
to divine Truth, and human Policy, to allow every one to serve God
according to their Consciences; nevertheless those other Sects, who
for the most Part durst not peep out in the Times of Persecution,
while these innocent People stood bold and faithful, do now combine
in a joint Confederacy, notwithstanding all the Former Janglings and
Contentions among themselves, to render us odious; seeking unjustly to
wrest our Doctrine and Words, as if they were both inconsistent with
Christianity and civil Society; so that to effectuate this their Work
of Malice against us, they have not been ashamed to take the Help, and
commend the Labours, of some invidious _Socinians_ against us. So do
_Herod_ and _Pontius Pilate_ agree to crucify Christ.

But our Practice, known to Thee by good Experience to be more
consistent with Christianity and civil Society, and the Peace and
Welfare of this Island, than that of those who thus accuse us, doth
sufficiently guard us against this Calumny; and we may indeed appeal to
the Testimony of Thy Conscience, as a Witness for us in the Face of the

These Things moved me to present the World with a brief, but true
Account of this People’s Principles, in some short _Theological
Propositions_; which, according to the Will of God, proving successful,
beyond my Expectation, to the Satisfaction of several, and to the
exciting in many a Desire of being farther informed concerning us, as
being every where evil spoken of; and likewise meeting with publick
Opposition by some, as such will always do, so long as the _Devil rules
in the Children of Disobedience_; I was thereby farther engaged, in
the Liberty of the Lord, to present to the World this _Apology_ of the
Truth held by those People: Which, because of Thy Interest in them,
and theirs in Thee, as having first appeared, and mostly increased, in
these Nations under Thy Rule, I make bold to present unto Thee.

Thou knowest, and hast experienced _their Faithfulness towards their
God, their Patience in Suffering, their Peaceableness towards the King,
their Honesty, Plainness and Integrity in their faithful Warnings and
Testimonies to Thee_; and if Thou wilt allow Thyself so much Time as to
read this, Thou mayest find _how consonant their Principles are both to
Scripture, Truth, and right Reason_. The Simplicity of their Behaviour,
the Generality of their Condition, as being poor Men and illiterate;
the Manner of their Procedure, being without the Wisdom and Policy of
this World, hath made many conclude them Fools and Mad-men, and neglect
them, as not being capable of Reason. But though it be to them as their
Crown, thus to be esteemed of the Wise, the Great, and Learned of this
World, and tho’ they rejoice to be accounted Fools for Christ’s Sake;
yet of late some, even such who in the World’s Account are esteemed
both Wise and Learned, begin to judge otherwise of them, and find, that
they hold forth Things very agreeable both to Scripture, Reason, and
true Learning.

As it is inconsistent with the Truth I bear, so it is far from me to
use this Epistle as an _Engine_ to _flatter_ Thee, the usual Design of
such Works; and therefore I can neither Dedicate it to Thee, nor crave
Thy Patronage, as if thereby I might have more Confidence to present
it to the World, or be more hopeful of its Success. To God alone I
owe what I have, and that more immediately in Matters spiritual; and
therefore to Him alone, and to the Service of His Truth, I dedicate
whatever Work He brings forth in me; to whom only the Praise and Honour
appertain, whose Truth needs not the Patronage of worldly Princes; His
Arm and Power being that alone by which it is propagated, established
and confirmed. But I found it upon my Spirit to take Occasion to
present this Book unto Thee; that as Thou hast been often warned by
several of that People, who are Inhabitants of _England_; so Thou
may’st not want a seasonable Advertisement from a Member of Thy
ancient Kingdom of _Scotland_; and that Thou may’st know, which I hope
Thou wilt have no Reason to be troubled at, that God is raising up
and increasing that People in this Nation. And the Nations shall also
hereby know, that the _Truth_ we profess is not a Work of Darkness, nor
propagated by Stealth; and that we are not ashamed of the _Gospel of
Christ_, because we know it to be _the Power of God unto Salvation_;
and that we are no Ways so inconsistent with Government, nor such
Disturbers of the Peace, as our Enemies, by traducing us, have sought
to make the World believe we are: For which to Thee I dare appeal, as a
Witness of our Peaceableness and Christian Patience.

Generations to come shall not more admire that singular Step of Divine
Providence, in Restoring Thee to Thy Throne, without outward Bloodshed,
than they shall admire the Increase and Progress of this _Truth_,
without all outward Help, and against so great Opposition; which shall
be none of the least Things rendering Thy _Memory_ remarkable. God hath
done great Things for Thee; He hath sufficiently shewn Thee, that it
is _by Him Princes rule_, and that _He can pull down and set up at His
Pleasure_. He hath often faithfully warned Thee by His Servants, since
He restored Thee to Thy _Royal Dignity_, that Thy Heart might not wax
wanton against Him, to forget His Mercies and Providences towards Thee;
whereby He might permit Thee to be soothed up, and lulled asleep in Thy
Sins, by the Flattering of _Court-parasites_, who, by their Fawning,
are the _Ruin_ of many _Princes_.

There is no King in the World, who can so experimentally testify
of God’s Providence and Goodness; neither is there any, who rules
so many free People, so many true Christians: Which Thing renders
Thy Government more Honourable, Thyself more Considerable, than the
Accession of many Nations, filled with slavish and superstitious Souls.

Thou hast tasted of Prosperity and Adversity; Thou knowest what it is
to be banished Thy native Country, to be over-ruled, as well as to
rule, and sit upon the Throne; and being _oppressed_, Thou hast Reason
to know how _hateful_ the _Oppressor_ is both to God and Man: If after
all these Warnings and Advertisements, Thou dost not turn unto the
Lord with all Thy Heart, but forget Him, who remembered Thee in Thy
Distress, and give up Thyself to follow Lust and Vanity; surely great
will be Thy Condemnation.

Against which Snare, as well as the Temptation of those, that may or do
feed Thee, and prompt Thee to Evil, the most excellent and prevalent
Remedy will be, to apply Thyself to that _Light of Christ_, which
_shineth in Thy Conscience_, which neither can, nor will flatter Thee,
nor suffer Thee to be at Ease in Thy Sins; but doth and will deal
plainly and faithfully with Thee, as those that are Followers thereof
have also done.

_GOD Almighty, who hath so signally hitherto visited Thee with His
    Love, so touch and reach Thy Heart, ere the Day of Thy Visitation
    be expired, that Thou mayest effectually Turn to Him, so as to
    improve Thy Place and Station for His Name._ So wisheth, so prayeth,

                                        Thy Faithful Friend and Subject,

                                                       ROBERT BARCLAY.

_From _Ury_, in my native Country of _Scotland_, the 25th of the Month
    called _November_, in the Year_ MDCLXXV.

                                                                 _R. B._

_R. B._ Unto the Friendly Reader wisheth Salvation.

_Forasmuch as that, which above all Things I propose to myself, is
to declare and defend the _Truth_; for the Service whereof I have
given up and devoted myself, and all that is mine; therefore there is
nothing which for its Sake (by the Help and Assistance of God) I may
not attempt. And in this Confidence, I did sometime ago publish certain
Propositions of Divinity, comprehending briefly the chief Principles
and Doctrines of _Truth_; which appearing not unprofitable to some, and
being beyond my Expectation well received by many, though also opposed
by some envious Ones, did so far prevail, as in some Part to remove
that false and monstrous Opinion, which lying Fame, and the Malice of
our Adversaries, had implanted in the Minds of some, concerning us and
our Doctrines._

_In this Respect it seemed to me not fit to spare my Pains and Labour;
and therefore, being actuated by the same Divine Spirit, and the
like Intention of propagating the Truth, by which I published the
Propositions themselves, I judged it meet to explain them somewhat more
largely at this Time, and defend them by certain Arguments._

_Perhaps my Method of Writing may seem not only different, but even
contrary, to that which is commonly used by the Men called _Divines_,
with which I am not concerned: Inasmuch as I confess myself to
be not only no Imitator and Admirer of the _School-men_, but an
Opposer and Despiser of them as such, by whose Labour I judge the
_Christian Religion_ to be so far from being bettered, that it is
rather destroyed. Neither have I sought to accommodate this my Work
to itching Ears, who desire rather to comprehend in their Heads the
sublime Notions of Truth, than to embrace it in their Hearts: For
what I have written comes more from my Heart than from my Head; what
I have heard with the Ears of my Soul, and seen with my inward Eyes,
and my Hands have handled of the _Word of Life_, and what hath been
inwardly manifested to me of the Things of God, that do I declare; not
so much regarding the Eloquence and Excellency of Speech, as desiring
to demonstrate the Efficacy and Operation of Truth; and if I err
sometimes in the former, it is no great Matter; for I act not here the
_Grammarian_, or the _Orator_, but the _Christian_; and therefore in
this I have followed the certain Rule of the _Divine Light_, and of
the_ Holy Scriptures.

_And to make an End; What I have written, is written not to feed
the _Wisdom_ and _Knowledge_, or rather _vain Pride of this World_,
but to starve and oppose it, as the little Preface prefixed to the
_Propositions_ doth shew; which, with the Title of them, is as


Unto whose Hands these may come;

To the DOCTORS, PROFESSORS, and STUDENTS of Divinity, in the
    Universities and Schools of _Great Britain_, whether Prelatical,
    Presbyterian, or any other;


A Servant of the LORD GOD, and one of those who in Derision
    are called QUAKERS, wisheth unfeigned Repentance, unto the
    Acknowledgment of the Truth.


_Unto You these following Propositions are offered; in which, they
being read and considered in the Fear of the Lord, you may perceive
that simple, naked Truth, which Man by his Wisdom hath rendered so
obscure and mysterious, that the World is even burthened with the
great and voluminous Tractates which are made about it, and by their
vain Jangling and Commentaries, by which it is rendered a Hundred-fold
more dark and intricate than of itself it is: Which great Learning
(so accounted of) to wit, your _School-divinity_ (which taketh up
almost a Man’s whole Life-time to learn) brings not a Whit nearer
to God, neither makes any Man less wicked, or more righteous than
he was. Therefore hath God laid aside the Wise and Learned, and the
Disputers of this World; and hath chosen a few despicable and unlearned
Instruments (as to Letter-learning) as he did Fishermen of old, to
publish his pure and naked _Truth_, and to free it of those Mists and
Fogs wherewith the _Clergy_ hath clouded it, that the People might
admire and maintain them. And among several others, whom God hath
chosen to make known these Things (seeing I also have received, in
Measure, Grace to be a Dispenser of the same Gospel) it seemed good
unto me, according to my Duty, to offer unto you these _Propositions_;
which though short, yet are weighty, comprehending much, and declaring
what the true Ground of Knowledge is, even of that Knowledge which
leads to _Life Eternal_; which is here witnessed of, and the Testimony
thereof left unto the _Light of Christ_ in all your Consciences._


                                                                 _R. B._

The First Proposition.

Concerning the true FOUNDATION of KNOWLEDGE.

Seeing the Height of all Happiness is placed in the true Knowledge of
God ([1]_This is Life eternal, to know thee the only true God, and
Jesus Christ whom thou hast sent_) the true and right understanding of
this Foundation and Ground of Knowledge is that which is most necessary
to be known and believed in the first Place.

[1] John 17. 3.

The Second Proposition.


Seeing [2]_no Man knoweth the Father but the Son, and he to whom the
Son revealeth him_; and seeing _the Revelation of the Son is in and
by the Spirit_; therefore the Testimony of the Spirit is that alone
by which the true Knowledge of God hath been, is, and can be only
revealed; who as, by the moving of his own Spirit, he converted the
_Chaos_ of this World into that wonderful Order wherein it was in the
Beginning, and created Man a living Soul, to rule and govern it, so
by the Revelation of the same Spirit he hath manifested himself all
along unto the Sons of Men, both Patriarchs, Prophets and Apostles;
which Revelations of God by the Spirit, whether by outward Voices and
Appearances, Dreams, or inward _objective Manifestations in the Heart_,
were of old the _formal Object_ of their Faith, and remain yet so to
be; _since the Object of the Saints’ Faith is the same in all Ages_,
though set forth under divers Administrations. Moreover, these divine
inward Revelations, which we make absolutely necessary for the building
up of true Faith, neither do nor can ever contradict the outward
Testimony of the Scriptures, or right and sound Reason. Yet from hence
it will not follow, that these divine Revelations are to be subjected
to the Examination, either of the outward Testimony of the Scriptures,
or of the natural Reason of Man, as to a more noble or certain Rule or
Touchstone: For this divine Revelation, and inward Illumination, is
that which is evident and clear of itself; forcing, by its own Evidence
and Clearness, the well-disposed Understanding to assent, irresistibly
moving the same thereunto; even as the common Principles of natural
_Truths_ move and incline the Mind to a natural Assent: As, That _the
Whole is greater than its Part_; That _two contradictory Sayings cannot
be both true, nor both false_: Which is also manifest, according to
our Adversaries Principle, who (supposing the Possibility of inward
divine Revelations) will nevertheless confess with us, that neither
Scripture nor sound Reason will contradict it: And yet it will not
follow, according to them, that the Scripture, or sound Reason, should
be subjected to the Examination of the divine Revelations in the Heart.

[2] Mat. 11. 27.

The Third Proposition.

Concerning the SCRIPTURES.

From these Revelations of the Spirit of God to the Saints, have
proceeded the Scriptures of Truth, which contain, 1. A faithful
historical Account of the Actings of God’s People in divers Ages,
with many singular and remarkable Providences attending them. 2. A
prophetical Account of several Things, whereof some are already past,
and some yet to come. 3. A full and ample Account of all the chief
Principles of the Doctrine of Christ, held forth in divers precious
Declarations, Exhortations and Sentences, which, by the moving of God’s
Spirit, were at several Times, and upon sundry Occasions, spoken and
written unto some Churches and their Pastors: Nevertheless, because
they are only a Declaration of the _Fountain_, and not the _Fountain_
itself, therefore they are not to be esteemed the principal Ground of
all Truth and Knowledge, nor yet the _adequate primary Rule_ of _Faith
and Manners_. Nevertheless, as that which giveth a true and faithful
Testimony of the first Foundation, they are and may be esteemed a
_secondary Rule, subordinate_ to the _Spirit_, from which they have all
their Excellency and Certainty; for as by the inward Testimony of the
Spirit we do alone truly know them; so they testify, that [3]the Spirit
is that Guide by which the Saints are led into _all Truth_: Therefore,
according to the Scriptures, the Spirit is the first and principal
Leader. And seeing we do therefore receive and believe the Scriptures,
because they proceeded from the Spirit; therefore also the Spirit is
more originally and principally the Rule, according to that received
Maxim in the Schools, _Propter quod unumquodque est tale, illud ipsum
est magis tale_. Englished thus: _That for which a Thing is such, that
Thing itself is more such_.

[3] John 16. 13.; Rom. 8. 14.

The Fourth Proposition.

Concerning the Condition of MAN in the FALL.

[4]All _Adam_’s Posterity (or Mankind) both _Jews_ and _Gentiles_,
as to the first _Adam_ or earthly Man is fallen, degenerated, and
dead, deprived of the Sensation or Feeling of this inward Testimony
or _Seed of God_, and is subject unto the Power, Nature, and Seed of
the Serpent, which he sows in Men’s Hearts, while they abide in this
natural and corrupted State; from whence it comes, that not their Words
and Deeds only, but all their Imaginations are evil perpetually in
the Sight of God, as proceeding from this depraved and wicked Seed.
Man therefore, as he is in this State, can know nothing aright; yea,
his Thoughts and Conceptions concerning God and Things spiritual,
until he be disjoined from this evil Seed, and united to the _Divine
Light_, are unprofitable both to himself and others: Hence are rejected
the _Socinian_ and _Pelagian_ Errors, in exalting a natural Light;
as also of the _Papists_, and most _Protestants_, who affirm, _That
Man, without the true Grace of God, may be a true Minister of the
Gospel_. Nevertheless, this Seed is not imputed to Infants, until by
Transgression they actually join themselves therewith; [5]for they are
by Nature the Children of Wrath, who walk according to the Power of the
Prince of the Air.

[4] Rom. 5. 12. 15.

[5] Eph. 2. 1.

The Fifth and Sixth Propositions.

Concerning the Universal Redemption by Christ, and also the Saving and
    Spiritual Light, wherewith every Man is enlightened.

The Fifth Proposition.

[6]_God, _out of his infinite Love_, who delighteth not in the
Death of a Sinner, but that all should live and be saved, hath so
loved the World, that he hath given his only Son a Light, that
whosoever believeth in him should be saved; who enlighteneth every
Man that cometh into the World, and maketh manifest all Things that
are reproveable, and teacheth all Temperance, Righteousness, and
Godliness_: And this Light enlighteneth the Hearts of all in a Day,[7]
in order to Salvation, if not resisted: Nor is it less universal than
the Seed of Sin; being the Purchase of his Death, who _tasted Death for
every Man; for [8]as in _Adam_ all die, even so in _Christ_ shall all
be made alive_.

[6] Ezek. 18. 23.; Isa. 49. 6.; John 3. 16. & 1. 9.; Tit. 2. 11.; Eph.
5. 13.; Heb. 2. 9.

[7] _Pro Tempore_, for a Time.

[8] 1 Cor. 15. 22.

The Sixth Proposition.

According to which Principle (or _Hypothesis_) all the Objections
against the Universality of Christ’s Death are easily solved; neither
is it needful to recur to the Ministry of Angels, and those other
miraculous Means, which, they say, God makes use of, to manifest the
Doctrine and History of Christ’s Passion, unto such who (living in
those Places of the World where the outward Preaching of the Gospel
is unknown) have well improved the first and common Grace; for hence
it well follows, that as some of the old Philosophers might have been
saved, so also may now some (who by Providence are cast into those
remote Parts of the World, where the Knowledge of the History is
wanting) be made Partakers of the Divine Mystery, if they receive and
resist not that Grace, [9]a _Manifestation whereof is given to every
Man to profit withal_. This certain Doctrine then being received (_to
wit_) that there is an Evangelical and Saving Light and Grace in all,
the Universality of the Love and Mercy of God towards Mankind (both
in the Death of his beloved Son, the Lord Jesus Christ, and in the
Manifestation of the Light in the Heart) is established and confirmed
against all the Objections of such as deny it. Therefore [10]_Christ
hath tasted Death for every Man_; not only _for all Kinds of Men_, as
some vainly talk, but _for every one, of all Kinds_; the Benefit of
whose Offering is not only extended to such, who have the distinct
outward Knowledge of his Death and Sufferings, as the same is declared
in the Scriptures, but even unto those who are necessarily excluded
from the Benefit of this Knowledge by some inevitable Accident; which
Knowledge we willingly confess to be very profitable and comfortable,
but not absolutely needful unto such, from whom God himself hath
with-held it; yet they may be made Partakers of the Mystery of his
Death (though ignorant of the History) if they suffer his Seed and
Light (enlightening their Hearts) to take Place (in which Light,
Communion with the Father and Son is enjoyed) so as of wicked Men to
become holy, and Lovers of that Power, by whose inward and secret
Touches they feel themselves turned from the Evil to the Good, and
learn _to do to others as they would be done by_; in which Christ
himself affirms all to be included. As they then have falsely and
erroneously taught, who have denied Christ to have died for all Men;
so neither have they sufficiently taught the Truth, who affirming him
to have died for all, have added the absolute Necessity of the outward
Knowledge thereof, in order to the obtaining its saving Effect; among
whom the _Remonstrants_ of _Holland_ have been chiefly wanting, and
many other Assertors of _Universal Redemption_, in that they have not
placed the Extent of this Salvation in that Divine and Evangelical
Principle of Light and Life, wherewith Christ hath enlightened every
Man that comes into the World, which is excellently and evidently held
forth in these Scriptures, _Gen._ vi. 3. _Deut._ xxx. 14. _John_ i. 7,
8, 9. _Rom._ x. 8. _Tit._ ii. 11.

[9] 1 Cor. 12. 7.

[10] Heb. 2. 9.

The Seventh Proposition.


As many as resist not this Light, but receive the same, in them is
produced an holy, pure, and spiritual Birth, bringing forth Holiness,
Righteousness, Purity, and all these other blessed Fruits which are
acceptable to God; by which Holy Birth (to wit, _Jesus Christ_ formed
within us, and Working his Works in us) as we are sanctified, so are
we justified in the Sight of God, according to the Apostle’s Words,
[11]_But ye are washed, but ye are sanctified, but ye are justified, in
the Name of the Lord Jesus, and by the Spirit of our God_. Therefore
it is not by our Works wrought in our Will, nor yet by good Works,
considered as of themselves, but by Christ, who is both the Gift and
the Giver, and the Cause producing the Effects in us; who, as he
hath reconciled us while we were Enemies, doth also in his Wisdom
save us, and justify us after this Manner, as saith the same Apostle
elsewhere, [12]_According to his Mercy he saved us, by the washing of
Regeneration, and the renewing of the Holy Ghost_.

[11] 1 Cor. 6. 11.

[12] Tit. 3. 5.

The Eighth Proposition.

Concerning PERFECTION.

[13]In whom this holy and pure Birth is fully brought forth, the Body
of Death and Sin comes to be crucified and removed, and their Hearts
united and subjected unto the Truth, so as not to obey any Suggestion
or Temptation of the Evil One, but to be free from actual sinning,
and transgressing of the Law of God, and in that Respect perfect. Yet
doth this Perfection still admit of a Growth; and there remaineth a
Possibility of sinning, where the Mind doth not most diligently and
watchfully attend unto the Lord.

[13] Rom. 6. 14.; _Id._ 8. 13.; _Id._ 6. 2. 18.; 1 John 3. 6.

The Ninth Proposition.

Concerning PERSEVERANCE, and the Possibility of FALLING from GRACE.

Although this Gift, and inward Grace of God, be sufficient to work out
Salvation, yet in those in whom it is resisted it both may and doth
become their Condemnation. Moreover, in whom it hath wrought in Part,
to purify and sanctify them, in order to their further Perfection, by
Disobedience such may fall from it, and turn it to Wantonness, making
Shipwreck of Faith; and [14]_after having tasted of the Heavenly Gift,
and been made Partakers of the Holy Ghost, again fall away_. Yet such
an Increase and Stability in the Truth may in this Life be attained,
from which there cannot be a total Apostasy.

[14] 1 Tim. 1. 6.; Heb. 6. 4, 5, 6.

The Tenth Proposition.

Concerning the MINISTRY.

As by this Gift, or Light of God, all true Knowledge in Things
Spiritual is received and revealed; so by the same, as it is manifested
and received in the Heart, by the Strength and Power thereof, every
true Minister of the Gospel is ordained, prepared and supplied in the
Work of the Ministry: And by the leading, moving, and drawing hereof,
ought every Evangelist and Christian Pastor to be led and ordered in
his Labour and Work of the Gospel, both as to the Place where, as
to the Persons to whom, and as to the Times when he is to minister.
Moreover, those who have this Authority may and ought to preach the
Gospel, though without human Commission or Literature; as on the
other Hand, those who want the Authority of this Divine Gift, however
learned or authorized by the Commissions of Men and Churches, are to
be esteemed but as Deceivers, and not true _Ministers of the Gospel_.
Also, who have received this holy and unspotted Gift, [15]_as they
have freely received, so are they freely to give_, without Hire or
Bargaining, far less to use it as a Trade to get Money by it: Yet if
God hath called any from their Employments, or Trades, by which they
acquire their Livelihood, it may be lawful for such (according to
the Liberty which they feel given them in the Lord) to receive such
Temporals (to wit, what may be needful to them for Meat and Clothing)
as are freely given them by those to whom they have communicated

[15] Mat. 10. 8.

The Eleventh Proposition.

Concerning WORSHIP.

All true and acceptable Worship to God is offered in the _inward_ and
_immediate_ moving and drawing of his own Spirit, which is neither
limited to Places, Times, or Persons; for though we be to worship
him always, in that we are to fear before him, yet as to the outward
Signification thereof in Prayers, Praises, or Preachings, we ought
not to do it where and when we will, but where and when we are moved
thereunto by the secret Inspirations of his Spirit in our Hearts,
which God heareth and accepteth of, and is never wanting to move us
thereunto, when Need is, of which he himself is the alone proper Judge.
[16]All other Worship then, both Praises, Prayers and Preachings, which
Man sets about in his own Will, and at his own Appointment, which he
can both begin and end at his Pleasure, do or leave undone as himself
sees meet, whether they be a prescribed Form, as a Liturgy, or Prayers
conceived extemporarily, by the natural Strength and Faculty of the
Mind, they are all but Superstitions, Will-worship, and abominable
Idolatry in the Sight of God; which are to be denied, rejected, and
separated from, in this Day of his spiritual Arising: [17]However it
might have pleased him (who winked at the Times of Ignorance, with
Respect to the Simplicity and Integrity of some, and of his own
innocent Seed, which lay as it were buried in the Hearts of Men, under
the Mass of Superstition) to blow upon the dead and dry Bones, and to
raise some Breathings, and answer them, and that until the Day should
more clearly dawn and break forth.

[16] Ezek. 13., Mat. 10. 20., Acts 2. 4. & 18. 5.

[17] John 3. 6. & 4. 21., Jude 19., Acts 17. 23.

The Twelfth Proposition.

Concerning BAPTISM.

As there is [18]_one Lord_ and _one Faith_, so there is _one Baptism;
which is not the putting away the Filth of the Flesh, but the Answer of
a good Conscience before God, by the Resurrection of Jesus Christ_. And
this Baptism is a pure and spiritual Thing, to wit, the _Baptism_ of
the _Spirit_ and _Fire_, by which we are _buried with him_, that being
washed and purged from our Sins, we may _walk in Newness of Life_;
[19]of which the Baptism of _John_ was a Figure, which was commanded
for a Time, and not to continue for ever. As to the Baptism of Infants,
it is a mere human Tradition, for which neither Precept nor Practice is
to be found in all the Scripture.

[18] Eph. 4. 5.; 1 Pet. 3. 21.; Rom. 6. 4.; Gal. 3. 27.; Col. 2. 12.;
John 3. 30.

[19] 1 Cor. 1. 17.

The Thirteenth Proposition.

Concerning the COMMUNION, or PARTICIPATION of the BODY and BLOOD of

The [20]_Communion_ of the Body and Blood of Christ is _inward_ and
_spiritual_, which is the Participation of his Flesh and Blood, by
which the _inward Man_ is [21]daily nourished in the Hearts of those in
whom Christ dwells; of which Things the _breaking of Bread_ by Christ
with his Disciples was a _Figure_, which they even used in the Church
for a Time, who had received the Substance, for the Cause of the Weak;
even as [22]_abstaining from Things strangled, and from Blood_; the
[23]_washing one another’s Feet_, and the [24]_anointing of the Sick
with Oil_; all which are commanded with no less Authority and Solemnity
than the Former; yet seeing they are but the Shadows of better Things,
they cease in such as have obtained the Substance.

[20] 1 Cor. 10. 16, 17.

[21] John 6. 32, 33, 35.; 1 Cor. 5. 8.

[22] Acts 15. 20.

[23] John 13. 14.

[24] James 5. 14.

The Fourteenth Proposition.

Concerning the POWER of the CIVIL MAGISTRATE in Matters purely
    RELIGIOUS, and pertaining to the CONSCIENCE.

Since God hath assumed to himself the Power and Dominion of the
Conscience, who alone can rightly instruct and govern it therefore
[25]it is not lawful for any whatsoever, by Virtue of any Authority or
Principality they bear in the Government of this World, to force the
Consciences of others; and therefore all Killing, Banishing, Fining,
Imprisoning, and other such Things, which Men are afflicted with, for
the alone Exercise of their Conscience, or Difference in Worship or
Opinion, proceedeth from the Spirit of _Cain_, the Murderer, and is
contrary to the Truth; provided always, that no Man, under the Pretence
of Conscience, prejudice his Neighbour in his Life or Estate; or do any
Thing destructive to, or inconsistent with Human Society; in which Case
the Law is for the Transgressor, and Justice to be administered upon
all, without Respect of Persons.

[25] Luke 9. 55, 56.; Mat. 7. 12. 29.; Tit. 3. 10.

The Fifteenth Proposition.


[26]Seeing the chief End of all Religion is to redeem Man from the
Spirit and vain Conversation of this World, and to lead into inward
Communion with God, before whom, if we fear always, we are accounted
happy; therefore all the vain Customs and Habits thereof, both in
Word and Deed, are to be rejected and forsaken by those who come to
this Fear; such as the taking off the Hat to a Man, the Bowings and
Cringings of the Body, and such other Salutations of that Kind, with
all the foolish and superstitious Formalities attending them; all which
Man has invented in his degenerate State, to feed his Pride in the vain
Pomp and Glory of this World; as also the unprofitable Plays, frivolous
Recreations, Sportings and Gamings, which are invented to pass away
the precious Time, and divert the Mind from the Witness of God in the
Heart, and from the living Sense of his Fear, and from that evangelical
Spirit wherewith Christians ought to be leavened, and which leads into
Sobriety, Gravity, and Godly Fear; in which, as we abide, the Blessing
of the Lord is felt to attend us in those Actions in which we are
necessarily engaged, in order to the taking Care for the Sustenance of
the outward Man.

[26] Eph. 5. 11.; 1 Pet. 1. 14.; John 5. 44.; Jer. 10. 3.; Acts 10.
26.; Mat. 15. 13.; Col. 2. 8.




True Christian Divinity.


Concerning the true FOUNDATION of KNOWLEDGE.

_Seeing the Height of all Happiness is placed in the true Knowledge
    of God_, [27](This is Life Eternal, to know thee the only true
    God, and Jesus Christ whom thou hast sent) _the true and right
    understanding of this Foundation and Ground of Knowledge is that
    which is most necessary to be known and believed in the first

[27] _John 17. 3._

He that desireth to acquire any Art or Science, seeketh first those
Means by which that Art or Science is obtained: If we ought to do so in
Things Natural and Earthly, how much more then in Spiritual? In this
Affair then should our Inquiry be the more diligent, because he that
Errs in the Entrance, is not so easily brought back again into the
Right Way; he that misseth his Road from the Beginning of his Journey,
and is deceived in his first Marks, at his first setting forth, the
greater his Mistake is, the more difficult will be his Entrance into
the Right Way.

[Sidenote: _The Way to the true Knowledge of God._] Thus when a Man
first proposeth to himself the Knowledge of God, from a Sense of his
own Unworthiness, and from the great Weariness of his Mind, occasioned
by the secret Checks of his Conscience, and the tender yet real Glances
of God’s _Light_ upon his Heart; the earnest Desires he has to be
redeemed from his present Trouble, and the fervent Breathings he has to
be eased of his disordered Passions and Lusts, and to find Quietness
and Peace in the certain Knowledge of God, and in the Assurance of his
Love and Good-will towards him, make his Heart tender, and ready to
receive any Impression; and so (not having then a distinct Discerning)
through Forwardness embraceth any Thing that brings present Ease. If
either through the Reverence he bears to certain Persons, or from the
secret Inclination to what doth comply with his natural Disposition, he
fall upon any Principles or Means by which he apprehends he may come
to know God, and so doth center himself, it will be hard to remove him
thence again, how wrong soever they may be: For the first Anguish being
over, he becomes more hardy; and the Enemy being near, creates a false
Peace, and a certain Confidence, which is strengthened by the Mind’s
Unwillingness to enter again into new Doubtfulness, or the former
Anxiety of a Search.

[Sidenote: _Jewish Doctors and Pharisees resist Christ._] This is
sufficiently verified in the Example of the _Pharisees_ and _Jewish
Doctors_, who most of all resisted _Christ_, disdaining to be esteemed
Ignorant; for this vain Opinion they had of their Knowledge, hindered
them from the true Knowledge; and the mean People, who were not so
much pre-occupied with former Principles, nor conceited of their own
Knowledge, did easily believe. Wherefore the _Pharisees_ upbraid them,
saying, [28]_Have any of the Rulers or Pharisees believed on him?
But this People, which know not the Law, are accursed._ This is also
abundantly proved by the Experience of all such, as being secretly
touched with the Call of God’s Grace unto them, do apply themselves to
false Teachers, where the Remedy proves worse than the Disease; because
instead of knowing God, or the Things relating to their Salvation
aright, they drink in wrong Opinions of him; from which it is harder to
be disintangled, than while the Soul remains a Blank, or _Tabula rasa_.
For they that conceit themselves Wise, are worse to deal with than they
that are sensible of their Ignorance. Nor hath it been less the Device
of the Devil, the great Enemy of Mankind, to persuade Men into wrong
Notions of God, than to keep them altogether from acknowledging him;
the latter taking with few, because odious; but the other having been
the constant Ruin of the World: For there hath scarce been a Nation
found, but hath had some Notions or other of Religion; so that not from
their denying any Deity, but from their Mistakes and Misapprehensions
of it, hath proceeded all the Idolatry and Superstition of the World;
yea, hence even Atheism itself hath proceeded: For these many and
various Opinions of God and Religion, being so much mixed with the
Guessings and uncertain Judgments of Men, have begotten in many the
Opinion, That there is no God at all. This, and much more that might
be said, may shew how dangerous it is to miss in this first Step: _All
that come not in by the right Door, are _accounted_ as Thieves and

[28] John 7. 48, 49.

[Sidenote: _Epictetus._] Again, How needful and desirable that
Knowledge is, which brings _Life Eternal_, _Epictetus_ sheweth, saying
excellently well, _Cap. 38._ [Greek: isthi hoti to Kyriôtaton: ισθι ὁτι
το Κυριωτατον], &c. _Know that the main Foundation of Piety is this, To
have_ [Greek: orthas hypolêpseis: ορθας ὑποληψεις], _right Opinions and
Apprehensions of God_.

This therefore I judged necessary, as a first Principle, in the first
Place, to affirm; and I suppose will not need much farther Explanation
or Defence, as being generally acknowledged by all (and in these
Things that are without Controversy I love to be brief) as that which
will easily commend itself to every Man’s Reason and Conscience; and
therefore I shall proceed to the next Proposition; which, though it
be nothing less certain, yet by the Malice of Satan, and Ignorance of
many, comes far more under Debate.



[29]_Seeing _no Man knoweth the Father but the Son, and he to whom the
    Son revealeth him;_ and seeing _the Revelation of the Son is_ in
    _and_ by _the Spirit;_ therefore the Testimony of the Spirit is
    that alone by which the true Knowledge of God hath been, is, and
    can be only revealed: Who as, by the Moving of his own Spirit,
    he disposed the_ Chaos _of this World into that wonderful Order
    in which it was in the Beginning, and created Man a Living Soul,
    to Rule and Govern it; so by the Revelation of the same Spirit
    he hath manifested himself all along unto the Sons of Men, both
    Patriarchs, Prophets and Apostles: Which Revelations of God by
    the Spirit, whether by outward Voices and Appearances, Dreams,
    or inward objective Manifestations in the Heart, were of old the
    formal Object of their Faith, and remain yet so to be; since _the
    Object of the Saints’ Faith is the same in all Ages, tho’ held
    forth under divers Administrations._ Moreover, these Divine Inward
    Revelations, which we make absolutely necessary for the building
    up of true Faith, neither do, nor can ever, contradict the outward
    Testimony of the Scriptures, or right and sound Reason; yet from
    hence it will not follow, that these Divine Revelations are to
    be subjected to the Test, either of the outward Testimony of the
    Scriptures, or of the Natural Reason of Man, as to a more noble
    or certain Rule and Touchstone; for this Divine Revelation, and
    Inward Illumination, is that which is evident and clear of itself;
    forcing, by its own Evidence and Clearness, the well-disposed
    Understanding to assent, irresistibly moving the same thereunto,
    even as the common Principles of natural Truths do move and incline
    the Mind to a natural Assent: As,_ That the Whole is greater than
    its Part; That two Contradictories can neither be both true, nor
    both false.

[29] Mat. 11. 27.

§. I. [Sidenote: _Revelation by Apostate Christians rejected._]
It is very probable, that many carnal and natural Christians will
oppose this Proposition; who, being wholly unacquainted with the
Movings and Actings of God’s Spirit upon their Hearts, judge the same
nothing necessary; and some are apt to flout at it as ridiculous:
Yea, to that Height are the Generality of Christians apostatized and
degenerated, that though there be not any Thing more plainly Asserted,
more seriously Recommended, or more certainly Attested to, in all
the Writings of the holy Scriptures; yet nothing is less minded, and
more rejected, by all Sorts of Christians, than _Immediate and Divine
Revelation_; insomuch, that once to lay Claim to it, is Matter of
Reproach. Whereas of old, none were ever judged Christians, but such
as _had the Spirit of Christ_, Rom. viii. 9. But now many do boldly
call themselves _Christians_, who make no Difficulty of confessing
they are without it, and laugh at such as say they have it. Of old
they were accounted _the Sons of God, who were led by the Spirit of
God_, ibid. verse 14. But now many aver themselves Sons of God, who
know nothing of this Leader; and he that affirms himself so led, is, by
the pretended Orthodox of this Age, presently proclaimed an Heretick.
The Reason hereof is very manifest, _viz._ Because many in these Days,
under the Name of _Christians_, do experimentally find, that they are
not actuated, nor led, by God’s Spirit; yea, many great _Doctors_,
_Divines_, _Teachers_ and _Bishops_ of Christianity, (commonly so
called) have wholly shut their Ears from hearing, and their Eyes from
seeing, this _Inward Guide_, and so are become Strangers unto it;
whence they are, by their own Experience, brought to this Strait,
either to confess that they are as yet ignorant of God, and have only
the Shadow of _Knowledge_, and not the true _Knowledge_ of him, or that
this _Knowledge_ is acquired without Immediate Revelation.

[Sidenote: _Knowledge Spiritual and Literal distinguished._] For the
better understanding then of this Proposition, we do distinguish
betwixt the certain Knowledge of God, and the uncertain; betwixt the
spiritual Knowledge, and the literal; the saving Heart-Knowledge, and
soaring, airy Head-Knowledge. The last, we confess, may be divers Ways
obtained; but the first, by no other Way than the inward immediate
Manifestation and Revelation of God’s Spirit, shining in and upon the
Heart, inlightning and opening the Understanding.

§. II. Having then proposed to myself, in these Propositions, to affirm
those Things which relate to the true and effectual Knowledge, which
brings Life Eternal with it; therefore I have truly affirmed, that this
Knowledge is no otherways attained, and that none have any true Ground
to believe they have attained it, who have it not by this Revelation of
God’s Spirit.

The Certainty of which Truth is such, that it hath been acknowledged
by some of the most refined and famous of all Sorts of Professors
of Christianity in all Ages; who being truly upright-hearted, and
earnest Seekers of the Lord, (however stated under the Disadvantages
and epidemical Errors of their several Sects or Ages) the true Seed in
them hath been answered by God’s Love, who hath had Regard to the Good,
and hath had of his Elect Ones among all, who finding a Distaste and
Disgust in all other outward Means, even in the very Principles and
Precepts more particularly relative to their own Forms and Societies,
have at last concluded, with _One Voice_, That there was no true
Knowledge of God, but that which is revealed inwardly by his own
Spirit. Whereof take these following Testimonies of the Ancients.

[Sidenote: _Aug._] 1. [30]“_It is the Inward Master (_saith_ Augustine)
that Teacheth, it is Christ that Teacheth, it is Inspiration that
Teacheth: Where this Inspiration and Unction is wanting, it is in vain
that Words from without are beaten in._” And thereafter: “_For he that
created us, and redeemed us, and called us, by Faith, and dwelleth in
us by his Spirit, unless he speaketh unto us Inwardly, it is needless
for us to cry out._”

[30] _Aug. _ex Tract. Ep._ Joh. 3._

[Sidenote: _Clem. Alex._] 2. [31]“_There is a Difference (_saith_
Clemens Alexandrinus) betwixt that which any one saith of the Truth,
and that which the Truth itself, interpreting itself, saith. A
Conjecture of Truth differeth from the Truth itself; a Similitude of
a Thing differeth from the Thing itself; it is one Thing that is
acquired by Exercise and Discipline; and another Thing, which by Power
and Faith._” Lastly, the same _Clemens_ saith, [32]“_Truth is neither
hard to be arrived at, nor is it impossible to apprehend it; for it is
most Nigh unto us, even in our Houses, as the most wise_ Moses _hath

[31] _Clem. Alex._ I. 1. Strom.

[32] Pædag.

[Sidenote: _Tertullian._] 3. [33]“_How is it (_saith_ Tertullian) that
since the Devil always worketh, and stirreth up the Mind to Iniquity,
that the Work of God should either cease, or desist to act? Since for
this End the Lord did send the Comforter, that because human Weakness
could not at once bear all Things, Knowledge might be by little and
little directed, formed, and brought to Perfection, by the Holy Spirit,
that Vicar of the Lord._ I have many Things yet (_saith he_) to speak
unto you, but ye cannot as yet bear them; but when that Spirit of Truth
shall come, he shall lead you into all Truth, and shall teach you these
Things that are to come. _But of this his Work we have spoken above.
What is then the Administration of the Comforter, but that Discipline
be directed, and the Scriptures revealed?_” &c.

[33] _Tertullianus_ Lib. de veland. Virginibus, cap. 1.

[Sidenote: _Jerome_] 4. [34]“_The Law (_saith_ Jerome) is Spiritual,
and there is need of a Revelation to understand it._” And in his
Epistle 150. to _Hedibia_, Quest. 11. he saith, “_The whole Epistle to
the _Romans_ needs an Interpretation; it being involved in so great
Obscurities, that for the understanding thereof we need the Help of the
Holy Spirit, who through the Apostle dictated it._”

[34] _Jerome_ Ep. Paulin. 103.

[Sidenote: _Athanasius._] 5. [35]“_So great Things (_saith_ Athanasius)
doth our Saviour daily: He draws unto Piety, persuades unto Virtue,
teaches Immortality, excites to the Desire of Heavenly Things, reveals
the Knowledge of the Father, inspires Power against Death, and shews
himself unto every one._”

[35] _Athanasius_ de Incarn. Verbi Dei.

[Sidenote: _Gregory_] 6. [36]_Gregory_ the Great, upon these Words
[_He shall teach you all Things_] saith, “_That unless the same Spirit
is present in the Heart of the Hearer, in vain is the Discourse of
the Doctor. Let no Man then ascribe unto the Man that teacheth, what
he understands from the Mouth of him that speaketh; for unless he
that teacheth be within, the Tongue of the Doctor, that is without,
laboureth in vain._”

[36] _Greg._ Mag. Hom. 30. upon the Gospel.

[Sidenote: _Cyrillus Alexandrinus_] 7. [37]_Cyrillus Alexandrinus_
plainly affirmeth, “_That Men know that_ Jesus is the Lord by the Holy
Ghost, _no otherwise than they who taste Honey know that it is sweet,
even by its proper Quality_.”

[37] _Cyril. Alex._ in _Thesauro_, lib. 13. c. 3.

[Sidenote: _Bernard._] 8. [38]“_Therefore (_saith_ Bernard) we daily
exhort you, Brethren, that ye walk the Ways of the Heart, and that
your Souls be always in your Hands, that ye may hear what the Lord
saith in you._” And again, upon these Words of the Apostle [_Let him
that glorieth, glory in the Lord_] “_With which Threefold Vice _(saith
he)_ all Sorts of Religious Men are less or more dangerously affected,
because they do not so diligently attend, with the Ears of the Heart,
to what the Spirit of Truth (which flatters none) inwardly speaks._”

[38] _Bernard _in_ Psal. 84._

This was the very Basis, and main Foundation, upon which the Primitive
Reformers built.

[Sidenote: _Luther._] [39]_Luther_, in his Book to the Nobility of
_Germany_, saith, “_This is certain, That no Man can make himself a
Teacher of the holy Scriptures, but the Holy Spirit alone._” And upon
the _Magnificat_ he saith, “_No Man can rightly know God, or understand
the Word of God, unless he immediately receive it from the Holy Spirit;
neither can any one receive it from the Holy Spirit, except he find
it by Experience in himself; and in this Experience the Holy Ghost
teacheth, as in his proper School; out of which School nothing is
taught but mere Talk._”

[39] _Luther._ Tom. 5. p. 76.

[Sidenote: _Phil. Melancthon_] _Philip Melancthon_, in his Annotations
upon _John_ vi. “_Those who hear only an outward and bodily Voice, hear
the Creature; but _God is a Spirit_, and is neither discerned, nor
known, nor heard, but by the Spirit;_ [Sidenote: _By the Spirit alone
God is known._] _and therefore to hear the Voice of God, to see God,
is to know and hear the Spirit. By the Spirit alone God is known and

Which also the more Serious to this Day do acknowledge, even all such
who satisfy themselves not with the Superficies of Religion, and
use it not as a Cover or Art. Yea, all those who apply themselves
effectually to Christianity, and are not satisfied until they have
found its effectual Work upon their Hearts, redeeming them from Sin,
do feel that no Knowledge effectually prevails to the producing of
this, but that which proceeds from the warm Influence of God’s Spirit
upon the Heart, and from the comfortable Shining of his Light upon
their Understanding. [Sidenote: _Dr. _Smith_ of _Cambridge_, concerning
Book-Divinity._] And therefore to this Purpose a modern Author, _viz._
Dr. _Smith_ of _Cambridge_, in his Select Discourses, saith well; “_To
seek our Divinity merely in Books and Writings, is to seek the Living
among the Dead. We do but in vain many Times seek God in these, where
his Truth is too often not so much Enshrined as Entombed._ Intra te
quære Deum, _Seek God within thine own Soul: He is best discerned
_[Greek: noera epaphê: νοερα επαφη]_ (as _Plotinus_ phrased it) by an
Intellectual Touch of him. We must_ see with our Eyes, and hear with
our Ears, and our Hands must handle the Word of Life (_to express it in
St. _John_’s Words_) [Greek: hoti tês psychês aisthêsis: ὁτι της ψυχης
αισθησις], _&c. The Soul itself hath its Sense, as well as the Body._
And therefore, _David_, when he would teach us to know what the Divine
Goodness is, calls not for Speculation, but Sensation: _Taste, and see
how good the Lord is_. That is not the best and truest Knowledge of
God, which is wrought out by the Labour and Sweat of the Brain, but
that which is kindled within us, by an heavenly Warmth in our Hearts.
_And again_: There is a Knowing of the _Truth, as it is in Jesus_, as
it is in a _Christ-like Nature_; as it is in that sweet, mild, humble,
and loving Spirit of Jesus, which spreads itself, like a _Morning Sun_,
upon the Souls of good Men, full of Light and Life. It profits little
to know Christ himself after the Flesh; but he gives his Spirit to good
Men, _that searcheth the deep things of God_. _And again_: It is but a
thin airy Knowledge, that is got by mere Speculation, which is ushered
in by Syllogisms and Demonstrations; but that which springs forth from
true Goodness, is [Greek: theioteron ti pasês hypodeixeôs: θειοτερον τι
πασης ὑποδειξεως] (as _Origen_ speaketh) _It brings such a Divine Light
into the Soul, as is more clear and convincing than any Demonstration_.”

§. III. [Sidenote: Apostasy and a false Knowledge introduced.] That
this certain and undoubted Method of the true Knowledge of God hath
been brought out of use, hath been none of the least Devices of the
Devil, to secure Mankind to his Kingdom. For after the Light and Glory
of the Christian Religion had prevailed over a great Part of the
World, and dispelled the thick Mists of the Heathenish Doctrine of the
Plurality of Gods, he that knew there was no Probability of deluding
the World any longer that Way, did then puff Man up with a false
Knowledge of the true God; setting him on work to seek God the wrong
Way, and persuading him to be content with such a Knowledge as was of
his own acquiring, and not of God’s teaching. And this Device hath
proved the more successful, because accommodated to the natural and
corrupt Spirit and Temper of Man, who above all Things affects to exalt
himself; in which Exaltation, as God is greatly dishonoured, so therein
the Devil hath his End; who is not anxious how much God is acknowledged
in Words, provided himself be but always served; he matters not how
great and high Speculations the Natural Man entertains of God, so
long as he serves his own Lusts and Passions, and is obedient to his
evil Suggestions and Temptations. [Sidenote: _Christianity is become
an Art, acquired by human Science and Industry._] Thus _Christianity_
is become as it were an Art, acquired by human Science and Industry;
like any other Art or Science; and Men have not only assumed the Name
of _Christians_, but even have procured themselves to be esteemed
as _Masters of Christianity_, by certain Artificial Tricks, though
altogether Strangers to the Spirit and Life of Jesus. But if we make a
right Definition of a _Christian_, according to the Scripture, That _he
is one who hath the Spirit and is led by it_, how many _Christians_,
yea, and of these great _Masters_ and _Doctors of Christianity_, so
accounted, shall we justly divest of that Noble Title?

[Sidenote: _By Revelation is the true Knowledge of God._] If
those therefore who have all the other Means of Knowledge, and
are sufficiently Learned therein, whether it be the Letter of the
Scripture, the Traditions of Churches, or the Works of Creation and
Providence, whence they are able to deduce strong and undeniable
Arguments (which may be true in themselves) are not yet to be esteemed
_Christians_, according to the certain and infallible Definition
above-mentioned; and if the inward and immediate Revelation of God’s
Spirit in the Heart, in such as have been altogether ignorant of some,
and but very little skilled in others, of these Means of attaining
Knowledge, hath brought them to Salvation; then it will necessarily
and evidently follow, that Inward and Immediate Revelation is the only
sure and certain Way to attain the true and saving Knowledge of God.

But the first is true: Therefore the last.

Now as this Argument doth very strongly conclude for this Way of
Knowledge, and against such as deny it; so in this Respect it is the
more to be regarded, as the Propositions, from which it is deduced, are
so clear, that our very Adversaries cannot deny them. For as to the
first, it is acknowledged, that many Learned Men may be, and have been,
damned. And as to the second, who will deny but many illiterate Men may
be, and are, saved? [Sidenote: Abel, Seth, Noah, _&c. instanced_.] Nor
dare any affirm, that none come to the Knowledge of God and Salvation
by the inward Revelation of the Spirit, without these other outward
Means; unless they be also so bold as to exclude _Abel_, _Seth_,
_Noah_, _Abraham_, _Job_, and all the holy Patriarchs from true
Knowledge and Salvation.

§. IV. I would however not be understood as if hereby I excluded
those other Means of Knowledge from any Use or Service to Man; it is
far from me so to judge, as concerning the _Scriptures_, in the next
Proposition, will more plainly appear. The Question is not, what may be
profitable or helpful, but what is absolutely necessary. Many Things
may contribute to further a Work, which yet are not the main Thing that
makes the Work go on.

The Sum then of what is said amounts to this, That where the true
Inward Knowledge of God is, through the Revelation of his Spirit, there
is all; neither is there an absolute Necessity of any other. But where
the best, highest, and most profound Knowledge is, without this there
is nothing, as to the obtaining the great End of Salvation. This Truth
is very effectually confirmed by the first Part of the Proposition
itself, which in few Words comprehendeth divers unquestionable
Arguments, which I shall in brief subsume.

[Sidenote: I.] First, _That there is no Knowledge of the Father but by
the Son_.

[Sidenote: II.] Secondly, _That there is no Knowledge of the Son, but
by the Spirit_.

[Sidenote: III.] Thirdly, _That by the Spirit God hath always revealed
himself to his Children_.

[Sidenote: IV.] Fourthly, _That these Revelations were the formal
Object of the Saints’ Faith_.

[Sidenote: V.] And Lastly, _That the same continueth to be the Object
of the Saints’ Faith to this Day_.

Of each of these I shall speak a little particularly, and then proceed
to the latter Part.

§. V. [Sidenote: _Assert. _I._ Proved._] As to the first, viz. _That
there is no Knowledge of the Father but by the Son_, it will easily
be proved, being founded upon the plain Words of Scripture, and
is therefore a fit _Medium_ from whence to deduce the rest of our

For the infinite and most wise God, who is the _Foundation_, _Root_
and _Spring_ of all _Operation_, hath wrought all Things by his
Eternal Word and Son. [40]_This is that WORD that was in the Beginning
with God, and was God, by whom all Things were made, and without
whom was not any Thing made that was made_, [41]This is that _Jesus
Christ, by whom God created all Things, by whom, and for whom, all
Things were created, that are in Heaven and in Earth, visible and
invisible, whether they be Thrones, or Dominions, or Principalities,
or Powers_, Col. i. 16. Who therefore is called, _The first-born of
every Creature_, Col. i. 15. As then that infinite and incomprehensible
Fountain of Life and Motion operateth in the Creatures by his own
Eternal Word and Power; so no Creature has Access again unto him but in
and by the Son, according to his own express Words, _No Man knoweth the
Father, but the Son, and he to whom the Son will reveal him_, Mat. xi.
27. Luke x. 22. And again, he himself saith, _I am the Way, the Truth,
and the Life: No Man cometh unto the Father but by me_, John xiv. 6.

[40] John 1. 1, 2, 3.

[41] Eph. 3. 9.

Hence he is fitly called, _The Mediator betwixt God and Man_: For
having been with God from all Eternity, being himself God, and also in
Time partaking of the Nature of Man; through him is the Goodness and
Love of God conveyed to Mankind, and by him again Man receiveth and
partaketh of these Mercies.

Hence is easily deduced the Proof of this first Assertion, thus:

If no Man knoweth the Father but the Son, and he to whom the Son will
reveal him; then there is no Knowledge of the Father but by the Son.

But no Man knoweth the Father but the Son.

Therefore, there is no Knowledge of the Father but by the Son.

The first Part of the Antecedent are the plain Words of Scripture: The
Consequence thereof is undeniable; except one would say, that he hath
the Knowledge of the Father, while yet he knows him not; which were an
absurd Repugnance.

Again, if the Son be the Way, the Truth, and the Life, and that no Man
cometh unto the Father but by him; then there is no Knowledge of the
Father but by the Son.

But the first is true: Therefore the last.

The Antecedent are the very Scripture Words: The Consequence is very
evident: For how can any know a Thing, who useth not the Way, without
which it is not knowable? But it is already proved, that there is no
other Way but by the Son; so that whoso uses not that Way, cannot know
him, neither come unto him.

§. VI. [Sidenote: _Assert. _II._ Proved._] Having then laid down this
first Principle, I come to the second, viz. _That there is no Knowledge
of the Son but by the Spirit_; or, _That the Revelation of the Son of
God is by the Spirit_.

Where it is to be noted, that I always speak of the saving, certain and
necessary Knowledge of God; which that it cannot be acquired otherways
than by the Spirit, doth also appear from many clear Scriptures.
For Jesus Christ, in and by whom the Father is revealed, doth also
reveal himself to his Disciples and Friends in and by his Spirit: As
his Manifestation was outward, when he testified and witnessed for
the Truth in this World, and approved himself faithful throughout;
so being now withdrawn, as to the outward Man, he doth teach and
instruct Mankind inwardly, by his own Spirit; _He standeth at the
Door and knocketh, and whoso heareth his Voice and openeth, he comes
in_ to such, _Rev._ iii. 20. Of this Revelation of Christ in him,
_Paul_ speaketh, _Gal._ i. 16. in which he placeth the Excellency
of his Ministry, and the Certainty of his Calling. And the Promise
of Christ to his Disciples, _Lo, I am with you to the End of the
World_, confirmeth the same Thing; for this is an Inward and Spiritual
Presence, as all acknowledge: But what relates hereto will again occur.
[Sidenote: _Proof_ I.] I shall deduce the Proof of this Proposition
from two manifest Places of Scripture: The first is, 1 Cor. i. 11, 12.
_What Man knoweth the Things of a Man, save the Spirit of a Man which
is in him?_ [Sidenote: _The Things of God are known by the Spirit of
God._] _Even so the Things of God knoweth no Man, but the Spirit of
God. Now we have received not the Spirit of the World, but the Spirit
which is of God, that we might know the Things which are freely given
us of God._ The Apostle in the Verses before, speaking of the wonderful
Things which are prepared for the Saints, after he hath declared, that
the _Natural Man cannot reach them_, adds, that _They are revealed by
the Spirit of God_, Ver. 9, 10. giving this Reason, _For the Spirit
searcheth all things, even the deep Things of God_. And then he
bringeth in the Comparison, in the Verses above-mentioned, very apt,
and answerable to our Purpose and Doctrine, that _as the Things of a
Man are only known by the Spirit of Man; so the Things of God are only
known by the Spirit of God_: That is, that as nothing below the Spirit
of Man (as the Spirit of Brutes, or any other Creatures) can properly
reach unto, or comprehend the Things of a Man, as being of a nobler
and higher Nature; so neither can the Spirit of Man, or the Natural
Man, as the Apostle in the 14th Verse subsumes, receive nor discern the
Things of God, or the Things that are Spiritual, as being also of an
higher Nature; which the Apostle himself gives for the Reason, saying,
_Neither can he know them, because they are Spiritually discerned_. So
that the Apostle’s Words, being reduced to an Argument, do very well
prove the Matter under Debate, thus:

If that which appertaineth properly to Man, cannot be discerned by any
lower or baser Principle than the Spirit of Man; then cannot those
Things, that properly relate unto God and Christ, be known or discerned
by any lower or baser Thing than the Spirit of God and Christ.

But the first is true: Therefore also the second.

The whole Strength of the Argument is contained in the Apostle’s Words
before-mentioned; which therefore being granted, I shall proceed to
deduce a second Argument, thus:

That which is Spiritual can only be known and discerned by the Spirit
of God.

But the Revelation of Jesus Christ, and the true and saving Knowledge
of him, is Spiritual:

Therefore the Revelation of Jesus Christ, and the true and saving
Knowledge of him, can only be known and discerned by the Spirit of God.

[Sidenote: Proof II.] [Sidenote: _No Man can call Jesus Lord_, &c.]
The other Scripture is also a Saying of the same Apostle, 1 Cor. xii.
3. _No Man can say that Jesus is the Lord, but by the Holy Ghost._
This Scripture, which is full of Truth, and answereth full well to
the enlightened Understanding of the spiritual and real Christian,
may perhaps prove very strange to the carnal and pretended Follower
of Christ, by whom perhaps it hath not been so diligently remarked.
[Sidenote: _Spiritual Truths are Lies spoken by Carnal Men._] Here
the Apostle doth so much require the Holy Spirit, in the Things that
relate to a Christian, that he positively avers, we cannot so much as
affirm _Jesus to be the Lord without it_; which insinuates no less,
than that the Spiritual Truths of the Gospel are as Lies in the Mouths
of carnal and unspiritual Men; for tho’ in themselves they be true, yet
are they not true as to them, because not known, nor uttered forth, in
and by that Principle and Spirit that ought to direct the Mind, and
actuate it; in such Things they are no better than the counterfeit
Representations of Things in a Comedy; neither can it be more truly and
properly called a real and true Knowledge of God and Christ, than the
Actions of _Alexander_ the Great, _Julius Cæsar_, &c. if now transacted
upon a Stage, might be called truly and really their Doings, or the
Persons representing them might be said truly and really to have
conquered _Asia_, overcome _Pompey_, &c.

[Sidenote: _Like the Pratling of a Parrot._] This Knowledge then of
Christ, which is not by the Revelation of his own Spirit in the Heart,
is no more properly the Knowledge of Christ, than the Pratling of a
_Parrot_, which has been taught a few Words, may be said to be the
Voice of a Man; for as that, or some other Bird, may be taught to
sound or utter forth a rational Sentence, as it hath learned it by the
outward Ear, and not from any living Principle of Reason actuating it;
so just such is that Knowledge of the Things of God, which the natural
and carnal Man hath gathered from the Words or Writings of Spiritual
Men; which are not true to him, because conceived in the natural
Spirit, and so brought forth by the wrong Organ, and not proceeding
from the Spiritual Principle; no more than the Words of a Man, acquired
by Art, and brought forth by the Mouth of a Bird, not proceeding from
a Rational Principle, are true, with respect to the Bird which utters
them. Wherefore from this Scripture I shall further add this Argument:

If no Man can say _Jesus is the Lord, but by the Holy Ghost_; then no
Man can know _Jesus to be the Lord, but by the Holy Ghost_.

But the first is true: Therefore the second.

From this Argument there may be another deduced, concluding in the very
Terms of this Assertion: Thus,

If no Man can know _Jesus to be the Lord, but by the Holy Ghost_; then
can there be no certain Knowledge or Revelation of him, but by the

But the first is true: Therefore the second.

§. VII. [Sidenote: _Assert. _III._ Proved._] The third Thing affirmed
is, _That by the Spirit God always revealed himself to his Children_.

For making the Truth of this Assertion appear, it will be but needful
to consider God’s manifesting himself towards, and in relation to his
Creatures, from the Beginning, which resolves itself always herein.
The first Step of all is ascribed hereunto by _Moses_, Gen. i. 2. _And
the Spirit of God moved upon the Face of the Waters_. [Sidenote: _The
Revelation is by the Spirit of God._] I think it will not be denied,
that God’s Converse with Man, all along from _Adam to Moses_, was by
the Immediate Manifestation of his Spirit: And afterwards, through
the whole Tract of the Law, he spake to his Children no otherways;
which, as it naturally followeth from the Principles above proved, so
it cannot be denied, by such as acknowledge the Scriptures of Truth
to have been written by the Inspiration of the Holy Ghost: For these
Writings, from _Moses_ to _Malachi_, do declare, that during all that
Time, God revealed himself to his Children by his Spirit.

[Sidenote: Object.] But if any will Object, _That after the
Dispensation of the Law, God’s Method of Speaking was altered_;

[Sidenote: _Answ._] [Sidenote: _Sanctum Sanctorum._] I answer: _First_,
That God spake always immediately to the _Jews_, in that he spake
always immediately to the _High-Priest_ from betwixt the _Cherubims_;
who, when he entered into the _Holy of Holies_, returning, did relate
to the whole People the Voice and Will of God, there immediately
Revealed. So that this immediate Speaking never ceased in any Age.

[Sidenote: _None shut out from this Immediate Fellowship._] _Secondly_,
From this immediate Fellowship were none shut out, who earnestly sought
after, and waited for it; in that many, besides the _High-Priest_, who
were not so much as of the Kindred of _Levi_, nor of the Prophets, did
receive it and speak from it; as it is written, _Numb._ xi. 25. where
the _Spirit_ is said to have _rested upon the Seventy Elders_; which
Spirit also reached unto two that were not in the Tabernacle, but in
the Camp; whom when some would have forbidden, _Moses_ would not, but
rejoiced, _wishing that all the Lord’s People were Prophets, and that
he would put his Spirit upon them_, Ver. 29.

This is also confirmed, _Neh._ ix. Where the Elders of the People,
after their Return from Captivity, when they began to sanctify
themselves by Fasting and Prayer, numbering up the many Mercies of God
towards their Fathers, say, Ver. 20. _Thou gavest also thy good Spirit
to instruct them_; and Ver. 30. _Yet many Years didst thou forbear,
and testify against them by thy Spirit in thy Prophets._ Many are the
Sayings of Spiritual _David_ to this Purpose, as _Psalm_ li. 11, 12.
_Take not thy holy Spirit from me; uphold me with thy free Spirit._
Psal. cxxxix. 7. _Whither shall I go from thy Spirit?_ Hereunto doth
the Prophet _Isaiah_ ascribe the Credit of his Testimony, saying, Chap.
xlviii. 16. _And now the Lord God and his Spirit hath sent me._ And
that God revealed himself to his Children under the New Testament,
_to wit_, to the Apostles, Evangelists, and Primitive Disciples,
is confessed by all. How far now this yet continueth, and is to be
expected, comes hereafter to be spoken to.

§. VIII. [Sidenote: _Assert._ IV.] The fourth thing affirmed is, _That
these Revelations were the Object of the Saints’ Faith of old_.

[Sidenote: _Proved._] This will easily appear by the Definition of
Faith, and considering what its Object is: For which we shall not dive
into the curious and various Notions of the School-men, but stay in
the plain and positive Words of the Apostle _Paul_, who, _Heb._ xi.
describes it two Ways. [Sidenote: _What Faith is?_] _Faith _(saith he)_
is the Substance of Things hoped for, and the Evidence of Things not
seen_: Which, as the Apostle illustrateth it in the same Chapter by
many Examples, is no other but a firm and certain Belief of the Mind,
whereby it _resteth_, and in a Sense _possesseth_ the Substance of some
Things hoped for, through its Confidence in the Promise of God: And
thus the Soul hath a most firm Evidence, by its Faith, of Things not
yet seen nor come to pass. The Object of this Faith, is the _Promise_,
_Word_, or _Testimony of God_, speaking in the Mind. [Sidenote:
_The Object of Faith_, Deus Loquens.] Hence it hath been generally
affirmed, That the Object of Faith is _Deus Loquens_, &c. that is,
_God Speaking_, &c. Which is also manifest from all those Examples,
deduced by the Apostle throughout that whole Chapter, whose Faith was
founded neither upon any outward Testimony, nor upon the Voice or
Writing of Man, but upon the Revelation of God’s Will, manifest unto
them, and in them; as in the Example of _Noah_, Ver. 7, thus, _By
Faith _Noah_ being warned of God, of Things not seen as yet, moved
with Fear, prepared an Ark to the saving of his House; by the which
he condemned the World, and became Heir of the Righteousness which is
by Faith_. [Sidenote: Noah’s _Faith_.] What was here the Object of
_Noah’s Faith_, but God speaking unto him? He had not the Writings nor
Prophesyings of any going before, nor yet the Concurrence of any Church
or People, to strengthen him; and yet his Faith in the Word, by which
he contradicted the whole World, saved him and his House. [Sidenote:
Abraham’s _Faith_.] Of which also _Abraham_ is set forth as a singular
Example, being therefore called the Father of the Faithful, who is said
_against Hope to have believed in Hope_; in that he not only willingly
forsook his Father’s Country, not knowing whither he went; in that he
believed concerning the coming of _Isaac_, though contrary to natural
Probability; but above all, in that he refused not to offer him up,
not doubting but God was able to raise him from the Dead; of whom it
is said, That in _Isaac shall thy Seed be called_. And last of all, In
that he rested in the Promise, that his Seed should possess the Land,
wherein he himself was but a Pilgrim, and which to them was not to be
fulfilled while divers Ages after. The Object of _Abraham’s_ Faith in
all this, was no other but inward and immediate Revelation, or God
signifying his Will unto him inwardly and immediately by his Spirit.

But because, in this Part of the Proposition, we made also Mention of
external Voices, Appearances, and Dreams in the Alternative, I think
also fit to speak hereof what in that respect may be objected; to wit,

[Sidenote: Object.] _That those who found their Faith now upon
Immediate and Objective Revelation, ought to have also outward Voices
or Visions, Dreams or Appearances for it._

[Sidenote: Answ.] [Sidenote: _The Ministry of Angels speaking in the
Appearance of Men to the Saints of old._] It is not denied, but God
made use of the Ministry of Angels, who, in the Appearance of Men,
spake outwardly to the Saints of old, and that he did also reveal some
Things to them in Dreams and Visions; none of which we will affirm to
be ceased, so as to limit the Power and Liberty of God, in manifesting
himself towards his Children. But while we are considering the Object
of Faith, we must not stick to that which is but Circumstantially and
Accidentally so, but to that which is Universally and Substantially so.

Next again, We must distinguish betwixt that which in itself is subject
to Doubt and Delusion, and therefore is received for and because of
another; and that which is not subject to any Doubt, but is received
simply for and because of itself, as being _Prima Veritas_, the _very
First_ and _Original_ Truth. Let us then consider how, or how far,
these outward Voices, Appearances and Dreams, were the Object of the
Saints’ Faith: Was it because they were simply Voices, Appearances or
Dreams? [Sidenote: _Revelations by Dreams and Visions._] Nay certainly;
for they were not ignorant that the Devil might form a Sound of Words,
convey it to the outward Ear, and deceive the outward Senses, by making
Things to appear that are not. Yea, do we not see by daily Experience,
that the _jugglers_ and _Mountebanks_ can do as much as all that, by
their _Legerdemain_? God forbid then, that the Saints’ Faith should
be founded upon so fallacious a Foundation, as Man’s outward and
fallible Senses. What made them then give Credit to these Visions?
Certainly nothing else, but the secret Testimony of _God’s Spirit_
in their Hearts, assuring them that the Voices, Dreams and Visions,
were of and from God. _Abraham_ believed the Angels; but who told him
that these Men were Angels? We must not think his Faith then was built
upon his outward Senses; but proceeded from the secret Persuasion of
God’s Spirit in his Heart. This then must needs be acknowledged to be
originally and principally the Object of the Saints’ Faith; without
which there is no true and certain Faith, and by which many Times Faith
is begotten and strengthened, without any of these outward or visible
Helps; as we may observe in many Passages of the Holy Scripture, where
it is only mentioned, _And God said_, &c. And _the Word of the Lord
came_ unto such and such, _saying_, &c.

[Sidenote: Object.] But if any one should pertinaciously affirm, _That
this did import an outward audible Voice to the Carnal Ear_;

[Sidenote: _Answ._] I would gladly know, what other Argument such
an one could bring for this his Affirmation, saving his own simple
Conjecture. It is said indeed, _The Spirit witnesseth with our
Spirit_; but not to our outward Ears, _Rom._ viii. 16. And seeing the
Spirit of God is within us, and not without us only, it speaks to our
spiritual, and not to our bodily Ear. [Sidenote: _The Spirit speaks to
the Spiritual Ear, not to the Outward._] Therefore I see no Reason,
where it is so often said in Scripture, _The Spirit said_, _moved_,
_hindered_, _called_ such or such a one, to _do_ or _forbear_ such or
such a Thing, that any have to conclude that this was not an Inward
Voice to the Ear of the Soul, rather than an Outward Voice to the
Bodily Ear. If any be otherwise minded, let them, if they can, produce
their Arguments, and we may further consider of them.

From all therefore which is above declared, I shall deduce an Argument,
to conclude the Proof of this Assertion, thus:

That which any one firmly believes, as the Ground and Foundation of his
Hope in God, and Life Eternal, is the formal Object of his Faith.

But the inward and immediate Revelation of God’s Spirit, speaking in
and unto the Saints, was by them believed, as the Ground and Foundation
of their Hope in God, and Life Eternal.

Therefore these inward and immediate Revelations were the formal Object
of their Faith.

§. IX. [Sidenote: _Assert. _V._ Proved._] That which now cometh under
Debate, is, what we asserted in the last Place, to wit, _That the same
continueth to be the Object of the Saints’ Faith unto this Day_. Many
will agree to what we have said before, who differ from us herein.

There is nevertheless a very firm Argument confirming the Truth of
this Assertion, included in the Proposition itself, to wit, _That the
Object of the Saints’ Faith is the same in all Ages, though held forth
under divers Administrations_. Which I shall reduce to an Argument, and
prove, thus:

First, _Where the Faith is one, the Object of the Faith is one_.

_But the Faith is one: Therefore_, &c.

That the Faith is one, is the express Words of the Apostle, _Eph._ iv.
5. who placeth the _one Faith_ with the _one God_; importing no less
than, that to affirm _two Faiths_, is as absurd as to affirm _two Gods_.

[Sidenote: _The Faith of the Saints of old the same with ours._]
Moreover, if the _Faith_ of the Ancients were not one and the same
with ours, _i. e._ agreeing in _Substance_ therewith, and receiving
the same Definition, it had been impertinent for the Apostle, _Heb._
xi. to have illustrated the Definition of our Faith, by the Examples
of that of the Ancients, or to go about to move us by the Example of
_Abraham_, if _Abraham_’s Faith were different in Nature from ours.
Nor doth any Difference arise hence, because they believed in Christ,
with respect to his Appearance outwardly as future; and we, as already
appeared: For neither did they then so believe in him to come, as
not to feel him present with them, and witness him near; seeing the
Apostle saith, _They all drank of that spiritual Rock which followed
them, which Rock was Christ_. Nor do we so believe concerning his
Appearance past, as not also to feel and know him _present with us_,
and to _feed upon him_; _except Christ _(saith the Apostle)_ be in
you, ye are Reprobates_; so that both our Faith is one, terminating in
one and the same Thing. And as to the other Part or Consequence of the
Antecedent; to wit, _That the Object is one, where the Faith is one_;
the Apostle also proveth it in the fore-cited Chapter, where he makes
all the Worthies of old Examples to us. Now wherein are they imitable,
but because they believed in God? And what was the Object of their
Faith, but inward and immediate Revelation, as we have before proved?
Their Example can be no-ways applicable to us, except we believe in
God as they did; that is, by the same Object. The Apostle clears this
yet further by his own Example, _Gal._ i. 16. where he saith, _So soon
as Christ was revealed in him, he consulted not with Flesh and Blood,
but forthwith believed and obeyed_. The same Apostle, _Heb._ xiii. 7,
8. where he exhorteth the _Hebrews_ to follow the Faith of the Elders,
adds this Reason, _Considering the End of their Conversation, Jesus
Christ, the same To-day, Yesterday, and for ever_: Hereby notably
insinuating, that in the Object there is no Alteration.

[Sidenote: Object.] If any now object the _Diversity of Administration_;

[Sidenote: _Answ._] I answer; That altereth not at all the _Object_:
For the same Apostle mentioning this Diversity three Times, 1 _Cor._
xii. 4, 5, 6. centereth always in the same Object; the same Spirit, the
same Lord, the same God.

But further; If the Object of Faith were not one and the same, both
to us and to them, then it would follow that we were to know God some
other Way than by the Spirit.

But this were absurd: Therefore, _&c._

Lastly, This is most firmly proved from a common and received Maxim
of the School-men, to wit, _Omnis actus specificatur ab objecto_,
Every Act is specified from its Object: for which if it be true, as
they acknowledge; (though for the Sake of many, I shall not recur to
this Argument, as being too Nice and Scholastick; neither lay I much
Stress upon those Kind of Things, as being that which commends not the
Simplicity of the Gospel) it would follow, that _If the Object were
different, then the Faith would be different also_.

Such as deny this Proposition now-a-days, use here a Distinction;
granting that _God is to be known by his Spirit_; but again denying
that _it is Immediate or Inward, but in and by the Scriptures, in which
the Mind of the Spirit _(as they say)_ being fully and amply Expressed,
we are thereby to know God, and be led in all Things_.

As to the Negative of this Assertion, That the Scriptures are not
sufficient, neither were ever appointed to be the adequate and only
Rule, nor yet can guide or direct a Christian in all those Things
that are needful for him to know, we shall leave that to the next
Proposition to be examined. [Sidenote: _Christians are now to be led by
the Spirit, in the same Manner as the Saints of Old._] What is proper
in this Place to be proved, is, _That Christians now are to be led
inwardly and immediately by the Spirit of God_, even in the same Manner
(though it befal not many to be led in the same Measure) as the Saints
were of old.

§. X. I shall prove this by divers Arguments, and first from the
Promise of Christ in these Words, _John_ xiv. 16. _And I will pray
the Father, and he will give you another Comforter, that he may abide
with you for ever._ Ver. 17. _Even the Spirit of Truth, whom the World
cannot receive, because it seeth him not, neither knoweth him; but
ye know him, for he dwelleth with you, and shall be in you._ Again,
Ver. 26. _But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father
will send in my Name, he shall teach you all Things, and bring all
Things to your Remembrance_; and xvi. 13. _But when the Spirit of
Truth shall come, he shall lead you into all Truth: For he shall not
speak of himself; but whatsoever he shall hear, he shall speak, and
shall declare unto you Things to come_. We have here first, who this
is, and that is divers Ways expressed, to wit, _The Comforter_, _the
Spirit of Truth_, _the Holy Ghost_, _the Sent of the Father in the
Name of Christ_. And hereby is sufficiently proved the Sottishness
of those _Socinians_, and other carnal Christians, who neither know
nor acknowledge any Internal Spirit or Power but that which is merely
Natural, by which they sufficiently declare themselves to be of the
World, who cannot receive the Spirit, because they neither see him
nor know him. _Secondly_, Where this Spirit is to be, _He dwelleth
with you, and shall be in you_. And _Thirdly_, What his Work is, _He
shall teach you all Things, and bring all Things to your Remembrance,
and guide you into all Truth_, [Greek: hodêgêsei hymas eis pasan tên
alêtheian: ὁδηγησει ὑμας εις πασαν την αληθειαν].

[Sidenote: _Query _I_. Who is this Comforter?_] As to the _First_,
Most do acknowledge that there is nothing else understood than what
the plain Words signify: which is also evident by many other Places
of Scripture, that will hereafter occur; neither do I see how such as
affirm otherways can avoid Blasphemy: For, if the _Comforter_, the
_Holy Ghost_, and _Spirit of Truth_, be all one with the Scriptures,
then it will follow that the Scriptures are God, seeing it is true
that the Holy Ghost is God. [Sidenote: _Nonsensical Consequences from
the_ Socinians _Belief of the Scriptures being the Spirit._] If these
Men’s Reasoning might take Place, wherever the _Spirit_ is mentioned in
relation to the Saints, thereby might be truly and properly understood
the _Scriptures_: which, what a nonsensical Monster it would make of
the Christian Religion, will easily appear to all Men. As where it is
said, _A Manifestation of the Spirit is given to every Man to profit
withal_; it might be rendered thus, A Manifestation of the _Scriptures_
is given to every Man to profit withal; what notable Sense this would
make, and what a curious Interpretation; let us consider by the Sequel
of the same Chapter, 1 _Cor._ xii. 9, 10, 11. _To another the Gifts of
Healing, by the same Spirit; to another, the working of Miracles, _&c._
But all these worketh that one and the self-same Spirit, dividing to
every Man severally as he will._ What would now these great Masters of
Reason, the _Socinians_, judge, if we should place the _Scriptures_
here instead of the _Spirit_? Would it answer their Reason, which is
the great Guide of their Faith? Would it be good and sound Reason
in their _Logical Schools_, to affirm that the Scripture divideth
severally, as it will, and giveth to some the _Gift of Healing, to
others the working of Miracles_? If then this Spirit, a Manifestation
whereof is given to every Man to profit withal, be no other than that
_Spirit of Truth_, before-mentioned, _which guideth into all Truth_;
this Spirit of Truth cannot be the Scripture. I could infer an Hundred
more Absurdities of this Kind, upon this sottish Opinion; but what
is said may suffice. For even some of themselves, being at Times
forgetful, or ashamed of their own Doctrine, do acknowledge, that the
Spirit of God is another Thing, and distinct from the Scriptures, to
Guide and Influence the Saints.

[Sidenote: _Query _II_. Where is his Place?_] _Secondly_, That
this Spirit is inward, in my Opinion, needs no Interpretation,
or Commentary, _He dwelleth with you, and shall be in you_. This
Indwelling of the Spirit in the Saints, as it is a Thing most needful
to be known and believed; so is it as positively asserted in the
Scripture, as any Thing else can be. _If so be that the Spirit of God
dwell in you_, saith the Apostle to the _Romans_, Chap. viii. 9. And
again, _Know ye not that your Body is the Temple of the Holy Ghost_, 1
Cor. vi. 19. _And that the Spirit of God dwelleth in you?_ 1 Cor. iii.
16. Without this the Apostle reckoneth no Man a Christian. _If any Man
_(saith he)_ have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his._ These
Words immediately follow these above-mentioned, out of the Epistle to
the _Romans_, _But ye are not in the Flesh, but in the Spirit, if so
be the Spirit of God dwell in you_. [Sidenote: _The Spirit within, the
main Token of a Christian._] The Context of which sheweth, that the
Apostle reckoneth it the main Token of a Christian, both positively and
negatively: For in the former Verses, he sheweth how the _carnal Mind
is Enmity against God_, and that such as are in the _Flesh_, _cannot
please him_. Where subsuming, he adds concerning the _Romans_, that
they _are not in the Flesh_, if the _Spirit of God dwell in them_.
What is this but to affirm, that they, in whom the Spirit dwells,
are no longer in the Flesh, nor of those who please not God, but
are become Christians indeed? Again, in the next Verse he concludes
negatively, that _If any Man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is
none of his_; that is, he is no Christian. He then that acknowledges
himself Ignorant, and a Stranger to the Inward In-being of the Spirit
of Christ in his Heart, doth thereby acknowledge himself to be yet in
the Carnal Mind, which is Enmity to God; to be yet in the Flesh, where
God cannot be pleased; and in short, whatever he may otherways know
or believe of Christ, or however much skilled, or acquainted with the
Letter of the Holy Scripture, not yet to be, notwithstanding all that,
attained to the least Degree of a Christian; yea, not once to have
embraced the Christian Religion. For take but away the Spirit, and
Christianity remains no more Christianity, than the dead Carcase of a
Man, when the Soul and Spirit is departed, remains a Man; which the
living can no more abide, but do bury out of their Sight as a noisome
and useless Thing, however acceptable it hath been, when actuated and
moved by the Soul. Lastly, _Whatsoever is Excellent, whatsoever is
Noble, whatsoever is Worthy, whatsoever is Desirable_ in the Christian
Faith, is ascribed to this _Spirit_; without which it could no more
subsist, than the outward World without the Sun. Hereunto have all true
Christians, in all Ages, attributed their Strength and Life. It is by
this Spirit, that they avouch themselves to have been converted to
God, to have been redeemed from the World, to have been strengthened
in their Weakness, comforted in their Afflictions, confirmed in their
Temptations, imboldened in their Sufferings, and triumphed in the
Midst of all their Persecutions. [Sidenote: _The great and notable
Acts that have been and are performed by the Spirit in all Ages._]
Yea, The Writings of all true Christians are full of the great and
notable Things, which they all affirm themselves to have done, by the
Power, and Virtue, and Efficacy of this Spirit of God working in them.
_It is the Spirit that quickeneth_, _John_ vi. 63. It was the _Spirit
that gave them Utterance_, _Acts_ ii. 4. It was the _Spirit_ by which
_Stephen_ spake, _That the Jews were not able to resist_, Acts vi. 10.
It is such as _walk after the Spirit, that receive no Condemnation_,
Rom. viii. 1. It is the _Law of the Spirit that makes free_, Ver. 2. It
is by the _Spirit of God dwelling in us_, that we are _redeemed from
the Flesh, and from the Carnal Mind_, Ver. 9. It is _the Spirit of
Christ dwelling in us, that quickeneth our mortal Bodies_, Ver. 11. It
is through this _Spirit_, that the Deeds of the Body are _mortified_,
and Life obtained, Ver. 13. It is by this _Spirit_, that we are
_adopted_, and _cry ABBA Father_, Ver 15. It is this _Spirit_, _that
beareth Witness with our Spirit, that we are the Children of God_, Ver.
16. It is this _Spirit_, _that helpeth our Infirmities, and maketh
Intercession for us, with Groanings which cannot be uttered_, Ver.
26. It is by this _Spirit_, that the glorious Things which God hath
laid up for us, _which neither outward Ear hath heard, nor outward Eye
hath seen, nor the Heart of Man conceived_ by all his Reasonings, are
revealed unto us, 1 _Cor._ ii. 9, 10. It is by this _Spirit_, that both
_Wisdom_, and _Knowledge_, and _Faith_, and _Miracles_, and _Tongues_,
and _Prophecies_, are obtained, 1 _Cor._ xii. 8, 9, 10. It is by this
_Spirit_, that we are _all Baptized into one Body_, Ver. 13. In short,
what Thing relating to the Salvation of the Soul, and to the Life of
a Christian, is rightly performed, or effectually obtained, without
it? And what shall I say more? For the Time would fail me, to tell of
all those Things, which the Holy Men of Old have declared, and the
Saints of this Day do themselves enjoy, by the Virtue and Power of this
_Spirit dwelling in them_. Truly my Paper could not contain the many
Testimonies, whereby this Truth is confirmed; wherefore, besides what
is above-mentioned out of the Fathers, whom all pretend to Reverence,
and those of _Luther_ and _Melancthon_, shall deduce yet one observable
Testimony out of _Calvin_, because not a few of the Followers of
his Doctrine do refuse and deride (and that, as it is to be feared,
because of their own Non-experience thereof) this Way of the Spirit’s
In-dwelling, as uncertain and dangerous; that so, if neither the
Testimony of the Scripture, nor the Sayings of others, nor right Reason
can move them, they may at least be reproved by the Words of their own
Master, who saith in the third Book of his Institutions, _Cap._ 2. on
this wise:

[Sidenote: _Calvin of the Necessity of the Spirit’s Indwelling in us._]
“_But they alledge, it is a bold Presumption for any to pretend to an
undoubted Knowledge of God’s Will_; which (saith he) I should grant
unto them, if we should ascribe so much to ourselves, as to subject the
Incomprehensible Counsel of God to the Rashness of our Understandings.
But while we simply say, with _Paul_, that _we have received not
the Spirit of this World, but the Spirit which is of God_; by whose
Teaching we know those Things that are given us of God, what can they
prate against it, without reproaching the Spirit of God? For if it be
an horrible Sacrilege to accuse any Revelation coming from him, either
of a Lie, of Uncertainty or Ambiguity, in asserting its Certainty,
wherein do we offend? But they cry out, _That it is not without great
Temerity, that we dare so boast of the Spirit of Christ_. Who would
believe that the Sottishness of these Men were so great, who would be
esteemed the Masters of the World, that they should so fail in the
first Principles of Religion? Verily I could not believe it, if their
own Writings did not testify so much. _Paul_ accounts those the _Sons
of God, who are actuated by the Spirit of God_; but these will have the
Children of God actuated by their own Spirits, without the Spirit of
God. He will have us call God _Father_, the Spirit dictating that Term
unto us, which only can witness to our Spirits, that we are the _Sons
of God_. These, though they cease not to call upon God, do nevertheless
dismiss the Spirit, by whose guiding he is rightly to be called upon.
He denies them to be the _Sons of God_, or the _Servants of Christ_,
who are not led by his Spirit; but these feign a Christianity that
needs not the Spirit of Christ. He takes away the Hope of a blessed
_Resurrection_, unless we feel the Spirit residing in us; but these
feign a Hope without any such a Feeling; but perhaps they will answer,
that they deny not but that it is necessary to have it, only of Modesty
and Humility we ought to deny and not acknowledge it. What means he
then, when he commands the _Corinthians_ to _Try themselves_, if they
be in the Faith; to _Examine themselves_, whether they have Christ,
whom whosoever acknowledges not dwelling in him, is a Reprobate? _By
the Spirit which he hath given us, _saith_ John, we know that he
abideth in us._ And what do we then else but call in question Christ’s
Promise, while we would be esteemed the Servants of God, without his
Spirit, which he declared he would _pour out upon all his_? Seeing
these Things are the first Grounds of Piety, it is miserable Blindness
to accuse Christians of Pride, because they dare glory of the Presence
of the Spirit; without which glorying, Christianity itself could not
be. [Sidenote: _Without the Spirit’s Presence _Christianity_ must
cease._] But by their Example they declare, how truly Christ spake,
saying, That his Spirit was unknown to the World, and that those only
acknowledge it, with whom it remains.” Thus far _Calvin_.

If therefore it be so, Why should any be so foolish as to deny, or so
unwise as not to seek after this Spirit, which Christ hath promised
shall dwell in his Children? They then that do suppose the Indwelling
and Leading of his Spirit to be ceased, must also suppose Christianity
to be ceased, which cannot subsist without it.

[Sidenote: _Query _III_. What is the Work of the Spirit?_] Thirdly,
_What the Work of this Spirit is_, is partly before shewn, which Christ
compriseth in two or three Things, [42]_He will guide you into all
Truth_; _He will teach you all Things, and bring all Things to your
Remembrance_. Since Christ hath provided for us so good an Instructor,
why need we then lean so much to those Traditions and Commandments of
Men, wherewith so many _Christians_ have burthened themselves? Why
need we set up our own carnal and corrupt Reason for a Guide to us, in
Matters spiritual, as some will needs do? [Sidenote: _The Spirit the
Guide._] May it not be complained of all such, as the Lord did of old,
concerning _Israel_, by the Prophets, _Jer._ ii. 13. _For my People
have committed two Evils, they have forsaken me, the Fountain of Living
Waters; and hewed them out Cisterns, broken Cisterns, that can hold no
Water?_ Have not many forsaken, do not many deride and reject, this
Inward and Immediate Guide, this Spirit, that leads into all Truth; and
cast up to themselves other Ways, broken Ways indeed, which have not
all this While brought them out of the Flesh, nor out of the World,
nor from under the Dominion of their own Lusts and sinful Affections;
whereby Truth, which is only rightly learned by this Spirit, is so much
a Stranger in the Earth?

[42] John 16. 13. and 14. 26.

[Sidenote: _A perpetual Ordinance to _God_’s Church and People._] From
all then that hath been mentioned concerning this Promise, and these
Words of Christ, it will follow, That Christians are always to be
led inwardly and immediately by the Spirit of God dwelling in them;
and that the same is a standing and perpetual Ordinance, as well to
the Church in general in all Ages, as to every Individual Member in
particular; as appears from this Argument:

The _Promises_ of Christ to his Children are _Yea_ and _Amen_, and
cannot fail, but must of Necessity be fulfilled.

But Christ hath promised, That the _Comforter_, the _Holy Ghost_, the
_Spirit of Truth_, shall abide with his Children for ever, shall dwell
with them, shall be in them, shall lead them into all Truth, shall
teach them all Things, and bring all Things to their Remembrance:

Therefore, The _Comforter_, the _Holy Ghost_, the _Spirit of Truth_,
his abiding with his Children, _&c._ is _Yea_ and _Amen_, &c.

Again: No Man is redeemed from the Carnal Mind, which is at Enmity with
God, which is not subject to the Law of God, neither can be; no Man is
yet in the Spirit, but in the Flesh, and cannot please God; except he
in whom the Spirit of God dwells.

But every true Christian is in measure redeemed from the Carnal Mind,
is gathered out of the Enmity, and can be subject to the Law of God; is
out of the Flesh, and in the Spirit, the Spirit of God dwelling in him:

Therefore every true Christian hath the Spirit of God dwelling in him.

Again: _Whosoever hath not the Spirit of Christ, is none of his_; that
is, no _Child_, no _Friend_, no _Disciple_ of Christ.

But every true Christian is a _Child_, a _Friend_, a _Disciple_ of

Therefore every true Christian hath the Spirit of Christ.

Moreover: Whosoever is the Temple of the _Holy Ghost_, in him the
Spirit of God dwelleth and abideth.

But every true Christian is the Temple of the _Holy Ghost_:

Therefore in every true Christian the Spirit of God dwelleth and

But to conclude: He in whom the Spirit of God dwelleth, it is not in
him a lazy, dumb, useless Thing; but it moveth, actuateth, governeth,
instructeth, and teacheth him all Things, whatsoever are needful for
him to know; yea, bringeth all Things to his Remembrance.

But the Spirit of God dwelleth in every true Christian:

Therefore the Spirit of God leadeth, instructeth, and teacheth every
true Christian whatsoever is needful for him to know.

§. XI. [Sidenote: Object.] But there are some that will confess, _That
the Spirit doth now lead and influence the Saints, but that he doth
it only Subjectively, or in a blind Manner, by enlightening their
Understandings, to understand and believe the Truth delivered in the
Scriptures; but not at all by presenting those Truths to the Mind, by
Way of Object_, and this they call, _Medium incognitum Assentiendi_, as
that _of whose working a Man is not sensible_.

[Sidenote: _Answ._] This Opinion, though somewhat more tolerable than
the former, is nevertheless not altogether according to Truth, neither
doth it reach the Fulness of it.

[Sidenote: _Arg 1._] 1. Because there be many Truths, which, as they
are applicable to Particulars and Individuals, and most needful to be
known by them, are in no-wise to be found in the Scripture, as in the
following _Proposition_ shall be shewn.

Besides, the _Arguments_ already adduced do prove, that the Spirit
doth not only _Subjectively_ help us to discern Truths elsewhere
delivered, but also _Objectively_ present those Truths to our Minds.
For that which teacheth me all Things, and is given me for that End,
without doubt presents those Things to my Mind which it teacheth me.
It is not said, _It shall teach you how to understand those Things
that are written_; but, _It shall teach you all Things_. Again, that
which brings all Things to my Remembrance, must needs present them by
Way of Object; else it were improper to say, It brought them to my
Remembrance; but only, that it helpeth to remember the Objects brought
from elsewhere.

[Sidenote: _Arg. 2._] My second Argument shall be drawn from the Nature
of the _New Covenant_; by which, and those that follow, I shall prove
that we are led by the Spirit, both _Immediately_ and _Objectively_.
The Nature of the New Covenant is expressed in divers Places: And

[Sidenote: _Proof 1._] First, _Isa._ lix. 21. _As for me, this is
my Covenant with them, saith the Lord, My Spirit that is upon thee,
and my Words which I have put into thy Mouth, shall not depart out
of thy Mouth, nor out of the Mouth of thy Seed, nor out of the Mouth
of thy Seed’s Seed, saith the Lord, from henceforth and for ever._
[Sidenote: _The Leadings of the Spirit._] By the latter Part of this is
sufficiently expressed the Perpetuity and Continuance of this Promise,
_It shall not depart, saith the Lord, from henceforth and for ever_. In
the former Part is the Promise itself, which is the Spirit of God being
upon them, and the Words of God being put into their Mouths.

[Sidenote: 1. Immediately.] First, This was _Immediate_, for there is
no Mention made of any _Medium_; he saith not, I shall by the Means of
such and such Writings or Books, convey such and such Words into your
Mouths; but _My Words, I, even I, saith the Lord, have put into your

[Sidenote: 2. Objectively.] Secondly, This must be _Objectively_; for
[_the Words put into the Mouth_] are the Object presented by him. He
saith not, The Words which ye shall see written, my Spirit shall only
enlighten your Understandings to assent unto; but positively, _My
Words, which I have put into thy Mouth_, &c. From whence I Argue thus:

Upon whomsoever the Spirit remaineth always, and putteth Words into
his Mouth, him doth the Spirit teach _Immediately_, _Objectively_, and

But the Spirit is always upon the Seed of the Righteous, and putteth
Words into their Mouths, neither departeth from them:

Therefore the Spirit teacheth the Righteous _Immediately_,
_Objectively_, and _Continually_.

[Sidenote: _Proof 2._] Secondly, The Nature of the _New Covenant_ is
yet more amply expressed, _Jer._ xxxi. 33. which is again repeated and
re-asserted, by the Apostle, _Heb._ viii. 10, 11. in these Words, _For
this is the Covenant that I will make with the House of Israel, after
those Days, saith the Lord, I will put my Laws into their Minds, and
write them in their Hearts, and I will be to them a God, and they shall
be to me a People. And they shall not teach every Man his Neighbour,
and every Man his Brother, saying, Know the Lord; for they shall all
know me from the least to the greatest._

The Object here is _God’s Law_ placed in the Heart, and written in the
Mind; from whence they become God’s People, and are brought truly to
know him.

[Sidenote: _The Difference between the Outward and Inward Law. _] In
this then is the _Law_ distinguished from the _Gospel_; the _Law_
before was outward, written in Tables of Stone; but now is inward,
written in the Heart: Of old the People depended upon their Priests
for the Knowledge of God, but now they have all a certain and sensible
Knowledge of Him; concerning which _Augustine_ speaketh well, in his
Book _De Litera & Spiritu_; from whom _Aquinas_ first of all seems to
have taken Occasion to move this Question, _Whether the New Law be a
written Law, or an Implanted Law; Lex scripta, vel Lex indita?_ Which
he thus resolves, Affirming, _That the New Law, or Gospel, is not
properly a Law written, as the Old was, but _Lex indita_, an Implanted
Law_; and that _the old Law was written without, but the new Law is
written within, on the Table of the Heart_.

How much then are they deceived, who, instead of making the Gospel
preferable to the Law, have made the Condition of such as are under
the Gospel far worse? [Sidenote: _The Gospel Dispensation more
glorious than that of the Law._] For no Doubt it is a far better, and
more desirable Thing, to converse with God _Immediately_, than only
_Mediately_, as being an higher and more glorious Dispensation: And yet
these Men acknowledge, that many under the Law had _Immediate_ Converse
with God, whereas they now cry it is ceased.

Again, Under the Law, there was the Holy of Holies, into which the High
Priest did enter, and received the Word of the Lord _immediately_ from
betwixt the Cherubims, so that the People could then certainly know the
Mind of the Lord; but now, according to these Men’s Judgment, we are
in a far worse Condition, having nothing but the outward Letter of the
Scripture to guess and divine from; concerning the Sense or Meaning of
one Verse of which scarce two can be found to agree. But Jesus Christ
hath promised us better Things, tho’ many are so unwise as not to
believe him, even to guide us by his own unerring Spirit, and hath rent
and removed the Veil, whereby not only one, and that once a Year, may
enter; but all of us, at all Times, have Access unto him, as often as
we draw near unto him with pure Hearts: He reveals his Will to us by
his Spirit, and writes his Laws in our Hearts. These Things then being
thus premised; I argue,

Where the Law of God is put into the Mind, and written in the Heart,
there the Object of Faith, and Revelation of the Knowledge of God, is
_inward_, _immediate_, and _objective_.

But the Law of God is put into the Mind, and written in the Heart of
every True Christian, under the new Covenant:

Therefore the Object of Faith, and Revelation of the Knowledge of God
to every True Christian, is inward, immediate, and objective.

The _Assumption_ is the express Words of Scripture: The _Proposition_
then must needs be true, except that _which is put into the Mind, and
written in the Heart_, were either not _inward_, not _immediate_, or
not _objective_, which is most absurd.

§. XII. [Sidenote: _Arg. 3. The Anointing recommended, as_,] The third
Argument is from these Words of _John_, 1 _John_ ii. Ver. 27. _But the
Anointing, which ye have received of him, abideth in you, and ye need
not that any Man teach you: But the same Anointing teacheth you of all
Things, and is Truth, and is no Lie; and even as it hath taught you, ye
shall abide in him._

[Sidenote: _1. Common._] _First_, This could not be any special,
peculiar, or extraordinary Privilege, but that which is common to all
the Saints, it being a general Epistle, directed to all them of that

[Sidenote: _2. Certain._] _Secondly_, The Apostle proposeth this
Anointing in them, as a more certain Touch-stone for them to discern
and try Seducers by, even than his own Writings; for having in the
former Verse said, that he had written some Things to them concerning
such as seduced them, he begins the next Verse, _But the Anointing_,
&c. _and ye need not that any Man teach you_, &c. which infers, that
having said to them what can be said, he refers them for all to
the inward Anointing, which teacheth all Things, as the most firm,
constant, and certain Bulwark, against all Seducers.

[Sidenote: _3. Lasting._] And _Lastly_, That it is a lasting and
continuing Thing; the Anointing which abideth. If it had not been
to abide in them, it could not have taught them all Things, neither
guarded them against all Hazard. From which I argue thus,

He that hath an Anointing abiding in him, which teacheth him all
Things, so that he needs no Man to teach him, hath an inward and
immediate Teacher, and hath some Things inwardly and immediately
Revealed unto him.

But the Saints have such an Anointing:

Therefore, _&c._

I could prove this Doctrine from many more Places of Scripture,
which for Brevity’s Sake I omit; and now come to the second Part of
the Proposition, where the Objections usually formed against it are

§. XIII. [Sidenote: Object.] The most usual is, That _these Revelations
are uncertain_.

[Sidenote: _Answ._] But this bespeaketh much Ignorance in the Opposers;
for we distinguish between the _Thesis_ and the _Hypothesis_; that
is, between the _Proposition_ and _Supposition_. For it is one Thing
to affirm, _that the true and undoubted Revelation of God’s Spirit is
certain and infallible_; and another Thing to affirm, that this or that
particular Person, or People, is led infallibly by this Revelation, in
what they speak or write, because they affirm themselves to be so led,
by the inward and immediate Revelation of the Spirit. The first is only
asserted by us; the latter may be called in question. The Question is
not, Who are, or are not so led? But, Whether all ought not, or may not
be so led?

[Sidenote: _The Certainty of the Spirit’s Guidance proved._] Seeing
then we have already proved, that Christ hath promised his Spirit to
lead his Children, and that every one of them both ought and may be led
by it; if any depart from this certain Guide in Deeds, and yet in Words
pretend to be led by it, into Things that are not good, it will not
from thence follow, that the true Guidance of the Spirit is uncertain,
or ought not to be followed; no more than it will follow, that the Sun
sheweth not Light, because a Blind Man, or one who wilfully hurts his
Eyes, falls into a Ditch at Noon-day for want of Light; or that no
Words are spoken, because a Deaf Man hears them not; or that a Garden
full of fragrant Flowers has no sweet Smell, because he that has lost
his Smelling doth not Smell it. The Fault then is in the Organ, and not
in the Object.

All these Mistakes therefore are to be ascribed to the Weakness or
Wickedness of Men, and not to that Holy Spirit. Such as bend themselves
most against this certain and infallible Testimony of the Spirit, use
commonly to alledge the Example of the old _Gnosticks_, and the late
Monstrous and Mischievous Actings of the _Anabaptists_ of _Munster_;
all which toucheth us nothing at all, neither weakens a Whit our most
true Doctrine. Wherefore, as a most sure Bulwark against such Kind
of Assaults, was subjoined that other Part of our Proposition, thus;
_Moreover these Divine and Inward Revelations, which we establish,
as absolutely necessary for the founding of the True Faith, as they
do not, so neither can they at any Time contradict the Scriptures
Testimony, or sound Reason_.

[Sidenote: _By Experience._] Besides the intrinsick and undoubted
Truth of this Assertion, we can boldly affirm it, from our certain and
blessed Experience. For this Spirit never deceived us, never acted nor
moved us to any Thing that was amiss; but is clear and manifest in its
Revelations, which are evidently discerned by us, as we wait in that
_pure and undefiled Light of God_, that proper and fit _Organ_, in
which they are received. Therefore if any reason after this Manner,

_That because some Wicked, Ungodly, Devilish Men, have committed wicked
Actions, and have yet more wickedly asserted, that they were led into
these Things by the Spirit of God_:

Therefore, _No Man ought to lean to the Spirit of God, or seek to be
led by it_;

[Sidenote: _The Absurdity of the Consequence._] I utterly deny the
Consequence of this Proposition; which, were it to be received
as true, then would all _Faith in God_, and _Hope of Salvation_,
become uncertain, and the _Christian Religion_ be turned into mere
_Scepticism_. For after the same Manner I might reason thus:

Because _Eve_ was deceived by the _Lying of the Serpent_:

Therefore she ought not to have trusted to the _Promise of God_.

Because the old World was deluded by _Evil Spirits_:

Therefore ought neither _Noah_, nor _Abraham_, nor _Moses_, to have
trusted the _Spirit of the Lord_.

Because a lying Spirit spake through the Four Hundred Prophets, that
persuaded _Ahab_ to go up and fight at _Ramoth Gilead_:

Therefore the Testimony of the _true Spirit in Micaiah_ was uncertain,
and dangerous to be followed.

Because there were _seducing Spirits_ crept into the Church of old:

Therefore it was not good, or it is uncertain, to follow the
_Anointing_, which taught all Things, and is Truth, and is no Lie.

Who dare say, that this is a necessary Consequence? Moreover, not
only the Faith of the Saints, and Church of God of old, is hereby
rendered uncertain, but also the Faith of all Sorts of Christians now
is liable to the like Hazard, even of those who seek a Foundation for
their Faith elsewhere than from the Spirit. For I shall prove by an
inevitable Argument, _ab Incommodo_, i. e. from the Inconveniency of
it, that if the Spirit be not to be followed upon that Account, and
that Men may not depend upon it, as their Guide, because some, while
pretending thereunto, commit great Evils; that then, neither Tradition,
nor the Scriptures, nor Reason, which the _Papists_, _Protestants_ and
_Socinians_, do respectively make the Rule of their Faith, are any Whit
more certain. [Sidenote: _1. Instances of Tradition._] The _Romanists_
reckon it an Error to celebrate _Easter_ any other Ways than that
Church doth. This can only be decided by Tradition. And yet the _Greek_
Church, which equally layeth Claim to Tradition with herself, doth
it otherwise. [43]Yea, so little effectual is Tradition to decide
the Case, that _Polycarpus_, the Disciple of _John_, and _Anicetus_,
the Bishop of _Rome_, who immediately succeeded them, according to
whole Example both Sides concluded the Question ought to be decided,
_could not agree_. Here of Necessity one of them must Err, and that
following Tradition. Would the _Papists_ now judge we dealt fairly by
them, if we should thence aver, that Tradition is not to be regarded?
Besides, in a Matter of far greater Importance, the same Difficulty
will occur, to wit, in the Primacy of the Bishop of _Rome_; for many
do affirm, and that by Tradition, That in the first Six Hundred Years
the _Roman Prelates_ never assumed the Title of _Universal Shepherd_,
nor were acknowledged as such. And as that which altogether overturneth
this Presidency, there are that alledge, and that from Tradition
also, That _Peter_ never saw _Rome_; and that therefore the Bishop of
_Rome_ cannot be his Successor. Would ye _Romanists_ think this sound
Reasoning, to say as you do?

[43] Euseb. _Hist. Eccles. Lib. 5. c. 26._

Many have been deceived, and erred grievously, in trusting to Tradition:

Therefore we ought to reject all Traditions, yea, even those by which
we affirm the contrary, and, as we think, prove the Truth.

_Lastly_, In the[44] Council of _Florence_, the chief Doctors of
the _Romish_ and _Greek Churches_ did debate whole Sessions long,
concerning the Interpretation of one Sentence of the Council of
_Ephesus_, and of _Epiphanius_, and _Basilius_, neither could they ever
agree about it.

[44] _Conc. _Flor._ Sess. 5. decreto quodam Conc. _Eph._ Act. 6. Sess.
11. & 12. Concil. _Flor._ Sess. 18, 20. Conc. _Flor._ Sess. 21._ P.
480. & _Seq._

[Sidenote: _2. Of Scripture._] _Secondly_, As to the Scripture,
the same Difficulty occurreth: The _Lutherans_ affirm they believe
Consubstantiation by the Scripture; which the _Calvinists_ deny, as
that which, they say, according to the same Scripture, is a gross
Error. The _Calvinists_ again affirm _absolute Predestination_, which
the _Arminians_ deny, affirming the contrary; wherein both affirm
themselves to be ruled by the Scripture and Reason in the Matter.
Should I argue thus then to the _Calvinists_?

Here the _Lutherans_ and _Arminians_ grossly err, by following the

Therefore the Scripture is not a good nor certain Rule; and _è

Would either of them accept of this Reasoning as good and sound? What
shall I say of the _Episcopalians_, _Presbyterians_, _Independents_,
and _Anabaptists_ of _Great Britain_, who are continually buffeting
one another with the Scripture? To whom the same Argument might be
alledged, though they do all unanimously acknowledge it to be the Rule.

[Sidenote: _3. Of Reason._] And _Thirdly_, As to Reason, I shall not
need to say much; for whence come all the Controversies, Contentions
and Debates in the World, but because every Man thinks he follows right
Reason? [Sidenote: _The Debates hence arising betwixt the old and late
Philosophers._] Hence of old, came the Jangles between the _Stoicks_,
_Platonists_, _Peripateticks_, _Pythagoreans_, and _Cynicks_, as of
late betwixt the _Aristotelians_, _Cartesians_, and other Naturalists:
Can it be thence inferred, or will the _Socinians_, those great
Reasoners, allow us to conclude, because many, and those very wise Men,
have erred, by following, as they supposed, their Reason, and that with
what Diligence, Care and Industry they could, to find out the Truth,
that therefore no Man ought to make use of it at all, nor be positive
in what he knows certainly to be Rational? And thus far as to Opinions;
the same Uncertainty is no less incident unto those other Principles.

§. XIV. [Sidenote: Anabaptists _for their wild Practices, and_
Protestants _and_ Papists _for their Wars and Bloodshed, each
pretending Scripture for it._] But if we come to Practices, though I
confess I do with my whole Heart abhor and detest those wild Practices,
which are written concerning the _Anabaptists_ of _Munster_; I am bold
to say, as bad, if not worse Things, have been committed by those
that lean to Tradition, Scripture, and Reason: Wherein also they have
averred themselves to have been authorized by these Rules. I need but
mention all the Tumults, Seditions, and horrible Bloodshed, wherewith
_Europe_ hath been afflicted these divers Ages; in which _Papists_
against _Papists_, _Calvinists_ against _Calvinists_, _Lutherans_
against _Lutherans_, and _Papists_, assisted by _Protestants_, against
other _Protestants_ assisted by _Papists_, have miserably Shed one
another’s Blood, Hiring and Forcing Men to kill each other, who were
Ignorant of the Quarrel, and Strangers one to another: All, mean while,
pretending Reason for so doing, and pleading the Lawfulness of it from

[Sidenote: _Tradition, Scripture, and Reason, made a Cover for
Persecution and Murder._] For what have the _Papists_ pretended for
their many _Massacres_, acted as well in _France_ as elsewhere,
but _Tradition_, _Scripture_, and _Reason_? Did they not say, That
_Reason_ persuaded them, _Tradition_ allowed them, and _Scripture_
commanded them, to Persecute, Destroy, and Burn _Hereticks_, such as
denied this plain Scripture, _Hoc est Corpus meum, This is my Body?_
And are not the _Protestants_ assenting to this Bloodshed, who
assert the same Thing, and encourage them, by Burning and Banishing,
while their Brethren are so treated for the same Cause? Are not the
Islands of _Great Britain_ and _Ireland_, yea, and all the Christian
World, a lively Example hereof, which were divers Years together as a
Theatre of Blood; where many lost their Lives, and Numbers of Families
were utterly destroyed and ruined? For all which no other Cause was
principally given, than the Precepts of the Scripture. If we then
compare these Actings with those of _Munster_, we shall not find great
Difference; for both affirmed and pretended they were called, and that
it was lawful to Kill, Burn, and Destroy the Wicked. _We must Kill all
the Wicked, _said those_ Anabaptists, that we, that are the Saints, may
possess the Earth. We must Burn obstinate Hereticks, _say the_ Papists,
that the _Holy Church of Rome_ may be purged of rotten Members, and
may live in Peace. We must cut off _Seducing Separatists, say the_
Prelatical Protestants, who trouble the Peace of the Church, and refuse
the _Divine Hierarchy_, and _Religious Ceremonies_ thereof. We must
Kill, _say the_ Calvinistick Presbyterians, the Prophane Malignants,
who accuse the _Holy Consistorial_ and _Presbyterian Government_,
and seek to defend the _Popish_ and _Prelatick Hierarchy_; as also
those other _Sectaries_ that trouble the Peace of our Church._ What
Difference I pray thee, Impartial Reader, seest thou betwixt these?

[Sidenote: Object.] If it be said, _The _Anabaptists_ went without, and
against the Authority of the _Magistrate_; so did not the other_;

[Sidenote: _Answ._] I might easily Refute it, by alledging the mutual
Testimonies of these _Sects_ against one another. [Sidenote: Examples
of Popish Cruelties.] The Behaviour of the _Papists_ towards _Henry_
the third and fourth of _France_; their Designs upon _James_ the sixth
in the Gunpowder Treason; as also their Principle of the _Pope_’s
Power to depose Kings, for the Cause of _Heresy_, and to absolve their
Subjects from their _Oath_, and give them to others, proves it against

[Sidenote: _Protestants Violences and Persecutions in_ Scotland,
England, _and_ Holland.] And as to the _Protestants_, how much their
Actions differ from those other above-mentioned, may be seen by the
many Conspiracies and Tumults which they have been active in, both
in _Scotland_ and _England_, and which they have acted within these
Hundred Years, in divers Towns and Provinces of the _Netherlands_. Have
they not oftentimes sought, not only from the _Popish Magistrates_,
but even from those that had begun to Reform, or that had given them
some Liberty of Exercising their Religion, that they might only be
permitted, without Trouble or Hindrance, to Exercise their Religion,
promising they would not hinder or molest the _Papists_ in the Exercise
of theirs? And yet did they not on the contrary, so soon as they had
Power, trouble and abuse those Fellow-Citizens, and turn them out
of the City, and, which is worse, even such, who together with them
had forsaken the Popish Religion? Did they not these Things in many
Places against the Mind of the Magistrates? Have they not publickly,
with contumelious Speeches, assaulted their Magistrates, from whom
they had but just before sought and obtained the free Exercise of
their Religion? Representing them, so soon as they opposed themselves
to their _Hierarchy_, as if they regarded neither God nor Religion?
Have they not by violent Hands possessed themselves of the _Popish
Churches_, so called, or by Force, against the Magistrates Mind, taken
them away? Have they not turned out of their Office and Authority
whole Councils of Magistrates, under Pretence that they were addicted
to _Popery_? Which _Popish Magistrates_ nevertheless they did but a
little before acknowledge to be Ordained by God; affirming themselves
obliged to yield them Obedience and Subjection, not only for Fear, but
for Conscience Sake; to whom moreover the very Preachers and Overseers
of the Reformed Church had willingly sworn Fidelity; and yet afterwards
have they not said, That the People are bound to force a wicked Prince
to the Observation of God’s Word? There are many other Instances of
this Kind to be found in their _Histories_, not to mention many worse
Things, which we know to have been acted in our Time, and which for
Brevity’s Sake I pass by.

[Sidenote: Lutheran _Seditions against the Reformed Teachers, and
Assault upon the Marquis of _Brandenburg_, &c. in _Germany.] I might
say much of the _Lutherans_, whose tumultuous Actions against their
Magistrates, not professing the _Lutheran Profession_, are testified
of by several Historians worthy of Credit. Among others, I shall
propose only one Example to the Reader’s Consideration, which fell out
at _Berlin_, in the Year 1615, “Where the seditious Multitude of the
_Lutheran_ Citizens, being stirred up by the daily Clamours of their
Preachers, did not only with Violence break into the Houses of the
reformed Teachers, overturn their Libraries, and spoil their Furniture;
but also with reproachful Words, yea, and with Stones, assaulted the
Marquis of _Brandenburg_, the Elector’s Brother, while he sought by
smooth Words to quiet the Fury of the Multitude; they killed ten of his
Guard, scarcely sparing himself, who at last by Flight escaped out of
their Hands.”

All which sufficiently declares, that the Concurrence of the Magistrate
doth not alter their Principles, but only their Method of Procedure. So
that for my own Part, I see no Difference betwixt the Actings of those
of _Munster_, and these others, (whereof the one pretended to be led
by the _Spirit_, the other by _Tradition_, _Scripture_, and _Reason_)
save this, that the former were rash, heady, and foolish, in their
Proceedings, and therefore were the sooner brought to nothing, and so
into Contempt and Derision: But the other, being more politick and wise
in their Generation, held it out longer, and so have authorized their
Wickedness more, with the seeming Authority of Law and Reason. But both
their Actings being equally Evil, the Difference appears to me to be
only like that which is between a simple silly Thief, that is easily
catched, and hanged without any more ado; and a Company of resolute
bold Robbers, who being better guarded, though their Offence be nothing
less, yet by Violence do, to shun the Danger, force their Masters to
give them good Terms.

From all which then it evidently follows, that they argue very ill, who
despise and reject any Principle, because Men pretending to be led by
it do evil; in case it be not the natural and consequential Tendency of
that Principle to lead unto those Things that are evil.

Again, It doth follow from what is above asserted, that if the Spirit
be to be rejected upon this Account, all those other Principles ought
on the same Account to be rejected. And for my Part, as I have never a
Whit the lower Esteem of the blessed Testimony of the Holy Scriptures;
nor do the less respect any solid Tradition, that is answerable and
according to Truth; neither at all despise Reason, that noble and
excellent Faculty of the Mind, because wicked Men have abused the Name
of them, to cover their Wickedness, and deceive the Simple; [Sidenote:
_Let none reject the Certainty of the unerring Spirit of God because of
false Pretenders to it._] so would I not have any reject or doubt the
Certainty of that Unerring Spirit, which God hath given his Children,
as that which can alone guide them into all Truth, because some have
falsely pretended to it.

§. XV. And because the Spirit of God is the Fountain of all Truth and
sound Reason, therefore we have well said, That _it cannot contradict
either the Testimony of the Scripture, or right Reason_: “_Yet _(as
the Proposition itself concludeth, to the last Part of which I now
come)_ it will not from thence follow, that these Divine Revelations
are to be subjected to the Examination either by the outward Testimony
of Scripture, or of the human or natural Reason of Man, as to a more
noble and certain Rule or Touch-stone; for the Divine Revelation, and
Inward Illumination, is that which is evident by itself, forcing the
well-disposed Understanding, and irresistibly moving it to assent,
by its own Evidence and Clearness; even as the common Principles of
natural Truths do bend the Mind to a natural Assent._”

He that denies this Part of the Proposition, must needs affirm, that
the Spirit of God neither can nor ever hath manifested itself to Man,
without the Scripture, or a distinct Discussion of Reason; or that the
Efficacy of this Supernatural Principle, working upon the Souls of Men,
is less evident than Natural Principles in their common Operations;
both which are false.

For, _First_, Through all the Scriptures we may observe, That the
Manifestation and Revelation of God by his Spirit to the Patriarchs,
Prophets, and Apostles, was _Immediate_ and _Objective_, as is above
proved; which they did not examine by any other Principle, but their
own Evidence and Clearness.

[Sidenote: _The Self-Evidence of the Spirit._] _Secondly_, To say that
the Spirit of God has less Evidence upon the Mind of Man than Natural
Principles have, is to have too mean and too low Thoughts of it.
How comes _David_ to invite us, to _taste and see that God is good_,
if this cannot be felt and tasted? This were enough to overturn the
Faith and Assurance of all the Saints, both now and of old. How came
_Paul_ to be persuaded, that _nothing could separate him from the Love
of God_, but by that Evidence and Clearness which the Spirit of God
gave him? The Apostle _John_, who knew well wherein the Certainty of
Faith consisted, judged it no ways absurd, without further Argument,
to ascribe his Knowledge and Assurance, and that of all the Saints,
hereunto in these Words, _Hereby know we, that we dwell in him, and
he in us, because he hath given us of his Spirit_, 1 John iv. 13. And
again, Ver. 6. It is _the Spirit that beareth Witness, because the
Spirit is Truth_.

Observe the Reason brought by him, _Because the Spirit is Truth_; of
whose Certainty and Infallibility I have heretofore spoken. [Sidenote:
_The Spirit contradicts not the Scripture, nor right Reason._] We then
trust to and confide in this Spirit, because we know, and certainly
believe, that it can only lead us aright, and never mislead us; and
from this certain Confidence it is that we affirm, That no Revelation
coming from it can ever contradict the Scripture’s Testimony, nor
right Reason: Not as making this a more certain Rule to ourselves,
but as condescending to such, who not discerning the Revelations of
the Spirit, as they proceed purely from God, will try them by these
_Mediums_. Yet those that have their Spiritual Senses, and can savour
the Things of the Spirit, as it were _in prima Instantia_, i. e. at
the first Blush, can discern them without, or before they apply them
either to Scripture or Reason: [Sidenote: _Natural Demonstrations from_
Astronomy _and_ Geometry.] Just as a good _Astronomer_ can calculate an
Eclipse infallibly, by which he can conclude (if the Order of Nature
continue, and some strange and unnatural Revolution intervene not)
there will be an Eclipse of the Sun or Moon such a Day, and such an
Hour; yet can he not persuade an ignorant Rustick of this, until he
visibly see it. So also a _Mathematician_ can infallibly know, by the
Rules of Art, that the three Angles of a right Triangle are equal to
two right Angles; yea, can know them more certainly than any Man by
Measure. And some _Geometrical Demonstrations_ are by all acknowledged
to be infallible, which can be scarcely discerned or proved by the
Senses; yet if a _Geometer_ be at the Pains to certify some ignorant
Man concerning the Certainty of his Art, by condescending to measure
it, and make it obvious to his Senses, it will not thence follow, that
that Measuring is so certain as the Demonstration itself; or that the
Demonstration would be uncertain without it.

§. XVI. But to make an End, I shall add one Argument to prove, That
this Inward, Immediate, Objective Revelation, which we have pleaded for
all along, is the only, sure, certain, and unmoveable Foundation of all
_Christian Faith_; which Argument, when well considered, I hope will
have Weight with all Sorts of Christians, and it is this:

[Sidenote: _Immediate Revelation the Immoveable Foundation of all
Christian Faith._] That which all Professors of _Christianity_, of
what Kind soever, are forced ultimately to recur unto, when pressed
to the last; That for and because of which all other Foundations are
recommended, and accounted worthy to be Believed, and without which
they are granted to be of no Weight at all, must needs be the only most
true, certain, and unmoveable Foundation of all Christian Faith.

But Inward, Immediate, Objective Revelation by the Spirit, is that
which all Professors of _Christianity_, of what Kind soever, are forced
ultimately to recur unto, _&c._

_Therefore_, &c.

The Proposition is so evident, that it will not be denied: The
Assumption shall be proved by Parts.

[Sidenote: Papists _Foundation, their Church and Tradition_, Why?]
And _First_, As to the _Papists_, they place their Foundation in the
Judgment of the _Church_ and _Tradition_. If we press them to say,
Why they believe as the _Church_ doth? Their answer is, _Because the
Church is always led by the infallible Spirit_. So here the _Leading
of the Spirit_ is the utmost Foundation. Again, if we ask them, Why we
ought to trust _Tradition_? They answer, _Because these Traditions were
delivered us by the Doctors and Fathers of the Church; which Doctors
and Fathers, by the Revelation of the Holy Ghost, commanded the Church
to observe them_. Here again all ends in the Revelation of the Spirit.

[Sidenote: Protestants _and_ Socinians _make the Scriptures their
Ground and Foundation_, Why?] And for the _Protestants_ and
_Socinians_, both which acknowledge the Scriptures to be the Foundation
and Rule of their Faith; the one as subjectively influenced by the
Spirit of God to use them; the other, as managing them with and by
their own Reason; ask both, or either of them, Why they trust in the
_Scriptures_, and take them to be their Rule? Their Answer is, _Because
we have in them the Mind of God delivered unto us by those to whom
these Things were inwardly, immediately, and objectively Revealed by
the Spirit of God_; and not because this or that Man wrote them, but
because the _Spirit of God_ dictated them.

[Sidenote: Christians _by Name, and not by Nature, hold Revelation
ceased, contrary to Scripture_.] It is strange then that Men should
render that so uncertain and dangerous to follow, upon which alone the
certain Ground and Foundation of their own Faith is built; or that they
should shut themselves out from that Holy Fellowship with God, which
only is enjoyed in the Spirit, in which we are commanded both to Walk
and Live.

If any who read these Things find themselves moved, by the Strength
of these Scripture-Arguments, to assent, and believe such Revelations
necessary; and yet find themselves Strangers to them, which, as I
observed in the Beginning, is the Cause that this is so much gainsaid
and contradicted, let them know, that it is not because it is ceased
to become the Privilege of every true Christian that they do not feel
it, but rather because they are not so much Christians by Nature as
by Name; and let such know, that the secret _Light_ which shines in
the Heart, and reproves Unrighteousness, is the small Beginning of
the Revelation of God’s Spirit, which was first sent into the World
to reprove it of Sin, _John_ xvi. 8. And as by forsaking Iniquity,
thou comest to be acquainted with that Heavenly Voice in thy Heart,
thou shalt feel, as the Old Man, or the Natural Man, that savoureth
not the Things of God’s Kingdom, is put off, with his evil and corrupt
Affections and Lusts; I say, thou shalt feel the New Man, or the
Spiritual Birth and Babe raised, which hath its Spiritual Senses, and
can see, feel, taste, handle, and smell the Things of the Spirit; but
till then the Knowledge of Things Spiritual is but as an Historical
Faith. [Sidenote: _Who wants his Sight sees not the Light._] But as the
Description of the Light of the Sun, or of curious Colours to a blind
Man, who, though of the largest Capacity, cannot so well understand
it by the most acute and lively Description, as a Child can by seeing
them; so neither can the Natural Man, of the largest Capacity, by the
best Words, even Scripture-words, so well understand the _Mysteries_ of
_God’s Kingdom_, as the least and weakest Child who tasteth them, by
having them Revealed _inwardly_ and _objectively_ by the Spirit.

Wait then for this in the small Revelation of that pure Light, which
first reveals Things more known; and as thou becomest fitted for it,
thou shalt receive more and more, and by a Living Experience easily
refute their Ignorance, who ask, How dost thou know that thou art
actuated by the Spirit of God? Which will appear to thee a Question no
less ridiculous, than to ask one whose Eyes are open, How he knows the
Sun shines at Noon-day? And though this be the surest and most certain
Way to answer all Objections; yet by what is above written it may
appear, that the Mouths of all such Opposers as deny this Doctrine may
be shut, by unquestionable and unanswerable Reasons.


Concerning the SCRIPTURES.

_From these Revelations of the Spirit of God to the Saints have
    proceeded the Scriptures of Truth, which contain_,

I. _A faithful Historical Account of the Actings of God’s People
    in divers Ages; with many singular and remarkable Providences
    attending them._

II. _A Prophetical Account of several Things, whereof some are already
    past, and some yet to come._

III. _A full and ample Account of all the chief Principles of the
    Doctrine of _Christ_, held forth in divers precious Declarations,
    Exhortations, and Sentences, which, by the moving of God’s Spirit,
    were at several Times, and upon sundry Occasions, spoken and
    written unto some Churches and their Pastors._

_Nevertheless, because they are only a Declaration of the Fountain,
    and not the Fountain itself, therefore they are not to be esteemed
    the principal Ground of all Truth and Knowledge, nor yet the
    Adequate Primary Rule of Faith and Manners. Yet because they give
    a true and faithful Testimony of the first Foundation, they are
    and may be esteemed a Secondary Rule, subordinate to the Spirit,
    from which they have all their Excellency and Certainty: For, as
    by the inward Testimony of the Spirit we do alone truly know them,
    so they testify, That the Spirit is that Guide by which the Saints
    are led into all Truth; therefore, according to the Scriptures,
    the Spirit is the First and Principal Leader.[45] Seeing then that
    we do therefore receive and believe the Scriptures because they
    proceeded from the Spirit, so the very same Reason is the Spirit
    more Originally and Principally the Rule, according to the received
    Maxim in the Schools, _Propter quod unumquodque est tale, illud
    ipsum est magis tale_: That for which a Thing is such, that Thing
    itself is more such._

[45] John 16. 13. Rom. 8. 14.

§. I. The former Part of this Proposition, though it needs no Apology
for itself, yet it is a good Apology for us, and will help to sweep
away that, among many other Calumnies, wherewith we are often loaded,
as if we were Vilifiers and Deniers of the Scriptures; for in that
which we affirm of them, it doth appear at what high Rate we value
them, accounting them, without all Deceit or Equivocation, the most
excellent Writings in the World; [Sidenote: _The Holy Scriptures
the most excellent Writings in the World._] to which not only no
other Writings are to be preferred, but even in divers Respects not
comparable thereto. For as we freely acknowledge that their Authority
doth not depend upon the Approbation or Canons of any Church or
Assembly; so neither can we subject them to the fallen, corrupt, and
defiled Reason of Man: And therein as we do freely agree with the
_Protestants_ against the Error of the _Romanists_, so on the other
Hand, we cannot go the Length of such _Protestants_ as make their
Authority to depend upon any Virtue or Power that is in the Writings
themselves; but we desire to ascribe all to that Spirit from which they

We confess indeed there wants not a Majesty in the Style, a Coherence
in the Parts, a good Scope in the Whole; but seeing these Things are
not discerned by the natural, but only by the spiritual Man, it is
the Spirit of God that must give us that Belief of the Scriptures
which may satisfy our Consciences; therefore some of the Chief
among _Protestants_, both in their particular Writings and publick
Confessions, are forced to acknowledge this.

[Sidenote: Calvin’s _Testimony that the Scripture certainly is from the
Spirit_.] Hence _Calvin_, though he saith he is able to prove that, if
there be a God in Heaven, these Writings have proceeded from him, yet
he concludes another Knowledge to be necessary. _Instit. Lib. 1. Cap.
7. Sect. 4._

“But if (saith he) we respect the Consciences, that they be not
daily molested with Doubts, and hesitate not at every Scruple, it
is requisite that this Persuasion which we speak of be taken higher
than human Reason, Judgment, or Conjecture; to wit, from the secret
Testimony of the Spirit.” _And again_, “To those who ask, that _we
prove unto them, by Reason, that _Moses_ and the _Prophets_ were
inspired of God to speak_, I answer, That the Testimony of the Holy
Spirit is more excellent than all Reason.” _And again_, “Let this
remain a firm Truth, that he only whom the Holy Spirit hath persuaded,
can repose himself on the Scripture with a true Certainty.” _And
lastly_, “This then is a judgment which cannot be begotten but by an
Heavenly Revelation, _&c._”

[Sidenote: _The Confession of the _French_ Churches._] The same is also
affirmed in the first publick Confession of the _French_ Churches,
published in the Year 1559. _Art. 4._ “We know these Books to be
canonical, and the most certain Rule of our Faith, not so much by the
common Accord and Consent of the Church, as by the Testimony and inward
Persuasion of the Holy Spirit.”

[Sidenote: _Churches of _Holland_ assert the same._] Thus also in the
5th Article of the Confession of Faith, of the Churches of _Holland_,
confirmed by the Synod of _Dort_. “We receive these Books only for holy
and canonical,--not so much because the Church receives and approves
them, as because the Spirit of God doth witness in our Hearts that they
are of God.”

[Sidenote: Westminster _Confession the same_.] And lastly, The
_Divines_, so called, at _Westminster_, who began to be afraid of, and
guard against the Testimony of the Spirit, because they perceived a
Dispensation beyond that which they were under beginning to dawn, and
to eclipse them; yet could they not get by this, though they have laid
it down neither so clearly, distinctly, nor honestly as they that went
before. It is in these Words, _Chap. 1. Sect. 5._ “Nevertheless our
full Persuasion and Assurance of the Infallible Truth thereof, is from
the inward Work of the Holy Spirit, bearing witness by and with the
Word in our Hearts.”

By all which it appeareth how necessary it is to seek the Certainty
of the Scriptures from the Spirit, and no where else. The infinite
Janglings and endless Contests of those that seek their Authority
elsewhere, do witness to the Truth hereof.

[Sidenote: _Apocrypha._] [46]For the Ancients themselves, even of the
first Centuries, were not agreed among themselves concerning them;
while some of them rejected Books which we approve, and others of them
approved those which some of us reject. It is not unknown to such as
are in the least acquainted with Antiquity, what great Contests are
concerning the Second Epistle of _Peter_, that of _James_, the Second
and Third of _John_, and the _Revelations_, which many, even very
ancient, deny to have been written by the beloved Disciple and Brother
of _James_, but by another of that Name. What should then become of
Christians, if they had not received that Spirit, and those spiritual
Senses, by which they know how to discern the _True_ from the _False?_
It is the Privilege of Christ’s Sheep indeed that they hear his Voice,
and refuse that of a Stranger; which Privilege being taken away, we are
left a Prey to all Manner of Wolves.

[46] _Conc. _Laod._ Can. 58. in Cod. _Ec. 163._ Conc. _Laod._ held in
the Year 364. excluded from the Canon _Eccl._ the Wisdom of _Solomon,
Judith, Tobias_, the _Maccabees_, which the Council of _Carthage_ held
in the Year 399. received._

§. II. Though then we do acknowledge the Scriptures to be very
heavenly and divine Writings, the Use of them to be very comfortable
and necessary to the Church of Christ, and that we also admire and
give Praise to the Lord, for his wonderful Providence in preserving
these Writings so pure and uncorrupted as we have them, through so
long a Night of Apostasy, to be a Testimony of his Truth against the
Wickedness and Abominations even of those whom he made instrumental in
preserving them, so that they have kept them to be a Witness against
themselves; [Sidenote: _The Scriptures are not the principal Ground of
Truth._] yet we may not call them the principal Fountain of all Truth
and Knowledge, nor yet the first adequate Rule of Faith and Manners;
because the principal Fountain of Truth must be the Truth itself;
_i. e._ that whole Certainty and Authority depends not upon another.
When we doubt of the Streams of any River or Flood, we recur to the
Fountain itself; and having found it, there we desist, we can go no
farther, because there it springs out of the Bowels of the Earth, which
are inscrutable. Even so the Writings and Sayings of all Men we must
bring to the Word of God, I mean the Eternal Word, and if they agree
hereunto, we stand there. For this Word always proceedeth, and doth
eternally proceed from God, in and by which the unsearchable Wisdom
of God, and unsearchable Counsel and Will conceived in the Heart of
God, is revealed unto us. That then the Scripture is not the principal
Ground of Faith and Knowledge, as it appears by what is above spoken,
so it is proved in the latter Part of the Proposition; which being
reduced to an Argument, runs thus:

That whereof the Certainty and Authority depends upon another, and
which is received as Truth because of its proceeding from another, is
not to be accounted the principal Ground and Origin of all Truth and

But the Scriptures Authority and Certainty depend upon the Spirit by
which they were dictated; and the Reason why they were received as
Truth is, because they proceeded from the Spirit:

Therefore they are not the principal Ground of Truth.

To confirm this Argument, I added the School Maxim, _Propter quod
unumquodque est tale, illud ipsum magis est tale_. Which Maxim, though
I confess it doth not hold universally in all Things, yet in this it
doth and will very well hold, as by applying it, as we have above
intimated, will appear.

[Sidenote: _Neither are they the primary Rule of Faith and Manners._]
The same Argument will hold as to the other Branch of the Proposition,
_That it is not the primary adequate Rule of Faith and Manners_; thus:

That which is not the Rule of my Faith in believing the Scriptures
themselves, is not the primary adequate Rule of Faith and Manners:

[Sidenote: _That the Spirit is the Rule._] But the Scripture is not,
nor can it be the Rule of that Faith by which I believe them, _&c._

Therefore, _&c._

But as to this Part, we shall produce divers Arguments hereafter. As to
what is affirmed, that the _Spirit, _and_ not the Scriptures, is the
Rule_, it is largely handled in the former Proposition; the Sum whereof
I shall subsume in one Argument, thus,

If by the Spirit we can only come to the true Knowledge of God; if by
the Spirit we are to be led into all Truth, and so be taught of all
Things; then the Spirit, and not the Scriptures, is the Foundation and
Ground of all Truth and Knowledge, and the primary Rule of Faith and

But the first is true: Therefore also the last.

Next, the very Nature of the Gospel itself declareth that the
Scriptures cannot be the _only_ and _chief Rule_ of _Christians_, else
there should be no Difference betwixt the _Law_ and the _Gospel_; as
from the Nature of the New Covenant, by divers Scriptures, described in
the former Proposition, is proved.

[Sidenote: _Wherein the Law and Gospel differ._] But besides these
which are before mentioned, herein doth the _Law_ and the _Gospel_
differ, in that the _Law_, being outwardly written, brings under
_Condemnation_, but hath _not Life_ in it to _save_; whereas the
_Gospel_, as it declares and makes manifest the Evil, so, being an
inward powerful Thing, it gives Power also to obey, and deliver from
the Evil. Hence it is called [Greek: Evangelian: Ευαγγελιον], which is
_glad Tidings_. The _Law_ or _Letter_, which is _without_ us, _Kills_;
but the _Gospel_, which is the _inward_ spiritual _Law_, gives _Life_;
for it consists not so much in Words as in Virtue. Wherefore such
as come to know it, and be acquainted with it, come to feel greater
Power over their Iniquities than all outward Laws or Rules can give
them. Hence the Apostle concludes, _Rom._ vi. 14. _Sin shall not have
Dominion over you: for ye are not under the Law, but under Grace_.
This Grace then that is _inward_, and not an _outward_ Law, is to be
the Rule of Christians. Hereunto the Apostle commends the Elders of
the Church, saying, _Acts_ xx. 32. _And now, Brethren, I commend you
to God, and to the Word of his Grace, which is able to build you up,
and to give you an Inheritance among all them which are sanctified._
He doth not commend them here to outward Laws or Writings, but to the
_Word of Grace_, which is inward; even the _spiritual Law_, which
makes free, as he elsewhere affirms, _Rom._ viii. 2. _The Law of the
Spirit of Life in Christ Jesus, hath made me free from the Law of Sin
and Death._ This spiritual Law is that which the Apostle declares he
preached and directed People unto, which was not outward, as by _Rom._
x. 8. is manifest; where distinguishing it from the Law, he saith,
_The Word is nigh thee, in thy Heart, and in thy Mouth; and this is the
Word of Faith which we preach_. From what is above said, I argue thus:

The principal Rule of _Christians_ under the Gospel is not an outward
Letter, nor Law outwardly written and delivered, but an inward
spiritual Law, _engraven in the Heart, the Law of the Spirit of Life,
the Word that is nigh in the Heart and in the Mouth_.

But the Letter of the Scripture is outward, of itself a dead Thing, a
mere Declaration of good Things, but not the Things themselves:

[Sidenote: _The Scripture not the Rule._] Therefore it is not, nor can
be, the chief or principal Rule of Christians.

§. III. _Thirdly_, That which is given to _Christians_ for a Rule and
Guide, must needs be so full, that it may clearly and distinctly guide
and order them in all Things and Occurrences that may fall out.

But in that there are numberless Things, with regard to their
Circumstances, which particular Christians may be concerned in, for
which there can be no particular Rule had in the Scriptures:

Therefore the Scriptures cannot be a Rule to them.

I shall give an Instance in two or three Particulars to prove this
Proposition. It is not to be doubted but some Men are particularly
called to some particular Services; their being not found in which,
though the Act be no general positive Duty, yet in so far as it may be
required of them, is a great Sin to omit; forasmuch as God is zealous
of his Glory, and every Act of Disobedience to his Will manifested,
is enough not only to hinder one greatly from that Comfort and inward
Peace which otherwise he might have, but also bringeth Condemnation.

As for Instance, Some are called to the Ministry of the Word: _Paul
_saith_, There was a Necessity upon him to preach the Gospel, wo unto
me, if I preach not._

If it be necessary that there be now Ministers of the Church, as well
as then, then there is the same Necessity upon some, more than upon
others, to occupy this Place; which Necessity, as it may be incumbent
upon particular Persons, the Scripture neither doth nor can declare.

[Sidenote: Object.] If it be said, _That the Qualifications of
a Minister are found in the Scripture, and by applying these
Qualifications to myself, I may know whether I be fit for such a Place
or not_:

[Sidenote: _Answ._] I answer, The Qualifications of a _Bishop_, or
_Minister_, as they are mentioned both in the Epistle to _Timothy_ and
_Titus_, are such as may be found in a private Christian; yea, which
ought in some Measure to be in every true Christian: So that this
giveth a Man no Certainty. Every Capacity to an Office giveth me not a
sufficient Call to it.

Next again, By what Rule shall I judge if I be so qualified? How do
I know that I am _sober_, _meek_, _holy_, _harmless_? Is it not the
Testimony of the Spirit in my _Conscience_ that must assure me hereof?
And suppose that I was qualified and called, yet what Scripture-rule
shall inform me, Whether it be my Duty to preach in this or that Place,
in _France_ or _England_, _Holland_ or _Germany_? Whether I shall
take up my Time in confirming the Faithful, reclaiming Hereticks, or
converting Infidels, as also in writing Epistles to this or that Church?

The general Rules of the Scripture, viz. _To be diligent in my Duty, to
do all to the Glory of God, and for the Good of his Church_, can give
me no Light in this Thing. Seeing two different Things may both have
a Respect to that Way, yet may I commit a great Error and Offence in
doing the one, when I am called to the other. If _Paul_, when his Face
was turned by the Lord toward _Jerusalem_, had gone back to _Achaia_,
or _Macedonia_, he might have supposed he could have done God more
acceptable Service in preaching and confirming the Churches, than in
being shut up in Prison in _Judea_; but would God have been pleased
herewith? Nay certainly. _Obedience is better than Sacrifice_; and it
is not our doing that which is good simply that pleaseth God, but that
Good which he willeth us to do. Every Member hath its particular Place
in the Body, as the Apostle sheweth, 1 _Cor._ xii. If then, I being
the Foot, should offer to exercise the Office of the Hand; or being
the Hand, that of the Tongue; my Service would be troublesome, and not
acceptable; and instead of helping the Body, I should make a _Schism_
in it. [Sidenote: _That which is good for one to do, may be sinful to
another._] So that that which is good for another to do, may be sinful
to me: For as Masters will have their Servants to obey them, according
to their good Pleasure, and not only in blindly doing that which may
seem to them to tend to their Master’s Profit, whereby it may chance
(the Master having Business both in the Field and in the House) that
the Servant that knows not his Master’s Will may go to the Field, when
it is the Mind of the Master he should stay and do the Business of the
House, would not this Servant then deserve a Reproof, for not answering
his Master’s Mind? And what Master is so sottish and careless, as,
having many Servants, to leave them in such Disorder as not to assign
each his particular Station, and not only the general Terms of doing
that which is profitable? which would leave them in various Doubts, and
certainly end in Confusion.

Shall we then dare to ascribe unto Christ, in the ordering of his
Church and Servants, that which in Man might justly be accounted
Disorder and Confusion? [Sidenote: _Diversities of Gifts._] The Apostle
sheweth this Distinction well, Rom. xii. 6, 7, 8. _Having then Gifts
differing according to the Grace that is given to us; whether Prophecy,
let us prophesy according to the Proportion of Faith; or Ministry, let
us wait on our Ministring; or he that teacheth, on Teaching; or he that
exhorteth, on Exhortation._ Now what Scripture-rule sheweth me that
I ought to exhort, rather than prophesy? or to minister, rather than
teach? Surely none at all. Many more Difficulties of this Kind occur in
the Life of a Christian.

[Sidenote: _Of Faith and Salvation can the Scripture assure thee?_]
Moreover, that which of all Things is most needful for him to know,
to wit, whether he really be in the Faith, and an Heir of Salvation,
or not, the Scripture can give him no Certainty in, neither can
it be a Rule to him. That this Knowledge is exceeding desirable
and comfortable all do unanimously acknowledge; besides that it is
especially commanded, 2 _Cor._ xiii. 5. _Examine yourselves whether ye
be in the Faith, prove yourselves; know ye not your own selves, how
that Jesus Christ is in you, except ye be Reprobates?_ And 2 _Pet._ i.
10. _Wherefore the rather, Brethren, give all Diligence to make your
Calling and Election sure._ Now I say, What Scripture-rule can assure
me that I have true Faith? That my Calling and Election is sure?

If it be said, _By comparing the Scripture-marks of true Faith with

I demand, Wherewith shall I make this Observation? What shall ascertain
me that I am not mistaken? It cannot be the Scripture: That is the
Matter under Debate.

If it be said, _My own Heart_:

How unfit a Judge is it in its own Case? And how like to be partial,
especially if it be yet unrenewed? Doth not the Scripture say, that
_it is deceitful above all Things_? [Sidenote: _The Heart of Man
deceitful._] I find the Promises, I find the Threatenings in the
Scripture; but who telleth me that the one belongs to me more than the
other? The Scripture gives me a mere Declaration of these Things, but
makes no Application; so that the Assumption must be of my own making,
thus; as for Example: I find this Proposition in Scripture;

_He that believes, shall be saved_: Thence I draw the Assumption.

But I, _Robert, believe_:

Therefore, _I shall be saved_.

The _Minor_ is of my own making, not expressed in the Scripture; and
so a human Conclusion, not a divine Position; so that my Faith and
Assurance here is not built upon a Scripture Proposition, but upon an
human Principle; which, unless I be sure of elsewhere, the Scripture
gives me no Certainty in the Matter.

Again, If I should pursue the Argument further, and seek a new _Medium_
out of the Scripture, the same Difficulty would occur: Thus,

He that hath the true and certain Marks of true Faith, hath true Faith:

But I have those Marks:

_Therefore_ I have true Faith.

For the Assumption is still here of my own making, and is not found
in the Scriptures; and by Consequence the Conclusion can be no
better, since it still followeth the weaker Proposition. [Sidenote:
_The inward Testimony of the Spirit the Seal of Scripture-Promises._]
This is indeed so pungent, that the best of _Protestants_, who
plead for this Assurance, ascribe it to the inward Testimony of the
Spirit, as _Calvin_, in that large Citation, quoted in the Former
Proposition. So that, not to seek farther into the Writings of the
primitive _Protestants_, which are full of such Expressions, even the
_Westminster_ Confession of Faith affirmeth, _Chap._ 18. _Sect._ 12.
“This Certainty is not a bare Conjecture and probable Persuasion,
grounded upon fallible Hope, but an infallible Assurance of Faith,
founded upon the Divine Truth of the Promise of Salvation; the inward
Evidences of these Graces, unto which these Promises are made; the
Testimony of the Spirit of Adoption, witnessing to our Spirits that
we are the Children of God; which Spirit is the _Earnest_ of our
_Inheritance, whereby we are sealed to the Day of Redemption_.”

Moreover, the Scripture itself, wherein we are so earnestly pressed
to seek after this Assurance, doth not at all affirm itself a Rule
sufficient to give it, but wholly ascribeth it to the Spirit, as _Rom._
viii. 16. _The Spirit itself beareth Witness with our Spirit, that we
are the Children of God._ 1 John iv. 13. _Hereby know we that we dwell
in him, and he in us, because he hath given us of his Spirit_; and
Chap. v. 6. _And it is the Spirit that beareth Witness, because the
Spirit is Truth._

§. IV. [Sidenote: _That the Scriptures are not the chief Rule._]
_Lastly_, That cannot be the only, principal, nor chief Rule, which
doth not universally reach every Individual that needeth it to produce
the necessary Effect; and from the Use of which, either by some
innocent and sinless Defect, or natural, yet harmless and blameless
Imperfection, many who are within the Compass of the visible Church,
and may, without Absurdity, yea, with great Probability, be accounted
of the Elect, are necessarily excluded, and that either wholly, or
at least from the immediate Use thereof. [Sidenote: _1. Deaf People
Children, and Idiots instanced._] But it so falls out frequently
concerning the Scriptures, in the Case of deaf People, Children, and
Idiots, who can by no Means have the Benefit of the Scriptures. Shall
we then affirm, that they are without any Rule to God-ward, or that
they are all damned? As such an Opinion is in itself very absurd,
and inconsistent both with the Justice and Mercy of God, so I know no
sound Reason can be alledged for it. Now if we may suppose any such
to be under the _New Covenant Dispensation_, as I know none will deny
but that we may suppose it without any Absurdity, we cannot suppose
them without some Rule and Means of Knowledge; seeing it is expresly
affirmed, _They shall all be taught of God_, John vi. 45. _And they
shall all know me from the least to the greatest_, Heb. viii. 11.

But Secondly, Though we were rid of this Difficulty, how many
illiterate and yet good Men are there in the Church of God, who cannot
read a Letter in their own Mother Tongue? Which Imperfection, though
it be inconvenient, I cannot tell whether we may safely affirm it to
be sinful. These can have no immediate Knowledge of the Rule of their
Faith; so their Faith must needs depend upon the Credit of other
Men’s Reading or Relating it unto them; where either the altering,
adding, or omitting of a little Word may be a Foundation in the poor
Hearer of a very dangerous Mistake, whereby he may either continue in
some Iniquity ignorantly, or believe a Lie confidently. [Sidenote:
2. Papists _conceal the Second Commandment from the People._] As
for Example, The _Papists_ in all their Catechisms, and publick
Exercises of Examinations towards the People, have boldly cut away
the Second Command, because it seems so expresly to strike against
their Adoration and Use of Images; whereas many of these People,
in whom by this Omission this false Opinion is fostered, are under
a simple Impossibility, or at least a very great Difficulty, to be
outwardly informed of this Abuse. But further; suppose all could read
the Scriptures in their own Language; where is there one of a Thousand
that hath that thorough Knowledge of the Original Languages, in which
they are written, so as in that Respect immediately to receive the
Benefit of them? [Sidenote: 3. _The Uncertainty of the _Interpreters_
of the Scripture, and their Adulterating it._] Must not all these
here depend upon the Honesty and Faithfulness of the Interpreter?
Which how uncertain it is for a Man to build his Faith upon, the
many Corrections, Amendments, and various Essays, which even among
_Protestants_ have been used (whereof the latter have constantly blamed
and corrected the former, as Guilty of Defects and Errors) doth
sufficiently declare. And that even the last Translators in the vulgar
Languages need to be corrected (as I could prove at large, were it
proper in this Place) learned Men do confess.

But last of all, there is no less Difficulty occurs even to those
skilled in the Original Languages, who cannot so immediately receive
the Mind of the Authors in these Writings, as that their Faith doth
not at least obliquely depend upon the Honesty and Credit of the
Transcribers, since the Original Copies are granted by all not to be
now extant. [Sidenote: Jerome _Epist. 28. ad_ Lucin. _p. 247._] Of
which Transcribers _Jerome_ in his Time complained, saying, _That
they wrote not what they found, but what they understood._ [Sidenote:
_Epiph. in Anachor. Tom. Oper._] And _Epiphanius_ saith, _That in the
good and correct Copies of _Luke_ it was written, that _Christ Wept_,
and that _Irenæus_ doth cite it; but that the _Catholicks_ blotted it
out, fearing lest Hereticks should have abused it._ Other Fathers also
declare, _That whole Verses were taken out of _Mark_, because of the_

[Sidenote: _The various Readings of the _Hebrew_ Character_, &c.] But
further, the various Readings of the _Hebrew Character_ by Reason
of the _Points_, which some plead for, as coæval with the first
Writings, which others, with no less Probability, alledge to be a
later Invention; the Disagreement of divers Citations of Christ and
the Apostles with those Passages in the Old Testament they appeal
to; the great Controversy among the Fathers, whereof some highly
approve the _Greek Septuagint_, decrying and rendering very doubtful
the _Hebrew Copy_, as in many Places vitiated, and altered by the
_Jews_; other some, and particularly _Jerome_, exalting the Certainty
of the _Hebrew_, and rejecting, yea, even deriding the History of the
_Septuagint_, which the Primitive Church chiefly made use of; and
some Fathers that lived Centuries before him, affirmed to be a most
certain Thing; and the many various Readings in divers Copies of the
_Greek_, and the great Altercations among the Fathers of the first
three Centuries, who had greater Opportunity to be better informed
than we can now lay claim to, concerning the Books to be admitted or
rejected, as is above observed; I say, all these and much more which
might be alledged, puts the Minds even of the Learned into infinite
Doubts, Scruples, and inextricable Difficulties: Whence we may very
safely conclude, that Jesus Christ, who promised to be _always_ with
his Children, to lead them into _all Truth_, to guard them against the
Devices of the Enemy, and to establish their Faith upon an _unmoveable
Rock_, left them not to be principally ruled by that, which was subject
in itself to many Uncertainties: And therefore he gave them his
_Spirit_ as their principal Guide, which neither Moths nor Time can
wear out, nor Transcribers nor Translators corrupt; which none are so
young, none so illiterate, none in so remote a Place but they may come
to be reached, and rightly informed by it.

Through and by the Clearness which that Spirit gives us, it is that we
are only best rid of those Difficulties that occur to us concerning
the Scriptures. The real and undoubted Experience whereof I myself
have been a Witness of, with great Admiration of the Love of God to
his Children in these latter Days: [Sidenote: _Wrong Translations of
Scripture discerned in the Spirit by the Unlearned in Letters._] For
I have known some of my Friends who profess the same Faith with me,
faithful Servants of the Most High God, and full of Divine Knowledge
of his Truth, as it was immediately and inwardly revealed to them
by the Spirit, from a true and living Experience, who not only were
ignorant of the _Greek_ and _Hebrew_, but even some of them could not
read their own vulgar Language, who being pressed by their Adversaries
with some Citations out of the _English_ Translation, and finding
them to disagree with the Manifestation of Truth in their own Hearts,
have boldly affirmed the Spirit of God never said so, and that it
was certainly wrong; for they did not believe that any of the holy
Prophets or Apostles had ever written so; which when I on this Account
seriously examined, I really found to be Errors and Corruptions of the
Translators; who (as in most Translations) do not so much give us the
genuine Signification of the Words, as strain them to express that
which comes nearest to that Opinion and Notion they have of Truth. And
this seemed to me to suit very well with that Saying of _Augustine,
Epist._ 19. _ad Hier. Tom._ ii. Fol. 14. after he has said, “That he
gives only that Honour to those Books which are called _Canonical_, as
to believe that the Authors thereof did in Writing not err,” he adds,
“And if I shall meet with any Thing in these Writings that seemeth
repugnant to Truth, I shall not doubt to say, that either the Volume is
faulty or erroneous; that the Expounder hath not reached what was said;
or that I have in no wise understood it.” So that he supposes that in
the Transcription and Translation there may be Errors.

§. V. [Sidenote: Object.] If it be then asked me, _Whether I think
hereby to render the Scriptures altogether uncertain, or useless?_

[Sidenote: _Answ._] I answer; Not at all. The Proposition itself
declares how much I esteem them; and provided that to the Spirit from
which they came be but granted that Place the Scriptures themselves
give it, I do freely concede to the Scriptures the second Place, even
whatsoever they say of themselves; which the Apostle _Paul_ chiefly
mentions in two Places, _Rom._ xv. 4. _Whatsoever Things were written
aforetime, were written for our Learning, that we through Patience and
Comfort of the Scriptures might have Hope._ 2 Tim. iii. 15, 16, 17.
_The Holy Scriptures are able to make wise unto Salvation, through
Faith which is in Jesus Christ. All Scripture given by Inspiration of
God, is profitable for Correction, for Instruction in Righteousness,
that the Man of God may be perfect, throughly furnished unto every good

For though God doth principally and chiefly lead us by his Spirit,
yet he sometimes conveys his Comfort and Consolation to us through
his Children, whom he raises up and inspires to speak or write a Word
in Season, [Sidenote: _The Saints mutual Comfort is the same Spirit
in all._] whereby the Saints are made Instruments in the Hand of the
Lord to strengthen and encourage one another, which doth also tend
to perfect and make them wise unto Salvation; and such as are led by
the Spirit cannot neglect, but do naturally love, and are wonderfully
cherished by, that which proceedeth from the same Spirit in another;
because such mutual Emanations of the heavenly Life tend to quicken the
Mind, when at any Time it is overtaken with Heaviness. _Peter_ himself
declares this to have been the End of his Writing, 2 _Pet._ i. 12, 13.
_Wherefore I will not be negligent to put you always in Remembrance of
these Things, though ye know them, and be established in the present
Truth; yea, I think it meet, as long as I am in this Tabernacle, to
stir you up, by putting you in Remembrance._

God is Teacher of his People himself; and there is nothing more
express, than that such as are under the New Covenant, _need no Man to
teach them_: Yet it was a Fruit of Christ’s Ascension to send Teachers
and Pastors for perfecting of the Saints. So that the same Work is
ascribed to the Scriptures as to Teachers; the one to make the Man of
God perfect, the other for the Perfection of the Saints.

As then Teachers are not to go before the teaching of God himself under
the New Covenant, but to follow after it; neither are they to rob us
of that great Privilege which Christ hath purchased unto us by his
_Blood_; so neither is the Scripture to go before the teaching of the
Spirit, or to rob us of it.

[Sidenote: _Answ._ 2.] _Secondly_, God hath seen meet that herein
we should, [Sidenote: _The Scriptures a Looking-Glass._] as in a
Looking-Glass, see the Conditions and Experiences of the Saints of old;
that finding our Experience answer to theirs, we might thereby be the
more confirmed and comforted, and our Hope of obtaining the same End
strengthened; that observing the Providences attending them, seeing
the Snares they were liable to, and beholding their Deliverances, we
may thereby be made wise unto Salvation, and seasonably reproved and
instructed in Righteousness.

[Sidenote: _The Scriptures Work and Service._] This is the great Work
of the Scriptures, and their Service to us, that we may witness them
fulfilled _in_ us, and so discern the Stamp of God’s Spirit and Ways
upon them, by the inward Acquaintance we have with the same Spirit and
Work in our Hearts. The Prophecies of the Scriptures are also very
comfortable and profitable unto us, as the same Spirit enlightens us
to observe them fulfilled, and to be fulfilled; for in all this it
is to be observed, that it is only the Spiritual Man that can make a
right Use of them: They are able to make the Man of God perfect (so
it is not the Natural Man) and whatsoever was written aforetime, was
written for _our Comfort_, [_our_] that are the Believers, [_our_]
that are the Saints; concerning such the Apostle speaks: For as for the
others, the Apostle _Peter_ plainly declares, that the _Unstable and
Unlearned wrest them to their own Destruction_: These were they that
were unlearned in the Divine and Heavenly Learning of the Spirit, not
in Human and School Literature; in which we may safely presume that
_Peter_ himself, being a Fisherman, had no Skill; for it may with great
Probability, yea Certainty, be affirmed, [Sidenote: _Logick._] that
he had no Knowledge of _Aristotle_’s Logick, which both _Papists_ and
_Protestants_ now,[47] degenerating from the Simplicity of Truth, make
the Handmaid of Divinity, as they call it, and a necessary Introduction
to their carnal, natural, and human Ministry. By the infinite obscure
Labours of which Kind of Men, intermixing their Heathenish Stuff, the
Scripture is rendered at this Day of so little Service to the simple
People: Whereof if _Jerome_ complained in his Time, now twelve Hundred
Years ago, _Jerome_ Epist. 134. _ad Cypr._ Tom. 3. saying, _It is wont
to befal the most Part of learned Men, that it is harder to understand
their Expositions, than the Things which they go about to expound_:
what may we say now, considering those great Heaps of Commentaries
since, in Ages yet far more corrupted?

[47] 1675.

§. VI. [Sidenote: _The Scriptures a Secondary Rule._] In this Respect
above-mentioned then we have shewn what Service and Use the Holy
Scriptures, as managed in and by the Spirit, are of to the Church of
God; wherefore we do account them a Secondary Rule. Moreover, because
they are commonly acknowledged by all to have been written by the
Dictates of the Holy Spirit, and that the Errors which may be supposed
by the Injury of Times to have slipt in, are not such but that there
is a sufficient clear Testimony left to all the Essentials of the
Christian Faith; we do look upon them as the only fit outward judge
of Controversies among Christians; and that whatsoever Doctrine is
contrary unto their Testimony, may therefore justly be rejected as
false. And for our Parts, we are very willing that all our Doctrines
and Practices be tried by them; which we never refused, nor ever
shall, in all Controversies with our Adversaries, as the judge and
Test. We shall also be very willing to admit it as a positive certain
Maxim, _That whatsoever any do, pretending to the Spirit, which is
contrary to the Scriptures, be accounted and reckoned a Delusion of
the Devil_. For as we never lay claim to the Spirit’s Leadings, that
we may cover ourselves in any Thing that is evil; so we know, that as
every Evil contradicts the Scriptures, so it doth also the Spirit in
the first Place, from which the Scriptures came, and whose Motions
can never contradict one another, though they may appear sometimes to
be contradictory to the blind Eye of the natural Man, as _Paul_ and
_James_ seem to contradict one another.

Thus far we have shewn both what we believe, and what we believe
not, concerning the Holy Scriptures, hoping we have given them their
due Place. But since they that will needs have them to be the only,
certain, and principal Rule, want not some Shew of Arguments, even from
the Scripture itself (though it no where calls itself so) by which they
labour to prove their Doctrine; I shall briefly lay them down by Way of
Objections, and answer them, before I make an End of this Matter.

§. VII. [Sidenote: Obj. 1.] Their first Objection is usually drawn from
_Isaiah_ viii. 20. _To the Law and to the Testimony; if they speak not
according to this Word, it is because there is no Light in them._ Now
this _Law_, _Testimony_, and _Word_, they plead to be the Scriptures.

[Sidenote: _Answ._] To which I answer; That that is to beg the Thing
in Question, and remains yet unproved. Nor do I know for what Reason
we may not safely affirm this _Law_ and _Word_ to be _Inward_: But
suppose it was _Outward_, it proves not the Case at all for them,
neither makes it against us; for it may be confessed, without any
Prejudice to our Cause, that the outward Law was more particularly to
the _Jews_ a Rule, and more principally than to us; seeing their Law
was outward and literal, but ours, under the New Covenant (as hath been
already said) is expresly affirmed to be _Inward_ and _Spiritual_; so
that this Scripture is so far from making against us, that it makes
for us. [Sidenote: _To try all Things, by what?_] For if the _Jews_
were directed to try all Things by their Law, which was without them,
written in Tables of Stone; then if we will have this Advice of the
Prophet to reach us, we must make it hold parallel to that Dispensation
of the Gospel which we are under: So that we are to try all Things, in
the first Place, by that _Word of Faith_ which is preached unto us,
which the Apostle saith is _in the Heart_; and by that Law which God
hath given us, which the Apostle saith also expresly _is written and
placed in the Mind_.

_Lastly_, If we look to this Place according to the _Greek_
Interpretation of the _Septuagint_, our Adversaries shall have nothing
from thence to carp; yea, it will favour us much; for there it is said,
that _the Law is given us for an Help_; which very well agrees with
what is above asserted.

[Sidenote: Obj. 2.] Their second Objection is from _John_ v. 39.
_Search the Scriptures_, &c.

_Here, _say they_, we are commanded, _by Christ himself_, to search the

[Sidenote: _Answ. 1._] I answer, _First_, That the Scriptures ought to
be searched, we do not at all deny; but are very willing to be tried by
them, as hath been above declared: But the Question is, _Whether they
be the Only and Principal Rule?_ Which this is so far from proving,
that it proveth the contrary; [Sidenote: _Search the Scripture_, &c.]
for Christ checks them here for too high an Esteem of the Scriptures,
and neglecting of him that was to be preferred before them, and to
whom they bore Witness, as the following Words declare; _For in them
ye think ye have eternal Life, and they are they which testify of me:
and ye will not come unto me, that ye might have Life._ This shews,
that while they thought they had Eternal Life in the Scriptures, they
neglected to come unto Christ to have Life, of which the Scriptures
bore witness. This answers well to our Purpose, since our Adversaries
now do also exalt the Scriptures, and think to have Life in them; which
is no more than to look upon them as the only principal Rule and Way
to Life, and yet refuse to come unto the Spirit of which they testify,
even the inward spiritual Law, which could give them Life: So that
the Cause of this People’s Ignorance and Unbelief was not their Want
of Respect to the Scriptures, which though they knew, and had an high
Esteem of, yet Christ testifies in the former Verses, that they had
neither _seen the Father, nor heard his Voice at any Time; neither
had his Word abiding in them_; which had they then had, then they had
believed in the Son. [Sidenote: _Answ. 2._] Moreover, that Place may
be taken in the Indicative Mood, _Ye search the Scriptures_; which
Interpretation the _Greek_ Word will bear, and so _Pasor_ translateth
it: Which by the Reproof following, seemeth also to be the more genuine
Interpretation, as _Cyrillus_ long ago hath observed.

§. VIII. [Sidenote: Obj. 3.] Their third Objection is from these Words,
_Acts_ xvii. 11. _These were more noble than those in Thessalonica, in
that they received the Word with all Readiness of Mind, and searched
the Scriptures daily, whether those Things were so._

[Sidenote: _Answ. 1._] _Here, _say they_, the _Bereans_ are commended
for searching the Scriptures, and making them the Rule._

I answer; That the Scriptures either are the principal or only Rule,
will not at all follow from this; neither will their searching the
Scriptures, or being commended for it, infer any such Thing: For we
recommend and approve the Use of them in that Respect as much as any;
yet will it not follow, that we affirm them to be the principal and
only Rule.

[Sidenote: _Answ. 2._] _Secondly_, It is to be observed that these
were the _Jews_ of _Berea_, to whom these Scriptures, which were the
Law and the Prophets, were more particularly a Rule; [Sidenote: _The_
Bereans _searching the Scriptures, makes them not the only Rule to try
Doctrines._] and the Thing under Examination was, whether the Birth,
Life, Works, and Sufferings of Christ, did answer to the Prophecies
concerning him; so that it was most proper for them, being _Jews_, to
examine the Apostle’s Doctrine by the Scriptures; seeing he pleaded
it to be a fulfilling of them. It is said nevertheless, in the first
Place, That _they received the Word with Chearfulness_; and in the
second Place, _They searched the Scriptures_: Not that they searched
the Scriptures, and then received the Word; for then could they not
have prevailed to convert them, had they not first minded the _Word
abiding in them_, which opened their Understandings; no more than the
_Scribes_ and _Pharisees_, who (as in the former Objection we observed)
searched the Scriptures, and exalted them, and yet remained in their
Unbelief, because they had not the _Word abiding in them_.

[Sidenote: _Answ. 3._] But _Lastly_, If this Commendation of the
_Jewish Bereans_ might infer that the Scriptures were the only and
principal Rule to try the Apostle’s Doctrine by, what should have
become of the _Gentiles_? How should they ever have come to have
received the Faith of Christ, who neither knew the Scriptures, nor
believed them? [Sidenote: _The _Athenians_ instanced._] We see in the
End of the same Chapter, how the Apostle, preaching to the _Athenians_,
took another Method, and directed them to somewhat of _God within_
themselves, that they might _feel after him_. He did not go about to
proselyte them to the _Jewish Religion_, and to the Belief of the _Law_
and the _Prophets_, and from thence to prove the coming of Christ;
nay, he took a nearer Way. Now certainly the principal and only Rule
is not different; one to the _Jews_, and another to the _Gentiles_;
but is _Universal_, reaching both: Though secondary and subordinate
Rules and Means may be various, and diversly suited, according as the
People they are used to are stated and circumstanced: Even so we see
that the Apostle to the _Athenians_ used a Testimony of one of their
own Poets, which he judged would have Credit with them; and no doubt
such Testimonies, whose Authors they esteemed, had more Weight with
them than all the Sayings of _Moses_ and the _Prophets_, whom they
neither knew nor would have cared for. Now because the Apostle used
the Testimony of a Poet to the _Athenians_, will it therefore follow,
he made that the principal or only Rule to try his Doctrine by? So
neither will it follow, that though he made use of the Scriptures to
the _Jews_, as being a Principle already believed by them, to try
his Doctrine, that from thence the Scriptures may be accounted the
principal or only Rule.

§. IX. The last, and that which at first View seems to be the greatest
Objection, is this:

[Sidenote: Obj. 4.] _If the Scripture be not the adequate, principal,
and only Rule, then it would follow that the Scripture is not complete,
nor the Canon filled; that if Men be now immediately led and ruled by
the Spirit, they may add new Scriptures of equal Authority with the
Old; whereas every one that adds is cursed: Yea, what Assurance have
we, but at this Rate every one may bring in a new Gospel according to
his Fancy?_

[Sidenote: _Answ._] The dangerous Consequences insinuated in this
Objection were fully answered in the latter Part of the last
Proposition, in what was said a little before, offering freely to
disclaim all pretended Revelations contrary to the Scriptures.

[Sidenote: Obj. 1.] But if it be urged, _That it is not enough to deny
these Consequences, if they naturally follow from your Doctrine of
Immediate Revelation, and denying the Scripture to be the only Rule_:

[Sidenote: _Answ. 1._] I answer; We have proved both these Doctrines
to be true and necessary, according to the Scriptures themselves; and
therefore to fasten evil Consequences upon them, which we make appear
do not follow, is not to accuse us, but Christ and his Apostles, who
preached them.

[Sidenote: _Answ. 2._] But _Secondly_, We have shut the Door upon all
such Doctrine in this very Position; affirming, _That the Scriptures
give a full and ample Testimony to all the principal Doctrines of the
Christian Faith_. For we do firmly believe that there is no other
Gospel or Doctrine to be preached, but that which was delivered by the
Apostles; and do freely subscribe to that Saying, [48]_Let him that
preacheth any other Gospel, than that which hath been already preached
by the Apostles, and according to the Scriptures, be accursed_.

[48] Gal. i. 8.

[Sidenote: _A new Revelation is not a new Gospel._] So we distinguish
betwixt a Revelation of a _new Gospel_, and _new Doctrines_, and a
_new Revelation_ of the _good old Gospel_ and _Doctrines_; the last we
plead for, but the first we utterly deny. For we firmly believe, That
_no other Foundation can any Man lay, than that which is laid already_.
But that this Revelation is necessary we have already proved; and this
Distinction doth sufficiently guard us against the Hazard insinuated in
the Objection.

[Sidenote: _Books Canonical._] As to the _Scriptures_ being a _filled
Canon_, I see no Necessity of believing it. And if these Men, that
believe the Scriptures to be the only Rule, will be consistent with
their own Doctrine, they must needs be of my Judgment; seeing it is
simply impossible to prove the Canon by the Scriptures. For it cannot
be found in any Book of the Scriptures, that these Books, and just
these, and no other, are Canonical, as all are forced to acknowledge;
how can they then evite this Argument?

That which cannot be proved by Scripture is no necessary Article of

But the Canon of the Scripture; to wit, that there are so many Books
precisely, neither more nor less, cannot be proved by Scripture:

_Therefore_, it is no necessary Article of Faith.

[Sidenote: Obj. 2.] If they should allege; _That the admitting of
any other Books to be now written by the same Spirit might infer the
Admission of new Doctrines_:

I deny that Consequence; for the Principal or Fundamental Doctrines
of the Christian Religion are contained in the tenth Part of the
Scripture; but it will not follow thence that the Rest are impertinent,
or useless. [Sidenote: _Books lost._] If it should please God to bring
to us any of those Books, which by the Injury of Time are lost, which
are mentioned in the Scripture; as, _The Prophecy of_ Enoch, _the Book
of_ Nathan, _&c._ or, _the Third Epistle of _Paul_ to the_ Corinthians;
I see no Reason why we ought not to receive them, and place them with
the Rest. That which displeaseth me is, that Men should first affirm
that the Scripture is the only and principal Rule, and yet make that a
great Article of Faith into which the Scripture can give us no Light.

As for Instance: How shall a _Protestant_ prove by Scripture, to such
as deny the Epistle of _James_ to be authentick, that it ought to be

_First_, If he would say, _Because it contradicts not the Rest_,
(besides that there is no Mention of it in any of the Rest) perhaps
these Men think it doth contradict _Paul_ in Relation to _Faith_ and
_Works_. But, if that should be granted, it would as well follow, that
every Writer that contradicts not the Scripture, should be put into the
Canon; and by this Means these Men fall into a greater Absurdity than
they fix upon us: For thus they would equal every one the Writings of
their own Sect with the Scriptures; for I suppose they judge their
own Confession of Faith doth not contradict the Scriptures: Will it
therefore follow that it should be bound up with the Bible? And yet it
seems impossible, according to their Principles, to bring any better
Argument to prove the Epistle of _James_ to be Authentick. [Sidenote:
_Whether the Epistle of _James_ be authentick, and how to know it?_]
There is then this unavoidable Necessity to say, We know it by the
same Spirit from which it was written; or otherwise to step back to
_Rome_, and say, We know by Tradition that the Church hath declared it
to be Canonical; and the Church is Infallible. Let them find a Mean, if
they can. So that out of this Objection we shall draw an unanswerable
Argument _ad Hominem_, to our Purpose.

That which cannot assure me concerning an Article of Faith necessary to
be believed, is not the primary, adequate, only Rule of Faith, _&c._

Therefore, _&c._

I prove the Assumption thus:

That which cannot assure me concerning the Canon of the Scripture,
to wit, that such Books are only to be admitted, and the _Apocrypha_
excluded, cannot assure me of this:

Therefore, _&c._

[Sidenote: Obj. 3.] And _Lastly_, As to these Words, _Rev._ xxii. 18.
_That if any Man shall add unto these Things, God shall add unto him
the Plagues that are written in this Book_; [Sidenote: _Answ._] I
desire they will shew me how it relates to any Thing else than to that
particular Prophecy. It saith not, _Now the Canon of the Scripture
is filled up, no Man is to write more from the Spirit_; yea, do not
all confess that there have been Prophecies and true Prophets since?
The _Papists_ deny it not. And do not the _Protestants_ affirm, that
_John Hus_ prophesied of the _Reformation?_ Was he therefore cursed?
Or did he therein Evil? I could give many other Examples, confessed by
themselves. [Sidenote: _What it means to add to the Scriptures._] But,
moreover, the same was in Effect commanded long before, _Prov._ xxx. 6.
_Add thou not unto his Words, lest he reprove thee, and thou be found a
Liar_: Yet how many Books of the Prophets were written after? And the
same was said by _Moses_, Deut. iv. 2. _Ye shall not add unto the Word
which I command you; neither shall ye diminish aught from it._ So that,
though we should extend that of the _Revelation_ beyond the particular
Prophecy of that Book, it cannot be understood but of a new Gospel,
or new Doctrines, or of restraining Man’s Spirit, that he mix not his
Human Words with the Divine; and not of _a new Revelation of the Old_,
as we have said before.


Concerning the Condition of MAN in the FALL.

_All _Adam_’s Posterity, or Mankind, both _Jews_ and _Gentiles_, as to
    the first _Adam_, or Earthly Man, is fallen, degenerated, and dead;
    deprived of the Sensation or Feeling of this _Inward Testimony_
    or Seed of God; _[49]_and is subject unto the Power, Nature, and
    Seed of the Serpent, which he soweth in Men’s Hearts, while they
    abide in this natural and corrupted Estate: From whence it comes,
    that not only their Words and Deeds, but all their Imaginations,
    are Evil perpetually in the Sight of God, as proceeding from
    this depraved and wicked Seed. Man therefore, as he is in this
    State, can know Nothing aright; yea, his Thoughts and Conceptions
    concerning God and Things _Spiritual_, until he be disjoined from
    this Evil Seed, and united to the _Divine Light_, are unprofitable
    both to himself and others. Hence are rejected the _Socinian_ and
    _Pelagian_ Errors, in exalting a Natural Light; as also of the
    _Papists_, and most _Protestants_, who affirm, _That Man, without
    the true Grace of God, may be a true Minister of the Gospel_.
    Nevertheless, this Seed is not imputed to Infants, until by
    Transgression they actually join themselves therewith; _[50]_for
    they are by Nature _the Children of Wrath_, who walk according to
    the _Power of the Prince of the Air, the Spirit that now worketh
    in the Children of Disobedience_, having their Conversation in the
    Lusts of the Flesh, fulfilling the Desires of the Flesh, and of the

[49] Rom. 5. 12, 15.

[50] Ephes. 2.

§. I. Hitherto we have discoursed how the True Knowledge of God is
attained and preserved; also of what Use and Service the Holy Scripture
is to the Saints.

We come now to examine _the State and Condition of Man as he stands in
the Fall_; _what his Capacity and Power is_; _and how far he is able,
as of himself, to advance in Relation to the Things of God_. Of this
we touched a little in the Beginning of the second Proposition; but
the full, right, and thorough Understanding of it is of great Use and
Service; because from the Ignorance and Altercations that have been
about it, there have arisen great and dangerous Errors, both on the one
Hand and on the other. While some do so far exalt the Light of Nature,
or the Faculty of the Natural Man, as capable of himself, by Virtue of
the inward Will, Faculty, Light and Power, that pertains to his Nature,
to follow that which is good, and make real Progress towards Heaven.
And of these are the _Pelagians_, and _Semi-Pelagians_ of Old; and of
late the _Socinians_, and divers others among the _Papists_. Others
again will needs run into another Extreme, [Sidenote: Augustine’s _Zeal
against Pelagius_.] (to whom _Augustine_, among the Ancients, first
made Way in his declining Age, through the Heat of his Zeal against
_Pelagius_) not only confessing Man uncapable of himself to do Good,
and prone to Evil; but that in his very Mother’s Womb, and before he
commits any actual Transgression, he is contaminate with a real Guilt,
whereby he deserves eternal Death: In which Respect they are not afraid
to affirm, _That many poor Infants are Eternally Damned, and for ever
endure the Torments of Hell_. Therefore the God of Truth, having now
again revealed his Truth (that good and even Way) by his own Spirit,
hath taught us to avoid both these Extremes.

That then which our Proposition leads to treat of is,

[Sidenote: I.] First, _What the Condition of Man is in the Fall; and
how far uncapable to meddle in the Things of God_.

[Sidenote: II.] And Secondly, _That God doth not impute this Evil to
Infants, until they actually join with it_: That so, by Establishing
the Truth, we may overturn the Errors on both Parts.

[Sidenote: III.] And, as for that Third Thing included in the
Proposition itself concerning these _Teachers_ which _want the Grace of
God_, we shall refer that to the tenth Proposition, where the Matter is
more particularly handled.

§. II. [Sidenote: Part I. _Adam’s Fall._] As to the first, not to dive
into the many curious Notions which many have concerning the _Condition
of_ Adam _before the Fall_, all agree in this, That thereby he came to
a very great Loss, not only in the Things which related to the outward
Man, but in Regard to that true Fellowship and Communion he had with
God. This Loss was signified unto him in the Command, _For in the Day
thou eatest thereof, thou shalt surely die_, Gen. ii. 17. This Death
could not be an outward Death, or the Dissolution of the outward Man;
for as to that, he did not die yet many Hundred Years after; so that
it must needs respect his spiritual Life and Communion with God. The
Consequence of this Fall, besides that which relates to the Fruits of
the Earth, is also expressed, _Gen._ iii. 24. _So he drove out the
Man, and he placed at the East of the Garden of Eden Cherubims, and
a flaming Sword, which turned every Way, to keep the Way of the Tree
of Life._ Now whatsoever literal Signification this may have, we may
safely ascribe to this Paradise a mystical Signification, and truly
account it that spiritual Communion and Fellowship, which the Saints
obtain with God by Jesus Christ; to whom only these Cherubims give
Way, and unto as many as enter by him, who calls himself the _Door_.
[Sidenote: _Guilt not ascribed to _Adam_’s Posterity._] So that, though
we do not ascribe any Whit of _Adam_’s Guilt to Men, until they make
it theirs by the like Acts of Disobedience; yet we cannot suppose that
Men, who are come of _Adam_ naturally, can have any good Thing in their
Nature, as belonging to it; which he, from whom they derive their
Nature, had not himself to communicate unto them.

If then we may affirm, that _Adam_ did not retain in his Nature (as
belonging thereunto) any Will or Light capable to give him Knowledge
in spiritual Things, then neither can his Posterity: For whatsoever
real Good any Man doth, it proceedeth not from his Nature, as he
is Man, or the Son of _Adam_; but from the _Seed of God in him_, as
a new Visitation of Life, in order to bring him out of this natural
Condition: So that, though it be _in him_, yet it is not _of him_;
and this the Lord himself witnessed, _Gen._ vi. 5. where it is said,
he _saw that every Imagination of the Thoughts of his Heart was only
evil continually_: Which Words as they are very positive, so are they
very comprehensive. [Sidenote: _Every Imagination of the natural
Man is evil._] Observe the Emphasis of them; _First, _There_ is
every Imagination of the Thoughts of his Heart_; so that this admits
of no Exception of any Imagination of the Thoughts of his Heart.
_Secondly, Is only evil continually_; it is neither in _some Part evil
continually_, nor yet _only_ evil _at some Times_; but both _only_
evil, and _always_ and _continually_ evil; which certainly excludes any
Good, as a proper Effect of Man’s Heart, naturally: For that which is
only evil, and that always, cannot of its own Nature produce any good
Thing. The Lord expressed this again a little after, Chap. viii. 21.
_The Imagination of Man’s Heart is evil from his Youth._ Thus inferring
how natural and proper it is unto him; from which I thus argue:

If the Thoughts of Man’s Heart be not only evil, but always evil; then
are they, as they simply proceed from his Heart, neither good in Part,
nor at any Time:

But the First is true: Therefore the Last.


If Man’s Thoughts be always and only evil, then are they altogether
useless and ineffectual to him in the Things of God:

But the First is true: Therefore the Last.

[Sidenote: _The Heart of Man deceitful._] _Secondly_, This appears
clearly from that Saying of the Prophet _Jeremiah_, Chap. xvii. 9. _The
Heart is deceitful above all Things, and desperately wicked._ For who
can with any Colour of Reason imagine, that that which is so hath any
Power of itself, or is in any wise fit, to lead a Man to Righteousness,
whereunto it is of its own Nature directly opposite? This is as
contrary to Reason, as it is impossible in Nature, that a Stone of its
own Nature and proper Motion, should fly upwards: For as a Stone of
its own Nature inclineth and is prone to move downwards towards the
Center, so the Heart of Man is naturally prone and inclined to Evil,
some to one, and some to another. From this then I also thus argue:

That which is _deceitful above all Things, and desperately wicked_, is
not fit, neither can it lead a Man aright in Things that are good and

But the Heart of Man is such:

Therefore, _&c._

[51]But the Apostle _Paul_ describeth the Condition of Men in the Fall
at large, taking it out of the _Psalmist_. _There is none righteous, no
not one; There is none that understandeth, there is none that seeketh
after God. They are all gone out of the Way, they are altogether become
unprofitable; there is none that doth good, no not one._ [Sidenote:
_Man’s Estate in the Fall._]_Their Throat is an open Sepulchre, with
their Tongues they have used Deceit, the Poison of Asps is under their
Lips: Whose Mouths are full of Cursing and Bitterness. Their Feet are
swift to shed Blood; Destruction and Misery are in their Ways: And the
Way of Peace have they not known. There is no Fear of God before their
Eyes._ What more positive can be spoken? He seemeth to be particularly
careful to avoid that any Good should be ascribed to the natural Man;
he shews how he is polluted in all his Ways; he shews how he is void of
Righteousness, of Understanding, of the Knowledge of God; how he is out
of the Way, and in short unprofitable; than which nothing can be more
fully said to confirm our Judgment: For if this be the Condition of the
natural Man, or of the Man as he stands in the Fall, he is unfit to
make one right Step to Heaven.

[51] Rom. 3. 10. Psal. 14. 3. _&_ 53. 2, _&c._

[Sidenote: Object.] If it be said, _That is not spoken of the Condition
of Man in general; but only of some Particulars, or at the least that
it comprehends not all_;

[Sidenote: _Answ._] The Text sheweth the clear Contrary in the
foregoing Verses, where the Apostle takes in himself, as he stood in
his natural Condition. _What then? Are we better than they? No, in no
wise; for we have before proved both _Jews_ and _Gentiles_, that they
are all under Sin, as it is written_: And so he goes on; by which it is
manifest that he speaks of Mankind in general.

[Sidenote: Object.] If they object that which the same Apostle saith
in the foregoing Chapter, Ver. 14. to wit, That _the _Gentiles_ do
by Nature the Things contained in the Law, and so consequently do by
Nature that which is good and acceptable in the Sight of God_;

[Sidenote: _Answ. 1._] I answer; This Nature must not, neither can be
understood of _Man’s own Nature_, which is corrupt and fallen; but
of the _Spiritual Nature_, which proceedeth from the _Seed of God in
Man_, as it receiveth a new Visitation of God’s Love, and is quickened
by it: Which clearly appears by the following Words, where he saith,
[Sidenote: _By what Nature the _Gentiles_ did do the Things of the
Law._] _These not having a Law, _(i. e. outwardly)_ are a Law unto
themselves; which shews the Work of the Law written in their Hearts_.
These Acts of theirs then are an Effect of the Law written in their
Hearts; but the Scripture declareth, that the Writing of the Law in
the Heart is a Part, yea, and a great Part too, of the New Covenant
Dispensation, and so no Consequence nor Part of Man’s Nature.

[Sidenote: _Answ. 2._] _Secondly_, If this Nature here spoken of could
be understood of Man’s own Nature, which he hath as he is a Man, then
would the Apostle unavoidably contradict himself; since he elsewhere
positively declares, [Sidenote: _The natural Man discerneth not_, &c.]
_That the natural Man discerneth not the Things of God, nor can_. Now
I hope the Law of God is among the Things of God, especially as it
is written in the Heart. The Apostle, in the viith Chap. of the same
Epistle, saith, Ver. 12. that _the Law is, Holy, Just, and Good_;
and Ver. 14. the _Law is Spiritual, but he is Carnal_. Now in what
Respect is he Carnal, but as he stands in the Fall unregenerate? Now
what Inconsistency would here be, to say, That he is Carnal, and
yet not so of his own Nature, seeing it is from his Nature that he
is so denominated? We see the Apostle contra-distinguisheth the Law
as Spiritual, from Man’s Nature as Carnal and Sinful. Wherefore, as
Christ saith, [52]_There can no Grapes be expected from Thorns, nor
Figs of Thistles_; so neither can the fulfilling of the Law, which
is Spiritual, Holy, and Just, be expected from that Nature which is
Corrupt, Fallen, and Unregenerate. Whence we conclude, with good
Reason, that the Nature here spoken of, by which the _Gentiles_ are
said to have done the _Things contained in the Law_, is not the
_common Nature of Men_; [Sidenote: _The _Gentiles_ Spiritual Nature
in doing the Law._] but that _Spiritual Nature_ that ariseth from
the Works of the righteous and Spiritual Law that is written in the
Heart. I confess they of the other Extreme, when they are pressed with
this Testimony by the _Socinians_ and _Pelagians_, as well as by us
when we use this Scripture, to shew them how some of the _Heathens_,
by the _Light of Christ in their Heart, came to be saved, are very
far to seek; giving this Answer_, That _there were some Reliques of
the heavenly Image left in _Adam_, by which the _Heathens_ could do
some good Things_. Which, as it is in itself without Proof, so it
contradicts their own Assertions elsewhere, and gives away their Cause.
For if these Reliques were of Force to enable them to fulfil the
righteous Law of God, it takes away the Necessity of Christ’s coming;
or at least leaves them a Way to be saved without him; unless they will
say (which is worst of all) _That though they really fulfilled the
righteous Law of God, yet God damned them, because of the Want of that
particular Knowledge, while he himself with-held all Means of their
coming to him from them_; but of this hereafter.

[52] Mat. 7. 16.

§. III. I might also here use another Argument from these Words of the
Apostle, 1 _Cor._ ii. where he so positively excludes the natural Man
from an Understanding in the Things of God; but because I have spoken
of _that Scripture_ in the Beginning of the second Proposition, I will
here avoid to repeat what is there mentioned, referring thereunto:
[Sidenote: Socinians _exalting the Light of the natural Man._] Yet
because the _Socinians_ and others, who exalt the Light of the natural
Man, or a natural Light in Man, do object against this Scripture, I
shall remove it before I proceed.[53]

[53] Antequam progrediar.

[Sidenote: Object.] They say, _The _Greek_ Word _[Greek: psychikos:
ψυχικος]_ ought to be translated _animal_, and not _natural_; else,
_say they_, it would have been_ [Greek: physikos: φυσικος]. From which
they seek to infer, _that it is only the Animal Man, and not the
Rational, that is excluded here from discerning the Things of God_.
Which _Shift_, without disputing about the Word, is easily refuted;
neither is it any wise consistent with the Scope of the Place. For

[Sidenote: _Answ. 1._] [Sidenote: _The Animal Life is the same with
Natural._] _First_, The _Animal Life_ is no other than that which Man
hath in common with other living Creatures; for as he is a mere Man,
he differs no otherwise from Beasts than by the _Rational Property_.
Now the Apostle deduceth his Argument in the foregoing Verses from
this _Simile_; That _as the Things of a Man cannot be known but by the
Spirit of a Man, so the Things of God no Man knoweth but by the Spirit
of God_. But I hope these Men will confess unto me, that the Things of
a Man are not known by the _Animal Spirit_ only, _i. e._ by that which
he hath in common with the Beasts, but by the _Rational_; so that it
must be the _Rational_ that is here understood. Again, the Assumption
shews clearly that the Apostle had no such Intent as these Men’s Gloss
would make him have, viz. _So the Things of God knoweth no Man, but the
Spirit of God_. According to their Judgment he should have said, _The
Things of God knoweth no Man by his Animal Spirit, but by his Rational
Spirit_: For to say, _The Spirit of God_, here spoken of, is no other
than the _Rational Spirit of Man_, would border upon Blasphemy, since
they are so often contra-distinguished. Again, going on, he saith not
that they are _Rationally_, but _Spiritually discerned_.

[Sidenote: _Answ. 2._] _Secondly_, The Apostle throughout this Chapter
shews how the Wisdom of Man is unfit to judge of the Things of God, and
ignorant of them. Now I ask these Men, whether a Man be called a _Wise
Man_ from his _Animal Property_, or from his _Rational_? [Sidenote:
_The Rational Man in the Natural State excluded from discerning the
Things of God._] If from his _Rational_, then it is not only the
_Animal_, but also the _Rational_, as he is yet in the Natural State,
which the Apostle excludes here, and whom he contra-distinguisheth from
the Spiritual, Ver. 15. _But the Spiritual Man judgeth all Things._
This cannot be said of any Man merely because _Rational_, or as he
is a Man, seeing the Men of the greatest Reason, if we may so esteem
Men, whom the Scripture calls _Wise_, as were the _Greeks_ of Old,
not only may be, but often are Enemies to the Kingdom of God; while
both the _Preaching of Christ_ is said to be _Foolishness with the
Wise Men of the World_, and the _Wisdom of the World_ is said to be
_Foolishness with God_. Now whether it be any ways probable that either
these Wise Men that are said to account the _Gospel Foolishness_, are
only so called with respect to their _Animal Property_, and not their
_Rational_; or that the _Wisdom_ that is Foolishness with God is not
meant of the _Rational_, but only the _Animal Property_, any Rational
Man, laying aside Interest, may easily judge.

§. IV. [Sidenote: Infants, _no Sin imputed to them_.] I come now to the
other Part, to wit, That _this evil and corrupt Seed is not imputed to
Infants, until they actually join with it_. For this there is a Reason
given in the End of the Proposition itself, drawn from _Ephes._ ii.
For these are _by Nature Children of Wrath, who walk according to the
Prince of the Power of the Air, the Spirit that now worketh in the
Children of Disobedience_. Here the Apostle gives their evil walking,
and not any Thing that is not reduced to act, as a Reason of their
being _Children of Wrath_. And this is suitable to the whole Strain of
the Gospel, where no Man is ever threatened or judged for what Iniquity
he hath not actually wrought: Such indeed as continue in Iniquity, and
so do allow the Sins of their Fathers, God will visit the Iniquity of
the Fathers upon the Children.

Is it not strange then that Men should entertain an Opinion so
absurd in itself, and so cruel and contrary to the Nature as well of
God’s Mercy as Justice, concerning which the Scripture is altogether
silent? But it is manifest that Man hath invented this Opinion out of
Self-love, and from that bitter Root from which all Errors spring;
[Sidenote: _The absolute Decree of Election springs from Self-love._]
for the most Part of _Protestants_ that hold this, having, as they
fancy, the _Absolute Decree of Election_ to secure them and their
Children, so as they cannot miss of Salvation, they make no Difficulty
to send all others, both Old and Young, to Hell. For whereas Self-love,
which is always apt to believe that which it desires, possesseth them
with an Hope that their Part is secure, they are not solicitous how
they leave their Neighbours, which are the far greater Part of Mankind,
in these inextricable Difficulties. The _Papists_ again use this
Opinion as an Art to augment the Esteem of their Church, and Reverence
of its Sacraments, seeing they pretend it is washed away by Baptism;
only in this they appear to be a little more merciful, in that they
send not these unbaptized Infants to Hell, but to a certain _Limbus_,
concerning which the Scriptures are as silent as of the other. This
then is not only not authorized in the Scriptures, but contrary to the
express Tenor of them. The Apostle saith plainly, _Rom._ iv. 15. _Where
no Law is, there is no Transgression._ And again, v. 13. _But Sin is
not imputed, where there is no Law._ [Sidenote: _To Infants there is
no Law so no Transgression._] Than which Testimonies there is nothing
more positive; since to Infants there is no Law, seeing as such they
are utterly uncapable of it; the Law cannot reach any but such as have
in some Measure less or more the Exercise of their Understanding, which
Infants have not. So that from thence I thus argue:

Sin is imputed to none, where there is no Law.

But to Infants there is no Law:

Therefore Sin is not imputed to them.

The _Proposition_ is the Apostle’s own Words; the _Assumption_ is thus

Those who are under a Physical Impossibility of either hearing,
knowing, or understanding any Law, where the Impossibility is not
brought upon them by any Act of their own, but is according to the very
Order of Nature appointed by God; to such there is no Law.

But Infants are under this Physical Impossibility:

Therefore, _&c._

_Secondly_, What can be more positive than that of _Ezek._ xviii.
20. _The Soul that sinneth, it shall die: The Son shall not bear the
Father’s Iniquity?_ For the Prophet here first sheweth what is the
Cause of Man’s Eternal Death, which he saith is his _Sinning_; and
then, as if he purposed expresly to shut out such an Opinion, he
assures us, _The Son shall not bear the Father’s Iniquity_. From which
I thus argue:

[Sidenote: _Infants bear not _Adam_’s Transgression._] If the Son bear
not the Iniquity of his Father, or of his immediate Parents, far less
shall he bear the Iniquity of _Adam_.

But the Son shall not bear the Iniquity of his Father:

_Therefore_, &c.

§. V. Having thus far shewn how absurd this Opinion is, I shall briefly
examine the Reasons its Authors bring for it.

[Sidenote: Obj. 1.] _First, _They say, Adam_ was a publick Person, and
therefore all Men sinned in him, as being in his Loins_. And for this
they allege that of _Rom._ v. 12. _Wherefore as by one Man Sin entered
into the World, and Death by Sin; and so Death passed upon all Men,
for that all have sinned, _&c._ These last Words, _say they,_ may be
translated, In whom all have sinned._

[Sidenote: _Answ._] To this I answer: That _Adam_ is a publick Person
is not denied; and that through him there is a Seed of Sin propagated
to all Men, which in its own Nature is sinful, and inclines Men to
Iniquity; yet it will not follow from thence, that Infants, who join
not with this Seed, are guilty. As for these Words in the _Romans_, the
Reason of the Guilt there alleged is, _For that all have sinned_. Now
no Man is said to sin, unless he actually sin in his own Person; for
the _Greek_ Words [Greek: eph' ô: εφ ω] may very well relate to [Greek:
thanatos: θανατος], which is the nearest Antecedent; so that they
hold forth, how that _Adam_, by his Sin, gave an Entrance to Sin in
the World; _And so Death entered by Sin_, [Greek: eph' ô: εφ ω] i. e.
_upon which_ [viz. Occasion] or, _in which_ [viz. Death] _all_ others
_have sinned_; that is, actually in their own Persons; to wit, all that
were capable of sinning: Of which Number that Infants could not be,
the Apostle clearly shews by the following Verse, _Sin is not imputed,
where there is no Law_: And since, as is above proved, there is no Law
to Infants, they cannot be here included.

[Sidenote: Obj. 2.] Their Second Objection is from _Psalm_ li. 5.
_Behold I was shapen in Iniquity, and in Sin did my Mother conceive me.
Hence, _they say,_ it appears that Infants from their Conception are

[Sidenote: _Answ._]How they infer this Consequence, for my Part I see
not. The Iniquity and Sin here appears to be far more ascribable to the
Parents than to the Child. [Sidenote: _Conceived in Sin_ answered.]
It is said indeed, _In Sin did my Mother conceive me_; not _my Mother
did conceive me a Sinner_. Besides that, so interpreted, contradicts
expresly the Scripture before-mentioned in making Children guilty of
the Sins of their immediate Parents, (for of _Adam_ there is not here
any Mention) contrary to the plain Words, _The Son shall not bear the
Father’s Iniquity_.

[Sidenote: Obj. 3.] Thirdly, They object, _That the Wages of Sin is
Death; and that seeing Children are subject to Diseases and Death,
therefore they must be guilty of Sin._

[Sidenote: _Answ._] I answer; That these Things are a Consequence
of the Fall, and of Adam’s Sin, is confessed; but that that infers
necessarily a Guilt in all others that are subject to them is denied.
[Sidenote: _Death the Wages of Sin_ answered.] For though the Whole
outward _Creation_ suffered a Decay by _Adam_’s Fall, which groans
under Vanity; according to which it is said in _Job_, That _the Heavens
are not clean in the Sight of God_; yet will it not from thence follow,
that the Herbs, Earth, and Trees are Sinners.

Next, Death, though a Consequent of the Fall, incident to Man’s earthly
Nature, is not the Wages of Sin in the Saints, but rather a Sleep,
by which they pass from Death to Life; which is so far from being
troublesome and painful to them, as all real Punishments for Sin are,
that the Apostle counts it Gain: _To me, _saith he,_ to die is Gain_,
_Philip._ i. 21.

[Sidenote: Obj. 4.] Some are so foolish as to make an Objection
farther, saying, _That if _Adam_’s Sin be not imputed to those who
actually have not sinned, then it would follow that all Infants are

[Sidenote: _Answ._] But we are willing that this supposed Absurdity
should be the Consequence of our Doctrine, rather than that which it
seems our Adversaries reckon not absurd, though the undoubted and
unavoidable Consequence of theirs, _viz._ That _many Infants eternally
perish, not for any Sin of their own, but only for _Adam_’s Iniquity;_
where we are willing to let the Controversy stop, commending both to
the illuminated Understanding of the _Christian Reader_.

This Error of our Adversaries is both denied and refuted by
_Zuinglius,_ that eminent Founder of the _Protestant Churches of
Switzerland_, in his Book _De Baptismo_, for which he is anathematized
by the Council of _Trent_, in the _Fifth Session_. We shall only
add this Information: That we confess then that a Seed of Sin is
transmitted to all Men from _Adam_, although imputed to none, until by
sinning they actually join with it; in which Seed he gave Occasion to
all to sin, and it is the Origin of all evil Actions and Thoughts in
Men’s Hearts, [Greek: eph' ô: εφ ω] to wit, [Greek: thanatô: θανατω],
as it is in _Rom._ v. i. e. _In which Death all have sinned._ For
this Seed of Sin is frequently called _Death_ in the Scripture, and
_the Body of Death_; seeing indeed it is a _Death_ to the Life of
Righteousness and Holiness: Therefore its Seed and its Product is
called the _Old Man_, the _Old Adam_, in which all Sin is; for which
cause we use this Name to express this Sin, and not that of _Original
Sin_; [Sidenote: _Original Sin no Scripture Phrase._] of which
Phrase the Scripture makes no Mention, and under which invented and
unscriptural Barbarism this Notion of _Imputed Sin to Infants_ took
Place among Christians.


Concerning the UNIVERSAL REDEMPTION by CHRIST, and also the SAVING and
    SPIRITUAL LIGHT, wherewith every Man is enlightened.


[54]God, _out of his Infinite Love_, who delighteth not in the Death
    of a Sinner, but that all should live and be saved, hath so
    loved the World, that he hath given his only Son a LIGHT, that
    whosoever believeth in him shall be saved, _John_ iii. 16. Who
    enlighteneth EVERY Man that cometh into the World, _John_ i. 9.
    And maketh manifest all Things that are reproveable, _Ephes._ v.
    13. _And teacheth all Temperance, Righteousness, and Godliness;
    and this _Light_ enlighteneth the Hearts of all, for a Time, in
    order to Salvation; and this is it which reproves the Sin of all
    Individuals, and would work out the Salvation of all, if not
    resisted. Nor is it less _Universal_ than the Seed of Sin, being
    the Purchase of his Death,_ who tasted Death for every Man. For as
    in _Adam_ all die, even so in _Christ_ all shall be made alive, 1
    _Cor._ xv. 22.

[54] Ezek. 18. 32. & 33. 11.


_According to which Principle, or _Hypothesis_, all the Objections
    against the _Universality_ of _Christ’s Death_ are easily solved;
    neither is it needful to recur to the Ministry of Angels, and
    those other Miraculous Means which they say God useth to manifest
    the Doctrine and History of _Christ’s Passion_ unto such, who,
    living in Parts of the World where the outward Preaching of the
    Gospel is unknown, have well improved the first and common Grace.
    For as hence it well follows, that some of the Old _Philosophers_
    might have been saved, so also may some, who by Providence are
    cast into those remote Parts of the World where the Knowledge of
    the History is wanting, be made Partakers of the Divine Mystery,
    if they receive, and resist not that Grace, _[55]A Manifestation
    whereof is given to every Man to profit withal._ This most certain
    Doctrine being then received, that there is an _Evangelical_ and
    _Saving Light and Grace in all_, the Universality of the Love and
    Mercy of God towards Mankind, both in the Death of his Beloved Son,
    the _Lord Jesus Christ_, and in the Manifestation of the _Light_ in
    the Heart, is established and confirmed, against all the Objections
    of such as deny it. Therefore _[56]Christ hath tasted Death for
    every Man;_ not only for _all Kinds of Men,_ as some vainly talk,
    but for every Man of all _Kinds_: The Benefit of whose Offering is
    not only extended to such who have the distinct outward Knowledge
    of his _Death_ and _Sufferings_, as the same is declared in the
    Scriptures, but even unto those who are necessarily excluded
    from the Benefit of this Knowledge by some inevitable Accident;
    which Knowledge we willingly confess to be very Profitable and
    Comfortable, but not absolutely Needful unto such from whom God
    himself hath with-held it; yet they may be made Partakers of the
    Mystery of his Death, though ignorant of the History, if they
    suffer his _Seed_ and _Light, enlightening their Hearts,_ to take
    Place; _in which Light Communion with the Father and the Son is
    enjoyed;_ so as of wicked Men to become holy, and Lovers of that
    Power, by whose inward and secret Touches they feel themselves
    turned from the Evil to the Good, and learn _to do to others as
    they would be done by,_ in which Christ himself affirms all to
    be included. As _They_ have then falsely and erroneously Taught,
    who have denied Christ to have died for all Men; so neither have
    _They_ sufficiently taught the Truth, who affirming him to have
    died for all, have added the absolute Necessity of the outward
    Knowledge thereof, in order to obtain its saving Effect. Among
    whom the _Remonstrants_ of _Holland_ have been chiefly wanting,
    and many other Assertors of _Universal Redemption,_ in that they
    have not placed the Extent of this Salvation in that _Divine_
    and _Evangelical Principle of Light and Life_ wherewith _Christ
    hath enlightened every Man that cometh into the World;_ which is
    excellently and evidently held forth in these Scriptures_, Gen. vi.
    3. Deut. xxx. 14. John i. 7, 8, 9, 16. Rom. x. 8. Titus ii. 11.

[55] 1 Cor. 12. 7.

[56] Heb. 2. 9.

[Sidenote: Absolute Reprobation, _that horrible and blasphemous
Doctrine, described_.] Hitherto we have considered Man’s fallen, lost,
corrupted, and degenerated Condition. Now it is fit to enquire, _How
and by what Means he may come to be freed out of this miserable and
depraved Condition_, which in these two Propositions is declared and
demonstrated; which I thought meet to place together because of their
Affinity, the one being as it were an Explanation of the other.

As for that Doctrine which these Propositions chiefly strike at, to
wit, _absolute Reprobation_, according to which some are not afraid
to assert, “That God, by an Eternal and Immutable Decree, hath
Predestinated to _Eternal Damnation_ the far greater Part of Mankind,
not considered as made, much less as fallen, without any Respect to
their Disobedience or Sin, but only for the demonstrating of the Glory
of his Justice; and that for the bringing this about, he hath appointed
these miserable Souls necessarily to walk in their wicked Ways, that so
his Justice may lay hold on them: And that God doth therefore not only
suffer them to be liable to this Misery in many Parts of the World, by
with-holding from them the Preaching of the Gospel and the Knowledge
of Christ, but even in those Places where the Gospel is preached, and
Salvation by Christ is offered; whom though he publickly invite them,
yet he justly condemns for Disobedience, albeit he hath with-held from
them all Grace by which they could have laid hold of the Gospel, _viz._
Because he hath, by a secret Will unknown to all Men, ordained and
decreed (without any Respect had to their Obedience or Sin) that they
shall not obey, and that the Offer of the Gospel shall never prove
effectual for their Salvation, but only serve to aggravate and occasion
their greater Condemnation.”

I say, as to this horrible and blasphemous Doctrine, our Cause is
common with many others, who have both wisely and learnedly, according
to Scripture, Reason, and Antiquity, refuted it. Seeing then that so
much is said already and so well against this Doctrine, that little can
be superadded, except what hath been said already, I shall be short in
this Respect; yet, because it lies so in Opposition to my Way, I cannot
let it altogether pass.

§. I. [Sidenote: _This Doctrine a Novelty._] First, We may safely
call this Doctrine a Novelty, seeing in the first four hundred Years
after Christ there is no Mention made of it: For as it is contrary
to the Scriptures Testimony, and to the Tenor of the Gospel, so all
the ancient Writers, Teachers, and Doctors of the Church pass it over
with a profound Silence. [Sidenote: _The Rise of it._] The first
Foundations of it were laid in the later Writings of _Augustine_, who,
in his Heat against _Pelagius_, let fall some Expressions which some
have unhappily gleaned up, to the establishing of this Error; thereby
contradicting the Truth, and sufficiently gainsaying many others, and
many more and frequent Expressions of the same _Augustine_. Afterwards
was this Doctrine fomented by _Dominicus_ a Friar, and the Monks of
his Order; and at last unhappily taken up by _John Calvin_ (otherwise
a Man in divers Respects to be commended) to the great staining of
his Reputation, and Defamation both of the _Protestant_ and Christian
Religion; which though it received the Decrees of the Synod of _Dort_
for its Confirmation, hath since lost Ground, and begins to be exploded
by most Men of Learning and Piety in all _Protestant_ Churches.
However, we should not oppugn it for the Silence of the Ancients,
Paucity of its Assertors, or for the Learnedness of its Opposers, if we
did observe it to have any real Bottom in the Writings or Sayings of
Christ and the Apostles, and that it were not _highly injurious to God
himself, to Jesus Christ our Mediator and Redeemer, and to the Power,
Virtue, Nobility, and Excellency if his blessed Gospel, and lastly
unto all Mankind_.

§. II. [Sidenote: _Highly injurious to God, in making him the Author
of Sin._] First, _It is highly injurious to God_, because it makes him
the Author of Sin, which of all Things is most contrary to his Nature.
I confess the Assertors of this Principle deny this Consequence; but
that is but a mere Illusion, seeing it so naturally follows from this
Doctrine, and is equally ridiculous, as if a Man should pertinaciously
deny that _one_ and _two_ make _three_. For if God has decreed that
the reprobated Ones shall perish, without all Respect to their evil
Deeds, but only of his own Pleasure, and if he hath also decreed long
before they were in Being, or in a Capacity to do Good or Evil, that
they should walk in those wicked Ways, by which, as by a secondary
Means, they are led to that End, who, I pray, is the first Author and
Cause thereof but God, who so willed and decreed? This is as natural a
Consequence as can be: And therefore, although many of the Preachers
of this Doctrine have sought out various, strange, strained and
intricate Distinctions to defend their Opinion, and avoid this horrid
Consequence; yet some, and that of the most eminent of them, have been
so plain in the Matter, as they have put it beyond all Doubt; of which
I shall instance a few among many Passages. [57]_I say, That by the
Ordination and Will of God _Adam_ fell. God would have Man to fall.
Man is blinded by the Will and Commandment of God. We refer the Causes
of hardening us to God. The highest or remote Cause of hardening is
the Will of God. It followeth that the hidden Counsel of God is the
Cause of hardening._ These are _Calvin_’s Expressions. [58]_God_ (saith
_Beza_) _hath predestinated not only unto Damnation, but also unto the
Causes of it, whomsoever he saw meet_. [59]_The Decree of God cannot
be excluded from the Causes of Corruption._ [60]_It is certain_ (saith
_Zanchius_) _that God is the first Cause of Obduration_. _Reprobates
are held so fast under God’s Almighty Decree, that they cannot but sin
and perish._ [61]_It is the Opinion_ (saith _Paræus_) _of our Doctors,
That God did inevitably decree the Temptation and Fall of Man_. _The
Creature sinneth indeed necessarily, by the most just Judgment of God.
Our Men do most rightly affirm, That the Fall of Man was necessary and
inevitable, by Accident, because of God’s Decree._ [62]_God_ (saith
_Martyr_) _doth incline and force the Wills of wicked Men into great
Sins_. [63]_God_ (saith _Zuinglius_) _moveth the Robber to kill_. _He
killeth, God forcing him thereunto. But thou wilt say, He is forced to
sin; I permit truly that he is forced._ [64]_Reprobate Persons_ (saith
_Piscator_) _are absolutely ordained to this twofold End; to undergo
everlasting Punishment, and necessarily to sin, and therefore to sin,
that they may be justly punished_.

[57] _Calvin_ in cap. 3. _Gen. Id._ 1. Inst. _c. 18, S. 1. Id._ lib. de
Præd. _Idem_ lib. de Provid. _Id._ Inst. c. 23. S. 1.

[58] _Beza_ lib. de Præd.

[59] _Id._ de Præd. ad Art. 1.

[60] _Zanch._ de Excæcat. q. 5. _Id._ lib. 5. de Nat. Dei cap. 2. de

[61] _Paræus_ lib. 3. de Amis. gratiæ c. 2. _ibid._ c. 1.

[62] _Martyr_ in Rom.

[63] _Zuing._ lib. de Prov. c. 5.

[64] _Resp._ ad _Vorst._ part. 1. p. 120.

If these Sayings do not plainly and evidently import, that _God is the
Author of Sin_, we must not then seek these Men’s Opinions from their
Words, but some Way else. It seems as if they had assumed to themselves
that monstrous and twofold Will they feigned of God; one by which
they declare their Minds openly, and another more secret and hidden,
which is quite contrary to the other. Nor doth it at all help them to
say, That Man sins willingly, since that Willingness, Proclivity, and
Propensity to Evil is, according to their Judgment, so necessarily
imposed upon him, that he cannot but be willing, because God hath
willed and decreed him to be so. Which shift is just as if I should
take a Child uncapable to resist me, and throw it down from a great
Precipice; the Weight of the Child’s Body indeed makes it go readily
down, and the Violence of the Fall upon some Rock or Stone beats out
its Brains and kills it. Now then, I pray, though the Body of the Child
goes willingly down (for I suppose it as to its Mind uncapable of any
Will) and the Weight of its Body, and not any immediate Stroke of my
Hand, who perhaps am at a great Distance, makes it die, whether is the
Child or I the proper Cause of its Death? Let any Man of Reason judge,
if God’s Part be, with them, as great, yea, more immediate, in the Sins
of Men, as by the Testimonies above brought doth appear, whether doth
not this make him not only the Author of Sin, but more unjust than the
unjustest of Men?

§. III. [Sidenote: _2. It makes God delight in the Death of a Sinner._]
Secondly, _This Doctrine is injurious to God_, because it makes him
delight in the Death of Sinners; yea, and to will many to die in their
Sins, contrary to these Scriptures, _Ezek._ xxxiii. 11. 1 _Tim._ ii.
3. 2 _Pet._ iii. 9. For if he hath created Men only for this very End,
that he might shew forth his Justice and Power in them, as these Men
affirm, and for effecting thereof hath not only with-held from them the
Means of doing Good, but also predestinated the Evil, that they might
fall into it; and that he inclines and forces them into great Sins;
certainly he must necessarily delight in their Death, and will them to
Die; seeing against his own Will he neither doth, nor can do any Thing.

§. IV. [Sidenote: _3. It renders Christ’s Mediation Ineffectual._]
Thirdly, _It is highly injurious to Christ our Mediator, and to the
Efficacy and Excellency of his Gospel_; for it renders his Mediation
ineffectual, as if he had not by his Sufferings throughly broken down
the _middle Wall_, nor yet removed the _Wrath_ of God, or purchased
the Love of God towards all Mankind, if it was afore-decreed that it
should be of no Service to the far greater Part of Mankind. It is to no
Purpose to allege, that the Death of Christ was of Efficacy enough to
have saved all Mankind, if in effect its Virtue be not so far extended
as to put all Mankind into a Capacity of Salvation.

[Sidenote: _4. It makes the Gospel a Mock._] Fourthly, _It makes
the Preaching of the Gospel a mere Mock and Illusion_, if many of
these, to whom it is preached, be by any irrevocable Decree excluded
from being benefited by it; it wholly makes useless the Preaching
of Faith and Repentance, and the whole Tenor of the Gospel-promises
and Threatenings, as being all relative to a former Decree and Means
before appointed to such; which, because they cannot fail, Man needs
do nothing but wait for that irresistible Juncture, which will come,
though it be but at the last Hour of his Life, if he be in the Decree
of _Election_; and be his Diligence and Waiting what it can, he shall
never attain it, if he belong to the Decree of _Reprobation_.

[Sidenote: _5. It makes the Coming of Christ an Act of Wrath._]
Fifthly, _It makes the Coming of Christ, and his Propitiatory
Sacrifice_, which the Scripture affirms to have been the Fruit of God’s
Love to the World, and transacted for the Sins and Salvation of all
Men, _to have been rather a Testimony of God’s Wrath to the World, and
one of the greatest Judgments, and severest Acts of God’s Indignation
towards Mankind_, it being only ordained to save a very few, and for
the hardening, and augmenting the Condemnation of the far greater
Number of Men, because they believe not truly in it; the Cause of which
Unbelief again, as the Divines [so called] above assert, is the hidden
Counsel of God: Certainly the Coming of Christ was never to them a
Testimony of God’s Love, but rather of his implacable Wrath: And if the
World may be taken for the far greater Number of such as live in it,
God never loved the World, according to this Doctrine, but rather hated
it greatly, in sending his Son to be crucified in it.

§. V. [Sidenote: 6. _It renders Mankind in a worse Condition than the
Devils--_] Sixthly, _This Doctrine is highly injurious to Mankind_;
for it renders them in a far worse Condition than the Devils in Hell.
For these were sometime in a Capacity to have stood, and do suffer
only for their own Guilt; whereas many Millions of Men are for ever
tormented, according to them, for _Adam_’s Sin, which they neither knew
of, nor ever were accessary to; it renders them worse than the Beasts
of the Field, of whom the Master requires no more than they are able
to perform; and if they be killed, Death to them is the End of Sorrow;
whereas Man is for ever tormented for not doing that which he never was
able to do. [Sidenote:--_Than the_ Israelites _under_ Pharaoh.] It puts
him into a far worse Condition than _Pharaoh_ put the _Israelites_;
for though he with-held Straw from them, yet by much Labour and Pains
they could have gotten it: But from Men they make God to with-hold all
Means of Salvation, so that they can by no Means attain it; [Sidenote:
Tantalus’_s Condition_.] yea, they place Mankind in that Condition
which the Poets feign of _Tantalus_, who, oppressed with Thirst, stands
in Water up to the Chin, yet can by no Means reach it with his Tongue;
and being tormented with Hunger, hath Fruits hanging at his very Lips,
yet so as he can never lay hold on them with his Teeth; and these
Things are so near him, not to nourish him, but to torment him. So do
these Men: They make the outward Creation of the Works of Providence,
the Smiting of Conscience, sufficient to convince the _Heathens_ of
Sin, and so to condemn and judge them: But not at all to help them
to Salvation. They make the Preaching of the Gospel, the Offer of
Salvation by Christ, the Use of the Sacraments, of Prayer, and good
Works, sufficient to condemn those they account _Reprobates_ within
the Church, serving only to inform them, to beget a seeming Faith and
vain Hope; yet because of a secret Impotency, which they had from their
Infancy, all these are wholly ineffectual to bring them the least Step
towards Salvation; and do only contribute to render their Condemnation
the greater, and their Torments the more violent and intolerable.

Having thus briefly removed this false Doctrine which stood in my Way,
because they that are desirous may see it both learnedly and piously
refuted by many others, I come to the Matter of our Proposition, which
is, That _God out of his infinite Love, who delighteth not in the Death
of a Sinner, but that all should live and be saved, hath sent his only
begotten Son into the World, that whosoever believeth in him might be
saved_; which also is again affirmed in the sixth Proposition, in these
Words, [Sidenote: Christ _tasted Death for every Man_.]_Christ then
tasted Death for every Man, of all Kinds_. Such is the Evidence of this
Truth, delivered almost wholly in the express Words of Scripture, that
it will not need much Probation. Also, because our Assertion herein is
common with many others, who have both earnestly and soundly, according
to the Scripture, pleaded for this _universal Redemption_, I shall
be the more brief in it, that I may come to that which may seem more
singularly and peculiarly ours.

§. VI. [Sidenote: Christ’_s Redemption universal, contrary to the
Doctrine of_ Absolute Reprobation.] This Doctrine of _universal
Redemption_, or _Christ’s dying for all Men_, is of itself so evident
from the Scripture-Testimony, that there is scarce found any other
Article of the Christian Faith so frequently, so plainly, and so
positively asserted. It is that which maketh the preaching of Christ
to be truly termed the _Gospel_, or an _Annunciation of glad Tidings
to all_. Thus the Angel declared the Birth and Coming of Christ to the
Shepherds to be, _Luke_ ii. 10. _Behold, I bring you good Tidings of
great Joy, which shall be to all People_: He saith not, to _a few_. Now
if this coming of Christ had not brought a Possibility of Salvation
_to all_, it should rather have been accounted bad Tidings of great
Sorrow to most People; neither should the Angel have had Reason to have
sung, _Peace on Earth, and good Will towards Men_, if the greatest
Part of Mankind had been necessarily shut out from receiving any
Benefit by it. How should Christ have sent out his Servants to _preach
the Gospel to every Creature_, Mark xvi. 15. (a very comprehensive
Commission) that is, _to every Son and Daughter of Mankind_, without
all Exception? He commands them to preach _Salvation to all, Repentance
and Remission of Sins to all; warning every one, and exhorting every
one_, as _Paul_ did, _Col._ i. 28. Now how could they have preached the
Gospel _to every Man_, as became the Ministers of Jesus Christ, in much
Assurance, if Salvation by that Gospel had not been possible to all?
What! if some of those had asked them, or should now ask any of these
Doctors, who deny the Universality of Christ’s Death, and yet preach
it to all promiscuously, _Hath Christ died for me?_ How can they, with
Confidence, give a certain Answer to this Question? If they give a
conditional Answer, as their Principle obligeth them to do, and say,
_If thou repent, Christ hath died for thee_; doth not the same Question
still recur? _Hath Christ died for me, so as to make Repentance
possible to me?_ To this they can answer nothing, unless they run in
a Circle; whereas the _Feet of those that bring the glad Tidings of
the Gospel of Peace _are said to be_ beautiful_, for that they preach
the _common Salvation_, Repentance unto all; offering a Door of Mercy
and Hope to all, through _Jesus Christ, who gave himself a Ransom for
all_. [Sidenote: _The Gospel is preached to every Man._] The Gospel
invites all: And certainly, by the Gospel _Christ_ intended not to
deceive and delude the greater Part of Mankind, when he invites, and
crieth, saying; _Come unto me, all ye that are weary and heavy laden,
and I will give you Rest_. If all then ought to seek after him, and to
look for Salvation by him, he must needs have made _Salvation possible_
to _all_; for who is bound to seek after that which is impossible?
Certainly it were a mocking of Men to bid them do so. And such as deny,
that by the Death of Christ _Salvation_ is made _possible to all Men_,
do most blasphemously make God mock the World, in giving his Servants
a Commission to _preach the Gospel of Salvation unto all_, while he
hath before decreed that it shall not be possible for them to receive
it. Would not this make the Lord to send forth his Servants with a
_Lie in their Mouth_, (which were blasphemous to think) commanding
them to bid _all_ and _every one_ believe that Christ died for them,
and had purchased Life and Salvation? [Sidenote: _The Absurdity of
that Doctrine of_ Absolute Reprobation.] whereas it is no such Thing,
according to the fore-mentioned Doctrine. But seeing Christ, after he
arose and perfected the Work of our Redemption, gave a Commission to
preach _Repentance_, _Remission of Sins_, and _Salvation_ to all, it
is manifest that he _died for all_. For He that hath commissionated
his Servants thus to preach, is a _God of Truth_, and no Mocker of
poor Mankind; neither doth he require of any Man that which is simply
impossible for him to do: For that _no Man is bound to do that which
is impossible_, is a Principle of Truth engraven in every Man’s Mind.
And seeing he is both a righteous and merciful God, it cannot at all
stand, either with his Justice or Mercy, to bid such Men _repent_ or
_believe_, to whom it is impossible.

§. VII. Moreover, if we regard the Testimony of the Scripture in
this Matter, where there is not one Scripture, that I know of,
which affirmeth, _Christ not to die for all_, there are divers
that positively and expresly assert, _He did_; [Sidenote: _To pray
for _all_; for Christ died for_ all--] as 1 _Tim._ ii. 1, 3, 4, 6.
_I exhort therefore, that first of all, Supplications, Prayers,
Intercessions, and giving of Thanks, be made for all Men_, &c. _For
this is good and acceptable in the Sight of God our Saviour, who will
have all Men to be saved, and to come to the Knowledge of the Truth;
who gave himself a Ransom for all, to be testified in due Time._ Except
we will have the Apostle here to assert quite another Thing than he
intended, there can be nothing more plain to confirm what we have
asserted. And this Scripture doth well answer to that Manner of arguing
which we have hitherto used: For, first, the Apostle here recommends
them to _pray for all Men_; and to obviate such an Objection, as if
he had said with our Adversaries, _Christ prayed not for the World,
neither willeth he us to pray for all; because he willeth not that all
should be saved, but hath ordained many to be damned, that he might
shew forth his Justice in them_; he obviates, I say, such an Objection,
telling them, that _it is good and acceptable in the Sight of God, who
will have all Men to be saved._ [Sidenote:--_And will have _all_ Men
to be saved._] I desire to know what can be more expresly affirmed?
or can any two Propositions be stated in Terms more contradictory than
these two? _God willeth some not to be saved_; and _God willeth all
Men to be saved_, or God _will have no Man perish_. If we believe the
last, as the Apostle hath affirmed, the first must be destroyed; seeing
of contradictory Propositions, the one being admitted, the other is
destroyed. Whence, to conclude, he gives us a Reason of his Willingness
that all Men should be saved, in these Words, _Who gave himself a
Ransom for all_; as if he would have said, Since Christ died for all,
since he gave himself a Ransom for all, therefore he will have all Men
to be saved. This Christ himself gives as a Reason of God’s Love to
the World, in these Words: _John_ iii. 16. _God so loved the World,
that he gave his only begotten Son, that _whosoever_ believeth in him
should not perish, but have everlasting Life_; compared with 1 _John_
iv. 9. This [_whosoever_] is an indefinite Term, from which no Man is
excluded. From all which then I thus argue:

[Sidenote: _Arg. 1._] For whomsoever it is lawful to pray, to them
Salvation is possible:

But it is lawful to pray for every individual Man in the whole World:

Therefore Salvation is possible unto them.

I prove the _Major Proposition_ thus;

[Sidenote: _Arg. 2._] No Man is bound to pray for that which is
impossible to be attained:

But every Man is bound and commanded to pray for all Men:

Therefore it is not impossible to be obtained.

I prove also this _Proposition_ further, thus;

[Sidenote: _Arg. 3._] No Man is bound to pray, but in Faith:

But he that prayeth for that, which he judges
simply impossible to be obtained, cannot pray in Faith:

Therefore, _&c._


[Sidenote: _Arg. 4._] That which God willeth is not impossible:

But God willeth all Men to be saved:

Therefore it is not impossible.

And Lastly;

[Sidenote: _Arg. 5._] Those for whom our Saviour gave himself a Ransom,
to such Salvation is possible:

But our Saviour gave himself a Ransom for all:

Therefore Salvation is possible.

§. VIII. [Sidenote: _Proof 1._] This is very positively affirmed,
_Heb._ ii. 9. in these Words, _But we see Jesus, who was made a little
lower than the Angels, for the suffering of Death, crowned with Glory
and Honour, that he by the Grace of God might taste Death for every
Man_. He that will but open his Eyes, may see this Truth here asserted:
If he _tasted Death for every Man_, then certainly there is no Man
for whom he did not taste Death; then there is no Man who may not be
made a Sharer of the Benefit of it: For _he came not to condemn the
World, but that the World through him might be saved_, John iii. 17.
_He came not to judge the World, but to save the World_, John xii. 47.
[Sidenote: _Our Adversaries false Doctrine of a great Part of Mankind
being pre-ordained for Damnation, refuted._] Whereas, according to the
Doctrine of our Adversaries, he rather came to condemn the World, and
judge it; and not that it might be saved by him, or to save it. For
if he never came to bring Salvation to the greater Part of Mankind,
but that his Coming, though it could never do them good, yet shall
augment their Condemnation, from thence it necessarily follows, that
he came not of Intention to save, but to judge and condemn the greater
Part of the World, contrary to his own express Testimony; and as the
Apostle _Paul_, in the Words above cited, doth assert affirmatively,
_That God willeth the Salvation of all_, [Sidenote: _Proof 2._] so
doth the Apostle _Peter_ assert negatively, _That he willeth not the
perishing of any_, 2 Pet. iii. 9. _The Lord is not slack concerning
his Promise, as some Men count Slackness, but is long-suffering to
us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come
to Repentance._ And this is correspondent to that of the Prophet
_Ezekiel_, xxxiii. 11. _As I live, saith the Lord, I have no Pleasure
in the Death of the Wicked, but that the Wicked turn from his Way and
live._ If it be safe to believe God, and trust in him, we must not
think that he intends to cheat us by all these Expressions through his
Servants, but that he was in good earnest. And that this Will and
Desire of his hath not taken effect, the Blame is on our Parts, as
shall be after spoken of; which could not be, if we never were in any
Capacity of Salvation, or that Christ had never died for us, but left
us under an Impossibility of Salvation. What mean all those earnest
Invitations, all those serious Expostulations, all those regretting
Contemplations, wherewith the Holy Scriptures are full? As, _Why will
you die, O House of _Israel!_ Why will ye not come unto me, that ye
might have Life? I have waited to be gracious unto you: I have sought
to gather you: I have knocked at the Door of your Hearts: Is not your
Destruction of yourselves? I have called all the Day long._ If Men who
are so invited be under no Capacity of being saved, if Salvation be
impossible unto them, shall we suppose God in this to be no other but
like the Author of a _Romance_, or Master of a _Comedy_, who amuses and
raises the various Affections and Passions of his Spectators by divers
and strange Accidents; sometimes leading them into Hope, and sometimes
into Despair; all those Actions, in effect, being but a mere Illusion,
while he hath appointed what the Conclusion of all shall be?

[Sidenote: _Proof 3._] _Thirdly_, This Doctrine is abundantly confirmed
by that of the Apostle, 1 _John_ ii. 1, 2. _And if any Man sin, we
have an Advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the Righteous. And he
is the Propitiation for our Sins; and not for ours only, but also for
the Sins of the whole World._ [Sidenote: _Adversaries comment on the
Words the_ whole World.] The Way which our Adversaries take to evite
this Testimony, is most foolish and ridiculous: _The [World] here,
_say they,_ is the World of Believers_: For this _Commentary_ we have
nothing but their own Assertion, and so while it manifestly destroys
the Text, may be justly rejected. For, _First_, let them shew me, if
they can, in all the Scripture, where the [_whole World_] is taken
for _Believers_ only; I shall shew them where it is many Times taken
for the quite Contrary; as, _The World knows me not_: _The World
receives me not, I am not of this World_: Besides all these Scriptures,
_Psalm_ xvii. 14. _Isai._ xiii. 11. _Mat._ xviii. 7. _John_ vii. 7.
and viii. 26. and xii. 19. and xiv. 17. and xv. 18, 19. and xvii.
14. and xviii. 20. 1 _Cor._ i. 21. and ii. 12. and vi. 2. _Gal._ vi.
14. _James_ i. 27. 2 _Pet._ ii. 20. 1 _John_ ii. 15. and iii. 1. and
iv. 4, 5, and many more. _Secondly_, The Apostle in this very Place
contra-distinguished the _World_ from the _Saints_ thus; _And not for
ours only, but for the Sins of the whole World_: What means the Apostle
by [_Ours_] here? Is not that the Sins of Believers? Was not he one
of those Believers? And was not this an universal Epistle, written
to all the Saints that then were? So that according to these Men’s
Comment, there should be a very unnecessary and foolish Redundancy in
the Apostle’s Words; as if he had said, _He is a Propitiation not only
for the Sins of all Believers, but for the Sins of all Believers_: Is
not this to make the Apostle’s Words void of good Sense? Let them shew
us wherever there is such a Manner of speaking in all the Scripture,
where any of the Penmen first name the _Believers_ in _Concreto_ with
themselves, and then contra-distinguish them from some other whole
World of Believers? That [_whole World_] if it be of Believers, must
not be the World we live in. But we need no better Interpreter for the
Apostle than himself, who uses the very same Expression and Phrase in
the same Epistle, Ch. v. 19. saying, _We know that we are of God, and
the whole World lieth in Wickedness_. There cannot be found in all the
Scripture two Places which run more parallel; seeing in both the same
Apostle, in the same Epistle to the same Persons, contra-distinguisheth
himself, and the Saints to whom he writes, from the whole World;
which, according to these Men’s Commentary, ought to be understood of
_Believers_: As if _John_ had said, _We know particular Believers are
of God; but the whole World of Believers lieth in Wickedness_. What
absurd wresting of Scripture were this? And yet it may be as well
pleaded for as the other; for they differ not at all. Seeing then that
the Apostle _John_ tells us plainly, That Christ not only died for
him, and for the Saints and Members of the Church of God, to whom he
wrote, but for the _whole World_, let us then hold it for a certain and
undoubted Truth, notwithstanding the Cavils of such as oppose.

This might also be proved from many more Scripture-Testimonies, if
it were at this Season needful. All the _Fathers_, so called, and
_Doctors_ of the Church, for the first four Centuries, preached
this Doctrine; according to which they boldly held forth the Gospel
of Christ, and Efficacy of his Death; [Sidenote: _The _Heathens_
invited to Salvation; none predestinated to Damnation._] inviting and
intreating the _Heathens_ to come and be Partakers of the Benefits of
it, shewing them how there was a _Door_ open for them _all_ to be saved
through Jesus Christ; not telling them that God had predestinated any
of them to Damnation, or had made Salvation impossible to them, by
with-holding Power and Grace, necessary to believe, from them. But of
many of their Sayings, which might be alleged, I shall only instance a

[Sidenote: _Proof 4. The Testimonies of the _Doctors_ and _Fathers_
of the first Church, that Christ died for all._] _Augustine_ on the
xcvth _Psalm_ saith, “The Blood of Christ is of so great Worth, that
it is of no less Value than the whole World.” _Prosper ad Gall._ c. 9.
“The Redeemer of the World gave his Blood for the World, and the World
would not be Redeemed, because the Darkness did not receive the Light.
He that saith, the Saviour was not crucified for the Redemption of the
whole World, looks not to the Virtue of the Sacrament, but to the Part
of Infidels; since the Blood of our Lord Jesus Christ is the Price of
the whole World; from which Redemption they are Strangers, who either
delighting in their Captivity would not be Redeemed, or after they were
Redeemed returned to the same Servitude.”

The same _Prosper_, in his Answer to _Vincentius_’s first Objection:
“Seeing therefore because of one common Nature and Cause in Truth,
undertaken by our Lord, all are rightly said to be Redeemed, and
nevertheless all are not brought out of Captivity; the Property of
Redemption without doubt belongeth to those from whom the Prince of
this World is shut out, and now are not Vessels of the Devil, but
Members of Christ; whole Death was so bestowed upon Mankind, that it
belonged to the Redemption of such who were not to be regenerated. But
so, that that which was done by the Example of one for all, might,
by a singular Mystery, be celebrated in every one. For the Cup of
Immortality, which is made up of our Infirmity and the Divine Power,
hath indeed that in it which may Profit all; but if it be not drank, it
doth not heal.”

The Author _de Vocat. Gentium_, Lib. 11. Cap. 6. “There is no Cause
to doubt but that our Lord Jesus Christ died for Sinners and wicked
Men. And if there can be any found, who may be said not to be of this
Number, Christ hath not died for all; he made himself a Redeemer for
the whole World.”

_Chrysostom_ on _John_ i. “If he enlightens every Man coming into the
World, how comes it that so many Men remain without Light? For all do
not so much as acknowledge Christ. How then doth he enlighten every
Man? He illuminates indeed so far as in him is; but if any of their
own accord, closing the Eyes of their Mind, will not direct their
Eyes unto the Beams of this Light, [Sidenote: _The Cause they remain
in Darkness._] the Cause that they remain in Darkness is not from the
Nature of the Light, but through their own Malignity, who willingly
have rendered themselves unworthy of so great a Gift. But why believed
they not? Because they would not: Christ did his Part.”

The _Arelatensian_ Synod, held about the Year 490, “Pronounced him
accursed, who should say that Christ hath not died for all, or that he
would not have all Men to be saved.”

_Ambr._ on _Psalm_ cxviii. _Serm. 8._ “The mystical Sun of
Righteousness is arisen to all; he came to all; he suffered for all;
and rose again for all: And therefore he suffered, that he might take
away the Sin of the World. But if any one believe not in Christ, he
robs himself of this general Benefit, [Sidenote: _The Sun-Beams shut
out, heat not._] even as if one by closing the Windows should hold out
the Sun-Beams. The Sun is not therefore not arisen to all, because
such an one hath so robbed himself of its Heat: But the Sun keeps its
Prerogative; it is such an one’s Imprudence that he shuts himself out
from the common Benefit of the Light.”

The same Man, in his 11th Book of _Cain_ and _Abel_, Cap. 13. saith,
“Therefore he brought unto all the Means of Health, that whosoever
should perish, may ascribe to himself the Causes of his Death, who
would not be cured when he had the Remedy by which he might have

§. IX. Seeing then that this Doctrine of the Universality of Christ’s
Death is so certain and agreeable to the Scripture-Testimony, and to
the Sense of the purest Antiquity, it may be wondered how so many,
some whereof have been esteemed not only Learned, but also Pious, have
been capable to fall into so gross and strange an Error. But the Cause
of this doth evidently appear, in that the Way and Method by which
the Virtue and Efficacy of his Death is communicated to all Men, hath
not been rightly understood, or indeed hath been erroneously taught.
[Sidenote: Pelagian _Errors._] The _Pelagians_, ascribing all to Man’s
Will and Nature, denied Man to have any Seed of Sin conveyed to him
from _Adam_. And the _Semi-Pelagians_, making Grace as a Gift following
upon Man’s Merit, or right improving of his Nature, according to the
known Principle, _Facienti quod in se est, Deus non denegat gratiam_.

[Sidenote: _Extremes fallen into by some, making God the Author of
Sin._] This gave _Augustine_, _Prosper_, and some others Occasion,
labouring, in Opposition to these Opinions, to magnify the Grace of
God, and paint out the Corruptions of Man’s Nature (as the Proverb is
of those that seek to make straight a crooked Stick) to incline to the
other Extreme. So also the Reformers, _Luther_ and others, finding
among other Errors the strange Expressions used by some of the Popish
Scholasticks concerning Free-Will, and how much the Tendency of their
Principles is to exalt Man’s Nature and lessen God’s Grace, having all
those Sayings of _Augustine_ and others for a Pattern, through the like
Mistake run upon the same Extreme: Though afterwards the _Lutherans_,
seeing how far _Calvin_ and his Followers drove this Matter, (who, as
a Man of subtle and profound judgment, foreseeing where it would land,
resolved above-board to assert that God had decreed the Means as well
as the End, and therefore had ordained Men to sin, and excites them
thereto, which he labours earnestly to defend) and that there was no
avoiding the making of God the Author of Sin, thereby received Occasion
to discern the Falsity of this Doctrine, and disclaimed it, as appears
by the latter Writings of _Melancthon_, and the _Mompelgartensian_
Conference, [65]where _Lucas Osiander_, one of the Collocutors, terms
it _Impious_; calls it a making _God the Author of Sin_, and an _horrid
and horrible Blasphemy_. Yet because none of those who have asserted
this universal Redemption since the Reformation have given a clear,
distinct, and satisfactory Testimony how it is communicated to all, and
so have fallen short of fully declaring the Perfection of the Gospel
Dispensation, others have been thereby the more strengthened in their
Errors; which I shall illustrate by one singular Example.

[65] _Epit. Hist. Eccl. _Lucæ Osiand. Cent. 16._ l. 4. Cap. 32._

The _Arminians_, and other Assertors of universal Grace, use this as a
chief Argument.

_That which every Man is bound to believe, is true_:

_But every Man is bound to believe that Christ died for him_:

_Therefore_, &c.

[Sidenote: Remonstrants _Opinion strengthens the precise Decree of
Reprobation_.] Of this Argument the other Party deny the Assumption,
saying; That _they who never heard of Christ, are not obliged to
believe in him_; _and seeing the Remonstrants _(as they are commonly
called)_ do generally themselves acknowledge, that without the outward
Knowledge of Christ there is no Salvation_, that gives the other Party
yet a stronger Argument for their precise Decree of Reprobation. _For,
_say they,_ seeing we all see really, and in effect, that God hath
with-held from many Generations, and yet from Nations, that Knowledge
which is absolutely needful to Salvation, and so hath rendered it
simply impossible unto them; Why may he not as well with-hold the
Grace necessary to make a saving Application of that Knowledge,
where it is preached? For there is no Ground to say, That this were
Injustice in God, or Partiality, more than his leaving those others in
utter Ignorance; the one being but a with-holding Grace to apprehend
the Object of Faith, the other a withdrawing the Object itself._
For answer to this, they are forced to draw a Conclusion from their
former _Hypothesis_ of Christ’s dying for all, and God’s Mercy and
Justice, saying, That _if these _Heathens,_ who live in those remote
Places, where the outward Knowledge of Christ is not, did improve that
common Knowledge they have, to whom the outward Creation is for an
Object of Faith, by which they may gather that there is a God, then
the Lord would by some Providence, either send an Angel to tell them
of Christ, or convey the Scriptures to them, or bring them some Way
an Opportunity to meet with such as might inform them._ Which, as it
gives always too much to the Power and Strength of Man’s Will and
Nature, and favours a little of _Socinianism_ and _Pelagianism_, or at
least of _Semi-Pelagianism_, so, since it is only built upon probable
Conjectures, neither hath it Evidence enough to convince any strongly
tainted with the other Doctrine; nor yet doth it make the Equity and
wonderful Harmony of God’s Mercy and Justice towards _ALL_ so manifest
to the Understanding. So that I have often observed, that these
Assertors of Universal Grace did far more pithily and strongly overturn
the false Doctrine of their Adversaries, than they did establish and
confirm the Truth and Certainty of their own. [Sidenote: _None, by an
irrevocable Decree, excluded from Salvation._] And though they have
Proof sufficient from the Holy Scriptures to confirm the Universality
of Christ’s Death, and that none are precisely, by any irrevocable
Decree, excluded from Salvation, yet I find when they are pressed in
the Respects above-mentioned, to shew how God hath so far equally
extended the Capacity to partake of the Benefit of Christ’s Death unto
all, as to communicate unto them a sufficient Way of so doing, they are
somewhat in a Strait, and are put more to give us their Conjectures
from the Certainty of the former pre-supposed Truth, to wit, that
because Christ hath certainly died for all, and God hath not rendered
Salvation impossible to any, therefore there must be some Way or other
by which they may be saved; which must be by improving some common
Grace, or by gathering from the Works of Creation and Providence, than
by really demonstrating, by convincing and spiritual Arguments, what
that Way is.

§. X. It falls out then, that as Darkness, and the great Apostasy,
came not upon the Christian World all at once, but by several Degrees,
one Thing making way for another; until that thick and gross Veil
came to be overspread, wherewith the Nations were so blindly covered,
from the _seventh_ and _eighth_, until the _sixteenth Century_; even
as the Darkness of the Night comes not upon the outward Creation at
once, but by Degrees, according as the Sun declines in each Horizon;
so neither did that full and clear Light and Knowledge of the glorious
Dispensation of the Gospel of Christ appear all at once; the Work of
the first Witnesses being more to testify against and discover the
Abuses of the Apostasy, than to establish the Truth in Purity. He that
comes to build a new City, must first remove the old Rubbish, before he
can see to lay a new Foundation; and he that comes to an House greatly
polluted and full of Dirt, will first sweep away and remove the Filth,
before he put up his own good and new Furniture. The dawning of the
Day dispels the Darkness, and makes us see the Things that are most
conspicuous: But the distinct discovering and discerning of Things,
so as to make a certain and perfect Observation, is reserved for the
arising of the Sun, and its shining in full Brightness. And we can,
from a certain Experience, boldly affirm, that the not waiting for
this, but building among, yea, and with, the _Old Popish Rubbish_,
and setting up before a full Purgation, hath been to most Protestants
the Foundation of many a Mistake, and an Occasion of unspeakable Hurt.
[Sidenote: _The more full Discovery of the Gospel reserved to this our
Age._] Therefore the Lord God, who as he seeth meet doth communicate
and make known to Man the more full, evident, and perfect Knowledge
of his everlasting Truth, hath been pleased to reserve the more full
Discovery of this Glorious and Evangelical Dispensation to this our
Age; albeit divers Testimonies have thereunto been borne by some noted
Men in several Ages, as shall hereafter appear. And for the greater
Augmentation of the Glory of his Grace, that no Man might have whereof
to boast, he hath raised up a few _despicable and illiterate Men_,
and for the most Part _Mechanicks_, to be the Dispensers of it; by
which Gospel all the Scruples, Doubts, Hesitations and Objections
above-mentioned are easily and evidently answered, and the Justice as
well as Mercy of God, according to their divine and heavenly Harmony,
are exhibited, established, and confirmed. According to which certain
Light and Gospel, as the Knowledge thereof has been manifested to us by
the Revelation of Jesus Christ _in us_, fortified by our own sensible
Experience, and sealed by the Testimony of the Spirit in our Hearts, we
can confidently affirm, and clearly evince, according to the Testimony
of the Holy Scriptures, the following Points:

§. XI. [Sidenote: Prop. I.] First, _That God_, who out of his infinite
Love sent his Son, the Lord Jesus Christ, into the World, [Sidenote:
_A day of Visitation to all._] who tasted Death for every Man, _hath
given to every Man_, whether _Jew_ or _Gentile_, _Turk_ or _Scythian_,
_Indian_ or _Barbarian_, of whatsoever Nation, Country, or Place, _a
certain Day or Time of Visitation; during which Day or Time it is
possible for them to be saved, and to partake of the Fruit of Christ’s

[Sidenote: Prop. II.] [Sidenote: _A Measure of Light in all._]
Secondly, _That for this End God hath communicated and given unto every
Man a Measure of the Light of his own Son, a Measure of Grace, or a
Measure of the Spirit_, which the Scripture expresses by several Names,
as sometimes of the _Seed of the Kingdom_, Mat. xiii. 18, 19. _the
Light that makes all Things manifest_, Ephes. v. 13. _the Word of God_,
Rom. x. 17. or _Manifestation of the Spirit given to profit withal_, 1
Cor. xii. 7. _A Talent_, Mat. xxv. 15. _A little Leaven_, Mat. xiii.
33. the _Gospel preached in every Creature_, Col. i. 23.

[Sidenote: Prop. III.] Thirdly, _That God, in and by this Light and
Seed, invites, calls, exhorts, and strives with every Man, in order
to save him_; [Sidenote: _God’s Salvation wrought by the Light in
all._] which, as it is received and not resisted, works the Salvation
of _all_, even of those who are ignorant of the Death and Sufferings
of Christ, and of _Adam_’s Fall, both by bringing them to a Sense of
their own _Misery_, and to be Sharers in the Sufferings of Christ
inwardly, and by making them Partakers of his Resurrection, in becoming
Holy, Pure, and Righteous, and recovered out of their Sins. By which
also are saved they that have the Knowledge of Christ outwardly, in
that it opens their Understanding rightly to use and apply the Things
delivered in the Scriptures, and to receive the saving Use of them: But
_that this may be resisted and rejected in both, in which then God is
said to be resisted and pressed down, and Christ to be again crucified,
and put to open Shame in and among Men_. And to those who thus resist
and refuse him, he becomes their Condemnation.

[Sidenote: _Conseq. 1._] First then, According to this Doctrine
_the Mercy of God is excellently well exhibited_, in that none are
necessarily shut out from Salvation; and his Justice is demonstrated,
in that he condemns none but such to whom he really made offer of
Salvation, affording them the Means sufficient thereunto.

[Sidenote: _Conseq. 2._] Secondly, This Doctrine, if well weighed,
will be found to be the _Foundation of Christianity, Salvation, and

[Sidenote: _Conseq. 3._] Thirdly, It agrees and answers _with the whole
Tenor of the Gospel Promises and Threats, and with the Nature of the
Ministry of Christ_; according to which, the Gospel, Salvation, and
Repentance are commanded to be preached to every Creature, without
Respect of Nations, Kindred, Families or Tongues.

[Sidenote: _Conseq. 4._] Fourthly, _It magnifies and commends the
Merits and Death of Christ_, in that it not only accounts them
sufficient to save all, but declares them to be brought so nigh unto
all, as thereby to be put into the nearest Capacity of Salvation.

[Sidenote: _Conseq. 5._] Fifthly, _It exalts above all the Grace of
God_, to which it attributeth all Good, even the least and smallest
Actions that are so; ascribing thereunto not only the first Beginnings
and Motions of Good, but also the whole Conversion and Salvation of the

[Sidenote: _Conseq. 6._] Sixthly, _It contradicts, overturns, and
enervates the false Doctrine of the_ Pelagians, Semi-Pelagians,
Socinians, _and others_, who exalt the Light of Nature, the Liberty
of Man’s Will, in that it wholly excludes the natural Man from having
any Place or Portion in his own Salvation, by any acting, moving,
or working of his own, until he be first quickened, raised up, and
actuated by God’s Spirit.

[Sidenote: _Conseq. 7._] Seventhly, _As it makes the whole Salvation of
Man solely and alone to depend upon God, so it makes his Condemnation
wholly and in every Respect to be of himself_, in that he refused and
resisted somewhat that from God wrestled and strove in his Heart,
and forces him to acknowledge God’s just judgment in rejecting and
forsaking of him.

[Sidenote: _Conseq. 8._] Eighthly, _It takes away all Ground of
Despair_, in that it gives every one Cause of Hope and certain
Assurance that they may be saved; _neither doth feed any in Security_,
in that none are certain how soon their Day may expire: And therefore
it is a constant Incitement and Provocation, and lively Encouragement
to every Man, to forsake Evil, and close with that which is Good.

[Sidenote: _Conseq. 9._] Ninthly, _It wonderfully commends as well the
Certainty of the Christian Religion among _Infidels_, as it manifests
its own Verity to all_, in that it is confirmed and established by the
Experience of all Men; seeing there was never yet a Man found in any
Place of the Earth, however barbarous and wild, but hath acknowledged
that at some Time or other, less or more, he hath found _somewhat_
in his Heart reproving him for some Things evil which he hath done,
threatening a certain Horror if he continued in them, as also promising
and communicating a certain Peace and Sweetness, as he has given Way to
it, and not resisted it.

[Sidenote: _Conseq. 10._] Tenthly, _It wonderfully sheweth the
excellent Wisdom of God_, by which he hath made the Means of Salvation
so universal and comprehensive, that it is not needful to recur to
those miraculous and strange Ways; seeing, according to this most true
Doctrine, the Gospel reacheth all, of whatsoever Condition, Age, or

[Sidenote: _Conseq. 11._] Eleventhly, _It is really and effectively,
_though not in so many Words, yet by Deeds,_ established and confirmed
by all the Preachers, Promulgators, and Doctors of the _Christian
Religion_ that ever were, or now are, even by those that otherways in
their Judgment oppose this Doctrine_, in that they all, whatever they
have been or are, or whatsoever People, Place, or Country they come
to, do preach to the People, and to every Individual among them, that
they may be saved; intreating and desiring them to believe in Christ,
who hath died for them. So that what they deny in the general, they
acknowledge of every Particular; there being no Man to whom they do not
preach in order to Salvation, telling him _Jesus Christ calls and wills
him to believe and be saved_; and that if he refuse, he shall therefore
be condemned, and that his Condemnation is of himself. Such is the
Evidence and Virtue of Truth, that it constrains its Adversaries, even
against their Wills, to plead for it.

[Sidenote: _Conseq. 12._] Lastly, According to this Doctrine the former
Argument used by the _Arminians_, and evited by the _Calvinists_,
concerning every Man’s being bound to believe that _Christ died for
him_, is, by altering the Assumption, _rendered invincible_; thus,

_That which every Man is bound to believe, is true_:

_But every man is bound to believe that God is merciful unto him_:

_Therefore_, &c.

This Assumption no Man can deny, seeing _his Mercies_ are said to be
_over all his Works_. And herein the Scripture every Way declares
the _Mercy of God_ to be, in that he invites and calls Sinners to
Repentance, and hath opened a Way of Salvation for them: So that
though those Men be not bound to believe the _History of Christ’s
Death and Passion_ who never came to know of it, yet they are bound to
believe that God will be merciful to them, if they follow his Ways,
and that he is merciful unto them, in that he reproves them for Evil,
and encourages them to Good. [Sidenote: _Our Adversaries unmerciful
Assertion of God._] Neither ought any Man to believe that God is
unmerciful to him, or that he hath from the Beginning, ordained him to
come into the World that he might be left to his own evil Inclinations,
and so do wickedly as a Means appointed by God to bring him to eternal
Damnation; which, were it true, as our Adversaries affirm it to be
of many Thousands, I see no Reason why a Man might not believe; for
certainly a Man may believe the Truth.

As it manifestly appears from the Thing itself, that these good and
excellent Consequences follow from the Belief of this Doctrine, so
from the Proof of them it will yet more evidently appear; to which
before I come, it is requisite to speak somewhat concerning the State
of the Controversy, which will bring great Light to the Matter: For
from the not right understanding of a Matter under Debate, sometimes
both Arguments on the one Hand, and Objections on the other, are
brought, which do no Way hit the Case; and hereby also our Sense and
Judgment therein will be more fully understood and opened.

§. XII. [Sidenote: Quest. 1.] [Sidenote: _The stating of the
Question._] First then, by this _Day and Time of Visitation_, which
we say God gives unto all, during which they may be saved, _we do not
understand the whole Time of every Man’s Life_; though to some it may
be extended even to the very Hour of Death, as we see in the Example
of the Thief converted upon the Cross: But _such a Season at least as
sufficiently exonerateth God of every Man’s Condemnation_, which to
some may be sooner, and to others later, according as the Lord in his
Wisdom sees meet. [Sidenote: _That many may out-live the Day of God’s
Visitation._] So that many Men may out-live this Day, after which there
may be no Possibility of Salvation to them, and God justly suffers them
to be hardened, as a just Punishment of their Unbelief, and even raises
them up as Instruments of Wrath, and makes them a Scourge one against
another. Whence to Men in this Condition may be fitly applied those
Scriptures which are abused to prove _that God incites Men necessarily
to sin_: This is notably expressed by the Apostle, _Rom._ i. from Ver.
17. to the End, but especially Ver. 28. _And even as they did not like
to retain God in their Knowledge, God gave them up to a Reprobate Mind,
to do those Things which are not convenient._ That many may out-live
this Day of God’s gracious Visitation unto them, is shewn by the
Example of _Esau_, _Heb._ xii. 16, 17. who _sold his Birthright_ So he
had it once, and was capable to have kept it; but afterwards when he
would have inherited the Blessing, he was rejected. This appears also
by Christ’s weeping over _Jerusalem_, _Luke_ xix. 42. saying, _If thou
hadst known in this thy Day the Things that belong unto thy Peace; but
now they are hid from thine Eyes_. Which plainly imports a Time when
they might have known them, which now was removed from them, though
they were yet alive; but of this more shall be said hereafter.

§. XIII. [Sidenote: Quest. 2.] Secondly, _By this Seed, Grace, and
Word of God, and Light wherewith, _we say,_ every one is enlightened_,
and hath a Measure of it, which strives with him in order to save him,
and which may, by the Stubbornness and Wickedness of Man’s Will, be
quenched, bruised, wounded, pressed down, slain and crucified, _we
understand not the proper Essence and Nature of God precisely taken,
which is not divisible into Parts and Measures, _as being a_ most pure,
simple Being, void of all Composition or Division_, and therefore can
neither be resisted, hurt, wounded, crucified, or slain by all the
Efforts and Strength of Men; [Sidenote: _The Light what it is, and its
Properties described._] _but we understand a spiritual, heavenly, and
invisible Principle, in which God, as Father, Son, and Spirit, dwells_;
a Measure of which divine and glorious Life is _in all Men, _as a_
Seed_, [66]which of its own Nature draws, invites, and inclines to God;
and this some call _Vehiculum Dei_, or the _spiritual Body of Christ,
the Flesh and Blood of Christ, which came down from Heaven_, of which
all the Saints do feed, and are thereby nourished unto eternal Life.
And as every unrighteous Action is witnessed against and reproved by
this _Light_ and _Seed_, so by such Actions it is hurt, wounded, and
slain, and flees from them even as the Flesh of Man flees from that
which is of a contrary Nature to it. Now because it is never separated
from God nor Christ, [67]but wherever it is, God and Christ are as
wrapped up therein, therefore and in that Respect as it is resisted,
God is said to be resisted; and where it is borne down, God is said
to be pressed _as a Cart under Sheaves_, and Christ is said to be
slain and crucified. And on the contrary, as this Seed is received in
the Heart, and suffered to bring forth its natural and proper Effect,
Christ comes to be formed and raised, of which the Scripture makes
so much Mention, calling it _the new Man_, _Christ within, the Hope
of Glory_. This is that _Christ within_, which we are heard so much
to speak and declare of, every where preaching him up, and exhorting
People to believe in the _Light_, and obey it, that they may come to
know _Christ in them_, to deliver them from all Sin.

[66] _Cant. 3. 9._

[67] 1 Tim. vi. 16.

But by this, as we do not at all intend to _equal ourselves_ to that
Holy Man the _Lord Jesus Christ_, who was born of the Virgin _Mary_, in
whom all the Fulness of the Godhead dwelt bodily, [Sidenote: _That the
Fulness of the Godhead dwells in Christ bodily_, &c.] so neither do we
_destroy the Reality of his present Existence_, as some have falsely
calumniated us. For though we affirm that Christ dwells in us, yet not
immediately, but mediately as he is in that _Seed_ which is _in us_;
whereas he, to wit, the _Eternal Word_, which was with God, and was
God, dwelt immediately in that Holy Man. He then is as the Head, and
we as the Members; he the Vine, and we the Branches. Now as the Soul
of Man dwells otherwise and in a far more immediate Manner in the Head
and in the Heart than in the Hands or Legs, and as the Sap, Virtue,
and Life of the Vine lodgeth far otherwise in the Stock and Root than
in the Branches, so God dwelleth otherwise in the Man _Jesus_ than in
us. We also freely reject the Heresy of _Apollinarius_, who denied him
to have any Soul, but said the Body was only actuated by the Godhead.
As also the Error of _Eutyches_, who made the Manhood to be wholly
swallowed up of the Godhead. Wherefore, as we believe he was a true and
real Man, so we also believe that he continues so to be glorified in
the Heavens in Soul and Body, by whom God shall judge the World, in the
great and general Day of Judgment.

§. XIV. [Sidenote: Quest. 3.] [Sidenote: _That the Light is a Spiritual
Substance, which may be felt in the Soul and apprehended._] Thirdly,
_We understand not this Seed, Light, or Grace to be an Accident, as
most Men ignorantly do, but a real spiritual Substance_, which the
Soul of Man is capable to feel and apprehend, from which that real,
spiritual, inward Birth in Believers arises, called _the New Creature_,
the _New Man in the Heart_. This seems strange to Carnal-minded Men,
because they are not acquainted with it; but we know it, and are
sensible of it, by a true and certain Experience. Though it be hard for
Man in his natural Wisdom to comprehend it until he come to feel it in
himself, and if he should, holding it in the mere Notion it would avail
him little, yet we are able to make it appear to be true, and that our
Faith concerning it is not without a solid Ground: For it is in and by
this inward and substantial Seed in our Hearts as it comes to receive
Nourishment, and to have a Birth or Geniture _in_ us, that we come to
have those spiritual Senses raised by which we are made capable of
_tasting_, _smelling_, _seeing_, and _handling_ the Things of God: For
a Man cannot reach unto those Things by his natural Spirit and Senses,
as is above declared.

Next, We know it to be a _Substance_, because it subsists _in_ the
Hearts of wicked Men, even while they are in their Wickedness, as
shall be hereafter proved more at large. Now no _Accident_ can be in a
_Subject_ without it give the Subject its own Denomination; as where
_Whiteness_ is in a Subject, there the Subject is called _White_.
[Sidenote: _The Degrees of its Operation in the Soul of Man._] So
we distinguish betwixt _Holiness_, as it is an _Accident_, which
denominates Man so, as the Seed receives a Place _in him_, and betwixt
the _holy substantial Seed_, which many Times lies _in Man’s Heart_
as a naked Grain in the stony Ground. So also as we may distinguish
betwixt _Health_ and _Medicine_; _Health_ cannot be in a Body without
the Body be called _Healthful_, because _Health_ is an Accident; but
_Medicine_ may be in a Body that is most unhealthful, for that it is
a Substance. And as when a _Medicine_ begins to work, the Body may in
some Respect be called _Healthful_, and in some Respect _Unhealthful_,
so we acknowledge as this _divine Medicine_ receives Place in _Man’s
Heart_, it may denominate him in some Part Holy and Good, though there
remain yet a corrupted unmortified Part, or some Part of the evil
Humours unpurged out; for where two contrary Accidents are in one
Subject, as _Health_ and _Sickness_ in a Body, the Subject receives its
Denomination from the Accident which prevails most. So many Men are
called Saints, good and holy Men, and that truly, when this holy Seed
hath wrought _in them_ in a good Measure, and hath somewhat leavened
them into its Nature, though they may be yet liable to many Infirmities
and Weaknesses, yea, and to some Iniquities; for as the Seed of Sin and
Ground of Corruption, yea, and the Capacity of yielding thereunto, and
sometimes actually falling, doth not denominate a good and holy Man
_impious_; so neither doth the Seed of Righteousness in evil Men, and
the Possibility of their becoming one with it, denominate them _good_
or _holy_.

§. XV. [Sidenote: Quest. 4.] Fourthly, _We do not hereby intend any
ways to lessen or derogate from the Atonement and Sacrifice of Jesus
Christ_; but on the contrary do magnify and exalt it. For as we believe
all those Things to have been certainly transacted which are recorded
in the Holy Scriptures concerning the _Birth_, _Life_, _Miracles_,
_Sufferings_, _Resurrection and Ascension of Christ_; so we do also
believe that it is the Duty of every one to believe it to whom it
pleases God to reveal the same, and to bring to them the Knowledge of
it; yea, we believe it were _damnable Unbelief_ not to believe it, when
so declared; but to resist that holy Seed, which as minded would lead
and incline every one to believe it as it is offered unto them, though
it revealeth not in every one the outward and explicit Knowledge of
it, nevertheless it always assenteth to it, _ubi declaratur_, where it
is declared. Nevertheless as we firmly believe it was necessary that
Christ should come, that by his Death and Sufferings he might offer up
himself a Sacrifice to God for our Sins, who his own self _bare our
Sins in his own Body on the Tree_; so we believe that the Remission
of Sins which any partake of, is only in and by Virtue of that most
satisfactory Sacrifice, and no otherwise. [Sidenote: _That Remission
of Sins is only and alone by Christ._] For it is _by the Obedience of
that One that the Free-gift is come upon all to Justification_. For
we affirm, that as all Men partake of the Fruit of _Adam_’s Fall, in
that by Reason of that evil Seed, which through him is communicated
unto them, they are prone and inclined unto Evil, though Thousands of
Thousands be ignorant of _Adam_’s Fall, neither ever knew of the Eating
of the Forbidden Fruit; so also many may come to feel the Influence of
this Holy and Divine _Seed_ and _Light_, and be turned from Evil to
Good by it, though they knew nothing of Christ’s coming in the Flesh,
through whose Obedience and Sufferings it is purchased unto them.
And as we affirm it is absolutely needful that those do believe the
History of Christ’s outward Appearance, whom it pleased God to bring to
the Knowledge of it; so we do freely confess, that even that outward
Knowledge is very comfortable to such as are subject to and led by
the inward _Seed_ and _Light_. For not only doth the Sense of Christ’s
Love and Sufferings tend to humble them, but they are thereby also
strengthened in their Faith, and encouraged to follow that excellent
Pattern which he hath left us, _who suffered for us_, as saith the
Apostle _Peter_, 1 _Pet._ ii. 21: _Leaving us an Example that we should
follow his Steps_: And many Times we are greatly edified and refreshed
with the gracious Sayings which proceed out of his Mouth. [Sidenote:
_The History is profitable with the Mystery._] The _History_ then is
profitable and comfortable with the _Mystery_, and never without it;
but the _Mystery_ is and may be profitable without the explicit and
outward Knowledge of the History.

[Sidenote: Quest. 5. _How Christ is in all Men._] But _Fifthly_,
This brings us to another Question, to wit, _Whether Christ be in
all Men or no?_ Which sometimes hath been asked us, and Arguments
brought against it; because indeed it is to be found in some of our
Writings that _Christ is in all Men_; and we often are heard, in our
publick _Meetings_ and _Declarations_, to desire every Man to know
and be acquainted with _Christ in them_, telling them that _Christ is
in them_; it is fit therefore, for removing of all Mistakes, to say
something in this Place concerning this Matter. We have said before,
how that _a divine, spiritual, and supernatural Light is in all Men_;
how that _that divine supernatural Light or Seed is_ Vehiculum Dei; how
that _God and Christ dwelleth in it, and is never separated from it_;
also how that, _as it is received and closed with in the Heart, Christ
comes to be formed and brought forth_: But we are far from ever having
said, _That Christ is thus formed in all Men, _or_ in the Wicked_: For
that is a great Attainment, which the Apostle travailed that it might
be brought forth in the _Galatians_. Neither is _Christ in all Men_ by
Way of _Union_, or indeed, to speak strictly, by Way of _Inhabitation_;
because this _Inhabitation_, as it is generally taken, imports _Union_,
or _the Manner of Christ’s being in the Saints_: As it is written, _I
will dwell in them, and walk in them_, 2 _Cor._ vi. 16. But in regard,
_Christ is in all Men_ as in a _Seed_, yea, and that he never is nor
can be separate from that _holy pure Seed_ and _Light_ which is _in
all Men_; therefore may it be said in a larger Sense, that he is _in
all_, even as we observed before. The Scripture saith, _Amos_ ii. 13.
God _is pressed down as a Cart under Sheaves_, and _Christ crucified
in the Ungodly_; though to speak properly and strictly, neither can
_God be pressed down_, nor _Christ_, as _God_, be _crucified_. In this
Respect then, as he is _in the Seed_ which is in _all Men_, we have
said _Christ is in all Men_, and have preached and directed all Men to
_Christ in them_, [Sidenote: _Christ crucified in Man by Iniquities._]
who lies crucified in them by their Sins and Iniquities, that they may
_look upon him whom they have pierced_, and repent: Whereby he that
now lies as it were slain and buried _in them_, may come to be raised,
and have Dominion in their Hearts over all. And thus also the Apostle
_Paul_ preached to the _Corinthians_ and _Galatians_, 1 _Cor._ ii. 2.
_Christ crucified in them_, [Greek: en hymin: εν ὑμιν], as the _Greek_
hath it. This _Jesus Christ_ was that which the Apostle desired to
know _in them_, and make known _unto them_, that they might come to be
sensible how they had thus been _crucifying Christ_, that so they might
repent and be saved. And forasmuch as Christ is called that _Light that
enlightens every Man, the Light of the World_, therefore the _Light_
is taken for _Christ_, who truly is the Fountain of _Light_, and hath
his Habitation in it for ever. Thus the _Light of Christ_ is sometimes
called _Christ_, i. e. that in which Christ is, and from which he is
never separated.

§. XVI. _Sixthly_, It will manifestly appear by what is above said,
that _we understand not this Divine Principle to be any Part of Man’s
Nature, nor yet to be any Reliques of any Good which _Adam_ lost by
his Fall_, in that we make it a distinct separate Thing from Man’s
Soul, and all the Faculties of it: Yet such is the _Malice_ of our
Adversaries, that they cease not sometimes to calumniate us, as if we
preached up a natural Light, or the Light of Man’s natural Conscience.
Next there are those that lean to the Doctrine of _Socinus_ and
_Pelagius_, who persuade themselves through Mistake, and out of no ill
Design to injure us, as if this which we preach up were some natural
Power and Faculty of the Soul, and that we only differ in the wording
of it, and not in the Thing itself; whereas there can be no greater
Difference than is betwixt us in that Matter: For we certainly know
that this _Light_ of which we speak is not only distinct, but of a
different Nature from the Soul of Man, and its Faculties. [Sidenote:
_The Faculties of Man’s Reason._] Indeed that Man, as he is a rational
Creature, hath Reason as a natural Faculty of his Soul, by which he can
discern Things that are Rational, we deny not; for this is a Property
natural and essential to him, by which he can know and learn many Arts
and Sciences, beyond what any other Animal can do by the mere animal
Principle. Neither do we deny but by this rational Principle Man may
apprehend in his Brain, and in the Notion, a Knowledge of God and
spiritual Things; yet that not being the right Organ, as in the second
Proposition hath more at length been signified, it cannot profit him
towards Salvation, but rather hindereth; and indeed the great Cause
of the Apostasy hath been, that Man hath sought to fathom the Things
of God in and by this natural and rational Principle, and to build
up a Religion in it, neglecting and overlooking this Principle and
Seed of God in the Heart; [Sidenote: _Anti-Christ in the Temple of
God._] so that herein, in the most universal and catholick Sense, hath
_Anti-Christ in every Man set up himself, and sitteth in the Temple
of God as God, and above every Thing that is called God_. For _Men
being the Temple of the Holy Ghost_, as saith the Apostle, 1 _Cor._
iii. 16. when the rational Principle sets up itself there above the
Seed of God, to reign and rule as a Prince in spiritual Things, while
the Holy Seed is wounded and bruised, there is _Anti-Christ in every
Man_, or somewhat exalted above and against Christ. Nevertheless we do
not hereby affirm as if Man had received his Reason to no Purpose, or
to be of no Service unto him, in no wise; we look upon Reason as fit
to order and rule Man in Things natural. [Sidenote: _The Divine Light
and natural Reason distinguished._] For as God gave two great Lights
to rule the outward World, the Sun and Moon, the greater Light to rule
the Day, and the lesser Light to rule the Night; so hath he given Man
the Light of his Son, a Spiritual Divine Light, to rule him in Things
Spiritual, and the Light of Reason to rule him in Things Natural. And
even as the Moon borrows her Light from the Sun, so ought Men, if
they would be rightly and comfortably ordered in natural Things, to
have their Reason enlightened by this divine and pure Light. Which
enlightened Reason, in those that obey and follow this true Light,
we confess may be useful to Man even in Spiritual Things, as it is
still subservient and subject to the other; even as the animal Life
in Man, regulated and ordered by his Reason, helps him in going about
Things that are rational. [Sidenote: _The Light distinguished from
Man’s natural Conscience._] We do further rightly distinguish this
from Man’s natural Conscience; for Conscience being that in Man which
ariseth from the natural Faculties of Man’s Soul, may be defiled and
corrupted. It is said expresly of the Impure, _Tit._ i. 15. _That
even their Mind and Conscience is defiled_; but this Light can never
be corrupted nor defiled; neither did it ever consent to Evil or
Wickedness in any: For it is said expresly, that _it makes all Things
manifest that are reproveable_, Ephes. v. 13. and so is a faithful
Witness for God against every Unrighteousness _in Man_. [Sidenote:
_Conscience defined._] Now _Conscience_, to define it truly, comes from
[_Conscire_,] and _is that Knowledge which ariseth in Man’s Heart,
from what agreeth, contradicteth, or is contrary to any Thing believed
by him, whereby he becomes conscious to himself that he transgresseth
by doing that which he is persuaded he ought not to do_. So that the
Mind being once blinded or defiled with a wrong Belief, there ariseth
a Conscience from that Belief, which troubles him when he goes against
it. [Sidenote: _Example of a_ Turk.] As for Example: A _Turk_ who hath
possessed himself with a false Belief that it is unlawful for him to
drink Wine, if he do it, his Conscience smites him for it; but though
he keep many Concubines, his Conscience troubles him not, because his
Judgment is already defiled with a false Opinion that it is lawful
for him to do the one, and unlawful to do the other. Whereas if the
Light of Christ in him were minded, it would reprove him, not only for
committing Fornication, but also, as he became obedient thereunto,
inform him that _Mahomet_ was an _Impostor_; as well as _Socrates_ was
informed by it, in his Day, of the Falsity of the Heathens Gods.

[Sidenote: _Example of a_ Papist.] So if a _Papist_ eat Flesh in
_Lent_, or be not diligent enough in Adoration of Saints and Images,
or if he should contemn Images, his Conscience would smite him for it,
because his Judgment is already blinded with a false Belief concerning
these Things: Whereas the Light of Christ never consented to any of
those Abominations. Thus then Man’s natural Conscience is sufficiently
distinguished from it; for Conscience followeth the Judgment, doth not
inform it; but this Light, as it is received, removes the Blindness of
the Judgment, opens the Understanding, and rectifies both the Judgment
and Conscience. So we confess also, that Conscience is an excellent
Thing, where it is rightly informed and enlightened: Wherefore some of
us have fitly compared it to the Lanthorn, and the Light of Christ to a
Candle: [Sidenote: _The natural _Conscience_ compared to a _Lanthorn_,
and the Light of Christ is a_ Candle.] A Lanthorn is useful, when
a clear Candle burns and shines in it; but otherwise of no Use. To
the Light of Christ then in the Conscience, and not to Man’s natural
Conscience, it is that we continually commend Men; this, not that, is
it which we preach up, and direct People to, as to a most certain Guide
unto Life eternal.

_Lastly_, This _Light_, _Seed_, &c. appears to be no Power or natural
Faculty of Man’s Mind; because a Man that is in his Health can, when
he pleases, stir up, move, and exercise the Faculties of his Soul; he
is absolute Master of them; and except there be some natural Cause or
Impediment in the Way, he can use them at his Pleasure: But this _Light
and Seed of God in Man_ he cannot move and stir up when he pleaseth;
but it moves, blows, and strives with Man, as the Lord seeth meet.
[Sidenote: _The Waiting upon the Movings of the Light and Grace._] For
though there be a Possibility of Salvation to every Man during the Day
of his Visitation, yet cannot a Man, at any Time when he pleaseth,
or hath some Sense of his _Misery_, stir up that Light and Grace, so
as to procure to himself Tenderness of Heart; but he must wait for
it: Which comes upon all at certain Times and Seasons, wherein it
works powerfully upon the Soul, mightily tenders it, and breaks it;
at which Time, if Man resist it not, but closes with it, he comes to
know Salvation by it. Even as the Lake of _Bethesda_ did not cure all
those that washed in it, but such only as washed first after the Angel
had moved upon the Waters; so God moves in Love to Mankind, in this
Seed in his Heart, at some singular Times, setting his Sins in Order
before him, and seriously inviting him to Repentance, offering to him
Remission of Sins and Salvation; which if Man accept of, he may be
saved. Now there is no Man alive, and I am confident there shall be
none to whom this Paper shall come, who, if they will deal faithfully
and honestly with their own Hearts, will not be forced to acknowledge
that they have been sensible of this in some Measure, less or more;
which is a Thing that Man cannot bring upon himself with all his Pains
and Industry. This then, O Man and Woman! is the Day of God’s gracious
Visitation to thy Soul, which if thou resist not, thou shalt be happy
for ever. This is the Day of the Lord, which, as Christ saith, [68]_is
like the Lightning, which shineth from the East unto the West_; and the
[69]_Wind _or_ Spirit, which blows upon the Heart, and no Man knows
whither it goes, nor whence it comes_.

[68] Mat. 24. 27.

[69] John 3. 8.

§. XVII. [Sidenote: Quest. 7.] And lastly, This leads me to speak
concerning the Manner _of this Seed_ or _Light’s Operation in the
Hearts of all Men_, which will shew yet more manifestly how widely
we differ from all those that exalt a natural Power or Light in Man;
and how our Principle leads above all others to attribute our whole
Salvation to the mere Power, Spirit, and Grace of God.

To them then that ask us after this Manner, _How do ye offer from
the_ Pelagians _and_ Arminians? _For if two Men have equal sufficient
Light and Grace, and the one be saved by it, and the other not; is it
not because the one improves it, the other not? Is not then the Will
of Man the Cause of the one’s Salvation beyond the other_? [Sidenote:
_The Light’s Operations in Order to Salvation._] I say, to such we
thus answer: That as the Grace and Light in all is sufficient to save
all, and of its own Nature would save all; so it strives and wrestles
with all in order to save them; he that resists its Striving, is the
Cause of his own Condemnation; he that resists it not, it becomes his
Salvation: So that in him that is saved, the working is of the _Grace_,
and not of the _Man_; and it is a Passiveness rather than an Act;
though afterwards, as Man is wrought upon, there is a Will raised in
him, by which he comes to be a Co-worker with the Grace: For according
to that of _Augustine_, _He that made us without us, will not save
us without us_. So that the first Step is not by Man’s working, but
by his not contrary working. And we believe, that at these singular
Seasons of every Man’s Visitation above-mentioned, as Man is wholly
unable of himself to work with the Grace, neither can he move one Step
out of the natural Condition, until the Grace lay hold upon him; so
it is possible for him to be passive, and not to resist it, as it is
possible for him to resist it. So we say, the Grace of God works in
and upon Man’s Nature; which, though of itself wholly corrupted and
defiled, and prone to Evil, yet is capable to be wrought upon by the
Grace of God; even as Iron, though an hard and cold Metal of itself,
may be warmed and softened by the Heat of the Fire, and Wax melted
by the Sun. And as Iron or Wax, when removed from the Fire or Sun,
returneth to its former Condition of Coldness and Hardness; so Man’s
Heart, as it resists or retires from the Grace of God, returns to its
former Condition again. I have often had the Manner of God’s working,
in order to Salvation towards all Men, illustrated to my Mind by one
or two clear Examples, which I shall here add for the Information of

[Sidenote: _The Example of a Diseased Man and the Physician._] The
first is, _Of a Man heavily diseased_; to whom I compare Man in
his fallen and natural Condition. I suppose God, who is the great
Physician, not only to give this Man Physick, after he hath used all
the Industry he can for his own Health, by any Skill or Knowledge of
his own; as those that say, _If a Man improve his Reason or natural
Faculties, God will superadd Grace_; _or, _as others say,_ That he
cometh and maketh Offer of a Remedy to this Man outwardly, leaving it
to the Liberty of Man’s Will either to receive it or reject it_. But
He, even the Lord, this great Physician, cometh, and poureth the Remedy
into his Mouth, and as it were layeth him in his Bed; so that if the
sick Man be but passive, it will necessarily work the Effect: But if he
be stubborn and untoward, and will needs rise up and go forth into the
Cold, or eat such Fruits as are hurtful to him, while the _Medicine_
should operate; then, though of its Nature it tendeth to cure him, yet
it will prove destructive to him, because of those Obstructions which
it meeteth with. Now as the Man that should thus undo himself would
certainly be the Cause of his own Death; so who will say, that, if
cured, he owes not his Health wholly to the Physician, and not to any
Deed of his own; seeing his Part was not any Action, but a Passiveness?

[Sidenote: _The Example of _Men_ lying stupified in a dark _Pit_, and
their _Deliverer.] The second Example is, _Of divers Men lying in a
dark Pit together, where all their Senses are so stupified, that they
are scarce sensible of their own Misery_. To this I compare Man in his
natural, corrupt, fallen Condition. I suppose not that any of these
Men, wrestling to deliver themselves, do thereby stir up or engage one
able to deliver them to give them his Help, saying within himself, _I
see one of these Men willing to be delivered, and doing what in him
lies, therefore he deserves to be assisted_; as say the _Socinians_,
_Pelagians_, and _Semi-Pelagians_. Neither do I suppose that this
Deliverer comes to the Top of the Pit, and puts down a Ladder, desiring
them that will to come up; and so puts them upon using their own
Strength and Will to come up; as do the _Jesuits_ and _Arminians_:
Yet, as they say, such are not delivered without the Grace; seeing the
Grace is that Ladder by which they were delivered. But I suppose that
the Deliverer comes at certain Times, and fully discovers and informs
them of the great Misery and Hazard they are in, if they continue in
that noisome and pestiferous Place; yea, forces them to a certain Sense
of their Misery (for the wickedest Men at Times are made sensible of
their Misery by God’s Visitation) and not only so, but lays Hold upon
them, and gives them a Pull, in order to lift them out of their Misery;
which if they resist not will save them; only they may resist it. This
being applied as the former, doth the same Way illustrate the Matter.
Neither is the Grace of God frustrated, though the Effect of it be
divers, according to its Object, being the _Ministration of Mercy and
Love_ in those that reject it not, but receive it, _John_ i. 12. but
the _Ministration of Wrath and Condemnation_ in those that do reject
it, _John_ iii. 19. [Sidenote: _A _Simile_ of the Sun’s melting and
hardening Power._] even as the Sun, by one Act or Operation, melteth
and softeneth the Wax, and hardeneth the Clay. The Nature of the Sun is
to cherish the Creation, and therefore the Living are refreshed by it,
and the Flowers send forth a good Savour, as it shines upon them, and
the Fruits of the Trees are ripened; yet cast forth a dead Carcase, a
Thing without Life, and the same Reflection of the Sun will cause it to
stink, and putrify it; yet is not the Sun said thereby to be frustrated
of its proper Effect. So every Man during the Day of his Visitation
is shined upon by the Sun of Righteousness, and capable of being
influenced by it, so as to send forth good Fruit, and a good Savour,
and to be melted by it; but when he hath sinned out his Day, then the
same Sun hardeneth him, as it doth the Clay, and makes his Wickedness
more to appear and putrify, and send forth an evil Savour.

§. XVIII. [Sidenote: _All have Grace sufficient for Salvation given
them of God._] _Lastly_, As we truly affirm that God willeth no Man to
perish, and therefore hath given to all Grace sufficient for Salvation;
so we do not deny, but that in a special Manner he worketh in some,
in whom Grace so prevaileth, that they necessarily obtain Salvation;
neither doth God suffer them to resist. For it were absurd to say,
that God had not far otherwise extended himself towards the Virgin
_Mary_ and the Apostle _Paul_, than towards many others: Neither can we
affirm, that God equally loved the beloved Disciple _John_ and _Judas_
the Traitor; yet so far, nevertheless, as none wanted such a Measure of
Grace by which they might have been saved, all are justly inexcusable.
And also God working in those to whom this Prevalency of Grace is
given, doth so hide himself, to shut out all Security and Presumption,
that such may be humbled, and the free Grace of God magnified, and
all reputed to be of the free Gift; and nothing from the Strength of
Self. Those also who perish, when they remember those Times of God’s
Visitation towards them, wherein he wrestled with them by his _Light_
and _Spirit_, are forced to confess, that there was a Time wherein the
Door of Mercy was open unto them, and that they are justly condemned,
because they rejected their own Salvation.

Thus both the Mercy and Justice of God are established, and the Will
and Strength of Man are brought down and rejected; his Condemnation
is made to be of himself, and his Salvation only to depend upon God.
Also, by these Positions, two great Objections, which often are brought
against this Doctrine, are well solved.

[Sidenote: Object.] The first is deduced from those Places of
Scripture, wherein God seems precisely to have decreed and
predestinated some to Salvation; and for that End, to have ordained
certain Means, which fall not out to others; as in the Calling of
_Abraham_, _David_, and others, and in the Conversion of _Paul_; for
these being numbered among such to whom this Prevalency is given, the
Objection is easily loosed.

[Sidenote: _Predestination to Salvation, and Pre-ordination to
Destruction_, answered.] The second is drawn from those Places, wherein
God seems to have ordained some wicked Persons to Destruction; and
therefore to have obdured their Hearts to force them unto great Sins,
and to have raised them up, that he might shew in them his Power, who,
if they be numbered amongst those Men whose Day of Visitation is passed
over, that Objection is also solved; as will more evidently appear to
any One that will make a particular Application of those Things, which
I at this Time, for Brevity’s Sake, thought meet to pass over.

§. XIX. Having thus clearly and evidently stated the Question, and
opened our Mind and Judgment in this Matter, as divers Objections are
hereby prevented, so will it make our Proof both the easier and the

[Sidenote: Prop. I.] [Sidenote: _Proved._] The first Thing to be proved
is, _That God hath given to every Man a Day or Time of Visitation,
wherein it is possible for him to be saved_. If we can prove that there
is a Day and Time given, in which those might have been saved that
actually perish, the Matter is done: For none deny but those that are
saved have a Day of Visitation. [Sidenote: Proof I.] This then appears
by the Regrets and Complaints which the Spirit of God throughout the
whole Scriptures makes, even to those that did perish; [Sidenote:
_Those that perish, had a Day of Mercy offered them._] sharply
reproving them, for that they did not accept of, nor close with God’s
Visitation and Offer of Mercy to them. Thus the Lord expresses himself
then first of all to _Cain_, Gen. iv. 6, 7. [Sidenote: _Instances._ 1.
Cain.] _And the Lord said unto Cain, Why art thou wroth? And why is
thy Countenance fallen? If thou dost well, shalt thou not be accepted?
If thou dost not well, Sin lieth at the Door._ This was said to _Cain_
before he slew his Brother _Abel_, when the evil Seed began to tempt
him, and work in his Heart; we see how God gave Warning to _Cain_ in
Season, and in the Day of his Visitation towards him, Acceptance and
Remission if he did well: For this Interrogation, _Shalt thou not be
accepted?_ imports an Affirmative, _Thou shalt be accepted, if thou
dost well_. So that if we may trust God Almighty, the Fountain of all
Truth and Equity, it was possible in a Day, even for _Cain_ to be
accepted. Neither could God have proposed the doing of _Good_ as a
Condition, if he had not given _Cain_ sufficient Strength, whereby he
was capable to do _Good_. This the Lord himself also shews, even that
he gave a Day of Visitation to the Old World, [Sidenote: _The_ Old
World.] _Gen._ vi. 3. _And the Lord said, My Spirit shall not always
strive in Man_; for so it ought to be translated. This manifestly
implies, that his Spirit did strive with Man, and doth strive with
him for a Season, which Season expiring, God ceaseth to strive with
him, in order to save him: For the Spirit of God cannot be said to
strive with Man after the Day of his Visitation is expired; seeing it
naturally, and without any Resistance, works its Effect then, to wit,
continually to judge and condemn him. From this _Day of Visitation_,
that God hath given to every One, is it, that he is said to _wait to
be gracious_, Isa. xxx. 18. [Sidenote: _God is Long-suffering, and
long waiting to be gracious unto all_.--] And to be _Long-suffering_,
Exod. xxxiv. 6. Numb. xiv. 18. Psal. lxxxvi. 15. Jer. xv. 15. Here the
Prophet _Jeremy_, in his Prayer, lays hold upon the _Long-suffering of
God_; and in his expostulating with God, he shuts out the Objection of
our Adversaries in the 18th Verse; _Why is my Pain perpetual, and my
Wound incurable, which refuseth to be healed? Wilt thou altogether be
unto me as a Liar, and as Waters that fail?_ Whereas, according to our
Adversaries Opinion, the Pain of the most Part of Men is perpetual, and
their Wound altogether incurable; yea, the Offer of the Gospel, and
of Salvation unto them, is as a Lie, and as Waters that fail, being
never intended to be of any Effect unto them. The Apostle _Peter_
says expresly, that this _Long-suffering of God waited in the Days
of _Noah_ for those of the Old World_, 1 Pet. iii. 20. which, being
compared with that of _Gen._ vi. 3. before-mentioned, doth sufficiently
hold forth our Proposition. And that none may object that this
_Long-suffering_ or _Striving of the Lord_ was not in order to save
them, the same Apostle saith expresly, 2 _Pet._ iii. 15. [Sidenote:
_In order to save them._] _That the Long-suffering of God is to be
accounted Salvation_; and with this _Long-suffering_, a little before
in the 9th Verse, he couples, _That God is not willing that any should
perish_. Where, taking him to be his own Interpreter (as he is most
fit) he holdeth forth, That those to whom the Lord is _Long-suffering_,
(which he declareth he was to the Wicked of the Old World, and is now
to all, _not willing that any should perish_) they are _to account
this Long-suffering of God to them Salvation_. Now, how or in what
respect can they account it _Salvation_, if there be not so much as a
_Possibility_ of _Salvation_ conveyed to them therein? For it were not
_Salvation_ to them, if they could not be saved by it. In this Matter
_Peter_ further refers to the Writings of _Paul_, holding forth this to
have been the universal Doctrine. Where it is observable what he adds
upon this Occasion, [Sidenote: _Some Things in _Paul_’s Epistles hard
to be understood._] how _there are some Things in _Paul_’s Epistles
hard to be understood, which the Unstable and Unlearned wrest to
their own Destruction_; insinuating plainly this of those Expressions
in _Paul_’s Epistles, as _Rom._ ix. _&c._ which some, _unlearned_
in spiritual Things, did make to contradict the Truth of _God’s
Long-suffering towards all_, in which he willeth not any of them should
perish, and in which they all may be saved. Would to God many had taken
more Heed than they have done to this Advertisement! That Place of the
Apostle _Paul_, which _Peter_ seems here most particularly to hint at,
doth much contribute also to clear the Matter, _Rom._ ii. 4. _Despisest
thou the Riches of his Goodness, and Forbearance, and Long-suffering,
not knowing that the Goodness of God leadeth thee to Repentance?_
_Paul_ speaketh here to the Unregenerate, and to the Wicked, who (in
the following _Verse_ he saith) _Treasure up Wrath unto the Day of
Wrath_; and to such he commends the Riches of the Forbearance and
Long-suffering of God; shewing that the Tendency of God’s Goodness
leadeth to Repentance. How could it necessarily tend to _lead them to
Repentance_, how could it be called _Riches_ or _Goodness_ to them, if
there were not a Time wherein they might repent by it, and come to be
Sharers of the Riches exhibited in it? From all which I thus argue.

[Sidenote: Arg.] [Sidenote: _God’s Spirit strives in the Wicked._]
If God plead with the Wicked, from the Possibility of their being
accepted; if God’s Spirit strive in them for a Season, in order to
save them, who afterwards perish; if he wait to be gracious unto them;
if he be Long-suffering towards them; and if this Long-suffering be
Salvation to them while it endureth, during which Time God willeth
them not to perish, but exhibiteth to them the Riches of his Goodness
and Forbearance to lead them to Repentance; then there is a Day of
Visitation wherein such might have been, or some such now may be saved,
who have perished; and may perish, if they repent not:

But the first is true: Therefore also the last.

§. XX. [Sidenote: _Proof 2._] _Secondly_, This appeareth from the
Prophet _Isaiah_ v. 4. [Sidenote: _The Vineyard planted brought forth
wild Grapes._] _What could I have done more to my Vineyard?_ For in
Ver. 2. he saith; _He had fenced it, and gathered out the Stones
thereof, and planted it with the choicest Vine: And yet _(saith he)_
when I looked it should have brought forth Grapes, it brought forth
wild Grapes_. Wherefore he calleth the Inhabitants of _Jerusalem_, and
Men of _Judah_, to judge betwixt him and his Vineyard, saying; _What
could I have done more to my Vineyard, than I have done in it? and
yet _(as is said)_ it brought forth wild Grapes_: Which was applied
to many in _Israel_, who refused God’s Mercy. The same Example is
used by Christ, _Matth._ xxi. 33. _Mark_ xii. 1. _Luke_ xx. 9. where
_Jesus_ shews, how to some _a Vineyard was planted_, and all Things
given necessary for them, to get them Fruit to pay or restore to their
Master; and how the Master many Times waited to be merciful to them, in
sending Servants after Servants, and passing by many Offences, before
he determined to destroy and cast them out. _First_ then, this cannot
be understood of the Saints, or of such as repent and are saved; for it
is said expresly, _He will destroy them_. Neither would the Parable any
ways have answered the End for which it is alleged, if these Men had
not been in a Capacity to have done Good; yea, such was their Capacity,
that Christ saith in the Prophet, _What could have I done more?_ So
that it is more than manifest, that by this Parable, repeated in three
sundry _Evangelists_, Christ holds forth his Long-suffering towards
Men, and their Wickedness, to whom Means of Salvation being afforded,
do nevertheless resist, to their own Condemnation. To these also are
parallel these Scriptures, _Prov._ i. 24, 25, 26. _Jer._ xviii. 9, 10.
_Matth._ xviii. 32, 33, 34. _Acts_ xiii. 46.

[Sidenote: _Proof 3._] _Lastly_, That there is a Day of Visitation
given to the Wicked, wherein they might have been saved, and which
being expired, they are shut out from Salvation, [Sidenote: _Christ’s
Lamentation over_ Jerusalem.] appears evidently by Christ’s Lamentation
over _Jerusalem_, expressed in three sundry Places, _Matth._ xxiii.
37. _Luke_ xiii. 34. and xix. 41, 42. _And when he was come near, he
beheld the City, and wept over it, saying; If thou hadst known, even
thou, at least in this thy Day, the Things that belong to thy Peace;
but now they are hid from thine Eyes!_ Than which nothing can be said
more evident to prove our Doctrine. For, _First_, he insinuates that
there was a Day wherein the Inhabitants of _Jerusalem_ might have
known those Things that belonged to their Peace. _Secondly_, That
during that Day he was willing to have gathered them, even as an _Hen
gathereth her Chickens_. A familiar Example, yet very significative in
this Case; which shews that the Offer of Salvation made unto them was
not in vain on his Part, but as really, and with as great Chearfulness
and Willingness, as an _Hen gathereth her Chickens_. Such as is the
Love and Care of the Hen toward her Brood, such is the Care of Christ
to gather lost Men and Women, to redeem them out of their corrupt and
degenerate State. _Thirdly_, That because they refused, the Things
belonging to their _Peace were hid from their Eyes_. Why were they hid?
Because ye would not suffer me to _gather you_; ye would not see those
Things that were _good for you_, in the Season of God’s Love towards
you; and therefore _now_, that Day being expired, _ye cannot see them_:
And, for a farther judgment, God suffers you to be hardened in Unbelief.

[Sidenote: _God hardens, when._] So it is, after real Offers of Mercy
and Salvation rejected, that Men’s Hearts are hardened, and not before.
Thus that Saying is verified, _To him that hath, shall be given; and
from him that hath not, shall be taken away even that which he hath._
This may seem a Riddle, yet it is according to this Doctrine easily
solved. He hath not, because he hath lost the Season of using it,
and so to him it is now as nothing; for Christ uses this Expression,
_Matth._ xxv. 26. [Sidenote: _The one Talent was sufficient._] upon the
Occasion of the taking the _one Talent_ from the _slothful Servant_,
and giving it to him that was diligent; which _Talent_ was no ways
insufficient of itself, but of the same Nature with those given to the
others; and therefore the Lord had Reason to exact the Profit of it
proportionably, as well as from the rest: So, I say, it is after the
rejecting of the Day of Visitation, that the Judgment of Obduration is
inflicted upon Men and Women, as Christ pronounceth it upon the _Jews_
out of _Isa._ vi. 9. which all the four _Evangelists_ make Mention of,
_Matth._ xiii. 14. _Mark_ iv. 12. _Luke_ viii. 10. _John_ xii. 40. and
last of all the Apostle _Paul_, after he had made Offer of the Gospel
of Salvation to the _Jews_ at _Rome_, pronounceth the same, _Acts_
xxviii. 26. after that some believed not; _Well spake the Holy Ghost,
by _Isaiah_ the Prophet, unto our Fathers, saying, Go unto this People,
and say, Hearing ye shall hear, and shall not understand; and seeing
ye shall see, and shall not perceive. For the Heart of this People is
waxed gross, and their Ears are dull of hearing, and their Eyes have
they closed; lest they should see with their Eyes, and hear with their
Ears, and understand with their Hearts, and should be converted, and
I should heal them._ So it appears, that God would have them to see,
but they closed their Eyes; and therefore they are justly hardened.
[Sidenote: Cyril. Alex.] Of this Matter _Cyrillus Alexandrinus_ upon
_John_, Lib. 6. Cap. 21. speaks well, answering to this Objection. _But
some may say, If Christ be come into the World, that those that see may
be blinded, their Blindness is not imputed unto them; but it rather
seems that Christ is the Cause of their Blindness, who saith_, He is
come into the World, that those that see may be blinded. _But, _saith
he,_ they speak not rationally, who object these Things unto God, and
are not afraid to call him the Author of Evil. For, as the sensible Sun
is carried upon our Horizon, that it may communicate the Gift of its
Clearness unto all, and make its Light shine upon all_; [Sidenote:
_The Cause of Man’s remaining in Darkness, the closing of his Eyes._]
_yet if any one close his Eye-lids, or willingly turn himself from the
Sun, refusing the Benefit of its Light, he wants its Illumination, and
remains in Darkness, not through the Defect of the Sun, but through
his own Fault. So that the true Sun, who came to enlighten those that
sat in Darkness, and in the Region of the Shadow of Death, visited
the Earth for this Cause, that he might communicate unto all the Gift
of Knowledge and Grace, and illuminate the inward Eyes of all by a
spiritual Splendor: But many reject the Gift of this heavenly Light
freely given to them, and have closed the Eyes of their Minds, lest so
excellent an Illumination or Irradiation of the eternal Light should
shine unto them. It is not then through Defect of the true Sun that
they are blinded, but only through their own Iniquity and Hardness_;
for, _as the wise Man saith, Wisdom_ ii. Their Wickedness hath blinded

From all which I thus argue:

[Sidenote: _The obstinate _Jews_ had a Day._] If there was a Day
wherein the obstinate _Jews_ might have known the Things that _belonged
to their Peace_, which, because they rejected it, _was hid from their
Eyes_; if there was a Time wherein Christ would have gathered them,
who, because they refused, could not be gathered; then such as might
have been saved do actually perish, that slighted the Day of God’s
Visitation towards them, wherein they might have been converted and

But the first is true: Therefore also the last.

§. XXI. [Sidenote: Prop. II.] [Sidenote: _Proved._] _Secondly_,
That which comes in the second Place to be proved is, _That whereby
God offers to work this Salvation during the Day of every Man’s
Visitation_; and that is, _That he hath given to every Man a Measure
of saving, sufficient, and supernatural Light and Grace_. This I shall
do, by God’s Assistance, by some plain and clear Testimonies of the

[Sidenote: _Proof 1._] _First_, From that of _John_ i. 9. _That was
the true Light, which lighteth every Man that cometh into the World_.
[Sidenote: _The Light enlightening every Man_, &c.--] This Place doth
so clearly favour us, that by some it is called the _Quakers Text_; for
it doth evidently demonstrate our Assertion; so that it scarce needs
either Consequence or Deduction, seeing itself is a Consequence of two
Propositions asserted in the former Verses, from which it followeth
as a Conclusion in the very Terms of our Faith. The first of these
Propositions is, _The Life that is in him is the Light of Men_: The
second, _The Light shineth in the Darkness_; And from these two he
infers, and _He is the true Light, which lighteth every Man that cometh
into the World_.

[Sidenote: Obs. 1.] From whence I do in short observe, That this divine
Apostle calls _Christ the Light of Men_, and giveth us this as one
of the chief Properties, at least considerably and especially to be
observed by us; seeing hereby, as he is the _Light_, and as we walk
with him in that _Light_ which he communicates to us, we come to have
Fellowship and Communion with him; as the same Apostle saith elsewhere,
1 _John_ i. 7. _Secondly_, That _this Light shineth in Darkness, though
the Darkness comprehend it not_. [Sidenote:--_Not to a certain Number
of Men, but every Man._] _Thirdly_, That _this true Light enlighteneth
every Man that cometh into the World_. Where the Apostle, being
directed by God’s Spirit, hath carefully avoided their Captiousness,
that would have restricted this to any certain Number: Where every
one is, there is none excluded. Next, should they be so obstinate, as
sometimes they are, as to say that this [_every Man_] is only every
one of the Elect; these Words following, _every Man that cometh into
the World_, would obviate that Objection. So that it is plain there
comes no Man into the World, whom Christ hath not _enlightened_ in some
Measure, and in whose dark Heart this _Light_ doth not shine; though
the _Darkness comprehend it not_, yet it shineth there; and the Nature
thereof is to dispel the Darkness where Men shut not their Eyes upon
it. [Sidenote: _The Light dispelling Darkness begets Faith._] Now for
what End this _Light_ is given, is expressed, Ver. 7. where _John_ is
said to come for a _Witness, to bear Witness to the Light, that all
Men through it might believe_; to wit, through the _Light_, [Greek:
di autou: δι αυτου], which doth very well agree with [Greek: phôtos:
φωτος], as being the nearest Antecedent, though most Translators have
(to make it suit with their own Doctrine) made it relate to _John_,
as if all Men were to believe through _John_. For which, as there is
nothing directly in the Text, so it is contrary to the very Strain
of the Context. For, seeing Christ hath _lighted every Man_ with
this _Light_, Is it not that they may come to believe through it?
All could not believe through _John_, because all Men could not know
of _John_’s Testimony; whereas every Man being lighted by this, may
come therethrough to believe. _John_ shined not in _Darkness_; but
this _Light_ shineth in the _Darkness_, that having dispelled the
_Darkness_, it may produce and beget Faith. And, _Lastly_, We must
believe through that, and become Believers through that, by walking
in which, Fellowship with God is known and enjoyed; but, as hath
been above-observed, it is by walking in this _Light_ that we have
this Communion and Fellowship; not by walking in _John_, which were
Nonsense. So that this Relative [Greek: di autou: δι αυτου], must needs
be referred to the _Light_, whereof _John_ bears Witness, that through
that _Light_, wherewith Christ hath _lighted every Man_, all Men might
come to believe. Seeing then this _Light_ is the _Light_ of Jesus
Christ, and the _Light_ through which Men come to believe, I think it
needs not to be doubted, but that it is a supernatural, saving, and
sufficient _Light_. [Sidenote: _The Light is supernatural, saving, and
sufficient._] If it were not supernatural, it could not be properly
called the _Light_ of Jesus; for though all Things be his, and of him,
and from him; yet those Things which are common and peculiar to our
Nature, as being a Part of it, we are not said in so special a Manner
to have from Christ. Moreover, the Evangelist is holding out to us here
the Office of Christ as Mediator, and the Benefits which from him as
such do redound unto us.

[Sidenote: Obser. 2.] _Secondly_, It cannot be any of the natural Gifts
or Faculties of our Soul, whereby we are said here to be enlightened,
because this Light is said to _shine in the Darkness_, and cannot be
comprehended by it. [Sidenote: _The Darkness is Man’s natural State and
Condition._] Now this Darkness is no other but Man’s natural Condition
and State; in which natural State he can easily comprehend, and doth
comprehend, those Things that are peculiar and common to him as such.
That Man in his natural Condition is called _Darkness_, see _Eph._ v.
8. _For ye were sometimes Darkness, but now are ye Light in the Lord._
And in other Places, as _Acts_ xxvi. 18. _Col._ i. 3. 1 _Thess._ v. 5.
where the Condition of Man in his natural State, is termed _Darkness_:
Therefore, I say, this _Light_ cannot be any natural Property or
Faculty of Man’s Soul, but a supernatural Gift and Grace of Christ.

[Sidenote: Obser. 3.] _Thirdly_, It is sufficient and saving.

[Sidenote: Arg. 1.] That which is given, _That all Men through it
may believe_, must needs be saving and sufficient: That, by walking
in which, Fellowship with the Saints and the Blood of Christ, _Which
cleanseth from all Sin_, is possessed, must be sufficient:

But such is the LIGHT, 1 _John_ i. 7.

Therefore, _&c._


[Sidenote: Arg. 2.] That which we are commanded to believe in, _That
we may become the Children of the Light_, must be a supernatural,
sufficient and saving Principle:

But we are commanded to _believe in this Light_:

Therefore, _&c._

The _Proposition_ cannot be denied. The _Assumption_ is Christ’s own
Words, _John_ xii. 36. _While ye have the Light, believe in the Light,
that ye may be the Children of the Light._

[Sidenote: Object.] To this they object, _That by _[Light]_ here is
understood Christ’s outward Person, in whom he would have them believe._

[Sidenote: _Answ._] That they ought to have believed in Christ, that
is, that he was the MESSIAH that was to come, is not denied; [Sidenote:
_Whether Christ’s outward Person was the Light?_] but how they evince
that Christ intended _that_ here, I see not: Nay, the Place itself
shews the Contrary, by these Words, _While ye have the Light_; and by
the Verse going before, _Walk while ye have the Light, lest Darkness
come upon you_: Which Words import, That when that Light in which
they were to believe was removed, then they should lose the Capacity
or Season of believing. Now this could not be understood of Christ’s
Person, else the _Jews_ might have believed in him; and many did
savingly believe in him, as all Christians do at this Day, when the
Person, to wit, his bodily Presence, or outward Man, is far removed
from them. [Sidenote: _The Light of Christ is not Christ’s outward Man
or Person._] So that this Light in which they were commanded to believe
must be that inward spiritual Light that shines in their Hearts for
a Season, even during the Day of Man’s Visitation; which, while it
continueth to call, invite, and exhort, Men are said to have it, and
may believe in it; but when Men refuse to believe in it, and reject
it, then it ceaseth to be a Light to shew them the Way; but leaves the
Sense of their Unfaithfulness as a Sting in their Conscience, which is
a Terror and Darkness unto them, and upon them, in which they cannot
know where to go, neither can work any Ways profitably in order to
their Salvation. And therefore to such rebellious Ones the Day of the
Lord is said to be _Darkness_, and not _Light_, Amos v. 18.

From whence it appears, that though many receive not the Light, as many
comprehend it not, nevertheless this saving Light shines in all, that
it may save them. [Sidenote: Cyrillus Alexandrinus _upon _John_ Lib. 1.
Chap. II._] Concerning which also _Cyrillus Alexandrinus_ saith well,
and defends our Principle: “With great Diligence and Watchfulness,”
saith he, “doth the Apostle _John_ endeavour to anticipate and prevent
the vain Thoughts of Men: For there is here a wonderful Method of
sublime Things, and overturning of Objections. He had just now called
the Son the _true Light_, by whom he affirmed, That every Man coming
into the World was enlightened; yea, that he was in the World, and
the World was made by him. One may then object, If the Word of God be
the Light, and if this Light enlighten the Hearts of Men, and suggest
unto Men Piety and the Understanding of Things; if he was always in
the World, and was the Creator or Builder of the World, why was he so
long unknown unto the World? It seems rather to follow because he was
unknown to the World, therefore the World was not enlightened by him,
nor he totally Light. Lest any should so object, he divinely infers
[and the World knew him not.] [Sidenote: _The Sun enlightens: But Man
through Negligence buries Illumination._] Let not the World,” saith he,
“accuse the Word of God, and his eternal Light, but its own Weakness;
for the Sun enlightens, but the Creature rejects the Grace that is
given unto it, and abuseth the Sharpness of Understanding granted
it, by which it might have naturally known God; and, as a Prodigal,
hath turned its Sight to the Creatures, neglecting to go forward, and
through Laziness and Negligence buried the Illumination, and despised
this Grace. Which that the Disciple of _Paul_ might not do, he was
commanded to watch; therefore it is to be imputed to their Wickedness,
who are illuminated, and not unto the Light. For as albeit the Sun
riseth upon all, yet he that is blind receiveth no Benefit thereby;
none thence can justly accuse the Brightness of the Sun, but will
ascribe the Cause of not seeing to the Blindness: So I judge it is
to be understood of the only begotten Son of God; for he is the true
Light, and sendeth forth his Brightness upon all; but the God of this
World, as _Paul_ saith, hath blinded the Minds of those that believe
not, 2 _Cor._ iv. 4. that the Light of the Gospel shine not unto them.
We say then, that Darkness is come upon Men, not because they are
altogether deprived of Light, for Nature retaineth still the Strength
of Understanding divinely given it, but because Man is dulled by an
evil Habit, and become worse, and hath made the Measure of Grace, in
some respect, to languish. When therefore the Like befalls Man, the
_Psalmist_ justly prays, crying, _Open mine Eyes, that I may behold
the wonderful Things of thy Law_. For the Law was given that this
Light might be kindled in us, the Blearedness of the Eyes of our Minds
being wiped away, and the Blindness being removed which detained us
in our former Ignorance. By these Words then, the World is accused as
ungrateful and unsensible, not knowing its Author, nor bringing forth
the good Fruit of the _Illumination_; that it may now seem to be said
truly of all, which was of old said by the Prophet of the _Jews_, I
expected that it should have brought forth Grapes, but it brought forth
wild Grapes. For the good Fruit of the _Illumination_ was the Knowledge
of the Only Begotten, as a Cluster hanging from a fruitful Branch,

From which it appears _Cyrillus_ believed, That a _saving Illumination_
was given unto all. [Sidenote: _Grace no natural Gift._] For as to what
he speaks of Nature, he understands it not of the common Nature of Man
by itself, but of that Nature which hath the Strength of Understanding
_divinely_ given it: For he understands this _universal Illumination_
to be of the same Kind with that _Grace_ of which _Paul_ makes Mention
to _Timothy_, saying, _Neglect not the Grace that is in thee._ Now it
is not to be believed, that _Cyrillus_ was so ignorant as to judge that
Grace to have been some natural Gift.

§. XXII. [Sidenote: Proof II.] That this saving Light and Seed, or a
Measure of it, is given to all, Christ tells us expresly in the Parable
of the Sower, _Mat._ xiii. from Ver. 18. _Mark_ iv. and _Luke_ viii.
11. he saith, [Sidenote: _The Seed of the Kingdom is sown in several
Sorts of Ground, without Distinction._] That this _Seed_, sown in
those several Sorts of Ground is the _Word of the Kingdom_, which the
Apostle calls the _Word of Faith_, Rom. x. 8. James i. 21.[Greek: ho
Logos emphytos: ὁ Λογος εμφυτος], _the implanted ingrafted Word, which
is able to save the Soul_; the Words themselves declare that it is
that which is _saving_ in the Nature of it, for in the good Ground it
fructified abundantly.

Let us then observe, That this Seed of the Kingdom, this saving,
supernatural, and sufficient _Word_, was really sown in the stony,
thorny Ground, and by the Way-side, where it did not profit, but
became useless as to these Grounds: It was, I say, the same _Seed_
that was sown in the good Ground. It is then the Fear of Persecution
and Deceitfulness of Riches, as Christ himself interpreteth the
Parable, which hindereth this Seed to grow in the Hearts of many: Not
but that in its own Nature it is sufficient, being the same with that
which groweth up and prospereth in the Hearts of those who receive
it. So that, though all are not saved by it, yet there is a Seed of
Salvation planted and sown in the Hearts of _all_ by God, which would
grow up and redeem the Soul, if it were not choked and hindered.
Concerning this Parable, _Victor Antiochenus_, on _Mark_ iv. as he is
cited by _Vossius_, in his _Pelagian History_, Book 7. saith, “That
our Lord Christ hath liberally sown the divine Seed of the Word, and
proposed it to all, without Respect of Persons; and as he that soweth
distinguisheth not betwixt Ground and Ground, but simply calleth in
the Seed without Distinction, so our Saviour hath offered the Food of
the divine Word so far as was his Part, although he was not ignorant
what would become of many. _Lastly_, He so behaved himself, as he
might justly say, What should I have done that I have not done?” And
to this answered the Parable of the _Talents_, Mat. xxv. he that had
_two Talents_ was accepted, as well as he that had _five_, because he
used them to his Master’s Profit: And he that had _one_ might have done
so; his Talent was of the same Nature of the rest; it was as capable
to have proportionably brought forth its Interest as the rest. And so
though there be not a like Proportion of Grace given to all, to some
_five Talents_, to some _two Talents_, and to some but _one Talent_;
yet there is given to all that which is sufficient, and no more is
required than according to that which is given: _For unto whomsoever
much is given, from him shall much be required_, Luke xii. 48. He that
had the _two Talents_ was accepted for giving _four_, nothing less than
he that gave the _ten_: So should he also that gave the _one_, if he
had given _two_; and no doubt _one_ was capable to have produced _two_,
as well as _five_ to have produced _ten_, or _two four_.

§. XXIII. [Sidenote: Pro. III.] [Sidenote: _The Light is the Gospel,
the Power of God, _preached_ in every Creature under Heaven._]
_Thirdly_, This saving spiritual Light is the Gospel, which the Apostle
saith expresly, is preached _in every Creature under Heaven_; even
that very _Gospel whereof Paul was made a Minister_, Col. i. 23. For
the Gospel is not a mere Declaration of good Things, being the _Power
of God unto Salvation to all those that believe_, Rom. i. 16. Though
the outward Declaration of the Gospel be taken sometimes for the
Gospel; yet it is but figuratively, and by a _Metonymy_. For to speak
properly, the Gospel is this inward Power and Life which preacheth
_glad Tidings_ in the Hearts of all Men, offering Salvation unto them,
and seeking to redeem them from their Iniquities, and therefore it is
said to be preached _in every Creature under Heaven_: Whereas there
are many Thousands of Men and Women, to whom the outward Gospel was
never preached. Therefore, the Apostle _Paul_, _Romans_ i. where he
saith, _The Gospel is the Power of God unto Salvation_, adds, That
_therein is revealed the Righteousness of God from Faith to Faith_;
and also the _Wrath of God against such as hold the Truth of God in
Unrighteousness_: For this Reason, saith he, _Because that which may
be known of God is manifest in them; for God hath shewed it unto
them_. Now that which may be known of God, is known by the Gospel,
which was manifest in them. For those of whom the Apostle speaks, had
no outward Gospel preached unto them; so that it was by the inward
Manifestation of the Knowledge of God _in them_, which is indeed the
Gospel preached in Men, _That the Righteousness of God is revealed from
Faith to Faith_; that is, it reveals to the Soul that which is just,
good, and righteous; and that as the Soul receiveth it, and believes,
Righteousness comes more and more to be revealed from one Degree of
Faith to another. For though, as the following Verse saith, the outward
Creation declares the Power of God; yet _that which may be known of
him is manifest within_: By which inward Manifestation, we are made
capable to see and discern the eternal Power and Godhead in the outward
Creation; so, were it not for this inward Principle, we could no more
understand the invisible Things of God by the outward visible Creation,
than a blind Man can see and discern the Variety of Shapes and Colours,
or judge of the Beauty of the outward Creation. Therefore he saith,
First, _That which may be known of God is manifest in them_, and in and
by that they may read and understand the Power and Godhead in those
Things that are outward and visible. And though any might pretend
that the outward Creation doth of itself, without any supernatural or
saving Principle in the Heart, even declare to the natural Man that
there is a God; yet what would such a Knowledge avail, if it did not
also communicate to me what the Will of God is, and how I shall do
that which is acceptable to him? [Sidenote: _The _outward Creation_
may beget a Persuasion in Man of an eternal Power or Virtue._] For the
outward Creation, though it may beget a Persuasion that there is some
eternal Power or Virtue by which the World hath had its Beginning;
yet it doth not tell me, nor doth it inform me of that which is just,
holy, and righteous; how I shall be delivered from my Temptations and
evil Affections, and come unto Righteousness; that must be from some
inward Manifestation in my Heart. Whereas those _Gentiles_, of whom
the Apostle speaks, knew by that _inward Law_, and Manifestation of
the Knowledge of God in them to distinguish betwixt Good and Evil, as
in the next Chapter appears, of which we shall speak hereafter. The
Prophet _Micah_, speaking of Man indefinitely, or in general, declares
this, _Mic._ vi. 8. _He hath shewed thee, O Man, what is good. And what
doth the Lord require of thee, but to do justly, and to love Mercy,
and to walk humbly with thy God?_ He doth not say God requires, till
he hath first assured that he hath shewed unto them. Now, because this
is shewed unto all Men, and manifest _in them_, therefore, saith the
Apostle, is the _Wrath of God revealed against them, for that they
hold the Truth in Unrighteousness_; that is, the Measure of Truth,
the Light, the Seed, the Grace _in them_: For that they _hide the
Talent in the Earth_; that is, in the earthly and unrighteous Part
in their Hearts, and suffer it not to bring forth Fruit, but to be
choked with the sensual Cares of this Life, the Fear of Reproach, and
the Deceitfulness of Riches, as by the Parables above-mentioned doth
appear. But the Apostle _Paul_ opens and illustrates this Matter yet
more, _Rom._ x. where he declares, _That the Word which he preached_
(now the Word which he preached, and the Gospel which he preached,
and whereof he was a Minister, is one and the same) _is not far off,
but nigh in the Heart and in the Mouth_; which done, he frameth as it
were the Objection of our Adversaries in the 14th and 15th Verses,
_How shall they believe in him of whom they have not heard? And how
shall they hear without a Preacher?_ This he answers in the 18th
Verse, saying, _But, I say, have they not heard? Yes verily, their
Sound went into all the Earth, and their Words unto the Ends of the
World_; [Sidenote: _The divine Preacher (the Word nigh) hath founded
in the Ears and Hearts of all Men._] insinuating, that this divine
Preacher had founded in the Ears and Hearts of _all Men_: For of the
_outward Apostles_ that Saying was not true, neither then, nor many
hundred Years after; yea, for aught we know, there may be yet great
and spacious Nations and Kingdoms that never have heard of _Christ_
nor his Apostles as outwardly. This inward and powerful _Word of God_
is yet more fully described in the Epistle to the _Hebrews_, Chap. iv.
12, 13. _For the Word of God is quick and powerful, and sharper than
any two-edged Sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of Soul
and Spirit, and of the Joints and Marrow, and is a Discerner of the
Thoughts and Intents of the Heart._ The Virtues of this spiritual Word
are here enumerated: It is _quick_, because it _searches_ and _tries
the Hearts of all_; no Man’s Heart is exempt from it: For the Apostle
gives this Reason of its being so, in the following Verse, [Sidenote:
_Before whom all Things are manifest._] _But all Things are naked and
opened unto the Eyes of him with whom we have to do: And there is not
any Creature that is not manifest in his Sight._ Though this ultimately
and mediately be referred to God, yet nearly and immediately it relates
to the _Word_ or _Light_, which, as hath been before proved, is _in
the Hearts of all_, else it had been improper to have brought it in
here. [Sidenote: _And every Thought and Intent of the Heart._] The
Apostle shews how _every Intent and Thought of the Heart is discerned
by the Word of God_, because all Things are naked before God; which
imports nothing else but it is in and by this Word whereby God sees and
discerns Man’s Thoughts; and so it must needs be in all Men, because
the Apostle saith, _There is no Creature that is not manifest in his
Sight_. [Sidenote: The _Faithful Witness_.] This then is that faithful
_Witness_ and _Messenger_ of God that bears Witness for God, and for
his Righteousness in the Hearts of all Men: _For he hath not left Man
without a Witness_, Acts xiv. 17. and he is said to be _given for a
Witness to the People_, Isa. lv. 4. And as this Word beareth Witness
for God, so it is not placed in Men only to condemn them: For as he is
given for a _Witness_, so saith the Prophet, _He is given for a Leader
and Commander_. [Sidenote: _A Leader and Commander._] _The Light is
given, that all through it may believe_, John i. 7. _For Faith cometh
by Hearing, and Hearing by the Word of God_, which is placed in Man’s
Heart, both to be a Witness for God, and to be a Means to bring Man to
God through Faith and Repentance: It is therefore _powerful_, that it
may divide betwixt the Soul and the Spirit: [Sidenote: _A two-edged
Sword._] It is like a _Two-edged Sword_, that it may cut off Iniquity
from him, and separate betwixt the Precious and the Vile; [Sidenote: _A
Fire and a Hammer._] and because Man’s Heart is cold and hard like Iron
naturally, therefore hath God placed this Word _in him_, which is said
to be like a _Fire_, and like a _Hammer_, Jer. xxiii. 29. that like as
by the Heat of the Fire the Iron, of its own Nature cold, is warmed
and softened, and by the Strength of the Hammer is framed according
to the Mind of the Worker; so the cold and hard Heart of Man is by the
Virtue and Powerfulness of this Word of God _near_ and _in_ the Heart,
as it resists not, warmed and softened, and receiveth an heavenly and
cœlestial Impression and Image. The most Part of the Fathers have
spoken at large touching this _Word_, _Seed_, _Light_, and _saving
Voice_, calling all unto Salvation, and able to save.

[Sidenote: Clem. Alex.] _Clemens Alexandrinus_ saith, _Lib. 2.
Stromat._ “The divine Word hath cried, calling all, knowing well those
that will not obey; and yet, because it is in our Power either to obey
or not to obey, that none may have a Pretext of Ignorance, it hath
made a righteous Call, and requireth but that which is according to
the Ability and Strength of every one.” The self-same, in his Warning
to the _Gentiles_; “For as,” saith he, “that Heavenly Ambassador of
the Lord, _The Grace of God, that brings Salvation, hath appeared unto
all_, _&c._ This is, the new Song, Coming and Manifestation of the
Word, which now shows itself in us, which was in the Beginning, and was
first of all.” And again, “Hear therefore, ye that are afar off; hear,
ye who are near; the Word is hid from none, the Light is common to all,
and shineth to all. There is no Darkness in the _Word_; let us hasten
to Salvation, to the new Birth, that we being many, may be gathered
into the one alone Love.” [Sidenote: _The gathering unto the one and
alone Love._] _Ibid._ he saith, “That there is infused into all, but
principally into those that are trained up in Doctrine, a certain
_divine Influence_, [Greek: tis achorrhoia theia: τις αχορῥοια θεια].”
And again, he speaks concerning the “_innate Witness_, worthy of
Belief, which of itself doth plainly chuse that which is most honest.”
And again he saith, “That it is not impossible to come unto the Truth,
and lay Hold of it, seeing it is most near to us, in our own Houses, as
the most wise _Moses_ declareth, living in three Parts of us, _viz._
in our Hands, in our Mouths, and in our Hearts. This,” saith he, “is a
most true Badge of the Truth, which is also fulfilled in three Things,
namely, in Counsel, in Action, in Speaking.” And again he saith also
unto the unbelieving Nations, “Receive Christ, receive Light, receive
Sight, to the End thou mayest rightly know both God and Man. [Sidenote:
_The enlightening Word._] The Word that hath enlightened us is more
pleasant than Gold, and the Stone of great Value.” And again, he saith,
“Let us receive the Light, that we may receive God; let us receive the
Light, that we may be the Scholars of the Lord.” And again he saith to
those Infidel Nations, “The heavenly Spirit helpeth thee; resist and
flee Pleasure.” Again, _Lib. 5. Strom._ he saith, “God forbid that Man
be not a Partaker of divine Acquaintance, [Greek: theias ennoias: θειας
εννοιας], who in _Genesis_ is said to be a Partaker of Inspiration.”
And _Pæd. Lib. 1. Cap. 3_. “There is,” saith he, “some lovely and
some desirable Thing in Man, which is called the In-breathing of God,
[Greek: emphysêma Theou: εμφυσημα Θεου].” The same Man, _Lib. 10.
Strom._ directeth Men unto the _Light_ and _Water_ in themselves, who
have the Eye of the Soul darkened or dimmed through evil Education
and Learning: Let them enter in unto their own _domestic Light_, or
unto the _Light_ which is in their own House, [Greek: pros to oikeion
phôs badizetô: προς το οικειον φως βαδιζετω], unto the _Truth_, which
manifests accurately and clearly these Things that have been written.

[Sidenote: J. Martyr.] _Justin Martyr_, in his first _Apology_, saith,
“That the Word which was and is, is in all; even that very same Word
which, through the Prophets, foretold Things to come.”

[Sidenote: Auth. de Voc. Gent.] The Writer of the _Calling of the_
Gentiles saith, _Lib. 1. Cap. 2_. “We believe according to the same
(_viz._ Scripture) and most religiously confess, that God was never
wanting in Care to the Generality of Men; who, although he did lead,
by particular Lessons, a People gathered to himself unto Godliness,
yet he withdrew from no Nation of Men the Gifts of his own Goodness,
that they might be convinced that they had received the Words of the
Prophets, and legal Commands in Services and Testimonies of the first
Principles.” Cap. 7. he saith, “That he believes that the Help of Grace
hath been wholly withdrawn from no Man.” _Lib. 2. Cap. 1._ “Because,
albeit Salvation is far from Sinners, yet there is nothing void of
the Presence and Virtue of his Salvation.” _Cap. 2._ “But seeing none
of that People over whom was set both the Doctrines, were justified
but through Grace by the Spirit of Faith, who can question but that
they, who of whatsoever Nation, in whatsoever Times, could please God,
were ordered by the Spirit of the Grace of God, which, although in
fore Time it was more sparing and hid, yet denied itself to no Ages,
being in Virtue one, in Quantity different, in Counsel unchangeable, in
Operation multifarious.”

§. XXIV. [Sidenote: Prop. III.] [Sidenote: _Proved._] The third
Proposition which ought to be proved, is, _That it is by this Light,
Seed, or Grace, that God works the Salvation of all Men; and many come
to partake of the Benefit of Christ’s Death, and Salvation purchased
by him._ [Sidenote: _God’s Salvation _wrought_ by the Light in all._]
By the inward and effectual Operations of which, as many _Heathens_
have come to be Partakers of the Promises who were not of the Seed of
_Abraham_ after the Flesh, so may some now, to whom God hath rendered
the Knowledge of the History impossible, come to be saved by Christ.
Having already proved that _Christ_ hath _died for all_, that there
is a _Day of Visitation_ given to _all_, during which Salvation is
possible to them, and that God hath actually given a Measure of _saving
Grace_ and _Light_ unto _all_, preached the Gospel _to_ and _in_
them, and placed the _Word of Faith_ in their Hearts; the Matter of
this Proposition may seem to be proved. Yet shall I a little, for the
farther Satisfaction of all who desire to know the Truth, and hold
it as it is in Jesus, prove this from two or three clear Scripture
Testimonies, and remove the most common as well as the more strong
Objections usually brought against it.

[Sidenote: 1 Part.] Our Theme then hath two Parts; First, _That those
that have the Gospel and Christ outwardly preached unto them, are not
saved but by the Working of the Grace and Light in their Hearts_.

[Sidenote: 2 Part.] Secondly, _That by the Working and Operation of
this, many have been, and some may be saved, to whom the Gospel hath
never been outwardly preached, and who are utterly ignorant of the
outward History of Christ_.

[Sidenote: 1 Part. _Proved._] As to the first, though it be
granted by most, yet because it is more in Words than Deeds (the more
full discussing of which will occur in the next Proposition concerning
_Justification_) I shall prove it in few Words. And first from the
Words of Christ to _Nicodemus_, John iii. 3. _Verily, verily I say
unto thee, except a Man be born again, he cannot see the Kingdom of
God._ [Sidenote: _The New Birth (or Regeneration) cometh not by the
outward Knowledge of Christ._] Now this Birth cometh not by the outward
Preaching of the Gospel, or Knowledge of Christ, or historical Faith
in him; seeing many have that, and firmly believe it, who are never
thus renewed. The Apostle _Paul_ also goes so far, while he commends
the Necessity and Excellency of this _new Creation_, as in a certain
Respect to lay aside the outward Knowledge of Christ, or the Knowledge
of him after the Flesh, in these Words, 2 _Cor._ v. 16, 17. _Wherefore
henceforth know we no Man after the Flesh; yea, though we have known
Christ after the Flesh, yet now henceforth know we him no more.
Therefore if any Man be in Christ, he is a new Creature, old Things are
passed away, behold all Things are become new._ Whence it manifestly
appears, that he makes the Knowledge of Christ after the Flesh but as
it were the Rudiments which young Children learn, which after they are
become better Scholars, are of less Use to them; because they have and
possess the very Substance of those first Precepts in their Minds. As
all Comparisons halt in some Part, so shall I not affirm this to hold
in every Respect; yet so far will this hold, that as those that go no
farther than the Rudiments are never to be accounted learned, and as
they grow beyond these Things, so they have less Use of them, even
so such as go no farther than the outward Knowledge of Christ shall
never inherit the Kingdom of Heaven. But such as come to know this
_new Birth_, to be in Christ indeed, to be a _new Creature_, to have
_Old Things passed away, and all Things become new_, may safely say
with the Apostle, _Though we have known Christ after the Flesh, yet
now henceforth know we him no more_. [Sidenote: _But by the Work of
Light and Grace in the Heart._] Now this _new Creature_ proceeds from
the Work of this _Light_ and _Grace_ in the Heart: It is that Word
which we speak of, that is sharp and piercing, that _implanted Word_,
able to save the Soul, by which this Birth is begotten; and therefore
Christ has purchased unto us this holy Seed, that thereby this Birth
might be brought forth _in_ us, which is therefore also called _the
Manifestation of the Spirit, given to every one to profit withal_;
for it is written, that _by one Spirit we are all baptized into one
Body_. And the Apostle _Peter_ also ascribeth this Birth to the Seed
and Word of God, which we have so much declared of, saying, 1 _Pet._ i.
23. _Being born again, not of corruptible Seed, but of incorruptible,
by the Word of God, which liveth and abideth for ever._ Though then
this Seed be small in its Appearance, so that Christ compares it to a
_Grain of Mustard-seed, which is the least of all Seeds_, Matth. xiii.
31, 32. and that it be hid in the earthly Part of Man’s Heart; yet
therein is Life and Salvation towards the Sons of Men wrapped up, which
comes to be revealed as they give Way to it. [Sidenote: _The Kingdom
of God is in the _Seed_, in the Hearts of all Men._] And in this Seed
in the Hearts of all Men is the _Kingdom of God_, as in Capacity to
be produced, or rather exhibited, according as it receives Depth, is
nourished, and not choked: Hence Christ saith, that _The Kingdom of
God was in the very Pharisees_, Luke xvii. 20, 21. who did oppose and
resist him, and were justly accounted as _Serpents_, and a _Generation
of Vipers_. Now the _Kingdom of God_ could be no otherwise in them
than in a _Seed_, even as the _Thirty-fold_ and the _Hundred-fold_
is wrapt up in a small Seed, lying in a barren Ground, which springs
not forth because it wants Nourishment: And as the whole Body of a
great Tree is wrapped up potentially in the Seed of the Tree, and so
is brought forth in due Season; and as the Capacity of a Man or Woman
is not only in a Child, but even in the very _Embryo_, even so the
_Kingdom of Jesus Christ_, yea, _Jesus Christ _himself_, Christ within,
who is the Hope of Glory_, and becometh _Wisdom_, _Righteousness_,
_Sanctification_ and _Redemption_, is in every Man’s and Woman’s Heart,
in that little _incorruptible Seed_, ready to be brought forth, as it
is cherished and received in the Love of it. For there can be no Men
worse than those rebellious and unbelieving _Pharisees_ were; and yet
this _Kingdom_ was thus _within them_, and they were directed to look
for it there: So it is neither _lo here_, nor _lo there_, in this or
the other Observation, that this is known, but as this Seed of God in
the Heart is minded and entertained. And certainly hence it is, even
because this Light, Seed, and Grace that appears in the Heart of Man
is so little regarded, and so much overlooked, that so few know Christ
brought forth in them. [Sidenote: Calvinists, Papists, Arminians _and
_Socinians_ Errors denying the Light to be saving._] The one Sort,
to wit, the _Calvinists_, they look upon Grace as an irresistible
Power, and therefore neglect and despise this eternal Seed of the
Kingdom in their Hearts, as a low, insufficient, useless Thing as to
their Salvation. On the other Hand, the _Papists_, _Arminians_, and
_Socinians_, they go about to set up their natural Power and Will with
one Consent, denying that this little Seed, this small Appearance of
the Light, is that supernatural saving Grace of God given to every Man
to save him. And so upon them is verified that Saying of the Lord Jesus
Christ, _This is the Condemnation of the World, that Light is come
into the World, but Men love Darkness rather than Light_; the Reason
is added, _Because their Deeds are evil_. All confess they feel this;
but they will not have it to be of that Virtue. Some will have it to
be _Reason_; some a _natural Conscience_; some, _certain Reliques of
God’s Image, that remained in_ Adam. So that Christ, as he met with
Opposition from all Kinds of Professors in his outward Appearance, doth
now also in his inward. [Sidenote: _The Meanness of Christ’s Appearance
in the Flesh._] It was the Meanness of his outward Man that made many
despise him, saying, _Is not this the Son of the Carpenter? Are not
his Brethren and Sisters among us? Is not this a_ Galilean_? And
came there ever a Prophet out of_ Galilee? And such-like Reasonings.
For they expected an outward Deliverer, who as a Prince should deliver
them with great Ease from their Enemies, and not such a MESSIAH as
should be crucified shamefully, and as it were lead them into many
Sorrows, Troubles, and Afflictions. So the Meanness of this Appearance
makes the crafty _Jesuits_, the pretended rational Socinians, and the
learned _Arminians_, overlook it; desiring rather something that they
might exercise their Subtilty, Reason, and Learning about, and use the
Liberty of their own Wills. And the secure _Calvinists_, they would
have a Christ to save them without any Trouble; to destroy all their
Enemies for them without them, and nothing or little within, and in
the mean While to be at Ease to live in their Sins secure. [Sidenote:
_The Nature of the Light._] Whence, when all is well examined, the
Cause is plain; it is _Because their Deeds are Evil_, that with one
Consent they reject this _Light_: For it checks the wisest of them all,
and the learnedest of them all; in Secret it reproves them; neither
can all their _Logick_ silence it, nor can the securest among them
stop its Voice from crying, and reproving them within, for all their
Confidence in the outward Knowledge of Christ, or of what he hath
suffered outwardly for them. For, as hath been often said, _In a Day
it strives with all, wrestles with all_; and it is the unmortified
Nature, the first Nature, the old _Adam_, yet alive in the wisest,
in the learnedest, in the most zealous for the outward Knowledge of
Christ, that denies this, that despises it, that shuts it out, to their
own Condemnation. They come all under this Description, _Every one
that doeth evil hateth the Light, neither cometh to the Light, lest
his Deeds should be reproved_, John iii. 20. So that it may be said,
now, and we can say from a true and certain Experience, as it was of
old, _Psalm_ cxviii. 22. _Mat._ xxi. 42. _Mark_ xii. 10. _Luke_ xx.
17. _Acts_ iv. 11. _The Stone which the Builders_ of all Kinds _have
rejected, the same is become unto us the Head of the Corner._ Glory to
God for ever! who hath chosen us as First-fruits to himself in this
Day, wherein he is arisen to plead with the Nations; and therefore hath
sent us forth to preach this everlasting Gospel unto all, Christ nigh
to all, the Light in all, the Seed sown in the Hearts of all, that
Men may come and apply their Minds to it. And we rejoice that we have
been made to lay down our Wisdom and Learning (such of us as have had
some of it) and our carnal Reasoning, to learn of Jesus; and sit down
at the Feet of Jesus in our Hearts, and hear him, who there makes all
Things manifest, and reproves all Things by his Light, _Ephes._ v.
13. For many are wise and learned in the Notion, in the Letter of the
Scripture, [Sidenote: _The Wise and Learned in the Notion, Crucifiers
of Christ._] as the _Pharisees_ were, and can speak much of Christ,
and plead strongly against _Infidels_, _Turks_, and _Jews_, and it may
be also against some _Heresies_, who, in the mean Time, are crucifying
Christ in the small Appearance of his Seed in their Hearts. Oh! better
were it to be stripped and naked of all, to account it as Dross and
Dung, and become a Fool for Christ’s Sake, thus knowing him to teach
thee in thy Heart, so as thou mayest witness him raised there, feel
the Virtue of his Cross there, and say with the Apostle, _I glory in
nothing, save in the Cross of Christ, whereby I am crucified to the
World, and the World unto me_. This is better than to write thousands
of Commentaries, and to preach many Sermons. And it is thus to preach
Christ, and direct People to his pure Light in the Heart, that God
hath raised us up, and for which the wise Men of this World account
us Fools; [Sidenote: _None are saved by the Knowledge of the History,
but by the Operation of the Light of Christ in the Mystery._] because
by the Operation of this Cross of Christ in our Hearts, we have
denied our own Wisdom and Wills in many Things, and have forsaken the
vain Worships, Fashions, and Customs of this World. For these divers
Centuries the World hath been full of a dry, fruitless, and barren
Knowledge of Christ, feeding upon the Husk, and neglecting the Kernel;
following after the Shadow, but Strangers to the Substance. Hence the
Devil matters not how much of that Knowledge abounds, provided he can
but possess the Heart, and rule in the Will, crucify the Appearance of
Christ there, and so keep the Seed of the Kingdom from taking Root.
[Sidenote: _Contentions about outward Observations and Lo here’s._]
For he has led them abroad, _lo here_, and _lo there_, and has made
them wrestle in a false Zeal so much one against another, contending
for this outward Observation, and for the other outward Observation,
seeking CHRIST in this and the other external Thing, as in _Bread_
and _Wine_; contending one with another how he is there, while some
will have him to be present therein this Way, and some the other Way;
and some in Scriptures, in Books, in Societies, and Pilgrimages, and
Merits. But some, confiding in an external barren Faith, think all is
well, if they do but firmly believe that he died for their Sins past,
present, and to come; while in the mean Time Christ lies crucified
and slain, and is daily resisted and gainsayed in his Appearance in
their Hearts. [Sidenote: _The Call of God to blinded Christendom._]
Thus, from a Sense of this Blindness and Ignorance that is come over
Christendom, it is that we are led and moved of the Lord so constantly
and frequently to call all, invite all, intreat all, to turn to the
Light in them, to mind the Light in them, to believe in Christ, as he
is in them: And that in the Name, Power, and Authority of the Lord, not
in School-arguments and Distinctions (for which many of the wise Men
of this World account us Fools and Mad-men) we do charge and command
them to lay aside their Wisdom, to come down out of that proud, airy,
Brain-knowledge, and to stop that Mouth, how eloquent soever to the
worldly Ear it may appear, and to be silent, and sit down as in the
Dust, and to mind the Light of Christ in their own Consciences; which,
if minded, they would find as a _sharp two-edged Sword_ in their
Hearts, and as a _Fire_ and a _Hammer_, that would knock against and
burn up all that carnal, gathered, natural Stuff, and make the stoutest
of them all tremble, and become _Quakers_ indeed: Which those that come
not to feel now, and kiss not the Son while the Day lasteth, but harden
their Hearts, will feel to be a certain Truth when it is too late.
To conclude, as saith the Apostle, _All ought to examine themselves,
whether they be in the Faith indeed; and try their ownselves: For
except Jesus Christ be in them, they are certainly Reprobates_, 2 Cor.
xiii. 5.

§. XXV. [Sidenote: 2 Part.] [Sidenote: _Proved._] [Sidenote: _That
many by the Light may be saved, that have not the outward Knowledge of
Christ._] _Secondly_, That which remains now to be proved, is, _That by
the Operation of this Light and Seed, some have been, and may yet be
saved, to whom the Gospel is not outwardly preached, nor the History
of Christ outwardly known_. To make this the easier, we have already
shewn how that Christ hath died for all Men; and consequently these
are enlightened by Christ, and have a Measure of saving Light and
Grace; yea, that the Gospel, though not in any outward Dispensation,
is preached to them, and in them: So that thereby they are stated in a
Possibility of Salvation. From which I may thus argue:

[Sidenote: Arg.] To whom the Gospel, the Power of God unto Salvation,
is manifest, they may be saved, whatever outward Knowledge they want:

But this Gospel is preached _in every Creature_; in which is certainly
comprehended many that have not the outward Knowledge:

Therefore of those many may be saved.

But to those Arguments, by which it hath been proved, _That all Men
have a Measure of saving Grace_, I shall add one, and that very
observable, not yet mentioned, _viz._ that excellent Saying of the
Apostle _Paul_ to _Titus_, Chap. ii. Ver. 11. _The Grace of God, that
brings Salvation, hath appeared to all Men; teaching us, That denying
Ungodliness and worldly Lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and
godly, in this present World_: Than which there can be nothing more
clear, it comprehending both the Parts of the Controversy. _First_, It
testifies that it is no natural Principle or Light, but saith plainly,
_It brings Salvation_. _Secondly_, It says not, that it hath appeared
to a _few_, but _unto all Men_. [Sidenote: _The saving Grace of God
teacheth the whole Duty of Man._] The Fruit of it declares also how
efficacious it is, seeing it comprehends the whole Duty of Man: It
both teacheth us, first, to forsake Evil, to deny Ungodliness and
worldly Lusts; and then it teacheth us our whole Duty. _First_, to
live _Soberly_; that comprehends Temperance, Chastity, Meekness, and
those Things that relate unto a Man’s self. _Secondly_, _Righteously_;
that comprehends Equity, Justice, and Honesty, and those Things which
relate to our Neighbours. And lastly, _Godly_; which comprehends Piety,
Faithfulness, and Devotion, which are the Duties relating to God. So
then there is nothing required of Man, or is needful to Man, which
this Grace teacheth not. Yet I have heard a public Preacher (one of
those that are accounted zealous Men) to evade the Strength of this
Text, deny this Grace to be saving, and say, _It was only intended of
common Favours and Graces, such as is the Heat of the Fire, and outward
Light of the Sun_. Such is the Darkness and Ignorance of those that
oppose the Truth; whereas the Text saith expresly, that it is _saving_.
[Sidenote: _The Absurdities of our Adversaries Comment upon the Word
_All_, denying Grace to be saving._ Tit. 2. 11.] Others, that cannot
deny but it is saving, alledge, This [_All_] comprehends not every
Individual, but only all Kinds: But is a bare Negation sufficient to
overturn the Strength of a positive Assertion? If the Scriptures may
be so abused, what so absurd, as may not be pleaded for from them? Or
what so manifest, as may not be denied? But we have no Reason to be
staggered by their denying, so long as our Faith is found in express
Terms of Scripture; they may as well seek to persuade us, that we
do not intend that which we affirm (though we know the Contrary) as
make us believe, that when the Apostle speaks forth our Doctrine in
plain Words, yet he intends theirs, which is quite the Contrary. And
indeed, can there be any Thing more absurd, than to say, where the
Word is plainly [_All_] _Few_ is only intended? For they will not have
[_All_] taken here for the _greater Number_. Indeed, as the Case may be
sometimes, by a Figure [_All_] may be taken, of two Numbers, for the
greater Number; but let them shew us, if they can, either in Scripture,
or profane or ecclesiastical Writings, that any Man that wrote Sense
did ever use the Word [_All_] to express, of two Numbers, the lesser.
Whereas they affirm, that the far lesser Number have received saving
Grace; and yet will they have the Apostle, by [_All_] to have signified
so. Though this might suffice, yet, to put it further beyond all
Question, I shall instance another Saying of the same Apostle, that
we may use him as his own Commentator, _Rom._ v. 18. _Therefore as
by the Offence of One, Judgment come upon all Men to Condemnation,
even so by the Righteousness of One, the Free-gift came upon all Men
unto Justification of Life._ Here no Man of Reason, except he will be
obstinately ignorant, will deny, but this similitive Particle [_As_]
makes the [_All_] which goes before, and comes after, to be of one
and the same Extent; or else let them shew one Example, either in
Scripture, or elsewhere, among Men that speak proper Language, where it
is otherwise. We must then either affirm that this Loss, which leads to
Condemnation, hath not come upon _all_; or say, that this free Gift is
come upon _all_ by Christ. Whence I thus argue:

[Sidenote: Arg.] If all Men have received a Loss from _Adam_, which
leads to Condemnation; then all Men have received a Gift from _Christ_,
which leads to Justification:

But the first is true: Therefore also the last.

[Sidenote: _Even the _Heathens_ may be saved by the Light._] From all
which it naturally follows, that all Men, even the _Heathens_, may be
saved: For _Christ_ was given as a _Light to enlighten the Gentiles_,
_Isa._ xlix. 6. Now, to say that though they might have been saved, yet
none were, is to judge too uncharitably. I see not what Reason can be
alleged for it; yea, though it were granted, which never can be, that
none of the _Heathens_ were saved; it will not from thence follow, That
they could not have been saved; or that none now in their Condition can
be saved. For, _A non esse ad non posse non datur sequela_, _i. e._
That Consequence is false, that concludes a Thing cannot be, because it
is not.

[Sidenote: Obj.] But if it be objected, which is the great Objection,
_That there is no Name under Heaven, by which Salvation is known, but
by the Name_ JESUS:

_Therefore they (not knowing this) cannot be saved._

[Sidenote: _Answ._] I answer; Though they know it not outwardly, yet
if they know it inwardly, by feeling the Virtues and Power of it, the
Name JESUS indeed, which signifies a _Saviour_, to free them from Sin
and Iniquity in their Hearts, they are saved by it: [Sidenote: _The
literal Knowledge of Christ is not saving; but the real experimental._]
I confess there is no other Name to be saved by: But Salvation lieth
not in the literal, but in the experimental Knowledge; albeit those
that have the literal Knowledge are not saved by it, without this real
experimental Knowledge: Yet those that have the real Knowledge may be
saved without the external; as by the Arguments hereafter brought will
more appear. For if the outward distinct Knowledge of him, by whose
Means I receive Benefit, were necessary for me before I could reap any
Fruit of it; then, by the Rule of _Contraries_, it would follow, that I
could receive no Hurt, without I had also the distinct Knowledge of him
that occasioned it; whereas Experience proves the Contrary. How many
are injured by _Adam_’s Fall, that know nothing of there ever being
such a Man in the World, or of his eating the forbidden Fruit? Why
may they not then be saved by the Gift and Grace of _Christ_ in them,
making them righteous and holy, though they know not distinctly how
that was purchased unto them by the Death and Sufferings of _Jesus_
that was crucified at _Jerusalem_; especially seeing God hath made that
Knowledge simply impossible to them? As many Men are killed by Poison
infused into their Meat, though they neither know what the Poison was,
nor who infused it; so also on the other Hand, how many are cured of
their Diseases by good Remedies, who know not how the Medicine is
prepared, what the Ingredients are, nor oftentimes who made it? The
like may also hold in spiritual Things, as we shall hereafter prove.

§. XXVI. [Sidenote: _The outward Knowledge not essential to Salvation:
Instance in Infants and deaf Persons._] _First_, If there were such
an absolute Necessity for this outward Knowledge, that it were even
of the Essentials of Salvation, then none could be saved without it;
whereas our Adversaries deny not, but readily confess, that many
Infants and deaf Persons are saved without it: So that here they break
that general Rule, and make Salvation possible without it. Neither can
they allege, that it is because such are free from Sin; seeing they
also affirm, that all Infants, because of _Adam_’s Sin, deserve eternal
Condemnation, as being really guilty in the Sight of God; and of deaf
People, it is not to be doubted, and Experience shews us, that they are
subject to many common Iniquities, as well as other Men.

[Sidenote: Obj. 1.] If it be said, _That these Children are the
Children of believing Parents_:

[Sidenote: _Answ._] What then? They will not say that they transmit
Grace to their Children. Do they not affirm, That the Children of
believing Parents are guilty of original Sin, and deserve Death as well
as others? How prove they that that makes up the Loss of all explicit

[Sidenote: Obj. 2.] If they say, _Deaf People may be made sensible of
the Gospel by Signs_:

[Sidenote: _Answ._] All the Signs cannot give them any explicit
Knowledge of the History of the Death, Sufferings, and Resurrection of
Christ. For what Signs can inform a deaf Man, _That the Son of God took
on him Man’s Nature, was born of a Virgin, and suffered under_ Pontius

[Sidenote: Obj. 3.] And if they should further allege, _That they
are within the Bosom of the visible Church, and Partakers of the

[Sidenote: _Answ._] All that gives no Certainty of Salvation; for, as
the _Protestants_ confess, they confer not Grace _ex opere operato_.
And will they not acknowledge, that many are in the Bosom of the
Church, who are visibly no Members of it? But if this Charity be
extended towards such who are where the Gospel is preached, so that
they may be judged capable of Salvation, because they are under a
simple Impossibility of distinctly knowing the Means of Salvation;
what Reason can be alleged why the like Charity may not be had to
such, as though they can hear, yet are under a simple Impossibility of
hearing, because it is not spoken unto them? [Sidenote: _A _Chinese_ or
_Indian_ excusable for not knowing the History of the Death of Christ_,
&c.] Is not a Man in _China_, or in _India_, as much to be excused
for not knowing a Thing which he never heard of, as a deaf Man here,
who cannot hear? For as the deaf Man is not to be blamed, because God
hath been pleased to suffer him to lie under this Infirmity; so is the
_Chinese_ or the _Indian_ as excusable, because God hath with-held from
him the Opportunity of hearing. He that cannot hear a Thing, as being
necessarily absent, and he that cannot hear it, as being naturally
deaf, are to be placed in the same Category.

[Sidenote: _Answ. 2._] _Secondly_, This manifestly appears by that
Saying of _Peter_, Acts x. 34. _Of a Truth I perceive that God is
no Respecter of Persons; but in every Nation, he that feareth him,
and worketh Righteousness, is accepted of him_. _Peter_ was before
liable to that Mistake that the rest of the _Jews_ were in; judging
that all were unclean, except themselves, and that no Man could be
saved, except they were proselyted to their Religion, and circumcised.
But God shewed _Peter_ otherwise in a Vision, and taught him to call
nothing _common_ or _unclean_; [Sidenote: _God regarded the Prayers
of _Cornelius_, a Stranger to the Law._] and therefore, seeing that
God regarded the Prayers of _Cornelius_, who was a Stranger to the
Law, and to Jesus Christ as to the outward, yet _Peter_ saw that God
had accepted him; and he is said to _fear God_ before he had this
outward Knowledge: Therefore _Peter_ concludes that every one in every
Nation, without respect of Persons, that feareth God and worketh
Righteousness, is accepted of him. So he makes the Fear of God and the
working of Righteousness, and not an outward historical Knowledge,
the _Qualification_: They then that have this, wherever they be, they
are saved. Now we have already proved, that to every Man that Grace is
given, whereby he may live godlily and righteously; and we see, that
by this Grace _Cornelius_ did so, and was accepted, and his Prayers
came up for a Memorial before God before he had this outward Knowledge.
[Sidenote: _From what Scripture did _Job_ learn his excellent
Knowledge?_] Also, Was not _Job a perfect and upright Man, that feared
God, and eschewed Evil_? Who taught _Job_ this? How knew _Job Adam_’s
Fall? And from what Scripture learned he that excellent Knowledge he
had, and that Faith, by which he knew his _Redeemer lived_? (For many
make him as old as _Moses_). Was not this by an inward Grace in the
Heart? Was it not that inward Grace that taught _Job_ to eschew Evil,
and to fear God? And was it not by the Workings thereof that he became
a just and upright Man? How doth he reprove the Wickedness of Men,
_Chap._ xxiv? And after he hath numbered up their Wickedness, doth he
not condemn them, _Ver. 13._ for _rebelling_ against this _Light_,
for not knowing the Way thereof, nor abiding in the Paths thereof? It
appears then _Job_ believed that Men had a Light, and that because they
rebelled against it, therefore they knew not its Ways, and abode not in
its Paths; even as the _Pharisees_, who had the Scriptures, are said
to _err_, not knowing the Scriptures. [Sidenote: Job_’s Friends; their
excellent Sayings._] And also _Job_’s Friends, though in some Things
wrong; yet who taught them all those excellent Sayings and Knowledge
which they had? Did not God give it them, in order to save them? or was
it merely to condemn them? Who taught _Elihu_, That _the Inspiration of
the Almighty giveth Understanding_; _that the Spirit of God made him_,
_and the Breath of the Almighty gave him Life_? And did not the Lord
accept a Sacrifice for them? And who dare say that they are damned?
But further, the Apostle puts this Controversy out of Doubt; for, if
we may believe his plain Assertions, he tells us, _Rom._ ii. _That the
_Heathens_ did the Things contained in the Law._ From whence I thus

[Sidenote: Arg.] In every Nation he that feareth God, and worketh
Righteousness, is accepted:

But many of the _Heathens_ feared God, and wrought Righteousness:

Therefore they were accepted.

The _Minor_ is proved from the Example of _Cornelius_: But I shall
further prove it thus;

He that doth the Things contained in the Law, feareth God, and worketh

But the _Heathens_ did the Things contained in the Law:

Therefore they feared God, and wrought Righteousness.

Can there be any Thing more clear? For if to do the Things contained in
the Law, be not to fear God, and work Righteousness, then what can be
said to do so, seeing the Apostle calls the Law _Spiritual_, _Holy_,
_Just_, and _Good_? But this appears manifestly by another _Medium_,
taken out of the same Chapter, _Ver._ 13. So that nothing can be more
clear: The Words are, _The Doers of the Law shall be justified_. From
which I thus argue, without adding any Word of my own;

[Sidenote: Arg.] The Doers of the Law shall be justified:

But the _Gentiles_ do the Things contained in the Law:

[Sidenote: _The _Gentiles_ justified doing the Law._] All that know
but a Conclusion, do easily see what follows from these express Words
of the Apostle. And indeed, he through that whole Chapter labours,
as if he were contending now with our Adversaries, to confirm this
Doctrine, Ver. 9, 10, 11. _Tribulation and Anguish upon every Soul
of Man that doth Evil, to the _Jew_ first, and also to the Gentile:
For there is no Respect of Persons with God._ Where the _Apostle_
clearly _homologates_, or confesses to the Sentence of _Peter_
before-mentioned; and shews that _Jew_ and _Gentile_, or as he himself
explains in the following _Verses_, both they that have an outward Law
and they that have none, when they _do Good_ shall be _justified_. And
to put us out of all Doubt, in the very following Verses he tells, That
_the Doers of the Law are justified_; and that the _Gentiles did the
Law_. So that except we think he spake not what he intended, we may
safely conclude, that such _Gentiles_ were justified, and did partake
of that Honour, Glory, and Peace, which comes upon every one that doth
Good; even the _Gentiles_, that are without the Law, when they _work
Good_; seeing with God there is no _Respect of Persons_. So as we see,
that it is not the having the outward Knowledge that doth save, without
the inward; so neither doth the Want of it, to such to whom God hath
made it impossible, who have the inward, bring Condemnation. And many
that have wanted the Outward, have had a Knowledge of this inwardly, by
Virtue of that inward Grace and Light given to every Man, working in
them, by which they forsook Iniquity, and became just and holy, as is
above proved; [Sidenote: _Many wanting the History, were sensible of
the Loss by _Adam_, and Salvation come by Christ in themselves._] who,
though they knew not the History of _Adam_’s Fall, yet were sensible in
themselves of the Loss that came by it, feeling their Inclinations to
sin, and the Body of Sin in them: And though they knew not the Coming
of Christ, yet were sensible of that inward Power and Salvation which
came by him, even before as well as since his Appearance in the Flesh.
For I question whether these Men can prove, that all the _Patriarchs_
and _Fathers_ before _Moses_ had a distinct Knowledge either of the one
or the other, or that they knew the History of the Tree of Knowledge
of Good and Evil, and of _Adam_’s eating the forbidden Fruit; far
less that Christ should be born of a Virgin, should be crucified,
and treated in the Manner he was. For it is justly to be believed,
that what _Moses_ wrote of _Adam_, and of the first Times, was not by
Tradition, but by Revelation; [Sidenote: _How little the _Jews_ knew
Christ, mistaking the Prophets._] yea, we see that not only after
the Writing of _Moses_, but even of _David_ and all the _Prophets_,
who prophesied so much of Christ, how little the _Jews_, that were
expecting and wishing for the _Messiah_, could thereby discern him when
he came, that they crucified him as a _Blasphemer_, not as a _Messiah_,
by mistaking the Prophecies concerning him; for _Peter_ saith expresly,
_Acts_ iii. 17. to the _Jews_, _That both they and their Rulers did
it through Ignorance_. And _Paul_ saith, 1 _Cor._ ii. 8. _That had
they known it, they would not have crucified the Lord of Glory._ Yea,
_Mary_ herself, to whom the Angel had spoken, and who had laid up all
the miraculous Things accompanying his Birth in her Heart, she did not
understand how, when _he disputed with the Doctors in the Temple,
that he was about his Father’s Business_. And the Apostles that had
believed him, conversed daily with him, and saw his Miracles, could not
understand, neither believe those Things which related to his _Death_,
_Sufferings_, and _Resurrection_, but were in a certain Respect
stumbled at them.

§. XXVII. So we see how that it is the inward Work, and not the outward
History and Scripture, that gives the true Knowledge; [Sidenote: _The
_Heathens_ were sensible of the Loss received by _Adam.] and by
this inward _Light_ many of the _Heathen Philosophers_ were sensible
of the Loss received by _Adam_, though they knew not the outward
History: Hence _Plato_ asserted, That _Man’s Soul was fallen into a
dark Cave, where it only conversed with Shadows_. _Pythagoras_ saith,
_Man wandereth in this World as a Stranger, banished from the Presence
of God_. And _Plotinus_ compareth _Man’s Soul, fallen from God, to
a Cinder, or dead Coal, out of which the Fire is extinguished_.
[Sidenote: Heathen-Philosophers _Divine Knowledge_. Plato. Pythag.
Plotin.] Some of them said, That _the Wings of the Soul were clipped or
fallen off, so that it could not flee unto God_. All which, and many
more such Expressions, that might be gathered out of their Writings,
shew, that they were not without a Sense of this Loss. Also they had
a Knowledge and Discovery of Jesus Christ inwardly, as a Remedy _in_
them, to deliver them from that evil Seed, and the evil Inclinations of
their own Hearts, though not under that particular Denomination.

Some called him an _Holy Spirit_, as _Seneca_, Epist. 41. who said,
_There is an holy Spirit in us, that treateth us as we treat him._
[Sidenote: Cicero _calls it an Innate Light. _Lactan._ In Sect._]
_Cicero_ calleth it an _innate Light_, in his Book _De Republica_,
cited by _Lactantius_, 6 _Instit._ where he calls this _Right Reason,
given unto all, constant and eternal, calling unto Duty by commanding,
and deterring from Deceit by forbidding_. Adding, _That it cannot be
abrogated, neither can any be freed from it, neither by Senate or
People; that it is one, eternal, and the same always to all Nations;
so that there is not one at _Rome_, and another at _Athens_: Whoso
obeys it not, must flee from himself, and in this is greatly tormented,
although he should escape all other Punishments_. _Plotinus_ also calls
him _Light_, saying, That _as the Sun cannot be known but by its own
Light, so God cannot be known but with his own Light: And as the Eye
cannot see the Sun but by receiving its Image, so Man cannot know God
but by receiving his Image; and that it behoveth Man to come to Purity
of Heart before he could know God_; calling him also _Wisdom_, a name
frequently given him in Scripture; see _Prov._ i. 20. to the End; and
_Prov._ viii. 9, 34. where _Wisdom_ is said to cry, intreat, and invite
all to come unto her, and learn of her: And what is this _Wisdom_ but
Christ? Hence such as came among the _Heathen_, to forsake Evil and
cleave to Righteousness, were called _Philosophers_, that is, Lovers
of _Wisdom_. [Sidenote: Philosophers _whence so called?_] They knew
this _Wisdom_ was nigh unto them, and that _The best Knowledge of God,
and divine Mysteries, was by the Inspiration of the Wisdom of God_.
[Sidenote: Phocylides.] _Phocylides_ affirmed, That _the Word of the
Wisdom of God was best_. His Words in the Greek are, [Greek: Tês de
Theopneustou sophias logos estin aristos: Της δε Θεοπνευσςου σοφιας
λογος εστιν αριστος].

And much more of this Kind might be instanced, by which it appears
they knew Christ; and by his working _in_ them, were brought from
Unrighteousness to Righteousness, and to love that Power by which they
felt themselves redeemed; so that, as saith the Apostle, _They shew the
Work of the Law written in their Hearts, and did the Things contained
in the Law_; and therefore, as _all Doers of the Law are, were no
Doubt justified_, and saved thus by the Power of Christ _in_ them. And
as this was the Judgment of the Apostle, so was it of the primitive
Christians. [Sidenote: Socrates _a Christian_, &c.] Hence _Justin
Martyr_ stuck not to call _Socrates a Christian_, saying, That _all
such as lived according to the divine Word in them, which was in all
Men, were Christians_, _such as_ Socrates _and_ Heraclitus, and others
among the Greeks, _&c._ _That such as live with the Word, are Christians
without Fear or Anxiety._

[Sidenote: Clem. Alex.] _Clemens Alexandrinus_ saith, _Apol. 2.
Strom. Lib. 1_. That _this Wisdom or Philosophy was necessary to the
_Gentiles_, and was their _School-master_ to lead them unto Christ, by
which of old the Greeks were justified._

[Sidenote: Augustin. _de Civ. Dei._] _Nor do I think_, saith
_Augustine_, in his Book of the _City of God_, Lib. 18. Cap. 47. _that
the _Jews_ dare affirm that none belonged unto God but the_ Israelites.
[Sidenote: Lud. Vives.] Upon which Place _Ludovicus Vives_ saith, That
_thus the _Gentiles_, not having a Law, were a Law unto themselves; and
the Light of so living is the Gift of God, and proceeds from the Son;
of whom it is written, that he_ enlighteneth every Man that cometh into
the World.

[Sidenote: _The _Platonists_ saw the Word in the Beginning; which was
Light._] _Augustine_ also testifies in his Confessions, _Lib. 1. Cap.
9_. That _he had read in the Writings of the _Platonists_, though not
in the very same Words, yet that which by many and multiplied Reasons
did persuade, that in the Beginning was the Word, and the Word was
with God; this was in the Beginning with God, by which all Things were
made, and without which nothing was made that was made: In him was
Life, and the Life was the Light of Men: And the Light shined in the
Darkness, and the Darkness did not comprehend it. And albeit the Soul
gives Testimony concerning the Light, yet it is not the _Light_, but
the _Word of God_; for GOD is the true LIGHT, which enlighteneth every
Man that cometh into the World_; and so repeats to Ver. 14. of _John_
i. adding, _These Things have I there read_.

[Sidenote: Hai Eben Yokdan.] Yea, there is a Book translated out of
the _Arabick_, which gives an Account of one _Hai Eben Yokdan_; who
living in an Island alone, without Converse of Man, attained to such
a profound Knowledge of God, as to have immediate Converse with him,
and to affirm, _That the best and most certain Knowledge of God is not
that which is attained by Premises premised, and Conclusions deduced_;
[Sidenote: _The _Supreme Intellect_ enjoyed by the Mind of Men._]
_but that which is enjoyed by Conjunction of the Mind of Man with the
Supreme Intellect, after the Mind is purified from its Corruptions, and
is separated from all bodily Images, and is gathered into a profound

§. XXVIII. Seeing then it is by this inward Gift, Grace, and Light,
that both those that have the Gospel preached unto them, come to have
Jesus brought forth _in_ them, and to have the saving and sanctified
Use of all outward Helps and Advantages; and also by this same Light
that all may come to be saved; and that God calls, invites, and strives
with all, in a Day, and saveth many, to whom he hath not seen meet
to convey this outward Knowledge; [Sidenote: _The Day of the Lord
proclaimed._] therefore we, having the Experience of the inward and
powerful Work of this Light in our Hearts, even _Jesus_ revealed _in_
us, cannot cease to proclaim the Day of the Lord that is arisen in
it, crying out with the Woman of _Samaria_; _Come and see one that
hath told me all that ever I have done; Is not this the Christ?_ That
others may come and feel the same _in_ themselves, and may know, that
that little small Thing that reproves them in their Hearts, however
they have despised and neglected it, is nothing less than the Gospel
preached _in_ them; _Christ_, the _Wisdom_ and _Power of God_, being
_in_ and _by_ that Seed seeking to save their Souls.

Of this _Light_ therefore _Augustine_ speaks in his _Confessions_,
Lib. 11. Cap. 9. _In this Beginning, O God! thou madest the Heavens
and the Earth, in thy Word, in thy Son, in thy Virtue, in thy Wisdom,
wonderfully saying, and wonderfully doing. Who shall comprehend it? Who
shall declare it_? [Sidenote: Augustine _trembled at the In-shinings
of the Light unto him, and why_?] _What is that which shineth in unto
me, and smites my Heart without Hurt, at which I both tremble, and
am inflamed? I tremble, in so far as I am unlike unto it; and I am
inflamed in so far as I am like unto it: It is Wisdom, Wisdom which
shineth in unto me, and dispelleth my Cloud, which had again covered
me, after I was departed from it, with Darkness and the Heap of my
Punishments._ And again he saith, Lib. 10. Cap. 27. _It is too late
that I have loved thee, O thou Beautifulness, so ancient and so new!
Late have I loved thee, and behold thou wast within, and I was without,
and there was seeking thee! Thou didst call, thou didst cry, thou didst
break my Deafness, thou glancedst, thou didst shine, thou chasedst away
my Darkness._

[Sidenote: Buchanan _testifying to the Light._] Of this also our
Countryman _George Buchanan_ speaketh thus in his Book _De Jure regni
apud Scotos_: _Truly I understand no other Thing at present than that
_Light_ which is divinely infused into our Souls: For when God formed
Man, he not only gave him Eyes to his Body, by which he might shun
those Things that are hurtful to him, and follow those Things that are
profitable; but also hath set before his Mind as it were a certain
Light, by which he may discern Things that are vile from Things that
are honest. Some call this Power _Nature_, others the _Law of Nature_;
I truly judge it to be divine, and am persuaded that Nature and Wisdom
never say different Things. Moreover God hath given us a Compend of the
Law, which in few Words comprehends the Whole; to wit, that we should
love him from our Hearts, and our Neighbours as ourselves. And of this
Law all the Books of the holy Scriptures, which pertain to the forming
of Manners, contain no other but an Explication._

[Sidenote: Jew _and _Gentile, Scythian_ and _Barbarian_, Partakers
of the Salvation of Christ._] This is that universal evangelical
Principle, in and by which this Salvation of Christ is exhibited to
_all_ Men, both _Jew_ and _Gentile_, _Scythian_ and _Barbarian_, of
whatsoever Country or Kindred he be: And therefore God hath raised up
unto himself, in this our Age, faithful Witnesses and Evangelists to
preach again his _everlasting Gospel_, and to direct _all_, as well the
high Professors, who boast of the _Law_ and the _Scriptures_, and the
_outward Knowledge of Christ_, as the _Infidels_ and _Heathens_ that
know not him that Way, that they may all come to mind the Light _in_
them, and know Christ _in_ them, _the just one_, [Greek: ton Dichaion:
τον Δικαιον], _whom they have so long killed, and made merry over, and
he hath not resisted_, James v. 6. and give up their Sins, Iniquities,
false Faith, Professions, and outside Righteousness, to be crucified by
the Power of his Cross in them, so as they may know _Christ within_ to
be the _Hope of Glory_, and may come to walk in his Light and be saved,
who is that _true Light that enlighteneth every Man that cometh into
the World_.



_As many as resist not this _Light_, but receive the same, it becomes
    in them an holy, pure, and spiritual Birth, bringing forth
    Holiness, Righteousness, Purity, and all those other blessed Fruits
    which are acceptable to _God_: By which holy Birth, to wit, _Jesus
    Christ formed within us_, and working his Works in us, as we are
    sanctified, so are we justified in the Sight of God, according to
    the Apostle’s Words; _But ye are washed, but ye are sanctified,
    but ye are justified in the Name of the Lord Jesus, and by the
    Spirit of our God, 1_ Cor. _vi. 11._ Therefore it is not by our
    Works wrought in our Will, nor yet by good Works considered as
    of themselves; but by _Christ_, who is both the _Gift_ and the
    _Giver_, and the Cause producing the Effects in us; who, as he hath
    reconciled us while we were Enemies, doth also in his Wisdom save
    us and justify us after this Manner, as saith the same Apostle
    elsewhere_; According to his Mercy he saved us, by the Washing of
    Regeneration, and the Renewing of the Holy Ghost, _Tit._ iii. 5.

§. I. The _Doctrine of Justification_ comes well in Order after the
discussing of the Extent of Christ’s Death, and of the Grace thereby
communicated, some of the sharpest Contests concerning this having
from thence their Rise. Many are the Disputes among those called
_Christians_ concerning this Point; and indeed, if all were truly
minding that which justifieth, there would be less Noise about the
_Notions of Justification_. I shall briefly review this Controversy
as it stands among others, and as I have often seriously observed it;
then in short state the Controversy as to us, and open our Sense and
Judgment of it; and _lastly_ prove it, if the Lord will, by some
Scripture Testimonies, and the certain Experience of all that ever were
truly justified.

§. II. [Sidenote: Observat. _The Method of Justification taken by the
Church of_ Rome.] That this _Doctrine of Justification_, hath been and
is greatly vitiated in the Church of _Rome_, is not by us questioned;
though our Adversaries, who for want of better Arguments do often
make Lies their Refuge, have not spared in this Respect to stigmatize
us with Popery, but how untruly will hereafter appear. For to speak
little of their _Meritum ex condigno_, which was no Doubt a very
common Doctrine of the _Romish Church_, especially before _Luther_,
though most of their modern Writers, especially in their Controversies
with Protestants, do partly deny it, partly qualify it, and seem to
state the Matter only as if they were Propagators and Pleaders for
good Works by the others denied; yet if we look to the Effects of
this Doctrine among them, as they appear in the Generality of their
Church Members, not in Things disapproved, but highly approved and
commended by their Father the _Pope_ and all his _Clients_, as the
most beneficial Casualty of all his Revenue, [Sidenote: _The _Pope_’s
Doctrine of _Merits_, the most beneficial of all his _Revenue.] we
shall find that _Luther_ did not without great Ground oppose himself
to them in this Matter: And if he had not run himself into another
Extreme, of which hereafter, his Work would have stood the better.
For in this, as in most other Things, he is more to be commended for
what he pulled down of _Babylon_, than for what he built of his own.
Whatever then the _Papists_ may pretend, or even some good Men among
them may have thought, Experience sheweth, and it is more than manifest
by the universal and approved Practice of their People, that they place
not their _Justification_ so much in Works that are truly and morally
good, and in the being truly renewed and sanctified in the Mind, as in
such Things as are either nor Good nor Evil, or may truly be called
Evil, and can no otherwise be reckoned Good than because the _Pope_
pleases to call them so. [Sidenote: Papists _Justification depends
upon the _Pope_’s Bulls._] So that if the Matter be well sifted, it
will be found, that the greatest Part of their _Justification_ depends
upon the Authority of his _Bulls_, and not upon the Power, Virtue, and
Grace of Christ revealed in the Heart, and renewing of it, as will
appear. [Sidenote: Proof 1. _Their Sacraments._] _First_, From their
Principle concerning their _Sacraments_, which they say confer Grace
_ex opere operato_. So that if a Man partake but of them, he thereby
obtains Remission of Sin, though he remains as he was; the Virtue of
the _Sacraments_ making up the Want that is in the Man. So that this
Act of Submission and Faith to the Laws of the Church, and not any
real inward Change, is that which justifieth him. As for Example;
[Sidenote: _Papists Penance._] if a Man make use of the _Sacrament_,
as they call it, _of Penance_, so as to tell over his Sins to a
Priest, though he have not true _Contrition_, which the Lord hath made
absolutely necessary for penitent Sinners, but only _Attrition_, a
Figment of their own, that is, if he be sorry he hath sinned, not out
of any Love to God, or his Law which he hath transgressed, but for
fear of Punishment, yet doth the Virtue of the _Sacrament_, as they
affirm, procure to him Remission of Sins; so that being absolved by
the Priest, he stands accepted and justified in the Sight of God. This
Man’s Justification then proceedeth not from his being truly penitent,
and in any Measure inwardly changed and renewed by the working of God’s
Grace in his Heart, but merely from the Virtue of the _Sacrament_, and
Authority of the Priest, who hath pronounced him _absolved_; so that
his Justification is from somewhat without him, and not within him.

[Sidenote: Proof 2. _Papist Indulgences._] _Secondly_, This will
yet more appear in the Matter of _Indulgences_, where Remission of
all Sins, not only past but for Years to come, is annexed to the
visiting such and such _Churches_ and _Reliques_, saying such and
such _Prayers_; so that the Person that so doth is presently cleared
from the Guilt of his Sin, and justified and accepted in the Sight
of God. As for Example: He that in the great _Jubilee_ will go to
_Rome_, and present himself before the Gate of _Peter_ and _Paul_, and
there receive the _Pope’s Blessing_; or he that will go a Pilgrimage
to _James_’s Sepulchre in _Spain_, or to _Mary_ of _Loreto_, is upon
the Performance of those Things promised Forgiveness of Sins. Now
if we ask them the Reason how such Things as are not morally good
in themselves come to have Virtue? They have no other Answer but
_because of the Church and Pope’s Authority_, who being the great
Treasurer of the Magazine of _Christ’s Merits_, lets them out upon
such and such Conditions. [Sidenote: _Papists Mass, what it is?_] Thus
also the Invention of saying _Mass_ is made a chief Instrument of
_Justification_; for in it they pretend to offer _Christ_ daily to the
Father a _propitiatory Sacrifice_ for the Sins of the Living and Dead:
So that a Man for Money can procure _Christ_ thus to be offered for him
when he pleases; by which Offering he is said to obtain Remission of
Sins, and to stand justified in the Sight of God. From all which, and
much more of this Nature which might be mentioned, it doth appear, that
the _Papists_ place their Justification, not so much in any Work of
Holiness really brought forth in them, and real forsaking of Iniquity,
as in the mere Performance of some Ceremonies, and a blind Belief
which their Teachers have begotten in them, that the _Church_ and the
_Pope_ having the absolute Dispensation of the _Merits of Christ_,
have Power to make these Merits effectual for the Remission of Sins,
and Justification of such as will perform those Ceremonies. This is
the true and real Method of _Justification_ taken by the Generality of
the Church of _Rome_, and highly commended by their publick Preachers,
especially the _Monks_, in their Sermons to the People, of which I
myself have been an Ear and an Eye-witness; however some of their
modern Writers have laboured to qualify it in their Controversies.
[Sidenote: Luther _and the _Protestants_ opposing the Pope’s Doctrine
of Works, fell into the other Extreme, of no good Works necessary to
Justification._] This Doctrine _Luther_ and the _Protestants_ then had
good Reason to deny and oppose; though many of them ran into another
Extreme, so as to deny _good Works to be necessary to Justification_,
and to preach up _not only Remission of Sins, but Justification by
Faith alone, without all Works, however good_. So that Men do not
obtain their _Justification_ according as they are inwardly sanctified
and renewed, but are justified merely by believing that _Christ died
for them_; and so some may be perfectly justified, though they be lying
in gross Wickedness; as appears by the Example of _David_, who they say
was fully and perfectly justified while he was lying in the gross Sins
of _Murder_ and _Adultery_. As then the _Protestants_ have sufficient
Ground to quarrel and confute the _Papists_ concerning those many
Abuses in the Matter of _Justification_, shewing how the _Doctrine of
Christ_ is thereby vitiated and overturned, and the _Word at God_ made
void by many and useless Traditions, the _Law of God_ neglected, while
foolish and needless _Ceremonies_ are prized and followed, through a
false Opinion of being justified by the Performance of them; and the
_Merits_ and _Sufferings_ of Christ, which is the only _Sacrifice_
appointed of God for Remission of Sins, derogated from, by the setting
up of a daily _Sacrifice_ never appointed by God, and chiefly devised
out of Covetousness to get Money by; [Sidenote: _Papists Device to
get Money._] so the _Protestants_ on the other Hand, by not rightly
establishing and holding forth the _Doctrine_ of _Justification_
according as it is delivered in the holy Scriptures, have opened a Door
for the _Papists_ to accuse them, as if they were Neglecters of good
Works, Enemies to Mortification and Holiness, such as esteem themselves
justified while lying in great Sins: By which Kind of Accusations,
for which too great Ground hath been given out of the Writings of
some _rigid Protestants_, the Reformation hath been greatly defamed
and hindered, and the Souls of many insnared. Whereas, whoever will
narrowly look into the Matter, may observe these Debates to be more _in
Specie_ than _in Genere_, seeing both do upon the Matter _land in one_;
and like two Men in a Circle, who though they go sundry Ways, yet meet
at last; in the same Center.

[Sidenote: _Papists Belief of Justification meets in the same Center
with the--_] For the _Papists_ say, _They obtain Remission of Sins, and
are justified by the Merits of Christ, as the same are applied unto
them in the Use of the Sacraments of the Church, and are dispensed in
the Performance of such and such Ceremonies, Pilgrimages, Prayers, and
Performances, though there be not any inward renewing of the Mind,
nor knowing of Christ inwardly formed; yet they are remitted and made
righteous _ex opere operato_, because of the Power and Authority
accompanying the Sacraments and the Dispensers of them_.

[Sidenote:--_Protestants Belief. So saith the _Westminster Confession_
of _Faith_. Chap. 11. Sect. 1._] The _Protestants_ say, _That they
obtain Remission of Sins, and stand justified in the Sight of God by
Virtue of the _Merits_ and _Sufferings_ of Christ, not by infusing
Righteousness into them, but by pardoning their Sins, and by accounting
and accepting their Persons as righteous, they resting on him and his
Righteousness by_ Faith; _which_ Faith, _the Act of believing, is not
imputed unto them for Righteousness_.

So the _Justification_ of neither here is placed in any inward Renewing
of the Mind, or by Virtue of any spiritual Birth, or Formation of
Christ in them; but only by a bare Application of the Death and
Sufferings of Christ outwardly performed for them: Whereof the one lays
hold on a Faith resting upon them, and hoping to be justified by them
alone; the other by the saying of some outward Prayers and Ceremonies,
which they judge makes the Death of Christ effectual unto them. I
except here, being unwilling to wrong any, what Things have been
said as to the Necessity of inward Holiness, either by some _modern
Papists_, or some _modern Protestants_, who, in so far as they have
laboured after a Midst betwixt these two Extremes, have come near to
the Truth, as by some Citations out of them hereafter to be mentioned
will appear: Though this Doctrine hath not since the Apostasy, so far
as ever I could observe, been so distinctly and evidently held forth
according to the Scripture’s Testimony, as it hath pleased God to
reveal it and preach it forth in this Day, by the Witnesses of his
Truth whom he hath raised to that End; which _Doctrine_, though it be
briefly held forth and comprehended in the Thesis itself, [Sidenote:
_State of the Controversy._] yet I shall a little more fully explain,
and shew the State of the Controversy as it stands betwixt us and those
that now oppose us.

§. III. [Sidenote: Expl. 1.] _First_ then, as by the Explanation of the
former Thesis appears, we renounce all natural Power and Ability in
ourselves, in order to bring us out of our lost and fallen Condition
and first Nature; and confess, that as of ourselves we are able to do
nothing that is good, so neither can we procure Remission of Sins or
Justification by any Act of our own, so as to merit it, or draw it as
a Debt from God due unto us; [Sidenote: _Justification springs _of_
and _from_ the Love of God._] but we acknowledge all to be _of_ and
_from_ his _Love_, which is the original and fundamental Cause of our

[Sidenote: Expl. 2.] [Sidenote: _Christ giving himself a Sacrifice
for us._] _Secondly_, God manifested this _Love_ towards us, in the
sending of his beloved Son the Lord _Jesus Christ_ into the World,
who gave himself for us an _Offering_ and a _Sacrifice_ to God, for a
_sweet-smelling Savour_; and having made Peace through the Blood of his
_Cross_, that he might reconcile us unto himself, and by the Eternal
Spirit offered himself without Spot unto God, and suffered for our
Sins, the _Just_ for the _Unjust_, that he might bring us unto God.

[Sidenote: Expl. 3.] _Thirdly_ then, Forasmuch as all Men who have come
to Man’s Estate (the Man _Jesus_ only excepted) have sinned, therefore
all have Need of this Saviour, to remove the Wrath of God from them
due to their Offences; in this Respect he is truly said to _have borne
the Iniquities of us all in his Body on the Tree_, and therefore is
the _only Mediator_, having qualified the Wrath of God towards us;
so that our former Sins stand not in our Way, being by Virtue of his
most satisfactory Sacrifice removed and pardoned. [Sidenote: _To
Remission of Sins._] Neither do we think that Remission of Sins is
to be expected, sought, or obtained any other Way, or by any Works
or Sacrifice whatsoever; though, as has been said formerly, they may
come to partake of this Remission that are ignorant of the History.
[Sidenote: _The only Mediator betwixt God and Man._] So then Christ
by his Death and Sufferings hath reconciled us to God, even while we
are Enemies; that is, he offers Reconciliation unto us; we are put
into a Capacity of being reconciled; God is willing to forgive us our
Iniquities, and to accept us, as is well expressed by the Apostle, 2
_Cor._ v. 19. _God was in Christ, reconciling the World unto himself,
not imputing their Trespasses unto them, and hath put in us the Word
of Reconciliation_. And therefore the Apostle, in the next Verses,
intreats them in _Christ’s Stead to be reconciled to God_; intimating
that the Wrath of God being removed by the Obedience of _Christ Jesus_,
he is willing to be reconciled unto them, and ready to remit the Sins
that are past, if they repent.

[Sidenote: _A twofold Redemption._] We consider then our Redemption
in a twofold Respect or State, both which in their own Nature are
perfect, though in their Application to us the one is not, nor can be,
without Respect to the other.

[Sidenote: I. _The Redemption of Christ without us._] The First is
the Redemption performed and accomplished by _Christ for us_ in his
crucified Body without us: The other is the Redemption wrought by
_Christ in us_, which no less properly is called and accounted a
Redemption than the former. The first then is that whereby a Man, as
he stands in the Fall, is put into a Capacity of Salvation, and hath
conveyed unto him a Measure of that Power, Virtue, Spirit, Life, and
Grace that was in _Christ Jesus_, which, as the free Gift of God,
is able to counter-balance, overcome, and root out the evil Seed,
wherewith we are naturally, as in the Fall, leavened.

[Sidenote: II. _The Redemption wrought by Christ in us._] The Second
is that whereby we witness and know this pure and perfect Redemption
_in ourselves_, purifying, cleansing, and redeeming us from the Power
of Corruption, and bringing us into Unity, Favour, and Friendship with
God. By the first of these two, we that were lost in _Adam_, plunged
into the bitter and corrupt Seed, unable of ourselves to do any good
Thing, but naturally joined and united to Evil, forward and propense to
all Iniquity, Servants and Slaves to the Power and Spirit of Darkness,
are, notwithstanding all this, so far reconciled to God by the Death of
his Son, while Enemies, that we are put into a Capacity of Salvation,
having the glad Tidings of the Gospel of Peace offered unto us, and God
is reconciled unto us in Christ, calls and invites us to himself, in
which Respect we understand these Scriptures; [70]_He slew the Enmity
in himself. He loved us first; seeing us in our Blood, he said unto us,
Live; he who did not sin his own self, bare our Sins in his own Body on
the Tree; and he died for our Sin, the Just for the Unjust._

[70] Eph. 2. 15. 1 John 4. 10. Ezek. 16. 6. 1 Pet. 2. 22, 24. & 3. 18.

By the Second, we witness this Capacity brought into Act, whereby
receiving and not resisting the Purchase of his Death, to wit, the
Light, Spirit, and Grace of Christ revealed in us, we witness and
possess a real, true, and inward Redemption from the Power and
Prevalency of Sin, and so come to be truly and really redeemed,
justified, and made righteous, and to a sensible Union and Friendship
with God.[71] Thus _he died for us, that he might redeem us from all
Iniquity_; and thus _we know him and the Power of his Resurrection,
and the Fellowship of his Sufferings, being made conformable to his
Death_. This last follows the first in Order, and is a Consequence of
it, proceeding from it, as an _Effect_ from its _Cause_: So as none
could have enjoyed the last, without the first had been, such being
the Will of God; so also can none now partake of the first, but as
he witnesseth the last. Wherefore as to us, they are both Causes of
our Justification; the first the _procuring Efficient_, the other the
_formal Cause_.

[71] Tit. 2. 14. Phil. 3. 10.

[Sidenote: Expl. 4.] _Fourthly_, We understand not by this
_Justification by Christ_ barely the _good Works even wrought by the
Spirit of Christ_; for they, as _Protestants_ truly affirm, are rather
an Effect of _Justification_ than the Cause of it; [Sidenote: _The
Formation of Christ in us begets good Works._] but we understand the
_Formation of Christ in us, Christ born and brought forth in us_, from
which good Works as naturally proceed as Fruit from a fruitful Tree. It
is this _inward Birth in us, bringing forth Righteousness and Holiness
in us, that doth justify us_; which having removed and done away the
contrary Nature and Spirit that did bear Rule and bring Condemnation,
now is in Dominion over all _in_ our Hearts. Those then that come to
know _Christ_ thus formed in them, do enjoy him wholly and undivided,
who is _the LORD our RIGHTEOUSNESS_, Jer. xxiii. 6. This is to be
clothed with _Christ_, and to have put him on, whom God therefore
truly accounteth righteous and just. This is so far from being the
Doctrine of _Papists_, that as the Generality of them do not understand
it, so the Learned among them oppose it, and dispute against it, and
particularly _Bellarmine_. Thus then, as I may say, the formal Cause
of Justification is not the Works, to speak properly, they being but
an Effect of it; but this inward Birth, this _Jesus_ brought forth in
the Heart, who is the well-beloved, whom the Father cannot but accept,
and all those who thus are sprinkled with the _Blood of Jesus_, and
washed with it. By this also comes that Communication of the Goods of
_Christ_ unto us, _by which we come to be made Partakers of the divine
Nature_, as faith _Peter_, 2 _Pet._ i. 4. and are made one with him,
as the Branches with the Vine, and have a Title and Right to what
he hath done and suffered for us; [Sidenote: _Christ’s Obedience,
Righteousness, Death and Sufferings are ours._] so that his Obedience
becomes ours, his Righteousness ours, his Death and Sufferings ours.
And by this Nearness we come to have a Sense of his Sufferings, and to
suffer with his Seed, that yet lies pressed and crucified in the Hearts
of the Ungodly, and so travail with it, and for its Redemption, and
for the Repentance of those Souls that in it are crucifying as yet the
_Lord of Glory_. Even as the Apostle _Paul_, _who by his Sufferings _is
said to_ fill up that which is behind of the Afflictions of Christ for
his Body, which is the Church_. Though this be a Mystery sealed up from
all the wise Men that are yet ignorant of this Seed in themselves, and
oppose it, nevertheless some _Protestants_ speak of this justification
by _Christ_ inwardly put on, as shall hereafter be recited in its Place.

[Sidenote: Expl. 5.] _Lastly_, Though we place Remission of Sins in
the _Righteousness and Obedience of Christ performed by him in the
Flesh_, as to what pertains to the remote procuring Cause, and that we
hold ourselves _formally justified by Christ Jesus formed and brought
forth in us_, yet can we not, as some _Protestants_ have unwarily
done, _exclude_ Works from _Justification_. [Sidenote: _Good Works are
not excluded Justification._] For though properly we be not justified
_for them_, yet are we justified _in them_; and they are necessary,
even as _Causa sine quâ non_, i. e. _the Cause, without which none
are justified_. For the denying of this, as it is contrary to the
Scripture’s Testimony, so it hath brought a great Scandal to the
Protestant Religion, opened the Mouths of _Papists_, and made many too
secure, while they have believed to be justified without good Works.
Moreover, though it be not so safe to say _they are meritorious_, yet
seeing they are rewarded, many of those called the _Fathers_ have not
spared to use the Word [_Merit_] which some of us have perhaps also
done in a qualified Sense, but no-ways to infer the _Popish Abuses_
above-mentioned. And _lastly_, if we had that Notion of _good Works_
which most _Protestants_ have, we could freely agree to make them not
only not necessary, but reject them as hurtful, viz. _That the best
Works even of the Saints are defiled and polluted._ For though we judge
so of the best Works performed by Man, endeavouring a Conformity to the
outward Law by his own Strength, and in his own Will, yet we believe
that such _Works_ as naturally proceed from this spiritual Birth and
Formation of Christ in us are _pure_ and _holy_, even as the _Root_
from which they come; and therefore God accepts them, justifies us in
them, and rewards us for them of his own _free Grace_. The State of the
Controversy being thus laid down, these following _Positions_ do from
hence arise in the next Place to be proved.

§. IV. [Sidenote: Posit. 1.] First, _That the Obedience, Sufferings,
and Death of Christ is that by which the Soul obtains Remission of
Sins, and is the procuring Cause of that Grace, by whose inward
Workings _Christ_ comes to be formed inwardly, and the Soul to be made
conformable unto him, and so just and justified._ And that therefore,
in respect of this Capacity and Offer of Grace, _God_ is said to be
_reconciled_; not as if he were actually _reconciled_, or did actually
justify, or account any just, so long as they remain in their Sins
really impure and unjust.

[Sidenote: Posit. 2.] Secondly, _That it is by this inward Birth of
Christ in Man that Man is made just, and therefore so accounted by
God_: Wherefore, to be plain, we are thereby, and not till that be
brought forth in us, _formally_, if we must use that Word, _justified_
in the Sight of God; because _Justification_ is both more properly
and frequently in Scripture taken in its proper Signification for
making one just, and not reputing one merely such, and is all one with

[Sidenote: Posit. 3.] _Thirdly_, That since _good Works_ as naturally
follow from this Birth as Heat from Fire, therefore are they of
_absolute Necessity to Justification_, as _Causa sine quâ non_,
[Sidenote: _Good Works are _Causa sine quâ non--of_ Justification._]
i. e. though not as the Cause _for which_, yet as that _in which_ we
are, and without which we cannot be justified. And though they be not
_meritorious_, and draw no Debt upon God, yet he cannot but accept and
reward them: For it is contrary to his Nature to deny his own, since
they may be perfect in their Kind, as proceeding from a pure holy Birth
and Root. Wherefore their Judgment is false and against the Truth that
say, _That the holiest Works of the Saints are defiled and sinful in
the Sight of God_: For these _good Works_ are not the Works of the Law,
excluded by the Apostle from Justification.

§. V. [Sidenote: Posit. 1.] As to the first, I prove it from _Rom._
iii. 25. _Whom God hath set forth to be a Propitiation through Faith
in his Blood, to declare his Righteousness for the Remission of Sins
that are past, through the Forbearance of God_. [Sidenote: Proof I.
_The Efficacy of Christ’s Death to redeem Man out of Evil._] Here
the Apostle holds forth the Extent and Efficacy of _Christ’s Death_,
shewing that thereby, and by Faith therein, Remission of Sins that
are past is obtained, as being that wherein the Forbearance of God is
exercised towards Mankind. So that though Men for the Sins they daily
commit deserve eternal Death, and that the Wrath of God should lay
hold upon them; yet, by Virtue of that most _satisfactory Sacrifice of
Christ Jesus_, the Grace and Seed of God moves in Love towards them,
during the Day of their Visitation; yet not so as not to strike against
the Evil, for that must be burnt up and destroyed, but to redeem Man
out of the Evil.

[Sidenote: Proof II.] _Secondly_, If God were perfectly reconciled
with Men, and did esteem them just while they are actually unjust, and
do continue in their Sins, then should God have no Controversy with
them[72]; how comes he then so often to complain, and to expostulate
so much throughout the whole Scripture with such as our Adversaries
confess to be justified, telling them, _That their Sins separate
betwixt him and them_? Isa. lix. 2. For where there is a perfect and
full Reconciliation, there is no Separation. Yea, from this Doctrine it
necessarily follows, either that such for whom _Christ_ died, and whom
he hath reconciled, never sin, or that when they do so, they are still
reconciled, and their Sins make not the least Separation from God; yea,
that they are justified in their Sins. From whence also would follow
this abominable Consequence, that the good Works and greatest Sins of
such are alike in the Sight of God, seeing neither the one serves
to justify them, nor the other to break their Reconciliation, which
occasions great Security, and opens a Door to every lewd Practice.

[72] I do not only speak concerning Men before _Conversion_, who
afterwards are converted, whom yet some of our Antagonists, called
_Antinomians_, do aver were justified from the Beginning; but also
touching those who according to the common Opinion of _Protestants_
have been converted; whom albeit they confess they persist always in
some _Misdeeds_, and sometimes in _heinous Sins_, as is manifest in
_David_’s Adultery and Murder, yet they assert to be perfectly and
wholly justified.

[Sidenote: Proof III.] _Thirdly_, This would make void the whole
practical Doctrine of the Gospel, and make Faith itself needless. For
if Faith and Repentance, and the other Conditions called for throughout
the Gospel, be a Qualification upon our Part necessary to be performed,
then, before this be performed by us, we are either fully reconciled to
God, or but in a Capacity of being reconciled to God, he being ready
to reconcile and justify us as these Conditions are performed; which
latter, if granted, is according to the Truth we profess. And if we
are already perfectly reconciled and justified before these Conditions
are performed (which Conditions are of that Nature that they cannot be
performed at one Time, but are to be done all one’s Life-time) then
can they not be said to be absolutely needful; which is contrary to
the very express Testimony of Scripture, which is acknowledged by all
Christians: [73]_For without Faith it is impossible to please God.
They that believe not are condemned already, because they believe
not in the only begotten Son of God. Except ye repent, ye cannot be
saved: For if ye live after the Flesh, ye shall die_. And of those that
were converted; [74]_I will remove your Candlestick from you, unless
ye repent_. Should I mention all the Scriptures that positively and
evidently prove this, I might transcribe much of all the doctrinal
Part of the _Bible_. For since Christ said, _It is finished_, and did
_finish his Work_ sixteen hundred Years ago and upwards; [Sidenote:
_A Door of Mercy opened by Christ, upon Repentance._] if he so fully
perfected Redemption then, and did actually reconcile every one that is
to be saved, not simply opening a Door of Mercy for them, offering the
Sacrifice of his Body, by which they may obtain Remission of their Sins
when they repent, and communicating unto them a Measure of his Grace,
by which they may see their Sins, and be able to repent; [Sidenote:
_The _Antinomians_ Opinion of Reconciliation and Justification._] but
really making them to be reputed as just, either before they believe,
as say the _Antinomians_, or after they have assented to the Truth of
the History of Christ, or are sprinkled with the Baptism of Water,
while nevertheless they are actually unjust, so that no Part of their
Redemption is to be wrought by him now, as to their _Reconciliation_
and _Justification_; then the whole doctrinal Part of the _Bible_
is useless, and of no Profit: in vain were the Apostles sent forth
to preach Repentance and Remission of Sins; and in vain do all the
Preachers bestow their _Labour_, spend their _Breath_, and give forth
_Writings_; yea, much more in vain do the People spend their Money
which they give them for Preaching; seeing it is all but _Actum agere_,
but a vain and ineffectual Essay, to do that which is already perfectly
done without them.

[73] Heb. 11. 6. John 3. 18. Luke 13. 3. Rom. 8. 13.

[74] Apoc. 2. 5.

[Sidenote: Proof 4.] But _lastly_, To pass by their human Labours,
as not worth the Disputing whether they be needful or not, since (as
we shall hereafter shew) themselves confess the _best_ of them is
_sinful_; this also makes void the present Intercession of Christ for
Men. [Sidenote: _Christ’s daily making Intercession for us._] What
will become of that great Article of Faith, by which we affirm, _That
he sits at the right Hand of God, daily making Intercession for us;
and for which End the Spirit itself maketh Intercession for us with
Groanings which cannot be uttered?_ For Christ maketh not Intercession
for those that are not in a Possibility of Salvation; that is absurd.
Our Adversaries will not admit that he prayed for the World at all; and
to pray for those that are already reconciled, and perfectly justified,
is to no Purpose: To pray for Remission of Sins is yet more needless,
if all be remitted, past, present, and to come. Indeed there is not any
solid solving of this, but by acknowledging according to the _Truth_,
That Christ by his Death removed the Wrath of God, so far as to obtain
Remission of Sins for as many as receive that _Grace_ and _Light_ that
he communicates unto them, and hath purchased for them by his _Blood_;
which, as they believe in, they come to know Remission of Sins past,
and Power to save them from Sin, and to wipe it away, so often as they
may fall into it by Unwatchfulness or Weakness, if, applying themselves
to this Grace, they truly repent; for _to as many as receive him, he
gives Power to become the Sons of God_: So none are _Sons_, none are
_justified_, none _reconciled_, until they thus receive him in that
little _Seed_ in their Hearts: _And Life eternal is offered to those,
who by patient Continuance in Well-doing, seek for Glory, Honour, and
Immortality: For if the righteous Man depart from his Righteousness,
his Righteousness shall be remembered no more_. And therefore on the
other Part, none are longer Sons of God, and justified, than they
patiently continue in Righteousness and Well-doing. And therefore
Christ lives always making Intercession, during the Day of every Man’s
Visitation, that they may be converted; And when Men are in some
Measure converted, he makes Intercession that they may continue and
go on, and not faint, nor go back again. Much more might be said to
confirm this Truth; but I go on to take Notice of the common Objections
against it, which are the Arguments made use of to propagate the
_Errors_ contrary to it.

§. VI. The _first_ and _chief_ is drawn from that Saying of the Apostle
before-mentioned, 2 _Cor._ v. 18, 19. _God hath reconciled us to
himself by Jesus Christ: God was in Christ reconciling the World unto
himself, not imputing their Trespasses unto them._

[Sidenote: Obj. 1.] From hence they seek to infer, _That Christ fully
perfected the Work of Reconciliation while he was on Earth_.

[Sidenote: _Answ._] I answer; If by [_Reconciliation_] be understood
the removing of Wrath, and the Purchase of that Grace by which we may
come to be reconciled, we agree to it; but that that Place speaks no
more, appears from the Place itself: For when the Apostle speaks in
the _perfect Time_, saying, _He hath reconciled us_, he speaks of
himself and the Saints; who having received the Grace of God purchased
by Christ, were through Faith in him actually reconciled. [Sidenote:
_The Difference between _Reconciled_ to Christ, and_ Reconciling.] But
as to the _World_, he saith [_reconciling_] not [_reconciled_]; which
_Reconciling_, though it denotes a Time somewhat past, yet it is by
the _imperfect Time_, denoting that the Thing begun was not perfected.
For this Work Christ began towards all in the Days of his Flesh, yea,
and long before; for _He was the Mediator from the Beginning, and
the Lamb slain from the Foundation of the World_: But in his Flesh,
after he had perfectly _fulfilled the Law_, and the _Righteousness_
thereof, had rent the _Veil_, and made Way for the more clear and
universal Revelation of the Gospel to all, both _Jew_ and _Gentile_;
he _gave up himself a most satisfactory Sacrifice for Sin_; which
becomes effectual to as many as receive him in his inward Appearance,
in his _Light_ in the Heart. Again, this very Place sheweth that no
other Reconciliation is intended, but the Opening of a Door of Mercy
upon God’s Part, and a Removing of Wrath for Sins that are past;
so as Men; notwithstanding their Sins, are stated in a Capacity of
Salvation: For the Apostle, in the following Verse, saith, _Now then
we are Ambassadors for Christ, as though God did beseech you by us;
we pray you in Christ’s Stead be ye reconciled to God_. For if their
_Reconciliation_ had already been perfectly accomplished, what need any
Intreating then to be reconciled? _Ambassadors_ are not sent after a
_Peace_ already perfected, and Reconciliation made, to intreat for a
Reconciliation; for that implies a manifest Contradiction.

[Sidenote: Obj. 2.] _Secondly_, They object, _Ver._ 21st of the same
Chapter, _For he hath made him to be Sin for us, who knew no Sin,
that we might be made the Righteousness of God in him_. From whence
they argue, _That as our Sin is imputed to Christ, who had no Sin; so
Christ’s Righteousness is imputed to us, without our being righteous_.

[Sidenote: _Answ._] But this Interpretation is easily rejected; for
though _Christ bare our Sins, _and_ suffered for us, _and was among
Men_ accounted a Sinner, _and_ numbered among Transgressors_; yet that
God reputed him a Sinner, is no where proved. For it is said, [75]_He
was found before him holy, harmless, and undefiled, neither was there
found any Guile in his Mouth_. That we deserved these Things, and
much more for our Sins, which he endured in Obedience to the Father;
and according to his Counsel, is true; but that ever reputed him a
_Sinner_, is denied: [Sidenote: _Men’s imputed Righteousness solidly
Refuted._] Neither did he ever die, that _we_ should be reputed
righteous, though no more really such than _he_ was a Sinner, as
hereafter appears. For indeed, if this Argument hold, it might be
stretched to that Length, as to become very pleasing to wicked Men that
love to abide in their Sins: For if we be made _righteous, as Christ
was made a Sinner, merely by Imputation; then as there was no Sin, not
in the least in Christ, _so it would follow_, that there needed no
more Righteousness, no more Holiness, no more inward Sanctification in
us, than there was Sin in him_. So then, by his [_being made Sin for
us_] must be understood his Suffering for our Sins, that we might be
made Partakers of the Grace purchased by him; by the Workings whereof
we are made the Righteousness of God in him. For that the Apostle
understood here a being made really righteous, and not merely a being
reputed such, appears by what follows, seeing in _Ver._ 14, 15, 16.
of the following Chapter, he argues largely against any supposed
_Agreement of Light and Darkness_, _Righteousness and Unrighteousness_;
which must needs be admitted, if Men are to be reckoned ingrafted in
Christ, and real Members of him, merely by an imputative Righteousness,
wholly without them, while they themselves are actually unrighteous.
And indeed it may be thought strange, how some Men have made this
so fundamental an Article of their Faith, which is so contrary to
the whole Strain of the Gospel: A Thing which Christ in none of all
his _Sermons_ and _gracious Speeches_ ever willed any to rely upon;
always recommending to us Works, as instrumental in our justification.
And the more it is to be admired at, because that Sentence or Term
(so frequently in their Mouths, and so often pressed by them, as
the very _Basis_ of their Hope and Confidence) to wit, [Sidenote:
_Christ’s imputed Righteousness not found in all the_ Bible.] _The
imputed Righteousness of Christ_, is not to be found in all the
_Bible_, at least as to my Observation. Thus have I passed through the
first Part, and that the more briefly, because many, who assert this
_Justification_ by bare Imputation, do nevertheless confess, that even
the Elect are not justified until they be converted; that is, not until
this imputative Justification be applied to them by the Spirit.

[75] Heb. 7. 26. 1 Pet. 2. 22.

§. VII. [Sidenote: Posit. 2. _By Christ formed within we are
justified._] I come then to the second Thing proposed by me, which
is; _That it is by this inward Birth, or Christ formed within, that
we are _(so to speak)_ formally justified in the Sight of God_. I
suppose I have said enough already to demonstrate how much we ascribe
to the _Death_ and _Sufferings of Christ_, as that whereby Satisfaction
is made to the Justice of God, Remission of Sins obtained, and this
_Grace_ and _Seed_ purchased, by and from which this Birth proceeds.
The Thing now to be proved is, _That by Christ Jesus formed in us, we
are justified, or made just_. Let it be marked, I use _Justification_
in this Sense upon this Occasion.

[Sidenote: Proof 1.] _First_ then, I prove this by that of the Apostle
_Paul_, 1 Cor. vi. 11. [Sidenote: Justified, i. e. _being made Just
really, not by Imputation_.] _And such were some of you; but ye are
washed, but ye are sanctified, but ye are justified in the Name of the
Lord Jesus, and by the Spirit of our God_. First, This [_justified_]
here understood, must needs be _a being really made just_, and not
_a being merely imputed such_; else [_sanctified_] and [_washed_]
might be reputed a being _esteemed_ so, and not a being _really_ so;
and then it quite overturns the whole Intent of the Context. For the
Apostle shewing them in the preceding _Verses_, how the _Unrighteous
cannot inherit the Kingdom of God_, and descending to the several
_Species of Wickedness_, subsumes, _That they were sometimes such, but
now are not any more such_. Wherefore, as they are now _washed_ and
_sanctified_, so are they _justified_: For if this _Justification_ were
not _real_, then it might be alleged that the _Corinthians_ had not
forsaken these Evils; but, though they still continued in them, were
notwithstanding _justified_: Which as in itself it is most absurd, so
it very clearly overturneth the very Import and Intent of the Place;
as if the _Corinthians_ turning _Christians_ had not wrought any real
Change in them, but had only been a Belief of some barren Notions,
which had wrought no Alteration in their Affections, Will, or Manner
of Life. For my own Part, I neither see any Thing, nor could ever yet
hear or read any Thing, that with any Colour of Reason did evince
[_Justified_] in this Place to be understood any other ways than in its
own proper and genuine Interpretation of being made _just_. [Sidenote:
_The Derivation of the Word _Justify_ considered_, &c.] And for the
more clear understanding hereof, let it be considered, that this Word
[_justify_] is derived either from the Substantive _Justice_, or the
Adjective _just_: Both which Words import the _Substantive_, that true
and real _Virtue in the Soul_, as it is in itself; to wit, it signifies
_really_, and not _suppositively_, that excellent Quality expressed
and understood among Men by the Word [_Justice_;] and the Adjective
[_just_] as applied, signifies a Man or Woman who is _just_, that is,
in whom this Quality of _Justice_ is stated: For it would not only be
great Impropriety, but also manifest Falsity, to call a Man _just_;
merely by _Supposition_; especially if he were really _unjust_. Now
this Word [_justify_] formed from _Justice_, or _just_, doth beyond
all Question signify a _making just_; it being nothing else but a
Composition of the Verb _Facio_, and the Adjective _justus_, which is
nothing else than thus, _justifico_, i. e. _justum facio_, I make just,
and [_justified_] of _justus_ and _fio_, as _justus fio_, I become
just, and _justificatus_, i. e. _justus factus_, I am made just. Thus
also is it with Verbs of this Kind, as, _sanctifico_, from _sanctus_,
holy, and _facio_; _honorifico_, from _honor_ and _facio_; _sacrifico_,
from _sacer_ and _facio_: All which are still understood of the Subject
really and truly endued with that Virtue and Quality from which the
Verb is derived. [Sidenote: Justified _none are while they actually
remain_ unjust.] Therefore, as none are said to be _sanctified_ that
are really _unholy_, while they are such; so neither can any be truly
said to be _justified_, while they actually remain _unjust_. Only
this Verb _justify_ hath, in a metaphorical and figurative Sense,
been otherwise taken, to wit, in a _Law_ Sense; as when a Man really
guilty of a Crime is freed from the Punishment of his Sin, he is said
to be _justified_; that is, put in the Place as if he were _just_. For
this Use of the Word hath proceeded from that true Supposition, _That
none ought to be acquitted, but the Innocent_. Hence also that Manner
of speaking, _I will justify such a Man_, or _I will justify this or
that_, is used from the Supposition that the Person and Thing is really
justifiable: And where there is an Error and Abuse in the Matter, so
far there is also in the Expression.

[Sidenote: Paræus _de _Just._ Cont. _Bell._ L. 2. C. 7. P. 469._]
This is so manifest and apparent, that _Paræus_, a chief Protestant,
and a _Calvinist_ also in his Opinion, acknowledges this; “We never
at any Time said,” saith he, “nor thought, that the Righteousness of
Christ was imputed to us, that by him we should be named _formally
just_, and not be so, as we have divers Times already shewed; for
that would no less soundly fight with right Reason, than if a guilty
Man absolved in Judgment should say, That he himself was _formally
just_ by the Clemency of the judge granting him his Life.” Now is it
not strange, that Men should be so facile in a Matter of so great
Concernment, as to build the Stress of their Acceptance with God upon
a mere borrowed and metaphorical Signification, to the excluding, or
at least esteeming that not necessary, without which the Scripture
saith expresly, _No Man shall ever see God_? [Sidenote: Holiness
_required; therefore _good Works_ are._] For if _Holiness_ be requisite
and necessary, of which this is said, then must _good Works_ also;
unless our Adversaries can shew us an _holy Man_ without _good Works_.
But, moreover, [_justified_] in this figurative Sense is used for
_approved_; and indeed for the most Part, if not always in Scripture,
when the Word [_justify_] is used, it is taken in the worst Part; that
is, that as the Use of the Word that way is an Usurpation, so it is
spoken of such as usurp the Thing to themselves, while it properly
doth not belong unto them; as will appear to those that will be at
the Pains to examine these Places. _Exod._ xxiii. 7. _Job_ ix. 20.
& xxvii. 5. _Prov._ xvii. 15. _Isa._ v. 23. _Jer._ iii. 11. _Ezek._
xvi. 51, 52. _Luke_ x. 29. & xvi. 15. which are all spoken of Men
_justifying the Wicked_, or of _wicked Men justifying themselves_; that
is, approving themselves in their Wickedness. If it be at any Time in
this Signification taken in good Part, it is very seldom, and that
so obvious and plain by the Context, as leaves no Scruple. But the
Question is not so much of the Use of the _Word_, where it is passingly
or occasionally used, as where the very Doctrine of _Justification_
is handled. Where indeed to mistake it, _viz._ in its proper Place,
so as to content ourselves with an _imaginary Justification_, while
God requires a _real_, is of most dangerous Consequence. For the
Disquisition of which let it be considered, that in all these Places
to the _Romans_, _Corinthians_, _Galatians_, and elsewhere, where the
Apostle handles this Theme, the Word may be taken in its own proper
Signification without any Absurdity. As, where it is often asserted
in the above-mentioned Epistles to the _Romans_ and _Galatians_,
[Sidenote: Justified, _in its proper Signification_.] That _a Man
cannot be justified by the Law of _Moses_, nor by the Works of the
Law_; there is no Absurdity nor Danger in understanding it according
to its own proper Signification, to wit, that a Man cannot be made
_just_ by the _Law of Moses_; seeing this so well agrees with that
Saying of the same Apostle, That _the Law makes nothing perfect_. And
also where it is said, _We are justified by Faith_, it may be very well
understood of being _made just_; seeing it is also said, That _Faith
purifies the Heart_; and no Doubt the _pure in Heart_ are just; and
the _Just live by Faith_. Again, where it is said, _We are justified
by Grace, we are justified by Christ, we are justified by the Spirit_;
it is no ways absurd to understand it of being _made just_, seeing by
his Spirit and Grace he doth make Men _just_. But to understand it
universally the other Way, merely for _Acceptance_ and _Imputation_,
would infer great Absurdities, as may be proved at large; but because
I judged it would be acknowledged, I forbear at present for Brevity’s
Sake. But further, in the most weighty Places where this Word _justify_
is used in Scripture, with an immediate Relation to the Doctrine of
_Justification_, [Sidenote: Justification _signifies a making just._]
our Adversaries must needs acknowledge it to be understood of _making
just_, and not barely in the legal Acceptation: As First, in that of 1
_Cor._ vi. 11. _But ye are washed, but ye are sanctified, but ye are
justified_, as I before have proved; which also many Protestants are
forced to acknowledge. [Sidenote: Thysius _Disp. de _Just._ Thes. 3._]
“Neither diffide we,” saith _Thysius_, “because of the most great and
strict Connexion, that _Justification_ doth sometimes seem also to
comprehend _Sanctification_ as a Consequence, as in _Rom._ viii. 30.
_Tit._ iii. 7. 1 _Cor._ vi. 11. _And such sometimes were ye, but ye
are washed_, &c.” _Zanchius_, having spoken concerning this Sense of
Justification, adds, saying, [Sidenote: Zanchius _in C. P. 2. ad_ Eph.
_V. 4. Loc. de_ Just.] “There is another Signification of the Word,
_viz._ for a Man from _unjust_ to be made _just_, even as _sanctified_
signifies from _unholy_ to be made _holy_: In which Signification the
Apostle said, in the Place above-cited, _And such were some of you_,
&c. that is, of unclean ye are made holy, and of unjust ye are made
just by the Holy Spirit, for Christ’s Sake, in whom ye have believed.
Of this Signification is that, _Rev._ xxii. 11. _Let him that is just,
be just still_; that is, really from just become more just, even as
from unjust he became just. And according to this Signification the
_Fathers_, and especially _Augustine_, have interpreted this Word.”
[Sidenote: H. Bulling.] Thus far he. _H. Bullinger_, on the same
Place, 1 _Cor._ vi. speaketh thus; “By divers Words,” saith he, “the
Apostle signifies the same Thing, when he saith, _Ye are washed, ye are
sanctified, ye are justified_.”

[Sidenote: Proof 2.] _Secondly_, In that excellent Saying of the
Apostle, so much observed, _Rom._ viii. 30. _Whom he called, them
he also justified, and whom he justified, them he also glorified_:
This is commonly called the _Golden Chain_, as being acknowledged
to comprehend the Method and Order of Salvation. And therefore, if
[_Justified_] were not understood here in its proper Signification
of being _made just_, Sanctification would be excluded out of this
Chain. And truly it is very worthy of Observation, that the Apostle,
in this succinct and compendious Account, makes the Word [_Justified_]
to comprehend all betwixt _Calling_ and _Glorifying_; [Sidenote:
Righteousness_, the only Medium by which from our _Calling_ we pass
to _Glorification.] thereby clearly insinuating, that the being
really _Righteous_, is that only _Medium_ by which from our _Calling_
we pass to _Glorification_. Almost all do acknowledge the Word to be
so taken in this Place; and not only so, but most of those who oppose
are forced to acknowledge, that as this is the most proper, so the
most common Signification of it: Thus divers famous _Protestants_
acknowledge. [Sidenote: D. Cham. _Tom. 3. de_ Sanct. _L. 10._ P. 1.]
“We are not,” saith _D. Chamierus_, “such impertinent Esteemers of
Words, as to be ignorant, nor yet such importunate Sophists, as to
deny that the Words _Justification_ and _Sanctification_ do infer one
another; yea, we know that the Saints are chiefly for this Reason
so called, because that in Christ they have received Remission of
Sins: And we read in the Revelations, _Let him that is just, be just
still_; which cannot be understood, except of the Fruit of inherent
Righteousness. Nor do we deny, but perhaps in other Places they may
be promiscuously taken, especially by the _Fathers_.” [Sidenote: Beza
_in C. 3. ad_ Tit. _Ver. 7._] “I take,” saith _Beza_, “the Name of
_Justification_ largely, so as it comprehends whatsoever we acquire
from Christ, as well by Imputation, as by the Efficacy of the Spirit in
sanctifying us. So likewise is the Word _Justification_ taken, _Rom._
viii. 30.” [Sidenote: Melanct. _in Apol. Conf. Aug._] _Melancthon_
saith, “That to be justified by Faith, signifies in Scripture not only
to be pronounced just, but also of unrighteous to be made righteous.”
Also some chief _Protestants_, though not so clearly, yet in Part,
hinted at our Doctrine, whereby we ascribe unto the _Death of Christ_
Remission of Sins, and the Work of Justification unto the _Grace of
the Spirit_ acquired by his Death. [Sidenote: Boræus, _in_ Gen. _C.
15_. Credidit Abraham. Deo, _P. 161_.] _Martinus Boræus_, explaining
that Place of the Apostle, _Rom._ iv. 25. _Who was given for our
Sins, and rose again for our Justification_, saith: “There are two
Things beheld in Christ, which are necessary to our Justification;
the one is his Death, the other is his arising from the Dead. By his
Death, the Sins of this World behoved to be expiated: By his Rising
from the Dead, it pleased the same Goodness of God to give the Holy
Spirit, whereby both the Gospel is believed, and the Righteousness,
lost by the Fault of the first _Adam_, is restored.” And afterwards
he saith; “The Apostle expresseth both Parts in these Words, _Who was
given for our Sins_, &c. in his Death is beheld the Satisfaction for
Sin; in his Resurrection, the Gift of the Holy Spirit, by which our
Justification is perfected.” [Sidenote: _Idem Lib. 3. Reg. Cap. 9. V.
4. P. 681._] And again, the same Man saith elsewhere; “Both these Kinds
of Righteousness are therefore contained in _Justification_, neither
can the one be separate from the other. So that in the Definition of
_Justification_, the Merit of the Blood of Christ is included, both
with the Remission of Sins, and with the Gift of the Holy Spirit of
Justification and Regeneration.” [Sidenote: Bucerus_, in _Rom. 4._ ad
Ver. 16._] _Martinus Bucerus_ saith; “Seeing by one Sin of _Adam_ the
World was lost, the Grace of Christ hath not only abolished that one
Sin, and Death which came by it; but hath together taken away those
infinite Sins, and also led into full Justification as many as are of
Christ; so that God now not only remits unto them _Adam_’s Sin, and
their own, but also gives them therewith the Spirit of a solid and
perfect Righteousness, which renders us conform unto the Image of the
First-begotten.” [Sidenote: Righteousness, _a Conformity to the Image
of the First-begotten_.] And upon these Words [_by Jesus Christ_] he
saith; “We always judge that the whole Benefit of Christ tends to
this, that we might be strong through the Gift of Righteousness, being
rightly and orderly adorned with all Virtue, that is, restored to the
Image of God.” [Sidenote: W. Forbes _in Consider. Modest. de _Just._
Lib. 2. Sect. 8._] And _lastly_, _William Forbes_ our Countryman,
Bishop of _Edinburgh_, saith; “Whensoever the Scripture makes Mention
of the Justification before God, as speaketh _Paul_, and from him
(besides others) _Augustine_, it appears that the Word [_justify_]
necessarily signifies not only to pronounce just in a Law Sense, but
also really and inherently to make just; because that God doth justify
a wicked Man otherwise than earthly Judges. [Sidenote: _How God
justifies the Wicked._] For he, when he justifies a wicked or unjust
Man, doth indeed pronounce him as these also do; but by pronouncing
him just, because his Judgment is according to Truth, he also makes
him really of unjust to become just.” And again, the same Man, upon
the same Occasion, answering the more rigid _Protestants_, who say,
That _God first justifies, and then makes just_; he adds: “But let them
have a Care, lest by too great and empty Subtilty, unknown both to the
Scriptures and the Fathers, they lessen and diminish the Weight and
Dignity of so great and divine a Benefit, so much celebrated in the
Scripture, to wit, _Justification_ of the Wicked. For if to the formal
Reason of _Justification_ of the Ungodly doth not at all belong his
_Justification_ (so to speak) _i. e._ his being made righteous, then in
the Justification of a Sinner, although he be justified, yet the Stain
of Sin is not taken away, but remains the same in his Soul as before
Justification: And so, notwithstanding the Benefit of Justification,
he remains as before, unjust and a Sinner; and nothing is taken away,
but the Guilt and Obligation to Pain, and the Offence and Enmity of God
through Non-imputation. But both the Scriptures and Fathers do affirm,
That in the _Justification_ of a Sinner, their Sins are not only
remitted, forgiven, covered, not imputed, but also taken away, blotted
out, cleansed, washed, purged, and very far removed from us, as appears
from many Places of the holy Scriptures.” The same _Forbes_ shews us at
length, in the following Chapter, That this was the confessed Judgment
of the _Fathers_, out of the Writings of those who hold the contrary
Opinion; some whereof, out of him, I shall note. [Sidenote: Calv.
_Inst. L. 3. C. 11. Sect. 15_.] As, first, _Calvin_ saith, “That the
Judgment of _Augustine_, or at least his Manner of speaking, is not
throughout to be received; who although he took from Man all Praise
of Righteousness, and ascribed all to the Grace of God, yet he refers
Grace to Sanctification, by which we are regenerate through the Spirit
unto Newness of Life.” [Sidenote: Chemnit. _in Exam. Conc. Trid. de
Just._ P. 129.] _Chemnitius_ saith, “That they do not deny, but that
the Fathers take the Word [_justify_] for _renewing_, by which Works
of Righteousness are wrought in us by the Spirit.” And P. 130. “I am
not ignorant, that the Fathers indeed often use the Word [_justify_]
in this Signification, to wit, of _making just_.” [Sidenote: Zanchius
_in C. 2. ad_ Ep. _Ver. 4. Loc. de Just_. Thes. 13.] _Zanchius_
saith, “That the Fathers, and chiefly _Augustine_, interpret the Word
[_justify_] according to this Signification, to wit, of _making just_;
so that, according to them, to be _justified_ was no other than of
_unjust_ to be made _just_, through the Grace of God for Christ.” He
mentioneth more, but this may suffice to our Purpose.

§. VIII. [Sidenote: Asser. I.] Having thus sufficiently proved, that by
_Justification_ is to be understood as really being _made righteous_:
I do boldly affirm, and that not only from a _notional Knowledge_, but
from a _real, inward experimental Feeling_ of the Thing, [Sidenote:
_Christ revealed and formed in the Soul of a Man, is the formal Cause
of Man’s Justification._] That the _immediate_, _nearest_, or _formal
Cause_ (if we must in Condescension to some use this Word) of a Man’s
Justification in the Sight of God, is, the _Revelation of Jesus Christ
in the Soul_, [Sidenote: Proof 1.] changing, altering, and renewing
the Mind, by whom (even the Author of this inward Work) thus formed
and revealed, we are truly justified and accepted in the Sight of God.
For it is as we are thus covered and clothed with him, in whom the
Father is always well pleased, that we may _draw near to God_, and
stand with Confidence before his Throne, being purged by the _Blood
of Jesus_ inwardly poured into our Souls, and clothed with his Life
and Righteousness therein revealed. And this is that Order and Method
of Salvation held forth by the Apostle in that divine Saying, _Rom._
v. 10. _For if when we were Enemies, we were reconciled to God by the
Death of his Son; much more, being reconciled, we shall be saved by his
Life._ For the Apostle first holding forth the Reconciliation wrought
by the Death of Christ, wherein God is near to receive and redeem Man,
holds forth his _Salvation_ and _Justification_ to be by the _Life of
Jesus_. Now, that this _Life_ is an _inward, spiritual_ Thing revealed
in the Soul, whereby it is renewed and brought forth out of _Death_,
where it naturally has been by the _Fall_, and so quickened and made
alive unto God, the same Apostle shews, _Ephes._ ii. 5. _Even when we
were dead in Sins and Trespasses, he hath quickened us together in
Christ (by whose Grace ye are saved) and hath raised us up together._
Now this none will deny to be the inward Work of Renovation, and
therefore the Apostle gives that Reason of their being _saved by
Grace_; which is the inward Virtue and Power of Christ in the Soul:
But of this Place more hereafter. Of the Revelation of this _inward
Life_ the Apostle also speaketh, 2 _Cor._ iv. 10. _That the Life also
of Jesus might be made manifest in our Bodies_; and Ver. 11. _That the
Life also of Jesus might be made manifest in our mortal Flesh_. Now
this inward _Life of Jesus_ is that _whereby_, as is before observed,
he said, _We are saved_.

[Sidenote: Proof 2.] Secondly, _That it is by this Revelation of Jesus
Christ, and the new Creation in us, that we are justified_, doth
evidently appear from that excellent Saying of the Apostle included
in the Proposition itself, _Tit._ iii. 5. _According to his Mercy
he hath saved us, by the Washing of Regeneration, and Renewing of
the Holy Ghost_, &c. Now that whereby we are saved, that we are also
no Doubt justified by; which Words are in this Respect synonymous.
[Sidenote: _The immediate Cause of _Justification_ is the inward Work
of _Regeneration.] Here the Apostle clearly ascribes the _immediate_
Cause of Justification to this inward Work of Regeneration, which is
_Jesus Christ revealed in the Soul_, as being that which formally
states us in a Capacity of being reconciled with God; the Washing or
Regeneration being that inward Power and Virtue, whereby the Soul is
cleansed, and clothed with the Righteousness of Christ, so as to be
made fit to appear before God.

[Sidenote: Proof 3.] _Thirdly_, This Doctrine is manifest from 2 _Cor._
xiii. 5. _Examine your own selves, whether ye be in the Faith; prove
your own selves: Know ye not your own selves, how that Jesus Christ is
in you, except ye be Reprobates?_ First, It appears here how earnest
the Apostle was that they should know Christ _in them_; so that he
presses this Exhortation upon them, and inculcates it three Times.
[Sidenote: _The Cause of _Reprobation_ is Christ not known by inward
_Revelation.] _Secondly_, He makes the Cause of Reprobation, or
Not-justification, the Want of Christ thus revealed and known in the
Soul: Whereby it necessarily follows, by the Rule of _Contraries_,
where the Parity is alike (as in this Case it is evident) that, where
Christ is inwardly known, there the Persons subjected to him are
approved and justified. For there can be nothing more plain than this,
That if we must know Christ _in us_, except we be Reprobates, or
unjustified Persons; if we know him _in us_, we are not Reprobates, and
consequently justified ones. Like unto this is that other Saying of the
same Apostle, Gal. iv. 19. _My little Children, of whom I travail in
Birth again, until Christ be formed in you_; and therefore the Apostle
terms this, _Christ within, the Hope of Glory_, Col. i. 27, 28. Now
that which is the _Hope of Glory_, can be no other than that which we
_immediately_ and _most nearly_ rely upon for our Justification, and
that whereby we are really and truly made just. And as we do not hereby
deny, but the original and fundamental Cause of our Justification is
the Love of God manifested in the Appearance of _Jesus Christ_ in the
Flesh, [Sidenote: _Christ by his Death and Sufferings has opened a
Way for our Reconciliation._] who by his Life, Death, Sufferings, and
Obedience, made a Way for our Reconciliation, and became a Sacrifice
for the Remission of Sins that are past, and purchased unto us this
_Seed_ and _Grace_, from which this Birth arises, and in which Jesus
Christ is inwardly received, formed, and brought forth in us, in his
own pure and holy Image of Righteousness, by which our Souls live
unto God, and are clothed with him, and have put him on, even as
the Scripture speaks, _Ephes._ iv. 23, 24. _Gal._ iii. 27. we stand
justified and saved in and by him, and by his Spirit and Grace, _Rom._
iii. 24. 1 _Cor._ vi. 11. _Tit._ iii. 7. So again, _reciprocally_,
we are hereby made Partakers of the Fulness of his _Merits_, and his
cleansing _Blood_ is near, to wash away every Sin and Infirmity, and to
heal all our Backslidings, as often as we turn towards him by unfeigned
Repentance, and become renewed by his Spirit. Those then that find
him thus raised, and ruling in them, have a true Ground of Hope to
believe that they are justified by his Blood. But let not any deceive
themselves, so as to foster themselves in a vain Hope and Confidence,
that by the Death and Sufferings of Christ they are justified, so long
as _Sin lies at their Door_, Gen. iv. 7. Iniquity prevails, and they
remain yet unrenewed and unregenerate; lest it be said unto them, _I
know you not_. Let that Saying of Christ be remembered, _Not every
one that saith Lord, Lord, shall enter, but he that doth the Will of
my Father_, Matt. vii. 21. To which let these excellent Sayings of the
beloved Disciple be added; _Little Children, let no Man deceive you; he
that doth Righteousness is righteous, even as he is righteous. He that
committeth Sin is of the Devil; because if our Heart condemn us, God is
greater than our Heart, and knoweth all Things_, 1 John iii. 7. & 20.

Many famous Protestants bear Witness to this inward Justification
by Christ inwardly revealed and formed in Man. [Sidenote: Boræus
_in _Gen._ P. 162._] As _M. Boræus_: “In the Imputation,” saith he,
“wherein Christ is ascribed and imputed to Believers for Righteousness,
the Merit of his Blood, and the Holy Ghost given unto us by Virtue
of his Merits, are equally included. [Sidenote: _The Testimonies of
famous Protestants of inward Justification_.] And so it shall be
confessed, _That Christ is our Righteousness_, as well from his Merit,
Satisfaction, and Remission of Sins obtained by him, as from the Gifts
of the Spirit of Righteousness. And if we do this, we shall consider
the whole Christ proposed to us for our Salvation, and not any single
Part of him.” The same Man, P. 169. “In our justification then Christ
is considered, who breathes and lives in us, to wit, by his Spirit
put on by us; concerning which putting on the Apostle saith, _Ye
have put on Christ_.” And again, P. 171. “We endeavour to treat in
Justification, not of Part of Christ, but him wholly, in so far as he
is our Righteousness every Way.” And a little after: “As then blessed
_Paul_, in our Justification, when he saith, _Whom he justified, them
he glorified_, comprehends all Things which pertain to our being
reconciled to God the Father, and our Renewing, which fits us for
attaining unto Glory, such as Faith, Righteousness, Christ, and the
Gift of Righteousness exhibited by him, whereby we are regenerated, to
the fulfilling of the Justification which the Law requires; so we also
will have all Things comprehended in this Cause, which are contained in
the Recovery of Righteousness and Innocency.” And P. 181. “The Form,”
saith he, “of our Justification is the divine Righteousness itself,
by which we are formed just and good. This is _Jesus Christ_, who is
esteemed our Righteousness, partly from the Forgiveness of Sins, and
partly from the Renewing and the Restoring of that Integrity, which was
lost by the Fault of the first _Adam_: So that this new and heavenly
_Adam_ being put on by us, of which the Apostle saith, _Ye have put on
Christ_, ye have put him on, I say, as the Form, so the Righteousness,
Wisdom, and Life of God.” [Sidenote: Inuncunas.] So also affirmeth
_Claudius Albertus Inuncanus_, see his _Orat. Apodict. Lausaniæ Excus.
1587. Orat. 2_. P. 86, 87. [Sidenote: Zuinglius.] _Zuinglius_ also,
in his Epistle to the Princes of _Germany_, as cited by _Himelius_,
C. 7. P. 60. saith, “That the Sanctification of the Spirit is true
Justification, which alone suffices to justify.” [Sidenote: Estius.]
_Estius_ upon 1 _Cor._ vi. 11. saith, “Lest Christian Righteousness
should be thought to consist in the _Washing_ alone, that is, in
the Remission of Sins, he addeth the other Degree or Part, [but ye
are _sanctified_] that is, ye have attained to Purity, so that ye
are now truly holy before God. _Lastly_, Expressing the Sum of the
Benefit received in one Word, which includes both the Parts, But ye
are _justified_ (the Apostle adds) in the Name of the Lord _Jesus
Christ_, that is, by his Merits, and in the Spirit of our God, that
is, the Holy Spirit proceeding from God, and communicated to us by
Christ.” [Sidenote: R. Baxter.] And lastly, _Richard Baxter_, a famous
_English_ Preacher, in his Book called _Aphorisms of Justification_,
P. 80. saith, “That some ignorant Wretches gnash their Teeth at this
Doctrine, as if it were flat _Popery_, not understanding the Nature of
the Righteousness of the new Covenant; which is all out of Christ in
ourselves, though wrought by the Power of the Spirit of Christ in us.”

§. IX. [Sidenote: Posit. 3.] The _third_ Thing proposed to
be considered is, concerning _the Necessity of good Works to
Justification_. I suppose there is enough said before to clear us from
any Imputation of being _Popish_ in this Matter.

[Sidenote: Object.] But if it be queried, _Whether we have not said, or
will not affirm, that a Man is justified by Works?_

[Sidenote: _Answ._] I answer; I hope none need, neither ought to take
Offence, if in this Matter we use the plain Language of the holy
Scripture, which faith expresly in answer hereunto, _James_ ii. 24.
[Sidenote: _That Works are necessary to Justification._] _Ye see then
how that by Works a Man is justified, and not by Faith only._ I shall
not offer to prove the Truth of this Saying, since what is said in this
Chapter by the Apostle is sufficient to convince any Man that will read
and believe it; I shall only from this derive this one Argument.

[Sidenote: Arg.] If no Man can be justified without Faith, and no Faith
be living, nor yet available to Justification without Works, then Works
are necessary to _Justification_:

But the first is true: Therefore also the last.

For this Truth is so apparent and evident in the Scriptures, that
for the Proof of it we might transcribe most of the Precepts of the
Gospel. I shall instance a few, which of themselves do so clearly
assert the Thing in Question, that they need no Commentary, nor farther
Demonstration. And then I shall answer the Objections made against
this, which indeed are the Arguments used for the contrary Opinion,
_Heb._ xii. 14. _Without Holiness no Man shall see God._ Matt. vii. 21.
[Sidenote: _Not the Sayers, but the Doers are blessed._] _Not every one
that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the Kingdom of Heaven,
but he that doeth the Will of my Father which is in Heaven._ John xiii.
7. _If ye know these Things, happy are ye if ye do them._ 1 Cor. vii.
19. _Circumcision is nothing, and Uncircumcision is nothing, but the
Keeping of the Commandments of God._ Rev. xxii. 14. _Blessed are they
that do his Commandments, that they may have Right to the Tree of Life,
and may enter in through the Gates into the City_: And many more that
might be instanced. From all which I thus argue:

[Sidenote: _Arg._] If those only can _enter into the Kingdom that do
the Will of the Father_; if those be accounted only the _wise Builders_
and _happy_ that do the Sayings of Christ; if no Observations avail,
but only the _Keeping of the Commandments_; and if they be blessed
that _do the Commandments_, and thereby have Right to the _Tree of
Life_, and Entrance through the Gates into the City; then _Works_ are
absolutely _necessary to Salvation_ and _Justification_:

But the first is true: And _therefore_ also the last.

The Consequence of the _Antecedent_ is so clear and evident, that I
think no Man of sound Reason will call for a Proof of it.

§. X. [Sidenote: Obj. 1.] But they object, _That Works are not
necessary to Justification_: First, because of that Saying of _Christ_,
Luke xvii. 10. [Sidenote: _Unprofitable Servants._] _When ye shall have
done all these Things that are commanded you, say, We are unprofitable

[Sidenote: _Answ._] _Answer_; As to God we are indeed unprofitable,
for he needeth nothing, [Sidenote: _God needeth nothing._] neither
can we add any Thing unto him: But as to ourselves, we are not
unprofitable; else it might be said, that it is not profitable for
a Man to keep _God’s Commandments_; which is most absurd, and would
contradict Christ’s Doctrine throughout. Doth not Christ, _Matt._ v.
through all those Beatitudes, pronounce Men blessed for their _Purity_,
for their _Meekness_, for their _Peaceableness_, &c? And is not then
that for which Christ pronounceth Men blessed, profitable unto them?
Moreover, _Matt._ xxv. 21, 23. [Sidenote: _Those that had improved
their _Talents_, were called good and faithful Servants._] Doth not
Christ pronounce the Men _good and faithful Servants_ that improved
their Talents? Was not their doing of that then profitable unto them?
And Ver. 30. it is said of him that hid his _Talent_, and did not
improve it, _Cast ye the unprofitable Servant into utter Darkness_.
If then not improving of the _Talent_ made the Man _unprofitable_,
and he was therefore _cast into utter Darkness_, it will follow by
the Rule of _Contraries_, so far at least that the Improving made the
other profitable; seeing, if our Adversaries will allow us to believe
Christ’s Words, this is made a _Reason_, and so at least a _Cause
instrumental_ of their Acceptance; _Well done, good and faithful
Servant, thou hast been faithful over a few Things, I will make thee
Ruler over many Things; enter thou into the Joy of thy Lord_.

[Sidenote: Obj. 2.] _Secondly_, They object those Sayings of the
Apostle, where he excludes the Deeds of the Law from Justification; as
first, _Rom._ iii. 20. _Because by the Deeds of the Law there shall be
no Flesh justified in his Sight._ And Ver. 28. _Therefore we conclude,
that a Man is justified by Faith, without the Deeds of the Law._

[Sidenote: _Answ. 1._.] _Answ._ We have shewn already what Place we
give to _Works_, even to the _best of Works_, in _Justification_; and
how we ascribe its immediate and formal Cause to the _Worker_ brought
forth in us, but not to the _Works_. But in answer to this Objection,
I say, there is a great Difference betwixt the _Works_ of the _Law_,
and those of _Grace_, or of the _Gospel_. [Sidenote: _The Works of the
Gospel or Grace distinguished from those of the Law._] The first are
excluded, the second not, but are necessary. The first are those which
are performed in Man’s own Will, and by his Strength, in a Conformity
to the outward Law and Letter; and therefore are Man’s own imperfect
Works, or Works of the Law, which _makes nothing perfect_: And to this
belong all the Ceremonies, Purifications, Washings, and Traditions of
the _Jews_. The second are the Works of the Spirit of Grace in the
Heart, wrought in Conformity to the inward and spiritual Law; which
Works are not wrought in Man’s Will, nor by his Power and Ability, but
in and by the Power and Spirit of Christ _in us_, and therefore are
_pure_ and _perfect_ in their Kind (as shall hereafter be proved) and
may be called _Christ’s Works_, for that he is the immediate Author
and Worker of them: Such _Works_ we affirm absolutely _necessary to
Justification_, so that a Man cannot be justified without them; and
all _Faith_ without them is dead and useless, as the Apostle _James_
saith. Now, that such a Distinction is to be admitted, and that the
_Works_ excluded by the Apostle in the Matter of Justification are
of the first Kind, will appear, if we consider the Occasion of the
Apostle’s mentioning this, as well here, as throughout his Epistle to
the _Galatians_, where he speaks of this Matter and to this Purpose
at large: Which was this, That whereas many of the _Gentiles_ that
were not of the Race or Seed of _Abraham_, as concerning the Flesh,
were come to be converted to the _Christian Faith_, and to believe in
him, some of those, that were of the _Jewish Proselytes_, thought to
subject the faithful and believing _Gentiles_ to the legal Ceremonies
and Observations, as necessary to their Justification: [Sidenote: _The
Occasion of the Apostle’s speaking of the Works of the Law, which are
excluded._] This gave the Apostle _Paul_ Occasion at length, in his
Epistle to the _Romans_, _Galatians_, and elsewhere, to shew the Use
and Tendency of the Law, and of its Works, and to contra-distinguish
them from the Faith of Christ, and the Righteousness thereof; shewing
how the former was ceased and become ineffectual, the other remaining,
and yet necessary. And that the Works excluded by the Apostle are of
this Kind of Works of the Law, appears by the whole Strain of his
Epistle to the _Galatians_, Chap. i, ii, iii, and iv. For after, in
Chap. iv. he upbraideth them for their Returning unto the Observation
of _Days_ and _Times_, and that, in the Beginning of Chap. v. he
sheweth them their Folly, and the evil Consequence of adhering to the
Ceremonies of Circumcision, then he adds, Ver. 6. _For in Christ Jesus
neither Circumcision nor Uncircumcision availeth, but Faith, which
worketh by Love_; and thus he concludes again, Chap. vi. Ver. 15. _For
in Christ Jesus neither Circumcision availeth, nor Uncircumcision, but
a new Creature._ From which Places appeareth that Distinction of Works
before-mentioned, whereof the one is excluded, the other necessary
to Justification. For the Apostle sheweth here, that _Circumcision_
(which Word is often used to comprehend the whole Ceremonies and legal
Performances of the _Jews_) is not necessary, nor doth avail. Here then
are the _Works_ which are excluded, by which _no Man is justified_; but
_Faith_, which _worketh by Love_, but the _new Creature_, this is that
which _availeth_, which is _absolutely necessary_: For _Faith_, that
_worketh by Love_, cannot be without _Works_; for, as it is said in the
same 5th Chapter, Ver. 22. _Love is a Work of the Spirit_; also the
_new Creature_, if it avail and be necessary, cannot be without Works;
seeing it is natural for it to bring forth Works of Righteousness.
Again, that the Apostle no Ways intends to exclude such good Works
appears, in that in the same Epistle he exhorts the _Galatians_ to
them, and holds forth the Usefulness and Necessity of them, and that
very plainly, Chap. vi. Ver. 7, 8, 9. [Sidenote: _The Usefulness and
Necessity of good_ Works.] _Be not deceived_, saith he, _God is not
mocked; for whatsoever a Man soweth, that shall he also reap: For he
that soweth to the Flesh, shall of the Flesh reap Corruption; but he
that soweth to the Spirit, shall of the Spirit reap Life everlasting.
And let us not be weary of Well-doing, for in due Season we shall
reap, if we faint not_: Doth it not hereby appear, how necessary the
Apostle would have the _Galatians_ know that he esteemed good Works
to be? To wit, not the outward Ceremonies and Traditions of the Law,
but the Fruits of the Spirit, mentioned a little before; by which
Spirit he would have them to be led, and walk in those good Works: As
also, how much he ascribed to these good Works, by which he affirms
_Life everlasting_ is reaped. Now, that cannot be useless to Man’s
Justification, which capacitates him to reap so rich an Harvest.

[Sidenote: _Answ. 2._] But _Lastly_; For a full Answer to this
Objection, and for the establishing of this Doctrine of _good Works_,
I shall instance another Saying of the same Apostle _Paul_, which our
Adversaries also in the Blindness of their Minds make use of against
us; to wit, Tit. iii. 5. [Sidenote: Justified _not by our _legal
Performances_, but the _Fruit_ of the_ Spirit.] _Not by Works of
Righteousness which we have done, but according to his Mercy he saved
us, by the Washing of Regeneration, and Renewing of the Holy Ghost._ It
is generally granted by all, that [_saved_] is here all one as if it
had been said [_justified_.] Now there are two Kinds of _Works_ here
mentioned: One by which we are not saved, that is, not justified; and
another by which we are saved, or justified. The first, the Works of
Righteousness which we have wrought, that is, which we in our first
fallen Nature, by our own Strength, have wrought, our own _legal
Performances_, and therefore may truly and properly be called ours,
whatever specious Appearances they may have. And that it must needs
and ought to be so understood, doth appear from the other Part, _By
the Washing of Regeneration, and Renewing of the Holy Ghost_; seeing
_Regeneration_ is a Work, comprehensive of many good Works, even of all
those which are called _the Fruits of the Spirit_.

[Sidenote: Obj.] Now in Case it should be objected, _That these may
also be called ours, because wrought in us, and also by us many Times
as Instruments_;

[Sidenote: _Answ._] I answer; It is far otherwise than the former: For
in the first we are yet alive in our own natural State, unrenewed,
working of ourselves, seeking to save ourselves, by imitating and
endeavouring a Conformity to the outward Letter of the Law; and so
wrestling and striving in the _Carnal Mind_, that is Enmity to God,
and in the _cursed Will_ not yet subdued. But in this second we are
_crucified with Christ_, we are become _dead with him_, have _partaken
of the Fellowship of his Sufferings_, are made _conformable to his
Death_; and our first Man, our _old Man with all his Deeds_, as well
the openly Wicked as the seemingly Righteous, our legal Endeavours
and foolish Wrestlings, are all buried and nailed to the _Cross of
Christ_; [Sidenote: _Not _We_, but _Christ in us_ is the Worker of
Righteousness._] and so it is no more _we_, but _Christ alive in us_,
the _Worker in us_. So that though it be _we_ in a Sense, yet it is
according to that of the Apostle to the same _Galatians_, Chap. ii.
Ver. 20. _I am crucified, yet nevertheless I live, yet not I, but
Christ liveth in me: Not I, but the Grace of Christ in me_. These Works
are especially to be ascribed to the _Spirit of Christ_, and the _Grace
of God in us_, as being immediately thereby acted and led in them, and
enabled to perform them. And this Manner of Speech is not strained, but
familiar to the Apostles, as appears, Gal. ii. 8. _For he that wrought
effectually in Peter to the Apostleship of the Circumcision, the same
was mighty in me_, &c. Phil. ii. 13. _For it is God which worketh in
you, both to will and to do_, &c. So that it appears by this Place,
that since the _Washing of Regeneration_ is necessary to Justification,
and that _Regeneration_ comprehends _Works_, _Works_ are necessary; and
that these _Works_ of the Law that are excluded, are different from
these that are necessary and admitted.

§. XI. [Sidenote: Obj. 3.] _Thirdly_, They object _That no Works, yea,
not the Works of Christ in us, can have Place in Justification, because
nothing that is impure can be useful in it; and all the Works wrought
in us are impure_. For this they allege that Saying of the Prophet
_Isaiah_, lxiv. 6. _All our Righteousnesses are as filthy Rags_; adding
this Reason, _That seeing we are impure, so must our Works be; which
though good in themselves, yet as performed by us, they receive a
Tincture of Impurity, even as clean Water passing through an unclean
Pipe is defiled_.

[Sidenote: _Answ. 1._] That no _impure Works_ are useful to
Justification, is confessed; but that all the Works wrought in the
Saints are such, is denied. And for Answer to this, the former
Distinction will serve. We confess, that the first Sort of _Works_
above-mentioned are _impure_; but not the second: Because the first are
wrought in the unrenewed State, but not the other. And as for that of
_Isaiah_, it must relate to the first Kind; [Sidenote: _What Sort of
_Righteousness_ is as filthy _Rags.] for though he saith, _All our
Righteousnesses are as filthy Rags_, yet that will not comprehend the
Righteousness of Christ _in us_, but only that which we work _of_ and
_by_ ourselves. For should we so conclude, then it would follow, that
we should throw away all _Holiness_ and _Righteousness_; since that
which is as _filthy Rags_, and as a _menstruous Garment_, ought to be
thrown away; yea, it would follow, that all the Fruits of the Spirit,
mentioned, _Gal._ iv. were as _filthy Rags_; Whereas on the Contrary,
some of the Works of the Saints are said to have a _sweet Savour
in the Nostrils of the Lord_; are said to be an _Ornament of great
Price in the Sight of God_; are said to _prevail with him_, and to be
_acceptable to him_; which _filthy Rags_ and a _menstruous Garment_
cannot be. Yea, many famous _Protestants_ have acknowledged, that this
Place is not therefore so to be understood. [Sidenote: Calvin _and
others their Sense concerning _Isa. 64. 6._ of our_ Righteousness.]
_Calvin_ upon this Place saith, “That it is used to be cited by some,
that they may prove there is so little Merit in our Works, that
they are before God filthy and defiled: But this seems to me to be
different from the Prophet’s Mind,” saith he, “seeing he speaks not
here of all Mankind.” [Sidenote: Musculus.] _Musculus_ upon this Place
saith, “That it was usual for this People to presume much of their
legal Righteousness, as if thereby they were made clean; nevertheless
they had no more Cleanness than the unclean Garment of a Man. Others
expound this Place concerning all the Righteousness of our Flesh;
that Opinion indeed is true; yet I think that the Prophet did rather
accommodate these Sayings to the Impurity of the People in _legal
Terms_.” [Sidenote: (Bertius) Epistolæ præfixæ dissert. ann.] The
Author (commonly supposed _Bertius_) speaking concerning the true Sense
of the 7th Chapter of the Epistle to the _Romans_, hath a Digression
touching this of _Isaiah_, saying; “This Place is commonly corrupted
by a pernicious Wresting; for it is still alleged, as if the Meaning
thereof inferred the most excellent Works of the best Christians,
_&c._” [Sidenote: Ja. Coret Apol. _Impress_. Paris, Ann. 1597 _Page
78_.] _James Coret_, a _French_ Minister in the Church of _Basil_, in
his _Apology_ concerning _Justification_ against _Alescales_, saith;
“Nevertheless concerning the Counsel of certain _good Men_, I must
admonish the Reader, that it never came into our Minds to abuse that
Saying of _Isa._ lxiv. 6. against _good Works_, in which it is said,
that _all our Righteousnesses are as filthy Rags_, as if he would have
that which is good in our _good Works_, and proceedeth from the _Holy
Spirit_, to be esteemed as a filthy and unclean Thing.”

§. XII. As to the other Part, _That seeing the best of Men are still
impure and imperfect, therefore their _Works_ must be so_; it is to
beg the Question, and depends upon a Proposition denied; and which is
to be discussed at farther Length in the next Proposition. But though
we should suppose a Man not thoroughly perfect in all Respects, yet
will not that hinder, but good and perfect _Works_ in their Kind may
be brought forth in him by the Spirit of Christ: Neither doth the
Example of _Water_ going through an unclean _Pipe_ hit the Matter;
because though Water may be capable to be tinctured with Uncleanness,
yet the Spirit of God cannot, whom we assert to be the immediate Author
of those _Works_ that avail in _Justification_: And therefore Jesus
Christ’s Works in his Children are _pure_ and _perfect_, and he worketh
in and through that _pure Thing_ of his own forming and creating
in them. Moreover, if this did hold, according to our Adversaries
Supposition, _That no Man ever was or can be perfect_, it would follow,
that the very Miracles and Works of the Apostles, which Christ wrought
in them, and they wrought in and by the Power, Spirit and Grace of
Christ, were also _impure_ and _imperfect_; [Sidenote: _Were the
Miracles and Works of the Apostles, wrought by the Power of Christ
in them, _impure_ and _imperfect_?_] such as their converting of the
Nations to the _Christian Faith_; their gathering of the _Churches_,
their writing of the _Holy Scriptures_; yea, and their offering up and
sacrificing of their _Lives_ for the _Testimony of Jesus_. What may
our Adversaries think of this Argument, whereby it will follow, that
the _Holy Scriptures_, whose Perfection and Excellency they seem so
much to magnify, are proved to be _impure_ and _imperfect_, because
they came through _impure_ and _imperfect Vessels_? It appears by
the Confessions of _Protestants_, that the _Fathers_ did frequently
attribute unto _Works_ of this Kind that _instrumental Work_, which we
have spoken of in _Justification_, albeit some ignorant Persons cry
out it is _Popery_, and also divers, and that famous _Protestants_,
do of themselves confess it. [Sidenote: A. Polan. _Our Doctrine of
_Justification_ and _Works_, is not Popery._] _Amandus Polanus_, in
his _Symphonia Catholica_, Cap. 27. _de Remissione Peccatorum_, P.
651. places this _Thesis_ as the common Opinion of _Protestants_, most
agreeable to the Doctrine of the _Fathers_: “We obtain the Remission
of Sins by Repentance, Confession, Prayers, and Tears, proceeding
from Faith, but do not _merit_, to speak properly; and therefore we
obtain Remission of Sins, not by the _Merit_ of our Repentance and
Prayers, but by the Mercy and Goodness of God.” [Sidenote: Gentiletus
_Ex Impress._ Gen. 1516.] _Innocentius Gentiletus_, a Lawyer of great
Fame among _Protestants_, in his _Examen_ of the _Council of Trent_,
P. 66, 67. of _Justification_, having before spoken of _Faith_ and
_Works_, adds these Words: “But seeing the one cannot be without the
other, we call them both conjunctly _instrumental Causes_.” [Sidenote:
Zanchius.] _Zanchius_, in his fifth Book, _De Naturâ Dei_, saith; “We
do not simply deny, that _good Works_ are the Cause of _Salvation_, to
wit, the instrumental, rather than the efficient Cause, which they call
[_sine quâ non_.”] And afterwards, “Good Works are the instrumental
Cause of the Possession of _Life eternal_; for by these, as by a Means
and a lawful Way, God leads unto the Possession of _Life eternal_.”
[Sidenote: G. Ames. _in Medulla S. Theologiæ_, L. 2. C. 1. Thes. 30.]
_G. Amesius_ saith, “That our Obedience, albeit it be not the principal
and meritorious Cause of _Life eternal_, is nevertheless a Cause
in some Respect, administering, helping, and advancing towards the
Possession of the Life.” [Sidenote: R. Baxter.] Also _Richard Baxter_,
in his Book above-cited, Page 155. saith, “_That we are justified by_
Works in the same Kind of Causality as by _Faith_, to wit, as being
both Causes _sine quâ non_, or Conditions of the _New Covenant_ on our
Part requisite to Justification.” And P. 195. he saith, “It is needless
to teach any Scholar, who hath read the Writings of _Papists_, how this
Doctrine differs from them.”

[Sidenote: _Of the _Merit_ and _Reward_ of _Works.] But _lastly_,
Because it is fit here to say something of the _Merit_ and _Reward_ of
_Works_, I shall add something in this Place of our Sense and Belief
concerning that Matter. We are far from thinking or believing, that
Man merits any Thing by his Works from God, all being of _Free Grace_;
and therefore do we, and always have denied that _Popish_ Notion of
_Meritum ex condigno_. Nevertheless we cannot deny, but that God,
out of his Infinite Goodness wherewith he hath loved Mankind, after
he communicates to him his holy _Grace_ and _Spirit_, doth, according
to his own Will, recompence and reward the _good Works_ of his
Children; [Sidenote: _GOD rewards the good _Works_ of his Children._]
and therefore this _Merit_ of _Congruity_ or _Reward_, in so far as
the Scripture is plain and positive for it, we may not deny; neither
wholly reject the Word, in so far as the Scripture makes use of it.
For the same Greek [Greek: axion: αξιον], which signifies [_Merit_]
is also in those Places where the _Translators_ express it _Worth_,
or _worthy_, as _Mat._ iii. 8. 1 _Thess._ ii. 12. 2 _Thess._ i. 5.
11. Concerning which _R. Baxter_ saith, in the Book above-cited, P.
8. “But in a larger Sense, as Promise is an Obligation, and the Thing
promised is said to be Debt, so the Performers of the Conditions are
called _Worthy_, and that which they perform _Merit_; although properly
all be of _Grace_, and not of _Debt_.” Also those, who are called
the _Fathers_ of the _Church_, frequently used this Word of _Merit_,
whose Sayings concerning this Matter I think not needful to insert,
because it is not doubted, but evident, that many _Protestants_ are
not averse from this _Word_, in the Sense that we use it. The Apology
for the _Augustan Confession_, Art. 20. hath these Words; “We agree
that _Works_ are truly meritorious, not of Remission of Sins, or
Justification; but they are meritorious of other Rewards corporal and
spiritual, which are indeed as well in this Life, as after this Life.”
And further, “Seeing _Works_ are a certain fulfilling of the Law, they
are rightly said to be meritorious; it is rightly said, that a Reward
is due to them.”

[Sidenote: _Conference of _Oldenburgh.] In the Acts of the Conference
of _Oldenburgh_, the electoral Divines, P. 110. & 265. say, “In this
Sense our Churches also are not averse from the Word [_Merit_] used by
the Fathers; neither therefore do they defend the _Popish_ Doctrine of

[Sidenote: G. Vossius _of the Word _Merit.] _G. Vossius_, in his
_Theological Thesis_ concerning the Merits of _good Works_, saith; “We
have not adventured to condemn the Word [_Merit_] wholly, as being that
which both many of the Ancients use, and also the reformed Churches
have used in their Confessions. Now that God judgeth and accepteth Men
according to their _Works_, is beyond Doubt to those that seriously
will read and consider these Scriptures.” _Matt._. xvi. 27. _Rom._. ii.
6. 7. 10. 2 _Cor._ v. 10. _James_ i. 25. _Heb._ x. 35. 1 _Pet._ i. 17.
_Rev._ xxii. 12.

§. XIII. And to conclude this _Proposition_, let none be so bold as
to _mock God_, supposing themselves justified and accepted in the
Sight of God, by Virtue of Christ’s Death and Sufferings, while they
remain unsanctified and unjustified in their own Hearts, [Sidenote:
Job 8. 13.] and polluted in their Sins, lest their Hope prove that
of the _Hypocrite_, which perisheth. [Sidenote: _The _Hope_ of the
_Hypocrite_ shall perish, but _Grace_ is to the _Humble.] Neither
let any foolishly imagine, that they can by their own Works, or by the
Performance of any Ceremonies or Traditions, or by the Giving of Gold
or Money, or by afflicting their Bodies in Will-worship and voluntary
Humility, or foolishly striving to conform their Way to the outward
Letter of the Law, flatter themselves that they merit before God, or
draw a Debt upon him, or that any Man or Men have Power to make such
Kind of Things effectual to their Justification, lest they be found
_foolish Boasters_, and _Strangers_ to _Christ_ and his _Righteousness_
indeed. But blessed for ever are they, that having truly had a Sense of
their own Unworthiness and Sinfulness, and having seen all their own
Endeavours and Performances fruitless and vain, and beheld their own
Emptiness, and the Vanity of their vain Hopes, Faith and Confidence,
while they remained inwardly struck, pursued, and condemned by _God’s
holy Witness in their Hearts_, and so having applied themselves
thereto, and suffered his _Grace_ to work in them, are become _changed_
and _renewed_ in the Spirit of their Minds, passed from _Death_ to
_Life_, and know _Jesus_ arisen in them, _working both the Will and
the Deed_; and so having _put on the Lord Jesus Christ_, in Effect are
clothed with him, and partake of his Righteousness and Nature; such can
draw near to the Lord with Boldness, and know their Acceptance _in_ and
_by_ him; _in whom_, and in as many as are found in him, _the Father is
well pleased_.


Concerning PERFECTION.

_In whom this pure and holy _Birth_ is fully brought forth, the Body
    of Death and Sin comes to be crucified and removed, and their
    Hearts united and subjected to the _Truth_; so as not to obey any
    Suggestions or Temptations of the Evil One, but to be free from
    actual sinning and transgressing of the _Law of God_, and in that
    Respect _perfect_: Yet doth this _Perfection_ still admit of a
    Growth; and there remaineth always in some Part a Possibility of
    sinning, where the Mind doth not most diligently and watchfully
    attend unto the Lord._

§. I. Since we have placed _Justification_ in the Revelation of _Jesus
Christ_ formed and brought forth in the Heart, there working his Works
of Righteousness, and bringing forth the Fruits of the Spirit, the
Question is, How far he may prevail in us while we are in this Life,
or we over our Souls Enemies, in and by his Strength? Those that
plead for _Justification_ wholly without them, merely by imputative
Righteousness, denying the Necessity of being clothed with real and
inward Righteousness, do consequently affirm, [Sidenote: _These are the
Words of the _Westminster_ larger _Catechism.] “That it is impossible
for a Man, even the best of Men, to be free of Sin in this Life,
which, _they say_, no Man ever was; but on the contrary, that none
can, neither of himself, nor by any Grace received in this Life (_O
wicked Saying against the Power of God’s Grace_) keep the Commandments
of God perfectly; but that every Man doth break the Commandments in
Thought, Word, and Deed:” Whence they also affirm, as was a little
before observed, “That the very best Actions of the Saints, their
Prayers, their Worships, are impure and polluted.” [Sidenote: _Whether
it is possible to keep the_ Commandments of God?] We on the contrary,
though we freely acknowledge this of the natural fallen Man, in his
first State, whatever his Profession or Pretence may be, so long as he
is unconverted and unregenerate, yet we do believe, that to those
in whom Christ comes to be formed, and the new Man brought forth,
[Sidenote: Part I.] and born of the incorruptible Seed (as that Birth,
and Man in Union therewith, naturally doth the Will of God) it is
possible so far to keep to it, as not to be found daily Transgressors
of the _Law of God_. [Sidenote: Controversy _stated_.] And for the more
clear _Stating of the Controversy_, let it be considered:

§. II. [Sidenote: I. _Notional Knowledge._] _First_, That we place not
this Possibility in Man’s own Will and Capacity, as he is a Man, the
Son of fallen _Adam_, or as he is in his natural State, however wise or
knowing, or however much endued with a notional and literal Knowledge
of Christ, thereby endeavouring a Conformity to the Letter of the Law,
as it is outward.

[Sidenote: II. _The new Birth._] _Secondly_, That we attribute it
wholly to Man, as he is born again, renewed in his Mind, raised by
Christ, knowing Christ alive, reigning and ruling in him, and guiding
and leading him by his Spirit, and revealing in him the Law of the
Spirit of Life; which not only manifests and reproves Sin, but also
gives Power to come out of it.

[Sidenote: III. _Growth in Perfection._] _Thirdly_, That by this
we understand not such a _Perfection_ as may not daily admit of a
Growth, and consequently mean not as if we were to be as pure, holy,
and perfect as God in his divine Attributes of Wisdom, Knowledge, and
Purity; but only a _Perfection_ proportionable and answerable to Man’s
Measure, whereby we are kept from transgressing the _Law of God_, and
enabled to answer what he requires of us; [Sidenote: _He that improved
his _Two Talents_ was nothing less acceptable than he with the five_.]
even as he that improved his _two Talents_ so as to make _four_ of
them, perfected his Work, and was so accepted of his Lord as to be
called a _good and faithful Servant_, nothing less than he that made
his _five ten_. Even as a little Gold is perfect Gold in its Kind, as
well as a great Mass, and a Child hath a perfect Body as well as a Man,
though it daily grow more and more. Thus _Christ_ is said, _Luke_ ii.
52. to have _increased in Wisdom and Stature, and in Favour with God
and Man_; though before that Time he had never _sinned_, and was no
Doubt _perfect_, in a true and proper Sense.

[Sidenote: IV. _Wiles of the Enemy._] _Fourthly_, Though a Man may
witness this for a Season, and therefore all ought to press after it;
yet we do not affirm but those that have attained it in a Measure may,
by the Wiles and Temptations of the Enemy, fall into Iniquity, and lose
it sometimes, if they be not watchful, and do not diligently attend to
_that of God_ in the Heart. And we doubt not but many good and holy
Men, who have arrived to everlasting Life, have had divers Ebbings
and Flowings of this Kind; [Sidenote: _Every Sin weakens a Man in his
spiritual Condition, but doth not destroy him altogether._] for though
every Sin weakens a Man in his spiritual Condition, yet it doth not so
as to destroy him altogether, or render him uncapable of rising again.

[Sidenote: V. _Righteousness became natural._] _Lastly_, Though I
affirm, that after a Man hath arrived at such a State, in which he
may be able not to sin, yet he may sin: Nevertheless, I will not
affirm that a State is not attainable in this Life, in which to do
_Righteousness_ may be so natural to the regenerate Soul, that in
the Stability of that Condition he cannot sin. Others may speak more
certainly of this State, if they have arrived at it. With respect to
myself, I speak modestly, because I ingenuously confess that I have not
yet attained it; but I cannot deny that there is such a State, as it
seems to be so clearly asserted by the Apostle, 1 _John_ iii. 9. _He
that is born of God sinneth not, neither can he, because the Seed of
God remaineth in him_.

[Sidenote: Part II.] [Sidenote: Sect. 1.] The _Controversy_ being thus
stated, which will serve to obviate _Objections_, I shall proceed,
_First_, to shew the Absurdity of that Doctrine that pleads for Sin
_for Term of Life_, even in the Saints.

[Sidenote: Sect. 2.] _Secondly_, To prove this Doctrine of _Perfection_
from many pregnant Testimonies of the Holy Scripture.

[Sidenote: Sect. 3.] And, _Lastly_, To answer the Arguments and
Objections of our Opposers.

§. III. [Sidenote: Sect. I.] [Sidenote: Proof 1. _The Doctrine of
_Pleading for Sin for Term of Life_ absurd._] _First_ then, This
Doctrine, _viz._ That the _Saints nor can nor ever will be free of
sinning in this Life_, is inconsistent with the Wisdom of God, and
with his glorious Power and Majesty, _who is of purer Eyes than to
behold Iniquity_[76]; who having purposed in himself to gather to him
that should worship him, and be Witnesses for him on Earth, a _chosen
People_, doth also no Doubt sanctify and purify them. For God hath no
Delight in Iniquity, but abhors Transgression; and though he regard
Man in Transgression so far as to pity him, and afford him Means to
come out of it; yet he loves him not, neither delights in him, as he is
joined thereunto. Wherefore if Man must be always joined to Sin, then
God would always be at a Distance with him; as it is written, _Isa._
lix. 2. _Your Iniquities have separated between you and your God,
and your Sins have hid his Face from you_; whereas on the contrary,
the _Saints_ are said to _partake_, even while here, _of the divine
Nature_, 1 Pet. i. 4. and to be _one Spirit with the Lord_, 1 Cor.
vi. 17. Now no unclean Thing can be so. It is expresly written, _That
there is no Communion betwixt Light and Darkness_, 2 Cor. vi. 14. But
_God_ is _Light_, and _every Sin is Darkness_ in a Measure: [Sidenote:
_Hath _God’s Wisdom_ been wanting to prepare a _Means_ to serve and
worship him _perfectly_?_] What greater _Stain_ then can there be than
this upon _God’s Wisdom_, as if he had been wanting to prepare a Means
whereby his Children might perfectly serve and worship him, or had not
provided a Way whereby they might serve him in any Thing, but that they
must withal still serve the Devil no less, yea, more than himself? For
_he that sinneth is the Servant of Sin_, Rom. vi. 16. and every Sin is
an Act of Service and Obedience to the Devil. So then if the Saints
sin daily in _Thought_, _Word_, and _Deed_, yea, if the very _Service_
they offer to God be Sin, surely they serve the Devil more than they do
God: For besides that they give the Devil many intire Services, without
Mixture of the least Grain to God, they give God not the least Service
in which the Devil hath not a large Share: And if their Prayers and all
their spiritual Performances be sinful, the Devil is as much served by
them in these as God, and in most of them much more, since they confess
that many of them are performed without the Leadings and Influence of
God’s Spirit. Now who would not account him a foolish Master among Men,
who being able to do it, and also desirous it might be so, yet would
not provide a Way whereby his Children and Servants might serve him
more intirely than his avowed Enemy, or would not guard against their
serving of him, but be so imprudent and unadvised in his Contrivance,
that whatever Way his Servants and Children served him, they should no
less, yea, often much more, serve his Enemy? What may we then think of
that Doctrine that would infer this Folly upon the _Omnipotent_ and
_Only Wise God_?

[76] Hab. 1. 13.

§. IV. [Sidenote: Proof 2. _Its Inconsistency with the _Justice of_
God._] Secondly, _It is inconsistent with the Justice of God_. For
since he requires Purity from his Children, and commands them to
abstain from every Iniquity, so frequently and precisely as shall
hereafter appear, and since his _Wrath is revealed against all
Ungodliness and Unrighteousness of Men_, it must needs follow, that
he hath capacitated Man to answer his Will, or else that he requires
more than he has given Power to perform; which is to declare him openly
_unjust_, and with the slothful Servant to be an _hard Master_. We have
elsewhere spoken of the _Injustice_ these Men ascribe to God, in making
him to _damn the Wicked_, _to whom_ they allege _he never afforded any
Means of being good_; but this is yet an Aggravation more irrational
and inconsistent, to say, _That God will not afford to those, whom he
hath chosen to be his own _(whom they confess he loveth)_ the Means to
please him_. What can follow then from so strange a Doctrine?

This _Imperfection_ in the Saints either proceeds from God or from
themselves: If it proceeds from them, it must be because they are short
in improving or making use of the Power given them, whereby they are
capable to obey; and so it is a Thing possible to them, as indeed it is
by the Help of that Power: But this our Adversaries deny: They are then
not to be blamed for their Imperfection and continuing in Sin, since it
is not possible for them to do otherwise. If it be not of themselves,
it must be of God, who hath not seen meet to allow them Grace in that
Degree to produce that Effect: And what is this but to attribute to
God the Height of Injustice, to make him require his Children to
forsake Sin, and yet not to afford them sufficient Means for so doing?
[Sidenote: _Who will give their Children a Stone instead of Bread?_]
Surely this makes God more unrighteous than wicked Men, _who if_ (as
Christ saith) _their Children require Bread of them, will not give
them a Stone; or instead of a Fish, a Serpent_. But these Men confess
we ought to seek of God Power to redeem us from Sin, and yet believe
they are never to receive such a Power; such Prayers then cannot be
in Faith, but are all vain. Is not this to make God as unjust to his
Children as _Pharaoh_ was to the _Israelites_, in requiring Brick
and not giving them Straw? But blessed be God, he deals not so with
those that truly trust in him, and wait upon him, as these Men vainly
imagine; for such faithful Ones find of a Truth that _his Grace is
sufficient for them_, and know how by his Power and Spirit to overcome
the evil One.

§. V. [Sidenote: Proof 3. _The great and principal End of Christ’s
Coming and Appearance was for the Removing of _Sin_, and to redeem
us from all _Iniquity.] _Thirdly_, This evil Doctrine is _highly
injurious to Jesus Christ, and greatly derogates from the Power and
Virtue of his Sacrifice, and renders his Coming and Ministry_, as to
the great End of it, _ineffectual_. For Christ, as for other Ends, so
principally he appeared for the Removing of Sin, for the gathering a
righteous Generation, that might serve the Lord in Purity of Mind, and
walk before him in Fear, and to bring in everlasting Righteousness,
and that evangelical Perfection which the Law could not do. Hence he
is said, _Tit._ ii. 14. _to have given himself for us, that he might
redeem us from all Iniquity, and purify unto himself a peculiar People,
zealous of good Works_. This is certainly spoken of the Saints while
upon Earth; but, contrary thereunto, these Men affirm, That _we are
never redeemed from all Iniquity_, and so make Christ’s giving of
himself for us void and ineffectual, and give the Apostle _Paul_ the
Lie plainly, by denying that _Christ purifieth to himself a peculiar
People, zealous of good Works_. How are they _zealous of good Works_,
who are ever committing evil ones? How are they a _purified People_,
that are still in Impurity, as they are that daily Sin, unless Sin be
accounted no Impurity? Moreover it is said expresly, 1 _John_ iii.
5. 8. That _for this Purpose the Son of God was manifested, that
he might destroy the Works of the Devil; and ye know that he was
manifested to take away our Sins_. But these Men make this Purpose of
none Effect; for they will not have the Son of God to _destroy the
Works of the Devil in his Children_ in this World, neither will they
at all believe that he was manifest to take away our Sins, seeing
they plead a Necessity of always living in them. And lest any should
wrest this Place of the Apostle, as if it were spoken only of taking
away the Guilt of Sin, as if it related not to this Life, the Apostle,
as if of Purpose to obviate such an Objection, adds in the following
Verses, _Whosoever abideth in him, sinneth not_, &c. I hope then they
sin not daily in Thought, Word, and Deed. _Let no Man deceive you; he
that doth Righteousness, is righteous, even as he is righteous; he
that committeth Sin, is of the Devil_; but he that sinneth daily in
Thought, Word, and Deed, committeth Sin; how comes such an one then to
be the Child of God? And if Christ was manifest to take away Sin, how
strangely do they overturn the Doctrine of Christ who deny that it is
ever taken away here? And how injurious are they to the Efficacy and
Power of Christ’s Appearance? Came not Christ to gather a People out
of Sin into Righteousness; from the Kingdom of Satan into the _Kingdom
of the dear Son of God_? And are not they that are thus gathered by
him his Servants, his Children, his Brethren, his Friends? _who as he
was, so are they to be in this World, holy, pure, and undefiled_. And
doth not Christ still watch over them, stand by them, pray for them,
and preserve them by his Power and Spirit, walk in them, and dwell
among them; [Sidenote: _The Devil dwells among the _Reprobates.]
even as the Devil, on the other Hand, doth among the reprobate ones?
How comes it then that the Servants of Christ are less his Servants
than the Devil’s are his? Or is Christ unwilling to have his Servants
throughly pure? Which were gross Blasphemy to assert, contrary to many
Scriptures. Or is he not able by his Power to preserve and enable his
Children to serve him? Which were no less blasphemous to affirm of him,
concerning whom the Scriptures declare, That he has _overcome Sin,
Death, Hell, and the Grave, and triumphed over them openly, and that
all Power in Heaven and Earth is given to him_. But certainly if the
Saints sin daily in Thought, Word, and Deed, as these Men assert, they
serve the Devil daily, and are subject to his Power; and so he prevails
more than Christ doth, and holds the Servants of Christ in Bondage,
whether Christ will or not. But how greatly then doth it contradict
the End of Christ’s Coming? as it is expressed by the Apostle, _Ephes._
v. 25, 26, 27. _Even as Christ also loved the Church, and gave himself
for it, that he might sanctify and cleanse it with the Washing of Water
by the Word: That he might present it to himself a glorious Church,
not having Spot or Wrinkle_, or any such Thing, _but that it should be
holy, and without Blemish_. Now if Christ hath really thus answered
the Thing he came for, then the Members of this Church are not always
sinning in Thought, Word, and Deed, or there is no Difference betwixt
being sanctified and unsanctified, clean and unclean, holy and unholy,
being daily blemished with Sin, and being without Blemish.

§. VI. [Sidenote: Proof 4.] [Sidenote: Pastors, Teachers_, and_
Scriptures _are given for perfecting of the Saints._] Fourthly, This
Doctrine renders _the Work of the Ministry_, _the Preaching of the
Word_, _the Writing of the Scripture_, _and the Prayers of holy Men_,
_altogether useless and ineffectual_. As to the first, _Ephes._ iv. 11.
_Pastors_ and _Teachers_ are said to be _given for the Perfection of
the Saints_, &c. _until we all come in the Unity of the Faith, and of
the Knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect Man, unto a Measure of
the Stature of the Fulness of Christ_. Now if there be a Necessity of
sinning daily, and in all Things, then there can be no Perfection; for
such as do so cannot be esteemed perfect. And if for effectuating this
Perfection in the Saints the Ministry be appointed and disposed of God,
do not such as deny the Possibility hereof render the Ministry useless
and of no Profit? Seeing there can be no other true Use assigned, but
to lead People out of Sin into Righteousness. If so be these Ministers
assure us that we need never expect to be delivered from it, do not
they render their own Work needless? What needs Preaching against
Sin, for the reproving of which all Preaching is, if it can never be
forsaken? Our Adversaries are Exalters of the Scriptures in Words, much
crying up their Usefulness and Perfection: Now the Apostle tells us,
2 _Tim._ iii. 17. That the _Scriptures are for making the Man of God
perfect_; and if this be denied to be attainable in this Life, then the
Scriptures are of no Profit; for in the other Life we shall not have
use for them. It renders the Prayers of the Saints altogether useless,
seeing themselves do confess they ought to pray daily _that God would
deliver them from Evil, and free them from Sin, by the Help of his
Spirit and Grace, while in this World_. But though we might suppose
this Absurdity to follow, _that their Prayers are without Faith_, yet
were not that so much, if it did not infer the like upon the holy
Apostles, who prayed earnestly for this End, and therefore no Doubt
believed it attainable, _Col._ iv. 12. _Labouring fervently for you in
Prayers, that ye may stand perfect_, &c. 1 Thess. iii. 13. and v. 23,

§. VII. [Sidenote: Proof 5.] [Sidenote: Darkness _and_ Light, Sin
_and_ Righteousness_, inconsistent together._] But _Fifthly_, This
Doctrine is _contrary to common Reason and Sense_. For the two opposite
_Principles_, whereof the one rules in the Children of _Darkness_,
the other in the Children of _Light_, are _Sin_ and _Righteousness_;
and as they are respectively leavened and actuated by them, so
they are accounted either as reprobated or justified, seeing it is
[77]_Abomination in the Sight of God, either to justify the Wicked, or
condemn the Just_. Now to say that Men cannot be so leavened by the one
as to be delivered from the other, is in plain Words to affirm, that
_Sin_ and _Righteousness_ are consistent; and that a Man may be truly
termed _righteous_, though he be daily _sinning_ in every Thing he
doth; and then what Difference betwixt _Good_ and _Evil_? Is not this
to fall into that great Abomination of putting _Light_ for _Darkness_?
and calling _Good Evil_, and _Evil Good_? Since they say _the very best
Actions of God’s Children are defiled and polluted, and that those
that sin daily in Thought, Word, and Deed are good Men and Women, the
Saints and holy Servants of the holy pure God_. Can there be any Thing
more repugnant than this to common Reason? Since the _Subject_ is
still denominated from that _Accident_ that doth most influence it; as
a Wall is called _White_ when there is much _Whiteness_, and _Black_
when there is much _Blackness_, and such like; but when there is more
Unrighteousness in a Man than Righteousness, that Man ought rather to
be denominated unrighteous than righteous. [Sidenote: _If all _daily
sin_, where is the _righteous Man_ then spoken of in Scripture?_] Then
surely if every Man sin daily in Thought, Word, and Deed, and that in
his Sins there is no Righteousness at all, and that all his righteous
Actions are polluted and mixed with Sin, then there is in every Man
more Unrighteousness than Righteousness; and so no Man ought to be
called _righteous_, no Man can be said to be _sanctified_ or _washed_.
_Where are then the Children of God? Where are the purified Ones?
Where are they who were sometimes unholy, but now holy; that sometimes
were Darkness, but now are Light in the Lord?_ There can none such
be found then at this Rate, except that Unrighteousness be esteemed
so: And is not this to fall into that Abomination above-mentioned of
_justifying the Ungodly_? [Sidenote: _The Blasphemy of the_ Ranters _or_
Libertines.] This certainly lands in that horrid Blasphemy of the
_Ranters_, that affirm _there is no Difference betwixt Good and Evil,
and that all is one in the Sight of God_. I could shew many more gross
Absurdities, evil Consequences, and manifest Contradictions implied
in this _sinful Doctrine_; but this may suffice at present, by which
also in a good Measure the Proof of the Truth we affirm is advanced.
Yet nevertheless, for the further evidencing of it, I shall proceed to
the second Thing proposed by me, to wit, to prove this from several
Testimonies of the Holy Scriptures.

[77] Prov. 17. 15.

§. VIII. [Sidenote: Sect. II.] [Sidenote: Proof 1.] And _First_, I
prove it from the peremptory positive Command of _Christ_ and the
_Apostles_, seeing this is a Maxim engraven in every Man’s Heart
naturally, _That no Man is bound to do that which is impossible_: Since
then _Christ_ and his _Apostles_ have commanded us to keep all the
_Commandments_, and to be perfect in this Respect, it is possible for
us so to do. [Sidenote: _Be ye perfect, _&c._ Keep my Commandments._]
Now that this is thus commanded without any Commentary or Consequence,
is evidently apparent from these plain Testimonies, _Matt._ v. 48, and
vii. 21. _John_ xiii. 17. 1 _Cor._ vii. 19. 2 _Cor._ xiii. 11. 1 _John_
ii. 3, 4, 5, 6. and iii. 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10. These Scriptures
intimate a positive Command for it; they declare the absolute Necessity
of it; and therefore, as if they had purposely been written to answer
the Objections of our _Opposers_, they shew the Folly of those that
will esteem themselves _Children_ or _Friends_ of _God_, while they do

[Sidenote: Proof 2.] [Sidenote: _The Possibility of it._] _Secondly_,
It is possible, because we receive the Gospel and Law thereof for that
Effect; and it is expresly promised to us, as we are under Grace,
as appears by these Scriptures, _Rom._ iv. 14. _Sin shall not have
Dominion over you; for ye are not under the Law, but under Grace_:
And _Rom._ viii. 3. _For what the Law could not do, in that it was
weak through the Flesh, God sending his own Son_, &c. _that the
Righteousness of the Law might be fulfilled in us_, &c. [Sidenote: _The
Difference of the_ Law _and_ Gospel.] For if this were not a Condition
both requisite, necessary, and attainable under the Gospel, there were
no Difference betwixt the _Bringing in of a better Hope_, and the _Law
which made nothing perfect_; neither betwixt those which are under
the _Gospel_, or who under the _Law_ enjoyed and walked in the Life
of the Gospel and mere _Legalists_. Whereas the Apostle, throughout
the whole _Sixth_ to the _Romans_, argues not only the _Possibility_
but the _Necessity_ of being free from Sin, from their being under the
_Gospel_, and under _Grace_, and not under the _Law_; and therefore
states himself and those to whom he wrote in that Condition in these
_Verses_, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7. and therefore in the 11, 12, 13, 16, 17, 18
_Verses_, he argues both the Possibility and Necessity of this _Freedom
from Sin_ almost in the same Manner we did a little before; and in the
22d he declares them in Measure to have attained this Condition in
these Words, _But now being made free from Sin, and become Servants
to God, ye have your Fruit unto Holiness, and the End everlasting
Life_. [Sidenote: Perfection _and_ Freedom _from_ Sin _attained and
made possible by the Gospel._] And as this Perfection or Freedom from
Sin is attained and made possible where the Gospel and inward Law of
the Spirit is received and known, so the Ignorance hereof has been
and is an Occasion of opposing this Truth. For Man not minding the
_Light_ or _Law within his Heart_, which not only discovers Sin, but
leads out of it, and so being a Stranger to the new Life and Birth
that is born of God, which naturally does his Will, and cannot of its
own Nature transgress the Commandments of God, doth, I say, in his
natural State look at the Commandments as they are without him in the
Letter; [Sidenote: _The Letter _kills_, and maketh not _alive.] and
finding himself reproved and convicted, is by the Letter killed, but
not made alive. So Man, finding himself wounded, and not applying
himself inwardly to that which can heal, labours in his own Will after
a Conformity to the Law as it is without him, which he can never
obtain, but finds the more he wrestles, the more he falleth short. So
this is the _Jew_ still in Effect, with his carnal Commandment, with
the _Law_ without, in the _first Covenant State_, which _makes not
the Comers thereunto perfect, as pertaining to the Conscience_, Heb.
ix. 9. though they may have here a Notion of _Christianity_, and an
external Faith in _Christ_. This has made them strain and wrest the
Scriptures for an _imputative Righteousness_ wholly without them, to
cover their Impurities; and this hath made them imagine an Acceptance
with God possible, though they suppose it impossible ever to obey
Christ’s Commands. But alas! O deceived Souls! that will not avail
in the Day wherein _God will judge every Man according to his Work,
whether good or bad_. It will not save thee to say, it was necessary
for thee to sin daily in Thought, Word, and Deed; for such as do so
have certainly obeyed Unrighteousness: And what is provided for such
but _Tribulation and Anguish_, _Indignation and Wrath_; even as _Glory,
Honour, and Peace, Immortality and eternal Life to such as have done
Good, and patiently continued in Well-doing_. So then, if thou desirest
to know this Perfection and Freedom from Sin possible for thee, turn
thy Mind to the _Light and spiritual Law of Christ in the Heart_, and
suffer the Reproofs thereof; bear the Judgment and Indignation of
God upon the unrighteous Part in thee as therein is revealed, which
Christ hath made tolerable for thee, and so suffer _Judgment in thee_
to be _brought forth into Victory_, and thus come to partake of the
_Fellowship_ of _Christ’s Sufferings_, and be made _conformable unto
his Death_, [Sidenote: _How we partake of Christ’s Sufferings, and
are made conformable unto his Death._] that thou mayest feel thyself
_crucified with him to the_ World _by the Power of his Cross in thee_;
so that that Life that sometimes was alive in thee to this World, and
the Love and Lusts thereof, may die, and a new Life be raised, by which
thou mayest live henceforward to God, and not to or for thyself; and
with the Apostle thou mayest say, _Gal._ ii. 20. _It is no more I,
but Christ alive in me_; and then thou wilt be a _Christian indeed_,
and not in _Name_ only, as too many are; then thou wilt know what
it is to have _put off the old Man with his Deeds_, who indeed sins
daily in Thought, Word, and Deed; and to have _put on the new Man,
that it renewed in Holiness, after the Image of him that hath created
him_, Ephes. iv. 24. and thou wilt witness thyself to be [78]_God’s
Workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good Works_, and so not to
sin always. And to this new Man _Christ’s Yoke is easy, and his Burden
is light_; though it be heavy to the _old Adam_; yea, the _Commandments
of God_ are not unto this Man _grievous_; for it is his _Meat and
Drink_ to be found _fulfilling the Will of God_.

[78] Matt. xi. 30. 1 John v. 3.

[Sidenote: Proof 3.] [Sidenote: _Many have attained Perfection._]
_Lastly_, This Perfection or Freedom from Sin is possible, because many
have attained it, according to the express Testimony of the Scripture;
some before the Law, and some under the Law, through witnessing and
partaking of the Benefit and Effect of the Gospel, and much more many
under the Gospel. [Sidenote: Enoch _walked with God, and was_ perfect.]
As _first_, It is written of _Enoch_, _Gen._ v. 22, 24. that he _walked
with God_, which no Man while sinning can; nor doth the Scripture
record any Failing of his. It is said of _Noah_, _Gen._ vi. 9. and
of _Job_ i. 8. and of _Zacharias_ and _Elizabeth_, _Luke_ i. 6. that
_they were perfect_; but under the Gospel, besides that of the _Romans_
above-mentioned, see what the Apostle saith of many Saints in general,
_Ephes._ ii. 4, 5, 6. _But God, who is rich in Mercy, for his great
Love wherewith he hath loved us, even when we were dead in Sins, hath
quickened us together with Christ, by Grace ye are saved; and hath
raised us up together, and made us sit together in heavenly Places in
Christ Jesus_ &c. I judge while they were sitting in these _heavenly
Places_, they could not be daily sinning in Thought, Word, and Deed;
neither were all their Works which they did there as _filthy Rags_, or
as a _menstruous Garment_. See what is further said to the _Hebrews_,
xii. 22, 23. _Spirits of just Men made perfect_. And to conclude, let
that of the _Revelations_, xiv. 1, 2, 3, 4, 5. be considered, where
though their being _found without Fault_ be spoken in the present
Time, yet it is not without Respect to their Innocency while upon
Earth; and their being _redeemed from among Men, and no Guile found in
their Mouth_, is expresly mentioned in the Time past. [Sidenote: Sect
III.] But I shall proceed now, in the _Third Place_, to answer the
_Objections_, which indeed are the Arguments of our Opposers.

§. IX. [Sidenote: Obj. 1.] I shall begin with their chief and great
Argument, which is the Words of the Apostle, 1 John i. 8. _If we say
that we have no Sin_, _we deceive ourselves, and the Truth is not in
us_. This they think invincible.

[Sidenote: _Answ. 1._] But is it not strange to see Men so blinded
with Partiality? How many Scriptures tenfold more plain do they
reject, and yet stick so tenaciously to this, that can receive so many
Answers? As First, [_If we say we have no Sin_, &c.] will not import
the Apostle himself to be included. [Sidenote: _If we say we have no
Sin_, &c. objected.] Sometimes the Scripture useth this Manner of
Expression when the Person speaking cannot be included; which Manner
of Speech the _Grammarians_ call _Metaschematismus_. Thus _James_ iii.
9, 10. speaking of the _Tongue_, saith, _Therewith bless we God, and
therewith curse we Men_; adding, _These Things ought not so to be_.
Who from this will conclude that the Apostle was one of those Cursers?
[Sidenote: _Answ. 2._] But _Secondly_, This Objection hitteth not the
Matter; he saith not, _We sin daily in Thought, Word, and Deed_; far
less that the _very good Works which God works in us by his Spirit are
Sin_: Yea, the very next Verse clearly shews, that upon _Confession_
and _Repentance_ we are not only _forgiven_, but also _cleansed_;
_He is faithful to forgive us our Sins, and to cleanse us from all
Unrighteousness_. Here is both a Forgiveness and Removing of the Guilt,
and a Cleansing or Removing of the Filth; for to make _Forgiveness_ and
_Cleansing_ to belong both to the Removing of the _Guilt_, as there is
no Reason for it from the Text, so it were a most violent forcing of
the Words, and would imply a needless Tautology. The Apostle having
shewn how that not the Guilt only, but even the Filth also of Sin is
removed, subsumes his Words in the Time past in the 10th Verse, _If we
say we have not sinned, we make him a Liar_. [Sidenote: _Answ. 3._]
_Thirdly_, As _Augustine_ well observed, in his Exposition upon the
Epistle to the _Galatians_, _It is one Thing not to sin, and another
Thing not to have Sin_. [Sidenote: _It is one Thing_, not to sin, _and
another Thing_ not to have Sin.] The Apostle’s Words are not, _If we
say we sin not, or commit not Sin daily, _but_ if we say we have no
Sin_: And betwixt these two there is a manifest Difference; for in
respect all have _sinned_, as we freely acknowledge, all may be said
in a Sense to have _Sin_. Again, _Sin_ may be taken for the _Seed of
Sin_, which may be in those that are redeemed from _actual Sinning_;
but as to the Temptations and Provocations proceeding from it being
resisted by the Servants of God, and not yielded to, they are the
Devil’s Sin that tempteth, not the Man’s that is preserved. [Sidenote:
_Answ. 4._] _Fourthly_, This being considered, as also how positive and
plain once and again the same Apostle is in that very Epistle, as in
divers Places above cited, is it equal or rational to strain this one
Place, presently after so qualified and subsumed in the _Time past_, to
contradict not only other positive Expressions of his, but the whole
Tendency of his Epistle, and of the rest of the holy Commands and
Precepts of the Scripture?

[Sidenote: Obj. 2.] _Secondly_, Their second Objection is from two
Places of Scripture, much of one Signification: The one is, 1 _Kings_
viii. 46. _For there is no Man that sinneth not_. The other is,
_Eccles._ vii. 20. _For there is not a just Man upon Earth, that doeth
Good, and sinneth not_.

[Sidenote: _Answ._] I answer, _First_, These affirm nothing of a daily
and continual _Sinning_, so as never to be redeemed from it; but only
that all have _sinned_, or that there is none that doth not _sin_,
though not always, so as never to cease to _sin_; and in this lies the
Question. Yea, in that Place of the _Kings_ he speaks within two Verses
of the returning of such _with all their Souls and Hearts_; which
implies a Possibility of leaving off Sin. [Sidenote: _Diversity of
Seasons and Dispensations_ respected.] _Secondly_, There is a Respect
to be had to the Seasons and Dispensations; for if it should be granted
that in _Solomon_’s Time there were none that _sinned not_, it will
not follow that there are none such now, or that it is a Thing not
now attainable by the Grace of God under the Gospel: For _A non esse
ad non posse non valet sequela_. And _Lastly_, This whole Objection
hangs upon a false Interpretation; for the Hebrew Word [Hebrew: ycht':
יחטא] may be read in the _Potential Mood_, thus, _There is no Man who
may not sin_, as well as in the _Indicative_: So both the old Latin,
_Junius_ and _Tremellius_, and _Vatablus_ have it; and the same Word is
so used, _Psalm_ cxix. 11. _I have hid thy Word in my Heart_, [Hebrew:
lt'z l' 'cht' lk: לטעז לא אחטא לך׃] that is to say, _That I may not sin
against thee_, in the _Potential Mood_, and not in the _Indicative_;
which being more answerable to the universal Scope of the Scriptures,
the Testimony of the Truth, and the Sense almost of all Interpreters,
doubtless ought to be so understood, and the other _Interpretation_
rejected as _spurious_.

[Sidenote: Obj. 3.] _Thirdly_, They object some Expressions of the
Apostle _Paul_, Rom. viii. 19. _For the Good that I would, I do not;
but the Evil which I would not, that I do_. And Ver. 24. _O wretched
Man that I am! who shall deliver me from the Body of this Death?_

[Sidenote: _Answ._] I answer, This Place infers nothing, unless it were
apparent that the Apostle here were speaking of his own Condition, and
not rather in the Person of others, or what he himself had sometimes
borne; which is frequent in Scripture, as in the Case of cursing,
in _James_ before mentioned. But there is nothing in the Text that
doth clearly signify the Apostle to be speaking of himself, or of
a Condition he was then under, or was always to be under; yea, on
the Contrary, in the former Chapter, as afore is at large shewn, he
declares, they were _dead to Sin_; demanding _how such should yet live
any longer therein_? [Sidenote: Paul _personates the _Wretched Man_,
to shew them the_ Redeemer.] _Secondly_, It appears that the Apostle
personated one not yet come to a spiritual Condition, in that he saith,
Ver. 14. _But I am carnal, sold under Sin._ Now is it to be imagined,
that the Apostle _Paul_, as to his own proper Condition, when he wrote
that _Epistle_, was a _carnal Man_, who in _Chap._ i. testifies of
himself, That he was _separated to be an Apostle, capable to impart to
the _Romans_ spiritual Gifts_; and Chap. viii. Ver. 2. That _the Law
of the Spirit of Life in Christ Jesus had made him free from the Law
of Sin and Death_? So then he was not _carnal_. And seeing there are
spiritual Men in this Life, as our Adversaries will not deny, and is
intimated through the whole viiith Chapter to the _Romans_, it will
not be denied but the Apostle was one of them: So then as his calling
himself _carnal_ in Chap. vii. cannot be understood of his own proper
State, neither can the rest of what he speaks there of that Kind be
so understood: Yea after, Ver. 24. where he makes that Exclamation,
he adds in the next Verse, _I thank God, through Jesus Christ our
Lord_; signifying that by him he witnessed Deliverance; and so goeth
on, shewing how he had obtained it in the next Chapter, _viz._ viii.
Ver. 35. _Who shall separate us from the Love of Christ?_ And Ver.
37. _But in all these Things we are more than Conquerors_: And in the
last Verse, _Nothing shall be able to separate us_, &c. But wherever
there is a continuing in Sin, there is a Separation in some Degree,
seeing every _Sin is contrary to God_, and [Greek: anomia: ανομια], i.
e. _a Transgression of the Law_, 1 John iii. 4. [Sidenote: _Whom Sin
has conquered, he is no Conqueror._] and whoever committeth the least
Sin, is overcome of it, and so in that Respect is not a Conqueror, but
conquered. This Condition then, which the Apostle plainly testified
he with some others had obtained, could not consist with continual
remaining and abiding in Sin.

[Sidenote: Obj. 4.] _Fourthly_, They object the _Faults and Sins of
several eminent Saints, as _Noah_, _David_, &c._

[Sidenote: _Answ._] I answer, That doth not at all prove the Case: For
the Question is not, _Whether good Men may not fall into Sin_, which
is not denied; but _whether it be not possible for them not to sin_?
[Sidenote: _Can they that _sin_, be never freed from _Sin.] It will
not follow because these Men _sinned_, that therefore they were never
_free of Sin_, but always _sinned_: For at this Rate of arguing, it
might be urged, according to this Rule (_Contrariorum par ratio_, i.
e. _The Reason of Contraries is alike_) that if, because a good Man
hath sinned once or twice, he can never be free from Sin, but must
always be daily and continually a Sinner all his Life long; then by the
Rule of _Contraries_, if a wicked Man have done Good once or twice, he
can never be free from Righteousness, but must always be a righteous
Man all his Life-time: Which as it is most absurd in itself, so it is
contrary to the plain Testimony of the Scripture, _Ezek._ xxxiii. 12.
to 18.

[Sidenote: Obj.] _Lastly_, They object, _That if Perfection or Freedom
from Sin be attainable, this will render Mortification of Sin useless,
and make the Blood of Christ of no Service to us, neither need we any
more pray for Forgiveness of Sins_.

[Sidenote: _Answ._] I answer, I had almost omitted this _Objection_,
because of the manifest Absurdity of it: For can Mortification of
Sin be useless, where the End of it is obtained? Seeing there is no
attaining of this Perfection but by Mortification. [Sidenote: _Who
fights and not in Hopes to overcome his_ Foe?] Doth the Hope and
Belief of overcoming render the Fight unnecessary? Let rational Men
judge which hath most Sense in it, to say as our Adversaries do, _It
is necessary that we fight and wrestle, but we must never think of
overcoming, we must resolve still to be overcome_; or to say, _Let us
fight, because we may overcome_? Whether do such as believe they may
be cleansed by it, or those that believe they can never be cleansed
by it, render the _Blood of Christ_ most effectual? If two Men were
both grievously diseased, and applied themselves to a Physician for
Remedy, which of those do most commend the Physician and his Cure, he
that believeth he may be cured by him, and as he feels himself cured,
confesseth that he is so, and so can say this is a skilful Physician,
this is a good Medicine, behold I am made whole by it; or he that never
is cured, nor ever believes that he can so long as he lives? [Sidenote:
_Praying for_ Forgiveness of Sins.] As for praying for _Forgiveness_,
we deny it not; for that _all have sinned_, and therefore all need to
pray that their _Sins past_ may be blotted out, and that they may be
daily preserved from sinning. And if hoping or believing to be made
_free from Sin_ hinders praying for _Forgiveness of Sin_, it would
follow by the same Inference that Men ought not to forsake Murder,
Adultery, or any of these gross Evils, seeing the more Men are sinful,
the more plentiful Occasion there would be of asking Forgiveness
of Sin, and the more Work for Mortification. But the Apostle had
sufficiently refuted such sin-pleasing Cavils in these Words, _Rom._
vi. 1, 2. _Shall we continue in Sin that Grace may abound? God forbid._

But _Lastly_, It may be easily answered, by a Retortion to those that
press this from the Words of the Lord’s Prayer, _forgive us our Debts_,
that this militates no less against perfect Justification than against
perfect Sanctification: For if all the Saints, the least as well as the
greatest, be perfectly justified in that very Hour wherein they are
converted, as our Adversaries will have it, then they have Remission of
Sins long before they die. May it not then be said to them, What Need
have ye to pray for Remission of Sin, who are already justified, whose
Sins are long ago forgiven, both past and to come?

§. X. [Sidenote: _Testimonies of the Fathers, concerning _Perfection_,
or _Freedom from Sin.] But this may suffice: Concerning this
Possibility _Jerome_ speaks clearly enough, _Lib. 3. adver. Pelagium_,
“This we also say, that a Man may not sin, if he will, for a Time
and Place, according to his bodily Weakness, so long as his Mind is
intent, so long as the Cords of the _Cithara_ relax not by any Vice;”
[Sidenote: Jerome.] and again in the same Book, “Which is that that
I said, that it is put in our Power (to wit, being helped by the
Grace of God) either to sin or not to sin.” For this was the Error of
_Pelagius_, which we indeed reject and abhor, and which the _Fathers_
deservedly withstood, “That Man by his natural Strength, without the
Help of God’s Grace, could attain to that State so as not to sin.”
[Sidenote: Augustine.] And _Augustine_ himself, a great Opposer of
the _Pelagian_ Heresy, did not deny this Possibility as attainable by
the Help of God’s Grace, as in his Book de _Spiritu & Literâ_, Cap.
2. and his Book _de Naturâ & Gratiâ_ against _Pelagius_, Cap. 42,
50, 60, and 63. _de Gestis Concilii Palæstini_, Cap. 7. & 2. and _de
Peccato Originali_, Lib. 2. Cap. 2. [Sidenote: Gelasius.] _Gelasius_
also, in his Disputation against _Pelagius_, saith, “But if any affirm
that this may be given to some Saints in this Life, not by the Power
of Man’s Strength, but by the Grace of God, he doth well to think
so confidently, and hope it faithfully; for by this Gift of God all
Things are possible.” [Sidenote: _That by the _Gift of God_ all Things
are possible._] That this was the common Opinion of the _Fathers_,
appears from the Words of the _Aszansic Council_, Canon the last, “We
believe also this according to the _Catholick Faith_, that all who are
baptized through Grace by Baptism received, and Christ helping them,
and co-working, may and ought to do whatsoever belongs to Salvation, if
they will faithfully labour.”

§. XI. [Sidenote: Conclusion.] Blessed then are they that believe in
him, who is both able and willing to deliver as many as come to him
through true Repentance from all Sin, and do not resolve, as these Men
do, to be the Devil’s Servants all their Life-time, but daily go on
forsaking [Sidenote: Phil. 3. 14. _Press forward to the Mark, for the
_Prize_, and Overcoming._] Unrighteousness, and forgetting those Things
that are behind, _press forward toward the Mark, for the Prize of the
high Calling of God in Christ Jesus_; such shall not find their Faith
and Confidence to be in vain, but in due Time shall be made Conquerors
through him in whom they have believed; and so overcoming, _shall be
established as Pillars in the House of God, so as they shall go no more
out_, Rev. iii. 12.


Concerning PERSEVERANCE, and the Possibility of FALLING from GRACE.

_Although this Gift and inward Grace of God be sufficient to work out
    Salvation, yet in those in whom it is resisted it both may and
    doth become their Condemnation. Moreover they in whose Hearts it
    hath wrought in Part to purify and sanctify them in order to their
    further Perfection, may, by Disobedience, fall from it, _turn
    it to Wantonness_, Jude 4. _make Shipwreck of Faith_, _1_ Tim.
    _i. 19. and after having tasted the heavenly Gift, and been made
    Partakers of the Holy Ghost, again fall away_, Heb. _vi. 4, 5, 6._
    yet such an Increase and Stability in the Truth may in this Life be
    attained, from which there can be no total Apostasy._

§. I. The first Sentence of this Proposition hath already been treated
of in the _fifth_ and _sixth Propositions_, where it hath been shewn
that that _Light_ which is given for _Life_ and _Salvation_ becomes the
Condemnation of those that refuse it, and therefore is already proved
in those Places, where I did demonstrate the Possibility of Man’s
resisting the Grace and Spirit of God; and indeed it is so apparent in
the Scriptures, that it cannot be denied by such as will but seriously
consider these Testimonies, _Prov._ i. 24, 25, 26. _John_ iii. 18, 19.
2 _Thess._ ii. 11, 12. _Acts_ vii. 51. & xiii. 46. _Rom._ i. 18. As for
the other Part of it, that _they in whom this Grace may have wrought in
a good Measure in order to purify and sanctify them, tending to their
further Perfection, may afterwards, through Disobedience, fall away_,
&c. The Testimonies of the Scripture included in the Proposition itself
are sufficient to prove it to Men of unbiassed Judgment; but because as
to this Part our Cause is common with many other _Protestants_, I shall
be the more brief in it: For it is not my Design to do that which is
done already, neither do I covet to appear _knowing_ by writing much;
but simply purpose to present to the World a faithful Account of our
Principles, and briefly to let them understand what we have to say for

§. II. [Sidenote: I. _A Falling from Grace by Disobedience_ evinced.]
From these Scriptures then included in the Proposition, not to mention
many more which might be urged, I argue thus:

[Sidenote: Arg. 1.] _If Men may turn the _Grace of God_ into
Wantonness, then they must once have had it_:

But the First is true: Therefore also the Second.

[Sidenote: Arg. 2.] _If Men may make _Shipwreck of Faith_, they must
once have had it; Neither could they ever have had true_ Faith _without
the Grace of God_:

But the First is true: Therefore also the Last.

[Sidenote: Arg. 3.] _If Men may have tasted of the _heavenly Gift_, and
been made Partakers of the _Holy Spirit_, and afterwards _fall away_,
they must needs have known in Measure the Operation of God’s saving
Grace and Spirit, without which no Man could taste the heavenly Gift,
nor yet partake of the Holy Spirit_:

But the First is true: Therefore also the Last.

[Sidenote: II. _The Doctrine of _Election_ and _Reprobation_ is
inconsistent with Preaching, and daily Exhortation._] _Secondly_,
Seeing the contrary Doctrine is built upon this false Hypothesis,
That _Grace is not given for Salvation to any, but to a certain elect
Number, which cannot lose it, and that all the rest of Mankind, by
an _absolute Decree,_ are debarred from Grace and Salvation_; that
being destroyed, this falls to the Ground. Now as that Doctrine of
theirs is wholly inconsistent with the daily Practice of those that
preach it, in that they exhort People to believe and be saved, while
in the mean Time, if they belong to the Decree of Reprobation, it
is simply impossible for them so to do; and if to the Decree of
Election, it is needless, seeing it is as impossible to them to miss
of it, as hath been before demonstrated. So also in this Matter of
_Perseverance_, their Practice and Principle are no less inconsistent
and contradictory. For while they daily exhort People to be _faithful
to the End_, shewing them if they continue not, they shall be _cut
off_, and fall short of the _Reward_; which is very true, but no less
inconsistent with that Doctrine that affirms _there is no Hazard,
because no Possibility of departing from the least Measure of true
Grace_; which if true, it is to no Purpose to beseech them to _stand_,
to whom God hath made it impossible to _fall_. I shall not longer
insist upon the Probation of this, seeing what is said may suffice to
answer my Design; and that the Thing is also abundantly proved by many
of the same Judgment. That this was the Doctrine of the _primitive
Protestants_ thence appears, that the _Augustine Confession_ condemns
it as an _Error_ of the _Anabaptists_, to say, _That they who once are
justified, cannot lose the Holy Spirit_. Many such like Sayings are to
be found in the common Places of _Philip Melancthon_. [Sidenote: _The
Opinion of the _Fathers_ concerning _falling from Grace.] _Vossius_,
in his _Pelagian_ History, Lib. 6. testifies, _That this was the common
Opinion of the Fathers_. In the Confirmation of the _twelfth Thesis_,
Page 587. he hath these Words: “That this which we have said was the
common Sentiment of Antiquity, those at present can only deny, who
otherwise perhaps are Men not unlearned, but nevertheless in Antiquity
altogether Strangers, _&c._” These Things thus observed, I come to the
_Objections_ of our Opposers.

§. III. [Sidenote: Obj. 1.] _First_, They allege, _That those Places
mentioned of making _Shipwreck of Faith_, are only to be understood of
seeming Faith, and not of a real true Faith_.

[Sidenote: _Answ._] [Sidenote: _A good and evil Conscience._] This
_Objection_ is very weak, and apparently contrary to the Text, 1 _Tim._
i. 19. where the Apostle addeth to _Faith_ a _good Conscience_, by
way of Complaint; whereas if their _Faith_ had been only seeming and
hypocritical, the Men had been better without it than with it; neither
had they been worthy of Blame for losing that which in itself was Evil.
But the Apostle expresly adds [_and of a good Conscience_,] which shews
it was real; neither can it be supposed that Men could truly attain a
_good Conscience_ without the Operation of _God’s saving Grace_; far
less that a _good Conscience_ doth consist with a seeming false and
hypocritical Faith. Again, these Places of the Apostle being spoken by
way of Regret, clearly import that these Attainments they had fallen
from were good and real, not false and deceitful, else he would not
have regretted their falling from them; and so he saith positively,
_They tasted of the heavenly Gift, and were made Partakers of the
Holy Ghost_, &c. not that they seemed to be so, which sheweth this
_Objection_ is very frivolous.

[Sidenote: Obj. 2.] _Secondly_, They allege, _Phil._ i. 6. _Being
confident of this very Thing, that he which hath begun a good Work in
you will perform it until the Day of Jesus Christ_, &c. and 1 _Pet._ i.
5. _Who are kept by the Power of God through Faith unto Salvation._

[Sidenote: _Answ._] These Scriptures, as they do not affirm any Thing
positively contrary to us, so they cannot be understood otherwise than
as the Condition is performed upon our Part, [Sidenote: Salvation
_is proposed upon certain Conditions by us to be performed._] seeing
_Salvation_ is no otherways proposed there but upon certain necessary
Conditions to be performed by us, as hath been above proved, and as
our Adversaries also acknowledge, as _Rom._ viii. 13. _For if ye live
after the Flesh, ye shall die; but if ye through the Spirit do mortify
the Deeds of the Body, ye shall live_. And _Heb._ iii. 14. _We are
made Partakers of Christ, if we hold the Beginning of our Confidence
stedfast unto the End_. For if these Places of the Scripture upon
which they build their Objections were to be admitted without these
Conditions, it would manifestly overturn the whole Tenor of their
Exhortations throughout all their Writings. Some other _Objections_
there are of the same Nature, which are solved by the same Answers,
which also, because largely treated of by others, I omit, to come to
that Testimony of the Truth which is more especially ours in this
Matter, and is contained in the latter Part of the Proposition in these
Words: _Yet such an Increase and Stability in the Truth may in this
Life be attained, from which there cannot be a total Apostasy_.

§. IV. As in the Explanation of the _fifth_ and _sixth Proposition_ I
observed, that some that had denied the Errors of others concerning
_Reprobation_, and affirmed the _Universality of Christ’s Death_, did
notwithstanding fall short in sufficiently holding forth the Truth, and
so gave the contrary Party Occasion by their Defects to be strengthened
in their Errors, so it may be said in this Case. [Sidenote: _The two
Extremes some run into, by asserting a final_ Falling _or_ not Falling
_from Grace impossible._] As upon the one Hand they err who affirm,
_That the least Degree of true and saving Grace cannot be fallen from_,
so do they err upon the other Hand that deny any such _Stability_ to be
attained _from which there cannot be a total and final Apostasy_. And
betwixt these two extremes lieth the Truth apparent in the Scriptures,
which God hath revealed unto us by the Testimony of his Spirit, and
which also we are made sensible of by our own Experience. And even as
in the former Controversy was observed, so also in this, the Defence of
Truth will readily appear to such as seriously weigh the Matter; for
the Arguments upon both Hands, rightly applied, will as to this hold
good; and the Objections, which are strong as they are respectively
urged against the two opposite _false Opinions_, are here easily
solved, by the Establishing of this _Truth_. For all the Arguments
which these allege that affirm, _There can be no falling away_, may
well be received upon the one Part, as of those who have attained
to this Stability and Establishment, and their Objections solved
by this Confession; so upon the other Hand, the Arguments alleged
from Scripture Testimonies by those that affirm _the Possibility of
falling away_ may well be received of such as are not come to this
Establishment, though having attained a Measure of true Grace. Thus
then the contrary Batterings of Our Adversaries, who miss the Truth,
do concur the more strongly to establish it, while they are destroying
each other. But lest this may not seem to suffice to satisfy such as
judge it _always possible for the best of Men before they die to fall
away_, I shall add, for the Proof of it, some brief Considerations from
some few Testimonies of the Scripture.

§. V. [Sidenote: I.] [Sidenote: Watchfulness _and_ Diligence _is of
indispensible Necessity to all._] And _First_, I freely acknowledge
that it is good for all to be humble, and in this Respect not over
confident, so as to lean to this, to foster themselves in Iniquity, or
lie down in Security, as if they had attained this Condition, seeing
_Watchfulness_ and _Diligence_ is of _indispensible Necessity_ to all
mortal Men, so long as they breathe in this World; for God will have
this to be the constant Practice of a _Christian_, that thereby he
may be the more fit to serve him, and better armed against all the
Temptations of the Enemy. For since _the Wages of Sin is Death_, there
is no Man, while he sinneth, and is subject thereunto, but may lawfully
suppose himself capable of perishing. Hence the Apostle _Paul_ himself
saith, 1 _Cor._ ix. 27. _But I keep under my Body, and bring it into
Subjection, lest that by any Means, when I have preached to others, I
myself should be a Cast-away._ Here the Apostle supposes it possible
for him to be a _Cast-away_; and yet it may be judged he was far more
advanced in the inward Work of _Regeneration_, when he wrote that
_Epistle_, than many who now-a-days too presumptuously suppose they
cannot _fall away_, because they feel themselves to have attained
some small Degree of true _Grace_. But the Apostle makes Use of this
Supposition or Possibility of his being a _Cast-away_, as I before
observed, as an Inducement to them to be watchful; _I keep under my
Body, lest_, &c. Nevertheless the same Apostle, at another Time, in the
Sense and Feeling of _God’s holy Power_, and in the _Dominion_ thereof,
finding himself a Conqueror therethrough over Sin and his Soul’s
Enemies, maketh no Difficulty to affirm, _Rom._ viii. 38. _For I am
persuaded that neither Death nor Life_, &c. which clearly sheweth that
he had attained a Condition from which he knew he could not _fall away_.

[Sidenote: II.] [Sidenote: _A Condition attainable in this Life, from
which there is no _Falling away.] But _Secondly_, It appears such
a Condition is attainable, because we are exhorted to it; and, as
hath been proved before, the Scripture never proposeth to us Things
impossible. Such an Exhortation we have from the Apostle, 2 _Pet._
i. 10. _Wherefore the rather, Brethren, give Diligence to make your
Calling and Election sure._ And though there be a Condition here
proposed, yet since we have already proved that it is possible to
fulfil this Condition, then also the Promise annexed thereunto may
be attained. And since, where Assurance is wanting, there is still a
Place left for Doubtings and Despairs, if we should affirm it never
attainable, then should there never be a Place known by the Saints in
this World, wherein they might be free of Doubting and Despair; which
as it is most absurd in itself, so it is contrary to the manifest
Experience of Thousands.

[Sidenote: III. _A certain Assurance and Establishment given of God to
many of his Saints and Children._] _Thirdly_, God hath given to many
of his Saints and Children, and is ready to give unto _all_, a _full_
and _certain Assurance_ that they are his, and that no Power shall be
able to pluck them out of his Hand. But this Assurance would be no
Assurance, if those who are so _assured_ were not _established_ and
_confirmed_ beyond all Doubt and Hesitation: If so, then surely there
is no Possibility for such to miss of that which God hath assured them
of. And that there is such _Assurance_ attainable in this Life, the
Scripture abundantly declareth, both in general and as to particular
Persons. As _first_, _Rev._ iii. 12. _Him that overcometh will I make a
Pillar in the Temple of my God, and he shall go no more out_, &c. which
containeth a general Promise unto all. Hence the Apostle speaks of some
that are _sealed_, 2 Cor. i. 22. _Who hath also sealed us, and given
the Earnest of the Spirit in our Hearts_: Wherefore the _Spirit _so_
sealing _is called the_ Earnest _or_ Pledge of our Inheritance_, Ephes.
i. 13. _In whom ye were sealed by the Holy Spirit of Promise_. And
therefore the Apostle _Paul_, not only in that of the _Romans_ above
noted, declareth himself to have attained that Condition, but 2 _Tim._
iv. 7. he affirmeth in these Words, _I have fought a good Fight_, &c.
which also many good Men have and do witness. And therefore as there
can be nothing more evident than that which the _manifest Experience_
of this Time sheweth, and therein is found agreeable to the Experience
of former Times, so we see there have been both of _old_ and of _late_
that have _turned the Grace of God into Wantonness_, and have _fallen
from their Faith and Integrity_; thence we may safely conclude such a
_Falling away possible_. We also see that some of _old_ and of _late_
have attained a certain Assurance, some Time before they departed, that
they should _inherit eternal Life_, and have accordingly died in that
_good Hope_, of and concerning whom the Spirit of God testified _that
they are saved_. Wherefore we all see such a State is attainable in
this Life, from which there is not a _Falling away_: For seeing the
Spirit of God did so testify, it was not possible that they should
perish, concerning whom _he who cannot lie_ thus bare Witness.


Concerning the MINISTRY.

_As by the _Light_ or _Gift_ of God all true Knowledge in Things
    spiritual is received and revealed, so by the same, as it is
    manifested and received in the Heart, by the Strength and Power
    thereof, every true _Minister_ of the _Gospel_ is ordained,
    prepared, and supplied in the Work of the _Ministry_; and by the
    Leading, Moving, and Drawing hereof ought every _Evangelist_ and
    _Christian Pastor_ to be led and ordered in his Labour and Work of
    the Gospel, both as to the Place _where_, as to the Persons _to
    whom_, and as to the Time _wherein_ he is to _minister_. Moreover
    they who have this Authority may and ought to preach the _Gospel_,
    though without _human Commission_ or _Literature_; as on the other
    Hand, they who want the Authority of this _divine Gift_, however
    learned, or authorized by the _Commission_ of _Men_ and _Churches_,
    are to be esteemed but as _Deceivers_, and not _true Ministers_ of
    the _Gospel. [Sidenote: The Gospel to be preached freely. Mat.
    10. 8.] _Also they who have received this holy and unspotted Gift,
    _as they have freely received it, so are they freely to give it,_
    without Hire or Bargaining, far less to use it as a _Trade_ to get
    Money by: Yet God hath called any one from their Employment or
    Trades, by which they acquire their Livelihood, it may be lawful
    for such, according to the Liberty which they feel given them in
    the Lord, to receive such Temporals (to wit, what may be needful
    for them for Meat and Clothing) as are given them freely and
    cordially by those to whom they have communicated Spirituals._

§. I. Hitherto I have treated of those Things which relate to the
_Christian Faith_ and _Christians_, as they stand each in his private
and particular Condition, and how and by what Means every Man may be
a _Christian_ indeed, and so abide. Now I come in order to speak
of those Things that relate to _Christians_, as they are stated in
a _joint Fellowship_ and _Communion_, and come under a visible and
outward _Society_, which _Society_ is called the _Church of God_,
and in Scripture compared to a _Body_, and therefore named the _Body
of Christ_. [Sidenote: _The Church of God is the spiritual Body of
Christ._] As then in the natural Body there be divers Members, all
concurring to the common End of preserving and confirming the whole
Body, so in this _spiritual_ and _mystical Body_ there are also
divers Members, according to the different Measures of _Grace_ and
of the _Spirit_ diversly administered unto _each Member_; and from
this _Diversity_ ariseth that Distinction of Persons in the _visible
Society_ of _Christians_, as of _Apostles_, _Pastors_, _Evangelists_,
_Ministers_, &c. That which in this Proposition is proposed, is,
_What makes or constitutes any a Minister of the Church, what his
Qualifications ought to be, and how he ought to behave himself?_ But
because it may seem somewhat preposterous to speak of the _distinct
Offices_ of the _Church_ until something be said of the _Church_ in
general, though nothing positively be said of it in the Proposition;
yet, as here implied, I shall briefly premise something thereof, and
then proceed to the particular Members of it.

§. II. It is not in the least my Design to meddle with those tedious
and many Controversies wherewith the _Papists_ and _Protestants_ do
tear one another concerning this Thing; but only according to the Truth
manifested to me, and revealed in me by the Testimony of the Spirit,
according to that Proportion of Wisdom given me, briefly to hold forth
as a necessary Introduction both to this Matter of the _Ministry_ and
of _Worship_, which followeth those Things which I, together with my
_Brethren_, do believe concerning the _Church_.

[Sidenote: I.] [Sidenote: _The _Etymology_ of the Word _[Greek:
ekklêsia: εκκλησια]_ (the Church) and Signification of it._] The
_Church_ then, according to the grammatical Signification of the
Word, as it is used in the holy Scripture, signifies an _Assembly_
or _Gathering of many into one Place_; for the Substantive [Greek:
ekklêsia: εκκλησια] comes from the Word [Greek: ekkaleô: εκκαλεω] _I
call out of_, and originally from [Greek: kaleô: καλεω] _I call_; and
indeed, as this is the grammatical Sense of the Word, so also it is
the real and proper Signification of the Thing, the _Church_ being no
other Thing but the _Society_, _Gathering_, or _Company of such as
God hath called out of the World, and worldly Spirit, to walk in his
LIGHT and LIFE._ The _Church_ then so defined is to be considered as
it comprehends all that are thus _called_ and _gathered_ truly by God,
both such as are yet in this inferior World, and such as having already
laid down the earthly Tabernacle, are passed into their heavenly
Mansions, which together do make up the one _Catholick Church_,
concerning which there is so much Controversy. [Sidenote: _No Salvation
without the_ Church.] Out of which _Church_ we freely acknowledge there
can be no Salvation; because under this _Church_ and its Denomination
are comprehended all, and as many, of whatsoever _Nation_, _Kindred_,
_Tongue_, or _People_ they be, though outwardly Strangers, and remote
from those who profess _Christ_ and _Christianity_ in Words, and have
the Benefit of the Scriptures, as become obedient to the _holy Light_
and _Testimony of God_ in their Hearts, so as to become sanctified
by it, and cleansed from the Evils of their Ways. [Sidenote: _What
the_ Church _is_.] For this is the _Universal_ or _Catholick Spirit_,
by which many are called from all the _four Corners of the Earth,
and shall sit down with_ Abraham, Isaac, _and_ Jacob: By this the
_secret Life and Virtue_ of Jesus is conveyed into many that are afar
off, even as by the Blood that runs into the Veins and Arteries of
the natural Body the Life is conveyed from the Head and Heart unto
the extreme Parts. [Sidenote: Turks _and_ Jews _may become Members
of this_ Church.] There may be Members therefore of this _Catholick
Church_ both among _Heathens_, _Turks_, _Jews_, and all the several
Sorts of _Christians_, Men and Women of Integrity and Simplicity of
Heart, who though blinded in some Things in their Understanding, and
perhaps burdened with the Superstitions and Formality of the several
Sects in which they are ingrossed, yet being upright in their Hearts
before the Lord, chiefly aiming and labouring to be delivered from
Iniquity, and loving to follow Righteousness, are by the secret Touches
of this _holy Light_ in their Souls enlivened and quickened, thereby
secretly united to God, and therethrough become true Members of this
_Catholick Church_. Now the _Church_ in this Respect hath been in Being
in all Generations; for God never wanted some such Witnesses for him,
though many Times slighted, and not much observed by this World; and
therefore this _Church_, though still in Being, hath been oftentimes as
it were invisible, in that it hath not come under the Observations of
the Men of this World, being, as saith the Scripture, _Jer._ iii. 14.
_One of a City, and two of a Family._ And yet though the _Church_ thus
considered may be as it were hid from wicked Men, as not then gathered
into a _visible Fellowship_, yea, and not observed even by some that
are Members of it, yet may there notwithstanding many belong to it;
as when _Elias_ complained he was _left alone_, 1 Kings xix. 18. God
answered unto him, _I have reserved to myself seven thousand Men, who
have not bowed their Knees to the Image of_ Baal; whence the Apostle
argues, _Rom._ xi. the Being of a _Remnant_ in his Day.

§. III. [Sidenote: II.] [Sidenote: _The Definition of the _Church_
of _God_, as gathered into a _visible Fellowship.] _Secondly_,
The _Church_ is to be considered as it signifies a certain Number
of Persons gathered by God’s Spirit, and by the Testimony of some
of his Servants raised up for that End, unto the Belief of the true
Principles and Doctrines of the Christian Faith, who through their
Hearts being united by the same Love, and their Understandings informed
in the same Truths, gather, meet, and assemble together to wait upon
God, to worship him, and to bear a joint Testimony for the _Truth_
against _Error_, suffering for the same, and so becoming through this
Fellowship as one Family and Houshold in certain Respects, do each of
them watch over, teach, instruct, and care for one another, according
to their several Measures and Attainments: Such were the _Churches_ of
the primitive Times gathered by the Apostles; whereof we have divers
mentioned in the holy Scriptures. And as to the _Visibility_ of the
_Church_ in this Respect, there hath been a great Interruption since
the Apostles Days, by Reason of the _Apostasy_, as will hereafter

§. IV. [Sidenote: _How to become a Member of that_ Church.] To be a
_Member_ then of the _Catholick Church_, there is Need of the _Inward
Calling of God_ by his _Light in the Heart_, and a being leavened into
the Nature and Spirit of it, so as to forsake Unrighteousness, and
be turned to Righteousness, and in the Inwardness of the Mind to be
cut out of the _wild Olive Tree_ of our own first fallen Nature, and
ingrafted into _Christ_ by his _Word_ and _Spirit in the Heart_. And
this may be done in those who are Strangers to the History, (God not
having pleased to make them Partakers thereof) as in the _fifth_ and
_sixth Propositions_ hath already been proved.

[Sidenote: _The _outward Profession_ of the Members of the _true
Church.] To be a _Member_ of a particular _Church of Christ_, as
this inward Work is indispensibly necessary, so is also the outward
Profession of, and Belief in, Jesus Christ, and those holy Truths
delivered by his Spirit in the Scriptures; seeing the Testimony of the
Spirit recorded in the Scriptures, doth answer the Testimony of the
same Spirit in the Heart, even as _Face answereth Face in a Glass_.
Hence it follows, that the inward Work of Holiness, and forsaking
Iniquity, is necessary in every Respect to the being a Member in the
_Church of Christ_; and that the outward Profession is necessary to
be a Member of a particular gathered _Church_, but not to the being a
Member of the _Catholick Church_; yet it is absolutely necessary, where
God affords the Opportunity of knowing it: And the outward Testimony
is to be believed, where it is presented and revealed; the Sum whereof
hath upon other Occasions been already proved.

§. V. [Sidenote: _The Members of the Antichristian Church in the
Apostasy, their empty Profession._] But contrary hereunto, the Devil,
that worketh and hath wrought in the _Mystery of Iniquity_, hath
taught his Followers to affirm, _That no Man, however holy, is a
Member of the Church of Christ without the outward Profession; and
unless he be initiated thereinto by some outward Ceremonies_. And
again, _That Men who have this outward Profession, though inwardly
unholy, may be Members of the true Church of Christ, yea, and ought to
be so esteemed_. This is plainly to put _Light_ for _Darkness_, and
_Darkness_ for _Light_; as if God had a greater Regard to Words than
Actions, and were more pleased with vain Professions than with real
Holiness: But these Things I have sufficiently refuted heretofore.
Only from hence let it be observed, that upon this false and rotten
Foundation _Antichrist_ hath built his _Babylonish Structure_, and the
_Antichristian Church_ in the _Apostasy_ hath hereby reared herself up
to that Height and Grandeur she hath attained; so as to exalt herself
above _all that is called God, and sit in the Temple of God as God_.

[Sidenote: _The Decay of the _Church.] For the particular _Churches_
of _Christ_, gathered in the Apostles Days, soon after beginning to
decay as to the _inward Life_, came to be overgrown with several
Errors, and the Hearts of the Professors of _Christianity_ to be
leavened with the old Spirit and Conversation of the World. Yet it
pleased God for some _Centuries_ to preserve that _Life_ in many, whom
he emboldened with Zeal to stand and suffer for his Name through the
_ten Persecutions_: But these being over, the Meekness, Gentleness,
Love, Long-suffering, Goodness, and Temperance of _Christianity_
began to be lost. [Sidenote: _When Men became Christians by _Birth_,
and not by _Conversion_, Christianity came to be lost._] For after
that the Princes of the Earth came to take upon them that Profession,
and that it ceased to be a Reproach to be a _Christian_, but rather
became a Means to Preferment; Men became such by Birth and Education,
and not by Conversion and Renovation of Spirit: Then there was none
so vile, none so wicked, none so profane, who became not a Member of
the _Church_. And the _Teachers_ and _Pastors_ thereof becoming the
Companions of Princes, and so being enriched by their Benevolence, and
getting vast Treasures and Estates, became puffed up, and as it were
drunken with the vain Pomp and Glory of this World: And so marshalled
themselves in manifold Orders and Degrees; not without innumerable
Contests and Altercations who should have the [79]Precedency. So the
Virtue, Life, Substance, and Kernel of _Christian Religion_ came to
be lost, and nothing remained but a Shadow and Image; which dead
Image, or Carcase of _Christianity_ (to make it take the better with
the superstitious Multitude of _Heathens_ that were engrossed in it,
not by any inward Conversion of their Hearts, or by becoming less
wicked or superstitious, but by a little Change in the Object of their
Superstition) not having the inward Ornament and Life of the Spirit,
became decked with many outward and visible Orders, and beautified with
the Gold, Silver, precious Stones, and the other splendid Ornaments
of this perishing World: So that this was no more to be accounted the
_Christian Religion_, and _Christian Church_, notwithstanding the
outward Profession, than the _dead Body_ of a Man is to be accounted a
_living Man_; which, however cunningly embalmed, and adorned with ever
so much Gold or Silver, or most precious Stones, or sweet Ointments,
is but a dead Body still, without Sense, Life, or Motion. [Sidenote:
_In the Church of _Rome_ are no less Superstitions and Ceremonies
introduced, than were either among _Jews_ or _Heathens.] For that
_Apostate Church_ of _Rome_ has introduced no fewer Ceremonies and
Superstitions into the _Christian Profession_, than were either among
_Jews_ or _Heathens_; and that there is and hath been as much, yea, and
more Pride, Covetousness, Uncleanness, Luxury, Fornication, Profaneness
and Atheism among her Teachers and chief Bishops, than ever was among
any Sort of People, none need doubt, that have read their own Authors,
to wit, _Platina_ and others.

[79] As was between the Bishop of _Rome_ and the Bishop of

[Sidenote: _Whether, and what Difference there is betwixt the
_Protestants_ and _Papists_ in Superstitions._] Now, though
_Protestants_ have reformed from her in some of the most gross Points
and absurd Doctrines relating to the _Church_ and _Ministry_, yet
(which is to be regretted) they have only lopt off the Branches,
but retain and plead earnestly for the same Root, from which these
Abuses have sprung. So that even among them, though all that Mass of
Superstition, Ceremonies, and Orders be not again established, yet the
same Pride, Covetousness and Sensuality is found to have overspread
and leavened their _Churches_ and _Ministry_, and the Life, Power
and Virtue of _true Religion_ is lost among them; and the very same
Death, Barrenness, Dryness and Emptiness, is found in their _Ministry_.
So that in Effect they differ from _Papists_ but in Form and some
Ceremonies; being with them apostatised from the Life and Power the
true _Primitive Church_ and her _Pastors_ were in: So that of both it
may be said truly (without Breach of Charity) that having only a _Form
of Godliness_ (and many of them not so much as that) they are _Deniers_
of, yea, _Enemies_ to, the Power of it. And this proceeds not simply
from their not walking answerably to their own Principles, and so
degenerating that Way, which also is true; but, which is worse, their
laying down to themselves, and adhering to certain Principles, which
naturally, as a cursed Root, bring forth these bitter Fruits: These
therefore shall afterwards be examined and refuted, as the contrary
Positions of Truth in the Proposition are explained and proved.

For as to the Nature and Constitution of a Church[80] (abstract from
their Disputes concerning its constant Visibility, Infallibility, and
the Primacy of the Church of Rome) the Protestants, as in Practice, so
in Principles, differ not from _Papists_; [Sidenote: _The _Protestant_
Church how they become Members thereof._] for they engross within the
Compass of their _Church_ whole Nations, making their Infants Members
of it, by sprinkling a little Water upon them; so that there is none
so wicked or profane who is not a Fellow-member; no Evidence of
Holiness being required to constitute a Member of the _Church_. Nay,
look through the _Protestant Nations_, and there will no Difference
appear in the Lives of the Generality of the One, more than of the
Other; he, who _ruleth in the Children of Disobedience_, reigning
in both: [Sidenote: Christianity _chiefly consists in the Renewing
of the_ Heart.] So that the _Reformation_, through this Defect, is
only in holding some less gross Errors in the Notion, but not in
having the Heart reformed and renewed, in which mainly the _Life_ of
_Christianity_ consisteth.

[80] i. e. _National._

§. VI. [Sidenote: _A _Popish, corrupt Ministry_ all Evils follow._]
But the _Popish Errors_ concerning the _Ministry_, which they have
retained, are most of all to be regretted, by which chiefly the Life
and Power of _Christianity_ is barred out among them, and they kept in
Death, Barrenness and Dryness: There being nothing more hurtful than an
Error in this Respect. [Sidenote: _Like People, like Priest._ Hosea 4.
9.] For where a false and corrupt _Ministry_ entereth, all Manner of
other Evils follow upon it, according to that Scripture Adage, _Like
People, like Priest_: For by their Influence, instead of ministering
Life and Righteousness, they minister Death and Iniquity. The whole
_Backslidings_ of the _Jewish Congregation_ of old are hereto ascribed:
_The Leaders of my People have caused them to err_. The whole Writings
of the Prophets are full of such Complaints; and for this Cause, under
the _New Testament_, we are so often warned and guarded to _beware of
false Prophets, and false Teachers_, &c. What may be thought then,
where all, as to this, is out of Order; where both the Foundation,
Call, Qualifications, Maintenance, and whole Discipline are different
from and opposite to the _Ministry_ of the _Primitive Church_; yea, and
necessarily tend to the Shutting out of a _Spiritual Ministry_, and the
bringing in and establishing of a _Carnal_? This shall appear by Parts.

§. VII. [Sidenote: Quest. 1.] That then which comes first to be
questioned in this Matter, is concerning the _Call of a Minister_; to
wit, _What maketh, or how cometh a Man to be, a Minister, Pastor, or
Teacher in the Church of Christ?_

[Sidenote: _Answ._] [Sidenote: _The Call of a _Minister_ and wherein
it consisteth._] We _answer_; By the _inward Power and Virtue of the
Spirit of God_. For, as saith our Proposition, _Having received the
true Knowledge of Things spiritual by the Spirit of God, without which
they cannot be known, and being by the same in Measure purified and
sanctified, he comes thereby to be called and moved to minister to
others_; being able to speak, from a living Experience, of what he
himself is a Witness; and therefore _knowing the Terror of the Lord, he
is fit to persuade Men_, &c. 2 Cor. v. 11. and his Words and Ministry,
proceeding from the inward Power and Virtue, reach to the Heart of
his Hearers, and make them approve of him, and be subject unto him.
[Sidenote: Object.] Our Adversaries are forced to confess, that this
were indeed desirable and best; but this they will not have to be
absolutely necessary. I shall first prove the Necessity of it, and then
shew how much they err in that which they make more necessary than this
divine and heavenly Call.

[Sidenote: Arg.] [Sidenote: 1. _The Necessity of an _inward Call_ to
make a Man a _Christian.] _First_, That which is necessary to make
a Man a _Christian_, so as without it he cannot be truly one, must be
much more necessary to make a Man a _Minister of Christianity_; seeing
the one is a Degree above the other, and has it included in it: Nothing
less than he that supposeth a _Master_, supposeth him first to have
attained the Knowledge and Capacity of a _Scholar_. They that are not
_Christians_, cannot be Teachers and Ministers among _Christians_.

But this inward Call, Power and Virtue of the Spirit of God, is
necessary to make a Man a _Christian_; as we have abundantly proved
before in the second Proposition, according to these Scriptures, _He
that hath not the Spirit of Christ, is none of his. As many as are led
by the Spirit of God, are the Sons of God_:

Therefore this Call, Moving and Drawing of the Spirit, must be much
more necessary to make a Man a _Minister_.

[Sidenote: 2. _The Ministry of the Spirit requires the Operation and
Testimony of the Spirit._] _Secondly_, All _Ministers_ of the _New
Testament_ ought to be _Ministers_ of the _Spirit_, and not of the
_Letter_, according to that of 2 _Cor._ iii. 6. and as the old Latin
hath it, _Not by the Letter, but by the Spirit_: But how can a Man be
a Minister of the Spirit, who is not inwardly called by it, and who
looks not upon the Operation and Testimony of the Spirit as essential
to his Call? As he could not be a Minister of the Letter who had thence
no Ground for his Call, yea, who was altogether a Stranger to and
unacquainted with it, so neither can he be a Minister of the Spirit
who is a Stranger to it, and unacquainted with the Motions thereof,
and knows it not to draw, act, and move him, and go before him in the
Work of the _Ministry_. I would willingly know, how those that take
upon them to be Ministers (as they suppose) of the Gospel, merely from
an outward Vocation, without so much as being any ways sensible of the
Work of the Spirit, or any inward Call therefrom, can either satisfy
themselves or others that they are _Ministers of the Spirit_, or
wherein they differ from the _Ministers of the Letter_? For,

[Sidenote: 3. _Under the Law the People needed not to doubt, who
should be Priests and Ministers._] _Thirdly_, If this inward Call,
or Testimony of the Spirit, were not essential and necessary to a
_Minister_, then the _Ministry_ of the _New Testament_ would not only
be no ways preferable to, but in divers Respects far worse than that
of the _Law_. For under the _Law_ there was a certain Tribe allotted
for the _Ministry_, and of that Tribe certain Families set apart for
the _Priesthood_ and other Offices, by the immediate Command of God
to _Moses_; so that the People needed not be in any Doubt who should
be Priests and Ministers of the holy Things: Yea, and besides this,
God called forth, by the immediate Testimony of his Spirit, several at
divers Times to teach, instruct, and reprove his People, as _Samuel_,
_Nathan_, _Elias_, _Elisha_, _Jeremiah_, _Amos_, and many more of the
Prophets: But now under the _New Covenant_, where the _Ministry_ ought
to be more _spiritual_, the _Way_ more _certain_, and the _Access_
more _easy_ unto the Lord, our Adversaries, by denying the Necessity
of this inward and spiritual Vocation, make it quite otherways. For
there being now no certain Family or Tribe to which the _Ministry_ is
limited, we are left in Uncertainty, to choose and have _Pastors_ at a
Venture, without any certain Assent of the Will of God; having neither
an outward Rule nor Certainty in this Affair to walk by: For that the
Scripture cannot give any certain Rule in this Matter, hath in the
_third Proposition_ concerning it been already shewn.

[Sidenote: 4. _Christ the Door._] _Fourthly_, Christ proclaims them
all [81]_Thieves and Robbers, that enter not by him the Door into the
Sheepfold, but climb up some other Way; whom the Sheep ought not to
hear_: But such as come in without the Call, Movings, and Leadings of
the Spirit of Christ, wherewith he leads his Children into _all Truth_,
come in certainly not by Christ, who is the _Door_, but some other Way,
and therefore are not true Shepherds.

[81] John 10. 1.

§. VIII. [Sidenote: Succession _pleaded by the false Church from Christ
and his Apostles._] To all this they object the _Succession of the
Church_; alleging, _That since Christ gave a Call to his Apostles and
Disciples, they have conveyed that Call to their Successors, having
Power to ordain _Pastors_ and _Teachers_; by which Power the Authority
of ordaining and making _Ministers_ and _Pastors_ is successively
conveyed to us; so that such, who are ordained and called by the
_Pastors_ of the _Church_, are therefore true and lawful Ministers;
and others, who are not so called, are to be accounted but Intruders._
Hereunto also some _Protestants_ add a _Necessity_, though they make it
not a Thing _essential_; _That besides this Calling of the _Church_,
every one, being called, ought to have the inward Call of the Spirit,
inclining him so chosen to his Work_: But this they say is _subjective_
and not _objective_; of which before.

[Sidenote: _Answ._] As to what is subjoined of the inward Call of
the Spirit, in that they make it not essential to a true Call, but
a Supererogation as it were, it sheweth how little they set by it:
Since those they admit to the Ministry are not so much as questioned
in their Trials, whether they have this or not. Yet, in that it hath
been often mentioned, especially by the _Primitive Protestants_ in
their Treatises on this Subject, it sheweth how much they were secretly
convinced in their Minds, that this inward Call of the Spirit was most
excellent, and preferable to any other; [Sidenote: _The _Call_ of the
_Spirit_ preferred to any other by _Primitive Protestants.] and
therefore in the most noble and heroic _Acts_ of the _Reformation_,
they laid Claim unto it; so that many of the _Primitive Protestants_
did not scruple both to despise and disown this _outward[82] Call_,
when urged by the _Papists_ against them. [Sidenote: _Modern
_Protestants_ denying the _Call_ of the _Spirit.] But now
_Protestants_, having gone from the Testimony of the Spirit, plead
for the same _Succession_; and being pressed (by those whom God now
raiseth up by his Spirit to reform those Abuses that are among them)
with the Example of their Forefathers Practice against _Rome_, they are
not at all ashamed utterly to deny that their Fathers were called to
their Work by the inward and immediate Vocation of the Spirit; clothing
themselves with that Call, which they say their Forefathers had, as
Pastors of the _Roman Church_. For thus (not to go further) affirmeth
_Nicolaus Arnoldus_,[83] in a Pamphlet written against the same
Propositions, called, _A Theologick Exercitation_, Sect. 40. averring,
_That they pretended not to an immediate Act of the Holy Spirit; but
reformed by the Virtue of the ordinary Vocation which they had in the
Church, as it then was, _to wit,_ that of _Rome_, &c._

[82] _Succession._

[83] Who gives himself out _Doctor_ and _Professor_ of _Sacred
Theology_ at _Franequer_.

§. IX. [Sidenote: _Absurdities _Protestants_ fall into, by deriving
their Ministry through the _Church_ of _Rome.] Many Absurdities do
_Protestants_ fall into, by deriving their Ministry thus through the
_Church_ of _Rome_. As, _First_, They must acknowledge her to be a
true _Church_ of _Christ_, though only erroneous in some Things; which
contradicts their _Forefathers_ so frequently, and yet truly, calling
her _Antichrist_. _Secondly_, They must needs acknowledge, that the
_Priests_ and _Bishops_ of the _Romish Church_ are true _Ministers_ and
_Pastors_ of the _Church_ of _Christ_, as to the essential Part; else
they could not be fit Subjects for that Power and Authority to have
resided in; neither could they have been Vessels capable to receive
that Power, and again transmit it to their Successors. _Thirdly_,
It would follow from this, that the _Priests_ and _Bishops_ of the
_Romish Church_ are yet really true _Pastors_ and _Teachers_: For if
_Protestant Ministers_ have no Authority but what they received from
them, and since the _Church_ of _Rome_ is the same she was at that
Time of the Reformation in Doctrine and Manners, and she has the same
Power now she had then, and if the Power lie in the _Succession_,
then these _Priests_ of the _Romish Church_ now, which derive their
Ordination from those _Bishops_ that ordained the first _Reformers_,
have the same Authority which the Successors of the Reformed have,
and consequently are no less _Ministers_ of the _Church_ than they
are. But how will this agree with that Opinion which the _Primitive
Protestants_ had of the _Romish Priests_ and _Clergy_, to whom _Luther_
did not only deny any Power or Authority, but contrary-wise affirmed,
_That it was wickedly done of them, to assume to themselves only this
Authority to teach, and be _Priests_ and _Ministers_, &c._ [Sidenote:
Luther _affirmed, that a _Woman_ might be a Preacher._] For he himself
affirmed, _That every good Christian (not only Men, but even Women
also) is a Preacher_.

§. X. [Sidenote: _The pretended Succession of _Papists_ and
_Protestants_ explained._] But against this vain Succession, as
asserted either by the _Papists_ or _Protestants_ as a necessary
Thing to the Call of a Minister, I _answer_; That such as plead for
it, as a sufficient or necessary Thing to the Call of a Minister,
do thereby sufficiently declare their Ignorance of the Nature of
_Christianity_, and how much they are Strangers to the Life and Power
of a _Christian Ministry_, which is not entailed to Succession, as an
outward Inheritance; and herein, as hath been often before observed,
they not only make the _Gospel_ not better than the _Law_, but even
far short of it. For _Jesus Christ_, as he regardeth not any distinct
particular Family or Nation in the gathering of his Children; but only
such as are joined to and leavened with his own _pure_ and _righteous
Seed_, so neither regards he a bare outward Succession, where his pure,
immaculate, and righteous Life is wanting; for that were all one. He
took not the Nations into the _New Covenant_, that he might suffer them
to fall into the old Errors of the _Jews_, or to approve them in their
Errors, but that he might gather unto himself a pure People out of the
Earth. Now this was the great Error of the _Jews_, to think they were
the Church and People of God, because they could derive their outward
Succession from _Abraham_; [Sidenote: _The _Jews_ Error of _Abraham_’s
outward Succession._] whereby they reckoned themselves the _Children
of God_, as being the Offspring of _Abraham_, who was the _Father of
the Faithful_. But how severely doth the Scripture rebuke this vain
and frivolous Pretence? Telling them, _That God is able of the Stones
to raise Children unto Abraham_; and that not the outward _Seed_,
but those that were found in the _Faith_ of _Abraham_, are the true
_Children_ of faithful _Abraham_. Far less then can this Pretence hold
among _Christians_, seeing Christ rejects all outward Affinity of that
Kind: [84]_These_, saith he, _are my Mother, Brethren and Sisters, who
do the Will of my Father which is in Heaven_: And again; _He looked
round about him, and said, Who shall do the Will of God, these_, saith
he, _are my Brethren_. So then, such as do not the Commands of Christ,
are not found clothed with his Righteousness, are not his Disciples;
and that which a Man hath not, he cannot give to another: And it is
clear, that no Man nor Church, though truly called of God, and as such
having the Authority of a Church and Minister, can any longer retain
that Authority, than they retain the Power, Life, and Righteousness of
_Christianity_; for the Form is entailed to the Power and Substance,
and not the Substance to the Form. [Sidenote: _The Form of Godliness
is entailed to the Power and Substance, and not the Substance to the
Form._] So that when a Man ceaseth inwardly in his Heart to be a
_Christian_ (where his Christianity must lie) by turning to Satan, and
becoming a Reprobate, he is no more a _Christian_, though he retain the
Name and Form, than a dead Man is a Man, though he hath the Image and
Representation of one, or than the Picture or Statue of a Man is a Man:
And though a dead Man may serve to a Painter to retain some imperfect
Representation of the Man, that once was alive, and so one Picture may
serve to make another by, yet none of those can serve to make a true
living Man again, neither can they convey the Life and Spirit of the
Man; it must be God, that made the Man at first, that alone can revive
him. [Sidenote: _Succession interrupted._] As Death then makes such
Interruption of an outward natural Succession, that no Art nor outward
Form can uphold, and as a dead Man, after he is dead, can have no
Issue, neither can dead Images of Men make living Men: So that it is
the Living that are only capable to succeed one another; and such as
die, so soon as they die cease to succeed, or to transmit Succession.
So it is in spiritual Things; it is the Life of Christianity, taking
Place in the Heart, that makes a Christian; [Sidenote: _The Living
Members make the Church: Life lost, the Church is ceased._] and so
it is a Number of such, being alive, joined together in the Life of
Christianity, that make a Church of Christ; and it is all those that
are thus alive and quickened, considered together, that make the
Catholick Church of Christ: Therefore when this Life ceaseth in one,
then that one ceaseth to be a Christian; and all Power, Virtue, and
Authority, which he had as a Christian, ceaseth with it; so that if
he hath been a Minister or Teacher, he ceaseth to be so any more:
And though he retain the Form, and hold to the Authority in Words,
yet that signifies no more, nor is it of any more real Virtue and
Authority, than the mere Image of a dead Man. [Sidenote: Judas _fell
from his Ministry by Transgression_.] And as this is most agreeable
to Reason, so it is to the Scripture’s Testimony; for it is said of
_Judas_, Acts i. 25. _That Judas fell from his Ministry and Apostleship
by Transgression_; so his Transgression caused him to cease to be an
Apostle any more: Whereas, had the Apostleship been entailed to his
Person, so that Transgression could not cause him to lose it, until he
had been formally degraded by the _Church_ (which _Judas_ never was
so long as he lived) _Judas_ had been as really an Apostle, after he
betrayed Christ, as before. And as it is of one, so of many, yea, of
a whole Church: For seeing nothing makes a Man truly a Christian, but
the Life of Christianity inwardly ruling in his Heart; so nothing makes
a Church, but the gathering of several true Christians into one Body.
Now where all these Members lose this Life, there the Church ceaseth
to be, though they still uphold the Form, and retain the Name: For
when that which made them a Church, and for which they were a Church,
ceaseth, then they cease also to be a Church: And therefore the Spirit,
speaking to the Church of _Laodicea_, because of her _Lukewarmness_,
Rev. iii. 16. threateneth to _spue her out of his Mouth_. [Sidenote:
_The Lukewarmness of the Church of _Laodicea.] Now, suppose the
Church of _Laodicea_ had continued in that _Lukewarmness_, and had
come under that Condemnation and Judgment, though she had retained the
Name and Form of a Church, and had had her Pastors and Ministers, as
no Doubt she had at that Time, yet surely she had been no true Church
of Christ, nor had the Authority of her Pastors and Teachers been to
be regarded, because of an outward Succession, though perhaps some of
them had it immediately from the Apostles. From all which I infer,
That since the Authority of the Christian Church and her Pastors is
always united, and never separated from the inward Power, Virtue, and
righteous Life of Christianity; where this ceaseth, that ceaseth also.
But our Adversaries acknowledge, _That many, if not most of those, by
and through whom they derive this Authority, were altogether destitute
of this Life and Virtue of Christianity: Therefore they could neither
receive, have, nor transmit any Christian Authority_.

[84] Mat. 12. 48. &c. Mark 3. 33. &c.

[Sidenote: Object.] But if it be objected, _That though the Generality
of the Bishops and Priests of the Church of _Rome_, during the
Apostasy, were such wicked Men; yet _Protestants_ affirm, and thou
thyself seemest to acknowledge, that there were some good Men among
them, whom the Lord regarded, and who were true Members of the
_Catholick Church_ of _Christ_; might not they then have transmitted
this Authority?_

[Sidenote: _Answ._] [Sidenote: _The _Protestants_ plead for a
Succession inherent._] I answer, This saith nothing; in respect
_Protestants_ do not at all lay Claim to their Ministry, as transmitted
to them by a direct Line of good Men; which they can never shew, nor
yet pretend to: But generally place this Succession as inherent in
the whole Pastors of the Apostate Church. Neither do they plead their
Call to be good and valid, because they can derive it through a Line
of good Men, separate and observably distinguishable from the rest of
the Bishops and Clergy of the _Romish Church_; but they derive it as an
Authority residing in the Whole: For they think it _Heresy_, to judge
that the Quality or Condition of the _Administrator_ doth any Ways
invalidate or prejudice his Work.

This vain and pretended Succession not only militates against, and
fights with the very manifest Purpose and Intent of Christ in the
gathering and calling of his Church, but makes him (so to speak)
more blind and less prudent than natural Men are in conveying and
establishing their outward Inheritances. [Sidenote: _An Estate void of
Heirship devolves to the Prince, none claims it, but whom he sees meet
to give it: So the Heirship of Life is enjoyed from Christ, the true
Heir._] For where an Estate is entailed to a certain Name and Family,
when that Family weareth out, and there is no lawful Successor found
of it, that can make a just Title appear, as being really of Blood and
Affinity to the Family; it is not lawful for any one of another Race or
Blood, because he assumes the Name or Arms of that Family, to possess
the Estate, and claim the Superiorities and Privileges of the Family:
But by the Law of Nations the Inheritance devolves into the Prince, as
being _Ultimus Hæres_; and so he giveth it again immediately to whom
he sees meet, and makes them bear the Name and Arms of the Family, who
then are entitled to the Privileges and Revenues thereof. So in like
Manner, the true Name and Title of a _Christian_, by which he hath
Right to the _heavenly Inheritance_, and is a Member of _Jesus Christ_,
is inward _Righteousness_ and _Holiness_, and the Mind redeemed
from the _Vanities_, _Lusts_, and _Iniquities_ of this World; and a
Gathering or Company, made up of such Members, makes a Church. Where
this is lost, the Title is lost; and so the true Seed, to which the
Promise is, and to which the Inheritance is due, becomes extinguished
in them, and they become dead as to it: And so it retires, and devolves
itself again into Christ, who is the righteous _Heir of Life_; and he
gives the Title and true Right again immediately to whom it pleaseth
him, even to as many as being turned to his _pure Light_ in their
_Consciences_, come again to walk in his _righteous_ and _innocent
Life_, and so become true Members of his _Body_, which is the _Church_.
So the Authority, Power and Heirship are not annexed to Persons, as
they bear the mere Names, or retain a Form, holding the bare Shell
or Shadow of _Christianity_; but the Promise is to _Christ_, and to
the _Seed_, in whom the Authority is inherent, and in as many as are
one with him, and united unto him by Purity and Holiness, and by the
inward Renovation and Regeneration of their Minds.

Moreover, this pretended Succession is contrary to Scripture
Definitions, and the Nature of the Church of Christ, and of the true
Members. [Sidenote: I. _The House of God is no polluted Nest; no
_Atheist_ nor _Pretender_ can rest there._] For, _First, The Church
is the House of God, the Pillar and Ground of Truth_, 1 Tim. iii.
15. But according to this Doctrine, the _House of God_ is a polluted
Nest of all Sort of Wickedness and Abominations, made up of the most
ugly, defiled, and perverse Stones that are in the Earth; where the
Devil rules in all Manner of Unrighteousness. For so our Adversaries
confess, and History informs, the _Church_ of _Rome_ to have been,
as some of their _Historians_ acknowledge; and if that be truly the
_House of God_, what may we call the _House of Satan_? Or may we call
it therefore the _House of God_, notwithstanding all this Impiety,
because they had a bare Form, and that vitiated many Ways also; and
because they pretended to the Name of _Christianity_, though they were
_Antichristian_, _Devilish_, and _Atheistical_ in their whole Practice
and Spirit, and also in many of their Principles? Would not this infer
yet a greater Absurdity, as if they had been something to be accounted
of, because of their Hypocrisy and Deceit, and false Pretences?
Whereas the Scripture looks upon that as an Aggravation of Guilt, and
calls it _Blasphemy_, Rev. ii. 9. Of two wicked Men, he is most to
be abhorred, who covereth his Wickedness with a vain Pretence of God
and Righteousness: Even so these _abominable Beasts_, and _fearful
Monsters_, who looked upon themselves to be _Bishops_ in the _Apostate
Church_, were never a Whit the better, that they falsely pretended to
be the Successors of the holy Apostles; unless to lie be commendable,
and that Hypocrisy be the Way to Heaven. Yea, were not this to fall
into that Evil condemned among the Jews, _Jer._ vii. 4. _Trust ye not
in lying Words, saying, The Temple of the Lord, the Temple of the Lord,
the Temple of the Lord are these; throughly amend your Ways_, &c. as if
such outward Names and Things were the Thing the Lord regarded, and not
inward Holiness? Or can that then be the Pillar and Ground of Truth,
which is the very Sink and Pit of Wickedness, from which so much
Error, Superstition, Idolatry, and all Abomination spring? Can there be
any Thing more contrary both to Scripture and Reason?

[Sidenote: II.] [Sidenote: _Christ is the _Head_, his _Body_
undefiled._] _Secondly_, The Church is defined _to be the Kingdom
of the dear Son of God, into which the Saints are translated, being
delivered from the Power of Darkness. It is called the _Body of
Christ_, which from him by Joints and Bands having Nourishment
ministered and knit together, increaseth with the Increase of God_,
Col. ii. 19. But can such Members, such a Gathering as we have
demonstrated that Church and Members to be, among whom they allege
their pretended Authority to have been preserved, and through which
they derive their Call; can such, I say, be the Body of Christ, or
Members thereof? Or is Christ the Head of such a corrupt, dead, dark,
abominable stinking Carcase? If so, then might we not as well affirm
against the Apostle, 2 _Cor._ vi. 14. [Sidenote: _What Fellowship
hath Christ with _Belial_?_] _That Righteousness hath Fellowship with
Unrighteousness, that Light hath Communion with Darkness, that Christ
hath Concord with Belial, that a Believer hath Part with an Infidel,
and that the Temple of God hath Agreement with Idols?_ Moreover no Man
is called the _Temple of God_, nor of the _Holy Ghost_, but as his
Vessel is purified, and so be fitted and prepared for God to dwell
in; and many thus fitted by Christ become his Body, in and among whom
he dwells and walks, according as it is written, _I will dwell in
them, and walk in them, and I will be their God, and they shall be my
People_. It is therefore that we may become the _Temple of Christ_
and _People of God_, that the Apostle in the following Verse exhorts,
saying out of the Prophet, [85]_Wherefore come out from among them, and
be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean Thing, and I
will receive you; and I will be a Father unto you, and ye shall be my
Sons and Daughters, saith the Lord Almighty_. But to what Purpose is
all this Exhortation? And why should we separate from the Unclean, if a
mere outward Profession and Name be enough to make the true Church; and
if the Unclean and Polluted were both the Church and lawful Successors
of the Apostles, inheriting their Authority, and transmitting it to
others? Yea, how can the Church be the _Kingdom of the Son of God_, as
contra-distinguished from the _Kingdom and Power of Darkness_? And what
Need, yea, what Possibility of being translated out of the one into
the other, if those that make up the Kingdom and Power of Darkness be
real Members of the true Church of Christ; and not simply Members only,
but the very Pastors and Teachers of it? But how do they _increase in
the Increase of God, and receive spiritual Nourishment from Christ the
Head_, that are Enemies of him in their Hearts by wicked Works, and
openly go into Perdition? [Sidenote: Priests _frivolous Distinction
of _Enemies_ to God by _Practice_, and _Members_ of his Church by_
Office.] Verily as no metaphysical and nice Distinctions, that though
they were practically as to their own private States Enemies to God and
Christ, and so Servants of Satan; yet they were, by Virtue of their
Office, Members and Ministers of the Church, and so able to transmit
the Succession; I say, as such invented and frivolous Distinctions will
not please the Lord God, neither will he be deluded by such, nor make
up the glorious Body of his Church with such mere outside hypocritical
Shews, nor be beholden to such painted Sepulchres to be Members of his
Body, which is found, pure, and undefiled, and therefore he needs not
such false and corrupt Members to make up the Defects of it; so neither
will such Distinctions satisfy truly tender and Christian Consciences;
especially considering the Apostle is so far from desiring us to regard
this, that we are expresly commanded to _turn away from such as have a
Form of Godliness, but deny the Power of it_. For we may well object
against these, as the poor Man did against the proud Prelate, that
went about to cover his vain and unchristian-like Sumptuousness, by
distinguishing that it _was not as Bishop but as Prince he had all
that Splendor_. [Sidenote: _The Answer of a _poor Rustick_ to a _proud
Prelate.] To which the poor Rustic wisely is said to have answered,
_When the Prince goeth to Hell, what shall become of the Prelate?_ And
indeed this were to suppose the Body of Christ to be defective, and
that to fill up these defective Places, he puts counterfeit and dead
Stuff instead of real living Members; like such as lose their Eyes,
Arms, or Legs, who make counterfeit ones of Wood or Glass instead of
them. But we cannot think so of Christ, neither can we believe, for
the Reasons above adduced, that either we are to account, or that
Christ doth account, any Man or Men a Whit the more Members of his
Body, because though they be really wicked, they hypocritically and
deceitfully clothe themselves with his Name, and pretend to it; for
this is contrary to his own Doctrine, where he saith expresly, _John_
xv. 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, &c. That _he is the Vine, and his Disciples are
the Branches; that except they abide in him, they cannot bear Fruit;
and if they be unfruitful, they shall be cast forth as a Branch, and
wither_. [Sidenote: _A withered Branch can draw no Nourishment, so has
no Life nor Virtue._] Now I suppose these cut and withered Branches are
no more true Branches nor Members of the Vine; they can no more draw
Sap nor Nourishment from it, after that they are cut off, and so have
no more Virtue, Sap, nor Life: What have they then to boast or glory of
any Authority, seeing they want that Life, Virtue, and Nourishment from
which all Authority comes? So such Members of Christ as are become dead
to him through Unrighteousness, and so derive no more Virtue nor Life
from him, are cut off by their Sins, and wither, and have no longer any
true or real Authority, and their boasting of any is but an Aggravation
of their Iniquity by Hypocrisy and Deceit. But further, would not this
make Christ’s Body a mere Shadow and Phantasm? Yea, would it not make
him the Head of a lifeless, rotten, stinking Carcase, having only some
little outward false Shew, while inwardly full of Rottenness and Dirt?
[Sidenote: _A living Head upon a lifeless Body, what a _Monster_ would
that be?_] And what a Monster would these Men make of Christ’s Body,
by assigning it a real, pure, living, quick Head, full of Virtue and
Life, and yet tied to such a dead lifeless Body as we have already
described these Members to be, which they allege to have been the
Church of Christ? Again, the Members of the _Church of Christ_ are
specified by this Definition, to wit, as being the _sanctified in
Christ Jesus_, 1 Cor. i. 2. But this Notion of _Succession_ supposeth
not only some unsanctified Members to be of the _Church of Christ_,
but even the Whole to consist of unsanctified Members; yea, that such
as were professed _Necromancers_ and open Servants of _Satan_ were the
true Successors of the Apostles, and in whom the Apostolick Authority
resided, these being the Vessels through whom this Succession is
transmitted; though many of them, as all _Protestants_ and also some
_Papists_ confess, attained these Offices in the (so called) _Church_
not only by such Means as _Simon Magus_ sought it, but by much worse,
even by Witchcraft, Traditions, Money, Treachery, and Murder, which
_Platina_ himself confesseth[86] of divers Bishops of _Rome_.

[85] 2 Cor. 6. 17, 18.

[86] In the Life of _Benedict_ 4. of _John_ 16. of _Sylvester_ 3.
of _Boniface_ 8. of _Steph._ 6. of _Joan_ 8. Also _Onuphrius_’s
Annotations upon this _Papess_ (or _Popess_) towards the End.

§. XI. But such as object not this Succession of the Church, which
yet most _Protestants_ begin now to do, distinguish in this Matter,
affirming, _That in a great Apostasy, such as was that of the Church of
_Rome_, God may raise up some singularly by his Spirit, who from the
Testimony of the Scriptures perceiving the Errors into which such as
bear the Name of _Christians_ are fallen, may instruct and teach them,
and then become authorized by the People’s joining with and accepting
of their Ministry only._ Most of them also will affirm, _That the
Spirit herein is subjective, and not objective_.

[Sidenote: Object.] But they say, That _where a Church is reformed_
(such as they pretend the _Protestant_ Churches are) _there an Ordinary
orderly Call is necessary; and that of the Spirit, as extraordinary,
is not to be sought after_: Alleging, that _Res aliter se habet in
ecclesiâ constituendâ, quàm in ecclesiâ constitutâ_; that is, _There
is a Difference in the constituting of a Church, and after it is

[Sidenote: _Answ._] [Sidenote: _A Difference objected between
_Constituting_ a _Church_ and one as _Constituted.] I answer, This
_Objection_ as to us saith nothing, seeing we accuse, and are ready
from the Scriptures to prove the _Protestants_ guilty of gross Errors,
and needing Reformation, as well as they did and do the _Papists_;
and therefore we may justly lay Claim, if we would, to the same
extraordinary Call, having the same Reason for it, and as good Evidence
to prove ours as they had for theirs. As for that Maxim, viz. _That the
Case is different in constituting a Church, and a Church constituted_,
I do not deny it; and therefore there may be a greater Measure of
Power required to the one than to the other, and God in his Wisdom
distributes the same as he sees meet; but that the same immediate
Assistance of the Spirit is not necessary for Ministers in a gathered
Church as well as in gathering one, I see no solid Reason alleged for
it: For surely Christ’s Promise was _to be with his_ Children _to the
End of the World_, and they need him no less to preserve and guide his
Church and Children than to gather and beget them. Nature taught the
_Gentiles_ this Maxim,

    _Non minor est virtus, quam quærere, parta tueri._

To defend what we attain, requires no less Strength than what is
    necessary to acquire it.

For it is by this inward and immediate Operation of the Spirit, which
Christ hath promised _to lead his Children _with_ into all Truth_, and
to _teach them all Things_, that Christians are to be led in all Steps,
as well last as first, which relate to _God’s Glory_ and their own
_Salvation_, as we have heretofore sufficiently proved, and therefore
need not now repeat it. [Sidenote: _It is a Device of Satan for Men
to put the _Spirit’s Leadings_ far off to former Times._] And truly
this Device of _Satan_, whereby he has got People to put the immediate
Guidings and Leadings of God’s Spirit as an extraordinary Thing afar
off, which their _Forefathers_ had, but which they now are neither to
wait for nor expect, is a great Cause of the growing _Apostasy_ upon
the many gathered Churches, and is one great Reason why a dry, dead,
barren, lifeless, spiritless Ministry, which leavens the People into
the same Death, doth so much abound, and is so much overspreading even
the _Protestant Nations_, that their Preaching and Worships, as well as
their whole Conversation, is not to be discerned from _Popish_ by any
fresh living Zeal, or lively Power of the Spirit accompanying it, but
merely by the Difference of some Notions and Opinions.

§. XII. [Sidenote: Object.] Some unwise and unwary _Protestants_ do
sometimes object to us, _That if we have such an immediate Call as we
lay Claim to, we ought to confirm it by Miracles_.

[Sidenote: _Answ._] But this being an Objection once and again urged
against the _Primitive Protestants_ by the _Papists_, we need but
in short return the Answer to it that they did to the _Papists_, to
wit, [Sidenote: _Whether _Miracles_ be now necessary to confirm the
_Gospel_?_] That _we need not Miracles, because we preach no new
Gospel, but that which is already confirmed by all the Miracles of
Christ and his Apostles; and that we offer nothing but that which we
are ready and able to confirm by the Testimony of the Scriptures,
which both already acknowledge to be true_: [Sidenote: John Baptist
_and divers _Prophets_ did none._] And that _John_ the _Baptist_ and
divers of the _Prophets_ did none that we hear of, and yet were both
immediately and extraordinarily sent. This is the common _Protestant
Answer_, therefore may suffice in this Place; though, if Need were, I
could say more to this Purpose, but that I study Brevity.

§. XIII. [Sidenote: _The Constitution of the _Independent_ Church._]
There is also another Sort of _Protestants_, to wit, the _English
Independents_, who differing from the _Calvinistical Presbyterians_,
and denying the Necessity of this _Succession_, or the Authority of
any _National Church_, take another Way; affirming, _That such as
have the Benefit of the Scriptures, any Company of People agreeing
in the Principles of Truth as they find them here declared, may
constitute among themselves a _Church_, without the Authority of any
other, and may choose to themselves a _Pastor_, who by the _Church_
thus constituted and consenting, is authorized_, requiring only the
Assistance and Concurrence of the _Pastors_ of the neighbouring
Churches, if any such there be; not so much as absolutely necessary to
authorize, as decent for Order’s Sake. [Sidenote: _Gifted Brethren._]
Also they go so far as to affirm, _That in a _Church_ so constituted,
any gifted Brother, _as they call them,_ if he find himself qualified
thereto, may instruct, exhort, and preach in the _Church_; though, as
not having the _Pastoral Office_, he cannot administer those which they
call their _Sacraments.

To this I answer, That this was a good Step out of the _Babylonish
Darkness_, and no Doubt did proceed from a real Discovery of the
_Truth_, and from the Sense of a great Abuse of the promiscuous
_National Gatherings_. Also this Preaching of the _gifted Brethren_, as
they called them, did proceed at first from certain _lively Touches_
and _Movings_ of the Spirit of God upon many; but alas! [Sidenote:
_Their Loss and Decay._] because they went not forward, that is much
decayed among them; and the _Motions_ of God’s Spirit begin to be
denied and rejected among them now, as much as by others.

[Sidenote: _The Scriptures give no Call to Persons _Individual.]
But as to their _pretended Call from the Scripture_, I answer, The
Scripture gives a mere Declaration of true Things, but no Call to
particular Persons; so that though I believe the Things there written
to be true, and deny the Errors which I find there testified against,
yet as to those Things which may be my particular Duty, I am still to
seek; and therefore I can never be resolved in the Scripture whether I
(such a one by Name) ought to be a Minister? And for the resolving this
Doubt I must needs recur to the inward and immediate Testimony of the
Spirit, as in the Proposition concerning the _Scriptures_ is shewn more
at large.

§. XIV. From all this then we do firmly conclude, that not only in a
general _Apostasy_ it is needful Men be extraordinarily called, and
raised up by the Spirit of God, but that even when several Assemblies
or Churches are gathered by the Power of God, not only into the Belief
of the Principles of Truth, so as to deny Errors and Heresies, but also
into the Life, Spirit, and Power of Christianity, so as to be the Body
and House of Christ indeed, and a fit Spouse for him, [Sidenote: _True
Ministers Qualifications, Call and Title._] that he who gathers them
doth also, for the preserving them in a lively, fresh, and powerful
Condition, raise up and move among them by the inward immediate
Operation of his own Spirit, _Ministers_ and _Teachers_, to instruct
and teach, and watch over them, who being thus called, are manifest
in the Hearts of their _Brethren_, and their Call is thus verified in
them, who by the feeling of that Life and Power that passeth through
them, being inwardly builded up by them daily in the _most holy Faith_,
become the Seals of their _Apostleship_. And this is answerable to
another Saying of the same Apostle _Paul_, 2 Cor. xiii. 3. [Sidenote:
_Their laying on of Hands a Mock to God and Man; a keeping the Shadow,
whilst the Substance is wanting._] _Since ye seek a Proof of Christ’s
Speaking in me, which to you-wards is not weak, but is mighty in you._
So this is that which gives a _true substantial Call_ and _Title_ to
a _Minister_, whereby he is a real Successor of the Virtue, Life, and
Power that was in the Apostles, and not of the bare Name: And to such
Ministers we think the outward Ceremony of _Ordination_; or _laying
on of Hands_ not necessary, neither can we see the Use of it, seeing
our Adversaries who use it acknowledge that the Virtue and Power of
communicating the _Holy Ghost_ by it is ceased among them. And is it
not then foolish and ridiculous for them, by an _apish Imitation_, to
keep up the Shadow, where the Substance is wanting? And may not they
by the same Rule, where they see blind and lame Men, in Imitation of
Christ and his Apostles, bid them _see_ and _walk_? Yea, is it not in
them a Mocking of God and Men, to put on their Hands, and bid them
_receive the Holy Ghost_, while they believe the Thing impossible,
and confess that that _Ceremony_ hath no real Effect? Having thus
far spoken of the _Call_, I shall proceed next to treat of the
_Qualifications_ and _Work_ of a true Minister.

§. XV. [Sidenote: Quest. 2.] [Sidenote: _The Qualification of a_
Minister.] As I have placed the true _Call_ of a _Minister_ in the
_Motion_ of this _Holy Spirit_, so is the _Power_, _Life_, and _Virtue_
thereof, and the pure _Grace of God_ that comes therefrom, the _chief_
and _most necessary Qualification_, without which he can no Ways
perform his Duty, neither acceptably to God nor beneficially to Men.
[Sidenote: Philosophy _and_ School-Divinity _will never make a_ Gospel
Minister.] Our Adversaries in this Case affirm, that _three Things_ go
to the making up of a Minister, _viz._ 1. _Natural Parts_, that he be
not a Fool. 2. _Acquired Parts_, that he be learned in the Languages,
in Philosophy and School Divinity. 3. _The Grace of God._

The _two first_ they reckon necessary to the Being of a Minister, so
as a Man cannot be one without them; the _Third_ they say goeth to the
Well-being of one, but not to the Being; so that a Man may truly be
a lawful Minister without it, and ought to be heard and received as
such. But we, supposing a natural Capacity, that one be not an Ideot,
judge the _Grace of God_ indispensibly necessary to the very Being of a
Minister, as that without which any can neither be a true, nor lawful,
nor good Minister. As for _Letter-learning_, we judge it not so much
necessary to the Well-being of one, though accidentally sometimes in
certain Respects it may concur, but more frequently it is hurtful than
helpful, [Sidenote: _A poor _Laick_ instructed the learned _Taulerus.]
as appeared in the Example of _Taulerus_, who being a learned Man,
and who could make an eloquent Preaching, needed nevertheless to be
instructed in the Way of the Lord by a poor _Laick_. I shall first
speak of the _Necessity of Grace_, and then proceed to say something of
that Literature which they judge so needful.

[Sidenote: Proof 1.] _First_ then, as we said in the _Call_, so may we
much more here, if the _Grace of God_ be a necessary _Qualification_
to make one a _true Christian_, it must be a _Qualification_ much
more necessary to constitute a _true Minister of Christianity_.
That _Grace_ is necessary to make one a _true Christian_ I think
will not be questioned, since it is _by Grace we are saved_, Ephes.
ii. 8. [Sidenote: _God’s Grace alone doth constitute a true and
lawful _Teacher.] It is the _Grace of God that teacheth us to deny
Ungodliness, and the Lusts of this World, and to live godly and
righteously_, Tit. ii. 11. Yea, Christ saith expresly, _That without
him we can do nothing_, John xv. 5. and the Way whereby Christ helpeth,
assisteth, and worketh with us, is by his _Grace_: Hence he saith to
_Paul_, _My Grace is sufficient for thee_. A Christian without _Grace_
is indeed no Christian, but an Hypocrite, and a false Pretender. Then
I say, _If Grace be necessary to a private Christian, far more to a
Teacher among Christians, who must be as a Father and Instructor of
others, seeing this Dignity is bestowed upon such as have attained a
greater Measure than their Brethren. Even _Nature_ itself may teach as
that there is more required in a Teacher than in those that are taught,
and that the Master must be above and before the Scholar in that Art
or Science which he teacheth others. Since then Christianity cannot
be truly enjoyed, neither any Man denominated a Christian without the
true Grace of God, therefore neither can any Man be a true and lawful
Teacher of Christianity without it._

[Sidenote: Proof 2.] _Secondly_, No Man can be a _Minister_ of the
_Church_ of _Christ_, which is his _Body_, unless he be a Member of the
_Body_, and receive of the Virtue and Life of the _Head_:

[Sidenote: Arg.] [Sidenote: _Who first must be a Member of the Body,
and then Life is received, and Virtue from the Head._] But he that hath
not _true Grace_ can neither be a Member of the _Body_, neither receive
of that Life and Nourishment which comes from the _Head_:

Therefore far less can he be a _Minister_ to edify the _Body_.

That he cannot be a Minister, who is not a Member, is evident; because
he who is not a Member is shut out and cut off, and hath no Place in
the _Body_; whereas the Ministers are counted among the most eminent
Members of the _Body_. But no Man can be a Member unless he receive of
the Virtue, Life, and Nourishment of the _Head_; for the Members that
receive not this Life and Nourishment decay and wither, and then are
cut off. And that every true Member doth thus receive Nourishment and
Life from the _Head_, the Apostle expresly affirmeth, _Ephes._ iv. 16.
_From whom the whole Body being fitly joined together, and compacted by
that which every Joint supplieth, according to the effectual Working
in the Measure of every Part, makes Increase of the Body unto the
Edifying of itself in Love_. Now this that thus is communicated, and
which thus uniteth the Whole, is no other than the _Grace of God_; and
therefore the Apostle in the same Chapter, _Ver. 7_. saith, _But unto
every one of us is given Grace according to the Measure of the Gift of
Christ_; and _Ver._ 11. he sheweth how that _by this Grace and Gift
both Apostles, Prophets, Evangelists, Pastors, and Teachers are given
for the Work of the Ministry, and edifying of the Body of Christ_. And
certainly then no Man destitute of Grace is fit for this Work, seeing
that all that Christ gives are so _qualified_; and these that are not
so _qualified_, are not given nor sent of Christ, are not to be heard,
nor received, nor acknowledged as _Ministers of the Gospel_, because
his Sheep neither ought nor will hear the _Voice of a Stranger_.
[Sidenote: _The Sheep of Christ, neither ought, nor will hear the
Stranger’s Voice_.] This is also clear from 1 _Cor._ xii. throughout;
for the Apostle in that Chapter, treating of the _Diversity of Gifts_
and _Members of the Body_, sheweth how by the _Workings_ of the _same
Spirit_ in different _Manifestations_ or _Measures_ in the several
Members of the _Body_ the whole _Body_ is edified, saying, _Ver._ 13.
That _we are all baptized by the one Spirit into one Body_; and then,
_Ver._ 28. he numbers up the several _Dispensations_ thereof, which by
God are set in the Church through the various Workings of his Spirit
for the Edification of the Whole. Then if there be no true Member of
the Body which is not thus baptized by the Spirit, neither any Thing
that worketh to the Edifying of it, but according to a Measure of
Grace received from the Spirit, surely without Grace none ought to be
admitted to work or labour in the Body, because their Labour and Work,
without this Grace and Spirit, would be but ineffectual.

§. XVI. [Sidenote: Proof 3.] _Thirdly_, That this _Grace_ and _Gift_
is a _necessary Qualification_ to a _Minister_, is clear from that of
the Apostle _Peter_, 1 Pet. iv. 10, 11. _As every Man hath received
the Gift, even so minister the same one to another, as good Stewards
of the manifold Grace of God. If any Man speak, let him speak as the
Oracles of God: If any Man minister, let him do it as of the Ability
which God giveth; that God in all Things may be glorified through
Jesus Christ; to whom be Praise and Dominion for ever, Amen._ From
which it appears, that those that _minster_ must _minister_ according
to the _Gift_ and _Grace_ received; but they that have not such
a _Gift_, cannot _minister_ according thereunto. [Sidenote: _The
ministering must be by the Gift and Grace received._] Secondly, _As
good Stewards of the manifold Grace of God_: But how can a Man be a
_good Steward_ of that which he hath not? Can ungodly Men, that are
not gracious themselves, be _good Stewards_ of the manifold _Grace of
God_? [Sidenote: Good _Stewardship of what? Of _God’s abounding Grace_,
which is the _Ability_ and _Stewardship_ received._] And therefore in
the following Verses he makes an exclusive Limitation of such that
are not thus furnished, saying, _If any Man speak, let him speak as
the Oracles of God; and if any Man minister, let him do it as of the
Ability that God giveth_: Which is as much as if he had said, they
that cannot thus _speak_, and thus _minister_, ought not to do it: For
this [_If_] denotes a necessary Condition. Now what this _Ability_
is, is manifest by the former Words, to wit, the _Gift_ received, and
the _Grace_ whereof they are _Stewards_, as by the immediate Context
and Dependency of the Words doth appear. Neither can it be understood
of a mere natural Ability, because Man in this Condition is said
_not to know the Things of God_, and so he cannot _minister_ them to
others. And the following Words shew this also, in that he immediately
subjoineth, _that God in all Things may be glorified_; but surely God
is not glorified, but greatly dishonoured, when natural Men, from their
mere natural Ability, meddle in spiritual Things, which they neither
know nor understand.

[Sidenote: Proof 4.] _Fourthly_, That _Grace_ is a most necessary
_Qualification_ for a _Minister_, appears by those Qualifications
which the Apostle expresly requires, 1 _Tim._ iii. 2. _Tit._ i. _&c._
where he saith, _A Bishop must be blameless, vigilant, sober, of good
Behaviour, apt to teach, patient, a Lover of Good Men, just, holy,
temperate, as the Steward of God, holding fast the faithful Word as he
hath been taught_. Upon the other Hand, _He must neither be given to
Wine, nor a Striker, nor covetous, nor proud, nor self-willed, nor soon
angry_. [Sidenote: _How can a _Bishop_ have these Virtues without the
_Grace of God_?_] Now I ask, If it be not impossible that a Man can
have all these above-named Virtues, and be free of all these Evils,
without the _Grace of God_? If then these Virtues, for the producing
of which in a Man Grace is absolutely necessary, be necessary to make
a true _Minister_ of the Church of Christ according to the Apostle’s
Judgment, surely Grace must be necessary also.

[Sidenote: _Whatsoever is done in the Church without the Ministry
of God’s Spirit, is vain and wicked._] Concerning this Thing a
learned Man, and well skilled in _Antiquity_, about the Time of the
_Reformation_, writeth thus: “Whatsoever is done in the Church,
either for Ornament or Edification of Religion, whether in choosing
Magistrates or instituting Ministers of the Church, except it be done
by the Ministry of God’s Spirit, which is as it were the Soul of the
Church, it is vain and wicked. For whoever hath not been called by the
Spirit of God to the great Office of God and Dignity of Apostleship, as
_Aaron_ was, and hath not entered in by the Door, which is _Christ_,
but hath otherways risen in the Church by the Window, by the Favours
of Men, _&c._ truly such a one is not the Vicar of Christ and his
Apostles, but a Thief and Robber, and the Vicar of _Judas Iscariot_
and _Simon_ the _Samaritan_. [Sidenote: _Who is _Judas Iscariot_’s
Vicar?_] Hence it was so strictly appointed concerning the Election of
_Prelates_, which holy _Dionysius_ calls the Sacrament of Nomination,
that the Bishops and Apostles who should oversee the Service of the
Church should be Men of most intire Manners and Life, powerful in sound
Doctrine, to give a Reason for all Things.” So also another,[87] about
the same Time, writes thus: “Therefore it can never be, that by the
Tongues or Learning any can give a sound Judgment concerning the holy
Scriptures, and the Truth of God. _Lastly_,” saith he, “the Sheep of
Christ seeks nothing but the Voice of Christ, which he knoweth by the
Holy Spirit, wherewith he is filled: He regards not Learning, Tongues,
or any outward Thing, so as therefore to believe this or that to be the
Voice of Christ, his true Shepherd; he knoweth that there is Need of no
other Thing but the _Testimony_ of the _Spirit of God_.”

[87] _Franciscus Lambertus Avenionensis_, in his Book concerning
_Prophecy_, _Learning_, _Tongues_, and the _Spirit of Prophecy_.
Argent. _excus. Anno 1516_, de _Prov._ Cap. 24.

§. XVII. [Sidenote: Obj. 1.] Against this absolute Necessity of _Grace_
they object, _That if all Ministers had the saving Grace of God, then
all Ministers should be saved; seeing none can fall away from or lose
saving Grace_.

[Sidenote: _Answ._] But this Objection is built upon a false
Hypothesis, purely denied by us; and we have in the former Proposition
concerning _Perseverance_ already refuted it.

[Sidenote: Obj. 2.] _Secondly_, It may be objected to us, _That since
we affirm that every Man hath a Measure of true and saving Grace, there
needs no singular Qualification either to a Christian or Minister; for
seeing every Man hath this Grace, then no Man needs forbear to be a
Minister for want of Grace_.

[Sidenote: _Answ._] I answer, We have above shewn that there is
necessary to the making a Minister a _special_ and _particular Call_
from the Spirit of God, which is something besides the universal
Dispensation of _Grace_ to all, according to that of the Apostle,[88]
_No Man taketh this Honour unto himself, but he that is called of God_,
_as was_ Aaron. Moreover, we understand by _Grace_ as a _Qualification_
to a _Minister_, not the mere Measure of _Light_, as it is given to
reprove and call him to Righteousness; [Sidenote: _All have God’s
Grace, which calls to Righteousness, but all are not so leavened into
its Nature as to bring forth Fruits, of a blameless holy Life._] but
we understand _Grace_ as it hath converted the Soul, and operateth
powerfully in it, as hereafter, concerning the _Work of Ministers_,
will further appear. So we understand not Men simply as having _Grace_
in them as a _Seed_, which we indeed affirm _all_ have in a Measure;
but we understand _Men_ that are _gracious_, leavened by it into
the Nature thereof, so as thereby to bring forth those good Fruits
of a blameless Conversation, and of Justice, Holiness, Patience,
and Temperance, which the Apostle requires as necessary in a true
_Christian Bishop_ and _Minister_.

[88] Heb. 5. 4.

[Sidenote: Obj. 3.] _Thirdly_, They[89] object the _Example of the
false Prophets, of the Pharisees, and of_ Judas.

[89] So _Nic. Arnoldus Sect. 32._ upon _Thesis 4_.

[Sidenote: _Answ._] But _First_, As to the _false Prophets_, there can
nothing be more foolish and ridiculous; as if because there were _false
Prophets_, really _false_, without the Grace of God, therefore Grace is
not necessary to a true Christian Minister. [Sidenote: _The _false_ not
the _true Prophets_ want the Grace of God._] Indeed if they had proved
that _true Prophets_ wanted this Grace, they had said something; but
what have _false Prophets_ common with _true Ministers_, but that they
pretend falsely that which they have not? And because _false Prophets_
want true Grace, will it therefore follow, that _true Prophets_ ought
not to have it, that they may be _true_ and not _false_? The Example
of the _Pharisees_ and _Priests_ under the _Law_ will not answer to
the _Gospel Times_, because God set apart a particular _Tribe_ for
that Service, and particular _Families_, to whom it belonged by a
_lineal Succession_; [Sidenote: _The Service under the Law was not
purely Spiritual, but Figurative; for the Performance of which, as they
behoved to be purified from their outward Pollutions: So the Ministers
of the _Gospel_ must be inwardly without Blemish_.] and also their
Service and Work was not purely spiritual, but only the Performance
of some outward and carnal Observations and Ceremonies, which were
but a Shadow of the Substance that was to come; and therefore their
Work _made not the Comers thereunto perfect, as appertaining to the
Conscience_, seeing they were appointed only according to the _Law of
carnal Commandment_, and not according to the _Power of an endless
Life_. Notwithstanding as in the Figure they were to be _without
Blemish_ as to their outward Man, and in the Performance of their Work
they were to be washed and purified from their outward Pollutions, so
now, under the _Gospel Times_, the _Ministers_ in the Anti-type must
be inwardly _without Blemish in their Souls and Spirits_, being, as
the Apostle requires, _blameless_, and in their Work and Service must
be _pure_ and _undefiled_ from their inward Pollutions, and so _clean_
and _holy_, _that they may offer up spiritual Sacrifices acceptable to
God by Jesus Christ_, 1 Pet. ii. 5. As to _Judas_, the Season of his
_Ministry_ was not wholly Evangelical, as being before the Work was
_finished_, and while Christ himself and his Disciples were yet subject
to the _Jewish Observances_ and _Constitutions_, and therefore his
Commission, as well as that which the rest received with him at that
Time, was _only to the House of_ Israel, _Matt._ x. 5, 6. by Virtue of
that Commission, [Sidenote: _The Ministry of the Disciples of Christ
before the Work was finished, was more _Legal_ than _Evangelical.]
therefore the rest of the Apostles were not impowered to go forth and
preach after the Resurrection, until they had waited at _Jerusalem_ for
the pouring forth of the Spirit: So that it appears _Judas’s Ministry_
was more _legal_ than _Evangelical_. [Sidenote: Judas _was immediately
called of Christ, and preached freely, which our Adversaries will not
do; although they make him a Pattern of their graceless Ministry,
saying, he had not the least Measure of God’s Grace at that Time._]
_Secondly_, _Judas_’s Case, as all will acknowledge, was singular
and extraordinary, he being _immediately called_ by Christ himself,
and accordingly _furnished_ and _impowered_ by him to preach, and do
Miracles; which _immediate Commission_ our Adversaries do not so much
as pretend to, and so fall short of _Judas_, who trusted in Christ’s
Words, and therefore went forth and preached, _without Gold or Silver,
or Scrip for his Journey; giving freely_ as he had _freely received_;
which our Adversaries will not do, as hereafter shall be observed:
Also that _Judas_ at that Time had not the least Measure of God’s
Grace, I have not as yet heard proved. But is it not sad, that even
_Protestants_ should lay aside the eleven good and faithful Apostles,
and all the rest of the holy Disciples and Ministers of Christ, and
betake them to that one, of whom it was testified that he was a
_Devil_, for a Pattern and Example to their _Ministry_? Alas! it is to
be regretted, that too many of them resemble this Pattern over-much.

[Sidenote: Obj.] Another _Objection_ is usually made against the
Necessity of Grace, [90]_That in Case it were necessary, then such as
wanted it could not truly administer the Sacraments; and consequently
the People would be left in Doubts and infinite Scruples, or not
knowing certainly whether they had truly received them, because not
knowing infallibly whether the Administrators were truly gracious Men._

[90] _Ibid._ Nic. Arnoldus.

[Sidenote: _Answ._] But this Objection hitteth not us at all, because
the Nature of that _Spiritual_ and _Christian Worship_, which we
according to the Truth plead for, is such as is not necessarily
attended with these carnal and outward Institutions, from the
administering of which the Objection ariseth; and so hath not any such
Absurdity following upon it, as will afterwards more clearly appear.

§. XVIII. [Sidenote: _What _true Learning_ is._] Though then we make
not _Human Learning_ necessary, yet we are far from excluding true
_Learning_; to wit, that _Learning_ which proceedeth from the inward
Teachings and Instructions of the Spirit, whereby the Soul learneth the
secret Ways of the Lord, becomes acquainted with many inward Travails
and Exercises of the Mind; and learneth by a living Experience how to
overcome Evil, and the Temptations of it, by _following the Lord_, and
_walking in his Light_, and _waiting daily for Wisdom and Knowledge
immediately from the Revelation thereof_; and so _layeth up_ these
heavenly and divine Lessons _in the good Treasure of the Heart_, as
honest _Mary_ did the Sayings which she heard, and Things which she
observed: And also out of this Treasure of the Soul, as the good
_Scribe_, brings forth Things _new and old_, according as the same
Spirit moves, and gives true Liberty, and as the Glory of God requires,
for whose Glory the Soul, _which is the Temple of God_, learneth to
do all Things. [Sidenote: _The good Learning which is necessary to
a true _Minister.] This is that good _Learning_ which we think
necessary to a true _Minister_; by and through which _Learning_ a Man
can well instruct, teach, and admonish in due Season, and testify for
God from a certain Experience; as did _David_, _Solomon_, and the holy
Prophets of old, and the blessed Apostles of our Lord Jesus Christ,
who _testified of what they had seen, heard, felt, and handled of the
Word of Life_, 1 John i. 1. _Ministering the Gift according as they
had received the same, as good Stewards of the manifold Grace of God_;
and preached not the uncertain Rumours of Men by _Hearsay_, which they
had gathered merely in the Comprehension, while they were Strangers to
the Thing in their own Experience in themselves: As to teach People
how to believe, while themselves were unbelieving, or how to overcome
Sin, while themselves are Slaves to it, as all ungracious Men are; or
to believe and hope for an eternal Reward, which themselves have not as
yet arrived at, _&c._

§. XIX. [Sidenote: _Literature is first the Knowledge of _Latin_,
_Greek_ and _Hebrew.] But let us examine this _Literature_, which
they make so necessary to the Being of a _Minister_; as in the first
Place, the Knowledge of the _Tongues_, at least of the _Latin_,
_Greek_, and _Hebrew_. The Reason of this is, That they may read the
Scripture, which is their only Rule, in the _Original Languages_, and
thereby be the more capable to comment upon it, and interpret it,
_&c._ That also which made this Knowledge be the more prized by the
_Primitive Protestants_, was indeed the dark Barbarity that was over
the World in the _Centuries_ immediately preceding the Reformation; the
Knowledge of the _Tongues_ being about that Time, (until it was even
then restored by _Erasmus_ and some others) almost lost and extinct.
[Sidenote: _Before the_ Reformation _the Prayers of the People were in
the_ Latin Tongue.] And this Barbarity was so much the more abominable,
that the whole Worship and Prayers of the People were in the _Latin
Tongue_; and among that vast Number of _Priests_, _Monks_ and _Friars_,
scarce one of a Thousand understood his Breviary, or that Mass which he
daily read and repeated: The Scripture being, not only to the People,
but to the greater Part of the Clergy, even as to the literal Knowledge
of it, as a sealed Book. [Sidenote: _The Zeal and Endeavours of the
first_ Reformers _commended_.] I shall not at all discommend the Zeal
that the _first Reformers_ had against this _Babylonish Darkness_,
nor their pious Endeavours to translate the _holy Scriptures_: I
do truly believe, according to their Knowledge, that they did it
candidly: [Sidenote: _The Knowledge of_ Languages _commendable, and_
Schools _necessary_.] And therefore to answer the just Desires of
those that desire to read them, and for other very good Reasons, as
maintaining a Commerce and Understanding among divers Nations by these
common Languages, and others of that Kind, we judge it necessary and
commendable that there be _publick Schools_ for the Teaching and
Instructing such Youth, as are inclinable thereunto, in the Languages.
And although that _Papal Ignorance_ deserved justly to be abhorred and
abominated, we see nevertheless, that the true _Reformation_ consists
not in that Knowledge; [Sidenote: _The _Papists_ Literature and
Knowledge, especially the _Jesuits.] because although since that Time
the _Papists_, stirred up through Emulation of the _Protestants_, have
more applied themselves to Literature, and it now more flourisheth in
their _Universities_ and _Cloysters_, than before, (especially in the
_Ignatian_ or _Jesuitick Sect_) they are as far now as ever from a
true _Reformation_, and more hardened in their pernicious _Doctrines_.
But all this will not make it a necessary Qualification to a Minister,
far less a more necessary Qualification than the Grace of God and his
Spirit; because the Spirit and Grace of God can make up this Want in
the most Rustick and Ignorant; but this Knowledge can no Ways make up
the Want of the Spirit in the most Learned and Eloquent. [Sidenote:
_The Spirit is the truest Interpreter of the Scriptures, whether
from the _Original Languages_, or without them._] For all that which
Man, by his own Industry, Learning and Knowledge in the _Languages_
can interpret of the Scriptures, or find out, is nothing without the
Spirit; he cannot be certain, but may still miss of the Sense of it:
Whereas a poor Man, that knoweth not a Letter, when he heareth the
Scriptures read, by the same Spirit he can say, _This is true_; and
by the same Spirit he can understand, open, and interpret it, if Need
be: Yea, finding his Condition to answer the Condition and Experience
of the Saints of old, he knoweth and possesseth the Truths there
delivered, because they are sealed and witnessed in his own Heart by
the same Spirit. And this we have plentiful Experience of in many of
those illiterate Men, whom God hath raised up to be _Ministers_ in his
Church in this Day; so that some such, by his Spirit, have corrected
some of the Errors of the _Translators_, as in the Third Proposition
concerning the _Scriptures_ I before observed. [Sidenote: _A poor
_Shoemaker_, that could not read, refutes a _Professor of Divinity’s_
false Assertions from Scripture._] Yea, I know myself a poor Shoemaker,
that cannot read a Word, who being assaulted with a false Citation
of Scripture, from a publick Professor of _Divinity_, before the
_Magistrate_ of a City, when he had been taken up for preaching to
some few that came to hear him; I say, I know such a one, and he is
yet alive, who though the Professor, who also is esteemed a learned
Man, constantly asserted his Saying to be a Scripture Sentence, yet
affirmed, not through any certain Letter-knowledge he had of it, but
from the most _certain Evidence of the Spirit in himself_, that the
_Professor_ was mistaken; and that the _Spirit of God_ never said any
such Thing as the other affirmed, and the _Bible_ being brought, it was
found as the poor _Shoemaker_ had said.

§. XX. [Sidenote: 2. Logick _and_ Philosophy _not needful to a
Preacher._] The second Part of their _Literature_ is _Logick_ and
_Philosophy_, an Art so little needful to a true Minister, that if one
that comes to be a true Minister hath had it, it is safest for him to
forget and lose it; for it is the Root and Ground of all Contention and
Debate, and the Way to make a Thing a great deal darker, than clearer.
For under the Pretence of regulating Man’s Reason into a certain Order
and Rules, that he may find out (as they pretend) the Truth, it leads
into such a Labyrinth of Contention, as is far more fit to make a
_Sceptick_ than a _Christian_, far less a Minister of Christ; yea, it
often hinders Man from a clear Understanding of Things that his own
Reason would give him; and therefore through its manifold Rules and
divers Inventions, it often gives Occasion for a Man, that hath little
Reason, foolishly to speak much to no Purpose; seeing a Man, that is
not very wise, may notwithstanding be a perfect _Logician_. And then,
if ye would make a Man a Fool to purpose that is not very wise, do but
teach him _Logick_ and _Philosophy_; and whereas before he might have
been fit for something, he shall then be good for nothing, but to speak
Nonsense; for these Notions will so swim in his Head, that they will
make him extremely busy about nothing. [Sidenote: _The Use of _Logick_
is to see its Emptiness._] The Use that wise and solid Men make of it,
is, to see the Emptiness thereof; therefore saith one, _It is an Art of
Contention and Darkness, by which all other Sciences are rendered more
obscure, and harder to be understood_.

If it be urged, _That thereby the Truth may be maintained and
confirmed, and Hereticks confuted_;

I answer, The Truth, in Men truly rational, needeth not the Help
thereof; and such as are obstinate, this will not convince; for by
this they may learn twenty Tricks and Distinctions, how to shut out
the Truth: And the Truth proceeding from an honest Heart, and spoken
forth from the Virtue and Spirit of God, will have more Influence, and
take sooner and more effectually, than by a thousand Demonstrations of
_Logick_; as that _Heathen Philosopher_[91][92] acknowledged, who,
disputing with the _Christian Bishops_, in the _Council_ of _Nice_, was
so subtile, that he could not be overcome by them; but yet by a few
Words spoken by a simple old _Rustick_, was presently convinced by him,
and converted to the Christian Faith; and being enquired how he came to
yield to that ignorant old Man, and not to the Bishops; he said, _That
they contended with him in his own Way, and he could still give Words
for Words; but there came from the old Man that Virtue, which he was
not able to resist_. This _secret Virtue_ and _Power_ ought to be the
_Logick_ and _Philosophy_ wherewith a true Christian Minister should
be furnished; and for which they need not be beholden to _Aristotle_.
[Sidenote: Natural Logick _useful_.] As to _natural Logick_, by which
rational Men, without that Art and Rules, or sophistical Learning,
deduce a certain Conclusion out of true Propositions, which scarce any
Man of Reason wants, we deny not the Use of it; and I have sometimes
used it in this Treatise; which also may serve without that _dialectick
Art_. [Sidenote: 3. Ethicks _or the_ Manner-Rules _to Christians not
needful._] As for the other Part of _Philosophy_, which is called
_Moral_, or _Ethicks_, it is not so necessary to Christians, who have
the Rules of the holy Scriptures, and the Gift of the Holy Spirit, by
which they can be much better instructed. [Sidenote: 4. Physicks, _and
the_ Metaphysicks _make no Preachers of the_ Truth.] The _Physical_
and _Metaphysical_ Part may be reduced to the Arts of _Medicine_ and
the _Mathematicks_, which have nothing to do with the Essence of a
_Christian Minister_. And therefore the Apostle _Paul_, who well
understood what was good for Christian Ministers, and what hurtful,
thus exhorted the _Colossians_, Col. ii. 8. _Beware lest any Man spoil
you through Philosophy and vain Deceit._ And to his beloved Disciple
_Timothy_ he writes also thus, 1 _Tim._ vi. 20. _O Timothy, keep that
which is committed to thy Trust, avoiding profane and vain Babblings,
and Opposition of Science, falsely so called._

[91] _An _Heathen Philosopher_ disputing with the _Bishops_ in the
Council of _Nice_, was converted to the _Christian Faith_ by an
ignorant old Man, when they could not._

[92] Lucæ Osiandri _Epit. Hist. Eccles. Lib._ 2. _Cap._ 5. Cent. 4.

§. XXI. [Sidenote: III. _The learned _School Divinity_ obnoxious; A
_Monster_; A Letter-Knowledge _Heathenized.] The third and main
Part of their Literature is _School Divinity_, a _Monster_, made
up of some _Scriptural Notions_ of _Truth_, and the _Heathenish
Terms_ and _Maxims_; being, as it were, the _Heathenish Philosophy
Christianized_, or rather, the _literal external Knowledge of Christ
Heathenized_. It is Man in his first, fallen, natural State, with
his devilish Wisdom, pleasing himself with some Notions of Truth,
and adorning them with his own sensual and carnal Wisdom, because he
thinks the Simplicity of the Truth too low and mean a Thing for him;
and so despiseth that Simplicity, wheresoever it is found, that he may
set up and exalt himself, puffed up with this his monstrous Birth.
It is the Devil, darkening, obscuring, and veiling the Knowledge of
God, with his serpentine and worldly Wisdom; that so he may the more
securely deceive the Hearts of the Simple, and make the Truth, as
it is in itself, despicable and hard to be known and understood, by
multiplying a thousand difficult and needless Questions, and endless
Contentions and Debates. All which, he who perfectly knoweth, is not
a Whit less the Servant of Sin than he was; but ten Times more so, in
that he is exalted, and proud of Iniquity, and so much the farther
from receiving, understanding, or learning the Truth, as it is in
its own naked Simplicity; because he is full, learned, rich, and
wise in his own Conceit: And so those that are most skilled in it,
wear out their Day, and spend their precious Time about the infinite
and innumerable Questions they have feigned and invented concerning
it. A certain learned Man called it, _A twofold Discipline, like the
Race of the Centaurs, partly proceeding from divine Sayings, partly
from philosophical Reasons_. [Sidenote: _Its needless Questions and
endless Janglings._] A thousand of their Questions they confess
themselves to be no-ways necessary to Salvation; and yet many more
of them they could never agree upon, but are, and still will be, in
endless Janglings about them. The Volumes that have been written
about it, a Man in his whole Age could scarce read, though he lived
to be very old; and when he has read them all, he has but wrought
himself a great deal more Vexation and Trouble of Spirit than he had
before. These certainly are the _Words multiplied without Knowledge;
by which Counsel hath been darkened_, Job xxxviii. 2. They make the
Scripture the Text of all this Mass; and it is concerning the Sense of
it that their voluminous Debates arise. But a Man of a good upright
Heart may learn more in half an Hour, and be more certain of it, by
waiting upon _God_, and his _Spirit in the Heart_, than by reading
a thousand of their Volumes; which by filling his Head with many
needless Imaginations, may well stagger his Faith, but never confirm
it: And indeed those that give themselves most to it, are most capable
to fall into Error, as appeareth by the Example of _Origen_, who, by
his Learning, was one of the first, that falling into this Way of
interpreting the Scriptures, wrote so many Volumes, and in them so many
Errors, as very much troubled the Church. [Sidenote: _Whereby _Arius_
fell into Error and Schism._] Also _Arius_, led by this Curiosity and
human Scrutiny, despising the Simplicity of the Gospel, fell into his
_Error_, which was the Cause of that horrible Heresy which so much
troubled the Church. Methinks the Simplicity, Plainness, and Brevity of
the Scriptures themselves, should be a sufficient Reproof for such a
Science; and the Apostles, being honest, plain, illiterate Men, may be
better understood by such Kind of Men now, than with all that Mass of
scholastick Stuff, which neither _Peter_, nor _Paul_, nor _John_, ever
thought of.

§. XXII. [Sidenote: _The _Apostasy_, and its dangerous _Consequence.]
But this Invention of Satan, wherewith he began the _Apostasy_, hath
been of dangerous Consequence; for thereby he at first spoiled the
Simplicity of Truth, by keeping up the _Heathenish Learning_, which
occasioned such Uncertainty, even among those called _Fathers_, and
such Debate, that there are few of them to be found, who, by Reason
of this Mixture, do not only frequently contradict one another,
but themselves also. [Sidenote: _Many of the _Fathers_ do not only
contradict each other, but themselves also, and why?_] And therefore
when the _Apostasy_ grew greater, he, as it were, buried the Truth with
this Veil of Darkness, wholly shutting out People from true Knowledge,
and making the Learned (so accounted) busy themselves with idle and
needless Questions; while the weighty Truths of God were neglected, and
went, as it were, into Disuse.

Now, though the grossest of these Abuses be swept away by
_Protestants_; yet the evil Root still remains, and is nourished and
upheld; and the Science kept up, as being deemed necessary for a
Minister: For, while the pure Learning of the _Spirit_ of _Truth_ is
despised and neglected, and made ineffectual, Man’s fallen earthly
Wisdom is upheld; and so in that he labours and works with the
_Scriptures_, being out of the _Life_ and _Spirit_ which those that
wrote them were in, by which only they are rightly understood, and
made Use of. [Sidenote: _Merchandizing with the Scriptures: What it
is. See also_ 2 Pet. 2. 3.] And so he that is to be a Minister, must
learn this _Art_ or _Trade_ of _Merchandizing_ with the _Scriptures_,
and be that which the Apostle would not be, to wit, a _Trader with
them_, 2 Cor. ii. 17. That he may acquire a Knack from a Verse of
Scripture, by adding his own barren Notions and Conceptions to it,
and his uncertain Conjectures, and what he hath stolen out of Books;
for which End he must have of Necessity a good many by him, and may
each _Sabbath-day_, as they call it, or oftener, make a Discourse for
an Hour long; [Sidenote: _And this they call the _Preaching_ of the
_Word.] and this is called the _Preaching of the Word_: Whereas the
Gift, Grace, and Spirit of God, to teach, open, and instruct, and to
preach a Word in Season, is neglected, and so Man’s Arts and _Parts_,
and _Knowledge_, and _Wisdom_, which is _from below_, are set up and
established in the Temple of God, yea, and above the little _Seed_;
which in Effect is _Antichrist_, working in the Mystery. [Sidenote:
_Thus _Antichrist_ is established above the Seed of the Kingdom._]
And so the Devil may be as good and able a Minister as the best of
them; [Sidenote: _How the Devil may be a _Minister_ of the Priests
Gospel._] for he has better Skill in _Languages_, and more _Logick_,
_Philosophy_ and _School Divinity_, than any of them; and knows the
Truth in the Notion better than they all, and can talk more eloquently
than all those Preachers. But what availeth all this; Is it not all but
as Death, as a painted Sepulchre, and dead Carcase, without the Power,
Life and Spirit of Christianity, which is the Marrow and Substance of
a _Christian Ministry_? And he that hath this, and can speak from it,
though he be a poor Shepherd, or a Fisherman, and ignorant of all that
Learning, and of all those Questions and Notions; yet speaking from the
Spirit, his Ministry will have more Influence towards the converting a
Sinner unto God, than all of them who are learned after the Flesh; as
in that Example of the old Man at the _Council_ of _Nice_ did appear.

§. XXIII. [Sidenote: _The _Power_ of _God_ by weak Instruments
restoring the _Simplicity_ of _Truth.] And if in any Age, since
the Apostles Days, God hath purposed to shew his Power by _weak
Instruments_, for the battering down of that _Carnal_ and _Heathenish
Wisdom_, and restoring again the _ancient Simplicity_ of _Truth_,
this is it. For in our Day, God hath raised up Witnesses for himself,
as he did Fishermen of old; many, yea, most of whom, are labouring
and mechanick Men, who, altogether without that Learning, have, by
the Power and Spirit of God, struck at the very Root and Ground of
_Babylon_; and in the Strength and Might of this Power, have gathered
Thousands, by reaching their Consciences, into the same Power and
Life, who, as to the outward Part, have been far more knowing than
they, yet not able to resist the Virtue that proceeded from them. Of
which I myself am a true Witness; [Sidenote: _The Powerful Ministry
of illiterate Men._] and can declare from certain Experience, because
my Heart hath been often greatly broken and tendered by that virtuous
Life that proceeded from the powerful Ministry of those illiterate Men:
So that by their very Countenance, as well as Words, I have felt the
Evil in me often chained down, and the Good reached to and raised. What
shall I then say to you, who are Lovers of Learning, and Admirers of
Knowledge? Was not I also a Lover and Admirer of it, who also sought
after it, according to my Age and Capacity? But it pleased God, in his
unutterable Love, early to withstand my vain Endeavours, while I was
yet but eighteen Years of Age; [Sidenote: _The _Time_ of the _Author_’s
first Convincement._] and made me seriously to consider (which I wish
also may befall others,) [93]That without _Holiness and Regeneration,
no Man can see God_; and that _the Fear of the Lord is the Beginning
of Wisdom, and to depart from Iniquity, a good Understanding_; and
how much _Knowledge puffeth up_, and leadeth away from that _inward
Quietness_, _Stillness_, and _Humility of Mind_, where the Lord
appears, and his Heavenly Wisdom is revealed. If ye consider these
Things, then will ye say with me, That all this Learning, Wisdom and
Knowledge, gathered in this fallen Nature, is but as _Dross_ and
_Dung_, in _Comparison of the Cross of Christ_; especially being
destitute of that Power, Life and Virtue, which I perceived these
excellent (though despised, because illiterate) Witnesses of God to be
filled with: And therefore seeing, that in and among them, I, with many
others, have found the _Heavenly Food_ that gives _Contentment_, let my
Soul seek after this _Learning_, and wait for it for ever.

[93] Job. 28. 28.

§. XXIV. [Sidenote: Quest. 3.] [Sidenote: _The Work of a Minister._]
Having thus spoken of the _Call_ and _Qualifications_ of a
_Gospel-Minister_, that which comes next to be considered, is, _What
his proper Work is, how, and by what Rule, he is to be ordered_? Our
Adversaries do all along go upon _Externals_, and therefore have
certain prescribed Rules and Methods, contrived according to their
human and earthly Wisdom: We, on the Contrary, walk still upon the
same _Foundation_, and lean always upon the immediate Assistance and
Influence of that _Holy Spirit_, which God hath given his _Children_,
to teach them all Things, and lead them in all Things: [Sidenote: _The
Holy Spirit, a Spirit of Order, and not of Confusion._] Which _Spirit_,
being the _Spirit of Order_, and not of _Confusion_, leads us, and as
many as follow it, into such a _comely_ and _decent Order_ as becometh
the Church of God. But our Adversaries, having shut themselves out
from this immediate Counsel and Influence of the Spirit, have run
themselves into many Confusions and Disorders, seeking to establish
an Order in this Matter. [Sidenote: _Popish Orders and Offices_,
&c.] For some will have _First_ a _chief Bishop_, or _Pope_, to rule
and be a Prince over all; and under him, by Degrees, _Cardinals_,
_Patriarchs_, _Archbishops_, _Priests_, _Deacons_, _Sub-deacons_; and
besides these, _Acoluthi_, _Tonsorati_, _Ostiarii_, &c. And in their
_Theology_ (as they call it) _Professors_, _Bachelors_, _Doctors_, &c.
And others would have every Nation _independent_ of another, having
its own _Metropolitan_ or _Patriarch_; and the rest in Order subject
to him, as before. Others again are against all _Precedency_ among
_Pastors_, and constitute their _Subordination_ not of Persons, but of
Powers: As first the _Consistory_, or _Session_; then the _Class_, or
_Presbytery_; then the _Provincial_; and then the _National Synod_ or
_Assembly_. Thus they _tear one another_, and contend among themselves
concerning the Ordering, Distinguishing, and making their several
Orders and Offices; [Sidenote: _Wars and Bloodshed about _Church
Government.] concerning which there hath been no less Contest, not
only by Way of verbal Dispute, but even by Fighting, Tumults, Wars,
Devastations, and Bloodshed, than about the Conquering, Overturning,
and Establishing of Kingdoms. And the _Histories_ of late Times are as
full of the various _Tragedies_, acted on Account of this _Spiritual_
and _Ecclesiastical Monarchy_ and _Commonwealth_, as the _Histories_
of old Times are of the Wars and Contests that fell out both in the
_Assyrian_, _Persian_, _Greek_ and _Roman_ Empires: These last upon
this Account, though among those that are called _Christians_, have
been no less bloody and cruel than the former among _Heathens_,
concerning their outward Empires and Governments. [Sidenote: _The
Ground and Cause thereof_.] Now all this, both among _Papists_ and
_Protestants_, proceedeth, in that they seek in Imitation to uphold
a Form and Shadow of Things, though they want the Power, Virtue and
Substance; while for many of their Orders and Forms they have not
so much as the Name in the Scripture. But in Opposition to all this
Mass of Formality, and Heap of Orders, Rules and Governments, we say,
_The Substance is chiefly to be sought after, and the Power, Virtue
and Spirit, is to be known and waited for, which is one_ in all the
different Names and Offices the Scripture makes Use of; as appears by
1 _Cor._ xii. 4. (often before-mentioned) _There are Diversities of
Gifts, but the same Spirit_. And after the Apostle, throughout the
whole Chapter, hath shewn how one and the self-same Spirit worketh in
and quickeneth each Member; then in _Ver._ 28. he sheweth how thereby
God hath set in the Church, First _Apostles_, Secondly _Prophets_,
_Teachers_, &c. And likewise to the same Purpose, _Ephes._ iv. 11;
he sheweth, how by these Gifts _he hath given some Apostles_, _some
Prophets_, _some Evangelists_, _some Pastors_, _some Teachers_, &c.
Now it never was Christ’s Purpose, nor the Apostles, that _Christians_
should, without this Spirit and Heavenly Gift, set up a Shadow and
Form of these Orders, and so make several Ranks and Degrees, to
establish a _carnal Ministry_ of Men’s making, without the Life, Power
and Spirit of Christ: [Sidenote: _The Work of Antichrist and Mystery
of Iniquity._] This is that _Work_ of _Antichrist_, and _Mystery_ of
_Iniquity_, that hath got up in the dark Night of Apostasy. But in a
true _Church of Christ_, gathered together by God, not only into the
Belief of the _Principles of Truth_, but also into the Power, Life
and Spirit of _Christ_, the Spirit of God is the Orderer, Ruler and
Governor; as in each Particular, so in the General. [Sidenote: _Such as
the Spirit sets apart to the _Ministry_, their Brethren hear them._]
And when they assemble together to wait upon God, and to worship and
adore him; then such as the Spirit sets apart for the _Ministry_, by
its divine Power and Influence opening their Mouths, and giving them
to exhort, reprove, and instruct with Virtue and Power; these are thus
ordained of God and admitted into the _Ministry_, and their Brethren
cannot but hear them, receive them, and also _honour them for their
Work’s Sake_. [Sidenote: _The Clergy and Laicks._] And so this is not
_monopolized_ by a certain Kind of Men, as the _Clergy_ (who are to
that Purpose educated and brought up as other carnal _Artists_) and
the rest to be despised as _Laicks_; but it is left to the _free Gift
of God_ to choose any whom he seeth meet thereunto, whether Rich or
Poor, Servant or Master, Young or Old, yea, Male or Female. [Sidenote:
_Women may preach._] And such as have this Call, verify the Gospel,
by _preaching not in Speech only, but also in Power, and in the Holy
Ghost, and in much Fulness_, 1 Thess. i. 5. and cannot but be received
and heard by the _Sheep of Christ_.

§. XXV. [Sidenote: Object.] But if it be objected here, _That I seem
hereby to make no Distinction at all betwixt Ministers and others;
which is contrary to the Apostle’s Saying_, 1 Cor. xii. 29. _Are all
Apostles? Are all Prophets? Are all Teachers?_ &c. From thence they
insinuate, _That I also contradict his Comparison in that Chapter, of
the Church of Christ with a human Body_; as where he saith, Ver. 17.
_If the whole Body were an Eye, where were the Hearing? If the Whole
were Hearing, where were the Smelling?_ &c. _Also the Apostle not only
distinguisheth the Ministers of the Church in general from the rest of
the Members, but also from themselves; as naming them distinctly and
separately, Apostles, Prophets, Evangelists, Pastors, Teachers_, &c.

[Sidenote: _Answ. 1. Diversity of Names makes no distinct Offices; but
which may coincide, or be together in one Person._] As to the last
Part of this Objection, to which I shall first answer; it is apparent,
that this Diversity of Names is not to distinguish separate Offices,
but to denote the different and various Operations of the Spirit; a
Manner of Speech frequent with the Apostle _Paul_, wherein he sometimes
expatiates to the Illustrating of the Glory and Praise of God’s Grace:
As in Particular, _Rom._ xii. 6. _Having then Gifts differing according
to the Grace that is given us, whether Prophecy, let us prophesy
according to the Proportion of Faith; or Ministry, let us wait on our
Ministring; or he that teacheth, on Teaching; or he that exhorteth,
on Exhortation._ Now none will say from all this, that these are
_distinct Offices_, or do not, or may not coincide in one Person, as
may all those other Things mentioned by him in the subsequent Verses,
viz. _Of Loving_, _being kindly Affectionated_, _Fervency of Spirit_,
_Hospitality_, _Diligence_, _Blessing_, _Rejoicing_, &c. which he yet
numbers forth as different Gifts of the Spirit, and according to this
Objection might be placed as distinct and separate Offices, which were
most absurd.

_Secondly_, In these very Places mentioned it is clear that it is no
real Distinction of separate Offices; because all acknowledge, that
_Pastors_ and _Teachers_, (which the Apostle there no less separateth
and distinguisheth, than _Pastors_ and _Prophets_, or _Apostles_) are
one and the same, and coincide in the same _Office_ and _Person_;
and therefore may be said so of the rest. [Sidenote: Prophecy _and_
Prophesying_, its twofold Signification._] For [_Prophecy_] as it
signifies the _Foretelling of Things to come_, is indeed a distinct
Gift, but no distinct Office; and therefore our Adversaries do not
place it among their several Orders: Neither will they deny, but that
it both may be and hath been given of God to some, that not only have
been _Pastors_ and _Teachers_, and that there it hath coincided in one
Person with these other Offices, but also to some of the _Laicks_: And
so it hath been found, according to their own Confession, without the
Limits of their _Clergy_. [Sidenote: _To_ prophesy, _a Privilege of_
Teachers, _and of all the_ Saints.] _Prophecy_ in the other Sense, to
wit, as it signifies a _Speaking from the Spirit of Truth_, is not
only peculiar to _Pastors_ and _Teachers_, who ought so to _prophesy_;
but even a common Privilege to the _Saints_. For though to instruct,
teach and exhort, be proper to such as are more particularly called to
the Work of the _Ministry_; yet it is not so proper to them, as not
to be (when the Saints are met together, as any of them are moved by
the Spirit) common to others: For some Acts belong to all in such a
Relation; but not only to those within that Relation: _Competunt omni,
sed non soli_. Thus to _see_ and _hear_ are proper Acts of a Man;
seeing it may be properly predicated of him, that he _heareth_ and
_seeth_: Yet are they common to other Creatures also. So to _prophesy_
in this Sense, is indeed proper to _Ministers_ and _Teachers_; yet not
so, but that it is common and lawful to other _Saints_, when moved
thereunto, though it be not proper to them by Way of Relation: Because,
notwithstanding that Motion, they are not particularly called to the
Work of the _Ministry_, as appears by 1 _Cor._ xiv. where the Apostle
at large declaring the Order and ordinary Method of the Church, saith,
Ver. 30, 31. _But if_ any Thing _be revealed to another that sitteth
by, let the first hold his Peace; for ye may all prophesy one by one,
that all may learn, and all be comforted_: Which sheweth that none is
here excluded. But yet that there is a _Subordination_, according to
the various Measures of the Gift received, the next Verse sheweth: _And
the Spirits of the Prophets are subject to the Prophets: For God is not
the Author of Confusion, but of Peace_. Now that _Prophesying_, in this
Sense, may be _common to all Saints_, appears by Ver. 39. of the same
Chapter, where speaking to [_all_] in general, he saith, _Wherefore,
Brethren, covet to prophesy_; and Ver. 1. he exhorts them, saying,
_Desire spiritual Gifts, but rather that ye may prophesy_.

[Sidenote: _Who are _Evangelists_, and whether any may term themselves
so now-a-day._] _Secondly_, As to _Evangelists_ the same may be said;
for whoever preacheth the _Gospel_ is really an _Evangelist_, and
so consequently every true _Minister_ of the _Gospel_ is one; else
what proper Office can they assign to it, unless they should be so
foolish as to affirm that none were _Evangelists_ but _Matthew_,
_Mark_, _Luke_, and _John_, who wrote the Account of Christ’s Life
and Sufferings? And then it were neither a particular Office, seeing
_John_ and _Matthew_ were Apostles, _Mark_ and _Luke_ Pastors and
Teachers, so that there they coincided in one. And indeed it is absurd
to think, that upon that particular Account the Apostle used the Word
[_Evangelist_.] _Calvin_ acknowledgeth, that _such as preach the
Gospel in Purity, after some Time of Apostasy, may be truly called_
Evangelists, and therefore saith, that _There were Apostles in his
Time_; and hence the _Protestants_, at their first coming forth, termed
themselves _Evangelici_, or _Evangelicks_.

[Sidenote: _Who is an _Apostle.] _Lastly_, An _Apostle_, if we look
to the Etymology of the Word, signifies _one that is sent_; and in
Respect _every true Minister is sent of God_, in so far he is an
_Apostle_; though the _Twelve_, because of their being _specially sent
of Christ_, were therefore called _Apostles_ [Greek: kat' exochên: κατ
εξοχην], or _per eminentiam_, i. e. by Way of Excellency. [Sidenote:
_They were not limited to such a Number._] And yet that there was
no Limitation to such a Number, as some foolishly imagine, appears,
because after that Number was filled up, the Apostle _Paul_ was
afterwards so called; therefore we judge that these are no distinct
separate Offices, but only Names used upon Occasion to express the
more eminent Arising and Shining forth of _God’s Grace_. As if any
_Minister_ of _Christ_ should now proselyte and turn a whole Nation to
the _Christian Faith_, though he had no distinct Office, yet I doubt
not but both _Papists_ and _Protestants_ would judge it tolerable to
call such an one an _Apostle_, or an _Evangelist_; [Sidenote: _Whether
any Man be called an _Apostle_ at this Day_.] for on this Account the
_Jesuits_ call some of their Sect _Apostles_ of _India_ and of _Japan_;
and _Calvin_ testifies that there were _Apostles_ and _Evangelists_
in his Time, in respect to the _Reformation_; [Sidenote: _Upon what
Account _John Knox_ was called the _Apostle_ of _Scotland.] upon
which Account also we have known _John Knox_ often called the _Apostle_
of _Scotland_. So that we conclude that _Ministers_, _Pastors_, or
_Teachers_ do comprehend _all_, and that the Office is but _one_, and
therefore in that Respect we judge there ought to be no Precedency
among them: To prove which I shall not here insist, seeing it is
shewn largely, and treated of by such as have denied the _Diocesan
Episcopacy_, as they call it.

§. XXVI. [Sidenote: _Answ. 2._] As to the first Part of the
_Objection_, viz. _That I seem to make no Distinction betwixt the
Minister and People_, I answer, [Sidenote: _Liberty to _prophesy_ all
have, by the Spirit._] If it be understood of a Liberty to _speak_
or _prophesy_ by the _Spirit_, I say all may do that, when moved
thereunto, as above is shewn; but we do believe and affirm that some
are more particularly called to the Work of the _Ministry_, and
therefore are fitted of the Lord for that Purpose; whose Work is more
constantly and particularly to instruct, exhort, admonish, oversee,
and watch over their Brethren; and that as there is something more
incumbent upon them in that Respect than upon every common Believer,
so also, as in that Relation, there is due to them from the Flock such
Obedience and Subjection as is mentioned in these Testimonies of the
Scripture, _Heb._ xiii. 17. 1 _Thess._ v. 12, 13. 1 _Tim._ v. 17. 1
_Pet._ v. 5. Also besides these who are thus particularly called to the
_Ministry_, and constant Labour in the Word and Doctrine, there are
also the _Elders_, who though they be not moved to a frequent Testimony
by Way of Declaration in Words, [Sidenote: _The Elders take Care for
the _Widows_, the _Poor_ and _Fatherless.] yet as such are grown up
in the Experience of the blessed Work of Truth in their Hearts, they
watch over and privately admonish the Young, take Care for the Widows,
the Poor, and Fatherless, and look that nothing be wanting, but that
Peace, Love, Unity, Concord, and Soundness be preserved in the _Church
of Christ_; and this answers to the _Deacons_ mentioned _Acts_ vi.

[Sidenote: _The Distinction of _Clergy_ and _Laity_ not to be found in
Scripture._] That which we oppose, is the Distinction of _Laity_ and
_Clergy_, which in the Scripture is not to be found, whereby none are
admitted unto the Work of the _Ministry_ but such as are educated at
_Schools_ on Purpose, and instructed in _Logick_ and _Philosophy_, &c.
and so are at their Apprenticeship to learn the _Art_ and _Trade_ of
_Preaching_, even as a Man learns any other _Art_, whereby all other
honest _mechanick Men_, who have not got this _Heathenish Art_, are
excluded from having this Privilege. And so he that is a _Scholar_ thus
bred up must not have any honest Trade whereby to get him a Livelihood,
if he once intend for the _Ministry_, but he must see to get him a
Place, and then he hath his _set Hire_ for a _Livelihood_ to him.
[Sidenote: _Their Garb._] He must also be distinguished from the rest
by the Colour of his Clothes; for he must only wear _Black_, and must
be a _Master of Arts_: But more of this hereafter.

§. XXVII. As this Manner of separating Men for the _Ministry_ is
nothing like the Church in the Apostles Days, so great Evils have
and do follow upon it. For first, Parents seeing both the Honour and
Profit that attends the _Clergy_, do allot their Children sometimes
from their Infancy to it, and so breed them up on Purpose. And others,
come to Age, upon the same Account betake them to the same Trade, and
having these natural and acquired Parts that are judged the necessary
Qualifications of a _Minister_, are thereby admitted, and so are bred
up in Idleness and Pleasure, thinking it a Disgrace for them to
work with their Hands; [Sidenote: _The Clergy’s Study out of Books;
the Gift of God neglected._] and so just study a little out of their
Books, to make a Discourse once or twice a Week during the running of
an Hour-glass; whereas the Gift, Grace, and Spirit of God, to call
and qualify for the _Ministry_, is neglected and overlooked. And many
_covetous_, _corrupt_, _earthly_, _carnal_ Men, having a mere Shew and
Form, but Strangers to, and utterly ignorant of, the inward Work of
Grace upon their Hearts, are brought in and intrude themselves, and
so through them Death, Barrenness, and Darkness, and by Consequence
Superstition, Error, and Idolatry have entered and leavened the
_Church_. And they that will narrowly observe, shall find that it was
thus the _Apostasy_ came to take Place; of the Truth of which I could
give many Examples, which for Brevity’s Sake I omit. Thus the Office,
Reverence, and Respect due to it were annexed to the mere Name, so that
when once a Man was ordained a _Bishop_ or a _Priest_, he was heard and
believed, though he had nothing of the Spirit, Power, and Life that the
true _Apostles_ and _Ministers_ were in. And thus in a short Time the
Succession came to be of the Name and Title, and the Office was thereto
annexed; and not of the Nature, Virtue, and Life; which in Effect made
them to cease to be the _Ministry_ and _Ministers_ of _Christ_, but
only a Shadow and vain Image of it; which also decaying, was in some
Ages so metamorphosed, that not only the Substance was lost, but the
very Form wholly vitiated, altered, and marred; [Sidenote: _The marred
Church compared to _Theseus_’s pieced Boat._] so that it may be far
better said of the pretended _Christian Church_, as was disputed of
_Theseus_’s Boat (which by the piecing of many new Pieces of Timber
was wholly altered) _whether indeed it were the same or another_? But
in Case that the first had been of _Oak_, and the Pieces last put in
but of rotten _Fir_, and that also the Form had been so far changed
as to be nothing like the first, I think it would have suffered no
Dispute, but might have easily been concluded to be quite another,
retaining nothing but the Name, and that also unjustly. [Sidenote:
_The Abuse following the Distinction of _Laity_ and _Clergy.]
_Secondly_, From this Distinction of _Laity_ and _Clergy_ this Abuse
also follows, that _good_, _honest_, _mechanick Men_, and others who
have not learned the Art and Trade of Preaching, and so are not
licentiated according to these Rules they prescribe unto themselves;
such, I say, being possessed with a false Opinion that it is not lawful
for them to meddle with the _Ministry_, nor that they are any Ways fit
for it, because of the Defect of that Literature, do thereby neglect
the Gift in themselves, and quench many Times the _pure Breathings
of the Spirit of God_ in their Hearts; which, if given Way to, might
prove much more for the Edification of the Church than many of the
_conned Sermons_ of the Learned. And so by this Means the Apostle’s
Command and Advice is slighted, who exhorteth, 1 _Thess._ v. 19, 20.
_not to quench the Spirit, nor despise Prophesyings_. And all this is
done by Men pretending to be _Christians_, who glory that the first
_Preachers_ and _Propagators_ of their _Religion_ were such Kind of
plain mechanick Men, and illiterate. [Sidenote: _Both _Protestants_ and
_Papists_ exclude mechanick Men from preaching, who greatly contributed
to the Reformation._] And even _Protestants_ do no less than _Papists_
exclude such Kind of Men from being _Ministers_ among them, and thus
limit the Spirit and Gift of God; though their _Fathers_, in Opposition
to _Papists_, asserted the Contrary; and also their own _Histories_
declare how that Kind of illiterate Men did, without Learning, by the
Spirit of God, greatly contribute in divers Places to the _Reformation_.

By this it may appear, that as in _Calling_ and _Qualifying_, so in
_Preaching_ and _Praying_, and the other particular Steps of the
_Ministry_, every true _Minister_ is to know the Spirit of God by its
Virtue and Life to accompany and assist him; but because this relates
to _Worship_, I shall speak of it more largely in the next Proposition,
which is concerning _Worship_.

The last Thing to be considered and inquired into is, concerning the
_Maintenance of a Gospel Minister_; but before I proceed, I judge it
fit to speak something briefly concerning the _Preaching of Women_, and
to declare what we hold in that Matter.

[Sidenote: _Women’s publick Preaching and Praying asserted._] Seeing
_Male and Female are one in Christ Jesus_, and that he gives his
Spirit no less to _one_ than to the _other_, when God moveth by his
Spirit _in a Woman_, we judge it no Ways unlawful for her to preach
in the Assemblies of God’s People. Neither think we that of _Paul_,
1 Cor. xiv. 34. to reprove the _inconsiderate_ and _talkative Women_
among the _Corinthians_, who troubled the Church of Christ with their
_unprofitable Questions_, or that, 1 _Tim._ ii. 11, 12. that _Women
ought to learn in Silence, not usurping Authority over the Man_, any
Ways repugnant to this Doctrine; because it is clear that _Women_
have _prophesied_ and _preached_ in the _Church_, else had that
Saying of _Joel_ been ill applied by _Peter_, Acts ii. 17. And seeing
_Paul_ himself, in the same _Epistle_ to the _Corinthians_, giveth
Rules how Women should behave themselves in their publick _Preaching_
and _Praying_, it would be a manifest Contradiction if that other
Place were taken in a larger Sense. And the same _Paul_ speaks of a
_Woman_ that laboured with him in the _Work of the Gospel_: And it is
written that [94]_Philip_ had _four Daughters_ that prophesied. And
_Lastly_, It hath been observed, that God hath _effectually_ in this
Day _converted many Souls_ by the _Ministry of Women_; and by them
also frequently comforted the Souls of his Children; which manifest
Experience puts the Thing beyond all Controversy. [Sidenote: Quest. 4.]
[Sidenote: _Ministers Maintenance._] But now I shall proceed to speak
of the _Maintenance of Ministers_.

[94] Acts 21. 9.

§. XXVIII. [Sidenote: _The Ministers _Food_ and their _Maintenance_
stated._] We freely acknowledge, as the _Proposition_ holds forth,
that there is an Obligation upon such to whom God sends, or among whom
he raiseth up a _Minister_, that, if Need be, they minister to his
Necessities. _Secondly_, That it is lawful for him to receive what is
necessary and convenient. To prove this I need not insist, for our
Adversaries will readily grant it to us; for the Thing we affirm is,
that this is all that these Scripture Testimonies relating to this
Thing do grant, _Gal._ vi. 6. 1 _Cor._ ix. 11, 12, 13, 14. 1 _Tim._
v. 16. That which we then oppose in this Matter is, _First_, That
it should be constrained and limited. _Secondly_, That it should be
superfluous, chargeable, and sumptuous. And _Thirdly_, The manifest
Abuse thereof, of which I shall also briefly treat.

[Sidenote: I. _Against constrained _Maintenance.] As to the _First_,
our Adversaries are forced to recur to the Example of the _Law_; a
Refuge they use in defending most of their Errors and Superstitions,
which are contrary to the Nature and Purity of the _Gospel_.

[Sidenote: Object.] They say, _God appointed the _Levites_ the Tithes,
therefore they belong also to such as minister in holy Things under the

[Sidenote: _Answ._] I answer, All that can be gathered from this is,
that as the _Priests_ had _a_ Maintenance allowed them under the _Law_,
so also the _Ministers_ and _Preachers_ under the _Gospel_, which is
not denied; but the Comparison will not hold that they should have
the _very same_; since, _First_, There is no express _Gospel Command_
for it, neither by Christ nor his Apostles. [Sidenote: Tithes _were
appointed for the _Levites_, not for_ Gospel Preachers.] _Secondly_,
The Parity doth no Ways hold betwixt the _Levites_ under the _Law_, and
the _Preachers_ under the _Gospel_; because the _Levites_ were one of
the Tribes of _Israel_, and so had a Right to a Part of the Inheritance
of the Land as well as the rest of their Brethren; and having none, had
this allotted to them in Lieu of it. Next, The tenth of the _Tithes_
was only allowed to the _Priests_ that served at the Altar, the rest
being for the _Levites_, and also to be put up in Store-houses,
for entertaining of Widows and Strangers. But these _Preachers_,
notwithstanding they inherit what they have by their Parents, as well
as other Men, yet claim the whole _Tithes_, allowing nothing either to
Widow or Stranger. But as to the _Tithes_ I shall not insist, because
divers others have clearly and learnedly treated of them apart, and
also divers _Protestants_ do confess them not to be _jure divino_; and
the Parity as to the _Quota_ doth not hold, but only in general as to
the _Obligation_ of a _Maintenance_; which _Maintenance_, though the
Hearers be obliged to give, and fail of their Duty if they do not,
yet that it ought neither to be stinted, nor yet forced, I prove;
[Sidenote: Reas. 1. _The _Gospel freely to be preached_, without so
much a Year._] Because Christ, when he sent forth his Apostles, said,
_Freely ye have received, freely give_, Mat. x. 8. and yet they had
Liberty to receive Meat and Drink from such as offered them, to supply
their Need. Which shews that they were not to seek or require any Thing
by Force, or to stint, or make a Bargain beforehand, as the _Preachers_
as well among _Papists_ as _Protestants_ do in these Days, who will not
preach to any until they be first sure of so much a Year; but on the
contrary, these were to do their Duty, and freely to communicate, as
the Lord should order them, what they had received, without seeking or
expecting a Reward.

[Sidenote: Nic. Arnoldus _his Answer to_ Freely ye have received_,
&c._] The Answer given to this by _Nicolaus Arnoldus_, Exercit.
Theolog. Sect. 42, 43. is not to be forgotten, but indeed to be kept
upon Record for a perpetual Remembrance of him and his Brethren; for
he frankly answers after this Manner, _We have not freely received,
and therefore are not bound to give freely_. The Answer I confess
is ingenuous and good; for if those that receive freely are to give
freely, it would seem to follow by the Rule of _Contraries_, that those
that receive not freely ought not to give freely, and I shall grant
it; only they must grant me, that they preach not by and according to
the _Gift and Grace of God_ received, nor can they be _good Stewards
of the manifold Grace of God_, as every true _Minister_ ought to be;
[Sidenote: Simon Magus.] or else they have gotten this _Gift_ or
_Grace_ by Money, as _Simon Magus_ would have been compassing it, since
they think themselves not bound to give it without Money again. But
to be plain, I believe he intended not that it was from the _Gift_ or
_Grace of God_ they were to preach, but from their _acquired Arts_
and _Studies_, which have cost them much Labour and also some Money
at the _University_; and therefore, as he that puts his Stock into
the publick Bank expects Interest again, so these _Scholars_, having
spent some Money in learning the Art of Preaching, think they may
boldly say _they have it not freely_; for it hath cost them both Money
and Pains, and therefore they expect both Money and Ease again. And
therefore, as _Arnoldus_ gets Money for teaching his young Students
the _Art_ and _Trade_ of _Preaching_, so he intends they should be
repaid before they give it again to others. [Sidenote: _All Things are
set to Sale at _Rome_. To _Franequer_ applied._] It was of old said,
_Omnia venalia Romæ_, i. e. _All Things are set to Sale at_ Rome; but
now the same Proverb may be applied to _Franequer_. And therefore
_Arnoldus’s Students_, when they go about to preach, may safely seek
and require hereby, telling the Hearers their Master’s Maxim, _Nos
gratis non accepimus, ergo neque gratis dare tenemur_. But then they
may answer again, That they find them and their Master to be none of
his _Ministers_, who when he sent forth his Disciples, gave them this
Command, _Freely ye have received, freely give_, and therefore we will
have none of your Teaching, because we perceive you to be of the Number
of those [95]_that look for their Gain from their Quarter_.

[95] Isa. 56. 11.

§. XXIX. [Sidenote: Reas. 2.] _Secondly_, The Scripture Testimonies
that urge this are in the same Nature of those that press _Charity_
and _Liberality_ towards the Poor, [Sidenote: _Mere voluntary Deeds
no Man can stint them._] and command _Hospitality_, &c. but these are
not nor can be stinted to a certain Quantity, because they are Deeds
merely voluntary, where the Obedience to the Command lieth in the good
Will of the Giver, and not in the Matter of the Thing given, as Christ
sheweth in the Example of the _Widow’s Mite_. So that though there
be an Obligation upon _Christians_ to minister of outward Things to
their Ministers, yet there can be no Definition of the Quantity but by
the Giver’s own Consent, and a little from one may more truly fulfil
the Obligation than a great deal from another. And therefore as _Acts
of Charity_ and _Hospitality_ can neither be limited nor forced, so
neither can this.

[Sidenote: Object.] If it be objected, _That Ministers may and ought to
exhort, persuade, yea and earnestly press _Christians_, if they find
them defective therein, to Acts of Charity and Hospitality, and so may
they do also to the giving of Maintenance_.

[Sidenote: _Answ._] I answer, All this saith nothing for a _stinted_
and _forced Maintenance_, for which there cannot so much as the Shew
of one solid Argument be brought from Scripture. I confess _Ministers_
may use Exhortation in this as much as in any other Case, even as the
Apostle did to the _Corinthians_, shewing them their Duty; [Sidenote:
Paul’s _Labour was, that the _Gospel_ might be without Charge._] but it
were fit for _Ministers_ that so do (that their Testimony might have
the more Weight, and be the freer of all Suspicion of Covetousness
and Self-interest) that they might be able to say truly in the Sight
of God that which the same Apostle subjoins upon the same Occasion,
1 _Cor._ ix. 15, 16, 17, 18. _But I have used none of these Things;
neither have I written these Things, that it should be so done unto
me: For it were better for me to die, than that any Man should make my
Glorying void. For though I preach the Gospel, I have nothing to glory
of; for Necessity is laid upon me, yea Woe is unto me if I preach not
the Gospel. For if I do this Thing willingly, I have a Reward; but if
against my Will, a Dispensation of the Gospel is committed unto me.
What is my Reward then? Verily that when I preach the Gospel, I may
make the Gospel of Christ without Charge, that I abuse not my Power in
the Gospel._

[Sidenote: Reas. 3.] _Thirdly_, As there is neither Precept nor Example
for this forced and stinted Maintenance in the Scripture, so the
Apostle, in his solemn Farewel to the _Pastors_ and _Elders_ of the
Church of _Ephesus_, guards them against it, _Acts_ xx. 33, 34, 35.
But if the Thing had been either lawful or practised, he would rather
have exhorted them to be content with their stinted Hire, and not to
covet more; whereas he sheweth them, first, by his own Example, that
they were not to [Sidenote: Paul _coveted no Body’s_ Silver _or_ Gold.]
_covet or expect any Man’s Silver or Gold_; secondly, that they ought
to _work with their Hands_ for an honest Livelihood, as he had done;
and lastly, he exhorts them so to do from the Words of Christ, _because
it is a more blessed Thing to give than to receive_; shewing that it is
so far from a Thing that a true Minister ought to aim at, or expect,
that it is rather a Burden to a true Minister, and Cross to him, to be
reduced to the Necessity of wanting it.

§. XXX. [Sidenote: Reas. 4.] _Fourthly_, If a forced and stinted
Maintenance were to be supposed, it would make the Ministers of Christ
just one with those [Sidenote: _No _Hireling_ fitting the Gospel
of _Christ.] Hirelings whom the Prophets cried out against. For
certainly if a Man make a Bargain to preach to People for so much a
Year, so as to refuse to preach unless he have it, and seek to force
the People to give it by Violence, it cannot be denied that such a one
preacheth for Hire, and so _looks for his Gain from his Quarter_, yea
and [96]_prepares War against such as put not into his Mouth_; but this
is the particular special _Mark_ of a false Prophet and an Hireling,
and therefore can no Ways belong to a true Minister of Christ.

[96] Mic. 3. 5.

[Sidenote: _Moderate _Protestants_ and _Papists_ exclaim against
the Excess of the _Clergy_’s Revenues._] Next, that a superfluous
Maintenance, that is, more than in Reason is needful, ought not to be
received by Christian Ministers, will not need much Proof, seeing
the more Moderate and Sober, both among _Papists_ and _Protestants_,
readily confess it, who with one Voice exclaim against the _excessive
Revenues_ of the _Clergy_; and that it may not want a Proof from
Scripture, what can be more plain than that of the Apostle to
_Timothy_? 1 _Tim._ vi. 7, 8, 9, 10. where he both shews wherewith we
ought to be content, and also the Hazard of such as look after more;
and indeed, since that very Obligation of giving Maintenance to a
Minister is founded upon their Need, and such as have Opportunity to
work are commended rather in not receiving than in receiving, it can no
Ways be supposed lawful for them to receive more than is sufficient.
And indeed, were they truly pious and right, though necessitous, they
would rather incline to take too little, than be gaping after too much.

§. XXXI. [Sidenote: II.] [Sidenote: _The Excess of the _Priests_ and
_Bishops_ Revenues._] Now that there is great Excess and Abuse hereof
among Christians, the vast Revenues which the Bishops and Priests have,
both _Papists_ and _Protestants_, do declare; since I judge it may be
said without any Hyperbole, that some particular Persons have more
paid them yearly than Christ and his Apostles made use of in their
whole Life-time, who yet wanted not what was needful as to the outward
Man, and no Doubt deserved it far better than those that enjoy that
Fulness. But it is manifest these _Bishops _and_ Priests love their fat
_Benefices_, and the Pleasure and Honour that attends them, so well,
that they purpose neither to follow Christ nor his Apostles Example or
Advice in this Matter_.

[Sidenote: Object.] But it is usually objected, That _Christians are
become so hard-hearted, and generally so little heed Spiritual Things,
that if Ministers had not a settled and stinted Maintenance secured
them by Law, they and their Families might starve for Want of Bread_.

[Sidenote: _Answ._] I answer, This Objection might have some Weight
as to a Carnal Ministry, made up of natural Men, who have no Life,
Power, nor Virtue with them, and so may insinuate some Need of such a
Maintenance for such a Ministry; [Sidenote: _They wanted nothing whom
God sent; they laboured with their Hands._] but it saith nothing as
to such as are called and sent of God, _who sends no Man a Wayfaring
upon his own Charges_; and so go forth in the Authority and Power of
God, to turn People from _Darkness_ to _Light_; for such can trust to
him that sendeth them, and do believe that he will provide for them,
knowing that he requireth nothing of any but what he giveth Power to
perform; and so when they return, if he enquire, can say _they wanted
nothing_. And such also when they stay in a Place, being immediately
furnished by God, and not needing to borrow and steal what they preach
from Books, and take up their Time that Way, fall a working at their
lawful Employments, and labour with their Hands, as _Paul_ did when
he gathered the Church at _Corinth_. And indeed if this Objection had
any Weight, the Apostles and Primitive Pastors should never have gone
forth to convert the Nations, for fear of Want. Doth not the Doctrine
of Christ teach us to venture all, and part with all, to serve God? Can
they then be accounted Ministers of Christ who are afraid to preach him
lest they get not Money for it, or will not do it until they be sure of
their Payment? What serves the Ministry for but to perfect the Saints,
and so to convert them from that Hard-heartedness?

[Sidenote: Object.] But thou wilt say, _I have laboured and preached to
them, and they are hard-hearted still, and will not give me any Thing_:

[Sidenote: _Answ._] Then surely thou hast either not been sent to them
of God, and so thy Ministry and Preaching hath not been among them in
the Power, Virtue, and Life of Christ, and so thou deservest nothing;
or else they have rejected thy Testimony, and so are not worthy, and
from such thou oughtest not to expect, yea nor yet receive any Thing,
if they would give thee, but thou oughtest to _shake off the Dust from
thy Feet_, and leave them. [Sidenote: Mat. 10. 14. _If they reject the
Testimony, shake the Dust from off thy Feet._] And how frivolous this
Objection is, appears, in that in the darkest and most superstitious
Times the _Priests Revenues_ increased most, and they were most richly
rewarded, though they deserved least. So that he that is truly sent of
God, as he needs not, so neither will he, be afraid of Want, so long as
he serves so good a Master; neither will he ever forbear to do his Work
for that Cause. And indeed such as make this Objection shew truly that
they _serve not the Lord Christ_, but their own Belly, and that makes
them so anxious for want of Food to it.

§. XXXII. [Sidenote: II.] [Sidenote: _The many _Abuses_ Priests
_Maintenance_ brings._] But lastly, As to the _Abuses_ of this Kind
of Maintenance, indeed he that would go through them all, though he
did it passingly, might make of it alone a huge Volume, they are so
great and numerous. For this Abuse, as others, crept in with the
_Apostasy_, there being nothing of this in the Primitive Times: Then
the Ministers claimed no _Tithes_, neither sought they a stinted or
forced Maintenance; but such as wanted had their Necessity supplied by
the Church, and others wrought with their Hands. But the Persecutions
being over, and the Emperors and Princes coming under the Name of
_Christians_, the Zeal of those great Men was quickly abused by the
_Covetousness_ of the _Clergy_, who soon learned to change their
Cottages with the Palaces of Princes, and rested not until by Degrees
some of them came to be Princes themselves, nothing inferior to them
in Splendor, Luxury, and Magnificence; a Method of living that honest
_Peter_ and _John_ the _Fisherman_, and _Paul_ the _Tent-maker_ never
coveted; and perhaps as little imagined that Men pretending to be
their Successors should have arrived to these Things. And so soon as
the Bishops were thus seated and constituted, forgetting the Life and
Work of a Christian, they went usually by the Ears together about
the Precedency and Revenues, each coveting the chiefest and fattest
Benefice. [Sidenote: _The _Protestants_ having forsaken the Pope,
yet would not forsake the rich Popish Revenues._] It is also to be
regretted to think how soon this Mischief crept in among _Protestants_,
who had scarce well appeared when the _Clergy_ among them began to
speak at the old Rate, and shew that though they had forsaken the
Bishop of _Rome_, they were not resolved to part with their old
_Benefices_; and therefore so soon as any Princes or States shook off
the _Pope_’s Authority, and so demolished the _Abbies_, _Nunneries_,
and other _Monuments of Superstition_, the reformed _Clergy_ began
presently to cry out to the Magistrates to beware of meddling with the
Church’s _Patrimony_, severely exclaiming against making a lawful Use
of those vast Revenues that had been superstitiously bestowed upon the
Church, so called, to the Good and Benefit of the Commonwealth, as no
less than _Sacrilege_.

[Sidenote: 1. _The _Clergy_’s Covetousness._] But by keeping up of this
Kind of Maintenance for the _Ministry_ and _Clergymen_, so called,
there is first a Bait laid for _Covetousness_, _which is Idolatry_,
and of all Things most hurtful; so that for _Covetousness_ Sake,
many, being led by the Desire of _filthy Lucre_, do apply themselves
to be Ministers, that they may get a Livelihood by it. If a Man have
several Children, he will allot one of them to be a Minister; which if
he can get it to be, he reckons it as good as a Patrimony: So that a
fat Benefice hath always many Expectants; and then what Bribing, what
Courting, what Industry, and shameful Actions are used to acquire these
Things, is too openly known, and needs not to be proved.

[Sidenote: _The greedy _Kirk_, a Proverb._] The Scandal that by these
Means is raised among Christians is so manifest, that it is become a
Proverb, that _the_ Kirk _is always_ greedy. Whereby the Gift and Grace
of God being neglected, they have for the most Part no other Motive or
Rule in applying themselves to one Church more than another but the
greater Benefice. For though they hypocritically pretend, at their
accepting of and entering into their Church, that they have nothing
before them but the _Glory of God_ and the _Salvation of Souls_; yet if
a richer Benefice offer itself, they presently find it more for God’s
Glory to remove from the first, and go thither. And thus they make no
Difficulty often to change, while notwithstanding they accuse us that
we allow Ministers to go from Place to Place, and not to be tied to one
Place; but we allow this not for the gaining of Money, but as moved of
God. For if a Minister be called to minister in a particular Place, he
ought not to leave it, except God call him from it, and then he ought
to obey: For we make _the Will of God inwardly revealed_, and _not_ the
_Love of Money_ and more _Gain_, the _Ground_ of _removing_.

[Sidenote: 2. _The _Clergy_’s Luxury._] _Secondly_, From this Abuse
hath proceeded that _Luxury_ and _Idleness_ that most of the _Clergy_
live in, even among _Protestants_ as well as _Papists_, to the great
Scandal of Christianity. For not having lawful Trades to work with
their Hands, and being so superfluously and sumptuously provided for,
they live in _Idleness_ and _Luxury_; and there doth more _Pride_,
_Vanity_, and _worldly Glory_ appear in their _Wives_ and _Children_
than in most others, which is open and evident to all.

[Sidenote: 3. _The _Clergy_’s Cruelty._] _Thirdly_, They become hereby
so _glued_ to the _Love_ of _Money_, that there is none like them in
_Malice_, _Rage_, and _Cruelty_. If they be denied their Hire, they
rage like drunken Men, fret, fume, and as it were go mad. A Man may
sooner satisfy the severest Creditor than them; the general Voice of
the Poor doth confirm this. For indeed they are far more exact in
taking up the Tithes of _Sheep_, _Geese_, _Swine_, and _Eggs_, &c.
and look more narrowly to it than to the Members of their Flock: They
will not miss the least Mite; and the poorest Widow cannot escape
their avaricious Hands. [Sidenote: _Poor _Widow’s Mite_ cannot escape
the Priest’s _greedy Hands.] Twenty Lies they will hear unreproved;
and as many Oaths a Man may swear in their Hearing without offending
them; and greater Evils than all this they can overlook. But if thou
owest them aught, and refusest to pay it, then nothing but War will
they thunder against thee, and they will stigmatize thee with the
horrible Title of _Sacrilege_, and send thee to Hell without Mercy, as
if thou hadst committed the Sin against the Holy Ghost. Of all People
we can best bear Witness to this; [Sidenote: _The Work of _Antichrist_
is Fury, Envy, Malice._] for God having shewn us this corrupt and
Antichristian Ministry, and called us out from it, and gathered us unto
his own Power and Life, to be a _separate People_, so that we dare
not join with, nor hear these Antichristian Hirelings, neither yet
put into their Mouths, or feed them. Oh! what Malice, Envy, and Fury
hath this raised in their Hearts against us! That though we get none
of their Wares, neither will buy them, as knowing them to be naught,
yet will they force us to give them Money: And because we cannot for
Conscience Sake do it, our Sufferings have upon that Account been
unutterable. Yea, to give Account of their Cruelty, and several Sorts
of Inhumanity used against us, would make no small History. These
avaricious Hirelings have come to that Degree of Malice and Rage, that
several poor labouring Men have been carried hundreds of Miles from
their own Dwellings, and shut up in Prison, some two, some three, yea,
some seven Years together, for the Value of one Pound Sterling, and
less. [Sidenote: _A Widow for the Tithe of _Geese_ about four Years
in Prison._] I know myself a poor Widow, that for the Tithes of her
_Geese_, which amounted not to five Shillings, was about four Years
kept in Prison, thirty Miles from her House. Yea, they by Violence
for this Cause have plundered of Men’s Goods the Hundred-fold, and
prejudiced much more; yea, Hundreds have hereby spilt their innocent
Blood; by dying in the _filthy noisome Holes_ and _Prisons_. [Sidenote:
_Some lost their Lives in nasty Holes, some wounded by the Priests_,
&c.] And some of the _Priests_ have been so enraged, that Goods thus
ravished could not satisfy them; but they must also satisfy their Fury
by beating, knocking, and wounding with their Hands innocent Men and
Women, for refusing (for Conscience Sake) to put into their Mouths.

The only Way then soundly to reform and remove all these Abuses,
and take away the Ground and Occasion of them, is, to take away all
_stinted_ and _forced Maintenance_ and _Stipends_. [Sidenote: _Whoso
heap _Teachers_ to themselves, let them provide their Stipend._] As
whoever call or appoint Teachers to themselves, let them accordingly
entertain them: And for such as are called and moved to the _Ministry_
by the Spirit of God, those that receive them, and taste of the Good of
their _Ministry_, will no Doubt provide Things needful for them, and
there will be no Need of a Law to force a Hire for them: For he that
sends them, will take care for them; and they also, _having Food and
Raiment_, will _therewith be content_.

§. XXXIII. [Sidenote: _The Difference between the Ministry of the
_Quakers_ and their _Adversaries.] The Sum then of what is said
is, That _the_ Ministry _that we have pleaded for, and which also
the Lord hath raised up among us is, in all its Parts, like the
true _Ministry_ of the Apostles and primitive Church_. _Whereas the
_Ministry_ our Adversaries seek to uphold and plead for, as it doth in
all in Parts differ from them, so, on the other Hand, it is very like
the false Prophets and Teachers testified against and condemned in the
Scripture_, as may be thus briefly illustrated.

[Sidenote: _The true Ministers _Call.] I. The Ministry and Ministers
we plead for, _are such as are immediately called and sent forth by
Christ and his Spirit unto the Work of the_ Ministry: So were the holy
Apostles and Prophets, as appears by these Places, _Matt._ x. 1. 5.
_Ephes._ iv. 11. _Heb._ v. 4.

1. But the Ministry and Ministers our Opposers plead for, _are such as
have no immediate Call from Christ; to whom the Leading and Motion of
the Spirit is not reckoned necessary; but who are called, sent forth,
and ordained by wicked and ungodly Men_: Such were of old the false
Prophets and Teachers, as appears by these Places, _Jer._ xiv. 14, 15.
_item._ Chap. xxiii. 21. and xxvii. 15.

[Sidenote: _True Ministers _Guide.] II. The Ministers we plead for,
_are such as are actuated and led by God’s Spirit, and by the Power and
Operation of his Grace in their Hearts, are in some Measure converted
and regenerate, and so are good, holy, and gracious Men_: Such were the
holy Prophets and Apostles, as appears from 1 _Tim._ iii. 2, 3, 4, 5,
6. _Tit._ i. 7, 8, 9.

2. But the Ministers our Adversaries plead for, _are such to whom the
Grace of God is no needful Qualification; and so may be true Ministers,
according to them, though they be ungodly, unholy, and profligate Men_:
Such were the false Prophets and Apostles, as appears from _Mic._ iii.
5. 11. 1 _Tim._ vi. 5, 6, 7, 8, &c. 2 _Tim._ iii. 2. 2. _Pet._ ii. 1,
2, 3.

[Sidenote: _True Ministers_ Work.] III. The Ministers we plead for,
_are such as act, move, and labour in the Work of the Ministry, not
from their own mere natural Strength and Ability, but as they are
actuated, moved, supported, assisted and influenced by the Spirit of
God, and minister according to the Gift received, as good Stewards of
the manifold Grace of God_: Such were the holy Prophets and Apostles,
1 _Pet._ iv. 10, 11. 1 _Cor._ i. 17. ii. 3, 4, 5. 13. _Acts_ ii. 4.
_Matt._ x. 20. _Mark_ xiii. 11. _Luke_ xii. 12. 1 _Cor._ xiii. 2.

3. But the Ministers our Adversaries plead for, _are such as wait
not for, nor expect, nor need the Spirit of God to actuate and move
them in the Work of the Ministry; but what they do they do from their
own mere natural Strength and Ability, and what they have gathered
and stolen from the Letter of the Scripture, and other Books, and so
speak it forth in the Strength of their own Wisdom and Eloquence,
and not in the Evidence and Demonstration of the Spirit and Power_:
Such were the false Prophets and Apostles, as appears, _Jer._ xxiii.
30, 31, 32, 34, &c. 1 _Cor._ iv. 18. _Jude_ 16. [Sidenote: _True
Ministers _Humility.] IV. The Ministers we plead for, _are such as,
being holy and humble, contend not for Precedency and Priority, but
rather strive to prefer one another, and serve one another in Love;
neither desire to be distinguished from the rest by their Garments and
large Phylacteries, nor seek the Greetings in the Market-places, nor
uppermost Places at Feasts, nor the chief Seats in the Synagogues; nor
yet to be called of Men _Master_, &c._ Such were the holy Prophets and
Apostles, as appears from _Matt._ xxiii. 8, 9, 10. and xx. 25, 26, 27.

4. But the Ministers our Adversaries plead for, _are such as strive
and contend for Superiority, and claim Precedency over one another;
affecting and ambitiously seeking after the fore-mentioned Things_:
Such were the false Prophets and Apostles in Time past, _Matt._ xxiii.
5, 6, 7.

[Sidenote: _True Ministers _Free Gift.] V. The Ministers we plead
for, _are such as having freely received, freely give; who covet no
Man’s Silver, Gold, or Garments; who seek no Man’s Goods, but seek
them, and the Salvation of their Souls: Whose Hands supply their
own Necessities, working honestly for Bread to themselves and their
Families. And if at any Time they be called of God, so as the Work of
the Lord hinder them from the use of their Trades, take what is freely
given them by such to whom they have communicated Spirituals; and
having Food and Raiment, are therewith content_: Such were the holy
Prophets and Apostles, as appears from _Matt._ x. 8. _Acts_ xx. 33, 34,
35. 1 _Tim._ vi. 8.

5. But the Ministers our Adversaries plead for, _are such as not having
freely received, will not freely give; but are covetous, doing that
which they ought not, for filthy Lucre’s Sake; as to preach for Hire,
and divine for Money, and look for their Gain from their Quarter, and
prepare War against such as put not into their Mouths, _&c._ Greedy
Dogs, which can never have enough. Shepherds who feed themselves, and
not the Flock; eating the Fat, and clothing themselves with the Wool;
making Merchandize of Souls; and following the Way of Balaam, that
loved the Wages of Unrighteousness_: Such were the false Prophets and
Apostles, _Isa._ lvi. 11. _Ezek._ xxxiv. 2, 3. 8. _Mic._ iii. 5. 11.
_Tit._ i. 10, 11. 2 _Pet._ ii. 1, 2, 3. 14, 15.

[Sidenote: _The Ministers _Life_ and _Qualification.] And in a
Word, We are for a holy, spiritual, pure and living _Ministry_, where
the _Ministers_ are both called, qualified and ordered, actuated and
influenced in all the _Steps_ of their _Ministry_ by the Spirit of God;
which being wanting, _we judge_ they cease to be the _Ministers of

But they, judging this _Life_, _Grace_, and _Spirit_ no essential Part
of their _Ministry_, are therefore for the upholding of an human,
carnal, dry, barren, fruitless and dead _Ministry_; of which, alas!
we have seen the Fruits in the most Part of their _Churches_: Of whom
that Saying of the Lord is certainly verified, _Jer._ xxiii. 32.--_I
sent them not, nor commanded them, therefore they shall not profit this
People at all, saith the LORD._


Concerning WORSHIP.

[Sidenote: _What the true Worship is, that is acceptable to God._] _All
    true and acceptable _Worship_ to God is offered in the inward and
    immediate Moving and Drawing of his own Spirit, which is neither
    limited to Places, Times, nor Persons. For though we are to worship
    him always, and continually to fear before him_; [Sidenote: _How to
    be performed._] _yet as to the outward Signification thereof, in
    _Prayers_, _Praises_, or _Preachings_, we ought not to do it in our
    own _Will_, _where_ and _when_ we will; but _where_ and _when_ we
    are moved thereunto by the Stirring and secret Inspiration of the
    Spirit of God in our Hearts; which God heareth and accepteth of,
    and is never wanting to move as thereunto, when Need is; of which
    he himself is the alone proper Judge. All other _Worship_ then,
    both _Praises_, _Prayers_ or _Preachings_, which Man sets about
    in his own Will, and at his own Appointment, which he can both
    begin and end at his Pleasure, do or leave undone as himself seeth
    meet, whether they be a _prescribed Form_, as a _Liturgy_, &c. or
    _Prayers_ conceived _extempore_ by the natural Strength and Faculty
    of the Mind, they are all but _Superstition_, _Will-worship_,
    and _abominable Idolatry_ in the Sight of God, which are now to
    be denied and rejected, and separated from, in this Day of his
    spiritual Arising_: [Sidenote: _Superstition and Will-worship,
    Idolatry._] _However it might have pleased him (_who winked at the
    Times of Ignorance_, with a Respect to the Simplicity and Integrity
    of some, and of his own innocent _Seed_, which lay as it were
    buried in the _Hearts_ of Men under that Mass of _Superstition_)
    _to blow upon the dead and dry Bones_, and to raise some Breathings
    of his own, and answer them; and that until the _Day_ should more
    clearly _dawn_ and _break forth.

§. I. The _Duty of Man_ towards God lieth chiefly in these two
Generals. 1. _In an holy Conformity to the pure Law and Light of God,
so as both to forsake the Evil, and be found in the Practice of those
perpetual and moral Precepts of Righteousness and Equity._ And 2.
_In rendering that Reverence, Honour and Adoration to God, that he
requires and demands of us_; which is comprehended under _Worship_.
Of the _former_ we have already spoken, as also of the different
Relations of _Christians_, as they are distinguished by the several
Measures of Grace received, and given to every one; and in that
Respect have their several Offices in the _Body of Christ_, which is
the _Church_. Now I come to speak of _Worship_, or of those Acts,
whether private or publick, general or particular, whereby Man renders
to God that Part of his Duty which relates immediately to him: And
as _Obedience is better than Sacrifice_, so neither is any Sacrifice
_acceptable_, but that which is done according to the Will of him to
whom it is _offered_. But Men, finding it easier to _sacrifice_ in
their own Wills, than obey God’s Will, have heaped up _Sacrifices_
without _Obedience_; [Sidenote: True _Worship and Duty to God-wards
corrupted._] and thinking to deceive God, as they do one another,
give him a Shew of Reverence, Honour and Worship, while they are both
inwardly estranged and alienated from his holy and righteous Life, and
wholly Strangers to the pure Breathings of his Spirit, in which the
acceptable Sacrifice and Worship is only offered up. Hence it is, that
there is not any Thing relating to Man’s Duty towards God, which among
all Sorts of People hath been more vitiated, and in which the Devil
hath more prevailed, than in abusing Man’s Mind concerning this Thing:
And as among many others, so among those called _Christians_, nothing
hath been more out of Order, and more corrupted, as some _Papists_
and all _Protestants_, do acknowledge. As I freely approve whatsoever
the _Protestants_ have reformed from _Papists_ in this Respect; so I
meddle not at this Time with their Controversies about it: [Sidenote:
_The _Popish Mass (Idolatry)_ denied, with all their_ Trumpery.]
Only it suffices me with them to deny, as no Part of the true Worship
of God, that abominable Superstition and Idolatry the _Popish Mass_,
the _Adoration of Saints and Angels_, the _Veneration of Relicks_,
the _Visitation of Sepulchres_, and all those other superstitious
Ceremonies, _Confraternities_, and _endless Pilgrimages_ of the
_Romish Synagogue_. Which all may suffice to evince to _Protestants_,
that _Antichrist_ hath wrought more in this than in any other Part of
the _Christian Religion_; [Sidenote: _If_ Protestants _have made a_
perfect Reformation.] and so it concerns them narrowly to consider,
whether herein they have made a clear and perfect Reformation; as to
which stands the Controversy betwixt them and us. For we find many of
the Branches lopt off by them, but the Root yet remaining; to wit, a
_Worship_ acted in and from Man’s Will and Spirit, and not by and from
the Spirit of God: For the true _Christian_ and _Spiritual Worship
of God_ hath been so early lost, and Man’s Wisdom and Will hath so
quickly and throughly mixed itself herein, that both the _Apostasy_
in this Respect hath been greatest, and the _Reformation_ herefrom,
as to the evil Root, most difficult. Therefore let not the _Reader_
suddenly stumble at the Account of our _Proposition_ in this Matter,
but patiently hear us explain ourselves in this Respect, and I hope
(by the Assistance of God) to make it appear, that though our Manner
of Speaking and Doctrine seem most singular and different from all
other Sorts of _Christians_; yet it is most according to the purest
_Christian Religion_, and indeed most needful to be observed and
followed. And that there be no Ground of Mistake (for that I was
necessitated to speak in few Words, and therefore more obscurely and
dubiously in the _Proposition_ itself) it is fit in the first Place to
declare and explain our Sense, and clear the _State of the Controversy_.

§. II. [Sidenote: I.] [Sidenote: _What _Worship_ here is spoken of._]
And first, let it be considered, that what is here affirmed, is spoken
of the _Worship of God_ in these _Gospel-times_, and not of the Worship
that was under or before the _Law_: For the particular Commands of
God to Men _then_, are not sufficient to authorize us _now_ to do
the same Things; else we might be supposed at present acceptably to
offer Sacrifice as they did, which all acknowledge to be ceased. So
that what might have been both commendable and acceptable under the
_Law_, may justly now be charged with Superstition, yea, and Idolatry.
So that impertinently, in this Respect, doth _Arnoldus_ rage against
this Proposition, [_Exercit. Theolog._ Sect. 44.] saying; _That I deny
all publick Worship, and that according to me, such as in _Enoch_’s
Time publickly began to call upon the Name of the Lord; and such
as at the Command of God went thrice up to _Jerusalem_ to worship;
and that _Anna_, _Simeon_, _Mary_, &c. were Idolaters, because they
used the publick Worship of those Times_; such a Consequence is most
impertinent; and no less foolish and absurd, than if I should infer
from _Paul_’s expostulating with the _Galatians_ for their returning
to the _Jewish Ceremonies_, that he therefore condemned _Moses_ and
all the _Prophets_ as foolish and ignorant, because they used those
Things: The forward Man, not heeding the different Dispensation of
Times, ran into this Impertinency. [Sidenote: _Ceremonies under the Law
were not essential to true_ Worship.] Though a spiritual Worship might
have been, and no Doubt was practised by many under the _Law_ in great
Simplicity; yet will it not follow, that it were no Superstition to use
all those _Ceremonies_ that they used, which were by God dispensed to
the _Jews_, not as being essential to _true Worship_, or necessary as
of themselves for transmitting and entertaining an _holy Fellowship_
betwixt him and his People; but in Condescension to them, who were
inclinable to Idolatry. Albeit then in this, as in most other Things,
the Substance was enjoyed under the _Law_ by such as were spiritual
indeed; yet was it veiled and surrounded with many _Rites_ and
_Ceremonies_, which it is no Ways lawful for us to use now under the

§. III. [Sidenote: II.] [Sidenote: True Worship _is not limited to
Place or Person._] _Secondly_, Albeit I say, that this _Worship_ is
neither limited to Times, Places nor Persons; yet I would not be
understood, as if I intended the putting away of all set Times and
Places to worship: God forbid I should think of such an Opinion.
Nay, we are none of those that _forsake the Assembling of ourselves_
together; but have even certain Times and Places, in which we carefully
meet together (nor can we be driven therefrom by the Threats and
Persecutions of Men) to _wait upon God_, and _worship him_. [Sidenote:
_Necessity of Meetings._] To _meet together_ we think necessary for the
People of God; because, so long as we are clothed with this outward
Tabernacle, there is a Necessity to the entertaining of a joint and
visible Fellowship, and bearing of an outward Testimony for God, and
seeing of the Faces of one another, that we concur with our Persons as
well as Spirits: To be accompanied with that inward Love and Unity of
Spirit, doth greatly tend to encourage and refresh the Saints.

[Sidenote: 1. Will-worship _doth limit the Spirit of God._] But the
_Limitation_ we condemn is, that whereas the Spirit of God should be
the immediate Actor, Mover, Persuader and Influencer of Man in the
particular Acts of Worship, when the Saints are met together, this
Spirit is _limited_ in its Operations, by setting up a particular Man
or Men to preach and pray in Man’s Will; and all the rest are excluded
from so much as believing that they are to wait for God’s Spirit to
move them in such Things: And so they neglecting that in themselves
which should quicken them, and not waiting to feel the pure Breathings
of God’s Spirit, so as to obey them, are led merely to depend upon the
Preacher, and hear what he will say.

[Sidenote: 2. _True _Teaching_ of the Word of God._] _Secondly_, In
that these peculiar Men come not thither to meet with the Lord, and to
wait for the inward Motions and Operations of his Spirit; and so to
pray as they feel the Spirit to breathe _through_ them, and _in_ them;
and to preach, as they find themselves actuated and moved by God’s
Spirit, and as he gives Utterance, so as to speak a Word in Season to
refresh weary Souls, and as the present Condition and State of the
People’s Hearts require; suffering God by his Spirit both to prepare
People’s Hearts, and also give the Preacher to speak what may be fit
and seasonable for them: But he (viz. _the Preacher_) hath hammered
together in his Closet, according to his own Will, by his human Wisdom
and Literature, and by stealing the Words of Truth from the Letter
of the Scriptures, and patching together other Men’s Writings and
Observations, so much as will hold him speaking an Hour, while the
Glass runs; [Sidenote: Priests _preach by Hap-hazard their studied
Sermons._] and without waiting or feeling the inward Influence of the
Spirit of God, he declaims that by Hap-hazard, whether it be fit or
seasonable for the People’s Condition, or not; and when he has ended
his Sermon, he saith his Prayer also in his own Will; and so _there
is an End of the Business_. Which _customary Worship_, as it is no
Ways acceptable to God, so how unfruitful it is, and unprofitable to
those that are found in it, the present Condition of the Nations doth
sufficiently declare. It appears then, that we are not against _set
Times_ for Worship, as _Arnoldus_ against this Proposition, _Sect.
45_. no less impertinently allegeth; offering needlesly to prove that
which is not denied: Only these Times being appointed for outward
Conveniency, we may not therefore think with the _Papists_, that these
Days are _holy_, and lead People into a superstitious Observation of
them; being persuaded that _all Days are alike holy in the Sight of
God_. [Sidenote: _Whether Days are holy._] And although it be not my
present Purpose to make a long Digression concerning the Debates among
_Protestants_ about the _first Day of the Week_, commonly called the
_Lord’s Day_, yet forasmuch as it comes fitly in here, I shall briefly
signify our Sense thereof.

§. IV. [Sidenote: _Of the _First Day_ of the _Week_, commonly called
the _Lord’s Day.] We, not seeing any Ground in Scripture for it,
cannot be so superstitious as to believe, that either the _Jewish
Sabbath_ now continues, or that the _first Day_ of the _Week_ is the
_Anti-type_ thereof, or the true _Christian Sabbath_; which with
_Calvin_ we believe to have a more _spiritual Sense_: And therefore
we know no moral Obligation by the _fourth Command_, or elsewhere, to
keep the _first Day of the Week_ more than any other, or any Holiness
inherent in it. But _First_, forasmuch as it is necessary that there
be some Time set apart for the Saints to meet together to wait upon
God; and that _Secondly_, it is fit at some Times they be freed from
their other outward Affairs; and that _Thirdly_, Reason and Equity
doth allow that Servants and Beasts have some Time allowed them to be
eased from their continual Labour; and that _Fourthly_, it appears
that the Apostles and Primitive Christians did use the _first Day of
the Week_ for these Purposes; we find ourselves sufficiently moved
for these Causes to do so also, without superstitiously straining the
Scriptures for another Reason: Which, that it is not to be there found,
many _Protestants_, yea, _Calvin_ himself, upon the _fourth Command_,
hath abundantly evinced. And though we therefore meet, and abstain
from working upon this _Day_, yet doth not that hinder us from having
_Meetings_ also for _Worship_ at other Times.

§. V. _Thirdly_, Though according to the Knowledge of God, revealed
unto us by the Spirit, through that more _full Dispensation of Light_
which we believe the Lord hath brought about in this Day, we judge
it our Duty to hold forth that pure and spiritual Worship which is
acceptable to God, and answerable to the Testimony of Christ and his
Apostles, and likewise to testify against and deny not only manifest
Superstition and Idolatry, but also all formal Will-worship, which
stands not in the Power of God; [Sidenote: _The _Worship_ in the
Apostasy._] yet, I say, we do not deny the whole Worship of all those
that have borne the Name of _Christians_ even in the Apostasy, as if
God had never heard their Prayers, nor accepted any of them: God forbid
we should be so void of Charity! The latter Part of the Proposition
sheweth the Contrary. And as we would not be so _absurd_ on the one
Hand to conclude, because of the Errors and Darkness that many were
covered and surrounded with in _Babylon_, that none of their Prayers
were heard or accepted of God, so will we not be so _unwary_ on the
other, as to conclude, that because God heard and pitied them, so we
ought to continue in these Errors and Darkness, and not come out of
_Babylon_, when it is by God discovered unto us. [Sidenote: _The Popish
Mass or Vespers._] The _Popish Mass_ and _Vespers_ I do believe to be,
as to the Matter of them, _abominable Idolatry_ and _Superstition_,
and so also believe the _Protestants_; yet will neither _I_ or
_they_ affirm, that in the Darkness of _Popery_ no Upright-hearted
Men, though zealous in these Abominations, have been heard of God,
or accepted of him: [Sidenote: Bernard _and_ Bonaventure, Taulerus,
Tho. à Kempis, _have tasted of the Love of God._] Who can deny, but
that both _Bernard_ and _Bonaventure, Taulerus, Thomas à Kempis,_
and divers others have both known and tasted of the Love of God, and
felt the Power and Virtue of God’s Spirit working with them for their
Salvation? And yet ought we not to forsake and deny those Superstitions
which they were found in? The _Calvinistical Presbyterians_ do much
upbraid (and I say not without Reason) the Formality and Deadness of
the _Episcopalian_ and _Lutheran Liturgies_; [Sidenote: _The Bishops
Liturgy._] and yet, as they will not deny but there have been some good
Men among them, so neither dare they refuse, but that when that good
Step was brought in by them, of turning the publick Prayers into the
vulgar Tongues, though continued in a _Liturgy_, it was acceptable to
God, and sometimes accompanied with his Power and Presence: Yet will
not the _Presbyterians_ have it from thence concluded, that the _Common
Prayers_ should still continue; so likewise, though we should confess,
that, through the Mercy and wonderful Condescension of God, there have
been upright in Heart, both among _Papists_ and _Protestants_, yet can
we not therefore approve of their Way in the General, or not go on to
the upholding of that _spiritual Worship_, which the Lord is calling
all to, and so to the testifying against whatsoever stands in the Way
of it.

§. VI. [Sidenote: _Assemblies of Worship in Publick described._]
_Fourthly_, To come then to the _State of the Controversy_, as to the
_publick Worship_, we judge it the Duty of all to be diligent in the
Assembling of themselves together (and what we have been, and are, in
this Matter, our Enemies in _Great Britain_, who have used all Means
to hinder our assembling together to worship God, may bear Witness)
and when assembled, the great Work of one and all ought to be to wait
upon God; and returning out of their own Thoughts and Imaginations, to
feel the Lord’s Presence, and know a _Gathering into his Name_ indeed,
where he is _in the Midst_, according to his Promise. And as every
one is thus gathered, and so met together inwardly in their Spirits,
as well as outwardly in their Persons, there the secret Power and
Virtue of Life is known to refresh the Soul, and the pure Motions and
Breathings of God’s Spirit are felt to arise; from which, as Words of
Declaration, Prayers or Praises arise, the acceptable Worship is known,
which edifies the Church, and is well-pleasing to God. And no Man
here limits the Spirit of God, nor bringeth forth his own conned and
gathered Stuff; but every one puts that forth which the Lord puts into
their Hearts: And it is uttered forth not in Man’s Will and Wisdom,
but _in the Evidence and Demonstration of the Spirit, and of Power_.
[Sidenote: _Its glorious _Dispensation.] Yea, though there be not a
Word spoken, yet is the true spiritual Worship performed, and the Body
of Christ edified; yea, it may, and hath often fallen out among us,
that divers Meetings have past without one Word; and yet our Souls have
been greatly edified and refreshed, and our Hearts wonderfully overcome
with the secret Sense of God’s Power and Spirit, which without Words
hath been ministered from one Vessel to another. This is indeed strange
and incredible to the mere natural and carnally-minded Man, who will be
apt to judge all Time lost where there is not something spoken that is
obvious to the outward Senses; and therefore I shall insist a little
upon this Subject, as one that can speak from a certain Experience, and
not by mere Hearsay, of this wonderful and glorious Dispensation; which
hath so much the more of the Wisdom and Glory of God in it, as it is
contrary to the Nature of Man’s Spirit, Will, and Wisdom.

§. VII. [Sidenote: _The silent waiting upon God obtained._] As there
can be nothing more opposite to the natural Will and Wisdom of Man than
this _silent Waiting upon God_, so neither can it be obtained, nor
rightly comprehended by Man, but as he layeth down his own Wisdom and
Will, so as to be content to be throughly subject to God. And therefore
it was not preached, nor can be so practised, but by such as find no
outward Ceremony, no Observations, no Words, yea, not the best and
purest Words, even the Words of Scripture, able to satisfy their weary
and afflicted Souls: Because where all these may be, the Life, Power,
and Virtue, which make such Things effectual, may be wanting. Such, I
say, were necessitated to cease from all Externals, and to be silent
before the Lord; and [97]being directed to that inward Principle of
_Life_ and _Light_ in themselves, as the most excellent Teacher, which
_can never be removed into a Corner_, came thereby to be taught to wait
upon God in the Measure of _Life_ and _Grace_ received from him, and to
cease from their own forward Words and Actings, in the natural Willing
and Comprehension, and feel after this inward Seed of Life; that, as
it moveth, they may move with it, and be actuated by its Power, and
influenced, whether to pray, preach or sing. And so from this Principle
of Man’s being silent, and not acting in the Things of God of himself,
until thus actuated by God’s _Light_ and _Grace in the Heart_, did
naturally spring that Manner of sitting silent together, and waiting
together upon the Lord. For many thus principled, meeting together
in the pure Fear of the Lord, did not apply themselves presently to
speak, pray, or sing, _&c._ being afraid to be found acting forwardly
in their own Wills, but each made it their Work to retire inwardly to
the Measure of Grace in themselves, not being only silent as to Words,
but even abstaining from all their own Thoughts, Imaginations and
Desires; so watching in a holy Dependence upon the Lord, and meeting
together not only outwardly in one Place, [Sidenote: _What it is to
meet in _Jesus_ Name._] but thus inwardly in _one Spirit_, and in _one
Name of Jesus_, which is his Power and Virtue, they come thereby to
enjoy and feel the Arisings of this Life, which, as it prevails in each
Particular, becomes as a Flood of Refreshment, and overspreads the
whole Meeting: For Man, and Man’s Part and Wisdom, being denied and
chained down in every Individual, and God exalted, and his Grace in
Dominion in the Heart, thus his _Name_ comes to be _one_ in _all_, and
his Glory breaks forth, and covers all; and there is such a holy Awe
and Reverence upon every Soul, that if the natural Part should arise
in any, or the wise Part, or what is not one with the Life, it would
presently be chained down, and judged out. And when any are, through
the Breaking forth of this Power, constrained to utter a Sentence of
Exhortation or Praise, or to breathe to the Lord in Prayer, then all
are sensible of it; for the same Life in them answers to it, [98]_as
in Water Face answereth to Face_. This is that _divine_ and _spiritual
Worship_, which the World neither knoweth nor understandeth, which
the _Vulture_’s Eye seeth not into. [Sidenote: _Advantages of _silent
Meetings.] Yet many and great are the Advantages which my Soul,
with many others, hath tasted of hereby, and which would be found of
all such as would seriously apply themselves hereunto: For, when
People are gathered thus together, not merely to hear Men, nor depend
upon them, but [99]_all are inwardly taught to stay their Minds upon
the Lord, and wait for his Appearance in their Hearts_; thereby the
forward Working of the Spirit of Man is stayed and hindered from mixing
itself with the Worship of God; and the Form of this Worship is so
naked and void of all outward and worldly Splendor, that all Occasion
for Man’s Wisdom to be exercised in that Superstition and Idolatry
hath no Lodging here; and so there being also an inward Quietness and
Retiredness of Mind, the _Witness of God_ ariseth _in the Heart_, and
the _Light of Christ_ shineth, whereby the Soul cometh to see its own
Condition. And there being many joined together in the same Work,
there is an inward Travail and Wrestling; and also, as the Measure of
Grace is abode in, an Overcoming of the Power and Spirit of Darkness;
and thus we are often greatly strengthened and renewed in the Spirits
of our Minds without a Word, and we enjoy and possess the [100]_holy
Fellowship_ and _Communion of the Body and Blood of Christ_, by which
our inward Man is nourished and fed; which makes us not to dote upon
outward _Water_, and _Bread_ and _Wine_, in our spiritual Things. Now
as many thus gathered together grow up in the Strength, Power, and
Virtue of Truth, and as Truth comes thus to have Victory and Dominion
in their Souls, then they receive an Utterance, and speak steadily to
the Edification of their Brethren, and the _pure Life_ hath a free
Passage through them, and what is thus spoken edifieth the Body indeed.
[Sidenote: _Speaking to Edification._] Such is the evident Certainty
of that divine Strength that is communicated by thus meeting together,
and waiting in Silence upon God, that sometimes when one hath come in
that hath been unwatchful and wandering in his Mind, or suddenly out
of the Hurry of outward Business, and so not inwardly gathered with
the rest, so soon as he retires himself inwardly, this Power being in
a good Measure raised in the whole Meeting, will suddenly lay Hold
upon his Spirit, and wonderfully help to raise up the Good in him,
and beget him into the Sense of the same Power, to the Melting and
Warming of his Heart; even as the Warmth would take Hold upon a Man
that is cold coming into a Stove, or as a Flame will lay Hold upon
some little combustible Matter being near unto it. Yea, if it fall out
that several met together be straying in their Minds, though outwardly
silent, and so wandering from the Measure of Grace in themselves
(which through the Working of the Enemy, and Negligence of some, may
fall out) if either one come in, or may be in, who is watchful, and in
whom the _Life_ is raised in a great Measure, as that one keeps his
Place, he will feel a secret Travail for the rest in a Sympathy with
the _Seed_ which is oppressed in the other, and kept from arising by
their Thoughts and Wanderings; [Sidenote: _A secret Travail one for
another in silent Meetings_.] and as such a faithful one waits in the
_Light_, and keeps in this _divine Work_, God oftentimes answers the
secret Travail and Breathings of his own _Seed_ through such a one, so
that the rest will find themselves _secretly smitten_ without Words,
and that one will be as a _Midwife_ through the secret Travails of his
Soul to bring forth the Life in them, just as a little Water thrown
into a Pump brings up the rest, whereby Life will come to be raised in
all, and the vain Imaginations brought down; and such a one is felt by
the rest to minister Life unto them without Words. Yea, sometimes when
there is not a Word in the Meeting, but all are silently waiting, if
one come in that is rude and wicked, and in whom the Power of Darkness
prevaileth much, perhaps with an Intention to mock or do Mischief, if
the whole Meeting be gathered into the _Life_, and it be raised in a
good Measure, it will strike Terror into such an one, [Sidenote: _The
Mocker struck with_ Terror _when no Word is spoken_.] and he will
feel himself unable to resist; but by the secret Strength and Virtue
thereof, the Power of Darkness in him will be chained down: And if the
Day of his Visitation be not expired, it will reach to the Measure of
Grace in him, and raise it up to the Redeeming of his Soul. And this we
often bear Witness of, so that we have had frequent Occasion in this
Respect, since God hath gathered us to be a People, to renew this old
Saying of many, [101]_Is _Saul_ also among the Prophets?_ For not a
few have come to be convinced of the Truth after this Manner, of which
I myself, in Part, am a true Witness, who not by Strength of Arguments,
or by a particular Disquisition of each Doctrine, and Convincement
of my Understanding thereby, came to receive and bear Witness of the
Truth, but by being secretly reached by this _Life_; [Sidenote: _The
true Convincement._] for when I came into the _silent Assemblies_ of
God’s People, I felt a _secret Power_ among them, which touched my
Heart, and as I gave Way unto it, I found the Evil weakening in me, and
the Good raised up, and so I became thus knit and united unto them,
hungering more and more after the Increase of this Power and Life,
whereby I might feel myself perfectly redeemed. And indeed this is the
surest Way to become a _Christian_, to whom afterwards the Knowledge
and Understanding of _Principles_ will not be wanting, but will grow up
so much as is needful, as the natural Fruit of this good Root, and such
a Knowledge will not be _barren_ nor _unfruitful_. After this Manner
we desire therefore all that come among us to be proselyted, knowing
that though Thousands should be convinced in their Understanding of
all the _Truths_ we maintain, yet if they were not sensible of this
_inward Life_, and their Souls not changed from Unrighteousness to
Righteousness, they could add nothing to us. [Sidenote: 1 Cor. 6. 17.
_The Life of Righteousness doth join us to the Lord._] For this is that
_Cement_ whereby we are joined _as to the Lord_, so to one another,
and without this none can worship with us. Yea, if such should come
among us, and from that Understanding and Convincement they have of the
_Truth_, speak ever so true Things, and utter them forth with ever so
much Excellency of Speech, if this _Life_ were wanting, it would not
edify us at all, but be as _sounding Brass, or a tinkling Cymbal_, 1
Cor. xiii. 1.

[97] Isa. 30. 20.

[98] Prov. 27. 19.

[99] Isa. 10. 20. _and_ 26. 3.

[100] Ephes. 4. 3.

[101] 1 Sam. 10. 12.

§. VIII. [Sidenote: _Our Work and Worship in our Meetings._] Our
_Work_ then and _Worship_ is, when we meet together, for every one to
_watch and wait upon God in themselves_, and to be _gathered_ from all
Visibles thereunto. And as every one is thus stated, they come to find
the _Good_ arise over the _Evil_, and the _Pure_ over the _Impure_, in
which God reveals himself, and draweth near to every Individual, and so
he is in the Midst in the General, whereby each not only partakes of
the particular Refreshment and Strength which comes from the Good in
himself, but is a Sharer in the whole Body, as being a living Member of
the Body, having a joint Fellowship and Communion with all. And as this
Worship is stedfastly preached and kept to, it becomes easy, though it
be very hard at first to the natural Man, whose roving Imaginations
and running worldly Desires are not so easily brought to Silence. And
therefore the Lord Often-times, when any turn towards him, and have
true Desires thus to Wait upon him, and find great Difficulty through
the Unstayedness of their Minds, doth in Condescension and Compassion
cause his Power to break forth in a more strong and powerful Manner.
And when the Mind sinks down, and waits for the Appearance of _Life_,
and that the Power of Darkness in the Soul wrestles and works against
it, then the good Seed, as it ariseth, will be found to work as Physick
in the Soul, especially if such a weak one be in the Assembly of divers
others in whom the Life is arisen in greater Dominion, and through
the contrary Workings of the Power of Darkness there will be found an
inward Striving in the Soul as really in the Mystery as ever _Esau_
and _Jacob_ strove in _Rebecca_’s Womb. [Sidenote: Esau _and_ Jacob
_strove in _Rebecca_’s Womb._] And from this inward Travail, while
the _Darkness_ seeks to obscure the _Light_, and the _Light_ breaks
through the _Darkness_, which it always will do, if the Soul gives not
its Strength to the Darkness, there will be such a painful Travail
found in the Soul, that will even work upon the outward Man, so that
Often-times, through the Working thereof, the Body will be greatly
shaken, and many Groans, and Sighs, and Tears, even as the Pangs of
a Woman in Travail, will lay hold upon it; yea, and this not only as
to one, but when the Enemy, who when the _Children of God_ assemble
together is not wanting to be present, to see if he can let their
Comfort, hath prevailed in any Measure in a whole Meeting, and strongly
worketh against it by spreading and propagating his dark Power, and by
drawing out the Minds of such as are met from the Life in them, as they
come to be sensible of this Power of his that works against them, and
to wrestle with it by the _Armour of Light_, [Sidenote: _The Travail
crowned with a victorious Song._] sometimes the Power of God will break
forth into a whole Meeting, and there will be such an inward Travail,
while each is seeking to overcome the Evil in themselves, that by the
strong contrary Workings of these opposite Powers, like the Going of
two contrary Tides, every Individual will be strongly exercised as in a
Day of Battle, and thereby Trembling and a Motion of Body will be upon
most, if not upon all, which, as the Power of Truth prevails, will from
Pangs and Groans end with a _sweet Sound of Thanksgiving_ and _Praise_.
[Sidenote: _The Name of _Quakers_ whence it sprung._] And from this
the Name of _Quakers_, i. e. _Tremblers_, was first reproachfully cast
upon us; which though it be none of our Choosing, yet in this Respect
we are not ashamed of it, but have rather Reason to rejoice therefore,
even that we are sensible of this Power that hath oftentimes laid hold
of our Adversaries, and made them yield unto us, and join with us,
and confess to the Truth, before they had any distinct or discursive
Knowledge of our _Doctrines_, so that sometimes many at one Meeting
have been thus convinced: And this Power would sometimes also reach to
and wonderfully work even in little Children, to the Admiration and
Astonishment of many.

§. IX. Many are the blessed Experiences which I could relate of this
_Silence_ and Manner of _Worship_; [Sidenote: _Yet Silence is no Law,
but Words may follow._] yet I do not so much commend and speak of
_Silence_ as if we had bound ourselves by any Law to exclude _Praying_
or _Preaching_, or tied ourselves thereunto; not at all: For as our
_Worship_ consisteth not in _Words_, so neither in _Silence_, as
_Silence_; but _in an holy Dependence of the Mind upon God_: From
which Dependence _Silence_ necessarily follows in the first Place,
until _Words_ can be brought forth, which are from God’s Spirit. And
God is not wanting to move in his _Children_ to bring forth Words
of Exhortation or Prayer, when it is needful; so that of the many
Gatherings and Meetings of such as are convinced of the Truth, there
is scarce any in whom God raiseth not up some or other to minister to
his Brethren; and there are few Meetings that are altogether _silent_.
For when many are met together in this one Life and Name, it doth most
naturally and frequently excite them to _pray_ to and _praise God_,
and stir up one another by mutual Exhortation and Instructions; yet we
judge it needful there be in the first Place some Time of _Silence_,
during which every one may be gathered _inwardly_ to the Word and Gift
of Grace, from which he that ministereth may receive Strength to bring
forth what he ministereth; and that they that hear may have a Sense
to discern betwixt the _Precious_ and the _Vile_, and not to hurry
into the Exercise of these Things so soon as the Bell rings, as other
_Christians_ do. Yea, and we doubt not, but assuredly know, that the
Meeting may be good and refreshful, though from the sitting down to the
rising up thereof there hath not been a Word as outwardly spoken, and
yet _Life_ may have been known to abound in each Particular, and an
inward growing up therein and thereby, yea, so as Words might have been
spoken acceptably, and from the Life: [Sidenote: _No absolute Necessity
for Words, though from the Life at Times._] Yet there being no absolute
Necessity laid upon any so to do, all might have chosen rather
_quietly_ and _silently_ to possess and enjoy the Lord in themselves,
which is very sweet and comfortable to the Soul that hath thus learned
to be gathered out of all its own Thoughts and Workings, to feel the
Lord to bring forth both the Will and the Deed, which many can declare
by a blessed Experience: Though indeed it cannot but be hard for the
natural Man to receive or believe this _Doctrine_, and therefore it
must be rather by a sensible Experience, and by coming to make Proof of
it, than by Arguments, that such can be convinced of this Thing, seeing
it is not enough to _believe_ it, if they come not also to _enjoy_ and
_possess_ it; yet in Condescension to, and for the Sake of, such as may
be the more willing to apply themselves to the Practice and Experience
hereof, if they found their Understandings convinced of it, and that
it is founded upon Scripture and Reason, I find a Freedom of Mind to
add some few Considerations of this Kind, for the Confirmation hereof,
besides what is before mentioned of our Experience.

§. X. [Sidenote: _To _wait_ and _watch_ commanded in the Scripture._]
That _to wait upon God_, and to _watch before him_, is a Duty incumbent
upon all, I suppose none will deny; and that this also is _a Part of
Worship_ will not be called in Question, since there is scarce any
other so frequently commanded in the holy Scriptures, as may appear
from _Psalm_ xxvii. 14. and xxxvii. 7. 34. _Prov._ xx. 22. _Isa._
xxx. 18. _Hosea_ xii. 6. _Zech._ iii. 8. _Matt._ xxiv. 42. and xxv.
13. and xxvi. 41. _Mark_ xiii. 33. 35. 37. _Luke_ xxi. 36. _Acts_
i. 4. and xx. 31. 1 _Cor._ xvi. 13. _Col._ iv. 2. 1 _Thess._ v. 6.
2 _Tim._ iv. 5. 1 _Pet._ iv. 7. Also this Duty is often recommended
with very great and precious Promises, as _Psalm_ xxv. 3. and xxxvii.
9. and lxix. 6. _Isa._ xlii. 23. _Lam._ iii. 25, 26. _They that wait
upon the Lord shall renew their Strength_, &c. _Isa._ xl. 31. Now how
is this _waiting upon God_, or _watching before him_, but by this
_Silence_ of which we have spoken? Which as it is in itself a _great_
and _principal Duty_, so it necessarily in order both of _Nature_ and
_Time_ precedeth all other. But that it may be the better and more
perfectly understood, as it is not only an _outward Silence_ of the
Body, but an _inward Silence_ of the Mind from all its own Imaginations
and Self-cogitations, let it be considered according to _Truth_, and to
the _Principles_ and _Doctrines_ heretofore affirmed and proved, that
Man is to be considered in a twofold Respect, to wit, in his _natural,
unregenerate, and fallen State_, and in his _spiritual and renewed
Condition_; from whence ariseth that Distinction of the _natural_ and
_spiritual Man_ so much used by the Apostle, and heretofore spoken of.
Also these _two Births_ of the Mind proceed from the _two Seeds_ in
Man respectively, to wit, the _good Seed_ and the _evil_; and from the
_evil Seed_ doth not only proceed all Manner of gross and abominable
Wickedness and Profanity, but also Hypocrisy, and those _Wickednesses_
which the Scripture calls _spiritual_, [Sidenote: Whence Wickednesses
_arise that are spiritual._] because it is the _Serpent_ working in and
by the natural Man in Things that are _spiritual_, which having a Shew
and Appearance of Good, are so much the more hurtful and dangerous, as
it is _Satan transformed_ and _transforming himself into an Angel of
Light_; and therefore doth the Scripture so pressingly and frequently,
as we have heretofore had _Occasion_ to observe, shut out and exclude
the natural Man from meddling with the _Things of God_, denying his
Endeavours therein, though acted and performed by the most eminent of
his Parts, as of Wisdom and Utterance.

Also this _spiritual Wickedness_ is of two Sorts, though both one in
Kind, as proceeding from one Root, yet differing in their Degrees,
and in the Subjects also sometimes. The one is, when as the natural
Man, meddling with and working in the Things of _Religion_, doth
from his own Conceptions and Divinations affirm or propose wrong and
erroneous Notions and Opinions of God and Things spiritual, and invent
Superstitions, Ceremonies, Observations, and Rites in Worship, from
whence have sprung all the Heresies and Superstitions that are among
_Christians_. [Sidenote: _From whence all Heresies did spring._] The
other is, when as the natural Man, from a mere Conviction of his
Understanding, doth in the Forwardness of his own Will, and by his own
natural Strength, without the Influence and Leading of God’s Spirit,
go about either in his Understanding to imagine, conceive, or think
of the Things of God, or actually to perform them by preaching or
praying. [Sidenote: _True_ Christianity, _wherein it consists not_.]
The _First_ is a Missing both in Matter and Form; the _Second_ is a
Retaining of the Form without the Life and Substance of _Christianity_;
because _Christian Religion_ consisteth not in a mere Belief of true
_Doctrines_, or a mere Performance of _Acts_ good in themselves, or
else the bare Letter of the Scripture, though spoken by a _Drunkard_,
or a _Devil_, might be said to be _Spirit_ and _Life_, which I judge
none will be so absurd as to affirm; and also it would follow, that
where the Form of Godliness is, there the Power is also, which is
contrary to the express Words of the Apostle. For the Form of Godliness
cannot be said to be, where either the Notions and Opinions believed
are erroneous and ungodly, or the Acts performed evil and wicked; for
then it would be the Form of Ungodliness, and not of Godliness: But
of this more hereafter, when we shall speak particularly of Preaching
and Praying. Now though this last be not so bad as the former, yet it
hath made Way for it; for Men having first departed from the Life and
Substance of true _Religion_ and _Worship_, to wit, from the inward
Power and Virtue of the Spirit, so as therein to act, and thereby to
have all their Actions enlivened, have only retained the Form and
Shew, to wit, the true Words and Appearance; and so acting in their
own natural and unrenewed Wills in this Form, the Form could not but
quickly decay, and be vitiated. For the working and active Spirit of
Man could not contain itself within the Simplicity and Plainness of
Truth, but giving Way to his own numerous Inventions and Imaginations,
began to vary in the Form, and adapt it to his own Inventions, until
by Degrees the Form of Godliness for the most Part came to be lost, as
well as the Power. [Sidenote: Idolatry _does hug its own Conceivings._]
For this Kind of _Idolatry_, whereby Man loveth, idolizeth, and
embraceth his own Conceptions, Inventions, and Product of his own
Brain, is so incident unto him, and feared in his fallen Nature, that
so long as his natural Spirit is the first Author and Actor of him, and
is that by which he only is guided and moved in his Worship towards
God, so as not first to wait for another Guide to direct him, he can
never perform the pure spiritual Worship, nor bring forth any Thing but
the Fruit of the first, fallen, natural, and corrupt Root. Wherefore
the Time appointed of God being come, wherein by _Jesus Christ_ he
hath been pleased to restore the true _spiritual Worship_, and the
outward Form of _Worship_, which was appointed by God to the _Jews_,
and whereof the Manner and Time of its Performance was particularly
determined by God himself, being come to an End, [Sidenote: _No Form of
_Worship_ but the Spirit prescribed by Christ._] we find that _Jesus
Christ_, the Author of the _Christian Religion_, prescribes no _set
Form of Worship_ to his Children, under the more pure Administration
of the _New Covenant_,[102] save that he only tells them, That the
_Worship now to be performed is spiritual_, and _in the Spirit_. And
it is especially to be observed, that in the whole _New Testament_
there is no Order nor Command given in this Thing, but to follow the
Revelation of the Spirit, save only that general one of _meeting
together_; a Thing dearly owned and diligently practised by us, as
shall hereafter more appear. [Sidenote: Pray, preach, _and_ sing _in
Spirit._] True it is, Mention is made of the Duties of _Praying_,
_Preaching_, and _Singing_; but what Order or Method should be kept
in so doing, or that presently they should be set about so soon as
the Saints are gathered, there is not one Word to be found: Yea,
these Duties, as shall afterwards be made appear, are always annexed
to the Assistance, Leadings, and Motions of God’s Spirit. Since then
Man in his natural State is thus excluded from acting or moving in
Things _spiritual_, how or what Way shall he exercise this first and
previous Duty of _waiting upon God_ but by _Silence_, and by bringing
that natural Part to _Silence_? [Sidenote: _To _wait on God_, by what
it is performed._] Which is no other Ways but by abstaining from his
own Thoughts and Imaginations, and from all the Self-workings and
Motions of his own Mind, as well in Things materially _good_ as _evil_;
that he being _silent_, God may _speak in him_, and the _good Seed_
may arise. This, though hard to the natural Man, is so answerable to
Reason, and even natural Experience in other Things, that it cannot be
denied. He that cometh to learn of a Master, if he expect to hear his
Master and be instructed by him, must not continually be speaking of
the Matter to be taught, and never be quiet, otherwise how shall his
Master have Time to instruct him? [Sidenote: _A Simile of a Master and
his Scholar._] Yea, though the Scholar were never so earnest to learn
the _Science_, yet would the Master have Reason to reprove him, as
untoward and indocile, if he would always be meddling of himself, and
still speaking, and not wait in Silence patiently to hear his Master
instructing and teaching him, who ought not to open his Mouth until by
his Master he were commanded and allowed so to do. [Sidenote: _Of a
Prince and his Servant._] So also if one were about to attend a great
Prince, he would be thought an impertinent and imprudent Servant, who,
while he ought patiently and readily to wait, that he might answer the
King when he speaks, and have his Eye upon him to observe the least
Motions and Inclinations of his Will, and to do accordingly, would be
still deafening him with Discourse, though it were in Praises of him;
and running to and fro, without any particular and immediate Order, to
do Things that perhaps might be good in themselves, or might have been
commanded at other Times to others. Would the Kings of the Earth accept
of such Servants or Service? [Sidenote: _To wait in Silence._] Since
then we are commanded to _wait upon God diligently_, and in so doing
it is promised that our _Strength shall be renewed_, this _Waiting_
cannot be performed but by a _Silence_ or _Cessation_ of the natural
Part on our Side, since God manifests himself not to the outward Man
or Senses, so much as to the inward, to wit, to the Soul and Spirit.
[Sidenote: _The thinking busy Soul excludes the Voice of God._] If
the Soul be still thinking and working in her own Will, and busily
exercised in her own Imaginations, though the Matters as in themselves
may be _good_ concerning God, yet thereby she incapacitates herself
from discerning the _still, small Voice_ of the Spirit, and so hurts
herself greatly, in that she neglects her chief Business of _waiting
upon the Lord_: Nothing less than if I should busy myself, crying out
and speaking of a Business, while in the mean Time I neglect to hear
one who is quietly whispering into my Ear, and informing me in those
Things which are most needful for me to hear and know concerning that
Business. And since it is the chief Work of a _Christian_ to know the
_natural Will_ in its own proper Motions _crucified_, that God may both
move in the Act and in the Will, the Lord chiefly regards this profound
Subjection and Self-denial. [Sidenote: _Religious Speculations._] For
some Men please themselves as much, and gratify their own sensual
Wills and Humours in high and curious _Speculations_ of _Religion_,
affecting a Name and Reputation that Way, or because those Things by
Custom or otherways are become pleasant and habitual to them, though
not a Whit more regenerated or inwardly sanctified in their Spirits,
[Sidenote: _Sensual Recreations._] as others gratify their Lusts in
_Acts_ of _Sensuality_, and therefore both are alike hurtful to Men,
and sinful in the Sight of God, it being nothing but the mere Fruit
and Effect of Man’s natural and unrenewed Will and Spirit. [Sidenote:
Thoughts _of Death and Hell to keep out _Sin_ are Fig-leaves._]
Yea, should one, as many no Doubt do, from a Sense of Sin, and Fear
of Punishment, seek to terrify themselves from Sin, by multiplying
Thoughts of Death, Hell, and Judgment, and by presenting to their
Imaginations the Happiness and Joys of Heaven, and also by multiplying
Prayers and other religious Performances, as these Things could never
deliver him from one Iniquity, without the secret and inward Power
of God’s Spirit and Grace, so would they signify no more than the
_Fig-leaves_ wherewith _Adam_ thought to cover his _Nakedness_. And
seeing it is only the Product of Man’s own natural Will, proceeding
from a Self-love, and seeking to save himself, and not arising purely
from that _divine Seed_ of _Righteousness_ which is given of God to all
for Grace and Salvation, it is rejected of God, and no Ways acceptable
unto him; since the natural Man, as natural, while he stands in that
State, is, with all his Arts, Parts, and Actings, reprobated by him.
[Sidenote: _Denial of one’s Self._] This great Duty then of waiting
upon God, must needs be exercised in Man’s denying Self, both inwardly
and outwardly, in a still and mere Dependence upon God, in abstracting
from all the Workings, Imaginations, and Speculations of his own Mind,
that being emptied as it were of himself, and so throughly crucified
to the natural Products thereof, he may be fit to receive the Lord,
who will have no Co-partner nor Co-rival of his Glory and Power. And
Man being thus stated, the little Seed of Righteousness which God
hath planted in his Soul, and Christ hath purchased for him, even
the Measure of _Grace_ and _Life_, which is burdened and crucified
by Man’s natural _Thoughts_ and _Imaginations_, receives a Place to
arise, and becometh a holy Birth and Geniture _in_ Man; [Sidenote:
_The holy Birth._] and is that _divine Air_ in and by which Man’s Soul
and Spirit comes to be leavened; and by waiting therein he comes to
be accepted in the Sight of God, to stand in his Presence, hear his
Voice, and observe the Motions of his holy Spirit. And so Man’s Place
is to wait in this; and as hereby there are any Objects presented to
his Mind concerning God, or Things relating to Religion, his Soul
may be exercised in them without Hurt, and to the great Profit both
of himself and others; because those Things have their Rise not from
his own Will, but from God’s Spirit: And therefore as in the Arisings
and Movings of this his Mind is still to be exercised in thinking and
meditating, so also in the more obvious Acts of Preaching and Praying.
[Sidenote: _No _Quakers_ are against a meditating Mind._] And so it
may hence appear we are not against Meditation, as some have sought
falsely to infer from our Doctrine; [Sidenote: _From Nature’s Thoughts
all Errors rise._] but we are against the _Thoughts_ and _Imaginations_
of the natural Man in his own Will, from which all Errors and Heresies
concerning the Christian Religion in the whole World have proceeded.
But if it please God at any Time, when one or more are waiting upon
him, not to present such Objects as give them Occasion to exercise
their Minds in _Thoughts_ and _Imaginations_, but purely to keep
them in this holy Dependence, and as they persist therein, to cause
his secret Refreshment and the pure Incomes of his holy Life to flow
in upon them, then they have good Reason to be content, because by
this, as we know by good and blessed Experience, the Soul is more
strengthened, renewed, and confirmed in the Love of God, and armed
against the Power of Sin, than any Way else; [Sidenote: _The Soul
renewed, _by what?_ The holy Life of God._] this being a Fore-taste of
that real and sensible Enjoyment of God, which the Saints in Heaven
daily possess, which God frequently affords to his Children here for
their Comfort and Encouragement, especially when they are assembled
together to _wait upon him_.

[102] If any object here, _That the Lord’s Prayer is a prescribed Form
of Prayer, and therefore of _Worship_ given by Christ to his Children_:

I answer, _First_, This cannot be objected by any Sort of _Christians_
that I know, because there are none who use not other Prayers, or that
limit their Worship to this. _Secondly_, This was commanded to the
Disciples, while yet weak, before they had received the Dispensation
of the Gospel; not that they should only use it in praying, but that
he might shew them by one Example how that their Prayers ought to be
short, and not like the long Prayers of the Pharisees. And that this
was the Use of it, appears by all their Prayers, which divers Saints
afterwards made use of, whereof the Scripture makes mention; for none
made use of this, neither repeated it, but used other Words, according
as the Thing required, and as the Spirit gave Utterance. _Thirdly_,
That this ought to be so understood, appears from _Rom._ viii. 26. of
which afterwards Mention shall be made at greater Length, where the
Apostle saith, _We know not what we should pray for as we ought, but
the Spirit itself maketh Intercession for us_, &c. But if this Prayer
had been such a prescribed Form of Prayer to the _Church_, that had not
been true, neither had they been ignorant what to pray, nor should they
have needed the Help of the Spirit to teach them.

§. XI. [Sidenote: _Whatever Man does act without the Power of God,
is not accepted._] For there are _two contrary Powers_ or _Spirits_,
to wit, the _Power_ and _Spirit of this World_, in which the Prince
of Darkness bears Rule, and over as many as are acted by it, and
work from it; and the _Power_ or _Spirit of God_, in which God
worketh and beareth Rule, and over as many as act in and from it. So
whatever be the Things that a Man thinketh of, or acteth in, however
_spiritual_ or _religious_ as to the Notion or Form of them, so long
as he acteth and moveth in the natural and corrupt Spirit and Will,
and not from, in, and by the Power of God, he sinneth in all, and is
not accepted of God. For hence both the [103]_Plowing_ and Praying
_of the Wicked is Sin_; as also whatever a Man acts in and from the
Spirit and Power of God, having his Understanding and Will influenced
and moved by it, whether it be Actions _religious_, _civil_, or even
_natural_, he is accepted in so doing in the Sight of God, and is
[104]_blessed in them_. From what is said it doth appear how frivolous
and impertinent their _Objection_ is, that say they _wait upon God in
Praying and Preaching_, since _Waiting_ doth of itself imply a _passive
Dependence_, rather than an _acting_. [Sidenote: _To pray and preach
without the Spirit is Offence to God._] And since it is, and shall yet
be more shewn, that _Preaching_ and _Praying_ without the Spirit is
an Offending of God, not a Waiting upon him, and that _Praying_ and
_Preaching_ by the Spirit pre-supposes necessarily a _silent Waiting_
to feel the Motions and Influence of the Spirit to lead thereunto; and
_Lastly_, that in several of these Places where Praying is commanded,
as _Matt._ xxvi. 41. _Mark_ xiii. 33. _Luke_ xxi. 36. 1 _Peter_ iv. 7.
Watching is specially prefixed as a previous Preparation thereunto; we
do well and certainly conclude, that since _Waiting_ and _Watching_
are so particularly commanded and recommended, and cannot be truly
performed but in this _inward Silence_ of the Mind from Men’s own
Thoughts and Imaginations, this _Silence_ is and must necessarily be a
special and principal Part of _God’s Worship_.

[103] Prov. 21. 4.

[104] Ja. 1. 25.

§. XII. [Sidenote: II.] [Sidenote: _This _silent Waiting_ the Devil
cannot counterfeit._] But _Secondly_, The _Excellency_ of this _silent
Waiting upon God_ doth appear, in that it is impossible for the
_Enemy_, viz. the _Devil_, to counterfeit it, so as for any Soul to be
deceived or deluded by him in the Exercise thereof. Now in all other
Matters he may mix himself with the natural Mind of Man, and so by
_transforming_ himself he may deceive the Soul, by busying it about
Things perhaps innocent in themselves, while yet he keeps them from
beholding the _pure Light of Christ_, and so from knowing distinctly
their Duty, and doing of it. For that envious Spirit of Man’s eternal
Happiness knoweth well how to accommodate himself, and fit his Snares
for all the several Dispositions and Inclinations of Men; if he find
one not fit to be engaged with gross Sins, or worldly Lusts, but
rather averse from them, and religiously inclined, he can fit himself
to beguile such a one, by suffering his Thoughts and Imaginations
to run upon _spiritual Matters_, and so hurry him to work, act, and
meditate in his own Will. For he well knoweth that so long as _Self_
bears Rule, and the _Spirit of God_ is not the principal and chief
Actor, Man is not put out of his Reach; [Sidenote: _Altar, Prayers,
Pulpit, Study, cannot shut the Devil out._] so therefore he can
accompany the _Priest_ to the _Altar_, the _Preacher_ to the _Pulpit_,
the _Zealot_ to his _Prayers_, yea, the _Doctor_ and _Professor of
Divinity_ to his _Study_, and there he can chearfully suffer him
to labour and work among his Books, yea, and help him to find out
and invent subtile Distinctions and Quiddities, by which both his
Mind, and others through him, may be kept from heeding _God’s Light
in the Conscience_, and waiting upon him. There is not any Exercise
whatsoever, wherein he cannot enter, and have a chief Place, so as the
Soul many Times cannot discern it, except in this alone: For he can
only work in and by the natural Man, and his Faculties, by secretly
acting upon his Imaginations and Desires, _&c._ and therefore, when
he (to wit, the natural Man) is silent, there he must also stand. And
therefore when the Soul comes to this _Silence_, and as it were is
brought to Nothingness, as to her own Workings, then the Devil is shut
out; for the _pure Presence of God_ and _Shining_ of his _Light_ he
cannot abide, because so long as a Man is thinking and meditating as of
himself, he cannot be sure, but the Devil is influencing him therein;
but when he comes wholly to be silent, as the _pure Light of God_
shines in upon him, then he is sure that the Devil is shut out; for
beyond the Imaginations he cannot go, which we often find by sensible
Experience. For he that of old is said to have come to the _Gathering
together_ of the _Children of God_, is not wanting to come to our
_Assemblies_. And indeed he can well enter and work in a Meeting, that
is silent only as to Words, either by keeping the Minds in various
Thoughts and Imaginations, or by stupifying them, so as to overwhelm
them with a Spirit of Heaviness and Slothfulness: But when we retire
out of all, and are turned in, both by being _diligent_ and _watchful_
upon the one Hand, and also _silent_ and _retired_ out of all our
Thoughts upon the other, as we abide in this sure Place, we feel
ourselves out of his Reach. Yea, oftentimes the _Power_ and _Glory_ of
God will break forth and appear, just as the bright Sun through many
Clouds and Mists, to the Dispelling of that Power of Darkness; which
will also be sensibly felt, seeking to cloud and darken the Mind, and
wholly to keep it from _purely waiting_ upon God.

§. XIII. [Sidenote: III.] [Sidenote: _The Worship of the_ Quakers _not
stopt or interrupted by Men or Devils._] _Thirdly_, The _Excellency_
of this _Worship_ doth appear, in that it can neither be stopt nor
interrupted by the Malice of Men or Devils, as all others can. Now
Interruptions and Stoppings of Worship may be understood in a twofold
Respect, either as we are hindered from _meeting_, as being outwardly
by Violence separated one from another; or when permitted to _meet
together_, as we are interrupted by the Tumult, Noise, and Confusion
which such as are malicious may use to molest or distract us. Now in
both these Respects, this Worship doth greatly surpass all others: For
how far soever People be separate or hindered from coming together, yet
as every one is inwardly gathered to the Measure of _Life_ in himself,
there is a secret Unity and Fellowship enjoyed, which the Devil and all
his Instruments can never break or hinder. But, _Secondly_, It doth
as well appear, as to those Molestations which occur, when we are met
together, what Advantage this _true_ and _spiritual Worship_ gives us
beyond all others; seeing in Despite of a thousand Interruptions and
Abuses, one of which were sufficient to have stopt all other Sorts of
_Christians_, we have been able, through the Nature of this _Worship_,
to keep it uninterrupted as to God, and also at the same Time to
shew forth an Example of our _Christian Patience_ towards all, even
oftentimes to the Reaching and Convincing of our Opposers. For there
is no Sort of Worship used by others which can subsist (though they
be permitted to meet) unless they be either authorized and protected
by the Magistrate, or defend themselves with the Arm of Flesh: But
we at the same Time exercise Worship towards God, and also patiently
bear the Reproaches and Ignominies which _Christ prophesied_ should be
so incident and frequent to Christians. [Sidenote: _The _Worship_ of
the Papists soon interrupted._] For how can the _Papists_ say their
_Mass_, if there be any there to disturb and interrupt them? Do but
take away the _Mass-book_, the _Chalice_, the _Host_, or the _Priest’s
Garments_, yea, do but spill the _Water_, or the _Wine_, or blow out
the _Candles_ (a Thing quickly done) and the whole Business is marred,
and no Sacrifice can be offered. [Sidenote: _The _Protestants_ the
like, and _Anabaptists.] Take from the _Lutherans_ or _Episcopalians_
their _Liturgy_ or _Common-Prayer-Book_, and no Service can be said.
Remove from the _Calvinists_, _Arminians_, _Socinians_, _Independents_,
or _Anabaptists_, the _Pulpit_, the _Bible_, and the _Hour-glass_, or
make but such a Noise as the Voice of the _Preacher_ cannot be heard,
or disturb him but so before he come, or strip him of his _Bible_ or
his _Books_, and he must be dumb: For they all think it an Heresy to
wait to speak as the Spirit of God giveth Utterance; and thus easily
their whole Worship may be marred. But when People meet together, and
their Worship consisteth not in such outward Acts, and they depend not
upon any one’s Speaking, but merely sit down to wait upon God, and to
be gathered out of all Visibles, and to feel the Lord in Spirit, none
of these Things can hinder them, of which we may say of a Truth, _We
are sensible Witnesses_. [Sidenote: _The Sufferings of the _Quakers_
for their religious Meetings._] For when the _Magistrates_, stirred up
by the Malice and Envy of our Opposers, have used all Means possible
(and yet in vain) to deter us from meeting together, and that openly
and publickly in our own hired Houses for that Purpose, both Death,
Banishments, Imprisonments, Finings, Beatings, Whippings, and other
such devilish Inventions, have proved ineffectual to terrify us from
our _holy Assemblies_. And we having, I say, thus oftentimes purchased
our Liberty to meet, by _deep Sufferings_, our Opposers have then taken
another Way, by turning in upon us the worst and wickedest People,
yea, the very Off-scourings of Men, who by all manner of _inhuman,
beastly_, and _brutish Behaviour_, have sought to provoke us, weary us,
and molest us, but in vain. It would be almost incredible to declare,
and indeed a Shame, that among Men pretending to be _Christians_, it
should be mentioned, what Things of this Kind Men’s Eyes have seen,
and I myself, with others, have shared of in Suffering! There they
have often beaten us, and cast Water and Dirt upon us; there they have
danced, leaped, sung, and spoken all manner of profane and ungodly
Words; offered Violence and shameful Behaviour to grave Women and
Virgins; jeered, mocked and scoffed, asking us, _If the Spirit was
not yet come?_ And much more, which were tedious here to relate: And
all this while we have been seriously and silently sitting together,
and waiting upon the Lord. So that by these Things our inward and
spiritual Fellowship with God, and one with another, in the _pure Life
of Righteousness_, hath not been hindered. But on the contrary, the
Lord knowing our Sufferings and Reproaches for his Testimony’s Sake,
hath caused his Power and Glory more to abound among us, and hath
mightily refreshed us by the Sense of his Love, which hath filled our
Souls; and so much the rather, as we found ourselves gathered into the
_Name of the Lord_, which is the [105]_strong Tower of the Righteous_;
whereby we felt ourselves sheltered from receiving any inward Hurt
through their Malice: And also that he had delivered us from that
vain Name and Profession of _Christianity_, under which our Opposers
were not ashamed to bring forth those bitter and cursed Fruits. Yea,
sometimes in the Midst of this Tumult and Opposition, God would
_powerfully move_ some or other of us by his Spirit, both to testify
of that _Joy_, which notwithstanding their Malice we enjoyed, and
powerfully to declare, in the Evidence and Demonstration of the Spirit,
against their _Folly_ and _Wickedness_; so as the Power of Truth hath
brought them to some Measure of Quietness and Stillness, and stopt the
impetuous Streams of their _Fury_ and _Madness_: [Sidenote: The _Rod_
of _Moses_ divided the _Sea: The Spirit maketh Way through the raging
Waves._] That even as of old _Moses_ by his Rod divided the Waves of
the Red Sea, that the _Israelites_ might pass; so God hath thus by his
_Spirit_ made a Way for us in the Midst of this _raging Wickedness_,
peaceably to enjoy and possess him, and accomplish our _Worship_ to
him: So that sometimes upon such Occasions several of our _Opposers_
and _Interrupters_ have hereby been convinced of the _Truth_, and
gathered from being _Persecutors_ to be _Sufferers_ with us. [Sidenote:
_What brutish Pranks did not that _young Fry_ of the _Clergy_ commit?_]
And let it not be forgotten, but let it be inscribed and abide for a
constant Remembrance of the Thing, that in these beastly and brutish
Pranks, used to molest us in our _spiritual Meetings_, none have been
more busy than the _young Students_ of the _Universities_, who were
learning _Philosophy_ and _Divinity_ (so called) and many of them
preparing themselves for the _Ministry_. Should we commit to Writing
all the _Abominations_ committed in this Respect by the _young Fry_
of the _Clergy_, it would make no small Volume; as the _Churches of
Christ_, gathered into his pure Worship in _Oxford_ and _Cambridge_
in _England_, and _Edinburgh_ and _Aberdeen_ in _Scotland_, where the
_Universities_ are, can well bear Witness.

[105] Prov. 18. 10.

§. XIV. [Sidenote: _How the _Old Covenant-worship_ doth differ from
the_ New.] Moreover, in this we know, that we are Partakers of
the _New Covenant’s Dispensation_, and _Disciples of Christ_ indeed,
sharing with him in that _spiritual Worship_, which is performed in
the _Spirit_ and in _Truth_; because as he was, so are we in this
World. For the _Old Covenant-worship_ had an outward _Glory, Temple_
and _Ceremonies_, and was full of outward _Splendor_ and _Majesty_,
having an outward _Tabernacle_ and _Altar_, beautified with _Gold,
Silver_, and _precious Stones_; and their _Sacrifices_ were confined
to a particular Place, even the outward _Mount Sion_; and those
that prayed, were to pray with their Faces towards that outward
_Temple_: And therefore all this was to be protected by an outward
Arm. Nor could the _Jews_ peaceably have enjoyed it, but when they
were secured from the _Violence_ of their outward _Enemies_: And
therefore when at any Time their _Enemies_ prevailed over them, their
_Glory_ was darkened, and their _Sacrifices_ stopt; and the _Face_ of
their _Worship_ marred: Hence they complain, lament, and bewail the
Destroying of the _Temple_, as a Loss irreparable. [Sidenote: _The
New Covenant-worship is inward._] But _Jesus Christ_, the Author and
Institutor of the _New Covenant-worship_, testifies, that _God_ is
neither to be _worshiped_ in this nor that Place, but in the _Spirit_
and in _Truth_: [106]And forasmuch as his _Kingdom is not of this
World_, neither doth his _Worship_ consist in it, or need either the
_Wisdom_, _Glory_, _Riches_ or _Splendor_ of this World to beautify or
adorn it; nor yet the outward _Power_ or _Arm_ of _Flesh_ to maintain,
uphold, or protect it; but it is and may be performed by those that are
_spiritually-minded_, notwithstanding all the _Opposition_, _Violence_,
and _Malice_ of Men; because being purely _spiritual_, it is out of
the Reach of natural Men to interrupt or obstruct it. Even as _Jesus
Christ_, the Author thereof, did enjoy and possess his _spiritual
Kingdom_, while oppressed, persecuted, and rejected of _Men_; and as,
in despite of the Malice and Rage of the _Devil_, [107]_he spoiled
Principalities and Powers, triumphing over them, and through Death
destroyed him that had the Power of Death, that is, the Devil_; so
also all his Followers both can and do _worship_ him, not only without
the Arm of Flesh to protect them, but even when oppressed. For their
_Worship_ being _spiritual_, is by the Power of the Spirit defended and
maintained; [Sidenote: _Carnal Worships cannot stand without the Arm of
Flesh._] but such _Worships_ as are _carnal_, and consist in _carnal_
and _outward Ceremonies_ and _Observations_, need a carnal and outward
Arm to protect and defend them, else they cannot stand and subsist. And
therefore it appears, that the several _Worships_ of our _Opposers_,
both _Papists_ and _Protestants_, are of this Kind, and not the true
_spiritual_ and _New Covenant-worship_ of _Christ_; because, as hath
been observed, they cannot stand without the Protection or Countenance
of the outward _Magistrate_, neither can be performed, if there be
the least Opposition: For they are not in the Patience of _Jesus_, to
serve and worship him with _Sufferings_, _Ignominies_, _Calumnies_, and
_Reproaches_. And from hence have sprung all those _Wars_, _Fightings_,
and _Bloodshed_ among _Christians_, while each by the Arm of Flesh
endeavoured to defend and protect their own _Way_ and _Worship_: And
from this also sprung up that monstrous Opinion of _Persecution_; of
which we shall speak more at length hereafter.

[106] John 18. 36.

[107] Col. 2. 15.

§. XV. [Sidenote: IV. _True Worship in Spirit established by Christ._]
But _Fourthly_, The Nature of this Worship, which is performed by the
Operation of the _Spirit_, the natural Man being silent, doth appear
from these Words of Christ, _John_ iv. 23, 24. _But the Hour cometh,
and now is, when the true Worshippers shall worship the Father in
Spirit and in Truth: For the Father seeketh such to worship him. God
is a Spirit, and they that worship him, must worship him in Spirit and
in Truth._ This Testimony is the more specially to be observed, for
that it is both the _first_, _chiefest_, and _most ample Testimony_,
which _Christ_ gives us of his _Christian Worship_, as different and
contra-distinguished from that under the _Law_. For first, he sheweth
that the Season is now come, wherein the _Worship must be in Spirit and
in Truth; for the Father seeketh such to worship him_: So then it is
no more a Worship consisting in outward Observations, to be performed
by Man at set _Times_ or _Opportunities_, which he can do in his own
Will, and by his own natural Strength; for else it would not differ
in Matter, but only in some Circumstances from that under the _Law_.
[Sidenote: _The Reason Christ gives for a _Worship_ in _Spirit.]
Next, as for a Reason of this _Worship_, we need not give any other,
and indeed none can give a better than that which _Christ_ giveth,
which I think should be sufficient to satisfy every _Christian_, to
wit, GOD IS A SPIRIT, _and they that worship him, must worship him in
Spirit and in Truth_. As this ought to be received, because it is the
Words of _Christ_, so also it is founded upon so clear a Demonstration
of Reason, as sufficiently evidenceth its _Verity_. For Christ
excellently argues from the _Analogy_ that ought to be betwixt the
_Object_, and the _Worship_ directed thereunto:

[Sidenote: Arg.] _God is a Spirit_:

Therefore _he must be worshipped in_ Spirit.

This is so certain, that it can suffer no Contradiction; yea, and
this Analogy is so necessary to be minded, that under the _Law_, when
God instituted and appointed that ceremonial Worship to the _Jews_,
because that Worship was outward, that there might be an _Analogy_,
he saw it necessary to condescend to them as in a special Manner, to
dwell betwixt the _Cherubims_ within the _Tabernacle_, and afterwards
to make the _Temple_ of _Jerusalem_ in a Sort his Habitation, and
cause something of an _outward Glory_ and _Majesty_ to appear, by
causing Fire from _Heaven_ to consume the _Sacrifices_, and filling
the _Temple_ with a _Cloud_: [Sidenote: _The Glory of the outward
Temple._] Through and by which _Mediums_, visible to the outward Eye,
he manifested himself proportionably to that outward Worship which he
had commanded them to perform. So now under the _New Covenant_, he
seeing meet in his heavenly Wisdom to lead his Children in a Path more
_heavenly_ and _spiritual_, and in a Way more easy and familiar, and
also purposing to disappoint _carnal_ and _outward Observations_, that
his may have an Eye more to an _inward Glory_ and _Kingdom_ than to
an _outward_, he hath given us for an Example hereof the Appearance
of his beloved Son, the Lord Jesus Christ, [Sidenote: _As _Moses_ did
from outward, so _Christ_ delivers us from inward Slavery._] who (as
_Moses_ delivered the _Israelites_ out of their _outward Bondage_,
and by _outwardly destroying_ their Enemies) hath delivered and doth
deliver us by suffering, and dying by the Hands of his _Enemies_;
thereby triumphing over the _Devil_, and his and our inward _Enemies_,
and delivering us therefrom. He hath also instituted an _inward_
and _spiritual Worship_: So that God now tieth not his People to
the _Temple_ of _Jerusalem_, nor yet unto outward _Ceremonies_ and
_Observations_; but taketh the Heart of every _Christian_ for a
_Temple_ to dwell in; and there immediately appeareth, and giveth him
Directions how to serve him in any outward Acts. Since, as Christ
argueth, _God is a Spirit_, he will now be worshipped in the Spirit,
where he reveals himself, and dwelleth with the _contrite in Heart_.
Now, since it is the _Heart of Man_ that now is become the _Temple of
God_, in which he will be worshipped, and no more in particular outward
Temples, (since, as blessed _Stephen_ said, out of the Prophet, to
the professing _Jews_ of old, _The most High dwelleth not in Temples
made with Hands_) as before the _Glory of the Lord_ descended to fill
the outward Temple, it behoved to be purified and cleansed, and all
polluted Stuff removed out of it; yea, and the Place for the Tabernacle
was overlaid with Gold, the most precious and cleanest of Metals; so
also before God be worshipped in the inward Temple of the Heart, it
must also be purged of its own Filth, and all its own Thoughts and
Imaginations, that so it may be fit to receive the Spirit of God,
and to be actuated by it. And doth not this directly lead us to
that _inward Silence_, of which we have spoken, and exactly pointed
out? And further, This Worship must be _in Truth_; intimating, that
this spiritual Worship, thus actuated, is only and properly a true
Worship; as being that which, for the Reasons above observed, cannot be
counterfeited by the Enemy, nor yet performed by the Hypocrite.

§. XVI. And though this _Worship_ be indeed very different from the
divers established invented Worships among _Christians_, and therefore
may seem strange to many, yet hath it been testified of, commended and
practised, by the most pious of all Sorts, in all Ages, as by many
evident Testimonies might be proved. So that from the professing and
practising thereof, the Name of _Mysticks_ hath arisen, as of a certain
Sect, generally commended by all, whose _Writings_ are full both of
the Explanation and of the Commendation of this Sort of _Worship_;
[Sidenote: _A certain Sect of _Mysticks_ among the _Papists_, their
_inward Exercise_. See _Sancta Sophia_, printed_ An. Dom. 1657.] where
they plentifully assert this _inward Introversion_ and _Abstraction of
the Mind_, as they call it, _from all Images and Thoughts_, and the
_Prayer of the Will_: [Sidenote: _The _English Benedictines_ Testimony
for the spiritual Worship, against their Masses and set Devotions._]
Yea, they look upon this as the _Height_ of _Christian Perfection_;
so that some of them, though professed _Papists_, do not doubt to
affirm, _That such as have attained this Method of Worship, or are
aiming at it_, (as in a Book, called _Sancta Sophia_, put out by the
_English Benedictines_, printed at _Doway_, _Anno 1657_. Tract. I.
Sect. 2. Cap. 5.) _need not, nor ought to trouble or busy themselves
with frequent and unnecessary Confessions, with exercising corporal
Labours and Austerities, the using of vocal voluntary Prayers, the
hearing of a Number of Masses, or set Devotions, or Exercises to
Saints, or Prayers for the Dead, or having solicitous and distracting
Cares to gain Indulgences, by going to such and such Churches, or
adjoining one’s Self to Confraternities, or intangling one’s Self with
Vows and Promises; because such Kind of Things hinder the Soul from
observing the Operations of the divine Spirit in it, and from having
Liberty to follow the Spirit whither it would draw her_. And yet who
knows not that in such Kind of Observations the very Substance of the
_Popish Religion_ consisteth? Yet nevertheless, it appears by this,
and many other Passages, which out of their _Mystick Writers_ might
be mentioned, how they look upon this _Worship_ as excelling all
other; and that such as arrived hereunto, had no absolute Need of the
others: Yea, (see the Life of _Balthazar Alvares_, in the same _Sancta
Sophia_, Tract. III. Sect. 1. Cap. 7.) such as tasted of this, quickly
confessed, that the other _Forms_ and _Ceremonies of Worship_ were
useless as to them; neither did they perform them as Things necessary,
but merely for Order or Example’s Sake. And therefore, though some of
them were so overclouded with the common Darkness of their Profession,
yet could they affirm that this _spiritual Worship_ was still to be
retained and sought for, even though it should become necessary to omit
their outward Ceremonies. [Sidenote: Bernard _preferring the_ Spirit
_above_ Popish Orders.] Hence _Bernard_, as in many other Places, so in
his _Epistle_ to _William_, Abbot of the same Order, saith, _Take Heed
to the Rule of God; the Kingdom of God is within you_: And afterwards,
saying, That their outward Orders and Rules should be observed, he
adds; _But otherwise, when it shall happen that one of these two must
be omitted, in such a Case these are much rather to be omitted than
those former: For by how much the Spirit is more excellent and noble
than the Body, by so much are spiritual Exercises more profitable than
corporal_. Is not that then the best of Worships, which the best of
Men in all Ages, and of all Sects, have commended, and which is most
suitable to the Doctrine of Christ? I say, Is not that Worship to be
followed and performed? And so much the rather, as God hath raised a
People to testify for it, and preach it, to their great Refreshment and
Strengthening, in the very Face of the World, and notwithstanding much
Opposition; who do not, as these _Mysticks_, make of it a Mystery, only
to be attained by a few Men or Women in a Cloister; [Sidenote: _Those
_Mysticks_ did confine that Mystery to a Cloister._] or, as their
Mistake was, after wearying themselves with many outward _Ceremonies_
and _Observations_, as if it were the Consequence of such a Labour;
but who in the free Love of God (who respects not Persons, and was
near to hear and reveal himself, as well to _Cornelius_, a Centurion
and a Roman, as to _Simeon_ and _Anna_; and who discovered his Glory
to _Mary_, a poor Handmaid, and to the poor _Shepherds_, rather than
to the _High Priests_ and _devout Proselytes_ among the _Jews_) in
and according to his _free Love_, finding that God is revealing and
establishing this Worship, and making many poor Tradesmen, yea, young
Boys and Girls, Witnesses of it, do intreat and beseech all to lay
aside their own Will-worships, and voluntary Acts, performed in their
own Wills, and by their own mere natural Strength and Power, without
retiring out of their vain Imaginations and Thoughts, or feeling the
_pure Spirit of God_ to move and stir in them; that they may come to
practise this acceptable Worship, which is _in Spirit and in Truth_.
But against this Worship they object.

§. XVII. [Sidenote: Obj. 1.] First, _It seems to be an unprofitable
Exercise for a Man to be doing or thinking nothing; and that one might
be much better employed, either in meditating upon some good Subject,
or otherwise praying to or praising God_.

[Sidenote: _Answ._] I answer; That is not unprofitable, which is of
absolute Necessity before any other Duty can be acceptably performed,
as we have shewn this _Waiting_ to be. Moreover, those have but a
carnal and gross Apprehension of God, and of the Things of his Kingdom,
who imagine that Men please him by their own Workings and Actings:
Whereas, as hath been shewn, the _first Step_ for a Man to fear God,
is to cease from his own Thoughts and Imaginations, and suffer God’s
Spirit to work in him. [Sidenote: _We must cease to do ill, _ere_
we learn to do well._] [108]For we must _cease to do evil_, ere we
_learn to do well_; and this meddling in Things _spiritual_ by Man’s
own natural Understanding, is one of the greatest and most dangerous
Evils that Man is incident to; being that which occasioned our _first
Parents_ Fall, to wit, a Forwardness to desire to know Things, and a
Meddling with them, both without and contrary to the Lord’s Command.

[108] Isa. 1. 16, 17.

[Sidenote: Obj. 2.] [Sidenote: _Set Times and Places for Meetings._]
_Secondly_, Some object, _If your Worship merely consists in inwardly
retiring to the Lord, and feeling of his Spirit arise in you, and then
to do outward Acts as ye are led by it, what need ye have publick
Meetings at set Times and Places, since every one may enjoy this at
Home? Or should not every one stay at Home, until they be particularly
moved to go to such a Place at such a Time; since to meet at set Times
and Places seems to be an outward Observation and Ceremony, contrary to
what ye at other Times assert?_

[Sidenote: _Answ._] I answer, _First_, To meet at set Times and Places
is not any _religious Act_, or Part of _Worship_ in itself; [Sidenote:
_Publick Meetings their Use and Reason asserted._] but only an _outward
Conveniency_, necessary for our seeing one another, so long as we are
clothed with this _outward Tabernacle_: And therefore our _meeting_ at
set Times and Places is not a Part of our _Worship_, but a preparatory
Accommodation of our outward Man, in order to a publick visible
_Worship_; since we set not about the visible Acts of _Worship_ when
we meet together, until we be led thereunto by the _Spirit of God_.
_Secondly_, God hath seen meet, so long as his _Children_ are in this
_World_, to make use of the outward Senses, not only as a Means to
convey _spiritual Life_, as by _Speaking_, _Praying_, _Praising_, &c.
which cannot be done to mutual Edification, but when we hear and see
one another; but also to entertain an outward, visible _Testimony_ for
his Name in the World: He causeth the inward Life (which is also many
Times not conveyed by the _outward Senses_) the more to abound, when
his Children assemble themselves diligently together to wait upon him;
[109]so that as _Iron sharpeneth Iron_, the Seeing of the Faces one
of another, when both are inwardly gathered unto the _Life_, giveth
Occasion for the _Life_ secretly to rise, and pass from _Vessel_ to
_Vessel_. And as many Candles lighted, and put in one Place, do greatly
augment the _Light_, and make it more to shine forth, so when many are
gathered together into the same _Life_, there is more of the Glory of
God, and his Power appears, to the Refreshment of each Individual; for
that he partakes not only of the _Light_ and _Life_ raised in himself,
but in all the rest. And therefore _Christ_ hath particularly promised
a Blessing to such as assemble together in his _Name_, seeing he will
be _in the Midst of them_, Matt. xviii. 20. And the Author to the
_Hebrews_ doth precisely prohibit the Neglect of this Duty, as being
of very dangerous and dreadful Consequence, in these Words; _Heb._ x.
24. [Sidenote: _Assembling of ourselves is not to be neglected._] _And
let us consider one another, to provoke unto Love, and to good Works;
not forsaking the Assembling of ourselves together, as the Manner of
some is;--For if we sin wilfully, after that we have received the
Knowledge of the Truth, there remaineth no more Sacrifice for Sins._
And therefore the Lord hath shewn that he hath a particular Respect
to such as thus assemble themselves together, because that thereby
a publick Testimony for him is upheld in the Earth, and his Name is
thereby glorified; and therefore such as are right in their _Spirits_,
are naturally drawn to keep the _Meetings_ of _God’s People_, and never
want a _spiritual Influence_ to lead them thereunto: And if any do it
in a mere customary Way, they will no Doubt suffer Condemnation for it.
Yet cannot the Appointing of Places and Times be accounted a _Ceremony_
and _Observation_, done in Man’s _Will_, in the _Worship_ of _God_,
seeing none can say that it is an _Act_ of _Worship_, but only a mere
_Presenting_ of our _Persons_ in order to it, as is abovesaid. Which
that it was practised by the _Primitive Church_ and _Saints_, all our
Adversaries do acknowledge.

[109] Prov. 27. 17.

[Sidenote: Obj. 3.] _Lastly_, Some object, _That this Manner of Worship
in Silence is not to be found in all the Scripture_:

[Sidenote: _Answ._] I answer; We make not Silence to be the sole
Matter of our _Worship_; since, as I have said above, there are many
_Meetings_, which are seldom altogether silent; some or other are
still moved either to _preach_, _pray_, or _praise_: [Sidenote: _In
waiting for the Spirit’s Guidance, Silence is supposed._] And so in
this our _Meetings_ cannot be but like the _Meetings_ of the _Primitive
Churches_ recorded in Scripture, since our _Adversaries_ confess that
they did _preach_ and _pray_ by the _Spirit_. And then what Absurdity
is it to suppose, that at some Times the _Spirit_ did not move them to
these outward _Acts_, and that then they were silent? Since we may well
conclude they did not speak until they were moved; and so no Doubt had
sometimes Silence. _Acts_ ii. 1. before the Spirit came upon them, it
is said,--_They were all with one Accord in one Place_; and then it
is said, _The Spirit suddenly came upon them_; but no Mention is made
of any one speaking at that Time; and I would willingly know what
_Absurdity_ our _Adversaries_ can infer, should we conclude they were a
While silent?

[Sidenote: Inst.] But if it be urged, That a whole _silent Meeting
cannot be found in Scripture_;

[Sidenote: _Answ._] I answer; Supposing such a Thing were not recorded,
it will not therefore follow that it is not lawful; since it naturally
followeth from other _Scripture Precepts_, as we have proved this
doth. [Sidenote: Silent Meetings_ are proved from _Scripture_ and
_Reason.] For seeing the _Scripture_ commands to meet together, and
when met, the Scripture prohibits _Prayers_ or _Preachings_, but as
the Spirit moveth thereunto; if People meet together, and the Spirit
move not to such Acts, it will necessarily follow that they must be
silent. But further, there might have been many such Things among
the _Saints_ of _old_, though not recorded in _Scripture_; and yet
we have enough in _Scripture_, signifying that such Things were. For
_Job_ sat silent _seven Days with his Friends together_; here was a
long _silent Meeting_: See also _Ezra_ ix. 4. and _Ezekiel_ xiv. 1.
and xx. 1. Thus having shewn the Excellency of this _Worship_, proving
it from _Scripture_ and _Reason_, and answered the Objections which
are commonly made against it, which, though it may suffice to the
Explanation and Proof of our _Proposition_, yet I shall add something
more particularly of _Preaching_, _Praying_, and _Singing_, and so
Proceed to the following _Proposition_.

§. XVIII. [Sidenote: I.] _Preaching_, as it is used both among
_Papists_ and _Protestants_, is for one Man to take some Place or
Verse of Scripture, and thereon _speak_ for an Hour or two, [Sidenote:
_What Preaching is with the_ Protestants _and_ Papists.] what he hath
studied and premeditated in his Closet, and gathered together from his
own Inventions, or from the Writings and Observations of others; and
then having got it by Heart, (as a _School-boy_ doth his _Lesson_)
he brings it forth, and repeats it before the People: [Sidenote: _A
studied Talk an Hour or two_.] And how much the more fertile and
strong a Man’s _Invention_ is, and the more industrious and laborious
he is in collecting such _Observations_, and can utter them with the
_Excellency_ of _Speech_ and _human Eloquence_, so much the more is he
accounted an able and excellent Preacher.

[Sidenote: _True _Preaching_ by the _Spirit.] To this we oppose,
that when the _Saints_ are met together, and every one gathered to
the _Gift_ and _Grace_ of God in themselves, he that ministereth,
being actuated thereunto by the Arising of the _Grace_ in himself,
ought to speak forth what the Spirit of God furnisheth him with;
not minding the _Eloquence_ and _Wisdom_ of _Words_, but the
_Demonstration_ of the _Spirit_ and of _Power_: And that either in
the Interpreting some Part of _Scripture_, in case the Spirit, which
is the good Remembrancer, lead him so to do, or otherwise _Words_ of
_Exhortation_, _Advice_, _Reproof_, and _Instruction_, or the Sense
of some _spiritual Experiences_: All which will still be agreeable to
the _Scripture_, though perhaps not relative to, nor founded upon any
particular _Chapter_ or _Verse_, as a _Text_. Now let us examine and
consider which of these two Sorts of Preaching is most agreeable to the
_Precepts_ of _Christ_ and his _Apostles_, and the _Primitive Church_,
recorded in Scripture? For, _First_, as to their _Preaching_ upon a
_Text_, if it were not merely customary or premeditated, but done by
the immediate Motion of the _Spirit_, we should not blame it; but to
do it as they do, there is neither _Precept_ nor _Practice_, that ever
I could observe, in the _New Testament_, as a Part of the _instituted
Worship_ thereof.

[Sidenote: Object.] But they _allege_, _That Christ took the Book of_
Isaiah, _and read out of it, and spake therefrom_; _and that_ Peter
_preached from a Sentence of the Prophet_ Joel.

[Sidenote: _Answ._] [Sidenote: 1. Christ_’s and_ Peter_’s Speaking was
not by Premeditation._] I _answer_, That _Christ_ and _Peter_ did it
not but as immediately actuated and moved thereunto by the Spirit of
God, and that without Premeditation, which I suppose our Adversaries
will not deny; in which Case we willingly approve of it. But what
is this to their customary conned Way, without either waiting for
or expecting the Movings or Leadings of the Spirit? Moreover, that
neither _Christ_ nor _Peter_ did it as a settled Custom or Form, to be
constantly practised by all the Ministers of the Church, appears, in
that most of all the Sermons recorded of _Christ_ and his _Apostles_
in Scripture were without this, as appears from _Christ_’s Sermon upon
the Mount, _Matt._ v. 1. &c. _Mark_ iv. 1. _&c._ and _Paul_’s Preaching
to the _Athenians_, and to the _Jews_, &c. As then it appears that
this Method of Preaching is not grounded upon any Scripture Precept,
so the Nature of it is contrary to the Preaching of Christ under the
_New Covenant_, as expressed and recommended in Scripture; for Christ,
in sending forth his Disciples, expresly mentioneth, that they are
not to speak _of_ or _from_ themselves, or to forecast beforehand,
but that which the _Spirit in the same Hour shall teach them_, as
is particularly mentioned in the three Evangelists, _Matt._ x. 20.
_Mark_ xiii. 11. _Luke_ xii. 12. Now if _Christ_ gave this Order to
his Disciples before he departed from them, as that which they were
to practise during his Abode outwardly with them, much more were they
to do it after his Departure, since then they were more especially to
receive the Spirit, _to lead them in all Things_, and to _bring all
Things to their Remembrance_, John xiv. 26. And if they were to do so
when they appeared before the Magistrates and Princes of the Earth,
much more in the Worship of God, when they stand specially before him;
seeing, as is above shewn, his Worship is to be performed in Spirit;
and therefore after their Receiving of the _Holy Ghost_ it is said,
_Acts_ ii. 4. _They spake as the Spirit gave them Utterance_, not
what they had studied and gathered from Books in their Closets in a
premeditated Way.

[Sidenote: Franciscus Lambertus_’s Testimony against the_ Priests
_studied Inventions and Figments._] _Franciscus Lambertus_, before
cited, speaketh well and sheweth their Hypocrisy, _Tract._ 5. of
_Prophecy_, Chap. 3. saying, “Where are they now, that glory in their
Inventions, who say, A fine Invention! A fine Invention! This they call
Invention, which themselves have made up; but what have the Faithful
to do with such Kind of Inventions? It is not Figments, nor yet
Inventions, that we will have, but Things that are solid, invincible,
eternal, and heavenly; not which Men have invented, but which God hath
revealed: For if we believe the Scriptures, our Invention profiteth
nothing, but to provoke God to our Ruin.” And afterwards, “Beware,
(saith he) that thou determine not precisely to speak what before thou
hast meditated, whatsoever it be; for though it be lawful to determine
the Text which thou art to expound, yet not at all the Interpretation;
lest if thou so dost, thou take from the Holy Spirit that which is his,
to wit, to direct thy Speech, that thou mayest prophesy in the Name of
the Lord, void of all Learning, Meditation, and Experience, and as if
thou hadst studied nothing at all, committing thy Heart, thy Tongue,
and thyself wholly unto his Spirit, and trusting nothing to thy former
Studying or Meditation; but saying with thyself, in great Confidence
of the divine Promise, _The Lord will give a Word with much Power unto
those that preach the Gospel_. But above all Things be careful thou
follow not the Manner of _Hypocrites_, who have written almost Word
for Word what they are to say, as if they were to repeat some Verses
upon a Theatre, having learned all their Preaching as they do that act
_Tragedies_. And afterwards, when they are in the Place of Prophesying,
pray the Lord to direct their Tongue; but in the mean Time, shutting
up the Way of the Holy Spirit, they determine to say nothing but what
they have written. O unhappy Kind of _Prophets_, yea, and truly cursed,
which depend not upon God’s Spirit, but upon their own Writings or
Meditation! Why prayest thou to the Lord, thou false Prophet, to give
thee his Holy Spirit, by which thou mayest speak Things profitable, and
yet thou repellest the Spirit? Why preferrest thou thy Meditation or
Study to the Spirit of God? Otherwise why committest thou not thyself
to the Spirit?”

§. XIX. [Sidenote: _2. The Words Man’s Wisdom brings beget not Faith._]
_Secondly_, This Manner of Preaching as used by them (considering
that they also affirm, _That it may be and often is performed by Men
who are wicked, or void of true Grace_) cannot only not edify the
Church, beget or nourish true Faith, but is destructive to it, being
directly contrary to the Nature of the _Christian_ and _Apostolick
Ministry_ mentioned in the Scriptures: For the _Apostle preached the
Gospel not in the Wisdom of Words, lest the Cross of Christ should be
of none Effect_, 1 Cor. i. 17. But this Preaching, not being done by
the Actings and Moving of God’s Spirit, but by Man’s Invention and
Eloquence, in his own Will, and through his natural and acquired Parts
and Learning, is in the Wisdom of Words, and therefore the _Cross of
Christ_ is thereby made of none Effect. The Apostles _Speech_ and
_Preaching_ was not _with enticing Words of Man’s Wisdom, but in
Demonstration of the Spirit and of Power_, that the Faith of their
Hearers _should not stand in the Wisdom of Men, but in the Power of
God_, 1 Cor. ii. 3, 4, 5. But this Preaching having nothing of the
Spirit and Power in it, both the Preachers and Hearers confessing
they wait for no such Thing, nor yet are oftentimes sensible of it,
must needs stand in the enticing Words of Man’s Wisdom, since it is
by the mere Wisdom of Man it is sought after, and the mere Strength
of Man’s Eloquence and enticing Words it is uttered; and therefore no
Wonder if the Faith of such as hear and depend upon such Preachers and
Preachings stand in the Wisdom of Men, and not in the Power of God.
The Apostles declared, That they _spake not in the Words which Man’s
Wisdom teacheth, but which the Holy Ghost teacheth_, 1 Cor. ii. 13. But
these Preachers confess that they are Strangers to the _Holy Ghost_,
his Motions and Operations, neither do they wait to feel them, and
therefore they speak in the Words which their own natural Wisdom and
Learning teach them, mixing them in, and adding them to, such Words as
they steal out of the Scripture and other Books, and therefore speak
not what the _Holy Ghost_ teacheth.

[Sidenote: 3. _The Church’s Method was to speak by _Revelation.]
_Thirdly_, This is contrary to the Method and Order of the _Primitive
Church_ mentioned by the Apostle, 1 _Cor._ xiv. 30, _&c._ where in
_Preaching_ every one is to wait for his _Revelation_, and to give
Place one unto another, according as Things are revealed; but here
there is no waiting for a _Revelation_, but the Preacher must speak,
and not that which is revealed unto him, but what he hath prepared and
premeditated beforehand.

[Sidenote: 4. _The Spirit is shut out by Priests from being the
Teacher._] _Lastly_, By this Kind of Preaching the Spirit of God,
which should be the chief Instructor and Teacher of God’s People, and
whose Influence is that only which makes all Preaching effectual and
beneficial for the edifying of Souls, is shut out, and Man’s natural
Wisdom, Learning, and Parts set up and exalted; which no Doubt is
a great and chief Reason why the Preaching among the Generality of
_Christians_ is so unfruitful and unsuccessful. Yea, according to this
Doctrine, the Devil may preach, and ought to be heard also, seeing
he both knows the Truth, and hath as much Eloquence as any. But what
avails Excellency of Speech, if the Demonstration and Power of the
Spirit be wanting, which toucheth the Conscience? We see that when
the Devil confessed to the Truth, yet Christ would have none of his
Testimony. And as these pregnant Testimonies of the Scripture do prove
this Part of Preaching to be contrary to the Doctrine of Christ, so
do they also prove _that of ours_ before affirmed to be conformable

§. XX. [Sidenote: Object.] But if any object after this Manner, _Have
not many been benefited, yea, and both converted and edified by the
Ministry of such as have premeditated their Preaching? Yea, and hath
not the Spirit often concurred by its divine Influence with Preachings
thus premeditated, so as they have been powerfully borne in upon the
Souls of the Hearers to their Advantage?_

[Sidenote: _Answ._] I _answer_, Though that be granted, which I
shall not deny, it will not infer that the Thing was good in itself,
more than because Paul was met with by Christ to the converting of
his Soul riding to _Damascus_ to persecute the Saints, that he did
well in so doing. [Sidenote: Paul _persecuting was converted, is
therefore persecuting good?_] Neither particular Actions, nor yet whole
Congregations, as we above observed, are to be measured by the Acts
of God’s Condescension in Times of Ignorance. But besides, it hath
oftentimes fallen out, that God, having a Regard to the Simplicity
and Integrity either of the Preacher or Hearers, hath fallen in upon
the Heart of a Preacher by his Power and holy Influence, and thereby
hath led him to speak Things that were not in his premeditated
Discourse, and which perhaps he never thought on before; and those
passing Ejaculations and unpremeditated but living Exhortations, have
proved more beneficial and refreshing both to Preacher and Hearers
than all their premeditated Sermons. But all that will not allow them
to continue in these Things which in themselves are not approved,
but contrary to the Practice of the Apostles, when God is raising
up a People to serve him, according to the _primitive Purity_ and
_Spirituality_; yea, such Acts of _God’s Condescension_, in Times of
Darkness and Ignorance, should engage all more and more to follow him,
according as he reveals his most _perfect_ and _spiritual Way_.

§. XXI. [Sidenote: II.] Having hitherto spoken of _Preaching_, now it
is fit to speak of _Praying_, concerning which the like Controversy
ariseth. [Sidenote: _Of_ Prayer, _how the outward is distinguished
from the inward_.] Our Adversaries, whose _Religion_ is all for the
most Part _Outside_, and such whose Acts are the mere Product of Man’s
natural Will and Abilities, as they can preach, so can they pray
when they please, and therefore have their set particular Prayers. I
meddle not with the Controversies among themselves concerning this,
some of them being for _set Prayers_, as a _Liturgy_, others for such
as are conceived _extempore_; It suffices me that all of them agree
in this, That the Motions and Influence of the Spirit of God are not
necessary to be previous thereunto; [Sidenote: _The Priests set Times
to preach and pray, deny the Spirit._] and therefore they have _set
Times_ in their publick Worship, as before and after Preaching, and in
their private Devotion, as Morning and Evening, and before and after
Meat, and other such Occasions, at which they precisely set about the
performing of their Prayers, by speaking Words to God, whether they
feel any Motion or Influence of the Spirit or not; so that some of
the chiefest have confessed that they have thus prayed without the
Motions or Assistance of the Spirit, acknowledging that they sinned
in so doing; yet they said they looked upon it as their Duty to do
so, though to pray without the Spirit be Sin. We freely confess that
_Prayer_ is both very profitable, and a necessary Duty commanded, and
fit to be practised frequently by all _Christians_; but as we can do
nothing without Christ, so neither can we pray without the Concurrence
and Assistance of his Spirit. But that the _State_ of the _Controversy_
may be the better understood, let it be considered, _First_, that
_Prayer_ is twofold, _inward_ and _outward_. [Sidenote: _What inward
Prayer is._] _Inward Prayer_ is that _secret Turning of the Mind
towards God_, whereby, being secretly touched and awakened by the
_Light of Christ_ in the Conscience, and so bowed down under the Sense
of its Iniquities, Unworthiness, and Misery, it looks up to God, and
joining with the secret Shinings of the _Seed of God_, it breathes
towards him, and is constantly breathing forth some secret Desires and
Aspirations towards him. It is in this Sense that we are so frequently
in Scripture commanded to _pray continually_, Luke xviii. 1. 1 Thess.
v. 17. Ephes. vi. 18. Luke xxi. 36. which cannot be understood of
_outward Prayer_, because it were impossible that Men should be always
upon their Knees, expressing _Words_ of _Prayer_; and this would hinder
them from the Exercise of those _Duties_ no less positively commanded.
[Sidenote: _What outward Prayer is._] _Outward Prayer_ is, when as the
Spirit, being thus in the Exercise of inward Retirement, and feeling
the Breathing of the Spirit of God to arise powerfully in the Soul,
receives Strength and Liberty by a superadded Motion and Influence
of the _Spirit_ to bring forth either audible _Sight_, _Groans_, or
_Words_, and that either in publick Assemblies, or in private, or at
Meat, _&c._

[Sidenote: _Inward Prayer necessary at all Times._] As then _inward
Prayer is necessary at all Times_, so, so long as the Day of every
Man’s _Visitation_ lasteth, he never wants some Influence, less or
more, for the Practice of it; because he no sooner retires his Mind,
and considers himself in God’s Presence, but he finds himself in the
Practice of it.

[Sidenote: _Outward Prayer doth require a superadded Influence._] The
_outward Exercise of Prayer_, as needing a greater and superadded
Influence and Motion of the Spirit, as it cannot be continually
practised, so neither can it be so readily, so as to be effectually
performed, until his Mind be some Time acquainted with the _Inward_;
therefore such as are diligent and watchful in their Minds, and much
retired in the Exercise of this _inward Prayer_, are more capable
to be frequent in the Use of the _Outward_, because that this holy
Influence doth more constantly attend them, and they being better
acquainted with, and accustomed to, the Motions of _God’s Spirit_, can
easily perceive and discern them. And indeed, as such who are most
diligent have a near Access to God, and he taketh most Delight to draw
them by his _Spirit_ to approach and call upon him, so when many are
gathered together in this _watchful Mind_, God doth frequently pour
forth the _Spirit_ of _Prayer_ among them and stir them thereunto, to
the edifying and building up of one another in _Love_. But because
this _outward Prayer_ depends upon the _inward_, as that which must
follow it, and cannot be acceptably performed but as attended with a
superadded Influence and Motion of the _Spirit_, [Sidenote: _We cannot
fix set Times to speak and pray_.] therefore we cannot prefix set
Times to _pray outwardly_, so as to lay a Necessity to speak Words
at such and such Times, whether we feel this heavenly Influence and
Assistance or no; for that we judge were a Tempting of God, and a
Coming before him without due _Preparation_. We think it fit for us to
present ourselves before him by this _inward Retirement_ of the _Mind_,
and so to proceed further, as his Spirit shall help us and draw us
thereunto; and we find that the Lord accepts of this, yea, and seeth
meet sometimes to exercise us in this silent Place for the Trial of our
_Patience_, without allowing us to speak further, that he may teach
us not to rely upon outward _Performances_, or satisfy ourselves, as
too many do, with the Saying of our _Prayers_; and that our Dependence
upon him may be the more firm and constant, to wait for the Holding
out of his _Sceptre_, and for his Allowance to draw near unto him,
with greater Freedom and Enlargement of _Spirit_ upon our _Hearts_
towards him. Yet nevertheless we do not deny but sometimes God, upon
particular Occasions, very suddenly, yea, upon the very first turning
in of the _Mind_, may give Power and Liberty to bring forth Words
or Acts of _outward Prayer_, so as the Soul can scarce discern any
previous Motion, but the Influence and Bringing forth thereof may be as
it were _simul & semel_: Nevertheless that Saying of _Bernard_ is true,
that _all Prayer is lukewarm, which hath not an Inspiration preceding
it_. Though we affirm that none ought to go about _Prayer_ without
this Motion, yet we do not deny but such _sin_ as neglect _Prayer_;
[Sidenote: _Such sin as are neglecting Prayer._] but their _Sin_ is in
that they come not to that Place where they may feel that which would
lead them thereunto. And therefore we question not but many, through
Neglect of this _inward Watchfulness_ and _Retiredness_ of _Mind_,
miss many precious Opportunities to _pray_, and thereby are guilty in
the Sight of God; yet would they _sin_ if they should set about the
Act until they first felt the Influence. [Sidenote: _A forward and
a careless Servant answers not his Duty_.] For as he grosly offends
his _Master_ that lieth in his Bed and sleeps, and neglects to do his
_Master’s Business_; yet if such a one should suddenly get up, without
putting on his Clothes, or taking along with him those necessary
_Tools_ and _Instruments_, without which he could not possibly work,
and should forwardly fall a doing to no Purpose, he would be so far
thereby from repairing his former _Fault_, that he would justly incur a
new Censure: And as one that is careless and otherways busied may miss
to hear one speaking unto him, or even not hear the Bell of a Clock,
though striking hard-by him, so may many, through Negligence, miss to
hear God oftentimes calling upon them, and giving them Access to pray
unto him; yet will not that allow them, without his Liberty, in their
own Wills to fall to Work.

And _Lastly_, Though this be the only true and proper Method of Prayer,
as that which is alone acceptable to God, [Sidenote: _In Times of
Darkness God did often hear their Prayers._] yet shall we not deny but
he oftentimes answered the _Prayers_ and concurred with the _Desires_
of some, especially in Times of _Darkness_, who have greatly erred
herein; so that some that have sat down in _formal Prayer_, though
far wrong in the Matter as well as Manner, without the Assistance
or Influence of _God’s Spirit_, yet have found him to take Occasion
therethrough to break in upon their Souls, and wonderfully tender and
refresh them; yet as in _Preaching_, and elsewhere hath afore been
observed, that will not prove any such _Practices_, or be a just Let
to hinder any from coming to _practise_ that _pure_, _spiritual_, and
_acceptable Prayer_, which God is again restoring and leading his
People into, out of all _Superstitions_ and mere _empty Formalities_.
The State of the _Controversy_, and our _Sense_ thereof, being thus
clearly stated, will both obviate many _Objections_, and make the
Answer to others more brief and easy. [Sidenote: First, _Spiritual
Prayer proved from_ Scripture.] I shall first prove this _spiritual
Prayer_ by some short Considerations from _Scripture_, and then answer
the Objections of our Opposers, which will also serve to refute their
Method and Manner thereof.

§. XXII. [Sidenote: I.] [Sidenote: _God’s Spirit must be felt to move
the Mind to Prayer_.] And _First_, That there is a Necessity of this
_inward Retirement_ of the _Mind_ as previous to _Prayer_, that the
_Spirit_ may be felt to draw thereunto, appears, for that in most
of those Places where _Prayer_ is commanded, _Watching_ is prefixed
thereunto, as necessary to go before, as _Matt._ xxiv. 42. _Mark_
xiii. 33. and xiv. 38. _Luke_ xxi. 36. from which it is evident that
this _Watching_ was to go before Prayer. Now to what End is this
_Watching_, or what is it, but a Waiting to feel _God’s Spirit_ to draw
unto _Prayer_, that so it may be done acceptably? For since we are to
[110]_pray always in the Spirit_, and cannot pray of ourselves without
it acceptably, this Watching must be for this End recommended to us, as
preceding _Prayer_, that we may watch and wait for the seasonable Time
to _pray_, which is when the Spirit moves thereunto.

[110] Ephes. 6. 18.

[Sidenote: II. _We know not how to _pray_ but as the Spirit helps._]
_Secondly_, This Necessity of the Spirit’s Moving and Concurrence
appears abundantly from that of the Apostle _Paul_, Rom. viii. 26,
27. _Likewise the Spirit also helpeth our Infirmities: For we know
not what we should pray for as we ought; but the Spirit itself maketh
Intercession for us with Groanings which cannot be uttered. And he that
searcheth the Hearts knoweth what is the Mind of the Spirit, because he
maketh Intercession for the Saints according to the Will of God._ Which
_first_ holds forth the Incapacity of Men as of themselves to pray
or call upon God in their own Wills, even such as have received the
_Faith_ of _Christ_, and are in Measure sanctified by it, as was the
Church of _Rome_, to whom the Apostle then wrote. _Secondly_, It holds
forth that which can only help and assist Men to pray, to wit, the
Spirit, as that without which they cannot do it acceptably to God, nor
beneficially to their own Souls. _Thirdly_, The Manner and Way of the
Spirit’s Intercession, _with Sighs and Groans which are unutterable_.
And _Fourthly_, That God receiveth graciously the Prayers of such as
are presented and offered unto himself by the Spirit, _knowing it to
be according to his Will_. Now it cannot be conceived but this Order of
Prayer thus asserted by the Apostle is most consistent with those other
Testimonies of Scripture, commending and recommending to us the Use of
Prayer. From which I thus argue,

[Sidenote: Arg.] _If any Man know not how to pray, _neither_ can do it
without the Help of the Spirit, then it is to no Purpose for him, but
altogether unprofitable_, to pray without it:

_But the_ First _is true: Therefore also the_ Last.

[Sidenote: III.] [Sidenote: _Pray always in the Spirit, and Watching
thereunto._] _Thirdly_, This Necessity of the Spirit to true Prayer
appears from _Ephes._ vi. 18. and _Jude_ 20. where the Apostle commands
_to pray always in the Spirit, and Watching thereunto_; which is as
much as if he had said, that we were never to pray without the Spirit,
or Watching thereunto. And _Jude_ sheweth that such Prayers as are _in
the Holy Ghost_ only, tend to the _Building up of ourselves in our most
holy Faith_.

[Sidenote: IV.] [Sidenote: _Man cannot call _Christ Lord_ but by
the Holy Ghost._] _Fourthly_, The Apostle _Paul_ saith expresly, 1
_Cor._ xii. 3. _That no Man can say that Jesus is the Lord but by the
Holy Ghost_: If then Jesus cannot be thus rightly named but by the
_Holy Ghost_, far less can he be acceptably called upon. Hence the
same Apostle declares, 1 _Cor._ xiv. 15. that he _will pray with the
Spirit_, &c. A clear Evidence that it was none of his Method to pray
without it.

[Sidenote: V.] [Sidenote: _God will not hear the Prayers of the
Wicked._] But _Fifthly_, All _Prayer_ without the Spirit is
_Abomination_, such as are the _Prayers of the Wicked_, Prov. xxviii.
9. And the _Confidence_ that the Saints have that _God will hear them_
is, if they _ask any Thing according to his Will_, 1 John v. 14. So
if the Prayer be not according to his Will, there is no Ground of
Confidence that he will hear. Now our Adversaries will acknowledge that
Prayers without the Spirit are not according to the Will of God, and
therefore such as pray without it have no Ground to expect an Answer:
For indeed to bid a Man _pray_ without the _Spirit_ is all one as to
bid one _see_ without _Eyes_, _work_ without _Hands_, or _go_ without
_Feet_. And to desire a Man to fall to _Prayer_ ere the Spirit in some
Measure less or more move him thereunto, is to desire a Man to see
before he opens his Eyes, or to walk before he rise up, or to work
with his Hands before he moves them.

§. XXIII. [Sidenote: VI.] [Sidenote: _All Sacrifice is Sin, not offered
by the Spirit._] But _Lastly_, From this false Opinion of Praying
without the Spirit, and not judging it necessary to be waited for, as
that which may be felt to move us thereunto, hath proceeded all the
Superstition and Idolatry that is among those called _Christians_,
and those many Abominations wherewith the Lord is _provoked_, and
his _Spirit grieved_; so that many deceive themselves now, as the
_Jews_ did of old, thinking it sufficient if they pay their daily
Sacrifices, and offer their customary Oblations; from thence thinking
all is well, and creating a false Peace to themselves, as the _Whore_
in the _Proverbs_, because they have offered up their _Sacrifices_ of
Morning and Evening Prayers. And therefore it is manifest that their
constant Use of these Things doth not a Whit influence their Lives and
Conversations, but they remain for the most Part as bad as ever. Yea,
it is frequent both among _Papists_ and _Protestants_, for them to leap
as it were out of their vain, light, and profane Conversations at their
_set Hours_ and _Seasons_, and fall to their customary Devotion; and
then, when it is scarce finished, and the Words to God scarce out, the
former profane Talk comes after it; so that the same wicked profane
Spirit of this World actuates them in both. If there be any such Thing
as _vain Oblations_, or _Prayers that are Abomination_, which God
heareth not (as is certain there are, and the Scripture testifies,
_Isa._ lxvi. 3. _Jer._ xiv. 12.) certainly such _Prayers_ as are acted
in Man’s Will, and by his own Strength, without God’s Spirit, must be
of that Number.

§. XXIV. [Sidenote: _Concerning _Joining in Prayer_ with others._] Let
this suffice for Proof. I shall now proceed to answer their Objections,
when I have said something concerning _joining in Prayer with others_.
Those that pray together with one Accord use not only to concur in
their Spirits, but also in the Gesture of their Body; which we also
willingly approve of. It becometh those who approach before God to
_pray_, that they do it with _bowed Knees_, and with their _Heads
uncovered_, which is our Practice.

[Sidenote: Obj. 1.] But here ariseth a Controversy, _Whether it be
lawful to join with others by those external Signs of Reverence, albeit
not in Heart, who pray formally, not waiting for the Motion of the
Spirit, nor judging it necessary_.

[Sidenote: _Answ._] We answer, Not at all; and for our Testimony in
this Thing we have suffered not a little. [Sidenote: _The Reason
why we cannot _join in Prayer.] For when it hath fallen out, that
either accidentally, or to witness against their Worship, we have been
present during the same, and have not found it lawful for us to _bow_
with them thereunto, they have often persecuted us, not only with
Reproaches, but also with Strokes and cruel Beatings. For this Cause
they used to accuse us of Pride, Profanity, and Madness, as if we had
no Respect or Reverence to the _Worship of God_, and as if we judged
none could pray, or were heard of God, but ourselves. Unto all which,
and many more Reproaches of this Kind, we answer briefly and modestly,
That it sufficeth us that we are found so doing, neither through
Pride, nor Madness, nor Profanity, but merely lest we should hurt our
_Consciences_; the Reason of which is plain and evident: For since our
_Principle_ and _Doctrine_ oblige us to believe that the _Prayers_ of
those who themselves confess they are _not actuated by the Spirit_ are
_Abominations_, how can we with a safe Conscience join with them?

[Sidenote: Obj. 2.] If they urge, _That this is the Height of
Uncharitableness and Arrogancy, as if we judged ourselves always to
pray by the Spirit’s Motion, but they never; as if we were never
deceived by praying without the Motions of the Spirit, and that they
were never actuated by it, seeing albeit they judge not the Motion of
the Spirit always necessary, they confess nevertheless that it is very
profitable and comfortable, and they feel it often influencing them;
which that it sometimes falls out we cannot deny_.

[Sidenote: _Answ._] To all which I answer distinctly, If it were
their known and avowed _Doctrine_ not to pray without the Motion of
the Spirit, and that, seriously holding thereunto, they did not bind
themselves to pray at certain _prescribed Times_ precisely, at which
Times they determine to pray, though without the Spirit, then indeed
we might be accused of Uncharitableness and Pride, if we never
joined with them; and if they so taught and practised, I doubt not
but it would be lawful for us so to do, unless there should appear
some manifest and evident Hypocrisy and Delusion. [Sidenote: _Shall
we confirm the _Hypocrites_ when praying?_] But seeing they confess
that they _pray without the Spirit_, and seeing God hath persuaded us
that such Prayers are _abominable_, how can we with a safe Conscience
join with an _Abomination_? That God sometimes condescends to them,
we do not deny; although now, when the _spiritual Worship_ is openly
proclaimed, and all are invited unto it, the Case is otherwise than
in those old Times of Apostasy and Darkness; and therefore, albeit
any should begin to pray in our Presence, not expecting the Motion
of the Spirit; yet if it manifestly appear that God in Condescension
did concur with such a one, then according to God’s Will we should
not refuse to join also; but this is rare, lest thence they should be
confirmed in their false Principle. And although this seems hard in our
Profession, nevertheless it is so confirmed by the Authority both of
Scripture and right Reason, that many convinced thereof have embraced
this Part before other _Truths_, which were easier, and, as they seemed
to some, clearer. Among whom is memorable of late Years _Alexander
Skein_, a Magistrate of the City of _Aberdeen_, a Man very modest,
and very averse from giving Offence to others, who nevertheless being
overcome by the Power of Truth in this Matter, behoved for this Cause
to separate himself from the publick Assemblies and Prayers, and join
himself unto us; who also gave the Reason of his Change, and likewise
succinctly, but yet substantially, comprehended this Controversy
concerning _Worship_ in some short Questions, which he offered to the
publick Preachers of the _City_, and which I think meet to insert in
this Place.

[Sidenote: _Some Questions of_ A. Skein _proposed to the Preachers in_
Aberdeen.] 1. _Whether or not should an Act of God’s Worship be gone
about without the Motions, Leadings, and Actings of the Holy Spirit?_

2. _If the Motions of the Spirit be necessary to every particular Duty,
whether should he be waited upon, that all our Acts and Words may be
according as he gives Utterance and Assistance?_

3. _Whether every one that bears the Name of a _Christian_, or
professes to be a _Protestant_, hath such an uninterrupted Measure
thereof, that he may, without waiting, go immediately about the Duty?_

4. _If there be an Indisposition and Unfitness at some Times for such
Exercises, at least as to the spiritual and lively Performance thereof,
whether ought they to be performed in that Case, and at that Time?_

5. _If any Duty be gone about, under Pretence that it is in Obedience
to the external Command, without the spiritual Life and Motion
necessary, whether such a Duty thus performed can in Faith be expected
to be accepted of God, and not rather reckoned as a [111]Bringing of
strange Fire before the Lord, seeing it is performed at best by the
Strength of natural and acquired Parts, and not by the Strength and
Assistance of the Holy Ghost, which was typified by the Fire that came
down from Heaven, which alone behoved to consume the Sacrifice, and no

[111] Lev. 16. 1.

6. _Whether Duties gone about in the mere Strength of natural and
acquired Parts, whether in Publick or Private, be not as really, upon
the Matter, an Image of Man’s Invention as the _Popish_ Worship, though
not so gross in the outward Appearance? And therefore whether it be not
as real Superstition to countenance any Worship of that Nature, as it
is to countenance _Popish_ Worship, though there be a Difference in the

7. _Whether it be a Ground of Offence or just Scandal to countenance
the Worship of those whose professed Principle it is neither to speak
for Edification, nor to pray, but as the Holy Ghost shall be pleased
to assist them in some Measure less or more; without which they rather
choose to be silent, than to speak without this Influence?_

Unto these they answered but very coldly and faintly, whose Answers
likewise long ago he refuted.

[Sidenote: _We must not lose our Witnessing for God._] Seeing then God
hath called us to his spiritual Worship, and to testify against the
human and voluntary Worships of the Apostasy, if we did not this Way
stand immoveable to the _Truth_ revealed, but should join with them,
both our Testimony for God would be weakened and lost, and it would
be impossible steadily to propagate this Worship in the World, whose
Progress we dare neither retard nor hinder by any Act of ours; though
therefore we shall lose not only worldly Honour, but even our Lives.
And truly many _Protestants_, through their Unsteadiness in this Thing,
for politic Ends complying with the _Popish Abominations_, have greatly
scandalized their Profession, and hurt the Reformation; [Sidenote:
_Elector of_ Saxony’_s Scandal given to_ Protestants.] as appeared in
the Example of the _Elector_ of _Saxony_; who, in the Convention at
_Augsburgh_, in the Year 1530, being commanded by the Emperor _Charles_
the Fifth to be present at the _Mass_, that he might carry the Sword
before him, according to his Place; which when he justly scrupled to
perform, his Preachers taking more Care for their Prince’s Honour than
for his Conscience, persuaded him that it was lawful to do it against
his Conscience. Which was both a very bad Example, and great Scandal to
the Reformation, and displeased many; as the Author of the _History_ of
the _Council_ of _Trent_, in his first Book, well observes. [Sidenote:
Secondly, _Objections against spiritual Prayer_ answered.] But now I
hasten to the Objections of our Adversaries against this Method of

§. XXV. [Sidenote: Obj. 1.] _First_, They object, _That if such
particular Influences were needful to outward Acts of Worship, then
they should also be needful to inward Acts; to wit, Desire and Love to
God. But this is absurd; therefore also that from whence it follows._

[Sidenote: _Answ._] I _answer_; That which was said in the _State_
of the _Controversy_ cleareth this; because, as to those general
Duties, there never wants an Influence, so long as the Day of a Man’s
Visitation lasteth; during which Time _God is always near_ to him, and
_wrestling_ with him by his Spirit, to turn him to himself; so that if
he do but stand still, and cease from his evil Thoughts, the Lord is
near to help him, _&c._ But as to the outward Acts of Prayer, they need
a more special Motion and Influence, as hath been proved.

[Sidenote: Obj. 2.] _Secondly_, They object, _That it might be also
alleged, that Men ought not to do moral Duties, as Children to honour
their Parents, Men to do right to their Neighbours, except the Spirit
move them to it_.

[Sidenote: _Answ._] I _answer_; There is a great Difference between
these general Duties betwixt Man and Man, and the particular express
Acts of Worship towards God: The one is merely spiritual, and
commanded by God to be performed by his Spirit; the other answer their
End, as to them whom they are immediately directed to and concern,
though done from a mere natural Principle of Self-love; even as
_Beasts_ have natural Affections one to another, and therefore may be
thus performed. Though I shall not deny, but that they are not Works
accepted of God, or beneficial to the Soul, but as they are done in the
Fear of God, and in his Blessing, in which his Children do all Things,
and therefore are accepted and blessed in whatsoever they do.

[Sidenote: Obj. 3.] _Thirdly_, They object, _That if a wicked Man ought
not to pray without a Motion of the Spirit, because his Prayer would
be sinful; neither ought he to plow by the same Reason, because the
[112]_Plowing of the Wicked_, as well as his Praying, _is Sin.

[112] Prov. 21. 4.

[Sidenote: _Answ._] This Objection is of the same Nature with the
former, and therefore may be answered the same Way; [Sidenote: _How
Acts of Nature differ from the Spirit’s_.] seeing there is a great
Difference betwixt natural Acts, such as _Eating_, _Drinking_,
_Sleeping_, and _seeking Sustenance for the Body_ (which Things Man
hath common with Beasts) and spiritual Acts. And it doth not follow,
because Man ought not to go about _spiritual Acts_ without the Spirit,
that therefore he may not go about _natural Acts_ without it. The
_Analogy_ holds better thus, and that for the Proof of our Affirmation,
That as Man for the going about natural Acts needs his natural Spirit;
so to perform spiritual Acts he needs the Spirit of God. That the
_natural Acts_ of the Wicked and Unregenerate are _sinful_, is not
denied; though not as in themselves, but in so far as Man in that State
is in all Things reprobated in the Sight of God.

[Sidenote: Obj. 4.] _Fourthly_, They object, _That wicked Men may,
according to this Doctrine, forbear to pray for Years together,
alleging, They want a Motion to it_.

[Sidenote: _Answ._] I answer; The false Pretences of wicked Men do
nothing invalidate the Truth of this Doctrine; for at that Rate there
is no Doctrine of Christ, which Men might not set aside. That _they
ought not to pray without the Spirit_, is granted; but then they ought
to come to that Place of _Watching_, where they may be capable to feel
the Spirit’s Motion. [Sidenote: _That wicked Men neglect the Motions
of the Spirit to pray._] They _sin_ indeed in not _Praying_; but the
Cause of this _Sin_ is their not _Watching_: So their Neglect proceeds
not from this Doctrine, but from their Disobedience to it; seeing if
they did pray without this, it would be a double Sin, and no Fulfilling
of the Command to _pray_: Nor yet would their _Prayer_, without this
Spirit, be useful unto them. And this our Adversaries are forced to
acknowledge in another Case: For they say, _It is a Duty incumbent on
Christians to frequent the Sacrament of the Lord’s Supper_, as they
call it; yet they say, _No Man ought to take it unworthily_: Yea, they
plead, That such as find themselves unprepared, must abstain; and
therefore do usually _excommunicate_ them from the Table. Now, though
according to them it be necessary to partake of this Sacrament; yet it
is also necessary that those that do it, do first examine themselves,
lest they eat and drink their own Condemnation: And though they reckon
it _sinful_ for them to forbear, yet they account it more _sinful_ for
them to do it without this Examination.

[Sidenote: Obj. 5.] _Fifthly_, They object, _Acts_ viii. 22. _where_
Peter _commanded_ Simon Magus, _that wicked Sorcerer, to pray_; from
thence inferring, _That wicked Men may and ought to pray_.

[Sidenote: _Answ._] I answer; That in the citing of this Place, as I
have often observed, they omit the first and chief Part of the Verse,
which is thus, _Acts_ viii. Ver. 22. [Sidenote: _The _Sorcerer_ may
pray, but not without _Repentance.] _Repent therefore of this thy
Wickedness, and pray God, if perhaps the Thought of thine Heart may
be forgiven thee_: So here he bids him first _Repent_. Now the least
Measure of true Repentance cannot be without somewhat of that inward
Retirement of the Mind which we speak of: And indeed where true
Repentance goeth first, we do not doubt but the Spirit of God will be
near to concur with, and influence such to pray to and call upon God.

[Sidenote: Obj. 6.] And _Lastly_, They object, _That many Prayers begun
without the Spirit have proved effectual; and that the Prayers of
wicked Men have been heard, and found acceptable, as _Ahab_’s._

[Sidenote: _Answ._] This Objection was before solved. For the Acts of
God’s Compassion and Indulgence at some Times, and to some Persons,
upon singular extraordinary Occasions, are not to be a Rule of our
Actions. For if we should make that the Measure of our Obedience, great
Inconveniences would follow; as is evident, and will be acknowledged
by all. Next, We do not deny, but wicked Men are sensible of the
Motions and Operations of God’s Spirit oftentimes, before their Day be
expired; from which they may at Times pray acceptably; not as remaining
altogether wicked, but as entering into Piety, from whence they
afterwards fall away.

§. XXVI. [Sidenote: III.] [Sidenote: _Of singing _Psalms.] As to the
_Singing of Psalms_, there will not be need of any long Discourse; for
that the Case is just the same as in the two former of _Preaching_ and
_Prayer_. We confess this to be a Part of God’s Worship, and very sweet
and refreshing, when it proceeds from a true Sense of God’s Love in the
Heart, and arises from the divine Influence of the Spirit, [Sidenote:
_A sweet harmonious Sound_.] which leads Souls to breathe forth either
a sweet Harmony, or Words suitable to the present Condition; whether
they be Words formerly used by the Saints, and recorded in Scripture,
such as the _Psalms_ of _David_, or other Words; as were the Hymns
and Songs of _Zacharias_, _Simeon_, and the blessed Virgin _Mary_.
[Sidenote: _But formal Singing has no Ground in _Scripture.] But
as for the formal customary Way of _Singing_, it hath no Foundation
in Scripture, nor any Ground in true Christianity: Yea, besides all
the Abuses incident to _Prayer_ and _Preaching_, it hath this more
peculiar, that oftentimes great and horrid Lies are said in the Sight
of God: [Sidenote: _Profane Singing of _David_’s Conditions refuted._]
For all Manner of wicked profane People take upon them to personate
the Experiences and Conditions of blessed _David_; which are not only
false, as to them, but also as to some of more Sobriety, who utter them
forth: As where they will sing sometimes, _Psalm_ xxii. 14.--_My Heart
is like Wax, it is melted in the Midst of my Bowels_: And Ver. 15. _My
Strength is dried up like a Potsherd, and my Tongue cleaveth to my
Jaws; and thou hast brought me into the Dust of Death_: And _Psalm_ vi.
6. _I am weary with my Groaning, all the Night make I my Bed to swim: I
water my Couch with my Tears_: And many more, which those that speak
know to be false, as to them. And sometimes will confess just after,
in their Prayers, that they are guilty of the Vices opposite to those
Virtues, which but just before they have asserted themselves endued
with. Who can suppose that God accepts of such Juggling? And indeed
such _Singing_ doth more please the carnal Ears of Men, than the pure
Ears of the Lord, who abhors all Lying and Hypocrisy.

That _Singing_ then that pleaseth him must proceed from that which
is _PURE in the Heart_ (even from the _Word of Life_ therein) in and
by which, richly dwelling in us, _spiritual Songs_ and _Hymns_ are
returned to the Lord, according to that of the Apostle, _Col._ iii. 16.

[Sidenote: _Artificial Musick._] But as to their _artificial Musick_,
either by Organs, or other Instruments, or Voice, we have neither
Example nor Precept for it in the New Testament.

§. XXVII. But _Lastly_, The great Advantage of this true _Worship of
God_, which we profess and practise, is, that it consisteth not in
Man’s Wisdom, Arts or Industry; [Sidenote: _No Splendor of this _World_
attends this inward Worship_.] neither needeth the Glory, Pomp, Riches,
nor Splendor of this World to beautify it, as being of a spiritual
and heavenly Nature; and therefore too simple and contemptible to the
natural Mind and Will of Man, that hath no Delight to abide in it,
because he finds no Room there for his Imaginations and Inventions,
and hath not the Opportunity to gratify his outward and carnal Senses:
So that this Form being observed, is not likely to be long kept pure
without the Power; for it is of itself so naked without it, that it
hath nothing in it to invite and tempt Men to dote upon it, further
than it is accompanied with the Power. [Sidenote: _The carnal _Worship_
pleases Self._] Whereas the Worship of our Adversaries, being performed
in their own Wills, is self-pleasing, as in which they can largely
exercise their natural Parts and Invention: And so (as to most of them)
having somewhat of an outward and worldly Splendor, delectable to the
carnal and worldly Senses, they can pleasantly continue it, and satisfy
themselves, though without the Spirit and Power; which they make no
Ways essential to the Performance of their Worship, and therefore
neither wait for, nor expect it.

§. XXVIII. [Sidenote: _The _Worship_ of the _Quakers.] So that to
conclude, The Worship, Preaching, Praying and Singing, which we plead
for, _Is such as proceedeth from the Spirit of God, and is always
accompanied with its Influence, being begun by its Motion, and carried
on by the Power and Strength thereof; and so is a _Worship_ purely
spiritual_: Such as the Scripture holds forth, _John_ iv. 23, 24. 1
_Cor._ xiv. 15. _Ephes._ vi. 18. &c.

[Sidenote: _Our Adversaries Worship._] But the Worship, Preaching,
Praying and Singing, which our Adversaries plead for, and which we
oppose, _Is a Worship which is both begun, carried on, and concluded
in Man’s own natural _Will_ and _Strength_, without the Motion or
Influence of God’s Spirit, which they judge they need not wait for; and
therefore may be truly performed, both as to the Matter and Manner, by
the _wickedest of Men_, Such was the Worship and vain Oblations_ which
God always rejected, as appears from _Isa._ lxvi. 3. _Jer._ xiv. 12.
&c. _Isa._ i. 13. _Prov._ xv. 29. _John_ ix. 31.


Concerning BAPTISM.

[113]_As there is _one Lord_, and _one Faith_, so there is one
    _Baptism_; _which is not the putting away the_ Filth _of the_
    Flesh, _but the Answer of a good Conscience before God, by the
    Resurrection of Jesus Christ_. And this Baptism is a pure and
    spiritual Thing, to wit, the Baptism of the Spirit and Fire, by
    which we are buried with him, that being washed and purged from
    our Sins, we may _walk in newness of Life_: Of which the Baptism
    of _John_ was a Figure, which was commanded for a Time, and not to
    continue for ever. As to the Baptism of _Infants_, it is a mere
    human Tradition, for which neither _Precept_ nor _Practice_ is to
    be found in all the Scripture._

[113] Ephes. 4. 5. 1 Pet. 3. 21. Rom. 6. 4. Gal. 3. 27. Col. 2. 12.
John 3. 30. 1 Cor. 1. 17.

§. I. I did sufficiently demonstrate, in the Explanation and Proof of
the former Proposition, how greatly the _Professors_ of _Christianity_,
as well _Protestants_ as _Papists_, were degenerated in the Matter
of _Worship_, and how much Strangers to, and averse from that true
and acceptable _Worship_ that is performed in the _Spirit of Truth_,
because of Man’s natural Propensity in his fallen State to exalt his
own _Inventions_, and to intermix his own _Work_ and _Product_ in
the Service of God: [Sidenote: _From whence Idolatries and Heathen
Superstitions did spring._] And from this Root sprung all the idle
Worships, Idolatries, and numerous superstitious Inventions among the
_Heathens_. For when God, in Condescension to his chosen People the
_Jews_, did prescribe to them by his Servant _Moses_ many _Ceremonies_
and _Observations_, as _Types_ and _Shadows_ of the _Substance_,
which in due Time was to be revealed; which consisted for the most
Part in Washings, outward Purifications and Cleansings, which were
to continue until the Time of _Reformation_, until the _spiritual
Worship_ should be set up; and that God, by the more plentiful pouring
forth of his _Spirit_, and guiding of that _Anointing_, should lead
his _Children into all Truth_, and teach them to worship him in a Way
more spiritual and acceptable to him, though less agreeable to the
carnal and outward Senses; yet, notwithstanding _God’s Condescension_
to the _Jews_ in such Things, we see that that Part in Man, which
delights to follow its own _Inventions_, could not be restrained,
nor yet satisfied with all these _Observations_, but that oftentimes
they would be either declining to the other _Superstitions_ of the
_Gentiles_, or adding some new Observations and Ceremonies of their
own; to which they were so devoted, that they were still apt to prefer
them before the Commands of God, and that under the Notion of _Zeal_
and _Piety_. [Sidenote: _The _Pharisees_ the _chiefest_ among the
_Jews.] This we see abundantly in the Example of the _Pharisees_,
the chief Sect among the _Jews_, whom Christ so frequently reproves,
_For making void the Commandments of God by their Traditions_, Matt.
xv. 6. 9. _&c._ This Complaint may at this Day be no less justly made
as to many bearing the _Name_ of _Christians_, who have introduced
many Things of this Kind, partly borrowed from the _Jews_, which they
more tenaciously stick to, and more earnestly contend for, than for
the weightier Points of _Christianity_; [Sidenote: _Many Things in
Christendom are borrowed from the_ Jews _and_ Gentiles.] because that
_Self_, yet alive, and ruling in them, loves their own _Inventions_
better than God’s _Commands_. But if they can by any Means stretch any
_Scripture Practice_, or _conditional Precept_ or _Permission_, fitted
to the Weakness or Capacity of some, or appropriate to some particular
Dispensation, to give some Colour for any of these their _Inventions_;
they do then so tenaciously stick to them, and so obstinately and
obstreperously plead for them, that they will not patiently hear the
most solid _Christian_ Reasons against them. Which Zeal, if they would
but seriously examine it, they would find to be but the Prejudice of
_Education_, and the Love of _Self_, more than that of _God_, or his
_pure Worship_. [Sidenote: _Of _Sacraments_ so many _Controversies.]
This is verified concerning those Things which are called _Sacraments_,
about which they are very ignorant in _Religious Controversies_, who
understand not how much Debate, Contention, Jangling, and Quarrelling
there has been among those called _Christians_: So that I may safely
say the _Controversy_ about them, to wit, about their _Number_,
_Nature_, _Virtue_, _Efficacy_, _Administration_, and other Things,
hath been more than about any other _Doctrine_ of _Christ_, whether as
betwixt _Papists_ and _Protestants_, or among _Protestants_ betwixt
themselves. And how great Prejudice these _Controversies_ have brought
to _Christians_ is very obvious; whereas the Things contended for among
them are for the most Part but empty Shadows, and mere outside Things:
As I hope hereafter to make appear to the patient and unprejudiced

§. II. [Sidenote: _The Name of _Sacrament_ (not found in _Scripture_)
is borrowed from the _Heathen.] That which comes first under
Observation, is the Name [_Sacrament_] which it is strange that
_Christians_ should stick to and contend so much for, since it is
not to be found in all the _Scripture_; but was borrowed from the
_military Oaths_ among the _Heathens_, from whom the _Christians_,
when they began to _apostatize_, did borrow many _superstitious Terms_
and _Observations_, that they might thereby ingratiate themselves,
and the more easily gain the _Heathens_ to their _Religion_; which
Practice, though perhaps intended by them for Good, yet, as being the
Fruit of _human Policy_, and not according to _God’s Wisdom_, has had
very pernicious Consequences. I see not how any, whether _Papists_ or
_Protestants_, especially the latter, can in Reason quarrel with us for
denying this Term, which it seems the Spirit of God saw not meet to
inspire the Penmen of the Scriptures to leave unto us.

[Sidenote: Obj. 1.] But if it be said, That _it is not the Name, but
the Thing they contend for_;

[Sidenote: _Answ._] I _answer_; Let the Name then, as not being
_scriptural_, be laid aside, and we shall see at first Entrance how
much Benefit will redound by laying aside this traditional Term, and
betaking us to Plainness of _Scripture Language_. For presently the
great Contest about the Number of them will vanish; seeing there
is no Term used in Scripture that can be made use of, whether we
call them _Institutions_, _Ordinances_, _Precepts_, _Commandments_,
_Appointments_, or _Laws_, &c. that would afford Ground for such
a Debate; since neither will _Papists_ affirm, that there are only
_seven_, or _Protestants_ only _two_, of any of these aforementioned.

[Sidenote: Obj. 2.] If it be said, That this _Controversy arises from
the Definition of the Thing, as well as from the Name_.

[Sidenote: _Answ._ _The _Definition_ of _Sacrament_ agrees to many
other Things._] It will be found otherwise: For whatever Way we take
their Definition of a _Sacrament_, whether as an _outward visible Sign,
whereby inward Grace is conferred, or only signified_, this Definition
will agree to many Things, which neither _Papists_ nor _Protestants_
will acknowledge to be _Sacraments_. If they be expressed under the
Name of _sealing Ordinances_, as by some they are, I could never see,
either by Reason or Scripture, how this Title could be appropriate to
them, more than to any other _Christian_, _religious Performance_:
[Sidenote: _What _sealing Ordinance_ doth mean._] For that must needs
properly be a _sealing Ordinance_, which makes the _Persons_ receiving
it _infallibly certain of the Promise_ or Thing _sealed to them_.

[Sidenote: Obj. 3.] If it be said, _It is so to them that are faithful_;

[Sidenote: _Answ._] I _answer_; So is Praying and Preaching, and doing
of every good Work. Seeing the Partaking or Performing of the one gives
not to any a more certain Title to Heaven, yea, in some Respect, not so
much, there is no Reason to call them so, more than the other.

Besides, we find not any Thing called the _Seal_ and _Pledge_ of our
_Inheritance_, but the _Spirit_ of _God_. It is by that we are said to
be sealed, Ephes. i. 14. and iv. 30. which is also termed the _Earnest
of our Inheritance_, 2 Cor. i. 22. and not by _outward Water_, or
_Eating_ and _Drinking_; which as the wickedest of Men may partake of,
so many that do, do, notwithstanding it, go to Perdition. [Sidenote:
_That_ outward Washing _doth not cleanse the_ Heart.] For it is not
_outward Washing with Water_ that maketh the _Heart clean_, by which
Men are fitted for Heaven: And as that _which goeth into the Mouth
doth not defile a Man, because it is put forth again_, and so goeth to
the _Dunghill_; neither doth any Thing which Man eateth purify him,
or fit him for Heaven. What is said here in general may serve for an
Introduction, not only to this Proposition, but also to the other
concerning the _Supper_. Of these _Sacraments_ (so called) _Baptism_
is always first numbered, which is the Subject of the present
Proposition; in the Explanation of which I shall first demonstrate
and prove our Judgment, and then answer the Objections, and refute
the Sentiments of our Opposers. [Sidenote: Part I.] As to the first
Part, these Things following, which are briefly comprehended in the
Proposition, come to be proposed and proved.

§. III. [Sidenote: Prop. I.] First, _There is but one Baptism_, as well
as but _one Lord, one Faith_, &c.

[Sidenote: Prop. II.] Secondly, _That this one Baptism, which is the
Baptism of Christ, is not a Washing with, or Dipping in Water, but a
being baptised by the Spirit_.

[Sidenote: Prop. III.] Thirdly, _That the Baptism of _John_ was but
a Figure of this; and therefore, as the Figure, to give Place to the
Substance; which though it be to continue, yet the other ceaseth_.

[Sidenote: Prop. I.] [Sidenote: _One Baptism proved._] As for the
First, viz. _That there is but one Baptism_, there needs no other Proof
than the Words of the Text, _Ephes._ iv. 5. _One Lord_, _one Faith_,
_one Baptism_: Where the Apostle positively and plainly affirms, that
as there is but _one Body_, _one Spirit_, _one Faith_, _one God_, &c.
so there is but _one Baptism_.

[Sidenote: Obj. 1.] As to what is commonly alleged by Way of
Explanation upon the Text, _That the Baptism of Water and of the Spirit
make up this one Baptism, by Virtue of the sacramental Union_;

[Sidenote: _Answ._] I _answer_; This Exposition hath taken Place, not
because grounded upon the Testimony of the Scripture, but because
it wrests the Scripture to make it suit to their Principle of
_Water-baptism_; and so there needs no other Reply, but to deny it, as
being repugnant to the plain Words of the Text; [Sidenote: _Whether
_two Baptisms_ make up the _One.] which saith not, _That there are
two Baptisms_, to wit, one of _Water_, the other of the _Spirit_, which
do make up _one Baptism_; but plainly, _that there is one Baptism_, as
there is _one Faith_, and _one God_. Now as there go not _two Faiths_,
nor _two Gods_, nor _two Spirits_, nor two _Bodies_, whereof the one
is outward and elementary, and the other spiritual and pure, to the
making up the _one Faith_, the _one God_, the _one Body_, and the _one
Spirit_; so neither ought there to go _two Baptisms_ to make up the
_one Baptism_.

[Sidenote: Obj. 2.] But _Secondly_, if it be said, _The Baptism is but
one, whereof Water is the one Part, to wit, the Sign; and the Spirit,
the Thing signified, the other_;

[Sidenote: _Answ._] [Sidenote: _If _Water_ be the Type, the Substance
must remain._] I _answer_; This yet more confirmeth our Doctrine:
For if Water be only the _Sign_, it is not the _Matter_ of the _one
Baptism_ (as shall further hereafter by its Definition in Scripture
appear) and we are to take the _one Baptism_ for the _Matter_ of it,
not for the _Sign_, or _Figure_ and _Type_ that went before. Even as
where Christ is called the _one Offering_ in Scripture, though he
was typified by many _Sacrifices_ and _Offerings_ under the Law, we
understand only by the _one Offering_, his offering himself upon the
Cross; whereof though those many _Offerings_ were Signs and Types, yet
we say not that they go together with that _Offering of Christ_, to
make up the _one Offering_: So neither, though _Water-baptism_ was a
Sign of Christ’s _Baptism_, will it follow, that it goeth now to make
up the _Baptism of Christ_. If any should be so absurd as to affirm,
_That this one Baptism here was the Baptism of Water, and not of the
Spirit_; that were foolishly to contradict the positive Testimony of
the Scripture, which saith the contrary; as by what followeth will more
amply appear.

[Sidenote: Prop. II.] _Secondly, That this _one Baptism_, which is
the _Baptism_ of _Christ_, is not a Washing with Water_, appears,
[Sidenote: Proof 1. _The Difference between_ John_’s Baptism and_
Christ_’s_.] _First_, From the Testimony of _John_, the proper and
peculiar Administrator of Water-baptism, _Matt._ iii. 11. _I indeed
baptize you with Water unto Repentance; but he that cometh after me
is mightier than I, whose Shoes I am not worthy to bear; he shall
baptize you with the Holy Ghost, and with Fire_. Here _John_ mentions
two Manners of _baptizing_, and two different _Baptisms_; the one
with Water, and the other with the Spirit; the one whereof he was the
Minister of; the other whereof Christ was the Minister of: And such
as were baptized with the first, were not therefore baptized with the
second: _I indeed baptize you, but he shall baptize you_. Though in the
present Time they were baptized with the Baptism of Water; yet they
were not as yet, but were to be, baptized with the Baptism of Christ.
From all which I thus argue:

[Sidenote: Arg. 1.] If those that were baptized with the Baptism of
Water, were not therefore baptized with the Baptism of Christ; then the
Baptism of Water is not the Baptism of Christ:

But the First is true: Therefore also the Last.

        And again,

[Sidenote: Arg. 2.] If he, that truly and really administred the
Baptism of Water, did notwithstanding declare, that he neither could,
nor did, baptize with the Baptism of Christ; then the Baptism of Water
is not the Baptism of Christ:

But the First is true: Therefore, _&c._

And indeed to understand it otherwise, would make _John_’s Words void
of good Sense: For if their Baptisms had been all one, why should he
have so precisely contra-distinguished them? Why should he have said,
That those whom he had already baptized, should yet be baptized with
another Baptism?

[Sidenote: Object.] If it be urged, _That Baptism with Water was the
one Part, and that with the Spirit the other Part, or Effect only of
the former_;

[Sidenote: _Answ._] I _answer_; This Exposition contradicts the plain
Words of the Text. [Sidenote: _One _Baptism_ is no Part nor Effect of
the other._] For he saith not, _I baptize you with Water, and he that
cometh after me shall produce the Effects of this my Baptism in you by
the Spirit_, &c. or _he shall accomplish this Baptism in you_; but,
_He shall baptize you_. So then, if we understand the Words truly and
properly, when he saith, _I baptize you_, as consenting that thereby is
really signified that he did baptize with the Baptism of Water; we must
needs, unless we offer Violence to the Text, understand the other Part
of the Sentence the same Way; _viz._ where he adds presently, _But he
shall baptize you_, &c. that he understood it of their being truly to
be baptized with another Baptism, than what he did baptize with: Else
it had been Nonsense for him thus to have contra-distinguished them.

[Sidenote: Proof 2.] _Secondly_, This is further confirmed by the
Saying of Christ himself, _Acts_ i. 4, 5. _But wait for the Promise of
the Father, which, saith he, ye have heard of me: For _John_ truly
baptized with Water, but ye shall be baptized with the Holy Ghost, not
many Days hence._ [Sidenote: _Who were baptized by _John_ were still to
wait for _Christ_’s _Baptism_ with the Spirit._] There can scarce two
Places of Scripture run more parallel than this doth with the former,
a little before-mentioned; and therefore concludeth the same Way as
did the other. For Christ here grants fully that _John_ compleated
his Baptism, as to the Matter and Substance of it: _John_, saith he,
_truly baptized with Water_; which is as much as if he had said, _John_
did truly and fully administer the Baptism of Water; _But ye shall be
baptized with_, &c. This sheweth that they were to be baptized with
some other Baptism than the Baptism of Water; and that although they
were formerly baptized with the Baptism of Water, yet not with that of
Christ, which they were to be baptized with.

[Sidenote: Proof 3.] [Sidenote: _The Baptism with the _Holy Ghost_
and that with _Water_ differ._] _Thirdly_, _Peter_ observes the same
Distinction, _Acts_ xi. 16. _Then remembered I the Word of the Lord,
how that he said, _John_ indeed baptized with Water; but ye shall be
baptized with the Holy Ghost._ The Apostle makes this Application
upon the _Holy Ghost_’s Falling upon them; whence he infers, that
they were then baptized with the Baptism of the Spirit. As to what is
urged from his calling afterwards for _Water_, it shall be spoken to
hereafter. From all which _three Sentences_, relative one to another,
first of _John_, secondly of _Christ_, and thirdly of _Peter_, it
doth evidently follow, that such as were truly and really baptized
with the Baptism of Water, were notwithstanding not baptized with the
Baptism of the Spirit, which is that of Christ; and such as truly and
really did administer the Baptism of Water, did, in so doing, not
administer the Baptism of Christ. So that if there be now but _one
Baptism_, as we have already proved, we may safely conclude that it is
that of the _Spirit_, and not of _Water_; else it would follow, that
the _one Baptism_, which now continues, were the _Baptism of Water_,
i. e. _John_’s Baptism, and not the _Baptism of the Spirit_, i. e.
_Christ_’s; which were most absurd.

[Sidenote: Object.] If it be said further, _That though the Baptism
of _John_, before _Christ_’s was administred, was different from it,
as being the Figure only; yet now, that both it as the Figure, and
that of the Spirit as the Substance, is necessary to make up the one

I _answer_; This urgeth nothing, unless it be granted also that both
of them belong to the Essence of _Baptism_; so that _Baptism_ is not
to be accounted as truly administred, where both are not; which none
of our Adversaries will acknowledge: But on the contrary, account not
only all those truly baptized with the _Baptism of Christ_, [Sidenote:
_Water-baptism is not the true Baptism of _Christ.] who are baptized
with _Water_, though they be uncertain whether they be baptized with
the _Spirit_, or not; but they even account such truly baptized with
the _Baptism of Christ_, because _sprinkled_, or baptized with Water,
though it be manifest and most certain that they are not baptized with
the Spirit, as being Enemies thereunto in their Hearts by wicked Works.
So here, by their own Confession, _Baptism with Water_ is without the
Spirit. Wherefore we may far safer conclude, that the _Baptism of
the Spirit_, which is that of _Christ_, is and may be without that
of _Water_; as appears in that of _Acts_ xi. where _Peter_ testifies
of these Men, that _they were baptized with the Spirit_, though then
not _baptized with Water_. And indeed the Controversy in this, as in
most other Things, stands betwixt us and our Opposers, in that they
oftentimes prefer the Form and Shadow to the Power and Substance; by
denominating Persons as Inheritors and Possessors of the Thing, from
their having the Form and Shadow, though really wanting the Power and
Substance; and not admitting those to be so denominated, who have the
Power and Substance, if they want the Form and Shadow. This appears
evidently, in that they account those truly _baptized_ with the _one
Baptism of Christ_, who are not baptized with the _Spirit_ (which in
Scripture is particularly called the _Baptism of Christ_) if they be
only baptized with Water, which themselves yet confess to be but the
Shadow or Figure. [Sidenote: _The Baptism of the Spirit needeth no
Sprinkling or Dipping in Water._] And moreover, in that they account
not those who are surely baptized with the _Baptism of the Spirit_
baptized, neither will they have them so denominated, unless they be
also _sprinkled_ with, or _dipped_ in Water: But we, on the contrary,
do always prefer the Power to the Form, the Substance to the Shadow;
and where the Substance and Power is, we doubt not to denominate the
Person accordingly, though the Form be wanting. And therefore we
always seek First, and plead for the Substance and Power, as knowing
that to be indispensibly necessary, though the Form sometimes may be
dispensed with, and the Figure or Type may cease, when the Substance
and Anti-type come to be enjoyed, as it doth in this Case, which shall
hereafter be made appear.

§. IV. [Sidenote: Proof 4.] _Fourthly_, That the _one Baptism of
Christ_ is not a Washing with Water, appears from 1 _Pet._ iii. 21.
_The like Figure[114] whereunto even Baptism doth also now save us
(not the putting away of the Filth of the Flesh, but the Answer of a
good Conscience towards God) by the Resurrection of Jesus Christ_. So
plain a Definition of _Baptism_ is not in all the Bible; and therefore,
seeing it is so plain, it may well be preferred to all the coined
Definitions of the School-men. [Sidenote: _The plainest Definition of
the Baptism of Christ in all the Bible_.] The Apostle tells us, first
_negatively_, what it is not, viz. _Not a putting away of the Filth of
the Flesh_: Then surely it is not a _Washing_ with Water, since that
is so. _Secondly_, He tells us _affirmatively_ what it is, viz. _The
Answer of a good Conscience towards God, by the Resurrection of Jesus
Christ_; where he affirmatively defines it to be the _Answer_ (or
_Confession_, as the _Syriack_ Version hath it) _of a good Conscience_.
Now this _Answer_ cannot be but where the Spirit of God hath purified
the Soul, and the Fire of his Judgment hath burned up the unrighteous
Nature; and those in whom this Work is wrought may be truly said to
be _baptized with the Baptism of Christ_, i. e. _of the Spirit and
of Fire_. Whatever Way then we take this Definition of the Apostle
of _Christ’s Baptism_, it confirmeth our Sentence: For if we take
the first or negative Part, viz. _That it is not a putting away of
the Filth of the Flesh_, then it will follow that _Water-baptism_ is
not it, because that _is a putting away of the Filth of the Flesh_.
[Sidenote: _Water-baptism shut out from the Baptism of Christ._] If we
take the second and affirmative Definition, to wit, _That it is the
Answer_ or Confession _of a good Conscience_, &c. then _Water-baptism_
is not it; since, as our Adversaries will not deny, _Water-baptism_
doth not always imply it, neither is it any necessary Consequence
thereof. Moreover, the Apostle in this Place doth seem especially to
guard against those that might esteem _Water-baptism_ the true _Baptism
of Christ_; because (lest by the Comparison induced by him in the
preceding Verse, betwixt the Souls that were saved in _Noah_’s Ark, and
us that are now saved by _Baptism_; lest, I say, any should have thence
hastily concluded, that because the Former were saved by _Water_, this
Place must needs be taken to speak of _Water-baptism_) to prevent such
a Mistake, he plainly affirms, that it is not that, but another Thing.
He saith not that it is the _Water_, or _the putting away of the Filth
of the Flesh, as accompanied with the Answer of a good Conscience,
whereof the one_, viz. _Water, is the sacramental Element, administered
by the Minister; and the other, the Grace or Thing signified, conferred
by Christ_; but plainly, _That it is not the putting away_, &c.
than which there can be nothing more manifest to Men unprejudicate
and judicious. Moreover _Peter_ calls this here which saves [Greek:
antitypon: αντιτυπον], the _Anti-type_, or the _Thing figured_; whereas
it is usually translated, as if _the like Figure did now save us_;
thereby insinuating that as they were saved by Water in the Ark, so are
we now by _Water-baptism_. But this Interpretation crosseth his Sense,
he presently after declaring the contrary, as hath above been observed;
and likewise it would contradict the Opinion of all our Opposers.
[Sidenote: _The _Protestants_ denying _Water-baptism_ its absolute
Necessity to _Men’s Salvation_; although the _Papists_ say, _None can
be saved without it_, yet grant Exceptions._] For _Protestants_ deny
it to be absolutely necessary to Salvation; and though _Papists_ say,
_none are saved without it_, yet in this they admit an Exception, as of
_Martyrs_, &c. and they will not say that all that have it are saved by
_Water-baptism_; which they ought to say, if they will understand by
_Baptism_ (by which the Apostle saith we are saved) _Water-baptism_.
For seeing we are saved _by this Baptism_, as all those that were in
the Ark _were saved by Water_, it would then follow, that all those
that have this _Baptism_ are saved by it. Now this Consequence would be
false, if it were understood of _Water-baptism_; because many, by the
Confession of all, are _baptized_ with _Water_ that are not saved; but
this Consequence holds most true, if it be understood as we do, of the
_Baptism_ of the _Spirit_; since none can have this Answer of a good
Conscience, and, abiding in it, not be saved by it.

[114] Or, as it should be translated, _Whose Model Baptism does also
now save us._

[Sidenote: Proof 5.] Fifthly, _That the one Baptism of Christ is not a
Washing with Water_, as it hath been proved by the Definition of the
_one Baptism_, so it is also manifest from the necessary Fruits and
Effects of it, which are three Times particularly expressed by the
Apostle _Paul_; [Sidenote: _The Effects and Fruits of the Baptism of
_Christ.] as first, _Rom._ vi. 3, 4. where he saith, _That so many
of them as were baptized into Jesus Christ, were baptized into his
Death, buried with him by Baptism into Death, that they should walk
in Newness of Life_. Secondly, to the _Galatians_ iii. 27. he saith
positively, _For as many of you as have been baptized into Christ, have
put on Christ_. And thirdly, to the _Colossians_ ii. 12. he saith,
That they were _buried with him in Baptism_, and risen _with him
through the Faith of the Operation of God_. It is to be observed here,
that the Apostle speaks generally, without any _exclusive Term_, but
_comprehensive_ of all. He saith not, _Some of you that were baptized
into Christ, have put on Christ_, but _as many of you_; which is as
much as if he had said, _Every one of you that hath been baptized
into Christ, hath put on Christ_. Whereby it is evident that this is
not meant of _Water-baptism_, but of the _Baptism_ of the _Spirit_;
[Sidenote: _Which Effects_ Water-baptism _wants_.] because else it
would follow, that whosoever had been _baptized_ with _Water-baptism_
had put on _Christ_, and were _risen_ with him, which all acknowledge
to be most absurd. Now supposing all the visible Members of the
Churches of _Rome_, _Galatia_, and _Colosse_ had been outwardly
baptized with Water (I do not say they were, but our Adversaries will
not only readily grant it, but also contend for it) suppose, I say, the
Case so, they will not say they had _all put on Christ_, since divers
Expressions in these _Epistles_ to them shew the contrary. So that the
Apostle cannot mean _Baptism_ with _Water_; and yet that he meaneth the
_Baptism_ of _Christ_, i. e. _of the Spirit_, cannot be denied; or that
the _Baptism_ wherewith these were _baptized_ (of whom the Apostle here
testifies that they had _put on Christ_) was the _one Baptism_, I think
none will call in Question. Now admit, as our Adversaries contend,
that many in these Churches who had been _baptized_ with _Water_
had not _put on Christ_, it will follow, that notwithstanding that
_Water-baptism_, they were not baptized _into Christ_, or with the
Baptism of _Christ_, seeing _as many of them as were baptized_ into
_Christ had put on Christ_, &c. From all which I thus argue:

[Sidenote: Arg. 1.] _If the _Baptism_ with _Water_ were the one
_Baptism_, _i. e._ the _Baptism_ of _Christ_, as many as were baptized
with _Water_ would have put on Christ_:

But the Last is false: Therefore also the First.

        And again:

[Sidenote: Arg. 2.] _Since as many as are baptized into_ Christ, i. e.
_with the_ one Baptism, _which is the_ Baptism _of_ Christ, _have put
on_ Christ, _then_ Water-baptism _is not the one_ Baptism, _viz. the_
Baptism _of_ Christ:

But the First is true: Therefore also the Last.

§. V. [Sidenote: Prop. III.] [Sidenote: _Proved._] Thirdly, _Since_
John’s Baptism _was a Figure, and seeing the Figure gives Way to the
Substance, although the Thing figured remain, to wit, the_ one Baptism
_of_ Christ, _yet the other ceaseth, which was the_ Baptism _of_ John.

[Sidenote: I.] [Sidenote: John_’s Baptism was a Figure of _Christ_’s._]
That _John_’s Baptism was a Figure of _Christ_’s Baptism, I judge will
not readily be denied; but in Case it should, it can easily be proved
from the Nature of it. _John_’s Baptism was _a being baptized with
Water_, but _Christ_’s is _a Baptizing with the Spirit_; therefore
_John_’s Baptism must have been a Figure of _Christ_’s. But further,
that Water-Baptism was _John_’s Baptism, will not be denied: That
Water-baptism is not _Christ_’s Baptism, is already proved. From which
doth arise the Confirmation of our Proposition thus:

There is no Baptism to continue now, but the _one Baptism_ of Christ:

Therefore _Water-baptism_ is not to continue now, because it is not the
one Baptism of _Christ_.

[Sidenote: II.] [Sidenote: John_’s Baptism is ceased our Opposers
confess._] That _John_’s Baptism is ceased, many of our Adversaries
confess; but if any should allege it is otherwise, it may be easily
proved by the express Words of _John_, not only as being insinuated
there, where he contra-distinguisheth his Baptism from that of
_Christ_, but particularly where he saith, _John_ iii. 30. _He_
[Christ] _must increase, but I_ [John] _must decrease_. From whence it
clearly follows, that the _Increasing_ or taking Place of _Christ_’s
Baptism is the _Decreasing_ or Abolishing of _John_’s Baptism; so
that if Water-baptism was a particular Part of _John_’s Ministry, and
is no Part of _Christ_’s Baptism, as we have already proved, it will
necessarily follow that it is not to continue.

[Sidenote: Arg.] Secondly, _if _Water-baptism_ had been to continue
a perpetual Ordinance of Christ in his Church, he would either have
practised it himself, or commanded his Apostles so to do_.

But that he practised it not, the _Scripture_ plainly affirms,
_John_ iv. 2. And that he commanded his Disciples to _baptize_ with
_Water_, I could never yet read. As for what is alleged, that, _Matt._
xxviii. 19. &c. where he bids them _baptize_, is to be understood of
_Water-baptism_, that is but to beg the Question, and the Grounds for
that shall be hereafter examined.

_Therefore to _baptize_ with _Water_ is no perpetual Ordinance of
Christ to his Church._

This hath had the more Weight with me, because I find not any standing
_Ordinance or Appointment_ of _Christ_ necessary to Christians, for
which we have not either Christ’s own Practice or Command, as to obey
all the Commandments which comprehend both our Duty towards God and
Man, _&c._ and where the _Gospel_ requires more than the _Law_, which
is abundantly signified in the 5th and 6th Chapters of _Matthew_, and
elsewhere. Besides, as to the Duties of Worship, he exhorts us to meet,
promising his Presence; commands to _pray_, _preach_, _watch_, &c.
and gives Precepts concerning some temporary Things, as the _Washing_
of _one another’s Feet_, the _Breaking_ of _Bread_, hereafter to be
discussed; only for this one Thing of _Baptizing_ with _Water_, though
so earnestly contended for, we find not any Precept of Christ.

§. VI. [Sidenote: III.] [Sidenote: _The _Gospel_ puts an End to _carnal
Ordinances.] But to make Water-baptism a necessary _Institution_
of the _Christian Religion_, which is pure and spiritual, and
not carnal and ceremonial, is to derogate from the _New Covenant
Dispensation_, and set up the _legal Rites_ and _Ceremonies_, of which
this of _Baptism_, or _Washing_ with _Water_, was one, as appears
from _Heb._ ix. 10. where the Apostle speaking thereof saith, that
it stood _only in Meats and Drinks, and divers Baptisms, and carnal
Ordinances, imposed until the Time of Reformation_. If then the Time
of Reformation, or the Dispensation of the _Gospel_, which puts an End
to the Shadows, be come, then such _Baptisms_ and carnal _Ordinances_
are no more to be imposed. For how Baptism with _Water_ comes now to
be a _Spiritual Ordinance_, more than before in the Time of the _Law_,
doth not appear, seeing it is but _Water_ still, and a Washing of the
outward Man, and a putting away of the Filth of the Flesh still: And as
before, those that were so washed, were not thereby made perfect, as
pertaining to the _Conscience_, neither are they at this Day, as our
Adversaries must needs acknowledge, and Experience abundantly sheweth.
So that the Matter of it, which is a Washing with Water, and the Effect
of it, which is only an outward Cleansing, being still the same, how
comes Water-baptism to be less a carnal Ordinance now than before?

[Sidenote: Obj. 1.] If it be said, That _God confers inward Grace upon
some that are now baptized_;

[Sidenote: _Answ._] So no Doubt he did also upon some that used those
Baptisms among the _Jews_.

[Sidenote: Obj. 2.] Or if it be said, _Because it is commanded by
Christ now, under the New Covenant_;

[Sidenote: _Answ._] I answer, _First_, That is to beg the Question; of
which hereafter.

But _Secondly_, We find that where the Matter of Ordinances is the
same, and the End the same, they are never accounted more or less
spiritual, because of their different Times. Now was not God the Author
of the _Purifications_ and _Baptisms_ under the _Law_? Was not Water
the Matter of them, which is so now? Was not the End of them to signify
an inward Purifying by an outward Washing? And is not that alleged to
be the End still? [Sidenote: _Men are no more _now_ than _before_ by
_Water-baptism_ inwardly cleansed._] And are the necessary Effects or
Consequences of it any better now than before, since Men are now by
the Virtue of Water-baptism, as a necessary Consequence of it, no more
than before made inwardly clean? And if some by God’s Grace that are
baptized with Water are inwardly purified, so were some also under
the Law; so that this is not any necessary Consequence or Effect,
neither of this nor that Baptism. It is then plainly repugnant to right
Reason, as well as to the Scripture Testimony, to affirm _that_ to be
a spiritual Ordinance now, which was a carnal Ordinance before, if it
be still the same, both as to its Author, Matter, and End, however
made to vary in some small Circumstances. The Spirituality of the _New
Covenant_ and of its _Worship_ established by Christ, consisted not
in such superficial Alterations of Circumstances, but after another
Manner. Therefore let our Adversaries shew us, if they can, without
begging the Question, and building upon some one or other of their
own Principles denied by us, wherever Christ appointed or ordained
any Institution or Observation under the _New Covenant_, as belonging
to the Nature of it, or such a necessary Part of its _Worship_ as is
perpetually to continue; which being one in Substance and Effects (I
speak of necessary, not accidental Effects) yet, because of some small
Difference in Form or Circumstance, was before carnal, notwithstanding
it was commanded by God under the _Law_, but now is become spiritual,
because commanded by Christ under the _Gospel_? And if they cannot
do this, then if Water-baptism was once a carnal Ordinance, as the
Apostle positively affirms it to have been, it remains a carnal
Ordinance still; and if a carnal Ordinance, then no necessary Part of
the _Gospel_ or _New Covenant Dispensation_; and if no necessary Part
of it, then not needful to continue, nor to be practised by such as
live and walk under this _Dispensation_. But in this, as in most other
Things, according as we have often observed, our Adversaries _judaize_,
and renouncing the _glorious_ and _spiritual Privileges_ of the New
Covenant, are sticking in and cleaving to the Rudiments of the Old,
both in _Doctrine_ and _Worship_, as being more suited and agreeable to
their carnal Apprehensions and natural Senses. [Sidenote: _The _Law_
distinguished from the _Gospel.] But we, on the contrary, travail
above all to lay hold upon and cleave unto the _Light_ of the _glorious
Gospel_ revealed unto us. And the Harmony of the Truth we profess
in this may appear, by briefly observing how in all Things we follow
the _spiritual Gospel of Christ_, as contra-distinguished from the
Carnality of the _legal Dispensation_; while our Adversaries, through
rejecting this _Gospel_, are still labouring under the Burden of the
_Law_, which neither they nor their Fathers were able to bear.

[Sidenote: _The outward _Baptism_, _Worship_, _Law_, distinguished from
the inward._] _For the Law and Rule of the _Old Covenant_ and _Jews_
was outward, written in Tables of Stone and Parchment; _so also is that
of our Adversaries_. But the Law of the _New Covenant_ is inward and
perpetual, written in the Heart; _so is ours.

_The Worship of the _Jews_ was outward and carnal, limited to set
Times, Places, and Persons, and performed according to set prescribed
Forms and Observations; _so is that of our Adversaries_. But the
Worship of the _New Covenant_ is neither limited to Time, Place, nor
Person, but is performed in the Spirit and in Truth; and it is not
acted according to set Forms and Prescriptions, but as the Spirit of
God immediately actuates, moves, and leads, whether it be to preach,
pray, or sing; _and such is also our Worship.

_So likewise the _Baptism_ among the _Jews_ under the Law was an
_outward Washing_ with _outward Water_, only to typify an inward
Purification of the Soul, which did not necessarily follow upon those
that were thus baptized_; but the Baptism of Christ under the Gospel
is the Baptism of the Spirit and of Fire; _not the putting away of the
Filth of the Flesh, but the Answer of a good Conscience towards God_;
and such is the Baptism that we labour to be baptized withal, and
contend for.

§. VII. [Sidenote: Arg.] But again, If Water-baptism had been an
Ordinance of the Gospel, then the Apostle _Paul_ would have been
sent to administer it; but he declares positively, 1 _Cor._ i. 17.
_That Christ sent him not to baptize, but to preach the Gospel_. The
Reason of that Consequence is undeniable, because the Apostle _Paul_’s
Commission was as large as that of any of them; and consequently he
being in special Manner the Apostle of Christ to the _Gentiles_,
[Sidenote: IV. _That _Water-baptism_ is no Badge of _Christians_, like
_Circumcision_ of the _Jews.] if Water-baptism, as our Adversaries
contend, be to be accounted the _Badge of Christianity_, he had more
Need than any of the rest to be sent to baptize with Water, that he
might mark the _Gentiles_ converted by him with that _Christian Sign_.
But indeed the Reason holds better thus, that since _Paul_ was the
Apostle of the _Gentiles_, and that in his Ministry he doth through
all (as by his _Epistles_ appears) labour to wean them from the former
_Jewish Ceremonies_ and _Observations_ (though in so doing he was
sometimes undeservedly judged by others of his Brethren, who were
unwilling to lay aside those _Ceremonies_) therefore his Commission,
though as full as to the Preaching of the _Gospel_ and _New Covenant
Dispensation_ as that of the other Apostles, did not require of him
that he should lead those Converts into such _Jewish Observations_ and
_Baptisms_, however that Practice was indulged in and practised by
the other Apostles among their _Jewish Proselytes_; for which Cause
[115]_he thanks God that he had baptized so few_: Intimating that what
he did therein he did not by Virtue of his Apostolick Commission,
[Sidenote: Paul _was not sent to baptize._] but rather in Condescension
to their Weakness, even as at another Time he circumcised _Timothy_.

[115] 1 Cor. i. 14.

[Sidenote: Obj. 1.] Our Adversaries, to evade the Truth of this
Testimony, usually allege, _That by this is only to be understood, that
he was not sent principally to baptize, not that he was not sent at

[Sidenote: _Answ._] But this Exposition, since it contradicts the
positive Words of the Text, and has no better Foundation than the
Affirmation of its Assertors, is justly rejected as _spurious_, until
they bring some better Proof for it. He saith not, _I was not sent
_principally_ to baptize_, but _I was _not_ sent to baptize_.

[Sidenote: Confir.] As for what they urge, by Way of Confirmation, from
other Places of Scripture, where [_not_] is to be so taken, as where
it is said, [116]_I will have Mercy, and_ not _Sacrifice_, which is
to be understood that God requires principally _Mercy_, not excluding

[116] Matt. 9. 15. Hos. 6. 6.

[Sidenote: Refut.] I say this Place is abundantly explained by the
following Words [_and the Knowledge of God more than Burnt-offerings_;]
by which it clearly appears that _Burnt-offerings_, which are one with
_Sacrifices_, are not excluded; but there is no such Word added in that
of _Paul_, and therefore the Parity is not demonstrated to be alike,
and consequently the Instance not sufficient, unless they can prove
that it ought so to be admitted here; else we might interpret by the
same Rule all other Places of Scripture the same Way, as where the
Apostle saith, 1 _Cor._ ii. 5. _That your Faith might not stand in the
Wisdom of Men, but in the Power of God_, it might be understood, it
shall not stand _principally so_. How might the Gospel, by this Liberty
of Interpretation, be perverted?

[Sidenote: Obj. 2.] If it be said, _That the Abuse of this Baptism
among the _Corinthians_, in dividing themselves according to the
Persons by whom they were baptized, made the Apostle speak so; but that
the Abuse of a Thing doth not abolish it_;

[Sidenote: _Answ._] I _answer_, It is true, it doth not, provided the
Thing be lawful and necessary; and that no Doubt the Abuse abovesaid
gave the Apostle Occasion so to write. But let it from this be
considered how the Apostle excludes _Baptizing_, not _Preaching_,
though the Abuse [mark] proceeded from that, no less than from the
other. For these _Corinthians_ did denominate themselves from those
different Persons by whose _Preaching_ (as well as from those by
whom they were _baptized_) they were converted, as by the 4th, 5th,
6th, 7th, and 8th Verses of Chap. iii. may appear: [Sidenote: _That_
Preaching _is a standing Ordinance, and not to be forborne_.] And yet
to remove that Abuse the Apostle doth not say, He was not sent to
preach, nor yet doth he rejoice that he had only preached to a few;
because _Preaching_, being a standing Ordinance in the Church, is not,
because of any Abuse that the Devil may tempt any to make of it, to
be forborne by such as are called to perform it by the Spirit of God:
Wherefore the Apostle accordingly, _Chap._ iii. 8, 9. informs them,
as to that, how to remove that Abuse. But as to Water-baptism, for
that it was no standing Ordinance of Christ, but only practised as in
Condescension to the _Jews_, and by some Apostles to some _Gentiles_
also, therefore, so soon as the Apostle perceived the Abuse of it, he
let the _Corinthians_ understand how little Stress was to be laid upon
it, by shewing them that he was glad that he had administered this
Ceremony to so few of them; and by telling them plainly that it was no
Part of his Commission, neither that which he was sent to administer.

[Sidenote: Query.] Some ask us, _How we know that baptizing here is
meant of _Water_, and not of the _Spirit_; which if it be, then it will
exclude Baptism of the _Spirit_, as well as of _Water_?_

[Sidenote: _Answ._] I _answer_, Such as ask the Question, I suppose,
speak it not as doubting that this was said of Water-baptism, which is
more than manifest. [Sidenote: _That which converts to _Christ_ is the
Baptism of the Spirit._] For since the Apostle _Paul_’s Message was,
_To turn People from Darkness to Light_, and _convert them to God_;
and that as many as are thus turned and converted, (_so as to have the
Answer of a good Conscience toward God, and to have put on Christ, and
be risen with him in Newness of Life_) are baptized with the Baptism of
the Spirit. But who will say that only those few mentioned there to be
baptized by _Paul_ were come to this? Or that to turn or bring them to
this Condition was not, even admitting our Adversaries Interpretation,
as principal a Part of _Paul_’s Ministry as any other? Since then our
Adversaries do take this Place for _Water-baptism_, as indeed it is,
we may lawfully, taking it so also, urge it upon them. Why the Word
_Baptism_ and _Baptizing_ is used by the Apostle, where that of _Water_
and not of the _Spirit_ is only understood, shall hereafter be spoken
to. [Sidenote: Part 2.] I come now to consider the Reasons alleged by
such as plead for _Water-baptism_, which are also the Objections used
against the Discontinuance of it.

§. VIII. [Sidenote: Obj. 1.] _First_, Some object, [117]_That Christ,
who had the Spirit above Measure, was notwithstanding baptized with
Water_. As _Nic. Arnoldus_ against this _Thesis_, Sect. 46. of his
_Theological Exercitation_.

[117] John 3. 34.

[Sidenote: _Answ._] I _answer_, So was he also _circumcised_; it will
not follow from thence that _Circumcision_ is to continue: [Sidenote:
_Why _Christ_ was _baptized_ by _John.] For it behoved Christ to
fulfil all Righteousness, not only the Ministry of _John_, but the
_Law_ also, therefore did he observe the _Jewish Feasts_ and _Rites_,
and keep the _Passover_. It will not thence follow that _Christians_
ought to do so now; and therefore Christ, _Matt._ iii. 15. gives _John_
this Reason of his being baptized, desiring him to _suffer it to be so
now_; whereby he sufficiently intimates that he intended not thereby to
perpetuate it as an Ordinance to his Disciples.

[Sidenote: Obj. 2.] _Secondly_, They object, _Matt._ xxviii. 19. _Go
ye therefore and teach all Nations, baptizing them in the Name of the
Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost_.

[Sidenote: _Answ._] This is the great Objection, and upon which they
build the whole _Superstructure_; whereunto the first general and sound
_Answer_ is, by granting the whole; [Sidenote: _What Baptism _Christ_
doth mean in _Mat. 28.] but putting them to prove that _Water_ is
here meant, since the Text is silent of it. And though in Reason it
be sufficient upon our Part that we concede the whole expressed in
the Place, but deny that it is by _Water_, which is an Addition to
the Text, yet I shall premise some Reasons why we do so, and then
consider the Reasons alleged by those that will have _Water_ to be here

[Sidenote: Arg. 1.] The _First_ is a Maxim yielded to by all, _That we
ought not to go from the literal Signification of the Text, except some
urgent Necessity force us thereunto_.

But no urgent Necessity in this Place forceth us thereunto:

Therefore we ought not to go from it.

[Sidenote: Arg. 2.] _Secondly_, That Baptism which Christ commanded his
Apostles was the one Baptism, _id est_, his own Baptism:

But the one Baptism, which is Christ’s Baptism, is not with _Water_, as
we have already proved:

Therefore the Baptism commanded by Christ to his Apostles was not

[Sidenote: Arg. 3.] _Thirdly_, That Baptism which Christ commanded his
Apostles was such, that as many as were therewith baptized did put on

But this is not true of _Water-baptism_:

Therefore, _&c._

[Sidenote: Arg. 4.] _Fourthly_, The Baptism commanded by Christ to his
Apostles was not _John_’s Baptism:

But Baptism with Water was _John_’s Baptism:

Therefore, _&c._

[Sidenote: Alleg. 1.] But _First_, They allege, _That Christ’s Baptism,
though a Baptism with Water, did differ from _John_’s, because _John_
only baptized with Water unto Repentance, but Christ commands his
Disciples to baptize in the Name of the Father, Son, and Holy Ghost;
reckoning that in this Form there lieth a great Difference betwixt the
Baptism of _John_ and that of _Christ.

I _answer_, In that _John_’s Baptism was unto Repentance, the
Difference lieth not there, because so is Christ’s also; yea, our
Adversaries will not deny but that _adult Persons_ that are to be
baptized ought, ere they are admitted to _Water-baptism_, to repent,
and confess their Sins: And that _Infants_ also, with a Respect to and
Consideration of their Baptism, ought to repent and confess; so that
the Difference lieth not here, since this of Repentance and Confession
agrees as well to _Christ_’s as to _John_’s Baptism. But in this our
_Adversaries_ are divided; for _Calvin_ will have _Christ_’s and
_John_’s to be all one, _Inst. Lib. 4. Cap. 15. Sect. 7, 8._ yet they
do differ, and the Difference is, in that the one is by Water, the
other not, _&c._

_Secondly_, As to what Christ saith, in commanding them to _baptize
in the Name of the Father, Son, and Spirit_, I confess that states
the Difference, and it is great; but that lies not only in admitting
_Water-baptism_ in this different Form, by a bare Expressing of these
Words: For as the Text says no such Thing, neither do I see how it can
be inferred from it. [Sidenote: _Of the Name of the Lord how taken in
Scripture._] For the Greek is [Greek: eis to onoma: εις το ονομα],
that is, _into the Name_; now the _Name_ of the _Lord_ is often taken
in Scripture for something else than a bare Sound of Words, or literal
Expression, even for his _Virtue_ and _Power_, as may appear from
_Psal._ liv. 3. _Cant._ i. 3. _Prov._ xviii. 10. and in many more.
[Sidenote: _The _Baptism_ into the _Name_, what it is._] Now that the
Apostles were by their Ministry to baptize the Nations _into this
Name_, _Virtue_, and _Power_, and that they did so, is evident by these
Testimonies of _Paul_ above-mentioned, where he saith, _That as many
of them as were baptized into Christ, have put on Christ_; this must
have been a _Baptizing into the Name_, i. e. _Power_ and _Virtue_, and
not a mere formal Expression of Words adjoined with Water-baptism;
because, as hath been above observed, it doth not follow as a natural
or necessary Consequence of it. I would have those who desire to have
their Faith built upon no other Foundation than the Testimony of
_God’s Spirit_, and _Scriptures_ of _Truth_, throughly to consider
whether there can be any Thing further alleged for this Interpretation
than what the Prejudice of Education and Influence of Tradition hath
imposed. Perhaps it may stumble the unwary and inconsiderate _Reader_,
as if the very Character of _Christianity_ were abolished, to tell him
plainly that this Scripture is not to be understood of _baptizing with
Water_, and that this Form of _Baptizing in the Name of the Father,
Son, and Spirit_, hath no Warrant from _Matt._ xxviii. _&c._

[Sidenote: _Whether Christ did prescribe a Form of_ Baptism _in_ Matt.
28.] For which, besides the Reason taken from the Signification of
[_the Name_] as being the _Virtue_ and _Power_ above expressed, let
it be considered, that if it had been a _Form_ prescribed by Christ
to his Apostles, then surely they would have made use of that Form in
the administering of _Water-baptism_ to such as they baptized with
Water; but though particular Mention be made in divers Places of the
_Acts_ who were baptized, and how; and though it be particularly
expressed that they _baptized_ such and such, as _Acts_ ii. 41. and
viii. 12, 13. 38. and ix. 18. and x. 48. and xvi. 15. and xviii. 8.
yet there is not a Word of this Form. And in two Places, _Acts_ viii.
16. and xix. 5. it is said of some that they were _baptized in the
Name of the Lord Jesus_; by which it yet more appears, that either
the Author of this _History_ hath been very defective, who having so
often Occasion to mention this, yet omitteth so substantial a Part of
_Baptism_ (which were to accuse the _Holy Ghost_, by whose Guidance
_Luke_ wrote it) or else that the Apostles did no Ways understand that
_Christ_ by his Commission, _Matt._ xxviii. did enjoin them such a Form
of _Water-baptism_, seeing they did not use it. And therefore it is
safer to conclude, that what they did in administering _Water-baptism_,
they did not by Virtue of that Commission, else they would have so
used it; for our Adversaries I suppose would judge it a great _Heresy_
to administer _Water-baptism_ without that, or only in the _Name of
Jesus_, without Mention of _Father_, or _Spirit_, as it is expresly
said they did, in the two Places above-cited.

[Sidenote: Alleg. 2.] _Secondly_, They say, _If this were not
understood of_ Water-baptism, _it would be a Tautology, and all one
with_ Teaching.

[Sidenote: _Answ._] I say, _Nay: Baptizing with the Spirit_ is somewhat
further than teaching, or informing the Understanding; [Sidenote:
_How Teaching and Baptizing differ._] for it imports a _Reaching
to_, and _melting the Heart_, whereby it is _turned_, as well as the
_Understanding informed_. Besides, we find often in the Scripture, that
_Teaching_ and _Instructing_ are put together, without any Absurdity,
or needless Tautology; and yet these two have a greater Affinity than
_Teaching_ and _Baptizing_ with the _Spirit_.

[Sidenote: Alleg. 3.] _Thirdly_, They say, _Baptism in this Place must
be understood with _Water_, because it is the Action of the Apostles;
and so cannot be the Baptism of the Spirit, which is the Work of
Christ, and his Grace; not of Man_, &c.

[Sidenote: _Answ._] [Sidenote: _The Baptism with the _Spirit_ ascribed
to godly Men as Instruments._] I answer; _Baptism with the Spirit_,
though not wrought without _Christ_ and his _Grace_, is instrumentally
done by Men fitted of God for that Purpose; and therefore no Absurdity
follows, that _Baptism_ with the _Spirit_ should be expressed as the
Action of the Apostles. For though it be Christ by his Grace that
gives _spiritual Gifts_, yet the Apostle, _Rom._ i. 11. speaks of HIS
_imparting to them spiritual Gifts_; and he tells the _Corinthians_,
that HE had _begotten them through the Gospel_, 1 Cor. iv. 15. And
yet to beget People to the _Faith_, is the Work of _Christ_ and his
_Grace_, not of Men. To convert the Heart, is properly the Work of
Christ; and yet the Scripture oftentimes ascribes it to Men, as being
the Instruments: And since _Paul_’s Commission was, _To turn People
from Darkness to Light_ (though that be not done without _Christ_
co-operating by his Grace) so may also _Baptizing with the Spirit_ be
expressed, as performable by Man as the Instrument, though the Work of
_Christ_’s _Grace_ be needful to concur thereunto. So that it is no
Absurdity to say, That the Apostles did administer the _Baptism_ of the

[Sidenote: Alleg. 4.] _Lastly_, They say, _That since Christ saith
here, that he will be with his Disciples to the End of the World,
therefore _Water-baptism_ must continue so long_.

[Sidenote: _Answ._] If he had been speaking here of Water-baptism, then
that might have been urged; but seeing that is denied, and proved to be
false, nothing from thence can be gathered: He speaking of the Baptism
of the _Spirit_, which we freely confess doth remain to the End of the
World; yea, so long as Christ’s Presence abideth with his Children.

§. IX. [Sidenote: Obj. 3.] _Thirdly_, They object _the constant
Practice of the Apostles in the Primitive Church, who_, they say,
_did always administer _Water-baptism_ to such as they converted to
the Faith of Christ; and hence also they further urge that of _Matt.
xxviii._ to have been meant of _Water_; or else the Apostles did not
understand it, because in _baptizing_ they used _Water_; or that in so
doing they walked without a Commission_.

[Sidenote: _Answ._] I _answer_, That it was the _constant Practice
of the Apostles_, is denied; for we have shewn, in the Example of
_Paul_, that it was not so; since it were most absurd to judge that
he converted only those few, even of the Church of _Corinth_, whom
he saith he baptized; nor were it less absurd to think that that was
a _constant apostolick Practice_, which he, who was not inferior to
the chiefest of the Apostles, and who declares he laboured as much as
they all, rejoiceth he was so little in. But further; the Conclusion
inferred from the Apostles Practice of _baptizing with Water_, to
evince that they understood _Matt._ xxviii. of Water-baptism, doth
not hold: [Sidenote: _How the _Apostles_ baptized._] For though they
baptized with Water, it will not follow that either they did it by
Virtue of that Commission, or that they mistook that Place; nor can
there be any _Medium_ brought, that will infer such a Conclusion.
As to the other insinuated Absurdity, _That they did it without a
Commission_; it is none at all: For they might have done it by a
_Permission_, as being in use before _Christ’s Death_; and because
the People, nursed up with outward Ceremonies, could not be weaned
wholly from them. And thus they used other Things, as _Circumcision_,
and _legal Purifications_, which yet they had no Commission from
Christ to do: To which we shall speak more at Length in the following
_Proposition_, concerning the _Supper_.

[Sidenote: Object.] But if from the _Sameness_ of the Word, because
Christ bids them _baptize_, and they afterwards in the Use of Water are
said to _baptize_, it be judged probable _that they did understand that
Commission_, Matt. xxviii. _to authorize them to baptize with_ Water,
_and accordingly practised it_;

[Sidenote: _Answ._] Although it should be granted, that for a Season
they did so far mistake it, as to judge that _Water_ belonged to that
Baptism, (which however I find no Necessity of granting) yet I see
not any great Absurdity would thence follow. For it is plain they did
mistake that Commission, as to a main Part of it, for a Season; as
where he bids them _Go, teach all Nations_; since some Time after they
judged it unlawful to teach the _Gentiles_; [Sidenote: _The Apostles
did scruple the Teaching the _Gentiles.] yea, _Peter_ himself
scrupled it, until by a Vision constrained thereunto; for which, after
he had done it, he was for a Season (until they were better informed)
judged by the rest of his Brethren. Now, if the Education of the
Apostles as _Jews_, and their Propensity to adhere and stick to the
_Jewish Religion_, did so far influence them, that even after Christ’s
_Resurrection_, and the _Pouring forth_ of the _Spirit_, they could not
receive nor admit of the Teaching of the _Gentiles_, though Christ, in
his Commission to them, commanded them to preach to them; what further
Absurdity were it to suppose, that, through the like Mistake, the
chiefest of them having been the Disciples of _John_, and his Baptism
being so much prized there among the _Jews_, they also took Christ’s
Baptism, intended by him of the Spirit, to be that of Water, which was
_John_’s, and accordingly practised it for a Season? It suffices us,
that if they were so mistaken, (though I say not that they were so)
they did not always remain under that Mistake: Else _Peter_ would not
have said of the Baptism which now saves, _That it is not a putting
away of the Filth of the Flesh_, which certainly Water-baptism is.

But further, They urge much _Peter_’s baptizing _Cornelius_; in which
they press two Things, First, _That Water-baptism is used, even to
those that had received the Spirit_. Secondly, _That it is said
positively, He commanded them to be baptized_, Acts x. 47, 48.

But neither of these doth necessarily infer Water-baptism to belong to
the _New Covenant Dispensation_, nor yet to be a perpetual standing
_Ordinance_ in the Church. [Sidenote: _Whether _Peter_’s baptizing
some with Water makes it a standing Ordinance to the Church._] For
_First_, All that this will amount to, was, That _Peter_ at that Time
baptized these Men; but that he did it by Virtue of that Commission,
_Matt._ xxviii. remains yet to be proved. And how doth the Baptizing
with Water, after the Receiving of the Holy Ghost, prove the Case, more
than the Use of _Circumcision_, and other _legal Rites_, acknowledged
to have been performed by him afterwards? Also, it is no Wonder if
_Peter_, who thought it so strange (notwithstanding all that had been
professed before, and spoken by Christ) that the _Gentiles_ should be
made Partakers of the Gospel, and with great Difficulty, not without
an extraordinary Impulse thereunto, was brought to come to them, and
eat with them, was apt to put this Ceremony upon them; which being,
as it were, the particular Dispensation of _John_, the _Forerunner_
of Christ, seemed to have greater Affinity with the Gospel, than the
other _Jewish Ceremonies_ then used by the _Church_; but that will no
ways infer our Adversaries Conclusion. _Secondly_, As to these Words,
_And he commanded them to be baptized_; it declareth Matter of _Fact_,
not of _Right_, and amounteth to no more, than that _Peter_ did at
that Time, _pro hic & nunc_, command those Persons to be _baptized
with Water_, which is not denied: But it saith nothing that _Peter_
commanded Water-baptism to be a standing and perpetual Ordinance to the
Church; neither can any Man of sound Reason say, if he heed what he
says, That a Command in _Matter of Fact_ to particular Persons, doth
infer the _Thing commanded_ to be of general Obligation to all, if it
be not otherwise founded upon some positive Precept. Why doth _Peter_’s
commanding _Cornelius_ and his Houshold to be baptized at that Time
infer _Water-baptism_ to continue, more than his constraining (which is
more than commanding) the _Gentiles_ in General to be _circumcised_,
and observe the _Law_? We find at that Time, when _Peter_ baptized
_Cornelius_, it was not yet determined whether the _Gentiles_ should
not be _circumcised_; but on the contrary, it was the most general
Sense of the _Church_ that _they should_: And therefore no Wonder if
they thought it needful at that Time that they should be baptized;
which had more Affinity with the Gospel, and was a Burthen less

§. X. [Sidenote: Obj. 4.] _Fourthly_, They object _from the
Signification of the Word _[baptize]_ which is as much as to _dip_ and
_wash_ with _Water_; alleging thence that the very Word imports a being
baptized with_ Water.

[Sidenote: _Answ._] This Objection is very weak. [Sidenote: Baptizing
_signifies Dipping or Washing with Water._] For since _baptizing_ with
Water was a Rite among the _Jews_, as _Paulus Riccius_ sheweth, even
before the Coming of _John_; and that the Ceremony received that Name
from the Nature of the Practice, as used both by the _Jews_ and by
_John_; yet we find that Christ and his Apostles frequently make use of
these Terms to a more spiritual Signification. _Circumcision_ was only
used and understood among the _Jews_ to be _that of the Flesh_; but
the Apostle tells us of the _Circumcision of the Heart and Spirit made
without Hands_. So that though Baptism was used among the _Jews_ only
to signify a _Washing with Water_, yet both _John_, Christ, and his
Apostles, speak of a being _baptized with the Spirit, and with Fire_;
which they make the peculiar Baptism of Christ, as contra-distinguished
from that of _Water_, which was _John_’s, as is above shewn. So that
though Baptism among the _Jews_ was only understood of _Water_, yet
among _Christians_ it is very well understood of the _Spirit_ without
_Water_: As we see Christ and his Apostles spiritually to understand
Things, under the Terms of what had been _Shadows_ before. Thus
Christ, speaking of his _Body_, (though the _Jews_ mistook him) said,
_Destroy this Temple, and in three Days I will raise it up_; and many
more that might be instanced. But if the _Etymology_ of the Word
should be tenaciously adhered to, it would militate against most of
our Adversaries, as well as against us: [Sidenote: [Greek: Baptizô:
Βαπτιζω] _immergo_, _intingo_, to plunge and dip in.] For the Greek
[Greek: Baptizô: Βαπτιζω] signifies _immergo_, that is, to _plunge_
and _dip in_; and that was the proper Use of Water-baptism among the
_Jews_, and also by _John_, and the primitive Christians, who used it;
whereas our Adversaries, for the most Part, only _sprinkle_ a little
Water upon the Forehead, which doth not at all answer to the Word
[_Baptism._] [Sidenote: _Those that of old used _Water-baptism_ were
_dipped_ and _plunged_, and those that were only _sprinkled_, were
not admitted to any Office in the Church, _and why.] Yea, those of
old among Christians that used Water-baptism, thought this _Dipping_
or _Plunging_ so needful, that they thus _dipped_ Children: And
forasmuch as it was judged that it might prove hurtful to some weak
Constitutions, _Sprinkling_, to prevent that Hurt, was introduced; yet
then it was likewise appointed, that such as were only _sprinkled_, and
not _dipped_, should not be admitted to have any Office in the Church,
as not being sufficiently _baptized_. So that if our Adversaries will
stick to the Word, they must alter their Method of _Sprinkling_.

[Sidenote: Obj. 5.] _Fifthly_, They object, _John_ iii. 5. _Except a
Man be born of _Water_, and of the _Spirit_, &c. hence inferring the
Necessity of _Water-baptism_, as well as of the Spirit_.

[Sidenote: _Answ._] But if this prove any Thing, it will prove
Water-baptism to be of absolute Necessity; and therefore _Protestants_
rightly affirm, when this is urged upon them by _Papists_, to evince
the absolute Necessity of Water-baptism, that [_Water_] is not here
understood of outward Water; [Sidenote: _The Water that regenerates,
is mystical and inward_.] but mystically, of an inward Cleansing and
Washing. Even as where Christ speaks of being _baptized with Fire_,
it is not to be understood of outward material Fire, but only of
purifying, by a _Metonymy_; because to _purify_ is a proper Effect of
Fire, as to _wash_ and _make clean_ is of Water; where it can as little
be so understood, as where we are said to be _saved by the Washing of
Regeneration_, Tit. iii. 5. Yea, _Peter_ saith expresly, in the Place
often cited, as _Calvin_ well observes, [118]_That the _Baptism_ which
saves, is not the putting away of the Filth of the Flesh_. So that
since [_Water_] cannot be understood of outward Water, this can serve
nothing to prove Water-baptism.

[118] In the 4th Book of his _Instit._ C. 15.

[Sidenote: Object.] If it be said, That [_Water_] _imports here_
necessitatem præcepti, _though not_ medii;

[Sidenote: _Answ._] I _answer_, That is first to take it for granted
that outward Water is here understood; the contrary whereof we have
already proved. [Sidenote: _Necessitas præcepti _and_ medii _urged.]
Next, _Water_ and the _Spirit_ are placed here together, [_Except a
Man be born of_ Water _and the_ Spirit] where the Necessity of the
one is urged as much as of the other. Now if the Spirit be absolutely
necessary, so will also Water; and then we must either say, that _to be
born of the Spirit_ is not absolutely necessary, which all acknowledge
to be false; or else, that _Water_ is absolutely necessary; which,
as _Protestants_, we affirm, and have proved, is false: Else we must
confess, that _Water_ is not here understood of outward Water. For to
say that when _Water_ and the _Spirit_ are placed here just together,
and in the same Manner, though there be not any Difference or Ground
for it visible in the Text, or deducible from it, That the _Necessity_
of _Water_ is here _præcepti_, but not _medii_, but the _Necessity_ of
the _Spirit_ is both _medii_ and _præcepti_, is indeed confidently to
affirm, but not to prove.

[Sidenote: Obj. 6.] _Sixthly_ and _lastly_, They object, _That the
Baptism of Water is a visible Sign or Badge to distinguish_ Christians
_from_ Infidels, _even as Circumcision did the_ Jews.

[Sidenote: _Answ._] I _answer_, This saith nothing at all, unless
it be proved to be a _necessary Precept_, or Part of the _New
Covenant Dispensation_; it not being lawful for us to impose outward
_Ceremonies_ and _Rites_, and say, They will distinguish us from
_Infidels_. [Sidenote: _Circumcision a Seal of the first Covenant._]
_Circumcision_ was positively commanded, and said to be a _Seal of the
first Covenant_; but as we have already proved that there is no such
Command for Baptism, [Sidenote: _Water-baptism falsely called a_ Badge
_of Christianity._] so there is not any Word in all the New Testament,
calling it a _Badge of Christianity_, or _Seal of the New Covenant_:
And therefore to conclude it is so, because _Circumcision_ was so,
(unless some better Proof be alleged for it) is miserably to beg the
Question. [Sidenote: _Which is the _Badge_ of Christianity._] _The
Professing of Faith in Christ, and a holy Life answering thereunto,
is a far better _Badge_ of _Christianity_ than any outward Washing_;
which yet answers not to that of _Circumcision_, since that affixed a
Character in the Flesh, which this doth not: So that a Christian is not
known to be a Christian by his being _baptized_, especially when he was
a Child, unless he tell them so much: [Sidenote: _What the _Fathers_
say of Water-baptism, and of the Sign of the Cross._] And may not the
Professing of _Faith in Christ_ signify that as well? I know there are
divers of those called the _Fathers_, that speak much of Water-baptism,
calling it _Characterem Christianitatis_: But so did they also of
the Sign of the _Cross_, and other such Things, justly rejected by
_Protestants_. [Sidenote: Heathenish _Ceremonies introduced into the
Christian Worship._] For the _Mystery of Iniquity_, which began to
work in the Apostles Days, soon spoiled the Simplicity and Purity of
the Christian Worship; insomuch that not only many _Jewish Rites_ were
retained, but many _Heathenish Customs_ and _Ceremonies_ introduced
into the Christian Worship; as particularly that Word [_Sacrament_.] So
that it is a great Folly, especially for _Protestants_, to plead any
Thing of this from _Tradition_ or _Antiquity_; For we find that neither
_Papists_ nor _Protestants_ use those Rites exactly as the _Ancients_
did; who in such Things, not walking by the most certain Rule of God’s
Spirit, but doting too much upon Externals, were very uncertain. For
most of them all, in the primitive Times, did wholly _plunge_ and _dip_
those they baptized, which neither _Papists_, nor most _Protestants_,
do: Yea, several of the _Fathers_ accused some as _Hereticks_ in their
Days, for holding some Principles common with _Protestants_ concerning
it; as particularly _Augustine_ doth the _Pelagians_, for saying that
_Infants dying unbaptized may be saved_. And the _Manichees_ were
condemned, for denying that _Grace is Universally given by Baptism_;
and _Julian_ the _Pelagian_ by _Augustine_, for denying _Exorcism
and Insufflation in the Use of Baptism_: [Sidenote: _Exorcism or
Adjuration._] All which Things _Protestants_ deny also. So that
_Protestants_ do but foolishly to upbraid us, as if we could not shew
any among the _Ancients_ that denied _Water-baptism_; seeing they
cannot shew any, whom they acknowledge not to have been heretical in
several Things, that used it; [Sidenote: _The Sign of the Cross._] nor
yet, who using it, did not also use the _Sign of the Cross_, and other
Things with it, which they deny. [Sidenote: _Many in _former Ages_
testified against _Water-baptism.] There were some nevertheless in
the darkest Times of _Popery_, who testified against _Water-baptism_.
For one _Alanus_, Page 103, 104. 107. speaks of some in his Time
that were burnt for the denying of it: For they said, That _Baptism
had no Efficacy, either in Children or adult Persons; and therefore
Men were not obliged to take Baptism: _Particularly _ten Canonicks_,
so called, _were burnt for that Crime, by the Order of King_ Robert
_of_ France. And _P. Pithœus_ mentions it in his _Fragments_ of
the _History_ of _Guienne_, which is also confirmed by one _Johannes
Floracensis_, a _Monk_, who was famous at that Time, in his Epistle to
_Oliva_, Abbot of the _Ausonian_ Church: “I will, saith he, give you
to understand concerning the Heresy that was in the City of _Orleans_
on _Childermas-day_; [Sidenote: _Ten Canonicks burnt at _Orleans_, and
why._] for it was true, if ye have heard any Thing, that King _Robert_
caused to be burnt alive near fourteen of that City, of the chief of
their _Clergy_, and the more noble of their _Laicks_, who were hateful
to God, and abominable to Heaven and Earth; for they did stifly deny
the Grace of holy Baptism, and also the Consecration of the Lord’s Body
and Blood.” The Time of this Deed is noted in these Words by _Papir.
Masson_, in his _Annals_ of _France_, Lib. 3. in _Hugh_ and _Robert_,
_Actum Aureliæ publicè anno Incarnationis Domini 1022. Regni _Roberti_
Regis 28, Indictione 5. quando _Stephanus_ Hæresiarcha & Complices ejus
damnati sunt et exusti Aureliæ_.

Now for their calling them _Hereticks_ and _Manichees_, we have nothing
but the Testimony of their Accusers, which will no more invalidate
their Testimony for this Truth against the Use of Water-baptism, or
give more Ground to charge us, as being one with _Manichees_, than
because some, called by them _Manichees_, do agree with _Protestants_
in some Things, that therefore _Protestants_ are _Manichees_ or
_Hereticks_, which _Protestants_ can no Ways shun. For the Question is,
Whether, in what they did, they walked according to the Truth testified
of by the Spirit in the Holy Scriptures? So that the Controversy is
brought back again to the Scriptures, according to which, I suppose, I
have already discussed it.

[Sidenote: _The _Baptism_ of _Infants_ an Human Tradition._] As for
the latter Part of the _Thesis_, denying the Use of _Infant-baptism_,
it necessarily follows from what is above said. For if Water-baptism
be ceased, then surely _Baptizing of Infants_ is not warrantable. But
those that take upon them to oppose us in this Matter, will have more
to do as to this latter Part: For after they have done what they can
to prove Water-baptism, it remains for them to prove that _Infants_
ought to be baptized. For he that proves Water-baptism ceased,
proves that Infant-baptism is vain: But he that should prove that
Water-baptism continues, has not thence proved that Infant-baptism is
necessary; that needs something further. And therefore it was a pitiful
Subterfuge of _Nic. Arnoldus_ against this, to say, That _the Denying
of Infant-baptism belonged to the Gangrene of the_ Anabaptists, without
adding any further Proof.


Concerning the COMMUNION, or PARTICIPATION of the BODY and BLOOD of

[119]_The _Communion_ of the Body and Blood of Christ is _inward_ and
    _spiritual_, which is the Participation of his Flesh and Blood, by
    which the _inward Man_ is daily nourished in the Hearts of those
    in whom Christ dwells. Of which Things the _Breaking of Bread_ by
    Christ with his Disciples was a _Figure_, which even they who had
    received the Substance used in the Church for a Time, for the Sake
    of the Weak; [120]even as _abstaining from Things strangled_, and
    _from Blood_, _the Washing one another’s Feet_, and the _Anointing
    of the Sick with Oil_: All which are commanded with no less
    Authority and Solemnity than the former; yet seeing they are but
    _Shadows_ of better Things, they cease in such as have obtained the

[119] 1 Cor. 10. 16, 17. John 6. 32. 33. 35. 1 Cor. 5. 8.

[120] Acts 15. 20. John 13. 14. James 5. 14.

§. I. The _Communion_ of the Body and Blood of Christ is a _Mystery_
hid from all natural Men, in their first fallen and degenerate State,
which they cannot understand, reach to, nor comprehend, as they there
abide; neither, as they there are, can they be Partakers of it, nor
yet are they able to _discern the Lord’s Body_. And forasmuch as
the _Christian World_ (so called) for the most Part hath been still
labouring, working, conceiving and imagining, in their own natural
and unrenewed Understandings, about the Things of God and Religion;
therefore hath this _Mystery_ been much hid and sealed up from them,
while they have been contending, quarrelling and fighting one with
another about the mere Shadow, Outside, and Form, but Strangers to the
Substance, Life and Virtue.

§. II. [Sidenote: _The _Body_ and _Blood_ of Christ is spiritual._]
The _Body_ then of Christ, which Believers partake of, is _spiritual_,
and not _carnal_; and his _Blood_, which they drink of, is _pure_
and _heavenly_, and not _human_ or _elementary_, as _Augustine_ also
affirms of the _Body of Christ_, which is eaten, in his _Tractat._
Psal. xcviii. _Except a Man eat my Flesh, he hath not in him Life
eternal_: And he saith, _The Words which I speak unto you are Spirit
and Life; understand spiritually what I have spoken. Ye shall not eat
of this Body which ye see, and drink this Blood which they shall spill,
who crucify me--I am the living Bread, who have descended from Heaven.
He calls himself the Bread, who descended from Heaven, exhorting that
we might believe in him_, &c.

[Sidenote: Object.] If it be asked then, _What that _Body_, what that
_Flesh_ and _Blood_ is?_

[Sidenote: _Answ._] I _answer_, It is that _Heavenly Seed_, that
_divine, spiritual, celestial Substance_, of which we spake before in
the _fifth_ and _sixth Propositions_. [Sidenote: _What the _heavenly
Seed_ is, whereby formerly, and also now, _Life_ and _Salvation_ was
and is communicated._] This is that _spiritual Body of Christ_, whereby
and through which he communicateth _Life to Men_, and _Salvation to
as many as believe in him_, and _receive him_; and whereby also Man
comes to have Fellowship and Communion with God. This is proved from
the 6th of _John_, from Verse 32. to the End, where Christ speaks
more at large of this Matter, than in any other Place: And indeed
this _Evangelist_ and _beloved Disciple_, who lay in the Bosom of our
Lord, gives us a more full Account of the _spiritual Sayings_ and
_Doctrine_ of Christ than any other; and it is observable, that though
he speaks nothing of the _Ceremony_ used by Christ of _breaking Bread
with his Disciples_, neither in his evangelical Account of Christ’s
_Life and Sufferings_, nor in his Epistles; yet he is more large in
this Account of the _Participation_ of the Body, Flesh and Blood of
Christ, than any of them all. For Christ, in this Chapter, perceiving
that the _Jews_ did follow him for Love of the _Loaves_, desires them
(Verse 27) to _labour not for the Meat which perisheth, but for that
Meat which endureth for ever_: But forasmuch as they, being carnal in
their Apprehensions, and not understanding the spiritual Language and
Doctrine of Christ, did judge the _Manna_, which _Moses_ gave their
Fathers, to be the most excellent Bread, as coming from Heaven; Christ,
to rectify that Mistake, and better inform them, affirmeth, _First_,
That _it is not Moses, but his _Father_, that giveth the true _Bread_
from Heaven_, Ver. 32. and 48. _Secondly_, This Bread _he calls_
himself, Ver. 35. I _am the _Bread_ of Life_: And Ver. 51. I _am the_
living Bread, _which came down from Heaven_. _Thirdly_, He declares
that this Bread is his Flesh, Ver. 51. The Bread _that I will give, is
my Flesh_; and Ver. 55. _For my Flesh is Meat indeed, and my Blood is
Drink indeed._ _Fourthly_, The Necessity of partaking thereof. Ver. 53.
_Except ye eat the Flesh of the Son of Man, and drink his Blood, ye
have no Life in you._ And _Lastly_, The blessed Fruits and necessary
Effects of this Communion of the Body and Blood of Christ. Ver. 33.
_This _Bread_ giveth Life to the World._ Ver. 50. _He that eateth
thereof, dieth not._ Ver. 58. _He that eateth of this _Bread_, shall
live for ever._ Ver. 54. _Whoso eateth this Flesh, and drinketh this
Blood, shall live for ever._ Ver. 56. _And he dwelleth in Christ, and
Christ in him._ Ver. 57. _And shall live by Christ._ [Sidenote: _The
Origin, Nature and Effects of the Body, Flesh and Blood of Christ._]
From this large Description of the Origin, Nature, and Effects of
this _Body_, _Flesh_ and _Blood of_ Christ, it is apparent that it is
spiritual, and to be understood of a spiritual Body, and not of that
Body, or Temple of Jesus Christ, which was born of the Virgin _Mary_,
and in which he walked, lived, and suffered in the Land of _Judea_;
because it is said, that it _came down from Heaven_, yea, that it
is he that _came down from Heaven_. Now all Christians at present
generally acknowledge, that the outward Body of Christ came not down
from Heaven; neither was it that Part of Christ which came down from
Heaven. And to put the Matter out of Doubt, when the carnal _Jews_
would have been so understanding it, he tells them plainly, Ver. 63.
_It is the Spirit that quickeneth, but the Flesh profiteth Nothing._
[Sidenote: _Solid Reasons that it is his spiritual Body Christ speaks
of._] This is also founded upon most sound and solid Reason; because
it is the Soul, not the Body, that is to be nourished by this Flesh
and Blood. Now outward Flesh cannot nourish nor feed the Soul; there
is no Proportion nor Analogy betwixt them; neither is the Communion
of the Saints with God by a Conjunction and mutual Participation of
Flesh, but of the Spirit: [121]_He that is joined to the Lord is one
Spirit, _not_ one Flesh_. For the Flesh (I mean outward Flesh, even
such as was that wherein Christ lived and walked when upon Earth;
and not Flesh, when transformed by a _Metaphor_, to be understood
spiritually) can only partake of Flesh, as Spirit of Spirit: As the
Body cannot feed upon Spirit, neither can the Spirit feed upon Flesh.
And that the Flesh here spoken of is spiritually to be understood,
appears further, inasmuch as that which feedeth upon it shall never
die: But the Bodies of all Men once die; yea, it was necessary that
the Body of Christ himself should die. That this Body, and spiritual
Flesh and Blood of Christ, is to be understood of that _divine_ and
_heavenly Seed_, before spoken of by us, appears both by the Nature
and Fruits of it. _First_, it is said, _It is that which cometh down
from Heaven, and giveth Life unto the World_: Now this answers to that
_Light_ and _Seed_, which is testified of, _John_ i. to be the _Light
of the World, and the Life of Men_. [Sidenote: _This spiritual Light
and Seed is as Bread to the hungry Soul._] For that _spiritual Light_
and _Seed_, as it receives Place in Men’s Hearts, and Room to spring
up there, is as Bread to the hungry and fainting Soul, that is (as it
were) buried and dead in the Lusts of the World; which receives Life
again, and revives, as it tasteth and partaketh of this heavenly Bread:
And they that partake of it are said to come to Christ; neither can
any have it, but by coming to him, and believing in the Appearance of
his _Light_ in their Hearts; by receiving which, and believing in it,
the Participation of this Body and Bread is known. And that Christ
understands the same Thing here by his Body, Flesh and Blood, which
is understood, _John_ i. by the _Light enlightening every Man_, and
the _Life_, &c. appears; for the _Light_ and _Life_, spoken of _John_
i. is said to be _Christ_; _He is the true Light_: And the _Bread_
and _Flesh_, &c. spoken of in _John_ vi. is called _Christ_; I _am
the_ Bread _of Life_, saith he. Again, _They that received that Light
and Life_, John i. 12. _obtained Power to become the Sons of God, by
believing in his Name_: So also here, _John_ vi. 35. _He that cometh
unto this _Bread_ of Life shall not hunger; and he that believes in
him, who is this _Bread_, shall never thirst_. [Sidenote: _Christ’s
outward and spiritual Body distinguished._] So then, as there was the
outward visible Body and Temple of Jesus Christ, which took its Origin
from the Virgin _Mary_; there is also the spiritual Body of Christ, by
and through which He that was the _Word in the Beginning with God_,
and was and is GOD, did reveal himself to the Sons of Men in all Ages,
and whereby Men in all Ages come to be made Partakers of _eternal
Life_, and to have Communion and Fellowship with God and Christ.
[Sidenote: _The Patriarchs did eat of the Body of Christ_.] Of which
Body of Christ, and Flesh and Blood, if both _Adam_, and _Seth_, and
_Enoch_, and _Noah_, and _Abraham_, and _Moses_, and _David_, and all
the Prophets and holy Men of God, had not eaten, they had not had Life
in them; nor could their inward Man have been nourished. Now as the
outward Body and Temple was called Christ, so was also his spiritual
Body, no less properly, and that long before that outward Body was in
Being. Hence the Apostle saith, 1 _Cor._ x. 3, 4. That the _Fathers did
all eat the same spiritual Meat, and did all drink the same spiritual
Drink_: [_For they drank of that spiritual Rock that followed them, and
that Rock was Christ._] This cannot be understood otherwise than of
this spiritual Body of Christ; which spiritual Body of Christ, though
it was the saving Food of the Righteous both before the _Law_ and
under the _Law_; yet under the _Law_ it was veiled and shadowed, and
covered under divers Types, Ceremonies and Observations; yea, and not
only so, but it was veiled and hid, in some Respect, under the outward
Temple and Body of Christ, or during the Continuance of it; so that the
_Jews_ could not understand Christ’s Preaching about it while on Earth:
[122]And not the _Jews_ only, but many of his Disciples, judging it
an _hard Saying, murmured at it_; _and many from that Time went back
from him, and walked no more with him_. I doubt not but that there are
many also at this Day, professing to be the Disciples of Christ, that
do as little understand this Matter as those did, and are as apt to be
offended, and stumble at it, while they are gazing and following after
the outward Body; and look not to that by which the Saints are daily
fed and nourished. [Sidenote: _The divine Light of Christ doth make the
Saints Partakers of his Body._] For as Jesus Christ, in Obedience to
the Will of the Father, did by the _eternal Spirit offer up that _Body_
for a Propitiation _for the_ Remission of Sins_, and finished his
Testimony upon Earth thereby, in a most perfect Example of Patience,
Resignation and Holiness, that all might be made Partakers of the Fruit
of that Sacrifice; so hath he likewise poured forth _into the Hearts
of all Men_ a Measure of that _divine Light_ and _Seed_ wherewith he
is clothed; that thereby, reaching unto the Consciences of all, he may
raise them up out of _Death_ and _Darkness_ by his _Life_ and _Light_,
and thereby they may be made Partakers of his Body, and therethrough
come to have Fellowship with the Father and with the Son.

[121] 1 Cor. 6. 17.

[122] John 6. 60. 66.

§. III. [Sidenote: Quest.] If it be asked, _How and after what Manner
Man comes to partake of it, and to be fed by it?_

[Sidenote: _Answ._] I _answer_ in the plain and express Words of
Christ, I _am the _Bread_ of Life_, saith he; [123]_he that cometh to
me shall never hunger; he that believeth in me shall never thirst_. And
again, _For my Flesh is Meat indeed, and my Blood is Drink indeed_.
So whosoever thou art that askest this Question, or readest these
Lines, whether thou accountest thyself a Believer, or really feelest,
by a certain and sad Experience, that thou art yet in the Unbelief,
and findest that the outward Body and Flesh of Christ is so far from
thee, that thou canst not reach it, nor feed upon it; yea, though thou
hast often swallowed down and taken in that which the _Papists_ have
persuaded thee to be the real Flesh and Blood of Christ, and hast
believed it to be so, though all thy Senses told thee the Contrary;
[Sidenote: _The _Lutherans_ and _Calvinists_ Opinions of the Flesh and
Blood of Christ in the _Supper_ so called._] or (being a _Lutheran_)
hast taken that Bread, in and with and under which the _Lutherans_
have assured thee that the Flesh and Blood of Christ is; or (being a
_Calvinist_) hast partaken of that which the _Calvinists_ say (though
a Figure only of the Body) gives them who take it a real Participation
of the Body, Flesh, and Blood of Christ, though they never knew how
nor what Way; I say, if for all this thou findest thy Soul yet barren,
yea, hungry, and ready to starve, for want of something thou longest
for; _know_ that that _Light_ which discovers thy Iniquity to thee,
which shews thee thy Barrenness, thy Nakedness, thy Emptiness, is
that _Body_ which thou must partake of, and feed upon: But that till
by forsaking Iniquity thou turnest to it, comest unto it, receivest
it, though thou mayest hunger after it, thou canst not be satisfied
with it; [124]for it hath no _Communion with Darkness, nor canst thou
drink of the Cup of the Lord, and the Cup of Devils: And be Partaker of
the Lord’s Table, and the Table of Devils_, 1 Cor. x. 21. [Sidenote:
_How the inward Man is nourished._] But as thou sufferest that small
_Seed of Righteousness_ to arise in thee, and to be formed into a
Birth, that new substantial Birth, which is brought forth in the Soul,
supernaturally feeds upon and is nourished by this spiritual Body;
yea, as this outward Birth lives not but as it draws in Breath by the
outward elementary Air, so this new Birth lives not in the Soul, but as
it draws in and breathes by that spiritual Air or Vehicle. And as the
outward Birth cannot subsist without some outward Body to feed upon,
some outward Flesh, and some outward Drink, so neither can this inward
Birth, unless it be fed by this inward Flesh and Blood of Christ, which
answers to it after the same Manner, by Way of Analogy. And this is
most agreeable to the Doctrine of Christ concerning this Matter. For
as without outward Food the natural Body hath not Life, so also saith
Christ, [125]_Except ye eat the Flesh of the Son of Man, and drink his
Blood, ye have no Life in you_. And as the outward Body, eating outward
Food, lives thereby, so Christ saith, [126]That _he that eateth him
shall live by him_. So it is this inward Participation of this _inward
Man_, of this _inward_ and _spiritual Body_, by which Man is united to
God, and has Fellowship and Communion with him. [127]_He that eateth
my Flesh, and drinketh my Blood_, saith Christ, _dwelleth in me, and I
in him_. This cannot be understood of outward eating of outward Bread;
and as by this the Soul must have Fellowship with God, so also, so far
as all the Saints are Partakers of this _one Body_ and _one Blood_,
they come also to have a _joint Communion_. Hence the Apostle, 1 _Cor._
x. 17. in this Respect saith, That they [128]_being many, are one_
Bread, _and one_ Body; and to the Wise among the _Corinthians_ he saith,
[Sidenote: _The true spiritual Supper of the Lord._] _The _Bread_ which
we break is the Communion of the Body of Christ_. This is the _true_
and _spiritual Supper_ of the Lord, which Men come to partake of, by
hearing the Voice of Christ, and opening the Door of their Hearts,
and so letting him in in the Manner abovesaid, according to the plain
Words of the Scripture, _Rev._ iii. 20. _Behold I stand at the Door
and knock; if any Man hear my Voice, and open the Door, I will come in
to him, and will sup with him, and he with me_. So that the _Supper of
the Lord_, and the _supping_ with the Lord, and partaking of his Flesh
and Blood, is no Ways limited to the Ceremony of _breaking Bread_ and
_drinking Wine_ at particular Times, but is truly and really enjoyed,
as often as the Soul retires into the Light of the Lord, and feels and
partakes of that heavenly Life by which the inward Man is nourished;
which may be and is often witnessed by the Faithful at all Times,
though more particularly when they are assembled together to wait upon
the Lord.

[123] John 6. 35. _and_ 55.

[124] 1 Cor. 6. 14.

[125] John 6. 53.

[126] John 6. 57.

[127] John 6. 56.

[128] 1 Cor. 10. Verse 16.

§. IV. But what Confusion the Professors of Christianity have run into
concerning this Matter, is more than obvious; who, as in most other
Things they have done, for want of a true spiritual Understanding,
have sought to tie this _Supper_ of the Lord to that Ceremony used
by Christ before his Death, of _breaking Bread_ and _drinking Wine_
with his Disciples. [Sidenote: _Man is not tied to the Ceremony of
_breaking Bread_ and _drinking Wine_ which Christ did use with his
Disciples, this only was a Shadow._] And though they for the most Part
agree generally in this, yet how do they contend and debate one against
another! How strangely are they pinched, pained, and straitened to make
the spiritual Mystery agree to that Ceremony! And what monstrous and
wild Opinions and Conceptions have they invented, to inclose or affix
the Body of Christ to their _Bread_ and _Wine_? From which Opinion not
only the greatest, and fiercest, and most hurtful Contests, both among
the Professors of Christianity in general, and among _Protestants_ in
particular, have arisen; [Sidenote: _What makes the Christian Religion
hateful to the _Jews_, _Turks_, and _Heathens.] but also such
Absurdities, irrational and blasphemous Consequences have ensued, as
make the Christian Religion odious and hateful to _Jews_, _Turks_, and
_Heathens_. The Professors of Christianity do chiefly divide in this
Matter into three Opinions.

[Sidenote: _The _Papists_ Faith of Christ’s Flesh._] The _First_ is of
those that say, _The Substance of the Bread is transubstantiated into
the very Substance of that same Body, Flesh, and Blood of_ Christ,
_which was born of the Virgin_ Mary, _and crucified by the_ Jews; so
that after the _Words of Consecration_, as they call them, _it is no
more Bread, but the Body of_ Christ.

[Sidenote: _The _Lutherans_ Faith._] The _Second_ is of such who say,
_The Substance of the Bread remains, but that also that Body is in, and
with, and under the Bread_; so that _both the Substance of Bread, and
of the Body, Flesh, and Blood of _Christ_, is there also_.

[Sidenote: _The _Calvinists_ Faith._] The _Third_ is of those, that,
denying both these, do affirm, _That the Body of _Christ_ is not
there corporally or substantially, but yet that it is really and
sacramentally received by the Faithful in the Use of Bread and Wine_;
but how or what Way it is there, _they know not, nor can they tell;
only we must believe it is there, yet so that it is only properly in

It is not my Design to enter into a Refutation of these several
Opinions; for each of their Authors and Assertors have sufficiently
refuted one another, and are all of them no less strong both from
Scripture and Reason in refuting each their contrary Parties Opinion,
than they are weak in establishing their own. For I often have
seriously observed, in reading their respective Writings, and so it
may be have others, that all of them do notably, in so far as they
refute the contrary Opinions; but that they are mightily pained, when
they come to confirm and plead for their own. Hence I necessarily
must conclude, that none of them had attained to the Truth and
Substance of this _Mystery_. Let us see if _Calvin_,[129] after he
had refuted the two former Opinions, be more successful in what he
affirms and asserts for the Truth of his Opinion, who, after he hath
much laboured in overturning and refuting the two former Opinions,
plainly confesseth, that he knows not what to affirm instead of them.
[Sidenote: J. Calvin_’s faith of Christ’s Flesh and Blood uncertain._]
For after he has spoken much, and at last concluded, _That the Body
of Christ is there, and that the Saints must needs partake thereof_,
at last he lands in these Words, _Sect. 32_. “But if it be asked me
how it is? I shall not be ashamed to confess, that it is a Secret too
high for me to comprehend in my Spirit, or explain in Words.” Here he
deals very ingenuously; and yet who would have thought that such a
Man would have been brought to this Streight in the Confirming of his
Opinion? considering that a little before, in the same Chapter, _Sect.
15._ he accuseth the School-men among the _Papists_, and I confess
truly, [Sidenote: _The like the _Papists.] _In that they neither
understand nor explain to others how Christ is in the Eucharist_,
which shortly after he confesseth himself he cannot do. If then the
School-men among the _Papists_ do neither understand nor yet explain to
others their Doctrine in this Matter, nor _Calvin_ can comprehend it
in his Spirit, which I judge is as much as not to understand it, nor
express it in Words, and then surely he cannot explain it to others,
then no Certainty is to be had from either of them. There have been
great Endeavours used for Reconcilement in this Matter, both betwixt
_Papists_ and _Lutherans_, _Lutherans_ and _Calvinists_, yea, and
_Calvinists_ and _Papists_, but all to no Purpose; and many Forms and
Manners of Expressions drawn up, to which all might yield; which in the
End proved in vain, seeing every one understood them, and interpreted
them in their own Way; and so they did thereby but equivocate and
deceive one another. The Reason of all this Contention is, because
they had not a clear Understanding of the _Mystery_, and were doting
about _Shadows_ and _Externals_. For both the Ground and Matter of
their _Contest_ lies in Things extrinsick from, and unnecessary to,
the main Matter. [Sidenote: _Satan busies People in _outward Signs_,
_Shadows_, and _Forms_, whilst they neglect the _Substance.] And
this hath been often the Policy of _Satan_, to busy People, and amuse
them with outward Signs, Shadows, and Forms, making them contend about
that, while in the mean Time the _Substance_ is neglected; yea, and
in contending for these Shadows he stirs them up to the Practice of
Malice, Heat, Revenge, and other Vices, by which he establisheth his
Kingdom of Darkness among them, and ruins the Life of Christianity. For
there have been more Animosities and Heats about this one Particular,
and more Bloodshed and Contention, than about any other. [Sidenote:
_What hath been hurtful to the_ Reformation.] And surely they are
little acquainted with the State of _Protestant Affairs_, who know
not that their Contentions about this have been more hurtful to the
_Reformation_ than all the Opposition they met with from their common
Adversaries. [Sidenote: _Two _Errors_ the Ground of the Contention
about the _Supper.] Now all those uncertain and absurd Opinions,
and the Contentions therefrom arising, have proceeded from their all
agreeing in two general Errors concerning this Thing; which being
denied and receded from, as they are by us, there would be an easy Way
made for _Reconciliation_, and we should all meet in one spiritual and
true Understanding of this _Mystery_: And as the Contentions, so would
also the Absurdities which follow from all the three fore-mentioned
Opinions, cease and fall to the Ground.

[129] Inst. Lib. 4. Cap. 17.

The _First_ of these _Errors_ is, In making the Communion or
Participation of the Body, Flesh, and Blood of Christ to relate to that
outward Body, Vessel, or Temple, that was born of the Virgin _Mary_,
and walked and suffered in _Judea_; whereas it should relate to the
Spiritual Body, Flesh, and Blood of Christ, even that _heavenly_ and
_celestial Light_ and _Life_, which was the Food and Nourishment of the
Regenerate in all Ages, as we have already proved.

The _Second Error_ is, In tying this Participation of the Body and
Blood of Christ to that Ceremony used by him with his Disciples in the
Breaking of Bread, _&c._ as if it had only a Relation thereto, or were
only enjoyed in the Use of that Ceremony, which it neither hath nor is.
For this is that Bread which Christ in his Prayer teaches to call for,
terming it [Greek: ton arton ton epiousion: τον αρτον τον επιουσιον],
i. e. the _Super-substantial Bread_, as the Greek hath it, and which
the Soul partakes of, without any Relation or necessary Respect to this
Ceremony, as shall be hereafter proved more at Length.

These _two Errors_ being thus laid aside, and the Contentions arising
therefrom buried, all are agreed in the main Positions, _viz._ _First_,
[Sidenote: Believers Souls _do really feed upon the Flesh and Blood of_
Christ.] That the _Body, Flesh, and Blood of Christ is necessary for
the nourishing of the Soul_. _Secondly_, That the _Souls of Believers
do really and truly partake and feed upon the Body, Flesh, and Blood
of Christ_. But while Men are not content with the Spirituality of
this _Mystery_, going in their own Wills, and according to their own
Inventions, to strain and wrest the Scriptures to tie this spiritual
Communion of the Flesh and Blood of Christ to outward Bread and
Wine, and such like carnal Ordinances, no Wonder if by their carnal
Apprehensions they run into Confusion. But because it hath been
generally supposed that the Communion of the Body and Blood of Christ
had some special Relation to the Ceremony of _breaking Bread_, I shall
first refute that Opinion, and then proceed to consider the Nature and
Use of that _Ceremony_, and whether it be now _necessary_ to continue;
answering the Reasons and Objections of such as plead its Continuance
as a necessary and standing Ordinance of Jesus Christ.

§. V. [Sidenote: I.] _First_, It must be understood that I speak of a
necessary and peculiar Relation otherwise than in a general Respect:
For inasmuch as our Communion with Christ is and ought to be our
greatest and chiefest Work, we ought to do all other Things with a
Respect to God, and our Fellowship with him; [Sidenote: _That the
Communion of the _Body_ and _Blood_ of _Christ_ has no special Relation
to the Ceremony of _breaking Bread_, neither by Nature nor Precept._]
but a special and necessary Respect or Relation is such as where the
two Things are so tied and united together, either _of their own
Nature_, or _by the Command of God_, that the one cannot be enjoyed, or
at least is not, except very extraordinarily, without the other. Thus
_Salvation_ hath a necessary Respect to _Holiness_, because _without
Holiness no Man shall see God_; and the _Eating of the Flesh and Blood
of_ Christ hath a necessary Respect to our having Life, because if we
_eat not his Flesh, and drink not his Blood_, we cannot have _Life_;
and our _feeling of God’s Presence_ hath a necessary Respect to our
being found meeting in his Name by divine Precept, because he has
promised, _Where two or three are met together in his Name, he will
be in the Midst of them_. In like Manner our receiving _Benefits_ and
_Blessings from God_ has a necessary Respect to our _Prayer_, because
if _we ask_, he hath promised _we shall receive_. Now the Communion or
Participation of the _Flesh and Blood of Christ_ hath no such necessary
Relation to the _breaking of Bread_ and _drinking of Wine_; for if it
had any such necessary Relation, it would either be from the _Nature of
the Thing_, or from some _divine Precept_; but we shall shew it is from
neither: Therefore, _&c._

_First_, It is not from the _Nature of it_; because to partake of the
Flesh and Blood of Christ is a spiritual Exercise, and all confess that
it is by the Soul and Spirit that we become real Partakers of it, as
it is the Soul, and not the Body, that is nourished by it. But to eat
Bread and drink Wine is a natural Act, which in itself adds nothing
to the Soul, neither has any Thing that is spiritual in it; because
the most carnal Man that is can as fully, as perfectly, and as wholly
eat Bread and drink Wine as the most spiritual. _Secondly_, Their
Relation is not _by Nature_, else they would infer one another; but all
acknowledge that many eat of the Bread and drink of the Wine, even that
which they say is _consecrate_ and _transubstantiate into the very Body
of Christ_, who notwithstanding have not Life eternal, have not Christ
dwelling in them, nor do live by him, as all do who truly partake of
the Flesh and Blood of Christ without the Use of this Ceremony, as all
the _Patriarchs_ and _Prophets_ did before this Ordinance, as they
account it, was instituted. [Sidenote: _The Patriarchs and Prophets,
without this Ceremony’s Use, were true Partakers of Christ’s Flesh and
Blood._] Neither was there any Thing under the Law that had any direct
or necessary Relation hereunto; though to partake of the Flesh and
Blood of Christ in all Ages was indispensably necessary to Salvation.
[Sidenote: _The Paschal _Lamb_ its End._] For as for the _Paschal
Lamb_, the whole End of it is signified particularly, _Exod._ xiii. 8,
9. to wit, _That the_ Jews _might thereby be kept in Remembrance of
their Deliverance out of_ Egypt.

_Secondly_, It hath not Relation by _divine Precept_; for if it had,
it would be mentioned in that which our Adversaries account the
Institution of it, or else in the Practice of it by the Saints recorded
in Scripture; but so it is not. For as to the _Institution_, or rather
_Narration_, of Christ’s Practice in this Matter, we have it recorded
by the Evangelists _Matthew_, _Mark_, and _Luke_.[130] In the first two
there is only an Account of the Matter of Fact, to wit, _That _Christ_
brake Bread, and gave it to his Disciples to eat, saying, This is my
Body; and blessing the Cup, he gave it them to drink, saying, This is
my Blood_; but nothing of any Desire to them to do it. In the last,
after the _Bread_ (but before the _Blessing_, or giving them the
_Wine_) he bids them _do it in Remembrance of him_. [Sidenote: _The
_Institution_ of the _Supper_, or Narration of _Christ’s Practice_
therein._] What we are to think of this Practice of Christ shall be
spoken of hereafter. But what necessary Relation hath all this to the
Believers partaking of the Flesh and Blood of Christ? The End of this
for which they were to do it, if at all, is to _remember_ Christ;
which the Apostle yet more particularly expresses, 1 _Cor._ xi. 26.
_to shew forth the Lord’s Death_; but to _remember the Lord_, or
_declare his Death_, which are the special and particular Ends annexed
to the Use of this Ceremony, is not at all to partake of the Flesh and
Blood of Christ; neither have they any more necessary Relation to it
than any other two different spiritual Duties. For though they that
partake of the _Flesh and Blood of_ Christ cannot but remember him,
yet the Lord and his Death may be remembered, as none can deny, where
his Flesh and Blood is not truly partaken of. So that since the very
particular and express End of this Ceremony may be witnessed, to wit,
the Remembrance of the Lord’s Death, and yet the Flesh and Blood of
Christ not partaken of, it cannot have had any necessary Relation to
it, else the Partaking thereof would have been the End of it, and could
not have been attained without this Participation. But on the contrary,
we may well infer hence, that since the positive End of this Ceremony
is not the Partaking of the Flesh and Blood of Christ, and that whoever
partakes of the Flesh and Blood of Christ cannot but remember him, that
therefore such need not this Ceremony to put them in Remembrance of him.

[130] Matt. 26. 17. Mark 14. 22. Luke 22. 19.

[Sidenote: Object.] But if it be said, _That _Jesus Christ_ calls the
Bread here his _Body_, and the Wine his _Blood_, therefore he seems to
have had a special Relation to his Disciples partaking of his Flesh and
Blood in the Use of this Thing_;

[Sidenote: _Answ._] I _answer_, His calling the Bread his _Body_, and
the Wine his _Blood_, would yet infer no such Thing; though it is not
denied but that Jesus Christ, in all Things he did, yea, and from
the Use of all natural Things, took Occasion to raise the Minds of
his Disciples and Hearers to Spirituals. [Sidenote: _The Woman of_
Samaria, John 4. 14.] Hence from the Woman of _Samaria_ her drawing
_Water_, he took Occasion to tell her of that _living Water_, which
_whoso drinketh of shall never thirst_; which indeed is all one with
his _Blood_ here spoken of; [Sidenote: _The _Well_, the _Loaves_, the
_Bread_ and _Wine_, Christ takes Occasion from, to shew the _inward
Feeling.] yet it will not follow that _that Well_ or _Water_ had
any necessary Relation to the _living Water_, or the _living Water_
to it, _&c._ So Christ takes Occasion, from the _Jews_ following him
for the _Loaves_, to tell them of this _spiritual Bread_ and _Flesh_
of his Body, which was more necessary for them to feed upon; it will
not therefore follow that their following him for the _Loaves_ had any
necessary Relation thereunto. So also Christ here, being at Supper with
his Disciples, takes Occasion, from the _Bread_ and _Wine_ which was
before them, to signify unto them, That as that _Bread_ which he brake
unto them, and that _Wine_ which he blessed and gave unto them, did
contribute to the Preserving and Nourishing of their Bodies, so was he
also to give his _Body_ and shed his _Blood_ for the _Salvation_ of
their _Souls_. And therefore the very End proposed in this Ceremony to
those that observe it is, to be a _Memorial of his Death_.

But if it be said, _That the Apostle, _1 Cor. x. 16._ calls the Bread
which he brake the Communion of the Body of Christ, and the Cup the
Communion of his Blood_;

I do most willingly subscribe unto it; but do deny that this is
understood of the outward Bread, neither can it be evinced, but the
contrary is manifest from the Context: For the Apostle in this Chapter
speaks not one Word of that Ceremony; for having in the Beginning
of it shewn them how the _Jews_ of old were made Partakers of the
_spiritual Food_ and _Water_, which was Christ, and how several of
them, through _Disobedience_ and _Idolatry_, fell from that good
Condition, he exhorts them, by the Example of those _Jews_ whom God
destroyed of old, to flee those Evils; shewing them that they, to wit,
the _Corinthians_, are likewise Partakers of the _Body and Blood_ of
Christ; of which Communion they would rob themselves if they did Evil,
because _they could not drink of the Cup of the Lord and the Cup of
Devils, and partake of the Lord’s Table and the Table of Devils_, Ver.
21. which shews that he understands not here the using of outward Bread
and Wine; because those that do drink the _Cup of Devils_, and eat of
the _Table of Devils_, yea, the wickedest of Men, may partake of the
outward Bread and outward Wine. [Sidenote: _The wickedest may take the
outward Bread and Wine._] For there the Apostle calls the Bread _one_,
Ver. 17. and he saith, _We being many, are one Bread, and one Body; for
we are all Partakers of that one Bread_. Now if the Bread be _one_, it
cannot be the _outward_, or the _inward_ would be excluded; whereas it
cannot be denied but that it is the Partaking of the _inward Bread_,
and not the _outward_, that makes the Saints truly _one Body_ and _one
Bread_. And whereas they say, That the _one Bread_ here comprehendeth
both the _outward_ and _inward_, by Virtue of the _sacramental Union_;
[Sidenote: _The _sacramental Union_ pretended, a _Figment.] that
indeed is to affirm, but not to prove. As for that _Figment_ of a
_sacramental Union_, I find not such a Thing in all the _Scripture_,
especially in the _New Testament_; nor is there any Thing can give a
Rise for such a Thing in this Chapter, where the Apostle, as is above
observed, is not at all treating of that _Ceremony_, but only, from the
Excellency of that Privilege which the _Corinthians_ had, as believing
Christians, _to partake of the Flesh and Blood_ of Christ, dehorts them
from _Idolatry_, and partaking of the Sacrifices offered to _Idols_, so
as thereby to offend or hurt their weak Brethren.

[Sidenote: Object.] But that which they most of all _cry out_ for in
this Matter, and are always _urging_, is from 1 _Cor._ xi. where the
Apostle is particularly treating of this Matter, and therefore, from
some Words here, they have the greatest Appearance of Truth for their
Assertion, as Ver. 27. where he calls the _Cup_ the _Cup of the Lord_;
and saith, _That they who eat of it and drink it unworthily, are
guilty of the Body and Blood of the Lord_; and Ver. 29. _Eat and drink
their own Damnation_; intimating hence, that this hath an immediate or
necessary Relation to the Body, Flesh, and Blood of Christ.

[Sidenote: _Answ._] Though this at first View may catch the Unwary
Reader, yet being well considered, it doth no Ways evince the Matter
in Controversy. As for the _Corinthians_ being in the Use of this
Ceremony, why they were so, and how that obliges not Christians now to
the same, shall be spoken of hereafter: It suffices at this Time to
consider that they were in the Use of it. _Secondly_, That in the Use
of it they were guilty of and committed divers Abuses. _Thirdly_, That
the Apostle here is giving them Directions how they may do it aright,
in shewing them the right and proper Use and End of it.

These Things being premised, let it be observed, That the very express
and particular Use of it, according to the Apostle, is _to shew forth
the Lord’s Death_, &c. But _to shew forth the Lord’s Death, and partake
of the Flesh and Blood of_ Christ, are different Things. He saith not,
_As often as ye eat this Bread, and drink this Cup, ye partake of the
Body and Blood of_ Christ; but, _ye shew forth the Lord’s Death_. So
I acknowledge, _That this Ceremony_, by those that practise it, hath
an _immediate Relation_ to the _outward Body_ and _Death of_ Christ
upon the _Cross_, as being properly a Memorial of it; but it doth not
thence follow that it hath any _inward_ or _immediate Relation to
Believers communicating or partaking of the spiritual Body and Blood
of _Christ_, or that spiritual Supper_ spoken of _Rev._ iii. 20. For
though, in a general Way, as every religious Action in some Respect
hath a common Relation to the spiritual Communion of the Saints with
God, so we shall not deny but this hath a Relation as others. Now for
his calling _the Cup the Cup of the Lord_, and saying, _They are guilty
of the Body and Blood of _Christ_, and eat their own [131]Damnation
in not discerning the Lord’s Body_, &c. I _answer_, That this infers
no more necessary Relation than any other religious Act, and amounts
to no more than this, That since the _Corinthians_ were in the Use of
this Ceremony, and so performed it as a religious Act, they ought to do
it worthily, or else they should bring Condemnation upon themselves.
Now this will not more infer the Thing so practised by them to be a
necessary-religious Act obligatory upon others, than when the Apostle
saith, _Rom._ xiv. 6. _He that regardeth the Day, regardeth it unto
the Lord_, it can be thence inferred that the Days that some esteemed
and observed did lay an Obligation upon others to do the same. But
yet, as he that esteemed a Day, and placed Conscience in keeping it,
was to _regard it to the Lord_, and so it was to him, in so far as he
dedicated it unto the Lord, the _Lord’s Day_, he was to do it worthily;
and if he did it unworthily, he would be guilty of the _Lord’s Day_,
and so keep it to his own Damnation; so also such as observe this
_Ceremony of Bread and Wine_, it is to them the _Bread of the Lord_,
and _the Cup of the Lord_, because they use it as a religious Act; and
forasmuch as their End therein is to _shew forth the Lord’s Death_, and
_remember his Body_ that was crucified for them, and his _Blood_ that
was shed for them, if, notwithstanding, they believe it is their Duty
to do it, and make it a Matter of Conscience to forbear, if they do
it without that due Preparation and Examination which every religious
Act ought to be performed in, then, instead of truly remembering the
Lord’s Death, and his Body and his Blood, they render themselves
guilty of it, as being in one Spirit with those that crucified him,
and shed his Blood, though pretending with Thanksgiving and Joy to
remember it. [Sidenote: _The _Pharisees_ guilty of the Blood of the
_Prophets.] Thus the _Scribes_ and _Pharisees_ of old, though in
Memory of the Prophets they garnished their Sepulchres, yet are said
by Christ to be _guilty of their Blood_. And that no more can be hence
inferred, appears from another Saying of the same Apostle, _Rom._ xiv.
23. _He that doubteth is damned if he eat_, &c. where he, speaking of
those that judged it unlawful to eat Flesh, _&c._ saith, _If they eat
doubting, they eat their own Damnation_. Now it is manifest from all
this, that either the doing or forbearing of this was to another, that
placed no Conscience in it, of no Moment. So I say, he that eateth that
which in his Conscience he is persuaded it is not lawful for him to
eat, doth eat his own _Damnation_; so he also that placeth Conscience
in eating Bread and Wine _as a religious Act_, if he do it unprepared,
and without that due respect wherein such Acts should be gone about,
he _eateth and drinketh his own Damnation, not discerning the Lord’s
Body_, i. e. not minding what he doth, to wit, _with a special Respect
to the Lord, and by Way of special Commemoration of the Death of

[131] Or _Judgment_, as the Greek Word properly signifies.

§. VI. Having now sufficiently shewn what the true Communion of the
Body and Blood of Christ is, how it is partaken of, and how it has
no necessary Relation to that Ceremony of Bread and Wine used by
Christ with his Disciples; [Sidenote: II. _Whether this Ceremony be a
necessary Part of the New Covenant, and Obligatory._] it is fit now
to consider the _Nature_ and _Constitution_ of that _Ceremony_ (for
as to the _proper Use_ of it, we have had Occasion to speak before)
whether it be a _standing Ordinance_ in the Church of Christ obligatory
upon all, or indeed whether it be any necessary Part of the Worship of
the _New Covenant Dispensation_, or hath any better or more binding
Foundation than several other Ceremonies appointed and practised about
the same Time, which the most of our Opposers acknowledge to be ceased,
and now no Ways binding upon Christians. We find this Ceremony only
mentioned in Scripture in four Places, to wit, _Matthew_, _Mark_,
and _Luke_, and by _Paul_ to the _Corinthians_. If any would infer
any Thing from the Frequency of the mentioning of it, that will add
nothing; for it being a Matter of Fact, is therefore mentioned by
the Evangelists; and there are other Things less memorable as often,
yea, oftener mentioned. _Matthew_ and _Mark_ give only an Account of
the Matter of Fact, without any Precept to do so afterwards; simply
declaring, [132]That Jesus at that Time did desire them to _eat of the
Bread, and drink of the Cup_; to which _Luke_ adds these Words, _This
do in Remembrance of me_. If we consider this Action of Christ with his
Apostles, there will appear nothing singular in it, for a Foundation
to such a strange _Superstructure_, as many in their airy Imaginations
have sought to build upon it; for both _Matthew_ and _Mark_ express it
as an Act done by him as he was eating. [Sidenote: _The breaking of
Bread was no singular Thing, but a Custom among the Jews._] _Matthew_
saith, _And as they were eating_; and _Mark_, _And as they did eat,
Jesus took Bread_, &c. Now this Act was no singular Thing, neither
any solemn Institution of a _Gospel Ordinance_; because it was a
constant Custom among the _Jews_, [Sidenote: P. Riccius.] as _Paulus
Riccius_ observes at Length in his _Celestial Agriculture_, that when
they did eat the Passover, the Master of the Family did take Bread,
and bless it, and breaking it, gave of it to the rest; and likewise
taking Wine, did the same; so that there can nothing further appear
in this, than that Jesus Christ, _who fulfilled all Righteousness_,
and also observed the _Jewish Feasts and Customs_, used this also
among his Disciples only, that as in most other Things he laboured to
draw their Minds to a further Thing, so in the Use of this he takes
Occasion to put them in Mind of his Death and Sufferings, which were
shortly to be; which he did the oftener inculcate unto them, for that
they were averse from believing it. [Sidenote: What it is _to do this
in Remembrance of Christ._] And as for that Expression of _Luke_, _Do
this in Remembrance of me_, it will amount to no more than this, that
being the last Time that Christ did eat with his Disciples, he desired
them, that in their eating and drinking they might have Regard to him,
and by the Remembering of that Opportunity, be the more stirred up to
follow him diligently through Sufferings and Death, _&c._ But what Man
of Reason, laying aside the Prejudice of Education, and the Influence
of Tradition, will say, That this Account of the _Matter of Fact_
given by _Matthew_ and _Mark_, or this Expression of _Luke_, to _Do
that in Remembrance of him_, will amount to these Consequences, which
the Generality of Christians have sought to draw from it; as calling
it, _Augustissimum Eucharistiæ Sacramentum_; _venerabile Altaris
Sacramentum_; _the principal Seal of the Covenant of Grace, by which
all the Benefits of Christ’s Death are sealed to Believers_; and such
like Things? But to give a further Evidence, how these Consequences
have not any Bottom from the Practice of that Ceremony, nor from the
Words following, _Do this_, &c. let us consider another of the like
Nature, as it is at Length expressed by _John_, Chap. xiii. 3, 4.
8. 13, 14, 15. [Sidenote: _Christ’s washing of Feet, and its Manner
related._] _Jesus riseth from Supper, and laid aside his Garments, and
took a Towel, and girded himself: After that, he poureth Water into a
Bason, and began to wash the Disciples’ Feet; and to wipe them with the
Towel wherewith he was girded: _Peter_ said unto him, Thou shalt never
wash my Feet; _Jesus_ answered him, If I wash thee not, thou hast no
Part with me. So after he had washed their Feet,--he said, Know ye what
I have done to you? If I then your Lord and Master have washed your
Feet, ye also ought to wash one another’s Feet: For I have given you
an Example, that ye should do as I have done to you._ As to which, let
it be observed, that _John_ relates this Passage to have been done at
the same Time with the other of _breaking Bread_; [Sidenote: _Compared
with the _breaking_ of _Bread.] both being done the Night of the
_Passover_, after Supper. If we regard the Narration of this, and the
Circumstances attending it, it was done with far more Solemnity, and
prescribed far more punctually and particularly than the former. It
is said only, _As he was eating, he took Bread_; so that this would
seem to be but an _occasional Business_: But here _he rose up_, _he
laid by his Garments_, _he girded himself_, _he poured out the Water_,
_he washed their Feet_, _he wiped them with a Towel_: He did this to
all of them; which are Circumstances surely far more observable than
those noted in the other. The _former_ was a Practice common among the
_Jews_, used by all Masters of Families upon that Occasion; but _this_,
as to the Manner, and Person acting it, _to wit_, for the Master to
rise up, and wash the Feet of his Servants and Disciples, was more
singular and observable. In the breaking of _Bread_, and giving of
Wine, it is not pleaded by our Adversaries, nor yet mentioned in the
Text, that he particularly put them into the Hands of all; but breaking
it, and blessing it, gave it the nearest, and so they from Hand to
Hand: But here it is mentioned, that he washed not the Feet of one or
two, but of many. He saith not in the _former_, _That if they do not
eat of that Bread, and drink of that Wine, they shall be prejudiced by
it_; but here he saith expresly to _Peter_, That _if he wash him not,
he hath no Part with him_; which being spoken upon _Peter_’s refusing
to let him wash his Feet, would seem to import no less, than not the
Continuance only, but even the Necessity of this _Ceremony_. In the
former he saith, as it were passingly, _Do this in Remembrance of me_;
but here he sitteth down again, he desires them to consider what he
hath done, tells them positively, [Sidenote: _The washing one another’s
Feet was left as an Example._] _That as he hath done to them, so ought
they to do to one another_: And yet again, he redoubles that Precept,
by telling them, _He has given them an Example, that they should do
so likewise_. If we respect the Nature of the Thing, it hath as much
in it as either _Baptism_ or the _breaking of Bread_; seeing it is an
outward Element of a cleansing Nature, applied to the outward Man, by
the Command and the Example of Christ, to signify an inward Purifying.
I would willingly propose this seriously to Men, who will be pleased
to make use of that Reason and Understanding that God hath given them,
and not be imposed upon, nor abused by the Custom or Tradition of
others; _Whether this Ceremony, if we respect either the Time that it
was appointed in, or the Circumstances wherewith it was performed, or
the Command enjoining the Use of it, hath not as much to recommend it
for a standing Ordinance of the Gospel, as either _Water-baptism_, or
_Bread_ and _Wine_, or any other of that Kind?_ I wonder then what
Reason the _Papists_ can give, Why they have not numbered it among
their _Sacraments_, except merely _Voluntas Ecclesiæ & Traditio Patrum_.

[132] Matt. 26. 26. Mark 14. 22. Luke 22. 19. 1 Cor. 11. 23. _&c._

[Sidenote: Object.] But if they say, _That it is used among them, in
that the _Pope_, and some other Persons among them, used to do it once
a Year to some poor People_;

[Sidenote: _Answ._] I would willingly know what Reason they have why
this should not be extended to all, as well as that of the _Eucharist_
(as they term it) or whence it appears from the Text, that [_Do this in
Remembrance of me_] should be interpreted that the _Bread_ and _Wine_
were every Day to be taken by all _Priests_, or the _Bread_ every Day,
or every Week, by the _People_; and that that other Command of Christ,
_Ye ought to do as I have done to you_, &c. is only to be understood of
the _Pope_, or some other Persons, to be done only to a few, and that
once a Year? Surely there can be no other Reason for this Difference
assigned from the Text. [Sidenote: _The _Protestants_ use not the
_washing of Feet.] And as to _Protestants_, who use not this Ceremony
at all, if they will but open their Eyes, they may see how that by
Custom and Tradition they are abused in this Matter, as were their
Fathers in divers _Popish_ Traditions. For if we look into the plain
Scripture, what can be thence inferred to urge the one, which may not
be likewise pleaded for the other; or for laying aside the one, which
may not be likewise said against the Continuance of the other? If
they say, _That the former, of washing the Feet, was only a Ceremony_;
what have they, whence they can shew, that this _breaking of Bread_
is more? If they say, _That the former was only a Sign of Humility
and Purifying_; what have they to prove that this was more? If they
say, _That one was only for a Time, and was no Evangelical Ordinance_;
what hath this to make it such, that the other wanted? Surely there
is no Way of Reason to evade this; neither can any Thing be alleged,
that the one should cease, and not the other; or the one continue,
and not the other; but the mere Opinion of the Affirmers, which by
Custom, Education and Tradition, hath begotten in the Hearts of People
a greater Reverence for, and Esteem of the one than the other; which
if it had fallen out to be as much recommended to us by Tradition,
would no Doubt have been as tenaciously pleaded for, as having no less
Foundation in Scripture. But since the former, to wit, _The washing
of one another’s Feet_, is justly laid aside, as not binding upon
_Christians_; so ought also the other for the same Reason.

§. VII. [Sidenote: _The _breaking_ of _Bread_ not used now in the
same Manner as Christ did._] But it is strange that those who are so
clamorous for this _Ceremony_, and stick so much to it, take Liberty to
dispense with the Manner or Method that Christ did it in; since none
that ever I could hear of, except some _Baptists_ who now do it, use it
in the same Way that he did: Christ did it at _Supper_, while they were
eating; but the Generality of _Protestants_ do it in the _Morning_ only
by itself. What Rule walk they by in this Change?

[Sidenote: Object.] If it be said, _These are but Circumstances,
and not the Matter; and if the Matter be kept to, the Alteration of
Circumstances is but of small Moment_;

[Sidenote: _Answ._] What if it should be said the Whole is but a
_Circumstance_, which fell out at that Time when Christ eat the
_Passover_? For if we have Regard to that which alone can be pleaded
for an Institution, _viz._ these Words, _Do this in Remembrance of me_;
it doth as properly relate to the Manner as Matter. For what may or can
they evince in Reason, that these Words, _Do this_, only signify _eat
Bread_, and _drink Wine_, but it is no Matter _when ye eat_, or _how
ye eat it_; and not as _ye have seen me eat it at Supper with you, who
take Bread, and break it, and give it you; and take the Cup, and bless
it, and give it you; so do ye likewise_? And seeing Christ makes no
Distinction in those Words, _Do this_, it cannot be judged in Reason
but to relate to the Whole; which if it do, all those that at present
use this Ceremony among _Christians_, have not yet obeyed this Precept,
nor fulfilled this Institution, for all their Clamours concerning it.

[Sidenote: Object.] If it be said, _That the Time and Manner of
doing it by Christ was but accidentally, as being after the _Jewish
Passover_, which was at Supper_;

[Sidenote: _Answ_.] Besides that it may be answered, and easily proved,
_That the Whole was accidental_, as being the _Practice of a Jewish
Ceremony_, as is above observed; [Sidenote: _The_ breaking _of_ Bread
_was a Jewish Ceremony_.] may it not the same Way be urged, That the
_drinking of Wine is accidental_, as being the natural Product of that
Country; and so be pleaded, That in those Countries where Wine doth
not grow, as in our Nation of _Scotland_, we may make use of _Beer_
or _Ale_ in the Use of this Ceremony; or _Bread made of other Grain_
than that which Christ used? And yet would not our Adversaries judge
this an Abuse, and not right Performing of this _Sacrament_? Yea, have
not Scruples of this Kind occasioned no little Contention among the
Professors of _Christianity_? [Sidenote: _Contests between the _Greek_
and _Latin Churches_, concerning the _leavened_ and _unleavened Bread_
in the _Supper.] What great Contest and Strife hath been betwixt the
_Greek_ and _Latin_ Churches concerning the _Bread_? While the one
will have it _unleavened_, reckoning, because the _Jews_ made use of
_unleavened Bread_ in the _Passover_, that it was such Kind of _Bread_
that Christ did break to his Disciples; the other _leavened_: Therefore
the _Lutherans_ make use of _unleavened Bread_, the _Calvinists_
of _leavened_. [Sidenote: Farellus.] And this Contest was so hot,
when the Reformation was beginning at _Geneva_, that _Calvin_ and
_Farellus_ were forced to fly for it. But do not _Protestants_, by
these Uncertainties, open a Door to _Papists_ for their excluding the
People from the _Cup_? Will not [_Do this_] infer positively, That they
should do it _in the same Manner, and at the same Time_, as Christ did
it; as well as that they should use the _Cup_, and not the _Bread
only_? Or what Reason have they to dispense with the one, more than
the _Papists_ have to do with the other? Oh! What strange Absurdities
and Inconveniencies have _Christians_ brought upon themselves, by
superstitiously adhering to this Ceremony! Out of which Difficulties it
is impossible for them to extricate themselves, but by laying it aside,
as they have done others of the like Nature. [Sidenote: _The _Clergy_
taking Bread do bless, and give it: The _Laity_ must take and eat, not
bless it._] For besides what is above-mentioned, I would gladly know
how from the Words they can be certainly resolved that these Words [_Do
this_] must be understood to the Clergy, _Take, bless, and break this
Bread, and give it to others_; but to the Laity only, _Take and eat_,
but do not _bless_, &c.

[Sidenote: Object.] If it be said, _That the Clergy only were present_;

[Sidenote: _Answ._] Then will not that open a Door for the _Popish
Argument_ against the _Administration of the Cup to the People_? Or
may not another from thence as easily infer, _That the Clergy only
ought to partake of this Ceremony_; because they were the Apostles only
then present, to whom it was said, _Do this_? But if this [_Do this_]
be extended to all, how comes it all have not Liberty to obey it, in
both _blessing_, _breaking_, and _distributing_, as well as _taking_
and _eating_? [Sidenote: _Hot Contests about the Manner of taking
it, and to whom to give it_.] Besides all these, even the _Calvinist
Protestants_ of _Great Britain_ could never yet accord among themselves
about the _Manner of taking it_, whether _sitting_, _standing_, or
_kneeling_; whether it should be given to the _Sick_, and those that
are _ready to die_, or not? Which Controversies, though they may be
esteemed of small Moment, yet have greatly contributed, with other
Things, to be the Occasion, not only of _much Contention_, but also
of _Bloodshed_ and _Devastation_; so that in this last Respect the
_Prelatick Calvinists_ have termed the _Presbyterians_ schismatical
and pertinacious; and they them again superstitious, idolatrous, and
papistical. Who then, that will open their Eyes, but may see that the
Devil hath flirted up this Contention and Zeal, to busy Men about
Things of _small Moment_, that _greater Matters_ may be neglected,
while he keeps them in such ado about this Ceremony; though they lay
aside others of the like Nature, as _positively commanded_, and as
_punctually practised_; and from the Observation of which half so many
Difficulties will not follow?

§. VIII. How then? Have we not Reason, not finding the Nature of this
Practice, to be obligatory upon us, more than those others which our
Adversaries have laid aside, to avoid this Confusion; since those that
use it can never agree, neither concerning the _Nature_, _Efficacy_,
nor _Manner of doing it_? And this proceeds, because they take it not
plainly, as it lies in the Scripture; but have so much intermixed their
own Inventions. For would they take it as it lies, it would import
no more, than that _Jesus Christ at that Time did thereby signify
unto them, that his Body and Blood was to be offered for them_; and
desired them, That _whensoever they did eat or drink, they might do
it in Remembrance of him, or with a Regard to him, whose Blood was
shed for them_. Now that the _Primitive Church_, gathered immediately
after his Ascension, did so understand it, doth appear from their
Use and Practice, if we admit those Places of the _Acts_, where
_breaking of Bread_ is spoken of, to have Relation hereto; [Sidenote:
_By _breaking of Bread_ they had all Things in common, remembering
the Lord._] which as our Adversaries do, so we shall willingly agree
to: As _First_, _Acts_ ii. 42. _And they continued stedfastly in the
Apostles Doctrine and Fellowship, and in breaking of Bread_, &c. This
cannot be understood of any other than of their ordinary eating;
for as nothing else appears from the Text, so the Context makes it
plain; for they had all Things in common: And therefore it is said,
Ver. 46. _And they continuing daily with one Accord in the Temple,
and breaking Bread from House to House, did eat their Meat with
Gladness and Singleness of Heart._ Those who will not wilfully close
their Eyes, may see here, that the _breaking_ being joined with their
_eating_, shews, that nothing else is here expressed, but that having
all Things in common, and so continuing together, they also did break
their Bread, and eat their Meat together: In doing whereof, I cannot
doubt but they remembered the Lord; to follow whom they had, with
so much Zeal and Resignation, betaken themselves. This is further
manifest from _Acts_ vi. 2. for the _Apostles_, having the Care and
Distribution of that Money, which the Believers, having sold their
Possessions, gave unto them, and finding themselves overcharged with
that Burthen, appointed _Deacons_ for that Business, that they might
give themselves continually to _Prayer_, and to the _Ministry of the
Word_; not leaving that, to serve Tables. [Sidenote: Deacons _appointed
for serving Tables._] This cannot be meant of any _sacramental Eating_,
or _religious Acts of Worship_; seeing our Adversaries make the
Distributing of that the proper Act of _Ministers_, not of _Deacons_:
And yet there can be no Reason alleged, That that _breaking of Bread_,
which they are said to have _continued in_, and to have done from
_House to House_, was other than those _Tables_ which the Apostles
served; but here gave over, as finding themselves overcharged with it.
Now as the Increase of the Disciples did incapacitate the Apostles
any more to manage this; so it would seem their further Increase, and
dispersing in divers Places, hindered the Continuance of that Practice
of _having Things in common_: But notwithstanding, so far at least to
remember or continue that _ancient Community_, they did at certain
Times come together, and break Bread together. [Sidenote: _At_ Troas
_the Supper deferred till Midnight_.] Hence it is said, _Acts_ xx. 7.
on _Paul_’s coming to _Troas_, That _upon the fist Day of the Week,
when the Disciples came together to break Bread, _Paul_ preached unto
them, ready to depart on the Morrow, and continued his Speech until
Midnight_. Here is no Mention made of any _sacramental Eating_; but
only that _Paul_ took Occasion from their being together to preach unto
them. And it seems it was a _Supper_ they intended (not a _Morning-bit_
of _Bread_, and _Sup_ of _Wine_) else it is not very probable that
_Paul_ would from the _Morning_ have preached until _Midnight_. But
the 11th Verse puts the Matter out of Dispute, which is thus: _When
he therefore was come up again, and had broken Bread, and eaten, and
talked a long While, even till Break of Day, so he departed_. This
shews, That the _breaking of Bread_ was deferred till that Time; for
these Words [_and when he had broken Bread, and eaten_] do shew, That
it had a Relation to the _breaking of Bread_ before-mentioned, and that
that was the Time he did it. _Secondly_, These Words joined together
[_and when he had broken Bread, and eaten, and talked_] shew, it was
no religious Act of Worship, but only an Eating for bodily Refreshment,
[Sidenote: _They only did eat for refreshing the Body._] for which the
_Christians_ used to meet together some Time; and doing it in _God’s
Fear_, and _Singleness of Heart_, doth notwithstanding difference it
from the Eating or Feasting of _profane Persons_. [Sidenote: _By some
called a_ Love-feast.] And this by some is called a _Love-feast_,
or a being together, not merely to feed their Bellies, or for outward
Ends; but to take thence Occasion to eat and drink together, in the
Dread and Presence of the Lord, as his People; which _Custom_ we shall
not condemn. But let it be observed, That in all the _Acts_ there is
no other nor further Mention of this Matter. But if that _Ceremony_
had been some _solemn Sacrifice_, as some will have it, or such a
_special Sacrament_ as others plead it to be; it is strange that that
_History_, which in many less Things gives a particular Account of the
_Christians_ Behaviour, should have been so silent in the Matter: Only
we find, That they used sometimes to meet together to break Bread, and
eat. [Sidenote: _The _Christians_ began by Degrees to depart from the
Primitive Purity._] Now as the _early Christians_ began by Degrees to
depart from that primitive Purity and Simplicity, so did they also
to accumulate superstitious Traditions, and vitiate the innocent
Practices of their Predecessors, by the Intermixing either of _Jewish_
or _Heathenish Rites_; and likewise in the Use of this, Abuses began
very early to creep in among Christians, so that it was needful for
the Apostle _Paul_ to reform them, and reprove them for it, as he doth
at large, 1 _Cor._ xi. from Ver. 17. to the End: [Sidenote: 1 Cor. 11.
17.] Which Place we shall particularly examine, because our Adversaries
lay the chief Stress of their Matter upon it; [Sidenote: _Concerning
the _Supper_ of the _Lord_ (so called) explained_.] and we shall see
whether it will infer any more than we have above granted. _First_,
Because they were apt to use that Practice in a superstitious Mind
beyond the true Use of it, so as to make of it some _mystical Supper
of the Lord_, he tells them, Ver. 20. That their _coming together
into one Place, is not to eat the Lord’s Supper_; he saith not, _This
is not the _right Manner_ to eat_; but, _This is_ NOT _to eat the
Lord’s Supper_; because the _Supper of the Lord is spiritual_, and
a _Mystery_. _Secondly_, He blames them, in that they came together
for the _Worse_, and not for the _Better_; the Reason he gives of
this is, Ver. 21. _For in Eating every one hath taken before his own
Supper; and one is hungry, and another is drunken._ [Sidenote: _Why
the Custom of _Supping in common_ was used among Christians._] Here it
is plain that the Apostle condemns them in that (because this Custom
of _Supping_ in General was used among Christians to increase their
Love, and as a Memorial of Christ’s Supping with the Disciples) they
had so vitiated it, as to eat it apart, and to come full, who had
Abundance; and hungry, who had little at Home; whereby the very Use and
End of this _Practice_ was lost and perverted: And therefore he blames
them, that they did not either eat this in Common at Home, or reserve
their Eating till they came all together to the publick Assembly. This
appears plainly by the following Ver. 22. _Have ye not Houses to eat
and drink in? Or despise ye the Church of God, and shame them that have
not?_ Where he blames them for their irregular Practice herein, in that
they despised to eat orderly, or reserve their Eating to the publick
Assembly; and so shaming such, as not having Houses, nor Fulness at
Home, came to partake of the common Table; who, being hungry, thereby
were shamed, when they observed others come thither full and drunken.
Those that without Prejudice will look to the Place, will see this must
have been the Case among the _Corinthians_: For supposing the Use of
this to have been then, as now used either by _Papists_, _Lutherans_,
or _Calvinists_, it is hard making Sense of the Apostle’s Words, or
indeed to conceive what was the Abuse the _Corinthians_ committed
in this Thing. Having thus observed what the Apostle said above,
[Sidenote: _The Rise of that Custom._] because this Custom of _Eating
and Drinking together some Time_ had its Rise from Christ’s Act with
the Apostles the Night he was betrayed; therefore the Apostle proceeds,
Ver. 23. to give them an Account of that: _For I have received of
the Lord that which also I delivered unto you, that the Lord Jesus,
the same Night in which he was betrayed, took Bread_, &c. Those that
understand the Difference betwixt a _Narration_ of a Thing, and a
_Command_, cannot but see, if they will, That there is no Command in
this Place, but only an Account of _Matter of Fact_; he saith not, _I
received of the Lord, that as he took Bread, so I should command it to
you to do so likewise_; there is nothing like this in the Place: Yea,
on the contrary, Ver. 25. where he repeats Christ’s imperative Words
to his Apostles, he placeth them so as they import no Command; _This
do ye, as oft as ye drink it, in Remembrance of me_: And then he adds,
_For as often as ye eat this Bread, and drink this Cup, ye do shew the
Lord’s Death till he come_: [Sidenote: _That _[As often]_ imports no
Command of this Supper._] But these Words [_As often_] import no more
a _Command_, than to say, _As often as thou goest to _Rome_, see the
Capitol_, will infer a _Command_ to me to go thither.

[Sidenote: Object.] But whereas they urge the last Words, _Ye shew
forth the Lord’s Death till he come_; insinuating, That _this imports a
necessary Continuance of that _Ceremony_, until Christ come at the End
of the World to Judgment_;

[Sidenote: _Answ._] I _answer_, They take two of the chief Parts of
the Controversy here for granted, without Proof. _First_, That [_as
often_] imports a _Command_; the contrary whereof is shewn; neither
will they ever be able to prove it. [Sidenote: _Christ’s outward and
inward Coming._] _Secondly_, That this _Coming_ is to be understood
of _Christ’s last outward Coming_, and not of his _inward_ and
_spiritual_, that remains to be proved: Whereas the Apostle might well
understand it of his _inward Coming_ and _Appearance_, which perhaps
some of those carnal _Corinthians_, that used to come drunken together,
had not yet known; and others, being weak among them, and inclinable
to dote upon Externals, this might have been indulged to them for a
Season, and even used by them who knew Christ’s Appearance in Spirit
(as other Things were, of which we shall speak hereafter) especially by
the Apostle, who became _weak_ to the _Weak_, and _all_ to _All_, that
he might _save some_. [Sidenote: _To remember Christ’s Death till he
come to arise in the Heart_.] Now those weak and carnal _Corinthians_
might be permitted the Use of this, to shew forth, or remember Christ’s
Death, till he came to arise in them; for though such need those
outward Things to put them in Mind of _Christ’s Death_, yet those who
are _dead with Christ_, and not only _dead with Christ_, but _buried_,
and also _arisen_ with him, need not such _Signs_ to remember him: And
to such therefore the Apostle saith, _Col._ iii. 1. _If ye then be
risen with Christ, seek those Things which are above, where Christ
sitteth on the right Hand of God_: But _Bread_ and _Wine_ are not those
Things that are above, but are Things of the Earth. But that this whole
Matter was a mere Act of Indulgence and Condescension of the Apostle
_Paul_ to the weak and carnal _Corinthians_, appears yet more by the
_Syriack_[133] Copy, which Ver. 17. in his entering upon this Matter,
hath it thus; _In that concerning which I am about to command you (_or_
instruct you) I commend you not, because ye have not gone forward,
but are descended unto that which is less, _or_ of less Consequence_:
Clearly importing, That the Apostle was grieved that such was their
Condition, that he was forced to give them Instructions concerning
those outward Things; and doting upon which, they shewed they were not
gone forward in the _Life of Christianity_, but rather sticking in
_beggarly Elements_. And therefore Ver. 20. the same _Version_ hath
it thus, _When then ye meet together, ye do not do it, as it is just
ye should do in the Day of the Lord, ye eat and drink it_: Therefore
shewing to them, That to meet together to eat and drink _outward Bread
and Wine_, was not the Labour and Work of that _Day of the Lord_. But
since our Adversaries are so zealous for this _Ceremony_, because used
by the Church of _Corinth_ (though with how little Ground is already
shewn) how come they to pass over far more positive Commands of the
Apostles, as Matters of no Moment? As _First_, _Acts_ xv. 29. where the
Apostles peremptorily command the _Gentiles_, [Sidenote: _To abstain
from Things strangled._] as that which was the Mind of the Holy Ghost,
_To abstain from Things strangled, and from Blood_: And _James_ v. 14.
[Sidenote: _The Anointing with Oil._] where it is expresly commanded,
_That the Sick be anointed with Oil in the Name of the Lord_.

[133] And likewise the other _Oriental Versions_, as the _Arabick_ and
_Æthiopick_, have it the same Way.

[Sidenote: Object.] If they say, _Those were only temporary Things, but
not to continue_;

[Sidenote: _Answ._] What have they more to shew for this; there being
no express Repeal of them?

[Sidenote: Object.] If they say, _The Repeal is implied, because the
Apostle saith, We ought not to be judged in Meats and Drinks_;

[Sidenote: _Answ._] I admit the _Answer_: But how can it be prevented
from militating the same Way against the other Practice? Surely not at
all: Nor can there be any Thing urged for the one more than for the
other, but Custom and Tradition.

[Sidenote: Object.] As for that of _James_, they say, _There followed a
Miracle upon it_, to wit, _The Recovery of the Sick_; _but this being
ceased, so should the Ceremony_.

[Sidenote: _Answ._] Though this might many Ways be answered, to
wit, That _Prayer_ then might as well be _forborn_, to which also
the _Saving of the Sick_ is there ascribed; yet I shall accept of
it, because I judge indeed that _Ceremony_ is ceased; [Sidenote: _A
Ceremony ought to cease, its Virtue failing_.] only methinks, since our
Adversaries, and that rightly, think a _Ceremony_ ought to cease where
the Virtue fails, they ought by the same Rule to forbear the _laying on
of Hands_, [Sidenote: _Thus laying on of Hands._] in Imitation of the
Apostles, since the Gift of the _Holy Ghost_ doth not follow upon it.

§. IX. But since we find that several Testimonies of Scripture do
sufficiently shew, That such _external Rites are no necessary Part of
the New Covenant Dispensation, therefore not needful now to continue_,
however they were for a Season practised of old, I shall instance some
few of them, whereby from the Nature of the Thing, as well as those
Testimonies, it may appear, That the Ceremony of _Bread and Wine_ is
ceased, as well as those other Things confessed by our Adversaries
to be so. [Sidenote: _The Ceremony of _Bread_ and _Wine_ is ceased._]
The first is _Rom._ xiv. 17. _For the Kingdom of God is not Meat and
Drink, but Righteousness and Peace, and Joy in the Holy Ghost_: Here
the Apostle evidently shews, That the _Kingdom of God_, or _Gospel
of Christ_, stands not in _Meats and Drinks_, and such like Things,
but in _Righteousness_, &c. as by the Context doth appear, where he
is speaking of the _Guilt_ and _Hazard_ of judging one another about
_Meats and Drinks_. So then, if the _Kingdom of God_ stand not in them,
nor the _Gospel_, nor _Work of Christ_, then the eating of outward
_Bread and Wine_ can be no necessary Part of the _Gospel-worship_, nor
any _perpetual Ordinance_ of it. Another of the same Apostle is yet
more plain, _Col._ ii. 16. the Apostle throughout this whole _second
Chapter_ doth clearly plead for us, and against the _Formality_ and
_Superstition_ of our Opposers: For in the Beginning he holds forth
the great _Privileges_ which Christians have by Christ, who are indeed
come to the _Life of Christianity_; and therefore he desires them, Ver.
6. _As they have received Christ, so to walk in him; and to beware,
lest they be spoiled through Philosophy and vain Deceit, after the
Rudiments or Elements of the World; because that in Christ, whom they
have received, is all Fulness: And that they are circumcised with the
Circumcision made without Hands (_which he calls the_ Circumcision of
Christ) and being buried with him by Baptism, are also arisen with him
through the Faith of the Operation of God._ Here also they did partake
of the _true Baptism of Christ_; and being such as are _arisen_ with
him, let us see whether he thinks it needful they should make use of
such _Meat and Drink_ as _Bread and Wine_, _to put them in Remembrance
of Christ’s Death_; or whether they ought to be judged, that they did
it not; Ver. 16. _Let no Man therefore judge you in Meat and Drink_: Is
not _Bread_ and _Wine_ _Meat_ and _Drink_? But why? _Which are a Shadow
of Things to come: But the Body is of Christ._ [Sidenote: _’Tis but a
_Sign_ and _Shadow_ they confess._] Then since our Adversaries confess,
That their _Bread_ and _Wine_ is a _Sign_ or _Shadow_; therefore,
according to the Apostle’s Doctrine, we ought not to be _judged_ in
the Non-observation of it. But is it not fit for those that are _dead
with Christ_ to be subject to such Ordinances? [Sidenote: _And which
do perish with the Using._] See what he saith, Ver. 20. _Wherefore
if ye be dead with _Christ_ from the Rudiments of the World, why, as
though living in the World, are ye subject to Ordinances? (Touch not,
taste not, handle not: Which all are to perish with the Using) after
the Commandments and Doctrines of Men._ What can be more plain? If this
serve not to take away the absolute Necessity of the Use of _Bread_
and _Wine_, what can it serve to take away? Sure I am, the Reason here
given is applicable to them, _which all do perish with the Using_;
since _Bread_ and _Wine_ perish with the Using, as much as other
Things. But further, If the Use of _Water_, and _Bread_ and _Wine_,
were that wherein the very _Seals_ of the _New Covenant_ stood, and
did pertain to the chief _Sacraments_ of the _Gospel_ and _Evangelical
Ordinances_ (so called) then would not the _Gospel_ differ from the
_Law_, or be preferable to it. [Sidenote: _The Law was Meats and
Drinks; not so the Gospel._] Whereas the Apostle shews the Difference,
_Heb._ ix. 10. in that such Kind of Observations of the _Jews_ were as
a Sign of the _Gospel_, for that they _stood only in Meats and Drinks,
and divers Washings_. But if the _Gospel-worship_ and _Service_ stand
in the same, where is the Difference?

[Sidenote: Object.] If it be said, _These under the _Gospel_ have a
spiritual Signification_;

[Sidenote: _Answ._] So had those under the _Law_; God was the Author of
those, as well as Christ is pretended to be the Author of these. But
doth not this contending for the Use of _Water_, _Bread_ and _Wine_,
as necessary Parts of the _Gospel-worship_, destroy the Nature of it,
as if the _Gospel_ were a Dispensation of _Shadows_, and not of the
_Substance_? [Sidenote: _The Law has_ Shadows, _the Gospel brings
the Substance_.] Whereas the Apostle, in that of the _Colossians_
above-mentioned, argues against the Use of these Things, as needful to
those that are _dead_ and _arisen_ with Christ, because they are but
_Shadows_. And since, through the whole _Epistle_ to the _Hebrews_, he
argues with the _Jews_, to _wean_ them from their _old Worship_, for
this Reason, because it was _typical_ and _figurative_; is it agreeable
to right Reason to bring them to another of the same Nature? What
Ground from _Scripture_ or _Reason_ can our Adversaries bring us, to
evince that one _Shadow_ or _Figure_ should point to another _Shadow_
or _Figure_, and not to the _Substance_? And yet they make the Figure
of _Circumcision_ to point to _Water-baptism_, and the _Paschal Lamb_
to _Bread and Wine_. But was it ever known that one Figure was the
_Anti-type_ of the other, especially seeing _Protestants_ make not
these their _Anti-types_ to have any more Virtue and Efficacy than
the _Type_ had? [Sidenote: _Their _Sacraments_ confer not Grace._]
For since, as they say, and that truly, _That their Sacraments confer
not Grace, but that it is conferred according to the Faith of the
Receiver_, it will not be denied but the Faithful among the _Jews_
received also Grace in the Use of their _Figurative Worship_. And
though _Papists_ boast that their Sacraments confer Grace _ex opere
operato_, yet Experience abundantly proveth the contrary.

§. X. [Sidenote: _Opposers claim a Power to give their Sacraments; from
whence do they derive it?_] But supposing the Use of _Water-baptism_
and _Bread and Wine_ to have been in the Primitive Church, as was
also that of _abstaining from Things strangled_, _and from Blood_,
_the Use of Legal Purification_, Acts xxi. 23, 24, 25. and _anointing
of the Sick with Oil_, for the Reasons and Grounds before mentioned;
yet it remains for our Adversaries to shew us how they come by Power
or Authority to administer them. It cannot be from the Letter of the
Scripture, else they ought also to do those other Things, which the
Letter declares also they did, and which in the Letter have as much
Foundation. Then their Power must be _derived from the Apostles_,
either _mediately_ or _immediately_; but we have shewn before, in the
_tenth Proposition_, that they have no _mediate Power_, because of the
Interruption made by the _Apostasy_; and for an _immediate Power_ or
_Command_ by the Spirit of God to administer these Things, none of our
Adversaries pretend to it. We know that in this, as in other Things,
they make a Noise of the _constant Consent of the Church, and of
Christians in all Ages_; [Sidenote: _Tradition no sufficient Ground for
_Faith.] but as _Tradition_ is not a sufficient Ground for _Faith_,
so in this Matter especially it ought to have but small Weight; for
that in this Point of _Ceremonies_ and _superstitious Observations_ the
Apostasy began very early, as may appear in the _Epistle_ of _Paul_
to the _Galatians_ and _Colossians_; and we have no Ground to imitate
them in those Things, whose Entrance the Apostle so much _withstood_,
so heavily _regretted_, and so sharply _reproved_. But if we look to
_Antiquity_, we find that in such Kind of Observances and Traditions
they were very uncertain and changeable; so that neither _Protestants_
nor _Papists_ do observe this Ceremony as they did, both in that they
gave it to _young Boys_, and to _little Children_: [Sidenote: _The
_Supper_ they gave to young Boys and Children._] And for aught can
be learned, the Use of this and _Infant-baptism_ are of a like Age,
though the one be laid aside both by _Papists_ and _Protestants_, and
the other, to wit, _Baptism of Infants_, be stuck to. And we have so
much the less Reason to lay Weight upon _Antiquity_, for that if we
consider their Profession of Religion, especially as to Worship, and
the ceremonial Part of it, we shall not find any Church now, whether
_Popish_ or _Protestant_, who differ not widely from them in many
Things, [Sidenote: Dallæus.] as _Dallæus_, in his Treatise concerning
the _Use of the Fathers_, well observeth and demonstrateth. And why
they should obtrude this upon us because of the _Ancients Practice_,
which they themselves follow not, or why we may not reject this,
as well as they do other Things no less zealously practised by the
_Ancients_, no sufficient Reason can be assigned.

Nevertheless I doubt not but many, whose Understandings have been
clouded with these _Ceremonies_, have notwithstanding, by the Mercy
of God, had some secret Sense of the _Mystery_, which they could
not clearly understand, because it was sealed from them by their
sticking to such outward Things; and that through that secret Sense
diving in their Comprehensions they ran themselves into these carnal
Apprehensions, as imagining the _Substance_ of the _Bread_ was changed,
or that if the _Substance_ was not changed, yet the _Body_ was there,
_&c._ [Sidenote: _Calvin’s ingenuous Confession commended._] And
indeed I am inclinable very favourably to judge of _Calvin_ in this
Particular, in that he deals so ingenuously to confess he _neither
comprehends it, nor can express it in Words_; _but yet by a feeling
Experience can say, The Lord is spiritually present_. Now as I doubt
not but _Calvin_ sometimes had a Sense of his _Presence_ without
the Use of this Ceremony, so as the Understanding given him of God
made him justly reject the false Notions of _Transubstantiation_ and
_Consubstantiation_, though he knew not what to establish instead of
them, if he had fully waited in the [134]_Light that makes all Things
manifest_, and had not laboured in his own Comprehension to settle upon
that external Ceremony, by affixing the _spiritual Presence_ as chiefly
or principally, though not only, as he well knew by Experience, there,
or especially to relate to it, he might have further reached unto the
Knowledge of this _Mystery_ than many that went before him.

[134] Ephes. 5. 13.

§. XI. [Sidenote: _In Tenderness of Conscience, God winketh at our
_Ignorance.] _Lastly_, If any now at this Day, from a true Tenderness
of Spirit, and with real Conscience towards God, did practise this
_Ceremony_ in the same Way, Method, and Manner as did the _Primitive
Christians_ recorded in Scripture, I should not doubt to affirm but
they might be indulged in it, and the Lord might regard them, and for
a Season appear to them in the Use of these Things, as many of us have
known him to do to us in the Time of our Ignorance; provided always
they did not seek to obtrude them upon others, nor judge such as found
themselves _delivered_ from them, or that they do not pertinaciously
adhere to them. [Sidenote: _The Day is dawned wherein God is risen,
and worshipped in Spirit_.] For we certainly know that the _Day_ is
_dawned_, in which God hath _arisen_, and hath dismissed all those
_Ceremonies_ and _Rites_, and is only to be _worshipped in Spirit_,
and that he appears to them who wait upon him; and that to seek God
in these Things is, with _Mary_ at the Sepulchre, to _seek the Living
among the Dead_: For we know that he is _risen_, and _revealed in
Spirit_, leading his Children out of these _Rudiments_, that they may
walk with him in his _Light_: To whom be Glory for ever. _Amen._


Concerning the POWER of the CIVIL MAGISTRATE in Matters purely
    RELIGIOUS, and pertaining to the CONSCIENCE.

[135]_Since God hath assumed to himself the Power and Dominion of
    the _Conscience_, who alone can rightly instruct and govern it,
    therefore it is not lawful for any whosoever, by Virtue of any
    Authority or Principality they bear in the Government of this
    World, to force the _Consciences_ of others; and therefore all
    Killing, Banishing, Fining, Imprisoning, and other such Things
    which are inflicted upon Men for the alone Exercise of their
    _Conscience_, or Difference in _Worship_ or _Opinion_, proceedeth
    from the Spirit of _Cain_ the Murderer, and is contrary to the
    Truth; providing always, that no Man, under the Pretence of
    _Conscience_, prejudice his _Neighbour_ in his Life or Estate, or
    do any Thing destructive to, or inconsistent with, _Human Society_;
    in which Case the Law is for the Transgressor, and _Justice_ is to
    be administered upon all, without Respect of Persons._

[135] Luke 9. 55, 56. Matt. 7. 12, 13. 29. Tit. 3. 10.

§. I. Liberty of _Conscience_ from the Power of the Civil Magistrate
hath been of late Years so largely and learnedly handled, that I shall
need to be but brief in it; yet it is to be lamented that few have
walked answerably to this Principle, each pleading it for themselves,
but scarce allowing it to others, as hereafter I shall have Occasion
more at length to observe.

It will be fit in the first Place, for clearing of Mistakes, to say
something of the _State_ of the _Controversy_, th