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Full text of "Christian concord; or, The agreement of the associated pastors and churches of Worcestershire. With Rich. Baxter's Explication and defence of it, and his exhortation to unity"




of the AfTociated 

O F 


ch. ^Baxters Explication and Defence of 
it, and his Exhortation to Unity, 

RO M. 12. 4,5. 

For M Vie have many Members in one Body, and all Members haw not the 
fame Office : fo Vce being Many are one Body in Chrift, and every one 
Members one of another, 

J u D B Ver. i p; 

Thefe be thej Who fe far ate tkemfe foe s,fenf nail, having not the Sfirit+ 


Printed by A.^M. for Thorns Vnderhill&t the Anchor and Bible in Paul* 
Church-yard near the little North-door, and Francis Tjton at the. 
three Daggers in Eleet-ftreet near Dnnftons Church 3 6 5 3. 





THE ^ 


Agreed on by the 

Affociated Minifters 

of the County of 

C R > C E S T E 

and fome adjacent Parts. 

.r ., 

Mimflers of the Goftelwhofe Nantes are underwritten, after 
$ur fceking if Gods dmttitn. And our mojt fcnou* confult** 
ttws ahont the drfeharge of Mr Duty , for the fofprxtwg 
and right GMdiflgtfiheCo&grtgations cortomttcdtoeur thargi) 
and for the right MM Aging of Gods Wwflip therein -, Do Agrtt 

and Rtfolve asfolbweth : 

J * 

N general. We do Agree and Refolve^ not to 
addift or engage our felves to any Party^nor 
to fet upthe Dia-aces of any as luch, but at 
prefent only toPradife unaniii-ioufly thofe 
$$$&&$ tnownTruths which the fober and godly of 
each Party ,:r.e agreed in, as near as poflil Iy 
wccan^thatfo we may neither giTe occafiontoany iuch fobec 
and godly per fens to divide irom us ^ nor yet proceed uri- 
groum edly 3 doubtmgly,and uncomfortably in our Woik,nor 
attempt any thing but what we know to be of God, and may 

A 3 cheat- 

chearfully bear all labour, and fuffcrings that we may tnet 
with in carry ing icon. 

Il.-Weagtee^nd^^ help, That fpfar as 

Ciod doth mate known our duty to us, we vvill faithfully en- 
dlavdur cb diichargelt, and will not dc lift through any fears 
ofloflesinourEftates.orthefr^wh^and difplealureof men, 
or any the like Carna^inducemcntsvvhatlQever. 
^1 iijj^P^i^lajByT^elire^H convinced that it is thcdti- 
t^fwA MttfftenoendeaTOur fb know (it pofTiblejeach 
perfon of his charge, tftat fo he may know where hi;> fpecial 
duty Iieth 3 an<^ how to^perfoniMt. 

IV.; Vyep^lfp^onvmcadyThatit is the duty ot :"Mini- 
fterand^d>p}t; -sfttdirdirg to their fevera! rtpportunitics, to 
admonifti and reprove thole that live in any known firi 5 
through wilfulneile or negligence (laying afide the ordinary 
infirmities that the moft godly are iubjcftto ) and this muft 
be with tender lpve,anid. yet with great ierioufteffQ, and with 
difcretion 5 -dndfrotwith malice , Ditternefle , or diidain , yec 
varioufly according to the quality of the perlon and offence. 
And if the offender hear noc, that is, obey not the admonici- 
on.,by Repeating and Reforming, heinuft be admoniftied b.e- 
fofe \yicneiTe ^ This therefore, we Refolve by Gods -afliftancc 
faithfully to pr;atife according to our opportunitie , and to 
acquaint our people with their duty herein , efpecially in 
great Congregations, where through the greatneflfe and multi 
tude of other works, lefle of this can be expefted from Mini- 

^V-rr -t r -i yu-fi rr 

V. If anyaftcr this admonition (hall yetrefufe to Repent 
$ndReform, thofe that can prove it, muft tell the Church- 
Officers, who muft hear the cafe, and admonifli them with 
Autherity. The like muft be done by thofo that have been 
ftadmoniflicd by others formerly , and not Repented and 
Reformed and thofe whofe fin is notorious, and hainoufly 
fcandalous. But for private perfons to accufe others in the 
ublkk Congregation before the Officers have heard the- 

fej m^v breed dangerous ilanders and quarrels > We Re- 


folve therefore to appoint fome Certain times for the hearing 
of fuch cafes. ^ 

VI. In Corporations 5 or other places that have Magi- 
ftrates , We judge it convenient 5 if we can fo far prevail with 
them , that they would grant us their prefence at thefe meet- 
ingSjbothtobewknefles of our right proceedings 5 and to 
countenance them fo far as by Law they may and efpecially 
becaufc it is neceffary that they fcave the full cognifance of our 
proceedings, before we can expc<5t they fhould affift us a* 
gainftany that will violently intrude into our commuoion or 
difturb usrand alfb that they may at the fame time firft cenfurc 
offenders according to Law 3 and fo we may know their proof 
of the fad - 7 yet do we judge their prefence a matter rather of 
convenisncie then of necemty. 

VI I. If any after this refute to Repent and Reform , or 
if any have finned hainoufly with publick fcandal of the 
Church, it is the duty of Minifters to rebuke fuch before 
all the Church , and to call them publickly to repentance : 
This therefore wearerefolved in both thefe cafes to pra- 

VIII. Yet,where any mans fia is fiich, as to expofe him 
by the Law of the Land to death, or imprifonment, or great 
mul&Sj or other penalties 5 We refolve notto anticipate pub- 
lick Juftice, nor to call out fuch to accufe themfelves by 
their Church confeflions 5 butfhall wait to fee what Juftice 
will do with them : but after mul&s and corporal penalties 
impo r ed by Juftice upon proof of guilt., we may and muft 
require open repentance, if the perfon do furvive, 

IX. We Refolve (that we wrong net others or our 
fclves) notto mention any mans fia publickly (by this perfo- 
nal application J before we have full proof beyond all excep- 
tion,both of the fa&andthe faultinefs^and nottotraducemen 
in doubtful or controverted cafes , and moft commonly 
we tnuft have the parties own confeffion of the matter of 

X, If 

X. If after this publick admonition the finner (hall obfti- 
natcly refufc to manifeft Repentance, or to Reform 5 it is the 
dutyoftheMinifterstomakeaperfonal application to him of 
thofe threatnings which Chrift hath denounced inScripture a- 
gainft f uch as he is 5 and cfpecially to declare in the Name of 
Chrift,chat heis one whofe communion the Church is bound 
to avoid ; and to require him to forbear ufurping that com 
munion, and to charge the Church in Chrifts Name to avoid 
all familiarity with him, not only in Gods Worfliip , but in 
common converfation, further then natural and civil relations 
binde us. 

X I. When the Church or Officers are orderly acquainted 
that any man is obftinate in fin, after private and leffe publick 
admonition, or that his finis notorious, and of publick fcan- 
dal , it is unmeet to admit him to publick communion at the 
Lords Supper while he is under juft tryallj for while the 
Church is necdfarily in doubt whether he be fuch a fcanda* 
lous or obflinate finner or not , and fo whether they may 
lawfully communicate with him or not (being forbidden 
communion with fuch ) they muft needs forbear his com 
munion for that time ( till his clearing or Repentance refolve 
their doubt ) or elfe they muft adt doubtingly and not in 
Faith: Yetthisisonlyafufpenfionof aflual communion at 
prefent (no duty being a duty at all times to be performed ) 
and not a proper denial of his right till he be caft out. The 
trial of his juftly queftioned right, will not fitly confift 
with his adual, full, and prefent exercife and ufe of fuch pri- 

XII. We are all agreed likewife, That where men are 
thusnotoriouflyfcandalous,or obftinate in known fin, we 
may not content our felves with a meer debarring fuch from 
the Lords Supper ( which mulitudes do willingly forbear of 
themfelves,who yet are taken for as goodChrift ians as others, 
and not avoided in regard of any other communion) but we 
muft proceed to the forementioned pubJSck reproof, and caft- 


out of our communion , elfe their remaining mem 
bers of our Church will harden themfelves, offend the godly^ 
occafion the weak to feparate , and will be a fcandal to our 
Profeffion, and an offence of God: We refolve therefore to 
tiifchargethe forefaid duties in faithfulnefle, as God fhall en 
able us. 

XI II .It muft not be a flight 5 unwilling 5 meer verbal Repent* 
ance that muft fatisfie theChurch,ekher for preventing or ta 
king offaCenfure of cafting out, but only fuch as feemeth 
free and feriouSjanfwerable in fome meafure to the quality of 
the fauk.Such therefore we Rcfoive to requireand ex pe$ thas 
we delude nor mens fouls, and provoke not God by making a 
formality orjeftof his Ordinances. 

XIV- If after once or twice fcandalous or obftinatc fin 
ning , a man do once and again profeffe a ferious Repentance 5 
w^liall admit him to Communion : But if after oft profcffing 
of Repentance he return again to wilful or fcandalous finning, 
we fhall delay hisre-admiflion till his a&ual Reformation do 
manifeft the truth of his Repentance , elfe Gods Ordinances 
will be fruftrated by illufion : Yet cannot we punctually re* 
iblve juft how oft fuch mens profeffions alone may betaken as 
iatisfa&ory 5 nor juft how long we muft delay his re-admifli- 
on, if he forbear finning, feeing thcfe are to be varied accord 
ing to the qualitie of the fin, and the feeming ferioufncfle of 
Repentance, and therefore muft be prudentially determined, 
when the individual Cafe with its circumftances is confide- 

X V. Though the people have not Minifterial or govern 
ing power,yet they are to have a judgement of difcret ion,and 
thereby to try and difcern, whether they that docaft out, or 
Abfolve by Minifterial Authoritative Declaration, do pro 
ceed according to God sword or not, and are not to obey any 
fentenre or injunction that is contrary to that word 5 yet 
muft they not on that pretence difobey or rcfufe to execute 
fuch injun&ions and Cenfures without manifefting their 
proofs of its Error. 


XVI. If people will not avoid communion and familiari 
ty with fuch as are publickly caft out,they are to be dealt with 
by admonition, as in cafe of other fins. But if it (hould be a 
greater part of thcChurch that fhallobftinately after admoni 
tion ownand maintain a notorious fcandalous firmer in his 
fin* 7 or fo far profeffe communion with him, that they make 
his fn their own, and continue ob fiinate therein, th-e reft 
oi the Church are not only bound neverthelefic to (hun com- 
munion with the offender, but with them that fo adhere to 
him, provided that it be not about kfler fins , or in a difputa- 
ble doubtfull cafe ,, wherein they want full evidence againft 
the offender: Yet do we agree for the avoiding of (everal 
dangerous confequents, before we attempt this work, to 
acquaint our Brethren of that Aflbdation , and hear their 

XVII. It having been the cuftom of the Church in the 
Apoftles daies , to have ordinarily many Officers in a 
Church, and the private part of the Minifterial duty being fo 
exceeding great, and of indifpcnfableneceffity where it can be 
performed, and a fo becaufe it islefiefatisfa&ory and conve 
nient for one Minifter alone to try cafes, where more may be 
had-, We therefore judge it need full to ufe all lawfull means 
to procure mareMiniftersor Elders then one in each Church, 
even proportionable so the number of Souls, and greatneffe 
of the work , and if for want of men or maintenance, 
there cannot Learned men ; be obtained 3 We judgeit fit totake 
the affiftance of fober Orthodox judicious perfons of compe 
tent ability for private inftru&ion and over-fight, and ordain 
ed to ,tbiswork>though defective in learning, and leffe able 
publickly to Teach ^ and who may leave publick {peaking 
to him that is more ; sble, and do the moreof the leffe pub- 
lick work ?-r<nd that fuch if other maintenance be wanting, 
may lawfully and fitly labour with their hands: And as long 
as we agree that thefe Elders are ordained Church-Officers 9 
and what fhill be their work, there needsTo be no breach a- 
mong us, though we determined not of their pdwtr fe Sacra- 

jand whetherthcirOfficebethefame withthe Teach 
ing Elders : Whilft we agree in Pradke,w<s may* leave mens 
feveral principals in fuch a .difficult controverted point to their 
own judgements: Alfo we conceive it meet that where 
there are fit men, feme be ordained to the Office of Dea 

XVIII. Becaufe all this foreitientioned Difcipline can 
not be exercifed without the peoples confent ( the Minifterial 
power being not compulfive,as by violence, bit Nunchtive;, 
Swafory,and directive) and we have at prefent no full di 
covery of their confent: AndbecaufeMiniftersihould have 
a particular knowledge of their Charge , which how is un 
certain, and for divers other Reafons propounded and deba 
ted amongus , we judgeit very fit , if not of nfcceffity , to de- 
fire a moreexprefle fignification of our peoples confent to our 
Miniftry, and Minifterialadions 5 and in particular to fubmit 
to this Difcipline, as the members of that particular Church: 
And bec?.ufe we have reafbn to fcifpedl that many among us 
underftand not, or believe not the very fundamentals Effenti- 
altothe Chriftian Faith % We judge it fit withall to require 
an underftanding profeflion of Affent and Confent to fuch 
fundamentals , except any of us fliould judge that we can 
better excrcife the foremcntioncd Difcipline without calling 
their people to fuch a profeffion of confent^ in which cafe we 
will declare our Reafcns to our Brethren of the Miniftry in 
our meetings 5 and hear their udvice when the cafe is open 
ed. - 

XIX. In requiring this expreffe confent, We agree to pro 
ceed according to thefe following Rules. 

Reg. i . We will firft inftrud our people in divers Sermons 
about the Nature of a Church, its conftituti.m and gwern- 
ment, the duty and Authority of Paftors, and the duties of 
people to God, their Miniflers 5 and to each other as members 
of fuch a Church, and the meaning of each branch of that 
Profeflion which we call them to, that fo they may not do it 
rafhly> ignprantly 5 or formally. 

B i R.2, 

R. 2. We (hall as exa&ly as God (hall enable us, draw up, 
and agree upon aiorm of words containing the faid Profefli- 
on, wit ha brief Preface concerning thereafons, nature, and 
ends of it 5 and we will all. ufe the lame form of words to a 
word, except any Brother Shall thinkhimfeU bound to diiFer 
tn any fmaller point, where a difference istol!erable 5 in which 
cafe we will give in our reafons at the meeting of our Brethren 
of the Miniftiy^and hear their advife. 

R.j, We fliall take thefe Profeflions only in publick, and 
not fec-retly. 

R.4, We fliall deliver to our people a Copy of this form 
of Profcffion that they may confider of it before they are cal 
led to it* 

R. 5. We (hall firft receive the Profeffion of all them that 
are fatisfied and moft willing,and wait till the refl are fatisfied 
and -will/reejy confent, and not fpur them on to do it igno- 
rantly,raflbly or unwillingly. 

R. 6. If any deny or delay to expreffe their conftnt , We 
ihall endeavour carefully to difcernon what grounds he doth 
it, and whether it be a flat denial of the matter, or only foms 
fcriipleatthemanner, and accordingly (ball diftinguifli be 
tween, i . Profeffors of Confenr, as being members certain. 
a. Or deniers of confent as to the matter , as being no me ru 
lers of that Church: 3. And delayers or deniers to confenc 
to the manner , as being uncertain, orldTecertain , whe 
ther they are members or no 5 till they further difco- 

R.7. Wefhall diftinguifli bet ween Infant- members , and 
Adult, and for the former we (hall take thir Parents profef* 
fion 3 aad for the latter we fliall expeft their own: And though 
it cannot be determined juft to a day or year when any is paft 
his Infant-Chujrch-Eftate, yetnone muftbe enrolled or ac 
counted among Aduk. and pevfed-members, til they perfo- 
nally and publickly (hall make their profeffion 5 whether ic 
be only of their Faith and Obedience to Chrift, that they 
may beefteemed Adult, members of the Uniyerfell Church, 


or alfo their confent to be members of a 

R.8. If any at full age do offer their Confent to be iBcm^ 
bcr sofa particular Church, and expe& eo enjoy its privi- 
ledges, who yet underftand not , or believe not the funda 
mental Effential points of the Chriftian Religion, if they be 
willingto Iearn 5 we (hall prefentlyinftrudt them as Ctiecitme* 
ni , and admit them when they are fit: But if they refufeto 
learn , we muft take them for fuch as refufeto be Chriftians$ 
and therfore where we have juft reafonto fufpeft the igno 
rance or unbelief of any that offer their profeffion of the torrn 
of words. We judge icour duty more particularly to examine 
them 3 yet refolve that we will not refufe any for want of fis 
exprcflions 5 who any waydifcover that they underftand the 

R 9* Though we fhJl receive -Profeffions only in public k* 
for fatisfadion of the Church, and other reafbns 3 yet thofe 
whofe knowledge only isfufpe6ted 5 we may examine in pri 
vate, becaufe f ome of underftandingare not able in publick 
to-expreffetheirmindes: and afterwards in publick we (hall 
receive their profefii-on if they are found fie. 

R.io. 1 1 any fhall publicity offer his profeffion of C6n^ 
fent 5 who is a confefled or a convided fcandalous or obfti- 
nate finner ; We fhall immediately require him to profeffe 
openly his Repentance, for his former {candalous fins before 
we receive his profeflion of duty for the future, feeing in 
order that muftgofirft-, and if he refufe, he muft fufpend 
our numbring him with the founder members 3 and pro 
ceed to publick admonition and Cenfure if he perfevere 

R, 1 1 . If there be not enough in one Parifli that will con- 
fent (after our fuflficient waiting; we fhall joyn them to che- 
next Parifh by confent 5 yet condnuing (till our meetings for 
preaching to the reft that confent noty and not medling with 
alterations of the Mmifters maintenariccs yet in this weighty 

Bj cafe 

cafe, we dcfire advice may firft be had from the Minifters of 
that Affociation- 

X X. Becaufc all Churches are parts of the Church Uni- 
verfal, and all true Chriftians arc members of that body,and 
of Chrift , and have one Head, Lord , Faith , Baptifm $ one 
Rule of Faith and life, one Spirit, and one bond, and com 
mon cognitancc of entire love to Chrift, and one another 5 
and have one Hope 3 one End, and muft be onein blcffed union 
and communion with Chrift everlaftingly : We judge it 
therefore of great and indifpcnfable neceflity , that we ufe all 
good means for themaintainingof this Union and Commu 
nion 5 and to do as much of our work as we can in concord 
with one another, and as little as may be dividedly , and by 
our felves : And therefore we refolve according to our duty 
to keep conftant communion and correfpondence , and to 
that end to hold certain meetings of the Miniftry in Affociati- 
on , and that according to theie follow ings Rules. 

Reg. i. We judge it convenient to meet in 5,feveral Affo- 
ciationsat 5. feveral places in this County, vK(. at Werccjter^ 
EvcfliAmyUftony KtddermmHer^^ Bromfgrevt) and thisonce 
a month on a day tobe agreed on (or oftner if need require.) 

R.s. We (hall not by dividing the County, prelume to 
limit others to any one of thefe A(fociations,but let every Mi- 
nifter according to his own conveniency choofe to which of 
thefe Aflbciations he will joyn himfelf , and accordingly 
fubfcribe to a Copy of thefe Articles, which {hall be kept at 
the place of meeting for that Aflbciation and fo may 
any Minifter that (hall hereafter joyn with us, who at the pre- 
fcnt doth not. 

R.j. We (hall give notice to all Minifters of Piety ,and com 
petent ability, who now are not among us , and defire them 
to joyn with us, and offer them a free debate of any thing 
\vhichtheymayfcruple , and defire them to ad join them- 
felves to which Affociation they judge moft conveni 

R.4- We ftall atthcfc monthly meetings keep up a pub- 
lique Le&urefor the common benefit. x 

R.5. At thefe meetings we fhali maintain fome Difpu- 
rations or other Exercife, which fhallbe found moft ufe- 
full to our own edification , efpecially for the younger 
fort of Minifters; Or elfe meet on purpofe for this anorhcr 

R.. We fliall here endeavour on confutation to refolve 
all particular doubts that arife about Difcipline, or Wor(hip, 
or Dodhine, which (for the avoiding of all occafions of di- 
vifion) we have not thought fit to make the matter of this 
Agreement, or which thefe general Rules fuffice not to de 

R.y, We fhall here alfo produce and propound to confi- 
deration any new point of Do<5trine wherein we differ from 
the moft of the Reformed Churches, befo;e we adventure to 
teach it our hearers, 

R,8. We (hall here debate all differences in judgement (ft 
for debate) that may happen among our felves or any of 
our people. 

R.p. We (hall here receiveany complaint that any people 
haveagainft any member of our Atfbciation, for fcandaijalfe 
Do&rinc,or Male adminiftration -, and we all refolve to give 
an account of our Dofh ine and adions 3 when any offended 
brother fli, 11 foaccufe us , both for the fatisiaftion of the 
Church and him. 

R.ic. We (hall here make known the Names of all thofe 
whom we have put out of our communion 5 and we rafolve 
al^fustorcfufe communion with fuch, and not to receive 
them into one Church who are cart out of another, except 
they have given fatisfadion, or we firft here prove them un- 
juftly caft out. 

R .II. We {hall here make it known if any member of a- 
nother Parifh fliall offer to adjoin themfelvjs to any of our 
Congregation^ as members thereof 5 and we refolve nor 
to receive any fuch y except we give here fiiffident 

reafons for it } a* if they be neceffkaced through the fin of 
the Minifter ? or Panfli where cbeylive, to do it, or-che 

R. i %. We ftali here make it known if there be any mem 
bers of another Parifh (adjoined to no Church) who defire 
cither S&cramens from us, that we may know from the Mi- 
nifler of that place whether they are fit to be admitted or 

R. 15, Thole who being fole Minifters of particular 
Churches 9 do doubt whether they alone may judge any man 
to be unfit for Church-Communion, and fo declare him , or 
may publickly by name rebuke him , they may do well 
here to take the advice of the Affectation for their proceed 

R. 14* We defire that all young Minifters,or any that are 
not well furnifhed with difcretion and ability to manage thofe 
publick reproofs and cenfures , would do nothing in ic with 
out firft confulting thefe AiTemblies , yea in fo weighty a cafe 
as is excluding from Church-Communion, We judge it 
convenient that all Minifters advife with their Brethren of 
that Affociation for their fater proceeding, 

R.I5- We (hall he re confult about the good ofneighbour 
Churches, for helping them where they want teaching, for 
advifingthemagainftErrars,Scducers,or Scandals, and fur 
thering to our power the propagation of the Gpfpel. 

R. 16. We do refol veto frequent thefc meetings as con- 
ftantly as we can , and not negled them aRd fruftrate their 

R.I 7. We (hall once a quarter (and oftncr if emergent 
occafion require it ) fend Delegates from all thefe AiTociati- 
ations to Wwctjltr (not forbidding any other to be there) 
where weftall hold a more general meeting for tberefolving 
of greateft difficultis, and the more unanimous carrying 
OKI the work of the Gofpel. 

R. 18. We ftiall admit into thefe our Affociations the neigh 
bour Minifters alfb of other Counties^ where no fuch Affoci 

ationsare, orarefo remote that they cannot well join in 


R. 19. Before any of us fliallforfake this Agreement and 
thefe Refolutions, we (hall give our Reafons to the Affocia- 
tion,and hear what they can fay againft it 3 and not do it with 
out fufficient caufe. 

R.20. We refol vein none of our meetings to go beyond 
the bounds of our Calling, in medling with Secular or State 
affairs, nor do any thing injurious to the Common wealth; 
but maintain all juft Obedience to Authority- and fhall diredfc 
all our Confultations to the good of fouls, the Propagation of 
the Gofpel, the Unity , Peace, and Reformation of the 
Church 3 and the glory and pleafing of God in all. 

Cwfentimw nos injrafcripti. 



of forae Paflagcs in the foregoing 



With an Anfwer to fome Objcdkions 
that are like to be made againft then* 

Written by 

1 \1C H. <B A XT E^ 

To prevent the cauflefs Dtflcnt and Separation, 

of any fincere Chriftians from our CHURCH is, or 

fincere Miniftersfrom our 


Efpcoiailjr for the Satisfaction of th^Tn- 

Kabitants of 


Printed by A.<JM. for Thorn* VndeMll, at the Anchor and Bible in 

Pauls Church-yard near the little North-door, and frtncis Tjt*t 9 

at the three Daggers in Fiectftreci near Dxnftws Church. 1653. 

The Contents* 

Omc Generals for the Explication four Intend. 

The firft Proposition explained. 

The eighth Propofition explained. 

The tenth -Proportion explained. 

The twelfth Propofition explained. 
The fifteenth and feventeenth Propositions explained. 
The ReaCons of the eighteenth Proposition. 
Objections A#fwered againft Solemn Profeffing. 
The fcnfe qKhe twentieth Proportion; 




P ib. 
P. 10. 

The Proferfi on explained. 

Their Objedions Anfwercd who will wait to fee what the Magiftrate will fettle": 

and that think all vain without them. p. z g 

Our Churches are not in a ftate to be Refted in. 9.19. 

The Objections of the Clafficall Brethren Anfwcred. t p j r ] 

The Objections of the Congregationall Brethren Anfwered. p.$4! 

The Objections of the Epifcopall Brethren: And i. Oi particular Application 

andrejeetingof offenders from our Communion. p.4i. 

Obj. i. [That we are not true Minifters or Churches for wan: of Bifhops or of E- 

pifcopall Ordination, ] Anfwered. 9.4+. 

What fovt of Epifcopall Divines it is that make this Objection. ?-49 

A Warning to England, cfpecially the Gentry that todkpart with the late King, of 

a fnare that is laid to bring them to Popery. p >4 8 ( 

The Objectors proved no Proteftams. p 4^ 

Dr. Fields Teftimony at large, for the Miniftcrs Ordained without Billiops. p. 5 j , 
The Teftimony of K.Vov?name,V.fv>ett,$aravt4, B.^//J, B&tB&Ml K.Brtfgct t . 

K.Bilfon, Nowctt,Cjrotiits, Mr. ChifenbAtt, the Lord Vigby* K.J>Mvetuaa t B. Pndeaux, 

~R.tAndmvs,ChiUingvK>rtb, to (hew what was the Judgement of the Proteftant 

Bifhops in this Point. P57r-^J. 

According to the confequence of the Objectors grounds, either we are fure Chnft 

hath no Church or Miniftry, or not fure that he hath any. p 6f . 

Sevrall etker Objections Anfwcred. P 7 J. 

Presbyters may and muft Govern their Chwches 3 and have the power of the Keycs. 

How far Ordination isNeccflary. , p.gz. 

The Objection for Separation from us [Becaufe they may not i eeeivctheSacra- 
mei Kneeling,] Anfwered. p. 8 f . 

Some cautionary Conclusions to prevent mifunderftanding. p. 9 4 

An Exhortation to prefem and vigorous endeavours for Union, directed to the Mi- 
niftry. P-^f. 

A-,few words of Advice to the people of thefe Congregation^ whcfe Minifters re- 
fufe to AiTeciate with their Brethren. p. 107* 



of fome 




S I dare not undertake to give the full 
fenfe of all my Reverend Brethren who 
have fubfcribed to thefe Propofitions, 
fo I muft intreat the Reader to under- 
fland that I have no commiflion from 
them for any Explication of their 
mindes, further then what is done al 
ready in their words : and therefore 
that you muft not take what I Write as 
coming from them 3 but as my own private thoughts : and 
if in any thing you miflike my Interpretations, do not there 
fore rniflike our Propofitions : For it is the Text and not the 
Comment that is publiquely owned : The Text is theirs, the Com 
ment is mine. 

D 2 Yet 

Yet I thought rt meet to explain feme few points according 
to my own meaning, and according to what I heard from ray 
Brethren in their debates ; left the obfcurity fhould occafion the 
{tumbling of any, that have not had opportunity to understand 
ur intentions. 

And firft I muft intreat you to remember tbefe few Generals 

i. We never intended thcfe Propofitions,, for the taking 
any fober man ( of any of the Pkrties whofc Union we endea 
vour ) from his former Principles ; nor for the laying down 
of any middle way, in which the differing Pkrties may accom 
modate, by any abatement on each or any fide, of their for 
mer Opinions. For we know that can be no way of Generall 
Accord, without a long and full debate of all differences, with 
all perfons, or with ail the leaders that can fway the reft. For 
if we {hould fitisfie all that we conferre with , and joyntly 
agree upon fome abatement of our Opinion*; we cannot ex- 
ped that others (hould be ever the more altered or united, 
that hear not our reafons : Or if all (hould heat them, yec 
mens judgement* will be varioufly wrought on, according to 
the degrees of their ftrength or weakncfs; or according to 
their former prejudice and apprehcnfions ; and much accor 
ding to the inclination of their Wils, to Reformation, Holi- 
nefs , Unity and Peace. We do therefore fuppofc in thelc 
Propofitions, that thofc whom we unite with, do ftill retain 
their differing Judgements; And our bufinefs is bat this: Tt 
improve thefe Points therein Vee /ire all Agreed , for Mntnimon* 
frattice. Till we have opportunity to feek after an Accomo- 
dation of Opinions-,, or a conviftion of each ether, we re- 
folve, by Gods help, to clofe in an amicable practice of fo 
mach as we do ConfenE in. It is utterly Babe-teeming, any 
Member of hrift, to make more diviilons wilfully, becauic 
we are Receffitated to fome differences through our wcaknefs : 
and to unite and affociate in nothing, becaufe we cannot do 
it in all things: and to fly from each others focicty, as^nemici 
or aliens, b<?caufe we hold fome different opinions: as if yrc 
were not the Sons of one God, the Members of one Chrift, 
nor might live in the fame family or joyn ia the fame Churches 
or Worfhip, becaufe we are not of die fame intellectual com 


flexion in every point, ner ail mens knowledge of the farof 
ftature. We are not fiieh ftrangers to our felves and man*, 
kinde, as not to know, that we muft unavoidably be ofVan* 
cms Opinion*, while we live here in imperfedion ; and differ 
in part, while we know but in part. We fuppofe the Apoftlc 
never expeded that all the Corinthians fhould in ail things 
have the fame Opinions, when he fo importunately perfwades 
them, by the Name of our Lord Jefus Chrift, t fpeak the 
fame thing, and that there be no Divifions among them, but 
that they be perfedly joyned together in the fame minde, and 
in the fame judgement, i Cor. 1. 10. We remember his com 
mand, Phil. 3. 15,16. Let HI M many at he perfett be thtu 
winded i and if in any thing ye be etberwife minded, Gtd /ball 
reveal even thu unto jw : Neverthelefs Whereto We have, already 
tttained, let tu WalkJ>y the fame rule, let w minde the fame thing. 

2. You muft underftand, that we have no intent by this our 
Agreement to foreftall any further means or attempts for 
Accomodation, or neerer Unity : but contrarily to prepare 
for it; being confident that no way is fo likely to accomplilh 
it, as a concordant pradice of what we are agreed in, and 
the conftant amicable afTociadon and familiarity of the diilen- 
Cen. Nay Ionic of us have much more to propound to the 
Churches, for Conciliation and Accord, when ever God (hall 
call us to it, and let us fee that it is likely to be regarded or do 
any good. 

3. Much lefs do we take up with what we are now agreed 
on, as a perfe&, or ruily-fufficient way ; as if the points which 
arc laid by, and wherein the fercral Parties differ, did con* 
tain in them nothing of any moment; but all that is ufefuli 
were contained in thefe Points wherein we are all agreed. 
Nor do we intend to tye our fclres to take up with tkefc, and 
never to go further. But, as Chrid faith in another cafe, If 
**j man do the Will of God, he fball know, &c. So I verily think, 
that confcionable , friendly pradiflng of fo much of Chrifts 
Difcipline as we generally know , would have helpt us to 
know the reft fooncr then our pervcrfe contendings have done 
and would hare prevented thofe fad effeds of our Divisions, 
which Hwftlie heavy on foroe mensconfciences, here or here- 

D 3 4 I 

4- Imuft therefore efpecially intreat you to obferve, that 
whereas feveral things are left undetermined in thefe Propofl- 
tions, and you think in the reading, that yon are at a lofs for 
our meaning; expeding that all things fhould be particularly 
and pundually determined of, that we have done this purpofe- 
ly and of deftgn ; and therefore the errour is in your expedi 
tion of a more particular determination then will ftand with our 
ends. For feeing we intend but to lingleout what we know 
every party may agree to, without deferting his own princi 
ples ; we muft needs leave out thofe particulars wherein we are 
not agreed. 

5. Uaderftand that we have left many things to be pro re nata 
upon the emergent occafion when it comes to practice, agreed 
on at our Aflbciation-meetings, which we could not without 
many inconveniences , agree on in theie Proposition before 
hand : Efpecially things that vary according to circumftances 
of time, place, perfons, occafions,^r. 

6. Understand, that though in many things we have tied up 
our felves by thefe Proportions, from ading in a way of 
iingularity. Yet in many Points we have left each party and 
perfon to the liberty of their judgement : fo that they may go 
Above this our Agreement, fo be it, in fo doing they go not 
Againft it. 

More particularly 

i. Whereas in the firtt General Proportion we profefs, not 
to addid our felves to parties, but to pradice unanimoufly 
thofe known truths that the fober and godly of each Party are 
agreed in.] We mean only thofe Parties who acknowledge 
/Difcipline, and are fo [[fober]] as to difclaim thofe Princi 
ples which are utterly inconiiitent with the healing of our 
breaches, and the Peace and Union of the Churches. Parti 
cularly we mean the Presbyterians, Indepeadants, and Eptfco- 
pall who are Moderate and Judicious. ,We mean not any 
Seekers that difclaim Difcipline; nor Pipiits; nor Popifh E- 
pifcopall Divines, who will have all the world come to che 
Romilh Polity , or elfe they muft have no peace. But it is 
.only the .Proteftant Epifcopall Divines , whofe principles I 



take to be confiftcnt with our Propofitions : And if there be 
any other Party fo fober as to depart no further from the 
waies of Peace, it is fueh that we mean. But if it had been our 
intent to have laid by all that any Party will controvert, we 
(hould have agreed on nothing. 

2. Where in the fame Proportion we fay at prefent only 
to practice] we intend not that every man of us is tied from, 
pradifmg any thing but what is fo agreed on : But that we do 
Agree in and tye our felves only1| to fo much but may not- 
withftanding privately differ in our practice, fo far as we have 
not reft rained our felves in this Agreement^ and are not retrain* 
ed by Gods Word. 

3. The eighth Proportion leaves many weighty Cafes un 
determined about excluding fuch haynous offenders, whofe 
finne is either notorious, or generally fufpeded, and yet for 
want of accufers and profecutors are never brought to Ju- 
ftice? and alfo about perfons who are under a long trial! } &c. 
But we take thefe cafes to be lt;ch as muft be ufualiy determi 
ned according to circw-m ftances upon knowledge of the par 
ticular-cafe : and therefore fitteii to be determiued at our 
Meetings, "when it fhall fall out :. and not to trouble knd puz 
zle our lelves with fuch Cafes before they fall; feeing we can 
not well make any agreement before hand ( except very ge- 
nerall) but what wiii be found defe&ive iu the; application.-: 
Only thus much i fhould* advife, that if it : be known that any 
perion is guilcy of a capitall crime ( as for example of Adul 
tery ) though we be nor bound alway to acciife them openly, 
or to bring them to- fuch a confeiiion or felf-accufation as 
may hazzard their lives ; yet i. Th-e Paftor may fufpend 
them and m iome cafes require f he people to avpid them, when 
the fad ts publxjueiy known (though tr^e party not profecu- 
ted -J and give yuc a generall intimation of the fault, as known 
already; though perhaps the Evidence will not hold in Law. 
(As I have known peribns that openly confefs Adultery at 
home, but denying it before the Judge, come off as if they 
were innocent; and yet confefs it again- when they come 
home.) And I fhould think that fuch perfons fhould not be r 
re-admitted to Communion, till they do manifeft publiquefe- 
rious penitence in the Congregation: ^but only in General! 



termcs ( feeing they are not bound to acctife themfelves, fe 
as to expofe their lives to danger :) As thus I confefs be 
fore God and this Congregation that I am a haynous fmner,, 
and unwortby of Communion with the Church : the parti" 
cularsl need not exprefs, feeing the Congregation may eafily 
know y meaning. #*.] Whether it be meet that EcclefiafticaU 
ccnfurc, or the Magiftrates cenfure go iirft, we do not go abouc 
Co determine. 

4 % Concerning the tenth Propofition ( which will be mod 
quciioncd ) I defirc it may be obfervcd : I. That we meddle 
not with the term Excommunication. ] 2. And therefore 
they that fay we meddle with the Thing, muft define !xcom 
munication, and (hew that the work taat we here agree oa 
doth reach that definition 3. Which if they do, then they 
trill make Excommunication to be no more then thii applicad* 
on of Chnfts do&rinc to * particular perfon and cafe, which 
every Miniftcr of the Gofpel may perform : For we mentita 
in our Agreement no more. 4. I am fure that delivering up 
to Satan, tnd the great Anathematizing Excommunication, is 
commonly taken to go much further and contain more, then 
we here conclude on. 5. Yet obferre, thai we here foppofc 
the faft and faultinefs prored beyond doubt : and when we 
fpcak of Minifters Applicatory requiring the Avoidance of fuch 
perfons* if any think we wrongfully authorize him to do this 
without the Presbytery, Congregation, or BiOiop ; remember 
that we fpeak not here of examining Wicncffes, much left gi 
ving them their Oathes, or the like preparation for difcorverp 
ff the guilt. How ftrre people or any others may have * 
hand in this we do not determine. 6. Nor do we determine 
whether it muft needs be more Minifters then one, that muft 
agree in this , before the publique Application : yet after* 
uferid, we hare limited our felves in this for Unity, Peace, and 
avoiding of rtfh applications. Though for my own part, I am 
?ery confident that it is dieir Errour, whoever they be, that 
deny ihe power of Excommunication it fclf to a fingle Pa- 
ftor,atlcaft, where he is the fole Overfecr of that particular 

The Objections agaiaft this tenth Propofuion, Iwll.anfwer 

j ni 

5. The 


5-.; Tbt i i th Propofitk>n for Sufipenfion, contains itsowafufH- 
f tent proof,as thofe that will well obterve it,may dilcern, 

6. Concerning the 12 th Prop, iniuii tell you^thac we urr^t agi\ 
to the loofe practice of thofe Miriifters and Churches, who think it 
enough to keep people from the Sacrament, and never proceed fur 
ther with them in way of Difciplinc : but let 500. or a icco. live in 
a Parifh without any more then fuch a Sufpenilon : wlienas Sufpen* 
fion is but in order to their Tryall, or their Reformation orlleje- 
6hon thereupon. Yea they determin not,nor is it known,whether all 
thefe perfons are members of their Churcbes,or not ? Many Realbns 
we have againft this courfe, befides what are mentioned in the Pro- 
pofitions. : 

7. We take it that the 15* Proportion contained! the true mean, 
between the Ufurped Power of fome Paftors, to binde the People by 
a known erring fentence,to go againft Gods Word ; and the Ufurped 
Power which many pretend to, of Ruling the Church by their Major 
Vote. But how far the Congregation fhould firft have Cognifance 
of the matter, or be heard in the debate j or how far the Minifters 
muit endeavour their confent, or fufpend their own adions,for want 
of their confent, we do not determin. And therefore all moderate 
Presbyterians and Independents may well agree with us in this ; be- 
caufe its no Power that we deny the Paftors, but a Power of binding 
men to go againft Gods word ; and it is not any of their Liberty that 
we deny the People, but only Ruling Mmifteriall Authority, whick 
God never gave thera,we muft needs deny them. 

8. Concerning the iy th Propofitiorv(which many will ftumble at) 
I defire you to obferve thefe things. 

i. That as we avoid the Titles of Lay-Elders and Preaching- 
Elders, fo we do purpofely avoid the determination of that Con- 
troverfie, Whether Chrift hath appointed Ecclefiafticali Elders, di- 
ftind in Office from Teaching-Elders, having no Authority to 
Preach, Baptize or Adminifter the Lords Supper, though they 
have Gifts? I confefs my own private opinion is, that neither 
Scripture nor Antiquity did know any fuch Church-Officers : But 
as I fo much reverence and value the contrary-minded, as not to 
expeft that my Judgment fhould ftand in any competition with thdrs, 
or in the leaft to fway any man to my opinion from theirs ( though 
upon the concurrent Judgment of fo many Learned men that arc of 
the fame opinion with me, I might reasonably expeft, that other 
aiens reputation fhould create n prejudice ;) fo it is nothing to my 

E Brethren^ 


Brethren, nor thefenfeof ouir Ajjfcfcment, tthat .my. private opinion 
is. We are not fo unconfcionably felf-conceited or diviflve, as to 
think we muft or may rejeft all thofe from our Communion, that dif 
fer in this Point from us : or that it is a matter of fo great moment, 
that may hinder our fraternall and peaceable A (Toe iation. 

2. We have therefore agreed of the work of Aflifting-Elders,and 
leave the difeuffion of their farther Authority, and diftindion of 
their Office from Teaching-Elders, toothers. 

3 . And that each party may well agree to this Proposition, with 
out forfaking their Principks, is beyond doubt. For the Presbyte 
rians and the Congregationall party, they both are for fuch Ekfers, 
as (hall Rule, and not adminifter Sacraments? and though feme of 
one fort, fay, they may preach, i. They fay nor that they muH 
preach where the Teaching-Elders are well and prefent; 2. And 
perhaps it is becaufe they would allow another gifted member to do 
the like. And for the Epifcopall Divines, their pra&ice and their 
writings prove what I fay: For they have ever flnce the Refor 
mation allowed great numbers of Readers in England* of far low 
er abilities then we exprefs in our Proportions; fuch as never 
preached^and fome that were fain to labour for their livings in fe- 
cular employments, as this Coantcey knows. And though they al 
lowed them to Bapttfe and adminifter the Lords Supper, yet they ne 
ver affirmed that they muft do it, when there was an abler Mitfifter of 1 
the fame Church to do it* And in their writings they do maintain the 
lawfullnefsof placing fuch Reading Minifters inChappels orParifh 
Churches under abiePaftors. So that its paft doubt, that we are all 
agreed, that there may be fuch Officers, or Elders chofen to do the 
work that is here expreffed. And if any think it a matter of fo great 
neceflity, that we agree in our belief of thefe Elders further Power,as 
that we muft not Affoci&te with thofe that agree not, I would intreat 
him to tell me,why it is not in our Creed ? or why it never was in the 
Creed of any Church ? or whether no Church had ever a fufficient 
Creed, fo large as to contain all Points of abfolute necetfky to fal- 
vation, or without which, .we muft avoid mens fociety ? or whether 
he dare yet put it in his Creed among fundamentals 5 or Points of fuch 
neceility I Believe that Lay oi:meer- Ruling Elders are, or are not 
Jttre divino Q Or whether he accufe not the Scripture it felf of infuf- 
iiciency, for fpeaking fo darkly of fundamentals themfelves, as that 
the moft Godly -and^Learned are not able t?o underfbndk? And 
whether he lay noe -a ground of fcparatiou torn ffiu4tk^desi>f emi- 


ncnt Learning and I^tfy* yea from ^-hole Qiuislie^ which Chrift 
himfeif owneth^ and will not allow us to iepa rate fromi 

4. And obfcrve iiirtlier,> that .the , Jilder.s that we here fpeak of, 
are only Affiftants to able Preachers j we do not fay, that fuch may 
be allowed of alone, where tli ere is no other to preach (though 
what might be done incafeof fteceffity, I will not determin.) But; 
if a great Church have one or two aile flaen to Preach publikely, 
and will moreover appoint fonaefoter, godly, orthodox men to 
help them in Private overfight, Jnftmdio n,- admonition and re 
proof; and if one call thefe Lay-Elders ,or Ruling-Elders, and ano 
ther take them to be inferior Minifters, as fome fober Chappeli 
Readers were, I would not quarrell , about the notions or Titles 
while we agree about the work to.be done. Nor would I dare to 
reproach them with the name of Dumbe doggs on one ficte, or Lay- 
Eideers(as dumbe)on the other. 

5 . I thought meet alfo to tell you thus much of my own opinion ; 
that it feems to me the beft way, ( at our firft ordering of our Chur 
ches according to thefe Proportions) to take in none but School- 
matters, Phyficians,or other Learned men to tre Elders ( where fuch 
are to be had that are-meet :). and for, thofe of our Abler hearers 
that are unlearned, that it will be ritteft firil totry them in theOffice 
of Deacons : both becaufe the Office of Deacons is moft unqueftio- 
nable to all forts and parties ; , and fo it wiH avoid the reproaches of 
diifenters : ;; and betcmfe the Apoftles made Deacons before they- or 
dained any fixed Elders of particular Churches* and tfieynuufca- 
bier men Deacons then any of us are ; and therefore none may think 
the Office to be below him ; and becaufe it is orderly to afcend by 
degrees: and the Apoftles words i 77^.4.8,9,1 0,11,12,1 3. toge 
ther with the conftant expreffions and pradice of Antiquity, do (hew 
that this is a degree to the Eider (hip ; and that Deacons have.more 
power about Word and Sacraments, then is: commonly allowed to 
meer-Ruling Elders ; and therefore may be more helpful! to us ^ 
yea that they joyned with the Presbyters inConfiftory,is the common 
opinion. And the danger of mifguiding and dividfng our Congre 
gations by men of weak Judgments, is foigreat 5 that I tjiink it much 
titter to try them firft in an Office of known Inferiority ( for all con- 
fefs that Deacons fhould be Guided by the Elders,) wherein they 
may be as ferviceable to the Church ; then to begin them in an Office 
of meer Power, wherein they will think their Votes tobeofequall 
Authority wkh the moft Judicious Teachers, and fo may.btfeed oon- 

E 2 tentions. 


tentions,or foment Errors or factions in the Church * and yet be lefs 
capable of doing fervice,then the Deacons are ( See M r Noyes Tempts 
Mcafuredy of the Office of Deacons and Elders.) This courfe there 
fore I have propounded to my Brethren of this Affectation ; anct 
they think as I do: But for other Brethren that Xoyn with usYome 
living neer 30 miles from us, ( fo that we have more feldome oppor 
tunities to meet,) we cduld not yet propound it to them. If any {hall 
refufe the Office of Deacons, as too mean for them, they (hall there- 
fey difcover that Pride that will prove them unfit to be either Elders 
*r Deacons; and you will have caufe to thank God, that thereby a 
mifchief ro the Church is prevented, which might have followed, if 
ilich unhumbled men had crept into Authority. 

6. Buc the great Objection againft this Proposition will be ( by 
lome ) That we allow none to be Elders but thofe that are ordained, 
and fo overthrow meer-Ruling Elders.. To which I anfwer : i .Theie 
Brethren niuft coniider, that we are forced for unity to fpeakindi- 
iinftly of all that are meer Afiifting Elders and do net actu 
ally preach and admimfter Sacraments,- whether they take then> 
Iciy.cs to have Authority to do more - ( as other Minifters ) or not i 
now they will confers that fuch inferior or Affixing Minifters: imiife 
be Ordained : and we cannot now diftinguifh. 2. I never eould 
karn that it is the Judgment of Presbyterians or Congregational 
jmen, that it is unlawful! to Ordain meer-Ruling Elders, And if they 
tfiaydoit, why fhould they not yield to it for peace, though they 
think not that they w#ft do it? 3, 1 confefs I know of no El 
ders mentioned in Scribture, without Ordination ; and do defpair of 
ever feeing it proved that theApoftles did appoint two forts of El 
ders, one Ordained and tbe other not Ordained. The contrary! 
cioub* not to prove by fuflkient Indudion. 4. Deacons muft be Or 
dained that are inferior to Elders ; why then (hould not Elders be 
Ordained > 5. Let our Brethren take heed left they loofe all , their 
told of that (hew they have in Scripture for meer-Ruling Elders ( I 
mean quoad poteft /item, not quoad exercitium or dinar tunLj,) if they 
once difclaim all thofe asno fuch Ruling Elders, who were Ordained. 
It feems then that wken the Apoftles Ordained Elders in every 
Churh, and when .Titus was left to Ordain Elders in every City, ic 
was no meer-Ruling Elders that they Ordained,or were appointed to 
Ordain ! 6. I confefs I am loath ( without more Reafons then I yec 
know ) to give the Intruders of the Miniftry fo much encouragement, 
cell -them, men may ordinarily be Ruling Elders without; Ordi 
nation ! 


nation ? For doubtlefs a man may much more Preach up and down 
in publike occafionaily without Ordination : I mean, more may be 
faid for it. Even fome of the moft Learned Epifcopall Divines think, 
that by the Rifhops allowance private men may preach, and that it 
belongs more to the Paftor to take care what Doctrine is taught his 
peopJe,then that himfelf be the Teacher. And moft allow the preach 
ing of Probationers. And if you add to this that there is no need of 
Ordination to the Office of Church-Governing, I know partly what 
will follow. 

7. Yet a greater doubt is behind, and tfiat is, How we would have 
thcie men Ordained ? I anfwer, i , We have not determined of that: 
We purpofely avoid the point of Ordination ; becaufe the diftarice 
ber.veen the Epifcopall Divines and others is well known in that 
point : and we rciblve not to put fuch controverted Points into our 
Agreement ; left thereby we r.eceffarily exclude the difTenters. Our 
bufinefs is not now ( as is faid) to Reconcile differences in judgment : 
much lefs to divide from thofe that differ from us : but to practice 
unanimoufiy fomuch as we are agreed in. 2. We leave therefore 
every man in this to his own Judgment. Thofe that are for Bifhops, 
may be Ordained by them with a Presbytery, if they can obtain it. 
Thofe that are againft them, may be Ordained by the Ailociated Pa- 
ftors of that Aflociation, the Prefident performing the Action. 
Thofe that fear danger from the Law of the Land, if they Ordain 
without Authority, may fend men to fome neighbour County that 
hath Authority. Thofe that will not ufe the Name of Ordination, 
may yet ufe the Thing : which is nothing but the folemne Defigna- 
tion or Appointment of a fit Perfon to the Office,by Competent men: 
which is moft fitly accompanied with Prayer and Impofitron of 
hands, where they may be had. 3 , To avoid fome of thefe contefts, 
if Deacons only be firft 0rdained,as I before mentioned, it will pre 
vent the quarrels that fome mayefte be drawn to by difference of 
Judgment. For many moderate Epifcopall men will allow Presby 
ters to Ordain Deacons, that will not allow them to Ordain Presby 
ters. As for thofe that will fay,Thefe are no true Officers, nor to be 
acknowledged ( whether Deacons or Presbyters) who were not Or 
dained by a Bifhop ; and thereupon will take occafion for a fchifme 
in our Congregations I ihall fpeak more fully to their fatisfadion 

9. Though I think few will queftion the I r, wfo^nefs of what K in 
the 1 8 th Proportion, yet I fuppofe many wiiiqueftiori the Conve- 

E 3 niency 


nierteyofit: Some will fay, It looks like Independency to call our 
People to fuch Profeifions, which are real! Covenants. Some will 
fay, We fhali occafton E>ivifions in our Congregations, uponOur 
Peoples %upling and refufing it. But I doubt forne will have a worfe 
Objection in their mindes ; That they fhali hereby diminifh their 
Congregations, or lofe the Peoples affections, and thereby lofe pare 
of their Maintenance. To this point, I {hall fir ft premife fome expli 
cation of our meaning, and then give you thofe Reafons of our Ile- 
folution herein, which were propounded and debated at our mee 

1. Underfland that we are all agreed among our felves, that our 
prefent Parifhes ( I mean not all in England, but all ours that joyned 
in thefe debates ) are true particular organized Churches of Chrift : 
and therefore^hat we require not this Profeflion as a Church-making 
Covenant, but for Reformation of thofe that are Churches already ; 
and as a means for our more facile and fuccefsfull exercife of fome 
Difcipline and Government of our Congregations. 

2. Yef we thought not meet to put thefe our Principles down in 
our Agreements: but retain them as our own private thoughts : 
becaufe being no Fundamentals, nor neer the Foundation,, we can 
agree with thofe that differ from us in this point of Judgment, fo they 
agree in pra$ice : And therefore we have left it fo open, that any 
man may fubfcribe to it, who yet thinketh that we are no true Chur 
ches, for want of a Church-Covenant, or for want of a foiemn Call 
of our Minivers ^ fobek thefe perfons, will but acknowledge us to be 
Churches and Mtniikrs, -after our publike Profeflion, Confentand 
Aflbciation though they will not acknowledge it before. 

3 . We have not tyedour felves or any Brother, to the ufe of any 
one particular .figae to be required of the People in making this Pro 
feflion ? Whether by fubfcribing their Names,or lifting up the hand, 
or fpeaking tli^itCohfent. For we doubt not but this is an Indiffe 
rent thing ;"TKai. which we require is fome Exprellion of Affent 
and Confent : but how to exprefs it, we leave to the prudence of 
particular Pallors who are to guide their own Congregations. For 
my part I ..Intend to.iave.rhe Names gf all the Members in a Church- 
Book ( the Ajiult iir one Colume and the Infants in another ) and 
that the Members (hall either write their own Names in it,or confenc 
that I write them, this Profeflion being prefixed to be fubfcribed. 

4. We have left it undetermined, Whether the Confent fhall be 
exprefled particularly man by mar^ or many together ? and whether 



they fliall repeat each man themferves the words of the Ptofeffioh 
only Confent to it on the Minifters recitall * We judge that iefler 
Congregations maybe more punctually dealt with then great ones 
can be : But yet I fhould advife in the greateft, that it be not fo hud- 
led up as to elude the Intent and fruftrate all : and therefore that 
fome time be taken in doing it ; fome families coaimgiin one day, 
and fome another. And for thofe that we have fufficient caufe to 
fufpect of grofs Ignorance, we have agreed that the Officers fir ft try 
rheir Knowledge in private (becaufe many cannot exprefs themfelves 
openlyjand when they are fatisfied in it, that we take the Profeffion 
of their Confent only in publike ; acquainting the Congregation of 
our fatisfadion ; who are bound to acquiefce fo far in the judgment 
of their Pallors, when themfelves hear the perfon profefs his Cenfent 
though he do not exprefs ( himfelf ) the Articles that he confent- 
tth to. 

2. Our Reafons debated on for this Practice, were thus gi 
ven in : 

Concluf. we have Reafon to require ( M things mw ft and ) ft wore 
<txprefs pgnificatien of- our Peoples Confent to our IMiniflry and Mini* 
fieri all Attuns-tand their JMemforfliif f their f articular Churches. 

Reafon i . We have now by realon of the Licentioufnefs and Apo- 
ft afie of the times, mote reafon to-queftion concerning many of our 
Members, whether their hearing fignifie their Confent, i. Becaufe 
many profefs the contrary. 2. We know fome Infidels and others 
little better, that come to Church fometimes, meerly to avoid the 
cenfure of the people, or to pleafe their ears ( and this they have ac 
^knowledged.) 3 . Multitudes in many Parifties will not receive the 
Lords Supper with us. 

Reafon 2. The Liberty given in thefe times hath taken away feme 
Other bo nds,which formerly were laid on men, to conftrain them to 
acknowledge and fubmit to theMiniftry and Ordinances: and to obey 
the Church-government that was then in force. We are therefore 
neceffitated to make ufe of the bond ef their own Confent, and to 
require that it be more exprefs ,then fof/nerly it hath been: 

Reafa. Minifters that were ftudious of the good of theFfock, did 
( very many of them) heretofore difcern the need of an exprefe con- 
fent, that they might have more certainty of the extent of there 
Charge then the Bounds of a ParifWan give them. Only they : (ttu!y) 
Ciaintained that our Churches were true Churches.,; without^ more 
cx.prefs Confent then wetheivhad^and that it teoded buti^th^W^ 


teing of a Church, and not to the Being, that the Confent ,be more 
exprefs then formerly : But now the Impediments of thofe times are 
fo farre removed, as that we have full liberty to choofc what way of 
exprefiing our Confent we (hall judge beft j ic befeems us to choofe 
the moft ciear^ full and fatisfadory. 

Reaf.q. Multitudes will be uncapable of thofe publique, perfonall 
admonitions, which arc in feverall cafes our duties, and we have a- 
greed to perform, except they firft know that we refolve on this 
courfe and in the generall do confent to it. They will take it for an 
unfufferable injury, to be fo dealt with, meerly becaufe they live in 
our Parilhes, when they never confented to fuch a courfe. Nay ic 
feems to me, that fat leaft as things now ftand) we cannot without 
their exprefs Confent effedualiy ufe any further Difcipline with them 
as Church-members, then meerly to keep them from the Lords Sup 
per, which is now fo common, tnat it feems to them as no difgrace or 
penalty. As long as they are continued as Members of our Churches, 
and have their children baptized,and themfelves joyn with us in Gods 
lolemn Praifes and all other Ordinances, and have freedom from all 
publique particular Reproofs and Cenfures, being never noted by 
the Minifter to be avoided, they little care for forbearing the Sacra 
ment ; we fee thoufands will keep away themfelves without our ex- 
clufion. If any can (now) exercife any more Difcipline without their 
peoples known fore-confent, let the practice of the Congregations in 
England witnefs. If it can be done, Why is it not ? They will refufc 
to come near us, anfwer us,or regard any thing we fay or do. 

Reafa. Let thofe that better know the Law of the Land confider, 
whether it be not neceflary to our own peace to free us from Law- 
fuits, that we have firitthe peoples exprefs Confent? and whether 
they may have no Adion againft a Minifter elfe for naming any man 
in the Congregation by Reproof, and pronouncing him a pcrfontc* 
be avoided ? and fo no Difcipline will be exercifed. 

Reafl6. We have found by long and fad experience, that the peo 
ple underftand not generally* the nature of Implicit Profefilons, and 
do indeed ufe them often as no Profefiions at all ; and that their raeer 
Implicit Covenanting with God,and obfcure Profefiions of Faith, not 
underftood, and dark worftuppings of God, have tended much to de- 
ftroy the life and being of Chriftianity, with many that content them 
felves with the name ; and that nothing is more eafie, then to turn all 
Profcffions, Engagements and Ads or Worfhip, intomeer formall 
(hews, and deny the powcr,and deftroy it thereby ; Why then fhould 


we fefolvedly choofe that way, that hath produced fuch evils, and & 
like to continue them ? 

Reaf.7. It is evident that the end of a publique Profeffion and En 
gagement is a fatisfadory difcovery of mens mindes, and a firmer 
obliging them to God and their Superiours, and to each other : that 
fo their duties, as to allthefe, may be the furelier performed; and 
they may more eafily be convinced of their fin in cafe of H^-perfor- 
mance. Now who knoweth not that the moreexprefs and folemn 
fuch Profeflions and Engagements be, the fitter they are for the at 
tainment of their ends ? And that which is beft fitted to the end,is the 
beft means. 

Reaf.%. It is agreeable to the excellent nature of the Truths and 
Duties of Chriftianity, and the great importance of fuch bufinefTes 
(as to the Church and the fouls ot men) to be as open and//*// as is pq(- 
iibie in the owning and acknowledging them. Truth fuffers moft by 
being obicured ; and Duty, by being but fuperficially, ignorantly 
and refervedly owned ana performed : And how much muft the 
Church and mens fouls hereby fuflfer ! God loves the moft open Con* 

Reaf.Q. Many of the Separation do (on this ground efpecially) de 
ny that our Parilhes are true Churches, becaufe they are not tied by 
Covenant or any exprefs Confent into a Body Politick. On the fame 
ground alfo they deny our Paftors to be true Minifters, t>ecaufe they 
have not the exprefs Call or Confent of the people. Though I doubt 
not but this is their Errour, yet the fatisfying of fo many exceptions 
Brethren, and the removing of that which may ftill occafton their of 
fence and hurt,and the continuance of Separation and the Churches 
divifions, is lurely a work well worth our performing, and which we 
(hould endeavour as far as poflibly we may. 

.Redf.io. The fame want of exprefs Confent is an offence to our 
Brethren of the Congregational 1 way, and hindreth our clofure with 
them. And though fome think that this is rather a difTwafive,and that 
we fhould the rather fhun it, left we fhould feem to approve of their 
Church making Covenant, and fo to recede from our former prin 
ciples, yet I think this coriclufion is much contrary to the Scripture, 
and die practice of Paul, in Circumciflng 77w%,in Preaching pri 
vately to them of reputation, Gal.2.2. and becoming all things to all 
men ; a Jew to the Jews, and a Greek to the Greeks. The love of 
our Brethren, and of the Churches Unity and Peace, (hould make 
godly mencondefcend in a greater matter then this, as long as we all 
acknowledge it a thing lawful!. F Reaf. 


We require nothing but what hath been the Ancient 
pr a ft ice of the Church : that the People were ufed Exprefly to Con- 
fent to their Chofen appointed Teachers, if not to Choofe them 
ea even the Bidiopstnemfelves ;) (yea that they might Rejed 


unworthy Bifhopswheneftabliflied,) and that Difcipline was exer- 
cifed before them, exprefly and more rigoroufly then we pretend. to 3 
is well known to all that are acquainted with Antiquity. See for one 
Cjpri&n Epift. 68 ./>, 200,20 1 3 202. (dit\ Gcxlartij:) and fee more m 
BlondelL de fureflebis inRegim. cckf. And for folemn profeflion 
of the Faith, it hath been of long and conftant ufe, as in all parts of 
the Chriftian world, fo in our own Congregations in England, where 
the People were every Lords day to Profefs their Faith, * by Handing 
up at the Recital! of the Creed. And the Sacraments are Seals of the 
Covenant : and therefore all that receive the Sacraments muft enter 
or renew their Covenant. 

AV/t/12. Thole ( moderate men ) that are moftagainft Church- . 
Covenanting?, fpeak only againft theNecefiity of them; but the 
Lawful! nefs they deny not, no nor the Convenience in cafe of iihei- 
ty ; no nor the Neceflhy of the jiiing > but only of the Circumftan- . 
xials, and manner of expreilion, ancLends by fome affixed. They 
require that the People exprefly Confent totheClioice of their Mi- 
nifter, and that they be examined before the Sacrament of their 
knowledge in ihe Fundamentals. This differs from what we pro- - 
pound 3 butincircumftances. And J fhould think it more feafonable 
and convenient, to be fatisfied of our Peoples fpiritu all Efficiency 5 
and capacity for Church-Communion, at our firft Reformation of a 
xdifordered Church, or in a welt-ordered Church, at their firft tran . 
iition out of the ftate of Imperfect Infant Hembers,and admiffion in- - 
to the namberof Adult members, ( and. after this, to fuppofe their 
Right good to Communion and Church priviledges, till it be on fuf- - 
ficient grounds difproved, excepted againft or queitioned by any,) 
then to try them as only for admiffion to the Lords Supper/uffering 
them to live quietly in the Reputation of Members, fo they will noc 
come to, the Table of the Lord. 

Thefe are the Reafons, for fubftance, that were given in ; on con- 
llderation whereof we refolved on this Pradice: which I have 
therefore repeated, that others may confider of them,who elfe mjghc . 
through mifunderitanding us,queftion our way. 

Laitly, Let me add this : Our firft Conclufipn was only, of the 
Neceility (in thefe times) of the Peoples acknowledging us to be 


ibeir l>aftor$* without which i,We cannot know our Charge. 2. Nor 
our Duty. 3, Nor therefore will difcharge our Duty. 4. Andefpe- 
daily cannot exerdfe any confiderable Difcipline, But for the Pub- 
like Profeffion and Covenant with God,we take in it, only as very fie 
to go along with the former that men might he engaged to God be 
fore they be engaged to their Overfeers ; and might firft be clearly 
difcovered Members of the Univerfall Church, before they profefs 
, themfelves Members of a partiular Church , 

We did at the fame time anfwer two great Objections, i. Of 
thofe that fay, The Apoftles required no fuch exprefs Confent 

Anf.i. That Negative cannot be proved, though it were not writ 
ten that they required it. 2. The Chriftians of thofe times gave a 
moft full exprefiion of their Confent to their particular Minifters,and 
to be Members of their particular Churches, 

1. In that before the Church the Apoftles appointed them Elders 
-in every Church, whom they openly Accepted and Reverenced. 

2. For Deacons, they bid the Church choofe fevenmen whom 
they might Ordain. 

3. The People voluntarily (when no Magiftrate didconftrain 
them) did continue in the Apoftles Dodrine and Fellowfbip, and 
breaking of Bread and Prayer, and fubmitted to their Paftors as thofe 
that were over them and Governed them in the Lord : and without 
the Peoples exprefs Confent, none could then have Ruled them, by 
meer Ecclefiafticall Rule. 

4. Remember that all this was done in times of perfecution, when 
it hazarded their lives to acknowledge the Miniftry, and to frequent 
Church AfTemblies; which made the Apoftle ^^.10.25. exhort 
them not to forfake the Aflembling of themfelves together, asfomc 
( for fear ) did. Now this is a fuller fignification of Confent to the 
Miniftry and to Church member{hip,then dwelling in a Parifh is or 
the meeting to hear a Sermon is, when either Law or Cuftom brings 
them, and they difcover by many wayes, that they either know 
not what a Church is, or what the Minifters Power is, or fubmit not, 
and Confent not to it.Further perufe the Scriptures that we have cited 
in the Profeffion. 

5. Remember yet, that I maintain thatGod doth in Scripture re 
quire bn\y[Confent fignified Q but hath not tied us to this or that par 
ticular figne for [Jignifying it :] but having given us generall Rules 
that all things be done to Edification, Decently,^, he hath left it to 
humane Prudence to determin gf the particular figne (whether voice, 

F 2 fubfcription, 

fubfcription^r.j according to thefe Rules : And hcrcin,thc Paftors 
arc to confult with their People about the Convenience ; but the 
People to obey the determination of their Guides. So that if the A- 
poftles h*d required no other figne of Confent but Aduall Meeting, 
yet it followed! not that therefore we muft require no more. , 

2. The other great Objection was from the many Inconvenien 
ces that may follow ; in that it will feem fo new and ftrange to our 
People. To which I anfwer : Practice but the Rules which we have 
agreed on in the manner of doing it, and all the Inconveniences 
will be avoided, except thofe that muft needs be expeded by afl 
that will be faithful! in the Miniftry, and will not do the work of the 
Lord deceitfully, 

Yet obfe*ve that we have left thofe Brethren at Liberty to negleft- 
this, who will manifeft to the Affociated Minifters, that they can bet 
ter order their Congregations and exercife Difcipline, without requi 
ring this exprefs Confent,then with it. Alia that we refolve not that 
thofe muft do it immediatly, whofe People ,are not yet ready or ca 
pable, either through prejudice, ignorance or other impediments, 
Ignatius Ef. ad Poljcarp. bids, hold frequent AfTemblies^and enquire 
after all by Nameifervants and maids,&-c. muft not be difclaimed. . 

10. Concerning the .20 th Proportion aboutConftant Meedngs, 
and the Rules of Affociation agreed on therein; obfervc that we 
meddle nor with that great Qneftion, Whether the Minifters of one 
Church are to exercife a proper Government over another ? But , 
laying aiide the Queftion of Clalficall Regiment, we only determin 
or what all neighbour Minifters and Churches are bound, to, either 
in common duty to one another as Chriftians ,( as to give a Re^fon 
of our Hope to thofe that ask it : to fadsfie an offended. Brother, to 
Lore one another,^,) or elfe as Minifters ; and efpecially for the 
Unity and Peace of die Churches ; which every man ought to ufe 
his utmoft $kill,induftry and power,to attain and maintain. . 
$o muck for the explication of the Proportions.* 

A brief Exflicttiw offiwe Pajfagcs in the Proftfiion. 

I Intend not an Expofidon of this Profeffion, which would be to 
write a Body of Theologie. We have put it all in as, plain termes 
as we could, thaf k might need the lefs explication, J. had once 



thought to have given you a Syntheticall or Analytical! fcheme of 
it, that by difcerning our Method, you might difcern our Reafons 
for the location and order of each part and terme : But conlidering 
that the People, for whofe fake I write, cannot make ufe of fuch a 
thing; and that the Judicious can eafily Analyfe it all of theaifelves : 
L will let that pals., 

1. 1 muft give you to underftand, that the Reafons of our prefix 
ing the Preface were thefe : i.That our People may fee the Grounds 
and Necetfity of our Pradice. 2. That we may not be thought to 
go on their Grounds, that take our Churches for no Churches be- 
tore an exprefs Covenant,fuperadded to all former figns of Confent; 
or that we may not be judged to go about the gathering of new 
Churches where were none before ; when indeed we do all this but 
in/Reformation of thofe that are Churches already. 3. That our 
people may be the more engaged, while they confent to our Reafons 
as well as our Articles. 

2. Obferve farther, that yet we ftiall not refijfe Communion or 
Aflbciation with any Church, Paftor or Perform that meerly rerufetfJ 
our Preface,and will joy a with us in our Profeflion, though on other 
grounds : as^. if he take our Churches for no Churches before this 
Profefiion have made them Churches. 

3. We (hall not therefore be peremptory in urging the Preface on 
any of our People (no mare, then on neighbour-Minifters ;) nor 
urge them to ufe it as they muft do the Profeflion : though we defire 
as full a Union as may be had, , and therefore that none will caufe- 
lefly difTent. 

4. For the Brofefiion it felf, underftand, that we-difiinguilh be 
tween that which makes a man a Member of the Univerfall Church, 
(which muft go firft) and that which makes or declares a man to be 
a Member of a Particular Church. And therefore we have firft put 
down fo much as is neceflary to the former(largely, as being of moft 
weight:) and then put down that which is neceffary to the later 

5. That Faith which every Chriftian muft have and profefs, con- 
fifteth i . In the Afflent of his Underftanding to the Truth of Funda 
mentals, 2. And in the Confent of his Will : i. To the Relations 
between God and him. . 2. And the Benefits following thofe Rela 
tions ; which both are offered. 3. And to the Duties commanded, 
on the ground of thofe Relations. 4. Efpecially thofe Duties which 
are made by God, the Condition of our Receiving the faidRela- 

F 3 tions. 


Benefits j and & are of. flat -neceflity thereto. Now in the 
ee Creed { co^imo^y fo called ) both theie are impiied in the 
phrafe of [[Believing in .- j] But becauire the great .ftop now is in mens 
Wills, for fubmitting to the Pradice of Profefled Truths ; there 
fore we have thought it neceflary ( having fo much Scripture war 
rant ) to require diftinftly a more exprefs Profeffion i. OfAf- 
fent to the Truth. 2. Qf the forefaid Confent : the expreflenefs be 
ing no way inconvenient, but in our judgements very needfull 

6. Underftand that for the former part, the Profeffion of AflTent 
to the Fundamentals, we do make ufe of the common Creed called 1 
the Apoftles, as our ground and text and we fuperadde our own^ 
by way of Comment or Expofition. If any (hall charge us with ne 
ve Ity or contempt of Antiquity in making the Ancient inefficient, 
I (hall thus prove the chai ge to be unjuii:. i. We highly citeem An 
tiquity, and efpecially the ancient Creed : and we take it to be fuffi- 
cient to them that uriderftand what it implieth, as well as what it exr 
prefTeth : And therefore we continue it, and never defire .to lay it 
by : no nor one word of it do we alter ; not fo much as the quefti- 
oned word, of defcending into Hell. 2. Yet we fuppofe that a full 
Creed ihould exprefs the Fundamentals, and that all things necefTary 
to falvation are not expreffed in that ancient Creed. Implicitly the 
whole Profeffion is in thofe three words, Matth. 28. 20. Baf tiding 
them in-the Name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the holy Ghoft : 
Shall we therefore fay that no more (hould be exprefTed.? or accufe 
the ancient Creed for expreffing more ? 3. It is the Bible that we 
take for our prefent Rule, and we have fully proved both the Veri 
ty and Abfolute Neceffity of what we require,by clear Texts of Scri 
pture. And if the Creed contain not that which the Scripture make 
necefTary to Salvation, is it not as fafe to fay that the Creed hath too 
little, as that the Bible hath too much? Though for my part I will 
fay neither : becaufe that Creed might be fufficient for former times, 
when men underftood what was Implyed,as well as what was Expref 
fed : and may yet fuffice, on fuppofition that men be taught 
what it implies, and will profefs that Implyed Dodrine by it felf as 
an expofition. 4. You may as well accufe the Univerfall Church, as 
us,inthis. If they did not accufe the old Creed of Infufficiency, when 
the Council of Nice formed theirs, and the Council of Constantinople 
added to that, and when many other Councils have had their proper 
vConfeflions, as moft of the Reformed Churches alfo have had ; why 
, {hould we be thought more guilty in this then they ? Sure Athanafius 



thought as low of the fufficiency of the firft Creeps we do: And the 
Gouncill oi Trent thought it much more Infufficient, as their detefta- 
ble additions witnefs. 5. Underftand, that we are fo moderate in 
this point, and fo fenfible of the mifchief of enlarging our Creed be- 
vond the bounds of Scripture, that we will not break Communion 
with any (I fpeak for my felf and thofe whofe mindes I know ) who 
will take only the Apofties Creed, on thefe two Conditions : i. So 
they will add the following ProfeilionofCo/^/-, without which a 
bare AfTent will do little good-, feeing the Devils, faith fames, be- 
leeveand tremble. 2. So be it they make it appear that it is not to 
hide any Herefie, that they refufe our explicatory Profeffion ; and 
th at they -are not ignorant of thofe neceifary Truths which our Pro 
feiiion doth contain. 6. If any fay, We (hould have made ufe then 
of fome other of the ancient Creeds. I anfwer, We have made ufe 
only of the moft ancient and unqueftionable^not formed by theCoun- 
cill at Nice but by the Counfel of the Holy Ghoft, and delivered 
exprelfely in the Scriptures : not mixed with our conceits, but given . 
you in Gods exprefs words: 

7, The things that we thought fhould be fullier exprefled then in 
the ancient Creed, are thefe : i. A man may beleeve all expreffed 
in the ancient Creed, and yet. beleeve that there is a hundred Gods : 
For it exprefleth not God to be the Only God, yet doubtlefs this is 
implied. 2. That Creed may be profefled, and yet men deny Gods 
Infinitenefs, his Omnifcience, Goodnefs, Mercy, Juftice, Prefervatt- 
on, Government of all,^. yet doubtlefs thefe are all implied in the 
term [God.] 3 A man may beleeve all that is exprefled in the an 
cient Creed, .and yet deny, not only Original fin, but that ever man 
did fall from God and Happinefs,or ever ftood in need of a Redeemer, 
4, The ancient Creed telleth us not that Chrift is God, and therefore 
may be taJien by an Arian, 5. It tels us not that ever Chrift was 
the Redeemer of the world nor of any in it : nor that ever he died 
for fin. 6. No 5 nor that he died for us : It only telleth us that he 
was crucified, dead and buried ; but telleth us neither why, nor for 
whom, nor for what : yet-no doubt but it implieth all thefe things, 
which it expreffeth not. It telleth us -of beleeving the forgiveners of 
fins, but it telleth us not whether they are forgiven for Chriftsfake ? 
or with any refpecl to his facrifice as the caufe * yet no doubt it im 
plied this. 7. It doth not fo much as profefs that Chrift himfelf was 
without fin. g. It fo obfcurely mentianeth the Article of the Holy 
Ghoft, not expreffmg his Relation to us, or works for us^ Miracles 


( 20) 

(ft any Other, that from thence alone it cannot be known, what a fa 
ying faith in the holy Ghoft is. I will add no more : Only, were it 
not lor interrupting the unlearned R/eader, I would here recite many 
of the Ancient Fathers Creeds or Principles , that you might fee how 
we agree with them in the Point here added. One you may fee in 
Origsns Prolog, ante Ptriarch. Learned Parker ( or Saneford ) de Def- 
cenftt will dired you to more. One brief one I will venture to let 
down,becaufe it is fo ancient,and fo agreeable to the Scripture. Ter~ 
tulL de pr&fcript. cap.i$. ReguU eH autem Fides, ut jam hinc, quid 
credantM propteamur : ill A fcilicet qua creditor Q iJnum omnium.-* 
Deunt effe, nee alittm prater mundi conditorem qui univerfa do nihil* 
produxerity per ijerbum futtm primo omnium emi$nm. Id verbum^ 
J: ilium ejus Appellatum, in Nomine Dei varie vifum Patriarch^, in 
Propketis femper auditum, poflremo delatum ex fpiritu Dei Patriot ^ & 
Virtute^ in Virginem AfAriam^ car new fa&um in utero ejus, cr ex ea 
natum htminem, & effe feftent Cbriftum : Sxinde pr&dicaffe Novamj 
Legem & Novam Premijfionem Regni Ccelorum : Virtutesfeciffe : Fix- 
um Cruel: Tertia die Refurrexiffe : In Coelos crept umfedere addex- 
tram Patris : Afijtjfe Vicariam Vim Spirits Sanili qui credcntes a- 
gat : Venturum cum cbaritate ad fumendos fanclos in Vita aterna or 
fromiffionum coeleftiumftuttum & ad propbanos judicandos igni per- 
fetuo, fafta ntriufy partis Refufcitatione cum carnx Refurrettione.~\ 
Htzc Regula a Cbrtfto ut probabitur inflituta, nulla* babet afud KOS qu*- 
ftiones,niji qua* h<erefes inferunt,& qua bareticosfaciunt. 
Vide & Irtn&um l.i .c.4. & I.2.C.2. 

8. We thought it neceflary to reduce all the Fundamentals or Ar 
ticles of the Creed to three heads, z//^,. the Father, Son, holy Ghoft, 
and their Relations and Works. Becaufe Chrift himfelt in the Baptif- 
mall Inftitution comprifeth all in thefe three : Mat.2$. 19,20, And 
many Learned men think, that the Churches common Creed was 
no larger at firft ( as Parker de Defcenfu at large endeavours to 
prove.; and Lnd. Crocius Sjntag.&c.) or at leaft that thence it had 
its rife. 

9. Our greateft care of all hath been, to give you the Scripture 
fenfe in the Scripture phrafe .; that fo no good Chnftian may have 
any feeming caufe to fcruple the Profeifing it : and none might be 
able to deny it, without plain denying Gods own Word. The Ne- 
cefiity of fo doing is fo evident, and our Reafons againft departing 
from the letter of the Text, are fo many and obvious, that I will noc 
trouble you with them. I pray you perufe Learned D r Staughtow 



Form of Vohnlfonte Words, Serm.2. pag. 60, 61, 62. 

10. We did ic as a work of Neceftity, not prefuming of our fuffi- 
ciency fo far as to fay or think that we have done it perfectly : For 
we judge it a work fit for a Councill of the ableft men on earth, to 
do it as it (hould be done,*,, that there may be no word too little,or 
too much,or unfh,or out of order. 

-ii. We thought it meet to fubjoyn the full proo.f of every word 
from the Scripture, that it might be paft controverfie with all belie 
vers. Concerning the Texts cited I mult deilre you to obferve, that 
every Text doth not exprefs the very words that we have put down, 
but all exprefs the fenfe and famme of die words ; fo that I think 
fcarce two fyllables can be found that are not exprelly in the words of 
Scripture, which contain any matter that is liable to controverfie, 
If you finde ten Texts cited for one thing, if the words be not in nine 
of them, it is fufficient if they be in the tenth ; and therefore I muft 
intreat you, if you doubt, to perufe them all. And let not the number 
offend you : If you need them not,they are no trouble to you : Few 
of them,I think,or none, are impertinent : A concent of many Texts 
may convince more then one fingle Text : at leaft it will be ufefull to 
have fo many Texts at hand, for the convincing any others of any 
Article of the Faith, though you doubt not your felves. Only the 
particular Application of fome parts of the laft Branch, viz,. Q onr 
Confent that j itch a manjhall be onr Paft or, and that We will be Mem 
bers oftktf or that particular Church :] cannot be proved in termes 
from Scripture, but by confequence : For who can exped that Scri 
pture fhould name the perfon-s of our Paftors,or the places of our ha- 
bitation ? 

12. As for the fenfe of fome few of the termes that may pofiibly 
be mifunderitood, I (hall give you my own thoughts,but briefly pai- 
ling over all the reft. 

1 . In the firft Part, when we fubjoyn Q the Father ] to one onlj 
God ~] we do not exclude the Son and holy Ghoft : for we afterwards 
exprefs the contrary. But we fpeak i. In the language of the Scri 
pture, as the Texts cited will inform you. 2. And in the ordinary 
language of Divines, who therefore call the Father Fundament HHL* 

2. In mentioning Gods Being (which we put firft) and his Prima 
ry Attributes, we apply the word ^Infiniti^iQ them all. And by the 
Infinitenefs ot his Being,we mean his Eternity and Immcnfuy : (That 
he is not a Body but a Spirit, not vifible, palpable,^. as bodies are, 

G we 


we imply or rather exprefs in the very rermeQc?^.]) By his Infinite 
Wifdome, we mean his perfect Knowledge of himfelf and all things 
intelligibie,paft,prefent or to come ; their caufes, minriers,ends, cit- 
curnftanceSjCT-r. and how all things Giould be ordered and difpofed 
of for the beft. By his Infinite Goodnefs, we mean all the perfection 
of his Hoiinefs,Inclination(if I may fo fpeak)to do Good to his Crea 
tures, and in a word, whatsoever it is in G*od which we may conceive 
of in Analogic to Moral! Virtues in man, which lye in the perfection 
ef his Will (as by Infinkenefs of his Wifdome we mean all his Intel- 
leftuall perfeftions.) By the Infinite Power of God, we mean his 
Omnipotency, and all the perfection of that in God, whixrh bears 
Analogic with the Executive Virtue in man. For as m defcribing 
the perfections of man, we muft firft exprefs his Being as the Founda 
tion, and then reduce all his Principall Virtues to the Perfections of 
his Intellect, Will and Executive Power ; fo muft we be forced for 
our weak apprehenfions, to do by the Incomprehensible God, while 
we can know him but in this Glals. Next we thought meet to men 
tion his Principal! Works,and Relations thereupon : i. As to all the 
Creatures : of whom he is i . The Maker, 2. Preferver, 3 .Difpofer : . 
2. As to the Rationall Creature in particular : of whom he is the 
Lord : which terme we ufe in the Scripture fcnfe as it comprehen- 
deth both his Abfolute Propriety in us, and his Abfolute Soveraign 
Reftorftiip over us all : To which Relations of his it is that his per 
fect Juftice is to be fubjoyned, and his Mercy as to the moft eminent 
cxercife of it. God muft be confidered as Rector, before he is confi- 
dered as a moft Juft and Mercifull Rector. 

3 . In the fecond Part, We thought meet firft to exprefs the Difeafe 
and then the Remedy. The firft lay in Sin the Caufe, and its effects ; 
which as to our lofs is, in falling from God and Happinefs ( our true 
God -.) and the ft ate to which we fell is that threefold mifery, Gods 
wrath, the Curfe of the Law, and the Power of Satan. Though God 
hath not wrath as man hath, yet there is fome Caufe of our fufferings 
in God, which man can have no fitter conceiving or expreffion of, 
then under the notion of wrath : and therefore we muft do as Scri 
pture doth,in diflir.guifhing between Gods wrath and the effects of ir, 
and not make them all one. When we fay, Man is fallen under the 
power of the Devill, we include,the Power of Sin, and the Fiefh,and 
the World : for thefe are but Satans materials, baits or inftruments. 
A double Power of Satan we mean : both as he is the Caufe of Sin, 
as he is the Caufe of punifhment, and therefore is faid to have 


the Power of Death, #^.2.14. ^. The Remedie of this malady we 
have defcribed in its feverall Cauies and parts, which I will leave to 
your obfervation. By the word \_wda\neA~~\ we have no refped to 
Eternal Decrees dc rerum event H : but to Chrills Legiflation, which is 
in order to be placed before Judgement and its execution, which are 
next fubjoined.So did the Church in Tertullians dayes, as you may fee 
by his \_Pr&dicaffe ncvam Legem->.~^ 

In the third Part, we thought it meet to be larger on the Belief of 
the holy Ghoft,rhen other Creeds are. For doubtiefs as it is not only 
the e {fence and perfon of the Father and the Son that are to be Belie 
ved ; bu-t alfo the Relation and works of the Father as Creator, and 
of the Son as Redeemer ; fo is it the Relation and works of the holy 
Ghoft alfo that muft be Believed to Salvation. And if the fin againil 
the holy Ghoft be fo defperate, doubtiefs Belief in the holy Ghoft is 
as necefiary. And indeed I fear moft Chriftians do not underftand or 
confider well this part of their Creed, what it is to believe in the holy 
Ghoft. I think the ancient Creed which I cited from Tertullian ex- 
preffeth it excellently Q Afififft Vicariam vim Spiritw Santti qui cre- 
dentes agat.~\ Its like God would have kept the my ftery of the Trini 
ty unknown to us, and never have made it the objed of our faith , if 
the feverall perfons had not ftood in thofe Relations to us, and done 
thofe works for us, that muft needs be known. I think Tertullians 
termes are an exaft interpretation of the work ^Paraclete ,] t is cal 
led Vim Vicariam, becaufe Chrift being perfonally in Heaven, hath 
fent the holy Ghoft to do the reft of his work on earth, and carry on 
his Caufc, and maintain his Intereft till he return, againft the world, 
fielh and Devil, which is to be Chrifts Advocate, or properly his 
AgemQgw Credentes Agat:~}piii& that is two wayes,tbat he Aduateth 
Believers : i . Extraordinarily ; by Infpiring the Prophets and Apo* 
ftles, and caufing them to work Miracles and fpeak with tongues,o?r. 
And doubtiefs this is a moft princrpall part of our Belief in the holy 
Ghoft ; viz,. To Beiieve,that the Spirit which fpake by the Apoftles, 
and by which Believers did fpeak with tongues and work Miracles, 
was the very Spirit of God, even the holy Ghoft, and not an evil de 
ceiving Spirit, ( which they that affirm blafpheme the holy Ghoft :) 
and confequently that the many glorious works and gifts of this Spi 
rit, are an infallible feal to the Truth of the Teftimony and Doctrine 
of Chrift. For you muft note the order of each part of our Creed. 
The Father is to be Believed in as thefirftCaufe and End of man; 
and as his Happinefs. The Son is to be Believed in as the only way to 

G z the 


the Father, to Recover man to his favour and to the Happinefs wfcich 
he loft. The holy Ghoft is to be Believed in as the eminent Principal! 
way to the Son, by infpiring the Prophets to foretell him, but fpeci- 
ally by the wonderfull Gifts and frequent evident uncontrolcd Mira 
cles which were wrought by the Difciples ; and alfo by animating 
and fanftifying his people : This is Ghrifts laft and great witnefs 
which muft convince the world, or elfe they (hall have no greater to 
convince them. 2. And the holy Ghoft muft alfo be believed in, in 
regard of his more ordinary QAduating of Believers and that i s,as 
our Guide, Illuminator, Sandifier and A/lifter againft our fpiritual 
enemies in our Conflicts, and Comforter in our diftrefTes. 

In mentioning the Spirits indwelling and working ( which becaufe 
they are more undoubted Scripture terms, we put in Head tfTertxl-* 
Hans [_xi crcdentes a?at~\ ) we make Believers the fubjed : Becaufe 
though faith it felf be the gift of God, yet there is" fo much greater 
and more eminent grace given after faith, and on condition oi belie 
ving, then the Grace is which enableth us to believe, thac it is only 
the giving of that greater meafure (and extraordinary Gifts) which- 
in the New Teftament is ufually called the Giving of the Spirit : For 
(as M r Th. Hoolter arid others exprefs it) the Spirit in working Faith 
doth but, as it were, make his way into the foul, and then dwellech 
and worketh there afterwards as ( faith he ) fome Birds frrft make 
their way into a hard tree by flocking a hole in it, and afterward 
make their neft s and lay their yowng there. Here note well, that we 
thought meet before we exprefled the particular works of the Spirit 
in Believers, to mention frrft the relative change of their ftares,which 
in order goeth between their believing,, and their further fandifica- 
tion : Tiiefe we have expreffed in four terms. The firft in order is 
our conjundion to Chrift as our Head, called by Divines, our Union 
with him. The fecond is our Memberfhip in the univerfal Church 
which is his body. The third is our Pardon or Juftification. The 
fourth is our- Adoption: Where note i. That we call not thefe 
[jthe Works of the Spirit] but put them in as* in a Parentheils, be 
tween our believing and rhe works of the indwelling Spirit. 2. Yet 
we choofe rather to put them in this part of our Profeilion then the 
former, becaufe as no man hath right to thefe benefits but through 
Faith, fo though they are not the efifeds of that Faith (which the 
Spirit worketh ) yet are they confequents of it by vertue of Chrifts 
Promife or New Law ; and though taith be not the caufe of them in 
ttridr ienfe, yet it is the condicion of our Right intheiti. And there 
fore ~ 


fore they feem here to be placed, as Divines commonly do, between 
Faith and Sandification. 

Note alfo that by being [Tandified to Chrift as a peculiar people] 
we intend firft the real change, commonly called Sandification and 
alfo the Relation that thence follows, of being a feparated, fandified, 
dedicated, peculiar people. And we rake falsification, not for that 
firft work commonly called Vocation, whereby Faith and Repen 
tance are firft wrought ; but as the Scripture takes it for the follow 
ing effed of the Spirit dwelling in us. How the Spirit dwels or work- 
ethinus, we prefumenotto define. Further note that we defcribe 
the exercife of this fandification : i . In refped to the (late from Which 
we are changed, where we judged it neceffary to imitate the Church, 
which hath alwaies in Baptilm required a renouncing of the world, 
flefh and devil ; and therefore ( Scripture making it necefTary to fal- 
vation) wethmkitrequifite that this be in our Creed : Alfo we ra 
ther put in [^Mortifying the fieiri, and overcoming the world and the 
devil ]] then meeerly ftriving agamft i hem, both becauie the firft is 
the common Scripture language, and btcaitfe it is not a-!} driving, But 
that which ends in overcoming that is fa ving. 2. As for the it ate to 
Which fandification brings us, we thought meet i . To put down the 
manner and nature of the inclination it felf, in the Apofties words 
faffkloM ofgiod Workf^ left any ihould think than the^externall work- 
is all. And for the exercife of it, we diftribute it according to th e 
Decalogue: i. Into ferviiig God in holinefs, which hath chief re*- - 
fped to the firft Table. 2. And in righteoufnefs, by which we fpe-* 
cially mean the duties of the fecond Table. 3 . \ et we thought it ne"-- 
ceffary to adde [the fpecial love of the Saints ^ and communion- with 
them, and the hope of Chrifts coming and E verlafting LifeJ-not a f s : 
if we thought the Decalogue extended nottothefe- but becaufe- 
Chrift in the Gofpel hath in a flngular and eminent fore required 
them, and made them duties fo fpecially Evangchcal, and 1 necefTary- 
in particular : and the ancient Creed had Qthe Comimimon of Saints J, 
which .therefore, we ought not to leave out. 

Note alfo, that though Faith, Love and Ofeedietlcfe be menrhhied- 
both in the fecond part-ancthi the third, yet it" IF no vain repetition-:" 
For in the fecond part they are mentroned, as they apperraurtc- 
Ghrifts Legiflation and Judgement, and are required of maniij-or-- 
derto his happinefs : -but ia the thirds-part they arc" nieilcioned- as 
adually conferred by the holy Ghoft. So EverlciftifigLii-e-is rfiinti- - 
onedin the.firft partis given (qvo^ljw) by the 


v which Chrift will adjudge us to : But in die third part it is mentioned 
as the objed: of Chriftian Hope. 

Concerning the Profeflion of Confent, note i. It was necefTary 
that we repeat the fame things which were before cxp reded in the 
JProfeflion of AfTent,becaufe it is (inoftly) the fame things which the 
Undemanding receives as true ( together with the truth pf enuncia 
tions concerning them ) and which the Will receives as Good. 2. I 
take the Truth and Authority and sufficiency of Scripture, to be 
plainly included in the Article of our Believing in the holy Ghoft 
(aslhavefaid) and therefore we may well require that it be con- 
lented to. 

Laftiy, Underftand alfo that when you promife r.o God, to take 
his Word and Law as your Rule, you fhew hereby, that this Law 
muft be ftudied that you may underftand it : For how can it be the 
Rule of your Faith and Life which you underftand not, nor meditate 
on, that you may underftand it ? Pfal.i.2^. And therefore yoa 
may fee, that it is not enough to learn this Creed or Profefllon, but 
you muft ftudy the Bible,whence this is taken. 

Efpecially remember that it is here fuppofed that you underftand 
the ten Commandements, which (hew you what is your duty, and 
alfo the great Commands of the Gofpel, for Faith, Repentance, for 
giving wrongs, loving the brethren, and loving enemies,^, which 
Chrift hath eminently fet his fignature on. Ail this is implied alfo, 
in your Promife of fincere Obedience. Alfo the duties of hearing the 
<}ofpel preached, of inftruding your families, Dettt.6.6. of conftant 
and fervent Prayer, of theufe of the Lords Supper, c^r. are here 
implied : Thofe that promife Obedience,and yet live ungodly, with 
untaught, ungoverned prayerlefs families, and in the negled of 
known duties, do but aggravate their fins by the addition of Promife-. 
breaking. It is therefore very necejfary that the Creed or ProfeJJion of 
faith, the ten Commandements, and the Lords Prayer ( Vthich K the Di- 
rettoryfor Prayer ) he learned ef all men : and ic is neceflary that they 
underftand the Dodrine of the Sacraments. 

As for the laft ( our Confent to particular Minifters and Church- 
memberfhip,) we have given you thofe Scriptures from whence you 
may fee it proved, that fuch a Confent there muft be ; though the 
particular places and perfons ( as is faid before ) are not there na 
med, nor will any wife man exped: they (hould. 

TO conclude ; I will tell you in a word more, what ufe we intend 
o make of this Profeflion. i . When any Infants are to be baptized, 


1 (hall expeft that the Parents do both profefs their own faith (of 
Aflfent and Confent ) that we may fee they are fuch whofe Children 
have right to that Priviledge ; and that they engage their Children 
into the fame: and therefore I (hall, repeat to them theApoftles 
Creed, with our annexed Profeffion of Confent,. omitting our ex 
plicatory Profefiion of Affent, as implied in the old Creed ( becaufe 
we would in Baptifme be as contracted as may well be.) 2. When 
any Perfon doth fignifie his defire to pafs out of the Number of In 
fant-members, into the ftate and number of Adult-members, I (hall 
require of them an open Profeffion of the whole (both of the old 
Creed, and our larger Scripture Profefiion.) 3 . At the iirft Refor 
ming (now) of our prefent Congregations, 1 (hall defire all to 
Protefs the whole,, and endeavour co iee that they competently un-- 
derftand the fenfe of thofe words which they fpeak. I will not affirm 
every word in this Profeffion to be of abfolute Neceffity to Salvation. 
But I will fay this, that I know not many (if any) Doftrines in it,, 
which I dare fay a man may deny,and yet be faved ( among our ordi 
nary hearers.) And we thought ic far fafer to put in a word more 
then is of tf/0/#/"? Neceffity ( feeing even that may be yet of inferior 
neceffity,) then to leave out one word,which may prove of fuch Ne-~ 
ceffity ;, and fo mens falvation may be hazarded, by the not receiving 
it. Yet where it is clear that any word was not of abfolute Neceffity, 
we were very ftudious of omitting it, defiring much in a Creed all 
poffible brevity, that may not hazard mens fouls. 4. Underfland 
that for our Profeffion of particular Church-memberfhip, and fub- 
miffion to our Guides,we intend never to offer it to our People, but 
this one time ( without feme neceffity which we do not forefee 5 ). it 
being not matter to be fo oft made ufe of : But the Profeffion of our 
Faith for AfTent and Confent, we (hall frequently make ufe of, as is 
expreffed. So much for Explication. 

objections Anfoered. 

BEfides what is faid that way in the foregoing Explication of our 
Agreement, I (hall briefly answer fuch Objections,- as the feve- 
rall differing parties may raiie againft our courfe^and their j 
with us u 


v i. Some there are (of what party I know not, except of the 
.Worlds as oppofed to Chrifts) thatrefolve they will make no alte 
rations, nor exercife any Difcipline till they fee what the Parliament 
will eftablifh : I think tor fear of being engaged againft what they 
may eftabliih. And fo if the Parliament will never eftablifh Difct- 
.pline, they will have none at all. If thefe men pray for thedifcovery 
of the right way of Difcipline, it muft be but as a Gentleman that I 
have heard of in .the Warres, prayed every day that God wojild 
open his eyes to fhew him which fide would get the better, and that 
he would take for the better fide. I confefc I take not thefe men to 
be fit for our AfTbciation, and therefore will not argue the cafe with 
them, but leave them to the Parliament for their reward, feeing the 
Parliament is efteemed as their chief Lord and Matter. If the Parlia 
ments Licenfe or Toleration may ferve all dividers for the executing 
of their defignes againit the Unity and Peace of the Church, and for 
fetting up ot falfe waies, and yet will not ferve thefe men ( without 
a command) for Uniting and Reforming : It feems others are fafter 
frierids jto Satan and Herefie, then they are to Chrift and Verity. 

2. Others ( of the fame neft ) think that it is in vain to attempt 
any thing without the Authority of the Magiftrate, for people will 
but defpife us, What will they care for our avoiding them ? or who 
will avoid them at our perfwafions ? It will be but inane fulmen, if 
the power of the Sword do not both prepare refpeft to it, and alfo 
fecond it. 

I take thefe men ajfo to be not only unworthy an anfwer, but un 
worthy to be Minifters of the Gofpel who have fo bafe an efteem 
jof the Gofpel, and the power which they have received ; and dare 
.think that it is fuch a leaden or wooden Sword which Chrift hath put 
into their hands ; when both the Scriptures which they preach, and 
the Churches experience might have taught them that thefe fpirituai 
weapons are powerfull and mighty ? or if they prove at any time in- 
erTe^uall, let them fufped the ill managing of them. For ought I 
know thefe men might as well on their own grounds give over 
Preaching, till the Magiftrate will force men to Pray, Meditate, Be 
lieve, Repent, and do every duty that they perfwade men to (were 
it not for a more eflfeftuall argument called Lticrum,) What did the 
poor Church do for fo many hundred years, when Magiftrates were 
againft them ? and yet Difcipline was acted in fuch rigour, as would 
not now be endured to be once attempted ? Hath Chrift given you 
the Keyes of the Kingdom of Heaven, and cannot youufe them 


without the arm of Magiftcrial Authority? IdeiireGod to change 
your mindes, or elfe to rid the Church of you and all fuch, and put 
his Keyes into fuch hands as can ufe them ; and to give his people 
fuchpaftors, as take Chrifts Authority to be valid for enabling them 
to their work, and do not make the Magiftrates their God. Though 
yet I (hall as freely acknowledge the ufefulnefs of the Magiftrates 
power in feconding Chrifts commands, as another; and doubt not 
but it is a very eafie task to rnanifeft the finrulneis of their neglod: 

3. Others Objed, that we (halibut difturb and difcompofe our 
people, and occafion many to hold off from joyning with us, and 
others to feparate when they finde themfelves touched by our clo- 
fer proceedings : and is it not better to let them go on in peace as 
they do ? i Jt 

Anf. i. When the ftroflg man armed keeps the houfe, the things 
that he poffefleth are in peace. Satan maintains his intereft in Seuls, 
and States and Churches, moft effedUally, when he can ftablifhic 
in peace. Moft finners are quiet in the ftate of fin, if you would let 
them alone and not difturb them. The houfe that s fallen down, lieth 
{till; and will you not re-edifte it for fear of ftirring it ? 2. Are our 
Congregations in a ftate to be refted in, or no > That is the Queftion 
to be determined. And I prove that they are not: i. Our people 
live in the conftant pradice of apparent fin, by having and holding 
Communion with thofe, whofe Communion the Scripture command- 
eth them to avoid. 2. This is become a Church-fin, which is more 
hainous and dangerous then private and perfonall fins. 3 . Minifters 
live in conftant apparent fin, not only in continuing the fame Com 
munion, but in neglecting of a great part of their duty ; never once 
acquainting the vileft whoremafter, drunkard, or other evil doer, of 
his duty to forbear Church-communion, and his danger in ufurping 
it ( I mean perfonally, that he may apply it ; ) or never acquainting 
the Churih with their duty to avoid all familiarity and communion 
with that man, nor once requiring them to do it. 4. Hereby mul- 
tftudes of evil doers are.not only encouraged or hardened in finning, 
but alfo deluded to think their ftate good enough for falvation, as 
long as they are admitted into Chriltian communion, or taken for 
Members of the Church. 5. Hereby all the great neceflary duties 
of private and open Reproof and Admonition are neglcded alfo by 
our people : For when they fee. that they cannot proceed in it t@ tell 
the Church, that he may be admonilhed by die Paftors, they think it 

H almoft 


almofi as good fay nothing ; and fo men do not plainly rebuke their 
neighbours, but furler fin to lie upon them. 6. Alfo hereby the 
Lords Supper is abufed, and Receiver and Giver made guilty, -and 
judgements drawn down on die Church. 7. Hereby God is provo 
ked to eftrange hirnfeif from our Aflembhes, and lefs to own our 
Prayers, Praifes, Sacraments, &c. ?nd to withdraw his grace, I do 
not fay that this guilt lies on Church or Minifter for die pretence of a 
wicked man at the Sacrament, when we have discharged our duty, 
to prevent or hinder it For it is not bare prefence that makes Com 
munion : In a moral fenfeit is no Communion, if wedifclaiin and 
difown the perfon, though he fit among us ; for this breaks familia 
rity as well as local! removal!. If I be conftrained to eat private 
ly, with a drunkard (either through neceility of hunger, or others 
violence, &c.) I break not Pauls precept -[withfucha one -no not to 
fat,^\{ I do but declare that I renounce communion or familiarity 
with him. But when we do not our duty the cafe is otherwife. 
8. Hereby many Minifters ( that do keep them from the Lords Sup 
per, and do no more ) do give occailon to the enemies of the Mini- 
ftrytofay we deal ielf-contradidingry ; to deny the Sacrament to 
thofe whom we take for Church-members, or fuffer to continue 
Church-members year after year ; and to whom we grant all other 
priviledges of Communion : Whenas we are as much bound to avoid 
all private familiarity with them, and to require the Church to do the 
like. 9. Hereby we do hainoufly reproach and difhononr the Chri- 
ftian profeflion, by fuffering obftinate rebels to go under the name 
of Chriftians and Church-members. 10. Hereby weoccafion the 
infection of our flocks, and the mcreafe of wickednefs, by keeping 
up the credit of the wicked, or keeping them from that difcredit which 
Chrift would havethem undergo : and by fuffering good and bad to 
have equal familiarity, converfe and fociety; and fo a little leaven 
may leaven the whole lump. n. Hereby we hinder the recovery 
fthe wicked, . which by Chrifts means of fhaming them might be 
furthered. 12. Laitly, Hereby we caufe not only our Churches to 
fee reproached, as having in them coriftant drunkards, whoremon 
gers, railers,^r. (nay we know not well, who is a member and who 
not ) but alfo multitudes of tender well-meaning Chriftians to fepa- 
rate from them, as^common finks of all pollution. It u becavje We 
Will net make that -meet and necep.ary feparation, Which Chrift reqtiireth 
and authoritatively at Guides of the Church, that fo many do 
irregtfldrfinftiiifeparatwns. The great fault is in us, andwe do 


biut condemn our felves in crying out againft Separatift^as long as we 
contmue,che occafion by our negled:. 

Thus 1 have briefly given youfomeofmy reafons, for a necefijcy 
of further Difcipiine, and why we may not content our felves witn 
that ftate that our Churches are now in no though we do keep open 
ungodly ones frem the Lords Supper. (I fpeak not of thofe Churches 
thac are well ordered, and know their memberSj and exercife Difci- 

More particularly, i. Some Brethren of theClaflicall way may 
pofTibiy Objed, that joyning with us in this way, may feem to iig- 
n.ifie a diflike of the Refoiutions of the Aflembiy, or a Confent to 
the undoing of what they have done. Anf. There is no ground for 
this frruple : For we do not difclaim or condemn the judgement or 
way of any party, by taking up at prefent with what ail are agreed 
in. A prefent forbearance of the ufe of full Clafficall Government, 
is no rejecting it. We did in this County feek for Authority from the 
Parliament many years ago, for the eftabliftiing of the Presbyterian 
Government ; ; and all our endeavours were rruftrate. And many 
Brethren that make this Objection, do Preach themfelves withouC 
die exercife of the Presbyterian Government. For becaufe they live 
not in London, Laneafiire, Shro$Jkire> where that Government was 
authorized by Parliament,therefore they will not ufe it : And fo fome 
of them for many years have forborn all adminittration of the Lords 
Supper, and others adminiiler it without any exereife of Difcipiine : 
And may not we as lawfully exercife fo much as all are agreed in, - as 
they may forbear all ? 

Obj> But why may not you as well fet up the Clafficall Govern 
ment pun dually, as do what you do ? Anf. We are not all of one 
tninde ; and thofe of us that are for the Clafficall Government, do 
not think tliofe parts of it which we here omit and forbear, to be of 
fo great necelfity or moment, as for the prefent ufe of it, to disjoyn 
and divide from all our Brethren of a different Judgement. We take 
our felves bound to do rtiuch for the Unity and Peace of the Church 
es ; Befides, being many of us at a Icfle in feveral controverted 
Points of Difcipiine, we think the Amicable Union and AfTociation 
of Brethren, where all things may be frequently and plainly debated, 
will be the likelieft way to iatisfie and reftifie us in thofe controver 
ted Points. In the mean time, you may joyn with us in going fo far 
as we can go Unanimoufly, without disclaiming, yea or forbearing 

H 2 your 


your own way. For I think the conftant exercife of the Presbyterian 
Government may well confift with our Propositions and Aflocia- 
tions : part of it being indeed above, but not contrary to our Agree- 
ment,and therefore may be done by thofe that will overg us,withut 
dividing from us. 

As for the Objection about the Necefiky of Ordaining Elders, it is 
anfwered before. 

And whereas it may be Objeded, that we do allow a fingle Mini- 
fter to name offenders, and to charge it on the peoples confciences 
to avoid Communion with shem, which only a Presbytery is autho 
rized to do, I anfwer, i .We defire each Church may have a Presby 
tery ,and then we are agreed. 2 . The Brethren of the Clafiicall Way 
do allow a fingle Paftor to pronounce the fentence of Excommuni 
cation it felf, ib be it he have the advice and confent of a Presbytery. 
And to avoid all pofiibility of breach upon this ground, we have a- 
greed to take the advice of the Aflbciation of Minifters, before we 
require the people to avoid Communion with any. Only we refolve 
not to do this all on the fame reafons and principles : One may think 
kofflatneceffity in a Regimental! way: Another may think it of 
neceflity in a way of Union : Another may think it convenient to 
avoid mifcarriages and rafti cenfures in fo weighty a cafe : Another 
may think it fit to be yielded to, for Peace with ^thofe Brethren that 
judge it neceflary, feeing it is unqueftionably lawfull to take advice 
in cafes of fuch weight. And why muft we needs agree in our Rea- 
(bns, as long as we agree in our practice ? 3 . It is only a Preaching 
power that we exereife, applying Chrifts dodrine to particular per- 
lons and cafes : fuppofing the evidence of the fad and guilt to be be- 
yound queftion, we do but apply the word to the perfon hereupon. 
The Word faith that with fuch we muft not eat, we muft not bid them 
Good fpeed,we muft turn away from them,^.] Now I have neigh 
bours that go mad-drunk about the ftreets fometime once a week,, 
fometime once in three daies, fometime but once a fortnight ; Where 
hath God made it the prerogative of a Presbytery to name this man 
openly ? or to fay,With fuch a man you muft not eat ? ] Or if I have 
a neighbour that would openly perfwade others that Scripture is a 
fable and no Word of God ; Why may not I fay, QBid him not good 
fpeed.] Have not Paftors a charge of particular ibuls, but only of 
people in general ? Is not the Old Teftament and New full of exam- 
ples.to warrant us in this ? Take heed of crying down duty, under 
pretence of queftioning Authority.. If a Tingle Paftor ( that harh no 



Presbytery ) (hall all his time neglect the perfonal, publiqne reproof 
of fuch men, or warning the Church to avoid them, Dare you war 
rant him and anfwer for him at Gods barre ? and for all the wrong 
that the Church may Main by his negleft > If publique naming men 
be a Claflicall presbyteria), or Epifcopal prerogative, then it will be 
asunlawfullfor me to makefo clofe an application, as toflote out 
the perfon without naming him ; for the cafe is all one. And then I 
may not anfwer a Separatift that will publiquely contradict my do-- 
#rine : or that will ftep up and Preach lies in my Congregation ; be- 
eaufe 1 cannot anfwer or reprehend him, without naming him, or 
perfonally applying my fpeeches to him. And then it feems a Mini 
fter may not put or the Pulpit name or defcribe any particular offen 
ders openly, cither in the Church or e Ife where : For the Pulpit 
makes not the difference ( nor have we agreed there to do it.) What 
a deal of unfcriptural invention is here ? tending to the overthrow 
of all Mixiifterial power and duty. For if you will prove that one 
man may not name or particularize a Tinner in reproof in pubiique, I 
will prove by the fame reafon that he may not as a Minifter do it left 
publiquely before any witnefles ; nor yet may perfwade fuch parti 
cular perfons to believe in Jefus Chrift - which 7W durft do to a 
Fe lix or Agrifta. 

Obj. But the offended Brother is bid ^TelltheCburcli^ and not 
Telia particular Minifter.. And it is the church that he is to hear. 
Anf. And dare you fay, he muft not hear a particular Minifter ? Sup- 
pofe it were granted you, that one Minifter cannot be a Reprefenta- 
tive Church ( as yoa interpret this Text ) nor yet that it is the Con 
gregation that is here meant ; Doth it follow that becaufe ultimatly 
the offended perfon muft tell the Presbytery or Clailis, that there 
fore he muft not tell a fingle Paftor > or yet that a fmgle Paftor muft 
not without fuch telling, take notice of open abominations in tl?e 
ftreets, nor perfonaily reprove men ? Thruit nothing on the Church 
without Scripture. It feems I may not go into the ftreets to reprove 
a railer, or part a fray,, or reprehend the breakers of the Lords day, 
becaufe it is a Clafiical or Epifcopal prerogative to name men openly. 
Whether Lot offended in rebuking the Sodimites, will then be a hard 
queftion : For its like there was a greater Affembly then we have 
ordinarily at Worfhip : And if a Paftor may no* do ir^much lefs may 
any private man do it : and fo farewell all brotherly openadmonin- 
on, by any but a Claflis or Bifhop. 

ubj. But, at leaft, one man may not fir in Judgernenr.uor examine 

H 3 rbe 


she evidence of the fad: whenit is 4oubtfuiL , Anf.i. APaftor muft 
endeavour to know the ftate of every particular foul in Ins charge, 
arid therefore ufe all fit means to fin-de oat all fcandalous fins. Miy 
not he go to, or fend for one of his people, and ask him whether fuch 
things be fo or not ? or ask others whether they know ic ? What is 
that Queftbn which a Claffis or Biftiop may put, and a Paftor may 
not ? 2. But for adminiftring Oa-thes w meddle not with it. 3 .And 
where the cafe is .doubtful.!, wedifclaim all . Determinations or Cen- 
fures: Thofe we leave as others .prerogative, confe/ling it belongs 
not to us. I do not think thatfo high a penalty as exclufion frem, 
Church-Communion, muft pafle upon dark and doubtrull Evi 

Let me add this much of my own private Opinion (wherein aUmy 
Brethren here agree not with me,) I confejfs I take it for a very clear 
truth, that one iingie Paftor may not only do what we have agreed 
in, but may properly Excommunicate, and may Govern a Church, 
where there is no other Governour of that Church with him : Nay 
more then that,; I chink he may and muft,dp all that we agree in ( in 
this point ) though there were a Presbytery in that Church, and the 
major Vote were againft him. I would willingly give you my rea- 
fons for the fe AfTertions; but only for fear left you fhould think 
by my reafoning for them, that thefe were any part of our Agree 
ment, or that our Proportions had any necefTary dependanee on 

I will fay no more to any Ob je&ions that may poflibly be made 
by my Brethren of* the Claffkal way, becaufe I finde by experience 
it is needlefs ( if others be as thofe with us,) For they are the for- 
wardeft men to our Union and AlTociation, of any others ( here.) 
The Lord grant the like fpint of Unity and Condefcenfion in other 


As for the Ob jedions that may be made by our Brethren of the 
Congregational way, I (hall but touch them briefly. 

i. S.ome may Obj ed:, that tying our felves to the obfervation of 
Parifh bounds, and one Muiifter not to receive Members from ano- 
thers Congregations, doth hinder the free gathering of Churches,and 
may force a man to fubmit to a weak Muiifter, when he might have a 

Anf. i. Brethren! Would you have Unity and Peace or no? If 
you would, muii not you condescend as far as may be to others, as 



Well a$ ettvcrs to you? Let ft be the property of the Pope to accqk 
ef no "Peace with any Church that will not wholly tome up to his will 
and way. An<l you know that this >s die-great point which you mtrft 
yield in, or you cannot have Union with the contrary minded, 
2. Did you ever reade in Scripture that chafe were Members of a 
Church kfone City, who lived -conftantiy in another City that -had i 
Chnrch ? Shew me-where ? yea or -that ever any were MembeiAs of 
one Church, that lived aineng4>e> : Members of another thurch r ^ 
Shew me that if you caril 3. Doth not Church AiToeiation and du 
ty neceffarily prefuppofe a habitation > Is not natural capacity pre- 
requifite to all duues-or enjoyments ? Can men in the Countrey thac 
live tn oneParifb, do thfc offices and enjoy the benefits of Members 
many miles from" -them, beyond their capacity?- 4. Is it : no rHttliat 
bounds for order and divifton fhould be let > And may nor the -Ma-- 
giftrate do it ? And is it not done in moil places, as well as you caff 
defire? And where it is not, but Parifhes are either too great or too 
final!, get them amended as fooft as you can.- In the mean nme, af 
fect not confufion : turn not all orders pfjde down : -God is noc the 
Godof confuiion, but of order, vvhich he would have eft-abl iflied in 
all the Churches. 5 . In the mean time, I pray you obferve,tliat you 
may joyn widi us in this without contradicting or deferting your own 
principles. For if there be fit perfons enough in each Partfh .to com^ 
pole a Church, and they be willing to keep to the ancient Bounds;, 
will you not confefs it lawfull? Yea very frt> :l : know you will. If 
there be not enough in one Pariih, we have agreed to lay two toge= 
ther; but by conient, and upon advice firit had with the Affociati- 
on, and not too privately, left it be rafhly and unadvifedly. And can- 
you difallow this ? And it any particular perfons living in one Pariih 
would be Members or the Church in another, we have agreed to ex 
amine the cafe : i . If that Parifh that he lives in, have no Mtniftei-^ 
o/r one as bad as none, or the perfon produce a j uft caufe dt ; his de- 
fire, we agree to admit him. 2. If the perfon have no futricient 
caule, ^etby conient of the Mim ftersof both Churches, we deny 
not but fuch a cafe may be dilpenfed with (as if a man fay, Itan pro- 
fit more by a neighbour-Minifter.) 3, But it he have no juft cauCr ? - 
and they both confent not, we may well refolve to forbear and reiitfe 
him. For i. Mmillers are Free-men as well as the people, arid- 
therefore every mans defire mi; ft not deprive them of their freedom^ , 
and necefiitate their yielding to it. 2. In fuch a cafe ho viokiV;eis- 
offered to theireed-orn of a B-rother, 3 . The rmbliqqe well t^re and 


Unity of the Churches, is to be preferred before the pleafing, yea or 
edifying of any fingie Member. What confufion will follow the 
plucking up of Chrifts and the Magtftrates and the Churches bounds ? 
4. Much more muft the temporal! commodity of (Ingle men, give 
place to the Churches welfare ( which will not ftand with diforder.) 
Should not luch remove their dwellings into thofe bounds where 
they would be Church-members? If you plead inconveniencies to 
them : Remember then it is no matter of Confdence, but of worldly 
commodity ; And may not I fet the generall good of the Churches 
againft any mans commodity ? 5. If aft the people may lawfully joyn 
themfelves with that Church which hath the Ableft Teacher, then 
almoft all the world muft go to a few men, and leave the reft. Then 
Barnabas may be forlaken, if Paul be the chief Speaker. 6. And 
then Able mens Churches will grow to that bignefs, that they will be 
no Churches, the Matter being too big for the End and Form. I 
would know this of you, May not you agree on a way to keep your 
own Churches from fwelling too big? no doubt: and muft too.- 
fome then muft be kept out. And may non you as honeftly and or 
derly refolve to keep out Members of another Parifh, that are fitter 
by habitation to be Members of another Church, then to keep out 
the fit Members of your own Parifh, that live among you ? 7. If 
you may (as you do) agree among your felves not to receive the 
Members of another Church that unwarrantably forfake their Paftor, 
without his confent; and this without any reference to Parifh- 
bounds ; why may you not better refolve on the fame courfe with 
reference to Parifh-bounds,where you have two reafons. The parties 
reafons for removall we fuppofe the fame in both (as that he can bet 
ter profii by another, ere-.) 8-Yea if at prefent there be no reafon to 
fear the over-greatnefs of fome Churches, or if there were many 
dtfcouragementsin the Parilhes they live in, yet eonfider that the 
time to come muft be refpefted, as well as the prefent ; and you 
fhould fo contrive k rather, that other Churches may in feafon be 
bettered. 9. And God hath, more m-eans then Minifterial abilities 
to increafe mens graces : He that keeps in Gods order under a mean 
er honeft Minifteir, is like to be a more humble, thriving Chriftian, 
then he that will break that order und^r pretence of edificatio-n. The 
Lord knows that I fpeak againft my own vifible carnal interefts in all 
this : For I am perfwaded,if I would have gathered fuch a Church 
out of other Parifhes, I could have had fo many of the ProfefTors for 
many miles compafs as would have made an" over-numerous Church. 


But God ufually chaftifeth men for fuch diforders, and fuffcreth thofe 
fame Profeflors to be our hearts-grief and fcourges ( by turning to 

doftrinal or practical evils ) who break Gods order and the Church 
es Unity in the over-valuing of our parts. And they are oft ready to 
pull out our eyes, that would have pulled out their own for us in a 
dittempered zeal. 10. Chriftians (hould not firft ask Q where may 1 
have the heft Minifter, or company, or fur eft Ordinances ? or Cohere maj 
I receive meft good * ] But they muft hrft ask [ where litth mj Duty ? 
and *hcrt may I do mcft good Q For Gods work mutt be done before 
our own. And the laving ot fouls and propagation of the Gofpel 
mult be preferred before our comforts. Yea let me tell you my ob- 
fervation; The Comfort that Chriftians have in a furtering felf- 
denyingcourfe of doing good, is afurer and moreftable Comfort 
then that which is drawn from the fpecial advantages of Ordinances. 
That map that lives among a company of poor ignorant fouls and 
will fet himfelf night and day refolvedly and unweariedly to teach 
them, perfwade them and win them to Chnft, till he have bettered 
the imperfed Church where he is, (hall ufually be a man of folidfet- 
ied peace: When he that faith [Thefe are Carnal, Heathens, wiek- 
rrf; Th**t*kjMb%pLi * *M go pjnmjfelfte fuch an excellent 
Mimjter and Church, and let them alone ] this man will likely be foon 
fadded with his new comforts , and weary of his pretious Ordi 
nances, and be as ready to vilifie them and turn to fome other till 
in thisdiforder he have run himfelf out of breath, if not out of all 
appearance of Grace. 

2.0t>j. But it may be objected, that by our propounding our 
Profefiion to All our Parifties, either as being already Church-mem 
bers, or at leaft to be admitted, we fhall take in all the unfit again 
and make but a meer (hew of Reformation ; for they will all taklatid 
make this Profe/fion, and fo be as they were before. 

Iconfefsl hear fome make this Objection ; but any conilderate 
man of competent reafon , may fee how groundless it is. For 
i. Enough we offer Chnft and Church-mem berfhip with him to all 
yet we do not admit all to be Church-members : For we admit not 
them that either refufe Chrift or refufe to be Members on his terms. 
Nor do we admit ail that will make this Profeflion barely with the 
tongue: For we have agreed, for thofe that underftandnot the 
Foundations,to Catechife them firft : And thofe that are notorious 
or proved fcandalous Tinners, we fhall firft require their ferious Pro- 

1 feflion 

" J 

feftion of Repentance, arid promife of Reformation. -2. We defire 
to know what you would require of men more then we do > on Scri 
pture grounds ? Are not all the Fundamentals in our Profeilion f> 
Dare you refufe him that owneth them all, as not beleeving truthes 
enough to falvation? And to know the fincerity of his heart, what 
can you require more then we do in our ProfefTion of Confent > 
Can any but a true Chriftian make that Profefiion ilncerely > I know 
you dare not affirm it. Will you devife means of your own head to 
iliut out hypocrites, as if you had more care of the purity of the 
Church, then Chrift had that purchafed it with his blood ? Youl fay, 
Men may profefs all this by rote asa form. I anfwer, i. BlefsGod 
if Truth have fo much friendfhip as to be profefled : I know many 
Profeflbrs that were contemptnoufty unthankfull for this mercy, who 
have not fo mch left themfetVes as a bare profeflion of the Funda 
mentals, but are given up to the open denial of them, and to profefs 
ppofition to them. It would be taken for a mercy in Indi*, yea in 
Jta/ror Spain, yea in France, if all could but be brought te an open 
Profeflion of Gods pure Truth,though with moft it were but formal. 

2. But Iwo-uld know how you will do to know mens hearts ? Will 
you require an account of the manner of their conversion? Alas, 
you require them but to delude you, or themfelves, or to do an im- 
poffibility. May not any man of knowledge tell a fair tale of conver- 
fion that never had it ? Is there not many a thoufand Chriftians that 
never knew the time or manner of their converfion ? And are there 
not many that do know much of the workings of Gods Spirit on their 
hearts, that have not words of their own to utter it ? If you fay, you 
would hear them give fome teftirnony or fignes, at leaft as at pre- 
fent of thework of Grace on them ; I anfwer, What better fignes 
can they give you then our Profeflion doth contain ? Sure I am, there 
fs the true dcfcription of a Chriftian : I have lately feen a Book of the 
experiences of Church-members given in ( its like not all at the firft 
admittance, and its like made thebeftof) but yet I am fure fadly 
dcfeftivc to an underftanding eye (many of them.) Pretend not to 
more then your part in fearching mens hearts, if you fay, 

are but words put into their mouthes. I anfwer, i . Prove that they 
come not from the heart if you can. 2. And are not the words of 
your Church-members learned before hand> Some body taught 
them or they could not exprefs their mindes. 

3. Doubtlefs our way is full as ftrid as we can finde any Scripture 
to-warrantus : (and we again defire you if you will go further, to 



prove it ty Scripture.) But if any Paftors will be carelefs in the exe 
cution, we cannot fully remedy that. Perufe our Proportions well s 
and tellus what you would have more herein ? If any Paftor sriiong 
your felves will be carelefs in examining Members, and admit men 
on bare words, you will not blame your own principles for that. I 
could never fee but the Brethren of the Ciaflkai way do come up to 
as much ftriftnels for the qualification of Members, as your ow* 
principles do require, or as you can defire them, fo be it the execu 
tion be but anfwerable : And that will lie on the perfons that manage 
the work, and not fo much on the principles. 

4. I pray you obferve how eafie Chrift is in Scripture in admit 
ting men to him, and taking Members into his Church, the Ads of 
the Apoftles throughout will tell you i How fuddenly after conver- 
fion they were baptized, even thoufands. But with thofe that arc 
in his Church Chrift is more ftrid, and requireth that their lives be 
anfwerable to their Profeilion. At firft he admitteth them without 
any further triall, the fame day that they protefs Repentance and 
Faith : But afterwards he will caft them out again > if they deny him 
by their works. If therefore you cannot blame us, in our Propofi- 
tions for cafting out the fcandalous ; you have lefs reafon to blame 
us for want of ftridnefs in the admiilion. Remember alfo the free- 
riefs of Grace ; and let not your Pulpit found with the name of free" 
Grace, when your practice contradideth it, by (hutting the door 
againft thofe that offer to come in on Chrifts own terms. If Chrift 
queftionyou for this, it will be but a cold anfwer to fay, Lord^ we 
could not perceive that they fpoke fincerely.]] For youmuft prove 
the contrary before you exclude him. All that ever I could hear to 
the contrary was but this much, All ,men muft prove their claim to 
priviledges, and not put another to difprove it. To which I fay, 
Suppofe that rule had no exceptions ; They prove it thus I arri en- 
gaged to Chrift by my Baptifmal Covenant; I ftand to that Covenant, 
believing what is mentioned in this ProfeilJon, and contenting to 
what is here mentioned ; therefore I exped the Church-priviledges 
of a Chriftian.J When he hath thus laid his claim, and {hewed his 
Title, you mult have fomething to prove it inefficient, or you muft 
not dare to deny him his priviledge. If you can prove that there is 
no probability that he is fincere in this Profeilion, it muft be either 
from his grofs ignorance of the meaning of the words which he ut- 
tercth, or elfe by his wicked life ; in both which cafes we agree with 

I 2 But 


But in the name of God Brethren take heed, as of polluting the 
Church by loofe admifiions, fo much more of cruelty to poor fouls. 
Remember how ill this befeems them that have tafted fo much mercy 
as we our felves have done ; and how prone they (hculd be to cover 
their Brethren* infirmities, who are confcious of Jo many of their 
own; and how backward to uncover their nakednefs, and to make 
the worft of their cafe, that have need of fuch gentle handling our 
felves. Remember Pauls command, Rom. 14.1. Him that is v\W<^ 
in the faith receive, but not to doubt full Difyxtaticns. See Gal.6. 1 ,2,3 . 
Remember how oft C hrift was accufed for being a friend or compa 
nion to publicans and linners? and by whom he was fo accufed > 
and how oft he (hewed lenity, and how feldom fevericy ? and how 
dreadfully he judgeth ra(h Judgers> and how unmeet it is thac the 
iervaat (hould be itrider in keeping out, then the Mafter is; and 
that man (hould pretend to be more righteous then God. Remem 
ber alfo that good Chriftians mtift have a^reat deilre of the largeneis 
as well as of the purity of Chrifts Church. Of. thirty parts which 
the world may be divided into, nineteen are faid to be Pagan-Idola 
ters, and fix parts Mahometans, and but five parts Chriftians. And 
of thefe Chriftians, when you have counted, the Abaflines, the 
Greeks, the Papifts, of all which ( with the other fmaller parties, as 
the Coplies, the Jacobines,^.) ids hard to fay which are the more 
ignorant and defective ; how few are the Reformed Churches ! And 
doth it befeem you with this poor handfujl to go fo neer the quick^ 
and to pare away more then Chrift alloweth you ? One feven years 
converfe with Indians and Turks, would make fome men more cha 
ritable to weaker common Proteftants while they lived. Above all 
take heed (in the Name of Chrift I warn you) that you be not cruel. 
to Chrifts Lambs : that you {hut not them out for want of meer 
ivords. Experience hath alcertained me, that there are Chriftians 
that are much with God, powerfull in iecret grones and ftrivings, 
and do underftand the fubftance of the Fundamentals and much more^ 
nay that are very able to help the ignorant, and great promoters of 
Gods work in their places ; who yet are not able to give a Mmifter 
or underftanding friend any confiderable account of their faith : 
Partly through ba(hfulnefs, but mcft through fome iecret natural 
unreadinefs of fpeech, and difability to exprefs their mindes. Take 
heed what you do with poor ignorant men and women that live well, 
and (hew a fear of offending God. He that gently drives and earn- 
eth his Lambs in his arms, will not thank you for (hutting them out 



or cafting them in the ditch. I know there is need of caution alfo for 
avoiding the loofer extream : but I am now fpeaking to you. Re 
member one thing more, and again I fay remember k: Whether 
die fearful I Scandals, Blafphemies and Apoftacies of Profeflbrs in 
this age, when many ftand faft and fear God, that were accounted 
but common civil ignorant people, be not a warning and teftimony 
from heaven againil our over-valuing meer Gifts and Words, and 
our under- valuing poor weak Chriftians,tbat want them ; and yet are 
as loth to fin as others. 

As for the Objection about our denying Church-Government to 
the people, I anfwered it in the Explication of the Proportions : We 
give them the fumme of what all moderate men defire, in giving them 
a Judgement of Difcretion, and freedom from all humane inflaving 
of confcience. If any will needs have them be alfo Church-Gover- 
nours by the major Vote, there is no pofiibility of Union with thofe 
that hold fuch fandy Principles, dircdly deft r udive to the very Being, 
of true Political Churches and Government, 

The next Objeftors that I have to deal with, are our Brethren of 
the Epifcopal Way ; whofe difTent I am readier to expeft then others- 
not fo much from the diftance of Principles, as from other accidental 
difadvantages which I forefee. 

The Objections which our vulgar hearers of that Judgement do 
make, are partly occafioned from cuftom, partly from the fuggefti- 
ons of Learned men of that Way, who alfo confirm them in the for 
mer. And therefore I muft here fpeak firft to the people, and then to 
thofe Learned men that prevail with them. 

Very many of the people that ftick moft refolutely to that party 
and thofe waies ( of my acquaintance,) are fuch as we cannot admic 
to Communion with us, till they (hall openly profefs their Repen 
tance of their drunkennefs, fwearing, fcorning at Godlinefs, 

which they are notorioufly guilty of: Thefe I will not ftand to dif- 
pute with about Ceremonies, they having greater matters fir A to 
difpatch. But I am not fo uncharitable or cenforious as to imagine, 
that none are tender confcienc t, Pious and Judicious, that may yec 
need fatisfaftion iii the following points. To iuch therefore I fhali 
firft fpeak. 

The Objedi^ns which I have great reafon to forefee will be here 
raifed, are thefe three, i. That we do in our Agreement in the tenth 

I 3 Propo- 

Propofition take to our felves a Power which is proper to the Bi 
fhops, -vi*. to name offenders, and call them to Repentance, and re 
quire the Church to avoid them : When as in the firii Proportion 
we profefs to agree only on the Points that are agreed on by the dif 
fering parties. 2. That we are no true Churches, both becaule we 
are not Diocefan Churches, and becaufe we have no Bifhops, and be- 
caufe that many of us were Ordained without Bifhops, and fo are no 
true Minifters, and therefore it is unlawnail to acknowledge us as 
Paftors, or to joyn with our Churches as Members. 3. That they 
cannot in confcience joyn with us, unlefs they may before-hand be 
affured, that they may have the Sacrament kneeling, and the Litur- 
gic ufed as formerly it hath been. I (hall anfwer thele three Objecti 
ons in order, 

To the firft I anfwer : i . They may as well fay that Preaching and 
Paftoral overfight is proper to the Bifhop ( which fome do not fttck 
to do ) for no Word of God or common reafon reftrains that Pallor 
from particular applications, who hath Authority for general ones. 
Is there greater Authority requisite for fpeaking to one man> then 
to a thoufand ? or for doing tnat which in fome cafes every private 
man may do (tell his Brother of his fin, and tell the Church of him 
if he reform riot ) then for the reft of the Minifterial work ? If a pri 
vate man may before others reprove him as a private man, may not I 
before others reprove him Authoritatively as a Miniiter ? I would 
know whether it be all perfonal, open Applications that you forbid a. 
Paftor ? or only this one ? If all, then you (hew as indeed what the 
fruit of your kinde of Epifcopacy would be : how it would overthrow 
the very Office and Work of the Miniftry, and not allow a Minifter 
to reprove or exhort a man, as his cafe required! . If a man fall a 
fwearing in the Church when I am Preaching, I may not as a Minifter 
rebuke him ? I have read of times when Bifhops did arrogate Preach 
ing as their fole prerogative ( except fometimes when they faw good 
to perm it a Presbyter to Preach extraordinarily :) but I never read 
of any that forbad them all open perfonall Applications. I fuppofe 
therefore that you will not affirm this. And if I may apply other 
truths to the confciences of my people, then why not this > Is it be 
caufe of the nature of the thing ? or from any limitation of my Power 
in Cods Word ? Prove cither if you can. May I not by way of ex 
hortation lay to a Drunkard Q I intreat you in the Name of Chrift 
to be fober, and forfake your fin ?] Why may not I then fay [Xhrijft 
hath threatned damnation to you, except you repent ] and The 


Church ought not to have Communion with you as a Brother tillyou* 
do Repent J and You owght riot to ufurp the Priviledge that be 
longs not to you] and [[With fuch as you we ought not to eat] and 
fo to require in Chrifts Name obedience to his Laws ? Hath Chrift 
bid me Preach one Text of Scripture,and not another ? May I require 
them to obey that command, Heb. 10.25. Fwftike not the tjftm&Unt 
tfjcxrjelvcs together"] and reprove thofe that difobey it (perfonally) 
in not coming to the Affemblies, or.feldom? And maylnot.onthe 
fame Authority require them to obey that command, i Cor. 5.11.. 
But now / have Written to yett not to keey company, If any man that M 
called a Brother be afornicator, or coveteus, or fin Idolater, or a Railer, 
or a drunkard, or an extortioner, With fuch a one no not to eat."] Or that 
in 2 Joh. i o, 1 1 . If there come any unto yon, and bring not thu doftrme, 
receive him not into your hottfe, neither hid him, God (jtted. For he thai 
biddethhim,God(peed 3 i4fartakerofhi$evildteds. ~] And that 2Thef. 
3 .6, 1 4, 1 5 . Now We command you Brethren in the Name of our Lord 
feftts Chrift, that ye Withdraw your felvts from every Brother thatW>al_k? 
eth diforderly , and mt after the Tradition Which he received of ut. And 
if any man obey not ottr Word by thu Epiftle, note that man, ^ind have 
no company With him, that he may be afhamed. Tet count him not a* an 
enemy >but admonifi him at a Brother. ], May not Mtnifters require their 
people in particular cafes to obey thefe precepts ? 

2. Nay, may not, nay mtift not our people obey thefe precepts 
whether we require them or not ? yea though we forbid them ? Elfe 
God (hall be no God, without the Bifhops licenfe. You cannot fay 
therefore that we may not apply thefe precepts to particular perfons 
and cafes, for our people nwft apply them, or elfe they cannoc 
obey them. Perufe them and judge fo, Rem. 16. 17. with many 
the like. 

3 . Is it not the doftrine of the Bifhops themfelves that Presbyters 
may Rule, Guide, and Overfee the people; buc chac Bifhops mu ft 
Rule, and Overfee the Presbyters ? So that this is the main difference 
that they make of the Offices in degrees, in ^out of Ji/riididion, 
that both are Overfeers, but one of the pec pie, che other or Piftors : 
Why then may not we be allowed the Cuidance > Rule and Over light 
of our people > 

4. They that diftinguifh bet^-een the Key of order and rf-.e Key of 
Jurifdidion, do without queftion allow the former ro rr e P-- -s yv . ersv 
Now the Key of order (as rjgbtiy underilood, *s S^daien*^ hath 
largely opened it) compreheiidetft all that power wii^reby ^c i -> 


immediatly work on the conference, and fo is exercifed info 
and not directly in externo. Now that which we have agreed on 15 
only fo much as belongs to order, or to a Presbyter as the AmbafTa- 
dor of Chrift, and his Watchman over the fouls of thofe people ; and 
it is to be no further effectual then they confciencioufly (ubmit to it, 
voluntarily, without external force. It is but our Preaching and ap 
plying Gods Word to the confciences of the hearers. 

5. It feems they that make this Objection, would have Gods 
work undone, if there be not Bifhops to do it. Men muft not be 
told openly of their fin and danger and duty, nor the Church be told 
of their duty in avoiding the fcandalous, except Bifhops do it. Wo 
then to all thofe Nations and Churches that have no Bifhops, and 
wo to thofe Churches where the Bifhop will not do it ; and fpecially 
where he will rather countenance the (inner, and fifence or banifh 
the Preacher that would reform them. More (hall be faid anon to this 

2. To the fecond Ob jection (That we are no true Churches or 
Minifters, ^r.) I anfwer, i. I muft here necefiarily give notice to 
all that fhall reade thefe Papers, whatkindeof men they be that I 
have to deal with in this. 

There are in England two forts of Epifcopal Divines. The one 
fort are Proteftants, differing in nothing confiderable from the reft 
of the Reformed Churches, fave only in this matter of Church-Go 
vernment. Thefe ( if they be not ignorant, ungodly, negligent, in- 
fufficient, ) I (hall heartily reverence and defire their Union ; And 
many of them the Church hath had, and yet hath, with whom I ac 
count my felf unworthy to be once named : Such as were fetvell t 
Davenant, and many more formerly ; and fuch as are A. B. U/ber, 
B.H^//, B. Morton, D r Sanderfen and many more at this day. I am 
very confident that we have not in our Proportions agreed on any 
cxercife of Difcipline, which is not agreeable to the Principles of 
Protcftant Bifhops to grant us ; nay which Papifts do not very many 
of them allow, where no Bifhops are. if therefore any of you that 
are our hearers, being not able to maintain your own conceits, or 
objections againft us, will fly to the Authority of Epifcopal Divines ; 
we muft intreat you to go to the Writings of Proteftants only ; and 
if you will enquire of any now living, let them be fuch as our old god 
ly Protcftant Bifhops were : Or elfe I muft tell you we neither expect 



their conjunction with us, nor (hall much be moved by their Judge 

For there is a fecond fort of Epifcopal Divines of the laft edition, 
and of the growth of about thirty years, who differ from us in greater 
matters then Epifcopacy, being indeed Caff4*4n** Papifts, and le 
velling all their doftrines to the advancement of the Papall intereft - 
If you will appeal to thefe Epifcopal Divines,we (hould almoft as fooa 
confent to an appeal to Rowe. 

I muft defire you to underftand thus much that you may know 
whom I mean. The French are more moderate Papifts then the Spa 
niards and Italians are : Efpecially as to the points of the Popes In 
fallibility, and his power over a General Council ; and many of them 
deny molt of his Power over the Churches and Bifhops of other Na 
tions. Since the mixture of the Englifb and French blood, there have 
been ftrong endeavours afoot to make thefe two Nations of one Re 
ligion, and that muft be the moderate Caftandrian Popery. Whac 
agitations have been among our Superiours to that end, I will noc 
once prefume to meddle with : But ( to fpeak of Scholars whom 
Scholars may be bolder with as being fitter Judges of their waies 
which their Writings do difcover ) one of the firft and moft famous 
Trumpets that founded a retreat to the Chriftian world, to return 
(on thefe terms) to Rome, was H.Grotius, a man of great reading, 
much Learning, and a mighty Judgement to improve it; buc being 
imprifoned in his Country for his adions for the Arminians in the 
great ftirres that were then a foot, and having efcaped (being carri 
ed out in a Trunk) was made the Swedijb AmbafTador with the King 
of France. This exafperated Learned man, by his refidence in F ranee > 
did both lie open the more to the reception of imprefiions from the 
Jefuites, who were his great familiars, and alfo had the fairer oppor*. 
tunity among thofe Papifts of the more moderate fort, to profecute 
hisdefignes, for the reconciling of both parties ( Papifts and Prote- 
ftants ) in a Caffandritn Popery. To this work he let hirafelf with 
all his might, publifhing Ctjfander s Confultatkms with his Notes; 
feeking to draw us up to the Council of Trent ( but not to the opini 
ons of their private Doctors.) Several Writings between him and 
Rivttt, with paflages in his Annotations do (hew us what was his Re 
ligion. This defign had many favourites, of the better fort of the 
Pipifts, and the colder arid more Ceremonial party of the Proteftants. 
Fran- a Satf&i Clara,alias Davenport ( provincix Angli& FF. Mino- 
ntm Exminisier Provincixlis, Olim apud Dtiticenfes Lettor ThcologLt 

K Prima- 


Primarily t NMIC vero fer. Regina magtta Britannia afacris&c.. faith 
Thwbite in the Dedication ot his Inftit.Sacr. to him: and yet he 
\\zt\\\nLondon) did by his Writings deeply engage in it ; feekingto 
reconcile the Articles of the Church of England, tvith rhe Council 
tf Trent : ( for fo high we muft go as that Council, or no Reconci- 
fetion.) How far this defign took in England, is eafie in a greater 
meafure to difcover, by many changes orla^er times. Hew far it pre 
vailed with the Bifhops and the Kings Chaplains, and other Doctors, 
I had rather leave to your felves to judge, then take from my word ; 
only I would defire you but impartially to reade the Articles that 
were in the beginning of the Parliament (while L.D/^j, L.Fattlf^d 
and- fuch others joyned, with them ) preferred by che Commons of 
England againft >.Wren, "B. Pierce, \*>.<jocdman 3 with the reft of them . 
And obferye how they all feemed Proteftants, as long as the Warre 
was like to profper for them ; but fincethat ishopelcfs, how eafily 
D r VMC, D l Baily, D r Gcffe , with many more are turned Papifts- 
( of whom the Legends Lignea will give you an account :) But fome 
had more wit then thele, and think they may do that Party more fer- 
vice by flaying in England, under the names of Epifcopal Divines, 
a great deal then they can do by declaring themfelves Papifts: And 
therefore they rather choofe yet to make life of thefe greater Advan 
tages : And I confefs they have very many and very great : And I 
take my felf bound to proclaim to the Inhabitants of this Nation, this 
publique warning (that they may efcape the danger if yet it be pof- 
fible ; ) and to tell them that he is ftark blinde that doth not fee fo 
ftrong a defign laid for the introduction of Popery, that gives it a 
ftrong probability of prevailing, if God do not wonderfully blaft ir. 
The firft part of the Plot is, by blowing up the fparks of all Errours 
and Herefies, that our Churches being divided, may become odious, 
and fo men may be prepared for a remove. (The kindling of dilTenti- 
ons and Warres between Prote-ftants, let God and the Authors look 
after ; I will not meddle with that.) The next is an inceflant endea-- 
vour to infed all perfons, efpecially thofe in Power, Civtl or Milita 
ry, with the opinion of Libertinifrn,that all their dodrines may have 
Toleration and free vent, and their practices a free exercife. They 
will not yet openly friew themfelves till their expeded freedom 
be eftablifhed : but if once they were fure of it, fo that their, open 
dealing would be no hazard to their Toleration, you (hould have- 
them as bufily running into our Pulpits, or challenging the weaker 
Minifters to Difpute about the truth of our Church and Religion, as 



any Anabaptifts do now. For their third Plot is to get down the 
Learned, Judicious, Godly, Painfull Minifters; at leaft to take away 
their publique Maintenance ; and then they know how great a pare 
of the people ( fo impoverifhed already by Warres and Taxes) will 
take him for their Minifler that will do it beft cheap, and will moft 
humour them : And then they know that one Jefuite will fhame and 
filence a hundred fuch Minifters in difputation, and carry the Coun- 
trey before them in many places. And the fourth part of their Plot 
is, to hinder all Union of the Learned Godly Minifters, and all ex- 
ercife of any Difcipline, or maintaining of Church order ; that fo 
they may tell the world, we have no Church, no Government, &c. 
and that fo by divifion we may be difabled from oppofing them ; and 
we may not obtain that ftrength among our felves, nor that intereft 
in the people, which our Unity and Unanimity would afford us a- 
gainft them. And therefore I know they will malice our Union in 
this County. The fifth, and not the leaft part of the Plot is, to keep 
afoot a Party of Learned men, who under the name of Epifeopal 
Divines, may keep an intereft in the people, and partly draw them 
from Unity, and from obeying their Paftors, by pretending a ne- 
ceflity of Epifcopacy and Ceremonies,and keeping open the breaches 
upon that occaiion made, ; and partly may inftill into them thofe 
principles which may prepare them for flat Popery. And I confefs 
its a great advantage that they have for this Work. For i. Some 
of them are men of fo much Learning as may deferve much refped:. 
2. Some Minifters lately put in, are young* weak, and indifcreet, 
and fit matter for them to contemn, and modeftly to make ftepping 
ftones to their own reputation. 3 . The Gentry that did with them 
adhere to the late King, are under fo much fuffering in their Eftate, 
Reputation, Places of Honour, d-r. that no man can wonder if their 
mindes be much exafperated, and alienated from thofe Minifters that 
were not of their Party (efpecially when they have weak injudicious 
men to be their Minifters:) Nor fhould any wonder if they very 
much value and prefer thofe Learned Divines that were of their 
fide : And fo be ready to hear their Judgements before others. 
4. And yet more muft it needs endear them to the Gentry, in that 
they are their fellow-fufferers in the fame caufe : many of them be 
ing fequeftred, and caft out of their places, for the matter of the 
\yarres : And all men naturally pity the fuffering, but efpecially 
their fellow-fufferers. I fcarcely know the thing in the world that 
more uniteth and endeareth men, r then fuffering together in a caufe 

K 2 which 

which they chink good, 5. And when thefe men have fecretly in- 
fnared th* Gentry, what a mighty influence the Gentry will have 
on their Tenants and poor neighbours, is eafie to be judged, both 
to draw them firft from their Minifters, and next from their Re 

So that, alas, it is a poor low game that the other Sects in England 
are playing in comparifon of the Papifls. The Plot in a word is this. 
The multitude and madnefs of other Sects muft be the means to drive 
them from their prefent {ration. The Caflandruw Papifls under the 
name of Epifcopal Divines, muft be the inftruments to draw them 
from their prefent ftation, and loofen them from their Minifters 
and fo to prepare them for the Church of Rome and then when the 
matter is ripe, they muft deliver them all up to the Mafs-Prieils ; 
and when any publique Difputations are abroad, they muft give the 
Papifts the better, and >afs into their Camp. 

I do judge it my duty to defire all the people of England, efpecial- 
ly the Gentry, todifcernthe danger that they are in, and beware: 
and to be jealous left their difcontents and paflions fhould betray 
their fouls : and fo left they do themfelves more wrong then all iheir 
enemies ever did them. And do not think that I cenfure you too 
uncharitably, in thinking you in fo much danger of Popery. For 
you are but men : and it is no eafie matter to break through fo many 
difcontents, enticements, prejudices and other great temptations^ 
which any man may fee in your way : I fee the nets are ftrong, and 
the fifhes moft of them weak, and therefore it is eafie to prophefie 
what is like to become of you, if God do not fpeedily fhew you the 
danger. Yea many of the more Learned Gentlemen of your own 
party, are lately awakened to fee your danger ; pardy by the num 
ber of them that are already turned Papifts, and partly by the indu- 
ftry of the Papifts to pervert the reft : And they do themfelves pub- 
li(h to the world, what a pack of notorious ignorant, filly fouls, or 
wicked unclean perfons, thofe are that are turned Papifts ; fuch as 
are no great credit to the Religion that they turn to. See the. Au- 
thour of Legend* *Ltgnea, M r CLifenhall againft f}*Vane, M r Wa- 
therhoftfe for Learning ; all zealous men for Epifcopacy ; And indeed 
.this is a great part of the danger, that very many of the Gentry are 
to thrs day, after ail the warnings of Gods Judgements, fo fenfual 
* and licentious, fo prophane and deboift, fpending almoft all their 

time in drinking, hawking, hunting, bowling, yea fwearing and 
ungodly praftices ( wafting that pretiousiime in vanity,which 



the Lord knows they had as great need to redeem for a preparation 
for death and judgement, as other men) that it is no wonder if God 
in judgement do give them up for a prey to the Papifts : That they 
that would not reduce their lives to their right belief, fhould he per 
mitted to reduce their belief to their vicious lives. I can but faithfully 
warn you of your danger, and proclaim to you all, that the Gentry 
of England that were adherents to the King, are now under fo great 
temptations, and fo great danger of Popery, that if God be not very 
merciful! to them, they are gone. He that will deliver men from evil, 
will have them pray, Lead us not into temptations, you fhall have them 
ere long infmuating themfelves with you, .if- you be not fore-armed 

And among all others your greateft danger will be from the Popifh 
Divines, that lurk under the name of Episcopal. 

If you ask me how you fhall know them to be fuch. I anfwer, If 
they could be eafily and certainly known, there were the lefs danger 
of them. But you may fee much in this, one thing : All their Wri 
tings or Difcourfes do carry on the Romans Intereft. You may finde 
in thofe of them that write of Dt drinals or Devotion, i. The phia 
footftepsof common Popery. I am loth to name men -but I could 
eafily (hew you a great deal of Popery in divers fuch Books which I 
fee much in Gentlemens hands r as written by an Epifcopal Dodtor. 
And thofe of them that write about Church-Government, do quite 
forfake our Proteftant Bifhcps, and carry on thofe principles,, by 
which they may prove the Proteitant Churches to be no Churches ; 
nor our Minifters any Mirufters; nor our people true Chriftians: 
and which would neceflitate us to go to Rcme for our Orders; 
which we cannot have without being fworn fervants to the 

Thefe are the men that I have now to .deal: with : for theirs are the 
Objections now to be aniwered. 

They fay we are no Miniflers, i . Becaufe many were Ordained by 
rneer Presbyters without Bifhops. 2. Others were but the Bifhops 
Curates, who were the fole Paftors of Churches, And fo we ha?e 
no Churches neither. Fork can be no Poktkall organized Church 
without Paftors. And therefore our people fhould not fubmii to 
our Guidance , nor other Minifters aflbciate with us as wixh 

To this I now anfwer, i. It is manifeft that the contrivers of thefe 
Objections are not Proteftants (in this at lea ft.) For i. They do 

K 3 hereby 


hereby at one blow deny all the Minifters of almbft atl the Proteftant 
Churches to be Minifters at all : For they are-none of them Ordain 
ed by Bifhops, except in England, or very few mor,if any. So 
France, Holland, Scotland, the free Cities, Hefo?tia,8cc. mult have 
no Minifters, Nay the Superintendents of Denmark?, Sweden, and 
fom e parts of Germany, being themfelves -but appointed by the Ma- 
giftrate, and (as I take ic) having at firft no Ordination by Bifhops, 
no nor themfelves pretending to that which in the judgement of our 
Antagonifts, is the Office of a Bifhop, it muft needs follow that 
there are no true Minifters in any of the Proteftant Churches, but 
what our own Dominions do afford. 

2. Nay hereby they unchurch all thofe Churches at a blow. For 
if they are no Minifters,they can be no Organized Churches,no more 
then we. , 

3. Hereby they would abfolve all the people of the Reformed 
Religion in France, Holland, Helvetia, Scotland,^, from all obedi 
ence to their Paftors as fuch. 

* ^4. Yea, I think, hereby they would unchriften all the Reformed 
Chriftians in all thefe Nations. For they fay ( that s their great ar 
gument ) no man can give that which he never had : but Presbyters 
never had power to Ordain : Therefore they cannot give it : and 
Bifhops did not give it them. And will it not hold as ftrongly Q Lay 
men never had power given them to Baptize ; therefore they cannot 
give it to others, or exercife it themfelves/J Now if the Minifters of 
the Reformed Churches be no Minifters, but Lay-men, then prove 
where any power to Baptize is given them. If thefe that I Difpute 
with will fhew themfelves openly to be Papifts, and plead that. wo 
men or Lay-men may Baptize in cafe of Neceffity, I fhall deiire them 
to tell me, who gave them that power, and when, and by what ex- 
preffions ? and then we will compare a Presbyters power to Ordain, 
witn a Lay-mans power to Baptize, and try with them, which hath 
the clearer Commiilion. In the mean time, it befeems not me to 
fpend time on this Queftion, while the whole Army of the Learned 
Proteftant Divines (Bifhops and others) who have written againft 
the Papifts in this point, remain fo much unanfwered. 

5. Yea hereby they would make the Praifes, publique V\ r orfhip, 
and Sacramental Adminiftrations proper to the Miniftry, to be all 
meer Nullities : and fo God hath no Miniftedal fervice in any of our 
Churches 1 O happy Rome ! O miferable Reformed Churches, if ail 
or any of this be true. 



6. What if thefe few Bifhops.that gre left in England were dead, 
or what if they die before any other be ordained in their rooms ? 
Why then we nu:ft go to feme other Churches ( fay they) for help. 
But what other Churches can we goto that hath Bifhops but Rome ? 
And who knows not that if we would feek to fame for Orders, that 
we cannot obtain it without fwearing to be true to the Pope, and 
the doctrine of the Council of Trent, and caufing all cur charge to 
be true to them to the death and this with a Spondeo, T oyec ac faro,, 
pc me Dcas &djii*uet & hac fan ft a Evangelist : as the "Trent Creed 
concluded!. Are not thefe think you zealous Proteftants ? 

7. And if our Princes be of the minde as all Reforming Princes hi 
therto have been, to forbid all dependance on fame, and fee-king thi 
ther for Orders, as accounting it dangerous that their iubjecls fhould 
have fo much dependance on forreign Powers, what fhali we do for 
Ordination then ? 

8. It feems by thefe men, if thefe few Bifhops were dead without 
fuccefibrs, the Church of Chrift, at leaft in England, were extind. 
For if Rome be a true Church ( which I deny not, without diftincli- 
on) yet it is eafie to prove that we may not lawfully take their Or- 
dination on their terms : , and then it feems the Church of England 
dependeth on thefe few men for its Being to the worlds end, in. all 
likelihood. O what a rafh thing it was to imprifon wren for Excom 
municating, Sufpending or Depriving, Cen-iuring, Silencing, fifty 
Godly painfull Minifters in two years in Nb nvlch Diocefs, ior not 
reading the Book for Dancing on the Lords daies, For uilng concei 
ved Prayer before and after Sermon, For not reading the Service at 
the Alcar, and fuch like : And for expelling three thou-fand perfohs 
with their families into other Lands, by fuch dealings, with many the- 
like courfes 1 How rafhly did they accufe B. Pkrcc lor fuch like pra 
ctices, and putting down Mtnifters and Preaching, till he thanked 
God that he had not a Lecture in his Diocefs, aliedging that though 
there was need of Preaching in the Infancy of the Church, yet now 
there was no fuch need ; fufp^nding Minifters for Preaching on Mar 
ket daies and did fo eifeduaily put cfown ail afternoon Sermons orr 
the Lords daies, that befulpended him that Preached but a Funeral 
Sermon; and puttheMinirter to Penance that did but explain the 
Church Catechifm, faying that was as bad as Preaching, and charg 
ing them that they ask no Queftions, nor receive any Anlwers from 
the people, but fuch as were contained in the Catechifm in the Ser 
vice Book ;, and putting the Church-Wardens to Penance for not 



Prefenting them that did otherwife ; yea commanding that the com 
mon Service (hould not be too long, that the people might not be 
hindered from their Recreations at the Wakes : yea puniftiing a Mi- 
nifter for Preaching on a Text in fonts of fading, weeping and mour 
ning, on the Wakes day, telling him his Test was fcandalous to the 
Wakes. (And all thefe they lay upon the King, as being his Will.) 
Butwhatfhouldl tell a people of thefc things that have felt them. 
Had the Parliament known that it might lie in thefe mens hands, whe 
ther England fhail ever ( in likelihood ) have Minifters more, or 
whether ever Chrift (hall have a Church in England more or not ; 
Yea whether ever he (hall have any Minifterial W or (hip, or one 
perfon Baptized into Chrift ; it might have f eemed more wit to have 
let them crucifie the prefent Church, then extinguifh our hopes for 
ever. Now when honeft B. VJ&er, Hall, and one or two more arc 
dead, the Parliament muft go to the Tower to intreat thefe prifoners, 
that Chrift may once more have a Church in England; but if they 
prove as dogged as they were wont to be, the Church is extind, 
there is no probable remedy; our children cannot be Chriftened 
again for ever,becaufe no man without a Bifhop can Authorifea Mi- 
nifter to do it. 

9. But fuppofe we could fend to Prefler John, and prevail with him 
for fome Biftiops (when the vaft Kingdom of N tibia that was near 
er him could not borrow fome Preachers to fave the life of gafping 
Chriftiantcy, but it was extind for want of them ;) Yet, alas, how 
is k poilibie that we in England could be fure that their Biihops were 
rightiy Ordained, having their power from Generation to Genera 
tion by a fucceliion of lawfully Ordained Bifhops ? Yea if we could 
get fome but from Rttjfia or Constantinople, our difficulty were infu- 
perable. But I beleeve thefe Objedors would not have us to go fo 
far, but rather ftoop to Rome s conditions. 

10. Bar, have not Councils determined, That the Ordination (hall 
be Null which a Bifhop makes out of his own Diocefs ? Condi. Anti- 
och.Can. 13.^22. and then our cure is yet more difficult. 

f ii. But what need I tell an Englifb man that thefe Objedors are 
not fons of the Church of England, what ever they pretend, when 
the world knows that the Church of England took him to be a true 
Minitter that was Ordained in France, Holland, Scotland, Geneva, 
Heidelberge, &c. by meer Presbyters without a Bifhop ? The world 
knows that we did not Ordain thofe again that were fo Ordained ; no 
more then we bapcized diofe again that were there baptized. The 


world knows that we gave them the right hand of Fellowship as 
true Churches of Chrift, when we fet light by Rom. And muft thofe 
now be Sons and Dodtors of the Church ot England that would per- 
fwade the poor people,that they are no Paftors that are not Ordained 
by Bifhops > 

1 2. If yet the matter be not clear, let me intreat you to perufe the 
Writings of the moft zealous defenders of Epifcopacy in the Church 
of England, and fee whether they did not defend the truth of thofe 
Churches and Minifters callings that have no Bifhops ; and the Pa- 
ftorail Offices there performed of Minifters in Guiding their Flocks 
(though they think it were better if they had Biihops.) I will not fend 
you to Chamier, Partw, Sadeel, or any of our forreign Divines,, 
who in their Writings againft Bellarmine and other Papifts debate this 
Queftion, becauie they are known to be defenders of their ow& 
Churches. Nor will I mention wUtakers, Reignolds, or any the rncft 
Learned Do&ors of our Univerfities, who are fufpeded to be no 
great friends to Epifcopacy : But thofe that are paft all fuch fufpition 
1 will cite ; (yet not many, as not ftanding with my neceflary brevity, 
and being in a known cafe.) 

i . Dodor Field the Learned Dean of Gloafter in his 3 . U. of the 
Church, & -.3 9. handleth this very point of purpofe againft the Pa 
pifts, whom he brings in thus arguing By this note it is eaite to 
prove that the Reformed Churches are not the true Churches of 
God. It can be no Church that hath no Minifter : and Cjfr. faith, 
the Church is nothing elfe but Plebs pifcopo adunttta. But among the 
Proteftants there is no Miniftry ; Therefore no Church.] D r Field 
anfwers [The minor we deny,<^r .] Yea when they further Objeft, 
p. 1 5 5 . [Whatfoever may be faid of thofe places where Bifhops did 
Ordain, yet in many other places none but Presbyters did impofe 
hands, all which Ordinations are clearly void, and To by confequent 
many of the pretended Reformed Churches, as France,&c. have no 
Miniftry at all.] To this the Doctor anfwers at large: and diftin- 
guiihing between i. Eledion of the perfon. 2. Ordination in ge- 
nerall to the Miniftry. 3. The afiigning to a man that ^portion of 
Gods people, which he is to take care of, who muft be diretted by him 
in things that pertain to the hope of falvation,] he adds This parti 
cular ailignation giveth to them that had only the power of order 
before, the power of Jurifdi&ion alfo, over the perfons of men.] (So 
the Presbyters have power of Jurifdidion he thinks.) Next he addes, 
Lp-157- Whereby it is moft evident that that wherein a Btfhop ex- 

L celletb 


celleth a presbyter, is not a diftind power of Order, but an eminency 
and dignity only, fpedally yielded to one above all the reft of the 
fame Rank for order fake, and to prefcrve the unity and pace of the 
Church: Hence it followed* that many things which in fome cafes 
Presbyters may lawfully do, are peculiarly referved unto Bifhops, sg 
Hteront noteth ; PottM ad konvrem Sacerdoti], quam ad legis necejfita- 
tw, rather for the honour of their Miniftry, then the neceflity of 
any law, and therefore we reade that Presbyters in fome places, ard 
at fome times did impofe hands, and confirm fuch as were baptized : 
which when Gregory Bifhop of Rome would wholly have forbidden,, 
there was fo great exception taken to him for it, that he left it free 
again. And who knoweth not, that all Presbyters in cafes of necefli 
ty may abfolve and reconcile penitents ; a thing in ordinary courfe 
appropriated unto Bifhops : And why not by the fame reafon Or 
dain Presbyters and Deacons in cafes of like neceflity ? for feeing 
thecaufe why they are forbidden to do thefe ads is, becaufe to Bi~ 
fliops ordinarily the care of all Churches is committed, and to them 
in all reafon the Ordination of fach as muft ferve in the Church per- 
faineth, that have the chief care of the Church, and have Churches 
wherein to imploy them ; which only Bifhops have as long -as they 
retain their ftanding; and not Presbyters, being but Afliftants to 
Bifhops in their Churches. If they become enemies to Cod and true 
Religion, in cafe of fuch neceflity, as the care of Government of the 
Church is devolved to the Presbyters remaining Cathoiique, and be 
ing of a better fpirit: fo the duty of Ordaining fuch as are to aflift or 
fucceed them in the Work of the Miniftry, pertains to them likewise, 
For if the power of Order, and Authority to intermeddle in things 
pertaining to Gods fer vice, be the fame in all Presbyters, and that 
they be limited in the execution of it, only for order fake, fo that in 
cafe of neceflity every of them may baptize and confirm them whom 
they have baptized, abfolve and reconcile penitents, and do all thofe 
other ads, which regularly are appropriated unto the Bifhop alone j. 
there is no reafon to be given, but that (in cafe of neceflity, wherein 
all Bifhops were extinguifhed by death, or being fallen into here- 
fie, (hould refufe to Ordain any to ferve God in his true Wor~ 
fhip) Presbyters as they may do all other ads, whatsoever fpecial 
challenge Bifhops in ordinary courfe make unto them, might do 

Who then dare condemn all thofe worthy M nifterst)f God that 
ware ordained, by Presbyters in fundry Churches of the world at fuch 



times as Bifliops in thofc pares whae they lived oppofed tfcemfelves 

againft the truth of God, and perfecuted fuch as profefTed it ? Sure 
ly the beft Learned in the Church of Rome, in former times durft no* 
pronounce all Ordinations of this nature to be void. For not only 
^r-ntachafttu a very Learned and worthy Biftiop, but as it appears by 
Alexander or Bales ^ many Learned men in his time and before, were 
of opinion that in fome cafes, and at fome times, Presbyters may give 
Orders, and that their Ordinations are of force, though to do fo> 
not being urged by extream neceffity, cannot be excufed from over- 
great boldnefs and preemption ; neither (houlditfeem fo ftrange 
to our adverferies that the power of Ordination fhould at fome times 
be yielded uato Presbyters, feeing their Chwepifcopifoffragatts or 
titular Bifhops that live in the Diocefs and Churches of other BL- 
(hops, and are no Bifliops according to the old courfe of Difcipline^ 
do daily in the Romifh Church both Confirm children and give 

All that may be alledged out of Fathers for proof of the contrary, 
may be reduced to two heads. For fir ft, whereas they make all fuch 
Ordinations void as are made by Presbyters, it is to be understood 
according to the ftricinefs of the Canons in ufe in their time, and not 
abfolutely in the nature of the thing ; which appears in that they 
likc,wife make all Ordinations fine tituh to be void : all Ordinations 
of Bifhops, ordained by fewer then three Bifhops with the Metropor 
litane : all Ordinations of Presbyters by Bifhops out of their own 
Churches without fpecial leave : Whereas I am well aflured the Ro- 
manifts will not pronounce any^ of thefe to be void, though the par 
ties fo doing are not excufable from all fault. Secondly,Their fay ings 
are to be underftood regularly not without exception of fome fpecial 
cafes that may fall out. 

Thus then we fee the Objection, which our adverfaries took to be 
unanfwerable, is abundantly anfwcred out of the grounds of their 
own Schoolmen, the opinion of many fingularly learned amongft 
them, and their own daily pra&ice,in that Ckorepifcopi or Suffragans, 
as they call them, being not Bifhops, but only Presbyters whatfoever 
they pretend, and forbidden by all old Canons to meddle in Ordi 
nation, yet do daily with good allowance of the Roman Church, Or 
dain Presbyters and Deacons, confirm (with impofition of bands) 
thofe that are baptized, and do all other Epifcopal ads whiles their 
great Bifhops Lord it like Princes in all temporal eafe and worldly 

L2 (I will 

( I will adde his Afifwtr to the next Objeftion, becaufe it is to th* 
fame purpofe with theirs that now tell us we are not lawful! Minifters 
we are wrongfully put into other mens places by Sequeftrators ; 
Thus therefore D r Field proceedeth ) The next thing they Objeft 
againft us is, that our firft Minifters, what Authority foever they 
had that Ordained them, yet had nolawfoll Ordination, becaufe 
they were not Ordained and placed in yoid places, but intruded into 
Churches that had lawfull Bifhops at the time of thofe pretended Or 
dinations and confequently, did not fucceed but incroach upon o- 
ther mens right. To this we anfwer, that the Church is left void 
either by the death, resignation, deprivation, or the peoples defer- 
tion and forfaking him that did precede : in fome places, our firft Bi 
fhops and Paftors found Churches void by death, in fome by volun 
tary relinquifhment, in fome by deprivation., and in fome by defer- 
tion, in that the people, or at leaft that part of tke people that adhe 
red to the Catholi-que verity who have power to choofe their Paftor, 
to admit the worthy and refufe the unworthy, did forfake the for 
mer that were Wolves and not Paftors, and fubmitted themfelves to 
thofe of a better fpirit. Of the three firft kindes of voidance there can 
be no queftion ; of this fourth there may : and therefore I will prove 
ft by fufficient authority and ftrength of reafon. 

Cjprian, Cecilius, Toljearfws, and other Bifhops writing to the 
Clergy, and people of the Churches in Spain, whereof Bafilides and 
were Biihops, who fell in time of perfecution, denied the 

Faith, and defiled thtrnfelves with idolatry, perfwade them to fepa- 
rate themfelves from thofe Bifhops, afluring them that the people 
being holy, Religious, fearing God, and obeying his Laws/ may 
ami ought to feparate themfelves from impious and wieked Bifhops, 
and not to communicate with them in the matters of Gods fervice, 
^KdoipfaplebsmaximehAbeatfGteftatew, vel eligendi digvos facer- 
. dotes vet indipnos recufandi ; that is, feeing the people have autho- 
rity to chooie the worthy and refufe the unworthy. And Occam to 
die feme purpofe faith on this fort, Si Pafa <& maxime celebres E- 
pifcopi incidAnt in harefin, ad Catholics devt>lntA eft pvtcftds omnisju- 
dicandi; If the Pope and the prineipall Bifhops of the Chriftian 
world do fall to Herefie, the power of all Ecclefia-fticall judgement 
is devolved to the inferiour Clergy and people remaining Ca- 

i This opinion of Cjprian and the reft, if ouradverfaries fhall dif- 
like or except againft, may cafily be con&med by demonftration of 



reafon*. For if it do fall out, that the Bifhops, and a great part oi the 
people fall into Errour, Herefie and Superftition, I think our ad- 
verfaries will not deny, but that the reft are bound to maintain and 
aphold the ancient verity ; who being not fo many, nor fo mighty, 
as to be ai>Je to ejed: thole wicked ones by a formall courie of Judi- 
ciall proceeding, what other thing is there left unto them, but ei 
ther 10 confent to their impieties, which they may not do, or to fe~ 
parate themfelves, which is the thing our adverfaries except again(t 
in the people of our time. Now having feparatcd themfelves from 
their former fuppofed and pretended Paftors, what remaineth, but 
that they make choife of new to be Ordained and fet over them if 
not by the concurrence of fuch and fo many, as the ftriftnefs of the 
Canon doth ordinarily require to concurre in Ordinations, yet by 
fuch as in cafes of neceffity, by all rules of equity are warrranted to 
perform the fame.] Thus far ^ Field. 

I finde tranfcnbing will make thefe Papers more tedious then I 
intended, and therefore I will forbear moft of the reft, which elfe I 
would ad joy n. 

2. The fame Vindication of the Reformed Churches, and the Or 
dination of their Minifters without Bifhops-, you may finde in thac 
Learned Godly man, R.Downame, and that in his very Writings for 
Bifhops, the ftrongeft for Epifcopacy that ever I faw (not excepting 
the late ones) and very paffionate againft the oppofers of Epifco 
pacy. See his Confecr.Serm. and Defence of it, /* . 3 .c .4. fag. 1 08. In 
the laft he writes thus : Out of a Chriftian and charitable delire to 
preferve the credit of fuch Reformed Churches as have no Bifhops, 
I endeavoured to prevent the Objections of Papifts, (mark who are 
the Objeftors) whe reafon thus againft them : The right of Ordina 
tion being peculiar to Bifhops, it followeth, that where is no Bifhop 
there is no Ordination : Where is no Ordination there are no Mini 
fters : Where are no Minifters, there is no Church. I anfwered thac 
although ordinary right of Ordination belongeth to Bifhops in the 
judgement of the ancient Church ; that yet it was not to be under- 
ftood, as fo appropriating it to them, as that extraordinarily, and 
m cafe of neceility it might not be lawfull for Presbyters to Ordain ; 
and much lefs teaching abfolutely a Nullity of the Ordination which 
is performed without a Bifhop, which Anfwer I confirmed by divers 
Reafons ( fee them.) Whereunto I now adde, that there feemeth to 
be the like reafons for the Impoiition of Hands, in Confirmation of 
the baptized, in the reconciliation of publique penitents, as in the 

L 3 Qrdina- 

Ordination of Minifters. But although the two former were refer- 
ved as well as the third to the Bifhop, yet extraordinarily, in the 
cafe of Necefllty, and in the want or abfcence of the Bifhop, the 
ancient Church held it lawful! for Minifters to Impofe hands either 
for the Confirming of parties baptized, or for reconciliation of the 
penitents. The former is teftified by Ambrofe in Eph.q.. & Auguftme 
qtt.ex Vet. & No.Teft. mixt.q.ioi. The later by Cjpriaa, l.$.Ef.ij. 
and divers Councils, Cenc.Carth.gr&c.c.^.Carth^.c^. CQnt.Aranfic. 
c.2. And the Popifh Writers themfelves do teach that the Pope may 
give licenfe to him that is not a Bifhop,to Ordain: fo that he to whom 
fuch licenfe is given, have thofe orders himfelf, which he would 

five to another. Summa Angelic, ordo. .2. If therefore by the Popes 
cenfe a Presbyter may Ordain Presbyters, much better may a com 
pany of Presbyters, to whom in the want of a JBifap the charge of the 
Chttrch is divolved, be authorized thereto by Neceflity,whicfe as they 
fay, hath no Law.] So far B. Downame. 

3 . B. fcwe/l in his Defence of the Apol. ( authorized to be kept in 
all Churches ) Part 2. p. 1 3 1 . [^Neither doth the Church of England 
depend on them whom you fo often call Apoilates, as if our Church 
were no Church without them. They are no Apoftates M r H. &c. 
Notwuhftanding if there were not one, neither of them, nor of us, 
left alive, yet would not therefore the whole Church of England 
flee to Lovaine. Tertullian faith, Nonne & Laid Sacer dotes fumm ? 
Scrotum eft, Regnttm qitoque & Sacerdotts Deo & Patri fuo nos fecit : 
<D iff erentiam inter ordinem & flebem conftituit Ecclefa Authority , 
& honos per ordinis confeffum fanttificatus a Deo. Vbi Ecclejlafttci or- 
dinis non eft C9nfe$us, & offert, & tingit Sacerdos qtti eft ibifoltts. Sed 
& utn tnsfvnt, Ecclefia eft, licet Laici.^ See more of Bifhop Jewels 
minde, Part 3. p. 3 46. &p.2. c.$. Div.$. p. 109,1 10,1 1 1. & c.g.DMf. 
i , and his Serm. on Bag. i . and againft their dodrine of fucceflion, 
p.2.c.$.Divif.i.$&g. (mihi) 127,128,129. Somuchforhim, 

4. Learned SACAVM, de diverf. Afiniftr. gradib. cap.2.pag. 1 0,1 1. 

5. Bifhop Alley in his poor mans Library, Prxlett.6. & Pralett.i* 

6. Bifhop Pilkinton in his Treat, of the burning of Pauls Church, 
andon H^.c.i. i/fr.i 3 2 5 3. to 14. c.2. z .i. to n. and on Abdaat or 
Obadiah ^.7,8. 

7. Bifhop Bridges for Supremacy, ^.3 59, to 364. 

8. Bifhop Bilfon in his Difference between Chriftian fubjed:ion 
and unchriftian Rebellion, ^5403541,542. Part 3. &paffint, pag. 
233,234. 9. Alex. 


9. Alex, Newell Dean of Pauls, in his Reproof of Dormant Proof, 

*i 4 o >4 <7rtfL himfelf in his //. de Imferiofum. poteft. circa far*, cap, 
ji p 336. faith, that by the precept of Gods Law nothing is on ei 
ther fide determined, as tothofe Church-Offices, which iome Re 
formed Churches ufe, and others ufe not. And having laid down 
divers Proportions in favour of Epifcopacy, he addes thefe follow 
ing in favour of Presbytery, as confiftent with the former. 
f rM 354 R*rf*n> t r9 P"ft 6rum *<j**fy*** h<ec frioribns Ufa minime 
M**tU *fferitfr i. Epifcepalem emi*entiam noneffe divinipr^ 
cepti. Probatur koc fatu qtiia non f robatur contrarwm, &c. 2. Non 
plane vniverfaliterobfervatHm, tit cuiquc cwitati unw Epifcopus pr*- 
tlTef dnemponbusidjamfrobMttmarbitramfir* poftea qmque f*pe 
plxres in ma urle Epifcefi imitation Jxd&orum, qm qmt ******** Jj~ 
WtW> tctidem Archifjnagegos : Mult* autemix una f*ft urh fy**~ 
e^/(markthat) ant (ut Phih etiam atfellat) w^^: *ndt l llud 
fxfatjr*, In q** u q**ro profwcha, &c. p. 3 5 7- t* <> **i C*- 
tbedr* EpifcoPAles multi* in vrbibw fepc non wtfa tatum aUqvot, 
fed & Per a-nnos etiam wnltos <vacavere ; quo emm temfore Ecclefet, ut 


wmtronjmo e, 

nabantur, out u* &^l<^ 

^ rn iww. Et pag. 358. ^tanquam Mem ex hcrum fatrtimfententia, 
Prefiyte adimimr erdinandijw, qmd ipfum mnlti* in Sjnodx con- 
flititttw<v>derieft , gmdtamen obftat 3*0 minm id ita interpret tmttr 
ut Preflyteri neminemfotuerint ordinare contcmfto Epijcofo ? Vna cum 
Epifcopoconcurrtfe ahqmtenm Vrejbyteros adordinationemdccere w- 
detur Synod. 4. Carthat&c. Illtid interea non video qwmodo refelk 
pcfa, MErfcopmnfuntsuam* Prefyteroretli fieri ordinattonw : 
Cum hoc ipfnm inter fcholtfticosMtijwdorerfs j*m pndew concept. 
mmirumea^ Xl*& c*fa obfervantur, exceptions fu* kabent. 
Qymofon vtttri Concilio Cartbag.w c**fa necejjitatu Prefyterx con*- 
^ditnr reconciliare panitentes : &> alibi mann* imponer, baptizatx. 
Dem tit far* diximns, dMum an Epifcopv, anPrtpjtcra msru,, 
propriores fmt Pr^yteri , i*i nee fnb fe Prtfyteros \ w ^ r* 
Ce Epifcopum h*h*t. Nam & de Tin?ot^o ita rgume>>t^r 4m>r, 
&i I" &iantefe alterum non kabebat, ^Icopm emi. N 
(nt e ^blica, fumamm exempt.) Mult* fae*t. fe**t*i 
bfanti v>*fi*t*i f*b Rege con/lit utv *W l< 

3- oc <cramts* : >kw1 
EffcofAttu certe * ? . 

retttr. I. IPenuria virortim, &c. 2. CVf#/i #//# confilii effe potuit 
longaatque inveterata jam flan} Epifcopal^ officii depravatio : (Vide 
ultrt*. ) At profifto nunqttam tantos ah Apoftolorum <t>vo ad ilia tempora, 
froceflwambitio Ecclejiaftica fecerat, quantum ab iftu feculi* ad pz- 
trumnoftrorummemoriam, utjamnifi abfciffaparte caufaria, work us 
vixfanaripoffe videatur, &c. htid quod & nomen & eminent Epi- 
fcopa/M corum cul$a quibus obtigerat, oftwemfui reverentiam perdiderat 
& in odium venerat p let? is, cui e tiam e rranti inter hum mos eft gerendus? 
3 . Cattfa addipoteft, quod infeftijfimij temporihwjnagiftri writ at i* nc- 
mine, invifa non cttlpam tantum ambitionis, fed & fufticionem omnem 
amoliri debfterant ; quod cum fublata Epifcopali dignitate follicite 
curaverint, nejic qttidem tamen calumniam effugerunt : ^nid non au 
dit tin, fidottrina mtttatio conjuntta fttiffet cum major is gradm adepti- 
cne ? Adjiciam mam infuper caufam cur initio repurgationis non admo- 
dum neceff arias fuerit Epifcopatits. Excitarat Dens prtft antes viros, 
fttmmo ingenio, fumma eruditione, me minors tarn apudfuos, qttam apttd 
vicims authoritat e pollentes, pancos qtiidem nttmero, fed qtii plurimis 
negotii* fvftinendx pares efient : horum fumma apud omnes exiftimatio, 
facile fttpplevit quod ab Epifcopatu deer at. Et (ft cum Zanchio verum 
volumu* agnofcere ) reipfa twill magis Epifcopifuere, quam illi ipfe 
quorum ( quamvis hoc non agentium ) authority ad oppugnandum., 
ufque Epifcopatum valmt&c.^ Et ^367. \_Exercitium ergoclavi- 
nm, &JKS abfolvendi penitentes ex omnium patrum fententiafoli* com- 
fetunt Sacerdotibut, hoc eft, Frefbjteri* verbi & Sacramentorum de- 
fojitarii*r\ Yea in favour of Lay-Elders he aflferteth ( having argued 
them not to be of Divine Inftitution, yet) i. That they may be law 
fully inftituted by Soveraigns, or by the Church on their permi ffion. 
2. That it may be proved by Scripture that this Inftitution is noc 
difpleafmg to God. 3 . That there are exa mples in pious Antiquity, 
either of this fame way, or one very near it. 4. That it is no con 
temptible benefit, that by thefe Elders may be received. But thefe 
to exercife their Office with feveral cautions : i. Not claiming In 
ftitution by Divine precept. 2. Not ufurping any of the power of 
the Keyes, nor of Excommunication, further then Excommunica 
tion belongeth to the people (executively.) 3 . That the men be not 
unmeet. 4.Exercifmg no externail Jurifdidion but by publique I aw. 
5. Standing as mutable. Thus far Grotitu. 

To all thefe let me adde two Epifcopal Gentlemen, that you may 
fee the difference between Epifcopal Proccftants and Bpifcopal fecrec 
Caflandrian Papifts, 


The eleventh (hall be M f Chifenha/l a. Gentleman chat lately an* 
fwered D r fane (a Chaplain of the Kings lately turned Papift.) That 
he is no friend to Presbytery you may be out of doubt by his whole 
Bo<?>k ; and in particular by thefe difcreet gentle terms which he gives 
to the Presbyterian Church of Geneva, pag.iz. [[Such an up&art 
youngling, thatwind-eggeof a tumult, which being bradderred un 
der a Toad of France* is become a flaring Cockatrice, and thinks to 
center the world within the compafs of his contagious den, darting 
poyfon upon whom he firft efpies : as experience eels us how he 
glancing upon the poor Scot, has given him fuch a deadly wound 
that he will fcarce ever recover it, eh:.] Is not this Gentleman zea 
lous enough againft Presbytery ? But yet he is no Papift : ^Pag. 129. 
he faith Qlc is not abiblutely necelTary that Bifhops Ordain Btlhops. 
For what if all the Biihops fhould dye fo near at one time, that none 
were left Ordained by them ? Shall not the Presbytery make Bifhops? 
They have Right to the Keyes ; which are called C laves Eccleji#,non 
Epifcoforwn : and they are the remaining Pillars of the Church, and 
certainly may Confer the Order of Bifhop on others ; and that the 
rather becaufe the Councils forbid Bifhops of another Province to 
Ordain, in a Forreign Province. And though it may feem ftrange to 
fome that Minifters which are fubordinate fhould Ordain Bifhops, 
andfo conferre Superiour Orders- it is not ( if rightly examined ) 
contradictory to Reafon : For in this firft Ordination of Priefts 
and Deacons , they are infra Ordines majores, which Orders are 
called Holy and Sacramental!, and are the higheft Orders : Wit- 
nefs Pope Vrbun Dec. Dift.6o. fum.fac. Ro.Ecclef.226. As for the 
Order of Biihops it is no more then a Pricft as to the Holy and Sacra- 
mentall Order only : More excellent in refpect of the order of Go 
vernment, which it rather of humane then Divine Right : For as it is 
Divine it xno more then V?hat~ every Pr if ft hath by the Sacrament all 
Order : but as it M humane It is tranfcendent in relation to T)ifc inline : 
and therefore the Presbytery may agree to Ordain one over them to 
Govern them in Ecclefiaftical Rites, as the people may choofe a 
Prince to Govern in Civil affairs. Hence it was that the ApouMes fent 
John to EfhefM&c.~\ So far M Chifenhall. 

1 2. I will adde alib the Lord Digbfs words in that notable Judi 
cious Letter to S r K. Digby, pag.i 18. He that would reduce the 
Church now to the form of Government in the moft Primitive times, 
fhould not take, in my opinion, the beft nor wifeft courfe ; I am fure 
not the fafeft:For he would be found pecking towards the Presbytery 

M " of 

ef Scotland; which, for my part, I believe in point of Government 
hath a greater refemblance then either yours or ours, to the firft age 
of Chrifts Church, and yet is never a whit the better for it fince it 
was a form not chofen for the beft, but impofed by adverfity and 
opprefTion ; which in the beginning forc t the Church from what it 
wifht, to what it might; not fuffering that dignity and ftate Eccle- 
fiafticall, which rightly beJongM unto it, to manifeft it felf to the 
world: and which foon afterwards upon the leaft lucida intervalU 
fhone forth fo gloriouily in the happier, as well as more Monar- 
chicall condition of Epifcopacy : of which way of Government I am 
fo well perfwaded,that I think it pity, it was not made betimes an Ar 
ticle of the Sccttlfh Catechifm, that Bifhops are fure Dizino. But as 
it is a true Maxime in nature, Corntptio o ptmipe/iwa, fo it holds 
likewife in Government both Civil and Ecciefiafticall,c^r.] So far 
the Lord Digfy : Whofe words I recite not for his Judgement againft 
the Antiquity of Epifcopacy ( for I now difclaim diiputingon that 
point :) but a majors, if Presbytery be likeft to the Primitive Govern 
ment, then at leaft thofe may be now true Churches that are without 
Epifcopacy,and thofe true Miniiters that are Ordained without them, 
and true Ordinances that are adminiftrcd by fuch Presbyters. 

Nor do I take the L. Digbfs Reafon for mens varying of Primitive 
forms oTGovernment to be of lolidity or fafety. Nor do I aliedge 
anyofthefe fore-mentioned Autbours as being of their opinion in 
the whole, nor as if they were with me of the higheft Authority. But 
to evince the full conferit of the Epifcopall party of Proteftants, cal 
ling themfelves The Church of England - y to be downright for the 
Truth of Miniftery and Ordinances where there is no Epifcopacy ,nor 
Ordination by any but meer Presbyters : And to fhew you that 
Rome hath alway argued for the contrary, and ufed the fame Obje 
ctions, which I am now anfwering, and that I anfwer now but on the 
grounds of the Epifcopal Proteftants. 

13. The Judgement of Learned BP Dave.nant you may fee in his 
Determ. ^.42. ^.191,192. approving of the Ordination of Pres 
byters in cafe of Neceflity , and in fpeciall when Bifhops fall into 
herefies, and refufe to ordain Orthodox Paftors, but will ordain only 
fuch as will partake with them in their faction and errour ; or when 
they turn combined Enemies to the truth : And hereupon he vindi 
cates the Forreign Churches Ordinations without Biftiops. 

14. D r Prtdeaitx our laft BP of Wore eft ?r in F^fcic. Cont. de difcipL 
Eccltfl f.ZdrQ.. faith, Presbjterttm Presbjtercs ordinarc pcffe-j prefer- 


tun deficientibtu Efifcofit, concedit cum mttgiftro fententiarum fanior 
pars Sc holafticorttm utpatet ad fent. 7.4. ^ift. 25. 2. EfifcofattcrrL* 
retinent tales Ecclefia (vi^. tranfmarinx ) licet non per manum uniut 
tJ^Conarchice , fed Ariftocratice per multos adminiftrattim. 3 . Afodera- 
tores & fuperintendentes ipforttm analogic efmt apttdipjos JEpifcopi, & 
author it ate (ut contendunt] ordinandi pottent cnm jratrihns J And Or at. 
8. de vocat* Miniflr. $.77. he faith, chat thofe that were baptized of 
Hereticks themfelves are truly baptized, and thofe that are ordained 
by them are truly ordained.] 

15. BP Andrevps aifo (as I remember, for I have not the Book 
now by me ) in his Epiftles to Mzlinaus, goes the fame way. 

1 6. See alfo how dire ftiy our Obj edors imitate the Jefuite that 
difputeth agamft D r Potter, Chap.6. 20. 21. 22. 23. And fee Chil 
ling-worths full Anfwer to him, too long to tranfcribe ; Some of his 
Queftions are thefe, fag. 3 60. Q Whether all thofe Proteftants that 
conceive the diftindion between Priefts and Bifhops, not to be of di 
vine Inftitution, be fchifmaticall and hereticall for thinking fo ? Whe 
ther your form of ordaining Bifhops and Priefts be eflential to a true 
Church ? &c. Whether in faying that the true Church cannot fub- 
fift without undoubted true Bifhops and Priefts, you have not over 
thrown the truth of your own Church ? Wherein I have proved it 
plainly Impoffible, that any man fhould be fo much as morally cer 
tain either of his own Priefthood, or any other mans ? Laftly, Whe 
ther any one ktnde of thefe external Forms and Orders and Govern 
ment, be fo neceffary to the being of a Church, but that they may 
not be divers in divers places? and that a good and peaceable Chri- 
ftian may and ought to fubmit himfelf to the Government of the place 
where he lives, whatfoever he be ? e^c.] 

Much more might be added out of many Authors to prove that 
the Doctrine of the old Epifcopall Proteftants is not contradicted 
by any thing in our Agreement, but by the Objectors is diredly 

But I know feme will marvell that I beftow fo many words in fo 
plain a cafe, and trouble the Reader and my felf with fuch frivolous 
Objections, which deferve not a ferious Anfwer (for fome have told 
me all this) But they muft know that I have Reafons of weight for 
what I do. They are men of no contemptible Parts, though of Po- 
ptfh inclinations that manage thefe Objections, and make a great 
matter of them and they are many of them well-meaning men, and 
of no contemptible Underftandings, who through accidental advan- 

M z tages, 

rages, are taken with them, And if liberty of Sects and Separations i 
be publiquely granted and confirmed to all, you (hall foon iinde that 
the Party that I am dealing with, will foon by their numbers ob- 
fcure all other Parties that now trouble our Peace ( except the 

Having therefore (hewed that the Confent of Proteftant Bifhops 
is againft them, I will give you fome further difcovery of their de- 
fignes only adding here that faying of A&tiftultto ( not as his, but 
becaufe ) cited by Grotitts, de Imferio fum. poteft, e. i o.pag. 3 22,323 . 
^_Pafl(jrem Ckriflianum de Vocations fust (ollicitum effe non debere, neque 
ambigere qtiin Chriftiana ac legitimafit fa a Vtcatio ubi ad Evangelium 
yr&dicandttm a fio JWaffiftratu aut Principe -vac at us eft*~\ Though I 
Know this fpeech muft be underftood cttmgrano /#/, iome other re- 
quifites being here fuppofed as implied. 

1 3 . It may eafily appear whether the Objectors be greater friends 
to Rome , then to our old Epifcopali Divines, by the tendency of their 
prefent plot : For they would have all the people take us for no Mi- 
nifters, and our Churches for no Churches, and fo all Gods wor(hip 
be negleded in publique where no Bifhops or their Miflionaries are. 
And fo when all others are difTeifed and turned out, the Papifts may 
freely enter, there being none but thefe few faithful! friends of their 
own to keep them out, which how well they will do you may by thefe 

1 4. The Objectors do openly back the Papifts in the Argument of 
fucceffion as a proper note of a true Church, againft the ftreain of 
Proteftants that have fully confuted them, both Biftiops and others. 
}t were in vain for me to fall on this difpute with thefe Doctors, as 
long as fo many Volumes againft Bellarmine are unanfwered. Z) r Sut- 
live faith, In externa face ejfi one qua-m & kreticif#])ek>abent& 0?- 
thodoxiNon habent, mkil ift wowenti, lib. de Ecclef. cap. i8./o/.i23. 
pag.2. Reade more largely BP Jeive II Defence of the Apol. par. 2. pag. 
1 3 1,1 32- and in other places. But it were endleffe to cite ail that joyn 
with us in this againft the Popi(h necefllty of fucceffion : and it is 
needlefle as to thofe that have read the writings of our Engliih Bi 
fhops and other Divines, who muft needs know already how folly 
they fpeak to this point. 

15. But it is a higher charge then Popery,, that thefe Epifcopali 
Doctors that I now fpeak of, are liable to: For my part, 1 fee not 
how they can be excufed from unchurching, if not unchriftianing all 
the people of Chnft on the whole earth ; or at leaft leaving it utter- 

Jy uncertain, whether Chrift hath ever a; Church, or ever 
Chriftian on the earth ? For according to then), no.Churchisatrue 
Church without Mmifters ( and it is true of an organized political 
Chnrcb,) and no man is a Minifter that is not Ordained by a Bifhop, 
becaufe meer Presbyters have no Power to Ordain ; and no man is a 
Bifliop that is not Ordained by a Biftiop and this muft be a true Bi- 
fhop, lawfully called, and not deprived again of his power and 
this mtift Be Ordained by a former Bifhop, and he by a former, and 
fo the fuccefiion mull be followed to the Apoftles. Now I would de- 
fire thefe feekers (for fuch they are) to refolve me thefe few doubts, 

1. Can all the poor Chriftians in our Churches in faith fubmit to 
your own Miniftry, or to any other mans on earth, as being true 
Minifters of Chrift Authorized to Baptize, Adminifter the Supper, 
Guide the Church ? &c. Can they know that the line of your iuc- 
ceffion hath been uninterrupted from the Apoftles daies till now ? 

2. Nay, can your felvesor any the learned ft Cardinals at fame,- 
or Bi&ops on earth know r that your fuccefiions have not been inter 
rupted ? Is Church-Hiftory fo clear, full and infallible in this? Sup- 
pofe that by the advantage of the enunency of Rene (being the Im 
perial Seat, and fo populous) that they could have fuch a Certainty 
ofHiftory, Hath every true Church or Bifhop or Presbyter in the. 
world fo too ? If fo,I confefs Hiftorians have plaid their parts better^, 
both for fulnefs and faithfulnefs, then ever I dreamed of. 

3 . Do you not deferve ill at the hands of all Gods Churches, and 
God hinilelf, to bring all poor chriftians to fuch an uncertainty as 
this, whether they have true Baptifm, Miniftry , Worfhip, er. and 
to leave all Minifters at fuch a lols that no one man on earth ( much 
lefsali) can ad in Faith ? How dare they adventure on a Calling. 
which no man living can affure them that they are lawfully called to ? 
and how fhould they comfortably go on in the works of it? 

4. Muft not all theie following things concurre before you can. 
know that you area Minifter on your own grounds ? i. You rnuft: 
be fure that lie that- Ordained you,w as Ordained himfelf by a Bifhop. 
2. You miift be fure that this Bifhops own Ordination was fuch as was 
not void by the Canon : (chat is,that it had not as great a defect as the 
Ordination of meer Presbyters which you fay is Null.) And here what 
a lofs are you at when forae Councils allow that which another con 
demns : Some do make Null thofe Ordinations which others allow 
of. Particularly, you muff be fure that he came not in by Simony (a 
hard matter:) that he was not a Heretick, or erroneous intheFun- 



damentals : that he was not Ordained by a Biftiop without the reach 
of his own Juri&idion (elfe many Canons Null it: ) that he was 
not a man through ignorance or wickednefs utterly uncapable of the 
Office : that he was chofen by the Clergy over whom he was to be 
Bifhop (and not only by a Chapter or the King :) Yea that the peo 
ple themfelves had their voices in the Eledion, or were called to 
Confent ( according to Gjprian and the elder times ;) and that the 
people be prefent, and have liberty to make their exceptions, accor 
ding to later times : with many the like. 3. You mult be certain 
that all the Bifhops fucceflively from the Apoftles times, by whom 
you draw your claim, were thus Ordained : For one Nullity breaks 
the whole chain, and nulleth all that follow, as you fuppofe. 4. You 
muft be fure that never a one of all thefe Bifhops did lofe his power 
again by Herefie, wickednefs or other means, before he Ordained the 
next. 5. You muft be certain that the Bifhop had intentionem Ordinandi 
(if you be right Papifts indeed.) 6. You muft know who was the 
Apoftle that was the root of your own fucceffion ; which is a great 
er matter then to know what Apoftle did firft convert the Nation. 
SeeB.fl/7;-Anddo you indeed know all thefe things? Is it indeed fo certain 
ers Brit, whether it were fofeph oft^friMathea, or Simon Zelotes, or any fuch 
ma n, tnat fi r ft con y er ted England ? Nay do you know the Names 
y 0ur p rec [ ece fl* ors before the time tf itAuguftine the Monk ? And 
if y OU ] inow noc wno the men were, much lefsdo you know that 
they were every man of them truly Ordained. If you have curranter 
Hittory of thefe things then is yet openly known, why do you not " 
produce it ? When the very general Queftion, Whether Riihops 
were put in the places of the Flamins, and Archflamins, is fo uncer 
tainly determined by Hiftory, that about thirty Hiftonans affirm it, 
and yet Bifhop Vfoer, Jewell, Godwin, D r Suttliffe, S r H. Sfelman, 
deny it : I think waking men will hardly affirm a Certainty of any 
Hiftory of their own fucceilion by an uninterrupted feries of truly 
Ordained lawfull Biftiops to the Apoftle that Ordained the firft Bi- 
fhop. Nay it s well known, that a great part of the Chnftian world 
is Uncertain what particular Apoftle did firft convert their particu 
lar Countries : which yet were it known, would go but a little way 
toward the refolving our doubt. 

But perhaps fome will fay, It is not neceflary that I prove my 
fucceflion let others difprove it that queftion it. I anfwer, i . That 
Argument may ferve to (top the mouth of fome biifie Queftionifts; 
it may have fome force ; But will that ferve 


before God> Either yo-H are a true Paftor or not. If yon are not, it 
is not the difficulty of difcovery or of eviction that will make you 
one : If all the Baptifm, and other Minifterial ads that you have 
performed, are Null, it is not mens inability to prove them Null, 
that will make them Valid. 2. That fhould, methmks, be but fmail 
fatisfadion to your own Conference neither: For Confcience will 
exped that you prove your Authority, and not only that others 
cannot difprove it. For it is Gods judgement and not mans ? to which 
you muft ftand or fall. And therefore Confcience muft needs put 
you to refolve this Queftion, How know you that you are a true 
Minifter ? and fo, How know you that your fucce/Iion hath been 
uninterrupted, from an Apoftle, in point of lawful! Ordination ? 
3. But if you think it be enough to Confcience, that you know 
nothing to the contrary ; or that you thinly you have an uninter 
rupted fucceillon ; then why may not this ferve turn as well for 
others? Thofe that think Bifhops to be a humane Inftitution and 
unlawrull, do think themfelves more rightly Ordained then you; 
and therefore \Sthinking will ferve turn, why may it not ferve their 
turn? 4. And for our people, if it be enough to fatisfie their Con- 
fciences that Sacraments and other our Minifterial Adminiftrations 
are no Nullities, becaufe they think fo, or becaufe they cannot dif 
prove our claim, then why nuift they not on that ground fubmit to 
them that were Ordained without Bifhops, when they carfhot dif 
prove their claim ? 5. Nay why (hotild people trouble themfelves to 
know whether men be Ordained at all or no > When Thinking muft 
and will ferve r.-rn, and a true difcovery is impoffible. For though 
you cn.n (hew your Orders, yet you cannot fhew all the fucceilion of 
Orders rom the Apoftle to your Ordainer. I think that man that 
dare affirm that any one Paftor on earth can know that he is a true 
Paftor, (<>, fticcedion of right Ordination uninterrupted be necefifa- 
ryto it and if want of that make the Ordination a Nullity,) isfick 
of the difeafe that Fcftm fufpeded in Paul, and is elevated fo farre oa 
the wings of Pride and Learning 3 that he is quite overgone Humility 

5. But yet this is not all Do not thefe mens grounds leave it cer 
tain,, that Chnft hath no true Church or Miniftry, or Ordinances, or 
Baptized Chnftians in England, nay in all the Weftern Chiirche^ 
and perhaps not in the whole worlds And then fee whether thefe 
Popiih Divines muft not prove Seekers. 
\\ For the Greek Church it is "well known how oft the fucceiljOn of 


their Patriarch hath been interrupted, as to right Ordination ; thofe 

being chruft in chat had no call thereto : and fo all the Ordinations 

that did flow down from them flinft needs be Null. And there is as 

little probability of an uninterrupted iucceilion or right Ordination 

in the /Ethiopian Churches, and chafe icactered rude Chriftians in 

tsEgyft, Paleft.ine, &c. Itellarmine faith (de Not is Ecclef. L^cap.% 

p. (imihi) 312. Non pojje cftendi in EccleJiaGr&ca certam fuccejfio- 

nem : filam i. Vatttttr Catviniu in Aiia, ,gypto & proinde Anti- 

ochi^HierofolynLT, & Alexandria: interrupt am fuiffe fuccejfionem 

fc/a con-fiat Conitantmopolitana EccleJiafrc.At Conttantinopoikana 

gcclefia non eft Afrftvlic^nec oftendit certam originem ah j4pcftGlts > &:c.~] 

)ucd aitteiti apt* 4 GTACOS non jit Scciepa^rubamMA alto modo <juia nimi- 

rmn ccnviiiljttnt lefrltime iritribus plenariu conciliis, LateranenfijL-ttg- 

.dtinenfi>&. Florentine* de Jckifwate at hxrefi ac pr<ecip%e de h&refi circa, 

procejjionem Spirits SanEli a Filio^c. Adde ultimo omnes Eccleji* 

ille L ~P at riarc hales, habuerunt per lunga tempora Epifcopos mamfeftos k& 

j"eticos,& froinde interrupt a eft veterum Paftorum fucceffio.~\ 

And ot the adherents to the Pope in Africa, znd&4jia he faith, 
l^Nctf pofle qui&em cftendere fttccejjionem.continuam EpifcoportimfuGritm 
particularism, fed poffe oftendere fucceffionem continuam Epifcoporttrv 
Mniverftiliu m, qtd fttnt Rcmani pifcopi, quibus i/li ftibjechs fc efje 
fatentur.~\ -So that you fee in Bellarmines Judgement what cafe the 
reft of the world is in, except the Romanifts. And yet the fucceflive 
right Ordination is a matter of more apparent impoflibility to be pro 
ved, then the fuceiiion that Bellarmine fpeaks of. 

Let us therefore come neerer home and fee, Whether it.be not 
Certain beyond all doubt, upon the grounds oi" Bellarmine and our 
Popifh Do ctors, that there is no true Church, Miniftry or Minifte- 
rialadminiftration.s, in this Weitern part of the world? To begin 
at home, it ismoft certain, i. That according to many ancient Ca 
nons ( which are their Laws ) our Engliih Bifhops of lateft times 
were uncapable of ordaining ; For they lofi their Authority, by in 
volving shemfelves in fecular and publiqne adminiftrations, Camn 
AfoftSo. For negled of intruding their Flocks ( moft or many of 
them ) Can. Apofl.^i. and many more : For 0#-refidence : For un- 
juft filencing and Rifpending Mmiiters, and deftroying the Preaching 
of the word, fuppreffing Learned able Teachers, and maintaining 
or permitting multitudes of lilly fouls that could but read and mul 
titudes of drunken wicked fevers. How many Canons do depofe Bi 
fhops for thefe ! Yet I know we had fome very Learned,Pious 5 Reve- 


(6 9 ) 

rend men. 2. But then even thefc with til the rtft Were Ordained 
by fuch as hatd no Authority (according to the dodrine of thefe Ob- 
je&ors confequentially) For the Popim BKhops wi;0 Ordamea in 
the dales ofHen.S.H.j. and many Ages before ? had no power of Or 
dination. This I prove in that they received their Ordination from 
the Pope, who had no Authority co Ordain them. To fay that Eng 
land had Bifhops before Angftine, is nothing to the bufmefs oif 
Ordination, as long as it is undeniable that the Englifo Bifhops and 
Clergy did enftave themfeives to the Pope, and profefs their fubje- 
dion to him, and to receive and bold their Authority from him. S<* 
that if the Pope had no Power to give Orders, then they were no 
Bifhops (according to the Objedors rule.) Now that the Pope hatk 
no Authority to Ordain,ihali be made evident ; by (hewing that the 
fuccellion of lawfull Bilhops hath been interrupted at Rome, and fo 
none fmce (on their own grounds ) can be a true Bifhop. i . I will 
not undertake to maintain that the Pope is Anticbrift, profeiiing 
my weaknefs and ignorance of thofe Prophetical] Scriptures, to be fo> 
grcat,that I dare not be confident in ray interpretations of thenrJ But 
yet our English Proteftant Bifhops have commonly been confident 
of it, and maintained ic : and Bifhop Downtimes Book ds Antichrifto, 
deferves conlideration : and if that hold then the cafe is clear. 2.But 
however,thac it is certain that multitudes of Popes have been fuch as 
were utterly uncapable of theOffice of a Biihopjand power of making 
Bilhops,is evident to any that hath read/***// Epiftles to Timothy and 
Titut, and the old Canons and the Hiftories of the Popes lives. Pope 
Ltberius fubfcribed to the Arians ConfelTion in the Council of Sir- 
mitim [Libenu animofufcefi in nulio contradict ns~] and to that Coun 
cils condemnation of Atkanafiw. Vid. Binnium Tom. i. Cone. part, r, 
^.470,480,422. c^ Baron, anno 157, . 9. & 344. .3,4,5. tf-Bd-t 
larm./.4- de Tontif.c.p. Pope Honoriw in two General Councils wa$ 
condemned for a Herctick, F/d.Bin. Conc.<$, Oecum. VQ$Z Stephen 6. 
and Scrgius i . did judge Pope formofm uncapable of Ordaining, 
when they Decreed that thefe whom he Ordained, (hould be Or 
dained again. Vid. Sigebert. Ckrw. ^.74. a*#o 902. Reade but what 
P latin* lakh of them in Fit. Greg.j. Vrban.j. Alexznd.-$. Alex.6. 
fchn 13. Joh.22& 23. Some were So.rcerers, fome Idolaters, fome 
jefted at Chriftianity it felf j fome Arians, Netf orians, Monothelites, 
Montanifts, denied the fouls immortality : befides their infamous 
Whoredoms, Tyranny, Murders, Poyfoning their PredecWors, 
Buying the Popedom, &c. But I had rather give you this m other 


inen$ wards, asbythem applied to the Argument in hand. Bifhop 
^/R^^pij^^ [Itruft you 

will not think it ill if I a little touch the like in the Bifhops of 
Rome, that thereby we may be the better able to fee fome of the 
branches of your fucccflion : Therefore fhortly to fay, you know 
th?j Pope Marccttinus committed Idolatry : that Pope St/veft. 2. was 
a Conjurer, and gave himfelf whole body and foul to the Devil and 
by the Devils procurement was made Pope: That Pope Zbftk&fet 
ambition and claim of Government corrupted the holy Council of 
Nice : That Pope Liberia was an Arian heretick : That Pope Leo, 
as appeareth by the Legend, was alfo an Arian : That Pope Celeftine 
was a Neftorian heretick : Pope Honorim*. Monothelite heretick : 
Pope John 22. was reproved by Gerfon and the School of T>aru for 
an heretick, &c. And to leave Dame foane,&c.. This is M r H. s holy 
fuccefiion ! Though faith fail, yet fucceffion muft hold : For unto 
fuch fucceilion God hath bound the holy Ghoft. For lack of this 
fucceflion, for that in our Sees in the Churches of .E;*/^ we finde 
not.fo many Idolaters, Necromancers, Hereticks, Advouterers 
Church-robbers^ Perjured perfons, Mankiliers,Renegates,Monfters 5 
Scribes and Pharifees, as we may eafily finde in the Church of Rowe\ 
therefore I trow M r H. faith, we have no fucceflion, no Bifhops, 
we have no Church at all. But S c Paul faith Faith cometh (not by 
fucceffipn, but ) by hearing, and hearing cometh ( not of Legacy or 
Inheritance from Biihop to Bi(hop, but) of the Word of God 1 So 
far foe/I.. 

That truly Noble Lord *Du Plejfu faith, in Treat, of the Ch. c. 1 1. 
/L362.&C. [^Examining the Eledion of the Bifhops of the Romifh 
0iurch y amanfbali hardly finde one that may be called a Bifhop 
that can hold proof againft the Canons Apoftolicall or Ecclefiafticall 
either in that which c@ncerneth lawfull Calling or the due exercife of 
it: Not of Calling ; for where is theEledion, or the Examination 
of life and of maners ? Where is not (contrariwife) either only fa 
vour, or meer Simony ? and yet the Canons are plain That fuch 
Jnftitutions of Bifhops are void of themfelves, and all thofe likewife 
void that they beftow upon others.] And, I pray you, when Pope 
Etigeni^^ is depofed by the Oecumenicall Council of Bajill, and 
pronounced a Heretick and Schifmatick, and all his adherents like 
wife, and yet retainech the Fapali Authority againft the Judgement 
of that Council,; where are the Cardinals and Bifhops communica 
ting with one excornmunicaced>. mftituted by one deftituted, receU 


ving of him who was deprived of his Galling, a Galling which he 
could not give? and transfufing ic toothers, which coiifequently 
could not have it themfelves. And where is there then ( according 
to their Canons, and according to their own Decrees) ib much as 
oneBilhop, oronePrieft, fince all that time, &c. Not the BiChop 
of Rome himfelf created by the creatures of Eugenius, or by thofe 
whom from time to time they have created : feeing the Law tels us, 
that ^uodinitio vitiofttm eft, non poteft trattu tewporis convalefcere,&c* 
(fee further.) So far Du T>leffis. 

Nay were there nothing againft the Bilhops of Rome but their 
claiming the Tide of Univerfall Bilhops, their own Pope Gregory will 
pronounce (Epift. 80.^ that it is no other thing then to fall from 
the Faith: and (Eprft.iSS.) itisApoftacy. and (Ep. 78.) itpor- 
tendeth Antichrift : (yea furpafleth his pride, ^.80.) 

Reade D r Tridcaux Left. n. de Antichrift o 3 &9 And Sutlive 


And whether the Reign of Pope fobft be of no truth, or force to 
interrupt the fucceffion, let it reft on the credit of that great number 
of Htftorians that report it. 

If any man will fay, that the Ordination of fuch as thefe foremen- 
tioned Popes, is of more validity then of an Affembly of the moft 
Learned Godly Presbyters, I think them not worthy any further 
confutation : Yet I defire them to regard thefe following words of 
Learned D r Hammnd in his Defence of the Lord Falkland; pag.64. 

gask you whether it be not true what his Lordftiip faith, that a Pope 
ofen by Simony, is ipfofafto no Pope ? You (durft not I conceive, 
becaufe you) did not before deny it : and if now you will take more 
courage, let your minde be known, and we (hall not doubt to bring 
as Claifick Authors as your felves againft you. If it be true, then is 
your anfwer of no validity, becaufe of no truth : For either that in 
fallibility, or what ever, other power, muft be annexed to him as a 
man ( which he may be indeed though he be not Pope ) or under 
fome other relation, which infallibly belongs to him ( neither of 
which I conceive you will affirm, for then ten thoufand to one, fome 
oiher will communicate with him in that claim ) or elfe he muft be 
Pope, when he is ipfofatto no Pope ; or elfe that power miift be an- 
next to him by fome body that may think him Pope, when he is not, 
and then either God muft run the Errour, or that power be given 
him from fome others. For that God fhould know him ta be no 
Pope, and yet give that power of Infallibility to him (for if you. 

N 2 fpeak 

Ipeak of any other Power it is not pertinent)as long as he is peaceably 
received, niuft firft conclude that a No-Pope may be Infallible. And 
fccondly, that whofoever is fo received by the Church, is fo : which 
ianleis there be ibme promife of Gods to afTure me that he hath pro- 
railed it to the Churches biinde reception, will for ought I yet fee, 
conclude again, tliat either tKe C&*/> or the peoples errour gives 
him that prerogative.] Apply this reaibn to their Ordination, and 
you need no more in zuifwer to your Objedion.See further J>. - 

So that it is too evident, not only that there is no certainty to be 
had in fat Reman Church (and confequenclym any that received 
their power from them ) that there is any one crue Bilhop, Pallor or 
Minifteriall Adminiltration, if fucceftion of Jawfull Ordination be 
ncceffary to the Being of thefe, but alfo it is certain that there is no 
Biihop or Miniftry, andfo no Church and Ordinances ; which is a 
Conciufion fo notorioufly falfe and abominable, that we may know 
what :o judge of the premifes whence it is inferred. 

By this time therefore I hope it is apparent that our Minifters Cal 
ling is not therefore Null, becaufe they are Ordained by meer Pref- 
byters. And that they that would by fuch atfcufations entice people 
from their Paftors to Rome, if they follow on the work according to 
their Principles, muft bring them at latf to be of no Church. Adde 
to this what I have faid in the Preface to the fecOnd Part :of my Book 
of Reft, and you will fee that at long running the.Principles of Popery 
do leade to flat Infidelity. 

Bellarmine confefleth (Li.de Ecclef.c.io.) that Q Non hakemus 
cmitudincm nifi Moralem* quod iftifint Ven EpifcepL~] ( He was Joth 
to fpeak out and fay the plain truth, that we can have no proper Mo 
ral! Certainty at all, no nor probability.) But what then muft f&lve 
this fore ? why we may know that [AliqHifaltcmfunt Yen : stlioqHi 
Dens Ecc/ejjat* defer tiiet.~\ True : but therefore it follows that a 
fucccilion of right Ordination ( as you maintain) is not necefTary to 
fuch a knowledge. And then how (hall it be known by the Lords 
flock which be thefe true Paftors ? Why he tels us [jCerti famxs cer- 
littdine ixfa/liMi, ejuodifti quos viAemtu pxtVerl Epifcopi & Pafto- 
res noftri : Nam ad hoc non reqninttir, nee fides, nee c^raher Ordini*, 
me legitima elettio, fed folum ut habeantar pr& taUbtu ab Eccleftar\ I 
pray you mark that all this is but ^rW Chrijti locum tenent, & qnod, 
ill* Obediextiam: But for this fecond [_ gutdkaktnt p&K- 
ini* & faifdittionii} poor Bettarmiw leaves the- Chriftiari 



world at a lois ; as if it were a thing not to be knows. 2. And he 
durtt not fay, that God bindeth a people to obey him as being in 
Chnfts place, who hath not the power of Order and Jurifduftion ; 
But this is all [os non effe quidem mfe veros Epijcopos tAmen donet 
frttalikus habentur abEeclefia^ AeberiillMobedientiam, cum ctH/cifK~ 
tia etiam erronca obliget.~\ So that is but the Obligation of an erring 
Confcience, and not of God. But wifer men then Betlarwine fay, 
COnfcience hath no proper Sovereignty or Legiflative power, and 
therefore may ligftre, but not obligare, we being eo ipfo memento bound 
both to judge more truly, and lay by thaterrour, artdalfoto pra- 
#ice the contrary. 3 . Obferve, I pray you, that the upfhot of all 
is, that this is the whole tllats requisite &*!***#* habetintnr fro ta- 
iil?nt ab Ecelefia~] and fo I hope if the Church judge men Ordained 
without Blihops to be true Paftors, you have BelUrmines teftimony 
that they owe diem obedience, as to men that ftand in Chrifts pkce, 
But I have been too long about this Section. 

16. In the time of the Arian prevalency, when, as the Papifts 
cdnfefs fcarce five Bilhops could be found that were not turned Ari- 
ans,was there not then an interruption of fucceffion in point of right 
Ordinations ? and was all Null both then and iince > 

1 7. I have known in the Bifhops daies more then one or two idle 
ignorant Readers, that feigned their Orders, aad made the peeple 
believe that they were Ordained by the Bifhop, and condnuea many 
a year in Adminiftradon of both Sacraments ; and yet wiien it. was 
difcovered, it was not taken for Null which they had all this while 
done. Why then fhould Presbyters Ordination be Null ? 

18. It was not neceflary to the Priefthood before Chrift,diat there 
were an uninterrupted fucceffion of right Ordination rFor tfie.Priefts 
in Chrifts time were fuch as had no right to it ; not of the right line 
(which had been long before interrupted :) they bought the Prieft 
hood for Money : and as many judg*,we annual and two at a time 
(though not equal :) Yet Chrift requireth fubmiffionto them as 
Pnefts. I ana lorry that we muft be put to ufe the fame Argu 
ments with thefe men, as we have done againft the old Separates 
fo long. 

-But fome will Object, That all this doth only prove, that in cafe 
of Necefmy Presbyters may Ordain, and their Ordination is not 
Nail ; But thole cannot plead fuch Neceffity that have difobedienuy 
put down Bifhops diemfelves. 

N 3 To 


To this I Anfwer : i. Moft Minifters of any long ftandiag were 
Ordained by Bifhops, and therefore vril-i have no need of any of this 
Defence that I have ufed. 

j- 2. The Churches have never che lefs Neceflity of Paftors and Or 
dinances, notwithftanding the faults of their Paftors. 

3 . I know of few or none of our Aflbciation that can be charged 
with taking down BHhops: Iknow nonefo liable tofucha charge 
as my felf, who yet am ready to give an account to any Brother that; 
k offended; andlbeleeve that they ought to rebuke me perforeilly 
and hear my anfwcr, before they withdraw from me, or cenfure me ; 
much more fo many others for my fake. 

4. I do not know of any that can be charged higher ( as againft 
Epifcopacy) then for taking it down fo far as the Covenant takes it 
down. But the Covenant doth not take down all Epifcopacy; but 
only the concatenation of Archbifhops, Bifhops, Chancellours, &c* 
which were then in England. To prove this i. The words fuffice, 
which can be no further extended theri to the kinde of Epifcopacy. 
2. See M r Colemans Explication of it tb the Lords houfe, upon which 
they took it, as in that fenfe, 

Befides, we have not in this County (any where that I know of) 
once offered the Covenant co any of our people (except thofe that 
were in the Garrisons or Armies :) See further M r Print Speech 
in Parliament for an Agreement on the late Kings laft terms. 

5. The late Bifhops., even in the judgement of all moderate men 
of their own party that ever I fpoke with, did very many of them de- 
ferve to be pat down, and more. Reade the Articles againft wren, 
Tierce^ Goodman, Lattd 3 &.c. 

6. We do in the very firft Article of our Agreement, difclaim a 
prefent engaging our felves for any party, as fuch : or againft any : 
and therefore we cannot in any JufUce be difclaimed as a party that 
are confederate againft Epifcopacy : When we only defire a unani 
mous agreement in pradice, fo far as we are already agreed in Judg 
ment, that our difcord or ftrangenefs may neither hinder our further 
edification, nor yet deprive th Church of Gods Ordinances, or of 
the beauty,ftrength,and other benefits of Union. 

But perhaps it will be faid, that We have no fuch Neceflity, either 
of Ordination without Bifhops, or of private agreements to Govern 
our Churches without them : For either we have Bifhops, or may 
have when we will. 



To- which I Anfwer : i . Whether we have Bifhops or no,we mufi 
Govern the Churches committed to our charge, fo far as belongs t6 
Preshyters : and we have agreed on no more. 

2. I know not of any Bifhop we have in this County ( nor in ma 
ny near us:) and therefore how can any fcek to them whom they 
know not, either for Ordination or Government ? If any man will 
come among us, and prove htmfelf to be our Bifhop rightly called ; 
he (halt finde that we will be ready (I hope) to yield him as much 
obedience as Gods Word commands us. 

3. We know but very few Diocefen Bifhops living in the Land; 
whereof one is a Bifhop of another &and, two or three at a very 
great diftance,none of them Bifhops of this Diocefs ; feme (I think) 
in the Tower, where we cannot come at them;,and by their impeach 
ments, fiippofe them uncapable of Ordaining : Therefore we are un- 
capable of making ufe of thefe. 

4. We are all Ordained already, and we cannot be new-Ordained 
again, without i. Incurring the fentence of deprivation, according 
to the Can.Apoft.6j. which requires that he be Depofed who feeketh 
another Ordination, being already Ordained. 2. Or without un- 
Churching all or moft of Chrifts Churches, and Degrading his Mi- 
niflers, by taking our Ordination for Null, as hath been fhewed. 
And we do not go about our felves by this Agreement to meddle with 

5. This Objection fuppofeth, either that we are convinced that 
Diocefan Epifcopacy,is the only lawfuil Government of the Church, 
or clfe that we may be convinced of it when we will or elfe that 
)}iocefan Epifcopacy is fuch a Fundamentall, that he that beleeveth 
it not to be Gods only way of Church-Government, ( though he be 
never fo willing and diligent to know the truth, yet) muft be avoid 
ed, and fe^arated from. But the two former iuppofitions we know 
to be falfe,and the third no Proteftam takes for a Truth. For i .Pro- 
teftants have taken the Creed, Lords Prayer and ten Command*- 
ments, for a fufficient teft of Chriftian Dodrine, fo far as to difcern 
who are Chnftians and to be communicated with ; at leait taking 
them with that Explication which an ordinary Beli-ever may eallly 
and certainly tinde out, in the reft of the Scriptures. They take thofe 
to be no Fundamentals, which fo many hundreds of men, yea the 
moft Learned and Godly on earth, cannot yet agree in, or finde out 
the fenfe of. 2. Proteftants do not believe that all rhe Proteftani; 
Churches except England .and Ireland ( no nor any one for want of 



Epifcepacy ) are to be excommunicated, or feparated from. .The 
Oojedors muft therefore remember, that we are not ail of a minde 
about Epifcopacy, and therefore cannot yetfetkup, becaufe we 
muft not do that which we judge to be againft Gods Word. But 
muft we therefore feparate or leave all undone ? and give u-p our 
Flocks to rapine and ruine > 

If they fay that men of fuch erroneous principles, if they cannot 
bercdined, are bound to give up the Miniftry toothers of better 

I Anfwer : i . Shew me but where thofe men are, in fo full a num 
ber as may fupply the Churches neceffiues, but fo<farre,as that I and 
fuch as I may confcionably furceaie, without the Churches iofs, and 
I here promife that I will joyfully give up my Office, when ever any 
fuch litter man (hall be called to my place. And I think the reft of 
my Brethren will do the like. But we live in the open world, where 
we have opportunity to know men, as well as others : and we can 
not fee any fuch plentiful! choice of Able, Pious men to fupply all our 
Places if we fhouid give them up. And either the late BiChops knew 
of none fuch ^ or elfe they took the drunken Readers ( that could 
fcarce yet have a Legit to fave their necks, if they needed it) to be fit 
ter men then we to edifi e the Flocks. 

2. It feems thefe Objedors are of the fame minde as the late Pre 
lates, and would deprive and filence us all that are not convinced of 
the lUghtfulnefs of Epifcopacy, if it were in their power.. For if 
they think that we may not be AlTociated or Communicated with as 
Minifters, unlefs we will fet up Epifcopacy- it ieemsthey would 
authoritatively remove us, if they could, though we yet do nothing 
againft them. 

3. Methinks, modeft humble men, confcious of the frailty and 
fallibility of their own underftandings, fhould not be fo confident in 
a Point fo difficult or at leaft (hould not be fo unmercifully cenfo- 
rioos to their Brethren, as tocaftoffall that cannot fee into a cafe 
fo difficult fo far as they, (fuppoie they fee themieives.) If they think 
it is of no great difficulty then they are yet more unchnftianly cenfo- 
rious, to think that fo many Learned, Judicious, Godly Divines as 
fmce the Reformation have been againft Epifcopacy in France, Hol 
land, Helvetia, Germany, Scotland, yea in England, fhould all be fo 
wicked, as to (but their eyes againtt fo eafie a Irnt!i, this is a hard 
judgement for humble men to pafs. We muft intreat them to fuppofe 
that as we have read many of their Writings for Epifcopacy, fo we 



have read many againft it : And among fuch Probabilities brought 
on both fides by fueh Learned men, we take it not for fuch an eafie 
matter to be certain of the right, as fome confident men affirm it to 
be. I know that many heap up arguments and bring us long rols of 
Authorities for Epifcopacy. And I know that Gerfom, Bttcerw,Beza y 
Altare Damstfcenum, Parker, Baines, Salmafim., BloadelltM, Prin (in 
his Catalogue of Writers againft Bifhops, and in his Hiftory of Bi- 
fhops, Part 2. Ch.3- and unbifhoping of Timothy and>7Vm*.) D r 
Reignolds, and others, do give us as long a train of Arguments and 
Authorities on the other fide. For our parts, we are fome of one 
minde ( it s likely) in this, and forne of another ; and it is utterly 
againft my purpofe to fpeak on either fide ; but, methinks all thole 
men that have without prejudice read the Authors that I have men 
tioned (efpecially Bucerw, Parker, and Blonddlut, and Sdm^fim,) 
yea though they have read all that ever was writ on the other fide, 
fhould be fo apprehenfive of a difficulty in the bufinefs, as to be 
moderate and modeft in the cenfure of their Brethren, and not to 
degrade or excommunicate all that differ from them. 

But fome will Object, If there be as great a.Necefiity of Preach 
ing the Word, as you mention, yet while Bifhops are abfent, or you 
cannot have them for Ordination and Junfdictton, you fhould only 
Preach or inftruet people in charity, as private men, but not under 
take the work of the Miniftry,what neceility foever there be. 

I Anfwer : i. The Giurch of Chrift is little beholden to fuch Ob- 
jeftors, that would rather the Church fhould never have Minifters 
or Mimfterial adrainiftrations , then have them without Bifhops. 
2. Do you think that private men may publiquely Preach the Word, 
and that cc; \\\ intly,according to the Churches neceflities ? why then 
may they not as^well adrnirufter Sacraments. The Apoftles had as 
fpecial a Commiliion to Preach as to adniinifter Sacraments. 3. Then 
if it be proved that fuccefiion of right Ordination is interrupted, f6 
that no man can be found that hath had fuch a fucceilion from an 
Apoftle,, and fo is authorized to Ordain; it feems you would have 
Chrift have no Minifters nor governed Church on earth any more, 
till he fend lie v Apofi ks. Or if the Preachers in New-England could 
ccmvert all the Indians to the faith, and could not haveaBifhcn to 
Ordain them Mmifters, you would have -thefe Converts be without 
Minifters, Sacraments, Government, and Minifteriall Churches to 
the worlds end. 4. We were many of us Ordained long before the 

O Bifhops 

Btfhops were down : and muft we give up our Charges becaufe they 
are down ? 

Obj. But you may not Rule or exercife Difciphne without them. 

Anfw. This is anfwered already. Further, i. We do not exercife 
any Rule or Difcipline that moderate Epifcopal men do claim to be 
proper to the Bifhop. We have only reiblved to do the acknowledg 
ed duty of Presbyters. 2. But for my part I make noqueftion but 
Presbyters may and muft Rule their Congregations , by all, the 
ads of Chrifts Difcipline even Excommunication and Abfolution. 

1. Bienwe excepted only Ordination as the Bifhops prerogative 
( what time foever he fpoke of.) 2. Minifters are called Redors and 
Paftors of their Congregations, by Law, and by Divines. 3. In 
their Ordination the Bifhops faid to them Q Receive the holy Gboft, 
whofe fins ye do Remit they are Remitted, whofe fins ye do Retain, 
they are Retained.] 4. Almoft all Epifcopal Divines that I know 
of, do fully confefs it. So Bifhop Downtime Defence of Confecrat. 
Serai. 7.3. ^.4.^.105. gives Deacons a power of Preaching and Bap 
tizing, and Presbyters moreover of adminiftring the Lords Supper, 
and remitting and retaining mens fins Yea Bifhop VJber in his An- 
iwertothe jefuites C hall. fag. 133. faith pn the dales not only of 
Cyfrian, but-Alcttinu* alio ( who lived 800 years after Chrift) the 
Reconciliation of Penitents was not held to be fuch a proper Office 
of thePrieft, but that a Deacon in his~abfence was allowed toper- 
form the fame. The ordinary courfe that was held herein, according 
to the form of the Ancient Canons, is thus laid down by the Fathers 
of the third Council of Toledo : That the Prieft fhould firft fu/pend 
him that repented of his fault from the Communion, and make him 
to have often recourfe- unto Impofition of hands among the reft of 
the Penitents ; then when he had fulfilled the time of his fatisfadicn, 
as the confideration of the Prieft did approve of it, he fliould reftore 
him to the Communion.) So UJber. It were eafie to ftlew the con 
current Judgements of Epifcopal Proteftants for Presbyters Govern 
ing their Flocks 5 fo be it, i . That they conrradid: not the Biftiop. 

2, And -that they allow the Bllhop to Govern the Presbyters. But it 
would be tcdious and needlefs. 5. Almoft all Epifcopal Divines that 
{know of (except one or two new ones of thefe times) do expound 
all thefe following Texts of Scripture, as fpoken of Presbyters, Afts 
20.28. H^. 13- 7,i7,M- i ^7:5.12,13. Tit. I-5A7- 1^3. 
2^,4. 1.^.5.2,3,4. And fo do the Fathers expound them (though 
1% not all of them, tfi&&.fhftj*fr&) See Prins Catalogue 


j&.i,2,3. and Hiftory of Prel. Part 2. p. 315,316,317,^. And for 
thole that of late expound them otherwife, Idoubt not but it is eafie 
to difcover their miftake, and withall how deadly a blow their inter 
pretation giveth to their own Caufe : but that I aro refolved now to 
forbear fuch Difputes. 6. Church-Government by Paftorsisbut 
Directive, by expounding and applying Gods Word, and not Co 
ercive by external force. And if a Presbyter may not Govern dire- 
lively, then he may not T-each, and then he hath nothing to do. 
Bellarm. diftinguifheth of interior Jiirifdid:ion ad populum Chriftia- 
nmn regendttnt in foro interior* Con\cienti& : and exterior Junf diction 
adettndem populism regendum in foro exteriori : and he cites Abulenjis 
Defexf* Part 2. c.6 3 . faying thac the former power of Jurifdidiion is 
conferred by God immediatly on every Prieft in their Ordination : 
(Bellarm.de Pontif.\.^,c.22.} SpaUtenfis hath largely (hewed that the 
proper Minifterial Junldittion is exercifed on Confcience : and lib.$. 
de Rep.EccLc.i2. he fbews that the Presbyter without the Bifhop 
may io binde and loofe, and keep from the Sacrament or admit to it: 
which he oft (hews eifewhere, as to that interior power which is only 
on Confcience. Yea Cardinal Cafaaus, de Concord.Cathol. 1.2.c. 1 3 . 
faith plainly, Omnes Epifcopi & forte etiam Prefyteri, aqualx fnnt 
poteftatis quoad fur ifdif Hone m; licet non executions: quod qttide m~> 
exercitiptm execHtivum^b cert it pofitivx clauditur Qr reftringitur&c. 
unde ceffante caujaflatuti iUint, tune ceffant ilia ftirapofitiva. Though 
for my part, I think the term Jurifdidion is a great deal too big to 
be properly appliable to any EcclefiafticaljMiniilerial Government, 
well, de Imperio fum. pot.c. 8. p. 209,210. Quod ante m~> 
nonnulli, habeatne Ecclefia Legiflativam poteftatem, id ex ki$ 
rius a nob Is explicit a f tint facile diffolvitttr. Nam lege divind 
nonhabet; To fof^a^l^y drit7ut mt gx.cnhHn, & facerdotum non eft v 6^/. 
xftL\H?y ^t ante citavlmw : quare qn<z ante Imperatores Ckriftianos in 
Synods confcriptafftnt, ad Ordinem ant Ornatttm facientijt, Leges non 
vocawtur, fed Canones, hahentque ant folam Gcnfilii vim, tit in his qtt& 
fingulos magi* jpeftant qnam univerfos, aut obligant per rwodum patti 
volentes, & mlentes etiam pattciores ex n?cefTitate dgtermi<tationi$> ac 

f JJ 

proinde ex lege naturali, non ex hxmam aliquo Imperio.~\ Yea a further 
power there is to give fuch Directions which Gods Law obligeth men 
to obey: but this isfcarce properly called Jurifdidion. 7. As for 
thofe that fay the Biihops are the fole Pallors, and the power of Pref- j 
byrers is but delegate from them, and therefore they may do nothing 
without them, all Scripture that defcribe the Office of Presbyters 

O 2 doth 


doth fully contradict them. The fame God that fet in his Church 
Prophets, Apoftles, Evangelifts, did alfo fet Paftors and Teachers : 
and -he wilt require an account of them, of the difcharge of their 
Truft. If the Objectors dodrine were true, and we had none of us 
Curam Antiwar um, it were a glad doctrine to Presbyters, who 
might at judgement caft all on the Bi(hop, and a fad dodririe to Bi 
fhops, that muft anfwer f6r all. And what wife man would then be 
a Diocefan Bifhop when he muft take the Charge of many thoufand 
fouls, that muft wholly be committed to others inftrudion, and he 
himfelf fha 11 never fee their faces, nor hear their names. See this 
conceit of the Objectors fully confuted by Sfabtte#Jfc(toto rigid Prote- 
ftant) de Repxkl. Ecclef. 1.2. c.p. 8. Papifts themielves confefs that 
when there is no Bifhop the Government lieth on the Presbyters. 
9. Who knows not (the Biihops confefiingit ) that in Cyprians 
time, and according to feveral Canons, the Presbyters joyned with 
the Bifhop in Ordination and Jurifdidion ? And if it were a Bifhop 
with his Presbytery that did Ordain and Govern, then it is evi 
dent that the imployment is not aliene to the Presbyters place , 
nor above it : though they might not: do 4t folely , becaufe of 
the Bifhops precedency , yet when there is no iuch Prefident 5 
k lieth all on them; fee Condi. Cartkag. ^. Can. 3.- & 22, yea 
CVz#.23". it is Decreed that Bpifcopw nuliins cdufar# attdiat abjque 
prtzfentia cleric arum fuorum , tilioqnin irrita erit fententia Epif- 
copi, mfi ClericorMmprafentia awfirmetttr. And for the Bifhops pow 
er over Presbyters, it was fo limited that the fame Council ordains, 
C^.29- that if -a Bifhop fhall charge a crime on a Clergy man, or 
Lay man, he fhall be put to prove it at a Synod. And Can.^o. if the 
Judges of the Church gave fentence in his abfence, whofe caufe was 
tried, the fentence fhall be void, snd the Judges fhall alfo anfwer at*. 
a Synod for their fad-.] And Can. 34. A Btfhop fitting was not to 
fuffer a Presbyter to itand.] And Can. 35. The Bifhop was to lit 
higher in the Church, but at home let him know that he is a Collegue 
of the Presbyters.] And Ctm^j. The Deacon muft know himfelf 
to be a Minifter or Servant, as of the Bifhop, ib of the Presbyter.] 
Yea CVi#.68. It is decreed that ^_Ex pjnirentibnj ( qttawvij-Jit bonu* 
cleric w) non or&imtur. Si prr ignoraKtiam Epifcjupi f aft urn f tier it, 
Depvx/ttttr a Clero^ qtiid.fi orAinat-wnM tempore won pr(,diditfiti$epwi- 
tentcm. Siauter/tfciensEpifc6Vm (,rdinavt j rittfJcffl., etiaw ipje ah E- 
pifcopatw fxi ordinandi duntaxat piteftate privttur.^ Here you fee that 
that is unjuftly Ordained by the Bifhop may be Depofed by the 

Clergy ;. 

Clergy * And why may they not Ordain without a Bifhop, as well as 
Depoie withoi:t hiisi ? At leaft they that may Depofe a Clerk withr 
out him, may rejeftbr caft out an v open offender of the people with- 
ouHum. And in the fecond Council of Carth. Can.io. The c.aufe 
of a Prcsby ter in criminals, was to be heard-by fix Bifhop?, and noc 
iefa, And in the firft COKC. Carth. a Presbyter is to be reproved of 
fix Bifhops, Can. 1 1. and a Deacoi* by three. And afterward when 
Bifhops yet grew higher it was Decreed in CcKc.C0nk#g. $. (con 
firmed in the fixth general Council ) that a Presbyter reconcile noc 
a Penitent without confulting with the Bifhop, except the Bifhop be 
abfent, or necefiity conftram : So that in both- thole cafes he might,, 
though he had a Bifhop over him. Yea it feems Deacons had iome 
Ruling power in the Church : For the Council of Elikert, Can." 7* 
decree that [Siqui* DiacciwiRegens plebcm, five EpifccpQi/el Prejlj- 
tero, aliqttQS bapti^averit , Epijccfus eos per bencditticn m , perfcere 
debebit.~\ 10. The tf.Ctwon.Concil.Elibert, decreeth, That in cafe 
ofNeceiilty aLiy man may baptize. And can the Obj edors prove 
that I ay-men have in Scripture more power given them to baptize, 
then .Presbyters to .Ordain or Govern the Church? u. The 98, 
Canon of the fourth Comic . of Carthage, decreeth, That a Lay-man 
(hall not dare to Teach, the Clergy being prefent, except they de-lire 
him.] Whereby it appears chat in their abfence, or at their defire, 
he might. Now I would know whether a Lay man have any beccer 
authority for fuch Teaching, then Presbyters have for Ordaining 
and Government? 12. That Presbyters Lave Votes in Councils 
(which is the greater) our Proteftant Divines at large have proved 
againft the Papifts. See D r Sxtlive de CcnciLcapti, fo very many 
more. 13. The Epifeopal Divines do affirm that the Apoftles 
thenifelves having. planted Churches, and Ordained Presbyters in 
them, did retain the Epifeopal power in their own hands. Now I 
would fain know, when Paul is fb long in EfkefM and the adjoyning 
parts of AJia ( above three years ) and fo long at.Rcwe.&c. Who 
did Govern the Churches that-while, from which he was fo far and 
fo long abfent? Were they ungoverned? or did another Bifhop 
Govern them? Or rather did the Presbyters, whom the holy Ghok 
had made their Bifhops or Overfeers ? And have not Presbyters now 
the fame Office? 14. I would know, if a Presbyter, as fuch^ may 
not Qrdain or Rule, whether to enable him thereto^ and make iunv 
a Bifhop, he muft have a further Ordination ? If no : then it feems,_. 
that the firft Ordinarion which made him but a meer Presbyter, gavs 

O 5 him- 

f Si ) 

him the power, though the pretence of his Superiour might hie & 
nunc hinder the execution : If he muft be Ordained Bifhop, I deftre 
fome proof of it out of the Bible : VYhere is there either precept or 
prefident, for Ordaining any man a Bifhop, that was before Or 
dained a Presbyter > If a Captain of aTroop, or Colonel of a Regi 
ment, either die or be abfent, the Lieutenant of the Troop, or Lieu 
tenant Colonel of the Regiment, needs no new Commifllon or Au 
thority for the Commanding of that Troop or Regiment, till another 
Captain or Colonel fhall be chofen. 

I muft entreat the Reader to remember, that I am all this while 
neceflltated to go upon the Grounds which the Epifcopall Divines 
will own, and to cite only thofe Authours or Canons which are of 
force with them, becaufe I am only proving that there is nothing in 
our worcefterfttire Agreement that is contrary to their principles, or 
chat muft necefTarily exclude a Proteftant Epifcopal Divine from our 
Aflbciations. And therefore to argue againft any of their opinions, 
would be contrary to my fcope And to have cited Calvin, Tteza, 
Chamivr, Partix, MttjCttlus, or any of thofe multitudes of forreign 
Divines chat are known to be againft them, would have been labour 
in vain ; and fo it would have been to have cited Reynolds, trhitakers, 
D r Htfvtfh^i and fach l^e ac home, who are fome known to be a- 
gainft them, and fome no faft friends to them. 

If any after all this (hould require an account of my own judge 
ment about the neceiiity of Ordination, I fay, I am not now about 
fuch a bufineffe, nor do I account it feafonable to fay any more then 
this : i . God hath determined that every Church (hall have a Paftor 
or Paftors. 2. And he hath ftated the nature of their office and de 
gree of their power. 3 . And he hath defcribed the perfons that he 
will have to be the Officers by their requifite qualifications. All this 
is done in his Laws already. 4. There is nothing therefore left to be 
done but to determine which are the individual perfons that are fitteft 
according to Gods defcription. This God himfelf alfo will do, but 
hath not tied himfelf to one way in doing it : In generall, fome fign 
of Gods will that this is the man muftbe had ; Atfirft in calling the 
Apoftles his own immediate nomination was the fign . Now the moft 
notable fign is the moft eminent unqueftionable Qualification of the 
perfon, which when God conferred! fo notably or difcernably, that 
man muft be taken as chofen by God,and they that re jed: him do fin : 
Thefe Qualifications lie both in Abilities, Willingneffe, Conveniency 
of habitation, or other externals and intcreft in the people; and if 


Cod bow their mindes to confent, there is the fuller fignificatien of 
his will ; yet left any by intrufion fhould abufe the Church, God 
hath made the Paftors and Overfeers, Judges of mens fitnefie; or 
the ordinary difcerners of it, for the gudance of the Church in their 
confent. But then if thefe Judges or Difcerners take a man to be fit 
(and fo ordain him) who is utterly unfit, their ordination is ipfofatto 
null, as being againft Gods will ; for God gave them power only to 
ordain thofe that were fo and fo qualified, and forbad them to ordain 
others. Alfo if the Qualification and fitneffeof the perfon be emi 
nent; the people are bound to fee Gods choice, and to accept that 
man of themielves without Ordination rather then an infufficient 
man ordained. For as Cyprian tifth,PlebscbfeqmnsfraceftM < T)cmiKi- 
cis & Deum metuens, a feccatore pr<epJitofepararefe Met, nccfe adfa- 
crilegi facer dot i*f acrificia wifcere : quando ipfa max:me kakeat pctefta- 
tem vel eligendi dignvsfacerdotes, vel indignos rectijandi ; jS^od & ip- 
fum V idem its de divina author it dte defcendere., ut facer do s p/ebe frafente^ 
fuh omnium ocnli$ deligatur, & dignw fltqjte idcnew ^uilico judicio ac 
t-ejiimonio comfroketur, &c.<5V ft ordinatic jttfta & legitima qt;< Lmnium 
fttfragio & judiciofuerit examtnata^. That which 1 efpecially note is 
the firit words, that God leaves neither Bifbops at liberty who to or 
dain, nor people whom to choofe, but hath fo defcribed to them the 
perfons, that if they grofTely erre y their action is null : and therefore 
the people themfeives are bound to caft off a wicked, or utterly unfic 
Paftor, though all the Bifhops in the world command them to receive 
them ( as in the Arrians time fome did ) And on the contrary they 
are bound to choofe the fitteft againft the Bifhops minde, if he would 
thruft an unfit one upon them. And in fuch a cafe there is fufficienc 
fignification of Gods will that QThis (hould be the man") and then 
want of Ordination cannot null his calling, if he-had none at all; 
For where there is no place for cpntroveriie there is no need of a 
Judge : And where God eminently qiiaiifieth one man, and leaves 
another utterly unfit , there fhouid be no controverfie which 
fhould be the man. And that Judgement which is committed to Or- 
dainers is limited, and it is direded by Gods Laws, which it may not . 
paffe or contradid. If it do notorioufly, the fame Law commands 
the people not to obey man before God. Alfo this Power is 
given to certain ends : and if it be ufed againft thofe ends 5 fo that 
either the ends or that means muft be forfaken, it is eafie to fee that 
it is means and not the ends. For the means are not alwaies the .(anie 3 > 
God having. ftore if any one fail Especially the-m^ans Is 

morality, and the ends of naturall morality : For when two duties 
come together, and both cannot be chofen, the chooflng of the lelTe 
( which muft give place to the greater ) is a fin : and Positives are 
lefle ( cAteris paribw ) then Naturals : And the fubftantials of Pofi- 
tives more necefTary then the Circumftantials : It is of flat neceffity 
that the Church be taught and guided, and God publrquely worfhip- 
pcd : It is neceflary that there be Miniftcrs for that ufe. Ic is necefTa- 
ry that thefe men be godly^ able and willing. It is fit that able Paftors 
be Judges who thefe be, left unfit men creep in by deluding the peo 
ple. But this is but in order to the former as the end. If therefore a 
Bifhop or Paftor, or whoever (hall appoint over a people an ungodly 
man, or an inefficient, this appointment is ipfofatto null,- andoblt- 
geth not the people : Nay, God hath already obliged them to wor- 
(hip him publiqueiy, &c. and therefore they are bound to choofe a 
man unordained to this work rather then not perform it : and in fo 
doing they obey God in chooflng him whom God hath defigned, 
and he is a true Paftor. For as ,Cjprian faith, (Vbifttp. Epifl.6%. p! 
200,^01.) with the whole Synod; ^Defiderio veflro non tarn nojlra 
confilia quam divina pr^cepta respondent, qttibwt jampridem matfdatttr 
<voce coelefti, & Del lege prefer tbitur, quos & qudles oportet defervire 
*ltari, grjacrificia divina celebyare, &c. .04 cumprtditta & manife<- 
ftafint nob is, praceptM diving neceffe eft obfeqtiia noflra deferviant ; nee 
perfonam in ejufmodi rebw accipere, aut alicfttid cuiquam Urgirl pc- 
teft IwmanA inditlgentia, ubi intercedit & legem iribuit divina prxfcri" 
ptio. J So that in truth God doth all in conveying the Minifteriall 
power (zsSpalatenfts proves of the very Magifterial ) yea, he doth 
by his defcripdon and qualifications choofe the perfon, and only re 
quire men to accept him whom he hath defigned, by difcerning and 
obfervmg the fignes of his Will in the nomination. And mark, chat 
feeing all that God leaves to man is no more ; therefore Ordination 
and Election do not fo much differ as fome think; both being but 
the Ministerial determination of the perfon : And therefore it being 
proved eafily that Overfeers of the Church are the ftated Ordainers, 
it follows that they are the Principal Choofers ; unlefs you will crofs 
Scripture in making Ordination to be but a meer empty Ceremony. 
The people indeed muft (neccjfitatenatxraliadfinem) confent; but 
that s not Eledion ftriftiy. Or if they firft propound the man , yen 
they do not Determine of him Authoritatively : that is the Church- 
Officers or Governours part : But if he crofs Gods Word palpably 
by WA-adminiftratioii, the people have fudicium difcmionis ( as 


hath well proved, de judice cont. ) and muft difcern their 
own duty,and not partake in a Paftors fin, nor obey him before God, 
fo that this is neither to give the people any Authoritative determi 
ning choice,aor to exempt them from the Authoritative determining 
choice of their guides, except where their mifcarriage makes it null : 
Much iefle to make themfelves Church-Governours : No more then 
he makes an Army felf-governours , that when they finde their 
Commanders Traitors, and fee they would deliver them up to the 
Enemy, doth tell them they ought to forfake thofe Commanders in 
obedience to their Soveraign ; and obey the next that is trufty, or (if 
none be fo) choofe another till they have further orders : Nay, it is 
hard trufting the guidance of that man again that hath once betraied 
us and the Church : And therefore thofe Bifhops in England that fee 
Hp Drunkards and fottifh Readers, and caii out fuch as nslmes, Ttir- 
kgr, "Bains, Bradfiaw, Brightman, with multitudes, fuch as England 
was not worthy of; yea, that caft out the conformable fo faft, as if 
they had prefently been deftroying the Preaching of the Gofpel, I 
fay, thefe have fo apparently falfified their truft, that ( if we were 
fully refolved for Bifhops, yet) we cannot fubmit to them for Orcfi- 
nation or jurifdidion. The Condi. Rhegiexf. decreed [_Vt ferverji 
Ordinatores nullis denuo ordinationibus interfint~\ Where then (hall we 
have a Bifhop to ordain of the old accufed Tribe ? Alfo they de 
creed De remotione ejm quern ordinare ferferam dm frxftiinpfe- 

But then who (hall be encouraged or allowed publiquely to preach 
without diflurbance, of this the Magiftrate is the Judge. Of the bull* 
neffe of Election, fezGrotius very right de Imferiojttm. Pot. cap.io. 
fpecially p^.239. NePlebi invit<e c PaflorQbtrudatur. > & Jt mat Jalvo 
jttmmM potcftatibtts jure refcindendi et eft tones, ft quid forte in EcclefiA 
aut Reipfiblict perniciem erratum Jit. As David, Solomon^ &c. did ex- 
crcife luch power : By all this it may be difcerned that our Churches, 
Minifters, and Adminiftrations, cannot by Papifts or Seekers be juft- 
ly queftioned for want of fucceflion of right Ordination ; no, no 
though they had not had fo much as a Presbyter at firft to ordain 
them. And yet we maintain the ufefullnefle f:nd need of juft Ordi 
nation. But I have been farre longer then I intended upon chit 


The laft Ob je&ion that I am to anfwer is this 5 Many of our peo 
ple will not joyn with us,except they may have all Adrainiftrations as 

P formerly, 

fcrmcriy, accd.rdmg to the Common Praieivgook j especially ex 
cept they may kneelat the Receiving of the Lords Supper. And fome 
Dividing difcontented Divines do encourage them in that opinion and 

To thefe lanfwer. i. We have not in cur Agreement medled 
with thpfc things, but leave every Minifter to his o wn judgement in 
Circumstantials, only deiiring that we may agree as farre as may be 
and therefore that we will hear each others realons- So that fome that 
do affociate with us doconftantly deliver the Lords Supper to the 
people kneeling; who think it moil fuitabie to the ft ace of their 

2. I beleeve there is no example of fuch a courfe of choofing Pa- 
$ors in any age of the Church, for the people to agree with them 
before-hand co do as they would have them in every gefture or other 
circufflftance, oreife they will not own diem or communicate with 

3. It is contrary to the office of Pattors and duties of people. For 
they are to choofe a Paftor to guide them, and not to be guided by 
them. Yet we acknowledge the people muft not follow a Paftor in 
known fin. But then they muft manifeft it to be fin, Therefore I adde. 

4. There is no Paftor among us but will be ready to give an ac 
count, and offer fatisfadion to any of his people, concerning any 
mifcarriage or male-adminiftration. For we have engaged our ielves 
to be fo accountable before our Brethren of the Aflbciation. And if 
our people do reft on the judgement of other men, we fhall be ready 
to debate the cafe with any man that they (hall bring : Either to re 
ceive fatisfadion, or to give fatisfadien. 

5. How impoilible is it according to thefe mens principles to keep 
our Churches in Unity ? For when many parties be of many mindes 
and fome will have praier on the Books, and others without, fome 
will have one way of adminiftration and fome another, a Minifter 
.cannot pleafe all ; Either therefore they muft yield tha t he be their 
guide in their worfhiping of God, as to Circumftantials, or elfe they 
muft break in peeces about every circumftantial difference. 

>-6. Would you fubmit if all the Bifhop* had advifed or required 
you to forbear kneeling at the Sacrament ? If not, it feems you think 
itnecelTaryofitfelf: If you would, then it feems you take it for in 
different : And ihould any for indifferent things rejeft the guidance 
of their prefent Teachers, and the communion of their Brethren and 
the Ordinances of God ? 

7- 1 

7. I think there is no Paftor of our Aflbeiations but will be glad 
to condefcend as far as confcicnce and duty will permit, for thefatis- 
fying of any that are truly conscientious, and therefore I doubt not 
but by fpeech or a&ion they willeafily fatisfie them, when there is 
particular occafion i And more particularly, as fome apprehend a 
neceffity of fitting, becaufe of the example of the Apoftles, and othe* 
Reafons j and others think kneeling neceflary for Reverence : I doubl 
not but all of us {hall be willing to yeeld to the middle gefture of {lan 
ding to any that defire fo to receive ; what further yeelding may be, 
I leave to every Minifter to determine, according to the weight of the 
fcruples of his people. 

But if any will yet fo infift on kneeling at the receiving of the Lords 
Supper, as that they will not joyn with Minifter or people, except 
they may have aiTurance before- hand fo to receive it, I (hall give 
them my thoughts of their way in thefe few Queftions : 

j?._i. Do not fuch make themfeives or their leaders (on whofc 
Authority they take up thefe conceits) to be wifer then the Lord Jo- 
fus and his Apoftles ? Chriil thought it not neoefTary either to deliver 
it to his Difciples kneeling, nor yet to command that it fhould be fo 
delivered. And thefe men it feems do judge it neceflary. 

0;.Chrift did not command all things ncceflary, but left fome to 
.the command of the Church. 

ssfnftv. Things of a {landing neceflity which ought to be practt- 
fed by his Church ordinarily in all ages, Chrift hath commanded. But 
things that vary according to the variation of times, places, per- 
fons, &c . he hath determined only in generall, and left the fpeciall 
determination to Church- Go vernours a to be varied as occafion re 
quires ; ( As what time the Sermon (hall begin, how long iffhall.be, 
ori what Text, where the Congregation fhall meet, &c.) Now I 
would know whether kneeling in the act of receiving have any ne"cet 
iity how which it had not formerly, even 1 500. or 1600. years ago : 
Do any bring any new reafon of its neceflity ? I know of none. The 
.common reafon is QWe cannot ferve God too reverently ] And was 
not that reafon as forcible then as now ? both when Chrift was vifi- 
bly prefent, and afterward when the Church for many 100. years was 
px>fleffed with as great a reverence of God as ihehigheft pretenders 
now are. 

^2. Doth it not imply a deniall of Scriptare-fufiiciency to be 
the perfed rule of Faith and Life ? the great point that differehceth 
the Reformed Churches from the Papifts. For" though it belong v nok 

Pi to 


to the Rule (the Word of God) to determine of particular circum- 
ftances, which either need no determinadon or are to be determined 
varioufly according to the variation of occasions, ( and therefore 
muft not be fixedly determined by humane Laws; ) yet doth it unde 
niably belong to the perfection of a Law to leave as little undetermi 
ned as may be, which needs determination ; and therefore to deter- - 
mine of that which is of {landing neceffity : And who can give any 
reafon why Chrift (hould not have commanded kneeling at the Sacra 
ment as well as a Council or Bifhop,if it be a matter fo ordinarily ne- 
ccfTary as is pretended > 

Do not thefe men make themfelves wifer then all the Chur 

ches of Chrift for many hundred years after Chrift ? For it is certain, 
that for fo long the Church ufed not to receive kneeling ; Proved 
I. In that for a long time the Sacrament was received with their Love- 
Feafts conjundly. 2. For longer time the Churches would not fo 
much as kneel in praier on the Lords Day ; much lefle in receiving 
the Sacrament. Yea, they accounted it a hamous offence to kneel in 
praier, and made many Canons againft it in feverall ages. But fome 
objed, that as they did not receive kneeling, fo they did not receive 
fitting: For it was {landing, and ftandmg was then a praier-gefture, 
and therefore we muft receive it in our praier-gefture now. 

&4nf. I. Will not {landing now fatisfie the Confciences of thefe 
men, when they think that all the Primitive Churches did but both 
pray and receive fo ? 2. When will thefe men prove what they af 
firm, that it was ftanding and not fitting that was the gefture then 
wfed in Receiving ? Why, they fay, becaufc it was ftanding that was 
then commanded in the publique worfhip. Anf. But they fhould 
prove that it was in all worfhip : and not in Prayer and Praifes only. 
How come fo many Canons about the Order of Presbyters, Dea 
cons,^. fitting? Indeed they did keep the Lords day as a day of 
thankfgiving, as being in commemoration of the greateft mercy that 
the world hath received, even Redemption by Chrift : And there 
fore partly in commemoration of his Refurredion, partly to avoid 
ail fignes of dejedion (which were thought unfit on daies of Thankf 
giving ) they commanded ftanding in Prayer ( not at Sacrament ) 
as judging fitting too unreverent, and kneeling unfutable to the fo- 
lemnity and rejoycing of the day : fo that it was in oppofition to 
kneeling that ftandkig in Prayer was required. And therefore the 
feme Councils forbad Fafting on the Lords day as a haynous fin, and 
any Fathers sttfcic a mark of the true Churches and Chriftias 

nottofaft onthofe dales: yea and Synods did Anathematize them 
that then fafted : Ignatius his fevere cenfure againft fuch is well 
known. And therefore they called the Lords daies, the Churches 
Feftivals : And therefore alfo they forbad kneeling on any week day 
between Eafter and Pentecoft, which were Feftival feafons. So that 
our Objectors will never prove that they Received ftanding: Or if 
they could, will it follow that it was becaufe that was the Prayer-ge- 
fture ? I cannot ft ay to cite many Authors. Only thus much. i. It 
appears by their Love-Feafts, at which they fate, that they did not 
{land in all the fervice of that day. 2. fttftin Martyr faith, 4fol.2. 
[_ After this we all Rife and offer Prayers, &c.~} And is it not plain 
then that they fate before they rofe ? and that ftanding was but the 
Prayer gefture in ftead of kneeling ? 3 . The injunction is expreily 
[] for ftanding, and not kneeling ] as oppofite. I can fhew them 
where it s faid Die Dominico Jejttnitim nefa dicimu* ; velde Genicu- 
lxadorarefrc.~] Tertull. (if it be his) de Coren. Milit.cap.$8. Lee 
them (hew the like againft fitting at the Sacrament. 

But what if this had keen fo> Had it not been as good an Argu 
ment to fay, Standing was their Hearing-gefture : and fitting is? ours : 
therefore we muft Receive fitting becaufe it is our Hearing gefttire.] 
And is it not a better Argument then either to fay [^Sitting was their 
eating Gefture (and among them where Chrift adminiftred it, a 
homelier fi tting then ours is :) and therefore we muft take it ia our 
Eating or Feafting gefture: as it s certain the Primitive Chriftians 
did.] It is therefore frequently by the Fathers called QaFeaft.] Ter- 
tttll. ( ad Vxorem li.2. ^.4.) cals it \_ConvwMm Dominic urn, .] Yet 
will hot we urge this better Argument to prove fitting NecefTary 
(but give them thatdefire it leave to ftand :) much lefs (hould they 
urge a plain fophifme for the Neceffity of Kneeling; - 

^/?.4. Do not thefe men deftroy their own Caufe, when they 
would prove the Neceffity of Kneeling, from a Neceffity of Confor 
mity to the Univerfal Church ? Nay doth not this Argument (hew a 
Popifh heart ? For it feems they take not all or any of the Reformed 
Churches of France, Holland, Germany, Scotland&c. who Receive 
fitting or ftanding, to be any part of the Univerfal Church. 2. If 
they take not the Primitive Church for many hundred years to be any 
part of the Univerfal Church, then they are worfe then Papifts. If 
they do, then may not we better argue Q The Primitive Church did 
not Kneel in Receiving ; therefore we muft not] then they can ar 
gue [The Church of later .times did Kneel in Receiving ; therefore 

P 3 we 


we muft:] For even the Papifts in matter of Tradition, do 
precedency to the firft Churches, and do make the prefect Church 
but the preferver and deliverer of the Traditions of the fdrmer. Is ic 
not plain therefore that there is fomething elfe then the Authority of 
the firft Churches that moves thefe men ; when they cannot be ig 
norant that Chrift and his Apofties and the Church for many hun 
dred years, did pradice the contrary? Yea they that have written 
for Kneeling, maintain that there was never any command for it (to 
the people) no not in the Church of Rome-- but that they fufferedit 
to come in as a cuftom filently, that they might not be obferved to 
contradid the old Canons againft Kneeling on the Lords daies. Even 
as low as Chryfiftowe s .time, it is but An Adoration of Chrift at the 
Sacrament"] that they .prove. Arid who denieth that ? VVe ftill pray 
to him before we Receive : Adoration and Kneeling are not all one : 
and Adoration by Kneeling is not all one with the doing this in the 
ad of Receiving. 

gwft* 5. Do not thefe. men make themfelves wifer then all the 
Eifhops and , Conforaiifts in England, who did? ever in their Writings 
and Difputings, maintain our Ceremonies to be things indiffe 
rent? And now they will efteem them fo Neceflary, that they will 
turn their back on Gods Ordinances, and become Separates for 
them ? 

gueft.6, Is it not the. more inexcufable for thefe men to turn Se~ 
paratifts, and that on fo fmall an occafion, as for a Ceremony or 
Gefture; in that they have both lived in an Age wherein they have 
fo fully feen the mifchiefs of Separation : and alfo have themfelves 
fpokefo much againft Separates as they have done? yea and ftill 
do ; while themfelves become the great Separatifts, and fo do but re 
proach themfelves. 

Ob]. It is not we t-hat Separate:, but they that deny tis the Sacra 
ment Kneeling are the Caufe. 

*Anf. So all the Separatifts fay > It is not long of them; and pre 
tend that they are necefiitated to it. But who is to be the Guide of 
facredAdions? Minifter or People? What if we fhould deny to 
giveitto ( them that fit ; ? Would yoa think that we gave them juft 
occafion. to feparate? Judge by former times. And yet they have 
more ftiew of reafon to fay fo. Befides, I have not feen any puc 
away for Kneeling. But if they may approach the Table and take it 
with the reft, in what Gefture they pleafe, yet this will fio* fatisfic 
Awaunlefsalfoitbeput into their hands; Tfeough it is undeniable 


that Ghrift did deliver it W- them all t3ejmliy : and not to each mans 
-hands, when yet he might wore conveniently do it, when they were 
but twelve. And Cte mem Alexsind. (Stromat. Ay. ) faith Alfo the 
Eucharift, when fome, as the manner is, have divided it, they per 
mit every one of the people to take a part of it : For to an accurate 
and perfed drooling or refilling ( a mans ) Conference is beft:>] J 
adde therefore, 

jQueft.J- Is it not enough that they refufe themfelves to be guided 
by then: Guides in their own Gefture,but they muft.alfo needs Guide 
the Adion of the Minifter himfelf, or elfe they will feparate? Should 
not he, at leaft, have the fame liberty to adminiiter according to his 
Confcience, as they exped in Receiving)according to theirs > -if. his 
Confcience tell him, that he Ihould deliver it but t die company 
con jundly as Chrirt did, and their Confcience tell them they Ihould 
take it Kneeling why Ihould not he be as much the guide of his own 
Adions, as they of theirs ? If it were a duty to put it into their hands, 
it is his duty and not theirs ; and therefore the not doing- it v would be 
his fin and not theirs : and what need their Confcience therefore 
drive them from the Ordinance ? elfe we muft needs break all in pie 
ces : For if we put it into every mans hands, then they that think we 
fhould do otherwife muft depart. 

Queft. 8. Do not they that would make more duties and fins then 
GoJliath made, forget that they liave enough to do already ? and 
that they are wont to think it too much that God himfelf hath com^ 
mandedthem? and that they will leave themfelves at laft more un- 
cxcufable for the negled of die duties of Gods prefcribing, when they 
could a-dde fo much more ?* 

Gfaeft.y. Should we-npt in doubtful! cafes take the fafetfiite^ And 
is it not fafer to do as Chrift and his Apoftles and his.Churcb for mau- 
ny hundred years did, then to follow the novelties of later times ? Is 
it not certain that where there is no Law, there is no tranfgreHion ? 
and I know of no Law binding us to Receive kneeling : therefore for 
my fttrt I cannot fear thatChri& will condemn me foe following his 
own, his Apoftles and his Churches exampJe,when he never gave me 
a word to the contrary. 

Obj. If Chrifts example bind to fit, then you rnu ft alfo imitate him 
in doing it in an upper room, and but to twelve, &c. 

Anf. i - This Objedion is nothing to our QuefHpn. For we be Jioc 
-affirming that iitting is t^eceifary, but that it is Certainly lawfuli,and 
that Kneeling is not fuch A ducy,- as. iohai men. lbouldrreiufc-C^aimu. 

* nion 


nion with a Church for want of it, 2. Both the known Rcafons of 
the thing, and the after practices of the Church, doaflureus that 
Chrifts adminiftring in an upper room, and but to twelve, and not 
to women, were all occafionall and mutable; and the Churches did 
otherwife : But for a Feafting gefture there is no ftich proof, 

[ obj+ But we are bound by the Canons of the Church which are ftill 
in force. 

Anf.i. Scripture is the Churches fufficient Rule, and, the perfed 
Law of God. 2. Thofe things that Scripture hath left to occaiionall 
determination, no Councils muft make Handing Laws for to bind at 
all times. For. if fuch Laws had been fit, God would have made 
them. 3. 1C is the prefent Guides of the Church that are upon the 
place, and fee the occafions, that muft determine fuch Circumftanti- 
als as are of mutable determination. And former Church-Gover- 
nours can no more take away the power of the prefent, then they 
can deprive them of their Office; it being effentiall to the Office of 
every Paftor to be a Guide or Ruler of his Flock. 4. If you think 
that all Church-Canons ( yea though it be General Councils ) bind, 
then you are bound to Contradictories : for one Council hath otc 
crofled another. And Papifts themfelves difclaim many things eo- 
joyned by Canons. The 1 6. Canon of the 4. Counc. of Carthage, 
requires Minifters not to reade the Books of Heathens : Doth this 
bind now ? Many the like might be mentioned. 5. If you will needs 
take your felves bound by Canons, I pray you tell me whether the 
Canons of a few Bifhops in England of late, (hould bind againft the 
Canons and conft ant pradice of the Primitive Church, and of the 
Apoftles themfelves ? They forbid Kneeling on the Lords day and 
the Apoftles, pradifed fitting at Sacrament; and either our late Ca 
nons are Null for contradicting the former which were of greater 
authority ; or elfe neither are binding. 6. According to their own 
grounds, our Bifhops had no power to make Canons,, both becaufe 
they were no BUhops, for want of a fucceiiive true Ordination, and 
becaufe they had made themfelves uncapable. Even the matter of 
our Bifhops Election, according to many Canons, made them unca 
pable of ever being Bifhops more. The fourth Can. Concil.Axrelian. 
Decrees, not only that the Clergy and people muft confent, but that 
if their confent were but forced (ortheyinclinedj by the opprefiion 
of thofe in power, that Bifhop fhould be depofed fur ever, as coming 
in more by violence then by lawfull Decree.] Now how our Englifti 
Biftiops came in, I had rather their friend Grotiw Ihouldtell them 



then I ( though we all know that neither Clergy nor people had any 
hand in it but a little ceremonious formality of the Chapter) de 
Imter.fttm. poteft. cap. I o. /w. 3 1 9- E At priori &vo tot a eleciio Re- 
ffi reddita. Hodie penes Capitala Imago eft elettionu : vu tota penes Re- 
\em. N*m vacant e Zpijcofattt, Rex cum cedicillu, licentiam eligendi 
continentibus, ftiwl tranfmittit nomen ejus qaem eligi cupiat.^ Abouc 
which he cites Bttrhiil, iljon,&c. 

i The Doftrine of Grotius againft a Legiflative Power in the 
Church you heard before. The Dodrine of the Church of England 
you may findc, Anicl.6. & An. 22. The words are thefe HoIy 
Scripture containeth all things neceffary to falvation : fo that what- 
foever is not read therein, nor may be proved thereby, is not to be 
required of any man, that it (hould be believed as an Article of the 
faith or to be thought requifite or neceflary to falvation.] And 
Art.22. QWhen (General Councils) be gathered together, for as 
much as they be an Affembly of men whereof all be not governed 
with the Spirit and W x ord of God, they may erre, and_fometime 
have erred, even in things pertaining unto God : Whereiore things 
ordained by them, as neceflary to falvation, have neither ftrength 
nor authority, uniefsitmay be declared, that they be taken out at 

holy Scripture.] 

It were tedious to cite what ProteftantEpifco-pall Divines fay t 
this point. I will only cite one, D r Sat live de Condi. l.2.c.$. Where 
he laies down this Pofition, [_Non omnia conciliorptm decreta de facrx 
Ecclefa winiftris, & eorum Officix Ecclefiaque Ctremoniis & Ritibw, 
Chriftianos neceffario ligare.~] Prob. I . Non ligant qi*& novas infti- 
tunnt Del cdendi forwttlas&c. At in aftx ConciHorttm muita funt 
tins venerifdecreta. &M ergo Chriftianw centra Chriftian<& libertatu 
lerefeufeobligarifinat? 2. Non ligantjdque multo magi*, q HA refttg- 
HAttt verbo De *,& C. 3 * Non erant imponendt leges cnerofafxper cervices 
Chriftianorttm, Mat. 1 1 . A&. 1 5 . Btijvfwodi ergo onerofM leges excuti 
pc$e,nemo non vidst. 4.Chriftw nos liber Avit afervitttte tradirionum & 
tei*m hHMananimfrt.cuJHfinQdipltira concilioru mfanttioKihwfirman- 
tur. 5 . Omnia in Ecclefia ad edificationem fieri debent. Si ergo aliqua 
Conciliorttmftttittafcanddlo funt Chriftianxjolli debent. Si laquevnu 
injicinntconfcientiM, diflolvendaftint. Si inutile effe deprckenduntur, 
& minime decora^akjicienda. Neqtte fane duhium eft c^um Ecclefia Rc- 
nta*& Canones de Ceremonies, & Ecclefia Miniftromm cdibatu, & 
bttjtifwodi, valde fint captiofi & onerofi & inutiles. .6 . More s Ecclefa 
Christian* oftendunt omnia Canonttw decreta licet alioqni juftanonfew- 


Atqut hoc -ex wultarjtm hgum enttmeraiiwe viacre licet. 
( See the inftances.) 7. Pttres Ecclefa ncn wwia Csr.ciliorKmftatuta 
(See the precis.) 8. JffaSjnagogaRwtfina, licet 


altos adftattttcrtiw Quorum obfervaticnem fftringtre cxfiat ; fri 
taw en Concilkrftntftatuta ncn fervat. 9. Ratio Jocct 3 mtttanda effg <vcl 
qua ncn decent, vel non frofant, vel qua were/a & captiofa eJJ e inci- 
{?l#f,&c.3 So for D r ^SWr^T, Much m ore might be laid to this Ob- 
jed:ion. Some will marvell that I fay fo much to thefe men. Let fuch 
know that I am not of their miride that defpife all the Epifcopall men, 
as fitter to berejeded then united with. Many of them are Godly 
and Learned and Judicious, and deferve the chiefeft room in our 
Affociations. I was defirous alfo to fave the ignorant from the gan 
ger which I forefee. 

Left any fhould miiinterpret what I have here (aid, againft thcfe 
Popifh Objectors, I here profefs, i. That it is far from my intent 
to raife any jealoufies of any pious Epifcopall Divines, as if they 
were Popifh. I fpeak of no other, but that late Generation of Caf* 
fandrian, Grotian Papifts, who think they can do Rome more fervice 
under the name of Proteft ants, by drawing men to Traditions and 
Divifions, then if they fliould declare themfelves French Papifts. I 
have partly told you how to kaow. them. They will difpute as zea- 
louflyasa Proteftant againft the Popes Infallibility, and his being 
above a General Council, bur they can confent to his Primacy, and 
moft of his Dod:rines,efpeeially againft the perfection and Efficiency 
o,f the Scripture. 

2. I do not fpeak againft mens feeking a Reconciliation with Rome r 
on juft and honeft terms.- I think it one of the happieft works in the 
world,could it be accomplifhed : And I think the French ^are the only 
people to be fir ft deak with to that end. And I long to fee providence 
fo turn things about, as that there might be a Council firft of thefe 
two Nations for the attempting of fuch a work. And I am paft 
doubt, that it would be the happieft way to pull down Antichrift (if 
the Pope be he) that hath been yet of late undertaken. But if ever 
fuch a thing be accomplifhed, it muft be by Uniting in one Creed, 
as containing all things fufficient to falvation ; which muft be wholly 
taken out of Scripture, and not fuch as the Trent Come/lion is: 
Upon which Agreement they may openly acknowledge each other 
for Brethren and true Churches, without compelling each other to 
Uniformity in the leffcr matters, but bearing with each others diffe 



fences, I wih England fuch Rulers as will faithfully profeeute fuch 
aPacifkk er^rprife, without finfull compliance, and betraying of 
the Truth. Though I confefs, when I confider their Principles and 
Practices, I am afraid Bifhop Ball is in the right, that There s no 
Peace with Rome : Yet no fears muft hinder men from any juft and 
neceflary Enterprise. 

3 . I folemnly profefs that I have no defire by this our Aiiociating, 
to advance any parties, or carnall Interefts ; but meerly that all god 
ly, faithfull, Orthodox Minifters, may join together, to guide their 
Flocks in thefe licentious daies, left through our Divifioiis they be 
made a Prey. And alfo that fo much of Difcipline may be Unani- 
moufly exerdfed as we are all agreed in, left our Congregations be 
a reproach through their pollutions; and men fhould forget the 
true nature of Chnftianity, and we have all laid waft, or overgrown 
with weeds, while the hedge lieth down. Nor do I pretend to an 
ability of afluring the world, whether Epifcopaoy, Presbytery or 
what elfe is the right way of Government : though i am more per- 
fwaded every day, that die Truth muft be gathered from the feveral 
parties, who each of them hold a part of it in peculiar. But my con 
ceits in thefe matters, I have no call to open to the world yet, which 
I perceive not likely much to regard them, as perhaps they do not 
deferve it. 

Laftly, Underftand that it is not only thofe that differ in Govern 
ment that we defire (hould Unite with us : but alfo thofe that differ 
in DoArines, fo they be fueh as can heartily fubfcnbe our Profeflion, 
and will manage their differences in Peace and Love. I need not name 
any parties, feeing it is difcernable by our Agreement, whom we do 


Only let all know, That the Able, Godly, Faithful! and Peaceable 
of all thefe forts, we heartily defire to unite with as Brethren: but 
the Inefficient, Ungodly, Unfaithfull,Unpeaceable, we do difclaim,of 
\yhat Opinion, Side or Party foever they be. 

IShalfconclude with this humble Requeft to all my Brethren in the 
Miniftry, In the Name of our great Lqrd and Matter, that they 
would forget air former injuries and differences fo far, as prefently 
to addreffe themfelves to feek Peace and Reconciliation : And to that 
end that they would here and in alLCountreys prefently enter -into 
fome fraternal! Affociations ; and there meekly and felf-denyingly 
to fetthemfeives with one hea-rt and foul to carry on Chrifb work io 

2 far 


far as we are agreed. Why Sir?, have not Independents, Presbyteri 
ans, EpifcopalJ, &c. One God, One Chrift, One Spirit, One Creed, 
One Scripture, One hope of everlafting life ? Are oar difagreements 
Jo great chat we may not live together in love, and clofe in fraternal! 
union and amity ? Are we not of one Religion ? Do we differ in fun 
damentals or fubftantials ? Will not confcience worry us ? Will not 
Pofterity curfe us; if by our divifions we betray the Go/pel into the 
hands of the Enemies? And if by our mutual! envyings and jealou- 
fies and perverfe zeal for our feverall conceits, we fliould keep open 
the breach for ail herefies ai?d wickednefle to enter, and make a prey 
of our poor peoples fouls : Brethren, you fee other bonds are loofed, 
Satan will make his advantage of riiefe daies of Licendoufneffe : Lee 
us ftraiten the bond of Chrittian Unity and Love, and help each c- 
ther againft the powers of hell, and joyn our Forces again!} our com 
mon Enemy. Have you not had yet time and means enough to ob- 
ferve how God hath been offended with your unpeaceable proceed 
ings ? feeking to oppreffe and fubdue each other by force, rather 
then to win each other by love and Evidence of truth ? The Epifco- 
pail party when they were up, making that fad havock of the Church 
by the perfecution of their brethren, which this land is like to lament 
yet longer : The Presbyterians when they were up, feeking their c- 
jed:ion too rafhly, without fufficient means of fatisfaftion What 
fhould I rip up the faults of others which the Sun hath feen, and the 
world rings of? Truly Brethren I fpeak it that we may all be hum 
bled, and go weeping together in feeking the Lord with our faces Zi- 
<w-ward, faying, Come, let us joyn our felves to the Lord in a per- 
petuall Covenant that (hall not be forgotten, fer. 50.4,5,6. I would 
not open our fhame, were it not neceflary to our humiliation and re 
formation : But the world knows it already. As God tels-us of ir, 
fo the railing, malicious, infulting enemies tell us of it. Have not 
fome of you ib led the way in fecret or open vilifying, deriding, con 
temning and afperfmg your brethren, that thereby you, even you, 
have been the means of railing thofe calumnies that you cannot al 
lay ; and have put thofe words into the mouths of the wicked, which 
they daily belch forth to the pleafing of the devil, the grieving of 
all lovers of holinefife and peace, and the undoing of their own fouls, 
fo bitterly and fcornruily have ufed the name of an Independent, that 
the mott Reverend, and Learned, and godly of that way, do with 
the multitude lie under fuch contempt, that they are the leffe capable 
of fucceffeiul fer ving God in their places ; fo reproachfully and con 


temptuoufly have others ufed the name of a Presbyterian, that they 
have railed by it that (corn in the multitude of feduced ones, which 
will prove a fnare to many a ioul, and "which thefe Churches may 
have caufe to bewail while there is a tongue to mention it. Yea, feme 
have ventured into the Throne of God to iearch the hearts of a Na 
tion, and in filth auditories, and with fuch language to proclaim their 
pretended diicoveries, as 1 am afhamed to exprefle : and when they 
have done to print it, that there may not be wanting a wicnefle of 
their fin. Alas, it is .pad deniall, that you have oceafioned thofe hel- 
lifh reproaches, which the Satanical Mercuries do daily proclaim in 
the ears of the world ; So that a man of another Nation cannot reade 
the reports of Civill or Military affairs in England., or Scotland^ but 
he muft reade it intermixed with the Accuiations, Reproaches, and 
Slanders of th e Brethren. I will not now go fo near the quick, as to 
meddle with matters of bioud, even the bloud of confefTed Saints, in 
which we little thought ten years ago, that fuch (hould have had .a 
hand, as have openly owned it to God and men: Only I will fay, 
Theie things mult fit cloic to feme mens confciences : But this I would 
ferioufly have you eonfider, whether the fearfull danger that the Go- 
fpel and Chriftian caufe is in this day, be not principally occafioned 
by your divifions, emulations and contentions ? And if it fhould fall 
out (which God prevent; chat Academies and Miniftry be caft down, 
that Popery be let in, that the power ofgodlinefle be fwallowed up 
by fchifmes and prophanefle ;. Will not your names be the firft in the 
curfe ? Who knows not that the divifions of the Paftors leade the 
people into divifions ? yea, and that they are as backward yet as al- 
moft any to heal them ? In all this I exclude not my felf ; Though I 
can truly fay, that I alway loved peace, and hated cenibrious divi 
ding ; yet I unfeignedly bewail (and confeffe my fin before God 
and the world ) that I did love the one and hate the other no more, 
that ever I did fo much againft peace and no more for it. O Brethren, 
it s we that leade the way to divifion that muft found the retreat, and 
jointly leade the way to reconciliation. We have no other way iefc 
to heal our wounded confciences, and hide our fin and fhame (under 
JelusChnft:) We have no other way to revive the hopes of the 
Churches, now they feem to be ready to gafp their laft ; nor yet to 
refcue the fowls of our poor people who are fome of them ready to 
turn Papifts, as foon as liberty hath opened the door wide enough 
for the Pnetts and Jeluites to be familiar among them : and the reft 
f them are ready to think ail Religion to be uncertain,or vain while. 



they fee fo many. In the name of God Brethren, return, and fpeedi- 
ly and zealoufly return to Unity and Peace : Send abroa d toonean- 
other,and ftir up the dull, and invite the backward, and draw on the 
prejudiced and negligent to this work. Alas Brethren, it is greater 
more difficult, and more biefTed work,then to be done with idle wifh- 
ing and fitting ftill. Have you forgotten your Matters fheep-mark ? 
\_By tkx-fhdli all wen know that ye are my Difciples if ye love one ano 
ther :^] Have you forgotten the Spirits charge, Ifitbe poJJibleas 
much as injoxllcth, live peaceably with all men, And Follow peace with 
all men ? To receive it when it s thruft upon you is not following it 
and yet happy England, if ail would do fo : Alas, that ever men that 
men that make fo much conference of praying, hearing, reading , Sa- 
cramcnts,fhould make no more confcience of their duties for the peace 
of the Church ? When Chriil hath fo frequently, fo plainly, fo pier- 

; cingly inculcated, Love, Peace,over and over, as he hath done, and 
yet that Chnftians,yea,Minifters do fo ftrangely overlook them ; and 
reade them as if they read them not : When the Lord hath placed fo 
much of the very nature of Chriftianity in it, and made it fo necefla- 
rytoourveryfalvation, that yet we fhouid paffe it over fo lightly 
and with fo little obfervation : O whathypocrifie ! what felt-con 
demning is it for to cry out of the divifions and fchifmes of the times 
as moft do, and when we have done to fit ftill when we fhouid endea 
vour to heal them, and when we that have" made the breach fhouid 
make it up. Divifion and want of love is a fin that all men are ready 
to blame in others, and exclaim of in the generall : and yet that we 
fhouid be fo deeply guilty our felves, as if we had not run far enough 
in the guilt already: Alas Brethren, are not the effects ojfour fmne 
before our eyes which way ever we look ? into City, Countrey, into 
Parliament that late was, and into the Army, into men of all forts 
and degrees? and is it not time to return? Again therefore I be- 
feech you make out after Union and Reconciliation. And to that 
end get all together, and keep conftant meetings in Affiliations. Moft 
jealoufies and jarrings are occafioned by ftrangenefs and di&ance 
When you- hear men fpoken evil of, and do not hear them fpeak for 

themfelves. Familiarity "would much further the cure of differences : 
Devils and wicked men can agree in evil doing , and goe hand 
in hand in fin ; and fhall not we unite in the work of Godl What 
we 1 thadook to live in heaven together, and there to be employed 
all in one bielTed frork of praifing"ihe living and moft bldftd God ? 

: Will it do you gcrod then to remember your itrangeneffe and differ^ 


tions now ? For my part I dailyjook death in the face, and live in a 
conftant expectation of my change, and therefore have the better 
advantage to be faithfull to my conicience, and I muft needs profefle 
that when I look back upon my life I have more comfort in the leaft 
means that everlufed for the Churches peace, then in all mymoft 
zealous contentious Engagements. I am confident Brethren, you 
fcarce know the work that will more comfort you in the review, 
then to be fpeedy and diligent in the ufing of your wit, ftrengch, 
power and incereft for the Union and Reformation of thefe diftraded 
Churches : Shall it be faid (.alas, too truly ) that Separates will ride 
and run and lay out all their pains imweanedly to divide the Church, 

. and chat we will not do half ib much to heal it and unite it ? Our cfiice 
is to be builders, and building is conjoyning, and demolishing and 
destroying is dividing. I coniefTe k is a work of exceeding difficulty, 
to bring even the belt to be of one minde : VVe are of fuch various 
intellectual! complexions and ftatures, and all fo imperfect in know 
ledge, and they that do know are fo unable to convey their know 
ledge to their prejudiced, iiiiftudied, unprepared brethren, or to make; 
fuch impreilion on other men s underftandings, as is neceflary to their 
conviction, that it is no wonder if Agreement be a difficult thing. Be- 
fides, miftakes once received do fo infmuate into the very will, and 
do fo ftrangeiy multiply, and engage men before they are aware to 
maintain them, and errour ( as all fin ) is of fuch a deceitfull nature, 
feeming to be the belt when it is the worft, and aiwaies coming under, 
the pretence of its contrary, and the great deceiver is fo skillfull and 
diligent, to fet out his wares to the belt advantage, that it is no won 
der if the Churches Teachers be perverted. Befides this, men are of 

fuch difference in the ftrength or their naturall parts, and alfo do fo 
differ in the advantages of improving them, and fome iludy To hard 
and fome fo little, that it is no wonder if there be almoft as many 
mindes as men. Some alfo have fuch paffions to pervert their under 
ftandings, and fome have fuch ftrong temptations and carnal! inte- 
refts, and fo many falfe hearts are ready to creep into the beft Af- 
femblies, that it is no wonder if dividing be eafier then uniting. 
Yea, ( which is the core of ail our mifery ) there is in moft of us 
fo much pride aud falfe efiimation of our own conceptions, that it is 
not the fmalieft difficulty to convince us of our ignorance, and to 
make us know how little we know ; yea, fuch proud fpirits will quar 
rel! with the light, becaufe it came not originally from their candle ; ; 
and let the choiceit difcoveries be fent from heaven to them,they will . 



contemn them becaufe they are brought them by another mans hand; 
and if the only way of Agreement be propounded by another, they 
will eavill or difieht, or envy it becauie themfelves were not the mo- 
tionersor authours. There is no agreement with thofe men where 
pride is unmortified : For be they never fo unable or unwilling to do 
the work themielves, yet will they hinder another in doing it. But 
Brethren, the more difficult this work of agreement is, the more in- 
duftrioully and reiblvedly fhould we fet our felves to leek it. Diffi 
culties that amount not to Impollibilities, (hould quicken and not 
difcourage, where the work is of necefiky as ours is. I ferioufly pro- 
feffe that I often wonder how men, learned men, godly men, can 
maintain fo much feeming peace with God, and their own confcien- 
ces, who do fo little for the Churches peace : and how they can ever 
hope to die in peace that fhidy no more to live in peace ? If withoue 
hoiinefTe here there be no hope of holinefle or happineife hereafter, 
how can there be any hopes of everlafting peace to thofe that do not 
here value and purfue peace ? What I Preachers of the Gofpel ? and 
yet forget their Matters name ! The King of S a/em, the prince of 
J peace,~} and forget the Gofpeis nature and title Q to be, The meffage 
of Peace ;] and rorget their own office which is to be Q The Meffen- 

fers ofTcace^nd forget the title of that way which they muft preach 
The way of Peace ; J and forget that it is the defcription of the wic- 
Ked [_ The way of -peace they have not known ; and to forget that it is 
their curfe Q There is nofeace to the kicked and to forget that great 
benediction of our Lord, \_Bleffedare the Peace-makers,^] yea, and to 
forget the tenour of our hnall fentence They fiatt enter into Peace ;] 
and the nature of our everlafting inheritance, what abfurdities are 
allthefe? how inconfiftent with that calling which we profeflfe and 
do pretend to ? 

But I know there is none of us fuch enemies to peace, but we would 
be content to have itfoit be upon our own terms If all men will 
take up their opinions, and ftoop to their wils, what men fo wicked 
but would yield to peace ? But is that feeking for it, and denying our 
felves for it, andciofing inChrift, the common center? All that I 
will fay more to you, (hall be in thefe following Prognofticks, which 
do aifo intimate the impediments and difficulties, and do point ouc 
our own duties. 

In general!, I am confident if this be Gods feafon for the rettoring 
of his Church, it will be his feafon alfo for the uniting of his people : 
And le-t aU the dividers know, that they labour in vain while they 



think to reftore the Church by any other means then the loving, ami 
cable clofure of the members ; Nay, they demoliih and deftroy, 
while they dream that they are building ; Sion is not built by the 
^f/rconftifions. If God divide our Language he will blaft our 

More particularly I do foretell you that ( for the way to peace ) 

1. Whenever God means to reftore and build his Church in peace, 
he will open the eyes of his people to fee the necefiity, excellency, 
and glory of peace, and give them fuch deep apprehenfions of this, 
that they will wonder that they were before fo blinded as to over 
look it. 

2. He will (to that end) make them reade more ferioufly and with 
obfervation thofe Texts of Scripture , which before they dipt o- 
ver and felt no force or favour in : fo that they fhall wonder how 
they could fo overlook fuch ferious precepts, and fuch clear difcove- 
riesof their Matters will : fuch as i Cor. i. 10,11. &e. and 3. 3,4. 
^^,16.17,18. T/7//.3. 15,16. 1^/5.13,14,15. fpecially Rom.i$. 
1,2,3,4,5,6,7. and 14. i. drc. Jam. 3. 17, 18. i Cor. 12. 12. &c-. 
Mat. 5.9. GW. 6,1. Rom. 12. 9,10,15,16,17,18. to theend. OthaC 
thefe few verfes of this Chapter were butconfcionably practifed even 
by the eminent Leaders of the Flock of Chrift. 

i 3 .When God will do this great work,he will wonderfully convince 
his people of the iinfulnefTe of their divifions, and of that perverfc 
emulation and zeal which they were wont to entitle God himfelf to, 
and to glory in as a part of their chiefeft duty : They (hall no more 
reproach one another, and lie vilifying their Brethren behinde their 
backs, and one fay [It s all long of thefe Independents, 3 and ano 
ther QT his we may thank the Presbyterians for, ] and a third The 
Prelaticall Conformifts did all this : But they (hall fee that we were 
all too blame, and every man fhall acknowledge his unpeaceable mi 
carriages, and heartily lament them before the Lord, and loath them- 
felves for all their emulations, 

4. Yea, when God will do this work, he will make his people feel 
an indifpenftble obligation lying on them, to feek peace, and pnrfue 
it ; fo that they fhall be no more able to reft with quiet conferences 
till they have fent to one another, eonfefled their mifcarriages r and 
defired reconciliation and conftant AfTociations for the unanimous 
carrying on the work of Chrift, then now they can reft in peace of 
confcience without Preaching ,Praying, or any other duty. 

5, Yea, God will poflelTe them with fuch a Love to Peace, and 

R fuch 

iuch a Fervent Zeale for it, that they fhall fet themfelves with all 
their might to obtain it ; and they that now can hardly be drawn to 
accept of it when it is thruft into their hands, fhall then follow it as 
thriftily and importunately, as the moft zealous dividers are now fet on 
the propagation of their opinions, or rather as the moft zealous god 
ly Preacher doth thirft after the winning and faving of fouls : And as 
the zealous Reformers in Luther s daies were let againft Popery, and 
the zealous Hon-Conformifts in Qneen Elizabeth and King f#me/s 
daies, and alfo before this late Parliament were fet againft Bifhops 
and Ceremonies, fothat theyreftlefly profecuted their work till it 
was accomplilhed, fo (hall the Reftorers of the Church be as zea- 
ioufly fet for the Reconciling of differences, and the union and affect 
ation of Paftors and of Churches. 

6. \ ea God will raife in his people fuch deep apprehenfions of the 
jhainous wickednefs of dividing principles and pradifes ( which are 
now accounted ads of piety) that they fhall not make a light matter 
of them any more : But Chriftians fhall think and fpeak of Divifions 
and Emulations, and breaking into parties, as now they think and 
fpeak of Theft, Whoredom, Murder, or fuch like. 

7. Yea God will caufe his people to deteft the very Names of Di- 
Vifion, and lay them by as occafions and badges of our difagreement. 
And I think Efifhaniw and Attftins and others long Lifts of Herefies 
will not be in fo good efteem as they are at this day. For though the 
fchifme will be more abhorred, yet it will not be every fuch difference 
in Judgement, as fome of theirs, that will be taken fora fufficient 
ground to call a man a Heretick. 

8. Moreover, when God will reftore his Church, he will give meek 
and humble fpirits to his people, and take down much of that pride 
which now caufeth and continueth our Divifions : Thofe proud men 
that now value their Reputation and carnall interefts before the 
Churches Unity, and Reformation ; that fo value their own under- 
Handings, that they think contemptuoufly of other mens ; fhall then 
be lo.w in their own eyes,and prefer their Brethren before themfelves. 
The pride of Chriftians, efpecially of Minifters, is now the main im 
pediment to our Union : This curfed fin makes men look with an 
envious eye at every Brother that is efteemed above them, and (as 
shey think) doth cloud them in the eyes of the people: It makes 
Minifters feek after applaufe, and makes them impatient of flighting 
and difefteem : And while they are driving who fhall tiave the great 
er party, they are engaged in Diviiion before they are aware: For 

Setting that (while they think they are labouring for Chrift) 
9 but fiih for themfelves, and draw men from Chrift by drawing 
them from Unity. It is this pride that makes men fo froward in car 
rying on- any work of God, that unlefs themfelves may have the glo* 
ryot it, or it may be done their way, they will quarrel and break it 
ail in pieces : as if they had rather Chrift had no Church, then them 
felves (hould be denied an honourable ftation in it : or as if they had 
rather Chrifts work fhould be undone, then done without them, or 
contrary to their conceits. God will turn this devilifh diftemper into 
humility and feif-denial, when his work (hall be done. He will make 
his people bafe in their own eyes, and glad to be flighted, vilified and 
laid by,fo it might but conduce to the Unity and Peace of the Church, 
and the furthering of Reformation, As Clemens Roman, fid Corinth. 
faith, p<*g.69 He therefore that is ftrong, mercifull, full of charity 
among you, let him fay, Qlf it be for me, that Sedition, Contention 
and Divifions arife, I will depart, Tie be gone whither you will; I 
will do what the people command me, fo be it that the Flock of Chrift 
may live in Peace with thofe Presbyters that are fet over them.] He 
that fhall do this,will win himfelf much honour in the Lord ; and eve 
ry place will gladly receive him.] 

9. Yea God will caufe men to abhorre that cenforioufnefs of their 
Brethren,and thofe fecret defires to deftroy their reputations, which 
are the fruit of this Pride. So that they who now are queftioning 
every mans (Incerity that doth not pleafe them, and making the worii 
of every mans actions and fpeeches, (hall then cover mens infirmi- 
ties by that charity which thinketh not and fpeaketh not evil, which 
envieth not, and is not puffed up : And they (hall be fo confeious 
of their own faults and frailties, as that it fhall conftrain them to 
tendernefs and companion on their Brethren, and to judge the beff 
till they know the worft j and they (hall learn to hear a cenfurer and 
backbiter with as much indignation as now they hear a fwearer or 
a lier. 

10. Yea God will take them off from all their engagements to par 
ties, and let them perceive that the very names of parties are a diftio* 
nour to the Church ; and that Chriftians (hould not think of a party^ 
but as a man thinks of his wounds ; with fmart and forrow. 

1 1. Alfo when this blefled work of healing (hall be Wrought, 
God will (hew his people the (infulnefs of that zeal for inferiour par 
ticular opinions ( true or falfe ) which makes them think that they 
ought to do many things againft the Churches Unity and Peace. He 

R z will 

will (hew them that it is a perverfe zeal which ehoofeth the propaga 
tion of a fmaller point, before the edification of the body, and the 
propagation of the fubftance of the Chriftian faith which by that 
courfe is apparently hindrcd. 

12, Yea God will open their eyes to fee the difficulties of thofe 
lower Controverfies which they infifted on, till rheir high confidence 
in their opinions be abated, fo as that they ihall pity themfelves and 
the reft of mankinde, for our unavoidable darknefs and weaknefs ; 
and not contemn, caft off, or divide from thofe that differ from 

1 3 .For God will let men fee that it is the fubflance of Chriftianity 
that Chriftians muft -Center and "Unite in ; and he will teach them to 
take thofe for Brethren that hold that fubftance, though they differ in 
feveral inferiour things. 

14. And God will teach his people to be hereafter lefs cruel and 
proud, then to impofe new Articles of faith upon their Brethren 
and to put their own Interpretations into their Creed : He will teach 
tnen to be more mercifull to the Church then to load her with Canons 
and Conftitutions of men, containing unnecefTary dividing determi 
nations ; and feeking to force all to their obedience. 

15. For whenever God intendeth Peace and Unity to his Church 
es, he will caufe men freely to give his Word the honour of its fuffi- 
ciency, and to take it for a per fed Rule of Faith and Worfhip ; as 
that which hath left nothing undetermined which was fit for a ftated 
univerfalldetermination : And therefore men (hall fee the vanity, 
yea the finfulnefs of mens undertaking to determine by Canons what 
God thought not fit to determine in his Laws : except only for the 
oceafional determining of that in particular which God hath deter 
mined only in generall, and directed man by his Rules how to de 
termine in fpecial : which therefore maft not be by a fixed univerfal 
Determination ( for then God would have done it himfelr") but by 
a temporary determination, to be changed as occafions fhall require ; 
and therefore in moft things to be left to the particular Churchl 
guides, who arc upon the place, and imployed in the work. Alfo 
God will teach men to take the Scripture for Sufficient in matter ef 
Belief: and to fcrew men no higher, not adding their fuperntimera- 
ry Articles, as the Council of Trent, no nor putting a word among 
their Fundamentals as neceffary which is not in the Scripture. Wliac 
hope of Union when there is no Uniting Rule or Center agreed on ? 
Andean the Papifts, or any other overdoing zealots, imagine, that 


ever Gods univerfall Church will agree upon any Rule or Center 
as fufficient befides the Scripture ? or ever depart from its fuffi- 
ciency ? 

1 6. Laftly, If God intend Peace, he will (likely) fit his provi 
dences to advantage it. He will give preparing feafons and accom 
modations. Three great difadrantages to the Churches Peace and 
Unity, are thefe that fellow, i. Times of Warrc; when mens ears 
are filled with a contrary found, and their mindes alienated, exaf- 
perated, and filled with jealoufies. If men do think that in any for- 
reign Churches there be any thing ami 6 ; how much more Chriftian 
a courfe were it, and probable to fucceed, to debate the cafe in peace, 
tken to fight with them ? 2. It is an unlikely time for agreement, 
when one party is in profperity and power, arid thinks he can have 
his will without condefcending to a loving Chriftian debating of our 
differences : Mans proud corrupt heart, will hardly be taken off from 
the ufing of his carnal weapons and advantages: but will think that 
God puts fuch power and opportunities into his hand, for* the pro 
moting of his particular opinions and waies, by force, and not by fa- 
tisfying the unfatisfied. 3. Another difadvantage is, ignorant or 
wicked Magiftrates in the Sovereignty : who either underftand not 
the waies of the Lord, or elfe hate them, and would undermine 
them ; either, as Julian, by giving every party a liberty of conten 
ding, and of publishing their delufions , and denying openly the 
Foundation ; and working on the poor people^ who are ufually ea- 
filier taken with confident fpeeches then with folid reafonings : Or 
elfe (on the other extream ) to ufe a foolifh violence, with thofe 
that diflent in inferiour things ; and to become a difeouragement to 
true piety and tendernefs of Confeience. The later we have felt for 
merly ; the former we have felt lately and fear yet more. But whac 
God may yet do upon this change of our Government, we cannot 
tell : Let all that love the Churches Peace and welfare pray /That our 
Rulers may avoid thefe two deftroying extreams, of giving too much 
Liberty, or toe little. 

You fee, Brethren, there s many things to be done, and great 
changes to be made on the hearts of the belt, before the Church of 
Chrift is like to be reftored by Unity and Peace. Yet God can do alt 
this in a moment, when. his time is come. O.fet to the work, that we 
may fee that our deliverance is at hand. I think you have now as fit a 
feafon in one refped,as ever you had : When you had the advantage 
of fuperiority and iecuiar Power, your ears were ftopt, your hearts 

R 3 were 

were burdened, yaw thought you had & fpeedier way to fetdement, 
then by fatisfying Diffemers, and condescending to thofe Brethren, 
whom you were readier to contemn. But now God hath either laid 
you all under hatches together, or left you no affurance of your car 
nal advantages. Thofe Martyrs could agree in the Prifon, and ac 
the ftake, that differed about Ceremonies in their profperity. If God 
give you not hearts to hearken to this counfel, and Agree now I 
{ball exped to hear that you are brought much lower, andconjoyn- 
ed in that mifery where you (hall be forced to agree ; and then you 
wiH look back on your proud Dtvifions with fhame and forrow. 

I do therefore in the Name of Chrift intreat, not only the people 
of this Congregation to Unite ; but all the Godly, Able Minilters in 
this County to AfTociate with us ; of what Party foever they have 
been. And 1 do let them know, that we are not fo fetled in oiar pre- 
fent Opinions or Waies, but that if they fee any thing amifs in our 
Agreement or our courfes, we (hall be ready to hear any thing that 
can be faid for our Information and alteration. And if the zeal for 
their own Parties and Waies fhould keep them off, let me advife them 
to be more zealous for the welfare of tjiq Church in generall, and t 
take heed leaft our divifions do prepare our people for Popery, or f aft en 
them in ungodliness : and I dare allure them, That if Epi/copacy,Pref- 
bytery or Independency ,&c.be indeed the Way of God ,t hen M no Way in the 
Vvorldfo likely to fet tt up, as the V nit ing and loving Association of the 
^Papers ; Where all things may he gently and amicably debated, 

And I defire that our Brethren in other Counties would take the 
fame courfe : Not that I dare urge them to unite juft on the terms of 
our Proportions or Profeflion, if they have better before them. -Yec 
I will fay this : That I admire Gods good providence in facilitating 
our confent herein, fo happily in this County : and that it will be 
found,upon trial, a matter of great difficulty, to bring even Wife and 
Godly men to agree on the drawing up of Forms : and I ferioufiy 
profefs, that if I had known where to have found but this much done 
to our hands, I would not have confented that any of us fhould have 
attempted to draw up a new and different Modell ; but have the more 
gladly received it, becaufe the Union would have been more full. But 
ts foon as we fee our own weaknefles or miftakes Correded by any 
more perfed: Way of our Brethen abroad, we fhall accept their In- 
ftrudions, and Corred them our fetyes. In the mean time, we (hall 
rather do thus, then nothing. 

Finitar JMaij 2 1653. 


fio 7 ) 

Am urged t adde to what is written, a few words 
of Advice to the People of thofe Congregations 
whofc Minifters refufe to Aflbciate. Either fuch Mi- 
nifters are Inefficient or Scandalous, or they are (or 
feem) Able and Faithfull. If the former, I advife all 
confcionable people to endeavour fpeedily to caft 
them out, and not think of joyning them with us who cannot re 
ceive them. I know fome will plead compaffion to them ; but it s 
cruel companion, which for fear of bringing a mans family to po 
verty, will both connive at his proceeding in fuch hainous guilt, and 
at the ftarving, and everlafting damnation of mens fouls. The devil 
loves fuch mercy as this is. If indeed you pity fuch, help them, if you 
can, to a fight of their fin, in undertaking fo high a Calling, and 
fo great a Charge, which they are fo unfit for : that they may break 
off their fin by Repentance, and betake themfelves to a work thae 
they are fitter for. Obj- But may not Minifters, as well as others, 
beforborn upon their Repentance? Anf. i. Repentance will not 
cure their Inefficiency. 2. It muft be a very notable Repentance 
that muft at all ( much lefs fuddenly) readmit a fcandalous perfon 
into the Miniftry. In the Primitive Churches, after hainous finning, 
they would admit him to the Miniftry no more, were he never fo pe 
nitent, though they would admit him to Communion. However, let 
him be caft out of the Miniftry, and Repent then ; and if he manifeft 
fuch Repentance as may fatisfie the Church, let them then take him 
in again, there or elfewhere : But fhall he therefore be trufted in his 
forfeited Office, where he may wrong mens fouls, becaufe when he 
isqueftioned, he pretendeth Repentance? Obj. But how can any- 
other confcionably receive his fequeftred maintenance, when by Law; 
it is his ? Anf. Is it not given him only as Paftor, for the Work of 
Chrift, and the fervice of the Church ? If there be 2OO 1 per annum 
allowed to each City for a publick Phyfician, and fome ignorant 
Empericks get into the place, who kill more then they cure, Were not 
he cruelly mercifull that would have thefe men continue to the mur 

dering of poor people whom they pretend to cure > and were not he 
wickedly and hypocritically juft, that would fay, No man elfe may 
take the (Upend, it belongs to thefe > If an ignorant man that is 
wholly unacquainted with Seafaring, fhould get to be the Pilot of a 
Ship of Warre, or of richeft lading, would any be fo madly merci- 
full or juft, as to let him alone to the drowning of himfelf and all that 
are with him, for fear of putting him out of his place, or giving his 
maintenance to another? I will give fach titular Paftors better ad 
vice : and that is r That they would lament day and night, as long as 
they live, the heavy guilt of the blood or damnation of fouls which 
they have incurred, and that fo far as they are able, they would make 
the. Church reftitution of the Tithes which for fo many years they 
have fo unjuftly received ; it being, before God, but plain Robbery ; 
and one of the moft hatefull kindes of Robbery that can be imagined ; 
to ftarve and deftroy mens fouls, and then to take hire for it. But 
enough of them. 

2. ButiftheMinifters that refufe to Aflbciate cannot be proved 
Inefficient,, or of wicked lives, then I would advife all their Peace 
able Godly people, to joyn together, and defire their Paftor to 
Aflbciate with his Brethren for a Unanimous carrying on the Work 
of God. If he yet refufe, he will no doubt, give fome reafon of it : 
Which if he do, his people may do well to deiire him, to meet once, 
at leaft y with the Aflbciated Minifters, and give in his Reafons to 
them. This they fhould deiire, both r. Becaufe the people may- 
there hear both fides fpeak together, and fo be the better able to 
judge, whether his Reafons for DifTent be fufficient or not : and 
2. Becaufe Chriftianity and common charity bindes that DifTenting 
Brother to manifeft to the reft what he judgeth to be their Errour, 
and fo great an Errour that he dare not AfTociate with them. And 
it is not a fudden appearance, and flight cafting in fome fuperficial 
Reafons, that muft fatisfie his Confcience, or fatisfie his people : buc 
u muft be a fair and full Debate of the whole bufinefs ; fuch as may 
be apt or fufficient for a manifeftation of the Truth. If after this the 
diffenting Paftor will not yet Aflbciate; the People (having been 
prefent and heard the Debate) may be the better able to judge, whe 
ther the grounds of his Diflent be tollerable or intolerable ; and 
accordingly they may know how to carry themfelves to him. Where 
note, that I can give no people a particular direction before hand, 
tint will fully reach all fuch cafes ; feeing they are fo diverfified by 
circumftances . And therefore I would have all fuch people as have a 



Minifter that declineth Union and AfTociation with his Brethren, to 
defirethe Advice of that AfTociatiori offaithfull Minifters who re 
next him ; who will be beft able to advife them when the cafe is 
known : In the mean time, common Reafon requires that People 
ihould hear and obey fuch a Paftor with more jealoufie then if he 
were in Union with his Brethren, i . Becaufe the judgement of one 
man is not to be valued before the Judgement of many as Godly ; 
unlefs it be fully manifeft that he is of more painfull ftudies, and a 
ftronger Judgement then all thofe are. 2. Chrift doth fo plainly and 
preilingly require Unanimity, Accord, and Aflbciation of Brethren, 
that he that will refufe this fo plain and great a duty, may well be 
iufpeded the more in the reft of his Dodrine. 3 . It is more pro 
bable that that man means to play the Pope and tyrannize over the 
Flock, and make himfelf Lord of Gods heritage,who will do all alone, 
fingularly or on his own head ; then he that doth all in Unity, and is 
ready to give an account of all his doings to the reft of his Brethren, 
and to hear what they can fay againft him. 

But perhaps you will ask, What if we cannot get our Paftor fo 
much as to come to the AfTociated Minifters to give in his Reafons of 
Diflent? I anfwer, Then try whether he will entertain a Debate 
with fome one or two that they (hall fend to him. If he will not da 
that neither, it is too probable, that he is fo Proud or Ignorant, as 
that a People (hould be jealous how they truft him with the guidance 
of their fouls. But yet I would not have fuch raihly to rej ed him,but 
firft advife with the next AfTociated Minifters. 

gueft. But how (hall we judge, if he do come in, whether his 
Reafons be of weight or not ? Anf. Partly by what you hear replied 
to them (and therefore do not content yourfelves to hear them 
from himlelf alone ) and partly by the evidence that they carry. He 
that will prove it his duty not to Aflbciate, muft prove that there is 
fome fin which that Aflbciation would engage him to. If there be 
any fuch fin, it is either fomething unlawfull to be fubfcribed in our 
Agreement ; or fomething to be necefiarily done in pradice. Hear 
him therefore manifefting and proving either of thefe. I can forefee 
the vain cavils that fome are like to ufe, by the experience I have 
long had of the Separatifts arguings. Firft, Perhaps they will tell you 
we have fuch and fuch bad Minifters among us in our AfToaation ; 
and here they will aggravate all the faults of fuch as they except a- 
gainft, as if they were notoriouCygracelefs. To this I would defire 
the Hearers K> return thefe Anfwers. i. That we have agreed to 

S reject 


l-ejeft from our Society all that are of known Infutfkiency,or Un- 
godlinefs, or Unfaithfulnefs in the main work. And if any one get 
in among us, that is guilty of any fcandall, which we were never 
fufficiently acquainted with, we judge it no more our fault, then "it is 
the fault of a Church that an Hypocrite is in it, or a Tinner that none 
accufeth. 2. We had rather of the two erre in judging too favou 
rably, and permitting fome in our fociety that are lefs fit, then in 
judging unrighteoufly, and rejecting the faithfuJl fervants o f Chrift. 
No Society hath all the members of equal integrity, and beyond ex 
ception. 3. Defire thofe Brethren thatObjed this but to fearch 
their hearts and waies, and remember what may be faid againft them- 
felves, and caft the beam firft out of their own eye at leaft to cen- 
fure, as humble men, that are fenfible of their own mifcarriages and 
imperfections ; and how much allowance thebeft mull have, that 
they may pafs for currant. 4. Tell them this, which I think, may 
give them full fatisfadion : If they have any charge againft any 
member of our Aflbciation, let them bring it in, and they fhall be 
fully heard, and we will rejed all whom they ihall prove fit to be 
rejected. Can they defire more? Will men of any Confcience or 
face of common honefty, let fly at men behinde their backs, and not 
bring in their charge to their faces, and hear them fpeakfor them- 
felves : Yea and withdraw from a Society meerly becaufe of the pre- 
fence of fuch, whom they never accufed to that Society? Would 
they be thus dealt by themfelves > If we have bad members, might 
not their prefence who are better, do more then their abfence^o 
remove them, or hinder them from doing any hurt? 5. Take 
heed left out of your own mouthes you be condemned ; whileyou 
" acknowledge that even bad men are forwarder to Reformation and 
Unity then you. 

They will perhaps further tell you, that we do but make a {hew of 
Reformation, and we leave all or many ungodly ones ftili in our 
Churches; they are even common Parifh-Churches, compofed of 
the common multitude, as they were before. 

ex^y. This I have anfwered fufficiently already : Further I fay, 
i. No mans mif-pradice is any reafonable caufe of excepting a- 
gainft our Agreement : The Proportions which we fubfcnbe doe 
exclude as many as I can finde any Scripture warrant for excluding. 
If the Objedors deny this, let them give their reafons againft the 
Propofitions, and not againft any mans pradifing contrary to them. 
Would any wife man fay, I will not fubfcnbe Propofitions for Reforl 



mation, becaufefuch a marwill not reform exaftly that doth fub* 
fcribethern? As if he (hould fay, I will not confent to the Law a- 
gainft fwearing, becaufe fuch a Juftice doth not fninifti Swearers, 
i . Before they withdraw for any mans perfonall fault ( in permitting 
unfit members in his Congregation ) they muft admonifti that perfon 
and convince him of his fault, yea, and convince that aflbciation of 
their fault in not cafting him off, or elfe why (hould they divide front 
an Aflembly for one mans male-adminiftration > Or if all be guilty, 
they muft be dealt with as in cafe of other (ins, before they be reject 
ed. If I know fome of the Congregationall way that admit unfit per- 
fons into their Churches, (hall I for that refufe communion with 
them and others of that way. 3 . We are not to rejed any member 
from our Church-communion that defires it, without Sufficient caufc 
produced againft them. Let thefe Objedors therefore name the par 
ticular perfons who have been proved unfit, and yet been retained ; 
and not for (hame, fpeak of our retaining Parifties, multitudes, the 
ignorant, the ungodly, &c . in generall, when they name no parti- 
culars. As if we muft therefore condemn and punifh men as ungodly, 
without any accufation, meerly becaufe they are many, or becaufe 
fuch men clamour out generall reproaches : The multitude of mem 
bers is one part of the honour of Chriils Churches,as the purity is an* 

Thefe Objections I therefore here anfwer, that people may know, 
they are not fufficient to warrant any Minifter to withdraw from U- 
nity. And again I do ad vife all godly people to confider, thatitcon- 
cerneth them to know the reafons of their Minifters diffent, and to 
be well fatisfied in them : For elfe i. They may be guilty of encou 
raging and following him inaDivifion. 2. It is the Churches as 
well as the Paftors that muft be linked together by thefe Aflociations, 
and therefore feeing it is by the Paftors that they muft ( principally ) 
preferve that Union and correfpondence, the withdrawing of the 
Paftors, tendeth to the dividing of the Churches themfelves. 3 . They 
cannot fafely truft their fouls under a dividing Paftor. And let them 
butobferve when all pretences are taken off, whether with many 
thefe prove not the true caufes of withdrawing ? i. Some men arc 
confcious of fo much ignorance, that they will not joyn with Mini* 
fters, where there is like to be any trial of their parts, for fear of 
being (hamed upon the difclofing of their weaknefs : In a Pulpit they 
may poffibly feem fome body ; but they will not endure a clofer trial. 
Thefe men would do well to learn, that Chriftiaa honour is not got 

S 2 at 


afc other honour is, by contefting or fubtill contriving for it : but 
by an open and humble confeiling of weaknefles : He that will needs 
be greateft, (hall be leaft : and he (hall be greateft that will be the 
lowed and lervant of all. He that will fave his honour (hall lofe it : 
Pride is the greateft (hame among Chriftians. For my part I value 
the youngeft learner that is humble and diligent, above a hundred of 
thefe clofe hypociiticall Rabbles, that have nothing but big looks 
and contempt of others, to cover their ignorance. 

z.Odiers you (hall find,that will withdraw and divide in meer pride 
of their own fuppofed godlinefs, and cenforioufnefs of others, as un 
worthy of their fellowfhip : Thefe are the worft of ail : So contrary is 
it to the true nature of Chriftianity to be proud and cenforious,and to 
fay to our Brother, Stand by ; I am more holy then thou 1 What (in 
liath our Mafter more rebuked and (feamed then pride ami cenforiouf- 
nefs ? There is no obfcurity i-n thofe plain commands : fudge not, that 
je he net judged : who art thou that judge ft another m-ansjervant ? to hi* 
own Mafter he ftandeth or falleth : why doft thou judge thy ^Brother <* 
or V?hj doft thoufet at nought thy Brother ? We foall all ft and before the 
judgement feat of Chrift. Let us not therefore judge one another any 
more,&c. Rom. 14.4,1 0,13. fee Gal. 6.1,2,3,4,5. 

If thefe men be godly indeed, they will be fo humbly confcious of 
their own unworthinefs and great imperfections, that they will be 
readier to draw back on that account, and fay, I am not worthy to 
be AfTociated with Chrifts Minifters : rather then to fay, Such a one 
is not worthy to joyn with me : (except he will come and prove him 
indeed one fit to be rejected.) And truly in my experience 5 they prove 
none of thebeft men themfelves, nor furthett from exception, \vho 
are fo ready to condemn their Brethren as ungodly. How oft have I 
heard one man accufing his Brethren as men void of grace, or chus 
and thus faulty : and within a few daies, heard others as deeply ac 
cufing him, for pride or coveteoufnefs, or ignorant, carelefs Preach 
ing, and negligent, diforderly, rafh, empty performance of Gods 
work ; as a man that doth but difgrace the work of Preaching, and 
make men loath Gods Word, through his ill managing of it. Thus 
frequently do I hear men accufed on both parts : Alas, that men con 
fcious of their 9 wn weakneiTes, (hould not forbear fuch vilifying of 
their Brethren 1 Perhaps one may excel! in Judgement or folidity, 
and another may excel! in zeal and diligence : Muft each therefore 
defpife or rejed die other ? He is a rare man that is generally ex- 

3. Others 

3. Others you will finde will divide, meerlytofit themfelves to 
parties, or to ferve a thriving fide, agamft the unity of the Church : 
Thefe Paftors, if known, are unfit to be owned. 

4. Others will hold off, for fear of difpleafing their ungodly Pa- 
rifhoners, by this exercife of Difcipline that we have agreed on : 
cfpecially if their maintenance lie in the peoples hands : Thefe fer- 
vartts of Mammon are unfit for Chrifts fervice. I confefs it is a great 
temptation to men that have a Family to maintain, to caft themlclves 
on a way that may lofe their Maintenance: But Is he fit to teach others 
the dodrincc of Chriftianity, Self-denial, taking up the Crofs,parting 
with things pre-fent for the hopes of future, &c. who will openly con- 

Qxeft. But put cafe that the people are latisfied of the Minifiers 
Reafons for withdrawing ? 

tAnf. Both he and they muft faithfully propound thofe Reafons 
to the Aflbciated Brethren: i. Elfe how can we that erre be recti 
fied ? 2. If they hear not both fides fpeak, they may eafily be delu- 
ded,and fatisfied in their fin. 

But a greater difficulty occurres then any of thefe. What if a Con 
gregation have the choice of their Paftor, and they cannot agree in 
choofing, but one party will have one man, and another party will 
have another ? How will your Union be carried on^ when the people 
cannot agree about their Teachers? Anf. I confefs I forefee a. fad 
calamity like to befall the generality of the Churches in this point, if 
God do not wonderfully prevent it. For I finde it fuch a difficulty to 
have many men of one minde (even of the beft) that I can hardly 
exped: that ever the people fhould long agree in the choice of their 
Minifters : efpecially if they have divers propounded that may feem 
fit. For the Ancient experienced, or meeker fort of Chriftians will 
te for a man of Solidity, Judgement and Peace : The younger and 
the more rafh, unexperienced ProfefTors, will rather incline to a man 
of Zeal, who is inclined to Divide, and under pretence of further 
Reformation, to fall into unwarrantable feparating waies. And ufu- 
ally, fuch unexperienced people are untra&able, and will have! their 
way, be it never fo wrong : For paflion quite perverts their Judge 
ment : and that pailiox is often indulged rather then fufpcd:ed, be- 
caufe it goes undsr the name of Zeal. You will have alfo carnall fu- 
perftitious perfons, fetting in for a man of their own ftamp, to hu- " 
rnour them ; and fo how many parries may there be ? Efpecially if 
publique Maintenance be taken down, and people allowed to main- 

S 3 tain 

t^m whom they pleafe then moft great Congregations will be ( in 
all likelihood) divided into two or three parties. Or if men grofsly 
erroneous, and intolierable,. fhould by Rulers be put in the publique 
Place, and fo the beft people forced to feparate ( which I ftrongly 
fear ) in all thefe cafes our Union will be difficult. Yea, if people 
grow into a diilike of their Paftors ; and one part would caft him off, 
and the other would continue him : Or if there fliould be two Mini- 
fters together, and part of the people fhould cleave to one, and part 
to the other. What now fhould be done in all thefe cafes > I anfwer, 
Ic is not hard to tell what (hould be done : but it s hard to bring even 

fodly men to do it. I will premife this Prognoftick, That I have little 
ope when I have faid all, to prevail with either the wilfull, felf-con- 
ceited fuperftitious party, or the rafh youth, whofe Zeal doth carry 
them beyond all fober, conftderate, judicious proceedings. But for 
the fake of the reft I will tell them what muft be done. 

I. Firftitmuft be Refolvedon, That the Church muft not be divi 
ded. And therefore in all debates, keep th at Refolution firm. And 
that Minifter or party that is for Dividing, do butdifcover a ftrono 
ground of fufpition, that their Caufe is the worft. All true Paftors 
and Chriftians will be fo tender of the Churches Unity, that they will 
try every preventing ccmrfe, and wait and fuffer much before they 
will yield to the Divifion of a Church. Obj. But if we muft either 
confenttoanunfhPaftor, or Divide, it is not long of us, but of the 
reft. Anfo. There are feveral degrees of fitnefs and unfitnefs : If 
he be one that is utterly incompetent and intolierable, then you muft 
ufe all right means to keep him out : and if you cannot prevail, you 
muft further do, as I (hall anon acquaint you more fully. But if he be 
one that is competently fit,though with many imperfedions,you muft 
do your beft to have a better, but rather accept of him then Divide. 
The Reafon is plain : God hath flatly commanded llnity,and forbid 
den Divifion: but he hath no where forbidden the Accepting of a 
weaker competent Paftor, to prevent fuch divifion. God hath not 
yet provided enough for every Church of the Abler fort, (alas, how 
few are they in comparifon of the reft that yet are hone ft and tolle- 
rablei) If therefore all the weaker muftbecaftoff, then the farrc 
greateft part of the Churches muft be unchurched, or be without 
any Paftors. 

This therefore being firft Refolvedon, That the Church mttft not 

U. divide, you muft fecondly fake this as certain, that God hath net put 
it in the power tftkepe&ple alone, to determine Who fall be their Paftors, 


txceft In cafe of Nece/itj, Vekere his ordinary tyay of Determination 
dotk fail. 

This is fo fully proved by many others i.n Writing already, and it is 
fo contrary to my intended brevity to infift on fuch points,that I fhali 
fay but little. 

Obferve carefully the difference between Eleftion, Determination 
and Confent : Choofing or Ele&ing fometime fignifieth only The 
firft Nomination of one perfon of divers that be offered, though yet 
there may be n Power finally to determine, whether that Perfoh 
fhallftand. Sometime it fignifieth the faid Nomination with Deter 
mination alfo. To Determine is Authoritatively and finally to decide 
the cafe, and fet down, who the man (hall be. To Confent, is but to 
be Willing to have that man who is Eleded or Determined of/ 

Now I affirm i. GodsWordhathleft.it undecided, whether the 
people (hall be the Electors, fo as firft to nominate the man that (hall 
be their Minifter, or not. The Apoftlesdiofe two for JW^room, 
and left God to take one by Lot. The Apoftles required the Church 
at Jerufdem to choofe feven men for Deacons, as fuppofing them 
acquainted with their lives, and, as being loth to put any upon them 3 
in that Office efpecialiy, which medled with money matters. But 
for Elders (for all the (hew from ^#.14.23.) there is no command 
or any thing equivalent,, that the people have the Nomination. 

2. The Power of Authoritative determining who the man fhali 
be, is clearly in Scripture denied to the people. For it is appropri^ 
ted to the Church-Rulers, under the name of Ordaining. For ygSiwp*, 
ufedjTJM-S- e^#.6. 3,d"<r. fignifieth an Authoritative appoint 
ment, which is not a rneer ufelefs Ceremony ( as fome make Ordina 
tion to be, that neceffitate the Ordainer to lay hands on him whom 
the people Eieft ) but comprehended! the Determination that this 
mnft be the man. For my part I believe that it is the Church-Guides 
or Ordainers that have the fole Authoritative Determination, and 
the people have the full and free judgement of Difcretion, to judge 
whether the Ordainer have rightly determined, or not. But if that 
fhould be otherwife, yet ftill it is evident that ordinarily the Ordain* 
ers have a Negative voice ; and that the Church cannot take to them- 
felves a Mmifter without them : Or elfe it would follow,, either che 
Church-Rulers muft Ordain whomfoever the people nominate*; 
( which is not to be imagined ) Or that the people may take - Ghent 
Mimllers unprdaiiTed ( where Ordainers -may be had) which iss T 
vain a conceit. 


Note.alfo, that it is not only to the Office of the Miniftry in Ge* 
neral that Ordination is Neceflary ; but alfo to the fixing of Mini- 
fters to particular Charges. The Apofties Ordained the feven Dea 
cons, as appropriate to the Church of ferf*lem : and Ordained 
them Elders in every Church, Afl. 14.23 . and commanded Titns to 
Ordain Elders in every City, Tit. : i,$. 

Obferve aifo, that though there be fome controverfies whether 
this power belong to a fixed Biftiop, or -General Minifter, as the 
Apofties, or to a Presbytery, or to a fingle Minifter of that fame 
Church (if there be any left ;) yet all are agreed that it belongs not 
to the People. Conclude of this therefore that the People (alone 
at leaft ) cannot juftly determine who ihali be their Paftor. 

3 . Yet the Determiners or Ordainers mull: have the peoples Con- 
fent, ordinarily. Becaufe the Minifteriall power compels not to obe 
dience by outward violence : And therefore Confent is of naturall 
Neceflity to the peoples aduall obedience. Ifamanfeta Steward 
over his Family, the reft of the fervants are bound to obey him,whe- 
ther they chofe him or no : but yet becaufe they cannot be made to 
obey him againft their Wils, a wife Matter will chufe fuch a one ( if 
fit ) whom the fervants will fooneft confent to : So if a man be to 
fend his fons to the Univeriity, he will not tell them that it is in their 
own power to choofe themfelves a Tutor ; but himfelf will do that ; 
and command them to obey him. But yet becaufe they can never 
learn againft their wils, therefore he will not (ordinarily) force them 
to a Tutor whom they will not confent to, if others may be had: 
(Though perhaps he may urge them to confent by fome (harp words 
or dealings.) So that the Ordainers (hould pleafe the people as far as 
may ftand with their welfare, and no further. 

Thefe things being thus laid down,let me for Application,tell you, 
III. Thirdly ,That when a Church is at variance about the choice of a Pa 
ftor ,or determining who fhall be the man/Afj Are bound to feekjhe ad 
vice and determination of Church-Guides : For feeing it belongs to 
them to Detennine,whether there be difference or no, ( by Ordain 
ing ) they muft efpecially be fought to when there is a difference. 

4. If the Ordainers or Minifters determine of a fit man, you muft 
ftand to the Determination, though perhaps another might be more 
fit. If the man by them determined of, be utterly incompetent, you 
muft ifirft prove it to them, and ( if that ferve not ) appeal to fome 
more General A(Tembly,or feek further to men more unqueftionably 
Judicious and faithfull then they are. 

5. If 

5. If the people will not thus be fatisfied; the refufedMinifter muft 
remember his duty, and not offer, without order and authority, to 
make himfelf the head of a dividing company. 

6. If he will not obey, he is to be admonifhed by the Paftors of 
that Affociation, and to be Avoided and Rejeded, if he be ob- 

7. If any paffionate part of the Church will fticfc to that man, the 
reft that fear God muft adraontfh them, and if they be obftinatc; 
avoid them, according to Rom^i6.ij. Nm Ibtfcecbj**, Brethren, 
Wftrk^ them Which caufe Mvifionf And offences, contrary to the dottrin* 
Vehieh ye have learned, And avoid them : For thej, that are fuck, fervc 
not our Lord fefus Chrift y but their own Mies : andhj -good Words and 
fair fteeches deceive the hearts of the fimfle. I have feen this verified in 
the iffue, of fome that I durft not fo have thought of in the beginning. 
Poor inconfi derate, unexperienced Chriftians little know wha-E they 
do, when they take part with dividers, and encourage them in divi- 
lion. They do but.&rengthen their own fnares. Such men fi(h moli 
for themfelves, even when they think themfeivies they are more zea 
lous for Chrift then others. 

8. Were there no other remedy,, rather then the Church (hould 
divide, they ftiould (after folemn feeking God) let God himfelf de 
termine, it by a Lot, as <Matthia$ was cholen, 

If you once fall a dividing > you will give the worder part fuch an 
example, d)at they will prefently choofe thcmfeives Teachers that 
will pieafe them, and leave but tew to hear or maintain a pious Mi- 

8. If the Church-Guides be fo corrupted, that they all confpirc 
to force on the people unfdund, inefficient or ungodly men,then the 
people may rejed them (as Cjfriaa advifeth them) or their own ac 
cord ; as being left deftitute of Chrifts orderly Remedy. 

9. What hath been here faid.of the firii cafe, may iiiffice to deter 
mine the. other cafes. If a people have two Miniikrs^ndfome would 
adhere to one and rejeft-tbe; other, 1 and the reft adhere to him and 
refufe obedience to the fdrmer - in this caie they fhould all take the 
advice of the neighbour Affociated Paiors : For, though it bedif- 
puted, whether fuch Aflbciated Uinifters have any Regent Autho 
rity over a neighbour Church, yet all agree that they fhould be con- 
fulted and heard in order to Unity ; and that s enough to the buii- 
nefsinhand. If they can prove their Minifters fit to: be ejeded, let 
them there prove ic. All Chriftians $re bound to be accomacable to 

T theii? 


their Brethren, in fitch offenfive adions, as have a face of divifion 
or difobedience. If both the Paftors in queftien be approved of, then 
theAffociatedMinifters fhould advice the people to lay afide their 
carnal finfull contentions (which the Church of Corinth was fo plain 
ly chid tor) a.nd to clofe with both, i. Becaufe two Miniftersare 
far fitter to Guide a Church (fpecially if great) then any one aione : 
Yea fhould one. of diem be but weak, and the other more able a 
weak hand will afford feme help. 2. It is the Scripture way to have 
more Elders then one, and if they rejed their Paftors, and fupply 
the room with private men, they will, likely, have weaker then they 
reject. 3 . It is not in the peoples power to reject one that is already 
their Teacher : except when he is utterly intolerable, and all order 
ly means for his eje&ion do fail. Prove from Scripture that any peo 
ple may elfe rejed or depofe their Minifter. 4. Much lefs may a lef- 
fer part of a Church do it, when the greater diflenteth : no nor a 
greater, becaufe it tendeth to divifion. 

If the people are unruly and will not agree ; the neighbour Mi- 
nifters muft admoniih both the faid Paftors, and charge them in 
ChriftsName that they avoid Divifions, and that themfelves do hear 
tily and lovingly clofe and entertain no motion to divifion from the 
people : and that will break the peoples dividing purpofes, if the Pa 
ftors be but refolvedly agatnft it, and do not fecretly foment it (as 
commonly they do.) If either of the Paftors be refolved for Divifion, 
and rejed this admonition; the godly people are bound to fufped 
that man, andtoadmoniftihim, and not fide with him ; feeing it is 
ufually the true mother that would not have the childe divided i and 
an ill fign when men draw Parties and Diiciples after them. And 
the neighbour Minifters are to admoniih fuch a man, and proceed 
with him as he receiveth or rejedeth the admonition. Many diffe 
rences in Judgement and Pradice muft be tolierated among Brethren 
to prevent dividing : but dividing it felf is not to be tolierated : (ex 
cept where the caufe is juft ; which muft be a great neceflity.) What 
fliould be done with thofe particular -pepfons, that will own but one 
ef the Paftors, and yet will joy n with, the whale body of the Church r 
which acknowledged! both, I will not n<t>w attempt co advife; be 
caufe it will be fittcft to do it according to the quality 0f the perfons^ 
their reafons, their carriage in the bufine&,^. all whkh may much 
vary the cafe. f 

If k appear,! that i the people r-ejed oi? rfrfowo a Minsff et for pri r 
GS jfor^agffingcheniriri thdr opinkms or - old cuftoHis^ 

in things imnecefiary, or worfe, thefe peeple muft be the more 
iharply dealt with. Much more, if it be for croffing them in their fin, 
or telling them the truth. But in cafe a Minifter have by weaknefs 
or paflionate fpeeches, or negled of his duty, given juft offence to 
his people, yet the fault be not fiich as to caft him out : then the 
neighbour Miniftcrs muft advife him, humbly to acknowledge to 
the people his weaknels or mifcarriage, and to promife his faithful! 
endeavours to reform : and if any perfons remain paffionately un- 
reconcilable to him, they muft be the more born with (fothey 
drive not to a liviflon ) becaufe he gave them fo much occafton of 
offence. No humble man can violently profecute another,, for being 
too violent againft his faults : but will rather fubmit to it, as Gods 
afflicting, humbling, reforming rod. And it s two to one, but after 
fome experience of his more holy, harmlefs, diligent behaviour, 
thofe very people will own him, that did difclaim him. 

Laftly,If all remedies fail, let one of the Paftors depart, and fay, Lee 
him take the living dulde undivided : And the better man will likely 
be the readied to do it ; according to that I befcre cited out of Clew. 
Roman.Ad Corinth. 

Let none wonder that I fpeak fo much on this fubjed : For if the 
Scripture were confcionably bferved, men would take Church- 
divifion for a greater finne then Adultery or Theft. Mutinies and 
Divifions do more infallibly deftroy an Army , then almoft any 
other fault, or weaknefs : and therefore all Generals punifh Muti-* 
neers with death, as well as flat Traytors. I confefs ten or twelve 
years ago, I wondered .oft to finde both Scripture, and aknoft all 
che voluminous Writings of the Fathers in every age, to be fo filled 
with exclamations and argumentations againft Church-dividers and 
Hereticks : But now I know a little better the reafon of it ; and 
how prone, even Godly, Zealous men (efpecially young unexperi 
enced Chriftians ) are to it, and of what defperate confequence ic 
is. Our Union is our ftrength and beauty : Commonly they that 
Divide for the bringing in of any inferiour Truth or Pra&ice, do 
but deftroy that Truth and Piety that was there before. I like noc 
h im that will cure the Headach by cutting the Throat. No Mafter, 
no Law, no Profeflion was ever more merciful], gentle, meek,, 
more for Unity, Love and Concord, then the Matter^ Law and 
Profe/lion of Chriftians. O that the Lord woald fpeedily anfe, and 
&rre up in all his people in the world, fo mighty a Zeal for Unity 

T * and 


tndSanftfey, thatthofe bleffcd Twins might conjunAly flourifh, 
ffhieh thrive fo ill when they are divided : and chat the true Saints 
rf Chrtft may once tafte that fweetneffe which iiich a blefled 
State of the Church would afford ! However, the friends of Peace 
ind Holineffe (hall tafte of it, Rcade fames i a 3 . to the end. i Cor. 

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