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upon none of them: only they were Baptized in the Name of the Lord Jesus) Then laid they their hands on them, and they received the Holy Ghost. And Ch. 19: 5, 6. we are told that St. Paul (who receiv'd both his Apoftolick Commission, and his Inftrudion in the Gospel, not from the other Apostles, but immediately from Christ himself.

Gal. 1. 11, 12, 16, 17) laid his hands on some Ephesians, whom he had before Baptized *; and that when he had laid his hands upon them, the Holy Ghost came on them. Of this, and of the like, he minds them, and the rest of the Ephesians, Eph. 1.,13; saying, In whom also after that ye believed, ye were sealed with that Holy Spirit of Promise.

So this was the Ordinary settled way with all the Apostles. The Twelve were Confirm'd by the Coming down of the Holy Ghost upon them on the Day of Pentecoft. The first converts were Confirm'd by the Prayer of the Apostles, without Laying on of hands, themselves also praying with the Apostles. Ads 4. 3: t: And no doubt the persons Confirm'd always pray'd with those that Confirm'd them. ·

The case of St. Paul, who seems to have receiv'd the Grace of Confirmation before he was Baptiz'd, only by Ananias his putting his hands on him, and telling him his message from Chrift; (Acts 9..17) and the case of Cornelius and his company, who plainly receiv'd the same Grace before Baptism, (Ch. 10. 44) only by their Faith in the word spoken by St. Peter; (Ch. 15. 9) those were Extraordinary cases, and cannot concern us.

of both extraordinary cases, and of the ordinary Confirmation of the Corinthians, the Apostle {peaks 1 Cor. 12, 13, (as shall more plainly appear Part 3, Ch: 1.) in these words, By one Spirit we are all baptized into one body, whether we be Jews or Gentiles, whether we be bond of free ; and have been all made to drink into one spirit. And of the same he speaks 2 Cor. 1. 21, 22. O de Beberov, Now be which confirmetb us with you in Christ, and hath anointed us, is God: whe bath also fealed us, and given the earnest of. the Spirit in our hearts.

We are, to follow the Ordinary settled way, by the Prayer, and Laying on of the hands of the Apostles, and those to whom the Apostles gave their Power to Confirm. If it be objected against this being the ordinary settled way, that it is not oftner spoken of in the Scriptures; that is no reason of doubt. For in three of the Gospels there is no mention of Christ's Baptizing any: and it is but once spoken of by St. John. Yet there is no

* With the same Baptifm in the Name of the Lord Jesus, with Ch. 2. 38. Ch. 8. 16. Ch. 10. 48. See Part 2. cb. 3. + Then was fulfills to them the Promise Ch. 2. 38, 39.

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doubt that he caused his Disciples to Baptize all that came to him. So there is no doubt that the Laying on of hands now Spoken of, was the Ordinary settled way of Confirmation.

And this was the Laying on of bands, Heb. 6. 2, which is one of the first * principles of the doctrine of Christ, and a part of the foundation, next to the doctrine of Baptisms, and cannot but be meant of Confirmation. For this was the great General part of the Foundation, next to Baptism. And if you

read the fix first verses, you may find the express Meaning of this Laying on of bands; that the Author of the Epistle refuses to lay again the foundation of repentance from dead works, and of faith towards God, of the doctrine of baptisms, and of laying on of hands, and of resurrection of the dead, and of eterral judgment : because it. is impossible for those who were once enlightned, (by receiving the Faith) and have tasted of the heavenly gift, (by Baptism, John 4. 1, 10) and were made partakers of the Holy Ghoj, by laying on of hands) and have tasted the good Promises of the word of God, and the powers of the world to come, (by the hope of the Refurrection of the dead, and of eternal. Judgment. Matth: 22. 29. Eph. 1. 18, 19, 20. Axts 24, 15) if they fall fail away, to renew them again unto repentance.

No other Laying on of hands can reasonably be thought to be there meant. That of Qrdination was no part of the first principles to be taught to babes, Ch. 5. 12, 13; and was built upon the Foundation of Confirmation.

Aets 6. 3. As for Laying on of hands in Absolution; altho'it was us’d in the Primitive Church; yet it is not certainly found it is only by fome thought to be) in the New Testament. Lay hands suddenly on no man, neither be partaker of other mens fins, 1 Tim. 5. 22. after directions in the verses before, concerning elders that rule well, and an accusation against an elder, and them (particularly Elders) that fin notorioufly, ought in all reason to be understood of Ordination, well known by Laying on of hands, in both those Epistles ; (1 Ep. Ch. 4. 2 Ep. Ch. 1) and not of Abfolution, which is no where known in the Scripture to be given with this Ceremony. Only it is very agreeable with the context for Absolution to be meant together with Ordination. So Heb. 6. 2, Laying on of hands, being one of the first Princi. ples of the foundation, next to baptism, and the being made parţakers of the Holy Ghost, being in the following verses reckon'd a trong the fame Principles, next to the heaveuly gift by Baptism; this Laying on of hands ought in all reason to be under

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stood of Confirmation, well known Aets 8, and 19, to be administred by Laying on of hands; and not of Absolution, no where known in the Scripture to be given thereby. Besides in Baptism is the Absolution of the Foundation. The Abfolution afterward is for healing Accidental breaches, or for the encouragement and fuller comfort of Extraordinary faith; (Matth. 9. 2, 6, 8 *) as the Lord's Supper is for preserving and strengthning the building, and is not reckon'd among the Principles of the Foundation. Other Laying on of hands need not here be mention'd.

Therefore the Laying on of hands, which is a part of the founa dation, is without doubt Confirmation. And being a part of the foundation, it is certainly Ordain'd of God. And he alone gives the Graces of his Holy Spirit: He alone therefore ordain'd the Means whereby they are given; whereby also they were Visibly and Miraculously given. His giving by that Means Visible and Miraculous Graces, was an abundant Declaration of his Will to have that Means us'd.

CHAP. II. The Apostolick Confirmation more Distinetly confi

der'd. The Form or Manner of it.

FO

TOR the more distinct understanding what this Ordinance

of God was in the time of the Apostles, there is to be

consider'd, 1, The Form or Manner of it: 2, The Grace given thereby : 3, The End for which the Grace was given ; and 4, Who were to be Confirm'd.

The Form or Manner of it is in the forecited relation out of Afts 8. thus, The Apostles Peter and John prayed for them that they might receive the Holy Ghost. Then laid they their hands on them.

The Apostles, or those to whom the Apostles gave their power, (Tit. 1. 5) prayed for them that were to be Confirm’d, that they might receive the Holy Ghost. Then they laid their hands on them. This was done to the Samaritans by two Apostles. And the same was done to the disciples at Ephesus by one Apostle. It is probable that Peter and fon did not only Pray together

# See the Lord's Supper, 22 Q. *

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for the Congregation, but also jointly Laid their hands on every one, as molt agreeable to Christ's Promise, where two or three are gathered together in his Name, and to their own Zeal.

After they had prayed for the congregation, that they might receive the Holy Ghost, then laid they their hands on them. What is meant by their Laying their hands on them, is shew'd Matth. 19. 13, 15. There were brought unto him little children, that he should put his hands on them and pray. And be laid bis hands on them. Mark 10, 13, 16, it is, They brought young children to him, that he should touch them. He put his hands npon them, and blessed them. So by Chrift's touching the chil. dren, and by his Laying his hands on them, is meant his Blefsing them, or Praying for them. The same therefore is meant by the Apostles Laying on their hands. After they had Prayed for the whole congregation together, then they Blessed or Pray'd for every one severally. The reason why Laying on of hands fignifies blessing or praying for, is becaure it was the accustomed natural ceremony, or rather natural motion of the body, in blessing or praying for particular persons: as Lifting up the hands was in blessing many together, (Luke 24. 50) and in óther prayer.

I Tim. 2. 8.

CHAP. III.
The Grace given by the Apostolick Confirmation.
S to the Grace given by the Prayer and Blessing of the

gave power
to Confirm : It is said of the Samaritans, And they re-
ceived the Holy Ghoft; and of the Ephefian disciples, The Holy
Ghost came on them, and they spake with tongues, and propbehed.
They did not all speak with tongues, on whom the Apostles
laid their hands.
i Cor. 12. 10, 30.

But that and divers other Gifts were scatter'd among them. Ver. 8. &c, To one is given by the Spirit, the word of wisdom; to another the word of knowledge by the fame Spirit; to another the gifts of healing, &c. But to every one that was a true believer, was given a Bounteous measure of the Grace promis'd by Christ to all. John 7. 37, 38, 39, Jesus food and cried, saying, If any man thirst, let bim come unto me, and drink. He that believeth on me, as the Scripture hath said, out of his belly fall flow rivers of living waher. But this fpake be of the Spirit, which they that believe on bim, jould receive : for the Holy Ghost was not get given, becaufe that Jesus was not yet glorified. This was the Gift which all receiv'd in Confirmation; and was a plentiful Increase of the

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Grace

Grace before receiv'd in Baptism. For Chap.- 4 of the fame Gospel, when Jesus made and baptized more disciples tban John, tv. i) he says. v. 10, tp a woman of Samaria, If thou knewest the gift of God, and who it is that saith to thee, Give me to drink ; thou would's have asked of him, and he would have given thee liv, ing water. So in Baptism he gave living water : In Confirma, tion, after he was Glorified, he gave more of the same living water flowing into divers streams. And they were streams of water springing up into everlasting life, v. 14.

This increase of the Grace of Baptism, of the water springing, up into everlasting life, is intimated by the words of St. Paul Tit. 3. 5, 6, He faded us by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghoft; which be seed on us abundantly through Jefus Christ our Saviour. In these words is plainly meant the whole Grace of the Holy Ghost, both in Baptism, (John 3: 5) and in Confirmation. Acts 2. 33: The renewing therefore in Confirmation was an Increase of that renewing in Baptism, whereby they were saved. They were saved not only by the renewing in Baptifm, þut by the renewing also in Çonfirmation.

That there might be Knowledge fufficient for this Grace of Confirmation ; John 14. 26, Christ says io his Disciples, But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will fend in my name, be fall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you. Thus he promis'd that the Holy Ghost to be given after his Ascension, should teach them and all Christians to Understand, and help them to Remember all things of his Word.

That their Belief of the same might be fully confirm'd; Afts 5., 30, 31, 32, St. Peter tells the Jews, that the Holy Ghost, whom God hath given to them that obey bim, is a witness that God rais'd up Jesus, and hath exalted him with his right hand to be a Prince and a Saviour, for to give repentance to Israel; and forgiveness of fins. And St: John, 1 Ep. 2. 20, says, Ye have an unction from the Holy One, and ye know all things. And v. 27, The anointing which ye have received of bim abideth in you : and ya need not that any man teach you. But as the same anointing teachetb you of all things and is truth, and is no lie; and even as it haih taught you, ye shall abide in him. The unktion or Anointing was the Grace of the Holy Ghoft given in Confirmation. 2 Cor. 1. 21, 22. It cannot be meant that he taught them all things without the teaching of the Apostles, and other Ministers of Christ; but that he gave them infallible Assurance of the Truth of the whole Gospel preach'd by the Apostles ; so that they needed not any further proof of it from man. And

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