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As the Church of Jerusalem, Alexandria, and Antioch, have erred; so also the
O Almighty and everlasting God, who didst give to thine Apostle Bartholomew grace truly to believe and to preach thy word : Grant, we beseech thee, unto thy Church to love that word wbich he believed, and both to preach and receive the same, through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen. Coll. for Saint Bartholomen's Day.
O Almighty God, who hast built thy Church upon the foundation of the Apostles and Prophets, Jesus Christ himself being the head corner-stone; Grant us so to be joined together in unity of spirit by their doctrine, that we may be made an holy temple, acceptable unto thee, through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen. Coll. for Saint Simon and Saint Jude's Day.
The church, or house of God, is a place appointed by the holy Scriptures, where the lively word of God ought to be read, taught, and heard, the Lord's holy name called upon by public prayer, hearty thanks given to his Majesty for his infinite and unspeakable benefits bestowed upon us, his holy sacraments duly and reverently administered; and that therefore all that be godly indeed ought both with diligence, as appointed, to repair together to the said church, and there with all reverence to use and behave themselves before the Lord. The said church thus godly used by the servants of the Lord, in the Lord's true service, for the effectual presence of God's grace, wherewith he doth by his holy word and promises endue his people there present and assembled, to the attainment as well of commodities worldly, necessary for us, as also of all heavenly gifts, and life everlasting, is called by the word of God (as it is indeed) the temple of the Lord, and the house of God. Hom. xiv. 1.
• Neither is the Church of God such as it may not be dusked with some spot, or asketh not sometime reparation. Jewell.
The true Church is an universal congregation or fellowship of God's faithful and elect people, built upon the foundation of the Apostles and Prophets, Jesus Christ himself being the head
17. Blessed is the man that hear- Apostles' doctrine and fellowship, eth me, watching daily at my gates, and in breaking of bread, and in waiting at the posts of my doors. prayers. Acts ii. 42. Now I praise Prov. viii. 34. Go ye therefore, you, brethren, that ye remember and teach all nations, baptizing me in all things, and keep the orthem-teaching them to observe dinances as I delivered them to you. all things whatsoever I have com- For I have received of the Lord manded you. Matt. xxviii. 19, 20. that which also I delivered unto When they believed, Philip preach- you. 1 Cor. xi. 2, 23. ing the things concerning the king- c Now the Spirit speaketh exdom of God, and the name of Jesus pressly, that in the latter times Christ, they were baptized, both some shall depart from the faith, men and women, Acts viii. 12. giving heed to seducing spirits, They continued stedfastly in the and doctrines of devils; speaking
Church of Rome hath erred ; not only in their
corner-stone. (Eph. ii. 19, 20.) And it hath always three notes or marks, whereby it is known : pure and sound doctrine; the sacraments ministered according to Christ's holy institution; and the right use of ecclesiastical discipline. This description of the Church is agreeable both to the Scriptures of God, and also to the doctrine of the ancient Fathers ; so that none may justly find fault therewith. ---Now if you will compare this with the Church of Rome—not as it was in the beginning, but as it is at present, and hath been for the space of nine hundred years and odd—you shall well perceive the state thereof to be so far wide from the nature of the true Church, that nothing can be more. For neither are they built upon the foundation of the Apostles and Prophets, retaining the sound and pure doctrine of Christ Jesus ; neither yet do they order the sacraments, or else the ecclesiastical keys, in such sort as he did first institute and ordain them : but have so intermingled their own traditions and inventions, by chopping and changing, by adding and plucking away, that now they may seem to be converted into a new guise. Whereof it followeth that the Popes, in not hearing Christ's voice, as they ought to do, but preferring their own decrees before the express word of God, do plainly argue to the world that they are not of Christ, nor yet possessed with his Spirit. Hom. xxviii. 2.
Let them compare our Churches and theirs together, and they shall see, that themselves have most shamefully gone from the Apostles, and we most justly have gone from them. following the example of Christ, of the Apostles, and the holy Fathers, give the people the holy communion whole and perfect: but these men, contrary to all the Fathers, to all the Apostles, and contrary to Christ himself, do sever the sacraments, and pluck away one part from the people, and that with most notorious sacrilege, as Gelasius termeth it. -We have brought again the Lord's supper unto Christ's institution, and have made it a communion in very deed, common and indifferent to a great number according to the name; for of that it is called a com
lies in hypocrisy, &c. 1 Tim. iv. 1. 'ing himself that he is God. Whose &c. Many false prophets shall coming is after the working of rise, and shall deceive many. And Satan, with all power and signs and because iniquity shall abound, the lying wonders, and with all deceivlove of many shall wax cold. Matt. ableness of unrighteousness in them xxiv. 11, 12. That day shall not that perish; because they received come, except there come a falling not the love of the truth that they away first, and that man of sin be might be saved. 2 Thess. ii. 3, 4, revealed, the son of perdition : who 9, 10. I charge thee hefore God opposeth and exalteth bimself above and the Lord Jesus Christ; preach all that is called God, or that is the word; be instant in season, worshipped; so that he as God out of season; reprove, rebuke, exsitteth in the temple of God, shew- hort with all long-suffering and
living and manner of Ceremonies, but also in matters of Faith.
munion. But these men have changed all things contrary to Christ's institution, and have made a private mass of a holy communion : and so it cometh to pass, that we give the Lord's supper unto the people, and they give them a vain pageant to gaze upon. -We affirm, together with the ancient Fathers, that the body of Christ is not eaten but of the good and faithful, and of those that are endued with the Spirit of Christ. Their doctrine is, that Christ's very body effectually, and as they speak really and substantially, may not only be eaten of the wicked and unfaithful men, but also, which is monstrous and horrible to be spoken, of mice and dogs. We use to pray in our churches after that fashion, as according to Paul's lesson the people may know what we pray, and may answer Amen with a general consent. These men, like sounding metal, yell out in the churches unknown and strange words without understanding, without knowledge, and without devotion : yea, and do it of purpose, because the people should understand nothing at all.
But not to tarry about rehearsing all points, wherein we and they differ, for they have well nigh no end, we turn the Scriptures into all tongues : they scant suffer them to be had abroad in any tongue.- -We allure the people to read and to hear God's word; they drive the people from it.- -We desire to have our cause known to all the world; they flee to come to
-We lean unto knowledge; they unto ignorance : we trust unto light; they unto darkness. We reverence, as it becometh us, the writings of the Apostles and Prophets; and they burn them.- -Finally, we in God's cause desire to stand to God's only judgments ; they will stand only to their own. Wherefore if they will weigh all these things with a quiet mind, and fully bent to hear and to learn, they will not only allow this determination of ours, who have forsaken errors and followed Christ and his Apostles, but themselves also will forsake their own selves, and join of their own accord to our side, to go with
doctrine. For the time will come from the truth, and shall be turned when they will not endure sound unto fables. 2 Tim. iv, 1-4. Of doctrine ; but after their own lusts your own selves shall men arise shall they heap to themselves speaking perverse things, to draw teachers having itching ears; and away disciples after them. Acts xx. they shall turn away their ears 30.
XX. Of the Authority of the Church. a The Church hath power to decree Rites or Ceremonies, "and authority in Controversies of
a We do not read that Moses ordained, by order of law, any days of public fast throughout the whole year, more than that one day. The Jews notwithstanding had more times of common fasting; which the prophet Zachary (viii. 19,) reciteth to be the fast of the fourth, the fast of the fifth, the fast of the seventh, and the fast of the tenth month. But for that it appeareth not in the Levitical law when they were instituted; it is to be judged, that those other times of fasting, more than the fast of the seventh month, were ordained among the Jews by the appointment of their governors; rather of devotion, than by an express commandment given from God. Hom. xvi. 1.
h We know well enough, that the same word which was opened by Christ, and spread abroad by the Apostles, is sufficient both to our salvation, and also to upold and maintain all truth, and to confound all manner of heresy. By that word only do we condemn all sorts of old heretics. Aš for the Arians, the Eutychians, the Marcionites, the Ebionites, the Valentinians, the Carpocratians, the Tatians, the Novatians, and shortly all them
a Let all things be done decently Gentiles in Antioch, and Syria, and and in order—unto edifying. For Cilicia. Forasmuch as we have God is not the author of confusion, heard, that certain which went out but of peace, as in all churches of from us have troubled you with the saints. 1 Cor. xiv. 40, 26, 33. words, subverting your souls, sayFor this cause I left thee in Crete, ing, Ye must be circumcised, and that thou shouldest set in order the keep the law; to whom we gave no things that are wanting. Tit. i. 5. such commandment: it seemed good The rest will I set in order when unto us, being assembled with one I come. 1 Cor. xi. 34.
accord, to send chosen men unto b Obey them that have the rule you. -For it seemed to the Holy over you, and submit yourselves. Ghost and to us, to lay upon you Heb. xiii. 17. There rose up cer- no greater burden than these netain of the sect of the Pharisees cessary things: That ye abstain which believed, saying, That it was from meats offered to idols, and needful to circumcise them, and to from blood, and from things strancommand them to keep the law of gled, and from fornication : from Moses. And the apostles and which if ye keep yourselves, ye elders came together for to consider shall do well. Fare ye well. Acts of this matter. Then pleased it xv. 5, 6, 22–25, 28, 29. And as the apostles and elders, with the they went through the cities, they whole church, to send chosen men delivered them the decrees for to of their own eompany to Antioch keep that were ordained of the with Paul and Barnabas.- -And apostles and elders which were they wrote letters by them after at Jerusalem. And so were the this manner: The apostles, and churches established in the faith, elders, and brethren, send greeting and increased in number daily. unto the brethren which are of the Acts xvi. 4, 5.
Faith: and yet it is not lawful for the Church to ordain any thing that is contrary to God's words written, neither may it so expound one place of Scripture, that it be repugnant to another. Wherefore, «although the Church be a
which have a wicked opinion, either of God the Father, or of Christ, or of the Holy Ghost, or of any other point of Christian religion, for so much as they he confuted by the Gospel of Christ, we plainly pronounce them for detestable and damned persons, and defy them even unto the devil. Neither do we leave them so, but we also severely and straitly hold them in by lawful and politic punishments if they fortune to break out any where, and bewray themselves. Jewell.
They be the foundation of the Prophets and Apostles, whereupon is built the Church of God: they be the very sure and infallible rule, whereby may be tried whether the Church do swerve or err, and whereunto all ecclesiastical doctrine ought to be called to account: and that against these Scriptures neither law nor ordinance nor any custom ought to be heard :' no, though Paul himself, or an angel from heaven, should come and teach the contrary. Jewell. See Art. VI.
d Our Saviour taketh not and needeth not any testimony of man; and that which is once confirmed by the certainty of his eternal word, hath no more need of the confirmation of man's doctrine and writinys, than the bright sun at noon-tide hath need of the light of a little candle to put away darkness, and increase his light. Hom. xiv. 1.
e In vain do they worship me, none effect through your traditions, teaching for doctrines the com- which ye have delivered: and many mandments of men. For laying such like things ye do. Mark vii. aside the commandment of God, ye 7–13. Stand fast in the liberty hold the traditions of men as the wherewith Christ hath made us washing of pots and cups: and free, an be not entangled again many other such like things ye do. with the yoke of bondage. Gal. And he said unto them, Full well v. 1. ye reject the commandment of God, d If any man speak, let him speak that ye may keep your own tra- ås the oracles of God. 1 Pet. iv. 11. dition. For Moses said, Honour To the law and to the testimony: thy father and thy mother; and if they speak not according to this whoso curseth father or mother, let word, it is because there is no light him die the death. But ye say, if a in them. Is. viii. 20. Let us proman shall say to his father or phesy (expound) according to the mother, It is Corban, that is to say, proportion (analogy) of faith. Rom. a gift, by whatsoever thou mightest xii. 6. It is given unto you to be profited by me; he shall be know the mysteries of the kingdom free. And ye suffer him no more of heaven, but to them it not to do ought for his father or mo- given. Matt. xiji, 11. Ye have an ther; making the word of God of unction from the Holy One, and ye