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is a man made a minister by every infidel auditory that heareth him?2. Nor is it Christian people that must do this much to the making of a general minister; for, 1. They have no such power given for it, in nature or the Word of God. 2. They are generally unqualified and unable for such a work. 3. They are no where obliged to it, nor can fitly leave their callings for it; much less to get the abilities necessary to judge. 4. Which of the people have this power? Isit any of them, or any church of private men? Or some one more than the rest? Neither one nor all can lay any claim to it. There is some reason why this congregation rather than another should choose their own pastors: but there is no reason (nor Scripture) that this congregation choose a minister to convert the world. III. I conclude therefore that the call of a minister in general doth consist, 1. Dispositively in the due qualifications and enablement of the person. 2. And the necessity of the people, with opportunity, is a providential part of the call. 3. And the ordainers are the orderly electors and determiners of the person that shall receive the power from Christ. 1. For this is part of the power of the keys or churchgovernment. 2. And Paul giveth this direction for exercising of this power to Timothy, which sheweth the ordinary way of calling, 2 Tim. ii. 2. "And the things which thou hast heard of me among many witnesses, the same commit thou to faithful men, who shall be able to teach others also.""There were in the church at Antioch certain prophets As they ministered to the Lord, the Holy Ghost said, Separate me Barnabas and Saul for the work whereunto I have called them; and when they had fasted and prayed, and laid their hands on them, they sent them away. And they being sent forth by the Holy Ghost, departed." In this (whether it be to be called an ordination, or rather a mission) there is somewhat ordinary, (that it be by men in office,) and somewhat extraordinary, (that it be by a special inspiration of the Holy Ghost). And Timothy received his gifts and office by the imposition of the hands of Paul and of the presbytery. I Tim, iv. 14. 2 Tim. i. 6. 1 Tim. v. 22. "Lay hands suddenly on no man." These instances make the case the clearer, 1. Because it is certain, that all that governing power which is given by
. Christ to the church, under the name of the keys, is given to the pastors. 2. Because there are no other competitors to lay a reasonable claim to it.
Quest, xix. Wherein consisteth the power and nature of ordination? And to whom doth it belong? And is it an act of jurisdiction? And is imposition of hands necessary in it?1. This is resolved on the by before. 1. Ordination performeth two things: (1.) The designation, election, or determination of the person who shall receive the office. (2.) The ministerial investiture of him in that office: which is a ceremonial delivery of possession; as a servant doth deliver possession of a house, by delivering him the key who hath before received the power or right from the owner. 2. The office delivered by this election and investiture, is the sacred ministerial office in general, to be after exercised according to particular calls and opportunities: as Christ called the apostles, and the Spirit called the ordinary general teachers of those times, such as Barnabas, Silas, Silvanus, Timothy, Epaphroditus, Apollos, &c. And as is before cited, 2Tim. ii. 2. As a man is made in general a licensed physician, lawyer, &c. 3. This ordination is 'ordinis gratia,' necessary to order; and therefore so far necessary as order is necessary: which is ordinarily, when the greater interest of the substantial duty, or of the thing ordered, is not against it. As Christ determined the case of sabbath keeping, and not eating the shew-bread. As "the sabbath was made for man, and not man for the sabbath;" and the end is to be preferred before the separable means: so ordination was instituted for order, and order for the thing ordered and for the work of the Gospel, and the good of souls, and not the Gospel and men's souls for that order. Therefore when 1. The death; 2. Distance; 3. Or the malignity of the ordainers depriveth a man of ordination, these three substitutes may notify to him the will of God that he is by him a person called to that office: 1. Fitness for the works, in understanding, willingness, and ability; 2. The necessity of souls; 3. Opportunity. II. The power of ordaining belongeth not, 1. To magistrates; 2. Or to private men, either single, or as the body of a church; but, 3. To the senior pastors of the church (whether bishops or presbyters of a distinct order, the reader must not expect that I here determine). For, 1. The power is by Christ given to them, as is before proved; and in Tit. i. 5. 2. None else are ordinarily able to discern aright the abilities of a man for the sacred ministry. The people may discern a profitable, moving preacher, but whether he understand the Scripture, or the substance of religion, or be sound in the faith and not heretical, and delude them not with a form of well-uttered words, they are not ordinarily able to judge. 3. None else are fit to attend this work, but pastors who are separated to the sacred office8. It requireth more time to get fitness for it, and then to perform it faithfully, than either magistrates or people can ordinarily bestow. 4. The power is no where given by Christ to magistrates or people. 5. It hath been exercised by pastors or church-officers only, both in and ever since the apostles' days, in all the churches of the world. And we have no reason to think that the church hath been gathered from the beginning till now, by so great an error, as a wrong conveyance of the ministerial power. III. The word jurisdiction as applied to the church officers, is no Scripture word, and in the common sense soundeth too big, as signifying more power than the servants of all must claim; for there is "one lawgiver who is able to save and to destroy." But in a moderate sense it may be tolerated; as jurisdiction signifieth in particular, 1. Legislation; 2. Or judicial process or sentence; 3. Or the execution of such a sentence, strictly taken, so ordination is no part of jurisdiction. But as jurisdiction signifieth the same with the power of government, 'jus regendi' in general, so ordination is an act of jurisdiction: as the placing or choosing of inferior officers may belong to the steward of a family, or as the calling or authorizing of physicians belongeth to the college of physicians, and the authorizing of lawyers to f Acts xiii. 2. Rom. i. 1. 1 Tim. iv. 15. the judges' society, or the authorizing of doctors in philosophy, to the society of philosophers or to particular rulers. Where note that in the three last instances, the learning or fitness of the said persons or societies, is but their ' dispositio vel aptitudo ad potestatem exercendam;' but the actual power of conveying authority to others, or designing the recipient person, is received from the supreme power of the land, and so is properly an act of authority, here called jurisdiction. So that the common distinguishing of ordination from jurisdiction or government, as if they were ' tota specie' different, is unsound. IV. Imposition of hands was a sign (like the kiss of peace, and the anointing of persons, and like our kneeling in prayer, &c.) which having first somewhat in their nature, to invite men to the use, was become a common, significant sign of a superior's benediction of an inferior, in those times and countries. And so was here applied ordinarily for its antecedent significancy and aptitude to this use; and was not purposely instituted, nor had its significancy newly given it by institution; and so was not like a sacrament necessarily and perpetually affixed to ordination. Therefore we must conclude, 1. That imposition of hands in ordination is a decent, apt, significant sign, not to be scrupled by any, nor to be omitted without necessity, as being of Scripture, ancient, and common use. 2. But yet that it is not essential to ordination; which may be valid by any fit designation and separation of the person. And therefore if it be omitted, it nullifieth not the action. And if the ordainers did it by letters to a man a thousand miles off, it would be valid: and some persons of old were ordained when they were absent. V. I add as to the need of ordination, 1. That without this key, the office and church doors would be cast open, and every heretic or self-conceited person intrude. 2. It is a sign of a proud, unworthy person, that will judge himself fit for so great a work, and intrude upon such a conceit, when he may have the judgment of the pastors, and avoideth it1'.
ters by the people, than any should go for Christians that are not baptized, or for married persons whose marriage is not solemnized.
Quest, xx. Is ordination necessary to make a man a pastor of a particular church as such? And is he to be made a general minister and a particular church-elder or pastor at once, and by one ordination?
I have proved that a man may be made a minister in general, yea, and sent to exercise it in converting infidels, and baptizing them, before ever he is the pastor of any particular church. To which I add, that in this general ministry, he is a pastor in the universal church, as a licensed physician that hath no hospital or charge, is a physician in the kingdom. And, 1. As baptism is as such our entrance into the universal church, and not into a particular; so is ordination to a minister an entrance only on the ministry as such. 2. Yet a man may at once be made a minister in general, and the pastor of this or that church in particular: and in kingdoms wholly inchurched and Christian, it is usually fittest so to do: lest many being ordained 'sine titulo,' idleness and poverty of supernumeraries, should corrupt and dishonour the ministry: which was the cause of the old canons in this case. 3. But when a man is thus called to both at once, it is not all done by ordination as such; but his complicate relation, proceedeth from a complication of causes. As he is a minister, it is by ordination. And as he is the pastor of this people, it is by the conjunct causes of appropriation: which are, 1. Necessarily the people's consent. 2. Regularly, the pastor's approbation and recommendation, and reception of the person into their communion. 3. And sometimes the magistrate may do much to oblige the people to consent. 4. But when a man is made a minister in general before, he needeth no proper ordination to fix him in a particular charge; but only an approbation, recommendation, particular investiture, and reception. For else a man must be oft ordained, even as oft as he removeth. But yet imposition