Imágenes de páginas


themselves have bred, nourished and maintained, their mouth in commendation of her did somewhat overflow..

From hence you may proceed (but the means of connexion I leave to yourself) to another discourse, which I think very meet to be handled either here or elsewhere at large; the parts whereof may be these :

1. That in this cause between them and us, men are to sever the proper and essential points and controversy, from those which are accidental. The most essential and proper are these two ; overthrow of Episcopal; ereation of Presbyterial authority. But in these two points whosoever joineth with them is accounted of their number; whosoever in all other points agreeth with them, yet thinketh the authority of bishops not unlawful, and of elders not necessary, may justly be severed from their retinue. Those things, therefore, which either in the persons, or in the laws and orders themselves, are faulty, may be complained on, acknowledged, and amended ; yet they no whit the nearer their main purpose. For what if all errors by them supposed in our liturgy were amended, even according to their own hearts defire; if non-residence, pluralities, and the like, were utterly taken away; are their lay-elders, therefore, presently authorised ? their sovereign ecclefiastical jurisdiction established ?

But even in their complaining against the outward and accidental matters in church-government, they are many ways faulty. 1. In their end which they propose to themselves. For in declaiming against abuses, their meaning is not to have them redressed, but, by disgracing the present state, to make way for their own discipline. As, therefore, in Venice, if any senator should discourse against the power of their senate, as being either too sovereign, or too weak in government, 'with purpose to draw their authority to a moderation, it might well be suffered; but not so, if it should appear he spake with purpose to induce another state by depraving the present: so, in all causes belonging either to church or commonwealth, we are to have regard what mind the complaining part doth bear, whether of amendment or of innovation; and accordingly either to suffer or suppress it. Their objection therefore is frivolous, Why, may not men speak against abuses? Yes, but with desire to cure the part affected, not to destroy the whole. 2. A second in their manner of complaining, not only because it is for the most


part in bitter and reproachful terms, but also because it is unto the common people, judges incompetent and insufficient, both to determine any thing amiss, and for want of skill and authority to amend it. Which also discovereth their intent and purpose to be rather destructive than corrective.3dly, Those very exceptions which they take are frivolous and impertinent: Some things, indeed, they accuse as impious; which if they may appear to be such, God forbid they should be maintained.

Against the rest it is only alleged, that they are idle ceremonies without use, and that better and more profitable might be devised. Wherein they are doubly deceived : for neither is it a sufficient plea to say, This must give place, because a better may be devised: and in our judgments of better and worse, we oftentimes conceive amiss, when we compare those things which are in devise with those which are in practice; for the imperfections of the one are hid, till by time and trial they be discovered : the others are already manifest and open to all. But last of all (which is a point in my opinion of great regard, and which I am desirous to have enlarged), they do not see, that for the most part when they strike at the state ecclesiastical, they fecretly wound the civil state. For personal faults, what can be said against the church, which may not also agree to the commonwealth ?: In both statesmen have always been, and will be always men, sometimes blinded with error, most commonly perverted by passions : many unworthy have been and are advanced in both, many worthy not regarded. As for abuses which they pretend to be in the laws themselves; when they inveigh against non-residence, do they take it a matter lawful or expedient in the civil state, for a man to have a great and gainful office in the north, himself continually remaining in the south ? He that hath an office, let him attend his office. When they condemn plurality of livings spiritual to the pit of hell, what think they of infinite, of temporal promotions ?: By the great philosopher, it is forbidden as a thing most dangerous to commonwealths, that by the same man many great offices should be exercised*.. When.'


* Φαύλον δ' αν δoξειεν ειναι και το πλειες αρχας αυτον άρχειν" όπερ ευδοκιμει παρα τους Καρχηδονιοις,έν γαρ εφ' ένος άριστο αποτελειται· δει δ' όπως γινηται ταθ’ όραν τον νομοθετης και μη προσταττειν τον αυτον άυλειν και σαντοτομείν, ώσθ' όπ8 μη μικρα πoλις πολιτικώτερον πλειονας κατεχειν των αρχών, και δημοτικώτερον. κ. τ. λ.

( Arift. de Republicâ, Lib. ii. c. 9. Edit. Heins.)

they deride our ceremonies as vain and frivolous, were it hard to apply their exceptions even to those civil ceremonies, which at the coronation, in Parliament, and all courts of justice are used ? Were it hard to argue even against circumcision, the ordinance of God, as being a cruel ceremony? against the passover, as being ridiculous-shod, girt, a staff in their hand, to eat a lamb' ?

To conclude, you may exhort the clergy (or what if you direct your conclufion, not to the clergy in general, but only to the learned in, or of both universities), you may exhort them to a due consideration of all things, and to a right esteem and valuing of each thing in that degree wherein it ought to stand: for it oftentimes falleth out, what men have either devised themselves, or greatly delighted in, the price and excellency thereof they do admire .above desert. The chiefest labour of a Christian should be to know, of a minister to preach Christ crucified : in regard whereof not only wordly things, but even things otherwise precious, even the discipline itself is vile and base. Whereas now, by the heat of contention, and violence of affection, the zeal of men towards the one hath greatly decayed their love to the other. Hereunto, therefore, they are to be exhorted, to preach Christ crucified, the mortification of the flesh, the renewing of the spirit; not those things which in time of strife fêem precious, but, passions being allayed, are vain and childish.

This A strange reading is found in all the subsequent editions : “ Against the passover as being ** ridiculous ; should be girt, a staff in their hand, to eat a lamb.".

This EPITAPH was long since presented to the world in memory of

Mr. HOOKER, by Sir WILLIAM COWPER; who also built him a fair Monument in Borne Church, and acknowledges him to have been his spiritual father.

Though nothing can be spoke worthy his fame,
Or the remembrance of that precious name,
Judicious HOOKER; though this cost be spent
On him that hath a lasting monument
In his own books ; yet ought we to express,
If not his worth, yet our respectfulness.
Church-ceremonies he maintained : then why,
Without all ceremony, should he die ?
Was it because his life and death should be
Both equal patterns of humility ?
Or that perhaps this only glorious one
Was above all, to ask, why had he none?
Yet he that lay so long obscurely low
Doth now preferred to greater honours go.
Ambitious men, learn hence to be more wise:
Humility is the true way to rise :
And God in me this lesson did inspire,
To bid this humble man-“ Friend, fit up higher.”

[blocks in formation]


[ocr errors]

Page 206, line 24,--p. 530, says :-" Who, read p. 530.-" Who. .

215, - 29,pontafle, read pantofle.
226, — 27,-deacons, read persons.

- 10,--feri, read serie..
255, 26,These words,: “ (or rather Zacharias,)” should have

been inserted in a note. 271, - 25,-graditus, read gradibus. 280, ult.-books, read his books. 303, pen-of infinite, of temporal, read of the infinite of temporal.

« AnteriorContinuar »