Page images

The Times like those of Nazianzen.


Ch. ix. 4.

will be heavy even on both sides. Brought already we are PREFACE, even to that estate which Gregory Nazianzen mournfully describeth, saying 73, “My mind leadeth me” (sith there is no other remedy) “to fly and to convey myself into some “ corner out of sight, where I may scape from this cloudy

tempest of maliciousness, whereby all parts are entered “ into a deadly war amongst themselves, and that little

remnant of love which was, is now consumed to nothing. “ The only godliness we glory in, is to find out somewhat

whereby we may judge others to be ungodly. Each other's “ faults we observe as matter of exprobration and not of

grief. By these means we are grown hateful in the eyes “ of the heathens themselves, and (which woundeth us the

more deeply) able we are not to deny but that we have “ deserved their hatred. With the better sort of our own

our fame and credit is clean lost. The less we are to “ marvel if they judge vilely of us, who although we did “ well would hardly allow thereof. On our backs they also “ build that are lewd, and what we object one against

another, the same they use to the utter scorn and disgrace « of us all. This ve have gained

our mutual home“ dissensions. This we are worthily rewarded with, which

are more forward to strive than becometh men of virtuous « and mild disposition.”

[4.] But our trust in the Almighty is, that with us contentions are now at their highest float, and that the day will come (for what cause of despair is there?) when the passions of former enmity being allayed, we shall with ten times redoubled tokens of our unfeignedly reconciled love,

73 Greg. Νaz. in Αpol. [p. 33, και, ο τούτου χαλεπώτερον, ουδε ειπείν sq. ed. Ρar. Ι6ος. αγαπητόν, ορώντα έχομεν, ώς ου δικαίως διαβεβλήμεθα τους άλλους άνω και κάτω φερομένους δε και των ημετέρων τοϊς επιεικεστέτε και ταρασσομένους, φύγοντα φυγή ροις ουδέν γάρ θαυμαστόν, εί τους εκ του μέσου, υπό σκέπην αναχωρή- πλείοσιν, οι μόλις άν τι και των καλών σαντα, λαθείν του Πονήρου την ζάλην αποδέχoιντο: τεκταίνουσι δε επί των και την σκοτόμαιναν ήνικα πολεμεί μεν νώτων ημών οι αμαρτωλοί, και & κατ' αλλήλοις τα μέλη, οΐχεται δε της αλλήλων επινοούμεν, κατά πάντων αγάπης εί τι και την λείψανον...... έχουσι και γεγόναμεν θέατρον καινόν Πάντες δε εσμεν ευσεβείς, εξ ενός ...... Ταύτα ημίν και προς αλλήλους μόνου, του καταγινώσκειν άλλων ασέ- πόλεμος" ταύτα οι λίαν υπέρ του αγαβειαν...θηρούμεν δε τας άλλήλων αμαρ- Θού και πράου μαχόμενοι. Hooker τίας, ουκ ίνα θρηνήσωμεν, αλλ' ίνα appears to have translated from ονειδίσωμεν.... Έκ δε τούτων, ως το Musculus' Latin, p. 18, 19.] εικός, μισούμεθα μεν εν τοις έθνεσι:

[ocr errors]


Appeal to the Love of Christian Unity.

PREFACE, shew ourselves each towards other the same which Joseph

and the brethren of Joseph were at the time of their interview in Egypt. Our comfortable expectation and most thirsty desire whereof what man soever amongst you

shall any way help to satisfy, (as we truly hope there is no one amongst you but some way or other will,) the blessings of the God of peace, both in this world and in the world to come, be


him moe than the stars of the firmament in number.

What Things are handled in the Books following.
Book the First, concerning Laws in general.
The Second, of the use of Divine Law contained in Scripture;

whether that be the only Law which ought to serve for our

direction in all things without exception. The Third, of Laws concerning Ecclesiastical Polity: whether the

form thereof be in Scripture so set down, that no addition or

change is lawful. The Fourth, of general exceptions taken against the Laws of our

Polity, as being popish, and banished out of certain reformed

churches. The Fifth, of our Laws that concern the public religious duties of

the Church, and the manner of bestowing that Power of Order, which enableth men in sundry degrees and callings to execute

the same. The Sixth, of the Power of Jurisdiction, which the reformed plat

form claimeth unto lay-elders, with others. The Seventh, of the Power of Jurisdiction, and the honour which

is annexed thereunto in Bishops. The Eighth, of the power of Ecclesiastical Dominion or Supreme

Authority, which with us the highest governor or Prince hath, as well in regard of domestical Jurisdictions, as of that other foreignly claimed by the Bishop of Rome.







[ocr errors]

I. The cause of writing this general Discourse concerning Laws.
II. Of that Law which God from before the beginning hath set for

himself to do all things by.
III. The Law which natural agents observe, and their necessary manner

of keeping it. IV. The Law which the Angels of God obey. V. The Law whereby Man is in his actions directed to the imitation

of God. VI. Men's first beginning to understand that Law. VII. Of Man's Will, which is the first thing that Laws of action are

made to guide. VIII. Of the natural finding out of Laws by the light of Reason,

to guide the Will unto that which is good.
AX. Of the benefit of keeping that Law which Reason teacheth.
X. How Reason doth lead men unto the making of human Laws,

whereby politic Societies are governed, and to agreement about
Laws whereby the fellowship or communion of independent So-

cieties standeth.
XI. Wherefore God hath by Scripture further made known such super-

natural Laws as do serve for men's direction.
XII. The cause why so many natural or rational Laws are set down in

Holy Scripture.
XIII. The benefit of having divine Laws written.
XIV. The sufficiency of Scripture unto the end for which it was instituted.
XV. Of Laws positive contained in Scripture, the mutability of certain of

them, and the general use of Scripture.
XVI. A Conclusion, shewing how all this belongeth to the cause in

question. '[Of this title it may be not im- plete scheme or system, but only to proper to remark, that it

contain methodized

course of means conveys the same idea with observations on those portions of the phrase commonly substituted for Church government, which seemed it, Hooker's Ecclesiastical Polity. It at the time most to require discusdoes not profess to deliver a com- sion.]



Defence of established Things unpopular.

The cause of writing

Ch, i, 1, 2. HE

E that goeth about to persuade a multitude, that they

are not so well governed as they ought to be, shall

never want attentive and favourable hearers; because they this general know the manifold defects whereunto every kind of regiment

is subject, but the secret lets and difficulties, which in public proceedings are innumerable and inevitable, they have not ordinarily the judgment to consider. And because such as openly reprove supposed disorders of state are taken for principal friends to the common benefit of all, and for men that carry singular freedom of mind; under this fair and plausible colour whatsoever they utter passeth for good and current. That which wanteth in the weight of their speech, is supplied by the aptness of men's minds to accept and believe it. Whereas on the other side, if we maintain things that are established, we have not only to strive with a number of heavy prejudices deeply rooted in the hearts of men, who think that herein we serve the time, and speak in favour of the present state, because thereby we either hold or seek preferment; but also to bear such exceptions as minds so averted beforehand usually take against that which they are loth should be poured into them.

[2.] Albeit therefore much of that we are to speak in this present cause may seem to a number perhaps tedious, r perhaps obscure, dark, and intricate; (for many talk of the truth, which never sounded the depth from whence it springeth; and therefore when they are led thereunto they

soon weary, as men drawn from those beaten paths wherewith they have been inured ;) yet this may not so far prevail as to cut off that which the matter itself requireth, howsoever the nice humour of some be therewith pleased or

They unto whom we shall seem tedious are in no wise injuried by us, because it is in their own hands to spare that labour which they are not willing to endure. And if any complain of obscurity, they must consider, that in these matters it cometh no otherwise to pass than in sundry the works both of art and also of nature, where that which hath greatest force in the very things we see is notwithstanding itself oftentimes not seen. The stateliness of houses, the goodliness of trees, when we behold them delighteth the eye;



Ch. i. 3.

[ocr errors][merged small][ocr errors]

Apology for some Abstruseness in the Argument. 199 but that foundation which beareth up the one, that root BOOK I. which ministereth unto the other nourishment and life, is in the bosom of the earth concealed; and if there be at any time occasion to search into it, such labour is then more necessary than pleasant, both to them which undertake it and for the lookers-on. In like manner, the use and benefit of good laws all that live under them may enjoy with delight and comfort, albeit the grounds and first original causes from whence they have sprung be unknown, as to the greatest part of men they are. But when they who withdraw their obedience pretend that the laws which they should obey are corrupt and vicious; for better examination of their quality, it behoveth the very foundation and root, the highest wellspring and fountain of them to be discovered? Which because we are not oftentimes accustomed to do, when we do it the pains we take are more needful a great deal than acceptable, and the matters which we handle seem by reason of newness (till the mind grow better acquainted with them) dark, intricate, and unfamiliar. For as much help whereof as may be in this case, I have endeavoured throughout the body of this whole discourse, that every former part might give strength unto all that follow, and every later bring some light unto all before. So that if the judgments of men do but hold themselves in suspense as touching these first more general meditations, till in order they have perused the rest that ensue; what may seem dark at the first will afterwards be found more plain, even as the later particular decisions will appear I doubt not more strong, when the other have been read before.

[3.] The Laws of the Church, whereby for so many ages together we have been guided in the exercise of Christian religion and the service of the true God, our rites, customs, and orders of ecclesiastical government, are called in question: we are accused as men that will not have Christ Jesus to rule over them, but have wilfully cast his statutes behind their backs, hating to be reformed and made subject unto the sceptre of his discipline. Behold therefore we offer the laws whereby we live unto the general trial and judgment of the whole world; heartily beseeching Almighty God, whom we desire to serve according to his own will, that both we

« PreviousContinue »