« السابقةمتابعة »
For we confess that herein mediocrity may be and hath been sometime exceeded. There did want heretofore a
Moses to temper men's liberality, to say unto them who [Exod. enriched the Church, Sufficit, Stay your hands, lest fervour
of zeal do cause you to empty yourselves too far. It may be the largeness of men's hearts being then more moderate, had been after more durable; and one state by too much overgrowing the rest, had not given occasion unto the rest to undermine it. That evil is now sufficiently cured: the Church-treasury, if then it were over full, hath since been reasonably well emptied. That which Moses spake unto givers, we must now inculcate unto takers away from the Church, Let there be some stay, some stint in spoiling. If "grape-gatherers came unto them (saith the Prophet), would they not leave some remnant behind ?" But it hath fared with the wealth of the Church as with a tower, which being built at the first with the highest, overthroweth itself after by its own greatness; neither doth the ruin thereof cease with the only fall of that which hath exceeded mediocrity, but one part beareth down another, till the whole be laid prostrate. For although the State Ecclesiastical, both others and even Bishops themselves, be now fallen to so low an ebb, as all the world at this day doth see; yet, because there remaineth still somewhat which unsatiable minds can thirst for, therefore we seem not to have been hitherto sufficiently wronged. Touching that which hath been taken from the Church in appropriations known to amount to the value of one hundred twenty-six thousand pounds yearly, we rest contentedly and quietly without it, till it shall please God to touch the hearts of men, of their own voluntary accord, to restore it to him again ; * judging thereof no otherwise than some others did of those goods which were by Sylla taken away from the citizens of Rome, that albeit they were in truth male capta, unconscionably taken away from the right owners at the first, nevertheless, seeing that such as were after possessed of them held them not without some title, which Law did after a sort make good,“ repetitio eorum proculdubio labefactabat compositam Civitatem.” What hath been taken away as dedicated unto uses superstitious, and consequently not given unto God, or at the leastwise not so rightly given, we repine not thereat. That which hath gone by means secret and indirect, through corrupt compositions or compacts, we cannot help. What the hardness of men's hearts doth make them loth to have exacted, though being due by Law, even thereof the want we do also bear. Out of that which after all these deductions cometh clearly unto our hands, I hope it will not be said that towards the public charge we disburse nothing. And doth the residue seem yet excessive? The ways whereby temporal men provide for themselves and their Families are fore-closed unto us. All that we have to sustain our miserable life with, is but a remnant of God's own treasure, so far already diminished and clipt, that if there were any sense of common humanity left in this hard-hearted world, the impoverished estate of the Clergy of God would at the length even of very commiseration be spared. The mean Gentleman that hath but an hundred pound land to live on, would not be hasty to change his worldly estate and condition with many of these so over-abounding Prelates; a common artisan or tradesman of the city, with ordinary Pastors of the Church. It is our hard and heavy lot, that no other sort of men being grudged at, how little benefit soever the public-weal reap by them, no state complained of for holding that which hath grown unto them by lawful means; only the governors of our souls, they that study day and night so to guide us, that both in this world we may have comfort, and in the world to come endless felicity and joy (for even such is the very scope of all their endeavours; this they wish, for this they labour, how hardly soever we use to construe of their intents); hard, that only they should be thus continually lifted at for possessing but that whereunto they have, by Law both of God and Man, most just Title. If there should be no other remedy, but that the violence of men in the end must needs bereave them of all succour, further than the inclination of others shall vouchsafe to cast upon them, as it were by way of alms, for their relief but from hour to hour; better they are not than their fathers, which have been contented with as hard a portion at the world's hands : let the light of the sun and moon, the common benefit of heaven and earth, be taken from Bishops, if the question were, Whether God should lose his glory, and the safety of his Church be hazarded, or they relinquish the right and interest which they have in the things of this world? But sith the question in truth is, Whether Levi shall be deprived of the portion of God or no, to the end that Simeon or Reuben may devour it as their spoil? the comfort of the one, in sustaining the injuries which the other would offer, must be that Prayer poured out by Moses, the Prince of Prophets, in most tender affection to
Obad. ver. 5.
Flor. lib, jii, c. 13.
* [See Vol. II, p. 408.]
Levi, “ Bless, O Lord, his substance, accept thou the xxxiii. work of his hands; smite through the loins of them that
rise up against him, and of them which hate him, that they rise no more.
* [So many of the preceding Notes relate to the subject matter of this Section, that much which might be added here is forborne : let it therefore suffice that two portions of Scripture are adduced ; namely, 1 Tim. vi. 11. and Matt. v. 43, 44. and that the question be put, Whether that eminent Civilian, SAMUEL PUFFENDORF, has not betrayed the great secret on which an ultra-Scriptural Hierarchy or “ Chiefty” is founded, and for which it is advocated, where he says, “ Not to dissemble the truth, it would appear very ill, if after Princes and entire States have received the Doctrine of Christ, enjoying ample Revenues, they should deal sparingly with the Church; and the more because it is a general maxim among men, to value a Function according to its Revenues ?”—The Nature and Qualification of Religion in reference to Civil Society. 1698. p. 118.]
CONTAINING THEIR SEVENTH ASSERTION, THAT TO NO CIVIL PRINCE
OR GOVERNOR THERE MAY BE GIVEN SUCH POWER OF ECCLESI-
THE MATTER CONTAINED IN THIS EIGHTH BOOK.
1. Whether the Church and the Commonwealth are, with us, the self-same
Community? 2. What the Power of Dominion is. 3. In what measure. 4. Of the Title of Headship. 5. To call and dissolve all solemn Assemblies about the public affairs of the Church. 6. Of the Authority of making Laws. 7. Power to Command all persons, and to be over all Judges in Causes Ecclesiastical. 8. What Laws may be made for the affairs of the Church, and to whom the Power
of making them appertaineth. 9. Of Exemption from being punishable.
1. WE come now to the last thing whereof there is con-[Whe. troversy moved, namely, The Power of supreme Juris- Church diction; which for distinction' sake we call, The Power Comof Ecclesiastical Dominion. It was not thought fit in wealth the Jews' Commonwealth, that the exercise of Supremacy us, the Ecclesiastical should be denied unto him, to whom the same exercise of Chiefty Civil did appertain ; and therefore nity their Kings were invested with both. This Power they 1 Macgave unto Simon, when they consented that he should be 41-44. their Prince, not only to set men over their works, and country, and weapons, but also to provide for the holy things; and that he should be obeyed of every man, and that the writings of the country should be made in his name, and that it should not be lawful for any of the people or Priests to withstand his words, or to call any congregation in the country without him. And if happily it be surmised, that thus much was given to Simon, as being both Prince and High-priest, which otherwise being their Civil Governor) he could not lawfully have enjoyed; we
must note, that all this is no more than the ancient Kings of that people had, being Kings and not Priests. By this power David, Asa, Jehoshaphat, Josias, and the rest, made those Laws and Orders which Sacred History speaketh of, concerning matters of mere Religion, the affairs of the Temple, and service of God. Finally, had it not been by the virtue of this Power, how should it possibly have come to pass, that the piety or impiety of the Kings did always accordingly change the public face of Religion, which things the Prophets by themselves never did, nor at any time could, hinder from being done? Had the Priests alone been possest of all Power in Spiritual affairs, how should any thing concerning matter of Religion have been made but only by them? In them it had been, and not in the King, to change the face of Religion at any time; the altering of Religion, the making of Ecclesiastical Laws, with other the like actions belonging unto the Power of Dominion, are still termed “ The deeds of the King;" to shew, that in him was placed the Supremacy of Power in this kind over all, and that unto their Priests the same was never committed, saving only at such times as the Priests were also Kings and Princes over them. According to the pattern of which example* the like Power in causes Ecclesiastical is by the Laws of this Realm annexed unto the Crown: and there are which do imagine, that Kings, being mere Lay-persons, do by this means exceed the lawful bounds of their callings; which thing to the end that they may persuade, they First, make a necessary separation perpetual and personal between the Church and the Commonwealth: Secondly, they so tie all kind of Power Ecclesiastical unto the Church, as if it were in every degree their only right who are by proper spiritual functions termed Church-governors, and might not unto Christian Princes in any wise appertain. To lurk under shifting ambiguities and equivocations of words in matter of principal weight, is childish. A Church and a Commonwealth we grant are things in nature one distinguished from the other. A Common
* [By this Apocryphal “ example” the Law of God, Num. i. 50, iii. 10, xviii. 7, was evidently perverted, every thing of the altar” having been forbidden to “the stranger," on pain of " death :" see the case of “ Uzziah, the king,” 2 Chron. xxvi. 18. The sophistry of the example is, That if the king might not interfere with the priest's office, yet the priest may become King! As respects us, however, this example is not parallel ; the person, he or she, who arrives at the “Chiefty" having both Civil and Ecclesiastical investiture simultaneously.]