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Nor this among

Tradition they say hath taught them, that, for the prevention of growing schism, the bishop was heaved above the presbyter. ****

[Yet] so far was it froin removing schism, that if schism parted the congregations before, now it rent and mangled, now it raged. Heresy begat heresy with a certain monstrous haste of pregnancy in her birth, at once born and bringing forth. Contentions, before brotherly, were now hostile. Men went to choose their bishop as they went to a pitched field, and the day of bis election was like the sacking of a city, sometimes. ended with the blood of thousands. heretics only, but men of the same belief, yea confessors; and that with such odious ambition, that Eusebius, in his eighth book, testifies he abhorred to write. And the reason is not obscure, for the poor dignity, or rather burden, of a parochial presbyter could not engage any great party, nor that to any deadly feud: but prelaty was a power of that extent and sway, that if her election were popular, it was seldom not the cause of some faction or broil in the church. But if ber dignity came. by favour of some prince, she was from that time his creature, and obnoxious to comply with his ends in state, were they right or wrong. So that, instead of finding prelaty an impeacher of schism or faction, the more I search, the more I grow into all persuasion to think rather that faction and she, as with a spousal ring, are wedded together, never to be divorced. ****

That the exaltation of the pope arose out of the rea-son of prelaty, it cannot be denied : ** for if prelaty must still rise and rise till it come to a primate, why should it stay there? when as the catholic government is not to follow the division of kingdoms, the temple best representing the univorsal church, and the high priest

bood. **

the universal head : so I observe here, that if to quiet schism there must be one bead of prelaty in a land, or monarchy, rising from a provincial to a national primacy, there may, upon better grounds of repressing schism, be set up one catholic head over the catholic church. For the peace and good or the church is not terminated in the schismless estate of one or two kingdoms, but should be provided for by the joint consulta tion of all reformed Christendom : that all controversy may end in the final pronounce or canon of one archprimate or protestant pope. Although by this means, for aught I see, all the diameters of schism may as well meet and be knit up in the centre of one grand false,

It was not the prevention of schism, but it was sehism itself and the hateful thirst of lording in the church, that first bestowed a being upon prelaty; this was the true cause, but the pretence is still the same. The prelates, as they would have it thought, are the only inauls of schism. ** Do they keep away schism? If to bring a numb and chill stupidity of soul, an unactive blindness of mind, upon the people by their leaden doctrine, or no doctrine at all; if to persecute all knowing and zealous Christians by the violence of their courts, be to keep away schism, they keep schism away indeed: and by this kind of discipline all Italy and Spain is as purely and politically kept from schism as England hath been by them. With as good a plea might the dead-palsy boast to a man, It is I that free you from stitches and pains, and the troublesome feeling of cold and heat, of wounds and strokes ; if I were gone, all these would molest you. The winter might as well vaunt itself against the spring, I destroy all noisome and rank weeds, I keep down all pestilent vapours; yes, and all wholesome herbs, and all fresh dews, by your violent

and hidebound frost: but when the gentle west winds shall open the fruitful bosom of the earth, thus overgirded by your imprisonment, then the flowers put forth and spring, and then the sun shall scatter the mists, and the manuring hand of the tiller shall root up all that burdens the soil without thank to your bondage. **** We must be confident (then) that your prelaty is nothing else but your ambition, an insolent preferring of yourselves above your brethren ; and all your learned scraping in antiquity, even to disturb the bones of old Aaron and his sons in their graves, is but to maintain and set upon our necks a stately and severe dignity, which

you call sacred, and is nothing in very deed but a grave and reverend gluttony, a sanctimonious avarice; in comparison of which, all the duties and dearnesses which ye owe to God or to his church, to law, custom, or nature, ye have resolved to set at nought. ****

3

THE SECOND BOOK.

How happy were it for this frail, and as it may be called mortal life of man, since all earthly things which have the name of good and convenient in our daily use, are withal so cumbersome and full of trouble, if knowledge, yet which is the best and lightsomest possession of the mind, were, as the common saying is, no burden; and that what it wanted of being a load to any part of the body, it did not with a heavy advantage overlay upon the spirit! For not to speak of that knowledge that rests in the contemplation of natural causes and dimensions, which must needs be a lower wisdom, as the object is low, certain it is, that he who hath obtained in more than the scantiest measure to know any thing distinctly of God, and of his true worship, and what is infallibly good and happy in the state of man's life, what in itself evil and miserable, though vulgarly not so esteemed; he that hath obtained to know this, the only high valuable wisdom indeed, remembering also that God, even to a strictness, requires the improvement of these his entrusted gifts, cannot but sustain a sorer burden of mind, and more pressing than any supportable toil or weight, which the body can labour under; how and in what manner he shall dispose and employ those sumis of knowledge and illumination, which God hath sent him into this world to trade with. And that which aggravates the burden more, is, that, having re

ceived amongst his allotted parcels, certain precious truths, of such an orient lustre as no diamond can equal ; which nevertheless he has in charge to put off at any cheap rate, yea, for nothing to them that will; the great merchants of this world, fearing that this course would soon discover and disgrace the false glitter of their deceitful wares, wherewith they abuse the people, like poor Indians with beads and glasses, practise by all means how they may suppress the vending of such rarities, and at such a cheapness as would undo them, and turn their traslı upon their hands. Therefore by gratifying the corrupt desires of men in fleshly doctrines, they stir them up to persecute with hatred and contempt all those, that seek to bear themselves uprightly in this their spiritual factory : which they foreseeing, though they cannot but testify of truth, and the excellency of that heavenly traffick which they bring, against what opposition or danger soever, yet needs must it sit heavily upon their spirits, that, being in God's prime intention, and their own, selected heralds of peace, and dispensers of treasure inestimable, without price to them that have no peace, they find in the discharge of their commission, that they are made the greatest variance and offence, a very sword and fire both in house and city over the whole earth. 'I his is that which the sad prophet Jeremiah laments : “Wo is me, my mother, that thou hast born me, a man of strife and contention!” And although divine inspiration must certainly have been sweet to those ancient prophets, yet the irksomeness of that truth which they brought was so unpleasant unto them, that everywhere they call it a burden. Yea, that mysterious book of revelation, which the great evangelist was hid to eat, as it had been some eyebrightening electuary of knowledge and foresight, though it were

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