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Yea, which is more, for the confirmation of all the above mentioned points of our religion, we will produce good and certain grounds out of the sacred Scriptures, if the fathers' authority will not suffice. And we do desire any protestant to allege any one text out of the said Scripture, which condemneth any of the above written points : which we hold for certain they shall never be able to do. For indeed they are neither more learned, more pious nor more holy, than the blessed doctors and martyrs of that first Church of Rome, which they allow and esteem of so much ; and by which we most willingly will be tried, in any point which is in controversy betwixt the protestants and the catholics. Which we desire may be done with Christian charity and sincerity, to the glory of God, and instruction of them that are astray.
To uphold the religion which at this day is maintained in the Church of Rome, and to discredit the truth which we profess, three things are here urged, by one who hath undertaken to make good the papists' cause against all gainsayers. The first concerneth the original of the errors wherewith that part standeth charged: the author and time whereof he requireth us to shew. The other two respect the testimony, both of the primitive Church and of the sacred Scriptures: which, in the points wherein we vary, if this man may be believed, maketh wholly for them and against us.
“ First then would he fain know, what bishop of Rome did first alter that religion, which we commend in them of the first four hundred years? In what pope's days was the true religion overthrown in Rome?" To which I answer. First, that we do not hold that Rome was built in a day; or that the great dunghill of errors, which now we see in it, was raised in an age: and therefore it is a vain demand, to require from us the name of any one bishop of Rome, by whom or under whom this Babylonish confusion was brought in. Secondly, that a great difference is to be put betwixt heresies, which openly oppose the foundations of our faith, and that apostacy which the Spirit hath evidently foretold should be brought in by such as