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refused to conform to their usages. It is not true, that they excommunicated them in the modern sense of the word. The excommunication was nothing more than a separation of their own Church from the communion of the others;—a power which every Church has a right to exercise on just grounds;—and not the impotent pretence of separating the others from the universal Church of Christ. What was the consequence ?-Victor was sharply reprehended by Irenæus; Stephanus is told by Firmilian; "Peccatum quam magnum tibi exaggerasti, quando te à tot gregibus scidisti." Mosheim de reb. Christian, sæc. 3. 1. 18. cons. not.

Again, St. Cyprian calls Rome the mother Church,' and, the root of Catholicity.' In these expressions, Dr. Milner finds an acknowledgment of the universal jurisdiction of that See; and he can discover no denial of it, in Cyprian's resolute refusal to conform with its ordinances. But, as the authority of Cyprian is mainly relied on by the Romanists, instead of following Dr. Milner through the rest of his quotations from the Fathers of a later age, which has been already done by Dr. Grier and others, I shall close my examination of the Romish proof from the Fathers, with some detailed observations on the testimony of the African Bishop. If the Supremacy cannot be established by the practice and opinions of the first three centuries, no subsequent testimony will be sufficient to establish it.

Cyprian, it is well known, is claimed by both parties. Dr. Milner, however, in adducing passages from this Father, which may seem at first sight to support the Papal supremacy, has, according to his usual practice, entirely omitted. to take notice of those which make against his hypothesis, or to endeavour to reconcile the seeming discrepancy of the Father's testi"One of these things, however," says mony. Mosheim, "must be true; either that one of the parties misunderstands Cyprian; or that Cyprian was at variance with himself, and had no clear notions of the nature of Church authority." For the candid exposition of this Father's real opinion, respecting the precedency which he attributed to the successors of St. Peter in the See of Rome, and for the most probable mode of reconciling his various assertions, the reader will do well to consult Mosheim's sensible remarks, in a note on the De Reb. Christianor ante Constant. sæc. 3. s. 23. From that work I shall content myself with bringing together a few passages, in which Cyprian, in the most express terms, denies all jurisdiction in the Roman Bishop over the Church of Carthage; leaving them with this observation, that if the authority of this writer is to be appealed to, the more obscure and doubtful expressions of his meaning, such as are those alleged by the Romanists, are, on every just principle of interpretation, to be explained by those, which are perspicuous and explicit.

The general reason assigned by the

African Bishop for the superiority of the Roman See, is this:-"Rome for its magnitude ought to precede Carthage."* Ep. 49. Hence he calls it," Ecclesia principalis,”—that is, says Rigaltius himself," Ecclesia in urbe principali constituta." In Ep. 55. In his letters to Cornelius, Bishop of Rome, he addresses him on a footing of perfect equality, and freely reproves his errors; which affords a strong presumption, until removed by positive proof, that he admitted no superiority of jurisdiction. In the question of re-baptizing heretics, he acquaints Stephanus with the decree passed in the African Synod, not for the purpose of approval and ratification; but, as he expressly says, "pro honore communi et pro simplici dilectione." Epist. 72. And when Stephanus disapproves the sentence, and returns an imperious answer, Cyprian,so far from submitting, procures the confirmation of the decree in still stronger terms, in another Synod convened for that very purpose. The excommunication issued, in consequence, by Stephanus, was nothing more, as we have observed, than a separation of himself and his Church, from the communion of Cyprian and the African Bishops; and not, as the comparatively modern sense of the word imports, the pretence of separating Cyprian from the Church of Christ. To this pitch of arrogance the Roman Bishops had not then arrived. But, whatever it might have been, it was contemned by the Father and his

* Quoniam pro magnitudine sua debeat Carthaginem Roma præcedere. Epist. 49.

Church. The principle of Cyprian's resistance is best explained by his words. In Epist. 71. ad Quintum, he denies that Peter himself had any primacy of jurisdiction, and if not Peter, much less his successors. "Nam nec Petrus, quem primum Dominus elegit, et super quem ædificavit Ecclesiam suam,........vindicavit sibi aliquid insolenter, aut arroganter assumsit, ut diceret se Primatum tenere, et obtemperari a novellis et posteris sibi oportere.-So far from deferring to the authority of the Roman Pontiff, he extravagantly exalts the rights and independence of the episcopal order. In his address to the Carthaginian Council, he uses these words:" Neque enim quisquam nostrûm Episcopum se esse Episcoporum constituit, aut tyrannico terrore ad obsequendi necessitatem collegas suos adigit; quando habeat omnis Episcopus pro licentia libertatis et potestatis suæ arbitrium proprium; tamque judicari ab alio non possit, quam nec ipse potest alterum judicare. Sed expectemus universi judicium Domini nostri J. C., qui unus & solus habet potestatem et præponendi nos in Ecclesiæ suæ gubernatione et de actu nostro judicandi."Agreeably to these high notions of the episcopal office, he severely reprimands Cornelius for interfering in behalf of the schismatics, Fortunatus and Felicissimus, who had been condemned by the African Bishops. After these, and similar passages which might be adduced, Dr. Milner's quotations from Cyprian may be safely passed over unnoticed.

It is alleged, however, that where Cyprian

was not himself concerned, he fully acknowledged the Pope's Supremacy, by advising him "to depose Marcian, a schismatical Bishop of Gaul, and to appoint another Bishop in his place." End of Controv. letter 46. The words of Cyprian are here misrepresented, or misunderstood. He does but advise Stephanus to write to the Bishops of Gaul in the fullest manner; "ut plenissimas litteras ad Galliarum Episcopos faciat ;" exhorting them no longer to suffer Marcian, the friend of Novatian, to insult the Episcopal College,-"ne ultra Marcianum, Novatiani amicum, Collegio Episcoporum insultare patiantur. Epist. 67. He does not suggest to the Bishop of Rome to depose him by his own authority; and if he had, it would not make for the Romanists' purpose; as in that case, Cyprian must have supposed that the jurisdiction of Rome extended over Gaul, although we find him denying, which is sufficient for our purpose, that it extended to Carthage. He bids him stir up the Bishops of Gaul to the act of deposition." And who knows not," observes Mosheim, “that we daily exhort others to do acts, when we possess no power or authority over them, to enforce obedience?"

In what follows in the 46th Chap. of "the End of Controversy," Dr. Milner exposes himself to graver reprehension. His quotations from the Fathers, he may have taken on trust from the text books of his own Church. His misrepresentation of modern facts lies.

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