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Which three branches are proved by Heb. xii. 17. 1 Thes. v. 12. 13. Ezek. xxxiv. 4. p.

Authoritative suspension from the Lord's table of a person not yet cast out of the church, is agreeable to the Scripture :

First, Because the ordinance itself mult not be profaned.

Secondly, Because we are charged to withdraw from those that walk disorderly.

Thirdly, Because of the great fio and danger, both to him that comes uoworthily, and also to the whole churchg. And there was power and authority, under the Old Teltament, to keep unclean perions from holy thingsr.


for you.

ye shall loose on earth, shall be your pearls before swine, left they loosed in heaven : v. 19. again, I trample them under their feet, and say unto you, That if two of you turn again, and rent you. 2 Theff. Thall agree on earth, as touching iii. 6. Now we command you, bre. any thing that they shall alk, it thren, in the name of our Lord Jethall be done for them of my Fa- fus Christ

, that ye withdraw yourther which is in heaven. v. 20. felves from every brother that walk. For where two or three are gather. eth disorderly, and not after the ed together in my name, there am tradition which ye received of us. I in the midst of them.

v. 14. and if any mao obey got p Heb. xiii. 17. Obey them that our word by this epistle, note that have the rule over you, and submit man, and have no company with yourselves, for they watch for your him, that he may be ashamed, v. souls, as they that must give account, 15. Yet count him not as an enemy, that they may do it with joy and not but admonish him as a brother. I with grief; for that is unprofitable Cor. xi. 27. Wherefore, whosoever

you. Theff. v. 12. and we fhall eat this bread, or drink this beseech you, brethren, to know cup of the Lord Jaworthily, shall them which labour among you, and be guilty of the body and blood of are over you in the Lord, and ad. the Lord. See on to the end of the monish you ; v 13. and to esteem chapter. Compared with Jude, v. them very highls in love for their 23. and others fave with fear, pulworks sake. And be at peace among ling them out of the fire ; bating yourselves. Ezek. xxxiv.


The even the garment spotted by the diseased have ye not strengthened, flesh. 1 Tim. v. 22. Lay hands neither have ye healed that which suddenly oo no man, neither be was sick, neither have ye bound up partaker of other mens lios. Keep that which was broken, neither thyself pure. have ye brought again that which, Lev. xiii. 5. And the priest was driven away, aeither have ye shall look on him the ferenth day; sought that which was lost: but and behold, if the plague in his with force and with cruelty have ye fight be at a stay, and the plague ruled them.

spread not in the kin, then the 9 Mat. vii. 6. Give not that which priest shall shut him up seven days is holy unto the dogs, neither calt more. Numb. ix. 7. and thofe



The like power and authority, by way of analogy, continues under he New Testament.

The ruling officers of a particular congregation have power authoitatively to fufpend from the Lord's table a person not yet cast out of the church ;

First, Because those who have authority to judge of, and admit, such as are fit to receive the facrament, have authority to keep back fuch as fhall be found unworthy.

Secondly, Because it is an ecclesiastical business of ordinary practice belonging to that congregation.

When congregations are divided and fixed, they need all mutual help one from another, both in regard of their intrinsical weaknesses and mutual dependance, as also in regard of enemies from without.

Of Classical Assemblies.
HE scripture doth hold out a presbytery in a church. A pres-

, public officers as are agreeable to and warranted by the word of God, to be church-governors, to join with the ministers in the government of the churcht.

The scripture doth hold forth, that many particular congregations may be under one presbyterial government.

This proposition is proved by instances;

1. First, of the church of Jerusalem, which consisted of more CORgregations than one, and all these congregations were under one prefbyterial government.

This appeareth thus:

1. First, The church of Jerusalem consisted of more congregations than one, as is manifeft.


men said unto him, We are defiled and Barbabas had no small dissenti. by the dead body of a man; where on and disputation with them, they fore are we kept back, that we may determined that Paul and Barnanot offer an offering of the Lord in bas and certain other of them should his appointed season, among the go up to Jerusalem unto the apostles children of Israel ? 2 Chron. xxiii. and elders, and they declared all 19. and he fet the porters at the things that God had done with gates of the house of the Lord, that them. 0. 6. And the apostles and none that was uoclean in any thing elders came together for to consider Mould enter in

of this matter. 1 Tim. iv. 14. Neglect not the i Rom. xii. 7. Or miniltry, let us gift that is in thee, which was given wait on our ministering : or he that thee by prophecy, with the laying teacheth, on teaching ; v. 8. Or he on of the hands of the prefbytery. that cxhorreth, on exhortation : he Whea therefore Paul


Acts xv. 2.

Firit, By the multitude of believers mentioned in divers, both bes fore the difperfion of the believers there, by means of the periecutiOnv.

And allo after the difper fion-w. Secondly, By the many apostles and other preachers in the church of Jerufalem. And if there were but one congregation there, then each apostle preached but feldom x; which will not consist with Acts

vi. 2.

Thirdly, The diversity of languages among the believers, mentioned both in the fecond and fixth chapters of the Acts, doth argue more congregatious than one in that church.

* 2. Secondly,

that giveth, let him do it with sim. Howbeit, manỹ of them which plicity: he that ruleth, with dili- 'heard the word, believed, and the gence: he that the weth mercy, with number of the men was about Eve cheerfulneís. Cor. xii, 28 and thousand, Acts v. 14. and believ. God hath set fome in the church; ers were the more added unto the firft apoftles, secondarily prophets, Lord, multitudes both of men and thirdly teachers, after that mi- women, Acts vi, i and in those racles, then gifts of healings, days, when the number of the dishelps, governments, diverfities of ciples was multiplied, there arose a tongues.

murmuring of the Grecians against v A&s viii. 1. and Saul was con- the Hebrews, because their widows fenting unto his death And at that were neglected in the daily ministratime there was a great perfecutie tion. v 7. and the word of God on against the church which was at increased, and the number of the Jerufalem, and they were all fcat. diíciples multiplied in Jerusalem tered abroad throughout the regi greatly, and a great company of ons of Judea and Samaria, except the priests were obedient to the the apofles. Acts i. 15. and in faith. those days Peter stood up in the W AAs ix. 31. Then had che midst of the disciples, and laid (the churches rest throughout all Judes number of the names together were and Galilee, and Samaria, and were about an hundred and twenty.) edified, and walking in the fear of Aas ii. 41. Then they that gladly the Lord, and in the comfort of the received his word were baptized; Holy Ghost, were multiplied. Aets and the same day there were added xii. 24. But the word of God grew unto them about three thoutand and multiplied. Ads xxi. 20. and, souls. V. 46. and they continuing when they bcard it, they glorified daily with one accord in the teinple, the Lord, and said unto him, Thou and breaking bread from house to leelt, brother, how many thousands house, did eat their meat with of Jews there are, which believe gladness, and fingleness of heart, and they are all zealous of the law. V. 47. Prailing God, and having * Aes vi. 2. Then the twelve favour with all the people. And called the multitude of the disciples the Lord added to the church daily unto them, and said, It is not rea{uch as should be saved. Alts iv. 4. fon that we should leave the word


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2. Secondly, All tho e congregations were under one presbyteriał goverment, because, First they were one church y.

Secondly, The elders of the church are mentioned z.

Thirdly, The apostles did the ordinary acts of presbyters as pres byters in that kirk; which proveth a presbyterial church before the dispersion, Acts vii.

Fourthly, The several congregations in Jerusalem being one church, the elders of thar church are intentioned as meeting together for acts of government a; which proves that those feveral congregwions were under one presbyterial government.

And whether thele congregations were fixed, or not fixed, in regard of officers or members, it is also one as to the truth of the proposition.

Nor doth there appear, any material difference betwixt the several congregations in Jerufalem, and the many congregations now in the ordioary condition of the church, as to the point of fixedoels required of officers or members

3. Thirdly, Therefore the scripture doth hold forth, that many congregations may be under one presbyterial government.

II. Secondly, By the instance of the church of Ephesus; for, 1. That there were more congregations than one in the church of


of God, and serve tables.

z Acts xi 30. Which also they y Acts viii. 1. and Saul was con- did, and sent it to the elders by the senting unto his death.

And at

hands of Barnabas and Saul. Acts tliat time there was a great perle- xv. 4. and when they were come cution against the church which was to Jerusalem, they were received of at Jerufalem, and they were all the church, and of the apostles and scattered abroad throughout the re- elders, and they declared all things gions of Judea and Samaria, except that God had done with them. v. the apostles. Acts ii. 47. Praising 6 and the apostles and elders came God, and having favour with all together to consider of this matter the people. And the Lord added v. 22. Then it pleased the apostles unto the church daily such as should and elders with the whole church, be saved, compared with Acts v. to send chosen men of their own Il, and great fear came upon all company to Antioch, with Paul and the church, and upon as many as Barnabas, namely Judas firnamed heard these things. Ads xii. 5. . Barfabas, and Silas, chief men a. Peter therefore was kept in prison, mong the brethren. Afts xxi. 17. but prayer was made without cear and when we were come to Jerusa. ing of the church unto God for him. lein, the brethren received us gladly. A&s xv. 4. and when they were v. 18. and the day following, Paul received of the church, and of the went in with us unto James, and apostles and elders, and they de- all the elders were present. clared all things that God had done a Acts xi. 30. Which also they with them.

'did, and fent it to the elders by the


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Ephesus, appears by Acts xx. 31. b, where is mention of Paul's continuance at Ephelus in preaching for the space of three years; and Acts xix 18, 19, 20, where the special effect of the word is mcotionedc; and v. 18. and 47. of the fame chapier, where is a distinction of Jews and Greeks d; and 1 Cor. xvi, 6. and 9. where is a reason of Paul's stay at Ephesus until Pentecofte ; and v. 19. where is mention of a particular church in the houle of Aquila and Priscilla then at Ephelus f, as appear: Acts xviii 19. 24. 26.8. All which laid togeiher doth prove that the multitudes of believers did make more congregations than one in the church of Ephesus. 2. That there were many elders over these many congregations, as


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v. 9.

hands of Barnabas àrd Saul. AAs word of God and prevailed. xv. 4 and when they were come to dias xix. 10. and this continu. Jerusalem, they were received of ed by the space of two years : fo the church, and of the apostles and that all they which dwelt in Afia elders, and they declared all things heard the word of the Lord Jesus, that God had done with them. vo both Jews and Greeks. v 17 and 6. and she apostles and elders came this was known to all the Jews and together for to consider of this mat. Greeks also dwelling at Ephelus, and ter, v. 22. Then it. pleased the fear fell on them all, and the same apostles and elders, with the whole of thi Lord Jefus was magnified. church, to fend chosen men of their ei Cor. xvi. 8. But I will tarry own company to Antioch with Paul at Ephesus until Pentecost. and Barnabas, pamely Judas fir. For a great door and effe&ual is named Barsabas, and Silas, chief opened unto me, and there are mamen among the brethren. Als xxi. ny adverfaries. 17. and when they were come to si Cor xvi. 19 The churches Jerusaler, the brethren received of Asia, falute you, Aquila and them glauly. v. i8 and the day Priscilla salute you much in the following, Paul went in with us una Lord, with the church that is in to James, and all the elders were their house. pretent, and so forward.

8 Acts xviii. 19. and he came to b Acts xx. 31. Therefore watch, Ephesus and left them there : buc and remember that by the space of he himself entered in the synagogue, three years, I cealed not to warn and reasoned with the Jews. V. 24. every one night and day with tears. and a certain Jew named Apollos,

CA&s xix. 18. and many that born at Alexandria, an eloquent man believed, came and confeffed and and mighty in the feriptures, came th-wed their deeds. v. 19. Many to Ephesus. v. 26. and he began alio of them which used curious arts, to 'peak boldly in the fynagogue, brought their books together, and whom when Aquila and Priscilla had burned them before all men : and heard, they took him unto them, trey counted the price of them, and and expounded unto him the way fuund it fifty thousand pieces of of God more perfectly. Silver, v. 20. So mightily grew the

h Acts

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