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Scripturės; and the true Sense of them, yet fhe Éari do it no otherwise than as the ancient Church did by her Testimony and Tradition, but is she thereföre above them. The true Tradition of the Church conveyed down from Age to Age in the Writings of the ancient Fathers, tells me in what Books they are contained, and that those Books were written by Men inspired by God : But then though I believe them to be such upon her external Teftimo. ny and Tradition, yet I have farther intrinfecal Evidence from the Scriptures themfelves, as the Samaritans; who when they had heard Christ, did not rest in the Testimony of the Woman who brought them to him, but said unto her; Now we believe, nöt because of thy saying, for we have heard him our selvés, and know that this is indeed the Chrift, and the Saviour of the World. All that the Church can do is to attest the Scriptures, and the Sense of them in controverted Points; and her we are ready to hear as she speaks in the ancient Fathers and Councils, who were the living, governing Church in the best and purest Tines. To them our Writers have often told you we appeal, as to judges in all things wherein we differ not only from yours, but other Churches : To them, I say, we appeal to whom every Church ought to appeal in all Controversies when they are truly such, by being lawfully called, and permitted to act freely without Fear, Force, or Corruption, and to examine the Scriptures and the Fathers fairly and impartially, as was wont to be done in the ancient General Councils. But for good Reasons, Sir, we deny your Council of Trent to be such, because it was not a General, but a Particular Western Council, full of unworthy Arts and Influences, Partiality and Corruption, in which nothing was proposed but by the Pope's Legates, Monsieur Rancin's Review of that Council, and Father Paul's History of it will be Evidence against
it, and its proceedings, as long as the World étia dures. For my part I believe that God now as in the Primitive Times, before there were General Councils, allifts a Provincial or a National Council by his Spirit, as much as any General Councils and such we have had many in England since the Reformation lawfully called, and freely acting without Fear, Force, or Fraud, which have rea formed and established our Church in the pure Pria mitive Faith, Worship, and Polity, according to that intrinfecal Right and Power which every Church, National, Provincial, or Diocesan hath to reform it self, and is bound fo to do, when there is Occasion. Wherefore, Sir, I doubt not but Chrift was, by his Spirit, with our English Clergy in their Convocations, which debated freely, and after diligent and impartial examination of the Scriptures and ancient Catholick Tradition establish'd the Reformation, and to that Church so reformed by the divine Aslistance, as an humble Penitent, 1 return. To that Church which for above an Hundred Year's hath been pure in Faith and Worship; apostolical in her Polity and Succession ; decent in her Cerea monies; happy in a valid Ministry, devout in her Liturgy; intelligible in her Worship by her molt illiterate Children; sound in her Catechism, Homilies, and Articles; right and indéficient in her Ordinal; canonical in her Hours of Prayer; judicious and prudent in her Canons and Constitutions; primitive in her annual Feasts and Fasts, and in a word, built in every part upon the Foundation of the Prophets and Apostles, Jesus Christ himself being the chief Corner-stone.
This Church, Sir, hath weeded the Tares the Romanists fowed in her out of her Cori; winnowed the Chaff from the Wheat ; and separated the Dross and baser Mettals from the pure Gold of the Chriftian Religion ; and reduced her felf to the ancient
Use and Standard of the Scriptures, as understood and expounded by the true old Catholick Tradition, as I beg leave to represent to you in some inItances, in which she hath reformed.
Thus she praiseth God, as the Primitive Church did for the Ministry of the Holy Angels, and begs their Protection of God, as Guardians, he hath appointed to watch over us; but she doth not teach us to worship or invoke them. She teacheth us also to honour the Saints, and to praise God for them, both for the Grace he gave them, and for the Benefit of their holy Examples, which we ought to follow, and to rejoice in their Happiness. Such Honour indeed have all his Saints: Honour in honourable Commemorations; but not Worship by Prayers, Altars, and Invocations, which your Church practises contrary to the Doctrine of Scriptures, and Practice of the Primitive Church, as our Writers have shewn.
So the teaches Heaven and Hell to be places prepared by God for eternal Reward and Punishment; and denies not Third Places of Custody or Repositories of good and bad Souls till the Day of Judg. ment, which many of the Ancients believed; but she doth not teach it, or make it an Article of Faith, as your Church doth her Fiction of a Penal, Local Purgatory: Which because you cannot prove to be a true Opinion from Scripture or Antiquity, she expresly denies. O, Sir! how happy would it be for you, and for the Christian World, if your Church would learn her Modesty in being silent, where the Scriptures and Antiquity say nothing; nor make doubtful, and disputable School-points, much less such as are improbable, false, or absurd Doctrines, Articles of Faith.
So all her Offices are penn'd in the MotherTongues of her People. Her French Congregations have them in French, the Welfh People, that
understand not English, in the British, and in the Isle of Man they worship God in the Mansk, as we do in our English Tongue. But your Church is a Barbarian to her People, for she prays in a Tongue even in Rome it felf, which the common People do not understand: So that as our Lord said to his ambitious Disciples, that they knew not what they ask'd, may be truly said of them, that they know not what they pray for, nor to what they say Amen. They, poor abused Souls, cannot pray with the Spirit, because they cannot pray with the understanding ; but blessed be God, the most illiterate in our Communion, if they want not inward Devotion, pray with the Spirit, and with the Understanding allo.
She also ackuowledges a propitiatory Sacrifice, I mean the grand propitiatory Sacrifice, which Christ made of himself once upon the Cross, and allows in her Writers, the ancient diftin&tion of the bloody and unbloody Sacrifice : But then as by the bloody Sacrifice, they understand that of Christ, in which he led his precious Blood for the Sins of the whole World; so by the unbloody Sacrifice they mean the Holy Eucharist or Sacrament of the Altar, in which the bloody Sacrifice is not only commemorated by the Faithful, but, presented before God in its proper Symbols; whereof the one represents the Body, and the other the Blood of Christ crucified according to his own Institution: And this commemorative unbloody Sacrifice, is no otherwise propitiatory than our Prayers are ; to wit, in virtue of that Propitiation which was made by the bloody Sacrifice of Christ upon the Cross. A true and proper propitiatory Sacrifice therefore the Holy Eucharist is not, as your Church absurdly teacheth, though it is a commemorative Sacrifice." I say, as your Church absurdly teacheth in contradiction to its own Canon of the Mass,
where you beg acceptance of your Sacrifice of the Altar through Christ; which you need not do if it were Propitiatory in its own Nature, and by its own Virtue, as that of Christ upon the Cross was: Much more, if by the words of Consecration it be really, truly, and substantially converted into the Body and Blood of Christ; and that his Body and Blood is truly, really, and substantially in the Sacrament with his soul and Divinity, as your Creed asserts. For if the same Christ, who was born of the Virgin, put to Death upon the Cross, rofe again from the Dead, and ascended into Heaven, be corporally present in the Host with his Soul and Divinity, then in effect you beseech God in that Prayer, to accept Chrift on the Altar for Christ's fake in Heaven ; and also 6 beseech
; Christ in Heaven, through Christ upon the Altar, to deliver you from all your Sins.
from all your Sins. Besides, if the fame Christ who offered up himself in a bloody manner upon the Cross, be offered without Blood in the Sacrifice of the Mass; how faith the Apoftle fo emphatically, and so often, that he was once offered to put away Sin; that is, once offered as an all-sufficient Sacrifice for the Sins of the World: For by one offering, one all-fufficient Sacrifice for Sins, he hath for ever perfected them who are fanctified. But according to your Do&rine of the true, proper, and propitiatory Sacrifice of the Mass, it is needful he should be daily offered upon the Altar: And then there are more
• Placeat tibi Sancta Tripitas obfequium fervitutis meæ, & præfta, ur Sacrificium, quod oculis cuz Majeftacis indignus obtuli Tibi fit acceprabile mihique & omnibus, pro quibus, illud obtuli, fir Te miserante, propiciabile, per Chriftum Dominum poftrum. Amen.
• Domine Jefu Chrifti, Fili Dei vivi, doc. libera me per hoc sacro-sanctum Corpus, & fanguinem cuum ab omnibas iniquiratibus meis Lluiverfis malis, &c. Amen.