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bark and rind of truths, and crack the shells of them, But there is a soul and spirit of Divine truths, that could never yet be congealed into ink, that could never be blotted upon paper, which, by a secret traduction and conveyance, passeth from one soul unto another; being able to dwell and lodge no where but in a spiritual being, in a living thing, because itself is nothing but life and spirit. Neither can it, where indeed it is, express itself sufficiently in words and sounds, but it will best declare and speak itself in actions: As the old manner of writing among the Egyptians was, not by words, but things. The life of Divine truths is better expressed in actions than in words, because actions are more living things than words. Words are nothing but the dead resemblances and pictures of those truths, which live and breathe in actions; and the kingdom of God, as the Apostle speaketh,) consisteth not in WORD, but in life and power.' - Sheep do not come,' saith the Moral Philosopher, and bring
their fodder to their shepherd, and shew him how much they • eat ; but, inwardly concocting and digesting it, they make it appear, by the feece which they wear upon their backs, and by the milk which they give. And let not us Christians affect only to talk and dispute of Christ, and so measure our knowledge of him by our words ; but let us shew our knowledge concocted into our lives and actions; and then let us really manifest that we are Christ's sheep indeed, that we are bis disciples, by that feece of holiness which we wear,* and by the fruits that we daily
• The following beautiful description of Holiness is in the best style of “the judicious Hooker,” and will prove, both to the critic and the Christian, that Dr. Cudworth had read with the deepest attention the productions of that great Divine :
“ GRACE is holiness militant,--holiness encumbered with many enemies and difficulties, which it still fights against, and manfully quits itself of: And GLORY is nothing else but holiness triumphant,-holiness with a palm of victory in her hand, and a crown upon her head. God himself cannot make me happy, “ if he be only without me; and unless he give in a participation of himself, and
his own likeness into my soul.'--Happiness is nothing, but the releasing and unfettering of our souls from all these narrow, scant, and particular good things ; and the espousing of them to the Highest and most Universal Good, which is not this or that particular good, but GOODNESS ITSELF : And this is the same thing that we call HOLINESS.
“Holiness is no solitary neglected thing; it hath stronger confederacies, greater alliances, than sin and wickedness. It is in league with God, and the whole universe ; the whole creation smiles upon it: There is something of God in it, and therefore it must needs be a victorious and triumphant thing.-Wickedness is a weak, cowardly, and guilty thing, a fearful and trembling shadow. It is the child of ignorance and darkness ; it is afraid of light, and cannot possibly withstand the power of it, nor endure the sight of its glittering armour. It is allianced to none but wretched, forlorn, and apostate spirits, that do what they can to support their own weak and tottering kingdom of darkness, but are only strong in weakness and impotency. The whole polity and commonwealth of devils is not so powerful as one child of Light, one babe in Christ : They are not all able to quench lhe least smoking fax,' to extinguish one spark of grace,
yield in our lives and conversations. For "herein,' saith Christ, • is my Father glorified, that ye bear much fruit : so shall ye be my disciples.' Let us not, I beseech you, judge of our knowing Christ, by our ungrounded persuasions that Christ from all eternity hath loved us, and given himself particularly for us, without the conformity of our lives to Christ's commandments, without the real partaking of the image of Christ in our hearts. The great mystery of the Gospel doth not lie only in Christ without us, (though we must know also what he hath done for us) but the very pith and kernel of it consists in Christ inwardly formed in our hearts. Nothing is truly ours, but what lives in our spirits. Salvation itself cannot save us, as long as it is only without us ; no more than health can cure us and make us sound, when it is not within us, but somewhere at distance from us; no more than Arts and Sciences, whilst they lie only in books and papers without us, can make us learned.”
7.-The Re-establishment of Episcopacy, and a comprehensive View
of the Act of Uniformity. In a preceding page, (xciv,) and in other parts of this work, I have shewn the close affinity which subsists between Arminianism and Civil and Religious Liberty. In the long note, page 687, I have also tendered much information concerning the relative political circumstances, in which the English Calvinists and Arminians were placed at the commencement of the Civil Wars. In the preceding extracts from Dr. Cudworth's sermon, he has expressed the same sentiments concerning liberly of conscience, and his being not greatly scrupulous about the externals of
Darkness is not able to make resistance against light, but ever, as it comes, flies before it. But if wickedness invite the society of devils to it, (as we learn by the sad experience of these present times, in many examples of those that were pos. sessed with malice, revengefulness, and lust,) so that those cursed fiends do most readily apply themselves to it, and offer their service to feed it and encourage it ; because it is their own life and nature, their own kingdom of darkness, which they strive to enlarge, and to spread the dominions of: Shall we then think, that holiness, which is so nearly allied unto God, hath no GOOD GENIUS at all in the world to attend upon it, to help it, and encourage it ? Shall not the kingdom of Light be as true to its own interest, and as vigilant for the enlarging of itself, as the kingdom of Darkness l_Holiness is never alone in the world, but God is always with it; and his loving Spirit doth ever associate and join itself to it. He that sent it into the world is with it, as Christ speaketh of himself, “ The Father hath not left me alone, because I do always those things that please him.' Holiness is the life of God, which he cannot but feed and maintain wheresoever it is; and as the devils are always active to encourage evil, so we cannot imagine but that the heavenly host of blessed angels above are as busily employed, in the promoting of that which they love best, that which is dearest to God whom they serve, THE LIFE AND NATURE OF God! “There is joy in heaven at the conversion of one sinner ;' Heaven takes notice of it ; there is a choir of angels that sweetly sings the epithalamium of a soul divorced from sin and Satan, and espoused unto Christ.”
religion, (p. 800,) as the English Latitude-men did in the year 1662. Though attached to the chaste ceremonies of the Church of England, they were not so unreasonable as to number them among the essentials of salvation. They lived to see the truth of that opinion which I have quoted, in page 635, from Grotius, when he recommends the Dutch Remonstrants to adopt Epis, copacy by " receiving imposition of hands from the Irish Archbishop" then in Holland, « and so commence their return to customs which are at once ancient and salutary." This is a high and disinterested compliment to the rites of the Church of England, then in ruins. « Whenever those customs have been despised," Grotius adds, “ the licence for framing new opinions has in“ creased, and has created new churches; and what the articles “ of belief in such churches will be a few years hence, we cannot “determine.”-Having beheld with their own eyes a sad exempli. fication of this religious licentiousness, Tillotson, Burnet, Cudworth, and other great and good men, declared themselves in favour of Episcopal government, as soon as the former unjust restraints upon it were removed, and before that species of regimen was re-established by law. The reader will find, in a subsequent part of this Introduction, the grievous lamentations of the Nonconformists when these eminent individuals refused to join their ranks, and to oppose the rising interests of Arminianism. The accession of such divines as these was most important to Episcopacy. Their principles were generally of a milder and more tolerant complexion, than those of their predecessors; and the fine description, in page 801, is exceedingly appropriate: “ They seemed to be the very chariots and horsemen of the Church,” &c.
These excellent men had not obtained much influence in 1662: Their share, therefore, in the permanent settlement of the Church at that period, was exceedingly slight; and the religious persecution which ensued, does not attach to the Arminians of “ the new learning.” But had their conduct been different, had they even become active partizans in that persecution of Dissenters, many excuses might have been made for them, on the common principles of human nature, and from the peculiar circumstances in which the Episcopal party had been previously placed. · The Act of Uniformity and its concomitants are industriously represented, by the advocates of the party aggrieved, as insulated occurrences unconnected with former transactions. To those who are inclined to give implicit credence to such representations, and, without accurate information, to circulate such reports, it may be well to submit the following account from one of the finest and most impartial biographical notices that was ever written in the English language :*
• The high authority of PARR's Life of Archbishop Usher was demonstrated at the period of its first issuing from the press, which was in the tyrannical reign of King James the Second, who interposed his power to prevent its publication. : « About this time, 1648, whilst his late Majesty was kept prisoner at Carisbrook Castle in the Isle of Wight, the Lord Primate [Archbishop Usher] was highly concerned at the disloyal actions of the two Houses towards their lawful prince: To express which, he preached at Lincoln's Inn on this text, Say ye not a conFEDERACY to all them to whom this people shall say a CONFEDERACY! neither fear you their fear, nor be afraid. Sanctify the Lord of hosts Himself, and let Him be your fear, and let Him be your dread. (Isai. viii, 12, 13.) Wherein he sufficiently expressed his dislike of those Covenants and Confederacies into which they had now entered, contrary to that oath they had taken already, and that we should not fear man more than God, when we were to do our duty to our prince or country. Not long after which, the Presbyterians, finding the Independent party too strong for them, had no way left to secure themselves, but by recalling their votes of non-addresses, and to vote a treaty with his Majesty in the Isle of Wight. And because the differences concerning churchgovernment were not the least of those that were to be settled and concluded at this treaty, and for which it was necessary for his Majesty to consult with some of his Bishops and divines, the Lord Primate was sent for by the King, among divers others, to 'attend him for that purpose. When he came thither, he found one of the greatest points then in debate, was about the government of the church, the Parliament Commissioners insisting peremptorily for the abolishing and taking away Archbishops, Bishops, &c. out of the churches of England and Ireland. His Majesty thought he could not with a good conscience consent to that demand, viz. totally to abolish or take away Episcopal government. But his Majesty then declared, that he no otherwise aimed at the keeping up the present hierarchy in the church, than what was most agreeable to the Episcopal government in the primitive and purest times. But his Majesty (since the Parliament insisted so obstinately on it,) was at last forced to consent to the suspension of Episcopacy for three years, but would by no means agree to
This circumstance is thus related with much artlessness and judgment by EVELYN, in his Diary:
“ APRIL 18, 1686. In the afternoon I went to Camberwell, to visit Dr. Parr. After sermon I accompanied him to his house, where he shewed me the Life and Letters of the late learned Primate of Armagh, (USHER,) and among them that letter of Bishop Brambal's to the Primate, giving notice of the Popish practices to pervert this nation, by sending a hundred priests into England, who were to conform themselves to all sectaries and conditions for the more easily dispersing their doctrine amongst us. This letter was the cause of the whole impression being seized, upon pretence that it was a political or historical account of things not relating to theology, though it had been licensed by the bishop ; which plainly shewed what an interest the Papist now had, that a Protestant book, containing the life and letters of so eminent a man, was not to be published. There were also many letters to and from most of the learned persons his correspondents in Europe. The book will, I doubt not, struggle through this unjust impediment."
take away Bishops absolutely. But now, to stop the present career of the Presbyterian discipline, the Lord Primate proposed an expedient, which he called Episcopal and Presbyterial government conjoined, and which he, not long after he came thither, delivered into his Majesty's hands, who, having perused it, liked it well, saying, “It was the only expedient to reconcile the pre'seut differences.' For his Majesty, in his last message to the Parliament, had before condescended to the reducing of Episcopal government into a much narrower compass, viz. not only to the Apostolical institution, but much farther than the Lord Primate proposed or desired, even to the taking away of Archbishops, Deans, Chapters, &c. together with all that additional power and jurisdiction which his Majesty's predecessors had bestowed upon that function: Which message, being read in the House, was by them, notwithstanding, voted unsatisfactory. So that the Presbyterian party was so absolutely bent to abolish the very order of Bishops, that no proposals of his Majesty, though never so moderate, would content them. Till at last, (when they had wrangled so long till they saw the King's person seized by the army, and that the power was like to be taken out of their hands,) they then grew wiser, and would have agreed to his proposals when it was too late : And so the Presbyterian party saw themselves, within a few days after, forcibly excluded and turned out of doors, by that very army which they themselves had raised and hired to fight against their prince; which, as it was the cause of his Majesty's destruction, so it proved their own ruin.
“ It was not the Lord Primate's design or intention, in the least, to rob the Bishops of any of those just rights which are essentially necessary to their order and constitution, and without abasing Episcopacy into Presbytery, or stripping the church of its lands and revenues, both which the Lord Primate always abhorred: For he was of his Majesty's mind in his excellent Icon Basilicon, • that Presbytery is never so considerable or effectual, as when it
is joined to and crowned with Episcopacy.'— And that the king himself was then convinced, that this was the best expedient for the settling of the church at that time, you may likewise see by what he writes in the same chapter in these words, viz: «Not ' that I am against the managing of this presidency and authority • in one man, by the joint counsel and consent of many Presby. 'ters: I have offered to restore that, as a fit means to avoid those
errors, corruptions, and partialities which are incident to any • one man.'--And so likewise, in the chapter about the reformation of the times, he has this pasage: "I was willing to grant or • restore to Presbytery what with reason or discretion it can pre• tend to, in a conjuncture, with Episcopacy. But, for that,
wholly to invade the power, and by the sword to arrogate and ' quite abrogate the authority of that ancient order, I think neither ' just as to Episcopacy, nor safe for Presbytery, nor yet any way