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Mr. Baxters APHORISMS EXORIZED AND ANTHORIZED.

OR An Examination of and Anſwer to a Book written by Mr. Ri: Baxter Teacher of the Church at Kederminſter in Worceſter-ſhire, entituled, Aphoriſms of Juſtification.

TOGETHER WITH A vindication of Juſtification by meer Grace, from all the Popiſh and Arminian So­phiſms, by which that Author labours to ground it upon Mans Works and Righteouſneſs.

By JOHN CRANDON an unworthy Miniſter of the Goſpel of CHRIST at Fawley in Hant-ſhire.

Ipſe fecit nos, & non ipſi nos. Ipſi nos juſtos & ſalvos fecit & non ipſi nos. Auguſt. de verbis Apoſtoli. Serm. 11.

God forbid that I ſhould glory, ſave in the Croſs of our Lord Jeſus Chriſt. Gal. 6. 14.

Imprimatur,

Joſeph Caryl.

LONDON; Printed by M. S. and are to be ſold by T: Brewſter at the three Bibles in Pauls Church-yard: And L: Chapman at the Crowne in Popeſ-head Alley. 1654.

ALthough it be matter of a very ſor­rowfull reſentment to ſee Theologi­call warres renewed among Brethren, yet it is a duty to contend earneſtly for the faith, which was once delivered to the Saints. And although I heartily wiſh that in theſe contentions all perſonal reflections were layd aſide, and opinions onely dealt with; which latter conſideration (How-ever this Author, I doubt not hath ſatisfied his owne Conſcience, and labours much to ſatisfie his Readers about it) hath a little checkt my thoughts in giving an explicite teſtimo­ny to the worke; yet the doctrinal poynts therein maintained and vindicated, The preſent freedome of beleevers from the Curſe of the Law, and their free juſtification by Faith without workes, yea without Faith as it is a work through the alone ſatisfaction of Jeſus Christ, are of ſuch moment and ſo funda­mental in religion for the comfort of poore ſoules, that I cannot but judge any eſſay tending to the clearing of them, much more this large and ela­borate diſcourſe, profitable for the Church of God, and worthy of the publick View.

Joſeph Caryl.

The Printer to the Reader.

Courteous Reader;

BY Reaſon of ſickneſs and many infirmities of Body, diſbling the Author oft from Reviſing the Sheets as they came from the Preſs, during the whole time that the Book was in printing; The work comes not to thy view without many miſtakes in Printing: The moſt conſiderable of them I have here collected to be amended with thy Pen before thou beginneſt to read; The reſt confiſting moſtly in miſ-pointing and miſ-ſpelling, I leave to thy judgement & candor to Rectifie in Reading the Tractate.

M. S.

Errata.

Preface.

PAge 4. line 1. it is not diſtinguiſhed by the Italick Character which are Mr. Brs, and which the Authors words, the quoted place of Mr. Br. will ſhew it. Pag. 10. line 26. for [Catalogus] read [Catalogus] p. 14. l. 7. for [Tenet] r. Tenets. p. 17. l. 19. r. intrinſeal. p. 20. l. 8. r. Communing. p. 33. l. 38. to the word [Logick] add [and the Metaphyſicks] p. 35. l. 2. r. puritate, and l. 11 r. Doctrinae. p. 36. l. 39. r. for.

Part 1.

Arg. of Cha. 1. for [doctrine] r. doctrines. p. 4. l. 5. r. imagin. p. 12. l. 38. r. perſon. p. 19. l. 11. r. ſtuttering. p. 26. l. 35. for [nor] r. not. p. 29. l. 9. for [ſinns] r. ſinn. p. 39. l. 7. for [and] r. in. p. 45. l. 35. add [us. ] p. 64. l. 40. for [Covenants] r. commandements: p. 76. l. 3. for [piece] r. pierce. p. 101. l. 13. r. controvertible. p. 140. l. 23. dele in. p. 227. l. 40. for [for] r. to. p. 235. l. 13. for [united] r. merited. p. 256. l. 1. for [the] r. their. p. 257. for [fruition] r. futurition. p. 264. l. 3. for [innocent] r. nocent. p. 314. l. 33. for [me] r. us. p. 330. l. 1. for [firſt] r. fifth. p. 331. l. 30. for [vindicateh. ] r. vendicateth.

Part 2.

P. 7. l. 19. for [make] r. made. p. 8. l. 2. for [the] r. this. & l. 24. for [ſpitted] r. ſpittled. & l. 34. for [him] r. the Reader. p. 5. l. ult. for [latter] r. letter. p. 11. l. 26. dele not. p. 18. l. 26. add [them] p. 39. l. 32. r. ſcripture. p. 49. l. 26. for [as] r. or. & l. 30. dele to. p. 51. r. operation. p. 54. l. 37. dele the. p. 76. l. 27. for [ſo to] r. to ſo. p. 81. l. 9. for [heare] r. here. & l. 36. for [affection] r. affectation. p. 87. for [in] r. upon. p. 97. for [Mortuum] r. mortuam. p. 139. l. 2. for [is] r. is not. p. 140. l. 33. for [controvertibly] r. convertibly. p. 203. l. ult. to [Proteſtants] add that uſe the word Condition, in Juſtification, & ſalva­tion. p. 206. l. 8. for [given] r. giveth. p. 313. for [and] r. the. p. 240. l. 9. dele there. & l. 32. for [if] r. of. p. 241. l. 22. for [their] r. them. p. 244. l. 17. for [have] r. have made. p. 212. l. 10. dele end. p. 313. l. 12. for [and] r. he. p. 361. l. 6. r. Reſtriction. p. 381. l. 28. for [O] r. ſo. p. 395. l. 35. for [Gratia] r. Gratiae ibid for paraeum] r. parum. p. 382. l. 32. dele and.

TO THE REVEREND, THE FAITHFULL AND Pious MINISTERS of the Lord Chriſt within this Nation.

Much honoured and highly Beloved.

IT might be Conſtrued ſelf-arrogance, that ſo deſpicable a perſon in parts, newly broken out of the black Cloud of Obſcurity, ſhould (not onely pub­liſh to the world, but withall) tender ſo rough-hewen a work to the ſpeciall view & ſcrutiny of them whom Chriſt hath made and named the Lights of the world. But this imputation will appear undeſerved, to as many as ſhall conſider that what is here preſented to ſo great a fulgor of judgement and learning, comes with a requeſt not of Patronage alone, but of Correction alſo. Of Patronage where it defends the Truth in the Truth: of Correction where it halteth into the defence of error in ſteed of the Truth, or of the Truth but not in the Truth. The work it ſelf will ſufficiently ſpeak me out not fit to be regiſtred inter Doctos, yet hath it been ſtill my ſtudy not to commit any thing by which I ſhould deſerve to be pronounced indocilis, untractable to learn where the Lord holds forth a faithfull Teacher. It is the height of my ambition and patheticall heartineſs of my humble re­queſt, not ſo much to all of you Collectively (which is unattainable) as to every of you diviſively, who in theſe ſlippery times (Honored Worthies) ſtand faſt in the truth of Chriſt, to be recalled by you into the way from which you ſhall finde me any where ſtraying: but ſo that by the Authority of the Word you lead me into it, that I may gladly be a follower of ſuch a leader. As to the Book to which this anſwereth, whatſoever Fate this ſhall have in mens judgements, ſurely that muſt have a ſtinch with all the judicious and orthodox. Neither could it ſo long have ſtood unſhaken, had he not cunningly prepoſſeſſed the minds of his Readers with Affection and prejudice, the two worſt Clouds which oft bemiſt the judgement of them that are both pious and prudent, that in ſeeing they do not, becauſe they would not perceive the truth for a ſeaſon. The Affections of many he attracted to himſelf by profeſſing himſelf a zealous Presbyterian. This pretext made not a few to look over and beyond his Contagious doctrine, to behold and regard the perſon of the man for his unanimity with them in diſcipline. This vizzard is at length ſo faln from his Face that the moſt do and all may ſee him under this profeſſion, to have been but as the Anabaptized Jeſuit, taking his ſtation there from whence he thought to have moſt advantage to promote his Po­piſh doctrines, Concluding that under that name his Fraud would not be ſo eaſily eſpyed. And is there now any which ſeeth not he would be Epiſcopal, Presbyterian, Independent, for any Government, for no Government, helping him to drive home to the head his ſoul-ſubvert­ing doctrines into the hearts of men? Prejudice againſt the ſacred Truth which he oppugneth, he fomented by aſperſing the whole Doctrine of the Goſpel and the re­formed Churches of Chriſt with the black brand of Anti­nonianiſm, reſerving onely the Papiſts and Arminians, whom he followeth, free of it. How much he hath pre­vailed in ſowring with the leaven of Scribes and Phari­ſees which is hypocriſie, the vulgar ſort not onely of the people, but of the Miniſters alſo, with this groſs impo­ſture, would be incredible, if experience did not manifeſt it. Therefore finding this Feat ſo ſoveraign to the attain­ment of his ends, aſſoon as he heard of exceptions in the Preſs againſt his Aphoriſms, his firſt indeavours have been to fill with prejudice the minds of men againſt the both work and Author thereof, diſperſing thorow this Citty by his Printer that it is the Hant-ſhire Antinomian that excepteth ſo againſt him. How irrational and malicious this his inditement againſt me is, may appear hence, that I dwell in one of the obſcureſt nooks of this Engliſh little world, ſo unknown as he is famous, that he could not ſo much as hear of my name, ſaving by ſome one of his Cir­cumforaneous Legates (which having their Provinces aſ­ſigned either of one or more Counties, are ſtill Circling and Compaſſing them, firſt to diſperſe this his Myſtery of iniquity with ſuch accurateneſs, that there may be no one that hath the repute of a pious Gentleman or Mini­ſter a ſtranger to it; and then by their frequent viſitations to examine how the Baxterian Faith thrives in each per­ſon, and to hold them fixed to it) Theſe returning once in ſix or ſeven Moneths out of their Circuits to their Grand Maſter may poſſibly ſpeak in things which they know not, what they think may be plauſible to him. It hath not been unknown (I acknowledge) to ſome of theſe that I diſreliſhed his doctrine, and did hinder the embracing of it: But might not this my diſſenting be as properly termed Treaſon as Antinonianiſm?

Yet becauſe I underſtand that theſe ſparkes of falſe fire have no ſooner faln than taken in ſome, I am forced to Apologize ſomewhat (and that with the more Confidence becauſe to you that have the eyes of your underſtanding moſt clear rightly to Cenſure or judge) that prejudice may be no hinderance to the truth. What I ſhall ſpeak herein muſt relate partly to my ſelf, partly to Mr. Br. and partly to the doctrine it ſelf which he hath drawn into Controverſie Condemning it of Antinomiſm.

1 What I ſhall ſpeak of my ſelf ſhall not be with an heart and a heart, the one open to let out what it liſteth, the other reſerved to retein in ſecrecy what is not for ad­vantage to the ends ſought after: but in plainneſs and ſimplicity I ſhall deliver the whole and naked truth of my judgement as before the Lord my Judge and Juſtifier. Neither is there need of hiding and Tergiverſation, for I am not aſhamed of the Goſpel of Chriſt: It is the power of God to ſalvation &c. And as ſweet to me as the ſalvation which it bringeth. I therefore profeſs my ſelf clear from all that is rightly Called, and hath been judged by the reformed Churches and their Champions Antinonianiſm, i. e. op­poſiteneſs to the Law. Theſe things I acknowledg my ſelf to hold and teach: 1 That Beleevers are not under the Curſe of the Law as the Curſe. 2 Nor are the Afflic­tions which befall them ſo the Curſe of the Law, or re­venging puniſhments for ſinn, but the fruits of the tender Love of a good and provident Father working for good to them. 3 That they are not under the Law as a Cove­nant of works. If theſe things be Antinoniſm I acknow­ledg my ſelf an Antinomian: yet ſuch as onely the blind­neſs madneſs and malice of men poſſibly may account ſo, but that I have the Apoſtles and all the Proteſtant Chur­ches and Writers (without any exception) under the ſame aſperſion with me, having all ſtoutly maintained all theſe as Goſpel-truths againſt the falſe Apoſtles, Pa­piſts, and Arminians, in their ſeverall generations, with­out the Contradiction of any except Papiſts and Armini­ans, to whom Mr. Br. not without ſome fellowes, hath lately Apoſtatized. 4 Yet I ſtill grant the preaching of the Law, and that in its full perfection and all its terrors, uſefull to ſhake in pieces all the carnall Confidences and ſelf righteouſneſs of man, that deſpairing of ſafety in him­ſelf, he may be forced to ſeek it out of himſelf from meer Mercy, in another which is Chriſt the Saviour. 5. That the Law is ſtill a perfect rule and directive of all morall righteouſneſs and obedience both to beleevers and unbe­leevers, ſo that in both all variation from it is ſinn, but Conformity to it is regularity and obedience. In reſpect of my judgement therefore about the Law, I queſtion not my diſcharge from the imputation of Antinomiſm among the truly wiſe and orthodox, except to be a Chriſtian be Antinonianiſm.

2 As to Mr. Br, it is evident that he aſperſeth the in­nocent with the Fault whereof himſelf is guilty. He de­nies Chriſt to require under the Goſpel, the perfect holi­neſs and righteouſneſs which the Law commandeth, and Conſequently that it is not either our duty to perform it, or our ſinn to fail in it, or that the Law is an adequate and Competent rule of morall obedience, Becauſe it Com­mands more than it is our duty to perform. He ſaith not Chriſt requires it not in order to this end, but ſimply and abſolutely he requires it not. If this be not Antino­mianiſmPart. 1. p. 213. &c. then Iſlebius himſelf hath been unjuſtly Char­ged with it.

3 As to the matter yet remaining Charged by Mr. Br. and others with Antinomianiſm, it may be reduced prin­cipally to four heads. 1 Juſtification as an Immanent Act in God; As actually Completed in the redemption which is by Chriſt & in Chriſt; (both theſe before we beleeve:) 3 The abſoluteneſs and irreſpectiveneſs of it, freely with­out Conditions: 4 Chriſts ſatisfying for mans ſinns a­gainſt the Goſpel as well as againſt the Law. Though I have ſpoken of all theſe enough, of each in its proper place within this Tractate, yet ſomewhat for the fuller Clearing of my meaning may be ſaid here alſo. The firſt and ſecond I ſhall for brevity join in one as of no ſmall Cognation. As farr as I hold and have declared my ſelf to hold them; 1 I have alſo manifeſted in due place, how they are or ſeem at leaſt to be grounded upon the Scriptures; 2 They are expreſly and boldly aſſerted by many of the moſt Conſpicuous Divines in piety and Learning, that any of the Proteſtant Churches have enjoyed ever ſince the Reformation. 3. And that without the Contradicti­on or exception of any Church or Orthodox Writer for well nigh a hundred yeares, made againſt it: A great and probable Argument that it was the Common Judgement of all the Churches. 4. Mr. Rhaeterfordt in his Exercit. A­polog. holds it forth not as the private opinion of ſome par­ticular men, but as the Common Judgement of all the Churches. And the Remonſtrants take it as ſuch: For ſo I remember they oft argue in their Apol. and elſwhere, Juſtificatio eſt purus putus Actus in Deo immanens &c. not that they expreſs what Arminius his judgment and theirs after him is in this point: but that from this as a conclu­ſion which they knew common to, and would not be de­nyed by any Proteſtant, their Argument would ſtand firm againſt them. Neither know I any one of the Proteſtants that hath written againſt them, excepting againſt it. 5 I never read any (to make me diſſent in judgement from theſe Worthies) that hath given his reaſons againſt it ſave Mr. Br. alone: and he handles the queſtion, like a man ſpoyled with Philoſophy and vain deceit (as the Apoſtle ter­meth the uſe of exotick learning in purely Goſpel mat­ters) after the traditions of men and Rudiments of the world, not after Chriſt; Col. 2. 8. And his nakedneſs in ſuch his arguing is enough diſcovered by a learned Writer whoſe worth I ſhall ſtill honour, but have not ſo much as an Am­bition ever to match. **Mr. Ken­dal. He tells us indeed that Dr Down­ham hath written againſt it as delivered by Mr. Pemble. But I could not get the book to ſee his reaſons, nor know I any thing which he hath written but as I have heard from others. Beſides I have been told that ſome of the late Reverend Synod, diſreliſhed the doctrine, but cannot finde that any one of them hath publiſhed his reaſons for ſuch a diſreliſh. And Charity will not permit me to har­bour the lighteſt imagination that any of thoſe grave Di­vines culld and ſelected out of the whole Nation for their eminency in godlineſs and learning, ſhould without any means uſed for information and conviction, exerciſe a Ty­ranny over the Conſciences of their leſſer brethren to force them into an implicit Faith to beleeve as themſelves beleeve: ſpecially when doing it they ſhall put out that which they think at leaſt to be the light of the word in their conſcience, and in conſenting with them without hearing a reaſon, they ſhall diſſent from others (whom their Modeſty will confeſs to be of no leſs deſervings in the Church) who have given their reaſons.

Yet ſtill I hold, 1 that thoſe Scriptures which treat of Juſtification by Faith do all relate to the tranſient juſtifi­cation which no man partakes of till he beleeveth. 2 That no man is perſonally juſtified, but onely in Chriſt the pub­like perſon, till he be by Faith united to Chriſt. That righteouſneſs and life ſo diſcend to us from the ſecond A­dam, as ſinn and condemnation from the firſt. As by the offence of one judgement came upon all to condemnation: ſo by the Righteouſneſs of one the free gift came upon all to Juſtifi­cation of life, Rom. 5. 18, 19. In Adam the publike per­ſon we were all repreſented, he was all, and we all con­ſidered in him, God ſaw us in all our individuall perſns in him, though we through Adam ſaw it not: ſo that Aam ſinning we all ſinned in him and became dead in law and guilty of condemnation before God, as if we had been then being and actually ſinning. Nevertheleſs as to our ſelves we were not perſonally ſinners and guilty, untill we had a perſonall being in and from Adam. So in Chriſt ſatisfying Gods juſtce for ſinn, the Elect were all repre­ſented as in a publike perſon, ſatisfying in him & by him, and ſo all in him and by him juſtified and abſolved in all their individualls from ſinn and condemnation before God: Nevertheleſs we are not perſonally ſo juſtified, un­till we have a perſonall being and new being in Chriſt and from Chriſt. 3. That this Tranſient Juſtification is a juſtifying or being juſtified before God paſſed at Gods Tribunall ſet up in mans Conſcience, from which he pro­nounceth abſolution to a poore ſinner denying himſelf and reſting upon Chriſt alone for Mercy. So that now, and never untill now he hath boldneſs to pierce by Faith into the Holieſt, and plead his righteouſneſs before him that ſitteth on the Mercy-ſeat. Thus our juſtification which was before in God and in Chriſt, is not at all derogatory to the juſtification which is by Faith: but onely prevents that this latter may not be derogatory to the praiſe of Gods Grace and Chriſts merits, which have completed all without our ſubſerviency for us: and thus God is all, ſeen to be all, and our boaſting excluded. This hitherto is my judgement untill I ſhall be better inſtructed Tu ſi quid noviſti rectius iſtis, Candidus imperti.

And at length if it ſhall be granted to be an error, yet it cannot be Antinomiſm, being a deviation not from the doctrine of the Law but of the Goſpel. It was not the judgement but malice of Mr. Br that gave it this brand of ignominy.

3 To the free abſolute and unconditionall Juſtificati­on, I need not to Apologize for my ſelf at all. It is to the truly pious of the Miniſtery to whom my words are di­rected, who (among other) have given this evidence of your godlineſſe, that ye have not forſaken your first Faith by declining to Popery or Arminianiſm, what others judge of me is to me a ſmall thing (ſaith the Apoſtle of ſuch) I weigh it not. But ye no doubt teach that the ve­ry promulgation of Juſtification runs upon no other con­dition but Faith alone, and upon Faith, not as a quality or vertue, but inſtrumentall to apply the righteouſneſſe of Chriſt to Juſtification, that works and the univerſall conditionall Juſtification which Mr. Br. hath learned of his Maſters, are to be excluded. In this your doctrine is one and the ſame in ſenſe and ſubſtance with theirs that affirm Juſtification to be unconditionall. And it is indif­ferent to me to deliver the ſame truth in their words or yours: Onely I find that they make uſe of both the for­mer and this Concluſion, as ſtrong Fortreſſes againſt Po­pery and Arminianiſm, which cauſeth Mr. Br. with ſo much impetuouſnſſe and impotency to uſe his Mounts and Mines againſt them. Neither can I ſee any ground of objecting that either of theſe two doctrines can in any re­ſpect dull the affections to good works, ſith it is confeſſed that they have no co-officiating with Faith to Juſtifi­cation.

4 To Chriſts ſatisfying for ſins againſt the Goſpel as wel as againſt the Law, I doubt not but ye ſee both the ni­city and falſity of Mr. Brs Negation thereof. The chief Doctrines of the Goſpel are Grace and Gratitude, Juſtifi­cation and Sanctification. If Chriſt hath not ſatisfied for our long unbelief and contempt of the word of Faith be­fore we beleeve, and of the infirmities of our Sanctifica­tion and Thankfulneſſ when we have beleeved; or that there are ſins againſt the New which are not ſins againſt the Old Teſtament alſo; or that the Lord Jeſus is not the Mediator of the New Teſtament but of the Old onely; or that in any of theſe it ſhould be Antinomianiſm to diſ­ſent from Mr. Br: Theſe all are ſo groſſe Paradoxes that your gravity and wiſedom cannot without Nauſeouſneſſ ſmell them: plainly enough declaring indeed that what­ſoever ſtandeth in his way of Babel building he will curſe it (though never ſo ſacred) and fright them that are as feeble as fearfull, with his ſcar crow of Antinomianiſm, though he make himſelf never ſo ridiculous thereby to the intelligent and prudent.

I have no more to ſay upon this ſubject, and what I have ſaid hath been before him that being omniſcient knoweth that I have ſpoken ſingly the whole truth, and nothing but the Truth. Neither can all the ſtrength of my jealouſy ſuſpect any leaſt or greateſt thing beſides theſe wherewith either Mr. Br. or any of his Diſciples cn charge me as with Antinomianiſm, ſo that I do with ſome confident boldneſſe appeal to your judgment whether I deſerve from them this imputation. Inded ſuch ſoul-re­viving comforts have flown in upon me from the Grace of God in Chriſt, that out of the abundance of the heart the mouth will ſpeak, and I can ſcarce Preach any other thing then Chriſt and him Crucified; yet in holding forth a wounded, I hold not forth a maimed Chriſt to the peo­ple, but Chriſt with all his benefits, in particular to San­ctification no leſſe then to Juſtification. If it be Antino­mianiſm ſo to reduce all to Chriſt, and derive all from him, I muſt undergo the worlds condemnation for Chriſts ſake that hath juſtified and will at length receive me.

One thing more I have to add, and I ſhall be no further tedious. It may be a Charge againſt me that I am too plain, broad and unſparing in my words againſt Mr. Br. throughout this Tractate. That which I have to ſay for my ſelf is,

1 That it ariſeth not ſo much from my own temper, as from the occaſion thereof given by Mr. Br. I am ready for Chriſts ſake to become the footſtool of the meek, but where I find a ſelf exalting, I cannot cry Abreoh. When I ſee Mr. Br. uſurping the Chair to paſſe ſentence and cen­ſure upon all the Divines that have written, theſe are lear­ned, thoſe unſtudied Divines, to exalt and degrade better men than himſelf as they are more either concurrent with or abhorrent from his Bellarmin and Arminius: I cannot, I dare not uſe words that might ſtrengthen but rather vili­fie the ſelf confidence and arrogance of the man. So when the Wolf comes in ſheeps clothing to devour, when un­der the profeſſion of a Proteſtant and Preſbyterian Di­vine, he vends his Popiſh and Arminian under the name of Proteſtant Tenets, diſſembling his confederacy with the enemies thereof,

Si natura negat facit indignatio verſum.

The view of ſuch hypocriſy is enough to make a ſheep a Satyriſt. Had I been to deal with a Papiſt or Arminian, that had diſcovered themſelves unmasked, I ſhould have ſpoken in another Dialect.

2 It ſprang from other mens yea Miniſters too much admiration and almoſt adoration of him, when from all parts there was ſuch Concurſe in a way of Pilgrimage to him, to bleſſe him or be bleſſed by him, and the admirers returned to the deceiving of others, with no leſſe applauſ and triumph, than the Turks from viſiting the ſhrine of their Mahomet at Mecha; It was requiſite to diſcover whether he were a God or an Idol to whom ſuch honour was preſented.

3 I have herein Chriſt and his Apoſtles my leaders, from whom though we ſeldome heare a courſe word againſt any other ſort of men, yea of ſinners, yet when they ſpeak againſt Impoſtors and Heretikes, ſpeci­ally ſuch as bring their own works and righteouſneſſe to Juſtification, they ſo ſpeak as if they were made up of bitterneſſe and invectives. Ye hypocrites, ſowred with the leaven, and whoſe doctrine is the doctrine of hypocriſy, Mat. 16. 3. 6. 12. Ye Serpents, a Generation of Vipers, how can ye eſcape the judgment of Hell, Mat. 23. 33. Wo unto you, wo unto you Scribes and Phariſees, hypocrites, for ye ſhut up the Kingdom of God againſt men, ye neither go in your ſelves, nor ſuffer them that would to enter, &c. Mat. 23. 14, 15, &c. Children of hell, blind guides, fools and blind, whited Sepulchres, ver. 15, 16, 17, 27. The Publicans are juſtified rather then you, enter into the Kingdome before you, Lu. 18. 14. Ma. 21. 31. More joy is in Heaven for one ſinner repenting, than 99 ſuch, &c. Lu. 15. 7. Falſe brethren, Gal. 2. 4. Subverters of ſouls, Acts 15. 24. Grievous Wolves, not ſparing the flocke, Acts 20. 29. Falſe Apoſtles, deceitfull workers, transforming themſelves into the Apoſtles of Chriſt, Satans Miniſters transformed into Mini­sters of Righteouſneſs, as Satan transformed himſelf into an Angel of light, 2 Cor. 11. 13, 14, 15. Doggs, evil workers, the Conciſion, Phil. 3. 2. Let them be accurſed, Gal. 1. 8. I would they were cut off, Gal. 5. 12. with many other the like paſſages. It ſavours not of the ſpirit and zeal of Chriſt and his Apoſtles, not to ſpeak home to this kind of men above the reſt. But if I have not fully proved Mr: Brs principles and doctrines to be the ſame in ſubſtance with theſe falſe Apoſtles, as elſwhere in this Treatiſe, ſo ſpeci­ally Part 2. Chap 19. I acknowledge my ſelf not to un­derſtand either Saint Paul or Mr. Br.

My Requeſt now ſhall be ſuch as hath equity in it, that as far as ye find this Tractate Orthodox and Conſonant to ſound Doctrine, ye will be pleaſed to grant it and the Author of it your Patronage, and prayers for a bleſſing upon it, and where ye ſee it otherwiſe, to vouchſafe to its Author your Admonition, not ſuffering him to ſtray, whom charity binds you to reduce into the way. This is deſired as from all ſo from every of you, by

YOƲR Humbly devoted Servant in the Lord Jeſus. JOHN CRANDON.

To the truly Vertuous and Religious Lady, Mar­garet Hildeſley of Hinton, in the County of South-Hampton, the Author wiſheth all Grace and perfections in the LORD JESUS.

Madam,

IT abides (I know) in freſh remembrance with you, by whom, and with what tranſcendent praiſes both of the Worke & its Author the Aphoriſms in this enſuing Tra­ctate examined, were commended to your peruſall, to be an Enchiridion or Manual ſtill in your hand, or rather a Pectorall and Antidote next, your heart to defend it againſt errors and inward Anguiſh. But ſo abundantly hath God enri­ched you with the knowledg of, and zeale for that pretious Mi­ſtery of Christ, that you quickly ſaw the Misterie of iniquity that lurked in it, therefore caſt it aſide as unprofitable, yea noxi­ous. Yet afterward finding ſome of the Miniſters with whom you had acquaintance, deceived by it, you intreated me to take it, and give you my judgment of the worke, and my exceptions againſt ſome Miſtakes in it. And as the deceit wasurther pro­pagated, ſo you urged me to increaſe my exceptions, and now at length that which was not purpoſed at first is come forth to pub­lique view, an Anſwer to Mr. Brs Aphoriſms. Alas that wee are brought forth in ſuch an Age, wherein the defence of Chriſts cauſe is left to fools and carkaſſes of men, the Learned and po­tent declinng the ſervice; that in the midſt of our Civill, or rather uncivil broyls one againſt another, there ſhould be found ſuch as fall foule with the Grace of God and Merits of Chriſt al­ſo: that to preach the Goſpel of Chriſt purely, after the example and precepts of Paul and Luther ſhould render a man in the o­pinion of ſo many, an Heretick; but to follow Arminius and Bellarmine, gets applauſe: that we are forced to ſee men vio­lent and uſing force to ſubvert, not to enter into the King­dom of Chriſt. If thisreatiſe ſhall by the aſſiſtance of Gods mercy, be in any degree helpfull to cure this Malady, they that finde or ſee the benefit, are bound to praiſe God for you, that by you as a ſpeciall inſtrument inſtigating, it came to ſee the Light. Whatſoever weakneſs there is in it, will redound to the ſhame of the Author, not at all reflect upon you, whoſe deſire it was (could you have attained it) to have had the best Patron employed in the defence of the beſt Cauſe.

I expect that Mr. Br. will come forth, and that ſpeedily with a vehement Reply. But whatſoever he ſaith, I ſhall follow the precept of the Apoſtle, Tit. 3. 10, 11. He hath had a firſt, and two hundred of Admonitions (as they report which come from him) which he laies as heaps of ſand, not anſwering any of them, how ſhould I follow the Apostles precept in not rejecting, in ha­ving any thing more to do with him. The preſent Worke had no other relation to him, but as to the undeceiving of the ſimple which had received infection from him. But if my beloved and Reverend Brother in the work of the Lord, which commended to you Mr. Brs Aphoriſms, and hath made it long his work to pro­pagate it through many Counties, yea undertaken in the Weſtern Counties to be the defnder of all that Mr. Br hath written in that Book (the performance whereof is by many Miniſters there expected) will take it up as his task to Apologize for him, and affirm the Apology (as in his name) ſo to be his owne; I ſhall in deſpight of all infirmities of mind and body, ſo long as breath laſteth, by Gods aſſiſtance Anti-apologize for Chriſt, and that not in ſuch an expreſſion of words as I have uſed to M. Br (whom I look upon as an Impoſtor) but in ſuch a ſpirit of meekneſs and Reverence, as is meet to be uſed towards ſo pious and learn­ed a Divine, who cannot, dares not againſt the light of his con­ſcience hold any Truth of God in unrighteouſneſs.

The Lord give unto you to keep your station firm in the Light and heat of the Sun of Righteouſneſs, that the ſplendor thereof may more and more ſhine into your underſtanding, and the heat thereof more inflame your affections to the pure Goſpel of Chriſt, that you may be able to comprehend with all Saints what is the breadth and length and depth and height: And to know the love of Chriſt, which ſurpaſſeth all knowledg, and be filled with all the fulneſs of God. This is the request of

MADAM
Your humble ſervant and daily Remembrancer at the throne of Grace, J: C:

THE PREFACE TO THE READER.

Courteous Reader,

IF thou knoweſt me as well as I know my ſelfe, thou wilt alſo wonder as much as my ſelf, to ſee me ap­peare in Print, ſpecially in ſo Momentous a Cauſe, and that againſt ſo formidable an Antagoniſt. But the ground of our wondering may ſomewhat dif­fer. That which affects thee may be, that a man of ſo deſpicable parts ſhould dare to brandiſh a weap­on (though the Lords) againſt ſo great & incomparable a Cham­pion, as fleſh and blood accounts him. But the thing which affects me is, that the Heroick Worthies of our Land hide their heads, and Come not forth to helpe the Lord againſt the mighty, Jud. 5. 23, but leave the defence of Chriſts cauſe to contemptible and unqualified per­ſons for ſuch a performance. In excuſe of my ſelfe againſt the im­putation of raſhneſſe and preſumption, I can ſay, Mr. Baxters A­phoriſms had been extant full three yeares, before I put pen to pa­per to except againſt him. A ſtrong expectation ſtill poſſeſſed me of ſeeing ſomething come forth againſt him from an abler hand. When my expectation failed, and I found his Tractate of all other that have come forth theſe many yeares, moſt perillous, and per­nicious, as deſtroying the very foundation of a Chriſtians hope and comfort, at length I thought it fit to do my endeavour for the un­deceiving of ſome private Friends either taken, or in danger to be taken in his ſnares, not ceaſing ſtill to expect the publication of ſome work by others, openly to vindicate the grace of God from his injurious warring againſt it. At length, having finiſhed what I thought fit to be communicated privately to ſome friends, and not with-holding the view thereof from any that craved it; I ſuffered it to ſleep many moneths, in hope ſtill to ſee a more learned an­ſwer to his worke. What ſhould I do more? May not I juſtly ſay with David, when all the armed Worthies of Iſrael either fled, or at leaſt ſhunned the encounter, was there not a cauſe to ſtand forth (for lack of better weapons) with a ſling and a ſmooth ſtone, truſting in the name of the God of Iſrael, whoſe grace this man had defied? When the wiſe and prudent, the high Prieſts, Scribes and Phariſees oppugned the grace of God in giving Chriſt to be the juſtifier of Publicans, Harlots, and Sinners, the ſpirit of Chriſt enlarged the hearts of the illiterate and vulgar to ſing their Hoſannahs, and out of the mouths of babes and ſucklings ordained praiſe to himſelfe: Nay, if theſe ſhould hold their peace, the very ſtones ſhould cry out, ſaith our Saviour. When the caſe is like it at preſent, and the Angelici Doctores are ſilent, it is the fit ſeaſon for Chriſt to animate the very Terrae filios, to ſpeak in the defence of his grace. I held my ſelfe the unfitteſt of many (if not of all) to come upon this ſtage; yet not ſo unfit, but if none elſe would, I tooke my ſelf obliged to aſcend it. Yea ſuch is the power of Truth, this Truth of Truths, this great and cardinall truth here controverted, that I feare not by the word, and in the Spirit of the Lord Jeſus, to enter the Liſts with all men and Devills that ſhall oppugn it; ſo vain a ſhadow is all the wiſdome and ſophiſtry of men, and depths of Satan, when oppoſed to the Goſpel of Chriſt which is the power and wiſdome of God.

It will next be objected, that this Tractate of mine comes forth into publique view more raw, rugged, incompendious, and unpo­liſhed, than befits the Majeſtie of the Doctrine whereof it treateth. I doe not, I cannot deny it. I ſaw what ſhould have been done more, but was not in a capacity to do it. That which I can ſay for my ſelf is, 1. That it was written for private uſe, without a­ny purpoſe to make it common, untill I came to the latter part, and almoſt the end of it. 2. My acquaintance knoweth how ma­ny, and how long interruptions of ſickneſſe I had in the writing thereof, that I was but Canis ad Nilum, did all by ſnatches, which much hindered the right compoſure of the whole, and connexion of its parts. 3. I could not find one man about us that vel prece vel pretio, was fit and willing to tranſcribe one Copie thereof, nei­ther was in ſtrength of body to do it my ſelfe: So that what was firſt done, in the ſame Craſſo filo in which it was firſt done, without any abreviations, alterations, or poliſhings, is now preſented to the Printer to be made uſe of: My judgment telling me that rather a courſe piece, then nothing at all ſhould appear againſt Mr. Bax­ter, at leaſt to invite others that excell in abilities of minde and bo­dy, to come after with a more exact Treatiſe. If all this excuſe not, and that the Velle be no fit Apology to take off the crime of Non Poſſe, I am contented to lie under Cenſure: yet with this com­fort, that the leſſe of man, the more of God is to be found in theſe fruits of my Labours; All that is therein being grounded upon the ſure word of God, whoſe plainneſs hath more excellency in it then all mans accurateneſſe.

It remains, that before I diſcend to give my particular excepti­ons againſt the Doctrine of this Tractate of Mr. Baxter, ſomething be premiſed. 1. Of the Author, 2. Of the worke in generall, 3. Of my intention in excepting againſt it. The miſtake of the two former more deluding ſome unwary perſons (as I have obſerved) then all his arguments of themſelves could do. 1. Then of the Author.

I can ſpeak nothing of him from my owne acquaintance with him. For, Albus an ater, homo ſit neſcio, I was never ſo happy or un­happy to ſee his face, therefore muſt ſpeak of him partly as he hath been repreſented and deſcribed by others, partly as he makes out himſelf.

1. Touching his learning, as he hath been magnified by others, ſuch he manifeſteth himſelfe. He that ſhall peruſe this one Tractate of his, muſt be forced to cry out, Quantus, quantus, nil niſi ſapientia eſt, a deep and meer Philoſopher (I ſay not Philoſophaſter) yea Grammaticus Rhetor Geometres, &c. In all partt of humane learning a Cathedrall Doctor: But his Maſter-piece is Sophiſtry, in this way of the worlds ſublimated Divinity; he is not behind the Angelicall and Seraphicall Doctors, Thomas and Scotus, and their followers. As for that lower and meaner region of Learning, viz. Scripture, and more ſpecially Goſpel-knowledg, himſelfe tells us that his ſtanding and underſtanding is mounted above that mentioned, Job 8. 9. That for lack of other work, and through the defect or abſence of better Books, he once read the Scripture ſix dayes together, inAppend. pag. 110, 111. which time he ſuckt much more out of the Word, then ever God breathed into it, which he confeſſeth he could not have done of himſelfe, without the help of other Books which he had formerly read, i. e. without the gloſſes of the Schoolmen and Jeſuites, which know ſo much of Chriſt, as their Maſter Ariſtotle could teach them. And that this man underſtands the Scriptures no leſſe compleatly than the worſt of them in a Catholique ſenſe, we ſhall finde I doubt not, when we come to examine the Texts which he brings to prove his Catholique Juſtification.

2. As for his piety, ſtrictneſſe, mortification, holineſſe, zeal, &c. in reſpect whereof ſome have even canoniz'd him for a matchleſſe and ſuper-eminent Saint (as I have underſtood by many in the Weſtern parts, before I ever ſaw any of his works) I ſhould ſay e­nough in ſaying over what Dr. Twiſſ. hath written in his Anſwer to the Preface and Prefacer unto Arminius his Anti-perkinſinianiſm, where the Prefacer in the ſame manner exalteth the parts and ver­tues of Arminius, thereby to make way into the hearts of men to re­ceive his Doctrine. The Dr. acquitting himſelfe firſt of any diſlike that he hath of the piety of children in advancing their Fathers praiſe, and affirming his deſire herein to proceed no further then to lay downe a caution, that the truth may receive no damage by the ſuperlative praiſe of any man; anſwers, That although there might be oppoſed againſt Arminius that diſſent from him in iudgment, even the whole cloud of Proteſtant Divines, the very lights of the Church, that in parts and vertues were no way behind Arminius, if not his ſuperiours; yet he will not do it, becauſe nei­ther hath God commanded, nor is it ſafe for us to make the ſplen­dor of mens perſons, but the infallible word of the moſt High, our rule to judge of Doctrines, and try the opinions of men.

But I adde ſecondly, That it hath been uſuall to Satan in all a­ges to employ whited Sepulchers, beautifull without, to broach and defend Hereſies in the Church. He wants not his depths, is not ignorant that men of vitious lives are unfit to deceive and pervert conſciences. Therefore when himſelfe will deceive, he puts off his Devils face, and transforms himſelfe into an Angell of Light: No mar­vaile then if he teach his Miniſters, when they are about to ſeduce, to transforme themſelves into Apoſtles of Chriſt, and Miniſters of Righteouſ­neſſe, 2 Cor. 11. 13. 15. Where hath there ever been more ap­pearance of holineſſe (and men cannot ſearch the heart) then in the Scribes and Phariſees? Then in the Monks and Fryers? then a­mong the Socinians, yea among the very Turkes? Shall then the out­ward varniſh of their ſeeming vertues, befool us to drink downe their damning doctrines?

3 Though Paul or an Angel from Heaven preach unto you another Goſpel, let him be accurſed, Gal. 1. 8. ſaith the Holy Ghoſt; but whe­ther Mr Baxter doth in this Treatiſe bring us another Goſpel, his Doctrine in the Examination thereof will manifeſt.

4 I would that this his Treatiſe did ſpeak him out to be ſo ſtri­ctly and tenderly conſcientious as his friends proclaim him; I ſhould then either in perſon have made recourſe to him, to com­municate my thoughts to him, or written in another tone, in the ſpirit of meekneſſe to him, to have received fuller ſatisfaction from him, if my impotency could not have miniſtred ſome information to him. But we ſhall find in what he writes, many things that may work in us a jealouſie of the ſincerity of a ſanctified Con­ſcience in him. I ſhall here mention ſome generals, leaving the reſt untill we come to except againſt the particulars.

One thing that occaſioneth this jealouſie, is the want of ingenu­ity, truth and ſimplicity in his Aſſertions. For one inſtance hereof we need not ſtep further then to the title of the work, where he af­firms it to be publiſhed eſpecially for the uſe of the Church of Ke­derminſter in Worceſterſhire. Can any man that hath but glanced an eye on the ſurface of humane literature, think him to mean as he ſpeaketh? Either we muſt conclude that he hath the very ſpirit of all Philoſophicall and Metaphyſicall learning, which he breaths forth as effectually upon his Diſciples, as Knipperdoling did the Ho­ly Ghoſt upon his Anabaptiſts; or elſe his Church for the greateſt number of its members is not in a capacity of underſtanding him. That his Church by his preſidency in it, is on a ſudden become a Najoth in Ramah, every Saul that comes neer it doth philoſophari, if not prophetare, ſo that ex ejus Ludo tanquam ex equo Trojano innumeri principes exiêre (Pauls Princes, I mean Princes in ſecular wiſedome and learning, 1 Cor. 2. 6. 8. ) elſe if his people have no ſuch inſpi­ration above other Churches, ſurely the moſt of them ſtagger at the firſt word in the title of the Book, underſtand not the tenth part of his ſacred ſubtle diſtinctions, but in moſt things that he ſaith he is to them a Barbarian, and they to him. Nay Mr Baxter is not a no­vice, he knowes where and for what mouths to chew his morſels, and to whom to give them to be chewed. It was eſpecially for the nimble wits and logicall Teachers of the Churches, that this broth was boyled (as I ſhall ſhew more fully afterward) that having miſled the leaders, he might by them miſlead their flocks alſo. 2 And as little ingenuity and truth is there in him, where he quoteth ſome whom he (againſt his ſtomach) cals Orthodox Divines, and from ſome locutions and fragments of their ſentences, concludes them to be of his Judgement; when he knowes their Doctrine about Ju­ſtification, to be ſo diametrically oppoſite to his, as hell to heaven, and Antichriſt to Chriſt: ſo that if they be Orthodox, himſelfe muſt needs be Hetorodox. This he well knowes, but his ingenuity and ſingle-heartednes hides it, and pretends the contrary. 3 Is not his face Ferry-man-like one way, and his motion another, when the whole tenor of what he writes is not to ſet up any new opini­on, but to erect again, and put life into that curſed Hereſie of the Papiſts, Juſtification by Works; yet to hide his purpoſe from them that ſee not, or will not ſee, he ſometimes ſolemnly profeſſeth be­fore God, that it is no affectation of ſingularity that drew him to this Judgement; at other times falls foul with the Papiſts, telling us that no advantage is to be given to the Papiſts in this Doctrine of Juſtification, when himſelfe all the while is ploughing their field, and ſtrength­ening their hands to the offence of all the truly wiſe and godly: what hypocriſie, ſembling and diſſembling is this? Why doth he acquit himſelfe of that which no man chargeth upon him? What underſtanding Reader of him can harbour one thought of his bend­ing to ſingularity / It is plain to every eye that is open, that he walks not ſolitary, but hath thronged himſelfe into the commu­nion of the Holy Mother Church, and fellowſhip of all her Saint Popiſh Schoolmen, Monks, Fryers, and Jeſuites. That his ſtudy is to lay an odium implicitely and in the dark upon us, I mean not onely all the Orthodox Divines, but alſo all the Reformed Church­es that have been, or now are, that they are all guilty of ſingula­rity, ſeperation and Apoſtacy, in departing from the Romiſh Syna­gogue in the Doctrine of Juſtification; therefore hath he ſpread his nets to catch as many as he can, to carry them back into Babylon a­gaine. Let Mr Baxter have (as he hath) a confident and ſwelling opinion of his owne abilities, but let him not ſo abuſe all others, as if ſtar-like their light muſt be totally dazled at the approach of his ſuppoſed ſun-beams. Wretched England, if all her Seers are be­come blind, and none can diſcern Chriſt from Antichriſt, even in his myſtery. Nay let him know that there are many which ſee and deteſt what he hath written, no leſſe then if it had been ſent by the Popes own Legate, to beguile. Ingenuity, truth, and ſinceri­ty would have acted another way. Mr Baxter if he had been ſea­ſoned therewith, would have plainly acknowledged, that he had examined the Controverſie between us and the Papiſts, about Ju­ſtification; that as far as his comprehenſion can reach, he finds them in the truth, and us erroneous: and then ſhould have alled­ged the Scriptures and other Arguments which they produce for the eſtabliſhing of their Tenents, and the Exceptions which in the Reformed Churches have been made againſt ſuch Arguments; and ſhewed the invalidity of thoſe Exceptions, in no wiſe anſwering or weakning the Popiſh Reaſons, by means whereof his judgement and conſcience force him to ſide with them, and not with us. Thus candour and conſcience would have wrought upon him; for he cannot deny, but that both he cloſeth with them in the ſame con­cluſions, and that all the Scriptures, Arguments and diſtinctions (ſcarce any excepted) which he brings for the promoting of ſuch Concluſions, are taken from the Papiſts, and have been anſwered over and over a hundred times, by our Divines. Therefore to ſet forth his Aſſertions as new, and to annex his Reaſons for the con­firmation thereof, as now firſt heard of, argues intolerable impu­dency in his daubing and diſſembling. To have dealt thus candidly and conſcientiouſly, would have excited many learned and holy men to a lovely conference with him, which now contemn him as a ſeducer, and ſeduced; but if this had been done, where ſhould the crooked Serpent, and working of Satan, and Deceivablenaſſe of unrighte­ouſneſſe, which ſtill accompany that Man of ſin, and thoſe that beare his marke, have appeared? 2 Theſſ. 2. 9, 10.

4 And his doubleneſſe and liegerdemain is no leſſe exerciſed, in that thorow-out his Treatiſe, he is ever and anon ſparkling his fire-brands againſt the Antinomians, thereby ſecretly inſtilling into his unwary Readers, that it is againſt them this his work mainly le­velleth; when contrariwiſe under this name and mask, his War is againſt all the Orthodox Churches and Divines that are or have been ſince the Reformation.

Theſe all with him are Antinomians, as himſelfe ſometimes when they ſtand in his way and ſtirr his paſſion, doth ſomewhat incon­ſiderately ſpeak out, telling us that he meanes that Antinomianiſm, whereof Dr. Twiſſ and Mr. Pemble bear up the pillars, pag. 73. and conſequently whereof Luther, Calvin, and the reſt Divines and Mar­tyrs employ'd in the Reformation have re-edified the walls, yea Paul and Chriſt himſelf have laid the foundation. But this craft he learn'd (as the reſt) from his Maſters the Monks and Jeſuits, who when they ſet themſelves to batter the truth of Chriſt, cry out in their Pulpits and Writings againſt the Huguenots, Lutherans, Here­ticks, laying ſuch ſlanders on the truth and them which teach or hold it, that they may ſtirr an Odium in the people, among whom there are ſome ſo ignorant, that dwelling at a diſtance from the Proteſtants, and having never ſeen any of them, they think them not to be men (having heard ſo much evill of them) but ſome Monſters and Devils flown lately out of the bottomles pit, to trou­ble and deceive the world. Therefore are filled with ſuch preju­dice againſt their Doctrine, that if they were told theſe Hereticks ſay Chriſt is the Son of God and Saviour of the world, they would (in hatred of the ſuppoſed Hereticks) be ready to reject both Chriſt and ſalvation, leſt they ſhould ſeem to hold with them. Mr. Bax­ter needs not the incitation of any ſpurr to follow, having ſuch Leaders, and the opportunity alſo ſerved to his ends. He hath ta­ken full notice, that in theſe laſt yeares among the greateſt, i. e. the vulgar part of our Miniſters, the name of Antinomianiſm hath been the worſt abhomination, and that they have ſo inveigled their cre­dulous congregations with the feare and hatred of it, that any Pha­riſaicall, Monkiſh, or Jeſuiticall ſpirits, that would but cry aloud and lift up their voyce againſt Antinomians, found welcome not only to their perſons, but to the whole galley-maufry of for­malities, moralities, wood, hay, and ſtubble that they ſcattered a­mong the people. When contrariwiſe, if any ſhould but often name Chriſt and Grace in his Sermon, all were ſhie of him, turned their heels in ſtead of their faces towards him and his Do­ctrine, though never ſo pretious and wholſome, fearing ſome tin­cture therein of Antinomianiſm. This advantage therefore hath hee taken to batter the Doctrine of the Goſpel, under the name of An­tinomiſm, knowing that if Chriſt himſelf ſhould again deſcend from heaven to preach it in his own perſon, he ſhould under this vizard, finde contempt of himſelf and his Doctrine among the vulgar. I ac­knowledg every divine truth to be ſo ſacred and pretious, that we ought to defend and redeem it from oppreſſion with our very blood. Whatſoever therefore of errours againſt the truth the Anti­nomians (truly ſo called) have broached, wee ought with all our ſtrength to reſiſt and reject. And hereof I ſhall have occaſion to ſpeak more fully afterward. In the interim I may lay down ſafely and truly theſe two aſſertions.

1. That Mr. Baxters principall aime is by this odious term to fright weak and inconſiderate perſons from the truth of Chriſt.

2. That all that catalogue of errors which Sleidan in his Com­mentaries aſcribeth to the Antinomians of Germany about 100. years ſithence; and al the tenents of thoſe that among us are or have bin Antinomians indeed (as farr as in my acquaintance with them I could ever gather from them) contein not a mole-hill in compa­riſon of that mountain of evill and miſchief, that by this Treatiſe Mr. Baxter would hurl upon us.

A ſecond thing which miniſters occaſion to us to doubt of this mans ſpirituall conſcientiouſneſſe, is his prophaning and vilify­ing of holy things. We find him oft in this proſtating religion, conſcience, and the word of God it ſelfe, to the cenſure and ſen­tence of reaſon, yea of naturall and carnall reaſon: and that, thoſe very things which reaſon cannot comprehend, even things which eye hath not ſeene, nor eare heard, neither hath it entred into the heart, but are revealed onely by the word and ſpirit, 1 Cor. 2. 9, &c. Theſe are the myſteries of the Goſpel, Juſtification, Adoption, &c. when Mr. Baxter at ſome times cannot poſſibly evade ſuch Scriptures as diſ­cover his errours, with what vehemency doth he forth-with lay hold on them to ſacrifice them to ſenſe and reaſon, yea to that which is worſe then ſenſe and reaſon? Flectere ſi nequeat ſuperos, A­cheronta movebit, when heaven is againſt him, he appeals to hell to ſpeak for him, ſummoning together not only the Jeſuites, but the very Ghoſts of the moſt curſed Hereticks by their authority to ſet­tle his conſcience, and ſubject the word to it. Inot here want­ing that trembling at Gods word, which is required and found in the Saints? He doth rarely indeed mention the Authors whom he followeth as his Maſters, but that is of craft, that he might not caſt an Odium upon his Doctrine, he thinks it more fit to offer it as ſome ſacred thing ſpun out of his own brain, that there might be the leſſe ſuſpicion of it. But that it is drawn out of thoſe channels which I have mentioned, I ſhall be ready to ſhew in particulars, if any doubting ſhall demand it of me. Neither let it offend, that in groſs and courſe terms I ſpeak the truth of the Author. It is whol­ly againſt the bent of my diſpoſition ſo to do, were it not that it is the very foundation of all our hopes that is by him battered, and that the profuſe commendation which ſome have given of the man, to draw Diſciples to him, did not force me to ſpeak unſparingly (while truly) to undeceive ſome of my friends, that through cre­dulity either are or might be ſeduced.

Thus far of the man as he hath been repreſented by others, I ſhal ſay ſomething of him alſo as he renders himſelf to us by this Trea­tiſe. I cannot, I will not think him one that is wilfully apoſta­tiz'd. But finding him a man of excellent both naturall and acqui­red parts, of a very rationall brain, delighted more in depths than in ſhallows, in the logicall deep and ſerious, than in the lighter, and ſuperficiary parts of learning. I conceive him to have been carryed out by his own Genius to the reading of the deepeſt Scho­laſtick writers, with the purpoſe that Virgil once applyed himſelf to the reading of Ennius, though not with the ſame ſucceſſe. The purpoſe of both probably was to fetch out ê ſtercore gemmam, a jewel out of the dunghill. But this man meeting with learning perfect­ly agreeing with his naturall Genius, became impotent to obtaine his purpoſe; for being delighted with the dunghil, he hath made it his ſphere and element; the depth of rationality which he found in his Authors, hath drawn and captivated him to their moſt curſed opinions: ſo that we find him in ſtead of a Gemm, bringing forth a Cockatrice-egg, which if it be not deſtroyed in the ſhell, will ru­ine himſelf and many others. It is an infirmity that hath made impreſſion in points leſſe momentous, upon ſome perſons of great note in the Church. I ſhall mention one Hierom in ſtead of the reſt. In his works as they are ſet forth by Eraſmus, Tom. 1. there is a Book intituled, Catalogos Scriptorum Eccleſiaſticorum; in which Hierom mentioning Tertullian, and not being able to deny his falling into Montaniſm, he thus at leaſt minceth his fault. Invidia & contumeliis Clericorum Romanae Eccleſiae ad Montani dogma delapſus eſt (ſaith he) i e. through the envy and reproaches which he ſuffered from the Cler­gy of Rome, he declined to the opinion of Montanus. Eraſmus in his Scholia upon theſe words thus writeth, Ʋt favit Hieronimus ingenio Tertulliani, &c. i. e. See how Hierom favoured Tertullians wit, al­moſt excuſing him for falling into the faction of the Montaniſts, lay­ing the fault upon the envy and reproaches of the Roman Prieſts. So farr Eraſmus. He might have further added [ſo farr he delighted in Tertullians wit, that he did not only excuſe him, but alſo] was car­ried by the pleaſing ſtream of his wit and learning, into the very dregs of Montaniſm as deep as Tertullian himſelf. So ſhall wee finde him diſcovering himſelf at the full, in his firſt Book againſt Jovi­nian, as Eraſmus himſelf in his Antidote prefixed thereunto doth hint, but the work it ſelf makes it notoriouſly plain. It contents not that good Monk Father, there to produce as his own, all Ter­tullians arguments, except he alſo delivers them for the moſt part in Tertullians very words, ſo that there were not wanting ſuch as excepted againſt him as a very Montaniſt. I ſpeak not to leſſen the worth of thoſe two ancient Writers, but to manifeſt in theſe two great and ſublimated Wits, when the Genius of one man ſo con­ſpireth with anothers, as to delight abundantly, it is as the Load­ſtone and iron to draw & to follow into falſhood as well as truth, except there be interpoſed much of the ſpirit of grace and meeknes, and ſo high an eſteem of the Word, that the mind explodes all o­ther learning as baſe in compariſon of it. No marvail then if Mr. Baxter having immixt himſelf into whole troops of Schoolmen, Jeſuits, and others of the ſame Scholaſtick train with himſelf, hath been carried away in the crowd captive to their baſeſt errors. Some would marvail rather how there ſhould be found in England any Divines profeſſing antipathy to Rome, applauding the very worſt piece of Romes Heriſies, as ſoon as Mr. Baxter hath breathed upon and bleſſed it. But the caſe is the ſame. Mr. Baxter well knew in what water to angle that he might catch, he perceived that the Do­ctrine of Juſtification for theſe fifty years hath been too little prea­ched in England. That ſince the heat of controverſie betwixt us and the Papiſts about it abated, this Doctrine ſounded in few Pulpits, which before ſounded in all, that the Pia fraus (as they termed it) prevailed every where, a godly deceit to with-hold from the peo­ple the knowledg of the libertie which they have by Chriſt, leſt they ſhould turn it into licentiouſneſſe. That as this pions fraud paſſed from hand to hand among the Miniſters, many of them while they were deceiving, were themſelves deceived, and verily thought it the right art of profitable preaching to hold out the Law, and keep in the Goſpel, to waſh the utter part of the cup and platter, leaving that which is within full of guilt and corruption. Hence it came to paſs that the Law by many was turned to a two-fold uſe, like the ſword of Achilles to Tilephus, to wound firſt, and then to heale, to caſt down and to erect again, to kill and make alive, to damn and then to ſave alſo. Firſt, it was ſo brandiſhed for conviction, that all men by the light and curſe thereof might be compelled to ſee them­ſelves under ſin and condemnation, and then held forth as a ſove­raign remedy againſt damnation, and means of ſalvation; ſuch re­pentances for ſin, ſuch degrees of contrition and reformation pre­ſcribed out of the Law, which being practiced, pardon of ſin and eternall life muſt needs follow. Thus man was made not only his own condemner, but his own Saviour alſo; his evill works in tranſgreſſing the Law purſuing him with vengeance, and his re­turning by repentance to good works in ſtrict obedience to the law, reſtoring him to life & ſalvation. In mean while Chriſt was left in a corner to look upon all, but without interpoſition of his operati­on or Paſſion. Sometimes indeed much might be heard of the riches of Gods Grace, of the efficacy of Chriſts merits to ſave the chief of ſinners, ſo that the people might even ſee the door of heaven open to them; but in concluſion, the Preacher as if he had been deputed to the office of the Cherubims, Gen. 2. ult. to keep the way of the tree of life, with his flaming ſword turning every way, affrighted the poor ſoules from all hope of entring, crying procul hinc, procul ite prophani, no prophane or unclean perſon hath right to meddle with this Grace. No, firſt they muſt have ſuch heart-preparations, purifications, and prejacent qualifications, before they draw neer to partake of mercy; muſt firſt cleanſe and cure themſelves, and then come to Chriſt afterwards; muſt be cloathed with an inherent Righteouſneſſe firſt, and then expect to be cloathed upon with a Righteouſneſſe imputed. Such hath been and ſtill is the Doctrine delivered in many Congregations within this Nation. I neither fain nor aggravate. It is that whereof my ſelf not without griefe have been oft an ear-witneſſe, and that from the mouths of very zealous Miniſters. And I fear the Lord hath a controverſie againſt the Miniſtry, and will more yet obſcure and vilifie many of them for their obſcuring of his grace and his Chriſt. Now when ſo ma­ny of them were by the tide of their own judgments moving be­fore, not a little in Mr. Baxters way, no marvail if they have admit­ted him among themſelves to hoyſe the ſailes and carry them haſti­er and further than they before had purpoſed; ſpecially when all the way along and thorowout his whole Treatiſe he deals with them as Eliſha did with the Syrians, telling them that he is leading them to Dothan, to Hieruſalem, holding their eyes and wits ſuſpen­ded until he hath brought them into the ſtreets of Samaria, of Rome it ſelf, 2 King. 6. 8, &c.

This I thought fit to premiſe of the Author, the next thing pro­miſed was touching the work it ſelf.

Whether we conſider the matter or the artifice of it, I cannot in generall otherwiſe give a livelier character or deſcription thereof, than in the words of Mr. Fox, in his Tractate De Gratiâ gratis Juſti­ficante, againſt Oſorius and others, where he gives his cenſure upon a book of the ſame argument with Mr. Baxters, ſet forth by Oſo­rius, not as this man under the name of a Proteſtant, but ingenu­ouſly profeſſing himſelf a Papiſt. Among other I may as fitly ap­ply theſe paſſages of Mr. Fox to Mr. Baxters work, as he did it to the popiſh Biſhop. Si quiſquam alius preter Oſorium, &c. If any other man ſave Oſorius had publiſhed this Book (ſaith he) but I ſay were it not that ſome unexceptively learned and godly Divines, did tho­row (I know not what miſtake) favour and even patronize this Tractate, Diceremei aperté atque in os, Peſtem publicae Chriſtianorum ſalu­ti, labem Religioni graviorem, majorem D. Paulo, Scripturis & Pro­phetis, injuriam inferre neminem unquam potuiſſe quam his libris oſten­ditur. i. e. I would tell openly, and to his teeth, that no man ever could bring in a more grievous plague to the common ſafety of Chriſtians, or blemiſh to Religion, or greater injury to St. Paul, the Scriptures and Prophets then is held forth in this Book. And p. 4. Ita ſentio, &c. Philoſophum tquidem ſatis Platonicum, & Rheto­rem non male Ciceronianum video; at Theologum vero parum, mihi Crede, Evangelicum, neque ad Cauſam ipſam juſtitiae Chriſtianae perorandam, ſatis exercitatum. i. e. This is my opinion, &c. [in the frame of this work] I ſee thee a Philoſopher enough Platonicall, and a Rheto­rician not much beneath Cicero: but a Divine little ſeaſoned with the Goſpel, and unfurniſhed to treat of that Chriſtian Righteouſ­neſſe [that tends to juſtification.] And pag. 11. while he diſputeth and teacheth us many things of righteouſneſſe and juſtification, there is nothing for us to learne that comes home to the mat­ter, not a mite that may further, but very much that may hinder ſalvation. And pag. 6. he likens him to Celſus & Antipho, mentio­ned by Origen, who when they wrote moſt eagerly againſt the eruth, calld their Books〈…〉〈 in non-Latin alphabet 〉, a word or treatiſe of truth: ſo this man entitles his Book [A diſcourſe of Juſtifying Righteouſneſs.] I had almoſt ſaid Aphoriſms of Juſtification, at ita ut nihil contra Veram Juſti­tiam [vel juſtificationem] dici poſſit hoſtilius. i. e. But ſo that nothing can be ſpoken more hoſtilely or hatefully againſt true righteouſneſſe and juſtification. All this is no leſſe true of, and pat unto Mr. Bax­ters than B. Oſorius his work. But much more pernicious in Mr. Baxters, becauſe he hideth his poyſon under the name and pretence of an Orthodox and Cathedrall Divine, and a great Antagoniſt to Popery.

But of the matter of the work I have delivered my judgment be­fore, and ſhall have occaſion to examine it when I come to the bulk of his Treatiſe. Only at preſent I tranſmit the Reader (that would in a breviary find what the ſubſtance of his Doctrine is) to the ſe­cond part of this Anſwer, Chap. 16, 17, and neer the end of Chap. 22. where he may read in how many particulars he holds the ſame Te­net with the worſt, and tranſcends in many things, the more mo­derate of the Papiſts, yea of the very Jeſuits.

Here I ſhall ſpeak only of the form and artifice of the work, up­on what foundation he hath laid, by what pillars he ſupports his own aſſertions, and with what Engins and Machinations hee op­pugneth the ſacred truth, and judgment of all Orthodox Divines, whom he makes his adverſaries. In all this he followeth his Ma­ſters the Schoolmen and Jeſuites, baulking the Scriptures, and lay­ing maximes of Philoſophy and carnall, or at leaſt humane Rea­ſon as the foundation of his whole building, & walls and pillars it up with ſophiſticall Arguments, Diſtinctions, & quodlibtary ſub­tleties, raiſing every where duſt and vapours to cloud and darken the Sun of truth, that he may have the opportunity with his ignis fatuus, to toll men out of the ſafe and ſure way into the boggs and moſt excrementitios parts of Popery. Indeed ſometimes he quotes Scriptures in heaps, (as they were prepar'd to his hands by Fry­ars and Jeſuits) and lets them out without meaſure or tale, telling us that he will ſtand to and be tryed by the Scriptures: but ſcarce at any time vouchſafing to make known what hee would diduce thence, and how; and many times not affording the labour to name the words, and then hyeth back to his Sanctuary St. Sophi­ſtry again: declaring both at how cheap a rate he valueth the ſacred word, not deigning either to cite the words, or at beſt to tell us what he thinks he hath found in them (when contrariwiſe if he cite any thing out of the heathen Philoſophers, or their followers, the Popiſh Doctors unnamed, he is very buſie to preſſe and improve it to his advantage) and withall, that his meaning is to be tryed by the boon ſonns of the unholy Catholick Church: therefore turns us over to them for our in formation what may be gathered from the Scriptures produced, himſelfe paſſing by it as a thing already done to his hands by them.

Now becauſe the main ſtrength of Mr Baxter and his leaders in fighting againſt the verity of the Goſpel, conſiſteth in this ſubtle and unſcripturall way of diſputation, it ſhall not be impertinent to digreſſe a while in diſcuſſing what force there is in ſophiſticall, (or to uſe milder words) Logicall, Philoſophicall, and Metaphi­ſicall argumentations, to confirm or infirm Evangelical Doctrines. In Natural, Moral, Civil, and Oeconomical queſtions they may be (I acknowledg) very uſefull. Yea Logick in its ſober and mode­rate uſe, applyed as an inſtrument to aſſiſt in the contexture and re­texture of Scriptures to finde out the ſenſe and meaning thereof; and further, as by diſcreet joyning of Goſpel poſitions together, it helpeth to elicite ſure and ſound concluſions, (not at all drawing the queſtion out of its own ſphere the Scriptures, to be judged and concluded by the nicities and quiddities of other beſides Scripture­learning) may be profitably uſed in Evangelicall queſtions. But neither Logick it ſelfe beyond this, nor Philoſophy or the Meta­phyſicks at all, have any force to prove any thing in Goſpel­matters.

I know what to expect for ſuch a diſcourſe upon this ſubject. I ſhall be jeered at to be the Fox in the Fable, that being without a tayl, to leſſen his ſhame in a generall counſell of Foxes, made an Oration, declayming much againſt the diſcommodities which Foxes had by their tails, and labouring to perſwade them all to rid themſelves of ſuch a diſcommodity, that he might make the ſhame common, and then not the whole, but a ſhare of it only would be his. Gal. 6. 14. 1 Cor. 2. 2.

Be it ſo, I neither arrogate nor uſurp to my ſelf the praiſe of hu­mane learning. In reference to ſalvation and juſtification, God for­bid that I ſhould glory in any thing but in the Croſſe of Chriſt, or ſhould de­termine to know any thing ſave Chriſt and him crucified. To plead my righteouſneſs; before God, and againſt Satan, the ſimplicity of the Goſpel plenarily furniſheth and contenteth me; leaving it to Mr. Baxter (if he think it ſafe) with ſophiſticall ſubtleties to diſpute himſelf into heaven.

Nevertheleſſe the poſition ſtands firm even in the fall of the cre­dit of the aſſertor, That ſuch humane learning is of no force to de­cide, judg, and conclude any thing in queſtions meerly Evangeli­call, ſuch as is Juſtification, and all other Goſpel-graces and privi­ledges. This may be with much facility evidenced to as many as have not their eyes blinded by the God of this world as yet, and that by theſe following reaſons.

1. All the Doctrines of the Goſpel are tranſcendent, high, and above the reach of the moſt ſublimated reaſon. Eye hath not ſeen, nor eare heard, neither hath it entred into the heart of man to know them, 1 Cor. 2. 9. The natural man receiveth not, cannot receive the things of the Spirit of God, becauſe they are ſpiritually diſcerned. ibid. Verſ. 14. They are myſteries hid in God from the beginning of the world, from ages and generations, but at laſt made known by the Spirit in the preaching of the Goſpel, not only to the Saints [on earth] but alſo to the Principalities and powers in heavenly places, i. e. to the Mi­niſtring Angels and Spirits before God in heaven, Epheſ. 13. 9, 10. Col. 3. 26, 27. So that at the revelation thereof by Chriſt and his Apoſtles, the very Angels deſired to looke into them, as learners of that ſacred Doctrine which before they had not attained, 1 Pet. 1. 12. But all this humane learning whereof we ſpeak, is naturall, flow­ing originally from naturall and heathen men, who in their either moſt profound or moſt ſublime ſpeculations, could not ſee a ſpan above Nature, no nor to the top of Nature by many fathoms. Therefore is there a totall invalidity in it to diſcern one ray of E­vangelical and ſpiritual things. To produce any thing therefore out of this humane literature to diſcern and judg of Goſpel-do­ctrines; is no leſſe folly than to make a blind man judg of colours, or a deaf man of ſounds, or to ſet a dead man to running of a race. Yea to hold forth any thing hence, to cleer up and evidence ſpiri­tual things, is but to hold a candle, nay a dark Lanthorn to the Sun, for the cleering of its beams that we may ſee it.

If any object, that Spiritual and Evangelical Doctrines are by none brought (as Spiritual and Evangelical) under the Tryall of this humane learning, but as they fall under ſome Topicks of this or that Art or Science, as Es, Subſtantia, Accidens, Actio, Re­latio, &c. and ſo farr only they are diſputed of by and according to the Maximes and Canons of thoſe places.

I anſwer, that even this is to ſubject ſupernatural Doctrines to the judgment and cenſure of Natural Reaſon. It will not be deny­ed that the firſt Founders of theſe Arts and the precepts thereof were meerely Naturall and Morall men, and neither did nor could accommodate their precepts and rules to any other but natu­ral and Moral things; were ſo farr unable to reach them to things ſupenatural, that they left them in many things unperfect as to things natural: ſo that after all the amendments of all their fol­lowers, not a few of their Canons remain diſputable and contro­verted (as to Natural and Moral things) ſtill. Therefore to pro­ſtrate ſpiritual things to the judgment of this Natural learning, is to ſubject the Authority of Chriſt to the Authority of men, the wiſdome of the Spirit to the wiſdome of the Fleſh, and that which is infallible to that which is both fallible and fallacious. Nay all the doctrines and precepts of Philoſophers are to be tryed by the word; but in no wiſe are the dictates of the Spirit, and doctrines of the word of grace to be tryed by the precepts of Men. I forbeare to ſpeak here, that otherwiſe not Chriſt but Ariſtotle muſt in mat­ters of ſalvation be made our Ipſe Dixit: or that none but Schollars can have any ſtable ſetledneſſe of faith, the unlearned in humane li­terature remaining uncapable thereof, becauſe they cannot prove the truth of what they believe as well by the rules of Art, as by the Teſtimony of the word of Chriſt. I only ſay, when Chriſt by his word hath ſaid and determined, here not to ſubject and reſt ſatisfi­ed, but to conſult with fleſh and blood, with the rules of humane Art for my fuller reſolution, is no leſſe indignity to Chriſt, than to ſet mans wiſedom in the Chair, and to proſtrate Chriſt to be his Footſtool.

2. If it have any power and efficacy to this end, it muſt be either from ſome naturall and intrinſicall vertue of its own, or elſe by Gods ordination and infuſion. Not by any naturall vertue of its own, as appeareth by what was laſt ſaid, and by this that none e­ver by ſuch ſecular learning attained one leaſt ſpark of Goſpel-knowledg, nor yet by Gods ordination, and inſpiring ſtrength into it to operate for ſuch an end. For let it be declared in what Scrip­ture God inſtituted or owned it as an in-ſtrument uſefull and effe­ctualized for ſuch a work. And if neither of theſe ways it be pow­erful, or in a capacity either to declare or confirm Goſpel-matters, then hath it no power at all to ſuch a purpoſe.

If any thing be excepted againſt in this Argument, it muſt be the latter disjunctive particle thereof in the Aſſumption which denieth the humane learning before mentioned to be ordained of God, or qualified by him as inſtrumental and effectual to determine any thing in Evangelical and Spiritual Doctrines. But this may be cleered and confirmed by the Reaſons following.

1. Becauſe neither the Lord Chriſt nor any of his Apoſtles or Prophets have made uſe of it to this end. Not his Prophets under the Old Teſtament: For when they ſpke any thing of the Myſtery of Chriſt and his Goſpel that were afterward more fully to be re­vealed, they did it by inſpiration from God, 2 Tim. 3. 16. and the reve­lation of the ſpirit of Chriſt which was in them, 1 Pet. 1. 11. not as ha­ving dipped the ſame, from the broken Ciſterns of humane inventi­ons and learning. And when they will add a confirmation to ſuch Doctrines, the only authority which they produce is divine. Thus ſaith the Lord, The Lord of Hoſts hath ſaid it, the holy, the lofty, the mighty one of Iſroel hath ſpoken it, without any Philoſophical or Me­taphyſical Arguments to prove it. No leſſe is to be ſaid of Chriſt himſelf our own and only Mr. when he deſcended from Heaven to reveal his Goſpel in its fulneſs and glory, affirming his doctrine to be onely and wholly that which his Father taught him, Joh. 8. 28. which he had ſeene with his father, Joh. 8. 38. as he had commandement from his father, Joh. 10. 18. even as the father ſaid unto him, Joh. 12. 50. as he heard from his father, Joh. 15. 15. Lo all from heaven, from the Father; nothing from earth from men, in revealing the Goſ­pel. No nor to the confirmation of it being revealed, ſave his own and his Fathers teſtimonie, Joh. 8. 18. Joh. 5. 31, 37. Let there be but an iota produced of this kind of literature whereof I treat, that our Saviour any where uſed for the confirmation of the Goſ­pel-doctrines which hee delivered. Nay, hee denies all ability and poſſibility, that any man by naturall or acquired parts ſhould ſee or ſhew forth (untill he hath received divine revelation) one ray of Goſpel-light; Therefore when Peter had made but a courſe and confuſed or obſcure confeſſion of Chriſt, he anſwers, Bleſſed be thou Simon Barjonah, for Fleſh and Blood hath not revealed this unto thee, but my Father which is in heaven, Mat. 16. 16, 17. Inſinuating that the ve­ry threſhold of Goſpel-knowledg is tranſcendent and above all the reach of humane Arts, and fleſhly or naturall wiſdome, to find it out for themſelves, or make it out to others. Hence are the uni­verſal concluſions and aſſertions which hee layeth down to this purpoſe. No man can come to me except the Father draw him. It is writ­ten, they ſhall be all taught of God: Every man that hath heard and learned of the Father cometh to me, Joh. 6. 44, 45. No one knoweth the Sonn but the Father; neither knoweth any man the Father but the Sonn, and he to whom the ſonn will reveal him. What he ſpeaketh of knowing the Son and the Father, he meaneth of knowing the minde and will of God touching the Goſpel-way in wch he hath purpoſed to bring ſinners to ſalvation. This is a wiſdome not borrowed of, but hidden from [moſt of] the wiſe and prudent [in ſecular learning] and revea­led to babes, Mat. 11. 25-27. And the Scripture giveth reaſons why there is no power in the wiſdome and learning of men to dive into the Myſtery of the Goſpel, and Evangelical knowledg of God. No man hath ſeene God at any time: The only begotten ſonne which is inJoh. 1. 18. the boſome of the Father hath declared him, Joh. 1. 18. No man hath aſcended to heaven, but he that came down from heaven, even the ſonne of man which is in heaven, Joh. 3. 13. What man knoweth the things of a man, ſave the ſpirit of man which is in him. Even ſo the things of God knoweth no man but the ſpirit of God, 1 Cor. 2. 11. What is here ſpo­ken of the knowledg of God, is to be underſtood as in the former Texts, the knowing of Gods will and myſterious way of bringing many ſons (ere while enemies) to glory. The ſcope of the Argu­mentation in theſe Scriptures runs thus. None but ſuch as have ſeen God, ſeen into him, have been in heaven with him, nay have been in his very heart and boſom, can poſſibly know the mind and purpoſe of God hidden in himſelf touching the juſtification and ſalvation of men. But Chriſt only & the Spirit of Chriſt have been, and are ſtill in heaven, have ſeen God, and are in the boſom of God reading and knowing all the purpoſes of his mind. Therefore none but Chriſt and his Spirit alone know and can reveale this mind of God to us. The Scripture here ſpeaketh of Teachers, none hath been in heaven to come thence as a Teacher into the world of what he hath ſeen in the boſom of God, but the Son and the Spi­rit: And the teaching or revealing of which it ſpeaketh, is meant original teaching and revealing. None can reveal the mind of God but the Son and the Spirit, or they to whom the Son hy his Do­ctrine and Spirit hath firſt revealed it. What weight then can there be in the Teſtimony or learning of the Heathen Philoſophers, or of the Angelical and Seraphical Doctors of the Romiſh Church, who never aſcended the Heavens to look into Gods boſom, and are as void of Chriſt and his Spirit as thoſe Heathens themſelves; that any thing of Goſpel-wiſdome ſhould be grounded upon their autho­rity?

From Chriſt diſcend we to the Apoſtles, and firſt he that choſe them to goe forth into the world to bring forth fruit, Joh. 15. 16. (i. e. by the preaching of the Goſpel to bring home many ſouls to God) to furniſh them with abilities for ſo great end noble a work, promi­ſeth to ſend unto them the Spirit, and to what end but to lead them into all truth, Joh. 16. 13. into the cleer and full knowledg of the my­ſterious truths of the Goſpel, bidding them not to go to Athens to learn from the Philoſophers in their Schools any thing that might further their illumination herein, but to tarry at Hieruſalem untill they were endued with this power from on high, Luk. 24. 49. And if we look to the accompliſhment of the promiſe, Acts 2. 1, &c. we ſhall finde that the Holy Ghoſt diſcending in a glorious manner upon them, wrought on them, if not only, yet principally theſe three ef­fects as abundantly ſufficient to enable them for the Apoſtleſhip and Miniſtry of the New Teſtament, as the Apoſtle terms his Office, 2 Cor. 3. 6.

1. A ſudden and wonderfull irradiation of them with all the depths of Goſpel-knowledg, that without communion with fleſh and blood, they had the ſacred ſecrets of the Goſpel made out in an in­ſtant to them by the revelation of Jeſus Chriſt, as afterwards Paul manifeſteth the Lord Jeſus to have dealt with him in like manner, Gal. 1. 12. 16. And thus they that were but mechanick and illite­rate men, were filled ſuddenly with light and knowledg enough to enlighten the whole world then in darkneſſe.

2. The gift of tongus, by which they were enabled to ſpread a­broad unto all men of all nations, in their ſeverall Languages the wonderfull things of God, i. e. the glorious, and untill then hidden ways of ſalvation, Act. 2. 11.

3. A magnanimous and celeſtiall boldneſs to hold forth, defend and maintain thoſe ſacred and ſaving truths revealed to them in deſpight of all the powers of Earth and Hell banding againſt them, Act. 4. 13.

Here, as there is none that will deny the Apoſtles to have been ſufficiently, yea abundantly gifted for the execution of their fun­ction: ſo I do not ſo much as ſuſpect there will be any found that ſuppoſeth them to have received among the Abundance of their Re­velations any inſpiration of the before-mentioned humane learning as uſefull and needfull to plant the knowledg of the Goſpel in the hearts of men, or to confirm it after it was planted.

And 2ly. with that learning and power ſo received, they went on in the execution of their Miniſtry, ſo far from uſing, as that they purpoſely rejected the uſe of humane reaſon and wiſdome, holding faſt to the word alone as the mind of God therein was revealed to them by the Spirit, for their rule in preaching, and authority in confirming the truth of the Goſpel which they taught. In ſtead of all, attend we to Paul, that laboured more abundandantly then they all. Rom. 15. 19.When he had fully preached the Goſpel from Hieruſalem in the regions round about even to Illyricum; he gives this account of his labors, that he had beleeved nothing, nor witneſſed or taught any thing, ſave what is written in the law of Moſes and the Prophets, Acts 24. 14. & 26. 22. That whatſoever Churches he had planted, were built by him upon the foun­dations of the Apoſtles and Prophets, Jeſus Chriſt himſelfe being the chiefe corner-ſtone, Eph. 2. 20. Nothing here of Ariſtotle and Plato, but of the Prophets and Apoſtles, i. e. the Doctrine which Chriſt had re­vealed to them and by them, laid to ſupport the Churches in the Faith of Chriſt. That he had utterly exploded all humane wiſdom Arts, and inventions, as incompetent with the Goſpel of Chriſt. That whether he laid in the hearts of men the principles and begin­nings of Chriſt, having to deale with ſuch as were but yet in con­verting, or elſe but babes in Chriſt, he totally abſtained from the words of mans wiſdome, from intermingling any of the artificiall diſputes of the Philoſophers, that their faith might not ſtand in the wiſdome of men, but in the power of God: or whether he treated with them that were perfect, i. e. grown to a high ſtature in the knowledg and faith of Chriſt, even when he ſpake wiſedom, delivered doctrines of the greateſt depth and miſteriouſneſs to them, yet was it not the wiſe­dome of this world, i. e. neither was the matter thereof the doctrine of the profound Philoſophers and Diſputers that were held the Princes of the world for wiſdome, but the myſterie of Chriſt. Neither for the con­firmation thereof did he uſe the words which mans wiſedom teacheth, i. e. that way of philoſophicall and dialectical diſputation, where­of the Philoſophers give their precepts, but in the words which the holy Ghoſt teacheth, &c. 1 Cor. 2. 1. 13.

Now if neither Chriſt nor his truly inſpired Miniſters ever uſed, or would uſe this kind of learning in Goſpel-matters, the conclu­ſion will neceſſarily follow that it was never of Gods ordination. For Chriſt was faithfull in his houſe the Church, Heb. 3. 2, 6. and finiſh­ed the worke which his Father had given him to do, Joh. 17. 4. And the like may be truly affirmed and confirmed of the faithfulneſſe of all thoſe truly inſpired Miniſters of Chriſt, according to their mea­ſure, that with Paul they were ſtewards of God, and ſtudied ſo earn­eſtly to be found faithfull, that they knew nothing by themſelves to accuſe themſelves of falſhood or neglect, 1 Cor. 4. 1, 2. 4. That they kept backAct. 20. 20. 26, 27. nothing which was profitable to the people, but declared to them the whole Counſell of God, therefore were pure from the blood of all men: ſo that it muſt follow, that either the uſe of the aforeſaid humane learning in Goſpel-matters is no ordinance of God, and at the beſt unpro­fitable: or elſe that Chriſt and his Apoſtles not uſing it, yea reject­ing the uſe of it, were not faithfull. But all will deny the latter, therefore muſt grant the former.

A ſecond Reaſon to prove it not to be an ordinance of God, &c. I may draw from the ſlighting, abaſing, and invective terms which the Holy Ghoſt in Scripture uſeth againſt it. The wiſedom of the Holy Ghoſt doth in no wiſe ſlight any ordinance of God qualified and bleſſed by him to Goſpel-ends. But the uſe of thoſe humane pieces of learning whereof I am ſpeaking is much ſlighted and aba­ed by the H: G: as impotent and unuſefull to Goſpel-work and ends, Ergo, &c. That the H: G: doth thus ſlight it in Scripture, to omit what the Lord Chriſt ſpeaks againſt the traditionary learning of the Jewiſh Rabbies, Mat. 15. 1. - 9. & 23. 13, &c. & 11. 25, 26. Joh. 9. 29-41. I ſhall mention only how contemptuouſly the H: G: by the Apoſtles pointing directly to this Gentilizing learning, ſpeaks of it. They became vain in their imaginations (ſaith he) and theirRom. 1. 21-23. fooliſh heart was darkened; Profeſſing themſelves wiſe, they became fools, and changed the glory of God into a corruptible image, &c. What more to the abaſing of their learning? he calls it at the beſt, the very froth of light fancies and imaginations, the darkneſſe of fooliſh hearts, a profeſſion of ſuch wiſedom as made them groſſe fools; that as it a­cted about religion and the way to happineſſe, it made both it and them a very abhomination to the Lord.

Again, The preaching of the Croſſe is to them that periſh, fooliſhneſſe. As it is written, I will deſtroy the wiſedom of the wiſe, & bring to nothing the underſtanding of the prudent. Where is the wiſe? where is the Scribe? where is the diſputer of this world? hath not God made fooliſh the wiſedom of this world? For after that in the wiſedom of God, the world by wiſe­dom knew not God, it pleaſed God by the fooliſhneſſe of preaching to ſave them that believe, &c. 1 Cor. 1. 18-21, &c.

How differing is the ſpirit of our Sophiſters from the Spirit which wrought in the Apoſtle? He pronounceth this Sophiſticall learning, to be ſo far from being a furtherance to the only true which is the Goſpel-way of ſalvation, as that it is an enemie to it, rejects it as fooliſhneſſe.

2. Them that follow it as their rule and authority what to be­lieve and do, that they may be ſaved, to be in a periſhing conditi­on, in the ready way to damnation. They that periſh account the ſimplicity of the Goſpel without the fulture, or rather tainture of their Arts, fooliſhneſſe.

3. He affirms God to be an enemy to it, to deteſt any patronage from it to his myſterious Doctrine of the Goſpel. He hath left it upon record to curb wanton wits, that he will deſtroy the wiſe­dome, &c.

4. That according to his threat, he hath executed, and will ſtill fulfill, therefore challengeth the Sophiſters to give anſwer from their own experience at laſt, whether God hath not, doth not al­way ſo curſe this wiſedom of theirs, that it turns to ruine and foo­liſhneſſe? Where is the Scribe? where the Diſputer? &c. Hath not God? &c.

5. That it is a knowledg by which men know not God, which while they purſue, they loſe utterly the ſaving knowledg of God.

6. That in contempt of this ſecular learning, God will by the ſimplicity and fooliſhneſſe of Goſpel-preaching ſave them that be­lieve, leaving the Diſputers to reaſon themſelves into Hell. It pleaſed God, &c.

Unto this I ſhal add but two Teſtimonies more; the one, when the Apoſtle hath to do with a company of Chriſtians dwelling among the Philoſophers, in great jealouſie & fear of them, he cryes out, Be­ware ye be not ſpoiled with Philoſophy, Col 2. 7. & vain decit. He ſpeaks of no poſſibility of any good that there ſhould accrew unto them by the help of Philoſophy, but of great danger to be ſpoyled and corrupted by it; and when is there ſuch hazard of being corrupted by it? he anſwers, when men intermingle this learning, which is but of humane invention and tradition, after the Rudiments of the world, after and not above carnall and worldly Reaſon, with the Scripture, in meaſuring out to themſelves the ſaving Goſpel, and take not it up after Chriſt ſimply and unmixedly as Chriſt hath taught it, and put the impreſſe of his authority upon it, Coloſſ. 2. 8. The other that for prevention of corruption by this ſecular learn­ing, the Converts of Epheſus, while the Apoſtle was yet reſident a­mong them, and conſequently conſenting with them, burnt their bookes of curious Arts, which though ſome will have to be under­ſtood of conjuring books, yet I cannot aſſent to them, becauſe this curſed rather then curious Art, was proper and almoſt peculiar to the more Eaſtern people, Jewes, Samaritans, Aegyptians, and Babyloni­ans; the Greeks very little or not at all ſtudying it, but placing all their wiſdom in the Arts whereof I have been hitherto diſcourſing, and theſe were Greeks that burnt the bookes of thoſe curious Arts which they ſtudied, Act. 19. 19. If then any conclude that the H: Ghoſt at any time doth ſo much abaſe and deface an Ordinance of God; Let him alſo conclude this kind of learning and diſputati­on to be ordained of God for the confirming and promoting of the Goſpel.

A third Reaſon to prove that God hath not ordained this So­phiſticall or Philoſophicall learning to be inſtrumentall for the promoting of the Goſpel, may be drawn from experience it ſelf. That wch we never find to be bleſſed, but ſtill blaſted of God to the hurt both of the Churches that have been admirers and followers of Sophiſticall teachers of the Goſpel, and of ſuch teachers alſo, cannot be the Ordinance of God; for he alway accompanieth and breaths his bleſſing in greater or leſſer degrees upon the due execu­tion of his own Ordinances. But God hath never bleſſed, but ſtill ſo blaſted and brought to nought & naught, &c. the uſe of this philoſophicall and philoſophaſtrous learning. Ergo, It is not of Gods ordination, I mean to be intermingled with ſpirituall, and Evangelicall Doctrines. For hence alone we baniſh it, not denying it to be uſefull in naturall and morall things, as I have before granted.

That it hath been ſo blaſted as intermingled with Goſpel-do­ctrines, experience it ſelf evidenceth. Trace we down from the ve­ry primitive age of the Goſpel Church untill our times, Gods ope­rations, in the Goſpels and Churches wxings and wainings, and we ſhall find his bleſſing to have been upon the pure preaching of the Goſpel; his curſe upon the mixings and medleys of mns wiſe­dom with it. Begin we with the Apoſtles times, when thee went forth acting only by the authority of Chriſts miſſion, and according to the rule of his Commiſſion, the very Devills became ſubject to them, and Satan fell as lightning before them, at the ſound of the Goſpel which they had charge to preach alone, and ground upon the au­thority of the Scripture alone, while this charge was faithfully put in execution, whole Nations either after the other, yea the whole world [almoſt] came to be diſcipled to Chriſt. God work­ing mightily with them by many ſignes and wonders to make their Miniſtry ſuccesfull. But when anon there entred into the Churches rightly grounded and ſtabliſhed, falſe Apoſtles of the Jewes that preached a legall and naturall righteouſneſſe that reaſon and naturall con­conſcience could ſuggeſt (if the Law of Moſes had been ſilent) as neceſſary to be joyned with the Goſpel-righteouſneſſe of Faith to Juſtification: And on the other ſide there aroſe out of the Church­es of the Gentiles ſome of themſelves that ſpake perverſe things ſeeking to introduce the like naturall righteouſneſſe out of the Ethicks of the Philoſophers, and to maintain their Doctrines, mainly if not wholly by Ariſtotles dialectick ſubtleties: And both theſe began to be favoured by wanton wits within the Churches: Now the Lord turned his hinder parts to them on whom erewhile the light of his countenance ſhined, the glory of the Goſpel became more and more clouded, the Churches rended and torn in pieces, abounding more with Apoſtates than with Chriſtians indeed, as may be large­ly manifeſted from the New Teſtament if there were need.

From the Apoſtles time diſcend we to the next ages or age after the Apoſtles, and I find not among the Writers of note any one much ſtudious of Philoſophy (much leſſe ſpoyled with it) Cle­mens Alexandrinus only excepted, and he enough moderate in the uſe of it. But ſhortly after him ſprung up Origen, a great and co­pious Writer: in his youth beyond his age hopefull, but in his ma­turity carryed with full ſails to the ſtudy of ſecular Arts, and with ſuch ſucceſſe, that Hierom in his Catalogue of Eccleſiaſticall Writers renders him in ſuch learning unmatchable by any going before, or following him; as one thorowly ſeen in all the differing opinions of all the ſeverall ſects of Philoſophers, a notable Logician and Diſputer, and fully read in all the Liberall Arts, and as remarka­ble for the practical part as the Theory of all.

Now from a man ſo accompliſht in ſo many perfections (as ſome term them) would poſſibly be expected a greater ſucceſſe of his preaching and writing than ever Paul attained, becauſe ſo much more learned then Paul: But the caſe proved contrary. Out of his brain thus filled, iſſued errors and hereſies as thick as hail-ſtones from the Clouds. Nothing of Scripture, Law or Goſpel could eſ­cape his depravation, and a Religion he ſet forth, like Mahomets Alcaron, a meer galleymaufry of Heterogeneous fancies, ſome Jew­iſh, ſome Heatheniſh, and ſome in ſhew at leaſt Chriſtian, compounded and confounded one with the other, ſo that there could not be a fouler abhomination then ſuch a Religion. Why? becauſe he had attained ſo much ſecular learning? not ſo, but becauſe he wrought with untempered morter, mixing Philoſophy and Chriſtianity to­gether, which cloſe as ſweetly as light and darkneſſe. Hence was it that all the Churches at length exploded him for an Heretick, and his writings as Pſeudo-Chriſtian; and Hierom ſo wounded his re­putation among the learned and godly, for writing ſomewhat in the praiſe of him, that with all his palliating and recanting, hee could not fully repayr it to his dying day. Yea the ſtinch of him hath offended all the godly Divines of our Reformed Churches, notwithſtanding his antiquity, that they reject him. From the pen of one Beza, we may know the mind of the reſt, who calls him hominem impuram ſometimes, and ſometimes hominum impuriſſimum, an impure or a prophane man, yea the prophaneſt of men, for pro­phaning Scriptures, Goſpel, Religion, and all other ſacred things that he medled with.

At no long diſtance after Origen lived Tertullian, who finding the Church by the evill Artifice of Origen, and other Philoſophicall Chriſtians like him, over ſpread with hereſies, applies himſelfe to ſeek the cure thereof. And a principall means he preſcribeth here­unto, is a faſt adhering to the doctrine of Chriſt, all other authori­ty in divine things being rejected. It is not lawfull for us (ſaith he) to bring in any thing [of faith or worſhip] out of our own will or judgment, nor to admit any thing what another hath introduced of his will and judg­ment. Apoſtolos Domini habemus auctores, qui nec ipſe quicquam ex ſuoTertul. l. de preſcript. ad­verſ. Hae­reticos. Arbitrio quod inducerunt, elegerunt, ſed acceptam a Chriſto diſciplinam fide­liter nationibus adſignaverunt, i. e. We have the Apoſtles of the Lord herein our authors or patterns, who neither made choiſe of any thing from their owne invention, to impoſe [upon Chriſtians] but faithfully delivered to the Nations the diſcipline which they had received from Chriſt. So that if an Angel from heaven ſhall preach any other doctrine let him be accurſed. And having menti­oned ſome doctrines not of Chriſts preſcribing, pronounceth of all ſuch, Hae ſunt doctrinae hominum & Daemoniorum prurientibus auribus natae, de ingenio ſapientiae ſaeculi, &c. i. e. Theſe are Doctrines of men and Devills ſprung forth from itching ears, of the nature of the wiſdome of the world, which the Lord calling fooliſhneſſe, hath choſen the fooliſh things of the world even to the confuſion of Phi­loſophy it ſelf. Ea eſt n. Materia ſapientiae ſaecularis, &c. For this [Philoſophy] is the matter of worldly wiſdome: a raſh interpreter of the na­ture and diſpenſations of God, from it Hereſies are ſuborned. And having particularizd what ſeverall hereſies have been foyſted into the Church from the ſeverall ſects of Philoſophers, and what from all conjoyned, and inveighed againſt Ariſtotles Logick as an enemie to Chriſtian Religion, he thus breaks forth. Quid ergo Athenis & Hie­roſolymis? Quid Academiae & Eccleſiae? Quid haereticis & Chriſtianis? Noſtra inſtitutio de particu Solomonis eſt, &c. Viderint qui Stoicum & pla­tonicum, & Dialecticum Chriſtianiſmum protulerunt, &c. i. e. what then hath Athens to do with Jeruſalem? the Academy with the Church? Hereticks with Chriſtians? Our Inſtitution [in Religion] is out of the porch of Solomon, &c. Let them look to it that have hatched out a Stoicall, Platonicall, and Logicall Chriſtianity to us. We have no need of curioſity after Chriſt, nor of inquiſitiveneſſe after the Goſ­pel. When we believe [viz. Chriſt and his Goſpel] wee deſire nothing beyond believing. For this we believe firſt, that there is not [viz. in Phi­loſophy or other Arts] any thing that we ought to believe [unto ſal­vation] beyond [the Goſpel of Chriſt.] And a little after, he that is not ſatified with the Scripture, but ſeekes further authority from reaſon and Philoſophy, his curious inquiſitiveneſſe argues him either not to believe, or elſe to be vain-glorious in ſeeking after the praiſe of worldly wiſdom, there­fore annexeth this counſell, Cedat curioſitas fidei, cedat gloria ſaluti, i. e. let curioſity give place to faith, and vain-glory ſtoop to ſalva­tion. So much and much more not unworthy the reading, hath Tertullian in this Book. And none will eaſily affirm that Tertullian condemns that learning which himſelfe wanted, to hide his own nakedneſs. All his polemicall works or controverſall writings declare the contrary, ſpecially his book againſt Hermogenes, where having to deale with one that little regarded the Scriptures, ſets upon him in his own fortreſſe, and aſſails him with his own wea­pons, and philoſophically convinceth the Philoſophaſter, and dia­lectically the Sophiſter, in his own arts and element, confuting and confounding him.

But ſome may object, that ſeeing he holds the uſe of theſe arts unneceſſary and hurtfull to Chriſtian Religion, why doth himſelf make uſe of them? Himſelf both moves and anſwers the queſtion elſe-where, and thus puts the queſtion, Whether ohere be not ſomeTertul. de Anima. lib. truths to be found in philoſophy? and 2ly. whether a Chriſtian may not in ſome caſe make uſe of it in his diſputations?

His anſwer is ſomewhat large, the ſumm and brief of it runs in this tenor: That it is not to be denyed but there are ſome truths delivered by Philoſophers in the more common and open things of Divinity, i. e. (as I granted before) in naturall and morall things, and thoſe we are to take up, not for the authority of the Phyloſo­phers, who by the groping light of Nature have by a kind of blind happineſſe found out and delivered the ſame: but for the authori­ty of God, who by his undeceiving word hath manefeſted it to us, and further that in our diſputes with ſuch to whom the preſcripts of philoſophy are more authoritative and authentick than the ora­cles of the word, when it may be done without prejudice to the word, we may retort upon the adverſarie his own arguments, and ſtop his mouth with teſtimonies of Philoſophers, which to him are moſt authentick. Nevertheleſs it is the ſafeſt and moſt pious way when wee treat with Hereticks that profeſſe Chriſtians, to hold them cloſe to the Scriptures. Aufer Haereticis quae cum EthnicisTertul. lib. de Reſur. carnis. ſapiunt, ſaith he, ut de ſolis ſcripturis queſtiones ſuas ſiſtant, & ſtare non potuerint, i. e. Take from the Heretieks thoſe arguments which they draw from heathen learning, that they may ſtate their queſtions from the Scriptures alone, and they will not be able to ſtand.

With Tertullian conſented the judgment of the ſound and ortho­dox Fathers which lived after him, during the firſt ſix hundred years in the Chriſtian Church, and my purpoſe was to demon­ſtrate it from the very words of ſuch of them as I have read; but finding the Preface ſwelling above its meaſure already, and the little or no uſe which they make of theſe pieces of learning, in their works, enough declaring their judgments, that they held the ſame uſeleſs and ſuperflouat leaſt: in all their writings holding thewſelves faſt to the word, not medling with prophane arts to help or back the Goſpel of Chriſt, ſaving when they were neceſſita­ted to diſabuſe the people, in diſcovering the fallacies of the Mani­chees, Arrians, and other ſophiſtical Hereticks: I think it more per­tinent to eaſe my ſelf of this burthen. By the way<