Abernathy - Houston-Packer Collection BX9178.A33 S4 1748 v.4

Of Chrßian Liberty. x25 tian f much as for an hour ; fo far was he S E It My from fubmitting indifferent things to the au- V. thoritative decifions of men. As to the holy kifs, or the kifs of charity, and the order of deaconeffes, there feem to have been fuch cufroms amongff the primitive chriflians, but no decrees either enjoining or abolifhing them, of the apoífles them - felves, or of any other authority in their time, whatever may be found in what are called the apoftolical constitutions, and other ecclefiaftical canons of later ages ; and for the paffages in the writings of St. Paul which refer to thefe ufages, i Cor. xvi. 2o. and z Tim. v. they do not mean to lay any ftrefs on the being or continuance of them in the church, but, which was much more worthy of him, and agreeable to his fpirit, to thew the religious temper of mind and manner of behaviour, which ought to ac- company the molt indifferent adions in a chriftian's life : Thus his directions to falute one another with a holy kifs, or a kifs of charity, relate principally, not to the external aft, but the purity and charity of the heart in doing it ; and the rules concerning the charafter and behaviour of aged women who were employed in miniftering to the poor, and fupported at the public expence of the church,