Barrow - BX1805 .B3 1852

60 PROOF FROM ACTS OF THE APOSTLES. the brethren of the Gentiles,"I Acts xv. 13-29. Now, in all tais action, in this leading precedent for the management of things in ecclesiastical synods and consistories, where can the sharpest sight descry any mark of distinction or pre- eminence which St Peter had in respect to the otherapostles? Did St Peter there anywise behave himself like his pretended successors upon such occasions? What authority did he claim or use before that assembly, or in it, or after it? Did he summon or convocate it? No; they met upon common agreement. Did he preside there? No; but rather St James, " to whom," says St Chrysostom, " as bishop of Jerusalem, the govern- ment was committed."' Did he offer to curb or check anyman, or to restrain him from his libertyof discourse there? No; "therewas much disputation," every man frankly speaking his sense. Did he more than use his freedom of speech becoming an apostle, in argu- ing the case and passing his vote? No; for in so exact a relation nothingmore appears. Did he form the definitions, or pronounce the decree resulting? No; St James rather did that; for, as an ancient author says, " Peter made an oration, but St James enacted the law."' Was, beside his suffragein the debate, any singular approba- tion required from him, or did he by any bull confirm the decree? No such matter; these were devices of ambition, creeping on and growing up to the pitch where theynow are. In short, does any thing correspondent to papal pretences appear assumed bySt Peter, or deferred to him? If St Peter was such a man as they make him, howwanting then was he to himself! how did he neglect the right and dignity of his office, in not takingmore upon him upon so illus- trious an occasion, the greatest he ever met with! How defec- tive, also, were the apostolical college, and the whole church of Jerusalem, in point of duty and decency, yielding no more deference to their sovereign, the vicar of their Lord! Whatever account may be framedof these defailances [deficiencies], the truth is, that St Peter then knew his own place and duty better thanmen know them now; and the rest as well understood how it became them to demean themselves. St Chrysostom's reflections on those passages are very good : that, indeed, then "therewasno fastuousness [haughtiness] in the church," and "the souls of those primitive Christians were clear of vanity;"4 the which dispositions did afterward spring up and grow a Tár, i'LZ6 T, ç, &c. Acts ay. 22. Tá Sówpaa7a 7á xaxprpciva L7Ó 7aV &aree.raar xai vmv vrpeaßuTipay. Ibid, xvi. 4. Kpivarraç f7ufiÇ iáan -síT. apaay. Ibid, xxi. 25. S leizeoßoÇ ó cä0.04 70ú Kupiou ,Av izxxna(avTóTa iaraazóarauav iv dpx>i Tñv iv'Iapaoolúpeoeç, xai Tm "v i qoaccian, VraaTavaár7ar vrposeaTOizaa vráv701v. Chrys., tom. y. Or. 59. 'Exüvoç yáp nr Tnv cipx6 iwxaxaapeap irac ... it Svvaan í rir. Chry3. in loc. "For he had the govern- ment committed to him, .... he was empowered." 3 nirpaç SnpanwopG, ea), 'IZxaßaÇ vapaokraï.rlesyeh., apud Phot. Cod 275. 4 Ohwg oiSaiç 740f ryr it Tn ixxX5çtç ei7aç zahopá Sí eç 'Tr airy , 1,6x4:Chryes, tiltid