Baxter - BX5202 B29 1689

C32) lawful perfons and a&s of Government, not owning their fin -our felves, anddoing no evil at their command. But there are the things which we are not fatisfied in. I. Obedience hath efì'ential Relation to the Laws and Man- dates of thofe that we obey : And the Canons of England'are the Laws by which they openly profefs toRule the Church : And therefore they call it the Oath of Canonical Obedience, that is, of obeying the Church Government according to the Canons ; And when we know the Canons before-hand, we know what Government and Obedience is meant. And we [wear fraudulently if we take not the Oath in the fence of the Impofers: And they commonly tell us, that this is the meaning of [Due Obedience], and if Godly Admonitions, or [in licitis fí^' honeflis] be put in, that doth but- fuppofe that Obedience ac- cording to the Canons is Godly and licitum c honefum, and not that we are left to choofe which Canons we will obey. All Bithops I doubt not will ftand to this Expofition of the fence. Now there are abundance of things in the Canons which we think -to be greater fins than we think meet to call them. II. Weknow tl1at the Rule of the Bifhops is by Chancellors Courts and other filch, where Lay-men exercife the Church Keys , by Decretive Excommunications and Abfolutions : which wife men think to be facrilegious llfurpation, and a Prophanation of a dreadful part of Chtifts Government : And Lawyers and Civilians tell us, that the word [Ordinary] fgnifieth the appointed Ordinary ,judge of the Court, and fo that we fwear or Covenant to obey Lay Civilians ufing the Keys. And [other chief Mini(lers] can meanno lefs than all the Archdeacons, Officials, Commiffaries, Surrogates, &c. whom we covenant to obey ; not in civil things or the circa Sacra belonging to Magiftrates, which we refufe not, but in the exercife of the Church Keyes. III. They that think they have fully proved that Diocefans Ruling many hundred Churches without any Bifhops under them; are an Office in Specie contrary to Gods 'Word, and the practice ofthe primitive Church, and that it corrupteth or.excludeth true Church Difcipline, do think it a fin to con- form.