Baxter - Houston-Packer Collection BX5200 .B352 1835 v1

LIFE OF RICHARD BAXTER. 33 before any important business had been finished, before even the vote for a supply had been passed into a law. There was an interval of two years before the assembling of another parliament. In this interval the king made some experi- ment of the new counsels which he had threatened. Various ir- regular and arbitrary measures were employed to provide a reve- nue. These were of course unpopular, and were pursued with characteristic inefficiency, till, by the event of a battle on the con- tinent, a new emergency arose in the king's. affairs. Then, the want of money in the treasury having become more pressing, and the insufficiency of halfway measures more glaring than ever, an act of council was passed, and duly promulgated, demanding of each subject just what he would have paid had the proposed sup- ply been granted by the parliament. The people, however, were informed, for their satisfaction, that the sums exacted were to be called loans, and not taxes. To enforce the payment ofthis reve- nue, soldiers were quartered upon the refractory; and he who de- clinea lending his money to the king, found that refusal was likely to cost more than submission. Those who went so far as to per- suade or encourage others to refuse, were thrown into prison. Appeal was made to the law against such invasion of personal lib- erty; but the courts of justice, newly organized by the king to meet the emergency, refused to sustain the. appeal. At the same time, that dsurpation.might not want the sanctions ofreligion, the court clergy were employed to aid these despotic proceedings, by preaching up the duty of passive obedience, and the divine right of kings to govern without check or responsibility. Among these, one Dr. Sibthorp became distinguished by circum- stances. Having preached, on some public occasion, a sermon full of the court doctrine, he dedicated it to the king, and carried it to archbishop . Abbot to be licensed for the press. The good old primate, whowas half a Puritan, and altogether a Protestant, refused to sanction such doctrine, and was therefore suspended from the functions of his office, and compelled to -retire in disgrace to a country residence. Another of these preachers, Dr. Manwaring, was distinguished still more, not only by the boldness with which he carried out his principles, but by the favor with which he was regarded by the court. In two sermons preached before the king, and published by the king's command, he taught, among other mat- ters, as follows " The king is not bound to observe the laws of the realm concerning the subject's rights and liberties, but his royal will and pleasure, in imposing taxeswithout consent of parliament, doth oblige the subject's conscience on pain of damnation." These were the doctrines which the dominant party in the church took pains to propagate in that day of usurpation and national danger.