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I¢6

The

L

I E

E

of

the

L

I

B.

I.

for Subdivifons,

than the

few fober Perfons among them. could

do for unity and

Peace

;

too much miftaking the Terms of Church Communion, and

the

difference

between the Regenerate

( invifible

)

and

the Congregate

(

or vitible)

Church.

The

Anabaptifts

Party confuted

of

fume

(

but fewer

)

fober

,

peaceable

Perfons,

and orthodox in other Points;

but withal

,

of

abundance

of

young

tranf

rted

Zealots, and

a medley

of

Opinionifts, who

all

hafted dire

&1

to

Entbsrgafm

and

Subdivifew,

and

by the

Temptation of Profperity

and Succefs in Arms, and the

Policy

of

fome

Commanders, were

led

into

Rebellions, and

hot

Endeavours againft

the Miniftry, and other

fcandalous Crimes

;and

brought forth

'the horrid

Sects

of

Ranters,

Seekers,

and

Quakers

in the

Land.

§

z

;.

But

the greaten Advantage

which

I found

for

Concord

and Pacification,

was

among

a

great

number

of

Minifters and People who had addi&ed

themfelvés

to

no

Se&

or Party

at

all

;

though the Vulgar

called

them by the Name

of

Presby-

terians: And the

truth

is,

as'far

as

I

could difcover, this

was

the Cafe

of

the great-

en

number of the godly Minifters and People throughout

England.

For though

Presbytery

generally took

in

Scotland,

yet it

was

but

a

ftranger here

:

And it found

fome Minifters

that

lived

in conformity

to

the

Bithops ,

Liturgies and Ceremonies

(

however they wilht for Reformation

)

;

and

the molt

(

that quickly after were

ordained

)

were butyoung Students

in

the Univerfties, at the time

of the

change

of Church

Government, and had neverwell nudied

-the

Point on either

fide: And

though molt

of

the Minifters

(

then ) in

England law

nothing

in

the Presbyterian

way

of

praíïiee,

which they

could

not

cheerfully concur

in,

yet it

was

but

few

that

had

refolved

on their

Principles

:

And when

I

came

to try

it,I

found

that mov

( that

ever

I

could meet

with)

were againft the

Ito

Divinum

of

Lay

Elders,

and

for the moderate Primitive Epifcopacy, and

for

a

narrow Congregational

or

Pa-

rochial Extent

of

ordinary Churches, and

for an accommodation

of

all

Parties,

in order

toConcord,

as

well

as

my

felf.

I

am fure

as

foon

as

I

propofed it

to them,

I

found molt inclined

to this

way,

and therefore

I

fuppofe

it

was

their Judgment

before: Yea, multitudes whom I had no converfe with,

I

underftood to be of-this

mind

; fo

that

this

moderate Number,

(I

am loth

to

call

them

a Party

,

becaufe

they

were for Catholicifm againft Parties),

being no

way pre-

engaged

,

made

the

Work

of

Concord

much more hopeful

than

elfe

it

would have been

, or than

I

thought it to be when I

firft

attempted

it.

§24.

Things

being in this Cafe,

I

Rood

vill

fonte years,

as

a

looker

on, and

contented my

felf to

with

and

pray

for Peace,

and

only drop

now

and

then aword

for

it

in my practical

Writings

;

which hath

fine

been none

of

my fmallev

troubles.

The

Reafons were,

r.

Becaufe

I

was

taken up in

Pradicals,

and in

fuch Controverfies

as

tended to Doctrinal

Agreement.

2. Becaufe

I

looked when

fume

abler and

more

eminentDivinesattempted it.

;.

But

the chief

Reafon was,

Defpair:

I

was

fo

conklous

of

mymeannefs and

in

confiderablenefs

in the Church,

that

I verily thought,

but very few will regard

what

I faid.

But

when I once at-

tempted it,

God

convinced me

of,

this

Errour,

and

(hewed

me how little Inftru-

ments

lignifie,

when

he will work

:

and

that

his

Mininers

and People

were more

humble to

hear

the

meaneR

of

their Brethren, than

I

before believed.

Atlaft the

workings

of

my earneft Defire, and the apprehenfwn

of

my

Duty, to do my

heft,

and leave

the

Succefs

toGod, engaged me

as

followeth.

§

zy.

I

firft began

in

Conference and Writing to Reverend Mr.

Anthony Burgeß,

and

fome others,

to put the

main

Que!tion, Whether

all

Church Government

be

not,

as

Carriers

holdeth,

only

PerfwaJive,

not

by private, but

.publick

or

authorized

Do

&oral Perfwafion,

and

-fo

can work on none but theConfcientious

or

Affenters?

And whether the

ufurparion

of

a

flridlÿ

Legiflative and

Judicial Power

(fave

only

to

judge what

eve

are to execute), or

a

power

of

binding Diffenters

,

even

Clave

errante

,

efpécially binding Magiftrates to

execute

by

Corporal Penalties and

Mulls,

and

other

Punifhments

,

Eo nomine

,

becaufe

by Excommunication the

Church

hath punished them,

I

fly,

whether

this be

not

a

robbing the Magivrate

of

his

Power, and making the Exercife of

ehe

Keys, to

be

too

like a Coercive

Secular

Judgment,

and

fo

the Ground

of

all

the Quarrels in the Church

?

For

I

faw plainly

that

the Pàpifls, and thofe Prelates and Presbyterians'

who

are for fuch

an

unexamined Judicial

Power,

do but ftrive for

that which

belongeth to none

of

them

all.

Upon the

railing

of

thefe doubts

I

was

fufpeeted to

be

an Erailtan, and

had no

other

An-fiver,

or Satisfaction

:

But

the

Rudy

of

the Point

fomewhat cleared

my own

Judgment.

I

26.