Brooks - BX9338 .B7 1813 v2

LIVES OF THE PURITANS. chambers, and examine their hearts before the Lord, and to act according as the case required. 7. " I said, that if Peter'had possessed such authority As ,the papists ascribe to him, he might have commanded these elders to do that, which, as a fellow-elder, he exhorts them. But he was so far from thinking himself the chief of the 'apostles, that he accounts himself, a fellow-elder with, the ordinary elders of other congregations. Yet the popish hierarchy accounts otherwise, both of his superiority over the rest of the apostles, and of themselves as bishops of bishops : but we are to like a godly equality. 8. " I shewed, that as it was the duty of all christians, so also of all theministers of God's Word, to exhort and stir up one another. And that this practice of the apostle con- . demned those, who are so far from exhorting others to feed the flock, that they hinder those who would feed them.74, His answers, however, gave not the least satisfaction. After repeated examination, and remaining a long time in prison, he was enjoined, October 19, 1589, to make the following recantation :-" Whereas, January 6th, last past, " I taught that our uniformity and prescribed order by teaching and ruling elders, by the word of God, is " necessary for the teaching and ecclesiastical government " of the church of God, and is the commandment of the " Lord, and to be kept until the appearing of our Lord " Jesus Christ : and seeing God, as the apostle saith, hath " set them to be elders in the church, who bath authority " to set them out or others in ? I therefore being given to " understand, that the said speeches s mine were so " construed by some, as though I had thereby greatly " derogated from her majesty's authority in causes eeclesi- " astical, do now more plainly express my meaning, that I " do notthink, that there is set down by the word of God, " any stinted and precise form of external government of " the church, which must of necessity:be observed in all " times ,and places without exception : but ampersuaded, " that, for the bettergovernment of particular congregations, ," her.majesty may establish such .orders, as; =by her, godly " wisdom, with the advice of her godly and learned prelates, she Shall find most expedient for the state of her country, " according to her majesty's pre-eminence in the church " established by the laws of the :realm, and expressed in Strype's Annals, vol. iii. Appep. P. 67-269,