Fox - BR1600 .F6 1684 v1

The Vtility of the Story. hundred Alexander.t, Hedors,Scifio's, and War· like 1Hlies. And though the World judgeth p;e. pofrerouOy of things, yet with God,· the true Judge, certes fuch a~e to be re'puted in deed, not that kill one another with a Weapon, but they which being rather ktlled in Gods Caufc do retainan invincible Con(bncy againfi: the Threats of Tyrams, and Violence of Tormentors. Such as thefeare indeed the true Conquerors of the World, by who~ we learn tntc ~aohood, fo many as fight under Chriff, :10d not uncle~ the World. With tlus valiamncfs dtd that moft mild ~~~;ud~~~~~::~:~sL~~~;~~;~~aT ~~~;i~!t~~~~ ~Zo~:i~gtfa~~o~~)5~hi~~;Z;;~ fo1;:;:~:~~:1~ J6,,3; litudeofhis flre"gth; For(ooth t~e high Son ofthe high God, once conquered ofthe World, and yet cooq~ering the World the fame manner he was conquered. The hke daoce did all hts other Martyrs follow, to whom the ancient Antiquity of the Church did attribute fo much honour, as never King or Emperor could purchafe in this World • ::~~ 3r1i1o~h;ihe1 r7~~~·e ~~~\~~·h~g;a;~~:ir!f~~~~~~ ~~~l{~~~;~iti~1n1,h~~rf~J~~n~~;~!~o!~ but alfo the Rehqucs of thofe goods Martyrs were recetved and kept amongn the anctrnt Chrifl:i. , arn. ~c have alfo fo~ witne(s the Jearn~d Hym~s an~ Songs of Pnld~,tin$ and N>~zianzm, wherewnh Pittdar!H dtd never fo much fer out hts Tnumphs ofOlj,,ptaand Nmu:~. J need not here rehearfc thi l!arned Orations of Eloquent C;prian, a:JfoDome, Amhrojt, and 1crome, who never fbewed tbetr Eloquence more, than when they fcllmro the Commend;Hions of tb~; godly Martyrs. Whereby it is manifefl:, what dlimation in times pan w:as att rjbured to Martyrf; with what G ratulation, ltejoyce, Mirth, and common JOy the Afllill:ions of thofe godly, dying in Chrifis Qgarrel, were fometime received and folemnized :. and that not without good re:~fonabl e caufe. For the Church did well confider how much fl1e was beholding to their benefl ts, by whofe death fbc u.nderftbod her Treafures to increafc. ~ow then if Martyrs are to be compared with Martyrs, I fee poca.ufewhy the Ma~tyrs of our t1medeferve ':lOy lefs Commendnt.ion, than rh~ other in the Primi! tve Church; winch affu'redly are _i nferior unto them in no p01m of praifc; _ . whether we view the number of them that fuffcred, or greatDefs of their Torment~, or their :,~!~~:'fo11 confiancy in dying, or alfo confider t.hc fruit th~t they. brought to the amendment of Po!lcrity, tlnMm,~s ~nd increafe ofthe Gofpe~. They dtd water.wnh t_hetr B_lood the Truth th:~t was newly fpringif.,~~,Po· mg ~p;. fo thefe by thetr deaths refior~d tt a_gam, bemg fo decayed and f:tl~l down. They chrdl, m the foreward of the batrel, dtd receiVe the firfl:. lncoumer and Ytolence of their t&~t:m ~k;~;db;a~;~~~~~d~~~: ~~~tw~~at1:et~e?d~~ctJ~e:~~~a;Jr~~~6e;b:!1:. w~~j;~fkc;fa~~::~~(. bandmen of the World did fow the Fields of the Church, that firfl: by unm9nured :tnd wane; thefe with fatnefs of their Blood did caufe it to batten and frult:ifie. Would to God the Fruit might be fpeedily gathered into the Barn, which only remaineth behind to come. Now, if we afcribe fuch Reputation ~o godly Preachers (and worthily) which diligently Preach the Gofpcl of Chrifr, when they hve ~otwithfianding, by the benefit of time, without all fear ofPerfecution; how much more reafonable caufe have we tQ praife :md extol fuch men as ftoutly fpendtheir Lives for the defence of the fame? All thefe premiffes duly of out:. parts con. fidered and marked, feeing we have faun~ fo famo~sMartyrs in this our Ag", let us not f:til then in publilhing and feuing fort~ tbc;ir domgs, lefl: m that point we feem more unkind to them, than the Writers of the Primiuve Churc~ were unto thei~s. And though we repure not their A!he5, €hains, and Swords in fiead of Rdtcks; )'Ct let us y1eld thm much unto tht:irCommtmo· ration, to glorifie the Lord in his Saints, a~d. imitate their death (3s much as we may) wit~ like confl:ancy, or thei r Lives at the lt:an with hKc Innocency. They offered ,their Bodt~ willmgly to the rough h3ndling of th~ Tormentors:. and is i~ fo great a matter then for ou r part ro mar· tifie our Flefh, with all the mem~~rs thereof? T.hey neglected not onl)' the Riches and Glory of the World for the love of Chnn, but alfo thetr lives; and fl1all we th('n lteep fo great a fl:ir one againfl: another for the tranfit'ory trifles of this World? They cootinued in patient futfering, when they had moft wrong done to them,. and when their very heartS blood gufbed out of their Bodies ; :md yet will not· we forgive our poor Brother, be the injury never fo fmall, but are ready for every trifling offence to feek his defiruaion, rmd cut his throat. They wifbing well to all men, did of their own ac~ord forgive their Perlecutors; and therefore o~ght we, which are now the Pofierity and Chtldren of Martyrs, not to de~enerate frorn thetr fbrmer fieps, bat beiog admo~ifhed , by their Examples, if we cannot exprtfs their Charity toward all men, yet at leaH to imtt:lt!! the fame to our power and firength. let us give no caufe ofoffence to any. And ifany bt given to us, let us overcome it with patience, forgiving and not revenging the f::utle. And let us not only keep ...our Hands from !bedding of Blood, but our Tongues alfo frcm hurting the fa~e of othe~s. Befidcs, let us not lhrink, if cafe fo require, by Martyrdom, or lofs of Li fe:, accordmg to their Example, to yield up the fame in-the defc:nce of the lords Flock. Wbicb thing if men would do, much Jefs. contention ~nd bufinels..would be it~ tbe \Vorld than now is. And thus much touching the Utllity and Frutt to be taken of thi ~ Htftory. TO