Neal - Houston-Packer Collection BX9333 .N4 1754 v1

E.....:wm.,«.,.. ;..... ,,..,.,....... 9 The HISTORY of the Pt7RITANs.' Chap. IV. ern Thus the reformation obtain'd in fundry material points in the reigns of kin: Edward VI. and queen Elizabeth, before it had the fanétioti of f,,,155,%_19' parliament or convocation ; And though queen Mary difallowed of the fu- prewacy, the made ufe of it to reftore the old religion, before the laws for abolifhing it were repealed. Hence alto they indulged the foreign . prot.ftants the liberty of their feparate difcipline, which they denied to, their own countrymen. The Puritansdifown'd all foreign jurifdklion over the church, as much as their brethren, but could not admit of that extenfive power the crown, claimed by the fupremacy, apprehending it unreafonable, that the religi on of a whole nation, fhould be at the difpofal of a tingle lay-perfon; for let the apoftle's rule, That all things be done decently and in order, mean what it will, it was not directed to the prince or civil magiftrate. How- ever they took the oath, with the queen's explication in her injunEtions, as only reftoring her majefty to the ancient and natural rights of fovereign princes over their fubjets. 2. It was admitted by the court reformers, that the church of Rome was a true church, though corrupt inforce points of dobirine and govern ment; that all her miniftrations were valid, and that the pope was a true bifhop of Rome, though not of the univerfal church. It was thought ne- ceflisry to maintain this, for the fupport of the chara&er of our bifhops, who could not otherwife derive their fucceffion from the apoftles. But the Puritans affirmed the pope to be antichrift, the church of Rome to be no true church, and all her miniftrations to be fuperftitious and idolatrous ; they renounced her communion, and durft not rifle the validity of their ordinations, upon an uninterrupted line of fuccefion from the apoftles, through their hands. 3. It was agreed by all, that the holy fcriptures were a perfect rule of faith; but the bops and court reformers didnot allow them a /landard of difcipline or church government, affirming that our Saviour and his apollles left it to the difcretion of the civil magiftrate, in thofe places where chri/lia- nity fhouldobtain, to accommodate the government of the church to the policy of the/late. But the Puritans apprehended the holy fcriptures tobe a flandard of difcipline, as well as doctrine; at leaft that nothing fhould be impofed as neceffary, but what was exprefly contained in, or derived from then by neceffary confequence. And if it fhould be proved, that all things ne- ceffary to the well government of the church, could not be deduced from holy fcripture, they maintained that the difcretionary power was not vefled in the civil magiftrate, but in the fpiritual officers of the church. ¢. The court reformers maintained, that the prallice of the primitive church for the firft four orfive centuries, was a properfandardof church govern-