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set, non tam exiguis pellibus arctata fuissent Augustini, Epiphanii, Philastrii volumina: tot certè fuissent schisinata, quot unquam a noto Evangelio Ecclesiæ doctores extiterunt.
Mittamus numerum, de pondere videamus. Obstrepant quantum volunt Malevoli, inter hos, non de solidis Christianæ Fidei membris, sed de cute, lis est: inter illos, non de cute quidem, sed de veste; at neque de veste ipså, sed de fimbriis. Dogmata sunt quædam scholastica, classis medioxumæ, Corollaria Theologica, de quibus dissentimus, aut Ritus fortè Externi: Fidei Christianæ Principia non sunt.
Sed et ejusmodi sunt hæ controversiæ, quæ, ubi semel deferbuerit, sive zeli sive iracundiæ, æstus, seque mutuè probè intellexit pars utraque, facilè possunt reconciliationem admittere.
Neque minùs profectò ab ipsis inter se Pontificiis dimicatum est. Magis tegunt illi suas inimicitias; non exercent minus. Magis sapiunt; non magis concordant. Nec quod est, ausim dicere, religionis caput, in quo unà et nobis dissonent, et consonent omnes sibi.
Neque denique, graviùs istic inter nos disconvenit, quàm olim, inter sanctissimos Ecclesiæ Patres; quorum, tamen, lites non tanto posterorum clamore excipi ubique solent. Mitto privata tantorum virorum avlinodopripeale, plena insuavis cujusdam, et penè dixissem
multiplying quarrels! If it had been so of old, so small hides had not served to contain the volumes of Augustin, Epiphanius, Philastrius: there had not been fewer sects, than teachers, since the publishing of the Gospel.
But let us pass over the number, and come to the weight. Let the Malicious prattle what they will, with some of ours, the controversy is not about any solid limbs of Christian Faith, but only of the very skin: with some others, not about the skin, but the garment rather; not about the garment itself neither, but of the very hem. There are certain scholastical opinions, of a middle rank, mere Theological Coroilaries, or perhaps some Outward Ceremonies, wherein we dissent: Principles of Christian Religion there are not.
Ánd withal these controversies are but such, as that, when the heat, whether of zeal or anger, shall abate, and either part shall well understand each other, they will easily admit of a reconciliation.
Neither have these very Romanists lesser quarrels amongst themselves. They can more hide their enmities; not exercise them less. If they be more wise; they are not more accordant. Neither is there, I dare say, any head of Religion, wherein they do at once differ from us, and agree all with one another.
Finally, our differences are no greater, than were those of old, among the holy Fathers of the Church; whose quarrels, notwithstanding, are not so odiously blazoned by posterity. I let pass the private scoldings of the Antients, not without some unpleasing, I
Immortalitate dignum est illud, quod de sanctissimo Athanasio
had almost said misbeseeming, tartness. I would rather set before
It is worthy of immortality, that which Gregory Nazianzen recordeth of holy Athanasius. "The Romans seemed to the Eastern Churches to follow the heresies of Sabellius, in denying of three
manis Arium sapere visi sunt, negando tres Personas : fervet lis: accedit magnus ille animarum dispensator; et, utrâque parte leniter benignèque accitâ, ita negotium transigit, ut, nominum usum concedens, rebus eos constringeret; lumenque profert, quo se mutuò contuerentur: nec mora: conscii suæ demum orthodoxias, ruunt illico in mutuos amplexus. Neque aliter profectò, uti pie crediderim, cederet nobis fratribus, si quis è cælo dextras jungeret Athanasius.
O, si clausis semel belli intestini ac nefandi portis: Reformatarumi Ecclesiarum Nutricii Principes, auctoritate suâ, Synodum indici juberent, quantum fieri potest, Generalem; in quâ, liberè modestèque, sententiam suam dicerent pars utraque litigantium, statuerenturque communes quidam termini, in quibus utraque tutò posset absque omni sui præjudicio acquiescere! Quàm facilè, fæsiciterque, sopirentur hæ tam funestæ lites! Precemur nos hæc, mei Fratres; precemur devotissimè.
Animosque, interea, ad pacem unitatemque placidè flectamus. Sit inter nos, quod Augustino Hieronymus, pura germanitas. Neque sinamus nos, leviculis quibusque opinionum minutiis, distrahi ac divelli. Obliviscamur fuisse unquam in rerum naturâ, quantum ad sectæ quidem ullius denotationem, Lutherum, Philippum, Zuinglium, Calvinum, Arminium, aut si quod mortale no
Hypostases: the Eastern likewise seemed to the Romans, to favour too much of Arius, in denying three Persons: the quarrel grew hot: then came that great dispenser of souls; and, having meekly and mildly called forth both sides before him, he so handled the business, that, granting them the free use of their terms, he tied them close to the matter; and shewed them a light, whereby they might behold one another: upon this, without more ado, finding themselves both in the right, they fall to mutual embracements. Neither would it speed otherwise with us brethren, as I do verily believe, if some Athanasius from heaven would but join our hands together.
Oh, if once the gates of intestine and horrid wars were shut up: and the Religious Princes, which are the Nursing Fathers of the Reformed Churches, would command, by virtue of their authority, a Synod to the assembled, as General as it might; wherein both parts, freely and modestly, might lay forth their opinions, and such common terms might be agreed upon, as wherein both parts might freely rest without prejudice to either! How easily then, how happily, might these grievous stirs be quietly pacified! Let us pray for this, my Brethren; let us pray devoutly.
In the mean while, let us all sweetly incline our hearts to peace and unity. Let there be amongst us, as St. Augustin to Jerome, pure brotherhood.
Neither let us suffer ourselves, upon every slight quirk of opinion, to be distracted or torn asunder. Let us forget that there were ever any such, in respect of the devotion of a sect, as Luther, Melancthon, Calvin, Zuinglius, Arminius, or if
men; quid enim nobis cum homine negotii est? Unum spiremus unum ardeamus, Jesum Christum.
Pleiades sumus Theologi, ut ingenuosè Gregorius: unà mi, cemus omnes, etsi non sine aliquo loci intervallo. Malo Punico grana plurima sunt sub uno cortice: nôstis mysterium: nos Mala Punica jungamus tintinnabulis: sonori simus, sed et concordes, Opera, ministeria, dona nostra universa, uno Deo Patri, Filio, Spiritui Sancto; uni Capiti, Christo; uni Corpori, Ecclesiæ, corde uno æternum voveamus; ut, uno tincti Baptismate, uno empti Pretio, unam Fidem professi, Unitatem Spiritùs retinentes in Vinculo Pacis, uno eodemque Cælo tandem fælicissimè perfruamur, per Jesum Christum Dominum nostrum: Cui, cum Patre, ac Spiritu, sit omnis honor et gloria, in sæcula sæculorum. Amen,
any other mortal name; for what have we to do with man? Let us breathe nothing, let us affect nothing, but Jesus Christ.
We Divines are Pleiades, as Gregory saith wittily: let us therefore shine still together, though not without some difference of place. In a pomegranate are many grains under one rind: you know the mystery: let us join these pomegranates to our bells: let us be loud, but consorted. Let us devote for ever, with one heart, all our operations, ministries, gifts, to one God, the Father, Son, and Holy Ghost; to one Head, Christ; one Body, the Church: that, being washed with one Baptism, ransomed with one Price, professing one Faith, and holding the Unity of the Spirit in the Bond of Peace, we may at last happily enjoy one and the same Heaven, through Jesus Christ our Lord: To whom, with the Father, and the Holy Spirit, be ascribed all honour and glory, for everSERMON XI.
THE BEST BARGAIN:
A SERMON; PREACHED TO THE COURT AT THEOBALD'S, ON SUNDAY,
SEPTEMBER 21, 1623,
TO THE RIGHT HONOURABLE
WILLIAM, EARL OF PEMBROKE,
LORD HIGH CHAMBERLAIN; CHANCELLOR OF THE UNIVERSITY OF OX
FORD; ONE OF HIS MAJESTY'S MOST HONOURABLE PRIVY COUNCIL,
LET it please you to receive from the press, what you vouchsafed to require from my pen: unworthy, I confess, either of the public light, or the beams of your Honour's judicious eyes ; yet such as, besides the motive of common importunity, I easily apprehended, might be not a little useful for the times, which, if ever, require quickening: Neither is it to no purpose, that the world should see in what stile we speak to the Court, not without acceptation. This, and whatever service I may be capable of, are justly devoted to your Lordship; whom all good hearts follow with true honour, as the great Patron of Learning, the sincere Friend of Religion, and rich Purchaser of Truth. The God of Heaven adă to the number of such peers, and to the measure of your Lordship’s graces and happiness,
PROVERBS xxiii. 23.
Buy the Truth, and sell it not. The
he subject of my Text, is a BARGAIN and SALE; a Bargain enjoined, a Sale forbidden: and the subject of both bargain and sale, is Truth; a Bargain able to make us all rich, a Sale able to make any of us miserable. Buy the Truth, and sell it not. A sentence of short sound, but large extent. The words are but seven sylla