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and to be over all
all persons, ing, and in judging of causes ecclesiastical; first, to explain therein our meaning, it hath been taken as if we did hold, that kings may prescribe what themselves think good to be done in the service of God: how the word shall be taught, how the sacraments administered; that kings may personally sit in the consistory where the bishops do, hearing and determining what causes soever do appertain unto the church; that kings and queens, in their own proper persons, are by judicial sentence to decide the questions which do arise about matters of faith and Christian religion; that kings may excommunicate: finally, that kings may do whatsoever is incident unto the office and duty of an ecclesiastical judge. Which opinion, because we account as absurd as they who have fathered the same upon us, we do them to wit, that this is our meaning, and no otherwise: there is not within this realm an ecclesiastical officer, that may, by the authority of his own place, command universally throughout the king's dominions: but they of this people whom one may command, are to another's commandment unsubject. Only the king's royal power is of so large compass, that no man commanded by him according to the order of law, can plead himself to be without the bounds and limits of that authority; I say, according to order of law, because with us the highest have thereunto so tied themselves, that otherwise than so, they take not upon them to command any. And, that kings should be in such sort supreme commanders over all men, we hold it requisite, as well for the ordering of spiritual as civil affairs; inasmuch as without universal authority in this kind, they should not be able when need is, to do as virtuous kings have done. 2 Chron. Josiah, purposing to renew the house of the Lord, assemxxiv.5-9. bled the priests and Levites; and when they were together, gave them their charge, saying, Go out unto the cities of Judah, and gather of Israel money to repair the house of the Lord from year to year, and haste the things: but the Levites hastened not. Therefore the king commanded Jehoiada, the chief-priest, and said unto him, Why hast thou not required of the Levites, to bring in out of Judah and Jerusalem, the tax of Moses, the servant of the Lord, and of the congregation of Israel, for the tabernacle of the testimony? For wicked Athaliah, and her children, brake up the house of the Lord God, and all the things that were dedicated for
the house of the Lord, did they bestow upon Baalim. Therefore the king commanded, and they made a chest, and set it at the gate of the house of the Lord without, and they made a proclamation through Judah and Jerusalem, to bring unto the Lord the tax of Moses the servant of the Lord laid upon Israel in the wilderness." Could either he have done this, or after him Ezekias the like concerning the celebration of the Passover, but that all sorts of men in all things did owe unto these their sovereign rulers the same obedience which sometimes Joshua had them by vow and promise bound unto? "Whosoever shall rebel against thy commandments, Josh. and will not obey thy words in all thou commandest him, let him be put to death: only be strong and of a good courage." Furthermore, judgment ecclesiastical we say is necessary for decision of controversies rising between man and man, and for correction of faults committed in the affairs of God: unto the due execution whereof there are three things necessary, laws, judges, and supreme governors of judgments. What courts there shall be, and what causes shall belong unto each court, and what judges shall determine of every cause, and what order in all judgments shall be kept; of these things the laws have sufficiently disposed, so that his duty who sitteth in any such court is to judge, not of, but after the same law; "Imprimis illud observare debet judex, ne Just. de aliter judicet quam legibus, constitutionibus, aut moribus Offic. Jud. proditum est, ut imperator Justinianus;" which laws (for we mean the positive laws of our realm concerning ecclesiastical affairs) if they otherwise dispose of any such thing, than according to the law of reason, and of God, we must both acknowledge them to be amiss, and endeavour to have them reformed: but touching that point, what may be objected shall after appear. Our judges in causes ecclesiastical are either ordinary or commissionary: ordinary, those whom we term ordinaries; and such, by the laws of this land, are not but prelates only, whose power to do that which they do, is in themselves, and belonging to the nature of their ecclesiastical calling. In spiritual causes, a lay-person may be no ordinary ; a commissionary judge there is no let but that he may be; and that our laws do evermore refer the ordinary judgment of spiritual causes unto spiritual persons, such as are termed ordinaries, no man which knoweth any thing of the practice of this
realm can easily be ignorant. Now, besides them which are authorized to judge in several territories, there is required a universal power which reacheth over all, imparting supreme authority of government over all courts, all judges, all causes; the operation of which power is as well to strengthen, maintain, and uphold, particular jurisdictions, which haply might else be of small effect; as also to remedy that which they are not able to help, and to redress that wherein they at any time do otherwise than they ought to do. This power being sometime in the bishop of Rome, who by sinister practices had drawn it into his hands, was for just considerations by public consent annexed unto the king's royal seat and crown; from thence the authors of reformation would translate it into their national assemblies or synods; which synods are the only helps which they think lawful to use against such evils in the church, as particular jurisdictions are not sufficient to 1 Eliz. redress. In which cause, our laws have provided, that the cap. 1. king's supereminent authority and power shall serve as namely, when the whole ecclesiastical state, or the principal persons therein, do need visitation and reformation; when, in any part of the church, errors, schisms, heresies, abuses, offences, contempts, enormities, are grown; which men in their several jurisdictions either do not, or cannot help. Whatsoever any spiritual authority and power (such as legates from the see of Rome did sometimes exercise) hath done or might heretofore have done for the remedies of those evils in lawful sort (that is to say, without the violation of the laws of God or nature in the deed done), as much in every degree our laws have fully granted that the king for ever may do, not only by setting ecclesiastical synods on work, that the thing may be their act and the king their motioner unto it, for so much perhaps the masters of the reformation will grant; but by commissions few or many, who having the king's letters patent, may in the virtue thereof execute the premises as agents in the right, not of their own peculiar and ordinary, but of his supereminent power. When men are wronged by inferior judges, or have any just cause to take exception against them; their way for redress is to make their appeal; an appeal is a present delivery of him which maketh it out of the hands of their power and jurisdictions from whence it is made. Pope Alexander having sometimes
Hist. Florent. lib. i.
the king of England at advantage, caused him, amongst other things, to agree, that as many of his subjects as would, might have appeal to the court of Rome. "And thus (saith Machiavel. one) that whereunto a mean person at this day would scorn to submit himself, so great a king was content to be subject to. Notwithstanding, even when the pope (saith he) had so great authority amongst princes which were far off, the Romans he could not frame to obedience, nor was able to obtain that himself might abide at Rome, though promising not to meddle with other than ecclesiastical affairs." So much are things that terrify more feared by such as behold them aloof off than at hand. Reformers I doubt not in some causes will admit appeals, but appeals made to their synods; even as the church of Rome doth allow of them so they be made to the bishop of Rome. As for that kind of appeal which the 25 Hen. English laws do approve from the judge of any certain VIII. c. 19. ticular court unto the king, as the only supreme governor on earth, who by his delegates may give a final definitive sentence, from which no farther appeal can be made; will their platform allow of this? Surely, forasmuch as in that estate which they all dream of, the whole church must be divided into parishes, in which none can have greater or less authority and power than another; again, the king himself must be a common member in the body of his own parish, and the causes of that only parish must be by the officers thereof determinable; in case the king had so much favour or preferment, as to be made one of those officers (for otherwise by their positions he were not to meddle any more than the meanest amongst his subjects with the judgment of any ecclesiastical cause), how is it possible they should allow of appeals to be made from any other abroad to the king? To receive appeals from all other judges, belongeth to the highest in power of all, and to be in power over all (as touching judgment in ecclesiastical causes), this, as they think, belongeth only to synods. Whereas therefore, with us kings do exercise over all things, persons, and causes, supreme power, both of voluntary and litigious jurisdictions; so that according to the one they incite, reform, and command; according to the other, they judge universally, doing both in far other sort than such as have ordinary spiritual power; oppugned we are herein by some colourable show of argument, as if to
p. 154. 2 Chron.
T.C... grant thus much to any secular person it were unreasonable: "For sith it is (say they) apparent out of the Chronicles, that xix. 5. judgment in church-matters pertaineth to God; seeing likeHeb.v.1. wise it is evident out of the apostles, that the high-priest is set over those matters in God's behalf; it must needs follow that the principality or direction of the judgment of them is, by God's ordinance, appertaining to the high-priest, and consequently to the ministry of the church; and if it be by God's ordinance appertaining unto them, how can it be translated from them to the civil magistrate?" Which argument,. briefly drawn into form, lieth thus :-That which belongeth unto God, may not be translated unto any other but whom he hath appointed to have it in his behalf; but principality of judgment in church-matters appertaineth unto God, which hath appointed the high-priest, and consequently the ministry of the church alone to have it in his behalf; ergo, it may not from them be translated to the civil magistrate. The first of which propositions we grant, as also in the second branch which ascribeth unto God principality in church-matters. But, that either he did appoint none but only the high-priest to exercise the said principality for him; or that the ministry of the church may in reason from thence be concluded to have alone the same principality by his appointment, these two points we deny utterly. For, concerning the high-priest, Heb. v. 1. there is, first, no such ordinance of God to be found; "Every high-priest (saith the apostle) is taken from amongst men, and is ordained for men in things pertaining to God;" whereupon it may well be gathered, that the priest was indeed ordained of God to have power in things appertaining unto God. For the apostle doth there mention the power of of fering gifts and sacrifices for sin; which kind of power, was not only given of God unto priests, but restrained unto priests only. The power of jurisdiction and ruling authority, this also God gave them, but not them alone. For it is held, as all men know, that others of the laity were herein joined by the law with them. But, concerning principality in churchaffairs (for of this our question is, and of no other), the priest neither had it alone, nor at all, but in spiritual or churchaffairs (as hath been already shewed), it was the royal prerogative of kings only. Again, though it were so, that God had appointed the high-priest to have the said principality