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taken. For as we are inform'd, Farrel, and Viret, two Divines, (whom for that reafon I'm loth to call turbulent and feditious) having infinuated into the Populace, and difpofed them to Mutiny; by Tumult they compell'd their Bishop (then their immediate temporal Lord, who as Calvin confeffes, (a) had the power of the Sword, and other Rights of Jurifdiction) to flee out of the Town. And having unjustifiably compaffed his Expulfion, they kept him excluded, and prefently alter'd the Religion of the City, building it after a new Model, upon the Ruins of the old Government. I mention not this with cenforious Reflexion, but with real concern and trouble, only in Reforming, it illustrates our Church's moderation.
And as he exercised it laudably then, fo fhe was never more expreffive of it, nor kept closer to it than now of late Years: Of which the Toleration Att is one unquestionable proof, as Stopping the Bill against occafional Conformity is another. And tho' upon that Bill they of the Church of England divided, and between the Parties in the bonourable Houfes there happen'd fome struggle about it; yet it being thrown out as it was, and by a Majority of the Bi
(a) Jus gladii & alias Civilis Jurifdictionis partes. Ep. ad Cardin Sacolet.
hops, this fhews, how that Church stands affected towards Moderation.
For this was a Condefcenfion fo unusual, and an Inftance of fuch extream Kindness, as is not found in Chriftian Common-wealths. The High and Mighty States fuffer none to share in their Government, that don't conform to their Religion. Yet fo politic are the Dutch reputed by many, that they are actually made a Rule, or Pattern of modern Meafures in grand Concerns. Here therefore our Church demonftrates that he is more moderate than others, by going beyond the bounds of common Favour: and when the strives by Charms of trained Compliance to draw Dif fenters into Her Bofom, O! How can they withstand Her alluring Methods!
Indeed 'tis too obvious to note, that fome of our late, and some of our prefent Bishops, for their yielding Carriage here, have been charg'd with a black Imputation; as if by being too moderate, they would ruin Epifcopacy: But may they not as well be allow'd to preserve it by that very means, tho' their cafe by Mifprifion be called Lukewarmness? For fhould they have carry'd things high, or with too much heat, they might to have fubverted that excellent Government, which their cooler and more prudent Management have helped to perpetuate. And tho' they are reflected on, as indifferent to the Church,
Church, and perhaps difaffected to their own order; we need not doubt, but (as has been faid before) several of them would die to establifh Her Conftitution, rather than wittingly overthrow, or weaken it. And therefore whatever undeferved Afperfions the Holy Fathers are beffattered with upon thofe Accounts, they ought to be honoured, and alfo imitated: And had thofe, imploy'd in the Savoy Transaction on our Part, been of their mild and fagacious Spirit, poffibly we and the best Diffenters might now have been one, and our Church in ftill a more flourishing Condition. Tho' 'tis hard for Bishops to be cenfur'd for that Virtue, Evangelical Meekness; and fcarce be allow'd to be Bishops, because they are of that gentle Temper, which comes the nearest to their Gofpel-Character.
IV, Her CHARITY is very great Charity and exemplary, which makes Her as ready to do good to Men, as Her Zeal makes Her forward to Honour God. And as this excellent Principle, wherever it dwells, Springs up, and spreads into two Kinds or Branches, Spiritual, and corporal; fo does Her's.
Spiritual Charity (to fay nothing of the Society for propagating the Gospel, nor of the Eleemofynary Schools for inftructing poor Children, which would require a whole Volume to fhew their Excellence and Ufefulness) She exercises remarkably in Devout Prayer, As in beseeching
God (a) to bring into the Way of Truth, all fuch as bave erred, and are deccived. To strengthen fuch as do ftand, to comfort and help the weak-bearted, to raise up them that fall, and finally to beat down Satan under our Feet. To fuccour belp and comfort all that are in Danger, Neceffity, and Tribulation. To preferve all that travel by Land, or by Water, all Women labouring with Child, all fick Perfons, and young Children, and to fhew his pity upon all Prifoners and Captives, To defend and provide for the fatherless Children and Widows, and all that are defolate and opPreffed. To have Mercy upon all Men, to forgive our Enemies, Perfecutors and Slanderers, and to turn their Hearts. So that if in Devotions any thing may be called curious and fine, here it is fo even to perfection: For here is as admirable a Sorites of charitable Petitions, or as noble a Chain of well-digefted interceffional Requests as need be defired. And tho' in this Chain there are many Links, yet fo far are all from being fuperfluous, that not one can be broken off without marring or mutilating the compleatness of it.
Yet let me remark, that what our Church bere prays for in grofs, by imploring God's Mercy upon all Men; in another Place She does it more particularly, begging of Him, that He (b) would have Mercy upon all Jews, (a) See the Litany.
(b) In the third Collect for Good-Friday.
Turks, Infidels, and Hereticks, and take from them all Ignorance, Hardness of Heart, and Contempt of his Word; and fo fetch them kome to his Flock, that they may be faved among the Remnant of the true Ifraelites. Which makes it obvious to think, how different from, and contrary to this Practice that of another Church is; who, instead of interceding for Infidels, Excommunicates, and Anathematizes profeffed Chriftians, and purer than fhe herself has been, because they dare not be of her Communion.
But how, I pray, does our Church requite this her contemptuous, and intentionally moft cruel Ufage? Surely in a most kind and cha ritable Manner, as appears by the Sixty Sixth Canon. For there fhe injoins Minifters to confer with Popish Recufants, if they have any in their Parishes; and to labour diligently with them, from Time to Time, to reclaim them, from their Errour. Nay, in fome Cafes, fhe makes it the Work of the Bishop himself (as bis important Affairs will permit) to ufe bis best Endeavour by Inftruction, Perfwafion, and all good Means be can devife, to reclaim them, that are fo affected. A very high Expreffion of Charity, and much more raised and noble for being a requital of Her contrary Carriage,