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he does not believe all to have been done, that there is set down. And he teacheth the * Book of Job to be as it were an argument for a fable (or comedy) to set before us an example of patiencer And he + delivers this general censure of the prophets' books—the sermons of no prophet were written whole and perfect; but their disciples and auditors snatched now one sentence, and then another, and so put them all into one book, and by this means the Bible was conserved. If this were so, the book of the prophets, being not written by themselves, but promiscuously and casually by their disciples, will soon be called in question. Are not these errors of Luther fundamental ? and yet, if protestants deny the infallibility of the church, upon what certain ground can they disprove these Lutheran and Luciferian blasphemies? O godly reformer of the Roman church! But to return to our English canon of Scripture. In the New Testament, by the abovementioned rule (of whose authority was never any doubt in the church) divers books of the New Testament must be discanonized, to wit, all those of which some ancients have doubted, and those which divers Lutherans have of late denied. It is worth the observation, how the beforementioned sixth article doth specify by Dame all the books of the Old Testament, which they

hold for canonical; but those of the New, without naming any one, they shuffle over with this generality—'all the books of the New Testament, as they are commonly received, we do receive and account them canonical.” The mystery is easy to be unfolded. If they had descended to

Tit. de lib. Vet. et Nov, Test.

Fol. 380.

particulars, they must have contradicted some of their chiefest brethren. As they are commonly received,' &c. I ask, by whom? By the church of Rome? Then, by the same reason they must receive divers books of the Old Testament, which they reject. By Lutherans ? Then with Lutherans they may deny some books of the New Testament. If it be the greater, or less number of voices, that must ery up or down the canon of Scripture, our Roman canon will prevail : and among protestants the certainty of their faith must be reduced to an uneertain controversy of fact, whether the number of those who reject, or of those others who receive such and such Scriptures, be greater : their faith must alter according to years and days. When Luther first appeared, he and his disciples were the greater number of that new church; and so this claim (of being commonly received") stood for them, till Zuinglius and Calvin grew to some equal, or greater number than that of the Lutherans, and then this rule of commonly received' will canonize their canon against the Lutherans. I would gladly know, why, in the former part of their article, they say both of the Old and New Testament: In the name of the Holy Scripture, we do understand those canonical books of the Old and New Testament, of whose authority was never any doubt in the church : and, in the latter part, speaking again of the New Testament, they give a far different rule, saying—All the books of the New Testament, as they are commonly received, we receive and account them canonical.' This I say is a rule much different from the former (of whose authority was never any doubt in the church);- for some books might be said to be Scommonly received,' although they were sometime doubted of by some. If to be commonly received," pass for a good rule to know the canon of the New Testament, why not of the Old ? Above all we desire to know, upon what infallible ground in some books they agree with us against Luther, and divers principal Lutherans, and in others jump with Luther against us? But seeing they disagree among them, şelves, it is evident, that they have no certain rule to know the canon of Scripture, in assigning whereof some of them must of necessity err; because of contradictory propositions, both cannot be true. .- 10.“ Moreover, the letters, syllables, words, phrase, or matter contained in Holy Scripture, have no necessary or natural connexion with Divine revelation or inspiration : and, therefore, by seeing, reading, or understanding them, we cannot infer, that they proceed from God, or be confirmed by Divine authority; as, because creatures involves a necessary relation, connexion, and dependance upon their Creator, philosophers may, by the light of natural reason, demonstrate the existence of one prime cause of all things. In Holy Writ there are innumerable truths not surpassing the sphere of human wit, which are, or may be, delivered by pagan writers, in the self-same words and phrases as they are in Scripture. And as for some truths peculiar to Christians (for example, the mystery of the blessed Trinity, &c.) the only setting them down in writing is not enough to be assured, that such a writing is the undoubted word of God; otherwise some sayings of Plato, Trismegistus, Sibyls, Ovid, &c. must be esteemed cancinical Scripture, because they fall upon some trutas proper to Christian religion. The internal

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light and inspiration, which directed and moved the authors of canonical Scripture, is a hidden quality infused into their understanding and will, and hath no such particular sensible influence into the external writing, that in it we can discover, or from it demonstrate, any such secret light and inspiration; and therefore to be assured, that such a writing is Divine, we cannot know from itself alone, but by some other extrinsical authority.

11. “ And here we appeal to any man of judgment, whether it be not a vain brag of some protestants, to tell us--that they wot full well what is Scripture, by the light of Scripture itself, or (as D. Potter words it) by* that glorious beam of Divine light, which shines therein ;' even as our eye distinguisheth light from darkness, without any other help than light itself; and as our ear knows a voice, by the voice itself alone. But this vanity is refuted by what we said even now, that the external Scripture hath no apparent or necessary connexion with Divine inspiration or revelation. Will D. Potter hold all his brethren for blind men, for not seeing that glorious beam of Divine light which shines in Scripture, about which they cannot agree? corporal light may be discerned by itself alone, as being evident, proportionate, and connatural to our faculty of seeing. The Scripture is Divine, and inspired by God, is a truth exceeding the natural capacity and compass of man's understanding, to us obscure, and to be believed by. Divine faith, which, according to the apostle, is, argumentum f non apparentium; an argument, or conviction of things not evident--and

* Page 141.

+ Heb. xi. l.

therefore no wonder if Scripture do not manifest itself by itself alone, but must require some other means for applying it to our understanding: Nevertheless, their own similitudes and instances make against themselves : for, suppose a man had never read, or heard of sun or moon, fire, candle, &c. and should be brought to behold a light, yet in such sort as that the agent or cause efficient from which it proceeded, were kept hidden from him; could such a one, by beholding the light, certainly know, whether it were produced by the sun, or moon, &c. or, if one heard a voice, and had never known the speaker, could he know from whom in particular that voice proceeded ? they, who look upon Scripture, may well see that some one wrote it; but that it was written by Divine inspiration, how shall they know? Nay, they cannot so much as know who wrote it, unless they first know the writer, and what hand he writes; as likewise, I cannot know whose voice it is I hear, unless I first both know the person who speaks, and with what voice he useth to speak: and yet even all this supposed, I may perhaps be deceived. For there may be voices so like, and hands counterfeited, that men may be deceived by them, as birds were by the grapes of that skil. ful painter. Now since protestants affirm, knowledge concerning God as our supernatural end, must be taken from Scripture, they cannot in Scripture alone discern, that it is his voice or writing, because they cannot know from whom a writing or voice proceeds, unless first they know the person who speaketh or writeth: nay, I

say more; by Scripture alone they cannot so much as know, that any person doth in it, or by it, speak

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