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the confuter; opportunely. For why then fhould the fervant take upon him to use those things which his mafter had unfitted himself to use, that he might teach his minifters to follow his fteps in the fame ministry? But they were offered him to a bad end." So they prove to the prelates, who, after their preferment, moft ufually change the teaching labour of the word, into the unteaching ease of lordship over confciences and purses. But he proceeds, "God enticed the Ifraelites with the promife of Canaan;" did not the prelates bring as flavish minds with them, as the Jews brought out of Egypt? they had left out that infiance. Befides that it was then the time, whenas the best of them, as St. Paul faith, "was fhut up unto the faith under the law their schoolmafter," who was forced to entice them as children with childish enticements. But the gofpel is our manhood, and the miniftry fhould be the manhood of the gofpel, not to look after, much lefs fo bafely to plead for earthly rewards. "But God incited the wifeft man Solomon with thefe means." Ah, confuter of thyfelf, this example hath undone thee; Solomon afked an understanding heart, which the prelates have little care to afk. He afked no riches, which is their chief care; therefore was the prayer of Solomon pleafing to God; he gave him wifdom at his requeft, and riches without afking, as now he gives the prelates riches at their feeking, and no wifdom because of their perverfe afking. But he gives not over yet, "Mofes had an eye to the reward." To what reward, thou man that lookeft with Balaam's eyes? To what reward had the faith of Mofes an eye? He that had forfaken all the greatnefs of Egypt, and chose a troublesome journey in his old age through the wilder nefs, and yet arrived not at his journey's end. His faithful eyes were fixed upon that incorruptible reward, promised to Abraham and his feed in the Meffiah; he fought a heavenly reward, which could make him happy, and never hurt him, and to fuch a reward every good man may have a refpc&t; but the prelates are eager of fuch rewards as cannot make them happy, but can only make them worfe. Jacob, a prince born, vowed that if God would
would "but give him bread to eat and raiment to put on, then the Lord fhould be his God." But the prelates of mean birth, and ofttimes of loweft, making fhow as if they were called to the fpiritual and humble ministry of the gofpel, yet murmur, and think it a hard fervice, unlefs, contrary to the tenour of their profeffion, they may eat the bread and wear the honours of princes: fo much more covetous and base they are than Simon Magus, for he profered a reward to be admitted to that work, which they will not be meanly hired to. But, faith he, "Are not the clergy members of Chrift, why fhould not each member thrive alike?" Carnal textman! as if worldly thriving were one of the privileges we have by being in Chrift, and were not a providence ofttimes extended more liberally to the infidel than to the christian. Therefore muft the minifters of Chrift not be over rich or great in the world, because their calling is fpiritual, not fecular; because they have a special warfare, which is not to be entangled with many impediments; because their master Chrift gave them this precept, and fet them this example, told them this was the mystery of his coming, by mean things and perfons to fubdue mighty oncs: and laftly, becaufe a middle eftate is moft proper to the office of teaching, whereas higher dignity teaches far lefs, and blinds the teacher. Nay, faith the confuter, fetching his laft endeavour, "the prelates will be very loth to let go their baronies, and votes in parliament," and calls it "God's caufe," with an infufferable impudence. "Not that they love the honours and the means," good men and generous! "but that they would not have their country made guilty of fuch a facrilege and injuftice!" A worthy patriot for his own corrupt ends. That which he imputes as facrilege to his country, is the only way left them to purge that abominable facrilege out of the land, which none but the prelates are guilty of; who, for the discharge of one fingle duty, receive and keep that which might be enough to fatisfy the labours of many painful minifters better deferving than themselves; who poffefs huge benefices for lazy performances, great promotions only for the execution
of a cruel difgofpelling jurifdiction; who ingrofs many pluralities under a nonrefident and flubbering dispatch. of fouls; who let hundreds of parishes famifh in one. diocefe, while they the prelates are mute, and yet enjoy that wealth that would furnish all thofe dark places with able supply; and yet they eat, and yet they live at the rate of earls, and yet hoard up; they who chafe away all the faithful fhepherds of the flock, and bring in a dearth of fpiritual food, robbing thereby the church of her deareft treasure, and fending herds of fouls ftarveling to Hell, while they feast and riot upon the labours of hireling curates, confuming and purloining even that which by their foundation is allowed, and left to the poor, and to reparations of the church. These are they who have bound the land with the fin of facrilege, from which mortal engagement we shall never be free, till we have totally removed with one labour, as one individual thing, prelaty and facrilege. And herein will the king be a true defender of the faith, not by paring or leffening, but by diftributing in due proportion the maintenance of the church, that all parts of the land may equally partake the plentiful and diligent preaching of the faith, the fcandal of ceremonies thrown out that delude and circumvent the faith; and the ufurpation of prelates laid level, who are in words the fathers, but in their deeds, the oppugners of the faith. This is that which will beft confirm him in that glorious title. Thus ye have heard, readers, how many fhifts and wiles the prelates have invented to fave their ill got booty. And if it be true, as in fcripture it is foretold, that pride and covetoufness are the fure marks of thofe falfe prophets which are to come; then boldly conclude thefe to be as great feducers as any of the latter times. For between this and the judgment day do not look for any arch deceivers, who in fpite of reformation will ufe more craft, or lefs fhame to defend their love of the world and their ambition, than these prelates have done. And if ye think that foundness of reason, or what force of argument foever will bring them to an ingenuous filence, ye think that which will never be, But if ye take that courfe which Erafmus was wont
to fay Luther took against the pope and monks; if ye denounce war against their mitres and their bellies, ye fhall foon difcern that turban of pride, which they wear upon their heads, to be no helmet of falvation, but the mere metal and hornwork of papal jurifdiction; and that they have alfo this gift, like a certain kind of fome that are poffeffed, to have their voice in their bellies, which, being well drained and taken down, their great oracle, which is only there, will foon be dumb; and the divine right of epifcopacy, forthwith expiring, will put us no more to trouble with tedious antiquities and difputes.
MASTER SAMUEL HARTLIB.
I AM long fince persuaded, that to say or do aught worth memory and imitation, no purpose or refpect fhould fooner move us than fimply the love of God, and of mankind. Nevertheless to write now the reforming of education, though it be one of the greatest and noblest designs that can be thought on, and for the want whereof this nation perishes; I had not yet at this time been induced, but by your earnest entreaties and ferious conjurements; as having my mind for the prefent half diverted in the purfuance of fome other affertions, the knowledge and the use of which cannot but be a great furtherance both to the enlargement of truth, and honeft living with much. more peace. Nor fhould the laws of any private friendship have prevailed with me to divide thus, or tranfpofe my former thoughts, but that I fee thofe aims, thofe actions, which have won you with me the efteem of a perfon fent hither by fome good providence from a far country to be the occafion and incitement of great good to this ifland. And, as I hear, you have obtained the fame repute with men of moft approved wifdom, and fome of the highest authority among us; not to mention the learned correfpondence which you hold in foreign parts, and the extraordinary pains and diligence, which you have used in this matter both here and beyond the feas; either by the definite will of God fo ruling, or the peculiar fway of nature, which alfo is God's working. VOL. I. T Neither