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these things; while great and rich men, though as guilty as ourselves, are suffered to escape unpunished and unnoticed. The bishop answered, name any person, how great soever, who can be convicted of adultery; and I will give you leave to use me as roughly as you please, if I do not proceed against him with all the severity of justice. The intrepid prelate was soon as good as his word : for, in a few days after, he cited sir Anthony Kingston, a man of high consequence in that country, into the ecclesiastical court: and though, for some time, the knight behaved with great baughtiness and outrage, he was at last forced to do penance, and pay a fine of £500 besides (9).
As Dr. Hooper was thus a resolute asserter of virtue, so he asserted, with no less resolution, those grand evangelical doctrines, from the experimental belief of which, all genuine virtue flows.--He observes, that, in heaven, the souls of the faithful are “ for ever praising the Lord, in conjunction and society everlasting with the blessed company of God's elect, in perpetual joy (r).”—And he mentions it, as one capital instance of the patience of God's people on earth, that " They wait until the number of the elect be fulfilled (s).”— With an eye to the same precious doctrine of election, he adds, in a letter, written a few weeks before his martyrdom, that the glorified spirits of them who had, in all ages, suffered death for the cause of Christ, were joyfully expecting the happy day, “ When they shall receive their bodies again in immortality, and see the number of the elect associated with them in full and consummate joys (t).” He is equally explicit
, as to the necessity of grace. He justly observes, that true contentment under affliction, is the fruit of supernatural regeneration,
(9) Burnet, ibid. p. 209, 210. (s) Ibid. p. 133.
(r) Fox, iii. 132. (t) Ibid.
“ It is not the nature of man that can be contented, until it be regenerated and possessed with God's Spirit, to bear patiently the troubles of the mind, or of the body (u).”—Again : “ These things” (viz. the knowledge and love of heavenly objects] « are easy to be spoken of, but not so easy to be practised. Wherefore, seeing they be God's gifts, and none of ours to have of our own when we would, we must seek them at our heavenly Father's hand (cc).Howbeit, no man of himself can do this” [i. e. can pray and hope aright); “but the Spirit of God, that striketh the man's heart with fear, prayeth for the man stricken and feared, with unspeakable groanings (y).”_Once more: “Christ saith to every one of his people, by your own patience ye shall continue your life : not that man hath patience in [i. of] himself, but that he must bave it for himself of God, the only giver of it (z).”
On the great article of justification also, Hooper was a thorough Calvinist. This appears from the confession of faith (an extract of which is preserved in Burnet), which was signed, not only by Hooper himself, but by two bishops besides, and seven eminent ministers ; all, at that time, prisoners for the gospel : viz. Coverdale, bishop of Exeter; Farrar, bishop of St. David's; with Taylor, Philpot, Bradford, Crome, Sanders, Rogers, and Lawrence. In this excellent declaration, the heroic sufferers publicly certified, that they " held justification by faith: which faith,” said they, “is not only an opinion, but a certain persuasion, wrought by the Holy Ghost
, which doth illuminate the mind, and supple the heart to submit itself unfeigņedly to God.” They. add, that they “ acknowledged an inherent righteousness; yet, they believed, that justification, and
pardon of sins, came only by Christ's righteousness imputed to them (a).” (u) Ibid. p. 131. (x) Ibid.
(y) Ibid. (z) Ibid.
133. (a) Burnet's Hist. Reform. vol. ii. p. 265.
Let me, next, subjoin a word or two, concerning Hooper's doctrine of providence. “ God,” says he,“ bath such care and charge of us, that he will keep, in the midst of all troubles, the very hairs of our head: so that one of them shall not fall away, without the will and pleasure of our heavenly Father. Whether the hair, therefore, tarry on the head, or fall from the head, it is the will of the Father (6).”—Again : “ They” [i. e. all afflictions] “ be servants of God, to go and come as he commandeth them (c).”-Once more:
“ Of this I am assured, that the wicked world, with all its force and power, shall not touch one of the hairs of our heads, without leave and licence of our heavenly Father (d).”
A specimen of what he advances, respecting final perseverance, shall for the present, conclude his testimony. To a company of protestants, who had been surprized at a religious meeting, and committed to prison he thus wrote: “ God will go in and out with you, and will be present in your hearts and in your mouths. He that hath begun that work in you, will surely strengthen you in the same (e).”—In a letter to his own lady, he says; “ Remember, that although your (f) life, as all Christian men's be, be hid, and appeareth not, what it is; yet it is safe (as St. Paul saith) with God in Christ: and when Christ shall appear, then shall our lives be made open [i. e. be rendered conspicuous] with him in glory (9).”—He adds, a little lower: we may be tempted of the devil, the flesh, and the world ; but yet, although these things pinch, they do not pierce: and though they work sin in us, yet in Christ no damnation to those that be grafted
(6) Fox, vol. iii. p. 131. (c) Ibid. p. 132.
p• (e) Strype's Eccles. Memor. vol. iii. Append. No. 27. p. 78.
(f) He means, the soul of each person who is regenerated by the Holy Ghost.
(9) Fox, u. s. p. 132.
in him. Hereof may the Christian man learn both consolation and patience. Consolation, in that [notwithstanding] he is compelled, both in his body and goods, to feel pain and loss; and, in soul, heaviness and anguish of mind; howbeit, none of them both shall separate him from the love that God beareth him in Christ. He may learn patience, forasmuch as his enemies, both of body and soul, and the pains also they vex us withal for the time; if they tarry with us long as we live, yet, when death cometh, they shall avoid, and give place to such joys as be prepared for us in Christ (h).”—To one Mrs. Anne Warcop, who was in danger on account of the gospel, the holy bishop wrote as follows: “I did rejoice at the coming of this bearer, to understand of your constancy; and that you are fully resolved, by God's grace, rather to suffer extremity, than to go from the truth of God which you have professed. He that gave you grace to begin so infallible a truth, will follow you in the same unto the end (i).
From bishop Hooper, I pass on,
V. To Doctor Martin Bucer: a man, whose discretion, mildness and benevolence, procured him the name of “the moderate reformer;" and whose admirable talents obliged even Vossius to style him, Ter Maximum Bucerum. His judicious labours, during his residence in this kingdom, greatly assisted in the reformation of our church, at home; and his learned pen was no less zealously and successfully engaged in defending and vindicating her doctrine, worship, and discipline, from the calumnies of papists, and from the ill-judged exceptions of some foreign protestants, abroad.
Taking every thing into the account, he was, perhaps, in point of temper, conduct, and abilities, one of the most amiable and unexceptionable divines that ever lived:
(i) Ibid. p. 135.
though few persons have been more insulted and traduced by bigots of all denominations. He was born, A. D. 1491, at Schelestadt, in Al
In his early part of life he entered himself of the order of Dominican Friars; but, after a time, God showed him a more excellent way. Some writings of Erasmus are said (k) to have given his mind the first shock against popery. His doubts were afterwards improved into a full conviction of the truth, by the books of Luther. As Luther's writings had driven the nail to the head; so some personal interviews, which Bucer had with that reformer, first at Heildelberg, and then at Worms, in 1521, clinched the nail so effectually, that Bucer determined from that time forward, to profess the doctrines of the gospel more openly than ever. The conversations of these two great men, during those memorable interviews, appear to have turned chiefly on the articles of free-will and justification.
In the year 1548, Bucer was (not at the recommendation of Melancthon, but at the recommendation of archbishop (1) Cranmer) invited by king Edward, from Strasburg to England. The learned Fagius was invited at the same time, and accompanied Bucer hither. Being arrived, Bucer was made divinity-professor at Cambridge; with a salary, treble to what any of his predecessors had enjoyed. “ These grave and learned doctors,” says Mr. Strype, meaning Martin Bucer and Peter Martyr,
were placed there (viz. in the two universities; Bucer at Cambridge, and Martyr at Oxford]; the lord Protector and the archbishop judging them the fittest persons to inform the students in their notions and doctrines concerning religion. Because,
(k) Melch. Adam. vit. Theolog. German. p. 211.-Edit. Heidelb. 1620.'
(1) See Strype's Eccl. Mem. vol. ii. p. 121.-Also, Melch. Adam. p. 219.