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they are not in the Scriptures mentioned as parts or members of the Church, nor can be imagined to be built upon the Prophets or Apostles ; being we are at this time to speak of the proper notion of the Church, therefore I shall not look upon it as comprehending any more than the Sons of Men Again, being though Christ was the Lamb Nain before the Foundation of the World, and whosoever from the beginning pleased God, were saved by his Blood; yet because there was a vast difference between the several Dirpensations of the Law and Gospel, because our Saviour fpake expressly of building himself a Church when the Jewish Synagogue was about to fail, becaule Catholicilm, which is here attributed unto the Church, must be
understood in opposition to the legal Singularity of the Jewish Nation, be* Thus S. Igna-cause the ancient * Fathers were generally wont to distinguish between the tius speaking Synagogue and the Church, therefore I think it necessary to restrain this of Christ, av
Home Notion to Christianity. Tlapegs di sis Hiriemon? Sagay, x'lcxax, se leerwis, wij oi 1egon), oi'Arósodol, raj nxanoia. Ep. ad Philad. Where j 'Arancia is plainly taken for the multitude of Christians who were converted to the Faith by the Apostles, and those who were arterwards joined to them in the Profession of the same Faith. Sacrificia in populo, facrificia & in Ecclesia. Iren. 1.4. 6. 34. Disseminaverunt sermonem de Chrifto Patriarchæ & Prophetæ, demesfa eit autem Ecclesia, hoc eft, fructum percepit. Id. l. 4. 6. 24. Quid Judaicus populus circa beneficia divina perfidus & ingratus ? nonne quòd à Deo primum receflit iinpatientiæ crimen fuit. Impatientia etiam in Ecclesia hæreticos facit. S. Cypr. de Bono Parient. Quis non agnofcat Christuin reliquisse matrem Synagogam Judæorum veteri Teftamento carnaliter adhærentem, & adhælisle uxori suæ, S. Ecclesiæ ? s. Aug. contra Fauft. l. 12. 6. 8. Mater Sponsi Domini noftri Jesu Christi Synogaga eft ; proinde nurus ejus Ecclesia - Idem, Enar. in Pfal.44.
Thirdly, Therefore I observe that the only way to attain unto the knowledge of the true notion of the Church, is to search into the New Testament, and from the places there which mention it, to conclude what is the nature
of it. To which purpose it will be necessary to take notice that our Saviour 4 In quem in- first speaking of it, mentioneth it as that which † then was not, but afterwards gruerent-in was to be; as when he spake unto the great Apostle, a Thou art Peter, and Ecclefiam ? quam non- upon THIS?
i upon this rock I will build my Church, but when he ascended into Heaven, dum Apoftoli and the Holy Ghost came down, when Peter had converted b three thoutruxerant. Cand souls which were added to the c hundred and twenty Disciples, then Tert. de Bapt. 6. 16. Bapt. was there a Church, (and that built upon | Peter, according to our Saviour's a Mat. 16. 18. Promise,) for after that we read, d The Lord added to the Church daily fuch • Acts. 2. 41. as should be saved. A Church then our Saviour promised should be built, c Acts 1. 15. + Qualis es e- and by a Promise made. before his Death ; after his ascension, and upon the vertens atque pr ning of St. Peter, we find a Church built or constituted, and that of a commutans manifeftain nature capable of a daily increase. We cannot then take a better occasion to Domini in- search into the true notion of the Church of Christ, than by looking into the tentionein
origination and increase thereof; without which it is * impossible to have a personaliter hoc Petro right conception of it. conferentem. Super te, inquit, ædificabo Ecclefiam meam, o dabo tibi claves, non Ecclefiæ. Sic enim & exitus docet: in ipfo Ecclefia exstructa est, id est, per ipsum, ipse clavem imbuit, vides quam. Viri ifraelita, auribus mandate que dico : Fesum Nazarenum virum à Deo vobis deftinatum, & reliqua. Tertul. de Pudicitia. c. 21. So S. Bafil, E:di's go on a Purns Tausing voor rétegy 5 dies a wisews wepoxlu i la Tiv Toixadomili p 'Exxancias de goé pfvor. Adv. Eunom. 1. 2. S. Peter took upon himself the building of the Church, that is, to build the Church, which he then performed, when he preached the Gospel by which the Church was first cathered.
d Atts 2.47.
* Tertullian mentioning the Acts of the Apostles, addeth these words : Quain Scripturam qui non recipiunt, nec Spiritûs Sancti effe poflunt, qui necdum Spiritum possint agnofcere discentibus miffum ; sed nec Ecclefiam defendere qui quando & quibus incunabulis inftitutum eft hoc corpus, probare non habent. De Prasor. Haret. 6. 22.
Now what we are infallibly assured of the first actual existence of a Church of
Christ is only this: There were twelve Apostles with the Disciples before the Asts 1. 15. descent of the Holy Ghost, and the number of the names together were an bun
dred and twenty. When the Holy Ghost came after a powerful and miraculous
manner upon the blessed Apostles, and S. Peter preached unto the Jews, that Afts 2.38942, they fhould repent and be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the re47.
mission million of fins ; they that gladly received his word were baptized, and the same day there were added unto them about three thousand Pouls. These being thus added to the rest, continued stedfastly in the Apostles doctrine and * Cùm remifellowship, and in breaking of bread, and in prayers : and all these Persons fissent summi
Sacerdotes To continuing are called the * Church. What this Church was is easily determi- Petruin & ned, for it was a certain number of men, of which some were Apostles, fome Joannem, & the former Difciples, others were Persons which repented, and believed, and reverli ellent
4 ad reliquos were baptized in the name of Jesus Christ, and continued hearing the word Coapoftolos preached, receiving the Sacraments administred, joining in the publick Pray- & Difcipulos
Domini, id ers presented unto God. This was then the Church, which was daily in- eft in Ecclew crealed by the addition of other Persons received into it upon the same con- fiam, s. Iren. ditions, making up a the multitude of them that believed, who were o f one l. 3.6. 12.
Ca Alts 4. 32. heart and one foul, b believers added to the Lord, multitudes both of men i Atis : 14: and women
But though the Church was thus begun, and represented unto us as one in the beginning, though that Church which we profess to believe in the Creed be also propounded unto us as one ; and so the notion of the Church in the Acts of the Apostles might seem sufficient to express the nature of that Church which we believe ; yer because that Church which was one by way of tori- + Ha voces gination, and was afterwards divided into many, the actual members of that Ecclefiæ ex one becoming the members of several Churches, and that Church which we qua habuit
omnis Ecclebelieve, is otherwise one by way of complexion, receiving the members of sia initiuin, all Churches into it; it will be necessary to consider, how at the first those S. Iren.ibid. feveral Churches were constituted, that we may understand how in this one Church they were all united. To which purpose it will be farther fit to examine the leveral acceptions of this word, as it is diversly used by the Holy Ghost in the New Testament; that, if it be possible, nothing may escape our search, but that all things may be weighed, before we collect and conclude the full notion of the Church from thence. "
First then, that the word which signifies the Church in the original Greek, is sometimes used in the vulgar sense according as the native Greeks did use the same to express their conventions, without any relation to the worship of God or Christ, and therefore is translated by the word Asembly, a latitude. Secondly, It is sometimes used in the same notion in which the Greek Translators of the Old Testament made use of it, for the Assembly of Acts 19. 32, the people of God under the Law, and therefore might be most fitly tran- 39, 40. fated the Congregation, as it is in the Old Testament. Thirdly, It hath be conceived that even in the Scriptures it is sometimes taken for the place in Heb. 2. 12. which the members of the Church did meet to perform their solemn and publick Services unto God ; and some passages there are which seem to c Acts 11. 26. speak no less, but yet are not so certainly to be understood of the place, but 1 Cor. 11.18, that they may as well be spoken of the People congregated in a certain place. Izom there Beside these few different acceptions, the Church in the language of the New places s. AuTestament doth always signifie a company of Persons professing t
g the Christian gustine did faith, but not always in the same latitude. Sometimes it admitteth of di- 'Eveicim was stinction and plurality : fometimes it reduceth all into conjunction and unity, taken in the Sometimes the Churches of God are diversified as many ; sometimes, as Scriptures for
the place of many as they are, they are all comprehended in one.
the House of God, and came fo to be frequently used in the language of the Christians in his time : Sicut Ecclesia dicitur locus; quo Ecclesia congregatur. Nam Ecclefia homines funt de quibus dicitur, Ut exhiberet sibi gloriofam Ecclefiam. Hanc tamen vocari etiain ipfain domum orationum, idem Apostolus teftis eft, ubi ait, Nunquid domos non habetis ad manducandum er bibendum, an Ecclefiam Dei contemnitis? Et hoc quotidianus loquendi usus obtinuit, ut, ad Ecclesiam prodire, aut ad Ecclesiam confugere, non dicatur, nifi quòd ad locum ipsuin parietesque prodierit, vel confugerit, quibus Ecclefiæ congregatio continetur. Quæft. seper Levit. 1. 3. c. 57. By these words it is certain that in S. Augustine's time they used the word Ecclesia, as we do now the Church, for a place set apart for the Worship of God; and it is also certain that those of the Greek Church did use'Enzanorice in the same sense, as Eusebius speaking of the flourishing Times of the Church, before the Fersecution under Dioclefian, says the Christians unózuws to Tots and oixadouanerin agros pluor oügeács His wher@ civad uous tas utáneas e'x Jepaním cevisan o'xx Anoics, Hift. 1. 8. c. 1. And S. Chryf. Ei gS 'Exxheriav Xxlackcó y cua xaderò
| nvby, or as great
mcvógiou, wordó Márdor væòn trounc luxor, my gS avdgwr enxagoias Cerróteegv. Hom. 26. ad Rom. But it is not focer. tain that the Apostle used 'Exxantia in that sense, nor is it certain tbat there were any Houses fet apart for the Worlbin of God in the Apostlet times, which then could be called by that Name. For Ifidorus Pelusiota exprefly denies it, and distinguishes between innanaise and 'Exxanolesheson, after this manner, "Aaro isiw 'Exrancia sjärde 'Exxanovæskenov, se
και η αμώμων ψυχών Γιωέςηκε, το δ' λ λίθων και ξύλων οικοδομεί 3. And thus he proveth this aitinction, "Ωσπερ ο άλλο εςι θυσιαςήριον και άλλο θυσία, και άλλο θυμιατήρμον άλλο θημίαμα, και άλλο βελογήeιον, και άλλα βολή: το δε τόπο ω ω Γωεδρούκσι μωύς, η 5 τες βελόο μύες άνδρας, οίς και ο κίνδυνως και η Cωτηρία ανήκε, έτω και επί τ8 'Εκκλησιασηρία και
S 'Exranciós. Then he concludes, that in the Apostles times there was no 'Exxanalaskera, 'Eri ve en 'Arosów ÖTE r 'Exκλησία ακόμα και χαρίσμασι πνευματικοίς, έδρυε και πολιτεία, λαμπρά Εκκλησιασήρια εκ ήν. Εpift. 246. 1. 2.
a Afts 16.5. For first in general there are often mentioned a the Churches by way of I Cor. 14. 34. plurality, the Churches of God, the Churches of the Gentiles, the Churches 2 Cor. 8. 19. P
*** 23, 24. Of the Saints. In particular we find a few believers gathered together in the 11.8, 28. House of one single Person, called a * Church, as the Church in the House of
13.6.3. Priscilla and Aquila, the Church in the House of Nymphas, the Church in 1 Inej]. 1.4. the House of Philemon ; which Churches were nothing else but the belie
and baptized Persons of each Family, with such as they admitted and Rom. 16. 4. 1 Cor. 14. 23. received into their House to join in the worship of the same God Thus Origen for the most part speaks of the Church in the plural number ai inxhmoices. * Rom. 16. 5. I Cor. 16. 19. Col. 4. 15. Philem. 2. S. Chrys. obferveth of Priscilla and Aquila, Oőtw gS free oudóximos ais xij m' oixies carancian woonomi, 25 te tő a cív745 Torão sa wise's, rj Al Tð tots Givoss awth avoit au wãow, Chryfoft. Homil. 30. in Epift. ad Romanos.
a Gal. 1. 22. Again, When the Scripture speaketh of any Country where the Gospel had I Cor. 16. 1, DCC eks, 9; 3'; been preached, it nameth always by way of plurality the Churches of that
Country, as the Churches of Judæa, of Samaria and Galilee, the Churches Rev. 1.11. of Syria and of Cilicia, the Churches of Galatia, the Churches of Asia, the I Thell: 2.14. 2 Cor.3. 1.* Churches of Macedonia. But notwithstanding there were several fuch Churches Gal. 1. 2. or Congregations of believers in great and populous Cities, yet the Scrip
tures always speak of such Congregations in the notion of one Church : b1 Cor. 14.34. As when S. Paul wrote to the Corinthians, b Let your Women keep 1 Cor. 1. 2. filence in the Churches; yet the dedication of his Epistle is, Vnto the
"Church of God which is at Corinth. So we read not of the Churches, but * Acts 8.1, 21, the Church at Jerusalem, the Church at Antioch, the Church at Cæfarea,
1.72: the Church at Ephesus, the Church of the Thesalonians, the Church of Lao13. I, 15. 3.18,22. dicea, the Church of Smyrna, the Church of Pergamus, the Church of
20:17. Thyatira, the Church of Sardis, the Church of Philadelphia. From whence 2 Thef. 1.15.2 Col... 16. ' it appeareth that a collection of several Congregations, every one of which Rev. 2. 8, 12, is in some fenfe a Church, and may be called fo, is properly one Church by 18. 3. 15 7, virtue of the subordination of them all in one government under one Ruler. And thus af- For thus in those great and populous Cities where Christians were very nuter they grew merous, not only of several Churches within the Cities, but all those also yet far more numerous in 111 the adjacent
in the adjacent parts, were united under the care and inspection of one Bithe time of shop, and therefore was accounted one Church ; the number of the Churches Clemens following the number of the Angels, that is, the rulers of them, as is eviBijhop of Rome. 'n 'Ex- dent in the revelation. xantic Tð Ofő, • sẹolx8c Paulo mã 'EgAAcid T8 968 8%29:48cm Keyềay, F. I. So after bim Ignatius. ToExacie t tewax eisw tã šono co 'E iow q Arias, and 'Exxandice dvige on con c Tocinero. And for the rest.
Now as feveral Churches are reduced to the denomination of one Church, in relation to the single Governour of those many Churches, fo all the Churches of all Cities and all Nations in the world may be reduced to the fame single denomination in relation to one fupreme Governour of them all, and that one Governour is Christ the Bishop of our Souls. Wherefore the Apoitle speaking of that in which all Churches do agree, comprehenderh them all under the fame appellation of one Church ; and therefore often by the
Name of - Church are understood all Christians whatsoever belonging to any a Mai. 15. 13. of the Churches dispersed through the distant and divided parts of the World. 1 Cor. 12. 25.
55.9. For the single persons professing faith in Christ are members of the particu- Gal. 1.13. lar Churches in which they live, and all those particular Churches are mem- Ephef. 1. 22.
* 3.17, 21, ; bers of the general and universal Church which is one by unity of aggre
: by unity of aggre- 5.23,25,27, gation; and this is the Church in the Creed which we believe, and which 29, 32. is in other Creeds expressly termed * One, I believe in one Holy Catholick Phil. 3. 6.
Col. 1. 18,24, Church.
Heb. 12. 23.
of this, as of one Church, Celsus calls the Christians, tas dod meydans inxàncies. Apud. Orig. l. 5. * So the Creeds of Epiphanius in Ancorato, wisscores ris reicev civic Kalonzls 'ATosohirlw 'Exxanciar. So the Jerusalem Creed in S. Cyril. Th..s the Nicene, with the additions of the Council of Conftantinople, μίαν αγίαν Καθολικω κ 'Aποςολικω Εκκλησίαν. Thus also the Alexandrian, as appeareth by those already quoted of Alexander, Arius and Euzoius.
It will therefore be farther necessary for the understanding of the nature of the Church which is thus one, to consider in what that unity doth consist. And being it is an aggregation not only of many Perlons, but also of Congregations, the unity thereof must consist in some agreement of them all, and adhesion to something which is one. If then we reflect upon the first Church again, which we found constituted in the Acts, and to which all other since have been in a manner added and conjoined, we may collect from their union and agreement how all other Churches are united and agree. Now they were described to be believing and baptized Persons, converted to the Faith' by S. Peter, continuing stedfastly in the Apostles Doctrine and Fellowship, and in breaking of Bread, and Prayers. These then were all built upon the fame Rock, all professed the fame Faith, all received the fame Sacraments, all performed the fame Devotions, and thereby were all reputed Members of the fame Church. To this Church were added daily such as Afis 2. 41,42, should be saved, who became Members of the same Church by being built 44,47 upon the fame Foundation, by adhering to the same Doctrine, by receiving the fame Sacraments, by performing the same Devotions.
From whence it appeareth that the first unity of the Church considered in it self, beside that of the head, which is one Christ, and the life commu-'. nicated from that head, which is one Spirit, relieth upon the original of it, which is one ; even as an house built upon one foundation), though confisting of many rooms, and every room of many stones, is not yet many, but one house. Now there is but one foundation upon which the Church is built, and that is Chrift: For other foundation can no man lay, than that i cor. z. ir. is laid, which is Jesus Christ. And though the Apostles and the Prophets be also termed the foundation, yet even then the unity is preferved, because as they are stones in the foundation, fo are they united by one corner-stone; whereby it comes to pass that such Persons as are of the Church, being fellow-citizens with the Saints, and of the houshold of God, are built up- Esbel, 2. 10, on the foundation of the Apostles and Prophets, Jesus Christ himself being 20,21. the chief corner-stone , in whom all the building fitly framed together, groweth unto a boly Temple in the Lord. This stone was laid in Zion for á Isa. 28. 16. foundation, a tried stone, a precious corner-stone, a fure foundation : there was the first Church built, and whosoever have been, or ever shall be converted to the true Christian Faith, are and shall be added to that Church, and laid upon the same foundation, which is the unity of * origination.
; * Tertullian Our Saviour gave the same power to all the Apostles, which was to found speaking of the the Church; but he gave that power to Peter, to shew the unity of the fame Apostle Church.
.. ', civitatem -condiderunt, à quibus traducem fidei & feipfam doctrinæ cæteræ exinde Ecclefiæ mutuatæ funt, & quotidie mutuantur, ut Ecclesiæ fiant: ac per hoc & ipfæ Apoftolicæ, ut foboles Apoftolicaruin Ecclesiarum, Omne genus ad originem suain cenfeatur neceffe eft. Itaque tot & tantæ Ecclefiæ una est illa ab Apoftolis prima ex qua omnes. Sic omhes primæ & Apoftolicæ, dum unà omnes, probant unitatem : dum eft illis communicatio pacis, & appellatio frater
nitatis, & contefferatio hospitalitatis: quæ jura non alia ratio regit quàm ejusdem Sacramenti una traditio. De Prefeript. Haret. 6. 20. This is the Unitas originis which s. Cyprian so much in fifts upon, Ecclefia una eft quæ in multitudinem latiùs incremento fæcunditatis extenditur; quomodo Solis multi radii, sed lumen unum ; & rami arboris multi, sed robur unum tenaci radice fundatum. Et cum de fonte uno rivi plurimi defluunt, numerolitas licèt diffusa videatur exundantis copiæ largitate, unitas tamen servatur in origine, c. S. Cypr. de Unitate Eccl. Loquitur Dominus ad Petrum. Ego tibi dico, inquit, quia tu es Petrus, er super iftam Petram adificabo Ecclefiam meam, &c. Et idem poft resurrectionem suam dicit, Pasce oves meas. Et quamvis Apoftolis omnibus poft resurrectionem fuam parem poteftatem tribuat, & dicai, Sicut misit me Pater, & ego mitto vos, &c. tamen ut unitatem inanifeftaret, unitatis ejusdem originem ab uno incipientem fuã authoritate disposuit. Hoc erant utique & cæteri Apostoli, quod fuit Petrus, pari consortio præditi, & honoris & poteftatis, fed exordium ab unitate proficiscitur, ut Ecclesia una monftretur. ibid. 'Eros va tã Oið, e évos tő Kúers, dice rĞ TO Bej so drews Tiptov se o pórwow it ouve], piunuce or agzins al mesãs. Clem. Alex. Stromat. 1.7. This is very much to be observed, because that place of S. Cyprian is produced by the Romanists to prove the necessity of one head of the Church upon Earth, and to Mew that the Bishop of Rome is that one head by virtue of his succession to S. Peter; whereas S. Cyprian speaketh nothing of any such one head, nor of any such succeffion, but only of the origination of the Church, which was so disposed by Chrift, that the unity might be expressed. For whereas all the rest of the Apostles had equal power and honour with s. Peter, yet Chrift did particularly give that power to S. Peter, to shew the unity of the Church which he intended to build upon the foundation of the Apostles. :
Secondly, The Church is therefore one, though the Members be many, Ephef. 4. 5. because they all agree in one Faith. There is one Lord, and one Faith, and Jude 3. thar Faith'once delivered to the Saints, which whosoever shall receive, em
brace, and profess, muft necessarily be accounted one in reference to that profession. For if a company of believers become a Church by believing they must also become one Church by believing one truth. If they be one in respect of the foundation, which is ultimately one ; if we look upon Christ, which is mediately one ; if we look upon the Apostles united in one corner-stone ;. if those which believe be therefore said to be built upon the foundation of the Apostles, because they believe the Doctrine which the Apostles preached, and the Apostles be therefore said to be of the fame foundation, and united to the corner-stone, because they all taught the fame Doctrine which they received from Christ ; then they which I
fame Doctrine delivered by Christ to all the Apostles, delivered by all the A. of this doth postles to believers, being all professors of the fame Faith, must be members of Speak, deli- the fame Church. And this is the * unity of Faith. vering the Sum or brief abstract of the material object of Faith, Tò xágufusa sapuanoyd, og', zouth wisu ij 'ExxAnoia xamię úr örg τον κόσμο διεσ αργη επιμελώς φυλάσα, ως ένα οίκον οικέσα, και ομοίως πισδύα τέτοις, ως μίαν ψυχίω και τ' αυτώ έκθσ xapdiar, ag cur paws TGŪTH yngúan, ej dodácket rj a didwory wig en sóc xex7mpestón. Advers. Hær. l. 1. Kalá te šv σασιν, καλά τε επίνοιαν, καλά τι άρχω, κατά τε εξοχή μόνω είναι φαν τ' αρχαίας και Καθολικω Εκκλησίαν εις ενότητα πίσεως μιάς της τας ιδίας διαθήκας, μάλλον και τη διαθήκω τ μίαν διαφόρους τους χρόνους, ενός τ8 Θε8 το βελούμαι, δι ενός Tä Kueis (uályo ay to's ñdn xu70707 a felfúss, ós tegaerrey • Odos, diraids ecopelers weg xa7d60añs xórus élvonais. Clem. Alex. Stromat. 1.7. This unity of Faith followeth the unity of Origination, because the true Faith is the true Foundation. Siqua eft Ecclesia quæ fidem refpuat, nec Apoftolicæ prædicationis fundamenta pofsideat, deferenda eft, Petra tua Christus eft. S. Amb. in Luc. lib. 2. cap. 9. 'H gs (wéx8006 ml 'Exxanalar, as Onein • Dospino, ágiten j wisis isis, Clem. Alex. Stromat. I. 2. S. Jerom on those words of the Psalm 23. II. Hæc eft generatio quærentium Dominum, bath this observation : Superiùs fingulariter dixit, Hic accipiet benedictionem; modò pluraliter, quia Ecclefia ex pluribus personis congregatur, & tamen una dicitur propter unitatem fidei.
· Thirdly, Many Persons and Churches, howsoever distinguished by time or place, are considered as one Church, because they acknowledge and receive the same Sacraments, the signs and badges of the People of God.
When the Apostles were sent to found and build the Church, they received Mat.28.10. this Commission, Go and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of
the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost. Now as there is but Ephes. 4.4. one Lord, and one Faith, so also there is but one Baptism; and conse
quently they which are admitted to it, in receiving it are one. Again, At the Institution of the Lord's Supper Christ commanded, saying, Eat ye all of
this, drink ye all of this ; and all by communicating of one, become as to 1 Cor. 10. 17. that communication one. For we being many are one bread, and one body; 1 Cor. 10. 2. for we are all partakers of that one bread. As therefore the Ifraelites were
all baptized unto Mofes in the cloud and in the sea, and did all eat the same spiritual meat, and did all drink the same spiritual drink, and thereby appeared to be the one People of God; fo all believing Persons, and all Churches con