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there of infants, seeing in propriety of speech (as St. Augustine himself teacheth us, Ep. xxiii.) infants were not fideles, of whom St. Augustine in that supposed sermon speaks. Secondly, admit he does speak of infants, where he assures us, that in baptism every faithful man is made partaker of Christ's body and blood, and that he shall not be alienated from the benefit of the bread and cup, although he depart this life before he eat of that bread and drink of that cup: all this concludes no more, but that the actual participation of the eucharist is not a means simply necessary to attain salvation, so that no impossibility shall excuse the failing of it; whereas all that I aim at is but this-that in the judgment of the ancient church it was believed necessary, in case of possibility; necessary, not in actu, but in voto ecclesia; not necessary to salvation simply, but necessary for the increase of grace and glory: and therefore, lastly, though not necessary by necessity of means, for infants to receive it; yet necessary by necessity of precepts, for the church to give it.
The last witness I promised, was the author of the work against the Pelagians, called Hypognostica, who (1. v. c. 5.) asks the Pelagians, "Seeing he himself hath said, Unless you eat the flesh, &c. how dare you promise eternal life to little children, not regenerate of water and the Holy Ghost; not having eaten his flesh, nor drunk his blood?" And, a little after: "Behold then, he that is not baptized, and he that is destitute of the bread and cup of life, is separated from the kingdom of heaven."
To the same purpose he speaks, 1. vi. c. 6. But
it is superfluous to recite his words; for either this is enough, or nothing.
The third kind of proof, whereby I undertook to shew the belief of the ancient church in this point, was the confession of the learnedest writers and best versed in the church of Rome; who, what the counsel of Trent forbids under anathema, that any man should say of any ancient father, are not yet afraid, nor make any scruple to say it in plain terms of the whole church for many ages together, viz. that she believed the eucharist necessary for infants. So doth Maldonate in Joan. vi. Mitto Augustini et Innocentii sententiam (quæ etiam viguit in ecclesia per sexcentos annos) eucharistiam etiam infantibus necessarium. "I say nothing (says he) of St. Augustine's and Innocentius's opinion, that the eucharist was necessary even for infants; which doctrine flourished in the church for six hundred years."
The same almost in terms hath Binnius, in his Notes on the Councils, p. 624. Hinc constat Innocentii sententia (quæ sexcentos circiter annos viguit in ecclesia, quam Augustinus sectatus est) eucharistiam etiam infantibus necessariam fuisse.
Lastly, That treasury of antiquity, Cardinal Perron, though he speaks not so home as the rest do, yet he says enough for my purpose. Des Passages de S. Aug. c. 10. p. 101. "The custom of giving the eucharist to infants the church then observed as profitable." This, I say, is enough for my purpose: for what more contradictious, than that the eucharist, being the same without alteration, to infants should then be profitable, and now unprofitable? Then, all things considered, expedient to be used, if not necessary, and therefore commanded; and
now, though there be no variety in the case, all things considered, not necessary, nor expedient, and therefore forbidden?
The issue of all this discourse, for aught I can see, must be this: That either both parts of a contradiction must be true, and consequently nothing can be false, seeing that which contradicts truth, is not so; or else, that the ancient church did err in believing something expedient, which was not so (and, if so, why may not the present church err in thinking Latin service and communion in one kind expedient?) or that the present church doth err, in thinking something not expedient, which is so. And, if so, why may she not err, in thinking communicating the laity in both kinds, and service in vulgar languages, not expedient?
V.-An Argument drawn from the doctrine of the Millenaries against Infallibility.
THE doctrine of the millenaries was, That before the world's end Christ should reign upon earth for a thousand years, and that the saints should live under him in all holiness and happiness. That this doctrine is by the present Roman church held false and heretical, I think no man will deny.
That the same doctrine was by the church of the next age after the apostles held true and catholic, I prove by these two reasons:
The first reason. Whatsoever doctrine is believed and taught by the most eminent fathers of any age of the church, and by none of their contemporaries opposed or condemned, that is to be esteemed the catholic doctrine of the church of those times; but the doctrine of the millenaries was believed and taught by the most eminent fathers of the age next after the apostles, and by none of that age opposed or condemned; therefore it was the catholic doctrine of the church of those times.
The proposition of this syllogism is Cardinal Perron's rule (in his Epistle to Casaubon, 5. obs.) and is indeed one of the main pillars, upon which the great fabric of his answer to King James doth stand, and with which it cannot but fall; and therefore I will spend no time in the proof of it.
But the presumption thus I prove.
That doctrine, which was believed and taught
by Papias, bishop of Hierapolis, the disciple of the apostles' disciples (according to Eusebius) who lived in the times of the apostles, saith he; by Justin Martyr, doctor of the church, and Martyr; by Melito, bishop of Sardis, who had the gift of prophecy, witness Tert. and whom Bellarmine acknowledges a saint; by St. Iræneus, bishop of Lyons, and martyr; and was not opposed or condemned by any one doctor of the church of those times; that doctrine was believed and taught by the most eminent fathers of that age next to the apostles, and opposed by none:
But the former part of the proposition is true; ergo, the latter is true also.
The major of this syllogism, and the latter part of the minor, I suppose will need no proof with them that consider, that these here mentioned were equal in number to all the other ecclesiastical writers of that age, of whom there is any memory remaining, and in weight and worth infinitely beyond them: they were Athenagoras, Theophilus Antiochenus, Egesippus, and Hippolitus; of whose contradiction to this doctrine there is not extant, either in their works, or in story, any print or footstep; which if they, or any of them, had opposed, it had been impossible, considering the ecclesiastical story of their time is written by the professed enemies of the millenaries' doctrine, who, could they have found any thing in the monuments of antiquity to have put in balance against Justin Martyr and Irenæus, no doubt would not have buried it in silence; which yet they do, neither vouching for their opinion any one of more antiquity than Dionysius Alexandrinus, who lived, saith Eusebius, nostra ætate (in our age) but cer