religious by those ordinances of civil power, from which Christ their head hath discharged us; “ blotting out the hand writing of ordinances that was against us, which was contrary to us; and took it out of the way, nailing it to his cross,” ver. 14. Blotting out ordinances written by God himself, much more those fo boldly written over again by men : ordinances which were against us, that is, against our frailty, much more those which are against our conscience. “Let no man therefore judge you in respect of, &c.” v, 16; Gal. iv, 3, &c., “ Even fo we, when we were children, were in bondage under the rudiments of the world : But when the fulness of time was come, God sent forth his son, &c. to redeem them that were under the law, that we might receive the adoption of fons, &c. Wherefore thou art no more a servant, but a fon, &c. But now, &c. how turn ye again to the weak and beggarly rudiments, whereunto ye desire again to be in bondage? Ye observe days, &c.” Hence it plainly appears, that if we be not free, we are not fons, but still servants unadopted; and if we 'turn again to those weak and beggarly rudiments, we are not free; yea, though willingly, and with a misguided ccnscience, we desire to be in bondage to them; how much more then if unwillingly and againft our conscience? Ill was our condition changed from legal to evangelical, and finall advantage gotten by the gospel, if for the spirit of adoption to freedom promised us, we receive again the fpirit of bondage to fear; if our fear, which was then servile towards God only, must be now servile in religon towards men : ftrange also and preposterous fear, if when and wherein it hath attained by the redemption of our Saviour to be filial only towards God, it must be now servile towards the magistrate : who, by subjecting us to his punithment in these things, brings back into religion that law of terrour and satisfaction belonging now only to civil crimes; and thereby in effect abolithes the gofpel, by establishing again the law to a far worse yoke of servitude upon us than before. It will therefore not milbecome the meanest christian to put in mind christian magistrates, and so much the more freely by how much the more they desire to be thought christian, (for they

liberty, which aggravation, berpirit, and by

will be thereby, as they ought to be in these things, the more our brethren and the less our Lords) that they meddle not rafhly with christian liberty, the birthright and outward testimony of our adoption; left while they little think it, nay, think they do God service, they themselves, like the fons of that bondwoman, be found perfecuting them who are freeborn of the fpirit, and by a facrilege of not the least aggravation, bereaving them of that facred liberty, which our faviour with his own blood purchased for them.

A fourth reason, why the magistrate ought not to use force in religion, I bring from the confideration of all those ends, which he can likely pretend to the interpofing of his force therein : and those hardly can be other than first the glory of God; next, either the spiritual good of them whom he forces, or the temporal punishment of their scandal to others. As for the promoting of God's glory, none, I think, will say that his glory ought to be promoted in religious things by unwarrantable means, much less by means contrary to what he hath commanded. That outward force is luch, and that God's glory in the whole adminiftration of the gospel according to his own will and counsel ought to be fulfilled by weakness, at least fo refuted, not by force; or if by force, inward and spiritual, not outward and corporeal, is already proved at large. That outward force cannot tend to the good of him who is forced in religion, is unquestionable. For in religion whatever we do under the gospel, we ought to be thereof persuaded without fcruple; and are justified by the faith we have, not by the work we do: Rom. xiv, 5, “Let every man be fully persuaded in his own mind.” The other reason which follows necessarily, is obvious, Gal. ii, 16, and in' many other places of St. Paul, as the groundwork and foundation of the whole gospel, that we are “ justified by the faith of Christ, and not by the works of the law.” If not by the works of God's law, how then by the injunctions of man's law? Surely force cannot work perfuasion, which is faith ; cannot therefore juftify nor pacify the conscience; and that which justifies not in the gospel, condemns; is not only not good, but finful to

not by the man's law? Sunnot therefore

242 A Tri xiv, 23. iftrate the

left by waded,

342 A Treatise of Civil Power in Ecclesiastical Causes. do: Rom. xiv, 23, “Whatsoever is not of faith, is fin." It concerns the magistrate then to take heed how he forces in religion conscientious men : lest by compelling them to do that whereof they cannot be persuaded, that wherein they cannot find themselves justified, but by their own consciences condemned, instead of aiming at their spiritual good, he force them to do evil; and while he thinks himself Ala, Jofiah, Nehemiah, he be found Jeroboam, who caused Ifrael to sin; and thereby draw upon his own head all those fins and shipwrecks of implicit faith and conformity, which he hath forced, and all the wounds given to those little ones, whom to offend he will find worse one day than that violent drowning mentioned Mat. xviii, 6. Lastly, as a preface to force, it is the usual pretence, That although tender consciences shall be tolerated, yet scandals thereby given shall not be unpunished, prophane and licentious men shall not be encouraged, to neglect the performance of religious and holy duties by colour of any law giving liberty to tender consciences. By which contrivance the way lies ready open to them hereafter, who may be so minded, to take away by little and little that liberty which Christ and his gospel, not any magistrate, hath right to give : though this kind of his giving be but to give with one hand, and take away with the other, which is a deluding not a giving. As for scandals, if any man be offended at the conicientious liberty of another, it is a taken scandal, not a given. To heal one conscience, we must not wound another : and men muft be exhorted to beware of scandals in chriftian liberty, not forced by the magistrate; left while he goes about to take away the scandal, which is uncertain whether given or taken, he take away our liberty, which is the certain and the sacred gift of God, neither to be touched by him, nor to be parted with by us. None more cautious of giving scandal than St. Paul. Yet while he made himfelf “ Servant to all,” that he “might gain the more,” he made himself fo of his own accord, was not made so by outward force, testifying at the same time that he “ was free from all men,” i Cor. ix, 19; and thereafter exhorts us also, Gal. v, 13, “Ye were called to liberty, &c. but by love ferve one another :


then not by force. As for that fear, left prophane and licentious men should be encouraged to omit the performance of religious and holy duties, how can that care belong to the civil magistrate, especially to his force? For if prophane and licentious persons must not neglect the performance of religious and holy duties, it implies, that fuch duties they can perform, which no protestant will affirm. They who mean the outward performance, may fo explain it; and it will then appear yet more plainly, that such performance of religious and holy duties, elpecially by prophane and licentio'ls persons, is a dishonouring rather than a worshipping of God; and not only by him not required, but detefted : Prov. xxi, 27, “The sacrifice of the wicked is an abomination; how much more when he bringeth it with a wicked mind?” To compel therefore the prophane to things holy in his pro-, phaneness, is all one under the gospel, as to have compelled the uncle un to sacrifice in his uncleanness under the law. And I add withal, that to compel the licentious. in his licentiousness, and the conscientious against his conscience, comès all to one; tends not to the honour of God, but to the multiplying and the aggravating of fin to them both. We read not that Christ ever exercised force but once; and that was to drive prophane ones out of his temple, not to force them in: and if their being there was an offence, we find by many other fcriptures that their praying there was an abomination : and yet to the Jewish law that nation, as a servant, was obliged; but to the gospel each person is left voluntary, calleil only, as a lon, by the preaching of the word; not to be driven in by edicts and force of arms. For if by the apostle, Rom. xii, 1, we are “beseeched as brethren by the mercies of God to present our bodies a living facrifice, holy, acceptable to God, which is our reasonable service” or worship, then is no man to be forced by the compulfive laws of men to present his body a dead facrifice; and so under the gofpel most unholy and unacceptable, because it is his unreasonable service, that is to say, not only unwilling but unconscionable. But if prophane and licentious perfons may not omit the performance of holy duties, why may they not partake of holy things? Why are they pro



hibited the Lord's fupper, since both the one and the other action may be outward; and outward performance of duty may attain at least an outward participation of benefit? The church denying them that communion of grace and thanksgiving, as it juftly doth, why doth the magistrate compel them to the union of performing that which they neither truly can, being themselves unholy, and to do seemingly is both hateful to God, and perhaps no less dangerous to perform holy duties irreligiously, than to receive holy signs or facraments unworthily? All prophane and licentious men, fo known, can be considered but either fo without the church as never yet within it, or departed thence of their own accord, or excommunicațe : if never yet within the church, whom the apostle, and fo confequently the church, have nought to do to judge, as he professes, 1 Cor. V, 12, then by what authority doth the magistrate judge; or, which is worse, compel in relation to the church? If departed of his own accord, like that loft sheep, Luke xv, 4, &c. the true church either with her own or any borrowed force worries him not in again, but rather in all charitable manner sends after him; and if she find him, lays him gently on her shoulders; bears him, yea bears his burdens, his errours, his infirmities any way tolerable, “fo fulfilling the law of Christ,” Gal. vi, 2. If excommunicate, whom the church hath bid go out, in whose name doth the magiftrate compel to go in? The church indeed hinders none from hearing in her public congregation, for the doors are open to all: nor excommunicates to destruction; but, as much as in her lies, to a final saving. Her meaning therefore must needs be, that as her driving out brings on no outward penalty, so no outward force or penalty of an improper and only a destructive power should drive in again her infectious sheep; therefore sent out because infectious, and not driven in but with the danger not only of the whole and sound, but also of his own utter perishing. Since force neither instructs in religion, nor be. gets repentance or amendment of life, but on the contrary, hardness of heart, formality, hypocrisy, and, as I said before, every way increase of fin; more and more alienates the mind from a violent religion, expelling out and com


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