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Brulifer, who maintained, "that no act of grace, how good soever, was worthy of eternal life.”

Paulus Burgensis, though he is said to have been converted from being a Jew, by reading Aquinas, yet utterly dissented from him in this matter: for he saith, that no man can, by the ordinary assistance of grace, merit eternal life ex condigno, and therefore the mercy of God is most seen in heaven.

However the reputation of Aquinas might gain upon some, yet this was very far then from being a catholic tradition.

But no council ever interposed its authority in this matter till the council of Trent, which resolved to carry the points in difference to the height, and to establish every thing that was questioned. Nothing had been more easy than to have given satisfaction in this matter, considering what Pighius and Contarenus, and even Genebrard, had yielded in it; but there the rule was, that every thing that was disputed must be determined first, and then defended.

And so it hath happened with this decree, which, lest we should think the matter capable of softening, hath been since asserted in the highest manner. Bellarmine asserts good

works of themselves, and not merely by compact, to be meritorious of eternal life, so that in them there is a certain proportion and equality to eternal life.

Costerus saith ", " that in works of grace, there is an equality between the work and the reward."

Suarez, "that they have an intrinsical dignity, whereby they become worthy of eternal life."

Vasquez y, "that there is an equality of dignity between good works and eternal life, without which a promise could not make true merit."

The Rhemists say 7, "that good works are truly and properly meritorious, and justly worthy of everlasting life; and that thereupon heaven is the just due and just stipend, crown or recompense, which God by his justice oweth to the persons so doing by his grace."

And again, "that good works are meritorious, and the very

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cause of salvation, so far that God should be unjust if he rendered not heaven for the same a."

Ph. Gamachæus, a late professor of divinity in the Sorbonne, speaks it roundly, " that the council of Trent did plainly mean to establish merit ex condigno, and that all catholics are agreed in it."

The last defender of the council of Trent within these few years, saith," that there is an intrinsical condignity in good works, whereby they bear a proportion commensurate with the glory of heaven. And without such doctrine as this, he doth not think the council of Trent can be defended in this matterc."

If, after all, it be said, that this is a mere subtlety concerning the proportion an act of grace bears to the state of glory; I answer, the more to blame they who have made and imposed it as a matter of faith, as the council of Trent has done with an anathema, and that without any pretence from catholic tradition.

But what made the council of Trent so much concerned for a scholastic subtlety? There was a deep mystery lay in this; they were wise enough to frame the decree so as to avoid offence, and to make it appear plausible, but it was enough to the people to understand that the merit of good works was allowed, and they were to believe the priests, both as to the good works they were to do, and as to the putting them into a state of grace, to make them capable of meriting. And this was the true reason of the anathema against those who should deny the true merit of good works.

a On Heb. vi. 8.

b Gamach, in 1. 2. Th. Q. 114. c. 2. Concil. 2. Omnes catholici fatentur justos suis bonis operibus mereri glo

riam de condigno.

c Aug. Reding Defens. Conc. Trident. tr. 4. sect. 2. ad sess. 6. c. 1.











THE author of a book newly published, called, “The Agreement between the Church of England and Church of Rome," saith, "a There has been of late a great cry that the clergy of the church of England are now the chief, if not the only opposers of popery, and defenders of the protestant religion:" and therefore, "to put a check to the insulting talk of our clergy, (who would be thought the only champions against popery,) it is become necessary in the present juncture to emit such an essay as this," to shew an agreement between the church of England and Rome; and "that the controversy lies only between the church of Rome and the protestant dissenter." This, I confess, is an expedient of expedients, and as it is necessary for the relief of those who are so successfully beaten out of their late pleas of misrepresentation, that they sullenly declare, "buntil that be yielded, they will not dispute:" so it may be "necessary in this present juncture," for the charming that adder, which has yet been deaf to all the arguments of flattery, interest, and fear; and to put an end to that answera Preface to the Agreement. b Page 1.

ing, replying, rejoining, and sur-rejoining, which for some months, he saith, both sides have been employed in. For if there be an agreement in opinion between both churches, there will be no further occasion for disputing between them; and if "the only opposers of popery," the clergy of the church of England, are convinced of it, there will be no further disputing nor opposition; since those between whom the controversy then only lies, viz. the church of Rome and protestant dissenter, are, it seems, upon terms of mutual cessation.

But now, lest those of the church of England, that after all the complaints made against them for misrepresentation, will not grant any such thing properly, and in a strict sense, (and it is likely not in any sense,) should be as obstinate and hard to. be convinced in this case; therefore to put it out of dispute, (if he be to be credited,) he has with some clearness demonstrated the agreement of opinion between the church of England and Rome to be exact and full. And if demonstration and clearness of demonstration will not do it, nothing will. But it is some men's way to talk most of infallibility, self-evidence, and clearness of demonstration, when they are furthest from it; and I began presently to suspect our author's credit, when I found him to shift his ground, as if he did distrust his own demonstrations.

As for instance,

1. He had no sooner begun to demonstrate this exact and full agreement of opinion, but by way of prevention, he declares, "dHe would not incumber his discourse with a catalogue of agreements in the great doctrines of Christian religion, and matters of opinion, but would confine himself to matters of government and worship, which chiefly concern men's practices." How! demonstrate the agreement of opinion, and yet forbear meddling with matters of opinion! to undertake it, and then to except the thing he undertakes! and then to confine himself to matters of government and worship, as if there were not as much reason to shew an agreement in doctrine as practice; or that matters of government and worship were not also matters of doctrine!

2. When he seems to come to the point he confines himself to, viz. government and worship, yet he fails again, for it is

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only in some parts of worship, which he ventures to say that the agreement will be found exact and full. As one sensible that though there is nothing in the Liturgy and prayers of the church of England, (which he instances in,) as to the matter of them, but what every Christian may allow, and so what the pope may as well as (he saith f) " did approve;" yet, that their Missal and Breviary contain such prayers to the saints, and for souls departed, &c. as can be by no other figure made to agree with the worship and prayers used in the church of England, than one part of a contradiction can be reconciled to the other.

3. It is further worthy of our observation, that the agreement he pretends to prove is not from the avowed doctrine of either church, but by some quotations he produces from two or three particular authors, on the part of the church of England; and from such as on their own side are rejected by the 8 governing part of their church. So for instance, he saith of the church of England, "They are the avowed principles of some of the clergy and late writers." And when he undertakes for the Romish church, he tells us, hthat "a great, if not the greatest part, grant to the pope but a primacy, for the sake of catholic concord," &c. For proof of which he appeals to the councils of Constance and Basil, and the privileges of the Gallican church. And yet the acts of those councils were reprobated in succeeding councils; and so far as concerns this case, were utterly disallowed, as Bellarmine saith. And of what little authority the Gallic privileges have been accounted at Rome, there needs no more evidence than the case of De Marcak, as it is represented by this author. So that let his quotations (which he pretends to be very just in) be admitted; yet his argument from thence, for an exact and full agreement as to this matter, amounts to this only: Some of the church of England are for a primacy for concord sake, and some of the church of Rome are for no more; therefore the agreement betwixt the church of England and Rome is very exact and full in those points. And if this be his way of demonstration, it might to as good purpose be shewed, that there is also in

e Page 3.
f Page 60.

g Preface.

h Page 16. 18. 30, 31.
i De Concil. l. 1. c. 7.
k Page 22, &c.

1 Preface.

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