« PreviousContinue »
Hæc doctrina de fide ubique This doctrine of faith is handled in Paulo tractatur (Eph. ii. 8): by Paul almost every where: ' By Gratia salvi facti estis per fidem, grace ye are saved through faith, et hoc non ex vobis, Dei donum and that not of yourselves: it is the est, non ex operibus, etc. Et ne gift of God, not of works' (Eph. quis cavilletur, a nobis novam ii. 8,9). And lest any here should Parli interpretationem excogi- cavil, that we bring in a new-found tari, tota hæc causa habet testi- interpretation, this whole cause is monia Patrum. Nam Augusti- sustained by testimonies of the Fanus multis voluminibus defendit thers. Augustine doth in many volgratiam et justitiam fidei contra umes defend grace, and the rightmerita operum. Et similia do- eousness of faith, against the merit cet Ambrosius de vocatione gen- of works. The like doth Ambrose tium, et alibi. Sic enim inquit teach in his book, De Vocatione de vocatione gentium : Vilesce- Gentium, and elsewhere; for thus ret redemptio sanguinis Christi, he saith of the calling of the Gennec misericordiæ Dei humano- tiles: “The redemption made by the rum operum prærogativa suc- blood of Christ would be of small cumberet, si justificatio, quæ fit account, and the prerogative of per gratiam, meritis præcedenti- man's works would not give place óus deberetur, ut non munus lar- to the mercy of God, if the justifigientis, sed merces esset operan- cation which is by grace were due tis.
to merits going before; so as it should not be the liberality of the giver, but the wages or hire of the
laborer.' Quanquam autem hæc doctrina This doctrine, though it be concontemnitur ab imperitis, tamen temned of the unskillful, yet godly experiuntur piæ ac pavidæ con- and fearful consciences find by exscientiæ, plurimum eam consola-perience that it bringeth very great tionis afferre, quia conscientice comfort: because that consciences non possunt reddi tranquillæ per can not be quieted by any works, ulla opera, sed tantum fide, cum but by faith alone, when they be. certo statuunt, quod propter Chri- lieve assuredly that they have a God stum habeant placatum Deum; who is propitiated for Christ's sake; quemadmodum Paulus docet as St. Paul teacheth, ‘Being justified
(Rom. v. 1): Justificati per fidem, by faith, we have peace with God' pacem habemus apud Deum. To- (Rom. v. 1). This doctrine doth ta hiec doctrina ad illud certa- wholly belong to the conflict of a men perterrefactæ conscientiæ re- troubled conscience; and can not ferenda est, nec sine illo certa- be understood, but where the conmine intelligi potest. Quare male science bath felt that conflict. judicant de ea re homines impe- Wherefore, all such as have had riti et prophani, qui Christia- no experience thereof, and all that nam justitiam nihil esse somni- are profane men, who dream that ant, nisi civilem et philosophi- Christian righteousness is naught cam justitiam.
else but a civil and philosophical righteousness, are poor judges of
this matter. Olim vexabantur conscientiæ Formerly men's consciences were doctrina operum,
audie- vexed with the doctrine of works; bant ex Evangelio consolationem. they did not hear any comfort out Quosdam conscientia expulit in of the Gospel. Whereupon condesertum, in monasteria, spe- science drove some into the desert, rantes ibi se gratiain merituros into monasteries, hoping there to esse per vitam monasticam. Alii merit grace by a monastical life. alia excogitaverunt opera al pro- Others devised other works, wheremerendam gratiam et satisfaci- by to merit grace, and to satisfy for endum pro peccatis. Ideo ma- sin. There was very great need, gnopere fuit opus, hanc doctri- therefore, to teach and renew this nam de fide in Christum tradere doctrine of faith in Christ; to the et renovare, ne deesset consolatio end that fearful consciences ght pavidis conscientiis, sed scirent not want comfort, but might know fide in Christum apprehendi that grace, and forgiveness of sins, gratiam et remissionem peccato- and justification, are received by rum et justificationem.
faith in Christ. Admonentur etiam homines, Another thing, which we teach quod hic nomen fidei non signi- men, is that in this place the name ficet tantum historiæ notitiam, of Faith doth not only signify a qualis est in impiis et diabolo, knowledge of the history, which sed significet fidem, quæ credit may be in the wicked, and in the non tantum historiam, sed etiam devil, but that it signifieth a faith
effectum historiæ, videlicet hunc which believeth, not only the hisarticulum, remissionem peccato- tory, but also the effect of the hisrum, quod videlicet per Chri- tory; to wit, the article of remisstum habeamus gratiam, justi- sion of sins; nainely, that by Christ tiam et remissionem peccatorum. we have grace, righteousness, and Jam qui scit, se per Christum remission of sins. Now he that habere propitium Patrem, is knoweth that he hath the Father vere novit Deum, scit, se ei curæ merciful to himn through Christ, esse, invocat eum; denique non this man knoweth God truly; he est sine Deo, sicut gentes. Nam knoweth that God hath a care of diaboli et impii non possunt him; he loveth God, and calleth hunc articulum credere, remis- upon him; in a word, he is not sionem peccatorum. Ideo Deum without God, as the Gentiles are. tanquam hostem oderunt, non in. For the devils and the wicked can vocant eum, nihil boni ab eo ex- never believe this article of the repectant. Augustinus etiam de mission of sins; and therefore they fidei nomine hoc modo admonet hate God as their enemy; they call lectorem et docet, in Scripturis not upon him, they look for no good nomen fidei accipi, non pro no- thing at his hands. After this mantitia, qualis est in impiis, sed ner doth Augustine admonish the pro fiducia, quæ consolatur et reader touching the name of Faith, erigit perterrefactas mentes. and teacheth that this word Faith
is taken in Scriptures, not for such a knowledge as is in the wicked, but for a trust, which doth comfort
and lift up disquieted minds. Præterea docent nostri, quod Moreover, ours teach that it is necesse sit bona opera facere, necessary to do good works; not non ut confidamus per ea gra- that we may trust that we deserve tiam mereri, sed propter volun- grace by them, but because it is tatem Dei. Tantum fide appre- the will of God that we should do henditur remissio peccatorum ac them. By faith alone is appregratia. Et quia per fidem accipi- hended remission of sins and
grace. tur Spiritus Sanctus, jam corda And because the Holy Spirit is rerenovantur et induunt novos ceived by faith, our hearts are now affectus, ut parere bona opera renewed, and so put on new affec. possint. Sic enim ait Ambro- tions, so that they are able to bring sius : Fides bonce voluntatis et forth good works. For thus saith justæ actionis genitrix est. Ambrose: 'Faith is the begetter of Nam humanæ vires, sine Spi- a good will and of good actions.' ritu Sancto, plenæ sunt impiis For man's powers, without the Holy affectibus, et sunt imbecilliores, Spirit, are full of wicked affections, quam ut bona opera possint effi- and are too weak to perform any cere coram Deo. Ad hæc, sunt good deed before God. Besides, in potestate diaboli, qui impel- they are in the devil's
power, who lit homines ad varia peccata, ad driveth men forward into divers. impias opiniones, ad manifesta sins, into profane opinions, and into scelera. Quemadmodum est vi- heinous crimes; as was to be seen dere in philosophis, qui et ipsi in the philosophers, who, assaying conati honeste vivere, tamen id to live an honest life, could not atnon potuerunt efficere, sed con- tain unto it, but were defiled with. taminati sunt multis manifestis many heinons crimes. Such is the sceleribus. Talis est imbecillitas weakness of man, when he is withhominis, cum est sine fide et out faith and the Holy Spirit, and sine Spiritu Sancto, et tantum hath no other guide but the natural humanis viribus se gubernat. powers
of man. Hinc facile apparet, hanc do- Hereby every man may see that ctrinam non
esse accusandam, this doctrine is not to be accused, quod bona opera prohibeat, sed as forbidding good works; but rathmulto magis laudandam, quod er is much to be commended, beostendit, quomodo bona opera cause it showeth after what sort we facere possimus. Nam sine fide must do good works. For without nullo modo potest humana na-faith the nature of man can by no tura primi aut secundi prce- means perform the works of the cepti opera facere. Sine fide non First or Second Table. Without invocat Deum, a Deo nihil ex- faith, it can not call upon God, hope pectat, non tollerat crucem, sed in God, bear the cross; but seekquerit humana prosidia, confi- eth help from man, and trusteth in dit humanis præsidiis. Ita re- man's help. So it cometh to pass gnant in corde omnes cupidi- that all lusts and human counsels tates et humana consilia, cum bear sway in the heart so long as abest fides et fiducia erga Deum. faith and trust in God are absent.
Quare et Christus dixit : Sine Wherefore, also, Christ saith, me nihil potestis facere (John Without me ye can do nothing' xv. 5). Et Ecclesia canit : Sine (John xv. 5), and the Church singtuo numine nihil est in homine, eth, “Without thy power is naught nihil est innoxium.
in man, naught that is innocent.'
ART. XXI.- De Cultu Sanctorum.' Art. XXI.-Of the Worship of Saints. De cultu Sanctorum docent, Touching the worship of saints, quod memoria Sanctorum pro- they teach that the memory of saints poni potest, ut imitemur fidem may be set before us, that we may eorum et bona opera juxta voca- follow their faith and good works tionem; ut Cæsar imitari potest according to our calling; as the Exemplum Davidis in bello ge- Emperor may follow David's examrendo ad depellendos Turcas a ple in making war to drive away patria. Nam uterque Rex est. the Turks from his country; for Sed Scriptura non docet invo either of them is a king. But the care Sanctos, seu petere auxili- Scripture teacheth not to invocate um a Sanctis; quia unum Chri- saints, or to ask help of saints, bestum nobis proponit mediatorem, cause it propoundeth unto us one propitiatorium, pontificem et in-Christ the Mediator, Propitiatory, tercessorem. Hic invocandus est, High-Priest, and Intercessor. This et promisit, se exauditurum esse Christ is to be invocated, and he preces nostras, et hunc cultum hath promised that he will hear maxime probat, videlicet, ut in- our prayers, and liketh this worvocetur in omnibus afflictionibus ship especially, to wit, that he be (1 John ii. 1). Si quis peccat, invocated in all afflictions. “If any
." habemus advocatum apud Deum, man sin, we have an advocate with etc.
God, Jesus Christ the righteous’ (1 John ii. 1).
Hæc fere summa est doctrinæ This is about the sum of doctrine apud nos, in qua cerni potest, ni- among us, in which can be seen that
, hil inesse, quod discrepet a Scri- there is nothing which is discreppturis, vel ab Ecclesia Catholica, ant with the Scriptures, or with the
· Considerably enlarged in the edition of 1540.