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cradle ? howbeit, God withheld him and kept him back God trieth from that evil, through the wisdom of Abigail. How long his elect by suffering slumbered he, or rather how hard in sleep was he in the them to fall od
all adultery of Bathsheba! And in the murder of her husband into temp tation. Uriah! but at both times as soon as he was rebuked, and
his fault told him, he repented immediately, and turned again meekly. Now in all that long time, from the adultery of Bathsheba, until the prophet Nathan rebuked him, he had not lost his faith, nor yet his love unto the laws of God, no more than a man loseth his wits when he is asleep. He had forgot himself only, and had not maliciously cast off the yoke of God's commandments from off his neck.
There is no man so good, but that there cometh a time We may commit sin upon him, when he feeleth in himself no more faith or love and yet not forget God. unto God, than a sick man ofttimes feeleth the taste of his
meat which he eateth. The apos
And in like manner the apostles of Christ at his passion tles being were astonished and amazed, and in such a storm of tempamazed with temp tations, for the sudden change from so great glory, into so
r- vile and shameful death, that they had forgot all the miraChrist's cles and all the words which he had told them before, how miracles.
that he should be betrayed and delivered on the same manner unto death. Moreover, they never understood that saying of his death because their hearts were alway heavy, and overladen with earthly thoughts. For though they saw him raise up other, yet who should raise him up,
when he were dead, they could not comprehend. A great Read what thou canst read, and thou shalt find no temptation laid
temptation like unto that from the creation of the world, upon the or so great as it, by the hundred part. So that the wonapostles.
derful sudden change and the terrible sight of his passion, and of his most cruel and most vile death; and the loss of whom they so greatly loved, that their hearts' would fain have died with him; and the fear of their own death; and the impossibility that a man should rise again of his own power; so occupied their minds, and so astonished them and amazed them, that they could receive no comfort,
tati gat all
either of the Scripture, or of the miracles which they had seen Christ do; nor of the monitions and warnings wherewith he had warned them before ; neither of the women that brought them tidings that he was risen. The sword of temptations, with fear, sorrow, mourning, and weeping, had deeply pierced their hearts, and the cruel sight had so cumbred their minds, that they could not believe, until Christ himself came, death, put off and overcome: The apos
tles were yea, and when they first saw him, they were astonished
very for wondering and joy together, that thoughts arose in their doubtful. hearts, alas, Is this he or doth some spirit mock us? He was fain to let them feel him, and to eat with them, to strengthen their faith.
Howbeit there was none of them that was fallen in his heart from Christ. For as soon as the women brought word, Peter and John ran unto the sepulchre, and saw, and wondered, and would fain have believed that he was risen; and had longed for him ; but could not believe, the wound of temptation being greater than that, that it could be healed with the preaching of a woman, without any other miracle.
Joseph of Arimathea and Nicodemus, which while he yet lived, durst not be known of him, as soon as he was dead, begged his body and buried him boldly. And the women, Christ, his as soon as it was lawful to work, prepared their anointments tion. with all diligence. “And the hearts of the disciples that went to Emmaus burned in their breasts to hear him spoken of.
And Thomas had not forsaken Christ, but could not believe until he saw him; and yet desired and longed to see him, and rejoiced when he saw him, and for joy cried out My Lord, my God. There was none of them that ever
The Discirailed on him, and came so far forth to say he was a deceiver, ples were and wrought with the devil's craft all this while, and see not with whereto he is come in the end : we defy him and all his but yet the
same was works, false wretch that he was, and his false doctrine also. very And thereto must they have come at the last, when fear, doubtful.
sorrow, and wondering had been past, if they had not been
prevented and holp in the mean time. Peter's • Yea, and Peter, as soon as he had denied Christ, came faith failed not.
to himself immediately, and went out and wept bitterly for sorrow. And thus, ye see that Peter's faith failed not, though it were oppressed for a time: so that we need to seek no glosses for the text that Christ said to Peter, how that his faith should not fail. Yes, saith M. More, it faileth in himself, but was reserved in our lady.
But let us see the text and their gloss together. Christ Luke xxii. saith (Luke xxii.) Simon, Simon, Satan seeketh you to sift
you as men sift wheat; but I have prayed for thee that thy faith shall not fail : wherefore when thou art come unto
thyself again strengthen thy brethren. Now put this wise A foolish gloss thereto, and see how they agree together! Simon, gloss made
Satan seeketh to sift you as wheat, but I have prayed for by M. More. thee, that my mother's faith shall not fail ; wherefore when
thou art come to thyself again, according as my prayer hath obtained for thee, that my mother's faith shall not fail, strengthen thy brethren. Now say ye, is not this a proper text and well framed together? Do ye not think there is as much wit in the head of mad Colins, as in the brains of such expositors ?
WHETHER THE POPE AND HIS SECT BE
CHRIST'S CHURCH OR NO.
THAT the pope and his spirits be not the church may
thiswise be proved. He that hath no faith to be saved Pope.
through Christ, is not of Christ's church. The pope
believeth not to be saved through Christ. For he teacheth The pope
to trust in holy works, for the remission of sins and salare not the worinne church of
vation; as in the works of penance, enjoined in vows, in pilgrimage, in chastity, in other men's prayers and holy living ; in friars and friars' coats, in saints' merits, and the
significations put out, he teacheth to believe in the deeds of the ceremonies, and of the sacraments ordained at the beginning, to preach unto us and to do us service, and not that we should believe in them and serve them. And a thousand such superstitiousnesses setteth he before us, instead of Christ to believe in; neither Christ nor God's word, neither honourable to God nor serviceable unto our neighbour, nor profitable unto ourselves for the taming of the flesh; which all are the denying of Christ's blood.
Another reason is this. Whosoever believeth in Christ, 2. consenteth that God's law is good. The pope consenteth not that God's law is good. For he hath forbidden lawful The pope wedlock unto all his, over whom he reigneth as a temporali
ding martyrant with laws of his own making, and not as a brother ex- riage to horting them to keep Christ's. And he hath granted unlawful
doth not whoredom unto as many as bring money. As through consent
that the law Dutchland, every priest, paying a gildren unto the archdea- of God is con, shall freely and quietly have his whore, and put her away at his pleasure, and take another at his own lust. As they do The pope in Wales, in Ireland, Scotland, France, and Spain. And whoredom
licenseth in England, thereto, they be not few which have licences to which God
forbiddeth. keep whores, some of the pope, and some of their ordinaries. And when the parishes go to law with them to put away their whores, the bishop's officers mock them, poll them, and make them spend their thrifts, and the priests keep their whores still. Howbeit, in very deed, since they were rebuked by the preaching of Wickliffe, our English spiritualty have laid their snares unto men's wives to cover their abominations, though they bide not alway secret.
Thereto all Christian men, if they have done amiss, re- 3. pent, when their faults be told them. The spiritualty The pop repent not, but, of very lust and consent to sin, persecute clergy are both the Scripture, wherewith they be rebuked, and also tors. them that warn them to amend, and make heretics of them and burn them. And besides that, the pope hath made a An abomiplain decree, in which he commandeth, saying, Though the wicked. pope sin never so grieviously, and draw 'with him to hell and devilish by his ensample thousands innumerable, yet let no man be so hardy to rebuke him. For he is head over all and none over him, Distinct. xl. Si Papa..
And Paul saith (Rom. xiii.) Let every soul obey the Rom, xiii.
higher powers that are ordained to punish sin. The pope
will not, nor let any of his. 5. And Paul chargeth (1 Cor. v.) If he that is a brother I Cor. v.
be an whore-keeper, a drunkard, covetous, an extortioner,
or a railer, and so forth, that we have no fellowship with The pope is him; no, not so much as to eat in his company. But the utterly against the pope with violence compelleth us to have such in honour, doctrine of to receive the sacraments of them, to hear their masses, and
to believe all they say; and yet they will not let us see whether they say truth or no. And he compelleth ten parishes to pay their tithes and offerings unto one such, to go and run at riot at their cost, and to do nought therefore. And a thousand such like doth the pope, contrary unto Christ's doctrine.
THE ARGUMENTS WHEREWITH THE POPE
NOTWITHSTANDING, because, as they be all
shaven, they be all shameless to affirm that they be the right church and cannot err, though all the world seeth that not one of them is in the right way, and that they have with utter defiance forsaken both the doctrine and living of Christ and of all his apostles ; let us see the sophistry wherewith they would persuade it. One of their high reasons is this: The church, say they, was before the heretics, and the heretics came ever out of the church, and left it. And they were before all them which they now call heretics and Lutherans, and the Lutherans came out of them, &c. Wherefore they be the right church, and the other heretics indced, as they be called. Well, I will likewise dispute.
Their first reason.