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and said, Come, and see a man that hath told me all that ever I did, is not he Christ? And many of the Samari-tans believed, because of the saying of the woman, how that he had told her all that ever she did, and went out unto him, and desired him to come in. Which faith was but an opinion, and no faith that could have lasted, or have brought out fruit; but when they had heard Christ, the Spirit wrought, and made them feel. Whereupon they came unto the woman, and said : We believe, not now because of thy saying, but because we have heard ourselves, and know that he is Christ, the Saviour of the world. For Christ's preaching was with power and spirit, The feeling
faith doth that maketh a man feel and know and work too; and not far excel" as the scribes and pharisees preached, and as ours make a the histori
cal faith. man ready to cast his gorge to hear them rave and rage as mad men. And, therefore, saith the Scripture, Cursed is he that trusteth in man, and maketh flesh his arm; that is to say, his strength. And even so, Cursed is he that hath none other belief but because men so say. Cursed were he Cursed is that had none other why to believe than that I say. And trust even so cursed is he that believeth only because the pope man. so saith, and so forth throughout all the men in the world.
THE FAITH THAT DEPENDETH OF ANOTHER
MAN'S MOUTH IS WEAK.
IF I have none other feeling in my faith than because a man
so saith, then is my faith faithless and fruitless. For if I have none other feeling that lechery is sin than that the pope so preacheth, whom I see before my face set up in Rome a stews of twenty or thirty thousand whores, taking of every piece tribute yearly; and his bishops with all other his disciples following the ensample mightily; and
The abomi- the pope therewith not content, but to set up thereto a stews
be burnt at a stake among the Turks, as Moses also command-
alty, a multitude of forty or fifty hundred thousand, to marry, dom al and to give them license to keep every man his whore who lowed.
so will. If, I say, I have none other feeling in my faith that
And in like manner if I had none other feeling in my
so saith, my faith could be but weak and fainty when I
bishopric upon bishopric, promotion upon promotion, Unions, tot benefice upon benefice, with unions and tot quots, robquots.
bing in every parish the souls of their food, and the poor
altered, think that covetousness is as small a sin as lechery
man cast their preaching in their teeth, they answer that
they be better learned and have seen further. If I say I ness to be any sin. have no other feeling that covetousness is sin, than the
preaching of these holy fathers, my faith were built but upon a weak rock, or rather on the soft sand. And
therefore our defenders do right well to foam out their own shame, and to utter the secret thoughts of their hearts. For as they write so they believe, Other feeling of the As the pope
teacheth laws of God and faith of Christ have they none, than that
with the their God the pope so saith. And therefore as the pope
so the Pa preacheth with his mouth only, even so believe they with pists be
lieve with th eirmouth only whatsoever he preacheth without more
their mouth ado, be it never so abominable, and in their hearts consent only. unto all their father's wickedness, and follow him in their deeds as fast as they can run.
The Turks being in number five times more than we are, Turks. knowledge one God, and believe many things of God, moved only by the authority of the elders, and presume that God will not let so great a multitude err so long time.
And yet they have erred and been faithless these eight hundred years. And the Jews believe this day, as much Jews. as the carnal sort of them ever believed; moved also The Turks by the authority of their elders only, and think that it and Jews
believe that is impossible for them to err, being Abraham's seed, and they cannot the children of them to whom the promises of all that we
they bebelieve were made. And yet they have erred and been lieve as
their elders faithless these. fifteen hundred years. And we of like did." blindness believe only by the authority of our elders, and of like pride think that we cannot err being such a multitude. And yet we see how God in the Old Testament did let the great multitude err, reserving alway a little flock God reto call the other back again and to testify unto them the little hock. right way.
HOW THIS WORD CHURCH HATH A DOUBLE
THIS is therefore a sure conclusion as Paul saith, (Rom.
ix.) that not all they that are of Israel are Israelites; neither because they be Abraham's seed are they all Abraham's children, but they only that follow the faith of Abraham. Even so now none of them that believe with their mouths, moved with the authority of their elders only, that is, none of them that believe with M. More's faith, the pope's faith, and the devil's faith, which may stand (as
M. More confesseth) with all manner [of] abominations, have Who they the right faith of Christ or are of his church. But they be that are of God's only that repent and feel that the law is good, and have the true church. law of God written in their hearts, and the faith of our
Saviour Jesus, even with the Spirit of God. There is a
carnal Israel and a spiritual. There is Isaac and Ishmael, The fleshly Jacob and Esau. And Ishmael persecuted Isaac, and persecute Esau Jacob, and the fleshly the spiritual. Whereof Paul the spiri
complained in his time, persecuted of his carnal brethren, as we do in our time, and as the elect ever did and shall do till the world's end. What a multitude came out of Egypt under Moses, of which the Scripture testifieth that they be
lieved, moved by the miracles of Moses, as Simon Magus Acts viii. believed by the reason of Philip's miracles. (Acts viji.)
Nevertheless the Scripture testifieth that six hundred thousand of those believers perished through unbelief, and left their carcases in the wilderness and never entered into the
land that was promised them. And even so shall the The chil.
children of M. More's faithless faith, made by the perdren of this suasion of man, leap short of the rest which our Saviour
s. Jesus Christ is risen unto. And therefore let them emthe papists.
brace this present world as they do, whose children they are though they hate so to be called.
And hereby ye see that it is a plain and an evident conclusion as bright as the sun's shining, that the truth of God's word dependeth not of the truth of the congregation. And therefore when thou art asked why thou believest that Questions. thou shalt be saved through Christ? and of such like principles of our faith? answer, thou wottest and feelest that Answers. it is true. And when he asketh how thou knowest that it is true ? answer, because it is written in thine heart. And if he ask who wrote it ? answer, the Spirit of God. And if Answers to
be made to he ask how thou camest first by it? tell him whether by captious reading in books or hearing it preached, as by an outward papists. instrument, but that inwardly thou wast taught by the Spirit of God. And if he ask whether thou believest it not because it is written in books or because the priests so preach ? answer no, not now, but only because it is written in thine heart, and because the Spirit of God so preacheth and so testifieth unto thy soul. And say, though at the beginning thou wast moved by reading or preaching, as the Samaritans were by the words of the woman, yet now thou John iv. believest it not any longer but only because thou hast heard it of the Spirit of God, and read it written in thine heart.
And concerning outward teaching, we allege for us Scripture older than any church that was this fourteen hundred years, and old authentic stories which they had brought asleep, wherewith we confound their lies. Re- Teachers of member ye not how in our own time of all that taught understood grammar in England, not one understood the Latin tongue? not the La
tin tongue. How came we then by the Latin tongue again ? not by them, though we learned certain rules and principles of them, by which we were moved and had an occasion to seek further, but out of the old authors. Even so we seek up old antiquities out of which we learn, and not of our church, though we received many principles of our church at the beginning, but more falsehood than truth.
It hath pleased God of his exceeding love wherewith he loved us in Christ (as Paul saith) before the world was