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§. III. First, be infifts upon it, that the Pretended Baptism which is administer'd by Persons who never were Commissioned to Baptize, or who never were impower’d, never authoriz'd to Baptize, is Null and Void, and no Christian Baptism: This is the Subject of bis * Treatises of Lay-Baptism already published; this their Design to prove ; and this Baptism, the Author calls Lay-Baptism ; Baptism destitute of a Commission ; unai. thoriz'd Baptism, because done by such as were never authoriz'd : And in several Places of those Treatises be calls thus false Baptism, by the Name of Invalid Baptism, upon Supposition that he has prov'd it to be so. So that throughout those bis several Books, the Terms of

Lay. Baptism, Unauthoriz'd Baptism, and Inva

lid Baptism," do all mean this one and the sameThing, Baptism by those who never were Commission'd, Authoriz'd, or impower'd to Baptize. This he thought be had sufficiently declared before ; especially by adding a new Definition in bis 3d Edition of Lay-Baptism Invalid: But that no one may benceforward mistake bis Meaning, be thinks it very pertinent to declare it once more, in Answer to the Vth Page of Mr. Bingham's Preface, where he says, and reckons it a great Error, that I frequently Confound the Terms of Lay-Baptism, Wn

authorizd Baptism, and Invalid Baptisın, toge

ther, buc. For, any Man that does but look into the Treatises before mention'd, may easily see, that all which has been there said upon this Subject, is confin’d to Baptism by Persons never Commission'd at all to Baptize : Are not these Lay-Baptisms ? Sure if such Persons are not Laicks, then there are no Laicks at all in the Church,

Lay-Baptism Invalid.! Sacerdotal Powers. Diflenters Baptism Null and Void. The Bishop of Oxford's Charge Consider'd.

Are

Are not such Baptisms Unauthoriz’d, i, e. never Autho. riz'd ? Certainly they are. And when they have been prov’d to be Invalid, is it any wrong confounding of Terms to call them Lay, Unauthoriz'd, und Invalid Baptisms? What is it then that Mr.Bingham requires ? What Name would be have us give to Baptisms perform’d by Persons who were never Commission'd , if we must not call them Lay-Baptisms? This cavilling at Words discovers an Inclination in him to make Things look like Errors, when they are so far from being so, that they are exactly right and just; and let him prove the contrary if

be can.

$. IV. Secondly, Those Things which were never deSign’d to be determin’d Negatively or Affirmatively in the feveral Treatises written by the Author of Lay-Baptism Invalid, are these , ift. Á supposed Power of Bishops [ which some say they have ] to Commission Laymen to Baptize in Cases of Extremity. Whether Bishops can or cannot so commission Lay-Men, the Author (whatever his private Opinion is about it , ) had no Mind publickly to determine, because bis Business was only with those who were without all Dispute never commission'd by Bishops, in any Respect wkatsoever, to Baptize; and So is utterly foreign to the other Question , How far Bishops have Authority to impower or commission Men for Sacred Ministrations. I have in severalPlaces indeed, Shew'd the Danger of their endeavouring to vest Lay Men with Pawer to Baptize, in Case of suppos'd Necessity; I bave also opposid some pretended Arguments, which have been advanced to prove, that Bishops have such a Power to authorize Lay-Men; and even in this Book I bave shew'd, that the Catholick Church has determin’d nothing in Favour of such a Power: But yet in all this I will not concern my self so far as publickly to determine whether Bishops have or bave not such a supposid extensive Power for Cases of Extremity; and let Men take which Side of

the

the Question they please, the Trutb I am concern'd about will stand good, that pretended Baptism by Persons never commission'd by WBishops to Baptize [ who are therefore certainly Lap-Den] is utterly Null And Void. If Bishops can really veft their own LayMen with Power to Baptize, in want of the Clergy, then 'twill follow, that such Lay-Men fo Baptizing, are not Laicks in that Act of Ministration, because vested with a Priestly Power for that Purpose, by the Hypothesis : But this Proposition wants to be prov'd; and I care not whether it can be prov'd or no, for it no ways affects the present Controversy; since there must be always Bishops in the Church to vest Men with Commission to baptize, how Contracted or Extensive soever the Power of Bishops is for this purpose ; and since there can be no valid Ministration of Baptism without an Episcopal Commission really given to the Baptizer : Which is the great Proposition I am concern’d

for. 2dly, The Validity or Invalidity of some ancient beretical and schismatical Baptisms, were not design’d to be insisted upon by that Autbor ; because they were also different from the Case before w; their Baptisms were perform’d by Persons who had been commission'd by Bishops to Baptize ; and so whatever the Nature of their Baptisms was, it had no Conoparison with that sort of Baptism which is evidently and professedly perform’d, not only by those who were never Episcopally Commission'd, but also in Opposition to the Divine Right of Episcopacy, or the Apostolical Order it felf. A new Usurpation this, of fo monstrous a Nature , that whatsoever may be fairly pleaded in behalf of the Ancient , Heretical, and Schifmatical Baptisms, cannot be said in Defence of these, as will be seen in due Time,

b. y. In the Historical Account of those Heretical and Schismatical Baptisms, I have indeed express’d a great Value and Esteem for St. Cyprian and bis Colleagues

Eccle

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Ecclesiastical Laws or Canons against them. Laws fo ftrict, as that they Condemn'd all such Baptisms to be Null and Void. And why should not the Spiritual Supreme Governors of the Church, have power to make such Laws, as shall so far limit and restrain the Commision they give to Ordain'd Persons, that when they presume to do any thing by Virtue thereof, in Heresy or Schism, their Ads shall be wholly Null and Void by Virtue of such Laws? St. Cyprian and his Colleagues did make Ecclefiaftical Laws to this purpose (as we shall see hereafter) and in so doing I reckon that they acted like themselves, and took the most effe&tual way to beat down 'Heresy and Schism: : If the rest of the Churches, who in their Discipline differ'd from St. Cyprian and his colleagues, had made such Laws as they did, those Laws being in such case Universal, might in all likelihood, have preserv’d the Unity of the Church, and prevented the many Dreadful Heresies and Schisms which afterwards ensu’d: But these Churches would not concur so far with That Blessed Martyr; They would not agree with him, to make frustrate and void, during their Heresy and Schism, the Commiffions, once receiv'd by their Heretical and Schismatical Subjects ; and because they were not so Nulld by such wish’d-for Laws,therefore their Ministrations were by those Churches esteem'd to be Good and Valid in themselves, tho' the Persons concern’d in them, both Administrators and Receivers, were tainted with the Sinful Circumstances of Heresy and Schism; Insomuch, that tho' these Churches did not declare thosé Baptisms to be Null and Void in the Administrations, for want of Commission in the Administrator, yet they reckon'd, that the Spie ritual Graces were impeded, or hinder'd from Descending

the Baptized, by reason of the Sins of Herely and Schism, till the Baptized return’d to the Unity of the Church, and as Penitents,receiv'd Abfolution by Imposition of the Bishop's Hands, and then the Spiritual Graces of Baptism were reckon'd to take effe&t. Thus those. Churches held such

Baptisms

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Baptisms to be valid in themselves as to their Miniftra

tion, and lo do I too, because there was no want of 6. Commillion; and tho' I submit to this not so strict

Discipline as that of the Cyprianick Churches ; yet I should value and esteem St. Cyprian's Discipline , rather than this, if it were establish'd in the Cburcb : But this my preferring one before the other, is no Argument that I therefore esteem to be null and void , what I think not so perfect in its Circumstance as the other,

un

of Rome,

S. VI. Mr. Bingham says that the Author of Lay-
Baptism Invalid's "Notions concerning the Invalidity

of Heretical and Schismatical Baptism, do, in
their direct and immediate Consequence
church and unbaptize the whole Church of Eng-
land, unless it can be shew'd that we had our
Baptism from some other Church originally,
than from the Heretical and Schismatical Church

Preface p. V. This indeed is a momentous Confideration, and of so mighty Importance, that it would bave been but just in Mr. Bingham to bave nam'd that Author's black Notions in his own Words, and at the same time too as he brings in so heavy a Charge against him; and prosecutes it to the utmost for almost two Pages together, without so much as naming One of those dismal Notions and Arguments be talks of. But to accuse heavily and positively a long while before we come to a Trial of Men's supposed Crimes, has something in it of Policy and Cunning to win upon the Faith of the credulous. But by what I bave already said in this Preface, and shall further say in the Prosecution of this Discourse, the Reader may easily see, that I have no such Nocions as tend to the unchurching and unbaptizing of our Church of England, or indeed of any other Episcopal Church in the world, that retains the Ellentials of Christ's Hoby Institutions as our Church most certainly does : And if Mr. Bingham, or any other, can prove that I bave

any

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