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landthon. Here then they fay (x) St. Jerome teaches that the diftinct Degrees of Bishops and Presbyters, or Paftors, are only conftituted by Human Authority: And the thing Speaks it felf, because the Office and the Command is plainly the fame, and Ordination alone afterwards made the Difference between Bishops and Paftors. For fo it was afterwards inftituted, that one Bishop fhould ordain Minifters of the Word in many Churches. But becaufe by the Divine Law there is no Difference between a Bifhop and a Paftor, there is no doubt but an Ordination of fit Minifters made by a Paftor in his own Church is firm, and approved by Divine Right. Therefore when thofe ordinary Bifhops perfecute the Gospel, and will not ordain fit Perfons to the Miniftry, every Church in this Cafe has the Right and Power to ordain her Minifters. They fay alfo, (y) If Bifhops would rightly discharge their Office, and take care of the Church,
(x) Hic docet Hieronymus, diftin&tos gradus Epifcoporum & Presbyterorum, five Paftorum, tantum humana autoritate conftitutos effe: idq; res ipfa loquitur, quia officium & mandatum plane idem eft, & fola ordinatio poftea difcrimen inter Epifcopos & Paftores fecit. Sic enim poftea inftitutum fuit, ut unus Epifcopus ordinaret Miniftros verbi in pluribus Ecclefis. Quia autem jure divino nullum eft difcrimen inter Epifcopum & Paftorem, non eft dubium ordinationem idoneorum Miniftrorum a Paftore in Ecclefia fua factam, jure divino ratam & probatam effe. Itaq; cum Epifcopi ifti ordinarii Evangelium perfequantur, & idoneos ad minifterium ordinare nolint, unaquæq; Ecclefia in hoc cafu jus & poteftatem habet ordinandi Miniftros fuos. Ofiand. Epist. Hist. Ecclef. Cent. 16. lib. 2. cap 37. P 300
() Si Epifcopi fuo officio recte fungerentur, & curam Ecclefiæ & Evangelii gererent, poffet,illis nomine charitatis & tranquillitatis, non ex neceffitate, permitti ut nos & noftros Concionatores ordinarent & confirmarent. Quia vero Quapropter,
nec funt, nec effe volunt veri Epifcopi, ficut vetera exempla Ecclefiæ & Patrum nos docent, idoneos ad hoc officium ipfi ordinare debemus & volumus. Ibid. p. 282.
and of the Gospel, they might, BY WAY OF CHARITY, AND FOR PEACE SAKE, NOT OUT OF ANY NECESSITY, be PERMITTED to ordain and confirm us and our Preachers. But because they neither are, nor will be true BISHOPS, therefore, according as the ancient Examples of the CHURCH and of the Fathers teach us, WE OUR SELVES OUGHT, AND WILL ordain fit Perfons to this Office. And accordingly they did take upon them to ordain not only fuch to whom they gave the Names of Paftors or Presbyters, but alfo fuch as they called Bishops. () Thus the Elector of Saxony having nominated Nicolas Amfdorfins to be Bishop of Naumburgh, this Noble Man and Bachelor (as Melchior Adams ftiles him, after he had been Paftor of the Church of Magdeburg 18 Years) was ordained Bishop by Luther, Nicolas Medler Paftor of Naoburg, George Spalatine of Aldenburg, and Wolfgang Steine of Leucopetre, laying on their Hands together with him. Thus were the German Bishops or Superintendents (as they have been fince called) amongst the Lutherans ordained by fuch as pretended themselves to be no more than Presbyters: And that not thro' any Neceffity (which yet would not have authorized fuch an Attempt) but upon Principle: (a) And Luther wrote a Book in High Dutch to justify it, which he entituled, The Example of inaugurating a true Chriftian Bishop.
() Itaq; die vicefimo Januarii Anno 1542 præfente J. Friderico Electore, & J. Ernefto fratribus, Ducibus Saxoniae in ipfo oppido Naoburgi ad Salam, vir hic nobilis & cœlebs Epifcopus ordinatus eft a Luthero, fimul manum imponentibus Nicolao Medlero Paftore Naoburgenfi, Georgio Spalatino "Aldenburgenfi, & Wolfgango Steinio Leucopetræo. Melch. Adam. de viris German. Theolog in vit. Nic. Amfdorf. pag 69.
(a) Melch. Adam in loc. fupra citat. & in vit. Luther: P. 150.
I fay they lay under no Neceffity of ordaining a Bishop in fuch manner at that time, because (b) Six Years before, Herman Archbishop of Colen had begun a Reformation in his Diocese, and at this very time that they thus pretended to ordain Amfdorfins, was endeavouring after a yet further Reformation, and had Philip Melanthon, Luther's Bofom Friend, then with him, to advise him in that Affair; fo that they might have had Amfdorfius confecrated by a Proteftant Bishop, if they had pleafed. But to do it themselves was agreeable to the Doctrine of the Smalcaldick Articles, which they had fubfcribed, and were refolved to act accordingly. (c) In the fame manner John Bugenhagen fettled the Lutheran Religion in Denmark, and like his Brother Luther, made new Bifhops or Superintendents there, in the room of those that were ejected, for there was not one of the old regular confecrated Bishops which joined there with the Reformation. So that there is no real Epifcopacy in a regular Succeffion, agreeable to the true Primitive Epifcopacy, in any Lutheran Country, except in Sweden, if they have in Truth preferved it there. Nor was it Neceffity, as I have fhewed, that caufed them thus to deviate from the Primitive Inftitution of Christ and his Apoftles, but Principle, and a Principle drawn from the Dregs of Popery; (d) Gratian the Canonift having cited a Paffage in St. Jerome, which dropt from that Father when he wrote in Heat and
(b) Ofiand. Epift. Hift. Ecclef. Cent. 16. lib. 2. cap. 36. p. 251. & cap. 48. p. 344.
(c) King's Animadverfions on Molesworth's Account of Denmark, P. 174. & Ofiand. Epift. Hift. Ecclef. Cent. 16. lib. 2. cap. 39. P. 311.
(d) Dift. 95. c. 5. olim idem erat Presbyter qui & Epifcopus.
Paffion against the Infolence of the Roman Deacons, they pick'd it up, and laid it down as a Principle of their Reformation, tho' directly contrary to the Inftitution of Christ and his Apoftles, and the Doctrine of the Primitive Church, and the unanimous Opinion and Teftimony of all the Fathers to the Time of the Council of Nice, and long after, and even contrary to many other Paffages of St. Jerome himself. But about Two or Three Centuries before the Reformation, this Notion of Bishops and Presbyters being one and the fame Order, became a current Doctrine amongst the Romanifts, and from thence the Lutherans pick'd it up, and Gerhard a Lutheran Author (e) gives us a Multitude of Canons cited from Gratian, together with a great Number of Quotations from Schoolmen, Canonifts, Cardinais, and other Popish Writers, afferting the Identity of these Two Orders. And the Smalcaldick Article before quoted is plainly founded upon those Citations. And it is very certain that the Court of Rome laboured hard to prevent Epifcopacy's being declared to be of Divine Right in the Council of Trent, and Father Lainez made a long Speech of Two Hours to hinder the paffing of that Decree, (f) declaring, That it was a Contradiction to say that the Pope was Head of the Church and the Government Monarchical, and yet to affirm that there was any Power or Jurifdiction not derived from him, or derived any other way. The Lutherans indeed rejected the Pope's Supremacy, and that very juftly, but retained the other Opinion of Epifcopacy's being a meer Human Institution, declaring they could admit it by way of Charity, or for
(e) Gerh. Confeff. Cathol. Part 2. Artic, de Cler. p. 28,
Peace fake, but not that they thought it in any manner neceffary: And therefore never took any care to preferve the Epifcopal Succeffion in any Country but Sweden, tho' they might have done it by Herman Archbishop of Colen if they had pleafed; for one Bijhop may confecrate another in Case of Neceffity, as Pope Gregory told Auguftin our first Archbishop of Canterbury. Neither was he the only Bishop that came over to their Communion, for Petrus Paulus Vergerius Bishop of Juftinopolis (g) came over to them not long after Herman; fo that they might not only have had valid, but alfo Canonical Epifcopal Confecrations, if they had pleased. (b) For the Canons allow Two Bishops to confecrate another. But they had no Regard to their Character, nor does it appear that they were treated or refpected more than meer Presby ters, but went on to confecrate or ordain by Presbyters only, according to the Doctrine of the Smalcaldick Articles, which were afterwards confirmed in the Concord, (i) a Book which all the Divines and Schoolmafters amongst the German Lutherans are obliged to fubfcribe, by a Decree figned in the Year 1580, by above Fourfcore Princes and States of that Communion, amongst which were Five Dukes of Brunfwick Lunenburg. (k) In which Concord alfo they exprefly affert and maintain the Ubiquity of the Body of Christ, and its Union with the Bread and Wine in the Lord's Supper, and that the Body and Blood of Christ are there corporally prefent, and eaten by the Communicants, whether they be good or bad: and exprefly condemn the contrary Doctrines.
(g) Ofiand. Epit. Hift. Eccl. Cent. 16. lib. 2. cap. 71. P. 500, 501., (b) Can. Apoft. 1. (i) Ofiand. Epit. Hift. Eccl. Cent, 16. 1. 4. c. 5. (k) Art. 7. 8.