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the RIGHTS OF THE CHRISTIAN CHURCH ASSERTED. The worthy Author, who has done the Church good Service, in answering that pernicious Book, I dare say, never designed, that any thing in his most Excellent Book should be constru'd to favour our Lay-Baptisms, which are evidently in Opa position to the Divine Right of Episcopacy, and for which the Hierarchical Powers of the Church of England have provided NO ACT OF CONFIRMATION. So that, in thefe Nations, our Lay-Baptizers, and their Proselytes, can reap no Benefit by any thing afserted in this Objection.
I HAVE already, under the Corollary of the Third Proposition, declar'd my Reasons against the Dispensing Power pleaded in this Objection; to which I shall further add, That I acknowledge the Divine Powers of the Hierar: chy; but with this Restriction ; That since the Settling of the Canon of the Holy Scriptures, they are for ever limited IN THINGS FUN. DAMENTAL to that Rule, from which they have no Authority to deviate, and consequently not to dispense with any of the Essentials of Baptism, which (without all doubt) is a Fun: damental of Christianity : Such a Dispensation must be a Violation of Christ's Law; and how that should be to Edification, is inconceivable; fince Chrift, our Great Lawgiver, has provided Fundamentals sufficient for the Edification of his Church, in all Circumstances whatso
ever ; and Obedience to his Laws about Fun-
THIS I say in Oppolition to those who
that he would not venture to affirm that they really are ; and 'tis reasonable to believe, that upon Second Thoughts, he will not allow fo much, as that they may be so empowerd: Because what may be, may not be, as far as we know. Nay, 'tis more agreeable to Reveald Religion, to say, that they are not so empower'd; because a Thing of so great Moment would never have been left out of the Divine Oracles, to be handed down to us thro? all Ages, by the UNCERTAIN METHOD of Oral Tradition only. And therefore, ’tis very unsafe for us to truit in such ( may be's ), when the Receiving, or not Receiving, of Spiritual Supernatural Privileges and Benefits, depends upon the Truth or Falsity of such a Dispensing Power, as it certainly does in the Administration of Christian Sacraments. "He“ retical, Schismatical and Mimical Baptisms, are in this Objection acknowledg’d to be not “ Entire or Valid in themselves; therefore in themselves thery are utterly and entirely Invalid ; (by the Corollary of the Third Proposition.) It is also said, That" as to any Spiritual Graces,
they are not to be had thereby, till, &c. Which is a plain Indication, that of THEMSELVES they are of no Efficacy to the Purposes of Christian Baptism ; the Administration whereof is certainly efficacious for the Conveyance of Spiritual Graces. Again : They are calld here “ Defective and Irregular Afts. But why are they Defective; except but for their being
uncapabice producing the proper Effects of true Baptism? And why should they be term'd Irregular Atts; except only but for being contrary to the Stated Rule, (or, which is the fame) the First Institution of Christian Baptism?
So that the External Rite perform’d by these Heretical, Schifmatical and Mimical Bajme tizers, being thus acknowledg’d to be contra
ry to the Institution of Baptism, and utterly ☺ incapable in it self of being the Means to
convey any Spiritual Graces; what has it to do with Christian Baptism? Certainly it must be a mere Nullity, and all one as if it had ne
ver been perform’d: Because, if it had no à Virtue to confer Spiritual Graces, it had no
Virtue to confer any Benefit at all; for even the outward Privileges are no Privileges, when feparate from the Spiritual Graces.
Thus, all Persons on whom the faid External Rite was perform’d, can receive by means thereof none of the Benefits of Christian Baptism; which are all Spiritual and Supernatural; and consequently, must remain in the State of the Unbaptiz?d, till they receive True Christian Baptism; which, how they can receive, without repeating the External Rite by à Proper Administrator, is utterly inconceiv. able. It is faid indeed, That:66 those Defective " and Irregular Acts (i. e. the External Rites of those Heretical, Schismatical and Mimical Baptisms) are Supply'd, Righted, and Confirmod L
by the Chrism of the Bifbop, or Imposition of his “ Hands, &c. For Answer to which, I refer the Reader to the Corollary of the Third Propos filion; and further add, That this is only said, and not provid; and I believe never will, till it can be demonstrated, that, that which before was no Baptism at all in the Christian Sense of the Word, is now made True Christian Baptism, (without the act of Baptization) merely by the Bishop's Chrism, or Impoli, tion of his Hands. Either the first External Rite was the ONE BAPTISM the Scripture speaks of, or it was not; if it was, then it was Entire and Valid Baptism, and consequently wants no such A&
A& of the Bishop to supply and right it; but if it was not that ONE BAP TISM, then nothing can make it so, but the very Act of Baptization by a Christian Minifter: For it may with as much reason be af. firnid, that Baptism is Administer'd really and truly by such Act of the Bishop, to all other Unbaptiz?d Persons as well as to those; and so at last, Baptism it felt will be render'd needs less, when the want
of it can be fo easily supply’d: But no less than a Divine Revelation will suffice to convince us, that this is true; and till that is producd, we must continue to believe Eliat not all the Aēts of the Higheft Created. Powers on Earth, are fufficient to make that, which before was no Baprifm,to become Christian Baptism, without the act of Baptization by a proper Minister, as Christ has appointed