A winding-sheet for the service-book

From Wikisource
Jump to navigation Jump to search
A winding-sheet for the service-book  (1726) 
by George Gillespie






Reaſons for which the Book of Common Prayer urged upon Scotland, Anno 1637 and now practiſed in many places in that Kingdom, ought to be refuſed,

IT containeth divers Points and Directions, which would breed a change in ſome Articles of that Doctrine and Diſcipline of the Church of the ſaid Kingdom, which is both warranted in Scripture, and approved by Parliament: And it ſeemeth to be as well againſt State-wiſdom, as againſt Religion, to change any Thing either in the Matter or Form of the ſaid Doctrine and Diſcipline, without firſt ſhewing both ſome Evil or Defect in the Things to be changed, and what Good and Benefit it is, that the ſaid Service-Book will afford more to the Edification of the Church, or true Worſhip of Almighty God, than the Points of Doctrine and Diſcipline, which the ſaid Service-Book would breed a Change of.

II. In the pretended Communion, it hath all the Subſtance and eſſential Parts of the Maſſe and ſo brings in the moſt abominable Idolatry that ever was in the World, in worſhiping of a breaden God, and makes Way to the Antichriſt of doom, to bring this Land under his Bondage again; as may be ſeen at large, by the Particulars of that Communion, wherein ſome Things, that were put out of the Service-Book of England, for ſmelling ſo ſtrong of the Maſſe, are reſtored, and many other Things, that were never in it, are brought out of the Maſſe-Book, though they labour to cover the Matter hath the Commemoration of the Dead; the Table set Altar-ways: The Oblation of the Bread and Wine to God before Conſecration: It hath the Popiſh Conſecration, That the Lord would ſanctify by his Word, and by his holy Spirit, whoſe Gifts and Creatures of Bread and Wine, that they may be unto us, the Body and Blood of his Son, and then repeate the Words of Inſtitution to God, for that Purpoſe. It hath an Oblation of it again, after it is conſecrate; the Conſummation by the Prieſt; kneeling before the conſecrate Bread and Wine. It takes away the eating and drinking by Faith, mentioned in the Engliſh Liturgy. It hath the Patine, Chlaice, two paternoſters in Engliſh, before the Maſſe, and ſeveral other Particulars, that would take a long Time to rehearſe and confute.

III. Though they would take away the idolatrous Maſſe of it, yet it hath a Number of Popiſh Superſtitions and idolatrous Ceremonies; as, twenty nine holy Days, whereof, twenty two are dedicated to Saints, two of them to the Virgin Mary; One whereof, is called, The Anunciation of our Lady: So is made a Lady to Chriſtians, not being on Earth ſhe muſt be Lady in Heaven: Is not this to make her a Goddeſſe? It has fourteen Faſting-Days, and ſome Weeks. It hath alſo the humane-ſacraments of the Croſſe in Baptiſme, laying on of(illegible text) Biſhop's Hand in Confirmation; a Ring for the outward (illegible text) in Marriage; a ſanctified Font, Holy-water, Holineſs Churches and Chancels; private Baptiſm, private Communions, Ceremonies for Burial of the Dead, and Purification of Women after Child-birth, the Prieſt ſtanding, kneeling, turning to the People, and conſequently from them, ſpeaking with a loud Voice, and conſequently ſometimes with a low Voice. People ſtanding at Goſpels, at Gloria Patri, and Creo (illegible text) their Anſwering the Miniſter, and many ſuch like, in Number above fifty, beſides any religious Ornament, that the King, or his Succeſſors, ſhall preſcribe, and Ceremonies that Biſhops ſhall determine, or ſhall be contained in Books of Families, to be ſet forth hereafter.

IV. And though they would take out of the Book, both at Maſſe, and all thoſe ſuperſtitious Ceremonies; yet, it has a Number of other materiall Errors: As, leaving un-read about a hundred and twenty Chapters of God's Word, and putting this Reproach upon them. That they are leaſt edging, and might be beſt ſpared, and reading ſundrie Chapters out of Apocrypha, under the Stile of holy Scripture of the Old Teſtament. It hath a Letanie more like Conjuring than like Prayers. It hath ſome Places, out of which, Pa(illegible text) may prove, That Sacraments are abſolutely neceſſary to salvation; in appointing Baptiſm in Private, with ſuch Help that if Neceſſity require, he that baptizes needs not ſo much as to ſay the Lord's Prayer: And out of which, they may p(illegible text). That Sacraments give Grace by their Works wrought, indeed having Children baptized have all Things neceſſarie to Salvation, and be undoubtedly ſaved. It hath other Places, out of which, they may prove, mo Sacraments than two, which they ſay, every Pariſhoner, who is already baptized ſhall communicate, and ſhall alſo receave the Sacraments; and that Sacraments two, are generally neceſſary to Salvation, as if there were others, eyther not ſo general, or not ſo neceſſarie, It hath other Places, out of which they may prove univerſall Grace; ſaying, God the Father made me, and all the World, and God the Sonne redeemed me, and all Mankinde: One Collect pretends to begge from God, that which they dare not preſume to name, and a Number others of this Sort.

V. Though likewiſe they amend all thoſe Errors, and that there were no materiall Error in it at all; ſo they read nothing at all but Scriptures, yea, and that all their Prayers and Exhortations were nothing but Words of Scripture, yet such a Liturgie were not lawfull to be made the only Form of God's Worſhip in Publick: For, though a formed Liturgie may be to ſerve for Rule to other Churches, and Monuments to Poſterity, what Forms are uſed, or that it may lead the Way, or be a Direction to thoſe that are beginning in the Miniſtry, yet, it is not by reading of Prayers and Exhortations, that the Lord appoints his Servants of the Miniſtrie to worſhip him, or edifie his People; but, he has given Gifts to them, to exhort, pray, and preach, which they ought to ſtir to and uſe; and though they may in their private Studies, make Help of other Mens Gifts, yet it is not lawfull for a Man to tie himſelf, or be tyed by others, to a preſcript Forme of Words in Prayer and Exhortation, for theſe Reaſons;

Firſt, Such a preſcript Forme is againſt the Glorie of God, ſo ſtinting to him ſuch a dayly Meaſure of Service, and ſo rendring the many ſpirituall Petitions and Praiſes, that otherwiſe would be, if God's Gifts were uſed.

Secondly, It is againſt the Dignitie of Chriſt, in making his gifts needleſſe; for, though he ſend downe no Gifts at all, they can ſerve themſelves with the Book, without them.

Thirdly, It quenches the holy Spirit, becauſe he gets no Enjoyment.

Fourthly, It hinders the Edification of God's Poople; they may as well ſtay at Home, and be edified by reading the book themſelves.

Fifthly, It is againſt the Converſion of thoſe that know not God: Will ever a Rat-ryme of Words ſaid over, without feeling or bleſſing, worke upon an unrenewed Heart

Sixthly, It will never ſerve to convince an Heriticke, to check a prophane Perſon, or to waken a ſecure Soul; they may long go on, ere ſuch a Service byte upon them; yea, it ſoſters People in a preſumptuous Conceit, that they are well enough if they be preſent, and ſay their Part of Service.

Seventhly, It foſters a laſie Miniſtrie, and makes Way for putting down Preaching; they need take no Paynes, and therefore need no Stipend: Yea, they may come from the Ail-houſe, or a worſe Place, and ſtep to and read their Service, without eyther Check or Preparation.

Eyghtly, It may all be done by a Boy of seven years old and ſo every private Man that can read; yea, a Turk, if he can read, may be ſuch a Miniſter.

Ninthly, It cannot expreſſe the ſeverall Needs of all People to God, or deal with them, according to their ſeverall Eſtates that will alter otherwiſe then any preſcript Forme can be applyed to.

Tenthly, If any one ſtinted Liturgie had been good, even needfull, no doubt but CHRIST would have ſet One down for us.

VI. Though a perſcript Form of Liturgie were lawfully, yet there is no Warrand for impoſing One: For might not able Miniſters (at leaſt) make a preſcript Forme, to themſelves which would fit them and their People beſt? But if it were lawfull to impoſe One, then there is One in this countrie already. Ought not that rather be impoſed, than any Other ſeeing it is already eſtabliſhed by Parliament, now of a long Time? But now, if a new One ought to be impoſed, then it ought to come in by a lawfull Manner; by a General Aſſemblie, and Men choſen to make it, that are known to have the Gift of Prayer themſelves, and not the Maſſe-Book, tranſlated into Engliſh, urged by Antichriſtian-Prelats, upon God's People, without Conſent of any Generall Aſſemblie of Parliament, againſt the Will of all Men; and with no ſmall Offence and Scandall to the Minds and Conſciences of ſuch as think all Liturgie unlawfull, that is eyther in the Maſters way, or inconſiſtent with the Practiſe and Peace of the Reformed Churches of Scotland hitherto; and againſt the Heart of ſuch, as know many Things in the Engliſh Liturgie and Canons, which the Practiſe of, neyther hath Warrand of God's Word, nor can bring any ſuch Addition, to the Profit, Honour or Power of the King, that is able to compenſate the Loſſe he may make of his good Subjects Affections, by commanding ſuch a Change, as the urged Liturgie would bring to the Peace of our Church, and the Reſpect due to the Acts of Parliament, and longe Custome, whereby our Church-diſcipline, Order, and Government hath been eſtabliſhed.

Re-printed 1726, from a Copy printed 1638.

Aſſembly at Glaſgow, Dec. 6, 1638. Seſſ. 14.

Act Condemning the Service-Book, Book of Canons, Book of Ordination, and the High-Commiſſion.

THE Aſſembly having diligently conſidered the Book of Common-Prayer, lately obtruded upon the Reformed Kirk within this Realme, both in Reſpect of the Manner of the Introducing thereof, and in Reſpect of the Matter which it containeth; Findeth, that it hath been deviſed and brought in by the pretended Prelats, without Direction from the Kirk, and preſſed upon Miniſters, without Warrant from the Kirk, to be univerſally received, as the only Form of Divine-ſervice, under all higheſt Pains, both Civil and Eccleſiaftical: And the Book it ſelf, beſide the Popiſh Frame and Forms in Divine Worſhip, to containe many Popiſh Errors and Ceremonies, and the Seeds of manifold and groſs Superſtition and Idolatrie. The Aſſembly therefore, all in one Voice, hath rejected, and condemned, and by theſe Preſents, doth reject and condemne the ſaid Book, not only as illegally introduced, but alſo, as repugnant to the Doctrine, Diſcipline and Order of this reformed Kirk, to the Confeſſion of Faith, Conſtitutions of Generall Aſſemblies, and Acts of Parliament eſtabliſhing the true Religion; and doth prohibite the Uſe and Practiſe thereof; and ordaine Presbyteries to proceed with the Cenſure of the Kirk againſt all ſuch as ſhall tranſgreſſe.

II. The Aſſembly alſo, taking to their Conſideration, the Book of Canons, and the Manner how it hath been introduced, findeth, that it hath been deviſed by the pretended Prelats, without Warrand or Direction from the Generall Aſſembly; and to eſtabliſh a tyrannicall Power in the Perſons of the pretended Biſhops, over the Worſhip of God, Mens Conſciences, Liberties and Goods, and to overthrow the whole Diſcipline and Government of the Generall and Synodall Aſſemblies, Presbyteries, and Seſſions, formerly eſtabliſhed in our Kirk.

Therefore the Aſſembly, all in one Voice, hath rejected and condemned, and by theſe Preſents, doth reject and condemn the ſaid Book, as contrare to the Confeſſion of our Faith, and repugnant to the eſtabliſhed Government, the Book of Diſcipline, and the Acts and Conſtitutions of our Kirk, prohibits the Uſe and Practiſe of the ſame; and ordains Presbyteries to proceed with the Cenſure of the Kirk againſt all ſuch as ſhall tranſgreſſe.

III. The Aſſembly having conſidered the Book of Conſecration and Ordination, findeth it to have been framed by the Prelats, to have been introduced and practiſed without Warrand of Authority, either Civill or Eccleſiaſticall; and that it eſtabliſheth Offices in God's-houſe, which are not warranted by the Word of God, and are repugnant to the Diſcipline and Conſtitutione of our Kirk; That it is an Impediment to the Entrie of fit and worthy Men to the Miniſtry, and to the Diſcharge of their Duty after their Entrie, conform to the Diſcipline of our Kirk: Therefore the Aſſembly, all in one Voice, hath rejected and condemned, and by theſe Preſent, do reject and condemne the ſaid Book; and prohibits the Uſe and Practiſe of the ſame; and ordains Presbyteries to proceed with the Cenſure of the Kirk againſt all ſuch as ſhould tranſgreſſe.

IV. The Generall Aſſembly, after due Trial, having found That the Court of High Commiſſion, hath been erected without the Conſent or Procurement of the Kirk, or Conſent of the Eſtates in Parliament; That it ſubverteth the Juriſdiction and ordinary Judicatories and Aſſemblies of the Kirk-ſeſſions, Presbyteries, provinciall and nationall Aſſemblies; That it is not regulate by Laws, Civill or Eccleſiaſticall, but at the Diſcretion and Arbitrement of Commiſſioners; That it given to eccleſiaſticall Perſons, the Power of both the Swords, and to Perſons meerly Civill, the Power of the Keys and Kirk-cenſures: Therefore the Aſſembly, all in one Voice, hath doth allowed and condemned, and by theſe Preſents, doth diſallow and condemne the ſaid Court, as unlawfull in it ſelf, and prejudiciall to the Liberties of Chriſt's-Kirk and Kingdome, the King's Honour, in maintaining the eſtabliſhed Laws and Judicatories of the Kirk; and prohibits the Uſe and Practice of the ſame; and ordaines Presbyteries to proceed with the Cenſures of the Kirk, againſt all ſuch as ſhall tranſgreſſe.

The General Aſſembly of the Church of Scotland, in the ſame Aſſembly at Glaſgow, Dec. 13, 1638, judicially de(illegible text)d and excommunicated Maſters John Spotiſwood, pretended Archbiſhop of St. Andrews, Patrick Lindſay, pretended Archbishop of Glaſgow, David Lindſay, pretended Bp. of Edinburgh, Thomas Sidſerfe, pretended Bp. of Galloway, John Maxwell, pretended Bp. of Roſs, Walter Whytford, pretended Bp. of Brechen, Adam Ballantine, pretended Bp. of Aberdeen, James Wedderbum, pretended Bp. of Dumblain.

Alſo Sentence of Depoſition againſt Maſters John Guthrie, pretended Bp. of Murray, George Graham, pretended Bp. of Orkney, James Fairly, pretended Bp. of Liſmore, Neil Campbell, pretended Bp. of the Iſles, Alexander Lindſay, pretended Bp. of Dunkeld, John Abernethy, pretended Bp. of Cathneſs, in General,

I. For declining the General Aſſembly of the Church of Scotland by their Procurator, Dr. Hamilton.

II. For incroaching upon the Liberties and Juriſdiction of the Church, contrare unto the Conditions agreed upon in the General Aſſembly 1600, at Montroſe.

III. For receiving of Conſecration to that infamous Office of Epiſcopacy, condemned by the Confeſſion of Faith, and Acts of this Church, as having no Warrant nor Foundation for the Word of God.

IV. For preſſing the Church of Scotland with Novations of the Worſhip of God, by Virtue of their uſurped Power, and the Power of their High Commiſſion.

V. For their ſeveral other hainous Offences and Enormities, at length expreſſed, and clearly proven in their ſeveral proceſſes; and their Contumacy to the General Aſſembly, ſo their refuſing to undergo Trial and Cenſure for the ſame. More fully to be ſeen in the printed Acts of the General Aſſembly 1638.

Aſſembly at Glaſgow, Dec. 20, 1638 ; Seſſ. 26.

Act concerning the Confeſſion of Faith, renewed in February, 1638.

THE Aſſembly conſidering, that for the purging and Preſervation of Religion, for the King's Majeſties Honour, and for the publick Peace of the Kirk and Kingdome, the Renewing of that nationall Covenant and Oath of this Kirk and Kingdome, in February 1638, was moſt neceſſare; (illegible text)keas the Lord hath bleſſed the ſame from Heaven, with a wonderfull Succeſſe for the good of Religion; That the ſaid Covenant ſuſpendeth the Practiſe of Novations already introduced, and the Approbation of the Corruptions of the preſent Governement of the Kirk, with the civill Places and Power of Kirk-men, till they be tryed in a free Generall Aſſembly: And that now, after long and ſerious Examination it is found, That by the Confeſſion of Faith, the five Articles of Perth, and Epiſcopal-government, are abjured, and to be removed out of this Kirk, and the civill Places and Powers of Kirk-men, are declared to be unlawfull; the Aſſembly alloweth and approveth the ſame, in all the Heads and Articles thereof, and ordaineth, that all Miniſters, Matters of Univerſities, Colledges and Schooles, and all others, who have not already ſubſcribed the ſaid Confeſſion and Covenant, ſhall ſubſcribe the ſame, with theſe Words prefixed to the Subſcription, viz. The Article of this Covenant, which was a the firſt Subſcription, referred to the Determination of the Generall Aſſembly, being now determined at Glaſgow, in December 1638: And thereby, the five Articles of Perth and the Governement of the Kirk by Biſhops, being declared to be abjured and removed, the civill Places and Power of Kirk-men declared to be unlawfull. We ſubſcrive according to the Determination of the ſaid free and lawfull Generall Aſſembly, holder at Glaſgow; and ordaineth, ad perpe tuam rei memoriam, the ſaid Covenant with this Declaration to be inſert in the Regiſters of the Aſſemblies of this Kirk, Generall, Provinciall and Presbyteriall.

Aſſembly at Edinburgh, Auguſt 17, 1639; Seſſ. 8.

Maſter George Graham, his renouncing and abjuring of Epiſcopacy.

The which Day, there was given into the Aſſembly, direct from Mr. George Graham, ſometime pretended Biſhop of Orkney, an Abjuration of Epiſcopacy, ſubſcribed with his Hand, which was publickly held in Audience of the Aſſembly, and thereafter they ordained the ſame to be regiſtrate in the Aſſembly-Books; ad perpetuam rei memoriam whereof the Tenor follows,

TO all and ſundry whom it effeirs, to whoſe Knowledge theſe Preſents ſhall come; ſpecially to the Reverence and Honourable Members of the future Aſſembly to be holden at Edinburgh the 12th Day of Auguſt, 1639 Years: Me(illegible text) Maſter George Graham, ſometime pretended Biſhop of Orkney, being ſorry and grieved at my Heart, That I ſhould ever, for any worldly Reſpect, have embraced the Order of Epiſcopacy the ſame having no Warrant from the Word of God; and being ſuch an Order, as hath had ſenſibly many fearful and evil Conſequences in many parts of Chriſtendom, and particularly within the Kirk of Scotland, as by doleful and deplorable Experience this Day is manifeſt, to have diſclaimed: Likeas I, by the Tenor hereof, do altogether diſclaim and abjure al! Epiſcopal Power and Juriſdiction, with the whole Corruptions thereof, condemned by lawful Aſſemblies within the ſaid Kirk of Scotland; in Regard, the ſame as ſuch an Order, as, is alſo abjured within the ſaid Kirk, by Virtue of that national Oath, which was made in the years 1580 and 1581, promiſing, and ſwearing by the great Name of the Lord our God, That I ſhall never while I live, directly, or indirectly, exerce any ſuch Power within the Kirk; neither yet ſhall I ever approve, or allow the ſame, not ſo much as in my private or publick Diſcourſe: But, on the Contrary, ſhall ſtand and adhere to all the Acts and Conſtitutions of the late Aſſembly holden at Glaſgow, the 21ſt of Nov. 1638, laſt bypaſt; and ſhall concur to the uttermoſt of my Power, ſincerely and faithfully, as Occaſion ſhall offer, in Execution of the ſaid Acts, and in advancing the Work of Reformation within this Land, to the Glory of God, the Peace of the Country, and the Comfort and Contentment of all good Chriſtians, as God ſhall be my Help. In Teſtimony of which Premiſſes, I have ſubſcribed thir Preſents with my Hand, at Breekneſs in Strones, the eleventh day of February, the Year of God 1639 Years, before thir Witneſſes, Mr. Walter Stewart Miniſter at Shoutronaldry, Mr. James Hynd, Minſter at Kirkwall, Mr. Robert Heirſon Miniſter at Firth, and Mr. Patrick Graham Miniſter at Holme, my Son.

For further Light and Satisfaction into the Truth of what is here inſert, we refer you unto the Proceedings of theſe two famous, free, and faithful General Aſſemblies of the Church of Scotland; the firſt held at Glaſgow, 1638, the other at Edinburgh, 1639, which are extant in Manuſcript, lodged yet in the Hands of Severals; where you'll find Prelacy, Book of Common Prayer, and Book of Canons brought to the Bar of Scripture, Reaſon and Antiquity, fairly examined, condemned and juſtly aboliſhed.

PREFACE to the Directory for the publick Worſhip of GOD, agreed upon by the Aſſembly of Devines at Weſtminſter 1645, and approved and received by the Kirk of Scotland the ſame Year.

In the Beginning of the bleſſed Reformation, our wiſe and pious Anceſtors took care to ſet forth an Order ſome Redreſs of many Things, which they, then, by the Word diſcovered to be Vain, Erronious, Superſtitious, and Idolatrous, in the publick Worſhip of God. This occaſioned many godly and learned Men to rejoice much in the Book of Comnmon-Prayer, at that Time ſet forth; becauſe the Maſs, and the reſt of the Latine Service being removed the publick Worſhip was celebrated in our own Tongue: many of the common People alſo received Benefit by hearing the Scriptures read in their own Language, which formerly were unto them as a Book that is ſealed.

Howbeit, long and ſad Experience hath made it manifeſt That the Liturgy uſed in the Church of England, (notwithſtanding all the Pains and Religious Intentions of the Compilers of it) hath proved an Offence, not only to many of the Godly at Home; but alſo to the reformed Churches Abroad. For, not to ſpeak of urging the reading of all the Prayers, which very greatly increaſed the Burden of it the many unprofitable and burdenſom Ceremonies, contained in it, have occaſioned much Miſchief, as well by disquieting the Conſciences of many Godly Miniſters, and People, who could not yield unto them, as by depriving them of the Ordinances of God, which they might not enjoy without conforming or ſubſcribing to thoſe Ceremonies Sundry good Chriſtians have been by Means thereof kept from the Lord's Table, and divers able and faithful Miniſter debarred from the Exerciſe of their Miniſtry (to the endangering many Thouſand Souls, in a Time of ſuch Scarcity of faithful Paſtors) and ſpoiled of their Livelyhood, to the undoing of them and their Families. Prelates and their Factions have laboured to raiſe the Eſtimation of it to ſuch an Height, as if there were no other Worſhip, or Way of Worſhip of GOD, amongſt us, but only the Service-Book to the great Hindrance of the Preaching of the Word, and (in ſome Places, eſpecially of late) to the juſtling of it out as unneceſſary; or (at beſt) as far inferior to the reading of Common-Prayer, which was made no better than an idol by many Ignorant and Superſtitious People, who pleaſing themſelves in their Preſence at that Service, and their Lip-bour in bearing a Part in it, have thereby hardned themſelves in their Ignorance and Careleſneſs of ſaving Knowledge and true Piety.

In the mean Time, Papiſts boaſted, that the Book was a Compliance with them in a great Part of their Service; and ſo were not a little confirmed in their Superſtition and Idolatry, expecting rather our Return to them, than endeavouring the Reformation of themſelves: In which Expectation they were of late very much incouraged, when upon the pretended Warrantableneſs of impoſing of the former Ceremonies, new ones were daily obtruded upon the Church.

Add hereunto (which was not foreſeen, but ſince hath come to paſs) that the Liturgy hath been a great Means, as on the one Hand to make and increaſe an idle and unedifying Miniſtry, which contented it ſelf with ſet Forms made to their Hands by others, without putting forth themſelves to exerciſe the Gift of Prayer, with which our Lord Jeſus Chriſt pleaſeth to furniſh all his Servants whom he calls to that office: So on the other ſide, it hath been (and ever would be, if continued) a Matter of endleſs Strife and Contention in the Church, and a Snare both to many godly and faithful Miniſters, who have been perſecuted and ſilenced upon that Occaſion, and to others of hopeful Parts, many of which have been, and more ſtill would be diverted from all Thoughts of the Miniſtry to other Studies; eſpecially in theſe latter Times, wherein God vouchſafeth to his People more and better Means for the Diſcovery of Error and Superſtition, and for attaining of Knowledge in the Myſteries of Godlineſs, and Gifts in Preaching and Prayer.

Upon theſe, and many the like weighty Conſiderations, in Reference to the whole Book in general, and becauſe of divers Particulars contained in it; not from any Love to Novelty, or Intention to diſparage our firſt Reformers (of whom we are perſwaded, that, were they now alive, they would join with us in this work, and whom we acknowledge as excellent Inſtruments, raiſed by God, to begin the Purging and Building of his Houſe, and deſire they may be had or us and Poſterity in everlaſting Remembrance, with Thankfulneſs and Honour;) but that we may, in ſome Meaſure anſwer the gracious Providence of God, which at this Time calleth upon us for further Reformation, and may ſatisfy our own Conſciences, and anſwer the Expectation of other reformed Churches, and the Deiſres of many of the Gods among our ſelves, and withal give ſome publick Teſtimony of our Endeavours for Uniformity in Divine Worſhip, which we have promiſed in our Solemn League and Covenant: We have, after earneſt and frequent calling upon the Name of God, and after much Conſultation, not with Fleſh and Blood, but with His holy Word, reſolved to lay aſide former Liturgy, with the many Rites and Ceremonies formerly uſed in the Worſhip of God; and have agreed upon this following Directory for all the Parts of publick Worſhip at ordinary and extraordinary Times.

Wherein our Care hath been, to hold forth ſuch Things as are of Divine Inſtitution in every Ordinance; and other Things we have endeavoured to ſet forth according to the Rules of Chriſtian Prudence, agreeable to the general Rule of the Word of God: Our Meaning therein being only, that the general Heads, the Senſe and scope of the Prayers, at other Parts of publick Worſhip, being known to all, there may be a Conſent of all the Churches, in thoſe Things that contain the Subſtance of the Service and Worſhip of God, and the Miniſters may be hereby directed in their Adminiſtrations, to keep like Soundneſs in Doctrine and Prayer, and may, if need be, have ſome Help and Furniture; are yet ſo, as they become not hereby ſlothful and negligent ſtirring up the Gifts of Chriſt in them, but, that each on by Meditation, by taking heed to himſelf and the Flock of God committed to him, and by wife obſerving the Way of Divine Providence, may be careful to furniſh his Head and Tongue with further, or other Materials of Prayer and Exhortation, as ſhall be needful upon all Occaſions.

Royal Witneſſes, with Reſpect to the Engliſh-Service

King Edward VI. his Anſwer to the People aſſembled at Devonſhire, Anno 1549.

AS for the Service in the Engliſh Tongue, it hath manifeſt Reaſons for it: And yet perchance it ſeemeth to you a new Service, and indeed is none other than the Old ſelf-ſame Words in Engliſh which were in Latin, ſaving a few Things taken out, which were ſo fond, that it had been a Shame to have heard them in Engliſh, as all they can Judge, which liſt to report the Truth. The Difference is, he meant godly; that you Our Subjects ſhould underſtand Engliſh, being Our natural Country Tongue, that which is heretofore ſpoken in Latin, then ſerving only for them, which underſtood Latin, and now, for all you which be born Engliſh. How can this with Reaſon offend any reaſonable man, that he ſhall underſtand what any other faith, and ſo conſent with the Speaker? If the Service in the Church was good in Latin, it remaineth good in Engliſh; for nothing is altered, but to ſpeak with Knowledge, that which was ſpoken with Ignorance, and to let you underſtand what is ſaid to you, to the Intent you may further it with your own Devotion: An Alteration to the Better, except Knowledge be worſe than Ignorance. So that, whoſoever hath moved you to diſcurse this Order, can give you no Reaſon, nor anſwer yours, ſo ye underſtood it. Fox's Acts and Monuments, Vol. 2. Pg. 667.

In the eighth Seſſion of the General Aſſembly held in Auguſt 1590, King James VI. was preſent, where he praiſed God, That he was born in ſuch a Time, as in the Time of the Light of the Goſpel, to ſuch a Place, as to be King of ſuch a Kirk, the ſincereſt Kirk in the World. The Kirk of Geneva, ſaid he, keepeth Paſch and Tule: What have they of them? They have no Inſtitution. As for Our Neighbour Kirk in England, their Service is an evil-ſaid Maſs in Engliſh; they want nothing of the Maſs but the Liſtings. I charge you, My good People, Miniſters, Doctors, Elders, Noblemen, Gentlemen and Barons, to ſtand to your Purity, and to exhort the People to do the ſame, and I forſooth, ſo long as I bruik my Life and Crown, ſhall mantain the ſame againſt all Deadly, &c. There was nothing heard for a Quarter of an Hour, but praiſing God, and praying for the King, Calderwood's Hiſt, Pag. 256, 257.

As to Prelacy and the Identity of Biſhop and Presbyter, the (illegible text)eat Eraſmus upon I Tim. 4. 4. Biſhop Cranmer, in his Conferences, P. 310, 331. Biſhop in Defence of his Apology, Part 2d, Chap. 9. Diviſ. 1. Biſhop Morton in his Catholick Apology, Part 1. Chap. 33. Biſhop Bilſon in his book againſt Seminaries, Lib. 1. Pag. 318. and Archbiſhop Whiteguiſt against Carthright, and many others; as Biſhop Fulk, Biſhop Pilkington, Biſhop Fox, &c. Dr. Dunbar, Dr. Hooker, Dr. Whitaker, Dr. Holland, and Dr. Stillingflee in their Writings, overthrow the pretended Divine Right, Prelacy, and plead for it only, as an humane Inſtitution. And not only to, but theſe very Biſhops and prelatical Divines, give their clear and full Conſent, That Arch-epiſcopacy, as it differs from Presbytery, was only of human Right, and not of divine Inſtitution: And theſe Biſhops and Doctors further affirm and prove out of the Fathers, That the Church, at firſt, was governed by common Counſel of Presbyters. And therefore Biſhops (ſays One of them out of Hierom) muſt underſtand, that they be greater than Miniſters, rather by Cuſtom, than the Lord's Appointment; and the Biſhops came in after the Apoſtles Times. Jus Divinus Miniſteri Evangel. Part 2d. Chap. iv.

Alſo, Daniel Tilen, in his Diſputations in the College of Sedan, Geneva, printed 1618. P. 544, declares, That the Difference between Biſhop and Presbyter, hath no Foundation in the ſacred Scriptures, but is only founded upon humane Inſtitution: For Confirmation of which, he cites Hierom. Lombard. Gratian. Card. Cuſan. All which fairly yield the Cauſe of the pretended Divine Right of Prelacy.

The Greek Poſtſcripts of the Epiſtles to Timothy and Titus, cleared in the Parliament of England.

THE Authority of that moſt ancient Parchment M. Copy of the Bible, remaining in his Majeſty's Library at St. James's, being all written in great Capital Greek Letters was vouched and aſſerted by Sir Simonds D'Ewes, in his Speech delivered by him on Friday, June 11, 1641, in the Morning, upon the Debate of the Bill touching Biſhops, &c, by which it infallibly appeareth, That the ſtiling of Timothy the firſt Biſhop of Epheſues, and Titus the firſt Biſhop of Creo are but the bold and ſpurious Additions of ſome Eaſtern Biſhop or Monk, to the Poſtſcripts of thoſe Epiſtles of St. Paul at leaſt 500 Years after Chriſt, The Poſtſcripts of the ſame Epiſtles, in that ancient Manuſcript, agreeing in the Main with the Siriac Teſtament, are only thus: The firſt Timothy, written from Laodicea; The ſecond to Timothy, written from Laodicea; To Titus, written from Nicepolis. The rare M.S. was ſent to his Majeſty, that now is, by Cyrelius, then Patriarch of Alexandria; in which the firſt Letter A. ſtands for (illegible text) and the ſecond Letter B. for (illegible text)

What Thing ſoever I command you, obſerve to do it; thou ſhalt not add thereto, nor diminiſh from it. Deut. 12. 32.

To the Law and to the Teſtimony, if they ſpeak not according to this Word, it is becauſe there is no Light in them. Iſa. 8. 20.

Wherefore the Lord ſaid, Foraſmuch as this People draw near me with their Mouth, and their Fear towards me, is taught by the Precept of Men; therefore, behold, I will proceed to do a marvellous Work amongſt theſe People, even a marvellous Work, and a Wonder; for the Wiſdom of their wiſe Men ſhall periſh, and the Underſtanding of their imprudent Men ſhall be hid. Iſa. 29. 13, 14.

He anſwered and ſaid unto them, Well hath Iſaiah propheſied of you Hypocrites, as it is written, This People honoureth me with their Lips, but their Heart is far from me. Howbeit, in vain do they worſhip me, teaching for Doctrines the Commandments of Men: For, laying aſide the Commandments of God, ye hold the Tradition of Men, as the waſhing of Pots and Cups, and many other ſuch Things ye do. Howbeit full well ye reject the Commandment of God, that he may keep your Tradition. Mark 7. 6, 7, 8, 9.

Thus ſaith the Lord, Stand ye in the Way, and ſee, and look for the old Path, where is the good way, and walk thereafter, and ye ſhall find Reſt for your Souls.——Jer. 6. 16,

And he ſaid unto them, The Kings of the Gentiles exerciſe Lordſhip over them; and they that exerciſe Authority upon them, are called Benefactors: But ye ſhall not be ſo, but he that is greateſt among you, let him be as the Younger, and he that is Chief, as he that doth Serve. Luke 22. 25, 26. Matt. 22. 25, 26, 27. Mark 10. 42, 43, 44.

Feed the Flock of God, which is among you, taking the overſight thereof, not by Conſtraint, but willingly; not for filthy Lucre, but of a ready Mind; neither as being Lords over God's Heritage, but being Enſamples to the Flock. Pet. 5. 2, 3. 2 Cor 1. 24.

And from Miletus, he ſent to Epheſus, and called the Elders of the Church: Take heed therefore unto your ſelves, and to the Flock, over the which the Holy Ghoſt hath made you Overſeers, or Biſhops, to feed the Church of God. Acts 10. 17, 28. Phil. 1. 1. Acts 6. 3, 4.

Ye obſerve Days and Months, and Times and Years. Gal. 10.

Wherefore, if ye be dead with Chriſt from the Rudiments of the World, why, as though living in the World, are ye ſubject to Ordinances (Touch not, taſte not, handle not, which are all to periſh with the Uſing) after the Commandments and Doctrines of Men; which Things have indeed a Show of Wiſdom, in Will-worſhip and Humility, &c——Col. 2. 20, 21, 22, 23.

Meddle not with them that are given to Change. Prov 24. 21.

Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye ſeparate ſaith the Lord, and touch not the unclean Thing, and I will receive you. 2 Cor. 6. 17.

For Treatiſes which further diſcover and confute Prelacy and the Scots and Engliſh Common-Prayer Books, the Reader, that has more Leiſure, may conſult

1. Zions Plea againſt the Prelacy, 4to.

2. Altare Damaſcenum, Edwardi Didoclavii, 4to, 162(illegible text)

3. Gilleſpy's Engliſh Popiſh Ceremonies, 4to, 1637.

4. Dwalſintramus Anatomy of theService-Book, 4to, 164(illegible text)

5. Hugh's Popiſh Errors and Ungodlineſs in the Ser. (illegible text)

6. The Anatomy of the Common-Prayer Book, 4to, 1660

7. Baillie's Paralel of the Liturgy and Maſs-Book, 4to, (illegible text)

8. Firmin againſt Dr. Vandon on the Liturgy, 4to, 166(illegible text)

9. Pinn's Examination of the Common-Prayer, 4to, 166(illegible text)

10. Foreſter againſt Epiſcopacy, 4to, 1706.

11. Smectimnus Redivivus 4to, 1708.

12. Queries to the Scots Innovators, &c. 4to, 1712.

13. Anderſon againſt Rhind, 4to, 1714.

14. Anderſon's Dialogues, 4to.

15. A modeſt Apology, occaſioned by the Biſhop of De

16. De Laun's plea for Noconformiſts, 8vo, 1712.

17. A modeſt Apology for the Church of Scotland, 8vo, 171(illegible text)

18. Jameſon's Sum of Epiſcopal Controverſy, 8vo, 171(illegible text)

19. King's Enquiry into the Conſtitution, Unity and Worſhip of the primitive Church, 8vo. 1713.


IF due Encouragement be given, there is a Deſign to publiſh the Minuts and whole Proceedings of the two free and faithful General Aſſemblies; the firſt held in Glaſgow, November 27, 1638, the Latter at Edinburgh, Auguſt 17, 1639. containing the way and Manner of the Proceeding judicially to purge the Church of all Corruptions and innovations introduced by Prelacy, both Doctrine, Worſhip, Diſcipline, and Government.

This work was published before January 1, 1926, and is in the public domain worldwide because the author died at least 100 years ago.