Page:Behemoth 1889.djvu/38

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take the pains to examine. So that all sorts of people were fully resolved, that both the doctrine was true, and the Pope’s authority no more than was due to him.

B. I see that a Christian king, or state, how well soever provided he be of money and arms, where the Church of Rome hath such authority, will have but a hard match of it, for want of men. For their subjects will hardly be drawn into the field and fight with courage against their consciences.

A. It is true that great rebellions have been raised by Church-men in the Pope’s quarrel against kings, as in England against King John, and in France against King Henry IV. Wherein the Kings had a more considerable part on their sides, than the Pope had on his; and shall always have so, if they have money. For there are but few whose consciences are so tender as to refuse money when they want it. But the great mischief done to kings upon pretence of religion is, when the Pope gives power to one king to invade another.

B. I wonder how King Henry the Eighth could then so utterly extinguish the authority of the Pope in England, and that without any rebellion at home, or any invasion from abroad.

A. First, the priests, monks, and friars, being in the height of their power, were now for the most part grown insolent and licentious; and thereby the force of their arguments was now taken away by the scandal of their lives, which the gentry and men of good education easily perceived: and the Parliament consisting of such persons, was therefore willing to take away their power: and generally the common people, which from a long custom had been in love with Parliaments, were not displeased therewith. Secondly, the doctrine of Luther beginning a little before, was now by a great many men of the greatest judgment so well received, as that there was no hope to restore the Pope to his power by rebellion. Thirdly, the revenue of abbeys and all other religious houses, falling thereby into the King’s