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manner of a fellowship, or collegiate society, maintaining themselves, and the poor of the Church, with a common purse; the rest of the faithful keeping that purse continually stored. And in this sense it is that the SACRED HISTORY saith, All which believed were in one place, and had all things common,' Acts ii. 44.

"In the histories of the Church, and in the writings of the ancient Fathers for centuries after, we find no other way for the maintenance of the clergy, but only this, the treasury of JESUS CHRIST, furnished through men's devotion, bestowing sometimes goods, sometimes lands, that way; and out of His treasury, the charge of the service of GOD was defrayed, the Bishop, and the clergy under him, maintained; the poor, in their necessity, ministered unto. For which purpose, every Bishop had some one of the Presbyters under him, to be treasurer of the Church, to receive, keep, and deliver all, which office, in Churches Cathedral, remaineth even till this day, albeit the use thereof, be not altogether so large now as heretofore. The disposition [disposal] of their goods was by the appointment of the Bishop. Wherefore Prosper, speaking of the Bishops' care therein, saith, "It was necessary for one to be troubled therewith, to the end

The Levitical priesthood was amply provided for by THE LAW OF GOD. Hooker, p. 379, 380, reckons, that if the quality of the tythes and offerings assigned to the Jewish clergy, the priests and Levites, and their manner of receiving them without labour, expence, or charge, be taken into consideration, the tribe of Levi had four-twelfths of the produce of the Holy Land, or four times as much as any of the other tribes. They had also a considerable landed property, for GOD was pleased to appoint them forty-eight cities, scattered through the twelve tribes, with territories of land or glebes adjoining, to hold as their own free inheritance for ever, both to enable them to discharge, and reward them for discharging duly, their sacred functions of instructing and educating the people in religion and morality. Barnabas, the Levite, was one of the foremost contributors to the maintenance of the Christian Church, "who sold the land in his possession, and brought the money, and laid it at the Apostles' feet," Acts iv. 36, 37. And his example was followed by several of the primitive Fathers of the Church, Paulinus, Hilary, Cyprian, &c. who, before they were made bishops, having been owners of ample possessions, sold them, and gave them away to the poor.

When, therefore, the Apostle judged that "Presbyters, who ruled well in the Church of CHRIST, should be accounted worthy of double honour," 1 Tim. v. 17, he meant double the stipend which the priests of the law received, as is evident from the parallel passage, "For if that ministry which was of the letter were so glorious, how shall not the ministry of the Spirit be more glorious?" 2 Cor. iii. 7, 8. That is, if the ministers of the LAW, which was only "the letter," or contained the rudiments or elements of the GOSPEL, was so honourably maintained, how much more the ministers of the Spirit, or higher evangelical dispensation?" If the labourer was worthy of his hire" under THE LAW, how much more under THE GOSPEL? 1 Tim. v. 18.

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that the rest under him might be freer to attend quietly their spiritual businesses.


Touching the Bishop, as his place and estate was higher, so [was] likewise the proportion of his charges about himself: [they] being for that cause, in all equity and reason, greater. Yet forasmuch as his stint herein was no other than it pleased himself to set, the rest [of the clergy] (as the manner of inferiors is, to think that they which are over them have always too much,) grudged many times at the measure of the Bishop's private expense; perhaps not without cause. Howsoever [that might be,] by this occasion, there grew amongst them great heart burning, quarrel, and strife. Wheresoever the Bishops were found culpable, as eating too much beyond their tether, and drawing more to their own private maintenance than the proportion of CHRIST'S patrimony, being not greatly abundant, could bear; sundry constitutions [of councils] hereupon were made to moderate the same, according to the Church's condition, [or revenue,] in those times.

"Of contentions about these matters there was no end, neither appeared there any possible way for quietness, otherwise than by making partition of the Church revenues, according to the several ends and uses for which they did serve; so that the Bishop's part might be certain [or fixed.] Such partition being agreed upon, and made, and the whole yearly rents and revenues of the Church divided into four equal parts or quarters:

"1. The Bishop was allotted one part, and enjoyed his portion several [or separate] to himself; 2. the rest of the clergy another; 3. a third was severed [or set aside] to the furnishing and upholding the Church [or place of public worship;] 4. and a fourth to the erection and maintenance of [alms] houses, wherein the poor might have relief *.

This ancient division of the revenues of the Church, for sacred uses, was founded in consummate wisdom and policy. One quarter was allotted to the Bishop, in order to enable him the better to support his rank, and to exercise hospitality; for it was usual for the Bishop to keep a public table, at which a certain number of the dignitaries and most respectable of the clergy lived or commoned with him, such as the Dean and Chapter, whose prebendal houses, therefore, were usually built near the Bishop's palace and the Cathedral, in the collegiate style.


This proportion was also warranted by the revenues of the High Priest under THE To him was allotted the tenth or tythe of all the Priests' and Levites' tythes, offerings, and incomes, consisting of the choice or best part thereof. And Phineas, the High Priest, had, moreover, lands allotted to him by the state, in Mount Ephraim, for his public services in the Moabite idolatry, &c. Numb. xxv. 11; Josh. xxiv. 33. See

"After this separation [was] made, lands and livings began to be dedicated every day unto each use severally, by means

the foregoing articles of the Priest's maintenance, Vol. II. p. 243, and division of lands, Vol. II. p. 267, &c. We are, therefore, warranted to reckon that the High Priest's revenue was a fourth part at least of what all the Priests and Levites together enjoyed, whose number was large in proportion to the extent of the Holy Land, 22000 in the time of Moses, Numb. iii. 34; iv. 3, and 30000 in the time of David, 1 Chron. xxiii. 3. Hooker rates it too low, at a seventh or eighth part, p. 379, for he did not take into account the landed property of the High Priest. And if we consider that the clergy, in the infancy of the Church, were not near so numerous in proportion as afterwards, we must allow that the Jewish hierarchy and clergy were amply and liberally maintained, and the Christian, even at first, not deficiently.

The other half of the ecclesiastical revenue, was divided between the building and repairs of churches and alms houses; and the support of the honest and industrious poor, when unable to work, 2 Thess. iii. 10.

Much as we are bound to praise and extol the blessed REFORMATION, which emancipated our forefathers from the spiritual tyranny of papal despotism, to the glorious liberty of the GOSPEL, we cannot too deeply lament and deplore that iniquitous and sacrilegious spoliation of Church property that accompanied it; and the lay impropriations, so profusely and unwisely granted at the suppression of the monasteries and religious orders, and the confiscation of their revenues, both in lands and tythes. These ought to have been religiously restored to sacred uses, as the patrimony of CHRIST; and the present generation has to rue the impolicy of the misapplication. The poor rates, which are now so grievous a burden upon the industry of the community, were created thereby; for before the suppression they did not exist, they were unnecessary; and it is now, indeed, difficult for the curtailed revenues of the Church even to keep in repair those splendid churches and cathedrals formerly built out of the sacred funds, much less to build new churches for the encreased population of the land. The consequences of this inability are truly calamitous already, and threaten still greater evils.

Nor was the warning voice of the first and greatest luminaries of the Reformation, and firmest pillars and bulwarks of the Church of England, wanting to deprecate and expose the evil tendency of these abuses.

1. The learned Bishop Jewel, whose Apology for the Church of England is so deservedly admired by the soundest divines, in one of his sermons, preached before Q. Elizabeth, (who, it is well known, gave at first but too much encouragement thereto,) had the boldness to notice these abuses, and to foretel their fatal consequences.

"In other countries, (said he,) the receiving of THE GOSPEL hath always been the cause that LEARNING was more set by ; and learning hath ever been THE FURTHERANCE OF THE GOSPEL: in England, I know not how, it cometh otherwise to pass, for since THE GOSPEL hath been received, the maintenance of LEARNING hath been decayed; and the lack of LEARNING will be the decay of THE GOSPEL."-" You," said he, addressing himself to her rapacious courtiers and favourites, you enriched them which mocked, and blinded, and devoured you! Spoil not them now that feed, and instruct, and comfort you!"

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2. The intelligent Hooker reckoned that what had been taken in his time, from the Church, in lay appropriations, was known to amount to one hundred and twenty thousand pounds yearly. "We rest," says he, "contentedly and quietly without it, till it shall please GOD to touch the hearts of men, of their own voluntary accord, to restore it to HIM again."- "What hath been taken away, as dedicated unto uses superstitious, and consequently, not given to GOD, or at the leastwise not so rightly given, we

whereof every one of them became in a short time much greater than they had been for worldly maintenance; the fervent devo

repine not thereat: that which hath gone, by means secret and indirect, through corrupt compositions or compacts, we cannot help: what the hardness of men's hearts doth make them loth to have exacted, though being due by law, even thereof the want we do also bear. All that we have to sustain our miserable life with is but a remnant of GOD'S own treasure; so far already diminished and clipt, that if there were any sense of common humanity left in this hard-hearted world, the impoverished estate of the clergy of GoD would, at the length, even of very commiseration, be spared !" p. 389. "Surely, wheresoever this wicked intendement of overthrowing cathedral churches, or of taking away those livings, lands, and possessions which Bishops hitherto have enjoyed, shall once prevail, the handmaids attending thereupon will be paganism and extreme barbarity [or barbarism,"] p. 387. And he thus remarkably predicted the ensuing Grand Rebellion *.

"We have just cause exceedingly to fear, that those miserable times of confusion are drawing on, wherein the people shall be oppressed one of another,' (Isa. iii. 5,) inasmuch as already, that which prepareth the way thereunto, is come to pass: 'Children presume against the ancient, and the vile against the honourable,' (Isa. iii. 5.) Prelacy, the temperature of excesses in all estates, the glew and soder of the public wealth, the ligament which tieth and connecteth the limbs of this body politic together, hath instead of deserved honour, all extremity of disgrace: the foolish every where plead, that unto the wise in heart they owe neither service, subjection, nor honour," p. 373. Bishop Jewel died A.D. 1571, and Hooker A.D. 1600.

3. The chief stay and support of the tottering Church at that time, under GOD, was Whitgift, Archbishop of Canterbury; who devoutly consecrated both his whole life to GOD, and his painful labours to the good of the Church, in the language of Cambden. He was in great favour with Queen Elizabeth, and induced her to put a stop to the breach that had been already made in the lands and immunities of the Church, and to maintain, with more care than she had done before, its remaining rights. Her prime favourite, the earl of Leicester, having abused his power, as one of the trustees of an act designed for the better preservation of Church lands, by preventing their alienation, the Archbishop withstood him openly to his face, before the Queen; and they both quitted the room, not friends in appearance. But Whitgift made a sudden and seasonable return to her Majesty, whom he found alone, and addressed her with great humility and reverence indeed, but with the spirit and frankness of an Apostle, in the following


"I beseech your Majesty to hear me with patience, and to believe that yours and the Churches safety are dearer to me than my life, but my conscience dearer than both; and therefore, give me leave to do my duty, and tell you, that princes are deputed nursing fathers of the Church, and owe it a protection: and therefore, God forbid, that you should be so much as passive in her ruins, when you may prevent it; or that I should behold it, without horror and detestation; or should forbear to tell your Majesty of the sin and danger. And though you and myself are born in an age of frailties, when the primitive piety and care of the Church lands and immunities are much decayed, yet, Ma

How highly Hooker's Ecclesiastical Polity was admired by Charles I. appears from his advice to his children, a few days before he suffered, to read it diligently, even next to THE BIBLE, as an excellent means to settle them in the truth of religion, and in the peace of the Church.

tion of men being glad that this new opportunity was given them of shewing zeal to the house of GOD in more certain order."

dam, let me beg that you will but first consider, and then you will believe, there are such sins as profaneness and sacrilege; for if there were not, they could not have names in HOLY WRIT, and particularly in the NEW TESTAMENT.

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"And I beseech you to consider, that though OUR SAVIOUR said, He judged no man, and to testify it, would not judge nor divide the inheritance betwixt the two brethren, nor would judge the woman taken in adultery, yet in this point of the Churches rights, he was so zealous, that he made himself both the accuser and the judge, and the executioner to punish these sins, witnessed, in that He himself made the whip to drive the profaners out of the Temple, overthrew the tables of the money-changers, and drove them out of it. And consider, that it was St. Paul that said to these Christians of his time, that were offended at idolatry, yet thou that abhorrest idols, dost thou commit sacrilege?' supposing, I think, sacrilege to be the greater sin: this may occasion your Majesty to consider, that there is such a sin as sacrilege. And to incline you to prevent the curse that will follow it, I beseech you also to consider, that Constantine, the first Christian Emperor, and Helena, his mother, that King Edgar, and Edward the Confessor, and indeed, many others of your predecessors, and many private Christians, have also given to GOD and his Church much land, and many immunities, which they might have given to those of their own families, and did not, but gave them as an absolute right and sacrifice to GOD; and with these immunities and lands, they have entailed a curse upon the alienators of them; GOD prevent your Majesty from being liable to that curse.

"And to make you that are trusted with their preservation, the better to understand the danger of it, I beseech you forget not, that besides these curses, the Church land and power have been also endeavoured to be preserved, (as far as human reason, and the law of this nation have been able to preserve them,) by an immediate and most sacred obligation on the consciences of the princes of this realm. For they that consult Magna Charta shall find, that as all your predecessors, at their coronation, so you also, were sworn before all the Nobility and Bishops, then present, and in the presence of GOD, and in his stead, to him that anointed you, to maintain the Church lands, and the rights belonging to it; and this, testified openly at the Holy Altar, by laying your hand upon THE BIBLE, then lying upon it. And not only Magna Charta, but many modern statutes have denounced a curse upon those that break Magna Charta. And now what account can be given for the breach of this oath at the last great day, either by your Majesty or by me, if it be wilfully or but negligently violated, I know not.

"And therefore, good Madam, let not the late Lord (Leicester's) exceptions against the failings of some few Clergymen, prevail with you to punish posterity for the errors of this present age: let particular men suffer for their particular errors, but let God and His Church have their rights. And though I pretend not to prophecy, yet I beg posterity to take notice of what is already become visible in many families; That Church land, added to an ancient inheritance, hath proved like a moth fretting a garment, and secretly consumed both! or like the eagle that stole a coal from the altar, and thereby set her nest on fire, which consumed both her young eagles, and herself that stole it. And though I shall forbear to speak reproachfully of your father, (Henry VIII.) yet I beg you to take notice, that a part of the Churches rights, added to the vast treasure left him by his Father, hath been conceived to bring an unavoidable consumption upon both, notwithstanding all his diligence to preserve it.

"And consider, that after the violation of those laws to which he had sworn in Magna

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