Page images

Pontifice, Gardinalibus, Archiepifcopis, Epifcopis & Regularibus, was cenfured by the Faculty of Theology in the University at Paris, as followeth, in ifta prima pro pofitione enumeratio membrorum hierarchie Ecclefiaftica feu facri principatus, divina ordinatione infiituti eft manca & redundans, atque inducens in errorem contras rium determinationi facræ Synodi Tridentina: The Propofition was defective, because it pretermitted the Prefbyters and Deacons; it was cenfured as redundant, because it made the Hierarchie to confift of the Pope, Cardinals, Archbishops, and Regulars; the Pope is not within the Hierarchie, Primates, Metropolitans, and Archbishops, but as they are Bishops. Furthermore, this Hierarchie is distinguished in the Confession from the Pope's Monarchie. And how beit this Hierarchie be call. ed the Antichrift's Hierarchie, yet it is not to diftinguish betwixt the Hierarchie in the Popish Kirk, and any other as lawful; But the Hierarchie, wherefoever it is, is called his, as the rest of the Popish Corruptions are called his: To wit, Invocation of Saints, Ganonization of Saints, Dedication of Altars, &c. are called his; not that there is another lawful Canonization, Invocation, or Dedication of Altars: Whatfoever Corruption was in the Kirk, either in Doctrine, Worship, or Govern ment fince the Mystery of Iniquity began to work, and is retained and maintained by the Pope, and obtruded upon the Kirk by his Authority, are his. A Paffage also out of the Hiftory of the Council of Trent was alledged, where it is related, that the Council would not define the Hierarchie by the Seven Orders: We have in our Confeffion of Faith the manifold Orders fet apart and diftinguished from the Hierarchie, but as it is fet down in the Canon above cited: We have in the Book of Policy, or fecond Book of Difcipline, in the End of the fecond Chapter, this Conclufion agreed upon, Therefore all the ambitious Titles, invented in the Kingdom of Antichrift, and in his ufurped HIERARCHIE, which are not of one of these four Sorts, To wit, Paftors, Doctors, Elders, and Deacons, toge


[ocr errors]

ther with the Offices depending thereupon, in one Word ought to be rejected.

All which and many other Warrants being publickly read, and particularly at great Length examined, and all Objections answered in Face of the Affembly, all the Members of the Alfembly being many Times defired and required to propone their Doubts and Scruples, and every one being heard to the fall, and, after much Agitation, as fully fatisfied; the Moderator at last, exhorting every one to declare his Mind, did put the Matter to Voicing, in thefe Terms: Whether, according to the Confeffion of Faith, as it was profeffed in the Year 1580, 1581 and 1590, there be any other Bishop, but a Pdftor of a particular Flock, having no Preheminence nor Power over his Brethren? And whether, by that Confeffion, as it was then professed, all other Epifcopacy is abjured, and ought to be removed out of this Kirk? The whole Affembly, moft unanimously, without Contradiction of any one (and with the Hefitation of one allenarly) profeffing full Perfwafion of Mind, did voice, That all Epifcopacy, different from that of a Pastor over a particular Flock, was abjured in this Kirk, and to be removed out of it: And therefore prohibites, under Ecclefiaftical Cenfure, any to ufurp, accept, defend, or obey the pretended Authority thereof in Time coming.

[ocr errors]

Affembly at Glasgow, December 17, 1638. Seff. 21.

VI. A refloring Kirk-Seffions, Provincial and Nati onal Affemblies, unto their Ancient Rights and Priviledge's.


He General Affembly confidering the great Defection of this Kirk, and Decay of Religion, by the Ulurpation of the Prelates, and their fuppreffing of ordinary Judicatories of the Kirk; and clearly perceiving the Benefit which will redound to the Religion by the Restitution of the faid Judicatories; remembring alfo,



that they ftand obliged, by their folemn Oath and Cơ venant with God, to return to the Doctrine and Difcipline of this Kirk, as it was profeft 1580, 1581, 1590, 1591, which in the Book of Policy, regiftrate in the Books of the Affembly 1581, and ordained to be fubfcribed 1590, 1591, is particularly expreft, both touching the Constitution of the Affemblies, of their Members, Ministers and Elders, and touching the Number, Power and Authority of thefe Members in all Matters Eccleftaftical.

The Affembly findeth it neceffary to reftore, and by thefe Prefents reftoreth, all these Affemblies unto their full Integrity, in their Members, Priviledges, Liberties, Powers and Jurifdiction, as they were constitute by the forefaid Book of Policy.

Affembly at Glasgow, December 20, 1638. Seff. 26. VII. Act concerning yearly General Assemblies.

He Affembly having confidered the Reasons lately printed for holding of General Affemblies, which are taken from the Light of Nature, the Promise of Je fus Chrift, the Practice of the holy Apostles, the Doctrine and Custom of other Reformed Kirks, and the Liberty of this National Kirk, as it is expreffed in the Book of Policy, and acknowledged in the Act of Parlia ment 1592. And from recent and prefent Experience, comparing the lamentable Prejudices done to Religion through the former Want of free and lawful Assemblies, and the great Benefit arifing to the Kirk, from this one free and lawful Affembly; find it neceffary to declare, and hereby declares, That, by Divine, Ecclefiaftical and Civil Warrants, this National Kirk hath Power and Liberty to affemble and conveen in her yearly General Af femblies, and other pro re nata, as Occafion and Neceffity fhall require; appointeth the next General Affembly to fit at Edinburgh the third Wednesday of July 1639; and warneth all Prefbyteries, Univerfities and Burghs, to fend their Commiffioners for keeping the fame:

fame: Giving Power alfo to the Presbytery of Edinburgh pro re nata, and upon any urgent and extraordinary Neceffity (if any fhall happen before the Diet appointed in July) to give Advertisement to all the Prefbyteries, Universities and Burghs, to fend their Commiffioners for holding an Occafional Affembly: And if in the mean Time it fhall please the King's Majefty to indict a Genesal Affembly, ordaineth all Prefbyteries, Universities and Burghs, to fend their Commiffioners for keeping the Time and Place which Ihall be appointed by his Majefty's Proclamation.

Affembly at Edinburg, August 8, 1643. Seff. 6.

VIII. At for Subfcribing the Covenant.


He General Affembly confidering the good and pious Advice of the Commiffioners of the last AfTembly, upon the 22d of September 1642, poft meridiem recommending to Prefbyteries to have Copies of the Covenant, to be fubfcribed by every Minister at his Admiffion; doth therefore ratify and approve the famen: And further ordains, that the Covenant be reprinted, with this Ordinance prefixed thereto; and that every Synod, Prefbytery and Parish have one of them bound in Quarto, with fome blank Paper, whereupon every Perfon may be obliged to fubfcribe; and that the Covenant of the Synod and Prefbytery be keeped by their Moderators refpective, of Univerfities by their Principals, of Parishes by their Minifters, with all Carefulness; and that particular Account of Obedience to this Act be required hereafter in all Vifitations of Parishes, Universities and Prefbyteries, and in all Trials of Prefbyteries and Synod-books.

The General Affembly confidering, that the Act of the Affembly at Edinburgh 1639, August 30. injoining all Perfons to fubfcribe the Covenant, under all Ecclefiatical Cenfure *, hath not been obeyed; therefore orN 2 dains

* See Page 114 for going.

dains all Minifters to make Intimation of the said A&t in their Kirks, and therefore to proceed with the Cenfures of the Kirk against fuch as fhall refufe to fubscribe the Covenant; and that exact Account be taken of every Minifter's Diligence herein til, by their Prefbyteries and Synods, as they will anfwer to the General Affembly.

IX. Defires and Overtures prefented from Presbyteries and Synods, with the Aemblies Anfwer thereunto. Affembly 1647.


Hat all Students of Philofophy, at their Entry, and at their Laureation, be holden to fubfcribe the League and Covenant, and be urged thereto; and all other Perfons as they come to Age and Difcretion, before their first receiving of the Sacrament of the Lord's Supper.

The Aembly approves this Overture.

Affembly at Edinburgh; August 7, 1648. Seff. 31.

X. Alt for taking the Covenant at the first receiving the Sacrament of the Lord's Supper, and for the receiving of it alfo by all Students at their firft Entry to Colledges.


He General Affembly, according to former Recommendations, doth ordain, That all young Stu dents take the Covenant at their firft Entry to Colledges, and that hereafter all Perfons whatfoever take the Cove. nant at their firft receiving the Sacrament of the Lord's Supper; requiring hereby Provincial Affemblies, Pref byteries and Univerfities, to be careful that this Ad be obferved, and Account thereof taken in the Visitation of Universities and particular Kirks, and in the Trial of Presbyteries *.


* See Collection of Acts, No. 37, 38, 39.

« PreviousContinue »