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Books of the Old and New Teftament, of whofe Authority
The I. Book of Chronicles,
And the other Books (as Hierom faith) the Church doth
The III. Book of Efdras,
The rest of the Book of Hefier;
The Book of Wisdom,
Baruch the Prophet,
Jefus the Son of Sirach,
All the Books of the New Teftament, as they are commonly received, we do receive and account them Canonical, VII. Of the Old Testament.
HE Old Teftament is not contrary to the New: for both in the Old and New Teftament everlafting Life is offered to mankind by Chrift, who is the only Mediator between God and Man, being both God and Man. Wherefore they are not to be heard, which feign that the Old Fa thers did look only for tranfitory Promifes. Although th Law given from God by Mofes, as touching Ceremonice and Rites, do not bind Chriftian men, nor the Civil Pres cepts thereof ought of neceffity to be received in any Com
monwealth yet notwithstanding, no Chriftian man whatfoever is free from the Obedience of the Commandments which are called Moral.
VIII. Of the three Creeds.
HE three Creeds, Nice Creed, Athanafius's Creed and that which is commonly called the Apostles Creed, ought throughly to be received and believed: for they may be proved by moft certain warrants of holy Scripture.
IX. Of Original or Birth-Sin.
Riginal Sin ftandeth not in the following of Adam (as the Pelagians do vainly talk) but it is the fault and Corruption of the Nature of every Man, that naturally is ingendered of the offspring of Adam; whereby Man is very far gone from Original Righteoufnefs, and is of his own Nature inclined to Evil, fo that the flesh lufteth always contrary to the Spirit; and therefore in every Perfon burn into this World, it deferveth God's Wrath and damnation. And this Infection of Nature doth remain, yea, in them that are regenerated; whereby the Luft of the Flesh, called in Greek, pronema farkos, which fome do expound the Wilder, fome Senfuality, fome the Affection, fome the Defire of the Flesh, is not subject to the Law of God. And although there is no Condemnation for them that believe and are baptized ; yet the Apostle doth confefs, that Concupifcence and Luft hath of itself the Nature of Sin.
X. Of Free-will.
HE condition of man after the fall of Adam, is fuch, that he cannot turn and prepare himtelt by his own natural ftrength and good works to faith and calling upon God: Wherefore we have no power to do good works, withfant and acceptable to God, without the grace of God by Chrift preventing us, that we may have a good will, and working with us when we have that good will.
XI. Of the Juftification of Man.
E are accounted righteous before God, only for the merit of our Lord and Saviour Jelus Chriit, by
faith, and not for our own works, or defervings. Where-
XII. Of Good Works.
Lbeit that good Works, which are the Fruits of Faith, and follow after juftification, cannot put away our fins, and endure the Severity of God's Judgment; yet are they pleafing and acceptable to God in Chrift, and do fpring out neceffarily of a true and lively Faith; infomuch that by them. a lively Faith may be as evidently known, as a Tree difcerned by the Fruit.
XIII. Of Works before fufification
TORKS done before the Grace of Chrift, and the Infpiration of his Spirit, are not pleafing to God, forafinuch as they fpring not of Faith in Jefu Christ, neither do they make Men meet to receive Grace, or (as the Schoolauthors fay) deferve Grace of Congruity: Yea, rather for that they are not done as God hath willed and commanded them to be done, we doubt not but they have the Nature of Sin. XIV. Of Works of Supererogation.
Oluntary Works befides, over and above Gods Commandments, which they call works of Supererogation, cannot be taught without Arrogancy and Impiety, For by th m Men do declare, That they do not only render unto God as much as they are bound to do, but that they do more for his Sake than of bounden Duty is required: Whereas Chrift faith plainly, When ye have done all that are commanded to you, fay, We are unprofitable Servants.
XV. Of Christ alone without Sin.
Hrift in the Truth of our Nature was made like unto us in all Things, Sin only except; from which he was clearly void, both in his Flefh, and in his Spirit. He came to be a Lamb without Spot, who by Sacrifice of himself once made, fhould take away the Sins of the World: And Sin, as St. John faith, was not in him. But all we the rest, altough baptized, and born again in Chrift, yet offend in many Things; and if we fay we have no fin, we deceive ourfelves, and the Truth is not in us.
XVI. Of Sin after Baptifm.
every deadly Sin, willingly committed after Baptifm, is Sin against the Holy Ghost, and unpardonable. Wherefore the Grant of Repentance is not to be denied to fuch as fall into Sin after Baptifm. After we have received the Holy Ghoft, we may depart from Grace given, and fall into Sin, and by the Grace of God (we may) arife again, and amend our Lives; and therefore they are to be condemned, which fay, they can no more fin as long as they live here, or deny the Place of Forgiveness to fuch as truly repent.
XVII. Of Predeftination and Election
Redestination to Life is the everlasting Purpose of God, whereby, (before the Foundations of the World were laid) he hath conftantly decreed by his Counfel, fecret to us, to deliver from Curfe and Damnation thofe, whom he hath chofen in Chrift out of Mankind, and to bring them by Chrift to everlasting Salvation, as Veffels made to Honour. Wherefore they, which be endued with fo excellent a Benefit of God, be called according to Gods purpose by his Spirit working in due Seafon: They through Grace obey the calling: They be juftified freely: They be made Sons of God by Adoption: They be made like the Image of his onlybegotten Son Jefus Chrift: They walk religioufly in good Works, and at length by Gods Mercy they attain to everlating Felicity.
As the godly Confideration of Predeftination, and our Election in Chrift, is full of fweet, pleafant and unfpeakable Comfort to godly Perfons, and fuch as feel in themfelves the working of the Spirit of Chrift, mortifying the Works of the Flesh, and their earthly Members, and drawing up their Mind to high and heavenly Things; as well because it doth greatly establish and confirm their Faith of eternal Salvation, to be enjoyed through Chrift, as because it doth fervently kindle their Love towards God: So, for curious and carnal Perfons lacking the Spirit of Chrift, to have continually before their yes the Sentence of Gods Predeftination, is a most dangerous Downfall, whereby the Devil doth thruft them either into Desperation or into wretch
Wretchleffness of most unclean Living, no lefs perilous than
Furthermore, we must receive Gods Promises in fuch wife, as they be generally fet forth to us in holy Scripture : And in our Doings, that Will of God is to be followed, which we have exprefly declared unto us in the Word of God.
XVIII. Of obtaining eternal Salvation only by the Name of
HEY alfo are to be had accurfed that prefume to fay,. that every Man fhall be faved by the Law or Sect which he profeffeth; fo that he be diligent to frame his Life according to that Law, and the Light of Nature. For holy Scripture doth fet out unto us only the Name of Jefus Chrift, whereby Men must be faved.
XIX. Of the Church.
HE vifible Church of Chrift is a congregation of faith
ful men, in the which the pure Word of God is preached, and the Sacraments be duly ministered according to Chrifts Ordinance, in all thofe things that of neceffity are requifite to the fame.
As the Church of Hierufalem, Alexandria, and Antioch, have erred; fo alfo the Church of Rome hath erred, not only in their living and manner of Ceremonies, but alfo in matters of Faith.
XX. Of the Authority of the Church.
THE Church hath Power to decree Rites or Ceremonies, and Authority in Controverfies of Faith: And yet it. is not lawful for the Church to ordain any Thing that is contrary to God's Word written; neither may it fo expound one place of Scripture, that it be repugnant to another. Wherefore although the Church be a Witnefs and a keeper of Holy Writ, yet, as it ought not to decree any Thing againft the fame; fo befides the fame, ought it not to enforce any Thing to be believed for Neceffity of Salvation.