« FöregåendeFortsätt »
Chap. 3. be read, that is, without Prejudice. For if the Queft.5. Church, in her Decifions of Faith, errs against any Part of the Chriftian Revelation; She is not the Pillar and the Support of Truth, I Tim. iii. v. 15. She retains not the pure and true word of God in her Mouth for ever, If. lix. v. 21. She is not the true and pure Church of Chrift, against which the Gates of Hell fhall not prevail, S. Mat, xvi. v. 18. She has not thofe Paftors, whom our Saviour promis'd to remain with, and to teach all Days, even to the end of the World, S. Mat. xxviii. v. 20. her Decifions are not fuch, that he, who will not hear them, is to be accounted no better, than a Heathen and a Publican, S. Mat. xviii. v. 17. her Pastors and Teachers cannot fecure her Children against Error, Eph. iv, v. II, 12, 13, 14: She has not the Spirit of Truth remaining with her for ever, S. John xiv. v. 16, 17.
III. The Reader may here expect to fee the late Exceptions of Mr. Trapp, against the Application of the Texts abovemention'd, For tho' his moft diftinguishing Talent is owing to Billingfgate; and he feems frequently in the arguing Part, fcarce to know what he would have us think; yet his Replies to the Scripture are chiefly taken from others of a much brighter Genius.
First then to 1 Tim. iii. v. 15, he has four Anfwers. Altho' perchance if they had been good for any thing, a lefs Number might have ferv'd. ft. fays (16) he, it is far from being certain, that thofe Words, the Pillar &c.
(16) The Church of England defended Sc. pag. 102,
relate to the Church. They may perhaps relate Chap. 3 to Timothy; and it is the Opinion of very learn- Queit.5. ed Men, that they do.
ANS. Learned Men may be in very great Streights. And these certainly were, when they were forc'd to interpret their Bible, contrary to the Bible itself, and with so much (17) Violence to the Text, as could only come into the Heads of fuch as are in the utmoft Diftrefs. Dr. Hammond is more fincere, and tells us, that (18) of this House of God two Titles are bere fet down. The first Title, is, the Church of the Living God. The Second Title is, that it is the Pillar of Truth &c. But Mr. Trapp has a Second, and (as it is to be hop'd) a better Anfwer. 2dly, fays he, if S. Paul peaks of the Church; he speaks either of the Church in general, or the Church of Ephefus in particular, most certainly not of the Church of Rome.
ANS. Smartly faid, if it were either pertinent, or true. S. Timothy was not to converfe in Rome: And yet S. Paul fpeaks of the Church in Communion with Rome, which Proteftants call the Church of Rome. For when S. Paul writ this Epiftle an. Chr. 64, was not the Church in general in Communion with Rome, and with its Bishop S. Peter Was not then the Church of Ephefus in Communion with Rome? If it was; whether S. Paul speaks of the Church of Ephefus, or of the Church, in general, he speaks of a Church, or of the Church, in Communion with Rome, which Mr. Trapp K4 calls
 ἵνα ἐιδῆς .... σύλΘ κολο
Chap. 3. calls the Church of Rome. So that the third Queft.5. Part of his Anfwer evidently contradicts the two firft. It is certain, that when S. Paul writ to the Romans, an. Chr, 58, there was a Church in Rome, Rom. i. v. 7; and that the Faith of this Church was celebrated through the whole World, v. 8. Is it then MOST CERTAIN, that tho' S. Paul, writing to S. Timothy an.Chr. 64, fpeaks of the Church IN GENERAL; or of the Afiatick Chriftians,as joyn'd in Faith and Communion with the reft; yet he speaks not of the Church in Communion with Rome?
And that Mr, Trapp may fee, that his fecond Answer is neither pertinent, nor true; I muft defire him to obferve a Thing, which all Men know, befide himself: I mean, that thefe Questions are very different: ift. Is the univerfal Church infallible? 2dly, Is the Church, in Communion with Rome, the univerfal Church? 3dly, Is the Church, which is in Rome, the univerfal Church? To the firft and fecond Question we fay, Yes. To the third, we say, No. Hence Mr. Trapp's fecond Answer is moft certainly impertinent, whether it be true or falfe. For it is as clear as the Sun, that his Adverfary was only treating the first Queftion (it is what Mr. Trapp himself grants pag. 101) and was proving his affertion from 1 Tim iii. v 15, But instead of replying to the firft Queftion as he ought: Mr Trapp, as if he had been playing, as Children do at Cross Purpofes,thought fit to anfwer to the fecond or third and very gravely tells us, that the Church of Rome is not infallible, or that S. Paul does not Speak of the Church of Rome. This Impertinence the Reader will find at every turn through the
whole arguing Part of Mr Trapp's Book. Be- Chap. 3. fides, his Second Anfwer is not only imperti- Queft.5. nent, but most certainly false; if he means, that S. Pauli Tim. iii, v. 15, fpeaks not of the Church in Communion with Rome.
The third Anfwer of Mr Trapp is as weak, as the other two. And he had Reason not to infift much upon it. 3dly, fays he, By the Church's being the Pillar and Ground of Truth, may very well be meant no more, than that according to the Intent of her Institution, he always OUGHT to be fo, not that she always actually WILL be fo. Our Lord tells his Difciples, they are the Salt of the Earth; and yet fuppofes, that the Salt may lofe its Savour.
ANS. Is this then Mr Trapp's Comment on S. Paul, THE CHURCH IS, that is, THE CHURCH Is NOT, but only ought to be, the Pillar and the Support of Truth? And why may not Infidels fay in the fame manner, S. PAUL IS (that is, HE IS NOT, but only ought to be, in whatever he writes) a Teacher of Truth? For the plain and obvious Senfe of his words, 1 Tim iii. v 15, (from which they cannot be wrested without Sophiftry and Prejudice) is that there are two Properties or Titles of the House of God. The first, that it is the Church of the living God. The Second, that it is the Pillar and the Support of Truth. And Mr Trapp, I prefume, is not to be taught, that Properties in rigour are infeparable from the Thing itfelf. So that THE HOUSE OF GOD (that is, the whole Society of orthodox Chriftians, or the Afiatick Chriftians as agreeing with the reft in Faith and Communion) can no more ceafe to be the Pillar and the Support of Truth, than
Chap. 3.than it can ceafe to be the Church of the living Queft.5. God. Mr Trapp's Inftance of Salt is very infipid. The Difciplés, by receiving the Holy Ghost Acts ii, v 4, became most effectually the Light of the World, and the Salt of the Earth. Before this they were like other Men, and both might and did lofe their Savour. Judas hang'd himself. Peter deny'd his Master. All the Apostles forfook him, S, Mat. xxvi, ₪ 56: It is therefore undeniably evi ent in the Scripture, in what manner the Disciples were call'd the Light of the World, and the Salt of the Earth. S Mat. v, v, 13, 14. And when Mr Trapp has given us as great Evidence of the Fall of the Catholick Church, as S. Matthew has done of the Fall of St Peter, S. Mat. xxvi, v. 74, I promise to Subscribe to his third Anfwer: Tho' I perceive he does not much like it. But the next will make full Amends.
4thly, fays he, and chiefly, the Church may maintain all neceffary Truth, and yet propofe FALSE DOCTRINES, and Terms of Communion INCONSISTENT WITH SALVATION She may therefore be the Pillar and Support of the Truth, without being an unerring Guide, or fa much as free from GREAT AND GRIEVOUS ERRORS, page 102, 103.
ANS. If the chief and beft Anfwer be Nonfenfe, wo be to all the rest. And is it not evidently Nonsense (give me leave to use Mr Trapp's familiar Words) to fuppofe, that the fame Church, at the fame Time, is the Pillar and the Support of Truth, and that it falls into GREAT AND GRIEVOUS ERRORS ? Is it not evidently Nonfenfe to fuppofe, that the fame Church, at the very fame Time, may maintain