Way Of Corruption [v0.14] By Shadow Blade
M. Perkins he saith, proposed but few places for them, and misapplied them to; and therefore he will himselfe set downe some principall places, both out of the Scriptures and fathers, in defence of their doctrine. But what ill hap had he at first to light vpon an example, whereby as Austin noteth, it is so manifest,August de ciuit. Dei. lib. 15. ca. 16 Spiritus sanctus operatur intrinsecus vt valeat aliquid medicina quc adhibetur extri [...]fecus. A [...]equm etiamsi Deus ipse vtens creatura sibi sub ect vinae [...]qua specie human [...] sensus alloquatur humanos, &c. nec interiore gratia mentem regat atque agat, nihil prodest homini omn [...]s praedicatio veritatis. Facit hoc Deus, à vasis misericordiae irae vasa discernens, &c. Et cap. 7. Hoc ipsum cùm Deus locutus esset ad Cain quid ei prosuit, &c. that howsoeuer God himselfe do speake to the sense of man, either to his outward or inward senses, yet if he do not by inward grace rule and worke the mind, all the preaching of truth auaileth nothing, and that it is the holy Ghost that must worke inwardly, that the medicine may auaile that is outwardly applied. [Page 128] Which is a worke whereby God putteth difference betwixt the vessels of mercie and the vessels of wrath; so that the question why one receiueth the grace of God, and another doth not,Prosper. de vocat gent lib. 1. cap 9 Pr [...]sun litas illius quaestionis per liberi arbitrij velle & nolle non soluitur quia licet [...]sit [...] bonum nelle, tamen nisi [...]na [...]um non habet bonū velle. is not answered by the vvilling or nilling of Free vvill, as to say, one by Free vvill would when God offered grace, the other would not, but by Gods working that in the one which he worketh not in the other, who both haue by nature to nill and refuse, but neither haue to will but by the gift of God; whereas with M. Bishop, the worke of God is the same to both, neither doth God make the difference betwixt man and man, offering himselfe alike to all, but man by Free will either receiuing or refusing, maketh difference betwixt himselfe and other men. God himselfe spake to Cain, yet was he not the better for it. M. Bishop telleth vs, that the reason was in his owne Free vvill, whereby he had it in his owne power, at his owne list to conuert and turne to God, and that God did signifie so much by saying vnto him, that the desire of sinne should be vnder him, and he should beare dominion ouer it. Where he should haue had regard for proofe of his doctrine,Aug. de va [...]t. eccles cap. 5 Hoc prae [...]ico at (que) propono, vt qu [...]que aeperta & manifesta deligamus. & ca. 16. Nec itae vt ea colligant & commemorent quae obscurè vel ambiguè vel figuratè dicta sunt quae quis (que) sicut voluerit interpretur ad sensum suum. Talia enim recte intellige non possunt, nisi prius ea quae aperissimè dicta sunt firma fide teneantur. to make choise of plaine and manifest places, as S. Austins rule is, not of such as being figuratiue or obscure, may be expounded and taken diuersly. There are sundry expositions of this place deliuered by the ancient fathers, and therefore there is no necessitie to vrge vs to take that exposition which he alledgeth. First Chrysostome expoundeth the place according to the true meaning thereof, that God hauing byGenes. 3.16. the same phrase of speech constituted before the superioriuie of the husband oner his wife, doth here yeeld to the first borne a superioritie and kind of Lordship ouer the rest of his brethren, which here he signifieth to Cain, he would not infringe, to giue him occasion that way of offence towards his brother, howsoeuer he accepted his brothers sacrifice better then his, albeit readie to accept his sacrifice also if he offered in the like sort as his brother did.Chrysan Gen. hom. 18. Ne putes licet tuum aeduersatus sim sacrificiū ob prauam mentem frat [...]s (que) oblationem acceptā hab [...]aer. in ob s [...]nā intentio nē quod ideo primatu te destituā et primageniturae dig [...]t trem à te an [...]erant. Nam licet honore ego illum proficatus fuerins, accepta (que) fu [...]nt di [...]us do [...], veruma [...]ē ad te conuer [...]io illi [...] et in ipsi [...] dominabet [...], At (que), post peccati [...] per. [...]to vt primo. [...] priuile. [...] gandeas, illunque sub tua potestate & dominio esse [...]ubeo. Thinke not, that because I haue refused thy sacrifice because of thy corrupt mind, and haue accepted thy brothers sacrifice because of his vpright and sound heart, therfore I will d [...]priue thee of thy superioritie, and take away from thee the honour of thy birthright. For albeit I haue honoured him, and haue accepted his gifts, yet his turning shall be to thee, and thou shalt haue dominion ouer him. And albeit thou hast sinned, yet I yeeld thee to enioy the priuiledges of thy birthright, and do appoint that he shall be vnder [Page 129] thy power and rule. Against this exposition M. Bishop giueth an exception, that there is no mention of Abel, neither in that verse, nor in the verse next before; but expresse mention is made of sinne in the next vvords before: therefore those pronounes (that are to be referred to the next words before) must needs be referred to sinne, and not to his brother. But if his skill had serued him to consider, that the Hebrew word there for [...] sinne. sinne is in the feminine gender, and the pronoune relatiues in the [...] the desire of him, or his desire, and [...]: ouer him. masculine gender, he would haue learned thereby to except against this exception, and rather say, that the pronoune relatiues must needs be referred to his brother, and not to sinne. And so the Greeke translators did take it, [...]. the turning of HIM shalbe to thee, &c. So doth Arias Montanus translate it, being himselfe a Papist, yet that way incomparably more faithfull then commonly Papists are, The desire of HIM shalbe to thee, that is, in thy power, and thou shalt haue rule ouer HIM. Another exception he taketh from S. Austins exposition of those words, who not acquainted with the Greeke and Hebrew text, and finding in the Latine the pronounes eius and illius indifferent to the masculine or feminine gender, not thinking it fit in such meaning as he conceiued thereof, to attribute to Cain a dominion ouer his brother Abel, construeth the place as touching sinne, and deliuereth two interpretations thereof, but no way according to M. Bishops meaning, nor any way fit to serue his turne: the more lewdly doth he deale, to make S. Austin the patron of an opinion, which as appeareth in all this discourse, he did so highly and inwardly detest. One exposition of his is in the reading of the words thus;August. de ciuit. Dei. lib 5. ca. 7. Potestitae intelligi ad hominem conuersionem esse debere peccati, vt nulli alij sciat quam sibi tribuere debere quod peccat, &c. Tunc enim dominabitur quisque peccato, si [...]d sibi non defendendo praesumpserit sed poenitendo subiecerit, &c. Ad te conuersio cius sit: let the conuerting or turning of it be to thee, and thou shalt rule ouer it; as willing him to turne his sinne vpon himselfe, to accuse himselfe thereof, to know that he was not to attribute his sinne to any other but himselfe, and therefore not to defend it, but to repent and to aske pardon of it, and that this was the way to subdue it, and to become maister of it. Thus God left him not, as he saith, vvithout a commandement iust and holy and good, but in him giueth example, as was before said, how the commandement auaileth nothing from the mouth of God himselfe, where he himselfe worketh not within, that which he commandeth. To this agreeth in effect the exposition of Ambrose, though taking the words by way of accusation, which Austin construeth by way of precept or exhortation. [Page 130] Am [...]r, de Cain & Abel li 2. ca. 7. In te reuertitur crimen quod ae te c [...]pit. Non habes in quo necessit item magis quam mentē t [...]ā arguas. In te ret [...]rque tur improbitas tut, [...]u princeps ill [...]us es: Ben? a [...]t, Tit princeps es illius. Et enim impretas mater quaedā est delictoram, &c. The sinne, saith God, returneth vpon thee which began of thee. Thou hast not wherein to blame necessitie more then thine owne mind, Thy wickednesse is turned backe vpon thee; thou art the beginner of it. Rightly doth he say, thou art the beginner of it; for impietie is a mother of sinnes, &c. Thus he maketh God in those words to accuse Cain of sinne, not to attribute to Cain Free will for conuerting vnto God. The other exposition of Austin is in reading the place,Aug. vt supra. Cum commota fuerit pars ipsa carnalis ad aliquid perperam committendum, si acquiescatur, Apostolo dicenti, Ne exhibeatu membra, &c. ad mentem domita & victa conuertitur vt subditae ratio dominetur. Ad te conuersio eius erit, &c. The conuerting or turning thereof shall be to thee, and thou shalt rule ouer it, vnderstanding sinne to be meant of carnall concupiscence or lust, and making the construction thus, that when carnal concupiscence is moued or stirred to commit any wicked thing, if a man rest and harken to the Apostle saying, Let not sin reigne in your mortall bodies; giue not your members weapons of vnrighteousnesse vnto sinne, then it being tamed and ouercome, is conuerted and turned to be in subiection to the mind, that reason may haue the rule and dominion ouer it. Therefore he taketh it, as if God had willed Cain to giue ouer that which by his owne wicked desire and lust he had intended, and if he did resist it, it should turne and yeeld to him, and whilest it was not suffered to worke without, it might be the better accustomed not to stirre within. Prosper bringeth these latter expositions all into one, as if God had sayd to Cain, Prosper. de vocat. gent lib. 2. ca. 4. Tuus hic error est, enum (que) peccatum; qui [...]sce & noli in insontem fratrem movert: ad te potius tua culpa reuo [...]itur. Noli peccato regnum in te dare [...]sed tu potius in ipsum sume dominatū. Paenitendo enim nec in manus facinus progredieres, & ab eo in quo te doles displicuisse mundaberis. This is thy error and thy sinne; be quiet, and be not mooued against thy harmelesse brother; rather let thy sinne be charged vpon thy selfe: yeeld not to it that it shold reigne in thee, but do thou take on thee the dominion & rule ouer it. By repenting thou shalt not go to any further wickednesse, & thou shalt be reformed in that wherein thou shalt grieue that thou hast offended me. Thus here is counsell and commandement to Cain, but no assertion of Free will, and by Cains going forward in his wicked course, we see that Free will auaileth nothing to true obedience, and keeping of Gods commandement. Now then that M. Bishop can find nothing in Austin, let vs see what Hierome hath to iustifie Cains example to be the maintenance of Free will. Hierome hath indeed the words and exposition which he alledgeth:Hieron tradit. Hebrat. in Genes. Quia liberi arbitrises, monto vt non tibi peccatum sed tu peccato domineris. Because thou hast Free will, I admonish and warne thee, that sinne do not ouer-rule thee, but that thou ouer-rule sinne. But that this neither helpeth him nor hurteth vs, it will easily and plainly appeare, if we consider what was accorded before betwixt him and vs. For we deny not Free will in morall and ciuill outward actions, as hath [Page 131] bene before acknowledged by him. For in vaine were education and lawes, and exhortations, and all precepts and directions of life, if there were not left in man a power to conforme himselfe outwardly to the prescriptions thereof. God hath left in natureAugust. desp. & lit. cap. 28. Non vsqueadeo in anima humana imago Dei detrita est. vt nullae in ea velut lineamenta extrema remanserint. Origen. cont: Celsum lib. 4. Impossibile vt eius imaginis lineamenta in totum delcantur. &c. some outward most lineaments, some vnperfect shadowes and portraiture of his image, for the preseruing of publike order and societie amongst men, which could not stand, if men for feare or shame, or other respects could not containe and bridle themselues from those mischiefes and villanies, whereto corruption of nature doth incline them. To this the words of Hierome are to be referred. For Cain wasChrysost in Gen. hom. 18. Sciebat ab initio quòd fratrem hic adoriturus esset, & ideo antea verbu repr [...] mit. now contriuing and plotting the murder of his brother. There was now no law to terrifie him from the accomplishing of that which he had intended, but God himselfe taketh vppon him to set before him the horrour of his fact, and to reclaime him from proceeding any further. If therfore we do with Hierome referre the words here questioned to sinne, God speaketh to Cain to this effect: Why art thou so much offended that thy brother is better accepted then thy selfe? why art thou thus moued with enuie towards him, and intendest mischiefe against him? If thou doest well as he doth, assure thy selfe thou shalt be accepted as well as he. But if thou do wickedly, if thou go forward with that horrible villanie that thou hast conceiued, know for a suretie, that thy sinne shall lie waiting for thee at the doore, and shall neuer cease to attend and follow thee till it haue brought vpon thee iust reuenge. Wherefore I aduise thee to giue ouer, bridle thy passion, be maister thus farre of thine owne affections; let not enuie carrie thee forward to commit so monstrous and vnnaturall a fact: it is yet in thine owne power, and therefore stay thy selfe, and giue no further way to this bloudie designement to be sorie when it is too late. Thus much and no more, do Hieromes words expresse vnto vs, and we doubt not but Cain had Free will as touching committing of this cruell act. For if some man had stood in his way with a sword drawne to slay him if he should attempt the killing of his brother, who doubteth but that it would haue made him hold his hands; which he could not, if he had not had in him power and libertie to forbeare. And if M. Bishop meant no more when he speaketh of Cains power not to sinne, if he had listed, we would acknowledge the same with him, but he would hereby prooue a Free [Page 132] will to good, whereto he saith Cain had the assistance of Gods grace, which yet did not infallibly draw him to good, but left him to his free choise, whether he would follow it or not. For proofe whereof there is no shew of any syllable, either in the text, or in the other testimonies which he hath alledged. For as touching grace, we find here none but that which the Pelagians spake of, to counsell and aduise him, whereas the true grace inwardly worketh whatsoeuer outwardly is counselled or aduised. And whereas he saith, that grace doth not infallibly draw to good, it is true indeed of his Pelagian grace, which consisteth onely in the commandement, but the true grace of God doth infallibly draw to good. Iohn 6 44. No man, saith our Sauior Christ, can come vnto me, August. cont. duas epist. Pelag. lib 1. cap. 19. Venire ad me intelligitur credere in me. that is to say, beleeue in me, except my Father which hath sent me draw him, therby importing that all that are drawne of the Father do come vnto him, that is, do beleeue in him, becauseDe praedest. sanct. cap. 8. Nihil est aliud quā donum accipere a patre quo credat in Christum. to be drawne of the Father vnto Christ, is to receiue a gift of the Father wherby to beleeue in Christ; so thatProsper. de vocat. gent. lib. 2. cap 9. Qui non credant nec trahuntur omni [...]ò. they which beleeue not are not drawne at all. Therefore our Sauiour addeth in the next words; Euery one that heareth and learneth of the Father, that is, euerie one that the father draweth, commeth vnto me. Now M. Bishops drawing leaueth a man at his free choise whether he will follow or not. He saith as the Pelagians did;August epist. 107. Libertate naturali si vult, facit; si nonuult non facit. Verse. 45. If he will, he doth so, if he will not, he doth not; or as the Donatists,Idem de vnit. eccles. cap. 9. Cum arbitrio libero homo creatus est & si vult credit in Christum, si non vult, non credit. if he will, he beleeueth; if he list not, he beleeueth not: if he will, he perseuereth; if he will not, he perseuereth not. These were the progenitors and predecessors of his faith. But the true drawing grace, finding a manHieron. a. li. Pelag. lib. 3 Qui trahitur non spote currit, sed a [...]t retrectans & tardus aut inuitus adiucitur. resisting, drawing backe, vnwilling, persecuting the faith as Paul did,August cont. duas epist. Pelag lib. 1. ca. 19 Quis trahitur si tam volebat? Et tamen ne [...]io venit nisi velit. Trabitur ergo mires modis vt velit ab illo qui nouit t [...]tus in ipsis hominum cordibus operari, non vt homines quod fieri non petest nolentes credant, sed vt volemes ex nolentibus fiant. Et lib. 4 cap. 9. Ex repugnantibus consentientes, ex oppugnant [...]bus amantes. conuerteth his will to the faith; of vnwilling, it maketh him willing; of resisting, it maketh him consenting; of an oppugner of the faith, it maketh him a louer thereof. Let M. Bishop acknowledge this grace, if he will speake of grace as the Scripture speaketh: this is the onely true grace; and this grace Cain was neuer partaker of, and therefore being left to his owne will, he did not what he might haue done, in giuing eare to the warning and aduice that was giuen him of God.
Way of Corruption [v0.14] By Shadow Blade