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God'prosper you in your Work and Business you have in Hand, that neither the Church, nor the Author Juffer.
Of Duels, &c. Preached at the Hague.
Saint Peters Fall. .
..then would my Servants fight, that I mould not
..Pfal. 36. t. I said (or resolved) I will take heed to my
2 Pet. III. xvi. Which the Unlearned and Unstable Wrests
as they do the other Scriptures, unto their .: Own Destruction.
THE love and favour which it pleased God to
bear our Fathers before the Law, fo far prevailed with him, as that without any Books and
Writings, by familiar and friendly converling with them, and communicating himself unto them, he made them receive and understand his Laws : their inward Conceits and Intellectuals being after a wonderful manner, as it were, Figured and Characterid, (as St. Bdful expresses it) by his Spirit, so that in Psal. 28. they could not but fee, and consent unto, and confess the truth of them. Which way of manifesting his will, unto many other gracious priviledges whicha it had, above that which in after Ages came in place of it, had this added that it brought with it unto the man, to whom it was made, a prefervation against all doubt and hesitancy, a full assurance, both who the Author was, and how far his intent and meaning reacht. W that are their Off-spring, ought, as St. Chryfoftom tells us, fo to have de- Hom. 1.in Mat. meaned our felves, that it might have been with us as it was with them, that we might have had no need of writing, no other Teacher but the Spirit, no other Books but our hearts, no other means to have been taught the things of God. Nisi inspirationis diving internam fuavioremque do&trinam, ubi sme fonis fermo
num & fine elementis literarum, eo dulcius quo I. 3. Epift. fecretius veritas loquitur ; as faith Fulgentius. 106. "Eyxanua 78 7wv osadenia Twy sa stall, faith
Ifidorus Pelufiota:. for it is a greater argument of our shame and imperfection, that the holy things are written in Books. For as God in anger tells the Jews, that he himself would not go before them as hitherto he had done, to conduct them into the promised Land, but would leave his Angel with them as his Deputy, so hath he dealt with us, thé unhappy Pofterity, degenerated from the ancient Purity of our Fore-fathers. When himself refused to speak unto our hearts, because of the hardness of them, he then began to put his Laws in writing. Which thing, for a long time, amongst his own People, seems not to have brought with it any senfible inconvenience. For amongst all those acts of the Jews, which God in his Book hath registred for our Instruction, there is not one concerning any pretended ambiguity or obscurity of the Text and Letter of their Law, which might draw them into Faction and Schism; the Devil belike having other fufficient advantages on which he wrought. But ever since the Gospel was committed to writing, what age, what monument of the Churches Acts is not full of debate and strife, concerning the force and meaning of those Writings, which the holy Ghoft hath left us to be the Law and Rule of Faith? St. Paul, one of the first Pen-men of the Holy Ghost, who in Paradise heard words which it was not lawful for man to urter, hath left us words in writing, which it is not safe for any man to be too busie to interprot. No sooner had he laid down his Pen, almost e're the Ink was dry, were there found Syllabarum aucupes, fuch as St. Ambrose spake of, qui nescire aliquid erubefcunt, & per occolinim obfcuritatis tendunt laqueos deceptionis, who thought there could be no greater disparagement unto ther, theu to keem to be ignorant of any thing, and un