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Things pertaining to faith and salvation were, indeed, determined by the Apostles through divine inspiration; but in other things they often used their own discretion, which St. Paul intimates in 1 Cor. vii. 25.
You know, also, what is commonly answered whenever instances are alleged of Bishops placed by the Apostles in a station above Presbyters: namely, that they held the opersia, not as Bishops, but as Evangelists, of whose pre-eminence above Pastors Chrysostom has some intimation in his Homily on Ephes, iv. What weight there is in this, I would submit to be decided by your judgment rather than by that of any one else. Certainly Ambrose, on the same passage, considers Evangelists as inferior to members of the Priesthood, and as without any see. Still, whatever title is given to Titus, Timothy, and Mark, whether that of Bishops or Evangelists, it is plain that they had Bishops for their successors and inheritors of their pre-eminence.
I think, then, that our Churches are defective in a point of divine right, but in such a way that they are not to be excluded from the hope of salvation, and that you grant that eternal life may be attained under our Church polity. This is what you at length allowed to appear in your second letter, to deal compassionately with us. But in your first letter, in which you are more diffuse, you class us with Aerius, who, you say, was deservedly placed in the black book of heretics on this charge. Here, illustrious man, I appeal to your benevolence. Consider the strait into which you are forcing me. If it had been incumbent on me to speak as you conceive that I ought, I must then have accused our Church of heresy; after which it would have been necessary for me overtéačeiv, to have provided for myself, and to have abandoned my station. I could not possibly have said that the Episcopal rporacia is of divine right without imprinting the stigma of heresy upon our Churches, which have shed so much blood for Christ: for to persist, indeed, in rejecting things of divine right, and to oppose perversely when God commands, is plainly heresy, whether faith or dis
cipline be concerned. Moreover, if I had so spoken, I must have sub
verted that principle by which our religion chiefly defends itself against
Popery; namely, that things of divine right are sufficiently and evi
dently contained in Holy Scripture. I am aware that you would here reply, that it would have been more
safe and honest to have remained silent on these points, than to have been
borne away by an unseasonable passion for writing; the case being such —that I must of necessity offend either my own Church or your's, and perhaps both. Indeed, I should have preferred silence: I undertook my work reluctantly; I wrote only because I was urged to write. The Jesuit Arnaud, the King's Confessor, declaimed against the Confession of our Church in a sermon preached before the King, and besides reviled it in a virulent book, in which he exults beyond measure on this point, and bitterly rallies our ecclesiastical polity. This book, cried about for sale in the streets and public ways of all France, has given many persons extreme offence. And even before this all places resounded with the question; the pulpits, the market, the courts, the streets, and the very barbers' shops. This is the field in which every wanton talker daily disports himself. How eager was the expectation
of my book as an answer to all this insolence, appears from the fact, that in four months mine editions of it were printed. I could not then decline the duty thus assigned to me. And it was not possible to write with sufficient fulness on the question, without beginning at the signification of the words Bishop and Presbyter, and without treating of the origin of the Episcopal Office. In discussing this subject, I took occasion to speak honourably of the Bishops of England; I traced the episcopal dignity to the very cradle of the Church; I condemned Aerius; I said that the Apostle James himself was Bishop of Jerusalem; and that from him was derived a long succession of Bishops of that city. In short, I said all but this, that my own Church is heretical, a trampler on divine right. This I could not say, nor ought I to have said it. Indeed, if I had said thus, you would yourself have thought me deficient in prudence. I have nothing farther to say on the three leading subjects of our correspondence. You, however, have annexed an iriusrpov: I mean your opinion of the title of my work, which I have inscribed in French —On the Vocation of Pastors. These terms, you say, are innovations, and are used by none of the ancients in this sense. I know indeed that the term Vocation seldom occurs in their writings, and is not taken in this sense. But in our country we use it so : all French writers on the subject, whether of the Reformed or Papal Church, have adopted it. And in our language it signifies something more than Ordination; it stands for the office itself. If I had written in Latin, I should have entitled my book, De Munere et Ordinatione Pastorum. You also dislike to hear all Presbyters and all Ministers of the Divine Word entitled Pastors; for this name, you say, belongs to Bishops alone, according to the language of the ancients. But if this be true, most illustrious man, the Reformed Churches of France, Germany, Belgium, and Switzerland, are flocks without Pastors. St. Paul, however, (Acts xx. 17.28.) exhorts the Ephesian Presbyters to “feed the Church of God.” And St. Peter (1 Pet. v. 1, 2.) says, “The Elders which are among you I exhort—Feed the flock of God which is among you, taking the oversight thereof, not by constraint but willingly, not for filthy lucre.” And this exhortation to be diligent and to avoid filthy lucre is, doubtless, addressed also to the inferior Presbyters. I cannot, then, prevail on myself to think that those ought not to be called Pastors whom God commands to feed his flock. Again, if the Word of God be the food of the soul, I do not see why that person who dispenses this food should not be entitled Pastor. St. Paul (Eph. iv. 11.) makes this enumeration of ecclesiastical functions: “He gave some Apostles, and some Prophets, and some Evangelists, and some Pastors, and Teachers." If Presbyters labouring in the Word, whom the French call Ministers, be not understood by the word Pastors, I see not what place they can hold in this eumeration of the Apostle. Augustine (Epist. 59.") says, that the Pastors and Teachers are the same persons. Jerome, in his commentary on this passage, is of the same opinion. Vin
* Epist, 149. Edit. Bened,
centius Lirimensis, in his exposition of this text, makes no mention of Pastors, evidently because he comprehends them under the term Teachers, whom he calls Tractatores, who in fact were something different from Bishops. And that Bishops alone are Teachers, I certainly never yet heard. Ambrose is so far from thinking that the name Pastor belongs to Bishops alone, that he gives it even to Readers, “Pastors,” he says, in his commentary on the text above mentioned, “we may safely interpret as signifying Readers, who by reading the Holy Scriptures in the Church, nourish the people who hear.” The use of the name Pastor, is frequent among the Prophets, as the following references will shew you : Isaiah lvi. 11. Jeremiah x. 21. and xxii. 22. and xxiii. 1, 2. 3. Ezekiel xxxiv. 2. Zachariah x. 3. And if any one impartially and accurately consider these passages, he will find that under the name of Pastors, are designated not only the High Priests, or the Heads of the Levites, but all Prophets and Levites charged with the office of teaching. **
But a desire of satisfying you, and a ready supply of materials, are carrying me beyond bounds. I have trespassed too long on your leisure. My labour, however, will not have been ill bestowed, if it assure you of my high esteem, of my anxious desire of concord, and of my earnest wish that all the reformed Churches, associated as they are in one faith, so they may be also in the bond of one Ecclesiastical Polity. I pray you, give a favourable construction to my ingenuous freedom; which indeed will not diminish aught of the respect and honour which I am ever ready publicly to profess as due from me towards you. May God preserve you, and grant you health and strength in your old age, and increase of honour and felicity. Farewell.
Your Lordship's most respectfully devoted - PETER Du MOULIN. Paris, January 1st, 1619.
(To be continued.)
To the Editor of the Christian Remembrancer. SIR,
As you admit into your excellent Miscellany the discussion of every question, that can tend directly or indirectly to promote the good of our invaluable Church, I trust therefore you will excuse my calling your attention to a subject, which I apprehend is of no small importance, and which hitherto has not been taken notice of by any of your Correspondents. The subject I allude to is the state of our Parochial Church Music, whether it is such as tends to the “use of edifying?” and if it does not, whether any means can be resorted to, which shall be likely to promote its improvement 2 I apprehend it will be allowed by all, that whatever is admitted to be part of Divine worship ought on that account to be administered to the best of our ability, whether we eonsider the majesty of Him whom we are addressing, or the deep importance of the subjects which form the matters of our addresses. I mention this, in order to draw, if possible, the attention of men of abilities and learning to the subject, as without their help we can effect nothing; and I apprehend it has been deemed hitherto rather too much below their consideration. If, however, the above observation be correct, surely their aid is necessary in every thing (whether of more or less importance) that relates to Divine Worship. As my objeet is to draw the attention of your Correspondents to the subject in question, I will only add at present that I am, Sir, Your faithful humble Servant, A Constant READER. ---,
The General Monthly Meeting of the Society for Promoting Christian Knowledge, was held on Tuesday, March 1st. The attention of the members present was called to a very interesting communication from the Society for Promoting Christian Knowledge and Discountenancing Vice in Ireland. It appeared that the Irish Society had been prevented from availing itself of a liberal Grant of 1000l., to be laid out in the purchase and distribution of Bibles and Prayer Books, by a condition of the Grant which restricted that distribution to Hospitals, Workhouses, and Prisons. It was therefore resolved, that the Irish Society should be empowered to distribute Bibles and Prayer Books to the amount of the above sum, in any way which its Managing Committee might deem expedient. And the Secretaries were also directed to inform the Diocesan and District Committees, that the Society was ready to receive any sums of money which might be transmitted by its Committees from benevolent persons, in aid of the Society in Ireland, which appeared to be much limited in its useful labours by a want of funds. In the course of the proceedings of the day, the Lord Bishop of Chester took occasion to remark, that it had been matter of regret, felt by the Society, and often expressed at its Meetings, that from circumstances, with the nature of which they were not acquainted, the Society had not been favoured, by the Lord Bishop of Calcutta, with any communication since his arrival in India. This he considered to be, on many accounts, deeply to be
lamented; and the more so, because it was understood that the Bishop, in many of his letters to his private friends, had alluded to circumstances which could not fail greatly to interest the Society. It had been suggested to him by a highly respectable Nobleman, who was a very zealous friend, and had long been a most active member of the Society, (Lord Kenyon) that, in the absence of more direct intelligence, it would be useful and gratifying!'to the Society to be made acquainted with that information respecting the proceedings and observations of the Bishop, which might be obtained from his private correspondence; and with that view, by the permission of the Bishop of Calcutta's friends, some letters had been placed in his (the Bishop of Chester's) hauds, by the Nobleman to whom he had alluded; from which, with the Society's approbation, he would proceed to read a few extracts. His Lordship observed, that he was aware of the irregularity of the proceeding, and he very much lamented the absence of more direct communication from the Bishop of Calcutta, whose views and wishes, had he condescended to make them known, the Society would have been so desirrous of aiding to the extent of its power. But still he felt disposed to avail himself of the opportunity of imparting to the Meeting the information contained in the letters which he held in his hand, knowing how anxiously that information had been long expected. The Bishop then proceeded to read
several extracts from letters addressed by the Bishop of Calcutta to different individuals in this country, descriptive of the state of religious feeling in India; of the different obstacles which he found to the progress of Christianity; and also of some particulars in the conduct of the natives, more especially as respected the schools established and establishing for their instruction, which appeared to give him hopes of gradually introducing among then that improvement of mental cultivation, which might eventually open their eyes to the degrading character of their own superstitions, and dispose them to a favourable reception of the truths of the Gospel. The native schools in the immediate vicinity of Calcutta, set on foot by the Rev. J. Hawtayne, under the sanction of Bishop Middleton, formed a prominent subject of notice in the course of the letters; and it was highly gratifying to learn from them in what light Mr. Hawtayne is held by the children of these schools; amongst whom, the Bishop says, he is as familiarly known as a clergyman in this country among his own parishioners. We were much struck by the following passage, which points to one of the greatest impediments opposed to the progress of Christianity in India:— “Wherever,” observes Bishop Heber (we give his words to the best of our recollection) “our schools are established, the Dissenters set up their schools in rivalry, rather than seek out new fields of exertion, where they would not interfere with us. And they do more harm than good by the bitter and vexations manner in which they preach the Gospel, or, what they like better, insult the Church of England.” In some parts of his letters, the Bishop spoke with regret of a want of pecuniary resources to meet the various calls of religious undertakings in India. The Secretaries informed the Meeting that the subject had not escaped the attention of the Committee of the Society; that the native schools in the neighbourhood of Calcutta had been supported hitherto from a sum of money placed by the Society at the disposal of Bishop Middleton; that upon the receipt of the last Calcutta Report, vol. vii. no. iv.
from which it appeared that this sum of money was almost exhausted, the Committee had immediately turned their attention to the business, and it was resolved, by their recommendation at the General Meeting of the Society in January, to inform the different Committees in the East, that great inportance was attached to the institution of native schools, and that grants of money for their support would have immediately been made and forwarded, had not the Society already placed the sum of 1000l. at the disposal of the Bishop of Calcutta, and consequently presumed that his Lordship would have provided for their immediate wants. The Secretaries further stated, that this resolution had been communicated to the Committees at Calcutta, Madras, Bombay, and Ceylon, that they were assured the Society would do every thing in its power to support the native schools, and that the Bishop of Calcutta had been requested to take the schools and missions under his Lordship's especial protection. It appeared also, by referring to the Treasurers of the Society, that they had only yet received his Lordship's draft for 250l. of the 1000l. voted to him by the Society, to be laid out at his discretion for the promotion of Christian knowledge in his diocese. It was judged accordingly, that the Society could not at present do more than express its earnest desire at all times to contribute to such objects, as far as was consistent with due attention to its other important designs. Before the Meeting dispersed, the Bishop of Chester gave notice of his intention to propose the transference of the Missionary department of the Society to the Society for Propagating the Gospel in Foreign Parts. As the measure was one of very great importance, his Lordship said he would not press the subject on the present occasion; but he requested the Members would take it iuto their serious consideration in the intermediate time before the next General Meeting. The Secretaries intimated that, in consequence of the first Tuesday in the next month being Easter Tuesday, the next General Mecting would be on Tuesday, April 12. L l