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1154 [1120]

K. Henry. 8. The Epistle of Volusianus for Priestes mariage.

as thinges of themselues dull and dead, much lyke as amongest the Philosophers their Materia without Forma, being therto adioyned. MarginaliaFree will likened to Materia. Grace to Forma. For in the stede of Materia, we may, after a maner not vnfitly place free will: and in the place of Forma we may set grace & the commaundement (which is the meane betwene them both, as a certeine instrument) to haue respecte to both: whereby the principall artificer whiche is God furthereth and setteth forward free will as a rude and dull matter, applyeth to it his grace as the forme therof. And lyke as the sayd Materia without Forma is rude and shapelesse, so free will is a thing rude and deforme, if it be not holpen with grace comming therunto, to moue it and to further it the commaundement commyng as a meane betwene them both in the stead of the instrumental cause, as is before sayd.

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Therfore lyke as Forma is in respecte of Materia, the lyke resemblance beareth free wyll in respect of grace. And agayne, as Materia is in respect of Forma, the same also is free wil in respecte of grace. And as the instrument serueth betwene the foresayd Materia and Forma, so doth the commaundement betwene free will and grace. MarginaliaFree will whiche after he calleth voluntarie deuotion without the law, and the lawe without grace, can doe nothyng. The instrument commyng and workyng vpon the sayd Materia beyng of it selfe ougle, rugged, and a thyng without all shape and fashion, doth forme it, shape it and pullishe it, & maketh it hansome, sightly, lightsome, bright and cleare: euen so lykewise the commaundement commyng and woorkyng vppon free will, beyng of it selfe a thyng rude, grosse, vnshapen and deformed, blynd and obscure, doth clarifie it deck it adourne it, bewtifie and lighten it throughe the brightnes of grace cōmyng vnto it, accordyng to the saying of the Prophet 

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Psalm 19: 7.

: The commaundement of the Lorde is bryght and cleare, giuyng sight to the eyes. MarginaliaPsalme 19.

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MarginaliaFree will and the law without grace haue no power. And as the matter and the instrumēt without the forme can do nothyng, euen so free will and the commaundement without grace haue no power to worke. For what can eyther free wil or the commaundement doe except they be holpē with grace both goyng before and folowyng? For grace sēdeth the commaundement as a messenger and minister to free will: the commaundement prouoketh freewill and styrreth it vp, as out of a slepe to do good workes, and leadeth it as a blynd man, by the hand, teachyng hym the way wherin to go. Whiche both if they be destitute of grace, are hable of themselues to do nothyng. And if they begynne, yet they procede not, neyther doe they performe or accomplishe anye thyng: and if they presume, it prospereth not, and is but labour lost. For where the commaundement commeth, eyther by man or by Aungell: and also where freewill is moued, prouoked and enformed eyther by the motion of man or of Aungell, yet vnlesse Gods grace go withall preuentyng and folowyng the same what is it hable to do? For when man was put in Paradise, what auayled hym the commaundement whiche he heard 

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Genesis 2: 16.

: Thou shalt eate of euery tree of Paradise but onely of the tree of knowledge of good and euill, thou shalt not eate. Marginalia Gen. [illegible text]
The commaundement without grace auayled Adā nothing in Paradise.
Whiche commaundement wrought not to hys saluation but to hys condemnation. And why? because grace that saueth and helpeth, was wantyng, which he presumyng vniustly vppon his owne strength, despised. Or what dyd the commaundement of the lawe giuen by Moyses, profite the people of Israell in þe wildernes, which lawe they refused to obey? Or what profite wrought it to hym whiche presumed to folow the Lorde of his owne free will and not of the Lordes callyng, saying vnto hym 
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Matt. 8: 19.

: Lord I will folow thee whether so euer thou goest. MarginaliaMath. 8. By these and many other places of holy Scripture both of the olde and newe Testament it may be proued that neyther the commaundement nor free will haue power to woorke of them selues, vnlesse they be holpen by Gods grace preuentyng & folowyng them.

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MarginaliaContinencie only the gifte of God. Seyng therefore the gift of continencie, as al other giftes be, is the gift onely of Gods grace, and commeth not by the commaundement nor by free will: they erre therfore & stryue in vayne whiche labour to obteyne it by theyr owne power. And much more they also do erre, whiche by force constrayne men agaynst their will thereunto, mouing thē to offer giftes into the sanctuary of God, not of their owne accord but by coaction eyther not knowing or els not remēbryng the saying of the Lord to Moyses 

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This is a conflation of Leviticus 22: 19 and 29.

: Seperate amongest you the first frutes vnto the Lorde, and let euery man of his owne voluntary and willyng mynde, come and offer the same vnto the Lorde. MarginaliaNum. 15. What is this, to separate wt you the fyrst frutes to the Lorde, but onely to waye and cōsider diligently in your hartes, and with discretion to laye downe and separate vnto the Lord, what wee ought to present vnto hym out of the treasure of our hart? For if thou offer ryghtly and doest not rightly diuide, thou sinnest. And what is to offer with a willyng and ready mynde, but as the Psalmist, sayth 
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Psalm 54: 6

: I wil offer sacrifice vnto thee willingly and chearfully? MarginaliaPsal. 54. And the Apostle sayth 
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2 Cor. 9: 7.

: Not grudgingly or of necessitie: for God loueth a cherefull geuer. Marginalia[illegible text] Cor. [illegible text] And Salomon sayth 
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Ecc. 35: 8-10.

: Geue the lord his glory with a good and free hart, and in euery gift thou geuest, shew a ioyfull countenaunce, and sanctifie thy tithes with gladnes: and with a cherefull eye do all that thou takest in hand. MarginaliaEccle. 35. And the Apostle Iames sayth 
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This a loose quotation of James 1: 5.

: The Lord loueth not constrayned seruice And 
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Jeremiah 48: 10.

cursed be he that doth the worke of the Lord negligently, MarginaliaIerem. 48. that is not carefully and with a willing mynde.

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Wherfore, as the Lord willeth vs not to offer anything to hym agaynst our willes: so doth hee forbid vs to compell any man to offer any thing agaynst theyr willes by the foresayd Moyses where he sayth 

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Lev. 19: 13.

: Thou shalt not do thy neighbour wronge, neither oppresse hym with violence. MarginaliaLeuit. 9. To doe wrong to thy neighbour, is to correct hym for hys synne, not of any compassiō or mercy towardes hym, but to reproue hym and to accuse him in disdainyng, vpbrayding, and rebukyng hym: not to informe hym in the spirite of leuitie: but to destroy hym in the spirite of bitternes and rigour, as the Apostle sayth 
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Gal. 6: 1.

: If a man be taken in any faulte, you that are spirituall informe such in the spirite of leuitie, cōsidering thy selfe lest thou also be tempted. MarginaliaGal. 6.

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To oppresse our neighbour with violence, is to exact any thing of him aboue his power, and to lay vpon him more then he is able to beare, and more peraduenture then they thēselues are able to weelde which lay it vpon him: Where as the Lord speaking of the Phariseis to his disciples, forbiddeth them the same, saieng 

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Matt. 23: 2.

: The Scribes and Phariseys do sit vpon the chayre of Moyses. &c. And the Apostle Peter 
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1 Pet. 5: 2.

: Feede (saith he) as much as in you lyeth, the Lordes flocke, prouidyng for them, not by constraint, but willingly after a godly sorte, and not for filthy lucre, but of a ready mynd: not as though ye were Lordes ouer the Clergy, but be you as an example to the flocke of good wyll. Marginalia1. Pet. 3.

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MarginaliaLordship ouer the cleargie forefended This shepheard of shepheardes and Prince of the Apostles doth playnely and euidently declare and insinuate what all other Pastours and Apostles ought to do: how to entreate the flocke of the Lord committed vnto them, and what great care and compassion of mynde they ought to haue towardes their Cure: and remoueth farre out of their harts all power of Tyrannicall Lordshyp and all ambition, whiche some do exercise with gredynes vpon those that are committed to their charge, and pronoūceth that they ought not to be Lordes, but fathers ouer their flocke: and not imperiously to commaunde them, as exercising stately authoritie and power vpon them, but gently to admonishe them and beseech them in the zeale of pietie, accordyng to the strength of euery person, after the Lord, and not after the affection of their owne will, or ambiciously settyng forth their owne power and iurisdiction, not & that they ought to be an example to the flocke, doyng first themselues that thyng, whiche they commaunde others, and so to teach them no lesse by examples then by wordes. Willingly (saith he) and not by constraynt: of charitie, and not for greedy gayne. For there be many which beyng inflamed with affection, not of charitie, but of couetous gredynes and ambition, commaund others that which they are not able to accomplish, and while they pretend to seeke the gayne of soules, they hunt and seeke rather for wordly lucre. Which Baalam the Prophet 

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See Numbers 22-24.

did well expresse: MarginaliaNum. 22. who conuerted the gift of Prophecie, and the grace of blessing which he had receiued of God, not to the profite of others, but to his owne commoditie.

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And some there be, which whiles they correct others, they pretend to do it with the zeale of God: and whiles they would seeme to be better then other, this they do with a certaine presumption and rashnes, and so fall in their owne presumption and temeritie. Of whome the Apostle speaketh 

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Rom. 10: 2.

: Whiche haue a zeale of God, but not accordyng to knowledge. Marginalia Rom. 10.
Zeale without knowledge what it is.
To haue a zeale of God accordyng to knowledge, is to do any thyng in Gods matters prudently and circumspectly. Of whom Oza 
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I.e., Uzzah; see 2 Sam. 6: 6-7.

beareth a type and resemblaunce: Who whiles that he went about with his hand to stay the Arke of the Lord staggeryng a little by reason of the kickyng of the Oxen whiche caried it, fell downe therfore dead. Marginalia2. Kin. 6. The Arke of the Lorde to stagger or miscary by the kicking of the Oxen signifieth the lawe of the Lorde (which the Priestes thēselues ought to beare and hold vp) to be contraried of them in not obseruing the same, and to be turned out of the right course to the contrary part, MarginaliaOza punished for holding vp the Arke. which Oza, who is interpreted to be a helper of God, attempteth to hold vp. For there be certaine Prelates, whiche while they see the order of priesthode by some enormitie or excesse, to strayne the law of God neuer so litle out of the right course, and labour to redresse and rectifie that misorder, rather by vayne ostentation of their owne strength, then for any pure zeale to God, while they thus presume inordinately to do, thinking to seme to be the helpers of God, many tymes do mortally fall, and incurre therby great daunger and perill.

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Some other also there be whiche hauyng before theyr eyes no consideratiō of mans infirmitie neither beyng touched with any respect of mercy and compassion, nor know

yng
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