The 37. motiue hath neuer a demaund that I can aptly referre vnto it.
The Popish church hath not only bene ye only known * church and vndoubted mother of Christes children for these thousand yeares. First because it is not of so many yeares continuaunce, the mysterie of iniquitie hauing not bene in highest degree of wickednesse before the councell of Constance, where notwithstanding the in∣stitution of Christ and the practise of the primitiue church, the communion of the Lordes bloud was taken from the people. Secondly the Popish church was ne∣uer acknowledged by all the true children of Christes church, for their mother, which was a steppemother and a persecuter of them. Thirdly the Popish church Page 103 was neuer ye only reputed church or mother of Christs children, of all them that professe Christianitie for the churches of the East, as great and as large as she was in the West, woulde neuer so accompt the Popish steppe∣dame of Rome, but did separate them selues from her communion. Fourthly the Catholike church of Christes members dispersed ouer all the world, vnder the tyran∣ny both of the Turke & the Pope, haue in all times pro∣tested, that ye Romish Apostolical synagoge, is the whore of Babylon and see of Antichrist.
The places of Mich. 4. and Esa 61. which he citeth to proue that the church must be alwayes visible, you shall finde aunswered with many other in mine ouerthrow of Stapletons fortres lib. 1. cap. 13. And wheras Bristow con∣fesseth, that a mist may hide an hil that is neuer so high, from some wicked sighted men that are without it, but neuer from them that are within it, no merua•le if the spirituall church of Christ, being lifted vp aboue the top of all hills, not in worldly glory, but euen vnto heauenly dignitie, hath long remained hid from them, that haue no spirituall eyes at all. But Bristow thinketh it straūge, that a mist should continue a thousand yeres together. Then I aske him what hath hindered the greatest parte of all the worlde, seduced by Mahometistrie and Gen∣tilitie that for these thousand yeres they haue not seene the height of the Popish church. If he say not a mist a∣bout their church but a blindnesse in the others eyes to be the cause, the same I aunswere for the Catholike dispersed church of Christ, which the Papistes pretend that this thousand yeares they could not see. Although as I haue often sayd, Papistry is not halfe so olde in the greatest heresies and absurdities, which now she mayn∣teyneth.