A treatise of original sin ... proving that it is, by pregnant texts of Scripture vindicated from false glosses
Burgess, Anthony, d. 1664.


HItherto the expedients thought upon, to ease that great difficulty about the propagation of original sinne, have appeared very improbable, and in some respect very absurd, like unwise Chyrurgians, not healing, but vexing the wound worse: We shall now proceed to some more probable ones, and dispatch them with convenient speed, lest you should think these are such 〈◊〉 upon which no grapes can grow, of more difficulty then usefulness; although you shall find, that even in this wilderness we may meet with Mona; The truth discussed will not only be for doctrinal Information, 〈◊〉 doctrinate Applica∣tion: The next therefore that I shall instance in, is 〈…〉 of those who hold, The soul is not by the immediate Creation of God, but〈◊〉, or mul∣tiplication; and this they are so confident in, That they 〈◊〉 Doctrine of original corruption cannot be maintained, unless we affirme so: Thus you heard Austin affirming, That neither by reading, praier, or disputing could he find out, how one could be defended without the other, It is true Bellermine saith,

That the opinion of the traduction of the soul from the parents doth no way at all either advantage, or incommodate the Doctrine of original sinne; but that the difficulty will still be as great:
so also Arminius (Thes. pri. de primo peccato.) maketh the dispute about the original of the soul, in the matter of the propagation of this hereditary defilement, unusefull and needless; But certainly, the clearing of the souls original is very influential into this point, especially because we are forced to it by the adversaries of this truth; for it seemeth very probable, that Austin would readily have believed the immediate creation of every of every soul, but that the dispute about original corruption was the remora: for he regarded not any other Objection. This opinion then, That the soul cometh originally from the parents; as well as the body, hath had its grave, and learned abettors. Tertullian of old, who wrote a book (De animâ); And as for Austin, it is true, he did not defend this opinion, neither did he deny it, he wrote four Books, (De origine animae,) against one Vincentius Victor, who blamed Austin for his hesitancy in this point; and in those Austin doth still persist in the same doubt, and doth answer those Page  190 Arguments, which are usually brought out of the Scripture, yet so as that he doth not determine against the souls Creation, but desired stronger Arguments, and therefore doth rebuke that young man for his bold presumption, in deter∣mining that controversie so confidently. Austin also (in his tenth Book upon Genesis ad literam) doth shew the same doubting mind within him, as also (in his Epistle to Hierom) wholly about the original of the soul, wherein he doth ear∣nestly desire of Hierom, that he would teach him and satisfie him in this point by strong and sure evidence, likewise he maketh the original of the so••, the subject of this Epistle to Optatus. It appeareth that Austin did more incline to hold the Creation of the soul, therefore he saith to Hierom, That although none can by wishing make a thing to be true, yet if it could he would by wishing have the Do∣ctrine of the Creation of the soul to be the truth: No wonder that Austin thus doubted, seeing Hierom saith, the greatest part of the western Doctors were for the traduction of the soul; But the eastern the greek Fathers, they did gene∣rally hold, the immediate Creation of it. In the latter daies of the Church, since the Reformation, there have also been eminent and able Divines, asserting the traduction of the soul from the parents, and thereby original sinne: Vostius men∣tioneth Johnius, and Marnixius: The Lutheran Divines seem generally to be of this opinion as appeareth by Brechword and Meisner; The latter whereof rela∣teth of Luther, that he should say, He would never trouble the Church about any opinion about the original of the soul, yet his private opinion was, that it was not by Creation; and they do pitch on this, as holding it most convenient to remove all doubts; although Meisner confesseth, there are even unanswerable Objecti∣ons, if they do hold the generation of it from the parents; But I must tell you, that those, who affirm the soul to be from the parents, as well as the body, differ amongst themselves, for some say, it is by eduction out of the matter, that it is generated, as the body: Others, they say, by traduction, that the soul is not corporally begotten, but the parents soul doth multiply the infants soul; even (say they) as you see one candle doth inlighten another.

In the confession of the Aethiopick Faith, as Hornebeck (summa Cont. de Gracis) relateth, it is affirmed, Omnes sine ullâ hesitantiâ in hâc sententiâ versa∣mur, &c. All of us are in this opinion without any hesitancy, that all our souls come of Adam, as well as our flesh, and that we are all Adam's seed both in flesh, and soul.