Irenicum, to the lovers of truth and peace heart-divisions opened in the causes and evils of them : with cautions that we may not be hurt by them, and endeavours to heal them
Burroughs, Jeremiah, 1599-1646.
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The fourth joyning Practice.

Never contend but be sure you understand one another what it is you contend for.

I Have read of a quarrell there was between the Eastern and Westerne Churches; the Eastern Churches said there were three subsistences in the Trinity, but not three persons; the We∣stern said there were three Persons, but not three subsistences. Athanasius comes and reconciles them both. It is true, the con∣tentions among us are more then verball, yet for any thing a great part of the Kindome knowes (even of those whose spirits are bitter enough) they may be no other then meerly verball. How many ignorant people, women, yong ones, understand not where the difference lyes between Presbyterians and those whom they call Independents; and yet they can with much bit∣ternesse cry out against the one or the other. Perhaps you have some Ministers, or others, come to your Table, they tell you a tale of such and such, your heart is hot presently, but do you understand the matter? You begin to make a stirre, but can you give account of it? Be silent, forbeare, take heed what you do; meddle not in way of strife, till you understand where the con∣troversie lyes, and that from both parties.