What Mr Hooker fartherbringeth to prove that visible Churches consist of visible Saints.
MAster Hooker, pag. 20. The pinch of the difference lieth in this, whether such as walk in a way of profaneness, or remain pertinaciously obstinate in some wickedness, though other∣ways professing and practising the things of the Gospel, have any allowance from Christ, or may be accounted fit matter according to the termes of the Gospel to constitute a Church, this is that which is controverted.
Page 44Answ: This is a disorderly stating the Question after battl * given. 2. This pinch of a difference of men walking in pagan profaneness (for of such the question must be) whether they should be counted fit matter to constitute a visible Church, though otherwise they profess and practise the things of the Gospel, cometh to this, whether walkers professedly after their Idol-Gods, and yet professing and practising the Gospel, should be counted fit matter of the visible Church: We answer; Such are not the fit matter of the visible Church; and yet are not to be suddenly and wholly debarred from being ordinary hearers, so they profess their willingness to hear. 2. If the question be of such as are baptized and live within the Church as ordina∣ry hearers, who practise and profess the things of the Gospel, we say these are already within the Church by their baptisme and profession, and in regard they remain pertinaciously wick∣ed, though baptized and so professing, they should be unchur∣ched and cast out.
3. That any such as obstinately remain wicked have allowance from Christ, that is, a command to constitute a visible Church as members, is all one as to say, whether commandeth Christ men to be members of the Church, and to be also pertinaci∣ously wicked: which is no plous question, for it is whether doth Christ allow men to be hypocrites? Or if by allowance from Christ Mr Hooker mean, whether doth Christ allow and com∣mand the Pastors to own obstinate wicked men, as members, because they profess and practise the things of the Gospel? We answer, they ought not to admit or baptise Pagans of that sort, and if they be baptised, and so wickedly they profess, they ought to cast them out.