A compend of the controversies of religion wherin the trueth is confirmed, and errour convinced, by authoritie of Scripture, witnessing of antiquitie, and confession of partie. Most necessary for all, in this backe-slyding age. By W.G. minister of God's word.
Guild, William, 1586-1657.
Page  120

§. 2. That no man can doe works of grea∣ter perfection, or more, than God hath commanded, which the Papists call workes of supererogation. Bellar. l. 2. de Monachis, c. 13.

1. Authoritie of Scripture.

TO convince this prowde errour, it might suffice what is formerlie pro∣ven, to wit, if no man can obey the verie Law perfectlie, how much lesse is hee able to obey it, and more? yet let the Canon of Scripture batter this prowde Towre of ambitious Babell.


Iohn 6.38.For I came downe from Heaven, not to doe mine owne vvill, but the vvill of him that sent mee.

Note then, If the full perfection of Christ consisted in doing of God's will onlie, what blasphemous pryde is it, to say, That they doe more than God's will? for if it bee his will, then he hath commanded it: and if they doe their owne will, how dare they say, That their will is perfecter than the will of God?


Psal. 103.20.Blesse yee the Page  121 Lord, his Angels, that excell in strength, that doe his commande∣ment, hearkening to the voyce of his Word.

Remarke againe, That the perfection of Angels is placed heere-in, that they doe what by his word the Lord comman∣deth them. Therefore, what Luciferian pryde is it in man, to stretch his per∣fection further than the Angels?


Psal. 19.7.The Law of the Lord is perfect.

But if there bee rules of perfection aboue the Law, then it will follow, that the Law is an imperfect rule of holinesse.


Matth. 22.37.Thou shalt loue the Lord thy God, vvith all thine heart, and vvith all thy soule, and vvith all thy mynde.

Now what perfection can possiblie bee beyond that, which is commanded? seeing all the heart, all the soule, and all the mynde is required: and the Law it selfe is made heere the modell of all per∣fection, inward and outward.


Philip. 4.8.Finallie, Brethren, vvhat-so-ever thinges are true, vvhat-so-ever thinges are honest, Page  122 vvhat-so-ever things are just, what-so-ever things are pure, vvhat-so-ever things are loue-worthie, vvhat-so-ever things are of good report, if there bee anie vertue, and if there bee anie praise, thinke on those things.

Remarke then, That there is nothing that one can doe which is good, but may bee redacted to one of the fore-na∣med properties: and therefore there is no good thing that one can doe, but it is expresselie commanded. But indeed it is to be granted, that the popish works of Supererogation, are no-where comman∣ded, to wit, to eate the bread of ylde∣nesse, and liue an impure single lyfe, in their monkish Cloisters: in respect the one is injust, and the other impure, and both to bee hated, against the fore-na∣med properties.

2. Witnessing of Antiquitie.

FOr the remission of the sinnes of their brethren (saith Augustine) the blood of no Martyre was ever shed, which Christ onelie hath done for vs: not that wee should imitate him there-in, but congratulate for that which hee hath be∣stowed on vs. Aug. tract. 84. in Iohan.

3. Confession of Partie.

BEllarmine showeth, that not onelie Page  123 sundrie recent Divines of theirs, but also the Divines of Lovane, did teach, that the sufferings of the Saincts are no satisfactions, but that Christ's satisfa∣ction is onlie that vnto vs. Bell. lib. 1. de indulg. cap. 4.