POPERY DISPLAY'D In its Proper Colours.
WHEREIN ITS Nonentity and Nullity Is Demonstrated by UNDENIABLE ARGUMENTS. WITH SEVERAL Remarkable Passages Relating to the PRESENT TIMES.
Humbly offered to the Honourable House of Commons.
By J. S. Gent.
LONDON: Printed by G. Larkin for Benjamin Harris, at the Stationers Arms in the Piazza under the Royal Exchange. 1681.
To the Honourable House of Commons, ASSEMBLED IN PARLIAMENT.
THis Kingdom, whereof God, your King, and Countrey have made you Keepers, as well as Preservers, cannot but see that nothing is wanting on Your Part. I do here but publish, Crier-like, the Unanimous Sence of all well-affected Protestants all over the World. Worthies, you are now engaged in a way of such Heroick Designs, as Posterity cannot but set the Stamp of Never-dying Honour upon You. Go on, and mani∣fest your Zeal for your Religion, and the Name of Christ, and he will not fail to manifest Love to your Souls. Your Acts are National and Just; Execute Judgment, and defend the Truth: Fear not the cruel Papists, nor all their barbarous Adherents: And let happen what will, say, Malo cum Christo ruere, quam cum Caesare stare; I had rather fall with Christ, then stand with Caesar. God and your King hath called You for such. Your Call is high, your Work is hard, your Difficulties many, yet Faith will carry You through all. You know why you have been born, not for your selves, but for the Benefit of many; Non sibi se, sed multorum uti∣litati esse natum.
You are our Deliverers, not only from Popish Idolatry and Su∣perstitious Foppery, but also from several other heavy insufferable Burthens. Believe it, most Noble and Renowned Worthies, all the Treasure of this World is no way comparable to your Pious and Just Designs. Yet I hold it not onely fit, but necessary, that your Liberties, Laws, and Goods, should still be precious in your sight; but be sure in point of Care, to exalt the Name of Christ (not the Pope) above your Liberties, his Gospel above all Humane Laws and Devices, and your Religion above your Lives and For∣tunes: Otherwise the Son will be angry, as well as the Father; and so great is the wrath of the Lamb, that the greatest of men cannot withstand it, Rev. 6.15, 16.Page [unnumbered]
The Great Councel of Jerusalem, when they sat, exercised most part of their time in Regulating matters of Religion, and in se∣curing of it; such hath been your Endeavours, such hath been your Desires in all your Sitting. It is Ingratitude therefore in any Degrees of Men not to serve You. We acknowledge the Infinite Mercy of God in calling You together at this time, when no less then our Laws, Liberties, and Religion, lies at stake. Your Work, I confess, is Hard, and Great, but yet 'tis Honourable. Whoever would not endeavour to save his Countrey and Religion, is no more worthy to live in it, than the man that seeks the destru∣ction thereof. The Papists have, dare, and will venture our ut∣ter Ruine and Destruction; and shall not we venture as far to save our Selves and Religion? Had men but Publick Spirits they would do it. The very Heathens have so minded the Publick Interest, as that they forgot Themselves: Publius Decius, the Roman Ar∣my being brought low, rush'd into the midst of the Enemies, de∣manding Safety for his Countrey, Death for Himself, and so occa∣sioned an unexpected Victory. There is no reason therefore that your Spirits should faint, or your former Intentions slacken, in fear of the issue. You are on the Right, and on the Rising Side; and in a Work that will Improve it self: In the Work of Pre∣serving our Lives, Liberties, and Religion; in the Work of Uni∣ting all His Majesties Protestant Subjects, though the Endeavours of many are so mighty to oppose, and their Tongues so malignant to disgrace it. But while You are faithful to God, Loyal to your King, and True to your Countrey, resolve to go on in Gods Name; knowing You must pass through Evil Reports, as well as Good Reports. The Lord make all Great Mountains that lie in your way, as Plains before You: Which is and ever shall be the Prayers of
Your most Obedient Servant, J. S.
THE NON-ENTITY or NULLITY of Popery, Demonstrated by UNDENIABLE ARGU∣MENTS, &c.
SInce a Shadow cannot produce a Shadow, and that by reason of Inherency there is a necessary Reference in every Accident to its Subject, so that if the Subject be wanting, it necessarily followeth, that the Accident is also want∣ing, as losing its Inherency, becometh nothing. This Assertion being as undeniable as two and two makes four, I proceed with reference to the more igno∣rant Protestants, not in a School dialect, (being Extra sphaeram activitatis) but in that method, whereby the most Illiterate may easily comprehend what Popery is, whose high Flight and infallible Power is maintained with the outward appearance of Sanctity, and the dread of the Inquisition, with the power and greatness of some Temporal Princes, which violently carries (where Popery Reigns) all things before it, with the impetuous stream of its own Torrent, teaching Sedition, Rebellion and Murder, for Apostolical Doctrine; having no other reality of Being to support their Profession (not Religion) composed of meer imagination and humane Invention, en∣deavouring to enamel and guild over their wicked Principles with many distorted and misapplyed Texts of Scripture. Nevertheless certain it is, that whosoever will ballance and weigh Popery with and by the Authority of Scripture, will soon per∣ceive, not only the fading splendor of Popery to resemble the light of a Glow-worm, which the nearer one comes to it the lesser it appears, till in the end it wholly va∣nisheth away; but a Profession, most blasphemously presuming to Create and An∣nihilate two Acts proper to God alone.
Some Popish Authors say, that the Priest by the power of Consecration draws (I will not say with a Rope) or invites the Body and Blood of Christ from Heaven; which is as ridiculous and as impossible, as it is to affirm the Priest to have power to Create a Corporeal Body at his pleasure, (I mean Christs Body) contrary to the ex∣press words of St. Paul, who saith, The Heavens must contain and receive him, until the time of Restitution of all things, Acts 3.20. And he himself saith, I leave the World, and go to the Father, John 16. The poor ye have always with you, but me ye have not, in another place, Matth. 29.11. What a horrible and prodigious Mon∣ster is this pretended Religion, that affirms Christs most glorious Body to be at the beck of the most licencious Priest, to be given and eaten by the most wicked, in a hundred thousand places at once. The same Apostle tells us, In the last days false Prophets will come, that shall say, Christ is here or there, and that he is in secret Cham∣bers, Matth. 24. Believe it not.
Now that I may the better shew this, the Romish Faith and Divine Faith to be as incompatible as God and Nothing, I must (since the Definition of every thing is the Touchstone wherewith men••try what other things can truly come within the Orb or Compass of the thing defined, and what not) lay down before you the Definition of Divine Faith, as the Apostle left it upon Record to Posterity, Heb. 11.
Faith is the Substance of things to be hoped for, the Argument of things not ap∣pearing: This Definition sheweth, that Faith is a supernatural Vertue, (and not a coactive Romish power) and that the object thereof is that, which through its own abstruseness and sublimity, cannot be apprehended or conceived by Natural Reason. To exemplifie this, Faith teacheth that in Trinity there is one peculiar Nature in three different Persons; no mans natural Understanding can apprehend how this Individuality of Nature can be in three Persons, without Distraction or Mul∣tiplication of the Nature, because every one of these Persons is identified really Page 2and formally with this nature, in the strictest union: In like sort, touching the In∣carnation, mans Reason cannot lay any true level to conceive, how one Hypostasis or Person can be in two Natures, or how this Hypostasis or Person is identified; for between Mans Capacity and the Nature of supernatural Faith, the proportion lies certainly and only in disproportion in matters of Faith: Reason dictates to us to believe things above reason, but never against reason, as the Papists affirm.
This Supernatural Faith hath a necessary reference to two things: The First is Pri∣ma veritas Revelans, which is God, who revealeth all Truths and points of Faith: The Second is the Authority of the Church, to reveal all those things and nothing more, which God hath revealed either by himself or his Apostles. Now let us ex∣amine, whether these two points so necessary to true Faith, do accord to the Papal Faith or not: As to the First, Prima veritas revelans, which is God, I freely appeal to themselves, whether their Principles of Faith be either revealed to each particu∣lar Pope by God, or found in Scripture; (namely, every Papal Decree to be as es∣sential to True Divine Faith, and as necessary to Salvation if Revealed by God, Purgatory, Adoring and Worshiping Images made of Gold, Silver, Stocks and Stones, in the nature of a God, praying to Saints and the Virgin Mary, with more zeal and eagerne•s than either to their Maker or Saviour, teaching Sedition, Re∣bellion, and Murder, as meritorious Acts) if neither, who will believe or say, but that Popery is a mere Non-Entity, or a bare Intentionality.
As to the Second Point, which is the Authority of the Church, in propounding to her Children the things by God revealed, we know and affirm, that the Church of Rome dare not publickly own to have received either from God or Scripture (though daily practised by Her and her Emissaries) the aforesaid Principles; the verity of this we have not only from Scripture, but from the ingenious Confessions of their most Learned and Ancient Authors. Mark withal, how these false Prophers, to serve as certain Veils or Curtains, to hide their hellish and wicked Principles from the eyes of the Ignorant, do forbid under pain of Ex∣communication the Reading of holy Scripture, the infallible Guide to Salva∣tion.
Thus far to demonstrate, both from the definition of Faith set down by St. Paul, and from the Points necessarily concurring for the causing not only of true Faith, but of Salvation; that Popery, in regard of its wanting these two necessary Points, is but an absolute Nullity of Faith and Religion.
For every thing that hath a real Existence or Being, may have its Nature ex∣plicated by the Definition of it, which consisteth of two parts, that is Genus and Differentia: The Genus doth comprehend the Essence of the Thing defined, the Differentia doth more particularly Constitute the thing defined, and distin∣guisheth it from all other things. For Example, A Man is defined to be A∣nimal Rationale, a Creature enjoying Reason; the word Animal demonstrates the Essence of Man; Rationale, that is, Rationality, doth Constitute man in de∣finition, and maketh him to differ from all other sublunary Creatures. A De∣finition extendeth it self not only to the Existence, or want of Existence in things corporeal or material, but also to the Being or not Being in things spe∣culative and immaterial; I mean in Do••rines and other such Theories of the Understanding. Now Popery, which in it self truly implyeth an absolute Con∣tradiction, cannot be thus defined, and is undenyably compounded of several Contradictories, and opposite Doctrines and Tenets, can have no being but intentionally, for whatsoever implyeth a Contradiction, supposeth a Being and a not Being of a thing, and all at one and the same time: From, whence this Absurdity must needs follow, that is, if such a thing could be, then could a thing be whose Being should consist in a not Being, consequently a Nullity.
This is Popery.
But to Contract this Point, I will particularly insist (as most conducing to Page 3the Subject in hand, and the time that Protestants can now afford or set apart to read, there being so many Pamphlets abroad) that the Reader may easily discern what mutual Recrimination, and what irreconciliable Repugnancy there is between the Papists themselves and this, even in matters of the greatest and highest conse∣quence; witness the many Books they have written, and the acerbity of Style one against another, even intimating thereby, that the different Doctrines differently maintained by them, were truly Contradictories, containing and defending diffe∣rent Tenets, so repugnant and contradictory one to another, that even by the Law and Nature of Contradictories, the one side must ever want a real and subsisting Being. Several Books written and allowed of in Rome, wherein many Principles of Faith, and the civil Power of Magistrates were controverted, with many Hereti∣cal Decrees, were by order of the Bishops and Councils of France, burned by the Hangmans hand; they also decreed, that the Church of Rome do vary from the sin∣cere Doctrine of the Scriptures, and yet now adays all are good Christians and Pa∣pists that oppose Protestancy, or cut Protestants Throats.
Now I close up this point, referring to the judgment of the learned Reader, how deadly Popery is wounded, not only by the Pen of Popery, but also by its Hellish and daily Practice. For the nature of true Faith (and true Christianity) exacteth, that it should be complete, entire, and perfect in it self, like unto an Action mo∣rally vertuous, which is accomplished by the access of all due conducing Circum∣stances, but vitiated through the absence but of any one. Many other contradicto∣ry Points by them maintained as Evangelical and true Popery, I here pretermit till better opportunity, and assure the Reader that Popery is no true Faith, but in re∣spect thereof an absolute Irreality, or an intentional Name or Word.
Thus much for the Nullity of Popery, and we say with the Prophet David, Thou hast saved us from our Enemies, and hast put them to shame that hated us: In God we boast all the day long, and will praise thy Name for ever, Psal. 44.7, 8. We are not only to praise him with high praises, with one heart and voice, and with the best of our Members, but also to pursue and strive to set up his Name far above all bles∣sing and praise, by praising him perpetually, by perpetuating his praises unto Poste∣rity; and by laying up such a stock and such a method of Praise, as may be of great use and importance to our posterity, when they shall both see and hear what great things the Lord of hosts hath done for this our Church and Kingdom. Gods wonderful Providence towards the safety of this Nation, and in keeping out Popish Idolatry, will undoubtedly, by some good pious man, be treasured up in one Volume, and trans∣mitted to Posterity, as a lasting Monument of Gods praise and Providence, as a me∣thod of Thankfulness from Generation to Generation, and as a true Record of Po∣pish Villany, that our Posterity may say with the Faithful in former times, We have heard with our Ears, our Fathers have told us what work thou didst in their days, in the times of old, Psal. 44.1.
Now as to the Remarkable Passages.
NEver was Action more conducive to the safety of this great Metropolis, the Ci∣ty of London, and the whole Kingdom, than to look back and remind the woful days of Queen Mary, and the burning of London to ashes, the bloody and fatal ef∣fects (never to be forgotten) of these two, are to be attributed only to Popery, and to that Man of sin that exalts himself above all that is called God, (the Pope of Rome): wherefore 'tis the hopes of A. P. a Member of the Church of England, whose Li∣turgy and Rites are worthy of admiration, that all Protestants of what perswasion or interest soever, unanimously conclude and agree to abolish Popery, as well Root as Branch. Several have proposed their Expedients for the abolishing of this hellish and venemous Root Popery; therefore I hope I may take the same liberty, and throw in my Mite also, being thereunto induced by the affection I bear my King and Country, as in duty bound.Page 4
The present State and the great fear of the Nation, of being overrun with Pope∣ry, and so brought to Beggery and Slavery, exacts an Angelical Spirit which ap∣pears the same as well in the dark as in the light, (qui vult capere capiat) and a Hercu∣lean Courage which is never to be daunted, and this (attributed to English men formerly) that you act upon all necessary occasions unanimously, in the preservation of your King, your Religion, and Property, like good Christians and English men. I say English men, because English men, when they embrace Popery and reject Protestancy, they lose their courage, (like our English Mastiffs when sent beyond the Seas) and in lieu thereof receive all manner of Villany. This needs no fur∣ther proof, than the Reading the Transactions of the last time when Popery Reign'd amongst us; then our Divines were butchered by the Name of Heretick Dogs, our Houses plundered, our Wives and Daughters ravished, our Churches erected for the true worship of God, abused, and converted into the Temples or Places of Idolatry and Superstition, to the great dishonour of Christ and scandal of Religion: Nay many of our Laity were torn to pieces, and tied to a Stake in the midst of flames at Smithfield, and other places. Can we then be so infatuated as to expect any bet∣ter entertainment than our Predecessors? No certainly: For besides that dreadful and barbarous entertainment which our Predecessors had from that Hellish and Popish power, we see and will mind that our apparent ruin is not only aimed at, and that without mercy, but that we are only secured during the life of one man, the Life of his Sacred Majesty, whom God long continue with this happy Parliament, whose Interests and ours are the same, and so united, that our Resolutions are the same. If the Plot takes effect (I mean the killing of the King) or the Plotters make a head, as in all probability they will, (being disappointed in taking away the Kings life) and if in the interval of Parliaments they happen to take off the King, we have no∣thing more to do than to destroy the whole Popish blood, who with all ingratitude and baseness attempted the Life of our Prince and all his Protestant Subjects.
Here we are to observe and believe, that there is no such thing as an English Pa∣pist who is not in the Plot, at least in his good wishes; and that it is a Maxim (nay a Principle of Faith) with all Papists, and especially with such as are in power, ne∣ver to keep their words or promises with Hereticks: (Some may here object, that some do keep their promises with Hereticks: I answer, that it is for Interest or Fear, and not out of Conscience;) Therefore whosoever credits a Papist, be he never so plausible in his Religion and Conversation, is never to be pitied when thus precau∣tioned. Observe likewise, how the French King, a Popish King, levyes Arbitrary Taxes at his pleasure, and imposes several other Tyrannical Oppressions at his plea∣sure. Now lest any should be ignorant, that any such like Distemper may not be much easier prevented at first, than when it has once got a head; it's sufficient to tell you, that the Pope and Papists are your mortal Enemies, and would fain Reign and Domineer over this Kingdom in the same nature as the French King doth in France. These are the men who exclaim against our Parliaments proceedings, and prevail with many others, not much better than themselves, in relation to the Plot: these are the men that endeavour to amuse as well his Sacred Majesty as his good people; alledging that there is no Plot, but rather 40, and 41.
I must acknowledge that there is some coherence between 40 and 41, and this present time; for as well then as now, the Popish and French Faction were the chief, nay the only Incendiaries which promoted and caused all the mischief of 40 and 41, which is well known to many, and especially in the Rebellion of Ireland, where so many thousands of Protestants were killed by (a counterfeit) Commissi∣on. Here they intended no less, but God frustrated their design, and insnared them in their own Net. The Papists in 40 and 41 as well as now, have allured many lukewarm Protestants to their assistance, which in great part supported their hellish machinations on foot ever since Queen Mary's days. Methinks this and this pre∣sent hellish Plot, should be a sufficient caution to all Protestants, and chiefly to all such as are in Power, not only to avoid and shun the Company of Papists, but also to ab∣horr the very Name and Interest of a Papist, and say with the Holy Patriarch, O my Soul, come not thou into their Secrets, unto their Assembly my Honour be not thou united, Gen. 49.6. I would have all true Protestants say thus, and profess with the Page 5Prophet David to Almighty God, that He was a Companion to all them that fear∣ed him, and of them that kept his Precepts, Psal. 119.63. What credit then can a Protestant propose to himself in keeping company with a Papist, much less in promoting or maintaining his Interest? For no Protestant can be so infatua∣ted (if not deeply concern'd in the Plot, or very ignorant) to believe that a Papist fears God, or keeps his Precepts: But since they are not all Israel which are of Israel (as St. Paul said) nor all Protestants that come to Church, as I wish they were, and there really appear what they are as well internal as ex∣ternal, and not lye sheltering themselves within the pale of our Church, and un∣der the wings of Protestants promote the Popish Interest: But they are easily known, for what our Saviour said of the Wolves in Sheeps cloathing, is eter∣nally true; By their Fruits ye may know them, Matth. 7.16. Having this infal∣lible mark and Divine Caution, besides several late past Passages (if well ob∣served,) nothing more doth concern all Protestants, than to United and Act as the Protestants did in Q. Eliz. time: The Papists forelaw they could do nothing, unless they could cut her off, therefore all their Plots and hellish Designs were calculated against her life as they are now against his present Majesty (whom God long preserve:) The Protestants foresaw that there was no end of their Plots and hellish Designs, till they would have cut her off, and consequently extirpate the Protestant Religion, if by some extraordinary means they did not prevent it; upon which they did by an universal and unanimous Assent, enter into an Association, by which they mutually promised to each other to repair to their Arms, and stand by and assist each other with their Lives and Fortunes in these three cases. 1. In case of the Queens death. 2. In case of a Foreign Invasion. 3. In case of any Popish Insurrection. Besides, they ob∣liged themselves one to another, whenever the Queen fell by any untimely end, they would revenge her death upon the Papists. This immediately put a stop to all their Plots and Designs against her; for when they saw the Prote∣stants were unanimously agreed on that point, (which is to be wished for now) and that taking away the Queens Life, was their total Ruine and Destruction, the Papists had soon done with their (Plottings: This, never to be forgotten Act of Queen Elizabeth's Protestants, and in an interval of Parliament, was so universally approved of, that she her self in the next Parliament confirmed it, and made it Law.
Now it's to be admired, how one Protestant calls another Rogue and Rebel, for subscribing or promoting a harmless Petition for the Sitting of Parlia∣ment, to redress the Grievances of the Nation: The Parliament having already stigmatized these horrid Abhorrers and strange kind of Protestants, never to be forgotten, and not worth my while to decipher their Popishly affected Crime, it being daily to be seen and read in their faces: I only tell them, that I am sorry that such are permitted amongst Protestants, for they can make as good Papists supposing Interest, as they are now Protestants.
These are the men that prosecute Protestant Dissenters, and if Popery were turned Trump, would willingly destroy all that would not conform to their Livery and Superstitious Levies, as they did in the days of Queen Mary; for it is very well known, that the professed Papists were no more able then than they are now to destroy they Protestants: No, it was the Protestant Abhorrers, that wicked Crew, the worst wretches, that turned Papists, and spilt the blood of all true Protestants, as they thirst to do with ours now: Of such Abhorrers as these, I would have all honest minded men and true Protestants, to shun and avoid their Company, and scorn their Society, with a juster indignation than a known professed Papist; from a known Papist you can guard your self, but from these miscreant Wretches you cannot; for they walk and converse with you as Friends, like deceitful and bloody men, and lye in the bosom of the Church till they sting her to Death, as they did in the Marian Days.Page 6
Now is the time, not to Dispute or debate much about a Plot (which is so evidently demonstrated and confessed by all, except those that are therein concerned) but to Act, and that with speed and universal Assent against Popery, and all its Adherents; otherwise England's Religion, Liberty and Property is lost. In this our Gracious King neither is or will be wanting, as he assured this present Parliament in his Royal Speech to them. Popery and all its professors,
- 1. Are Enemies to God by their setting up and worshiping of Idols as God, contrary to his express Command: (Truth hates Competitors.)
- 2. To Christ by their new found Mediators, and especially the Virgin Mary, whom they style Salvatrix Peccatorum.
- 3. To Scripture, by their many corrupt Traditions and humane Inventions, in imposing a belief upon all their Proselytes, not only to deny their Reason, but all their other Senses, to the great detriment of their Souls, and the dis∣honour of their God and Saviour.
- 4. To all Opposers by Fire and Faggot.
- 5. To all Government that will not subject to their Antichristian and Impe∣rious power, by Plots, Assassinations, Poysoning and horrid Massacres; these to be Popery's usual and common steps to worldly Advancement, to its support and propagating, is notoriously known, especially to this Nation, whom Popery (the common Enemy of Mankind) hath so often attempted, our ruine, and at several times hath been at the very point of effecting it; has once more with that great violence attempted our utter ruine, which I hope will be so order∣ed as to be their last Attempt; and if not, we are not to be pitied. The great Undertakers and Encouragers of this Hellish Plot, some have had their de∣serts, some are fled from Justice, and promise themselves good success in their Design; not because of the many thousands of Masses that are daily said all over the Papal World, for the prosperity of their Design; but because they have Friends in Disguise amongst us, as they most impudently assert, in our Courts, in our Armies, in our Navyes, (which I would not have believed, had not some late passages happened: Their Design is not to convert, but to kill, burn, and plunder; it being just and meritorious to extirpate He∣reticks Root and Branch.
But Blessed, be God, their chief Aim, the Killing of the King, whose only life is our safery, has failed, and so confounded them, that they afterwards resolved to surprize us and make a Night-work of us, as they did in France, Piedmont, and Ireland, in those most bloody and barbarous Massacres of poor innocent Protestants; but God notwithstanding the multitude of our sins hath hitherto preserved us (though design'd many a time to a total destruction) and discovered this impious and hellish Conspiracy, to the great confusion and shame of the Conspirators; he has also beaten up our Quarters, and given us the Alarm, if we will take it, as we ought, all things considered: We have been told, that not only our Forts, our Militia, but Scotland and Ireland were at a Papists beck.
Besides the great danger of being stabbed as we walk in the Streets, and of being burned as we sleep in our houses; witness that horrid murder of Sir Edmondbury Godfrey, the barbarous Assassination of Justice Arnold, and the dread∣ful Fire of London and Southwark, to which let us add, their unanimous assent and design in extirpating all Hereticks (as they term them) root and branch, by cutting their Throats, having no other way to propagate their Profession, that has nothing of Religion but the Name: therefore Gratitude nor Countries sake restrains not men of this stamp, their Principles know no Kindred, no Love, no Obedience, no Obligation to a Heretick but through blood, as the Murther of Sir E. G. can testifie. O wonderful! that ever supposed Christians should be so much the Children of the Devil; as first to Murder, then charge it up∣on the innocent soul Murdered, as the Papists most Impudently did and do; in him all Protestants were Massacred, no man is sure of his life a day or night; the choice is only what death we shall dye, whether be Stabbed, Strangled, Burn∣ed Page 7or Poysoned; this Consternation, in security, and danger of our Lives, must needs obstruct not only all Commerce betwixt man and man, but also deter Officers of Justice from their Duty and Obligation, and in fine dissolve all hu∣mane society, and reduce the world into misery.
How much then doth it concern all Protestants, nor only with unfeigned Re∣pentance to turn to the Lord, and beg of him that these Conspirators should be either Confounded and insnared in their own Nets, or diverted from their hellish designs: Not that this is sufficient, but we, ought as in duty bound, to pre∣serve our King, whom the Conspirators assert (blessed be God) is not for their turn; and make our humble Supplication to this worthy and English Par∣liament, to Vote an Adresse to the King, to Banish all Papists and all Popishly af∣fected, as well out of his Army and Navy, as the Cities of London and West∣minster; whose Villiany and Cruelty, one would think, sufficiently rendered them as uncapable of serving in our Armies, as in keeping humane and Common so∣ciety with Protestants, whilest poor and Innocent and dissenting Protestants are daily molested and pilledged for the sake of their peaceable Consciences, and Popish Rebels sheltering themselves under our Roof: is this to Maintain the Protestant Re∣ligion? No certainly, it is insupportable.
Therefore call for the Conspirators, look throughly and strictly into their hellish Actions; fiat justitia: fear nor favour no man, but fear Cod; do what you do as in his presence, to whom you must render an account; nay, or every idle word; 'tis the chief and most applaudable Action of your Life, to di•charge your Trust; that is, (if you will quit your selves like Men and good Protestants) preserve the Being, Liberties and religion of those who have intrusted you, by throw∣ing out Popery after the Bill, the only Tormentor and Plague of this Nati∣on: as you desire to see God in his Glory, and secure your selves from Po∣pery, Tyranny and Slavery, neglect not this Opportunity which God has so wonderfully cast into your hands unexpected; be not Despi•ers of his Care and Providence over you, neither be you careless or fearfull of Improving and Shewing your Power: Now is the time; for had they you (or ever will) at the same advantage, you nor yours should not long continue; therefore what before you would scarcely have done, is now become your Duty: Let not the Life of that Grand Traytor and Popish Courtly Secretary, who Trai∣terously communicated the secrets of our King and Countrey to all Popish Courts in Christendom, nor the Lives of five or six bigotted Jesuits, pass as sa∣tisfaction for this horrid and (never to be forgotten) Hellish Conspiracy: Not that I desire more Blood, but Justice, Security, and future safety as well for our Posterity as for our selves; otherwise it may be truly said of us, They saw and would not see.
You know that Popery marks all Protestants of what perswasion soever out for the same end, and esteems them as one body of Hereticks, equally deserving the Slaughter, as Bellermine affirms: All Hereticks are to be destroyed Root and Branch, if it can possibly be done: De Laicis, lib. 3. cap. 22.
Besides, all Hereticks are solemnly Cursed once a Year in Rome, and there∣upon the Papists in the several Kingdoms where the Protestant Religion rules, are not only discharged from all Allegiance to their Prince, but all are obli∣ged by the strictest bond of Conscience, and under the penalty of the utmost hazard of their Souls, to depose such Heretical Princes; and that they are so far from being Guilty of Murder if they kill any of them, as Ʋrban the Third, Pope, saith, that they are bound to exterminate all Hereticks, as they would be esteemed Christians themselves; Mariana saith, When the Common-wealth cannot otherwise secure and preserve its own peace and safety, it may by a right inherent in it self, declare the King to be the common Enemy, and then destroy him with the Sword. Leshius saith, that such a Prince ought to be deposed, and therupon it may be lawfull to attempt any thing against his Person. Pope Paul the fifth did not only Excommunicate and Damn Q. Eliz. and all her Protestant Subjects, but also Cursed all the Papists that should give any Obedience to her, or her Laws. All this one would think, should not only Page 8rouse us to Self-defence, Brotherly love and Union betwixt all Protestants, but also to determine, that whosoever opposed such, may be Judged to love Pope∣ry better than Protestancy, consequently an Enemy to the King, the Protestant Religion and the Government.
In reference to Self-defence, after a true Union is once setled among all Pro∣testants, it's most necessary that our Militia Officers, all standing Officers, Judges, and all Justices of the Peace should be strictly examined, whether they be men Popishly affected or not: if popishly affected, they are the most dangerous to be trusted, and the ready way to introduce Popery: the first have our Lives in their hands, and may cut our Throats at will; the second will never put the Penal Laws in Execu∣tion (if not against Protestant Dissenters) which is no less than to cheat the Government, and Invalidate the King and his Laws. Popery, and men Po∣pishly affected, (or in Masquerade) fear nothing more than such strict En∣quiry: Be not slow in this, (we will never leave you) for such ever since the Reformation, were our greatest Enemies, and chief Fomentors of Plots and Conspiracies. If you read of the Massacre of Paris, Piedmont and Ireland, with the Transactions acted upon this our English Stage within these few years, you will find this confirmed and much more, (too long here to insert) to your great satisfaction, and the Confusion of many great Courtiers, who for Inte∣rest have betrayed God and their Countrey: wherefore, if now after all these great Discoveries, Justice were not done on this wicked and bloody Generati∣on, who since they could not cut off the King by their Buliies, nor the Wor∣thies of the Nation by a Meal-tub Plot, intended no less than a publick Massa∣cre, had not the Wisdom of God, the Courage of the Parliament, who ever loved and honoured their King, their Countrey, and the Protestant Religion more than their Lives and Fortunes, detected their Villany, and put themselves with undaunted Courage between them, his Majesties Life and the Protestant Religion, to the great Terror and Confusion of all Papists in the World:
A Generation who put themselves into various Forms and Shapes, though never so Monstrous, to carry on the good Cause, and all tending to one and the self same end, the Destruction of the Protestant Religion; though the Villany and Debauchery of some is such, as to reckon every one either a Presbyterian or a Fanatick that appears more than ordinary active against these Papists: There is a duty and a great obligation incumbent upon all true lovers of the Protestant Religion, to Unite and Joyn with one Voice; and observe the words of Abraham to Lot, Let there be no strife, I pray thee, between me and thee, for we are Brethren, Gen. 13.8. Are we not Brethren? Undoubtedly the Papists Rage is equal against us, why should we Quarell then with our Brethren, who the Papists would destroy because they are Pro∣testants? therefore we ought to own and preserve them as such, and to give them all the Demonstration that can be, both of love and of laying aside all Prejudices and Animosities that either Papist or Devil can suggest to persecute our Brethren, who truly labour in the Vineyard, and Exhort to give Caesar his due, and to submit to every Ordinance of man for the Lords sake, whe∣ther it be to the King as Supream, or unto Governors, as unto them that are sent by him for the punishment of evil doers, 1 Pet. 2.13.
This infallibly will put a stop to all Popish Operations, though their Villa∣nies are of such a reaching magnitude, as if they were laid in the very depths of Hell, as undoubtedly they were.
The Romish Emissaries here in England doe not only operate by distilling Notions in Religion, but also in affairs of State (which is well known in all Courts in Christendom) and chiefly in the Court of England: witness the last unhappy War, that happened between the King and the Parliament, they were the chief cause and Fomentors of it, notwithstanding their great and pre∣tended Loyalty to King Charles the first, which they so confidently Boast of; nothing will appear more ridiculous, if you consider,Page 9
First, their commencing that bloudy Rebellion in Ireland, where so many. Thou∣sands of His Majesties Protestant Subjects were butchered, for which they pretended to have a Commission under the Great Seal: this caused and encreased the Fear and Jealousie of all the Protestants in England (as well it might) that the like might be designed against themselves: they also renounced all Allegiance to His Majesty, and owned the Pope as their Supream King. This obliged the Parliament to request of the King, such and such things as they thought most convenient and most conducing to his safety, their own and the Nations. The King finding it not fit or necessary to grant all that they demanded, proved to be one matter, and in part cause of the last War, and the fatal ill consequences of it; in which the Papists at first were very a∣ctive for the King, well knowing that the foundation and only cause of the War, was only in opposition to their Party, so that their Loyalty and Service to the King was meerly in their own defence, not out of any true Loyalty or Principles of Religion; for their Religion commands and teaches the contrary, as their practices, as well then as now, confirms, and leaves no colour of denial; so that I much fear that they will, as well now, as then, run the hazard of a War, thinking thereby to establish their Foppery.
Secondly, Their Fidelity and Loyalty to the King in the latter end of the War; when many of them revolted, and took part with Oliver; others laid down their Arms, made their peace with Oliver, and told the King they would never fight a stroke for him or his, is very well known. When the War was ended, and the King o∣vercome in the Field, it is evident that the Jesuits and Priests stirred up those Sons of Belial to Murder His Sacred Majesty; the Jesuits and Priests did also endeavour to encline the People to a Common-Wealth, and was at the same time very earnest with Cromwel to accept of the Crown, and offered him all Obedience and Allegiance ima∣ginable, but Cromwel knowing, full-well, that their Religion taught them, that no way was to be refused or slighted, though never so unlawful, whereby they might promote or advance the Church of Rome, slighted them, and kept them out of all places of Trust, and so much under, that they could never attempt any thing against him, or at least, they would not, though a Traytor to His King.
Now their Loyalty to this present King, evidently appears to the World in their many Attempts upon his Sacred Life; in their Hellish Designs; in subverting his Government, burning his Cities, and murdering his Subjects, and all this according to the Principles of their Religion: What Villanies will not these Monsters at∣tempt? what Interest or Right will not they invade? what so Sacred that they will not violate? what can limit them if they find opportunity to accomplish their desire? Miserable must that Nation be that will be subject to such inconveniences and poyso∣ned Positions, not only destructive to Publick Safety, but also to the Honour of God and the Glory of his Church: In declaring this, I do, in effect, also declare, That what has been these many years, and now is acting among the Papists, is an old Play newly revived. What the Papists did in the late times was laid upon the Phana∣tiques, the like was to have been done at this time: Just before the discovery of Dr. Oates they seized upon one Mr. Claypole and imprisoned him, for having (as they pretended) a design to Murder His Sacred Majesty, thinking thereby to convince the World, that Mr. Claypole, and some of the old Party had a Conspiracy to take away the Kings Life, that in the mean while, the Papists themselves might with safety do it, and lay it upon the Nonconformists, who in all truth and sincerity own their safety and peace to His Majesty only; for when Dr. Oates first discovered the Plot, Mr, Claypole was not only released, and his pretended Crime forgotten, but the Parties, called Nonconformists were the most active, and are to this day, both in the preserva∣tion of His Majesties Life, and the further discovery of the Plot, as is too apparent: Such another Sham-Plot as this, undoubtedly was the last Rebellion in Scotland fo∣mented and moved by Papists, disguised Priests and Emissaries, who make it their on∣ly business, first to insinuate to the Common People some Erronious Principles in Religion, who, as soon as they are tainted by those Delusions and poysonous Noti∣ons that are daily distilled by disguised Priests amongst them, thinks themselves illu∣minated by divine Light, and so led captive, being never well principled in Religi∣on, to believe any thing for Religion from these disguised Priests, who assures them Page 10that the Bishops are Papists, that the King of England is a Heretick, and not their true King, and that he hath broken the Covenant both before God and Man, and that they ought not to obey nor observe his Commands, nor the Commands of any appointed by him; but at all times oppose him and his, and defend themselves and the Kirk, as they hope to see the Kingdom of Heaven.
Secondly, These disguised Priests possess the Common People with a Belief, That they are bound by the Laws of God and Man to unite and take Arms against any that op∣press them: and all this, to encourage the poor People to Mutiny amongst them∣selves, and so give it the name of a Presbyterian Plot. But if the last Rebellion were fo∣mented and encouraged by Presbyterians or Fanaticks, how comes it to pass that ma∣ny of the Officers and Souldiers who were disbanded a little before this Rebellion, had notice to keep their Horses, and to be in readiness, for that they would soon have occa∣sion to use them? And so it happened, for within a fortnight after the Disbanding, the Rebellion broke out in Scotland. Certainly, no man can imagine that the Presbyteri∣ans or Fanaticks of Scotland did ever send word to these Officers and Souldiers, ei∣ther to keep their Horses, or be in readiness; sure it is then, that they must have it from the fomenters, the Papists, for to them only it was advantagious, in respect it had the name of a Presbyterian Plot: for thereby they hoped to bury their own Popish Plot, and to have all dissenting Protestants disarmed, the chief thing at that time aim∣ed at, and a matter worthy all true Englishmens Observation.
And also, That respect and kind usage the French King and his Catholicks treated His present Majesty with, when they banished him their Countrey, notwithstanding, even to the Destruction of our selves, the Protestant Religion, as well as home, as abroad, have we espoused the French King and his Catholicks quarrel? But why? His slighting and banishing our gracious King, his Popery, Foppery, Idolatry and Arbitrary Pow∣er, could nor ought not to be the Motive; much less his transmitting several Summs of Money to Coleman to bribe our Parliament: What then? I know not, but the Parlia∣ment (if not the Reader) can. Yet I cannot but remind you, how we have with all eagerness imaginable, assisted the French in their Conquests, as if we had desired no∣thing more than Arbitrary and Popish Government, two things inconsistent with the Laws of the Nation, and the Humour of all true Protestants, who can expect no more mercy from the French, or a Popish Successor, than a Mouse from a Cat; wit∣ness the Marian days: for the greater number of Hereticks they kill, the greater is their Merit.
Let these things be considered before it be too late, for a Popish Successor holds it as a Duty incumbent, and counts it his Glory, and the greatest Glory, to destroy Prote∣stantism, as pestilent Heresie; for his Religion teaches not only, that it is a deadly crime to favour Hereticks; but also, That if a Prince should solemnly engage his Faith, and give as much Security as any can give by Oath, yet when in the Throne, he is bound to de∣stroy all Hereticks: for the greater the Sacrifice, the greater will the Value and Merit of it be. So that the greater any wickedness is, or the more prodigiously Bloody and Inhumane it is, the more powerful Motive the Church of Rome hath for its encourage∣ment: Thus the Spirit of Popery and Delusion would fain perswade us, That the most horrid and barbarous Design that ever the Devils helped any of their instruments to con∣trive, is so transcendently both meritorious and just: This is not a private Spirit or a private Opinion, but that by which the Church of Rome is generally inspired. I con∣fess, when I think of this, and how faithful and serviceable we have been to the French King in his Late Wars, and altogether unkind and destructive to those of our own Religion, as well abroad as at home, to the great Wonder and Amazement of the most part of the World, I cannot but ascribe our present Troubles and Calamities, rather to our undertaking to advance the Power and Greatness (than either to Folly, Reason or good-Nature) of him, I mean the French King, who endeavoured by all Arts and Stratagems imaginable, to subdue us to Arbitrary Power, Popish Idolatry and Foppery; to compass this the easier, he bribed and paid Pensions to several about our Courts, as Lewis the Eleventh did to all Persons whom he thought had any power with King Edward; he was easily prevailed with to do any thing, being a Papist; but blessed be God, our present King, whom God preserve, gave the World sufficient Testimony, as well while he was amongst them, as since His Blessed Restauration, of His contemn∣ingPage 11and abhorring their Tyrannical Power, their Superstitious Idolatry and Fopperies; for he knows full-well, and cannot but be satisfied, That no Religion or Government can be so much for His Majesties Advantage, both in respect of Eternity, and this Worlds en∣joyment, as this Religion which is now professed (Protestancy) in England. Although His Majesty would by Popery be made Absolute over his Subjects, yet His Slavery un∣der so Tyrannical a power, would be so great and so insupportable, that as well Liberty as his Revenues, would be much less than now (Peter-pence must be paid, Licences and Indulgences for this, and that, must be had, and paid for; especially in case of Wo∣men) Whoever pleases to read our Chronicles, will soon perceive, That no Servants have been (so much kept under) greater Slaves to their Masters, than many of our Eng∣lish Kings were to the Pope; and those who were above his Discipline, the Romish Church ever found some way or other to cut him off, either by setting his People against him, as they did by King John; or by some Popish Poyson, or by some bloudy Godfrey Dagger. king Edgar for his Incontinency was enjoyned by Dunstan Abbot of Canter∣bury, not to wear his Crown for Seven Years, to which he was forced to submit. To Expiate the Murder of Thomas Becket, King Henry the Second (though unknown to him, committed by his Courtiers) was forced to walk bare-footed three Miles to visit his Shrine, and then to receive seven Lashes from the Monks. King John for opposing Pope Innocent the III. was (after interdicting the Kingdom for Six Years and Three Months) forced to render his Crown to Pandulphus the Popes Legate, for some time; yet all this did not satisfie the Ambitious Prelates Malice, but he caused him to be poysoned in Swinsted-Abbey, by one Simon a Monk. Be pleased now to observe, That in the time of Popery Princes lived not so peaceably, nor with that safety, as now they do. As for Example: The Emperor Henry the VII was Poysoned in receiving the Popish Sacrament from his Priest: This present Emperour, about some nine Years ago, was like to be Poysoned by his own Chaplain, who when he was giving the Eucharist to his Master the Emperour, his hands and body trembled in so unheard-of-a-manner, that the Emperour being thereat somewhat amazed, asked, What ailed him? the Priest not having power to speak, stood still like a Stock; some of the Courtiers observing all, came up towards the Priest, and forced him to eat his Superstitious God, upon which he dyed upon the place. Hen∣ry the III of France was Stabbed by Clement the Monk. Henry the IV of France was Stabbed by Ravilliac a Jesuit. But to come home, (though I could give an Hundred o-Examples of this Nature, and of the Popes themselves, who often poysoned several of their Cardinals.) I say, that betwixt the time of William the Conqueror, and the begin∣ning of this our Blessed Reformation, Seven of our Kings were murthered, Viz. King John, Richard I. Richard II. Edward II. Edward V. Henry VI. and Richard III. Now, What interest Princes can propose to Themselves or their Subjects, by introducing or favouring Popery, I know not; unless they desire to be thus Murthered or Governed by the Pope, till destroyed by his Caterpillars: From which, Good Lord (and the best of Par∣liaments) deliver us.
I must confess, that some Princes are of so good a nature, and of so great Clemency, that it makes them not only not to expect, but also, not to think that any of those to whom they have been both kind and very indulgent, should any way prove treacherous and false to them; but Experience for undoubtedly such, as having more easie and free Access to their Prince, and consequently, more opportunities to betray their Prince then others, are the Men over whom the Prince and the Whole Nation ought to have a more wary and stedfast, Eye, for all Plots and Conspiracies are generally begun by such as are most familiar with their Prince, and most in his Favour: whosever pleases to read History will find, that many Princes have been destroyed by their greatest Favourites, and too too often, by their impatient Heirs; even sometimes by Their Own Sons and Brothers. Did not Cain kill Abel? And was not Joseph sold into Egypt by his own Brothers? Had not Agrippina her Sir G.W. by whose power and advice she poysoned her Husband Clau∣dius? was she not her self afterwards killed by her own Son Nero?
Now if a little love, or a little animosity, or a little interest in the World, makes the Wife kill her Husband, makes a Brother kill a Brother, and the Son the Father, what will not the interest of this World, and the enjoyment of Heaven do, which is far more prevalent, and daily promised to any that will kill and destroy the Ʋpholder or Supporter of Page 12Heresie (the Popes own terms) I cannot therefore believe that a Prince (nay any one) can think himself secure, whilst he has a Popish Heir or Relation, within sight. That Popery was to be introduced by the Kings Death, is past denial; and how any one could be privy to This, and not to the Means to Effect it, I leave the Reader to judge.
That the Papists had a Design, not onely to introduce Popery, but also to murther the King, what is more certain? How many Princes have been murthered by Popish Con∣spiracies? How many Hellish Attempts have they made upon our Kings, and to intro∣duce Popery into this Nation? Why then are we so slow in bringing these Vipers to con∣dign punishment according to Law? Our neglect and tardiness herein, is the greatest en∣couragement imaginable to the Papists, as their several and frequent Attempts demon∣strate, notwithstanding their being so often frustrated and defeated in their Hellish Machinations and Horrid Designs. The introducing of Popery should not seem to us improbable; for their Principles are still and ever will be the same, their Hopes are as great now▪ as ever; they gain three Plotterr, for every one they lose, and such as Staf∣ford procured (Goal-Birds, Pick-pockets, Horse-stealers, Cheats, Popish John, and Apo∣states, all little to his credit) to confront the Kings Evidence, who had several Gentle∣men both of Worth and Quality, to confirm their Evidence: To all which, I was Eye-Witness at the Tryal of Stafford: though not at his First Tryal, for he was before tried for his Life in Germany, for Sodomy, and there condemned to die, had not Money and Friends procured his Pardon, as I hope neither will now; he deserving rather to be Rack'd to Death, then to have the favour of Cutting off his Head; notwithstanding his great Asseverations, That he never so much as thought of killing the King: A Popish Equivocation! For he knew the King was Excommunicated at Rome, and consequently No King in his Opinion. And further, to murder one that bears the Name of a He∣retical King, especially where there is a Popish Successor) is a most meritorious Act; nay, the greatest of all Merits, by reason of the vast advantage that will thereby a∣crue to the Popish Religion; not doubting but that the rest of the Kingdom will (Regis ad exemplum) soon after turn Papists. This, and the wonderful Discovery of this Plot, our Deliverance from utter Ruine, (wherein undoubtedly Gods great Providence appeared very remarkable) and the many and great Discouragements the Kings Evi∣dence and this Plot met withall, (but from whom? from those certainly that are in the Plot, or that wish it may take effect, whose Principles we know are sufficient to under∣take any Villany) may well assure us, That all the favour His present Majesty (whom God long preserve) can shew them, will not satisfie that great Expectation which they have from a Popish Successor.
These Observations (most worthy Parliament, and true English Patriots) I have pre∣sumed to offer to your Considerations: First, In respect you are the only Persons ca∣pable of Preserving the King, our Lives, Liberties, and Estates. Secondly, You are the Persons, if ever the King should be taken off by violence, (which God in his infi∣nite mercy prevent) that must Revenge his Death; the whole Kingdom is ready, and will assist You. God preserve the King, and give a happy Conclusion to all your Con∣sultations, which is an ever shall be the constant and hearty Prayer of
Your most Obedient, and most Faithful Servant, J. S.