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in the Inftitution: And that confequently, they who never receiv'd any other than LayBaptifm, are ftill unbaptiz'd, notwithstanding their being fuppos'd to have been confirm'd by the Bishop.

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Thus far, upon Suppofition that the Ancient Heretical and Schifmatical Baptifms were of the fame Nature with thofe of Unauthoriz'd Lay-men's Baptifms; which this Objection feems to reprefent them to have been; because it fays, that they were not Valid in themfelves That no Spiritual Graces were to be had thereby, &c. Tho' in truth those Heretical and Schifmatical Baptifms were not of the fame Nature with Unauthoriz'd LayBaptifms; for they were perform'd by Perfons who had receiv'd Epifcopal Ordination, and fo were authorized to Baptize. So that, whatsoever was the Fault of those Baptifms, the Churches who allow'd them, reckon'd J that they were Valid in themselves (as wantjing no Effential Part of the Inftitution) tho' accidentally Criminal, by reafon of the Uncharitableness of the Separation of thofe Hereticks and Schifmaticks, who adminifter'd and receiv'd thofe Baptifms: And during this Uncharitablenefs, they reckon'd, that the Baptiz'd receiv'd no Benefit by their Baptifm, till they came into the Unity of the Church; when, upon their Repentance of, and Absolution from, the Guilt of their Uncharitable Se paration, by Impofition of the Bishop's Hands,


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the Obftacle was thought to be taken away, which before hinder'd the Benefit of the Sacrament, and fo the Graces due to their Baptifm, if it had been done in Charity, and which were impeded and hinder'd, by reafon of their Uncharitablenefs and Sinful Separation from the Church; upon their Coming in to her Unity, took place, and became effectual to their Spiritual Advantage. This was the Opinion of thofe Churches, who allow'd thofe Baptifms to be Valid in themfelves! And how true this their Opinion was, I am not concern'd; because the Baptifms I am difputing, are not fuch Heretical and Schifmatical Bap tifms, but plainly Unauthoriz'd; not only with out any Commiffion at all,but alfo in Oppofition to Epifcopacy it felf; which thofe Ancient Churches never experienc'd, nor enter'd into any Confultation about. A tota

As for the Validity of Lay-Baptifm, That it "stands on the Authority of the Church's Power,

to grant fuch License to Lay-men in Extremi"es" when it can be prov'd, that Chrift has Vefted his Church with fuch a Power, it will ne eellarily follow, that fuch Authoriz'd LayBaptifm, in Cafes of Extremity, must be Valid upon that Foundation: But even then out Ordinary Lay-Baptisms must be Null and Void, because they are deftitute of the Plea of Neeffity, and alfo of any fuch Authority given them by the Church, in a Country where Chriftian Priefts are to be had. And there eds

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fore, 'tis in vain to claim any Benefit from the fuppos'd Power of the Church; because The her felf is fuppos'd not to have Authority to exercise this Power, except in EXTREMI TIES, which (God be prais'd) we do not yet labour under. But, after all, 'tis dangerous for the Church to give any fuch Liberty to Lay-Perfons for Cafes of Neceffity, as fome People call 'em: Because, this would be an Occafion of Destroying the very Unity of the Church, and expofe her to the Endless Divifions and Separations, which Hereticks and Schifmaticks would make from her. For, if by Virtue of this fuppos'd Power, the fhould once make a Canon to Licenfe Lay-men to Adminifter Valid Baptifm in Cases of Extremity, then, fuch Dividing Hereticks and Schifmaticks, calling their pretended Scruples and Tenderneffes of Confcience, by the Name of CASES OF EXTREMITY, would establish the Validity of their Lay-Adminiftrations, upon the Authority of the Church from whom they separate, and vindicate their Oppofitions to her, by the Power which fhe (in fuch cafe) would be conftru'd by Implication to give unto them. And fo every Private Perfon, after having blinded his Understanding by hearkning to Falfe Teachers, might plead, That he was under a NECESSITY to feparate from the Church, by reafon that he cannot overcome his Scruples about her Doctrine and Worship; and therefore might join himself to L 3

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any Congregation he should like beft, without the leaft Fear of Dividing from the Church: Because, where True Sacraments, with all the Ef fentials relating thereto, and the Word of God, are, there must be a True Church, and he could find Proper Sacraments adminifter'd in thefe New Congregations even by Lay-Administra tors, who would be prefum'd to act by the Authority of the Church her felf. This would be to build the Church and its Unity upon fo precarious a Foundation, that we fhould not know what Schifm and Caufelefs Separation mean, tho' the Scripture tells us there are, and will be fuch Sins: And the Apostle's Pronouncing Damnation upon those who are guilty of Tuch Sins, (Gal. 5. 20, 21.) would have no Force and Efficacy upon Men's Confciences, if they fhould once perfwade themselves (as they too often do) that they separate for Neceffity, and can (upon that very Account) receive Valid Sacraments from Lay-Hands And then twill be in vain to fay, that fuch Lay. Adminiftrations muft be confirm'd by the Bilhop, before they can be Valid Sacraments. For it will be demanded, by what Authority the Bishop requires fuch Adminiftrations to be confirm'd by him? And if good Teftimonials from Holy Scripture are not produc'd for this Purpofe, the Bishop's Supplying and Righting fuch Irregular Acts, will be made a Jeft of and the Separatists will conclude themselves as much in the Church as the Bishop himself,





while they Adminifter and Receive as good Sacraments as he; fince he cannot prove their Lay-Adminiftrations neceffary to be Confirm'd, Righted and Supply'd, by impofition of his Hands, &c. On the contrary, if it had but been conftantly afferted and defended, That the Sacraments of the Chriftian Church are, by Inftitution, of fuch a Nature, that the Chriftian Priesthood is one Infeparable and Effential Relation to them, or, that the Divine Authority of the Adminiftrator, is AS MUCH and as durable a part of their Inftitution, as the very Matter, or outward Elements of them. If Men had been always taught, that in the Sacraments, the Priest is AS MUCH the Reprefentative of God the Giver, as the outward Elements are of the Graces given, and that confequently, these latter are no Chriftian Sacraments when feparate from God's Authorized Reprefentative the Prieft: And that the Church her felf cannot by any Authority given to her, alter the nature of these things. If thefe Topicks had been conftantly infifted on, without Trimming to please any Party of Hereticks or Schifmaticks whatsoever: "Tis more than probable, that Men would have been much more tender of the Unity of the Church, and more cautious of feparating from her, than now we find they are; fince how far foever their vain Curiofity might have prompted them to have follow'd New fangled Lay-Teachers to pleafe their itching Ears, yet the Confideration of their being deftitute of CHRI STIAN

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