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| Of Church-Government, and the several sorts of Assemblies for - the same.
CHRIST hath instituted a government, and governors
Of the Power in common of all these Assemblies.
IT is lawful, and agreeable to the word of God, that the
several assemblies before mentioned have power to convent, and call before them, any person within their several bounds, whom the ecclesiastical business which is before
them doth concern".
tions, prayers, intercessions, and
They have power to hear and determine such caus and differences as do orderly come before them.
It is lawful, and agreeable to the word of God, that all the said assemblies have somepowerto dispense church-censures.
Qf Congregational Assemblies, that is, the Meeting of to
HE ruling officers of a particular congregation halt
those that walk disorderly.
Thirdly, Because of the great sin and danger, both to him that comes unworthily, and also to the whole church". And
that which was broken, neitherhart
that which was lost; but with force
& there was power and authority, under the Old Testament, to keep unclean persons from holy things'. * . The like power and authority, by way of analogy, conto tinues under the New Testament. - The ruling officers of a particular congregation have a power authoritatively to suspend from the Lord's table a ... person not yet cast out of the church: First, Because those who have authority to judge of, and admit, such as are fit to receive the sacrament, have o, authority to keep back such as shall be found unworthy. ... Secondly, Because it is an ecclesiastical business of ordionary practice belonging to that congregation, to When congregations are divided and fixed, they need all mutual help one from another, both in regard of their instrinsical weaknesses and mutual dependence, as also in to regard of enemies from without.
o Of Classical Assemblies.
# THE scripture doth hold out a presbytery in a church". o A presbytery consisteth of ministers of the word, and # such other publick officers as are agreeable to and warranted
! o And if any man obey not our word * by this epistle, note that man, and
have no company with him, that he
may be ashamed. Ver. 15. Yet count o him. not as an enemy, but admonish him as a brother. 1 Cor. xi. 27. ... Wherefore, whosoever shall eat this t bread, and drink this cup of the Lord, unworthily, shall be guilty of the . body and blood of the Lord. See on to the end of the Chaster. Compared with Jude, Ver. 23. And others save with fear, pulling them out of the fire; hating even the garment spot*... ted by the flesh. 1 Tim. v. 22. Lay ... hands suddenly on no man, neither o be partaker of other men's sins; keep 3. thyself pure. ... ." Lev. xiii. 5, And the priest shall o, look on him the seventh day; and, s' *hold, if the plague in his sight be
at a stay, and the plague spread
by the word of God to be church-governors, to join with
This appeareth thus:
First, The church of Jerusalem consisted of more Col. gregations than one, as is manifest: - - -
1st, By the multitude of believers mentioned in divers; both before the dispersion of the believers there, by mean:
of the persecution"; and also after the dispersion
they determined that Paul and Barnabas, and certain other of them,
should go up to Jerusalem unto the apostles and elders about this question.
Ver, 4. And when they were come
rusalem; and they were also
the number of the o: be.
lievers were the
ltip 1. aro
2dly, By the many apostles and other preachers in the dio of Jerusalem. And if there were but one congregation there, then each apostle preached but seldom *; which will not consist with Acts vi. 2. 3dly, The diversity of languages among the believers, mentioned both in the second and sixth chapters of the Acts, doth argue more congregations than one in that church. ; Secondly, All those congregations were under one presbyterial government; because, 1st, They were one churchy.
2dly, The elders of the church are mentioned ".
Acts ii. 47. Praising God, and having favour with all the people; and the Lord added unto the church daily such as should be saved. Com/ared with Acts v. 11. And great fear came upon all the church, and upon as many as heard these things. Acts xii. 5. Peter therefore was kept in prison : but prayer was made without ceasing of the church unto God for him. Acts xv. 4. And when they were come to Jerusalem, they were received of the church, and of the apostles and elders; and they declared all things that God had done with them. *Acts xi. 30. Which also they did, and sent it to the elders by the hands of Barnabas and Saul. Acts xv. 4. And when they were come to Jerusalem, they were received of the church, and of the apostles and elders; and they declared all things that God had done with them. Ver. 6. And the apostles and elders came together to consider. of this matter. Ver. 22. Then it pleased the apostles and elders, with the whole church, to send chosen men of their own company to Antioch, with Paul and Barnabas; namely, Judas surnamed Barsabas, and Silas, chief men among the brethren. Acts xxi. 17. And when we were come B b 2 to