were committed, he was to divorce her; if not, he could not hold his ministery. The councel of Nantes condemn'd in 7. yeares penance the husband that would reconcile with an adultress. But how proves this that other causes may divorce? it proves thus; there can be but two causes why these councels enjoyn'd so strictly the divorcing of an adultress, either as an offender against God, or against the husband; in the latter respect they could not impose on him to divorce; for every man is the maister of his own forgivenes; who shal hinder him to pardon the injuries don against himself? It follows therfore that the divorce of an adultress was commanded by these three councels, as it was a sin against God; and by all consequence they could not but beleeve that other sins as hainous might with equal justice be the ground of a divorce.
Basil in his 73. rule, as Chamier numbers it, thus determins, that divorce ought not to be, unlesse for adultery, or the hindrance to a godly life. What doth this but proclaime aloud more causes of divorce then adultery, if by other sins besides this, in wife or husband, the godlines of the better person may be certainly hinder'd, and endanger'd.
Epiphanius no less ancient, writing against Heretics, & therefore should himself be orthodoxal above others, acquaints us in his second book, Tom. 1, not that his private persuasion was, but that the whole Church in his time generally thought other causes of divorce lawful besides adultery, as comprehended under that name; If, saith he, a divorce happ'n for any cause either fornication, or adultery, or any hainous fault, the word of God blames not either the man or wife marrying again, nor cutts them off from the congregation, or from life, but beares with the infirmity; not that he may keep both wives, but that leaving the former he may be lawfully joyn'd to the latter, the holy word, and the holy Church of God commiserates this man, especially, if he be otherwise of good conversation, and live according to Gods law. This place is cleerer then exposition, and needs no comment.
Ambrose on the 16. of Luke, teaches that all wedloc is not Gods joyning and to the 19. of Pro. That a wife is prepard of the Lord, as the old latin translates it, he answers that the septuagint renders it, a wife is fitted by the Lord, and temper'd to a kind of harmony; and where that harmony is there God joyns; where it is not, there dissention reigns, which is not from God, for God is love. This he brings to prove the marrying of Christian with Gentile to be no mariage, and consequently divorc't without sin: but he who sees not this argument how plainly it serves to divorce any untunable, or unattonable matrimony, sees little. On the 1 to the Cor. 7, he grants a wo-