hope of winning another soule without the peril of loosing our own. For this is the glory of the Gospel to teach us that the end of the commandment is charity, 1 Tim. 1. not the drudging out a poore and worthlesse duty forc't from us by the taxe, and taile of so many letters. This doctrine therefore can bee no command, but it must contradict the moral law, the Gospel, and the Apostle himselfe both else where, and heere also eevn in the act of speaking.
If then it be no command, it must remain to be a permission, and that not absolute, for so it would be still contrary to the law, but with such a caution as breaks not the law, but as the manner of the Gospel is, fulfills it through charity. The law had two reasons, the one was ceremonial, the pollution that all Gentiles were to the Jewes; this the vision of Peter had abolisht, Acts 10. and clens'd all creatures to the use of a Christian. The Corinthians understood not this, but fear'd lest dwelling in matrimony with an unbeleever, they were defil'd. The Apostle discusses that scruple with an Evangelic reason, shewing them that although God heretofore under the law, not intending the conversion of the Gentiles, except some special ones, held them as polluted things to the Jew, yet now purposing to call them in, he hath purify'd them from that legal uncleannesse wherein they stood, to use and to be us'd in a pure manner.
For saith he, The unbeleeving husband is sanctifi'd by the wife, and the unbeleeving wife, is sanctifi'd by the husband, else were your children uncleane; but now they are holy. That is, they are sanctify'd to you, from that legal impurity which you so feare; and are brought into a neer capacity to be holy, if they beleeve, and to have free accesse to holy things. In the mean time, as being Gods creatures, a christian hath power to use them according to their proper use; in as much as now, all things to the pure are become pure. In this legal respect therefore ye need not doubt to continue in mariage with an unbeleever. Thus others also expound this place and Cameron especially. This reason warrants us onely what wee may doe without feare of pollution, does not binde us that we must. But the other reason of the law to divorce an infidel was moral, the avoiding of enticement from the true faith. This cannot shrink; but remains in as full force as ever, to save the actuall christian from the snare of a misbeleever. Yet if a Christian full of grace and spirituall gifts finding the misbeleever not frowardly affected, feares not a seducing, but hopes rather a gaining, who sees not that this morall reason is not violated by not divorcing, which the law commanded to doe, but better ful-