The Acts and Monuments of John Foxe/Volume 3/The Answer of John Huss to twenty-six Articles concerning his Book of the Church
The Answer of . to twenty-six Articles concerning his Book of the Church
presidents of the council; that is to say, the patriarch of Constantinople, the bishop of Castile, and the bishop of Libusse: which deputies or presidents, in reproof of the said treatise, delivered unto me certain articles, saying, that they were drawn out of the said treatise, and were written in the same.
First article.The first article: 'There is but one holy universal or catholic church, which is the universal company of all the predestinate.' I do confess that this proposition is mine, and it is confirmed by the saying of St. upon St. John.
St. Paul never member of the devil.The second article: 'St. Paul was never any member of the devil, albeit that he committed and did certain acts like unto the acts of the malignant church. And likewise St. Peter, who fell into a horrible sin of perjury and denial of his Master, it was by the permission of God, that he might the more firmly and steadfastly rise again and be confirmed.' I answer according to St. Augustine, that it is expedient that the elect and predestinate should sin and offend. Two manner of separations from the church.Hereby it appeareth that there are two manner of separations from the holy church. The first is, not to perdition, as all the elect are divided from the church. The second is to perdition, by which certain heretics are, through their deadly sin, divided from the church. Yet notwithstanding, by the grace of God, they may return again unto the flock, and be of the fold of our Lord Jesus Christ, of whom he speaketh himself, saying, 'I have other sheep which are not of this fold,' John xx.
The members of the church never fall finally away.The third article: 'No part or member of the church doth depart or fall away at any time from the body, forasmuch as the charity of predestination, which is the bond and chain of the same, doth never fall.' This proposition is thus placed in my book: 'The reprobate of the church proceed out of the same, and yet are not as parts or members of the same, forasmuch as no part or member of the same doth finally fall away; because that the charity of predestination, which is the bond and chain of the same, doth never fall away.' This is proved by 1 Cor. xiii., and Romans viii.: 'All things turn to good to them which love God.' Also, 'I am certain that neither death nor life can separate us from the charity and love of God:' as it is more at large in the book.
The predestinate is always a member of the universal church.The fourth article: 'The predestinate, although he be not in the state of grace according to present justice, yet is he always a member of the universal church.' This is an error, if it be understood of all such as be predestinate: for thus it is in the book, about the beginning of the fifth chapter, where it is declared, that there be divers manners and sorts of being in the church: for there are some in the church, according to a misshapen faith; and others according to predestination, as Christians predestinate, now in sin, but who shall return again unto grace.
To be in the church, and a member of the church. Predestination.The fifth article: 'There is no degree of honour or dignity, neither any human election, or any sensible sign, that can make any man a member of the universal church.' I answer, this article is after this manner in my book. 'And such subtleties are understood and known by considering what it is to be in the church, and what it is to be a part or member of the church; and that predestination doth make a man a member of the universal church, which is a preparation of grace for the present, and of glory to come; and not any degree of dignity, neither election of man, neither any sensible sign. For the traitor Judas Iscariot, notwithstanding Christ's election, and the temporal graces which were given him for his office of apostleship, and that he was reputed and counted of men a true apostle of Jesus Christ, yet was he no true disciple, but a wolf covered in a sheep's skin, as St. Augustine saith.'
Both good and bad in the church.The sixth article: 'A reprobate man is never a member of the holy church.' I answer, it is in my book with sufficient long probation out of Psalm xxvi., and out of the Ephesians v., and also by St. 's saying: 'The church of Jesus Christ is more plainly and evidently his body, than the body which he delivered for us to death.' I have also written in the fifth chapter of my book, that the holy church is the barn of the Lord, in which are both good and evil, predestinate and reprobate, the good being as the good corn or grain, and the evil as the chaff; and thereunto is added the exposition of St. Augustine.
The seventh article.The seventh article: 'Judas was never a true disciple of Jesus Christ.' I answer, and I do confess the same. This appeareth by the fifth article, which is passed before, and by St. Augustine in his Book of Penance, where he doth expound the meaning of St. John, in the first epistle, chap. ii., where he saith, They came out from amongst us, but they were none of us. He knew from the beginning all them that should believe, and him also that should betray him, and said: And therefore, I say unto you, that none cometh unto me except it be given him of my Father. From that time many of the disciples parted from him: and were not those also called disciples, according to the words of the gospel? And yet, notwithstanding they were no true disciples, because they did not remain and continue in the word of the Son of God, according as it is said: If you remain in my word, you be my disciples; forasmuch, then, as they did not continue with Christ as his true disciples, so likewise are they not the true sons of God: although they seem so, unto him they are not so; unto whom it is known what they shall be, that is to say, of good, evil.' Thus much writeth St. Augustine. It is also evident that Judas could not be the true disciple of Christ, by means of his covetousness: for Christ himself said in the presence of Judas, as I suppose, 'Except a man forsake all that he hath, he cannot be my disciple.' Forasmuch then as Judas did not forsake all things, according to the Lord's will, and follow him, he was a thief, as it is said in John xii.; and a devil, John vi.; whereby it is evident by the word of the Lord, that Judas was not his true, but feigned disciple. Whereupon St. Augustine writing upon John, declaring how the sheep hear the voice of Christ, saith, 'What manner of hearers, think ye, his sheep were? Truly Judas heard him and was a wolf, yet followed he the shepherd; but being clothed in a sheep's skin, he lay in wait for the shepherd.'
Eighth article.The eighth article: 'The congregation of the predestinate, whether they be in the state of grace or no, according unto present justice, is the holy universal church; and therefore it is an article of faith, and it is the same church which hath neither wrinkle, nor spot in it, but is holy and undefiled, which the Son of God doth call his own.' Answer: The words of the book out of the which this article was drawn are these: The church is taken sometime for the congregation of the elect and faithful, and so is the article taken in the creed.'Thirdly, the church is understood and taken for the congregation and assembly of the faithful, whether they be in the state of grace, according to present justice, or not. And in this sort it is an article of our faith, of which St. Paul maketh mention in Ephesians v.: 'Christ so loved his church, that he delivered and offered himself for the same,' &c. I pray you then, is there any faithful man who doth doubt that the church doth not signify all the elect and predestinate, which we ought to believe to be the universal church, the glorious spouse of Jesus Christ, holy and without spot? Wherefore this article is an article of faith, which we ought firmly to believe according to our creed; 'I believe the holy catholic church:' and of this church do St. Augustine, St. Gregory, St. , and divers others make mention.
Ninth article. Peter never was head of the whole universal church.The ninth article: 'Peter never was, neither is the head of the holy universal church.' Answer: This article was drawn out of these words of my book. 'All men do agree in this point, that Peter had received of the Rock of the church (which is Christ), humility, poverty, steadfastness of faith, and consequently blessedness. Not as though the meaning of our Lord Jesus Christ was, when he said. Upon this Rock I will build my church, that he would build every militant church upon the person of Peter, for Christ should build his church upon the Rock which is Christ himself, from whence Peter received his steadfastness of faith, forasmuch as Jesus Christ is the only head and foundation of every church, and not Peter.'
Tenth article. The vicar of Christ, how he is to be taken.The tenth article: 'If he that is called the vicar of Jesus Christ, do follow Christ in his life, then he is his true vicar. But, if so be he do walk in contrary paths and ways, then is he the messenger of Antichrist, and the enemy and adversary of St. Peter, and of our Lord Jesus Christ, and also the vicar of Judas Iscariot.' I answer, the words of my book are these: 'If he who is called the vicar of St. Peter, walk in the ways of christian virtues aforesaid, we do believe verily that he is the true vicar, and true bishop of the church which he ruleth; but if he walk in contrary paths and ways, then is he the messenger of Antichrist, contrary both to St. Peter, and to our Lord Jesus Christ. And therefore St. Bernard, in his fourth book, did write in this sort unto pope Eugene: Thou delightest and walkest in great pride and arrogancy, being gorgeously and sumptuously arrayed; what fruit or profit do thy flock or sheep receive by thee? If I durst say it, these be rather the pastures and feedings of devils than of sheep. St. Peter and St. Paul did not so; wherefore thou seemest by these thy doings to succeed Constantine, and not St. Peter.' These be the very words of St. Bernard. It followeth after, in my book, 'That if the manner and fashion of his life and living be contrary to that which St. Peter used, or that he be given to avarice and covetousness, then is he the vicar of Judas Iscariot, who loved and chose the reward of iniquity, and did set out to sale the Lord Jesus Christ.' As soon as they had read the same, those who ruled and governed the council, beheld one another, and making mocks and mouths, they nodded their heads at him.
The eleventh article: 'All such as do use simony, and priests living dissolutely and wantonly, do hold an untrue opinion of the seven sacraments, as unbelieving bastards, and not as children, not knowing what is the office and duty of the keys or censures, rites and ceremonies; neither of the divine service of the church, nor of veneration or worshipping of relics; neither of the orders constituted and ordained in the church; neither yet of indulgences or pardons.' I answer, that it is placed in this manner in my book. 'This abuse of authority or power is committed by such as do sell and make merchandise of holy orders, and get and gather together riches by simony, making fairs and mai-kets of the holy sacraments, and living in all kinds of voluptuousness and dissolute manners, or in any other filthy or villanous kind of living: they do pollute and defile the holy ecclesiastical state. And albeit that they profess in words that they do know God, yet do they deny it again by their deeds, and consequently believe not in God ; but, as unbelieving bastards, they hold a contrary and untrue opinion of the seven sacraments of the church. And this appeareth most endently, forasmuch as all such do utterly contemn and despise the name of God, according to the saying of Malachi: Unto you, O priests! be it spoken, which do despise and contemn my name.' Chap. i.
The twelfth article: 'The papal dignity hath his original from the emperors of Rome.' I answer, and mark well what my words are: 'The pre-eminence and institution of the pope is sprung and come of the emperor's power and authority. And this is proved by the ninety-sixth distinction; for Constantine granted this privilege unto the bishop of Rome, and others after him confirmed the same: That like as Augustus, for the outward and temporal goods bestowed upon the church, is counted always the most high king above all others; so the bishop of Rome should be called the principal father above all other bishops. This notwithstanding, the papal dignity hath its original immediately from Christ, as touching his spiritual administration and office to rule the church.' Then the cardinal of Cambray said: 'In the time of Constantine, there was a general council holden at Nice, in which, albeit the highest room and place in the church was given to the bishop of Rome; for honour's cause, it is ascribed unto the emperor. Wherefore then do ye not as well affirm and say: That the papal dignity took its original rather from that council, than by the emperor's authority and power?
The thirteenth article: 'No man would reasonably affirm (without revelation) either of himself or of any other, that he is the head of any particular church.' I answer, I confess it to be written in my book, and it followeth straight after: 'Albeit that through his good living he ought to hope and trust that he is a member of the holy universal church, the spouse of Jesus Christ, according to the saying of the Preacher: No man knoweth whether he be worthy and have deserved grace and favour, or hatred. And Luke xvii.: When ye have done all that ye can, say that you are unprofitable servants.'
The fourteenth article: 'It ought not to be believed that the pope, whatsoever he be, may be the head of any particular church, unless he be predestinate or ordained of God.' I answer, that I do acknowledge this proposition to be mine; and this is easy to prove, forasmuch as it is necessary that the christian faith should be depraved, forasmuch as the church was deceived by N., as it appeareth by St. Augustine.
The fifteenth article: 'The pope's power as vicar, is but vain and nothing worth, if he do not confirm and address his life according to Jesus Christ, and follow the manners of St. Peter.' I answer, that it is thus in my book; 'That it is meet and expedient that he who is ordained vicar, should address and frame himself, in manners and conditions, to the authority of him who did put him in place.' And John Huss said, moreover, before the whole council: Distinction of merit and of office.'I understand that the power and authority in such a pope as doth not represent the manners of Christ, is frustrate and void, as touching the merit and reward which he should obtain and get thereby, and doth not get the same: but not as concerning his office.' Then certain others standing by, asked of him, saying, 'Where is that gloss in your book?' John Huss answered, ' You shall find it in my treatise against Master Paletz:' whereat all the assistants, looking one upon another, began to smile and laugh.
Sixteenth article. Holiness cometh not by sitting, but by following.The sixteenth article: 'The pope is most holy, not because he doth supply Sixteenth and hold the room and place of St. Peter, but because he hath great revenues.' I answer, that my words are mutilated, for thus it is written: 'He is not most holy, because he is called the vicar of St. Peter, or because he hath great and not by large possessions; but if he be the follower of Jesus Christ in humility, gentleness, patience, labour and travail, and in perfect love and charity.'
Seventeenth article.The seventeenth article: 'The cardinals are not the manifest and true successors of the other apostles of Jesus Christ, if they live not according to the fashion of the apostles, keeping the commandments and ordinances of the Lord Jesus.' I answer, that it is thus written in my book, and it proveth itself sufficiently; 'For if they enter in by another way than by the door, which is the Lord Jesus, they be murderers and thieves.'
Then said the cardinal of Cambray, 'Behold both this and all other articles before rehearsed, he hath written much more detestable things in his book than are presented in his articles. Truly, John Huss, thou hast kept no order in thy sermons and writings. Had it not been your part to have applied your sermons according to your audience? for to what purpose was it, or what did it profit you before the people to preach against the cardinals, when none of them were present? It had been meeter for you to have told them their faults before them all, than before the laity.' Then answered John Huss: 'Reverend father! forasmuch as I did see many priests and other learned men present at my sermons, for their sakes I spake those words.' Then said the cardinal, 'Thou hast done very ill, for by such kind of talk thou hast disturbed and troubled the whole state of the church.'
John Huss condemneth the cruelty of the prelates in seeking the death of hereticsThe eighteenth article: 'A heretic ought not to be committed to the secular powers to be put to death, for it is sufficient only that he abide and suffer the ecclesiastical censure.' These are my words, 'That they might be ashamed of their cruel sentence and judgment, especially forasmuch as Jesus Christ, Bishop both of the Old and New Testament, would not judge such as were disobedient by civil judgment, neither condemn them to bodily death.' As touching the first point, it may evidently be seen in Luke xii. And for the second, it appeareth also by the woman who was taken in adultery, of whom it is spoken in John viii. and it is said in Matthew xviii., 'If thy brother have offended thee,' &c. Mark, therefore, what I do say, that a heretic, whatsoever he be, ought first to be instructed and taught with christian love and gentleness by the holy Scriptures, and by the reasons drawn and taken out of the same; as St. Augustine and others have done, disputing against the heretics. But if there were any, who, after all these gentle and loving admonitions and instructions, would not cease from, or leave off, their stiffness of opinions, but obstinately resist against the truth, such, I say, ought to suffer corporal or bodily punishment.
As soon as John Huss had spoken those things, the judges read in his book a certain clause, wherein he seemed grievously to inveigh against them who delivered a heretic unto the secular power, not being confuted or convicted of heresy; and compared them unto the high priests. Scribes and Pharisees, who said unto Pilate, The betraying and condemning of innocents.'It is not lawful for us to put any man to death,' and delivered Christ unto him: and yet notwithstanding, according unto Christ's own witness, they were greater murderers than Pilate. 'For he,' said Christ, 'who hath delivered me unto thee, hath committed the greatest offence.' Then the cardinals and bishops made a great noise, and demanded of John Huss, saying: 'Who are they that thou dost compare or assimule unto the Pharisees?' Then he said, 'All those who deliver up any innocent unto the civil sword, as the Scribes and Pharisees delivered Jesus Christ unto Pilate.' 'No, no,' said they again; 'for all that, you spake here of doctors.' And the cardinal of Cambray, according to his accustomed manner, said: 'Truly they who have made and gathered these articles, have used great lenity and gentleness, for his writings are much more detestable and horrible.'
Nineteenth article. The church militant standeth in three parts.The nineteenth article: 'The nobles of the world ought to constrain and compel the ministers of the church to observe and keep the law of Jesus Christ.' I answer, that it standeth thus, word for word, in my book. 'Those who be on our part do preach and affirm that the church militant, according to the parts which the Lord hath ordained, is divided, and consisteth in three parts: that is to say, ministers of the church, who should keep purely and sincerely the ordinances and commandments of the Son of God; and the nobles of the world, who should compel and drive them to keep the commandments of Jesus Christ; and of the common people, serving to both these parts and ends, according to the institution and ordinance of Jesus Christ.'
Twentieth article.The twentieth article: 'The ecclesiastical obedience is a kind of obedience which the priests and monks have invented without any express authority of the holy Scriptures.' I answer and confess, that those words are thus written in my book. Three kinds of obedience.I say that there be three kinds of obedience, spiritual, secular, and ecclesiastical. The spiritual obedience is that which is only due according to the law and ordinance of God, under which the apostles of Jesus Christ did live, and all Christians ought to live. The secular obedience is that which is due according to the civil laws and ordinances. The ecclesiastical obedience is such as the priests have invented, without any express authority of Scripture. True obedience ruled by God's commandment.The first kind of obedience doth utterly exclude from it all evil, as well on his part who giveth the commandment, as on his, also, who doth obey the same. And of this obedience it is spoken in Deut. xxiv. 'Thou shalt do all that which the priests of the kindred of Levi shall teach and instruct thee, according as I have commanded them.'
Twenty-first article.The twenty-first article: 'He that is excommunicated by the pope, if he refuse and forsake the judgment of the pope and the general council, and appealeth unto Jesus Christ, after he hath made his appellation, all the excommunications and curses of the pope cannot annoy or hurt him. I answer, that I do not acknowledge this proposition; but indeed I did make my complaint in my book, that they had both done me, and such as favoured me, great wrong; and that they refuse to hear me in the pope's court. For after the death of one pope, I did appeal to his successor, and all that did profit me nothing. And to appeal from the pope to the council it were too long; and that were even as much as if a man in trouble should seek an uncertain remedy. Appealing unto Christ.And, therefore, last of all, I have appealed to the Head of the church, my Lord Jesus Christ; for he is much more excellent and better than any pope, to discuss and determine matters and causes, forasmuch as he cannot err, neither yet deny justice to him that doth ask or require it in a just cause; neither can he condemn the innocent. forbidden by the cardinal of Cambray.Then spake the cardinal of Cambray unto him, and said: 'Wilt thou presume above St. Paul, who appealed unto the emperor, and not unto Jesus Christ?' John Huss answered: 'Forasmuch then as I am the first that do it, am I, therefore, to be reputed and counted a heretic? And yet notwithstanding St. Paul did not appeal unto the emperor of his own motion or will, but by the will of Christ, who spake unto him by revelation, and said: Be firm and constant, for thou must go unto Rome. And as he was about to rehearse his appeal again, they mocked him.
A knot found in a rushThe twenty-second article: 'A vicious and naughty man liveth viciously and naughtily; but a virtuous and godly man liveth virtuously and godly.' I answer, my words are these: 'That the division of all human works is into two parts; that is, that they be either virtuous or vicious; forasmuch as it doth appear, that if any man be virtuous and godly, and that he do any thing, he doth it then virtuously and godly. And, contrariwise, if a man be vicious and naughty, that which he doth is vicious and naughty.' For as vice, which is called crime or offence (and thereby understand deadly sin), doth universally infect or deprave all the acts and doings of the subject (that is, of the man who doth them), so likewise virtue and godliness do quicken all the acts and doings of the virtuous and godly man; insomuch that he, being in the state of grace, is said to pray and do good works even sleeping, as it were by a certain means working; as St. Augustine, St. Gregory, and divers others affirm. The tree that is good, bringeth forth good fruit.And it appeareth in Luke vi., 'If thine eye (that is to say, the mind or intention) be simple (not depraved with the perverseness of any sin or ottence), all the whole body (that is to say, all the acts and doings) shall be clear and shining, (that is, acceptable and grateful unto God). But if thine eye be evil, the whole body is darkened.' And in 2 Cor. x.; 'All things that you do, do them to the glory of God.' And likewise in 1 Cor. xvi. it is said, 'Let all your doings be done with charity.' Wherefore all kind of life and living according unto charity is virtuous and godly; and if it be without charity, it is vicious and evil. This saying may well be proved out of Deut. xxiii., where God speaketh to the people, that he that keepeth his commandments is blessed in the house and in the field, out-going and in-coming, sleeping and waking; but he that doth not keep his commandments, is accursed in the house and in the fields, in going out and in coming in, sleeping and waking, &c. The same also is evident by St. Augustine, upon the psalm, where he writeth, that a good man in all his doings doth praise the Lord. And Gregory saith, that the sleep of saints and holy men doth not lack their merit. How much more then his doings which proceed of good zeal, be not without reward, and consequently be virtuous and good? And contrariwise it is understood of him who is in deadly sin, of whom it is spoken in the law, that whatsoever the unclean man doth touch, is made unclean. To this end doth that also appertain, which is before repeated out of Mal. i. And Gregory, in the first book and first question, saith, 'We do defile the bread, which is the body of Christ, when we come unworthily to the table, and when we, being defiled, do drink his blood.' And St. Augustine, on Psalm cxlvi. saith, 'If thou dost exceed the due measure of nature, and dost not abstain from gluttony, but gorge thyself up with drunkenness, whatsoever laud and praise thy tongue doth speak of the grace and favour of God, thy life doth blaspheme the same.'
Cardinal of Cambray objecteth.When he had made an end of this article, the cardinal of Cambray said: 'The Scripture saith that we be all sinners. And again, If we say we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and so we should always live in deadly sin.' John Huss answered,' The Scripture speaketh in that place of venial sins, which do not utterly expel or put away the habit of virtue from a man, but do associate themselves together.' And a certain Englishman, whose name was W., said: 'But those sins do not associate themselves with any act morally good.' John Huss alleged again St. Augustine's place upon Psalm cxlvi., which when he rehearsed, they all with one mouth said, 'What makes this to the purpose?'
Twenty third article. Forbidding to preach, whether it ought to be obeyed.The twenty-third article: 'The minister of Christ, living according to his law, and having the knowledge and understanding of the Scriptures, and an earnest desire to edify the people, ought to preach; notwithstanding the pretended excommunication of the pope. And moreover, if the pope, or any other ruler, do forbid any priest or minister, so disposed, to preach, that he ought not to obey him.' I answer, that these are my words: 'That albeit the excommunication were either threatened or come out against him, in such sort that a Christian to ought not to do the commandments of Christ, it appeareth by the words of St. Peter, and the other apostles, That we ought rather to obey God than man.' Preaching and alms-giving be not works indifferent, but duties and commandments. To forbid a minister to preach, and to forbid a rich man to give alms, is both one.Whereupon it followeth, that the minister of Christ, living according unto this law, &c., ought to preach, notwithstanding any pretended excomnumication; for it is evident, that it is commanded unto the ministers of the church to preach the word of God [Acts v.], God hath commanded us to preach and testify unto the people; as by divers other places of the Scripture and the holy fathers, rehearsed in my treatise, it doth appear more at large. The second part of this article followeth in my treatise in this manner: 'By this it appeareth, that for a minister to preach, and a rich man to give alms, are not indifferent works, but duties and commandments. Whereby it is further evident, that if the pope, or any other ruler of the church, do command any minister disposed to preach, not to preaach, or a rich man disposed to give alms, not to give, that they ought not to obey him.' And Huss added moreover; 'To the intent that you may understand me the better, I call that a pretended excommunication, which is unjustly disordered and given forth, contrary to the order of the law and God's commandments; for which, the meet minister appointed thereunto, ought not to cease from preaching, neither yet to fear damnation.'
Then they objected unto him, that he had said, that such kind of excommunications were rather blessings. How the pope's cursings are blessings.'Verily,' said John Huss, 'even so I do now say again, that every excommunication, by which a man is unjustly excommunicated, is unto him a blessing before God; according to that saying of the prophet, I will curse where you bless: and contrariwise. They shall curse, but thou, O Lord! shalt bless.' Then the cardinal of Florence, who had always a notary ready at his hand to write such things as he commanded him, said: 'The law is, that every excommunication, be it ever so unjust, ought to be feared.' 'It is true,' said John Huss, 'for I do remember eight causes, for which excommunication ought to be feared.' Then said the cardinal: 'Are there no more but eight?' 'It maybe,' said John Huss, 'that there be more.'
Twenty-fourth article.The twenty-fourth article: 'Every man who is admitted unto the ministry of the church, receiveth also by special commandment the office of a preacher, and ought to execute and fulfil that commandment, notwithstanding any excommunication pretended to the contrary.' Answer: my words are these: A minister once admitted is more bound to preach, than to do any other work of mercy, the pope's prohibition notwithstanding.'Forasmuch as it doth appear by that which is aforesaid, that whosoever cometh, or is admitted unto the ministry, receiveth also by especial commandment the office of preaching, he ought to fulfil that commandment, any excommunication to the contrary pretended notwithstanding. Also no Christian ought to doubt, but that a man sufficiently instructed in learning, is more bound to counsel and instruct the ignorant, to teach those who are in doubt, to chastise those who are unruly, and to remit and forgive those that do him injury, than to do any other works of mercy.' Forasmuch then as he that is rich and hath sufficient, is bound, under pain of damnation, to minister and give corporal and bodily alms, as appeareth Matt. xxv., how much more is he bound to do spiritual alms!
Twenty-fifth article.The twenty-fifth article: 'The ecclesiastical censures are antichristian, such as the clergy have invented for their own preferment, and for the bondage and servitude of the common people; whereby if the laity be not obedient unto the clergy at their will and pleasure, it doth multiply their covetousness, defend their malice, and prepare a way for Antichrist. Censures of the pope's church multiply the pope's covetousness.Whereby it is an evident sign and token, that such censures proceed from Antichrist; which censures in their processes they do call fulminations or lightnings, whereby the clergy do chiefly proceed against such as do manifest and open the wickedness of Antichrist, who thrust themselves into the office of the clergy.' These things are contained in the last chapter of his treatise of the church.—I answer, and I deny that it is in that form: but the matter thereof is largely handled in the twenty-third chapter. And in the examination of the audience, they have gathered certain clauses most contrary thereunto; which when they had read, the cardinal of Cambray renewed his old song, saying: 'Truly, these are much more grievous and offensive, than the articles which are gathered.'Twenty-sixth article.The twenty-sixth article: 'There ought no interdict to be appointed unto the people, forasmuch as Christ the high bishop, neither for John Baptist, neither for any injury that was done unto him, did make any interdict.' My words are these: 'When I complained, that for one minister's sake, an interdict was given out, and thereby all good men ceased from the laud and praise of God. Christ interdicted none, but prayed for all.And Christ, the high bishop, notwithstanding that the prophet was taken and kept in prison, than whom there was no greater amongst the children of men, did not give out any curse or interdict, no not when Herod beheaded him; neither when he himself was spoiled, beaten, and blasphemed of the soldiers, Scribes, and Pharisees, did he then curse them, but prayed for them, and taught his disciples to do the same, as it appeareth in Matt. v. And Christ's first vicar, following the same doctrine and learning, saith [1 Pet. ii.], Hereunto are ye called: for Christ hath suffered for us, leaving us an example, that we should follow his footsteps, who, when he was cursed and evil spoken of, did not curse again. And St. Paul, following the same order and way, in Rom. xii., saith, Bless them that persecute you.' There were besides these, many other places of Scripture recited in that book; but they being omitted, these only were rehearsed, which did help or prevail to stir up or move the judges' minds.
And these are the articles which are alleged out of John Huss's book, entituled, 'Of the Church.'
- Bern, ad Eugen. lib. 4.
- The cardinals do count it heresy, that they should be compelled to be followers of the apostles.
- And how could this bishop of Cambray understand the books of John Huss being written in Bohemian speech, which he understood not?
- For this appeal of John Huss, see page 467.—Ed.