(BE) - A Brief Exposition of the Teachings for the New Church Meant by the New Jerusalem in the Book of Revelation

BE 106

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That the primates and leaders of the Romish church, at their inauguration into the ministry, swear to observe the decrees of the Council of Trent, appears from the bull of the Roman pontiff Pius IV, where, in the form of the oath of their profession of faith, dated the 18th of November, 1564, we find these words: "I firmly believe and profess all and every thing contained in the creed used by the holy church of Rome; and I receive, without any doubt, all such things as are maintained and declared in her holy canons, and general councils, and especially by the most holy Council of Trent; so help me God." That they also bind themselves by an oath to believe and profess what the Council of Trent has established, concerning the imputation of the merit of Christ, and justification by faith therein, is evident from these words in the same bull: "I embrace and receive each and all things, which have been determined and declared in the most holy Council of Trent, concerning original sin and justification." What these are, may be seen from the extracts taken from that council, see above (n. 3-8). From these principles established in that council, the following consequences have been drawn, namely, "That the Roman Catholics, before the Reformation, held precisely the same doctrines as the Reformed have done after it, with respect to the imputation of the merit of Christ, and justification by faith therein, only with this difference, that they conjoined the same faith with charity and good works," see above (n. 19-20). Also, "That the leading reformers, Luther, Melancthon, and Calvin, retained all the dogmas concerning the imputation of the merit of Christ, and justification by faith, just as they then were and had been with the Roman Catholics; but that they separated charity and good works from that faith, and declared them to have no saving efficacy, to the intent that they might be severed from the Roman Catholics, as to the very essentials of the church, which are faith and charity," see above (n. 21-23). Moreover, "That nevertheless the aforesaid reformers adjoined good works, and even conjoined them, to their faith, but in man as a passive subject; but the Roman Catholics conjoin them in him as an active subject; and that nevertheless there actually is a conformity of sentiment between both the one and the other, as to faith, works, and merits," see above (n. 24-29). From what has been shown, then, it is evident, that this faith is a faith which the Roman Catholics swear to observe, equally as well as the Reformed.


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