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Penitence; with the Ministry and Rites of the Church and the Civil Authority; and with the Resurrection and the Last Judgment. Their tenour is diffuse and explanatory. For they were evidently designed to be rather the basis of a Concordat with the Lutherans, than a body of Articles to be formally adopted. In fact, they never had any legal force at all; and their chief interest lies in this, that they were probably the channel through which the Augsburg Confession subsequently affected our English Articles. * THE SIX ARTICLES.-The reaction, which followed in favour of the other party, is marked in the well known Six Articles of 1539, brought forward in Parliament by the Duke of Norfolk, carried against the stout resistance of Cranmer and his friends, and accepted by Convocation. These Articles, to which submission was enforced by the severest penalties, had little to do with definition of abstract doctrine. The first maintained the doctrine of Transubstantiation with it consequences; others enforced certain important points of the Mediæval Church system, viz., Communion in One kind, Vows of Chastity, the use of Private Masses, the Celibacy of the Clergy, and the obligation of Auricular Confession. The publication of these Articles, in fact, simply indicated the temporary victory of the party of reaction; it is doubtful how far the cruel penalties provided by Statute against all infringement of them were put in force; but their effect was to stop further progress in doctrinal and ecclesiastical change during the closing years of Henry VIII.
THE FORTY-TWO ARTICLES.-The accession of Edward vi. introduced a complete reversal of this policy, giving to the reforming party an ascendency, which they used
vigorously and even vehemently. The publication of the Prayer Book was the first-fruits of this ascendency. The principles which it embodies are clearly expressed in the original Preface; and, as it had to be accepted and used by all, laity as well as clergy, under the Act of Uniformity, it might have been thought sufficient in itself to define the doctrinal and ecclesiastical position of the Church of England. But in 1552 it was decided to add to the publication of the Revised Prayer Book, and the proposed reconstitution of the Ecclesiastical Law, the promulgation of a more complete and definite body of Articles. The result was the Forty-two Articles, “ agreed upon by Bishops and other learned men in Synod of London, 1552, for avoiding of controversy and establishment of godly concord on certain matters of religion. From this heading it seems doubtful whether these Articles were submitted to the Convocations properly so called. Cranmer had the chief hand in framing them, acting under an order of the Council in 1551; probably he submitted them to the “Bishops and other learned' men” for consideration and revision; afterwards they passed again through his hands, and were forwarded by him to the Council, with a view to the enforcement by royal authority of subscription to them by the clergy; finally they were published by the “King's Majesty's commandment” in June 1553, with the order that all beneficed clergy should sign them on pain of deprivation. But the death of Edward yi. in July 1553 put a stop to the whole proceeding; and the Articles remained in abeyance through the whole time of the reaction under Queen Mary.
These Forty-two Articles are, as will be seen hereafter, the basis of our present Articles. Although the heading shows that they were only intended to deal with certain matters of Religion," in view of the controversies of the time, and although the consideration of their substance confirms this statement, yet they were far the fullest and most precise declaration yet put forth by the Church of England. They show very clearly the influence (perhaps through the abortive Thirteen Articles) of the Augsburg Confession; but they contain much independent matter, and even where they follow the Confession, introduce material changes in its substance. In one point especially they go beyond it. At the time when they were drawn up the influence of Calvinism was just beginning to be felt in England, although it had as yet no great ascendency; and it is obvious that this had made it necessary to pronounce upon the questions of Predestination and Election, on which the Calvinistic system turns. On the whole they clearly defined the position of the Church as Catholic, in respect of the preservation of the doctrine of the Creeds and the main features of Church organization; and at the same time, what is usually called “Protestant,” accepting the Reformation principle of adhesion to Holy Scripture as the basis of faith, asserting freedom and independence against Rome, claiming right to reject doctrinal corruptions and practical abuses contrary to Scripture and primitive Church practice, and dealing in complete independence with the doctrines of Justification and Election, which formed the leading principles of the Lutheran and Calvinistic Reformations.
THE ELEVEN ARTICLES.-On the accession of Elizabeth, pending the revision of these Articles, a short preliminary series of Eleven Articles was issued in 1559 by Royal and Episcopal authority. These were of a simple and practical type, accepting Holy Scripture as the basis of faith and the Creeds as its interpretation, asserting the authority of the Church and the Royal Supremacy, maintaining the Prayer Book, rejecting Private Masses, the Veneration of Images and Relics, and restoring the Cup to the Laity.
THE THIRTY-NINE ARTICLES.-Meanwhile the revision of the Forty-two Articles was carried on, mainly under the direction of Archbishop Parker, who, like the Queen herself, was bent on preserving as far as possible the old basis, as against the more revolutionary ideas of the growing Calvinistic party. The Confession of Wurtemburg (1552), a revised and enlarged edition of the Confession of Augsburg, was clearly studied by the revisers. The revised Articles were submitted to Convocation, and passed with alterations reducing them to Thirty-nine in 1563. was in
ded that they should be promulgated only by Royal authority. But Parliament claimed a right to discuss them, which was ultimately conceded, and finally subscription to them was enforced by Act of Parliament in 1571. I'hey were put out both in Latin and in English. It is doubtful whether the Latin or English version is to be considered as original; but it appears that the two are substantially of co-ordinate authority, and may be used with great advantage to elucidate and interpret each other.
Of the alterations made in the Forty-two Articles, which are numerous, the chief are the following :
(a) Some Articles were added or enlarged, evidently for the sake of completeness. Thus Art. ii., On the Son of God, was enlarged; Art. v., On the Holy Ghost, was inserted; in Art. vi. were added a ·list of Canonical Books, and a definition of the position of the Apocrypha; Art. xii., On Good Works, was inserted. Art. xxix. and xxx., on the Holy Communion, were also added. These alterations all show the desire of a fuller and more definite settlement of doctrine.
(6) On the other hand some Articles were omitted, either as now obsolete, or from a desire to refrain from pronouncing authoritative opinion on the subjects dealt with. Such were the old Article x. on the limits of the action of Grace; the old Article xvi. on “Blasphemy against the Holy Ghost;" and the last Four Articles (the old xxxix., xl., xli., xlii.) condemning the belief that the Resurrection is past (being only a spiritual Resurrection), and that the souls of the departed die with the body or sleep idly, “the fable of Heretics called Millenarii,” and the opinion that all men, be they never so ungodly," shall be saved at the last.
(c) On two points there is some historical doubt.
In Art. xx. the celebrated clause, “ The Church hath power to decree rites and ceremonies and authority in controversies of faith," was certainly not in Parker's original draft, nor was it inserted in Convocation. In all probability it was inserted by the Council at the instance of the Queen, and afterwards accepted by Convocation and Parliament.
Art. xxix., on the other hand, which was in the original, was omitted in the Authorized Latin Edition published in 1563 by Royal Command, but restored in 1571. In this case also probably the change was made at the instance of the Queen; but here the Royal interference was not accepted.
The Articles thus completed were put forth as "agreed upon by the Archbishops and Bishops of both Provinces and the whole Clergy, in the Convocation holden in London in the year 1562, for the avoiding of Diversities of opinion and for the establishing consent touching true Religion." The title shows the claim for them of a greater comprehensiveness and completeness than was advanced in 1552; but at the same time declares the object to be, as before, the settlement of controversy and union of all on a general basis of agreement. Subscription to them was required from all clergy, and all persons taking degrees at the Universities. Even in 1688 the Toleration Act required from all Dissenting Ministers subscription to all, except xxxiv., XXXV., Xxxvi., and parts of xx. and xxvii. The first of these obligations alone remains at the present moment.
THE LAMBETH ARTICLES.—The Articles thus drawn up in 1562 have remained unchanged till the present time. The history, how ever, would be incomplete without a brief reference to the attempt to supplement them in 1595 by the addition of the well-known “Lambeth Articles.” This attempt marks the temporary dominance of the Calvinistic Theology, under the influence of the great Puritan party, in the reign of Elizabeth. It ose, indeed, out of a Sermon at Cambridge, which was denounced as heretical, because it ventured to question some of the primary points of the Calvinistic system. There the Articles were drawn up by the theological Professors, and accepted with some modifications by Archbishop Whitgift and certain other Bishops and Divines with whom he took counsel. They expressed in the most uncompromising and terrible for the main points of the Calvinistic theology; declaring, for example, that
(a) “God from all eternity has predestinated some to life ; some He hath reprobated to death."
(6) "The moving cause of Predestination to life is not prevision of faith, or perseverance, or good works, or of anything which may be in the persons predestinated, but only the will of the good pleasure of God.”
(c) “A true justifying faith and the Spirit of God sanctifying is not extinguished, doth not fall away, doth not vanish, in the elect, either finally or totally.”
(d) “Saving grace is not given to all men, by which they may be saved if they will."
Happily, however, these Articles were strongly reprobated by the Queen and her advisers, and therefore failed to become in any sense authoritative; and a subsequent petition by the Puritan party at the Hampton Court Conference for their adoption was formally refused. But both the attempt to introduce them and its failure are significant. The attempt shows a conviction on the part of the Calvinistic party that the distinctive tenets of Calvinism
are not embodied in the Articles; and that_this conviction is well founded will be seen by contrasting the Lambeth Articles with Art. xv., xvi., xvii. of our Thirty-nine Articles. The failure shows that, when formally submitted, these tenets were refused deliberately, and that they therefore form no part of the theology of the Church of England.
SECTION II.-TAE SUBSTANCE OF THE ARTICLES. THE DECLARATION.--The Declaration prefixed to the Articles was drawn up by Laud in 1628, in view of the vehement denunciations of Arminianism which had been uttered in Parliament and elsewhere, with constant appeals to the true sense of the Articles. It is put forth simply by Royal Authority, “with the advice of so many of the Bishops as might conveniently be called together." Accordingly it lays
great stress on the Prerogative of the King as “Defender of the Faith and Supreme Governor of the Church;" promises that for all questions of Ecclesiastical Regulation, the Convocation shall have licence to deliberate and, with the Royal Assent, to act; dwells with satisfaction on the general acceptance of the Articles by all Schools of opinion; forbids wresting them from their "literal and grammatical sense for curious and unhappy" discussions, and threatens penalty in case of disobedience to this prohibition. The advice is wise and sensible enough; but it must have been marred by the imperious tone in which it is conveyed.
The Articles themselves may be divided into the following groups:(A) THE ARTICLES OF THE Art. v., Of the Holy Ghost, simi. CATHOLIC FAITH.
larly declares the doctrine of the In these Articles (i.-v.) the
Holy Ghost in language like that
of the Nicene and Athanasian Church of England simply ac
Creeds. cepts, with some exposition, the great Articles Chri ian faith, These Articles, except in form as held in all ages by the Catholic of expression, belong not to the Church, and embodied in the Church of England, but to the Ancient Creeds.
whole Church of Christ. They Thus, Art. i., Of Faith in the
express the resolution already Holy Trinity, in its former clause quoted, “not to decline or vary asserts the Unity of the God.
from the congregation of Christ's head; in its latter clause the
Church in things concerning the Doctrine of the Holy Trinity.
very Articles of the Catholic
faith." Art. ii., iii., iv., Of the Son of God, declare the doctrine of the (B) THE ARTICLES OF THE RULES Son of God, His Eternal God.
OF FAITH. head, His Incarnation, Atone
In these (Art. vi.--viii.) the ment, Descent
into Hades, Church of England adopts the Resurrection, Ascension, and future Coming to Judgment. ized the Reformation in all its
great principle which characterHere the Articles simply traverse the ground covered by the forms, and which stands in direct
antagonism to the decree of the second paragraph of the Apos
Council of Trent on this subject. tles' and Nicene Creeds, and that portion of the Athanasian Creed This principle is enunciated in which treats of the union of Art. vi., of the Sufficiency of Holy the two Natures in Our Lord Scripture. It declares that Holy Jesus Christ; except that Art. Scripture contains all things neii. dwells more fully on the doc- cessary to salvation," and so retrine of the Atonement, which pudiates the co-ordination of is but slightly touched upon in Scripture and Ecclesiastical the Ancient Creeds.
Tradition laid down in the Tri.
dentine Decree. The remainder This group has two Eubof Art. vi.adopts the true Hebrew divisions : Canon of the Old Testament, as
(a) Art. ix.-xiv. have to do against the corrupted Canon of
with the great question of Justhe Roman Church, and fixes
TIFICATION, which had been the the right position of the "Apo; inspiring principle of the whole cryphal Ecclesiastical
Lutheran movement. books.
Then Art. ix., On Original Sin Art. vii., of the Old Testament,
(or rather inborn sinfulness), is subsidiary to Art. vi., simply
declares the existence of cordeclaring the unity of the Old ruption in human nature, not Testament and the New, and
wholly extirpated, even in the the permanent obligation of the
regenerate; and Art. x., On Free Moral Law.
Will, is a statement of the limi. Art. viii., of the Three Creeds, tation of freedom in humanity accepts the three Creeds as true
thus corrupted, and the incainterpretations of Scripture (in pacity of man to turn to God which the Church Catholic has
and do good works without the exercised the “authority in con, grace of God in Christ. These troversies of faith" maintained
both lead up to Art. xi., Oa in Art. xx.).
the Justification of Man. In these Articles the Church
enunciates that which is comenunciates the great principle of monly, called “Justification by the English Reformation, claim
Faith,” but which is more coring the right to reject all accre
rectly laid down as “Justifications of un-Scriptural doctrine,
tion for the merit of Our Lord as also all Ecclesiastical tradi
and Saviour Jesus Christ through tions contrary to Scripture. At faith, and not for our own works the same time it is clear that she or deservings;” and so, while appeals to the Bible as God ac
allowing the co-operation of tually gave it-that is, with in- man, places the first source of terpretation from both the faith salvation in the free Mercy of and the practice of the Christian
God through the mediation of Church.
Our Lord Jesus Christ.
From this Art. xii., xiii., xiv. (C) ARTICLES OF PERSONAL go on to deal with the true RELIGION.
position of work--that is, conIn this long group (Art. ix. scious exercise of will--in the xviii.) the Church of England Christian Life. Art. xii., On goes on to deal with the applica- Good Works, describes this position of the "objective" or abso. tively by declaring good works lute Articles of the Faith, as to be the necessary fruits of a enunciated in Holy Scripture, to living faith, and, as such, pleas. “subjective religion,” that is, to ing and acceptable to God in the salvation of the individual Christ. Art. xiii., xiv., On soul. This class of subjects had Works before Justification and naturally come into striking pro- Works of Supererogation, describe minence in the controversies of it negatively by repudiating the the Reformation, which in all its independent value and merit of phases brought out the personal works done before the grace of freedom and responsibility of Christ and the Inspiration of His every Christian, as claiming their Spirit, and the strange figment place under the authority of the of "Works of Supererogation." Gospel and of the Church. In over and above duty to God, the Continental Reformations which could only have arisen out perhaps this had been the case of a dry narrow legalism of idea. even more strikingly than in In this group of Articles the England, and accordingly in Church, while taking a line of dealing with these matters the independence towards the LaChurch defines her own position theran theology, yet (as a comin relation, first, to the Lutheran, parison with the Lutheran Conand next to the Calvinistic, fessions shews)
distinct sympathy with it, as it