by Obadiah Sedgwick
But there were false Prophets also among the people, even as there shall be false Teachers among you, who privily shall bring in damnable heresies, even denying the Lord that bought them, and bring upon themselves swift destruction Yee therefore beloved, seeing yee know these things before, beware lest yee also being led away with the errour of the wicked, fall from your own stedfastnesse: but grow in grace, and in the knowledge of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, - 2 Pet. 3:17, 18
If any Reader should now be so unhappy in his charity as to calumniate this discovery of heresies and blasphemies to be an arrow subtilly designed against holinesse and good men: to such a one, all that I would reply is this;
1. The surest friends to holinesse have been the sharpest enemies to errours; Christ and his Apostles were so.
2. That I never yet have learned what direct advantage did at any time redound to true sanctity, by a patient endurance of heresie and blasphemy.
3. Nor can I be so uncharitable as to think, that any person sincerely holy, or pretending the progresse of holinesse, durst be a friend to such damnable and soule-destroying errours. The design which I would commend to all in this time of Reformation, is this, That truth and holinesse (which are so naturally combined, and so mutually interested) may be conscientiously promoted with equall zeal: encourage holinesse, but contend for the truth too: maintain the truth, but countenance holinesse too: he who pretends holinesse, but regards not truth; and hee who pretends the truth, but regards not holinesse, neither of these is a cordiall friend either to truth or holinesse. For your parts (Right Honourable) be you pleased to goe on (as you have begun) in the strenuous support of them both: Both of them have a necessary respect to Gods glory: both of them have a necessary respect to mans salvation: both of them have a necessary respect to our present Reformation: both of them will prove the Kingdomes safety, your consciences comfort, and the crown of all your long and great labours.
Table of Contents
To the Honourable
Of the Nature of Heresy
Of the Danger of Heresies
The Greatness of Danger by Heresies