4 October 2015 A.D. Jewel’s “Apology”—English Reformers slanders as “heretics,” “renegades, and “that we have torn Christ’s seat…” tpp.88-89
Jewel, John. “The Apology of the Church of England.” Project Gutenberg. 5 Aug 2006. http://www.gutenberg.org/files/17678/17678-h/17678-h.htm.
Accessed 1 Aug 2015.These things were believed of many, not because they were true, indeed (for what could be more untrue?), but because they were like to be true, and through a certain shadow of truth might the more easily deceive the simple. On this fashion likewise do these men slander us as heretics, and say that we have left the Church and fellowship of Christ: not because they think it is true—for they do not much force of that, but because to ignorant folk it might, perhaps, some way appear true. We have, indeed, put ourselves apart not as heretics are wont, from the Church of Christ, but as all good men ought to do, from the infection of naughty persons and hypocrites.
Nevertheless, in this point they triumph marvellously—“that they be the Church, that their Church is Christ’s spouse, the pillar of truth, the ark of Noah;” and that without it there is no hope of salvation. Contrariwise they say, “that we be renegades; that we have torn Christ’s seat;” that we are plucked quite off from the body of Christ, and have forsaken the Catholic faith. And when they leave nothing unspoken that may never so falsely and maliciously be said against us, yet this one thing are they never able truly to say, that we have swerved either from the Word of God, or from the Apostles of Christ, or from the primitive Church. Surely we have ever judged the primitive Church of Christ’s time, of the Apostles and of the holy fathers, to be the Catholic Church; neither make we doubt to name it, “Noah’s ark, Christ’s spouse, the pillar and upholder of all truth;” nor yet to fix therein the whole mean of our salvation. It is doubtless an odious matter for one to leave the fellowship whereunto he hath been accustomed, and specially of those men, who, though they be not, yet at least seem and be called Christians. And, to say truly, we do not despise the Church of these men (howsoever it be ordered by them now-a-days), partly for the name’s sake itself, and partly for that the Gospel of Jesus Christ hath once been therein truly and purely set forth. Neither had we departed therefrom, but of very necessity, and much against our wills. But I put case, an idol be set up in the Church of God, and the same desolation, which Christ prophesied to come, stood openly in the holy place. What if some thief or pirate invade and possess “Noah’s ark?” These folks, as often as they tell us of the Church, mean thereby themselves alone, and attribute all these titles to their own selves, boasting, as they did in times past which cried, “The temple of the Lord, the temple of the Lord;” or as the Pharisees and Scribes did, which craked they were “Abraham’s children.”