By T. G. [Gale, Theophilus, 1628-1678.]
London, Printed, for E. Calvert, at the West End of St. Pauls, and G. Widdows at the Maiden-Head in Aldersgate-Street. 1669.
THERE is not any thing, which those of the Roman Church do more commonly and constantly boast of, (as there are many things, which they boast of to little purpose, and with less truth;) than the Vnity and Agreement in Doctrines, which they have among themselves; and the most superlatively excellent way, that they enjoy, for the preservation and continuance thereof. This Story, wit[...] a tragical exaggeration of differences amongst Protestants, serves constantly to fill up many Pages in their Writings: and is the principal subject of their Popular Declamations, where they have opportunity to vent them. And they have told this Tale so often, that many of them, especially those of the common sort, seem to believe it. Verùm ad Populum phaleras. Those who are wise amongst them, cannot but know the vanity and falshood of this pretence. It hath been already demonstrated, and may be again if need require, that there is not one point in which they differ from Protestants, wherein they are agreed among themselves. However it cannot be denyed, but that they industriously improve all imaginable artifices to conceal, at least to give a colourable pretence unto their intestine wranglings and debates: being herein, as to their design, wiser than the children of Light; though the means, whereby they pursue it, are remote enough both from wisdom and honesty. Where different Opinions, and contradictory Assertions have already been vented, and have firmed their station in the Writings of the Doctors of their Church; (as multitudes have done, and that in and about Articles of great importance;) they are ready with their Plea, that these differences, as managed by their Catholick Masters, are not of Faith, or do not impugn it, which way soever they are determined. As though the Faith of their Church were comprehensive of gross contradictions, in and about the principal Articles of Religion: and those, some of them, such, as that for Opinions of less importance they are ready to brand others for Hereticks, and to endeavour their extirpation from the face of the earth. This is the whole of what can be pretended for what is past; and therefore remediless. How destitute of truth and modesty their plea herein is, hath been declared by many. If any single Person, or lesser number of Men among them, begin at any time to apprehend and divulge sentiments different from what is generally received, (unless it be to make some advance in the furtherance and promotion of their own Secular Interest and advantages; as all the late inventions and bold attempts of the Jesuits, both in their Mystical and Moral Divinity, openly and plainly do;) they have wayes in readiness to cast them and their Opinions out of all notice and consideration; where they must lye untill the Earth give up its dead, and disclose the bloud that is secretly poured into its womb. They seem indeed, at present, signally resolved to obviate all progression in Opinions, true or false, unless they have a direct tendency to the establishment, or adoreing of their Papal Omnipotency, and the increase of their own Interest in the Consciences, and over the outward concerns of men. And herein are they so blindly zealous, as to endeavour, at this day, to fix and gild the Weather-Cock of Papal Personal Infallibility, yea, in matters of Fact, on the top of that Tower, the visible rottenness of whose Foundations threatens them with a downfall every moment. Some of their present differences, as was observed, they know, are fixed beyond all possibility of reconciliation, or hopes of removal. Such are those contradictory Opinions, which are the inseparable adjuncts of some of their Religious Orders: which as they more and more discover themselves to be irreconcileable, so the relinquishment of any of them by their respective Assertors, is so remote from all expectation, that an Age scarce produceth an Instance of any one individual Person, renouncing the Opinions of his own, and entertaining those of another Order; and if any such should be found, he would be looked upon as a Fugitive, if not an Apostate. The sense, I confess, of these differences seems to be taken from them by their commonness and certainty. It passes for granted amongst them, that in some things, wherein both sides esteem Religion deeply concerned, the Jesuits must be of one Opinion, and the Dominicans must be of another: so must it be, in other matters, between the Dominicans and Franciscans; the Hildebrandine Jesuits and the Sorbonists also. They must believe contradictory assertions and propositions in Religion; and write and preach contradictions, and confute the Opinions of one another: and on that account endlesly pursue mutual feuds and quarrels among themselves; and yet they are all at perfect agreement. But the relief herein is, that these Orders being confirmed and established, all of them, by the Pope, let them differ and contend whilst they please, so they fall not into excesses evidently beyond the tedder of former strifes, their contentions are to pass for agreements, and a part of that unity of Faith, which they boast in. But yet notwithstanding all palliating pretences, and the use of their utmost diligence, their differences sometimes arise to such an height, being animated with strong and vigorous spirits; as, if forcibly shut up too long, may threaten thei[...] whole Church State with an Earthquake; that they are necessitated t[...] forego their ordinary Artifices an[...] Excuses, and to bring their batta[...] ad Triarios, by venturing to seek fo[...] relief from the Papal See. This usually is done by one of the Parties litigant; yet not untill they find, o[...] the one hand, their own weakness[...] or that of their cause, not to b[...] maintained against the impression[...] of their Adversaries: and, on th[...] other, are sufficiently prepared to manifest, that upon the consideration of the Persons engaged; of th[...] state of all things in the places where the Controversies are agitated; and the Opinions themselves, whose confirmation they endeavour; that the determination of the points in difference, according to their desire, is not only suitable unto, and compliant with the present Interest of the See and Court of Rome; but lyes also in a handsome tendency to the enlargement of its Authority and Reputation; little or no danger being to be feared from the dis-satisfactions of the Adverse Party. These are the things, which, upon any such address, the Court of Rome doth heedfully and scrupulously enquire into. Nor will it engage towards a decision of any controverted points, untill it hath received full and ample satisfaction, that the determination of them hath an evident consistency with its honour, interest and advantage. Vntill it can come to a Resolution herein, a thousand tergiversations, delayes, pretences of avocation, and diversions by more important occasions, difficulties about the things themselves, shall be pretended and pleaded.In the mean time, by their Agents, Nuncioes, Emissaries and Confidents of all sorts abroad, they of the Court endeavour to sound the minds of the great and the many, where the Controversies are managed; and to take a just measure of the Interests of the several Parties, engaged in the contest depending before his Holiness. If upon search, inquiry and mature deliberation, it appears, that there is any thing looking towards a ballance between the Parties litigant; the managers of the Politicks of the Roman See proceed as warily, as if they feared a Scorpion under every stone in their way; or should tread on deceitful ashes, that might burn, if not consume them. For the most part, in such cases, his Holiness would be glad, on any terms, to be freed from making a decision: and is oftentimes more than half angry with those, whom he most favours, that they should bring him into any straits, by their importunity to have an interposition of his Authority on their behalf. But yet it may be things come at last to that pass, that a continued suspence, or absolute refusal to determine any thing, is judged to be more noxious and dangerous; than a determination against the Interest of that Party, which the Court is fully satisfied to be ruinable, though at present some way considerable. In this case a decision shall be made; not direct, express or absolute, in terms and propositions affirming or denying, with respect unto the controverted Opinions: but in words and terms loose, ambiguous and general; only with a favourable aspect towards them of that Party, to whom the Golden Ball of Conquest is finally intended. The use of this forlorn is only to attempt the waters o[...] strife, and to try whether they ar[...] fordable or no. If the Partie supposed the most numerous, and of th[...] most prevailing Secular Interest be[...]fore, being now reinforced and en[...]couraged by the noise of the Bull[...] which they bring home in triumph[...] can drive their Adversaries from any of their former Posts, and ge[...] ground against them: that ground shall be firmed to them speedily by new Briefs, Orders or Decrees from the Court; and so accordingly their whole progress shall be established, untill they arrive at a compleat Conquest and Victory. But if, beyond expectation, the adverse party do make a stand; and either by their number, ability, reputation, popular favour, or Soveraign influence, seem probable to keep their ground: the Court will not in haste engage into [...]ny further process; but rather [...]eave the first Bull to be reverently [...]talled for a further occasion. In the mean time it is not imaginable, with what crafts, subtilties, artifices, false promises, and pretences; by what endless Legal intricacies, Forms, Processes, Orders, Rescripts, those, who have conduct of the Roman Court, do manage themselves, and those, with whom they have to do on such occasions: all which are laid open, and discovered unto the world, by men of their own Party and Profession. And unto such a full evidence and manifestation are these things arrived, that I much question, whether any man, of tolerable Learning and observation amongst them, can be so unhappily and prodigiously stupid, as to look upon the Papal determination of Controversies in Religion, any otherwise, than as a thing utterly forreign to the Gospel of Jesus Christ; or a meer P[...]litical Engine, introduced by in [...] rest, managed by fraud, for the pr[...]servation of such an agreeme[...] amongst them, as may serve the a[...]vantage of those that are entrust[...] with it. Were it not, but that [...] power and efficacy of prejudice, [...] love of this present world, wi[...] other corrupt lusts and affection[...] do continually manifest themselve[...] in the wayes of the Children of men [...] a man could not but be astonished, tha[...] all rational men should not nause[...] ate this abominable Pageantry [...] deciding Controversies in Religio[...] by the Roman Tripos. An addre[...] made by crafty interested men, arm[...]ed with Commendatory Letters from great Men and Princes, provided with money to gratifie or bribe Officers of all sorts; unto an Old Pope, who sometimes is so ingenious as[...] to confess, that he understands little in Divinity, and knows nothing of the matter proposed to his decision: He, to take care of the interests of the Holy See, which comprehends whatever is desirable to the carnal minds of men, in power, wealth and pleasure, commends the matter to the craftiest of his Cardinals and his Courtiers, so to manage it, as no detriment may arise thereunto: Whatever the experience of Rule, Diligence, Dissimulation, false Promises, spirited by distance and veneration of greatness, pomp and power, can enable them to compass, these men will not fail to effect, so as to secure the concerns of the Court. When this is done, and it appears upon advice, which way they may steer safely and advantagiously for themselves, as to the various Interests of the persons litigant; they advise the Pope what he is to determine in a matter, that neither he, nor they have any tolerable understanding in, or comprehension of. It may be, for the farther solemnity of the business, thre[...] or four Friers of a side shall be admitted to dispute the matter in con[...]troversie, before, the Pope himself or some of the Cardinals: wherei[...] yet it shall be so provided, th[...] those, on whose side the Conclav[...] is resolved to determine, shall hav[...] one way or other, advantage enough to give countenance to the senten[...] before fixed on. When all is concluded and ready, a devout Bull [...] drawn up in a due form of La[...] wherein all these preceding jugling[...] and deceits, with others innume[...]rable, are Fathered upon the Inspi[...]ration and assistance of the Hol[...] Ghost, given unto the Pope, who ha[...] the least hand, it may be, in th[...] matter. I dare not, I will not sa[...] with that Papal Legat, Quonia[...] Populus vult decipi, decipiatur. But this I am apt to think; that strong delusion doth assuredly possess the minds of those, who can believe, that such lyes have any footstep or foundation in the Religion of Jesus Christ. And herein consists that great means of agreement amongst themselves, whereof they boast: which how long it will yield them relief in that kind, God only knows: its foundation being in the sin and blindness of the world, its continuance may be long, for ought I know. Now, Reader, that thou maist not suspect thy self imposed on, or any thing in the preceding Discourse to be asserted either partially, or without due evidence of Truth: behold here an Instance in the ensuing Treatise, wherein not only everything, that I have declared, is exemplified to the full; but also sundry other ffects of the old mysterious Iniquity the Roman See are plainly discovered. This is the Instance of Jansenisme; the Rice, Progress, State and condition whereof the ensuing Treatise giveth an Historical account. There are very few, I suppose, amongst us, who so little concern themselves in Religion, especially when it once comes to bear a share in the publick and political transactions of the Nations of the world, who have not taken notice of the discourses and reports concerning Jansenisme from the Neighbour Kingdom of France. To some, it may be, it is a murmur, which they know not well what to make of, nor what is intended by it. Others, in general, conceive it to be an expression of some differences in Religion: but of what nature, importance or tendency; how or by whom agitated or maintained, they know not. But whereas it comes under a double consideration, there are two sorts of Persons, who judge themselves concerned to obtain an acquaintance with it. For it is not only considerable as a Controversie in Religion; on which account contemplative persons, or men of Learning, professing the Truth of the Gospel, esteem themselves obliged to inquire into it to the utmost: but also as it hath an influence into the Civil affairs of that Kingdom, and may have so into those of the whole Papal World; in which respect men that are, or should be Politically wise and Counsellors do suppose, that the knowledge of the true state of it is not to be neglected by them. But certain it is, that hitherto neither of these sorts could, in any competent measure, attain their ends, without such an expence of time, pains and diligence, as very few have either will, leisure or ability to be at. For as the Theological part of this Controversie is, by th[...] industry of engaged persons, diffuse[...] through Writings and Books (man of them bulkie and voluminous almost innumerable; the greate[...] number of them written in the Frenc[...] Tongue, whereunto the generality [...] Scholars amongst us are strangers[...] that very few have been able [...] make that accurate enquiry in[...] them, as is necessary to give a ju[...] comprehension of the whole matte[...] under debate: so the Political trans[...]actions, wherein it hath been con[...]cerned, having been in the Court of Princes forreign and remote from us, in Assemblies of Prelates, in A[...]cademical Disputations and Processes it is no common or ordinary wor[...] for any to obtain an acquaintanc[...] with them. Now I am greatly mi[...]staken, if both Divines and Politicians will not find themselves muc[...] relieved, assisted and directed i[...] their inquest, by the ensuing Historical narration; as well as others, who had hitherto but a slender and uncertain report of this matter, will find themselves brought out into the clear light of such an apprehension of it, as to have in readiness a just measure of those future reports or Discourses concerning it, that they may meet withal. Now whereas any long account of the matter, treated of in this place, would but prevent the Reader in what he will meet withal in the Discourse it self; I shall only add some such remarks upon the whole, as may manifest, what hath been before discoursed concerning the unity of Doctrine in the Papal Church, and their Artifices to preserve a pretence thereof, to be exactly exemplified in this one Instance of Jansenisme. The System of Doctrines concerning the Grace of God, and the wills of men, which now goes under the name of Jansenisme, as it is in general agreeabl[...] unto the Scripture; so it had firmed it self in the common profession o[...] Christians, by the Writings of some excellent persons, especially Augustin, and those who followed him, unto such a general acceptation· as that the belief and profession of it could never be utterly rooted out from the minds of men in the Roman Church it self. For although it was variously depraved, vitiated, obscured and opposed in and by the Writings of many of the School-Men; yet alwayes, in every Age, some or other Persons of signal Learning and ability stood up, and pleaded for its vindication and confirmation, as to the substance of it. Amongst whom our Renowned Bradwardine, who with singular diligence and scholastick ability opposed the spreading of Pelagianisme in and over the Roman Church, (which by various degrees had been, for a long season, insinuating it self thereinto, and insensibly invading the remaining vitals of its Doctrine;) deserves on all occasions a peculiar mention. Moreover, one whole Order of their Fryers, out of zeal for the Doctrine of Thomas, (who was less averse from the Sentiments of the Antients in this matter, than the most of that litigious crew of Disputers, whom they call Schoolmen;) did retain some of the most material Principles of this Doctrine, however not a little vitiated with various intermixtures of their own. Not a full Age since, as will appear in the ensuing account, after the lesser attempts of some more private persons, Jansenius, a Bishop in Flanders, undertakes the explication and the vindication of the whole Doctrine of the Effectual Grace of God, with the annexed Article[...] principally out of the works of A[...]stin. This honest endeavour of h[...] being well resented, accepted an[...] approved by very many Learn[...] Persons in Flanders, and Fran[...] especially; and looked on by other[...] as an inroad made into the Kingdo[...] of Darkness and Error, which mig[...] open a way to further light an knowledge among the Papists them[...]selves; was immediately violent[...] and virulently impugned by the Jesuits, and those of their Party an[...] Faction. But whereas, in thei[...] wonted manner, they contented n[...] themselves to oppose the Opinions [...] Jansenius and his Followers, (wh[...] knowing the small Reputation [...] Truth and the Scripture now in [...] Papacy, durst not so much as avo[...] them; but chose to shelter themselve[...] under the name of Augustin, and [...] call themselves his Disciples;) in[...] Theological or Scholastical way; but endeavoured by artifices to reproach their persons, and to render them odious, and greatly to be suspected by the Church and State: they, on the other side, were necessitated, in their own defence, to make a discovery of the Arts, Treacheries, immoralities, Errors, Frauds, Lying, Calumniations, practised and defended by the Fathers of that Society, to the great satisfaction, and indeed benefit of the Christian World. The Jesuits hereby enraged, endeavour yet farther by false insinuations, complaints, Libels and suspicious Tales, managed principally by the Confessors of Kings, Queens, and great Princes, most of their Society, in a manner all of their Party and Faction, to oppress their Adversaries, and to enrage the Powers of the Kingdom against them. This work going slowly on, as being obstructed by some disputations with Conferenc[...] in and among Assemblies of th[...] Clergie, the matter was devolved [...] the Court of Rome. How the who[...] cause was there transacted, how de[...]termined, on what motives, grounds[...] Reasons and considerations the Pop[...] and Conclave proceeded, with wha[...] cunning and caution as to the se[...]curing of their own secular inte[...] rest, are exactly reported and pub[...]lished by Monsieur St. Amour th[...] Jansenist, in the Journal he hat[...] written of his own and their proceedings in that cause. How th[...] Jesuits have since pursued their success, by what wayes and stratagem[...] they have managed their tottering cause and Interest; as also of other things before mentioned, the Reader will have a faithful account in the following Narration, composed by the Judicious Author, (enabled thereunto by all sorts of Advan[...]ges) and written for his benefit. [...]his I was desired, and this I thought [...]eet to acquaint thee withal: be[...]g one, who in all things desires [...] direction unto and establishment [...] that Truth, which is according un[...] Godliness.
THis little Treatise owes [...] Production to a sober [...]riosity the Author had, to satis[...] himself and some inquisiti[...] friends, touching the [...]rue Id[...] Rise, and Progress of Jansenism [...] which has, for well nigh the[...] thirty years, made so great noise in Europe; and in all like[...] hood, will yet prove more dif[...]sive. And that which more ef[...]ctually engaged the Author in [...] Inquisition, was some advanta[...] he had to informe himself the[...] in, from his personal Conversat[...] among the different Parties, co[...]cerned in this Controversie.
The Author himself being a person disinteressed, he conceives he may, with a greater liberty, and exactitude of Spirit, make some Reflections on, and Relation of this Affair. Neither does he act the part of a Disputant, but Historian; with endeavours nakedly and faithfully to relate matters of fact, and Doctrine, according to the best Memoires he could procure, both from one & t'other Partie: wherein if he has failed of his design, it must be imputed to the defects of his Intelligence, and not to any voluntary injustice of Spirit.
Such was the Original of this little Piece; which was, in its first lines, formed into a Letter, not exceeding the bounds of one Sheet, for the private satisfaction, or rather divertisement, of some friends; but since enlarged upon the perswasion of intelligent persons, that the subject may be o[...] use, to awaken mens expectations, &c. The Author has con[...]sidered, that this small tract i[...] like to meet with as many Judges as Readers; neither is he ignorant what an hazard he runs, by committing it to publique view [...] but that, which he mostly affects· is such an exact and just Temperament of spirit, as not to be moved or influenced by the various Judgements, much less humors of men, farther than they tend to correct what is defectuous, and render him more serviceable to the Publique: and so far he hopes, that the most severe Censures will not be less welcome, than advantageous.
THE TRUE IDEA OF JANSENISME, BOTH HISTORICK AND DOGMATICK.
The Historick Idea of Jansenisme.
The Original of Jansenisme amongst the Ancients. 2. Baius the first Founder of Jansenisme. 3. C. Jansenius's character, and formation of Jansenisme. 4. San Cyran's assisting Jansenius, &c. 5. Jansenius's proper sentiments. 6. His condemnation. 7. The more full relation thereof, &c. 8. That which made Jansenius odious to the Romans, was his opposing Austin to the Popes Bull. 9. The Jansenists Deputies at Rome, and their Agitations an. 1652. 10. Other Memorials presented, by the Agents of the Jansenists to the Pope. 11. The Popes Confession in behalf of the Jansenists. A Letter from a Doctor of the Sorbon, prognosticating the little good succes which the Jansenists might expect from Rome. Two Conferences at Paris in the behalf of the Jansenists. 12. The Jansenists two first Papers prepared for the Congregation at Rome. 13. The Dominicans interpose for the Jansenists, and accord with them. 14. The Jansenists Agents, their Audience and Apologies to the Pope. 15. The condemnation of the Jansenists an. 1653. The French Formularie ensuing upon th[...] condemnation of the Jansenists; and their arguments against the Imposition there of. The Provincial Letters. The Jansenists Apologies against the Imputation of Schisme and Heresie. 16. An. 1662 Endeavors for Accommodement betwixt the Jansenists and Molinists. Th[...] Jansenists caution against Signature an[...] Formularie. 17. The main Article, that the Jansenists conforme to the Thomists 18. How far the Jansenists yield herein 19. The breaking off the Treatie. 20. The Jansenists Vindication by the Bishop of Comenge; his Letter to the King. 21. The Molinists persecution of the Jansenists. 22. The Jansenists multiplication and acceptation with Papists and Protestants. 23. Their Affairs· an. 1668, 1669.
THE design of this Discourse being to give an Idea of Jansenisme, it will be necessary to take a concise view of its original; which sprang out of the ashes of that old Controversie, 'twixt the Assertors of Free Grace, and those who asserted Free Will. For Pelagius and his Adherents having made it their busines to advance corrupt Nature, and place it on the Royal Throne of Soveraign Grace, the Lord raised up Austin and other Worthy Instruments to give check to these Antichristian Infusions· whose Indeavors did, for some Ages, set bounds to this flood of Pelagianisme. But when Antichrist arrived to his [...] or perfect stature of a Man of Sin, this Pelagian torrent grew so violent: as that it diffused its Malignant influences, throughout all the European Churches.
Yet were there not wanting some Gallant and brave Spirits, who opposed themselves to these Pelagian Infusions. Amongst these we may reckon Godescalcus, Grosthead Bishop of Lincoln, Joh. Bacon, alias Baconthorpe, Tho. Bradwardine, John Wicliff, Gregorius Ariminensis, and generally all such as follow the Determinations of Tho. Aquinas, commonly called Thomists and Dominicans; who, though in other points they have sufficiently approved themselves Devoti of Antichrist, yet in these Articles relating to Free Grace, they do generally adhere to Austin, and Thomas their Master. These Dominicans or Thomists (who have bestowed good endeavors, and that succesfully, for the suppressing of the Pelagian Dogmes) have been herein greatly opposed by the Jesuits; a generation of men, who started up about the year 1540. and have ever since made it a great part of their work, to defend, though covertly, the Pelagian Principles, as that which they conceive would prove the most effectual instrument to support the declining interest and Supremacie of the Roman Church.
The Head of this Jesuitick Faction was Molina, who is said (by the Jansenists) to have outgone the Semipelagians, in that these held, that only the beginnings of the first disposition to Grace proceed from the power of man; but as for the rest they assented readily, that man is governed by the motion and power of efficacious Grace; but Molina holds, that man is the primum mobile, and chief Master of his own salvation, from the beginning to the end: hence it was that he was condemned both in Spain, and at Rome: only the execution of the Popes Bull was, upon the importuni[...]le of the Jesuits, suspended as hereafter, §. 9. This Jesuitick design, for the reviving of Pelagianisme, being discovered by some sober Reforming Papists, they put forth their most vigorous endeavors, for the timely preventing thereof, and confirming the Doctrine of Free Grace, asserted by Austin, &c.
The first who ingaged in this nobl[...] design, for the vindication of Efficacio[...] Grace, was Michael Baius Doctor, and Professor of Theologie at Louvain; who, i[...] his Lectures and Writings, stoutly de[...]ended the corruption of Human Nature· the Sovereintie and Efficacie of Divin[...] Grace, with other Articles appenden[...] thereto. In so much that at last the[...] were 78. Propositions collected out of [...] works, which, tending to the Advanc[...] of Free Grace, and Degrading of Fr[...] Will, were condemned by a Bull [...] Pius 5th, an. 1570. and afterward by a[...]nother Bull of Gregorie 13th, an. 157[...] And moreover Francis Tolet, the Jesuit[...] was sent, by the said Pope, to Louvain, [...] settle the Vniversitie: by whose endea[...]vors, Michael Baius was induced to r[...]tract, and that by a solemne recantatio[...] the said condemned Propositions; yet so as that he still continued his privat[...] persuasions touching the same; whic[...] he ceased not to infuse into the Spirit of his Disciples, &c. Cornelius Janseni[...] as 'tis said, received the first impression of his Doctrine touching [...]fficaciou[...] Grace from Jac. Jansonius an Adherent of this Baius, who is thence made to be the first Founder of Jansenisme. Concerning Baius's 78. Propositions, for the Vindication of Efficacious Grace, and the corruption of Human Nature, and their symbolization with Jansenius his Doctrine, See Lud. Bail Articul. de Grat. Part. 1 Art. 1. &c.
The immediate Parent of Jansenisme was Cornelius Jansenius (Bishop of Ipre in the Low Countries) borne at Leerdam, an obscure Town amongst the Dutch: who having spent his first studies in Humanitie at Vtrecht, acquired his Philosophie and Theologie at Louvain from Jacobus Jansonius, a stiffe defender of Baius's opinions. Cornelius Jansenius having been throughly principled with Baius's Principles at Louvain, he was made Moderator of the College of Baion; where having contracted a friendship with John Vergerius, then Canon of Baion, and afterward Abbot of San Cyran, they enter into a strict Confederation, for the confirming and propagating the revived Doctrine of Efficacious Grace, now called Jansenisme. Jansenius returning again to Louvain, was made Prefect of S. Pulchers College· and soon after, Professor for the explication of the Sacred Scriptures. Abou[...] which time also he writ a Book· stiled Mars Gallicus, in favor of the Spanish Interest; which, they say, was the ground of his being preferred to the Bishoprick of Ipre. He writ also three Books containing the bodie of Jansenisme, collected out of Austins works, wherein he was incomparably verst: For, as 'tis said, he read over the whole of Austin ten times, and his Books of Grace thirty times. And indeed his design seems to be no other than that of Austin, for the depressing of Corrupt Nature, and advancing of efficacious Grace: whence he stiles his Book Augustinus; which he thought not meet to publish in his life time, but left it to his followers, dying, as his adversaries avouch, of the Plague in the fifty eighth year of his Age, greatly esteemed and beloved by the more serious Papists.
The great imputation the Jesuits cast upon Jansenius is his symbolizing with Calvin, wherefore to purge himself, he writ, with some sharpnes, against the Presbyterian Discipline; which Voctius has answered in his Desperata Causa Papatus. His adversaries say,
is a most certain truth, that for the hatching of Jansenisme the
Port Royal (a Covent in Paris) formed a Cabal in private
for thirty years space; whereof John Vergerius Abbot of San Cyran,
and Corn. Jansenius Bishop of Ipre, were the Heads.
And it is apparent that Jansenius had a very great ass[...]stance, for the forming and perfecting of his Augustine perswasions, from San Cyran. These having brought their design to some ripenes, began to publish their opinions, first at Paris, about 1637. both in Latin and French, thereby to awaken and in[...]orme, not only the learned, but also Vulgar Capacities: wherein they proved very successful; for in some few years a great part of France, as well Ecclesiasticks as others, was levened with Jansenisme.
In the Preface to Jansenius's works, we find this account of him. Cornelius Jansenius was borne an. 1585. at Leerdam, a small Town of the Netherlands.---When he entered on the Studie of Theologie, he was brought into the C[...]lege of Adrian 6. at Louvain, by Ja[...] Jansonius the Moderator. After sharpe a[...] assiduous studies, for some years, he [...] into a consumtion, and danger of his lif[...] whence, by the advice of Physicians, [...] purposed, for change of Air, to go in[...] France. He first went to Paris, whe[...] he instructed some youth. He then[...] went into Cantabria, now called Bisca[...] in Spain; where, by conversation wi[...] learned men, and familiar communic[...]tion of Studies, he made great Progr[...] in the understanding of the Father[...] especially of St. Austin.
Being afterwards recalled to Louvai[...] he was made Prefect of S. Pulchers Co[...]lege; which he greatly adorned and a[...]vanced. Afterwards finding the care [...] youth to hinder his studies, he retired [...] a private life, admitting only the societ[...] of a familiar Doctor. He thence was cal[...]led to be Regius Professor, of the Sacre[...] Scriptures: which he performed wit[...] great learning and profit, as it appea[...] by his Commentaries. But his Magnanimitie appeared most after his being made Bishop of Ipre, in his Meditation and attemts to Reforme the Bishoprick: which undoubtedly he had perfected, had not he been taken away by a contagious death (with in one years space after his being Bishop) an. 1638.
He was of a most sharpe, acute ingenie; a most profound judgement, and capacious memorie. He had somewhat of a subtile Choler; which he was wont pleasantly to compare to cornes of Gunpowder; which in one and the same moment, are inflamed and expired. To these endowments of Nature, he added an immense desire of Truth, and Indefatigable Studie. Being asked by a companion, what Attribute of God he most adored? he answered, his Truth. In the beginning of his Theologick Studies, he mixed with the Scholemen, the Lecture of the Fathers, especially of S. Austin; whence he learnt, how much the Scholemen erred from Austin, in the head points of Grace and Free Will. He told his familiars, he had read Austin's Works diligently, ten times over: and has Books against the Pelagians thirty times. He said, that next to God and the Scriptures, A[...]stin was to him instar omnium.
He strugled, for many years, with [...] old opinions, before he could reach th[...] intimate sense of S. Austin. He said [...] depended upon that one first principl[...] [...]ouching Grace. And he added, ther[...] could be no truly spiritual life formed[...] but according to this Doctrine of Grac[...] taught by Austin: and that Christian hu[...]militie was in a more particular regar[...] founded hereon.---Whence he oft consulted souls spiritual and truly humble, touching their sentiments of Divine Adjutorie, the infirmitie of Free Will, and the necessitie of Divine assistance to every good Act. He affirmed, that no one could be truly humble, without the like Opinions of Divine Grace. He ended the last period of his Book with his life, as though he had been borne for that design. He was not superstitious, or scrupulous, but burned with masculine pietie, and fervent charitie towards God and men. He prepared himself in the morning by Meditation, and the whole day was but a continued Meditation of God, &c.
As for John du Verger, Abbot of S. Cy[...]an, I find him to have gained a great [...]putation amongst the more serious [...]atholicks. They say, that through the [...]bundance of Grace, which possessed his [...]eart, he extinguished, even from his [...]ore tender years, all Ambition, all love [...] riches, with all desire of human fa[...]r, and Ecclesiastick Dignitie; and having [...]onsecrated the whole of his Spirit, la[...]ors, and life, for the defence of truth, [...]e lived in great solitude, even in Pari[...] [...] self, for more than twenty years; af[...]ecting to have his Spirit free from all [...]rouble, inquietude, vanitie, and complea[...]ance; thereby to obtain the more leisure for the Studie of Wisdom. Thus did his Sanctitie darken the lustre of his Science; and his Humilitie draw a veil upon all his Intellectual and Moral accomplishments; and, as 'tis said, he labored as much not to seem eminent, as to be so in truth. Which affected retirement and concelement of his excellent qualities, made him to be esteemed by some, as Melancholick and Morose: but this imputation was sufficiently removed by his Imprisonment; which rendred him mo[...] famous and serviceable, in that all so[...] of persons had recourse to him for a[...]vice. He had indeed, as they say, a ma[...]vellous fecunditie of Spirit, joined with[...] natural eloquence, and noblenes of speec[...] which rendred him very useful; he b[...]ing capable, without long meditatio[...] to expres the highest Truths, and re[...]der them familiar and easie. He was v[...]ry skilful in comforting, and establishin[...] troubled Consciences; directing them [...] the blood of Christ, and his Grac[...] which Jansenius also was wont to do.
S. Cyran usually founded his advice o[...] the Scriptures, which he ever commend[...] as the best Rule and Guide for Christian[...] He would often, in his life time, discour[...] of the Grandeurs of God; of the N[...]thingnesses of the world, and of the d[...]ties of Christianitie. His sage instruct[...]ons were generally reputed by the Devo[...] Catholicks, as Evangelick and Apostoli[...] Counsels. Neither did he propose a Ple[...]tonick Idea of Soverein perfection, whic[...] might be better admired than imitated[...] but he gave counsels, general and particu[...]lar, most easie and familiar for execut[...]on, by the Grace of God; of which he was a great Admirer; acknowledging still, that without Efficacious and Soverein Grace, we could do nothing.
He prescribed the most excellent method for bearing afflictions, not with a Philosophick Generositie, but with a Christian Constance, which he himself also practised, in an eminent degree, for the space of five years, whilest he was in Prison, au Bois de Vincennes, near Paris; whence most of his Letters extant were written, which seem very warme, and sparkling with that Divine fire which burned in his heart. In these his Letters he gives us many sublime and choice instructions; yet such as are most familiar and practicable. He exhorts much to self emptines, spiritual povertie, humilitie, faith in Christ, and more especially to love God more than our selves, and our neighbors as much as our selves; which, according to his Master Austin, conteins the Morals, Logick, Physicks, and Politicks of true Christian Wisdom. He is very much in shewing the usefulnes of afflictions; asserting, that it is the greatest temtation to have no temtations. He also acquaints us with the Art and Skil[...] of bearing Christs Crosse, wherein h[...] himself seems to have been familiarly and feelingly versed, especially for th[...] time of his Imprisonment, which wa[...] very severe and strict; besides many and very great infirmities of bodie, under which he labored; yet with a very great vigor and vivacitie of Spirit; which his Discourses, Letters and Actions sufficiently testified. During this time of his imprisonment, notwithstanding the strictnes of his Guard, he was possessed with a great calmnes and tranquilitie of Spirit, without fear or trouble.
Touching the proper sentiments of Jansenius, and S. Cyran, and their mutual combination; we have a pretty true, though invective, account given us by the Jesuit Gautriche, Histoire Sainte (pag. 325. edit. 1661.)
In our Age, (saies he) which is the seventeenth, Jansenius Bishop of Ipres, incited by Du Verger Abbot of S. Cyran, as the Letters which they have reciprocally written testifie, has brought to light the errors of Godescalcus, founded upon some passages of S. Austin, taken in the sense, and after the fashion of Calvin. For after having supposed a terrible sort of Predestination in God, by the which he chooseth some of those whom he sees envelopped in Original Sin, to save them; entirely abandonning the others unto eternal damnation, he teacheth consequently that Jesus Christ has not died for these latter, nor merited any Grace sufficient for to save them; and that therefore it is impossible, in this case, for them to observe the Christian Law, to the observance whereof they are notwithstanding obliged: and farther, that they cannot, saies he, resist the movements of concupiscence; which hurries them into sin; and that they sin necessarily; nevertheles he teacheth, against all sort of common sense, and against the holy Scripture, that they cease not herein to have the Libertie required to merit or demerit; and that the Predestinated cease not to be likewise free in the actions of Grace, albeit they cannot resist, when they are prevented therein, &c. Thus Gautruche.
1. Some Precepts of God are impossib[...] for persons just, willing, and endeavoring according to the present strength they hav[...] to performe; and there is wanting to the[...] Grace, by which they may be made possible.
2. Interior Grace in the state of lapse[...] nature is never resisted.
3. To merit and demerit, in the state [...] lapsed Nature, there is not required in man a Libertie from Necessitie; but a liberti[...] from coaction sufficeth.
4. The Semipelagians admitted a necessitie of preventing, interior Grace to all acts, even to the beginning of faith; but in this they were heretical, that they made this Grace such, as that the human will might resist or obey it.
5. It is Semipelagian to affirme, that Christ died, and poured out his blood universally for all men.
These Jansenian Propositions were sent, by the Jesuits, together with an Epistle to the Pope, with desires, that the whole might be determined by his Apostolick Authoritie. The Heads of the Jansenists had recourse also to Rome, and after long contests, the Jesuits obtained, May 31. 1653. a Bull from the Pope, whereby these five Propositions, conteining as they pretend, the substance of Jansenius's Errors, were condemned, as rash, impious, and blasphemous. This Decree was received by the Prelats of France, with the Kings approbation, July 15th of the same year. The Jansenists finding themselves oppressed by calumnies and [...]inister dealings, durst not openly oppose the Popes Bull, only they contend that the five Propositions were not condemned in that sense in which Jansenius asserted them. Whereupon their Adversaries the Molinists (so stiled from Molina their Head) procured a Declaration from the Bishops of France, that the said five Propositions were taken out of Jansenius's Augustinus, and condemned in his sense. Which Judgement of these Bishops was confirmed by Innocent, an. 1654. as also by a new Bull of Alexander the 7th, As Horat. Tur[...]illinus the Jesuit, in his Epist. hist. on the year 1653.
But we have a more faithful and full relation, of these transactions 'twixt the Molinists and Jansenists at Rome, by M. de Saint Amour, in his Journal: where he sheweth how this contest began first amongst the Sorbonne Doctors about the year 1646. and continued very warme and violent in the several Assemblies of the Facultie, from that time unto the year 1650. especially an. 1649.
We find a good account of the Reasons and Motives, which induced the Jesuits to condemne Jansenius's Augustinus, in the Confession of M. Albizzi (the Jesuits Patron) unto St. Amour, in these words:
He told me (saith S. Amour) that the Jesuits held themselves greatly offended by Jansenius S. Augustinus, especially by the third Book, which I should find was nothing but a continued detraction against Vasquez, Suarez, Gregorius a Valentia, Bellarmine, &c. He added, that that Bishop was full of venom against those Fathers, and the whole societie; that he broke out into unimaginable exorbitances against them; that this greatly provoked them against his Book, and obliged them to solicite Vrban VIII. for the prohibition which he made of it; that had not he first assaulted them, perhaps they would not have thought fit so to do; but after he set upon and outraged them as he did, it is no wonder that they have endeavored to be revenged on him. He continued to exaggerate to me the exorbitances of that Author, who not only fell foul upon the Societie, but even broke forth against Popes; as among other places of his Book, that shews it, where he saith: Haereo fateor, &c.
In the year 1650. the Jesuits or M[...]linists recommended their cause to the Pope, by a Letter thus:---
Its ten years since that France has been disturbed by Jansenius's Posthumous Book and Doctrine. Such movings ought to be allayed by the Autoritie of the Council of Trent; also by the Bull of Vrban 8th, & the Decrees of Pius 5th, and Gregorie 13th, against Baius· And thou hast vindicated the truth and vigor of this Bull, by a new Diplome. But, because no one Proposi[...]tion apart has been censured, there [...] yet left place for the Cavils of some which we hope may be wholly inte[...]cluded, if your Holines shall clear[...] and peremtorily define, what we [...] to believe herein, &c.
That the quality of Bishops impowred them to judge of Controversies arising within their own Dioceses that this power was signally infringe[...] by this Letter. They told him furthe[...] of the danger there was in judging his matter, without having first examin'd the parties; and above all, what necessitie there was, that before any thing be done, the propositions in Question should be discussed and scanned, according to the places from whence they were produced, &c.
Most Holy Father, we have understood that some of our Brethren, Bishops of France, have written to your Holines touching an affair of very great importance, which last year raised great disturbance, without any benefit, in the Theologick Facultie of Paris: nor could the issue be otherwise; for being contrived purposely in ambiguous termes, they could produce nothing of themselves, but disputes, full of animosities, about the the various senses put upon them. Wherefore our Brethren must give us leave to declare, that we cannot approve of their Design in this matter. For, besides the Questions about Divine Grace, and Predestination are full of difficulties, and not ordinarially handled withou[...] violent contests; there are other ver[...] considerable reasons, which give u[...] ground to conceive, that this presen[...] time, is not fit, for the terminating o[...] so important a difference; unles you[...] Holines will please, in order to passing [...] solemn judgement upon it (which seem[...] not to be their intention) to proceed therein, according to the forme practised by our forefathers, to resume the affair from its original, and to examine i[...] wholly and entirely, to that end summoning and hearing the reasons of either side. For otherwise the condemned partie, may with justice complain of having become so by the calumnie and Artifices of their Adversaries, &c.
The Substance of this letter (as St. Amour gives it us) was,
That the Divines be first heard, for the distinguishing the several senses of the propositions; that so the censure may fall only upon that which is bad, and which all the world acknowledgeth such; but the catholick sense may be safe· and exemted from the censures; that so both sides having been heard, each may receive is Holines's judgement with respect, and without stir, and without having cause to complain, of not having been heard; and to make new Remonstrances, which would renew the Quarrel. The same St. Amour addes, that the 5. propositions were contrived in obscure ambiguous and equivocal words, so as to be capable of several very contrary senses, according to the different interpretations that may be put upon them. That some of those senses are evidently heretical; others most certainly Catholick, and containing the chief Truths of faith and Christian Religion. That the Authors of those propositions framed them in this manner, that so, under pretext of those bad senses, they might get a down right absolute condemnation of them, and apply the same afterwards to the Catholick senses and Orthodoxe truths, which they include. That M. Cornet was the man that first broacht them, proposing them to the Facultie, almost two years ago, to get them censured; but a great number of Doctors presently understanding the artifice, and discovering the dangerous consequences thereof, both to the publick, by some books publ[...] against that attemt, and to the Cour[...] Parliament, by two petitions wh[...] they were constrained to present [...] stopping its course; it incur[...] the indignation of all sincere a[...] equitable persons, that heard of [...] and was repressed by an Arrest of [...] Court, which prohibited M. Corn[...] and all others to pursue it, whereso[...] the busines having failed in the facult[...] and being not thought fit to be set [...] foot in the Assemblie of the Clergi[...] for fear of the same successe, they reso[...]ved to venture it to the Holy See, &c.
Saint Amour being Agitator [...] the Jansenists Affairs at Rome he [...] ordered, by letter from Paris 3 Mar[...] 1651,
Incessantly to inculcate to tho[...] at Rome, that the Question was sole[...] about effectual Grace, and sufficien[...] Grace subject to free will; and th[...] neither Jansentus, nor his followers fur[...]ther held the said propositions, than [...] they were reduced to the point of effe[...]ctual Grace.
I observed (sait[...] he) about this time, that one of the capital causes why the name and opinions of Jansenius were so odious to the Romans, was this; namely that place of his Book, where objecting to himself against S. Austins doctrine, the Buls of Pius the fifth and Gregorie the thirteenth, he answers, that truely he is surprized at those Buls: Haereo fateor, &c. This doubt and seeming combat hath given great advantages to the Jesuites against him &c.
Octob. 17. 1651. S. Amour had Audience of the Pope; wherein he insisted much on the former desires of the Bishops, to have the 5. propositions, presented to the Pope under equivocal termes, distinguished and cleared, that so the condemnation, which followed, might be clear and distinct, &c. But the Pope told him, that after Clement the eighth, had caused this matter to be debated, in his presence for a long time, by the most excellent men; yet he could not decide any thing therein, but was fain to impose a perpetual silence. Wherefore it behoved to acquiesce in that order, and live in peace, &c.
Decemb. 5. 1651. there arrived at Rome, the Deputies of the Jansenists, namely M. Brousse; M. de Lalane [...] M. Angran, who together with S. [...]mour, were to agitate their Affairs; [...] order whereto, they make several visi[...] and conferences with Cardinals, &[...] The first Audience they had of [...] Pope was Jan. 21. An. 1652. (Ne[...] Stile) at the end whereof they deliver[...] to him their first memorial, pronounce[...] by M. Brousse, wherein he insiste[...] mostly on the necessitie of discussing an[...] clearing the said 5. propositions, thereb[...] to discover Austins true sense and judge[...]ment thereof, &c. The Substance of th[...] Popes answer, was little different from that he gave Saint Amour alone. He told them, that
he would not have them make mention of Jansenius; because that after his book had been examined and compared with the doctrine of S. Austin, they, who had been imployed therein by Vrban the eighth found, that Jansenius held propositions very different from St. Austins Sentiments, &c.
And because his Holines spake of what passed under Clement 8. as if after his time nothing had been done in this affair; and that the thing remained unde[...]ded,M. Brousse prayed his Holines to [...]rmit him to revive in his memorie, [...]at point of historie; and he told him, that after the death of Clement 8. when the Choice of his successor was in agitation, it was determined in the Conclave, before they preceded to Election, that he who should be chosen, should finish what Clement had begun, touching the matter de Auxi[...]iis.
That therefore Paul V. (who succeeded Leo XI. Whose papacie lasted but a few daies) immediately after his promotion to S. Peters Chair, reassembled those Congregations; that the matters having been examined anew, at the instance of the Jesuits, for defence of their Molina; who, they said, was ill understood, and ill defended to the Congregations under Clement, the matter was at length so terminated, after many Congregations, that 50 propositions of Molina were condemned; that the Bull was prepared and ready to thunder forth, but that which hindred it was the quarrel of Venice; from whence the Jesuits being driven, prayed his Holines not to publish that Bull, which would quite overwhelme them; promisi[...] him (what they have not kept) [...] renounce Molina, and no longer tea[...] those evil Maximes, &c. St. Amour adde[...] That in the like case Clement 8. i[...]ployed the whole year 1597, in asse[...]bling the Consultors, whom he cho[...] for his Congregation. That the first tim[...] they were seen together, was the 2d d[...] of 1598. That that year, and the fo[...] following, all passed without the Pop[...] being present in those Congregation[...] That the first time their Congregation[...] were held in his presence, was Marc[...] 20. 1603. That to know how thing[...] went during these 5 years, he cause[...] what passed among the Consultors [...] be reported to himself from time [...] time, by persons sure and faithful. Thu[...] St. Amour Journal. fol. 146.
Being discoursing of the Congregation[...] de Auxiliis, under Clement 8. I shall adde a storie, which S. Amour (fol. 115.) saies, he had from a learned Dominican, who told him,
that Clement 8. was at first very ill bent against the doctrine o[...] Grace, by reason of many complaints made to him, by the Jesuits against the Dominicans, but being assured by the General of the Dominicans (whom he greatly esteemed) that it was not an interest of the Scholes that was in question, but the cause of Faith that is concerned; and that the opinion, which the Jesuits introduce into the Church, is a depriving God of his Crown; so that 'tis no longer he that gives us Paradise; he is no longer master of his Gifts and Graces, &c. This discourse, and the rest which the General added to it, so affected Clement 8. that he w[...]s desirous to learne more particularities about this matter, and from that time forward Clement 8. received many little memoires from this General, which served him to informe himself therein. At length when this General had given Clement 8. the first tinctures of this matter, the Pope liked well his request, namely that he might present unto him, some other Divines of his own order, with whom he might confer as agreably as with him about these matters, &c.
The Molinists send also M. Hallier, Legault, and Joysell, Doctors of the Facultie, as Deputies to Rome, to sue fo[...] Censure of the five Propositions, [...] things already condemned, and witho[...] admitting any Examen or Congregatio[...] Which were things mainly in[...]isted up on by the Jansenists.
July 11. 1652. the Agents for th[...] Jansenists had a Declaration from Cardi[...]nal Roma, that the Pope had erected th[...] Congregation they demanded, for th[...] hearing and determining their affairs. Bu[...] their Adversaries, the Molinists, indeavored what they could, to hinder an open hearing, in the presence of either side. In the beginning of November, Lalane, St. Amour, and Angran, Solicitors for the Jansenists, compose certain Memorials, which they present to the Pope with this Preface.
Holy Father, your Holines having establisht the Congregation for examination
of the Grand Questions concerning Grace, we thought fit, before all things,
to compose two Writings, which we present to your Holines; one whereof
contains what hath passed in the affair under debate, and the other
concerneth St. Austins Autoritie---Soon after St. Austin's
death, some Priests of France found fault with his writings, and
troubled the Peace of the Church, by indiscreet Questions; whereupon Prosper
and Hilarie had recourse unto Celestin---Who ordained that
the Autoritie and Doctrine of Austin, should
remain inviolable. Molina having had the boldnes in Spain,
to renew these ancient complaints made of the Priests of France, and
once again to make head against the same St. Austin, and this new
Doctrine being accused to the Holy See, in which Clement 8.
presided at that time, this holy Pope would not have the cause examined
before him, till he had first ordained, that the Autoritie of S. Austin
should be approved---The like did Pope Paul 5th afterwards. Yet
there are found at this day New Censors amongst the Priests of France,
who to defend Molina's Doctrine, have had the Presumption
to rise anew against St. Austin, by Questions they borrow from the
Schole of those Authors already condemned, and who call in doubt the
Principal Articles of Christian Grace. 'Tis for this cause that w[...] are come to your Holines in the nam[...] of some of the most illustrious Bishop[...] of France---We have complained o[...] the Propositions which have been invented
to prepare Ambushes for the Doctrine of St. Austin.
And to the en[...] they may be
examined, and this whol[...]
affair fully and perfectly cleared; w[...]
have sued to your Holines for the erection of a Congregation, in
which both sides might be heard viva vice, and by writing. Your Holines
hath accordingly establisht it: and to th[...]
the end your Holines might have the goodnes to practise, from the
entrance of this contest, the same that Pope Celestin did
heretofore, and Clement 8th since, in occasions perfectly like to
this, for the defence of S. Austins Doctrine and Autoritie,
and to support with a new recommendation; we have conceived, that before all
things we ought to summon our Adversaries to acknowledge the Autoritie
and Doctrine of that Saint, not only with unprofitable and
ineffectual words, or deceitful Elogiums and Praises, full of disguisement
and fiction, but by solid and expres approbations---We know that there is no
practice, or endeavor omitted by our Adversaries, to hinder the effect of so
just and necessary a Demand; we know that there is nothing in the world,
which they f[...]ar so much, as
to be constrained to subscribe, as they ought, to the autoritie of St. Austin,
or to see your Holines, treading in the steps of Celestin 1. and Clement
8. confirme it anew, and repres the temeritie of these Censors---Your
Holines will hear with wonder, that after having openly attaqued S. Austin's
Doctrine, with their utmost strength, both by themselves, and by the help of the
Jesuits, whose defenders and confederates they are, they now openly
proclaim their submission to it. They will have the boldnes to professe
themselves publique Panegyrists, and defenders of that Father, even
in the presence of your Holines. But their doing thus, will be only
to palliate the contemt they have of him, with feined respect, and to free
themselves from blame; it will be only to avoid the punishment of their
insolence wherewith they outrage him, [...]
will be only to hide the aversion whi[...]
they have for his Doctrine, under [...]
commendation which they give un[...]
his person; it will be only to dimini[...]
the care, which is to be had in these Co[...]troversies,
in examining which are [...]
true sentiments of that holy Father [...]
and to make it believed, that it [...]
not concerned in the Propositions, sin[...]
themselves who impugne them p[...]fess
to follow the Doctrine of th[...]
Father, and so reverence his autoriti[...]
to the end that having avoided the co[...]demnation
of their temeritie by su[...]
feined Elogiums of S. Austin, and [...]
off, without being obliged to subscri[...]
to any thing, they may, with the[...]
Partisans, thence forward reject [...]
autoritie with more boldnes than ever[...]
and banish his Doctrine from the[...]
Scholes as Calvinistick: especially [...]
case your Holines should condemne th[...]
Propositions: because they will no fail afterwards, to make the censu[...] fall upon S. Austin, and that
not with[...]out ground.
These are the designs [...]
our adversaries---which if they shoul[...]
take place, it would be an exposing the principal inheritance, which
the holy See possesseth, to pillage, as no doubt it would come to passe by
the contemt of S. Austins Autoritie and Doctrine; it would
be a nullifying the autoritie of all the Fathers,---it would imply, that the
Church had unjustly condemned the enemies of Grace; it would give
occasion to believe, that the holy Council of Trent favored the Pelagian
Hereticks, and gave new forces to the Calvinists.
This Epistle was subscribed thus:
The Pope would not receive these Jansenists Writings, &c.
July 1652. St. Amour
(as he repo[...] fol.
211.) received a visit from [...]
Archbishop who told him, that he [...]
conferred with the Pope that morni[...]
about their Affairs. That his Hol[...]
himself gave occasion to the Discour[...] and told him,
That he still remembr[...] the time, when the Congregations [...] Auxiliis were held under Clement [...] and Paul 5. that he knew all [...] world was then for the Dominica[...] against the Jesuits; that for a lo[...] while together, the publication of [...] Bull, whereby the Jesuits were co[...]demned, was daily expected; that [...]vertheles it was not publisht, thoug[...] they well deserved it. But it was co[...]ceived, that the Holy See acted pr[...]dently, in not publishing their con[...]demnation; because, though the sai[...] Definition, would have appeared wi[...] the general satisfaction of all intelligent persons, yet those matters surpassed the reach of the unlearned, and the generalitie of the faithful. That moreover the Pope said, that he knew the Jesuits Sentiments were not good; and that if he condemned them, there were no persons of Learning and Abilitie throughout Europe, but would be satisfied and well pleased therewith; but that these Truths were so far above the ordinary capacitie of man, and the weak being much more numerous than the strong, more would be scandalized, than edified with such condemnation, &c.
The more to elucidate the Intrigues of the Molinists, and to discover what suspicions there were amongst the wiser Jansenists, of gaining little advantage to their cause, by applications to Rome, I shall give the mention of some memorable passages, written in an elegant Letter, by a Doctor of the Sorbon, to St. Amour, dated June 16. 1652.
Sir I received, together, the two large Letters you writ me, full of testimonies, of the confidence and friendship, wherewith you are pleased to honor me. If I durst, I should find fault with your going too far therein: for I can make no other construction of your too favorable judgement of me, than that it proceeds from a singular Affection, which gives you an opinion of me, far above what I acknowledge in my[...]self. I have alwayes written unto you in sinceritie; and freely signified unto you my thoughts and sentiments concerning your journey to Rome, about the Affairs which you manage there, and concerning the proposals, which you have made to me. And because I see things not altered, or at least varied only in appearance, and some circumstances, I cannot change my judgement or disposition. 'Tis true, what you tell me, that Residence at Rome is dangerous, in regard of the corruption of the mind, which oftentimes carries its poyson into the bottom of the heart, without being taken notice of, insensibly corrupting Faith and Reason it self, by human prudence, and a manner of life and deportment altogether Political, which people contract there, unles they be prevented, by Gods special protection and favor. And to tell you the truth, though I am much averse from that vice, which passes for virtue in the world, yet I account not my self so strong, but that I think fit to avoid even the occasions of it. Nevertheles 'tis not this alone, which keeps me from coming to you, and taking upon me that part, which you would assign me, in the Affairs, wherein you are engaged. If I conceived I could be as serviceable therein as you apprehend, and could it reasonably be hoped, matters would be so carried, and have such Effects and Issues as you aim at, solitude should no longer detain me, nor the danger of the waies, and Residence at Rome, keep me from offering my sel[...] to God, to do him service, and second you in that, which you indeavor to performe to him. But I am so strongly persuaded of the contrary, both by potent consideration taken from human Prudence, as well as from Reasons Divine, and founded upon the present posture of things, that all the Remonstrances in your Letter, have not moved me; although otherwise I may say (I think) without flatterie, that I am so devoted to satisfie my friends, as far as my ability reacheth, that I can scarce deny any thing unto them, without doing violence to my self; especially in things wherein the service of God is concerned---No Sir, I ca[...] not believe, that ever there will be [...] regular and free Conference, about th[...] matters in contest at this day: an[...] should there be one appointed, an[...] persons found capable of debating th[...] questions on either side, and Judge[...] intelligent enough of the Truth, an[...] sufficiently impartial to determine them
I could not promise to my self, the succes, you aim at, and seem to hold for certain. All that could be hoped, so far as I see, from such a conference, and most upright Judges, is, that things would remain as they are. Should the Arbitrators be disposed to do some thing more, and to pronounce in favor of Truth; they who have been inveigled into the contrary part, the Temporal Powers ingaged with them, and the Spiritual would quite stop the passing of such judgement, thereby to avoid offending many of the world; and, under pretence of eschewing division, leave things as they are. If you judge my conjectures, and the consequences I draw from them disagreeing from your own thoughts, yet I am confident you cannot but say, that the suppositions which I make, and from whence I draw these consequences, are very favorable. For leaving you to find persons capable to propose, and maintain the Truth befittingly in a regular conference, I think you will not be backward to confes, that there is not the least likelihood of finding Iudges sufficiently intelligent, in these matters; sufficiently well affected to truth, and sufficiently armed, against all sorts of Interests, to pronounce in its favor, when they have discovered it. And if there were truly such, undoutedly one of the Parties would except against them, or elude and prevent their judgement. These matters have been agitated, examin'd and determin'd also, in abundance of the most important questions and difficulties, by the Autoritie of two great Popes, very learned, and of upright Intentions: and you know what have been the Issue of those conferences, which lasted many years. You are far from seeing your Affairs in so fair a way; and if you promise your self a better issue thereof, I attribute i[...] to your Zele, and the Affections you have for the cause you manage; which makes you build too much, and ground the hopes of your justly desired succes, upon the good reception that hath been shewn you, and the fair words which have been given you. You will permit me to mind you, that that coin is very current in the world, and more in the place where you are, than in any other: tis that wherewith all payment is ordinarily made; and many times where there is least Will and Power to give, the promises are largest.---All the proposals of Accommodation made you, touching the Bishop of Ipres Book, seem to be as suspicious, as the promises that are given you, and are of much more dangerous consequence. You know, Sir, by experience, in some general and particular Assemblies of the Facultie, in which you were present, how all people easily hearkned unto such Accommodations; how it is easie to be inveigled to remit some thing of the Interest of Truth, in such cases, either by surprize, or by weaknes, covered with the pretext of peace; and how such Accommodations and Modifications are prejudicial to the Truth. These are wounds which prove afterward irremediable; because they are made by such, as professe to defend it; and in this they injure it, more than they, who openly imp[...]gne it, and are its greatest enemies. I confesse to you, I could never read without pitie (and I speak it too without any indignation) the Objections and Proposals made to you, about the Bishop of Ipres Book, and the Bull: and that which most amazes me, is, that they which made these Objections and Proposals, passe for persons very intelligent, and well affected towards the Truths of Grace. For to replie, that M. d' Ipre, intending to justifie some propositions of S. Austins, found among those of Baius, which have been condemned, and desirous to reconcile the Autoritie of the Holy See, and of the Bull, which seems to condemne them, saith Haereo; 'tis but to quarrel with that great Lover and Defender of S. Austin; and to indict him for a word, and for a word very well spoken, and which shews his grea[...] moderation, amidst his great knowledge, and zele for the Truth. How frequently doth S. Austin use the same manner of speech, when he meets with some difficultie. Other particulars wherewith he is charged, flow from the same fountain, and are no lesse unjust than groundles. If he hath written of the matters of Grace, since a prohibition of the Holy See, he is not the only man that has done so; but 'tis he alone that hath written in that manner that he hath done, having only reported the sentiments of S. Austin, whom the Church owneth, not only as one of its pillars, but as its Master and Teacher, particularly in the matters of Grace: and he writ his Book being a Prelat and Pastor of the Church. Nevertheles, by a most manifest injustice, endeavors are used to get his Book subjected to censure, and to acquit all others---You see, Sir, with what libertie I write: 'tis an evidence of the sinceritie of that Affection I bare you, and of the confidence I have in yours. Assure your self, I do not forget you, in my Addresses to God; I represent to him your Affairs and Necessities as mine own, and beseech him to make me, as I desire to be, alwaies more and more yours; which I shall look upon as his mercie towards me, and the making me more to be his. I desire you to beg the same, &c.
This Apologetick Letter, in the behalf of Jansenius, against the Molinists, I am [...]pt to belief was written by Mr. Ar[...]auld Doctor of the Sorbon, and then Head of the Jansenists.
August 1652. There were two Conferences held at Paris, in the presence of some persons of Qualitie, between M. de Sainte Bevre and F. l' Abbe the Jesuit, touching the Subject of a work publisht by this Father, in reference to the controversie, betwixt the Jansenists and Molinists. The Father (saith St. Amour fol 126.) received much confusion therein, having been convinced of foul dealing or little intelligence of the points, whereupon they conferred. The Substance of this conference is given in a letter, which M. de Sainte Bevre writes to M. St. Amour, from Paris, Aug. 2. 1652.thus:
Sir The discourse of [...] Annat. is the common discourse of th[...] Societie. Those good Fathers publish[...] here, as well as at Rome, that the Po[...] is to pronounce with all speed; and whi[...] they are told there is no congregation y[...] setled, in which the parties may be hear[...] they answer, that his Holines will [...] hear any parties; and that their Societ[...] hath resolved, not to enter into a conferenc[...] either at Paris or at Rome, touchin[...] the controverted doctrine. This is what th[...] F. L'Abbe said to me in the conferenc[...] I had with him---wherein he propo[...]sed to dispute at large of matters [...] doctrine; whereunto I assented. H[...] propounded 5 points 1. That M. d' I[...] was condemnable, as having written [...]gainst the Council of Trent, and consequently against S. Austin, That a [...] moved by Grace, is necessitated, as to hi[...] libertie. Whereunto he was answered, [...] That such a man was necessitated, in sen[...] composito, but not in sensu diviso, an[...] told, that M. d' Ipre saith no more [...] which is not condemnable, unles th[...] whole Schole of S. Thomas be condemned too. After many Contestations th[...] Father was obliged to consent with us. The Second was concerning sufficient Grace; and it was proved to him, that M. d' Ipre denied none but the Molinistick. The Third was concerning the necessitie of sinning without Grace. The Fourth concerned the Commandments: and I shewed him, that the Doctrine maintained by us, as to this point, was held by all the Thomists, the Defenders of Congruous Grace, and the Church in her prayers. The Fifth Question was reduced to final perseverance; wherein I proved, that what the Father held, was the Doctrine of the Pelagians, &c.
August 15. 1652. the Delegats for the Jansenists received an extraordinary summons, from Cardinal Roma, at the instigation of M. Albizzi, to provide, within a fortnight, the Writings, which they were to deliver unto the Congregation. The two first they got ready within the time, and subscribed on Austins day. The first contained, what passed about the five Propositions, since M. Cornet propounded them to the Facultie, from July 1. 1649. till that time: namely what was done in the Assemblies of the Facultie July, August, and September, 1649. The false censure, which they publisht throughout all France, and sent to Rome, under the name of the Deputies[...]f the Facultie; what was done in Parliament, Octob. 5. and concerning the patcht peace, made in the Facultie, in September; the Theses, which M. Hallier signed as Syndic; in which the first and third Proposition, in the sense wherein we held them, were maintained in Sorbon, with his approbation, Jan. 1650. The Letter, which M. de Vabres procured to be subscribed, by a multitude of Bishops; the subscriptions begged here and there in all societies, &c. One thing also these Deputies of the Jansenists observed, in this writing, not before observed; namely,
that all these enterprizes were designed to procure, by such scandalous and oblique waies; the destruction of S. Austin's Doctrine; which they veiled under the obscurities of these Equivocal Propositions, contrived purposely to deceive.
that to the end all things might be done, in this Affair, without fraud and confusion, before the examination of the Propositions were proceeded unto, they might be altered and reduced into the several senses, whereof they were capable, in such sort, that they might be free from all equivocation.---That the senses being thus distinguisht, and separated into several Propositions, we might declare, which were those which we abhorred, and anathematized, with the whole Catholick Church; that our Adversaries might be obliged to keep the same course, &c.
They added also, to the end the Doctrine of S. Austin might remain safe and intire in the Church, and to give their Adversaries place to clear themselves, the Propositions following.
1. That any Doctrine, Proposition, or Opinion, touching the matter of Grace, Free Will, or Divine Predestination, which shall be found to be St. Austins, or nece[...]sarily coherent with his Doctrine, cann[...] be in any wise condemned either of Here[...] or Error, or with any other kind of ce[...]sure whatsoever.
2. That never any Doctrine of S. Austi[...] hath been condemned of error by any Pope[...] or approved Councils.
3. That the Council of Trent hath [...] defined or taught any thing, that is con[...]trary, in any sort, to S. Austins Doctrine [...] Grace.
4. That all which S. Austin has hel[...] against the Pelagians, and Semipelagian[...] as Catholick Doctrine, ought likewise to [...] held for such.
5. That to affirm, that S. Austins Doctrine, touching Grace, is uncertain, contrary to its self, exorbitant, obscure, hars[...] unworthy of the Clemencie of God, littl[...] suitable for edification of the faithful, &c· i[...] injurious to the whole Catholick Church.
6. That supposing the Holy Scriptures, and Definitions of Popes and Councils; the Doctrine of S. Austin touching Grace is a most clear and certain rule, by which the Propositions in question, and all other generally whatever, concerning Grace, Fre[...] Will and Divine Predestination, may be examined, with certaintie, and also by right ought to be so.
These six Propositions the Deputies of the Jansenists demanded, that their adversaries might be obliged to acknowlege, together with them for true, and indubitable, in order to the clear & plain stating of principles on which both sides were to proceed.
This was the substance of their first writing, which had this Title, The first Information upon matter of Fact.
Their second Writing was larger than the former, and contained their first information concerning matter of Right, and was thus intituled: The Tradition of the whole Church in reference to the Autoritie of S. Austins Doctrine. This second Writing contained eminent Testimonies, touching this matter, of more than twenty Popes, of as many General Councils, National, or Provincial, and about sixty either Fathers, Saints, or illustrious Divines, &c.
And to prevent the imputation of being tedious, they deew a model of both their Writings, the Conclusion whereof was,
that having thus establisht the Auhtoritie of S. Austins Doctrine, they h[...] nothing to fear, in reference to [...] Propositions; since they were [...] likewise to shew clearly, that the sens[...] in which they held them, was as cer[...]tainly the Doctrine of S. Austin, as th[...] had shewn invincibly, that his Doctrin[...] was that of the Church. And mo[...] over they publisht this Cartel of Defi[...]ance to the whole Molinistick Parti[...] That they were certain, and spoke [...] without fear, That that holy Doct[...] would be found so congruous to a[...] that they maintained, that their adversaries, however they might rack their brains, could never propose any argument, drawn from human reason· or the Holy Scriptures, which they could not make them see, had been proposed to S. Austin, by the Pelagians or Semipelagians, and resolved against them by this holy Doctor; and which we could not in like manner refute, very easily, against our Adversaries, by the answers and Doctrine, which we should extract out of his works.
That there was nothing they wisht more, that assoon as the autoritie of the said Doctrine was acknowledged, and confirmed, as it ought to be between their adversaries, and them, to proceed forthwith, with equal diligence and confidence, to make appear, in the examen of the Propositions, what that Doctrine was.
What issue and effect these Writings obtained, is given us by St. Amour thus:
We were busied, saies he, at Rome all this Moneth (of November) in the most vigorous and assiduous pursuit, that was lawful for us to make there, for the first Audience in the Congregation; which we demanded might be granted to us together with our adversaries, after our first Writings had been communicated to them; to the end they might come to such an audience, prepared to answer to those Writings, and to what we should adde thereunto viva voce. We could neither obtain to have a day set for such a first Audience; nor that our Writings should be communicated; nor know whether they would grant us either one or tother. In the mean time the Jesuits and the Doctors, their Adherents, continued triumphing at Paris before hand, for the approaching condemnation of the Propositions, of which they held themselves sure, and in which they involved ours. By this means they caused great doubtings in our friends, what might be the issue of the Congregation; which was signified to us, by a Letter, wherein they injoined us severely not to deliver any instruction, which might ingage us in a single processe by writing. Also M. de Sainte Beave writ to me, to continue our instances, that the Authors of the Propositions might be known, our innocence declared, and the Necessitie of Effectual Grace establisht, which was the whole point of the question; and that if we could not obtain this, that at least it might be inserted into the Bull, in case any were made, that we had alwaies declared, that we undertook the defence of the Propositions only in the sense, wherein they implyed the Necessitie of Effectual Grace: that by this means the Bull would be favorable to us, and moreover make our adversaries pass for Calumniators and successors of the Semipelagians, as well in their manners and proceedings, as in their Doctrine.
In the beginning of the year, 1653. The Agents of the Jansenists solicite afresh, for the reception of their Writings, and Memorial. And the General of the Dominicans, with the rest of that Order at Rome, interposed effectually in the behalf of the Jansenists. They prepared a Memorial, which they intended to present to the Pope, wherein they gave a full elucidation of the Controversie, and that more expresly than the Jansenists durst do. For 1.
They defend Jansenius expressely, in reference to the five Propositions, and formally maintain, that they were not his, &c.
that although these Dominicans explicated these Propositions, in the same manner as they did, and, no lesse than they, maintained the common Doctrine of Effectual Grace; yet these Dominicans did it in terms incomparably more powerful, than the Jansenists durst express themselves in. 3. These Dominicans shew, that the Jesuits have three pri[...]cipal intentions in this Affair. 1. To [...] Molina his opinion obliquely define[...] 2. To overthrow all that was done [...] ten years, in the Congregation de A[...]xiliis: And 3. To ruine S. Austins A[...]toritie, &c. But the Pope would gi[...] no Audience to the General of the D[...]minicans herein, though he request[...] i[...] seventeen or eighteen times.
March 4. 1653. Cardinal Barbarin d[...]mands of S. Amour, why they ([...] Jansenists) did not wholly join wi[...] the Dominicans? to which he answer[...] thus:
They do their own business, a[...] we ours: we may have our particul[...] aims and pretensions, though their Do[...]ctrine be no wise different from ou[...] at least at the bottom.
That he could not affir[...] any thing as to that, but no doub[...] there are such small Graces, as the Th[...]mists call sufficient, and acknowledge as well as they, not to be such really in the sense, wherein the world takes the word sufficient, since they do not suffice; there being need, besides these Graces, of that which is effectual by it self, to perform the good action, which would not be done without it, &c.
April 8. In the evening, saith S. Amour, I visited F. Reginald a Thomist, who speaking concerning their sufficient Grace, I told him, we agreed in the thing, and therefore needed not dispute about words. That we could not grant, those small Graces were given unto all generally; nor should we say, that they gave a perfect, next, and complete power; because those terms were abused, as well as that of sufficient, the world understanding thereby a power whereunto nothing is wanting; though we denied not the thing which they understood by those words of next power. Thus S. Amour fol. 335.
May 4. S. Amour was assured, that there was a Bull or Constitution made, by which the Propositions were condemned: which put them upon fresh addresses to the Pope. May 19. the Pope gave the Agents of the Jansenists a Grand Audience: which was the first and last they had, of all that had been promised them. Mr. de Lalane Abbot of Valcroissant, pronounced an Oration, in the name o[...] the rest, before the Pope, in these words:
Most Holy Father, We are obliged to represent to your Holines, by how many Artifices, and secret Ambushes, some persons imploy certain obscure, equivocal, and maliciously contrived Propositions, to undermine the Church at this day, by assaulting, and indangering the Doctrine of S. Austin, touching the Grace of Jesus Christ, so often approved by the Holy See, and autorized, without discontinuance, by the universal consent of the whole Church.---This enterprise, against the Grace of Jesus Christ, hath proceeded so far, that in regard of the close union of S. Austin with S. Paul, in what concerns this matter, we see, that at this day, the Enterprizers fear not to attaque them both together, by daring to accuse them both of having passed even into excesses.---'Tis not, Most Holy Father, by vain imaginations, but by invincible proofs, that we shall manifest to your Holines, this publique Conspiracie of the Jesuits formed against S. Austin. Behold, in my hands, above an hundred Propositions against that Saint, drawn out of several Books made since fifty years, by the Jesuits; which shew, that the boldness, wherewith they assault him, increases daily, in such sort, that they incessantly charge him with new, and greater outrages.---We know Most Holy Father, that our Adversaries make semblance of reverencing his Autoritie: But this is only to put a feigned respect upon their real disdain. 'Tis only to hide their aversion from his Doctrine under the commendation of his person.---Let our Adversaries choose to take him wholly, or leave him wholly to us:---But our Adversaries would have not only S. Austin, but also the Grace of Jesus Christ divided---We confess that this matter is spinose. Nature, which flatters us, never ceaseth to oppose in us the mysterie of the Grace of Jesus Christ: Our Reason seeks means, on all sides, to free it self from that absolute submission which we are obliged to have for God. It insinuates every thing that favors this connatural pride in us. S. Austin himself confesseth, that without thinking of it, he continued long in the error of the Semipelagians, and got not out of it, 'till after a deep meditation of the holy Scriptures; particularly of S. Paul. And therefore 'tis no wonder, that, in all times, there have been found so many difficulties and repugnances, to cure the minds of the faithful of the error of Pelagianisme. Besides all which, there is a determinate resolution for Molina's de[...]ence of the whole societie o[...] the Jesuits---But Most Holy Father, though Nature and Reason are very unapt to comprehend, what is the Grace of Jesus Christ, and though this Doctrine be invelopped, as with so many clouds, by the various new inventions o[...] new Divines, and by the equivocations of the Propositions in question; neverthelesse we dare boldly affirme, that albeit this mysterie is very profound, ye[...] it is not so difficult to understand, provided the means be used, &c.
The Jansenists presented also to the [...]ope a compendious Distinction of the five [...]ropositions, touching Grace; shewing in [...]ree columns the several senses, where[...]f the said Propositions are capable: of [...]hich see S. Amour. fol. 365. When M. [...] Valcroissant had ended his Oration, he [...]old the Pope,
his Holines should be much more inlightned in the things, which were alleadged, when they came to be treated more leisurely and throughly before him, in the presence of their adversaries.---He added further, that the connexion, which he had mos[...] clearly demonstrated of the Propositions reduced to their sense, with the point of Effectual Grace by it self, evidently shewed the necessitie of beginning the discussion of this Affair, by the examen and proof of the Efficacy of Grace, by it self; both because all the rest depends upon it, and the proof of it serves for a general proof of the Propositions. ---When the Abbot of Valcroissant had done, Des Mares began, and continued the series of his Discourse,
May 26. there was a strong Rumo[...] touching the publication of the Bull[...] against the five Propositions, which wa[...] accordingly, in some short time after· accomplished.
The BULL runs thus:
Sanctissimi in Christo Patris, ac D. N. Innocentii, divina Providentia Papae, decimi constitutio, qua declarantur ac definiuntur quinque Propositiones in materia fidei.
CVm occasione impressionis libri, cui titulus Augustinus Cornelii Jansenii Episcopi Iprensis, inter alias ejus opiniones lis orta fuit, praesertim in Gallia, super quinque ex illis, complures Galliarum Episcopi apud nos institerunt, ut easdem Propositiones nobis oblatas expenderemus, ac de unaquaque earum certam & conspicuam ferremus sententiam.
Tenor vero praefatarum Propositionum est ut sequitur.
1. Aliqua Dei praecepta hominibus justis, volentibus, ac conantibus, secundum praesentes quas habent vires· sunt impossibilia; deest quoque illi[...] gratia qua possibilia fiunt.
2. Interiori gratiae, in statu naturae lapsae, nunquam resistitur.
3. Ad merendum ac demerendum i[...] statu naturae lapsae non requiritur in homine libertas a necessitate, sed sufficit libertas a coactione.
4. Semipelagiani admittebant pr[...]venientis Gratiae interioris necessitatem ad singnlos actus, etiam ad initium fidei: & in hoc erant haeretici, quod vellent talem esse, cui potest humana voluntas resistere.
5. Semipelagianum est dicere Christum pro omnibus omnino hominibus mortuum esse, vel sanguinem fudisse.
Nos quidem inter multiplices curas, quae animum nostrum quotidie pulsent, illa imprimis cordi est, ut Ecclesia Dei, nobis ex alto commissa, purgatis pravarum opinionum errori[...]us, tutò militare, & tanquam navis in tranquillo mari, sedatis omnium tempestatum fluctibus ac procellis, secura navigare, & ad optatum portum pervenire possit.
Pro rei gravitate coram aliquibus S. R. è Cardinalibus, ad id specialiter saepe congregatis, a plurimis in Sancta The[...]l[...]gia Magistris, easdem quinque Prop[...]sitiones, & supra nobis oblatas singulatim diligenter examinari, eorumque suffragia tum voce, tum scripto relata mature consideravimus; eosdemque Magistros variis coram nobis act[...]s congregationibus prolixe super eisdem, & super earum qualibet disserentes audivimus.
Cum autem ab initio hujusmodi discussionis ad divinum implorandum auxilium multorum Christi fidelium preces tum privatim tum publice indixissemus, postmodum iteratis iisdem ferventius, ac per nos implorata s[...]llicite Spiritus Sancti assistentia, tandem divino numine favent[...] ad infra Scriptam devenimus declarationem & definitionem.
1a. Primam praedictarum propositionum, Aliqua Dei praecepta, &c. Temerariam, impiam, blasphemam, anathemate damnatam, & haereticam declaramus.
2a. Secundam, Interiori gratiae, &c. haereticam declaramus, & uti talem damnamus.
3a. Tertiam, Ad Merendum ac demerendum, &c. haereticam declaramus, ac ut[...] talem damnamus.
4a. Quartam, Semipelagiani admitte[...]bant, &c. falsam & haereticam declaramus, & uti talem damnamus.
5a. Quintam, Semipelagianum, &c. falsam, temerariam, scandalosam; & intellectam ex sensu ut Christus tantum pro s[...]lute praedestinatorum mortuus sit, impiam, blasphemam, contumeliosam, divinae pieta[...] derogantem, & haereticam declaramus.
Mandamus igitur omnibus Christi fidelibus utriusque sexus, ne de dictis propositionibus sentire, docere, praedicare alite[...] praesumant, quam in hâc praesenti nostr[...] declaratione & definitione continetur, su[...] Censuris & poenis contra haereticos, & eorum fautores in jure expressis.
Praecipimus pariter omnibus Patriarchii[...], Archiepiscopis, Episcopis aliisque locorum ordinariis, nec non haereticae pravitatis inquisitoribus, ut contradictores & rebelles quoscunque per censuras & poenas praedictas, invocato etiam ad hoc, si opus fuerit, auxilio brachii Saecularis, omnino, coerce[...]nt, & compescant.
Non intendentes tamen per hanc declarationem & definitionem, super praedictis quinque, Propositionibus factam approbare ullatenus alias opiniones, quae continentur in praedicto libro Cornelii Jansesenii.
Romae apud Sanctam Mariam majorem anno Domini 1653. prid. Cal. Junii Pontifi.
June 13. The Agents
of the Jansenists signed this Resolution (before they went to take
leave of the Pope)
After the Publication of the Popes Decree against the five Propositions, there being no more hope to obtain of his Holines the solemne and Regular Congregation, which we solicited for the space of two years, as most necessary in this conjuncture, in order to a full clearing of matters controverted between St. Austin's Disciples, and those of Molina, we conceived that we had nothing left but to prepare our selves to return into France.---We have judged in the presence of God, that we ought not to subscribe the condemnation of those Propositions, without excepting the sense of Grace effectual by it self, and St. Austin's Doctrine, which the enemies of both have designed, in obtaining this condemnation, to overthrow---We have resolved not to subscribe that condemnation, though the Pope require it of us, but with this clause. Propositiones ab Innocentio Papa X. damnatas nos iterum damnamus, ut semper antea damnavimus, salva tum Gratia Christi per seipsam efficaci ad singulos pietatis actus necessaria, tum doctrina Sancti Augustini; quibus nolle se praejudicium ullum afferre, Summus Pontifex multaties testatus est.
The five Propositions of Jansenius having been condemned by a Bull of Innocent 10th, (May 31. 1653.) and upon the Jansenists pretending these Propositions were not condemned in Jansenius's sense, there being a new Bull given out by Alexander 7. condemning these Propositions in the sense of Jansenius, the Jansenists were hereby crusht, and brought under a severe Persecution. For hereupon the Molinists got the General Assemblie of the French Clergie (as I take it an. 1654.) to frame a Formularie, answerable to the foresaid Bull of Alexander 7. for the condemning of these five Propositions in Jansenius's sense; which all Ecclesiasticks were ordered to sign, or else to be deprived of all Ecclesiastick employment. This formularie great numbers, in heart Jansenists, are induced, by virtue of some mental reservations, to subscribe unto; but such as are thorough paced and professed Jansenists, look upon it as their great glorie and Interest, to passe for Non-Conformists, though with the losse of their Dignities and Preferments; yea with incurring the censure of Excommunication. The Arguments, by which the Jansenists defend themselves against signing this formularie are these.
1. That there is no Ordinance of the Church, which commands all the world to signe her decisions under pain of Heresie. 2. That the Pope commands none to signe it; neither has he as yet made any person to signe it. 3. No one speaks of signing this formularie in Forrein Provinces, nor in the whole Church. 4. None but the Assemblie of the Clergie has ordained, that we signe her formularie; but this Ordinance is neglected by all as illegitime, it having not been approved by the Pope, nor by the Bishops; yea, the Jesuits themselves have been constrained to abandon this Formularie, whereof notwithstanding they were the Authors.
The Jansenists, though excluded from all publick imployment, cease not to defend themselves and their cause, partly by Apologies for themselves, and partly by attaquing their enemies the Jesuits, especially as to Morals. An. 1656. there were published seventeen Letters to a Provincial, (which in the English Version is stiled the Mysterie of Jesuitisme) wherein the corrupt notions, principles, and distinctions of the Jesuits, for permitting and allowing the practice of all manner of [...]in, are brought to light. These Letters have much galled the Jesuits, especially since they have been examined and censured by some of the Bishops and Ecclesiastick Assemblies of France.
After the condemnation of Jansenius, his Adherents the Jansenists, to wipe off the aspersion of heresie imputed to their charge, first, as to name, call themselves, not Jansenists, but Disciples of S. Austin;
For (say they) Jansenius makes Profession to teach nothing; but to report simply what St. Austin taught on the matter of Grace and Free Will, without b[...]ing any thing more than his Interpreter. In such sort, that if any could clearly discover any one point, throughout his whole Book, which was from himself, and not from St. Austin, he should be abandoned by all, and condemned by his own proper judgement. Whereas (adde they) Molina, on the contrary, vaunts to have published a Doctrine which was never known before; and his followers the Jesuits glorie in the title of being Molinists.
As to the thing it self, and matter of their Doctrine, the Jansenists endeavored to vindicate themselves from the imputation of [...]eresie by certain Articles, and Apologetick Discourses touching their opinions. As for their Articles we find this mention of them in their own writings.
Now these Divines (say they, meaning the Jansenists) have exposed their sentiments, in the Articles which they sent unto the Pope, and his Holines has, by his last Brief, declared, That they contained an holy and Orthodoxe Doctrine. The Bishops, and most habile Divines, who have seen these Articles, have given the same judgement of them avowing, that they had nothing in them but what was Orthodoxe. And Mr. the Bishop of Commenge has expresly testified it to the King, when he had the honor to present the Declaration of these Divines to this Majestie, which intirely referred to the Doctrine of these Articles.
The Jansenists also vindicate themselves from the imputation of heresie, by several Apologies they publish in defence of Jansenius, and thems[...]lves, touching their sense of the five Propositions condemned. Arnauld (in Latin Arnoldus) the chief of the Jansenists, after a Letter of his, which was censured, writ a Theologick Dissertation, the design whereof was, to confirme their manner of speaking touching Efficacious Grace. This Dissertation was composed on the occasion of a Writing, which the Abbot Hilarion (a person particularly esteemed by the three former Popes) sent him from Rome, touching Efficacious Grac[...]. Wherefore this Dissertation having been sent to Rome, (first in Manuscript, and afterwards printed) not only to the Abbot Hilarion, but also to Cardinal Barberin, and to another Cardinal; it found favorable acceptation with them. And notwithstanding all the importunitie, which the Jesuits used, to render this Doctor odious at Rome, yet could they never get this his Dissertation condemned. The design of this his Theologick Disertation, was to prove Efficacious Grace; which he makes good by more than eighty passages of Scripture, of Popes, of Councils, of Fathers, of Divines both ancient and moderne, yea of the Jesuits themselves.
Since the year 1654. the whole controversie, 'twixt the Jansenists and Molinists, has been reduced to a matter of Fact, viz. What is the sense of Jansenius touching these five Propositions?
The Jansenists tell us, they have accurately declared, what they intend by the sense of Jansenius, in the first and third Disquisition of Paul Irenaeus: as also in the first and fourth part of Denis Raymond; which were composed on purpose to clear the sense of Jansenius, as also that of his Adherents about these five Propositions.
That I may leave no room for suspicion, I declare farther, that by the sense of Jansenius, which I sustain, I intend no other Doctrine on the subject of the five Propositions, than that of Efficacious Grace, of it self necessary to all actions of Pietie, in that manner, in which it has ever been, and still is sustained by the Schole of St. Thomas, and is recognized as Orthodoxe by all the Church; and I reject as an heresie that saying, That this Efficacious Grace necessitates the Will, and that it takes away the power of non-consenting, as it follows in this Book. More particularly, Denis Raimond (Premiere Partie Chap. 1.) makes good these Articles, viz.
Art. 1. That Jansenius undertook not to oppose sufficient Grace as delivered by the Thomists, but as laid down by Molina, pag. 33.
Art. 2. That when Jansenius calls s[...]ffi[...]cient Grace a Monstre, he sp[...]aks only [...] Suarez's sufficient Grace of Congruitie, not [...] that maintained by the Thomists, pag. 36.
Art. 3. That Jansenius doth recognize the Sufficient Grace of the New Thomists as to i[...]s realitie, albeit he gives it not that name, nor holds, that it gives a proxime power of operating, pag. 37.
Art. 4. That Jansenius, in what he was taught of the next p[...]wer, hath said nothing, but what is conforme to S. Augustin, S. Thomas, and the ancient Thomists, with many of the New pag. 41.
Ar[...]. 5. That Janseni[...]s, in what he has delivered of Efficacious Grace, [...]ffirming, that it gives not only the wi[...] to act, but also forces; likewise that it [...]ides the feeblenesse, and heals the infirmitie of the will, hath taught nothing; but what agrees with the sentiments of all the Thomists, albeit some speak in other termes, pag. 49.
Thus Denis Raimond Eclaircissement du fait, & du sens de Jansenius a Cologne 1660.
Paulus Irenaeus (to whom also we are referred) tells us, (Disquisit. 1. Art. 3.) that the whole Doctrine of Jansenius, as relating to the five Propositions, as conteined under these two heads. 1. That Efficacious Grace, by which the Will in infallibly, but without necessitie, applied and determined to act graciously, is necessary to all good actions and to prayer it self. Neither does Jansenius attribute more efficacie to this grace, than the Thomists. 2. That in the state of corrupt nature there is no sufficient Grace in the Molinian sense, &c.
Thus the estate of Affairs stood betwixt the Jansenists and Molinists unto the year 1662. Neither can I as yet learne, that there passed any thing considerable, besides what has been mentioned, save persecution, of which hereafter.
About the end of the year 1662. there being a likelihood of a breach 'twixt the King of France, and the Pope, the Molinists begin to incline to terms of accommodement with the Jansenists: neither were there wanting some moderate Bishops (well-wishers to the Jansenists) who were very zelous in the prosecution of this design; who also received a Commission from the King, to transact this affair, and bring it to some issue. The Prelats, who had part in this Conference, were Mr. the Bishop of Comenge, Mr. the Archbishop of Paris, and Mr. the Bishop of Laon. The Agents in behalf of the Jansenists (who named themselves the Disciples of St. Austin) were the Sieurs de Lalane, Girard, &c. Arnauld (the Head of the Jansenists) refused to ingage in this Conference, as 'tis conjectured, from a Pr[...]vision he had of its little successe. In the behalf of the Molinists, there appeared none but P. Ferrier the Jesuit, who was notwithstanding (as 'tis said·) influenced and acted by his Chronie P. Annat, on whom the whole societie of the Jesuits repose the main stresse of their designs and affairs against Jansenisme.
The chief of the Prelats, that were Mediators in this Treatie, was Monsieur de Comenge, who sent from Tolouze, a writing thus titled,
A Project for Accommodement between those whom we call Jansenists, and those who are named Molinists, debated betwixt the Bishop de Comenge, and P. Ferrier the Jesuit.
In that say they, this whole Treatie was on their part (viz. the Jesuits) no other than one continued perfidie; seeing that they have since avowed, that they alwaies meant, they should condemne the sense of Jansenius; that is to say, that they should acknowledge, that the Doctrine condemned in the five Propositions had been taught by Jansenius.
This Treatie began about February 18. 1663. (New Stile.) That which was first proposed by the Bishop of Comenge, as the most proper expedient to reconcile the two parties, was, that the Jansenists, to free themselves from all suspicion, should declare, That they had no other sentiment about this matter, save what was taught by the Thomists. But inasmuch as there is a difference amongst the Thomists; and that (for example) the manner of speech used by Gregory Ariminensis, Estius and many others, is different from that of Alvarez; the Molinists demanded, that the Jansenists should reduce themselves, to the forme of speech used by Alvarez, and others, who writ according to his sentiment. And the reason they alleaged of their demand was, that Alvarez having assisted at the Congregations de Auxiliis, there is a grand apparence, that he, and those others who writ at the same time, and since took up this mode of speech to salve Libertie, according to the movements and sentiments which the Popes Clement 8. and Paul 5th had; albeit they made no Decree on this matter. It was added, that if the Jansenists would determine in this, all contestations would end; because the opinion of these Thomists being taught as Orthodox, there remained not betwixt the Jansenists and the Molinists any more, than the Contestation which has for a long time been between the S[...]hole of the Dominicans, and that of the Jesuits, which has not made any rupture of communion, nor yet of charitie between these two Orders. And in this their hearts would be entirely reunited, albeit their Scholes were not.
The Jansenists answer to this Proposition contained these two parts: 1. That they had refused, and that not without reason, to tie themselves up generally by a publick engagement, to all the expressions of Alvarez; because he was not the rule of the Church, or measure of their faith. Yea, many famous Divines and entire Faculties; as those of Lovain and Doway, serve not themselves of all his expressions. 2. The other part of their replie was a Declaration at the same time, that there was in the explication of their sentiments, which they were disposed to give on the five Propositions, that which was conforme, not only to the Doctrine, but also to the expressions of these New Thomists.
The Disciples of St. Austin (adde they) have alwaies said, that the Doctrine of Jansenius on the five Propositions, seemed not to them different from that of the Thomists.
1. That the design of Jansenius was not directly to render himself conforme to the Thomists. 2. That yet in the chief of those points, wherein the error of Jansenius is made to consist, his Doctrine is not only by consequence, but formally conforme to that of the Thomists. 3. That the most part of those general and indefinite Propositions, by reason of which they would fain perswade the world, that Jansenius was opposite to the Thomists, he himself in other parts of his Book does so restrain and limit, as that 'tis evident he intended nothing lesse than Nonconformitie to the Thomists.
That the said ingenious Author used, and that not without reason, somewhat more than ordinary warmth and indignation against some particular persons of the Order of S. Dominick, who being joined to the Molinists by a Spirit of Cabal and of faction, served themselves of the equivocate term of Sufficient Grace, thereby to deceive the world, as though they were agreed.
Notwithstanding these Concessions of the Jansenists, the Molinists were not satisfied, but began to flie off unto their old demands (peradventure from a praevision they had of an accord betwixt their King and Pope) for a signing the Formularie, and condemning the sense of Jansenius, on the five Propositions. This the Jansenists judged a very hard and unreasonable demand. 1. Because it was formally and expresly against the main Praeliminary Article, granted in order to the Treatie. 2. If they could (adde they) have signed the Formularie, &c. they had not needed any such Treatie for accommodement, for they should then have been esteemed as good Catholicks as their adversaries the Molinists. 3. They judged it too great tyrannie to make the peace of the Church depend upon a matter purely of fact, and not of faith: For (say they) suppose the Disciples of St. Austin (asserting that the five propositions condemned, were not to be found in Jansenius's book, nor yet condemned in his sense) should be deceived in this their Interpretation of Jansenius, yet, seeing they condemned the five Propositions, as well as others, their Error was not in a question of Faith, but purely of fact, such as could not bespeak them Hereticks.
For, adde they, the common light of Reason as well as Faith, teacheth the most simple, that two things essentially separate, viz. a particular fact, and a Doctrine of Faith, may also be separated in the creance of Believers, and therefore there is no shadow to imagine, but that one may assent, that the Doctrine of the five Propositions is Haeretian, without assenting, that they are to be found in the Book of Jansenius: as if the haeresie of the Doctrine should depend on Jansenius; or that it should be haeresie no where but in his book.
The Jansenists to purge themselves, after this Treatie drew up certain Articles, (which I suppose were the same with those they offered in the Treatie) containing the explication of their own sentiments, on the five condemned propositions. These Articles they sent to Rome, with their submission to the Pope, not (as they phrase it) a submission of Faith, but only a submission of Respect or Discipline; which notwithstanding was acceptable to the Pope. After this Mr. De Lalane, and Mr. Girard presented a Declaration to the King, by the hand of the Bishop of Comenge, containing the Abridgement of what they had offered in the Treatie, and what was comprehended in their Articles sent to Rome. This Declaration having been condemned by some of the Bishops, is vindicated by a Letter from the Bishop of Comenge [...]o the King, dated Jan. 21. 1664. Thus,
I avow Sir, that it seemed to me, after I had obliged those whom they call Jansenists to declare (their sense) there could not be any more of heresie or hereticks in the Church, the door being shut both to Error and opiniatretie. In effect, Sir, in those Conferences, which the Sieurs, the Abbot De Lalane and Girard had, in the names of all those who are engaged in this cause with P. Ferrier the Jesuite, they were reduced to declare so neatly what was their Doctrine on the subject of the five Propositions condemned, (wherein all that is called Jansenisme is comprehended) as also to speak so precisely the language of the Thomists, which is received in the Church, that there cannot remain any thing of Errour in their Dogme,---In such sort, Sir, that on the one side making them to speak as the Catholick Schools speak; and on the other side, they having submitted themselves to have no other sentiments, but those of the Holy See, there remains not more of Error, or of Opiniatretie. Now their last Declaration, which I had the honour to present to your Majesty, signed by [...] Sieurs de Lalane and Girard, is but [...] Abregement of all that we have do[...] in nine months travail. They rene[...] in this Act the Assurance which the have given me, and the See by me, [...] to have any other sentiments on [...] five Propositions, but what a[...] contained in their Articles, and t[...] submission which they have made [...] these very Articles to the judgement[...] his Ho[...]ines. For this Declaration [...] relative to the Articles, which we[...] sent and submitted to the Pope, an[...] which contain the sentiments of the[...] Theologiens on the five Propositions.---It is true, Sir, that they place not [...] the same rank the submission, which they render to the Definition of Dogmes, and that which they render to the Definition of particular facts; because the one is a submission of Faith, and the other is a submission of Respect, and [...] Discipline. Things being thus dismingled and differenced, Sir, your Majesty may, when you please, give peace to the Church of France, in pursuit of the generous dess[...]in which your pietie has given you to [...], &c.
The Molinists since the Treatie, have been very active and pressing on the King for his Declaration, against all such as will not sign the Formularie, and condemnation of Jansenius's book. The Jansenists have not been wanting, to give their reasons against such rigorous procedures; affirming,
That there was not as yet any ordinance of the Church obliging thereto; neither was this Formularie approved by the Pope or Bishops, yea that the Jesuits themselves were forced to abandon it as before.
The Reason of Apostolick Government, by Divine Providence committed to us, though undeserving, requires that we applie our whole mind and care, so far as we may, in the Lord, unto such matters chiefly, as are most conducible to the conservation and propagation of the Catholick Religion, to the salvation of souls, and to the repose of Believers. 'Twas from the Intuition hereof, that we endeavoured the Second year of our Pontificat, by an express constitution published by us on this design, to put a period to the Heresie of Cornelius Jansenius, which spread it self principally in France, and which after it had been well-nigh stif[...]ed by Innocent 10th our Predecessor of happie memorie, ceased not as a Serpent, whose head is broken, to make fresh efforts, and to appear willing to save it self by its ordinary turnings and windings. But as the enemy of mankinde has an infinitie of Artifices to hinder the succes of good designs, our endeavours (whose only but was to oblige all those who have erred, to re-enter into the way of salvation) have not had that issue we desired; albeit our desires have been happily seconded by the pains and industrie, with which our Venerable Brethren, the Archbishops and Bishops of the Kingdom of France have applyed themselves, so far as they could, to cause the said Apostolick Constitutions to be executed; and by the singular pietie of our very dear Son in our Lord, the most Christian King, who has for the same purpose afforded us the succour of his hand, with an extraordinary vigour and constance. Moreover, the most Christian King being induced, by the zeal he has for Religion, to remonstrate to us by his Ambassadour, that the best remedie to extirpate the restes of this contagious M[...]ladie, is to cause all the World to sign one Formularie founded on our Autoritie. In pursuit whereof, we command that all Ecclesiastiques, &c. to subscribe the following Formularie.
submit my self to the Apostoli[...]
Constitution of Innocent X. dated, Ma[...] 31. 1653. and to the Constitution of Alexander
7th, dated Oct. 16. 1656. the chi[...] Bishops: and I do with a sincere mind re[...]ject and condemn the V
Propositions, t[...]ken out of Cornelius
named Augustinus, and in the sense intended by the same Author, as
the Ap[...]-stolick[...] seat has, by the said Constitution
condemned them. And thus I sware. G[...]
so help me, and these holy Evangels [...]
This Bull was, April 29. 1665. (Sti[...] Novo) ratified by a Declaration of th[...] King of France, enjoyning the executio[...] of the same. But the Popes Nuncio imposing the said Bull on the Ecclesiastick[...] of France, without regard to the King[...] Autoritie, there issued forth, May 6[...] 1665. an Arrest of the Parliament [...] Paris, prohibiting the said Bull, &c. Whereupon the Arch-bishop of Paris, to comprimize the matter 'twixt the Pope [...]nd King, enjoyns the Signature of [...]he Formularie by his own Pow[...]r.
The Molinists are full of indignation [...]nd passionate Invectives against the Jansenists, and all that incline to them; whereof we have a sufficient instance in their severitie against one of their own Societie P. de la Croix, who testifying more affection for the Doctrine of S. Austin, than for that of Molina, was much persecuted by his Brethren the Jesuits; and notwithstanding his innocencie and candor of deportment, and his more than fortie years profession in their Societie, he was shut up in a cruel Prison at La Flesche, where he ended his dayes, none but God and themselves knows how.
The Jansenists, notwithstanding their great persecution, to this very day, have many and great friends amongst the more serious and sober of the Nobles, Clergy, and People of France. Many of the Bishops incline towards them, who (as I now hear) refuse to sign the Formularie for the condemnation of Jansenius.
Amongst the Regulars, som[...] whole Covents, yea whole Orders a[...] levened with Jansenisme; though thei[...] Zeal be not so warm as to quit thei[...] preferment for their Principles. Th[...] Peres de L' Oratoire, or Preaching Fri[...]ars are generally Jansenists, as it appears by their famous Theses of Efficacious Grace, which they dedicated [...] the General Assemblie of the Clergie [...] France, An. 1657. wherein they asse[...] that sufficient Grace does infallibly wa[...] its effect, whereas efficacious Grace do[...] infal[...]ibly produce it in every state. Th[...] Dominicans also symbolize very far, [...] not in every point, with the Jansenists (as has been before shewen) though they dare not profess any considerable favour or kindness towards them, but rathe[...] some of them, out of a spirit of faction, or Interest, fall in with the Molinists. Yea, not only in France, but also in Flanders, Jansenisme has taken very deep rooting, especially in the Universities of Louvain, and Doway, where the Jesuits are as much hated, as by their professed enemies the Jansenists. The Protestants generally have a great favour and kindness for the Jansenists. 'Tis not long since that Mr. Bochart (Pastor at Caen,) discoursing with an English Gentleman, about the down-fall of Antichrist, gave this as one reason of the approach thereof, viz. from the multiplying of the Jansenists, and the Orthodoxalitie of their Opinions, &c. And albeit the Jansenists hitherto have not dared to professe any great affection for or inclination towards those of the Reformed Religion; yet 'tis conceived they want it not, but rather opportunitie. Jansenists in his August. Tom. 3. de Grat. l. 8. c. 21. in answer to this Objection, that his Doctrine was Calvinistick, saith, All things that hereticks teach are not heretical. If Calvin agree with Austin and the ancient Fathers, in any point, we must not be angry with Austin for Calvins sake, but congratulate Calvin for Austins sake. I once also met with this expression in one of their Papers, where being accused of Calvinisme, they reply thus: If Calvin and Luther be in the right, let them be absolved, rather than that the Truth should be condemned. The great Crime the Jesuits accuse the Jansenists of, is their symbolizing with the Calvinists: Wherefore somewhile since the Molinists pictured the Jansenist with his arms open, embracing Calvin. The Jansenists to vindicate themselves from this Imputation, now and then write a book against the Calvinists.
Notwithstanding the Popes Bull, the Kings Declaration, and the Archbishop of Paris's Ordinance for the Signature of the Formularie, great numbers of the Ecclesiasticks of France, both Secular and Regular, have refused to subscribe the same. Yea there are four Bishops, who have, even till the end of the last Summer, 1668. dissented herefrom; and by the interposure of other Prelates, have brought the Pope to be satisfied, that they co[...]sent to the condemnation of the V Propositions formerly sentenced, without any mention of the Books of Jansenius: to which they have given their obedience, and accordingly subscribed. Hence (as I hear) the Jansenists by the Kings interposure, are again restored to their Dignities and preferments in the Sorbon, and else-where. The last news we hear of the Jansenists, is their consultations about setting up a Patriarch in France, which the Popes Nuncio complained of to the King, as that which would bring great Detriment to his Holines.
The Dogmatick Idea of Jansenisme.
The Principles of Jansenisme as laid down by Jansenius. 1. Efficacious Grace the first Principle of Jansenisme: of habitual and actual adjutorie. 2. The traduction of Original sin. 3. How far Invincible ignorance is sin. 4. Of sinfull Concupiscence, 1 Joh. 2. 16. 5. Of the nature of Fruition, and that God is its alone object. 6. Why love to the creature for it self is irregular. 7. The pestiferous effects of creature-love and fruition. 8. No free-will to good. 9. Indifference not essential to Liberty, neither does voluntary Necessitie exclude it. 10. The state of pure Nature, since the fall, is but a philosophick figment 11. Love to God in the state of Innocence both natural and supernatural· How love to God is a debt to huma[...] Nature, and yet of Grace. 12. Ther[...] is no natural Grace or Happines, b[...] what is supernatural. 13. How G[...] cannot but punish sin: Sin the greate[...] punishment of sin. 14. No Obligatio[...] on God to give Grace to such as improve Naturals. 15. The impotence [...] the Law as to salvation, and the irr[...]tation of sin thereby. 16. Of Medic[...]nal efficacious Grace, and its necessiti[...] 17. The nature of efficacious Grace i[...] Divine suavity. 18. There is no sufficient Grace but what is efficaciou[...] 19. How many wayes Gods Precept are usefull and possible, without sufficient Grace. 20. The Distributions [...] Efficacious Grace into preventing an[...] subsequent. 21. All Grace in love [...] God. 22. Of servile fear, its causes· &c. 23. Of Free-will, its nature, &c. 24. The mode of reconciling Free-wi[...] with Efficacious Grace. 25. Of Pre[...]destination, its act, object, motives, &c· 26. Of Reprobation, and against Vn[...]versal Grace. 27. Against Scholastick Theologie. 28. The Jansenists D[...]gmes of faith, touching the perfection of Scriptures, efficacious Grace, justification by faith, &c. 29. Their practical Theologie. 30. Their Principles as to Church Discipline: 1. That there is no humane infallible judge in matters of faith. 2. That Church[...]power is declarative only. 3. For liberty of Conscience, &c.
Having given some Historick account of Jansenisme, its Authors, Rise, and Progresse, together with sundry particularities, as to matter of fact: we now proceed to its Principles both Dogmatick and Practick; wherein we may be more affirmative and peremptory, than in former matters of fact. The Principles of Jansenisme (as of all Religi[...]n) have a threefold [...] or regard. 1. To Faith or Doctrine. 2. To Discipline and Worship. 3. To Morals, or Conversation. We shall begin with the first, namely the Principles of Jansenisme relating unto Faith; which though in themselves more speculative and national, yet have they a very soverein influence on practice.
These national principles of Jansenisme may be considered, as laid down by Jansenius, the Founder of this Sect, or as taken up by his Adhaerents. We shall first consider them, as they are to be found in Jansenius his Augustinus, which is made the source and measure of Jansenisme. And here we may not engage so deeply, as to extract a perfect Idea of all Jansenius's Doctrine; but shall content our selves to cull forth and collect such particular notions of his, as carrie in them some note of peculiaritie and remarque, whence the denomination of Jansenisme received its Original. And in this undertaking we shall follow Jansenius, [...], in his own words (translated) and method, as well as sense, so near as we may.
1. As [...],the first lie or Idol of Molinisme consists in the asserting of Free-will; so, [...], the first Truth of Jansenisme regards Efficacious Grace. This is the first great fundamental notion, which I have remarqued in Jansenius and his Adhaerents, who indeed are great Advancers of Efficacious Grace, but as great Abasers of Corrupt Nature; friends of Free Grace, but professed enemies of Free-will. So Jansenius (in his August. Tom. 2. fol. 60.) distinguisheth of a twofold Adjutorie, or Divine Assistance: the one he calls an Adjutorie sine quo non, without which we cannot act: the other he calls an Adjutorie quo, by which we act. The first he makes to be only habitual, preparatory and potential, whereby the Powers of the Soul are prepared, corroborated, and capacitated to act: the second he makes to be an actual, energetick or influential Adjutorie, whence followeth the application and determination of the power to act. The former potential habitual Adjutories he supposeth to be in the same rank, with the Power or Facultie, for whose corroboration and assistance they are given: for out of them and the power which they informe, there is constituted one intire complete operative facultie; whence the power cloathed with, or informed by these habitual Adjutories, receives the denomination of an actus primus, a first act, which gives not [...], Phil. 2. 13. the will, and the doe, but only a complete power of willing and doing. Amongst thes[...] dispositive potential Adjutories or Assistances he reckons all Habits or Powers· as Intelligible species or Ideas, and the light of Intelligence, commonly stile[...] intellectual Habits; as all moral Habits Dispositions, and Preparatory Graces, seated in the will. As for the adjutoriu[...] quo, the Adjutorie by which we act, o[...] actual Assistance, he proves, by invincible arguments, that both the Will, and the freeness of the will, as to whatever is morally good, depends immediately and wholly on the actual Adjutorie or concourse of Efficacious Grace. This he proves at large, in his Tom. 3. lib. 1. c. 2, 3. but especially, cap. 4. fol. 6. where he gives this Demonstrative reason from the cause, why no M[...]tion or Act of the Will can be Morally good, without the Adjutorie of Efficacious Grace:
The true root (sayes he) why no work morally good, can be done without Grace freeing or uncaptivating the will, is this: That which by the bondage of Concupiscence is taken from good works, is not some supernaturalitie of the work, or the Reason of merit, but it is the very formal Reason, by which a good work is constituted such; so that upon the defect thereof sin ipso facto followeth. For the Pondus or weight of Concupiscence, with which the soul is possessed, wrests it from the love of justice and rectitude, which is necessarily and essentially required in every good work, and fastens it to some Creature. But of this more hereafter.
2. Another great Principle, on which Jansenius does largely discourse in order to the subversion of Molinisme, is touching the Traduction or propagation of Original sin, &c. So Jansen. August. Tom. 2. lib. 1. cap. 6. fol. 86.
I find it, sayes he, to be the undubitable opinion of Austin, That Original sin is no otherwise propagated, from the first man to Posteritie, but by the lust or Concupiscence of the flesh; that by the magnitude of that sin all humane nature should be vitiated. For by this it comes to pass, that this Concupiscential Law, or evil of Nature, being propagated, also Original sin should be propagated.
Jansenius proceeds, from his Discourse of Original Sin in general, to the particular branches thereof; and begins with the Depravation of the Vnderstanding. So in his Tom. 2. lib. 2. cap. 5, 6. fol. 128. Where that which deserves special remarque is, that he proves, against the common persuasion of the Scholes, that invincible ignorance of what is our duty is both sinful and punishable. His words are these,
Invincible ignorance, which flows from necessitie, not from the will, is not without sin.
Hence Jansenius passeth on to the corruption of the Will and Affections; which he discourseth of under the notion of Concupiscence. So Tom. 2. lib. 2. cap. 7. fol. 130.
Concupiscence (saies he) which Tullie calls Lust, and the Platonists Pleasure, or delectation, is nothing else than an habitual pondus or weight, by which the soul is inclined and bent to the fruition of the creatures. For whether this concupiscence be the very sensitive Appetite and Will, as destitute of Grace, and, by their own gravitie and weight, prone to the appetition of things created, as many will have it; or whether it be somewhat superadded to these powers, as Austin rather inclines; (whether one or t'other) its still like an inveterate custome, pertinaciously propelling to the fruition of Pleasures:
Jansenius having discoursed at large [...] the Adherence of the Will to the creature which he calls Concupiscence, he come[...] to treat of the Wills Adhesion to God, under the Notion of Fruition. So Tom. 2· lib. 2. cap. 16. fol. 150· &c.
Man[...] (saies he) love those things they know not they love; but this their love is discovered by fruition: for love without fruition cannot be understood; as neither fruition without love: seeing love is the [...]eginning of fruition; & fruition the end of love; for none injoys any thing but what he loves; and none loves any thing but what he would fain injoy. Whence it comes to passe, that as there is no Fruition, but what is seasoned with love, so there is no love, but what tends to frution. Therefore love, saies Austin, is nothing else, but the will desiring or tending to the fruition of somewhat---For love, as a hidden fountain, precedeth fruition; and fruition as an open stream or lake wherein love is drowned, is more manifest than Love: Wherefore there is the greatest vicinitie betwixt fruition and love; so that Austin, explicating the reason of fruition, saies, that to injoy any thing, is by love to adhere unto it, for it self. For if we do not adhere unto the thing for it self, we do not properly love it, but that other thing, for which we adhere to it. Fruition properly is not love, but the fruit, effect, and end thereof. For love when its object is absent, breaks forth into desire; and when present and possessed, into fruition and joy; which is the center that terminates its motion. These things being thus explicated; it evidently follows, (adds he) according to Austin, that a rational creature may injoy nothing but God only. For we injoy only that which we love for it self; wherein our objective happiness consists---From this immobile principle it follows. 1. That all use of the creature, which is not referred unto God, is sin. 2. That all fruition of the creature, no lesse than the love thereof, is sin. 3. That to use God for the obtaining the creature· is sin: which perversitie is found in all sin; whilest we would injoy things t[...] be used, and use things to be injoyed. Whence sprang that rule of Austin, that all human perversion is, when men would enjoy things to be used, and use thing[...] to be enjoyed: And again, all ordination and virtue, is to injoy things to be injoyed, and to use things to be used.
This the Spirit of God most savingly indicates unto us, that there is no true[...] self-love than that, whereby we love God with all the heart: and because the most refined and noble love of God, consists in a mans being abstracted from the reflexion, and consideration of himself, it thence followeth, that by how much the more a man forgets himself, by so much the more noble and exact regard he has unto himself.
Hence Jansenius (Tom. 2. lib. 2. c. 19. [...]l. 156.) gives us a demonstration from because, why it is unlawful, for a creature [...] terminate on himself or on the crea[...]ure, as the ultimate object of his love. Be[...]ause this is the natural condition of a rati[...]nal creature, to be placed under God, but [...]bove all corporeous Beings. Now this order [...] preserved by regular Loves and Weights. [...]or a weight, according to Austin, is the [...]mpetus or Bent of every thing towards its [...]roper place. And the weight of a rati[...]nal creature is his love, which is the [...]dea, and measure of corporeous weights. This Pondus or weight of love, is infused into a rational creature, for the preservation of natural order; that so he may be subject to God, but Lord of all inferior things. For such is the nature of love, that it subjugates the person loving to the thing beloved. What we love we serve, and are inferior unto: whence it follows that the Lover is affected with [...] the perturbations of the thing be love[...] Seeing therefore God, the first Truth a[...] chiefest Good, is alone superior to the r[...]tional creature, to him alone we oug[...] to su[...]ject our selves, by the weight [...] love: which when we do, we act ra[...]onally and virtuously: for virtue, whi[...] implies the best state of a rational cre[...]ture, is nothing else but the order of lo[...] whereby, as by a weight, the soul kee[...] it self below that which is most supre[...] and above that which is below it, in [...] middle state, according to the obligati[...] and appointment of the eternal La[...] Hence the root of all sin is an inordin[...] adherence to the creature, &c.
Thence Jansenius proceeds to demonstrate the pestiferous effects of inordin[...] love, which terminates on the creature So Tom. 2. lib. 2. cap. 20. fol. 159. Th[...] first effect (saies he) which the love [...] the creature produceth in the soul, [...] amission of libertie. Whence also follows incapacitie of judgement. 2. Another effect of this inordinate love to th[...] creature, is, that it transformes us into th[...] [...]enesse of those things we love. For all [...]ve tends to unitie, so far as 'tis possi[...]e; and albeit it comes short thereof, [...] it leaves a likenesse. For all likenesse [...] but a defective Vnity: So that by the [...]rce of love, a man that loves the flesh, is [...]ereby made fl[...]sh[...]y. 3. Hence follows ano[...]er effect of creature love; the alligation or [...]inding the heart to the things beloved. This at first is insensible, but yet by fre[...]uent acts, this inordinate love increas[...]th; so that at last, from delight there [...]riseth custome; and from custome necessi[...]ie. 4. Whence also follows a difficultie of rending the heart from, and grief in parting with beloveds. 5. Hence likewise results instabilitie and inquietude of soul. 6. Whence also proceeds defilement of soul: for love is a kind of touch, yea, 'tis an intimate ingr[...]sse, or entering into the thing beloved; which, if it be more ignoble than the lover, does blemish and contaminate its dignity. This Impuritie clouds and darkens the mind, obstructing its s[...]renitie of judgement. 7. Lastly, From this hebetude of mind, and alligation to creatures, proceeds a perverse use of things; which is another pestiferous effect of creature love. For we can ne[...] use things well, till we have spirits [...] obliged from them: a mind chained the creature by inordinate love, [...] but abuse it. Whence he conclud[...] fol. 162. That all things must be refer[...] unto God, not only in the habitual co[...]tution of the soul, but also in actual, or least virtual intention thereof.
These things being premised touchi[...] inordinate and ordinate love or fruiti[...] Jansenius proceeds to prove that [...] Will cannot be the Parent of any w[...] spiritualy or morally good. So Tom. 2. [...] 3. cap. 14.
We judge, saith he, [...] opinion of Austin, and his Disciples [...] indubitable. 1. That no good wo[...] no not morally such, can be perfor[...] by Free Will, unlesse it be freed by [...]wird[...] and that not of every kind, but of fai[...] 2. That the Libertie of abstaining fr[...] sin is lost, and a necessitie of sinni[...] even in every act, introduced: beca[...] whatever is not of [...]aith, is sin. T[...] he farther demonstrates, Cap. 17. fol. 2[...] Because, according to the principle [...] Austin, there can be no Work [...] good, but what is referred unto God, for himself.
Jansenius having demonstrated the Impossibilitie of Free Will to good, with the necessitie of sinning in lapsed nature, he goes on to remove that common Pelagian objection, viz. that this necessitie of sin destroyes human Libertie. For the full solution hereof, he gives us an exact Idea of the Libertie of the Will, and its combination with some necessitie. Thus Tom. 2. lib. 4. cap. 24. Where he proves at large, That Libertie includes not, in its formal reason or nature, Indifference to good and evil. He shewes, that this false Idea of Libertie was taken up by the Pelagians, from the institution of Gentile Philosophers, who fancying nothing more as requisite to good, but the meer office, or naked matter, asserted an Indifference to good and evil in all; wherein they placed Libertie, as the Pelagians and Scholemen after them. But that Indifference to good and evil is not essential or necessary to Libertie, Jansenius proves, 1. From the Devils, who are determined to evil, yet freely. 2. From the good Angels, who are determined to good, yet freely. 3. From the cognation 'twixt Libertie and Voluntarinesse: For as an act of the Will may be voluntary so also free, though immobile and necessarily determined; and that according to the confession of the Scholes, which grant that a desultori us mobilitie, or mutabilitie of will, is not of the ess[...]nce of Libertie, but its imperfection. He farther proves, that Libertie is the same with voluntarines; yea, the same with the will it self, which ceaseth not to be most free, when 'tis most fixed and necessary. Yea, this firmitie and necessitie, which ariseth from the wills own natural vehemence, or voluntary tendence is so far from prejudicing its Libertie, as that it does greatly corroborate[...] and confirme the same. He tells us also, that these false [...]dea's of human libertie were derived from Aristotle, who measured every thing by his own reason· Whereas others of the Ancients had mor[...] Orthodoxe notions of human libertie making it the same with rational spontaneitie, or voluntarines, &c. of these things Jansenius discourseth at large, in what follows, chap. 25. also in his Tom. 3[...] lib. 6. cap. 3. 5. 10, 25, 35, 37, &c.
The Molinists to maintain their [...], or great Diana of free will, invented a middle state which they call [...] state of pure Nature, without sin or Grace. This Jansenius greatly opposeth, as tha[...] which was greatly derog[...]tory to the Wisdome and Grace of God. So in his Tom. 2. [...] spends two or three whole Books in disproving this state of pure Nature. 1. H[...] tells us, that such a state of pure Nature was altogether unknown to Austin· and the Primitive Church: it having been obtruded upon us by the Gentile Philosophers, and Christian Hereticks the Pelagians, &c. so fol. 278. Then he passeth (l. 1. c. 1. fol. 279.) to what the latter Scholemen mean by this their state of pure nature, viz. a Negative Puritie, wherein they suppose a man to be created without Sin, or, Grace: I presume the same with Aristotles rasa tabula, which he likened the soul unto. Now that there cannot be such a state of pure nature, Jansenius proves, 1. From the order or regard a rational creature has unto God, as his first princ[...]ple and last end or good: For saies he,
'tis impossible that a rational creature should be produced by God in a connatural manner, without some regard to his last and most connatural end. So cap. 3. fol. 282. For, the reason of Divine Providence, and the connatural order of things require, that as things proceed from a first principle, so they tend to some last end. Yea, this flows from the very Institution of Human Nature, and is founded in its very Essence, that it adhere to God, as its supreme principle and last end. Which not to do is sin. 2. Seeing a rational creature cannot be made without a will regularly inclined to God as Creator, hence followeth a necessitie of Grace, to inspire this will, whereby the possibilitie of a state of pure nature is overturned, &c. 3. All love terminates either on the creature, and so 'tis concupiscence, or on God, and so 'tis Divine Charitie, or love, &c.
Hence Jansenius proceeds to demonstrate, That Love to God was in the state of Innocence a gift naturally due to humane Nature, and yet of Grace given to it. So Tom. 2. de Pur. Nat. l. 1. c. 15.
If (saies he) a rational creature cannot be created without love to God, then hence occurs a weighty difficultie, whether this love may be stiled natural, or supernatural: a debt or Grace. To which he replies thus: It seems to me that both may be affirmed without a contradiction. That this love is supernatural, is beyond controversie amongst all Catholicks; for, as eternal blisse, so the Love of God, which is the way thereto, is in like manner supernatural: for though one and t'other be the action of a creature, yet neither flows from the principles of nature, or natural faculties and force. This love to God may be called also natural, not only as consentaneous unto Nature; but 1. On the part o[...] reason: as the natural light of reason dictates, that God is to be beloved above all, and that by the most natural, strict and universal obligation, than which nothing is more moral, essential, and eternally obliging to human Nature, &c. 2. This love of God may be said to be natural, in regard of the will, as God is the most natural end of its choice, according to that of Scotus, God is the natural end of man, although not to be obtained naturally.
1. That God is to be loved by his creature in every state. 2. That this love, although it be consentaneous to human nature, yet it is the effect of supernatural Grace. 3. Hence (saies he) it is most safe to affirme, that a rational creature considered without any fore-going sin, cannot be created without love to God; at least without a sufficient facultie, by which he may be inabled to cleave unto God, as his Creator: for otherwise the will should be void of [...]s natural rectitude, and so sinful, &c. Which to impute to God, is a note of blasphemie, whereby he is made the Author of sin. Thence Jansenius proceeds cap. 20. fol. 320. to shew how this love to God, though a debt due to human Nature, proceeds notwithstanding from Grace. 1. There are, saies he, certain debts or decent connaturalities, congruencies, and equities, which spring not from the right of the creature, but from the Grace of God. For God is oft said to be a debtor to himself, his own attributes, not only to his Justice, but also to his Wisdom and Goodnesse, &c. 2. Again, the very nature of a Rational creature, is the gratuitous and free gift of God; so in like manner the rectitude of the same nature, which though inseparable, yet it ariseth not from any merit of the creature, but from such arguments or reasons as concerne the attributes of God, his Wisdom and Goodnes.
From the foresaid hypothesis, that there is no such thing as a state of pure Nature, Jansenius rationally concludes against, and rejects that usual distinction amongst the Scholemen of virtue and beatitude, into natural and supernatural, &c. So Tom. 2. de Nat. Pura lib. 2. cap. 2. fol. 326. Where he tells us,
That he has oft wondred how it came to pass, that the ancient Philosophers, Socrates, Plato, &c. discoursed more accurately, and truly of the lapsed state of man, than the late Scholemen? Neither addes he, can I find any other reason hereof than this, that the late Scholemen have all followed the pur-blind reasonings of Aristotle; who being ignorant of his own imbecillitie, and not sensible of any supernatural adjutorie, taught men to expect all good from their own virtue, &c. Hence the Pelagians sucked all their poison: which the Scholemen endeavoring to moderate and allay, have framed two men in one, a Philosopher, and a Christian: Whence, what ever they find in the Philosopher, touching free will or natural virtue they apply to their Philosopher; and whatever they find in Scripture, touching Grace, they refer to their Christian. Thus they frame a double virtue and happinesse, one natural, another supernatural. So again, Jansen. Tom. 2. lib. 4. de Grat. Christi, cap. 16. fol. 255. The Scholemen, saies he, finding the Pelagian Infusions touching seeds of virtue, repugnant to the Catholick Doctrine, they frame a double man in a single, and so double charitie, double virtues, double works; the one natural, the other supernatural; whereof there is not the least foot-steps in Austin, who termes the Philosophers and Scholemens natural virtues but splendid sins. So Tom. 2. de pur. Nat. lib. 2. c. 5. fol. 332. The Scholemen, saies Jansenius, confes, that man cannot be in a connatural mode created, but for some last end: hence they are forced to coin a twofold beatitude, one natural, t'other supernatural, &c. Then he concludes cap. 8. That as this state of pure Nature derived its original from the error of Gentile Philosophie; so likewise this imagination of natural happines, &c. In brief, he demonstrates clearly, that these common notions, so frequent in the Scholes, touching natural and moral virtues and happines, as distinct from spiritual or supernatural, are but a meer chimera, or figment, hatcht first in the Gentile Scholes, and thence derived by the Pelagians and Scholemen into the Christian Scholes, with no small prejudice to the Christian Faith.
Hence Jansenius proceeds to prove, that there is a kind of necessitie on God, for the punishing of sin. So Tom. 2. de Pura Nat. lib. 3. cap. 2.
That God, saies he, can permit sin, whereby his order is disturbed, to go unpunished, Austin every where rejects, as a Paradoxe irreconcileable with Divine Justice. And this necessitie of punishing sin results not hence, that God has thus by his peculiar will constituted, but from the very sanction of the Eternal Law, against which God cannot act, any more than against himself, seeing it is nothing else, but Gods eternal Reason and Will. Then he proceeds cap. 3, 4. to shew, what those punishments are, which are so inseparably and indispensably fastened to sin, viz. 1. Horror of Conscience, which is oft more intolerable than death it self. And if there be at any time securitie on sinners, yet this ariseth not from any health of conscience, but from its s[...]upor. Now by how much the more stupid conscience is, by so much the more uncurable 'tis: as in the bodie, so in conscience, stupidnes is a disease worse than the most torturing dolors or pains. 2. Another inseparable punishment of sin, is a perpetual inquietude. 3. But another more weightie and intimate punishment of sin, is the losse of the chiefest good. For although no one sins but with his will, yet no one parts with his chiefest good, but against his will. 4. This is followed with another punishment, which is adherence to the creature, and by how much the more pleasingly and securely the sinner enjoyes the creature, by so much the more 'tis fastned to it, and therefore by so much the more miserable. 5. Sin is an unseparable punishment of it self. For though sin precisely as voluntarie, is not a punishment but offence, yet as it is the offence of a rational creature, so it is an evil, which none would voluntarily partake of: For none chooseth pure sin. The greatest punishment of sin, saies Seneca is in it self: it is no sooner committed but punished by its very act.
Jansenius, the more effectually to undermine the Jesuits great Idol of Free Will, proves Tom. 3. de Grat. Christi, lib. 1. c. 5. fol. 7.
That God is not bound by any stable Law, to give Grace to him that does what he can by the force of nature to improve the abilities he has. For (saies he) there is no Law or Ordination of God: by which Grace is conferred on sinners that do nothing of good: but this is dispensed, not only altogether freely, but also according to the most profound Laws of Divine Gubernation; whereby Grace is sometimes imparted to the most hainous sinners, and denied to others more righteous. Whence the question is resolved into this, Whether Grace be infallibly given to those who are less sinful. That Grace is not thus dispensed, is evident, in children, who without peradventure are lesse sinful than persons adult, and yet frequently excluded from having any share in Divine Grace. The like as to persons adult. And indeed this Law obliging God to dispense forth Grace, according to mens improvement of Naturals, is but a vain Comment found out by such, who being not able to bear the inscrutable profunditie and liber[...]ie of imparting Grace, were willing to frame certain chains, whereby Nature and Grace should be knit together, that so condemned Nature might as it were by certain scales or degrees passe from one to the other. Thus Jansenius.
Hence Jansenius undertakes to prove the Impotence of the Law as to salvation, and its prevalence as to the irritation of sin. So Tom. 3. de Grat. lib. 1. cap. 8.
The knowledge of the Law, (saies he) although it removes the ignorance of our dutie, yet it leaves concupiscence more difficult to be overcome, more flourishing and strong than before. And whoever imagineth, that the Law was given to the Jews immediately for this end, that so they might by institution thereof be brought to a more facilitie of righteousnes is greatly deceived. For lust being repressed, is increased; and being like to be deprived of its lusted good, it burnes more strongly for the injoyment of it. Yea, the Law is so far from lessening sin, as that it aggravates the same, and shuts up the sinner under a more severe condemnation. 1. In that he now sins against more light, &c. 2. In that, if the sinner be brought to any partial or imperfect conformitie to the precepts of the Law, he presently is puffed up with pride, carnal confidence, and self-sufficience which is the worst of sins.
Jansenius having demonstrated the Impotence of the Law, in combination with Free will, to confer Grace, he thence proceeds to prove the Necessitie and efficacie of Christs medicinal Grace, &c. So Tom. 3. de Grat. lib. 2. cap. 22.
The genuine nature (saies he) of medicinal Grace consists herein, that it give not only an habitual or potential capacitie, but also an actual Adjutorie, or Assistance, whereby the will may be determined (hic & nunc) immediately unto good. Then cap. 24. he proves more largely, That this medicinal Grace is Vorticordious or most potent. 1. In that it does, by an ineffable suavitie, mixed with power, effectually overcome the heart. 2. In that God is the alone supreme Agent in this work. 3. In that this Medicinal Grace is such, as that its effect depends not on the will, but the will is by it determined:
Jansenius having made some entrance on the explication and demonstration of Efficacious Grace, he asserts and proves, Tom. 3. de Grat. lib. 3. cap. 1, 2, 3.
That men in their lapsed state are afforded no sufficient Grace, but what is also efficacious. For, saies he, this Adjutorie purely sufficient belongs to the Grace of Nature, and is altogether unuseful for the reparation of persons lapsed, although it should be augmented to six hundred degrees of sufficience: Yea, it cannot be asserted, since the fall, unless with a greater delusion than that of the Pelagians, taking away origina[...] sin, we will allow unto Nature unwounded force. Yea, what can be produced more monstrous, than such a kind of Adjutorie, distinct from all the rest, which was never from the beginning of the fall, nor shall be to the day of judgement, conferred on the human will. So cap. 5.---11. he proves, That the Law was given to the Jews, and to many Christians, without any such sufficient or adjuvant Grace. And unbelievers want this sufficient Grace as well the next as more remote, and all the principles thereof, &c.
Hence Jansenius passeth on to shew, how many waies the precepts of God may be said to be possible, without asserting such a sufficient Grace: So Tom. 3. de Grat. lib. 3. cap. 15, &c.
That the Possibilitie of Gods commands, on which the Libertie of Will, and the Reason of sin depends, may be more fully explicated, it must be observed, how many wayes a man may be said to be able, &c. 1. Most remotely, by the flexibilitie of human libertie. 2. Somewhat more nearly, by faith and love. 3. But most compleatly by the Assistance of actual Grace. This complete power, which actual Grace gives, is alwaies joined, and that inseparably, with an actual will. Thus therefore the precepts of God are possible, 1. To the just by faith and love. 2. To unbelievers, by virtue of the flexibilitie of natural libertie, neither does the suspension of actual Grace at all excuse their moral impotence, of observing the Precepts; because this impotence is not antecedent but consequent and voluntary, arising from the perverse disposition of the will, which, by how much the more fixed 'tis; by so much the more inexcusable 'tis, so far is it from excusing sin. Then cap. 17. Jansenius proves, that these Divine Precepts are very useful, (though impossible to be kept) by unbelievers, without the vain figment of sufficient Grace, and that 1. To discover mens dutie. 2. To discover their infirmitie. 3. To render them inexcusable. 4. As a medium of judicial hardnes. 5. But especially as to the Elect, these Precepts and Exhortations are useful: 1. To teach them [...] infirmitie, their blindnes and hardnes [...] heart, &c. 2. To make them of [...] misse and humble spirits, willing to [...] saved in Gods way, and on termes [...] free Grace. God commands a du[...] beyond our strength, thereby to dri[...] us out of our selves to Christ. 3. To[...]gether with the Word of Precept, [...] gives out a word of Power, &c.
Jansenius having discoursed of [...] Nature and Necessitie of Efficacious Gra[...] he proceeds to treat of the several kin[...] thereof. Thus Tom. 3. lib. 4. de Gr[...] cap. 12. to the 19th, where having give[...] the sentiments of Suarez, and Vasque[...] and their defects herein, he laies do[...] a division of his own conformable [...] the mind of Austin, and so distribut[...] Grace, 1. Into Praevenient and subseque[...]
Which names (saies he) are respe[...]ctive; whose terme is not Grace, ([...] though one Grace did precede th[...] other) but the acts of the Will. Fo[...] Grace is said to be praevenient, becaus[...] it prevents every good motion of th[...] will;
Jansenius having finisht his Discourse [...] Medicinal Efficacious Grace, he pro[...]eeds to the effect thereof, namely to [...]irtue, which he makes to consist, radi[...]ally and principally in Love to God. So [...]om. 3. de Grat. lib. 5. cap. 3, &c.
Austin (saies he) teacheth us, that the virtue of a Rational creature, is no other than love to God. Which Doctrine indeed seems very exotick to the Sectators of Aristotles Morals; but yet, if it be duely weighed, it will be found to be most true. For mans chiefest goo[...] and virtue consists in adhering to God· which is done by love. Virtue is nothing else but a rectified will. Henc[...] he proves, that all the Cardinal Virtue[...] Prudence, Temper[...]ce, Justice, Fortitude; yea, those which they terme supernatural, as Faith and Hope, have [...] their original from Love to God. Hen[...] also he proves, cap. 9. 10. That love [...] concupiscence which refers all to self, [...] respect of God, is vitious: yet 'tis not repugnant to love to God, to have an e[...] on the reward: for love to God for himself is the only reward of our love to God,
Hence Jansenius passeth on to treat of the fear of Hell, its causes, properties, and effects. So Tom. 3. de Grat, lib. 5. cap. 21. &c. where he shews, that the fear of Hell, considered in its self, is lawfull and profitable; because it is an avoiding of evil, yea, it may be subordinate to our last end: And whereas some stick or acquiesce in this fear, as [...] the term or center; this is the fault [...] him that fears, not of the fear. He [...]en distinguisheth 'twixt ordinate and [...]ordinate fear of Hell:
Ordinate is that whereby the fault is more feared than the punishment; inordinate, when the punishment is feared more than the fault; which some call servile fear. Thence he leads us to the Spring-head of this fear of Hell, shewing, how it springs not from a spirit of Adoption, which inspires coelestial suavities into the heart; but from the spirit of bondage, or a certain general Grace of of God. Yet addes he, this fear of Hell is attributed to the Grace of God, because 1. It proceeds from a Legal faith of Gods Eternal Judgement, which is a gift of God. 2. God followes this apprehension of future Judgement with comminations, threats, and commotions of Conscience, &c. 3. God works this fear by softening the heart; and that either by the immission of temporal tribulations, or by the ablation of carnal delights, which harden Conscience.
Jansenius having discoursed at large of medicinal Grace, its nature, and effects, he returns again to the main hindge or head of the Controversie, to discourse more fully of Free-will, its nature, &c. Thus Tom. 3. de Grat. lib. 6. cap. 1. &c. fol. 255. where he begins with this sad Lamentation:
There is deserved and great matter of grief, that some are so given to human, and for the most part fallacious r[...]tiocinations, as that they suppose it more meet to draw the intelligence of free-will from Aristotle, and the Gentile Philosophie, than from the bosom of the ancient Church: namely, because this matter exceeds not the bounds of natural reason, therefore (as they conceit) it must be measured by reason. Neither indeed is the Pelagian haeresie concerning Grace and Free-will any other than pure Aristotelick Philosophie.
Hence Jansenius Tom. 3. de Grat. lib. 8. cap. 6. unto 21. is engaged in that intricate difficultie of reconciling efficacious Grace with human Libertie,
The mode (sayes he, cap. 6.) of conciliating Divine Grace with free-will is so difficult to be discerned, according to Austin, that when the libertie of the will is defended, the Grace of God seems to be denied; and when the Grace of God is asserted, the libertie of the will may be thought to be taken away. Hence Austin, to manifest, that the libertie of the will continues safe under Grace, and that both might very well conspire together in one, he never attempted any thing against the Pelagians, which excluded the will from an instrumental concurrence with the Grace of God, &c.
very thing John Scotus does professedly teach,
whilest he clearly delivers, That a
necessitie of willing, is consistent with the libertie of willing; because
saies he, the will, by reason of the firmitie of its Libertie, does
impose a necessitie on it self, both in exerting its act, as also in persevering
or fixing it [...]elf
in act. Hence he farther declareth, that the will
alwaies keeps its mode of acting freely, and it is impossible that
this mode of acting freely, should be by any power whatsoever, taken
from her. [...]hus Jansenius
who cap. 18. addes farther thus,
The Catholicks say, that by the Grace of God working in us every good work is done, yet that we are not compelled against our will to believe or that Grace is violent; because if the will be compelled or forced it does not will. And they adde the reason, because God by Grace does not destroy reason and will, but enables men to will aright.
It cannot be (saies Jansenius) but that the will must be free, therefore if Grace enables and makes us to will, it enables and makes us also to will freely, so that there can be no repugnance 'twixt Grace and the libertie of the will---Therefore no necessitie, no [...]fficacie on the acts of the will, is to be feared but only force, coaction, and violent necessitie.
That this his concord of the wills libertie with efficacious Grace differed not from the opinion of Calvin, &c.
Jansenius having discoursed most [...]argely of the Doctrine of Efficacious Grace, he at last determines or centers [...]n the root, head or spring of all, viz. in Predestination. So in his Tom. 3. lib. 9. de Grat. cap. 1, &c. Where he begins in [...]his Preface thus.
The dispute of Predestination is so intimately conjoined to that of Grace, that the nature of the one cannot be exactly known, without the knowledge of the other. Whence it comes to passe, that look into how many parts the neoterick Scholes are diltracted, about the operation of Grace, so many dissensions in opinion have they also about Predestination: every partie contending in their manner, according as the Grace they defend requires. But the principal difficulties in this matter have had their rise from the too great contention of Philosophick ratiocinations, &c.
That to predestinate properly signifies to praedecree, praedefine, praedetermine somewhat. Thus the Greek [...] signifies, as Rom. 8. 29. Ephes. 1. 5, 11. And because every Praedefinition of God must necessarily, eternally precede its temporal effects, hence instead of [...] sometimes the simple [...] is used, as Rom. 1. 4. Luke 22. 22. Acts 2. 23. Acts 17. 26, 31. Acts 10. 42. In all which places [...] signifies the same with [...]; whence [...] is sometimes rendred simply to decree; because to decree with God is the same with to praedecree. Hence (cap. 2. fol. 366 he concludes, That from this principle 'tis no way difficult to resolve many Scholastick Questions. For hence 'tis manifest, 1. That the object of Predestination is not things eternal, but temporal. 2. That Gods Predestination regards his own affairs: things to be done by him, not meerly by others. For we decree things we are to do, either by working, commanding or persuading, &c. 3. That Gods Decrees regard both end and means: for they include all God does. 4. Hence also it comes to passe, that children may be predestinated to glory without previous faith, as well as persons adult by ordinate merits: for there is no difference in the Decree. 5. That Predestination regards not only Good, but also Evil, &c.
which, saies he, is expressed in Scripture by many aequipollent names: for sometimes 'tis called Dilection; because God by it wills nothing but good to his creature. Sometimes 'tis termed Election; because he chooseth one and refuseth another: sometimes 'tis stiled Purpose; because it is not a sterile dilection, but an efficacious decree of conferring some benefit. Lastly, 'Tis called a preparation; because the Decrees of God are as it were pregnant, or bigge with child, till they break forth into operation.
Hence Jansenius proceeds to discourse of Reprobation, which he makes to be (according to Austin) Gods leaving men under their original damnation, &c. So Tom. 3. de Grat. lib. 10. cap. 2. &c. Where explicating the distinction given by Moderne Divines of Reprobation into Negative and Positive, he concludes the nullitie of this distinction, by shewing how negative Reprobation includes also positive. The like he farther inculcates, cap. 3.
But according to Austin (addes he) there is no negative Reprobation to be allowed, because in every signe or moment of Divine account, it ever has adjoined to it (by reason of the object or person on which both falls) positive Reprobation. Then having discoursed at large of the Acts and Effects of this positive absolute Reprobation (cap. 5. 9. 13. &c.) he concludes, with an Apologie for God his sovereintie, and just procedure herein, (cap. 17.) It may not (saies he) seem a wonder to any, that God should create, conserve, and governe such a number of Reprobates without any purpose of saving them. For they serve for that purpose to which they are meet, and very necessary in this state of matters: namely, that in them the severitie and justice of Divine Vengeance against sin, as also the magnitude of mercie towards the Elect might be shown forth. For they who have coined that exotick kind of Predestination, wherein God is exposed and brought in, as ready to pour out his Graces indifferently unto all, that he who will may free himself; whilest they seem to lay open the bowels of Election towards all, they do wholly evacuate the whole of Gods love towards the Elect, which is so greatly applauded in the Scriptures, and S. Austin, &c.
Hence Jansenius (as also his Comrade St. Cyran) entertained a deep displeasure against that abstruse, cloudy, and wrangling kind of Theologie brought in by the Scholemen, in imitation of Aristotle, &c. So Jansen. Tom. 2. de Nat. pur. lib. 2. c. 2. fol. 326. Where he shewes, how the Scholemen suckt in from Aristotle, their notions of a state of pure Nature, Free will, &c. Thus they joined Aristotle with Christ, and his Philosophie with the Scripture, as Dagon with the Ark. So again Tom. 2. lib. proaem. cap. 28. he saies, that the
Scholemen being drunken with the love of too much Philosophie, would fain digge forth, penetrate, forme, and judge of the hidden Mysteries of Grace, according to the rules of reason. Hence that ardor of questioning and disputing every thing. Hence their Theologie became stuffed with an heap of innumerable opinions, by which all things, though never so contrary, are made probable: whence a general [...], or Scepticisme: for nothing is more natural, than of Peripateticks men should become Academicks, &c.
We now proceed to discourse a little of Jansenisme, as taken up and maintained by the Sectators of Jansenius, who in the general touching their sense of Jansenius, refer us to the first and third Disquisition of Paul Ireneus, as also to the first and fourth part of Denis Raymond, Wherein (say they) the Jansenists have declared exactly what they understand by the sense of Jansenius: Moreover how far they symbolize with, and are willing to conforme unto, the expressions of the Thomists has been before in the historick narrative sufficiently mentioned. But to give some particular Dogmes of the Jansenists as to faith.
1. They generally (following Jansenius and St. Cyran herein) begin to have a good esteem of the Sacred Scriptures: and to vindicate much their perfection as the only rule of faith: I met with this expression in one of their Papers, viz. That it is an heresie to judge of heresies without the Word of God. This farther appears by their late Translation of the Scriptures.
2. As for Jansenius's Doctrine touching efficacious Grace, they reduce it to this Proposition maintained by all the Thomists, viz. That all the Grace of Christ is efficaciously productive of some effect to which it is nextly ordained, and which God by an absolute will, intends. So Refutation du P. Ferrier c. 4.
3. Hence they allow not any Grace to be sufficient, but what is also efficacious. So Refutat. du P. Ferrier, c. 11. pag. 64.
Because (say they) this word Grace sufficient is not to be found, either in the Scripture, or in the Councils, or in the Fathers, &c. therefore no Jesuit has right to oblige us to make use of it farther than we please.
4. The Jansenists (as Jansenius and St. Cyran their heads) seem good friends to Justification by Free Grace, and Faith in the blood of Christ, without any regard to human merits as abused in the Popish sense. 'Tis true they make use of the name merit, but in no other sense than it was used by Austin, without any approbation of the thing, as the ground of Justification. This is manifest not only from their Books, but also by their Practice. It was the usual method of Jansenius, for the comforting of afflicted consciences, to send them to the blood of Christ alone: and Mr. St Cyran seems mighty warme and pressing on this point. The like instances I have had touching others of this persuasion in France, who being to deal with dying persons, insisted much upon pressing them to have recourse to the blood of Christ.
Neither indeed are the Jansenists verst only in speculative and notional, but also in practick and active Theologie; especially the chief of them Jansenius and St. Cyran seem to have had a very deep, broad, spiritual light and insight into the Mysteries of the Gospel, and true Godlines; and I am apt to persuade my self, they had some feeling apprehensions and inward acquaintance with those choice Gospel truths, they commend to others. They talk much of studying the Scriptures, and acquainting our selves with the mind and Spirit of God therein; they presse, with some affectionate importunitie, to the renouncing our own righteousnesse, strength, wisdom, wills, &c. They greatly commend to us spiritual povertie, soul-humilitie, heart-mortification, self-emptinesse, and abjection, &c. These things they insist upon, not according to the Monkish mode of external mortification, but in a Gospel strain, with so much meeknesse of wisdom, and yet with so much spiritual passion and warmth, as if their words were but sparks, or ideas of that Divine fire which burned in their hearts. This I have particularly observed in Mr. St. Cyrans Epistles, in reading whereof, and comparing his expressions with the Character and Idea I have of his Spirit, and life, I must confesse I have been much recreated. But thus much of their Doctrine.
The Jansenists begin also to have very moderate and favorable persuasions about Church Discipline; as it appears by these particulars.
1. They are come now generally to disavow, not only the Popes, but all human Infallibilitie. This is one of the last refuges they have made use of against their adversaries, as it appears by a Paper of theirs lately publisht, titled, Abregé d'un Traicté intitulé l'Illusion Theologique. The summe whereof they comprise in this Syllogisme:
One ought not to hold for Hereticks any, but such as resist an Infallible Authoritie in matters of faith. Now its certain, the Pope has not such an Autoritie. Therefore, &c. The second Proposition, adde they, is clear; (as well as the first;) for an Infallible Autoritie i[...] Soverein in its kind, and acknowledgeth no superior, &c.
It is true, Sire, that they place not in the same rank the submission which they render to the Definition of Dogmes, and that which they render to the Definition of particular facts; because the one is a submission of faith, and the other a submission of respect, and of Discipline. The truth, Sire, of things revealed by God, may not enter into comparison with those not revealed; th[...] Dogmes are revealed, and not particular facts---We ought therefore to separate the Dogmes and fact decided in the Constitutions receive[...] by the whole Church; to the en[...] that we submit to the one with [...] submission of faith, and to the other with a submission of pure respect. Thus also the Jansenists themselves, in their La simple verité, à Paris 1664. The common light of reason (say they) shews, even to the most grosse, that two things that are essentially separate, as a particular fact, and a Doctrine of faith, may be also separate in the creance of believers, &c. Hence also the Jansenists assert,
3. That the Church has only a Declarative power, and that as to matters of fact and Discipline; i. e. Ministerial only, and subordinate unto that of Christ. This is evident by their La simple Verité pag. 60.
In the state of this life the Church demands of her children nothing but love and accord: and the obedience she requires of them, touching the facts which she decides, is nothing but modestie and peace; not a creance or belief. She commands them to believe nothing, but what she has learnt of Jesus Christ. She declares to them his Word, not her own; leaving to them, as other things, so also that libertie, which he has given unto them; provided, that they loose not that respect, which they owe to their Mother, and trouble not the union of her children.
4. Hence also, as it naturally follows, the Jansenists allow, yea contend for a Libertie of Conscience, as to matters of fact, and Ecclesiastick determinations about things indifferent, or things not clearly revealed. This evidently appears by, and flows from what was lastly mentioned of them: where all that they require to the Churches definitions, is only a submission of respect; and in case of difference in persuasions, a respectuous silence, so far as the Churches Peace and Vnity require[...] it, &c.
5. Hence also we see what Vniformitie, and Obedience they require, as to Church determinations about matters of fact, (which is the alone object of her power:) namely a submission of respect, or in case of differences a respectuous silence only, not a submission of faith.
6. Hence as to Church Censures they hold, (La simple Verité pag. 58.)
that Excommunication implies a penal death of the soul: and seeing this death is the last of punishments, which the Church can impose, she ought not to ordain it, but conformably to the Scripture, and holy Decrees, which are those of the Spirit of God; for undubitable crimes, and worthy of death, against those who are convicted.
7. Touching Schisme, they hold, that be is the Schismatick, who treats others more Catholick than himself, as guilty of Schisme.
As for Heresie, they say,
1. 'Tis an Heresie to judge of Heresies without the Word of God. 2. That 'tis
an Heresie to believe, that all those, who have a spice of Heresie, are
Hereticks. They make Heresie to consist mostly in the affection; as in
their La simple Verité, pag. 50.
Page 9. line 24. for works, read Augustinus: p. 15. l. 11. for au r. at: p. 16. l. 22. r. Gautruche: p. 20. [...]. 22. r. Jansenius's Augustinus: l. 25. for against r. from: p. 23. l. 27. after besides, adde that: p. 53. l. 26. r. drew: p. 66. l. 19. for nos r. nobis: p. 78. l. 10. for was r. has: p. 81. l. 2. for it r. there: p. 87. l. 24. r. Heretical: p. 93. l. 23. r. rest: p. 139. l. 22. for by r. to: p. 148. l. ult. for compleasant r. pleasant.
Cornelius Jansenius 1585-1638