We have annexed, Christian Reader, unto the end of the Revelation, a little treatise, after the manner of an epitome, and short rehearsal of all things that are examined more diligently in the aforesaid book, wherein [the popes'] false and cloaked hypocrisy is abundantly opened, by the comparing of Christ's acts and theirs together; for Christ's rule which saith, we should know them by their works, does not allow for Christians to remain deceived. Also, Paul saith, such false apostles are wicked workers, which be transfigured into Christ's apostles. And no marvel, for Satan himself is sometimes transfigured into an angel of light; therefore it is no great thing if his ministers do take upon them a similitude, as though they were ministers of righteousness, whose end shall be according to their works. Christian men should mark such and fly away from them, for such serve not Christ, but their own bellies, and by sweet preachings and flattering words deceive the hearts of the innocents. And even as Jannes and Jambres withstood Moses, even so these resist the truth. Men they are of corrupt minds and lewd as concerning the faith; but they shall prevail no longer, for their madness shall be uttered unto all men, as were the aforesaid. Thus the people be blinded, falling into unbelief, and are deceived through the cunning conveyance of Antichrist and his adherents. St. John said, there were many antichrists in his time; no wonder if now be more: howbeit by their works they shall be known, and also by their words, for they shall be contrary to Christ both in life and learning, though they profess to follow him. Now let us consider popes, cardinals, bishops, suffragans, archdeacons, deacons, officials, parsons, abbots, with deans, and friars, sumners, pardoners, and these papal notaries, take heed to monks, canons, anchors, hermits, nuns and sisters, and mark how they follow Christ. We will chiefly touch the head, which is the Pope, although it may be verified through all his members.
Christ was poor, saying, The foxes have holes, and the birds of the air have nests, but the Son of man hath not whereon to lay his head.
The Pope and his adherents are rich, for the Pope saith, Rome is mine, Sicily is mine, Corsica is mine, etc. And his adherents also have fruitful possessions, this every man knoweth.
JOHN 6; JOHN 18
Christ was meek and lowly, and forsook this worldly glory, and fled alone unto the mountains when the people would have made him a king, saying, My kingdom is not of this world.
The Pope is conceited and proud, saying, I am a Lord of both the realms, earthly and heavenly, and the emperor is my subject: this truth is testified to in his law, Dist. 96. ca. Si imperator.
Christ filled with humility, meekly washed his disciples' feet.
The Pope saith, The emperors and kings shall kneel and kiss my feet, and is not ashamed to express it in the law. ca. Cum olim de privil. elec.
LUKE 22; PHIL. 2
Christ came not to be served, but to serve, taking upon him the similitude of a servant; humbling himself, and made himself of no reputation to serve us.
The Pope will be served, and saith, it were a shame if he should be so humble himself. Dist. 86. ca. Quando necessitas.
Christ walked barefoot with his disciples, both in wet and dry, heat and cold, to teach the people, as it is evident through the Gospels.
The Pope and bishops will keep their feet full clean with shoes of gold and silver, set with precious stones, and will not preach themselves, but say it is sufficient to cause others to preach. ca. Inter ceteram de offic. Iv. or. After this manner might the Turk be Pope also.
Christ would not suffer that doves, sheep and oxen needed for the offering should be sold in the Temple of God, but drove out the buyers and sellers with whips.
The Pope and bishops allow hawkers and peddlers in the church that minister the sacraments for money daily unto the common people. And those in authority over the merchants excuse their behavior that they may, also, be partakers of the winnings to maintain their illegitimate children and other such necessities. These acts one may see daily.
Christ saith, Freely ye have received, therefore freely give.
The Pope hath Judas' mind, for you get nothing from him without money, for he selleth both prayer and preaching.
Christ ate with his disciples in a lowly, humble fashion, not requiring the highest seat of honor.
The Pope sitteth high on an elaborate throne, and will be served gloriously, with much prolonged kneeling, men to carve his morsels, wearing specially designed clothing, blaspheming God with oaths, and many other vices which we may see daily.
MATTHEW 14; MATTHEW 15
Christ was in hills weeping and praying and walked in deserts, feeding many thousands both with meat and preaching.
The Pope sitteth in his castles and towers with music playing amidst much laughter, and the hungry poor shall sit at the gate. He refuses to feed them himself for in his eyes it would be a shameful thing for the Pope to behave in such a manner.
Christ lay and slept in a boat on the hard boards. For chamberlains he had fishermen, who cried out to him for fear of perishing upon the tempestuous sea.
The Pope always sleeps in soft comfort. No man may awake him until he has had sufficient sleep. His chamberlains shall be ready with marshals and others to keep his hall and chamber free from all outside disturbances. Porters at his gate keep out the poor: their Lord they will not awake.
Christ fasted and sought the fruit on the tree when he hungered, and found none thereon.
The Pope hath great provisions in cities and towns. He has access to the best which may be found, including spices, sauces and syrups of every color, prepared by the finest chefs, presented with a creative touch as if for royalty.
Christ lay in a stable with few clothes, between an ox and an ass, for the place was narrow.
The Pope, in rich chambers, with quilts, curtains, carpets and cushions, spread all about, with sweet smells and painted walls.
Christ chose poor men to be his disciples, commanding them to be innocent as doves.
The Pope chooses subtle men and crafty, full of pride, or else they are not meet for him.
Christ rode simply on an ass, and had twelve that followed him all about on foot.
The Pope rides on a fine steed, much higher than did his master; and hath many more than twelve following him on horseback, all with swords and bucklers, as if to battle.
Christ bade his disciples to go into all the world to preach the Gospel to every creature.
The Pope and his bishops forbid it on pain of disobedience and excommunication, except for those whom they appointed preachers.
Christ was naked, beaten, scourged, false witness having been brought against him.
The Pope and his adherents are well clothed with precious garments, wearing new ones everyday; and false witnesses they have plenty, testifying with them against the innocents.
Christ came to seek the poor and comfort them; he was not demanding of them, but was mild, having pity on them.
The Pope and his bishops summon and cite the poor, but not regarding their adversity in poverty. Rather, they curse them if they come not. Those who do come go away sorrier and sicker in soul and in purse than they were before.
Christ commanded that we should not swear at all, neither by heaven, neither by the temple, etc., but that our words should be yea, yea, nay, nay.
The Pope saith, if any man will receive any office under us, he shall be sworn before, yea, and give a great sum of money. ca. Signifi. De elect.
Christ had a crown of thorns thrust upon his head, so that the blood ran down upon his amiable countenance, and sharp nails through his precious hands.
The Pope must wear three crowns of gold, set with precious stones; he lacketh no diadems; his hands and fingers with jeweled bracelets and rings are royally decked: he surpasses Christ's poverty by far. ca. Constat. Dist. xcvi.
Christ took the cross of painful affliction upon himself, commanding his disciples to follow him, saying, He that taketh not his cross and follow me, is not meet for me.
The Pope and his bishops take the cross of pride, and have it borne before them, well gilt and enameled, to have a worship of this world. As for another cross, thy know not.
Christ prayed his Father forgive them that trespassed against him, yea, and for them that put him to death.
Our bishops pray the King vengeance on them that resist them; with forgiveness they have no acquaintance.
Christ would have his disciples to preach the gospel.
The Pope and his bishops will have men to preach fables, and then to grant dispensations, and many days of pardon.
Christ commanded his disciples to know his law, and bade the Jews to search the Scriptures; and Moses exhorted the Israelites to teach the law to their young children. Also, that they should have it bound as a sign in their hands, that it might ever be before their eyes; and caused them to write it on the posts and doors of their houses.
The Pope and his bishops say that it is not meet for us to know it; they make it heresy and treason to the King to know Christ or his laws; they have dug cisterns of their own traditions, and have stopped up the pure fountains of Israel. Oh Lord, in whom is all out trust, come down from the heavens; why dost thou tarry so long, seeing thine adversary thus prevailing against thee?
Christ approved his law, confirming it by his own death.
The Pope and his bishops are busy scheming how they can destroy it, magnifying their own laws instead, for to maintain their fat bellies.
Christ would have men visit prisoners to comfort and deliver them.
The Pope, with his adherents, discomfort the poor and the true, putting them in prison for the truth.
Christ, whom the Roman Catholics call their example, never imprisoned nor persecuted one person.
The Pope and his champions persecute, punish, imprison, and put to death those that are disobedient to their voluptuous pleasure. Ye see how straight they follow Christ's steps.
Christ commanded his disciples that if any man trespass against them, they should go and reprove him privily. If he would not obey and be reconciled, then should they take with them one or two witnesses. If he would not hear them, then they should tell it to the whole congregation; and if he would still continue in his stubbornness, they should avoid his company.
The Pope and bishops will cast straight into prison, there to remain in irons, to make them abjure the truth, condescending to their wills. But if he be strong-willed, not forsaking the truth, they will condemn him without audience, for fear of losing the income from indulgences and offerings, as well as their benefices, wherewith the church is poisoned.
Christ charged Peter thrice to keep well and nourish his sheep.
The Pope chargeth much more to keep well his money. As for the sheep, he sheareth and punisheth with infinite exactions.
MATTHEW 8; MARK 1; LUKE 5
Christ healed the sick, and after having performed many miracles did ever so lightly command that they should tell no man who did heal them.
The Pope and bishops give great gifts to minstrels and messengers, to lewd liars and flatterers, to cry their name about, that they may have worship in this world.
Christ had no secular courts to plead the matters of his disciples, for they would not resist evil.
The Pope and bishops have many, with men of law to oppress the poor in opposition of the law of mercy. Forgive they will not, but ever be avenged.
MATTHEW 8; MATTHEW 17
Christ, traversing cities and towns, hunted down devils which dwelled in men, casting them out by virtue of the words of his mouth.
The Pope and bishops hunt the wild deer, the fox, and the hare in their private parks with great cries and horns blowing, with hounds running.
God was called the Holy Father of Jesus Christ his Son.
The Pope is called Most Holy Father of Satan's children, and taketh that name on him with Lucifer's pride. His disciples say he is God on earth, and we are taught by Christ's law to have but one God.
Christ sat in the midst of the Doctors, asking and hearing them.
The Pope and bishops sit in thrones with glorious miters, judging and condemning by their manmade laws. A small matter becomes a lengthy judicial process, which could be settled quickly by citing the law of God, but which would then prove to be financial loss, their law without profit.
Christ taught that a man should not forsake his wife except for the cause of adultery.
The Pope and bishops will make divorces for money as often as they like; and by so doing they pillage the poor, making themselves rich, thinking it a light thing to break the law of God.
Christ sent the Holy Ghost in fervent love to teach all the truth unto them which were chosen of God.
The Pope and bishops send commandments all about to curse and ask vengeance on them that resist their tyranny, and absolve those they have cursed for monetary payment. All their doctrines have golden tails, for money is ever the end. Give them money and you have fulfilled all their laws.
Christ kept and fulfilled the old law and the new, and all righteousness.
The Pope and bishops keep their own traditions and laws, but the law of God is nonexistent in their minds.
Christ said men should know his disciples by their charity because they should love one another as he hath loved them.
The Pope causeth his to be known by their shaved heads; by gathering up of tithes, mass-pence, and offerings; by the golden trentals [30 consecutive days of masses for the dead], and the salaries for the singers; by Peter's-pence gathering, and striving for money; by charging fees for performing weddings, baptisms, and many more marks hath he given them: as for charity, they know it not at all.
Christ bad them that he healed to go and sin no more.
The Pope and bishops have feigned penance, commanding men to fast on bread and water, to go barefoot, or without a shirt, and to offer certain idols money or cattle. For some penitents masses must need be sung because their confessors desire to make a profit by them. Other penitents must go about the church and churchyard with a taper burning in his hand; while others are punished by monetary penalties, though they offended not.
Christ sent 72 disciples to preach salvation and heaven to them that believe in the name of Christ.
The Pope and bishops send four sects of beggars to give the people pardon by their master Antichrist, and to sell heaven to whomever they wish. The apostles knew no such things.
Christ was buried in a garden, in a poor monument, without any funeral pomp.
The Pope and bishops are buried in gilded tombs, with solemn ceremonies and burning torches, with angels gloriously portrayed as bearing their souls to heaven. Notwithstanding, it is to be feared they go to sup with the devil.
Christ saith, If thou wilt be perfect, go and sell all thy goods and give unto the poor, for then shalt thou have treasure in heaven.
The Pope saith, If thou wilt be perfect, give me thy money, and I will give thee a pardon that shall fully absolve thee of guilt and punishment. I will for thy money give thee the key of heaven's gates.
Christ said unto his apostles, The kings and princes of the Gentiles have rule and power over them, but you shall not so have.
The Pope saith, All emperors, kings and lords be my subjects. This is read daily in his bulls, wherein he commandeth the nobility, like a master doth his servant.
MATTHEW 23; MARK 10
Christ saith, He that among you will be greatest, let him be your servant.
The Pope saith, The emperor must swear an oath unto me as unto his Lord, that he will be my subject, and exalt and worship me with honor. ca. Tibi Domino. Dist. 63.
Christ saith that they worship him in vain with men's doctrines and traditions.
The Pope saith, My spiritual laws and traditions shall be kept as duly as if God had commanded them himself, or as if St. Peter had preached them himself. ca. Si omnes. Dist. 19.
Christ saith, I am the way and the truth; follow me in my learning. And rule you by the Scripture, for that shall be your judge.
The Pope saith, Ye shall in all things follow the Church of Rome, (by that meaneth he and his cardinals), Dist. 19. ca. Si Romanorum.
Christ saith, He that believeth and is baptized, he shall be saved, but he that believeth not shall be damned.
The Pope saith, He that giveth much money for my pardon shall be absolved of guilt and punishment, and then must he needs be saved. He that teacheth otherwise is a heretic. To this do his bulls and pardons testify.
Christ promiseth forgiveness of sin and the kingdom of heaven unto them that repent and will amend their lives.
The Pope saith that no man can be saved except he receive the sacrament of penance, for they bring in money.
Christ saith, You shall love your enemies and shall do good unto them that hate you.
The Pope saith, They be enemies to me and my cardinals will be cursed with the greater excommunication, and cannot be absolved without much money. Of this is evident enough.
Christ commanded his disciples not to resist evil, but if a man strike them on the one cheek they should offer him the other.
The Pope saith, We may avenge and drive away with force. De sen. excom. ca. Dilecto.
Christ, saith God the Father, is my dear Son. Him shall you hear, for his yoke is sweet and his burden light.
The Pope saith, You shall hear me and my commandment shall be kept and received of every man. Dist. 93. ca. Si cujus. And even if my commandment and burden are too heavy to be borne, yet shall ye obey me. Dist. 19. ca. In. memoriam.
Christ said unto the two brethren, Who hath set me to be your judge in temporal goods?, as though he should say, It pertaineth not to me, but unto worldly judges.
The Pope saith, I am judge in all manner of causes, for they bring money unto me. 9. q. 3. Conquestas.
Christ saith, Give the emperor such as pertaineth unto him as tribute and custom, for I have paid tax for both myself and Peter.
The Pope saith, I care not for this, so I excommunicate all them that ask any tax or tribute of me and my shavelings [tonsured priests], for I have made them all exempt. ca. Novit. de senten. excom. et. ca. Si quis de cons. Dist. 1.
Christ saith, Peter put up thy sword into the sheath, for he that striketh with sword shall perish with the sword.
The Pope saith, You emperors, kings, princes and lords take swords, spears, battle-axes, clubs and guns, and help me to slay them that will not obey my tyranny. This must an emperor do, or else he must be guilty of perjury. After this manner hath Julius the Pope slain 16,000 men in one day. Was that not a fine example of pastoring? Did he not feed the sheep well which Christ had entrusted into his care?
Christ said, Drink you all of this cup, for this is the blood of my promise.
The Pope saith, I will not grant this, for my priest alone shall drink of it because it may cry vengeance on them alone. Others shall not drink of it under pain of heresy.
Christ saith, Ye are my friends if ye do all things that I myself command you.
The Pope saith, You shall do as I bid you, for I have power and authority to make laws, and by them you shall live.
MATTHEW 19; 1 COR. 7
Christ saith that chastity is not given to every man; they that have it given, let them take it, giving thanks to God; and let the other use the remedy which God hath prepared; for it is better to marry than to burn.
The Pope saith, All monks, friars and nuns shall vow and swear chastity, be it given them or not; my priests also shall not be wedded; but as for to keep whores, and ravish other men's daughters and wives, these shall be exempt.
MATTHEW 15; ROMANS 14; COL. 2; TITUS 1
Christ saith, All meats that man taketh with thanks staineth not his soul; for all things are pure to them that are pure.
The Pope saith, He that eateth eggs, butter, or flesh, in these days that I have commanded to be fasted, doth not only stain his soul with sin, but also is to be denounced a heretic. Dist. 4. ca. Statuimus. This agrees with Christ as light doth with darkness. And yet have we thus been blinded long, that we could never perceive this Antichrist till now in the last days.
MATTHEW 16; MATTHEW 18
Christ said unto his disciples, That which you bind on earth shall be bound in heaven, and that which you loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven.
The Pope claims greater authority: for he will loose souls out of purgatory, commanding the angels to fetch them out, and all for money. Without money you get nothing.
Christ saith, When you have done all things that I have commanded you, even then say you are unprofitable servants.
The Pope saith, Do these things that I command thee, and you can be assured that thou art a just and religious man, and that thou hast deserved heaven. And as for myself, though I err in all things, bringing many thousands with me into damnation, yet shall no man rebuke me, but call me the most holiest father. Dist. 40. ca. Si Papa.
MATTHEW 16; HOSEA 6; MATTHEW 9
Christ teacheth us to fulfill the works of mercy to the poor, ever commending mercy above offerings and sacrifice.
The Pope teacheth us to give our money for pardons, masses, dirges, images and churches, so that we may make an offering unto their bellies. And he that saith it is better to give our charity to the poor, as Christ saith, is counted a semi-heretic because he goes about to spoil the Pope's sales.
ROMANS 4; JOHN 11
Christ suffered death for our sins and rose for our justification, or else we all should have perished.
The Pope saith, If thou buy my pardon and be buried in a Franciscan's coat, thou will certainly be saved. By this he teacheth Christ has suffered in vain, since a friar's coat will save a man.
1 JOHN 2; JAMES 5
Christ alone is out mediator, which maketh unity betwixt his Father and us; a prime example of how the prayer of a just man is very good and profitable.
The Pope saith, The greatest power and salvation next to Christ belongs to me. Dist. 60. ca. Si Papa. I marvel then why he is so curious to cause us to worship the saints that are asleep rather than himself, since he claims a greater power than did the saints when they were alive.
Christ saith, Whosoever breaketh one of my least commandments shall be called the least (that is to say 'nothing') in the kingdom of heaven.
The Pope saith, What has his law to do with me? I am subject to no laws. 25 q. 1. ca. Omnia. Therefore, seldom does the Pope abide by Christ's commandments, and is always against them. In fact, he even reverses his own laws as often as men bring him money, for that is what he loves above all else.
Christ's law is fulfilled through charity.
The Pope's law is fulfilled by money. If thou have no money to give, thou shalt carry a faggot, though thou has done no wrong. Pay them off and they see no evil, hear no evil, do what thou wilt.
EPHESIANS 1; COL. 1; 1 COR. 10
Christ is the head of the church, as the apostle doth testify; and also the stone whereon the church is built. This church is the congregation of the faithful; the very body of Christ.
The Pope saith, I am the head of the church. Dist. 19. ca. Enim vero. …..and the seat of Rome is the stone whereon the church is built. Dist. 19. Ita Diminus. Can anything be more contrary to the glory of God, than thus to despoil him of his kingdom, which he so dearly hath bought, shedding his precious blood for it?
2 PETER 2; 2 TIMOTHY 3
Christ's law, which is the holy Scripture, came by inspiration of the Holy Ghost, which did infuse it abundantly into the hearts of the apostles. From this selfsame Spirit it has its authority and interpretation.
The Pope saith, I am the Lord of the Scripture and can either obey or disobey its teachings and precepts, for from me doth it take its full authority. ca. Si omnes. And for a sign that this is so, the Scripture of Christ is laid under his feet when he is at mass.
Christ's apostle saith that a bishop ought to be so well learned that he, with the Scripture, is able to overcome all that be against the true faith.
The Pope and his bishops will dispute in Scripture with no man, but cast them first into prison. Efficient means have they invented to wring fingers so sore that blood shall burst out at their fingers' ends. They pin them and scourge them with an infinite variety of other tortures, encouraging them to forsake the truth to escape the pain. Afterward they are forced to swear on a book to tell no man of their treatment. Thus, by such cruel and unjust methods do the Papists deal with men. And if they cannot subdue men's wills to theirs, then do they commit them unto the secular power to be burned.
Christ's accusation, the cause of his condemnation and death, was written over his head in Hebrew, Greek and Latin, that all men might know the cause. Thus, by so doing, the Romans attempted to prove the justice of the sentence in the eyes of all men - by joining together offense and judgment.
The Pope and bishops condemn men, committing them to the secular power that others should execute their sentence. But this is a mischievous abomination because they do not reveal to the secular power the cause why they put men to death, be they honorable divines, masters or doctors. For shame, you blue-blood nobility that ponder this matter with indifference. Beware how you carry out executions without knowing the cause. Do you really think their blood will be required of you, if for another man's pleasure you destroy the child of God? They will say unto you, as the Jews said unto Pilate concerning Christ, If he were not an evil doer we would not have delivered him unto you. Trust not their words, for (no doubt) they are liars. Know the cause yourselves, and hear the matter unfeignedly. Has it ever occurred to you that the reason for their secrecy is to cover-up their injustice and tyranny? Be, therefore, no longer ignorant children to them which ought to be your servants. God hath given you his Spirit, grace and understanding. Hide not the talent that God hath given you, but do your diligence to see justice executed, omitting all tyranny, for that is your office and responsibility, appointed you specifically by God.
Christ saith, Blessed are ye when men hate you, curse you, and excommunicate you for the righteousness, - that is to say, you are guilty of nothing, nor worth such affliction.
The Pope and his bishops say that their curse is to be feared, yea and that it maketh men black as a coal in the sight of God, though they have not offended; insomuch that they needs be damned, unless they are absolved. But Christ saith these innocent be blessed; wherefore either Christ is false, or they are most vain liars.
Christ said, When thou makest a dinner or feast, call not thy friends, kinsmen and neighbors that are rich, but the poor, lame and blind, which are not able to recompense thee; then shalt thou be happy, for it shall be rewarded thee in the resurrection of the just.
The Pope and bishops call no such persons, for they think it beneath them. Instead, they call men of great authority and riches, who will return the honor by giving them a feast. They would rather have their bellies well stuffed in this world, than to tarry for the promise of Christ. They think it too long a coming.
MATTHEW 12; LUKE 6
Christ saith, Either make the tree good and his fruit good also, or else make the tree naught and his fruit naught also: meaning, the tree first should be good and then bring forth good fruit; the fruit maketh not the tree good, but the tree maketh the fruit good. Although we cannot know that the tree is good but by his fruit, (for we can judge nothing but by his visible works), yet God seeth the living Spirit in the root, which, in the time that God hath appointed him, shall bring forth his fruit, proving the tree to be good, although now he seem dead unto us. The tree is Faith, which is the mother of all good works, which ever worketh by charity when the need arises.
The Pope and bishops say that the fruit maketh the tree good, most contrary to all Scripture and reason. And thus they turn the tree and roots upside down, while they affirm that faith flows from and is made good from works done, and not the contrary: even as a man would say the fruit bringeth forth and maketh good the tree, and not the contrary. Oh! What madness is this! They would make men believe, if they should long continue, that the moon is made of green cheese.
Christ saith, I am the door of the fold: he that entereth not in by the door, but by some other way, is a thief and a murderer, and regardeth not the sheep.
The Pope, yea, and all the clergy, (for the most part), enter not in by Christ. One entereth by a bag of money, wherewith he buyeth a fat benefice. Another entereth by serving great men and currying favor. Another, because he is born a great man, and must be made a cardinal or bishop. Some have connections with important men who will speak a good word for them to the king or other great men. Some enter through their curious singing and delicate dancing; a few, or next to none, for virtue and learning.
Christ saith, I am a good shepherd; a good shepherd giveth his life for his sheep.
The Pope and bishops say also that they are good shepherds; although they shear and strip the sheep so closely that they leave not one lock of wool on their on their backs. And in all points they may be likened unto the shepherds of which Zacharias prophesied, saying, I shall raise up a shepherd in the earth which shall not visit those who are forsaken, and shall not seek those which have gone astray, nor heal the diseased, not nourish and maintain those which remain. Such a shepherd shall nourish himself, but not the sheep, who cry out to him, saying, 'Oh! Thou shepherd and idol, do you think we believe you will give your life for the sheep?'
Christ commanded his disciples to call no man Father on earth, showing them that they had but one Father, which is in heaven.
The Pope will be called Most Holy, his cardinals Most Reverend, his bishops Reverend, his abbots and priors Most, and other glorious titles have they that surpass the title, Master. Except you call them by those names and titles, you shall find them indignant, despite the Lord's admonition.
Christ's faithful servant Stephen said that God Almighty dwelleth not in temples that are made with man's hands, according to the prophet's words, Heaven is my seat, the earth my footstool. What house will you build for me?, saith the Lord. Which is the place of my rest? Did not my hands make all these things?
The Pope and his adherents say that he dwelleth in this place and that place. The friars say, 'We have him, you must buy him from us.' The monks say, 'He is with us. Be good to our monastery, and ye shall be sure to have him. And so run the fools from Herod to Pilate. But they find not Christ, for he dwelleth in no place, but in the heart of a faithful man, which is the very temple of God.
1 COR. 3; ACTS 17; EXODUS 20; JOHN 5
Christ's apostle Paul saith, We ought not to think God is like gold, silver, carved stones, or any such thing as man imagineth.
The Pope and his adherents say that he is like a stock and a stone, and causeth men to make images of him, though God commanded contrary, saying, Thou shalt make no graven image, neither any manner of similitude of those things which are in heaven above, or on the earth beneath, neither of those things which are in the water, or under the earth, neither shalt thou honor or worship them. Good Christian, beware of these idols, as St. John counselleth thee. Truly I think it be one of the greatest causes of this execration which God hath sent into the world for sin.
Christ said unto Peter, Thou art Simon, the son of Jonah, thou shalt be called Cephas, which, if it be interpreted, signifieth a stone; as St. John saith in his gospel.
The Pope saith that Cephas signifieth the head - Dist. Xxii. ca. Sacrosancta - even the head of all bishops. Here doth he plainly contrary to gospel, which expoundeth Peter to be a stone. What impudency is this! I wouldn't be surprised if he were to say an ass were a man if it would be advantageous for him.
There are infinite other things wherein he is contrary to Christ, inasmuch that, if it be diligently examined, I think there is no word that Christ spake, but the other hath taught or made a law against it. But to avoid tediousness, we shall leave them unto your own judgment, for they are soon searched out and discovered. Judge, Christian reader, all these things with a simple eye; be not biased or partial toward the one or the other, but judge them by the Scripture, and acknowledge that to be the truth which God's word doth allow, avoiding all other doctrine, for it springeth from Satan. Be not ashamed to confess poor Christ, and to take him for thy head over these ravenous wolves. For then shall he confess thee again before his Father and the angels in heaven. Then shalt thou be inheritor with Jesus Christ, and be the faithful son of thy Father in heaven, to whom be all glory eternally. Amen.
Reprinted in The Work of John Frith [Great Britain: The Sutton
Courtenay Press, 1978], pp. 299-318. Some editing by this present writer
has taken place in the interest of increasing the comprehension of the