Sunday, June 3, 2012

The Manuscript Quod in ecclesia Christi magistratus sit


A manuscript dated 1534 is kept at the Central  Library in Zurich – Ms S 34/190.

The title of the manuscript is ‘Quod in ecclesia Christi magistratus sit. Qui iure illam adversus haereticorum seditions, et tyrannorum incursions defendat.”

The following are six key statements that Bullinger makes in this manuscript.

      1. There is one God, one testament and one spirit of both the old and the new people.
      2. Consequently, the religion, the faith and the church of the ancients and ours is also the same, a few certain figures having been subtracted which had been introduced in consideration of the people and the times.
      3. Moreover, since there was a magistracy in the ancient (church), it follows logically, that it has not been annulled in ours.
      4. Furthermore, it is his duty to restrain blasphemy, to forbid heresies from the church and to take care of discipline.
      5. It is also his duty to guard the evangelical truth and its worshippers with arms, if it is truly necessary, against the wrongs of the godless ones.
      6. If the magistrate neglects this, dealing in the meatime (only) with civil justice and the like, he is impious and less than perfect (since he neglects religious matters).

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