Thomas Boston on the Westminster Confession and the hyper-Covenanter error of political dissent

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Reformed Covenanter

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... 1. How does their refusing to pray for the queen, to pay her cess, and to own her authority, because she is not a covenanted Queen, agree with the Confession of Faith, chap. 23, § 4, “It is the duty of people to pray for magistrates, to pay them tribute and other dues, and to be subject to their authority for conscience sake: infidelity, or difference in religion, doth not make void the magistrate’s just and legal authority?”

I know they will say, that article is meant of lands not covenanted: there had been some shadow of force in this perhaps, if this Confession of Faith had been framed before the Covenant: but upon the contrary it was long after, and was the product of the Solemn League and Covenant, as appears from the first article of the Covenant, in these words, “And shall endeavour to bring the churches of God in the three kingdoms to the nearest conjunction and uniformity in religion, confession of faith,” etc. The Solemn League and Covenant was sworn in the year 1643, the Confession of Faith was sent hither and approven by the Assembly not till the year 1647, for which see the Act of assembly, printed before the Confession. And can we think, that those who, in pursuance of the covenant, framed this Confession of Faith, to declare to the world the faith of covenanters, would so juggle, as to put in articles of faith which would bind others, but not themselves?

2. How does their reckoning the taking the oath of allegiance to the Queen, one of the steps of the Church’s defection, consist with Confession, chap. 22, §2, “A lawful oath, being imposed by lawful authority, in such matters ought to be taken;” and §3, of the same chapter, “Yet it is a sin to refuse an oath, touching any thing that is good and just, being imposed by lawful authority?” It is true, they reckon her no lawful Queen; but one error will not atone for another.

The famous author of the Apologetical Relation [John Brown of Wamphray] was not of our dissenters’ mind (nay, he thought there had been no Christian of their mind, and for ought I know there were none in these days), for, speaking of the reasons why the oath of Supremacy, called then, though’ falsely, the oath of allegiance, should be refused, and answering this objection, viz. such as refuse this oath of Allegiance, declare that they are not dutiful and loyal subjects, he saith, “It hath been shown what difference there is betwixt this oath and the oath of allegiance; and there is no minister or Christian should scruple at the taking the pure oath of allegiance,” Apol. Rel. p. 259. If it was this author’s mind, that no minister or Christian should have scrupled the oath of Allegiance to King Charles II. when he had taken the Covenant, broken it, and overturned the work of Reformation, sure, he would far less have thought it a sin to take the oath of allegiance to the present Queen. ...

For more, see Thomas Boston on the Westminster Confession and the hyper-Covenanter error of political dissent.
 

NaphtaliPress

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Has there ever been a head to head exchange in print or debate between those who reject and those that hold to the later Covenanter/Cameronian view of political dissent which Boston was rejecting? To when does this view date?
 

Reformed Covenanter

Puritanboard Commissioner
Has there ever been a head to head exchange in print or debate between those who reject and those that hold to the later Covenanter/Cameronian view of political dissent which Boston was rejecting? To when does this view date?

I am thinking that the exchanges between the early RPs and the Seceders might be the closest thing to a debate. More recently, Matthew Winzer has some old PB posts wherein he highlighted the differences between the original Covenanter view and that of later, hyper-Covenanters.
 

NaphtaliPress

Administrator
Staff member
Looks like I asked sort of the same thing here. It got lost maybe with the "to do" about avatar changes. :whatswrong:
Looks like we never finished. I'll have to hunt up the old MW comments.
 

Reformed Covenanter

Puritanboard Commissioner
Looks like I asked sort of the same thing here. It got lost maybe with the "to do" about avatar changes. :whatswrong:
Looks like we never finished. I'll have to hunt up the old MW comments.

Yes, that thread was derailed somewhat. :lol:
 
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