Other grosse absurdities of witchmongers in this matter of conjurations

SURELIE I cannot see what difference or distinction the witchmongers doo put betweene the knowledge and power of God and the divell; but that they think, if they praie, or rather talke to God, till their hearts ake, he never heareth them; but that the divell dooth knowe everie thought and imagination of their minds, and both can and also will doo any thing for them. For if anie that meaneth good faith with the divell read certeine conjurations, he commeth up (they saie) at a trice. Marrie if another that hath none intent to raise him, read or pronounce the words, he will not stirre. And yet J. Bodin confesseth, that he is afraid to read such conjurations as John Wierus reciteth; least (belike) the divell would come up, and scratch him with his fowle long nailes. In which sort I woonder that the divell dealeth with none other, than witches and conjurors. I for my part have read a number of their conjurations, but never could see anie divels of theirs, except it were in a plaie. But the divell (belike) knoweth my mind; to wit, that I would be loth to come within the compasse of his clawes. But lo what reason such people have. Bodin, Bartholomeus Spineus, Sprenger, and Institor, &c: doo constantlie affirme, that witches are to be punished with more extremitie than conjurors; and sometimes with death, when the other are to be pardoned doing the same offense: bicause (say they) the witches make a league with the divell, & so doo not conjurors. Now if conjurors make no league by their owne confession, and divels indeed know not our cogitations (as I have sufficientlie prooved) then would I weet of our witchmongers the reason, (if I read the conjuration and performe the ceremonie) why the divell will not come at my call? But oh absurd credulitie! Even in this point manie wise & learned men have beene & are abused: wheras, if they would make experience, or dulie expend the cause, they might be soone resolved; specially when the whole art and circumstance is so contrarie to Gods word, as it must be false, if the other be true. So as you may understand, that the papists do not onlie by their doctrine, in bookes & sermons teach & publish conjurations, & the order thereof whereby they may induce men to bestowe, or rather cast awaie their monie upon masses and suffrages for their soules; but they make it also a parcell of their sacrament of orders (of the which number a conjuror is one) and insert manie formes of conjurations into their divine service, and not onelie into their pontificals, but into their masse bookes; yea into the verie canon of the masse.

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