Introductory matter

[Page 129]


These bookes that follow in order after the Prophets vnto the Newe Testament, are called Apocrypha, that is, bookes, which were not receiued by a common consent to be read and expounded publikely in the Church, neither yet serued to proue any poynt of Christian religion, saue in in asmuch as they had consent of the other Scriptures called Canonicall to confirme the same, or rather whereon they were grounded: but as bookes proceeding from godly men, were receiued to be read for the aduancement and furtherance of the knowledge of the historie, and for the instruction of godly maners: which bookes declare that at all times God had an especiall care of his Church, and left them not vtterly destitute of teachers and meanes to confirme them in the hope of the promised Messiah, and also witnesse that those calamities that God sent to his Church, were according to his prouidence, who had both so threatned by his Prophets, and so brought it to passe for the destruction of their enemies, and for the triall of his children.