Phillimore continues his discourse on the Act against Images:
The Privy Council in Westerton v. Liddell (Moore, Special Report, p. 171), said of this statute: “No doubt, however, it implies that to retain them is illegal, but it relates, in their Lordships’ opinion, to the destruction of images already ordered to be removed, but which either had not been removed, or, having been so, were still retained for private veneration and worship…”
But I doubt very much whether this Act ought to be construed to prohibit the erection of all images, for the future, in all church, a question not discussed before the Privy Council. There are no express words to this effect. I incline to the opinion that it had a temporary purpose in view, namely, to prevent the restoration of the identical images to church which had been, or ought to have been, taken out of them. It was deemed, as the Thirty-eigth Article deems the Homily on the Perils of Idolatry, “necessary for these times.” I do not think this Act was ever referred to in the ecclesiastical documents of Queen Elizabeth’s reign. I have said that it was repealed by Mary, and it was restored by James I. by the repeal of Mary’s Act. But surely it is reasonable to expect that if it contained universal and perpetual prohibitions of images and books, some reference would have been made to it in the reign of Elizabeth; more especially when it is remembered that the Homily “against the Peril of Idolatry,” in the second book, published by authority in 1562, referred to in the Thirty-fifth of the Thirty-nine Articles, and which, in fact, a fervid controversial sermon against the use as well as the abuse of images, should not, unless I have overlooked it, make any reference to the fact that the statute had abolished all images in 1549, and, as it is contended, the Order in Council of 1547.