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Jerusalem. - Peter said unto him, Lord, why cannot I follow John xiii. 37. - Matt. xxvl thee now? I will 'lay down my life for thy sake.
Jesus answered him, Wilt thou lay down thy life John xiii.38. for my sake? Verily, verily, I say unto thee, The cock shall not crow, till thou hast denied me thrice.
Christ institutes the Eucharist . Matt. xxvi. 26–30. Mark xiv. 22—26. Luke xxii, 19, 20. 1 Cor. xi. 23, And as they were eating, Jesus took bread, Matt. xxvi.26. * ManyGreek and * blessed it, and brake it, and gave it to the gave thanks disciples, and said, Take, eat; this is my body.
see Mark vi. 41.
30 ON THE INSTITUTION OF THE EUCHARIST. A few hours only before his death, our blessed Saviour instituted the holy Eucharist. He knew that the long and progressive series of prophecies, visions, types, and figures, which had predicted his incarnation and sufferings, were now on the point of being accomplished. He knew that the Mosaic dispensation was on the point of being completed, with all its typical ceremonies and observances. A new and spiritual kingdom was to be engrafted on it, with other rites and other sacraments. The holy of holies was soon to be thrown open ; and man, sinful man, through the atoning blood of a Redeemer, was to be permitted to hold there the highest communion with his Maker, in commemoration of the exceeding great love and all-sufficient sacrifice of his only Son. That we may endeavour to arrive at a clearer comprehension of this great mystery, and those holy memorials, which our Lord instituted “ for the continual remembrance of his death,” it will be advisable to refer to the Jewish feasts in the Levitical law, which evidently prefigure the great sacrifice of Christ, which was to be offered as an atonement for the sins of man. In pursuance of this plan, we will consider the nature of the Jewish feasts, and the analogy which the Christian feast of the Lord's Supper, in which we eat and drink the body and blood of Christ, bears to the ancient rite among the Jews of feasting upon things sacrificed, and eating of those things that were offered up to God. The Jewish sacrifices are generally divided in the following manner.
First, Such as were wholly offered up to God, and burnt upon the altar; these were the holocausts, or burnt offerings. Secondly, Such as were not only offered up to God upon the altar, but of which the priests also had a part to eat; and which were again subdivided in the sin offerings, and the trespass offerings. Thirdly, Such as were not only offered up to God, and a portion bestowed on the priests also, but of which the owners themselves had a share likewise : these were called Dingbw, or peace offerings, which contained in them, as the Jewish doctors speak, byab photo 1727 phoi mwy phao, “a portion for God, and the priests, and the owners also.”
The first of these, perhaps, to signify some especial mystery concerning Christ, were wholly offered up to God, and burnt upon the altar; yet when they were
Luke xxiL 19. which is given for you : this do in remembrance Jerusalem.
not 702'y nyayp, offerings for the whole congregation, but for any particular person, there were always peace offerings regularly annexed to them, that the owners, at the same time when they offered a sacrifice to God, might feast upon that sacrifice.
The second of these were not eaten by the owners, but by the priests; to shew that the owners, being for the present in a state of guilt, for which they now made atonement, being not worthy, the priests, acting as their mediators to God, and as their proxies, did eat of the sacrifice for them.
Thirdly, in the peace offerings; because such as brought them had no uncleanness upon them, (Levit. vii. 20.) and so were perfectly reconciled to God, and in covenant with him; therefore they were in their own persons to eat of those sacrifices, which they had offered unto God as a federal rite between God and them. These sacrifices were considered to bring peace to the altar, to the priests, and to the owners; as they each separately partook of them. Throughout Scripture we find that the eating of the sacrifice was a due and proper appendix unto all sacrifices; and that it is mentioned continually as a rite belonging to sacrifice in general ; see Exod. xxxiv. 15. Numb. xxv. 2. Psalm cvi. 28. Exod. xxxii. 6. 1 Sam. ix. 13. and xvi. 2-11. with many others. Profane writers likewise frequently mention this custom, as being always observed by the Heathen in their sacrifices. Homer alludes to it. Plato, in his second book de Legibus, calls these feasts 'Eoprai perà Oecov, feasts after divine worship offered up to the gods. Plutarch also reports of Catiline and his conspirators, ÖTE karadúoaYTES ävepwrov, éyetoavto Tūv paprūv, that sacrificing a man, they did all eat somewhat of the flesh ; using this religious rite as a bond to confirm them together in their treachery. From the universal prevalence of this rite, then, we have every reason to consider it as having been, from the very earliest period, divinely appointed, and originally a part of the primæval religion; typifying the atoning sacrifice of the future Messiah, who expressly declares, “Except ye eat the flesh of the Son of Man, and drink his blood, ye have no life in you," John vi. 51-56. " Christ, our Passover, is sacrificed for us; therefore let us keep the feast, (that is, the paschal feast, upon this sacrificed Christ,) with the unleavened bread of sincerity and truth," I Cor. v. 7,8. Wherefore I conclude that the LORD'S SUPPER is a feast upon a sacrifice, or Epulum ex Oblatis, in the same manner as the Jewish feasts upon sacrifices under the law, and the feasts upon 'EIAQAQOYTA, (things offered to idols) among the Heathens. And this I think will be proved by a reference to the tenth chapter of 1 Cor. from the 13th to the 22d verses, where St. Paul supposes these three are parallels, and that a perfect analogy exists between them, or else the whole strength of his argument fails.
Again, under the law, the eating of the feasts upon God's sacrifices, was considered as a federal rite between God and those that offered them, in the same way as the ancient Hebrews and other Eastern nations ratified and sealed every covenant by eating and drinking together; and, among them, it was accounted a most heinous offence to be guilty of the breach of a covenant thus confirmed. Salt, as the natural appendix of all feasts, was always put upon every sacrifice, and was regarded as a symbol of friendship and kindness ; from whence the
Luke xxii.20. Mark xiv. 23. Luke xxii. 20
ancients called it Amicitiæ Symbolum. And from this custom the proverbial expression among the Greeks originated—"Alas kai rpáresa, “ salt and the table;" and among whom the violation of a covenant of salt was considered as the violation of the most sacred league of friendship. Several passages of Scripture are illustrated by the application of this custom, Lev. ii. 13. Num. xviii. 19. 2 Chron. xiii. 5. Further, when God delivered the Israelites from the bondage of Egypt, he manifested himself in a peculiar manner among them : and while they sojourned in tents in the wilderness, He commanded a tent, or tabernacle, to be built, that he might sojourn with them also. But when the Jews took possession of their land, and built them houses, God would have a fixed dwelling place; and his moveable tabernacle was turned into a standing temple. And, to make the analogy more complete, it was furnished with things suitable to a dwelling place-a table, with a candlestick : the former always furnished with bread, having dishes, spoons, bowls, and covers, belonging to it; and the candlestick having its lamps continually burning. There was also a continual fire kept in the house of God upon the altar. And, to carry the resemblance still further, meat and drink were brought into the house of God; for besides the flesh of the beasts offered up in sacrifice, which were partly consumed on the altar, and partly eaten by the priests, as a portion of God's family, and so to be maintained by him, there was a mincah, or meat offering, and a libamen, or drink offering, which were always joined to the daily sacrifice.
The sacrifices, then, being God's feasts, they that did partake of them must be considered as his convivæ, and in a manner to eat and to drink with him. That sacrifices were thus regarded as a federal rite in Scripture, is proved in Levit. ii. 13. in Num. xviii. 19. and 2 Chron. xiii. 5. where it is called “the salt of the covenant," and "a covenant of salt," to signify that as men ratified their covenants by eating and drinking, to which salt was a necessary appendix, so in the same way God, by these sacrifices and feasts upon them, did ratify and confirm his covenant with those that were partakers of them ; who, as it were, might be considered as eating and drinking with Him-God's portion of the covenant being visibly consumed by his holy fire on the altar, which was always kept burning there.-See Levit. ix. 24. 2 Chron. vii. 1. Fire likewise, the symbol of the Lord's presence, fell frequently on the victims offered to the Lord, as a visible demonstration of his acceptance of his portion, and of his entering into covenant with the offerers.-See Gen. iv. 4. xv. 17. Judges xiii. 19, 20, &c.
As we have now shewn that the sacrifices of the Levitical law, with the feasts upon those sacrifices, were regarded as federal rites between God and men, in like manner the Lord's Supper, under the Gospel dispensation, which we have already proved to be Epulum Sacrificiale (a feast upon a sacrifice,) must also be considered as Epulum Federale, a federal feast of reconciliation and amity between God and men, by which we are taken into a sacred covenant, and an inviolable league of friendship with Him. In comparing this account of the ancient mode of celebrating the Jewish feasts with the institution of the Holy Sacrament given by the inspired writers, it is to be remarked, that when Christ
Mark xiv. 23. and when he had given thanks, he gave it to Jerusalem. :
then, Mat. xxvi. 27. saying, Drink ye all of it;
instituted the eucharistical feast, he said, “ This is my blood of the New Testa ment"-" This cup is the New Testament in my blood;" that is, not only the seal of the old covenant, but the sanction of the new covenant. The confirmation of the old covenant was by the blood of bulls and of goats, (Exod. xxiv. 5. and Heb. ix. 19.) because blood was still to be shed. The confirmation of the new covenant was by a cup of wine; because under the New Testament there is no further shedding of blood, Heb. xii. 26. x. 18. Again, our Lord says of the cup, “ This cup is the New Testament in my blood ;" in the same way as the cup of blood in the Levitical law (Exod. xxiv. 6.) was the Old Testament in my blood. There all the articles of that covenant being read over, Moses took half of the blood and put it in basons, and sprinkled all the people with it, and said, “This is the blood of the covenant which God hath made with you ;” and thus that old covenant or testimony was established. In like manner Christ, being now about to bring in another and more perfect dispensation, having published all the articles of the new covenant, confirms it by the breaking of bread, saying, “ This is my body in the New Testament, or covenant, in the same sense as the paschal lamb has been hitherto my body in the old dispensation, Eat ye all of it.” He then takes the cup, saying, “This is my cup in the new covenant, in the same sense as the blood of bulls and goats have been my cup in the old covenant, Drink ye all of it; having your hearts sprinkled from an evil conscience," Heb. x. 22.
The legal sacrifices were but types and shadows of the true Christian-sacrifice ; and were, therefore, with their feasts, constantly renewed and repeated : but now that Christ, as a lamb without blemish, and without spot, fore-ordained before the foundation of the world, (1 Pet. i. 20.) has been sacrificed for us, there remain no more typical sacrifices, but only the feasts upon the One Great Sacrifice, which are still, and ever will be, symbolically continued in the Lord's Supa per. “He that eateth my flesh, and drinketh my blood, dwelleth in me, and I in him," John vi. 5, 6.
There are still many other resembling circumstances between the Jewish Pas, sover and the Christian Eucharist. The Passover was of divine appointment, and so is the Eucharist. The Passover was a sacrament, and so is the Eucharist. The Passover prefigured the death of Christ before it was accomplished the Eucharist represents, or figures out, the death now past. As he who in the Jewish law did not keep the Passover, bore his own sin, and was to be cut off from Israel, Exod. xii. 15. Num. ix. 13. so he also who neglects the Holy Eucharist in the Christian dispensation, renounces all interest and benefit in the atonement and sacrifice of Christ, and shall also bear his own sin. As the Passover was to continue as long as the Jewish law was in force, so the Eucharist is to continue till Christ shall come to judge the world. The same forms and expressions were likewise observed in both institutions.
In the paschal supper the master of the house took bread, and gave thanks to God; so did Christ. It was customary for him afterwards to break it, either before or after the benediction, and to distribute it to his family, as it does not appear they were permitted to take it themselves. That these forms were ob
Mark xis. 28
and they all drank of it.
And he said unto them, This is my blood of Mark xiv. 24. the new testament, which is shed for many.
served by our Lord is evident. In the same manner, at the paschal feast, the master was accustomed to take a cup of wine, pronouncing a blessing over it; so likewise did Christ. In both cases the blood was a token or sign of the covenant entered into between God and man, which was at once ratified by pouring out the blood of the lamb, and by feeding on the flesh of the sacrifice. "If ye know these things, happy are ye if ye do them."
It is far beyond the limits of a note to enter into the various interpretations of Scripture given by the Socinian and Papist, in defence of their peculiar errors, As the doctrine of transubstantiation, however, the principal error of the latter, is founded on the words, “This is my body," I would wish to direct the attention of my readers to the true scriptural signification of this passage, which the Romanist interprets literally, and the Protestant figuratively.
To find out the meaning of any passage in Scripture, our only safe plan is, to make the Scripture its own interpreter, that is, to examine in what sense similar modes of expression, with that under discussion, are used in the sacred writings. In the present instance we must recollect our Lord spoke a dialect of the same language in which the Old Testament was written. If we discover therefore parallel expressions in the Old Testament to that which is now used by our Lord, we are warranted, by all the rules of criticism, to interpret the latter in the same manner as we interpret the former. Both are to be literally, or both figuratively interpreted.
The Hebrew, Syro-Chaldaic, and Aramaic dialects, have, generally speaking, no word which expresses,“ to denote," "to signify," "' to represent." The inspired writers of the New Testament, following the idiom of the Hebrew language, al. though they wrote in Greek, abounded with expressions derived from the language of their country. Even in our own language, although we have terms enough to fill up the ellipsis, the same form, or idiom of speech, is common. Suppose a man, on entering into a museum, enriched with the remains of ancient Greek sculpture, has his eyes attracted by a number of curious busts, and on inquiring what they are, he learns, that this is Socrates, that Plato, a third Homer ; others Hesiod, Horace, Virgil, Demosthenes, Cicero, Herodotus, Livy, Cæsar, Nero, Vespasian, &c. Is he deceived by this information ? Not at all: he knows well that the busts he sees are not the identical persons of those ancient philosophers, poets, orators, historians, and emperors, but only representations of their persons in sculpture; between which and the originals there is as essential a difference as between a human body, instinct with all the principles of rational vitality, and a block of marble. Innumerable instances are found in Scripture where this manner of speaking is observed. In Gen. xlv. 26, 27. it is said, “ The seven kine are (i. e. represent) seven years." “ This is (i. e. represents) the bread of affliction." "The ten borns are (i. e. signify) ten kings,' Dan. vii. 24. “ They drank of the spiritual rock which followed them, and that rock was (i. e. represented) Christ,” 1 Cor. x. 4. In Rev. i. 20. “ The seven stars are (i. e. represented) the angels of the seven churches : and the seven candlesticks are (i. e. represent) the seven churches." In Matt. xii. 38, 39. “ The field is (i. e, represents) the world : the good seed are (i. e. repre