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suffers over again pain and death. No matter how com. plete the identification of the elenients with the Body and Blood of Christ, it is not to be supposed that Christ suffers crucifixion afresh whilst they are consecrated, or broken, or consumed. And yet it was the death of the animal offered which gave to the sacrifice its limited, typical, propitiatory value : just as it was the pains and death suffered by the Body of Christ, and the separation of the Blood from that Body by death, which constituted His Body the One Real Propitiatory Sacrifice.
The Holy Eucharist, then, has scarcely one feature in common with the things which in Scripture are called, and which English Christians commonly call, sacrifices.
The things offered in the Sacrament cost the offerer nothing. There is neither pain nor death suffered at tho time by the thing offered. It is not wholly consumed or destroyed in such a sense as to be lost to the offerer; nor is it partially destroyed, and the remainder consumed by the priests alone, as in the Levitical offering most resembling it in outward form.
Yet, notwithstanding all this, the Holy Communion possesses the most intense sacrificial reality. No sacrifice that ever was presented before God, in solemn worship of Jew or Gentilo, can come near it. No God-ordained offering of the old Law can, in the matter of sacrificial virtue or significance, be named beside it in regard of the one all-important element of ancient sacrificial worship, viz., direct reference to, and close connexion with, the One all-atoning Victim.
For the real spiritual value of the old sacrifices lay not in the costliness of the victim, nor in its death and the outpouring of its blood, nor in its consumption by fire; but it lay in the implied reference to the atoning Death of Christ which pervaded the whole transaction.
In the ages preceding the sacrifice of the Death of Christ, there was nothing which had anything like the close reference to it, or anything like the close connexion with it, which the Eucharist has--and that, too, by the express appointment and institution of Christ Himself.
May I ask the reader's attention to the following extract from a rolume of essays written by men supposed to entertain the highest Eucharistic doctrine consistent with adherence to the English Church:
In the strictest and most literal sense, 'expiatory sacrifice' there never was any but that which was begun in the upper chamber and finished upon the Cross ; 'priest' there never was nor could be any but Jesus Christ; nor altar,' save only the Holy Cross. Still, because they have an important connection with, and relation to, those grand and unique realities which can be expresscu in no other way, the Christian Eucharist being the solcmn memorial of the Sacrifice of the Cross, and the present exhibition of Christ's priestly intercession in heaven, is called a Sacrifice, its celebrant is called a 'priest,' and that whereon it is celebrated is called an • altar.' We Christians, as St. Paul says, “have an altar, whereof they have no right to eat which serve the tabernacle,' i.e., who, not believing in Christ, still clung to the worship of the Jewish temple -an altar more truly so than ever was any in the carnal Jerusalem, though dedicated with the slaughtered hecatombs of a Solomon.
And indeed,' as Bishop Cosin has well said, 'the Sacrament of the Eucharist carries the name of a Sacrifice, and the table whereon it is celebrated an altar of oblation, in a far higher sense than any of their former services did, which were but the types and figures of those services that are performed in rccognition and memory of Christ's own Sacrifice once offered upon the altar of the Cross.' (Bisliop Cosin's Notes on the Prayer Book, Second Series, Works, vol. v. p. 348.) We see, then, that the Ordinance of the Holy Communion, besides its aspect of blessing to ourselves as a means of feeding us with the spiritual fooil of the most precious Body and Blood of Christ, has another most important aspect as a solemn, the most solemn, act of worship towards Almighty God, the pleading before God for man of the che acceptable propitiation, in union with the perpetual presentation of Himself in heaven by the Man Cbrist Jesus, as onr solo acoeptable priest, the one Head of the redeemod
Respecting the flesh of no victim ever offered in old times were such words said as “ This is My body, which is given for you."
Respecting the blood of no victim was it ever said “This is My blood of the New Covenant, which is shed for you."
Previous to the Eucharist, no memorial of Himself was ever instituted by “God manifest in the flesh.”
So that, having regard to that ono thing which gave
family of God.”—Rev. P. J. MEDJ'S “ Essay on the Eucharistic Sacrifice.”
After an attentive perusal of the essay, the part which I have extracted above appears to me to give the very pith and marrow of the whole. Now, it is worthy of remark that a Dissenting (Wesleyan) review—the “Wesleyan Methodist Magazine”-in a severe article on these essays in general, has this remark upon this one in particular : “The doctrine of the volume is throughout that of the highest sacramental school, with one remarkable, and, indeed, astonishing exception. The only essay which contains a fairly Evangelical and a truly spiritual view of fundamental theology is that in which the Romanism of the book ['The Church and the World'] would have been expected to reach its height; that, namely, of the Rev. P. J. Medd, Fellow and Tutor of University College, Oxford, on the Eucharistic Sacrifice. Mr. Medd expounds this subject in a manner which, to a large extent, must command the approval of all spiritual and Evangelical Christians. He quotes two of Charles Wesley's hymns (Nos. 545 and 551) as fully expressing his own views respecting the Eucharist.” After much more in the same strain, and without a word of disapproval, the reviewer says, His (Mr. Medd's) theological exposition of the doctrine of the Eucliarist is essentially Protestant; certainly it is by no means Romanist,” &c., &c.—“ Methodist Magazine” for Nov. 1866, p. 1017.
I ask the reader to mark these words of the essayist and his reviewer; I am satisfied, after long and deep consideration, that there need be, in our Church at least, no difference of opinion on this weiglity subject, if men would but state clearly, unreservedly, and I must add, frequently, the precise sense in which they apply the term Sacrifice to the Eucharist.
the old offerings their spiritual value (viz., their reference to the Death of Christ), all the burnt-offerings and sacrifices which all the priests of Aaron's line ever offered, are, in the eye of faith, as nothing when set side by side with one celebration of the Eucharist.
The sacrificial character of the Eucharist depends on the words of our Lord, “ Do this in remembrance of Me,” and on the words of the Holy Spirit by St. Paul, “ As often as yo eat this bread, and drink this cup, ye do show the Lord's death till He coine.”
Let us consider what these words must be taken to
“Do this in remembrance of Me," must signify either, “Do this as a solemn public or Church commemoration of My death,” or “Do this as a means of reminding yourselves individually of what you owe to My death."
According to the first, our Lord instituted a solemn commemoration of Himself to be performed, before God and man, by the whole Church gathered together in its stated assemblies.
According to the second, He ordained, in fact, nothing more than an acted sermon-a mere means of publicly instructing or edifying individuals, who, by the use of certain types, were soverally to remind themselves of His death on their own private account.
The first of these views seems to be remarkably well expressed in the following passage :
“By commanding His Church to do this in remembrance of Him, He bids her, in truth, do that continually which tle did in the upper room, and which He Himself is ever doing in heaven. We believe that He is continually interceding for us at the right hand of the Father-presenting night and day before the mercy-seat His glorified Body, with all its wounds, and thereby reminding the Father of
have a proper
the one oblation of Himself, once for all offered upon
tho cross; and in the Holy Eucharist, the Church on earth joins in the memorial which He is making, and pleads together with Him the unspeakable merits of His Death and Passion.”—YOUNG'S “ Daily Readings,” vol. i. p. 438 (for Fourth Sunday in Lent).
The second of these views is well expressed in the words of a man who has, more than any other man, stamped his own character on the modern Evangelical party in the Church of England: “It is also here added, that as oft as they drank of that cup, they ought to do it in remembrance of Christ ; in order that the frequent recollection of His love, His sufferings, and their obligations to Him, might
their hearts and lives.”_THOMAS Scott's “Commentary on 1 Cor. xi. 25."
little consideration will show that anything like this latter gloss cannot be taken as coming up to the meaning of the words, “ Do this in remembrance of Me;" for there are many things which, far more directly than the Eucharist, answer the purpose of thus reminding us of Christ's death. The ordinance of preaching far more directly proclaims Christ Crucified as the sinner's only Hope. The reading of those Scriptures in which we have the account of His Crucifixion is far better calculated than the breaking of a morsel of bread to impress upon us how His love was stronger than death; for in them we have the extremity of His Sufferings, in His Agony, and in His endurance of desertion, shame, and contempt, simply but vividly set forth. The simple reading of Isaiah liji. would far more lucidly set forth the atoning, reconciling virtue of His Passion.
All this has been felt and practically acknowledged by the various sects which have denied, or lost sight of, the true sacrificial aspect of the Eucharist : and so amongst