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TRANSUBSTANTIATION.
ty
-_v_,4. _A;m vMi

A LECTURE,
BY THE REV. A. MCAUL, D.D.

52mm ihition.

I?
f.
g.
\a

TRANSUBSTANTIATION.

A LECTURE,

BY THE

REV. ALEXANDER M'LCAUL, D.D.,


BECTDR

OF

THE

UNXTED

PARISHES

OF

ST.

MAGNUS

THE

MARTYR.

ST. MARGARET, NEW FISH-STREET, AND 81. MICHAEL, CROOKED


LANE, AND PREBENDAXIY OF ST. PAUL'S.

mmn Ehitinu.

LONDON :

WERTHEIM AND

MACINTOSH,

24, PATERNOSTER now.

1850.

/;

MACIXTOSH, PRINTER,
GREAT SEW-STREET, LONDOS.

A LECTURE.*

ISAIAH XLIV. 15.


YEA, HE KINDLETH IT, AND BAKETH BREAD; YEA, ms: 1
MAKETH A GOD, AND wonsmrrn'rn 11*.

IF the Jewish rabbi at. Constantinople should send us


an invitation to embrace Judaism, our duty would be
to thank him for his concern for our spiritual welfare,
and at the same time inform him, that we had good
and sufcient reasons for believing the truth of the re
ligion which we profess ; but if he should send a mes

_ senger to make a public call upon all Christians to


turn to Judaism as the only true religion, we should
consider it necessary as publicly to give our reasons
for refusing to comply. We should say, rst of all, it
is impossible for us to embrace the oral law, because it
requires us to renounce the evidence of our senses.

It requires us to believe whatever the rabbies may be


pleased to assert : and not to hesitate, even should
they afrm, that our right hand is our left, and our
k' * One of a course of Lectures, delivered in 1837, in reply to
those preached by Dr. Wiseman.

A2

left hand our right.

Now this, we should say, is

beyond the control even of our will. With the best


will in the world, it would be impossible, unless we
could prevail on ourselves to renounce eye-sight and
sense; we cannot, therefore, believe in the oral law.

The rabbi might reply: The evidence of your senses


is nothing to the purpose ; we have got the true doc
trine handed down from father to son, through all
generations, from the time of Moses ; whatever, there
fore, a rabbi asserts, must be true, and you are bound
to believe him rather than your senses. We should
prepare to follow him, and to show that the rab
binical pretensions to an unbroken line of tradition
are utterly unfounded ; but should rst say, Then you
confess that you cannot prove, nor get us to believe,
that Judaism is true, unless we rst take leave of our
senses. That admission is, in itself, a sufcient reason

for refusing to believe in Judaism. Then, after proving


that Judaism is as much opposed to tradition as it is to
common sense, we should last of all appeal to the Word
of God, and show that if the Bible be a Divine reve
lation, Judaism must necessarily be false. Now that
which we have supposed the rabbi at Constantinople

to do, the Church of Rome has actually done. She has


sent a public message to us to embrace Romanism;
our duty, therefore, is, publicly to assign our reasons
for declining her invitation ; and this is, I apprehend,
the object of the present course of sermons. Certain
doctrines of the Church of Rome have been selected as
contrary to common sense, to tradition, and to Scrip
ture. This evening, the subject is, the doctrine of
4

5
transubstantiation; and I propose, by the help of God,
to show you
I. That it is contrary to the evidence of our senses;
II. That it is contradicted by tradition; and

III. That it is expressly opposed to the plain de


clarations and the general analogy of holy Scripture.
That we may not be guilty of any misrepresentation,
I shall begin by reading the authorized Roman state
ment of the doctrine, as propounded by the Council of
Trent. It is as follows : Inasmuch as our Re
deemer, Christ, said, that that which he offered under

the species of the bread, was truly his body; there


fore the Church of God has ever been in the persua
sion, and it is now again declared by this holy synod,
that, by the consecration of the bread and wine, a con
version is made of the whole substance of the bread
into the substance of the body of Christ our Lord, and
of the whole substance of the wine into the substance
of his blood, which conversion has, by the Holy Ca
tholic Church, been conveniently and properly called

Transubstantiation. (Sess. xiii. cap. iv.) At the end


of the preceding chapter, that council also declares,
that The whole and entire Christ exists under the
species of the bread, and under every part of that
species; and also under the species of the wine, and.
under its parts." Further, that council has decreed,

that If any one deny, that in the Sacrament of the


most Holy Eucharist are truly, really, and substan
tially containedthe body and blood, together with the
soul and divinity, of our Lord Jesus Christ, and there

fore the whole Christ; but say that he is only in

6
it as in a sign, or gure, or virtue; let him be ana'

thema. . (Canon 1.) And further If any one


say, that in the Holy Sacrament of the Eucharist,
Christ, the only-begotten Son of God, is not to be
adored with that worship called latria, even the ex
ternal worship; and, therefore, not to be venerated

either in a peculiar festive solemnity, nor, according to


the laudable and universal rite and custom of the Holy
Church, to be solemnly carried about; or, that it is
not to be held up publicly to the people, in order to
be adored, and that its adorers are idolaters ; let him

be anathema. (Ibid. Canon 6.)

Such is the Roman

Churchs doctrine of Transubstantiation, of which we


have airmed that it is contrary to the evidence of the
senses, and therefore false. The alleged miraculous
change of the whole substance of the bread into esh,
and the whole substance of wine into blood, is pre
cisely of that sort which comes within the sphere of
our senses cognizance; and God Himself, in His
Word, as well as by the reason which He has given us,
.sends us in such cases to the ve senses forinformation.
When He sent Moses to announce to Israel his Divine
mission, He gave him power to substantiate the truth
of his claims by a direct appeal to the evidence of their
senses. He enabled him to cast his rod upon the
ground, and the people saw that it became a serpent.

If they doubted their eye-sight, they could stretch


forth their hands, and employ another sense to obtain
satisfaction. In like manner Moses Was empowered
to put his hand into his bosom, and draw it forth c0

vered with leprosy; and again, by a similar act, to

7
restore it to a healthy state.

The peoples eyes were

to be the judges of the reality of the change. Moses


had the power also to effect a change very similar to
that alleged in Transubstantiationnamely, to take
the water of the river and turn it into blood.
But would the people have been satised if the
water had still continued to appear as water, and
to possess none of the properties of blood, either
in appearance, taste, smell, or touch? There are
many similar instances in Scripture) but we have
not time to notice them all. It is suicient to say,
that faith in the great facts on which our religion is
founded is made to depend on the evidence of the
senses. When St. Peter wished to assure those to
whom he wrote of the reality and certainty of the

transguration, he is directed by the Holy Spirit to


appeal to the evidence of his senses as to testimony
which cannot be overturned. He says, We have not
followed cunningly devised fables, when we made
known unto you the power and coming of our Lord
Jesus Christ, but were eye-wihwsses of his majesty.
For he received from God the Father honour and
glory, when there came such a voice to him from the
excellent glory, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am
well pleased. And this voice which came from heaven
we heard, when we were with him in the holy mount.

(2 Peter i. 1618.)

Here St. Peter builds his argu

ment, and wishes those to whom he writes to build


their faith, upon the evidence of the eye and the ear,
* The conversion of the water into wine, at Cane, is a case
exactly in point.

and evidently implies that if this evidence had been


wanting, the narrative of the transguration would
have been nothing better than a cunnineg devised
fable. St. John grounds his testimony to the Lord
Jesus on the same evidence: That which was from
the beginning, which we have heard, which we have
seen with our eyes, which we have looked upon and
our hands have handled, of the Word of life. Sight,
hearing, touch, are St. Johns great witnesses. The
Lord himself also, to prove the reality of his resurrec
tion, calls upon the doubting disciples to trust to the
testimony of their senses. Behold my hands and my
feet, that it is I myself : handle me and see; for a

spirit hath not esh and bones, as ye see me have.


(Luke xxiv. 39.) Here, then, our Lord himself gives
us a right to appeal to our senses, and to base our con
clusion upon their evidence. When the Church of
Rome asks us to believe that, under the species of the
bread and wine, there is a real Christ, we obelehrists
command'to the disciples, Handle me and see: for
bread and wine hath not esh and bones, as ye see me
have ; and being informed by our senses that there
is none of the attributes either of esh or blood, and

all the attributes of bread and wine, we reject the


doctrine.
The appeal to the senses is altogether fatal to the
dogma, which is in every particular directly contrary
to their testimony. At the original institution, the
doctrine was contrary to the evidence of the apostles
senses. According to the Roman doctrine, the-bread
which Christ held in his hand, and which the apostles

9
put into their months, was identical with the Lord
himself, so that the apostles would have been called

upon to believe that Christ and the thing which he


held in his handChrist, who stood before their eyes,
and that thing which they tasted in their mouths,
were all one, though their senses testied that they
were not one, but two, di'erent in form, dierent in
dimensions, different in attributes, and different in
place. In this case, our Lords appeal, Behold my
hands and my feet, that it is I myself, would have
been impossible. The doctrine is equally repugnant
to the evidence of our senses at present. It says that
a wafer is the very body and blood of the Lord that
was born of the Virgin Mary. I behold it, and can
see none of the properties of esh and bloodI handle
it, and can feel noneI smell it, and can perceive none
--I submit it to the palate, and can taste none. Four
out of my ve senses testify against it, and the Lord
Jesus assures me that the evidence of my senses may
be depended upon: I therefore reject the doctrine.

Again, the Church of Rome tells me that each species


is a whole Christthat, therefore, as there are not
two Christs, but one, that the wafer which I see in
the priests hand, and the wine which I see in the cup,
are one and the same thing. Nay, if I take the wafer
or the wine, and divide it into a thousand parts, it calls
upon me to believe that there is not a thousand, but
only one, and that each part is the whole, though my

senses testify to the contrary.

If, therefore, any

reliance is to be placed on those senses which God


created and gave me,and Christ and his apostles say
A 3

10
that their testimony is decisive,-the doctrine of tran

substantiation is false.

Itherefore say to the Church

of Rome, as I should to the rabbi who asks me to believe

that my right hand is my left, and my left hand my


right, I cannot embrace your doctrine without giving
up the evidence of my senses ; and if I do thatif I
admit that they may be so grossly mistakenI shall
have no warrant whatever for believing the main facts

of the Christian religion, for their reality depends al


together upon the evidence of the senses. The Church
of Rome replies, You are not to trust to your senses ;
you are to hear the Church ; and the Church has

always held the doctrine of transubstantiation. We


answer, Well, then, you fairly give up the senses which
God has given you. You confess that, if you are to
prove, and we are to believe, the doctrine of the
Church of Rome, the rst step must be for us both to
take leave of our, senses ! A noble religion this, which
begins by levelling us with the beasts that perish, or
even by sinking us beneath them,"I and which, if con
sistently followed out, would put an end to all know
ledge, and introduce interminable confusion ! But as
the Church of Rome thinks herself more secure in the
tradition of the Church, we follow her to that argu

ment, and say


II. That faith in Transubstantiation is contradicted
by tradition of the Church.
Though we could not believe any alleged fact on the
* It may also be fairly urged, that if we are to hear the
Church, we must depend upon the sense of hearing, which we

cannot do if the evidence of the senses is not to be trusted.

11
evidence of tradition, where that tradition is contrary
to the present testimony of our senses, yet we admit
that universality of tradition is a strong argument.
We have always found that every one appeals to an
tiquity where he can, and that no one shrinks from the
testimony of the ancient Churches, but those who know
that that testimony is against them, and whose only

hope consists in making Christianity the mushroom


Ospring of a day. The Church to which we belong
has no reason for fearing an appeal to antiquity, and,
least of all, so far as the doctrine of transub
stantiation is concerned. But we appeal to the
universal testimony of the Churches, not simply
because it is favourable to our cause, but because

the apostle directs us to do so, and blames those


who, like the Romanists, are so self-conceited

as

to imagine that they are the sole proprietors of truth.


To such persons the apostle says, What ? came the
word of God out from you? or came it unto you

only? (1 Cor. xiv. 36.) In which words he evi


dently implies, that we are not to be satised with our
own individual opinion, but to take the sense of all the
Churches to whom the word of God came.* This,
then, let us do, and it will appear that the doctrine of
transubstantiation is as contrary to tradition as to com
mon sense. Our forefathers have provided us with the
means of doing so, in anadmirable treatise, entitled,
* Compare the 32d verse, where he says, God is not the
author of confusion, buty of peace, as in all the churches of the
saints 3 and again, 21'. 16, But if any man seem to be con

tentious, we have no such custom, neither the churches of G

12
A full View of the Doctrines and Practices of the
Ancient Church, relating to the Eucharist, from
which I will read you some extracts, to show that the
fathers did not believe that, after the consecration, the

elements lost their real nature.

Justin Martyr calls

them bread and wine; for, telling us of the bishops

praying and giving thanks over the elements, he adds,


that the deacons give totevery one present leave to
take of the bread and wine of the euclzarz'st.1'
Cyprian 'says, We have found that it was a mixed
cup which our Lord offered, and that it was wine which
he called his blood.1
Macarius says, In the church is offered bread and
wine, the antitype of his esh and blood; and they

that are partakers of the visible bread do spiritually


eat the esh of the Lord.
Chrysostom says, For as, before the bread is con
secrated, we call it bread, but when the grace of God,
by the priest, has consecrated it, it has no longer the
name of bread, but is counted worthy to be called the
Lords body, although the nature of bread remains in
'it, and we do not say there are two bodies, but one
body of the Son; so here, the divine nature being

joined to the body, they both together make one Son,


one person, 8m.
Theodoret, in his dialogues, speaks equally plainly,
saying, He would have those that participate the
divine mysteries, not to attend to the nature of those
a things that are seen, but, upon the changing of the
* London, 1688.
f Apol. 2.
I Epist. ad Caecilium, l. 2. Ep. 3. alias 63.

Hem. 27.

13
names, to believe the change that is made by grace.
For he that called his body, that is by nature, wheat
and bread, and again, termed himself a vine, he
honoured the symbols with the appellation of his body
and blood, not altering nature, but to nature adding
grace. *
These are only a few specimens of individual writers;

but what will you say if I bring forward the testimony


of a Pope to show you transubstantiation was not the

doctrine of the ancient Church ? Pope Gelasius, who


ourished at the close of the fth century, says ex
pressly, that after consecration, the bread remains
bread, and the wine remains wine. His words are,

The sacraments of the body and blood of Christ


which we take, are surely a divine thing : for which
reason we become by them partakers of the divine
nature ; and yet the substance or nature of bread and
wine does not cease to be ; and, indeed, the image and

likeness of the body and blood of Christ are celebrated


in the action of the mysteries, 8w. ; from which it is
evident that Gelasius knew nothing of the change of
the whole substance of the bread into the body, and

the whole substance of the wine into the blood.

He

believed, as we Protestants do, that the nature of the


bread and wine remains. Here, then, we might safely
close the whole argument, and say, Pray tell us, whom
are we to believe? If the Pope Gelasius be right,
then the modern Roman Church is wrong. If the
Church of Rome be right now, then Gelasius was an
heretic, and what becomes of Papal infallibility ? \Ve
i" A Full View, 8:42, pp. 9399.

x .._V M ~11, :zw-tv.


NT;_;A_>~

14
might, therefore, safely say to those who invite us to
join the Roman communion, G0, rst, and settle the
matter with Pope Gelasius, and then come and let us
know the result, and we shall take your doctrines into
consideration.
But perhaps there never was made a more daring
attempt to impose upon the simple than the endeavour
to pass off transubstantiation as an ancient and gener
ally-received doctrine. Not only was it unknown to
the fathers and to the Pope Gelasius, but even so late
as the year 831 it was received as'a novelty, when Pas
chasius Radbertus published his treatise on the subject.
The ablest men of the time wrote against it, and the
celebrated Rabanus Maurus, Archbishop of Mayence,
does not scruple to call it an error. In a letter of his,
still extant, he says, As for the question you put, whe
ther the eucharist, after it is consumed and sent into

the draught, as other meats are, does return again into


its former nature, which it had before it was conse
crated on the altar ? this question is superuous, when
our Saviour himself has said, in the gospel, Every

thing that entereth into the mouth, goeth into the


belly, and is cast out into the draught? The sacrament
of the body and blood is made up of things visible and
corporeal, but effects the invisible sanctication both

of body and soul.

And what reason is there, that

what is digested in the stomach and sent into the


draught should return into its pristine state, seeing
none has ever asserted that this was done? Some,
indeed, of late, not thinking rightly of the sacrament of
our Lords body and blood, have said that the very

15
body and blood of our Lord, which was born of the
Virgin Mary, and in which our Lord su'ered on the
cross, and rose again out of the grave, is the same that
is taken from the altar, WHICH ERROR we have opposed
as we were able, writing to the Abbot Egilo, and de
clared what ought truly to be believed concerning the
body itself.* From this letter, then, it appears that

towards the middle of the ninth century the doctrine


of transubstantiation was so far from being the uni
versal faith of the ' Church, that it was regarded both
as a novelty and an error. An Archbishop, one of
the most learned and considerable men of his time,

knew nothing of it, and felt it his duty to write against


an innovation so erroneous.
The Saxon Church here, in England, was equally
ignorant of transubstantiation. In a homily that used
to be read publicly on Easter-day, the nature of this
sacrament is explained at large, but in a manner
entirely opposed to the modern doctrine of Rome, as
may be seen from the following short extract 2 Mosesv
and Aaron, and several others of the people that

pleased God, ate that heavenly bread, and did not die
that everlasting death, though they died the common
death. They saw that the heavenly food was visible
and corruptible ; but they understood that visible
thing spiritually, and they tasted it spiritually. Jesus
said, Whoso eateth my esh and drinketh my blood,
hath eternal life : He did not command them to eat
that body which he had assumed, nor to drink that
* Epist. ad Herib. in Appendioe ad Reginonem, p. 516, as
citedin the FullView, &c., p. 189.

ix

16
blood which he shed for us,- but by that speech he
meant the holy eucharist, which is spiritually, his
body, and his blood. And again, in an epistle to
Wuline, Bishop of Shyrburn, the author of the

Homily says, The eucharist is not the body of


Christ corporally but spiritually : not the body in which
he suffered, but that body when he consecrated bread and
wine for the Eucharist, the night before his passion,
and said of the bread be blessed, This is my body ;
and again of the wine he blessed, This is my blood,
which is shed for many for the remission of sins. Now
then understand, that the Lord who was able to change
that bread before his passion into his body, and that
wine into his blood, spiritually : that the same, by the
hands of the priests, daily consecrates bread and wine
for his spiritual body, and for his spiritual blood.*
These extracts plainly prove that the doctrine of tran
substantiation was unknown to the old Saxon Church;

and when we remember that that Church received its


doctrine chiey from Rome, we may safely infer, that
the Church of Rome itself was then ignorant of its
present doctrines; so that the Roman Church is so far
from holding the ancient faith of the universal Church,
that it does not even retain its oWn ancient doctrine.
This inference might be further conrmed by con
sidering the alterations that have been made in the
ancient liturgies. But the canon of the mass, even as
it now stands, is sufcient to prove, that when it was
originally drawn up, the doctrine of transubstantiation
was unknown. For instance, after the mention of the

r " Full View," &c., pp. 182188.

17
Holy Host, oered to God, the priest says, Upon
which vouchsafe to look, with a propitious and serene
countenance, and to accept them, as thou wert gra

ciously pleased to accept the gifts of thy just servant


Abel, and the sacrice of our patriarch Abraham, and
that which thy high priest Melchiscdek offered to thee,
a holy sacrice and unspotted victim.* Now, where
the doctrine of transubstantiation is presupposed, this
prayer is perfectly absurd. That doctrine supposes
that the very body, blood, soul, and divinity of Christ,
are offered up ; and, consequently, this prayer entreats
that the body, blood, soul, and divinity of Christ may

be as acceptable as the rstlings of the ock offered by


Abel,
or the ram
offered
by Abraham,
the by
untran
isubstantiated
bread
and wine
brought or
forth
Mel
chisedek. Who is there that does not see that such a
petition is very little short of blasphemy, inasmuch as
it implies, in the rstpplace, that it is a matter of doubt
whether the sacrice of Christs body, blood, soul, and
divinity, may be acceptable; and expresses, secondly,
that if it be accepted, it is not more acceptable than
the sacrice of a sheep, or of real bread and wine?
Such monstrous inferences plainly show that this
prayer was composed when the faith of the Church
was, that the consecrated elements were symbols of
the body and blood of Christ, and might, therefore, be
put into one category with the sacrice of Abel, and
the bread and wine of Melchiscdek, which were also
symbols of the same.
* ICimon 0f the Mass, p. mvii., in the Roman Missal for
the use of the Laity.

London: Keating and Brown.

l8
' The words that follow lead to the same conclusion.
The priest says, We most humbly beseech thee,
Almighty God, command these things to be carried to
thy altar on high in the sight of thy Divine Majesty,
8:0. Here we ask, What things are to be carried to
the altar on high? If the bread and wine were
intended, we could understand the plural, These
things ; but transubstantiation says, that under the
species of the bread and wine, only one thingnamely,
the whole Christis intended? Why, then, is the one
whole and entire Christ called these things? We
ask, secondly, how can the hands of the holy angels
carry up to heaven that which is in heaven already, if
the whole Christ be intended! If transubstantiation_
be true, this prayer is absurd; whereas, on the sup
position that the elements retain their true nature, it
would be intelligible. The canon of the mass, there
fore, even as it now exists, is a witness against the
doctrine of transubstantiation.

The Church of Rome,

therefore, gains nothing by forsaking the testimony of


the senses to appeal to antiquity. She has no unbroken
chain of tradition to bring forward in support of this

doctrine.

On the contrary, .the fathers are against it;

one of the popes is against it; the controversies of the


ninth
against
the isSaxon
Church
is
againstcentury
it;vthe are
canon
of theit;mass
against
it. All
testify that transubstantiation is a novelty; and that
the Roman Church has departed from the true and
ancient Catholic faith.
Having shewn, then, that the doctrine of transub

19
stantiationis contradicted by universal tradition, we
now come to prove

III. That it is directly opposed to the Word of God.


The Church of Rome, feeling that she cannot appeal
to the senses, and that an appeal to antiquity is fatal
to her doctrines, is very glad to betake herself to

Scripture, and to try and prove to us that the sense of


the written word is in her favour. Of the passages to
which she appeals, the rst which we shall consider is,
the sixth chapter of St. Johns gospel. Our Lord
there says, Except ye eat the esh of the Son of
man, and drink his blood, ye have no life in you.
\Vhoso cateth my esh, and drinketh my blood, hath
eternal life; and I will raise him up at the last day.

For my esh is meat indeed, and my blood is drink


indeed. Here the Church of Rome supposes that
these and similar passages refer to the Eucharist only;
and, secondly, that they are to be taken literally.
There is not time now fully to discuss the whole
chapter, but a few short arguments are sufficient to
overthrow the Roman interpretation. In the rst
place, if the words, Whoso eateth my esh, and
drinketh my blood, hath eternal life, and I will raise

him up at the last day, signify the eating of the


consecrated wafer, then it will follow that men may
be saved without either faith or works. All that the
most ungodly indel has to do, is, to procure a con
secrated wafer, and eat it, and he hath eternal life.
It is not necessary to believe in transubstantiation, or

any other doctrine of the Church of Rome. A man


may live in open disobedience to her,he may be a

20

Turk, or a heathen,--it makes no matter, if he can


only lay hold of a consecrated wafer and eat it. Nay;
not only an ungodly man may have eternal life, but
any of the brute creation. We should be sorry to
speak of any religion with levity, but the Romanist
writers themselves suppose that the body and blood of
Christ may be swallowed by a mouse, a dog, or a hog ;
and if so, then, according to the literal sense, these

animals have eternal life, and must be raised up at the


last day. Now this conclusion, legitimately following
from the Roman interpretation, is absurd; for Christ
says, Whosoever believeth not, shall be damned;

that interpretation must, therefore, be false.


Again, if the words Except ye eat the esh of
the Son of man, and drink his blood, ye have no life
in you --are to be taken literally, the cup is absolutely
necessary to salvation. Without the cup, it is im
possible, literally, to drink his blood. To swallow
down a man whole, would not be to drink his blood.

And if the Roman Church stand out for the literal


sense of esh, and blood, and eat, she must
not take drink guratively. If we cannot be

saved unless we literally cat the esh of Christ,


neither can we unless we literally drink his blood, and
for this the cup is absolutely necessary. Such is the
doctrine even of the Roman Canon law as regards the
priest. It says, the priest ought not to receive the
body of Christ without his blood."* The authority
given is that of Pope Gelasius to the Bishops Ma~

joricus and John.

The Pope having heard of certain

" Decret. Part 111., De eonsecratione, Distinct. II. c. xii.

21

persons who received a portion of the body, but


abstained from the cup, commanded that they should
either receive the whole sacrament or be wholly ex
cluded, because a division of one and the same
mystery cannot take place without great sacrilege.
This was felt so strongly by Cardinal Caietan, that he
argues with great earnestness to show, that these
words of our Saviour do not deliver a precept of eating
and drinking the sacrament of the eucharist. * The
Church of Rome must, therefore, choose between the
literal and gurative interpretation.
If the latter,
then transubstantiation is not proved; if the former,
then not one single layman of the Roman Church has
been or can be saved; for, as they do not get the cup,
they cannot drink Christs blood. If, therefore, the
Roman Church be in the right, the laity must renounce
all hope of salvation. These arguments are, in them
selves, suicient to overthrow the Roman interpreta

tion of this passage; we therefore proceed to the words


of institution.

Our Lord said, Take, eat; this is

my body. And again, This is my blood of the New


Testament, which is shed for many for the remission
of sins. Here, again, the Roman Church contends
for the literal interpretation. Now let us grant, for a
moment, that the literal is the true interpretation, and

see what the\Church of Rome will gain by it.

The

literal meaning of this is my body, excludes every


thing else but body. When a man says, this is my
body," he does not mean, this is my soul. The
* Comment. on ver. 53, as quoted in An Answer to the
Seeker, p. 8.

22
words of consecration would, therefore, turn the bread
into his body, and his body only. The blood, soul,
and divinity, would, therefore, be wanting; and con
sequently three parts of transubstantiation. In like
manner, the words, This is my blood, if they are to
be taken literally, necessarily exclude the body, soul,
and divinity. The doctrine of concomitance will not
help. Either the words are to be taken literally, or
they are not. If they are, then This is my body
means, this is my body, and nothing else; and This
is my blood, means, this is my blood, and nothing
else.

If she chooses the letter, she must abide by the

letter, and then three-fourths of transubstantiation are


wanting. Again, if the literal sense is to be taken,
the wine is not transubstantiated at all, but the cup in

which the wine is.

Our Lord said, This is my blood

of the New Testament. If we ask to what the word


this refers, St. Luke in his Gospel, and St. Paul in
his First Epistle to the Corinthians, both tell us, that
it refers to the cup ; for they say, Likewise also the
cup after supper, saying, This cup is the New Testa
ment in my blood. Not one word is said about
the wine; so that if we are to abide by the letter, the

Roman doctrine of the conversion of the whole sub


stance of the wine is false. Not the whole substance
of the wine, but the whole substance of the cup, is
converted into the whole substance of the blood, and
consequently the Roman doctrine of transubstantiation
is false. The only way of escape from this conclusion
is, to take a gurative sense, and then the cause of
Rome is lost. But, further, if the literal sense is to

23
decide, neither the cup nor the wine is turned into the
blood of Christ, but into'the New Testament. St.
Luke and St. Paul both say, This cup is the
New Testament in my blood. If this be literally
true, then the cup, after consecration, is the New
Testament, and not the blood of Christ; and as in no
case the wine is mentioned, it, must remain wine.

Thus it appears that the literal interpretation of the


words is of no manner of use to the Church of Rome;
it is as far removed from the doctrine of tran
substantiation as the gurative sense.
But this doctrine is contrary, not only to the literal
sense of these words, but to the general declarations of

the New Testament.

The Church of Rome says that,

after the consecration, the uid in the cup is not wine,


but blood ; and yet our Lord says expressly that it is
wine :- I say unto you, I will not drink henceforth
of this fruit of the vine, until that day when I drink

it new with you in my Fathers kingdom. (Matt.


xxvi. 29.) To prevent all mistake, he calls it the
fruit of the vine. In like manner, the apostle says,
that the bread after consecration is still bread. The
cup of blessing, which we bless, is it not the commu

nion of the blood of Christ?

The BREAD which we

break, is it not the communion of the body of Christ ?

(1 Cor. x. 16.) And again, For we being many are


one bread, and one body; for we are all partakers of
that ONE BREAD. (ver. 17.) And again, For as
often as ye eat THIS BREAD, and drink this cup, ye do
shew forth the Lords death till he come." (1 Cor. id.
26.) And again, Wherefore, whosoever shall eat

24
THIS BREAD, and drink this cup of the Lord, unwor
thily, shall be guilty of the body and blood of the
Lord. (ver. 27.) And again, But let a man ex
amine himself, and so let him eat of that BREAD, and
drink of that cup. (ver. 28.) Here the apostle, not
once, but ve times, says, that the consecrated bread is
still BREAD.

His apostle ?

Are we, then, to believe our Lord and

Or are we to say that both were mis

takenthat both used incorrect language? Either


the Church of Rome is in error, or Christ and His
inspired apostle are in error. But if we say the
latter is impossible, then the former is true, and
the doctrine of Transubstantiation is false.
Further, the Trent interpretation is contrary to the
general usage of Scripture language. The Bible is
full of language exactly similar to the words, This is

my body.

For instance, in explaining the chief

butler's dream, Joseph says, The three branches are

three days. And again, The three baskets are


three days. (Gen. x1. 1219.) No one has been
so absurd as to imagine that a transubstantiation took
place. Again, Joseph says to Pharaoh, The seven
good kine are seven years; and the seven good ears
are seven years. And again, The seven thin and
ill~favoured kine that came up after them are seven
years; and the seven empty ears blasted with the east
wind shall be seven years of famine. (Gen. xli. 26,
27.) The language of our Lord is precisely similar.
He says to the apostles, Ye are the salt of the

earth. Ye are the light of the world. (Matt. v.


l3, 14.) He says of Himself, I am the door. (John

25

x. 9.)

I am the vine. (John xv. 5.) But who

ever imagined that the apostles were literally turned


into salt, or into 1ight,--or that our Lord was tran
substantiated into a door or a vine? If, (then, the
general usage of Scripture language, and of our Lords
language, be of any value in the interpretation of a
particular passage, the doctrine of transubstantiation
is unfounded.
But this doctrine is not merely contrary to principles
of interpretation, it is contrary to acknowledged facts.
Christ said, Ye have the poor always with you: but
me ye have not always. It is, therefore, a fact that,
as to his bodily presence, Christ isnow absent from his
Church ; but, according to the doctrine of transubstan
tiation, a Romanist may always have Christ with him.
He need only procure a consecrated wafer, and, when

it putries, another, and then he may always have


Christ, though the Lord himself asserts the contrary.
In like manner, the psalmist and the apostle tell us,

that the body of Christ is to remain in heaven until his


second advent. The former says, Sit thou at my
right hand, until I make thine enemies thy footstool.
(Psalm cx. l.) The latter says, Whom the heavens
must receive until the time of the restitution of all
things.

The Roman Church, on the contrary, says,

that his body is to be found in every part of the world.


Again, it is the faith of the Church, and was preached
by St. Peter, that the body of Christ is incapable of
corruption. Thou wilt not leave my soul in hell,
neither wilt thou suffer thine Holy One to see corrup
tion. (Acts ii. 27.) The Church of Rome, on the

26
contrary, holds that this body may return to corruption.

Aquinas says, Seeing the body of Christ always


remains in the sacrament, till the sacramental species
are corrupted, it follows, that even wicked men do eat

the body of Christ. Such is the Roman Christ, my


brethren. It may turn to corruption, but our Lord
Jesus Christ cannot see corruption. He liveth and
abideth for ever, and is the same yesterday, to-day, and
for ever.
But the most serious objection against the doctrine
of transubstantiation still remains ; and that is, that it
makes Christianity identical with the idolatry denounced
in the prophets. According to this doctrine, every
objection which they urged against heathenism may
now, with equal force, be applied against Christianity.

In the text, the prophet Isaiah shows the absurdity of


heathenism by saying of the idolater, that He kindleth
it, and baketh bread ; yea, he maketh a god, and wor
shippeth it. Now, let every man of common sense
decidewhether this is not an equally correct descrip
tion of the consecrated wafer.
The maker of the
wafer, like the idolater, rst kindles a rethen he
bakes breadthen, by consecration, he makes it a God

-a,nd then he falls down and worships it: where is


the difference? In like manner, the prophet Jeremiah
says of idols, They are upright as the palm tree, but
speak not : they must needs be borne, because they
cannot go. Be not afraid of them ; for they cannot do
evil, neither, also, is it in them to do good. (Jerem.

x. 5.)

Now is not this just as true of that wafer which,


* As quoted in the Full View, p. 131.

27
according to the Church of Rome, is the whole body,
blood, soul, and divinity of Christ, and which they

worship as God? The wafer cannot speak ; it must


needs be borne, for it cannot go.

It cannot do either

evil or good. And again, consider what Isaiah says:


They bear him upon the shoulder, they carry him,
and set him in his place, and he standeth: from his
place shall he not remove: yea, one shall cry unto him,

yet cannot he answer, nor save him out of his trouble.


(Isaiah xlvi. 7.)

Is not this, again, an accurate ac

count of that which the Roman Church worships, as


God ? They carry him about, and where they set him
down, there he must abide, and cannot defend himself
against the depredations of even a mouse, a dog, or a
hog. Far be it from me to speak of any ones religion
with levity. But the supposition that the God of the
Roman Church may be carried away by one of these
beasts is not mine. It belongs altogether to the Roman
writers. Aquinas says: We must say, that although
a mouse or a dog should eat a consecrated host, yet the
substance of Christs body does not cease to be under
the species, so long as the species remain. And,
again, Alensis says, If a dog or a hog should swallow
a whole consecrated host, I see not why nor how the
body of our Lord would not, together with the species,
be conveyed into the belly of that dog or hog." Shall
I, then, acknowledge this poor thing, that may be the
prey of a dog, a mouse, or a hog, and that must ulti

mately be the food of worms, as my god ?


down and worship it?

Shall I fall

Shall I, with all these divine

See page 132 of A Full View," 6w.

28
descriptions of the absurdity of heathen idolatry, be
guilty of the very same folly, and expose myself to all
the wrath denounced in the divine declaration ? No ;
I cannot. What was absurd, foolish, and sinful in the

heathen, is doubly so in a Christian, and therefore a


doctrine which identies Christianity with the heathen
ism described by the prophets, cannot be true. To
conclude, then, I tell him who invites me to enter into
communion with the Church of Rome, that I cannot,

for her doctrine of transubstantiation is contrary to the


evidence of the senses. It is unwarranted by the uni
versal tradition of the true Catholic Church, and it is
directly opposed to the plain declarations of Scripture.
It is contrary to the literal and to the gurative inter
pretation of the particular passages alleged. It is
contrary to the general doctrine of Christ and his
apostle, respecting the sacrament. It is contrary to
the general usage of Scripture language. It is con
trary to the Scripture assertions respecting the incor
ruptibility and place of Christs body. It is contrary
to all the attributes of Deity, and agrees with Scripture
only in its descriptions of heathen idolatry. It is
impossible, therefore, for us to embrace Romanism.
Ifthere are any members of the Roman Church present,

I would entreat them not to think that our desire is to


wound their feelings. Far from it. A public call has
been made upon us to submit to the dominion of Rome;
and thus a necessity has been laid upon us to give, as

publicly, our reasons for refusing to hearken to it. If


you ask us to become Roman Catholics, we must tell
you the reasons which prevent us; and it is for you to

29
consider whether, after hearing those reasons, you will
still continue in her communion. Use the reason which
God has given you. Search into the universal tradition
of the Church. Examine those Scriptures to which she
appeals, and we condently expect that you will ulti
mately unite with us in protesting against her errors.
To the Protestants who are here, I would say, Think
not that, in renouncing the doctrines of Rome, you
have done the whole of your duty. It is possible in
words to renounce Popery, and yet, in deeds, to defend
and exalt Papery. The Church of Rome is now making
a grand attempt to recover her lost dominion ; her
adherents are moving heaven and earth to promote her
objects ; and I mention this not to blame them ; far
from it; I honour the consistency, the zeal, and the
activity of the Romanists. They, believing that they
are in the right, and that all means are lawful, are only
doing what they are persuaded is their duty. I men
tion these things only to shame and confound those who
call themselves Protestants, who profess that Romanism
is idolatrous, and yet who give all their inuence and
their power to pull down the truth, and to exalt Roman
error. Such men are enemies to the cross of Christ.
. It matters little what you may call yourselveswhether
it be Evangelical, Independent, or Baptist, or anything
else ; it matters little whether you be members of Bible
Societies, or Missionary Societies; as Christs minister,
it is my duty to undeceive you, and to tell you, that so
long as you are the aiders and abettors of the Roman
attemptsco-operators in the destruction of the true
religion, and in the establishment of Roman idolatry

30

you are enemies to the cross of Christ, your profession


of spiritual religion is a delusion, your attempts to
spread the Gospel amongst the heathen is an abomina
tion, you are the patrons of error, the persecutors of
truth, and, unless you repent, will ultimately be found
amongst Christs enemies. If the doctrines of the
Reformation be true, support, cherish, and defend them.
Live according to them yourselves, and use all your

inuence in preserving for your children that precious


inheritance which your forefathers purchased with
their blood, and left to you as a legacy more precious
than life itself.

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