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birds; we the body of God: they the dew of heaven; we the God of heaven"(9) Adv. Avaritiam, L. ii. p. 246. Edit. Paris 84.
S. NILUS,(-) G.C.
“ Before the prayer of the priest, and the coming of the Holy Spirit, the things laid on the table are common bread and wine; but after the solemn invocations, and the descent of the adorable spirit, it is no longer bread, and no longer wine, but is the body, and pure and precious blood, of Christ, the God of all.”(@) Ep. xliv. L. 1. p. 21.-“ Let us not approach to the mystic bread as to mere bread, for it is the flesh of God, the venerable, adorable, and lifegiving flesh.”(e) Ep. xxxix. L. iii. p. 322.
Avarice,” addressed to the Catholic Church, under the name of Timotheus ; besides some epistles. Baluze published them, together with the “Commonitorium” of Vincent of Lerins, at Paris, 1684.
(9) Nos Christum,-nos corpus Dei-nos Deum cæli.
(ro) St. Nilus was a disciple of the great St. Chrysostom. After having been governor of Constantinople, he retired into the desart of Sinah, and there led a solitary life. He flourished under the
emperors Arcadius and Theodosius, and died about 451. He has left us several treatises, and a great number of letters on religious subjects.
(ε) ουκ έστι ψιλον άρτον, και κοινον δινον τα επιτεθειμενα τη αγια τραπεζη, άλλ' σωμα, και αιμα τιμιον, και άχραντον Κριστε, το Θεό των απαντων. .
ως ψιλη αρτη προσερχωμεθα το αρτο το μυστικό, σαρξ γαρ υπαρχει Θεε, σαρξ τιμια, και προσκυνητη, και ζωοποιος.
GELASIUS,(2) L. C.
Having quoted Theodoret, I shall give a similar
passage from Gelasius, who is also writing against the same Eutychians :-“Certain sacraments of the body and blood of Jesus Christ, which we receive, are something divine, and render us partakers of the divine nature; but the substance or nature of the bread and wine ceases not to be. In the holy mysteries are celebrated the image and resemblance of the body and blood. Hence we are sufficiently informed, that what we believe, and celebrate, and receive under that image, we must believe to be in Christ himself. And as, by the operation of the divine Spirit, the things pass into the divine substance, though their nature retains its properties; so are we thus taught, that the mystery of the Incarnation consists in this, that the two natures remaining, there is but one Christ, who is one, because he is whole and entire."(-) Libel. contra Nest, et Eutych. ap. Baron. an. 496. T. vi. p. 665. Edit. Moguntiæ, 1601.
(u) St. Gelasius succeeded to Felix II. in 492, and held the Roman see about five years. He has left us several letters and treatises.
(*) The authenticity of this piece has been strongly contested; but let the decision be what it may, it is plain, that the words nature and substance, applied to the bread and wine after consecration by Gelasius, and the equivalent Greek words puois and ovora, used by Theodoret in the preceding quotation, mean not what, in their present acceptation, is understood by them. They both assert, that the bread and wine are changed into the body and blood of Christ; therefore, when they add that the nature and substance of both
THE SACRIFICE OF THE MASS.
Our Saviour, in leaving to us his body and blood, under two distinct species or kinds, instituted not only a Sacrament, but also a Sacrifice; a commemorative sacrifice, distinctly shewing his passion and death until he come. For as the sacrifice of the cross was performed by a distinct effusion of his blood, so is that sacrifice commemorated in this of the altar, by a distinction of the symbols. Jesus, therefore, is here given not only to us, but for us ; and the church is thereby enriched with a true, proper, and propitiatory sacrifice, usually termed the Mass : propitiatory we say, because representing in a lively manner the passion and death of our Lord, it is peculiarly pleasing to our eternal Father, and thus more effectually applies to us the all-sufficient merits of the sacrifice of the cross.
still remain, they must mean the external or sensible qualities. They may be seen and felt, says Theodoret, as before. The authors of the learned work, Perpétuité de la Foi, Vol. III., prove this by many examples drawn from ecclesiastical and profane writers, as well as from the obvious context of the passages themselves. Should it, however, be conceded, that there is an ambiguity in the expressions, or even that the authors of them meant to convey a sense, in our estimation, heterodox, how light must their authority be, when balanced against the massive evidence of so many writers of their own age and of the preceding centuries !
As the bloody sacrifices ordained by the Jewish law, are understood to have prefigured the sacrifice which the Redeemer of Mankind was once to offer on the cross, by the effusion of his blood; so do we believe that the unbloody offerings of the same law, but much more than these, the bread and wine, which Melchisedec," the priest of the most high God," presented to Abraham, (Gen. xiv.) were a type or figure of that unbloody sacrifice, which Christ, the priest for ever according to the order of Melchisedec, (Ps. cix.) would contiue to offer, through all ages, under the symbols or species of bread and wine.
Malach. i. 10, 11. I have no pleasure in you, saith the Lord of hosts, neither will I accept an offering at your hand.
- For from the rising of the sun to the going down of the same, my name shall be great among the gentiles ; and in every place incense shall be offered to my name, and a clean offering.—Matt. xxvi. 28. This is my blood of the New Testament which is shed for many") for the remission of sins.—Mark xiv. 24. This is my blood of the New Testament which is shed for many."—Luke xxii. 19. This is my body that is given for you :(9) do this for a commemoration of me.-20. This is the chalice, the New Testament in my blood, which is shed for you.—1 Cor. xi. 24. This is my body which is broken for you :(a) this do for the commemoration of me.-23. This chalice is the New Testament in my blood; do ye this as often as you shall drink it, for the commemoration of me.-26. For as often as you shall
(α) το υπερ υμων διδομενον.
(και) το υπερ πολλων εκχυνομενον. α) το υπερ υμων κλωμενον.
eat this bread, and drink this chalice, you shall shew the death of the Lord until he come.
According to the translation of these passages, which is conformable to the Greek, our Saviour speaks in the present tense (or time) of the actual immolation of his body, and the actual effusion of his blood for the remission of sins; because at that moment, he really, but mystically, offered up his body and blood for the salvation of the apostles and of all men; while the words, do this for a commemoration, or in remembrance of me, plainly denote the institution of a sacrifice to be celebrated to the end of time. Thus Christ seems to say: As I now immolate my body and shed my blood for the remission of sins; so do
up this same body and this same blood in remembrance of me.
What I now do, do you and your successors. In this sense, as we have seen, and shall see, have the words of Christ always been understood in the Catholic church.
1 Cor. x. 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21. Wherefore, my dearly beloved, fly from the service of idols.— I speak as to wise men; judge ye yourselves what I say.—The chalice of benediction which we bless, is it not the communion of the blood of Christ? And the bread which we break, is it not the partaking of the body of the Lord ?-For we being many are one bread, one body all that partake of one bread. Behold Israel according to the flesh : are not they that eat of the sacrifice, partakers of the altar ?-What then? Do I say that what is offered in sacrifice to idols is any thing? Or that the idol is any thing ?-But the things which the heathens sacrifice, they sacrifice to devils, and not to God; And I would not that you should be made partakers with devils.-You cannot drink the chalice of the Lord, and the chalice of devils; you cannot be partakers of the table of the Lord, and of the table of devils.