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language of the Quakers, it is Christ. It is that celestial Principle which gives light and life to as many as receive it and believe in it. It is that spiritual Principle which was in the beginning of the world, and which afterwards took flesh. And those who receive it are spiritually nourished by it, and may be said to sup with Christ; for he himself says,
6 Behold I stand at the door and knock. If
my the door, I will come in to him, and will sup
with him, and he with me *" This Supper, which Jesus Christ enjoins, is that heavenly manna on which the Patriarchs feasted before his appearance in the flesh, and by which their inward man became nourished, so that some of them were said to have walked with God; for these, according to St. Paul, “ did all eat the same spiritual meat, and did all drink the same spiritual drink; for they drank of that spiritual Rock that followed them, and that Rock was Christ t.”
This Supper is also “ that daily bread," since his appearance in the flesh; or, as the * Rev. ii. 20.
+ i Cor. x. 3, 4. 2 D
old Latin translation has it, it is thať supersubstantial bread, which Christians are desired to pray for in the Lord's Prayer ; that bread which, according to good commentators, is above all substance and above all created things : for this bread fills and satisfies. By extinguishing all carnal desires, it leaves neither hunger nor thirst after worldly things. It redeems from the pollutions of sin. It so quickens, a's to raise from death to life; and it gives therefore to man a sort of new and divine nature, so that he can dwell in Christ and Christ in him.
This Supper, which consists of this manna, or bread, or of this fiesh and blood, may be enjoyed by Christians in various ways. It may be enjoyed by them in pious. meditations on the Divine Being, in which the soul of man may have communion with the Spirit of God, so that every
meditation may afford it a salutary supper, or a celestial feast. It
may be enjoyed by them when they wait upon God in silence, or retire into the light of the Lord, and receive those divine impressions which quicken and spiritualize the internal man. It may be en
joyed by them in all their several acts of obedience to the words and doctrines of our Saviour. Thus may men every day, nay every hour, keep a communion at the Lord's table, or communicate, or sup, with Christ.
The question then is, IVhether Jesus Christ insti
tuted any new Supper, distinct from that of the Passover (and which was to render null and void that enjoined at Capernaum), 10 le ol'served as a ceremonial by Christians ? - Quakers say that no such institution can be collected from the accounts of Matthew, or of Mark, or of John—the silence of the latter peculiarly impressive in the present
It appears then that there are two Suppers recorded in the Scriptures; the one enjoined by Moses, and the other by Jesus Christ.
The first of these was of a ceremonial nature, and was confined exclusively to the Jews; for to Gentile converts, who knew
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nothing of Moses, or whose ancestors were not concerned in the deliverance from Egyptian bondage, it could have had no meaning
The latter was of a spiritual nature. It was not limited to any nation. It had been enjoyed by many of the Patriarchs. Many of the Gentiles had enjoyed it also. But it was essentially necessary for all Christians.
Now the question is, Whether Jesus Christ, when he celebrated the Passover, instituted any new Supper distinct from that of the Passover, and which was to render null and void (as it is the tendency of ceremonials to do) that which he enjoined at Capernaum, to be observed as an ordinance by the Christian world? The Quakers are of opinion that no institution of this kind can be collected from Matthew, Mark, or John. St. Matthew* mentions the celebration of the Passover-supper in the following manner: “And as they were eating, Jesus took bread, and blessed it, and brake it, and gave to his disciples, and said, Take, ear, this is my body.
* Matth. xxvi. 26.
“And he took the
gave thanks, and gave it to them, saying, Drink
all of it.
“ For this is my blood of the New Testament, which is shed for many for the remission of sins.
“ But I say unto you, I will not drink henceforth of the fruit of the vine, until that day when I drink it new with
St. Mark gives an account so similar to the former, that it is unnecessary to transcribe it. Both mention the administration of the cup; both, the breaking and giving of the bread; both, the allusion of Jesus to his own body and blood; both, the idea of his not drinking wine
any inore but in a new kingdom :--but neither of them mentions any command, nor even any insinuation by Jesus Christ to his disciples, that they should do as he did at the Passover-supper.
St. John, who relates the circumstance of Jesus Christ washing the feet of his disciples on the Passover-night, mentions nothing even of the breaking of the bread, or of the drinking of the vine, upon that occasion.