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247

THE COMMUNION.

measure the teachings, the blessings, and the promises
of such a Mediator by the rules we apply to things that
are obedient to laws, according to which Heaven and
earth remain widely separated, and can never be brought
near each other, except by this bond of spiritual com-
munion. We should rather expect that whatever flows
from this great fact, should not only proclaim the fact a
miracle, but should itself possess a miraculous character.
So with the Lord's Supper. It is not merely to renew
the memory of the fact of expiation, but it is the fact
itself which is to be renewed in the believer. In this
sacrament he gives himself anew to me, not I myself
to him. As redemption was conditioned by his bodily
life and sufferings upon this earth, so is the Lord's Sup-
per not only spiritual food for the soul, but a food both
Heavenly and earthly, by which we become his, and he
ours, in a perfect union. In the sacrament is Christ
entire ; the instructor, the redeemer, the sufferer, and
the conqueror ; the crucified and the risen, the son of
Mary and the Son of God, the first not less than the
last. While in every other ordinance, sometimes the one,
and sometimes the other, stands out the most promi-
nent, in this sacrament both are united in one, and are
conjointly received by us. Without the bodily presence
of Christ in the Lord's Supper, redemption becomes a
fact in time, which lives on only in faith ; it has entirely
left the kingdom of the earthly, and has ascended into
the kingdom of the spiritual ; while, on the contrary,
it should also survive, on its earthly side, in the holy
communion, not only because Christ still lives in the
soul of the believer, but because he is himself actually
present to the communicant. For his living on in our