3. Septr. 1693
1. Cor. 11. 25.
Saying, This Cup is the New-Testament in my Blood: This Do ye, as oft as ye drink it, in Remembrance of me.
We are upon the second part of the Lords Supper: The first treats of the Eucharistical Bread: The second of the Eucharistical, or sacramental Wine. We have spoken to the former, & are come to the latter, upon which an entrance was made the last Time. Christ did somthing, & said somthing, when he instituted the bread, in like manner, Christ said somthing, & did somthing when he instituted the Wine. For Christ had the same end in his appointing of the Wine, that he had in his appointing of the bread. And as in his instituting of the Bread, Christs speech comprised of two words, viz: A word of command, concerning the manner of using the Bread: Take: Eat: And a word of promise, concerning the Sealing of the Heavenly benefits represented by the Bread: This is my Body, which was broken for you. So here Christs speech in his instituting of the Wine consists of two words, viz: a word of Com̄and, & a word of promise. Let us begin with the first.
- 1. Here is a command, concerning the external action, & it is described. 26. Matth. 27. Drink ye all of it. Namely, All ye who come to, & sit down at, this holy Banquet. All ye who eat of the Bread, do ye also Drink of the cup. For Christs precious Blood was shed for the same persons, for whose sake his sacred Flesh was crucifyed. And in our text. This do ye viz: As ye see me do, Take the Cup, & Drink the Cup. Drink the wine out of it, & together therewith by Faith drink my Blood, represented thereby. Be ye assured that my Blood was shed & poured forth for you, & let this consideration, warm, cherish, revive, & refresh your hearts; & hereupon in hope of eternal life lift up your hearts, be united to me, & abide in me: And in testimony that you do so: Take this Cup & Drink this Cup.
- 2. Here is a word of promise concerning the good, or fruit of it. This is my Body which was broken for you: And this Cup is the New Testament in my blood. These words carry a promise in them. By this Bread, as by a sure & certain pledge, I do assure you that my Body was given unto Death for you, to obtain the pardon of all your sins: And by this Wine, as by a certain Witness & Sacrament, I do assure you that my Blood was offered up to God my Father, that thereby I might stablish & ratify the Covenant of Grace, of which I am the appointed Mediator; that so this price being paid for you, ye might be Reconciled to God, justifyed of God, & saved by God. When Christ sais This Cup is the New Testament, he means the same thing, as if he has said, this is my Blood. For that Covenant, or Testament (in which we have a promise of the pardon of our sins) is not without the Blood of the Mediator: for without that there is no Remission of sin. 9. Heb. 22. Nor had this Blood of the most innocent sacrifice respect to any sins, but the sins of others, viz: of those men, who were comprehended in the Covenant of Grace. Not for his own sins, but for others. 53. Isa. 5. 1. Pet. 3. 18. This Blood was Shed for the expiation & abolition of the sins of those taken into a New-Covenant the Covenant of Grace. Christ did pour out his Blood for us, for the pardon of our sins, both before his crucifixion, but especially on the cross, when it streamed forth (as it were) from all his veins for to Redeem us, & so to confirm the covenant of Grace, i.e. to fulfill that condition under which God entered into a Covenant with us. Now the condition of this Covenant was this viz: that Christ the Son of God as our Mediator should come between the offended God, & our selves, the offending persons, & make satisfaction for us to the wrath of God, that so the Father might exert & put forth his Love to us in the decree without wrong, or injury to his justice.
This therefore is the full sense of the words: This blessed wine of the Lords supper, which is in the Cup, is a Sacrament, by which mystically is declared, & firmly Sealed, & confirmed to you the covenant of grace, which is made in my Blood: And so it is a means of comunion in my shed Blood, & the benefits purchased by it; & so of that union to, & com̄union with, me, which you have by true faith.
Now this New Covenant is that free obligation of God, in which he promiseth us in the Mediator, the pardon of all our sins, the writing of this holy Laws in our hearts, or the regeneration of our Nature: And on the other hand, we by his grace, do promise to beleive on him, & to yield obedience to him. 31. Jer. 31. 32. 33. 8. Heb. 9. 10. 11. 12. This covenant is in our text called a Testament, because Christs death coming between, it was confirmed by that death as the Testatour. 9. Heb. 16.
This Cup is the New Testament, it is a Sacramental phrase. For the Cup. i.e. the Wine in the Cup, is not the Covenant or Testament it self. For the Covenant is Gods friendship; & the Testament is the will of Christ (the Testatour dying) concerning the pardon of our sins, & the salvation of our Souls, by his Satisfaction. Thus in the Lords Supper, this holy Sacrament, we have both the Covenant, & the Confirmatory pledge of it. This Cup is the New Testament, or New Covenant, i.e. it is a Symbol, or Signe of the New Covenant, or it is an Authentick instrument, or as it were a Roll, or Deed in which the New Covenant, & my last Will is written, & registred, & by which I bequeath unto all you that beleive, the good things, the blessed things, of a better life, of an eternal life. This Cup is not only a Signe of the Blood of Christ, nor only a Seal of it, as a Sacrament; but it is also the the very sanction, & confirmation of the New Covenant i.e. of the whole Gosple administration. By way of Use.
- 1. Use. This may give us some insight into the nature of the Sacraments, in that the Seals are called by the name of a Testament: because they are testimonies to us of the divine will, & serve to confirm it in our Souls. God deals with us, as we are wont to deal among our selves, viz: in weighty affairs, after a Solemn manner to enter into covenant one with the other. So here in the weighty affairs, of Eternal Salvation by a Redeemer, God is pleased for the confirming of us, to deal with us in a way of Covenant: Yea & to give us a deed of this Covenant written in the Blood of the Redeemer: Hince the Cup is called the New Testament, or New Covenant: because it is the very Sanction, Confirmation, & establishment of the New Covenant. It is as it were the Covenant it self, containing all the free, full, & blessed promises made to beleivers in Christ. After the breach of the first Covenant, God graciously enters into a New-Covenant with Adam, promiseth a Seed of the Woman i.e. Christ, who should bruise Satans head, crush that power, which had conquered the first Adam: Loe, here in this Ordinance we see this promise ratifyed: Here is the New Covenant set before us in large characters, written in the Blood of ye Redeemer. This is not only a Signe, & Seal, of the Covenant, but as it were the Covenant it self.
- 2. Use. Hince learn we that great veneration is to be paid to this holy Ordinance. The Reason is, because this is the New Testament, or this is the New Covenant. Oh Covenants among men are to be duly respected: but how much more the Covenant between God & man: Between the Creator, & the Creatures. Therefore
- 1. This holy Ordinance is not to be neglected. O this holy Ordinance is not such an indifferent thing, as many by their practises, in standing off from it Seem to imagine. Many dare not neglect praying, reading, & hearing; & yet too many dare neglect receiving. Why remember that in other duties, you do some things which the New Covenant requires: but in a right attendance upon this Ordinance, you do all. And dare you not omitt the lesser parts, & dare you without grief, sorrow, & mourning neglect the greater. If a Prince should enter into a gracious Covenant with Rebells, & requires many things, but enjoyn one thing mainly & especially by which that Covenant should be ratifyed & confirmed. Would men willing to have their Princes favour do the lesser things, the smaller things, & neglect the main & principall. Oh Remember, I beseech you, this is the Main, this is the very Covenant it self: And as you hope to be benefited by the New Covenant, see that you live not in the neglect of this great Ordinance, which being so full for the matter of it, our Redeemer calls it the very Covenant. This Cup is the New Testament.
- 2. Hince we may learn farther, that as this great Ordinance is not to be neglected, so it is not to be attended after any manner. It is a great Ordinance, & therefore not to be Slighted, & neglected: And because it is a great Ordinance, therefore it is accordingly to be attended. It is a sin to neglect & omitt attendance on it; & it is a Sin not rightly to attend upon it. It is a great Ordinance (the whole New Covenant, the Covenant of grace, is contained in it) And therefore the neglect of it is a great Sin: It is a great Ordinance, & therefore the not orderly attending on it is a great sin. The greater the duty, the greater the sin in omitting of it, & the greater the sin in the not duly attending upon it. So that I say this Ordinance calls for great Veneration, & Reverence: It is not to be neglected, nor is it after any manner to be attended, & celebrated.
- 3. Last: Hince we may see the difference between this Covenant, & humane Covenants.
- 1. This Covenant is confirmed by Death, but other covenants Death puts an end to them. Men may, & do frequently Covenant with one another, to do thus, & thus whilst they live, but they engage no farther: But now this Covenant is confirmed by Death & Blood of Christ. This Cup is the New Testament, or New Covenant in my Blood, viz: ratifyed, stablished, & confirmed by my Blood, 9. Heb. 7. 12. 13. 18. 19. 20. 21. 26. Matth. 28. 10. Heb. 29. 9. Zech. 11. 13. Heb. 20.
- 2. This Covenant gives the best good things at & after Death. Humane Covenants may profit men whilst they live, but when they are dead they have lost their efficacy. But now this Covenant profits both living & dying, but especially after Death. By this Covenant, whilst we live we have Grace, which is better than all worlds, but after this life we have Glory, which is grace in its perfection &c.
This do ye, as oft as ye drink it in Remembrance of me. These are the same words, we had before in Christs instituting of the Bread, & therefore may refer to the explication there given. The Summ is this. For this end do ye drink this holy Wine, viz: to revive your Faith, & to refresh your gratefull remembrance of my Blood poured out to purchase the pardon of your sins, & to procure the Sanctification of your Natures: So that henceforward ye
- 1. may live unto him, whom you see has died for you (1) Doe this. Do’nt leave it undone. You see I have taken the Cup, & drunk the Cup: This do ye: Do as you have seen me do
- 2. (2) Do it often. Not once or twice in a year, much less never in your whole lives but do it often. Be frequent in
- 3. attending this holy appointment, & ordinance (3) Last: Alwayes Remember me, when you do it. Remember my Love to you: See it in my Blood for you.
- 1. Use. Information in a Word or two.
- 1. Hince learn that both Bread & Wine is to be used at this Ordinance. Christ has instituted a double Signe in the Lords Supper, viz: Bread, & Wine, & it is altogether unlawfull for man to seperate them. 19. Matth. 6. Therefore to distribute the Bread, without the Cup, is to maim, & mangle Christs institution. For we hear the words of Christ, even as he commands us to eat the Bread, so he com̄ands us to drink the Cup. Now to follow one half, & to omitt the other half: what is it else but to make a Scorn & reproach of Christs præcept? To drive away the People from the Cup, which Christ commendeth to all his disciples, as is done under Popish Tyranny, who can defend it from Diabolical boldness? Who dare change, or abrogate this institution, & yet pretend they are acted by the Spirit? The good Lord rebuke them quickly for all their Blasphemies, & for this also among many others.
- 2. Hince learn, that it is matter of great thankfulness, that we live not only where this great Ordinance is to be had, but also where the first institution of Christ is so much held to, & contended for. We might have lived where there is no such ordinance attended; & so our souls perishing for thirst as David. 63 Ps. 1. Or we might have lived, where nothing is more abused than this great Ordinance; & so we daily exposed to some wofull breach for our disorder, as 1. Chr. 15. 13. O, I say thankfulness is do unto God on this account.
- 2. Use. Instruction, & Exhortation.
- 1. To All Christs Disciples to attend this great Ordinance. Drink ye all of it, sais Christ. 26. Matth. 27. This Do ye, sais our text. Take the Cup: Drink the Cup: This do ye. Do’nt leave it undone: Do’nt neglect it. If you live where you cannot do this: Where no such ordinances are attended: why then as David mourn for such wants, & thirst after the divine Ordinances. 63. Ps. 1. 1. Pet. 2. 2. But if you may have them, O do’nt live without them. Do’nt go out of the Lords house, & leave the Lords Supper behind you. Stay sais Christ, stay my Disciple, stop my friend: Is the Sermon over, O but there is somthing else behind calls for your attendance. Have you heard duty in the Sermon? O do’nt go away, & leave it undone. Did the Minister call upon you, & say to you, Do this? did he woo, beseech, & court you to do this? O friend the Ministers intreaties are my com̄ands. He pray’d you, he intreated you, Do this: O but I charge you, I com̄and you do this. May not the Master, command the Scholler? May not the Lord com̄and his Servant? Well then if you are my Schollers, if you are my Servants, give me leave to com̄and you; yea, & give me leave to expect your Obedience. I say do this: You say what you will: Flesh & blood say what it will: Satan & his Servants say what they will. I say do this: And this I say to every disciple of mine. And as you are my Sheep, I expect you hear my voice, 10. Joh. 27. And as you are my Disciples, I expect you keep my Commandments. 14. Joh. 15. If a King sais, Do this; Wo’nt you do it? If a justice of Peace sais Do this, Wo’nt you do it? Nay if a Constable, sais Do this, Wo’nt you Do it? And shall an earthly King, a Justice of peace, nay a Constable, an inferiour Officer’s, command have more force upon you than the Com̄and of your Saviour? O, I pray think of these things. It may be you’l goe out of the Meetinghouse by & by, & leave this great duty, this great Com̄and, of Do this undone. Well pray think with your selves then where you are, & what you are doing: And say, I am where I should not be: I am not where I should be. I should now have been in my Lords house, & at my Lords Table, & among my Lords Servants. He often said this day, Do this: & I was almost perswaded: Well, the good Lord pardon my hitherto neglects. I will stand out no longer; I will try whither the church doors are open to me: & if so, I will do this, for there I am com̄anded. 10. Lev. 12 13.
- 2. Exhort: To all communicants.
- 1. To Drink largely. 5. Cant. 1. Drink abundantly. I do not mean, that you should drink excessively of the wine, but that by Faith, you drink largely of that which is represented by it. Now you are at a Rich feast as 25. Isa. 6. I Eat & Drink, & be merry. By Faith Eat, & Drink largely of the Love of Christ. Now Faith should be much in Exercise: & by Faith we should Eat much of Christs flesh, & drink much of his Blood.
- 2. To add no more. We should do this often, & as oft as we do it in Rem̄brance of Christ
- 1. We are to do it often. Meals which are for nourishment must be often used. We often eat & drink for the nourishment of Nature; & so we had need for the nourishment of the new Nature. We often sin, & therefore we have often need of ye Blood of Sprinkling. We often contract guilt, & therefore we have often need of the Sealing of our pardon. We are often dull, & cold, & therefore have often need of being quickened & warmed & the like.
- 2. As oft as we do it, we are to Remember Christ: Remember not only his bloody Sweat in the garden, but also his bloody Sweat on the Cross, when all his veines gushed forth blood, that so a fountain might be opened for our sin & uncleanness. 13. Zech. 1. And all this with an affectionate, sorrowfull, thankfull, fiducial, sin-loathing, & adversary-silencing Remembrance; as has been touched before. So much at present.