THE MYSTERY OF FAITH
Regarding The Most August Sacrament And Sacrifice Of The Body And Blood Of Christ
Maurice De La Taille, S. J.
Book 1

The Sacrifice Of Our Lord


Contents

Abbreviations
Preface
Theses
Chapter 1: Of Sacrifice in General
Chapter 2: The Sacrifice Enacted In The Passion
Chapter 3 : The Offering Of The Passion Enacted By Christ In The Supper
Chapter 4 : The Partaking Of The Eucharist By Christ
Chapter 5 : The Sacrifice Of Christ Continued In Heaven
Endnotes


Abbreviations

A. H.—Analecta Hymnica Medii Aevi, ed. G. M. Dreves, S. J., and C. Blume, S. J., accedente H. M. Bannister, tom. 1-55, 1896-1915.

B.—Brightman, Liturgies Eastern and Western. Vol. I. Eastern Liturgies, 1896.

C. S. C. O.—Corpus Scriptorum Christianorum Orientalium, accurantibus L. B. Chabot, etc.

D. H.—Denzinger, Enchiridion Symbolorum, etc., IO, ed. Bann-Wart.

D. A. C.—Dictionnaire d'Archeologie chretienne et de Liturgie. Dom Cabrol et Dom Leclercq.

D. B.—Dictionary of the Bible, ed. J. Hastings.

D. T. C.—Dictionnaire de Theologie Catholique. A. Vacant. E. Mange-Not.

F. D.—Didascalia et Constitutiones Apostolicae, ed. Funk, 1906.

F. P.—Patres Apostolici, 2, 1901, Cd. Funk.

J. T. S.—Journal of Theological Studies.

L. B.—Le Brun, Explication .... de la Messe, 1777-1778.

P. G.—Patrologia Graeca, accurante J. P. Migne.

P. L.—Patrologia Latina, accurante J. P. Migne.

P. O.—Patrologia Orientalis. R. Graffin and F. Nau.

P. S.—Patrologia Syriaca. R. Graffin.

R.—Renaudot, Collectio lirurgiarum Orientalium.

R. S. R.—Recherches de Science Religieuse.

S. Th. I S.—St Thomas, Summa Theologica. 1st part.

T. a. S.—Texts and Studies. Contributions to Biblical and Patristic Literature. J. Armitage-Robinson.

T. U. U.—Texte und Untersuchungen zur Geschichte der altchristlichen Literatur. O. V. Gebhardt, Adolf Harnack, Carl Schmidt.


Preface

In this treatise I deal first with the sacrifice and then with the sacrament of the Body and Blood of the Lord, with the sacrifice offered by our Lord Himself before the sacrifice offered by us every day in our churches, with the Last Supper before the institution of the Mass. Hence I have inverted the usual order followed in the schools in treatises on the Eucharist. The reason for this will, I think, be plain when we consider how the communion is related to the sacrifice, and bow our Mass is related to what Christ did at the Supper before He said: Do this. I have simply followed the natural order, dealing first with what came first, and then with everything that followed therefrom in natural sequence.

It will cause some surprise that I have never of set purpose undertaken in any part of this work to vindicate the Real Presence of Christ in the Eucharist, but merely as occasion offered dispelled some shadow of difficulty arising from certain sayings of the Fathers. In explanation I may say that I did not intend to treat the Blessed Eucharist fully from every aspect, and having for the most part omitted apologetical matters, I turned to phases on which faith seeking knowledge would shed some theological light. Other greater reasons weighed with me against undertaking a work well and abundantly done by many great theologians. In the first place, the Real Presence of our Lord appeared to me to be quite sufficiently proven from the arguments advanced and sifted through the whole course of this book, particularly in what is written of the sacrifice of our Lord and the sacrifice of the Mass. Besides, it would be frivolous to deny the constant and firm faith of the Church in the Real Presence, even from the first century. Who accepts today the sophisticated exegeses of the sixteenth-century reformers? Even the Protestants, particularly those of the so-called liberal school, have eventually come to admit that the Real Presence is taught by the sacred writings, especially from the time of St Paul (as we shall see in its proper place). For the theologian this is enough: for the real sources of theology are the documents of divine revelation; to one who denies the authority of these documents the theologian as such has nothing to say, because theology is for believers. Sacred theology, however, having in mind the good of believers, is bound to solve difficulties advanced by an adversary who, "while believing nothing in things divinely revealed, brings difficulties against faith," (I S. 1, 8). Hence we have answered adversaries who, though interpreting rightly St Paul's mind, would have it that His mind was foreign to the mind of our Lord; we had also answered those who have maintained that, in the matter of our sacrifice, the teaching of the Church today is other than the teaching of the early Church.

In explanation of the doctrine, I have kept separate as a rule Scripture documents and the teaching of the Fathers or the Doctors of the Church. It may be thought that I have been prolix in my quotations from the Fathers, but I will be readily forgiven when it is remembered that the ideal of a theologian is not to advance His own special findings, but what He has actually gathered from the Fathers and Doctors. His purpose is to record them honestly, co-ordinate and refine them, and, where necessary, set them down in detail. At times I have presented the teachings and pronouncements of certain mediaeval theologians both of the East and of the West; they were not writers of the first rank; some, indeed, were tainted with heresy or schism. My object was, not to advance their teachings as authentic masters of the faith, but to show that they were historical witnesses of the teachings handed down to them by their predecessors of olden days. Meantime, that l have bestowed the highest encomiums on one or other of these writers, Nicholas Cabasilas, for example, need not be taken amiss. Had Cabasilas, in dealing with the unity of the Church, bestowed the care and skill that He showed in dealing with the sacraments of the faith, He would be above all praise. Hence Catholic theologians of former centuries are in no way culpable for praising what is good in what He wrote; rather they are to be commended, according to the phrase of Moses: O that all the people might prophesy, provided, as St Paul says, Christ is announced.

For I have written, not to dispute but to illuminate, not to sharpen my wits or to obtain praise for learning, but to build up the faith, that the knowledge of the faith may be enriched, to enable us to appreciate the full benefit of the gift of God: unto the praise of the glory of His grace, in which He hath graced us in His beloved Son. In whom we have redemption through the remission of sins according to the richness of His grace, which hath superabounded in us in all wisdom and prudence. That He might make known unto us the mystery of His will, according to His good pleasure, which hath proposed in Him in the dispensation of the fulness of times, to re-establish all things in Christ, that are in heaven and on earth, in Him (Eph. 16). For theology is a speculative science of revealed truth, but revealed in such manner as to aim at fostering piety. Hence St Paul calls it the acknowledging of the truth which is according to godliness (Tit. 11). Hence in theology there is no place for anything which does not foster piety. One must keep in mind, however, that though theology has to do with what is of the highest importance and value to our spiritual progress, it still remains a science. Indeed it is a science in the strict meaning of the word, an ordered group of knowledge, resting on its own principles, with all its parts connected and coherent among themselves, after the manner of an organic body. Hence no part of theology, no smallest portion of any province of theology, can be fully explored and solidly founded without reference to its corresponding part and corresponding member. Those who have scant knowledge of the argumentative method of theology scout this idea, as though it meant our becoming the victims of systems of theology. Perish, indeed, all such systems, which are, as Cardinal Billot says, "the ruin of theology" (Cardinal Billot, De Ecclesiae Sacramentis, I, 426). But a system and a body of doctrine are poles apart. A body of doctrine is certainly coherent, just as truth is coherent; no one element of it can be in opposition to another, and, if we are concerned with necessary elements, no one element can be sacrificed without the loss of another, so much so that you tear down the whole building, so to speak, if you remove a single stone. Such is the glory of truth at its summit, without admixture of any prejudgments resting on error.

A system, however, is quite a different thing. It is not deduced from the first principles of the branch of knowledge in question (such as are, in theology, the articles of faith), inferring therefrom manifold conclusions, from the complexus of which arises a new increment of knowledge, a new birth; a system is merely a hypothetical explanation of things impossible of demonstration; not having a principle of demonstration, it merely provides a form or mould for the elements in question, a mould formed and conceived by the mind artificially, by the help of which we can conveniently unite and co-adapt the elements according to our scheme. Such a systematic method is useful, even necessary in the physico-mathematical sciences, in which we merely investigate the quantitative relations between the measurable effects of natural agents, but do not investigate the essences of things and potencies; such quantitative relations are then given by convention symbolical expression such as is well suited to the end in view, according to time and circumstances. In theology the case is quite different: we ask ourselves, What properly is this, what in its intrinsic essence is this matter with which our faith concerns itself? There is no theology that does not reject systems; but theology does require an organic articulation and complexus of all the elements among themselves. If you find the latter in this book, know that I am quite unrepentant; I accept the imputation so gladly that I would go on to say that in my opinion, no part of the book could be completely understood by a reader who had not read the whole. And so, while I beg you, prudent reader, to pardon me for the many defects in the work before you, at the same time I earnestly ask critics not to condemn me unless first heard with toleration from the opening chapter to the conclusion.

Each smallest portion, as well as the whole work, I submit without reserve to the universal episcopate and to the Roman Pontiff.

Amiens, March 19, 1915, Feast of St Joseph.
The Author.

Post-Script

I had scarcely finished this work when I was summoned to a military camp as war chaplain. Thus I had no opportunity to study any interim writings. Still I must not omit here the learned discussion of Dom. R. H. Connolly, O.S.B., published in Texts and Studies, vol. 81 n. 4, and entitled The So-Called Egyptian Order and Derived Documents. From this work of Dom. Connolly it appears:

First: The opusculum (A), first written in Greek, the Coptic and Arabic versions of which (in lack of the original text) we had called Constitutiones Ecclesiae Aegyptiacae (or, for the other Ethiopic version, Constitutiones Ecclesiae Aethiopicae), and some notable parts of which are given in Latin in what are called Reliquiae canonum Apostolorum et Aegyptiorum by Hauler (Leipzig, 1900), and which opusculum we have often referred to in three forms, is nothing else than the Apostolike Paradisos of Hippolytus, which was formerly looked upon as lost.[1]

Second: From this work are derived what we call the Canones Hippolyti (B) compiled by a much more recent writer who corrupted and interpolated the text.

From these two facts it is inferred that the value and authority of A, which we have cited as indicating the Liturgy, not necessarily of the Church at Rome, but at least a Roman liturgy of the beginning of the third century, has been greatly enhanced; on the other hand, B, to which we have alluded only very rarely, is not a little lessened in authority.

After Dom. Connolly had arrived at His conclusions and independently confirmed them, He discovered that the same conclusions had been reached in 1910, and the results published in Alsace, by E. Schwartz, Ueber die pseudoapostolischen Kirchenordnungen, in Schriften der wissenschaftlichen Gesellschaft in Strassburg, n. 6.

As occasion arises, we shall note any other matters of importance derived from new sources.

From the Overseas Canadian Forces, Feb. 11, 1919, Feast of our Lady of Lourdes.

Translator's Note

This translation was made substantially from the second edition published in 1923, but with certain additions and emendations from the third edition published in 1929.


Theses

I. Latreutic and propitiatory sacrifice is due to God. The offering of Sacrifice may be really distinct from the immolation. The offering is to be distinguished from the acceptance by God and from human partaking.

II. The Passion of Christ was a sacrifice in the strict sense, lacking no element—visible or invisible—of a true sacrifice.

III. It can be shown from the Supper narrative that Christ as priest offered His Body to the immolation in blood of the Passion.

IV. The same can be shown from the comparison of the Supper narrative with the figures of the Mosaic covenant and the legal pasch.

V. The same can be shown also from the comparison of the Supper narrative with the teaching of the Epistle to the Hebrews on the priesthood of Christ according to the order of Melchisedech.

VI. Finally it can be shown from the comparison of the Supper narrative with the promise of the Eucharist.

VII. It is confirmed by three circumstances of the Supper.

VIII. The teaching of the Fathers and Theologians regarding the obligation of Christ to die is set in clearer light by the above doctrine.

IX. Conclusions may now be reached concerning the nature of the unity existing between the Supper and the Passion, between the apparent sacrifice of bread and wine and the real sacrifice of the Body and Blood of Christ; the agreement of the doctrine regarding the reality of the eucharistic sacrifice and that of the Real Presence.

X. It is illustrated from the history and teaching of the Council of Trent.

XI. It is highly probable that Christ Himself received the eucharistic food and drink at the Supper.

XII. The sacrifice offered by Christ at the Supper and actually given to God in the Passion received a certain consummation in the Resurrection and Ascension, and continues f or ever, as is clear from Scripture, the Fathers and Theology.

XIII. Connected with the victimhood of Christ is His eternal dignity as altar of the sacrifice.

XIV. Consistent with this is the dogma of the eternal intercession of Christ.

XV. From all this a conclusion can be reached as to various teachings regarding the heavenly sacrifice.

XVI. Christ instituted the Eucharistic rite to be celebrated by us.

XVII. Christ endowed the Eucharistic rite with the true character of a heavenly sacrifice to be offered by us.

XVIII. The Fathers of the first two centuries knew that we offer to God in our celebration of the Eucharist the Body and Blood of Christ.

XIX. The writings of the Fathers and Theologians of a later period prove copiously that we offer the Victim of the Passion in a sacramental commemoration of the Passion.

XX. Consequently, too, the Fathers teach that our eating of the Eucharistic Food is the partaking of the sacrifice in Blood.

XXI. Similarly, too, the Fathers and Doctors of the Church saw clearly that the heavenly sacrifice is offered to God in the Mass.

XXII. Consequently the Fathers understood that in the Eucharistic Communion we partake of the celestial sacrifice.

XXIII. Though Christ is the Priest of all our sacrifices, He does not elicit a new offering for each one of them.

XXIV. We fail to estimate rightly the Eucharistic sacrifice, if the Communion is included among the constitutive elements of the sacrifice, or if Christ is considered to be affected in our sacrifice with no intrinsic condition of victimhood, or if it is maintained that such a condition is given to Christ by our own sacrificial action.

XXV. We explain in what the fruit of the Mass, ex opere operato, consists; how it differs from the fruit of the sacraments ex opere operato; how it is limited.

XXVI. The Church holds the chief place among the offerers of the Mass, and her devotion is the chief regulative measure of the fruits of the Mass.

XXVII. The celebrant, the person giving a stipend, the faithful assisting, contribute cumulatively to determine the value of the sacrifice.

XXVIII. Hence we see how the fruit of the Mass may be computed, and what must be thought about the obligation of celebrating as many Masses as there are stipends received.

XXIX. The faithful in this life obtain the fruit of the Mass both by way of personal quest and by way of suffrage, the faithful departed by way of suffrage only.

XXX. The sacrifice cannot be offered by infidels or by any others outside the visible society of the Church.

XXXI. Nevertheless the sacrifice can be duly offered for all these while living; by way of suffrage, and can be beneficial to all of them respectively ex opere operato.

XXXII. It is lawful to make a special offering of the sacrifice for dead Catechumens, though it may not be so offered for departed non-Catholics, though (under certain conditions) these can be assisted by the offering of the Mass for the Dead in general. It can be offered specially and publicly after death for the repentant excommunicate who has been absolved from excommunication.

XXXIII. The Mass of a priest cut off from the Church, or unauthorised to offer the sacrifice, is fruitful, not however without the co-operation of the Church.

XXXIV. The sacrifice is accomplished by the Consecration alone. The Epiclesis does not effect the Consecration, nor is it necessary for it, though it has been wisely instituted and is appropriately placed in the Liturgy.

XXXV. St. Thomas rightly and justly held that in the Consecration of the Blood certain words annexed to those which demonstrate the Blood are part of the form. On the other hand, Scotus rightly taught, that apart from the formal words, other narrative words are required, without which the former would not have, on our lips, the true sense. But it is not plain whether, besides the formal words and the narrative, other, interpellative words are or are not necessary.


CHAPTER 1: OF SACRIFICE IN GENERAL

Before coming to the discussion of the sacrifice of the Body and Blood of Christ, some preliminary remarks on sacrifice in general are necessary. We shall consider first the latreutic, then the propitiatory character of sacrifice. Having considered the offering of sacrifice, we shall consider the partaking of the sacrifice.

§1. Sacrifice as Latreutic

The doctrine of sacrifice as latreutic is contained in two statements.[2]

First: Some kind of invisible internal offering of ourselves is due to God; this offering is of such nature that it cannot be given to any other being without very grave sin.

Second: This offering must be outwardly and sensibly signified.

First Statement

All beings are made to attain to God in the manner appropriate to the nature of each. But rational beings are superior to the rest. They partake of God by knowledge; indeed by the decree of God, if worthy, they will possess Him; and to this end they are inspired, helped, and drawn by God. Hence it is strictly in accordance with the dues and merits of the highest Goodness [3] (or of the first cause beyond which there is no ulterior end, since it is itself the ultimate end) that man should pay homage to His creator, His providential Guardian and source of happiness, with that interior cult with which it behooves Him to worship The Supreme Good, from which all good things come (while nothing is good unless directed to Him), and in whom, since He alone is good, is accumulated the one Goodness of all good things. Hence St. Thomas:

"Amongst other things which pertain to latria, sacrifice seems to have certain characteristics peculiar to itself .... ; external sacrifice is representative of interior true sacrifice, according to which the human mind offers itself to God. Now our mind offers itself to God, as to the principle of its creation, the foundation of its activities, and the end of its happiness. All this is applicable only to the highest principle of things. For it has been shown that the creative cause of the rational soul is alone the Most High God; and He alone can bend the will of man to what He wishes, as was shown above. It is clear also, from what has been said above, that in the fruition of Him alone the happiness of man consists" (3 C. G., par. 7).[4]

The first and the highest duty of man, therefore, is to hand himself over, to surrender, to submit himself to God; and the name latria is given to this duty.

Moreover, seeing that the divine Goodness is the diffusive principle of all the good conveyed to us, it is in accordance with the duty of latria that the benefits conferred on us by God should receive recognition by thanksgiving (eucharistia).

And further, seeing that this first Goodness is the one and only source whence the supreme good and all other goods leading up to its attainment may be hoped for, He who devotes himself to the pursuit of the supreme good expresses thereby His desire for God's help and God's gifts, all of which He may with more reason expect to receive, in so far as God does not allow Himself to be outdone in generosity. Hence the language of the saints:

"The more closely a man is united to God [5] the more generous He is to the supreme majesty, and the more generous also will be the benefits conferred on Him, and every day He will become more worthy of richer spiritual graces and gifts" (St. Ignatius Loyola, Constitution of the Society of Jesus, p. 3, c. 1, par. 22).

Impetration, therefore, namely, the securing of favours by petition, is implied too in all latria.

Second Statement

Taking our nature as it is, and in the present condition—wherein it is by the senses only, and the organs of sense, that man apprehends anything in His mind or performs any mental act—this essential duty of latria must be clothed in sensible rites; and these rites must be such as to express the supreme dominion of God, and our absolute dependence on Him. Thus St. Thomas says:

"Now because it was connatural for man to acquire knowledge through the senses, and most difficult for Him to transcend sensible things, provision was made for man by God that even in sensible things, a commemoration of divine things should be made for Him, thereby directing the mind of man to divine things with greater facility, man's mind being incapable of contemplating divine things in themselves. Hence also sensible sacrifices were instituted; these sacrifices man offers to God, not that God has need of them, but that man should be given to understand that He is under obligation to refer himself and all He has to God, as to an end, and as to the Creator, Lord, and Ruler of the universe" (C. G. 119, par. 1).

It is but just and reasonable, moreover, that both in body and soul, man should ratify and proclaim this unique relation of His to God—"that man should serve God with the whole being which He has from God, not only with His mind but also with His body," as St. Thomas says when treating of vocal prayer (2-2, 83, 12, c).

Furthermore, man is a gregarious animal, born for the companionship of His kind, and the Most High God is the Author, the Legislator, and the Consummator of this social relation. Hence our worship of God must be sealed with the social impress, and it can neither be social nor public unless ratified and given outward manifestation.[6]

Visible sacrifice therefore is in conformity with the psychological requirements of our present condition, the moral debt of our nature to God, and the social element of our make-up. Hence from every point of view it is man's duty, deeply immersed as He is, especially since the fall,[7] in sensible things, to pay worship to God in sensible things, and show by some exclusive form of external worship, chosen especially for the purpose, His reverence, His obedience and His striving towards God, as His unique First Cause, His omnipotent Ruler, His ultimate End. Peter the Venerable says very justly: "And when the world ceases to offer sacrifice to God, it will cease to be God's" (Tract. contra Petrobrusianos, P.L. 189, 793).

It is a crime and a sacrilege to offer sacrifice to any other than the true God, for this is to attribute to the creature the dignity of the Creator.

Apart, however, from that one special sign of divine honour, any other protestations of veneration or homage may be accorded to others besides God; for example, to the saints. St. Augustine says: "Christians celebrate the memory of the martyrs with religious solemnity .... . But though we build altars in memory of the martyrs, we do not build them to the martyrs. What bishop at the altar where the relics of the martyrs lie, ever said .... we offer to thee, Peter, Paul, or Cyprian? What is offered is offered to God, who crowned the martyrs, at the memorials of those whom He crowned .... Therefore we honour the martyrs with that worship of love and sympathetic association, with which even in this life, men of God are worshipped, men whose hearts we feel are prepared to undergo similar suffering in the cause of the truth of the gospel .... . But that worship which is termed latreia in the Greek, and for which the Latin language has no word, is a service proper to and due to the divinity alone; and with this we do not worship, and we teach that no one should worship, any other than the one God" (Contra Faustum, 1. 20, c. 21, P.L. 42, 384-385).

Thus, prompted by nature from the very dawn of His creation or taught by God Himself, man has been wont to give gifts and presents[8] to God, for this one end only—a protestation and an indication of His internal surrender, as appears in the offerings which Abel from His flocks dedicated to God, and Cain from the fruits of the earth.[9]The objects thus offered to God, as we see at a later period in the pouring out of oil, in the libation of wine, the loaves of proposition and so on, BECAME SACRED TO GOD; IN THIS SENSE THAT, SET APART FROM OTHER THINGS AND REMOVED FROM THE USE OF MAN, THEY WERE SO FAR WITHDRAWN FROM HUMAN OWNERSHIP, AS TO BE TRANSFERRED INTO THE PROPER AND (SO TO SPEAK) PERSONAL DOMINION OF GOD, TO BE, AS IT WERE. CONSUMED IN DIVINE USES.[10]

The term sacrifice was given to this offering from its intrinsic nature: "For sacrifice, " says William of Paris, "is a gift which is made sacred in the offering, and to offer sacrifice is essentially this, to make the actual gift sacred by the offering" (De legibus, c. 24. Opera omnia, Paris, 1674, t. l, p. 72). Clearly, therefore, without the actual HANDING OVER OF THE EXTERNAL GIFT, NO PRESENT ACT OF SACRIFICE IS MADE: although at the same time the most important constituent of sacrifice is not the external but the internal and invisible gift. In the light of all this we see how appropriate is St. Augustine's definition of sacrifice, a definition adopted by the scholastics, for example St. Thomas (2-2, 85, 2; 3 S. 22, 2, C. and passim), and also by the liturgists, like Durandus (Rationale divinorum officiorum, lib. I. cap. 9, n. 2). "Sacrifice therefore" says St. Augustine, "is the visible sacrament of the invisible sacrifice, that is, it is a sacred sign (Civit. Dei, 1. 10, C. 5. P.L. 41, 282).[11]This implies two elements: a sign, and a thing signified. Our internal surrender is what is signified; the sign which signifies it is the thing made sacred, that is the gift which we offer.[12] Each element is required by the integrity of true sacrifice; if there is nothing signified, the sacrifice is fictitious, it is a mere outward show; if the external sign is wanting, the sacrifice is improper in that it lacks an essential element of sacrifice.

But as truth, the negation of fiction, accrues to the sacrifice from the invisible element, we sometimes find in the works of St. Augustine, and after His time in the works of the earlier theologians, the expression true sacrifice used for the internal sacrifice: "That, " says Augustine, "which every one calls sacrifice, is the sign of TRUE sacrifice. Hence MERCY is true sacrifice" (Civ. Dei, 1. 10, c. 5, P.L. 41, 273). Hence "true sacrifice is every action done to bring us into holy union with God, referred to that good end in which we can be truly happy" (op. cit., L 10, C. 6, col. 283). Similarly William of Paris: "That true and general sacrifice which is first and before all else to be offered to God, and which God first and before all else requires, and without which He will not accept anything that is offered to Him, is each one of our own selves .... . The first and the principal sacrifice therefore which is required of us is ourselves; without this offering nothing that we offer to (God will be acceptable to Him" (op. cit., c. 28, p. 99-100). On the other hand, since the sign proper accrues to sacrifice from the visible element, later theologians have used the expression true sacrifice for external sacrifice.[13] However, it is customary with the Fathers to commend each element, and to teach that each element is found in true and proper sacrifice; so too with ecclesiastical writers. Thus Procopius, a very learned scholar and an enthusiastic exponent of patristic teaching, speaking on sacrifice in general, remarks that the Fathers "teach among other things, that it is part of our duty as victims, that men should inflame their souls with love, and so offer them as a gift to God" (In Leviticum, 2 fol. P.G. 87, 698), and St. Cyril of Alexandria, referring particularly to the sacrifice of the Christians, says: "For in our sacrifices, we to a certain extent immolate and offer our soul, AS IN AN IMAGE, to God, when we die to the world and to the wisdom of the flesh, when we mortify our vices and are, so to speak, crucified with Christ; and thus living a pure and holy life, we spend our days in submission to His holy will" (De adoratione in spiritu et veritate, l. II. P.G. 769)

In like manner, Eusebius of Caesarea, speaking of the glories of the sacrifice of the Mass, says: "We offer therefore a sacrifice of praise to the Most High God; we offer a sacrifice sealed by the divine Spirit, an august and sacrosanct sacrifice, we offer in a new manner a clean victim in sacrifice, following the New Testament. But a sacrifice to God is a contrite spirit. On the one hand, therefore, we make sacrifice and make a burnt-offering, when we celebrate the memorial of that great sacrifice, thanking God for our salvation, and offering to Him religious hymns and holy prayers; and on the other, when we consecrate ourselves wholly to Him and to His Pontiff (Who is the Word) : prostrate in body and soul immolated before Him" (Demonstr. evangel., 1. 1, C. 10. P.G. 22, 92-93).

Among the Latin Fathers the words of St. Gregory are equally clear. Speaking of the wonders of the sacrifice of the Mass He says impressively: "But when we celebrate these mysteries, we must immolate ourselves to God with a contrite heart; for we who celebrate the mysteries of the Passion of the Lord, should be an image of what we do. When we offer ourselves also as victims, then indeed there will be for us before God a real, true victim" (Dial., 1. 4, c. 59. P.L. 77, 428).[14]

Speaking of Christ's own sacrifice, St. Leo the Great says that the Cross was presignified by the prophets, as an altar where the OFFERING OF HUMAN NATURE WOULD BE CELEBRATED BY THE SAVING VICTIM" (Sermo 55, c. 3. P.L. 54, 324).[15]

Thus for the proper understanding of sacrifice as latreutic, we must distinguish, exactly as in the sacraments, between the sign and the reality. For the handing over of the external gift, though it is in itself res, that is to say it is real giving, is nevertheless not a res tantum; it is a res et signum. The offering of the internal gift is a res tantum. Later we shall inquire if anything is in sacrifice by way of signum tantum.

Meantime, be it noted that, just as latria itself has, as we have already seen, a eucharistic and impetratory character, so all sacrifice, in so far as it is symbolical of latreutic devotion, possesses the same twofold signification, as eucharistic and as impetratory.

§2. Sacrifice as Propitiatory

A. Vindication Of Sacrifices In Blood

We have seen that the obligation of sacrifice arises first of all from the duty of latria as such. We must now consider a second source of obligation, arising from the necessity of making atonement for the sins of men. This brings us to the propitiatory character of sacrifice. Man sinned and offended God, and thus became hateful to Him. It was therefore essential that any honour paid to God, and any gift offered to Him, should above all else show indications of sorrow as well as some kind of reparation and compensation; otherwise the gift offered and the goodwill made known would savour of contumely, as coming from one who was both unworthy and unfriendly. For just as the man who is without sin, when fulfilling the religious obligation of latria, declares that He is turned to God; so the sinner, turned away from God, contrary to right order, by His sin, must make reparation for the outrage to the divine justice that He is guilty of. The injury will not be forgiven, nor the evil undone, unless adequate compensation is made for the sin. The greater the intensity of love in the person converted to God, and turned away from sin, the more adequate will the compensation be. The greater the difficulty to be overcome—namely, the stronger the appetite (for a purely natural good) that has to be subdued, or the more arduous the task to be performed—the more intense will be the effort required. Thus also it comes about that not only is the guilt of sin wiped out by the compensation that has been made, but also the debt of punishment is cancelled by the satisfaction given.

Here there are two things which we must distinguish: the first is Propitiation in the strictest sense. By this, God is appeased and the balance of commutative justice is restored. The second is what is specifically called Satisfaction. By this, the punishment of the judge is anticipated, and the accused inflicts punitive justice upon himself. Hence the compensation we have been considering has two elements which are really distinct: one, propitiation, which is indemnitive; the other, satisfaction, which is punitive. But the one term, propitiation, is often used to cover both.

Clearly, then, death or pain from a motive of love plays a most important part in propitiation: for it is a fact that nothing is so repugnant to the natural appetite of man, even when free from sin, as suffering or death; hence there is no wider or nobler field of victory open to love (John, XV, 13; Philip., II, 8).

Moreover, seeing that sin in man implies, as a natural consequence, the immediate subjection of the spirit to the flesh, like a king driven from the throne by rebellious subjects, it was fitting that the flesh, the breeding ground of sin, should undergo real or metaphorical death in the eradication of sin. Add to this that every sin merits eternal death, but for the sinner eternal death begins with temporal death, as an integral part of the whole. Hence the Apostle: the wages of sin is death.

The attestation of repentance and the indication of reparation, therefore, could not be expressed by a more fitting rite than the slaying of an animal, and the shedding of blood, wherein as commonly estimated lies the life of the flesh.[16] Hence practically in every age and nation, sacrifices were offered in blood, as Scripture says: Without the shedding of blood there is no remission (Hebr., IX, 22).

There appears, then, to be no reason why we should attribute sacrifices in blood to the obligation of latria, saying, so to speak, that the destruction of life in itself pays honour to God. This is the teaching of those theologians who say that the Most High God, the supreme Lord of life and death, could not be perfectly honoured or worshipped without the deprivation of life and the infliction of death, but seeing that this was neither lawful nor becoming, the slaying of an animal was substituted. On the contrary, in itself, the destruction of the works of God, the loss of life or existence, gives no praise to God the Creator, the Ruler, and the ultimate End of all things; rather, in the words of king Ezechias, The living, the living shall give praise to thee (Is., XXXVII, 19). And Christ our Lord says: For He is not the God of the dead but of the living (Luke, XX, 38). Irenaeus (Adv. Haeres., 1. 4, c. 20, n. 7. P.G. 7, 1037) very wisely says: "The glory of God is living man. "[17] But where there has been sin, death of the flesh is exacted, not only as medicinal, but also as penal. Even now we are deserving of death. God threatened our first parents: Thou shalt die the death. And it was with this threat in mind that St. Paul said: The wages of sin is death.

Therefore, just as death, as penal, can and does accord with the justice of God, so too the sacrifice in blood satisfies the justice of God sacramentally or symbolically, that is to say it expresses the desire of making satisfaction, as far as lies in us, together with the added hope of assuaged justice.

William of Paris illustrates this well: "The second cause was the very vehement and very powerful emphasis of the plea for justice and mercy, which these sacrifices made. By the very act of offering and giving these animals over to death, men acknowledged that they themselves were deserving of death; and in this action, they expressly admitted, that did God will to judge them as their sins deserved, He could in justice inflict death on them. In the fact that the death of animals was commuted for the death they deserved men could read distinctly the mercy of God towards them" (op. cit., c. 2, P. 29).

We are now in a position to arrive at a conclusion touching the theological dispute: is destruction (formal or equivalent) of the offerings as such essentially necessary to constitute a true sacrifice? Where the primary and prevailing end is latreutic only, we hold that destruction is not necessary, that it is sufficient if, in the words of St. Thomas (2-2, 85, 3m), something is done over the offerings as evidence of their passing from the possession of man to the possession of God, which would be a pledge of the offering that we make of ourselves. In this we follow Suarez (De Eucharistia, disp. 73, s. 5, n. 4-5), who denies the necessity of destruction in every sacrifice. Where, however, the propitiatory purpose is more prominent, we say that slaying or destruction of some kind is the more fitting. In this sense (with some reserve, however), we interpret the words of Bellarmine (De Missa, 1. I, C. 2, last par.), Vasquez (disp. 220, C. 3, n. 22 foll.), Lugo (disp. 19, s. I, n. 7), and the greater number of modern theologians, chief among them being Cardinal Billot.

Propitiation, however, since it includes the concept of compensation for injury done to the divine right, is an actual recognition of the injured right of God, and thus includes a latreutic attitude towards the divine excellence; indeed it is simply a kind of latria, appropriate to the state of the sinner. Hence it also is both eucharistic and impetratory. Indeed it implies special gratitude for special mercy—special, because it is shown towards one who is unworthy and undeserving. Further, it not only implies impetration for pardon, namely, pardon received through petition, but it also implies that, pardon being granted and no other obstacle to the influx of goodness and favour towards men being placed, other benefits besides pardon are obtained from God. Every propitiatory sacrifice is therefore also eucharistic and impetratory.

B. Offering And Immolation

From all we have said it follows that change of itself, or destruction of itself, does not suffice to integrate the sacrifice. No matter what the change, or how complete the destruction, an offering to God of the thing changed or destroyed is absolutely essential,[18] and this offering must be sensible, ritual, liturgical (that is, it must contain the action of the liturgus, the duly constituted sacrificer, without whom there is no sacrifice). The sensible offering is not always necessarily distinguished (that is, as one thing is distinguished from another) from the change of the thing sacrificed; it suffices that it be implied (as sometimes happens) in the outward contingencies of the sacrifice, namely, in the actual rite of slaying, of changing the condition of the victim, whatever that change may be.[19] But where the offering is distinct from the immolation, it must consist in some action suitable to indicate surrender and dedication or consecration of the victim. Such an action, common among the Hebrews especially, was the pouring of blood round about or upon the altar.[20] This we know from Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, Deuteronomy. For an animal slain, even by a layman, outside the temple, was commonly regarded as being presented to God, in the fact of the priest bringing the blood to the altar, the altar supplying, so to speak, the place of the divinity by whose presence the victim was sanctified.[21] The reason is: sacrifice being in the nature of a gift, there must be some sensible act of presentation or of handing over of the gift. This same statement is clear from Leviticus, I, 2 foll. There we read that the slaying of the animals appointed for the sacrifice was permitted to others than the priests, though the duty of offering the animals fell on the priests alone (compare Exod., XVIII, I; Hebr., V, 1-4).

This is clear particularly from the sacrifice of Christ. He certainly did not slay Himself. That was the work of the deicide Jews, although He did offer Himself immaculate to God (Hebr., IX, 14). At another time we shall consider the manner of this offering. Therefore, the slaying of the victim might be a dreadful crime, yet the offering of that victim (still to be slain or already slain) might be a religious and holy action. Thus the crime of the Jews was awful, and the priestly offering of Christ the Lord most holy.[22]

The word immolation, therefore, in its very strictest sense implies the destruction or the slaying of the victim, though not without reference to some kind of offering. Sacrifice, therefore, in its proper sense has two factors: the (outward) act of offering and the immolation. The victim is either offered to be immolated, or is offered by immolation, or is offered as immolated. Neither the offering in itself alone, nor the immolation in itself alone suffices to confer victimhood; both are required.

We often find writers who use the words offering and immolation without making this distinction clear. They employ one or the other word for the whole act of sacrifice. This is more or less natural, because there are many sacrifices where the offering is distinguished from the immolation merely in concept, so that in these cases the sacrifice is actually either the one or the other. Besides, even where both offering and immolation are distinct, neither pertains to the sacrifice without the other. Hence it resulted that offering and immolation were looked upon as synonymous, offering being used for immolation and immolation for offering. In this sense we say that Christ immolated Himself for our salvation, though He did not slay Himself; He simply offered Himself to the slaughter. We say that Christ offered Himself on the altar of the Cross, because it was on the Cross that He was immolated, and in so far sacrificed, in fulfilment of the offering which we know that He had already made as Priest. When dealing with the sacrifice, however, as far as possible we shall always adhere to the distinction, not only in thought but in word, between the offering and the immolation; we shall likewise distinguish both offering and immolation, as part, from the total act of sacrifice.

The word sacrificare stresses the action of the sacrificing priest, and thus indicates offering directly, or slaying indirectly. It will suffice, then, for true sacrifice, that something be offered either as to be immolated, or as immolated.[23]

Sacrifices are bloody from the slaying. They are bloodless, therefore, when there is no slaying: and this may be either because the offering is not connected with the immolation, as when inanimate things are sacrificed, or because a blood sacrifice being presupposed, from which a victim in a permanent state of victimhood is the result, any given sacrifice of that victim is referred back to the presupposed immolation, repeating, so to speak, that principal offering in virtue of which it is made. In this case the sacrifice is bloodless, but it is essentially relative to the sacrifice in blood, as will be explained later.

§3. Acceptance of the Sacrifice

Even after the offering and the immolation (where there is immolation), there is a further twofold extrinsic consummation pertaining to the sacrifice—one on the part of God, the other on the part of man. We look to God for the acceptance of the sacrifice, while it is fitting that man should partake of it.

A. Necessity Of Divine Acceptance

When we give anything to a person, it is given with a view to its acceptance. If man makes a gift to God, He is in hopes that God will accept that gift. If God rejects it, the gift will not pass into the ownership of God; therefore it is not sacred, it is profane. A victim is not thrown at God, it is not hurled into heaven; in that case it would not be a victim at all. FOR IT IS RATIFIED AS A VICTIM AT THE MOMENT, AND ONLY AT THE MOMENT, WHEN IT IS ACCEPTED BY GOD, AND THUS PASSES INTO THE CONDITION AND THE DIGNITY OF THINGS DIVINE.

If it is refused, cast off, and despised by God, it is just a useless mass of material substance, the offensive slaughter of brute animal, the filth and refuse of flesh and blood. The sacrifice which is not ratified by God is void. The priesthood which is incapable of transferring gifts to God, which is incapable of pledging in turn God's gifts to man, is void.

If, however, God does accept, He is looked upon, in virtue of the sacrifice accepted, as in duty bound towards man. For in the fact that the sacrifice is offered as propitiatory or impetratory, there is on the offerer's side a kind of tentative compact, or treaty, or contract with God, with the end in view that God would deign to accept it, and if so, that He would grant pardon (propitiatory sacrifice), or that He would confer a benefit (impetratory sacrifice). But if God does not accept what is offered, there is no contract. If God refuses to accept the sacrifice, no effect is secured. No pact has been struck between God and man. But if God does accept, a bilateral contract immediately intervenes: and man will certainly and necessarily obtain that for which the sacrifice was ordained.

B. Outward Sign Of Divine Acceptance

But seeing that the inner workings of the mind of God are not known to man, it was at all times natural that men should endeavour to discover some outward sign of the divine acceptance. And there was this further reason: in the sacrificial contract between God and man, just as in ordinary contracts, there had to be some kind of mutual signification of giving and receiving. This signification might be expressed either by a human or a divine act. Where acceptance was expressed by a human action, this action might be of two sorts. One way—inchoative and imperfect—was the pouring of the blood of the victim on or round about the altar. Though this action coincided with the ritual offering, therefore, it was different from the viewpoint of its different aspects; for what man gave, the altar accepted; the altar, permeated, so to speak, with the presence of the divinity, took the place of God. What the altar received, therefore, was looked upon as taken up by God.

The other—the more perfect way—was that of the holocaust. For after the sacrifice was offered, by the sprinkling of blood upon the altar for example, various parts of the victim were placed upon the kindled fire, and thus devoured by the fire, with the end in view that under the symbol of fire God Himself would be taken as consuming and feasting on the victims.[24]

Each of these ways was weak, because each was liable to falsification on man's part; the human sign could exist, and the divine thing be absent. In other words, man could signify that a thing was acceptable to God, yet that thing could be really hateful to Him.

On the part of God, divine acceptance was usually made known by fire sent down from heaven (Gen., XV, 17; Judg., VI, 19-20; Paral., XXI, 26; Kings (3), XVIII, 38),[25] "which fire," as William of Paris (op. cit., C 24, p. 72) writes, "would eat His part of the sacrifices, taking His place, as it were." This was the more perfect way,[26] for a sign coming from God could not be false. But even then, as we shall see, it was not the most perfect way of all. At best it was only figurative. For the victims were carnal, and even though they were food for the divine fire, they did not actually pass into the divine sanctity, they merely prefigured the perfect Victim, which was to be the food for the divine glory, and to be borne into the sanctuary of divine holiness, into the holy of holies.

§4. Partaking of the Sacrifice

A. Reasons For Partaking

In so far as circumstances permitted, men have always converted to their own use as food and drink, part of the gifts and victims dedicated to God. Nor was this by any means a violation of the sacrifice; rather it was a consummation of it. For sacrifice aimed particularly at opening a path to obtain the favours of God. when He was appeased by our victims, or when He was moved to bestow gifts on us in return for our own to Him. This communication of divine gifts was most appropriately signified by a banquet[27] in which God would feast men with food proper to man himself. For then men did not come to an altar as to an ordinary table; they came to a table which was sacred and divine, and at this table they were fellow guests of God,[28] who summoned them to His banquet, and bade them sit at His table.[29] And if a lamb, or bread, or a cup was distributed, it was not looked upon as common food, it was the lamb of God, the bread of God, the cup of God. St. Paul declares this to be a universal dogma, in reference to all sacrifices of both Jews and Gentiles (not to mention our own sacrifice), when in the same Epistle He writes, first, of the Jewish sacrifices: Behold Israel according to the flesh; are not they that eat of the sacrifices partakers of the altar? (2 Cor., X, 18); and then of the sacrifices of the Gentiles: I would not that you should be partakers with the devils; you cannot be partakers of the table of the Lord, and of the tables of devils (2 Cor., X, 21-22). Therefore, just as those who were partakers of the sacrifices to idols were rated as table-companions of the devils, those who partook of the sacrifices to God were rated as table companions of God. The use of the common table is, for those who sit at that table, the most effective and closest bond of unity.[30] William of Paris speaks of this effect of the sacred banquet as the fifth cause of sacrifice: "The fifth cause is familiarity and nearness to God. For the offering of gifts and the partaking of the sacred table beget the greatest confidence of nearness to God, and make us partakers with the family of God, for one is considered a member of the family of the person from whom He receives nutriment, and by whose table He lives. Clearly, then, these sacrifices impressed on the partakers the sense of familiarity and nearness to God, since by partaking of the same table they became in a manner sitters at the table with God. Now apart from the union of the father and mother as cause of our being, this is the most effective bond of familiarity. For this reason, seeing that God could not be in their presence to eat with them, He sometimes sent fire from heaven to consume His share of the sacrifice, and, so to speak, to take His place" (op. cit., c. 2, p. 30).

Hence He represents the person partaking of the sacrifice as speaking to the divinity in these terms: "By this sharing of the immolations, by this that I am admitted to thy sacrifices with thy other worshippers, I proclaim that I am one of thy family and of thy worshippers" (op. cit., C. 24, p. 72).

In this divine intercourse was figured particularly the future attainment of heavenly favours, for which man would be prepared by the sacrifice of justice, and to which He would be initiated by feasting on victims consecrated to God. But there was also figured a present sanctification. Because the thing made sacred to God, by the fact of its being made sacred, acquired a sanctification of its own. Now that it was above and before anything else the property of God, it passed into the nature, so to speak, of a divine thing, clothed as it were with the sanction and the unction of the divinity itself. Therefore, the sacrificial action was a sanctification. Indeed the sacrificial form and condition of the gifts and victims consisted precisely in this sanctity with which they were endowed by the act of sacrifice, and which they conserved as long as the things sacrificed remained incorrupt. For this sanctity inherent in the sacrifice was regarded as infused into the partakers of the victim; it not only destined them for future partnership in the divine sanctity, but it made it present to them here and now. For the man who ate of the sacrifice, by communion with the victim sacrificed to God, became himself, so to speak, a victim sacrificed to God; and the signification was in the highest degree perfected by the fact that nothing else was indicated but that man consecrated and dedicated himself interiorly to God, and consequently became united to Him also.

Finally, besides the communion with God from the partaking of the sacrifice, there was further the communion of the partakers one with another.[31] William of Paris speaks of this as an additional reason for the sacrifices: "The sixth cause was to make or to unite the people of God into one body, in other words, that from the many, they would form one household and one family. For there is nothing so conducive to make the whole household of children and family one as the partaking of food in common; so also the communion of spiritual food and drink more than any other thing, makes for one spiritual household family" (op. cit., C. 2, p. 30).

Here, then, we have all the reasons why the partaking of the sacrifice, offered by way of banquet, is by no means repugnant to the nature and character of sacrifice; on the contrary, this partaking by way of banquet is most appropriate to sacrifice.

B. Distinction Between Sacrifice And Banquet

We may state that for the most part it occurs that in the one action a sacrifice is offered to God and a banquet is prepared for us. There is a danger, however, in attempting to explain the nature of sacrifice by stressing the banquet; rather it is the other way round: the banquet must be explained by the sacrifice. The banquet is not sacred unless it is consecrated to God by the sacrificial offering and the divine acceptance. There is no sacred banquet without the supposition or understanding of a sacrifice previous to the banquet. Hence the true character of sacrifice cannot be explained by merely pointing to the banquet in the case where the offering is wanting. No matter how much you insist on the signification of a banquet prepared for me, you will never show that it is a sacrifice celebrated by me as long as you say that it is not offered by me. If, therefore, the Church has a sacrifice, she must offer it in the truest sense. If she has the sacrifice of the Body and Blood of Christ, she must truly and sensibly offer the Body and Blood of Christ. She possesses no sacrifice if, while making no offering, she possesses only the banquet of the Body and Blood of Christ, though it was once offered on the Cross in sacrifice, and offered by Christ Himself. Suarez, therefore, very justly says: "Although in the ancient sacrifices the things offered and sacrificed were sometimes consumed by the priests or by the people, still this was not common to all the sacrifices, as is clear in the cases of the holocausts; and even in those sacrifices in which this consummation occurred, it did not pertain to the essence of sacrifice but, after the sacrifice was consummated,[32] it used to be done to signify that man was admitted to the participation of divine things by the sacrifice" (De Eucharistia, disp. 73, s. 5, n. 6).

Hence the error of those writers who, collecting innumerable excerpts from the Fathers in which they state that the Eucharistic sacrifice is a banquet prepared for us, think to prove that the actual teaching of the Fathers was, not that the Body and Blood of Christ was, properly speaking, offered by the Church, but that the Victim once offered by Christ alone is now placed before us as food by the priests of the Church.[33] For although in the one same action Christ is offered to God by the Church, and is given to us to be partaken of, nevertheless this same action on the one subject has two formalities absolutely distinct; it bespeaks two opposite terms of reference, namely, God and ourselves. For the banquet that is prepared is prepared for me; the Body and Blood that is offered is offered to God.

William of Paris in His lucid way expressed this beautifully: "The Church of God is at once His house and His temple. Because it is His temple He must be worshipped in it for the three ends mentioned (praise, propitiation, impetration), hence in His temple there are both altar and sacrifice. Because it is His house—and He has a large family-it requires a table whereat to eat, a table that is suited to the home and to the family. It is not necessary to pile up proofs to show that the altar and the table are one and the same thing, just as the temple and the house are one and the same thing. But we speak of it as an altar when we have in mind the offering and the sanctification (meaning: the act of sacrifice), and as such it is of course essentially referred to God, in the fact that it is appointed to the honour and worship of God; we speak of it as a table, when we have in mind spiritual food, and as such it is essentially referred to the family for whose spiritual refection it has been set up and prepared; so that one and the same thing is sacrifice as offered to God, and at the same time food which sanctifies as partaken of by the faithful" (De Sacramento Eucharistiae, c. 2, t. I, p. 437-438).

The Council of Trent, therefore, taught that in the passage where St. Paul speaks of the table of the devils and the table of God, in each case table means altar (sess. 22, C. 1. D. 939).[34] It added the following canon: "If any one says that in the Mass there is not offered to God a true and proper sacrifice, or that what is offered is other than Christ gave us to be eaten, A.S." (D. 938). This chapter should suffice upon the matter of sacrifice in general, as understood and defined by the Council of Trent: "visible sacrifice .... as the nature [35] of man demands."


CHAPTER 2: THE SACRIFICE ENACTED IN THE PASSION

§1. The Reality of This Sacrifice

There are those outside the Faith who have tried to prove that Christ had no intention of offering His death for the remission of sins. We shall spend no time upon them. Our concern is with the teaching of the Church. Not only does our faith teach that the death of Christ was redemptive, that is, it adequately and even superabundantly satisfied God for us,[36] but it also teaches that His death was a real and true sacrifice offered by Christ Himself. To deny this or doubt it is to deny or doubt the Catholic faith.

Moreover, many centuries before, it was foretold by Isaias, LIII, 10 (according the more probable reading, compare Condamin, Le Livre d'lsaie, p. 323 and 349); and Christ Himself on the very threshold of the Passion (shortly we shall show that He actually did offer the sacrifice in the Last Supper), openly declared that He was sanctifying Himself, that is, offering Himself in sacrifice for others; for them do I sanctify myself (John, XVII, 19). St. Paul, as we have seen, institutes a comparison between the eating of the sacrifice to the idols and the partaking of the Body and Blood of Christ. And He confirms in express terms the truth of this sacrifice, when He says Christ our pasch is sacrificed (2 Cor., V, 1), that Christ gave Himself an oblation and a sacrifice to God for an odour of sweetness (Eph., V, 2). So much so that He is a victim of propitiation (Rom., III, 25), a victim for sin (I2 Cor., V, 21),[37] by whose Blood we are cleansed (Tit., II, 14).

St. John also agrees, He calls Him a propitiation for our sins (1 John, IV, 10 and II, 2, coll II Mach., III, 33, Septuagint Numbers, V, 8, Septuagint Ezech., IV, 27), He says that we are cleansed (1 John, I, 7), or freed (Apoc., I, 5) by His Blood. In these words, as in the words of St. Peter (1 Peter, I, 2) that we are sprinkled with the Blood of Christ. There is an evident allusion to the Mosaic sacrificial rite.

The title lamb as a designation proper to Christ and used both by St. Peter and St. John also refers to the sacrificial rite. He is a lamb unspotted and undefiled (1 Peter, I, 18-19), who taketh away the sin of the world (John, I, 19), as the Lamb of God, that is dedicated to God; He is the lamb slain (Apoc., V, 6 and 12, XIII, 8).

But even without any of these testimonies, the abundantly clear and compelling evidence of the Epistle to the Hebrews (IV, 14 and foll.) would be quite sufficient to convince us of this. For the whole trend of the Epistle goes to show that in the one sacrifice of Christ contrasted with the sacrifices of the Law, which were a shadow of it, the ancient priesthood was abrogated and a new priesthood instituted. No apter or more powerful proof of the actuality of the sacrifice could be desired than this comparison of the figure and the reality.

Moreover, the Priesthood of Christ so forcefully insisted on in Holy Scripture, both by the Psalmist (Ps., CIX, 4, compare with Hebr., V, 6, VII, 15, 17, 21) and by St. Paul in the Epistle to the Hebrews (priest, V, 6, VII, 15, 17, 21, high priest (ierea megan), X, 21 high priest (arxiereuj), II, 17 III, r, IV, 15, V, 10, VI, 20, VII, 26, IX, II; great high priest, IV, 14), would of necessity be wanting, if Christ did not offer sacrifice in the strictest sense of the word: For every high priest is appointed to offer gifts and sacrifices; wherefore it is necessary that He also should have something to offer (see Hebr. VIII, 3, compare V, 1). And really, if we deny to the Passion its sacrificial character, the priesthood of Christ does not exist; it is from the Passion that Christ is Victim, and the sacrificial condition is in the Eucharist only from the Passion.

From the time of the Apostles on, the theologians of the Church have always taught this doctrine of the sacrifice of the Body and Blood of Christ. Thus the very early author of the Epistle attributed to Barnabas (about A. D. 72),[38] "He was crucified for our sins .... He was to offer the vessel of the spirit (i. e., His body) as a victim, that the figure represented in Isaac, who was offered on the altar, might be fulfilled. What, therefore, does He say according to the Prophet? .... 'You will give vinegar and gall to drink to me who am about to offer my Flesh for the sins of the new people.'" (Barnab., VII, 3-5 Compare VIII, 2-3, V, 1-2. F. P. 1, 58-60, 62, so).

Clement of Rome calls Christ "our Pontiff" (2 Cor., 64. F. P. 1, 82), the "pontiff of our souls" (ibid., 61, 3, p. 180), and the "pontiff of our offerings" (ibid., 36, 1, p. 144), "He gave His Flesh for us, He gave His Flesh for our flesh, His Soul for our souls" (ibid., 46, 6, p. 162). Polycarp also calls Him "the eternal pontiff" (Epist., XII, 2, P. P. I, 310).

Justin calls the second goat, offered at the same time as the emissary goat that was sent into the wilderness, a figure of Christ, who "was an offering for all sinners willing to do penance" (Dial., 40. P.G. 6, 564).

Tertullian writes: "Isaac, led a victim by His father, and carrying the wood for himself, thus early foreshadowed the death of Christ, given as victim by the Father, and carrying the wood of His own Passion" (Adv. Judaeos, 10. P.L. 2, 626).

Following this early period, there is no doctrine of the Church so universally insisted on as this teaching on the sacrifice of Christ. J. Riviere. in His erudite work, Le Dogme de la Redemption (Revue d'etude historique, 1905), has collected a number of examples of this teaching of the Church. To these we add a few specimens of outstanding significance.

Zeno of Verona: "This, I say, is the perfect Lamb, for in it the high priest concealed in His victim by reason of the mystery, today gave to God the Man whom He offered in sacrifice, " (Lib. 2, tract. 55, in die paschae. P. 1:, . II, 511).

St. Ephraem abounds in the praises of this great sacrifice. Thus He writes in the Hymnus azymorom: "The Lamb of truth, knowing that a rejected priesthood and polluted sacrificers did not suffice for Him, became for His own Body the Priest and the Prince of sacrificers. Our Sacrificer, become Victim by His own sacrifice, abolished the victims and showered His grace all over the world. No lamb is greater than the heavenly Lamb. Since the priests were earthly and the Lamb heavenly, He was both Priest and Victim for Himself. For polluted priests were not worthy to offer the immaculate Lamb, the pacific Victim who brought peace to heaven and earth, bringing peace to all by His Blood" (Hymn azym., hymn. 2, str. 2, 3, 5, 6, ed. Lamy, t. I, p. 576-578).

St. Hilary, contrasting the sacrifices of the Law with the sacrifice of Christ, says that the sacrifice of Christ was superexcellent in this: that the sacrifices of the Law were commanded to be offered under threat of a curse, while that sacrifice was offered in the most perfect freedom: "Therefore He offered Himself to the death of the accursed, in order to destroy the curse of the Law, by freely offering Himself a Victim to God the Father, so that the curse which sin caused, and which was attached to the necessary and intermittent victims, should be lifted by a voluntary victim. In another place in the Psalms mention is made of this sacrifice: Sacrifices and oblations thou wouldst not: but a body thou hast fitted to me; by offering to God the Father, who rejected the sacrifices of the Law, the pleasing Victim of His Body. The holy Apostle thus speaks of this offering: This He did once offering himself a pleasing victim to God; He would redeem the whole human race by the offering of this holy and perfect victim" (in Ps. 53 3, n. I 3. P. L 9, 345).

Indeed, so widely promulgated and so firm was the faith of the Church in the truth of the sacrifice of Christ, that it was looked upon as an established fact in the controversies that arose between the heretics and the Catholics. The question of how the priesthood was to be attributed to the Incarnate Word was interwoven in all their discussions. The Catholics maintained against the Arians that Christ was not Priest by reason of His more sublime nature (see Epiphanius, Haer. 69, 37-39. P.G. 42, 260-261; Ambrose, De Fide, 1. 3. c. 11, n. 87. P.L. 16, 607); against Nestorius, that He is Priest (though by reason of the human nature), and yet at the same time God (see Cyril of Alexandria, Contra Nestorium, 1. 3, c. P.G. 76, 116-125); and finally against the Eutychians, that in one and the same Priest there are two natures unconfused (see Theodoretus, Eranistes, Dial. I. P.G. 83, 57; Leo the Great, Ep. 124, C. 4. P L. 54, 1064).[39]

A summary of the whole teaching of the Church on the true character of sacrifice is to be gathered from the works of St. Augustine. He declares: "By His death, that is BY THE ONE TRUE SACRIFICE OFFERED FOR US, He washed away all sin" (Trin., 1. 4, C. 13, n. 17. P.L. 899). "In the wonderful and ONE TRUE SACRIFICE the Blood of Christ was shed for us. " This ONE ONLY TRUE and wonderful sacrifice was signified in figure by the many sacrifices which went before" (Contra Advers. Leg. et Prophet., 1. 1, P.L. 42, 624). Indeed, all the sacrifices that were ever offered, even those offered to the devils, were predictions OF THE ONE TRUE SACRIFICE TO COME, which was offered for all the sins of all believers .... Therefore do the devils arrogantly demand for themselves THE TRUE SACRIFICE which is due to the one true God, and which Christ alone offered on the altar of God, the devils imitating it with their victims of cattle .... On the other hand, in the victims of cattle which the Hebrews offered to God, the Victim to come was plainly foretold. Hence Christians now celebrate the memorial of that same sacrifice, by the most holy offering and partaking of the Body and Blood of Christ" (Contra Faust., 1. 20, C. I 8. P.L. 42, 382-383). And again: "Here in dwelling at some length on the TRUE SACRIFICE, my aim was to prove that this sacrifice is due only to the one true God, the sacrifice which the one true Priest, Mediator between God and man, offered to Him, and that it was fitting that the sacrifices, which were promised in figure of that sacrifice, should be celebrated with animal victims, so commending to us the Flesh and Blood to come, the unique Victim by which the remission of the sins, contracted by flesh and blood, could be obtained .... And thus it was fitting that, just as the Hebrews celebrated religious predictions OF THIS TRUE SACRIFICE, SO also the pagans celebrated sacrilegious imitations of it" (op. cit., L 22, c 17, col. 409). Therefore, "In many different ways all these signified the one sacrifice, the memorial of which we now celebrate. Hence when this sacrifice was revealed to us, and in its own time offered, those other laws regarding the celebration of the sacrifices were abrogated, but they still retained for us their value as signs" (op. cit., L 6, c. 5, col. 231). Finally, "Before the coming of Christ the Flesh and Blood of this sacrifice was foreshadowed in similitude by the sacrifices of victims; in the Passion it was celebrated in real truth; after the Ascension, the equivalent sacrament of memorial is celebrated .... Thus the sacrifices of the pagans and those of the Hebrews are far apart, even though the difference is found merely in the different persons to whom they were immolated and offered. The sacrifices of the pagans were offered to the sacrilegious arrogance of the devils; those of the Hebrews to the one true God, in order that an image promising the true sacrifice to come should be offered to Him to whom it was to be offered in real truth in the Passion of the Body and Blood of Christ" (op. cit., L 20, C. 21, col. 385-386).

From all this it is clear how contrary it is to the tradition of the Fathers, to treat as metaphorical that sacrifice whence was derived all the truth that was in the ancient sacrifices and all their value as figures of truth to come, as well as all the reality of our own sacrifice of the Mass. For only in that sacrifice of the Passion and Death of Our Lord do we find combined and in plenitude all the latreutic and propitiatory signification and efficacy of sacrifice.

To examine the Fathers in detail would be waste of time, for up to the present no one has called in question the dogma declared by the Church (Trent. sess. 22, compare can. 3 and 4. D. 938-940, 950-951), apart from the Socinians,[40] a few Protestants and Rationalists. Gihr writes: "That the propitious death of Christ is a true and real sacrifice, is taught explicitly by the word of God, and this has at all times been believed and acknowledged by Christians" (Das heilige Massopfer, 4. 33).

"The sacerdotal office is in a sense the basis and the foundation of all the benefits of Christ to us; these benefits are really to be considered as so many effects of the death of Christ who gave Himself, an expiatory victim to God, on behalf of man. And truly from this expiatory sacrifice offered on the Cross, redemption, reconciliation, and full satisfaction spontaneously flow. This dogma: that Christ, true Priest, offered to God a true sacrifice on the Cross, is opposed among others by Socinians and Rationalists" (Madureira, Institutiones Theologiae Dogmaticae specialis, t. 2, tract. 1, c. 3, . par. 23, p. 195).

The first of our theologians, as far as I know, to cast a faint shadow upon this dogma was H. Riviere (Revue pratique d'Apologetique, Oct. 1 and Nov. 1, 1911). It is true and it has never been denied by any Catholic theologian, that Christ the Redeemer made satisfaction for us by a moral act (ibid., Nov. 1, p. 162), by an exercise of His liberty (ibid., 163), by virtue and merit of His love (ibid., 164), by obedience yielded freely through charity (ibid.); but it is agreed by all theologians of all ages, that it is not by any moral act or free act, or act of charity or act of obedience, that we are redeemed, but by one particular act of that fourfold sort, the act by which Christ suffered His Passion in such a way that He was thereby offering the sacrifices of His Body and Blood. That sacrifice was in no way METAPHORICAL (ibid., p. I 74 and Oct. 1, p. 32), in no way a sacrifice improperly so called, to be admitted as a sacrifice only in the wide sense that there was a value before God in Christ's death, rendering it apt to win divine favour for us; but in the strictest possible sense as a sensible offering of the Passion made by Christ Priest, to give the supreme worship of latria to God, and to make propitiation for man. Theologians have always realized that such a sacrifice in this strict acceptation was the foundation of speculative theology, and have never spoken of it otherwise (ibid., p. 3 2), save when through want of caution they have made use of language lacking precision, or have been for a space of time devoid of sobriety of judgment.[41]

§2. Intrinsic Nature of the Sacrifice of Christ

Christ is the Head of mankind in two ways particularly—He presides as Ruler over us, and He infuses grace. He possessed the virtue of infusing grace by natural right in His Incarnation from the union of the humanity to the divinity. Divine ordinance, however, decreed the free exercise of this right only from His Passion. Hence the activity of that virtue of infusing grace must be considered as consequent on the sacrifice of Christ.[42]

He had already before the sacrificial action the office of presiding or ruling, and in virtue of this office He presided over men as Prophet and King, and in virtue of this office also He was Priest for man whom in His own Person He represented—the true God-Man, as God turning towards man, as Man turning towards God.[43] It was fitting, therefore, that He should offer sacrifice for us "all of whom Christ bore, as He also bore our sins" (Cyprian, Epist. 63, n. 33. P.L. 4, 383). And it was especially fitting that He should sacrifice Himself, thus representing human nature as its Head, as in person He represented God. We have now to consider the two elements of this sacrifice—the visible and the invisible element.

A. The Invisible Element

The invisible element signified in the Passion of Christ our Head, is the dedication of the human race to the worship of God and the alienation of the human race from sin. We have seen already the words of Leo the Great: "Therefore the Cross of Christ has the sacrament of the true and already foretold altar, on which by means of the victim of salvation, the offering of human nature should be celebrated" (Sermo 55. P.L. 54, 324). Dealing with this subject, St. Thomas notes the following objection: "The Passion of Christ is not a sign. Therefore, it seems that the Passion of Christ is not a sacrament"—He answers: "The Passion of Christ is .... a sign of something to be observed by us, according to the saying of I St. Peter, IV, 1: Christ therefore having suffered in the flesh, be you also armed with the same thought: for He that hath suffered in the flesh hath ceased from sins, that now He may live the rest of His time in the flesh, not after the desire of men, but according to the will of God" (3 S. 48, 3, 2m). Indeed, in the same Epistle, St. Peter had already written: Christ died once for our sins: the just for the unjust, THAT He MIGHT OFFER US TO GOD (1 Peter, III, 18). Here is the invisible sacrifice, of which the visible sacrifice was the sacrament. To this invisible thing signified, which carries with it the detestation of sin, there is a corresponding reply on the part of God, in man being redeemed and restored to His rights in the celestial heritage, by the resurrection of Jesus Christ who is at the right hand of God, swallowing down death, that we might be made heirs of life everlasting (1 Peter, III, 2 I-22).

The greatest difference between the sacrifice of Christ and the ancient sacrifices was that in the ancient sacrifices the invisible element was really signified by the visible element, but it was not effected. Indeed, it was regarded as presupposed. But in the sacrifice of Christ, what was signified was effected by virtue of the sacrifice. For our turning away from sin is not a precondition of the sacrifice of the Cross, but follows on that sacrifice.

Up to the present we have spoken of what is signified in this sacrifice, and of what is signified as pertaining only to ourselves. But in this sacrifice there is something pertaining to Christ, and indeed to Christ principally and first of all. For the sacrifice of the Cross, from its latreutic and eucharistic aspect, is a sign of the internal dedication of Christ Himself to the praise and worship of God the Father, and from its propitiatory aspect it signifies the desire of Christ to make compensation to the divine honour outraged by us. Hence Suarez, wisely speaking of the signification as pertaining to Christ, and then of the signification as pertaining to us, says:

"Signification is essential to all sacrifice, because without signification there can be no worship of latria which is the essence of sacrifice: and this signification is found in the sacrifice of Christ. For it signified the interior acts whereby Christ offered His life to appease God; it also signified the destruction of sin, and the death of death itself, which the sacrifice was to cause" (De Incarn., in 3 S. 48, 3, commentarius, n. 2. ; compare part 1a disp. 46, s. 1, n. 2). Le Grand similarly: "The sacrifice of Christ, both in respect of Christ as Man and in respect of us, was an attestation of the supreme dominion of God and of perfect subjection to Him .... In this sacrifice also Christ gave thanks for the benefits conferred on man" (De Incarnatione Verbi Divini, Dissert. 10 C. 1, concl. 4).

There need be no fear that what we have said would imply that Christ offered the sacrifice for Himself in the sense condemned by the 10th anathema of Cyril. Because there are two ways in which sacrifice may be offered for a person. In the first way, a priest may offer the sacrifice as presenting the sacrifice of another—He celebrates Mass on behalf of a person giving a stipend. In the second way a priest may offer the sacrifice in favour of somebody—in this sense we say that a priest offers the sacrifice for Him in whose favour the donor of the stipend desires the Mass to be celebrated.

When we consider the first way, there is nothing essentially wrong in saying that Christ offered the sacrifice for Himself—because He presented His own sacrifice, not the sacrifice of another. Although to ward against ambiguity, it would be better not to use an expression of this kind. But in the second way, the only one condemned by Cyril in this connection, we are far from saying that Christ offered the sacrifice for Himself. For in this way sacrifice is offered for a person with this end only: either to make atonement for Him, or to obtain benefits for Him. When Christ offered the sacrifice He had no such end in view in respect of Himself. His end was to make atonement for us and to intercede for us.[44] At the same time it was actually meritorious for Christ. But this merit was by reason of the charitable intention of the ultimate aim of Christ, which arose from His will to offer the sacrifice for us. For just as prayer said for another can be meritorious for myself, though I do not ask anything for myself, so Christ merited by the sacrifice which He did not offer for Himself, but for us. It is thus that we must interpret St. Thomas (3 S. 22, 4, 2m),[45] and also St. Bonaventure.

Nor is it wrong to say that Christ received glory for Himself by the sacrifice, not indeed as needing the sacrifice for Himself, but as the Head of those who did need it. For just as it was preordained that Christ should enter heaven as our Head, and what is not open to the body cannot be open to the head, Christ our Head could enter only by way of His sacrifice, by means of which alone the way to glory was open to us His body. And as He purchased the state of glory for Himself, in so far He presides as Head over us, united to Him as members. This solution will not come under the anathema of Cyril.[46] It furnishes, moreover, a right interpretation of a number of sayings of the Fathers on the Resurrection and the Ascension of Christ which will be considered later (Chap. V). Keep in mind throughout this enquiry that the angle from which we view Christ as an individual, is not the same as that from which we view Christ as our Head. They are two different angles, just as within the individual Person of Christ Himself we have the divine and the human nature, and each nature must be considered from a different viewpoint.

B. The Visible Element

Three things are required for the complete constitution of the visible element of sacrifice—the victim, the immolation of the victim, and the offering of the victim. We shall deal with these three in turn.

(a) The Victim

We may consider the victim prior to the sacrifice, which is the material consideration, or formally—as the actual subject of the sacrifice.

The Victim Materially Considered

Materially considered, the victim was rational and clean.

By clean we mean that the victim was free from every stain and contagion or debt of sin, not only because in Christ the Victim was infused with the sanctity of the Word, (this sanctity is incompatible with what is unclean, it absolutely excludes even the slightest deordination from the Person of the Son of God), but also because though His human nature was derived from Adam, it was not derived in the manner in which sin, or at least the debt of original sin, was propagated.[47]

Secondly, the victim was rational, gifted with reason, and so a willing and loving victim, in heart's desire one with the Priest, as also one with the Priest in value and acceptability. It is quite true that any offering whatever coming from Christ would be clothed by His divinity with infinite worth, and by His charity or love would possess all-sufficient power of atonement for every sin.[48] But by offering Himself He showed much more His love and His desire to make satisfaction to God: for the virtue of the Passion which He accepted was to increase the difficulties to be surmounted by His love.[49]

Therefore, the very highest significative virtue accrued to the sacrifice from the fact that Christ was at the same time its Priest and its Victim. And since sacrifice in its proper sense is in its significative virtue, the sacrifice of our Redeemer was of all sacrifices the most perfect and the most effective to appease the divine majesty. Looked at from this aspect, the closest of all the ancient sacrifices to the one true sacrifice was that of Abraham, ready to sacrifice Isaac His son.[50] Considered, therefore, from every aspect, the Victim of our salvation was by far the most fitting for the end desired.

Here the words of St. Augustine are to the point: "What priest so just and so holy as the only Son of God who needed no cleansing from His sins, whether original sin, or the sins of daily life? What more suitable could man choose to be offered for Him than human flesh? And for this immolation, what so fitting as mortal flesh? What so clean to cleanse the sins of men, as the Flesh born without any contagion of carnal concupiscence, Flesh nourished in and born from a Virgin's womb? What offering can be so acceptable and so pleasing as the Flesh of our sacrifice made the Body of our Priest?" (4 Trin., l. 4, c. 14. P.L. 42, 901).

St. Thomas is in perfect agreement with St. Augustine: "It is a most perfect sacrifice. In the first place, being the flesh of human nature, it is appropriately offered for man and received under the sacramental veil. Secondly, being mortal and passible, it was suited for immolation. Thirdly, being without sin, it was effective for the cleansing from sin. Fourthly, BEING THE FLESH OF THE OFFERER IT WAS ACCEPTABLE TO GOD BECAUSE OF THE INEFFABLE CHARITY OF Him WHO IS OFFERING His OWN FLESH" (3 S. 48, 3, Im).

Moreover, the fact that Christ was at the same time Victim, explains to us in what manner He was borne down for our sins and inflicted, so to speak, with the punishment of our transgressions (Is., LII, 12, LIII, 13). For the priest offering sacrifice for the sins of the people is looked upon as bearing the sins of the people. And the victim immolated for sin, by His VICARIOUS death, indicates the punishment deserved by the guilty, and by intercession averts it, and by averting, supplies for it: Thus therefore Christ went to His death bearing our sins, though the burden of our sins was not placed on Him by the Father (for this would be unjust), but it was the Son Himself who took up the burden, desiring (under the impulse of love) both to act as our Priest and to surrender Himself as our Victim; and so in His sacrifice Christ made Himself both the bearer of sin and the bearer of punishment.

In the essential character of sacrifice, then, we find the reconciliation of the penal or expiatory nature of the Passion of Christ with the justice of God and the innocence of Christ. "That which was punishment in the eyes of man, was sacrifice in the eyes of the Father" (Adulphus, Expositio super Epistolam B. Pauli Ap. ad Hebr., c. 9. P.L. 79, 1381). We see, therefore, how the substitution of Christ for the human race, which was required for vicarious satisfaction, is a fitting consequence of His Priesthood, and is realized in the sacrifice; we see too how necessary it is in explaining the sacrificial character of Christ's vicarious satisfaction for us, that we avoid the adoption here of the strictly penal explanation of such satisfaction.[51]

The Victim Formally Considered

When we come to consider the victim as formally underlying the sacrifice, we are at once confronted with the question: how could that sanctification in which the formal condition of victim consists (Ch. 1) accrue to Christ. For even before the sacrifice, the perfection of sanctity was in the human nature of Christ from the unction of the divinity united with it in the one Person.

However, a little clear thinking will show that this difficulty is not peculiar to this point of theology, it is constantly met with in other points of doctrine, and with equal force. One might ask, for instance: How could Christ merit such things as are already His, and due to Him by natural right, such as the glory of His Body, and so on (3 S. 19, 3). The usual solution given to all these difficulties is as follows: in these cases, Christ did not merit these things in such a way as to make things hitherto less due, now more due to Himself, but made them from being due to Himself on one ground, now due to Him on one or more additional grounds. On this matter read Toletus (in 3 S. 19, 4, conc. 2). Thus in the matter now before us, we must say that perfect sanctity, as inherent in Christ through the Incarnation, could not indeed be increased in Him, but could come to be inherent in Him on added grounds, in the words of Rupert of Dietz (in Levit., L 2, C. 5. P.L. 167, 791) : "The great High Priest of the true heavenly tabernacle was sanctified first in the Holy Spirit, and afterwards in His own Blood."

In this sense we must understand St. Thomas, where He advances and solves the objection: "Every victim, from the fact that it is offered to God, is sanctified to God. But from the beginning the humanity of Christ was sanctified and united to God. Therefore, it cannot be said properly that Christ as Man was a Victim. " He replies: "It must be said that the sanctity of the humanity of Christ from the beginning did not prevent His human nature when offered to God in the Passion, from being sanctified in a new manner, that is as Victim actually presented then, for He acquired the actual sanctification as Victim AT THAT MOMENT from the charity and grace of the union which had from the beginning sanctified the same humanity absolutely" (3 S. 22, 3, 2m). In other words, the existent sanctification of Christ FROM THEN ONWARDS acquired a new relation to the offering whereby He was made Victim (Compare ibid., 2m). For although He could not acquire this sanctity (since He already had it), it was in Him now as it would have been, had it been induced in Him by the offering.

Hence Christ the Victim now appears as the Holy One of God on an additional ground in so far as He is now definitely constituted the Lamb of God.

(b) The Immolation

It should be noted here that despite the fact that the sacrifice of Christ is often called the sacrifice of His death (and in the sense to be explained immediately, properly so), the immolation did not have place at the precise moment of the separation of the Soul from the Body. For in that moment the soul is separated from the inanimate body, so that a living body does not underlie the separation: because life is terminated extrinsically, as the philosophers say, at the first moment of its non-existence (that is when the soul, the principle of life, leaves the body), while death begins intrinsically at the first moment of its existence. Now the inanimate body is in no way the subject of voluntary passion, because every principle of a voluntary act, either of the will itself, or commanded by the will, is lacking in such a body. But it was essential that the immolation of Christ should be actually voluntary in Him who was accepting and enduring it; for it was precisely this voluntary acceptance that gave worth to the Victim, as well as merit to the Priest: because the Victim and the Priest are one in will just as they are one in reality. Hence the immolation is to be placed, not in the death but in the Passion, in so far as the Passion was the road to the death (St. Thom., 3 S. 50, 6).

In this it is like all other immolations in which violence inducing death is involved. Hence from the viewpoint of immolation, strictly the sacrifice should be called the sacrifice of the Passion.

Nevertheless, from another aspect the sacrifice of Christ may rightly be called the sacrifice of His death, in this way that, had the Passion of Christ not been death-bringing, it would not have been an immolation. Under this aspect, both the Passion as the road to death, and the death as the terminus of the Passion, are looked upon as one thing. For as Cajetan (in h. 1.) justly remarks: "Although the being dead, considered in itself alone, is neither an act elicited nor an act commanded by the soul," nevertheless "as the death terminates the process of its coming, it falls under the one same title of merit as its coming: for in one and the same act the martyr is willing to be slain and to have been slain. And thus precious in the sight of the Lord is the death of His saints: and thus the death of Christ was meritorious."

Just as it can be said in this sense that Christ offered His death, so we too can be said to offer the same death after Him, when we offer the Body and Blood of Christ sanctified for ever from His Passion.

(c) The Oblation

In determining the manner of Christ's offering of His death and Passion, it should be noted (as theologians agree), that He suffered it willingly. Thus Peter the Venerable (Tractatus contra Petrobrusianos. P.L. 197, 797) : "He is said to offer Himself, because He surrendered His soul to death not by compulsion but freely. " St. Thomas: "Christ did not slay Himself, but of His own free will He exposed Himself to death, and so He is said to have offered Himself" (3 S. 22, 2, Im). Now, that voluntariety was all-embracing and continuous: He could not only have avoided His enemies or prevented them; but also He could have let them work their fury upon Him yet prevented Himself from suffering any pain; or He could have submitted to these pains yet have kept Himself from death (such was the power of His Soul united to the divinity). All this notwithstanding, He allowed His enemies to afflict Him, and submitting to pain, He submitted likewise to the law of death.

Following Eusebius of Caesarea (De Theophania, fragm. 3. P.G. 24, 609-612), Hilary treated this doctrine at length in the tenth book De Trinitate (cap. 23 seq. P.L. 10 361 seq.), and Philippus Eleemosynarius, a medieval writer, in a very complete and brilliant exposition upheld it against the opponents of His time (Epist., 5; 6; 7. P.L. 203 col. 40-44, 52-56, 62-65).

It was also taught by Augustine (4 Trin., n. 15-17. P.L. 42, 898-899. Compare Arnobius Junior, in Ps., 27. P.L. 53, 360; Leo the Great, Serm. 54, c. 2. P.L. 54, 519-520). St. Bonaventure (3 D. 16, art. I, q. 3), St. Thomas (3 S. 47, 1), Cajetan (in h. l.) and Suarez (De Incarnatione, t. 1, disp. 46, s. 1, n. 3), and later theologians generally, follow St. Augustine.[52] The voluntariety therefore extended to the Passion—which was of a nature to lead to death yet might have been prevented by Christ from leading to it—and to the death which, while it was the connatural termination of the Passion, yet need not have terminated it, had Christ willed otherwise. It rested, therefore, with Christ that the Passion should happen at all, and that it should be death-inducing. Looked at from every aspect, therefore, the immolation was free.

But an act of the will, even with such an all-embracing ambit, does not suffice to constitute a sacrificial offering. There must be something more. It must carry with it a direction of the gift to God, and this direction must be outwardly manifested. For an offering is the active tender of a gift; and a sacrificial offering must be sensible, that is, in a manner plain to the senses. Hence modern theologians very wisely lay stress on this external character of the offering, taught explicitly by the earlier writers. Thus Franzelin speaking of the "voluntary submission to the torments and death AND THE DIRECTION OF THE OFFERING OF CHRIST HIMSELF TO THE FATHER, remarks that it was essential "that the intention should be made manifest by an outward act," (De Verbo Incarnato, th. 50). And Gihr: "The priestly activity and self-sacrifice of our Saviour were first of all in His spirit and in His heart, but it did not remain interior and invisible, for Christ's Heart's desire and will to sacrifice Himself appeared in outward act" (op. cit., p. 38). Pesch is even more explicit: "In the sacrifice of Christ we have a sensible offering made to God .... For Christ offered Himself immaculate. This offering is not merely an inward intention, it is also external and sensible" (De Verbo Incarnato, 2, n. 545).

Possibly an objection may be raised from Cajetan; He writes: "For in sacrifices which consist in action, the sacrificial rite is external, as in the sacrifices of animals and of the altar. But in the sacrifices which consist in suffering, the sacrificial rite is to be found in the interior action, wherein a person offers His suffering of His own free will. And thus Christ offered His sacrifice by an interior action, while the outward action of His executioners was not sacred, it was rather a dreadful sacrilege" (in 3 S. 48, 3).

But this solitary teaching of Cajetan would leave us in the untenable position that it could be said that Christ did not offer sacrifice in the strict meaning of the word at all. There would have been no outward sacrificial action whatever, and hence no visible sacrament or sacred sign of the invisible sacrifice. For an obviously cogent reason, therefore, we must reject this teaching of Cajetan: that the sacrificial action of Christ was merely internal.

Admittedly, then, the sacrificial action of Christ must have been of necessity external. And now we arrive at the very heart of our subject. Where or when did Christ perform that voluntary and active dedication of Himself to the worship of God as Victim, SENSIBLY, LITURGICALLY, RITUALLY (Chap. 1) ? Our question is: BY WHAT EXTERNAL ACT DID CHRIST ASSUME THE BEARING OF A PRIEST towards His Passion, BY WHAT RITE DID He OFFER THE SACRIFICE? What did He do by way of sacrifice whence a victim would result? Theologians have tried to find in the actions and words of Christ, from the garden to the Cross, some indications of this sacrificial activity. Many have remarked, for example, that it was in order to show the voluntariety of His Passion and death that He prostrated the soldiers in the garden, or, when at the very moment of His death, He cried in a loud voice.

Thus St. Ephraem (Evangelii concordantis expositio, Moesinger, 1876, p. 2 36) : "They were laid prostrate before Him forcibly, in order to show them that of His own free will He delivered Himself to them. " St. Thomas similarly following Chrysostom: "He made manifest His power, when His onrushing enemies fell backwards before Him on the ground. By this let the faithful learn that it was of His own free will that He was taken. He offered because He willed" (in Joann, XVIII, lect. I, 6). Some point to His cry: "In order to show that the Passion inflicted on Him by violence did not seize His Soul from Him, Christ kept the natural strength of His Body, so that even at the moment of His death, He cried out with a loud voice" (3 S. 47, 1, 2m). Suarez says that they were laid prostrate: "Lest it should be thought that He had fallen from His Majesty and power, or that His Passion was unwilling, and that He was compelled to suffer. " And that He cried out in a loud voice in order to show "that He was the Lord of life and death, and that it was not from necessity but freely, that He submitted to death, which He could easily prevent" (ibid., disp. 38, sect I, n. 9).

All this does certainly go to show, and clearly show, His free will in accepting the Passion and enduring it; there is not, however, the slightest indication of directing the gift to God, there is nothing whatever to compel us to see in Christ a Victim given over to God's ownership, or consecrated to the divine worship. Was it not possible for Christ to exercise these two actions in the garden and on the Cross, and yet not to offer sacrifice, dying though He was? Suppose these two actions had not taken place, then would there be no sacrifice of Christ? Such a thing has never been suggested. In respect of the Passion of Christ, it has never been imagined, that Christ was Priest according to the order of Melchisedech, at the very moment when He prostrated the soldiers, or when He cried with a loud voice at the moment of His death. Adorable and salutary though these actions of our Lord may be, yet they did not imply any proper specific exercise of the new and eternal priesthood.

While admitting that these two actions of our Lord do not imply any sacerdotal act, possibly one may look elsewhere. There are the words, for instance, at the moment of His death: Father, into thy hands I commend my spirit. Quoting them, Eusebius Emisenus writes: "The Spirit has gone above and the Body is on the Cross for us. For like a lamb He offered all that was corporeal in Him" (Fragmentum primum. P.G. 86, 541). But when we consider these words, we might weigh carefully the wise remark of Suarez: "Offering on the Cross Christ did not utter any words [expressive of sacrificial action]. If we could imagine any phrase of His of that sort, it undoubtedly would be: Into thy hands, O Lord, I commend my spirit. But these are words of beseeching rather than of offering, " (De Eucharistia disp. 75, s. 2).[53] Apart from all this it should not be forgotten that the sacrificial offering is pragmatic, it must be in action, and not merely in words (although the action in which the offering consists can be accomplished in words, as we shall see later).

Possibly it might be argued that the sacrificial offering is in the words of the Lord in the garden: not my will but thine be done. As a matter of fact, Albert Stoeckl (Das Opfer nach seinem Wesen und nach seiner Geschichte. Mogunt, 1861, p. 379380) did think that a form of offering was to be found in the words of our Lord: "Father, not my will, but thine be done. These were words of free oblation, with which the Saviour began His Passion, and impressed on it the character of sacrifice. " But in the first place there is no pragmatic offering in mere words, we have remarked that even if the words declare an offering it is not thereby pragmatic. Secondly, as they stand, the words are not words of offering. The offering must be free, it must be in the absolute disposal of the offerer; in other words no obligation to present the gifts to God. But here Christ speaks words of consent to some apparently inevitable law: If it be possible, let this chalice pass .... nevertheless, etc .... . If it may not pass .... thy will be done. Finally, the ancient Fathers and Theologians did not at any time see in these words anything pertaining to sacrificial action. It is not credible that it was left to our time to discover here the formal element of the sacrifice of Christ.

Moreover, when we consider all the words, actions and gestures in the garden and on the Cross, we have still to answer the question: without them, would there be no sacrifice? On the other hand, notwithstanding these words, actions and gestures, is it not possible for the sacrificial action to be lacking, as it certainly was lacking when St. Stephen said: Receive my spirit?

Or we might look to the complexus of words, movements, and gestures of our Lord through the whole course of the Passion. Throughout all, the evidence of self-surrender to death for our salvation in obedience to divine ordinance is clear. Here we have more than sufficient indications of sacrificial intention and trend. But, could not all this from the garden to the Cross be the same, and yet no sacrifice offered?[54] Do we not find the same or similar in the martyrs of every age both before and after Christ, and yet their death was not a sacrifice, except in the broad or metaphorical sense? Now SACRIFICE MUST BE: IN ITSELF PLAINLY EVIDENT AS SACRIFICE, because sacrifice is in the nature of a sign—a pragmatic locution signifying an invisible thing; before all else therefore it should be self-evident. Now nothing is self-evidently a sacrifice—hence an adequate sign—hence a sacrifice at all—if it is wholly indeterminate in the line of sacrificial being. But anything that could be just the same if it were not a sacrifice is certainly so indeterminate. Therefore the Passion of our Lord is not sufficiently specified as a sacrifice (properly so called) by this complexus of events.

That our Lord did at times enunciate the sacrificial character of His Passion (for instance, I sanctify myself), or that the Scriptures proclaimed or the Fathers [passim] declared it, has no bearing on the present question. Declarations of this kind did not make it a sacrifice; they were made because it was a sacrifice. Therefore, it is a sacrifice apart from these declarations of fact, and if so, it must be evident as a sacrifice, because as we have said, it is of the essence of sacrifice to be of itself discernible.

Since then, neither these particular events, nor the general complexus of the Passion of our Lord FROM THE GARDEN TO THE CROSS, give of themselves any indication of the essential form or character of a sacerdotal offering, we must look for this elsewhere. We shall find it where the Scripture clearly shows it, and where the Fathers and early Theologians constantly recognized it. We shall treat of it in the following chapter.[55]


CHAPTER 3 : THE OFFERING OF THE PASSION ENACTED BY CHRIST IN THE SUPPER

We propose to prove in sections I to IV that Christ as Priest, consecrating in the Supper the image of His Passion, offered to God the reality of His Passion. This will be shown as follows: we shall study the Supper in the light of

(1) The Passion, I;
(2) The ancient covenant and the ancient pasch, II;
(3) The "Epistle to the Hebrews, " III;
(4) The promise of the Eucharist, IV.

Further, our argument will be confirmed in V from certain circumstances of the Supper.[56]

§1. The Supper and the Passion

A. From Scripture

St. Matthew, XXVI, 26-29. St. Mark, XIV, 22-25. St. Luke, XXII, 15-20 2 Cor., XI, 23-26.

15. And He said to them, with desire have I desired to eat this pasch with you, before I suffer. 16. For I say to you, that from this time I will not eat it, till it be fulfilled in the kingdom of God. 17. And having taken the chalice, He gave thanks, and said: Take and divide it among you: for 18. I say to you that I will not drink of the fruit of the vine, till the kingdom of God come.

26. And while they were at supper, Jesus took bread and blessed and brake, and said: take ye and eat. This is My Body. 22. And whilst they were eating, Jesus took bread and blessing, broke and gave to them, and said, take ye, this is My Body. 19. (a) And taking bread, He gave thanks, and brake, and gave to them, saying: this is My Body, (b) which is given for you. Do this for a commemoration of Me. 23. For I have received from the Lord, that which also I delivered to you, that the Lord Jesus Christ the same night in which He was betrayed, took bread. 27. And taking the chalice He gave thanks, and gave to them saying: drink ye all of this. 23. And having taken the chalice, giving thanks, He gave it to them, and they all drank of it. 20. In like manner the chalice also, after He had supped, saying: this is the chalice the new testament in My Blood, which shall be shed for you. 24. And giving thanks, broke and said: take ye and eat; this is My Body which shall be delivered for you: do this for a commemoration of Me. 28. For this is My Blood of the new testament, which shall be shed for many unto the remission of sins

24. And He said to them: this is My Blood of the new testament, which shall be shed for many.

25. In like manner the chalice also, after He had supped, saying: this chalice is the new testament in My Blood: this do ye, for the commemoration of Me. 29. And I say to you, I will not drink from henceforth of this fruit of the vine until the day when I shall drink it with you new in the kingdom of My Father. 25. Amen I say to you that I will drink no more of the fruit of the vine, until the day when I shall drink it new in the kingdom of God.

26. For as often as you shall eat this bread, and drink the chalice, you shall show the death of the Lord until He come.

If these Supper narratives are examined, we see immediately that some kind of bloody death is placed before us in the words and things which designate the Body and Blood separately. For the separate mention and representation of the Body and Blood, and in particular the indication of the Blood as shed, of the Body as given, obviously imply a slaying.

Secondly, a propitiatory intent is added in the words "for many" (Matth., V. 27) and still more in the words "which shall be shed for many" (Mark, V. 24); "for you" (2 Cor., V. 24); more especially with the addition of the clause "unto the remission of sins" (Matth., V. 27).

From all this it follows that some sacrificial action is accomplished, in such manner that, though no blood-shedding is enacted, some blood-shedding is implied. That is, the Passion of Christ is placed before us, implied in the bloodless rite, with some kind of propitiatory benefit.

We are now to prove more distinctly that a bloodless offering of an immolation in blood is contained in these expressions.

I say then in the first place: that there is merely a representative slaying of Christ in the Supper.

I say secondly: that in this representation of the slaying to come, there is an offering of Christ.

I say thirdly: that this offering is not representative only, or apparent only, but that It is real and present.

I say fourthly: that the offering of the victim is made with a view to the real immolation, which is represented as future.

In a word: Christ is here and now offered to an immolation, in the image of that immolation.

First Statement: There is merely a representative slaying

The words pronounced over the bread and wine express death, and they express death in blood. But it is evident that in the actual time in which Christ is speaking, though there is the presence of the Body and Blood, still no slaying is enacted. The slaying of Christ is represented, therefore, though it is not effected. In the Supper, then, was no immolation of Christ; it was merely by similitude, or a representative immolation, consisting in the symbolic virtue, which is given to the visible species by the words designating the Body as delivered to death, and the Blood as flowing from the Body.

Second Statement: There is an offering

To constitute an offering it is sufficient, as we have already said, that the will, directive of the gift to God, should be expressed in a sensible rite.

Now the rite in the Supper appears wholly voluntary. Christ not only approaches it of His own free will, but He even accomplishes it gladly,[57] and commands His apostles to repeat it.

Specifically, He indicates His freedom by renewing the covenant, or testament (for a contract must as a matter of course be voluntary); and giving in particular is a proof both of liberty and of liberality.

The direction of the gift to God is shown in the previous thanksgiving and blessing on the gifts and presents (that is, on the bread and wine) as eucharisteria, gifts, that is, of God to be surrendered to God; it is shown particularly in the surrender of His Body, made not indeed to the apostles, but for the apostles, and made undoubtedly as a Victim to God; it is shown in the shedding of His Blood, for the apostles, for many even, unto the remission of sins, for which in the justice of God we were condemned to punishment, which the expiatory Victim removes from us, paying the price to God for us. Hence there was most decidedly a direction of the gift and the price to God, to gratify and appease Him.

Third Statement: There is a real present offering

There really are here both an apparent offering and a real offering. There is the apparent offering of the bread and wine, there is the real offering of the Body and Blood. I mean by this that Christ outwardly appears to be offering to God the eucharisteria of bread and wine, after the manner of Melchisedech. "For when He showed to God and the Father the bread and wine which He held in His hands, He appeared to be offering and dedicating them as gifts to Him" (Nicholas Cabasilas, Expositio Liturgiae, c. 2. P.G. 150, 377), as was said above. But He did not offer those things which in the moment of the sacramental Supper were not actually there, since Christ did not say: This is bread, He said This is my body; He did not say: this is wine, He said This is my blood. He did not offer bread, therefore, because it was not there; nor did He offer wine, because it was not there; if He did offer anything, He offered what He said was there: His own Body and His own Blood. The offering of bread and wine, then, was apparent only; in it the offering of the Body and Blood was hidden from the senses, but it was open to the eyes of faith. This latter offering, therefore, was not like the former, a mere effigy of some more secret giving; it was itself substantially a true and real giving.

Again, this offering of the Body and Blood was so really true that it was not merely foretold or promised, it was there and then effected. That is, Christ actually in that very moment was given into the ownership and keeping of God: a present offering was enacted.

There is a twofold proof of this.

In the first place: the Body is not said to be about to be given, it is given now.[58] Therefore the giving or the surrender of the reality to God takes place now, and in this the offering consists.

It is proved in the second place from the fact that (1) under the concept of offering there is accomplished some propitiatory action de praesenti, which itself (2) shows that this offering is made in the present.

(1) That a propitiatory action is here and now accomplished is gathered in three ways.

First, in general, from the present participles applied everywhere (in the original Greek)

"which is given for you" to uper umwn didomenon (Luke, XXII, 19),
"which is shed for many" to ekxunnomenon uper pollwn (Mark, XIV, 24),
"which is shed for many unto the remission of sins" to peri pollwn ekxhunomenon eis afesin amartiwn (Matth., XXVI, 28)

These verses show amply that something is now done for us, that something has now taken place that is beneficial for us, that some salutary result is now effected, that propitiation is now made.

Secondly, and in a special way, from the fact that not the Blood only, but the chalice itself is said to be shed for us; "this is the chalice .... which shall be shed (in original Greek, rather 'is shed') for you" (Luke, XXII, 20), the propitiatory role of the chalice, as such, can only be referred to the present time, since from now on there is no future occasion in the course of the Passion for the shedding of the chalice.[59]

Thirdly, indirectly, by reason of the New Testament, which is here and now sealed, as will be shown below, whence it follows that our propitiation is here and now made.

(2) That propitiation, as immolative and present, denotes that the offering is made in the present must be maintained as certain, because the propitiatory virtue of itself is inherent in the sacrifice, not in a mere foretelling or preliminary figure or promise, but in the very sacrificial action, wherein the Victim is actually offered to be immolated or offered as immolated.[60]

Fourth Statement: The offering is directed to that real immolation which is represented as future

This is proved indirectly and directly.

Indirectly, because had not Christ been offered to that real immolation which is represented as future, He must be regarded as offered to a mere figment of an immolation, which is not the reality of immolation. But there is no true sacrifice unless there is an offering of a victim as already really immolated or to be immolated, and, if there is no sacrifice, no propitiatory influence can result. But we have already shown that propitiatory influence has here and now resulted; therefore, an offering is made of Christ as to be really immolated at the Passion.

Directly, in two ways.

For (1) it is clear by the very fact that the Blood is shed by Christ in figure before God,[61] and the Body is slain in figure with a view to the remission of sins, that the Body is deputed to a real slaying and the Blood is deputed to a real shedding for us. For in the symbolic shedding of the Blood, in the symbolic slaying of the Body, in the symbolic death of the Flesh of our Lord, and that actually propitiatory, there is not merely promised a true slaying of the Body, a real shedding of the Blood; not alone is the Victim vowed[62] to God, but it is now actually made sacred to God, in view of that future true shedding and true slaying.

Therefore, just as Christ is here and now given over into the ownership of God, so, too, here and now He is dedicated to the Passion. In that representative immolation, therefore (call it symbolic, sacramental, mystical),[63] the offering of Christ to the immolation in blood is actually made.

Later on this will become clearer (p. 215), as it will be shown that the Body of Christ was His altar. When Christ, therefore, sacramentally sheds His own Blood on His own altar, He is thereby (Chap. 1) acting as the High Priest offering to God in the mystery the life of His Victim.

(2) It is clear from the fact that Christ said that His Body is given for us. This could have only one meaning, that His Body is given over to death.

Thus from every aspect we are impelled to the conclusion that the Body and Blood of Christ in the bloodless imitation of the Passion was pledged before God to the endurance of the Passion in blood; in other words, that in that rite of mystic immolation, the actual Victim of the Passion, as Victim, was offered to God by Christ as Priest.[64]

Recapitulation

In the Supper, Christ appeared as though giving bread and wine to God; and He showed thereby that He was giving something to God: not what was apparent, but what was hidden; not bread, but what He said He was holding in His hands in the place of bread, namely His own Body; not wine, but what He said He mingled in the chalice in the place of wine, His own Blood. He gave His Body; He gave His Blood; He gave each separately, as far as was indicated, by way of signifying, in the appearances and in the words. He gave Himself in the effigy of death; He gave Himself to death for us, and by death He gave Himself as Victim to God.

When Christ is said to have given Himself as Victim to God, the meaning is not only that such surrender of Himself was made known by Christ in words. Indeed in the sacrifice of the Redemption, just as in every true sacrifice generally, the ritual offering, significative of the internal oblative will, did not consist just in the mere oral expression of that will, as, for instance, in the words "I offer" or the like; it consisted in A LITURGICAL RITE applied by the liturgus himself, wherein, in respect of the Victim to be immolated, the actual intention would be pragmatically expressed of handing over and consecrating the gift to God.[65] The Eucharistic rite was indeed a certain complexus of things and words, but it was such that the words alone of themselves would not perfect the offering made to God, but would only indicate (and effect) the presence of the Body and Blood under the species of bread and wine to propitiate for sins. This presence implied by the words constituted the oblative rite in the Supper, wherein Christ was actually given over to God as Victim, deputed to an expiatory death for us.

B. Our Argument Is Confirmed By Tradition

Before entering on a discussion of the teaching of the Fathers we must make one remark by way of preface. Apart from controversies with heretics, the Fathers as a rule did not put forward their teaching in so didactic and peremptory a manner as to leave the intellect no choice, nor did they express their meaning so clearly as to allow no way of escape. Hence outside a few passages which of themselves might attest the opinion of an author, a theologian is bound to set down what is more obviously the trend of the teaching, or what the actual words present to us and naturally suggest. Now if all the testimonies, with no clear exception, converge on the same point, a powerful argument is available as to the mind of the Fathers, based on that "cumulative probability, " which Cardinal Newman shows can transcend all mere opinion, and beget certainty; in other words, the only explanation of this universal and consistent unanimity is that the Fathers were convinced of this particular teaching. The certainty becomes all the greater if we find a like unanimity (as in matters Eucharistic we do) in the Liturgies. It will be well to keep this in mind in this chapter and in the others to follow until we arrive at the examination of the Mass; the Fathers have dwelt at greater length on the Mass, so that that chapter will reflect a clearer light back on to the discussion on the Supper.

(a) Indirect Testimony

I. The Fathers imply indirectly that the very sacrifice of the Passion was offered in the Supper, when, making the distinction between the act of sacrifice (or the offering) and the slaying (or mactation), they assign the latter to the deicide Jews, reserving the act of sacrifice to Christ consecrating the bread and wine in the Supper. Thus St. Ephraem (Hymni Azymorum, Hymn 2, ed. Lamy, t. I, p. 576-578) :

Str. 2.

"The Lamb of truth knowing that rejected priests and polluted sacrificers did not suffice for Him, became for His own body Priest and Prince of Sacrificers.

Str. 3.

"The sacrificers of the people slew the prince of sacrificers. "Our Sacrificer, become Victim, abolished the victims by His sacrifice, and spread His graces throughout the whole world."

Str. 5.[M1]

"No lamb is greater than the Lamb of heaven. "Since the priests were of the earth, and the Lamb was of heaven, He became both Victim and Priest for Himself."

Str. 6.

"Polluted priests were indeed unworthy to offer the immaculate Lamb, the pacific Victim, which brought peace to heaven and earth, reconciling all things in His Blood."

Str. 7.

He broke the bread in His hands for the sacrament of the sacrifice of His Body; He filled the chalice in the sacrament of the offering of His Blood. Priest of our propitiation, He offered the sacrifice for Himself."

Str. 8.

"He clothed Himself with the Priesthood of Melchisedech, the figure of Himself. He did not bring forth victims, but He offered bread and wine, the ancient priesthood is gone, libations are past."

II. Possibly the same doctrine is suggested when the suffering of martyrdom on our part is taken to be the perfection of the Eucharistic banquet: here there is apparently a confirmation, to a certain extent, that on the part of Christ the perfection of the Supper was the immolation of the Passion.

St. Augustine: "Let us see, He says, let us hear the Lord further: 'I will pay my vows in the sight of them that fear Him.' What are His vows? The sacrifice which He offered to God.[66] You know what sacrifice? The faithful know the vows which He paid before them that fear Him: for there follows: 'The poor eat and shall be filled. ' Blessed are the poor, because they eat that they may be filled: for the poor eat; those who are rich are not filled, because they are not hungry. The poor eat: hence there was the fisherman Peter, John another fisherman, James His brother and the publican Matthew. They were of the poor, who ate and were filled, suffering such things as those they fed on ('talia passi, qualia manducaverunt'). He gave His Supper, He Gave His Passion: He is filled, who imitates. The poor have imitated: for they have suffered so, that they followed in the footsteps of Christ" (in Ps., 21, 27. P.L. 36, 178).

III. The taking away of sin, which is the work of the Redemption, is at times attributed to the Supper itself. We have an example of this in St. Gregory Nazianzen, when among other incidents of the Jewish rite, He shows the typical significance of the circumstance that the lamb was to be eaten towards evening.

"The lamb will be eaten by us. And it will be eaten towards evening, because in the end of ages is the Passion of Christ: seeing that He too towards evening is partaker of the Sacrament with His disciples, dispelling the darkness of sin" (Or. 45 in sanctum Pascha, n. 16. P.G. 36, 644).

He explains the late time of the Passion by the evening hour of the Supper, and He also says that the Supper itself accomplished the remission of sins.[67]

The same conclusion is arrived at, I believe, if death is said to be destroyed by the Supper (because Christ, as St. Paul says, overcame death and destroyed sin in the same sacrifice). Cyril of Alexandria (De adoratione in spiritu et veritate, 3. P.G. 68, 285-293) [68] expresses this clearly, in the example of David staying the hand of the Exterminating Angel by the victim, which, bought at a great price, He offered on the altar, on the threshing floor.

David built the altar small, it was enlarged later by Solomon (II Kings, XXIV, II foll.). Cyril develops the allegory, showing that not only was death destroyed at the moment when our Lord partook of the Supper, but, also, that on the very Eucharistic altar a sacrifice was offered by our Lord whereby death was overcome: for, He says, it was offered on an altar, which later as it were grew, until gradually the Eucharistic celebration was spread throughout the nations.

The victory over death in the Supper is found in writers of the Middle Ages. The following is a chant in a prayer Oratio ad communionem (A. H. 51, 297), in an English manuscript prayer book of the eighth or ninth century:

"For thy all-powerful Flesh is food indeed;
And thy Blood, O Jesus, the true drink of the faithful
By this sacred mystery thou didst redeem us from death
That we may live in thee, O Lord, in faith and sobriety.
Deign therefore we beg of thee, that we may be
Partakers of this holy mystery, to the glory of thy name."

But at a much earlier date, we find in the most ancient of our anaphorae, what I believe to be the expression of the same idea; I refer to the passage which introduces the Supper narrative:

"And who when He was given over to His voluntary Passion, in order to overcome death, to break the ties of the devil, to trample hell underfoot, to illuminate the just, to come to the end, and to manifest His Resurrection, taking bread and giving thanks to thee, said: 'Take ye and eat, this is my body which shall be broken for you,'" etc. (Latin Verona Fragments, ed. Hauler, 1900, p. 106-107).

That is to say, the ends enumerated, though all reflect the Redemption, seem nevertheless to be referred to the actual consecration of the Eucharist, as the cause of it all. Christ, as it were, willed to celebrate the rite, in order to redeem us from death, from the power of the devil, from the pains of hell, and to restore us to light and life.

IV. We find ample confirmation of this in the Fathers. At times they computed the three days of the death of our Lord from the Supper hour. As He was given in food as one already dead, His death was to be regarded apparently as having already taken place. Possibly this is not a satisfactory explanation of the three days of death, but, as regarding the significance of the Supper, it is an absolutely true tradition. For the Sacrifice of the Passion commenced in the Supper. Our Lord offers Himself to undergo death, and gives Himself as Victim of the anticipated death.

Thus Aphraates:

"He who took His own Body in food, and His own Blood in drink, is reputed with the dead. Before He was crucified, the Lord with His own hands gave His own Body to be eaten and His own Blood to be drunk .... . From the time when He gave His Body in food and His Blood in drink, three days and three nights elapse" (Demonstratio, XII, De Paschate, n. 6 and 7. P.S., part 1, tom. I, col. 517 and 520).

St. Ephraem, the friend of Aphraates, in the Evangelii concordantis expositio (ed. Moesinger, p. 221 and 277), gives this reckoning not once only but twice, though He also speaks in this same work, just as He does in His other works, of the other reckoning which commences with the death of Christ:

"From that moment wherein He broke His Body for His Disciples, and gave His Body to the Apostles, three days are computed, wherein He was accounted with the dead" (p. 221).

"From the day in which He gave them His Body and Blood, this triduum is consummated" (p. 267).[69]

St. Gregory of Nyssa, discussing the question who commenced the sacrifice of the Redemption, was it Christ, or Judas, or the Jews or Pilate, makes use of this reckoning more remarkably than all the other Fathers, to claim the Great Action for Christ:

"He who disposeth all things by His power does not await for the impending betrayal, nor for the onslaught of the Jews, nor the iniquitous sentence of Pilate, allowing as it were their malice to be the origin and the cause of man's redemption, but in His wisdom He opens the way by a sacrifice ineffable and invisible to men, and He offered himself for us an oblation and a victim, priest and at the same time that lamb of God who taketh away the sin of the world. When did He do this? At the very moment when He openly showed that His own Body was to be received as food, because the sacrifice of the lamb was now perfected. For if the Body of the Victim were in life, it would not have been suitable for food. And therefore when He granted to His disciples that they should eat His Body and drink His Blood, at that very moment, By His own will, in celebrating the mystery by His power, His Body was ineffably and invisibly offered in sacrifice. The Soul, too, residing in His breast, was in the disciples (in whom the authority of the Dispenser placed It, together with the divine power united to It). If a person computes the time therefore from that hour wherein the sacrifice was offered to God by the High Priest, who invisibly and ineffably immolated His own lamb for the sin of all mankind, He will not be departing from the truth" (Or. I in resurrectionem, P.G. 46, 612).

It is abundantly evident that this separation of the Soul from the Body must not be interpreted in St. Gregory of Nyssa in a realistic sense, as if the visible Body of Christ were really from this moment without the soul.[70] In Aphraates and Ephraem, Christ was only reputed as dead; here too Christ is looked upon as dead in a moral sense, from the fact that by the Eucharistic communion His Soul was in the disciples, yet in such a way that His Body was visibly elsewhere, or vice versa. The death itself, which was the future term of the sacrifice now commenced by Christ, was sufficiently denoted and made present thereby. For that Christ was partaken of in food, was an effect of the death, as offered; and again the partaking supplied an indication of the death to which Christ was given over. The Supper was partaken of, therefore, for the reason that Christ had already offered the sacrifice of His death: whence it followed that, so far as His will was concerned, the sacrifice, His actual death, was now irrevocably effected. This is a most appropriate and convincing illustration of our explanation of the Supper.[71]

After the time of St. Gregory of Nyssa we come across a very remarkable specimen of this teaching in the "Commentaries" of Procopius, both on Genesis and on Exodus.

He is asking the question, why it was that the paschal lamb in the Law was to be slain towards evening, not at noon; His answer is: that this was so because Christ would begin that paschal sacrifice of our Redemption in the Supper, and it was to be completed on the Cross:

"Why then is the paschal lamb not slain in the sixth hour but rather towards evening? Let us turn to the writings of the New Testament and we shall find a fitting answer. Those who crucified Christ did so at the sixth hour. But Jesus our High Priest immolated the lamb which He took towards the evening, when He celebrated the paschal banquet with His disciples and imparted to them the sacred mysteries. (When the Law was brought to an end, the beginnings of the Gospel were established.) And He who within was Priest, and outwardly Lamb, offered himself. If we place the beginning of the sacrifice of Christ in the supper, we shall keep to the number of three days and nights, during which in the type of Jonas He lay in the tomb. But in this reckoning, the day of the Resurrection will also be included .... . Christ as sinless Victim offered Himself to God and the Father in the odour of sweetness; and as Lamb He was immolated for our sins on the altar of the Cross" (in Ex., XII, 5. P.G., 87, 566-567).[72]

In reference to the Creation, discussing whether the day came before the night or vice versa, He says:

"Those who say that the day came before the night are apparently in opposition to the order of the feasts and in the first place to the triduum of our Lord's burial and Resurrection. For the Law places the night before the day always and everywhere, as is evident in the feast of the azymes .... . For a like reason three days and three nights must begin and end in the Passion and Resurrection of our Lord. The day wherein our Saviour suffered may be added to the previous evening of the Parasceve. The Sunday may be added to the third night when He arose from the dead" (in Genes., I, 5. P.G. 87, 56).[73]

V. So intimately are the Supper and the Passion interwoven that by the Eucharistic rite the Blood of Christ is said to be deputed to the real shedding: from it, as it were, the Lord was given over to death. Thus St. Hilary asks whether His Passion was involuntary because He said, "Let this chalice pass from me."

"Was He unwilling to suffer? On the contrary earlier He had consecrated the Blood of His Body to be shed unto the remission of sins" (in Matth., c. 31, n. 7. P.L. 9, 1068).

This passage is quoted by the Eucharistic Doctor, St. Paschasius Radbertus, cited later in this chapter.

VI. The sacrifice of the Supper and the Passion is so indivisibly one that early writers said that the sacrament of the Eucharist was offered by Christ on the Cross. Thus Albert the Great:

"[This sacrament] is productive of special grace before God: for offered on the Cross it finds special grace for all men" (Liber de sacram. euchar., Dist. 1, c. 4).

And if as a fact the death was offered in the Eucharistic Supper, it was in the death that the Eucharistic celebration was brought to perfection; hence the Supper would ultimately derive its nature as a sacrifice from the immolation in blood to which it looked forward.[74] Hence it could be said that the Eucharist was celebrated ("litata") on the Cross.

Thus in the fifteenth century John Mauburnus, in His Carmen in septem nomina [75] sacrament1 Corporis et sanguinis Domini Jesu (A. H. 48, 523; compare 15, 22), says on the sixth name, sacrifice:[76]

"Hail sacrifice offered on the Cross, Hail, pontifical sacrifice of Christ."

Bede [77] (in Luc, XXII, 15. P.L. 92, 595) and Amalarius [78] (De eccles. offic., 1, 15. P.L. 105, 1032) say in the same sense that the Eucharist was consecrated on the Cross. Thomas Walden,[79] that it was consecrated with the Passion. St. Quodeusvult,[80] that the Eucharistic Flesh of Christ was provided ("confectam") in the Passion.

St. Thomas never really discussed the sacrificial character of the Supper expressly; still it would seem that He has not left us without some guidance.

For in the Commentary on the Fourth Book of the Sentences, explaining the letter of the twelfth distinction, which is: "Is Christ daily immolated, or was He immolated once only?" the holy Doctor distinguishes two things in the sacrifice whereby Christ once made propitiation for us:

First, what was done by the Jews to Christ, with the corresponding torture of Christ;

Secondly, what was done by Christ towards God, namely, to offer and to sacrifice.

He states that the first is not repeated [81] daily by us in the sacrifice of Christ; but that the second is repeated: namely, that the offering and the act of sacrifice can be made daily by us, as truly as it was done by Christ once. The holy Doctor assigns two reasons, which include one another, why this can be done by us: one pertains to the victim, the other to the method of offering. As pertaining to the victim, the reason assigned is that the victim of that sacrifice which Christ offered is perpetual (this reason will be examined later in this work); as pertaining to the manner of offering, the reason assigned is that the manner of offering once made by Christ was such that we can also offer daily under Christ our Head. This is the passage:

"It must be known that all those words which import a relation of the Jews to Christ, and the punishment of Christ, are not said to be done daily. For we do not say that Christ is daily crucified and slain: because the action of the Jews and the punishment of Christ are transient. But those which imply a relation of Christ to God the Father are said to be done daily, as to offer, to sacrifice, and the like, because that victim is perpetual, and it was once offered by Christ in the way that it can also be daily offered by His members."

Now if we daily do, when we offer, what Christ did, when He once offered the sacrifice of His death, if the manner of our offering follows the manner of the offering of our Lord, will not Christ be considered as having offered His own death in the Eucharistic rite?

Now we arrive at the more direct testimonies.

(b) Direct Testimony

I. Hesychius, a priest of Jerusalem,[82] expressly states this teaching, between the years 430 and 450, in His commentary in Leviticum 8, book 2 (P.G. 93), declaring (1) that not only did Christ offer His sacrifice in the Supper (Lev., VIII, 22), Moses offered the second ram:

"Why is the second ram now spoken of here? Because the Lord first partaking in the Supper of the figurative lamb [83] with His apostles, afterwards offered His sacrifice, and in the second place slew Himself like the lamb" [84] col. 882). But (2) there especially He celebrated It ("Christ celebrated the usual Supper of the paschal festivity with His disciples. Then in a most special way Christ celebrated His own sacrifice, col. 882). (3) When having partaken of and distributed the chalice, He pours out His own blood on His own body, as it were on an altar (For drinking Himself and giving His apostles to drink, He then sheds the intelligible [85] Blood on the altar, namely His own Body, col. 885); (4) By the sacramental sprinkling of which He offered His passion for us (For Christ Himself by the sprinkling of His own Blood for our salvation offered His Passion for us, " col. 885); (5) Bringing in propitiation now at the supper (For on that day on which He gave the mystery of the Supper, on that same day He obtained pardon or propitiation, that is the remission of sins, saying: 'This is my blood of the new testament, which shall be shed for many unto the remission of sins, '" col. 888).

Hesychius, too, making the distinction between the offering and the immolation, remarks (1) that Christ was offered by no one but Himself; (2) that He could not even have been immolated by others had He not surrendered Himself to the Passion; (3) that He surrendered Himself by the sacramental immolation which He made in the Supper:

"For no one offered Him; nor could He be immolated, had He not surrendered Himself to the Passion. For this reason not only did He say: 'I have the power to lay down my life, and I have the power to take it up again,' but anticipating even, He immolated Himself at the Supper of the apostles: a fact which is known to those who understand the virtue of the mysteries" (in Lev., 4, 1. I, col. 821).

Finally, speaking directly and explicitly of the sacrifice of our Saviour, whereby salvation was purchased for Jews and Gentiles, He says definitely:

"For He immolated His own Flesh, He was made High Priest of His own sacrifice in Sion: when He gave the chalice of the new testament in His Blood" (in Lev., XVI, 11-13, l. 5. P.G. 93, 993).

Similarly explaining in another passage how "The Lord will send forth the sceptre of His power, " that is the Cross, "out of Sion, " that is in the Cenacle:

"For there, He says, the Only-Begotten immolated Himself, there He commenced His passion (in Ps., 109, 2. P.G. 93, 1324).

The teaching of Hesychius, then, cannot be questioned; He dwelt at greater length on the explanation of our Lord's Supper than the other Fathers.[86]

When other writers say that Christ offered His Blood in the Supper, what do they mean but that the offering of His life was made by Him, or, what is the same thing, the offering of His death and of His life-giving Passion? Among ourselves when we say that a man offered His blood for His country or for His friends, do we not mean that He gave up His life and handed himself over to death? This, then, must be the meaning of the words of St. Ambrose: "We saw the Prince of priests coming to us; we saw Him and we heard Him [87] offering His Blood for us, (in Ps., 38, n. P.L. 14, 1051).[88]

The trend in the ancient Eastern Liturgies is something very similar. Christ is indeed said to be given up, but more truly to have given Himself up for the life and the salvation of the world: conveying as it were that in the Supper He surrendered Himself to God for us. We have in the very ancient Liturgy of St. James within the anaphora:

"Coming down from heaven, and Incarnate of the Holy Spirit and the Virgin Mary, Mother of God, He dwelt with the apostles, and having accomplished the whole economy of the salvation of our race, desiring, sinless though He was, to submit to a voluntary and life-giving death on the Cross for us sinners, 'on the night on which He was given up, ' nay on the night on which He gave Himself up for the life and the salvation of the world, taking bread into His holy and immaculate and sinless and immortal hands, and lifting up His eyes to heaven, and showing Himself to Thee God and the Father, giving thanks, consecrating, breaking, He gave to His holy disciples and apostles, saying: 'Take ye', " etc.

This is also presented in a shorter form in the very old Liturgy of Saint Mark:

"Jesus Christ on the night on which He gave Himself over for our sins, and submitted to death for all, reclining in the Flesh with His holy disciples and apostles, taking bread, " etc.

Later on in the ninth century there is a still shorter form in the Liturgy of the Greeks, both in St. Basil [89] and St. Chrysostom.[90]

In our own times the Syrians of Antioch use a shorter form, found in the anaphora called that of St. John the Evangelist [91]; so do the Greeks both Catholic and Schismatic in the liturgy of St. Basil [92]; in the liturgy of St. Chrysostom,[93] the same Greeks have a longer form.

Among our own ancestors in the West, the drink which Christ offered in the Supper was sung of as proffered from the wood of the Cross, for instance in the Prosa de corpore Christi, for Tuesday within the octave of Corpus Christi (A. H. 10, 40, from the Missale Suessionense, Paris, 1516) :

"May glory be on high from the memory of Christ,
Who gives the mysteries of the bread of life.
A virgin bore this bread; her Son
Offered the drink
Which He gave on the Sacred
Wood of the cross.

The Blood of the Cross therefore was offered by Christ in the Supper.

In the ancient Ambrosian rite, Christ is represented on Holy Thursday as having given Himself to His Passion, because He offered Himself as Victim in the sacrament:

"Can we despair of thy mercy, we who have been considered worthy to receive the high office of offering this great Victim to thee, that is the Body and the Blood of our Lord Jesus, who for the salvation of the world gave Himself to that holy and venerable passion? Who instituting the form of the sacrifice of salvation, first offered Himself as victim, and first taught that He should be offered"? (Canon antiquus missae ambrosianae in coena Domini, in Muratori, De rebus liturgicis dissertatio, c. 10, P.L. 74, 914).[94]

II. Moreover the Fathers and writers of the Church have left us these three points of doctrine:

Christ offered Himself once;
He offered Himself at the Supper;
He offered Himself to be immolated.

Clearly then Christ at the Supper offered Himself to the future immolation of the Passion. Cassiodorus leads the way for all the writers of a later age; He is speaking of the sacrifice offered after the manner of Melchisedech in bread and wine by our High Priest:—"'Thou art a priest forever according to the order of Melchisedech.' The Prophet also says that the Father made this promise to the Son. For to whom could it be truly and evidently applied but to our Lord and Saviour, who consecrated for our salvation His own Body And Blood in the giving of the bread and wine? As He says in the Gospel: 'Unless you eat of the flesh of the Son of Man and drink of His blood, you shall not have eternal life.' But let not the human mind see anything of blood-letting, anything corruptible in that Flesh and Blood .... but a life-giving and saving substance, the very Word made Flesh, whereby are given the remission of sins and the gifts of eternal life. The most just king instituted this order by a mystical similitude, when He offered the fruits of bread and wine to the Lord. For it is clear that the victims of cattle, which were of the order of Aaron, came to an end; and that instead of them the institution of Melchisedech remains, which is celebrated in the distribution of the sacraments throughout the whole world .... . Priest Christ is said to be pre-eminently, He who once offered Himself to be immolated for us." (Expositio in Psalterium Ps. 109, verse 5. P.L. 70, 796-797).

The unknown author of the Commentary on the Epistle to the Hebrews, erroneously attributed to Primasius, gives at greater length the same teaching as Cassiodorus, whom He follows almost word for word. After quoting from the Enarratio in Ps. 109 (n. 17, P.L. 37, 1460) of St. Augustine, He says: —"It must be remembered that Christ is not a Priest, because He is the Only-Begotten of God the Father from eternity, coeternal and consubstantial with Him, remaining true God with the Father, but because He was born of a Virgin, made Man in this latter age to offer the Victim which He offered for us, namely His own Flesh and Blood received by us. But there are various reasons why He is said to be a Priest according to the order of Melchisedech, and not according to the order of Aaron; and the first is because Melchisedech was not a priest according to the mandates of the Law, but according to the dignity of a unique priesthood, offering bread to God not the blood of brute animals: Christ was made Priest, not temporal but eternal, in the order of His Priesthood not offering legal victims, but, like Him, bread and wine, namely His own Flesh and Blood, so that He said: 'My flesh is meat indeed, and my blood is drink indeed.' He also committed these two gifts, that is bread and wine, to His Church to be offered in memory of Him: clearly then the sacrifice of cattle came to an end; it was of the order of Aaron, and the other which was of the order of Melchisedech remains instead, because Christ confirmed and taught the Church to hold it .... . There is also a third reason why Christ is said to be a Priest according to the order of Melchisedech, and not according to Aaron: namely because as there is but one reference in Sacred Scripture to Melchisedech and His priesthood, so too Christ once offered Himself to be immolated for us. (Ps. Primasius, in Epist. ad Hebraeos, V. 6, P.L. 68, 716-717).

Similarly Alcuin (in Epist. ad Hebr. V. 6, P.L. 100, 1033-1034) and Rabanus Maurus (in Epist. ad Hebr. V. 6, P.L. 112, 743).[95] And very beautifully St. Bruno of Grenoble:—" 'Thou art a priest. ' Truly this is applicable to Christ, who consecrated for us unto our salvation His Body and Blood in the giving of the bread and wine. Christ is properly called a Priest who once offered Himself to be immolated for us." (In Psalm 109, 4, P.L. 142, 408).

In fact, not only the Fathers, but the Liturgies also declare that our Lord offered Himself to be immolated, when He instituted the form of our sacrifice in the consecration of His Body and Blood:—" .... Standing round thy altars, O Lord of hosts, and glorying in the knowledge of thy immaculate Lamb, who offered Himself to be immolated for us, may we be nourished unto eternal life, by the celestial sacrifices in His Body And Blood, whereby we are redeemed from our sins." (Preface of the Mass for Wednesday [96] after Easter in the Gelasian Sacramentary, bk. 1, c. 48, P.L. 74, 1115).[97]

He offered Himself to be immolated, in order that we may offer Him immolated, and that we may be nourished with the Flesh and Blood of the Immolated.

Finally in a Chaldean anaphora, wrongly called by the schismatics that of Theodore of Mopsuestia, and by Catholics the Second (cf. Max Saxoniae, Missa Chaldaica, p. XVII.), there are extant the following words (their antiquity is apparent from the reading by the eternal Spirit), linking up the Supper and the Passion as one: "By the eternal Spirit He offered Himself immaculate to God, and sanctified us by the offering of His Body once made, and reconciled heaven and earth by the blood of His cross. Who was given up for our sins, and arose to justify us. Who with His apostles on the night on which He was betrayed, celebrated this great, tremendous, holy and divine mystery: taking bread, He blessed, etc .... . Behold O Lord, now too, this oblation is offered in Thy great and tremendous name." (Le Brun Explication de la Messe, vol. 3, 1778, p. 539-541).

He made the offering of His Body once; we are sanctified by that offering once made. Doing what He did in the Supper we make the same offering that He made. Conclude then: the undivided Action of our Redemption is in the Supper and in the Passion, because in the Supper Christ offered His own Body to the death in blood which He was to undergo on the Cross.

§2. The Supper and the Ancient Covenant and the Ancient Pasch

A. In Scripture

Long ago the Lord had entered into a covenant with the Hebrew nation. When the Law was promulgated, having offered the sacrifice of cattle, Moses sprinkled the blood on the people and said: This is the blood of the covenant which the Lord hath made with you (Exodus, XXIV, 8, and Hebr., IX, 20).[98] Thus the covenant was sealed by a sacrifice.

At the Supper, having consecrated the bread, Christ gives the chalice, with the words: This is my blood of the testament (Matthew and Mark). He actually calls it the "new testament. " This chalice is the new testament (Paul and Luke).

These passages certainly show that a new testament is being set up distinct from the old—the old has passed, the new has come. The compact is sealed with blood; can it be other than sacrificial? It was customary in ancient times for peoples to sanction even their everyday civil contracts with the sacrificial shedding of blood. Thus in profane writers we find such expressions as:[99] "They said that the treaty could be ratified in my blood" (Cicero, Pis 12, 28). "You did not wish to break the treaty concerning the agreement for the provinces ratified in my blood (Pro Sestio, 10, 14). "With the blood of Hannibal, I shall sanction the treaty with Rome" (Livy, 23, 8). But a compact with God must above all have the seal of sacrifice. But now we have a new sacrifice taking the place of the old: the old was ratified by the blood of victims, it was particularly incumbent, therefore, that for the new covenant there should be a new victim.[100]

It is quite evident, then, that here at the Supper a sacrifice is celebrated, for a new pact in blood between God and man is made and sealed. (Compare Batiffol, op. cit., p. 68; Riviere, Le Dogme de la Redemption, Ess. d'et. hist., p. 94; Lebreton, op. cit., col. 1565). But there can be no question that it was here at the Sacrifice of the Passion and in this sacrifice alone, that the new pact was struck. Because it was by the work of Redemption alone that Christ made peace between heaven and earth, reconciled us with God, and made us the heirs of the testament. But the work of Redemption belongs to the Passion. Therefore it is here, before the sufferings of the Passion, that the sacrifice of the Passion is celebrated.[101] Here and now Christ is given over to death, and all that our Priest does in the sacrificial action of the Last Supper is to make the bloodless offering of His own Blood to an actual shedding later. We arrive at the same conclusion when we compare the Supper and the ancient pasch. For the Lord, when He had taken the food of the pasch,[102] said: For I say to you, that from this time I will not eat it, till it be fulfilled in the kingdom of God (Luke XXII, 16); and having partaken of the ordinary wine cup, He added: for I say to you that I will not drink of the fruit of the vine, till the kingdom of God come (Luke, XXII, 18). None the less He at once commenced the new Supper of unleavened bread and wine. Imagine a person present at this scene. What other conclusion could He come to than this: that the kingdom of God had come here and now? That at long last the pasch was fulfilled? That it was fulfilled precisely in this bread and in this chalice which for the second time the Lord distributes to the disciples, having already finished the legal pasch?[103]

What, therefore, is implied in the other Evangelists, we find openly declared in St. Luke: that the Eucharistic Supper was the true Pasch, that it was the reality corresponding to figure, and hence the very Paschal Sacrifice of the true Lamb.

At any rate, there is no question that the real antitype of the legal pasch was the very sacrifice of the Passion in which the true Lamb was slain,[104] and in which finally took place the passing of the Lord to the Father. Hence St. Paul says: Christ our pasch is sacrificed (1 Cor, V, 7). The faithful always understood the paschal immolation of Christ to be the Passion of His death.

The paschal sacrifice of Christ, therefore, consists in the Supper and the Passion combined. That is to say, the Supper and the Death made up the one, unique, integral and perfect fulfillment of the figurative pasch; [105] and of this as really one we make the one commemoration, in the Mass, commemorating at once Christ supping and Christ dying.[106]

The fact that in the ancient Jewish pasch there were the slain lamb, and the azymes or unleavened bread, and the chalice, presents to us a most remarkable figure of the antitype—the sacrifice of Christ, which being offered and partaken of under the appearances of bread and wine, was to be completed with the death of Christ.[107]

Hence it is not surprising to find St. Paul (l. c.) interweaving (by the use of the word f or) the actual bloody immolation of our new Pasch with the remembrance of the unleavened bread.[108] Remember that He is writing here to Christians converted from paganism, hence not very conversant with Jewish symbolism, but as we know from 2 Cor., X, and XI, quite familiar with the Eucharistic teaching. He is recalling the memory of the Eucharistic Supper, by reason of which the teaching on the unleavened bread was necessarily well known to the Corinthians.[109] Hence the words interweaving the unleavened bread with the Passion are most appropriate. It reads as if the Apostle were saying: Think well of the meaning of the unleavened bread: it is the cleansing of all the vileness and filth of corruption and sin: Think well on it, I pray you. Remember that it was in unleavened bread that Christ offered the paschal sacrifice of His death—that death by which we were redeemed, so that redeemed now by the unleavened bread, we may live unleavened in Christ—that is, since by the sacrifice of Christ we are now delivered from the stain and the contagion of sin, by communion with Christ we may live in sinlessness and innocence.[110] St. Paul, therefore, commemorating the Passion with the Supper as one, implies that the one same paschal sacrifice of Christ was enacted both in the Supper and in the Passion: that is, that the Supper and the Passion are parts of the one sacrifice.

To this argument drawn from the Pasch, the following objection may be raised: the Supper and the Passion could be merged into one sacrificial celebration, one undivided fulfilment of the ancient pasch, without the sacrifice of the Passion being offered in the Supper, but only in the sense that the Victim of the Passion was consummated by partaking, which would mean that the sacrificial banquet of Christ's Passion was celebrated, although the sacrificial act of the Passion had not yet taken place.

Two replies can be given to this objection: First, there can be no sacrificial banquet upon a victim not yet offered. Nothing can become a victim until it is offered. It is actually by the offering that what is offered is made sacred to God. Therefore, without the offering there is no sacrifice, there is nothing sanctified, there is nothing which becomes sanctifying. Now the flesh of the victim is required only as sanctifying, as sanctified, as divine, as something made sacred to God. On the other hand, the Lord could have given Himself in banquet previous to the immolation in blood for this reason: that the victim once constituted under the symbols of immolation, not only was destined for immolation, but was then made apt to be received as food and drink. The very nature of the offering, therefore, made it possible for the banquet to anticipate the immolation.

My second reply is addressed to Catholics: Every Catholic must believe that what Christ gave to the disciples in the Supper, Christ offered to God in the Supper. It has always been the faith of the Church, that in the Supper a true sacrifice was enacted by our Lord. As evidence of this we can refer to the many testimonies of the Fathers in the first chapters of this work. And it was defined at the Council of Trent (session 22, C. I D. 978). Now, admittedly, the sacrifice of the Passion was partaken of in the Supper by way of banquet; therefore, the sacrifice of the Passion was offered in the Supper: the Victim of the same sacrifice was both offered to God, and given to men for their partaking.

B. In Tradition

The Fathers imply the same teaching when they say, that not only was the new covenant proclaimed, or announced, or represented in the Supper, but actually entered into and sanctioned—though of course without prejudice to the Passion. Upon this St. Ephraem leaves no room for doubt: "When therefore, He says, He had administered to His apostles .... and had so lowered Himself before them as humbly to wash their feet .... He then sanctioned another pasch which was to bring the former pasch to an end, and was to establish the pasch of the nations unto eternal life. " Later interpreting Isaias, VI, 1-8, He represents our Lord as saying: "This table is an altar, this cenacle is a temple, I am the Lord .... I am the Son of the living Father, I came down from heaven in this sixth millennium to give a new covenant to My Church. Finally, He exclaims: "O wonderful night in which the mysteries were revealed, the old covenant brought to its end, and the Church of the Gentiles enriched; blessed night, blessed time in which the Supper was consecrated" (Sermo 3, in hebdomadam sanctam, n. 3-7 ed. Lamy, t. 1, p. 416-428).

When the Fathers combine the Supper and the Passion in such a way as to make of both one unique fulfilment of the ancient pasch, they clearly indicate the same teaching. Here, also, we may quote St. Ephraem saying that the true Pasch of the true Lamb, who was made Victim for all, was offered in the Supper; the true Pasch which was to bring us out of the Egypt of perdition and bondage into the haven of salvation; finally, the true Pasch in the commemoration of which the Church would celebrate the sacrifice, whereby she herself would be sanctified: "In place of the ordinary table which men use for food, I have brought you the Altar and the Victim of propitiation .... the pasch of Egypt which was offered in figure has come to an end today; henceforth I am the Pasch. The table was His altar which He wholly consecrated. On the evening of this Pasch the cenacle was a church; the table was the sacred altar; the reclining apostles were the priests; the Head of the guests was Jesus Himself, the offering and the offerer; the disciples the partners with Him at the feast. Witnesses of the new pasch, they gazed in wonder at the sacrifice; for they had never partaken of the like .... By this present pasch, the pasch of Egypt was brought to a close. That pasch had been offered so that the first-born might not be slain; this pasch was offered because of the slaying of the first-born; the former pasch was celebrated to commemorate the deliverance of a people. This pasch led the peoples into the place from which the people had gone forth. The victim of the former pasch was a lamb. Our victim is Himself the Shepherd who feeds all. The former pasch was instituted by Moses in memory of the deliverance; this was instituted by the Lord In order that the commemoration of it might sanctify us. Henceforth you will eat a clean pure Pasch, bread kneaded and baked by the Holy Spirit. I have wine to give you in drink, wine mingled with fire and the spirit,[111] that is the Body and Blood of God, Who is made victim for all (Sermo 2 in sanctam hebdomadam, n. 6-10, ed. Lamy, t. 1, p. 380-390). "Then all afire with love, Jesus rose from the place where He was reclining, and began to fulfil the mysteries and bring the true pasch to perfection. And so rising from the Supper .... He took a towel, etc .... . On the night of this Pasch He commanded His Church, to commemorate the Lamb, the Son of our God, Who being slain for us, gave His Body and Blood (Sermo 3 in hebd. sanctam, n. I and Sermo 4, n. 7, ed. Lamy, t. 1, p. 390 and 426). We see His condition as victim in the sacrifice which Christ offered in the Supper. He is the Victim from His death ("because of the first-born slain"); He is the Lamb, soon to be slain, now offered to God; so much so that actually before the immolation, He is given to the apostles in food; from thence on He is the true, one perpetual Pasch, by whose Body and Blood we are nourished and sanctified.

For the moment we pass over the similar testimony of Chrysostom (in 2 Cor., hom. 34, n. 2. P.G. 61, 288), it will be discussed in a more opportune place. It may be that Sophronius of Jerusalem has left a trace of this teaching in His Anacreontica:

"He gave to man the Lamb Redeemer, Figuring His own death in the mystic Supper" (Anacreontica 8. P.G. 87 ter. 3774).

Put in another way: Christ gave Himself to the apostles in the sacramental representation of His death, to be eaten as the redeeming Lamb, that is as the Victim of His redemptive Passion.[112]

Euthymius Zigabenus, as I think, expresses the teaching of the Catholic Fathers. He connects the eating and the slaying of the lamb in the new Pasch by which the old pasch was abrogated. "For as painters draw lines and sketch in pictures on the same tablet, and clothe them with colour and give them form, so at one and the same table Christ outlined the shadowy and figurative pasch, and likewise instituted the new and perfect Pasch. and the slaying of the legal lamb prefigured the slaying of the Rational Lamb, the shadow must needs fade with the rising of the sun, and the figure disappear with the coming of the Reality (In Matth., XXVI, 26. P.G. 129, 664-665).

The Lamb slain in the Passion is the reality which corresponds to the figure. Christ places this reality before His apostles at the Supper. This would have been impossible if Christ had not offered the Victim of His Passion in the Supper and given the Victim in food to the apostles. This being so, the slaying was implied, and it is from the slaying that the partakers are feasted.

Of the Latin writers Tertullian (Adv. Marcionem, 40. P.L. 2, 460) considers that it was in the Supper and the Passion combined that the ancient pasch was fulfilled. "Christ, whose passion the Law prefigures, knew when it behoved Him to suffer. Because out of the many Jewish festivals He selected the paschal day. For Moses had predicted the sacrament in the Pasch: It is the Pasch of the Lord. " Note the relation between the pasch and the Passion.[113] And He immediately proceeds: "And also for this reason He showed His love: With desire have I desired to eat this pasch with you before I suffer. O thou who didst destroy the Law, and didst desire also to observe the Pasch! Did the Jewish sacrifice of rams give Him pleasure? Led like a lamb to the slaughter and as a sheep before the shearer would not open His mouth, was it He who desired to fulfil The Figure of His Saving Blood? He desired, therefore, to eat the Eucharistic Pasch.[114] Indeed, because the Pasch is the Passion, for this very reason the Pasch is the Eucharist. That is to say: the one true proper Pasch of the Lord consists indivisibly in the bloodless rite and in the slaying in blood. In this pasch the figure of the blood, that is, of the death of Christ, is signally fulfilled. Thus Tertullian.

Leo the Great in a similar strain gives the reason why the Passion was to be referred to the day of the Pasch: namely, that the Passion itself fulfils the paschal figure. He also points out the manner in which the fulfilment of the figure was accomplished—that is, by the offering which the Lord made of His Body and Blood in the Supper. Evidently, then, Leo considers the Supper and the Passion to be one indivisible sacrifice, corresponding adequately to the offering, the immolation, and the partaking of the figurative lamb: "We see how it was decreed in the divine counsels, that the sacrilegious leaders of the people and the impious priests who repeatedly sought occasion to vent their rage on Christ, did not receive the power to let loose their fury, except at the solemnity of the pasch. For it was fitting that what had long ago been foretold in figured mystery, should be openly verified in the eyes of all; that the true Lamb should replace the figured lamb, that the diversity of victims should be brought to an end in one sacrifice. For all these things regarding the immolation of the lamb, that through Moses had been divinely instituted, foretold Christ and really predicted the slaying of Christ. In order, therefore, that the shadows should yield before the substance, and the images fade in the presence of the reality, the ancient observance is abrogated in the new sacrament, victim is exchanged for Victim, blood is replaced by Blood, and the legal festivity in being changed is fulfilled."

That is to say, while the Jews were occupied not so much in the observance of the festival as in the desire to put Christ to death, "Jesus firm in His purpose, intrepid in the performance of His Father's will, sealed up the old testament, and instituted the new Pasch. Reclining with His disciples to partake of the mystic Supper, while in the hall of Caiphas there was debate as to how Christ should be to death, He was instituting the sacrament of His Body and Blood, and teaching them of the nature of the Victim which was to be offered to God" (Serm. 58, 1, 3. P.L. 54, 332-333; compare Serm 60, 2, col. 244).[115]

Like Leo, St. Fulgentius expounds to us the change of the testament and the fulfillment of the pasch. Putting to himself the question, why St. Luke speaks of two chalices, He answers: just as the Old Testament, which is indicated by the first chalice, merges into the New which is in the second, so the ancient pasch merged into the true Pasch of the Supper and the Passion combined. "It appears to me that here we have another mystery of the Christian faith—that in the two chalices we must recognize the two testaments. And particularly because Truth Himself has shown this to us, so that there should be no difficulty for inquiring minds. Because the Lord deigned to call the chalice which He gave to be drunk, the new testament. We know this from the words of the Gospel. The three evangelists, Matthew, Mark and Luke being undoubted witnesses to it .... Hence also it is that the blessed Paul commemorating the mystery of the Supper, says that the Lord called the chalice by no other name than the new testament. In other places in Scripture the word chalice may be interpreted in any other way according to the rule of faith. But in this place of the Gospel on which we are speaking now, we are not permitted to interpret it otherwise than the way shown by our Lord and Master who says this chalice is the new testament in my blood (Luke XXII. 2). And just as this chalice is called the New Testament, it is reasonable to see the Old Testament in the chalice which He had previously distributed. Hence the Lord Himself, who gave each testament to His faithful people, likewise gave them the two chalices. For this reason in the same Supper He ate the Jewish lamb which the law commanded to be offered, and also gave the Sacrament of His Body and Blood which was to be instituted for the salvation of the faithful. He ate the Jewish Pasch wherein Christ was promised, that He might come to our Pasch wherein Christ was sacrificed .... Thus He ate the ancient Pasch in which it was signified that He was to suffer before suffering for us of His own free will." (Epist. 14, 40-43. P.L. 56, 428-431).[116]

It is worthy of remark here that of the three converging sentences in which St. Fulgentius contrasts the new Pasch with the old, the first clearly indicates the Eucharistic Supper ("He gave the sacrament of His Body and Blood"); the third clearly points to the Passion ( .... "suffering of His own free will"); while the second seems to bestride, so to speak, both the Supper and the Passion ( .... "so as to come to our Pasch in which Christ is sacrificed"); as if making the integral paschal sacrifice of our Redeemer to issue both from the Supper and the Passion.

The anonymous writer of the treatise De solemnitatibus, sabbatis et neomeniis,[117] who wrote, (as far as we can conjecture) after Leo, certainly united the Supper and the Passion in the unity of one individual paschal sacrifice. For though this writer says that the true Lamb was not immolated or slain before the fifteenth day of the first month (n. 5 and 6),[118] nevertheless He says at the same time that it was offered in sacrifice by the Lord,[119] on the threshold of the Passion on the fourteenth day in the Supper, where the ancient pasch was abrogated by the new Pasch (n. 5). That He considers the immolation or the slaying on the fifteenth day and the sacrificial action on the fourteenth day as being one indivisible sacrifice, is evident from the question He puts (n. 5) : Why, contrary to the appointed order in the figurative pasch, was the true Lamb to be given in food before being slain or immolated.[120] This question obviously presupposes that what was eaten at the Eucharistic Supper, was the Victim of the Passion. For had the author meant the victim of some bloodless sacrifice, preliminary to the sacrifice in blood, why not deny the statement implied in the question? He does not say this however, but He admits the inversion of the order and He also gives two reasons for it. True the reasons He gives are not very satisfactory, but a better reason can be found. In the 15th Homily, known generally as that of St. Eligius of Noyon (but probably belonging to the IX century), it is interesting to note the legal paschal lamb as a type of things to come: the Supper and the Passion: "Readers must not be satisfied merely with the historical meaning of the sacred books, they must also consider in them what the prophetic language intends to convey by allegory: there is the series of readings on the paschal lamb for example. The Law commanded the Jews to immolate the paschal lamb, and (as a type of future things) the paschal lamb indicates the immaculate Lamb, the Son of God the Father, the supper of Whose passion we celebrate today" (P.L. 87, 849). Here certainly the antitype (i. e. what corresponds to the type) is placed in the Supper and the Passion combined.

Similarly St. Paschasius Radbertus, noting that the legal pasch was the figure of the Passion of the Lord, goes on to say that the figure was fulfilled in the Supper: "Luke says that there were two chalices given to the disciples in the same supper: the first chalice before the eating of the lamb and before the breaking of the bread; the second, when He blessed the bread and broke and gave to the disciples .... We are given to understand here that the legal lamb with its chalice came first as a figure of the Passion of Christ. Afterwards the Body and Blood was consecrated in fulfillment of the reality." (Epistola de corpore et sanguine Domini ad Frudegardum P.L. 120, 1395). If the Supper fulfils that which was the figure of the Passion, must it not be really joined to the Passion? And if the figure was to be fulfilled in the order of sacrifice, must not the Supper be really joined with the Passion as one sacrifice?

Rupert has good reason for placing the following two statements in juxtaposition:

First, the kingdom of God arrived with the Eucharistic chalice, which latter is the fulfillment of the figure.

Second, the Passion was the initiation of the kingdom of God.

This can be only if the Supper is the banquet of the Passion, just as the victim of the typical sacrifice was the food in the typical pasch: "Luke alone recorded the words of the Lord spoken in the first supper of the typical pasch, which, obeying the command of the old Law, He ate with His disciples .... It was Luke alone who was careful to record the words of the Lord, saying that with desire He desired to eat the pasch of that year with His disciples .... He added that the cause of this desire was that He would not eat that Pasch and drink of the chalice of the same typical pasch, until it was fulfilled in the kingdom of God. It was fitting therefore that He should proceed to write down the manner of its fulfillment. Hence having related what was already said in the same Supper, He says: And taking the bread He gave thanks and broke, and gave to them saying: This is my body which is given for you. Do this for a commemoration of me. In like manner the chalice also after He had supped, stating: This is the chalice, the new testament in my blood which shall be shed for you. And so in this way is fulfilled in the Kingdom of God that which was figured in the former pasch and in the former chalice. Because in that very moment the kingdom of God came, and the beginning of this Kingdom was His Passion, to which He was given over on that night, to rise again on the third day." (De gloria et honore filii hominis. Super Matth., I, 10. P.L. 168, 1545). The kingdom of God commences in the Supper, not only in the eating, but in the very offering, of the Lamb who is about to die: "On the first day of the azymes the disciples came to Jesus saying: Where wilt thou that we should prepare for thee to eat the pasch? But Jesus said: Go ye into the city to a certain man, and say to Him: the master saith: my time is near at hand, with thee I make the pasch with my disciples. And the disciples did as Jesus appointed to them, and they prepared the pasch. The fourteenth day of the first month was the first day of the azymes, and towards the evening of that day was the pasch, that is the immolation of the lamb .... Towards the evening of that day, when the moon was full, the lamb was slain with a mystic rite, it was eaten with unleavened bread and wild lettuce. On that day when the lamb was commanded to be eaten in all the houses, already kept from the tenth day to be immolated towards the evening, Judas sought to betray the Lamb of God, and the opportunity was given in this manner: Go ye, says the Lord Jesus, into the city to a certain man and say to Him: the master saith: my time is near at hand etc. For He came from Bethany into the city, that is into Jerusalem, and by coming and remaining there for some time, He afforded the opportunity for the traitor .... . For would it be seemly, would it be just and lawful to consummate the ancient pasch, to offer the [the reading may be: this great] sacrifice of His Body and Blood, which He made on that night, in any other place than Jerusalem? The Law says: Do not offer thy sacrifice in every place, but in that place which the Lord hath appointed, in one of thy tribes thou shalt offer victims, and shalt do all things whatsoever I have commanded thee. Made under the Law, He owed obedience to the Law, to offer the sacrifice not in Bethany or any other place, but in the place which the Lord had chosen, that is in Jerusalem .... Hence I have mentioned this, so as not to omit the reason why the kid or the lamb to be slain had to come to the place of immolation, that is because made under the Law, He must obey the Law" (Ibid., col. 1541-42). Note the offering, made in the Supper, of the Lamb to be immolated,[121] the Lamb to be given over to the hands of evil men by the betrayal.[122]

We have much the same meaning in the following post-pridie prayer in the Mozarabic Mass for the vigil of the Resurrection: "Having before our eyes, O holy omnipotent Father, the triumphs of this great Passion, we humbly beseech thee, that this Pasch which our Lord Jesus Christ Thy Son made [i. e. in the Supper] a living victim and completed [i. e. in the Passion] may become for us a safeguard unto salvation and life. " That is to say, by His sacerdotal offering Christ made Himself a living paschal Victim; immolated, He completed it in His death.[123]

Similarly in the venerable Chaldean Liturgy (said by some to be the Persian, but really an offshoot of the Syro-Antiochene), we read that in the Supper the Lord instituted the true Pasch which is the Pasch of the Lord immolated on the Cross: "He left us a memorial of our redemption, this mystery which we present in thy sight: for when the time arrived when He was to suffer and come to His death, on that night when He was betrayed for the life of the world, having in obedience to the Law of Moses made the pasch with His disciples, He then in place of this pasch introduced His own Pasch before His death, the memorial of which we now make, as He gave to us to do, until His return from heaven: for our pasch is Christ who was immolated for us. After He had supped therefore in the legal pasch of Moses He took bread etc., The Supper narrative concluded, the deacon addresses the faithful: "Contemplate the gentleness, the humility, the obedience of our Redeemer, enlightened by faith, with the consciousness of sin forgiven, attend! And let us turn our eyes to the only-begotten Son of the Father, behold Him led to the dread sufferings of the cross. (Max Saxonia Missa Chaldaica, p. 32-33). The meaning appears to me to be: that through the mystery of the Supper He is led to the Cross, and thus we know that the Pasch who was immolated on the Cross, appears as introduced in the Supper: that is, the sacrifice of the one Lamb, commenced in the Supper, is completed on the Cross—as He hastens on from the offering to the immolation. It may be that this teaching on the oneness of our Lord's Pasch is not well known in the schools today, yet it is undoubtedly preached in the Church at the present time. Leaving other examples for a more opportune place, I quote one which may well be called a classic, from the great work of Cardinal Manning, The Glories of the Sacred Heart: "In that hour and in that action [of the Paschal Supper], He offered up the Lamb that was slain from the beginning of the world. The atoning sacrifice predestined from the beginning of the world was then offered up. The true Lamb was there. The types and shadows passed away, the reality was come. Jesus without spot or blemish, the Lamb immaculate and holy, was brought up into the courts of the temple .... In this last Paschal Supper, when Jesus sat at the table, and took bread, blessed it, and broke it, gave it and said: This is my body, and the chalice when He had blessed it, and said This is my Blood, He began the act of oblation finished upon Calvary, which redeemed the world .... He made a free and voluntary offering of Himself. He had not yet shed His Blood, but throughout His whole life He had offered His will, and now He offered His death; for that shedding of Blood was the completion of the sacrifice. "[124] When our people hear these words, they recognize the faith which is in them and they understand it because of the knowledge of truth which is according to holiness.

§3. The Supper and the Sacrifice of Melchisedech

A. Testimony Of The Epistle To The Hebrews

The Epistle to the Hebrews (c. c. V-VII) declares at length that Christ was a priest according to the order of Melchisedech in respect of the sacrifice of His passion and death, whereby as the eternal Redeemer He opened the way to heaven for us.[125]

Though St. Paul speaks of other resemblances between Christ and Melchisedech (Hebr. VII 1-3), these are superficial and, so to speak, personal, there is no doubt whatever that the pre-eminent resemblance between the two (though for just reasons not Hebr. V 11-14), that which underlies all the others, always understood and proclaimed by tradition, and solemnly declared by the Council of Trent (sess. 22, C. I. 938), is the resemblance of the bread and wine in each case, as the external material of the sacrifice.[126] This is precisely the reason why Christ is said to be a priest according to the order of Melchisedech; that is, not merely because of Melchisedech's pre-eminent degree and dignity, but also in accordance with the same order and manner of offering sacrifice, and as if after the model of Melchisedech: according to the order of Melchisedech (Hebr., V. 6) = according to the similitude of Melchisedech.[127] Now if the following two statements are combined: 1) Christ showed Himself as priest according to the order of Melchisedech in His Passion; and 2) the resemblance between Christ and Melchisedech is primarily in the rite; is any other inference possible than that Christ offered the sacrifice of His Passion in the consecration of the bread and wine? Therefore in the Supper Christ made the sacrificial offering of His death which was to be undergone on the Cross. In a word: St. Paul refers the priesthood of Christ according to the order of Melchisedech and according to the similitude of Melchisedech to the sacrifice of the Redemption. Hence an almost insoluble exegetic difficulty arises if we do not admit the numerical oneness of the sacrifice of our Lord, offered liturgically in the Supper, and hence continuing on throughout the whole Passion until His death.

B. Patristic Testimony

The Fathers illustrate this teaching in three ways.

First, they place the Melchisedechian priesthood of Christ in the Supper.[128]

Thirdly, they look upon the Melchisedechian sacrifice of Christ as one in the Supper and in the Passion.

(a) The Melchisedechian Character Of The Supper

First, then, the Fathers place the Melchisedechian sacrifice of Christ in the Supper.[129] Outstanding among them is Cyprian who, in His epistle to Caecilius on the sacrament of the chalice of the Lord, establishes the resemblance between the priesthood of Christ and the priesthood of Melchisedech in the fact that Christ offered to sacrifice to God in bread and wine. "We find the sacrament of the sacrifice of the Lord prefigured in Melchisedech the high priest, as Sacred Scripture attests, where we read: And Melchisedech king of Salem brought forth bread and wine. He was a priest of the Most High God, and He blessed Abraham. In the Psalms the Holy Spirit declares that Melchisedech was a type of Christ, saying to the Son in the person of God the Father: Before the day-star I begot thee. Thou art a priest forever according to the order of Melchisedech. The order mentioned here has without doubt its origin and descent from that sacrifice, in the fact that Melchisedech was a priest of the Most High God, that He offered in bread and wine, that He blessed Abraham. For who is more a priest of the Most High God than the Lord Jesus Christ who offered sacrifice to God the Father, and offered the same sacrifice that Melchisedech had offered, that is bread and wine, namely His Body and Blood? In Genesis therefore, in order that the blessing of Abraham could be ritually celebrated by Melchisedech the priest, we have first the image of the sacrifice of Christ, situate in the bread and wine; the Lord, perfecting and fulfilling this, offered bread and a cup—mingled with wine, and He who is the plenitude of the reality fulfilled the reality of the prefigured image." (Epist. 63, n. 4. P.L. 4, 375-377).

We have already seen how St. Ephraem (pp. 58-59) tells us that Christ took upon Himself in the Supper the character of the Melchisedechian priesthood: "He broke the bread .... He mingled the chalice .... He the Priest of our propitiation offered the sacrifice to Himself .... He assumed the priesthood of Melchisedech the figure of Himself."

Commenting on Psalm 109, St. Jerome, as it were in the person of the Psalmist, addresses Christ giving praise to Him because He is to offer His Body and Blood for us in the rite of Melchisedech, when He gives us the sacrament, that is in bread and wine in the Supper: For in that manner in which Melchisedech King of Salem offered bread and wine, so shalt Thou too offer Thy Body and Blood, True Bread and True Wine. This is that Melchisedech who gave us the mysteries which we have. It is He who said: He that eateth my flesh and drinketh my blood. He gave us His sacrament according to the order of Melchisedech." (Tractat. de Ps. 109. Anecdota Maredsolana, vol. 3, pars. 2, p. 201).

St. Leo speaks in the same strain when He says that the priesthood according to the order of Melchisedech was discharged by Christ, when He consecrated the bread and wine in the Last Supper: "It was He whose figure Melchisedech the high priest was, not offering Jewish sacrifices to God, but immolating the sacrifice of that sacrament which our Redeemer consecrated in His Body and Blood. Sermo, 5, c. 3. P.L. 54, 154).

Arnobius Junior distinctly says, that Christ was made a priest according to the order of Melchisedech because of the mystery which He consecrated in bread and wine: "By the mystery of the bread and wine He was made priest forever according to the order of Melchisedech, who alone of all priests offered in bread and wine, when Abraham returned victorious from the battle" (In Psalm 109, P.L. 53, 496).

These early Fathers have a host of mediaeval followers. Thus Isidore [130] sees in Melchisedech a figure of Christ doing what we do now when we offer the sacrifice of the Body and Blood of the Lord, the true Pasch. Bede [131] holds that it was actually in the Supper that Christ showed Himself a priest according to the order of Melchisedech. Claudius of Turin agrees with Bede.[132] Theodulf of Orleans makes the sacrifice of our Lord in the Supper the antitype of Melchisedech.[133] Amalarius,[134] Cardinal Humbert,[135] Gerhoh of Reichersberg,[136] say the same. From the Greek writers of the Middle Ages we select Euthymius Zigabenus. He follows closely in this sense.[137]

The Liturgies also reflect the Melchisedechian character of the Supper. For instance, at one time in the church of Milan, there was the following passage in the canon proper to Holy Thursday: "We therefore beseech thee, O Lord, graciously to regard this oblation which we offer to thee in our celebration of the day of the Lord's Supper, at which our Lord Jesus Christ thy Son instituted the rite of sacrifice in the New Testament, while He transformed bread and wine, which the priest Melchisedech had offered in figure of the future mystery, into the sacrament of His Body and Blood." (Canon antiquus missae Ambrosianae in coena Domini, in Muratori, De rebus liturgicis dissertatio, c. 10. P.L. 74, 944). These words mark the similarity in the actual rite of sacrifice between Christ offering and Melchisedech offering.

To sum up: The Epistle to the Hebrews places our Lord's establishment of the Melchisedechian priesthood totally in the offering of the sacrifice of the Passion. The Church through the Fathers assigns this establishment particularly to the Supper. Is not the natural conclusion this: that the Passion was offered in the Supper? And hence that the one indivisible sacrifice of Christ results from the Passion and the Supper, the one unique fulfillment of the ancient figure?

(b) The Resemblance Between The Offering Of Melchisedech And The Victim Of The Cross

St. Ambrose is our first witness here. He does undoubtedly see the type of Christ in Melchisedech, by reason of the bread and wine.[138] And yet the holy Doctor says "Melchisedech, who according to the Latin interpretation is said to be king of justice and king of peace, blessed Abraham. For He was a priest of the Most High God. But who is the King of Justice and the King of Peace but He to whom it is said: Thou art a priest forever according to the order of Melchisedech, that is the Son of God, the Priest of the Father Who by the sacrifice of His body made propitiation to the Father for our sins? (De Abraham, l, I, C. 3, n. 16. P.L. 14, 427).

How does Christ correspond to Melchisedech? How, in other words, does our High Priest according to the order of Melchisedech accord with that Melchisedech who offered bread and wine? He accords in this, that He offered the sacrifice of His Body and Blood and thus placated the Father for us, He offered the sacrifice of the Redemption, He offered the Victim of the Passion. Such is the reply of Ambrose. But may I ask: How does the Victim of the Passion correspond to the offering of bread and wine, unless the Victim is offered in bread and wine by Christ as Priest, enacting the sacrifice of our Redemption and of His own death, in the Supper?

Sedulius Scotus is even more definite in this sense. He says that there was this in common between Christ and Melchisedech: that Melchisedech offered sacrifice in bread and wine, and Christ offered Himself in sacrifice on the altar of the Cross. Thus it appears to me that the immolation, and the crucifixion, of Christ is placed before us as offered under the species of bread and wine. "According to the order of Melchisedech. Because Melchisedech offered bread and wine for Abraham, in figure of Christ offering His own Body and Blood to God the Father on the Cross." (In Hebr., V. 6. P.L. 103, 258).

St. Bruno the Carthusian similarly places the antitype of the offering of Melchisedech in the crucified Flesh of Christ: "As Priest of the most high Father, He offered on the cross the sacrifice of the true Bread and Wine, that is the sacrifice of His Body and Blood. (Expositio in Psalm 109, 4. P.L. 152 1228). Is it not plain that Bruno interweaves the Supper and the Passion in the offering of the one sacrifice?

(c) The Oneness Of The Melchisedechian Supper And The Passion

To begin, let us recall how according to Cassiodorus and His school, Christ exercised the order of Melchisedech in the bread and wine of the Supper, while at the same time the priesthood of Christ admits of one sacrificial activity, by which He once offered Himself to be immolated (See p. 72).

Moreover the Fathers implicitly acknowledge the oneness of the Supper and the Passion in this, that at one time they speak of the order of Melchisedech wholly in the Passion, at another the very same Fathers speak of it wholly in the Supper. Chrysostom for instance, explaining Psalm 109. 4, establishes the likeness between Christ and Melchisedech primarily in the fact that Melchisedech, like Christ, brought bread and wine; then He proceeds upon this foundation to build other similarities.[139] Indeed commenting on the fifteenth chapter of Genesis, He finds the whole character of the type verified in the one mystery of the bread and wine.[140]

We must note what Chrysostom, commenting on the Epistle to the Hebrews, says about the priesthood of Christ according to the order of Melchisedech? He repeats what the author of the Epistle says: namely that Christ was priest precisely when He offered that sacrifice, by the one offering of which He completed the whole work of the Redemption.[141] Moreover, dealing with the Jews, while He argues at length that the translation from the priesthood of Aaron to Christ's priesthood according to the order of Melchisedech was foretold by the prophets, He nevertheless follows the author of the Epistle to the Hebrews, saying nothing about the likeness between Christ and Melchisedech in respect of the rite, as though influenced to silence for the same reason as the Apostle—not as silent because He does not know, but passing over in silence what He does know.[142] Now as Chrysostom sees on the one hand the Melchisedechian priesthood of Christ wholly in the Lord's consecration of the bread and wine, and on the other hand sees it wholly in the Passion, what other possible inference follows from His words but this: that in its Melchisedechian character the Supper was one with the Passion, because the sacrifice of the Passion was offered in the mystery of bread and wine by a priest according to the order of Melchisedech?

Theodoretus has the following remarks on Psalm 109, 4:

1) Christ as priest according to the order of Melchisedech offered Himself to God for all mankind.
2) The office of this His priesthood commenced on the night of the Last Supper, after which He went up to the Cross.
3) Having discharged that office, He does not again offer, except through the members of that body of which He is the Head.[143]

And in the Epistle to the Hebrews He states again:

1) Christ (by the Passion) offered His Body and Blood, as a priest according to the order of Melchisedech.
2) Afterwards He offered no other sacrifice.
3) Our sacrificial activity is simply the memorial of that one sacrifice.[144]

Compare these triple statements, and again there is no other probable inference but that one and the same indivisible sacrifice had place in the Supper and in the Passion, commenced in the Supper and completed in the Passion, and that when we do what Christ did in the Supper, we make the memorial of that one sacrifice.

Amongst the Latin Fathers we have St. Augustine. He evidently held that the Victim of the Passion was offered by a priest according to the order of Melchisedech. "For He is not a priest in that He is the Son of the Father, God of God, coeternal with the Progenitor, but because of the assumed flesh, because of the victim which, received from us, He will offer for us .... I am speaking to the faithful. If the catechumens do not understand, they must have done with sloth and secure instruction. Hence there is no need to reveal the mysteries. Scripture will tell you what that priesthood is which is according to the order of Melchisedech. " The very obscurity of His words is to us, the faithful who know, the most telling evidence that He refers to the flesh offered by the priest in the sacrament. Nevertheless that He is here concerned with the actual sacrifice of the Passion is suggested by the trend of His language (because of the victim which, received from us, He will offer for us"); moreover His hearers (though some of them were still without knowledge of the Eucharist) would be taken to know of what sacrifice the Victim was commemorated.[145]

In proving to the Jews that the Eucharist was presignified in Melchisedech, Isidore refers to the "rite" of the sacrifice which Christ carried out in such manner that He fulfilled it. "For the figure of this sacrifice was depicted beforehand in the priesthood of Melchisedech. For when He blessed Abraham He was a priest of the most high God, and because of the mystery of the holocaust to come He offered bread and wine in sacrifice to the Lord. This He first expressed in type of the Son of God, to whom, in the person of the Psalmist, the Father says: Before the day-star I begot thee: thou art a priest forever according to the order of Melchisedech: that is, according to the rite [146] Of this sacrifice, which Christ also fulfilled in carrying it to completion in His passion.[147] St. Paschasius Radbertus says that the true Pasch in which the figures of the Passion were fulfilled, was celebrated in the rite of Melchisedech: "Let the faithful soul consider the difference between the typical pasch in which the lamb was slain and eaten in the same supper, and the Pasch which is immediately afterwards celebrated in bread and wine according to the order of Melchisedech .... . The legal lamb with its chalice came first in figure of the passion of Christ. Then the Body and the Blood in the chalice came in fulfillment of the truth, so that what went before in Melchisedech should be wholly fulfilled in Christ .... Let the faithful soul understand in this action, that the most loving Jesus, taking bread and wine, passes from the figure and shadow of the reality on to the true sacrament of the Pasch, so that no jot or tittle should be taken from the Law, nay He being the corner stone holding together both laws, as the true Melchisedech offers bread and wine, which was the prefigured sacrament of His Body and Blood." (Epist. de corp. et sang. Dom. ad Frudegardum, P.L. 120, 1359-1360).

Elsewhere in similar words, He shows that the whole sacerdotal function of our Redemption was enacted in the rite according to Melchisedech: "The legal lamb of old, which freed the people from the bondage of Egypt, by its annual immolation in memory of this deliverance availed to sanctify the same people until He, to whom this victim bore witness should come, and being offered a Victim for us to the Father in the odor of sweetness, after He had offered the legal lamb should transfer the mystery of His Passion to other created things, bread and wine, made a priest forever according to the order of Melchisedech, approaching in His own person to God, to make intercession for us. And since even now, in the daily commemoration of the same blessed Passion, our Redeemer does all that which He did once in the time of His Passion, this to my mind is the first and the principal reason for the constant repetition of the memory of His most holy death by us, when we immolate every day His most sacred Body and Blood on the table of the altar" (Lib. de corp. et sang. Dom, 9, 2. P.L. 120, 1294-1295). He offered Himself to the Father the Victim of the Redemption: He did this when once He transferred the mystery of His Passion from empty figures to the Melchisedechian species of the truth, made forever priest and sacrificer of His own Body and Blood.

Rupert of Dietz applies to the sacrificial action of the Supper the words of the Apostle representing Christ opening the way to heaven by His unique sacrifice: "Christ the Lord, Saint of saints, to whom the Father said with an oath: Thou art a priest forever according to the order of Melchisedech, He the High Priest, He the Victim also, instituted the rite of the new sacrifice for us, on the night on which He was betrayed, taking bread and the chalice of wine and blessing and saying: This is my body, this is the chalice of my blood. For it was then that He exercised for the first time the office of His Priesthood, putting an end to the ancient priesthood, and after eating the typical lamb, He who is the True Lamb offered Himself to God the Father with His own hands: and this is what the Apostle says: that not by the blood of goats and oxen, but by His own blood, He entered once into the holies having found eternal redemption. For it was then that He, the Eternal Priest, offered that very Body which was put to death by the ungodly, and that same Blood which was shed on the cross. (De divinis officiis I, 5, C. 15. P.L. 170, 138-139). With His own hands He offered to God in the Supper the sacrifice of the Redemption, which the Apostle says was offered once.[148]

Already we have seen St. Thomas grouping together, in the sacrifice of Christ, the immolation in blood made by the Jews, the offering of the eternal Victim, and the manner of offering which we can follow in our own sacrificial offering; so here too when dealing with this question, He groups together the same three, distinguishing in the teaching of the Apostle: the affirmation of the priesthood, the affirmation of the eternal priesthood, and the affirmation of the priesthood according to the order of Melchisedech: "The Apostle says Priest: because He offered Himself to God the Father (Eph., V. 2, He loved us, and hath delivered himself up for us an oblation and a sacrifice to God). And lest it be thought that this priesthood of Christ was the same as that of the old Law, He distinguishes it under two aspects. First, in respect of its dignity, because it is forever. Its Victim has the virtue of leading us to life everlasting: it lasts forever. Secondly, in respect of its rite, because animals were offered in the old Law, here Bread and Wine is offered; and for this reason He says: according to the order of Melchisedech" (In Hebr. V. lect. 1). Now in the first point of the distinction we know that the sacrifice of the Passion is meant, not only from what is immediately subjoined: that the Victim of the Passion lasts forever, but also and especially from the Epistle to the Ephesians quoted by St. Thomas, where St. Paul refers to the Passion, and hence St. Thomas also refers to it. But nevertheless this celebration is said to be enacted in bread and wine in the rite of Melchisedech.

Finally we have the following Prosa de Eucharistia [149] (from the Breviary of Bourges, Venice printed 1481. A. H. 15, 52-53), wherein the question is asked what was the antitype of the sacrifice offered by Melchisedech, and the answer is that it was that Bread which imparts life to the partakers, which was affixed to the Cross, and was slain by the Cross, as was said by the Prophet (Vulgate) : And I was a meek lamb, that is carried to be a victim: and I knew not that they had devised counsels against me, saying: let us put wood in His bread, that is the wood of the Cross:

"Choir of the New Jerusalem rejoice,
And wonder what this victim is,
Which Melchisedech the priest foresaw
Offering in praise, when on the way
He mystically met Abraham:
He figured Christ who in our belief
Is Living Bread and fixed on the cross
Who rising does not die again.
Christ as Bread is set before us,
Which taken gives life to the soul;
And in the bread the wood is put,
When the wood of the cross deals death to Him.

The sayings of the Fathers, early theologians and Liturgists are instructive, but no less instructive is their silence. Not even one (to my knowledge) definitely declared for that dual sacrificial action of our Lord, which many later theologians (mainly post-mediaeval) are wont not exactly to propound directly as a thesis but to assume: [150] as if it were an inference necessarily following on the numerical distinction, which on the admission of all must exist between the sacrificial activities repeated by the church and the sacrificial action whereby Christ redeemed us. But this inference does not follow (as we shall see more clearly later), for the numerical distinction between the sacrificial offerings of the Mass and the sacrifice of the Redemption does not imply a duality in the sacrifice of the Supper and the Passion.

In our own day Dr Alexander MacDonald, a Canadian theologian, formerly of St. Andrew's, Antigonish, later Bishop of Victoria, now of Hebron, wrote well:

"The idea that under the New Dispensation there are two sacrifices, or that Christ was offered twice: (i. e. by Himself), or that the Eucharistic sacrifice is other than that which was offered up on Calvary, is foreign to the mind of the Church in every century of her existence from the days of the Apostles. In vain will you seek for such an idea in the writings of the New Testament. St. Paul indeed is the only one of the New Testament writers who deals expressly with the subject, and certainly St. Paul speaks only of the one sacrifice of Christ. In the Epistle to the Hebrews He insists again and again on the oneness of Christ's sacrifice; He rings the changes upon it. After introducing our Lord as priest forever according to the order of Melchisedech He passes right on to speak of His "one oblation, " which is that of Calvary; this is only what we should expect; for the Eucharistic sacrifice, though offered after the order of Melchisedech, was consummated on Calvary, and would not at all exist but for the death of the Victim on the Cross .... On the supposition that the Eucharistic sacrifice is other than that of Calvary, a distinct oblation containing within itself all the elements of a real sacrifice, would be, to say the least misleading." (The Sacrifice of the New Law, in the Ecclesiastical Review Dec. 1, 1905, vol 33. p. 629). Here in a nutshell we have the whole teaching of antiquity.

(d) Epilogue On Hebrews IX. 14

I think that this discussion on the Melchisedechian priesthood of Christ furnishes a key to the explanation of several passages in the Epistle to the Hebrews. Of these by far the most important occurs in Hebr., XIII. 10: We have an altar whereof they have no power to eat who serve the tabernacle, which will come up for consideration later. For the present we shall confine ourselves to another passage (Hebr. IX 14), the interpretation of which has been a source of trouble to exegetes: The blood of Christ, who by the Holy [the better codices have Eternal] Spirit offered himself unspotted to God, shall cleanse etc. It is very true that if Christ offered Himself to death in the Eucharistic rite, He did offer Himself to God by the eternal Spirit, that is, by some spiritual power of the divinity, the same almighty power which the Church at a later period was to invoke in her epicleses, call it the power of God, or of the Word or of the Holy Ghost, or of the Word and the Holy Ghost. The other sacrifices were not offered by the divine power, but by an action of some kind within the ambit of human power, for instance, the pouring out of blood, the kindling of fire, or some such action.

Hence Chrysostom (in h. 1.) "The phrase of Scripture through the Holy Spirit, makes it clear that He did not offer Himself through fire, or through any other agency than the Holy Spirit" (P.G. 63, I 20). Hence the words of the Church in the Roman Missal: "According to the will of the Father by the co-operation of the Holy Spirit, thou didst by thy death give life to the world." Just as Christ in the Supper offered Himself by the divine Spirit, so we also offer Him when we celebrate Mass. Possibly this is the allusion of St. Paul, when He speaks in liturgical figures of His apostolate among the Gentiles. To my mind He is here directing the attention of the reader, not so much to the Mosaic rites, as to the Eucharistic mystery of our faith and Redemption: [151] (the grace) which is given to me by God, that I should be a minister of Christ Jesus among the Gentiles: sanctifying the gospel of God, that the oblation of the Gentiles may be acceptable and sanctified in the Holy Spirit. (Rom. XV. 15-16). These words of St. Paul are certainly applied to our sacrifice in the offertory of the Greek Liturgy of St. James: "Deign O Lord, to make us .... ministers of thy unspotted mysteries .... and in thy bounty .... accept from us sinners the proposed gifts, and grant that our oblation may be made acceptable and sanctified in the Holy Spirit (B. 48; compare Salaville D. T. C., art. Epiclese col 222-223). But the Roman Church in the past declared far more definitely and distinctly, that our offering was made by the Holy Spirit: "Graciously regard the gift of thy people, O Lord, in which there is no alien fire on thy altars, nor is the blood of irrational animals shed, but by the operating power of the Holy Spirit, our sacrifice is now the Body and the Blood of the Priest Himself" (Oratio missae tertiae in Natali Domini in the Liber sacramentorum romanae ecclesiae, dicto Leonino P.L. 55, 147).[152]

We think then that Christ offered Himself by the Eternal or by the Holy Spirit, precisely in that by the consecration of the bread into His Body and the wine into His Blood, He acted as Priest of that unique sacrifice, whereby He found eternal redemption for us—that is the sacrifice of His Passion and death.[153]

§4. The Supper and the Promise of the Eucharist

Introducing His discourse on the Flesh to be given together with the Blood (John VI. 53-59) Christ said to the multitudes: The bread that I will give, is my flesh for the life of the world (verse 51 Vulgate, and verse 52 Douay).[154] Therefore before Christ was to give His Flesh with the bread as food, He was to give it over to death in sacrifice, for the life of the world; and He was to give it as bread.[155] This declaration of death in bread would scarcely be intelligible at all until the time arrived when Christ in the Last Supper said to His apostles: This is my body (which is given for you), this is my blood which is shed for many unto the remission of sins. For it was at the time of the Supper that He revealed the mystery to the eyes of faith, giving His own Flesh over to death under the appearance of bread. It was at the time of the Supper, as Christ had foretold, that the Eucharistic bread was the Body of the Victim devoted to death, the Body to be immolated.

Hence too "all the best of the ancient authors very rightly say that these words are to be understood of the Eucharist" as Maldonatus (in h.l.) holds; and Cajetan likewise writes: "He clearly says that this bread will be His Passion and death. " [156] For as Knabenbauer (in h. l.) says: "Both the sacrifice of the Cross and the Eucharist are indicated here. " Indeed both are alluded to as one. Christ gave His Flesh—bread, for the salvation of the world: He offered the sacrifice of His death in bread, we make the commemoration of this sacrifice, when subordinate to Him we offer the death of Christ. Thus therefore both the Eucharist and the Passion are intertwined in the realisation of the one fulfillment of the promise of Christ. The bread which I will give [in sacrifice] is my flesh for the life of the world.[157]

Two considerations help to clarify this point still further.

In the first place, the series and the interconnection of the statements of the Lord through the whole discourse after the multiplication of the loaves. For having said that He is the bread of life, which must be eaten (V. 27-50), He goes on to tell how this must be. In explanation He lays down two conditions: (1) that the bread is the bread of Sacrifice (V. 51 or 5 2. Vulgate); (2) it is to be eaten after the manner of a Sacrificial Banquet (V. 54-58).

In respect of the first, He explains the Sacrificial Offering of the bread as the offering of His Flesh to redeem the world from death to life. In respect of the second, He points out distinctly the character of the Sacrificial Banquet in bread (now coupled with the drink) in the following way: the bread is the Flesh which must be eaten, the wine the Blood which must be drunk; by this separate mention of eating the Body and drinking the Blood not only is the death condition indicated, but the feeding upon the victim of the immolation also.

But the condition of sacrificial banquet is consequent on the sacrificial offering which is necessarily presupposed. For the bread is the sacrificial food (to be given to man), because it is the sacrificial gift (made to God). And so when Christ was explaining the life-giving virtue of the Eucharistic mystery, it was necessary for Him to speak first of the sacrificial offering. (For as will be shown in the third book, the Eucharist is a sacrament only in as much as it is the Victim of a sacrifice to be partaken of by us). Once admit then that the bread in V. 51 (Vulgate V. 52) is said to be offered to God by way of sacrifice, and it will be practically impossible to avoid this conclusion: the sacrificial offering of the bread is the offering of Christ to death for the life of the world.

Secondly, consider the interpretation forced on those theologians who, regardless of the sequence of the sentences, refuse to see in V. 51 (52) any sacrificial offering of the bread. To them Christ here signified: (1) nothing more than that the bread is His very own Flesh; (2) and none other than the Flesh which He was to offer on the Cross. Christ therefore enunciating two identities, the one that of the bread with the Flesh, the other the identity of this Flesh with the real Flesh to be uplifted on the Cross, merely desired by this second identity to emphasize the reality of the Flesh contained in the bread. On such a supposition however this second identity would be purely material, formal in no wise, for an expression such as " .... my Flesh is taken from the maternal womb, " would serve Christ's purpose just as well. Hence this interpretation must be rejected as unsatisfactory.

You may urge perhaps that here Christ not only declares the identity, but affirms also a symbolical relation in the bread to the sacrifice of the Cross, just as if He were to say: the bread which I will give to you, will be my Flesh which is given to God on the Cross in such a way that the sacrifice of my Passion will also be represented by a previous sacrifice under the appearance of bread (and wine). But obviously this explanation strains the meaning of the text. There is no word about a representative nexus as between sacrifice and sacrifice. Hence if this explanation contains any element of truth, it can only be considered as a consequence of the literal meaning of the text, which we have admitted.

We may remark in addition that the explanation of our opponents cannot well be defended in either of these interpretations, unless the expression I will give only once pronounced, has a double reference to two things worlds apart—according as it is applied to the bread or to the Flesh. To the Flesh as to be given to God for us (for the life of the world). To the bread as to be given to us, not to God for us. Hence in respect of the bread, giving is affirmed and not offering, and in respect of the Flesh offering is affirmed, not giving. But there is a certain violence and distortion in this two-fold explanation of one single phrase; while the sentence is clearer and simpler, if the direction of giving once uttered, is specified both in the Flesh and in the bread by the words for the life of the world (Cf. Titelmann in h.l.).

Those who with Maldonatus admit the repetition of I will give in the text evade this last difficulty by saying that it is permissible to admit one kind of giving in the bread, and another kind in the Flesh—bread given to man in food, Flesh given to God as Victim. When "He says give twice, He indicates that He is speaking of diverse modes of giving" (Maldonatus in h.l.). However, not only must we reject this reading of the text; but the only reading other than the one I have followed which is at all probable is: The bread which I will give for the life of the world is my flesh. And this reading bears out our interpretation in so many words.

Another attempt to evade this difficulty consists in saying that the expression for the life of the world is absolute, as in the Pauline form of the Supper the words for you (Cor IX. 24) are absolute. There would be no difficulty here, if the phrase l will give is understood as the giving of bread to us, not to God; and if we understood the phrase for the life of the world of the sacrificial offering of the flesh made to God. For the one locution I will give would not have two opposite directions. But this contention falls to the ground owing to the weakness of the parity between 1 Cor., XI. 24 and John VI. 51 (or 52) on which it rests. Because in St. Paul we have: This is my body which .... for you; but St. John has not .... is my flesh which for the life of the world; which is absent; thus the sentences do not run parallel. But even if the suggested interpretation were probable (and I have nowhere seen it approved), it certainly remains that the sacrificial offering of the Flesh of Christ unto death—is my flesh (which) for the life of the world—is assigned as formally causing and explaining the giving of the bread as food (the bread which I will give). Hence again follows what we have said above, that the eating of the Eucharistic food is set before us, as the partaking of the sacrifice in blood.[158] But if the sacrifice in blood is partaken of in the Eucharist it is also offered in the Eucharist. For every Catholic knows that what the faithful receive in the sacrament is precisely what was offered to God in the sacrament. Hence looked at from every aspect the words of St. John convince us that Christ offered His Passion in the Supper.

May I appeal to the Eastern Liturgies quoted earlier in this chapter? We read that on the night on which He gave Himself for the life of the world, He took bread and consecrated it. In the Greek Liturgy of St. James, for instance, Christ "on the night on which He was betrayed, nay on which He gave Himself for the life and the salvation of the world, .... taking bread .... gave etc. "Similarly in the present Syro-Antiochene Liturgy: "On that night on which He gave Himself for the life and salvation of the world, taking bread etc. "Finally, in the present Liturgy of St. John Chrysostom: "On the night on which He was betrayed, nay gave Himself over for the life of the world taking bread etc. "[159] Expressions of this kind must describe Christ's manner of giving Himself for the life of the world- that is, giving to God in the Supper His own Flesh unto death, giving Himself Victim under the appearance of bread and wine.

Consider now the prayer over the oblata in the Graeco-Alexandrine Liturgy of St. Mark: "O Lord Jesus Christ, High Priest, bread which came down from heaven and raised our life from corruption,[bread] Who gave Himself a spotless lamb for the life of the world, we beg and we invoke thee, O God, lover of men, to look graciously upon this bread and these cups which the most holy table receives by the angelic liturgy and the archangelic choir and the priestly sacrifice, ". Is it possible to find a plainer interpretation of the Gospel than these words imply? That Christ gave Himself at once as bread and as lamb for the life of the world, and that in this His priesthood manifested itself? And truly the flesh of the lamb was given as bread for the life of the world, He gave Himself over to death in bread.

Hence the wisdom of the Armenian Church offering her prayers to God the Father through the Son: "victim and anointed (i. e. the Christ or Priest), Lamb and heavenly bread, at once archpriest and sacrifice." (B. 436; compare Max Saxon., Missa Armenica, p. 33). From the parallel or the antithesis of the two triads (victim = sacrifice = Lamb; anointed = archpriest = bread), we have a proof that the sacerdotal office of our Redeemer is assigned especially to the consecration of the bread, just as the victimal condition is found in the slaying to which the lamb was submitted.

Hence too the same Armenian Church (B. 419; cf. Le Brun, Explication de la Messe, t. 3, p. 109, and Max Saxoniae, Missa Armenica, p. 12-13), following the Greek Liturgy of St. James (B. 309) proclaims that the Father transmits to us the bread of heaven to be our Saviour and Redeemer: "O God our God, Who didst transmit the Heavenly Bread, Our Lord Jesus Christ, the nutriment of the whole world, as Saviour and Redeemer and Benefactor, blessing and sanctifying us, do thou O Lord, bless now also this proposed oblation; take it unto thy celestial altar". These words tell us that Christ was our Redeemer and Saviour under the very species of bread, that is to say in the Eucharistic rite.

John Gropper, learned theologian of the Church of Cologne, later Cardinal, advanced this exegesis of ours in the Council of Trent, against the Reformers. Before the assembly of theologians gathered together in 1551, between the XIV and XV session, He presented the following two combined propositions: First: "And so Christ offered Himself to the Father for us on the Cross, from Him all received salvation. But He had previously offered Himself in the Supper under those species (and He commanded us to do this); and this offering of the Supper was the same with that of the Cross: for the sacrifice of Christ embraces that whole action. Secondly "Then He fulfilled what He had promised (John VI) : The bread which I will give, is my flesh, f or the life of the world. Now to give His Body for the life of the world is nothing else than to be immolated, seeing therefore that He gave His Body in the Supper, He gave the flesh offered by Him for the life of the world as the previous words of St. John denote. And thus are interpreted, and are to be interpreted, the words: For them do I sanctify myself, that they also may be sanctified" (Theiner Acta authentica Conc. Trident., 1, 818).

Epilogue: Some Theological Principles Of This Discussion

To sum up finally, two theological arguments may be added to the proofs we have so far advanced in these pages.

First. It is of faith that Christ offered a true sacrifice in the Supper. But unless He offered Himself to the immolation of the Passion, He did not offer a true sacrifice. For sacrifice is the offering of a victim immolated or to be immolated. Therefore there is no true sacrifice without true immolation. But there is no true immolation in the Supper; the immolation there is merely by way of symbol. What is represented in symbol is the immolation of Christ not yet made. Hence Christ is not offered in the Supper as already immolated, but He is offered as to be immolated. Therefore in the Supper He is offered to the immolation of the Cross.

Second. Had Christ in the Supper offered a sacrifice numerically other than the sacrifice of the Passion, He would already have made propitiation for the whole human race before the Passion. For on the one hand, it is impossible to conceive the sacrifice of Christ as void (that is, not accepted by God) or ineffective (that is, without its own proper fruit); [160] on the other hand, since it is ratified and efficacious, it cannot be less fruitful than the actual sacrifice of the Passion: for in the sacrifice personally offered by Christ Himself, there exists no reason for curtailing the fruit, such as we shall find in the Mass later. The sacrifice is therefore abundant, precisely because it is not subordinated to the sacrifice of the Cross, as our Mass is, but it is simply coordinated and connumerated with it. But we shall have more to say of this, when we come to the definition and evaluation of the sacrifice of the Mass.

§5. Some Circumstances of the Supper

A. The Betrayal By Judas

On the same night on which He was betrayed (1 Cor., XI. 2 3) Christ had the Supper; that is to say, at the very beginning of His Passion in its source, which was the betrayal of Judas.

That Christ's Passion had its source in the betrayal of Judas is evident from the very action of the drama. It was the action of the traitor and nothing else that gave Him over to His enemies. Nothing in the Passion is so insistently stressed by the Church in the Holy Week liturgy as this. Christ's own words to Pilate point to the same thing: Thou shouldst not have any power against me, unless it were given to thee from above. Therefore He that hath delivered me to thee hath the greater sin. (John XIX. 11) [161] as though Judas by His betrayal caused and began that dread time in which in the designs of the Father, Christ was to be given over to men to do what they willed with Him. Finally, the order and sequence of the Synoptic narratives, where in each case we have the treachery of Judas set down as the head and source of the Passion, make it quite plain. Altogether apart from this, in the Synoptics the treachery of Judas is so closely knit with the Supper as to be either its prologue (Matth. XXVI. 21-25, Mark. XIV, 18-21) or its epilogue (Luke XXII 21-23). And in St. John we read: And when the supper was done, the devil having now put into the heart of Judas Iscariot, the son of Simon, to betray Him. (John XIII. 2. compare XIII. 18, 26, 27, 30).

Evidently then the Supper is involved in the Passion, just as we have seen already the Passion was involved in the Supper. It is no surprise then to find the Supper and the Passion forming one body and substance of sacrifice, as it is one in narrative and general action.

St. Thomas (3 S. 83, 5, 3m) taught expressly that the Supper, in consequence of the betrayal and selling of Christ, must be looked upon as part of the Passion: "The Passion of Christ was undergone in stages, so to speak. For in the first place, there was the betrayal of Christ .... Secondly, there was the selling of Christ .... Thirdly, there was the presignification of the Passion of Christ made in the Supper" etc. Rupert, one of the earlier theologians of the Middle Ages, explained often and at length the teaching on this matter. In His Commentary on St. Matthew, the Supper is included in the Passion in such way that the Supper itself also includes the whole propitiation of the Passion: "Not before this time did He institute this sacrament of His Body and Blood; it was only when He was in the agony of His Passion, on the same night on which He was betrayed, when even now the wood was being prepared, on which according to the rite of the spiritual mystic and sacred law, the slain limbs of this kid would be laid, the fire of great love or of the Holy Spirit by whom He desired to be offered being kindled on the altar: It was then that He offered His own flesh for sin, that is to say all the bounty of His Passion needful for us, under these appearances of bread and wine, by saying: This bread (sic) is my body, this chalice is the new testament in my blood which shall be shed for you. Justly and fittingly: for when should this, the sacrament in which His death is announced, be justly and fittingly instituted or given, but in the very threshold of His Passion? But it will be said: the Blood was not yet shed, it was shed on the following day. I reply: That Lamb of God had already been sold, the kid of the true sacrifice had already been betrayed, and hence one rightly considers the apostles clean. His Passion which even then was on its course, His very blood whose shedding was being got ready on that night, cleansed them. (De gloria et honore Filii hominis. Super Matthaeum, I, 10. P.L. 168, col. 1547-1548).

Previously and more tersely in His third book: (De Spiritu Sancto, c. 18. P.L. 167, 1659) :

"It should be known that before the Passion He had said many things about this sacrament, and yet He did not give it until His Passion did come. For He was now already sold, as the Apostle says: On the same night on which He was betrayed. Why?, Because this life-giving mystery had no other foundation than the very Passion of the Lord.

Meantime in the twelfth book De victoria Verbi Dei (c. 12, P.L. 169, 1472) He wrote:

"Of the sacrament of the Body and Blood of the Lord it is certain, and does not need our affirmation .... that it had its beginning in the Passion or Death. For this sacrament was instituted as nearly as possible to His death, that is when He was already sold to death, and on the night on which He was betrayed. For us who live and come after Him was reserved and given that sacrament, in which under the appearances of bread and wine lies hidden the benefit of His death and resurrection.[162]

The famous argument of Cardinal de Berulle against the Protestants is well worthy of diligent study:

"How can you say that the presence of an ordinary lamb, or of bread and a cake of pure flour, set on God's table which is His altar, is a true sacrifice; yet that the presence of the living bread come down from heaven, the only Son and unique Lamb of God who taketh away the sin of the world, a presence effected by the High Priest according to the order of Melchisedech, at the moment when He begins to dedicate and offer Himself up to the cross, is not a true sacrifice? .... If we observe the movements of Him who weighs each action, performing each in due time and measure, we shall see that this mysterious action was reserved by Him to the last hour of His life, when the real Passion in Blood was already on its course (if we look for it in its beginning, namely in the heart of Judas and the plotting of the Jews), in order that this religious and sacred action should find itself brought within the bounds of His Passion, and should be initiative and dedicative of the Mystery of the Cross, and that the mysterious offering which He makes of Himself to God His Father in the Eucharist, should be followed on and carried out visibly and in Blood in His Humanity, without the interruption of any other action or mystery .... Thus it is that here He takes the first step on the way to death, whether interiorly in the intention of His heart, or liturgically in the ceremony which He institutes, or exteriorly in leaving the Cenacle to go to the garden, where His Blood was to trickle from every part of His Body, and where the enemy waited His coming to capture Him and lead Him to Calvary. For He rises from this last holy table whereon He has offered the Eucharist, to meet the agonies of death which lay hold upon Him in the garden, and He arises from the table too with these beautiful words on His lips: that the world may know that I love the Father, and as the Father hath given me commandment so do I (John XIV. 21). And assuredly seeing and considering that the Son of God did not delay the offering of Himself to death till the actual moment of torment, that His love forestalled and outmatched the malice and rage of the Jews,[163] and seeing that in this Last Supper He had no other topic of discourse but His death and Passion, and that He saw it there present in the heart and plot of Judas who was with Him at the same table, and that He was even then making a perpetual memorial of His suffering, and that in this new and Christian Pasch He was delivering up the same Lamb that was to die for our Redemption on the Cross: this being so, is it then so unbecoming the dignity of Christ when instituting the marvels of the Eucharist, or the mystery of the Cross so intimately bound up with it, or the connection between the two mysteries (as if it were another Saviour and not the same whom we see celebrating the mystery of the Eucharist in the Supper room on Sion and enduring death and the Passion on Mount Calvary), that you would have to torture your minds to believe, that it has pleased our Lord in the act of His Testament to remember His Death, and to present to God the offering and the voluntary acceptance thereof, while He is instituting the sacrament and perpetual memorial of it? If you are willing to be led by the light of His words, they clearly tell you: This is my body which is given for you, this is my blood which is shed for you (Luke XXII. 19), plainly words of oblation and sacrifice. For to be given for us and to be offered for us, are one and the same thing" (Discours II, du sacrifice de la messe celebre en l'Eglise chretienne, chap. 12. Oeuvres completes ed. Migne, Paris 1856, p. 700-702).

Recall Leo the Great cited above (IV) : "While in the hall of Caiphas there was discussion how Christ could be slain, Christ Himself was instituting the sacrament of His Body and Blood, and showing of what nature the Victim was which was to be offered to God."

In the Liturgies the Holy Thursday masses should be carefully studied, for they are filled with the name and the blame of Judas. His treachery appears to be closely knit with the Supper-Christ bearing with the companionship of the traitor for the salvation of the world. Thus the preface of the evening mass in the Gelasian Sacramentary: .... "Through Christ our Lord. On that night the guilty conscience of the traitor could not endure His warning at the sacred banquet, instead, fleeing from the company of the apostles, He took the price of blood from the Jews, in order to destroy the life which He had sold.[164] Today then the traitor supped His own death and before leaving took the bread into His blood-stained hands. From the hands of the Saviour, so that feasted with the food a greater punishment might overtake Him, whom not even this supreme excess of love could turn away from crime. And thus our Lord Jesus Christ Thy Son suffers the eating of the Last Supper with His enemy by whom He well knew that He was to be immediately betrayed, so that He might leave to the world an example of innocence, and fulfill His Passion for the redemption of mankind. The meek God therefore feasts the barbarous Judas and endures His ruthless fellow-guest at the table, until having plotted for the Blood of the Master, He would destroy himself with His own rope. "O Lord patient through all! O Lamb gentle in the banquet of Thyself. That food of His was still on Judas tongue, while he was inviting the Jews to tear his limbs asunder. But thy Son our Lord as a loving victim patiently permitted Himself to be immolated to thee for us, and obtained pardon for the world's sin. Through Him we humbly pray thee, O Lord, saying in lowly confession" etc., (Sacram. Gelas., I, I, C. 40 P.L. 74, 1102. Ed Wilson, p. 72. Cf. the same Preface with a few slight alterations or additions in Sancti Gregorii Magni liber sacramentorum P.L. 78, 82). Even now at the Supper Christ could offer His death, the death which was being prepared for Him by His traitorous table-companion. "On that night on which He was handed over, nay on that night on which He gave Himself over. " .... (Cf. p. 52 seq., p. 110 seq.).

B. The Sacerdotal Prayer Of Christ

Immediately after the Supper and before submitting to the torments of the Passion, Christ addresses the Father in a prayer which is truly liturgical,[165] in which He explains the power and the fruit of His sacrifice, much in the same manner as the Church at a later period was to develop in the course of the different parts of the Mass, the manifold phases and varied aspects of her own brief sacrificial action.[166] In His liturgy therefore our High Priest links the Supper and the Passion together as two elements of the one sacrificial activity: the whole discourse arises out of and rests on the Supper and is wholly directed to the Passion.[167]

In the course of the prayer Christ plainly says: For them do I sanctify myself (John, XVII. 19). The early writers [168] and with them all modern interpreters declare,[169] that Christ was referring to the sacrifice of the Passion in these words; nevertheless the present tense is rightly. used by our Lord at the Supper: for the sacrifice is present, and the work of our redemption runs on continuously from the Supper to the Cross.

C. The Going Forth From The Cenacle To The Garden

When Jesus had said these things, He went forth over the brook Cedron, where there was a garden into which He entered (John XVIII. 1), and He prayed saying: My Father, if it be possible, let this chalice pass from me. Nevertheless not as I will, but as thou wilt (Matth. XXVI. 39). Here clearly it was impossible in some way for Christ to refuse, and still in some way the drinking of the chalice of the Passion was against His will. Before the Supper His freedom was complete, and He had a most ardent desire of giving Himself for us. Now there is a necessity that He must submit to and it was against the grain. He must desire the Passion and yet He willed that He were not bound. The reason is, that in the meantime He had at the Supper handed Himself over to death. Freedom and voluntariety must have been absolutely clear when the offering was made. Now that the offering was made, the obligation or necessity of giving what He had offered lay upon Christ willy nilly.[170] For what has been offered to the Lord is owed to the Lord, and it is not lawful to withdraw from God a thing which is made sacred to God. Therefore Christ was now obliged to drink the chalice of death, to which He had vowed Himself in the chalice of the Blood; He who had vowed Himself to immolation could not be de-vowed from immolation. Hence we see in what sense Christ was free, and in what sense He was not free from the obligation of dying for us. He was free before the Supper; after the Supper He was no longer free.[171]

This did not escape the attention of the Fathers. They prove from it that the Passion of Christ was voluntary and spontaneous, because at the Supper, though no pressure had been brought to bear upon Him, He does of His own free will sacrifice Himself, and so to speak deputes Himself to the Passion. They also and especially show that, from the very fact that the Supper had place before the Passion, from the time of the Supper Christ was no longer free to refuse the Passion.[172]

Thus in a passage quoted above, having shown that the Lord was free from any necessity or obligation before the Supper, from thence on Aphraates represents Him as deprived of the power or at least of the right of defending Himself before His enemies, as one who by reason of the Supper was reputed amongst the dead. After the narrative of the institution of the Eucharist, He goes on: Now the Lord had not yet been apprehended. Having said these words, He rose from the place where He made the Pasch, and where He had given His Body in food and His Blood in drink, and went to the place where He was apprehended. Now He who took His own Body in food and His own Blood in drink is reputed with the dead. But the Lord gave His own Body with His own hands, and before being crucified He gave His own Blood to be drunk .... When they accused Him He did not speak, He answered nothing to His judges. Though He could of course physically speak and reply, it was impossible for Him Who was reputed with the dead to speak. (Demonstratio XII. de Paschate, n. 6. P.S. pars I, tom I, col 517).

In the Evangelii concordantis expositio (ed. Moesinger, 1776, p. 229230), St. Ephraem writes: "Father, let this chalice pass from me. He who had described His own death through His prophets, and had prefigured the mystery of His death in His just, when His own time to suffer death arrived, He certainly did not reject death, He did not refuse to drink the chalice of His death .... . Rather, towards the evening on the night on which He gave Himself over, He gave His Body to His apostles, and dispensed His Blood to His disciples, and commanded them to do this in memory of His Passion." St. Ephraem shows here that Christ did not absolutely oppose the Passion, because the Lord Himself had not only preordained His Passion, but had also delivered Himself over to it in the institution of the sacrament, and hence He could not desire to withdraw Himself from it.

Saint Leo the Great declares this in distinct terms:

"He says: Father, if it be possible, let this chalice pass from me (Matth XXVI. 30). It must not be thought that the Lord Jesus wished to avoid the Passion and death, He had already given the sacraments of it to the disciples. (Sermo 58, c. 4. P.L. 54, 335 [173]). Similarly St. Paschasius Radbertus (Expositio in Matth., I, 12. P.L. 120, 908) on the words: If it be possible, let this chalice pass: "Surely He was not unwilling to suffer, who shortly before had consecrated the blood of His body to be shed unto the remission of sins"?

Appendix A. Christ And The Obligation To Submit To Death.

The question here is: in what sense was Christ free from the obligation of undergoing death, and in what sense was He not free [174]

A. The Opinion Denying The Obligation

(a) The Denial of the Fathers.

Most of the Fathers say that Christ was free from the obligation of submitting to death. We have first of all St. Hilary. He argues for this freedom from the excellence of the sacrifice of Christ as contrasted with the ancient sacrifices: "I will freely sacrifice to thee. The sacrifices of the Law which were the holocausts and offerings of goats and bulls, did not have in themselves any profession of freedom, because a curse was inflicted on those who abstained from the sacrifices, they violated the Law and fell under the curse of the Law (Deuteron., 27. 21). Therefore what was done was done under compulsion. For the infliction of the curse prevented the neglect of the sacrifices. Our Lord Jesus Christ freed us from this curse, according to the Apostle: Christ hath redeemed us from the curse of the law, being made a curse for us, for it is written: cursed be every one that hangeth upon a tree (Gal. 111. 13, compare Deuteron., XXI. 23). Therefore He offered Himself to the death of the accursed, in order to lift the curse of the Law, by the voluntary offering of Himself as victim to God the Father; so that the curse inflicted for the sin of omitting the necessary victim might be lifted by a voluntary victim (In Psalm. 53, n. 13. P.L. 9, 345).

St. Gregory Nazianzen explicitly asks this question (Or. 45 in S. Pascha, n. 22. P.G. 36, 653) as He says "overlooked by many, but as I think, worthy of diligent. study": "How is it, that the Father was well pleased with the death of the Only Begotten, and at the same time refused to accept the offering of Isaac by His father, providing the ram in place of the rational victim? It is clear that the Father did accept the sacrifice, but it was a sacrifice that He did not demand."

Cyril is wholly intent in showing that in the Passion and death of the Son, the Father merely consented to the Son's will to suffer, and permitted the Jews who willed, to vent their rage on Christ. Thus on St. John: "Christ says that the power was given to Pilate from above, not in the sense that God the Father imposed on His own Son the sufferings of the Cross, but from the fact that the Only-Begotten actually did give Himself to suffer for us. The Father then permitted the mystery to be fulfilled in Him. Here then the words given from above mean and state that there is the acquiescence and consent of the Father, and the will of the Son Himself. (In Joann. 19. 11 P.G. 74, 641). Evidently Cyril is speaking of Christ as Man, seeing that He is contrasting the will of the Son, and the mere permission of the Father.

Again on Zacharias XIII. 7: "Willingly then He laid down His life for us, God and the Father leaving Him to His own goodwill, as man, and so to speak, permitting that by His Blood He should purchase life for all, as I have said." (P.G. 72, 236). Finally on Psalm 68. 27: Because He permitted the Son to suffer, He is said to have given Him over. But it was not of necessity that the Son suffered, it was of His own free will; for His Passion was a saving Passion .... But because in His good providence, as had been predestined, the Father gave His own Son over to death, it does not follow that those who were the ministers of His will were free from guilt. For they did not act as they acted with the purpose of pleasing God .... . Christ humbled Himself: but they put Him to death." (P.G. 69, 1173).[175]

Chrysostom anticipated Cyril, in the explanation He gave of the verse: Having joy set before Him, He endured the cross (Hebr., II. 2) : "The prince of this world cometh, and in me hath not anything:" Therefore had He willed it so, it was possible for Him not to come to the Cross. (In Epist. ad Hebr., hom. 28, n. 2. P.G. 63, 194). Ambrose apparently agreed with Chrysostom: "Had Christ so willed, He need not have died. But He did not think to avoid death as being in terror of it, nor could He have saved us better than by dying" (De excessu fratris sui Satyri, I, 2, 45. P.L. 16, 1327). Theodoretus certainly followed Him: "Scripture says, that it would have been possible for Him, had He willed it so, not to suffer". (In Epist. ad Hebr., XII. 2. P.G. 82, 679).

The unknown author of the commentary on the Epistle to the Hebrews erroneously attributed to Oecumenius speaks in a similar manner: "It would have been permitted to Him, says the Scripture, to live in joy and glory in this world .... But He did not will it so; rather He willingly bore the Cross" (In Epist. ad Hebr., 12, 2, P.G. 109, 424). Theodorus Andidensis re-echoes this teaching almost in the words of St. Gregory Nazianzen, just cited: "The bishop prays that the sacrifice of His Only-Begotten Son who is offered in sacrifice, may be acceptable to God the Father. For indeed He who is sacrificed offered Himself as a Victim to the honour of His Father although the Father did not demand it." (Brevis commentatio de divinae liturgiae symbolis ac mysteriis, n. 19. P.G. 140, 444). The great Anselm illustrates this teaching very lucidly: "Though not subject to the penalty of death since He was sinless, that Man freely gave up that life which was His for the honour of the Father: when for the sake of justice, He permitted it to be taken from Him .... And hence the human nature in that Man, did not suffer under compulsion, but in perfect freedom .... Not under a compelling obedience, but by the disposition of the divine wisdom. For the Father did not compel Him to do what He ought not to exact from Him; and this great honour which the Son so freely offered to the Father in such goodwill, could not but be pleasing to the Father .... Thus that Man redeems all others, estimating what He freely gave to God as a substitute for the debt which they owe to Him." (Meditatio. II, P.L. 158, 766).

St. Bernard's words are few but profound: God the Father did not demand the blood of the Son, but He accepted it when offered; not thirsting for blood, but for our salvation; because in blood was salvation. Salvation surely, and not as Abelard understands and writes, the mere display of love." (De erroribus Abelardi c. 8, n. 21-22. P.L. 182, 1070).

(b) Patristic Solution of a Scripture Difficulty.

An objection may be urged here: During His life Christ often mentioned the commands of the Father. Chrysostom solves the difficulty: "This commandment I have received from the Father. What commandment was this? To die for the world. But surely He did not wait to hear the command and then acquiesce. What need for Him to learn? No sane person would say so .... When He says that He received a command from the Father, He means that what He does is pleasing to the Father: lest after His death it might be thought that the Father had abandoned and betrayed Him. Long before this He had said: The good shepherd giveth His life for His sheep thus showing them that the sheep were His, that it was all His own work, and needed no command." (In Joann., hom. 60, n. 2 and 3. P.G. 59, 331; compare hom, 62, super Joann XV. 10, col. 412).

Cyril of Alexandria writes in a similar strain: "The question now arises: where and how did Christ observe the command of His Father. Let the wisdom of St. Paul lay bare the mystery, when He says: .... He humiliated himself, becoming obedient unto death, even unto the death of the cross .... That is to say, seeing that God and the Father decreed to save sinful man, and that no created being could do this, being far above the power of any creature, the Only-Begotten Son of God, knowing the will of God and the Father, submitted to this dispensation. He went down into the depths of voluntary infirmity, even so deep as to humiliate Himself to the most shameful death .... Hence in the voluntary obedience of the Son, we have the fulfillment of the will of the Father. This will the Son says takes for Him the place of commands. For He is the Word, He knows the counsels of the Father and penetrates His ways. Indeed being the wisdom and the power of the Father, He does His will, holding that will in place of a command, and after the manner of men, calling it such." (In Joann., XV. 9-10 P.G. 74, 373).

Janssens (Summa Theologica etc., t, 5. p. 62 I—62 2) following Pesch (De Verbo lncarnato p. 339) discounts these sayings of Cyril and thinks to have deprived them of value by this consideration: "The Fathers were arguing with Arians, and maintaining the equality of the Son and the Father against them. The Arians based their contention on the command, arguing therefrom inferiority and compulsion in the Son". Furthermore He is surprised that "Petavius, Cardinal Franzelin, Stentrup and others did not perceive this sufficiently. " But as a matter of fact, though it may have been before the Nestorian controversy, the point at issue is the "economy of the flesh" assumed, is "Jesus proposing Himself to US as an example of holy conversation" and "therefore made under the law and deigning to assume the poverty of our condition" (col 372 ff.). What He said was Christological, and most effective in our sense—that the man Jesus must not be held to have been subject to commandment properly so-called.

As a matter of fact Janssens himself did not impose the same limitation on the teaching of Anselm, which is in perfect harmony with the solutions of Cyril and Chrysostom. Anselm says: "Thus then He freely obeyed the Father, in that of His own will He chose to do what He knew would be pleasing to the Father. Finally since the Father gave Him that good will, though it was a free will, yet He is not without reason said to have received it as a command of His Father. And so in this way He was obedient even unto death; and as the Father gave commandment, so did He; and from the chalice which the Father gave Him He drank. For there is perfect and absolutely free obedience of the human nature, when it spontaneously submits its own free will to the will of God, and when it carries out in action the good will which it accepts without any demand whatever having been made. (l. c.). Hence St. Thomas reflected the true sense of the Fathers when He interpreted St. Paul: He that spared not His own Son, but delivered Him up for us all: "The Father delivered Him up to death in decreeing that He was to be incarnate and to suffer, and by inspiring in His human will that charity whereby He would of His own free-will submit to the Passion: Whence it is said that He hath delivered Himself. (Eph. V. 2) (In Rom. 8. lect. 6). Here that decree of the Father, concerning both the Incarnation and the Passion, cannot be looked upon as a command; since it is agreed that God did not command the Word to be made Flesh. It must therefore be taken for an eternal ordination and pre-definition. In the Summa Theologica (3 S. 47, 3, o) St. Thomas gives a fuller explanation—He tells us that on the side of God the Father nothing is added to this pre-definition of the death and to the inspiration of the will but the mere permission of deicide.

Seeing therefore that, according to St. Thomas and the Fathers, all these commands (in Scripture spoken of as commands of the Father to Christ) are dealt with as pre-ordinations of divine providence, we may say with Suarez that: "In His human nature Christ desired nothing but what the divine will predisposed Him to desire, according to St. John VIII. 29: For I always do the things that please Him, " and that: "In His human will, Christ desired nothing but what He knew was the will of God. " Meantime however He would add that: "For an obligation of precept, the superior must desire to impose an obligation on the inferior to do something, and He must make known practically this will, by a command to the inferior .... . It is one thing therefore to predetermine my act of will, and another to bind me to that act. Hence although Christ clearly saw the will of God predetermining all His actions, He did not for that reason see that He was bound ex praecepto to do them". (De Incarnatione, pars. 1, disp. 37, s. 4, n. 9). God could certainly predefine Christ, even with Christ's own knowledge, to many actions in no way obligatory. It may not be said either that these pre-definitions, by the fact of their being known, are real commands. For, according to what is undoubtedly the truer teaching, all the actions of Christ were predefined and Christ knew these pre-definitions, so that the absurdity would follow that all the actions of Christ were acts under precept, and that He could do nothing that was not a command—an untenable position, as Basil points out: "If the Saviour could do nothing of Himself but by the command of the Father, He is neither good nor bad. For He is not the cause of any of the things that are done. What an absurdity, that other men could of their own free will do good or ill, and the Son who is God do nothing freely"? (Adversus Eunomium, I. 4. P.G. 29, 697). Possibly Basil may have had in mind the higher nature of Christ, but if His argument applies at all, it must apply equally to the human nature of Christ. For that Christ as Man knew of these pre-definitions has nothing whatever to do with His obedience or humiliation, it belongs rather to the dignity and eminence of the Son of God; hence Cardinal Franzelin justly wrote: "These commands are eternal designs which the Father communicates to the Son, not by commanding but by generating Him" (De Verbo lncarnato, 3. p. 445). And indeed it was befitting that they should be communicated by intuitive vision to the human intellect of Christ.

Dismissing therefore the objection that a command to submit to death is implied, we may add that in Isaias LIII. 10, there is at least a suasive proof of this immunity from the obligation of submitting to death. For it is predicted there that He will enjoy an eternal posterity, that is redeemed mankind, if He offers Himself in sacrifice. The tenor of the words of Isaias here implies a choice, as no obligation to offer sacrifice is asserted, except on the supposition that our Redemption is willed by Christ Himself.

Hence we conclude from the teaching of the Fathers: I) that we must deny any suggestion of a positive command from the Father to Christ; and 2) that Christ gave himself over to death, free from the obligation to do so.[176]

B. Opinion Affirming The obligation

Though it is shown by the authority of the Fathers that Christ was free from any obligation to submit to death, nevertheless Christ Himself confesses in the garden that He is under an obligation. For in the garden He endeavours without success, to bend the Father's will which is contrary to His own; and here too He says that He cannot refuse the chalice, not as though lacking the power to do so, but clearly as bound by an obligation to accept it.

Moreover we must admit that St. Paul gives praise to Christ for at least some kind of real obedience in His Passion and death: He humbled himself becoming obedient unto death, even unto the death of the cross (Phil., II. 8). For as by the disobedience of one man, many were made sinners, so also by the obedience of one, many shall be made just. (Rom., V. 19). Add to these testimonies the following from the Epistle to the Hebrews: Whereas He was indeed the Son of God, He learned obedience by the things which He suffered (Hebr., V. 8).

Besides, the very same Fathers whose authority we appealed to on behalf of His immunity from the obligation, attest this obligation of obedience. Hilary, for instance, explaining in what sense the Son says that the Father was greater than He: "Referring all this to obedience to the Father's commands, He added: But that the world may know that I love the Father, and as the Father hath given me commandment, so do 1: Arise, let us go hence. Rising He hastens to consummate the sacrament of His Passion, because He loved to give effect to the command of His Father." (Trin. I, 9, c. 55. P.L. 10, 316).

Ambrose speaks of His obedience as one of the duties of Christ, just as obedience is one of our duties: "The Arians are wont to object the obedience of the Son, because it is written: and being made in the likeness of men, and in habit found as a man, He humbled Himself becoming obedient unto death (Phil., II. 7-8). He first said man and then unto death, to show that the obedience unto death was not an obedience of the divinity, but of the Incarnation, in which He took upon Himself our duties as well as our name" (De Fide, 1, 2, C. 10 P.L. 16, 578).

Cyril is more forceful. He affirms the free will of Christ in choosing the Passion, and says nevertheless it was not lawful for Him to refuse the Passion. Thus on the words: Father, if thou wilt, remove this chalice from me. But yet not my will but thine be done (Luke XXII. 42) : "Certainly His Passion was not involuntary, abhorrent though it was because of the ignominy, and because of the ruin of the Jewish synagogue which it implied .... Seeing however .... that it was impossible for Him not to undergo His passion, He chose it with the assent of God and the Father. Though what happened was in no wise agreeable to Him, nevertheless He made the Cross voluntary for Himself, for the life and the salvation of all mankind." (In Luc. XXII. 42. P.G. 72, 920-924). Compare what St. Thomas writes In Philip. II, I (infra).

It would appear that obedience in the proper sense is meant, for it is stated that the death of Christ would not have the same title to glory, without the special merit of this virtue of obedience.

C. Solution Of The Seeming Contradiction

Hence we find in the Fathers an apparent contradiction. For on the one hand they say that the Passion was not obligatory, and that no command whatever was given to Christ; then again the same Fathers state that the obligation of suffering unto death was incumbent on Christ. Two considerations will help to solve this difficulty.[177]

The first consideration is that the positive law of God and the demands of the natural law are not the same. For no matter how free Christ may have been from positive commands, as imposed upon Himself especially—such as the particular command to submit to death till He could never be free from the obligations of the natural law, for the natural law is co-created, so to speak, and made known to Him by God, with the very principles of man's created nature. Anselm, replying to this objection by Boso, explains this matter very clearly. "God the Father did not deal harshly with that Man, as you seem to think, He did not give Him over to the sentence of death, the innocent for the guilty. For He did not force Him to an unwilled death, He did not permit Him to be slain against His will; on the contrary that Man freely submitted to death in order to redeem mankind."

Boso then puts forward as an objection the words of Scripture on the obedience of Christ, on the command of the Father, on the admission of necessity in the garden; He concludes: "All this goes to show that Christ went to death rather at the command of obedience than of His own free will". To this Anselm replies: "Evidently you are not making a proper distinction between what He did under the command of obedience, and what He suffered because He was obedient, though obedience did not demand it. Boso: "Please state this more clearly". Anselm: "Why did the Jews pursue Him even unto death?" Boso: "Because in His words and in His life, He steadfastly maintained truth and justice. Anselm: I say that God demands this of every rational creature; and every rational creature owes this to God by obedience. Boso: Undoubtedly. Anselm: Therefore that man owed this obedience to God the Father, the humanity to the Divinity; and the Father required it of Him. Boso: Certainly.

Anselm: "There then you have what He did as demanded by obedience .... Hence God did not compel Christ in whom there was no sin to die; rather Christ submitted to death of His own accord, not under obedience to give up His life, but under obedience to maintain justice. He persevered so bravely in this attitude, that because of it He suffered death." (Cur Deus Homo" 1, C. 8 and 9. P.L. 158, 370-371).[178]

The doctrine of Anselm is plain: Christ was subject to the precepts of the natural law, whereby a man is bound to seek justice; that obligation and no other intervened in His Passion and death. Carefully considered, the words of St. Thomas (In Philip., II. 8) will be found to convey the same meaning: "Had He not suffered from obedience, He would not have been so worthy of praise: because obedience gives merit to our sufferings. But how was He made obedient? Not by the divine will, because that is the rule; but by the human will, which is ruled in all things according to the will of the Father: Nevertheless, not as l will, but as thou wilt (Matth. XXVI. 39). And Paul fittingly introduces obedience in the Passion, because the first prevarication was committed by disobedience .... That this obedience is great and commendable is clear; because obedience is great when it follows the command of another against one's own will". The holy Doctor is praising that obedience in Christ, which as a rule bestows merit on our sufferings. Now as a rule we are not bound by special divine commands to endure this and that suffering, but we certainly are subject to the divine law, in which justice and truth are prescribed, including for instance, the profession of faith which often entails great sufferings, sufferings which are particularly meritorious, because they are signal examples and glorious results of subjection to God. Thus therefore we must interpret obedience in the Passion and death of Christ, as flowing from the obligations of the natural law.

But even yet the difficulty is not fully met. For admittedly it was because of justice which opposed their injustice, that the Jews hated and persecuted Him. Yet seeing that it was possible for Him to turn aside from His enemies, as He had often done before, or at least deliberately to keep out of their way, it can not be said that He submitted to death because of the obligation of the natural law, unless it be shown How the turning away from death, which was lawful for Him at one time, had now become unlawful.

Therefore our second consideration is this:

Apart altogether from any positive command, it is possible for anyone to be bound by the natural law to a thing in itself not at all obligatory, if a person of His own free will were to contract an obligation of religion towards God in respect of this thing. This may be in two ways: either by the making of a vow,[179] or, by the sacrificial offering of a victim to immolation. In the case of a vow, one is obliged to do what He formally vowed He would do. In the case of a sacrifice, He is bound to consecrate by immolation the victim which He offered to immolation. This second obligation is by far the more sacred, for what is not only promised but actually given over into the ownership of God, cannot be withdrawn from His altars without dreadful sacrilege. Now, to say that Christ made a vow, would be gratuitous and rash, for there is not the slightest indication of a vow in the Scriptures. On the other hand, there undoubtedly was a sacrificial offering—in the Supper; that offering, once made, bound Christ by a religious obligation to dedicate His Victim; in other words the very strictest obligation of duty bound Him to undergo death for us, and not to avoid it.

By this means we can reconcile all that we are taught by the Masters of faith:

1) The Father never imposed on Christ the command to die.

2) There was no obligation To Give Himself, To Offer Himself, To Deliver Himself to death in sacrifice (Isaias, Hilary, Chrysostom, Ambrose, Cyril, Anselm, Bernard, Thomas).

3) Nevertheless He was under obligation to go from the Supper room to His Passion (Hilary), to die (Ambrose), to accept the Passion in the garden (Cyril), and there to obey the divine law unto death (Thomas).

Hence we arrive at the conclusion that Christ contracted this last obligation, not from the nature of things, nor from a command of the Father, but because He offered Himself to God in the sacrament.[180]

St. Bernard (loc. cit.) sums up the whole matter in a few words: "God the Father did not demand the Blood of the Son, but nevertheless He accepted it when offered.

§6. Triple Conclusion

A. The Nature Of The Oneness of The Supper And The Passion

We may now settle the question left unanswered in a former chapter (chap. II) : precisely where and when did Christ make the sacerdotal, sensible, ritual offering of Himself to that immolation, undergone in the Passion, by which we are redeemed?[181] For we see that in the Supper, where He gave His Body and Blood under the species of bread and wine, "He offered Himself to God to be immolated for us". Therefore it was in the Supper actually that Christ ritually offered the sacrifice of His Passion.

The Supper and the Passion therefore are mutually complementary. In the Supper began the sacrifice which was to be immolated on the Cross. True, the real immolation is in the Passion and Death, but the essential character of a liturgical offering is in the symbolic immolation of the Supper pre-eminently.[182]

Hence the sacrifice of the Redemption on the Cross and in the Supper was numerically one; we may not say that there was one preliminary sacrifice in the Supper, and another succeeding it on the Cross; but in the Supper room was made the bloodless offering of that immolation in blood which was to be undergone on Calvary. For this representative immolation, or immolation by similitude, or mystic immolation which Christ made in the Supper was that by which He offered the real proper immolation in which He was slain at the hands of His enemies. And so it was, as the ancient Gallican Liturgy was wont to say, that in Christ offering, the image of immolation passed into true sacrifice.[183] So that Christ made only the one sacrifice, and made it only once; consequently, if the sacrifice is considered primarily as the act of the Priest, it is more prominent in the Supper, where Christ ritually offered Himself to death; if it is considered primarily as the slaying of the Victim, it is fully implemented on the Cross, on which offered by Himself Christ dies.[184]

To guard against erroneous interpretations, we must make five observations.

First observation.—The unity constituted by the Eucharistic oblation and the immolation in blood, is not, nor need it be, unity in genere rei; but it is unity in genere signi for it is a oneness as sacrifice; and sacrifice as such, is a sign, an actually existing sign of invisible and internal dedication. The case of the sacrament of the Eucharist is similar, in so far as the form of consecration is not one thing with the sacramental species in genere rei but only in genere signi or sacramenti.[185]

Second observation. Moreover these two parts, Eucharistic oblation and immolation in blood, do not form one sign after the manner of merely integrating parts (such as are the quantitative or homogeneous parts of a body which integrate or make up the whole body), but after the manner of constitutive elements (such as in material bodies are the principles constitutive of the essence). One of these parts, the oblation, is after the manner of determining form. The other, the immolation in blood, is after the manner of the matter, sustaining and being the subject of the determining form. By this union the sign is completed in its essence, to be just this sign and not that, the mode of union being comparable to that by which all corporeal essences arise from the union of an indeterminate but determinable principle (which we in our philosophy call technically matter) and a determining principle (which we call form).

For just as in the Eucharist we see that the continuing appearance of bread and wine is determined to a sacramental essence (as significative and indicative of the presence of Christ) by the transient form of the consecration, and, when it has received this formal element, is itself (as theologians say) sacramentum tantum; so too in the sacrifice of Christ, the whole Passion up to the death is determined to the sacrificial essence by the Eucharistic offering of Christ, and having received this formal determination, it actually is, and is called, the sacrifice of the Redemption, going on uninterruptedly in the process of completion (fieri), until with the occurrence of death it is complete in facto esse).[186]

Indeed the unity resulting from both the constitutive elements in the sacrifice of Christ is far stricter than the unity in the example of the sacrament as above, because the offering commenced in the supper actually continues on through-out the whole passion, whereas in the sacrament the words are transient. For that offering must be lasting, which once made, far from being revoked, is kept up by continued acts of the free will, showing themselves forth outwardly through so many act's and words of the Lord until His death.[187] There is not a single moment in which the same Priest who offered in the Supper does not appear to us continuing His offering, confirming and sanctioning it, not only internally but also outwardly, that is by the shedding of His Blood.

Hence we conclude how truly it was said by the Council of Trent, that Christ offered Himself in blood on the altar of the Cross (on the altar of the Cross He once offered Himself in blood .... of which bloody offering etc., D. 940). For though the Council did not attribute to Christ any act of blood-shedding (that being entirely the action of the Jews), and hence does not represent our Priest as making use of any liturgical rite in blood (which would be contrary to the Scriptures and all the Doctors), yet even on the Cross, while Christ shows that He does of His own free will feel pain and taste death, by this very fact He, so to speak, seals and confirms, robes and crowns His solemn offering, which He bloodlessly celebrated in the Supper.[188]

Hence too we see, when comparing the Mass with the sacrifice of our Lord, how aptly the Council declared: "For the Victim is one and the same, the same now offering by the ministry of priests, who once offered Himself on the Cross, only the manner of offering being different. (ibid.,). For the difference between our offering and the offering of Christ is this, that ours is altogether bloodless,[189] while the offering of Christ on the Cross was in blood in the manner shown. Nevertheless there was not one offering on the Cross and another in the Supper, but it was numerically one same offering: made ritually in the Supper, continued morally on the Cross; all this because of the identity of the Priest and the Victim,—a rational Victim whose constant will in suffering unto death was none other than the continued will of the Priest faithful in sacrifice to the end.[190] Moreover in the Supper Christ offered without us, in the Mass He offers through us; hence again the manner of offering is different.

In the third place, if we compare the Mass with the Supper, note with what truth Christ said Do this, namely, do what I have done; for apart from the difference of time it is absolutely the same. For the Supper looked to the immolation as future, the Mass looks to it as past.[191] Hence it is that the Supper looked forward to the Passion, which the Mass presupposes. Therefore the sacrifice celebrated in the Supper was not completed immediately upon the consecration (and transubstantiation), but it continued on until Christ died. Our sacrifice of the Mass on the other hand, is completed immediately upon the consecration, because the immolation has already taken place. The difference between the Supper and the Mass therefore, is the difference between the offering of a victim to be immolated and the offering of a victim already immolated. This does not imply any particular excellence of the Mass as compared with the Supper, as if the Mass were in itself more complete as sacrifice than the Supper; for as we have said the Supper looks forward, the Mass presupposes. The Mass presupposes something which the Supper did not presuppose (for it had not yet taken place). The Supper looked forward to something to which the Mass does not look forward (for it has taken place). But each has its own complement in the immolation of the Passion—though differently, because of the difference in time.[192]

Finally, note that the numerical distinction between our sacrifices and the sacrifice of the Cross does not in any way militate against the numerical oneness of the sacrifice of the Cross and the Supper. There are just as many sacrifices as there are priestly offerings—your sacrifice is not mine, this morning's sacrifice is not yesterday's, and no one of them is the same as that which Christ made without us. On the other hand, His offering was, as we have said, numerically one, made in the Supper and perfected in the Passion.

Third observation. Although the Passion unto death together with the Supper was one sacrifice, nevertheless in its hearing upon our salvation the necessity of the Supper was not so great as the necessity of the Passion. For suppose that there was not the Supper rite, the Lord could have used any other rite or number of rites for His purpose, had He so willed. As a sacrifice therefore, it was not a matter of absolute necessity (de jure, so to speak) that the Passion should be linked with the Supper. But our Lord did de facto select the Supper rite in preference to others, and so joined the Supper to His Passion unto death, in the one sacrificial action. In the economy of our salvation therefore, once supposed that our salvation was to be attained by the real and true sacrificial death of our Lord, in itself the Supper was by no means as necessary as the Passion. Hence we may distinguish various degrees of necessity. In the first place, our salvation could have been attained without the Redemption. Secondly, our redemption was possible without sacrifice properly so called. Thirdly, a real and true sacrifice of our Lord was possible without the Supper. It was offered with the Supper because such was the good pleasure of our High Priest according to the order of Melchisedech.[193]

Fourth observation. Although the formal element of the sacrifice is conspicuous in the Supper chiefly, while the material element is mainly in evidence in Christ's torments, it is nevertheless in the Passion unto death rather than in the Supper rite that the sacrifice has its absolute and substantial reality. Three examples illustrate this.

The first example is from actual material things. For it is to material things that the distinction of matter and form belongs, being applied to moral entities by a certain analogy. When we ask which of the two component elements in material things is more justly called the actual substance, the reply must be that the matter (assuming that it is endowed with form) is more properly and strictly called substance than the form, for it is there after the manner of subject, and the subject in act is the substance itself. Hence, the offering being presupposed, the Passion is truly, substantially, and absolutely the actual sacrifice of the Redemption. None the less the Supper can be truly called Christ's sacrifice and so the sacrifice of our Redemption, in as much as the form has its subsistence from the subject.

We take another example from rational psychology. As students of St. Thomas are aware, the holy Doctor teaches that choice is "materially" and "substantially" in the will, though it is "formally" in the reason (1-2. 13, I) : for the act of choosing is undoubtedly in the will, but on the condition that some direction has been received in the will from the reason. Hence when we are concerned with an intrinsic ordination of two elements to each other, something may be "materially" in the one element and "formally" in the other, in such a way however that it may be said to be "substantially" there, where it is "materially": provided that the formal element is presupposed. And such is the case in the sacrifice of our Lord. It must be said that the sacrifice is substantially and actually where it is materially, namely in the Passion: not however to the exclusion of the Supper, in which too the sacrifice is truly found, in so far as sacrifice strictly denominates the sacrificial rite celebrated by the priest.

Finally, a third example may be taken from the sacramentum tantum of the Eucharist. For this is said to be substantially permanent and therefore to consist, as a real thing, of the species, although it has as its form (according to the teaching to be explained below) words which are past. So too the sacrifice continues in its course throughout the whole Passion, although it began in the oblative rite of the Supper now past. Nevertheless just as the actual words are also the sacrament in so far as their indicative virtue is linked up with the signification of the bread and wine, so also the Supper is the sacrifice, in so far as the significative virtue of the Supper affects the immolation of the Passion in that sensible and enduring manner which we have explained above

Fifth observation. As in the sacrificial, so in the moral order the part played by the Passion, wherein Christ permitted Himself to be immolated, is more important than the part played by the Supper, in which He consecrated Himself to God for death. For although in other sacrifices, where the priest and the victim are not the same, it is possible for the work or the service of the subject submitting to immolation to appear of less value than that of the person performing the outward rite, here however, where Christ offers Himself in sacrifice, the grandeur of the work and the service stand out more luminously in the heroic anguish of the Passion unto death, than in the offering of the Passion under a symbol: so that it is most of all from the element of suffering, that the ritual element acquires and derives its moral value.[194] In a word: the sacrificial concept and the moral value are more inherent in the Passion than in the Supper. So at last we know how we must interpret the words of St. John in the Gospel, as referring to the Passion and to the Eucharist, but in due order: Having loved His own who were in the world, He loved them to the end (XIII. I).

Such then is the unity of the sacrifice of our Lord, as we derive it from the quotations of the written or the traditional word of God, set down above, throughout this chapter; but especially from the Epistle to the Hebrews which inculcates so definitely, not only the oneness of the Victim (one sacrifice, Hebr., X 12), but also the oneness of the sacrifice of our Lord (nor yet that He should offer himself often. IX. 25 Christ was offered once, IX. 28; for by one oblation He hath perfected them that are sanctified. X. 14).[195] Therefore as God has joined together the Supper and the Cross, has included the Cross in the Supper, and consummated the Supper by the Cross, we must beware of separating where there is no separation but only unity. What God hath joined together, let no man put asunder.[196]

The Most Rev. Alexander MacDonald, whom we have already quoted, teaches this same written doctrine: "Jesus Christ instituted His sacrifice at the Last Supper, and took measures to perpetuate the institution. There He made the sacrificial offering of His Body and Blood, there He bore the part of a priest forever according to the order of Melchisedech .... Then the rite being accomplished, laying aside His priestly dignity, He went forth in His character of predestined Victim, suffered Himself to be led as a lamb to the slaughter, and so finished on Calvary what was begun in the upper room. He offered as priest, and priest forever according to the order of Melchisedech. He suffered as Victim, as that Lamb which was slain from the foundation of the world. He was not yet Victim in act when He made the offering; He was less than priest, yea in the strong words of the Prophet, as worm and no man, when He finished the sacrifice .... True, He was Priest also in Calvary, Victim also in the upper-room .... But to speak of what was uppermost in each case, He was Priest in the Cenacle and Victim on Calvary. Therefore He offered His sacrifice truly and literally as a priest forever according to the order of Melchisedech". (The Sacrifice of the New Law, in Ecclesiastical Review, Dec. 1, 1905, vol. 23, p. 629).[197]

B. The Oneness Of The Apparent Sacrifice Of Bread And Wine And of The Real Sacrifice Of The Body and Blood Of The Lord.

Here again we have the solution of the doubt already spoken of (see p. 9) :—whether in any sacrifice there can be, beside that which is the res tantum and that which is res et signum, something after the manner of signum tantum? It is clear that in the sacrifice of Christ besides the offering of the body and blood to death, which was at the same time sign and reality, in the appearances or the species of the bread and wine there was also something in the nature of sign only, for the sacrifice of the Body and Blood of Christ is represented under the form and the appearance of a sacrifice of bread and wine—and this is a sign only. Christ therefore offered Himself under the appearance of the Melchisedechian sacrifice.

When we arrive at the consideration of the Mass, and not of the Supper, we shall find every page of our theology and liturgy telling us of this indivisible duality—the apparent sacrifice of bread and wine, and the real sacrifice of the Body and Blood of Christ.

Justin was the first of the Fathers to mark clearly the significative role played by the bread and wine in the constitution of the sacrifice of the Mass, where He said:

"We are taught that this food which is eucharistiated, from which our flesh and blood are nourished by its change,[198] is the Flesh and Blood of the Incarnate Jesus". (Apol. 66. P.G. 6, 428-429). "He has the same thing in mind where He says that Christians offer the sacrifice in remembrance of their solid and liquid nutriment, wherein is also made a memorial of the Passion which the Son of God went through for them". (Dial. I 1 7, P.G. 745-748). In other words these two things,—bread and wine-being naturally changed into our own flesh and blood, are chosen most fittingly to confer on our sacrifice significative power in respect of the Body and Blood of Christ slain in the Passion.[199] And thus we note the aptitude of the bread and wine to designate the propitiatory Victim, composed of bloodless flesh and shed blood. Irenaeus in the fourth book Adv. Haereses (17, 5. P.G. 7, 1023) follows the same line of thought as Justin, where no matter the interpretation given to His words (to be treated later), we must take Him to see in the very properties of the bread and wine as food and drink a particular suitability for our sacrifice: wherein praise is given to God "who gives us nourishment. " This particular aptitude of the bread and wine is therefore its aptitude to give an Eucharistic signification (that is, of praise and thanksgiving) to our sacrifice of the Mass.

Now our Mass sacrifice is both Eucharistic and propitiatory. Hence these two concepts of the aptitude of the bread and wine in our Mass, as noted by Justin and Irenaeus, are by no means in conflict, rather they are complementary one to the other. From Justin and Irenaeus onwards this has become the teaching of the Church. Our sacrifice has, so to speak, a twofold character: the one real, as far as concerns the Body and Blood of Christ, the other apparent, in the bread and wine only.

Isaac de Stella (Epistola de officcio missae) in the XII century explained this teaching in the following words: "The visible priest approaches .... to offer visible victim—victims of the earth, earthly, on a visible material altar, consecrated visibly with material oil. Everything is external here: all that is done, and how it is done, is openly seen by all .... Since then amongst those foods without which our animal life is not sustained, the chief ones are bread and wine, by them is aptly offered the strength and the vigour of our animal life. For they are the chief constituents of our sustenance and represent the whole of it. Hence what more can one who desires to be at peace with His God do, than out of His poverty to offer His whole sustenance, He slays all that lives the animal life in Him". (P.L. 194, 1892-1893). Evidently these words bear on the external appearance of our sacrifice, they have not yet touched its true internal reality. Hence Isaac goes on: "Nevertheless there is needed a more sublime plan. In this action the slave does everything that the slave can do, but even then He does not fully satisfy; He himself can do no more, yet all He can do is not enough .... and so He raises himself in prayer, and turning to Him who can do all things, He says: "This our offering do thou, O Lord, vouchsafe etc., .... Hence as a new priest, not now the Melchisedech of old, and having, not from the fruit of His labour, nor from the earth, .... but .... from the divine gifts and presents, a celestial Victim of Flesh and Blood from heaven—this He offers, not as before in fear, not offering a victim of servitude, but saying in joy and exultation: a pure victim to thy most excellent majesty, etc. " Here we have plainly indicated the true reality of the saving sacrifice, beneath the veil of the symbols of the Melchisedechian sacrifice.[200]

Turning to the Greek Fathers, Nicholas Cabasilas [201] in His Liturgiae Expositio in the XIV century, has a full chapter, the title of which runs: These gifts are offered to God, as the first fruits of human life. Here we find the following words: "We consecrate these gifts to God, as signifying the first fruits of human life, for they are the nutriment of man, by them His corporeal life is sustained; and not only does the nutriment sustain life but it also signifies it. Naturally it is man's life, and not any other kind of animal life, that is signified by the bread and wine. "For what is suitable for man only, that we call human nutriment, for it is proper to man only to bake bread that He may eat and to make wine that He may drink." (Liturgiae expositio, c. 3. P.G. 150, 377).[202] Human life therefore is dedicated to God under these species. But what human life is dedicated to God unless the human life of Christ is in the first place thus dedicated? He intimated by the addition of the sacramental words that He was given over to God. Secondly, our human life is dedicated, its spiritual and invisible immolation is promised and vowed to God by the sensible immolation of our heavenly Victim. Defending Catholic dogma against the heretical archbishop Hermann of Wied, the Canons of Cologne published their Antididagma in the XVI century [203]

In this work they carefully distinguished that the part played by the bread and wine in our sacrifice is that of sign or symbol, when they say: "The slanderous accusation which Luther in His own evil-minded way, maliciously and perfidiously makes against the Church, as though we placed our hopes of salvation in bread and wine, and wished to work out our salvation in the sacrifices of insensible things, is fraud and sheer sophistry. Has such a thing ever been thought of? In the visible symbols of Bread and Wine we offer to God the Father with thanksgiving, the Invisible Mysteries of the Passion of Christ. (fol. LIX). Having delivered this caution the same fathers go on to speak faultlessly of "that outward and significative sacrifice of bread and wine."

Foremost amongst the Scholastics in the explanation of this point of doctrine is Gnus (De locis theologicis, 1, I. C. 12), who transfers from the sacrament to the sacrifice the well-known distinction between signum tantum and res et signum. He remarks that "just as Catholics speak of the sacrament of the Eucharist in two different ways, so too they speak of the sacrifice of the Eucharist. For there is the sacramentum tantum, namely the outward appearances of bread and wine which contains the Body and Blood of Christ. Likewise there is the res et sacramentum, namely the Body and Blood of Christ which are contained within, under cover of the species or appearances. Similarly too in our Oblation and Mass, there is the outward sacrifice of the species of bread and wine .... ; there is also the inward sacrifice of the Body and Blood of Christ, which especially we offer to God the Father under these species."

If you ask how this duality of the apparent and the real sacrifice is compatible with the unique oneness of the Victim (which is none other than the Body and Blood of Christ) or, how this duality does not militate against the identity of our Victim with the Lamb immolated on the Cross (not under any covering of bread and wine), Vasquez will give you an answer which is both acute and penetrating. Making a distinction between the reality which is offered and the action whereby it is offered, He then applies and restricts the sacrificial role of the bread and wine to the act of offering, and not to the reality offered: "I maintain that the appearances of bread and wine .... do not pertain essentially to the reality offered .... but to the offering and the sacrificial action .... I said that they (the species) pertain to the bloodless offering, for since the entire bloodless offering is situate in that signification by way of action .... and since the species pertain to this signification, it is necessary therefore that they pertain also to that immolation. "[204] That is to say, as the species (as will be explained later in this work) coupled with the words, serve to effect the transubstantiation, wherein the offering is made, they certainly take part in the constitution of the offering.

All this can and must be transferred from the Mass to the Supper, so that we believe that under the appearance of bread and wine there was enacted at the Supper, the real offering of the Flesh of the Lord to the slaying, and of His Blood to the shedding (= the reality and the sign); and in this undivided sacrifice of the Passion was signified, as reality only not only the internal adoration and thanksgiving of Christ, but also as we said above, our own alienation from sin, which in turn was not only signified but also effected.

C. The Offering To Death In The supper Requires The Presence of Christ In The Eucharist

In the Supper therefore Christ offered His own death: that is, while He appeared to hold the bread and wine in His hands, He really sacrificed the Body of His torment and the Blood of His Passion.

We may now ask whether the real presence of the Body and Blood was necessary in the constitution of this sacrifice. For once granted that Christ willed to offer Himself to death in the apparent sacrifice of the bread and wine, would not this presence of the bread and wine, as representing symbolically the slaying of the Body and the shedding of the Blood which was to come, be quite sufficient for the constitution of the sacrifice? If so, the presence of the Body and Blood in the offering was superfluous, no matter what it may later contribute to the partaking of the sacrifice.

This is by no means so. Indeed if the Body and Blood were not present under the species or appearance of bread and wine, it would be impossible to say that Christ's death was offered in the Supper, or that He dedicated Himself to God in the Supper. For seeing that sacrifice is both reality and sign, it must on the one hand include something in the nature of a sign, as indicative of our interior consecration [205] it must include on the other hand a reality, an actual handing over of the victim [206] transferred, so to speak, from my hand into the hand of God, for instance, by being placed on the altar (as substitute for the divinity) or something of that kind. Consequently had Christ in the Supper merely held bread and wine in His hands, there would have been no sacrifice of His death, the flesh and blood of the victim to be immolated would not have been offered; for in that case the victim itself would not have been actually presented, dedicated, and transmitted to God, at most it would have been offered in figure.[207] This offering in figure could in turn be twofold. It could be a real absolute sacrifice of the bread and wine, relative to the sacrifice of the Cross in the same way as the ancient sacrifices were relative: that is, as type to antitype; or even without the sacrifice of bread and wine, it could be just a manifestation in symbol of the death of the Lord to come. Evidently in this latter case there would be no sacrifice, but merely a kind of prophetic adumbration of a future offering. In the former case, we have indeed the offering of a banquet, but (as with the Hebrews in the past) a merely figurative offering of the Body to be immolated and of the Blood to be shed; but the reality itself is not presented to God: nor therefore is the death of Christ really offered, though possibly it is represented as to be offered. The victim of the Passion could of course be actually and really offered in a symbol of the Passion, but this would have to be a symbol not merely foreshowing the gift, but showing it actually present. The death of Christ therefore will not be offered in any symbol or sacrament, unless the symbol or sacrament contains the true Body and Blood. Besides, to say that the Body and Blood were given to God for us under the appearance of bread and wine would be vain, if the Body and Blood were not present; it would be vain to say that the covenant was sanctioned in the Blood or in the chalice, unless it were the chalice of the real Blood. Everything would be fictitious, Christ's offering, His propitiation, His covenant with God, Truth itself would not have told the truth—which God forbid .... Hence every opponent of the Real Presence [208] excludes every sacrificial concept whatsoever from the Supper, reducing the whole Great Action to a mere symbol. Like Julicher, they say that it merely announces in parable the coming death, or like Spitta, that it is an allegorical anticipation of Messianic joy, or some such thing.[209]

But with the Catholic Church, placing our faith on the words of Christ, we believe that it is a sacrifice; and hence also we accept the Real Presence of the Body and Blood of the Lord. So necessary is this Presence, that apart altogether from the partaking by way of banquet of the Victim, it would still be required essentially and substantially to constitute the sacrifice. Hence it is commonplace with our theologians, both mediaeval, like William of Paris and post-mediaeval, like Vasquez, to teach in reference to the Mass, what we have established in reference to the Supper: namely, that the sacrificial character of the rite requires the Real Presence of Christ, so that once you have established the sacrifice, by that very fact you have proved the Real Presence.

Having recounted the four benefits of the Mass, William of Paris continues: "For it is not true, as some heretics foolishly imagine, that a mere designation, or symbol, or figure of that life-giving Body and precious Blood, suffices to effect these four benefits; on the contrary these four benefits necessarily require the true reality of the life-giving bread and wine strictly present .... It is impossible to appease the anger of God by a mere empty designation, or to reconcile an offended God without reality in the sacrifice .... Were it otherwise, figures or pictures would suffice to procure these benefits, and we would trouble ourselves with the solemnities of the Mass to no purpose, when pictures of altars and of the sacred offerings would be easily sufficient for these four benefits. Such an absurd theory would force them to admit, that a mere picture of the deluge actually submerges the world without the real deluge, that a picture of the fire by which the lower world is consumed is now consuming it, that a picture of bread nourishes, that a picture of wine slakes thirst and inebriates. So glaring therefore is their folly, that they fail to realize the nature and the power of the efficacy which they attribute to symbols and to reality." (De sacramento eucharistiae, c. 4. P. 443).

Vasquez similarly: "Nevertheless it must be carefully noted that to constitute a commemorative sacrifice, really and properly so called, a mere symbol of the death of some being, a symbol which in itself contains in no way that real being whose death is represented, does not suffice; for it could not then be said that the real being whose death is represented is offered in sacrifice; it would not be a real commemorative sacrifice, rather it would be merely a symbol and a shadow of sacrifice .... ; for instance, if the teaching of the heretics were true that the Body and Blood of Christ is not under the appearance of bread and wine, the death of Christ would indeed be represented, as even the heretics themselves admit, but Christ would not be said to be really and truly offered in sacrifice, but merely in figure. How can anything be said to be really and truly offered in sacrifice concerning which the action of the offering priest is not really directed upon the thing itself but only upon some figure and image of the thing? (In 3 S. disp. 222, C. 8, n. 66 and 67). These words of Vasquez on the Mass apply equally to the Supper, in which there cannot be a true sacrificial offering of the Body and Blood of Christ, a true sacrifice of the death of the Lord, unless the Victim of the Passion be hidden beneath the symbols of the Passion.

In our time considerable light has been thrown on the question by the collective pronouncement of the English Bishops, in which they defend the condemnation of the Anglican Orders; in the section where they maintain that the true character of the priesthood is bound up with the truth of the sacrifice, and the truth of the sacrifice with the Real Presence: "Such being our doctrine of the Eucharistic Sacrifice, its essential dependence on the doctrine of the Real Objective Presence is manifest. For, if there were no power in the words of consecration to make the true Body and Blood of Christ really and objectively present on the altar, we should not have on our altars the Victim of Calvary, and without its victim the sacrifice could not subsist." (A Vindication of the Bull. Apostolicae Curae, by the Cardinal Archbishop and Bishops of the Province of Westminster, London 1898, n. 12, P. 26).

These words refer primarily to the Supper. They ask: How could the Victim of Calvary be given over to God, were the Victim not present there?

§7. The Council of Trent

One may appeal to an explicit statement or definition of doctrine made by the supreme authority of the teaching of the Church in two ways. The authority of a Council or Pope may be claimed for a doctrine in question, as explicitly expressed in a conciliar or papal definition (e. g. the Council of Trent defines that "there are seven sacraments of the Church"). Or an appeal may be made to definitions of Council or Pope bearing on the matter in question, but not stating explicitly the disputed doctrine, and by argument from these definitions one may reach a conclusion of greater or less probability. We follow this latter course here, and in appealing to the authority of the Council, our argument is twofold: first, from the history of the definition which the Council drew up; second, from the tenor of the definition.[210]

A. The History Of The Definition

During the deliberations of the Council, the wording of Chapter I (on the institution of the Mass) in which the Supper is dealt with, was attacked by a considerable number of the bishops, as we see in the Historia Concilii Tridentini, 1, 18, C. 2 and 9), and Acta genuina Concilii Tridentini, as published by Theiner (t. 2, p. 79 foll.) at much greater length.[211] Amongst these assailants there were three parties. Some desired that there should be no conciliar definition at all in respect of the Supper. Others said that the notion of offering or sacrifice should not be linked in the definition with the Supper. Others would exclude from the definition any idea of a propitiatory offering. The main argument of all of them was the great difficulty that would arise in dealing with the heretics, were another sacrifice attributed to Christ before the sacrifice of the Cross, particularly a sacrifice of propitiation.

The general supposition of all these fathers was that the Supper and the Cross were to be counted as two sacrifices.[212] This supposition was common to a number of champions of the Decree issued by the Council. Not all of the fathers however held this view; upon the others, who denied that there were two sacrifices, lay the task of defending the oneness; and thereby finally a safe clear way was prepared for the definition of the Council as it stands. Hence it was their effort particularly that was responsible for the wording of the Decree. We have two opinions therefore among the fathers, one to all intents and purposes opposed to the wording of the decree, the other favourable. We ask you therefore which of these opinions is more akin to the definition-the opinion of those who wished it framed, or those who opposed it. The answer is surely obvious.

Here are a few examples used by the theologians responsible for the decree in the manner stated.

First of all, Eustace du Bellay, Bishop of Paris, spoke thus: "Christ offered Himself in that Supper .... yet there were not two offerings but one with that of the Cross, for He had commenced the Passion in the offering of the Supper and the offering was made continuous with that of the Cross: and it was expiatory, for it was the same as that of the Cross" (Acta Genuina, t. 2, p. 82).

Later the Bishop of Fiesole (p. 83) followed Him, then the Bishop of Leira added: "There is therefore one Victim and one Offering, that of the Supper and that of the Cross, and the two are indivisible. (p. 84).[213] The Bishop of Calve said: "The offering of the Supper and that of the Cross is one and the same." (p. 92). The Bishop of Niochensis " .... And this (sacrifice offered in the Supper under the appearance of bread and wine) is the same as that of the Cross, which was commenced at that time." (ibid.). Earlier the Bishop of Palermo: "Proves that Christ offered Himself in the Supper .... And then He commenced His offering, He finished it on the Cross". (p. 79). Meantime the Bishop of Viviers,[214] Campagna (p. 86-87), Bida,[215] etc., spoke in the same strain.

To these theologians we owe in a great measure the first chapter on the institution of the Mass.

Turning to the original form suggested ten years before for the Decree, the grave censure of Adolphus III von Schaumberg, the very learned and intensely Catholic Archbishop of Cologne who replaced the apostate Hermann of Wied in the See, should be remembered. There seem to have been some theologians who attributed to Christ a kind of Aaronic priesthood in the Passion, reserving the Melchisedechian priesthood for the Supper alone. Against them He upheld the one priesthood of Christ, conclusively vindicating this priesthood from the undivided oneness of the sacrifice of the Lord: "Because Christ was priest forever according to the order of Melchisedech, He really did retain in the sacrifice the figures of the bread and wine, but nevertheless He changed the things themselves into nobler things, and into a more powerful sacrifice, and offering to the heavenly Father in the Supper, under these species He offered with His own hands the Body and Blood in a sacrifice which would be consummated and completed on the Cross by the hands of others .... . Just as the priesthood of Melchisedech adumbrated the most divine priesthood of Christ, so too the edible and visible sacrifice of the same Melchisedech signified the most divine sacrifice of Christ, which was crushed by torment but was not consumed on the Cross, and is now eaten by us in the sacrament .... . His hour had come wherein He would be betrayed into the hands of sinners, and pass from this world to the Father. And so when that hour had come, He offered Himself to the Father with His own hands; the wicked to whom He was handed over, did not cease to strike Him, they tormented, scourged and crucified Him, until they had consummated on the Cross the Sacrifice which was offered in Bread and Wine. Holy Scripture and all the Fathers are in accord with this teaching. They do not separate the sacrifice of the Cross from the sacrifice of the Supper, rather they include the Supper with the Cross, in the manner in which it is possible to include it, that is in the bloodless manner; in this manner nevertheless, it was none other than that selfsame sacrifice which was then being offered .... until it should be consummated. As this is most true Catholic doctrine, it seems that some few words of the suggested statement of doctrine, which could be construed into a different opinion, should be changed." (Le Plat Monumentorum Concilii Tridentini, t. 4, p. 408-409. Compare p. 410-412 at greater length in the same sense). The words which displeased the Archbishop in the original draft were: "Christ on the Cross fulfilled the office of the priesthood of Aaron", etc. After a few days the fathers, heeding the very salutary admonition of their colleague, deleted these words from the Decree.[216]

Hence the teaching on the oneness of the sacrifice of Christ not only had a share in the framing of the Decree, but it also corrected an earlier and faulty form suggested for the Decree.

B. The Tenor Of The Decree

The Council did assert a oneness between the Mass and the Cross in the following words: "For the Victim is one and the same, the same now offering by the ministry of priests, who once offered Himself on the Cross, the manner of offering alone being different. " In other words, although there are as many sacrifices as there are offerings, at the same time there does exist a real oneness between the Mass and the Cross, by reason of the Victim which is offered (i. e. Christ). Now either (a) the very Victim of the Cross, absolutely as such, is held to be offered to God in the Mass (in the manner to be explained at length below, in later chapters of this work) : and then this oneness which the Council maintains is quite plain to understand. Or, (b) Christ is held to be offered in the Mass, as affected by some kind of new real immolation (as a number of modern theologians say). Or finally, (c) Christ is offered in the Mass without any intrinsic condition of immolation whatever, whether of the past or now, as a few (though very able) theologians taught.

In this last case, as we shall show later in this work, the reality of the sacrifice seems to disappear, since there is no true victim, seeing that the Body and Blood of Christ have no condition of immolation whatever, except an extrinsic immolation, in the symbols. In the second case, where a new immolation intervenes, the reality of the sacrifice is certainly not destroyed, indeed it is overstressed; but now it is difficult to see how to keep intact the oneness of the sacrifice of the Cross and of the sacrifice of the Mass, as defined by the Council, which states that in all things they are the same, with one exception: only the manner of offering being different.[217] For it cannot be said that the Mass differs only in the manner of offering, when it differs also in the immolation; since one is presupposed as having already taken place upon the Cross, another now (not only numerically but specifically different) in the Mass.[218]

We are now justified in arguing from the Mass back to the Supper. For if Christ is offered in the Mass as already immolated on the Cross, He must have been offered in the Supper as to be immolated on the Cross. If we offer the death of Christ as having happened, He must have offered His death as impending (our contention). We cannot teach the one in the Mass without concluding to the other in the Supper. Hence unless you follow this teaching on the Supper, you can scarcely be in accord with Trent on the Mass.[219]

Two words of St. Peter Canisius written shortly before the proclamation of the Decree of the Council, accord perfectly with our teaching: "The sacrifice of the Mass duly weighed in all its aspects, is really the holy and living representation, and at the same time the bloodless and efficacious offering of the Passion of the Lord, and of that Sacrifice in Blood which was offered for us on the Cross." (St. Peter Canisius, Opus Catechisticum, de sacramentis, q. 7). The writer of these words implicitly taught [220] that having due regard to the difference of time and circumstances, the Supper was the bloodless offering of the bloody sacrifice which Christ was to consummate in the Passion and on the Cross.[221]


CHAPTER 4 : THE PARTAKING OF THE EUCHARIST BY CHRIST

§1. Scripture, the Fathers and Later Theologians

Did Christ partake of the Eucharist? A number of modern theologians say no; the earlier writers however say with remarkable unanimity that He did partake. We agree with them. For in the first place, in spite of the contrary assertions of Knabenbauer (In Matth. t. 2, p. 437 and In Marc. p. 378) and Berning (op. cit., p. 87 and 119), we have nothing in the Scriptures to show that Christ did not partake of the Eucharist, as Goguel (L'Eucharistie des origines a Justin Martyr, p. 80-81) among Protestants admits.[222]

Rather it seems that Holy Scripture does suggest the partaking of Christ at the Supper, for two reasons.

First, there was the Jewish custom that the head of the family should taste of the cups before passing them on to others (Goguel, l. c.).

Secondly, we have the words of Christ after the Supper in Matth. XXVI. 29 and Mark XIV. 25, in which He says that He will not drink from henceforth from the fruit of the vine, until He drinks it new in the kingdom of God.[223] These words have an anagogical sense, that is they are to be interpreted in a mystical sense, as referring to the condition of glory in eternal life. As the former chalice, that is the ordinary chalice, prefigured the new Pasch in the Blood of Christ and the kingdom of God to come on earth (Luke XXII. 18), so the second—the new chalice of the Eucharistic Supper—was the pledge of the kingdom of God to be consummated in heaven, and of communion with Christ to be enjoyed in glory without the veil of faith or sacrament; when Christ, Head among His brethren, will drink with us too, from the torrents of the joy of God, and will feast on His bounty, in the words of Luke XXII. 29-30: And I dispose to you, as my Father disposed to me, a kingdom, that you may eat and drink at my table in my kingdom, therefore when Christ says that He will not drink from henceforth of the chalice of the Eucharist, He confesses, or at the very least He implies, that He did drink of it with them at the Supper.

Chiefly however we rely on tradition. For, so far as I know, our view has no opposition from the Fathers, while numerous Latin, Greek and Syrian Fathers support it. In the first place we have Irenaeus, who affirms it explicitly: "Christ, coming to the Passion, in order to preach the Gospel of the revelation of His inheritance to Abraham and those with Him, after He had given thanks, and taking the chalice had drunk of it, and had given to the disciples, said to them: Drink ye all of this: This is my blood" (Adv. Haeres., 5, 33, 1, P.G. 7, 1212).

Hippolytus, disciple of Irenaeus,[224] against the Asiatic or Quartodeciman Catholics, defending the Roman usage, says that the Lord did not partake of the legal lamb on the night of the Supper. At the same time He distinctly says that the Lord "partook of the Supper". Hence the legal supper being excluded, we gather that our Lord partook of the sacramental Supper. Indeed according to Hippolytus our Lord's words in Luke XXII. 15: With desire I have desired to eat this Pasch with you before I suffer, could refer only to the sacramental Supper. And as a matter of fact, Dionysius Bar Salibi testifies that Hippolytus believed that in this expression Christ did not mean the legal or figurative pasch, but the true Pasch, to be fulfilled in the Passion and partaken of in the Eucharist.[225] Therefore according to Hippolytus Christ announced that He would eat the Eucharist. Eusebius of Caesarea interprets the desire of Christ in Luke XXII. 15, quite as plainly as Hippolytus, as directed to the partaking of the Eucharistic Pasch of the Passion of the Lord: "For these ancient or rather antiquated paschs which He was wont to eat with the Jews, were not desirable, but the new mystery of the New Testament which He gave to His disciples, was indeed justly desirable to Him" (De solemnitate paschali, 5, P.G. 24, 700).

We must take the words of Chrysostom (to be quoted directly) not as proving the matter in question from necessary principles, but as giving a probable reason for a fact already known otherwise. He writes: "And He also drinks of it. Lest hearing these words they would be perturbed and might say: What then? Do we drink His Blood? Do we eat His Flesh? (For when He had discoursed on this matter on another occasion, many were scandalized with these very words), and so in order that they may not be perturbed now, He Himself partook first, and thus prepared them to partake of the mysteries with a tranquil mind. So therefore He drinks His own Blood." (In Matth., hom 82, n. 1. P.G. 58, 739).

Hesychius too, referring to Christ in type, interprets the verse: the rest of the blood He poured upon the altar round about (Levit., VIII. 22-24) thus: "We know that Christ also did this; for He himself drank, and gave to His disciples to drink. He then pours the intelligible blood upon the altar, that is upon His own Body" (P.G. 428).[226] The Pseudo-Dionysius in the Ecclesiastica Hierarchia (c. 3, n. 3. parag. 1. P.G. 3, 428) speaks of Judas as "He who supped of the sacred elements together with the Lord with an unholy and discordant mind." These words plainly show the teaching of Dionysius—that our Lord supped with Judas in the sacrament. St. Eutychius of Constantinople (De paschate et sacrosancta eucharistia P.G. 83 bis. 393) follows Hippolytus; He writes: "This is the mystic Supper of which the Lord speaks in St. Luke: with desire I have desired to eat this pasch with you before I suffer. Before the Passion therefore He ate the Pasch, that is the mystic Pasch".

Theophylactus (In Matth. XXVI. . 28-29. P.G. 123, 445) says of the Eucharistic chalice:

"Having taken the chalice, Christ thenceforth rejects corporal drink." Euthemius Zigabenus adds the Eucharistic bread also: "And if He partook of the chalice, He certainly also partook of the bread (In Matth., XXVI. . 28-29. P.G. 123, 669).

We can also claim the support of the most illustrious of the Syrian theologians. Thus Aphraates, whose words we have cited above: "He ate His own Body, He drank His own Blood. " St. Ephraem, whose testimony Bar-Salibi cites in His Expositio Liturgiae, (c. 12, c. s. c. o. t. 93, p. 74) : "Mar Ephrem says: the disciples ate His Body, and He ate with them; they drank His Blood. and He drank with them."[227]

Tertullian heads the list of the Latin Fathers. He demolishes the error of Marcion who drew a distinction between the Creator and the Father, by pointing out that when Christ desired to eat the pasch, He consecrated the bread into His own Body; which He did not eat as the property of another but as His own: showing thereby that the Creator of the bread is His Father: "And so He proclaimed that He desired to eat the Pasch as His own (for it would be unworthy of God to desire what was alien). He made that bread which He took and distributed to the disciples His own Body, by saying: This is my body." (Adv. Marcion., 40. P.L. 2, 460).[228]

Cypnan comes next: "It would be impossible for us to drink the blood of Christ, if Christ did not first drink of the chalice, in which He pledged the believers" (Ep. 63, n. 7. P.L. 4, 379). How true these words are will be shown later.

Hilary expresses the same view, when He is explaining why He thinks that Judas did not partake of the Eucharist: "He, who was not to drink in the kingdom, could not have drunk with the Lord, for He had promised that all who were now drinking of the fruit of the vine, would drink with Him hereafter." (Commentarius in Matthaeum, cap. 30, n. 2. P.L. 9, 1065). If the others drank "with the Lord," the Lord also drank: if He did not, the others could not be said to drink with Him. We do not claim the support of St. Jerome with any great confidence,[229] from the Epistola 120, C. 2 (P.L. 22, 986). He is explaining Matth., XXVI. 29, that Our Lord said that henceforth He would not drink of the fruit of the vine, except with us in the kingdom of God: "He who is at the same time our table companion and our banquet, who eats with us and is eaten by us". I think that these words are not to be understood of Christ partaking with the disciples in the Supper, but rather with us in the Church. Our food is to do the will of the Father, in as much as by keeping His commandments, we partake of the same food as Christ, whose will it is to do the will of the Father, and Christ Himself partakes through us of the Eucharistic food within the Church.[230]

This interpretation of the words of St. Jerome will become still plainer when we consider the Commentarius in Matthaeum of Origen,[231] whence Jerome, though not stating this, derives His own commentary.[232]

Though we cannot confidently state that Jerome explicitly taught our doctrine, still He says that Christ drinking spiritually with us in the Mass, is represented under the guise and image, so to speak, of Christ drinking with the disciples in the upper chamber. This would be at least a suggestive argument that both Jerome and Origen believed that our Lord drank of the Eucharistic chalice with the disciples who supped with Him in the upper chamber.

We could not cite St. Augustine in De doctrina christiana, c. 3, n. 4 (P.L. 34, 37) as favouring our teaching with any certainty, because the passage in question shows variant readings. The Latin runs as follows "Sacramento corporis sui praegustato significavit quod voluit in one reading, while in the other "per gustatum" replaces "praegustato". With the first reading it would run "He signified what He wished by first tasting Himself the sacrament of His Body". The other reading would probably be "He signified what He himself meant by the sacrament of His Body by the sense of taste (meaning: when the disciples partook) ".[233] More to our purpose perhaps would be another passage from St. Augustine, on Psalm 68, 22 And they gave gall for my food He says: "What they gave was not food, for it was drink; but they gave it for food; because the Lord had already received food, and gall was put in it. He had already partaken of sweet food, when He ate the Pasch with His disciples; there He made known the Sacrament of His Body. Who are they who put gall into the sweet and delicious unity of Christ recorded by the Apostle: because one bread, one body, we are many .... but those who contradict the Gospel, as though persecutors of Christ .... What the Jews did then in order to put bitter drink into that food which He had already received, they also do who by their sinful life bring scandal into the Church; venomous heretics do this. " Augustine after His fashion has in mind particularly the reality signified and effected by the Eucharist, namely the unity of the Church; but He has this in mind not apart from the reality contained in the Eucharist, and which signifies that union, that is to say the Body of Christ: for He appeals to a supper held with the disciples, and that was the Paschal Supper in which the Body of the Lord was consecrated. Hence Augustine holds that the Lord partook of that Supper, that sweet food, before through the cruelty of the Jews He went up to the Cross.

Coming down to the Middle Ages, we find Rabanus Maurus (In Ruth, III. 7. P.L. 108, 1212-1213) distinctly stating that our Lord partook of the Body and Blood in the Supper, and that He distributed it to the disciples: And when Booz had eaten and drunk and was merry, He went to sleep by the heap of sheaves, and she came softly and uncovering His feet, laid herself down. : "Our Lord ate and drank when He gave the sacrament of His Body and Blood in the mystic Supper to the Apostles; hence it is written: His sons partook of the body and blood, and He likewise partook of the same. He was made merry, because He was assured of His own Resurrection and of our Redemption".[234]

Paschasius Radbertus applies our Lord's words: With desire I have desired to eat this Pasch with you before I suffer to the Supper of the consecrated bread and wine (In Matthaeum, I, 12 P.L. 120, 893). Rupert of Dietz cites with approval the words of Hilary quoted above (De gloria et honore filii hominis, 110. P.L. 168, 1544).[235]

From a host of writers, early and mediaeval, I have found one who is in open opposition to this thesis. Peter Pictavius writes: "He took with His hands only, sacramentally never; He gave to His disciples to partake of sacramentally; and hence He is said to have taken sacramentally, because He took it into His hands to give, not on His lips to eat", . (Sententiarum, lib. 5, C. I 3. P.L. 2 11, 1254).

This one exception apart, as far as I know, all the leaders of the schools, as Alexander of Hales (Summa, pars 4, q. 44, art. I, memb. I), Albert the Great (4 D. 12 15), St. Bonaventure (4 D. 9, I, 4), St. Thomas (3 S. 81, 1I), and all other scholastics who have dealt with the subject, have simply followed the early writers. Hence in His day Vasquez justly says.[236] "All the Catholic writers whom I have read, agree in this matter, and though the holy Doctor says there were some who thought otherwise,[237] He does not mention their names." Luther too in a later age denied it in the book De abroganda missa privata (in 3 S. disp. 216, n. 81 sq.).[238]

The Coptic, Syrian and Armenian Liturgies all agree with the Fathers and writers of the Church. Three anaphorae written in the Coptic, termed the anaphorae of St. Basil, St. George, and St. Cyril,[239] and the Greek anaphora of St. Basil also speak of the chalice of the Blood as tasted beforehand by the Lord (R. I, 15; 31; 47; 67).

In the Liturgia Jacobi Edisseni (VI-VII. century) from the Syrian Liturgies, the drinking of the Eucharist is not mentioned, but the eating is: "He broke, He ate" (R. 2, 373); in the Liturgia Dioscori episcopi Insulae Kardu (XIII. century, cf. B. LVIII) : "He broke and after He had communicated, He gave to His twelve" (R. 2, 495); and in the Liturgia Ignatii Bar Ma'dani, XIII. century, compare B. ibid. : "He broke, He ate" (R. 2, 514). The same Syrians speak of the drinking, not the eating in their very old Liturgy of St. Basil: "He tasted and distributed to His disciples" (R. 2, 552). And finally in the Liturgia S. Lucae vel Duodecim Apostolorum (R. 2, X notes its antiquity), both the eating and the drinking are mentioned: "He broke and ate"; "When He had tasted, He gave" (R. 2, 171).

The Armenians, both Catholic and schismatic (far apart though they are in the use of liturgical books) say that the Lord drank: "He drank and gave" (Le Brun, op. cit., t. 3, p. 203; Max Saxon. Missa Armenica, p. 34, b. 437).

In the Liturgia Nestorii, of the Nestorians or the Chaldeans, we have eating and drinking "He broke and ate": "He drank and gave" (R. 2, 629, compare Max Saxon, Missa Chaldaica, p. 32).

Though we have no example of this mode of expression in the liturgies of the Greeks, it should nevertheless be noted that the Armenian are derived from the Greek Liturgies (Cf. Le Brun, op. cit., t. 3, p. 42) : Max Saxon, Missa Armenica, p. VI. and the Syrian Liturgia S. Basili (compare B. LVIII).

Apparently however far more ancient than all these liturgies is the Egyptian anaphora published by Dom Cabrol with the assistance of P. de Puniet (in D. A. C. 2, 18921893, where we read: "Having taken the chalice, after He blessed and drank, He gave to them, saying etc."

§2. Intrinsic Reason

Having all this cloud of witnesses in favour of the partaking of the Eucharist by our Lord, we now ask why or how this partaking was appropriate. It is easy to infer the reason of this appropriateness from our remarks on sacrifice in general. We saw that when the offerer partakes of the victim, some kind of consummation of the sacrifice is added. As a matter of fact most of the sacrifices prefiguring the sacrifice of Christ possessed this additional complement—particularly, and above all the others, the paschal sacrifice wherein the lamb, that is the victim, was eaten. In other sacrifices we have the sprinkling of blood round about the altar and on the people who assisted, instead of the eating of the victim. In Exodus we see that this was done by Moses. It was fitting therefore for Christ, the one most perfect Priest, offering the most perfect sacrifice of the Redemption, antitype of all the other sacrifices, to do all those things which would perfectly complete the sacrifice and fulfill the figures.[240] And so He desired to eat the Victim of the Passion, the Victim which He had made in the offering of the Passion in the sacrament. Hence when He received the consecrated bread, He was partaker of the Lamb given over to slaughter for the sins of men; when He drank of the chalice He sprinkled Himself and the people also with the blood of the Victim. This is really the thought of those Fathers who like Chrysostom (l. c.) and Euthymius (l. c.) imply the resemblance between the Old Testament celebration in Exodus, and the celebration of the Supper in the New—Hesychius (l. c.) terms it aspersio—; it is especially the underlying thought of those Fathers who say that Christ ate the very same Pasch which He suffered.

Thus we have sufficient reason for Christ's partaking, now we ask: How He could so partake? The matter here now is: the partaking by the offerer of the thing offered. Here the offerer and the thing offered are the same, and thus it would seem that partaking could not have place. For it looks absurd to speak of communion of Christ as Priest with Himself as Victim. Union is of things that are different and there is no difference or diversity in the one Christ discharging the two offices. It is for this reason that some modern writers have said that, considered in the light of dogmatic principles, the sacramental partaking of Christ is unthinkable. (Berning, op. cit., p. 87 following Schegg to whom He refers) [241] But what all our doctors have taught, what is even commemorated actually within the sacred action in so many languages by the Church herself in her liturgies, should not be unthinkable. Following St. Thomas (4 D. II, 3, I, 3m) therefore we teach a sounder doctrine: though no union between Christ Victim and Christ Priest would be effected, yet the partaking of Christ could have significative virtue, and this in many ways, as discussed above on the partaking of sacrifice in general.

In the first place, it had an anagogic significance, as it is called, in relation to the world to come: and this whether considered in Christ as an individual person, or in Christ as Head of the human race. Considered as an individual person, Christ given to God as Victim, has become (as we have said) the Lamb of God, the bread of God, as it were, the nutriment and food of God Himself, hence a thing divine and heavenly. For seated as Guest of God, He received as it were from God's table, sacred foods, pledges of the good things of heaven, He certainly signified His own future glorification, not as one whose right of entry into possession would be nullified had He not partaken of the Supper, but as anticipating by partaking of the Supper the glorification already pledged to Him by God.[242] Hence after the Supper Christ most opportunely begins to pray, with the words: Father, the hour is come, glorify thy Son (John XVII. 1). As Head of the human race, the partaking of Christ signified that the approach to the goods of God was thrown open to His members; Irenaeus (l. c.) calls this, the opening of the kingdom. Hence again the fitness of the words in the sacerdotal prayer: Father, I will that where I am, they also whom thou hast given me may be, that they may see my glory, which thou has given me (John XVII. 24) : for by these words He secures for all His friends the fruit of His communion with the Victim, which is the glory which is to spread from the Head to the members.

In the second place, Christ's partaking signified the sanctification of the present life, and this again in two ways, under His title as individual, and as Head. First, under His title as individual, for by actual partaking of the sacred banquet He was shown as sanctified. Not of course that a new sanctity accrued to Him, but He is graced, so to speak, with a new title of sanctity, in so far as being Himself feasted with the Flesh of the Victim dedicated to God, He was replete with that sacredness which accompanies the Victim, sacredness derived from its approach to God to whom it has been made over.

Second, under His title as Head, He purchased this sanctification for us, as our Priest and Liturgus, to flow from the Head to the members, to whom under Christ and in Christ it pertained to imbibe that sanctity by partaking of the divine banquet.

In the third place, a final significance of our Lord's partaking, contributes not a little to a more complete comprehension of the influx of Christ as Head upon the members. The Son of God Himself supping with us, and also admitting us throughout the ages to be His table guests, showed thereby that we who eat with Him the bread of God, make with Him one household of God, one family, one stock. Not only did He signify this effect of family relationship, but by signifying it He brought it about. Thus He, the principal Guest of His Father, the Guest by nature, secured for us, His invited fellow-guests, a share with Him of every good signified for Himself by the Supper. For our oneness with Christ Banquet (by partaking of the Body and Blood of Christ), is not apart from our oneness with Christ fellow-guest (in the fellowship with Christ partaking of the Eucharist);[243] but just as the partaking of Christ dedicated ours, so too it invigorates it. The Fathers and Doctors already cited have testified to this. They say that we cannot eat of the bread and drink of the chalice alone, we must partake under Christ and with Christ and in Christ who sups with us and through us in the Church, where He is at the same time our banquet and through us and in us our fellow-guest. So then it was necessary, not only that He should give us this food, whereby we should be vivified, but also that He, who was alone competent to give us the power to partake, should first partake of it Himself in the Supper. And surely it is no surprise that we could not eat of the bread of the children of God, without being initiated into it by Him who is the Son of God, to whom alone it belongs to feast of the table of the Father. By Himself eating and drinking therefore, Christ initiated us to the mysteries of the table of the Eucharist, receiving nothing for Himself, but bestowing on us from Himself the active participation in the banquet, as well as the fruit of the partaking.

Hence it is that the signification of sanctity implied in the sacrificial banquet is verified in us by the efficacy of the sacrament. In other words because the signification was so true in Christ our Head, that because of the oneness of identity there was in the partaker (Christ) the very sanctity of the Victim, just as in the Victim there was the very sanctity of God, so it comes about that in us, the members of Christ, the reality of this signification is shared. Now in us the reality of the signification implies efficacy, because a sanctity which we did not possess previously cannot be truly in us, if it is not actually produced in us.

Therefore the efficacy of the sacrament flows down to us from the perfect reality of its signification in Christ. And so from the Only-Begotten to the brethren, from the Head to the members, there descends, according to the promise of the Gospel, both grace and truth. All this Christ meant in His prayer: For them do I sanctify myself that they also may be sanctified in truth. That is, scarcely have I acquired the sanctity of the sacrifice for myself, when I bestow it on my fellow-guests at my Supper.

The words of Rufinus of Aquileia, though more generally applicable, are particularly to the point here: "Blessings will be upon the head of Joseph and upon the crown of the brethren, whose head He was. All these blessings are fittingly said to be upon the head of Christ, from His head they came down also to the crown of those, over whom He is Head. And the only reason why the Incarnate received these blessings was, that the Father had bestowed them on Him, and He in turn would bestow them on believers; and that He being made mediator between God and man, human nature which, because of its present infirmity, was incapable of receiving the blessings, might receive them because of His mediation, because of His partaking and bestowal of them, as He also says: For them do I sanctify myself." (De benedictionibus patriarcharum. I, 2. bened. Joseph. n. 2. P.L. 21, 321). But is not the greatest of all blessings that sacred eulogia in which Christ gave us to partake of what He had received?

Hence the error in the reasoning of Petrus Pictaviensis, when He writes (l. c.) : "Where reality is, the sacrament is not necessary. But Christ was the reality abiding in Himself, and by partaking He would not be united to Himself, He was rather the One to whom we should be united by such partaking. He did not need this partaking of the sacrament, nor could He partake of it. " Against this contention we maintain that, though it was not necessary for Christ, yet it was necessary for us that Christ should partake, and accordingly it was fitting for Him. Nothing being more fitting than that He Himself, first anointed, should then anoint us with divine sanctity.

Another consideration remains, one which the earlier scholastics discussed: Can Christ's partaking of the Eucharist be said to be sacramental and spiritual or not? Amongst the various answers to this question, that of St. Thomas who holds the affirmative against St. Bonaventure appeals most to us (In 3 S. 8 1, I, 3m; 4 D. II, 3, I, 4m).[244] Christ partook sacramentally, because not only what He partook of was in itself a sacrament, but He also partook of it after the manner of a sacrament, that is, for a sign.[245] He partook spiritually, because in the case of one who receives sacramentally to receive spiritually is to receive with the mind conformable to the symbol, that is not fictitiously. And certainly Christ did not receive fictitiously, inwardly dissenting so to speak, from what He outwardly signified; rather His mind and soul were inwardly conformed to what was signified outwardly. True indeed no effect accrued to Him. But this was not due to any want of efficacy in the rite, but to the condition of the Subject incapable of increase, because He already had all perfection in the highest degree. Hence He profited nothing from the food, because He Himself was the food and the profit. And in this last point is found, as we said, the highest and most perfect reality of signification in the rite itself, as well in the fountain of all the efficacy in our partaking of the sacrament.

This we have thought necessary to say in respect of that first communion of Christ our Saviour, which was His last also, but which is now consummated in heaven, where the Son of God is feasted in His whole humanity and in all His members, with the glory which He has from the Father, which is proper to Him as the Only-Begotten.


CHAPTER 5 : THE SACRIFICE OF CHRIST CONTINUED IN HEAVEN

When Christ died laden with pain and sorrow, was this the end of His sacrifice, or did it in some way continue on? As offering or immolation nothing could be added to it. The Body of our Redeemer, the price of the world's Redemption, was sufficiently offered by the hands of Christ, and was sufficiently immolated by the hands of the Jews; there is now no place for any further offering on the part of the Priest, or immolation of the Victim. But could it not be, as we have shown (chap. I) to occur in other cases, that here too there might accrue to the sacrifice completely enacted an added perfection coming from God and consummating the Victim as such, thus crowning the work of man by the divine acceptance? Now the sacrifice of Christ did not lack such a consummation, but is in the eternal enjoyment of it, being consummated by His glorious Resurrection and ascension into heaven, where He lives as Victim abiding forever.

We shall prove this by a threefold consideration of Christ:

First as Victim.
Second as Altar.
Third as Intercessor.

§1. Christ as Celestial Victim

A. Scripture Testimony.

In the Epistle to the Hebrews (IX, 1-24), the priesthood of Christ is exalted above the Aaronic priesthood, in the comparison which is made between the entrance of the pontiff once a year into the holy of holies and the entrance of Christ into His glory. Just as the pontiff bore with Him the blood of the sacrifice, through the first portion of the tabernacle into the inner shrine, so too Christ passing through the mortal and corruptible state of His humanity (in which He offered Himself to be immolated to God), into the condition of flesh sanctified by celestial glory, presented the Victim of His sacrifice before God. Hence it is, that Christ, though offered in sacrifice once only, at the end of ages (Heb. IX. 25-28; X. 11-15; VII. 27), is nevertheless an eternal gift, a ransom, an offering always present in the sight of God (VIII. 3, IX. 24).[246] Moreover in so far as He exhibits Himself to God as Victim, just in so far does He fulfil the office of mediator and intercessor, or priest, forever making propitiation to God for us (ibid.).

He could not continue to hold this twofold office of Priest and Victim, were it not after He had died, having conquered death, He should remain forever living (VII. 24-25).

II. In the Apocalypse Christ is described as:

1) Now standing in heaven before the altar in the condition of victim (V. 6, compare V. 2, V. I 2) and at the same time making men priests to God (V. 10, compare I. 5-6).

2) An altar is built before the throne of God (VI. 9, VIII. 3-5, compare XI. I, XIV. 18), a living and a speaking altar (XVI. 7, compare IX. 13).

3) A heavenly temple is seen (XI. 19, XIV. 17, XV. 5, compare XI. 1, XIV. I 8, XV. 6-8, XVI. 17).

4) It is declared plainly that in the New Jerusalem which is to succeed the Church militant, there would be neither temple nor light, except God and the Lamb.

Under these sacrificial symbols and metaphors we have an indication of some kind of heavenly and eternal worship, consisting in Christ's presentation of Himself in the sight of God, as once slain, and since then abiding, forever distinguished by some immolational quality unto the praise of God and the glory of the saints.

B. The Testimony Of The Fathers

We have seen that the Fathers link the Supper and the Passion together. Now we may examine how they knit together the Supper and the Passion with the Resurrection the Ascension and the glory in heaven, so that the sacrifice, once enacted on earth, continues on in eternal consummation in heaven.

(a) The Sacrifice And The Resurrection

This connection may be shown in two ways:

1) directly, by a consideration of the Victim;
2) indirectly, by a study of the Priest.

The Victim Perfected By the Resurrection

The mind of the Fathers appears first in their exposition of the new Pasch. For they see the antitype of the Jewish paschal sacrifice not in the Supper or the Passion alone but with the Resurrection conjoined. St. John Chrysostom, setting himself to explain why in the figurative Pasch the Jews did not see the true Pasch save obscurely in aenigmate, attributes to the true Pasch three elements: the Supper, the Resurrection and the Ascension with the acquisition of celestial goods to be distributed to us. For us these three elements make one integrally perfect sacrifice, the antitype of the paschal sacrifice of the Jews:

"Let us study the old pasch and the New, and then you will find the excellence of the New Pasch. Because the Jews did indeed celebrate the pasch, but they celebrated it as in a glass darkly. For these hidden mysteries of the New Testament never entered their minds, they did not know what these things were, which were foretold by the mysteries of the Old Testament. True, they saw the lamb slain, they saw the blood of the animal and the doors sprinkled with it: but that the Incarnate Son of God was to be slain, that He would redeem the whole world, and that He would give His blood to drink to the Greeks and the barbarians, that He would open heaven to all, that He would place the gifts of heaven at the disposition of men, that He would bring His own crucified flesh into the highest heavens, far above the armies of the angels and archangels and all the powers, and that He would place it at the right hand of the Father, sitting on the royal throne, resplendent with ineffable glory: this surely no one of their race foreknew or could have conceived". (In 1. Cor., hom. 24, n. 2. P.G. 61, 288).

Clearly Chrysostom considered the celebration of the Eucharist, the death, and the entrance into glory, as the one consummated fulfillment of the one paschal sacrifice.

We have something very similar in the Epistola heortastica of Theophilus of Alexandria. He connects immediately the entry of our Lord into the Cenacle with His entry into the Holy of Holies, the sanctuary of eternal redemption. He desires us "to draw aside the veil of words, and thus with unimpeded vision fix our attention on the feast of the passage of the divine Pasch, calling out to Jesus: Where wilt thou that we prepare the pasch? The disciples hearing from Him that it was to be celebrated in the Cenacle, were lifted above earthly things, and with the speed of thought eagerly hastened in to the Holy of Holies; where Christ Himself entered for us, and abrogating the figurative function of the high priest, obtained eternal redemption for us, appearing on our behalf before the very face of God" (P.G. 65, 53 56).[247]

Of the Fathers of the West, Bede is careful to remind us, that in the mystery of the paschal night, not only is the Resurrection commemorated, but the Passion and the Supper with the Resurrection: "The solemnity of this most sacred night and of our redemption which we celebrate, was mystically designated long ago among the ancient people of God .... The redemption of that people [from the bondage of Egypt] was a type of our own spiritual redemption which was accomplished on that night by our Lord rising from the dead .... The immaculate Lamb came and deigned to be immolated for us, He gave His own Body and Blood as the price of our salvation: submitting to death for a time, He conquered the sway of death for all time .... ; He is the Lamb who refreshes us with the sacred offering of His Body and Blood, lest we die. Therefore just as on this night in Egypt when the lamb was slain, the houses of the faithful were marked with its blood, and its flesh was eaten, the Lord came suddenly, and punishing those who remained without a share in the heavenly mysteries, He saved those whom He found imbued with the saving sacraments: so too when our Lord and Saviour had offered His own Body and Blood as a Victim to the Father for us, He overcame the power of the devil, and crushed the pride of His satellites (namely, the unclean spirits); He tore out the bolts of hell, and released the elect who though calm and tranquil were detained there, and on this very night rising from the dead, He conducted them to the joys of the kingdom of heaven .... . Not only did He release the just who were in hell, but also, for those still in the flesh whom He knew to be His own, those who, He foresaw, would believe in Him at the end of time, By His Death and Resurrection, He procured the remedy of salvation. For us too, even before we were created, He consecrated the spiritual nutriment whereby we would be recreated .... Justly then on this night, we too being mindful of our Redemption, immolate anew to God the most holy Body and precious Blood of our Lamb by which we have been redeemed from sin." (Homil. lib. 2, 1. P.L. 94, 138-139). Note all that the Pasch of the Lord embraces in the mind of Bede: the offering of His Body and Blood made in the Eucharist, the acceptance of death as immolation, the resurrection to glory: while refreshment from the sacred offering is not omitted.

Bede gives the same explanation very concisely elsewhere: the Lord "at the appointed time, eating the desired pasch with His disciples, offers, at the morning's dawn for the faithful. To partake of the most pure consecrated mysteries of His Body and Blood on the altar of the cross, as the Unleavened Bread of the Land of Promise (In Luc XXII. 13. P.L. 92, 595).[248] The meaning is: The Eucharist, succeeding to the legal pasch, was enacted in the Supper, it reached the culmination of its sacrificial truth on the Cross, and was finally given to man as heavenly food in the newness of the Resurrection. The author of the work De Officiis, attributed with some doubt to Bede, also tells us that in our celebration of the pasch, we join the Passion and the Resurrection: "Not only do we celebrate the day of the paschal resurrection, because He rose from the dead on that day, but also because of the other sacraments which are signified by it. For as the Apostle said: He was delivered up f or our sins, and rose again f or our justification, the passage from death to life was consecrated in the Passion and the Resurrection of the Lord. (For this reason we use the term Pasch, a Hebrew word, meaning passage or Passover)." (P.L. 94, 536).[249]

Secondly, the mind of the Fathers is still clearer from the comparison which they make between the customary offering to God of the sheaf on the tenth day of the month Nisan (Levit., XXII. 10-14), that is the first fruits of the earth, and Christ in His Resurrection presenting to God on that same day the first fruits of our redeemed race. Sometimes they interweave this comparison with the comparison of the paschal lamb.[250]

From the many we select Eutychius, Confessor and Pontiff, who knits together the Supper, the Passion and the Resurrection: "At the beginning of the sixteenth day, which we call the day of the Lord, our Lord rising from the dead offered Himself in place of the sheaf to God the father for the salvation of the whole human race .... Just as rising from the dead, and offering Himself to the Father for us, He abrogated the type of the sheaf, so too on the morning of the fourteenth day, He offered Himself mystically and by anticipation, and taking the place of the lamb, He became Himself its antitype. Therefore the mystical (i. e. the significative or the symbolic) is here the beginning and the pledge of the pragmatic (i. e. the signified and real). The pragmatic is the consummation according to the words: I will not eat of it, until it be fulfilled in the kingdom of God my Father. For this latter had place in His holy Resurrection—for this is the kingdom of God .... That this is so, see how we die mystically in holy baptism, and afterwards in martyrdom, or even without martyrdom, we die pragmatically. Our mystic death is not different from our pragmatic death, but is consummated by it. Therefore the Mystic is not separated from the Pragmatic, though it is consummated by it. Hence also it is that the Church commemorates the fourteenth day on Holy Thursday, on which day long ago the Lord mystically immolated Himself. She celebrates the consummation and the fulfillment of the Mystic feast in the Holy Resurrection, which took place at the beginning of the sixteenth day, or the day of the Lord which we now celebrate." (De paschate et sacrosancta Eucharistia, n. 4-5, P.G. 86 bis, 2396-2397).

Connect these words with what He had just written: Before the Passion He ate the Pasch, that is the Mystic Pasch. For it would not have been called the pasch without the Passion.[251] Therefore He mystically immolated Himself, when, after He had supped, with His own hands He took bread gave thanks and broke it, and became Himself the antitype." (Ibid., p. 2, col. 2393). Thus does Eutychius link the Passion with the Supper and the Resurrection with both, making one whole sacrificial complexus of the three. The Supper commences the sacrifice, the Passion fulfils it, the Resurrection consummates it. For the Supper was the beginning and the pledge of what it signified; the Passion delivered up the Victim; the Resurrection, consummating the Pasch, added the final crown to the sacrificial action.

Thirdly, aside from any comparison or figure whatever, the Fathers sometimes dwell on the intimate connection existing between Christ's Resurrection and His sacrifice, in that, He thereby added a certain perfection of immolational dignity to His victim state.

Thus Origen: "It was necessary for my Lord and Saviour not only to be born among men, but also to descend into hell, so that, returning thence, His work accomplished, He might ascend to the Father, and be more fully purified at the heavenly altar there, in order to bestow on the pledge of our flesh which He bore with Him, the gift of eternal purity. This then is the true day of propitiation, when God has been propitiated for men" (In Levit., hom. 9, n. 5. P.G. 12, 514). The purity referred to here is the purity of the Flesh of Christ divested of every similitude of sin, passing into incorruptibility and immortality. This attainment of the divine condition was the ultimate and consummate sanctification of the Victim.

St. John Damascene (In dominicum pascha, P.G. 96, 841) speaks in a similar fashion: "My Saviour, Living and now Deathless Victim, while thou didst freely offer thyself to God the Father, rising from the sepulchre, thou didst raise up our common Father Adam."

Here again the passage from St. Augustine already cited, is relevant: "He received from you what He would offer for you, even as a priest receives from you what He is to offer for you, when you are desirous of appeasing the anger of God on account of your sins. That was when it was done, that was how it was done. Our Priest received from us what He was to offer for us: for He took flesh from us, in that flesh He was made Victim, He was made a holocaust, He was made a sacrifice. He was made a Sacrifice in the Passion: that which was slain He restored anew in the Resurrection, and gave it to God as your first fruits; and He says—all that is yours has been consecrated to God since such first fruits of you have been given to God." (In Psalm 129, n. 7. P.L. 37, 1701.) And further: "This then is the evening sacrifice, the Passion of the Lord, the Cross of the Lord, the offering of the saving Victim, the holocaust accepted by God. In the Resurrection He made this Evening Sacrifice a Morning Gift." (In Psalm. 140, n. 5. P.L. 37, 1818).—that is to say, a gift transformed and beautified by the light of eternal glory. Such was the gift, such the Victim that Christ made over to God,

The words of St. Zeno of Verona express this truth most effectively: "He is eternal, because He was slain and yet He lives. He, I say, is the Perfect Lamb, because in Him the great High Priest, included in His Victim by a mystery of love, today (i. e. the day of the Resurrection) made divine the Man whom He offered in Sacrifice. (Tract. 55. P.L. II, 511). The meaning is plain: today is transmitted to the Father in a divine condition, what was dedicated to the Father in a human condition.

The Priesthood Ratified by God in the Resurrection.

Still further light is shed on our theme from the common teaching of the Fathers: that the priesthood of Christ was made manifest most of all in the Resurrection.[252] This of course does not imply that He was not Priest before the Resurrection, for, as we have said above, He was Priest from the Incarnation, and He exercised this priesthood in the offering of His Body and Blood. Our meaning is that the priesthood which He claimed for Himself in that offering, was now sealed by God as true and efficacious, not fictitious or unavailing, in the Resurrection itself. So much so that by the Resurrection Christ was glorified as Priest. His priesthood was confirmed and so to speak sealed with authority: He did not glorify himself that He might be made a high priest, but He was glorified by Him who said to Him: Thou art my Son, this day have I begotten thee (by raising Him from the dead, see Acts XIII. 33, and commentators in h.l. of the Epistle to the Hebrews passim) .... and being consummated, became to all that obey Him, the cause of eternal salvation, called by God a high priest according to the order of Melchisedech (Hebr., V. 5-10).[253]

And in the first place, this glorious dedication of the priesthood is stated by the Fathers. Athanasius says that Christ was made Pontiff of our confession "when having offered Himself for us, He raised His Body from the grave" (Or. 2 contra Arianos n. 7. P.G. 26, 161).[254] Cyril of Alexandria thinks that both the time of the Resurrection and the time of the priesthood of the Lord are prefigured by that eighth day on which Aaron, succeeding to Moses, fulfilled the office of the priesthood (Levit., IX) : "For the time of the priesthood of Christ is fittingly understood as that which was after the Law (i. e. of Moses), that is the eighth day, the day of the Resurrection" (De ador. in sp. et ver., 1, 11. P.G. 68, 768).[255] Procopius on the same words of Leviticus: "The new priesthood of Christ began on the eighth day on which Christ rose from the dead." (P.G. 87, 719).

Among the Latin Fathers, Tertullian says that Christ (like Jesus the son of Josedech, Zach., III. 3-5) was not clothed with the sacerdotal vestments until the Resurrection: "Clothed in the vesture of a priest after His Resurrection, He is called a Priest forever of God the Father." (Adv. Judaeos, 14. P.L. 2, 640; compare Lactantius Divin. Instit., 1, 4, c. 14. P.L. 6, 488-490).

The Resurrection may be said to initiate the priesthood in the same sense in which it perfects the sacrifice. For the priesthood is true and absolutely perfect only when it has been marked as ratified by God; and it is ratified by God when the sacrifice is accepted by God. For the priest or pontiff as mediator between God and man, endeavours to transmit to God certain tokens of human devotion, so that when these tokens have become divine, man in turn may be rewarded by these same tokens now pledged by God. That priest then is perfect, not void and ineffectual, whose gifts really do pass over to God, really received into the divine ownership. If on the other hand God rejected and refused to make His own these gifts, both the sacrifice and the priesthood would be vain and empty. Now in the Resurrection, Christ's Victim has passed over to God; Christ's Victim is received by God; Christ's Victim, food of God so to speak, is absorbed in the uncreated fire of the divine glory, in a manner far exceeding in excellence the figurative victims which were consumed by fire sent down from heaven or by the flames of the holocaust.[256] For the consummation of the victim is the acceptance by God. The acceptance in the consumption of the victim by earthly fire was figurative only. Whereas the glorification of Christ was true acceptance. Hence the Fathers termed this glorification a holocaust, as though that glory by which He was glorified was a fire which completely devoured the victim and, consuming its corruptibility, translated it into its own incorruptibility.

Thus Origen referring the law of the holocausts (Levit., I. 1-9) to Christ, thus interprets the words: And when they have flayed the victim .... the sons of Aaron the priest shall put fire on the altar, and they shall pile the wood on the fire "For the divinity of Christ is from heaven, whither too that fire hastens upwards. It was fitting therefore for a fire from heaven to consume all that had been done by the Saviour in the Body, and to restore all to His divine nature. That fire is kindled under the wood: and the Passion of Christ in the flesh was even unto the wood; but when He was suspended on the wood of the Cross, the dispensation of the flesh came to an end; because rising from the dead He ascended into heaven, whither the fire by its nature pointed the way. Hence too the Apostle said: although we knew Christ according to the flesh, but now we do not know Him. For the holocaust of His Flesh, offered through the wood of the Cross, joined the earthly to the heavenly, the human to the divine." (In Levit. hom. I, n. 4. P.G., 12410).

Cyril of Alexandria (l. c.) gives the same reason why the beginnings of the priesthood of the Lord were most manifest in the Resurrection; in the same way as a fire coming out from the Lord while it devoured the sacrifice of Aaron (the ox, the ram, flour), sanctioned and approved the priesthood of Aaron: " .... Moses declared that the glory of the Lord would be seen on the eighth day (for the Law foretold the time of the coming of the Saviour) : And the glory of the Lord appeared to all the multitude: and behold a fire coming out from the Lord devoured the holocaust, and the fat which was upon the altar (Levit. IX. 23-24) .... Hence the glory of the Lord was in very truth seen on the eighth day, that is to say: the Son who is the glory of God, was made manifest .... He makes us sacred, when in type He is slain in the ox, or as the ram when He was consummated in the odor of spiritual sweetness;[257] He Himself being made Victim of salvation, sanctified us with His own Blood, and as the flour tempered with oil, He presents Himself to God the Father for us in the gladness of a holy life."

Procopius similarly compares the Resurrection of the immolated Christ to the holocaust. He is commenting on the rite (Exodus XXIX. 12-14) in which a calf was sacrificed to God at the consecration of the priests; just as the slaying of the calf prefigured the death of Christ, so the burning of the victim prefigured the Resurrection: "The wondrous resplendent glory of the death of the Lord, is indicated by the fire which consumes the sacrifices. The same fire is a figure of the divinity of Christ, as we also see in the burning bush and in Mount Sinai. Christ dying is raised to ineffable glory, because He endured death; for by the glory of the Resurrection He vanquished the ignominy of the Passion. The corpse of the calf consumed by the fire is a foreshadowing of this." (Commentarii in Exod., P.G. 87, 657658).[258] The fire of the divinity comes down, so to speak, on the Body of the immolated Christ, devouring its mortality: such was the glory of the sacrifice of the Lord, to be caught up by the divinity and raised to the sublimity of a heavenly condition.[259]

This also we find indicated in St. Augustine. Thomassinus (op. cit., 1, 10, C. IS. parag. I-5) has culled a number of beautiful passages, in which Augustine represents the resurrection of our bodies after the manner of a fire burning away and eternally consuming our mortality. We shall all pass in holocaust through its flame, borne on to that place where Christ, bearing the first fruits of the Virgin womb, has gone before us (Ennar. in Psalm 64, n. 4 and 5. P.L. 36, 775-776). And thus will come to pass that which is written: death is swallowed in victory: for "victory is as a divine fire; when it swallows up our death it is a holocaust .... Everything in mortal life will be consumed, in order that eternal life may be consummated. All these therefore will be holocausts". Of such the Psalmist says: I will go into thy house with holocausts (Ennar. in Psalm 65, n. 18. P.L. 36, 798). For then indeed "the substance of the body will be changed into a heavenly quality; the fire in the sacrifice signified this, as it were swallowing up death in victory. " In this figure of the legal sacrifices Christ was promised (Contra Faust. Manich, 1. 22, n. 17. P.L. 42, 409) : the most true sacrifice,[260] truly consummated in the Resurrection.[261]

On the following verse from Leviticus VI. 30: For the victim that is slain f or sin, the blood of which is carried into the sanctuary, shall not be eaten, but shall be burnt with fire: Rupert of Dietz, making a careful distinction between the sacramental species in which Christ is eaten, and His proper species in which He suffered and rose from the dead but is not eaten, writes: "The visible corporal species in which the Son of God, the Victim of the living, was slain for our sins, whose Blood, nay the Flesh of whose Blood, was once borne into the Holy of Holies in heaven, as ransom and propitiation for the sins of the people, that same species, despised in death was not to be eaten, but was to be burnt in the fire (that is, in the fire of the Holy Spirit), was to be freed by virtue of the resurrection from every corruption of mortality and passibility, and was to be raised up in heaven." (In Levit, 1. I, C. 34. P.L. 167, 780).[262] Such is the teaching of the Fathers on the divine consummation of the sacrifice of our Lord.

In the second place, the efficacy of the priesthood of Christ in glory is indicated by the Resurrection.

Because the sacrifice of Christ was consummated by the divinity it is efficacious. This consummation is in the Resurrection. For in the Resurrection our Priest obtained for Himself personally, and for us as Head of the body of which we are the members, the goods of heaven, and the winning of celestial goods was the purpose of the sacrifice. Hence the priesthood of Christ is ratified by reason of its effect, or its fruit, and so rightly and justly, excelling the feeble priesthood of the Law, He is called the high priest of good things to come. It is scarcely worth while to quote the Fathers on this matter; later however it will claim a fuller explanation.

(b) The Sacrifice And The Ascension

Benedict XIV (De sacros. sacrific. missae, 1. 2, C. II, n. 5, Op. omn., Prati, 1842, t. 8, p. 71) writes: "In the Jewish sacrifices the victim was burnt an the altar of the holocausts, in order that any uncleanness therein might be consumed by the flames, and that the smoke might be wafted up to heaven in the odor of sweetness, as Holy Scripture says. In the New Law the Victim was consumed by the Resurrection and Ascension of Christ. For by the Resurrection that which was mortal in Christ was swallowed up by life, as the Apostle says (11. Cor., V. 4), and what was corruptible in Him was consumed; in the Ascension the Victim was accepted by God in the odor of sweetness, and was placed at His right hand."

Just as the Resurrection therefore was likened to the fire of the holocaust, so was the Ascension to the sweet odor of the smoke issuing from the holocaust. For this reason the Fathers interwove both in the sacrifice of Christ. In the Resurrection they see a descent of God on the Victim, in the Ascension the raising of the Victim to God.[263] They considered that then the Victim was accepted and taken into the bosom of God, when the cycle of Christ entering the world as Priest, returning to the Father as Victim-was completed. With God the sacrifice and the Priesthood of Christ would find rest, having reached their goal: the Victim now changeless remains in the sight of God, the Priest is seated eternally at His right hand. There whither the virtue of His sacrifice has brought Him, He is in the enjoyment of His sacerdotal glory.

Epiphanius says that it was because of His Ascension that He was made Pontiff or Priest forever: "As made a priest in His own Body, He offered Himself to the Father for men, fulfilling the priestly office. But ascending glorious and spiritual in the same Body, He sits at the right hand of the Father, made priest forever, having passed into heaven" (Adv. Haeres., haer. 69, parag. 34. P.G. 42, 261).

We have this also in the hymns of St. Ephraem, extolling Christ for having ascended as an oblation, because He ascended and offered: that is, bringing gifts to God, which were first offered on earth by Himself: The new Mystic Bread ascended into heaven on that day. The mysteries were unfolded in thy Body which ascended as an Offering. Blessed, O Lord, be thy bread![264] He comes to us the Lamb of the house of David, Priest sprung from Abraham; the same one is our Lamb and our Priest; His Body is the Victim, His Blood the libation. Blessed be His sacrifice! From heaven He descended as light, from Mary as offspring; He came down from the Cross as fruit; He ascended into heaven as the first fruits. Blessed be His will! .... Thou art an offering both in heaven and on earth, for thou wast slain, and thou wast adored; for thou didst come down to earth and wast made a Victim; Thou didst go up to heaven and thou wast made the Great Offering; Thou didst ascend, O Lord, and thou didst offer. (Hymni dispersi, hymn 18, in Ascensionem—from the Syrian breviary of the feast of the Ascension—str. 8, 9, 10, 12. ed. Lamy, t. 4, p. 748-750).

Chrysostom rejoices because our Redeemer "ascends with a sacrifice which can appease the Father" (In Hebr., IX. 24, hom 17, n. 1. P.G. 63, 128). Hesychius (In Levit., XVI. 16-18 P.G. 93, 901) says that we eat the victim of the Lord in a holy place (the Church) because the Lord brought the blood of His victim into the holy place, that is into heaven, and offered it to God: "He offered the blood of His own oblation, which was offered in place of our blood, in the Holies (that is in heaven itself), in the sight of His Father. He also commanded this sacrifice to be eaten in the holy place (we call it the Church) unto the remission and the atonement of sins." In the same way the author of the Historia ecclesiasticae et mysticae contemplationis (even before the time of Anastasius bibliothecarius, attributed by some to St. Basil, and to St. Germanus of Constantinople with greater probability: compare Brightman J. T. S., p. 248-267 and 387-398 and F. Gayre, D. T. C., art. Germain, col. 1308) interwove the offering of Christ and the Ascension: "The Son of God raised up by the Flesh which He assumed, and the Lamb which He bore on His shoulders .... beyond every principality and power, and above the domination of the heavenly virtues, and presented it to God the Father .... Because of the dignity of the offerer and the purity of the oblation, God the Father accepted it as a pleasing sacrifice and oblation on behalf of the human race. The Father also said to the Son: The Lord said to my Lord: Sit thou at my right hand and He sits at the right hand of the seat of majesty in heaven; this is Jesus of Nazareth, pontiff of future goods" (Brightman, loc. cit., p. 394).[265] And again: "Christ entered into the Holies not made with hands, and appeared in the presence of God the Father, made High Priest for us He entered into heaven. He is also our advocate with the Father and a propitiation for our sins, having prepared His holy Body and precious Blood for us, as redemption for us all" (Ibid., p. 394).

From the Latin Fathers, we quote first Phoebadius. If He wrote the work De fide orthodoxa contra Arianos,[266] He says: "We believe that the Son of God died and was buried .... : that on the third day He rose again .... that He ascended into heaven, that He offered that Man (the assumed humanity) to His Father, a most pleasing gift", (P.L. 20, 48).

In complete harmony we have St. Augustine: "Once therefore in all time, the Lord Jesus Christ our one High Priest, rising from the dead, entered, not into the figurative but into the true Holy of Holies beyond the veils of heaven, offering Himself for us. (Fragmentum Sermonis de kalendis januariis, inter collectanea Joannis Diaconis in Lev., P.L. 38, 1736).

Here we may also record the words of a discourse of Gregory the Great, written out by the abbot Claudius. Gregory pays a tribute to His acumen, He says that Claudius changed the sense of His words into something "far more useful" (valde in utilius permutatum) (Epist. l, 12, ep. 24, P.L. 77, 12344) [267] Gregory's words on 1. Kings, I. 21-22 as narrated by Claudius, are as follows: "Our Redeemer now triumphing over death, now rising above the darkness of our mortality .... took up to heaven the flesh which He assumed for our salvation .... He immolated a great Victim at the moment when He presented Himself to the eternal Father in heaven in the very substance of His glorified Flesh" (1. Kings, 1. 1, c. I, n. 40. P.L. 79, 42).

In the Middle Ages Richardus Weddinghusanus[268] in His Libellus de canone mystici libaminis, c. 6. P.L. 177, 463, a well known work at that time, comments on the words a pure victim, a holy victim, an immaculate victim: "The Lord Jesus Christ was a pure Victim in His Passion, a Holy Victim in the Resurrection, an Immaculate Victim in the Ascension.[269]

Hence it is quite in keeping with the teaching of the early Fathers, that among recent writers, two men of deep piety, C. de Condren,[270] and J. J. Olier,[271] speak of the taking up of the Victim to God in the Ascension, and the consuming of the Victim already spoken of in the Resurrection, as God's communion in the sacrifice of Christ. Without such communion by God, we, when we feed on the Victim, would not really be fellow-guests and table companions with God.[272] So that just as the Passion has an intimate relation to our spiritual nutriment, so also have the Resurrection and the Ascension.

Whether then we consider the communion of God with Christ Victim, or the partaking of Christ (already spoken of) [273] in the goods of God, under either aspect both the Resurrection and the Ascension confer on the sacrifice of Christ an excellence beyond the other sacrifices. Owing to the imperfection of these sacrifices, they were incapable of leading the offerer into the fellowship of God, and were powerless to change the offering into the food and banquet of God. Hence the signification of those other sacrifices was false, and their promise deceitful, unless they were referred to the one true sacrifice, which being offered on earth was consummated in heaven, and being rendered to God in the Passion, was crowned with glory. The sacrifice of Christ was truer than those other sacrifices in so far as it really passed into the celestial condition, and the Victim was truer, crowned with glory beyond all other victims. For the purpose of every victim was that it might pass over to God. This was achieved by our paschal Victim alone, for His passing over to God from life through death, from death through the Resurrection, was perfected in the Ascension. Hence from every point of view, the Resurrection and the Ascension added the crowning perfection to the sacrifice of Christ.

No wonder then that in practically all the liturgies, (see later, Bk. II) after the Supper narrative and the commemoration of the Passion, we find a commemoration or anamnesis either of the Resurrection or of the Ascension or of both.[274] For all these mysteries are integral parts of the one mystery, which is the sacrifice of the Redemption offered by Christ and accepted by God.

And again no wonder that just as the Eucharist is the sacrament of the Passion of Christ, so also it is called the commemorative sacrament of the Resurrection of the Lord. And this is so because, although it does not sensibly represent the Resurrection as it does the Passion, it is undoubtedly the commemoration of a sacrifice which is true and not merely tentative, ratified and not void, consummated and not imperfect, celestial and not a faint resemblance of what is heavenly. For just as in the Supper the sacrament not only foretold the Passion but also the Resurrection and the Ascension, so He who offered the sacrifice, being God, was truly believed to have offered Himself through the eternal Spirit, as spotless to God; so that the divine acceptance of Christ Victim was assured, invisibly indeed but nevertheless infallibly. In the certainty of this consummation both Christ and the apostles [275] ate and drank—the apostles in the light of faith, Christ in the clearness of vision. Hence in the Supper itself the future eating and drinking of the Lord in the kingdom of God was mentioned by our Lord (Matth. XXVI. 29, Mark XIV. 25, Luke XXII. 29-30), and at the Supper too Christ prayed that we should be glorified in heaven (John XVII. and 5).

The Eternity of the Sacrifice

The sacrifice of Christ was made glorious by the Resurrection, heavenly by the Ascension;[276] by the immortality of His eternal life it was made perpetual. We have seen that the victimal condition induced by the sacrificial action lasts as long as the victim remains incorrupt. Not only did the Resurrection leave the victimal sanctification of the Flesh of Christ incorrupt and inviolate (Psalm XV. 9-10: My flesh shall rest in hope. Because thou wilt not leave my soul in hell: nor suffer Thy Holy One to see corruption; compare Acts II. 26-31); but it also clothed the Flesh of the victim with the incorruptibility of glory, which so far from lessening the victimal condition, rather brings it to the apex of perfection, the divine acceptance confirming and completing the sanctity of the Victim. The sacrifice of Christ is immortal, therefore, for the same reason that it is glorious and heavenly.[277]

The sacrifice of Christ therefore continues: not of course the active sacrifice, for the sacrificial action has passed, it is not repeated, nor is it in continual process of completion (in fieri); the passive sacrifice however remains, for the Victim remains in its state of being (esse) as accepted Victim.

Nor is this passive sacrifice in heaven merely a sacrifice in the metaphorical sense, implying only an interior affection of Christ, as we are said metaphorically to be immolated to God by. devotion. It is a sacrifice in the strict sense, it connotes a distinct outward condition of the humanity of our Lord, namely the glory procured by the sacrifice once and for all time offered by Christ at the Supper and in the Passion, and ratified and sanctioned forever by the Father: in the same way as the ancients called anything duly dedicated to God a sacrifice, as long as the full condition of such dedication persisted.

Furthermore, although it is in the proper sense a celestial sacrifice, still it must not be ranked among mere signs or symbols, representing something else. For all such limitations or figures of the truth are foreign to the kingdom of heaven, as in heaven all is truth resplendent in its own light. For in heaven the sacrifice signifies the devotion of the sacrificer, but in such a way that what signifies and what is signified—that is the sign and the thing signified by the sign—are one and the same thing. The reason is that Christ was at one time Priest and Victim, offering to God nothing other than His own self. Hence His was a full sacrifice in which the sign was equated with the thing signified. Not only is this so now in heaven, but it is manifest that it is so. Hence Guitmund of Aversa, speaking of the celestial and glorious Christ in His famous treatise against Berengarius, says well: "The same Christ therefore is the sacred sign of Himself, that is the sacrament of Himself", (De corporis et sanguinis Christi veritate, 1. 2, P.L. 149, 1460), though now in heaven without any sacramental veils whatever, Hence flows the efficacy of that sacrifice to sanctify us, not merely in image but in reality, through the sacraments whereby it applies its virtue to us. For these sacraments are not vain empty signs, but as signs of a full sacrifice and instruments of an all-sufficient Victim, they exert an efficacy which in no way falls short of what they signify.[278]

We come to the Fathers. Athanasius says that the priestly ministry of Christ is "faithful" because of the eternity of the sacrifice: "He assumed flesh like ours, Himself offering this flesh, He was called Pontiff, and He was made faithful and merciful; merciful, because when He offered Himself for us, He had mercy on us; faithful .... Because He offers a faithful sacrifice, enduring not ceasing. For nothing was faithful in the legal sacrifices, they came and passed day by day, so that a new cleansing was necessary. But the Sacrifice of our Saviour once offered accomplished all things, it was made faithful in that it endures forever. (Or. 2, contra Arianos, 9. P.G. 26, 265).

St. Gregory Nazianzen points out that God in a manner engrafted the eternal Victim on the weak sacrifices of the Law: "Indeed God did not leave the ancient sacrifices entirely devoid of sanctity, or useless, or merely dripping with the blood of animals; that great Victim who in His divine nature could not be immolated, was mingled, so to speak, with the legal sacrifices: that Victim, not the Victim of a small part of the world, not a transient victim, but the eternal expiation of the whole world. (Or. 45, in S. Pascha, n. 13. P.G. 36, 640).

Epiphanius states plainly the eternal character of Christ Victim: "He offers a sacerdotal gift to His Father, having taken His share of the flesh of human nature, so as to be a priest for us according to the order of Melchisedech who had had no successor. For He remains ever offering gifts for us who first offered Himself in order to abrogate the victims of the Old Testament, is now offering gifts for us, having sacrificed a more perfect living victim for the whole world: He is Himself the Victim, the Sacrifice, the Priest, the Altar, and God .... in order to give us the fulness of life, and establish His priesthood immutable forever." (Haeres., 55, n. 4. P.G. 41, 980).

Chrysostom has a passage which at first sight seems to say that Christ in heaven has neither sacerdotal office nor sacrificial character: "When you hear Him called priest, you must not infer that He is eternally offering sacrifice. He offered once, now He is seated .... You must not conclude that He stands at the altar and is liturgus in heaven. Just as He was a servant, He was a priest and liturgus; but just as He became but did not remain a servant, so He became but did not remain a liturgus. For a liturgus is not seated, He stands at the altar." (In Hebr., hom. 13, n. 3. P.G. 63, 107.) But the holy Doctor only means this: that now there is no need for Christ to offer any new sacrifice, as if such sacrifice were still needed. That the sacrifice once offered and presented in God's sight is to remain eternally there, He does not at all deny.[279] This is clear from the words that follow as well as from the words that come before the quotation. For the holy Doctor immediately subjoins: "Hence we may estimate the grandeur of that sacrifice, because though only one it was sufficient, and though offered once only, it had efficacy far beyond all the other sacrifices taken together. There is no other sacrifice, the one alone has cleansed us. After that, fire and hell. It is for this reason that the Apostle stresses it over and over again, saying, one priest, one sacrifice, lest one might think that there were many sacrifices (yet to be celebrated) and recklessly sin." (ibid.) The sacrifice is one therefore, because it is all-sufficient, but Chrysostom had said already that this one all-sufficing sacrifice for us was now maintained in heaven: "For behold in heaven we have a priest, in heaven we have a victim, in heaven we have a sacrifice" (In Hebr., hom. 13, n. 3. P.G. 41, 980). Indeed He says that the priesthood of Christ would not be perfect without the heavenly sacrifice. For, says the Apostle, every priest is appointed to offer gifts and sacrifices, wherefore it is necessary that He should have something to offer. When it is said that He is seated, you must not think that still to call Him pontiff is without meaning .... The question has been asked: Why is He said to have died because He is a priest? Since there is no priest without sacrifice, therefore He too must have a sacrifice. But on the other hand, although the Apostle has said He is in heaven, He says also that He is priest, and proves this from the following considerations: from Melchisedech, from the oath, from the fact that He offers sacrifice. Then the Apostle argues: If He were on earth, He would not be a priest, etc. If then He is a priest, as undoubtedly He is, we must not seek Him on earth but in some other place. It is in this way that the Apostle shows that He could not be a priest on earth. Why? Because on earth, He says, there is no resurrection. (In Hebr., hom. 14, n. 1, col. III.) He is a perfect priest then in that place where He is in the glory of the newness of life. But He is not a priest in heaven in a merely fictitious sense; therefore He must have His sacrifice with Him. Consequently when the Apostle says Let us draw near in the fullness of faith with a true heart (Hebr., X. 22), according to Chrysostom He says this because the Victim offered by the eternal priest on the heavenly altar is invisible: "In the fulness of faith: that is because there is nothing visible, not priest, not sacrifice, not altar" (In Hebr., hom. 19, n. I. P.G. 63, 139). Thus Chrysostom.

The divergence then between Chrysostom and Cyril of Alexandria is merely verbal, when Cyril says that Christ in heaven is priest, hierurgus, liturgus: "He who offers sacrifice to God is not in equal honour with God, and does not obtain for himself the honour due to God only. How is it then that Christ, made our High Priest, is seated at the right hand of God? That He occupies the throne of Majesty in heaven? That He is the liturgus of the saints .... ? The reason is, that Christ and the Son of God are one; He is seated on the throne of the divinity because of His divine nature, but by dispensation in the economy of His human nature, He is priest and liturgus" (De fide recta ad principissas, P.G. 75, I 397). We have the same question in another place: "If it be true that the priest always stands when offering sacrifice, and is never seated with God to whom He offers sacrifice, and that He is not of like glory, assuredly Christ is a hierurgus of a unique kind, as God He is seated with the divinity, but in His humanity He offers sacrifice" (De recta fide ad augustas, 44. P.G. 76, 1397). In the Middle Ages we have Simeon of Thessalonia, a worthy exponent of Eastern tradition, who explains the priesthood of Christ under two heads: first, because He offers the sacrifice through us in the Eucharist, and secondly, because in Himself He is the eternal Victim of the sacrifice offered on the Cross. His words are: "He is a priest forever according to the order of Melchisedech (namely in bread and wine), never ceasing [to offer through us in the Mass]. But still more He is eternal priest, because He voluntarily sacrificed and sacrifices Himself through the Cross, and He offered and offers Himself to the Father, and is the Everlasting Victim of propitiation for us. We have in Him too a high priest who penetrated the heavens, Jesus the Son of God." (De sacramentis, cap. 44. P.G. 155, 189). Again "....[After the last judgement] there will be oneness of mind, all will be friends, and all will be beloved; and Jesus the Great Victim will be in the midst of all His saints, the peace and the unity of all, Priest and Victim uniting all and united to all" (De sacra liturgia, c. 98. P.G. 155, 296).

The Latin Fathers agree: St. Ambrose proves that Christ is our eternal Victim in heaven:

"For the priest must have something to offer, and according to the Law He must enter into the holies, not without blood. Therefore because God rejected the blood of calves and goats it was necessary for this priest, as you have read, penetrating the highest heavens, to enter into the Holy of Holies by His own Blood, in order to become an Eternal Offering for our sins. As it is with the Priest so it is with the Victim." (De fide, 1. 3, c. II, n. 87. P.L. 16, 607).

Gregory the Great commenting on Job, I. 5, So did Job all His days: "Job did not cease to offer sacrifice all days; because the Redeemer offers without ceasing a holocaust for us, He unceasingly presents Incarnation [i. e. His assumed flesh] to the Father for us. For His Incarnation [i. e. His assumed flesh] is truly the offering of our cleansing, and seeing that He presents Himself as Man, His presence wipes out the sins of man. And in the mystery of His humanity He immolates an eternal sacrifice, because the things that He cleanses are eternal (Moral., 1. I, C. 24, n. 32. P.L. 75, 542).

Gerhoh of Reichersberg in the Middle Ages has the quaint notion that the eternity of the sacrifice of the Lord is denoted in the psalms by the interposition of the word Sela. Thus on Psalm XIX. 4: May He be mindful of all thy sacrifices and may thy whole burnt-offering be made fat (after this verse in the Hebrew comes Sela. This word is often rendered in the Targums to mean "forever") : "This word often inserted in the Psalms signifies eternity .... here its position is appropriate as joined to the holocaust that would burn forever, because its Priest offers it according to the order of Melchisedech, who has not a temporal priesthood like Aaron, but an eternal priesthood like Melchisedech. Hence He is forever able to save men, approaching Himself to God, and always living to make intercession for His own, namely offering the Man assumed for our salvation, as a holocaust burnt wholly with the fire of the divinity; this holocaust is always fat in the sight of God the Father. And thou, O Christ, great Priest, wast made peacemaker in the time of anger, when in the day of tribulation thou didst offer sacrifice and holocaust, concerning which with thy divine assistance, we have already spoken." (In Psalm XIX. P.L., 967).[280]

Further testimony will be dealt with later, when we treat of the Mass and its connection with the celestial Victim.[281]

(c) Theological Proof.

We advance two arguments from theology to show the eternity of the sacrifice of Christ in heaven: one based on our justification, the other on the sacrifice of the Mass.

(a) Our Justification Is A Proof Of the Eternity Of The Sacrifice of Christ.

In a striking passage in the Epistle to the Romans, St. Paul says that Christ was delivered up for our sins, and that He rose again for our justification.[282] The Apostle says plainly here that the cause of our justification is the Resurrection of Christ.[283] He further says in the Epist. 1. to the Corinthians (XV. 17) : If Christ be not risen from the dead, your faith is vain (for) you are still in your sins. The meaning of this particular verse of the Epistle is not (like verses 14 and 15) : you are still in your sins, because your faith is vain in the sense of false (as having no foundation) : but, your faith is vain, in the sense of useless and ineffective, because having no one to justify you, you are still in your sins.[284] You are sinners because you have not obtained justification, the sole cause of which would be the resurrection of Christ, who suffered and rose from the dead: remove the cause and you remove the effect; it is of course quite true that we have been saved by the sacrifice of Christ, but this is on the condition that the victim of the sacrifice is the principle of justification for us, in as much as the victim has secured the resurrection to glory.

The Victim of the sacrifice risen to glory from the dead is the source of our justification in two ways. First, He is the principle of our justification by the removal of a hindrance to that justification, because as propitiatory victim, He is the price paid for our debts. Secondly, He is the principle of our justification as efficient cause, for by reason of His sanctifying influence, He communicates to us His own sanctity and grace.

In the first place, considering this victim under the aspect of propitiation.[285] Christ offered to God a gift or a victim in propitiation for our sins: His Body stained with the blood of the Passion unto death.

Hence He gave His own Body to God, so that it should become God's thing. Hence at that time Christ entered into a contract. God on His part sanctioned this contract by accepting the victim and taking it to Himself in the abode of His glory.

True, in so far as acceptance is an act formally immanent to God, it is eternal; and hence it was not deferred until the Resurrection. But we are considering here the acceptance in so far as it virtually passes into the thing actually taken up and laid hold of by God. We are dealing with a sacrificial contract and must consider the matter in this way, because it is in the nature of a symbol or sign. Without this divine subscription and ratification of the contract, the sacrifice would secure no propitiation whatever; because no matter how great the compensation offered, were it even condign, until the consent of each party is expressed no contract would result. Christ Victim therefore will not free us from our sins unless God accepts His Victim in payment for our debts. Christ was of sufficient worth to compensate, even before the divine acceptance, but it was only when acceptance had place that He actively and effectively did compensate. Therefore although the work of Christ Himself as Redeemer was completed by His death, still we were indebted to God; and the Resurrection was a necessary addition as a recognition of God's acceptance of Christ Victim as the price of our salvation. There at lag the contract stood completed. But by the contract we were saved. Therefore before Christ's Resurrection our salvation was not constituted.

Furthermore the price of our salvation must necessarily remain eternally with God. For Christ gave Himself to God forever, in order to be forever a propitiation for us.[286] Now what is given into God's keeping He never alienates or destroys, He keeps it forever just as it is in itself. Hence were Christ at any time (I speak as one less wise) to cease to be in the glory of God, this could only be, were He to withdraw Himself from God; thus He would break the contract and defraud God of what was pledged to Him, and so our sins would remain unatoned for, in the failure of the compensation which the gift presented, for that compensates only so long as it remains as a gift, if withdrawn it has no grace.[287] But our High Priest is faithful, our Victim is faithful, our price is faithful, God will never be defrauded of it, and thus we are secure in the eternal redemption found by Christ.

This is what the Fathers meant when speaking of the price paid by Christ. Once paid, it forever redeemed us in the sight of God; so much so that were it (on an impossible supposition) to disappear from the sight of God, we would not be saved from our sins; failing the victim, the price would be lacking. George Witzel, an acute interpreter of sacred antiquity, used this argument very effectively against Luther: "If therefore the Body and Blood of Christ IS not a Victim, our faith is vain and we are still in our sins" (De Eucharistia, Cologne, 1549, p. 322-323).[288] This is said of the propitiation for us, in which the Victim stands as moral cause.

In the second place, consider the Victim as the efficient cause of our justification, and it is clear that the process of our justification requires the eternity of the sacrifice. For we are sanctified by partaking of the Victim of the Passion which makes us sharers in its sanctity, in so far as, itself all full of truth, it operates in us what it signifies. But if a victim now exists no longer, there is no longer any influxus of the victim and hence no influxus of the sanctity. For our Victim is not only the cause of the imparting of grace to us, but of the maintaining of it. If this cause ceases its active influence, the effect will also cease to be maintained and to exist. But the life of Christ in glory is the source and the fountain of our own spiritual life of grace and glory. Thus St. Paul says we are quickened according to grace by God with Christ raised from the dead unto glory (Coloss., II. 13; Ephes., II. 5-6). For we are quickened or vivified by the Flesh of the eternal sacrifice giving us spiritual life.[289]

St. Thomas (3 S. 62, 5 and 6) is in close agreement: in the order of efficiency the sacraments are compared as instruments to the Passion of Christ, whence they derive their virtue, just as the Passion itself is by way of instrument in respect of the divinity, which is the principal cause (art. 5); and thus previous to the Passion sacramental efficacy was impossible: because "what is not yet in existence does not cause any movement or change" (Art. 6). According to St. Thomas therefore, the Passion "by which Christ initiated the Christian religion, offering himself as an oblation and a victim to God, as St. Paul. Ephes., V says", (art. 5), intervenes by way of cause as movens motum, between the divine efficacy and the sacraments of the New Law. But what is not actually existing cannot put forth any action, or efficiently produce any change or motion. Therefore Christ's sacrifice must continue, as it does by the continuance of Christ Victim of His Passion. Hence St. Thomas already had said opportunely: "the resurrection of Christ has by way of instrument (under God the principal cause), effective power, not only in respect of the resurrection of bodies, but also in respect of the resurrection of souls" (3 S. 56, 2). And again: "Divine justice in itself was not bound to cause our resurrection through the Resurrection of Christ; for God could free us otherwise than by the Passion and Resurrection of Christ. Nevertheless because He decreed to free us in this manner, clearly the Resurrection of Christ is the cause of our own resurrection" (In 3 S. 56, I, 2m).[290]

If Christ therefore did not rise from the dead we are in our sins, lacking both ransom before God and the begetter of divine grace in us. But if Christ did rise again, in the first place, the price paid to God and eternally accepted in the past, that is, the sacrifice enacted by Christ on earth, and received by the Father into the glory of heaven, eternally remains and is our eternal propitiation; and secondly, the Victim is always at hand, by feeding on which we are always sanctified. St. Paul suggests the benefit of the Resurrection under each of these aspects in Coloss. II. 12-14 In whom (Christ) you are risen again by the faith of the operation of God, and you when you were dead in your sins, and the incircumcision of your flesh, He (God) hath quickened together with Him. Here we have the benefit of the Resurrection as establishing a oneness of life between Christ in glory and ourselves made acceptable and destined for glory. The Apostle continues: forgiving you all your offences; blotting out the handwriting of the decree [291] that was against us, which is contrary to us.[292] And here then is the second benefit of the Resurrection: Christ welcomed into the bosom of the Father, or the acceptance of the compensation offered on the Cross, and the blotting-out of the handwriting whereby we were indebted to God. For in the Resurrection God destroyed the bond of our indebtedness, and thereby pardoned our sins: namely when the Victim of the Cross was accepted by God for our Redemption.

(b) The Sacrifice Of The Mass Is A proof Of The Eternity Of The sacrifice Of Christ.

Another argument for the eternity of the sacrifice of our Lord is drawn from our sacrifice of the Mass. Our Mass is a true sacrifice just in so far as Christ is truly a Victim in the Mass: for where there is no victim except in mere outward appearance, there is no sacrifice except in mere outward appearance: because sacrifice is the offering of a victim. On the other hand Christ is not made a victim by us in the Mass. This is clear from several considerations. In the first place Christ suffers no change whatever in the Mass, He remains unchanged in the final term or issue of the transubstantiation, as will be fully explained in its proper place; nor could we say (God forbid) that Christ is really slain by us in the Mass, a thing which never could be done without the gravest sin; neither can Christ be slain by a new immolation, nor, if He were so immolated, would such a sacrifice have on the part of the victim, an intrinsic and essential relation to the sacrifice of the Cross. Christ therefore remains Victim in Himself before any sacrifice of ours. We shall deal with this matter at greater length when we come to the sacrifice of the Mass. For the present let this suffice in regard to our Paschal Lamb, who by dying hath overcome death, and by rising again hath restored our life.

§2. Christ As Eternal Altar

The closest correlation exists between sacrifice and altar. The existence of the one implies the existence of the other. Hence if we prove that Christ is the eternal altar of His sacrifice, we prove thereby that the sacrifice of that altar, the sacrifice of Christ, is eternal. We have seen already that Christ is at the same time priest and victim, we now state that He is also altar—the eternal altar. But does it not look absurd to pile all these offices and all these titles on the one Christ? Absurd to place a man and that man God, on a level with the stone or bronze appointed to receive the victim's blood!

All this notwithstanding, the three following questions have to be examined and placed under the searchlight of Catholic teaching: First, is Christ an altar? Second, is the risen Christ an altar? Third, what relation does this altar which is theandric and heavenly bear to our own altars.

A. Is Christ The Altar Of His Sacrifice?

A threefold comparison will supply the answer to this question. The altar is compared with the victim to be sanctified, with the blood of the victim to be received, and finally with the divinity whose place the altar supplies.

First Comparison. The Altar and the Victim to be Sanctified.

In sacrifice it may be assumed, as a principle, that the sanctity of the victim is not greater than the sanctity of the altar. For bearing in mind what we have already said, we must know that the sanctity of the victim has its source in the sanctity of the altar, seeing that the sanctity which the altar has from the contact, so to speak, of the presiding and indwelling divinity placed upon it, it communicates to the victim entrusted to it (as in some sense representing God). Here we have an example of the Philosopher's well known saying: what produces any perfection in another, has more perfection in itself than that which it produces on the other. Therefore the victim cannot be holier than the altar. This principle is sanctioned by Christ's own authority. He is rebuking the Scribes and Pharisees: Ye foolish and blind, for whether is greater, the gift, or the temple that sanctifieth the gift (Matt., XXIII. 17-19) .... Ye blind, for whether is greater, the gift, or the altar that sanctifieth the gift (ibid). If then there was an altar on which Christ's sacrifice was offered, that altar could not be lesser in greatness than the victim of Christ's sacrifice. Consequently it must have been one with the Victim and with the priest, in other words, one with Christ Himself. Hence Nicholas Cabasilas, exponent of Eastern theology, says well: "Nothing has the power of interceding and of sanctifying but the Saviour alone. What things, then, have the power of intercession and sanctification? The priest, the victim, and the altar. For the altar sanctifies also, the Lord says: the altar sanctifieth the gift. Seeing therefore that it is He alone who sanctifies, it is He alone who is priest and victim and altar." (Liturgiae exposito P.G. 150, 436).

St. Augustine, the great Doctor of the West, had written long before: "Seeing that the Lord said: Whether is the greater, the gold, or the temple which sanctifieth the gold ? and also said: Whether is the greater, the gift, or the altar which sanctifieth the gift? We must interpret both temple and altar as Christ Himself" (Quaestiones Evangeliorum (lib. I, C. 24. P.L. 35, 1329).[293]

We may look upon the temple and the altar as one. In the passage of St. Matthew above, Christ attributes the same sanctifying virtue to the temple and to the altar.[294] He even speaks of Himself as a temple, that is a temple of spiritual grace, destined to supplant the material temple of the Jews. He is a consecrated temple for the sacrifice of the true Victim, appointed to take the place of that temple which witnessed only the slaughter of victims that were figurative. Thus St. John, II. 19: Destroy this temple and m three days I will rebuild it: that is to say, when you have brought about the destruction of this temple of Jerusalem,[295] until now the house of God, the seat of Jewish worship, the sanctuary of the Old Testament, the one place of legitimate sacrifice, after you have by your crime brought to ruin (= solvite, destroy) [296] its sanctity and election (soon on that account it was to be shattered by the Romans) then in three days I will rebuild it, a changed structure, a house which is God's very own, being the sanctuary of the new and eternal testament, the tabernacle of the true sacrifice, a centre of worship never to be profaned, namely my Body in virtue of the power of an indissoluble life (VII. 16) a Body raised from the dead, to be a vessel of universal propitiation, an ark and a temple that will remain forever. In this sense He poke of the temple of His body (John II. 2 I). Instead of an earthly and shadowy worship, associated with the material ritual centering upon visible victims, our Lord enigmatically announces a future substitute, having a perfect spiritual worship, resplendent with the beauty and the glory of a celestial Victim.

Scripture therefore points out or at least suggests to us, that just as Christ is Priest and Victim, He is also Altar and Temple.

Second Comparison. The Altar as receiving the Blood of the Victim.

This complexus of titles and offices, and all different, would indeed be absurd in another; but in Christ, it is most appropriate. There is all the difference in the world between worship carried out within the limits of human resources and the compass of human means, and worship which is carried out according to the power of God and transcends the who e order and differentiation of sensible things. In a material or sensible system of worship, just as priest and victim are different, so too the altar that receives the blood of the victim must be a thing distinct, and the shrine that contains the altar different again. But seeing that in spiritual worship the priest and the victim are one,[297] an outward altar on which the blood of the Victim slain is poured by the hands of the Priest is unthinkable. The Sacrificer Himself takes the place of the altar, sin e by symbolic immolation He offers His Body to an immolation in blood, and sacramentally besprinkles His Body with that Blood which shall be really shed in the Passion. Here then is the altar besprinkled with the Blood of the Victim [298] sprinkled by the priest, sprinkled bloodlessly, and yet having reference to a sprinkling of real blood. In the Supper the Body of Christ was the altar on precisely the same ground as it was the Victim: in the sense that it was then given over to the blood-shedding of the Passion by a sacramental aspersion of blood.[299] In the Passion likewise the Body was the Altar on precisely the same ground as it was the Victim: in as much as it was empurpled with the stream of blood which the chalice of the Supper caused to flow. St. Ephraem expresses this identity in the following words; He is apostrophizing the Supper room: "0 happy place, no one ever saw or will see what thou has seen. Thou hast seen the Lord become true altar, priest, bread and chalice of salvation .... He is Altar and Lamb, Victim and Sacrificer, Priest and Food" (Hymnus de crucifixione tertius str. 10, ed. Lamy, t. I, p. 660). In a eulogy of the Melchisedechian priesthood Epiphanius writes of the Supper: "He offered Himself in order to bring to an end the sacrifices of the Old Testament, sacrificing a more perfect, a Living Victim for the whole world. He was in that moment Victim, Sacrifice, Priest, and Altar" (Adv. Heares., 55. 4. P.G. 41, 980). Similarly Hesychius: "He shed His intelligible Blood (i. e. intelligible or perceptible only to the eyes of faith) on the altar, that is to say, on His own Body" (In Levit. I, 2. P.G. 93, 883). "For Christ Himself, by the sprinkling of His own Blood, offered His Passion for us unto our salvation", . (col. 885). "For Christ was made the whole of His sacrifice—Priest, Sacrifice, and Altar. He is Himself also the man made ready (Levit. XVI. 21), made ready for the Passion for us" (In Levit., I, 5, col. 1001).[300]

What St. Ambrose wrote to Simplicianus on the altar of the Passion, sounds exactly the same note: "You told me that you were in doubt about the meaning of the saying that Moses, having offered sacrifice and immolated sacred victims to the Lord, put half of the blood into bowls, and poured the other half out at the altar .... Now in the Law, above everything else, the coming of Christ is declared, and His Passion prefigured. Ask yourself then, whether the reference is not to the saving Victim which God the Word offered in Himself, and immolated in His own Body .... then approaching the altar, He poured out the Blood of His Victim .... Do you not see that the Blood poured out was His, from whose side Water and Blood flowed on the altar of the Passion? (Epist. 65. P.L. 16, 1222-1224). Hence according to Ambrose Christ offered the Victim of the Passion sacramentally immolated in His own Body; and "then" approaching to the Passion of His Body, with blood and water He sprinkled that wounded Body, which was the altar of the Passion.[301]

In like manner the eminent mediaeval liturgist, John Beleth, wrote: "We believe that the Body of Christ, the true altar, was sprinkled with blood and water on the Cross" (Rationale divinorum officiorum, c. 104. P.L. 202, 109). A contemporary Syrian writer, Dionysius Bar Salibi in His Expositio Liturgiae (S. S. C. O., t. 93, p. 87) notes that "the slain Body of Christ was sprinkled with His Blood, both in the Supper room, when Jesus said: this is my blood, and on the Cross, when His side was opened with the lance, and His Body was sprinkled with the Blood and water that flowed from it. " [302] Let these gleanings from the tradition of the Church suffice for the present. How ancient and constant this tradition is, will be seen more clearly later.

Third Comparison. The altar as representing the Divinity.

Thus for the Body of Christ to be the altar of His sacrifice is by no means absurd. The altars of the carnal sacrifices both of the Jews and the Gentiles were merely the abiding places of the absent divinity. But what abiding place is more appropriate to God than the Body of the Word, in which dwells the Divinity by a sanctification absolutely physical and substantial, not merely accidental and secondary. In the Incarnation therefore Christ was anointed both as Priest and as Altar.[303] Both dignities in Christ belong to the humanity but as anointed by the divinity. Furthermore any altar, being in a sense the visible representative of God, was competent to receive victims on His behalf. Hence those who desired to offer sacrifices to God, had to do so necessarily through an altar. But Christ, the Victim of salvation, approached to God through Himself. Hence He was also the altar of His own sacrifice. For us too in like manner, He is the altar of every one of our sacrifices, for we can bring no offering to God except through Christ. However the question of our altar will be dealt with more suitably later in this work. Suffice here to deal more in detail with the altar of Christ.

B. Is The Risen Christ The Altar of His Sacrifice?

We have seen that altar and temple are convertible terms in Christ. We must expect to find the perfect realization of altar in His risen Body. He says (John II. 19) that His Body would rise as a temple. The risen Body therefore stands in an absolutely true and perfect sense as the altar that at once annuls and fulfils the sanctity of the figurative altars. Moreover the truth thus implied is stated expressly in the Epistle to the Hebrews XIII. 10: We have an altar whereof they have no power to eat who serve the tabernacle.

In this passage (as will later be explained, when we come to study the Mass), even now Christ is said to be an altar for us. From this altar we are to eat of the sacrifice prepared for us, not the sacrifice of the Mosaic tabernacle, but of the true, heavenly tabernacle, into which by His own blood (IX. 12) entered our high priest who is set on the right hand of the throne of majesty in the heavens, a minister of the holies, and of the true tabernacle, which the Lord hath pitched, and not man (VIII. 1-2).

I pass over the altar which is presented to us in the Apocalypse as heavenly (VI. 9; VIII. 3-5; IX. 13. etc.),[304] and speaking (XVI. 7), which I mentioned on page 184.

The character of altar or temple is certainly not less proper to the immolated Body of Christ after the Resurrection than before. For the Victim of the spiritual sacrifice, in passing into the temple of God's glory, does not, in becoming celestial, lose its inherent character of temple or altar; rather it possesses that character more resplendently from the contact with divine glory. In the ninth book of the work De adoratione in spiritu et veritate (P.G. 68, coll. 569-604, 616-625) Cyril of Alexandria discourses at length on this point. He points out that at last in the Resurrection the Body of Christ was an incorruptible temple and a golden altar. The holy Doctor concludes that "He is the altar, He the incense, He the high priest" (compare ibid. col. 648 and 1, 10, col. 664).

The early Fathers frequently give the name altar to the celestial Christ. Thus Ignatius (Magnes., 7, 2. F. P. 1, 236) speaking of the Son returned to the Father confers on Christ the titles altar and temple: "Hasten all to come together as to the one temple of God, as to the one altar, to the one Jesus Christ, ".[305]

Irenaeus refers to that celestial altar, saying that our eucharistic offerings are directed there: "The Word of God desires that we too should offer a gift at the altar frequently and without intermission. The altar therefore is in heaven: For thither our prayers and offerings are directed. For they are not earthly but heavenly, being made so by God (Contra haeres., I, 4, c. 18, n. 6. P.G. 7, 1029-1030).[306]

Irenaeus makes a syllogism. We offer at the altar by the command of Christ. Thus then: Where our offerings are directed, there the altar is. But our offerings are directed to Heaven. Therefore the altar is in heaven. Origen has much to say on the subject of the celestial altar. In the first place, He holds that Christ approaches to that heavenly altar to be a propitiation for our sins. It is for this reason that He Himself cannot drink the wine of gladness, until He drinks it new with us His sanctified ones in the kingdom of eternal glory: "How can He who approaches to the altar to make propitiation for me a sinner, be in gladness when the bitter sadness of my sins is always ascending to Him?" (In Levit., hom. 7, 2. P.G. 12478).[307]

Nay it was necessary that Christ "should be purified more fully at the heavenly altar, that the pledge of our faith which He had taken up with Him, might be endowed with perpetual purity" (op. cit., 9, n. 5, col 514).[308] This is the idea set down in I. of this chapter.

We shall approach to that heavenly altar by martyrdom particularly, becoming thereby victims of propitiation for others: "Consider also, just as the martyrdom of the Saviour cleansed the world, so too the baptism of our martyrdom may be the healing of many who are cleansed by it. For just as those who assisted at the Mosaic altar ministered by the blood of goats and oxen unto the remission of the sins of the people, so the souls of those who because of their witness to Jesus, fell under the axe of the executioner, do not assist at the heavenly altar in vain, they minister unto the remission of the sins of those who pray. Further we know that, as Jesus Christ offered Himself a Victim, so too priests whose High Priest He is, offer themselves as a victim, and hence they are at the altar as at their proper place;. . But who is that sinless priest, the offerer of a sinless victim, but the man who firmly professes His faith and attains to a perfect martyrdom? " (Exhort. ad Martyr., 30. P.G. II, 60 I). For by martyrdom we are brothers and kinsfolk of the Lamb whom St. John saw lying on the altar. We are worthy in consequence to stand thereat. "In the Apocalypse a lamb is seen standing as it were slain .... to this victim are akin others symbolized by the legal victim. By the other victims akin to this, I mean the holy martyrs who shed their blood, and who with good reason are seen by John standing at the celestial altar" (In Joann., tom. 6, n. 35-36. P.G. 14, 292-293). Though Origen's life had been spared up to now, He lives in the hope of going up to that altar by martyrdom. "Let each one bear in mind how often we stood in danger of dying an ordinary death, and let us reflect that possibly we have been preserved, so that, washed in our own blood and cleansed from every stain, we may at the celestial altar join the company of those who have similarly striven ...." (Exhort. ad mart., n. 39. P.G. 11, 616). Finally the perfect joy of the martyrs is in the service of this great altar: "For who can follow the soul of the martyr as she passes beyond the realms of the air and hastens to the altar of heaven? .... For there under the altar of God the souls of the martyrs are said to abide .... in this abode they assist at the divine sacrifices .... Happy then are the souls that follow Christ along the path which He has traced. Because they follow Him, they arrive at the altar of God, where our Lord Jesus Christ Himself is the High Priest of the good things to come" (In Judic., hom. 7 n. 2. P.G. 12, 981).

I admit that, just as in the case of Irenaeus, so too Origen does not state explicitly that Christ is that celestial altar of His sacrifice. Both speak of the altar, and so doing what else can they have in mind than that thing through which sanctification is won for our gifts (namely by their being changed into the Body of Christ), by which a sanctification of glory is added to Christ once mortal and passible, by which propitiatory virtue, and at the same time a sacrificial and sacerdotal dignity, are bestowed on the sufferings of the martyrs? What else, I repeat, can these Doctors mean than the substantial sanctification of the assumed humanity by the Word itself, that sanctification by which the Son of Man is empowered to change His mortality into immortality, to present to God as a heavenly gift that which leaves our hand as an earthly one, and to make the sharers of His sufferings the sharers of His glory? In other words Christ was and is His own altar, because in the victim which He offers there is no inherent sanctity save that which arises from the Incarnation. There is no sanctity which has not its sufficient origin in the substantial sanctity of His humanity.[309] That this must have been the thought more or less obscurely formulated by Irenaeus and Origen is shown by the analogy that exists between their expressions and clearer patristic sayings, like those of Ignatius and Cyril of Alexandria, and others cited already or to be later cited, proves this to us.

A similar line of thought we find in an oration of St. Gregory Nazianzen. He fixes His gaze on an altar from which His enemies cannot drag Him, though they expel Him from the office of a bishop (Or., 26, 16. P.G. 36, 35, 1248-1249);[310] St. Gregory also exhorts us to immolate ourselves to God on the heavenly altar (Or. 45, 23. P.G. 36, 656).[311] From the many testimonies of Hesychius we take the following. Commenting on Leviticus I. 5 (P.G. 93, 696-697) "He pours the blood upon the altar, that is upon the Body of the Only-Begotten; for It is truly called an altar .... Referring to this, Moses said: You shall make an altar of earth unto me, for the Body of the Lord is made from our earth, that is from the earthly dough or mass of humanity. Further on the Lord says through Moses: And if thou make an altar of stone unto me, thou shalt not build it of hewn stones: for if thou lift up a tool upon it, it shall be defiled. For the Flesh of Christ was neither cut nor hewn by the hand of man." Again: "He commanded that all the rest of the blood of the calf should be poured round the foot of the altar of holocaust, which is in the tabernacle of the testimony. Once more let us understand that the altar of the holocaust is the Body of Christ: for as He is Himself the Priest and the Victim, so too He is the Altar". Finally, In Leviticum, VI. I 3 (P.G. 93, 848) : "The Lord says to Moses: This is the perpetual fire which shall never go out on the altar. For God is a spirit, and they that adore Him, must adore Him in spirit and in truth. Hence too the intelligible altar, which is the Body of Christ, has the unquenchable fire of the ministration of the spirit."

We have seen that St. Augustine calls Christ an altar. He sets apart the earthly altar at which both the just and the unjust assist. Christ is the one priest of the celestial altar, and yet not alone. It is as the whole Christ, Head and members, that He stands there (In Psalm. 25, Ennar. 2, n. 10. P.L. 36, 193. 1 ;[312] Sermo, 35 I, n. 7. P.L. 38, 1543. Compare Contra advers. leg. et prophet., I, I, C. 19. P.L. 42, 26); if you betake yourself to this altar, you will be taken up in holocaust, and from being mortal you will be made immortal (In Psalm 42, n. 5; In Psalm. so, n. 23. P.L. 36, 479, 599).[313]

A number of mediaeval writers will be cited later in this work. One or two will suffice for the present. St. Bruno of Segni (In Psalm. 42. P.L. 164, 848) referring to the words Introibo ad altare Dei says: "This altar is in heaven. This altar is the humanity of our Saviour.[314] Gerhoh of Reichersberg (In Psalm. 25. P.L. 193, 1166) explaining the words circumdabo altare tuum writes: "I will encompass the heavenly altar, that is Christ's human nature, which Christ Himself, true Priest, has set up for a title, pouring oil on the top of it.[315] John Beleth illustrating, in the manner of a liturgist, the typical relation of our altars to Christ, thus points to the celestial antitype: "For the altar signifies Christ. In the Law God commanded: You shall fashion an altar of the earth unto me.[316] The altar of earth is Christ born of a Virgin. Hence it is said: Truth is sprung out of the earth. This is the earth which gave its fruit, sublime fruit, namely Christ, set over the angelic choirs in heaven" (Rationale divinorum officiorum, c. 104. P.L. 202, 109).

Though a number of authorities are reserved until another time, yet it is sufficiently clear that the earlier writers were wont to speak of an eternal altar in heaven, which is Christ. Now the eternity of the altar, together with the eternity of the priesthood, proves also the eternity of the sacrifice.

C. Our Material Altars And The heavenly Altar.

We shall compare the heavenly altar 1) with the Church and her members; 2) with the Table of the Supper room and the wood of the Cross; 3) with our material altars.

Seeing that the titles altar and temple are attributed to the Body of Christ,[317] they also extend to the Church, which is united to Christ as body to Head, and is one flesh with Him. Hence the Church is called a temple in Eph. II. 21, the faithful are spoken of as a temple in 1. Cor., III. 16-17 and in 11. Cor., VI. 16. The Fathers followed the same mode of expression, as when Ignatius referred to the Ephesians as a temple of the Father, a temple of the Lord, a temple of God (Ephes. IX, I, XV, 3. P. I, 220, 224), or when Polycarp admonishes widows,[318] to comport themselves as an altar (thusiasterion) of God (IV. 3. F. P. I, 300). Clement of Alexandria (Strom. 7, 6. P.G. 9, 445) and Origen (Contra Celsum, 8, 17. P.G. 1, 1540-1544) both speak of the Christian soul as an altar (bomos) and the appellation was universally adopted by later Christian writers.[319]

Actually under Christ and in Christ, the Church is her own temple and altar. Because the Church is symbolized by the sacramental Body of Christ, it follows necessarily that when she visibly offers sacrifice, she also immolates herself invisibly (since the offering of a sign must include the offering of what is signified thereby). But in all spiritual sacrifice, as we have said, the priest, victim and altar are one and the same.

In a secondary way there is nothing to prevent us calling either the table of the Supper room or the Cross by the name of altar. For the Cross bore the blood-stained Body and the table the sacramental Body of the Lord. Neither however fulfilled the office of sanctifying the victim or receiving the Blood on behalf of God.

To my knowledge the first writer to refer to the altar of the Supper table was St. Ephraem. He exclaims: "O happy place, in thee the bread of the firstlings was broken. Thou wert the first Church of Christ and the first altar" (op. cit., str. 12, p. 660-662). The thought is more definitely expressed in the Sermo secundus in hebdomadam sanctam n. 8 Ed. Lamy, t. 1, p. 384-386: "The table was His altar and He consecrated it whole. On that paschal eve the cenacle was the Church and the table the sacred altar. " In the Sermo tertius in hebdomadam sanctam n. 6 and 7, p. 426-428: "This table was an altar and the cenacle a temple .... Blessed is the table which became-an altar for the apostles."

One might easily find traces of the comparison between the Cross and an Altar: I) In the Epistle to the Hebrews XIII. 12-13 where the death of Christ after He had borne His shame without the gate, corresponds to the burning of the bodies of the victims without the camp. 2) In the First Epistle of St. Peter II. 24: who His own self bore our Sins in His body upon the tree: something similar seems to underlie these words. 3) In the Epistola Barnabae (6, 3. F. P. I, 58) this same is to an extent insinuated, seeing that our Lord was crucified "because He himself was going to offer the vessel of the spirit, as a sacrifice for our sins, in order that the type established in Isaac who was offered upon the altar (thusiasterion) might be fulfilled. 4) Tertullian in Adversus Judaeos (10 P.L. 2, 626) says "that Isaac led by His father as a victim and himself carrying the wood" was a prophetic figure "of the death of Christ given as a victim by the Father, and bearing the wood of His Passion". These passages seem at first sight to suggest the thought of the Cross as an altar, but a more diligent consideration will show that the comparison is not so much between the Cross and the altar, as between the Cross and the wood destined to burn up the bodies without the camp, the bodies of the victims offered to God at the altar of the tabernacle (Hebr., 1. Peter coll. Levit., XVI. 17 and 18); or between the Cross and the wood on which Isaac was to be burned after He had been slain upon the altar. This altar Holy Scripture (Gen. XXII. 9) expressly distinguishes from the wood (Barnab. Tertull.). When the Fathers began to assimilate the Cross to an altar, they did not use the word corresponding to our altar (altare), they used another word ara. The word ara was used in Latin properly for a lesser altar, on which the incense or other things were burnt .... We have an example of this mode of expression and the distinction underlying it in the original form of our paschal hymn (incorrectly attributed to St. Ambrose) Ad regias agni dapes.

The second strophe ran as follows: "Whose sacred Body a burnt offering on the altar (ara) of the Cross, etc.[320] In a prayer ascribed to St. Ambrose which we are wont to say before Mass, we have the following words: "O Jesus Christ, our great High Priest, who didst offer thyself for us to God the Father, as a pure and spotless victim on the altar (ara) of the Cross, " etc., (compare Trident., sess. 22, cap. 1. D. 938) The author of the work Liber de promissionibus et praedicationibus Dei (pars I, C. 17. P.L. 51, 747),[321] certainly sees a correspondence between the Passion of Christ and the figurative sacrifices of Abraham, in the fact that the Patriarch "hastened for three days to come to the altar (ara) of the Cross with an innocent victim". Leo the Great connects both ara and altare in the Cross when He writes: "He was crucified without the camp, that with the cessation of the rite of the ancient victims, a new victim might be placed on a new altar (altare), and that the Cross of Christ might be the altar (ara) not of a temple, but of the whole world." (Sermo 59, c. 5. P.L. 54, 340, compare Sermo 55, c. 2, col. 324). I cannot remember having met in the literature of the Church for the first four centuries,[322] any example of the designation of the Cross as altare or ara of Christ. This is all the more remarkable because in that period the Cross is called by other names, some of them very strange. For instance, it is referred to as a ladder, Zeno of Verona, tract. 1. 2, tr. 14, c. 5. P.L. II, 433; a chariot, Ambrose (Expos evangel. secund. Lucam, l. 10, n. 109. P.L. 15, 1831), a ship, Ambrose (In Psalm. 47 n. 13. P.L. 14, 1151) a wall and a shield (Chrysostom, hom. on the words Father, if it be possible, etc. P.G. 31, 45). And these are but few out of the many examples.

Long before the term altar was used of the Cross, the name altar was attached to the board or slab (mensa, trapeza), at first made of wood and afterwards of stone, which was usually set up for the Eucharistic sacrifices. This use is easily enough explained in so far as the table so set up and used, according to the laws of the Church, was anointed with holy oil, this anointing being a symbol of the unction of the divinity, which was Christ's by the hypostatic union. Hence the material altar was a symbol of the true altar: Christ Himself. The erection of such material altars (thusiasteria) in the sacred edifices of the Christians, is mentioned by Origen,[323] (In librum Jesu Nave hom. 2, I, and hom. 10, 3. P.G. 12, 833 and 881. Compare hom. 3 in Jud., n. z. P.G. 12, 962) who also speaks of their consecration and adornment. At this time of course they were not shown openly, they were hidden away in the catacombs, etc. Hence Cyprian (Ad Demetrianum, 12. P.L. 4, 553. Compare Ep. 40, 5; 63, 5; 64, 1; 66, 1 and 2. P.L. 4, col. 336, 377, 389, 398-399) complains that whereas idol worship (in public) is so prevalent, "altars [that is, material altars] of God are non-existent or hidden away". At the same time Tertullian (De oratione 19. P.L. 1, 1182) [324] was speaking of the ARA of God"; although Minutius Felix (Octavius 32. P.L. 3, 339) had already admitted that the Christians had no "arae", He writes: "You think we hide what we worship because we have no shrines and arae". And Origen (Contra Celsum, 8, 17. P.L. II, 1540-1544) later admitted with Minutius that the Christians had "no shrines and arae" (that is in the sense that the pagans had). For to Origen the only "arae" (bomoi) were the souls of the just. In fact the earlier Christian writers made a clear distinction between the ara or bomos and the altare or thusiasterion. There were no victims on the arae,[325] but the altare had its victim [326]. Long after these earliest Christian writers, Lactantius not only excludes ara from Christian worship (Divin. Instit. 1, 2, C. 2. P.L. 6, 259), but Arnobius excluded both ara and altare (Advers. Gent., 6, 1. P.L. 5, 1162). After this time however Doctors of the Church spoke freely and constantly of material altars. Thus, for example, St. Hilary (in the Fragment. z, c. 16 of His historical work, P.L. 10 643, compare Fragment, 3, c. 9, col. 665) and also St. Optatus (De schismate Donatistarum, I, 6. c. 1, P.L. II, 1063 foll) [327]

The truth is that our only true temple and altar is Christ, through whom the true Victim of the true Priest is offered to God. Consequently the august name of altar does not belong to our material structures, only in so far as they are deputed to represent Christ. For just as the ministerial priest represents the High Priest (3 S. 82, 1, 2) and the Melchisedechian appearance of the sacrifice represents the Victim of the Passion, so the living heavenly altar is represented by the table which receives the oblations of the faithful which are to be consecrated to God (though it confers of itself nothing to their consecration). Hence it is not by analogy with the material altars of our churches that we call Christ our altar. Rather our altars are so called by analogy with Him, to whom it belongs primarily to be the altar of our sacrifice, as He was the altar of His own. Naturally the dignity and the name of altar belongs to Him in virtue of a kind of proportional relationship, because He stands in the same relationship to His Victim as the altars in ancient times did to the blood victims of the animal sacrifices. For the body of Christ was sprinkled with the blood of the victim sacramentally at the supper, and thereafter really on the cross; in Himself and through Himself, without the intermediary of any higher abode of God, He presented His Blood Victim to the Almighty. Therefore just as Christ is our one victim, and our one Priest, He is also our one Altar, on whom the people in union with the priest, subordinate to Christ the great High Priest, offer to God the sacrifice of the Body and Blood of Christ. Indeed the Eucharistic consecration makes the altar and the victim our own: "The Body does not become present without altar or without priest: But Emmanuel is all these—Altar and Body or victim, and Oblation and Priest, and Offerer" (Dionysius Bar Salibi, Expositio Liturgiae C. S. C. O., t. 93p. . 99).

Since then it was not the custom of the earlier Fathers to give to other things than Christ the name and the dignity of altar, even if at a later period those other things were called altars, the primitive faith in respect of our Mass sacrifice was not weakened or obscured thereby. Sacrifice certainly does connote an altar; even though as may happen at times, our sacrifices are not offered on an altar made with hands, the principal Altar is never wanting, that is the altar not made with hands, which is Christ. Moreover, as we have said, Christ would not be the altar of His Victim, nor consequently of ours, if He had not offered in the sacrament. Hence the more the Fathers speak of Christ as the one altar, the more they emphasize the Eucharistic sacrifice. This exactly is what the Roman Breviary says for the feast of the Dedication of the Basilica of the Most Holy Saviour: "Although even from Apostolic times, places were dedicated to God ...., where .... the Christian people .... were wont to partake of the Eucharist, still these places did not receive such solemn ritual consecration, nor had it yet become a custom to erect in them a titular altar which, anointed with chrism, would be an express figure of our Lord Jesus Christ, our Altar, Victim and Priest", (Lesson IV).[328]

Throughout this chapter my intention has been to confirm the eternity of the sacrifice from the eternity of the altar. For the celestial altar is never without the gift once offered. God never ceases to hold as His own, and ratify divinely, the gifts kept on that altar.

§3. Christ as Eternal Intercessor

We ask: 1) Does Christ pray in heaven? 2) Does He adore? 3) Are the insignia of the wounds of His Passion on His Flesh? The bearing which these questions have on the heavenly sacrifice will become plain from our arguments in this chapter.

A. The Prayer Of Christ in Heaven

Suarez (De Incarn. disp. 45, a. 2) and still more Petavius (De Incarn., L 12, C. 8, parag. 10-16) have culled passages without number wherein the Fathers state that Christ in heaven asks favours for us, petitions, prays and so on. On the other hand, Vasquez (De Incarn., disp. 82, C. 2) opposing Suarez and Thomassinus (De Incarn., 1. 9, c. 6) opposing Petavius, have shown at great length that the prayer of Christ in heaven, as usually understood by the Fathers, is not prayer in the proper sense. All these expressions, like petitions, supplications, prayer, as used of the heavenly Christ, are really that mediation or intercession which is the eternal presence of Christ in the sight of God, in that assumed flesh which He offered for us.[329] And this undeniably is the proper mode of intercession for a victim whose role it is to win for man the mercy of God by the mere presenting of Himself before God. Evidently then the intercession of Christ is closely associated with His eternal state of Victim, for it is none other than the impetrative aspect of His sacrifice.

This is the only manner of intercession by the heavenly Christ that Holy Scripture sets before us. First, in two passages of the Epistle to the Hebrews, Christ's intercession for us, and His presence in heaven on our behalf, are equated: (Jesus) always living to make intercession for us (VII. 25, compare Rom., VIII 34), and Jesus entered into between itself, that He may appear now in the presence of God for us (IX. 24); secondly, Christ's function as our advocate with the Father is clearly shown to consist in this, that He is present in heaven as a propitiation for our sins (1. John II. 1-2).

St. Gregory Nazianzen is the great champion of this interpretation. He rejects all idea of humiliation in prayer by our Advocate with the Father, and places this advocacy solely in His presenting His humanity which suffered in the past: "We have Jesus Christ our Advocate. He does not humbly prostrate Himself for us at the feet of the Father, nor make Himself abject after the manner of a slave. Such servility is not to be thought of, it is unworthy of the Spirit. The Father could not demand it, the Son could not endure it. To think this of God would be unjust and impious. As the Word and Counsellor of the Father, He persuades Him to bear with me, because of all that as Man He has suffered. This, I think, is what advocacy means here." (Or. 30, n. 14. P.G. 36, 121-124).

Theodoretus in the same way says that Christ prays in the fact that He presents to the Father the first fruits of our flesh: "Christ the Lord dies for us, and rising from the dead He sits at the right hand of the Father, and there cares for us unceasingly. He presents to the Father the first fruits which He assumed from us, and through these first fruits secures our salvation." (In Rom., VIII. 34. P.G. 83, 144).

Nicholas Cabasilas faithfully records the teaching of these Greek Fathers, when He writes "For [Christ] is the Mediator through whom we have secured all those goods which have been given, or rather are always being given, to us by God. For having once been our Mediator and having given us all that He interceded for, He did not withdraw, rather He is ever interceding, not by some form of words and prayers, as ambassadors do, but by an act. What is this act? He unites Himself to us, and through Himself imparts to us His own graces", (Liturgiae expositio, c. 45. P.G. 150, 464). His intercession therefore is His efficacious mediation.

The Latin writers give the same teaching more explicitly. St. Ambrose writes: [Christ] As Priest there offers Himself .... in reality, Where He intervenes as advocate for us with the Father (De officiis ministrorum, I, 238. P.L. 16, 94). His intercession is the eternal oblation of Himself.

St. Gregory the Great interpreting St. Paul and St. John, says that the intercession of Christ is the presentation of the assumed humanity which has been taken up to God: "The intercession of the Only-Begotten Son for man, is His presenting Himself as man before the co-eternal Father. His prayer for man is His assumption of the nature of man in the supereminence of the divinity. Therefore the Lord does not intercede for us by word but by mercy, because that which He did not wish to be damned in His elect He liberated by assuming it", (Moral., 1. 22, 17, n. 43, P.L. 75, 542).[330]

And again: "In this way He speaks to the Father for us, that He presents Himself to the Father in our likeness. His words, His petition consists precisely in this: He presents Himself to the Father as Man for mankind. Because interceding for sinners, He presents Himself as the Just Man who merits indulgence for others" (op. cit., 1. 23, c. 2, n. 4, col. 289-291, and in particular the passage quoted above from 1. I, C. 24, n. 32. P.L. 75, 542.)

So too in the Sermo, on 1. Kings I. 2 3, as reported by the Abbot Claudius, Gregory thus spoke: "Because by His Blood we are reconciled to God, He prays that the word may be fulfilled, and in this fulfillment is our salvation, and His prayer is His continued presenting in the sight of God the Eternal Father of His humanity assumed for our salvation; and because He offers Himself unceasingly in this manner, this act of His opens the way for our reception into life." (In 1. Kings 1. 1, c. I, n. 45. P.L. 79, 45). This passage is too abundantly clear to call for explanation.

Paulinus of Aquileia says that the advocacy, the intercession of Christ, is simply His manifestation of Himself before God: "He presents the human nature to the Father in the oneness of the Person of God and Man. For this is His intercession with God the Father for us. St. John says that He not only makes intercession, but also that He is a propitiation for our sins." (Contra Felicem Urgellitanum, l, I, C. 23. P.L. 99, 376).

The testimony from the commentaries of Pelagius on the Epistola ad Romanos, at one time attributed to St. Jerome (P.L. 30, 685) is valuable. The Pseudo-Primasius copied it word for word and made it His own (In Rom., VIII. 34, P.L. 68, 466) : "The Arians say that He who intercedes is the lesser. We must reply, the Lord is not forgetful, He does not need to be reminded constantly of those whom He Himself has justified: His intercession is this: that as True and Eternal Priest, He always presents and offers to the Father as our pledge, the Glorified Humanity which He assumed".

Like Gregory the Great, Hincmar of Rheims in the Epistola ad Hincmarum Laudunensem, c. I, c. II (P.L. 126, 325) writes: "And seated at the right hand of the Father, that is in the glory of the majesty of the Father, He makes intercession, not by word, but by mercy for us."

In the same way Remigius Antissiodorensis on Hebr., VII. 25: "He makes intercession for us in that He assumed a human nature which He ever manifests to the Father for us, in order to bestow mercy on us according to each of His natures." (Inter opera Haymonis Halberstatensis, P.L. 117, 883).[331]

St. Bruno the Carthusian commenting on Psalm 109, 4, places the eternal duration of the Melchisedechian priesthood of Christ, even after His Resurrection, in His prayer: "He is called a priest forever in His own person, not because He offers forever the sacrifice of His Body and Blood, for He offered this once only, but because He prays forever for them before the Father. For it is the office of priests, not only to offer sacrifice, but also to pray for the people", (Expositio in Psalm. 109, P.L. 152, 1228). But He explains what is meant by Christ praying in heaven, when He says: "The Apostle here extols the act and the manifestation of the sacerdotal function in Christ even now; He disparages by contrast the efficacy of the ancient priesthood, when He says: Jesus can save forever: himself approaching to God, not by alien animal victims, but by Himself the Living Victim offered on the altar of the Cross. Jesus, I say, always living to make intercession f or us to the Father, because His flesh is forever in heaven to the end that by its manifestation it may be an everlasting appeal to the Father on our behalf (Expositio in Epist. ad Hebr., VII. 25. P.L. 153, 527). Further on, commenting on IX. II: "Christ being come to the Father, always living to make intercession for us by the presentation of Himself" (col 538), fittingly and completely the Saint explains the intercession of our Lord, as the eternal manifestation of the living Victim before the eyes of God in heaven.

Finally I quote William of St. Theodoris, who says: "He intervenes for us as advocate, He who by His nature is able to intervene for us, He presents in a manner before God the Father, the Flesh which He assumed from us and for us." (De corpore et sanguine Domini, c. 10. P.L. 180, 358).

St. Thomas agrees with the writers quoted where He says: "Christ entered into heaven to make intercession for us, as is said in Hebr., VII. For this representation of Himself, through the human nature which He bore with Him into heaven, is intercession for us." (3. S. 57. 6). It is true that the holy Doctor in another place (In Hebr., VII. lect. 4), having first said "He makes intercession for us, in the first place by presenting His humanity which He assumed for us," went on to add "Likewise by expressing the desire of His most holy Soul for our salvation, with which desire He makes intercession for us". But these words need cause no difficulty. In this last statement St. Thomas does not introduce anything external to the intercession in act of the sacrifice, the significance of which in any case is ever present to God. He merely wishes to point out clearly, that Christ who intercedes for us, by presenting Himself as Victim, is Christ the Victim who desires our salvation and does not conceal this desire but makes it manifest. But there is a very great difference between having this will and making this will known to God—a thing which none of our theologians has ever doubted—and the offering up of prayers and the pouring out of petitions. All this we exclude from Christ in heaven; the ancient writers rejected it, St. Thomas likewise expressly rejects it. In Rom., VIII (lect. 7), He distinguishes and sets apart two things: on the one hand the actual petition of Christ on earth (Viator), and especially of Christ as offering the sacrifice, and on the other the desire of our salvation, which to the exclusion of petition, is now alone in keeping with Christ's state in heaven: "He is said to make intercession for us in two ways. In one way by praying for us, according to John XVII. 20: Not for them (the apostles) only do I pray, but for them also who their word shall believe in me. But now His intercession for us is His will for our salvation (John XVII. 24) l will that where I am, they also may be with me. In another way He makes intercession for us by presenting in the sight of His Father the humanity assumed for us, and the mysteries celebrated in that humanity.

This is the teaching of antiquity, it is also the teaching of the Middle Ages. It is no surprise then to find Franciscus Sonnius, in the sixteenth century, criticising very sharply the opposite teaching of some later writers: "The blood sacrifice on the altar of the Cross is over and past, and as blood sacrifice it is no more repeated. But that reality which is offered, which is Christ, lasts forever. He hath an everlasting priesthood, always living to make intercession for us: this means that He makes intercession by presenting Himself as having suffered death in the past, but it does not mean that He sends up prayers in heaven to the Father, as some impiously hold (Demonstrationum religionis christianae, lib. 2, tr. 3, cap. 14. Paris, 1547, fol. 61).[332]

In our own day Cardinal Franzelin (De Verbo Incarnato, p. 546549) does indeed reject any and every kind of prayer which appeals to the mercy of God, but at the same time He attributes to Christ in heaven prayer of some kind, based on the merits of the Redemption. The eminent theologian is surely inconsistent. In the matter of merit appeal is made to justice; but appeal to justice is not petition. For the claim for the payment of a debt never will be and never can be called a prayer in the proper sense. For even when prayer is not a petition for mercy on those who deserve punishment, it does at least imply some liberality towards those who have not deserved it, should the petition be granted; because petition is for something freely bestowed, otherwise it is not prayer at all. Hence we must admit, that Christ now in heaven makes intercession with God on the ground of justice (for in heaven now there is no examination, no humiliation of the Incarnation, Christ is in glory).

We must even say that He makes intercession in heaven, not as praying, but as making known His will; not as a suppliant before God, but as one using the power of God as His own power;[333] not as imploring mercy, but as bestowing it; not as a petitioner for grace, but as the Lord dispensing glory and pardon. For just as in heaven, He who issues commands with the Father, does not command the Father, so He who is entreated with the Father, does not Himself entreat the Father. Neither does He appeal on our behalf to God the Holy Ghost, whom He together with the Father pours out upon us, for Christ Himself is God. He does all this not only by a natural right as He is God, but also by an acquired right, acquired not only by the Incarnation but also accruing to Him by way of the Passion, by reason of which, as we have seen, Jesus was crowned with honour and glory. When we say therefore that Christ appeals to God for mercy towards man on the ground of justice, we mean that Christ Himself lavishes on us the riches of God's mercy, which have been made His own. "The Lord therefore makes intercession for us, not by word but by mercy" (Gregory the Great). That is to say, God heard the cry of our Victim penetrating the heavens, where Christ being consummated, does not exert Himself, so to speak, to secure our reconciliation, but having found it, imparts it to us. He became to all that obey Him, the cause of eternal salvation. For in the place of the prayers which our Pontiff offered once by His sacrifice on earth to God, there now remains the blessing of our Pontiff, namely the sending of the Holy Ghost (Hebr., V. 6-10). In a word, the intercession of Christ is the eternal mediation of our Victim, as explained above.

B. Does Christ Adore In Heaven?

Adoration is necessarily linked to prayer. Whoever must pray must adore. Christ certainly did adore on earth. He was in the form of a servant, through the temporary dispensation or economy by which it was necessary for Him to come in the form of sinful flesh (that is in the flesh subject to suffering and death), in order fitly to carry out the work of the Redemption. During this time the divinity was not yet made manifest, nor was the humanity totally translated into a divine condition, so that by the same miracle by which the uncreated nature was concealed, in His created nature He would be subject to certain obligations, or certain defects of mere humanity. He could, for instance, be afflicted by others, He could be assisted by God, He could be obedient, He could pray, He could adore. For the divine Esse which the Man Christ possessed, had not as yet exerted its full efficacy; although It dwelt in the substance of the assumed humanity, nevertheless It had not yet blossomed into flower, so to speak, in all the branches of the faculties of that human nature. These defects were removed later, when, glory pouring into and sublimating all that was thus inferior in Christ, the Incarnation was crowned with its supreme perfection, and God Himself was made manifest in the very Flesh of Christ.[334]

It is in this sense that St. Ambrose speaks of Christ: "Then Man according to the flesh, now in all things God" (De excessu fratris sui Satyri, 1. 2, n. 91. P.L. 16, 1341). And Prosper, or if not Prosper some contemporary of His, author of the poem De divina providentia: "Up to now, O Jesus, we knew thee in what is ours, from now what is ours has passed into thine own" (vers. 542-543. P.L. 5I, 629).

So we see with what good reason St. Peter said that Jesus, by ascending into heaven and sitting at the right hand of the Father, was made by God both "Christ" and "Lord": God has made both Christ and Lord this same Jesus whom you crucified (Acts II. 36). Rightly He says that He was then made Lord, because then the divine condition prevailed over all. Rightly too He says that He was then made Christ, because it was then that the unction or the chrism of the divinity, descended from the crown of the Nazarite,[335] that is the consecrated one, and, so to speak, ran down to the hem of His garment; the glory of the Only-Begotten being now no longer shrouded or dimmed by the veils of His human Soul or Body.

The teaching of St. Paul is an echo of the words of St. Peter—He humbled himself, becoming obedient unto death, even unto the death of the Cross, for which cause, after His death, Jesus was proclaimed "Lord" (Philip. II. 6-11).[336] Thomassinus (De Incarn. Verbi Dei, 1. 8, C. II) cites other Scripture passages which were explained in this sense by many of the Fathers.

When we considered the teaching of the Fathers on the sacrifice and the prayer of Christ, we saw that to attribute humiliation, prostration at the feet of the Father, creaturely adoration, to the celestial Christ our Redeemer, was absolutely repugnant to them. For He has entered into His glory, though He still retains His full humanity. Christ our Redeemer "Priest of the eternal sacrifices, eternal Ruler of the eternal kingdom" (Tertullian) is God, one with the Father and the Holy Ghost, the single object of vision, glorification and adoration.

C. The Stigmata Of The Passion.

The scars made in His sacred Body which Christ bore with Him into heaven as marks of the Passion throw a further light on Christ's manifestation of His humanity in heaven, its mode and its intercessory character. For as Thomassinus (De Incarn., 10, 13) writes: "Again from another point of view it will be plain to us, that the priesthood of Christ is not inactive or idle in heaven, rather it is active and never without the exercise of the sacerdotal office, if we observe the scars of His wounds still fresh, as the marks of a victim just immolated, and that the Body marked with these scars has the very form and fashion of an eternal Victim". It is the established teaching of the Fathers and Doctors of the Church, that Christ keeps forever the scars of the wounds in His Flesh.[337] Various special reasons have been assigned for the retention of the wounds. Thus St. Ambrose (In Luc. XXIV. 35-39. P.L. 15, 1846) : He preferred to bear into heaven the wounds received for us, rather than remove them: so that He might show them to God the Father as the price of our freedom. This the Father places at His right hand, embracing the trophies of our Redemption."

The teaching of Bede (In Luc. XXIV. 40. P.L. 92, 630) on this subject influenced later writers.[338] Christ is in glory with His wounds "so that as a suppliant before the Father for us, He may show for all eternity the kind of death He underwent for the life of man". Thus Bede writes that He supplicates through His wounds: Guitmund of Aversa (De corporis et sanguinis Christi veritate. 1, 2. P.G. 149, 1460) that by His wounds He intercedes for us: "But even now also interceding for us, even this very day showing His Body with the wounds, He manifests Himself as the One who was born, who died, who rose from the dead, and ascended into heaven for us". Sicard of Cremona (Mitrale, 1, 3, c. 6. P.L. 213, 232) very concisely: "Showing the wounds He makes intercession to the Father for us". Meanwhile Ernaldus Bonaevallensis [339] in His work De cardinalibus operibus Christi (c. 4. P.L. 189, 1631) had written more fully on this subject: "In all things the Father was well pleased with the Son, nor was any trace of the serpent found in Him, and God did not repent of His priesthood, because the sacrifice which He offered on the cross is so acceptable to the goodness of God, seeing that its virtue lasts forever, that the offering is no less acceptable in the sight of the Father today, than it was on the day when Blood and water issued from His pierced side, and the wounds retained in the Body for all time demand their price, which is the salvation of man, and demand too the reward of obedience. "Clearly then the teaching on the retention of the scars in the celestial Christ was commonplace with the writers of the Middle Ages. At the same time, we may not think that Christ is formally in the condition of Victim, simply by the visible relics of the wounds. No, the condition of Victim is retained by the glory whereby death was swallowed up in victory, as explained above. But as that very glory corresponded to the immolation, so now it sheds all the more beauty on the wounds of Christ. Hence we say that Christ's state of victimhood is made resplendent by the stigmata; although even without the stigmata, that state would continue substantially the same.

§4. Conclusion On Various Teachings Regarding the Heavenly Sacrifice.

We have seen that the Body of Christ, offered at the Supper and immolated in the Passion, retains eternally the character of Victim which accrued to it from the sacrifice and was not abolished by the Resurrection but rather enhanced by the divine ratification and consummation—the Victim being now translated into the sanctuary of heavenly glory, where it obliges God in justice to Christ as Priest, to show mercy to us.

Bearing this in mind, we can now pass judgment on the various teachings bearing upon the celestial sacrifice. We know now that the word sacrifice may be taken in two senses: actively, when it signifies the sacrificial action in which the victim is sacrificed, and passively, signifying the victim sacrificed by that action. It seems to us that those authors err by defect who fail to realize the eternal continuance of the Victim, as Victim, (that is, of the sacrifice in the passive sense); while those err by excess who say that the sacrificial action (the sacrifice in the active sense) is eternal. For the sacrificial action is over, it remains only in effect, in that He who gave the Gift to God is faithful, and does not withdraw His gift from God, as though withdrawing Himself—the Gift-from the sanctuary of God, and so making it profane. The Victim however (that is the passive sacrifice) continues formally, and furthermore it lasts in the very apex of its perfection. It was given over to God, it was accepted by God, and by His acceptance, God sanctioned and now eternally sanctions the gift contract.

Those therefore err by defect who simply overlook the eternal sacrifice, as a number of modern theologians do. More seriously do they err by defect, who explicitly reject the eternal sacrifice, so much so that with Lugo (De mysterio incarnationis, disp. 28, n. 33), they are naturally driven to the inference, that after the Judgment day, when the sacrifice of the Eucharist shall have ceased on earth, Christ is no longer truly Priest. Those also err by defect who, though verbally retaining the eternal sacrifice in heaven, say that the Victim formally as such is not eternal, but that equally with the blessed Christ adores God eternally.[340] Thus J. Grimal (Le Sacerdoce et le sacrifice de N.S.J.C.., 2e ed., p. 225-226, 248).[341]

We now pass on to consider those views that err by excess. (The Socinian heretics admit of no sacrificial action of Christ on earth at all, any and every sacrificial activity must be in heaven. We shall not discuss this view; our concern is with the opinions of Catholic theologians). We may classify them in two schools. One, German especially, the other French. Between them there is this difference: that the German school leans more or less to the teaching that all the sacrificial activity of Christ is internal, at the same time it will not deny that these activities are shown outwardly by some bodily manifestation; the French school on the other hand rather insists on the sensible external condition of our sacrificial action.

Thalhofer (Das Opfer des alten und des neuen Bundes mit besonderer Rucksicht auf den Hebraerbrief und die Katholische Messopferlehre. Ratis., 1870, p. 210 foll).[342] is the leader of the German school. He states expressly that the internal act of obedience in submitting to death is the sacrificial action. This act of obedience is eternally renewed in heaven (now manifest by the wounds, as by the torments in the past). Thus there is an active continuance in heaven of this sacrifice.[343] This also is more or less the view of J. T. Franz (Die eucharistische Wandlung und die Epiklese der griechischen und orientalien Liturgien, 2, p. 61-63, Grenoble 1880).[344] Now these writers destroy the sacrificial action, precisely in so far as they make it internal. Because sacrificial action in its very substance is in the nature of a sign; but there is no sign unless it has an external esse.[345] Hence the above theologians appear to err not only by excess in respect of the continuation of the sacrifice in heaven, but also and no less harmfully by defect in respect of the sacrificial character of the Redemption itself.

The French school on the other hand maintained that some kind of external offering of the Body of Christ is made perpetually in heaven. Thus in the compilation L'idee du Sacerdoce et du Sacrifice de J-C: (first part, parag. 3, n. 5, p. 37-38) a follower of Pere de Condren writes: "What can He have to offer but what He offered once on earth, that is to say, the Victim of His own Body, the offering of which He renews and continues in heaven forever? The offering of Jesus Christ has not been so consummated and finished on earth, that it is no longer made in heaven; on the contrary, it only began here below, in order to be continued in heaven, where we find the perfection of sacrifice." [Jesus Christ] only made the first offering of Himself here on earth, in order to make a second of Himself in heaven for the sins of men." (ibid. n. 8, p. 43). "Besides the first offering which Jesus Christ made of Himself here on earth unto death, to transfer to Himself and Himself to carry the penalty of our iniquities, we must still admit a second, which was made on the Ascension into heaven, and which He by Himself continues there forever .... This oblation is, as it were, a commemoration of His death, accompanied by the sacerdotal prayer by which, as Pontiff of the true goods to come and as minister of the heavenly. sanctuary, He prays God that satisfaction be imputed to us and applied for the remission of our offences, and for our reconciliation with Him." (ibid., n. 9, 45-56). A little further on however, the author appears to amend and prune His words (ibid., n. 13, p. 50-52). Dom Olier similarly (Explications des ceremonies de la grand'messe de paroisse, Paris, 1858, p. 11-14, Cf. Lepin p. 201) "There is a sacrifice in paradise, which at the same time is offered on earth, since the victim who presents Himself here is borne upon the altar of heaven; and it differs in this only that here He presents Himself under veils and symbols, and there He is offered without any veil. More explicitly even than His two patrons Dom Lepin says: "From the Soul of Christ in fact there arises unceasingly to His Father, the infinite homage of His reparative adoration .... But Jesus Christ does not content Himself with this interior homage. He continues forever in heaven as paying the dues of religion for all creation, and as Mediator for man, to support His interior sentiment of religion on the basis of an outward and sensible oblation of His sacred Body." (L'idee du sacrifice dans la religion chretienne, 1897, p. 187).

These same writers either add to this offering, or they identify with it some kind of destruction or annihilation of Christ going on forever in heaven. Thus Lepin (loc. cit.) : "Doubtless the humanity of the Saviour is no longer annihilated by humiliations and mortality; His Body is no longer immolated under the blows and the torments of death: the time of actual expiation is no more. But His holy humanity continues to annihilate itself in the devouring fire of the divine glory" (op. cit., p. 187, compare p. 158159).[346] Before Lepin, Dom Olier had said: "Not content with being immolated on Calvary and giving up His life there, seeing that there still remained something of the weak nature which He received from His Mother, He willed to consume it whole on the day of His Resurrection. Thus it is that He carries religion to the highest point to which it can go; for He does not sacrifice a portion of Himself only, He offers Himself in a manner so entire and so perfect, that there is nothing of Him left which is not consumed in the glory of His Father, and annihilated, so to speak, in that devouring fire of which it is said: Our God is a consuming fire. Perfect then was the religion of Jesus Christ, who annihilated His whole self in His Father (Traite des saints Ordres, part. 3 ch. 5. Paris 1856).

Pere de Condren himself is even more daring. He pictures the celestial Christ to be in some kind of death or immolation, so to speak: "In order to understand how Christ is in a state of death in heaven .... it must be borne in mind that death is the privation of the present life; that when Jesus Christ rose from the dead, He remained in the privation of this same mortal and passible life (seeing that He then received another life—immortal, impassible, glorious), and that consequently He is and will be eternally in the privation of the present life, and consequently also in some manner in the state of death" (op. cit., part. 2, n. 26; compare part 3, n. 37, Perfection de l immolation et de l'inflammation dans le ciel, p. 231-235)

We can see well enough why these writers were led to evolve some kind of destruction. For since they would not allow that that formal oblation which they attributed to Christ should be made in heaven, as ours is made on earth, by some sacrament or sign of immolation already past (seeing that sacraments are excluded from heaven); and since without immolation, there could not be sacrifice (Lepin, op. cit., p. 61-65. Condren, part 2, n. I and 2, p. 53-57) : they were forced to the conclusion that Christ was offered in heaven by some kind of new immolation or destruction: and this, since destruction of His glory is impossible, had to be destruction by His glory. In all this, apart from the false notion of a continued formal offering, which we have shown to be untenable, these theologians are deluded in the identity they have invented between the character of immolation (or destruction) and the glorification or consummation of the Victim. For glorification has in no sense the character of immolation, nor consummation the character of destruction; rather it implies the accretion of ultimate perfection to the Victim, and the apex of its vivification. Furthermore the change from corruptible to incorruptible, or the casting off of incorruptibility, which they falsely allege continues still in heaven, is not the work of the priest offering the sacrifice, but the work of God accepting it.[347] Thus no character of immolation or offering (which must necessarily proceed from Him who offers sacrifice and not from Him to whom it is offered) attaches to this change; it has the character simply of a taking up to God, by which the Incarnation reached its ultimate effect (by virtue of the sacrifice offered). Hence it is said: This day I have begotten thee. For this was the day of birth not of death, of increase not of detriment; the day which the Lord hath made, taking the gift to Himself; not the day which the liturgus made, still further destroying the victim.

Thomassinus in a manner may be listed with this school; more than once He overstresses the concept of a heavenly offering: "A permanent not an intermittent victim Christ did not offer, but He does [now] offer (op. cit., 1. 10, C. II, n. 10);in the Resurrection He sees a kind of slaying and immolation: "Sacred Scripture has given names to the Resurrection which present to us every appearance of sacrifice. For it is called regeneration. But is it possible for one to be born again and regenerated without the destruction and the slaying of the former substance? Evidently one who is born again becomes un-born,[348] one who is born again dies, one who rises again is slain .... Change of any kind is death .... ; hence the greatest and the most absolute change, such as is wrought by the Resurrection, is likewise the greatest and the most absolute death .... Sacrifice of any kind is a change of the victim; there are two kinds of change, one of decrease, the other of increase, .... the fullest possible change of the whole man is made by the Resurrection, a change by which only defectibility decreases, one by which the soul advances, and the body advances to a form or perfection ineffably nobler than the former. By this therefore the sacrifice will be more pleasing and more appropriate to God" (ibid., c. 14, n. 9).[349]

The common objection against both these conflicting schools, and it is unanswerable,[350] is as follows: either this sacrificial action, which according to both schools continues on forever, is part of the sacrificial work by which Christ proposed to merit our Redemption, or it is separate from it, being another sacrificial offering made by Christ. If it is part of the sacrifice of our Redemption, we are faced with the calamitous conclusion that we are not yet redeemed, for the simple reason that our redemption is not yet completed (compare Renz, op. cit., p. 404); if it is separate from it, then notwithstanding the all-sufficiency of the one offering of Christ, so insistently stressed in the Epistle to the Hebrews, to that one offering we must add another, also made by Christ Himself,—if indeed we must not even substitute this other for it, which is unthinkable.[351] In support of such theories it may not be objected that the Eucharistic offering itself is by all Catholics super added to the offering of Christ Himself on earth, for, as will be shown later, when Christ offers the Eucharistic sacrifice through us, His oblative action is not new. What is new is our own present action, when, in the Mass, as members of Christ, we partake of the offering with which Christ our Head offered once and forever the Victim of His own Body and Blood. Hence there is no parity between the offering of the Mass and a new heavenly offering on the part of Christ.[352]

We therefore reject the teaching of these two schools and follow a middle course. We say that there is no formal continuation or renewal of the active offering of Christ in heaven; but that there is a virtual duration of that active offering, consisting in this: that by virtue of His offering, one in time and valid for eternity—because since Christ gives irrevocably, God accepts eternally—[353] Christ remains forever Theothyte—sacred to God.[354]

Hence we see how we can offer Christ in the sacrament as our Victim. For in the first place, had not Christ made the active offering of Himself in the past, we could not offer Him now, because our sacerdotal power is simply a participation in, and an instrument of, the priesthood of Christ. Secondly, did not the Body of Christ immolated in the past, and the Blood shed in the past, remain sacred to God, we could not have in the sacrament a true sacrifice, for we would not have a true victim. For we cannot make Christ a victim by the sacrament really, but only symbolically;[355] in spite of the fact that He becomes truly present by the consecration. Thus in that event we should offer in the reality of the Flesh and Blood, present under the species, the likeness of a victim but not a victim. We know however that in the Mass we do offer a victim, and that our sacrificial action is sacramental or representative, in such manner however as to be real. How is this if not because in the sacramental immolation we really offer Christ in a sensible manner (i. e. under the species) as one who (in virtue of His own offering of Himself to the immolation of the Passion) abides as sacred to God for all eternity? This is not to make Christ a victim, but to make of the Victim of our High Priest the Victim of His people, whom Christ has commissioned to be priests to God and the Father; He who is Victim does not need to be made Victim; but He who is His own Victim is made ours, as will be explained in its proper place.[356]


Endnotes:

1The first title of the book is: Didascaliae Apostolorum Fragmenta Veronensia Latina. Accedunt Canonum qui dicuntur Apostolorum et Aegyptiorum Reliquiae. What we say here refers only to that part of the Reliquiae from page 101, l. 31, to the end of the book. The Latin version only we call the Apostolike paradisos, or it will be under the name of Hippolytus.

2Many modern theologians think that in sacrifice as latreutic, it is God as the Author of life and death that is primarily worshipped. Their argument is that in order to acknowledge the supreme dominion of God, man (as far as rested with himself) would be bound to destroy himself, and to hand himself over to death; however, He is not allowed to do this, and so He substitutes for himself other things, animate or inanimate, to be destroyed in God's honour. Thus Lugo (De sacrament. euchar., disp. 19, sect. 1, n. 5) : "Sacrifice is a protestation whereby man acknowledges that He has His whole being from God, and hence it is meet that this same being and this same life, should be consumed and destroyed in His honour and worship. This is not lawful as a rule, hence the life or the being of some other thing is offered by us in place of our own life, as a protestation that we should offer our own life in the same way, were it lawful and fitting. " According to this explanation, sacrifice as latreutic would not signify something of itself perfecting man, but rather reducing Him to a lower condition. However, this view is not in accord with reason because, save where there has been commission of sin, no infliction of evil has that actual intrinsic perfecting character, which must be inherent in every virtue—and religion, as part of justice, is one of the moral virtues. Nor has this view the support of patristic authority. Eusebius of Caesarea (Demonstr. evangel. 1. 1, c. 10. P.L. 84-85) is sometimes appealed to—unjustifiably—as favouring this meaning. In the passage in question Eusebius is speaking of sacrifice, not only as latreutic and eucharistic, but also as propitiatory and expiatory, and it is to sacrifice as latreutic that this explanation pertains; for, as we shall see, the punishment of death, not only temporal but also eternal, is due to man for sin, and for this punishment there may be substituted the death or the slaying of another living thing. Following St Thomas, therefore, we shall explain latreutic sacrifice, not as a diminution but as an enrichment of man's life, for worship in external sensible forms is required by the nature of men, not that by loss of life or existence they may be further removed from God who is a Subsistent Being and the plenitude of life, but because "by acts of this kind [sacrifice] WE COME NEARER TO GOD" (3 C. G., 119, par. 3). In the solution of this question, therefore, we must first of all look to God as our END, or as the highest Goodness, perfecting all things. See in Zacharias Pasqualigo, De sacrificio novae legis, quaest. 6, n. 5, Rome 1707, t. 1, p. 6, a sharp criticism of the teaching of Lugo upon the desire to destroy ourselves in honour of God.

3Like other duties, the duty of latria is referred back ultimately, not to the divine omnipotence whereby God keeps all things in being, but to the absolute GOODNESS and LOVABLENESS which calls all things to itself, demanding in its own right all love, so that should a person not seek after God, He turns His back on good and inclines to evil. Indeed the question arises, why, even prior to the divine will intervening, and freely decreeing any law, we must be ready to obey the divine will, should it issue a command. The reply is: God is Goodness itself, of itself worthy of love and super-love. The foundation of all duty, therefore, is the worthiness OF THE DIVINE GOODNESS. But lovableness in God is itself love (God being a pure act of love, so not moved to love, being Himself love) hence the primary foundation of all obligation is the will—not free but natural and necessary—whereby God wills Himself, or loves His own goodness. Nevertheless, the ultimate and primary reason of latria, just as of all the other duties, is not to be sought in the agents themselves, but in the end intended by the agent. For the end which is in view is the first cause and the key to the whole moral order. We have the same in the domestic and political order. All dependence originates in the demands of the COMMON GOOD, and He on whom the care and solicitude for the common good properly falls is by that very fact in command.

4Clearer still, perhaps, are the words of the holy Doctor in Ps. 37, 3: 'The Lord desired those things to be offered to Himself, not on account of their intrinsic properties, because He Himself said: Shall I eat of the flesh of bulls? BUT IN ORDER THAT WE MAY KNOW Him AS THE SOURCE OF ALL OUR GOODS, AND AS THE END UNTO WHICH ALL THINGS ARE TO BE REFERRED, and so it is unlawful to offer sacrifice to any one but God. For God is the end and we can add nothing to Him: hence we must give glory to Him, so that all that we do, we do for His glory. "

5'"To be more closely united with God, and to be more generous with Him, is to dedicate one's whole self unswervingly to the divine service" (ibid. Declaratio T). Here the Saint has in mind dedication by the vows of religion. Later in this work we shall speak of the analogy between the vows of religion and the sacrifice.

6It is only on these grounds, and indeed only in social—that is domestic or public-worship that a legitimate minister (one constituted by law) or a legitimately instituted rite could be demanded by the natural law. But under the present dispensation we are not justified or accepted by God unless we enter into the society of the body of Christ which is the Church; Vasquez therefore very rightly says: "Although in the written law, and indeed in most nations, special signs were instituted as distinguishing marks of all sacrifices, and also special men were appointed for adoration and other religious rites; nevertheless OF ITS OWN NATURE SACRIFICE DOES NOT POSTULATE: THESE TWO THINGS, because according to the natural law by which sacrifice was introduced it would be lawful for any one to honour God with this kind of worship also, and hence to select for himself any sign fitting in itself for the worship of God in this way—especially were man not to dwell after the manner of His kind in towns or cities, but each one by himself; as long as no human or divine law were opposed to this legitimate freedom of the natural law, any individual could offer sacrifice by any sign whatever appropriate for sacrifice, and for this reason real sacrifice would have been possible without any public institution" (in 3am pem disp. 220 C. 3, n. 20). In the treatise De Eucharistia (disp. 675, sect. 3) and passim in His De Incarnatione (part 1, disp. 645, sect. 1, n. 1), Suarez discusses this in the same sense and at some length. St Thomas also favours this view where He says that before the Law '"certain ceremonies were appointed, not actually on the authority of any particular law, but simply in accord with man's will and His devotion when showing honour to God" (1-2, 102, 1. C.). And again: "Before the Law the ancients offered sacrifices with a certain devotion of their own will, and as seemed fitting to them, in order to make protestation, that in the things which they had received from God, and which in divine reverence they used to offer, they were doing honour to God, the beginning and the end of all things" (ibid. q. 1m). But for social worship, the representative of the commonweal must of necessity have public authority

7It might be questioned whether sacrifice would be required in every condition of human nature. St Augustine apparently holds that in the primeval state of innocence and happiness there would be no place for exterior sacrifice. He writes (Civ. Dei, 26-27. P.L. 41, 700-701) : "We must speak on the interpretation of the saying as in the years that are past and the days that are gone. It is quite possible that reference is here made to the time when the first men were in paradise. For then they offered THEMSELVES to God pure and clean from any defilement of sin, as clean victims"—that is to say, without the assistance of signs. St Thomas agrees with St Augustine, for while including sacrifice among the sacraments (4 D 2, 1, 3, c, fi), He excludes the sacraments from the state of original innocence (3 S. 61, 2). However, there are theologians who say that sacrifices were appropriate and even necessary in the state of original innocence. Suarez (De sacramentis in genere, disp. 3, sect. 3, n. 4) is probably one of them. He upholds the appropriateness of sacraments in the state of original innocence by arguments which can be employed equally as well to show the utility of sacrifices. Vasquez (in 3am pem, disp. 130, c. 1, n. 4), though without giving names, speaks of some of His contemporaries who said that Adam and Eve and their children, had they remained in innocence, would have been bound to offer sacrifices to God. Billuart explicitly supports this teaching of the necessity of sacrifice in the state of original innocence (in 3 S. 61, 2, in reply to objection 3m). However, we follow St Augustine and St Thomas. We think that IN THE STATE OF PRIMEVAL ELEVATION, because of the complete sway of the spirit over the body, sacrifice would not have been necessary. BUT IN A STATE OF PURE GUILTLESS NATURE (and our present state, considering merely natural conditions, is far lower than that, as will be shown in the treatise De gratia), it is very likely that latreutic sacrifice would have been necessary or at least appropriate, because of the greater mingling of the spirit with the senses in such state.

8Compare Lagrange: "In sacrifice we always meet with the idea of offering .... . It is the one concept which unites the bloody and the bloodless sacrifices" (Etudes sur les religions semitiques, 1st ed. 1903, p. 249). We find the same substantially in the second edition, 1905, pages 266 and 270.

It is difficult to understand how Christians can entertain any doubt on this matter. Apart from the testimony of the Old Testament, we have the authority of Christ Himself: If therefore thou offerest thy gift at the altar, etc. (Matth., V, 23). For whether is the greater, the gift, or the altar which sanctifies the gift? (Matth., XXIII, 19); Offer the gift which Moses commanded (Matth., VIII, 4); also the authority of the Apostle: Every high priest is ordained .... that He may offer up gifts .... (Hebr., VI, I); He is appointed to offer up gifts and sacrifices .... there would be others who would offer up gifts according to the law (Hebr., VIII, 3-4, compare IX, 9 and XI, 4). In every one of these passages from the New Testament, sacrifices are referred to, and the Greek word doron is always used for donum or munus. Even from the time of Clement of Rome, it is the same with the Fathers, also with every one of the liturgies. In the liturgies, dona et munera are gifts and presents (see below, later in this work).

9Cassian (Collat. 8, c. 23. P.L. 49, 763) thought, and Suarez (De Religione, 1. 1, c. 3, n. 4) agrees with Him, that these men offered sacrifice, led by the natural law alone. Renz (Die Geschichte des Messopferbegriffs, t. 1, p. 20-27) and Grimal in our own time (Le Sacerdoce et le sacrifice de N. S.J. C., p. 14) think that they were led by revealed law. Chrysostom (Hom. 18 in Genes. n. 5. P.G. 53, 155) declared that they were instructed by the authority both of the natural conscience and wisdom given from above, a view which appears to have the favour of the Epistle to the Hebrews, XI, 4. The author of the Didascalia said that they were not bound by any law in the matter, natural or revealed (c. 16, F. D. 1, 350)

10This is why ancient peoples commonly looked upon sacrifices as banquets prepared for God. That they did so is a well-attested fact in the history of religions. Here I should like to make one point clear: if we have occasion to refer to the history of religions at any time in the course of this work, it must be understood that we are not basing our teaching concerning sacrifice on the history of religions. Our doctrine is founded principally on the revelation contained in the sacred writings, and also on reason, whose province it is to make clear the essentials of sacrifice, such essentials '"as the nature of man requires" (Trent sess. 22, C. 1). On the other hand, the history of religions is in a state of flux, and with regard to prehistoric conditions, it can offer us no more than conjecture. Accordingly of itself the history of religions gives no solid foundations to build on (cf. G. Foucart, Histoire des religions et methode comparative, 1912, Introduction, particularly p. xclx, cxlv, clx). At the same time, where real facts of history, suitable for the illustration of our teaching, are available, we shall freely draw on them. However, in this connexion we must distinguish very carefully between historical facts and the interpretation superimposed on those facts by historians themselves. For example, it seems to be fact that the Egyptian sacrifices, from 4000 years before the death of Christ onwards, were banquets prepared and offered to a divinity, as G. Foucart (op. cit., p. 138 foll.) and many others before Him have shown. But that the offering of these banquets had, even in the minds of the more cultured Egyptians, a purely realistic meaning exclusive of all symbolism is not a matter of fact but of the author's interpretation. It seems to me that the words of M. J. Lagrange, O.P. (Etudes sur les Religions semitiques, 1903, p. 266-267), on the Semitic peoples, equally apply to the Egyptians, and others as well: "If sacrifice were only a culinary proceeding to feast the gods, it would have vanished immediately a less abject idea of the gods was conceived .... whether there is question here of a gift or of food prepared for the gods, we must assign a large part in it to symbolism. " In the second edition, His words are possibly not so trenchant: "If sacrifice were only a culinary proceeding to feast the gods, it would never have found a place in religion" (1905, p. 267).

11Compare ibid., c. 19 and 20, and col. 297-298

12A. Dillman (Handbuch der Alttestamentlichen Theologie, 1895, p. 470-471) is helpful, when discussing the relation of the outward sign to the internal consecration according to the Law and the Prophets of the Old Testament.

13The earlier theologians very often called the sacrifice of Christ the true sacrifice par excellence as contrasted with the figures wherein it was foreshadowed. In this case the reality of the sacrifice of Christ does not by any means exclude the sign proper, or the sensible covering; it simply excludes the comparative emptiness and imperfections of the sacrifices of the Old Law, figures of the sacrifices of Christ to come. See the quotation from St Augustine in chap. III, p. 59.

14Compare Hom. 37 in evangel., n. 9. P.L. 76, 1279, speaking in praise of Cassius, Bishop of the City of Narsis: "His life was in harmony with His sacrifice. "

15On these words of Leo, Thomassinus says: "Thus the Cross was the world's altar, upon which the whole body of the faithful, drawn together from all countries of the earth and all the ages of time, were slam unto God, in the sacrament of their Head" (De Incarn. Verbi, 1. 10, c. 10). Compare also St Leo, Serm. 59, c. 5. P.L. 54, 340

16"It was God's mercy that permitted to man the substitution of blood other than His own; this was the significance of the sacrifice of animals" (Döllinger, Heidenthum und Judenthum, Regensburg, 1857, p. 208). Compare ibid., p. 209, what Döllinger has to say on the spontaneous approach of animals to the altar among the Greeks. More recently S. I. Curtiss, Ursemitische religion im Volksleben des heutigen Orients, 1903, p. 25: "The sacrifices had unquestionably a substitutive character. "

17Remember our remarks above; also compare the words of P. Smend (Lehrbuch der alttestamentlichen Religionsgeschichte, 2, 1889, p. 138-141) where He points out that among the ancients sacrifices were first of all gifts which were presented to God

18Foucart notes the necessity of the of offering as distinct from the immolation (op. cit. p. 384

19It is plain at the same time that real identity between offering and immolation has no place where immolation is the action, not of the liturgus or priest, but of another; for the offering must be the act of the liturgus or priest

20Modern writers for the most part, non-Catholic as well as Catholic, agree that among the Semites from the earliest times the pouring of blood on the consecrated altar was properly and especially chosen as a sacrificial rite. See Wellhausen, Skizzen und Vorarbeiten, drittes Heft, Reste Arabischen Heidentumes, 1887, p. 113; Robertson Smith, The Religion of the Semites, 1901, p. 338-341; Marti, Geschichte der Israelitischen Religion, 1907, p. 42-43; G. A. Barton, Encyclopedia of Religion and Ethics, s. V. Altar (Semitic), n. 1. The Egyptians touched the mouth of the idol with blood (Foucart, op. cit., p. 142 and 150). Similar rites are found among the very ancient Irish peoples (J. A. McCullagh, The Religion of the Ancient Celts, 1911, p. 237). 21If there did exist a sacrifice—at the moment we merely say "if"—in which the altar was the body of the victim and the priest was the victim himself, the offering would then consist in the priest offering His own body in sacrifice with the shedding of His own blood. Whether this is really possible, or how possible, will be discussed later in this work.

22Suarez, De Incarnatione, disp. 46, s. 1. n. 2

23Sacred writers use the word sacrifice indiscriminately either for the offering of a victim to be immolated (or immolated already), or for the immolation of a victim already offered (or to be offered), according as either element of the sacrifice is directly presented. Should it be asked which of these uses is the more appropriate and the absolutely true one, I reply: where the offering comes before the immolation, the sacrifice apparently has its proper and substantial reality rather in the immolation wherein was enacted and eventually accomplished that to which the offering was directed, so that the final issue is a concrete and perfect sacrifice. If, on the other hand, immolation had already taken place, the sacrifice would be enacted precisely by the offering.

Moreover, this very word sacrifice is frequently used in the passive sense (that is in reference to the thing acted upon), for the thing offered in sacrifice.

24See in Leviticus, III, 11 and 16, how these burnt animal portions were looked upon as a kind of food or bread for God, following the Hebrew text and the Septuagint version. Compare Robertson Smith, The Religion of the Semites, p. 338-34I, where it is explained how in the ordinary sacrifices even of the burnt offerings and holocausts, the fire was extrinsic to the essential parts of the sacrificial action, which was the slaying of the living thing (= immolation), and the sprinkling of the blood upon the altar (= the offering). When to the sacrificial action, perfected as far as man was concerned, there was added God's acceptance, this did not mean that the sacrifice was thereby completed, but that the already complete sacrifice was extrinsically consummated, having reached its intended goal. Döllinger (Heidenthum und Judenthum, 1887, p. 208) wrote very beautifully of the Greek sacrifices: "The fire was the organ of union, comparable as it was to the mouth of the deity to which the offering was brought, or to which the substance of the offering was fetched in the form of the smoke of sacrifice. "

25Theodoretus in Gen., XV, 17. P.G. 80, 173: "When it is said that at the setting of the sun, there was seen a smoking furnace and a lamp of fire [passing between the divisions of the slain animals] this was a sign THAT THE SACRIFICES WERE RECEIVED. " D. Chrysostom (in h. I. P.G. 53 and 348) and Cyril of Alexandria (Glaphyr., in Genes., l. 3, n. 4. P.G. 69, 120) interpret the passing of the fire as indicating the divinity (Cyril), and consuming the offerings (Chrysostom) as signifying (after the Chaldean manner) the oath of the divine compact, or the sanction of the agreement. From what we have said, all this leads to our own interpretation. Read Aaphrates, Demonst., 4, n. 2 and 3. P. S. part 1, tom. I, p. 131-143, on the fire encircling the sacrifices of the Patriarchs and of the Hebrews.

26In the Jewish holocausts, this more perfect or divine way of signifying acceptance reached a greater perfection than in the case of other peoples in that the fire of the Jewish sacrifices was sacred because of its origin (Levit., IX, 24, II Paral., VII, 1-3, II Mach., I, 19-22), and in the Law it was commanded to be maintained, and the use of an alien fire was forbidden (Levit., X, 1).

27I say the communication of divine gifts was appropriately SIGNIFIED by eating; but it was MERITED AND SECURED by the actual offering of the sacrifice accepted by God. Hence there was a real sacrifice (held to be adequate to its end), even when there was no partaking, such as in the pouring out of oil, in the burning of incense and the holocausts of animals. For in this case, although there was no signification of the bestowal of divine favours, yet the fact of asking God for them was held to secure a certain right to them. Yet where the nature of the sacrifice allows of partaking, as in ordinary burnt offerings, the sacrifice becomes more perfect by our consummation; but in holocausts it is more perfect by the divine consummation. The most perfect of all sacrifices, therefore, is that which is a holocaust, and which we are at the same time permitted to partake of. Such was and is that which, according to the Epistle to the Hebrews, XIII, 10-12, was burnt whole without the camp, and of which nevertheless we partake, as we shall see at length later.

28"The Godhead .... was Himself the host, in that He called His servants to His table" (Smend, op. cit., p. 140). Compare Döllinger to be cited below.

29Compare Lagrange, op. cit. 2nd ed. 1905, p. 246-264; Lesetre, art. Sacrifice, in Dictionnaire de la Bible, 5, 1314-1315.

30For a description of this manner of feasting on the sacrifices, and the significance attached to it by Eastern peoples, see in Wellhausen, Skizzen und Vorarbeiten, 1887, p. 122.

31See Wellhausen, op. cit., p. 119-123, and Döllinger, to be cited later. 32Meaning: after the act of sacrifice was intrinsically (i. e., in essence) consummated, the extrinsic consummation took place, consisting in the signification of acceptance.

33This is what Renz unsuccessfully attempted to do throughout the whole of His work (Die Geschichte des Messopferbegriffs, 1901). Against this kind of procedure, speaking of the sacrifices of the Greeks, Döllinger (op. cit., p. 209-210) had already written as follows: "They did not eat of the burnt-offerings, the sin offerings, the offerings to the dead, or of those which, made to confirm an oath or a compact, were weighted with a curse; with the rest, however, there was joined a sacrificial banquet also; the participators of these ate the roasted flesh of the animal, at them they drank of the wine which had been consecrated by libation, AND SO THEY ASSOCIATED WITH THE DIVINITY, AT WHOSE TABLE THEY ATE, AS His GUESTS, while at the same time the food sanctified by the divinity, and which they took in common, formed a close bond of union between them, so that the chief aim and the most effective bond of religious fellowship, consisted in such sacred feasts, HENCE THE FEAST AND THE SACRIFICE CAME TO BE SO ESSENTIALLY CONNECTED THAT EVEN THE NAMES OF THE TWO ACTS WERE INTERCHANGEABLE. " See also ibid., 37I-373, how it was the custom among the Persians that even in private homes, libations were first made of the wine on to the fireplace, before the cups were drunk. In reference to which Döllinger says: "So the Persians had in the home a SACRIFICE, which had for them at the same time the significance of a SACRAMENT, " etc.

The Most Reverend J. Bellord, Bishop of Milevis, proposes the banquet theory of sacrifice even in a more radical manner than Renz (although His arguments against those who maintain that destruction is necessary for sacrifice are good) in The Sacrifice of the New Law (Ecclesiastical Review, July 1905, p. 258-273), where we read: "There is no death indeed in it [the Last Supper], NOR SYMBOL OF DEATH [!] The use of the two distinct species was not a rehearsal of the blood-shedding of the next day; IT MEANT ONLY THE PROVISION OF THE TWO MATERIALS OF A COMPLETE BANQUET, food and drink .... even if the chalice had passed away after the prayer in the garden, and Jesus had not suffered death, the Last Supper would still be a full and perfect sacrifice. " Later we shall see that this is a direct denial of the teaching of the Fathers. Meantime in England, J. Wilhelm and T. Scannell (op. cit., p. 452) said: "It is altogether too gross a notion to see in the ancient sacrifices NOTHING BUT a banquet in which the gods were supposed to take part. The eating of the victim accepted by God is simply the symbol of the union with God intended by those who offer the sacrifice. "

34St. Paul was not the first to speak of the altar as a table, but as Smend well says (op. cit., p. 139) : "In the Scriptures, altar and table are interchangeable terms (Ez., 41, 22; in the book of MALACHIAS, the altar is called the table of Jahve (I, 7, 12), and again in the priestly codex, the sacrificial offerings even in bread, are called the bread of Jahve (Levit., III, II, 16, etc.). "

35Man's nature demands sacrifice, in the same sense as it demands morality, religion, public and domestic social order. But this demand of nature does not preclude aberrations. One of the consequences of original sin is that man's nature is very fallible and very weak. It is not in monsters that we seek the authentic type of genus. Similarly it is not from perversions, whether legal or moral, that we may arrive at that right order which is approved to the mind of men, however blinded, by eternal law. Thus the history of Magic will not give us the understanding of Religion among men. (Compare F. Bouvier, Magie et Magisme in Dictionnaire Apologetique, D'Ales, tom. 3, col. 61 foll.) These general remarks are necessary in view of the attitude of some present-day writers, among them Loisy (Essai historique sur le sacrifice, Paris, 1920). That He should be of their company is not surprising, for He is an atheist, and His religious philosophy has nothing in common with ours. We know that there is a God, that He is to be worshipped, that He has made Himself known to man in His creation. Loisy, on the other hand, assuming that the origin of religious worship is to be explained without God, and without the knowledge of God, makes these introductory assumptions on sacrifice in general: (1) Necessarily antecedent to the religious attitude towards divine power, as we find it recorded in history, there were practices more or less magical. To such practices the more stupid of the savage races now existent are addicted (thus Loisy assumes that degenerates are to be treated as primitives, and the corruptions of a later period referred back to a prehistoric age). (2) Sacrifice, therefore, belongs to that class of religious acts which by a "mystico-magical" power are thought to influence invisible forces. These forces are either hurtful and so to be eliminated, or useful and so to be controlled, or benevolent and so to be flattered (p. 5-10). Therefore, just as sacrifice cannot be a primitive symbol of some religious instinct, so too the offering of gifts can have no place among the primeval elements of a sacrificial rite, for such offering of gifts would imply a personal divinity. "It seems impossible to derive the whole economy of sacrifice from the ritual gift, for we do not find in the origin of religions the idea of personal gods with whom we could hold converse by tribute and prayer, but of forces scarcely personified, we might say scarcely conceived, which one controls by virtue of ritual action', (p. 36). Assertions of this kind have no proof whatever in facts. They are merely a priori statements, which govern the interpretation of facts (and govern their interpretation pretty cavalierly as when from a great number of things widely dissimilar, one is treated as the origin of another, different from it and even contrary in type, of higher nobility than its supposed origin) : so much so that the whole system, based on such foundation, is merely an explanatory hypothesis, as valid or invalid as the philosophy—evolutionist materialism—on which the hypothesis rests. The application of the theory to the Scripture teaching of the expiatory death of Christ, and also to the ecclesiastical sacrifice of the Eucharist, which runs through the whole work, necessarily postulates that Christ did not actually offer up His death for us, that this offering was a mere figment of the imagination of St Paul, which He attributed to Christ; Christ, therefore, did not institute a commemoration of His death to be celebrated by us, but a commemorative rite was attached to an originally less elaborate supper of the early Christians. For it is on this supposition only that the Mass, looked upon as a mystical commemoration of some kind of MYTHICAL offering (p. 53, 72, 87, 116, 125, 305-306, 417, 526-528, etc.), can be assimilated to the "mysteries" in which the pagans represented their MYTHS, and so reduced along with these mysteries, to the primeval magic of religion. For this Pauline origin of our sacrifice, and the consequent exclusion of any offering by our Lord, necessary as it is to Loisy's theory, is contrary to historical fact, as will be shown later. Thus the mystery of faith, by reason of its historical institution, is an enduring bulwark against those who attack the transcendent character of Christianity.

36Isa., LIII, 1-13, with Acts, VIII, 32-35, 1 Peter, II, 24, Mark, X, 45, Matth., XX, 28, 1 Peter, 18-19, Apoc., V, 9, Eph., 1, 7, I Tim., II, 6, Tit., II, 14, Hebr., IX 12

37Such is the sense of the words made sin for us in the Douay version, according to Augustine, Ep. 140, C. 29, n. 73; Enchirid., C. I, 41; Contra Maximin., I, c. 2; Contra duas epist. Pelagian., 1. 3, c. 6. P.L. 33, 570; 42, 744; 44, 600. Cyril Alex., in h. I. and many other interpreters and exegetes, even Rationalists; Chrysostom tin h. I. P.G. 61, 477 foll.), Cornely (in h. I) and Grimm, Lexicon Graeco-Latinum, s. V. (Gr.) hamartia , agree with Him.

38M. d'Herbigny, R. S. R., t. I, p. 417 foll. and 450 foll., sums up for this date with great probability

39Thus Epiphanius: "We believe without the shadow of doubt that the Son is truly the Son of the Father [i. e., born of the substance of the Father, not made from nothing], and as such is adored by those who desire to attain to eternal life, but He was also made Priest, because He offered Himself to the Father in His own Body on behalf of the human race. Fulfilling the office of the priesthood for all mankind, He, Priest and Victim, offered Himself" (loc. cit.). Thus Cyril: "If any one says that it is not the Word which is from God, made our Priest and our Apostle, after the Word was made flesh and a Man like unto us, but another than the Word, of different species, born of a woman; or if any one says that He offered Himself an oblation for Himself, and not rather for us alone .... A.S." (Anathematism. 10, ad calcem epist., 17. P.G. 71, 121). Thus Theodoretus: "If therefore to offer gifts is the proper office of priests, and as Man Christ is called Priest, and moreover He offered no other victim than His own Body, therefore Christ the Lord had a body" (loc. cit.). Compare Petavius, De Incarnatione, 12, 11, and Cardinal Franzelin, De Verbo Incarnato, 5, 516

40Compare Billuart, De Incarn. dissert., 19, a. 4; Franzelin, De Verbo Incarnato, Th. 51.

41This truly Catholic writer softened His teachings in a later work, Le Dogme de la Redemption. (Etude theologique, 1914, p. 202-216 and 301-308.) Meantime we are most grateful to the author for opening up questions which must be answered as a matter of course. When we attribute to our Redeemer an act of sacrifice in the true sense of the word, we should be willing not only to pay the homage of our faith, but also as a theologian should, to give reasons for that faith. In other words, we must examine and find out how every element of a true and properly so called sacrifice (that is, liturgical and ritual), is found in the Sacrifice of the Redeemer, including the actual offering of the priest. We shall attempt this in the present and the following theses up to the ninth, which should be compared with the thirteenth. See p. XVII.

42Nicholas Cabasilas, the greatest of the Greek theologians of the Middle Ages, justly remarked that it is only after the Cross, that we are properly members of Christ. "For only after the Cross are we knit to Christ. Before His death we had no communion with Him. For He was the Son and He was the Beloved; we were criminals, slaves and enemies. But after His death when the price was paid, the chain of the devil broken, we received the liberty and adoption of children, and became members of that blessed Head" (De vita in Christo, I. P.G. 150, 520). The word "after" is used, of course, of logical posteriority.

43Because He did not assume the angelic nature, hence He is not the Priest or the Pontiff or the Liturgus of the angels. As Man, however, He IS THE BORN PRIEST of men.

44"Note that speaking strictly, the person who offers the sacrifice in thanksgiving for benefits conferred on himself or on another, does not on that account offer the sacrifice for Him on whom the benefits were conferred, because to offer the sacrifice for another is to offer in His favour and benefit" (Lugo, De Eucharistia, disp. 19, sect. 10). For of itself thanksgiving does not envisage the benefit of the person for whom thanks are made, but rather (if this were possible) the benefit of Him to whom gratitude is shown.

45Vasquez writes well: "Christ profited nothing in His death by way of the sacrifice, but only by reason of devotion, as the holy Doctor said above, q. 22, a. 4, ad 2m, and thus Christ did not receive in Himself the effect of His Priesthood, rather He communicated it to others, because as the same holy Doctor taught in the body of the article cited by us, Christ did not offer Himself to the Father for Himself, but for others. The sacrifice of His death, however, is said to have profited Him, because it was a work of merit for Him; now the extent of the merit must be measured by the devotion of Him who merits" (in 3 m partem. disp. 231, c. 3, n. 11).

46"If anyone says that Christ offered the sacrifice for Himself, and not for us only (FOR He WHO ABSOLUTELY KNEW NO SIN HAD NO NEED OF SACRIFICE) let Him be anathema (loc. cit., P.G. 71, 120).

47The rectitude of a soul in innocence at its origin connaturally implies (in the providence of God) the subordination of the lower elements in man to His reason (compare St. Thomas, 2 D. 30, l. I. et 3m etc.). Hence rebel or sinful flesh is not of itself capable of subjecting the soul in a connatural manner, 50 as to turn it to God. Therefore where procreation takes place in the manner which connaturally propagates concupiscence, the debt of original sin is propagated there also, so much so that it is only by a privilege that the propagation of sin and concupiscence could in such case be prevented. Now on the part of her parents the propagation of Mary was subject to the common law, and according to this law there exists the concupiscence habitual to conception, and this is not only present in the parents as a material consequence or accompaniment of original sin, but is of a nature to produce a like effect in the progeny (unless prevented). And so the debt of original sin was contracted by Mary, and it was only by a privilege that she was free from sin as well as from concupiscence. BUT ONCE GIVEN THE VIRGINAL M MATERNITY OF MARY, there was no place in the procreation of Christ for concupiscence as inherited from a sinful or guilty stock. Therefore the human nature of Christ (even prescinding from the hypostatic union) was of necessity clean, without the need of any special privilege-not freed, nor preserved, but free (compare I-2 S. 82 and 83). This in substance was taught repeatedly by St. Augustine: "For the Virgin had not conceived by the concupiscence of the flesh: AND FOR THIS REASON the flesh was propagated in Him without the propagation of sin" (Op. imperf. c. Jul., 4, 79, P.L. 44, 1384). "He offered Himself a clean victim .... For the flesh which He received from us, this Flesh He offered. But whence did He receive it? From the womb of the Virgin Mary, in order to offer it clean, for the unclean" (Ennar. in Ps. CXLIX, 2, n. 6. P.L. 36, 1953). Compare Didymus Al. (Contra Manichaeos, 8. P.G. 39, 1096) : "If Christ received His Body in the ordinary way of propagation, and not a body formed outside the ordinary course, He too would be considered as subject to that sin which every child of Adam also contracts. "

48Should it be asked how a mere creature can never completely make satisfaction to God. for sin, whereas the Man-God could, the answer lies in the difference of love in the two cases. Through sin whereby we turn away from our last end, we reject in practice, as far as it is possible for us, the supreme amiability of God, and therefore so to speak, tear out of our hearts and reject all the love which every created and creatable creature owes to the great goodness of God. Now no mere creature can give to God all the created and creatable love wherewith He can be loved. Therefore no mere creature can make adequate compensation for the evil we have done in rejecting this love as far as in us lay. The one Incarnate God alone in His created nature can do this. For He necessarily possesses the highest perfection of created love, not only relatively to any other created love, but also absolutely by comparison to any creatable love whatever. Hence God Himself alone can give the love that we have excluded by sin.

49Moreover, the fact that Christ was at the same time Priest and Victim, Compare 3 S. 46, 6 in the body of the article, under the title 4 and 6m.

50Note the words of St Francis de Sales (Traite de l'amour Dieu 1. 10 c. 10) : "O God, who could tell which of the two loves was the greater, that of Abraham who to please God immolated His own son, or that of the son who to please God submits to immolation, and permits himself to be bound and stretched on the wood, and like a gentle lamb patiently wait the death blow from His Father? I esteem the father more highly for His longanimity, but then again I boldly grant the prize to the son for magnanimity. "

51J. Pohle (Soteriology, authorized English version by A. Preuss, 1914, p. III), therefore wisely remarks: "that the death of Christ was a true sacrifice, and that He Himself was a true Priest. It is these facts which give to the Redemption its sacerdotal and hieratic stamp, and furnish US WITH A KEY TO THE PHILOSOPHY OF THE ATONEMENT. " Hence later on (p. 115) He insists on safeguarding the dogmatic character of this fact. 52Scotus is opposed to their teaching. He says (assuming that by a miracle His glory did not redound to His Body), the Soul of Christ could not have kept the Body from the Passion and death (3 D. 16, 2). But, He does not seem to take into account the condition of a soul free from the debt of sin

53It is worth while noting what the real bearing of the passage from Eusebius is: the words do not refer to a sacrificial gift at all. He merely wanted to show (1) the truth of the death of the Lord; (2) particularly the manner of His death. According to Eusebius (and His views were not orthodox) the manner of His death was this: the assuming nature was separated from the Body. Immediately before the expression quoted, He had said: "Have you learned from the Lord the manner in which the Lord died?" Still further up (540-541) He had advanced the same argument: "What therefore follows: Did not Christ die for us? How did He die? Father, into thy hands I commend my spirit. The spirit departed, the Body remained without the spirit. Did not Christ die therefore?"

Hence the conclusion of Eusebius is that He died, and that He died because the spirit departed from the assumed Body. He adds this as a confirmation: that the Lord did not offer that spirit, which dying He commended to the Father to be returned to heaven. He offered the Body only, for now that the spirit had gone, only the Body could be said to be dead: "For He offered whatever was corporeal in Him. " To sum up: His death and the nature of His death is proved, and what we know otherwise from our faith, is verified: that the Flesh, not the divine spirit, was sacrificed by the Lord. Hence even Eusebius did not think that this commendation of the divine spirit was an offering. For if it were, it would not be the offering of that spirit which is commended to God, but then according to Eusebius, the spirit commended to God is the divine, not the human spirit. But the divine spirit is not offered to God, only the human Body. Therefore in the commendation there is no offering.

54Note that to give oneself to death (like soldiers and martyrs), and to give oneself to death by way of sacrifice to God, are not identical: for sacrifice includes the concept OF GIFT PRESENTED TO GOD (as a sign of internal dedication). This gift concept is intrinsic to all true sacrifices, without it a sacrifice can neither be, nor be known to be.

55Meantime it seems scarcely worth the trouble to discuss the teaching found at times in certain books of devotion: that Christ sacerdotally offered Himself throughout His whole life, from the moment when entering into the world He said: Sacrifice and oblation thou wouldst not: but a body thou hast fitted to me. Holocausts do not please me: and then I said: Behold I come (Hebr., X, 5-7 and Ps., 40, 7-9) Because in the first place this state of mind was invisible in Christ; indeed, in His early years absolutely invisible. By it secondly was verified the affective, indeed, but not the effective desire of offering Himself. In other words, Christ did then offer the sacrifice in affection and will, but not in actual fact; enunciating, so to speak, a future thing, not a present act. Hence there was no actual giving and dedication, though it was intended that it should be done at some future time. No actual contract was made with God for the expiation of sin, it was desired merely, and (if an out- ward intimation was at any time given) foretold. But such an offering is not sufficient for true and proper sacrifice; an actual giving de praesenti is required, a giving that is plain to the senses, and not in words only but in action.

56To this direct testimony indirect testimony will be added later in this work from OUR OWN eucharistic celebration. Once proved that it is a sacrifice, from the fact that in it Christ made Victim from His passion is offered, then we will reason backwards with due respect to the different periods of time, that in the Supper Christ had offered His Body to be immolated in the Passion. For we do what He did, apart from the difference of time in regard to the Passion. Then Christ was not immolated yet, He was to be immolated. Now, in the Mass, He is not to be immolated, He has been immolated.

57Moses Bar Kepha (IX s.) aptly proves the freedom of His will from the thanksgiving, in the Explanatio mysteriorum oblationis, edited and translated into English by R. H. Connolly and H. W. Codrington (Two Commentaries on the Jacobite Liturgy, Oxford, 1913, p. 52).

"By that He gave thanks, He declared to us .... that He assents to the will of the Father—for thanksgiving is assent—as though He said: I assent to thy will, O Father, that I receive suffering and death for the human race. "

58Renz (op. cit., t. 1, p. 120-141), in His desire to deny to the Supper any sacrificial offering whatever, tries to weaken the force of the present participle (didomenon, which is given) in opposition to the generally received teaching of our apologists, holding that the sacramental words must refer to the real immolation in blood of the Passion. Although absolutely upholding the reality of the sacrificial offering made in the Supper, Lebreton (art. Eucharistie in the Dictionnaire Apologetique, col. 1564) himself nevertheless denies the force of the argument drawn from the present participle, referring back to St John Chrysostom (in Matth., hom. 82. P.G. 58. 738 foll.), who, when speaking of the giving and the shedding, refers all to the Passion. It appears to me, however, that the fact of the words having in view the Passion, is no argument against the meaning of the words in the present tense, because they express the present offering to the future Passion, as will be proved directly in the fourth statement; for the words "is given" must be interpreted "is given to death, " as in Gal., I, 4 and Rom., VIII, 32 (Compare Holtzmann, Handcommentar zum Neuen Testament, Die Synoptiker, 3, 409). Wherefore as the words "which shall be shed for you" imply a present representative immolation, so they denote a present deputation to a future real immolation. And thus the words both look to the Passion, and express something done in the Supper.

59However, Father Knabenbauer (Commentarius secundum Lucam in h. 1., p. 574575) considers that in the original Greek the word corresponding to "which is shed" (literally, "which is poured out") should be referred not to the chalice, but to the Blood. He quotes for His contention some corresponding passages in the Apocalypse where grammatical similarity is found. However, such a contention requires a looser grammatical construction, such as is found in Apocalypse, but not in the more classic Greek of St Luke. Moreover in the Apocalypse itself we find this very word poured out used directly in reference to the "vials of wrath" (Apoc., XVI, I; compare XVI, 2, 4, 8, 10). Hence the argumentation of Knabenbauer is not conclusive. However, even if His contention were valid, it would only invalidate one quite subsidiary argument.

60St Augustine appropriately on Ps., 129, 4. "Because with thee is propitiation":

"And what is this propitiation but the sacrifice? And what is the sacrifice unless it is offered for us? Innocent Blood shed, washed away the sins of the guilty. "

61I say before God, because Christ not only makes intercession to God by the words of praise and thanksgiving, but He also shows that the action which is accomplished is propitiatory.

62The word vowed ("vovere") is not used here in the classic sense wherein the victim is said to be vowed (that is, made sacred) by the offering, and made non-sacred ("devoveri"), that is desecrated ("desacrari") by the immolation.

The words of J. de Maistre, well known though they are, must not be omitted on this subject; He is speaking apropos of human sacrifices (although there is more room for doubt today in regard to the origin of human sacrifices than appeared in His time).

"It seems evident that the first human victims were those found guilty by the law; for what Caesar (De Bello Gallico, 6, 16) said of the Druids is really true of all the nations: that the punishment of guilt was somehow pleasing to the divinity. The ancients believed that every capital crime in the State became an obligation on the nation and that the criminal was consecrated (sacer) or vowed to the gods, until both the criminal and the nation were freed by the shedding of His blood.

"Hence the reason why the word 'sacer' m the Latin has a good and a bad meaning, and why the same word in the Greek signifies what is holy and what is profane; why the word anathema signifies at the same time something offered to God as a gift, and something given over to His vengeance; finally why in the Greek and in the Latin also a man or a thing were said to be desecrated (expiated), in order to express that they have been cleansed from a crime of which they have been guilty. This word 'desacrari' (to be made non-sacred) seems to be contrary to analogy, the unacquainted ear would expect 'reconsecrate' or 'sanctify'; the error, however, is only apparent, the expression is really very exact. Sacer in the ancient languages signifies what is handed over to the divinity, on any title whatever, and what is bound in such manner that punishment makes it non-sacred, expiated or freed, like religious absolution. "

"When the laws of the XII tables pronounced the sentence of death, they said: sacer esto (let Him be consecrated), that is to say, let Him be devoted; or, to express it more correctly, vowed; for, strictly speaking, the guilty were only made devoted by execution." (Eclaircissement sur les sacrifices, Ch. 2).

Here it is of interest to note that often in Virgil the victims placed on the altars are called things vowed, "Lustramurque Jovi votisque incendimus aras" (Aeneid, 3, 279); and at times the gods are said to be summoned to the "vota"—to the "vota" I say, not by the "vota"; that is, the descent of the gods or their favour is invoked upon the "vota" or victims.

We find it often in the language of the Church: both in the Fathers, like St Augustine (in Ps., 61, 27. P.L. 36, 178), "I shall pay my vows before them that fear Him-What are His vows? The sacrifice which He offered to God. " And in the Liturgies, as in the Postcommunion of the feast of the Most Holy Name of Jesus ("Almighty and eternal God, who hast created and redeemed us, look favourably on our vota").

63Rightly J. Wilhelm and T. S. Scannell, Manual of Catholic Theology, vol. 2, London, 1898, p. 456:

"We use the term mystical in reference to the mystery m which the effusion takes place; it is opposed to real and EQUIVALENT to REPRESENTATIVE, commemorative, or relative. "

Actually it strictly corresponds to the word sacramental, inasmuch as sacrament is taken strictly for some sacred sign: so that mystic immolation is immolation by sign or by sacrament.

64Rightly, therefore, both the Greek text throughout uses the present tense, and the Latin text of the Vulgate version, though retaining the present tense "which is given for you" (Luke), still declares the shedding in the future "shall be shed" (Matth., Mark, Luke). For the present tense indicates the present representative immolation wherein is made the offering to the real immolation denoted by the future tense. Hence each reading contains the truth, so that one obtains light from the other, but the Latin obtains a greater light from the Greek

65Thus St Thomas (in 2 Cor., Xl, lect. 5) on the words took bread remarks that by that action this is first of all signified: "that He freely accepted the Passion, of which this sacrament is the memorial. " Therefore, the will to submit to the Passion for us was expressed in the Supper rite.

66It should be noted how, when He is speaking of the sacrifice offered in the Supper, St. Augustine speaks absolutely of the sacrifice of Christ; not as if referring to a sacrifice other than that whereby Christ redeemed us. He is simply speaking of "the sacrifice which He offered to God" as if He had but one sacrifice. Compare Karl Adam, Die Eucharistielehre des hl. Augustin, 1908 p. 73.

67The expression of Amalarius in the Middle Ages is equivalent (De officiis ecclesiasticis, I, 1, c. 12. P.L. 105, 1023) :

"He gave thanks, because the old order was about to pass, and all things would be new. The Law did not take away sins, it punished them. ON HOLY THURSDAY Christ brought the Old Law to an end, He TOOK AWAY SIN" (compare ibid., 12 and 13). Similarly John, Bishop of Rouen (De off. eccl., P.L. 147, 49), describing the Supper:

He DECREED THAT A MYSTERY BE CELEBRATED WHEREIN THE WOUNDED BY SIN, and the weakened in virtue, WOULD BE RESTORED TO ETERNAL SALVATION, and the darkness of sin dispelled, those having true peace in their hearts, would be illumined with the light of faith. For on that day He brought the Old Law which punished sin, to an end, and instituted the first sacrifice of His Body and Blood, whereby sins are taken away. "

Thus the unity of the Supper and the Passion. The mystery of our reparation is already accomplished by Christ in the Supper. Our Redemption is brought about by the actual sacrifice of the Body and Blood of Christ. The sacrifice of the Cross, therefore, is already being enacted in the Supper.

68" 'From the morning, ' therefore, that is from the beginning of the world, death has destroyed those who lived on earth, 'until dinner time, ' that is until the time of the table. For when the time of the holy and mystic table, that is of that (table) in Christ, came to us, whereon we eat that life-giving heavenly bread, death, which up to then was terrible and insuperable, was destroyed (2 Cor., XV, 26), AS PROPITIATION WAS MADE TO GOD .... . Christ therefore, who is typified in the person of David, set us free. For seeing that the peoples of the Earth were being consumed by death, He became advocate for us with the Father: FOR He OFFERED HIMSELF FOR us, AND OF His OWN WILL SUBMITTED TO DEATH, and stayed the exterminator .... . By the threshing floor you will interpret the Church .... . Christ bought this spiritual threshing floor, the Church I repeat, for fifty sicles, that is no small price (for He gave Himself for her); and in her He built an altar. And since He is Himself the Liturgus, for He was made High Priest, He is also the Victim, He offered Himself (as in image and type of the oxen for the sacrifice), and He was made a holocaust and a pacific victim .... . The altar being built, whereon would be placed the victim and the holocaust, the destruction was stayed. For the Lord heard the cry of the earth, and the ruin was curbed. For when Christ offers Himself in sacrifice for us, death is destroyed, and destruction averted .... What was said of the altar being small in the beginning and that it later grew, points to the future progress of the Gospel in its own time, and to the earlier needs of the holy Churches, which later became greater and larger: for as the days go on, the altars are spread, other Churches are added to the former, and the faithful increase to multitudes untold; they have been redeemed by the sacrifice enacted in Christ, having Christ Himself for Liturgus and Holy Victim, and a sweet-smelling, cleansing and, as it were, wondrous altar. "

The Eucharist is undoubtedly meant here; in it both Christ offered Himself to the death of the Cross for our redemption and the Church offers the same price and pledge of our redemption in her constant ministration and offering.

69This reckoning of the triduum is also spoken of by a Syrian writer, as generally received, though He accepts the other (anonymous author of the Expositio officiorum Ecclesiae, usually attributed to George Arbela. Translation by R. H. Connolly, C. S. C. O., 91, 68).

70For the contrary opinion see Renz (op. cit., t. 1, p. 363-364).

71Next to Gregory of Nyssa comes Jacob Sarugh (X521), a Syrian writer, so well known that He was entitled Doctor; in the opinion of the latest critics, however, He was not altogether free from Monophysitism. In a Homilia in Hebdomadam sanctam (translated into English by R. H. Connolly at the end of another entitled A Homily of Mar Jacob of Sarugh on the Reception of the Holy Mysteries, Downside Review, Nov., 1908, p. 282), He says:

"While He was alive and reclining with them, they (the Apostles) ate Him, AND DEAD WHILST LIVING THEY KNOW Him TO BE, without doubting. IF He WERE NOT DEAD, THEN His BREAD WAS NOT His BODY; and if He were not alive, He would not have broken His Body and given to His Apostles .... THEY AFFIRM THAT He IS SLAIN, WHILST THEY LOOK UPON Him ALIVE AND SPEAKING .... . They drink His Blood and affirm that it is Blood, while He is alive. " That is to say, the death of Christ was essentially and to an extent really involved with the mystery of the bread and the chalice.

"They thought that yea in truth His Blood was dropping (there) .... . He IS THE DEAD WHO WHEN DEAD WAS ALIVE .... . PRIEST AND BURNT OFFERING. "

The whole explanation is in the last words: because the Priest was offering Himself in sacrifice, sacrificing His own life, presenting His death to God. In that He was offering sacrifice, He must be alive; in that He was offering sacrifice, He must be regarded as dead, that His Blood may appear to be shed, and the Victim to be present. Hence the death is anticipated throughout the Supper mystery, it is, at it were, interwoven with the Eucharist, and made available for the benefit of men.

72Note the distinction between the offering which Christ made of Himself in the Supper ("He offered Himself .... . He offered Himself to God and the Father"), while He immolates Himself sacramentally, and the real immolation in blood enacted on the Cross ("those who crucified Christ .... . He was immolated on the altar of the Cross").

73The unknown author of an old Sermo de symbolo ad catechumenos (c. 6, n. 6; in the works of St Augustine, P.L. 40, 657) bears witness to this same reckoning in the West, as fairly well known. He has no desire to nullify it.

Mediaeval writers had no hesitation in adopting this reckoning in their expositions of the liturgical customs of Holy Week. Rupert of Dietz puts to himself the question, Why is it that the Body and Blood of Our Lord is not consecrated on Good Friday, and that there is no celebration of the sacrifice throughout Holy Saturday, and it must be held over until the day of the Pasch? Were this done the three days of the death of Our Lord would be more definitely stressed. He replies that the three days of death could be reckoned from the time when Our Lord offered Himself in sacrifice in the Supper, anticipating the immolation where He was slain on the Cross by the Jews:

"The first day of the week is the third day from that immolation which was on the Cross. BUT FROM THE OTHER (the immolation of the Supper), THE SABBATH ITSELF IS THE THIRD DAY .... . THE THREE DAYS OF DEATH THEREFORE, WHICH CANNOT BE COMPLETE IN SO FAR AS He WAS SLAIN BY THE JEWS, is beautifully and reasonably transferred to the time when He WAS IMMOLATED WITH His OWN HANDS (De divinis officiis, 1. 6, c. 22. P.L. 170, 166-167).

Sicard of Cremona in His Mitrale follows Rupert, answering the same question and the same objection in shorter and more expressive words: " 'Our Lord on the day before He suffered, taking bread and the chalice, blessed and gave to His disciples, saying: This is my body, This is my chalice' (sic). IN THAT MOMENT He WAS IMMOLATED IN His OWN HANDS, to this immolation He added: 'Do this in commemoration of me. ' FROM THAT (day) therefore, which must not be omitted, seeing that it is strictly joined to the rest, FRIDAY IS THE SECOND DAY, wherein He as it were rests in the tomb. SATURDAY IS THE THIRD DAY, wherein as it were He arises from the dead" (Mitrale, 1. 6, c. 13. P.L. 213, 319).

Before them John, Bishop of Rouen, in His De officiis ecclesiasticis (P.L. 147, 52) had said the same thing; He is intricate but to the point. The gist of His words is: In the liturgy of Holy Week the day of the Supper is reckoned in the three days of the death of our Lord substituted, as it were, for the Sunday when "the burial of the Lord cannot be celebrated because of the glory of the Resurrection. " And this is done appropriately, seeing that "on the day of the Supper .... He MADE KNOWN THAT He WOULD SUFFER for all His Apostles, BECAUSE He gave to them His FLESH to eat, WHICH WAS TO SUFFER ON THE MORROW, and at the same time also His Blood, WHICH WAS TO BE SHED.

Appropriately, then, He includes the Thursday in the three days of the death of our Lord, because in the sacrament of His Passion Christ had already given to His disciples the very Flesh which was to be torn in the Passion, and the Blood which was to flow from His wounds. Those are His words at least.

74This admitted, the argument of our apologists against the sixteenth century reformers is forceful: the Supper was a sacrifice because the Body of Christ was immolated on the Cross: and thus the sacrifice commenced in the Supper was consummated on the Cross. The argument will often crop up later; for the present one example will suffice. We take it from Tilmann Smelingo (De septem sacramentis, Cologne, 1538), who simply deduces the sacrificial character of the Supper from the words of our Lord, because:

"To the disciples in the Supper under the species of bread He gave His own Body, which under its proper species He offered on the Cross; and WHAT He COMMENCED IN THE SUPPER He CONSUMMATED ON THE CROSS" (c. 5, p. 342, 343).

Again speaking of the chalice:

"It is evident that the Eucharist is a sacrament. What Christ adds: 'which shall be shed for many' or 'which shall be shed for you, as THAT AS FULFILLED ON THE CROSS, proves that it is a sacrifice" (p. 343).

75The names are: Eucharist, Gift, Food, Drink, Communion, Sacrifice, Sacrament.

76The word sacrifice is meant here in the passive sense for the victim; as we know from abundant examples throughout the Middle Ages

77See chap. V.

78To be developed in Book II

79To be developed in Book II.

80To be quoted later in this work. Possibly, however, He intended nothing else but that the Supper took place within the Passion, in the manner to be explained later. Most certainly He did not mean by the word "confectam, " destroyed or lessened.

81However, it is daily represented by us, as is clear from the letter of the distinction, and from the constant teaching of St Thomas (3 S. 83, 1). But it is one thing to be represented in image, and another to be repeated in reality. St Thomas is now treating of real repetition in the question He is answering.

82Compare Vaccari, Esichio di Gerusalemme e il suo "Commentarius in Leviticum, " in Bessarion, Jan., June, 1918, p. 8-46, p. 22 in particular. Vaccari proves conclusively that the Commentary was originally written in Greek at Jerusalem by Hesychius, presbyter.

83That is the legal lamb

84Meaning: He sacramentally slew Himself, and thereby offered Himself as the second ram; not the legal victim now, but the Victim of His own sacrifice.

85"Intelligible, " in our version of Hesychius, has the same sense as spiritual with Latin writers (compare Vaccari, p. 21). That the Flesh or the Blood of Christ was called spiritual by the Fathers will be shown later in this work

86The tone of Isaac the Armenian, junior, reflects exactly the same teaching of the oblative significance of the Supper in respect of the Passion. He is remonstrating with His people for returning to the custom of the Jewish sacrifices:

"Since Christ, the Son of God, AS SLAIN FOR us AND OFFERED HIMSELF TO GOD THE FATHER A VICTIM FOR us AND TOOK BREAD AND THE CHALICE, and said to His disciples: Do this is commemoration of me'; how would it be lawful to return to the Jewish manner of sacrifice?"

"For if the victims of cattle had anywhere been profitable to men, and reconciled them to God, and purchased the remission of sins, what was the use OF THE SLAYING OF CHRIST, WHEREBY He OFFERED HIMSELF A VICTIM FOR US, and reconciled us to God? On the contrary, it was because irrational victims were powerless to reconcile us to God, or to obtain remission of sins, then, the Son of God, OFFERING HIMSELF A VICTIM FOR US to His Father, said: 'This is my body'" (Invectiva I contra Armenos, c. 9, parag. 2. P.G. 132, 1184).

Have we not ample evidence here that Isaac has in mind the one sacrifice of Christ, the one sacrifice of the Redemption, consisting of an immolation, and that in blood, in such a way that it is nevertheless offered now, when the Eucharist is consecrated?

87Among other evidences that He is speaking of the Supper in the passage, the words WE HEARD should be noted. For in the Supper, Christ is heard to offer, He offered there by words, that is by the words of the consecration

88Rupert of Dietz appears to me to state the same doctrine. He says that Christ, High Priest in the Supper, wherein He sacramentally immolated Himself, offered Himself the Lamb to be immolated in the Passion, so that even now in the Supper He had purchased salvation for all the elect of ages past:

"Finally on the fourteenth day, towards evening, when He ate the lamb of the ancient pasch with His disciples, in that moment He THE LAMB OF THE NEW SACRIFICE ON THE POINT OF BEING CAPTURED AND LED TO BE IMMOLATED, first immolated Himself to God the Father with His own hands, taking bread and wine and by the wonderful and ineffable power of the act of sacrifice, transferring them into the sacrament of His Body and Blood. "

In the mind of Rupert, what is the relation of this sacramental immolation to the immolation in blood? He explains, adding these words:

"With His own hands, as has just been said, He THE HIGH PRIEST OFFERED His BODY AND BLOOD UNDER THE SPECIES OF BREAD (In Exod. 2, 6, P.L., 167, 613).

You see that the Lamb, before being impiously led by wicked men to be immolated has already been offered to God in a most sacred rite by the hands of the High Priest, While He is sacramentally immolated.

Rupert compares the sacrifice of Christ with the sacrifice of Abel, and describes it thus:

"On that evening of the most sacred Supper, our Lord God, Jesus Christ, Priest and Sacrifice, offered by His own hands, and accepted in the odour of sweetness, betrayed by the sacrilegious disciple, is captured by the Jewish people (His own brothers in the flesh), and, led outside the gate of the city, is crucified." (In Genes, 4, 5, P.L. 167, 330).

Such is the whole sacrifice, enacted on the Cross in blood, but bloodlessly offered in the Supper. Rupert therefore assigns the actual effects of the Cross, the Redemption namely of the human race from the beginning to the end of time, to the Supper, as oblative of the Blood to be shed from the Cross.

"The High Priest .... fulfilled His Priesthood according to the order of Melchisedech. For He brought forth bread and wine, saying: 'This is my body, this is my blood, and THUS He OFFERED HIMSELF A TRUE SACRIFICE FOR THE FAITHFUL ABRAHAM, and He blessed Him: FOR He PURCHASED THE BLESSING BY His BLOOD, that is, He PURCHASED THE RE-MISSION OF SINS FOR Him, nay also FOR ALL THE ELECT who awaited Him from the beginning of the world." (In Genes. 5, 12, P.L. 167, 378).

Very truly said, provided the Supper is linked up with the Cross in the undivided oneness of this unique sacrifice. Many more references will follow later (passim, and particularly in Th. V) from Rupert. All of them are definite and unambiguous.

Meantime it is worth noting how Gerhoh of Reichersberg links up the Supper, the agony in the garden and the Cross, as one in the holocaust of Christ. Speaking on the words of the Psalm: "May He make fat thy burnt offering, " He addresses Christ thus:

"MAY THE BURNT OFFERING OF THY IMMOLATION IN THY SUPPER, ON MOUNT OLIVET, ON THE ALTAR OF THE CROSS, be made fat for us, that its sweet richness and its rich sweetness, may so strengthen us that we who await thy revelation may obtain all grace." (Commentarius in Psalmos, part 1, Ps. XIX. 4, P.L. 193, 960). This one sacrifice of Christ He calls later "the holocaust of the new Pasch" (ibid., 962).

89"He left as a memorial of His salutary Passion, what we offer now, by His command, for when He was about to undergo His voluntary, glorious and life-giving death, on the night on which He gave Himself for the life of the world, taking bread, " etc. (B. 327).

90"When He had come, and had completed the whole economy for us, on the night on which He gave Himself, taking bread, " etc. (B. 327).

91"On that night on which He gave Himself for the life and the salvation of the world, He took bread, " etc. (Max Saxoniae Missa Syriaca Antiochena, p. 26).

92"As above in the Mass of the ninth century (B. 494; cf. Max Saxoniae Missa Graeca, p. 70).

93"On the night in which He was given up, or rather gave Himself up for the life of the world, etc." (B. 494; cf. Max Saxoniae, Missa Graeca, p. 43.) That in a number of these passages Christ is mentioned as having given Himself f or the life of the world, will be considered later, page 75 seq.

94" Later on the same text was published the Codex Sacramentorum Bergomensis, (Ad Utramque I. P. Migne Patrologiam .... . Actuarium Solesmense. Series Liturgica. Tom. 1. Veterum Ambrosianae Liturgiae Monumentorum .... Collectio. Vol. I, fasc. I, Solesmes 1900, p. 62) where there is no discrepancy of the text, except that the sentence commencing "Can we despair, " etc., is not interrogative.

95Cf. Glossa ordinaria on the same passage (P.L. 114, 652).

96The same preface for Wednesday after Low Sunday is found in the Codex Sacramentorum Bergomensis

97Ed. Wilson, p. 93 in the Secret (ibid.), we find "Receive, we beseech thee, O Lord, the victims of human REDEMPTION. " The plural "victims" following a liturgical manner of the Church indicates the twofold species of our sacrifice, that is the bread and the chalice. It is worth noting that Edmund Bishop proved lately (Liturgica Historica, 3, The earliest Roman Mass Book, Oxford, 1918, p. 61) that "The Gelasianum is substantially the Roman Mass Book of the sixth century."

98The Exodus description of the sacrifice, and the description of the same sacrifice in the Epistle to the Hebrews differ in two particulars, due in all probability to the prominence of the Eucharistic antitype in the later writer's mind. First, in the Epistle we find: He took the blood with water. In Exodus water is not mentioned. Secondly, the Epistle has: This is the blood of the testament, which the Lord hath made with you concerning these things. Referring to these words in the Epistle, Westcott says: "It is possible that the corresponding phrase at the institution (Matth. XXVI, 28) of the New Testament may have influenced the quotation."

99Quoted in Theil Dictionnaire Latin-Francais under the words ictus or ico and foedus

100On the ancient custom of ratifying an agreement with the blood of victims, see Wellhausen, Skizzen und Vorarbeiten, 3, p. 119-123; Smend, Lehrbuch der alttestamentlichen Religionsgescbichte, pp. 26-28.

101The question could arise that the sacrifice enacted in the Supper was not the actual sacrifice of the Passion but a living representation of it in the Body and Blood of the Lord. Altogether, aside from the difficulties referred to already, this view confronts us with another obstacle. The covenant would be merely represented as concluded here, and not really concluded. But when Moses said This is the blood of the testament the covenant was actually in the process of being made. Now Christ was fulfilling the figure when He said: This is the blood of the testament. Therefore the necessity that the covenant should be made was all the more compelling. Hence we conclude that the sacrifice of the Passion was not merely represented at the Supper, it was actually made.

The words of Mangenot on this matter call for comment: "This chalice filled with wine, says Jesus, is the new alliance in my Blood .... Evidently the application [of the term from Exodus] is not to the wine of the cup, the application is to the Blood contained in the blessed cup of the Eucharist (1 Cor., X. 16). It is the Blood which shall be shed on the Cross, the Blood which seals the NEW ALLIANCE of God with men CONSTITUTED BY THE SACRIFICE OF THE SAVIOUR .... The Blood of Jesus then is the blood of the alliance, the blood which seals it. Like the blood of the cattle immolated by Moses, it will be shed on the Cross, AND THIS SHEDDING WILL BE A SACRIFICE. At the Supper it was already in the cup, as the blood which was soon to be shed, and thus the cup containing blood shed was the anticipated representation of the sacrifice of the Cross. But by this institution of the chalice, representative of the Blood of the Cross, Jesus contracted with humanity a new alliance concluded by His Blood shed, and arrived at His last hour with them, He disposed of His Blood, and by His testament gave it in drink, in the blessed cup, to His apostles" (Mangenot, Eucharistie dans St. Paul, in R. P. A., Nov. 15, 1911, p. 260-261). We take it that the learned author here agrees with our teaching, because if not, we are forced to the conclusion that He has in mind two sacrifices, one earlier in the Supper, the other subsequent on the Cross. In that event He would have to distinguish two testaments, or two alliances of our Lord: one on the Cross sealed by the death of Christ ("a new alliance constituted by the bloody sacrifice of our Saviour", sealed by "the blood which shall be shed on the Cross"), the other here in the Supper, consisting in the institution of the chalice (by this INSTITUTION OF the chalice Jesus CONTRACTED a new alliance"). But has anyone ever thought that Christ made two testaments or two alliances? What would the author of the Epistle to the Hebrews have said of such a suggestion? How can we admit a new covenant consisting not of our Lord's CELEBRATION of the Eucharistic rite, but of our Lord's INSTITUTION of our own Eucharistic celebration? As though one were to say that the new covenant was not in existence before our Lord said Do this for a commemoration of me, and it was only then that the blood was of the new covenant or the chalice was the new testament. Whereas Catholics know well that what the words of consecration signified, they effected, before the words Do this were uttered; hence too they know that the chalice was there and then the testament, and indeed the testament in blood (This chalice is the new testament in my blood), before the command for the continuance of the rite was given. As a matter of fact, had Christ never given the command Do this, the words already prefaced (this chalice etc.) would still remain true. Hence it is a real pleasure to give to the words of this able and learned theologian an interpretation quite in harmony with our own teaching. To sum up, there are two possible ways of avoiding the interpretation I give.

The first is: the conclusion of the testament was effected on the Cross, in the Supper it was only represented. My reply to this is: at the Supper Christ said: This chalice Is the new testament in my blood. These words are definite. If you say that the word is means signifies, you Will find that the adversaries of our faith will drag you further than you want to go.

The second is this: the conclusion of the testament was effected, but not by the Supper; it was effected by the institution of the Mass: Do this for a commemoration of me. I reply: altogether apart from the institution, which follows after the act integrally accomplished, the truth of our Lord's words spoken in the Supper concerning the work He had done must stand.

A third, and rather extraordinary way of avoiding this interpretation was attempted by a certain apologetic writer, who was well known in the XVI century. Jodocus Ravestyn Tiletanus (Josse Ravesteyn) in His Apologiae seu Defensionis Decretorum Sacrosancti Concilii Tridentini .... pars altera, (Louvain 1570, fol. 336, b) refers the establishment of the New Testament back to Abraham. He says that it does not belong either to the Supper or the Cross. Chemnitz had written "The Mediator, the Son of God made that testament in the night on which He was betrayed. " For some reason Ravesteyn objects to this expression and says: "And St. Paul himself expressly contradicts this misstatement, and in the very chapter of the Epistle to the Galatians quoted here. For He says distinctly that the new testament, that which was made with Abraham for the blessing of the Gentiles in His seed, was given four hundred and thirty years before the law was made. Therefore it cannot be true that the new testament was established on the night on which Christ was betrayed. " How simple truth is; but stray from it once, and how wayward our paths become.

We must therefore stand absolutely by the teachings of tradition. The ancient Fathers unanimously held that the testament was FOUNDED on the Supper, and was SEALED with the Blood of the Testator on the Cross. There is a host of witnesses. One might select Manegoldus (Contra Wolfelmum, c. 18 and 19, P.L. 155, 166) an Alsatian writer. The anonymous writer Mellicensis (De scriptoribus ecclesiasticis) speaks of Him as the "master of modern teachers. " Towards the end of the middle ages, Blessed John Rusbroch (Speculum aeternae salutis, c. 5) writes: "Because on the following day, He was to meet His death and leave them, He desired beforehand TO FOUND His testament, which He would leave to His apostles first, and then through them to all adherents of the Christian faith until the end of time, and this He first SEALED courageously with His own Blood, and after Him all the apostles. "

In the XVI century special reference should be made to the author (possibly St John Fisher of Rochester) of the Assertio Septem Sacramentorum contra Martinurn Lutherum written in the name of Henry VIII, and especially commended by the Holy See: "Not only what He previously did in the Supper belongs to the TESTAMENT, but His offering on the Cross also belongs to it, FOR ON THE CROSS He CONSUMMATED THE SACRIFICE WHICH He COMMENCED IN THE SUPPER." (Ed. Pottier, Andegav. 1850, p. 900).

Eck agreed with the "Defender of the Faith": Here is defended the book of the mighty king of England on the sacraments, from the calumnies and impieties of Luther (1523, fol. 1, i. b). The words cited above from the Assertio are true undoubtedly both of the sacrifice and of the covenant or testament. The new alliance was actually entered into at the Supper, and from thence on it continued in the making until, by the fact of the death, it was concluded.

The words of Diego Andrada de Payva of Lisbon, a Portuguese theologian, termed in the Nomenclator "the most celebrated of all the Spaniards", are rich in significance. He writes against Chemnitz: "This cup filled with His Blood, Christ called the new testament .... because it contained THE BLOOD OF His CROSS, whereby all things in heaven and on earth are reconciled, and which is the fountain and the source of all divine favours." (Orthodoxarum explicationum libri decem, lib. 7, Venice 1564, fol. 237).

102After the fourth century Catholics in general held that our Lord ate the legal pasch before the Eucharistic supper, though a negligible number (of whom later), were still in doubt. The only reason for this doubt was, that they thought that the Eucharistic supper itself was sufficient fulfillment for the pasch, and that the Lord had in mind the Eucharistic supper when He said: With desire have I desired to eat this pasch with you before I suffer (Luke XXII. 15).

103This second or eucharistic eating of the azymes and the drinking of the chalice (following so unexpectedly on a pronouncement apparently opposite) harmonizes very beautifully with this change of the testament. Huck (Synopse der drei ersten Evangelien z) therefore and others not only have little regard for the rules of critical exegesis, when between V. 17 and V. 18 they insert verses 19 and 20, but they seem not to have grasped the mind of St. Luke.

Berning (Die Einsetzung der heiligen Eucharistie, 1901, p. 115) is wiser and more penetrating: "Such is the train of thought in Luke. Step by step He first puts before us the paschal supper of the Old Testament, connecting with this the words of the Lord that the time has come for the fulfillment of the pasch; a new Kingdom, the true Kingdom of God, contrasted with the figures of the Old Testament appears, and every figure—this includes the paschal supper—which pointed towards a future and higher pasch, must cease. Then the Lord at once comes to the institution of the Sacred Supper at which the meat is the true Paschal Lamb, Jesus Christ, and at which His Blood in the chalice, the true chalice of benediction, is drink; in place of the old paschal supper, the new Supper, Paschal, sacrificial, and covenant of reunion for the disciples of Christ, must come, to be repeated until His future second coming". Some of the earlier exegetes adopted this interpretation, Ludolphus Carthusiensis (Vita Christi, c. 53) for instance: "I will not eat, I will celebrate no more in figure and symbol, but in truth and reality. For later He partook of His own Body in the sacrament. " Some of the XVI-century Reformers fully realized that the first chalice was linked with the second as the figure with the reality. FROM THIS some of them like Schwenkenfeld (Compare Goetz, Die heutige Abendmahlsfrage 2, p. 78), deduced the presence of Christ spiritually at least, while others, like Luther (ibid., p. 87) inferred the real presence.

We shall deal with the Fathers in the second section.

104Thus Irenaeus: "Times out of number Moses points to the Son of God; He even knew of the day of His Passion, He actually predicted it in figure, calling it the Pasch; and on the very day, the day which Moses foretold long ago, the Lord SUFFERED AND FULFILLED THE PASCH. Not only did He describe the day, He even described the place, and the lateness of the time, the going down of the sun. He said: Thou mayst not immolate the Pasch in any one of thy cities, but in the place which the Lord thy God shall choose, that His name may dwell there: thou shalt immolate the pasch in the evening, at the going down of the sun (Adv Haer., 4, 10, 1. P.G. 7, 1000). And before Irenaeus Justin: "The blood of the pasch, sprinkled on the door-posts and lintels, saved those who were in the slavery of Egypt while the first-born of the Egyptians perished. For the Pasch was Christ, who later was immolated, as Isaias said: He was led like a lamb to the slaughter. For it is written that you took Him captive on the day of the Pasch and likewise that He was crucified on the day of the Pasch" (Dial. 3. P.G. 6, 732). Later we shall consider the testimony of Clement of Alexandria. Tertullian writes (Advers. Marc., 4, 10 P.L. 2, 460); "He even knows the time when He whose Passion the Law prefigures, was to suffer. Because He chose the day of the pasch out of the many Jewish festivals. For in this Moses foretold the sacrament. It is the Pasch of the Lord" etc.

105From the many examples of this interpretation we select one from the Epistola heortastica 42 of Athanasius: "For we are summoned brethren .... to that great, heavenly and all-sufficing Supper, that is to the Pasch, or to Christ IMMOLATED, for Christ our Pasch is immolated." (P.G. 26, 1440). That Athanasius, like others, means the Passion by the immolation of Christ our pasch is plain from the Epist heort., 6, 2; 11, 14; etc. (col. 1384, 1412, etc.).

106We often meet sayings in the earlier writers where they state that the Mass is a commemoration of the Supper as well as of the Passion. We have an example in a passage doubtfully attributed to Hippolytus (In Prov. IX. 2. P.G. 10, 628) : "She hath set forth her table: .... His adorable and holy Body and Blood which are daily consecrated and offered in sacrifice in COMMEMORATION in the mysterious and divine table, the memorial of that unforgettable first Supper mysterious and divine. "

107I know that the feast of the unleavened bread and the pasch could be separated. Origen knew of it (in Levit., hom. 9, n. 5. P.G. 12, 514) before our modern theologians. Yet in Deuteronomy (XVI. 1-8) at any rate both festivals are quite naturally fused into one (Compare W. J. Moulton, art. Passover in D. B. 3, 685) : so much so that Hummelauer after saying in commenting on Exodus XII. 14-20. "The feast of the UNLEAVENED BREAD with the octave, is looked upon as one day like the Christian festivals, " goes further when He comes to comment on Deuteronomy XVI. 7 foll., and speaks repeatedly of what was to be done "either on the day of the pasch or within its octave. " In the New Testament certainly there is no distinction between the two (Matth., XXVI, 17; Mark, XV, I; Luke, XXII, 1. Compare Lesetre article Paque in Vigouroux, Dict. de la Bible, t. 4, z. col. 2094)

108Know ye not that a little leaven corrupteth the whole mass? Purge out the old leaven that ye may be a new paste. For Christ our Pasch is sacrificed. Therefore let us feast, not with the old leaven, nor with the leaven of malice and wickedness, but with the unleavened bread of sincerity and truth.

109It really makes very little difference here whether the Apostle celebrated in leavened or unleavened bread. This one thing at least we do know, that instruction on the Eucharist for the most part centred upon the story of the Last Supper and here the ritual of the unleavened bread played a very important part.

110Hence St Thomas says very well that the words Let us feast in 2 Cor., V., 8 should bear the same interpretation as the words of St John on the bread of life: namely the spiritual and sacramental eating of Christ.

111This expression of Ephraem is unique in Eucharistic theology. Occurring here, it calls for comment. Ephraem usually presents some kind of fire and spirit contained in the Eucharist. Is Christ Himself this fire and spirit, or is it the Holy Spirit who proceeds from Him? Two discourses of St. Ephraem may throw some light on this. I shall quote one (Adversus Scrutatores, Sermo 10. Opera omnia, tom. 3. Syr. and Lat. Rome 1743, p. 24,) though competent critics might suggest some emendation of the published text: "The hidden spirit which is not eaten, is within thy bread; the fire which is not drunk burns in thy wine. Spirit in thy bread, fire in thy wine. TWO THINGS to marvel at WHICH OUR LIPS HAVE TASTED ....[The Lord] fermented them [men] with fire and the Spirit, in order that they might grow in a wondrous mysterious way, and that they might become fire and the spirit .... IMMATERIAL FOOD AND DRINK is prepared FROM FIRE AND THE SPIRIT for men with material bodies .... Fire come down from heaven consumed the victim of Elias. FAVOURING FIRE comes to us, THE REPARATIVE VICTIM OF OUR LIFE.[A better version according to Paulus Peeters, S.J. is 'the fire of love has been for us the victim of life'] That fire of the sacrifice of Elias burned the flesh placed upon it; all of this other fire, O Lord, HAS BECOME OUR FOOD in thy sacrifice. " Probably by the words spirit and fire we must understand Christ Himself contained in the Eucharist, and particularly as imparting to us the spirit of life which is from Himself, and the fire of holy love, which being sent on earth, He ardently desired to be enkindled. The reason is that on the one hand throughout the whole discourse, the spirit evidently runs parallel with the fire, and on the other the fire is expressly said to be the actual victim, the actual food. However the Spirit and the Fire are each considered as food for us, not indeed sensibly, but in a mysterious way, that is in a manner immaterial or indivisible. We have a confirmation of this conclusion in the Sermo Adversus scrutatores, 19 (Ibid., p. 35) Of the ancient custom of giving the term Spirit and even Holy Spirit to the Word, read Coustant in Prefatio generalis ad opera St Hilarii. par. 1, art. 2, n. 57 fol. (P.L. 9, 35 seq.,) or a later helpful note of Edmund Bishop in T. a. S., vol. 8 n. 1, Appendix, n. 6, suppl. not. 3, p. 159-162.

112In His hymn pro magna feria quinta (P.G. 89, 477) Cosmas of Jerusalem, companion of St John Damascene, uses similar words when He sings of the cup of redemption "Thou, the Pasch didst offer thyself for those on whose behalf thou wert about to die, saying: Eat my Body and be strong in the faith. THY CUP, THE REDEMPTION OF THE WHOLE HUMAN RACE, thy cup of gladness which thou didst fill, thou gavest in drink to thy disciples. Thou wert sacrificing thy very self, saying: Drink of my Blood and be strong in the faith, O Christ, hastening to thy Passion which dispensed immortality to all the children of Adam, thou didst say to thy disciples: I have desired to be partaker of this pasch with you, because the Father sent me His Only-Begotten Son as propitiation for the world. " Christ therefore distributed the chalice of redemption in the Supper-the chalice which He offered in sacrifice.

113Compare De Baptismo, 19. P.L. 1222: "The day of the Pasch is more solemn than the day of baptism, because in the Pasch the Passion of the Lord (in which we are baptized) is fulfilled. "

114Add the words almost immediately following: "And so He confessed that with desire He desired to eat the pasch as His own (For it would be beneath the dignity of God to desire a thing that was not His own). He made that bread which He took and which He gave to His disciples, His own Body, by saying This is my body, that is the figure of my body". The words "as His own" are aimed at the refutation of Marcion's error. For as His own Christ desired the new Pasch in this manner: that the bread and wine, from which the Eucharist is consecrated, is truly and actually His own creation. For if Christ were to introduce into the sacrament an alien creation, He would desire to eat a thing that was not His own, but something alien to Him. This would be unworthy of the Most High God. Such being the case, Marcion's argument-He contrasts the God, the creator of material things, and the author of the Old Testament, with God the Founder of the New Testament—falls to the ground.

Why Tertullian adds the words that is the figure of my Body is not difficult to understand. For since His argument concerned the bread element (called already by Irenaeus in a similar case, the earthly element: see later) of the Eucharist, He must have been regarding the thing eaten not as it really was, the Body of Christ, but as what it appeared to be, in which sense it was a figure of Christ's body. Reasonably considered, the passage from Tertullian contains no theological error. As a matter of fact we ourselves regard the species as figures and symbols of the Body and Blood. However He did certainly err in the exegesis when He thought that in the words of our Lord This is my body the pronoun This stands for that which can be seen, the species—as though our Lord had said This which can be seen, which you can touch, break and partake of, is my body. For in reality the pronoun This stands for the thing indicated by the element which can be seen, touched, broken, partaken of, not for that element itself.

Apart however from this exegetic error, Catholic teaching permitted and indeed demanded Tertullian's addition: that is the figure of my Body. For evidently a thing in itself sensible cannot be the actual Body of the Lord in the Sacrament, it can only be the figure of the Body, that is the index of the fleshly Body. It can only be the figure of the Body, otherwise as Tertullian notes immediately, one would have to say that the bread was suspended on the Cross ("The puerile view of Marcion would demand the crucifixion of the bread"); and when the Lord speaks of His Blood, one would have to say that the bread contained the Blood, which is an absurdity ("for blood can only be from flesh"). Therefore the bread element was not actually the Body of the Lord, it was merely the figure of the Body, that is the index of the fleshly Body, far other than the bread. But the bread would not be the figure of the fleshly Body, if Christ did not have a fleshly Body ("for without the real Body there would have been no figure"). Christ therefore had a nature of flesh, a real body, not a mere phantom or empty appearance, as Marcion with the Docetists holds. Clearly then when Marcion says that Christ did not have a real proper fleshly body, He is speaking against Christ.

Moreover Tertullian says against Marcion, that on this the Old Testament agrees with Christ. In Jeremias bread stood for the Body of Christ by a figure of speech, and in the sacrament also bread is conditioned to the Body of Christ as a true figure. (Compare Adv. Marcion., 3, 19. P.L. 2, 348.)

Such is the argument of Tertullian in no wise prejudicial to the teaching of the Church, which is, that underlying the species there is the real Body of Christ, while the species are an index or figure of it. In His argument against Marcion it would have been futile to base His reasoning on the real Body of Christ, since Marcion did not admit that Christ had a real body, with the Docetists He held that it was only apparent. Rather Tertullian had to prove to Marcion that there was a real body of Christ. Later in the same work He refers back to this proof of the Incarnation which He has drawn from the Eucharistic bread. He writes (Adv. Marc., 5, 8, Coll. 489) : "In the sacrament of the bread and the chalice in the Gospel, we have already proved the reality of the Body and Blood of Christ against a mere phantom body in Christ, asserted by Marcion".

In respect of the exegetic error of Tertullian, to which we referred above in this note, we might remark that others too erred in a similar way, even St. Augustine—"His attention being directed to other matters" (Billot, De ecclesiae sacramentis, 4, t. 1., p. 384) in Contra Adimantum, 12, 3. P.L. 42, 144. But all these errors are easily explained once we notice the incorrect interpretation of the pronoun This, so that the dictum of Hilary remains always and everywhere true: "On the reality of the Flesh and Blood of Christ, there is no room left for doubt". (Trin., 8, 13, P.L.. 10, 246).

115Compare these words with the Ambrosian Liturgy cited above, p. 71.

116After Fulgentius, St Bruno of Asti (Com. in Matth., pars 4, 104. P.L. 165, 291-292), Baldwin of Canterbury (Lib. de sacr alt. P.L. 204, 683-684); and of the Eastern Fathers, Theophylactus (in h. l. Lucae, P.G. 123, 1069), declared that the succession of the two testaments was shown in the two chalices.

117Cardinal Pitra who published this work in the Spicelegium Solesmense, t. 1. p. 9-13, thought (too trustfully perhaps) that it was written about the time of the first paschal controversy under Pope Victor. To me it appears strange that the learned writer was not aware that this work had been published already, for it is extant in full at the end of the epistles of St Jerome in the edition of Vallarsius, P.L. 22, 1222 foll. Shortly after I had seen this in R. S. R., Oct.—Dec. 1916, p. 461-462, another publication appeared (1918) in the Corpus Vindobonense (part. sect. I of the works of St Jerome) supervised by Isodore Hilberg. Unfortunately He did not know Pitra's text which was based on the better codices, He was satisfied with the Vatican codex as used by Vallarsius; however He gave a more accurate and correct recension of the text of Vallarsius.

I had thought hitherto (loc. cit.), because of a somewhat oriental colouring of the work, that it was originally written in Greek. I would not venture to say so now: as a matter of fact it will soon be shown by A. Vaccari that it was written in Latin.

118The most significant words in the Solesmes edition are these: "In deigning to give the sacraments of His Body and Blood in His lifetime to His disciples, He did this contrary to the figure, for the lamb which was the type of Christ had to be slain in the pasch .... had to be eaten by the people AFTER the slaying. To me it appears that the Lord acted thus, lest having eaten the legal pasch with His disciples, IF He HAD Nor AFTERWARDS CHANGED THE SACRIFICE, SAYING This is my body, it might be believed that the obligation to eat the legal pasch would still continue .... Moreover there is this to be considered, that it was not the fourteenth day towards evening as prescribed by the Law, that this Lamb of God who taketh away the sin of the world and Christ our Pasch was sacrificed, but on the fifteenth day on which day we know that the Lord observed the festival day of the Jews with its sacrifice. But what we must have in mind is this: that the Lord first ate the figurative lamb, and afterwards strengthened His disciples with the food of His Body; and after the Jewish typical pasch [immolated on the fourteenth day], Christ our Pasch was immolated [on the fifteenth day]. I think that this was, not that the reality should come before the figure, but the figure before the reality" (n. 5 and 6).

119For by the sacrifice of His Body and Blood the Lord made an end of the sacrifice of the legal lamb, the sacrifice being changed, as the author says.

120A similar question was to be raised later by a more modern theologian, Baldwin of Canterbury, and the reply was more satisfying.

121The words which follow a little later appear to me to express the same meaning: SUFFERING without the camp, that is WITHOUT THE CITY, He cleansed all the just of ancient times in His Blood, the elect and the first fruits of sinners doing penance, namely the thief who was crucified with Him. WITHIN THE CITY, however, the night before with His apostles .... following the typical supper of the lamb, He OFFERED IN HOLOCAUST THE SACRIFICE OF His BODY AND BLOOD, a thing well known to Christian or Catholic faith." (col. 1583). Within the city He offered His sacrifice, without the city He was immolated in His Passion.

122In controversy with the reformers of His time Jerome Fossanus O. S. A., maintained from the parallel of the legal lamb, that the offering of the Body and Blood of Christ was made in the Supper, before He submitted to the immolation of the Cross. He says: "The typical lamb used to be offered to the Lord before being slain" (a very doubtful assertion). From this He concluded that the Supper was a sacrifice; so too He says "The sacrifice in blood and the bloodless sacrifice are said to be one and the same"; thus finally Christ in the Supper "shows that He is the true (not the typical) Pasch to be immolated in blood" (De admirando mysterio et Christo adorando in eucharistia, lib. 3. De sacrificio. Turin, 554, fol. 131-132).

123Many of the mass prayers found in the Gelasian Sacramentary for the paschal season may be interpreted in this sense. V. g. the Collect and Secret for Wednesday after Easter, the Secret of Friday, etc., P.L. 1115-1116 ed. Wilson, p. 93 and 95

124The Glories of the Sacred Heart, by Henry Edward, Cardinal Archbishop of Westminster. Third edition, London 1877, p. 130-140.

125All exegetes, I think, admit this. St Anthony of Padua represents them faithfully: "The purpose of the Apostle was to show forth Christ as a priest .... from the blood sacrifice of the Cross .... where Christ was made the Mediator of the New Testament, and wrought our redemption, consummating the sanctified through the one offering." (In S. Pauli epistolas commentarius t. 6, p. 224. Paris 1896. Particularly compare Hebr. VII. 1-26 and VII 27 (Coll C. H. Huyghe, in h. l. Ghent 1901, p. 161).

126It is noteworthy that while St Jerome takes for granted St Paul admitting a ritual similarity between Christ and Melchisedech, He does not do so on His own authority, He says rather that He found it in the Greek writings: "The Apostle at first merely magnifies the difficulty when He says: of whom we have much to say and hard to be intelligently uttered (V. 11); not that the Apostle could not explain it, but that the occasion to do so did not arise. For at the time He was speaking to the Hebrews, that is to the Jews and not to the faithful TO WHOM He WOULD FREQUENTLY REVEAL THE UNDERLYING SACRAMENT. Now if the vessel of election stands in awe at the mystery and confesses that what He is treating of is ineffable, is it not meet that we wretched worms should merely confess the knowledge of our own ignorance, and as a person just getting a glimpse of a high building through a tiny hole, should say: that the Apostle compares the two priesthoods, the old and the new .... ; and that all that follows in praise of Melchisedech, IS REFERRED TO Him AS A TYPE: OF CHRIST FROM WHOM THE SACRAMENTS OF THE CHURCH FLOW. All this I have read in the writings of the Greeks. " He had recently been going through them all: "I have read the writings of the ancients in order to find out the teaching of each, and my answer to you is from their combined wisdom". (Epistola ad Evagrium, n. 2. P.L.. 22, 677).

127Thomassinus (De Incarnatione Verbi, 1, 10, C. 16, n. 3) writes: "The other likenesses to Melchisedech though manifold and elegantly portrayed, are nevertheless superficial, additional and merely touch the fringe of the subject; but when we consider the two as priests, the chief and primary agreement must be sought for in the manner of sacrificing .... As I have already said, St Paul indicates this clearly enough, where, while disparaging the butchery connected with the Aaronic ancient victims, He declares that the nobler priesthood was initiated in Melchisedech. It would be absurd to speak of a resemblance between the priesthood of Christ and that of Melchisedech, and a divergence from the Aaronic priesthood, for such could no longer exist, were the sacrificial action of Christ different in kind from that of Melchisedech and similar to that of Aaron. " The authors of the commentary on the Epistle to the Hebrews (on the verse VII. 17) in the work published by Migne Scripturae sacrae cursus completus (t. 25, col. 335) agree: "In no other place did Christ show that He was a priest forever according to the order of Melchisedech (as David foretold in Psalm loo and promised that He would be) EXCEPT IN THE SUPPER in which He offered Himself under the species of bread and wine. " Opportunely then St Anthony of Padua (loc. cit., p. 224) asks: "Why the Apostle while representing the priesthood of Melchisedech as type of the priesthood of Christ omits to mention the offering of bread and wine"? The same "difficulty" was raised some time back by Franzelin (De S. Euchar. Sacram. et Sacrif., 1868, p. 338). In estimating the adequacy of the solutions offered one should keep in mind the rule that in general an interpretation ought to be more than just tolerable; it should flow naturally.

128We are omitting those Fathers who place the priesthood of Christ as functioning in the Supper but without formally calling it Melchisedechian. We give one example of such reference found in the Sermo major de fide, attributed with some probability to St Athanasius (P.G. 26, 1284) : "By His own Body He was made and was called High Priest and Apostle (Hebr., III. I) through the mystery which He gave us when He said: This is my body which is given for you, and my blood of the new testament not of the old which is shed for you". Theodoretus certainly quotes this passage as from Athanasius (Dial. z. P.G. 83, 180). Undoubtedly the priesthood mentioned in Hebr., III. I must be interpreted as referring to the Passion whereby we are redeemed (compare 11. 17). Thus Athanasius was convinced that the priesthood of the Passion was exercised in the Supper. Secondly, they see a direct resemblance between the gifts offered by Melchisedech and the Victim presented by Christ on the Cross.

129Here again we omit the passages from the Fathers where in their exposition of the priesthood of Christ according to the order of Melchisedech, they appeal to the ecclesiastical sacrifice of the Eucharist, that is not to the Supper but to the daily Mass. Petavius (De Incarnatione Verbi 1, 12, C. It, n. 6, foll.) and Thomassinus (De Incarnatione Verbi, 1, 10, c. 16) have collected a number of such passages. Once it is established that in the Supper our Lord offered the sacrifice according to the order of Melchisedech it is naturally inferred that we have the Melchisedechian priesthood of Christ m the Mass; for as we shall see later, the Mass is the sacrifice of those who under Christ as Head, offer Christ as Victim. Hence just as the Church is one with her Head, as the member is one with the body, so is our sacrifice one with the sacrifice of Christ. But we are not dealing with the Mass now, we are treating of the Supper, and we are culling testimonies, which, with one or two exceptions, are rarely quoted.

130"Christ our Lord and Master first instituted the sacrifice which Christians offer to God, when before He was betrayed He GAVE 815 BODY AND BLOOD to the Apostles, as we read in the Gospel: Jesus took bread and blessing gave to them (Matth XXVI. 26). Melchisedech king of Salem first offered this sacrifice as a TYPE OF THE BODY AND BLOOD OF CHRIST, and He was the first to intimate in image the same mystery of this great sacrifice, BEARING THE LIKENESS OF OUR LORD AND SAVIOUR JESUS CHRIST, THE ETERNAL PRIEST, of whom it is said: Thou art a priest forever according to the order of Melchisedech. Hence Christians are commanded to offer this sacrifice, the sacrifices of the Jews, which were commanded to be offered, in the bondage of the ancient people, abandoned and abrogated. And so we do WHAT THE LORD HIMSELF DID FOR US, BEING WHAT He OFFERED not in the morning but towards the evening after He had supped. For thus it behoved Christ to fulfill the type towards the evening that the HOUR OF THAT SACRIFICE: might show the evening of the world. And therefore the Apostles did not communicate fasting, because the typical pasch had to be fulfilled, and only thus should they pass on to the true sacrament of the Pasch" (De ecclesiasticis officiis, 1. 10, c. 18, n. 1-2. P.L. 83, 754).

131Having quoted Luke XXII. 19, He continues: "Having completed the ceremonies of the ancient pasch .... He passes on to the new Pasch .... in order to show that by substituting the sacrament of His Body and Blood for the flesh and blood of the lamb in the figure of bread and wine, it was of Himself that it was said: The Lord hath sworn, and He will not repent: thou art a priest forever according to the order of Melchisedech (l. 6. P.L. 92, 596 in Lucae evangelium expositio).

132"Melchisedech did not offer fleshly victims but bread and wine, like Christ offering to God the Father the oblation of bread and wine, that is His Body and Blood" (In Hebr., VII. 17, P.L.. 104).

133"He that eateth my flesh and drinketh my blood, abideth in me and I in Him. For it is the saving sacrifice offered in type of the Body and Blood of Christ by Melchisedech in the Old Testament, which in the New Testament the Mediator between God and man fulfilled." (Liber de ordine baptismi, c. 18, P.L. 105, 259-260).

134Christ the Lord is a priest for ever according to the order of Melchisedech who, king of Salem, that is king of peace, offered bread and wine m figure of the true priesthood of Christ, who OFFERED to God bread, that is His immaculate Body, and wine, that is His Blood: and according to this type the Church now offers bread and wine in the consecration of the Body and Blood of the Lord". (Eclogue de ordine romano, n. 19. P.L. 98; or 105, 1234).

135The priesthood of Melchisedech was merely a shadow of the priesthood of Christ "Because Melchisedech did not offer to the Deity His own body and blood in bread and wine" (Adv. Graecorum calumnias, c. 42. P.L. 143, 958-959).

136"Christ was .... a priest according to the order of Melchisedech who offered bread and wine, whereas He immolated Himself to the Father, as food and drink for the faithful" (In Psalm 109, 4. P.L. 194, 696).

137"Thou art a priest forever according to the order of Melchisedech. In very truth a priest, for He gave the mystic bread and wine to the apostles in the Supper, just as Melchisedech gave bread and wine to Abraham and His companions returning from war". (In Psalm log. 4. P.G. 120, 1088).

138Compare De Mysteriis 8. P.L. 16, 404: "Melchisedech met Abraham and brought forth those things which Abraham venerated and received .... Therefore the sacrament which you have received is not a human gift, it is divine, it was brought forth by Him who blessed Abraham, the father of the faithful" etc. etc.

139"Why did He say according to the order of Melchisedech? Both ON ACCOUNT OF THE SACRAMENTS, because He also offered in bread and wine for Abraham, also because this priesthood is free from the Law, and as St. Paul says hath neither beginning of days nor end of life. For what He had in figure, that Christ had in reality". (Expositio in Psalm log, n. 8 P.G. 56, 276-277. Compare editor's preface, parag. VII. col. 20-21, who gives the text as genuine, though some consider it doubtful).

140"Afterwards Melchisedech king of Salem, bringing forth breads and wine, offered them to Him (For, He says, He was a priest of the most high God) and He accepted what was offered by Him. Rightly and justly He accepted them from Melchisedech; for holy Scripture indicated His power, saying He was a priest of the most high God, BUT WHAT WAS DONE WAS IN TYPE OF CHRIST, AND THE VERY THINGS OFFERED PRESIGNIFIED THE MYSTERY. Hence He did not reject it" (In Genesim hom. 36, n. 3. P.G. 53, 356-357; compare hom. 35, n. 5, col. 328).

141"He was made priest when He took flesh, when He offered the sacrifice .... St Paul points implicitly to the greatness of the sacrifice, which being ONE SUFFICED, AND OFFERED ONCE availed more than all the others." (In Epin. ad Hebr. hom 13, n. 1-3. P.G. 62, 103-107).

142Adv. Judaeos, 1, 7. P.G. 48, 922-925

143"Melchisedech is not the priest of the Jews but of the world. So too Christ the Lord OFFERED HIMSELF TO GOD FOR ALL MANKIND, and not for the Jews only. He COMMENCED His PRIESTHOOD ON THE NIGHT BEFORE His PASSION: when having taken bread, and given thanks, He broke and said: Take ye and eat; this is my body. In like manner also the chalice, when He had mingled, He gave to His disciples, saying: Drink ye all of this, for this is my blood of the new testament, which shall be shed for many unto the remission of sins .... . Moreover Christ is priest now, He does not Himself offer, but is the Head of those who do offer. For He calls the Church His body and through her, He as Man discharges the priesthood .... It is the Church who offers the symbols of the Body and Blood, sanctifying the whole of the faithful through the first fruits (Christ) " (In Psalm 109. 4, 2. P.G. 80, 1772-3).

144ONE SACRIFICE sufficed for salvation .... Because at the same time Priest and Victim He offered His own Body. What ministry does He exercise WHO OFFERED HIMSELF ONCE AND OFFERED NO FURTHER SACRIFICE? .... If then the legal priesthood came to an end, and moreover THE PRIEST WHO 19 ACCORDING TO THE ORDER OF MELCHISEDECH OFFERED SACRIFICE, AND MADE EVERY OTHER SACRIFICE UNNECESSARY, why do the priests of the New Testament offer a mystic liturgy? To those who are instructed in divine knowledge it is quite clear that we do not offer another sacrifice, but we OFFER THE MEMORIAL OF THAT ONE SAVING SACRIFICE. For the Lord Himself commands us to do so: Do this for a commemoration of me." (In Hebr., VII. 27 and VIII. 1-4 P.G. 83, 733-736

145In the book De diversis quaestionibus LXXXIII, q. 61, n. 2 (P.L. 40, 49) we find this double proposition: Christ offered Himself a holocaust for our sins (in the sacrifice of the redemption); and He instituted the likeness of this holocaust to be celebrated in memory of His Passion: "He is also our priest forever according to the order of Melchisedech, who offered Himself a holocaust for our sirs and commanded the likeness of His sacrifice to be celebrated in memory of His Passion; and so, that which Melchisedech offered to God, we see offered now throughout the whole world in the Church of Christ. " Our sacrifice therefore is similar to the holocaust by which Christ redeemed us. A probable inference from this would be that, like our own sacrifice, the sacrifice of the Redemption was offered under the appearance of bread and wine. However I must admit as also possible that the likeness may be here taken as that of the symbol to the reality, of the sacramental immolation to the immolation in blood. In that event it would have no bearing on the present question.

146Note the words "according to the order .... that is according to the rite".

147St Martin of Leon (P.L. 208, 1339) inserting this passage of Isidore in His 34th Sermon, concludes it more tersely: ". . that is according to the rite of that kind of sacrifice which Christ fulfilled in His Passion. "

148Later we shall cite another passage from Rupert more opportunely in the same sense and at least equally worthy of consideration. Meantime compare what He had written already (1, 2, C. 8, col. 39-40) : "The High Priest about TO GO HENCE TO THE HOLY PLACE OF HEAVEN BY WAY OF THE PASSION, SACRIFICES IN A WONDERFUL MANNER according to His own order, according to the rite of a heavenly sacrifice, taking bread etc". It has been already shown how this true Melchisedech offered the sacrifice in bread and wine for Abraham and all mankind of all ages past

149This must not be confused (as was done by J. Mearns, Early Latin Hymnaries, an Index of Hymns in Hymnaries before 1100, Cambridge 1913, p. 18) with the Hymn of St. Fulbert of Chartres, Chorus novae Hierusalem, Nova meli dulcedinem, etc. in J. Stevenson, The later hymns of the Anglo-Saxon Church, Durham, 1851, or in H. A. Daniel, Thesaurus hymnologicus, Halis 1841, tom. 1, p. 221 and therefrom in P.L. 141, 352. Ulysse Chevalier in His Repertorium carefully distinguish the two.

150It is notable that Muratori, a man extraordinarily well versed in patristic and liturgical studies, even when defending a twofold sacrificial activity in Christ our Priest, yet does so in such fashion as to lend the great weight of His authority to our teaching: "As we know, He says, from Psalm 109 and from the Epistle of St Paul to the Hebrews, Christ was Priest and Pontiff according to the order of Melchisedech. Anyone who honestly and dispassionately considers this truth must see what we are looking for. To the Jews and the Gentiles alike, priest or pontiff was simply sacrificer. Deny the right of sacrificing to anyone, and you must forthwith deny Him the right to be called priest; Christ the Lord on the Cross was truly Priest and Victim; but He did not offer sacrifice like Melchisedech on the Cross. He only discharges this office, when m imitation of Melchisedech He offers bread and wine to God in the sacred mysteries. And seeing that there is no sacrifice without a priest, and no priest without a sacrifice, seeing also that there is no other place where Christ fulfils the priesthood and the sacrifice after the manner of Melchisedech, except in the consecration and the offering of the bread and wine, we must necessarily place this other sacrifice of our Lord in that sublime action." (De rebus liturgicis dissertatio, cap. 18. P.L. 74, 999). When He says that the Melchisedechian priesthood of our Lord was exercised in the Supper, He is at one with all the Fathers and with the whole Church. But when He says that the Melchisedechian sacrifice was not the actual sacrifice of the Cross, is He not in opposition to the plainest evidence of the Scriptures? The Catholic theologian should be consistent, and admit that the Melchisedechian sacrifice was commenced in the Supper and completed on the Cross.

151Crampon writes in reference to this passage: "St Paul describes His preaching among the pagans, under an image borrowed from the Mosaic sacrifices. " I think however, that the words sanctified by the Holy Spirit, have an implication other than the Mosaic sacrifices, because the Law did not have this sanctification of the Spirit, but only of the flesh. The Melchisedechian priesthood of our Redeemer alone was capable of spiritual sanctification, as we learn from the Epistle to the Hebrews.

152Compare the Chaldaic anaphora cited towards the end of the III Thesis. (p. 74.)

153Hence commenting on the words of Exodus: on that night they shall eat flesh roasted at the fire, Rupert wisely remarks: "Because a Virgin conceived Him from the Holy Spirit who is eternal fire, and, as the Apostle says, He by the same Holy Spirit offered himself a living Victim to the living God: by the same fire He is roasted on the altar. For by the operation of the Holy Spirit, the bread becomes the Body, and the wine becomes the Blood of Christ." (De Trin. et op. ej., In Exod. 1. 2, C. 10. P.L. 67, 617). See also Scheeben Dogmatik, 3; n. , on this argument.

154A longer form of this verse: The bread which I will give, is my flesh which I will give, for the life of the world is found in a number of the Greek Fathers (compare Maldonatus in h. l.). Two Syrian versions, the Pischita and the Syrian version of the Hexapla have the longer reading also, and so too have the Diatesseron of Tatianus (cf. Ciasca Tatiani evangeliorum harmoniae, arabice, p. 35). Apparently the longer reading must be abandoned, for the phrase corresponding to the second I will give is absent from most of the other codices, NB. C. D. also from the ancient Latin version, and from the Syrian versions Cur and Sin. It is absent also from the Ethiopian version, as my learned colleague L. Gry informs me. The ancient codex N (N) puts the phrase corresponding to is my flesh after for the life of the world, and Tischendorf-Gebhardt follows this reading. The remaining witness whom Nestle follows, puts the word is my flesh before. This latter sequence which we follow is apparently the more probable; if we choose the former however it would favour us even more in the present discussion.

155Among non-Catholics, even Loisy writes: "The scene indicated by the context wherein is dominant the thought of Christ given in food, as flesh and blood in a state of death, is evidently this: And the bread which I shall give, is my flesh, my flesh given for the life of the world. The idea of the Passion and that of the Eucharist are as closely linked together in the fourth Gospel as in St Paul and in the Synoptic narratives of the Last Supper .... It would be going too far to deny in this discourse all allusion to the death of Jesus; the idea of the death is there in the background, invisible but ever present; and the idea of Christ, Lamb of God, true Paschal Victim, true Pasch of the Christian, is suggested in the date which the Evangelist assigns to the multiplication of the loaves" (Le quatrieme Evangile, p. 455-456.) What Toletus had already written is worthy of note: "The Flesh which is to be given unto death for the life of the world, that very same Flesh is the bread which I will give" (In h. l. Col. Agr., 1589, p. 585). And He says this notwithstanding the fact that (unlike the Greek writers and Maldonatus, see below), He very rightly reads I will give but once in the text.

156"He clearly says that this bread will be His Passion and death .... and IN SAYING I will give He SIGNIFIES THAT He WOULD SUFFER AND DIE BY A VOLUNTARY GIFT (Cajetan, Evangelia cum commentariis, in h. l. Paris 1540, fol. 251. D). The authority of Cyril of Alexandria favours this interpretation, He writes on this text: "And the bread which I will give, is my flesh which I will give for the life of the world. He says: I die for all, in order to give life to all through myself, and I have made my Flesh the price of the flesh of all mankind. For in my death death will die, and the fallen nature of man will rise again with me. Moreover that Christ offered His Flesh for the life of the world, will be plain to us from His own words: For them do I sanctify myself .... Note how He says I sanctify for I CONSECRATE AND I OFFER an immaculate Victim in the odour of sweetness. For what was offered on the altar was sanctified or called holy in the Law. Therefore Christ gave His Body for the life of all, and by His Body He again put life into them. For after the life-giving Word of God dwelt in the flesh, He made that flesh life-giving. For this reason the Body of Christ gives life to the partakers of It." (P.G. 73, 565).

157In the Catena aurea (in h. l.) St Thomas adverts to this, giving the following words as from Bede: "The bread which I will give, is my flesh for the life of the world. THE LORD GAVE. THIS BREAD WHEN He gave the mystery of His Body and Blood to the disciples, and WHEN He offered Himself to the Father on the altar of the Cross."

158Even with the longer reading with I will give twice, we should arrive at the same conclusion. Claudius de Sainctes (De rebus eucharisticis, sexta repetitio c. 4, Paris, 1575, fol. 227, b) who adopted the longer reading made the following admirable comment: "The Son of Man connects the two gifts: the bread which l will give, is my flesh which I will give, for the life of the world. He promises twice that He will give His Flesh. He promises once that He will give His Flesh to us, and once that He will give It for us, AND HE DESIRES US TO UNDERSTAND THE FIRST GIFT THROUGH THE SECOND, seeing that He deliberately unites both. And so let him who desires to know without error how the former gift is to be made remember how the latter was made. For what justification have we for separating the former giving from the latter, since this latter giving is added merely to interpret and to explain the former? He says: The bread which I will give, is my flesh which I will give, for the life of the world. This CONNECTION ALSO CONTAINS AN ALLUSION TO THE ANCIENT SACRIFICES."

159Compare the Syriac Liturgy of St Ignatius: "On the night of the Pasch on which He was given over for the life and the Salvation of the world, (R. 2, 217) , and many others in a like strain (ibid., p. 245, etc.).

160Bear in mind that this sacrifice (in which there is a pact or covenant with God) is, on the word of Christ Himself, offered for us unto the remission of sins. Moreover St. Paul openly declares that the Melchisedechian Sacrifice of Christ was ratified and efficacious, efficient and sufficient

161That Judas alone is referred to here, or at least referred to principally, even if we include the high priests and the Jews, is taught by Cyril of Alexandria in h. l. P.G. , 641 (compare Pusey edition 1872, t. 3, p. 73) ; by St. Thomas in h. l. : "He that hath delivered thee to me hath the greater sin, that is Judas"; also by Denis the Carthusian in h. l. and by Calmet in h. l. Among modem writers, by Dehaut and Lesetre L'Evangile explique 1904, and later Lagrange in h. l. also by Calmes L'Evangile selon St Jean, 1904 Non-Catholics also agree, V. g. Grotius in h. l. A. Barnes Notes explicatives et pratiques sur les Evangiles, Lausanne, 1880, p. 394: M. F. Saddler The Gospel according to St John, 5, 1891 in h. l. (Coll. Mc. X. 38). 448; not to mention Loisy in h. l. Not a few modem writers however think (wrongly, I believe) that Judas is not intended, among them Knabenbauer and Durand in h. l.

162Compare on Exodus, I, 4, c. 7. . L. 167, 704) : "What is that table behind the propitiatory prepared in the tabernacle of the Lord, but the table of the holy Body and Blood of the Lord, WHICH HAD ITS BEGINNING IN THE PASSION OF OUR SAME LORD JESUS CHRIST? For while He was troubled in mind, when being in an agony He prayed the longer, when His sweat came as drops of blood trickling down upon the ground, amidst all this the worker of our atonement and redemption, prepared the table by taking bread etc."

163Bear in mind the words of St. Gregory of Nyssa above (p. 62).

164Sold "distraxit" i. e. "vendidit". Compare note 265 of Hugh Menardi O.S.B., in Sacramentarium Gregorianum (P.L. 78, 319).

165Thus Cyril of Alexandria explaining the ninth verse of the prayer: "Again He mediates as Man, Peacemaker and Mediator between God and man; our great most holy Pontiff appeases the anger of the Father by His prayers, offering His own self in sacrifice for us. For He is Victim and Priest, clean sacrifice and true Lamb who taketh away the sin of the world. " (Cyril of Alexandria, In Joann Evangel., I, II, c. 8, on the verses of XVII. 9-17. P.G. 74, 505-508). So truly liturgical is the prayer, that Bede conjectured and Alcuin openly stated, that it was actually the very hymn, which being said (or sung, as Bede and Alcuin say) , the Lord went out to Mount Olivet (Bede In Marci evangelium expositio, 1, 4. P.L. 92, 273) ; Alcuin Epist. 164. P.L. 100, 430). Rupert of Dietz declares for the liturgical character of the prayer: "Why does He speak thus, and why does He, High Priest and saving Victim, pray thus"? Later, on verse 26: "So did He High Priest, Atoner and Atonement, Priest and Sacrifice, pray for us, and henceforth His gaze was fixed on one thing only. For when the prayer was concluded, the strong cry of His heart did not cease, seeing that He merely signified in the words of the prayer His reason and purpose for submitting to the cords, the insults, the blows, the spittle, the scourging, the crowning with thorns, the Cross, the nails, the lance, the cup of vinegar and gall, remaining silent and not opening His mouth through it all" (Comment. in Joann., 1, 12. P.L. 169, 757 and 764). Indeed, as Knabenbauer says in h. l. : "This prayer is called by later writers with great unanimity, the sacerdotal, pontifical prayer of Christ. ....wherein He consecrates His sacrifice, and prays to the Father for its fruits."

166"As befitted the occasion and the very nature of things, the prayer in which Jesus 'consecrates Himself and His own' to Him, is grave even to solemnity. Here again it seems a preface to the prayers of the Church. It has been said that the 17th Chapter of St. John is 'a model of liturgical supplication'. This observation is just and the analogy is seen easily. One of the first preoccupations of the Christian liturgy must have been to reproduce the words and the actions of Christ in prayer" (Durand, Le discours de la Cene, in R. S. R. November-December, 1911, p. 525-526). Compare the comment of Cyril of Alexandria on Matth XXVI. 27 and Luke XXII. 19 which will be considered later: that the thanksgiving of our Lord was a type of our anaphora.

167"Having concluded the long and powerful discourse on the shedding of His Blood, the discourse which the Lord addressed to His disciples just before the Passion, and having also prayed to His Father for His own, John the Evangelist immediately commences the Passion in these words: When Jesus had said these things, he went forth with his disciples over the brook Cedron. " (Alcuin In Joannem, XVII. 26 and XVIII. 1. P.L. 100, 968). So exegetes generally. Evidently we must reject the curious teaching of Rupert of Dietz, when he says that this prayer was made at greater length in the garden (cf. Luke XXII. 43) by our Lord (op. cit., col. 750-751).

168Chrysostom: "What is: I sanctify myself. ? I OFFER SACRIFICE TO THEE. ....For that He referred to His sacrifice when He said / sanctify, is clear from what follows. ....since indeed He was dying for them. For when He said He was dying for them (what He did say was: For them do I sanctify myself). ..... " (In Joann XVII. 19-20. P.G. 59, 443). Cyril of Alexandria has similar words on the same verses (P.G. 74, 544) , and In Joann., VI. 51, (compared C. VI above) , and in book 10, De Adoratione in spiritu et veritate, (P.G. 68, 688) , we read these beautiful words: "When He says I sanctify He means this: I OFFER AND I DEDICATE MYSELF an immaculate Victim to God and the Father. For what is dedicated to God is said to be sanctified. " Rupert (In Levitic., 1, 2, C. 5. P.L. 167, 792) : "In John the Evangelist He says of the sanctification of His Blood which He was about to shed: For them do I sanctify myself. " St. Thomas in h. l. : "I sanctify myself, that is I offer myself in sacrifice."

169Cajetan is perhaps the plainest of all: "And for them do I sanctify myself. This is the PRESENT TASK whereby Jesus sanctifies Himself, OFFERING HIMSELF FOR THEM IN THE PASSION AND DEATH. I sanctify, i. e., I depute myself to God for them. That is, TO OFFER AND SACRIFICE HIMSELF TO GOD FOR THEM. (in h. l. op. cit., fol. 251). On this matter we have already seen Gropper (see p. 115). To contemporary writers mentioned by Knabenbauer (in. h. l.) we may add Calmes: "In the Greek, the word for 'I sanctify' ,) sometimes means the offering of a victim, and again the purification or sanctification resulting from this offering; it is applied to the apostles in this latter signification, but when the Saviour applies it to Himself, He has in mind His own voluntary immolation. ....I offer myself in sacrifice, so that they may be sanctified in truth. " Durand (loc. Cit., p. 539) : "Ill the final prayer of the High Priest of the new alliance, one finds no difficulty in interpreting the words: I consecrate myself, as referring to the saving sacrifice of the Cross. " Loisy writes: "The double meaning of the word 'consacre' gives rise to something like a play of words: Christ consecrates Himself, that is to say vows HIMSELF TO DEATH IN QUALITY OF VICTIM, in order that the disciples may be consecrated, that is to say sanctified, given to God and united to Him by the spirit which Jesus will communicate to them". (op. cit., p. 808-809.) There is no play on words however in the word sanctifico which our Lord uses. Sanctification of the victim offered to God is the same as sanctification of the partakers of the victim offered to God; from the one the other is derived, and the divine sanctity itself is conveyed to those who feed on the victim by means of the food itself.

170The necessity or obligation was not psychological, it was moral; the former leaves no room for choice

171See Appendix A. (p. 125) which immediately follows: Christ and the obligation of dying

172Thus the author of the tenth among the homilies of St. Cyril of Alexandria (very likely St. Cyril himself, though there are doubts, owing to the expression one of the Holy Trinity interpolated towards the end) : "Let us hasten to the mystic Supper, the fatted calf is immolated, not today by the enemies of God, but by Himself, in order to show that His saving Passion is spontaneous. " (Homilia 10, in mysticam coenam, P.G. 77, 1017).

Chrysostom had already said (In Matth., XXVI. 26, Hom. 82, n. 1, P.G. 58, 738) : ". ....And He gives thanks, teaching us how we should celebrate this mystery, SHOWING THAT HE DID NOT COME UNWILLING TO THE PASSION.

173More from the Fathers in Appendix A. immediately following.

174Understand clearly that we are not discussing the PSYCHOLOGICAL FREEDOM OF CHRIST, that is His mental capability of making or not making a free choice. We are speaking simply of HIS MORAL FREEDOM. In other words, admit in Christ the obligation to submit to death, admit also the absolute sinlessness of Christ, we are not here discussing His power of choice apart from any psychological necessity. We ask merely: was Christ under this obligation to die, and how and whence?

175Ambrosiaster, among the Latin Fathers, says something similar: "In permitting Him to be slain, God is said to have handed Him over, as the Lord said to Pilate: Thou shouldst not have any power against me, were it not given to thee from above. For the power was given to Pilate, but it was given to him as a willing agent; in other words, he was allowed to do what he willed, namely to hand Him over: for while he is dissimulating, he does hand Him over; because had Pilate been unwilling, Christ would not have been put to death. He did permit His death therefore, but He permitted it at the hands of those who desired to slay Him, and desired it not under compulsion but of their own accord. They therefore were not guiltless, because what was permitted to them, they themselves desired; because their guilt was in their desire. Nevertheless God did permit it, knowing that in the conflict with the devil it would help many. " (P.L. 17, 394, according to the more probable reading).

176Cardinal Franzelin mentions by name a number of modern theologians who follow this teaching (op. cit., p. 450). Add Billot (De Verbo lncarnato, th. 28 and 29).

177Many modern theologians have conjured up some kind of "broad command"; whether this is a command and so obligatory, or not obligatory and hence not a command is not at all clear. Moreover, taken as a command and so binding, it is not easy to reconcile with the opinion of the Fathers, who say in so many words that it was not a command, and leave the whole matter to Christ Himself, merely attributing assent to the Father. As broad, to be taken in a wide sense only, it is difficult to reconcile with any satisfaction to the words of Christ in the garden, where He says He was bound seemingly against His will, by the will of the Father.

178Honorius of Autun or whoever was the author of the Elucidarium gives this teaching very concisely: "Why did He die? Because He was obedient, it is written: He was made obedient to the Father unto death—, Why did the Jews put Him to death? I would like to know this. BECAUSE HE STEADFASTLY AIMED AT JUSTICE AND TRUTH in HIS LIFE AND TEACHING; THE HUMANITY OWED THIS OBEDIENCE TO THE DIVINITY, God requires it from every rational creature. Would any father allow his beloved son, his only son, to be slain, if he could prevent it? When God saw that His own Son desired this great work, that is, the defeat of the cruel tyrant and the freeing of the captive from that tyrant, He gave assent to this great work and permitted His death. " (Elucidarium lib. 1, c. 20. P.L. 172, 1125).

179We are now comparing a vow and a sacrifice purely under this aspect: that each entails some religious obligation. From other aspects a vow and a sacrifice have many points of difference, among which we may note two in particular: 1). A vow is in the nature of a PRAYER, in which a promise is ENUNCIATED the offering of a Vicum is an action in which A GIFT IS HANDED OVER. 2). A vow is a promise REFERRING TO THE FUTURE, an offering is a gift given HERE AND NOW.

180Remember the passages from Aaphrates, Ephraem, Leo the Great, cited above (p. 124 seq.). Hence it is that consistently with all we have said, the other Fathers whom we have quoted, stress the liberty IN THE OFFERING made by Christ; so Hilary: ". ....by freely offering Himself a Victim"; Cyril, "He gave Himself to suffer"; Anselm, "He freely offered Himself."

181It should be remembered that we are dealing here with SACRIFICE IN THE STRICTEST SENSE, AND NOT MERELY IN THE MORAL OR METAPHORICAL SENSE, such as would be the death of the martyrs of the Old Testament or the New, or of a person endangering his life, as a soldier for his country.

182And in this sense we have a lead from Dionysius Bar Salibi (Expositio Liturgiae, C. 12, Labourt translation, p. 72) in praise of that sacrifice WHICH THE LORD SACERDOTALLY COMPLETED in the cenacle, on the evening on which He was to give Himself up for us. For after He had discharged the duty of the legal pasch, He assumed the office of ARCHPRIEST". It is in fact customary with the Fathers to confer on Christ IN THE SUPPER sacerdotal and pontifical titles ("priest and prince of sacrificers" Ephraem p. 58; "Pontiff, High Priest by a mystery, " Athanasius probably and Theodoretus certainly, p. 101; "our Pontiff, " Cyril of Alexandria, p. 121; "Pontifex summus, " Rupert, p. 104, cf. p. I 18) , titles which certainly imply majesty and dignity; just is it is also customary to give Him AS SUFFERING titles suggestive of immolation, hostia, victim, sacrifice, which connote the afflicted and abject state of Him who was a worm and no man.

To the passages we have already cited from Rupert, we may add the following, in which the sacerdotal office and the victimal condition are so contrasted as to assign the victimal condition to the Passion and the sacerdotal office to the Supper (Comment. in Matth., I, II P.L. 168, 1579) : "Christ is Priest and Vicum but under different aspects: He is Priest because as the Apostle says: Being an high priest of the good things to come, by a greater and more perfect tabernacle not made with hand, that is of this creation, neither by the blood of goats and calves, but BY HIS OWN BLOOD HE ENTERED once INTO THE HOLIES having obtained eternal redemption, BRINGING FORTH THE SACRIFICE OF BREAD AND WINE, ACCORDING TO THE ORDER OF MELCHISEDECH IN THE SACRAMENT OF HIS BODY AND BLOOD". Rupert then goes on to specify Him in various ways the Victim of the Passion. Note how evidently Rupert makes one the sacrifice of the Redemption and the Melchisedechian sacrifice of Christ in the Eucharistic bread and wine.

The same contrast of dignity in the Priest and of humility in the Victim was generally adopted by our apologists against the Protestants, for instance, in the Volumen acatholicum XX articulorum confessionis augustanae editum a Jacobo Heilbronner..

. anno MDCVII compendio recognitum et castigatum a Sebastiano Heissio S.J. (Dilingae, 1608, art. 8, de sacrificio missae, p. 7172). "You say on p. 183 that the sacrifice of the Mass is contrary to the institution of the sacrament of the Eucharist. ..

The sacrifice of the Mass is not contrary to the words of the institution; as a matter of fact Christ Himself offered this sacrifice in these very words. For HE WHO ONCE DIED A VICTIM IN BLOOD on the altar of the Cross, is the very same TRUE PRIEST AND PONTIFF who offered Himself in a bloodless manner in the last Supper, and made true sacrifice."

183"We celebrate today, dearly beloved, the most sacred solemnity of the approaching Pasch, and the saving effigy of the immolation of the Lord, changed by the offering of Christ into the spiritual sacrifice" (Missale Gothicum, missa in coena Domini" P.L.. 72, 265). The effigy of the sacrifice is said to be changed into the spiritual sacrifice, not only because it is accomplished by the intervention of the Holy Spirit, but also because it is celebrated in such a rite, that the true offering of the true Body and Blood unto death for the remission of sins is visible only to the eyes of faith

184This does not warrant the conclusion that Christ was not Vicum in the Supper, or that He was not Priest on the Cross; but, as will be explained later, in the sacrifice of Christ, the priest was never without the victim, nor the victim without the priest. Christ therefore was Victim in the Supper and Priest on the Cross, and the reason is: that He was the Priest of His Vicum and the Victim of His Priesthood.

185The Salamanticenses rightly interpret the principle and the parallel in these words: "As the sacrament is one, not by a physical but by a moral oneness, it can therefore consist of two things so widely different as external realities and words; so too the sacrifice has a like oneness after the manner of artificial being; in consequence it is capable of being constituted of physically different acts, especially in that it implies one thing directly and another thing indirectly, although essentially it implies both one and the other" (De Eucharistiae sacramento, disp. 13, disp. 13, dub. 2. parag. 3, n. 29).

186For the sacrifice only ended in the death. Hence it was not until after the death that the veil of the temple was rent (compare Chrysostom, De coemeterio et de cruce, n. 2. P.G. 49, 297) ; without the death the work of the Redemption—our ransom, the conclusion of the covenant, and the passage from the old priesthood to the new—was not completed, though all this as well as the sacrifice itself was in the process of completion (in fieri) throughout the whole duration of the sacrifice: as is shown in the Supper from the very manner of our Lord's announcement (in words of the present tense) of the relation of His Body to death-to which it is now given over for us—and the virtue of the Blood unto the remission of sins, for which purpose it is even now in its own way being shed.

187In one sense it could be said that Christ offered Himself to death before the Supper and the Passion. Indeed from the moment of His entry into the world throughout His whole life, He said: Sacrifice and oblation thou wouldst not, but a body thou hast fitted to me: holocaust did not please thee; then I said: Behold I come (Hebr., X. 5-7 and Ps. 39. 8). But this offering, apart from being for the most part invisible, indeed concealed in the beginning in the maternal womb, was not effective, it was merely affective; it was made in purpose, not in act; it was announced in words of the future, not of the present. Hence by these purposes, words or other significations, no actual covenant was contracted with God for the remission of sins; the covenant was merely looked forward to and foretold. Not so in the Supper and the Passion.

188In this sense the Doctors quoted (p. 50 seq.) say that the Eucharist was offered on the Cross, and consecrated, in that on the Cross and from the Cross the seal of ultimate will and freedom was given to the consecration which had been made of the Body unto death and of the Blood unto the remission of sin. This explanation of the words of Trent holds on the supposition that the Council

intended to use the word oblation in the strictest sense, as in contradistinction to immolation and the integral sacrificial action. Should it be thought that the Council used the word oblation in a wider sense, so that offerre sacrificium would be the same as peragere sacrificium, in that case of course the Council does not favour our explanation here, nor in the passage immediately following. Nevertheless the teaching which we have enunciated not only remains true, but also the stricter acceptation of the phrase which we have been explaining.

189For though the sacrifice of Christ in blood is presupposed to our bloodless sacrifice, yet in this bloodless sacrifice, no real immolation is enacted, provided or promised. Indeed our sacrifice is bloodless for the very reason that the unique immolation in blood of the Passion is presupposed to it, as will be shown later in this work.

190For although Christ in the Supper offered bloodlessly, nevertheless because He offered Himself to BE: IMMOLATED BY THE SUFFERING of the Cross, and because He consummated His offering by dying on the Cross, His sacrifice was not bloodless but bloody (recall the definitions above (1) of bloody and bloodless sacrifice. At the same time when He said Do this, He truly instituted and left us a bloodless sacrifice, as the Council of Trent says (D. 938) , and He can also be said to have commenced it, in that He dedicated the actual sacramental rite which we follow as often as we celebrate bloodless sacrifices, because we offer a victim not now to be immolated, but a victim immolated in the past, and now abiding in the glorious state of a victim taken up to God.

191Here we presuppose what will be proved later, that the Mass is simply our present offering of a past immolation enacted in the Passion.

192Of course, under another aspect the Supper is infinitely preeminent over the Mass, just as the principal work of Christ is infinitely preeminent over the ministerial action of His priest, and as the inexhaustible fountain over the streamlet.

193Apart from other reasons possibly not known to us, the two following are fairly obvious: a sacrificial banquet was given us. and a daily repetition of that saving sacrifice

194Nevertheless in the moral order the Supper is important from this (that amongst other things) by the Supper the obligation to suffer and to die for us was voluntarily assumed, as explained in the preceding pages

195When dealing with this oneness of the sacrifice of our Lord, the replies of the post-Tridentine theologians to the Protestants are most certainly right, when they distinguish the all-abundant propitiation provided on the Cross, and the application of this propitiation distributed, so to speak, in the Mass; and in so far they really do meet the Protestant objection against the Mass. These replies however do not throw light upon the relation of the Supper to the Cross, as we have already seen. Moreover even in respect of the Mass itself, they do not throw the fullest light, unless it be shown how this duality of the Cross and the Mass is compatible with the real intrinsic oneness of the two sacrifices. Only when this is definitely established will the mind be set at rest, grasping the interior connection of things, and will faith attain to the understanding which it has sought. I am in full agreement with Cardinal Cienfuegos (Vita abscondita, disp. 6, sect. 1, parag. 2, num. 12, Rome 1728. p. 437) on this point when he writes: "Even though this solution contains the true doctrine, it by no means avoids or overcomes the difficulty stated. " The same eminent theologian had written shortly before (parag. 1, n. 1, p. 427) : "A difficulty arises, . ....one of great complexity, not so simple of solution as some have thought. For the Doctor Eximius, disp. 74, sect. 1, when setting forth the strongest arguments of the heretics, wherewith as with an irresistible machine, they assail the sacrifice of the Mass, wisely remarks: 'This fundamental principle though in appearance weak, obtains very great strength for the Epistle of St. Paul to the Hebrews, where we find a similar argument employed to prove the weakness of the ancient sacrifices, seeing that after all of them, the sacrifice of the Cross was necessary. If effective, this line of argument proves in the same way that this sacrifice alone sufficed to consummate our salvation'. And thus one who studies the subject thoroughly, sees the full difficulty; while one who skims over it lightly and hastily, fails to realize its depth and to credit its full force. " Later, having dealt with the arguments from the Mass, he argues (parag. 3, num. 17, sq.) forcefully on the insufficiency of that solution from the Supper, usually given by modern theologians, unless, he says, we add: "That the sacrifice of the Cross and the bloodless sacrifice are simply one numerically, as our teaching contends". (num. 30. p. 444).

However when he comes to assign and explain this oneness, Cienfuegos is not very satisfying. Call to mind the remarks on this matter on p. 107.

196In his book Lecons sur la messe, which has just reached me, (March 19, 1919) , Rev. P. Batiffol has the following fine passage: "Christ is at the same time Priest and Victim. As Vicum He is immolated, as Priest He offers Himself in sacrifice. ..

Oblation and immolation are distinguished as priest is distinguished from victim, even when priest and victim are one. In this sense we may say that at the Supper Christ is offered without being immolated (meaning: in blood) , seeing that Christ died once only for sin (Rom., VI. m). But at the Supper He offered Himself. ....The oblation of the Supper and the oblation of the Mass have this in common, that they are the oblation of a victim offered at another point of time and space; at the Supper this offering is made of the Victim which will be immolated on the Cross: at the Mass the oblation is made of the Victim which has been immolated on the Cross. " (p. 175-180). The "sacrifice [of the Cross] has already been offered by Christ at the Supper and we in mm offer this sacrifice at the Mass in the form in which Christ offered it at the Supper, and gave us the power to offer it". And the same writer remarks: "This teaching has the advantage of being the actual doctrine of the Liturgy. " (p. 130).

197Call to mind Manning, cited above

198Kata metabolen = per mutationem = change (See Clement of Alexandria, Paedag. 1, 6, P.G. 8, 309). Justin is speaking here of the natural change of the Eucharistic food into our flesh, just like any other food; he is not referring to the conversion of the bread into the Flesh of Christ (Compare F. H. Colson, Notes on Justin Martyr in J. T. S., Jan 1922, p. 166).

199St. Gregory of Nyssa partly says the same thing when he compares the Incarnation and the Eucharist: "In the Incarnation the grace of the Word sanctified THE BODY WHOSE SUBSTANCE WAS BY NOURISHMENT FROM BREAD, AND IN A MANNER ACTUALLY WAS BREAD [bread being changed by vital assimilation into the Body of the Word]; here in like manner the bread [of the Eucharist] is consecrated by the word of God and by prayer, not indeed that it should become the Body and Blood of the Word by way of food and drink, but as changed immediately into the Body of the Word, according to what was said by the Word: This is my body (Orat. catech., c. 37. P.G. 45, 97).

200Robertus Paululus, Isaac's contemporary, follows him word for word practically. He links the victim of bread and wine which is seen, with the Victim of the Body and Blood of Christ, which is believed or is the object of faith, in this way: ' WE OFFER VISIBLE VICTIMS OF BREAD AND WINE ON A VISIBLE ALTAR. ....and all this is done still outside (the tabernacle). ..... The second altar which is inside (the tabernacle). ....the golden altar signifies the altar of faith (that is the altar which is invisible, and hence to be believed not seen). ....On this altar (of faith) the priest offers. ....the invisible Victim of Flesh and Blood". (De officiis ecclesiasiasticis, 1, 2, c. 26-27, P.L.. }77, 427-429)

201Meanwhile in his Antirrheticum contra Eusebium, c. 45, Parag. 2 (Spicil. Solesm. 1, 440-441) St. Nicephorus of Constantinople had written: "What we also now OFFER IN SYMBOL (that is the bread and wine) , . ....we really receive, changed into the Body and Blood of Christ, mystically and invisibly".

202How careful Cabasilas is to exclude all intrinsic or absolute reality from the sacrifice of bread and wine, is plain from another passage. "What is offered in sacrifice is not bread, but the very Body of Christ. ....That immolation, as considered in the subject, is not in the bread, but in the Body of Christ; it is not, and it is not called, the sacrifice of the bread, but the sacrifice of the Lamb of God" (Liturgiae expositio, c. 33, P.G. 150, 440). The immolation of which he is speaking, the only real immolation which he admits in our sacrifice, is the immolation in the Blood of the Passion, as is absolutely clear throughout the whole chapter. I think then that in the De sacrosancto missae sacrificio commentarius (Antwerp 1574) , Matthaeus Galenus Vestcapellius does not fully appreciate the mind of Cabasilas though professing to follow him, for to the natural substances of the bread and wine he attributes the elements of some kind of new victim, imperfect and preliminary, which is to pass subsequently into the perfect Victim of the Body and Blood of Christ, which succeeds it. In other words he thinks that in our sacrifice there must be some kind of destruction of the bread and wine, and this a real immolation: "Let us teach then that the victim of bread and wine is not and does not remain quite immune from destruction. " (op. cit., c. 7, fol. 104). He seems to place this destruction in the transubstantiation by which the bread ceases to be. His reason for this theory was that he had already included in his definition of sacrifice the actual effecting of a change in the subject, and he thought that he could not satisfy this definition unless he pointed to some new change or immolation or destruction on that subject. He did not want to assign this in the Mass to Christ, as being injurious to Him, and so he allotted the change to the bread: this change being, so to speak, a preamble to the other Victim of the Body and Blood of Christ. But Galenus is not consistent here; he loses sight of his cardinal principle, that immolation is not to be sought in the Mass and is not lacking in Christ, but it is simply that immolation which is supplied from the Cross. Kramp (Die Opferanschauungen der rom. Messliturgie) resurrected this theory.

203Cologne 1544. In the composition of the Antididagama, John Gropper, intrepid champion of the Catholic Faith in his Fatherland, later created Cardinal by Paul V, was very prominent.

204Here as usual Vasquez understands immolation in d e sense of sacrificial action, or the offering of the thing immolated (Compare disp. 222, C. 8, n. 66 and 67).

205Here the sign is MORAL, expressing an affection of the mind; it is not necessarily a MYSTIC sign, that is, typically representing an antitype, as was the case in the ancient sacrifices in respect of the sacrifice of Christ (Compare Suarez De Incarnatione, pars 2, in 3 S. 48, 3, commentarius, n. 2).

206Hence a verbal or written intimation of giving, as happens (especially nowadays) in ordinary contracts, would not suffice; for, as we have said, Sacrifice is primarily an action and not a prayer; the alienation or the handing over of the gift transmitted from myself to God, must be performed by an act of transfer, and not merely enunciated in written or oral words.

207As the offering of the Body and Blood of Christ was represented in figure by the sacrifice of Melchisedech, and by the sacrifices of the Old Law (even when Christ Himself was present) , but was not actually offered

208See very rare exceptions in K. G. Goetz, Die heutige Abendmahlsfrage, 2, p. 185 foll

209To be discussed in Book II.

210This is all the more justifiable, seeing that from the history

of the Council we know that in the definition it did not desire to settle the more difficult questions centering on the offering of the Supper. Upon this Pallavicini writes: "In respect of the offering of Christ, the fathers only took into consideration generally accepted opinions. Setting aside matters of controversy among Catholics, they merely say what we now have in the definition, that in the Supper our Redeemer offered Himself in sacrifice to the Father under the appearance of bread and wine; the Council did not state by what kind of sacrifice He so offered Himself" (Hist. Concil. Trid., 1. 18, c. 5, n. 5).

211Still later we have a new edition of these Acta compiled by S. Ehses, entitled Concilium Tridentinum, Diariorum, actorum, epistularum, tractatuum nova collectio (tom. 8, 1919 p. 755-788)

212For had Christ celebrated a propitiatory sacrifice preliminary to the sacrifice of the Cross it could not have been vain or empty or of less value than the Cross (for the same Christ would personally and immediately offer both) : therefore man, for whose atonement it was offered, would necessarily have been there and then redeemed (for at the Supper Christ said that His Blood was HERE AND NOW shed for many UNTO THE REMISSION of sins). Hence man would have been redeemed before the sacrifice of the Redemption, which of course no one believes (Acta Genuina, 2, p. 82-86).

Moreover they realized the great difficulty raised by any such doctrine of a preliminary propitiatory sacrifice, from the teaching of the Epistle to the Hebrews, that Christ offered once, and that He made propitiation for us only once by way of sacrifice; see the passages cited. There were indeed some who said that a previous propitiation of the sacramental Supper would not be detrimental in any way to the propitiation of the Cross, seeing that all the acts of Christ were equally meritorious even before the Cross. This reply did not satisfy the objectors, and justly so; because a meritorious act and a propitiatory sacrifice are altogether different. By a meritorious act as such, no contract in favour of a third party is entered into between the person who merits and God, but by a sacrifice which is propitiatory for others a contact is entered into. If such a contract is not void (and in the case of the sacrifice of Christ, this would be blasphemous) it must wipe off the debt to the payment of which it was directed. Now the sacrifice of Christ was directed in act, and in the present, TO SATISFY FOR MANY (that is for the multitude in need of expiation) UNTO THE REMISSION OF SINS

213The Bishop of Leira expressly relied on St. Thomas (3 S. 83, 5, 3m) where He counts the Supper as the third of the parts of the Passion. St. Thomas in this place had already said: "The sacrifice of the Supper was propitiatory because of the Victim offered on the Cross".

214Christ offered Himself in the Supper in an expiatory manner; for the Victim is one and the same, and the sacrifice one and the same with that of the Cross. " (p. 85).

215"Christ offered Himself in the Supper which offering was the same with that of the Cross" (p. 85). Ten years before, between the XIV and XV session, several bishops and theologians had anticipated them. Among the theologians Franciscus Sonnius: "Then Christ began to offer in the Supper, and He finished on the Cross. ....It was one and the same offering which was made in the Supper and on the Cross. " (Acta Genuina, 1, 612). Similarly Jacobus Ferrusius: "The Supper was a true sacrifice in respect of the death which was impending, and which subsequently took place on the Cross. " (p. 623). Refuting the Bishop of Bitonto the Bishop of Lodi said words worthy of record: The Bishop of Bitonto had said that "Christ did not offer Himself in the Supper, because otherwise His death would have been in vain, because the sacrifice of the Supper would have sufficed to reconcile us to God. " The Bishop of Lodi solves the difficulty in one statement: "The sacrifice of the Supper and of the Cross is the same. " (p. 641).

From this it does not follow that the death of Christ was superfluous: for the Supper and the Cross were but one sacrifice.

216Some of the fathers had anticipated the Archbishop in rejecting the order of Aaron in Christ, but none so effectively

217How the manner of offering is different in both, was already shown

218Hence it would seem that absolute sacrifice must be excluded from the Mass,—I mean any teaching which would make it contain in itself, even apart from the Cross, every element of sacrifice- the Mass must be said not only to be a sacrifice relative to the Cross (for all the sacrifices of the Old Law were relative to the Cross, which they: represented as to come, while they were themselves absolute sacrifices) , but also and as a matter of course ESSENTIALLY relative, in the sense that without the Cross it would not be a sacrifice at all. However, we must repeat what we have said already, that our inference from the trend of the Decree has value just in so far as the Synod is taken to use the word oblatio in the restricted meaning (compare our remarks in this connection on page 139). If the word oblatio, be taken there in a wide meaning, our conclusion will not stand. Study for yourself and see whether the less literal exegesis of; the words of Trent is safe. However if you refuse to accept the stricter exegesis, be careful later and do not advance it against us.

219Cardinal Cienfuegos thought that the numerical oneness of the Supper and the Passion could be inferred from the teaching of the Council in another way: "The priesthood whereby the sacrifice of the Cross was to be offered by Christ the Lord, according to the Council, was of such a character and order that it was not to be ended by His death. Nevertheless because this priesthood was not to be ended by the death, etc. But it would be ended according to the order or rite in which He offered in blood, " were it other than the priesthood according to the order of Melchisedech in bread and wine (Vita abscondita, disp. 6, sect. 2 parag. 1, Rome 1728, p. 450). It would be impossible to deny that there is some force in the appeal to the words of Trent. Still I fear that Cienfuegos strains the logical connection of the sentences too much, and thus the oneness or absolute identity of this priesthood is urged farther than the definition itself requires.

220We are unable to say whether or not Canisius concluded from this to the unity of the sacrifice of our Lord as we maintain it.

221Possibly an objection may be raised from the tenor of the Decree, by quoting the words of the Council, which introduce the teaching on the Mass: "Although (Christ) by His death was to offer Himself to God and the Father on the altar of the Cross, in order to redeem us there. ....Nevertheless in the Last Supper. …declaring that He was a priest forever according to the order of Melchisedech, He offered His Body and Blood to God the Father under the appearance of bread and wine". From which one might argue as follows: The Council places before us a sacrifice to be enacted on the Cross; it opposes to this sacrifice, by the use of the adversative particles although. ....nevertheless, that sacrifice which was previously offered in the Supper. Hence it places two sacrifices before us, not one. For if it says that Christ offered the one NOTWITHSTANDING THE OTHER, certainly the two are not one sacrifice. If they were one, neither would be enacted without the other, hence the adversative particles (although. .…nevertheless) would be out of place; rather they should be consecutive particles, since or because: so that, if it held the oneness of the Supper and the Cross the Council should have said something like: because He was about to enact the sacrifice of the Cross, he offered sacrifice in the Supper; whereas what it actually said comes to this: although he was about to make sacrifice on the Cross, nevertheless He also desired to sacrifice in the Supper. Hence the Council absolutely teaches two sacrifices of Christ.

But against this conclusion, we have first of all the clearest testimonies that the Council had no intention of defining anything in this matter, and furthermore that the principal authors of the Decree thought that the Decree would be best verified if one held to this singular unity of the sacrifice of our Lord.

Secondly, it is easy to show that the oneness by no means makes the adversative particles although. ....nevertheless out of place. For although the Supper was one sacrifice with the Cross, nevertheless the Cross could undoubtedly have been a sacrifice without the Supper, namely by the addition of any other liturgical rite whatsoever. Although therefore Christ could have enacted the sacrifice of the Cross without the Supper, nevertheless He desired that through the Supper it should be Melchisedechian.

Thirdly and particularly, we must keep in mind the scope of the Council—to do away with Protestant error. The Protestants, as a base for their attack on the sacrifice of the Eucharist, used the reality of the sacrifice of the Cross, and the oneness of the sacrifice of our Lord, both taken together. The Council answered them by stating two points of faith. First, in respect of the Supper: although the Cross is a most true sacrifice (this we all believe) , nevertheless we must believe that Christ as priest according to the order of Melchisedech, willed that the Supper should be also a sacrifice (The Council did not state whether it is numerically one with the sacrifice of the Cross or not.) Second, in respect of the Mass: by the words Do this Christ instituted the bloodless sacrifice, commemorative of His death, and LEFT it to be celebrated by His Church to the end of time. Apart from these two points of faith, to be held necessarily, the Council proposed nothing in the beginning of the first chapter; for these two principles were quite sufficient to refute the error of the heretics.

Some more recent critics after Westcott-Hort (The New Testament in the Original Greek, Introduction, Appendix I, 2 ed., p. 63 and 64) deny the authenticity of the verses 19b-20 of St. Luke: "which is given for you, " etc. Hence we must first discuss the question of the text as we have it from experts in palaeography.

(1) Verses 19b-20 are given by all the Greek Codices, with the single exception of the Codex Bezae (D) , which is bilingual; and (2) by the following translations, the Peschittho (Syriac) , the Latin Vulgate, and c, q and f old Latin versions.

Moreover, these verses are admitted not only by the Greek writers, Eusebius (Canones Evangeliorum. P.G. 22, 1280-1281) , Basil (Moralia, Regula 21, C. 3. P.G. 31, 739) , Cyril of Alexandria (in h. 1, 1. P.G. 72, 908912, coll. 905 C, where it is evident that verses 17-18 were not known to Cyril) , but also by Tertullian (Adv. Marcionem, 1. 4, c. 40. P.L. 2, 461) , who draws an argument from them.

Verses 19b-20 are simply omitted by D of the Greek codices, and of the Latin, in addition to d, by ff2 i I. The Latin codices b and e transpose the verses, omitting 19b-20, and placing verses 17-18 immediately after 19a. The Curetonian Syriac Version omits from verse 19 the word corresponding to the Greek word didomenon (given) in verse 19, omits verse 20, and replaces it by verses-18, after verse 19.

The Sinaitic Syriac gives the whole verse 19, following on with "in like manner after he had supped" from verse 20, then verse 17, then "this is the chalice the new testament in my blood, " then verse 18.

It is from these total or partial omissions of verses 19b-20 that the aforesaid critics argue that the verses were interpolated from II Cor., XI, 24-25.

But against such a conclusion, and arguing strongly that verses 19b-20 are genuine, we maintain:

(1) The omission by many, though not all, of the Versions, is not to be accepted as against all the Greek codices (D alone excepted, where the Greek text is not independent of the Latin).

(2) Suppose the verses genuine, it is easy to explain how they were omitted from some codices; if they are not genuine, it is very difficult to understand how they crept into the other codices.

The genuineness supposed, it is easy to explain the omissions. For they were considered by the translators as an unnecessary reduplication of verses 17-18, as is plain from b, e and the syriacs (cur sin). Hence we see THAT SOME OTHER CODICES, PARTICULARLY THE SYRIAC PESCHITTHO, WHERE 19b-20 ARE RETAINED, HAVE OMITTED VERSES 17-18.

But if it is denied that they are genuine, their presence is difficult of explanation. For in the first place: if they are interpolated from St. Paul, why is it that in all the codices, after the consecration of the chalice, the words "this do ye" are wanting? Again why and whence did the phrase "which shall be shed for you" creep into all the codices which give the longer form? Secondly, how to meet the exegetical difficulty (which according to our adversaries arose in the shorter form from the apparent in-version in the order of the chalice and the bread). How, I say, would it be possible that an interpolation was made with such common agreement by the Greek copyists, an interpolation which would increase rather than diminish the difficulty: by the doubling of the chalice?

(3) If one looks closely into the matter, the longer form seems to be postulated by the order and sequence of the sentences, for two reasons: firstly, that just as the couplet 17-18 corresponds to the couplet 15-16, so verse 20 should correspond to verse 19; and in the second place that the new and true pasch should be contrasted with the legal and figurative one, as will be explained later.

Hence it is that besides nearly all Catholic exegetes, among whom special mention should be made of Berning (Die Einsetzung der heiligen Eucharistie, 1901, p. 24-47) , P. Batiffol (Etudes d'histoire et de theologie positive, 2e serie 3, p. 22-28) , Libreton (art. Eucharistie in Dictionnaire Apologetique, col. 1553-1554) , Ruch (art. Eucharistie d'apres la sainte Ecriture, in D. T. C. col. 10731077) : many non-Catholics, even rationalists, uphold the integral text. Thus in France: J. Reville (Les origines de l'Eucharistie, 1908, p. 98-102) ; Goguel (L'Eucharistie des origines a Justin Martyr, 1910, p. 108-117). In Germany Weizacker (Des Apostolische Zeitalter der christlichen Kirche, 2, 1892, p. 575 foll.—implicitly) ; Julicher (Zur Geschichte der Abendmahlsfeier in der altesten Kirche, in Theologischen Abhandlungen C. V. Weizsacker gewidmet, 1892, p. 325, n. 1: "Still I hold the two verses on both intrinsic and extrinsic grounds to be of Luke genuinely, and their deletion to be a methodical error") ; Shultzen (Das Abendmahl im N. T., 1895, p. 18) ; R. A. Hoffmann (Abendmahlsgedanken Jesu Christi, 1896, p. 9-21: "We must, for all that, decline to accept, as exceedingly precarious, the deletion of 19b and 20 by Westcott-Hort. With this omission it would be quite an unintelligible text; while on the other hand the progression of the verses in the corresponding manuscripts is completely intelligible") ; formerly, too, C. Clemen (Der Ursprung des hl. Abendmahls, 1898, p. 21-22) ; Holtzmann (Handcommentar zum Neuen Testament, Die Synoptiker, 3, p. 409) ; Tischendorf-Gebhardt; Nestle; W. Larfield (Griechische Synopse der vier neutestamentlichen Evangelien, 1911) ; H. von Soden (Die Schriften des Neuen Testaments, 2 Teil, 1913, p. 369). In England, Scrivener (Introduction to Crit. of N. T., 1874, p. 579 foll. coll., p. 482) , after having discussed the whole text, maintained the textus receptus. Plummer today (art. Lord's Supper, DB. 3, 146, and A critical and exegetical commentary on the Gospel according to St. Luke, 4, p. 496-497) does not dare to reject the authenticity of the verses, on account of the great weight of external testimonies ("the overwhelming external evidence of almost all MSS. and Versions, " Commentary, p. 496) , but prefers to leave the matter in doubt.

Against the authenticity stand among French writers, Loisy (L'Evangile et L'Eglise, 2, p. 115-116; Autour d'un petit livre, p. 237238; Les evangiles synoptiques, t. 2, p. 526538). Outside of France: Brandt (Die evangelische Geschichte und der Ursprung des Christentums, 1893, p. 301) ; Erich Haupt (Ueber die ursprungliche Form und Bedeutung der Abendmahlsworte, 1805, p. 6-9) ; B. Weiss (Die Evangelien des Markus and Lukas, 1901, p. 634) ; Zahn (Einleitung in das Neue Testament, 2, t. 2, p. 356-360) ; Andersen (Das Abendmahl, 2, p. 37) ; Franz Debelius (Das Abendmahl, 1911, p. 97-101) ; and lately, having changed his opinion, C. Clemen (Der Einfluss der Mysterienreligionen auf das alteste Christentum, 1913, p. 19). Among English writers, Sanday (D. B. 2, 636-637) and J. Armitage Robinson (art. Eucharist, in Cheyne, Encyclopedia Biblica, 2, col. 1418-1419).

The above-mentioned authors have quoted many others in support of their view; I have not been able to consult their works. We must add finally that Spitta stood against the authenticity of the single verse XXII, 20 (Zur Geschichte und Litteratur des Urchristentums, I" 1893, p. 297-298). Meanwhile note: even though the text were not genuine, it would be quite justifiable for a theologian to draw from it an argument resting, not on Scripture but on valid tradition.

222Failure to state a thing is not to deny it. Many things are not expressly asserted, and yet are tacitly admitted. There are also many cases where things are not even implied, and yet are not by that denied.

223That the utterance of Christ is here assumed repeated after the Supper in practically the same words as before the Supper, though in a different sense, should give no difficulty, when we remember I) though the two meanings are different, they are not mutually exclusive: indeed one comes after the other as the antitype follows the type; the repetition helps in a great measure to make this clear; and 2) such repetitions are most fitting to the solemnity and grandeur of the liturgical style—Christ adopts it here, as He does in St. John in the discourse after the Supper. The sacerdotal prayer in particular is replete with these duplicated utterances.

224The Chronicon Paschale, P.G. 92, 80 gives his words: "That Christ did not deceive at the beginning or at the end is evident. For He who had just previously said: From this time I will not eat the pasch, fittingly (convenienter) partook of the Supper before the Pasch. He did not eat the Pasch, He suffered it. For [the pasch] was not the time of His eating". Suppose it were to be said that here the supper in question is neither the legal supper (excluded positively by Hippolytus) , nor the sacramental Supper (as we understand it) , but some ordinary supper, then the assertion of Hippolytus does not make sense—that Christ very fittingly partook of the Supper before the Pasch of His death, He did not eat this Pasch, He suffered it. For if it were merely an ordinary supper, there is nothing more fitting in Christ partaking of a last ordinary supper than of a second last, or any previous supper. However, as regards the mind of Hippolytus, the second argument from Luke XXII. 15 is unanswerable.

225In the Commentarius ad evangelium Matthaei and in the work De feria quinta majore et de institutione eucharistiae. The words of Hippolytus on Luke XXII. 15 are: "He referred to His Passion, in the likeness of which on the day before He suffered, He took bread and wine and broke, instructing them that they were not to immolate and eat the lamb with the Jews. For He it was who like a lamb was to die for them, on the very day predicted for Him by the prophets. " Dionysius Bar Salibi couples two Syrian writers with Hippolytus. They are in favour of the same interpretation (naturally enough he does not agree with them in regard to the omission of the legal lamb: for the Syrian liturgies all agree that Christ celebrated the legal lamb. We may mention before Dionysius' time the Liturgia Dioscori Liturgia Philoxeni I, Liturgia Philoxeni II, Liturgia Mosis Bar-Kepha. R. 2, 288; 302, 312; 393; compare B. LVIII-LIX).

Joannes Philopones is especially to be linked with Hippolytus in this matter: "In the mystic Supper Christ did not eat the typical or legal pasch of the Old Testament, but the proper and true Pasch of the New Testament. " And again: "If that were the pasch of the New Testament which was given to the disciples, it was of this pasch that He said: With desire have I desired to eat this pasch with you before I suffer (Disputatio de paschate, ed. B. Corderii S.J. Vindob. 1630, p. 298-299 and 292, compare p. 291). Similarly too, an anonymous Greek writer, mentioned by Photius in his Bibliotheca (cod. 115. P.G. 103, 392) , excludes the legal lamb, saying that Christ only ate the sacramental Supper in the Cenacle. Miletius, the reputed author of a pseudo-Damascene Epistle, says the same thing. We also find it in a pseudo-Athanasian work De azymis (P.G. 26, 1329). On the similarity between these two works, see R. S. R., Oct. Dec. 1916, p. 472.

There are others who, while not explicitly teaching the Eucharistic partaking of Christ, nevertheless admit it implicitly, when, like the authorities just cited, they say that Christ did not eat the paschal lamb. Therefore they must hold that Christ desired (Luke XXII. 15) to eat the pasch of His own Flesh and Blood. So earlier than Hippolytus and Irenaeus, we have St. Claudius Apollinaris, Bishop of Hierapolis, implicitly supporting us in a work by himself on the Pasch. His words are quoted in the Chronicon Paschale (loc. cit.). After the time of Hippolytus, Clement of Alexandria too in his book on the pasch, quoted in the same place (col. 81) , speaks in a like sense: "The Lord did not eat the typical pasch immolated by the Jews, as in former years" since "He Himself was the Pasch, the Lamb of God, led like a lamb to the slaughter, ". ...."since He was the Pasch immolated by the Jews. " Later we have Peter the martyr of Alexandria, quoted in the same place (col. 77). His complete work entitled De eo quod recte Judaei decimam quartam mensis lunae statuerint was apparently in the possession of Petavius, (De doctrina, r, 12. C. 15, Antwerp 1703, t. 3, 240-251) in its entirety. After Peter of Alexandria comes another anonymous Greek writer mentioned by Photius in his Bibliotheca (cod. 116, col. 393) , and the author of the Chronicon paschale (loc. cit.) , who both followed this teaching; from that time on numerous other Greek writers expressed themselves in a like manner, in their dispute with the Latins on the leavened and unleavened bread: V. g. Peter of Antioch, Epist. ad Archiep. Gradensem, n. 13 sq. Ep. ad Michael. Caerul. n. 22. P.G. 120, 768 sq. ; 813. The opponents of the Armenians held the same, as Isaac Invectiva l contra Armenos, c. 7, parag. 3 and Invectiva II contra Armenos, c. 10, 3 P.G. 132, 1177-1180, and 1225.

226Compare those other words immediately after the verses 22-26 in the same chapter of Leviticus: "THE MYSTIC PASCH which He ate with His disciples. . ."

227Bar Salibi advances from his own Monophysitic sect Jacobus Edissenus (+ 708) , Cyriacus Andochenus (+ 817) , Moses Bar Kepha (+ 903) , and agrees with them (ibid., and ch. 18, p. 96). Though he quotes the words of St. Ephraem and Jacobus Edissenus, Dionysius does not quote the words of Cyriacus or Moses Bar Kepha. Lately however the Explanatio Mysteriorum of Moses Bar Kepha has been published and translated into English by R. H. Connolly and H. W. Codrington (Two commentaries on the Jacobite Liturgy. . ..

Texts and English translation, Oxford, 1913). In this work the actual words of Moses are given, and Cyriacus is mentioned as having said something similar (see p. 53 and 55).

228See p. 75, above

229Though the mediaeval theologians usually did, St. Thomas for example 3 S. 81, 1. sed contra.

230The passage runs: "How are we to interpret the saying of Christ in St. Matthew: I will not drink from henceforth of this fruit of the vine, until that day when I shall drink with you new in the kingdom of my Father. Some construe the fable of the millennium from this verse; according to this, Christ would reign corporally in the millennium, and would then drink of the wine which from that time on (the time of the Supper) , He will not drink until the consummation of the world. But we should know that the bread which the Lord broke and gave to the disciples, is the Body of the Lord our Saviour, for He said to them: Take ye and eat: this is my body. And the chalice is that of which He likewise said: Drink ye all of this, for this is my blood of the new testament, . ..

which shall be shed for many. ....If then the bread which comes down from heaven is the Body of the Lord, and the wine which He gave to His disciples is the Blood of the New Testament, which was shed for many unto the remission of sins, let us cast aside Jewish fables, let us go up with the Lord into the large guest chamber furnished and swept, and there let us receive from Him the chalice of the new testament; and there celebrating the pasch with Him, LET US BE INEBRIATED BY HIM WITH THE WINE OF SOBRIETY: for the kingdom of God is not food and drink, but justice and joy and peace in the Holy Spirit; For Moses did not give us true bread but the Lord Jesus, Himself both table companion and banquet, who eats with us and is eaten by us. WE DRINK OF HIS BLOOD, AND WITHOUT HIM WE. CANNOT DRINK, and every day in His sacrifice, we tread the blood-red grapes from the fruit of the true vine, and from them we drink the new wine of the kingdom of the Father. ....The patriarch Jacob also desired to eat this bread, saying: If the Lord shall be with me and shall give me bread to eat, and raiment to put on; for as many of us as are baptized in Christ, put on Christ and eat the bread of angels, and hear God saying: My food is to do the will of him that sent me, that I may do his work. LET US THEREFORE DO THE WILL OF THE FATHER WHO SENT US, THAT WE MAY DO HIS WORK; AND CHRIST WILL DRINK HIS BLOOD WITH US IN THE KINGDOM OF HIS CHURCH.

231Origen's words are: "The kingdom of God is not the food of those who have become worthy of the celestial bread and of the bread of angels, and of the food of which the Saviour says: My food is to do the will of him that sent me, that I may do his work. That we shall eat and drink in the kingdom of God is clear from many Scripture sayings, and from this in particular: Blessed is he who will eat bread in the kingdom of God. Hence this pasch will be fulfilled in the kingdom of God, Jesus will eat and drink of it with His disciples. ....Jacob too makes known how God gives bread, when he says: If God shall be with us, and shall give me bread to eat and raiment to put on, of all the things which thou, O Lord wilt give me, I will offer tithes to thee. Similarly we find in the Gospel of St. John Moses gave you not bread from heaven, but my Father giveth you the true bread from heaven. Now indeed the Pasch is not fulfilled yet, but it will be when we shall be prepared to receive the full Pasch which He came to fulfill, who came not to destroy the law but to fulfill it; to fulfill it now as in a glass darkly (i. e. obscurely) , but to fulfill it then face to face (i. e. openly and plainly) , when that which is perfect shall have come. If therefore we also desire to receive from Jesus who is wont to give it, the bread of benediction, let us go into the city to the house of a certain man, where Jesus makes the Pasch with His disciples, prepared by those whom He knows, let us ascend to the upper part of the house, large, furnished, and well swept, where taking the chalice from the Father and giving thanks, He gives to those who have gone up with Him, saying: Drink, for this is my blood of the new testament, which is drunk and is poured out, drunk by the disciples, poured out unto the remission of the sins of those for whom it is poured out and by whom it is drunk. Would you know how it is poured out, with these words, compare also those others: The charity of God is poured out in our hearts. Now if the blood of the testament is poured out into our hearts unto the remission of sins, when that Blood which we drink is poured into our hearts, all the sins of which we have heretofore been guilty, are remitted and wiped out. Moreover He who having taken the chalice says: Drink ye all of this, does not abandon us who drink of it, rather HE DRINKS IT WITH US, SINCE HE IS IN EACH ONE OF US; FOR ALONE AND WITHOUT HIM, WE CAN NEITHER EAT OF THAT BREAD NOR DRINK OF THE FRUIT OF THAT TRUE VINE. And wonder not that He is the bread, and that at the same time He eats the bread with us, that He is the drink of the fruit of the vine, and that at the same time He drinks with us. For the word of God is omnipotent, it is known by various names, and is without number according to the multiplicity of His power". Origenes in Matthaeum. Juxta seriem veteris interpretationis commentariorum Origenis in Matthaeum. (n. 86. P.G. 13, 1735-1737).

232A comparison between Jerome and Origen clearly shows that the passage from Jerome is not to be interpreted in the sense that Knabenbauer (l. c.) following Suarez (De Eucharistia in 3 S. 81 1, commentarius, n. I) thinks probable: "He ate the legal lamb or other foods, and gave Himself to others to be eaten. " For Jerome himself gives his own interpretation in his Commentarius in Evangelium Matthaei, 1 4, c. 26. P.L. 196) quite in keeping with Origen, where he says ". ....When the Jews arrive at the belief in God the Father, and the Father leads them to the Son, then will the Lord drink of their wine, and according to the similitude of Joseph reigning in Egypt, He will be inebriated with His brethren. "

In Gregory Nazianzen we have a similar interpretation embracing

the time of the Church on earth and the everlasting age of the heavenly kingdom (Or. in Sanctum Pascha, c. 23. P.G. 36, 656).

St. Ambrose also in the book De Mysteriis, 57 (P.L. 15, 408) wrote of the Eucharist: "This is certain THAT IN US HE EATS AND DRINKS. This explanation passed on to several other ecclesiastical writers, for instance, the Latin author of the Opus Imperfectum in Matthaeum, hom. 47, placed amongst the works of Chrysostom, P.G. 56, 899; Paschasius Radbertus, Expositio in Matthaeum, 1, 12. P.L. 120, 895-896, Lib. de corpore et sanguine Domini, c. 21, n. 2, col. 1331, and the Epistola ad Frudegardum, col. 1358-1359; Bruno of Asti, Commentarius in Matthaeum, pars. 4. P.L. 165, 291. Hence last of all we are not surprised to find Honorius of Autun, writing "Christ true priest according to the order of Melchisedech, who had formed His Body in the womb of a Virgin, alone consecrates also this same Body through every Catholic priest, AND HE ALONE PARTAKES IN HIS MEMBERS; He alone too gives it to His own He who ascends into the heavens consummated in His elect. Consequently while no priest, but Christ Himself through the ministry of His priests, is worthy to consecrate His Body, this Body which is also received BY NONE BUT CHRIST ALONE IN HIS FRIENDS, is consecrated no less by the ministry of the most sinful. ....than by that of the most holy. " (Eucharisticon, c. 6. P.L. 172, 1253).

233The Benedictine editor says that the reading 'praegustato' is found in very few codices (P.L. 34, 37) , but five other well known codices (among them the Excerpta ex operibus S. Augustini, in the revision of Pius Knoell, Sorbonne 1885, excerpt. 253, p. 822) give 'per gustatum, ' while three others have 'per gustum'. And as a matter of fact, considering the sequence of the sentences in which are enumerated the various signs whereby God manifested His designs conformably to man's senses (smell, taste, touch, hearing) , the reading given in Migne's Latin Fathers appears the least probable. Meantime it is interesting to note that Knabenbauer (1. c.) considers that apart from Chrysostom, no patristic authority except that of Jerome and Augustine, favours our Lord's partaking; whereas for us, both Jerome and Augustine are doubtful authorities in this matter.

234Walafrid Strabo (In Ruth III. 3, P.L.. 113, 536) to whom later writers erroneously attributed the words of Rabanus, seems to have implicitly followed this teaching. Compare In Leviticum VIII. 14 and 24. P.L.. 113, 321-322, where he follows Hesychius, of whom above.

235Honorius of Autun (Eucharisticon, c. 4. P.L. 172, 1252) : "The Body of Christ is eaten by the Body of Christ". He may have meant that Christ in the Last Supper partook of the sacrament. His style is intricate, and it is possible that his meaning may be Christ as eaten by the Church. It must be admitted too that this meaning conforms better to the context

236He was so convinced of this teaching that he does not consider it worth while to quote early authorities

237Alexander of Hales, Albert the Great, St. Bonaventure, (l. c.) , Peter of Tarentasia say the same, but do not mention the names of opponents.

238Luther completely denied the sacrifice of the Lord's Supper, necessarily then he denies that our Lord partook of a sacrifice whose existence he denied. After Luther another Protestant, John Faens, (mentioned by Le Brun, Explic. de la messe, t. 3, p. 546) wrote a whole treatise on the subject denying our Lord's partaking. The work was entitled Christus incoenatus. The Catholics still maintained the opposite opinion.

239The earliest liturgies of the Copts are in Greek, for they were before the Monophysite schism.

240The principle invoked by the Council of Toledo (A. D. 681) is here applicable: It Insists on Eucharistic communion for the celebrant "For what kind of sacrifice will that be, of which the celebrating priest is nor a partaker?"

241"Some will no doubt maintain, quoting Aquinas, that the Lord partook of His own Flesh and Blood under the sacramental species. On dogmatic principles we reject this opinion. Dogmatic principles, as Schegg rightly says, are plainly in conflict with the idea of such communion. The sacred banquet by its aim and essence excludes the feeding on himself of the distributor of the banquet". Compare ibid., p. 241: ". ....a view difficult if not impossible to explain either exegetically or dogmatically."

242I think St. Thomas (3 S. 81, 1, 3m) has this m mind when he says that delight came to Christ from the partaking: he had first inserted the teaching of Rabanus in the body of the article, and what follows is intimately joined "He rejoiced because He was assured of the Resurrection. " The Eucharist is really an eschatological sacrament, as will be shown at length in the third book. Hence by worthy partaking we drink our own glory, by unworthy partaking our damnation. Christ drank of the reward of God which was to come, the joys of the kingdom,

243As fellow-guest, He linked us up with Himself, making us of one flesh and blood with Him, not only in the manner in which fellow-guests and companions are linked, in the East particularly (compare Wellhausen Skizzen und Vorarbeiten, p. 122) , as one indivisible mass, so to speak, moulded apart from others, but also in a more special manner whereby the partakers of a sacrificial banquet coalesce into the one family of God (cf. chap. 1). As our banquet or food, He incorporates Himself with us in a manner to be explained later.

244"Some say that the partaking of Christ was spiritual, for they hold that the union there was an act of love, and the effect was not in Himself but in the members: that just as Christ did not merit for Himself but for us, so by virtue of that partaking He merited that the members of His body should be more united to Himself". " (But) if that were true, it would have its effect on one not eating and on one who was sleeping" (Bonaventure, 4 D. 9, 1, 4). We read very much the same in Alexander of Hales (Summa. pars 4, q. 44, art. 1, mbr. 1. ed. 82, tom. 3). However the objections of Bonaventure and Alexander will not stand. For apart from the fact that there is no question here of merit, but of causal influx, and not of a greater degree of our union with Christ, but of a radical possibility of such union, it by no means follows that the effect of the grace would be found "in one not eating and m one who was sleeping": indeed, although in respect of our Eucharistic sanctification, the partaking of Christ is by way of principal cause of that sanctification, still it does not take away the need of the proximate cause, which is our own partaking. 245The objection runs: "He did not partake of this sacrament, because He would have received in vain. " St. Thomas replies: "That partaking did not effect spiritual nutriment in Him, but it signified it, for no one is as perfectly refreshed in Himself as He is". (4. D. 11, 1, 3m).

246The remarks of C. H. Huyghe (op. cit., p. 166) on Hebr., VIII. 5, are worthy of note: "The sacrificial slaying did not take place in the holy of holies, BUT AFTER THE SLAYING THE BLOOD WAS OFFERED THERE. So too, speaking of Christ as our Pontiff, St. Paul presupposes the sacrificial slaying as having taken place (VII. 27, IX. 12-14, 25-27, X. 12, 14). Between the two cases there is indeed a difference: whereas the RITE OF OFFERING of the blood in the sanctuary in the Old Law pertained to the form of the sacrifice, we could not say this of Christ's offering in heaven, and indeed our Epistle implies such a difference. ....calling the death of Christ both sacrifice and offering. Hence the offering made in heaven presupposes not only the slaying but also the complete sacrificial offering". This last statement is absolutely true. However, two inferences follow from it: I) If the "rite of offering" as well as the slaying took place beforehand, where did the rite of offering take place but at the Supper? 2) If the heavenly offering had no part in the constitution of the sacrifice, whence does it derive the great importance assigned to it by the Apostle in such sublime words, unless by the actual transmission and introduction into the celestial temple there is constituted the divine acceptance and appropriation, by which the sacrifice is consummated and brought to the highest point of perfection? With regard to the actual rite of Leviticus a more complete treatment will come shortly.

247Here the language of Theophilus is rather involved and requires careful interpretation. I do not think that Cosmas Indicopleustes (Topographia christiana, lib. 10. P.G. 88, 417) explains these

words rightly when he says: "Theophilus says that the cenacle is the home into which Christ the Lord entered as precursor for us (the type of Christ being the high priest in the tabernacle of Moses) , in order to appear for us before the face of God". For Theophilus does not say that the Cenacle was the actual sacred place, entering which, Christ would appear for us before the face of God; rather he says that the Cenacle was an image of that sacred place, and that to the celebration in the Cenacle, there corresponded as end or conclusion, the appearance of the victim in the holy place of heaven.

248We have the same in Amalarius (De officiis ecclesiasticis, 1. 1, c. 12. P.LL. 105, 1023) and in another place also he has words very similar (ibid., c. 15, col. 1023). We shall quote them later. Compare also Albert the Great, cited above (p. 65).

249What the early Christians meant by the phrase annual paschal commemoration has been a question disputed by scholars. Do the words refer to the Passion, or to the Resurrection, or to the Eucharistic Supper? Some, Emil Schurer, for example (in the learned historical work De controversiis paschalibus secundo post Christum natum saeculo exortis, Lipsiae 1869, p. 8-10 and 65 sq.)

thought that only the Supper and the Passion were commemorated. Others, like Duchesne, (La question de la paque au concile de Nicee, in R. D. Q. H. July 1880, p. 6-8; Origines du culte chretien, 3, 238; Histoire ancienne de l'Eglise, t. 1., p. 286-

287) , that along with the Passion the Resurrection alone is celebrated. In what is included both are right, but not in what is excluded. The documentary evidence of each party combined suggests: that it is not the Passion with the Supper only, nor the Passion with the Resurrection only, but the Passion with both the Supper and the Resurrection. So much so that properly speaking our Pasch is a triduum. This is confirmed by Hefele (Hist. des Concil. tr. fr. 1907, t. l., p. 146148). Our arguments in this chapter meet the objections of Emil Schurer: "For if the Christians of the West really commemorated the Resurrection of Christ, it is quite impossible to explain—and it has never yet been explained—, why they called this celebration the Pasch, ' (p. 65). On the contrary the reason is obvious: because they were commemorating the paschal sacrifice of our Lord, offered sacerdotally in the Supper, enacted in blood on the Cross, and divinely consummated in the Resurrection; for in this our Redemption consists, and all admit (ibid.) that the Redemption is the reason and the subject of our paschal celebration. After a careful study of the remarks of Charles Schmidt in Excursus 3 of his edition of the Epistola Apostolorum or Gesprache Jesu mit seinen Jungern nach der Auferstehung etc. Leipzig, 1919 (T. u. U. 43) , I find no reason to alter what I have written. Having explained all the latest opinions which interpret the early Christian pasch, either as commemorating the Death or the Resurrection, or the Supper, he then adds: "There will be found already at hand in our Epistle a settlement of this dispute among the learned". He refers here to a passage in that very ancient document (AD. 160-170, ibid., p. 402) where Christ is represented as speaking of the annual pasch of His disciples, commemorating His death (Epistola, c. 15, p. 52: "Do ye commemorate the anniversary of my death, the Pasch". We have a French version of this Epistola in L. Guerrier, Le Testament en Galilee de N. S.J. C., P. O. 9, 177-232; compare p. 198). We have already given our reasons for dissenting from the conclusions of Schmidt (in so far as it is exclusive, p. 601 foll.). Of the three elements of the Christian Pasch, one never excluded the others. The three are one.

250Thomassinus (De Incarnatione, 1, 10, c. 13) cites in this connection Epiphanius, Adv. haer, 51, n. 31; Chrysostom, Homil. in Ascensione Christi, n. 2; Cyril of Alexandria, De adoratione in spiritu et veritate, and In Joann, 1, 4, c. 2 (P.G. 41, 945; 50, 445-446; 68, 1092-1096; 73, 568-569). We may also add Cyril of Alexandria, (In Lucam XXII. 14, P.G. 72, 905-908, and in Glaphyr. in Num., P. G 69, 625; Eutychius, In Levit., XXIII. 9-14 P.G. 87, 775; Rupert of Dietz, In Levit., 1, 2, c. 36-37, P.L. 170, 277; and particularly the words of Eutychius which we quote directly.

251Compare ibid., n. 3. col. 2396: "The breaking of the venerable bread signifies death by violence, hence it is called the desirable Pasch. " The faulty and portentous etymology which derives the word pasch from a Greek word meaning suffering, was suggested by Philo (Quis rerum divinarum haeres sit, parag. 40, Op. omn. ed. P. Wendland, 1898, t. 3. P. 42) , as P. Zahn (Forschungen zur Geschichte des neutestamentlichen Kanons, II. Theil; 1883, p. 136) , remarks. I think too that it was applied implicitly by Irenaeus (Adv. haeres., 4, 10, I ; compare p. 79 above) , it was rejected by Gregory Nazianzen (Or. 45. n. 10. P.G. 36, 636) , though Procopius (In Exod., XII. 2. P.G. 87, 562) gave it later. As the Greek writers could make such an egregious error in etymology, it is no surprise that Latin writers, like Tertullian (Adv. Jud., 10. P.L. 2630) and others, whom Jerome (In Matth., XXVI. 1. P.L. 26, 190) and Augustine (In Joann., Tr. 54, I. P.L.. 35, 1784-1785) take to task, should follow their lead. Clearly then seeing that Augustine rejects the erroneous derivation of the word pasch, the seventh of the Sermones of Augustine published by Michael Denis, is wrongly attributed to him. For there (P.L. 46, 837) , we read: "Pasch is a Hebrew word which means passage; but in the Greek paschin is to suffer; in the Latin pascha is to feast-pascere, as we say: pascam amicos". Meantime it should be noted that the author of that Sermo included within the Christian pasch, the Supper (pascam) and the Resurrection (transitum) with the Passion (paschin). The whole passage should be read. Even after the aspersions of Jerome and Augustine, the author of the work De officiis attributed to Bede (l. c.) again resuscitates this false derivation of the word pasch.

252See Thomassinus, De Incarnatione Verbi Dei, 1, 10, c. 11-14.

253How the connection of the priesthood with the Resurrection in the Epistle to the Hebrews is explained by others, not "without a certain amount of subtlety" as they admit, see Huyghe, in Hebr., V. 5, op. cit., p. 118.

254"When was He made the Pontiff of our confession? Was it not when" etc.

255It appears to me that he assigns the Resurrection to the eighth day because it took place on the day after the Sabbath or seventh. Just as a little later Hesychius (In Levit. IX. 1-4) wrote: ". ..

It was on this day that the Saviour rose from the dead, it is believed to be the eighth. " Rupert of Dietz (In Levit., 1, 2, c. 5. P.L.. 187, 691) arrives at the same conclusion by a different line of reasoning: "What Moses means by the words in seven days the consecration is finished is evident from many passages of Scripture: because within seven days the whole cycle of the present world is comprised, it is brought to a close on the eighth day, that is the time of the resurrection to come, already fulfilled in Christ the High Priest, we believe firmly that it will also be fulfilled in us in the time to come".

256How the sacred fire consuming the victims also consummated them, was explained above (chap. I).

257In the slaying of the ox, Cyril sees in type the passion of Christ; in the sweet-smelling burning of the holocaust of the ram, the Resurrection. Notice the same order in the second part of the sentence: the blood victim, the flour tempered with the oil of gladness.

258Compare Cyril of Alexandria, De adoratione in spirit. et ver., (l. II. P.G. 68, 756

259We find it again on the verse in Leviticus VII. 17: But whatsoever shall be found on the third day shall be consumed by fire. "We are here reminded of the third day on which our Saviour who died for us, rose glorious from the dead" (Commentarii in Leviticum. P.G. 87, 718).

260The death of the faithful, even of the martyrs, is not sacrifice in the strict sense: hence it cannot be said strictly that their sacrifice is consummated by the glory of the resurrection. But the death of Christ is a real sacrifice, and hence it is strictly said to be consummated by the glory of the Resurrection

261Possibly the Pseudo-Augustine, author of the Liber de quattuor virtutibus caritatis, has this meaning in the words he addresses to Abraham: "Though thou indeed didst lead thy son to be immolated freely and voluntarily, believing that he would rise again, thy son will not burn in that sacrifice, because the resurrection is reserved for the Son of God (P.L. 47, 1130). However the author may have been following some other line of thought.

262Further on In Levit., 1. 2, c. 6, col. 792, he says: "He had no other victim but Himself to offer in holocaust. The fire came down on Him. ....and devoured the holocaust, that is after its own manner of devouring, which we with the Apostle rightly call changing, because: rising from the dead, he dieth now no more, death hath no more dominion over him".

263Indeed the divine acceptance is given in either way: the descent of God on the Victim, or the taking up of the Victim by God. Hence in the Mass we pray for the acceptance of our sacrifice, which is in the transubstantiation in two ways: by calling on God to descend on the oblata, and by praying that the oblata may be borne to God, as will be seen later.

264Observe how the Ascension is linked with the Eucharist, showing how the one sacrifice runs from its Eucharistic offering to its consummation in heaven

265We find these words of St. Germanus in the treatise of St. Sophronius of Jerusalem, entitled Sermo complectens totam historiam ecclesiasticam et subtilem expositionem rerum omnium quae in divina liturgia peraguntur (P.G. 87ter, 3996).

266Durengues assigns the treatise to Phoebadius in his work entitled La question du De Fide, Agen, 1909, after the authors of the Hist. Litter. de la France, t. I, partie 2, 1733, p. 273-279; in opposition to others who attributed this treatise to Gregorius Elibertanus, such as Dom. Morin, I'Attribution du De Fide a Gregoire d'Elvire, Revue Benedictine, 1902, p. 220-237, following Quesnell, diss. XIV, De variis fidei libellis etc., P.L. 56, 1049-1053.

267Evidently the words in utilius must be kept separate, though the editors have made them one word inutilius. For the words valde inutilius permutatum fall not short of nonsense. Particularly so when we see that in the Epistola from which we quote, Gregory has

nothing but praise for the version of Claudius, he shows not the slightest indication of wishing to correct it, or to prevent an incorrected version being circulated. This is what the Benedictine publishers read into it (P.L. 77, 1233 and 79, 9). But all he wanted was to recover possession of his own works, and prevent their promulgation during his lifetime.

268Not Joannes Cornubiensis: cf. Hurter, Nomenclator 3. col. 95, 3 and 212

269Because the place of Christ Priest at the right hand of the Father, was made known only by the mission of the Holy Ghost, to which it was ordained; and because it was then finally that the sanctification of Christ Victim attained its full effect, when the Church was sanctified in the apostles, in the words of our Lord: For them do I sanctify myself, that they also may be sanctified in truth: Bede assigns the ultimate consummation of our Saviour's paschal sacrifice to the day of Pentecost. "His Victim was immolated in the time of the pasch, but it was really consumed on the day of Pentecost by the Holy Ghost appearing in fire" (Super Acta Apostolorum expos., c. 2. P.L.. 92, 945). So much so that he teaches that the first day of the week was the consecrated day of the Lord, by the descent of the Holy Spirit, and not by the Resurrection (op. cit., c. 2, col. 946). We however say that it was because of both. Every point of this teaching is included in the celebrated Instruction of Louis Albert Joly de Choin, Bishop of Toulon, delivered on November 15, 1748: "This divine Victim was immolated on the Cross. It was consummated, so to speak, by the Resurrection and by the Ascension of Jesus Christ: for by the Resurrection all that was mortal and corruptible in Jesus Christ was destroyed, and was swallowed up by the life. It was then that His Body was clothed with immortality; and by the Ascension this Victim was presented before the face of God, and placed on the right hand of God the Father; finally on the day of Pentecost we find a kind of communion with the Victim; for it was on this day that the faithful were incorporated, so to speak, with Jesus Christ, made partakers of His Spirit, and members of His body as St. Paul says" (Instruction sur le Rituel. Du sacrifice de la Messe, ed. Bisunt. 1827, p. 302-303). On the connection between Pentecost and the Eucharist we shall have more to say later.

270L'idee du sacerdoce et du sacrifice de Jesus Christ, Paris, 1677. On the Resurrection, part, 2, ch. 8. On the Ascension ibid., ch. 23, p. 103

271Explication des ceremonies, On the Resurrection, 1, 2, c. 4. Compare Lepin, L'idee du sacrifice dans la religion chretienne, p. 151 and 161-164

272Condren, op. cit., part 4, p. 367

273Both in this and in the last chapter. The Eucharistic partaking, as we said, signified the future communication of Christ in the goods of God, to be obtained by the Resurrection and the Ascension, and this not only because the Victim would be raised to a celestial condition, but also because the Priest, partaker of the Victim, would be glorified.

274Such a reference is found in the Mass in our prayer, Suscipe sancta Trinitas. Benedict XIV writes: "In this prayer the Greek Church mentions the Incarnation, the Nativity, the Passion, the Resurrection, the Ascension and the descent of the Holy Ghost. If now the Roman Church speaks only of the Passion, the Resurrection and the Ascension, the reason is: that in these three mysteries WHICH ARE THE PRINCIPAL PARTS OF THE SACRIFICE, THE IMMOLATION AND THE CONSUMPTION of the Victim are best represented". (De sacros. Missae sacrif., 1. z, c. 11, n. 6).

275Cf. below, later in this work

276Here naturally sacrifice is used in the passive sense for the thing offered in sacrifice, not in the active sense, which is the sacrificial action

277Indeed had Christ like Lazarus risen mortal and passible, He would no longer have been Victim. For the sanctification which accrued to Him by the sacrifice of Himself consisted in this, that He divested Himself of the likeness of sinful flesh, that is, mortal and passible life, and thence passed into the limitless splendour of justice and divine life. For a thing is sacred in that, separated from profane things, it comes close to God. Hence if He returned to mortal and passible life, it would simply mean that the sanctity of the victim would be corrupted and would vanish. This is confirmed by the Apostle, when he says: If then he were on earth, he would not be a priest, seeing that there would be others to offer sacrifice according to the law (Hebr., VIII. 4). That is to say, if He were on earth, leading an earthly life, He would not have risen to the newness of a heavenly life. Therefore His sacrifice would not have been eternal, and so would be in the number of weak and transient sacrifices. But it was precisely for the offering of these transient sacrifices that the legal priesthood was instituted, and He, not being of the priesthood of Aaron, would not even offer such sacrifices. Therefore He would not have been a priest at all. Hence Chrysostom: " (Paul) proves that He could not be a priest on earth. Why? Because on earth, he says, there was no resurrection, " (In Hebr. hom. 14, n. 1, P.G. 63, III).

278For we know that the sacraments of the New Law are, each in its own way, symbols of the sacrifice of our Lord. For from their primary essence they are (commemorative) symbols of a sacred thing (which is the Passion of Christ) , in as much as that sacred thing sanctifies men (cf. St. Thomas, 3 S. 60, 3 c. and 2m). Moreover in as much as they are applied by our Redeemer, they are instruments of the same sacred thing, and as such they are practical (effective) signs, as well as signs indicative of the effect produced by them, that is of our sanctity (cf. ibid., and 3 S. 62, 5). But we shall have more of this in its proper place in the third book

279A passage to be considered later from Gregory Nazianzen, has a similar meaning. He says that Christ in heaven is wholly free from the humiliation of supplication; and active sacrifice implies supplication on the part of the sacrifices. But the sacrifice of Christ has penetrated the heavens and abides, in the enjoyment of the glory of God. See later in this work.

280Clearly a proof from the word Sela alone is senseless. This however does not lessen the value of the argument, rather it shows clearly that Gerhoh was convinced of the eternity of the sacrifice from other sources. Hence the passage is really evidence of a theological tradition, rather than an intrinsic proof. We must bear this in mind also in the interpretation of many citations from the mediaeval writers which either have already been quoted or will be quoted, on this and on other matters.

281Meantime it should be noted that the eternity of the Victim in glory was spoken of and preached on (without opposition) at the Council of Trent by Francis Sonnius (Theiner, Acta Genuina, 1, 612) afterwards Bishop of Antwerp, also by Bartholomaeus Miranda O.P. (ibid., p. 693) who professed that he was submitting the teaching of Cajetan. We shall deal with this teaching and other matters connected with it more opportunely later

282Who was delivered up for our sins, and rose again for our justification (Rom., IV. 25).

283When theologians (St. Thomas for example, in 3 S. 56 I and 2) speak of the Resurrection of Christ as the cause, and particularly as the efficient cause, of our resurrection or justification, they must not be taken to mean the actual rising from the dead in process (in fieri). This is a past action, it is over. They are speaking of the Resurrection as accomplished and permanent (in facto esse). That is to say they speak of Christ risen from the dead to a life of glory.

Thus Suarez writes: "We must consider two things in the Resurrection of Christ. First there is the Resurrection as a process, an action, or change that is now over. Secondly, there is the terminus or immediate result of the Resurrection, which is Christ as Man now living a glorious and immortal life. When therefore we say that the Resurrection of Christ is the cause of our own resurrection, we must not understand it as happening by reason of the change which occurred in the pass but because of the terminus or result which remains and which can be a cause" (In 3 S. 56, I Commentarius).

284So Chrysostom in his fine exposition in h. l.

285What the Salamenticenses (De Incarnatione disp. 31, dub. 4, n. 37) have to say is closely parallel to what we have here set down

286Eternal propitiation was necessary for us, because our debt to the justice of God was eternal; eternal on the part of the subject who owed the debt, (that is on the part of man who had sinned) , for man of himself was forever incapable of making reparation for the injury (even of a venial sin, apart from grace) ; eternal also on the part of the object to whom the debt was due (that is on the part of God outraged). For God is all Good, simple, without parts extended in time or space, we cannot partly reject Him and partly love Him. He is either loved eternally or abandoned eternally (for God is His own eternity). Hence a debt contracted against Him is contracted against His eternity, just as against His other attributes (Compare St. Augustine, Ep. 102, n. 27. P.L.. 33, 381; coll. Suarez De vitiis et peccatis, disp. 7, sect. 3, n. 5; St. Thom., Cg. 3, 244, parag. Naturalis aequitas et seq.). Hence the debt will run on forever: and no compensation will be adequate unless it covers and equals the whole duration of the debt. Therefore the price paid as compensation for sin must in the nature of things be eternal.

287This must not be taken to imply that our sins are not actually wiped out but merely covered or hidden. They are absolutely blotted out, taken away, destroyed, so much so that were I to sin again, my past sins would not revive. But this of course (in the present economy of our salvation purchased by the sacrifice of Christ) is entirely on the supposition of the eternal and indestructible reparation once made to God for the sin of guilty man, while man by faith is made partaker of the price paid by Christ, and so himself, as it were, pays it through Christ. Therefore just as the cause in being of our life or grace is the Victim of the Redemption (as we shall see later) , so our ransom in its celestial home is, so to speak, the cause in being of our freedom from the guilt of injustice to God. Failing the cause (to make an absurd supposition) , the effect would fail (absurd conclusion). Hence St. Ambrose: "It behoved Christ to enter into heaven in order to be an eternal offering for our sins". And Gregory still more clearly: "He immolates an ETERNAL sacrifice, because what He cleanses (the sins of man) ARE. ETERNAL". Finally we see from this: why Christ entering into His eternal glory is said to HAVE FOUND ETERNAL REDEMPTION for us (Hebr., IX. 12). It follows from this that of all the damned who at some time of their lives were justified, some do benefit from the celestial sacrifice. In virtue of the eternal redemption they are not punished for sins once forgiven. This is an effect of a twofold cause. First, the Mercy of God who by the merits of Christ condoned the sins of the past; man's malice cannot make this mercy void (3 S. 88, 1). Secondly, the Fidelity of Christ (faithful pontiff) who never withdraws the price once paid, but remains the eternal payment for the debt now forever extinct. These two causes are interrelated: because the Fidelity of Christ is related to the Mercy of God as to its final cause, while the Mercy of God is disposed to the Fidelity of Christ as to its efficient cause.

288The author is here defending the contention, that previous to any sacrificial activity of ours in the Mass, Christ in Himself is Victim.

289That all the grace of our sanctification still flows to us from the flesh of the sacrifice is plainly stated by the Alexandrine Fathers on Leviticus VI. 27: Whosoever shall touch the flesh thereof shall be sanctified. Origen, In Levit., hom. 5. n. 7 and 8. P.G. 1 2, 442-443 ; Cyril of Alexandria, Glaphyr in Levit., P.G. 69, 549-552. Cf. Procop. Gaz. in h. l. P.G. 87, 715.

Undoubtedly just as it was in the absolute power of God to sanctify us otherwise than by through the humanity of Christ, so it was in the absolute power of Christ to sanctify us by His humanity, even if that humanity were not endowed nor ever to be endowed with glory. Hence Athanasius (Or. 3 contra Arianos, n. 40. P.G. 26, 408409) argues forcefully against the Arians, that before His Resurrection, the Incarnate Word could have done everything It does now after the Resurrection; nevertheless he admits that Christ "received according to His humanity after the Resurrection. ....the same things which He had even before the Resurrection as Word, with this end that through Him man as freed from all corruption. ..... might reign eternally in heaven."

Another passage explains this: "He took unto Himself a mortal body, so THAT THE BODY MIGHT SATISFY FOR ALL, and, BECAUSE OF THE INDWELLING WORD CONTINUE INCORRUPT, and the grace of the Resurrection would for evermore free mankind from all corruption. Hence He offered to death the Body which He assumed as a sacrifice and a victim free from every stain, and by the oblation of Himself for others, there and then saved mankind from death. For the Word of God Who is above all, by offering the temple of His Body for the salvation of all, paid their debt in His death, and united us all by what is common to Himself and to us, THE INCORRUPTIBLE SON OF GOD MOST APPROPRIATELY CLOTHED ALL WITH INCORRUPTIBILITY giving them the promise of the resurrection. For the corruption of death has no longer sway over man BECAUSE OF THE WORD INDWELLING IN THEM THROUGH THE ONE BODY Cf. I. Cor., X. 17. " (Oratio de Incarnatione Verbi, 9. P.G. 25, 112). Incorruptibility flows down, so to speak, from the Body of Christ into our body. Omitting for the moment other testimonies of the Fathers (and they are very numerous in this sense) , we shall merely remark that later in this work we are to meet statements from many of the Fathers which attribute even more plainly all our vivification to the Body of Christ contained in the sacrament.

290St. Albert the Great in 4 D. 43, 5, puts the matter very clearly in words full of unction: "It is better in this matter to be in absolute accord with the saints, as they are under divine inspiration. And because the saints say that the Resurrection of Christ is the efficient and sacramental cause of our resurrection, I hold the same, and leave their words unchanged. " In explanation of this he makes a distinction between the first and equivocal cause, God, and the immediate and univocal cause: which later cause he further divides into habitual and actual. The univocal habitual cause of our resurrection is the humanity of Christ, by reason of the state of glory purchased by the Resurrection from the dead; the actual univocal cause is the same, as bringing into action, by an act of the will, the power habitually bestowed on it (= "the voluntary cause having in itself the form of what is caused"). In other words the formal principle whereby Christ influences our resurrection, is His Body risen glorious from the dead. The actual work of our resurrection in virtue of that formal principle will be performed when Christ "bearing the insignia of our redemption" will judge the world. Read the whole rather long article.

291So far certainly the subject of the sentence is God not Christ, as Prat is careful to point out (Theologie de St. Paul, 2, t. 2, p. 321).

292The Greek word used by the Apostle—cheirographon—means handwriting in general, and in particular the handwriting in a deed wherein a person acknowledges that he is indebted to a creditor, here it suggests something else comparable to such writing on a deed. The expression is of course metaphorical, standing for something else. But there is disagreement in what that something else is. (1) All the earlier writers, and first of all St. Ephraem (Hymni dispers, 22. 8 ed Lamy, 4, 772) , Serapiorz Thmuitanus (Eucologium, 12, F. D. 2, 170) , Chrysostom in h. l. hom. 6, n. 3. P.G. 62, 340; Homil ad neophytos apud August., Contra Julianum 1, 6, 21, P.L. 44, 658) , Augustine (Confess. 9, 13, 36. P.L. 32, 778) ; also the Liturgies, V. g. Missale Bobbiense, oratio quarta pro defunctis as found in Mabillon, Sacramentarium Gallicanum, P.L. 72, 568; the writers of the Middle Ages, e. g. St. Thomas, say that the handwriting means our guilt, our consciousness of the debt to the divine justice. But (2) there are modern writers (Padovani, In S. Pauli epistolas, 1892, t. 4, 218; Prat, l. c. p. 330) who, having in mind particularly Coloss. 11. 16 and Ephes., II. 15, think that the Mosaic Law is meant, in as much as it imposed on man a debt of performing certain works and enduring certain punishments.

Careful consideration of the whole matter will show that both these explanations can and should be merged into one. We must bear in mind an expression repeatedly used by St. Paul: man was made subject to the Law and to the angels because of sin (Gal., Ill. 19 and 21-23; IV. 1-5; Tim., 1. 9). Because man was in debt to an outraged God, and was not yet freed from that debt, God made Him a slave to the Law and to the angels who administered the Law. Christ, by removing the debt of sin, removed at the same time the whole of this obligation, freeing us from the power of the Law and

from the dominion of the angels. Hence a double liberation is implied. First and before all else, we must understand this liberation as liberation from the guilt of sin; and consequently in the second place, liberation from the servitude of the Law. The word handwriting in this passage of the Epistle to the Colossians strictly speaking refers to the guilt of sin, or the debt to God, without omitting however a reference also to our debt to the Law (V. 14) and to the angels (V. 15). The expression of the decree definitely suggests this interpretation. And that the Mosaic Law is intended, is plain from the other verses of the context (11. 20 and 11. 21 compared with Ephes., 11. 15. Prat. loc. cit., p. 332)

But a difficulty lies in explaining the dative case (dogmasin) in the Greek. Prat (ibid.) mentions some by no means happy suggestions that have been made by way of explanation, adding a suggestion of his own no happier than the rest. The more correct explanation seems to me to lie in making it a dative of advantage or rather disadvantage. The Law held men as its debtors (and the angels held men as their subjects) , because men were indebted to the divine justice. The Law therefore was fortified, and, so to speak, armed against us, by this original document of our obligation to God. When this was torn from its hand, nothing now remained for it wherewith to bind us to itself. If the document was destroyed (as it was by Christ on the Cross) it was destroyed TO THE DISADVANTAGE OF THE LAW ITSELF (tois dogmasin). Hence the interpretation of this word in the dative (tois dogmasin) appears to be: blotting out the handwriting of the guilt TO THE DISADVANTAGE OF THE DECREE (that is the Law which possessed it and used it against us) , which was contrary to us, and hath taken the same out of the way (taken it away as it were from the hands of the Law) , fastening it to the cross, (where it was blotted out to the disadvantage of the Law). And despoiling (of the handwriting of sin which they possessed against us) the principalities and powers, he hath exposed them confidently in open show, triumphing over them (deprived of the power of triumphing over man) in himself (crucified and returned to God).

Hence St. Paul personified both the Law and the angels. He speaks of the Law as the owner or the retainer of the handwriting which is fatal to us, and which God had, so to speak, committed to the hands of the Law; from which the handwriting is then taken away, blotted out, destroyed; that handwriting, that is, of the debt which we owe to God because of our sins. The Vulgate therefore gives the meaning accurately enough in its rendering the handwriting of the decree: as if the handwriting were in the possession of the decree or the Law. Because then the Law was in possession of the handwriting, the handwriting was blotted out TO ITS DISADVANTAGE; if my house is burnt, I can say it is burnt to me (i. e. to my disadvantage). To conclude: sin being wiped out, or the document of sin being destroyed, the binding force of the Law was destroyed: which simply means that in respect of its binding force, the Law is said to be destroyed or blotted out. Nevertheless the handwriting here is not the actual Law, it is our own consciousness (whence came the binding force of the Law) of the debt to God for sin, and for sin not yet atoned for by the sacrifice of our Lord. The Apostle does not say that the actual Law itself was affixed to the Cross: as if Christ crucified the Law in punishment for His crucifixion because of the Law, as Prat, agreeable to his own interpretation of the word handwriting explains.

Meantime note from what we have said that both Coloss., II. 13-16 and Ephes., II. 5-6 agree and are mutually complementary. Compare R. S. R., Oct. -Dec. 1916, p. 468-471. 293St. Augustine is followed by Beda and Rabanus, in h. l. P.L. 92, 99; 107, 1070. 294Hesychius tersely suggests this same equivalence. Commenting on Leviticus V. 9: and of its blood he shall sprinkle the side of the altar, he says: "The side of the altar is the Body of Christ, of which Christ Himself said: Destroy this temple, and in three days I will raise it up" (In Levit., 1. 1, P.G. 93, 836).

295By the temple to be destroyed our Lord meant first of all the actual temple of Jerusalem, the material site of the Jewish worship. there before His eyes and the subject of His discourse (John II 14-17). By the temple to be built in three days, He meant, as John (II. 21) testifies, His own Body to be raised up after His Passion, by whose sacrifice the Old Testament would be ended and the New inaugurated and the Law would be destroyed by the Jews in such manner as to be fulfilled by Christ. For we have two temples here (not by any means opposed one to the other, rather mutually connected in temporal succession as well as in typical relationship) the one in the first part of the sentence, a temple of stone, the other in the second part, a living temple. This we see from the words of the false witnesses, as given in Mark (XIV. 58) I will destroy this temple made with hands, and in three days I will rebuild another NOT MADE WITH HANDS.

We must carefully distinguish in this allegation where the false testimony is, and where it is not. The false testimony is undoubtedly where our Lord is represented as saying that He Himself would destroy the material temple (I will destroy, compare Matth. XXVI 61: 1 am able to destroy, and Matth. XXVI. 40: Thou that destroyest and Acts VI. 14, shall destroy). Christ did not say that He would destroy, He said: Destroy ye, as if ALLOWING the Jews to invade the temple and overthrow it, and to abolish the priesthood of Aaron,—all which they would do when they put Christ to death. For Christ, priest according to the order of Melchisedech, was offering Himself as a Victim pleasing to God, a Victim to be received into glory, and to make all other victims void. To the Jews then and not to Christ, the ruin of the temple was to be imputed; only a perjured witness could say that it was attributed to Him. Apparently the false testimony is not to be placed in the contrast between the two temples—the temple made with hands and the temple not made with bands, as though the false witnesses knew that He spoke of the temple not made with hands, and alleged that He spoke of the material temple made with hands. For I) this contrast is too sublime for an ordinary human mind, and 2) the second part of the sentence is implicitly confirmed by St. John, he says (II. 21). ..... he spoke of the temple of his body, and 3) in meaning and style it is in keeping with the words of Hebr., IX. 11-12: by a greater and more perfect tabernacle not made with hands, that is of this creation; neither by the blood of goats or of calves but by his own blood, etc. ; for here the tabernacle not made with hands (the assumed humanity) is compared, as something greater and more perfect, to a tabernacle made with hands, sufficing for the weak, figurative, sacrifices of goats and calves. Hence if in the second part of the sentence Christ spoke of a temple not made with hands, He strictly and literally could only mean his own Body.

The words of L. de Grandmaison (art. Jesus Christ, in Dictionnaire Apologetique col. 1511) are appropriate: "The tragic duel of the two spirits, and so to speak of the two religions, is summed up and symbolized in the two temples. To the magnificent edifice (what stones those were, and what a structure) where dwelt exclusively for every good Israelite, the glory of God, is to be substituted a broader worship, in spirit and in truth."

296Already made manifest at the time of our Lord's death, when the veil of the temple was rent in two, from the top even to the bottom (Matth XXVII. 51; cf. Mark XV. 38 and Luke XXIII. 45).

297Sacred writers call this worship spiritual for two reasons principally: because it is carried out by the spiritual power of the divinity, and because the divine thing which is offered beneath the sensible symbols is only visible to the eyes of faith. Moreover we should add that the fruits of this great sacrifice are spiritual, not a mere cleansing of the flesh

298Recall what we have said (chap. I) on the part played by the altar as an integral element in the rite of sacrifice, and from primitive times

299The Body of Christ is sacramentally sprinkled with His Blood, when by the separate consecration of the Body and Blood, the Body besprinkled with the Blood poured out is symbolized.

300On this point we could quote indefinitely from Hesychius' Commentarius in Leviticum. There is scarcely a page, in the first two books particularly, where he does not give to Christ the praise and the name of Altar

301It would seem that this was a familiar expression of Ambrose, if one may conjecture from the treatise De Sacramentis. The compiler of this work is very close to Ambrose in style and substance, and twice he sets down what liturgists of every age have looked upon as an incontrovertible dogma: that our material altars are symbols of the Body of Christ. So we have m this work "The altar is the form of the Body" (1. 4, c. 2, n. 7. P.L.. 16, 437). "For what is the altar but the form of the Body of Christ?" (1. 5, c. 2, n. 7, col 447). Hence the true altar, the antitype of our altars, is the Body of Christ.

302Dionysius however took this, word for word, from the Explanatio mysteriorum oblationis (ninth century) of Moses Bar Kepha, which was edited and translated into English by R. H. Connolly and H. W. Codrington (Two commentaries on the Jacobite Liturgy Oxford, 1913, p. 67).

303M. J. Scheeben (Handbuch der Katholischen Dogmatik, vol. 3, Fribourg, 1882, n. 1427, p. 431) notes this fact: "The same divine principle which, as spiritual unction, consecrates Christ in His human soul as most high priest, consecrates Him likewise as most high altar, to carry His Victim". As usual J. Wilhelm and T. B. Scannell (A Manual of Catholic Theology, vol. 2, London 1898, p. 203) follow Scheeben

304Of this altar Andrew of Caesarea, commenting on Apoc., VIII. 3 (P.G. 106, 288) says: "The golden altar is Christ in whom resides all sacrificial and sanctifying virtue, and in whom the sacrifices of the martyrs are offered (see Origen below) : the altar with the tabernacle shown to Moses on the mountain was a type of this altar". Arethas has something similar on this text (P.G. 106, 613). In agreement among the Latin commentators of the Apocalypse are: the Glossa Ordinaria in Apoc. VI. 9, VIII. 3 ("Christ is the altar, who offered Himself. ....the golden altar. ....according to the humanity, according to which He is the altar of the Trinity") IX. 13. P.L. 114, 722, 725, 728. Anselm of Laon in Apoc VI. 9 ("The altar is Christ upon whom we offer to God: for whatever we did would be profitless without His mediation, that is without the virtue of His Passion; and here is signified an altar, no longer the object of our senses, by the use of the expression golden altar, which is in the Holy of Holies") IX. 13. P.L. 162, 1524, 1530, 1535. Richard of St. Victor in Apoc. VI. " VIII. 3 "Stood before the altar. Of this altar it is typically written: you shall make an altar of the earth unto me. An altar of the earth, the assumed humanity. Just as to come was necessary for the assumption of the flesh, so to stand belongs to the immutability of the divinity. He therefore who came in the flesh, by His divinity stood before the altar, because by His divinity in which He remained immutable, He was higher and more sublime than by His humanity, which is an altar for us. ....Upon the golden altar, that is upon Himself. For He is an altar, because upon Him are offered to the Father all the vows of human justice. Golden, because in Him are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge etc., " (P.L. 196, 768, 776 sq.). Particularly we should note the words of St. Bernard in a sermon dealing expressly with "the heavenly altar under which St. John heard the voices of the saints": He writes: The altar of which we are to speak, is, in my opinion, and so far as my understanding goes, nothing else than the very Body of our Lord and Saviour. And I believe that in this matter I understand the meaning aright. (Sermo in festo omnium Sanctorum IV. P.L.. 183, 472) 305Other passages in a like sense will be cited from Ignatius later.

306Irenaeus says in another place: "Priests are all apostles of the Lord who possess neither land nor homes here on earth, but always serve THE ALTAR and God" (Contra haereses, 4, 8. P.G. 7, 995). From this passage where Ignatius is speaking of the New Law, and alluding to the Old, we cannot say definitely of what altar he is speaking-the we and the living altar, or the material and the representative. Meantime it seems to me that he is referring to the former, for reasons which will be clear enough from the remarks to be made directly with regard to the style of the early Fathers generally in their writings.

307Origen has been taken to task by St. Bernard (Serm. de div. 34. P.L. 183, 638 foll.) and far more sharply criticised by Petavius (De Incarnat., 1. 12, c. 8, n. 13) and Huetius (Origeniana, 1. 2, c. 2 q. 3, n. 9 for this imaginary picture of Christ indulging in lamentations, so to speak. From Origen himself we know elsewhere in the 23rd homily On Numbers, n. 2 (P.G. 12. 647448) that these are ordinary every day expressions, more or less figuratively used. Referring to the passage above from Huetius (P.G. 17, 835-836) Fathers C. and V. G. Delarue shrewdly remarked this. We may note too that Origen himself in this very passage of the 7th homily in Leviticum, explains the sense in which joy is lacking to Christ in this, that joy is not yet diffused through all the members of which He is the Head. His words are: "As long as I am not subject to the Father, so long He is not subject to the Father. This does not mean that He Himself lacks such subjection before the Father. But He is subject to the Father just as far as concerns me in whom He has not yet finished His work. So we read that we are the body of Christ and members in part. ....He who stands at the altar and bewails my sins, does not drink now, and He will drink afterwards, when all things have been subject to Him. Hence, O Christian, when you depart from this life, you will have joy, if you are holy. Full joy however, will be yours, only when no member is wanting to the body. You will await those others, just as He has awaited you. And if to you who are a member of that body, perfect joy is lacking, with how much greater truth, does our Lord and Saviour, who is the Head and Author of the whole body, say that His joy is not perfect, as long as He sees one of the members wanting to His body?" (col. 479-481).

308Compare col. 513, ibid., where Origen speaks of Christ washing His Flesh in His sacrifice in the evening, by which He is cleansed from the likeness of sinful flesh by which is meant the capacity for suffering and death

309We shall have occasion later to explain how the substantial sanctity of our Lord is the origin of all grace and glory in Christ, and through Christ in us

310"What then? Will they forbid us their altars? Even so, I know of another altar, AND THE ALTARS WHICH WE NOW SEE ARE BUT THE FIGURES OF IT: neither axe nor hand of man has been raised above that altar; neither the clang of steel, nor the sound of tool of carpenter or decorator, has been heard there; all the activities round about that altar are spiritual, one ascends to it by contemplation. At this altar I will stand, upon it I shall make immolations pleasing to God, sacrifices, oblations and holocausts, better than are offered now, just as truth is better than the shadow of truth. The great David seems to be thinking about this altar, when he says: I will go up into the altar of God, to God who giveth joy to my youth. No matter who he be, no one shall cast me out from this altar."

311"Let us immolate to God a sacrifice of praise, on the altar on high with the heavenly choirs. Let us pass beyond the first veil and approach to the second altar, let us gaze upon the Holy of Holies; nay more, let us immolate ourselves to God in every action of ours, every day of our lives. Let us accept all things for the sake of the Word, let us imitate His Passion by our sufferings, let us give honour to His Blood by our blood, Let us eagerly ascend to the Cross itself."

312"There is also an altar before the eyes of God; the Priest who first offered Himself for us, has entered there. He is the heavenly altar etc."

313We have a compendium of the teaching of St. Augustine in the following words of Gerhoh of Reichersberg: "You have the tabernacle of the present Church, the altar common to the good and the bad. ....There is another altar sublime, invisible, accessible to the good alone, unto which-like the high priest who alone and not without sacrifice enters into the holy of holies-the just man alone enters once only. He does this when he is taken up to God, body and soul as a holocaust, that his youth in every part of his being may be renewed there. He does not go into that altar in sadness, with any interior affliction derived from the old external trappings of His humanity, but all that he is and with all his being, he cleaves to God who rejoices his youth. I shall go in to this altar too, repenting at last of my sins, to God who rejoices my youth". In Psalm. 42. P.L. 193, 1530).

314Similarly on Exod. XXX. 10: "For He the Priest, the Victim, the Altar, in His own Blood entered once into the holies having obtained eternal redemption. ....The words It will be most holy to the Lord should be interpreted of the altar: for the Body of Christ is the Holy of Holies, seeing that all other things are sanctified by it". (P.L. 164, 360).

315Compare Augustine Quaest. in Heptateuch., 1. 1, c. 84. P.L. 34, 570; Cyril of Alexandria, Glaph. in Genes., 1. 4, c. 4. P.G. 69, 289

316This verse of Exodus XX. 24, has been repeatedly interpreted by mediaeval authors as referring to Christ. It is to be found in the commentary on the verse of Psalm 50: Then shall they lay calves upon thy altar, found in the Expositio in septem psalmos poenitentiales (P.L. 79, 600). Many writers of note have said that this is the work of St. Gregory the Great. This however has been called in question for some time, and it would seem that we must no longer attribute the work to Gregory, since A. Mercati (Revue Benedictine, July 1914, p. 250 foll.) has brought to light a much more probable author for this work in Heribertus, Bishop of Reggio in Emilia, who lived towards the end of the eleventh century

317Renz, (op. cit., 239-240) thinks that the Fathers sometimes call God according to the divine nature an altar, as receiving the offered gifts. However the examples he quotes from the Fathers do not prove it, for they all refer rather to the divine unction and the glory of the assumed humanity than to the Godhead. Though we do not admit this contention of Renz in respect of the Fathers, St. Thomas does certainly speak of God as an altar, in one place (3 S. 83, 4, 9m). But in another passage he says: "We must admit that in Christ who is our altar, there is according to His humanity the true nature of flesh: which is to make an altar of earth" (1-2, 102, 4, 7m). Before St. Thomas, Alain de l'Isle, among a few others, had said that in the divinity there was an altar: "In the temple of Christ, that is in His human nature, there are three altars; the first is the altar of the holocausts, namely His glorified flesh in which our sins are consumed; the second is His soul, for just as in the altar of incense aromatic substances were offered, so the soul of Christ has diverse virtues; the third is THE DIVINITY, in which shines the majesty of divine power" (Sermo in annuntiatione Beatae Mariae Virginis, P.L. 210-212). As we have said, it is more correct to say that the dignity of altar is attributed to Christ's humanity and flows from His godhead.

In respect of Christ as temple we may note the words of Heterius and Beatus in their Epistola ad Elipandum (1, 1, c. 66. P.L. 96, 936). "He is Priest and Sacrifice. He is also God and Temple. ALONE (of the three Divine Persons) He is Priest, Sacrifice AND TEMPLE, being all these things according to his form or nature of servant; but He alone is not God, for He is God together with the Father and the Holy Ghost. " Hence as Man Christ is temple, yet not as Man only but as Man-God.

318The author of the Didascalia honoured widows also with the title of altar, for a special reason (2, 26, 8; 3, 6, 3; 3, 14, 1) , compare the corresponding passages in the Constitutiones Apostolorum (2, 26, 8; 3, 6, 3; 3, 14, 1) and the Pseudo Ignatius in the work Ad Tarsenses (9, 1, FP. 2, 102). The reason given by the author of the Didascalia may be found in the last passage mentioned above (compare ibid., 4, 3, 3. F. D. 220) , because widows bearing the offerings of the faithful (liturgical offerings and connected with the Eucharistic offering) were looked upon as transmitting to God by their prayers, the votive offerings of the faithful; and so because of this office they were likened to altars. Tertullian (Ad uxorem, 1, 7. P.L. 1286) compares a widow of one husband only to a spotless altar of God, but I think for a different reason.

319Among the earlier Christian writers Lactantius seems to have given the clearer explanation on the Church as the temple of God foretold by the prophets: "All the prophets have plainly foretold of Christ, that being born of human flesh of the family of David, He would set up to God an eternal temple, which is called the Church, and would call all the nations to the true religion of

God. This is the faithful house, this is the immortal temple, in which those who do not sacrifice, will not have the reward of eternal life" (Divin. Instit., 1, 4, c. 14. P.L.. 6, 487). In the Armenian liturgy the people sing of the Church as the glistening temple of the Eucharist: "Rejoice greatly, O daughter of light, holy Catholic mother, rejoice with thy children, O Sion! Adorn and beautify thyself, illustrious spouse, radiant tabernacle, like unto the heavens, because God anointed, Being from Being, is always sanctified in thee. To reconcile us to the Father and for the forgiveness of our sins, He distributes His sacred Body and Blood to us, by which He brings His holy Incarnation to perfection. " (Max Saxon. Missa Armenica, 14, compare B. 420). In our Liturgy for the feast of the Dedication, note how vivid is the language which sets before us the Church as a living temple. We could give innumerable quotations from the early Church writers and from writers after them to show how familiar is this interpretation of the heavenly altar as Christ, as the Church, and as the Saints. Some of these we shall quote in different parts of this work, as occasion occurs. We shall here content ourselves by referring to the commentary of Berengaudus (probably of the ninth century) on the Apocalypse (P.L. 17) where we find the following 1) "The altar of God is Christ" (col. 921, in VI 9; 2) "The altar is the Church" (col. 931, 932, 943, in VIII 3 and 5 and IX. 13) ; 3) The Altar is "the saints and perfect men, who are members of the Church" (col. 950, in Apoc. XI. 1).

320Hymnus in Resurrectione Domini ad vesperas, A. H. 51, 87. Later we shall have more to say about this hymn. Like expressions occur in various other hymns (A. H. 12, 34; 30, 32, etc.). See below how Hincmar and others understood this as of the Eucharistic bread, burnt, so to speak, as an offering on the Cross

321Between A. D. 444 and 450, according to P. Schepens, Un traite a restituer a saint Quodvultdeus. eveque de Carthage. au V. siecle, in R. S. R., Mai-Sep. 1919, p. 234

322The Epistola presbyterorum et diaconorum Achaiae, of the fifth century at the earliest, has the following rather involved passage: "I offer a victim every day, SACRIFICING the spotless lamb ON THE ALTAR OF THE CROSS."

323We have already said that the words of Irenaeus Contra haeres., 4, 8, are not to be taken in this sense. That Ignatius is not speaking of material altars in his epistles, will be clear from what we have to say later on Ignatius.

324Among the inscriptions discovered in Latin Africa (at Orleansville) we have one which has been published (though its authenticity is open to doubt) as both Christian and very ancient (Corpus inscriptionum Latinarum, vol. 8, pars, z, n. 9704) :

ARAM DEO

SANCTO AETERNO

325Compare Dom. Leclercq, D. A. C., t. 1 col. 3155. One may also profitably read what Dollinger has to say about the ara and altare of the Romans, in Heidenthum und Judenthum, 1857, p. 540.

326Here it may be noted that the Greek word bomos (Latin, ara) was more commonly reserved in sacred Scripture for the worship of idols (See Westcott, The Epistle to the Hebrews, 3, p. 445).

Chrysostom follows the same use in his 24th homily in 1. Cor., I (P.G. 61 zoo) , when speaking in the person of Christ, he contrasts the bomos of the idols and my thusiasterion, where bomos corresponds to arae and thusiasterion to altare.

327Even after the use of altare for material altar had become common, the Fathers still continue to speak of the "table of sacrifice". (So Hilary, In Psalm 68, n. 19. P.L.. 9, 482. Compare In Psalm. 128, n. 10, col. 700.) See also Leclercq, loc. cit., col. 3157, about the constant use of the word trapeza (mensa) in the same connection. We find this same use in the Greek liturgies passim.

328Nicholas Cabasilas (De vita in Christo, 5. P.G. 150, 633) has something similar to say on the absence of material altars in the earliest ages of Christianity, when he says: "For the first priests their hands were the altars". We know too that St. Lucian of Antioch, priest and martyr, consecrated the Eucharist on his own breast while in prison (if we may trust the Arian historical documents. Compare Batiffol, La passion de S. Lucien d'Antioche in Compte rendu du Congres Scientifique Internationale des Catholiques, 1891 seconde sect. p. 184). Theodoretus tells us in his Religiosa historia seu ascetica republica C. 20 (P.G. 82, 1429) that he himself celebrated in the cell of an anchoret called Mar "using the hands of deacons for altar". Theodore of Canterbury in his Poenitentiale (c. 2. P.L. 99, 927) says that it is generally lawful for a priest "to celebrate Mass in an open field, if a deacon or a priest himself holds the chalice or the oblation in his hands". We infer from all this that though, be it understood, under ordinary circumstances in that period Mass could not be celebrated licitly except on a duly consecrated altar, still it seems that this obligation did not extend to cases of necessity, where an altar was not available. The moral theologians of our time (the majority at least) , hold a much stricter opinion, that in no circumstances can a priest be excused from the obligation of using an altar for celebrating Mass (though the obligation is merely one of the positive law) NOT EVEN TO GIVE THE VIATICUM TO ONE. OF THE FAITHFUL AT THE HOUR OF DEATH. But surely this is a very rigid interpretation of the law. In our time we have seen numbers exposed to immediate danger of death ina battle, the circumstances were such that military chaplains were faced with insuperable difficulties—an altar-stone lost or shattered, for instance, and none other obtainable for the celebration of Mass. Here could we forbid them to celebrate Mass without an altar—or rather its essential constituent, an altar-stone? I wonder if the origin of this severe teaching is not to be found in the teaching of those theologians, well founded and resting on undeniable fact, that in the nature of things an altar is necessary for sacrifice? This is of course true, but we must always keep in mind that our real altar is Christ Himself.

According to Palmieri-Ballerini (Op. theol-moral, t. 4, n. 772; compare n. 771) , some weighty authorities allow the celebration of Mass in certain cases of necessity—not public necessity (i. e. the necessity for a number at one time) , but that of an individual and of transient nature: if a tyrant threatens me with death unless I celebrate. This is a chimerical case, it has not to do with the common good. In one case at least (which I have not seen discussed by casuists) it must be admitted by all that celebration without an altar is licit. Suppose a priest has already consecrated the bread, and the altar is destroyed (as can happen in war time) , and the chalice is yet to be consecrated, either by some priest who has already consecrated the bread, or some other who happens to be at hand (say the first priest was slain). Here the divine law which enjoins the completion of the sacrifice prevails over the law of the Church which enjoins that a material consecrated altar must be used for the sacrifice. Note that in the case given, the necessity for consecrating without an altar rather than not consecrating at all, actually arises from REVERENCE FOR THE SACRAMENT. It seems to me that the same thing—the necessity for consecrating without an altar—can also be lawful, because of the spiritual necessity of the faithful especially in these days. Corblet (Histoire. ....du Sacrement de l'Eucharistie, 1885, 2, 61-62) has something which is to the point here: "In 1865, Pope Pius IX authorized the priests deported to Siberia to celebrate Mass in any place whatever, on an ordinary table say, or a slab or the trunk of a tree, in any costume, whenever it might be impossible for them to conform to the prescriptions of the Ritual."

Having duly weighed the matter I willingly give my assent to the opinion (up to now as far as I know, a solitary one) expressed by Zacharias Pasqualigo (+ 1664) in his De sacrificio Novae Legis (Rome 1707, tom. 1). He makes two statements to the point. First sub. n. 102: "In places in which there is not free exercise of the Catholic religion, in the absence of an altar, the sacrifice may be offered on any kind of altar, set up as best one can" (p. 590). Second, sub. not. 703, speaking of places where there is a free exercise of the Catholic religion: "If on the other hand, we speak of the necessity which arises either through the divine or the natural law, as when there is a pressing obligation of the divine law to administer the Eucharist to some one, I would say that this necessity prevails over the positive obligation of offering the sacrifice on a consecrated altar. The reason is because human law cannot prevail in opposition to the divine and natural law" (p. 591). And at this same place he refers to the well known principle: "Necessity makes that lawful which would not be conceded by dispensation" (p. 591) and he gives the reason for this: "because for dispensation there is not required such a necessity as of itself destroys the obligation of the law, or rather of itself prohibits the extension of the law to cover the case in point, but a reasonable cause only is required, and it leaves the obligation of the law in full vigour". Thus Pasqualigo, whose authority as a theologian is high in Rome; the casuists do not seem to have paid enough attention to his words. One may compare what is said later about the obligation of using unleavened bread for the sacrifice; it has many points in common with the obligation in question here of the use of a duly consecrated altar.

329Possibly a passage in Eusebius of Caesarea may be advanced as in conflict with this interpretation. In an Oratio over the building of a church in Tyre, he appears to attribute prayer and adoration of the Father in its strict sense to Christ as now in heaven. However as a theologian the authority of Eusebius is not very weighty on such a matter as the exact definition of the glory proper to the Only-Begotten.

330In the XII. century the Venerable Herveus of Burges also inserted these words of Gregory in his commentary on the Epistle to the Romans (P.L. 181, 719).

331A century later Adelman of Brescia (De Eucharistiae sacramento ad Berengarium epistol. P.L. 143, 1293) writes: "I believe that the words of the Apostle: who is at the right hand of the Father, who also maketh intercession for us, can only mean that the intercession is made NOT BY WORD, but by presenting before the Father His obedience and humanity by the commemoration of the Passion [which is made in the Mass]".

332A few years earlier, at Louvain, Ruard Tapper "who hated every novelty" (Hurter, 2, 1451) in controversy with the Protestants, had explained the intercession of Christ in a similar manner: "Christ OFFERS HIMSELF UNCEASINGLY TO GOD THE FATHER IN THE CHURCH TRIUMPHANT, ALWAYS LIVING TO MAKE INTERCESSION FOR US" (Declaratio articulorum a veneranda Facultate Theologiae Lovanensi adversus nostri temporis Haereses, simul et earumdem reprobatio, per eruditissimum virum S. Paginae professorem D. Ruardum Tappaert..

., Academiae Cancellarium Lugduni, 1554, p. 266). Eleven years after Sonnius, the great Bartholomew a Medina quite as definitely rejects humble petitions from Christ in heaven, he retains only the efficacy of the Victim: "We say that Christ the Lord makes intercession with the heavenly Father for us, not that He now offers humble petitions on bended knees. He makes intercession for US BY HIS VICTIM which is ever in the very presence of the Father, and the Father beholding It pardons our sins and bestows on us all the blessings necessary for salvation" (In 3 s. 57, 6 ed. Venet. 1602, fol. 681).

333Herein lies the principal distinction between the mediation of Christ and the mediation of Mary. She is rightly called "omnipotentia SUPPLEX."

334In the Incarnation in which He was made Man, the Son of God truly emptied Himself (exinanivit se Phil., II. 7). But His exinanition did not consist precisely in His being made Man (in heaven He is now Man, and there is no state of exinanition: for all the Fathers say with St. Paul, that the economy of exinanition has now ceased). The exinanition actually consisted in this: that in His human nature He deprived Himself of all that was connaturally due to Him as God. For although the Man Christ was God and Lord of glory, nevertheless He was not found in the glory of God and of the Lord, but in the condition of an ordinary human being, with the status of servant or slave; not reigning with the Father, but subject to Him like other men; subject indeed to God and the representatives of God, but also subject to the Law, which nevertheless was set because of transgressions. ....being ordained by angels (Gal., III. 19). Sent into the world in the likeness of sinful flesh (Rom., VIII. 3) , He took upon Himself all the disgrace of sin (sin only and the concupiscence which is the material element of sin, excepted) ,—corruptibility, passibility, mortality: SO MUCH SO THAT FOR HIS OWN PROTECTION AND WELFARE, HE WAS IN NEED OF GOD AND THE ASSISTANCE OF GOD (we see this in the sacerdotal prayer particularly, and in the agony in the Garden). For He so humbled Himself, that though all glory and power and domination was due to Him, nevertheless seeing that by this economy of exinanition, He deprived Himself of all this, it was possible for Him to merit it, and to pray that it be granted to Him. True, in His very innermost Soul, the seat of the beatific vision, His glory was as the glory of the Only-Begotten; but it was absent from all the inferior activities of the Soul, and still more so from the external and internal senses. It is the complexus of these activities and powers that make man a social being: because the things that are known by way of the beatific vision alone, are known after the manner of the divine essence, hence they cannot be the subject of thought, after the manner of inferior cognition, which is by way of analogy, and much less can they be expressed after the manner of men, that is uttered into the air. Hence as far as human intercourse is concerned, such things are unknown and unknowable (Mark XIII. 22) : unless later by the help of infused knowledge, they are reduced and translated into human concepts. How this is to be done (in the absence of accidental glory) , rests with God. Let us suppose then that a person were to be endowed with essential glory only; such a person would in no way transcend the human order or the infirmity of our fallen nature, in matters that pertain to human intercourse and social life. Christ on earth was in this state. Just as He was deprived of the divine perfection of His humanity, subservient to the Father, lower than the angels and a debtor to the Law, so too He was under obligation to adore, He needed to pray, until the time when He should pass into the state of blessedness, of glory, of incorruptibility, taking His place as Son that is as Lord, where the Word made Flesh now untarnished by any mark of servitude or humility, inglorious in no part of His humanity, is equal in the effulgence of His glory to God and the Father; so that now His glory is according to the whole man the glory as of the Only-Begotten, as of God.

335Wellhausen (Skizzen und Vorabeiten, III, 1, 1887, p. 116-118) and Smend (Lehrbuch der alttestamentlichen Religionsgeschichte, 2, 1889, p. 93 96) have written much that is useful on the Nezerim, all of which may be applied to Christ, as under obligation to God, by the most sacred tie of the sacrificial vow.

336For the name which is above every name given to Jesus in reward for His obedience and death, would appear to be not the name "Jesus" but the name "Lord, " for the following reasons: First, we find no early writer interpreting St. Paul in these words, as of the name Jesus. See Chrysostom, Theodoretus, St. Thomas in h. l. Second, the Son of God had already the name Jesus before His death. Hence it was not given to Him after His death, and it was not given to Him because of His death. It might be said that the name was given to Him in the Circumcision in reward for His already foreseen obedience. St. Paul however gives no indication of such interpretation, which would be mystic in the extreme, and foreign to the direct simple mentality of the Apostles: it savors of a much later period. Third, the actual words of the Apostle in the Epistle to the Philippians are in St. Paul's language, or at least the language which he wrote—the Greek: God gave Him the name, not a name. Hence the verse should not run: "God gave Him a name which is above every name" (as Prat, Theologie de Saint Paul translates it) , but "God gave him the name which is above every name" (Crampon). God therefore did not give Jesus Christ a name which eventually would be above every name; He gave Him that name which in itself is above every name. Now except the name of God, there is no such name (and with the Hebrews there was no such name) , and St. Paul usually gives the name of God to the Father. The only other name was the name of Lord, which St. Paul usually gives to Christ. Fourth, in the Greek, we find the verb corresponding to the English is omitted. Translating the Greek word for word, and omitting the is to be absolutely exact, the English version would run: Every tongue should confess that the Lord Jesus Christ to the glory of God the Father. The preposition corresponding to to above is the Greek eis = unto or towards, or for or to denoting unto, not en = in. Hence the translation as given in the Vulgate or Douay version: Every tongue should confess that the Lord is in the glory of the Father does not appear to be correct. Let us see then (giving full value to the Greek preposition eis not en) where the verb is should be understood. The Greek idiom would make it strange to omit it rather than express it, before the preposition eis. However let us try it so: Confess that the Lord Jesus Christ is to (or for) the glory of the Father. Of course this would give sense, but it would be something in the nature of a theological platitude. Put the verb is after Lord, and between Lord and Jesus Christ, corresponding to a Greek idiom, in which the verb is so understood, and we have: Confess that the Lord is Jesus Christ for the glory of God the Father. This gives complete sense adequate in every way. Hence we take it that is must be understood between Lord and Jesus Christ, not elsewhere. Therefore we conclude that this name Lord is the name above every other name given to Jesus Christ by the Father, so that when the name of Jesus is uttered, every knee should bow, and every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is the Lord, and this confession would redound to the glory of God the Father. "Yes, indeed, let all say this, and it is the glory of the Father" Thus Chrysostom in h. l. P.G. 62, 234; Theodoretus echoes the words of Chrysostom, in h. l. P.G. 82, 572. And before them Didymus had written in his Enarratio in Epist S. Petri, P.G. 39, 1770: "Let every tongue confess for the glory of God the Father, that Jesus is the Lord". Fifth, as confirming our interpretation we may consider a parallel instance in 1. Cor., XII. 3: No man can say the Lord Jesus but by the Holy Ghost (so the phrase runs word for word in the Greek). Plainly the meaning is: No man can say Jesus is the Lord but in the Holy Ghost. Compare also II, Cor., IV. 5 where the Lord is used attributively, as also is servants: For we preach not ourselves, but Jesus Christ our Lord (i. e. as our Lord) and ourselves your servants (as your servants) through Jesus. As far as the sense is concerned our interpretation fully accords with the words of Chrysostom (loc. cit.,) : "Christ humbled Himself to the most abject obedience, hence He received supreme glory. He became a servant: for which cause He is absolute Lord of the angels and of the world. " Later we shall have more to say on this subject, when we treat of the filiation of Christ, as receiving in a certain sense an increment in the Resurrection. 337Thomassinus (ibid.,) in this connection quotes Cyril of Alexandria (In Joann., XX. and Epist. 41. P.G. 74, 728-729 and 77, 216) , Ambrose, Augustine (Epist. 102, n. 7. P.L. 33, 373) , Guitmund and Ernaldus, while at the same time embellishing their words with excellent comments of his own. Thomassinus could have headed his list with St. Gregory Nazianzen (Or. 45 in S. Pascha, 25. P.G. 36, 675). Cyril of Alexandria follows him almost literally. Possibly the earliest of all the testimonies is that in the Epistola Apostolorum (probably between AD. 160 and 170) which puts on the lips of the Lord these words: "Until I return to the Father with my wounds" (Guerrier trans. P. O. 9, 199; compare ed. C, Schmidt, T. u. U., 43, 56) ; this, provided we accept the Ethiopic in preference to the Coptic text of the Epistola, in which the words at this place are rather different, and, I think, more suited to the sequence of thought and to the context generally

338For instance, the author of the Sacramentarium (c. 90 P.L. 172, 796) and St. Thomas (3 S. 54, 4) make the words of Bede their own.

339Guibert de Nogent, as far as I know, appears to be the only one who denied that the "gaping scars" of the wounds remain in Christ in heaven: "Say that the wounds were retained after the Resurrection, and are retained even now, what is the significance? To remind the Father, like a forgetful man, of the dispensation accepted by Christ, for the benefit of mankind? Even admitting the fitness of some reminder, surely the Flesh alone without the wounds, there at His right hand, would remind the Father. He has providential care of other things, has He not of this also?. ..

What will the wound in His side, the marks of the nails on His hands, matter to you, when the sign of the Son of Man will appear on the last day? In the throne of glory, why the horror of the five wounds? Do you think that when (after the Resurrection) , He distributed food and drink to His disciples with His own hands, there remained in those hands the gaping wounds dripping with blood? It is the height of absurdity. " (De pignoribus sanctorum, 1, 3, c. 4 P.L.. 156, 661).

340These erroneously by defect, since they deny to the celestial Christ the victimal condition, but also by excess, when they say that Christ adores. It is proper to Christ in heaven to be adored with the Father, not to adore with us. For the mediation of the consummated Victim precludes that exinanition which adoration implies, as we have seen.

341See the end of this chapter

342Albert Stoeckl (Das Opfer nach seinem Wesen und nach seiner Geschichte, Mainz, 1861, p. 448, foll) said that the celestial Christ by some act offers to God His past death, adding some prayers

343But only until the day of judgment (p. 219). Thalhofer errs by defect in this last restriction, for thus he limits the real eternity of the sacrifice of the Redemption. Estius In Hebr., VII. 17, and VIII. 2, assigned the same duration for the heavenly sacrifice

344Pell (Noch ein Losungsversuch zur Messopferfrage in Theologisch-praktische Monats-Schrift, XVIII, 655-657) has lately taught the same. Just recently Max Ten Hompel (Das Opfer als Selbsthingabe und seine ideale Verwirklichung im Opfer Christi, Frib-i-Brisg., 1920, p. 147-149) has written in a similar strain

345For it is one thing to say that the oblative act is internal, although it happens to be made outwardly manifest; and quite another to say that the oblative act, as significative, is intrinsically constituted by an internal and external element taken together. These theologians appear to describe the oblative act in the first manner rather than in the second

346As a matter of fact we have seen how the Fathers speak of an annihilation in the celestial glory, not an annihilation of the human nature, but of the mortality of Christ: which mortality was a kind of annihilation (or kenwsij) of the Word. Hence by the heavenly glory, the annihilation of mortality was itself annihilated. This was the acceptance and the consummation of the sacrifice of Christ by the Father, and in no sense Christ's own sacrificial offering

347Note how carefully St. Maximus of Turin distinguishes between the parts played by God and by the priest in this matter: "For in the mystery of the Incarnation, Mary bore the Priest in her womb as in a sanctuary. For what was to come into this world was wholly from her womb: God, Priest and Victim: GOD OF THE RESURRECTION, PRIEST OF THE OFFERING. We see all this in Christ. For He is God because He returned to the Father; Pontiff because He offered Himself; Victim because He was slain for us". It belongs to His priesthood, then, that Christ offered Himself, as the Victim of the Passion. It belongs to His Godhood, not His Priesthood that He arose from the dead and returned to the Father. Although the Fathers have also taught that His Priesthood was ratified, and His sacrifices consummated, in that He rose to a glorious life, and was taken up to the throne of God by the power of the divinity

348In this view, apart from other difficulties, we should note how illusory it is to see in the actual Resurrection of Christ a change of life. (Becomes unborn, dies) Three days had elapsed since the former life was destroyed by a very real immolation, afterwards the only change that occurs in the Resurrection itself is the change from non-life to the perfection of life.

349A few Anglicans maintain the same kind of eternal sacrifice whereby the glorious life of Christ is offered to God. They say that the sacrifice of the Church is the Eucharistic offering, united and subordinate to this. Thus Milligan, The Heavenly Priesthood, p. 266, in Hastings, D. B. 4, 347.

350The teaching of Cardinal Cienfuegos, I fear, only multiplies the difficulties of both schools: "We say that at the end of the world, there will still remain THE TRUE AND ETERNAL SACRIFICE TO BE CELEBRATED IN THE STRICTEST SENSE by our High Priest in His proper species. ....This is to be performed by the reproduction of the same internal act of Christ the Lord, or of the sacrificial act whereby He now immolates and offers Himself upon an unbloody altar, and whereby He immolated Himself in sacrifice on the Cross, and which particularly constitutes the sacrifice. ....And so we say THAT THIS SACRIFICIAL ACTION WILL COMMAND FOR THAT STATE OF SACRIFICE THE SUSPENSION OF ALL LIFE TO THE PHYSICAL BODY OF CHRIST THE LORD, OR LIFE DEPENDING ON THE BODY IN ANY WAY, THAT IS, OF ALL LIFE WHICH ACTUALLY PREEXISTS (though nevertheless there will not be in any way a suspension of the beatific vision and other independent acts of the Body of Christ). On this condition however, that in the same moment this sacrificial action will command in place of those other acts the production of other corporeal activities, all of which have for their end the divine honour, so that the Soul and the Heart and the Flesh rejoice in the living God, and most sweetly sing His praise etc. One existing act, however, this command does not sacrifice, although in a manner it depends on the Body; that is to say, His actual power to command (for this is a sacrificial action, it must be that of Christ the Lord as Priest and Man) ; though this is done on the Cross and on the altar, on which accordingly the sacrifice is not completed, except in the following instant. The reason for the difference arises from the fact that the act in this sacrifice must positively induce outward acts of praise, and for this reason must continue through every instant of the sacrifice" (Vita abscondita, disp. 7, sect. 1. parag. 2, n. 9, p. 512-513). Some light will be thrown on these words of Cienfuegos, when we consider what he has to say on the sacrifice of the Mass

351Prat (Theologie de saint Paul, l, 6, c. 2, parag. 3, Paris, 1908, p. 536) : "Or they may see in the two actions, two distinct sacrifices, and without denying the efficacy of the sacrifice of the Cross, they imagine that there is also a heavenly sacrifice different from the other in the manner of offering, somewhat as the Eucharist differs from the sacrifice in blood on Calvary; but this new opinion, suspect for its very novelty, has not the slightest foundation in the Epistle to the Hebrews". Indeed the Epistle absolutely excludes it

352Upon this head we have, in the present work, cited a number of passages from the Fathers where they ascribe to Christ in heaven some kind of offering of a victim. They use the words offering, oblation, and such like. Gregory the Great more than once speaks even of immolation in heaven. But as we have already said, immolation and offering are often used interchangeably. However that virtual oblation which we hold sufficiently covers the passages from the Fathers. Moreover presentation, whereby a thing is made present to God, is very closely akin to oblation or offering. But there is a very real difference between that presentation in which Christ manifests Himself to God, by simply abiding with Him who has already received Him, and the sacrificial offering in which a thing is handed over to God and received by Him. But what the Fathers attributed to the celestial Christ is the presentation of something already offered in the past, and not the offering of something to be made sacred. Generally this is clear from their teaching on the one unique sacrifice of our Lord, and especially from their deliberate exclusion of any liturgical ministration whatever as performed by Christ in heaven. In a word, to say that Christ offers in heaven is the same as to say that Christ is in heaven, the Victim, the offering (in the passive sense) or the reality offered. This is undoubtedly true, though no oblative action is performed in heaven, this action having been performed in the past. Even Vasquez in his Paraphrasis on Hebr., IX. 24, has no difficulty in admitting and teaching the presentation of Christ in heaven, understood in the same sense, for he writes: "Christ entering into heaven does not offer sacrifice, He does not pray anew, He merely appears and presents continually to the Father without new prayers the ancient offering of Himself made in this world. ', Because of the relation between the type and the antitype, there is something very similar worth noting in the entrance of the pontiff to the holy of holies, not without blood which he offereth for himself and for the people's ignorance (Hebr., IX-7). Here although St. Paul says that the blood is offered within the veil, nevertheless as B. Weiss (Der Brief an die Hebraer, p. 215) justly remarked, it is not the carrying of the blood to the propitiatory, or the sprinkling of the blood on it, that constituted the sacrificial offering, but all that was subsequent to the sacrifice, which had already been enacted outside the propitiatory.

353St. John Chrysostom, I think, has stated this with greater clearness than the other Fathers. For on the one hand, he shows Christ ascending into heaven "with the sacrifice that can appease the Father" that is, with the sacrifice offered on earth; and on the other, he shows the Father taking the sacrifice to Himself with joy: "Therefore He bore the first fruits of our nature to the Father; and the Father was so well pleased with the gift, because of the dignity of the offerer and the purity of what was offered, that receiving the gift from His own hands, and placing it close beside Himself, He said: Sit thou at my right hand' (Sermo in Ascensionem D. N. J. C., n. 3. P.G. 49, 464). The passage is quoted by Leo the Great, writing to the Emperor Leo, together with other testimonies which are collected at the end of the Epistle 165 (P.L. 54, 1183). We priests recite it in the II. Nocturn on

Monday within the Octave of the Ascension.

354Among modem theologians the best explanation of this teaching is given by M. J. Scheeben (Handbuch der katholischen Dogmatik, vol. 3, Frib-i-B., 1882, n. 1496, p. 445) : "Hence the heavenly offering of the sacrifice of the Cross comprises an exhibition or presentation of the same, in which the sacrifice persists, not indeed as a formal act, but virtually (and this as regards its internal and external constituent). Hence the victima immolata (the immolated Christ) persists as that which it has become by the immolation, a holocaust consumed by the divine fire in the odor of sweetness, and this in the most vivid and convincing manner, as though the immolation were just now completed; in which condition too it possesses all the worth and sanctity with which it was clothed in the very instant of the immolation". Hence what the author had said a little previously (ibid., p. 444) "We must rather consider the act of sacrifice which took place on the Cross, that is the willing surrender and immolation of the Victim which took place there, as an act which endures"—must be carefully interpreted in harmony with the passage quoted above, and with the whole of the subsequent number 1499.

355The reason of course is, as we have repeatedly said, that Christ is not offered to a real immolation (as Christ offered Himself to a real immolation in the Supper) by our symbolical immolation. Therefore take away from Christ His enduring condition of immolation, and you will find in our consecration no element in virtue of which Christ could be called a true victim.

356J Grimal in the third edition of his work (mentioned above) forcefully asserts this intrinsic condition of immolation of Christ in heaven (p. 191). Hence I cannot see why he later (p. 242) reduces the whole reality of this condition to something intentional on our part, or juridical, resting on the merits of Christ, neither of which is inherent to Christ as real form. Meantime (p. 192) he maintains that Christ the Lord still adores in heaven, because such adoration is essential to every rational creature, such as undoubtedly is the humanity of Christ. But surely it is the person not the nature that adores, and in this case the person could adore by the dispensation of the Incarnation, as long as on the part of the created nature hypostatically united to it, it was on the way to the proper glory of the Only-Begotten, which it has now in the created nature itself. For the time of annihilation has passed, that time during which Christ was in the condition of servant, clothed with the livery of a servant. Now however He is seated in His entirety at the right hand of God, He is in the proper condition of Lord, now in no point inglorious, passible, or mortal, or in the likeness of sinful flesh. "Verily become servant, He did not remain servant" (Chrysostom, cited above).

[M1]That's right, the hardcopy jumped straight from 3 to 5


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