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our faith in the twofold character of a sacrifice of atonement, and a sacrifice of peace-offering ; and of such a nature, that his blood as well as his body must be participated in by his people. And can any declaration show more fully the dignity and pre-eminent glory of out Redeemer? He did not claim a homage to himself, like that which merely belonged to the prophets, as the delegated messengers of heaven; but he claimed faith in himself personally, as the Saviour and Redeemer of mankind. He asserts to himself the character of the Author of man's salvation. He proposes himself as the first and the last, the beginning and the end, the Alpha and Omega, in the great scheme of human redemption. His body and his blood undoubtedly are here used as the emblems of his incarnation--of his being Christ manifest in the flesh, and especially of his painful death and passion as an atonement for sin. He here therefore offers himself to our faith as incarnate in the flesh, and especially as dying for us; as having his flesh torn, and his blood shed, for the great atonement: nothing less than this will suit the strong, emphatic, and extraordinary language of the text. None of the prophets, none of the apostles, ever used this language of themselves; and therefore Christ came for a purpose higher and superior to them all. They pointed to him, he pointed to himself. They said of him, “ Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world." “ Christ our passover is sacrificed for us.” He said, “ Keep the feast; I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me. " Except ye eat the flesh of the Son of Man, and drink his blood, ye have no life in you.” “I am come, that ye might have life, and that ye may have it more abundantly." They dare not drink the blood of the victims offered in the temple, for they were only types and emblems; but his blood was necessary for them, because he was the true sacrifice; and therefore they must not only be sprinkled with it, but be inwardly partakers of its His flesh and blood, therefore, here mean the great doctrines of his incarnation, and especially his death and passion ; and to believe and embrace these doctrines, and to receive him in the character of Redeemer and Saviour, as dying for us, and to be closely united to him in this character by faith, is signified by the phrase eating and drinking. To eat and to drink him is to believe in him, and to be united unto him by faith ; and to eat his flesh and drink his blood, is to believe in him in the character of our Redeemer, as shedding his blood for our redemp tion, as making on the cross, by himself, a full, perfect, and sufficient sacrifice, oblation, and satisfaction for the sins of the whole world. I am certain the words can mean nothing less than this; this explanation, and this only, satisfies all the conditions required for their full explanation. Nothing less than this can be intended; and more than this, any thing greater than this is impossible to be conceived. He that has come to this, needs nothing further to salvation ; he that falls short of it, must perish everlastingly; for in him only is life, and all out of him is death ; so that we may exclaim like the martyr of old, “None but Christ! none but Christ! Worthy is the Lamb that was slain to receive power, and riches, and wisdom, and strength, and honour, and glory, and blessing !"
We have thus seen, brethren, the design of our Lord in using the singular language of the text. It was to propose himself personally to our faith as the author and sole cause of our salvation ; and particularly in the character of a dying Saviour. Two questions now remain to be briefly considered; the first is, as to the nature of that faith which he requires at our hands; and the second, the effects to be derived from it. Now, as to the nature of this faith, it is evidently the very highest faith of which man is capable that he requires; it is not a mere cold and formal belief in Him, as a great and admirable teacher, or a pattern of moral excellency, and patience, and resignation, which is all the faith which we, in the present day, are inclined to give him ; and which nearly all of us think quite as much as can reasonably be required, and some think even this going too far in the matter, that even this is almost a piece of extravagance, and foolishly fanatical. No; I repeat again, it is not a mere receiving of him as a great moral teacher, an admirable example of benevolence, a pattern of morality, and patience, and resignation; ideas which are so suited to the indifferent and pretended learning, and boasted wisdom of the present self-conceited age, which people are always praising and lauding as the most enlightened and rational, and I know not what besides, but which deserves a very different character, being really destitute beyond most other ages in wisdom, in heart, in goodness; being scarcely any thing else than all outward show, and display, and empty pretence. No, it is not, I repeat the third time, such a faith as is consistent with our ideas which Christ requires, but one infinitely higher and more exalted : it is such a faith as unites us to Christ, and makes us one with him ; such a faith as feeds upon him, and is wholly absorbed and exerted towards him. For hear what our Lord saith :“Whoso eateth my flesh, and drinketh my blood, he dwelleth in me, and I in him." This faith is therefore such, that it casts off all other confidence and dependence,' and is fixed solely on Christ, in the character of our crucified Redeemer; looks to him alone for salvation ; takes refuge in his bleeding wounds; nay, dwells as it were in his very heart; is deeply affected and moved by the continual thought of his grace and mercy, and feels itself all the obligations to love and obedience which that grace and mercy lay us under. Brethren, in the discourse, of which the text forms a part, our Lord compares himself to the manna and bread which came down from heaven. Now, this manna came day by day ; had any intermission of this gracious gift been suffered by God, the Israelites must have perished ; and so is it with the true bread which came down from heaven; Christ is that true bread ; and he, his flesh and blood, must be our daily food, or our spiritual life will perish for the want of it. Are we then daily partakers of this food ? do we daily feed on him in our hearts by faith ? are we living branches in him, the true vine? We are all engrafted into him ; but has the outward and visible grafting taken effect, so that we derive life and support from the parent stock ? Do the healing and lifegiving juices of the plant flow into us, so as to make the union between us and bim complete ? Alas, brethren, of how few of us can it be truly said, that though we have a name to live, we really live! We are only dry, and sere, and withered branches ; and when the holy Scriptures are read, though we hear the words of revelation outwardly, we do not at the same time partake of the living bread from heaven. When we pray, we are not by faith partakers of the body and blood of Christ, the words of the preached gospel do not become to us the body and blood of Christ. Though sprinkled with the blood of Christ in the waters of baptism, they have not yet become to us Christ crucified ; 'we have not died in heart and life unto him, nor risen with him unto that newness of life required of us by his gospel. In short, we have not that faith which Christ requires ; for wherever that faith is, there is Christ; and in every act of worship we perform, it makes us eat the flesh and drink the blood of Christ.
The blessing arising from this faith is the last thing proposed for consideration. Now, that blessing is life; not the mere animal life of the body, but the life of the soul ; such a life, that though a man were dead yet shall he live, and whosoever liveth that life shall never die. It is the life of faith, compared with which all other life is but a state of death; for it does not denote simply being or existence, but well-being, a rising to the full perfection and excellency of which our natures are capable; a state of pardon and acceptance with God; peace in our own hearts; the calm satisfaction which is derived from a sense of the Divine approbation; and the expectation of being for ever thus approved, and rising from one height of perfection to another, in an endless state of felicity. Such a life is really to live; it is to be what God made us to be a life of faith, a life of hope, and a life of the Divine love; a life of patience, and resignation, and goodness, and holiness, and sanctification, both in body and soul. Such a life God would have us live; for such an end he made us ; for this end he sent down his own Son to redeem us, and his own Spirit for our sanctification. Let us then, brethren, aim at attaining this life, lest we should remain dead whilst life is offered us. Let us so frequently set before us Christ dying for us, till his love constrain us to live unto him alone, who loved us and gave himself for us.
CONTINENTAL CHURCHES: With Observations on the Romish Worship, and the State of Religion Abroad
No. VII.-The Cathedral of Malines. Midway between Antwerp and Brussels is situated the city of Mechlin, or Malines, the seat of an archbishop, who is also invested with the title of Primate of Belgium. The see was formed, and made metropolitan, at the request of Philip II., by a bull of Pope Paul IV.; and Antoine-Perrenot de Granville, a Spanish cardinal, was conseçrated first archbishop in 1559, In 1801, a concordat was concluded by Pius VII., appointing the bishoprics of Tournay, Ghent, Namur, Liège, Aix-la-Chapelle, Trèves, and Mayence, as suffragans to the see of Malines; and such, with the addition of Bruges, is its present constitution. The diocese comprises the provinces of Antwerp and Brabant, each of which is under the control of a vicar-general. Eight canons are attached to the cathedral; in the province of Antwerp the number of officiating Clergy is 10 curés of the first class, 11 of the second, and 362 assistants; in that of Brabant, 12 of the first class, 17 of the second, and 625 assistants. The salaries are paid out of the public treasury. That of the archbishop is fixed at 100,420 francs (40161.) per annum ; but so large a proportion of this sum is devoted to the support of the vicar-general and canons, that his net income does not exceed 21,000 fr. or 8401. per annum. The allowances to the different orders of the Clergy vary from 200 to 2000 francs, or from 8l. to 801. per annum. It
may be thought that the incomes of these priests and prelates are small in comparison with those of the bishops and pastors of our own Church ; but the difference is rather in appearance than reality. Be it remembered that they are unmarried men; that little or nothing is required of them in the way of hospitality; that they live in privacy, almost amounting to seclusion; and that even in public no episcopal rank is kept up. On the occasion of a recent confirmation at Ostend, the Bishop of Bruges entered the town in a sort of covered cart, with some half dozen attendants, mounted on job horses, without saddles.
The patron of Malines, to whom also the cathedral is dedicated, is Saint Rombaud. This saint, according to the tradition of the Romish Church, was the son of one of the kings of Ireland. Returning from Rome, whither he had recently been consecrated to the archbishopric of Dublin, by Pope Stephen III., he stopped at Malines, with the intention of preaching the gospel to a vast body of unbelievers, who were there congregated. While engaged in the pious task; he was assassinated on the 24th of June, A.D. 775. A yearly festival is cele brated in honour of his memory, on the 1st of July. His tomb was visited for a long succession of years by vast multitudes of pilgrims, who resorted thither for the purchase of indulgences; and the revenues thus amassed were at length appropriated to the erection of a church in the vicinity of the convent, where his relics were deposited. The building was commenced in the latter part of the 12th century, and an inscription, in Flemish, records the completion of the immense roof in the year 1451. There is a marked difference between the architecture of the choir, and that of the body of the church, which clearly dates from a period considerably more ancient. Both are in the Gothic style ; but the choir is more light and elegant. The superb tower, begun in 1452, has never been completed. Its height, as it now stands, is 348 feet; and it was intended to have been one-third higher, and surmounted by a spire. At the present elevation, it commands an extensive prospect, comprehending the cities of Brussels and Antwerp; and an inscription commemorates the ascent of Louis XV. for the purpose of viewing the surrounding country. To this height it was raised, as recorded in a Flemish verse, in the year 1513. A magnificent clock, and a fine set of carillons, are suspended in the tower. It is remarkable, that the whole weight of the tower, which must be immense, is entirely supported upon the arch of the great western portico.
The portal, at the entrance of the cathedral, was executed after a design by F. Van Geel ; as were also the statues of the Magdalen and the two saints, which are placed near it. On either side is a group in marble, by Lucas Fayd'herbe, a sculptor of considerable eminence, a native of Malines, and pupil of Rubens. To the same artist is attributed the altar-table in the small chapel behind the choir ; and the various carvings in wood, as well as the statue of the patron saint, are also his performances. The maitre-autel was erected at the expense of Andrew Cousens, fifth archbishop of Malines; and the shrine of St. Rombaud, above the altar, was the munificent donation of James Boonen, fourth archbishop. It supplies the place of the original shrine, which was stolen and melted down in the year 1578. The ark of the tabernacle, in which the Host is deposited, is of massive silver, gilt, and highly ornamented. On the statue of St. Rombaud, before the altar, are the following chronographs
In front.... SanCtVs RVMOLDVs
The marble screen, in front of the choir, was erected in the year 1672; and in 1715 were added the porches, on either side, which separate the exterior space around the choir from the body of the church. Upon the walls of this enclosure is a series of twenty-five small pictures, illustrating the life of St. Rombaud, which were preserved for a long time after his death in a small oratory, which the saint had erected on the site afterwards occupied by the churchyard. The fifth of these paintings, reckoning from the sacristy, is attributed to Jean Van Eyck, of Bruges, inventor of painting in oil. It is said that they are at least 300 years old, having been executed in the 15th century. During the civil wars of the 16th century, and again during the outrages of the French Revolution, they were removed to a place of temporary concealment. An inscription, in a corresponding frame, commemorates each event. The former runs thus :
ACTA MARTYRUM ET MIRACULA
PRO AVITO SUO IN PATRIAM AMORE
SPLENDORI PRISTINO RESTITUI
CUJUS BENEFICII MEMORIAM
HAC TABULA CÆTERIS ADDITA