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sacrifice of the mass was celebrated.” Here both the popish bishops evidently lay the emphasis so as that the sacred host may have the credit of working the miracles. Few protestants in this country know what sort of prayers are offered in the service of the mass. At the consecration the worshippers are directed to “ make an act of faith in the real presence of their Saviour's body and blood, soul and divinity, under the sacramental veils.” Offer your whole self unto him, in the host," and through him to his Father.” “When the priest elevates the sacred host, bow down yourself, with the greatest reverence, humility, and love to him,” that is, to the sacred host, “ and say, I adore thee, my Lord and Saviour etc.” | This is a very brief specimen of what was going on at the time these afllicted persons were supposed to be cured; and the whole affair was evidently got up to strengthen the faith of implicit believers in transubstantiation. Now what can heretics say to these miracles wrought by the sacred host ? They say, “ The whole was proved most notorious, arrant frauds,” etc. Since these exposures, we have beard 110 more of Hohenloe's legerdemain tricks. Can impudence blush ?
Prescience an attribute of Jehovah, of which the host and all idols are destitute. They are challenged by God to manifest this perfection :“ Produce your cause saith the Lord ; bring forth your strong reasons, saith the king of Jacob. Show the things that are to come hereafter, that we may know that ye are gods : yea, do good, or do evil, that we may be dismayed, and behold it together.” (Isaiah xli. 21-23.) We learn from this text that we cannot know that being to be God, who cannot predict future events. Now when did the host deliver any predictions? If this be too hard for it, let it exert its power by doing something. We are neither nice, nor extravagant in our demands. “ Let it do good, or evil ; no, the host is quite as inactive as a statue, and can do neither good, nor harm.
* Garden of the Soul, page 80.
† Missal, page 73.
Creation is the work of God; and he who cannot do this work is not divine. “ The gods that have not made the heavens and the earth, even they shall perish from the earth, and from under these heavens.” (Jer. x. 11.) We know that a host is capable of perishing; but it can give no better evidence than any other idol can, that it created the heavens and the earth.
The true God cannot be thrown away! but idols may, and so may the host : “In that day a man shall cast away his idols of silver, and his idols of gold, which they made, each one for himself to worship, to the moles and to the bats.” (Isaiah ii. 20, and xxxi. 7.) “And he took away the strange gods, and the idol out of the house of the Lord, and all the altars that he had built in the mount of the house of the Lord, and in Jerusalem, and cast them out of the city.” (2 Chron. xxxiii. 15.) It would be rather easier to toss about the host than these massive divinities.
The true God cannot be stolen. But this has sometimes been the fate of idols, and of the host. “Wherefore,” says Laban to Jacob,“hast thou stolen my gods?” Micah said to the children of Dan, “ Ye have taken away my gods which I have made, and the priest, and ye are gone away; and what have I more ? ” (Gen. xxxi. 10; Judges xviii. 24.) In the Missal, under the head,
Respecting Defects occurring in the Mass,” see Extracts, we read,“Should the consecrated host disappear, either by accident, or by wind, or miracle, or be devoured by some animal, and cannot be found, then let another be consecrated. If, after consecration, a gnat, a spider, or any such thing fall into the chalice, let the priest swallow it with the blood, if he can; but if he fear danger and have a loathing, let him take it out, and wash it with wine, and when mass is ended, burn it, and cast it and the washing into holy ground.” Here it is confessed that the divine Saviour
be blown away “by winds.” . This seems rather odd, because we read that the winds as well as the seas obey him, and that when he said to the tempest, “ Peace, be
still;" instantly there was a great calm. But when the host, the popish god, mounts the wind, he cannot guide his Pegasus, but is run away with. The true Christ can ride in the tempest and direct the storm. It is confessed too that this popish god may
66 be devoured by some animal.” For instance, by a mouse, a rat, or a pig; this god may be stolen and devoured by a vile quadruped ! If the thief could be caught, what would they do with it? Do with it! why worship it to be sure, on account of the divinity within it ! No; the villain must be punished. If a spider get into the chalice, the priest may catch the rogue; and as it may have tasted the contents, or, at least, some portion may adhere to it so closely that the priest cannot separate
and as every separate particle of the consecrated element contains " whole Christ, body and blood, soul and divinity ;" here it is clearly made out that God is stolen, and either“ devoured”orintended so to be. Now the holy catholic and apostolic church has decreed in this case, most equitably, that the devouring thief shall be devoured. “Let the priest swallow it with the blood, if he can.” The if, I presume, is quite unnecessary; for, considering how many camels a priest has to swallow, there can be no fear of a spider sticking fast in his throat. “ But if he fear danger, from what ? not from the spider, surely, when God enters the belly along with it! If he have but faith, he may cheerfully sing, when he has finished the draught, "I will fear no evil, for thou art with me !" To fear danger must imply a mean opinion of the god. But if the priest should “have a loathing,” why then, shame on him, I say, if his stomach should refusé a whole Christ, because he happened to be accompanied with a spider; he would deserve a good roasting in purgatory for his squeamishness. But if, after all, the priest boggle and refuse to devour the thief, he is to “wash and burn it; and to cast it and the washing into holy ground.” Now if the insect had a particle of the consecrated matter either in it, or about it, when cast into the fire, then whole Christ would be burned along with
it: and that the papists suppose the insect to be in possession of Christ is pretty manifest from the direction to bury the ashes in holy ground; for they do not consider a mere spider to be holy, or to be entitled to christian burial; it is because Christ is united to the spider, that it receives so honourable a funeral. Now this is really worse than the Jews: they crucified the true Christ, it is true ; but the apostle bears them testimony, they did it in ignorance. For had they known, says he, “ They would not have crucified the Lord of glory." But the papists, on the supposition that the Lord of glory is attached to the fly,command it to be burned. Neither Jew nor heathen ever matched this :- to throw the god they worshipped into fire !
The true God cannot tumble down and dirty himself. I suppose I need not stay to prove this. Buť heathen and popish gods are liable to such accidents. Dagon fell before the ark. (1 Sam. v. 3, 4.) And, If the consecrated host, or any part of it, fall upon the ground, let it be reverently taken up, and the place where it fell cleansed, and a little scraped, and let the dust or scrapings of that nature, be thrown into ground."* If his godship should fall, he is to be reverently taken up. Very pious. But suppose, in a procession, he should have the mishap to fall into a heap of ordure, I wonder who could reverently take him up and eat him ! And how delicious a job would it be to scrape up the mass on which he fell! and to deposit the sacred scrapings in holy ground !
The true God cannot be taken captive. I sure this requires no proof. But heathen and popish gods have suffered this calamity.
66 And shall carry captives into Egypt their gods.” (Dan. xi. 8.) And that the popish god has been sent into captivity, take the following proof: The Abbe de la Mennais, in proof of the disbelief of the youth of France in the doctrines of the catholic church, states, that he recently detected
Extracts, p. 11.
forty of the students of the college of Paris, when at mass, secreting the consecrated wafer, instead of swallowing it; and that they wrote letters to their friends, informing them what they had done, and closing their letters with the wafers instead of wax.* This is a singular sort of drudgery to impose upon divinities. Can God be stuck to a piece of paper, and made to keep the secret of a gallant's amorous epistle to his mistress ? The educated youth of Paris see through the cheat, and so do the priests. If the host were really Christ in his humanity and divinity, then God was really sent with these letters of love, and in the shape of a wafer, preserved the secret until it reached its destination. The most monstrous absurdities of heathenism were nothing in comparison of this !
God cannot be burned. But heathen gods have been tried in the fire and consumed : “ And when they had left their gods there, David gave a commandment, and they were burned with fire.” (1 Chron. xiv. 12, see also 2 Kings xix. 18.) I have given an instance in which the papists themselves have directed a burning of insects to which their god is presumed to be attached ; and who must himself, of course, in such a case, share the fate of his little companion. A papist does not pretend that the host will not consume in the fire.
Gods, that can give no evidence of life or power, are not truly divine; but such are the gods of the heathen and of the Romanists : “Their idols are silver and gold; the work of men's hands. They have mouths, but they speak not; eyes have they, but they see not; they have ears, but they hear not; noses have they, but they smell not ; they have hands, but they handle not ; feet have they, but they walk not; neither speak they through their throat." “ They lavish gold out of the bag, and weigh silver in the balance, and hire a goldsmith ; and he maketh it a god : they fall down, yea, they worship it. They bear him upon the shoulder, they carry him, and set him in his place, and
* Christian Observer for March, 1829, page 184.