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warms the heart, and revives the hope of his people, who confess to his praise, “ Thy love is better than wine."
Jacob, in his patriarchal blessing, speaking of Judah, from whom Christ the Shiloh was to come, saith of bim, “He washed his garments in wine, and his clothes in the blood of the grapes : his eyes shall be red with wine;" which may, says the truly excellent Dr. Gill, be applied to Christ, to the garment of his human nature, which through his sufferings and death, was like a vesture dipped in blood, and he became red in his apparel; and his eyes red with wine may denote the joy and pleasure that sparkled in his eyes, when he shed his blood upon the cross, enduring that, and despising the shame of it, for the joy of the salvation of his people.
Secondly, we observe, as Christ took the cup, and ordained it to be a sacred, commemorative sign, symbol, and mémorial of his blood, saying, “ This cup is the New Testament in my blood ;" so he also gave thanks, or blessed it, as he did before, when he took the bread, Hence the cup in the Lord's supper is styled, “ the cup of blessing which we bless,” (1. Cor. x. 16.) alluding to the act of the Administrator, in which the whole church present joins with him in the blesssing and praise offered up to the Eternal Three, for all that love, mercy, and grace, expressed in the gift of Christ's person, and salvation by him.
What were the express words our Lord used we know not. But we are like most rightly to conceive, that the subject matter of his blessing and thanksgiving to his divine Father, was, for all the glo, rious fruits, blessings, and benefits, of his most precious blood-shedding.
That it was a distinct act from that of blessing the bread, is clear, from Mat, thew's account of it, who says, were eating, Jesus took bread and bless ed it (or gave thanks) and brake it, and gave it to the disciples, and said, Take, eat, this is my body; and he took the cup and gave thanks, and gave it them.” See Matt. xxvi. 27, 28.
Thirdly, we obserye that he having took the cup, gave thanks, blessed it,
« As they appointing it to be a figure and memorial of his blood, he gave it to his disciples, saying, according to Matthew, “Drink ye all of it,” and Mark adds, “And they all drank of it," Mark xiv. 28. « This cup is the New Testament in my blood," an emblem and representation of my blood, through the shedding of which, all the blessings of the everlasting covenant, such as peace, pardon, righteousness and eternal life flow forth to the people of God: “This do ye, as oft as ye drink it, in remembrance of me.”
As they received the bread, and were commanded by Christ to eat it, as expressive of their faith in him, the bread of life; so they were commanded to drink the wine in remembrance of Christ's blood which was about to be shed in the garden, and his soul to be poured out with his strong cries and tears on the cross for the remission of their sins.
Having considered and set before you the institution, I come lastly to observe the use, end, and design of it; which we may easily understand from our Lord's own words to be for a remeinbrance of him ; he saying, when he gave the bread, * This do in remembrance (or for a remembrance) of me.” And having given the cup, he said, “This do ye, as oft as ye drink it, in remembrance of me.” It also most clearly appears from the account which Paul has given us of this sacred institution, in which he informs us of the significancy of its several parts, its use, and end, that it is to bring Christ and his sufferings to remembrance. For as the bread and wine are symbols of Christ's body and blood; so the breaking of the bread is a memorial of our Lord's body which was broken for us; and the wine as poured out, being distinct and separate from the bread, is a memorial of the sufferings which our Lord sustained, when he made his soul an offering for sin. And believers in their observance of this ordinance should be employed in a particular manner in thinking upon, and calling to mind the love of Christ, to recollect with wonder, gratitude, and praise, his unknown sorrows, agonies, and sufferings: Christ being here represented
as their substitute and sacrifice, as having been made sin and a curse. He is here set forth as “evidently crucified before their eyes," as having finished the trans, gression, made an end of sin, made re, conciliation for iniquity, and brought in everlasting righteousness; and as such be is here the peculiar and proper object and subject of our remembrance. His sufferings and passion are what our minds and thoughts should be engaged and em ployed about, and our faith should here be exercised on the slain and bleeding Lamb of God. For as the breaking the bread, is a memorial of our Lord's body being broken, it reminds us of his death on the cross, which was a most painful one. The cross was a rack, as well as gibbet, in which were many deaths contrived in one. The body of our Lord, being as one justly observes, of most excellent crasis, exact and just temperament, his senses were more acute and delicate than ordinary; and all the time of his sufferings they so continued, not in the least blunted, dulled, or rebated by the pains he suffered. The death of