Philip Freeman.

The principles of divine service; an enquiry concerning the true manner of understanding and using the order for morning and evening prayer, and for the administration of the Holy Communion in the English Church (Volume 1) online

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minator towards the close of the third ccntiu-y'", has

' Vide infra, vol. ii., rliap. on Prim. Ijitiirt,'y. Tlic datr of St. .Mark's
Liturgy is believed to be about a.d. 200.

^ Cassiau, ap MabiJIon, I)e Lit. Gall., j). WKS. lie writes iu the fifth
rcutury, but is iloubtless deseribiug eustouis f)f long stauding.

' Tini. Kpist. Can., c. xiii., ap. Biiigh. XIII. ix. .'J.

'" Vide Nealc, Gen Introd., p. 67.

\\)2 TUK rUINC'lPI.K.S or divine service. [cilAV. II.

to this (lay a most remarkable regulation, viz. that the
Eucharist moj/ not be celebrated excepting on Satur-
day and Sunday, or on great Festivals of our Lord or
the blessed Virgin jMary. This probably represents,
though perhaps it enforces too rigidly, the ordinary
usage of the Church of Caesarea at the time of St.
Gregory aforesaid, which would thus accord with the
Alexandrine usage just referred to. We find St. Basil,
bishop of the same Csesarea about seventy years after,
testifying that they had Communion on four days of
the week, viz. Wednesday and Friday, in addition to
Satiu'day and Sunday "". The Church at large, again,
by an almost universal provision, has declared her
mind that the Eucharist is of the nature of a festival
thing. Whence, otherwise, the rule that none should
participate in the Eucharistic elements ofteuer than
once in the same day ? Why not twice or thrice
a-day or even hourly ? There is nothing in the
world that can account for this prohibition on the part
of the Church, but her strongly entertained mind that
participation more than once in a day would evacuate
the great rite of some important and indispensable
feature. And what can that be? Its sacramental
efficacy ? Surely not. The reason manifestly is this :
that in daily participation the Eucharistic act is carried
to the utmost limit it is capable of, consistently with
its character as the high Festival of Christianity.

I have only to add here on this subject, that the
Church seems early to have rued having innovated
upon the apostolic usage by the introduction of daily
celebration. There is certainly a remarkable and
ominous synchronism between this change and the
grievous falling off of that primitive custom of weekly

" St. Basil, Ep. 2S9, ap. Biugli. ib. 3.


reception of the mysteries, which the Church has
never yet been able to bring back as the badge of
Christian membership. It is in the time of St.Chryso-
stom, St. Jerome, St. Ambrose, and St. Augustine, that
we first find daily celebration to have obtained au
extens^ive footing in the Church. The Churches of
Constantinople and Carthage, of Rome and of Spain,
now provided a daily Eucharist ° for such as desired
it ; and these great Doctors are busied with settling
a question, comparatively new to the Church, as to the
expediency of such frequent reception. And it is at
this very time that we also first hear, from the same
writers, of Christian men, alike in the East and in the
AVest, contenting themselves with Communion 07ice
a-year ; which still remains as the allowed minimum
in the Western Church, England only excepted. " If
it be our daily bread," says St. Ambrose, " why dost
thou then receive it once a-year only, as the Greeks
have come to do in the East ^ ?" This is a fact which
we shall do well to ponder. I shall have occasion to
return to it in connection with the duty of the English
Church at the present day.

" Si. Jerome, Ep. 50, 58; St. Aug., Ep. ad Jan. 118. Yiilc Biiigli.,
XV. ix. 4.

p St. Ami), dc Sacr. v. 4.



"vVnd tliey shall bring aU your brethren for an offering unto the
Lord out of all nations, to My holy mountain, to Jenisalem, saith the
Lord. And I will also take of them for priests and for Levites."

"That I sliould be the niinister of Jesus Christ unto the Gentiles,
ministering the gospel of God, that the offering up of the Gentiles niiglit
be acceptable, being sanctified by the Holy Ghost."

The necessary existence of some kind of ordinary
service follows as an obvious corollary from that or-
dained infrequency (comparatively) of the Eucharistic
rite, which has been spoken of in the preceding sec-
tion. The character, position, and functions, again,
of such ordinary service, may be in a great measure
deduced from the sacramental principles we were lately
engaged in tracing, and of which we may now resume
the consideration.

It was well said of old, insomuch that the saying
has passed into what may be called an axiom of
the Church, that " the Sacraments are the extension
of the Incarnation." They are, that is to say, the
instruments whereby (to use the words of St. Paul)
" the Body of Christ increaseth with the increase of
God'^" "Christians are really, though mysteriously,
incorporated into the incarnate Body of the Lord Je-
sus Christ, by virtue of their incorporation into that
Church which is His mystical Body '." Thus is the
mystical Body true to the qualities of a body in this

1 Col. ii. 19 ; Eph. iv. IG.

' Senn. by Rev. C. T. Smith, ubi supra. So Hooker: "In Him,
even according to His Manhood, we, aecovdiug to our heavenly being,
are as branches in that root out of which they grow." (V. Ivi. 7.)


respect even, as well as in others, that it too " grow-
etli," " until we all," the parts of that Body taken
together, "come to a perfect man, to the measure of
the full stature of Christ ^"

But how are the Sacraments empowered to be
"the extension of the Incarnation;" the means, that
is, of extending it, so as that it shall include conti-
nually more and more members ? The nature of this
Divine Economy would seem to be as follows. There
is in spiritual things, as in natural, causation. Christ's
Sacraments produce their effects, not in the manner
of a holy charm, in virtue merely of His promise io
them, but as causes, by reason of His presence in them.
For the natural Body of Christ, with all its wondrous
doings and characters, was to be as a germ, no less
than a type, to that greater mystical Body of His, which
Avas to bear as a whole the impress of those doings
and characters. And that the Body, as a whole, might
be conformed to its type and exemplar, it was neces-
sary that the several members and parts of it should
be first so conformed, each one by itself. In order to
this, then, the grace of the aforesaid actions and cha-
racters of the incarnate Word was gathered into those
Sacraments which were destined to be the instrmnents
of the entire Body's growth. The instruments of in-
grafting were no rude or random ones, but worthy of
the Divine Artificer of this new masterpiece of creation,
the mystical Jiody of the incarniilc \\'oki). They were
so fashioned as to contain within them, by an especial
fiat of the Divine Will, the virtue of those actions and
characters of the W^oiU) made fiesh, in conformity to
which the bettered estate of man was tu consist. It
is therefore that they are instruments of [)o\ver to

• Eph. iv. i:i.
o 2


ingraft into Clirist's Body, and to produce conformity to
IJis likeness, because they are themselves replete with
the virtue and potency of His Person and actions *.

The Sacraments then being of this nature ; thus
c])itomizing, so to speak, the Person and actions of
the Lord Jesus Christ, in order to convey the virtue
of them : the Christian life was to be the development
of these sacramental compendia into suitable action ;
that so out of a sacramental conformity imparted once
for all, might grow an actual or acted conformity.
(Conversely, of course, the Sacraments are the con-
centration of the Christian life into certain intensified
and all-including formnlas.)

In this consideration is to be found the true answer
to every question concerning Christian practice and
duty. As our natural duties as men arise from the
position in which, as men, we find ourselves placed, —
duties, domestic, patriotic, or international, — so do our
supranatural duties and functions, as Christians, arise
from the nature and particulars of the estate into
which, as Christians, we are admitted. As no man
knows what are his rights and duties as a citizen,
otherwise than by consideration of the constitution
under which he lives ; so, of what we are, or what
bound or designed to do, as Christians, we can form
no idea, but by re-perusal of that twofold charter
which has admitted us to the privileges of the spiritual
kingdom. The Sacraments, therefore, are really fun-
damental to. the whole matter. To them, and through
them to the Person and actions of Christ, the grace

' Rom. vi. 3 — 5 : " Know ye uot, that so mauy of us as were baptized
into Christ Jesus, were baptized into His Death ? Tlierefore we are
buried with Him by baptism into death. . . If we have been planted to-
gether in (rather, made to partake of the nature of) the likeness of His
Death, we shall also [partake of the nature of] His Resurrection."


whereof they embody and convey, we must look.
Whatsoever is involved or implied in them, that is our
position, and thence flows onr business and calling as
Christian men. The Sacraments dcscril)e and set out
to ns, how compendiously soever, the duties of our
Christian estate and citizenship. It is in full accord-
ance with this statement, that the Epistles, especially
St. Paul's, are mainly directed, as will be seen on
careful consideration of them, to unfoldl/if/ the duties
of Christians, arisiny out of the position given them bij
the Sacraments'^ ; — a truth which, had it been duly
borne in mind, would have done away with all suspi-
cion of any possible rivalry or contrariety between the
true doctrine of the Sacraments and that of the writ-
ten Word; or of any incompatibility between zeal
for the one and implicit reverence for, and submis-
sion to, the other.

Ihit the Sacraments arc twofold. Do they then, it
may be asked, respectively set out to us two different
lines or classes of duties? Not so; they do but ex-
hibit the selfsame duties under two different aspects ;
following herein, it will be perceived, the analogy of
that one series of actions of om* Lord, whose twofold
aspects they respectively embody. The Christian es-
tate, though exhibited to us under two forms in the
Sacraments, is, like the doulilc \ision of Pharaoh,
strictly one; its series of actions and duties is one,
though consecrated, as it were, to different [)urposcs
by these two or(Hnaiu;es resj)ectively. Every Chiis-
tian duty wouhl .-ippear to have, or to be capable
of, a distinct rehition to either Sacrament; it has u
lower or a higher standing, ascends to a lower or
u higher sphere, and so is in some sense a dillerent

" See, in nolo G, quotalious from the Apostolic Epislles.

19S THE nuNcirr.r.s of divine service. [cnA?. n.

thins:, accordiiiij as it is viewed in connection with the
one Sacrament or witli tlic otlier. The selfsame phe-
nomenon has been ah'cady pointed out in reference to
our Lord's actions. And as they appertained, under one
aspect, to His Incarnation, and under another to His
Priesthood ; as they were, in one character, in order
to the renewal of humanity, and in another in order
to its acceptable presentation : so is it with our actions
also. Viewed in connection with Baptism, they are
the carrying out into action all that Baptism implies ;
the making good of the estate and condition of death
to sin and new birth to holiness ; of the renunciation
of the dominion of sin, and obedience to the laws of
God's kingdom ; of putting off the spirit of bondage,
and putting on the adoption of the sons of God ; with
whatever else Baptism involves. In a word, the whole
Christian life, in all its parts and acts, is, from the
baptismal point of view, a persistence in that condition
of renewing and sanctifying union to the perfected
Humanity of our Lord, in which the essence of Bap-
tism consists. And this aspect alone, it is needless to
say, can the Christian life possess for those who have
as yet been made partakers of but one Sacrament
only, that of new birth, renewal, and adoption. What-
ever aspect or colour the having been made partakers
of the other Sacrament may impart to the actions of
a Christian, for them, at present, no sucli second as-
pect exists.

But for those who have been made partakers of the
other Sacrament, the Christian life, in all its parts,
owns a second and a superadded aspect. Viewed in
connection with that rite, it is now the carrying out
into act of those priestly and sacrificial relations which
Eucharistic celebration and participation involve, as


before of those re-creative ones which belong to Bap-
tism. Life is no longer merely a continual dying and
rising, a daily putting off the old man and putting on
the new, an estate of adoption and sonship. Though
it is still all this, it is now, over and above, a con-
tinual sacrifice of that which dies and rises again ;
a reiterated, life-long oblation of the renewed man ;
and partakes, as the means of its sustentation in this
elevated condition, of peculiar effluxes of the Divine
Nature ^, by feeding on a sacrifice. It has become, in
short, an estate of priesthood unto God, involving
functions and powers derived immediately from the
one perfect Priesthood, as were those former ones
from the one perfect Manhood, of Christ.

Now the ordinance of Public Worship is only one
particular instance of that development of the Sacra-
ments, that carrying out of them into detailed action,
which has been here spoken of. Were those ordi-
nances of such a nature as to terminate in themselves ;
did they convey a gift and a position of which no
subsequent account was to be rendered by the re-
ceiver; or were sacramental participation the whole
matter ; then doubtless there had been, besides and
beyond the Sacraments, no other duties of direct ser-
vice and ritual towards God. It is because the deeds
of a life, as well ritual as ordinary, are potentially
wrapped up, as the oak within the acorn, in the
reception of either Sacrament, — it is therefore that,
by the necessity of the case, there must be other
Christian rites continuativc of these. Tiic being of

" 2 Pet. i. l : " Whcrcliy are f^ivcii to us" (liavc l)ccii bestowed uimii
us, Sdwprp^ai,) " exceeding great and precious promises," (ratlicr, " the
most exceeding precious promised gifts," iirayyisixara,) "lliat l)_v (liesc
ye might be" (become) "partakers of tlie Divine Nature."


man stands in need, for its maintenance in tliose
refined spiritual relations to God, upon which in the
Sacraments it enters, of some more spiritual and
ritual media than the ordinary actions of life supply.
Whatever in the way of direct mutual communication
between God and man, is compendiously transacted
in the Sacraments, has to be done in a more deve-
loped and leisurely manner by actions of a corre-
sponding and kindred nature.

The actual celebration of the Sacraments, accord-
ingly, lias ever been accompanied, at the very time,
by such actions, — spiritual exercises of detailed prayer
and profession of faith on the one hand, and of intel-
lectual reception of Christian mysteries, as contained
in Holy Scripture, on the other. These, though
not ^ essential to the validity of the Sacraments,
(which are both transacted, as to their essentials, with
certain short ordained formulae of words,) are the
proper development of what is contained in them ;
and they serve for the germ, and furnish the pattern,
and in some degree the substance, of more ordinary
offices of worship.

Is there, as the common feature of both Sacraments,
entire union to Christ, — a union which supposes, on
the part of man, repentance, faith, love, and other
Christian graces ; and consists on God's part of an
essential Presence vouchsafed? Those graces must
be provided with a fitting vehicle and expression.
There must be prayer of some sort. That Presence
must be sought there, where it is specially promised ;

'' The essential formula for valid Baptism is known to be very brief :
for proof that the essential formula for Eucharistic Consecration is
proportionately compendious, see below, vol. ii., chapter on Primitive
Form of Liturgy.


viz. in the common prayer of the many members of
the One Body. Does the same union extend to
all the saving actions of Christ, and must these be
severally apprehended by the understanding, and
embraced by faith and love with the heart ? A
necessity arises for knowledge, to be attained l)y
adoring meditation of the whole economy of grace.
And this too must be sought more especially there
(viz. in the Church's public assemblies) where lie who
is "our Wisdom'''' as \vell as ''our Eighteousness" is
especially present in the one character no less than in
the other. Has, again, either Sacrament its own pro-
per gift ; the one regeneration and renewal, the other
priestly acceptableness and privilege ? These estates
obviously require, for their continued maintenance
"after their kind," suitable ritual media of action and
reception. For both purposes, ascendat oraiio ut de-
iscendat gratia''. 1. That the renewed estate maybe
persevered in, recourse must be had not only to the
other Sacrament, which is the high festival of its
being, but also, (since that by its ordained nature
cannot be continual), to more ordinary means of
growth and perfection. For daily renewal, daily
prayer must be made; that it may be according to
knowledge, there must be daily exercise in the law
of God ; that the functions of the new estate may be
duly performed, there must be praise, which is the
life of the divinely conformed. That all these things,
again, may be done in their perfection, the prayer,
the meditation, and the praise, nuist be those, not of
the single mend)er, but of the liody, the Clmrcli.

' Coin|);ir(; tlie Eastern exclamation a( I lie Ijiiiigiiig in of I lie Gospels,
"Wisdom: stand up." Supra, jt. l^M.
• St. Aut,ni.stinc.

20'Z THE rillNCirLKS 01' DIVINE SERVICE, [chap. il.

2, Still more, if possible, is public ordinary worship
the necessary complement and filling up of that Chris-
tian priesthood which is supremely exercised in the
Eucharistic act. For this purpose there must be
" prayer set forth as incense and the lifting up of the
hands as sacrifice," the " pure offering" of praise and
self-dedication, by resorting to the highest vouch-
safed Presence after the Eucharistic ; there must be
full and varied reception, by hearing of the myste-
ries of divine knowledge ; lastly, there must be ever-
renewed pleading, in the Church's great secondary
method, and with detailed application to her needs, of
the merits of the One Sacrifice.

Thus, then, Public Worship, as discharged by the
Ordinary Offices of the Church, is far indeed from
being, as some have imagined, an act of merely
natural piety. Neither is it, as others perhaps con-
ceive it, a Christian function indeed, yet an isolated
thing, having no particular relation to the Sacra-
ments, or occupying ground for which no provision
is made, compendiously or otherwise, in those ordi-
nances. The account to be given of Christian Public
AVorship — of the existence of such a thing at all — is,
that it is strictly complementary to the Sacraments in
the sense above explained. Complementary to them,
I say, as fiUing up their idea ; not supplementary, as
if adding anything to it. To refer to the never-fail-
ing archetypal analogy of the Body of Christ : as
"it pleaseth Him in mercy to account Himself in-
complete and maimed without us^" the Church being
the necessary " filling up" or " complement" of Him

^ Hooker, V. Ivi. 10.


" Who filleth all in nil ;" so is the Christian life in
general, but Public Worship in particular, anci in an
especial degree, the "filling up" of the sclieme or
idea of the Sacraments. And of both Sacraments :
not, as a third opinion would make it, of one only,
that of Baptism ; a view which is often more or less
explicitly put forth, even in the improved theological
teaching of the present day. That it is the acting
out of that Sacrament, and may at all times be most
properly used as such, has been fully admitted, and
is to be most earnestly maintained. But its aspect
towards the other Sacrament must be no less clearly
held and contended for. To disallow a close con-
nection as capable of existing between ordinary wor-
ship and the Eucharist, must appear on the slightest
reflection most unsatisfactory. Of the two, indeed,
it stands in more obvious connection with this than
with Baptism ; the work of prayer, praise, and of re-
ceiving knowledge of divine mysteries, being more
strikingly akin to the Eucharistic action of conscious
and active oblation and participation, than to that
more passive and often unconscious process of re-
newal, of which Baptism is the instrument.

The Ordinary Worship of the Chnrch, then, to state
briefly the conclusion from our premises, is an emi-
nent means of discharging the obligations and func-
tions imposed, and of receiving the benefits guaranteed,
in both the Sacraments. But its ])eculiar character
is, that it is an exercise, in a lower way, of that
Christian priesthood which we liave in Christ, which
is given to us in a measure in Baptism, but only
bestowed in its fulness, or exercised in its liiglicst
form, in the celebration of tlic J'Aicharist.

Tiie practical bearing of this view upon the mind


Avith which Ordhiary Worship is to be joined in, is

There is a natural impulse, in the case of any one
who has recently participated in the Eucharist, to
view prayer, praise, and other devotional actions in
connection with that great rite ; as modes of realiz-
ing and carrying out the Eucharistic frame and posi-
tion. The Church, by her Daily Offices, both recog-
nizes and formalizes this rightful conception. Her
ordinary public devotions are designed to be, to those
who are in a position to use them as such, an expan-
sion and carrying on of the Eucharistic functions and
relations. To such, the general act of public worship
is but a further cementing of the eucharistically im-
parted union with Christ and with His Body, the
Church ; — praise and thanksgiving, whether in Psalms
or other forms, are as a tributary stream falling into
the ocean of the Church's Eucharistic praise and
oblation of herself in Christ ; — the hearing of Divine
mysteries of Scripture is an " eating \" as it were,
" of the crumbs that fall " from the holy table ; a
continuation of the act of receiving into the soul Him
who is the Eternal Word, and in Whom are hid
all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge ; — prayer
and pleading are a keeping hold of the horn of the
altar '^. A view, it may surely be said, which dig-

Online LibraryPhilip FreemanThe principles of divine service; an enquiry concerning the true manner of understanding and using the order for morning and evening prayer, and for the administration of the Holy Communion in the English Church (Volume 1) → online text (page 16 of 33)