A BOOKE OF BERTRAM THE Priest, Concerning the Body and Blood of Christ, Written in Latin to Charles the Great, being Emperour, aboue eight hundred yeeres agoe.

Translated and imprinted in the English Tongue. Anno Dnj. 1549.

And now the third time published for the profit of the Reader. 1623.

LONDON Printed by Iohn Dawson. 1623.

TO MY MVCH HONORED FRIEND, SR WALTER PYE, Knight, the KINGS Maties Atturney of the Court of Wards and Liveries.


I Haue nothing of my owne worthy of your loue; but behold a great Worke of ano­ther Mans in this little Volume, I [Page] Dedicate vnto you. It was presen­ted to a great Emperour, Charles the Great, and by him it was ap­proved as heire generall to the anci­ent Fathers: The Author is now after 800. yeeres questioned for his birth-right, and the Polemicall Writers of this Age are not as yet agreed whether he spurious or legi­timate. I hope the Preface follow­ing (his very enemies being Iud­ges) will free him from that impu­tation. His revennue is the doctrine of the blessed Sacrament, ancient and hereditarie: His tenure is in Capite of the Lord Paramount. My suite is an Information may be exhibited against his accusers, and if you see no iust cause whereof they [Page] doe accuse him, let your wonted Iu­stice decree him for the right heire; if otherwise, let him stand or fall according to your Wisedome, and his owne worth, and in doing him this right, you shall oblige me with the rest of your favours faithfully to loue you and yours.


The Preface to the READER.

THE great contention that was betwixt the two Women,1 Kings Chap. 3. who should be the Mo­ther of the liuing childe, was by Salomon easily decided, and the li­ving childe by his wisedome was restored to the right Mother. If Truth & Peace had ioyned hands with Rome and vs, Wisedome her selfe would haue iustified her chil­dren, and our Adversaries would haue resolued this questiō (which without all question is to be resol­ved) that Bertram was the true Au­thor of this fruitfull issue, and his [Page] Doctrine was the Tenet of the an­cient Fathers and the Church his Mother.

But such is the condition of the Church of Rome, that although the true sonne may as easily bee knowne by his voice as Iacob was from Esau; yet the Mother that bred this childe would make him an Esau, and supplant him of his birth-right; the wombe that brought him forth disclaymes his Doctrine, the Church that gaue him sucke out of her two Breasts, the two Testaments, denies him entertainment: and yet behold the Mother of the child, and this Au­thors Mother do sympathize: The Mother of the child although she were a strumpet, yet would she by no meanes suffer her son to be di­vided, nor accept of a dead child, although it was presented to her as her owne. This Authors Mo­ther [Page] (although at that time of his birth she had lost much of her wonted modestie) yet would she not agree, to haue her blessed bo­dy of the Sacrament to be divided and given by the halues, yea, al­though what was offered her, Christ told her it was her body; yet by no meanes would she allow of the dead Letter which killeth, but of the quickning Spirit which giueth life.

Here we see the Church of Rome is auncient, not her errors. We ac­knowledge shee was a Mother Church, and had sometimes Kings for Nursing Fathers, and Queenes for Nursing Mothers: yea, behold this man Bertram, had a King, a great King, Charlemaine the Great, to his Nursing Father, and the Romish Church, some­times the fairest amongst women, gaue him milke out of her sacred [Page] Breasts, as a Nursing Mother.

If there be any remembrance left to Parents for their childrens me­rit. Mother, behold thy Sonne.] If there be any meanes left for chil­dren to relieue their blind and de­cayed Parents. Sonne, behold thy Mother.] Such is our charitie to the bond-woman & her children, that we pittie them, we pray for them, yea, in this Subiect of the reall presence; We heartily wish, that men had not studied so much to be open where the Scripture is silent, and that curious wits had not beene wise aboue sobrietie, to haue searched into the wayes of the Lord, which are past finding out.B: Andrewes against Bel­lar. cap. 1. That which Durandus is re­ported to haue said, doth not dis­like vs; We heare the Word, we per­ceiue the sound, we know not the manner, we beleeue the Presence, we beleeue (I say) the Presence as well [Page] as they, concerning the manner of the Presence, we doe not vnadvisedly define, nay more, we doe not scru­pulously enquire: no more then we doe in Baptisme, how the blood of Christ cleanseth vs, no more then we doe in the Incarnation of Christ, how the divine nature is vnited to the hu­mane, we reckon it amongst the my­steries, and indeed the Eucharist is a mysterie, the remaynders whereof should be consumed with fire, that is, (as the Fathers doe elegantly vnder­stand it) which should be adored by faith, not debated by reason.

But to come to the Author and his Authoritie. Behold, after 800. yeares silence in the graue, there is risen this Champion, to confute this new borne Bratt Transubstan­tiation. All the credit that I haue, or am like to haue in the Church of God, I will ingage it vpon the worth of this little Tract. A worke [Page] not powred forth vpon Adven­tures, but composed with mature deliberation, being required ther­vnto by Charles the Emperour, (neither was it likely, that so great an Eagle as Charlemayne would consult with flyes) in whom it was hard to say whether Learning or Magnificence had the vpperhand: and for these later times, let the iudgement of that famous Bishop and Martyr, Dr Ridley informe vs, of whom I may truly say what Ie­rom did of Nepotian (Pectus suum Bibliothecam fecerat Christi, Ierom ad Paulinum. nec do­leat Ecclesia quod talem amiserit, sed gaudeat quod talem habuerit,) who publiquely honored this Treatise in his Disputations at Oxford, and privatly bequeathed it as a Legacy to Dr Brookes, affirming it to be the first meanes of his conversion, and reducement from the common er­ror of the Roman Church.

[Page]But behold the Authoritie of this Man, and the dexteritie of his subiect, is so great an eye-sore to our Adversaries, that they cannot with any patience reflect vpon him: Here shall you see E­phraim against Manasses, and Ma­nasses against Ephraim, but both against Iuda; here you shall see Iurors and Iudges reconciled, as Pilot and Herod, but both a­gainst Bertram: Will you haue him brought as Paul was before the Councell, & set before them; Behold the Man. The Iudge doth harken, the Councellers be silent, the Cryer biddeth peace, all the people are attentiue to know the cause whereof they would accuse him.

Bellarmine the Foreman of the Inquest, he saith,Bellarm: de script: Eccle­siast. Tom. 7. fol. 121. That Bertram the Priest liued aboue 800. yeares since, and was the first that brought in que­stion [Page] the Reall presence, but sayth he, Paschasius Ratbertus, an Abbot wrote fully and freely of that subiect against him. So then we see him here confessed for the Author, but opposed for his Doctrine, if Bellarmine haue spoken the truth, beare witnes wth him of the truth. Onely let me tell you, I haue read that whole Tract of Paschasius, Printed by them, and there I finde he writes of the Reall presence, he mentioneth two Sacraments, and maintaines the cōmunion in both kinds, but of Bertram in his whole Treatie ne [...] quidem, he makes not so much as mention of him: and this mine eyes haue witnes­sed the Truth against the Fore­man.

In his Trea­tise of 3. Convers. part. 2. cap. 10.The second is F: Parsons:] Bertram (saith he) was wholy of the Ro­mane Religion, and so liued and so died aboue eight hundred yeeres agoe, [Page] though after his death some of Be­rengarius followers, did forge a lit­tle Pamplet in his name against the Reall presence of Christs bodie, as favouring the Berengarian Here­sie: Here then we haue the man confessed but not this Doctrine: I wonder these two Elders li­uing so neere together in Rome, were so farre asunder in opinion; Surely they agree like the two El­ders against Susanna, both ioyned together to accuse the Innocent, & both out of their owne mouths must receiue the like judgement.

The third] About the yeare 806.Lib: consens: omniū atat: de verit: Chi: in Euchar: centen: 9. Delirarecoepit Bertramus (saith Ga­retius). This man acknowledgeth Bertram for the Author, but con­demnes him for an old Dotard.

The fourth:] Langdailius, Langd: lib. 3 Cath: confut: He af­firmeth, That though in some things he transgressed the forme of wordes, yet he holdes correspondencie with [Page] the Catholique Roman Doctrine.

By this mans saying, I see no cause why Bertram deserved a Writ to priviledge his dotage.

De visib. Monarch. Eccles. lib. 7. An. 816. &c.The fifth:] Sanders he saith, That vnder the name of Bertram, there is a Booke extant of the Eucharist, which is sayd to haue bin lately writ­ten, or devised by some of Berenga­rius followers, for that there was no such Doctrine then read, or knowne in that time of his liuing.

In his Trea­tise of the Sacram: cap. 1 fol. 23The sixth:] Reynolds the Priest saith, toward 800 yeeres after Christ, one Bertram, and a little before him one Scotus wrote darkly of the truth of this Sacrament, but whatsoever the private opinion of Bertram was, his publique speeches and writings sounded so ill in the eares of the Ca­tholiques of that age, that Paschasius an Abbot made a very learned Booke in refutation of him. These two hold together like a rope of Sand, [Page] the one saith, Bertram did write but obscurely, the other saith, It was not Bertram, but some obscure Authors; the one saith, there was no such doctrine published in that age, the other saith, that Scotus at that time wrote darkly, as Bertram did on the Sacrament.

The seventh, and eight:Posseu: prefi ad Lect: tom. 1. apparat. Sixt: Sen. prafat. in Bibl.] Oe­colampadius, vnder the name of Ber­tram wrote this booke to Charles the Great, sayth Possevinus and Sixtus Senensis.

The ninth:Greg: lib. 1. de praf. Chi: in Euch. c. 2.] The Worke is spuri­ous, and tainted with the Leven of Berengarius heresie, saith Gregory de Valentia. These also might well agree, if they could reconcile the times and their different opi­nions: for Berengarius liued about six hundred yeares agoe, and Oe­colampadius about a hundred. But if either Berengarius followers, or Oecolampadius himselfe wrote this [Page] Tract of Bertrams, it must needs be that Paschafius Ratbertus, who wrote against this Treatise 800. yeares agoe (as Bellarmine & Rey­nolds doe affirme) did write by the Spirit of Prophecie against Beren­garius followers, & Oecolampadius long before they were borne.

In his Par­liament of Christ. Sacr. in the Pro­logue.The tenth:] Dr Heskius saith, that Bertram in the time of Charles, wrote of the Sacrament suspitiously, and yet in such sort, as no man could be certaine, what hee assuredly meant.

De Ador: Euchar: cap. 19.The eleventh:] Espencaeus saith, That Bertram wrote a Booke to Charles the Emperour, of the Sacra­ment; yet in the iudgement of those that favour his error, he doth intangle both his cause and the minde of the Reader, and although he citeth many of the ancient Fathers, yet one while he seemeth a Catholique, another while of another opinion. These two [Page] are nere to reconciliation, for they both agree vpon the certaintie of the Author, but condemne the vncertaintie of his doctrine.

The twelfth:] Trithenius, Tritenius de Bertr: a man without exception, he sayth, That Bertram the Priest was exceedingly skilfull in the holy Scriptures, he was sharpe in wit, famous in speech, nei­ther was he lesse notable in life then in learning; he wrote many famous and excellent workes vnto Charles the Great, the brother of Lotharius the Emperour; he wrote a praise-wor­thy Booke, (to wit) one Booke con­cerning the Body and Blood of the Lord; he flourished in the dayes of Lotharius the Emperour, about the yeere of Christ 840.

You haue heard the great En­quest, what they can say against this Author. Yet all this while the Trumpet hath given an vncertaine sound. Some (you see) denyes [Page] the man as a singular Novelist, o­thers acknowledge the Author, but affirme this Worke to be sup­positious, others say he held the catholique opinion in the maine, but squared in the forme of spea­king, so that hitherto you see the Iurors are not agreed among themselues, and therefore they cannot giue vp their Verdict a­gainst him: Onely this last witnes doth best resolue all the former doubts, he sheweth, that Bertram was no dotard, he shewes it could not be written by Berengarius, or his followers, for he liued & wrote this Worke to Charles 200. yeares before his time, he shewes he was not spurious but the true Author, and by this his testimonie doth cleerely exclude Oecolampadius for the Author, whose writings were not extant when Tritemius made his Catalogue of this and other Authors.

[Page]Certainely, if these men had beene sworne to the Truth as well as to the Church, the Foreman of the Inquest, and the last, would haue reconciled all the rest.

You haue heard (Gentle Rea­der) the Popes tenants, his sworne servants, our sworne enemies, their best witnesses, Bertrams worst ac­cusers, bound by oath to main­taine the Papacy, divided amongst themselues. Now listen and heare their soveraigne Iudges giue sen­tence, and according to their a­greement, let him stand or fall in your judgment: And first let their Lord chiefe Iustice, Pope Clement the eyght be heard; for, as he can­not erre, so he may not be contra­dicted.Ant. Posseu: Appar: Pag. 230. Tom. 1. Let not Bertram be read (saith he) but with leaue of the A­postolique Sea, and with this conditi­on, that the Reader my confute the heretiques by the errors of that booke. [Page] The next are the Roman Inquisi­tors, Ind: libr. prohibited Anno 1559 & Trident: and the Trent Fathers; these also haue decreed him to be included in the number of Authors prohibited. So then you haue two principall Iudges, a Pope & a late Councell condemning him, and yet this may be thought a strange thing, that without a legall proceeding, without triall of the partie, with­out hearing him, or his Advocate speake for him, to adiudge him? Is it worse with the Church of Rome at this day, then it was with Heathen Rome in the time of Cae­sar? Behold what Festus the Governour answereth Pauls accusers in the like case:Acts 25. vers. 16. It is not the manner of the Romans to deliuer any man to dye before that he which is accused haue the accusers face to face, and to haue licence to answere for himselfe concerning the crime layd against him. If Bertram had beene arraig­ned [Page] and condemned when he was liuing; if his accusers had beene brought face to face before the Emperour, there might haue bin some pretence, some Plea, some Record against him; but after se­ven hundred yeares continuance to giue sentence, and to sit in con­demnation against him as Plain­tife, Witnesse and Iudge that is neither allowable in Church nor State.

Well, what will Bertram doe in this case? Surely, he will appeale (as Paul did to Caesar:) but to whom? Not to one man alone, but to a multitude: not to an ignorant multitude, but to a learned; to a Vniversitie, not on our side (for they would be partiall) but on theirs, the famous Vniversitie of Doway in France, there he was a free denison, bred and borne, and his request is to be tryed by his [Page] Countrie. Since therefore he hath ap­pealed to the learned men of Doway, to Doway let him goe. Now I pray what will these Iudges doe? They heare the Popes sentence, the Councels decree, the Inquisitors severe Iudgement, they weigh so­berly his accusers reasons, they examine diligently the Author himselfe, and finding the former doome too heavie for so slight er­rors committed by him, they re­peale the sentence, and vpon more mature deliberation had of the Author, and his Doctrine, with the consent of Philip the second, and the Duke of Alba to all the Ro­mish Catholiques in his behalfe sen­deth this Greeting.

Ind. Expurg. Belgic: p. 5. edit. Antw. An. 1571. Although we care not greatly for this Booke of Bertrams, whether it be extant or no, yet because it is often printed, and read of many, and the Heretiques know by a Catalogue of [Page] forbidden bookes, that he was a Ca­tholique Priest, and deare vnto Charles the Great, and because we Comment vpon other Writers of the same age, and extenuate their errors oftentimes by a favourable construc­tion of them, by the same reason wee may allow Bertram, and acknowledg him, for there is nothing worthy of reprehension in him, setting aside a little obscuritie in his stile, and his ig­norance in vsing some darke words and sentences, which with marginall notes affixed, may manifest the true sence and meaning of the Author.

Here then is his last definitiue sentence pronounced; they allow the Author, and they allow the worke, so that a right construction be ioyned to his right meaning, and that no misprision may hap­pen to the parties on both sides, the Iudges in the particulars haue delivered their Observations. (Viz.) [...] [Page] di) where he sayes, Lege in Iudia Expurgat: Belgic. edit. An. 1571. Visibiliter. (1.) Invisibiliter. Substantia. (1) Accidens. (folio 1137.) vi­siblie; that is to be read and vnder­stood, say they, Inuisiblie: and where he sayes (infrà) versu 36) the Sub­stance of the creature which was be­fore consecration, remayneth after consecration, by the substance is meant (say they) the Accidents do remaine. Thus our Adversaries haue a free dispensation to reade him with these and the like conditions ex­pressed. It is freely granted, let it be freely accepted. Now if I should question, how it were possible that the substance of bread should be annihilated, and the accidents remaine without a Substance, it were no disparagement for me not to vnderstand it, for I doubt not,Ind. Expurg. Belg: Antw. An. 1571. saith the Index Expurgatorius, but Bertram in those times was ig­norant, how the accidents could ex­actly subsist, without any substance, which this later age hath most sub­tilly [Page] and truely found out; De Transub: lib. 2. cap. 7. Breve et sim­plex & siue vllo incom­modo respon­sum. Neither is it to be maruailed, saith Gregory de Valentia, that some ancients haue both thought and writ lesse conside­ratly concerning Transubstantiati­on, and this is an answere (saith he) briefe and simple, and no way incon­uenient. The reason (as I conceiue) is given by another of their side. The Doctors of these latter times haue attained more vnderstanding in some things then the ancient Fa­thers, Dominic. Bannes. 22. pag. 58. &c. for they are like children (say they) standing on the shoulders of Gyants, who being lifted vp by the talnesse of the Gyants, no marvaile if they see further then they them­selues.

It is true indeede, that this doc­trine in Bertrams time had not that full streame and generall cur­rant as it had in the ancient Fa­thers time before it, as it appeares in his Preface to Charles the Great.

[Page]Neither was this Doctrine broa­ched by a Novelist, for then the Emperour would haue condem­ned it, or at least-wise haue confu­ted him, neither did he alone in this time hold this doctrine, for Scotus about that time wrote a Booke of the same subiect.Alcui: lib. de divinis offic. Beda lib. 2. de Tabernac. cap. 2. Carol. Mag­nas in Epist. ad Alcuinū lib. 2. de offic. pa. 100 Edit. Coloni­ensi. Alcui­nus, Tutor vnto the Emperour, Venerable Bede, & Charles the Em­peror himselfe, did all savour one thing, and speake one thing at the same time with the same Author. Neither did he in this opinion leane to his owne witt, but did pursue and tread in the foot-steps of the holy and ancient Fathers. Such was his answer to the Emperour, and such will his Doctrine mani­fest it selfe vnto the Reader. Nei­ther could this Doctrine be here­ticall,Petigian: in 4. Sentent. d. 10. 9. 1. art. 1. pag. 353. for sayth Petigian for a thou­sand yeares after Christ and more, there was no Heresie in the Church [Page] concerning the Reall presence, as it appeares (saith he) both by sacred Councels, and doctrine of the Fa­thers.

Besides, if this Author had bin single in his opinion, as he was singular, how comes it to passe, that in these times he is so much opposed, and in former ages, hee was not confuted? To question the Writers, to obscure the Au­thors, to mutilate their Bookes, argues a distrust of the truth and goodnesse of the cause, and as Ar­nobius sometimes answered the Gentiles. To intercept our Writings, Arnib: ad­versus Gen­til. lib. 3. and to drowne our Authors, it makes no defence for your Gods, but rather it argues your feare least the Truth should appeare.

Besides, how comes it to passe, that there is such difference of o­pinions concerning this man? how is it that their kingdome is [Page] so much divided against it selfe, that they cannot by any glue of Concord (as Cyprian speaketh) nor bond of vnitie be conioyned? Cyp: lib. 3. Epist. 13. Some hold of Paul, some of Apollos, some allow the Booke, others deny the Author: Is the Worke man and the Worke divided? Is the Author of the Booke commended, & the Booke it selfe condemned? Is this the wisedome and pollicie of the Church, to cry some one thing, some another, like the common Crafts­men for their great Diana of the E­phesians? These things were much to be wondred at, especially by one that wants perhaps the lei­sure, perhaps the knowledge, to search into these doubtfull dis­putes, but that the ingenuous confession of Erasmus will satisfie a further jnquisition. It is plainely found (saith he) that many things in Luthers Bookes are condemned for [Page] hereticall, which in the Bookes of Ber­nard and Austen are read for holy and Orthodox. Agreeable to that saying of Maldonats, Maldon: Comment. in Ioh. 6. expounding a place of Scripture: Although I haue no other Author (saith he) for my exposition, yet I allow it rather then that of Austens and others, (though it be most probable) because this of mine crosseth more the sense of the Calvinists.

Thus then to end with the Church of Rome (with whom I began:Isid. Pleusit. lib. 3. epist. 408.) Shee is like a Woman fallen from her ancient happinesse, and re­taining onely some signes thereof: she hath the Sheaths and Caskets where the Ornaments lay, but the goods themselues she is spoyled off. Hence it is that wee are departed from their Church, as Moses sometimes departed out of Egypt, or as S. Au­sten from the Maniches: Chrysost. in Math. Ho­mil. 49. We haue de­parted from them in body, they first [Page] departed from vs in minde: we from them by place, they from vs by faith: we haue left with them the foundati­ons of the walls; they haue left with vs the foundations of the Scriptures: We are departed from them in the sight of man; they are departed from vs in the iudgement of GOD. And as concerning this Author which I here present vnto you,Ierom: Epist. 126. ad Euagr: I will say, as S. Ierom answered Euagrius, who desiring his opini­on concerning Melchisedec, whe­ther he were the holy Ghost; S. Ierom, when he had shewed him the iudgement of the anci­ent Fathers, of whom some thought Melchisedec a Man, some an Angell: You haue (saith he) what I haue heard, what I haue read touching Melchisedec, to bring forth the witnesses it was my part, let it be yours to iudge of the credit of the wit­nesses.

[Page]Behold (Gentle Reader) the Worke-man and the Worke: I haue cited the opinions of the Moderne Writers, and of the best concerning this Author, it is your part to iudge of the credit of them: it was my part to summon their apparance for the tryall of the partie, it is your part to iudge of the sufficiencie of their proofe, & their good agreement amongst themselues. You haue the Au­thor aboue 800. yeares continu­ance, you haue his doctrine a­boue 1500. yeares: if his proofe make it not good, we will dis­clayme both the Author, and his Doctrine.

If such a light did so shine when the Church was so much dark­ned and obscured with the mists of Ignorāce, pittie it were but this Lampe should receiue a new Light (by reprinting of him) which the [Page] Iniquitie of the times hath al­most extinguished.

Briefely, all that I can say of the Author, is this; That which Vin­centius Lyrinensis spake of Tertul­lian, may very fitly be attributed to him; His words are senses, his senses victories: and as concerning the Worke, and the exquisite per­formance thereof, I will say in two words: Exegit Monumentum: It may stand, (and long may it stand a Monument to after Ages) that he may be justified in his say­ings, and cleare when he is jud­ged.

H. L.

Bertram the Priest, his Preface, concerning the body and blood of the LORD, written to Charles the great, being Emperour.

I Am commanded by you (famous Prince) to declare vnto your Highnesse, What iudgement I am of, concerning the my­sterie of the Bodie and Blood of Christ. Certaine it is, that as this commandement, doth well beseeme your magnificall and Princely estate: so is it a most hard thing to be performed by my poore and small power. For what is [Page] more meete for your Kingly Providence and government, than in respect of your selfe to be vniversally wise, concerning his holy mysteries, who hath vouchsafed you worthy of the Kingly seate: and in respect of your Subiects, not to suffer them to thinke divers things, concerning the bodie and blood of Christ, in which, doubtlesse, consisteth the whole summe of Christian Redemption? For while some of the faith­full affirme, that the mysterie or Sacra­ment of the body and blood of Christ (which is daily celebrated and admini­stred in the Church) is done vnder no fi­gure, and vnder no cover at all, but per­f [...]med vnder the naked manifestation & shew of the truth it selfe: and againe, while other some testifie, that these things are conteined vnder the figure of the mystery, and that it is one thing which appeareth to our bodily senses, and another thing that our faith looketh vpon, it plainly appeareth that there is no small diversitie and diffe­rence amongst them. And whereas the Apostle writeth vnto the faithfull people, That all of them should savour one thing, 1 Cor. 1.10. and speake one thing, and that [Page] no schisme should appeare amongst them, we must needs say, that they are by no small schisme divided, and rent asun­der, who not thinking the selfe same things doe speake diversly of the mysterie of the bodie and blood of Christ. Wherefore your Kingly Maiestie and Highnesse being provoked no doubt with the zeale of Reli­gion (though perhaps not quietly and in­differently considering of these things) and desiring also, that all men should (accor­ding to the Apostles Commandement) thinke and speake one thing doth dili­gently search for the mysterie and secret of truth, that so you may call backe such therevnto, as haue wandred and strayed. Wherevpon also it commeth to passe, that you disdaine not, to demand and aske the truth of this matter, even of very poore and base men, perswading your selfe, that the mysterie of so great a secret, cannot be knowne, but by inspiration and revelation from God, who having no respect of per­sons, sheweth forth the light of his truth, by whomsoever he himselfe hath chosen to so great a matter. Now, as it is very plea­sant for me poore man, to obey your Com­mandement: [Page] so I confesse it is a very hard matter for me, to dispute and reason of a matter so farre estranged from mans vn­derstanding and senses, and into which a man cannot pearse or enter, but by the in­struction and teaching of the holy Spirit. Wherefore, I being at this present subiect, to your Highnesse commandement, and yet trusting and cleaving to the ayde and as­sistance of him of whom we will speake, will assay by what words I can to open my iudgement concerning this matter, not leaning in the treatie thereof to mine owne wit, but pursuing and treading in the foot­steps of the holy and auncient Fathers.

HERE BEGIN­neth the Booke of Bertram the Priest, touching the body and blood of the Lord: which he wrote to Charles the Great, being Em­perour.

YOur Highnesse Excellen­cy demandeth,1 Two que­stions. whether that the body and blood of Christ, which in the Church is receiued by the mouth of the faithfull, bee done in a mystery, or in truth and verity? that is to say, whether it containe some secret thing, which is euident to the eyes of faith onely: or whether, with­out the vaile or couerture of any my­stery, the bodily sight, doe outward­ly [Page 2] behold that, which the sight of the minde doth inwardly looke vpon, so that whatsoeuer is done appeareth ma­nifestly or no? And this is the first question. The other is whether it be that very body, that was borne of the Virgin Mary, that suffered, that died, that was buried, and that rising againe, & ascēding vp into heauen, sitteth now on the right hand of the Father or no?

Now let vs looke into the first of these two questions: and lest wee be letted with ambiguity and doubtful­nesse, let vs define what a figure is, and what the truth is, that so beholding and perceiuing some certainty, wee may know, whither wee ought to de­ferre the course of our reasoning.

A figure is a certaine shadow, by certaine vailes & couertures as it were, that is to say, darkely declaring the thing, which it intendeth to manifest: as for example, when wee minde to speake of Gods Word, we call it bread: so in the Lords Prayer wee desire to haue daily bread, giuen vs. Also when Christ in the Gospell speaketh,Mat. 6.11 saying: [Page 3] I am the living bread which came downe from heaven. Likewise,Ioh. 6.51. when hee cal­leth himselfe a Vine, and his Disciples branches, saying, I am the true Vine, Ioh. 15.1.5 and yee are the branches. For all these sayings, seeme to speake one thing, and yet meane another thing.

As for that which wee call verity, or truth, it is the declaration of a mani­fest and plaine matter, which is not couered with any shew of shadowes, but insinuated and delivered, with pure and open (or to speak more plain­ly) with naturall significations: as when it is said, That Christ being borne of a Virgin, suffered death, was crucified, Mat. 1.25 1 Pet. 3.18 1 Cor. 2.2 Ioh. 19.40 &c. dead and buried. Heere verily is no­thing shadowed, with figures ouer­couering the same, but the truth of the things declared, by the significati­ons of naturall wordes or speeches: neither may we heere vnderstand any other thing, than that which is spo­ken and expressed. But it is not so in the former sentences, for neither is Christ the bread, substantiallly, nei­ther is Christ a Vine substantially, nei­ther [Page 4] are the Apostles branches sub­stantially: wherefore in these latter speeches there is a figure, and in those former, the truth (that is to say, a na­ked and open signification) is decla­red, by narration or plaine speech. Now let vs returne to those things (that is, to the body and blood of Christ) for whose these points haue been pro­pounded and vttered. Truly if that great mystery be celebrated and done vnder no mystery at all, then it is not rightly called a mystery, because that cannot be called a mystery, or secret, wherein there is no hidden thing, and wherein there is no matter remooued from our bodily senses, and wherein there is nothing covered, with some vaile or couerture. But that bread, which by the Ministery of the Priest, is now become the body of Christ, doth shew one thing outwardly to mans senses, and soundeth another thing inwardly to the mindes of the faithfull: Outwardly indeed the form of bread, which it had before, is set out, the colour thereof is shewed, and [Page 5] the savour thereof received and tasted. But inwardly a thing farre differing, yea and much more precious, and excellently is shewed and set forth, and I say, it is much more precious and excellent, because it is heauenly, and because it is diuine: I meaning hereby that Christs body is manife­sted, which is either seen, or receiued, or eaten, not with the senses & facul­ties, or power of the flesh, but with the eye and sight of a faithfull or be­leeving minde. The wine also which by the Priest through consecration, is become the Sacrament of Christs blood, setteth forth one thing out­wardly, and containeth an other thing inwardly. For what other thing is superficially and outwardly locked vp, then the substance of wine? Taste it, and it savoureth and smacketh wine: smell it, and it smelleth wine: looke vpon it, and thou mayst behold the colour of wine. But if a man do consider it inwardly, then it being, not the liquor of wine, but the liquor of Christ blood, so savoreth to the [Page 6] beleevers minds while it is tasted, and is so acknowledged while it is beheld, and is so proved to be, whilest it is smelled.

It is manifest that these things are so, seeing no man can deny them to be true, because the Bread and the Wine is figuratiuely Christs body & blood. For outwardly and according to that which is seene, neither is any kind or shew of flesh knowne to be in that Bread, nor any drop of blood shewed forth in the Wine, and yet for all that, after the mysticall consecration, the Bread is no more called Bread, nor the Wine Wine, but both of them to­gether are called the body and blood of Christ. For if (according to some mens mindes) nothing were in this matter taken figuratiuely, but the whole were considered and looked vpon in veritie or truth, then should faith worke nothing at all therein; be­cause that no spirituall thing should be performed, but looke whatsoever the thing it selfe were, even that whol­ly should be taken, according to the [Page 7] body, and a mans fleshly vnderstan­ding.Heb. 11.1. And seeing that faith (as the A­postle saith) is the argument and evi­dence of such things as appeare not, that is to say, not of such substances as are seene, but of such as are not seene, we shall then in this action receiue no­thing according to faith, because that we discerne and iudge of all that is in it, according to our bodily senses. And what I pray you can be more ab­surd then to take Bread to be flesh, and to affirme, that Wine is blood? And a mystery that cannot be, in which there is no secret or hidden thing con­teined. And how can it be said, to be Christs body and blood, in which it is not known, that there is any change made?

Now every alteration and change,He proueth by three sorts of change, that there is no change made in the elements of the Supper. is either made from that thing which actually it is not, into that which actu­ally it is: or els when it is changed from that which it is, into that, which it is not: or from that which it is, to wit, in respect of quality, to that which it is, in respect of qualitie, though [Page 8] changed perhaps into another quali­tie. But in this Sacrament, if onely the truth be considered in simplicitie and plainenesse, and not another thing be­leeved, than that which is beheld, no change can be knowne to be made. For neyther hath it passed from that which it was not,The first kinde of change. into somewhat that is, as such a passage and change is ma­ny times made in growing things: for whereas they were not before, they to the end they might be passed, from not being, to that which is to be, or to be­ing. But this passage, or change falleth not out here, because that the Bread and Wine, were, before they passed into the Sacrament of the body and blood of Christ.The second kinde of change. Neither yet can there be here, that passage or change, which is made from that which it is, to that which it is not, which change falleth out in things that through defect suf­fer a decay or fall. For whatsoever doth decay, was first and had it being, because that thing can not suffer a de­cay or destruction, which never was. And yet, neither can this passage or [Page 9] change be knowne to be made in this matter, because that according to truth, that very kinde or shape of crea­ture which is before, is knowne still to remaine. Moreover,The third kinde of change. that change which is made, from that which is, to that which is, which change appea­reth specially in things, that suffer di­versitie and varietie of qualities, as for example, when that which was blacke is turned into white, neither can that change I say be knowne to be made here: for nothing can be here found to be changed, either in touching, or in tast, or in colour, or in favour. Therefore if nothing be changed herein, it is not then any other thing than what it was before. But it is ano­ther thing, for the Bread is become Christs body, and the wine his blood, for so he himselfe saith: Take ye, Math. 26.26. &c. and eate ye, This is my body: and speaking of the Cup, he sayth likewise: This is the blood of the new Testament, which shall be shed for you.

Therefore they, that in this questi­on, will take nothing figuratiuely, but [Page 10] will haue the whole to consist in the simplicitie, and plainenesse of truth, must be demanded, how, and in what respect this change is made, so that now they be no more that, which they were before, to wit, Bread and Wine, but are the body & blood of Christ? For according to the kind and shew of the creature, and the outward forme of visible things, both of these, that is, the Bread & the Wine, haue nothing at all changed in them: and if they suf­fer no change at all, then are they no other thing, but that which they were before.

Your Highnesse (most noble Prince) perceiveth, whether the vnderstāding and mind of those men that thinke o­therwise, proceedeth: for they denie that which men suppose them to af­firme, and they are proved to destroy that which they beleeue. For they doe faithfully confesse it, to be the body and blood of Christ, and in so doing doubtlesse, they doe now protest, that the Bread and the Wine be nor the same that they were before, and that if [Page 11] they be some other thing than they were before, that then they haue ad­mitted some alteration and change.

Seeing then that this cannot be de­nied, let them tell vs, how, & in what respect they are changed, for a man shall perceiue nothing, to be bodily & substantially changed in them. There­fore they must of necessitie confesse, either that they are changed, other­wise than bodily and substantially,He draweth his reason from a dou­ble absurdi­tie. and so by that means that they are not that which in truth they seeme to be, but some other thing, which according to his owne being, is not seene or percei­ved to be: or els, if they will not con­fesse this, they must needs denie it, to be the bodie and blood of Christ, which thing is very wicked, not one­ly for a man to speake, but also to thinke.

But for as much as they doe con­fesse, both the body and blood of Christ to be there: and that this can­not be, but by making a change into a better thing, and that this change is made not corporally or bodily, but [Page 12] spiritually: it must needs be, that they doe affirme and say, that this change is made figuratiuely, because that vn­der the vayle or coverture of bodily Bread, and bodily Wine, there is the spirituall body of Christ, and his spi­rituall blood: not that they are the exi­stences and beings, of two severall and divers things, that differ betweene themselues, that is to say, of the bodie and of the spirit: but because, that the kinde or shew of Bread and Wine, is in one respect, one and the selfe same thing, that is, Bread and Wine, and in another respect, it is the body and blood of Christ. For in respect, that both of them are bodily and substan­tially touched, they are the kindes and shewes of a bodily creature, but in re­spect of power, because they are spiri­tually done, they are the mysteries of the body and blood of Christ.An argu­ment taken, from com­paring Bap­tisme, & the Lords Sup­per toge­ther.

Let vs consider the fountaine of ho­ly Baptisme, which is not without cause called the fountaine or welspring of life, because it reformeth them that be partakers of it, to newnesse of a bet­ter [Page 13] life, and maketh them,Rom. 6.4. to liue to righteousnesse,Ephes. 2.1. which before were dead in trespasses and sinne. Hath it this power and force, because, or in respect that, the element of water, appeareth, or is seene to be? and yet notwithstan­ding, vnlesse it had in it a vertue and power to sanctifie, it were not able to wash away, the spots and filthinesse of sinne: and vnlesse it contained the vi­gor and strength of life, it could at no hand giue life to them that are dead, dead I meane, not in the flesh or body, but in the soule or spirit. And yet not­withstanding all this, if in that foun­taine, we haue respect to that thing onely, which our bodily sense looketh vpon and comprehendeth, we can see nothing, but a moyst and thinne ele­ment, to wit, Water, subiect to corrup­tion, and that such a one, as that of and in it selfe, hath no other power in it, but to wash our bodies. But after that the power of the holy Ghost, by the consecratiō of the Priest is come ther­to, it is then become effectuall and powerfull, to wash, not our bodies [Page 14] onely, but our soules, and made able also, by & through a spirituall power, to remoue spirituall filthinesses. Be­hold we see, that there are in one and the selfe same element two things, re­sisting, and as it were, striving one of them against the other, that is to say, we see a corruptible thing to giue in­corruption, and a thing that hath not life, to yeeld and giue life also. Where­fore wee know that in this fountaine & welspring, that is one thing, which the bodily senses may touch and per­ceiue, and therefore it is changeable and corruptible: and againe, that there is another thing in it, which onely faith can beholde, and that therefore it cannot be corrupted, nor come in­to danger of decay. Wherfore if a man would demand, What that is, which outwardly washeth the body, I an­swere, that it is nothing but the ele­ment: but if a man would consider that which inwardly purgeth, I say, that it is a liuely vertue, yea, a vertue, that is able to sanctifie, yea, a vertue and power that giueth immortalitie. [Page 15] Therefore the water in Baptisme, is in it owne propertie, a corruptible hu­mor or liquor, but in mystery and spi­rituall meaning, a wholesome and healthfull power.

And even so verily the body and blood of Christ being outwardly con­sidered, is a creature, subiect to change and corruption: and yet if a man con­sider, the vertue and power of the my­sterie, it is life in deed, giving immor­talitie to such as be partakers thereof. Therefore the things, that are seene, and the things that are beleeved, are not all one. For in respect that they are seene, they feede the corruptible bodie, they themselues being corrup­tible: but in respect that they are be­leeved, they feed our immortall soules which shall liue for ever, they them­selues being also immortall.

The Apostle writing to the Corin­thians, sayth: Know ye not, 1 Cor. 10.1.2. &c. that all our Fathers were vnder the cloud, and all passed through the Sea, and were all Bap­tised vnto Moses in the Cloud, and in the Sea, and did all eate the same spirituall [Page 16] meat, and did all drink the same spirituall drink? for they drunke of the spirituall Rocke that followed them: and that rocke was Christ. Hence we perceiue, that the Sea and the Cloud both, did shewe forth the kinde and figure of Baptis­me, and that the Fathers of the former Testament, were Baptised in them, that is, in the Cloud, and in the Sea. Could the Sea, as it was seene and thought to be an element, haue in it the power and force of Baptisme? or could the Cloud, as it shewed forth, the grosenes of some very thicke ayre, sanctifie the people? No verily: And yet we dare not, sith the Apostle spake in Christs name, say, that he spake not truely when he said, That our Fathers, were baptised in the Cloud and in the sea. And although that Baptisme, did shew forth and set out, the forme of Christs Baptisme, which at this day is vsed & ministred in the Church, yet no wise man dare deny (vnlesse like a mad man he will presume, to gainesay the Apo­stles words) but that it was Baptisme, and that our Fathers were therein and [Page 17] thereby Baptised. Wherefore neither the Sea nor the Cloud, in respect that they were bodily substances, did shew forth or giue out the cleannesse of san­ctification, but in respect that they did invisibly conteine, the sanctification of the holy Ghost. For there was in them, that is, in the Sea, and in the Cloud, both a visible forme, which appeared to the bodily senses, and that not in an image or shew, but in veritie or truth? & inwardly there shined forth in them a spirituall power, which appeared not to the eyes of flesh, but to the sight & light of the minde or soule.

In like sort, the Manna that was gi­ven to the people from heaven, and the water also that flowed out of the Rocke, were corporall and bodily sub­stances, and did corporally both feede the people, and giue them drinke also, and yet the Apostle, calleth that Man­na spirituall meat, and that Water spi­rituall drinke. And why doth he that? Because there was in these bodily sub­stances, a spirituall power of the word, which did feede and giue drinke, ra­ther [Page 18] to the minds, then to the bodies of the beleevers. And though that meate and that drinke, did but shewe forth the mysterie of that bodie and blood of Christ, which was to come (which mysterie the Church doth at this day celebrate and administer) yet the holy Apostle S. Paul affirmeth, that our Fathers did eate the same spirituall meate, 1 Cor. 10.3.4. and did drinke the same spirituall drinke.

A man will perhaps aske, What he meaneth by this word (the same) I an­swere, that he meaneth the very selfe same thing, which the beleeving peo­ple doe at this day, eate and drinke in the Church of Christ. For wee may not vnderstand divers things thereby, because it is one and the selfe same Christ, who with his owne flesh fed in the Wildernesse, the people that was Baptised in the Cloud, and in the sea, and then made them to drinke of his blood, and that doth now in his Church, feede the beleeving people with the Bread of his body, and make them to drinke of the water of his [Page 19] blood. Which thing the Apostle min­ding to declare, after that he had said, That our Fathers did eate the same spiri­tuall meate, 1 Cor. 10.4. and did drinke the same spi­rituall drinke, he presently added, For they dranke of the spirituall Rocke that followed them, and that Rocke was Christ. And this he doth, that so wee might vnderstand that Christ, was in the spirituall Rocke in the Wildernes, and gaue vnto the people there, the water of his blood: which Christ af­terwards offred, even to the people of our age, that bodie that he tooke of the Virgin, and was hanged vpon the Crosse, for the salvation of the belee­vers: from which bodie also he pow­red forth great abundanc of his blood, by which we should not onely be re­deemed, but also made drinke there­of.

This verily is a wonderfull matter, seeing that Christ being incompre­hensible & inestimable, had not as yet takē vnto him mans nature, nor tasted death, for the salvation of the world, nor had redeemed vs by his blood, & [Page 20] yet that our Fathers, did in the Wil­dernesse, by spirituall meate, and invi­sible drinke, eate his body, and drinke his blood, as the Apostle is a witnesse, saying; That our Fathers did eate the same spirituall meate, and did drinke the same spirituall drinke. Wee must not here seeke out our own reason or way, by which this might bee performed, but faith must be vsed, if wee will know, what was done. For he, that now in the Church, doth by his All­mightie power, spiritually turne, the Bread into the flesh of his bodie, and the wine into the Water, as it were, of his owne blood, he then also invisibly made, the Manna that was given from heaven to become his owne bodie, and caused the water springing or flowing out of the Rocke, to become his owne blood.Psal. 78.25. Which thing, when David did well perceiue, he by the holy Ghost, protested and plainely affirmed, say­ing; Man did eate the bread of Angels. For it were a fond thing to thinke, that that bodily Manna, which was given to the Fathers, should feede the hea­venly [Page 21] armies and multitudes of An­gels: or that they doe eate any such meate, who are fed and fatted, as it were, with the dainties of Gods word, here on earth, I mean men. Verily the Psalmist, or rather the holy Ghost in the Psalmist sheweth, either what our fathers received in that heavenly Man­na: or els what the faithfull people should beleeue to be, in the mysterie of Christs bodie. In both of them certainely Christ is signified and set forth: which Christ both feedeth the soules of the beleevers, and is the food and meate of Angels: and yet neither of them are done in corporall taste, or bodily feeding, but by the power of the spirituall word.

And wee know, because the Evan­gelist hath declared the same, that the Lord Iesus Christ, before he suffered, Tooke Bread, and gaue thankes, Mat. 26.26. &c. 1 Cor. 11.23. &c. and gaue it to his Disciples, saying: This is my bodie which is given for you, doe this in re­membrance of me. Likewise, he tooke the Cup, after he had supped, saying: This Cup is the New Testament in my blood, [Page 22] which shall be shed for you. We see that Christ had not as yet suffered, and yet for all that he wrought or made, the mysterie of his body and blood: for wee thinke truely that any faithfull man doubteth whether that Bread be­came Christs bodie, which he gaue vnto his Disciples, and said; This is my bodie which is given for you: or whether the cup conteineth Christes blood, of which cup our Saviour Christ him­selfe saide: This cup is the New Testa­ment in my blood, which shall be shed for you. Therefore as he could, even a lit­tle before he suffered, turne the sub­stance of the Bread, and the creature of the Wine, into his owne body, which should suffer, and into his own blood, which afterwardes should be shed: so likewise was he able in the Wildernesse, to turne the Manna, and the water that issued out of the Rocke, into his owne flesh and blood, although that a long time after, both his flesh was to be hāged on the crosse for our sakes, and his blood to be shed for the washing away of our sinnes.

[Page 23]Here also wee ought to consider, how we must vnderstand that which he himselfe saith:Ioh 6.53. Except yee eate the flesh of the Sonne of man and drinke his blood, yee shall not haue life in you. For hee doth not say or meane, that his flesh, which afterwards hanged on the Crosse, should bee cut in peeces and parts, and so be eaten by his Disciples, neither yet that his blood which hee should shed for the redemption of the world, should bee given vnto his Disciples for drinke, because it should be a most wicked and horrible thing, for his Disciples either to drinke his blood, or to eate his flesh, as the vnbe­leevers did at that time vnderstand him. Therefore in the words follow­ing, he said to his Disciples, who did not vnbeleevingly, but in some mea­sure of faith receiue Christs wordes, although they could not as then pierce and perceiue how those wordes were to bee vnderstood: to them, I say, he said: Doth this offend you? Ioh. 6.61.62. What then if yee should see the Sonne of man ascend vp where he was before? As though he [Page 24] should say: Thinke not I pray you, that you must either bodily eate my flesh, or bodily drinke my blood, or that my body must bee divided into parts to be eaten, or my blood distri­buted to be drunke, seeing that after my resurrection, yee shall see mee to goe vp into heaven, with the fulnesse of my whole body and blood: and then shall ye vnderstand, that my very flesh shall not be eaten of the beleevers, as the infidels suppose, but that the bread and the wine, being turned into the substance of my body and of my blood, the substance thereof shall bee in a mystery received by the beleevers. And presently he addeth.Ioh. 6.63. The spirit is it (saith hee) which quickeneth, the flesh profiteth nothing. He saith that the flesh profiteth nothing at all, after such a forme and manner as the vnbeleevers vnderstood it, otherwise it giveth life, as the faithfull do in a mystery receiue it. And why this is done, he himselfe doth manifestly declare, when hee saith: It is the spirit that quickeneth. Wherefore there is in this mysterie of [Page 25] the body and blood of Christ, a spi­rituall opperation and working, that giveth life; without the working whereof, these mysteries profit no­thing at all, because they may indeed feed the bodie, but they cannot feed the soule.

Now then heere ariseth a question, which while many propound, they say and affirme, that these things are done, not in a figure or mystery, but in verity and truth. Which while they affirme, they are found to goe a­gainst, and to gaine-say the writings of the holy Fathers. Saint Augustine, Aug. de doct Christ. lib. 3. one of the chiefe Doctors of the Church, in his third booke of Chri­stian doctrine, writeth thus.Ioh. 6.53. Except ye eate (saith our Saviour) the flesh of the Sonne of man, and drinke his blood, yee shall not haue life in you. Hee seemeth to command a wicked thing, and an vngodly act. Wherefore it is a figuratiue speech commanding vs to communicate in the Lords passion, and sweetly and profitably to lay vp this in our memories, that his flesh was crucified and wounded for our [Page 26] sakes. Here we perceiue, that this Do­ctor saith and affirmeth, that the my­steries of the bodie & blood of Christ, are vnder a figure celebrated and re­ceived of the faithfull: for hee saith plainely, that it belongeth not to reli­gion, but is rather a wicked thing, car­nally to eate Christs body, or to drink his blood: into which fault they fell, who, not spiritually but fleshly vnder­standing the Lords words in the Gos­pell,Ioh. 6.66. Departed or went backe from him, and went or walked no more with him. The same Doctor writing in a certaine Epistle to Boniface the Bishop,Aug. ad Bo­nifa. epist. amongst other things saith thus. Truly we vse oftentimes to speak thus, that when Easter draweth nigh, that to morrow, or the next day after shall be the Lords pas­sion, whereas hee suffered so many yeares before, and verily that passion or suffering was done but once for all. Also on the Lords day, that wee call Easter day, wee vsually say, this day the Lord rose againe, whereas indeed and truth, so many yeares are since he rose againe, already past. And why is no man so fond and foolish, as to re­proue [Page 27] vs speaking thus, as though we had lyed, but onely because wee name those dayes, according to the similitude and likenesse of these dayes, in which these things were done? Insomuch that it is called the very same day, which yet is not in deed the very same, but in the revolu­tion and turning about of the time is like it: and so also, that is said to be done vp­on that day, by reason of the celebration and administration of the Sacrament, which is not done vpon that day, but was performed long agoe. Was not Christ once offered about that time? And yet not­withstanding, hee is not onely every feast of Easter, but even every day offered vn­to the faithfull people, neither is hee to be deemed a lyar who being asked of ano­ther man, answereth that hee is offered. For if the Sacraments had not a certaine similitude and likenesse of those things, of which they are Sacraments, they could not at all be Sacraments: and in respect of this very likenesse that they haue, they take the very names of the things them­selues. Wherefore, even as the Sacrament of Christs body is after a certaine manner [Page 28] Christs body it selfe, and the Sacrament of Christs blood, is after a certaine man­ner Christs blood, so the Sacrament of faith is faith.

Hence we perceiue that Saint Au­gustine saith, that the Sacrament is one thing, and the things whereof they are Sacraments, is another thing. Now the body, in which Christ suffered, and the blood that came out of his side, are the things of the Sacrament: but the mysteries by which these things are represented, hee saith, they are the Sacraments of the body and blood of Christ, which are celebrated and administred, in remembrance of the Lords passion and suffering, and that not onely every yeare once, at or about the feast of Easter, but every day in the yeare. And although the Lord had but one bodie, in which hee suf­fered once for all, and but one blood, which was shed for the salva­tion of the world, yet the Sacraments or elements signifying these things, haue taken the names of the very things themselues, insomuch that they [Page 29] are called the body and blood of Christ, being so called indeed for the similitude and likenesse of the things which they represent and shew forth, even as the feast of Easter, which is observed every yeare, is called the Passeover, and the resurrection of the Lord, whereas we know that the Lord did but once suffer, and but once rise againe, about that time. And albeit, that these very dayes, cannot now be revoked or called backe, be­cause they are already past, yet by their name and title are such dayes called, as in which, the memorie of the Lords suffering and resurrection is rehearsed and celebrated: and this is therefore done, because they haue a certaine re­semblance and likenesse of these very dayes, in which our Saviour once suf­fered, and once rose againe: Where­upon we say, this day, or to morrow, or the next day, is the Lords passion, or resurrection, when as these dayes, in which these things were done, were passed many yeares agoe. So we may say, that the Lord is offered, when the [Page 30] Sacraments of his suffering are cele­brated and administred, whereas in­deed hee was but once for all offered vp in himselfe, for the salvation of the world, as the Apostle saith: Christ hath suffered for vs, 1 Pet. 2.21. leaving vs an ex­ample, that we should follow his footsteps. For hee saith not, that hee every day offered himselfe, because he did it but once, but this hee saith, that hee hath left vs an example, which is daily pre­sented and shewed forth to the belee­vers, in the mystery of the Lords bo­die and blood, to the end that every one that shall come or repaire thereto, may know that hee ought to be made a companion with him in his suffe­rings, the image and liuely picture whereof, hee doth, as it were tarry and wait for, to be exhibited vnto him, in the holy mysteries, according to the saying of the Wiseman in the Pro­verbes:Pro. 23.1. Commest thou to a mighty mans table, marke diligently what things are set before thee, knowing that thou thy selfe must another time prepare such like things. To come to a mightie [Page 31] mans table, is to bee partaker of the Lords offering, or as wee say, of the Lords Supper: and the marking or cōsidering of such things as are set be­fore vs is the sound vnderstanding or knowledge of the bodie and blood of Christ: whereof whosoever parta­keth, hee must know and remember thus much, that hee ought to prepare such precious things, that so hee may become a follower of Christ in dying with him, the remembrance of whose death, he professeth and acknowledg­eth, not only in beleeving, but also in tasting.

Againe, Saint Paul writing to the Hebrewes, saith thus:Heb. 7.26.27. Verily such an high Priest it became vs to haue, as is ho­ly, harmlesse, vndefiled, separated from sinners, and become higher then the hea­vens: who needed not daily (as those high Priests) to offer vp sacrifice, first for his one sinnes, and then for the peoples: for the Lord Iesus Christ did this once for all, when hee offered vp himselfe. That which he did once, he doth now day­ly exercise and vse. For he once offe­red [Page 32] vp himselfe for the sinnes of the people: and this very selfe same obla­tion or offering, is every day celebra­ted among the faithfull, but yet in a mystery, that so that very thing which the Lord Iesus Christ offring vp him­selfe once for all, hath fulfilled, may by the celebration & administration of the mysteries, bee daily performed and done, for the remembrance of his death and passion. Neither yet is it falsly said, that the Lord in those my­steries is either offered, or suffereth, because they haue a certaine simili­tude or likenesse of his death and pas­sion, whereof indeed, they are true, and liuely representations. Where­upon the very mysteries themselues are called the Lords bodie, and the Lords blood, because they haue the name of that, or those things whereof they be the Sacrament.

Isodorus, O­riginum siue Etymologia­rū. lib. 6. cap. de officijs. co­lū 143. linea 28. Isodorus in his bookes which hee wrote of the true signification of words, saith thus: It is called a sacrifice, as though a man would say, a holy fact or deed, because through mysticall prayer, it [Page 33] is consecrated and appointed, to, or for the remembrance of the Lords suffering. Whereupon, by his authority and com­mādement, we cal it the body and blood of Christ because that though it bee made of the fruits of the earth, it is yet notwith­standing sanctified, and so become a Sacra­ment, Gods spirit working invisibly there­in: the Sacraament of the bred and cup, the Grecians doe call Eucharistia: that is, if it bee interpreted, good grace, or thankesgiving. And what is better then the body and blood of Christ? Now the bread and wine, are therefore compared and resembled to the Lords body and boold, because that as the substance of this visible bread and wine doth nourish, and make cheerfull the outward man: So the Word of God, (which is the living or liue­ly bread) being once rightly partaked of, doth recreate and refresh the mindes of the faithfull. And this Catholike Do­ctor teacheth vs, that that same holy mystery of the Lords passion and suf­fering, must on our behalfes, or in re­spect of vs, bee done for the remem­brance of the Lords passion. And in [Page 34] so saying, he declareth that the Lords passion or suffering, was onely once done, but that the remembrance there­of is continually represented vnto vs, in those same holy rites and solemni­ties. Whereupon, both the bread that is offered, though it be taken, from a­mongst the fruits of the earth, is yet notwithstanding, while it is sanctified, changed into Christs body: as also the wine, though it flow out of the Vine, is yet notwithstanding, through the sanctification of the divine myste­ry, become the blood of Christ, not visibly indeed, but (as the aforesaid Doctor affirmeth) the holy Ghost in­visibly working therein. Whereupon also they are called, both the body and blood of Christ, because they are re­ceived, not as they are outwardly seen or beheld, but as they are spiritually made, or become vnto vs, Gods spirit working inwardly in vs. And because, that through the invisible power and grace, they are become a farre other matter vnto vs than visibly they seeme to bee, hee therefore maketh a diffe­rence, [Page 35] while hee saith, that the bread and the wine, are therefore compared and resembled to the Lords body and blood, be­cause that as the substance of the visible bread and wine, doth nourish and make chearfull the outward man: so the Word of God (which is the living or liuely bread) being once rightly partaked of, doth recreate and refresh the mindes of the faithfull. Now in speaking thus, hee most plainely confesseth, that whatso­ver outward thing is received in the Sacrament of the Lords body and blood, all that is fitted and applyed to the refreshing of the bodie. But the Word of God, which is the invisible bread, being invisibly in the same Sa­crament, doth through the partaking thereof, by quickening the mindes of the faithfull invisibly feed them.

The same Doctor also saith:Isidorus, loco supra citato. It is a Sacrament, when it is celebrated or ad­minstred: as when a thing is so done, that the selfe same thing may be vnderstood or perceived to signifie somwhat, which thing must also bee holyly received and taken. In saying these things, hee declareth [Page 36] that every Sacrament, doth, in holy things, containe some secret or myste­rie: and that it is one thing which ap­peareth visibly, and that it is another thing which must bee taken or recei­ved invisibly: And what Sacraments are to be celebrated amongst the faith­full, hee afterwards sheweth, saying: Now these are the Sacraments: Bap­tisme, and Chrisme: and the Lords bo­die and blood: which are therefore called Sacraments, because vnder the vaile and coverture of bodily things, Gods divine power or vertue, doth secretly worke the efficacy or power of the said Sacraments, Whence also it commeth to passe, that they are called Sacraments, of certaine secret powers, or holy solemnities in them. And afterwards he saith: In Greeke it it is called a mystery, because it hath in it a secret and hidden disposition. What are we taught by these words, but that the Lords body and blood are therefore said to be mysteries, because they haue a secret and hidden disposition, that is to say, are one thing in respect of that which they outwardly shew forth: [Page 37] and another thing in respect of that, which invisibly they worke within? And herevpon also they are called sa­craments, because that vnder the vaile or coverture of bodily things, Gods heavenly power and vertue doth se­cretly, but yet faithfully and effectu­ally, dispense, procure and worke, the salvation, of all such as worthily and rightly receiue them.

By all the things,The sum of this for­mer Part. that hitherto haue beene spoken, wee haue declared, that the bodie and blood of Christ, which in the Church are received, by the mouth of the beleevers, are figures, ac­cording to their outward shew and vi­sible forme, but that according to an invisible substance, that is, according to the power of the divine word, they are verily and in deed, the body and blood of Christ. Wherevpon we con­clude, that as they are visible creatures they feed the body, but that yet, throw the power of a more mightie and ex­cellent substance, they doe both feed and sanctifie the minds of all faithfull people.

[Page 38]And now let vs looke into the se­cond question, & the purpose or drift thereof, and let vs see, whether that very body, that was borne of the Vir­gin Mary, that suffered, that was dead and buried, and that sitteth at the right hand of the Father, be the same which through the mystery of the Sacramēts is daily received in the Church, by the mouths of the faithfull? Let vs enquire and see what S. Ambrose iudgeth con­cerning this matter.Ambro. sa­cra. lib. 1. In his Booke of Sacraments, he speaketh thus; Truely it is a marveilous thing, that God did for the Fathers raine Manna from heaven, Psal. 78.25. and that they were daily fed with food from heaven: wherevpon it is said, Man did eate the bread of Angels. And yet for all that, all they which did eate that bread in the Wildernesse, Ioh. 6.51. dyed. But as for this meat which thou receivest, yea, this liuing bread which came downe from Heaven, it ministreth and yeeldeth vnto thee, the sub­stance of eternall life: and whosoever ea­teth of this bread, shall not die for ever, because it is the body of Christ. Marke in what respect, this Doctor saith that [Page 39] that meat, which the faithfull receiue in the Church, is Christs body, for he saith: This liuing bread, which came down from heaven, ministreth or yeel­deth the substance of eternal life. Doth it, as it is corporally taken, or as it is ground and chawed with the teeth, or as it is swallowed with the throte, or re­ceived into the paunch, doth it, I say, in these respects minister or yeeld the substance of everlasting life? No veri­ly; for so it feedeth our flesh that shall die, neither doth it giue any incorrup­tion, neither can it in that sense be tru­ly said, that whosoever shall eate this bread shall never die, for that which the body receiveth, is corruptible, and cannot by any meanes, performe this pleasure for the body it selfe, that it should never die, the reason is, because that looke whatsoever is it selfe, sub­iect to corruption, is not powerfull, or sufficient, to giue eternitie. Wherefore in that bread there is life, but yet that life appeareth not to the bodily eyes, but is beheld with the eye of faith:Ioh 6.50.51. yea that is the liuing bread in deed, which [Page 40] came downe from heaven: and of which it is truely said, Whosoever eateth it shall never die, and which is also, the Lords body.

Againe, the same holy Doctor, spea­king of the almighty power of Christ, faith thus;Ambro. sa­cra. lib. Cannot the word of Christ, which was able of nothing, to make every thing that is, be strong and sufficient e­nough, to change things that are, into that, which they were not? for it is not a greater or harder matter to create and giue new things: than to change the na­tures of things. Saint Ambrose saith, that there is a change made in that myste­rie, of the bodie and blood of Christ, and that it is done marveilously and wonderfully, because it is done di­vinely and heavenly, and that it is done vnspeakably, because it is of it selfe in­comprehensible. Now I would faine haue them, that will in this mysterie, take and vnderstand nothing, accor­ding to the hidden power that lyeth within, but iudge of the whole, accor­ding to that, which visibly and out­wardly appeareth, I would faine haue [Page 41] these men, I say, to tell me, in what re­spect, the change is made in this my­sterie? If they will say, that it is made in respect of the substance of the crea­tures. I answere, that that cannot be so, for in respect of the substance of the creatures, look whatsoever they were, before consecration, they are even the same afterwards: but they were Bread and Wine before, and therefore they remaine the same, which is proved be­cause we see, that even when they are consecrated, they remaine in the same kinde and forme. Wherefore that which our faith looketh vpon, is chan­ged inwardly, by the almightie power of the holy Ghost, and is it that which feedeth the soule, and ministreth or yeeldeth the substance of eternall life. Againe, the same Doctor, a little after saith: Why doest thou here, Amb. loco supra citato. in the myste­rie of Christs bodie, seeke for the order of nature, seeing that he, being the Lord God himselfe, was beside, and without the course of nature, borne of a Virgin? Obiect. Here the hearer, scholler, or learner riseth vp and saith; That, that is Christs bo­dy, [Page 42] which is seene, and that, that is his blood which is drunke: and that wee must not inquire how it is made or become his body, but beleeue & hold, that so it is become his body. Answ. I an­swere: Thou imaginest and supposest, that thou thinkest well, but if thou di­ligently looke into, the nature & force of the words, thou shalt see thou sayest nothing. For thou affirmest, both that Christs body is seene, and his blood drunke: and also that thou doest faith­fully beleeue it, to be Christs bodie and blood: but I say, that these spee­ches cannot stand together, because, if thou doest beleeue it, thou doest not yet see it,2 Cor. 5.7. for we walke by faith, and not by sight. And againe, if thou seest it, thou shouldest say I see it to be Christs very body and blood, and shouldest not say, I beleeue it, to be Christs bo­dy and blood. But for as much as faith beholdeth that whole thing, whatsoe­ver that whole thing it selfe be, and the eye of flesh apprehendeth or laieth hold of nothing, the scholler or lear­ned shall vnderstand (which is also the [Page 43] Doctors meaning) that those things which are seene, are the body & blood of Christ, nor in kinde and forme, but in vertue and power: wherevpon also he saith, that we must not in this mat­ter, consider or behold the order of nature, but reverence and esteeme the high power of Christ, which maketh every thing, as he will, how he will, & into what he will, and createth that which was not, and being created, changeth it into that which it was not before.

The same Author addeth. Verily, Amb. loco eodem. that is the true flesh of Christ, which was crucified, and which was buried: and ther­fore this mysterie, must be in deede, the Sacrament of that flesh: which thing the Lord himselfe publisheth, & proclaimeth, saying: This is my body. O how dili­gently, and how wisely, is this distinc­tion and difference made? Of the flesh of Christ, which was crucified, and which was buried, according vnto which also Christ himselfe was both crucified & buried, the Doctor saith, that it is the very and true flesh of [Page 44] Christ: but of that which is received in the Sacrament he sayth; It is indeed the Sacrament of that true flesh. By these words, distinguishing the Sacrament of his flesh, from the truth of his flesh, or very flesh, in as much as in respect of the truth of that flesh, which he tooke of the Virgin, he said, that he was both crucified and buried. And wheras he said, that the mystery, which is at this day celebrated in the church, is the sacrament of that very and true flesh, in which Christ was crucified, he doth plainely instruct and teach the faithfull people, that that flesh, in which Christ was both crucified and buried, is not a mystery or Sacrament, but the truth of nature: and on the o­ther side he teacheth them, that this flesh, which now in a mysterie doth containe the likenesse of that flesh, is not that flesh in kinde or forme, but in a Sacrament; for in kinde and forme it is Bread, but in a Sacrament it is Christs very true bodie,Mat. 26.26. Ambr. loco citat. as the Lord Iesus himselfe affirmeth, saying; This is my body.

[Page 45]And the same Doctor in the words following, saith;Mat. 6.31. What these words should meane, mentioned in Matthew, what shall we eate? or what shall wee drinke? the holy Ghost, hath in another place, and after another sort expressed by his Prophet, saying; Taste yee, and see, Psal. 34.8. how gracious the Lord is: blessed is the man that trusteth in him. Doth that same Bread thinke you being tasted bodily, or that same Wine being drunke corporally, declare and shewe forth how sweet the Lord is? No veri­ly: for whatsoever it savoureth it is bo­dily, and delighteth onely the palate and throate. Shall we thinke that this is, to taste the Lord, to wit, to feele and savour some bodily thing? No verily: for the spirituall tasting and savouring of the Lord stirreth vs vp, to haue lit­tle or no regard, yea to be voyde, as it were of bodily savouring, and in that Bread, and in that drinke, to imagine or thinke of nothing corporally, but to feele and perceiue the whole spiri­tually, because the Lord is a spirit, Ioh. 4.24. and blessed is the man that trusteth in him.

[Page 46]And againe afterwards he saith thus; Christ is in that Sacrament, Amb. loco eodem. because it is the body of Christ: wherefore it is not bo­dily meate, but spirituall foode. What could be spoken more plainely, more manifestly, or more heavenly? for he saith; Christ is in that Sacrament: and yet he saith not, that that Bread and that Wine is Christ, which if he should say, he should set forth Christ, as though he were corruptible, and sub­iect to mortalitie (which be it farre from vs to thinke, much more to speake) for it is certaine that whatsoe­ver in that meate, is either bodily seene, or bodily tasted, all that is sub­iect to corruption. The Doctor ad­deth these words, Because it is the body of Christ. But perhaps here some man will stand vp and say: Behold he ma­nifestly and plainly confesseth, that that Bread and that Wine is Christes body. But withall marke I pray thee, how presently he addeth, That it is not bodily meate but spirituall foode. Bring not with you therefore the sense and feeling of the flesh, for by that, nothing [Page 47] either is, or can be perceived in this mystery. It is indeed Christs body, howbeit, not his bodily bodie, but his spirituall body. It is Christs blood, but not his bodily blood, but his spi­rituall blood. Wherfore nothing here is to be iudged, felt, or perceived bo­dily, but spiritually. It is Christs bo­die, but it is not his body bodily, and it is Christs blood, but yet it is not his blood, bodily.

Also afterwardes the same Father saith:Amb. eodem loco. 1 Cor. 10.3.4. Wherevpon the Apostle speaking of the figure of Christ, saith, that our Fa­thers did eate the same spirituall meate, and did drinke the same spirituall drinke: For the Lords bodie is a spirituall bodie, and the body of Christ is the body of the divine spirit. For Christ is a spirit, as we reade in the Lamentations of Ieremie: Christ the Lord is a spirit before our face. He hath most plainely taught vs, how we should vnderstand the mystery, of the body and blood of Christ. For when he had said, that our Fathers did eate spirituall meate, and did drinke spirituall drinke, (whereas notwith­standing, [Page 48] there is none that doubteth, but that the Manna which they did eate, and the water which they did drinke, were bodily things) he addeth cōcerning the mysterie, which is now administred in the Church, shewing and determining in what respect it is Christes bodie: For the Lords bodie (sayth he) is a spirituall body. Christ al­so is indeed God: and the body which he tooke of the Virgin Mary, the bo­die that suffered, that was buried, that rose againe, was certainely a very and true bodie, and the same also remai­ned visible and palpable, that is to say, might be seene and felt, but that body which is called the mysterie of God, is not bodily but spirituall: and if it be spirituall, then is it not visible or pal­pable, that is, it cannot be seene or felt. Herevpon blessed Ambrose addeth, saying; The body of Christ is the body of the divine spirit: Now the divine spirit is not any thing that is bodily, is not a­ny thing that is corruptible, or any thing that is palpable and may be felt. But this body which is celebrated and [Page 49] administred in the Church, is, in re­spect of the visible kinde and forme, both corruptible and palpable. Tell me then how it can be said, to be the body of the divine spirit? Verily no o­ther way, than in this respect, that it is spirituall, that is to say, in this respect, that it cannot be seene or felt, & there­fore incorruptible.

To this very end,Amb. eodem loco. in the words fol­lowing, he addeth, saying, Because Christ is a spirit as we reade, Christ the Lord is a spirit before our face. By which words he plainly sheweth in what re­spect it may be counted Christs body, to wit, in respect that there is in it, the spirit of Christ, that is to say, the pow­er of the divine or heavenly word, which doth not onely feede the soule, but also purge it and make it cleane. Wherefore the same Author saith af­terward; To conclude, this meate streng­theneth our hearts, and this drinke ma­keth mans heart merry and ioyfull, Psal. 104.5. as the Prophet saith. It cannot be denied, but that bodily meate, doth after a sort strengthen mans heart, and bodily [Page 50] drinke make his heart merry. But that the Doctor might shew what meate it is, and what drinke it is, of which he speaketh, he hath plainely and particu­larly added this meate and this drinke. What meate doth he meane, or what drinke? Forsooth Christs body, the body of the divine spirit, and that it might be the more plainely vttered, he saith, Christ is a spirit, of whom it is read, Christ the Lord is a spirit, before our face.

By all these places and speeches it plainely appeareth, that we ought not, or cannot, take or perceiue any thing bodily, in this meate, & in this drinke: but that the whole matter must be cō ­sidered and weighed spiritually. For the soule (which in the place present­ly alledged is meant by the heart of man) is not fed with bodily meate, or bodily drinke, but it is nourished, quickned, and made strong, with the Word of God.Ambr. sa­cra. lib. 5. Which thing the selfe same Doctor affirmeth more plainely in his fifth Booke of Sacraments. Not this Bread (saith he) which goeth into [Page 51] our bodies, but it is that bread of eternall life, which ministreth and yeeldeth sub­stance vnto our soules. And the things following in that booke or place, doe most manifestly declare that S. Am­brose spake not this of the common bread, but of the bread of Christs bo­die, for he speaketh of that daily bread, which the faithfull desire might be gi­ven them, and therefore he addeth; If it be daily bread, why doest thou re­ceiue it but once in a yeare, as the Greci­ans which dwell in the East, are wont to doe? Wherefore receiue that daily, which may daily profit thee: and liue so, that thou maiest be found meete and worthy daily to receiue it. Wherefore it is manifest, of what bread he speaketh, to wit, of the bread of the body of Christ, which su­staineth and vpholdeth the substance of the soule, not in respect as it goeth and entreth into the bodie, but in re­spect as it is Bread of everlasting life.

Thus you see, that by the authori­tie of this most learned man, wee are taught, that that bodie, in which Christ suffered, and that blood, which [Page 52] hanging vpon the Crosse, he shed out of his side, doth very much differ from that body, which the faithfull doe daily celebrate and receiue in the my­sterie of Christs passion, and from that blood, which is received by the mouth of the beleevers, seeing it is but a my­sterie of that blood, in and by which, the whole world was Redeemed. For this Bread and this Wine, are not Christs bodie and blood, in respect that they are to be seene bodily, but in respect that they doe spiritually mini­ster and yeeld vnto vs, the substance of life. And as for that bodie, wherein Christ suffered once for all, it shewed forth no other kinde or forme, than that, in which it consisted and was. For it was truely and indeed the very selfe same, which it was when it was seene, which it was when it was touched, which it was when it was crucified, & which it was when it was buried. In like sort, the blood, that did gush and flow out of his side, did not appeare one thing outwardly, and cover or shaddow another thing inwardly: [Page 53] Wherefore the very blood of Christ, did flow from his very and true body: but now the blood of Christ, which the faithfull drinke vp, and his body which they eate, are one thing in kind and forme, and another thing in sig­fication. They are one thing in that they feed the body with bodily meat: and another thing, in that they fat and feed the soules and mindes of men, with the substance of eternall life.

Of this thing Saint Hierom, Hieronim in epist. ad Eph. in his Commentary vpon Pauls Epistle to the Ephesians, writeth thus: The blood and flesh of Christ is vnderstood two man­ner of wayes: Ioh. 6.55. For either it is that spiri­rituall and divine flesh and blood, of which he himselfe saith, my flesh is meat indeed, and my blood is drinke indeed: or else it is put for that flesh which was crucified, and for that blood which was shed with the souldiers speare. This Doctor hath made a distinction, concerning the body and blood of Christ, and this he hath done with a very great diffe­rence. For whilest that hee saith, that the flesh and blood which the faith­full [Page 54] doe daily receiue, are spirituall things: and saith on the other side, that the flesh which was crucified, and the blood, which was shed with the souldiers speare, cannot bee affirmed to be spirituall or divine, hee plainely declareth, that they differ so much as spirituall and corporall things, or vi­sible and invisible things, or as divine and humane, doe differ one of them from another, and that therefore for as much as they differ one of them from another, both of them bee not, neither indeed can bee, one and the selfe same thing. Now that spirituall flesh, which is received by the mouth of the faithfull, and that spirituall blood which is daily offered to bee drunke of the beleevers, doe without doubt differ from that flesh, which was crucified & frō that blood which was shed by the souldiers speare, as the authority of this present person alledged, doth witnesse. Wherefore they bee not all one: For that flesh that was crucified, was made of the flesh of the Virgin, and was compa­cted or did consist, of bones and si­newes, [Page 55] and was besides distincted by the lineaments and proportions of the parts and members of mens bodies, and was through the spirit of a reaso­nable soule, quickned into his owne life, and fit motions agreeing thereto: But the spirituall flesh, which doth spiritually feed the beleeving people, in respect of the kind or forme which it sheweth forth outwardly, doth, be­ing made by the Artificers hand, con­sist of certaine graines of Corne or wheat, and is not compacted of any sinewes or bones, nor distincted by any diversity of members, nor made liuely by any reasonable substance, nor able to exercise any proper moti­tions (for whatsoever in it doth mini­ster or yeeld the substance of life, per­taineth to a spirituall power, and be­longeth to an invisible efficacy, and to a heavenly vertue or force) but is in­deed, in respect of that which is out­wardly seene, farre differing from that which is beleeved in the mystery. Be­sides that flesh of Christ which was crucified, did not shew any other thing [Page 56] outwardly, then that it was inwardly, because it was the very flesh of a very man, being also a very body in the kinde and forme of a very body.

Furthermore wee must consider, that there is figured by that bread, not onely Christs owne body, but also the body of the people that beleeue in him: whereupon it is made of many graines of wheate,1 Cor. 16.17 because the bodie of the beleeving people, is through the Word of Christ increased, with many faithfull ones. Wherefore, as the bread which is Christs body, is received in a mystery: so also, the members of the people, that beleeue in Christ, are de­clared in a mystery. And as that bread is said to bee the bodie of the belee­vers, not bodily, but spiritually: so must wee needs vnderstand it to bee Christs bodie, not bodily, but spiri­tually. So likewise in the wine, which is called Christs blood, water is ap­pointed to be mixed, and the one is not suffred to be offred without the other, to declare, that the people cannot bee without Christ, nor Christ without his [Page 57] people, even as the head cannot bee without the body, nor the body with­out the head. Wherefore the water in that Sacrament, beareth the image of people, and representeth them. There­fore, if that wine, being sanctified by the office and service of the Ministers, be turned bodily into Christs blood, the water which is mixed together with it, must of necessity bee bodily turned into the blood of the beleeving people. For where there is but one sanctification, and by consequent one operation or working, yea, where there is but a like consideration, it must needs then there follow, that that mystery is like. But we see, that in the water, in respect of the body thereof, there is nothing turned, wherefore it followeth very well, that in the wine there is nothing turned bodily: What­soever is set out in the water concer­ning the body of the people, the same is taken spiritually. Wherefore, what­soever is shewed foorth in the wine, concerning Christs blood, the same must of necessity be taken spiritually.

[Page 58]Againe, the things which doe dif­fer one of them from another, be not all one. That body of Christ which died, and rose againe, and became im­mortall,Rom. 6.9. dieth not now, neither shall death any more now beare rule ouer it, for it is eternall and cannot now suffer any thing. But that which is celebra­ted and administred in the Church, is temporall, and not eternall, is corrup­tible, & not incoruptible, is in the way homeward, and not in it owne coun­trey: Wherefore they must needs dif­fer one of them from another, and so by consequent are not all one: and if they be not all one, how is it said to bee Christs true body, and his very blood? For if it be Christs body, and be truly so said to be (as if it be Christs body, it must bee his body in truth) and if it be Christs body in truth or truly, then it must needs bee that bo­die of Christs which is incorruptible, and impasible, and so by consequent eternall: Whereupon also it must of necessity follow, that that bodie of Christs which is celebrated and admi­nistred [Page 59] in the Church, must be incor­ruptible and eternall: but we cannot deny, but that that thing is corrup­tible, which being changed is di­uided into peeces, to bee received, and being broken or ground with the teeth, passeth into the body and belly. And yet that is one thing, which is done outwardly, and that is another thing which is inwardly be­leeved through faith. That which belongeth to the senses of the body is corruptible, but that which faith be­leeveth is incorruptible. Wherefore that which appeares outwardly, is not the thing it selfe, but the image or re­presentation of the thing, but that is the truth of the thing, and the thing it selfe, which is perceived & vnderstood by the minde.

Hereupon blessed Augustine, in his Exposition vpon Iohns Gospell, spea­king of the body and blood of Christ, saith thus: Moses also did eate Manna, Aug. in Ioh. tract. 26. so did Aaron, and so did Phiwees: yea many others did eate Manna in the Wil­dernesse, who also pleased God, and yet [Page 60] are not dead. And why so? because they did spiritually vnderstand, the visible food, they did spiritually hunger after it, they did spiritually taste it, that so they might bee spiritually satisfied and filled. For even wee also our selues, doe at this day receiue visible food, but the Sacra­ment is one thing, and the vertue or power of the Sacrament is another thing. Like­wise in the words following:Aug. tract. eodem. This is the bread which came downe from hea­ven. Manna signified this bread: the al­tar of God also signified this bread. They were Sacraments: and are diverse or differing one of them from another, in re­spect of their signes, but are equall and like, yea all one in the matter that is sig­nified by them. Hearken what the Apo­stle Paul saith: 1 Cor. 10.1.2. &c. I would not haue you ig­norant (brethren) that all our Fathers were vnder the Clowd, and that all pas­sed through the Sea, and were all bapti­sed vnto Moses, in the Clowd and in the Sea, and did all eate the same spirituall meate, and did all drinke the same spiri­tuall drinke. Verily they had the same spirituall both meate and drinke, but a­nother [Page 61] bodily both meate and drinke, for they had Manna, and we another thing, and yet they had the same spirituall thing that we haue. And the Apostle addeth: and they did all drinke the same spirituall drinke. They drunke one thing, and wee another, but that was in respect of visible kinde or forme, and yet they both signified one thing by spirituall power. For how o­therwise could it be the same drinke. They drank (saith he) of the spirituall rock that followed them: and the rocke was Christ. From thence came the bread, from thence came the drinke. The rocke was Christ in sign & figure, but the very & true Christ is in word and in flesh. Againe,Aug. tract. eodem. in the same place: This is the bread that came downe from heaven, so that whosoever shall eate of it, shall not dye: but yet hee must eate that, which appertaineth to the vertue and power of the Sacrament, and not that onely which appertaineth to the visible Sacrament. And such a one is hee as eateth inwardly, and not outwardly on­ly: and as eateth the same in his heart through faith, and not that pearceth or presseth it with his teeth.

[Page 62]And in another place of his saide Exposition vpon Iohn, bringing in our Saviours words, hee speaketh thus:Aug. in Ioh. tract 27. Doth this offend you, that I said, behold, I giue you my flesh to eate, and my blood to drinke? What then if ye shall see the Sonne of man ascend vp, where he was before? What meaneth this? Doth hee by this speech loose that which moved them? Doth hee by so saying open that wherewith they were offended? Yea ve­rily, and that fully also, if they could haue vnderstood it. For they thought, that he would haue given his body, but hee said that hee would goe vp into heaven, and that whole as he was: as though he should say: When yee shall see the Sonne of man ascending vp where hee was before, at the least even then yee shall know, that hee will not giue his body after such a manner and fashion, as you imagine and fantasie: yea, and even then also yee shall vnder­stand, that his grace is not consumed or eaten vp by bytings and morsels. For the Lord himselfe saith: It is the spirit that quickeneth, the flesh profiteth nothing. And after that hee had vttered many [Page 63] words and sentences, hee againe addeth: Aug. tract. eodem. Rom. 8.9. Whosoever (saith the Apostle) hath not the spirit of Christ, the same is none of his. Wherefore it is the spirit that quick­neth, the flesh profiteth nothing. The words that I haue spoken vnto you, are spirit and life. What meaneth this that they are spirit and life? That is to say, they must be spiritually vnderstood. Hast thou vnderstood them spiritually: then are they spirit and life to thee. Hast thou vnderstood them carnally: yea even so are they spirit and life, but not vnto thee.

By the authority of this Doctor, handling the Lords words, concer­ning the Sacrament of his body and blood, wee are plainely taught, that those words of the Lord must bee vn­derstood spiritually, and not carnally, even as himselfe saith:Ioh. 6.63. The words which I speake vnto you are spirit and life: yea even those words verily which hee spake concerning the eating of his flesh, and the drinking of his blood: For he speaketh of those words where­with his Disciples were offended. Wherefore, to the end they might [Page 62] [...] [Page 63] [...] [Page 64] not be offended, the heavenly Master or Teacher, calleth them back frō the flesh to the spirit, and from bodily sight, to invisible vnderstanding. We see therefore in what respect that meat of the Lords body, and that drinke of his blood, are truly and indeed his bo­die, and truly and indeed his blood, to wit, in respect that they are spirit and life.

Moreover: such things as bee all one, are contained in or vnder one de­finition. Now it is affirmed, of the ve­ry and true body of Christ, that hee is very God and very man: God as hee was begotten of the father from be­fore all beginnings: and man, as hee was towards the end of the world, conceived and borne of the Virgine Mary. But these things cannot bee said of that body of Christ, which by a mystery is celebrated and admini­stred in the Church, and yet it is after a certaine manner knowne to bee Christs body: now that manner is in figure and representation, that so the truth, and the thing it selfe, may bee [Page 65] the better perceived.

In these prayers, which are sayd af­ter the mystery of the body and blood of Christ, and whereunto the people answer, Amen, thus it is vttered with the Priests voyce: Wee, that doe take or receiue the pledge of everlasting life, doe humbly beseech thee to grant, that we may with a manifest and plaine parta­king receiue that, which we touch, in the image or representation of the Sacra­ment.

Now wee know that a pledge and an image or representation, appertaine to another thing, that is to say, haue respect not to themselues, but to ano­ther thing. For a pledge is a pledge of that thing, for the pledging where­of it is given, and not the thing it selfe, as likewise an image is the image of that thing, the likenesse whereof it doth represent or shew forth. For these things doe signifie the thing it selfe, whose picture and pledge they are, and yet for all that, they doe not very manifestly declare the things themselues. Which seeing it is so, it [Page 66] plainely appeareth, that this body and blood, are the pledge, and (as it were) the picture, or representation of a thing that shall be, to the end, that that which is now shewed by a simili­tude, may in time hereafter to come, be, by manifestation, or manifestly re­vealed. Wherevpon, I conclude, that if now they signifie, and in time to come shall make manifest, or lay open, that then, that is one thing, which is done and performed now, and that that is another thing, which shall in time to come, be manifested and layd open. Wherefore, that which the Church celebrateth and administreth, is both the body and blood of Christ, but yet as a pledge, and (as it were) the picture, or representation. But then it shall be the truth, when as now, not the pledge, nor the picture, or repre­sentation of the thing shall appeare, but the truth of the thing it selfe.

Also in another place of the sayde prayers; We beseech thee Lord to graunt that thy Sacraments may worke that in vs, which they doe containe, that looke what [Page 67] we now administer and receiue in forme, we may also receiue it in the truth of the things. He saith, that these things are celebrated and done, in shew & forme, and not in truth, that is, in similitude or likenesse, and not in the declarati­on of the thing it selfe. Now the forme and shew of a thing, and the veritie or truth of the selfe same thing, differ one of them from another. Wherefore that body and blood, which is celebrated and received in the Church, differeth from that bodie and blood, which is known to be now glorified in Christs body, thorow his Resurrection. And the former of these two bodies is a pledge and figure: and this latter is the very truth it selfe, for the former is celebrated and administred, till such time, as we may come to the other: but when we shall once come to this latter, the former shall be removed and taken away. Wherefore it appreareth, that they are by a very great difference sundred one of them from the other: yea, looke what difference there is be­tweene the pledge and thing for which [Page 68] the pledge is given, and betweene an Image, or the thing whose Image it is, or betweene the forme and shew of a thing, and the truth it selfe, so much difference there is, betweene the one and the other. Thus we see, that that mysterie of the bodie and blood of Christ, which the faithfull doe nowe receiue in the Church, doth much dif­fer, & is farre severed from that body, which was borne of the Virgin Ma­ry, which suffered, which was buried, which rose againe, which ascended in­to heaven, and which sitteth at the right hand of the Father. For that which is celebrated & received, while we are in the way of this life, must be spiritually received and vnderstoode; for Faith beleeveth the thing which it seeth not, & layeth hold of that which doth spiritually feed the soule, and make glad the heart, and giveth eter­nall life, and incorruption, whilest we looke not vpon that, which feedeth the body, or is pressed with the teeth, or is broken in peeces, but that only which is spiritually received in faith: where­as [Page 69] that bodie, in which Christ suffered and rose againe, is his owne very bo­dy, which he tooke of the body of the Virgin Mary, which also was palpa­ble and visible, yea, and that after his Resurrection; even as he himselfe saith vnto the Disciples:Luke 24.38.39. Why are yee trou­bled? and wherefore doe thoughts and doubts arise in your hearts? Beholde my handes and my feete, for it is I my selfe. Handle me and see, for a spirit hath not flesh and bones as yee see me haue.

Let vs heare also what blessed Ful­gentius writeth in his Booke of Faith; Looke that thou doe most stedfastly be­leeue, Fulgen. de fide. and at no hand doubt that the onely begotten Word of God became flesh, Ephes. 5.2. and offered vp himselfe for vs as an offering, and a sacrifice, of a sweet smelling savour vnto God. Vnto whom, with the Father, and the holy Ghost, the Patriarkes, Pro­phets, and Priestes, did in the time of the olde Testament, offer vp Beasts and sacri­fice them: and vnto whom also, with the Father, and the holy Ghost (with whom he is of one and the selfe same God-head) the holy Catholique Church being disper­sed [Page 70] throughout the whole world, ceaseth not in faith, and loue, to offer vp, the sa­crifice of Bread and Wine. For in those sa­crifices of flesh and Beasts, there was a sig­nification of Christes flesh, which even he himselfe being without sinne should offer for our sinnes: and of his blood also, which he should shed for the forgiuenesse of our sinnes: but in this sacrifice of Bread and Wine, there is a thankesgiving for, and a remembrāce of that flesh of Christ, which he offered vp for vs: and of that blood, which he himselfe, being very God, did shed for vs: Act. 20.28. of which S. Paul speaketh in the Acts of the Apostles, and in the xx. Chapter of the said booke, saying: Take heed vnto your selues, and to all the flocke, whereof the holy Ghost hath made you Bi­shops or over-seers, to governe the Church of God, which he hath purchased with his owne blood. Wherefore there was in the former sacrifices figuratiuely signified, that that should be given to vs: but there is in this sacrifice evidently and plainely decla­red, what is given vnto vs. Now the Doctor in saying, that there was in those sacrifices signified, what should [Page 71] be given vnto vs, and that in this sacri­fice, there was declared what was gi­ven vnto vs alreadie, he doth plainely declare, that as those sacrifices had the figure of things to come, so our sacri­fice is a figure of things that are past. By which speeches he hath most evi­dently declared, what great difference there is, betweene that bodie wherein Christ suffered, and this body which is celebrated and administred in the remembrance of his Passion, or death. For that body wherein he suffered, was his proper, and very or true body, having no mysticall or figuratiue mat­ter in it: But this latter is a mysticall bodie, shewing one thing outwardly in figure, and inwardly representing another thing, thorowe the vnderstan­ding and apprehension of faith.

Moreover, let vs adde and put downe one other testimony of that reverent Father, Augustine, which shall both warrant the truth and credit of our sayings, and make an end of our Ora­tion and speech. In a certaine Sermon,Aug. de sa­cra. altar. Serm. which he made to the people concer­ning [Page 72] the Sacrament of the Altar, thus he saith. The thing which you see on Gods Altar, you saw the same the night that is past: but as yet yee haue not heard, what it is, what it meaneth, and of how great a matter it containeth the Sacrament. The thing which you see is bread, and the cup, which thing also your owne eyes doe de­clare vnto you: but as concerning that wherein your faith requireth to be instru­cted, the Bread is the body of Christ, and the cup is his blood. Truely this is shortly sayd, and it may be perhaps sufficient for faith, but yet faith alwayes needeth in­struction; Esay 7.9. For the Prophet sayth, Vnlesse yee beleeue, yee shall not vnderstand. You may peradventure say vnto me; Thou biddest vs beleeue, but yet we say, declare it vnto vs, that we may vnderstand. For such a thought may arise in some mans mind: We know from whom our Lord Ie­sus Christ tooke his flesh, to wit, of the Virgin Mary: hee being an Infant, did sucke, and was nourished, and did grow and came to mans age, he suffered perse­cution at the Iewes handes, he was han­ged vpon a tree, he was killed, he was ta­ken [Page 73] from the Crosse, he was buried, the third day he rose againe, he ascended into heaven, even what day pleased him, thi­ther he carryed vp his body, from thence shall he come to iudge the quicke and the dead, and he is there now sitting at the right hand of the Father. How then is the bread his body? and the cup, or that which is contained in the cup, how is it his blood? These things (good brethren) are there­fore called Sacraments, because one thing is seene in them, and another thing vnder­stood: that which is seene, hath a bodily kinde, forme, and shew: but that which is vnderstood, hath spirituall fruit. The reverend Authour in speaking these things instructeth vs, what wee ought to thinke and hold, both concerning the Lords owne bodie, which was borne of the Virgin Mary, and sitteth now at the right hand of GOD, and in which he shall come to judge the quicke and the dead: and also con­cerning that body, which is set on the Altar, and whereof the people are par­takers. That body is sound and whole, and is not divided by any cutting, nei­ther [Page 74] covered with any figures: but this bodie which is set vpon the Lords Table, is both a figure, because it is a Sacrament, and also as it is outwardly seene, hath a bodily kinde and forme that feedeth the body, but as it is in­wardly vnderstood, it hath a spirituall fruit, which quickeneth the soule.

Aug. de sa­cra. altar. Serm. 1 Cor. 12.27.And the same Doctor, minding to speake somewhat more plainely and manifestly, of this mysticall body, in the words following, saith thus; If yee will therefore vnderstand what Christes body meanes, heare the Apostles, saying: Yee are the body of Christ, and members for your part. If then yee be the bodie of Christ, and members for your part, your mysterie is set on the Lords Table, and yee receiue the mystery of the Lord. You answere: Amen, to that thing which you your selues be, and by so answering, you subscribe and consent to the same. Thou hearest then Christes body, and thou an­swerest, Amen: be a member of the body of Christ, that so thy Amen may be true and right. But wherefore is this done in bread? In this matter we will bring forth [Page 75] nothing of our owne devise, let vs rather heare the Apostle himselfe vtter his minde, when speaking of this Sacrament, he sayth, we that are many, are one bread, 1 Cor. 10.17. and one body, &c. This holy man Augustine doth sufficiently instruct vs, that as Christes bodie is signified by the Bread which is set vpon the Altar, so also there is thereby signified by the bodie of the people that receiveth it, manifestly thereby declaring, that that is Christes proper or owne body, in which he was borne of the Virgin, in which he sucked, in which he suf­fered, in which be died, in which he was buried, in which he rose againe, in which he ascended into Heaven, in which he sitteth at the right hand of the Father, and in which he shall come to judge the quicke and the dead: Whereas that which is set vp­on the Lords Table, conteineth the mysterie of the other, even as it doth likewise containe, the mysterie of the beleeving people, the Apostle him­selfe witnessing the same, and say­ing: Wee that are many, are one bread, 1 Cor. 10.17. [Page 76] and one body in Christ.

Your wisdome (most noble Prince) may perceiue and vnderstand, that I haue both by the testimonies of the sacred Scriptures and by the sayings of the holy Fathers, faithfully alledged and layd downe, most evidently de­clared, and plainely prooved, that that bread which is called Christs bodie, and that cup which is called Christs blood, is a figure, because it is a my­stery: and also that there is no small difference, betweene that his body, which is so in a mystery, and that his body, which suffer [...] and was buried, and rose againe, because in that was the very proper bodie of our Saviour, neither was there in it, any figure or or signification, but the manifestation and plainenesse of the thing it selfe was knowne, as also the beleevers at this day, doe desire the sight thereof: for that is our head, and when wee see it,Ioh. 10.30. our desire shall be satisfied: for he and the Father are one, not in respect that our Saviour hath a body, but in re­spect of the fulnesse of the godhead, Col. 2.9. [Page 77] which dwelt in Christ, as hee was man. Whereas in this, which is cele­brated and administred by a mystery, there is a figure not onely of Christs owne body, but also of the body of the people, that beleeue in Christ: for it beareth the figure of both the bodies, that is to say, both of Christ bodie which suffered, and rose again, and of the people, that are in Christ through Baptisme borne againe, and quickened from the dead.

Hereunto let vs adde also, that this bread, and this cup, which is called the body and blood of Christ, doth lieuely represent or set out the remem­brance of the Lords passion or death, even as hee himselfe hath sayd in the Gospell:Luk. 22.19. Doe ye this in remembrance of mee: which the Apostle Paul ex­pounding, saith:1 Cor. 11.26. So often as yee shall eate of this bread, and drinke of this cup, yee shall shew forth the Lords death till hee come. Here we are taught by our Saviour, & by the holy Apostle Saint Paul, that that bread, and that wine, which is set on the Altar, is there set [Page 78] for a figure or remembrance of the Lords death, to the end it might call back to our remembrance, that which hath beene done in time past, that so wee being made mindefull of that his passion, might by it be made partakers of Gods gifts and graces, by which also wee are delivered from death, knowing this, that when wee shall come to the sight and beholding of Christ, we shall haue no need of such instruments and meanes, thereby to be put in remembrance, what his vn­measurable and infinite goodnesse hath endured for vs: the reason is, because that When wee shall behold him face to face, 1 Cor. 13.12. wee shall be put in minde, not by any outward admonition of temporall things, but we shall behold him in the very contemplation and sight of the truth it selfe, and to be in­structed how we ought to giue thanks to the author of our saluation.

And yet I would haue no man thinke, that because wee speake thus, that therefore the faithfull doe not in the mystery of the Sacrament, receiue [Page 79] the Lords body and blood, because faith receiveth that thing, not which the eye seeth, but that which the hart beleeveth: for it is a spirituall meate, and a spirituall drinke, spiritually fee­ding the soule, and giving the life of everlasting fulnesse, even as our Savi­our himselfe commending and set­ting out this mystery, saith:Ioh. 6.63. It is the spirit that quickeneth, the flesh profiteth nothing.

Thus I being a man of very small gifts, and desiring to yeeld obedience vnto your Excellencies commande­ment, haue presumed and vndertaken to dispute, or reason of no small mat­ters: wherein I haue not followed the presumption of mine owne thin­king or iudgement, but regarded ra­ther the authority of the ancient Fa­thers: which, if your Highnes shall allow, as spoken Catholikely & Chri­stianly, impute it I pray you to the de­serts and worthinesse of your owne zeale and religion, which was not a­shamed (having for a while layd aside the glory of your Kingly magnifi­cence) [Page 80] to demand an answer concer­ning the truth, of such a poore and base person as I am. But if happily these things shall not please and de­light you, ascribe it vnto my folly and vnskilfulnesse, which could not ef­fectually declare that which your Highnesse wished, and I my selfe greatly desired.

Here endeth Bertrams Booke, concerning the Body and Blood of the Lord.


IN the Epistle] Whether he spurious, (reade) whether he be spurious.

In the Preface next following.
  • PAge 2. Charlemayne the Great, (reade) Charles the Great.
  • Page 7. Trithenius (reade) Trithemi­us.
  • Page 9. Sendeth greeting (reade) send greeting.
In the Booke of Bertram.
  • FOl. 5. Outwardly locked vp (reade) outwardly looked vpon.
  • Fol. 9. In colour or in favour (reade) in colour or in savour.

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