Imprimatur, Liber cui Titulus, [The Absolute Impos­sibility of Transubstantiation Demonstrated.]

Maij 3. 1688.

Guil. Needham RR. in Christo P. ac D. D. Wilhelmo Ar­chiep. Cant. a Sacr. Dom.

THE Absolute Impossibility OF Transubstantiation DEMONSTRATED.

LONDON: Printed for William Rogers, at the Sun over-against St. Dunstan's Church in Fleetstreet. MDCLXXXVIII.


UPON a careful Review of this ensuing Dis­course, I find no cause to make any abatement from the Title of it, which promises to the Reader no less than strict Demonstration. If any of the following Arguments should happen to fall short of these pretensions to the highest and clearest sort of Proof that can be, it is wholly My fault, and I will mend it upon the first Notice of it. For I am sure that the Subject-matter is capable of the most rigorous Demonstra­tion that ever was; and it has always been held, That the Essential Properties and Affections of a Body, such as Quantity, Figure, and its relation to Place, &c. are the Proper Subject of Demonstration. And let me here add, That such a Doctrine as Transubstantiation, nei­ther is, nor can be, a Matter of Revelation.

For Scripture was given us, Either (1st) to Reveal things which were unknown to us by Natural Light: Such as the manner of the Creation of the World, and the grea­ter and more amazing Secret of the Redemption of it, wherein all Heaven was engaged; the Father sent the Son, and the Son afterwards sent the Holy Ghost; upon which occasion we have a clear and manifest declaration of that Doctrine, which is commonly called the Trinity of Persons in the Godhead, which was not so express be­fore, under the Old Testament. To these may be added, [Page ii]the assurance which is given us of a Resurrection, and of a future Judgment, and of the different portion of good and bad men; of the one in Happiness with all the bles­sed Company of Heaven, and of the other in Eternal Tor­ments prepared for the Devil and his Angels. Now these are things which were Ʋndiscoverable by Natural Light; but being Revealed, are very agreeable to it, and in no­wise contradict it.

Or (2dly) To furnish us with an History of Providence, and of God's government of the World: Wherein most of the Divine Attributes are visibly displayed. His Ho­liness and Justice are to be seen in his Judgments, his Mercy in Deliverances, his Power in Miracles; his Know­ledg, Faithfulness and Truth, in Prophesies; and the like. Now this part of Scripture does only clear up and exem­plify our Natural Knowledg of God; and our Reason is so far from being distressed, that it is very much strengthened and confirmed by it: As, to compare great things with small, the Grammar Rule is proved and confirmed by the Example.

Or (3dly) It was given us to improve our Natural Notices, and inforce our Natural Obligations to those Duties, which we owe to God, our Neighbour, and our selves. And here our Reason triumphs, and is made perfect.

Or (4thly) To establish certain Religious Ordinances and Institutions; such as are the Sacraments, Religious Assemblies, Preaching, and the like: which our very Reason d [...]es subscribe and approve as wise and holy Ap­pointments, and as highly Instrumental to a good Life.

Now these are matters worthy of God, and such as all the Wisdom in the World would expect should be the Con­tents of a Divine Revelation. If God should vouchsafe to make new Discoveries to the World, a man would look [Page iii]for somewhat of this nature, which should improve us, and supply the defects of Humane Ʋnderstanding, and tend to the perfecting of our Nature. But no man would expect, that God should send after us from Heaven to unteach us all that ever he had taught us in the day of our Creation, and to bless us with such Discoveries as these. That the same Body is in the same Place, and is not in the same Place at the same time. That the Duration of 24 Hours is the Duration of 1688 Years. That a Miles Distance, and the Distance of 10000 Miles is Equal. That the same thing may Exist and not Exist at once. That the self-same single thing may have two con­trary Natures at the same time, and not be what it is; together with the rest of the Mysteries of Transubstan­tiation. We are sure that a Divine Revelation cannot contradict the Common Sense and Reason of Mankind; for that would be to pronounce them False Witnesses of God, when by these alone we know that there is a God, and are led to the discovery of his Eternal Power and Godhead; which must be known before we can think of Revelation. For it is in vain to talk of the Word of God, till we know that there is a God whose Word this Revelation is. In short, If any supposed Revelation should contradict the plain Principles of Reason, it would be the same thing, or rather worse, than if that Revelation should contradict it self. For if a Revelation should contradict it self, we could not indeed receive it upon those terms, because we should be bound to believe it and disbelieve it at once, and therefore we could not believe it at all; But if this Revelation should contradict the plain Principles of Rea­son, then it would overthrow that Ʋnderstanding which we are sure we received from the hands of God: And there­fore if we should renounce our Reason to believe such a Re­velation, we must in that case part with a Certainty for [Page iv]an Ʋncertainty. For we cannot know (unless we will re­ceive it blindfold, and then we know nothing) That ever any Revelation came from God, till our Reason has made it out to us that it did: And therefore to abandon our Reason for the sake of any Revelation, is to make our selves surer of the thing proved, than of the Proof it self, which is very absurd; for that which makes us certain of another thing, must needs be first and best known to us.

I should not have put such a Case as this, for it is an impossible Case, but that the Papists themselves have put it, and have decided it the wrong way, and have made Axiomes and self-evident Principles out of the false de­termination of it. So Cartes concludes his First Book of Principles; ‘That we must fix this in our minds as the chief and principal Rule, That those things which are revealed to us by God, are to be believed as the most certain of all others: And altho perchance the most clear and evident Light of Reason that can be, should seem to suggest to us the contrary, yet we must believe Divine Authority alone, rather than our own Judg­ment.’ Now this I say is an impossible Case; for we have not a more clear and evident proof, than the most clear and most evident Light of Reason that can be, Ei­ther that God has revealed any one Doctrine in particular, Or made any Revelation at all, Or that there is a God. And therefore if any revealed Doctrine in particular can be supposed to contradict the most clear and and most evident Light of Reason that can be, so that it ought to be set aside, and disbelieved as False; Then that Do­ctrine does therein overthrow both its own Credit, and the belief of a Revelation in general, and even of a Deity: And consequently it is, as I said, an Impossible Case, and a perfect Inconsistency; for at once it supposes the belief of a Divine Revelation, and yet destroys the belief of any such thing.

The Gentlemen of the Port Royal, in their Logick or Art of Thinking, have advanced this Rule of Cartes to the state and degree of an Axiome, or undoubted Princi­ple: For in Part 4. Chap. 7. they make this, together with two other Axiomes which usher it in, to be the Foun­dation of Faith. I shall consider them all three.

AXIOME VIII. A Man ought not to deny that which is clear and evident, for not being able to comprehend that which is obscure. This is but a lame Axiome; for tho it be Truth, yet it is not the whole Truth in this matter: For a Man ought not to deny that which is clear and evident upon any account whatsoever. He ought not to go against known Truth, (for that is the English of what is clear and evident) for the sake of any thing, either known or unknown.

AXIOME IX. It is of the nature of a Finite mind, not to be able to comprehend that which is Infinite. This is an un­doubted Truth, and no man can gainsay it; only it has the misfortune to be found here in bad company, and to be applied to false purposes, as we shall see by and by.

AXIOME X. The Testimony of a Person infinitely powerful, in­finitely wise, infinitely good, and infinitely true, ought to have more force to persuade our Minds, than the most convincing Reasons. But I ask again, Have we any more, than the most convincing Reasons, to [Page vi]persuade us that there is any such Person thus qualified? Or that this Infinitely Credible and Adorable Being has given any Testimony at all? If not, Then I say, that this Axiome is an Inconsistency, it supplants it self, and un­dermines the very ground on which it stands. That must needs be a very tottering and ruinous foundation of Faith, which is established upon a contrariety and opposition to the Most Convincing Reasons: But an absurd Religion may be glad of such Axiomes as it can get, and must be content to be served with an absurd Logic.

The Messieurs promise us here to say somewhat more of Faith afterwards, which accordingly they do, Chap. 11. and therefore thither we will follow them, and see how they apply these Axiomes to establish Transubstantia­tion: Where first they inculcate their former Axiome in those words, Il est certain, &c. It is certain that Divine Faith ought to have more power over our Minds, than our own Reason. And this is certain, even by Reason it self, which shews us, that we ought always to prefer that which is more certain, before that which is less certain; and that it is more certain that what God says is true, than what our Reason persuades us; because God is more uncapable of Deceiving us, than our Reason of being Deceived.’ Now, if what Reason persuades us be not certain, when, for instance, it persuades us that there is a God, then there is no pos­sible certainty of a Revelation, which shall stand in com­petition with Reason, and be preferred before it. And therefore this is the the old Enchantment over again, which perfectly turns the Reason of Mankind into a Stone, so that it cannot move one step either forward or back­ward. For if the most clear and evident light of Rea­son that can be, (as Cartes's word is), if the most con­vincing Reasons (as the Port-Royal word is) may be [Page vii]false, Then it is impossible for us to know any thing: Nay, it is impossible for us so much as to know, that we know nothing.

But in the very next words they relent, and tell us quite another story. Neanmoins a considerer, &c. Nevertheless to consider things exactly, that which we evidently perceive, both by Reason, or by the faithful report of our Senses, is never contrary to that which Divine Faith teaches us. But that which makes us believe so, is, that we take no heed where it is that the evidence of our Reason and of our Senses ought to stop, and to go no further.’ Methinks men should con­sider things exactly, before they lay down Axiomes and first Principles, and not after: For now it seems that Revelation is never contrary to the evidence of Reason, or the faithful report of our Senses, (for if they are never contrary to that, then that is never contrary to them) and therefore the opposition which was supposed to be betwixt them, and the renouncing of Reason, and cleaving to Faith, which followed thereupon, proves to be wholly a mistake. So that they have plainly given up their 10th Axiome for Nonsense; and now they are up­on a new question, which is concerning the just bounds and full extent of Sense and Reason, and to shew how short sighted they both are, in discerning a bit of Bread.

Their next words are these: Par exemple, &c. For Example, Our Senses shew us clearly in the Sa­crament some roundness and whiteness; but our Senses do not teach us whether it be the substance of Bread which causes our eyes to perceive this Roundness and Whiteness: And thus Faith is not contrary to the evi­dence of our Senses, when it tells us, that this is not the substance of Bread, which is abolished, having [Page viii]been changed into the Body of Jesus Christ by the My­stery of Transubstantiation, and that we see nothing more than the species and appearances of Bread which still remain, although the substance be abolished, and be no more.’ When the Papists are disposed to make them­selves merry with the follies of us poor Hereticks, there is no such happy subject of their Drollery as this, That we pretend to see Substances, and have such exquisite Senses as will penetrate farther and deeper than all other mens. Now on the other hand we can tell them very se­riously, that we never saw Roundness or Whiteness in our lives, nor can any of our Senses shew us any such rarities: We cannot deny but that we have seen Round and White Substances or Bodies, or pieces of Matter, call them what you will; but as for Roundness and Whiteness, we believe them to be objects so dazling, that they would certainly blind us. The roundness, and whiteness, and sweetness which they see and tast in the Sacrament without a Sub­ject, are the round, and white, and sweet nothings which we never yet saw nor tasted, tho we sometimes promise them to our Children for Fairings: But Substances we continually see, and cannot look beside them: For every thing which is seen, heard, smelt, tasted, or felt, is a Substance, and which is more, it is a gross material Sub­stance, or else it could not affect and make an impression upon such gross material organs of Sense as ours are. What is it that so feelingly moves our Senses, and resists our Touch, but a Body or Material Substance? For Ten thousand Roundnesses and Whitenesses will not make up One object of Sense. And as for the instance which lies before us, of a piece of Bread, it is a Substance the most familiar, and the best-known to us of all others. We can see, and taste, and feel, and smell it, and know it blindfold. And not only we, but most of the Crea­tures [Page ix]about us can see, and taste, and smell the Substance of Bread as well as we, and know it very distinctly, and will single it out from twenty other Round and White Substances whatsoever. And their Senses were certainly given them to discern Substances, and not Accidents, for otherwise a round and white Stone, or a round and white Chip, would serve their turn as well; but Figure and Co­lour are not their business, but a Substance, which will nourish them, and which will be altered and assimilated into the substance of Flesh and Blood. And therefore whether the substance of a Wafer be Bread, or whether it be a Human Body, I will refer it wholly to all the Animals in the World, which love Bread, and will not seize upon a living Man; for they are competent and in­different judges in this matter: Always excepting those Animals which are the Masters of The School of the Eucharist; for they are all Parties and Bigots, and especially the Dog of Lisbon. In short, I challenge all the World to tell me, what there is belonging to the sub­stance of Bread, which we do not see and discern by our senses, and which is not faithfully reported to us by them. And therefore when our senses evidently shew us, that a Wafer is the substance of Bread, and on the other hand, the Popish Faith teaches us that it is not the substance of Bread, but the substance of a Human Body, That Faith is plainly contrary to the evidence of our Senses; which because the Messieurs said before, Divine Faith Never is, it leaves their Faith under a different cha­racter from that which is Divine.

They proceed in the following words, Nostre raison de mesme, &c. Our Reason in like manner shews us that one single Body is not at the same time in divers places, nor two Bodies in one and the same place; but [Page x]this ought to be understood of the natural condition of Bodies, because it would be a defect of Reason for a Man to imagine that our Mind, being Finite, is able to comprehend how far the Infinite Power of God reaches. And therefore when Hereticks, in order to destroy the Mysteries of Faith, as the Trinity, Incarnation and Eucharist, do object those Pretended Impossibilities which they draw from Reason, in this very thing they themselves do visibly depart from Reason, in pretend­ing to be able to Comprehend in their Finite Mind the Infinite extent of the Power of God.’

In this short passage there are many things liable to exception. For (1st,) Our Reason does not only shew us, that one single Body is not at the same time in divers Places, but it shews us also that it cannot be in divers Places at once, for this reason, because in that case one single Body would be divers Bodies, which is a Contra­diction. And therefore (2ly,) The Limitation which follows, is false, That this ought to be understood of the Natural Condition of Bodies, and restrained only to that. For whether Bodies be in a Natural condition, or Super­natural, one single Body cannot be divers Bodies at the same time, for then it is no longer one single Body. No Supernatural case or condition can make a Contradiction to be true. For instance, St. John Baptist told the Jews that God was able of those Stones, which lay upon the Banks of Jordan, to raise up Children unto Abraham. In their Natural condition they were Stones, but in this Supernatural condition they would have been Men; but in no condition was it possible for them to be both Stones and Men at the same time, because it is a Repugnancy. For to say, a Stone is a Man, is to say a Stone is not a Stone, that is to say, it is not, or it is nothing at all, [Page xi]which I hope no Man will say is the work of an Infinite Power. And therefore (3ly,) in saying That One Body cannot be in divers places at once, we do not thereby imagine that a Finite Mind can comprehend how far the Infinite Power of God reaches; This is both a false charge, and a false inference. For what has Omnipotency to do with Nothing? To effect Nothing, is a derogation to all Power, much more is it beneath that which is Infi­nite. When therefore we vindicate the Divine Power, and assert the Infinity of it, and say it is removed at the greatest distance from all defect, Is this to say that a Finite mind can comprehend it? No; God forbid that our heads s [...]t [...]ld be filled with such cross Popish Contra­dictions, as to say, that every Contradiction is Impossible, and yet this Contradiction is Possible; That a Finite may hold an Infinite, and that the Greater may be con­tained by the Less. We admire and adore the Infinite Power of God, and we are sensible of it every Minute, for in Him we live and move and have our Being, and yet we do not comprehend it; neither have we the least thought or imagination of Comprehending it; for we know that this is utterly Inconsistent with the necessary Imperfection and Limitation of a Creature state. The Infinite Power of God stands like a Great Mountain. Now we can see a great Mountain only by parts, and can­not view it all round at once, much less can we grasp or comprehend it, and take it up in our Arms. But yet as we know and see, that this incomprehensible Mountain (which is an Object too big for our Senses) is not a Valley; so we are full as sure that Perfection is not Im­perfection, and that Infinite Power (tho we never pre­tended to measure the extent of it) is free from all Impotency, and cannot atchieve Impossibilities and No­things. [Page xii]As we know by his Necessary Existence that God cannot cease to Be, and by his Infinite Wisdom that he cannot Err, and by his Infinite Truth that it is Im­possible for God to Lye: So we are assured by his Infi­nite Power that he cannot make a Contradiction, a No­thing, an Inconsistency, which is always unmade again as fast as it is made. If God should Create and Annihi­late a thing at once, he would plainly effect neither, and nothing would follow upon such an Impossible Act. (4thly,) The Messieurs insinuate, as if the Impossi­bilities which are brought against Transubstantiation were of the same sort, and as False and Pretended, as those which are objected against the Tr [...]ty, and the Incarnation of our Saviour; but I shall leave that to the judgment of every indifferent Reader, after he has weighed and considered the following Discourse.

And thus I have at least shaken those Axiomes, which were purposely erected as Strongholds, to cover and shel­ter the absurd Doctrines of the Church of Rome, and es­pecially that of Transubstantiation, by feigning that Re­velation and Reason are at variance, and that in that Case Reason is to be abandoned. It may justly be ad­mired that Cartes, a Man of clear Sense, should begin such Rules; but it is to be remembred, That he was to make some amends for the bold Truths he had elsewhere delivered; and likewise, That he was able to comple­ment the Church of Rome, as well as he did particular Persons, without being a Slave to his Complement: for when he was pressed with what he had said upon such Occasions, and with his own very words; he used to tell them, Urbanitas Styli Gallici te fefellit, you did not understand a French Complement. I doubt not but the Learned Men of the Port Royal did very well under­stand [Page xiii]it; but it is their Craft to make silver Shrines for Diana; and all the Commendation we can give them, is to say, that they are very able Workmen, and Masters of their Trade, such a one as it is.

To conclude, Reason is that whereby we chuse our Re­ligion, and judg whether it be a Revelation which came from God, and whereby we distinguish betwixt the Bible and the Alchoran. And, as Cartes says, Presp ad 2. Obj. Art. 5. If a Turk or a Heathen, being induced by some False Reasonings, should embrace Christianity, and did not know that it came from God, he would not thereupon be a Christian, but rather he would be guilty of a Sin, in not using his Reason aright. Reason is that whereby we interpret a Revelation; or else a man can give no reason why he in­terprets it in that manner, rather than in another. And as St. Paul speaks in another Case, Do ye not know that the Saints shall judg the World? &c. Do ye not know that Reason must judg of the Sum of Religion? And if the whole must be judged by it, Is it unworthy to judg in the smallest Matters, such as a Phrase, or a Figure? Shall it not judge in so plain and so easie a Case as this? That Christ's Body on which the Woman poured her Alabaster Box of Ointment, Matth. 26.12. was his living Natural Body; And the Body which Joseph of Arimathea begged and buried, Matth. 27.58. was his dead Natural Body; And the Body of Christ which is to be Edified, Eph. 4.12. is the Church, or Society of all Christian People; And the Body of Christ which is to be eaten, Matth. 26.26. is the Sign, or Sacrament, or Memorial of his Body? If Reason may not judg in this Case, by considering and examining these several Places, but is to be set aside or renounced, and the Letter of Scripture to determine it; Then I am sure, that if the [Page xiv]Communicant, by vertue of those words, This is my Body, eats the Natural Body of Christ either dead or alive, At the same time he also eats up all Christian People by vertue of St. Paul's words, who in like manner expresly calls Them the Body of Christ. In a word, whatsoever is believed or done in Religion, must be by Reason, or else it is an Irrational Belief and Practice. For Reason is the Principle of a Man; and whatsoever is not done by it, is not done by the Man, it is not an Humane Act, but the Act of a Brute. Whenever there­fore I become a Scholar in the School of the Eucharist, and renounce the Reason which God has given me, to em­brace the Romish Doctrine of Transubstantiation, I am fully resolved to keep a decorum in it, and I will cer­tainly go over to that Church upon all Four.

I have not thus much insisted upon Reason, because we are destitute of Scripture-proof, to shew that Transub­stantiation is false; for we have not a clearer and ful­ler evidence from Revelation, that our Saviour came into the World, than we have that his Body, even since his Resurrection, is such, as cannot possibly be present in form of Bread. As to name no more, Luke 24.39. Be­hold my hands and my feet, that it is I my self: han­dle me and see, for a Spirit hath not flesh and bones, as ye see me have. These are the Scripture-marks of our Saviour's Body, which he himself gave on purpose to know it by. But can we possibly behold Hands and Feet in a Wafer? Can we handle and see Flesh and Bones in it? If we cannot, Then it is not He himself; otherwise these are fallacious Marks of him, for roundness and whiteness, and no Hands and Feet, and no Flesh and Bones, might have been the Marks as well. But I was hereby willing to shew, that as Scripture is against [Page xv] Transubstantiation, so the primitive Light of Reason is against it too, the Ʋnwritten as well as the Written Word of God: And that as Transubstantiation tends to the destruction of all that is Man or Christian in us; So on the other hand, Common Sense, Reason, Christia­nity, and all that is within us, does rise up in opposition against so monstrous and mischievous a Doctrine.


TRansubstantiation is not the Name of one single Absurdity, but it signifies as Le­gion does, many Thousands in one. For which reason it is very hard to draw them up, or put them into any good order, which however I shall endeavour to do under these two Heads:

  • First, Of Intellectual Absurdities.
  • And Secondly, Of Practical Absurdities.

1. The first Head is of Intellectual Absurdities; by which I mean such Falshoods as are repugnant to the common Reason and Understanding of Man­kind. And I purposely wave all those Absurdities of Transubstantiation which contradict our Senses, be­cause if a man be bent upon it, and will outface me out of all all my senses, as I cannot believe him, so I [Page 2]cannot disprove him: If he says the Sun does not shine, when at the same time I am really dazled with the light and brightness of it, I can only say as I find, and appeal to his own senses, and desire him to do me right. In case a Romanist should bear me down, that the Bible in my hand is not a Book, but the living Judg of Controversie, Pope Innocent the Eleventh, and all the Bishops of the Christian World sitting together in Council; I can't help my self: especially if he pretend to have chang'd the Book into such, and so many living men by saying some powerfully charming words over it; and fur­ther, if in condescension and compliance with the frailty of human sense, he likewise acknowledges that it looks like a Printed and Bound Book, and is cloath'd with all the Accidents and Properties of a Book, and that one part of the Enchantment lies in this, that tho in all appearance it is a Book, yet it is in reality Pope Innocent the Eleventh, and an Assembly of living Bishops; in this case I can't use my senses, because he has already foreclosed the use and evidence of them. But if he goes on to tell me utter Impossibilities, and after having affirm'd to me that the two Epistles of St. Peter are nothing else but Pope Innocent in person; and that the very same Holy Father (whom I think I have in my hand at London) is also at the self same time personally present at Rome, and at Paris, and at Vienna, and in ten thousand other very remote places; he then puts me into a way to break the Enchantment, and to over­throw his Delusion with such Arguments, as will not be satisfied by saying, That the senses may be de­ceived, and cannot dive into the essence of things.

It is not such a light and ludicrous Cheat as this I have been now speaking of, which the Church of Rome has put upon the World for many Ages toge­ther; for then I question, whether I should ever have employed my Pen against it; (though it is an indig­nity to mankind to impose upon them, to deceive and make children of them) but the Romish delu­sion is of an higher nature, for it is the Cheat of a bit of Bread which you must believe to be a man's body, nay to be a God: And accordingly if you will not worship and bow down to this bit of Bread, and acknowledg it to be your Maker, then shall you be condemned for an Heretick; then will they zealously tell you, That they will no more pray for you, See the Book of Martyrs in Q. Maries Reign.than they will for a Dog; and that as your Body fries in a Smithfield-Fire, so your Soul shall for ever burn in Hell. And therefore it is of as great consequence to men, as their souls and bodies are worth, to know the truth of this matter; for which cause I earnest­ly intreat them to weigh and ponder the Arguments, and carefully to attend to the Demonstrations, which I shall here lay down before them.

To proceed with the more strength and clearness in this matter, and to avoid needless Repetitions, and such like incumbrances of a Discourse, I shall here premise some very reasonable Demands, which without any man's leave I shall take for granted: 1. That a Doctrine which consists of Impossibilities, is an impossible Doctrine. 2. That Omnipotency it self cannot make an Impossibility; for what can­not be done at all, cannot be done by Almighty Pow­er. Supposing an infinite excess of Power, (as we are sure there is in God) yet it cannot do what can­not [Page 4]be done. 3. That a Contradiction is an Im­possibility.

From these Premises I shall infer, That every Con­tradiction which is contained in the Doctrine of Transubstantiation, is an undoubted proof of the Im­possibility of it; so that it never was, is, or can be be true, and that the pretence of Omnipotency it self cannot support it.

1. The first and most obvious Contradictions in it, are those which follow upon asserting, That the self-same Body is in Heaven and Earth, and upon in­numerable far distant Altars at once.


For let A, B, C, be so many different and far di­stant Places, and let D be the same Body in those distant Places, and then you may behold these ma­nifest Contradictions. First, D is in A, and D is not in A, for it is in B, which is not in A. Again, D is wholly in B, and D is wholly out of B, for it is in C, which is wholly out of B. And thus you may ring Changes of endless Contradictions; for still as you multiply these Places, the Contradictions will all along encrease and multiply upon you, till they come to exceed Millions of Millions.

To avoid the force of this and such like Demon­strations, the Representer of Popery tells us, ‘That Christ gives to his Body a supernatural manner of [Page 5]Existence, by which being left without Extension of Parts, and rendred independent of Place, it may be one and the same in many Places at once, and whole in every part of the Symbols, and not obnoxious to any Corporeal Contingencies.’ Thus far he. It may be, a few new-devised terms, and half a dozen Inconsistent Words contradictiously jumbled together, are able to overthrow a Demonstration. We will try whether they can or no. As for the Privileges and Prerogatives of this Body (which it must always be carefully remem­bred is an Organized Human Body) to Exist with­out Extension of Parts, to be whole in every part of the Symbols, and not to be obnoxious to any Cor­poreal Contingencies, they are Mysteries which will keep cold, and we shall consider them by and by. The Thing to be thought of at present, is, A Supernatural manner of Existence, whereby this Body is rendred independent of Place, and may be one and the same in many Places at once.

This Body which exists in a Supernatural man­ner, must either, (1.) Be every where, and in all Places; which manner of Existence is Immense and Infinite, and peculiar to God alone. It is a Di­vine Attribute; and where there is one Divine Attribute, there are all the rest. But if by an Im­possible Supposition, this manner of Existence were Communicable to a Body, yet it would not serve their purpose; for then this Body would be in too many Places at once, in all other Places out of the Sacrament, as well as in it; and so there would be no need of Priests to make Christ's Body in the Sacra­ment, which would be a thing very inconvenient, [Page 2] [...] [Page 3] [...] [Page 4] [...] [Page 5] [...] [Page 6]at least for that Order of Men. Or else (2.) This Body which is Independent of Place, must be in no Place; and then with it's Supernatural manner of Existence, it does not Exist at all; for that which is No-where, is nothing. Or (3dly and lastly) It must be somewhere; for let the manner of Existence be what it will, Natural, or Supernatural, or In­finite, still this Body, which is independent of Place, must either be Every-where, or Some­where, or No-where; if this Body be Every-where, as was shewed before, it would be Infinite, which is Blasphemy; for if a Body may have Divine Attri­butes, and be a God, then God may be a Body. And then again, if this Body be No-where, it is Non-Existent and Nothing. And therefore it remains that it be Some where: And this is easily granted; for it is said to be in many Places at once, which is many Some-wheres. Well, if it may be in many Places at once, it may be in one of those many Places: This is undeniable, and must be granted us. Let us make use therefore once again, of the former Scheme, and let this one Place be A, and D the Body in it; and now at last, though this Body D be independent of Place, yet we are sure of it in one Place, for it is in A. But, it seems, it may be in several other places at the same time: Be it so, and let B and C be two of those other Places, and let D be the self-same independent Body in those Places; and then we are haunted again with all the former Contradictions. D is in A, and at the same time D is not in A, for it is in B, which is not in A. Again, D is wholly in B, and D is wholly out of B at the same time, for it is in C, [Page 7]which is wholly out of B. So that this pretended Supernatural manner of Existence, is full of Con­tradictions, that is to say, it is Impossible. Which was to be Demonstrated.

In this foregoing Demonstration I have taken the word Place in the largest Sense, so as to contain Angels and Spirits, who are Somewhere, and who cannot be Elsewhere at the same time. And this I did on purpose to shew, That though the Body of Christ should be present after the manner of a Spirit, without filling a Place, or having any rela­tion to the Dimensions of it, (which was the old Hypothesis, before the Representer came with his new Jargon); and tho it took up no more room than a Thought does in a Man's Mind, yet it were impossible for it to be in many Places at once. So that if we should grant Matter to be Immaterial, and a Body to be a Spirit, yet the Papists are so intangled in the Absurdity of this Doctrine, that it would do them no good to allow them half a score Contradictions, neither would it any way relieve them, or free them from the rest. Whereas on the other hand, a Body is known to fill and possess the Place in which it is, and is circumscribed by the bounds and limits of the Place, which is commen­surate to the Magnitude and Figure of the Body: So that if a Body should be in many Places at once, it might not only have quite contrary Situations, and be East, West, North, and South of it self, be above it self, and below it self all at once; but also it would be Circumscribed and not Circumscribed at the same time; which is a very plain and open Con­tradiction.

2. The Second Head of Contradictions are those which attend the Doctrine of Transubstantiation in point of Time. Every thing that has now a Being, either always had a Being, and is Eternal; which only God is; or else it had a beginning of its Being, in which it has continued ever since; which is the condition of all Creatures; and this Continuance of a Creature in Being we call the Duration of it, which is so essential to all Substances, whether Ma­terial or Immaterial, that it is absolutely inseparable from them: For when their Being began, their Du­ration began; and when their Duration ceases, their Being ceases. This Duration is counted by Days, Months, and Years, and such like greater or lesser portions of Time, which Time is nothing else but the measure of Duration, whereby we reckon how long a Substance has continued or persevered in Being. And now we have a Test in our hands, to try whether it be not absolutely impossible for the Transubstantiation-Body in the Sacrament to be the very Body of Christ, which was born of the Virgin Mary.

The Body which was born of the Virgin Mary has continued in Being 1688 years; whereas the Bo­dy which the Priest Conficiunt Christi Corpus & Sanguinem Catech. Trid. de Euch ss. 82. Edit. Lugdun. 1676. made yesterday, has conti­nued in Being but one Day; but the Duration of one Day only cannot be the Duration of 1688 years: And the Duration of 1688 years is now in­separable from the Body of Christ born of the Vir­gin Mary, for the Duration of a Substance is insepa­rable from the Substance; therefore the Body which the Priest made yesterday, cannot be the Body which was born of the Virgin Mary. Which was to be Demonstrated.

Again; If the Body in the Sacrament which was made, that is, began to be yesterday, is the same Body which has continued 1688 Years, then the same Body continued 1687 Years, and upwards, before it began to be; but before it began to be, it was not in Being; and consequently, in every Minute during that 1687 years, the same Body was in Being, and was not in Being. Which amounts to Millions of Contradictions.

Once more. It must be granted, That the Cause is in Being before the Effect; and it would be a dou­ble Repugnancy to say the contrary; for then the Effect would be both before its self, for it is not an Effect till it be Caused; and also before its Cause, and so would be Caused by that which is not. Now the Causes of the Transubstantiation-Body are these amongst others. 1. The Bread out of which it is produced; which is so necessary, that this Change cannot be wrought out of any other Substance in the World, Flesh nor Fish, Pillar nor Post, nor any thing else that can be named; and therefore this is the necessary Matter of the Transubstantiation-Body, or the Cause out of which it is made. 2ly, The Baker by whom the Bread was made; for he that is a Cause of the Cause, is a Cause of the thing Cau­sed. 3ly, The Marvellous Operator, the Priest, who makes the Body, together with his Intention. 4ly, Which seems to be an Instrumental Cause, his Pronouncing these words, Hoc enim est Corpus meum, in one Breath. 5ly, The Consideration which moved him to say a Mass at that time.

But neither the Bread, nor the Baker, nor the Priest, nor his Intention, nor his Voice, nor his Breath, nor the Proposal, suppose of Twelve pence, to him to say a Mass; neither all nor any of these, which were the Causes of that Transubstantiation Body, which was made yesterday, and did contribute more or less to the producing of it; I say, none of these Causes were in Being an Hundred years ago; and if the Causes were not in Being, much less was the Effect in Being, otherwise the Effect must be before the Cause, which is impossible. But the Body of Christ, born of the Virgin Mary, was in being 1600 Years ago, which is more than One hundred Years ago, and this is impossible for the Transub­stantiation-Body which was made yesterday; there­fore it is impossible for the Transubstantiation-Body to be the Body of Christ born of the Virgin Mary. Q. E. D.

I wonder, that when the Representer's hand was in, and he had made Christ's Body Independent of Place, he had not likewise made it Independent of Time, for that was full as necessary to be done as the other.

3. The Third Head of Contradictions are those which relate to Quantity; under which Head I was going to Demonstrate, That the same Body cannot at the same time be Bigger and Less than it it self; That it cannot be an Organized Human Body, Five Foot and an half long, and at the same time be stowed within the Compass of a Wafer no bigger than a Six-pence, nay within the compass [Page 11]of every Crumb of that Wafer, though not so big as a Pins-head. But I am interrupted from proceeding any further in this Attempt; for by a wonderful Conveyance, the very Subject-Matter of my Demonstration is taken away; and instead of a Solid Body, with Figure and Dimensions, with different and distinct parts, divisible and measura­ble, they have left me only the Appearance of a Body, which no Demonstration can fasten upon. For they say, That this Body is indued with a Super­natural manner of Existence, by which being left without Extension of Parts, it may be whole in every part of the Symbols, and not obnoxious to any Corpo­real Contingencies. Now tho we cannot demonstrate any Property of such an incomprehensible Body as this is, (no more than we can draw the Picture of a Non-entity, or weigh it in a Pair of Scales) for it scorns and tramples upon all the Principles and Axioms of Euclid; yet we may a little consi­der the Terms of Art by which it is exprest.

1. It is a Body without Extension of Parts. So that it is a whole which has Parts, though those Parts are without Extension; and accordingly as it follows, It may be whole in every Part of the Symbols. But if the Parts be without Extension, so is the Whole, for the Whole is nothing else but all the Parts put together. Now at this rate, a Part is as big as the Whole, and has as much Ex­tension, because either of them has none at all. Is this indeed the Body which the Wonder-working Priest produces! A Body without Extension is a mere Nothing, and a perfect Contradicti­on [Page 12]in Terms; for Extension is the very Essence of a Body, and the Foundation of all the other Pro­perties that are in it; the 3 Dimensions, as also Fi­gure, Divisibility, and Impenetrability, do all flow from it. Again; so much as you add to the Quan­tity of a Body, so much you add to the Substance; and so much of the Extension as you take away, just so much of the Substance goes along with it. In a word, Body and Extension are Reciprocal, for every Body is an extended Substance, and every extended Substance is a Body; so that they are but different Names for the same thing.

2. This Body is whole in every part of the Sym­bols, that is, of the Elements of Bread and Wine. But the Bread has, suppose, an Hundred distinct Parts, one of which is not the other, and therefore this Body being Whole in every distinct Part, has an Hundred distinct Wholes, one of which is not the other, and yet is but One Body all the while, which, as I take it, is Contradiction by whole­sale.

3. This Body is not Obnoxious to any Corporeal Contingencies. If it be a Body, what may happen to one Body, may happen to another. To use Terence's words in this case, Homo sum nihil Hu­manum a me alienum puto: I am a Man, and what is incident to a Man, is incident to me. And so if a Body could speak, it would say, Corpus sum nihil corporeum a me alienum puto; I am a Body, and what belongs to a Body, belongs to me. What­ever Body is subject to be eaten, is subject to be [Page 13]pressed and grinded with the Teeth, to be swal­lowed down, and afterwards voided; and I sup­pose this last Clause was added on purpose to avoid such Inconveniencies, and to save the Ho­nour of this Body, which they call God's Body: But in my Opinion it was a needless Clause, for a Body without Extension can never take hurt, nor come to any damage at all. For a man may bite till his Jaws ake, and grind all his Teeth out of his Head, before he can fasten upon that whichis not, and which never yet had any Existence in the world, save in a parcel of insignificant words ill put together on purpose to amuse unwary people.

It is an endless thing to encounter shadows, and to oppose these manifest Impossibilities, which are so contrary to the Reason of Mankind, that the Papists themselves own they would not hold them, were it not for the sake of Revelation: which is to be believed, they say, before Reason, and ought to outweigh all other Reasons. They are over-ruled, they say, in this case, by the express words of our Saviour, who in the same night in which he was Betrayed, took Bread, and said, Take, Eat, This is my Body, do this in Remembrance of me; And who has all Power in Heaven and Earth to make his words good. We allow these words to be our Sa­viour's, neither do we question his Power, but con­clude, That he accomplished all that he intended, and did make the Bread his Body in that sense in which he meant it should be. So far we are agreed on both sides. The Question therefore in short is [Page 14]this, What he did to the Bread, when he said, This is my Body? Whether he Metamorphosed and chan­ged the nature of it? or only altered the use of it, that it might be a Token of his Body, and serve to remember him by, to all those excellent purposes of Religion which we acknowledg to be design'd by him.

This latter is undoubtedly the true sense, consi­dering all the circumstances of the place. As (1st.) considering that our Saviour was upon his Depar­ture, at which time men use to leave Memorials of themselves with their Friends, to be Remembred by in their Absence. (2ly.) Considering that the frequent use of the word Is, imports no more than Signifies. As in very many Places, where the Scri­pture says one thing is another, it means only that that thing must be Expounded by the Other, it sig­nifies or stands for the other: And consequently, This is my Body, i. e. This signifies my Body, is the Literal sense. And (3ly,) considering that Clause which shews the end and meaning of this whole passage, and is the very Key to unlock it, Do this in Remembrance of me. For it is an absurd speech to say, Take my Body in Remembrance of my Body; Take me for a Token to Remember me by. So that if there were not one Contradiction or Impossibili­ty, or any such Rock to be shunned in the Doctrine of Transubstantiation, yet every thing in the Text leads us into this sense, which I have now deliver­ed; We are plainly determined to this sense, by rea­sons taken out of the very bowels of the Text; the Text expounds its self.

But still the Papists are very urgent and pressing upon us, and say, That unless we believe the Bread to be changed into Christ's Real and Natural Body, when he says it Is his Body, we make him a Lyar. Take heed of that. For our Saviour calls many things by the name of those things into which they never were substantially changed. He called his Body a Temple, when he said, Destroy this Temple, and in three days I will rear it up: And yet his Body was never substantially changed into a Pile of Building. And so likewise when that Temple was in destroy­ing, and our Blessed Redeemer was hanging upon the Cross, we have a marvellous tender passage of his dutiful care to provide for his Mother, when he was in the extremity of his sufferings, Joh. 19.26, 27. seeing his Mother and his Disciple John standing together by the Cross, he said to her, Wo­man, behold thy Son. Which was equivalent to this Proposition, That Man is thy Son. And he said to John, Behold thy Mother; wherein he calls the Vir­gin Mary John's Mother, which she was not. But upon this John took her for his Mother, and carried her home to his own House. And so in this present case, This is my Body. Look not upon this as com­mon Bread, for it stands for my Body; consider it under that notion, and remember me by it. Behold thy Mother: Repute her as such. But if it be a Re­flection upon our Saviour to say that it is Bread, when he calls it his Body, is it not the same Reflecti­on upon Saint Paul to say, That it is not Bread, when he calls it Bread three or four times over? 1 Cor. 11.

No, no, it was not Scripture which led the Papists into the Doctrine of Transubstantiation; but by en­gaging themselves in the defence of Image worship, they were betrayed into it; and were driven to take shelter and sanctuary in it, to avoid the force of an Argument which they could not otherwise answer. Every body knows, that when Image-worship was first set up, there was a great number of Christians who stoutly opposed it, and gathered Councils to condemn it; and these went by the name of Image-Breakers. On the other side the Image worshippers were furiously bent upon it, and gathered Councils to maintain it, particularly that famous one of Blessed Memory, the second Nicene Council. In these Oppositions and Disputes, one Argument which the Image-breakers made use of in Reference to the Images of our Saviour, was this. If our Sa­viour has left one Image of himself, which is of Di­vine Institution, then it is not lawful to erect other Images of him which are of humane invention; But he has left one Image of himself, (namely in the Sacrament) which is of Divine Institution, Ergo. To make it good, That the Sacrament was an Image of our Saviour of his own Appointment, they shew that all the Ancient Fathers had called it the Image, the Figure, the Type, the Antitype, the Resem­blance or Representation of our Saviour. This very Argument was used by the preceding Council at Constantinople, and is recited by the Nicene Council, which was presently after. But how does the Nicene Council answer it? They could not deny the Major Proposition, and therefore they were forced to break through the Minor after this fashion: They say [Page 17]that the Sacrament is not the Image, Resemblance, Figure, Type, Antitype of our Saviour, but his own Body; for he himself expresly says, Hoc est corpus meum. It is not therefore an Image or Figure of him, but it is he himself in Person. And thus they rescued and disengaged themselves from a very close and distressing Argument, and so their show of Image­worship went on.

This is the first time that the Literal Interpre­tation, as they call it, of Hoc est corpus meum, is to be met with, which it is plain likewise the for­mer Council was not aware of; for if they could have foreseen so full and so ready an Answer, com­mon sense would never have suffered them to make use of that Argument. Now after the Literal In­terpretation was thus broached to serve a present turn, and they had used it as a man does the next thing that comes to hand to stop a gap, it was yet a long time before Transubstantiation was im­posed as a Doctrine of Faith: It had done good service in solving an Argument, and the Image-Breakers were all broken and destroyed themselves, and therefore there was no further occasion for it. But in process of time they could not but disco­ver many other advantages in it; as, amongst the rest, That it would deck the Priesthood with the highest honour in the world, and advance them above all Thrones and Crowned Heads, if it were once believed that they could make their Maker when they pleased. And therefore it is no wonder that they were so very sharp upon Berengarius, when he set himself to oppose it. And from that [Page 18]time forwards they were forming this Doctrine into shape, and at last, four hundred and odd years after the first invention of it, it was made an Article of Faith in the Great Lateran Council, and Christened by the name of Transubstantiation. This was done by a good Token in King John's time, when the Pope made himself Landlord of the Realm of England, and put it under a servile Tribute, which lasted for several Kings Reigns. Thus you see the Rise of Transubstantiation, which came not into the world by the Papists sticking close to the Scripture, but by their cleaving to the Idolatry of Image-worship; whereby they are faln, according to David's imprecation, from one wickedness to another.

But what we call an Idol, that they say is God's Body, which they affirm to be the plain and literal sense of those words, This is my Body; let us therefore see at last what their Literal Expo­sition is. Now it runs after this manner. This which I now give you to eat was lately Bread, but I have changed the substance of the Bread into the self-same Body with which I now deliver it to you: I tell you the late Bread is I my self, it is mine own Body. Catech. Trid. de Euch. Sect. 31. For in that which you now have in your hands, assure your selves there is whole Christ; I am there Body and Soul, yea, and my Divinity is there also: So that there is contained under the appearance of that bit of Bread, my Divine Nature, and my whole Hu­mane Nature which consists of my Soul, and all the parts of my Body, together with my Blood. [Page 19]My true real Natural Body which was born of the Virgin Mary is there, together with whatsoever belongs to a true Humane Body, as Bones and Sinews, You will say that notwithstanding all that I have said, it appears to be Bread still. That is true; for though the substance of the Bread be gone, yet the figure, colour, smell, taste, and all the other Qualities and Conditions of the Bread remain, and Sect. 44. Ipsa se, nulla alia re nisa substentant. hang by Geometry. Sect. 46. Nam cum a Com­muni Homi­num naturâ maximè ab­horreat Hu­manae carnis esca, &c. And this I have most wisely ordered: For these Acci­dents of Bread disguise my Body, That it may the better go down, and that you may not be filled with horror at the eating of Man's flesh, which humane nature detests. And then besides, what would the Infidel world say, if they saw you de­vouring your Lord, and eating him up in his own shape? And lastly, this way of Receiving of my Body, the more remote it is from your sen­ses, the better it is for the improvement of your Faith, and will make it the more Meritorious. But you will wonder, especially now I am by in Person, and you have an opportunity of compa­ring this one same Body together, how this large Body which you see is at least five Foot and a half long, and of a proportionable bulk, can be contained at the same time within the compass of a small crumb of Bread, without any Alteration at all; for it is the self same body within the Sacrament, as it is without. Now you may soon be satisfied in that Point. Sect. 43▪ For as I am now sitting at Table, I am in the condition of other bodies which are in a place, which are always endued with Magnitude; but the other same I [Page 20]which am in the Sacrament, am not as in a place, but I am there as a substance, and under that notion I am neither big nor little, for that be­longs to Quantity, which is in another Predica­ment. For the substance of the Bread is turned into my substance, not into my Magnitude or Quantity. Now no body doubts but a substance may be contained in a little room as well as in a great. For both the substance of Air, and its whole Nature, must be alike in a small portion of Air as in a greater, as also the whole nature of Water no less in a small Pitcher, than in a River. Seeing therefore that my Body succeeds and comes in the place of the substance of the bread, you must acknowledg, That my Body is in the Sacrament plainly after the same manner, as the substance of the bread was before the Consecra­tion. But to say, whether the substance of the bread was under a greater bulk, or under a less, was nothing at all to the thing.

Now this Exposition of these words, This is my Body, is an Authentick and Infallible Exposition, for it is the very Interpretation of them which the Romish Church delivers to all her Parish Priests in the Trent-Catechism, which was written on pur­pose for their instruction; so that I have taken it from the Fountain head, and have it at the first hand. This they say is the meaning of those words of our Saviour, This is my Body; and there­fore they make our Saviour to say all this: which is such a sense of his words, as any considerate Christian would sooner die, than put it upon them.

Is this the Literal Sense, and proper Meaning of an Organized Human Body, That it has no Mag­nitude, and is neither Little nor Big? That it is a Solid, Massy Bulk, consisting of Flesh and Blood, Bones and Sinews, and yet can be perceived by no Sense; can neither be seen, felt, nor under­stood, but only Believed? That it has a Head, Trunk, and Four large Limbs, which may all be contained in the compass of a Pins-head; which, according to the Letter, will not hold the Fourth part of a Little-finger Nail? Methinks these are all strange Figures, and the most harsh Abuses of Speech imaginable. At this rate, the Literal Sense of East, is West, and the Literal Sense of Noon­day is Midnight. The Private Spirit never made such Expositions as these, neither would any man alive receive them, if he were not first Practis'd upon, and his Belief widened for that Purpose. We have an Instance of these Preparatory Arts in the 42d Section, where the Pastors are charged if they cannot otherwise avoid discoursing of these Matters, To remember in the first place that they fore­arm the minds of the Faithful, with that saying, Luke 1.37. For with God nothing shall be Impossible. This is neither better nor worse than one of their Pious Frauds; for I am sure they know, that this Scripture is very deceitfully applied to the Case of Transubstantiation. The Virgin Mary scrupled the Possibility of her being a Mother when she knew not a Man, and asked, How this thing could be? Upon this the Angel told her, That the most High would employ his Power in it, and bring it to pass in an extraordinary way, to whom nothing was [Page 22]Impossible: And the Omnipotence of God was a just ground of her Belief upon this occasion, who very well knew, That as God had made the First Adam, so if he pleased he could make the Second, without the Concurrence of either Man or Wo­man; and as he had formed Eve of her Hus­band's Rib, so he could make the Messiah of the Substance of his Mother. So that tho this was beside the common Course of Nature, yet God was not tyed to that; for what he had done, he might do again. But what Argument is this to induce the belief of Transubstantiation, which involves ma­nifold Contradictions, which the Papists them­selves acknowledg do not fall under the Divine Power? They themselves know full well that the Scripture says, It is Impossible for God to Lye, to whom nothing is Impossible; and he who can do all things, cannot deny himself, because these are Con­tradictions to his own Being. And for the like reason they know that he cannot make a Contra­diction in any kind, because a Contradiction de­stroys it self, it has within it self an utter Repug­nance to Being. To make a Thing to be, and not to be, at the same time, is such an Inconsistency, that one part of it overthrows the other; and there­fore it is no Act of Possibillty, but is an utter Im­possibility, which is the Contradiction of all Power, even of that which is Infinite. Methinks St. Au­stin very well lays open the Reason, why an Al­mighty Power cannot make a Contradiction. Contra Faustum l. 26. c. 5. Quisquis dicit, si Omnipo­tens est Deus, faciat ut quae facta sunt facta non fuerint, non videt hoc se dicere, si Omnipotens est, faciat ut ea [Page 23]quae vera sunt, eo ipso quo vera sunt, falsa sint. Who­soever says, If God be Almighty, let him make those things which have been Done, never to have been Done, does not see that he says this in other words, If he be Almighty, let him make the things which are True, to be False, even wherein they are True. So that the Angel does not tell us in this Text, That the Doctrine of Transubstantia­tion shall not be Impossible with God; he does not tell us that God can make a Heap of Contradi­ctions: No, for if all the Angels of Heaven (ac­cording to St. Austin's Expression) should say, That a Thing may be False, even wherein it is True; so may what they say be, and consequently there is no believing of them, nor indeed of any Being in the World upon those Terms. We are able there­fore to bring their Expositions of Scripture upon this occasion, to this Infallible Test. If they con­contain in them things Contradictious and Im­possible, then they are not the True Sense and Meaning of that Revelation which came from God, for if he cannot Do an Impossibility, neither can he Say it.

And just such as their Divinity Expositions are, so deceitful are their Philosophical Illustrations: As particularly, when they shew, how the whole Body of Christ may be in the least Particle, or Crumbling of the Bread, by the Two Instances of Air and Water. Their words are these, Sect. 43. ‘The Substance of Bread is turned into the Sub­stance of Christ, not into his Magnitude or Quantity. Now no body doubts but a Sub­stance [Page 24]may be contained in a little room as well as in a great. For both the Substance of Air, and its whole Nature, must be alike in a small portion of Air, as in a greater; as also the whole Nature of Water, no less in a small Pitcher­ful, than in a River.’ In these words there are no less than two Egregious Fallacies. For, 1. Their Instances are of Homogeneous or Si­milar Bodies, that is, such Bodies whose Parts are all Alike, and which have the same Name and Nature; so every Part of Air is Air, and every drop of Water is Water, and has the whole Nature of Water in it, as well as that Aggregate body of it, which is in the Ocean: But these Instances are very deceitfully applied to an Heterogeneous Dissimilar Organized Body, as a Human Body is, which consists of Parts altogether Unlike, and of Different Names and Natures. For Bone is not Flesh, nor either of them Blood, nor any of them Brain. The Thumb nail has not the whole Nature of the Eye, nor the Skull of the Cawl: The Hand is not the Heart, nor the Head the Foot. And as these Parts are of Different Natures, so there is a Necessity of their keeping a considera­ble Distance in their Situation, because there are many Essential Parts of the body interposed be­twixt them, which would otherwise be swallow­ed up.

But 2ly, Suppose an Human Body were no Com­pound, but as pure Element as Air or Water, yet the same Substance could not be contained in a less room as well as in a greater. For the Air which [Page 25]is contained in a Bubble, is indeed a Substance of Air, but it is not the same Substance of Air as fills a Chamber, for it is not the Hundredth part of that Substance. Nor is a Spoonful of Water the same Substance with an Hogshead of Water; for an Hogshead of Water cannot be contained in a Spoon, but is at least a Thousand Spoon­fuls: And in common Arithmetick, Units are not the same with Thousands. So that when they bring Air and Water to prove that the same Substance may be contained in a little room, as well as in a greater, their Proofs seem to partake of the Nature of those Two Elements, for they are as Light as the one, and as Weak as the other.

This tedious Digression, which has proceeded to an unexpected length, has not been wholly Un­profitable; for I have again recovered Materials out of the Infallible Exposition it self, to furnish my intended Demonstration, which I shall now re-assume. In the 31st Section we are told, That the Real Body of Christ is in the Sacrament, and whatsoever belongs to the Nature of a Body, as Bones and Sinews: And that All the Parts of the Body are contained in it; and in the smallest Crumb of it, Sect. 42. From whence I gather, That if All the Parts of the Body are contained in the smallest Crumb, then the Hand is, which is [...] of the Parts of the Body; and if the whole Hand, then all the Fingers and Thumb, for they are Parts of the Hand, which is Part of the Body; and for the same reason if all the fingers, then all the joynts of those fingers. Now I want but One [Page 26]joynt of any one Finger to manifest the Contra­dictions and Absurdities of this Doctrine; nay, the Bone in the first joynt of the fore-finger will serve the Turn. Now a Bone is a solid firm hard Substance, which as to its Use serves to strengthen the fabrick of the Body. And if it have not these Properties, it is not a Bone, it is not the thing we speak of; for a fluid loose or soft Substance is not a Bone, neither will it serve for the above mentio­ned Use in the Body. Having therefore these Pro­perties, it consists of Parts Extended Impenetra­ble and firmly joined together, so that they can­not be separated without great force, and conse­quently they resist the Touch, and feel Hard. Be­sides, this Bone in particular is of a Cylindrical Figure, an Inch long, and as much in compass round about. Now if any of the Parts of this Bone be Diminished, then All the Parts of the Body are not there, for the Parts of this Bone which are Parts of the Body, are not there: And if the Parts be Altered, the Nature of the Thing is destroyed, and it is not a Bone.

So that with much ado we have gained a Bone Entire, of an Inch in Magnitude, which according to the Infallible Doctrine is contained in a Crumb of the Sacrament of the Compass of a Pins-head. Now the Fortieth Part of this Bone is equal to that Crumb, as is manifest either by applying them to one another, or by their filling the same Place; but the Crumb is Greater than the whole Bone, for it Contains it, and therefore the Fortieth Part of the Bone is Greater than the whole Bone, [Page 27]which is Impossible. So that the whole Bone cannot Possibly be Contained in that Crumb, but yet it is Contained in it, which is a plain Contra­diction. Q. E. D.

Corollary. Now if that Bone cannot be Con­tained in such a Crumb of the Sacrament, much less can the whole Body, for that Bone is not the Five hundredth Part of the Whole Body: Which we have proved, by the Hypothesis, to be there Full and Entire, and in its Just Dimensions; because All the Parts of the Body are there, and conse­quently Every Part of Every Member of the Bo­dy, which make up the Integrity of the whole. So that we have here at Once about Twenty Thou­sand Contradictions, that is to say, so many Impos­sibilities.

Again, This is an Everlasting Truth, Those things which are Equal to One and the same thing, are Equal to one another: Insomuch that all the Syllogisms and Demonstrations in the World are in a manner built upon this Axiome: And who­ever gainsays it, must assert one of these Two Things, Either that One and the Same thing is not the Same; Or else that what is Equal, is not Equal at the same time. Now a Body of Five Foot and an half long, and One Foot Diameter, is equal to the Natural Body of Christ; but a Crumb of Bread less than a Pins-head is equal to the self-same Natural Body of Christ, for a Crumb of Bread as big as a Pins-head is bigger than the Natural Body of Christ, and Contains it, there­fore [Page 28]a Crumb of Bread less than a Pins-head, is equal to a Body of Five Foot and an half long, and One Foot Diameter.

Furthermore, by another Undeniable Maxim, which says, If of Equal things you take as much from the One as from the Other, the Remainders shall be Equal, Let us take the Quantity of a Pins-head from the Body of Five Foot and an half long, and there remains a Body of Five Foot, Five Inches, and Two Barley Corns, and somewhat better: Let us likewise take the same Quantity of a Pins-head from the Crumb of Bread which is less than a Pins-head, and there remains Transub­stantiation, that is to say, something Worse and Less than Nothing. Nevertheless, because they are the Equal Remainders of Equal Bodies, as much having been taken away from the one as from the other, I say that the Remainder of the Crumb is Equal to the Remainder of the Body of Five Foot and an half long, which is clearly Impossible. Q. E. D.

In this last Demonstration, for dispatch sake, I have been forced to do as the Papists do, and to lay Contradictions and Impossibilities upon Heaps, because I hasten to proceed to other Heads: Only I must stay to Demonstrate some Gross Contradi­ctions, which may be referred either to this Head of Quantity, or to the former of Place.

Supposing Christ's Natural Body to be five Foot and an half long, and one Foot Diameter, [Page 29]if the self-same body be in another place at the same time, where ever it is, the self-same body must have the self-same Dimensions, as we have already proved; and consequently if it be in four several places at once, Coroll. 1. it is but five Foot and an half long, and at the same time it is four times five Foot and an half long, which is two and twenty Foot long: And so likewise it is but one Foot Diameter, and at the same time it is four times one Foot Diameter, which is two Foot Diameter. And by the vast number of Places in which the Papists have bestowed it, it will be but five Foot and an half long, and one Foot Diameter, and at the same time it will be as big as Mount Atlas, or Pen Men Maur, or the Pic of Tenariff.

4. The fourth Head of Contradictions are those which relate to Number, in spight of which the Papists make ten thousand several bodies to be but one and the same body. Now as we have already proved it to be impossible for one and the same body to be in several distant Pla­ces, so we shall here demonstrate that it is equally impossible for what is in several distant Places to be one and the same body.

The Unity of a body consists in this, That it be undivided from it self, and divided from [...] other Bodies; so that if a body be an Individual body, that is to say one and the same, it must be undivided from it self, Now if Christ's body in the Pix at Limestreet be the same Individual [Page 30]body which is in the Pix at St. James's, or at Posnanie in the Higher Poland, then the self-same Individual body is both undivided from it self, and divided from it self. For in the former case the same Individual body is divided from it self not only by two Trent. Cat. de Euch. Sect. 30. Admira­bili Integu­mento. Wonderful Coverlets of the Acci­dents of bread, and by the less wonderful Covers of two Pixes, but also by the greatest part of two great Cities London and Westminster. And in the latter case of Posnanie in Poland, it is di­vided from it self by vast Tracts of Land, and a very wide Sea; so that the self-same individual body is undivided from it self, and yet at the same time is divided from it self, which is impossible. Q. E. D.

On the other hand, There is not any thing which more Infallibly proves a real distinction betwixt Substances, and shews that they are di­vers, and that the one is not the other, than this, That the one can be without the other, and that they can exist separately and apart. Now Christ's body at Limestreet in London, and Christ's body at Pos­nanie in Poland do exist separately and apart, for it is a long and weary Pilgrimage to go from one to the other: And the one can be without the other, for that body at Posnanie was many years without the other, and had raised thirty six Per­sons from the Dead long before the body at Lime­street was made. And therefore these are distinct and divers Bodies, that is to say, they are not the same Body; And yet they are the same Body, which is impossible. Which was to be Demonstra­ted.

Corollary. It is to be supposed that when Anti-Christ comes with Lying Wonders, no body will be so Unmannerly as to call them Lying Wonders, and therefore we shall not Question the Truth of any one of those Miracles which are in the School of the Eucharist Transla­ted into Eng­lish, and Prin­ted at London 1687.: Only thus much we gather from the Former Demonstration, That the good Example of the Birds, School of the Eucharist, pag. 2, 4, 7, 8, 19, &c. Beasts and Vermin, which worshipped Gods Body in other Ages and Countries, is wholly Useless to us. For the Gods Body which is at Limestreet, and St. James's, or any where here­abouts to be had, is not the same Gods Body which those Devout Creatures meekly Worshipped, and which the Stubborn Black Horse Preface to the School of the Eucha­rist, pag. 22. was forced to Worship with one Knee; and therefore we are not in a capacity of Worshipping the same Gods Body, if we would.

5. The next Head of Contradictions is of those that arise from the consideration of that space or Distance which is betwixt one body and another, which is always measured by a straight Line drawn from a point of the one body, to a point of the other body; which is the shortest Line that can be drawn betwixt them, and consequent­ly there can be but one straight line drawn be­twixt the same Terms, which measures and de­scribes the just distance of them. Now we are al­lowed to draw a straight Line from any one Point to another.

We will therefore draw a straight Line from a Point of Christ's Body [Page 32]


at St. James's A, which shall touch the self-same Point of the same Body at Wildhouse B, and be continued to a Point of the Monument in Fish­street C. Now I say, That the Line B C, and the Line A B C are one and the same Line, because each of them is a straight Line drawn betwixt the self-same Terms, which can be but only one straight Line, and therefore the Line B C, and the Line A B C being one and the same Line, are equal; but the Line B C is only a part of the Line A B C, and consequently a part is equal to the whole, which is impossible. So likewise the Di­stance from the Monument to Wildhouse, and the Distance from the Monument to St. James's House is all one, though St. James's be half a mile far­ther off from it than the other, which is impossi­ble. Q. E. D.

Corollary. From the same Demonstration it fol­lows that St. Peter's in Rome, Corpus Christi Church at Posnanie in Poland, and other the remotest pla­ces [Page 33]in the world where God's Body is, are as near Neighbours to the Monument in Fishstreet as the very Mass-house in Limestreet is. And there is like­wise an infinite variety of other Contradictions, which would result from drawing but half a score right Lines from God's Body which is in so many several Quarters, which should all meet together in the Point C. which, as the meanest Mathema­tician easily understands, would not only confound all Distances, but also overthrow all the Everlasting Principles of Geometry.

6. The Sixth Head of Contradictions is in refe­rence to Quality, whereby a Thing is rendred Like or Unlike to another. Now the self-same Body of Christ, by the Doctrine of Transubstantiation has quite contrary Qualities, and is Like and Un­like to it self at the same time. For in Heaven it is in Form of an Human Body, and in Earth it is in Form of Bread. And so again upon Earth, it has a Light about it like a Pillar of Fire which reaches up to Heaven, and it has not such a Light about it at the same time. It is stabbed by a Jew, and is Red with Blood, and at the same time the same Body has no Redness nor Mark of Blood upon it. It is marked with a Crucifix, and at the same time it is not marked with a Crucifix, but with I H S and a Glory. Now these are mani­fest Contradictions, for the self-same thing is af­firmed and denied of the self-same Body at the self-same time.

But before I proceed to Demonstrate the Con­tradictions [Page 34]and Impossibilities which fall under this Head, lest I should lose all my pains in so doing, it will be fit to consider a shuffling Answer which the Papists have invented to rid their hands of all Contradictions of this kind. It is in these words, A Body in two Places is Equivalent to Two Bodies, and therefore one may say of it the most Opposite things without Contradiction. It seems this is no new Answer, but I confess it was New to me; for I first met with it in the late Six Conferences con­cerning the Eucharist, p. 89. where that very Lear­ned and Judicious Author has answered it, and sent it home again with such Arguments ad Hominem, as would close the Mouths of any body but Papists. But because it now also lies just cross my way, I ought likewise to say something to it.

1st, Therefore I say, That the Supposition of One Body in Two Places at once, is an utter Im­possibility; which I have already Demonstrated over and over again, both under the 1st Head of Place, and also under the 4th Head of Number. 2ly, One Body Equivalent to Two, that is, One Body which to all Intents and Purposes is Two, is a Contradi­ction in Terms; for at this rate One and One is Three, and Three and One is Five, and in short, there is a full end of all Arithmetick. 3ly, It is not One Body in Two Places which will serve their turn, but it must be One Body in Ten Thou­sand Places. For it must be One Body in form of Flesh, and the same Body in form of New Bread, and the same Body in form of Old Bread, and the same Body in form of Sweet Wine, and the [Page 35]same Body in form of Sowre Wine, and the same Body at Limestreet, at Rome, at Avignion, and in a word, in all Places, where a bit of Bread, a Mass Priest, and a Slate are to be found together. And this, as I have already shewn, draws after it Millions of Millions of Contradictions. 4thly, I say, That even the Impossible Supposition of One Body in several Places, does plainly deny all Diffe­rence and Dissimilitude in that Body; it allows indeed a Multiplication of the same Body, but it perfectly excludes any Alteration of it: For if it be Altered, it is not the Body which was supposed to be Multiplied. For instance, I will suppose the same Pint of Milk to be in several Places, but then it must be a Pint of Milk in all those Places. For I cannot say, without Contradiction, That the same Pint of Milk in another Place is neither Pint, Half pint, nor Spoonful, but perhaps an unper­ceivable Drop, for then it is a Pint and not a Pint. And so likewise I cannot say, That it is a Pint of Milk in this Place in the form of Milk, and in ano­ther Place it is a Pint of Milk in form of Aqua vitae, having the Smell, Taste, Colour and Vir­tues of Aqua vitae: In another Place it is a Pint of Milk in the form of a Pen-full of Ink: And in another Place it is a Pint of Milk in the form of a Bandelier full of Gunpowder. For in these cases it is so Altered that it is not Milk, it is not the Thing we spoke of, and which we supposed to be Multi­plied: And at the same time though it be neither Milk nor Measure, yet in the way of Transub­stantiation it is still a very good Pint of Milk. These Men had bettet let their Contradictions [Page 36]alone, than offer to assoil them, for the Doctrine of Transubstantiation is perfectly of the nature of Birdlime, the more they stir and flutter in it, the faster they are caught.

So that this sorry Evasion being of the same piece with Transubstantiation it self, or rather an aggravation of Contradiction, I shall set it aside as if it had never been, and proceed to my intended Demonstration.

We have not in our Minds a clearer and brighter first Principle than this is, That nothing can be Pre­sent and Absent from the same Subject at the same time. Now the Mark of I H S is Present to Christs Body being imprinted upon it, and at the same time it is Absent from the self-same Body, having instead of I H S a Crucifix upon it, and therefore the Mark of I H S is Present to Christs Body, and Absent from the self-same Body at the same time, which is Impossible. Q. E. D.

Again, Gods Body in Form of Bread is not Gods Body in Form of Wine; for if it were, then the Form of Bread, and the Form of Wine would be the same; Wine would be Bread, and Bread would be Wine, that is to say, Bread would be Not Bread. But according to the Papists, Gods Body in Form of Bread, is Gods Body in Form of Wine, that is to say, Bread is not Bread, which is Impossible. Which was to be Demonstrated.

7. The last Head of Contradictions arise from this part of the Doctrine of Transubstantiation, which says, ‘That when the Substances of Bread and Wine are abolished, and wholly cease to Be, still all the Accidents of Bread and Wine are seen to Remain without any Subject at all. For the Substances of Bread and Wine are departed and gone, and these Accidents cannot cleave and be united to the Body and Blood of Christ, and therefore it remains, That in a Supernatural way they must subsist of themselves.’ This is their own Infallible Doctrine, Trid. Catech. de Euch. Sect. 25. & 44. In which few words there is plenty of Contradictions.

For (1st,) I shall Demonstrate, That Accidents subsisting without a Subject, are Substances, that is to say, are not Accidents. And because the Papists themselves are sensible how Absurd and Impossible this Doctrine of theirs is, therefore they fly to Mi­racle and Omnipotency, which is no Refuge nor Sanctuary for Contradictions and Impossibilities, as we have already shewn.

Now the very Essence of an Accident is to subsist in a Subject, and the Essence of a Substance is to sub­sist of it self without a Subject; so that if God by his Omnipotency should make an Accident to subsist of it self without a Subject, he would give one and the same single Thing Two contrary Natures: Whereby the same thing would be what it is, and would not be what it is; it would subsist in a Sub­ject, [Page 38]and not subsist in a Subject at the same time, which is Impossible. Q. E. D.

I have been beholden to the great Philosopher Des Cartes, a Man of their own Communion, for this Demonstration, and have gathered it out of his Answer to the Fourth and Sixth Objections which were made against his Meditations, and out of his Notes upon the Programma, of Regius as I suppose. And it has been heretofore no small diversion to me to see how the Papists stood on Tiptoe, when that great Restorer of Natural Knowledg appeared, ex­pecting whether his New Philosophy would favour their Old Transubstantiation. But when they found that he was not a Man for Substantial Accidents, and such kind of Contradictious Stuff, Dr. Arnault of the Sorbonne, puts it home to him in the Fourth Objections, and tells him, That according to his Philosophy, the Doctrine of the Church concerning the Sacrament of the Altar could not remain safe and sound; because it is of Faith, That the Acci­dents in the Sacrament remain without a Subject; whereas Monsieur Cartes seemed to hold, (for he had not as yet spoke out, nor expressed himself ful­ly in that matter), That Accidents are Insepara­ble from a Subject, and that a Body, and the Asse­ctions of that Body could not subsist apart, nor be made to Exist separately by an Infinite Power. Wherefore Monsieur Arnauld prays him to take great care, lest that while he is proving a God, and the Immortality of the Soul, he should endanger that Faith by which himself hoped to be saved.

Here Cartes was beset, and forced to declare him­self, and therefore was put upon his Invention, which was first to contrive a way of solving the Appearan­ces of Bread and Wine which are in the Sacrament, by a New Hypothesis of the Superficies; which he told them he should more fully make out in his Phy­sics: And when he had thus first entertained them with a new Hypothesis, then he shews them what Impossible Absurdities Real Accidents are, and how full of Repugnancy and Contradictions; and that these Contradictions made men Dissenters from the Church of Rome. And then he concludes, That he hoped the Time would come, when the Divines of that Church would hiss the Doctrine of Real Ac­cidents out of the world, as an Unreasonable, In­comprehensible, and Unsafe Doctrine to be Believed; and that his Superficies would be embraced instead of it, as Certain and Indubitable. Monsieur Arnault was a Man of sense, and therefore I doubt not but he let fall his Ears at this Answer. And the Paris Di­vines sent Cartes word afterwards in their sixth Ob­jections, Scruple the 7th, That they did not under­stand his Superficies, and knew not what to make of it: And that tho he put them in hope that he would make things plainer in his Physics, yet they were in­clined to Believe they should never part with their old Opinion concerning Accidents, for his new one.

But tho they were of this mind, yet we find a very considerable Person, Epist. Vol. 2. Epis. 3. who had better thoughts of it, and says, That he had happily shewn how the Inseparableness of Accidents [Page 40]from a Substance, might be consistent with the Sa­crament of the Altar; but then he desires to know of Cartes, whether he had bethought himself of a way to Reconcile another part of his Philosophy with Christs Body, being without Local Extension upon the Altar, for otherwise he would expose to great Peril the most sacred thing in the world. Upon this Cartes stops short, and does not care to give any thing more concerning the Sacrament under his hand, but offers to meet him if he pleases, and to tell him his Conjectures by word of mouth, ibid Epist. 4.

And was not this a pleasant way of proceeding? Which is in effect as if they had said, Sir, You are a great Philosopher of our own Church, you know we hold the Doctrine of Transubstantiation, and you your self hope to be saved by it; see there­fore what can be done for it, pray make it as rea­sonable as you can. It is too like the Comical Story of the Woman, who after she had eaten Pig in Smith­field, went to Rabbi Buisy, and prays him to make the eating of Pig as lawful as he can. And is it not likewise a neat turn to quiet them with his Doctrine of the Superficies?

Now the Superficies is much such another Ratio­nale of Transubstantiation, as the following Ar­gument is a proof of Purgatory. If there be one whose words are recorded in Scripture, who when he died went neither to Heaven nor Hell, then there is such a Middle place as Purgatory; but there is one whose words are recorded in Scripture, &c. [Page 41]Ergo. I have seen a Papist catch at this Syllogism ve­ry greedily, and as Impatient to know who that One was, as if he would presently have gone a Con­verting with the Argument. But he was as blank when he was told that it was Balaam's Ass, as I fancy Dr. Arnault was, when he had read and considered the long Story of the Superficies; which, I believe, never yet drew one of those back again to the Church of Rome, whom Cartes complains the Do­ctrine of Real Accidents drove away.

2. This Proposition, Nihili nullae possunt esse Affectiones, That Nothing cannot possibly have any Qualities or Affections, is a Necessary and Everlasting Truth; and it is so clear and self-evident, that all words and discourse about it would but darken the Natural Light which is in it. Now a Wafer or sing­ing Cake is an Extended, Round, White Substance, having all the Qualities and Affections of Bread; and when this Substance Sect. 25. ut Omnino esse desinant. wholly ceases to be, it is nothing. But if the Extension, Roundness, White­ness, and all the Bready Qualities of it still Remain, then at the same time there do Remain the Extensi­on, the Roundness, the Whiteness, and the Bready Qualities or Affections of Nothing, which is Im­possible.

And that Nothing, whose Extension, Roundness, Whiteness and Bready Qualities are still Remaining, is an Extended, Round, White and Bready Nothing; which are so many Contradictions and Impossibili­ties. Q. E. D.

I see that I must either break off Abruptly, or never have done. For I find the Dividing of the Accidents of a Wafer into 3 Parts, which is one of the Operations performed in the Mass; and with the self same Division, the Dividing of Christ's Bo­dy into 3 Wholes; and many more of their Ab­surdities coming thick into my head; and there­fore I will here Conclude in time.

All these Demonstrations hitherto are Arguments to all Mankind, I have now an Argument or Two ad Hominem, or to the Papists themselves.

And 1st, By their own Infallible Doctrine of Concomitancy I shall Demonstrate, That there has been never a God's Body, as they call it, upon Earth these 1600 Years; Provided they will allow me, First, That Christ's Body has been in Heaven these 1600 Years. And 2ly, That Heaven and Earth are different and distant Places. I reckon that Infallibi­lity her self, either has granted me both these Postu­lata already, in these following words, Tr. Cat. de Euch. Sect. 37. But it is plainly Impossible, That the Body of Christ should be in the Sacrament, by coming out of one Place into another, for so it would come to pass, that the Body of Christ would be Absent from its Seat in Heaven; (Now I presume, if it has not been Absent from its Seat in Heaven, to come and be Present in the Sacrament these 1600 Years, it has not been Absent upon any other Account): Or else I reckon that because the things Demanded are very Reaso­nable, she will not now stick at the Granting of them. Now the Rule of Concomitancy is this, Tr. Cat. de [Page 43]Euch. Sect. 33. Si enim duo aliqua inter se reipsa con­jungantur, Ubi unum sit, ibi alterum etiam esse Necesse est. If any two things are Really joined toge­ther, where the one is, there of Necessity the other must be also. That is to say, it is Impossible for it to be in any other Place. But no two things in the World are more Really joined together, than one and the same thing is with it self; and if it were not so, no one thing could be Really joined to ano­ther. The Union of one and the same thing with it self, is the most close and intimate that can be, and consequently the Concomitancy must be the strict­est. Nay the very Reason, Ground, Bottom, and Foundation of the Rule of Concomitancy is this, Because from Two single Things Really joyned to­gether, there results One Compound. The Union is the Cause of the Concomitancy, because it is Im­possible for the same thing to be Divided from it self. So that if two things which are Really joined toge­ther, must always of Necessity keep company toge­ther, then it is utterly Impossible for one and the same thing to straggle from it self, but it must ever be its own Individual Companion.

From these Premises I say, That Christ's Body having been in Heaven these 1600 Years, if in that Space of Time it has been upon Altars here on Earth, then it has not been at the same time where it has been, but it has broken the Rule of Conco­mitancy, and has strangely stragled from it self; which is Impossible. Q. E. D.

I have studied with all the Application of Mind of which I am capable, to forecast in my thoughts [Page 44]what fault the Papists would find with any of the former Reasonings, or with this last in particular, and cannot foresee nor imagine any. For though we should allow Christ's Body to be Independent of Place, or to have any other Impossible Prerogatives which they list to Invent, yet still this Body must be subject to the Rule of Concomitancy, because they themselves are forced to make use of it to prove that the Body of Christ is under the Species of Wine, and that the Blood of Christ is under the Species of Bread; and it is the only Proof they have. Now if of Necessity the Body must be by Concomitancy where the Blood is, then by an ante­cedent Necessity the Blood must be where the Blood is; for the Blood's being there is the cause of the Bodies being there likewise. So the Body being un­der the Form of Bread, is the reason that the Blood is there also; but then to be sure the Body must be there. From whence, as I shewed before, it undenia­bly follows, That Christ's Body is only in Heaven; or else it is not where it is, which overthrows the very Foundation of Concomitancy.

2. The Second Argument shall be drawn from their Form of Consecration, For this is my Body, being the words of our Saviour from whence they have wrested the Doctrine of Transubstantiation. Now to give them a Samplar of their own, and to shew them how they themselves interpret Scripture, I say that it appears by the very words of Consecra­tion, That the Priest himself is also Transubstan­tiated; for the Body is Christ's, and yet the Priest says it is My Body, which cannot be True, unless the [Page 45]Priest and Christ be the same: And that cannot be, but by an Admirable Change and Conversion, which the Holy Catholick Church has conveniently and properly named Transubstantiation. No, say the Pa­pists in great anger, There is no such Change at all, for the Priest only stands for Christ, and Sect. 82. Personam sus­cipiunt Perso­nam gerens. sustains his Person; he only Represents him in that Action, and is in Christ's stead; so that we are not to look upon the Priest in that solemn Action as Friar John, but as Christ himself. And therefore the Priest may say with Truth, this is My Body, tho Literally and Properly, and in strictness of Speech, it is Christ's Body, and not His. To which I again reply. Why this is the very Exposition of these words of our Saviour, for which the Hereticks have all along been Burnt, namely, This Bread stands for my Body, and Represents it in this Action; it is instead of my Bo­dy, and bears the Character of it; and you are not so much to consider it as Bread, but to look up­on it as the Representation of my Body, which is given for you. And therefore with Truth I can say it is my Body, though Literally, and Properly, and in strictness of Speech, it is Bread, and not my Na­tural Body.

Now therefore let the Papists give or take. Either the Bread is not Transubstantiated; or if it be, by virtue of the self-same words the Priest is Transub­stantiated too. For every word in the Prolation with one Breath, (except the word Enim, Sect. 20.) does Operate as well as Signifie, and Does what it Says; and therefore if the word Corpus be effectual to make it a Body, then the word Meum makes it [Page 46]the Priests Body. The Wit of Man cannot find an Evasion, and I doubt not but I am able to maintain this Argument against all the Popish Priests in the world. For all the Advantage lies clearly on the Protestant Side. For our Saviour visibly took Bread, and gave it the office of Representing him, and made it the Figure of his Body, as Tertullian's word is; He erected it as a standing Memorial to be used in Remembrance or Commemoration of him, as S Luke's word is; To shew forth his Death till he come, as S. Paul speaks. 'Tis true, he commanded his Disci­ples to repeat the same Action, and to do as he had done; But where did he bid the Priest to Personate him? That he gave us the Bread by the Name of his Body, Three of the Four Gospels witness, and by the Name of his Broken Body, S. Paul witnesses; But where did he ever say, That He himself would always Sacrifice himself by the Priests Hands, and say, Hoc est Corpus meum, to the end of the world, by the Priests Mouth? And further, There is not one word which the Papists have said in behalf of the Bread being Transubstantiated, but holds as strongly for the Priests being Transubstantiated; which makes full as much for the Dignity and Maje­sty of the Sacrament, for the abasing and mortifying of our Deceivable Senses, and for the improving and exalting our Faith, and making it Meritorious, as the other can.

We have gained such considerable Advan­tages by the foregoing part of our Discourse, that now we are able unalterably to renounce the Doctrine of Transubstantiation. For ha­ving [Page 47]Demonstrated the Impossibility of it, We have thereby Demonstrated, that though Heaven and Earth should pass away, yet that Doctrine can never be True. We have likewise at the same time Demonstrated the Protestant Exposition of those words of our Saviour, This is my Body, to be the true and necessary Sense of them; for either there is a Change of the Bread into the Body of Christ, or there is not: But because such a Change is an utter Impossibility, as we have abundantly proved, therefore it remains, That the Protestant Doctrine, which asserts there is no such Change, is Demonstrably True. We have also made it as clear as the Light, That neither the Letter of a Divine Revelation, nor the pretence of an Infinite Power, nor any thing in the world can support one single Contradiction; because if one single Contradiction could stand, it would destroy the very Being of God himself, and deprive the world of the Adorable Object of all Religion. For sup­posing it Impossible for a Being of Necessary Existence to Exist, which is but supposing a Contradiction, and we have immediately lost the Author of all Divine Revelation; And not only so, but the whole Universe likewise must presently sink into Nothing, or rather indeed it could never have been at all.

But more particularly we shall find the Benefit of the former Demonstrations in the short re­mainder of our present Discourse, for they will add to what we have further to say against Tran­substantiation all the force and strength which De­monstration can give. Costerus the Jesuit acknow­ledges, (and I suppose all Papists with him) that [Page 48] If the Bread be not changed into the Body of Christ, the worship of the Host is gross Idolatry; But we are past all Ifs and Ands, and have Demonstrated that there can be no such Change of the Bread into Christ's Body: And consequently we have Demon­strated that (supposing that Jesuits Concession just) the Papists in worshipping of the Host, are guilty of gross Idolatry, and the Best Friends they have in the world cannot free them from it. So likewise it can be no longer a Moot-point, or a disputable matter, whether it be Criminal to call the Host their Lord God, their Maker, their Former, and their Creator; when we have Demon­strated that it cannot be so, and that it is only a bit of Bread; and to affirm Bread to be a God, if it be not Blasphemy, it wants a name in our Lan­guage. In short, That can never be a Divine Mystery which is not in a Possibility of being a Divine Truth: And consequently the Mystery and Miraculousness of Transubstantiation, which has been the old and dark stronghold of Popery, is ut­terly demolished: And the Papists having lost that shelter, not only all the Absurdities of their Belief concerning it will fall upon them with their whole weight, but also all their absurd Practices in refer­ence to it, to which I shall now proceed.

2. The second General Head is of Practical Ab­surdities, by which I mean such unreasonable and unworthy Actions as are done by the Papists in pursuance of their Doctrine of Transubstantiation. And here I can by no means charge them with ea­ting their Maker, or eating Man's flesh, and drink­ing [Page 49]Man's blood in the Sacrament: For I have shewn it to be impossible for them to do either of these. But yet because they intend and profess to do both, perhaps the guilt is no less than if they really did them. And the Absurdity of their Pra­ctice in this behalf is very equally matched with the Absurdity and Contradictiousness of their Be­lief. For as they hold the Sacrament to be the Na­tural Body of Christ, and yet say it is in several Places at once, and is made at several times, and is in the Form of Bread, whereby it appears to be not the Natural Body of Christ, but a piece of Bread; wherein they say and unsay at once: So likewise they worship and serve, and pray to that which I have Demonstrated to be a bit of Bread as if it were a God, and immediately they undo all that they have done, and treat him not at all like a God, but eat him up as if he were a bit of Bread. So also they say expresly, That the common Nature of Mankind abhors the eating of Man's flesh, and drinking of Man's blood, and yet they eat and drink that, of which they say they have greater Assurance that it is Man's flesh, and Man's blood, than the Testimony of all their Senses can give them.

But omitting these things, and the great Indig­nity which is offered to our Blessed Saviour by such like Practices, I shall take notice of their Idola­try in worshipping a piece of Bread as if it were God himself. And this Practice is unavoidable Ido­latry if the Doctrine of Transubstantiation should chance to be false: And if it be not false, then a [Page 50]thousand Millions of Contradictions must be all of them true. So that if the Apostles rent their Clothes when the Lvcaonians said that the Gods were come down in the likeness of Men, and were going to give them Divine Honour; Acts 14.11. surely they would hardly spare their flesh, but rend that too, if they should be shewn more than an Hundred God-Almighties together in the Form of Bread, and should see Di­vine Worship paid to them: Especially, since the Apostles Evangelized men to turn away from Ido­latry to the Living God who made Heaven and Earth; if moreover the Papists should plead Gospel for their Idolatry, and say that they were Evange­lized into it: I have often thought what St. Paul and Barnabas would have said and done in that Case. But what they then cried out and said to the Lycaonians, Sirs, why do ye these things? For we are men of like Passions with you; methinks the Host it self says as loud every day to the Papists; Sirs, why do ye these things? For I am no Object of Worship, but like another piece of Bread. I have all the Properties, and am subject to all the Casu­alties of any other bit of Bread: For either I am presently eaten and swallowed down as any other Bread is, or else if I be kept, I grow Stale and Mouldy. I am put into a Box for fear of Mis­chances, for if the Mouse gets me, I am gone. Alas, I am Bread, I am no God.’ Thus to my Apprehension the Host it self continually cries out and reasons with them. And Oh would to God that they would consider to as good purpose as the Lyca­onians did! I should be content to endure great hard­ships to see that Happy Day.

And now, O ye Papists, I have discharged my Conscience; for it has troubled me that I had not long since laid these things plain and open before you. And if I knew how to incline you to consi­der them, I would not think much to kneel down at your Feet. But if you will not consider them with that evenness of mind which is always neces­sary to Conviction, but rather will consider them with that prejudice and indignation which shall put you upon Contradicting and Objecting, and using all your Subtilties and Evasions; then I beg of you to do this throughly, and spare me not. For I have written this Discourse only for the Honour of God, and out of love to Truth, which never loses any thing by being Tried and Examined, but still comes the Brighter out of the Fire. It is the Cause of God my Saviour who died for me, and I am willing to spend the remainder of my days in it, or lay down my life for it, even which of the two He shall please.

And as for you, O ye Protestants, you have great reason to Bless God, that you were Born into the World since the Reformation; whereby you enjoy the Benefit of having God's own Book in your own Vulgar Tongue: And thereby are taught to know God and his Creatures asunder, and have learnt to distinguish our Saviour Christ from his Sa­craments, and to know your Maker from a Bit of Bread. Who have the Advantage of reading God's pure Word, without either Romish Comments or Rhemish Annotations which overthrow the Text. Who are allowed to see with your own Eyes, That [Page 52]if Scripture should be so forced and wrested as the Papists have used it in this Case, then we must all be Anthropomorphites, and either Believe that God is of Human Shape, or else give him the Lye I know not how oft. For the Right Hand of God, and many other Bodily parts of him, are ten times oftner as­serted in Scripture, than This is my Body. If the Pa­pists say, That the Scripture in affirming that God is a Spirit, does sufficiently rectifie all such blockish Mistakes; I say so too: And withal, that our Savi­our has done abundantly more to prevent and fore­close the no less blameable mistake concerning Tran­substantiation. For after he had called the Cup his Blood, he afterwards again called it the Fruit of the Vine; and after his Resurrection it self, he gave his Disciples this Test to judg and discern his Body, and to know it by, Luke 24.39. Behold my hands and my feet, that it is I my self: handle me and see: for a spirit hath not flesh and bones, as ye see me have. From whence we are bound to conclude, That where we cannot see Hands and Feet, where we cannot see and feel Flesh and Bones, where we cannot handle and see Christ's Body, there it is not he himself: Well may there be some Sign, or Token, or Memorial of his Body, but it cannot be he himself. I shall not stand to enquire whether this be the Criterion to know Human Bodies from those Bodies which An­gels heretofore assumed; but we are sure that these are Infallible Marks to know our Saviour's Body by, and that is all our present Business.

But as for the Noise they have lately made about our Saviour's surprizing the Disciples, and entring [Page 53]into the room, when the Doors were shut, there ne­ver was any thing more precarious than the sense which the Papists have put upon that place, as if our Saviour had passed through the Doors. For there were Two Things, as appears by the Scripture, which disturbed the Disciples; First, That a Person should come into the Room without knocking or giving them any warning, when they had made all fast, and kept themselves close for sear of the Jews: And the Second was, That he entred in such a manner as made them apprehend him to be a Spirit. Now how did ever Angels or Spirits enter into a Room, or St. Peter come out of Prison under the conduct of an Angel, but by the Doors opening before them of their own accord, and shutting again after them? As in the case of all the Apostles, where the Officers found the Prison shut with all safety, Acts 5.23. And I never yet heard or read of Angel or Spirit, which entred a Room through Crannies or Key­holes, or through Inch-boards. But let that be as it will, if our Saviour had entred in any such manner, it had absolutely overthrown the Criterion which he gave them at the same time to judg of his Body, and to Demonstrate that he was not a Spirit. For common sense would have taught the Disciples to reply, It is true indeed, whatever you are, Man or Spirit, that you have now a gross Human Body, and we cannot deny it; but that, it seems, is only when you please, for you had not such a one a while ago, when you were pleased to come in at the Key­hole; whereas there was nothing at all of this, but they knew and owned him, and were glad to see the Lord. But to conclude, Is not this a very pertinent [Page 54]proof of Transubstantiation, when the Doctrine of Transubstantiation asserts a thing quite contrary to the Passing through Doors? For it asserts that our Saviour's Body is Present in a Room, not by being Translated, or by Passing out of one Place into ano­ther, but by being produced in all fresh Places, and by being Within Doors, and Without Doors, at the same Time.

In short, O my Protestant Countrymen, You are Happy, if you know your own Happiness, and are not weary of it. While you have the Light, Re­joice in it, and walk worthy of it; and then God will continue it to you and to your Posterity. So be it.


Books lately Printed for W. Rogers.

THE Doctrines and Practices of the Church of Rome, truly Repre­sented; in Answer to a Book intituled, A Papist Misrepresented, and Represented, &c. Quarto.

An Answer to a Discourse intituled, Papists protesting against Protestant Popery; being a Vindication of Papists not Misrepresented by Protestants: And containing a particular Examination of Monsieur de Meaux, late Bishop of Condom, his Exposition of the Doctrine of the Church of Rome, in the Articles of Invocation of Saints, Worship of Images, occasioned by that Discourse. Quarto.

An Answer to the Amicable Accommodation of the Differences between the Representer and the Answerer. Quarto.

A View of the whole Controversie between the Representer and the Answerer; with an Answer to the Representer's last Reply; in which are laid open some of the Methods by which Protestants are Misrepresented by Papists. Quarto.

The Doctrine of the Trinity, and Transubstantiation, compared as to Scripture, Reason, and Tradition; in a new Dialogue between a Prote­stant and a Papist, the First Part: Wherein an Answer is given to the late Proofs of the Antiquity of Transubstantiation, in the Books called, Consen­sus Veterum, and Nubes Testium, &c. Quarto.

The Doctrine of the Trinity and Transubstantiation, compared as to Scripture, Reason, and Tradition; in a new Dialogue between a Protestant and a Papist, the Second Part: Wherein the Doctrine of the Trinity is shewed to be agreeable to Scripture and Reason, and Transubstantiation repugnant to both. Quarto.

An Answer to the Eighth Chapter of the Representer's Second Part, in the first Dialogue between him and his Lay-Friend.

Of the Authority of Councils, and the Rule of Faith. By a Person of Quality; With an Answer to the Eight Theses, laid down for the Tryal of the English Reformation, in a Book that came lately from Oxford.

Sermons and Discourses, some of which never before Printed; The Third Volume. By the Reverend Dr. Tillotson, Dean of Canterbury. 8vo.

A Manual for a Christian Soldier, Written by Erasmus, and Translated into English. Twelves.

A new and easie Method to learn to Sing by Book, whereby one (who hath a good Voice and Ear) may without other help, learn to Sing true by Notes. Design'd chiefly for, and applied to the promoting of Psal­mody; and furnished with Variety of Psalm-Tunes in Parts, with Dire­ctions for that kind of Singing.

A Book of Cyphers or Letters Reverst; being a Work very pleasant and useful, as well for Gentlemen as all sorts of Artificers, Engravers, Painters, Carvers, Chacers, Embroiderers, &c. Where you may find a Cypher for any Name whatsoever, curiously composed after the newest Mode. By Jeremiah Marlow. Price Bound 5 s.

A Perswasive to frequent Communion in the Sacrament of the Lord's Supper. By John Tillotson, Dean of Canterbury. In Octavo. Price 3 d

A Discourse against Transubstantiation. In Octavo, Price 3 d.

The State of the Church of Rome when the Reformation began, as it appears by the Advices given to Paul III. and Julius III. by Creatures of their Own. With a Preface leading to the matter of the Book. 40.

A Letter to a Friend, Reflecting on some Passages in a Letter to the D. of P. in Answer to the Arguing Part of his first Letter to Mr. G.

The Reflecter's Defence of his Letter to a Friend, against the Furious Assaults of Mr. I S. in his second Catholic Letter. In four Dialogues. 40.

A Sermon Preached at the Funeral of the Reverend Benj. Calamy, D.D. and late Minister of St. Lawrence Jury, Lond. Jan. 7th, 1686. By W. Sher­lock, D. D. Master of the Temple.

A Vindication of some Protestant Principles of Church-Unity and Catholick-Communion, from the Charge of Agreement with the Church of Rome. In Answer to a late Pamphlet, Intituled, An Agreement be­tween the Church of England and the Church of Rome, evinced from the Concertation of some of her Sons with their Brethren the Dissenters. By William Sherlock, D. D. Master of the Temple.

A Discourse concerning the Nature of Idolatry; in which a late Au­thor's true and only Notion of Idolatry is Considered and Confuted. 40.

The Protestant Resolv'd; or, a Discourse shewing the Ʋnreasonableness of his Tarning Roman Catholick for Salvation. The 2d Edition.

A Discourse concerning the Nature of Idolatry: In which the Bishop of Oxford's True and Only Notion of Idolatry is Considered and Confuted. 40.

A Preservative against Popery: Being some Plain Directions to Unlearn­ed Protestants, how to Dispute with Romish Priests. The First Part. By William Sherlock, D. D. The 4th Edition.

This keyboarded and encoded edition of the work described above is co-owned by the institutions providing financial support to the Text Creation Partnership. Searching, reading, printing, or downloading EEBO-TCP texts is reserved for the authorized users of these project partner institutions. Permission must be granted for subsequent distribution, in print or electronically, of this EEBO-TCP Phase II text, in whole or in part.