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Martyred for the Gospel

Martyred for the Gospel
The burning of Tharchbishop of Cant. D. Tho. Cranmer in the town dich at Oxford, with his hand first thrust into the fyre, wherwith he subscribed before. [Click on the picture to see Cranmer's last words.]

Collect of the Day

The Fifth Sunday after the Epiphany.
The Collect.

O LORD, we beseech thee to keep thy Church and household continually in thy true religion; that they who do lean only upon the hope of thy heavenly grace may evermore be defended by thy mighty power; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

Daily Bible Verse

Monday, March 02, 2009

Cranmer: The Presence of Christ

The Third Book teacheth the manner how Christ is present in his Supper


Now this matter of transubstantiation being, as I trust, sufficiently resolved, which is the first part before rehearsed, wherein the papistical doctrine varieth from the catholic truth, order requireth next to intreat of the second part, which is of the manner of the presence of the body and blood of our Saviour Christ in the sacrament thereof, wherein is no less contention than in the first part.


For a plain explication whereof, it is not unknown to all true faithful Christian people, that our Saviour Christ, being perfect God, and in all things equal and coeternal with his Father, for our sakes became also a perfect man, taking flesh and blood of his blessed mother and Virgin Mary, and, saving sin, being in all things like unto us, adjoining unto his divinity a most perfect soul and most perfect body; his soul being endued with life, sense, will, reason, wisdom, memory, and all other things required to the perfect soul of man;and his body being made of very flesh and bones, not only having all members of a perfect man's body in due order and proportion, but also being subject to hunger, thirst, labour, sweat, weariness, cold, heat, and all other like infirmities and passions of man, and unto death also, and that the most vile and painful upon the cross. And after his death he rose again with the selfsame visible and palpable body, and appeared therewith, and showed the same unto his Apostles, and specially to Thomas, making him to put his hands into his side and to feel his wounds. And with the selfsame body he forsook this world, and ascended into heaven, (the apostles seeing and beholding his body when it ascended,) and now sitteth at the right hand of his Father, and there shall remain until the last day, when he shall come again to judge the quick and the dead.


This is the true catholic faith which the Scripture teacheth, and the universal Church of Christ hath ever believed from the beginning, until within these four or five hundred years last past, that the Bishop of Rome, with the assistance of his papists, hath set up a new faith and belief of their own devising, that the same body really, corporally, naturally, and sensibly is in this world still, and that in an hundred thousand places at one time, being enclosed in every pix and bread consecrated.


And although we do affirm according to God's word, that Christ is present in all persons that truly believe in him, in such sort, that with his flesh and blood he doth spiritually nourish them and feed them thereof, as well by the promise of his word, as by the sacramental bread and wine in his holy Supper, which he did institute for the same purpose, yet we do not a little vary from the heinous errors of the papists.


For they teach, that Christ is in the bread and the wine: but we say, according to the truth, that he is in them that worthily eat and drink the bread and wine.

They say, that when any man eateth the bread and drinketh the cup, Christ goeth into his mouth or stomach with the bread and wine, and no further: but we say, that Christ is in the whole man, both in the body and soul of him that worthily eateth the bread and drinketh the cup, and not in his mouth and stomach only.


They say, that Christ is really in the sacramental bread, being reserved an whole year, or so long as the form of the bread remaineth; but after receiving thereof, he flyeth up, say they, from the receiver unto heaven, as soon as the bread is chawed in the mouth, or changed in the stomach: but we say, that Christ remaineth in the man that worthily receiveth it, so long as the man remaineth a member of Christ."

(Page 123-124. Courtney Library of Reformation Classics. Book III. The Work of Thomas Cranmer).

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