Saturday, October 11, 2008

The antitype: Bitter herbs and unleavened bread

There is an excellent resource at This indexes puritan resources available on Google Books. The whole works of Ussher, Isaac Ambrose and the most well-known puritans are here together with links to dedicated websites and scholars.
One of the most interesting resources to me is the A Treatise of the Institution, Right Administration and Receiving of the Sacrament of the Lords Supper: Delivered in XX Sermons at St. Laurence-Jury, London by the Westminster Divine Richard Vines. This was popular with people in Scotland in the eighteenth century particularly at the Cambuslang revival.

It appears that a part of the treatise was lost but in Providence then restored to the author and so was able to be printed. Vines begins by demonstrating how Christ is the anti-type of the paschal lamb and the connection between the Passover and the Lord's Supper. "The Apostle interprets leven, malice and wickedness, unlevened bread, fincerity and truth, I Cor. 5. 8. and so it teaches us, how Christ is to be received by us, and what manner of perfons they must be that apply and receive Jesus Christ. They must remember their bondage under fin, not with delight, but bitterness, and feel the sour taste of their former ways, as sinners contrite and broken bitter herbs are good sauce for the Paschal Lamb sin felt sets an edge on the stomach as Vinegar. Chrift relishes well to such a soul; when thou comest to eat his Supper, bring thy own sauce with thee, bitter herbs, and refresh on thy self the memory of thy old ways and former lufts; that's the sauce, the bread is unlevened bread, you cannot eat the Lamb and leven together: a secure hypocrite, a filthy swine not purged from sin, to think to have Christ and his sin too, to be pardoned and not purged, to be saved and not sanctified. Away, and never think to eat this Lamb with leven'd bread come with bitter herbs them mayest, contrition for sin, but come not with and in thy sins, for that's eating with levened bread; therefore search it out, and let thy sins be searcht out as with a candle, and let them be execrable to thee, that God may see thy hatred of them, and thy loathing of thy self for them".

Vines is also excellent on what it is to eat and drink worthily and unworthily.