June 16, 2017

Samuel Langley (d.1694) on the Death of Christ and the Lord’s Supper

It must be acknowledged, that these words [“Take, eat, this is the Body of Christ which is broken for you,” or “And this Cup is the New Testament in Christ’s blood which is shed for you”] considered absolutely and in themselves, may be interpreted more generally either, 1. of Christ’s being sacrificed for the redemption of all the world of mankind, the genus humanum; and that not only sufficienter (for that which is paid for the redemption of persons, is not strictly a price, because it is sufficient in its own nature to be a worthy and valuable consideration to redeem them) but conditionally by way of Christ’s intention also to redeem mankind, that is, upon the condition of believing: So that this Gospel may be preached to every human creature (not so to any lapsed Angel) He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved. God so loved the world, &c. Or, 2. (if this please not, the fuller explication whereof may be seen in learned Camero, and the larger disquisition of it in the acute Amyraldus) Christ died for all, in that he bought all, to be Lord and Ruler over them, as Mediator in the Kingdom he hath received by dispensation from the Father to be Lord of all. Or, 3. as he procured some common benefits for all. But I conceive it’s manifest, these words of administration considered as words of administration in the Sacrament, and so with special relation to the Sacrament, cannot be understood in so large a sense, q. d. Christ died for thee if thou wilt believe, or on condition of they faith; or Christ died for thee, or was broken for thee, that he might have power of thee as Lord and Judge, or to purchase some common benefits for thee, as he died for all mankind. For so they might be applied to heathens, yea to the most wicked of heathens, and such as are visibly in the most notorious opposition of, and apostasy from the very name of Christianity; and so this should be no more an application of comfort to the visibly most worthy receiver, then is applicable to the vilest Mahumetan on the face of the earth.
Samuel Langley, Suspension Reviewed, Stated, Cleared and Settled Upon Plain Scripture-Proof (London: Printed by J. Hayes for Thomas Underhil at the Anchor and Bible in Pauls Church-yard, 1658), 65.

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