2009-02-02_ChurchHistory - Page 1 of 6 Church History David...

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Page 1 of 6 Church History David Steinmetz February 2, 2009 Zwingli: points to memory as the thing for past present and future. Not a reverie, but the reality of the present is the accumulation of things from the past. And the future: anticipation of the heavenly banquet. And the presence of Christ, at the Eucharist. The finite human nature, the Christ must bear the humanity that we have, he has not had his humanity divinized … he needs to keep his link with us. And in his divine nature, he also has the human nature. So, he is seated at the right hand of the Father, and at the same time present as a human. Hyperstatic union makes the divine presence include the human and the human include the divine. In what way Christ can be present in the Lord’s Supper, and in what way he cannot be present. What’s important to Zwingli is to preserve the humanity of Christ. So he can’t accept that Christ is transubstantiated into bread and wine…. That’s what he’s doing with the early reform. The Reform Movement is different than Lutheranism. Memory plays a role. But the flesh profits nothing, the spirit makes alive. The presence is there, but not in the bread and wine. Christ is transformingly present to those who participate in the Great Thanksgiving. They are the many grains that have been made by one spirit into one loaf. Luther agrees with some of these points, but not as many as we may suppose. Luther comes from a very different starting point. But they do agree about some things. For example, they agree that the Lord’s Supper is not a sacrifice. It’s not something that is offered by the priest to God the Father in order to obtain grace from God. It’s not a concept that either Luther or Zwingli sign onto. “It’s not a sacrifice, it’s a benefit.” It’s something holy given to us. They talk about it as a testament. It’s not a sacrifice, it’s a testament. We think about two-sided contracts. For example, to have the lawn maintained. But a will and testament is a special one-sided contract. Something is left to a beneficiary. The testator executes, and the beneficiary benefits. The testator dies. You get nothing to get it. The aunt wills a piano to you. She dies, and you get it. The condition is one that she needs to meet, not one that you need to meet.
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Page 2 of 6 The testament of the Lord’s Supper is given to the beneficiary on the basis of Christ’s death. Luther and Zwingli and both get it. We offer our bodies to be a living sacrifice, but that notion of sacrifice never leaves, but the notion of the priest offering the body and blood in bread and wine – that kind of sacrifice is not something that neither Zwingli or Luther accept.
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2009-02-02_ChurchHistory - Page 1 of 6 Church History David...

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