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to give the eucharist to infants, which custom arose about the third century.
Budeus' Theol. Dogm. book 5, chapter 1, section 19. 'No objection can be made to this custom but what may with equal force be made to the custom of baptizing infants.
Dr. Prestly's Address on Giving the Lord's Supper to Children, p. 31. "The visible church consists of all that profess the true religion, together with their children, and is the kingdom of the Lord Jesus Christ; out of which there is no ordinary possibility of salvation ; the parties baptized are solemnly admitted into the visible church; baptism is not to be administered to any that are out of the visible church; but infants descending from parents both or but one of them professing faith in Christ and obedience to him, are in that respect within the covenant and are to be baptized. All baptized persons are members of the church, are under its care, and subject to its discipline; and when they have arrived at the years of discretion they are bound to perform all the duties of church members. Children born within the pale of the visible church, and dedicated to God in baptism, are uvder the inspection and government of the church, and when they come to years of discretion, if they be free from scandal, appear sober and steady, and have a sufficient knowledge to discern the Lord's body, they ought to be informed that it is their duty and their privilege to come to the Lord's supper.'
Presbyterian Confession of Faith, pp. 111, 287, 392, 436. During their minority which reaches till they are more than thirteen years, according to the example of Ishmael, and till about sixteen years of age, they are really members to such intents and purposes as that if their parents are dismissed to other churches, their children ought to be put into the letters of dismission with them.'*
Dr. J. Cotton's Essay on the Ioliness of Ob. Members, p. A.
• The above doctrine having been fully preached in a presbyteriao church in the state of New York, and the children pot
'It is objected further that all baptized persons are by that class of Christians to whom I have attached myself, considered as members of the Christian church; yet those who are baptized in infancy, are not treated as if they possessed that character; particularly, they are not admitted to the sacramental supper: nor made objects of ecclesiastical discipline. As this objection has in my own view, a more serious import than any other which has been alledged, it deserves particular consideration. In the first place, I acknowledge without hesitation, that the conduct of those with whom I am in immediate communion, and so far as I know their opinions also, with regard to this subject, are in a greater or less degree erroneous and indefensible.'
Dwight's Theol. Sermon, 167. From the above it is obvious that infant communion was the practice of the Romish church; and that pedobaptists have adopted the sentiment in their confessions of faith, but refuse to reduce it to practice.---See also Zornius' Hist. Euchar. Infantum: Robinson's Claude: Watt's Ruin and Recovery: Edwards on Original Sin: and Ridgeley's Bod Divi. vel. I. While there was but one denomination the Lord's supper was administered to all its members; but when Arius and his party went off, the true Church refused to commune with them; when the church of Rome became corrupt, the true church refused to commune with them; when the Lutherans and Calvinists left the Roman catholics, the Romish church refused to commune with them, and they refused to commune with the church of Rome, and the true church refused to commune with all these sects. 'In a letter, in 1535, to the brethren of the Waldenses (the true church) in Bohemia, Melancthon thus writes, Since we agree in the principal articles of Christian doctrine let us embrace each other.'
invited to the Lord's lable, on one sacramental occasion, in A. D. 1832, while the church was celebrating the Lord's supper, a number of these young church members assembled in the gal. lery, and attended to the communion among themselves, by administering and receiving pieces of pumpkin in the name of the Lord.
Dr. J. M. Mason's Plea, p. 167. But the Waldenses positively refused to communicate with these heterodox sects.
The council of Trent, which continued from 1547 to 1564, thus paraphrased the Savior's words, Luke xxii. 19, · This do,' That is receive the power of converting these elements of lead and wine, into the true and proper substance of my body and blood : and offering them up to my Father, a propitiatory sacrifice for the living and the dead; this is called transubstantiation.
Council Trident, sess. 13, chapt. 1, can 4, sess. 22, can. 2, 3. The Lutherans invented the doctrine of consub-. stantiation, which affirms that witli the bread is exhibited that body of Christ which was delivered for us; and with the wine is exbibited that blood which is the basis of the new testament.' But this was so ofensive in the Calvinists (Presbyterians) that they would not commune with the Lutherans. "Jolin Knox accepted at Frankfort on the Maine, the charge of a congregation of English exiles; and when the congregation had agreed to adopt the order of the Geneva church, and requested him to proceed to administer the communion according to it, although he approved of that order he declined to carry it into effect.
Dr. J. M. Mason's Plea, p. 185. A pious Scotchman, now residing in this city, who was a member of the Scotch church for many years, says 'In Scotland there are the following pedobaptist denominations, viz. the Established church, the Covonanters, the Relief church, the church of England, the Bergers and the Anti-Bergers, (now the United Cecession church,) the Independents, the Wesleyan Methodist, and the Independent Methodist. Each of these
sects is close communion in every sense of the word. They never partake of the Lord's supper together;
say, if we have reason to divide into different sects we can not unite in the Lord's supper, which is the most essential act of church fellowship. It is thus evident that the Presbyterian churches in Scotland are einphatically close communion, and ever have been since the days of John Knox.
A question being asked president Edwards relating to the practice of European pedobaptists, in the use of the Lord's supper, he answers, 'The divines of Scotland, I find in many of their sermons, and other discourses, declare themselves to strictness in admission to the Lord's supper.-I might bring much to this purpose from Mr. Andrew Gray's book of sermons, 1716. So from Ebenezer Erskine's Synodical Sermon, 1732; and his discourse on fencing the table, annexed to his sermon on John xiv. 15. So from Mr. Williams Synodical Sermon, 1733, where he sets down a variety of searching questions, no less than twenty-seven, which he advises to be put to proponents, and their answers waited for before they are admitted, (to the Lord's table.) And now to pass over to England: Mr. Baxter in his five disputations has much that runs in the same strain; so in his reformed liturgy, and in his Christian concord, where we have his brethren joining their testimony with his. Likewise, Mr. Charnock in his discourse on the Lord's supper. Mr. Palmer in his scripture rail to the Lord's table. Mr. Saunders in his Antidiatribe. Mr. Longley, Mr. Doolittle, Mr. Henry, Dr. Earl, and others, in their books on the Lord's supper.' President Edward's Works, vol. 4, pp. 437, 439.
America was settled by different sects of pedobaptists, and that they were all close communion is evident from the heads of agreement entered into by the Presbyterians and Congregationalists at Saybrook, Sept. 9, 1708, established by law at New Haven, Oct. 14, 1708,
and printed at New-London, 1710, in which they provide, chapt. 4, sect. 3, for opening communion, in these words, That known members of particular churches, constituted as aforesaid, may have occasional communion with each other in the ordinances of the gospel, viz. the word, prayer, sacrament, and singing psalms.' 'Such an event, it is believed, had never before occured in the United States. The Presbyterian church in North America sprung inmediately from the established church in Scotland; the associate reformed church, also, was founded in the union of ministers and people from the two branches of the cecession in Scotland, and from the reformed presbytery; when they emigrated to this country it was not to be expected that the espirit du corpus, their characteristic feeling, should perish in the Ailantic: und accordingly like the mother churches, they maintaned not only separate communions, but much of their old reserve and distance.'
The colonies of Massachusetts and Connecticut, called a General Council, to discuss and settle a system of faith and practice, which convened at Bostop, June 4, 1657. Among the questions discussed, the second was this, Whether communion of churches as such, be not warrantable by the word of God.Records of Conn.'
Trumbull's History, vol. 1, pp. 301, 303. The first ministers of Connecticut and New-England maintained that all the pastors' office power was confined to his own church and congregation, and that the administering of baptism and the Lord's supper, in other churches, was irregular.-- Hooker's Survey, part 2, pp. 62, 68.
Trumbull's History, vol. I, p. 283. When the pedobaptists in America forsook 'the practice of their close communion mother churches in Europe, and establisned their united religion by law, it is evident that their design in uniting had not so much reference to their opening communion among
Dr. J. M. Mason's Plea.