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Bible Encyclopedias

Cyclopedia of Biblical, Theological and Ecclesiastical Literature

Communion in Both Kinds.

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"The communion was universally administered in both kinds (bread and wine), to both clergy and laity, until about the twelfth century, when the cup began to be gradually withdrawn from the laity in the Western Church, on account (as was affirmed) of the disorders to which the use of it had given rise. Communion in one kind is intimately connected with the doctrine of transubstantiation. Romanists profess to believe that Christ, whole and entire soul, body, and divinity is contained in either species, and in the smallest particle of each. Hence they infer that, whether the communicant receives the bread or the wine, he enjoys the full benefit of the sacrament. Thus, to support this absurd and monstrous dogma, a Christian ordinance is divided; transubstantiation justifies communion in one kind, and communion in one kind proves the truth of transubstantiation. This is the principal reason assigned in the Catechism of the Council of Trent. After alleging many frivolous reasons, such as that there is danger of spilling the wine in a crowded assembly, and thus inflicting an indignity on the blood of Christ; that many cannot bear the smell or taste of wine; that it may become vapid; that it is extremely scarce in some places, and would involve great expense to procure it it says, A circumstance which principally influenced the Church in establishing this practice was, that means were to be devised to crush the heresy which denied that Christ, whole and entire, is contained under either species, and asserted that the body is contained under the species of bread without the blood, and the blood under the species of wine without the body. This object was attained by communion under the species of bread alone, which places, as it were sensibly before our eyes, the truth of the Catholic faith.' Protestants believe that without the cup there can be no sacrament at all, and therefore the Eucharist is not celebrated in the Romish Church." For the history of this question, (See LORDS SUPPER). Bingham, Orig. Eccl. 15:5; Farrar, Eccles. Dict. s.v.


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McClintock, John. Strong, James. Entry for 'Communion in Both Kinds.'. Cyclopedia of Biblical, Theological and Ecclesiastical Literature. https://www.studylight.org/encyclopedias/tce/c/communion-in-both-kinds.html. Harper & Brothers. New York. 1870.

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