You offer polluted bread on my altar; and you say, Wherein have we polluted you? In that you say…
1. Let us state the parallel between the altar of burnt-offerings, the table of the shew-bread, and the sacramental table of the Lord's Supper; the offerings which were presented to God on the first, and those which we still present to him on the second. The viands presented on both the one and the other are the meat of God, or the bread of God. The sacred ceremonies are destined to the same end, and represent the same mysteries, namely, the intimate union which God wishes to maintain with His Church and people. The august ceremony of the holy sacrament is a mystery of reconcilia tion between the penitent sinner and the God of mercy. What made the ancient Jews profane the table of the Lord . How came they to say, The table of the Lord is contemptible"? It was —
(1) Because they formed not just ideas of the end which God proposed to Himself, when He enjoined the observance of these solemnities.
(2) It arose from their unwillingness to fulfil the moral engagements which the ceremonial observance imposed.
(3) It proceeded from their wanting a just sense of the value of the blessings communicated by these. The sources of unworthy communicating in the Christian world are the same — want of illumination; want of virtue; want of feeling. Apply to those who, on reviewing their former communion services, see cause to consider themselves as chargeable with the guilt which God imputed to the Jews who lived in the days of Malachi. Reflect on the shortness of the time usually devoted to preparation for partaking of the Lord's Supper. And on the slightness of the changes which these solemnities produce. Do not deceive yourselves. Study to know and feel the whole extent of your felicity. and let a sense of the benefits with which God hath loaded thee, kindle the hallowed flame of gratitude in your hearts.
Parallel VersesKJV: Ye offer polluted bread upon mine altar; and ye say, Wherein have we polluted thee? In that ye say, The table of the LORD is contemptible.