Andrewes and impanation cont.
The term ‘impanation’ does not appear until the controversy of Berengarius of Tours at the end of the eleventh century. Impanation teaches that Christ is really present in the Eucharist, but rejects the idea of Transubstantiation. Rather there is a presence by a kind of impanation (Christum quodammodo impanari). It is akin to Consubstantiation but focuses more on a sort of ‘hypostatic’ union of the bread and wine with the Body and Blood of Christ. Impanation teaches that in the Eucharist, Christ, through his human body is substantially united with the substances of bread and wine, and thus really present as God, made bread: Deus panis factus. Impanation is a word that was coined to imitate the language of the Incarnation. There is an ‘interchange’ that takes place between the Son of God and the substance of bread, though only through the mediation of the body of Christ.
Let me begin by stating that I am merely putting these quotations out for discussion more so than my being convinced that Andrewes could be classified as one who held to impanation. It is a term that is used negatively by Roman Catholics and Reformers alike to deny the manner of presence of Christ in the Eucharistic elements of bread and wine. Impanation is defined to be a view that is akin to consubstantiation and it is a presence by a kind of Christum quodammodo impanari. It focuses more on a sort of 'hypostatic' union of the bread and wine and the body and blood of Christ. This view describes an interchange that takes place between the Son of God and the substance of bread, though only through the mediation of the body of Christ. It is argued that Luther denied the hypostatic union of the unchanged substance of bread but did teach that the body of Christ penetrated it. Below are some quotations with periodic interactions.
Please feel free to leave some thoughts:
I particularly found what could be some evidence of impanation in Andrewes’ Nativity sermon on Ephesians 1.10 preached in 1623. This sermon, like many others of Andrewes’, often speaks of the Eucharist as the means by which we pre-eminently partake of the Incarnation. So a reference to the ‘hypostatic’ union would not be too surprising of a theme within that context. The sermon is devoted to making sure that the hearer understands that all things are to be summed up in the heavenlies and on earth in Christ. Throughout the sermon Andrewes is keen to focus on the two realities of heaven and earth being united in Christ. After focusing on this Christological doctrine in the Incarnation he turns that doctrine into an opportunity to discuss the Eucharist. He unites it to the Church’s celebration of this recapitulation of Christmas Day and Andrewes develops his thought by showing how the elements of bread and wine are brought together in Heaven where he says, “Both these issuing out of this day’s recapitulation, both in corpus autem aptasti Mihi of this day.” He related the coming together of these two realities (heaven and earth) as a sort of hypostatical union of the elements and what is actually received in the elements; namely the body and blood of Christ. He stated that, “And the gathering or vintage of these two in the blessed Eucharist, is as I may say a kind of hypostatical union of the sign and the thing signified, so united together as are the two natures of Christ.” He went on to defend his sacramental theology of union of signs and things signified from the Fathers. Particularly he uses Irenaeus, Theodoret from the East and Gelasius from the West. This position was used against Eutyches. From the writings of Irenaeus, Andrewes claims he is gleaning these insights. He echoes this quotation from Book IV. 18 adv. heres. It reads,
But our opinion is in accordance with the Eucharist, and the Eucharist in turn establishes our opinion. For we offer to Him His own, announcing consistently the fellowship and union of the flesh and Spirit. For as the bread, which is produced from the earth, when it receives the invocation of God, is no longer common bread, but the Eucharist, consisting of two realities, earthly and heavenly; so also our bodies, when they receive the Eucharist, are no longer corruptible, having the hope of the resurrection to eternity.. He echoes Theodoret at this point who writes:
For even after the consecration the mystic symbols are not deprived of their own nature; they remain in their former substance figure and form; they are visible and tangible as they were before. But they are regarded as what they are become, and believed so to be, and are worshipped as being what they are believed to be. Compare then the image with the archetype, and you will see the likeness, for the type must be like the reality. For that body preserves its former form, figure, and limitation and in a word the substance of the body; but after the resurrection it has become immortal and superior to corruption; it has become worthy of a seat on the righthand; it is adored by every creature as being called the natural body of the Lord.It was in the following remarks that we acquire a grasp on Andrewes’ theology of Eucharistic presence and his view of the doctrine of Transubstantiation. He said,
That even as in the Eucharist neither part is evacuate or turned into the other, but abide each still in his former nature and substance, no more is either of Christ’s natures annulled, or one of the converted into the other, as Eutyches held, but each nature remaineth still full and whole in his own kind. And backwards; as the two natures in Christ, so the signum and signatum in the Sacrament, e converse. And this latter device, of the substance of the bread and wine to be flown away and gone, and in the room of it a remainder of nothing else but accidents to stay behind, was to them not known, and had it been true, had made for Eutyches and against them. And this for the likeness of union in both.Andrewes rejected this opinion as an issue de fide but did not see it as a heresy. He did not take the Eucharistic celebration to be a transformation of the elements so much, though he clearly held to a sacramental presence via a sacramental change; rather he saw the Eucharist as the meal of recapitulation and as the principal gathering of the Church. His focal point was on the Synaxis rather than trying to figure out how we receive the body and blood in bread and wine. He merely accepted the reality that we do. He illustrated this by referring to the Eucharist as its name in antiquity and described the purpose of it.
Now for the word “gathering together in one.” It is well known the holy Eucharist itself is called Synaxis, by no name more usual in all antiquity, that is, a ‘collection or gathering.’ For so it is in itself; for at the celebration of it, though we gather to prayer and to preaching, yet that is the principal gathering the Church hath, which is itself called a “collection” too by the same name from the chief; for “where the body is there the eagles will be gathered,” and so one Synaxis begets another.
Andrewes quite pointedly focused on the relationship of our union with the Person Jesus and His being offered to us in participation of the Sacrament.
For there we do not gather to Christ or of Christ, but we gather Christ Himself; and gathering Him we shall gather the tree and fruit and all upon it. For as there is a recapitulation of all in Heaven and earth in Christ, so there is a recapitulation of all in Christ in the holy Sacrament. You may see it clearly: there is in Christ the Word eternal for things in Heaven; there is also flesh for things on earth. Semblably, the Sacrament consisteth of a Heavenly and of a terrene part, (it is Irenaeus’ own words); the Heavenly—there the word too, the abstract of the other; the earthly—the element.I found similar statements from Andrewes in a few other sermons on the Nativity. For example he writes,
Now the bread which we break, is it not the partaking of the body, of the flesh, of Jesus Christ? It is surely, and by it and by nothing more are we made partakers of this most blessed union…Because He [Christ] hath so done, taken ours of us, and that, to no other end, but that he might make the receiving of it by us a means whereby He might dwell in us and we in him; he taking our flesh and we receiving his Spirit, by his flesh which he took of us receiving his Spirit which he imparteth to us; that, as he is by ours became consors humanae naturae, so we by his might become consortes divinae naturae “partakers of the divine nature.” Verily, it is the most straight and perfect ‘taking hold’ that is. No union so knitteth as it. Not consanguinity; brethren fall out. Not marriage; man and wife are severed. But that which is nourished and the nourishment wherewith--they never are, never can be severed, but remain one forever. With this act then of mutual 'taking' taking of his flesh as he hath taken ours, let us seal our duty to him this day, for taking not Angels but the seed of Abraham.It was a day that Andrewes believed that what we celebrate in the Eucharist unites us to all that the Incarnation offers and we receive the fullness of it in the Sacrament. Andrewes rhetorically asks,
How is that? How shall we receive Him? Who shall give Him us? That shall One That will say unto us within a while, Accipite, “Take, this is My Body,” “by the offering whereof ye are sanctified [Matt. 26.26, 28].” “Take, this is My Blood;” by the shedding whereof ye are saved.” Both in the holy mysteries ordained by God as pledges to assure us, and as conduit pipes to convey into us this and all other the benefits that come by this our Saviour. Verily, upon His memorable days, of which this is the first, we are bound to do something in memory, or remembrance of Him. What is that? Will ye know what it is? Hoc facite, “Do this in remembrance of Me.”In his Isaiah 7.14 sermon He speaks of God’s special way of being cum ‘with’ us in prayer and praises etc. These are all well, says Andrewes, but they are not all the ways God is with us.
That hath a special Cum of itself, peculiar to it. Namely, that we be so with Him, as He this day was ‘with us;’ that was in flesh, not in spirit only. That flesh that was conceived and this day born, (Corpus aptasti Mihi,) that body that was this day fitted to Him. And if we be not with Him thus, if this His flesh be not “with us,” if we partake it not, which was soever else we be with Him, we come short of the Im of this day. Im otherwise it may be, but not that way which is proper to this feast. This, as it is most proper, so it is the most straight and near that can be—the surest being withall that can be. Nihil tam nobiscum, tam nostrum, quam alimentum nostrum, ‘nothing so with us, so ours, as that we eat and drink down,’ which goeth, and growth one with us. For alimentum et alitum do coalescere in unum, ‘grow into an union;’ that union is inseperable ever after.The doctrine of the real presence of Christ in the Eucharist is communicated in the shadows of the Incarnation of what it means for God to be with us in this rite.
This then I commend to you, even the being with Him in the Sacrament of His Body—that Body that was conceived and born, as for other ends so for this specially, to be “with you;” and this day, as for other intents, so even for this, for the Holy Eucharist. This, as the kindliest for the time, as the surest for the manner of being with.This sign is how we find Him and it is this same sign of humility in us when we are found by Him. Therefore in the Sacrament of the Eucharist we find the Christ-child. As the cratch carried the Christ-child who humbled himself in that state to give of Himself to us, so He is also humbling Himself in His being given to us in the cradle of Bread and Wine the glorified Christ who was praised by the Host of Angels at the cratch in the manger.
You say well, for that we have heard we may, but not for any sign we. Yes, for that too. The Sacrament we shall have besides, and of the Sacrament we may well say, Hoc erit signum. For a sign it is, and by it invenietis Puerum, ‘ye shall find this Child.’ For finding His flesh and blood, ye cannot miss but find Him too. And a sign, not so much from this here. For Christ in the Sacrament is not altogether unlike Christ in the cratch. To the cratch we may well liken the husk or outward symbols of it. Outwardly it seems little worth but it is rich of contents, as was the crib this day with Christ in it. For what are they, but infirma et egena elementa, “weak and poor elements” of themselves? Yet in them we find Christ. Even as they did this day in præsepi jumentorum panem Angelorum, ‘in the beasts’ crib the food of Angels;’ which very food our signs both represent, and present to us.
Andrewes did not use the word ‘impanation’ to describe his position of Eucharistic presence and why would he since Rome declared it a heresy? (I must say that it is true that Andrewes did all he could to make clear that he did not pretend to know how Christ was present in the Eucharist and did not probe too far into the mystery of it.) Not only would Andrewes refrain from using Osiander’s name for his view against Rome neither would he use it since other Reformers on the Continent had their turn with Osiander as well, including Calvin. Actually, the word ‘impanation’ does not come up until later in Church history and is used negatively to refute any sort of Consubstantationist position of presence. But the doctrine that the word sets forth to describe a view of how Christ is present in the Eucharist surely seems quite close to Andrewes’ own position on Eucharistic presence. If Andrewes is not holding to a view of impanation via a hypostatical union of the elements (bread and wine) ‘earthly’ and (Christ) ‘heavenly’ then it becomes painstakingly obvious that he comes very close to this opinion. It is questioned whether or not Berengarius held to this position of the hypostatic union of Jesus’ flesh and the elements. It is argued that what Berengarius held to was more of a Lutheran view of in, cum et sub pane. If impanation is not Andrewes’ unqualified position, there at least seems to be some sort of an amalgamation of the doctrine of impanation within the use of Christological language that seems to shape Andrewes’ theology of Eucharistic presence. But, I may be wrong and it's something mysteriously Patristic!