G. C. Brewer’s Review of “The Cup of The Lord”
Answered by J. D. Phillips - Number 4
“Continuing our review of the Phillips tract, we observe:
5. “Drink Ye All of (ek, out of) It.” Last week it was shown that the New Testament does not say that Christ gave it - the cup - to the disciples, but that He gave to them that which they were to drink. It was also shown that no one can say just how each individual received his portion - whether he took it into his mouth from a common cup or whether he first received it into his own separate cup. Even if they did all drink out of the same vessel, it no more makes that binding upon us than that fact that they reclined at the table makes it necessary for us to recline at the table when we partake of the emblems. But the author of the tract says that they all drank from, out of, the same vessel, and he bases an argument upon the preposition “of,” which is “ek” in the Greek. He says that “ek” means “out of,” and therefore they all drank out of one cup.”
It was not “shown” “last week” that “the New Testament does not say that Christ gave it - the cup - to the disciples.” You ignored the Greek idiom which requires an “it” after “He gave,” in Matthew 26:27, and you assumed that He did not give them the cup, but that He “gave to them that which they were to drink” - “the fruit of the vine.” Of course, He gave them “the fruit of the vine,” but He gave it to them in what the N. T. calls poteerion, and this word means “a cup, a drinking vessel.”
Neither was “it shown that no one can say just how each individual received his portion.” Christ gave the cup to them, saying, “You must all drink out of (ek) it” (Matthew 26:27); and “they all drank out of (ek) it” (Mark 14:23). “Ek with a genitive of the vessel out of which one drinks” (Thayer), “the vessel out of which one drinks” being poteerion, “a cup, a drinking vessel,” as he points out. Paul says so in so many words - “Let him drink (pino) out of (ek) the cup (poteerion)” (1 Corinthians 11:28).
When you prove that they “reclined at the table,” it will then be time for you to try to make an argument from it in favor of your cups law! They reclined at another supper.
“A sufficient answer to this is the fact that they all drank of that which came out of the same vessel which the Lord took up when He gave thanks. At some hotels a thousand persons each day drink soup or coffee out of the same boiler or pot, but they all use different cups in drinking.”
Yes, each disciple drank a part “of that which came out of the vessel (cup) which the Lord took up when He gave thanks.” But how did they do it? “Let him drink out of the cup” (1 Corinthians 11:28). This is part of what Paul “received from the Lord” (1 Corinthians 11:23). Here is what he received from the Lord”: “You must all drink out of it” (Matthew 26:27); and “they all drank out of it” (Mark 14:23) - “drink out of the cup” (1 Corinthians 11:28).
The “boiler or pot” from which soup or coffee is taken and poured into a bowl or cup is not “the vessel out of which one drinks” as is “poteerion, a cup, a drinking vessel.” Your “answer” is not an answer and is not “sufficient” for your cause.
“At this writing I am away from home and do not have access to any of my Greek lexicons, but, fortunately, I have a Greek Testament with me, and I can illustrate the uses of “ek.” Of course, “ek” does mean out of, from, etc., but, like all other words, it has different uses with these meanings as a basic idea. It not only signifies out of, as from the interior of a place, but it has to do with origin, cause, source, supply, etc. To eat of (ek) the bread certainly does not mean to eat out of the bread. Take the following references where the word “of” is from “ek” in the Greek and try substituting the phrase “out of” in each place, and see what nonsense you get: “I shall not drink henceforth of (ek, out of) this fruit of the vine,” etc. “But let a man prove himself, and so let him eat of (ek, out of) the bread, and drink of (ek, out of) the cup.” (1 Corinthians 11: 28.)”
Thayer answers his blundering on ek, citing the very Scriptures Bro. Brewer uses. He says, “of the supply out of (from) which a thing is taken, given, eaten, drunk, etc.” Under this he cites eating ek the loaf and drinking ek the well, etc. It is only in this sense that you and your guests drank coffee or water from the same pot or pitch.
Yes, ek may denote “from the inside to the outside,” i.e., “out of.” It may also denote source, origin, supply, etc. Hence, we eat of the loaf (ek, with supply, Thayer, p. 191), not “out of” as an ignoramus might say. And the disciples drank ek, out of, the cup (Mark 14:23 and 1 Corinthians 11:28), it being “the vessel out of which one drinks” (Thayer, p. 510).
He admits that poteerion does mean “a cup, a drinking vessel.” A “pot”, a “pitcher,” or a “boiler,” does not mean “a drinking vessel,” and hence he is throwing dust when he seeks to confuse his readers by using them. He betrays his ignorance of language, that’s all. It must make Calhoun, Baxter, Hardeman, Boles, et al, smile (or frown) to read his review. Better put him in the Grammar School.
“Suppose we take the title of our author’s tract and put “out of” for “of”: “The cup of the Lord” - “the cup out of the Lord.” Does the quibble on “ek” need any further attention?”
This is the worst blunder I have ever seen from any one. And it came from a big man - from G. C. Brewer! You better read that Greek Testament of yours. There is no ek in “The cup of the Lord.” Here is a transliteration of the Greek: poteerion Kuriou - “the cup of the Lord.” No ek there, my brother! You make more antics on ek than any sectarian ever made on eis (ice). And down you go!
When we drive the sprinkler from his hiding place and expose his every effort to sustain it by the Bible, he throws up his hands and exclaims, “Oh, it is a non-essential, anyway: baptism never saves anybody!” But I expected better things of my brother. He has “thrown up the sponge,” for he says, “Even if they did all drink out of the same vessel, it no more makes that binding upon us than the fact that they reclined at the table makes it necessary for us” to do so.
The brethren are on the job with their substituting, just like the Catholics did. Bro. Boles says in the Gospel Advocate of September 15, that the fact that the disciples used “unleavened bread” does not bind us to the same practice. Some say blackberry juice or watermelon juice will answer the purpose of “the fruit of the (grape) vine.” And it may not be “many moons” until meeting “on the first day of the week to break bread” (Acts 20:7) will be only an “incidental.” Some of the music brethren have already reached this conclusion. The Romanist says we can commune in one element - the loaf, only. And a pedo-Baptist excuses his sprinkling, thus: “As to the giving of the bread only to the laity, they may think that, in what is merely ritual, deviations from the primitive mode may be admitted on the ground of convenience, and I think they are as well warranted to make this alteration as we are to substitute sprinkling in the room of the ancient baptism.” Extremes meet. Will “many cups” finally lead the brethren to no cup, as is the case with the Catholic laity? Brethren, whither are we tending?
J. D. Phillips
Since the first article in reply to G. C. Brewer appeared in the O. P. A., several brethren wrote me requesting me to put this out in tract form, after it has appeared in the paper. There seems to be a strong demand for this, and as the first edition of “The Cup of the Lord” will soon be exhausted, there being about seventy copies left, I would like, very much, to put out a tract in reply to Brewer. But I have not yet recovered, financially, from the effects of publishing the tract reviewed by Brewer. For this Reasoner, I cannot possibly put out another one now. But if any brother, or a number of brethren, wish, to put the reply to Brewer in tract, I shall be glad to write an introductory article and give the MSS. free, and assist in circulating it. This would be a good work, as the Gospel Advocate refuses to let me reply to Brewer in its columns - they will not so much as publish a reply to Brewer’s misrepresentations!
J. D. Phillips
The brethren with whom I fellowship, in Lorenzo, Texas, and the brethren with whom Bro, J. W. Chism fellowships at a nearby place, have arranged with us to investigate two questions at Lorenzo sometime this year. Bro. Chism affirms:
“The Scriptures teach, that, When the church comes together to teach the Bible, that, the assembly may be divided into classes, and that women may teach some or all of these classes.”
I deny this, and affirm this one:
“The Scriptures teach, that, When the church comes together to teach the Bible, that the assembly must be taught in one group (i.e., without dividing into classes) by men teachers only, one speaking at a time.”
He, of course, denies.
He also affirms that two or more cups or drinking vessels may be used in the communion.
I deny this and affirm that we are limited to the use of one cup.
The brethren at and near Lorenzo will arrange the time. If interested, write: E. H. Cavin, Lorenzo, Texas.
J. D. Phillips