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V

That we are the Body of Christ.

AND why should I say that Christ hath clothed thee with Himself, when He hath joined thee so closely to Himself that He hath been pleased to make thee flesh of His flesh in the unity of the Church. Hear what the Apostle saith, expounding the testimony of the 65Scripture, And they two shall be one flesh. But I speak, saith he, concerning Christ and the Church.8585   Eph. v. 31, 32. Hereupon consider also in how wonderful a bond He hath united thee with Himself. The Apostle establisheth it, that thou art the body of Christ. Ye are, saith he, the body of Christ and members in particular.8686   1 Cor. xii. 27.

Keep therefore thy body and thy members with that reverence which is befitting, lest if thou wrong them by lightly entreating them, thou suffer a greater punishment for thine unworthy ill-usage of them, according to the greatness of the reward that would have been thine, if thou hadst used them aright. Thine eyes are the eyes of Christ. Therefore thou mayest not turn the eyes of Christ to behold vanity, for Christ is the Truth, and all vanity is contrary to the truth.8787   He plays on the likeness of the words vanitas and veritas. Thy mouth is the mouth of Christ. Thou oughtest not therefore to open, I say not only in slanders and lies but even in idle words, that mouth which should be opened only for the praises of God and the edification of thy neighbour. Be of this mind in respect also of the other members of Christ that are committed to thy charge.

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