730. It is with the holy supper as with a covenant, which, after the articles of agreement are settled, is drawn up and finally executed with a seal. That the Lord's blood is a covenant, He Himself teaches; for when He took the cup and gave it, He said:
Drink of it, all of you; for this is My blood of the new testament (Matt. 26:27, 28; Mark 14:24; Luke 22:20).
"The new testament" means the new covenant; therefore the Word written by the prophets before the Lord's coming is called the Old Testament or Covenant, while that written after His coming by the evangelists and apostles is called the New Testament or Covenant. That "blood" as well as the wine of the holy supper means the Divine truth of the Word can be seen above (n. 706, 708), and the Word is the covenant itself which the Lord made with man and man with the Lord; for the Lord descended as the Word, that is, as Divine truth; and as this is His blood, so in the Israelitish church, which was representative of the Christian church, blood is called,
The blood of the covenant (Exod. 24:7-8; Zech. 9:11);
And the Lord a covenant of the people (Isa. 42:6; 49:8; Jer. 31:31-34; Ps. 111:9).
Moreover, it is in accordance with order in the world that there should be by all means a signature, in order that there may be some certitude, and that it should follow after deliberate action. What is a commission or a will without the signature? What is a legal decision without a decree signed to ratify the decision? What is a high office in a kingdom without a commission? What is promotion to any office if it is not confirmed? What is the possession of a house without purchase or agreement with the owner? What is progression to an end, or running to a goal, and thus for a reward, if there is no end or goal where the reward is to be gained; or if the judge has not in some manner made the wager sure? But these last have been added merely for the sake of illustration, that even the simple may see that the holy supper is like a signature, a seal, a badge, or a proof of appointment even to the angels, that those who come to it worthily are sons of God; and it is also like a key to the house in heaven where they are to dwell forever.