By Lewis Bayly
6. To seal to us the assurance of everlasting life. Oh what more wished or loved than life! Or what do all men naturally either fear or abhor more than death? Yet is this first death nothing, if it be compared with the second death: neither is this life anything worth, in comparison of the life to come.
If, therefore, thou desirest to be assured of eternal life, prepare thyself to be a worthy receiver of this blessed sacrament. For our Saviour assures us, that "if any man eat of this bread, he shall live for ever; and the bread that I will give is my flesh, which I will give for the life of the world." (John vi. 51.) He, therefore, who duly eateth of this holy sacrament, may truly say, not only Credo vitam ternam, I believe life everlasting; but also, Edo vitam ceternam, I eat life everlasting. And indeed, this is the true tree of life, which God hath planted in the midst of the paradise of the church; and to eat of which he hath promised to give to every one that overcometh (Rev. ii. 7.)
And this tree of life by infinite degrees excels the tree of life that grew in the paradise of Eden; for that had his root in the earth, this from heaven; that gave but life to the body, this to the soul; that did but preserve the life of the living, this restoreth life to the dead. The leaves of this tree heal the nations of believers; and it yields every month a new manner of fruit, which nourisheth them to life everlasting (Rev. xxii. 2.) Oh, blessed are they who often eat of this sacrament; at least, once every month, taste anew of this renewing fruit, which Christ hath prepared for us at his table, to heal our infirmities, and to confirm our belief of life everlasting!