Martin Luther's Deutsche Messe was first celebrated on October 29, 1525, and the text was published the following year. I was surprised to see that for the consecration and distribution of the sacrament, he uses the order
- Consecrate the bread
- Distribute the Body of Christ
- Consecrate the wine
- Distribute the Blood of Christ
as opposed to the more familiar (at least to me) 1, 3, 2, 4.
He writes in the preface that he is trying to emulate the order of events described in the Bible:
Then the Office and Consecration proceeds, as follows: 'Our Lord Jesus Christ, in the same night' (i Cor. xi. 23 ff). I think that it would be in accordance with the Last Supper if the sacrament were distributed immediately after the consecration of the bread before the blessing of the cup. So say, both Luke and Paul: 'Likewise also the cup after supper.' Meanwhile, there might be sung the Sanctus in German or the hymn 'Gott sei gelobet', or the hymn of John Huss, 'Jesus Christus unser Heiland.' And after this should come the consecration of the chalice and its delivery, with the singing of whatever remains of the above-mentioned hymns, or of the Agnus Dei in German.
It seems that there are quite a few variations among Christians about what sequence is to be used. How should a church determine which order to follow? And, in particular, is there any reason to object to Luther's method here?