The Eucharist (as practiced by the Roman Church)

Discussion in 'Other Christian Denominations' started by 1Tim115, Jun 28, 2010.

  1. 1Tim115

    1Tim115
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    This morning, during prayer, I was halted to consider a catechism. It may have had much to do with a recent celebration of the Lord’s Supper at my local church.

    We know the doctrine our Baptist churches teach concerning this ordinance instituted by our Lord, Jesus Christ. Most of us are familiar with Matthew 26, Mark 14, Luke 22, teaching about the ordinance and both its symbolic and spiritual significance. Also, John 6 teaching symbolic and spiritual significance of receiving Christ as Lord.

    We also know how the Roman Church takes this scripture, particularly John and perverts it to a man instituted mystical dogma. The RC would have you believe, what is referred to as transubstantiation, that as the priest holds up the bread and wine, God changes it to the literal body and blood of Christ. They say, although you cannot see any change, taste any change, or smell any change, nor is there any shape change. They believe the substance has changed.

    Side note: The priest calls Christ down from above to inhabit the wine and bread? Are they subliminally attempting to say the priest or their church has power over Christ?

    The change the RC supports is in “substance” a level of change God had not created on this earth. This would be a level of change not available for observation within God’s creation. I am not arguing against the spiritual and supernatural abilities of Christ, the Father, or Holy Spirit but, reasoning against creation acting beyond how God created it without some detectable change.

    Quoting Julie L (RC), from discussions at another website, “No, I have never tasted the bread and wine before the consecration. But it would taste the exact same. Transubstantiation means that the bread and wine maintain their shape, color, taste, smell, etc. But that the substance has changed. Jesus is now present within it. Some say Jesus is hidden in the Eucharist.”

    http://www.therealpresence.org/eucharst/a.html
    “…it is a substantial presence by which Christ, God and man, makes himself wholly and entirely present.” - The Catechism of the Catholic Church: paragraph 1374

    How has God worked with creation in the past? God turned the Nile River into blood. However, in this miraculous transformation, the blood was observed to be blood by all. There were observable changes to appearance and composition which were recognized by God’s people and the Egyptians. Exodus 7:15-21.

    Now, the heart of my argument against the eucharist as performed in the Roman Church is this: that, when God miraculously changes His creation, it is observable to God’s people. When Jesus turned the water into wine, the change was observable. There was a recognizable change confirmed by the “governor.” John 2:1-11. When God provides change it is recognizable and it is self evident without further support. However, when men deceive or attempt deception, they must resort to distortion of truth and seek “support” for their “miracles.” When you lie, you must always create more lies and further fabrications to conceal the first lie.
     
  2. Zenas

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    Five writers and not one of them mentioned that Jesus was using metaphors or speaking figuratively. If Jesus ever cautioned that he was speaking of this metaphorically, the Bible doesn’t relate it. However, the most remarkable support for the doctrine of transubstantiation comes from Ignatius of Antioch, who was personally acquainted with John the Apostle. Here is what he said in his letter to the Smyrnaens:
    You would think that if this was metaphorical, John would have informed those around him, but he did not. Indeed, none of the early church fathers suggests that the Eucharist is anything but the actual body and blood of Christ. So where do we get the idea that it is symbolic?
     
  3. Peggy

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    Justin Martyr, Apology, I.66-67, 2nd century:
    Communion in the Body and Blood of Christ

    It is allowed to no one else to participate in that food which we call Eucharist except the one who believes that the things taught by us are true, who has been cleansed in the washing unto rebirth and the forgiveness of sins and who is living according to the way Christ handed on to us. For we do not take these things as ordinary bread or ordinary drink. Just as our Savior Jesus Christ was made flesh by the word of God and took on flesh and blood for our salvation, so also were we taught that the food, for which thanksgiving has been made through the word of prayer instituted by him, and from which our blood and flesh are nourished after the change, is the flesh of that Jesus who was made flesh. Indeed, the Apostles, in the records left by them which are called gospels, handed on that it was commanded to them in this manner: Jesus, having taken bread and given thanks said, ``Do this in memory of me, this is my body.'' Likewise, having taken the cup and given thanks, he said, ``This is my blood'', and he gave it to them alone.
     
  4. Dr. Walter

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    First, no writer says, "hey look at the metaphors, similies, parables, allegories that the other writer is using."

    It is the immediate and overall context that determines whether someone is speaking metaphorical, allegorical, figuratively.

    It is obvious that Jesus is speaking metaphorically in John 6 as he begins this discussion with the manna that fell in the wilderness which was LITERAL and yet claimed He was that manna. That is what a metaphor does, it makes a direct assertion that one thing is another thing. "I am the true vine" is a metaphor just as "I am the bread of life" is a metaphor.

    Furthermore, in John 6:35 he defines coming, and eating and drinking to be metaphors of simply believing in him:

    And Jesus said unto them, I am the bread of life: he that cometh to me shall never hunger; and he that believeth on me shall never thirst.

    Jn 6:47 Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on me hath everlasting life. 48 I am that bread of life.


    Jesus had not gone to the cross yet, his blood was still flowing in his own veins. The Lord's Supper had not even been instituted yet but he is calling on them RIGHT NOW to believe (drink, eat) of Him. Drinking and eating are merely used here as metaphors of PARTAKING of him by faith through believing HIS WORDS:
    At the conclusion of this talk Peter interpreted that it was his "words" contained "eternal life" and thus it was merely believing in what he told them that conveyed eternal life.

    Jn. 6:67Then said Jesus unto the twelve, Will ye also go away?
    68 Then Simon Peter answered him, Lord, to whom shall we go? thou hast the words of eternal life.



     
  5. Agnus_Dei

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    The Sacrament as being "symbolic" is purely a modern interpretation that began sometime after the Reformation era, as many of the leaders of the Reformation held the view of the Real Presence...
    So that we don't get confused, I'm not a RC...I'm an Orthodox Christian, so I'm speaking from the Orthodox perspective, as we also believe in the Real Presence, only we don't go as far as the RCC and try to define the Mystery in regard to "transubstantiation"
    Per our Divine Liturgy, the priest calls down from above the Holy Spirit...who then works the Mystery of changing the elements in the Body and Blood of Christ.

    Note: The Orthodox Church and the RCC both differ in our Sacramental theology, in regard to the priesthood.
    No, no one has "power" over Christ...it would be good for you to understand the role of a priest in the Orthodox Church anyway...

    By reading up on the Sacramental theology of the Church, you'll get a better understanding and answers to your questions.
    Again, as an Orthodox Christian, you will not find any theological definitions in regard to our Eucharist...we regard this Sacrament as a great Mystery and leave it at that...in the West, a definition/explanation has to be given for everything...to say that "we just don't know HOW this change takes place, other than we take it on faith"...isn't good enough. and it wasn't good enough for many of Christ's followers in St. John chapter 6...

    In chapter 6 of St. Johns Gospel we read of a multitude of Christ's Disciples that left Him concerning His Bread of Life teaching...claiming it was a "hard teaching" to understand...especially since the Jews knew their OT teachings and the forbidding, in essence of the eating of flesh and drinking of blood, but this is exactly what Christ was teaching, as He was in the Temple...mind you.

    Christ, being a "rabbi" meaning "teacher" and teaching inside the Temple would've made every attempt to clear up any miscommunication, as per John Chapter 6, Christ had to repeat Himself numerous times and even His own inner circle still had problems interpreting His teachings...funny that Christ even told them, His handpicked 12, that in essence, if this is a teaching they can't accept, they were free to go...

    I believe that even though, the teaching was hard to understand then, all became a reality on the eve of His crucifixion when Christ preformed the first Eucharistic Mystery with the 12 at the Last Supper...by taking bread, blessing and breaking it..."take eat...this is My Body" and taking wine, blessing it "take drink...this is My Blood".

    In XC
    -
     
  6. lori4dogs

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    When I first left the Baptist church for the Catholic Church I was filled with excitement because of the life changing properties I experienced in the Eucharist. I shared this with my former Baptist pastor. He said he wondered why there were so many Catholics who go to communion every week that were not changed. I believe Thinkingstuff has shared some of these same concerns regarding the sacraments.

    In Marks gospel we find that the woman who came up behind Jesus and touched His tunic was healed. After the woman 'fessed up' Jesus tell her that 'her faith had healed her'. There were many people crowded around Him, yet it was one womans faith that led to the release of His grace and her healing. Maybe all those other people crowding around Him that day were just 'going through the motions.' (Know any of these?) Doesn't St. Paul say to discern, properly, the Lords Body at His table? Jesus will work through His sacraments if we allow Him. Many committed Christians have written much since the founding of His Holy Church on how to prepare ourselves to receive Holy Communion. In St. Mark's Gospel, too many were just following the crowd and having no idea who it was they were getting close to or understood what He was offering to give them.
     
  7. ReformedBaptist

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    Thanks for the insight. I think its a very good observation judging the idea of the papal doctrine by Scripture. Thank God for the Scriptures. If we did not have them, we would be in the dark as to these things.
     
  8. 1Tim115

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    Matthew 26:26 And as they were eating, Jesus took bread, and blessed it, and brake it, and gave it to the disciples, and said, Take, eat; this is my body.
    Matthew 26:27 And he took the cup, and gave thanks, and gave it to them, saying, Drink ye all of it;
    Matthew 26:28 For this is my blood of the new testament, which is shed for many for the remission of sins.

    It doesn't say here that Jesus tore off His flesh and fed it to them. It doesn't say that He dripped His blood from the torn flesh into a golden cup either. He was present and completely whole and the flesh and blood were as figurative as you can possibly come to figurative without having it tatooed into your flesh.
     
  9. Zenas

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    This only shows your deliberately narrow and linear thinking. Of course Jesus didn’t rip off His flesh or bleed into a cup. But don’t you think Jesus could reproduce His flesh and blood into any object and form He willed it to be and as many of those objects and forms as He wanted? If you don’t believe that, you are denying the omnipotence of God.
     
  10. ReformedBaptist

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    Do you believe God can lie, cheat, steal, and murder? If you don't believe He can, then are you denying the ominipotence of God?

    Can God make a rock too big for Him to lift?

    Please try reasoning on logic and not absurdities.
     
  11. RAdam

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    The manna was a type of Christ. It was something literal that was also a picture of Jesus Christ. God, by sending down that manna in the wilderness, was saying that one day He would send down the true bread of heaven, Jesus Christ. Now Christ is true bread for us, and we are able to feast on Him continually. This is speaking of spiritual things, not natural things. His flesh is meat indeed, spiritual meat. Jesus told those folks "labour not for the meat which perisheth, but for that meat which endureth unto everlasting life, which the Son of man shall give unto you, for him hath God the Father sealed." He goes on to tell them He is the bread of life and that "he that cometh to me shall never hunger." What is He talking about? Spiritual things. He goes on to tell them that His flesh is meat indeed and His blood is drink indeed. He is not talking about the Lord's Supper/Communion/Eucharist. He's talking about being spiritually nourished on the things of Christ. You and I are able to do that today sitting under gospel preaching, reading our bibles, praying unto the Father. We are able to be nourished by Christ.

    The unleavened bread and wine of Communion is a picture of something else. It is a picture of the Lord's death. When we take part in it we "shew the Lord's death till he come." You don't partake in the Lord's death till He comes, you show it. It is a picture of something. However, it is more than merely a ritual. Like in baptism, though it is a picture, we are stating something when we partake. We are stating our faith in the Lord's death and resurrection and it's efficacy in removing our sins. We are stating that we believe He died for us, rose again for us, and we are saved by Him. We are stating that we want to dedicate our lives to His service and feast on Him and be partakers of those blessings.

    God could change the bread into the literal body of Christ, but He doesn't. We are never told to eat or drink the literal body of Christ. We are told to spiritually feast on the blood and body of Christ. Christ satisfies the soul.
     
  12. Zenas

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    I am not "reasoning" at all, or trying to play word games. Anyone who doesn't believe Jesus can reproduce Himself millions of times into any form He wishes is denying the power of God. It is you, not I, who is dealing in absurdities by playing word games.
     
  13. Dr. Walter

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    Your argument makes about as much sense as denying God is omnipotent if He can't reproduce another God or create a rock heavier than he can lift. There is no scriptural support for transubstantiation or Consubstantiation.
     
  14. ReformedBaptist

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    What Dr. Walter said...
     
  15. RAdam

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    Just because God can do something doesn't mean that He does or will do something. God could save the entire human race from eternal hell, but the bible clearly declares that He won't.
     
  16. Zenas

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    If there weren't I wouldn't be participating in this discussion. Show me where the Bible says the bread and the cup represent the body and blood of Christ. Just give me a citation.
     
  17. RAdam

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    I Corinthians 11:26 - "For as often as ye eat this bread, and drink this cup, ye do shew the Lord's death till he come."
     
  18. Tom Butler

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    I have this image in my mind. It is that of Jesus in the Upper Room. He takes the bread in his hand of flesh. He describes the bread as his body (or his flesh). Keep in mind that he calls it such while it is still in his hand. His hand looks like flesh. The bread still looks like bread.

    In this image I have, I do not hear Jesus saying, "this will turn into my flesh." I hear him saying it is already his flesh. He does not say it will change properties when it is ingested. He says the bread which he holds in his fleshly hand is his body. Still looks like bread.

    Same with the cup. In my image, a living, breathing Jesus who has blood flowing through his veins, takes the cup and describes its contents as his blood. Keep in mind that he calls it blood while it is still wine (or grape juice). The wine looks like wine, not blood. He does not say it will become his blood when it is ingested. He says it is already his blood. Still looks like wine to me. I suspect that it tasted like wine, not blood, when it was ingested.

    In my mind's eye, I can imagine some of the eleven looking at each other, and remembering what God told Moses: "The life of every creature is in its blood. That is why I have said to the people of Israel, ‘You must never eat or drink blood, for the life of any creature is in its blood.’ Lev 17:14 They whisper to each other "He just said there's blood in that cup and he wants us to drink it? He actually said it was his blood in that cup. And he actually said that was his flesh in his and and we were to eat it. Yuk."

    So, was it real blood and real flesh while it was in his hands, or did it happen after it was ingested? If it happened after ingestion, then Jesus was speaking metaphorically, wasn't he?

    Maybe I've let my imagination run too far. I'd like to see this transubstantiation happen. The medical technology is available for us to insert a camera inside us and follow that wine and bread down the hatch, and record the actual moment it happens. That would really be spectacular, wouldn't it? And it would certainly settle the argument.
     
    #18 Tom Butler, Jun 29, 2010
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 29, 2010
  19. Dr. Walter

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    You make an excellent point that Jesus said it was blood and flesh while still in his hand. He didn't say it "shall be" but it is. Now either it was actual blood and flesh while still in his hand or he was speaking metaphorically and if he was speaking metaphorically that is the end of transubstantiation and consubstantiation.
     
  20. Agnus_Dei

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    or the image of me being in the upper room and recalling this hard teaching of Jesus saying, very bone headedly:
    Most assuredly, I say to you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink His blood, you have no life in you. Whoever eats My flesh and drinks My blood has eternal life, and I will raise him up at the last day. For My flesh is food indeed, and My blood is drink indeed. He who eats My flesh and drinks My blood abides in Me, and I in him. (John 6:53-56)​

    then hearing Christ in the upper room:
    Jesus took bread, blessed and broke it, and gave it to the disciples and said, “Take, eat; this is My body.” Then He took the cup, and gave thanks, and gave it to them, saying, “Drink from it, all of you. For this is My blood of the new covenant, which is shed for many for the remission of sins. (Matt 26:26-28)
    then thinking...wow...it all makes sense now...what Jesus was teaching us in the Temple...it's now a reality in the upper room!!!

    even St. Paul who wasn't even there for any of it was taught this very reality and understood it perfectly clear:
    The cup of blessing which we bless, is it not the communion of the blood of Christ? The bread which we break, is it not the communion of the body of Christ? For we, though many, are one bread and one body; for we all partake of that one bread. (1 Cor 10:16-17)​

    and this reality is carried on in the First Ecumenical Council:
    “At the Divine Table we should not see simply the bread and the cup which have been offered, but raising our minds high, we should with faith understand that on the sacred Table lies the Lamb of God Who takes away the sins of the world, Who is offered as a Sacrifice by the priests; and truly receiving His Precious Body and Blood, we should believe that this is a sign of our Resurrection.”​


    In XC
    -
     

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