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What is the Baptist interpretation to "Eat My Fles

Discussion in 'Other Christian Denominations' started by faith in the south, Apr 29, 2006.

  1. faith in the south

    faith in the south New Member

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    Im not a Priest a Theologist, but for where I remember, The Jews in the Easter eat a Lamb remembering the Old Testament. God sayed Jesus was the Lamb Of God, he was to be sacrified for us.
    As well, the same thing happened to Abraham, he was about to kill his only son, a total nonsense!! but the Faith of Abraham gained the promise os salvation to his descendants.
    God made the nonsense, he sacrified his only son for us. Jesus was the Lamb of God for the first Easter: the Institution of the Eucaristy in the last supper. So what was the Lamb of God, is now the Bread and Wine that becomes the Body of Christ
     
  2. Joseph_Botwinick

    Joseph_Botwinick <img src=/532.jpg>Banned

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    Im not a Priest a Theologist, but for where I remember, The Jews in the Easter eat a Lamb remembering the Old Testament. God sayed Jesus was the Lamb Of God, he was to be sacrified for us.
    As well, the same thing happened to Abraham, he was about to kill his only son, a total nonsense!! but the Faith of Abraham gained the promise os salvation to his descendants.
    God made the nonsense, he sacrified his only son for us. Jesus was the Lamb of God for the first Easter: the Institution of the Eucaristy in the last supper. So what was the Lamb of God, is now the Bread and Wine that becomes the Body of Christ
    </font>[/QUOTE]So, let's recap here:

    1. Jesus is not literally a lamb

    but

    2. but he is a piece of bread and a cup of wine.

    Makes perfect sense.

    Joseph Botwinick
     
  3. faith in the south

    faith in the south New Member

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    Ok.
    When you say Im Joseph, you mean you are not John, if you say both things, literaly, you are mixing things. But if you say Joseph, and "arquitect", or "son of Michael" or "Baptist", or "the LionHeart", those things can be together.
    Jesus is a deep mistery, (wich is not darkness, is light, so trong that our eyes get almoust blind) what we can see and understand is very little. Thats why we needed the revelation.
    He is Jesus, and he called himself in several ways for us to undestand him better. He used several ways to help us get more close to the Mistery.He called himself "Son of Man", refering to the Old Testament, and he called himself "Lamb of God", he was the Lamb of God, literaly, refering also to the Old Testament. This doesnt mean he was a Lamb!! no!! it was a literaly expresion.
    But when St Paul after Jesus death in 1 Cor 23-29 and in many other parts of the Bible, says the Bread becomes the Body of Christ, this is it. Literaly!!, its not just an expresion, its a reality.
     
  4. DHK

    DHK <b>Moderator</b>

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    Does the Bible say that he is a mystery.
    Or is this just RCC unbiblical teaching?
    You have contradicted yourself. It was a figurative expression. He wasn't literally a lamb. He didn't look like the picture that Joseph showed you. It is a figurative expression.
    Jesus said "I am the door" Literal or figurative? What did he look like?
    Jesus said "I ma the bread of life" Literal or figurative? What did he look like?
    Jesus said "I am the manna that came down from heaven" Literal or figurative? What did he look like?

    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.
    "Jesus took bread...said, Take, eat; this is my body."
    Literal or figurative? What did he give to his disciples, and what did it look like?
    DHK
     
  5. Brother Bob

    Brother Bob New Member

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    This undoubtably is the silliest post I seen yet. Especially when He speaks of eating His flesh He even gives us an example.

    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. WoW!!
     
  6. BobRyan

    BobRyan Well-Known Member

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    It is the "faithLESS" Jews that take Christ too literally when he uses the term bread metaphore. HE is not in fact - "bread".

    How sad.

    Cannibalism is still wrong.

    How true.

    Now I don't want to give the impression that just because anyone's favorite church magesterium teaches something - it is in error. This is not true any more than it is true that just because the Hebrew magesterium taught something - it must be in error.

    Rather it is important to read the teaching and "SEE IF THOSE THINGS ARE SO" - SEE if they are using EISEGESIS (Injecting their own error INTO the text) or EXEGESIS (Letting scripture speak CLEARLY for itself - IN CONTEXT) through the personal teaching and touch of God the Holy Spirit on each of us 1John 2:27.

    In this matter - as with the early followers of Christ - pre-CROSS, we have only the INFALLIBLE God to lean on - and the unfailing promises..

    ======================================================

    The discussion in John 6 does not have Christ saying "SOMEDAY soon it will be true that my flesh - at that time - is bread and my blood - at that time is drink".

    Christ argues that His FLESH IS food - the bread of life and His blood IS drink and that eating His flesh IS ALREADY the condition for obtaining eternal life. He does not say "SOMEDAY it WILL be".

    And of course Christ concludes the talk by turning to the disciples and saying "of course you realize that in this discussion - literal flesh is worthless".

    In fact - Christ then goes on to chastise the disciples for being "too literal" with the symbol of "bread" as recorded in Matt 16:6-7.

    The symbol of "manna" - "bread from heaven" that Christ uses for himself John 6:50-51 uses the exact same "meaning" as Christ gives this talk in John 6:63.

    The manna's meaning is provided in Deut 8:3 - a perfect match with Christ's summary in John 6:63 and Peter's OWN conclusion in John 6:68 - all three on in agreement as to the symbol and its meaning. And this is in perfect harmony with the fact that Christ insisted that this principle was "ALREADY true" and yet nobody took a bite out of Christ's arm or opened up a vein for a drink. The meaning was "made clear" to his followers and as we see from Peter's statement in vs 68 - he got it.

    The "problem" in the dialogue on John 6 is invariably the refusal of RC posters to pay attention to the details of the Gospel accounts on the subject of Christ's use of the symbols.

    "Details" typically ignored in the Catholic argument --

    #1. In John 6 Christ DOES NOT say "some day in the future my FLESH WILL become food" nor "some day in the not too distant future my blood WILL BECOME drink"!! He argues that IT ALREADY IS!! Right then and THERE that the bread ALREADY came down from heaven AND ALREADY those who would have eternal life must be eating His Flesh!!

    The RC argument "NEEDS" the text to say "SOME day in the NEAR future my flesh WILL become food for you to really eat". It does not!!

    #2. Christ is on record as chastising the disciples for taking the symbol of bread TOO Literally!! IN Matt 16:6-12 He argues that it represents TEACHING and they thought it was REALLY BREAD!!

    #3. ONLY the FAITHLESS discples of John 6 take him soooo literally that they think they must BITE CHRIST!!

    #4. Christ HIMSELF offers the "interpretation" by saying that LITERAL FLESH "is WORTHLESS" when eaten -- but it is HIS WORD digested in the soul that has REAL true LIFE!!. John 6:63

    #5. In the entire John 6 discussion the ENTIRE POINT of the Flesh and blood is to gain "LIFE". Then Christ shows that for gaining LIFE - ONLY HIS WORD has SPIRIT AND LIFE and that literal flesh is WORTHLESS (in terms of literally eating something and having it make you live forever)!!

    #7 In John 1 - the CONTEXT is established "THE WORD BECAME FLESH" in John 6 the point is made again that the BREAD of heaven CAME DOWN as in the case of manna in the days of Moses. (Where we see that EVEN Moses argues the point using the SAME symbol of BREAD coming down from heaven - "MAN shall NOT live by bread alone but by EVERY WORD that proceeds from the Mouth of God" Deut 8:3]

    Christ appeals to this SAME symbol in John 6 -- bread coming down out of heaven AS in the days of Moses


    #8. When Peter speaks about the faithful disciple’s view in John 6:68 he simply RESTATES Christ’s OWN interpretation given in vs 63 saying “YOU have the Words of LIFE” – he says nothing about “we have decided to stay and bite you” as instructed. NOR does he say “we have decided to stay and WAIT for that FUTURE day when you WILL have life in your flesh so we can bite it”.

    All of these steps to ignore what is in the chapter must be combined to cut-and-paste from the chapter in snippets and still get "what one wants" to find from it.

    But - it must be noted that many will not take those steps. What then? What if someone is paying attention to the above list? How will the case be made for the Eucharist from John 6 in that situation?


    ======================================

    Now let's read the infallible text below.

    ===============================================

    &gt; From: John 6:51-58
    &gt;
    &gt; The Discourse on the Bread of Life (Continuation)
    &gt; -------------------------------------------------
    &gt; (Jesus said to the Jews,)
    [51] "I am the living bread which came down
    &gt; from Heaven; if any one eats of this bread, he will live for ever; and
    &gt; the bread which I shall give for the life of the world is My flesh."
    &gt; [52] The Jews disputed among themselves, saying, "How can this Man
    &gt; give us His flesh to eat?"
    [53] So Jesus said to them, "Truly,
    &gt; truly, I say to you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and
    &gt; drink His blood, you have no life in you;
    [54] he who eats My flesh and
    &gt; drinks My blood has eternal life, and I will raise him up on the last
    &gt; day.
    [55] For My flesh is food indeed, and My blood is drink indeed.
    &gt; [56] He who eats My flesh and drinks My blood abides in Me, and I in
    &gt; him.
    [57] As the living Father sent Me, and I live because of the
    &gt; Father, so he who eats Me will live because of Me.
    [58] This is the
    &gt; bread which came from Heaven, not such as the fathers ate and died; he
    &gt; who eats this bread will live for ever."
     
  7. BobRyan

    BobRyan Well-Known Member

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    Now let's APPLY the INFALLIBLE rule of Acts 17:11 recommended by the early Church Father - APOSTLE PAUL - the "eisegesis" below.

    &gt;
    &gt; ***********************************************************************
    &gt; Commentary:
    &gt;
    &gt; 49-51. The manna during the Exodus was a figure of this bread--Christ
    &gt; Himself--which nourishes Christians on their pilgrimage through this
    &gt; world.&gt;&gt;

    In fact what DOES the infallible text say that MANNA is to represent? What IS the LESSON of manna being taught - EXPLICITLY (no guessing) in scripture - because Christ DELIBERATELY chooses to REFERENCE the symbol of manna!

    Deut 8:2-3 "God has led you in the wilderness these forty years, that He might humble you, testing you, to know what was in your heart, whether you would keep His commandments or not. 3“He humbled you and let you be hungry, and fed you with manna which you did not know, nor did your fathers know, that He might make you understand that man does not live by bread alone, but man lives by everything that proceeds out of the mouth of the LORD.

    The symbolic lesson that manna was to teach - is RELIANCE NOT on LITERAL bread but on the WORD of God because THAT was true LIFE. Interesting that CHRIST chooses to DRAW this into His DIALOGUE in John 6 - let's see how He uses it.


    commentary&lt;&lt; Communion is the wonderful banquet at which Christ gives Himself to us: "the bread which I shall give for the life of the world
    &gt; is My flesh". These words promise the manifestation of the Eucharist at the Last Supper: "This is My body which is for you" (1 Corinthians
    &gt; 11:24). The words "for the life of the world" and "for you" refer to the redemptive value of the sacrifice of Christ on the cross.&gt;&gt;

    Notice that the reference to the FUTURE communion table is brought in by the commentary - but IN the John 6 text - Christ Himself makes NO reference to COMMUNION and Christ does NOT insist that SOMEDAY FUTURE Christ WOULD be turned into bread or Christ's flesh WOULD be food - rather Christ ASSERTS that HE IS THEN - PRE-CROSS and PRE-communion - HE IS THEN FOOD, BREAD, DRINK. These ARE the words of Christ and they are PRE- COMMUNION.

    Read the infallible words of Christ and learn from HIM.

    John 6:33Truly, truly, I say to you, he who believes has eternal life.

    Here Christ is telling us that the ACT that results in eternal life is LITERALLY believing.

    48“I am the bread of life.

    This is not a - "I WILL BE THE BREAD OF LIFE in a few days at the communion table".

    49“ Your fathers ate the manna in the wilderness, and they died.
    50 “This is the bread which comes down out of heaven, so that one may eat of it and not die.
    51 “I am the living bread that came down out of heaven; if anyone eats of this bread, he will live forever; and the bread also which I will give for the life of the world is My flesh.”

    Christ says he WILL give his flesh - but he already IS THE LIVING BREAD and He ALREADY CAME down from heaven as MANNA. Cleraly they were not seeing literal manna fall and speak to them in John 6.

    52Then the Jews began to argue with one another, saying, “How can this man give us His flesh to eat?”

    This listeners at least understood the tense - that Christ was CURRENTLY that bread of life.

    53So Jesus said to them, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink His blood, you have no life in yourselves.
    54“He who eats My flesh and drinks My blood has eternal life, and I will raise him up on the last day.
    55“For My flesh is true food, and My blood is true drink.
    56“He who eats My flesh and drinks My blood abides in Me, and I in him.

    All this is present or past tense indicating that the ACTION is true now and that some ALREADY HAVE eternal life BECAUSE they ARE eating and drinking. This is without reference to FUTURE communion.

    58“This is the bread which came down out of heaven; not as the fathers ate and died; he who eats this bread will live forever.”

    Now Christ moves clearly to PAST tense again in terms of WHEN the BREAD of heaven - MANNA CAME down. The MANNA illustration - EXPLICITLY brought into the John 6 text by Christ - teaches the following lesson - by the EXPLICIT statement of the infallible Word "Man does NOT live by bread alone - but BY EVERY WORD that comes from the MOUTH of GOD". Deut 8:2-4

    Notice that God has used this SAME illustration of EATING the WORD - as RECEIVING and BELIEVING in Ezek 2:

    8“Now you, son of man, listen to what I am speaking to you; do not be rebellious like that rebellious house. Open your mouth and eat what I am giving you.”
    9Then I looked, and behold, a hand was extended to me; and lo, a scroll was in it.
    10When He spread it out before me, it was written on the front and back, and written on it were lamentations, mourning and woe.

    Again in Ezekiel 3:1Then He said to me, “Son of man, eat what you find; eat this scroll, and go, speak to the house of Israel.”
    2So I opened my mouth, and He fed me this scroll.
    3He said to me, “Son of man, feed your stomach and fill your body with this scroll which I am giving you.” Then I ate it, and it was sweet as honey in my mouth.
    4Then He said to me, “Son of man, go to the house of Israel and speak with My words to them.
    5“For you are not being sent to a people of unintelligible speech or difficult language, but to the house of Israel,
    6nor to many peoples of unintelligible speech or difficult language, whose words you cannot understand. But I have sent you to them who should listen to you;
    7yet the house of Israel will not be willing to listen to you, since they are not willing to listen to Me. Surely the whole house of Israel is stubborn and obstinate.
    8“Behold, I have made your face as hard as their faces and your forehead as hard as their foreheads.
    9“Like emery harder than flint I have made your forehead. Do not be afraid of them or be dismayed before them, though they are a rebellious house.”
    10Moreover, He said to me, “Son of man, take into your heart all My words which I will speak to you and listen closely.

    Ok so Christ uses the symbol of Manna (Which God's word SAYS - teaches the lesson of LIVING by the WORD of God) AND that same illustration of God's WORD as FOOD is used again in Ezekiel. But is it REALLY REALLY the right interpretation for John 6 - Christ HIMSELF tells us.

    John 6:61“Does this cause you to stumble? 62“What then if you see the Son of Man ascending to where He was before?
    63 “It is the Spirit who gives life; the flesh profits nothing; the words that I have spoken to you are spirit and are life.
    64 “But there are some of you who do not believe.” For Jesus knew from the beginning who they were who did not believe, and who it was that would betray Him.
    65 And He was saying, “For this reason I have said to you, that no one can come to Me unless it has been granted him from the Father.”
    Peter’s Confession of Faith
    66 As a result of this many of His disciples withdrew and were not walking with Him anymore. 67So Jesus said to the twelve, “You do not want to go away also, do you?” 68Simon Peter answered Him, “Lord, to whom shall we go? You have words of eternal life.

    Notice that the commentary completely abandons the John 6 text at this point and only concerns itself with symbols of the OT sacrifices - this is fine - but does not show a context in John 6. They are reading this application into the text.

    Commentary&lt;&lt; In some
    &gt; sacrifices of the Old Testament, which were a figure of the sacrifice of Christ, part of the animal offered up was later used for food,
    &gt; signifying participation in the sacred rite (cf. Exodus 11:3-4). So, by receiving Holy Communion, we are sharing in the sacrifice of
    &gt; Christ: which is why the Church sings in the Liturgy of the Hours on the Feast of Corpus Christi: "O sacred feast in which we partake of
    &gt; Christ: His sufferings are remembered, our minds are filled with His grace and we receive a pledge of the glory that is to be ours"
    &gt; ("Magnificat Antiphon", Evening Prayer II).


    &gt;
    Commentary&gt; 52. Christ's hearers understand perfectly well that He means exactly
    &gt; what He says; &gt;&gt;

    Yes - taking Him literally here means walking up NOW and taking a BITE out of Him NOW or else not having true LIFE - NOW. This is the TENSE used by Christ. And it is TRUE using HIS own statments regarding the TRUE use of His WORD - it was TRUE THEN that they must DIGEST His WORD THEN and that if they did not - then RIGHT then - they did NOT have eternal life.

    commentary&lt;
    &gt; if they had understood Him in a metaphorical, figurative or symbolic sense there would be no reason for them to be surprised and nothing to
    &gt; cause an argument. Later, Jesus reaffirms what He has said—confirming what they have understood Him to say (cf. verses 54-56).
    &gt;
    &gt; 53. Once again Jesus stresses very forcefully that it is necessary to take a bite out of Him right then and there.

    Indeed He did! and That cause them much concern!

    Now the SWITCH is made in the commentary as IF Christ made ANY reference to communion in His talk

    Commentary &gt; receive Him in the Blessed Eucharist in order to share in divine life and develop the life of grace received in Baptism. &gt;&gt;

    This is the "problem" point were we now see doctrine being injected INTO the text - when clearly the text makes no such reference.

    Christ HIMSELF makes the SAME Bread/Teaching illustration in Matt 16:9-12 ONLY this time it is applied to the FALSE teaching of the MAGESTERIUM. Surely the commentary above will NOT choose to INJECT it's Eucharist teaching in Matt 16 because of the use of the LITERAL term "bread" and EATING.

    And so EVEN in John 6 - Christ makes the LITERAL interpretation At the END of the lesson -
    63“It is the Spirit who gives life; the flesh profits nothing; the words that I have spoken to you are spirit and are life.


    No parent is
    &gt; content to bring children into the world: they have to be nourished and looked after to enable them to reach maturity. "We receive Jesus
    &gt; Christ in Holy Communion to nourish our souls and to give us an increase of grace and the gift of eternal life" ("St. Pius X Catechism", 289).
    &gt;

    One could only wish that the commentary had APPLIED the ACTUAL Words of Christ to this discussion as HE HIMSELF states

    63“It is the Spirit who gives life; the flesh profits nothing; the words that I have spoken to you are spirit and are life.
     
  8. mcneely

    mcneely New Member

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    Ok. but wich part should we take literally and wich not?? Who has the Authority to take the Bible and determine it. </font>[/QUOTE]Actually, by the Catholic belief, it is the Catholic Church who has the authority to properly interpret scripture. Just a bit of advice, your arguments are very shaky. Before you try to effectively argue this, you might want to research a little more.
     
  9. mcneely

    mcneely New Member

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    The phrase "breaking of bread" in the New Testament was almost always applied to the Lord's Supper am I correct?

    If the Lord's Supper is such a sacrificial and supernatural act (not to take away from it's importance)wouldn't it be described as more than "Breaking of Bread"?
     
  10. faith in the south

    faith in the south New Member

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    Can you explain me what are you refering?
     
  11. faith in the south

    faith in the south New Member

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    [Jesus is a deep mistery,[/qb][/QUOTE]Does the Bible say that he is a mystery.
    Or is this just RCC unbiblical teaching?

    Well to answer you, we Catholics and Baptists believe in the Holly Trinity, wich is a Mistery, and I dont find in the Bible, the expresion "Holly Trinity", and Christ is the Second Person of the Holly Trinity, so he is part of the Mistery.


    Jesus said "I ma the bread of life" Literal or figurative? What did he look like?


    This is a reality. He is the Bread of Life, its literal and figurative. As well Jesus is "the Christ", this is literal and figurative.


    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.
    "Jesus took bread...said, Take, eat; this is my body."
    Literal or figurative?

    That was his body under the external appearence of Bread and Wine.
    The substance was the Body of Jesus, to our eyes hidden by the accidents of Bread and Wine.


    Let me explain this to you: If you paint a White Wall to Yellow, its an accidental change (only the White), cause the Wall still exists. But if you bring down the White Wall, not only the White desapears but the Wall itself, this is a substantial change.

    When the Priest Consagrates, there is a substantial change cause the Bread and Wine becomes de Body and Blood of Jesus, but the external accident still exist in the form of Bread and Wine, in other words the Wall disapears but the White not, still exist but just as an accident, not as a substante.
     
  12. JackRUS

    JackRUS New Member

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    Jesus is in His finite resurrected and glorified body. He is not for dinner, nor is He large enough to feed Christians for 2-3 thousand years.

    Besides as I pointed out in my earlier post. His body is not to see corruption. And of course that also includes any passing through the insides of a man and eventual destination at the sewage treatment plant.

    I have often wondered why Catholics haven't thought of this.

    Of course I know why, being an ex-Catholic, that the Church itself hasn't. It's because they have long taught that in order to receive Christ, one must receive their communion wafer, which conveniently enough is only available through them. That way they control the only franchise for salvation according to them and their deceived followers. They just loved this through the centuries.

    How it saddens me to see so many Catholics in my area going to church every day when they are old so as to hopefully receive enough wafers. Which of course the RCC never places either a number or a limit, please show up cash in hand.

    Faith in the south wrote:
    That is not what the official stance is in the RCC.

    "that by the consecration of the bread and wine there takes place a change of the whole substance of the bread into the substance of the body of Christ our Lord and of the whole substance of the wine into the substance of his blood. This change the holy Catholic Church has fittingly and properly called transubstantiation."

    http://www.gotquestions.org/transubstantiation.html

    On the subject of Transubstantiation. If the elements in the communion wine are totally changed during the priestly incantation, they why not the alcohol as well? Didn't Paul chide the Corinthians for getting drunk of communion wine during communion in 1 Cor. 11:21-22?

    Take and eat?
     
  13. stan the man

    stan the man New Member

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    Here is the history of the Doctrine of the Eucharist.
    In the early second century (before 110 A.D.), St. Ignatius of Antioch held that "the Eucharist is the Flesh of our Savior Jesus Christ." (1) In the middle of the same century, St. Justin Martyr distinguishes the Eucharist from "common" bread and drink and calls it "both the flesh and the blood of that incarnated Jesus." (2) A little later, St. Irenaeus writes, "The bread over which thanks have been given is the Body of (the) Lord, and the cup His Blood." (3)
    In the third century, Tertullian says that Jesus at the Last Supper took bread "and made it into His body by saying: 'This is My body.'" (4) Origen speaks of "receiving the Body of the Lord" and taking care "lest a particle of it fall." (5) St. Cyprian believed that "Christ is our bread, we who touch His Body." (6) Also, already in this period, ancient Christian liturgies, inscriptions and art (both eastern and western) bear plain witness to the Real Presence and even (in some fashion) transubstantiation.
    St. Athanasius, in the fourth century, maintained that:
    after the great and wonderful prayers have been completed, then the bread is become the Body, and the wine the Blood, of our Lord Jesus Christ. (7)
    St. Cyril of Jerusalem makes an almost identical statement (8) and rebukes those who question the Real Presence "even though the senses suggest to you the other." (9) St. Hilary of Poitiers deems the Eucharist "truly" Flesh and Blood, and suggests a connection between the denial of this and the rejection of the very Incarnation of Christ. (10) St. Basil the Great regards Communion as a "partaking" in the Body and Blood of Christ. (11) St. Gregory of Nyssa holds that
    "The bread . . . has been made over into the Body of God the Word," and that Christ in the Eucharist is "blending Himself with the bodies of believers." (12) St. John Chrysostom speaks of the priest as the representative of God in the Mass, exercising solely His power and grace, in order to "transform the gifts" which "become the Body and Blood of Christ." (13) Elsewhere he equates the Eucharist with Christ's "blood-stained" Body, "pierced by a lance." (14) St. Ambrose of Milan concurs in all these beliefs and refers to a transformation in which "even nature itself is changed." (15)
    In the early fifth century, St. Cyril of Alexandria likewise denies that the Eucharist is a "figure" (16) or "solely intellectual." (17) Lastly, St. Augustine, the greatest of the Fathers, writes that "Christ was carried in His own hands, when, referring to His own Body, He said 'This is My Body.'" (18) He expressly sanctions adoration of the consecrated Host:
    He took flesh from the flesh of Mary . . . and gave us the same flesh to be eaten unto salvation. But no one eats that flesh unless first he adores it . . . we do sin by not adoring. (19)
    St. Augustine repeatedly affirms the Real Presence and transubstantiation. (20)
    Often, Protestants cite St. Augustine's references to the Eucharist as a "sign," thinking that thereby he denied the Real Presence. But this is merely a weak false dichotomy, as the quotes above prove. It is entirely possible for something to be both a sign and reality simultaneously, and this is most emphatically the case with the Eucharist, just as, for instance, Jesus referred to His actual Resurrection as the sign of Jonah (Matthew 12:38-40), or His Second Coming as the sign of the Son of man in heaven (Matthew 24:29-31). St. Augustine, understanding the richness of biblical and Catholic symbolic imagery as few have before or since, alluded to this with regard to the Eucharist, never for a moment denying or doubting the Real Presence. This "double significance" is fully in accord with Catholic teaching and biblical norms.
    The first Christians of any note who denied the Real Presence were two French monks: Ratramnus (d.868), who deviated somewhat but not totally, and Berengarius (d.1088), who adopted a symbolic view which he later retracted. In the 12th and 13th centuries, the Cathari and Albigensians, - heretical sects influenced by the earlier Gnostics, Manichaeans and Docetists, repudiated it. In response to this threat, the Fourth Lateran Council in 1215 officially formulated dogmatically the fully-developed doctrines of transubstantiation, Real Presence, and the exclusive sacramental power of validly-ordained priests. John Wycliffe (d.1384) maintained a position on the Eucharist akin to that of Calvin - a "dynamic," or "spiritual" presence only (known as the remanence theory).
    Eastern Orthodoxy maintains a firm belief in the Real Presence, although it is reluctant to attempt any explanation of the manner of the change, thinking that this is impious and unnecessary. (21) Likewise, many Anglicans (such as C.S. Lewis) accept the Real Presence, especially those who call themselves "high church" Anglicans or "Anglo-Catholics." (22)
    Martin Luther, while rejecting the Sacrifice of the Mass, nevertheless held tenaciously to the Real Presence in the form of "consubstantiation," in which the two substances of bread and Christ's Body are present simultaneously, rather than one substantially changing into the other. In fact, he regarded those who denied the Real Presence (such as Zwingli) as heretics and non-Christians, "out of the Church," and applied to them some of the most graphic and scathing rebukes in his colorful linguistic repertoire. Even so, in his early period, around 1520, he himself was tempted to discard this view in opposition to Catholic dogma, (23) but found both the biblical evidence and the unanimity of Christian Tradition too unavoidable:
    I am caught; I cannot escape, the text is too forcible . . . I wrestled and struggled and would gladly have escaped. (24)
    It is very dangerous to assume that the Church which had existed for so many centuries, and had been the instructor of the whole of Christendom, should not have taught the true doctrine of the sacraments. (25)
    As late as 1543, Luther did not forbid anyone who believed in transubstantiation from joining his movement. (26) And, when asked whether Lutherans should do away with the Elevation of the Host in the liturgy, Luther consistently replied in 1544 (two years before he died):
    By no means, for such abrogation would tend to diminish respect for the Sacrament and cause it to be undervalued . . . If Christ is truly present in the Bread, why should He not be treated with the utmost respect and even be adored?
    Joachim, one of Luther's friends, added:
    We saw how Luther bowed low at the Elevation with great devotion and reverently worshiped Christ. (27)
    For these beliefs, Luther was accused by fellow Reformer John Calvin of being "half-papist" and of committing idolatry:
    He has sinned . . . from ignorance and the grossest extravagance. For what absurdities he pawned upon us . . . when he said the bread is the very body! . . . a very foul error. (28)
    Zwingli, Bucer, Oecolampadius, and Carlstadt (all Protestant Reformers) jettisoned the doctrine of Real Presence, and adopted a purely symbolic, commemorative view. John Calvin (and eventually Luther's right-hand man Philip Melanchthon) took an intermediate position, in which Christ is present in the Eucharist in some sort of profoundly spiritual and "dynamic" fashion, but not substantially, with Communion being efficacious only for the truly faithful, the elect, or the "predestined." At times, however, Calvin sounds (like Luther) almost Catholic:
    The Lord's body was once for all so sacrificed for us that we may now feed upon it, and by feeding feel in ourselves the working of that unique sacrifice . . . We are therefore bidden to take and eat the body which was once for all offered for our salvation . . .
    In this Sacrament we have such full witness of all these things . . . as if Christ here present were himself set before our eyes and touched by our hands . . .
    The Lord intended, by calling himself the "bread of life" . . . to teach . . . that, by true partaking of him, his life passes into us and is made ours . . .
    Nothing remains but to break forth in wonder at this mystery, which plainly neither the mind is able to conceive nor the tongue to express . . . Christ's flesh, separated from us by such great distance, penetrates to us, so that it becomes our food . . . the Spirit truly unites things separated in space . . .
    If the Lord truly represents the participation in his body through the breaking of bread . . . he truly presents and shows his body . . . By the showing of the symbol the thing itself is also shown . . . When we have received the symbol of the body . . . the body itself is also given to us . . . (29)
    It is remarkable and curious (from a Catholic perspective) that Calvin can conceive of and strongly espouse an ethereal supernatural impartation of Christ's "flesh" to us, which supercedes natural laws of space, yet feel compelled to go to the greatest lengths to denounce transubstantiation - whereby God transcends (primarily) natural laws of substance and matter - as inherently "monstrous" and absurd. From a purely rational, theoretical standpoint, neither concept is a priori any more difficult to believe than the other. Either scenario is perfectly possible for an omnipotent God.
    Calvin's theory is no more plausible, all things considered, than the traditional Catholic view. Yet at the same time Calvin (consciously or not) approximates many of the same dynamics of thought. His position might legitimately be regarded as inconsistent and illogical (especially given the above biblical proofs), yet whatever one thinks of it, the praiseworthy reverence and awesomeness which Calvin clearly retains must be respectfully acknowledged.
    Most Protestants today, especially evangelicals, pentecostals, and non-denominationalists, are inclined to accept the symbolic view, as first expounded by Zwingli, while many others (particularly Anglicans and Lutherans) fail to comprehend or accept the ostensible official creedal teaching of their own denominations. Thus, it is helpful for all Christians to freshly approach the Scriptures in order to objectively determine our Lord's teaching on this very important matter, which Catholics regard as the central purpose of Christians gathering together, the "Blessed Sacrament."
    FOOTNOTES
    1. Letter to the Smyrnaeans, 7,1. From Jurgens, William A., ed. and tr., The Faith of the Early Fathers (FEF), 3 volumes, Collegeville, MN: Liturgical Press, 1970, vol. 1, 25.
    2. First Apology, 66,2. Jurgens, FEF, vol. 1, 55.
    3. Against Heresies, 4,18,4 / 4,33,2; cf. 4,18,5. Jurgens, FEF, vol. 1, 95,97.
    4. Against Marcion, 4,40,3. Jurgens, FEF, vol. 1, 141.
    5. Homilies on Exodus, 13,3. Jurgens, FEF, vol. 1, 205-206.
    6. De dominica orat., 18. From Ott, Ludwig, Fundamentals of Catholic Dogma, tr. Patrick Lynch, Rockford, IL: TAN Books and Publishers, 1974 (orig. 1952 in German), 377.
    7. Sermon to the Newly Baptized. From Keating, Karl, Catholicism and Fundamentalism, San Francisco: Ignatius, 1988, 238.
    8. Catechetical Lectures, 19,7.
    9. Ibid., 22,1; 22,2; 22,6. Jurgens, FEF, vol. 1, 360-361.
    10. The Trinity, 8,14.
    11. Letter to a Patrician Lady Caesaria, 93; Liturgy of St. Basil the Great.
    12. The Great Catechism, 37. Jurgens, FEF, vol. 2, 49.
    13. Homilies on Judas, 1,6. Jurgens, FEF, vol. 2, 104-105.
    14. Homilies on 1 Corinthians, 24,4. Jurgens, FEF, vol. 2, 118.
    15. The Mysteries, 9,50-51; cf. The Sacraments, 4,4,14. Jurgens, FEF, vol. 2, 174-176.
    16. Commentary on Matthew (26:27). Jurgens, FEF, vol. 3, 220.
    17. Commentary on John, 10,2 (15:1). Jurgens, FEF, vol. 3, 223.
    18. Explanations of the Psalms, 33,1,10. Jurgens, FEF, vol. 3, 16.
    19. Ibid., 98,9. Jurgens, FEF, vol. 3, 20.
    20. E.g., Sermons, 227; 234,2; 272.
    21. See Ware, Timothy (Kallistos), The Orthodox Church, NY: Penguin Books, rev. 1980, 290.
    22. See F.C. Cross & E.A. Livingstone, eds., The Oxford Dictionary of the Christian Church, Oxford University Press, 2nd ed., 1983, 476; Johnstone, Verney, The Anglican Way, London: Mowbray, 1948, 30-31.
    23. Original Luther source: Letter to the Christians of Strassburg, December 14, 1524. Luther states with characteristic brashness: "I could thus have given a great smack in the face to Popery." From Grisar, Hartmann, Luther, tr. E.M. Lamond, ed. Luigi Cappadelta, 6 volumes, London: Kegan Paul, Trench, Trubner & Co., 1917, vol. 4, 492.
    24. Ibid.
    25. De Wette, M., Letters of Luther, Berlin: 1828, 5 vols., vol. 4, 559-60 / Letter to Philip Melanchthon in 1536.
    26. Ibid., vol. 5, 568 / Letter to the Evangelicals at Venice, June 13, 1543. From Grisar, ibid., vol. 3, 382.
    27. Luther, Martin, Table Talk, ed. Mathesius, (Leipzig ed., 1903), 341. From Grisar, ibid., vol. 4, 239-240.
    28. Letter of Calvin to Martin Bucer, January 12, 1538. From John Calvin: Selections From His Writings, ed. John Dillenberger, Garden City, NY: Doubleday Anchor Books, 1971, 47.
    29. Institutes of the Christian Religion, Book 4: chapter 17, sections 1, 3, 5, 7, 10.
    From tr. of Ford L. Battles, ed. John T. McNeill, Philadelphia: Westminster Press, 2 volumes, 1960, vol. 2, 1361-2, 1365, 1367, 1370-1371.
     
  14. Matt Black

    Matt Black Well-Known Member
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    That's a fair summary of the history and issues involved.
     
  15. JackRUS

    JackRUS New Member

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    Not that I give a hoot what any of the so-called church fathers think, especially since the Catholic Church held this sometimes spurious documents. I care what the Scriptures say.

    Especially since they contradict themselves unlike the Scriptures.

    As I posted in my first post:

    Tertullian (155/160-240/250 A.D.) spoke of the bread and wine in the eucharist as symbols or figures which represent the body and blood of Christ. He specifically stated that these were not the literal body and blood of the Lord. When Christ said, ‘This is my body,’ Tertullian maintained that Jesus was speaking figuratively and that he consecrated the wine ‘in memory of his blood’ (Against Marcion 3.19)...

    Clement of Alexandria (150-211/216 A.D.) also called the bread and wine symbols of the body and blood of Christ, and taught that the communicant received not the physical but the spiritual life of Christ.8 Origen (185-253/254 A.D.), likewise, speaks in distinctively spiritual and allegorical terms when referring to the eucharist.

    Eusebius of Caesarea (263-340 A.D.) identified the elements with the body and blood of Christ but, like Tertullian, saw the elements as being symbolical or representative of spiritual realities. He specifically states that the bread and wine are symbols of the Lord’s body and blood and that Christ’s words in John 6 are to be understood spiritually and figuratively as opposed to a physical and literal sense.
     
  16. Claudia_T

    Claudia_T New Member

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    So if somebody believes the wafer actually has the body of Christ in it, whats this supposed to do for you?


    Claudia
     
  17. Brother Bob

    Brother Bob New Member

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    You ask God through prayer to bless the bread and fruit of the vine to represent His Body and Blood as He did at the last supper. It worked for them why not for us?
     
  18. faith in the south

    faith in the south New Member

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    So the main problem between the Catholics and Orthodox on one hand and the Protestants on the other is the interpretation of the Bible.

    Ive posted this issue, "Eat my Flesh", well this can lead to many interpretations, wich is the true one? and why? cause nobody can say the Catholic teaching is not in the Bible, you can say the Catholics have a wrong interpretation of the Bible.

    I give you what I think is true: Jesus opened his apostles inteligences to interpretate the writings as the Bible says. Well the bishops are the successors of the Apostles, and the Pope is the Successor of Peter. So the Catholic and Orthodox churches, that holds Tradition, can explain this issue based on Revelation not accesible to our limited brain.
     
  19. riverm

    riverm New Member

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    If you think about it there’s really no logical parallel between the words “this is my body” and “I am the vine…door…etc” We can have images of a vine or door in a symbolical sense, for instance, Christ is like a vine b/c all the sap of our natural life comes from Him or a “door” b/c we go through Christ to get to heaven. A piece of bread otoh, is in no way like His flesh. Of the breads very nature the bread cannot symbolize the actual body of Christ. Moreover, Christ clears up any doubt by saying, “The bread that I will give is My flesh for the life of the world, and My flesh is meat indeed.”
     
  20. DHK

    DHK <b>Moderator</b>

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    Right. There is only one "interpretation. It is God's interpretation. And it is man's duty to find out what God is saying to man. This is God's revelation to mankind. It doesn't matter what you think or what any other man thinks. Put away your pre-conceived ideas and ask yourself: What is God saying in this passage. There is only one interpretation.

    There is only one interpretation of the Bible--God's. The only way to find out what that interpretation is, is to put away all other interpretations and use sola scriptura only. That is take this passage to the Lord in prayer and study to show yourself approved unto God, and allow the Holy Spirit to guide you in your study of the Word of God. Any outside influence (church fathers, catechism, magesterium, even other commentaries) will cloud your judgement. This is why sola scriptura is so important. The Bible interprets itself. The Bible does not contradict itself, but interprets itself. It has only one interpretation; God's interpretation. What is God saying in this passage? It doesn't matter what others say. What does God say?
    What you think is irrelevant. Only what God says is relevant.
    The disciples didn't have to interpret what Jesus said. They knew what he meant when he spoke directly to them. There was no interpretation involved. They all spoke the same language. They were not speaking in allegories to each other. It was plain "Greek" or possibly Aramaic.
    This really is what you think. It is not based on fact. It is not based on the Word of God. It is not of God. It is man-made tradtion and has nothing to do with the Scriptures. It can amply be demonstrated that Peter was not the first Pope but (if he was even in Rome) was there for less than two years, and was there only to be martyred by the Roman government. That is not much of a pope is it? There is no historical evidence whatsoever that Peter was a pope. It is imaginary belief held to by the Catholics.
    DHK
     
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