Tag: Eucharist

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If Christ’s Sacrifice is “Once-For-All,” Does the Mass Re-Sacrifice Him?

There are two or three objections that I commonly hear to the Sacrifice of the Mass, and I wanted to create something short and easy to memorize, so that you'll know what to say if people ask you (or, if these are questions you have, so you'll have an easy-to-remember answer). The objections are: Objection 1: Christ's Sacrifice on Calvary is Once-for-All (Hebrews 7:27), so the Sacrifice of the Mass denies the efficacy of Christ's Sacrifice, and effectively re-Sacrifices Him. Objection 2: Catholics and Orthodox sometimes describe the Sacrifice of the Mass as the "Unbloody Sacrifice," but "without the shedding of blood there is no forgiveness of sins" (Hebrews 9:22), so the Sacrifice of the Mass doesn't do anything (and certainly doesn't forgive sins). Objection 3: How can Catholics and Orthodox call the Sacrifice of the Mass the "Unbloody Sacrifice" and still claim to be consuming His Blood?

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The Hidden Eucharistic Meaning of “Not by Bread Alone”

In Matthew 4:4, Jesus says, “Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that comes from the mouth of God.” What does this have to do with the Eucharist? You may be inclined to say "NOTHING, He's talking about reading the Bible," or even "IT DISPROVES THE EUCHARIST, because it shows He uses eating imagery when He just means belief or Bible reading." But those answers are Biblically ignorant, since they're ignoring the context of Jesus' Old Testament quotation. It turns out, there's a Eucharistic dimension to His Scriptural quotations here that almost everyone misses.

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Is the Eucharist Necessary for Salvation?

Sandro Botticelli, The Last Communion of St. Jerome (1495)
Can Protestants be saved, given that they don't have the Eucharist? In John 6:53-55, Jesus speaks about the Eucharist in a way that seems to suggest that, without it, you cannot be saved: “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 you; he who 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." So should we conclude from this that the Eucharist is strictly necessary for salvation?

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The Catholic Mass in Scripture, the Early Church, and Today

Abraham Bloemaert, The Emmaus Disciples (1622)
In Luke 24:13-35, the two disciples on the road to Emmaus have a surprise encounter with the risen Lord, Jesus Christ. There are basically four "stages" of communion in this encounter, and it's the same four stages, in the same order, that we find in the earliest Christian worship, and that we see in the Mass today. So let's look at each of the four stages, and then consider why it matters that they should all follow the same structure and pattern....

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What if the Protestant Interpretation of John 6 is Correct?

"And he said unto them, The Sabbath was made for man, And not man for the Sabbath." Mark, II, 27.
Let’s talk about the Bread of Life discourse in John 6:22-70. The Catholic interpretation makes sense, but it's a shocking one. We think that this lengthy passage is about the Eucharist, and that Jesus Christ literally means that we eat His Flesh and drink His Blood in Communion. This teaching, radical to twenty first-century ears, was no less radical to first-century ears, and even many of Jesus’ own disciples stopped following Him upon hearing it. Protestants typically disagree with this interpretation, arguing that Jesus’ commands that we should eat His Flesh and drink His Blood are just metaphors. Often, both sides are so busy debating the credibility of the Catholic interpretation that neither stop to seriously ask, “Does the Protestant interpretation make any sense?” The obvious question is if Jesus is speaking metaphorically, what’s it a metaphor for? What is Jesus actually saying?

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