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Saturday, February 3, 2018

Is The Roman Catholic Eucharist Logical?

  • Allowing The Roman Catholic Catechism To Speak:
         -"In the New Testament, the memorial takes on new meaning. When the Church celebrates the Eucharist, she commemorates Christ's Passover, and it is made present the sacrifice Christ offered once for all on the cross remains ever present. "As often as the sacrifice of the Cross by which 'Christ our Pasch has been sacrificed' is celebrated on the altar, the work of our redemption is carried out." (CCC # 1364)
         -"By the consecration the transubstantiation of the bread and wine into the Body and Blood of Christ is brought about. Under the consecrated species of bread and wine Christ himself, living and glorious, is present in a true, real, and substantial manner: his Body and his Blood, with his soul and his divinity." (CCC # 1413)
  • Consider The Words Of Former Presbyterian Turned Roman Catholic Dr. Scott Hahn Concerning His First Encounter With The Eucharist:
         -"Then the Liturgy of the Eucharist began. I watched and listened as the priest pronounced the words of consecration and elevated the host. And I confess, the last drop of doubt drained away that moment. I looked and said, "My Lord and my God." As the people began going forward to receive communion, I literally began to drool, "Lord, I want you. I want communion more fully with you. You've come into my heart. You've become my personal Savior and Lord, but now I think You want to come onto my tongue and into my stomach, and into my body as well as my soul until this communion is complete." ("Rome Sweet Home")
  • A Detailed Logical Critique Of Roman Catholic Transubstantiation:
       1.) If the Sacrament of the Eucharist really confers supernatural grace to the Roman Catholics who consume it, then why do so many of them still continue living their ordinary, sinful lifestyles (Titus 2:11-12)? Where in Scripture do we even find any mention of physical objects and formulaic rituals that have the capability of transferring God's grace to people? 

       2.) Why would somebody want to eat human flesh and drink human blood? Is not cannibalism a sure sign of spiritual apostasy (Leviticus 26:29Deuteronomy 28:53-57Ezekiel 5:10)? Does not Christ already dwell fully in the bodies of believers through the presence of the Holy Spirit (John 14:17)? 

       3.) Scripture defines the "gospel" as believing from the heart in the death, burial, resurrection, and the appearance of Jesus Christ before five hundred witnesses (1 Corinthians 15:1-8). How come the Eucharist is never included in a biblical presentation of the gospel message? How come the earliest church creeds mention nothing about Roman Catholic transubstantiation as being an essential article of the Christian faith?


       4.) How does the so-called power of transubstantiation not imply that the authority of the parish priest is superior to that of our Lord Jesus Christ? Does he somehow become the creator of the Creator? Where in Scripture do we find miracles that take place without a trace of perceptible evidence?

       5.) If we must interpret the bread of life discourse in John 6 literally because our Lord Jesus Christ had stated six times to "eat His flesh and drink His blood", then why must we accept what Catholics say when they claim that the term "thousand years" in Revelation 20 is symbolic, yet repeated six times, in support of their amillennialism? How does repetition translate into literalness? What's with this faulty hermeneutical principle?

       6.) Did not Jesus Christ literally say that all who eat His flesh and drink His blood will receive everlasting life (John 6:54)--including unrepentant pagans and atheists? If we are going to be consistent with the literalist interpretation of the bread of life discourse, then should people who eat Christ's flesh and drink His blood (consecrated elements of the Mass) never physically hunger and thirst again (John 6:35)? Is this not absurd?

       7.) If Jesus' use of the Greek term "phago" (meaning to gnaw, chew, indicates a slow process) in John 6:54-58 decisively proves that we must interpret His words literally, then how come the disciples did not start consuming His flesh and drinking His blood on the spot? Would it not be more reasonable to view this passage as Christ demonstrating His superiority to the Torah (John 6:49-51), namely in that He can fulfill completely our spiritual hunger and thirst  (John 6:35-40)? Why ignore the analogy emphatically set forth in John chapter six--precisely that God had provided manna to the Israelites as deliverance from starvation, so He had sent Christ into the world as a sacrificial provision to deliver us from condemnation? Would that not be the meaning of Christ being the "bread from heaven"? So does not "eating His flesh and drinking His blood" mean coming to Him and accepting what He has done on our behalf? 

       8.) Notice what our Lord Jesus Christ stated concerning the communion elements, "this is my body...this is my blood..." Why didn't Jesus say of the bread and wine, "this becomes my body...this becomes my blood?"

     
   9.) What biblical basis exists to justify the notion that the sacrifice of Jesus Christ and the sacrifice of the Mass are "one in the same" (CCC #1367)? How can this be? What Scripture teaches that the work of Christ is "ongoing" (CCC #1405)? What did Jesus mean when He had said of His work, "It is finished" (John 19:30)? What does Scripture mean when it states that Christ does not need to offer sacrifices day after day like the high priests of the Old Testament did (Hebrews 7:27)?

        10.) If the host is truly the literal body of Jesus Christ, then should we expect that the bread wafer never becomes stale, moldy, or goes through the process of decomposition (Psalm 16:10; Acts 2:27)?


        11.) Would the priest be willing to consume the consecrated elements, if he knew that they had been saturated in poison (prior to the event of transubstantiation)?


        12.) Did not our Lord Jesus Christ specifically instruct us to serve a cup of wine with the bread during communion (Matthew 26:26-29; 1 Corinthians 11:27-29)? How come the Roman Catholic Church is not consistent with Scripture on this point?


        13.) If transubstantiation is true, then how is it that the Corinthian Christians, who were found guilty of abusing the Lord's Supper ceremony, had managed to become intoxicated with the wine (1 Corinthians 11:20-22)? Where was the change in "substance" that time? What passage of Scripture actually teaches transubstantiation? How does this process work?


        14.) If "this is my body" and "this is my blood" literally means that the bread and wine were transubstantiated into the body and blood of Christ, then does "this cup is the new testament" literally mean that the literal cup becomes a literal covenant (Luke 22:19-20; 1 Corinthians 11:25)? Was John the Baptist literally "Elijah" (Matthew 11:14)? Is not the sower literally the "Son of man" (Matthew 13:37-39)? Why not just admit that "is" can easily mean "this is representative of" or "this symbolizes"? What scriptural evidence do we have suggesting that the apostles had taken Jesus' words literally?


        15.) If the Lord's Supper was truly a Mass service, then how could Jesus be sitting there as the same time proclaiming the bread and wine to be His literal flesh and blood? Would He not be holding Himself? Would we not have an illogical scenario of Jesus Christ offering Himself for the sins of the world prior to the appointed time of the crucifixion?


        16.) If the human body of Christ is located in heaven at the Father's right hand, then how can it be at the same time in thousands of different places at Masses across the globe? How does this not violate His incarnation?


        17.) If the communion wafer is supposed to look identical after transubstantiation into the literal body of Christ, then why not also believe people when they claim to have the ability to transform us into inanimate objects such as iron (our appearances remain the same, yet our substances are drastically altered)? Should we believe the pope if he had just so happened to pronounce an ex-cathedra statement declaring that priests have the ability to transform squares into triangles, or both (without a perceptible change)? How is this outrageously ridiculous Romish doctrine of transubstantiation not violate the concrete nature of reason, commonsense, and reality?

        18.) How do advocates of the Eucharist explain the fact that Jesus Christ ate the same bread and drank from the same cup that the Church of Rome claims became His actual body and blood (Matthew 26:27-29; Mark 14:23-25; Luke 22:7-16)? Why would Jesus need to eat His own flesh and drink His own blood when He was already sinless (Hebrews 7:26-27)?


         19.) The tense of the Greek word "eat" as found in John 6:50-58 is aorist, proving the specific action to be done once for all and without duration. How then would we be able to eat His flesh and drink His blood repeatedly at each Roman Catholic Mass? Is this not contrary to any Catholic notion of Christ's atoning work being ongoing?

         20.) If a sacrifice needs to be repeated or is ongoing, then how does this not imply that its effectual power to redeem us from sin is insufficient (Hebrews 10:3-4)? What does Scripture mean when it states that Christ gave Himself up as a ransom for our sins "once for all" (Hebrews 10:10-14; 1 Peter 3:18)? Why would the atonement sacrifice of Christ need to be "re-presented"? Did not the Lord Jesus Christ Himself confess to using figurative language on the night of the Last Supper (John 16:25-30)?

7 comments:

  1. I find the comment of the former Presbyterian turned Catholic to be quite sickening.
    Cannibalism was a result of punishment from God when Israel continually turned their back on him. To think that this man was longing to literally eat and destroy his Creator, its really messed up.
    We know eating Christ flesh wouldnt do us any good John 6:63. But to re-sacrifice him would only put him to an open shame. Heb 6:6. To think that approx a billion people are deceived by this doctrine, what a shame.

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    1. Hello Justin,

      Oh, I agree that this Dr. Scott Hahn has got some pretty poor scholarship. Consider this well-written article from our friends at Triablogue:

      http://triablogue.blogspot.com/2007/05/snappy-answers.html

      Not only does Scripture tell us that cannibalism is a sure sign of spiritual apostasy, but both Testaments expressly forbid us from consuming blood. So the literalist interpretation of Jesus' words is untenable.

      Also, allow me to comment a bit on the Catholic apologetical distinction between "re-sacrifice" and "representation." It's fairly weak, as the principle of Christ being offered "once for all" is still violated. He has already perfected us (Hebrews 10:14). I've given this poorly developed argument further critique here:

      https://rationalchristiandiscernment.blogspot.com/2017/02/the-lords-supper-literal-or-symbolic.html

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  2. One thing you guys can never prove wrong is eucharistic miracles! Those are awesome proof.

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    1. Eucharist miracles huh!
      2Th 2:8  And then shall that Wicked be revealed, whom the Lord shall consume with the spirit of his mouth, and shall destroy with the brightness of his coming: 
      2Th 2:9  Even him, whose coming is after the working of Satan with all power and signs and lying wonders, 

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    2. Claiming a miracle doesn't make it so. And Satan can perform false signs and wonders. If it doesn't match with Scripture -- and the Catholic eucharist doesn't -- then it isn't of God.

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  3. Very well written and presented Justin . I was a Catholic until 5 years ago .

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