Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Padre Pio - Celebrates the Eucharist



For all you Padre Pio fans. I found a short video of the Padre offering a sacrifice. May God bless St. Pio. Truly a man that loved Jesus with all his heart.

Talk at ya Later

Letters From Teens About Pornography

BY BISHOP PAUL S. LOVERDE
July 8-14, 2007 Issue Posted 7/3/07 at 1:35 PM
Recently I have been hearing a lot about pornography.
The mail I have received on this issue from Catholics and others around the country gives me hope, even as it confirms the gravity of the threat this scourge poses to us all.
Here is what one high school senior wrote in response to my recent pastoral letter, “Bought With a Price: Pornography and the Attack on the Living Temple of God”: “This degradation of society has been so gradual that I had become numb to the immorality that currently surrounds the teenage person. The letter allowed me to realize that I had already grown so accustomed to the material that I no longer viewed it as pornography.”
Dozens of letters like this — responding to the subtle yet aggressive rise in our culture’s permissiveness with regard to pornography — have arrived from around the country since I wrote “Bought With a Price.” Some letters have brought me to tears; others have filled me with anger at the pornography industry and sorrow at our own human condition, so prone to sin, with the result that we unfortunately even tolerate this evil....

Monday, October 29, 2007

What The Church Fathers Say About The Eucharist Part 3



I hope y'all had a good weekend. I had a busy one, but a good one at that. Well... Is there more from the Church fathers? You bet!
Justin Martyr "'And the offering of fine flour, sirs,' I said, 'which was prescribed to be presented on behalf of those purified from leprosy, was a type of the bread of the Eucharist, the celebration of which our Lord Jesus Christ prescribed, in remembrance of the suffering which He endured on behalf of those who are purified in soul from all iniquity... Hence God speaks by the mouth of Malachi, one of the twelve (prophets) as I said before, about the sacrifices at that time presented by you: 'I have no pleasure in you, says the Lord; and I will not accept your sacrifice at your hands; for, from the rising of the sun unto the going down of the same, My name has been glorified among the gentiles, and in every place incense is offered to My name, and a pure offering; for My name is great among the Gentiles, says the Lord; but you profane it'" Dialogue With Trypho, Chap 41

John Chrysostom "'The cup of blessing which we bless, is it not a communion of the Blood of Christ?' (1 Cor 10:16). Very persuasively spoke he, and with awe. For what he says is this: 'This which is in the cup is that which flowed from His side, and of that do we partake.' But he called it a cup of blessing, because holding it in our hands, we so exalt Him in our hymn, wondering, astonished at His unspeakable gift, blessing Him, among other things, for the pouring it out, but also for the imparting thereof to us all. 'Wherefore if you desire blood,' says He, 'redden not the altar of idols with the slaughter of brute beasts, but My altar with My blood.' Tell me, what can be more tremendous than this? What more tenderly kind?" Homilies on First Corinthians, 24:1
"When you see (the Body of Christ) set before you, say to yourself; 'Because of this Body I am no longer earth and ashes, no longer a prisoner, but free; because of this I hope for heaven, and to receive the good things therein, immortal life, the portion of angels, converse with Christ; this Body, nailed and scourged, was more than death could stand against... This is even that Body, the bloodstained, the pierced, and that out of which gushed the saving fountains, the one of blood, the other of water, for all the world'... This Body has He given to us both to hold and to eat; a thing appropriate to intense love." Homilies on First Corinthians, 24:4
Talk at ya Later

Thursday, October 25, 2007

What The Church Fathers Say About The Eucharist Part 2


More of what the Chuch fathers say about the Eucharist.

Cyril of Jerusalem "Having learnt these things, and been fully assured that the seeming bread is not bread, though sensible to taste, but the Body of Christ; and that the seeming wine is not wine, though the tastw will have it so, but the Blood of Christ; and that of this David sung of old, saying, 'And bread strengthens man's heart, to make his face to shine with oil' (ps 103:15), strengthen your heart by partaking thereof as spiritual, and make the face of your soul to shine." Catecheses, 22:9
Ambrose "Perhaps you will say, 'I see something else, how is it that you assert that I receive the Body of Christ?' And this is the point which remains for us to prove. And what evidence shall we make use of? Let us prove that this is not what nature made, but what the blessing consecrated, and the power of blessing is greater than that of nature, because by blessing nature itself is changed" On the Mysteries, 9:50
Talk at ya Later

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Vocation



Pray for our young men. They have so much challenging them today. But we must do more than just pray. We must HELP lead them to God, so that their vocation what ever it may be, Priest, Married or the Single life. Will be a life serving our Lord and our God.

What is it they say? It takes a village to raise a child.... Some thing like that.

Talk at ya Later

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

What The Church Fathers Say About The Eucharist Part 1



What did the early Christin's say about the Eucharist? Did they teach that the consecrated bread and wine truly are the Body, Soul and Divinity of our Lord Jesus Christ?
Did they try to correct a false belief in the Eucharist? Which one did they teach?
Leo the Great "For when the Lord says 'unless you have eaten the flesh of the Son of Man, and drunk His blood, you will not have life in you', you ought so to be partakers at the Holy Table, as to have no doubt whatever concerning the reality of Christ's Body and Blood. For that is taken in the mouth which is believed in Faith, and it is vain for them to respond Amen who dispute that which is taken" Sermons, No. 91:3

Clement of Alexandria "Now, the blood of the Lord is twofold: one is corporeal, redeeming us from corruption; the other is spiritual, and it is with that we are anointed. To drink the blood of Jesus is to participate in His incorruption. Yet, the Spirit is the strength of the World in the same way that the blood is of the body. Similarly, wine is mixed with water and the Spirit is joined to man; the first, the mixture, provides feasting that faith may be increased; the other, the Spirit, leads us to incorruption. The union of both, that is, of the potion and the Word, is called the Eucharist, a gift worthy of praise and surpassingly fair; those who partake of it are sanctified in body and soal, for it is the will of the Father that man, a composite made by God, be united to the Spirit and to the Word mystically." Christ The Educator Bk. 2 Chap. 2

Talk at ya Later

Monday, October 22, 2007

Sunday, October 21, 2007

The Eucharist. The Real Deal. Part 12

What about the prophecy of Jesus the Christ? How is Jesus connected to this sacrificial offering of bread and wine? In Genesis 14:18 "And Melchizedek king of Salem brought out bread and wine; he was a priest of God Most High." Melchizedek was a priestly king , just as Jesus is. Psalms 110:3-4 "Your people will offer themselves freely on the day you lead your host upon the holy mountains. From the womb of the morning like dew your youth will come to you. The Lord has sworn and will never change his mind, 'You are a priest for ever after the order of Melchizedek.'" This is reiterated in Hebrews 7:15-17 "This becomes even more evident when another priest arises in the likeness of Melchizedek, who has become a priest, not according to a legal requirement concerning bodily descent but by the power of an indestructible life. For it is witnessed of him, 'Thou art a priest for ever, after the order of Melchizedek.'"
Christ made perfect the Sacrifice the Jews offered on Passover. How? By becoming the sacrifice offered up. Jesus is the Lamb of God!! Also, Jesus Christ, the Priestly King, of the order of Melchizedek. Jesus made perfect the offering of bread and wine. How? By becoming the bread and wine offered up. Jesus Christ is the bread of Life.
The Eucharist offered at Mass is the only explanation for the prophesy in Malachi. "For from the rising of the sun to it's setting my name is great among the nations, and in every place incense is offered to my name, and a pure offering; for my name is great among the nations, says the Lord of hosts" (Malachi 1:11)

This is the end of My apology of the Eucharist. But If this notion of the Eucharist is real, there would be mention of it in the early church. Refuting and condemning the belief of the Real Presence, or confirming and encouraging the belief in the Real Presence. Next we will see what the Church Fathers said on the issue of the Real Presence.
Talk at ya Later

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

The Eucharist. The Real Deal. Part 11


The claims some people make saying the Eucharist is nothing more than a "cracker". Is not consistent with scripture.
St. Paul says "For as often as you eat this bread and drink the cup, you proclaim the Lord's death until he comes. Whoever, therefore, eats the bread or drinks the cup of the Lord in an unworthy manner will be guilty of profaning the body and blood of the Lord. Let a man examine himself, and so eat of the bread and drink of the cup. For any one who eats and drinks without discerning the body eats and drinks judgment upon himself." (1Cor 11:26-29)

I could put my two cents in here, but Karl Keating does a superb job in his book Catholicism and Fundamentalism " 'Plain and simple reason', observed Nicholas Cardinal Wiseman more than a century ago in his lectures on the Real Presence, 'Seems to tell us that the presence of Christ's body is necessary for an offense committed against it. A man cannot be 'guilty of majesty' unless the majesty exists in the object against which his crime is committed. In like manner, an offender against the Blessed Eucharist cannot be described as guilty of Christ's Body and Blood, if these be not present in the Sacrament'.
God spoke and the world was created. Jesus spoke "This is my body" and the Eucharist was created.
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The Eucharist. The Real Deal. Part 10

It has been said to me that we do not participate in Christ sacrifice by eating his body under the appearance of bread. That it is symbolic. We do it to remember him, nothing more than remembering him. Just like Jesus said "Do this in remembrance of me". It is just bread. That I am looking too deeply into scripture to say we relive Christ's sacrifice by participating in the Eucharist. That if the Real Presence isn't real, Catholics are idol worshipers.
OK. I can see how someone can come to that conclusion. But the real question is what does St. Paul say. "Therefore, my beloved, shun the worship of idols. I speak as to sensible men; judge for yourselves what I say. The cup of blessing which we bless, is it not a participation in the blood of Christ? The bread which we break, is it not a participation in the body of Christ? Because there is one bread, we who are many are one body for we all partake of the one bread." (1Cor 10:14-17) Looks Plain and clear to me. "is it not a participation in the body of Christ?". To participate is more than JUST to remember. By participating in the Eucharist we do more than remember, we take part in the sacrifice.
St. Paul talks about the worship of idols. Why does he not address these worshipers of bread as idol worshipers? It' not as tho the theology of the Real Presence suddenly appeared around the reformation. In fact, if Catholics are wrong, where are the early writings by the Church Fathers condemning this practice? The fact of the matter is, they don't exist. The only writings by the early Church Fathers, on the topic of the Real Presence, backup and promote the Catholic Church's claim that Jesus Christ is really present body, soul and divinity in the Eucharist.
Talk at ya Later







Monday, October 15, 2007

The Eucharist. The Real Deal. Part 9

In the Gospel's of Matthew, Mark and Luke depicts Christ instituting the Eucharist. "Now as they were eating, Jesus took bread, and blessed, and broke it, and gave it to the disciples and said, 'Take, eat; this is my body.' And he took a cup, and when he had given thanks he gave it to them, saying 'Drink of it, all of you; for this is my blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many for the forgiveness of sins'". (Mt 26:26-28) It is also in Mk 14:22 and Lk 22:17. . There are some who say that Jesus is speaking in a metaphor. The bread represents him, and eating the bread is symbolic of believing in him.
Well... That's nice.... But wrong!! Look at the language that Jesus uses. "This is my body" This is not the language of symbolism. If Jesus were being symbolic he would have said something like "I am this bread". This language here is like when Jesus talked about being a door, and a vine.
Now lets just pretend Jesus was understood by the disciples as being symbolic at the Last Supper. How would Jesus of spoke so that others would understand he was not being symbolic? "And Jesus said, 'This is my body' One of the disciples said, 'No that's bread.' Jesus took the bread and said, 'This really really really is my body. This is not a joke. I'm going to die soon. So get it through those thick skulls, This really really really really really really really really really really really is my body'". The disciples didn't understand how the bread was his body. But that does not mean they didn't accept and believe it was his body. Literally.
Look at the Holy Trinity. We believe in the Holy Trinity. Three Persons in one Nature. As Christians we don't fully understand the Holy Trinity, but our lack of understanding doesn't cause it not to be true. Our lack of understanding shows us that we have to have faith. Faith that God can do things that we find hard to understand. We need faith because some of Gods teachings are hard and we don't want to listen to them. "Many of his disciples, when they heard it, said 'This is a hard saying; who can listen to it?'" (Jn 6:60)
Talk at ya Later

Sunday, October 14, 2007

The Eucharist. The Real Deal. Part 8

We continue in John Chapter six. "After this many of his disciples drew back and no longer went about with him. Jesus said to the twelve, 'Will you also go away?' Simon Peter answered him, 'Lord, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life; and we have believed, and have come to know, that you are the Holy One of God.'" (Jn 6:66-69) Why are some of his disciples leaving him? They have seen him do many miracles. One just the day before. They are leaving because of this crazy talk of eating his flesh and drinking his blood. These are his disciples! Followers of Jesus the Christ!
Take note that the disciples are leaving because they know Jesus is talking about literally eating his flesh. Jesus does not correct their error in understanding. Jesus does not say "hay comeback! You misunderstand me!" They understood correctly, so Christ let them leave.
When Jesus asked "the twelve" how did Peter respond? It was not with a confident "We got it Jesus! We understand it." No!!!! Not at all!! Peter and the others did not understand! "Where else do we have to go...?" Was pretty much his answer. That is not an answer of understanding. That's an answer saying "I have no clue how we're going to eat you're flesh. But because I believe you are God, I have no where else to go!"
Have you ever prayed like that? "God. I don't know how you're going to fix my marriage (or what ever) but I believe some how you will."
When Peter is talking and says "words of eternal life" the term "word" is not logos. It is another Greek words that means "the message" or "words of instruction"
Talk at ya Later

Friday, October 12, 2007

ZZZZZZ "T" ZZZZZ "A" ZZZ "T" ZZZZ "T" ZZZ "O" ZZ"O" ZZZZ "S"

Ok. It's been a long week, it's Friday so I'm going off topic from the Eucharist. Tattoos! Many people got em. Some people hate them. What about religious tattoos? How do ya feel about people marking up their bodies with religious images?
As for me, how do I feel about them? well.... The Vatican Seal is on my right shoulder! Enjoy the weekend!
Talk at ya Later

Thursday, October 11, 2007

The Eucharist. The Real Deal. Part 7

We continue in John chapter six. "'It is the spirit that gives life, the flesh is of no avail; the words that I have spoken to you are spirit and life. But there are some of you that do not believe.' For Jesus knew from the first who those were that did not believe, and who it was that should betray him. And he said 'This is why I told you that no one can come to me unless it is granted him by the Father'" (Jn 6:63-65) Here in verse 63 Christ is saying man's flesh is of no avail. He is NOT saying his flesh is of no avail. To interpret that Jesus is meaning his flesh is of no avail would contradict everything he just said a few verses back. Jesus is saying that man is not going to understand this, thinking in a carnal sense. You need to understand this in a spiritual sense.

Stephen K. Ray in his book St. John's Gospel "Jesus is simply saying that the 'fleshly' mind cannot understand the deep things of God. He is not saying that 'his flesh' profits nothing; rather, it is natural understanding, 'the flesh' devoid of God's Spirit, that profits and understands nothing. The Father must draw each person into belief. Without the assistance of the Spirit, Jesus' words are not believed (Jn 6:64-65). If these words of Jesus are not believed, the divine life is not participated in, the body and blood of the Lord in the Eucharist are partaken of unworthily, and the person chances the forfeiture of the resurrection of eternal life. Jesus makes this clear."

I'm not trying to be smug in using definitions. The reason for these definitions is because some protestants when they read John 6:63 interpret "spirit" to mean something along the lines of "symbolic". Jesus does not say "the words that I have spoken to you are symbolic and life"

Wiktionary defines:
Spiritual (comparative more spiritual, superlative most spiritual)
Positivespiritual
Comparativemore spiritual
Superlativemost spiritual
Of or pertaining to the spirit or the soul
Of or pertaining to the God or a Church; sacred
Of or pertaining to spirits; supernatural
Notice that none of the definitions of Spiritual resemble any thing relating to mean symbolic, or figurative.

Metaphor (countable and uncountable; plural metaphors)
(uncountable) The use of a word or phrase to refer to something that it isn't, implying a similarity between the word or phrase used and the thing described, and without the words "like" or "as".
(countable) The word or phrase used in this way. An implied comparison.

Symbolic
Pertaining to a symbol.
Referring to something with an implicit meaning.
Talk at ya Later

Tuesday, October 9, 2007

The Eucharist. The Real Deal. Part 6

We continue in John chapter six. "Many of his disciples, when they heard it said 'This is a hard saying; who can listen to it?' But Jesus knowing in himself that his disciples murmured at it said to them, 'Do you take offense at this? Then what if you were to see the Son of man ascending where he was before?'" (Jn 6:60-62) Remember murmuring is an example of unbelief. Jesus's disciples were murmuring. His disciples were the ones that believed in him. These were not just passers by listening in on what he was saying. They said this saying is hard. If the bread of life discourse is all a metaphor, which is what the disciples thought earlier. What is hard about that. Nothing! Thinking Jesus is speaking metaphoric would make more sense than taking Jesus literally. What is hard to understand is how they were to truly eat his flesh and drink his blood.

What is the point of Jesus asking if they took offense to this? Because Christ knew the Mosaic law prohibiting the drinking of blood and eating of human flesh. Along with the disciples having trouble understanding how they were to eat his flesh. Christ asks what if they saw him rise up to heaven. G.H. Trench in A Study of St. John's Gospel says "Let them not think of his Flesh as they see it now... Suppose they were to see this very flesh of his not merely risen from the dead but ascending to Heaven, they would find it easier to understand, for they would then realize that this Flesh of His exists not only as they see it now, in it's phenomenal or physical mode, but that it exists also in a spiritual mode. And it is in it's spiritual mode that he gives it as food: but under either mode it is one and the same flesh'"
Talk at ya Later

Monday, October 8, 2007

The Eucharist. The Real Deal. Part 5

We continue in John Chapter six. "I am the bread of life. Your fathers ate the manna in the wilderness, and they died. This is the bread which comes down from heaven, that a man may eat of it and not die. I am the living bread which came down from heaven; if any one eats of this bread, he will live for ever; and the bread which I shall give for the life of the world is my flesh." (Jn 6:48-51) Now remember in Jn 6:34-35 The Jews asked Jesus for this bread he had to offer and Jesus told them he was the bread of life. Pay close attention, Jesus defines what the "bread" is in V51 "IS MY FLESH" . Jesus is getting more explicit. Also remember up to this point the Jews understand Jesus metaphorically.
The very next verse "The Jews then disputed among themselves, saying, 'How can this man give us his flesh to eat?'" (Jn 6:52) Karl Keating in his book Catholicism and Fundamentalism says "Hugh Pope, in commenting on this chapter, remarked that at last 'they had understood him literally and were stupefied; but because they had understood him correctly, he repeats his words with extraordinary emphasis, so much so that only now does he introduce the statement about drinking his blood'". In the verses following does Jesus correct the Jews for thinking he is talking literally? No!! Did Jesus say any thing like "No stupid you don't get it. I don't mean my flesh, or my body literally. I am saying this bread is like my flesh." No!! Jesus repeats what he said before, and gets more intense so that the Jews know he is not speaking metaphorically.
"So 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 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" (Jn 6:53-55) Indeed it is. Notice the double amen also translated depending on which version as truly. This is in no way the language used to be symbolic.
Talk at ya Later

Sunday, October 7, 2007

The Eucharist. The Real Deal. Part 4

Continuing in John chapter six, vs 35-40 Jesus is explaining that he is from heaven to do the will of God the Father. That some will believe in him and some will not. "The Jews then murmured at him, because he said 'I am the bread which came down from heaven.' They said 'Is not this Jesus, the son of Joseph, whose father and mother we know? How does he say, 'I have come down from heaven'?" (Jn 6:41-42) The Jews then murmured at him. Murmuring is an example of unbelief. Murmuring provoked the Mosaic gift of water (Ex 15:24) The Jews didn't understand Jesus's divinity. They only understood his humanity.
Too many people take for granted living two thousand years after the death and resurrection of Christ. What if you had heard his words back then? Seen him him around town knowing he was the carpenter's son. Would you of seen him for who he really was? The Word made flesh?
Some people say all of John six is about faith, and faith only. That is only half true, the first part of John six is about faith, the later half is about the Eucharist.
In Jn 43-48 Jesus is telling the group of Jews again that he has come down from heaven. Jesus says "I am the bread of life" (Jn 6:48) This is where the transition is of faith and the Eucharist. John is known for having double meaning in his writing. Jn 6:48 is a perfect example of it. Here, John is writing that Jesus is the bread of life in both a metaphoric and a literal way.
Talk at ya Later

Saturday, October 6, 2007

Marriage, family life are under attack, says Vatican official

Marriage, family life are under attack, says Vatican official
By Jim Myers10/4/2007
Catholic News Service (www.catholicnews.com)
COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (CNS) – A Vatican official urged a group of Catholic business leaders meeting in Colorado Springs to vigorously defend marriage and family life which he said are under attack by modern society.


"The dissolution of marriage and family is like the introduction of a cancerous virus," said Nigerian Cardinal Francis Arinze, head of the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Sacraments.
"Collapse will only be a matter of time. Can we afford to stand by and look in helpless silence?" he asked participants during the Legatus international fall summit Sept. 21.
The cardinal named several forces that debase marriage and family, including sexual relations between unmarried people, pornography and prostitution. He also pointed out that scripture condemns homosexual acts and said divorce ruins children.
Additionally, Cardinal Arinze denounced sterilization and contraception as attacks on the origin of human life and called abortion and infanticide "unspeakable crimes."
"It's tragic that some people see babies as a problem rather than a blessing," he said. "When a culture views dogs and cats as nice but children as troublesome, we are in trouble."
The cardinal deconstructed moral relativism and the argument that what is right for one person doesn't apply to someone else. He especially took to task those who use the phrase "I'm personally not in favor of it" to justify allowing others to partake in evils such as abortion.
"I'm personally not in favor in killing the whole lot of you in Congress, but since there are some who, according to free choice, want to shoot all of you, I let them free," said Cardinal Arinze, providing an illustration of what he deemed a useless choice of words. "It's not a good argument."
He said God's role in the world has to be taken into account when deciding on morals and laws and pointed to the Ten Commandments as being universally accepted as moral truths.
"When objective moral truth is denied, we are on a slippery slope," he told the group of Catholic business executives.
The cardinal also attacked the mass media for what he described as an irresponsible use of influential tools. Instead of being used as a force for good, Cardinal Arinze said mass media outlets are often used to promulgate evil, whether wittingly or unwittingly.
"The people who control the means of social communication -- radio, television, press, the computer -- they have also to ask themselves whether their productions promote the good of marriage and family or whether they profane and banalize these sacred institutions."
Respect for marriage and family stems from a respect for life, the cardinal added.
He said Christians have to "be ready to stand against the tide in cultures that regard the elderly as an encumbrance. There is room for all in families: children, parents, grandparents; young, old, all."
"Everyone in the church ... has a role toward sustaining the divine gifts of marriage and family," he told the assembly.
He said the main contribution laypeople can make toward strengthening marriage and family life is through their personal example as children, spouses and parents.
"They are to give good witness to Christ by model lives," he said. - - -Copyright (c) 2007 Catholic News Service/U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops

Thursday, October 4, 2007

The Eucharist. The Real Deal. Part 3

We continue in John chapter six "So they said to him 'Then what sign do you do, that we may see, and believe you? What work do you preform? Our fathers ate manna in the wilderness; as it is written, 'He gave them bread from heaven to eat''" (Jn 6:30-31) The Jews want Jesus to preform a sign. Even tho Christ, the day before multiplied loaves of bread, they want a sign. This has to do with the manna in Exodus 16:4-5

Stephen K. Ray wrights in his book St. John's Gospel "The Bible sees the manna not as a natural phenomenon; rather, it transforms natural occurrences into acts of God, willed by him in support of Israel. Manna is thus, in the biblical view, literally lechem shamayim, the bread of heaven, a gift of God..." Stephen K. Ray also quotes F.F. Bruce in his book The Gospel of John "Let him give further evidence of being the second Moses (v. 14). If Moses had given their forefathers manna in the wilderness, let the second Moses vindicate his authority in a similar way- not by a once-for-all feeding but on a more lasting basis.... In later times the Rabbis taught that the new age would be marked by the restoration of the gift of manna...The loaves and fishes were a timely provision indeed, but they were earthly food, not bread from heaven. One who could give them bread from heaven would beyond all doubt be the prophet like Moses"

The Bible continues " Jesus then said to them 'Truly Truly, I say to you, it was not Moses who gave you the bread from heaven; my father gives you the true bread from heaven. For the bread of God is that which comes down from heaven, and gives life to the world.' They said to him 'Lord give us this bread always.' Jesus said to them, 'I am the bread of life; he who comes to me shall not hunger, and he who believes in me shall never thirst'" (Jn 6:32-35) Take note Jesus was getting more explicit, And the Jews begin to wine. The Jews understand Jesus to be talking metaphorically at this point.
The Jews were comparing Jesus to Moses. St. Augustine wrote in his Tractates on the Gospel according to St. John "But the Lord Jesus declared to be such an one, that He was superior to Moses. For Moses dared not say of Himself that He gave, 'not the meat which perisheth, but that which endureth to eternal life' Jesus promised something greater than Moses gave. By Moses indeed was promised a kingdom, and a land flowing with milk and honey, temporal peace, abundance of children... and all other things, temporal goods indeed, yet in figure spiritual; because in the Old Testament they were promised to the old man. They considered therefore the things promised by Moses, and they considered the things promised by Christ. The former promised a full belly on the earth, but of the meat which perisheth; the latter promised, 'not the meat which perisheth, but that which endureth unto eternal life.'" So asking Jesus for a sign wasn't exactly a lack of faith. Moses was the greatest prophet to date. When they point out Moses to Jesus, he let them know Moses didn't do anything. It was God that gave them the bread not Moses. Jesus is almost saying "You knuckleheads, you want bread from heaven! I came from heaven! I am this bread you want!
Talk at ya Later

Tuesday, October 2, 2007

The Eucharist. The Real Deal. Part 2

The Gospel's of Matthew, Mark and Luke give testimony of Jesus instituting the Eucharist. But the Gospel of John does not. In chapter six of John's Gospel, John does give the theology behind the Eucharist.

In John chapter six there was "a multitude following him" (Jn 6:2) him being Jesus. Jesus feeds five thousand men with five barley loaves and two fish. Note that the five thousand is not counting women or children. What was leftover filled twelve baskets. Does it strike you that five loaves of bread and two fish can't fill even twelve baskets? It's as if there was an endless supply of food their on the hill. This miracle prefigures the gift of Christ's own flesh. It is capable of being received by millions without being divided or diminished. "When the people saw the sign which he had done, they said 'this is indeed the prophet who is to come into the world.' " (Jn 6:14) Next the Jews were about to try and take Jesus and make him there king. Jesus withdrew from the crowd since he knew what they wanted to do. Following this is Jesus walking on the water. The next day the multitude of people cross the sea to be with Jesus.

The Jews ask Jesus "When did you come here"(Jn 6:25) Notice that they did not ask how. I wonder if more of his disciples would have stayed with him if they saw him walking on water. "Jesus answered them 'Truly, truly, I say to you, you seek me, not because you saw signs, but because you ate your fill of the loaves. Do not labor for the food which perishes, but for the food which endures to eternal life; which the Son of man will give to you; for on him has God the Father set his seal. Then they said to him 'What must we do, to be doing the work of God?' Jesus answered them, 'This is the work of God, that you believe in him whom he sent." (Jn 6:26-29) They didn't follow Jesus because they did believe he was a prophet. He filled their bellies. Just a few verses before they wanted to make Jesus their king. Many of the Jews had selfish, worldly motivations for following Jesus. Christ doesn't want them following him for those reasons. Jesus wants them to believe in him. Jesus wanted the people to follow him not follow after him. So the Jews ask, What they have to do. Christ answerer's them "believe in him whom he has sent." (Jn 6:29) Believe in Jesus, is what they have to do.
Faith is needed to understand the Eucharist, just as faith is needed to believe in God.
Talk at ya later