In Roman Catholicism we have something called Transubstantiation which is the idea that during Mass, the bread and wine used for Communion become the actual body and blood of Jesus Christ. Orthodox Christianity doesn’t adhere to this doctrine because it’s totally unbiblical.
When Jesus was ordaining Holy communion, it was and is a symbol pointing to the real bread that gives life that is Christ that’s why He says “I am the bread of life.— John 6:48”
John 6:51 “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.”
He is the bread not the one you eat from a bakery because it can’t sustain your life forever “Your fathers ate the manna in the wilderness, and they died.— John 6:49”
Even in Jesus’ time there are those who got it wrongly. John 6:52-53 “Then the Jews began to argue with one another, saying, “How can this man give us His flesh to eat?” 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 yourselves.” To have life in ourselves doesn’t mean He was talking about eating His physical body and drinking His blood.
1 Corinthians 11:24-26 and when He had given thanks, He broke it and said, “This is My body, which is for you; do this in remembrance of Me.” In the same way He took the cup also after supper, saying, “This cup is the new covenant in My blood; do this, as often as you drink it, in remembrance of Me.” For as often as you eat this bread and drink the cup, you proclaim the Lord’s death until He comes.
If we are to take a literal meaning then we will have to conclude that the cup is also a new covenant. If it’s transubstantiation that’s taking place whenever we are having communion then we are literally sacrificing Christ over and over again which means His death wasn’t sufficient, yet the death that He died, He died to sin once for all; but the life that He lives, He lives to God.— Romans 6:10. There’s no need to crucify Him again as the language of Hebrews 6:6 puts it.
If transubstantiation were true then that means that whenever Roman Catholics gather for mass in the different locations they are in, they are sacrificing Christ over and over again. And if we are to follow the same line of logic as Roman Catholics that it is the actual physical body and blood of Christ then every Catholic church at the time of mass is having it’s own actual body of Christ -in otherwords Christ’s physical “bodies”(since it can’t be one body) are present at many churches for mass. But we all know Christ has one physical body like ours as Hebrews 2:14,17 puts it “Therefore, since the children share in flesh and blood, He Himself likewise also partook of the same,… For this reason he had to be made like them, fully human in every way, in order that he might become a merciful and faithful high priest in service to God, and that he might make atonement for the sins of the people.” We all know that our physical body can’t be in more than one place at a time hence Christ’s physical body cannot either.(Though He is truly God, He is also truly human- vera homo vera Deus).This is how transubstantiation is self- refuting and it’s absurd to believe in it.
The breaking of bread and drinking of wine, we are to do in remembrance of what happened on the cross proclaiming Christ’s death till he comes.
Just as the Jews were to observe the passover. There was nothing about the unleavened bread in of itself but it was a symbol reminding them of how their forefathers came out of Egypt in haste— since they were in haste, definitely they didn’t have time to make it leavened(i.e with yeast). Lest they forget how God delivered them with a mighty hand from their strong enemy(Egypt), God ordered them to observe, so that even their children/future generations get to know how great a salvation it was. Deutronomy 16:3 “Do not eat it with bread made with yeast, but for seven days eat unleavened bread, the bread of affliction, because you left Egypt in haste—so that all the days of your life you may remember the time of your departure from Egypt.”
Therefore, we too as Christians, Christ ordered us to observe the Lord’s Supper lest we forget how great a Salvation it was and is to be delivered from our greatest enemies that is sin and death.
That’s why we as Christians get to say – O death, where is your victory? O death, where is your sting?” The sting of death is sin, and the power of sin is the law; but thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.— 1 Corinthians 15:55-57.
NB: We believe also that the Lord’s Supper replaced the Passover.
|Brian Asiimwe||A member of Reconciliation Baptist Christ|