Defense of the mass/Liturgy and the Eucharist


#1

I want this thread to be for the defense of the Eucharist and the mass/Liturgy since they are both intertwined. We are constantly attacked about the mass and the Eucharist so I feel that it would be good to defend them together. I will give my defense and I would like to see other people give there defense or modify what I say so that we can improve our defense. Here goes.

The Catholic mass is a continuation of the passover which Christ participated in at the last supper. On the passover the Jews would sacrifice the lamb in order to attone for there sins. When they had this sacrifice they would first sacrifice the lamb and then they would eat it. It was required that they eat it in order to complete the covenant with God.

The last supper was held on the passover. This is when Jesus said, “This is my body…This is my blood…” This connects Christ to the passover and the lamb.

In revelation it refers to “the lamb of God” 28 times. There is no more common term for Christ in the scriptures. When we participate in the Eucharist we are sealing the covenant with God.

Every time we say the Agnus Dei, shown below, we proclaim this.

“Lamb of God, who takes away the sins of the world, have mercy on us” “Lamb of God, who takes away the sins of the world, have mercy on us.” “Lamb of God, who takes away the sins of the world, grant us peace.”

Revelation is understood to be a liturgical book by the Church. In Revelation 1;10 it mentions that it is the Lords day that he is seeing this vision. This connects it to sunday, the day Christ rose from the dead. There are also seven candles which relate Christ to the Jewish tradition with the menora. If you go to any Byzantine Catholic Church you will see these seven candles.
In chapter 22 of Revelation it shows a view of the throne of God and of the Lamb. From the side of this throne there is a river flowing and on either side of this river there is the tree of life which shall nourish the people. There are only two other places in scripture where it has a tree and water. The first is in Genesis in the Garden of Eden. The second is the crucifixion of Christ. Christ was hung on a tree and the water flowed from his side. There is an obvious connection here between the throne of God and the crucifixion. This river nourishes the tree of life and it the tree of life nourishes the people.

In Isaiah 6, Isaiah is shown a view of Heaven. In this vision, all the angels are singing a hymm to God “Holy, Holy, Holy is the lord of hosts, the whole earth is full of his glory”. This is where the easter Catholic Churches get what the call the thrice holy hymn and where the western Catholics get the “Holy, Holy, Holy”. This connects the Church with what is being done in Heaven by the angels.(I also think verse 7 is a reference to the Eucharist but am not sure.)

When we participate in the Eucharist we are participating in the sacrifice which Christ made on the cross on Calvary Hill. We do this by sealing the covenant with God.

In John 6 Christ says that if you do not eat his flesh and blood you shall not have life in you this was shown in Revelation 22 when it says that the tree of life shall nourish the people. Because we have to eat the Eucharist in order to complete the covenant with God, the Eucharist must be the literal body and blood of Christ. Christ is the pascal supper which we participate in for the forgiveness of sins.

Yes, it is one sacrifice that Christ made, but it is a perpetual sacrifice that goes on for all time and is made available to all throughout time. It is also a rememerance of Christ, but that does not mean there is not a deeper reason for the Eucharist.

For more detail I reference John6 and 1Cor11.


#2

Mal 1:10-11

10 Oh, that there were one among you who would shut the doors, that you might not kindle fire upon my altar in vain!** I have no pleasure in you, says the LORD of hosts, and I will not accept an offering from your hand**. 11 For from the rising of the sun to its 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.


#3

part 1 of 2.

Early Christian baptism and the Mass are described in Chapters 61, 65-67 of Justin Martyr’s First Apology written about A.D. 155:

CHAP. 61.
I will also relate the manner in which we dedicated ourselves to God when we had been made new through Christ… As many as are persuaded and believe that what we teach and say is true, and undertake to be able to live accordingly, are instructed to pray and to entreat God with fasting, for the remission of their sins that are past, we praying and fasting with them. Then they are brought by us where there is water, and are regenerated in the same manner in which we were ourselves regenerated. For, in the name of God, the Father and Lord of the universe, and of our Saviour Jesus Christ, and of the Holy Spirit, they then receive the washing with water. For Christ also said, "Except ye be born again, ye shall not enter into the kingdom of heaven. …
And for this [rite] we have learned from the apostles this reason. Since at our birth we were born without our own knowledge or choice, by our parents coming together, and were brought up in bad habits and wicked training; in order that we may not remain the children of necessity and of ignorance, but may become the children of choice and knowledge, and may obtain in the water the remission of sins formerly committed, there is pronounced over him who chooses to be born again, and has repented of his sins, the name of God the Father and Lord of the universe; he who leads to the layer the person that is to be washed calling him by this name alone. For no one can utter the name of the ineffable God; and if any one dare to say that there is a name, he raves with a hopeless madness. And this washing is called illumination, because they who learn these things are illuminated in their understandings. And in the name of Jesus Christ, who was crucified under Pontius Pilate, and in the name of the Holy Spirit, who through the prophets foretold all things about Jesus, he who is illuminated is washed.
. . .
CHAP. 65
But we, after we have thus washed him who has been convinced and has assented to our teaching, bring him to the place where those who are called brethren are assembled, in order that we may offer hearty prayers in common for ourselves and for the baptized [illuminated] person, and for all others in every place, that we may be counted worthy, now that we have learned the truth, by our works also to be found good citizens and keepers of the commandments, so that we may be saved with an everlasting salvation. Having ended the prayers, we salute one another with a kiss. There is then brought to the president of the brethren bread and a cup of wine mixed with water; and he taking them, gives praise and glory to the Father of the universe, through the name of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and offers thanks at considerable length for our being counted worthy to receive these things at His hands. And when he has concluded the prayers and thanksgivings, all the people present express their assent by saying Amen. This word Amen answers in the Hebrew language to genoito [so be it]. And when the president has given thanks, and all the people have expressed their assent, those who are called by us deacons give to each of those present to partake of the bread and wine mixed with water over which the thanksgiving was pronounced, and to those who are absent they carry away a portion.


#4

part 2 of 2.

Early Christian baptism and the Mass are described in Chapters 61, 65-67 of Justin Martyr’s First Apology written about A.D. 155:

CHAP. 66.
And this food is called among us Eukaristia [the Eucharist], of which no one is allowed to partake but the man who believes that the things which we teach are true, and who has been washed with the washing that is for the remission of sins, and unto regeneration, and who is so living as Christ has enjoined. For not as common bread and common drink do we receive these; but in like manner as Jesus Christ our Saviour, having been made flesh by the Word of God, had both flesh and blood for our salvation, so likewise have we been taught that the food which is blessed by the prayer of His word, and from which our blood and flesh by transmutation are nourished, is the flesh and blood of that Jesus who was made flesh. For the apostles, in the memoirs composed by them, which are called Gospels, have thus delivered unto us what was enjoined upon them; that Jesus took bread, and when He had given thanks, said, “This do ye in remembrance of Me, this is My body;” and that, after the same manner, having taken the cup and given thanks, He said, “This is My blood;” and gave it to them alone. …
CHAP. 67.
And we afterwards continually remind each other of these things. And the wealthy among us help the needy; and we always keep together; and for all things wherewith we are supplied, we bless the Maker of all through His Son Jesus Christ, and through the Holy Spirit.

And on the day called Sunday, all who live in cities or in the country gather together to one place, and the memoirs of the apostles or the writings of the prophets are read, as long as time permits; then, when the reader has ceased, the president verbally instructs, and exhorts to the imitation of these good things. Then we all rise together and pray, and, as we before said, when our prayer is ended, bread and wine and water are brought, and the president in like manner offers prayers and thanksgivings, according to his ability, and the people assent, saying Amen; and there is a distribution to each, and a participation of that over which thanks have been given, and to those who are absent a portion is sent by the deacons. And they who are well to do, and willing, give what each thinks fit; and what is collected is deposited with the president, who succours the orphans and widows and those who, through sickness or any other cause, are in want, and those who are in bonds and the strangers sojourning among us, and in a word takes care of all who are in need. But Sunday is the day on which we all hold our common assembly, because it is the first day on which God, having wrought a change in the darkness and matter, made the world; and Jesus Christ our Saviour on the same day rose from the dead. For He was crucified on the day before that of Saturn (Saturday); and on the day after that of Saturn, which is the day of the Sun, having appeared to His apostles and disciples, He taught them these things, which we have submitted to you also for your consideration.


#5

I thought I would get a decent amount of posts on this thread.


#6

[quote=jimmy]I want this thread to be for the defense of the Eucharist and the mass/Liturgy since they are both intertwined. We are constantly attacked about the mass and the Eucharist so I feel that it would be good to defend them together.
[/quote]

I’m not sure who is attacking, other than some odd-balls that are best left alone rather than a vain attempt at dialogue.

The truth is that the Catholic Church has been able to have a very fruitful and temperate and rewarding dialogue with most major Protestant and Orthodox communions regarding the Eucharist and Christian worship. Not that we are in agreement, but we seem far from constant attacks.

God bless our Holy Father for his ecumencial leadership.


#7

I was not speaking of the Orthodox in this. I was thinking maybe a few Orthodox could respond since there theology is so similar. I wasn’t speaking of the Anglicans or Lutherans either.

Have you ever been told you worship the sun because the shape of the Eucharist? I have. They call us pagans.


#8

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