I’m a Protestant investigating the claims of the Catholic church (honestly looking for the truth, not a fight), and I’ve run across some Protestant objections (from www.carm.org/catholic) to the doctrine of transsubstantiation that I’ve not seen addressed elsewhere. They are these:
- There is no indication that the disciples worshipped the elements.
Now, I know that the Church can claim that the early church fathers believed in transsubstantiation, but why no New Testament mention of worshiping the elements?
- The supper was instituted before Jesus’ crucifixion.
How can Christ give his disciples his real body and blood before he has actually sacrificed himself?
- The Roman Catholic view is a violation of Levitical law.
Yes, it seems a little picky, but isn’t cannibalism and the drinking of blood still a violation of the law, especially considering that the particular dietary stipulation about blood was carried even into the new covenant?
- It is a violation of the Incarnation.
Apparently, by nature man cannot be omnipresent, and so Christ’s body cannot be omnipresent. This seems to be the crux of the argument.
- The Lord’s Supper is not a sacrifice of Christ.
I’ll just quote the guy here: "In the Roman Catholic Mass, there is a sacrifice of Christ. In other words, in the ceremonies, is a reenactment and an actual sacrifice of Christ per the Mass. This is an obvious contradiction to the Scriptures which teach us that Christ died once for all and that by the one offering He has perfected for all time those who are sanctified. It does not state in the Word of God that the sacrifice of Christ must be repeated in order to forgive us of our sins or somehow help us to maintain our salvation by the infusion of grace. The fact that Christ died once and the sacrifice occurred once, is proof that it is sufficient to cleanse us of our sins."
How does the Catholic Church counter these arguments? The author of the website writes as though there are no counters, but I just can’t imagine that with a 2,000 year history, the Church has never dealt with this.