When Jesus says “whoever eats My flesh and drinks My blood has eternal life”, does the Church view this as something that by doing this one has eternal life, or is doing this because they already have eternal life, as they have trusted Jesus enough to believe in this hard teaching?
OK - and who’s the first one that’s going to say both??? I know you guys!
Also seems to be another statement that one “has” eternal life, similar to John 5:24. Not to say that once saved always saved, but a good indication that salvation starts now, and continues on as long as we walk with Him - and as long as we do so we can be confident of our salvation.
Jesus is talking about the continuous necessity of the Eucharist.
Heb 10: (all emphasis mine)
23 Let us hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering, for he who promised is faithful; 24 and let us consider how to stir up one another to love and good works, 25 not neglecting to meet together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another, and all the more as you see the Day drawing near. 26 For if we sin deliberatelyafter receiving the knowledge of the truth, there no longer remains a sacrifice for sins, 27* but a fearful prospect of judgment, and a fury of fire which will consume the adversaries. 28* A man who has violated the law of Moses dies without mercy at the testimony of two or three witnesses. 29* How much worse punishment do you think will be deserved by the man who has spurned the Son of God, and profaned the blood of the covenant by which he was sanctified, and outraged the Spirit of grace?
one has to ask
*] it’s already in place that deliberately not meeting together on the Day (Sunday) is considered a grave sin that brings huge judgement and consequences for those who do it. Why?
*]Why for THEM is there no sacrifice for sins who deliberately don’t meet on Sunday?
*]Why do THEY spurn the Son of God by deliberately not meeting?
*]Why do THEY profane the blood of the covenant by deliberately not meeting?
*]Why do THEY outrage the spirit of grace by deliberately not meeting?
The reason is, **after receiving the **knowledge of the truth, ( they then can’t claim ignorance, ) and who deliberately blow off mass (the celebration of the Eucharist on Sunday) , It’s already a huge sin, and they are being warned of it in the most graphic terms.
*]The words in Hebrews refer to the Eucharist [/FONT] instituted by the Son of God
*][/FONT] For this is my blood of the new testament, which shall be shed for many unto remission of sins.(i.e. sacrifice for sin)
*]Mark 14:24 And he said to them: This is my blood of the new testament, which shall be shed for many.
*][/FONT] In like manner the chalice also, after he had supped, saying: This is the chalice, the new testament in my blood, which shall be shed for you.
*][/FONT] In like manner also the chalice, after he had supped, saying: This chalice is the new testament in my blood: this do ye, as often as you shall drink, for the commemoration of me.
When one deliberately doesn’t celebrate the Eucharist on Sunday then, those consequences mentioned are the realities and results for that person’s soul. This is also why Sunday mass is a holy day of obligation.
The original language is helpful. The verb used to “eat” is “trogo” in the Greek. That word is used ONLY in the physical sense in the NT. Now picture a guy who hasn’t eaten for 3 days being handed a steak and then subsequently tearing it apart…that is a good description of the term used.
And it’s continuous:
In fact, all the uses of “trogo” in John 6 are present participles, which means that the eating of Jesus must be continual.
…consider this through St. John’s 15:1-10 and then take it to St. John’s 1:12-13 and St. John’s 3:16-21… it is both the Person of Christ and Obedience to Christ that leads to Salvation.
St. John’s 15 is the best example against osas since the Disciples are clearly enjoying Sanctifying Grace, yet, Jesus warns them that they must remain adhered to Him or they will be cutoff, thrown into the fire, and burnt.
So we receive Salvation through the species but we cannot deceive Christ by thinking that we can jack-Him up (receive unworthily) and still reap Everlasting Life.
Think about Jesus sacrifice on the cross. It wasn’t propitiatory merely because that is where he took his last breath…it was propitiatory because of each one of those lashes he took…and because of each one of those nails that pierced his body…and because he carried that cross, etc, etc… Hence, it was the overall process involved that appeased God. It was ALL necessary…
Likewise, it’s the process that saves us. I think that’s why the Church sort of bundles the three “initiation sacraments” together ( see CCC 1212) So from a Catholic perspective the Eucharist absolutely conveys life. And I think reading into the text in John 6 you see how it is present tense which coincides with the Churchs’ teaching, that salvation is indeed a process.
Of course the protestant rebuttal will be that if you have true faith you will get baptized and forgive your debtors and any other qualifiers. And that is correct, but it still doesn’t negate the necessity for those under ordinary circumstances.
Jn 6: (all emphasis mine)
53 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; 54***he who*** eats my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life, and I will raise him up at the last day. 55 For my flesh is food indeed, and my blood is drink indeed. 56 ***He who ***eats my flesh and drinks my blood abides in me, and I in him. …
Those are conditional statements. One must do what Jesus says or they don’t have life in the way Jesus is identifying life.
That’s what I was leaning to - and one of the few things I don’t agree with my last Baptist pastor, a man I truly love and respect, and is more passionate about the Gospel than anyone else I have met - is faith alone.
We must first come to saving faith, trusting God (Proverbs 3:5-6), but then continue as well.
Baptists are actually some of my favorite protestants because they bear much fruit and stand for righteousness. Of all the protestant denominations, I respect them the most. But they are just wrong on some theological issues even though they are well intended.
“after receiving the knowledge of the truth,” [Heb 10:26]
THEN…once someone knows the truth, they can no longer plead ignorance of that truth. They are no longer innocently ignorant of that truth. They are required to follow that truth or they are culpable for the consequences associated with going against that truth they are now knowledgeable of
…sadly, that is the case with most non-Catholics… when they come to passages that demonstrate that there has to be a constant dependency on Christ (Sacraments) they simply ignore/reject them (St. Johns 15:1-10) or they use acrobatics to redirect and interpret its meaning so as to present them as in congruence with their theology:
[FONT=“Garamond”][size=]14 But as for you, continue in what you have learned and have become convinced of, because you know those from whom you learned it, 15 and how from infancy you have known the Holy Scriptures, which are able to make you wise for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus. 16 All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, 17 so that the servant of God[a] may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.
6 For I am already being poured out like a drink offering, and the time for my departure is near. 7 I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith. 8 Now there is in store for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, will award to me on that day—and not only to me, but also to all who have longed for his appearing.
(2 Timothy 3:14-17, 4:6-8)
We find that St. Paul is not simply speaking about how great it was to have been received in the Faith and how we are all saved since we were initiated… but he speaks of the sojourn in the Faith, the struggles, the battles, and the determination to remain Firm and to Stand for Jesus…
St. Paul, the greatest of the Evangelists, did not find solace in his encounter with Jesus and his instant conversion but in that he fought the “good fight.” This is not just applicable to St. Paul as he does not commend Timothy for his great encounter with Jesus from his infancy (which could be a proof text of infant Baptism) but he acknowledges his personal efforts in remaining faithful to what he learned even into adulthood; further, he instills in Timothy the need to continue in the Christian Practice… Salvation is not a one time event where Christ does everything and man only needs to await till Judgment!
…then we have Jesus both chastising and commending the Church for those things which she does that are fully aligned with Him and those things which He despises… Jesus does not render summary execution but He warns that the Church must abide in Him (return to Him, her first Love). Jesus expects Believers to remain actively involved in the Church till His Parousia:
21 The brother also shall deliver up the brother to death, and the father the son: and the children shall rise up against their parents, and shall put them to death. 22 And you shall be hated by all men for my name’s sake: but he that shall persevere unto the end, he shall be saved.