Thanks, but there are several distinctions he makes which seem a bit superficial.
I think of it this way, he entered the world by “uniting” with a human body and -SOUL- and this is the mystery of the incarnation which surpasses understanding.
Up until that point the universe was merely the manifestation of God’s power – and although connected with it – as all existence comes from his power – (even the devil) – he is not the universe itself – Catholics are not pantheistic.
But to stir something with one’s power is different from being there and intimately connected with something. If a jiggle a puppet, my kids know that I am the one giving it “life” and without me it has none at all – but if a marionette, I do this from a distance – as opposed to putting my hand “in” the puppet. However, when I eat an apple (a substance called apple) something else happens and it becomes my flesh, energy, and blood – In other words, it becomes me. But when I speak of an apple, I am not really talking about the atoms – the physical matter – the skin, the meat, the seeds – To be sure these are all “apple”, damaged apples, &c, but they we have a category called apple and physically it is a whole family of different configurations,etc.
But somehow we know what an apple is.
When we eat it, it is a digested apple (and at that point it is no longer an apple – it has been transformed into me, and some of it has been transformed into waste).
One can see the world mechanistically, trying to justify what “is” and “is not” an apple based on atoms, electron orbitals, etc – but that is really going beyond the meaning of substance. No two apples are identical in every detail – yet they are both apples.
“sub”=under “stance”=standing/stand ==> under-stand. substance is how you know something is – what it is – and most of us do that without counting the atoms, etc. of an apple.
Just so, when Jesus united with the human body in the hypostatic union he became intimately connected with it – transforming it like in transubstantiation – but he preserved part of the human substance of it in a union – not like a marionette, but at least a hand puppet, and quite a bit more – since a human being has “life” without the hypostatic union – so he preserved the human soul and will as well.
At a certain point, that human life died – and was separated from the body – and then he arose, but he no longer preserves the ability of the body to die, death has no power over him.
Yet, he can take on physical matter even after the incarnation.
John 21:10 is a case in point – there is a fish that has more glory than the rest in that it was transubstantiated by his eating it in his fully glorified body. Jesus is not a ghost, he is a person with body, blood, soul and divinity – but immune to death – and that fish … although his animal principle no longer exists, has quite a glory.
There are some technical loopholes one can get into with St. Thomas which I think are more trouble than they are worth.
Jesus in the incarnation was Ultimate sacrament – just as the church is called the Great sacrament. One could say his body was a sign – the sign of contradiction. He is an Icon – for the eyes can see the father through his bodily appearance.
It is in this sense that one sees the sacrament of the Eucharist – and if one looks at it properly they can see “through” it to the son.
By taking on matter similarly to the incarnation, but with his glorified powers – he is truly there, as he truly walked the earth.
Rather than eating it by chewing it, he performs the miracle of making bread into his body and blood, soul and divinity, without chewing – we do that part. And of the atoms, that’s not what we’re talking about. The existence of the bread no longer relies solely on the power of God – working from afar as it were – it exists because of him – himself intimately holding in existence.
And to do that, he has to remove the “substance” of bread.
And from the bread, which he holds in existence by power – he borrows from that power the ability to “be” in a place to “be” with us in a physical sense. eg: the power of being in a location is not lost, for the sign still exists, it does not vanish. He is “there”.
At some point, after the chewing and eating are finished, Jesus stops being united with the individual “atoms” in any useful way except his power – that is the atoms “leave” him and become waste, become allergens for the celiacs &c., become part of my flesh – become me. And in some way – not digestion – we receive something else in the soul as well – him. The Eucharist is real food because it feeds us wholly – Body, and soul Without it the soul starves.
Well, I’m rambling … questions anyone