Shed His Blood for Many or for All?


Hi everyone-

I have a question: I was away from the Church for awhile but have returned and I noticed some differences in the Liturgy. The one that I noticed that I find worrisome was the change from:

“it has been shed,” (His blood,) "for you and for all


“it has been shed,” (His blood,) "for you and for many

Why did this change? I was always taught that Christ died for all of us, not just many of us.:confused:


Pro multis means for many. The English translation “for all” was faulty.

“This is my blood of the covenant, which will be shed for many” (Mark 14:24) and “for this is my blood of the covenant, which will be shed on behalf of many” (Matt. 26:28)

Yes, Christ died for all. But not all accept it. St. Thomas Aquinas puts it this way:

“The blood of Christ has been shed for all concerning its sufficient power (quem ad sufficientam), but only for the elect as regards to its efficacy (quo ad efficiam).”


As 1ke said, the Latin phrase (which is still the same) is “Pro multis”. And this phrase comes directly from the institution narrative in Scripture. So it comes down to how “multis” is translated.

Just looking at the word, you can see that it is related to our English word “multitude”, of which “many” is a closer translation than “all”.

I recall before the change reading an apologetics defense of the “for all” translation because there were some who thought that translation was not the best one (and those people seem to have been vindicated since the translation of that phrase was in fact changed). So I can see both sides to it.

What it comes down to is, as 1ke said, Christ extends the invitation to all, but not all accept. Both translations can be reconciled with that.

And welcome back! :wave:


Thank you 1ke and Joe5859…That certainly clears it up! I had read some prior to actually returning to Mass regarding the changes to the Liturgy to more faithful interpretation of the Latin, I just didn’t remember seeing that particular one highlighted. :slight_smile:


“For all” is more of an interpretation than a translation - “for many” more accurately represents Jesus’ own words (linking back to the Suffering Servant narrative in Isaiah 53). Admittedly, that doesn’t actually deal with the actual meaning of the phrase and the suggestion that the retranslation is somehow suggesting that Christ’s blood wasn’t shed for everyone. for an explanation of that question have a look at what Benedict XVI said about it in his letter to the German bishops.


There is a Divine Will to save which is not limited to the faithful only:

Matthew 23 37 “Jerusalem, Jerusalem, you who kill the prophets and stone those sent to you, how many times I yearned to gather your children together, as a hen gathers her young under her wings, but you were unwilling!
Luke 19The Lament for Jerusalem.
41 As he drew near, he saw the city and wept over it, 42 saying, “If this day you only knew what makes for peace—but now it is hidden from your eyes.
Errors of the Jansenists, Condemned in a Decr. of the Holy Office, Dec. 7, 1690, Pope Alexander VIII: (Denzinger) 1294 4. Christ gave Himself for us as an oblation to God, not for the elect only, but for all the faithful only.


Actually the whole paragraph was changed. Theology is different but there’s no apparent error.


Take this, all of you, and drink from it:
this is the cup of my blood, the blood of the
new and everlasting covenant. It will be
shed for you and for all men so that sins are
forgiven. Do this in memory of me.


Take this, all of you, and drink from it,
for this is the chalice of my Blood,
the Blood of the new and eternal covenant,
which will be poured out for you and for many
for the forgiveness of sins.
Do this in memory of me.

One can see that if the “many” is replaced by “all” in the new translation, it would be an error, unlike the old translation.


I agree with Pope Alexander. I also disagree with the Calvinists who teach that Our Lord died for the elect only.


Welcome Home! Soooooooooo awesome, isn’t it?


Yes, it truly is AWESOME!!! I wandered in a wilderness of my own making for almost 20 years…It’s sooooooooo good to be home again!!! :extrahappy:


Hello! Thanks for sharing the interesting question!

I would encourage you to consider the entirety of the former text:
“…It will be
shed for you and for all men…”

“…which will be poured out for you and for many…”

Christ died for all mankind, but he did not die for all kinds.


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