The Sacrifice of The Mass: Why is it a "sacrifice?"

Hello. I’m new to this forum–drawn here after years of discussions with my mother-in-law. While we have much in common with Christ as our Savior, I’m continually baffled by many aspects of her Catholicism. Perhaps our biggest issue is the Mass–especially the Eucharist. Our recent discussion pertains to the Mass as a sacrificial ritual, so I read the Sacrifice of the Mass CA Library entry. There, I don’t find a definition of “true sacrifice”, so I’d like to get some help in understanding how ritual sacrifice is appropriate now that Jesus has made final atonement for sin.

CA boldly declares that “The Eucharist is a true sacrifice”, and is not to be seen as merely a remembrance. This is taken directly from the 22nd session of the Council of Trent. There we find that the justification for the Rome’s insistence upon viewing the Mass as a sacrificial ritual is:

…because [Jesus’] priesthood was not to be extinguished by His death, in the last supper, on the night in which He was betrayed,–that He might leave, to His own beloved Spouse the Church, a visible sacrifice, such as the nature of man requires, whereby that bloody sacrifice, once to be accomplished on the cross, might be represented, and the memory thereof remain even unto the end of the world, and **its salutary virtue be applied to the remission of those sins **which we daily commit…[Chapter 1]

The first question to raise here is: From where does the Council of Trent get the notion–biblically or otherwise–that Jesus had any intent to leave something visible? Hmmm…

On that final Passover night, He said “take and eat,” knowing full well that food and drink is consumed by the body and eventually decays along with it. “Do this,” He said, “in remembrance of me.” Of course, we all realize that the memory we have of what he has done for us on the Cross is also unseen. His teachings at the Last Supper are very much like those at other times. His emphasis was continually on the invisible, as when he tried to get Nicodemus to see the light:

John 3:6-8 Flesh gives birth to flesh, but the Spirit gives birth to spirit. 7 You should not be surprised at my saying, ‘You must be born again.’ 8 The wind blows wherever it pleases. You hear its sound, but you cannot tell where it comes from or where it is going. So it is with everyone born of the Spirit."

The ancient problem for God has been to convince men that real life is within–within our soul–which is invisible. Animal sacrifice was central in the Old Covenant, but it’s purpose was misconstrued by many. In reply to the meticulously ritualistic Pharisees, Jesus quotes the prophet Hosea:

**Matthew 9:13 ** Go and learn what this means: ‘I desire mercy, not sacrifice.’ For I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners."

When we contrast Jesus direct teaching with the statements of the Council, we see that these men of Trent had fallen into the same trap as the Pharisees. Session 22 (above) declares that “the nature of man requires” something visible to represent a sacrifice in order to maintain proper piety. But this is precisely the problem that Jesus came to remedy among we of little faith. To our great detriment, we place inordinate emphasis and trust upon physical things. The nature of man is hopelessly corrupt, yet He offers us a spiritual remedy of faith:

Matthew 16:8-11 Jesus asked, “You of little faith…How is it you don’t understand that I was not talking to you about bread? But be on your guard against the yeast of the Pharisees and Sadducees.”

The flesh profits nothing, and our only hope is in the last high priest–Jesus Christ the Lord. He completed the Great Work on the cross, where he declared that “it is finished.” His final sacrifice would satisfy the heavenly Father in redeeming those who were otherwise lost. In direct opposition to the Council of Trent, we have this in the book of Hebrews:

Hebrews 7:27 Unlike the other high priests, he does not need to offer sacrifices day after day, first for his own sins, and then for the sins of the people. He sacrificed for their sins once for all when he offered himself.

So, the question I pose to the forum is this:

How is it possible to view the command of Jesus to “do this in remembrance” as an instruction to a perform a ritual sacrifice?

My first response is why are you ignoring John chapter 6? Why are you ignoring over 2,000 yrs of clear evidence that supports that the Apostles and Early Christians know the Eucharist to be the Body and Blood of Christ? If Jesus was speaking metaphorically in John 6, why did so many of His followers leave? The Greek used in John 6:54-58 in reference to “eat” is very graphic-it means to gnaw, or tear. What about 1 Cor 11:23-31? In Hebrews 10:10 mentions His sacrifice “once for all”-as in all time-eternity. Catholics do not believe that each Eucharist is a new sacrifice, but a supernatural, real participation in Christ’s Eternal Sacrifice. The Eucharist is the re-presentation of His Sacrifice. You would do well to read Revelation-the Heavenly Banquet of the Lamb-Christ sacrificed. In addition, the Eucharist is the perfect fulfillment of the manna from the Old Testament. Christ enacted a New Covenant-the sign of which is His new Passover. The Eucharist is a true Passover. You could spend three or more days posting all of the ways the Old Testament covenants are fulfilled in the Christ.

The bottom line is: by what right or authority do non-Catholics or non-Orthodox have for disregarding the Eucharist? How do you ignore 2,000+ yrs of testimony from the Saints and the Fathers? How do you know that your personal interpretation of Scripture is correct? How do you reconcile different denominations’ doctrines? Do you believe that Christ wants a bunch of different “churches” running around with different dogmas? Who put together the New Testament Canon? If you believe the Church exercised her Authority in that regard, how do you disregard her Authority to teach the truth about the Eucharist?

In addition, you seem to have gnostic tendencies. Why is the physical so evil to you? Why was there the Incarnation if God was so “worried” about telling us that true life was spiritual? Why did Jesus use Creation when He performed Miracles(putting His fingers in the deaf Man’s ears, mud on the blind man’s eyes)? If Jesus didn’t intend to leave behind anything visible and permanent, why do we have the Scriptures? Again, how do you address that fact that there are thousands of different denominations with different dogmas? Do you truly believe Christ leaves us to figure it out. If you admit that there is an Absolute Truth, do you not think Christ would have left mankind a visible, solid guarantee of truth? Christ sent the Holy Spirit, the Advocate to remind us of what he taught. The Catholic Church is guided by God-The Holy Spirit. As for ritual sacrifices, you should read Hebrews more carefully. All of the old ritual sacrifices had no effect because Man could not wholly offer themselves, but Christ, being True God and True Man, was the Perfect Sacrifice. He was sinless, yet fully Human. He alone could offer True Sacrifice, and through the Eucharist, we offer ourselves with Christ to the Father-true sacrifice!

It’s a good question. Scott Hahn is the man for you for a complete answer. You need to listen to his talk series titled “The Fourth Cup” if you are really honest with yourself and want a full answer. If you’ve never heard of Hahn, listen to his conversion story online. Very easy to find these through google.

Anyway, Jesus does desire “mercy and not sacrifice”–Old Testament bloody sacrifice (Paul also often refers to this type of sacrifice). If Jesus was referring to ALL sacrifice, He wouldn’t have given Himself up as a sacrifice on the cross!

Now, the cross: If you understand Jesus as the “Lamb” of the Passover and the sour wine that Jesus drank on the cross as the fourth cup of the Passover, “it is finished” refers to the His redemptive act of the crucifixion. That redemptive act was finished, however, the “sacrifice” of the Eucharist is not finished–Jesus commanded that we continue that sacrifice in memory of Him.

Jesus is so specific about this in John 6:50 (and following), that “many of disciples drew back and no longer went about with him”!

The Incarnation introduced eternity into time and human history. Eternity entered time and human experience. The baby Jesus isn’t just a stage of developement that happened and passed but a stage of eternal human life that never passes away and is always present to man because that baby is an eternal being.

The Lamb is slain from the foundation of the world. What was the weapon used to thrust Satan out of heavn? The blood of the Lamb.

Rev 12
*11 And they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb, and by the word of the testimony, and they loved not their lives unto death. 12 Therefore rejoice, O heavens, and you that dwell therein. Woe to the earth, and to the sea, because the devil is come down unto you, having great wrath, knowing that he hath but a short time. *

Rev 13
8
And all that dwell upon the earth adored him, whose names are not written in the book of life of the Lamb, which was slain from the beginning of the world.

*We see that this one sacrifice that happened in time is not contained by it. The acts of an eternal being are like Him eternal even if they happened in time. Eternity entered time and human history when God became a man.

The Sacrifice of Our Lord on Calvery and Our Lord Himself is made present and substantially because He instituted this gift of Himself offered at His last Supper with us on earth. He said 'This is My Body eat it This is my blood drink it. He taght us beforehand that it was more than just bread. He said 'This bread is Me. So that the acts that would forever be present in time and human history would be made substantially present to the community that would surround Him untill He returned in Glory.

The Catechism of the Catholic Church in describing the numerous names for the Mass, says;

"The Holy Sacrifice, because it makes present the one sacrifice of Christ the Savior and includes the Church’s offering. The terms holy sacrifice of the Mass, “sacrifice of praise,” spiritual sacrifice, pure and holy sacrifice are also used, since it completes and surpasses all the sacrifices of the Old Covenant." (CCC 1330)

Search & read the Catechism here; scborromeo.org/ccc.htm

Sancta Maria, Mater Dei, ora Pro Nobis Peccatoribus!

mark

Since Christ transcends time, He could celebrate the Last Supper, the first Mass, even though His crucifixion was the next day. Therefore, each & every Mass since the crucifixion is the same sacrifce of Cavalry. It is not a new sacrifice. His one time sacrifice on Cavalry was sufficient for our redemption & salvation.

Good explanation.

How is it possible to view it that way? They were in the middle of a ritual sacrifice of remembrance, he altered it and he commanded them to do so. What else would it be viewed as? A symbolic gesture with no true significance? Why would you command someone to do something of no eternal significance? :confused:

You are also missing a big part of the picture trying to “reconstruct what Christ meant” from Scripture alone. Listen to the testimony of those who the Apostles taught. Most especially be sure to read St Ignatius of Antioch, who was a disciple of St John. St John, as you might recall, wrote the Gospel of John which includes the Bread of Life discourse (Ch 6). Ignatius is a Martyr - not some Johnny come lately blow hard theologian who believes they can “reconstruct what Christ meant” apart from the Church He handed the faith on to. My advice to you would be to read any Christian writings prior to the year 1500 with special emphasis on the first 500 years and see just different some of their beliefs are from your own. Their testimony is UNIVERSAL in its acceptance of the Eucharist (ie thanksgiving) as the actual body and blood or our Lord.

Good luck and blessings!

The Last Supper was a Passover Seder. But, let’s be clear: a Seder is not a ritual sacrifice, but rather a celebratory ritual feast of remembrance. The food and drink is–and always has been–symbolic. As Seder participants remember the slavery and freedom of the Exodus, so do Jesus’ disciples remember His broken body and spilt blood in the Communion celebratory feast. In continuity with the strict symbolism of the Seder in representing the events of the Exodus as God’s rescue of his people, the elements of the Lord’s Supper fittingly symbolize Jesus blood and body as sacrificed to effect a spiritual rescue of lost souls.

Nowhere in the Upper Room accounts do we read of the Twelve performing any sacrifice. Instead, Jesus cryptically tells them of His imminent sacrifice upon the altar of the Cross. He does not call for any ritual sacrifice on the part of the disciples. However, he does modify the Passover Seder ritual in such a way as to replace the memory of Exodus with the memory of Him!

In 1 Corinthians 11, Paul reminds his readers of what is most central:

23For I received from the Lord what I also passed on to you: The Lord Jesus, on the night he was betrayed, took bread, 24and when he had given thanks, he broke it and said, “This is my body, which is for you; do this in remembrance of me.” 25In the same way, after supper he took the cup, saying, “This cup is the new covenant in my blood; do this, whenever you drink it, in remembrance of me.” 26For whenever you eat this bread and drink this cup, you proclaim the Lord’s death until he comes.

The celebration is one of remembrance and proclamation, and nowhere do we read of any a new type of sacrifice. Hebrews 10 affirms that the final sacrifice has been made:

5Therefore, when Christ came into the world, he said:
"Sacrifice and offering you did not desire,
but a body you prepared for me;
6with burnt offerings and sin offerings
you were not pleased (Psalm 40)…

11Day after day every priest stands and performs his religious duties; again and again he offers the same sacrifices, which can never take away sins. 12But when this priest had offered for all time one sacrifice for sins, he sat down at the right hand of God. 13Since that time he waits for his enemies to be made his footstool, 14because by one sacrifice he has made perfect forever those who are being made holy.

Jesus was the last High Priest, and he completed the final propitiation. Plainly and clearly, there is no longer any need for ritual sacrifice.

I read Scott Hahn’s stuff on the 4th cup, but it wasn’t at all helpful. So, again, the question remains:

Why does Catholicism maintain this notion of The Sacrifice of the Mass? What, precisely, is being sacrificied?
Incidentally, let’s forego any discussion of John 6 in this thread. The Bread of Life discourse is–like the rest of John–strongly parabolic, and it takes place well in advance of the Last Supper, Also, John does not record the commemoration commands that we find in the other accounts. There is plenty to discuss in a separate thread, so let’s stay focused on what is meant by “sacrifice” within the context of the Catholic Mass. Thanks!

Hebrews 9:23 (RSV) - Thus it was necessary for the copies of the heavenly things to be purified with these rites, but the heavenly things themselves with better sacrifices than these.

In this verse, the author writes that the Old Testament sacrifices were only copies of the heavenly things, but now heaven has better “sacrifices” than these. Why is the heavenly sacrifice called “sacrifices,” in the plural? Jesus died once. This is because, while Christ’s sacrifice is transcendent in heaven, it touches down on earth and is sacramentally re-presented over and over again from the rising of the sun to its setting around the world by the priests of Christ’s Church. This is because all moments to God are present in their immediacy, and when we offer the memorial sacrifice to God, we ask God to make the sacrifice that is eternally present to Him also present to us. Jesus’ sacrifice also transcends time and space because it was the sacrifice of God Himself.

scripturecatholic.com/the_eucharist.html#eucharist-IId

Malachi 1:10-11 (RSV) - 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. 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.

Jesus’ command to his apostles to offer His memorial sacrifice of bread and wine which becomes His body and blood fulfills the prophecy that God would reject the Jewish sacrifices and receive a pure sacrifice offered in every place. This pure sacrifice of Christ is sacramentally re-presented from the rising of the sun to its setting in every place, as Malachi prophesied.

scripturecatholic.com/the_eucharist.html#eucharist-IId

1 Cor 10:21 (RSV) - You cannot drink the cup of the Lord and the cup of demons. You cannot partake of the **table of the Lord **and the table of demons.

Paul’s usage of the phrase “table of the Lord” in celebrating the Eucharist is further evidence that the Eucharist is indeed a sacrifice. The Jews always understood the phrase “table of the Lord” to refer to an altar of sacrifice. See, for example, Lev. 24:6, Ezek. 41:22; 44:16 and Malachi 1:7,12, where the phrase “table of the Lord” in these verses always refers to an altar of sacrifice.

scripturecatholic.com/the_eucharist.html#eucharist-IId

Hi John,

I’m not sure how much room you leave open for discussion when you enter into the conversation this way.

VC

The Jews did not perceive or teach it that way. They understood that by participating in the Passover feast they became part of the body that was redeemed from Egypt, that had been spared because of the blood on the doorposts and had crossed the sea dryshod. That’s why they were REQUIRED to consume the Paschal lamb - if it had been purely symbolic, or if the only requirement were that the lambs be sacrificed, the people would not have been required to consume the flesh. But they were. (See Paul in 1 Cor. 11:18)

As Seder participants remember the slavery and freedom of the Exodus, so do Jesus’ disciples remember His broken body and spilt blood in the Communion celebratory feast. In continuity with the strict symbolism of the Seder in representing the events of the Exodus as God’s rescue of his people, the elements of the Lord’s Supper fittingly symbolize Jesus blood and body as sacrificed to effect a spiritual rescue of lost souls.
. . . .
In 1 Corinthians 11, Paul reminds his readers of what is most central:

23For I received from the Lord what I also passed on to you: The Lord Jesus, on the night he was betrayed, took bread, 24and when he had given thanks, he broke it and said, “This is my body, which is for you; do this in remembrance of me.” 25In the same way, after supper he took the cup, saying, “This cup is the new covenant in my blood; do this, whenever you drink it, in remembrance of me.” 26For whenever you eat this bread and drink this cup, you proclaim the Lord’s death until he comes.

But your interpretation flies in the face of everything that the Apostles and early Christians taught. What do you make of Paul’s teaching in 1 Corinthians 11:28-29?

A person should examine himself, and so eat the bread and drink the cup. For anyone who eats and drinks without discerning the body, eats and drinks judgment on himself.

Paul doesn’t seem to think it’s “just symbolic.”

The celebration is one of remembrance and proclamation, and nowhere do we read of any a new type of sacrifice. Hebrews 10 affirms that the final sacrifice has been made:

5Therefore, when Christ came into the world, he said:
"Sacrifice and offering you did not desire,
but a body you prepared for me;
6with burnt offerings and sin offerings
you were not pleased (Psalm 40)…

11Day after day every priest stands and performs his religious duties; again and again he offers the same sacrifices, which can never take away sins. 12But when this priest had offered for all time one sacrifice for sins, he sat down at the right hand of God. 13Since that time he waits for his enemies to be made his footstool, 14because by one sacrifice he has made perfect forever those who are being made holy.

Jesus was the last High Priest, and he completed the final propitiation. Plainly and clearly, there is no longer any need for ritual sacrifice.

True. But there is absolutely a need for us to receive and consume the sacrifice. Read on in Hebrews:

Hebrews 10:19-25 (emphasis mine)
Therefore, brothers, since through the blood of Jesus we have confidence of entrance into the sanctuary by the new and living way he opened for us through the veil, that is, *his flesh, *and since we have “a great priest over the house of God,” let us approach with a sincere heart and in absolute trust, with our hearts sprinkled clean from an evil conscience and our bodies washed in pure water. (that would be baptism)
Let us hold unwaveringly to our confession that gives us hope, for he who made the promise is trustworthy.

We must consider how to rouse one another to love and good works. We should not stay away from our assembly, as is the custom of some, but encourage one another, and this all the more as you see the day drawing near.

Why does Catholicism maintain this notion of The Sacrifice of the Mass? What, precisely, is being sacrificied?

The Lamb slain from before the foundation of the world, who is both the Priest and the Victim, whose sacrifice is ever before the Almighty on the altar in Heaven - that is the sacrifice. We offer to God the only Perfect sacrifice, and we receive from the altar the Paschal Lamb. (1 Cor. 11:16-17)

Incidentally, let’s forego any discussion of John 6 in this thread. The Bread of Life discourse is–like the rest of John–strongly parabolic, and it takes place well in advance of the Last Supper, Also, John does not record the commemoration commands that we find in the other accounts. There is plenty to discuss in a separate thread, so let’s stay focused on what is meant by “sacrifice” within the context of the Catholic Mass. Thanks!

John was written long after the synoptics and 1 Corinthians, and can presume that his readers are familiar with both the Eucharistic liturgy and the story of its institution. And if Jesus had intended His words to be interpreted symbolically, why did He repeat them and increase the graphic emphaticness of His words? Why didn’t He say to those who rejected their literal sense "it’s symbolic, why are you so dense? (as He did in other occasions when people missed the point?) Instead He let “many” leave Him, and then said to the Apostles “how about you, will you go, too?”

We can start a John 6 thread if you want to pursue this, but you can’t just dismiss it as being either non-Eucharistic or “parabolic”.

Try telling that to the lamb.

You are misunderstanding what Christ means in John 6. “The flesh” he refers to is mere human understanding which fails to grasp the mystery of Christ. Those who tried to understand Jesus’s words in the flesh with their limited human understanding left Jesus. Just like many walk away from the teaching of the Eucahrist today.
The same type of language is used many times in scripture such as"

John 8:15 You judge according to the flesh, I judge no one.

If the Christ’s Flesh is of no avail: Has Jesus just nulified everything he said in the past 40 verses? If we suggest his flesh avails nothing then we have just trampled upon the incarnation, His life, birth, and crucifixion. If his flesh profits nothing, the implication is his death and sacrifice were simply symbolic.

How much sense would it make for Christ to say:

"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; he who eats my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life, and I will raise him up at the last day. For my flesh is food indeed, and my blood is drink indeed. He who eats my flesh and drinks my blood abides in me, and I in him.

But my flesh and blood will not do you any good and it would be a total waste of time to do this.

Then many of the disciples who watched him feed thousands with nothing…walk on water…heal the sick etc decided at this point they did not want to follow him any more? Why no clarification on Christ’s part? Do you really thing this was a misunderstanding?

Christ’s sacrifice was the final sacrifice once and for ALL. His sacrifice was for everyone. This is the new passover and he is the new passover lamb…everyone must partake or you have no life within you. There are no new sacrifices.

1 Cor 10:16 The cup of blessing which we bless, is it not a participation in the blood of Christ? The bread which we break, is it not a participation in the body of Christ?

1 Cor 27: Whoever, therefore, eats the bread or drinks the cup of the Lord in an unworthy manner will be guilty of profaning the body and blood of the Lord.

1 Cor 11:29 For any one who eats and drinks without discerning the body eats and drinks judgment upon himself.

How can someone be guilty of profaning the body and blood of the Lord if it one has discerned that it is merely a symbol?

And can you explain to me at what point in Christian history people became so confused and began partaking in the Eucharist as the real prescence of Christ?
And can you show me where Christians at any time close to the apostles practiced the notion of a symbolic memorial act?
I can show you what those who sat with the apostles and were taught by them believed. Can you do the same?

Hello VC,

I’m quite open to discussion. Perhaps you can help here. Let me ask it differently:

For the disciple of Christ, why is there a need for participation in any form of ritual sacrifice?

John

There is already a great deal of basic information in this thread that should be reviewed.

Let’s stop right there! We can’t have any meaningful discussion if you refuse to look at any evidence contrary to your position. By what Authority can you just dismiss Scripture as symbolic? How do you decide what is and isn’t symbolic? I could just be snarky and dismiss your evidence as being “symbolic.” How do you know that the Seder was just symbolic. IT WAS NOT. Read the previous posts about how the Jews knew it to be a real participation. Do us a favor. Look up and the read about the term Amnesis It is essential to the understanding of the Passover Meal and how Christ’s Sacrifice is the perfect fulfillment of ALL of the Old Testament Sacrifices. Guess what? Judaism and it’s fulfillment, the Church are Liturgical by nature. Christ didn’t abolish, he Fulfilled.

[quote=Incidentally, let’s forego any discussion of John 6 in this thread. The Bread of Life discourse is–like the rest of John–strongly parabolic, and it takes place well in advance of the Last Supper, Also, John does not record the commemoration commands that we find in the other accounts. There is plenty to discuss in a separate thread, so let’s stay focused on what is meant by “sacrifice” within the context of the Catholic Mass. Thanks!
[/QUOTE]

???.. So you want us to forego scriptural evidence of the real presence which helps explain what is meant by the Catholic understanding of the sacrifice of the mass. Why would we do that? THe only reason there is a sacrifice is because of the Eucharist.

Sorry, the Catholic Church includes all of sacred tradition as well as all sacred scripture not just pieces to helps us formulate what we believe.

Peace!:thumbsup:
[/quote]

I see you continue to rely upon mere intellect and the vague NT Scriptures that we have in reference to the Eucharist. Why do you dismiss the ECFs and the history of Christ’s Church, the pillar and foundation of truth? Why would the Church so uniformly embrace such a practice if it were not handed on from the Apostles?
The Eucharist is, like all sacraments, is a visible sign, instituted by our Lord, that conveys the invisible reality of God’s grace.

Easy, there. :o Here are just two websites detailing the symbolism of the Seder.

jewfaq.org/holidaya.htm

chosenpeople.com/main/index.php/holidays-and-festivals/190-the-meaning-of-passover

Some of the symbolism:

“all leaven, which is a **symbol **of sin (1 Cor. 5:6-8), must be removed from the Jewish home.”

" reading from a book called “The Haggadah” and using **symbols **and object lessons "

“we spill a drop of wine (which is a symbol of joy)”

“the karpas, or greens (usually parsley), which is a **symbol **of life. The parsley is dipped in salt water, a **symbol **of tears”

"sweet, pasty, brown mixture is **symbolic **of the mortar "

“The third cup of wine is taken after the meal. It is the cup of redemption, **which reminds us of the shed blood ** of the innocent Lamb”

“**A place setting remains empty **for Elijah the prophet, the honored guest at every Passover table.”

There is only one sacrifice that pleases God, nothing we do. The only sacrifice pleasing to God is the Eucharisitc sacrifice of Christ. The One Holy sacrifice that transforms our meager sufferings and sacrifices and unites them to His One perfect sacrifice in which our lowly offerings become significant. This is why St. Paul says:

Romans Chapter 12
1: I appeal to you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God, which is your spiritual worship.

This is why those who say that now that Christ has been sacrificed there is no need of sacrifice miss the point and deeper meaning behind Paul’s theology. Christ’s sacrifice was Once for ALL time and we are called to participate in it through the Eucharist. The point is that now that Christ has been sacrificed we can finally make acceptable sacrifices of ourselves, our lives united IN Christ. We present our bodies as a living sacrifce acceptable to God united with the One perfect sacrifice. Uniting our sacrifice and suffering to Christ’s perpetual sacrifice IS our spiritual worship. We are Christ’s body.

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