This first post of mine will mainly cover John Chapter 6, a chapter in which the Catholic church uses to support its doctrine of transubstantiation. I will cover the chapter in sections, verses 26-35, 36-47, 48-51, 52-58, 60-63.
Let me begin by saying that I am using scripture to shed light on something that is not scripture, transubstantiation. The last supper account nowhere near establishes this idea, nor does John Chapter 6, in fact all the evidence of the new testament points away from it. If we look at what Christ is conveying, it has to do with believing in him and his sacrifice on the cross.
Jesus answered them and said, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Ye seek me, not because ye saw the miracles, but because ye did eat of the loaves, and were filled.
27 Labour not for the meat which perisheth, but for that meat which endureth unto everlasting life, which the Son of man shall give unto you: for him hath God the Father sealed.
28 Then said they unto him, What shall we do, that we might work the works of God?
29 Jesus answered and said unto them, This is the work of God, that ye believe on him whom he hath sent.
30 They said therefore unto him, What sign shewest thou then, that we may see, and believe thee? what dost thou work?
31 Our fathers did eat manna in the desert; as it is written, He gave them bread from heaven to eat.
32 Then Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Moses gave you not that bread from heaven; but my Father giveth you the true bread from heaven.
33 For the bread of God is he which cometh down from heaven, and giveth life unto the world.
34 Then said they unto him, Lord, evermore give us this bread.
35 And Jesus said unto them, I am the bread of life: he that cometh to me shall never hunger; and he that believeth on me shall never thirst.
Let us stop here and review what Christ has spoken to them. Jesus starts by explaining that the people there following him were only after the food and drink that satisfied their human natures. Prior to these verses Christ fed multitudes of people. He voices his concern that they do not look for eternal life, which are the words that he speaks that will be the food and drink that lead them to it. He says, “Labour not for the meat which perisheth, but for that meat which endureth unto everlasting life,”. Then the people ask him, what do we need to do? And Jesus says, “This is the work of God, that ye believe on him whom he hath sent.” Jesus says to believe in him. This isn’t precursor to believing that they need to literally eat his flesh and drink his blood, it is believing that he is the Son of God and holds the words of everlasting life. That he is the light of the world and it is only through him that we are saved. John 6:40, “And this is the will of him that sent me, that every one which seeth the Son, and believeth on him, may have everlasting life: and I will raise him up at the last day”. Those that do this are the ones that have eaten his flesh and drunken his blood. This faith in Christ, those that consume his word and believe, may have everlasting life and will be raised. In verses 32 and 33, Christ says, “Then Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Moses gave you not that bread from heaven; but my Father giveth you the true bread from heaven. For the bread of God is he which cometh down from heaven, and giveth life unto the world.” This is directed to those present, and everything Christ has established points to believing in him to receive eternal life. He is in no way instructing them to literally eat his flesh and blood, but to believe in him and his death on the cross for their sins, which will give life to the world.
All of this preludes Christ’s message of, “Except ye eat the flesh of the Son of man, and drink his blood, ye have no life in you.” Christ has established that those who believe in him will have eternal life and be raised up. This in no way establishes a priestly sacrifice on an alter to obtain eternal life. It is through faith in Christ. The ritual in which the Roman church partakes does not enhance ones belief in Christ. It does not hold power over Christ’s sacrifice, it does not repeat it, it does not conjure him as a victim to offer over and over to God. In Hebrews 10:10-12, “By the which will we are sanctified through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ** once for all**. And every priest standeth daily ministering and offering oftentimes the same sacrifices, which can never take away sins: But this man, after he had offered one sacrifice for sins for ever, sat down on the right hand of God;” And Hebrews 10:16-18, "This is the covenant that I will make with them after those days, saith the Lord, I will put my laws into their hearts, and in their minds will I write them; And their sins and iniquities will I remember no more. Now where remission of these is, there is no more offering for sin." And Hebrews 9:12, it is written, “Neither by the blood of goats and calves, but by his own blood he entered in **once **into the holy place, having obtained eternal redemption for us.” We know that he suffered and died for our sins, we believe his word and in whom sent him. This is eternal life, this is the bread that nourishes the soul, you can’t get it by putting something into your stomach. This is made overwhelmingly clear all throughout John Chapter 6.
Lets look at John 5:24, “Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that heareth my word, and believeth on him that sent me, hath everlasting life, and shall not come into condemnation; but is passed from death unto life”. What does Christ say? He that hears his word and believes that he was sent by God has eternal life. Again, let us bring in John 6:35, “And Jesus said unto them, I am the bread of life: he that cometh to me shall never hunger; and he that believeth on me shall never thirst”. This in no way points to actually eating his flesh and drinking his blood, it is extremely obvious that he is speaking of a symbolic hunger and thirst for truth and life. In John 6:47 Jesus says, “Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on me hath everlasting life”. Again, everything Christ teaches his disciples and the crowds throughout all of the gospels has to do with believing in him to receive eternal life, not literally partaking in a ritual of his flesh and blood. Do you remember when Christ reminded the evil one that, “It is written, Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God.” Christ’s words are that of Gods, these words bring nourishment to our soul. It is strongly established that eating of Christ’s flesh and drinking his blood is direct symbolism for belief in his message of eternal life through his word and passion. This is apparent if we were to just look at John Chapter six, which I will continue to the rest of, but like I said, it is apparent throughout the gospels.
Lets continue further into John Chapter Six.
36 But I said unto you, That ye also have seen me, and believe not.
37 All that the Father giveth me shall come to me; and him that cometh to me I will in no wise cast out.
38 For I came down from heaven, not to do mine own will, but the will of him that sent me.
39 And this is the Father’s will which hath sent me, that of all which he hath given me I should lose nothing, but should raise it up again at the last day.
40 And this is the will of him that sent me, that every one which seeth the Son, and believeth on him, may have everlasting life: and I will raise him up at the last day.
41 The Jews then murmured at him, because he said, I am the bread which came down from heaven.
42 And they said, Is not this Jesus, the son of Joseph, whose father and mother we know? how is it then that he saith, I came down from heaven?
43 Jesus therefore answered and said unto them, Murmur not among yourselves.
44 No man can come to me, except the Father which hath sent me draw him: and I will raise him up at the last day.
45 It is written in the prophets, And they shall be all taught of God. Every man therefore that hath heard, and hath learned of the Father, cometh unto me.
46 Not that any man hath seen the Father, save he which is of God, he hath seen the Father.
47 Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on me hath everlasting life.
Notice in verse 47 Christ says, “Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on me hath everlasting life.” The very next verse is, “I am that bread of life”. It is so apparently obvious here that Christ is speaking of them believing in him. This does not have to do with transubstantiation, or the actual eating of his flesh and blood, but to do with the belief that he was sent by God for the remission of our sins on the cross, that brings life into you! He isn’t speaking of a ritual, but belief in him as the way to salvation! Again, verse 40, “And this is the will of him that sent me, that every one which seeth the Son, and believeth on him, may have everlasting life: and I will raise him up at the last day.”