Did Jesus say He was the Son of God? (Actually, yes, in John 10:36, and also, by way of affirmation, in Mt 16:17.)
Do you claim that He was just using ‘metaphor’ when He made that claim? (Boy, I hope not! )
If your answer is “no”, then you have a problem: Jesus spoke both metaphorically and literally. How are you to judge what his intent was, when He said “this is my body”, then? I mean… you weren’t there to see if He was making finger quotes, right?
But, the apostles were there. And their belief – and the belief and practice of the early Church – was that it was a literal statement. Who are we to contradict them, who themselves were at the first Eucharist?
On every Scriptural basis that talks about the Eucharist as the body and blood of Christ. 1 Cor 11:29 comes to mind immediately.
(However, where does the Bible say that there must be a Scriptural basis? In fact, it says precisely the opposite: "Then Jesus approached and said to them, ‘All power in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Go, therefore, and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you.’ " (Mt 28:18-20) You see, Jesus’ command was that the apostles teach. We have records of what they taught; people wrote about what they taught … and what they taught is what the Catholic Church teaches today: the Eucharist is truly the body and blood of Christ.)
I agree: there is no reasonable point here to make an exception by one verse of Scripture while ignoring the many others in which Jesus also spoke literally.
No – it was believed to be Jesus’ body from the beginning. Read up on the early Church Fathers. You’ll see. (Now, what did develop over time was a philosophy that explained how it could be so. However, the belief had been there all the time, even though it took a while to explain it satisfactorily.)