Do we prevent somebody being hurt by superstition or faith by rejecting and challenging those things? 

Is it mistaken to support organised religion in membership or donations?

If people do good because they are human, not because God prompts them then is it right to risk giving God any credit when they alone own their good?

 


THE BIBLE CALLS THE CHURCH THE BODY OF JESUS NOT BREAD!

Roman Catholicism claims to believe that the Bible is the word of God - God is its author. It stakes its claim to be the one true Church on this doctrine.

Jesus feeds the multitude miraculously and after he tells them not to earn food of this world for it perishes and does not give eternal life and blessing from God but to go and earn the food that does just that. He promises to give them that food. So he is not talking about giving his body and blood as a gift but as a wage. Whatever is meant here is not the Catholic Mass which from start to finish is about gift.

John chapter 6 in the Bible has Jesus saying that he who comes to him will never hunger and who believes in him will never thirst. He said that he is the living bread come down from Heaven and that the bread he will give is his flesh for the life of the world. It will be noticed that his flesh did not come down from heaven, and that the bread which came down from heaven then must be a metaphor. The Jews murmured how can this man give us his flesh to eat. Jesus said that unless they munch his flesh and drink his blood they have no life in them and whoever munches his flesh and drinks his blood has eternal life. He added that his flesh was real food and his blood real drink. He said the man who eats him will live because of him. Jesus said that he lives in whoever eats him.

This seems to support the Catholic fantasy that the priest turns bread and wine at communion into the body and blood of Christ so that they are not bread and wine anymore. The Church does not tell us that the language in other parts of the Bible which refers to the Church as part of Jesus Christ and his body sounds even more literal. The Bible uses very literal looking language in saying that the Church is the Body of Christ. It never gives any hint that this is metaphorical. Yet nobody says the Church is literally Jesus Christ. All take it as strong symbolism.

In the same gospel, Jesus said that he was the vine and the disciples were the branches. So they were all one body.

The apostle Paul taught that true Christians are parts of the body of Christ.

Jesus never says the man has to consciously eat the body and drink the blood. It is possible that if you just believe you are automatically fed because the Bible teaches that you are put right with God by faith alone. The Bible teaches a morality that we all fall short of. For example, Jesus said the most important commandment was to love God with all your heart and the second most important one was to love your neighbour as yourself. In other words, love God more than yourself or your neighbour. If you murder six million people and incinerate them in ovens it is not the hurting of people that should matter so much as that God is offended by it. This is so difficult that salvation can't have anything to do with earning or good works.

Eating the body of Jesus can't do anything for you. Drinking his blood can't do anything for you. You can eat and drink without digesting or assimilating them. Only assimilating the body and blood of Jesus might. Verse 57 may prove assimilation. There it says that just as Jesus lives because of the Father so he who eats Jesus will live because of him. Jesus is permeated by the Father and the Father is his origin. It is far closer than the closeness between us and food, the closeness of us living because of the food we assimilate. Jesus means that by assimilating him we live entirely because of his body and we become it. Assimilating Jesus is as close as the dependence of Jesus on his Father - we assimilate Jesus by becoming his body.

The Catholic stress on eating and drinking but assimilating shows they want to keep Jesus at a distance. He is okay being like chewing gum that you don't assimilate but you cannot let him truly become part of you.

Jesus means when we are saved by him by faith we are fed with the body and blood of Jesus in the sense that we become them. We eat his body by becoming it. We drink his blood by our blood becoming his.

He commands that his blood be drunk. To drink Jesus' blood is not to drink Jesus so this is heavy symbolism.

He wouldn't say that he lives in the man who eats his body for that sounds strange. It sounds like a man saying he drives in the car he drives. He would talk that way if he meant we become his body making him live in us. The meaning would be as follows. His spirit is so close to us that our flesh is his flesh and our blood is his blood. This interpretation is shown to be possible by other parts of the New Testament.

Because of the human liking for idols, Rome takes John 6 as saying the bread and wine of communion change into Jesus Christ. As a result, communion wafers are worshipped as God and carried about in procession.

We conclude that the change of bread and wine into Jesus cannot be shown from the Bible.

APPENDIX

SIRACH 24

This chapter of the Bible prompted the John tales about Jesus being the vine and the bread of life who is our spiritual food. This is a hint that the tales are metaphors.

Like a vine I caused loveliness to bud, and my blossoms became glorious and abundant fruit.

“Come to me, you who desire me, and eat your fill of my produce.

For the remembrance of me is sweeter than honey, and my inheritance sweeter than the honeycomb.

Those who eat me will hunger for more, and those who drink me will thirst for more.

Whoever obeys me will not be put to shame, and those who work with my help will not sin.”