Real Doubters of the Real Presence

disp1A few weeks ago I debated a Reformed Protestant apologist named Nathanael. While the subject of our debate was (ostensibly) sola Scriptura, during the debate Nate raised several other topics, one of which was his disbelief in the Real Presence of Christ in the Eucharist.

I mostly ignored his attacks on the Real Presence. Just as I ignored them on other ancillary topics like the Church’s understanding of Islam. Several commenters told me how hurt they were by Nate’s comments on the Eucharist and some wondered why I didn’t do more to counter-argue.

Firstly, the debate topic wasn’t on the Real Presence. So the fact that he brought it up multiple times didn’t help the debate to stay on the topic we had agreed upon. My interest was in getting to the truth, and specifically to the fundamental differences between Catholicism and Protestantism, of which the theology of the Eucharist, while important, is not at the root. In fact, as I will show, his rejection of the Real Presence is just another symptom of his central error.

Secondly, Nate was not open to hearing evidence for the Real Presence. The tone of his voice, the mocking way he spoke about it (may God have mercy on him, for he does not know what he says), his flimsy argument (that amounted to: “it looks like ordinary bread, therefore it must be”). All these showed me that he just wanted to attack, and he was not capable of having a calm, reasoned discussion on the subject.

So I handled this like I have handled countless other exchanges with Protestant friends of mine. I let the attacks pass like water off the duck’s back and kept focused on the root issues I was trying to help him to understand. I learned long ago that, for people in Nate’s current state of mind and heart, prayer is what is needed. So I prayed for him (and have prayed for him before the Blessed Sacrament many times since). And when I say this I don’t mean I prayed for him in a cavalier way from my ivory tower throne, but I prayed for him as one sinner prays for another, hoping he would discover what I have in the Eucharist.

Realize that if Jesus’ words, “this is my body” don’t mean (to borrow from Luther) that this is His body, we are all in big trouble. If His words, “my flesh is true food, and my blood is true drink,” mean that His flesh and blood are not true food and drink, then the Bible is dang hard to understand, saying the exact opposite of what it seems to mean.

Realize that I could read Nate the overwhelming number of quotes by the early Christians attesting unequivocally to the Real Presence, and he would not believe it. Because remember, he thinks that the early Church was only “generally reliable” on most doctrines. They goofed on this one, he would say.

No, this kind of doubt is driven out only through prayer.

What is at the root of his erroneous belief, which rejects the Real Presence? Simple, the fact that he is his own ultimate interpretive authority of the Bible.

This is why I pressed this point again and again. He interprets Jesus’ words figuratively and to him, that is what the Bible says. That is what the Bible means. His interpretation is the right one. It is because it is. He submits to no one. Or, he submits only to those who agree with his interpretation, which means he submits only to himself. This is Protestantism.

His only response to this was a version of the tu quoque–“you too”–that the Catholic only submits to the Church because he agrees with it, but in fact that is not the case, as Dr. Bryan Cross (and others) have demonstrated again and again. However Nate did not understand that his argument was rebutted, and so he kept table-pounding it throughout the debate.

The bottom line is, you must discern how best to help someone discover the truth in its fullness. Sometimes, arguments are needed. Historical quotations are needed. Philosophical arguments are needed (substance, form, accidents, causes…). At all times, but sometimes primarily, prayer is needed. Nothing can move a human heart but God’s grace.

And so I pray that Nate and all Protestants are moved to believe in the Real Presence of Christ, through their assent of faith to Christ through His Church, so that they will receive Him in the Holy Eucharist and enjoy all the manifold blessings that come through that intimate union with Christ in the Sacrament of sacraments.

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34 Responses to Real Doubters of the Real Presence

  1. Anil Wang says:

    WRT “it looks like ordinary bread, therefore it must be”

    This is easy to refute for if the person is a loyal Protestant. Simply say, “Jesus looked like a man, talked like a man, walked like a man, therefore he’s just a man not God”.

    Any argument against the Eucharist is also an argument against the Incarnation and vice versa.

    • Devin Rose says:

      Anil, I must have received a special grace during that part of the debate, because (I think in response to the second time he said this about the Eucharist), I gave this exact rebuttal. Jesus looked like a man, therefore he cannot be God. Bam!

  2. If the early church is only generally reliable, is Nate generally reliable to a greater or lesser degree then they as an individual?

    • Devin Rose says:

      Perry, good question. He didn’t answer that question exactly during our debate. But he said something related, to the effect of: “The early Church was generally reliable, plus with the help of the Holy Spirit I am able, generally speaking, to discover what is true, and I have found that the Spirit shows me that the 66 book Bible is true, and my interpretation, since I examine the Greek and Hebrew and read scholarly articles, is also pretty accurate. No man can ask for more certainty than this.”

  3. Scott Alt says:

    Thank you for the reminder that “nothing can move the human heart except grace.” This was true for me in my conversion, which happened 2 years ago. It may be worth pointing out here, Devin, that your article comes at an interesting time for me, in that I recently started my own blog and published an article just the other day (the latest in a series, actually), on the topic of sola scriptura. For reasons that will be obvious when the article is read, it caught the attention of Dr. James White, who will be responding to it on his Dividing Line broadcast on Thursday. I certainly can use the prayers of everyone, in this situation, that at least on my side I continue to speak the truth in love and not give into the temptation to rancor which is so very easy when a discussion–even a virtual one–is heated. Thank you for the timely article.

    • Devin Rose says:

      Scott,

      I was just reading your blog the other day after Dr. Michael Liccione shared a post you wrote.

      You will be in my prayers. A few years back Dr. White picked up a post I wrote concerning the communion of saints and he made a post attempting to rebut it. It was respectful (generally) in tone but he included a video in it that was mocking the Catholic Church and devotion to saints. Like you said, it is easy to give in to rancor and resentment, especially when someone has no respect for your Faith, so God bless you with great love and forgiveness.

  4. “No, this kind of doubt is driven out only through prayer.”

    Absolutely…as we have already seen today :-)

    http://www.elizabethesther.com/2013/01/preach-always-use-words.html

  5. Another good one from Luther about the Anabaptists and “Enthusiasts” (who did not believe in the real presence of Christ;

    “They look at Baptism and Holy Communion the same way that a cow looks at a new gate.”

  6. Lee says:

    Devin,

    I’m a life-long Protestant on the road to Catholicism. Maybe this is just an instance where we confess that every analogy falls short, but when we say that when Jesus said what he said, he must have meant it, many Protestants will turn that around and accuse of Catholics of doing the same thing when the gospels say that Jesus had brothers and sisters. Catholics are turning something literal into some other meaning. In other words, Mary could not have been a perpetual virgin. Any thoughts? Thanks!

    • Devin Rose says:

      Lee,

      Two things, one is we must not reject sacred Tradition, which informs us that Mary was perpetually a virgin. We must read the Scriptures in light of that. Secondly, however, the passages that say brothers and sisters do not necessarily mean full-blooded brother or sister. It is a case where the translation and usage of words from their time and language to ours doesn’t match exactly right.

      So you do have to read carefully. And by doing so you see that in one place such and such is listed as Jesus’ brother, but then later it is said that brother was the son of a different woman. Further, you have strange things like Jesus giving Mary to be cared for by John (when one of his many “brothers” would naturally have had the obligation to care for Mary, had there been any). The Reformers themselves read the Scriptures and denounced anyone who misinterpreted these passages to say that Jesus had full-blooded siblings.

      The passage “this is my body” is different. It either means it is His body or it doesn’t. And if it doesn’t, some solid reasons–like that which is given for Jesus’ “brothers”–must be found. But there are no solid reasons. In fact when His disciples all abandoned Him, except for the twelve, that is a reason to think He really meant it, though in a way they didn’t comprehend fully. It also is different from when Jesus says “I am the vine” or something that is obviously purely figurative.

      God bless,
      Devin

  7. Jesus never asked us to do anything, where He would not be present in it, for us.

    Baptism and Holy Communion are two places where God acts..for us…in our great need.

    If you don’t have a real presence of God in those (visible Word) in those things, then the whole thing is going to revolve around you and turn back into you (and what you do).

    This Protestant (Lutheran) knows that full well.

  8. PMG says:

    Devin, I never cease to be amazed at your approach I apologetics.

    So filled with light.

    You shall know them by the fruit they bear indeed…

    I think about interactions like the one with this minister, as well as Protestant posters in the com box of this blog, and at first feel frustrated in their inability not to be able to “see the forest for the trees”

    And then I remember that it was not that long ago that I was exactly where they were. I remember clearly a day I made a woman cry (she was a fallen away catholic considering returning to her faith) when I mocked what I thought was he Catholic faith

    I have learned that nothing if said to me would have any affect ( like your duck/water metaphor) from the outside in. My conversion occurred from the inside out.

    Your time before the Blesses Sacrament was the REAL apologetics tool.

    What IS great about your posts since your debate is how you have gone back and reviewed and deconstructed the arguments of your (for lack of a better word) opponent

  9. De Maria says:

    Devin,

    You said,

    ….Realize that if Jesus’ words, “this is my body” don’t mean (to borrow from Luther) that this is His body, we are all in big trouble. If His words, “my flesh is true food, and my blood is true drink,” mean that His flesh and blood are not true food and drink, then the Bible is dang hard to understand, saying the exact opposite of what it seems to mean….

    Jesus also says that He is the sheep gate. What are we to say?

    Here’s what I say. There is no Tradition that Jesus is literally the sheep gate. When Jesus said, “I am the sheep gate.” You didn’t see the disciples grumbling, “this is a hard saying.” They understood that He was speaking metaphorically. And that is the Tradition that has been passed down through the centuries.

    Whereas, when Jesus said, “I am the bread of life, my flesh is real food and my blood is real drink.” The disciples all left. Only the Apostles remained. And even they were dumbfounded. But although they could not understand it, they accepted it because, as St. Peter said, “To whom would we run, we have come to BELIEVE that you are the Messiah of God.” And that is the Tradition that has been passed down. Believe it! It doesn’t say, “understand it.” The Tradition says “Believe it!”

    Therefore, an understanding of the Traditions of Jesus Christ is absolutely necessary for a correct interpretation of Scripture.

    Can I get an, “Amen!”

  10. Bob says:

    If the Real Presence is true it leads to the conclusion that Jesus has another nature i.e. bread and wine. The other problem is that the bread and wine have no characteristics of deity.

    • De Maria says:

      Bob says:
      January 20, 2013 at 11:46 am
      If the Real Presence is true it leads to the conclusion that Jesus has another nature i.e. bread and wine.

      That is a misunderstanding of the Catholic Doctrine. Transubstantiation means that the bread and wine are no longer there. Only the appearance. Jesus is there present Body, Blood, Soul and Divinity.

      I repeat, NO BREAD AND WINE. The bread and wine are gone.

      The other problem is that the bread and wine have no characteristics of deity.

      No one claims that bread and wine are deities. It is a straw man argument which you are making up.

      Oh, you asked me a question which I had no opportunity to answer. You also asked:
      You brought up this passage as a refutation of Sola Scriptura–”Let’s compare. You preach the Bible alone, which is the doctrine of “Sola Scriptura”. What does Scripture truly say?

      2 Thessalonians 2:15
      King James Version (KJV)
      15 Therefore, brethren, stand fast, and hold the traditions which ye have been taught, whether by word, or our epistle.”

      Let me ask you: What traditions is Paul referring to here?

      All the Traditions. Including the ones that Protestants refuse to believe.

      Surely he is not referring to

      Yes, he is.

      the Marian dogmas,

      The Queenship of Mary-Rev 12:1

      a celibate leaderships

      or purgatory

      1 Cor 3:15

      because these things were unknown in the NT and for centuries.

      They were taught by the Apostles. The reason you don’t recognize them in the NT is because you discarded many of the Traditions of Jesus Christ.

      So what “traditions” is Paul referring to?

      All of them. Including the ones that Protestants disregarded and cast aside.

      Sincerely,

      De Maria

      • De Maria says:

        Bob,

        I left out “celibate leadership”:
        1 Corinthians 7:32
        But I would have you without carefulness. He that is unmarried careth for the things that belong to the Lord, how he may please the Lord:

        Now, show me Sola Scriptura and Sola Fide from Scripture.

        • Bob says:

          De Maria ,
          Celibacy was a later development in the RCC. Paul lays out in 1 Tim 3 the qualifications for church leadership and part of it was to be a man who was married with children.

          What is the definition for Sola Scriptura?

          Sola Fide= we are saved alone by faith alone in Christ alone. Gal 2:16 and Eph 2:8-9

          • De Maria says:

            Bob says:
            January 21, 2013 at 12:48 am
            De Maria ,
            Celibacy was a later development in the RCC.

            Correct. 1 Cor 7:32 is the basis for that change.

            Paul lays out in 1 Tim 3 the qualifications for church leadership and part of it was to be a man who was married with children.

            And yet St. Paul was not a man who was married with children. Did he thereby disqualify himself?

            And what about our model and example? Jesus Christ Himself. Was He inadequate for the job because He was not married with children.

            You see how Protestants cut off their nose to spite their face? If unmarried men are not qualified to run the Church, they disqualify several of the cornerstones of our Faith. Jesus, John the Evangelist, St. Paul.

            Revelation 14:3-5
            King James Version (KJV)
            3 And they sung as it were a new song before the throne, and before the four beasts, and the elders: and no man could learn that song but the hundred and forty and four thousand, which were redeemed from the earth.

            4 These are they which were not defiled with women; for they are virgins. These are they which follow the Lamb whithersoever he goeth. These were redeemed from among men, being the firstfruits unto God and to the Lamb.

            5 And in their mouth was found no guile: for they are without fault before the throne of God.

            What is the definition for Sola Scriptura?

            You tell me, from Scripture.

            Sola Fide= we are saved alone by faith alone in Christ alone. Gal 2:16 and Eph 2:8-9

            Show me that statement in Scripture. Because Scripture says:
            James 2:24
            King James Version (KJV)
            24 Ye see then how that by works a man is justified, and not by faith only.

            Therefore that statement contradicts the Word of God.

            Galatians 2:16
            King James Version (KJV)
            16 Knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the law, but by the faith of Jesus Christ, even we have believed in Jesus Christ, that we might be justified by the faith of Christ, and not by the works of the law: for by the works of the law shall no flesh be justified.

            This does not say “faith IN Christ”. It says “faith OF Christ”. The faith of Christ is the Christianity. The rituals and doctrines which He established to be passed down by His Church.

            Therefore, St. Paul is contrasting the Jewish faith and the Christian faith. We are not justified nor was anyone every justified by the Jewish faith. That is why, in another place, he says:
            Hebrews 11:40
            King James Version (KJV)
            40 God having provided some better thing for us, that they without us should not be made perfect.

            In other words, without us, they would not be justified.

            Ephesians 2:8-9
            King James Version (KJV)
            8 For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God:

            9 Not of works, lest any man should boast.

            In order to understand this one fully, we need one more verse:
            Ephesians 2:10
            King James Version (KJV)
            10 For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them.

            8 For by grace are ye saved through faith;
            Faith is a grace.
            Romans 4:16
            Therefore it is of faith, that it might be by grace;….

            and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God:
            God gives us this grace. It is the first grace which God gives us because without faith we can’t please Him. And faith is a very special type of grace. It is a grace which must be exercised. Faith ALONE is dead (James 2:17).

            9 Not of works, lest any man should boast.

            Therefore we can’t boast that we made ourselves faithful nor that we saved ourselves.

            10 For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them.

            Now, we are ALL created in Christ when we are conceived. Christ has created all that is in creation:
            John 1:3
            King James Version (KJV)
            3 All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made.

            and we were all made to do good. We were all made to keep the Commandments.
            Romans 2:14-16
            King James Version (KJV)
            14 For when the Gentiles, which have not the law, do by nature the things contained in the law, these, having not the law, are a law unto themselves:

            15 Which shew the work of the law written in their hearts, their conscience also bearing witness, and their thoughts the mean while accusing or else excusing one another;)

            16 In the day when God shall judge the secrets of men by Jesus Christ according to my gospel.

            God gave this command from before time began. We were made for God. We were made to be righteous. This is why we are justified by DOING the faith OF Christ.

      • Bob says:

        De Maria,
        Thanks for responding.
        You state that “Transubstantiation means that the bread and wine are no longer there. Only the appearance. ” How do you know there is more to something than just the appearance? If there is something more than the appearance to the bread and wine as being Christ then we should be able to see indications of this. What would be the evidence that “Jesus is there present Body, Blood, Soul and Divinity” in the bread and wine?
        When Jesus performed miracles there was always some kind of evidence for them. The same would apply here.

        In regards to the traditions that Paul mentions, he knew nothing of the Marian dogmas, purgatory or a celibate leadership. These came centuries later in the RCC. They are not mentioned in the NT at all.

        • De Maria says:

          De Maria,
          Thanks for responding.

          You’re welcome.

          You state that “Transubstantiation means that the bread and wine are no longer there. Only the appearance. ” How do you know there is more to something than just the appearance?

          Faith.

          If there is something more than the appearance to the bread and wine as being Christ then we should be able to see indications of this.

          Says who?

          What would be the evidence that “Jesus is there present Body, Blood, Soul and Divinity” in the bread and wine?

          I rely upon the Teaching of Christ:
          John 6:51
          I am the living bread which came down from heaven: if any man eat of this bread, he shall live for ever: and the bread that I will give is my flesh, which I will give for the life of the world.

          When Jesus performed miracles there was always some kind of evidence for them. The same would apply here.

          The evidence which exists, you reject.

          1st. Christ said that He would leave the bread that is His flesh and that the wine is His blood. I believe that. You don’t.

          2nd. Jesus established a Church which has always taught that Jesus did exactly as He said He would do. I believe that. You don’t.

          3rd. This is exactly the same evidence which we have for the Resurrection. It is mentioned in Scripture and the Church has always taught that Jesus did what He said He would do.

          But although the evidence is the same kind in both, you reject one but accept the other leaning upon your own understanding and rejecting the witness of the Church.

          In regards to the traditions that Paul mentions, he knew nothing of the Marian dogmas,

          Yes, he did. St. Paul was guided powerfully by the Holy Spirit and he would have had the full Catholic insight to the relationship of the Mother of God to the Church and her role in salvation.

          purgatory or a celibate leadership.

          He explained Purgatory in detail in 1 Cor 3:1-15. Celibate leadership is established in the Western rite of the Catholic Church BECAUSE of the teaching of St. Paul in Romans 7:32.

          These came centuries later in the RCC.

          No, they didn’t. You have simply accepted the anti-Catholic lies, which is really a form of man made tradition.

          They are not mentioned in the NT at all.

          As I mentioned to you before. You read Scripture differently than does a Catholic. We don’t discover the meaning of Scripture when we read it. We have a deep understanding of it by the time we begin to study it because we have already been steeped in the Word of God by living the Traditions of Jesus Christ.

          And when we see them in Scripture, we recognize them.

          Mary the Mother of God:
          Luke 1:43
          And whence is this to me, that the mother of my Lord should come to me?

          Mary crowned Queen of Heaven:
          Revelation 12:1
          King James Version (KJV)
          12 And there appeared a great wonder in heaven; a woman clothed with the sun, and the moon under her feet, and upon her head a crown of twelve stars:

          Mary the Mother of all Believers:
          Revelation 12:17
          King James Version (KJV)
          17 And the dragon was wroth with the woman, and went to make war with the remnant of her seed, which keep the commandments of God, and have the testimony of Jesus Christ.

          There is no verse in Scripture which says anything about Mary committing a sin. And Luke 1:28 says that she is “ever full of grace” (i.e. kecharitomene), which is the basis for the doctrine of the Immaculate Conception.

          Whereas, I repeat, every Protestant doctrine which contradicts Catholic doctrine also contradicts the Bible.

          Please provide the evidence for Sola Scriptura or Sola Fide from Scripture.

          Sincerely,

          De Maria

          • Bob says:

            If faith is enough to say that Transubstantiation is true then then why not use it for every other doctrine in your church? Saying that “faith” is proof does not prove that bread and wine has really changed. When Jesus performed miracles, there was a real change. If He had just said to have “faith” that He healed someone when there was no proof of it, they would have said He was a fraud.
            The Scripture commands us to examine everything carefully (1 Thessalonians 5:21) so that we will not be fooled. If there is no discernible change in the bread and wine then the claim of Transubstantiation is false.
            John 6:51 has nothing to do with the last supper. In the last supper there is nothing said about eating the bread and drinking the wine leads to eternal life. The second thing to remember is that John 6 and the Lord’s supper refer to 2 different historical accounts.
            1st-What do you mean-“Christ said that He would leave the bread that is His flesh and that the wine is His blood.”?
            2nd-The church that Jesus established was not the Roman Catholic church. The Roman Catholic church has doctrines and structure that sets it apart from the New Testament church which had no supreme leader of the entire church, celibate leadership, office of priest, purgatory or the Marian dogmas. These things were unknown for centuries.
            3rd- You to “lean upon your own understanding” of what your church teaches and also reject the Scripture in regards to the qualification for church leadership for example.
            Where does Paul mention that Mary was sinless (or kept from sin), should be prayed to or that she is queen of heaven?
            How can these doctrines be “steeped in the Word of God” when they never mention these things?
            As for Luke 1:28, the word “ever full of grace” (i.e. kecharitomene)” has nothing to do with sin. It has to do with the grace God gave Mary to bring Christ into the world and raise Him. It is true that there is no verse in Scripture that mentions a specific sin of Mary. Its also true it does not mention the specific sins of Stephen or Andrew either. Should we assume they were sinless?
            Sola Fide means that we are saved alone by faith alone in Christ alone. Gal 2:16 and Eph 2:8-9
            Tell me what is the definition for Sola Scriptura? Then we can discuss it.

            • De Maria says:

              Hi Bob,

              You said,

              If faith is enough to say that Transubstantiation is true then then why not use it for every other doctrine in your church?

              Yes. Faith is enough for me. I have faith in Christ and in His Church.

              But that is a very revealing question Bob. Lets focus on that for a while.

              Are you saying that faith is not enough for you?

              If so, do you believe in the Resurrection? What type of evidence do you have for the Resurrection that we don’t have for the Eucharist?

              We have the witness of the Church for the Eucharist and the Resurrection (i.e. Tradition).
              We have the Scriptures which teach us of the Eucharist and the Resurrection.

              We have faith in Christ and because we have faith in Christ, we believe the witness of the Church in Tradition and in Scripture. Which amount to the same thing, really, because the Scriptures are a form of Tradition.

              To repeat then, the question is, “are you saying that faith is not enough for you?”

              Sincerely,

              De Maria

              • Bob says:

                De Maria– You can faith in something that is not true. Faith in that case is not enough to make something true even if you believe it sincerely or its been believed for a long time.
                We should have faith in the resurrection because there is excellent eyewitness evidence for it. You don’t have evidence for the bread-wine changing into Christ. For you to believe that, you must deny your senses and believe in something that is not proven i.e. has no evidence for it.
                Remember: just because your church or any church teaches something does not make it true.

            • De Maria says:

              To continue, Bob, you said:

              Saying that “faith” is proof does not prove that bread and wine has really changed.

              Only to those who do not believe the Word of God. Jesus said:
              John 6:51?I am the living bread which came down from heaven: if any man eat of this bread, he shall live for ever: and the bread that I will give is my flesh, which I will give for the life of the world.
              That is enough for me.
              When Jesus performed miracles, there was a real change. If He had just said to have “faith” that He healed someone when there was no proof of it, they would have said He was a fraud.

              That is exactly what they did:

              John 6
              60 Many therefore of his disciples, when they had heard this, said, This is an hard saying; who can hear it?….
              66 From that time many of his disciples went back, and walked no more with him.
              They did not believe Him. And you do not believe Him. What does that tell you?
              ?The Scripture commands us to examine everything carefully (1 Thessalonians 5:21) so that we will not be fooled.

              Excellent advice.

              If there is no discernible change in the bread and wine then the claim of Transubstantiation is false.

              I don’t see that rule in Scripture. Here’s what I do see in Scripture though:

              2 Corinthians 5:7
              King James Version (KJV)
              7 (For we walk by faith, not by sight:)
              You, obviously, do not walk by faith. But by sight.
              We, do our Christian walk by faith in the Son of God, Our Lord, Jesus Christ.
              ?John 6:51 has nothing to do with the last supper.
              Really? Jesus’ flesh avails to eternal life but Jesus’ body does not?
              In the last supper there is nothing said about eating the bread and drinking the wine leads to eternal life.
              Without meaning any disrespect, you might want to consider this verse:
              1 Corinthians 2:14
              But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned.
              The second thing to remember is that John 6 and the Lord’s supper refer to 2 different historical accounts.
              1. True.
              2. But both historical accounts concern the same doctrines. The Transubstantiation of the bread and wine into the Body and Blood of our Lord Jesus Christ. The establishing of the Eucharist and the Eucharistic celebration.
              ?1st-What do you mean-“Christ said that He would leave the bread that is His flesh
              John 6:51
              and that the wine is His blood.”?
              Matthew 26:27-28
              King James Version (KJV)
              27 And he took the cup, and gave thanks, and gave it to them, saying, Drink ye all of it;
              28 For this is my blood of the new testament, which is shed for many for the remission of sins.
              2nd-The church that Jesus established was not the Roman Catholic church.
              It is the very same Church.
              The Roman Catholic church has doctrines and structure that sets it apart from the New Testament church
              Matthew 13:31-32
              King James Version (KJV)
              31 Another parable put he forth unto them, saying, The kingdom of heaven is like to a grain of mustard seed, which a man took, and sowed in his field:
              32 Which indeed is the least of all seeds: but when it is grown, it is the greatest among herbs, and becometh a tree, so that the birds of the air come and lodge in the branches thereof.
              which had no supreme leader of the entire church,
              John 21:17
              He saith unto him the third time, Simon, son of Jonas, lovest thou me? Peter was grieved because he said unto him the third time, Lovest thou me? And he said unto him, Lord, thou knowest all things; thou knowest that I love thee. Jesus saith unto him, Feed my sheep.

              celibate leadership,
              1 Corinthians 7:32-33
              King James Version (KJV)
              32 But I would have you without carefulness. He that is unmarried careth for the things that belong to the Lord, how he may please the Lord:
              33 But he that is married careth for the things that are of the world, how he may please his wife.
              office of priest,
              1 Timothy 4:14
              Neglect not the gift that is in thee, which was given thee by prophecy, with the laying on of the hands of the presbytery.
              purgatory
              Revelation 2:10
              Fear none of those things which thou shalt suffer: behold, the devil shall cast some of you into prison, that ye may be tried; and ye shall have tribulation ten days: be thou faithful unto death, and I will give thee a crown of life.
              or the Marian dogmas.
              Luke 1:43
              And whence is this to me, that the mother of my Lord should come to me?
              These things were unknown for centuries.
              They were taught by the Apostles.
              ?3rd- You to “lean upon your own understanding” of what your church teaches

              That is a self contradicting statement. If I rely upon the teaching of my church, I don’t rely upon my own understanding.
              If I rely upon my own understanding, I don’t rely upon the understanding of my church.
              It is true that I now accept the Teaching of the Church. There was a time when I didn’t believe the Eucharistic doctrines (or any others for that matter) either.
              and also reject the Scripture in regards to the qualification for church leadership for example.
              Not true.
              1. The Catholic Church wrote the Scripture and does not disregard it.
              2. Eastern Catholics continue to have a married priesthood.
              3. Celibate men have never been refused leadership positions in the Church as is evidenced by St. Paul, St. John the Evangelist and Jesus Himself.
              4. Which underlines the fact that you read the Scriptures apart from the Tradition of the Church which wrote them and thereby misunderstand the Holy Script.
              Where does Paul mention that Mary was sinless (or kept from sin), should be prayed to or that she is queen of heaven?
              Where does he deny any of those things? Does his silence on those things somehow invalidate these Scriptures:
              Luke 1:48
              For he hath regarded the low estate of his handmaiden: for, behold, from henceforth all generations shall call me blessed.

              Revelation 12:1
              King James Version (KJV)
              1 And there appeared a great wonder in heaven; a woman clothed with the sun, and the moon under her feet, and upon her head a crown of twelve stars:
              How can these doctrines be “steeped in the Word of God” when they never mention these things?
              The Word of God is contained in Sacred Tradition.
              ?As for Luke 1:28, the word “ever full of grace” (i.e. kecharitomene)” has nothing to do with sin.
              Exactly! One who is always full of grace never has room for sin.

              It has to do with the grace God gave Mary to bring Christ into the world and raise Him.

              Precisely. In order to do that, she had to be. I repeat, HAD TO BE, without sin.

              It is true that there is no verse in Scripture that mentions a specific sin of Mary.
              Thank you.

              Its also true it does not mention the specific sins of Stephen or Andrew either. Should we assume they were sinless?
              That is up to you. You would violate no doctrine if you did so. And, you would be following the Law of Grace:
              Mark 4:24
              And he said unto them, Take heed what ye hear: with what measure ye mete, it shall be measured to you: and unto you that hear shall more be given.
              Sola Fide means that we are saved alone by faith alone in Christ alone. Gal 2:16 and Eph 2:8-9?Tell me what is the definition for Sola Scriptura? Then we can discuss it.
              What? Did you ignore my beautiful rebuttal of January 21, 2013 at 9:13 pm?!

              • Bob says:

                Where is the exegesis that shows John 6 is about the Lord’s supper? The context for John 6 is about a comparison between the manna that fed the people for 40 years and how Jesus is that manna that is be eaten by faith in Him. It is the faith in Him that sustains a man just as the manna did for the OT Jews. Notice, that Jesus never alludes to any supper where they are to literally to eat Him. Notice also that there is no mention of eating the supper and it gives a person eternal life as there is in John 6.

                When you partake of the supper do you believe a person must eat it to gain eternal life? If so, where in any of the supper accounts is this mentioned?

  11. God’s “nature” or presence, takes on whatever mask God wishes to use.

    He commanded the Supper, and Baptism…so He is there in it, for us.

    It’s so odd that so many Christians say that God is alive and living in their hearts, but that He could not be present in a bowl of water, or wafer of bread, or cup of wine where His Word of promise is attached to it.

    Very odd, indeed.

    • De Maria says:

      Hi Steve,

      You’re Lutheran, right?

      You said:
      Steve Martin says:
      January 20, 2013 at 6:27 pm
      God’s “nature” or presence, takes on whatever mask God wishes to use.

      But you believe in “consubstantiation”, don’t you? Which means that God is “in the bread and wine”, doesn’t it?

      Transubstantiation, the bread and wine are masks.
      Consubstantiation, the bread and wine are what? Not mingled I hope?

      He commanded the Supper, and Baptism…so He is there in it, for us.

      He commanded 7 Sacraments.

      Matrimony:
      Matthew 19:6
      Wherefore they are no more twain, but one flesh. What therefore God hath joined together, let not man put asunder.

      Anointing of the sick:
      Mark 6:13
      And they cast out many devils, and anointed with oil many that were sick, and healed them.

      Presbytery:
      Luke 6:13
      And when it was day, he called unto him his disciples: and of them he chose twelve, whom also he named apostles;

      Confession:
      John 20:23
      Whose soever sins ye remit, they are remitted unto them; and whose soever sins ye retain, they are retained.

      Confirmation:
      John 20:22
      And when he had said this, he breathed on them, and saith unto them, Receive ye the Holy Ghost:

      It’s so odd that so many Christians say that God is alive and living in their hearts, but that He could not be present in a bowl of water, or wafer of bread, or cup of wine where His Word of promise is attached to it.

      I agree. A good example is when some Protestants say that Baptism is only a sign. As though God were powerless to act through water and produce both physical and spiritual healings. They forget, I suppose, the lessons of the Syrian Army Captain, Naaman. God healed him by the water of the Jordan.

      For Christ, water is no obstacle.

      Very odd, indeed.

      Agreed.

      Sincerely,

      De Maria