Eucharist and the actual Body & Blood of Jesus

Hi

I hope I am posting this inquiry in the correct forum.

I am a cradle Catholic. One of the many issues I have is regarding the host and wine turning into the actual body and blood of Jesus. I want to believe this. Many of my friends do experience this but I do not.

What do you think Jesus meant when he stated that the bread and wine were his body and blood and that a follower should do this often in remembrance of Him. I really struggle with this and would love some Christian prospective.

Thank you.

Marie Grace

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@mariegrace this is a very good question and there are two beliefs here that I am aware of. I grew up Catholic and still hold to the docterine of transubstantiation, even though I no longer consider myself a Catholic. This simply means that I take Jesus at his word, ā€˜ā€˜This is my bodyā€™ā€™. I experience this by faith. In experience I mean, the bread still tastes like bread and the wine (or juice) still tastes like wine, but I believe that I am taking part of his being into my own. ā€˜ā€˜No longer I who live but Christ who lives within meā€™ā€™.

The other belief is called consubstantiation. This is the belief held by the vast number of my friends, who look at me strange when I explain my belief :smile: They believe that Jesus is present alongside the elements during The Lordā€™s Supper. ā€˜ā€˜Whenever two or more gather in my name, I am with themā€™ā€™.

I hope my answer has helped. If you have any further questions, let me know :raised_hands:

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Thank you Brian for sharing your personal experience and beliefs. I do understand the two doctrines. I was comforted to read that in your experience the wine still tasting like wine and the host still tasting like a host. Do you immediately feel any differently after consuming these? Do you feel a more intense relationship with Jesus wash over you afterward? I do not feel any differently and most of the time I take the host and drink the wine and my mind is really somewhere else. :frowning: However, I have handed out communion to others in nursing homes and to homebound parishioners who seem to have a more ā€œspiritualā€ experience. I came away from these experiences thinking my beliefs and spiritual life was lacking in some way.

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I see that you understand the doctrines and you are asking if any of us have had a ā€œspiritual experience?ā€ I personally have never had a ā€œspiritual experienceā€ in the way you describe your friends having. And, I am with you and @brianlalor that the bread still taste like bread and the wine like wine. When I take communion, after I eat the bread and drink the wine, I bow my head and start to reflect on my life. I become painfully aware of my own sinfulness and I am overwhelmed with thankfulness for Jesusā€™s sacrifice on the Cross. And I need to ā€œrememberā€ this. I have to admit that when I was a young Christian, I just went through the motions and tried to ā€œconjure upā€ emotions. But, the older I get, the more profound Communion becomes and the more I cry after receiving it :broken_heart:
So donā€™t worry about not having an ā€œexperience.ā€ Ask the Lord to reveal to you the profound meaning of it and I trust you will find the beauty in it. This thread may also interest you: Itā€™s not your specific question but it has some great insight about Communion.

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@mariegrace these are tough questions to answer but I will do my best. I say tough because the significance is hard to explain as it is so powerful, yet physically I do not feel anything.
I do not feel an intense relationship with Jesus wash over me, but at times I do feel different in that I may have repented of sin in my life and have determined to change that aspect of my life or,
I may be thinking about the passover, the angel of death passing over the homes in Egypt, and how the Hebrews were saved by the blood of the lamb, this can bring me to a very special place at times, yet I do not feel anything or
I think of the ancient Hebrew custom when a man would give a woman a glass of wine to drink, this meaning they were engaged to be married. Then think of how Jesus and his disciples would have known this very well. I think how I am saying yes to my bridegroom :raised_hands:
There is so much to this meal. N.T. Wright calls it a place where heaven and earth meet, yet I do not feel anything.
I am sorry if I am being confusing but what I am saying is that I do not feel anything, yet it means everything to me.

Dear Miss Marie Graceā€¦it is written that righteous lives by his faithā€¦The good news is that there many people believe as you believe and I tell you the truth among those people you would find countless people that you would not get enough of their friendshipā€¦they are burning like candle.

When I called upon the name our LORD Godā€¦I also asked to make His servantā€¦and later on I was basked in His Grace and get to know His Son, his only Son Lord Jesus Christ.

I have met some people taking taking the same bread, and drinking from the same cup but you could not stand their presence for five minuets. I have observe this a bit carefully for I want to know the truth. You can see not everyone burning like candle going the same churchā€¦even drinking from the same cupā€¦I am just writing these hoping Lord speak through these word to you.

You take joy in your faith Lord has called you has he hasā€¦there is much more to spirituality that we knowā€¦For a while I straggle with that tooā€¦and people are divided over thatā€¦LORD God did not send his son to divide familiesā€¦but to bring them togetherā€¦He came to turn the heart of the father to the sonā€¦and son to the father.

I have concluded and I am at peace with my finding and my fatherā€¦everyone are find as Lord called themā€¦Read Psalm 90 verse 1-6, John 1:4 (1-4) John 1:9ā€¦ also read the last days of our Lord Jesus Christ in Gospel of Johnā€¦Jesus told a repented sinner that today he would be with him in paradiseā€¦he did not partake the breadā€¦or wineā€¦it was his repented that Lord was looking forā€¦and he did see our Lord that ever day in paradiseā€¦(note we know with our earthly understanding that he was in earth in graveā€¦but Lord wordā€¦said today you will be with me in paradiseā€¦I take that verse very seriouslyā€¦the repented sinner was in Paradise with our Lord, the Lamb of God, The Temple of Living God, our Lord Jesus Christ)

The Church fathers, eldersā€¦have the authority to decide these things for common peopleā€¦but according to a lowly person like meā€¦that LORD God Called meā€¦is that Lord looking for a repented heartā€¦and live in Light of the LORD Please read 1 John Chapter 3ā€¦it tell us how to live.

For me the bread and wine is a symple of him come from heavenā€¦He is the bread of life Read John 6:35, and also John 6:55-59, not only he is the bread of life, the is also the living waterā€¦Please read the First Chapter of Geneses in original language.

There you would find (God is Elohim in the first Chapterā€¦Elohim is plural form ā€¦note in the same chapter Bible writes that He also made starsā€¦do you see the Elohim of that is Plural takes a singular personal pronoun)

Notice that water of Genesis chapter one is a called by different name then water comes from Garden of Eden which is call ā€¦(if I am not mistaking it is called Sakaa)

The water of Gensense is common water (not pure waterā€¦but have been used for drinking through pages of Bible) Sakaa the water that was watering the Eden is life giving waterā€¦I pray Thy that He show you that in pages of Bible. But there is one water that is living water that is Jesus Christā€¦and that water is List in Psalm 72:6 if you look it up in Original language that water is called Zarziphā€”that water is repeated only once in the entire Bibleā€“and that is no other then our Lord Jesus Christ.

For the point is The name of LORD God Yahwehā€¦and his son Jesus Christ (Yeshua which means Salvationā€¦Jesus in Greek is called IisoĆŗs which also mean Salvationā€¦the question is Salvation from Whatā€¦from this evil worldā€¦from darknessā€¦from our sinful natureā€¦I could go on and onā€¦)

So the point of the Bible is Scarlet Thread of Redemptionā€¦to me the point of Bread of Lifeā€¦Wineā€¦they are pointing to our Lord Jesus Christ and Heavenly kingdom and heavenly presenceā€¦The Spiritual Christ is the Alpha, the Omanā€¦the beginning and the end.

I am a lowly servent of our Lord Jesus Christā€¦I hope what I have shared helped you and help othersā€¦be joyful in your faithā€¦and seek his faceā€¦are you areā€¦as you are called where ever you areā€¦be a light.

Lord Blessing

Abdul Wahab Saifee (Zarziph)

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Hi @mariegrace! Itā€™s a good question you are asking; this was one of the main reasons Martin Luther started the reformation. With that out of the way, lets break it down a bit. So we could interpret Jesusā€™ words either literally or metaphorically.

If we interpret it literally, it means youā€™re actually eating a person. Thatā€™s how some people arrive at the conclusion that the bread and wine turn into Jesusā€™ body and blood before we eat them.
Now, last time I checked, eating people is still a sin, because when God specified to Noah what meat he could eat, he clearly told him not to eat other people. Also, from what Iā€™ve heard, people meat isnā€™t that great either. Try fried chicken. Lot of oil, but itā€™s significantly more delicious and it isnā€™t morally wrongšŸ™ƒ

Now if interpret it metaphorically it means weā€™re taking part of Jesusā€™ sacrifice and reminding ourselves of the importance of it. Weā€™re allowing our sins to be washed away.
Throughout the new testament, there is great emphasis on how lacking the objects of this world are, bread that leaves us to get hungry after time, water that leaves us to thirst after time, so instead of those lacking, physical objects, Jesus implores us to seek the spiritual ones that truly satisfy.

Then we come to John 6:63 which tells us that the spirit gives us all, and not the flesh. So with that in mind, it doesnā€™t make sense that Jesus would actually turn something spiritual (something everlasting thatā€™ll satisfy forever), into something natural (something temporary thatā€™ll fill us up for a bit). It goes against much of what else Jesus had said throughout the Gospels.

When we break bread and drink of the wine, we remember the brokeness and pain Jesus endured for us all. The blood spilt, and the hurt endured. Itā€™s important, because humanity as a whole isnā€™t too different from the nation of Israel: we forget all the kind things God has done for us.
So given to us was a great way to remind ourselves of that, although it is so much more than just a little heads up to what happened in the past :slight_smile:

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Not wishing to start any argument, I want to be clear, I am presenting my personal interpretation and opinion on this question.

When Jesus said, ā€™ This is my body . . . this is my bloodā€™, He was employing a grammatical element called metaphor. It is a comparison. In a similar, one actually says ā€˜thus is LIKE thatā€™ in a metaphor one leaves out the word like and says, ā€˜this IS thatā€™.

The phrase ā€˜To steel my nerves.ā€™ means to make my nerves as impervious as steel, not to actually change my biological nerves into steel wires.

I do not believe God is causing us to become cannibalistic in our declaration of faith.

Jesus said ā€˜Do this in REMEMBRANCE of meā€™ ( emphasis mine) the bread and wine are REMEMBRANCES of what was broken and spilled for our sins.

The spiritual experience one may receive during this observance us directly related to the knowledge of the sacrifice Jesus has made for each of us. If one is not a ā€˜believerā€™, then this fact would have no effect. The scriptures say that if you partake of this ceremony under false pretenses, it is worse than sunning. That is why this ceremony should not be observed by non-believers, and even believers should prepare spiritually before partaking.

As I stated, thus us my own interpretation.

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Thank you Sig. I did find the thread very helpful and understand thatI need to be more conscious of the meaning behind communion. Thank you so much!

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Hi Brian,

I found your answer to be very thought provoking. It made me realize that I donā€™t think of any of those things at all except when hearing or reading the gospel passages. Thank you for shaking up my bible brain cells and leading me in the right direction. I have a long road ahead but feel I am making nano strides in the right direction.

Thank you and God bless.

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Abdul Wahab Saifee (Zarziph)

Thank you for your very thoughtful response. It is so positive and filled with inspiration. Thank you for the bible passage suggestions as well.

May the Lord bless you greatly.

Thank you Dave for sharing your interruption. This is a great forum. Many blessings.

Hi David

Thank you for your thoughtful response. I feel so blessed by how much everyone has reached out to assist me in this area of my spiritual life. This is a wonderful forum and such a safe arena in which to share our thoughts and questions and to support others as well. Thanks again and many blessings.

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A terrific compact book, The Power of Communion, by Beni Johnson (wife of Bill Johnson, Bethel Church Redding CA) has things in it to say or think about while taking communion.

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Thank you Dani