Friday, February 10, 2012

Holy and Divine Liturgy

Divine Liturgy is practiced by both Eastern Orthodox, Eastern Catholics, Roman Catholics, and some Protestant Churches. Divine Liturgy or commonly known as the Mass, is a commemoration of the Sacrifice of our Lord on Calvary. However the Mass is called the unbloody Sacrifice. The Mass was instituted by Christ himself. Early Christians celebrated Mass. The Mass is the perfect way to offer Latria (Worship) to God. The word "Eucharist" is Greek,   εὐχαριστία (eucharistia) means "Thanksgiving." The word "eucharist" is found in the original Bible, which is in Greek.

εὐχαριστήσας (eucharistēsas)

καὶ εὐχαριστήσας ἔκλασεν καὶ εἶπεν· τοῦτο μού ἐστιν τὸ σῶμα τὸ ὑπὲρ ὑμῶν· τοῦτο ποιεῖτε εἰς τὴν ἐμὴν ἀνάμνησιν. -1 Corinthians 11:24

ἔλαβεν τοὺς ἑπτὰ ἄρτους καὶ τοὺς ἰχθύας καὶ εὐχαριστήσας ἔκλασεν καὶ ἐδίδου τοῖς μαθηταῖς, οἱ δὲ μαθηταὶ τοῖς ὄχλοις. -Matthew 15: 36

καὶ λαβὼν ποτήριον εὐχαριστήσας ἔδωκεν αὐτοῖς κὰι ἔπιον ἐξ αὐτοῦ πάντες. -Mark 14:23
ἔλαβεν οὖν τοὺς ἄρτους ὁ Ἰησοῦς καὶ εὐχαριστήσας διέδωκεν τοῖς ἀνακειμένοις ὁμοίως καὶ ἐκ τῶν ὀψαρίων ὅσον ἤθελον. -John 6:11

The Council of Trent on Divine Liturgy

"The victim is one and the same: the same now offers through the ministry of priests, who then offered himself on the cross; only the manner of offering is different. And since in this divine sacrifice which is celebrated in the Mass, the same Christ who offered himself once in a bloody manner on the altar of the cross is contained and offered in an unbloody manner... this sacrifice is truly propitiatory-Doctrina de ss. Missae sacrificio

"He offered up to God the Father His own body and blood under the species of bread and wine; and, under the symbols of those same things, He delivered (His own body and blood) to be received by His apostles, whom He then constituted priests of the New Testament; and by those words, Do this in commemoration of me, He commanded them and their successors in the priesthood, to offer (them); even as the Catholic Church has always understood and taught." -The Council of Trent: The Twenty-Second Session

 "The other sacraments, and indeed all ecclesiastical ministries and works of the apostolate, are bound up with the Eucharist and are oriented toward it."-Catechism of the Catholic Church
---------------------------  Divine Liturgy -----------------------------

In the Mass, the bread and wine becomes the Body and Blood of our Lord Jesus Christ. This is called  Transubstantiation. This belief is found in the Bible.  The Early Church Fathers believed that Jesus is present in the Holy Eucharist. Many people has a lot of problems with this doctrine. However this unfaithfulness is not new, even during Christ's ministry people left because of this. Luther believed in Consubstantiation. Consubstantiation holds that during the sacrament, the fundamental "substance" of the body and blood of Christ are present alongside the substance of the bread and wine, which remain present. This belief of consubstantiation is not found in the Bible nor did the Early Church Father wrote anything about this heresy. The Church Fathers believed that the Bread and Wine is the Body and Blood of our Lord Jesus Christ.

The Early Church Fathers and Doctors of the Church

"I desire the bread of GOD, which is the flesh of Jesus Christ."- St. Ignatius of Antioch to the Romans(A.D. 106)

"Let no one eat or drink of the Eucharist with you except those who have been baptized in the Name of the Lord,"-Didache or The Teachings of the Twelve Apostles 

"they abstain from the Eucharist and from prayer, because they confess not the Eucharist to be the flesh of our Savior Jesus Christ, which suffered for our sins, and which the Father, of His goodness, raised up again."- St. Ignatius of Antioch to the Smyrna (A.D. 106)

"Not as common bread and common drink do we receive these; but in like manner as Jesus Christ our Savior, having been made flesh by the Word of God, had both flesh and blood for our salvation, so likewise have we been taught that the food which is blessed by the prayer of His word, and from which our blood and flesh by transmutation are nourished, is the flesh and blood of that Jesus who was made flesh." -St. Justin Martyr (A.D. 150)

"Now it is evident, that in this prophecy to the bread which our Christ gave us to eat, in remembrance of His being made flesh for the sake of His believers, for whom also He suffered; and to the cup which He gave us to drink, in remembrance of His own blood, with giving of thanks."-St. Justin Martyr, Dialogue with Trypho
St. Thascius Caecilius Cyprianus

"Taking bread and distributing it to his disciples he made it his own body by saying, 'This is my body,' that is a 'figure of my body.' On the other hand, there would not have been a figure unless there was a true body."- Tertullian, Against Marcion IV. 40 (A.D. 200)

"Let the bishop give the oblation, saying, The body of Christ; and let him that receiveth say, Amen. And let the deacon take the cup; and when he gives it, say, The blood of Christ, the cup of life; and let him that drinketh say, Amen."- Apostolic Constitution (A.D. 375-380)

"For as Christ says 'I am the true vine,' it follows that the blood of Christ is wine, not water; and the cup cannot appear to contain His blood by which we are redeemed and quickened, if the wine be absent; for by the wine is the blood of Christ typified, ..."- St. Thascius Caecilius Cyprianus (A.D. 200)

"Perhaps you will say, "I see something else, how is it that you assert that I receive the Body of Christ?" ... Let us prove that this is not what nature made, but what the blessing consecrated, and the power of blessing is greater than that of nature, because by blessing nature itself is changed. ... For that sacrament which you receive is made what it is by the word of Christ. But if the word of Elijah had such power as to bring down fire from heaven, shall not the word of Christ have power to change the nature of the elements? ... Why do you seek the order of nature in the Body of Christ, seeing that the Lord Jesus Himself was born of a Virgin, not according to nature? It is the true Flesh of Christ which was crucified and buried, this is then truly the Sacrament of His Body. The Lord Jesus Himself proclaims: "This is My Body." Before the blessing of the heavenly words another nature is spoken of, after the consecration the Body is signified. He Himself speaks of His Blood. Before the consecration it has another name, after it is called Blood. And you say, Amen, that is, It is true. Let the heart within confess what the mouth utters, let the soul feel what the voice speaks."- St. Ambrose of Milan (A.D. 397)

The presence of Christ's true body and blood in this sacrament cannot be detected by sense, nor understanding, but by faith alone, which rests upon Divine authority. Hence, on Luke 22:19: "This is My body which shall be delivered up for you," Cyril says: "Doubt not whether this be true; but take rather the Saviour's words with faith; for since He is the Truth, He lieth not." -Summa Theologica Article 1. Whether the body of Christ be in this sacrament in very truth, or merely as in a figure or sign?

"Some have held that the substance of the bread and wine remains in this sacrament after the consecration. But this opinion cannot stand: first of all, because by such an opinion the truth of this sacrament is destroyed, to which it belongs that Christ's true body exists in this sacrament; which indeed was not there before the consecration. Now a thing cannot be in any place, where it was not previously, except by change of place, or by the conversion of another thing into itself; just as fire begins anew to be in some house, either because it is carried thither, or because it is generated there. Now it is evident that Christ's body does not begin to be present in this sacrament by local motion. First of all, because it would follow that it would cease to be in heaven: for what is moved locally does not come anew to some place unless it quit the former one. Secondly, because every body moved locally passes through all intermediary spaces, which cannot be said here. Thirdly, because it is not possible for one movement of the same body moved locally to be terminated in different places at the one time, whereas the body of Christ under this sacrament begins at the onetime to be in several places. And consequently it remains that Christ's body cannot begin to be anew in this sacrament except by change of the substance of bread into itself. But what is changed into another thing, no longer remains after such change. Hence the conclusion is that, saving the truth of this sacrament, the substance of the bread cannot remain after the consecration." -Summa Theologica Article 2. Whether in this sacrament the substance of the bread and wine remains after the consecration?

"Because the substance of the bread and wine does not remain in this sacrament, some, deeming that it is impossible for the substance of the bread and wine to be changed into Christ's flesh and blood, have maintained that by the consecration, the substance of the bread andwine is either dissolved into the original matter, or that it is annihilated." -Summa Theologica Article 3. Whether the substance of the bread or wine is annihilated after the consecration of this sacrament, or dissolved into their original matter?

As stated above (Article 2), since Christ's true body is in this sacrament, and since it does not begin to be there by local motion, nor is it contained therein as in a place, as is evident from what was stated above (1, ad 2), it must be said then that it begins to be there by conversion of the substance of bread into itself.
Yet this change is not like natural changes, but is entirely supernatural, and effected by God's power alone. Hence Ambrose says [(De Sacram. iv): "See how Christ's word changes nature's laws, as He wills: a man is not wont to be born save of man and woman: see therefore that against the established law and order a man is born of a Virgin": and] [The passage in the brackets is not in the Leonine edition] (De Myster. iv): "It is clear that a Virgin begot beyond the order of nature: and what we make is the body from the Virgin. Why, then, do you look for nature's order in Christ's body, since the Lord Jesus was Himself brought forth of a Virgin beyond nature?" Chrysostom likewise (Hom. xlvii), commenting on John 6:64: "The words which I have spoken to you," namely, of thissacrament, "are spirit and life," says: i.e. "spiritual, having nothing carnal, nor natural consequence; but they are rent from all such necessity which exists upon earth, and from the laws here established." -Summa Theologica Article 4. Whether bread can be converted into the body of Christ?

Where is it in the Bible?

"Is not the cup of thanksgiving for which we give thanks a participation in the blood of Christ? And is not the bread that we break a participation in the body of Christ?" -1 Corinthians 10:16

"While they were eating, Jesus took bread, gave thanks and broke it, and gave it to his disciples, saying, "Take and eat; this is my body." -Matthew 26:26

"Then he took the cup, gave thanks and offered it to them, saying, "Drink from it, all of you. This is my blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many for the forgiveness of sins." -Matthew 26:27-28

"And he took bread, gave thanks and broke it, and gave it to them, saying, "This is my body given for you; do this in remembrance of me." -Luke 22:19

"In the same way, after the supper he took the cup, saying, "This cup is the new covenant in my blood, which is poured out for you." -Luke 22:20

For I received from the Lord what I also passed on to you: The Lord Jesus, on the night he was betrayed, took bread, and when he had given thanks, he broke it and said, "This is my body, which is for you; do this in remembrance of me." In the same way, after supper he took the cup, saying, "This cup is the new covenant in my blood; do this, whenever you drink it, in remembrance of me." For whenever you eat this bread and drink this cup, you proclaim the Lord's death until he comes. -1 Corinthians 11:23-26

"Therefore, whoever eats the bread or drinks the cup of the Lord in an unworthy manner will be guilty of sinning against the body and blood of the Lord." -1 Corinthians 11:27

"For anyone who eats and drinks without recognizing the body of the Lord eats and drinks judgment on himself." -1 Corinthians 11:29

"How much more severely do you think a man deserves to be punished who has trampled the Son of God under foot, who has treated as an unholy thing the blood of the covenant that sanctified him, and who has insulted the Spirit of grace?"-Hebrews 10:29

"Every day they continued to meet together in the temple courts. They broke bread in their homes and ate together with glad and sincere hearts,"- Acts 2: 46

"When he was at the table with them, he took bread, gave thanks, broke it and began to give it to them."- Luke 24:30

"They devoted themselves to the apostles' teaching and to the fellowship, to the breaking of bread and to prayer." -Acts 2:42

"On the first day of the week we came together to break bread. Paul spoke to the people and, because he intended to leave the next day, kept on talking until midnight." -Acts 20:7

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