Of the Lord’s Supper.
Chapter 30, Paragraph 2.
“In this ordinance Christ is not offered up to his Father, nor any real sacrifice made at all, for remission of sin of the quick or dead; but only a memorial of that one offering up of himself, by himself, upon the cross, once for all; and a spiritual oblation of all possible praise unto God for the same; so that the Popish sacrifice of the Mass (as they call it) is most abominable, injurious to Christ’s own only sacrifice, the alone propitiation for all the sins of the Elect.”
1 Corinthians 11:24
Ringing of bells, and sometimes smells, occur in the mass. The sound of numerous kneelers hitting the ground is heard as people bend down to rest upon them. Up front, a man in a robe stands before an altar. He holds up a wafer over his head. According to the Catechism of the Catholic Church, the bread and wine become the literal body and blood of Jesus. In the mass, Jesus is offered up as a sacrifice: “…in this very memorial, the Church, in particular that gathered here and now, offers the unblemished sacrificial Victim in the Holy Spirit to the Father.” (“Liturgy of the Eucharist“, United States Conference of Catholic Bishops)
Such participation in the sacrifice of Christ may appeal to those desiring to feel closer to the benefits of His death. In a mystical way, they believe they are re-living that moment over and over again, feeding upon His body and blood. Yet a “memorial” that makes present the sacrifice of Christ fails to remember a vital part of that sacrifice:
“It is finished!” (John 19:30)
Christian, there is no need to offer up Christ again. There is no need to magically join others at the moment of history when Christ was crucified. In the Lord’s Supper, we remember Christ’s offering of Himself: we do not “re-present” it. If you desire union with Christ, the Roman Catholic Church does not offer it. Only Christ can give such forgiveness. Partaking of the Lord’s Supper in the way He has prescribed will remind you that in Him you already have all spiritual blessings. Praise Him for that!
Questions to Consider
- How does the Roman Catholic mass fit in with their understanding of salvation (by works)?