So there we have it!!
What can we truly say?
They are nuts and bolts points but they are highly important
The reason why we believe that Jesus Christ is TRULY REALLY AND SUBSTANTIALLY PRESENT IN THE EUCHARIST and why that is JESUS’ BODY BLOOD SOUL AND DIVINITY is because HE HIMSELF SAID SO
Paragraph 1406 says, “Jesus said: ‘I am the living bread that came down from heaven; if any one eats of this bread, he will live for ever;...he who eats my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life and…abides in me, and I in him.’”
MAN!! (OH MAN!! 😉)
THERE IT IS!!
The Synoptic Gospels say this- Matthew, Mark, and Luke
So does St. Paul’s Letter to the Corinthians
At the Last Supper Jesus said, “This IS my Body. This IS my Blood.”
This is the baseline
We might not recognize that this is NOT THE FIRST TIME that God wants to feed us
In Genesis Chs 2 and 3 what happens?
God makes Adam and Eve and He places them in the Garden of Eden
He basically says, “I want to feed you.”
He gives them a garden with all the food they could possibly ever desire, ever want, or ever need
He basically says, “Ok, let me feed you. THere’s this one tree over here, though. Don’t eat from that. Because I want to feed you. I want to be the one who feeds you.”
And thanks to the Serpent, Adam and Eve basically say, “Well, you know, we are going to feed ourselves.”
GOD STILL WANTS TO FEED US!!
God leads Israel from slavery into the wilderness
What does He do?
He feeds them with bread from heaven
THey want meat, so He feeds them with quail
GOD CONTINUALLY FEEDS THEM!!
In order to set them free from slavery in Egypt, what do they have to do?
They have to take a year-old-lamb without blemish and bring that lamb into their homes for a week
And in the evening twilight, they slaughtered and sacrificed that lamb
They have to eat its roasted flesh and mark their homes with the blood of the lamb
It’s through eating the FLESH of the lamb and being marked with the BLOOD of the lamb that gives them FREEDOM AND LIFE
And now we find ourselves in this place
John the Baptist sees Jesus and says, “Behold, the Lamb of God who takes away the sins of the world.”
BEHOLD THE LAMB OF GOD!!
Sometimes we may think John the Baptist said that because Jesus is gentle like a lamb
John the Baptist said that because JESUS IS THE SACRIFICE
Every Jew, once a year, participated in sacrifice
The Passover sacrifice once a year where they brought that unblemished lamb to Jerusalem
They sacrificed that lamb and presented that lamb to the priest who then offered that lamb’s blood on the altar
Then they hear this prophet John the Baptist point to this man, Jesus, and saying, “That’s the true lamb of God who takes away the sins of the world.”
AND HE DOES EXACTLY THAT!!
He goes into Jerusalem on the same day that the lambs are being brought into the city, Palm Sunday
He abides in that city for a week and gets examined
Yes, He is without blemish
Pontius Pilate said, “I find no fault in him.”
And then He is sacrificed
And His life is offered up, and His Blood is poured out
Remember, He is the Lamb of God
What did you have to do if you were a Jew living in Egypt and you wanted your freedom and you wanted life?
You did not just hae the lamb with you to be sacrificed
YOU HAD TO EAT THE FLESH OF THE LAMB!!
So what does Jesus do on the night before He died?
“Take this, all of you and eat of it. This is my Body.”
He’s the Lamb of God and His Body and Blood give freedom and life today NOW just as the lamb’s blood and lamb’s flesh back in Exodus gave the Jewish people freedom and life 🤯 🤯 🤯
THIS IS THE FULFILLMENT OF THE WHOLE STORY!!
Getting us to Mass is the WHOLE POINT OF THE BIBLE
Ultimately, it’s getting to Heaven
What is happening in Heaven?
Heaven is the eternal liturgical banquet
Heaven is the great sacrifice of the Son, that offering of love of the Son to the Father
The Power of the Holy Spirit that we get to participate in
EVERYTHING IN THE BIBLE IS MEANT TO GET US TO THE MASS
MASS IS MEANT TO GET US TO HEAVEN!!
IT IS INCREDIBLE!!
God says, “I just want to feed you.”
So it is crazy how often we are numb and deaf to that and how often WE DO NOT CARE
We want to feed ourselves
We want something else
In some ways, we can hear the Father saying, “There is nothing else. THis is how I am asking you to worship me.”
Remember, the heart of religion is WORSHIP
And the heart of worship is SACRIFICE
The Father has asked us to worship Him through His Son
Paragraph 1410 says, “It is Christ himself, the eternal high priest of the New Covenant who, acting through the ministry of the priests, offers the Eucharistic sacrifice. And it is the same Christ, really present under the species of bread and wine, who is offering the Eucharistic sacrifice.”
At the same time, JESUS IS THE SACRIFICE BEING OFFERED
Paragraph 1411 says, “Only validly ordained priests can preside at the Eucharist and consecrate the beard and the wine so that they become the Body and Blood of the Lord.”
We know that happens even if they are sinners
EX OPERE OPERATO
The sacrament works even if the minister of the sacrament is broken, is a sinner
They even could be an evil person if they intend to do what the Church intends
Jesus Christ is acting and that sacrament is real and active
Paragraph 1412 says, “The essential signs of the Eucharistic sacrament are wheat bread and grape wine…”
It has to be wheat bread
It can’t be rice cakes
It has to be grape wine
It can’t be sake or date wine
BECAUSE THAT IS WHAT JESUS USED!!
We believe that matter matters
So since Jesus used unleavened wheat bread and grape wine, that is what we have to use
That is an essential part of the sacrament of the Eucharist
Jesus is TRULY REALLY AND SUBSTANTIALLY PRESENT in the Eucharist which is HIS BODY BLOOD SOUL AND DIVINITY
We have to prepare ourselves to receive this
If we are aware of any mortal sins then we need to go to Confession
We need to get ourselves into full communion with the Church
The Eucharist leads us to this place of adoration and worship
The Eucharist leads us to the place where we receive the VERY HEART OF JESUS and we give Him our heart in response
There is so much that can be said about the Eucharist
It’s a little sad to depart from talking about this
There’s always more with God
The Eucharist is the sacrament of sacraments
So we are going to talk about our Lord in the Eucharist again and again as we continue to go back to Mass again and again
It is always new
So keep your eyes open and do not be blind to the reality
Keep your ears open and do not be deaf to this reality
Stay sensitive and do not be numb to God’s presence in the Eucharist
HE CONTINUES TO CALL OUR NAME!!
HE CONTINUES TO PLACE HIMSELF BEFORE US!!
HE CONTINUES TO GIVE US HIS HEART AND INVITE US TO GIVE HIM OUR HEARTS IN RESPONSE!!
In order to do that, we need God’s Grace
We need prayers
Fr. Mike is praying FOR YOU!!
Please pray for Fr. Mike and for each other!!
I cannot WAIT to see you tomorrow!!