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Unread 12-23-2004, 07:37 AM   #16
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Since I don't have time to go through all my resources here at home, I have resorted somewhat to a Catholic Apologetics website, my apologies. Here is the link for Church Fathers on the Real Presence:

http://www.catholic.com/library/Real_Presence.asp

Here are some highlights (the ones in purple are from my hard copies):

Ignatius of Antioch
[The Docetics] abstain from the Eucharist...because they do not admit that the Eucharist is the flesh of our Savior Jesus Christ, the flesh which suffered for our sins and which the Father, in His graciousness, raised from the dead (Letter to the Smyrnaeans, Ch. 6:3-4).
This represents and early Greek Father, combatting those who rejected the reality of Christ's substantial presence in the Eucharist.

Irenaeus
"He has declared the cup, a part of creation, to be his own blood, from which he causes our blood to flow; and the bread, a part of creation, he has established as his own body, from which he gives increase unto our bodies. When, therefore, the mixed cup [wine and water] and the baked bread receives the Word of God and becomes the Eucharist, the body of Christ, and from these the substance of our flesh is increased and supported, how can they say that the flesh is not capable of receiving the gift of God, which is eternal life—flesh which is nourished by the body and blood of the Lord, and is in fact a member of him?" (ibid., 5:2
In this passage, he is making a similar argument to that of Gregory, that to be saved we need the salvation of our bodies as well, which must come through the physical uniting with the body of Christ, who comes to us through the Eucharist. I don't think that this theology is as clarified as in Gregory, but it is there. So with Irenaeus, we have the greatest European Theologian of the 2nd Century clearly expounding 'substantiation'.

Tertullian
"[T]here is not a soul that can at all procure salvation, except it believe whilst it is in the flesh, so true is it that the flesh is the very condition on which salvation hinges. And since the soul is, in consequence of its salvation, chosen to the service of God, it is the flesh which actually renders it capable of such service. The flesh, indeed, is washed [in baptism], in order that the soul may be cleansed . . . the flesh is shadowed with the imposition of hands [in confirmation], that the soul also may be illuminated by the Spirit; the flesh feeds [in the Eucharist] on the body and blood of Christ, that the soul likewise may be filled with God" (The Resurrection of the Dead 8 [A.D. 210]).

Tertullian was the great theologian of North Africa, along with Cyprian, before Augustine. His emphasize on the flesh feeding demonstrates that 'substatiation' in this passage.

Clement of Alexandria
Now, the blood of the Lord is twofold: one is corporeal, redeeming us from corruption; the other is spriritual, and it is with that we are anointed. To drink the blood of Jesus is to participate in His incorruption (Christ the Educator, bk. 2, ch. 2).
Clement represents late 2nd, early 3rd Egyptian Christianity and was one of the two greatest theologians of that area (w/ Origen). He is actually affirming both a spiritual and substantial presence here, and the substantial presence is again for the healing of the corruption of our bodies.

Aphraahat
"After having spoken thus [at the Last Supper], the Lord rose up from the place where he had made the Passover and had given his body as food and his blood as drink, and he went with his disciples to the place where he was to be arrested. But he ate of his own body and drank of his own blood, while he was pondering on the dead. With his own hands the Lord presented his own body to be eaten, and before he was crucified he gave his blood as drink" (Treatises 12:6 [A.D. 340]).

It may seem odd that I chose a guys named Aphraahat for my next example, but this represents one of the two greatest Syriac theologians in the Early Church (Ephrem being the other who I studied this semester who also had a high eucharistic theology).

Cyril of Jerusalem
The bread and the wine of the Eucharist before the holy invocation of the adorable Trinity were simple bread and wine, but the invocation having been made, the bread becomes the body of Christ and the wine the blood of Christ" (Catechetical Lectures 19:7 [A.D. 350]).

Here we have the major thinker of Jerusalem in line with what i described as the general thought of the Early Church. For more on his Eucharistic thought, you can read his 'post-baptismal catecheses', numbers 4 and 5.

Theodore of Mopsuestia
When [Christ] gave the bread he did not say, ‘This is the symbol of my body,’ but, ‘This is my body.’ In the same way, when he gave the cup of his blood he did not say, ‘This is the symbol of my blood,’ but, ‘This is my blood’; for he wanted us to look upon the [Eucharistic elements] after their reception of grace and the coming of the Holy Spirit not according to their nature, but receive them as they are, the body and blood of our Lord. We ought . . . not regard [the elements] merely as bread and cup, but as the body and blood of the Lord, into which they were transformed by the descent of the Holy Spirit" (Catechetical Homilies 5:1 [A.D. 405]).

This represents a major Eastern Father.

I have provided Early European, N. African, Syriac, Egyptian and 4 Eastern Fathers to illustrate how widespread 'substantiation' was in the early Church (note also that these are not just random people chosen but are all one of the greatest theologicans of the Early Church in the areas they represent.

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Unread 12-23-2004, 07:45 AM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by +Donny
The only quote I have seen that supported 'substantiation' was the one from Gregory of Nyssa. I think you are either thinking too lowly of Calvin's view or two highly of the ECF.
If you read my paper on Calvin and Zwingli, you will see that i understand Calvin's eucharistic theology, and that he claimed to adhere to the doctrine of the Real Presence found in the Church Fathers. However, while his teaching is much closer than Zwingli's, i think that it is certainly lower than the thrust of the Early Church which is substantial thinking.

As for John 6, as I said, I think i provided an explanation, but that i never claimed it was a great one. I need to look over that passage more.

However, I am going home for Christmas today and I am not sure how much I'll be online until next Wednesday when I return. If you want to respond to my post, I'll try to come on here and respond; if i can't, i'll just respond next week. Have a Blessed Christmas.
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Reckless and incompetent expounders of Holy Scripture bring untold trouble and sorrow on their wiser brethren when they are caught in one of their mischievous false opnions and are taken to task by those who are not bound by the authority of our sacred books. For then, to defend their utterly foolish and obviously untrue statements, they will try to call upon Holy Scripture for proof and even recite from memory many passages which they think support their position, although 'they understand neither what they say nor the things about which they make assertion
(St. Augustine The Literal Meaning of Genesis I.19.39)

Note: (due to confusion) Augustine here is writing against those who interpret Genesis "literally" (i.e. 6 day creation)
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Unread 12-23-2004, 07:48 AM   #18
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one body

Has anyone ever taught transubstantiation of the church? I Corinthians 10 says that we are the bread, because we all participate in the bread. In I Corinthians 11, Paul warns that many were sick and and had fallen asleep because they did not discern the Lord's body. The passage shows us that the bread is the Lord's body. A few verses later, Paul says that the church is the Lord's body. The Corinthians were not regarding the Lord's body by some of them gobbling up all the food and guzzling down all the wine before the poor could get there, shutting the poor out of the Lord's body. They were showing disrespect to the Lord's body by eating the bread in a wrong way, and by showing disrespect to the poorer members of the church.

Has anyone argued that Christians are transformed into Christ's flesh in the same way they argue it about the eucharist?
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Unread 12-23-2004, 08:41 AM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by +Donny
I didn't bring up the ECF. If you are going to claim that the ECF support transubstantiation, then yes, I will need very direct, unambiguous proof of that.
Hmm, okay, then what exactly did you mean by this?

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If you could quote early traditions that support specifically transubstantiation, then you have shown something
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Unread 12-23-2004, 10:32 PM   #20
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Hmm, okay, then what exactly did you mean by this?
It was in response to what was said earlier in the other thread by pennypacker (I need a name; I won't use that phrase again).
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Unread 12-24-2004, 01:05 AM   #21
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Okay, well anyways some these quotes provided by PennyPacker seem very nice. These 2 in particular...

Irenaeus
"He has declared the cup, a part of creation, to be his own blood, from which he causes our blood to flow; and the bread, a part of creation, he has established as his own body, from which he gives increase unto our bodies. When, therefore, the mixed cup [wine and water] and the baked bread receives the Word of God and becomes the Eucharist, the body of Christ, and from these the substance of our flesh is increased and supported, how can they say that the flesh is not capable of receiving the gift of God, which is eternal life—flesh which is nourished by the body and blood of the Lord, and is in fact a member of him?" (ibid., 5:2

This says that the fleshs is nourished by the Body and Blood, not just our souls.


Tertullian
"[T]here is not a soul that can at all procure salvation, except it believe whilst it is in the flesh, so true is it that the flesh is the very condition on which salvation hinges. And since the soul is, in consequence of its salvation, chosen to the service of God, it is the flesh which actually renders it capable of such service. The flesh, indeed, is washed [in baptism], in order that the soul may be cleansed . . . the flesh is shadowed with the imposition of hands [in confirmation], that the soul also may be illuminated by the Spirit; the flesh feeds [in the Eucharist] on the body and blood of Christ, that the soul likewise may be filled with God" (The Resurrection of the Dead 8 [A.D. 210]).

This one seems very direct in saying that the flesh does feed on the Body and Blood of Christ.
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Unread 12-24-2004, 01:26 AM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pennypacker11
Since I don't have time to go through all my resources here at home, I have resorted somewhat to a Catholic Apologetics website, my apologies. Here is the link for Church Fathers on the Real Presence:

http://www.catholic.com/library/Real_Presence.asp

Here are some highlights (the ones in purple are from my hard copies):
You are cheating. Cheater.
BTW, I'll just go over these. Once I address these, we can go over the others on that site, if you want. I have a feeling you are going to have me digging through my ECF set quite a lot, so I am going to love this. Thanks again for the charitable conversation.

Quote:
Ignatius of Antioch
[The Docetics] abstain from the Eucharist...because they do not admit that the Eucharist is the flesh of our Savior Jesus Christ, the flesh which suffered for our sins and which the Father, in His graciousness, raised from the dead (Letter to the Smyrnaeans, Ch. 6:3-4).
This represents and early Greek Father, combatting those who rejected the reality of Christ's substantial presence in the Eucharist.
Something I actually have read. Good ol' Ignatius. Now, let's see what we find...

Okay, this quote must have different chapter separations, because I found this at the beginning of chapter 7 in the shorter version.
Anyway, I think this reference is contextually pretty weak. First of all, it is right in the middle of condemnation of heretics who denied that Christ came in the flesh (Docetics, you said). He says, "they confess not the Eucharist to be the flesh of our Saviour Jesus Christ" in the context of condeming this heresy, which make sense. Of course the Eucharist is not the flesh of Christ; He didn't come in the flesh! He goes on to speak of Christ's death and resurrection, which means the emphasis here is in the reality of the Incarnation, not necessarily a substantial transformation of the bread in the Eucharist. I can see where you are coming from, but I think the context makes this a bit shaky.
Also, I didn't find this reference in the longer version. I think the shorter is supposedly more accurate, though, so I'm not sure if this means anything.

Quote:
Irenaeus
"He has declared the cup, a part of creation, to be his own blood, from which he causes our blood to flow; and the bread, a part of creation, he has established as his own body, from which he gives increase unto our bodies. When, therefore, the mixed cup [wine and water] and the baked bread receives the Word of God and becomes the Eucharist, the body of Christ, and from these the substance of our flesh is increased and supported, how can they say that the flesh is not capable of receiving the gift of God, which is eternal life—flesh which is nourished by the body and blood of the Lord, and is in fact a member of him?" (ibid., 5:2

In this passage, he is making a similar argument to that of Gregory, that to be saved we need the salvation of our bodies as well, which must come through the physical uniting with the body of Christ, who comes to us through the Eucharist. I don't think that this theology is as clarified as in Gregory, but it is there. So with Irenaeus, we have the greatest European Theologian of the 2nd Century clearly expounding 'substantiation'.
I don't think this is clear 'substantiation', because, like you said, it is not as developed as that of Gregory. I don't know, as his language seems so odd. In section two (where the quote is) there is nothing I would disagree with. It seems almost like he is claiming Christ's body and blood work through the elements, rather than necessarily becoming the elements (as he repeatedly refers to the bread and wine naturally). Honestly, the only thing it seems you can prove, even from section three, is that Irenaeus is appealing to the fact that we are clearly nourished by the body and blood of Christ. If the body and blood can nourish us, and even moreso, that they nourish us in the Eucharist, through the elements, how can we say that our bodies are not saved? His resurrection appeal is a bit odd, as he compares the Eucharist to our resurrection. He speaks off cutting from the vine planted in the ground fructifying in its season and a corn of wheat decomposing the ground to yield harvest, which produces the elements in the Eucharist, and then, with the Word of God, these elements become the Eucharist. This is compared to the resurrection, when we put on the incorruptible. This is definitely not 'transubstantiation', and not even necessarily 'substantiation'. Some sort of change to the elements must be granted, but it seems more of a sanctifying change or something, not necessarily 'substantiation'.
Really, I don't know. This section is just too odd for me to go either way on it.

Quote:
Tertullian
"[T]here is not a soul that can at all procure salvation, except it believe whilst it is in the flesh, so true is it that the flesh is the very condition on which salvation hinges. And since the soul is, in consequence of its salvation, chosen to the service of God, it is the flesh which actually renders it capable of such service. The flesh, indeed, is washed [in baptism], in order that the soul may be cleansed . . . the flesh is shadowed with the imposition of hands [in confirmation], that the soul also may be illuminated by the Spirit; the flesh feeds [in the Eucharist] on the body and blood of Christ, that the soul likewise may be filled with God" (The Resurrection of the Dead 8 [A.D. 210]).

Tertullian was the great theologian of North Africa, along with Cyprian, before Augustine. His emphasize on the flesh feeding demonstrates that 'substatiation' in this passage.
I'm not even going to look this one up. Whether he believed it or not, he used horrendous logic to support it.
Now, you could draw a distinction and note that he does recognize a difference between the spiritual and physical. We feed on the Eucharist that, likewise, we are filled with God spiritually. However, the argument is just too weak in this quotation to bother to support.

Quote:
Clement of Alexandria
Now, the blood of the Lord is twofold: one is corporeal, redeeming us from corruption; the other is spriritual, and it is with that we are anointed. To drink the blood of Jesus is to participate in His incorruption (Christ the Educator, bk. 2, ch. 2).
Clement represents late 2nd, early 3rd Egyptian Christianity and was one of the two greatest theologians of that area (w/ Origen). He is actually affirming both a spiritual and substantial presence here, and the substantial presence is again for the healing of the corruption of our bodies.
At first, I thought this was a stretch, but I think it just depends on how we define 'substantiation'. He clearly supports some sort of carnal benefit from the blood of Christ, but he still is so far from affirming some sort of transformation of the mixed wine that I hardly can call it 'substantiation'. Sure, he seems to affirm a substantial consumption of Christ's flesh and blood, but he does not necessarily affirm the idea that the elements are transformed into Christ, or that Christ's flesh and blood are presented alongside the elements, as in consubstantiation. This, taken with the previous quotes, is developing a very interesting view of the Eucharist. It seems that they are claiming that, by virtue of the Incarnation, Christ saves our whole being, our body and our soul, and that this is pictured in the Eucharist, where both our body and our soul (seemingly, our soul through our body) feed on Christ, so that our body and soul are redeemed. I don't believe it, and it is so ambiguously presented that it is rendered it almost impossible to fully articulate, but it is interesting, nonetheless.

Quote:
Aphraahat
"After having spoken thus [at the Last Supper], the Lord rose up from the place where he had made the Passover and had given his body as food and his blood as drink, and he went with his disciples to the place where he was to be arrested. But he ate of his own body and drank of his own blood, while he was pondering on the dead. With his own hands the Lord presented his own body to be eaten, and before he was crucified he gave his blood as drink" (Treatises 12:6 [A.D. 340]).

It may seem odd that I chose a guys named Aphraahat for my next example, but this represents one of the two greatest Syriac theologians in the Early Church (Ephrem being the other who I studied this semester who also had a high eucharistic theology).
I can't find it, but it seems pretty obvious. I can't argue here.

Quote:
Cyril of Jerusalem
The bread and the wine of the Eucharist before the holy invocation of the adorable Trinity were simple bread and wine, but the invocation having been made, the bread becomes the body of Christ and the wine the blood of Christ" (Catechetical Lectures 19:7 [A.D. 350]).

Here we have the major thinker of Jerusalem in line with what i described as the general thought of the Early Church. For more on his Eucharistic thought, you can read his 'post-baptismal catecheses', numbers 4 and 5.
I just read a long excerpt from Schaff on the ECF and the Eucharist and he is saying, in a much more organized way, what I was thinking. They clearly acknowledge a change in the elements, but not necessarily a substantial change, and certainly do not espouse a Roman Catholic view of the sacraments. Basically, the language is unclear as to what the change is, but the result is certainly a partaking of the body and blood of Christ, one that seems to be in some sense substantial, though not necessarily a substantial transformation of the elements. Needless to say, the opinion of the ECF's is far too vague to support transubstantiation, and probably not even substantiation.

Quote:
Theodore of Mopsuestia
When [Christ] gave the bread he did not say, ‘This is the symbol of my body,’ but, ‘This is my body.’ In the same way, when he gave the cup of his blood he did not say, ‘This is the symbol of my blood,’ but, ‘This is my blood’; for he wanted us to look upon the [Eucharistic elements] after their reception of grace and the coming of the Holy Spirit not according to their nature, but receive them as they are, the body and blood of our Lord. We ought . . . not regard [the elements] merely as bread and cup, but as the body and blood of the Lord, into which they were transformed by the descent of the Holy Spirit" (Catechetical Homilies 5:1 [A.D. 405]).

This represents a major Eastern Father.
From what little I could find on this guy, he actually seemed to turn out to be a heretic, I think involved in Nestorianism or something, but definitely Christological. Plus, I couldn't find his Homilies in my ECF index, nor even on google. This one doesn't count, so there.

Quote:
I have provided Early European, N. African, Syriac, Egyptian and 4 Eastern Fathers to illustrate how widespread 'substantiation' was in the early Church (note also that these are not just random people chosen but are all one of the greatest theologicans of the Early Church in the areas they represent.
You have given me some great info and at least shown me that the ECF seemed to have some sort of view that was above that of Calvin's, but below that of the Roman Catholic church. It seems, I suppose, around the level of consubstantiation, though definitely a far different theory from that of Luther.
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Unread 12-24-2004, 01:28 AM   #23
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If you read my paper on Calvin and Zwingli, you will see that i understand Calvin's eucharistic theology, and that he claimed to adhere to the doctrine of the Real Presence found in the Church Fathers. However, while his teaching is much closer than Zwingli's, i think that it is certainly lower than the thrust of the Early Church which is substantial thinking.
I will check your paper out.

Quote:
As for John 6, as I said, I think i provided an explanation, but that i never claimed it was a great one. I need to look over that passage more.
No problem at all; take your time. I do, too.

Quote:
However, I am going home for Christmas today and I am not sure how much I'll be online until next Wednesday when I return. If you want to respond to my post, I'll try to come on here and respond; if i can't, i'll just respond next week. Have a Blessed Christmas.
You too, and God bless.
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Unread 12-29-2004, 08:16 AM   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by +Donny
Ignatius
Okay, this quote must have different chapter separations, because I found this at the beginning of chapter 7 in the shorter version.
Anyway, I think this reference is contextually pretty weak. First of all, it is right in the middle of condemnation of heretics who denied that Christ came in the flesh (Docetics, you said). He says, "they confess not the Eucharist to be the flesh of our Saviour Jesus Christ" in the context of condeming this heresy, which make sense. Of course the Eucharist is not the flesh of Christ; He didn't come in the flesh! He goes on to speak of Christ's death and resurrection, which means the emphasis here is in the reality of the Incarnation, not necessarily a substantial transformation of the bread in the Eucharist. I can see where you are coming from, but I think the context makes this a bit shaky.
Also, I didn't find this reference in the longer version. I think the shorter is supposedly more accurate, though, so I'm not sure if this means anything.
The fact that he is combatting a group of 'Docetists' doesn't really weaken the claim he is making much. Docetists would have no problem affirming Calvins' or Zwingli's eucharistic theology, especially not Zwingli's since in neither one, including Calvin (see paper) is Christ's presence either substantial or actually united to the bread. Thus, I think that the claim that Ignatius is making should be understood as substantial.

Quote:
Originally Posted by +Donny
Irenaeus
I don't think this is clear 'substantiation', because, like you said, it is not as developed as that of Gregory. I don't know, as his language seems so odd. In section two (where the quote is) there is nothing I would disagree with. It seems almost like he is claiming Christ's body and blood work through the elements, rather than necessarily becoming the elements (as he repeatedly refers to the bread and wine naturally). Honestly, the only thing it seems you can prove, even from section three, is that Irenaeus is appealing to the fact that we are clearly nourished by the body and blood of Christ. If the body and blood can nourish us, and even moreso, that they nourish us in the Eucharist, through the elements, how can we say that our bodies are not saved? His resurrection appeal is a bit odd, as he compares the Eucharist to our resurrection. He speaks off cutting from the vine planted in the ground fructifying in its season and a corn of wheat decomposing the ground to yield harvest, which produces the elements in the Eucharist, and then, with the Word of God, these elements become the Eucharist. This is compared to the resurrection, when we put on the incorruptible. This is definitely not 'transubstantiation', and not even necessarily 'substantiation'. Some sort of change to the elements must be granted, but it seems more of a sanctifying change or something, not necessarily 'substantiation'.
Really, I don't know. This section is just too odd for me to go either way on it.
I acknowledge that many of the Church Fathers had some odd ideas and some odd explanations, thus the reason why when one appeals to them one needs lots of examples. The line that I think clearly points to 'substantiation' is that "from these the substance of our flesh is increased and supported." Irenaeus is describing the common early church idea, quoted earlier in Gregory, that we must be saved body and soul (which is done definitely at the Resurrection). However, in a sense, our bodies become more liike our Resurrected bodies, more like Christ's through the Eucharist. Whether we agree with this line of thinking, they are trying to come up with an explanation for a ritual and teaching (substantial presence) which was present since the time of Christ.
Quote:
Originally Posted by +Donny
Tertullian
I'm not even going to look this one up. Whether he believed it or not, he used horrendous logic to support it.
Now, you could draw a distinction and note that he does recognize a difference between the spiritual and physical. We feed on the Eucharist that, likewise, we are filled with God spiritually. However, the argument is just too weak in this quotation to bother to support.
Tertullian seems very odd since first, he is, and second, he is one of the few theologians in the early church that should not be described as Platonic. Look at the line "The flesh feeds on the body and blood of Christ". The is clearly Lutheran or Catholic; Calvin would say "our soul feeds on the body and blood of Christ through faith". Zwingli would even go that far.

Quote:
Originally Posted by +Donny
Clement of Alexandria
At first, I thought this was a stretch, but I think it just depends on how we define 'substantiation'. He clearly supports some sort of carnal benefit from the blood of Christ, but he still is so far from affirming some sort of transformation of the mixed wine that I hardly can call it 'substantiation'. Sure, he seems to affirm a substantial consumption of Christ's flesh and blood, but he does not necessarily affirm the idea that the elements are transformed into Christ, or that Christ's flesh and blood are presented alongside the elements, as in consubstantiation. This, taken with the previous quotes, is developing a very interesting view of the Eucharist. It seems that they are claiming that, by virtue of the Incarnation, Christ saves our whole being, our body and our soul, and that this is pictured in the Eucharist, where both our body and our soul (seemingly, our soul through our body) feed on Christ, so that our body and soul are redeemed. I don't believe it, and it is so ambiguously presented that it is rendered it almost impossible to fully articulate, but it is interesting, nonetheless.
You are right that he doesn't explicitely talk about the transformation of the elements, but I think that it is logical to deduce that from the statement given.
As for their backing, think of it this way:

You believe (I assume) that when we are in heaven are souls are spotless and incorruptible; similarly, after the resurrection, are bodies are as well. However, we also believe in Sactification here one earth, but we normally focus solely on the sanctification of the soul, which becomes more holy now but will only reach perfection after death in heaven. The early church saw the eucharist as the vehicle through which Christ transformed our bodies like He will do ultimately in the Resurrection.
Quote:
Originally Posted by +Donny
Aphraahat
I can't find it, but it seems pretty obvious. I can't argue here.
Booyah! And I remind you just how much this figure represents, the entire theological and liturgical tradition of Syriac Christianity.
Quote:
Originally Posted by +Donny
Cyril of Jerusalem
I just read a long excerpt from Schaff on the ECF and the Eucharist and he is saying, in a much more organized way, what I was thinking. They clearly acknowledge a change in the elements, but not necessarily a substantial change, and certainly do not espouse a Roman Catholic view of the sacraments. Basically, the language is unclear as to what the change is, but the result is certainly a partaking of the body and blood of Christ, one that seems to be in some sense substantial, though not necessarily a substantial transformation of the elements. Needless to say, the opinion of the ECF's is far too vague to support transubstantiation, and probably not even substantiation.
Actually, i think that Cyril is one of the few that a Catholic could argue actually holds something like transubstantiation over consubstantiation. Later, in catechesis 22, he says "apparent wine is not wine, even though the taste would have it so."

It is true that much of the early church simply states that we partake of the body and blood of Christ, a line that would be acceptable, although understood differently, but Catholics, Luther, and Calvin. HOwever, that is why I have tried to give quotes that show that most thought of this substantially and second, give the theology behind many of them which illustrates that Christ's presence must be understood as substatial for them.
Quote:
Originally Posted by +Donny
From what little I could find on this guy, he actually seemed to turn out to be a heretic, I think involved in Nestorianism or something, but definitely Christological. Plus, I couldn't find his Homilies in my ECF index, nor even on google. This one doesn't count, so there.
It is true that this guy went a little wacko on certain things. However, that does not mean that when he attests to the liturgical tradition (which is inherently more conservative and resistent to change) that his opinion should be considered faulty. And I think he is very clearly on my side, so there!
Quote:
Originally Posted by +Donny
You have given me some great info and at least shown me that the ECF seemed to have some sort of view that was above that of Calvin's, but below that of the Roman Catholic church. It seems, I suppose, around the level of consubstantiation, though definitely a far different theory from that of Luther.
In the end, one of the problems in this discussion will be that I believe that since the HS is within the Church there can be authentic theological development in the Church after biblical times. This development cannot be contrary to the Bible but builds on, unfolds the Revelation therein. Thus, for me, and for Catholics, it is not a problem that transubstatiation cannot be shown throughout the Church Fathers (a few certainly when there). 'tran' vs. 'con' was not the question of the early church and they shouldn't be expected to have definitively weighed in on the issue. However, as you have noted, I think that as a whole, the early church was clearly 'substatial' in its eucharistic theology and simply did not consider the 'tran' vs. 'con' debate.


Oh, and my name is Todd
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Unread 12-29-2004, 08:29 AM   #25
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Against Calvin's Eucharist Theology

You mentioned that one of the Fathers i quoted ealier was Nestorian, splitting up the two natures of Christ. However, it seems as though that is what a sort of Christ's spiritual presence eucharistic theology does. We believe that Christ's divinity and resurrected body are hypostatically united. We also know that this body is very unlike ours (it goes through walls, was unrecognizable, etc.). Thus, in my mind, it seems almost Nestorian to say that Christ comes spiritually but not substantially; to say this is to divide up Christ and deny the reality of the hypostatic union.

I would also like to say that, despite what Katholish say in the RC forum earlier, transubstatiation is a bit flexible as a term, only in the sense that the Church acknowledges that in the end, Christ's presence is a mystery, and a term may come around which gives a better description. Thus, Trent says that the Real Presence is most aptly described as transubstantiation. I think that Zwingli, Luther, and Catholics are consistent with the incarnation with the way they describe the Eucharist but Zwingli is clearly going against the longstanding Tradition of the Church; I think Calvin was trying to hold a middle ground (spiritual presence w/o identification w/ the elements) which doesn't hold up with the incarnation.

Also, Donny, do you have any questions, comments about my paper?
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Unread 12-29-2004, 11:09 AM   #26
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The fact that he is combatting a group of 'Docetists' doesn't really weaken the claim he is making much. Docetists would have no problem affirming Calvins' or Zwingli's eucharistic theology, especially not Zwingli's since in neither one, including Calvin (see paper) is Christ's presence either substantial or actually united to the bread. Thus, I think that the claim that Ignatius is making should be understood as substantial.
Maybe Zwingli's, but not Calvin's. As I understand it, Calvin affirmed that we partake of the very flesh and blood of Christ. Just because we don't partake of the flesh and blood physically doesn't mean the flesh and blood which we partake of isn't physical. We partake of Christ's physical flesh and blood spiritually, unless I am missing something.

Furthermore, if the Docetists denied Christ's physical nature, than the Eucharist as a whole would make no sense. Why even symbolically partake of his flesh and blood?

Iranaeous
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I acknowledge that many of the Church Fathers had some odd ideas and some odd explanations, thus the reason why when one appeals to them one needs lots of examples. The line that I think clearly points to 'substantiation' is that "from these the substance of our flesh is increased and supported." Irenaeus is describing the common early church idea, quoted earlier in Gregory, that we must be saved body and soul (which is done definitely at the Resurrection). However, in a sense, our bodies become more liike our Resurrected bodies, more like Christ's through the Eucharist. Whether we agree with this line of thinking, they are trying to come up with an explanation for a ritual and teaching (substantial presence) which was present since the time of Christ.
I'm not sure if he is arguing the way you are saying he is. It seems more likely to me that he is arguing only that the Eucharist's elements are transformed like our bodies are transformed in the resurrection (an analogy, not a causal relationship). Furthermore, the quote about our bodies being "increased and supported" seems rather to refer merely to the wine and bread themselves and not to some sort of substantiation. I am not denying a transformation in his Eucharistic thinking, I am denying that it is necessarily substantial.

Tertullian
Quote:
Tertullian seems very odd since first, he is, and second, he is one of the few theologians in the early church that should not be described as Platonic. Look at the line "The flesh feeds on the body and blood of Christ". The is clearly Lutheran or Catholic; Calvin would say "our soul feeds on the body and blood of Christ through faith". Zwingli would even go that far.
I understand that and fully acknowledge that many of the quotes you provided are certainly beyond Calvin's view, though I deny that all of them necessary point to Lutheran or Catholic substantiation.

Clement of Alexandria
Quote:
You are right that he doesn't explicitely talk about the transformation of the elements, but I think that it is logical to deduce that from the statement given.
As for their backing, think of it this way:

You believe (I assume) that when we are in heaven are souls are spotless and incorruptible; similarly, after the resurrection, are bodies are as well. However, we also believe in Sactification here one earth, but we normally focus solely on the sanctification of the soul, which becomes more holy now but will only reach perfection after death in heaven. The early church saw the eucharist as the vehicle through which Christ transformed our bodies like He will do ultimately in the Resurrection.
Hmmm, yeah, I can see what you are saying, but you must also affirm that they saw two effects of the Eucharist, both body and soul, so that we not only fed carnally/physically on Christ, but also spiritually. So, it seems to be a combination of Calvinism and carnal feeding on Christ, not necessarily, though possibly including some form of substantiation.

Aphraahat
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Booyah! And I remind you just how much this figure represents, the entire theological and liturgical tradition of Syriac Christianity.
Do we really know enough about church history to conclude a claim like that? That seems pretty widesweeping.

Cyril of Jerusalem
Quote:
Actually, i think that Cyril is one of the few that a Catholic could argue actually holds something like transubstantiation over consubstantiation. Later, in catechesis 22, he says "apparent wine is not wine, even though the taste would have it so."
Yes, Cyril seems to come much closer than the rest.

Quote:
It is true that much of the early church simply states that we partake of the body and blood of Christ, a line that would be acceptable, although understood differently, but Catholics, Luther, and Calvin. HOwever, that is why I have tried to give quotes that show that most thought of this substantially and second, give the theology behind many of them which illustrates that Christ's presence must be understood as substatial for them.
I think you have shown a substantial partaking of Christ's flesh and blood, but not necessarily a substantial transformation of the elements. They at least affirm a substantial partaking of Christ through the elements, but I just don't see that we have to necessarily conclude a substantial partaking of Christ alongside the elements, or a transformation of the elements themselves. The arguments and theology behind the ECF Eucharistic doctrine doesn't necessarily lead to such a thing, I think.

Quote:
It is true that this guy went a little wacko on certain things. However, that does not mean that when he attests to the liturgical tradition (which is inherently more conservative and resistent to change) that his opinion should be considered faulty. And I think he is very clearly on my side, so there!
Well, I couldn't find him, so you don't win.

Quote:
In the end, one of the problems in this discussion will be that I believe that since the HS is within the Church there can be authentic theological development in the Church after biblical times. This development cannot be contrary to the Bible but builds on, unfolds the Revelation therein. Thus, for me, and for Catholics, it is not a problem that transubstatiation cannot be shown throughout the Church Fathers (a few certainly when there). 'tran' vs. 'con' was not the question of the early church and they shouldn't be expected to have definitively weighed in on the issue. However, as you have noted, I think that as a whole, the early church was clearly 'substatial' in its eucharistic theology and simply did not consider the 'tran' vs. 'con' debate.
Actually, I agree that there can be and is development over time in theology and don't necessarily require you to prove transubstantiation. I only require you to do so to support the claim that the ECF's support RC transubstantiation. They have been shown to be at least above Calvin, but necessarily to the level of Rome, so this proves that they are against Calvin to a degree. I just don't think it legitimate to appeal to them as if they necessarily agreed with you.

Quote:
Oh, and my name is Todd
Good, I will try to remember that.
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Unread 12-29-2004, 11:18 AM   #27
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You mentioned that one of the Fathers i quoted ealier was Nestorian, splitting up the two natures of Christ. However, it seems as though that is what a sort of Christ's spiritual presence eucharistic theology does. We believe that Christ's divinity and resurrected body are hypostatically united. We also know that this body is very unlike ours (it goes through walls, was unrecognizable, etc.). Thus, in my mind, it seems almost Nestorian to say that Christ comes spiritually but not substantially; to say this is to divide up Christ and deny the reality of the hypostatic union.
That's not what Calvin meant. He did not believe that only Christ's divine/spiritual nature is partaken of. Rather, we partake of Christ's body, but we do so spiritually (by the agency of the Holy Spirit). He used the analogy of the sun: we enjoy the affect of the sun while on earth, away from it. Likewise, we partake of Christ's body, though His body is in heaven. We are granted the benefits of His life-giving flesh by the agency of the Spirit, that, though we are not locally present with Him, we are spirituall present with Him, that we may partake of His body spiritually (not His spiritual body). The organ by which we eat is faith, not our mouth, and our spirit feeds, not our flesh. This is not to say that His body is any less His body, though.

Quote:
I would also like to say that, despite what Katholish say in the RC forum earlier, transubstatiation is a bit flexible as a term, only in the sense that the Church acknowledges that in the end, Christ's presence is a mystery, and a term may come around which gives a better description. Thus, Trent says that the Real Presence is most aptly described as transubstantiation. I think that Zwingli, Luther, and Catholics are consistent with the incarnation with the way they describe the Eucharist but Zwingli is clearly going against the longstanding Tradition of the Church; I think Calvin was trying to hold a middle ground (spiritual presence w/o identification w/ the elements) which doesn't hold up with the incarnation.

Also, Donny, do you have any questions, comments about my paper?
I still haven't read it. I'll try to find time tonight, but this stupid scholarship essay is eating away at me. Time to turn off the stupid im services and get some work done when I get home from work (odd way to say that). I can't wait until I get my laptop...
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Unread 01-02-2005, 04:49 PM   #28
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Quote:
Originally Posted by +Donny
That's not what Calvin meant. He did not believe that only Christ's divine/spiritual nature is partaken of. Rather, we partake of Christ's body, but we do so spiritually (by the agency of the Holy Spirit). He used the analogy of the sun: we enjoy the affect of the sun while on earth, away from it. Likewise, we partake of Christ's body, though His body is in heaven. We are granted the benefits of His life-giving flesh by the agency of the Spirit, that, though we are not locally present with Him, we are spirituall present with Him, that we may partake of His body spiritually (not His spiritual body). The organ by which we eat is faith, not our mouth, and our spirit feeds, not our flesh. This is not to say that His body is any less His body, though.
What does it mean to partake in X's body spiritually? Partaking in the benefits of X(suns rays) does not actually mean that we are partaking in the X (the sun).

Also, I agree with you that transubstatiation cannot be deduced from the early church. However, given the examples i have cited, it seems to me that both Luther's and Catholic's eucharistic doctrines are legitimate outgrowths of the the early Church (i believe that it has been shown that the general belief of early Xn's is 'substantiation') while Calvin and certiainly Zwingli are illegitimate regressions into doctrines which are indeed innovations and were not present before their times.
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(St. Augustine The Literal Meaning of Genesis I.19.39)

Note: (due to confusion) Augustine here is writing against those who interpret Genesis "literally" (i.e. 6 day creation)
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Unread 01-02-2005, 06:09 PM   #29
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Originally Posted by Todd
What does it mean to partake in X's body spiritually? Partaking in the benefits of X(suns rays) does not actually mean that we are partaking in the X (the sun).
These are quotes from Calvin found in Mathison's Given For You.

Quote:
As Eve was formed out of the substance of her husband, and thus was a part of himself; so, if we are the true members of Christ, we share his substance, and by this intercourse unite into one body... Paul says that we are members of his flesh and of his bones. Do we wonder then, that in the Lord's Supper he holds out his body to be enjoyed by us, and to nourish us unto eternal life?
Quote:
I do not restrict this union to the divine essence, but affirm that it belongs to the flesh and blood, inasmuch as it was not simply said, My Spirit, but, My flesh is meat indeed; nor was it simply said, My Divinity, but, My blood is drink indeed.
Moreover, I do not interpret this communion of flesh and blood as applying only to the common nature, in respect that Christ, by becoming man, made us sons of God with himself by virtue of fraternal fellowship; but I distinctly affirm, that our flesh which he assumed is vivifying by becoming the material of spiritual life to us. And I willingly embrace the saying of Augustine, As Eve was formed out of a rib of Adam, so the origin and beginning of life to us flowed from the side of Christ. And although I distinguish between the sign and the thing signified, I do not teach that there is only a bare and shadowy figure, but dinstinctly declare that the bread is a sure pledge of that communion with the flesh and blood of Christ which it figures.
Quote:
The bond of this connection is therefore the Spirit of Christ, with whom we are joined in unity, and is like a channel through which all that Christ himself is and has is conveyed to us.
I could get more, that I think that illustrates it strongly enough. I couldn't find more info on the sun analogy, so I suppose we can ignore that one.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Todd
Also, I agree with you that transubstatiation cannot be deduced from the early church. However, given the examples i have cited, it seems to me that both Luther's and Catholic's eucharistic doctrines are legitimate outgrowths of the the early Church (i believe that it has been shown that the general belief of early Xn's is 'substantiation') while Calvin and certiainly Zwingli are illegitimate regressions into doctrines which are indeed innovations and were not present before their times.
I do not believe "substantiation" is proven in regards to a local presence, at least in all the church fathers you sited. Some of them, yes, but not nearly all of them, so it cannot be said to be the opinion of the early church.

Here is what Mathison says regarding Calvin and a local presence:

Quote:
Calvin is convinced that the main problem with most explanations of Eucharist is that they assume that a local, corporeal presence is necessary in order for believers to truly partake of the flesh and blood of Christ. He believes that this assumption is false, and that it gave rise to theories such as transubstantiation and the ubiguity of Christ's body. He is convinced that many of these controversies could be avoided if this unnecessary assumption were rejected. Calvin is convinced that believers may truly partake of the body of Christ and that such partaking does not require the local, corporeal presence of Christ's body because the Holy Spirit is able to unite the believer with Christ regardless of the physical space between them.
Thus, the issue is not whether we partake of Christ, and not even whether we partake of Christ's physical flesh and blood, but rather how we partake of His physical body.
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Unread 01-03-2005, 02:15 PM   #30
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Quote:
Originally Posted by +Donny
I do not believe "substantiation" is proven in regards to a local presence, at least in all the church fathers you sited. Some of them, yes, but not nearly all of them, so it cannot be said to be the opinion of the early church.
Would you mind sharing some quotes from ECF's stating that some believed in something other than transubstantiation? I believe it really wasn't that big of a controversy to where that many things came out stating just how it worked. It just worked.
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