Old Law, New Covenant, and the Real Presence

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Pray4Life

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I was having a spirited discussion with my brother, who is a never-say-die Baptist, on the topic of the Holy Eucharist. He brought up some points which I felt at a loss to address, and was hoping someone out there might be of some assistance to me.

My brother says that the old law and the old covenant did not end, and the New Covenant in Christ begin, until Christ was crucified, and that therefore it was impossible for His disciples to be receiving His actual Body and Blood at the Last Supper/first Eucharist, as that Body and Blood had not yet been offered on the cross. They could not therefore partake of the new convenant in His blood until He had actually died, and if He was not truly present in the Eucharist then, it is not plausible that He would be now. He also mentioned that it didn’t make any sense for Him to offer Himself in the Eucharist while He was bodily present right there at the time- why not just do it after the Resurrection?

Please help me out here. The best I could come up with was that nothing is impossible with God. But I didn’t really have anything sufficient for his first argument as I am woefully out of my depth here. I am myself a convert to Catholicism. Thank you very much in advance.
 
Jesus Christ is God. Therefore He cuold be present anywhere and everywhere all at the same time.

Is he calling Jesus a liar?

This is my Body, this is my Blood?

He has to disprove the Bible texts.
 
I would recommend Scott Hahn’s book, The Lamb’s Supper.

The Eucharist has to be understood and appreciated in terms of the Passover meal. The Jews celebrated the Passover meal with an unblemished lamb, and the lamb had to be eaten. Jesus celebrated the Passover at the last supper, and Jesus is the unblemished lamb.

Also familiarize yourself with Jesus discourse on the Bread of Life in John chapter six; the gospel narratives of the Last Supper; and Paul’s statements on the Eucharist in 1 Corinthians chapters 10 and 11 combine to make an extraordinary case for catholic teaching. Also read Malachi 1:11 which is a prophecy of the catholic mass and the perfect offering (i.e. Jesus Christ crucified and represented to us in the Eucharist).

This is an outline that will help get you going and enable you to explain the Eucharist more fully.

John Martignoni has a good tape on the Eucharist. You can get it for $5.00 at his website: biblechristiansociety.com
 
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Pray4Life:
My brother says that the old law and the old covenant did not end, and the New Covenant in Christ begin, until Christ was crucified
Actually, the old covenant didn’t officially end with Christ’s death on the cross. It was still going on during the 1st century. In fact Judaizers were claiming salvation is based on circumcision, which is one of the jewish regulations (make sure to read Acts 15:1,5). Ultimately, the end of the old covenant came when Jesus said the temple would be destroyed in the lifetime of the apostles (see Matthew 24:2-3,24). And the temple’s destruction officially marked the end of biblical judaism.

That’s why Hebrews 8:13 mentions how the old covenant was aging and soon to disappear (to the mind of the author of Hebrews, the old covenant was yet to pass). Fortunately the old covenant order ceased at 70 AD with the fall of Jerusalem, not when Jesus said, “It is finished”.
and that therefore it was impossible for His disciples to be receiving His actual Body and Blood at the Last Supper/first Eucharist
I’d recommend reading 1 Cor 10:16, and John 6:34-66. Several times if necessary. They both make it clear that they were referring to a literal body and blood of Christ.

For a great Catholic understanding of the Eucharist in connection with the death of Christ on the cross, check out The Fourth Cup. It addresses ‘it is finished’ and it may answer your question.
They could not therefore partake of the new convenant in His blood until He had actually died
I prefer to listen to Jesus’s own words which He spoke at the Last Supper:

“This cup is the new covenant in my blood, which is poured out for you.” (Luke 22:20, 1 Cor 11:25)

Jesus is very clear that it’s his blood. And he said this before he died.
He also mentioned that it didn’t make any sense for Him to offer Himself in the Eucharist while He was bodily present right there at the time-
It makes perfect sense to believe He offered himself in the Eucharist. Jesus says it so clearly:

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.” (Matt 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. (Matt 26:27-28)
why not just do it after the Resurrection?
I think the order of all this has something to do with Jewish customs but I forgot about it. Anyway, the article I posted above probably has your answer.

I hope some of this was helpful

-Jason
 
Thank you for the replies. That article? transcript? by Scott Hahn was amazing, a huge help.

I had already read over the relevant Bible passages with my brother. I think where I was going wrong was in the placement of where Christ’s sacrifice actually started- at the Last Supper, or in the Garden? It makes sense it would begin in the Eucharist but for some weird reason I couldn’t think of a clear way of explaining that.

Thanks again & of course if anyone else has additional comments, I would love to hear them.
 
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Pray4Life:
My brother says that the old law and the old covenant did not end, and the New Covenant in Christ begin, until Christ was crucified, and that therefore it was impossible for His disciples to be receiving His actual Body and Blood at the Last Supper/first Eucharist, as that Body and Blood had not yet been offered on the cross. They could not therefore partake of the new convenant in His blood until He had actually died,
Of course it was possible, particularlly since Jesus said they were receiving his body and blood. The whole point of the Eucharist is that it transcends time. It makes is possible for us to be there at the events of salvation. The crucifixion is projected bacward in time to the last supper just as it is projected forward in time to us. For Jesus, it’s all simultaneous.
 
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