Article by Alonzo T Jones
The Real Presence
Is the Real Presence in you or in the Eucharist?
The Christian doctrine of the real presence is “Christ in you.”
The Catholic theory of the real presence is “Christ in the eucharist.”
The Christian doctrine of the real presence is Christ in the believer by the creative power and overshadowing of the Spirit of God.
The Catholic theory of the real presence is Christ in the eucharist by the word of the priest.
In the Christian doctrine of the real presence there is an inward change or conversion of the soul of the believer himself by the power of the Holy Spirit, by which he is made a “new creature”.
In the Catholic theory of the real presence there is what is called an “inward change or conversion” of the bread and wine, or the wafer of the communion into the very flesh and blood of Jesus Christ by the word and at the will of the priest.
Nor is any of this mere captious criticism or prejudiced statement. It is all the straight truth. And that all may see that it is so, we herewith give the authoritative proof. First, as to the real presence of Christ being in the eucharist. Here is the statement:
“Among the various dogmas of the Christian church there is none which rests on stronger scriptural authority than the doctrine of the real presence of Jesus Christ in the holy eucharist. The fathers of the church, without an exception, re-echo the language of the apostle to the Gentiles, by proclaiming the real presence of our Lord in the eucharist….
I have counted the names of sixty-three fathers and eminent ecclesiastical writers flourishing between the first and the sixth century, all of whom proclaim the real presence -- some by explaining the mystery, others by thanking God for this inestimable gift, and others by exhorting the faithful to its worthy reception.” Faith of Our Fathers by Cardinal Gibbons.
And that it is in the eucharist instead of ‘in you’ is shown by the following words:
“Every one knows that example loses much of its efficacy in passing through the medium of history, and that virtues perceived at a distance of eighteen centuries are not sufficiently eloquent to move our hearts. It was then very necessary that the divine model of the elect should dwell in the midst of us full of grace and truth, and that he should offer to each one the living picture of the same virtues which charmed the witnesses of his mortal life and attached to him so powerfully the hearts of his disciples. This need Jesus Christ satisfies in his eucharistic life. Could Jesus Christ manifest more strikingly his unspeakable tenderness for sinners, and his ardent zeal for their salvation, than he does in the adorable sacrament in which he condemns himself to remain on the earth so long as there is one soul to save?” Religion in Society by Abbe Martinet.
And that it is at the word and will of the priest that this is all done, is shown plainly enough and strongly enough to satisfy anybody, in the following words:
“To obtain from us this abnegation of self, it was not enough that the Son of God obeyed Mary and Joseph for thirty years; made himself, during his public life, the servant of all; and delivered himself, without resistance, to his executioners. For eighteen hundred years that he has reigned at the right hand of the Father, he never has ceased to give to men the example of the most universal and humiliating obedience. Every day multitudes of priests, be they fervent, lukewarm, or vicious – it is the same – summon him where it pleases them, give him to whom they will, confine him under lock and key, and dispose of him at their will.” Ibid.
And that by the words or ceremony of consecration pronounced by the priest there is what is called an “inward change or conversion” of the bread and wine, or the wafter, into the very flesh and blood of Christ, is shown in these words:
“The holy eucharist is the true body and blood of Jesus Christ under the outward appearances of bread and wine…. This most blessed sacrament contains truly, really, and substantially, tho not perceptibly to our senses, nor with their natural accidents…. The body and blood of our Lord Jesus Christ, together with his soul and divinity, which can never be separated from his body and blood…
The Catholic Church teaches that, before consecration, that which on the altar appears to be bread and wine, is simply bread and wine; and that after the consecration of that bread and wine, what appears to be bread and wine is no longer bread and wine, but the body and blood of Jesus Christ. Something remains, namely, the outward qualities or species of bread and wine; and something is changed, namely, the inward, invisible substance of that bread and wine, into the body and blood of Christ; this inward change or conversion is what is called transubstantiation.” Ibid.
The Christian truth of the real presence of Christ converts the soul of the believer; the papal dogma pretends to convert the bread and wine. The Christian truth of the real presence of Christ believed, makes man subject to God in everything; the papal dogma makes God subject to man in everything.
The preaching of the Christian truth of the real presence of Christ in the believer, is the revelation of the mystery of God; the preaching of the papal dogma of the real presence is the proclamation of the mystery of iniquity. Signs of the Times. A.T. Jones. May 4. 1897.