“For Christ did not enter a sanctuary made with human hands that was only a copy of the true one; he entered heaven itself, now to appear for us in God’s presence. Nor did he enter heaven to offer himself again and again, the way the high priest enters the Most Holy Place every year with blood that is not his own. Otherwise Christ would have had to suffer many times since the creation of the world. But he has appeared once for all at the culmination of the ages to do away with sin by the sacrifice of himself. Just as people are destined to die once, and after that to face judgment, so Christ was sacrificed once to take away the sins of many; and he will appear a second time, not to bear sin, but to bring salvation to those who are waiting for him.” (Hebrews 9:24-28)
An Exegetical Analysis Of Hebrews 9:24-28 And Roman Catholic Eucharist Theology
The sacrifice of the Mass is said to be a continuation of Jesus Christ’s work on the cross. In Roman Catholic theology, He is offered up as a sacrifice by priests throughout the world to make atonement for our sins. It is maintained that Christ’s sacrifice is perpetual as it exists beyond time. Roman Catholic Priest Bryan Babick says that, “The one Sacrifice of Christ is continually offered because its merits can continue to be experienced until He chooses to return in glory.”
The first problem that this text presents for Roman Catholic eucharistic theology is that it says Christ entered into a sanctuary not made with human hands. Thus, He cannot be present in His human nature in the golden tabernacles of Roman Catholic churches. Christ has ascended into heaven.
This passage speaks of Jesus Christ having completed His atonement sacrifice once in the last days. His sacrifice is not being performed again and again in the manner of the Old Testament priests who slaughtered animals. This context contains sharp contrasts.
This passage speaks of Christ returning physically for a second time to administer judgement on mankind and restoring a righteous order. It does not speak of Him coming down during this age at the command of an ordained priest to be consumed by parishioners.
The problem with Roman Catholic teaching is that Christ’s sacrifice is believed to be a one time event and occurring on a daily basis. The author of Hebrews does not present His atonement as occurring in that way, but Rome does. Christ’s sacrifice is not happening daily as did the sacrifices of the Old Covenant.
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