26 While they were eating, Jesus took bread, and when he had given thanks, he broke it and gave it to his disciples, saying, “Take and eat; this is my body.”
27 Then he took a cup, and when he had given thanks, he gave it to them, saying, “Drink from it, all of you. 28 This is my blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many for the forgiveness of sins. 29 I tell you, I will not drink from this fruit of the vine from now on until that day when I drink it new with you in my Father’s kingdom.” Matthew 26:26
22 While they were eating, Jesus took bread, and when he had given thanks, he broke it and gave it to his disciples, saying, “Take it; this is my body.”
23 Then he took a cup, and when he had given thanks, he gave it to them, and they all drank from it.
24 “This is my blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many,” he said to them.
25 “Truly I tell you, I will not drink again from the fruit of the vine until that day when I drink it new in the kingdom of God.” Mark 14:22
The Roman Catholics state that the Eucharist is the natural body and blood of Christ Jesus verè et realiter. Protestants agree with the Catholics and state that it is the body of Christ verè et realiter, then add spiritually by grace and efficacy. ??? What ???
In the following passage Jesus commanded his believers to do a sacrament in rememberance of him:
19 And he took bread, gave thanks and broke it, and gave it to them, saying, “This is my body given for you; do this in remembrance of me.” Luke 22:19
20 In the same way, after the supper he took the cup, saying, “This cup is the new covenant in my blood, which is poured out for you. Luke 22:20
This ritual of making bread wafer and wine (consecrated by a priest of course) into the actual body of a god has gone on for hundreds and thousands of years before the Jesus appointed birthdate. In this manner, they ate their god. And the Egyptians, who practiced this exact "sacrament" to Osirus possibly as long ago as 3150 years before any A.D. date. The Worship of Osiris begins in Pre-Dynastic Period of Egypt. c. 3150 BCE - c. 30 BCE. The bread and wine was brought to the temple by the worshipers.
Cicero, the greatest orator of Rome, and one of the most illustrious of Rome's statesmen, born in the year 106 B. C., mentions it in his writings his wonderings at the strangeness of the bread/wine rite.
"How can a man be so stupid," says he, "as to imagine that which he eats to be a God?"
From the beginings of the mysteries among the Pagans, the Eucharistia is one of the oldest rites of antiquity.
The followers of the Grand Lama in Tibet and Tartary offer to their god a sacrament of bread and wine.
The first Christian missionary that went to tibet, P. Andrada La Crozius, wrote about his findings in Tibet;
"Their Grand Lama celebrates a species of sacrifice with bread and wine, in which, after taking a small quantity himself, he distributes the rest among the Lamas present at this ceremony."
In the Indian and the Parsee religions, the devotees drink the juice of the Soma, or Haoma plant. They consider it a god. Mr. Baring Gould wrote:
"Among the ancient Hindoos, Soma was a chief deity; he is called 'the Giver of Life and of health,' the 'Protector,' he who is 'the Guide to Immortality.' He became incarnate among men, was taken by them and slain, and brayed in a mortar. But he rose in flame to heaven, to be the 'Benefactor of the World,' and the 'Mediator between God and Man.' Through communion with him in his sacrifice, man, (who partook of this god), has an assurance of immortality, for by that sacrament he obtains union with his divinity."
Pythagoras, the renown Grecian philosopher, was born about the year 570 B. C. He performed this ceremony of the bread/wine sacrament he brought back from a visit to Egypt.
The "King of Righteousness," Melchizedek, "a priest of the Most High God," brought out BREAD and WINE as a sign or symbol of worship to experience God's presence.
Then Melchizedek king of Salem brought out bread and wine. He was priest of God Most High, Genesis 14:18
The Rev. Dr. Milner stated;
"It was in offering up a sacrifice of bread and wine, instead of slaughtered animals, that Melchizedek's sacrifice differed from the generality of those in the old law, and that he prefigured the sacrifice which Christ was to institute in the new law from the same elements. No other sense than this can be elicited from the Scripture as to this matter; and accordingly the holy fathers unanimously adhere to this meaning."
This is wishful thinking to justify their pagan beliefs. This bread and wine sacrament was offered to God and eaten before God by Jethro and the elders of Israel, [Exodus 18:12] and some of the mourning Israelites broke bread and drank "the cup of consolation," in remembrance of the departed, "to comfort them for the dead."
Persia—the religion of Mithra, the Mediator, the Redeemer and Saviour—that we find the sacrament of the Christians, and from which the Christians evidently borrowed from. Those who were initiated into the mysteries of Mithra, or became members, took the sacrament of bread and wine.
M. Renan, writing of Mithraicism, says:
"It had its mysterious meetings: its chapels, which bore a strong resemblance to little churches. It forged a very lasting bond of brotherhood between its initiates: it had a Eucharist, a Supper so like the Christian Mysteries, that good Justin Martyr, the Apologist, can find only one explanation of the apparent identity, namely, that Satan, in order to deceive the human race, determined to imitate the Christian ceremonies, and so stole them."
St. Justin, writes alluding to the bread wine ceremony:
"The apostles, in the commentaries written by themselves, which we call Gospels, have delivered down to us how that Jesus thus commanded them: He having taken bread, after he had given thanks, said, Do this in commemoration of me; this is my body. And having taken a cup, and returned thanks, he said: This is my blood, and delivered it to them alone. Which thing indeed the evil spirits have taught to be done out of mimicry in the Mysteries and Initiatory rites of Mithra. "For you either know, or can know, that bread and a cup of water (or wine) are given out, with certain incantations, in the consecration of the person who is being initiated in the Mysteries of Mithra."
The Eucharist of the Lord and Saviour, as the Magi called Mithra, the second person in their Trinity, or their Eucharistic sacrifice, was always made exactly and in every respect the same as that of the orthodox Christians.
The Persian Magi introduced the worship of Mithra into Rome. These mysteries were solemnized in a cave. In the process of initiation there, candidates were also administered the sacrament of bread and wine, and were marked on the forehead with the sign of the cross.
The ancient Greeks also had their "Mysteries," wherein they celebrated the sacrament of the Lord's Supper. The Rev. Robert Taylor, speaking of this, says:
"The Eleusinian Mysteries, or, Sacrament of the Lord's Supper, was the most august of all the Pagan ceremonies celebrated, more especially by the Athenians, every fifth year, in honor of Ceres, the goddess of corn, who, in allegorical language, had given us her flesh to eat; as Bacchus, the god of wine, in like sense, had given us his blood to drink. . . . "From these ceremonies is derived the very name attached to our Christian sacrament of the Lord's Supper,—'those holy Mysteries;'—and not one or two, but absolutely all and every one of the observances used in our Christian solemnity. Very many of our forms of expression in that solemnity are precisely the same as those that appertained to the Pagan rite."
Prodicus (a Greek sophist of the 5th century B. C.) says that, the ancients worshiped bread as Demeter (Ceres) and wine as Dionysos (Bacchus); therefore, when they ate the bread, and drank the wine, after it had been consecrated, they were doing as the Romanists claim to do at the present day, i. e., eating the flesh and drinking the blood of their god. Mosheim, the celebrated ecclesiastical historian, acknowledges that:
"The profound respect that was paid to the Greek and Roman Mysteries, and the extraordinary sanctity that was attributed to them, induced the Christians of the second century, to give their religion a mystic air, in order to put it upon an equal footing in point of dignity, with that of the Pagans. For this purpose they gave the name of Mysteries to the institutions of the Gospels, and decorated particularly the 'Holy Sacrament' with that title; they used the very terms employed in the Heathen Mysteries, and adopted some of the rites and ceremonies of which those renowned mysteries consisted. This imitation began in the eastern provinces; but, after the time of Adrian, who first introduced the mysteries among the Latins, it was followed by the Christians who dwelt in the western part of the empire. A great part, therefore, of the service of the Church in this—the second—century, had a certain air of the Heathen Mysteries, and resembled them considerably in many particulars."
These mysteries were, as we have said, also celebrated in honor of Bacchus as well as Ceres. A consecrated cup of wine was handed around after supper, called the "Cup of the Agathodaemon"—the Good Divinity. Throughout the whole ceremony, the name of the Lord was many times repeated, and his brightness or glory not only exhibited to the eye by the rays which surrounded his name (or his monogram, I. H. S.), but was made the peculiar theme or subject of their triumphant exultation.
The mystical wine and bread were used during the Mysteries of Adonis, the Lord and Saviour. In fact, the communion of bread and wine was used in the worship of nearly every important deity.
The rites of Bacchus were celebrated in the British Islands in heathen times, and so were those of Mithra, which were spread over Gaul and Great Britain. We therefore find that the ancient Druids offered the sacrament of bread and wine, during which ceremony they were dressed in white robes, just as the Egyptian priests of Isis were in the habit of dressing, and as the priests of many Christian sects dress at the present day.
Among some negro tribes in Africa there is a belief that "on eating and drinking consecrated food they eat and drink the god himself."
The ancient Mexicans celebrated the mysterious sacrament of the Eucharist, called the "most holy supper," during which they ate the flesh of their god. The bread used at their Eucharist was made of corn meal, which they mixed with blood, instead of wine. This was consecrated by the priest, and given to the people, who ate it with humility and penitence, as the flesh of their god. Lord Kingsborough, in his "Mexican Antiquities," speaks of the ancient Mexicans as performing this sacrament; when they made a cake, which they called Tzoalia. The high priest blessed it in his manner, after which he broke it into pieces, and put it into certain very clean vessels. He then took a thorn of maguery, which resembles a thick needle, with which he took up with the utmost reverence single morsels, which he put into the mouth of each individual, after the manner of a communion. The writer of the "Explanation of Plates of the Codex Vaticanus,"—which are copies of Mexican hieroglyphics—says:
"I am disposed to believe that these poor people have had the knowledge of our mode of communion, or of the annunciation of the gospel; or perhaps the devil, most envious of the honor of God, may have led them into this superstition, in order that by this ceremony he might be adored and served as Christ our Lord." The Rev. Father Acosta says: "That which is most admirable in the hatred and presumption of Satan is, that he hath not only counterfeited in idolatry and sacrifice, but also in certain ceremonies, our Sacraments, which Jesus Christ our Lord hath instituted and the holy Church doth use, having especially pretended to imitate in some sort the Sacrament of the Communion, which is the most high and divine of all others."
He then relates how the Mexicans and Peruvians, in certain ceremonies, ate the flesh of their god, and called certain morsels of paste, "the flesh and bones of Vitzilipuzlti."
"After putting themselves in order about these morsels and pieces of paste, they used certain ceremonies with singing, by means whereof they (the pieces of paste) were blessed and consecrated for the flesh and bones of this idol."
These facts show that the Eucharist is another piece of Paganism adopted by the Christians. The story of Jesus and his disciples being at supper, where the Master did break bread, may be true, but the statement that he said, "Do this in remembrance of me,"—"this is my body," and "this is my blood," was undoubtedly invented to give authority to the mystic ceremony, which had been borrowed from Paganism.
Why should they do this in remembrance of Jesus? Provided he took this supper with his disciples—which the John narrator denies [According to the "John" narrator, Jesus ate no Paschal meal, but was captured the evening before Passover]—he did not do anything on that occasion new or unusual among Jews. To pronounce the benediction, break the bread, and distribute pieces thereof to the persons at table, was, and is now, a common usage of the Hebrews. Jesus could not have commanded born Jews to do in remembrance of him what they already practiced, and what every religious Jew does to this day. The whole story is evidently a myth, as a perusal of it with the eye of a critic clearly demonstrates.
The Mark narrator informs us that Jesus sent two of his disciples to the city, and told them this:
13 So he sent two of his disciples, telling them, “Go into the city, and a man carrying a jar of water will meet you. Follow him. 14 Say to the owner of the house he enters, ‘The Teacher asks: Where is my guest room, where I may eat the Passover with my disciples?’ 15 He will show you a large room upstairs, furnished and ready. Make preparations for us there.”
16 The disciples left, went into the city and found things just as Jesus had told them. So they prepared the Passover. Mark 14:13-16
It is interesting to note that a man in Jerusalem should have had an unoccupied and properly furnished room just at that time, when two millions of pilgrims sojourned in and around the city. The man, it appears, was not distinguished either for wealth or piety, for his name is not mentioned; he was not present at the supper, and no further reference is made to him. It appears rather that the Mark narrator imagined an ordinary man who had a furnished room to let for such purposes, and would imply that Jesus knew it prophetically.
The Matthew narrator's account is free from these embellishments, and simply runs thus: Jesus said to some of his disciples—the number is not given —
18 He replied, “Go into the city to a certain man and tell him, ‘The Teacher says: My appointed time is near. I am going to celebrate the Passover with my disciples at your house.’” 19 So the disciples did as Jesus had directed them and prepared the Passover. Matthew 26:18-19
As early as the second century, however, the seeds were planted, when we find Ignatius, Justin Martyr, and Irenæus advancing the opinion, that the mere bread and wine became, in the Eucharist, something higher— something heavenly —without, however, ceasing to be bread and wine. After the third century the task of presenting the bread and wine came to be confined to the ministers or priests. As in Christ Jesus two distinct natures, the divine and the human, were wonderfully combined, so in the Eucharist there was a corresponding union of the earthly and the heavenly.
Transubstantiation is the invisible change of the bread and wine into the body and blood of Christ. The credulity of the age, with its love for the wonderful and magical, the interest of the priesthood to add lustre, in accordance with the heathens, to a rite which enhanced their own priestly office, resulted in the doctrine of Transubstantiation being declared an article of faith of the Christian Church. Luther maintained a corporeal, and Calvin a real presence of Christ in the Eucharist; and the opinion of Zuinglius, that it is no more than a spiritual communion, a simple memorial, has slowly prevailed in the reformed churches.
At the present day, the Greek and Roman Catholics alone hold to the original doctrine of the real presence. Of all the religious observances among heathens, Jews, or Turks, none has been the cause of more hatred, persecution, outrage, and bloodshed, than the Eucharist. Christians persecuted one another like relentless foes, and thousands of Jews were slaughtered on account of the Eucharist and the Host.