Bible Study: The Bible and the Mass (Lesson 1, Part 2)
This is Part 2 to the Bible study we are doing from St. Paul Center for Biblical Theology. The first part can be found here. Today, we continue with Lesson 1: A Biblical Introduction to the Mass. The lesson explains why the worship of the Catholic Mass is biblical worship.
In God’s plan of salvation, the Bible and the Mass are given for our salvation – to enable us to penetrate the mystery of God’s plan, and to unite our lives to His.
Scripture, Paul said, is “inspired by God” and given to us “for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus” (see 2 Timothy 3:15-16; John 20:31).
The salvation and new life that Scripture proclaims, is “actualized” – made real in our lives – in the Mass.
As Jesus said: “Unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink His blood, you do not have life within you. Whoever eats My flesh and drinks My blood has eternal life, and I will raise him on the last day” (see John 6:53-54).
That’s why the worship of the Mass is biblical worship. The Bible gives the Mass its “efficacy” – its power to deliver what it promises, its power to bring us into communion with the true and living presence of Jesus.
Our worship can be life-transforming because the biblical Word we hear is “not a human word but . . . truly is the Word of God” (see 1 Thessalonians 2:13).
Ordinary human language, no matter how beautiful or persuasive, could never communicate God’s grace. It can’t make us holy or bring us to “share in the divine nature” (see 2 Peter 1:4).
Only the sacred speech of God can perform the divine action of transforming bread and wine into the Body and Blood of our Lord. Only the sacred speech of God can bring us into communion with the living God.
In God’s plan of salvation, the Bible leads us to the Liturgy. In the Liturgy, the written text of sacred Scripture becomes the living Word.
The Bible’s meaning and purpose is fulfilled in the Mass – the words of Scripture become “spirit and life . . . the words of eternal life” (see John 6:63,68).
I just love the explanation provided above. This is why the Catholic Mass is so special — it is the only Christian service that actually gives you the Body and Blood of Jesus Christ. The Word of God is a Person, and in the Mass, we literally consume the Word Made Flesh. We share in the Divine Nature because we take Jesus into our own bodies, where He is integrated into our flesh and soul. Dear Lord, I love you! Help me grow in fervor for Your Body & Blood!