The Instigator
RoyalSon
Con (against)
The Contender
David_Debates
Pro (for)

Transubstantiation

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Time Remaining
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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 11/28/2016 Category: Religion
Updated: 1 week ago Status: Debating Period
Viewed: 185 times Debate No: 97406
Debate Rounds (5)
Comments (7)
Votes (0)

 

RoyalSon

Con

I will argue that the Catholic Doctrine of transubstantiation is not a true doctrine.

First round is for acceptance of the debate only.
David_Debates

Pro

I gladly accept this challenge, provided I am able to define, seeing that I am Pro.

1) Transubstantiation: the conversion of the substance of the Eucharistic elements into the body and blood of Christ at consecration, only the appearances of bread and wine still remaining.

I also assume we are accepting the Bible, in its entirety, as a credible and valid source.

Best of luck to my opponent.
Debate Round No. 1
RoyalSon

Con

I.Transubstantiation cannot be demonstrated to be true rationally.

A.Transubstantiation is built upon the foundation of Substance Theory, a platonic concept that everything exists in a dichotomy of accidents and substance. Accidents refer to what appears to be so. Substance refers to what something actually is.

B.Substance theory undermines epistemological certainty and thus puts the Catholic in a dilemma regarding interpretation.
1.A Catholic cannot know if the Scripture they read actually matches in substance with what they read or hear (accidents).
2.A Catholic cannot know if Church Tradition matches in substance what they read or hear (accidents).
3.A Catholic cannot know if patristic writings, papal bulls, or ecumenical decrees match in substance with what they read or hear (accidents).

C.My opponent cannot therefore appeal to verses in the bible, or quotations from the church fathers, ecumenical councils, papal decrees or other ecclesiastical literature which can only be shown via accidents.

D.The only way for my opponent to be able to provide substantial evidence in the debate, is to abandon the Catholic presupposition of substance theory, which would in turn render transubstantiation an invalid doctrine.

E.Catholic doctrine teaches that the accidents remain as bread and wine, yet there is no verse in the gospels that teach that the appearance was different to the substance after the words of consecration.

F. Transubstantiation violates the law of identity.
1. As the Catholic Catechism states - the sacrifice is of unbloody blood.
2. Since the term bloody derives from the substance in question, namely blood - the attribute would denote a self-contradictory term.
3. Bloodiness cannot be defined irrespectively of the substance of blood.

G. The doctrine presupposes the idea that either (a) the accident remaining does not attach itself to the new substance or (b) that it does.
1. If the accident attaches itself to the substance, then the blood is physical as the attribute of physicality is attached to the substance. Since it is physical it cannot be said to be non-physical.
2. If the accident does not attach itself to the substance, then there is (i) A substance without an accident and (ii) An accident without a substance. That would violate the necessary substance/accidents dichotomy presupposed in substance theory which serves as the foundation of transubstantiation, thus proving it to be invalid.
3. Under both 1 and 2, the sacrifice at the mass cannot be said to be a re-presentation of the same sacrifice at calvary, since 1 would be with a physical blood that is not bloody and 2 would be an impossibility.

II.Transubstantiation cannot be demonstrated to be true scripturally.

A.It is not taught in the Gospels.
1.In Matthew 26:29 the cup is referred to as "this fruit of the vine" after the words of consecration.
2.If the Lord"s Supper is a re-presentation of the sacrifice, then there are two Christs. The Christ who is consecrating, and the Christ that is being offered up.
3.Just two verses later, a metaphorical device is used as an interpretation of prophecy, namely that the believers will be scattered as "Sheep of the flock"
4.Jesus refers to the death metaphorically as a cup a further 8 verses later.
5.John 6 is not referring to transubstantiation.

B.It is not taught in the Acts of the Apostles
1.When speaking of the Church"s breaking bread and eating, flesh is not mentioned even once.
2.When speaking of the drinking of blood it always spoken of as a forbiddance. Acts 15:20, 15:29, 21:25.

C.It is not taught in the Epistles
1.1 Corinthians 11:27 says that the believers are eating bread.
2.1 Corinthians 10:16-17 demonstrate that the believers share one loaf, proving that it has not transubstantiated to be actual flesh.

III."When my opponent attempts to prepare a rebuttal to my points, it will be by assuming that what is heard matches the substance of my arguments. But how can it be guaranteed that is the case, anymore than bread could be flesh or wine could be blood?"
David_Debates

Pro

First off, I'll present my argument for transubstantiation in this round. Afterwards, I'll rebut my opponent's arguments in Round 3.

1) The Bible clearly states that Transubstantiation is true.

- Paul's Eucharistic teachings in 1 Corithians clearly state the peramiters of transubstantiation.
"For this is what I received from the Lord and in turn passed on to you: That on the same night as he was betrayed, the Lord Jesus took some bread, and thanked God for it, and broke it, and he said, 'This is my body which is for you; do this as a memorial of me.' In the same way he took the cup after supper and said, 'This cup is a new covenant in my blood. Whenever you drink it, do this as a memorial of me.' Until the Lord comes, therefore, every time you eat this bread and drink this cup, you are proclaiming his death. And so anyone who eats the bread or drinks the cup of the Lord unworthily will be behaving unworthily toward the body and blood of the Lord. Everyone is to recollect himself before eating this bread and drinking this cup, because a person who eats and drinks without recognizing the body is eating and drinking his own condemnation" (1 Cor. 11:23-29).

This leaves us without doubt that the substance of the bread and wine has changed, seen when Paul states that a person who "eats and drinks without recongnizing the body is eating and drinking his own condemnation."

In the previous chapter of Corithians, Paul also tells us of what the bread and wine become.
"The blessing-cup that we bless is a communion with the blood of Christ, and the bread that we break is communion with the body of Christ" (1 Cor. 11:16).

The only possible meaning is that the bread and wine at the consecration become Christ's actual body and blood. In fact Christ was not merely saying that the bread was his body; he was decreeing that it should be so and that it is so.


- Jesus himself tells us in the Gospels of communion in the Last Supper.
"And as they did eat, Jesus took bread, and blessed, and brake it, and gave to them, and said, Take, eat: this is my body. And he took the cup, and when he had given thanks, he gave it to them: and they all drank of it. And he said unto them, This is my blood of the new testament, which is shed for many" (Mark 14:22-24).

"And as they were eating, Jesus took bread, and blessed it, and brake it, and gave it to the disciples, and said, Take, eat; this is my body. And he took the cup, and gave thanks, and gave it to them, saying, Drink ye all of it; For this is my blood of the new testament, which is shed for many for the remission of sins" (Matt. 26:26-28).

Jesus is very clear when he states that the bread is his body, and the wine is his blood. This is not a figure of speech, analogy, etc., instead, it is instruction to his disiples.

2) Transubstanisation makes logical sense.

My opponent has not told me whether or not he accepts the Bible, in its entirety, to be true. However, I assume he stipulates to this, as he has used Bible verses in an attempt to prove his contentions, showing that he is willing to use it as a source. With this in mind, I'll present a logical argument for the doctrine of transubstanisation.

a) The Bible is true (stipulated by Con).

b) The doctrine of transubstanisation is included in the Bible (Argument 1).

c) Therefore, the doctrine of transubstanisation is true.

This is an AAA-1 logical sylogysm. Provided I am able to prove my two premises (a and b), the conclusion must be accepted as true, and you must vote Pro.

Sorry if my argument is shorter than normal, I have been told by Con to keep it short "as to not bore the readers," so I will conclude here. Rebutals to Con's R2 arguments will be made next round.
Debate Round No. 2
RoyalSon

Con

I would like to thank my opponent Pro, for his opening statement. I appreciate the time taken to give an overview of your position regarding the doctrine of Transubstantiation.

Before I press forward with my rebuttal, I wish to address a misunderstanding on my opponent’s part. Pro, you stated the following, “Sorry if my argument is shorter than normal, I have been told by Con to keep it short "as to not bore the readers," so I will conclude here.” I wish to make it very clear that I did not explicitly or implicitly state that Pro needs to keep it short so as not to bore the readers. I would invite Pro to quote my words that gave such an impression. I do not believe they are to be found within my opening statement or invitation to debate. However, as an act of goodwill, I am happy to forfeit a round if Pro desires, so as to give him a chance to give a fuller opening statement as well as rebuttal. It is not my desire at all to make Pro feel uncomfortable. I encourage as much as possible for Pro to use the maximum allowed characters, as well the free round if he so desires. Pro, please do indicate whether or not you would like to have the free round at my willing expense.

What the readers will notice when reading through my opening statement, is that I highlighted the limitations of my opponent’s position on transubstantiation. Namely, that holding transubstantiation to be true presupposes a necessary dichotomy of accidents and substance. Since the theory demonstrates that the accidents of a thing (e.g. appearance, smell, taste, etc does not depend upon the substance and can be different from it, just as wine is different from blood, so a page of scripture could be totally different in substance from what can be seen with the eye. The same would apply to documents from tradition, including papal bulls, encyclicals, papal decrees, etc. My opponent, in keeping with substance theory would not be in a position to mount a case from texts whose substance could be completely different. With that in mind, it should be clear to my opponent and our fellow readers, that I was not asking Pro to keep his presentation brief, but simply consistent to the presuppositions which he operates under.

Having clarified the issue of brevity vs consistency, I would now like to briefly outline my own presuppositions for the benefit of my opponent, who can in turn nuance his responses according to my worldview. I am a non-denominational Christian who believes in the Divine inspiration and inerrancy of the Bible. I believe that Jesus Christ is the second person of the Divine Trinity, God manifested in the flesh who came to the earth as a man, lived a human life and suffered upon the cross for the forgiveness of our sins and our redemption, and rose from the dead on the third day. I believe that the bible is the sole infallible rule of faith, and that apart from Christ, no man shall be saved.

With the above-mentioned points as a preface of sorts, I now turn my attention to the points raised in my opponent’s Opening Statement. I pray that the Lord grants me to be accurate in my representation of materials covered and respectful in my conduct as 1 Peter 3:15 commands those who seek to give an answer for the faith.

PRO SAID: “1) The Bible clearly states that Transubstantiation is true.”

MY RESPONSE: As I mentioned in my opening statement, at best, my opponent can only appeal to the accidents of scripture, and have no more certainty of the substance of scripture, than one could have of something being wine or blood simply by looking at it. Therefore, while both my opponent and I believe the bible to be true, it is the non-Catholic position that is consistent with an approach to appeal to what is written, since no distinction or separation of accidents and substance is presupposed. For the sake of the readers who would like to see some interaction with the materials raised by my opponent, I will entertain such appeals, but nevertheless call my opponent to consistency with substance theory that he holds to.

PRO CONTINUED: “For that to be the case, it will be necessary to see - Paul's Eucharistic teachings in 1 Corithians clearly state the peramiters of transubstantiation.”
And then proceeded to quote from 1 Corinthians 11:23-29

MY RESPONSE: Firstly, the parameters of transubstantiation are not specified in this passage of scripture. There is no reference to accidents/appearance vs substance.

Secondly, since transubstantiation holds to the termination of bread and wine’s existence following the words of consecration, there would be no “bread” to eat, only flesh, yet the passage in 1 Corinthians 11:23-29 speaks of eating bread.

Thirdly, if we ignore point 1 and 2, there is yet another problem – If Christ is being offered via transubstantiation, this Christ is being offered by another Christ, namely the one speaking with His disciples. That means there are two Christs. The problem is then compounded when the wine is offered, because you then have a third Christ, namely the Christ under the wine-like accidents.

PRO SAID: ‘This leaves us without doubt that the substance of the bread and wine has changed, seen when Paul states that a person who "eats and drinks without recongnizing the body is eating and drinking his own condemnation." ‘

MY RESPONSE: Interestingly, the verb attached to “body” is recognizing, while the verb attached to bread is eating. If my opponent truly wishes to be literal about this, he will concede that transubstantiation is not spoken of here, since transubstantiation teaches that there is no more bread left to eat.

PRO SAID: ‘In the previous chapter of Corithians, Paul also tells us of what the bread and wine become." And quotes 1 Corinthians 11:16.

MY RESPONSE: I believe my opponent, Pro intended to say 1 Corinthians 10:16. Under the transubstantiation position, there is no fellowship. Because the bread that is broken is NOT the fellowship or communion. The bread is nothing because it no longer exists.

PRO SAID: ‘The only possible meaning is that the bread and wine at the consecration become Christ's actual body and blood. In fact Christ was not merely saying that the bread was his body; he was decreeing that it should be so and that it is so. ‘

MY RESPONSE: That negates the function and use of metaphorical devices. For example, for someone to say: The boy was a ravenous wolf at the picnic does not mean that he was a literal wolf, but uses the term for effect, just as is the case with the Lord referring to the emblems metaphorically by saying this {bread} is my body]. This is strengthened by the fact that the sentence becomes grammatically impossible where the subject being bread at the time of speaking before completion is said to be bread and the body after the words of consecration are completed. In other words This (bread) is my body (flesh). Literally it would mean then that one substance is the same as another substance. That bread is equal to flesh.

PRO SAID: “Jesus himself tells us in the Gospels of communion in the Last Supper.”
And then quotes Mark 14:22-24.

MY RESPONSE: Again what is “this” referring to? It can’t be flesh because the consecration hadn’t been completed yet. It must be bread, because change had yet occurred. Yet what happens when the bread is destroyed? If would render the flesh as being equal to “nothing” since up to the completion of the words of consecration the bread is destroyed, i.e. the bread (which is nothing) is my body.

PRO QUOTED: Matthew 26:26-28.

MY RESPONSE: Which blood was shed? Jesus’ pre-resurrection carnal blood or post-resurrection glorified blood? The former cannot be present in multiple places and times. The latter was not shed on the cross for the forgiveness of sins.

Pro then gave a syllogism, of which I only accept the first premise. The second premise has not been established and the conclusion therefore does not follow.

I thank Pro and look forward to his response.

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Debate Round No. 3
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Debate Round No. 4
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Debate Round No. 5
7 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 7 records.
Posted by David_Debates 4 days ago
David_Debates
Thank you for the reinstatement. I apologize for the forfeit.
Posted by RoyalSon 1 week ago
RoyalSon
Hello David. At your request, I have reinstated the debate at http://www.debate.org...

Please copy/paste your opening statement from here, after which I will copy/paste my rebuttal. You can then proceed with your rebuttal. I have increased the time and word limit so that you will find it easier to meet the deadline and express yourself more fully. If you wish to post a fuller opening statement, Please do so during your rebuttal round and I will forfeit that round to allow you to then also post your rebuttal.

Many thanks and God bless.
Posted by RoyalSon 1 week ago
RoyalSon
Hello David. I have made a request for your time to be reset on the third round.
Posted by David_Debates 1 week ago
David_Debates
Yeah, everything is ok. I was just unable to finish my argument and post it. Do you mind reinstating? We can just copy paste this and continue the debate. Would that be alright with you?
Posted by RoyalSon 1 week ago
RoyalSon
Whatever you have prepared, it's best to submit it before your time runs out. Even if it's incomplete, it's better than not submitting anything.
Posted by RoyalSon 1 week ago
RoyalSon
David_Debates - Is everything okay? You haven't posted your rebuttal yet at there are less than 10 minutes left on the clock.
Posted by one2one 1 week ago
one2one
tempting...
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