Monday, June 6, 2011

Question #34

The NWT translates the Greek word "esti" as "is" in almost every instance in the New Testament (Mt 26:18, 38, Mk 14:44, Lk 22:38, etc). See Greek-English Interlinear. Why does the NWT translate the same Greek word as "means" in Mt 26:26-28, Mk 14:22-24, and Lk 22:19? Why the inconsistency in the translation of the word "esti"? If the NWT were consistent and translated the Greek word "esti" as "is" in these verses, what would these verses say? Why did so many of Jesus' disciples leave him when he told them they must eat his body in order to have eternal life? See Jn 6:25-69, Mt 26:26-28.

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A large number of Jesus' original followers were stumbled because they foolishly took Jesus' words literally. They were imagining Jesus was advocating some sort of cannibalism. However, Jesus went on to say to his disciples: “Does this stumble you? What, therefore, if you should behold the Son of man ascending to where he was before? It is the spirit that is life-giving; the flesh is of no use at all. The sayings that I have spoken to you are spirit and are life. But there are some of that do not believe.”

In that same 6th chapter of John Jesus had said that he was the manna from heaven, in reference to his having come down from heaven to give his flesh in behalf of the world. In explanation Jesus stated that his words are spirit and life. In other words, Jesus was not telling the Jews that had to literally eat his flesh. Jesus was speaking in spiritual terms. On the night of his arrest Jesus instituted the Lord’s Evening meal by passing the bread and wine to his apostles, telling them to eat and drink in his remembrance. The bread and wine represent Christ’s flesh and blood. 

The Catholic doctrine of transubstantiation is one of the most bizarre and ridiculous doctrines ever foisted on gullible people. Like the Jews who wrongly supposed Jesus was telling them they had to literally eat his flesh and drink his blood, Catholics believe that the flour and water wafer and grape juice miraculously transform into the flesh and blood of Christ in the gut of the eater. The fact that people believe such nonsense is an indication that there is no real understanding of spiritual things. 

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