The translation of "pro multis" as "for many" vs. "for all"
I think this is easier if we just diagram the controversial part of the sentence.  “For all” modifies “my blood.”  That’s not in dispute.  So, then, the question: was Christ’s blood shed for all?

One obvious answer is YES—of course, Jesus shed His blood for all, so that all might be redeemed.  So if people want to avail themselves of His salvific sacrifice, then it’s theirs to have.  There are plenty of bible quotes on the subject, Selah.  The offer is open to everyone.  And if anyone wants it, then the sacrament they need to seek out is BAPTISM, so that they can be incorporated into His mystical body and have the promise of salvation.  But this discussion is about the sacrament of the Eucharist.  Can “for all” be applied to the Eucharist?

The answer to that question is NO.  The Eucharist is Christ’s gift to the believing Christian: “that we may be made partakers of Thy Divinity.”  Even if, by some incredible glorious miracle, it turned out that universal salvation was absolutely true—even if we were to grant Fr. Karl Rahner’s theory that everyone is an “anonymous Christian,” and that everyone gets baptized by desire in their final moment (even Saladin and Abe Foxman!), then there would still be saints in heaven who lived and died on the planet without having received the Eucharist.  So there’s just no way whatsoever that the sacramental Blood of Christ in the Eucharist can be said to have been shed for all.  And that’s important.

The Church’s official sacramental theology is that the form of a sacrament must “signify the grace which it effects.”  The graces of baptism and Eucharist are different: one effects redemption, and the other effects the partaking of Christ’s Divinity.  If “for all” is used for the Eucharistic sacrifice, then it changes the meaning of the words which modify the form and does not effect a valid consecration.  According to De Defectibus.

Sufficiency and efficacy—not the same thing!


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Re: The translation of "pro multis" as "for many" vs. "for all" - by Gilgamesh - 12-21-2010, 01:52 AM

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