We are proud to share with you a phenomenal Bible study series at the St. Paul Center for Biblical Theology called “Parousia: The Bible and the Mass” hosted by Dr. Scott Hahn. Beautifully presented, impeccably edited, with masterful cinematography, we cannot recommend this study highly enough.
As a graduate student at Franciscan University of Steubenville, I had the great privilege of studying Theology under Dr. Hahn and his colleagues. What struck me was not only the depth of intellectual rigor but also a serious fidelity to Christ and His Church. Likewise, everything that I have seen, as a professional in Parish work, from the St. Paul Center is top notch, accessible, beautiful, and life-giving.
Seeing the Eucharist on Every Page of the Bible
Dr. Scott Hahn was a committed Christian and Presbyterian minister before becoming Catholic. He was a deep lover of the Bible. The two themes that drew Dr. Hahn to the fullness of the Catholic Faith have been instrumental in my own formation, through his work: 1) covenant and 2) the Eucharist as the key to the Bible.
It is simple to see a series like “Parousia: The Bible and the Mass” and think that we are just going to see a few Biblical texts applied to the Mass. However, the introduction video shows clearly that this theme is not just a few key moments in salvation history. The Eucharist is the key to interpreting the entire Bible, from beginning to end.
In Creation, the Law and the Prophets, and the New Testament, we see the Eucharist all along the way whether in foreshadowing or in stark clarity. All of this is centered in our Lord Jesus Christ.
Take and Eat: The Bible and the Mass
Tradition and Scripture
Everything that God wished to reveal of Himself to man is made present in the Person of Jesus Christ. All that Jesus Christ revealed and handed on to the Apostles in word and deed is contained in what we called Sacred Tradition. At the heart of Sacred Tradition is the Sacred Scripture (what we colloquially call “the Bible”). The Church says that Scripture is the driving force of doctrine. And, of course, the Church is the Mystical Body of Christ founded upon the Apostles and it is by His teaching authority that we receive the authentic interpretation of both Scripture and Tradition.
With this three-legged stool of Scripture, Tradition, and Magisterium (teaching authority), we have the firm foundation of Faith. This interrelationship of Scripture and Tradition shows us the story of salvation, with God as the Author.
The Sacred Scriptures, both the Old and New Testaments, are inspired and God-breathed. They have God as their author, and they give us His final Word. The Bible was borne of the Catholic Church and curated by Her over the centuries.
A Living Faith
This holy Deposit of Faith is not a dead letter but is alive! Before all else, the Faith comes alive in the celebration of the Sacraments, especially the Holy Eucharist. At the Holy Mass, Heaven and Earth meet and we are taking part in the Heavenly Liturgy! Through the Sacraments, beginning with Baptism, we enter an unbreakable covenant relationship with God. This is ordered towards the Holy Eucharist where we get to receive Jesus Christ in His Body, Blood, Soul, and Divinity.
In the Mass, we are most clearly the living Church. The gathered Members of the Body of Christ, renew their covenant relationship with God. The Mass is, therefore, the context of the New Covenant which is made in the Blood of Christ, the Eucharist. What more appropriate context could there be for Sacred Scripture!
Eucharist and Covenant, Scripture and Liturgy
The Eucharist is on every page of the Bible because covenant is on every page of the Bible. The Eucharist is the flesh and blood of the God-man Jesus Christ. He is our great Mediator who reconciles us to God. He is our Savior. As the Third Eucharistic Prayer states: “…by the power and working of the Holy Spirit, you give life to all things and make them holy, and you never cease to gather a people to yourself.” God draws us into His holy Family, the Church.
The grace that we receive in the Holy Mass transforms us. Grace is a free gift from God, but it must be received. If we know what is being given, then we can more freely receive. This is where the resources from the St. Paul Center can be incredibly practical to our spiritual life.
By opening our minds and hearts to what Scripture shows us, we can enter more deeply into the Liturgy. And by living more fully the Liturgy, our eyes will be opened to the richness of the Scriptures. Scripture points us to the Mass and the Mass brings Scripture to life. As the Benedictine Jeremy Driscoll says, “Scripture is the announcement of the Word of God; liturgy is its actualization.”
One with God
All God has revealed draws us to communion. God wants us to be one with Him. In Baptism, we enter the doorway of grace in the Sacraments. Our love of Scripture must abound and our full, conscious, and actual participation in the Liturgy must increase.
Resources like “Parousia: The Bible and the Mass” help us unpack this great mystery. Check it out today and delve deeper into the 10 Lessons which will show the compelling truth of why the liturgy is a major theme that runs through the entire Bible, from Genesis to the Book of Revelation.