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One Flesh Union - Christ and the Church

De Maria's picture

What is the One Flesh Union concerning Christ and the Church?

I have posted a version of this question in the Biblical Studies because I believe it is a beautiful question to ponder. And another version in the interdenominational Discussions to see how we view this mystery as expressed in the Sacrament of Matrimony differently.

But I have really been waiting patiently and anxiously for quite a long time to post this particular question on this forum because in another discussion here, the Catholic view of the One Flesh Union between Christ and the Church was called blasphemous. Specifically this teaching from the Catechism.

795 Christ and his Church thus together make up the "whole Christ" (Christus totus). The Church is one with Christ. The saints are acutely aware of this unity:

Let us rejoice then and give thanks that we have become not only Christians, but Christ himself. Do you understand and grasp, brethren, God's grace toward us? Marvel and rejoice: we have become Christ. For if he is the head, we are the members; he and we together are the whole man. . . . The fullness of Christ then is the head and the members. But what does "head and members" mean? Christ and the Church.

Our redeemer has shown himself to be one person with the holy Church whom he has taken to himself.

Head and members form as it were one and the same mystical person.

A reply of St. Joan of Arc to her judges sums up the faith of the holy doctors and the good sense of the believer: "About Jesus Christ and the Church, I simply know they're just one thing, and we shouldn't complicate the matter."

Our understanding of the One Flesh Union between Christ and the Church is based upon this verse.
Ephesians 5:
30For we are members of his body, of his flesh, and of his bones.
31For this cause shall a man leave his father and mother, and shall be joined unto his wife, and they two shall be one flesh. 32This is a great mystery: but I speak concerning Christ and the church.

Now, it seems to me that our understanding lines up pretty well with Scripture.

And so, I posted this particular thread to see how your views contrast with the Catholic view of this greatest and most wonderful of mysteries.


De Maria

Noshic's picture


jwmcmac says: "There is not much 'outward' humiliation in conversing with oneself directly to GOD . . . as you imply . . . this type of confession is very easy to do, privately . . . and this does not address the Nature of man as a visible Creation.

But there is very much humiliation in saying one's sins 'out-loud' to a Priest.."

Noshi: It's easy to agree with that..Man can give himself way too much latitude in his private prayers and confessions, assuming forgiveness day after day for the same failures....Much more humiliating to stand up and actually confess one's specific failures to a priest or anyone else...And the one who seriously feels the need to do that is also likely to seriously feel the need for both forgiveness as well as reform.

It also doesn't logically follow that confessing one's sins outwardly prevents or replaces an inward confession to God. Why are they mutually exclusive? After all, a person who's trying to bypass God doesn't even need to confess his sins...for how will the priest know until he tells him? Most outward confessions of private sins, I'm sure, are made out of reverence for God, not for priests, for it's not the priests who are omnipresent.