We're making big changes. Please try out the beta site at beta.ccel.org and send us feedback. Thank you!

Discussions on Jesus (combining Was Jesus God & Jesus in the Bread)

Loutzenhiser's picture

Both these threads are covering about the same territory now and getting long again. Continue both threads here.

JeffLogan's picture

Eating His Flesh and Drinking HIs Blood

In the book of Psalms we are invited to taste and see that the Lord is good.

    O taste and see that the LORD is good: blessed is the man that trusteth in him. O fear the LORD, ye his saints: for there is no want to them that fear him. The young lions do lack, and suffer hunger: but they that seek the LORD shall not want any good thing.

    Psalms 34:8-22 (KJV)

In the book of Isaiah the prophets talks of a living faith of good works toward others which is rewarded with a promise of fat bones and waters that never fail.

    "Is not this the fast that I have chosen? to loose the bands of wickedness, to undo the heavy burdens, and to let the oppressed go free, and that ye break every yoke? Is it not to deal thy bread to the hungry, and that thou bring the poor that are cast out to thy house? when thou seest the naked, that thou cover him; and that thou hide not thyself from thine own flesh? Then shall thy light break forth as the morning, and thine health shall spring forth speedily: and thy righteousness shall go before thee; the glory of the Lord shall be thy rereward. . . .

    And the Lord shall guide thee continually, and satisfy thy soul in drought, and make fat thy bones: and thou shalt be like a watered garden, and like a spring of water, whose waters fail not."

    Isaiah 58:6-11

The invitation to taste and see that the Lord is good is an invitation to experience the Lord firsthand. Not only hear but do of the principles of his kingdom and you will see by tasting, by experiencing, that the ways of the Lord are indeed good and nourishing for the soul to make it joyful. Isaiah gives a practical example of how we may taste, that is experience, the Lord through good works. These foods of life will make the bones fat and provide a spring of living water that will never run dry.

Again, in Isaiah we find that the cost of this nourishment, this food for the soul, is free. There is no cost associated with it. The only condition is that we must 'buy' it from the Lord without price. It is a gift which cannot be earned but is freely given to those who come to 'buy...without price'. (One may safely assume that it must be a gift because it is obvious, given the nature of the meal, that no man could afford such heavenly food and drink.)

    Ho, every one that thirsteth, come ye to the waters, and he that hath no money; come ye, buy, and eat; yea, come, buy wine and milk without money and without price.

    Wherefore do ye spend money for that which is not bread? and your labour for that which satisfieth not? hearken diligently unto me, and eat ye that which is good, and let your soul delight itself in fatness.

    Isaiah 55:1-2 (KJV)

Jesus reiterated this promise when he spoke these words.

    Therefore take no thought, saying, What shall we eat? or, What shall we drink? or, Wherewithal shall we be clothed?
    ...for your heavenly Father knoweth that ye have need of all these things.

    But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.

    Matt 6:31-33 (KJV)

It is in the seeking after righteousness that we find our nourishment to fatten the bones and bring forth springs of living waters. We are to seek that as our primary source of nourishment. If we do this the physical nourishment will follow.

In the book of Jeremiah we read that it is the Lord which is our righteousness.

    Behold, the days come, saith the LORD, that I will perform that good thing which I have promised unto the house of Israel and to the house of Judah.

    In those days, and at that time, will I cause the Branch of righteousness to grow up unto David; and he shall execute judgment and righteousness in the land.

    In those days shall Judah be saved, and Jerusalem shall dwell safely: and this is the name wherewith she shall be called, The LORD our righteousness.
    Jer 33:14-16 (KJV)

To those gathered on the mount to hear Jesus' proclamation of his coming kingdom these words of promise were spoken.

    Blessed are they which do hunger and thirst after righteousness: for they shall be filled.
    Matt 5:6 (KJV)

It is Jesus which is our Righteousness. Through a living faith we may have a practical experience in the things of the Lord and our souls will be thoroughly fed and watered. Our cup will overflow and the blessings will be such that we cannot contain them.

    The Lord is my shepherd. I am never in need. He makes me lie down in green pastures. He leads me beside peaceful waters. He renews my soul. He guides me along the paths of righteousness for the sake of his name. Even though I walk through the dark valley of death, because you are with me, I fear no harm. Your rod and your staff give me courage. You prepare a banquet for me while my enemies watch. You anoint my head with oil. My cup overflows. Certainly, goodness and mercy will stay close to me all the days of my life, and I will remain in the Lord's house for days without end.
    Psalms 23:1-6 (GW)

With that context it should be easier for us to understand just exactly what Jesus is speaking about when in John 6:35 he says, ”I am the bread of life: he that cometh to me shall never hunger; and he that believeth on me shall never thirst.”

    Then Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Except ye eat the flesh of the Son of man, and drink his blood, ye have no life in you. Whoso eateth my flesh, and drinketh my blood, hath eternal life; and I will raise him up at the last day.
    John 6:53-56 (KJV)

The righteousness of Christ is our bread. We are to hear and do what he commands us to do of a willing heart that loves Jesus, who is our Righteousness. All who eat of this bread in this manner will have eternal life. For in Jesus is eternal life.

    For the life was manifested, and we have seen it, and bear witness, and shew unto you that eternal life, which was with the Father, and was manifested unto us...And this is the record, that God hath given to us eternal life, and this life is in his Son.”

    1 John 1

It is through this hearing and doing, this continual walking in the spirit of God, that we have fellowship with Jesus and the Father. By obedience to his commandments through a faith that works by love we attach ourselves to the One Source of life, the Living Vine.

    If a man love me, he will keep my words: and my Father will love him, and we will come unto him, and make our abode with him.
    John 14:23 (KJV)

There is no other way to abide with the Father and with Jesus than by participating in their life, their kingdom. We do not invite them to partake of our life, we willingly join them in their life. When Jesus says he will come and make his abode with us he is speaking of our opening our hearts to receive him. When we choose to follow Jesus, to do what is righteous in his sight, not from a need but from a desire, then Jesus abides with us and we abide in him.

Jesus says, “Abide in me.” “I am the vine, ye are the branches.” “As the Father hath loved me, so have I loved you: continue ye in my love.” Love is the fulfillment of the law so to abide in Christ means we are to fulfill, that is to keep, his commandments. That is how we abide in his love. All of God's commandments are love.

    If ye keep my commandments, ye shall abide in my love; even as I have kept my Father's commandments, and abide in his love.
    John 15:9-10 (KJV)

So then when Jesus states that we dwell in him through eating his flesh and drinking his blood he is speaking of tasting and drinking of his life. By faith in Christ's atoning sacrifice for us we are forgiven past sins and cleansed of our iniquity and thus made righteous. This is the living water that never runs dry. It causes the soul to flourish and spring forth with fruit. By a living faith—works of obedience to God and service to others--we taste that the way of the Lord is food indeed that fattens the bones.

So in John 6 we may understand that to eat of Christ's flesh is to taste experientially that the way of the Lord is fatness to the bones while evil brings leanness. It is not merely in the partaking of the Host that we gain fatness of bone, but it is through a continual fellowship, a continual abiding in Christ, a continual obedience to Jesus that we find fatness of bone representing a healthy life. And it is not merely the partaking of the wine that cleanses us from sin, but it is a faith in the atoning sacrifice of Jesus—that he will do what he has promised to do and forgive our sins and cleanse us from all unrighteousness—that quenches our thirst.

    For my flesh is meat indeed, and my blood is drink indeed. He that eateth my flesh, and drinketh my blood, dwelleth in me, and I in him.
    John 6:53-56 (KJV)

Those who “hunger and thirst after righteousness” will be satisfied only by eating and drinking of the righteousness of Christ. We have discovered that to eat of Christ's flesh means to experience his life firsthand by active participation in obedience to all of his commands. And that to drink of Christ's blood means to taste firsthand the cleansing power of his atonement for us on the cross. This includes a greater appreciation for the emblems of communion through a better discernment of the body of the Lord which was broken for our bread and his blood that was spilt for our drink to provide waters of life to our souls.

Fools find no pleasure in understanding but delight in airing their own opinions. -Proverbs 18:2 NIV