What does it mean to eat Christ’s body & drink His blood?

Often referred as communion which is done in remembrance of what Christ had done for us, eating Christ’s body & drinking His blood as Jesus Christ said, is a teaching even Jesus’s disciples found hard.

Matt 26:26-28 And as they were eating, Jesus took bread, blessed and broke it, and gave it to the disciples and said, “Take, eat; this is My body.” Then He took the cup, and gave thanks, and gave it to them, saying, “Drink from it, all of you. For this is My blood of the new covenant, which is shed for many for the remission of sins.

What does it mean?

John 6:53-57 Then Jesus said to them, “Most assuredly, I say to you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink His blood, you have no life in you. Whoever eats My flesh and drinks My blood has eternal life, and I will raise him up at the last day. For My flesh is food indeed, and My blood is drink indeed. He who eats My flesh and drinks My blood abides in Me, and I in him. As the living Father sent Me, and I live because of the Father, so he who feeds on Me will live because of Me.

When Jesus spoke these words, the disciples said, “This is a hard saying; who can understand it?” and Jesus reply was “Does this offend you?”

  • You don’t eat unless you are hungry or drink unless we are thirsty
  • The bread and the fruit of vine are symbols.
  • Eating His body and drinking His blood are not literal but spiritual.
  • A spiritual food and and drink.
Jesus Himself in His teachings gives an explanation for what it could mean.

John 6:35 And Jesus said to them, “I am the bread of life. He who comes to Me shall never hunger, and he who believes in Me shall never thirst.

Hence, eating his Body represents “coming to Him” and drinking His blood represents “believing on Him”, so that we shall never hunger and never thirst. This is why Christ said: Whoso eateth my flesh, and drinketh my blood, hath eternal life

John 3:15 “that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have eternal life.

John 6:37 “All that the Father gives Me will come to Me, and the one who comes to Me I will by no means cast out.

Christ is conveying an important message through this passover meal, to make us understand that “coming to Him” and “believing in Him” is extremely important to have eternal life.

Preparation:

1 Cor 11:28-30 But let a man examine himself, and so let him eat of the bread and drink of the cup. For he who eats and drinks in an unworthy manner eats and drinks judgment to himself, not discerning the Lord’s body. For this reason many are weak and sick among you, and many sleep.

We know Paul is not referring to a physical weakness or sleep but a spiritual one. We also know that kingdom of Heaven is not about eating and drinking. We also know from Mark 7:15 that nothing that enters a man from outside can defile a man. So, how is that we can come to Christ and believe in Him unworthily? Yes! We can come to Christ and even believe in Him unworthily.

Coming to Christ Unworthily

Remember the parable of the Wedding invitation in Matthew 22.

Matt 22:11-13 “But when the king came in to see the guests, he saw a man there who did not have on a wedding garment. So he said to him, ‘Friend, how did you come in here without a wedding garment?’ And he was speechless. Then the king said to the servants, ‘Bind him hand and foot, take him away, and cast him into outer darkness; there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.’

Garment is often referred in Scriptures as righteousness as in Ps 132:9.

Ps 132:9a Let Your priests be clothed with righteousness

We are to be clothed with righteousness. We can even respond to the King’s invitation and go. But if we are without righteousness we are unworthy. This is why for the church of Sardis we see:

Rev 3:4 “You have a few names even in Sardis who have not defiled their garments; and they shall walk with Me in white, for they are worthy.

Therefore, do not defile your garments if you are to be found worthy to walk with Christ.

Matt 16:24 Then Jesus said to His disciples, “If anyone desires to come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow Me.

Isn’t we are to come to Him how we are and He shall cleanse us with His blood? Very true, but coming to Christ means you need to deny yourself, take up your cross and follow Him. You cannot come to Christ by refusing to deny yourself or not taking up your cross. Those who walk on the broadway instead on the narrow and difficult path, come to Christ unworthily.

 

Believing in Christ Unworthily

Remember the parable of Sower in Luke 8?

Luke 8:11-15 “Now the parable is this: The seed is the word of God. Those by the wayside are the ones who hear; then the devil comes and takes away the word out of their hearts, lest they should believe and be saved. But the ones on the rock are those who, when they hear, receive the word with joy; and these have no root, who believe for a while and in time of temptation fall away. Now the ones that fell among thorns are those who, when they have heard, go out and are choked with cares, riches, and pleasures of life, and bring no fruit to maturity. But the ones that fell on the good ground are those who, having heard the word with a noble and good heart, keep it and bear fruit with patience.

We are not to believe or have faith like the way side, rocky, filled with thorns but a good ground to produce fruit with patience. If you believe like the seed that fell on the way side, where you do not believe and the devil will take away the word of God from their heart. If you believe like the seed that fell on the rocky ground, it doesn’t have roots or a strong foundation on Christ. They will believe for a while and will soon wither with temptations come. If you believe like the seed that fell among thorny ground chocked with the pleasures of this world, it becomes unfruitful bearing no fruit to maturity. But if you believe like the see that fell on good ground, you become very fruitful, bearing fruits with patience.

Jas 2:20 But do you want to know, O foolish man, that faith without works is dead?

Therefore, do not believe Christ unworthily by having only faith and no works or fruits to maturity.

Communion

Matt 26:26-28 And as they were eating, Jesus took bread, blessed and broke it, and gave it to the disciples and said, “Take, eat; this is My body.” Then He took the cup, and gave thanks, and gave it to them, saying, “Drink from it, all of you. For this is My blood of the new covenant, which is shed for many for the remission of sins.

Beware! Do not come to Christ without denying yourself having no desire to follow Him. Do not believe in Christ without having any works or fruits to maturity. These are referred as taking part in communion or fellowship with Christ in an unworthy manner.