Eating His Flesh and Blood

Eating His Flesh and Blood John 6:48-64 CLICK TITLE FOR AUDIO

This is one of the passages that have been used to teach that communion, eating his flesh and blood, is a sacrament essential for salvation. This is not true and we are going to find out why.

Jesus used their desire for eating and drinking (verses 26-27) as an opportunity to teach them about eternal life. “Ye seek me, not because ye saw the miracles, but because ye did eat of the loaves, and were filled.” They came hungry, and he used their attention as an opportunity to preach. Unfortunately, this looks like it implies that eating his flesh and drinking his blood are required for salvation. If Jesus was speaking literally, then he was teaching cannibalism.

Cannibalism is in the Bible. In Leviticus 26, God tellsIsraelwhat will happen if they disobey him. In verse 29, he says that they will eat their sons and daughters to stay alive. Deuteronomy 28:53-57 says that enemies will besiege their cities and cut off their food, making them eat their children. Even the most loving mother will turn against her family to avoid sharing her child. 2 Kings 6:27-28 describes a situation where two mothers agreed to eat their children, but after they had eaten one the other refused to kill her child.  Jesus could not have wanted them to literally eat his flesh.

In verses 53-54 Jesus also told them to drink his blood. Let’s see what the Bible says about that. If Jesus was speaking literally, he was teaching a violation of God’s direct command. Genesis 9:4 plainly says not to eat blood.  Leviticus 17:10 says God will turn away from anyone who eats blood of any kind.  In any sacrifice, the blood was to be poured out and buried.  Jesus was the sacrifice.  In Acts 15:20 the Jews are trying to figure out which laws apply to gentile converts. Blood cannot be ingested by them either.  It is a sin against God in every time period. If Jesus was speaking literally, then we would be contradicting God Almighty. This can’t be literal.

In Matthew 26:26 what they drank was “the fruit of the vine,” and what they ate was bread. The fruit of the vine was not fermented.  Jesus is the Passover (1 Corinthians 5:7). So, he taught them that the Passover they had been eating foreshadowed his own death for them. The communion we observe now is not a sacrifice, it is a memorial (Hebrews 10:10-14).

What about transubstantiation? Jesus was never transubstantiated anywhere in the Bible.  And we are not instructed to believe it today.

In John 10:4 the woman at the well never drank water to get everlasting life; she believed that Jesus was the Christ.  In John 6:57 Jesus didn’t go every night to eat his Father and drink his blood. How did Jesus live by the Father? He did the works of the Father (John 8:28). How are we supposed to do the works of the Father? John 6:29: “Jesus answered and said unto them, This is the work of God, that ye believe on him whom he hath sent.” John 12:49 says it’s in the words. It is the spirit that quickeneth. The flesh profiteth nothing. Even if you could eat Jesus’ body, it wouldn’t do you any good. If you want life, you are going to have to believe the words of God.