The Weekly Perspective

by Burke Shade, Assistant Pastor

Have you ever wondered, week after week as you sit and eat at the Lord’s Table, how you are now drinking the blood of Christ, but Israeli saints were forbidden to drink blood? Have you ever wondered why the change? And perhaps every once in a while you remember the Apostolic charge to the churches in Acts 15 to “abstain from what has been strangled, and from blood,” and think somewhat squeamishly you might be disobeying that?

The prohibition of eating blood in the old testament comes in the statement “the life of the flesh is in the blood.” Israel was forbidden from eating blood because they were not to get life from the flesh. God didn’t want them relying on the “flesh,” their own power or prowess or strength, which was under the power of sin. No, he wanted them relying on Him.

What changed? Well, the blood of Jesus is not the blood of flesh; it is the blood of the spiritual person, the blood of the person who has risen from the flesh to Spirit. Remember what Paul said in 1 Cor 15? “The first man Adam became a living being; the last Adam became a life-giving spirit.” First the flesh, then the Spiritual man. In communion, you are not drinking the “life of the flesh” but the lifeblood of the Spirit. Drinking Jesus’ blood thus means precisely the opposite of drinking animal blood!

What is effected at the Supper is communion with God in Christ by the Spirit.

So drink from the chalice, all of you!