Saturday, January 14, 2012

Real Presence

And as they were eating, he took bread, and after blessing it broke it and gave it to them, and said, “Take; this is my body.” And he took a cup, and when he had given thanks he gave it to them, and they all drank of it. And he said to them, “This is my blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many. Truly, I say to you, I will not drink again of the fruit of the vine until that day when I drink it new in the kingdom of God.”  (Mark 14:22-25)

What are we to make of these words by our Lord? He points to the bread before Him and says. “This is my Body.”? He takes a cup and says, “This is my Blood.”? Much debate goes on about the ‘Real Presence’, that is, how is Jesus present in the bread and wine of our Holy Communion. It may help us to remember again what Jesus was about to do as He led this Passover meal.

He was about to die as an ultimate sacrifice, a perfect sacrifice for our sins. No more need we go to the Temple and offer a bull or a goat for our daily sins. If the shedding of blood was necessary for the forgiveness of sins (Heb. 9:22) then once and for all it will be shed by the sinless Son of God. When we take the cup we are never to forget this! For that very next day Jesus body was broken on that cross for all of our sins. He became the new Passover releasing us from the bondage of our sins. For if there is life in the blood, (Lev. 17:11) then Jesus desires to have us consume His life for our very nature is death (Eph. 2:1) until we are born again! (Jn. 3:3) We are sustained in our exile from Eden where the Tree of Life was withheld by our feeding on Jesus in the here and now for it is in the here and now we are asked to live!

Never are we to forget what Jesus did that guarantees our eternal life. Let us come to the table humbly because we are not deserving but forgiven. And forgiven if we truly repent. Let us not forget the pain endured by our Savior that saves us from eternal torment for our sins. If we are present with Jesus at His table, then He is really present with us.

HE was the Word that spake it;
He took the bread and brake it;
And what that Word did make it
I do believe and take it. 
~ John Donne