Scripture: John 6:52 The Jews then disputed among themselves, saying, “How can this man give us his flesh to eat?” 53 So Jesus said to them, “Very truly, I tell you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood, you have no life in you. 54 Those who eat my flesh and drink my blood have eternal life, and I will raise them up on the last day; 55 for my flesh is true food and my blood is true drink. 56 Those who eat my flesh and drink my blood abide in me, and I in them. 57 Just as the living Father sent me, and I live because of the Father, so whoever eats me will live because of me. 58 This is the bread that came down from heaven, not like that which your ancestors ate, and they died. But the one who eats this bread will live forever.” 59 He said these things while he was teaching in the synagogue at Capernaum.
Observation: Jesus’ words here sound gross. He keeps talking about people eating his flesh and drinking his blood. Yuck! But Jesus wasn’t speaking literally. He was referring to his coming death and resurrection when he would serve as the “sacrificial lamb”, sacrificed on the cross that our sins might be forgiven. When we accept Jesus as the Son of God who died for us, we are (in Jesus’ words) eating his flesh and drinking his blood.
Application: In ancient times, the worship of many gods required people to sacrifice animals, grain, wine, and other valuables in order to appease them. Some pagan gods even required human sacrifice – which is why the Jews reacted so strongly to Jesus’ words about consuming flesh and blood. Yet rather than asking sacrifices from us, our God sacrificed his own Son on our behalf. That would have blown peoples’ minds in ancient times. No one had ever heard of a god doing such a thing. Yet our God did so. Contemplate on that a bit this morning. God loves you so much, he was willing to sacrifice his own son to be near you forever.
Prayer: Heavenly Father, this morning I confess that I am so familiar with this story it often fails to move me. It’s a sad admission, but it’s true. I’m guessing there are others reading this blog who can say the same. This morning we ask that you, again, reveal to us the amazing love you demonstrated to us by sacrificing your son Jesus on the cross. Let it sink into our spirits as if for the first time. We ask this in Jesus’ name. Amen.