August 20, 2012

For My Flesh is True Food...

God's law forbade the consumption of blood. 

"For the life of every creature is the blood of it; therefore I have said to the people of Israel, You shall not eat the blood of any creature, for the life of every creature is its blood; whoever eats it shall be cut off." (Leviticus 17:14)
If the life of a creature is its blood, then consuming the blood of animals gave you the life of an animal. Those who consumed animal blood were themselves no better than animals, obeying their own passions and living by instinct.

When we consume the blood of Christ, we consume the life of Christ, because the "Life of every creature is its blood."

So Jesus said to them, "Truly, truly, I say to you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of man and drink his blood, you have no life in you; he who eats my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life, and I will raise him up at the last day. (John 6:53:54)
Christ has eternal life. We eat his flesh and drink his blood so that we can live the life of Christ eternally, not the life of a beast, or of an animal, but the eternal life of God.

God reserved the consumption of blood until the perfect flesh and the perfect blood came down from heaven to give life to the world. In this the Law of Moses was fulfilled completely.


June 10, 2012

Exodus and Transfiguration

St. Luke's account of the Transfiguration is unique in one detail.

While he was praying his face changed in appearance and his clothing became dazzling white. And behold, two men were conversing with him, Moses and Elijah, who appeared in glory and spoke of his exodus that he was going to accomplish in Jerusalem. (Luke 9:29-31)

Many miss it when they read this scripture; Jesus was to accomplish an exodus in Jerusalem. That is what Jesus, Elijah and Moses were conversing about - a second exodus. The exodus Jesus was to accomplish was in many ways similar to, and a fulfillment of the exodus which Moses led, but never completed. 

Moses himself never crossed into the promised land, but Jesus rose from the dead and ascended into heaven.

Moses led the people out of slavery and bondage, but they kept slipping into sin and acting like their captors back in Egypt. Jesus however, completes the exodus and gives us a very real way to rid ourselves of sin  - baptism, confession and himself in the Eucharist.