What & Why Are You Eating?
Some people eat to live and others live to eat! People that eat to live tend to think from more of a nutritional perspective as they are eating. Eating is something they do to sustain and enable life. Whereas those that live to eat make food the focus of living. Eating becomes the main means of entertainment, and sefl-satisfying comfort and enjoyment is derived from consuming pleasurable foods, regardless of whether they are healthy or not. Those that live to eat are constantly on the look out for new kinds of food and places to eat and ways to satisfy their continual hunger for more.
Now all of this is certainly not meant to heap accusation or guilt on anyone for enjoying a good meal. Far from that, the reason for writing this is to point out a simple truth of scriptural reality. Jesus is quoted in the gospel of John as saying: "I tell you the truth, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood, you have no life in you. Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life, and I will raise him up at the last day. For my flesh is real food and my blood is real drink. Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood remains in me, and i in him. Just as the living Father sent me and I live because of the Father, so the one who feeds on me will live because of me." John 6:53-57 (NIV)
A number of the Jews who heard Jesus say this had a difficult time accepting His words because on the surface it appeared He was promoting cannibalism and the drinking of blood, abhorant practices to the Jew. But of course this is not what Jesus was teaching. We know He was speaking of eating the Passover Lamb and drinking the blood of the vine. But without getting into a discussion of Communion practices I would like you to notice the pattern displayed by Jesus as He served the disciples their festival meal. In Matt. 26:26-28, "While they were eating, Jesus took bread, gave thanks and broke it (separated it), and gave it to his disciples, saying, 'Take and eat; this is my body (considered bread as His body).' Then he took the cup, gave thnks and offered it to them, saying, 'Drink from it, all of you. This is my blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many for the forgiveness of sins.'"
This was not a new pattern and it was even older than most believers understand. It was not just a repetition of the Old Covenant feast practices but it was a pattern set forth by His Father in Heaven and it is more about worship than food. It is about thanksgiving or gratitude which is what the word "eucharist" means. Eucharist is the term many Christians attach to Holy Communion.
God the Father in the book of Genesis took the creation, separated it (water, land, sky), distributed it (gave it to man to tend, live on and develop). God said, "I give you every seed-bearing plant on the face of the whole earth and every tree that has fruit with seed in it. They will be yours for food." Gen. 1:29 (NIV) God then celebrated and enjoyed His good creation (gave thanks and considered it) in the Sabbath Rest with man. God the Father SET A PATTERN in place for His Son to follow. Jesus was following His Father's plan and pattern as He celebrated the Feast with His disciples.
Not surprisingly then in the Book of Revelation there is the statement, "Blessed are those who are invited to the wedding supper of the Lamb!" Rev. 19:9 (NIV) Without getting into any discussion of Eschatology the simplest understanding is that the believer has a standing invitaion to continually live by eating the meal of the Lamb and feasting on His life and all that He provides as we continually worship and live in Him! A secular philosopher spoke a measure of truth when he said, "You are what you eat!" - German philosopher Ludwig Feuerbach.
From the beginnings of God's book to the last book their is an ongoing PATTERN of eating to live in the Feast of the Lord and life of the Lamb. Amen! We live by consuming Him and His word. We worship with thanksgiving and lives of gratitude and obedient love as we feast on Him. We eat to live and we live what we eat.
Food for thought from Pastor Tom.