In the early days of Christianity the Christians were thought to be cannibals. They taught the concept of eating the flesh of Jesus and drinking his blood so vividly that people on the outside thought they were actually eating flesh and drinking blood.
In fact, the Catholic doctrine of Transubstantiation stems from that era. The doctrine of Transubstantiation teaches that when one receives the wafer and wine from the priest that those symbolic elements actually become the flesh and blood of Christ. That contributed to the belief by some that the Christians performed cannibalistic rites.
Most of us celebrate the Lord’s Supper, or Communion, as symbolic of the breaking of his body and the shedding of his blood for all who will come to him in faith and trust him.
We do not partake of the elements of the Communion to literally partake of the body and blood of Christ, but we do it in remembrance of the price he paid so that we could have our sins forgiven and the doors of heaven opened to us.
When we partake of the Communion we are confessing to ourselves, to God and to the world that the life we now live is not our own. It is celebrating the fact that our old life is dead and our life now is hid in Christ: "For you died, and your life is now hidden with Christ in God. When Christ, who is your life, appears, then you also will appear with him in glory" (Colossians 3:3-4).
The life of Christ in us is the reality of eating his flesh and drinking his blood. As this verse says, Christ is our life. That is why we are to no longer think as the natural man thinks and act as the natural man acts. The old man has died and the new, Christ-man is alive.
Prayer: Lord, I have surrendered my life to you, but I still struggle with being human. Grant me the grace of Christ living through me and help me to be a good representative of Christ. Amen.
Principle: Christ is our life. That is why we are to no longer think as the natural man thinks and act as the natural man acts. The old man has died and the new, Christ-man is alive.
Affirmation: When I receive the Communion I am celebrating the Christ that is now my life.
Reflection: Give some thought to what it means to partake of the broken body and the blood of the covenant. Even if we do not teach transubstantiation we do believe in the power of the symbolic gesture in eating the bread and drinking the juice.