Monday, July 21, 2008

Christology & the Prohibition on Eating Blood in the OT

One of the reasons I accept the Lutheran doctrine of the Supper relative to the Reformed doctrine is that the Reformed doctrine seems to me to leave a pretty significant Old-Testament Christological theme sitting on the table.

From Noah onward, God expressly forbade people from eating blood, "for the blood is the life, and you shall not eat the life with the flesh" (Dt 12.23, cf,. Gn 9.4, Lev 7.11, 14).

"The blood is the life."

So when Jesus comes along and says "you have no life in yourselves" "unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood" (Jn 6.53), well, that seems really straight forward based on the OT teaching.

The blood is the life. We do not have life in ourselves, so we must get life, and the way to get life is to drink blood. Not just any blood, mind you, but the blood of the Savior. We drink his blood, and receive life as a result, because "the blood is the life."

Denying that we receive Christ's true blood in the Supper just seems to me to make a thematic dead end out of the OT prohibition on eating blood, because "the blood is the life."


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