This is My Body!
Scripture reading for March 9th: Mark 14:22-52, Psalms 52:1-9, Proverbs 11:1-3
“While they were eating, Jesus took bread, gave thanks and broke it, and gave it to His disciples, saying, “Take it; this is My body.” (Mark 14:22)
Jesus and His disciples were eating the Passover meal together. Judas had already betrayed Him and He had told them all that one of them had done this. They were saddened and one by one asked if it was them. Jesus, in Matthew, actually identified Judas as the one. (Matthew 26:25) Jesus knew exactly what had happened and would happen. He had a plan that the Father had revealed to Him and went about laying out that plan so that His followers would remember Him.
In the breaking of the bread, Jesus was giving the disciples a visual picture of His own body being broken for them. He first took the bread from the table, then He gave thanks to God for the bread, then He gave it to the disciples with this simple instruction: “Take it; this is My body.” This pattern of taking, thanking, breaking and giving, had been used in the feeding of the 5000 and the 4000 as well. (Mark 6:41, Mark 8:6) We have nothing that we have that is not given to us by God. We must take it willingly for ourselves. The bread was broken apart and distributed as Christ was Himself broken to be distributed to all who would believe. This bread of His Body must be taken with thanksgiving because of the sacrifice that it represented. It is a gift from God to all His children to nourish them for eternal life!
The final act was eating or feeding on the bread. Bread is the staff of life, and is used in almost every culture as a basic food. Jesus had declared, “I am the Bread of Life. He who comes to me will never go hungry, and he who believes in Me will never be thirsty.” (John 6:35) “I am the Living Bread that came down from heaven. If anyone eats of this bread, he will live forever. This bread is My flesh, which I will give for the life of the world.” (John 6:51) When we eat this bread, we join the disciples of Jesus in the true Passover meal! We are nourished with the Living Bread unto eternal life! As we eat, we desire to be like Him!