PRECIOUS BODY AND BLOOD OF CHRIST
Christ had announced the necessity of eating His Body and Blood to
have eternal life. Everybody found it difficult to understand.
That was common to all. But one group finding it difficult to
understand left Him. The reason was clear: they did not
understand. When you do something you do not understand, it
becomes difficult if not impossible. The other group made up
of His disciples also did not understand but stayed. And, as
a consequence, they began to understand.
What was wrong with those who left? Their hearts were of the
world. In their hearts they had this natural inclination to be
independent of God's Will and commands, as Adam's and Eve's hearts
were. They would not bear the little inconvenience necessary to
be saved. They were just really waiting for a reason, good or
bad, to abandon the service of God.
The other group, His disciples, was willing to wait patiently to
understand and, indeed, Christ explained it to them and they
Christ emphasized that we have to eat His Body and drink His Blood
to have eternal life -- that His Body and Blood are truly His
Body and Blood. . . and these would be the soul's source of Life.
For when This Food is assimilated by the person, Christ is
assimilated, sort of, into the person receiving Holy Communion.
But St. Paul immediately adds that it is possible to eat the Body
and Blood of Christ unto our condemnation. A seeming
Who are those who eat and drink the Body and Blood of Christ unto
their salvation? Those who have obeyed the commands of Christ
or are in the process of obeying the commands of Christ. In
Holy Communion, they eat the Body and Blood of Christ: the
presence of Christ is slowly assimilated into their beings and
become the source of Divine Life within them, assuring their
And who are those who eat and drink
the Body and Blood of Christ unto their condemnation? Those
who have no desire to know the commands of Christ, or who even
outright disobey the commands of Christ. When they receive
Holy Communion they go through motions of putting the host in their
mouth and eat it but they do not eat the Body and Blood of Christ.
It is because they do not eat that they take Holy Communion unto
their condemnation. . .since to eat is the condition for eternal
This explains the practice in the early church that those who are
still studying the commands of Christ were asked to leave after the
homily, just before the offertory. They might find some
commands difficult and leave Christ. They should leave before
they receive Holy Communion lest they receive It to their
The desire to change our lives, to follow Christ, to know His
commands and obey His commands remove the danger of receiving Holy
Communion unto our condemnation. But, if upon knowing the
commands of Christ, we find it difficult and, as a result, leave
Him, we are not eating His Body, no matter how many times we receive
Holy Communion .