The Blood of Christ.
Blood may be thought of in many ways - it may be seen as a sign of weakness, injury and death. But we also talk of our ‘life blood’. Blood keeps our body healthy and alive. Blood may bring life to others by transfusions. Immunizations give our blood the ability to fight off diseases.
It is a word that is used a lot in the Bible. In the Old Testament we read often of the cleansing power of blood used in sacrifices. Read Leviticus 17:11 to understand why people put their faith in sacrifices. What would happen to those who did not make regular sacrifices in Old Testament times? (If you have time you may like to read Chapters 1-7 of Leviticus to understand the importance of sacrifice).
The Old Testament system of sacrifice was, however, easily abused. Sacrifices were often made with no real repentance. Read Isaiah 1:11-17 to understand God’s thinking.
But in the New Testament we read of how the blood of Christ was the ultimate sacrifice for our sins. Read Romans 3: 21-26. Discuss the meaning of verse 25 in your own lives.
Read 1 Peter 1:18-19. Why is Jesus described as the Lamb?
The blood of Jesus - the Lamb of God - is in one sense a sign of great weakness. God entered our world in human form. Here the idea of immunization may be helpful. Just as a tiny amount of vaccine has the ability to help our whole body to fight off disease, so the blood of Jesus in one sense has ‘immunized us’. His blood has the power to protect us from our sins which would otherwise separate us from God.
When we drink communion wine, it may be helpful to remember that this is his blood which has been prepared for you - this is his life which was lived for you and can now be shared by you. He was tired, frustrated, tempted, abandoned - tomorrow you may feel tired, frustrated, tempted or abandoned. When you do, you may use his strength and share his spirit. He has overcome the world for you.