My mother is slowly recovering from hip-replacement surgery; and after determining she was anemic, the doctor gave her a unit (pint) of blood. As I watched the plastic bag of blood draining into her veins, I was kind of amazed to think that the life of someone else was entering her body. The Red Cross slogan “Donating Blood: the Gift of Life” became more real to me.
I couldn’t help but think of Jesus’ words “Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life… for my flesh is real food and my blood is real drink. Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood remains in me, and I in him" (John 6:53-57).
Centuries earlier God told Noah not to drink the blood of an animal—which would be the equivalent of drinking in its life. Against that backdrop, when Jesus said "Drink my blood,” He shocked the devout Jews! But Jesus didn’t speak those words for their shock value, but to teach a radical life-changing truth. In effect, saying if you drink my blood, my life will enter you! Not until after His death would the disciples be able to comprehend the truth He spoke about that day. Two thousand years later, we are still trying to fully apprehend this wonderful truth—“it is no longer I who live but Christ lives in me” (Gal. 2:20)—we really do live by the life of another.