Avondmaal van de Heer, andere betekenissen van Lichaam en Bloed

As can be seen from the preceding quotations, the early church understood Jesus’ words about eating his body and drinking his blood to be primarily referring to the Eucharist. Many of these same writers, however, also believed there were additional interpretations of Jesus’ words.


Christ did this when He appeared as a man, that we, being nourished, as it were, from the breath of His flesh, and having, by such a course of milk- nourishment, become accustomed to eat and drink the Word of God, may be able also to contain in ourselves the Bread of immortality, which is the Spirit of the Father. . . . The apostle had the power to give them strong meat. For those upon whom the apostles had laid hands received the Holy Spirit. And He is the Food of life. Irenaeus (c. 180, E/W), 1.521.

Elsewhere the Lord, in the Gospel according to John, brought this out by symbols, when He said: “Eat my flesh and drink my blood,” describing distinctly by metaphor the drinkable properties of faith. Clement of Alexandria (c. 195, E), 2.219.

You will certainly find nothing else more nourishing, or sweeter, or whiter than milk. In every respect, accordingly, it is like spiritual nourishment, which is wet through grace, nourishing as life, and bright as the day of Christ. The blood of the Word has been also exhibited as milk.
Clement of Alexandria (c. 195, E), 2.219.

He says, “Eat my flesh and drink my blood.” Such is the suitable food that the Lord ministers. . . . The flesh figuratively represents to us the Holy Spirit; for the flesh was created by Him. The blood indicates to us the Word,for as rich blood the Word has been infused into life.
Clement of Alexandria (c. 195, E), 2.220.

To Christ, the fulfilling of His Father’s will was food. And to us infants, who drink the milk of the Word of the heavens, Christ Himself is food. . . . But He said, “And the bread that I will give is My flesh.” Now, flesh is moistened with blood, and blood is figuratively called wine.
Clement of Alexandria (c. 195, E), 2.221.

“Take, drink. This is my blood,” the blood of the vine. He figuratively calls the Word “shed for many, for the remission of sins” the holy stream of gladness. Clement of Alexandria (c. 195, E), 2.246.

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