52 The Jews therefore strove among themselves, saying, How can this man give us His flesh to eat?
53 Then Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Except ye eat the flesh of the Son of man, and drink His blood, ye have no life in you.
54 Whoso eateth My flesh, and drinketh My blood, hath eternal life; and I will raise him up at the last day.
55 For My flesh is meat indeed, and My blood is drink indeed.
56 He that eateth My flesh, and drinketh My blood, dwelleth in Me, and I in him.
57 As the living Father hath sent Me, and I live by the Father: so he that eateth Me, even he shall live by Me.
58 This is that bread which came down from heaven: not as your fathers did eat manna, and are dead: he that eateth of this bread shall live for ever.
59 These things said He in the synagogue, as He taught in Capernaum.
Jesus is not talking of the Lord’s supper. If He was, everyone who has never eaten it is in hell. Also, it would mean that salvation comes by the work of eating bread and drinking wine and not by faith alone.
The “flesh” and “blood” is the sacrifice of Christ on the cross. Eating and drinking are the faith that enables us to take part in His sacrifice.
Christ goes further than salvation (verse 53) to speak of the believer’s life in Him (verses 54-58). I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave Himself for me (Galatians 2:20).
The law forbade drinking blood (Leviticus 3:17; 7:26-27; 17:10-14).
Jesus refers to His blood apart from His body because His blood was shed, a clear indication of death.
Eat (verse 53) esthio — simple eating
Eat (verse 54) trogo — munching and crunching, feeding on over time. The tense also changes from one-time event to continuous action.
Verse 55 points to the importance of the object of faith, not the mere existence of faith.
John’s first mention of the mutual indwelling of the believer and Christ (v.56) . A relationship of intimacy and dependency, as is the case with the Father and Son (verse 57).
As the Son lived, while on earth, in humble dependence on the Father, so do believers live in humble dependence on the Son (v.57) .
Verse 58 — Summary of what has gone before. When referring to manna, esthio is used, when referring to the true blood, trogo.
Humanity died spiritually by eating (Genesis 3:6) but can be made alive spiritually by eating.
The believer eats once as an act of faith for salvation, then eats continually and characteristically for a life of faith.
Passover example — The Israelites applied the blood of the lamb, then fed on the lamb.
in the synagogue (v.59) — literally “in synagogue” during an assembly for worship.