The Real Presence in the Eucharist

Posted May 16, 2009

Their conversation had come to a crossroads. Who was greater:

Moses or Jesus? Jesus did not avoid the issue but bluntly described himself as the Bread of Life, through whom a person may obtain eternal life and spiritual sustenance while still or earth: “I am the bread of life; whoever comes to me will never hunger, and whoever believes in me will never thirst” (Jn 6:35. NAB). As St. Augustine has observed, Jesus spoke of himself in a way that made him seem superior to Moses, for Moses never dared to say he would give food which would never perish but would endure to eternal life. Moses promised plenty of food for the belly, St. Augustine said, but the food Moses promised was food that perishes. Jesus, on the other hand, promised food which never perishes but which endures forever.

Now Jesus challenged the crowd even further. “Amen, amen, I say to you, whoever believes has eternal life. I am the bread of life. Your ancestors ate the manna in the desert, but they died; this is the bread that comes down from heaven so one may eat it and not die. I am the living bread that came down from heaven; whoever eats this bread will live forever; and the bread that I will give is my flesh for the life of the world” (Jn 6:47-51, NAB).

 The Healing Power of the Eucharist by Father John Hampsch, C.M.F.  – Servant Books