And when He had taken some bread and given thanks, He broke it and gave it to them, saying, “This is my body which is given for you; do this in remembrance of me.” (Luke 22:19)
In a recent podcast we recorded with Jon and Tristen Collins, Jon mentioned something profound his colleague, Tim Mackie from the Bible Project, once told him:
“You don’t have a body. You are a body.”
We live during a time in human history when people wrongly think of the body as something distinct from the person—that the physical body is some kind of outer shell that covers who the person “really is.”
Likewise, the spirit of the age will blur the power of Holy Week by trying to shift our thinking toward the idea that Jesus’ body was just a vessel for the real Jesus.
But this was not how Jesus’ disciples would have understood their bodies. This is not how Jesus understood his. And this is not the Christian faith.
When Jesus said, “This is my body which is given for you,” he was not giving a secondary part of himself. He was not giving a costume or a shell. He was giving himself—his actual self, everything.
Christianity does not teach that God “put on” a body. Christianity teaches that God became embodied.
Christianity does not teach that Jesus let his body die on the cross. Christianity teaches that God incarnate died on the cross—that he himself hung on the wood, bleeding, tormented, and ashamed.
During this Holy Week, consider the difference between the faulty idea that God lived “in a body” and the truth that Jesus on the cross is God embodied.
Question: How might this shift in thinking change how you see Jesus on the cross? How might this shift change your sense of how Jesus feels about your body?