In biblical teaching, i.e. the spiritual lesson, "eating" is in reference to being like what we eat - earliest man has believed that we are what we eat, and this understanding is in the bible. To not eat "swine" is to not be like those who are fed and then go away, whine, and return straight away without having "chewed the cud". To not eat the "birds of prey" is to not take advantage of those not as fortunate as yourself - not eating "fish without fins and scales" is to not be like those at the bottom of the sea, and so on - spiritual teachings for the spirit - surely everyone is familiar with, "swallowing a camel....".
Christ clearly said that we must "eat His blood" to have life - yet how? How can we find the blood that was in His body? (remember this) - so are we denied life because we weren't there? Of course not. We need to both eat His body - be like Him; and "drink His blood" - become part of His life, His life within us - intimately joined - flesh and blood - body and soul. We are not to take on the life of an animal, even another sheep, a four legged one that does "chew the cud" and "divide the hoof". We are instructed by God not to take on the soul, or life, of another.
So have the life of Christ within you, and be in Christ, everything - there's more room for being an individual. Peter et.al. were taught by Christ, who expounded scriptual meaning to them, and the instructions they gave were given with this knowledge, and taught like Jesus instructed - like He did - hidden in plain sight from those who should not recieve it.
Understanding this type of teaching in a fleshly manner was not uncommon among the people in the time of Christ - as Paul said, "their god is their belly". And if the Pharisee god was their belly, surely the jw god is a body - always concerned about maintaining the body as being 'fine' (this actually means finished) - all at the expense of the spirit, and soul for that matter. This is probably no more evident than their "hearing" on eating blood - while avoiding black pudding they give their very souls to the elders - who also eat their blood, probably no more so than when people die for it.
Flesh and blood will not inherit the kingdom.
I won't be able to reply for a day or so - I'm on my way to uni - hope this helps for a start.
Edited by - a paduan on 29 August 2002 17:42:50