Eucharistic Appetizer-Intro, Adam & Noah

Eucharistic Appetizer  •  Sermon  •  Submitted   •  Presented
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Introduction to a 6-part series on "The Eucharist" in short form (5-10 minutes) as a precursor to an evening of reflection on Prayer & Presence. Chosen to compliment the 3-year USCCB Eucharistic Revival


God’s progressive plan

Good evening! My name is Anne, and I’m thrilled to be leading tonight’s reflection on the Eucharist. So, let’s dive in...The Eucharist didn’t just land in our laps one day…As with most truths God has revealed to humanity, these things take some time…
#CCC 53: “God communicates himself to man “gradually.” [God] prepares [man] to welcome, by stages, the supernatural Revelation that is to culminate in the person and mission of the incarnate Word, Jesus Christ.”
God was intentional...go figure...about building, growing, and maturing his most precious creation to ultimately fully know and share in God’s blessed life.
#We can see this pretty clearly in the progressive covenants God has made with humanity over time:
Individual/Couple - Adam/Eve
Family - Noah
Tribe - Abraham
Nation - Moses
Kingdom - David
World - Jesus
It even makes sense to us to do things this way…think about it...When teaching a child to do *anything,* you have to move slowly and not throw too much at them at once. God, our loving Father, does the same thing for us, never asking us to bite off more than we can chew as He reveals Himself to us.
God brings us along a similar progression with the Eucharist, where God invites us to his table to eat and drink. And it’s this component of the Eucharist (eating/drinking) that we’ll be taking a closer look at tonight where it all began…#

In the beginning...

The creation story in the book of Genesis is fairly well known: God creates everything, including 2 people, Adam and Eve, and places them in the Garden of Eden along with, #“every tree that is pleasant to the sight and good for food. The Tree of Life in the midst of the garden and the Tree of the Knowledge of Good & Evil.”
And what was the one thing Adam and Eve were not supposed to do? EAT
And what did Eve and Adam do? EAT
Original sin entered the world through the mouths of our first parents, and by their choice to eat contrary to God’s command. Theologians call this type of eating “disordered eating.”
There are a few other nuggets in this story of the first covenant that will help us see the big picture when we get to the Book of Revelations, but for now, let’s move on briefly to the second covenant between God and humanity: the story of Noah.
Another very common Bible story:

Noah’s story

Noah builds an ark, God floods the world, 2x2, the whole business. What we don’t often spend time with though, is what happens after the flood: Noah exits the ark and immediately builds an altar and offers a sacrifice of thanksgiving to God. #God then gives to Noah and his family “every moving thing that lives” as their food in Genesis 9:3.
So, again, we have the next progression of God’s covenant with humanity, extending beyond the couple to the family. And we ALSO have a progression of the way in which God provides for the physical nourishment of his people (from fruit to flesh).
And what do you think happens next? #After God makes this covenant with Noah and marks it with the sign of the rainbow, Noah, a man who we know from the Bible is uniquely righteous, goes off and gets drunk and passes out naked in his tent. It’s ANOTHER act of disordered eating . And, I’ll let you take in the account in Genesis 9 in your own time, but ultimately, this act of disordered eating…Noah’s act of drinking contrary to God’s command sets in motion the animosity between the land of Israel and the land of Canaan. If you remember Canaan and Canaanites from the Old Testament, they remain a thorn in the side of God’s Chosen People for generations and generations.
Even through these first two covenants between God and humanity, we can see what a large role eating plays in the gifts God gives and how our own disordered eating has the potential for disastrous consequences.
#In this way, we can see how God sets the stage for, what we now know, is his invitation to share his table and be nourished by the Eucharist.

Tying back to Jesus

Ultimately, all of this is very interesting information, BUT
#How does this strengthen our relationship with Jesus?
How does this help us grow in our faith?
1. God intended us to be a sensory people. Intends us to savor his gifts and an integral part of those gifts is, in fact, in our eating them. Whether it’s the trees in the Garden or the animals after the flood, God takes great care for our physical nourishment.
2. Our natural desire to savor can lead us to sin; our biological imperative for nourishment can become twisted. The most obvious sin of our first parents were sins of disordered appetite, and gluttony something we need to be on the lookout for in our own lives.
3. Now, this is the question I want to leave us with for tonight: If the sins of our first ancestors were due, in part, to acts of eating and drinking, I wonder how God will choose to include us in His Son’s great act of redemption?


Let’s pray...
Father/Son/Holy Spirit
Dear Heavenly Father,
Thank you for the gift to savor not only the physical world you have created for us, but the gift to savor your Word, to be nourished by your gift to us, even from the dawn of time…may we honor this gift by guarding what we allow to enter our mouths, our minds, and our hearts.
In your name we pray, Father Son Holy Spirit.

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