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In ancient Biblical traditions, blood was synonymous with life. This was reflected in the prohibition against consuming blood with meat. After the flood, God instructed Noah, “Only meat with its lifeblood still in it you shall not eat” (Gen 9:4). Later, God reinforced this command to the Israelites: “No one among you, not even a resident alien, may consume blood” (Lev 17:12), emphasizing that “the life of the flesh is in the blood” (Lev 17:11).

The Holy Eucharist

During the Last Supper, Jesus instituted the Holy Eucharist, transforming the traditional Passover meal. He declared the bread to be His body and the wine to be His blood, inviting the apostles to partake in them. This act of transubstantiation symbolized Jesus sharing His life with His disciples and established the new Passover. This new covenant signified humanity’s deliverance from sin and Satan, leading them to the heavenly promised land.

The Crucifixion and Prophecy Fulfillment

At the crucifixion, Jesus’ body was pierced, and blood and water flowed from His side. This event fulfilled the prophecy in Zechariah: “They will look upon him whom they have pierced” (Zec 12:10). The Gospel of John describes how a soldier’s spear ensured Jesus’ death, causing blood and water to flow from His chest. The blood represents the Holy Eucharist, while the water signifies baptism, marking these sacraments as Christ’s final gifts for our salvation.

Symbolic Interpretations

Christian theology finds deep meaning in the water and blood from Jesus’ side. Water symbolizes baptism, cleansing believers of original sin, while blood represents the Holy Eucharist, nourishing the soul for eternal life. This dual symbolism was affirmed in the visions of Sister Faustina, who played a significant role in promoting the Divine Mercy devotion. Additionally, some theologians draw parallels between the creation of Eve from Adam’s side and the birth of the Church from Jesus’ side. Through baptism and the Eucharist, the Church initiates and sustains Christian life.


The significance of blood and water flowing from Jesus’ side at His crucifixion provides profound insights into the Christian faith. Here are reflections for us based on this powerful event:

The Sacredness of Life and Sacrifice
In the Old Testament, the prohibition against consuming blood underscored the sacredness of life. Blood was viewed as the life force given by God. Jesus transformed this understanding by offering His body and blood to His followers during the Last Supper. This act of love and sacrifice calls Christians to view life as a sacred gift and to respect its sanctity. Jesus’ ultimate sacrifice challenges us to live selflessly, serving others with compassion.

The New Covenant
By instituting the Holy Eucharist, Jesus established a new covenant, shifting from the old Passover to a new one. This covenant promises freedom from sin and entry into heaven. Christians are reminded of the Eucharist’s importance as a means of sharing in Jesus’ divine life. It calls us to embrace the new life Christ offers, marked by grace and eternal hope.

Baptism and Spiritual Rebirth
The water that flowed from Jesus’ side symbolizes baptism, the sacrament of spiritual rebirth. Through baptism, Christians are cleansed of original sin and initiated into the Christian life. This reminds us of our baptismal promises and calls us to live as new creations in Christ. It invites us to renew our commitment to follow Jesus daily.

Eucharistic Nourishment
The blood that flowed from Jesus’ side signifies the Holy Eucharist, which nourishes our souls. When we partake in the Eucharist, we receive Christ’s life, becoming one with Him. This reflection encourages us to approach the Eucharist with reverence and gratitude, recognizing it as our spiritual sustenance for our faith journey.

The Birth of the Church
The creation of Eve from Adam’s side parallels the birth of the Church from Jesus’ side. Just as Eve was given life from Adam, the Church receives life from Jesus. This calls us to appreciate our role as members of the Church, contributing to its mission of spreading the Gospel and serving others.

Embracing Divine Mercy
The visions of Sr. Faustina emphasize the mercy flowing from Jesus’ side. The blood and water represent divine mercy available to all humanity. Reflecting on this, Christians are called to trust in God’s boundless mercy and to extend that mercy to others. It challenges us to be merciful and compassionate in our interactions, reflecting Jesus’ heart in our world.

Living the Reflection

In practical terms, these reflections can be lived out by:
1. Participating Regularly in the Sacraments: Attending Mass and receiving the Eucharist frequently to stay spiritually nourished.
2. Renewing Baptismal Promises: Regularly reflecting on and renewing our commitment to the values and promises made at baptism.
3. Serving Others: Living a life of service, putting others’ needs before our own, and showing Christ’s love through our actions.
4. Embracing Mercy: Practicing forgiveness and compassion in our daily interactions, embodying the mercy that flows from Jesus.

By contemplating the blood and water from Jesus’ side, Christians can deepen their understanding of the sacraments, embrace the new life in Christ, and commit to living a life of sacrificial love and mercy.

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