“While they were eating, Jesus took bread, and when he had given thanks, he broke it and gave it to his disciples, saying, ‘Take and eat; this is my body’…” Matthew 26:261
Take… what an interesting word. My first thought goes to Jesus saying take and eat. There is an invitation, but there is also an action on our part. Actually a two part action, we can take, but not eat, or we can take and eat, but you cannot eat without taking. Take is an action that we must do in order to eat.
You cannot easily force someone to take. It is a choice. Even when someone tries to force someone to take something they have to be part of the interaction. I picture a baby spewing food out all over. They cannot be forced to take. Or all the ways we try to trick a dog to take a pill. We have to cajole and manipulate to be successful, but Jesus does none of that. He is straight forward. He sends the invitation, and offers Himself, but it is up to us to take.
We see a whole group hear Jesus say, unless you drink my blood and eat my body … the response is not a crowd pushing forward to take, just the opposite, they leave. Jesus turns to His closest friends and asks if they plan on leaving too. Peter says, where would we go? Peter and the disciples decided to stay available to take and eat what Jesus offered in spite of the confusion and cost. Jesus turns to us and asks the same thing as He offers Himself. Will we take and eat?