Supper: Day 3, Tuesday
"And when the hour came, he reclined at table, and the apostles with him. And he said to them, “I have earnestly desired to eat this Passover with you before I suffer. For I tell you I will not eat it until it is fulfilled in the kingdom of God.” And he took a cup, and when he had given thanks he said, “Take this, and divide it among yourselves. For I tell you that from now on I will not drink of the fruit of the vine until the kingdom of God comes.” And he took bread, and when he had 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.” And likewise the cup after they had eaten, saying, “This cup that is poured out for you is the new covenant in my blood. But behold, the hand of him who betrays me is with me on the table. For the Son of Man goes as it has been determined, but woe to that man by whom he is betrayed!” And they began to question one another, which of them it could be who was going to do this."
Out of all the ways that Jesus could have explained his impending death, he decided to do it through a meal. There he was, eating the Passover meal with his disciples, the meal that defined the origin of the Jewish people. I imagine Jesus spoke the words above when they got to the part of the ceremony about the Passover lamb. Just as the unblemished lamb once saved the people from the wrath of God in Egypt (the angel of death), so a new Lamb has come whose blood will save any sinner willing to have it on the doorposts of his soul.
Can you hear him as he looked around at his dinner guests and said these words? For you, he said. My body given for you, he said, passing the bread to hotheaded Peter. My blood poured out for you, he said, passing the cup to the big-headed Zebedee brothers.
Still today at the Communion table Jesus is present, speaking such promises to you. What he did that next day was done for you. The Jews in Egypt acknowledged their need for the lamb’s saving blood and painted it over their doors. Do you acknowledge your need for the body and blood of the lamb of God? If so, come and partake. If you are hungry and thirsty for the purity and righteousness of God, come. Eat and drink, you famished sinner!
You there, with your colossal ego and cold heart that have left your neighbor impoverished, malnourished, and without Good News – come and drink of the wine of Christ, let his forgiveness warm your soul.
You whose hands are covered with the blood of the people you’ve cheated, hated, and abused – come and wash your hands in the cleansing blood of Christ.
You whose body has been defiled by acts of sexual immorality, whether done by you or against you – come and partake of the body of Christ that was put to shame in your stead.
But you who do not fit into any of these categories, who are not like such men and women – this bread and this wine is for sinners only, you may not partake of it. Go your own way, and don’t come back until you are hungry and thirsty for the grace of God.
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This blog is written by the authors of Cypress Press, meant for the creative illustration and application of God's Word.