Paul wrote to the church in Corinth about the Lord’s Supper. His words reflect the meaning of the supper with Jesus and his close followers.
–– 1 Corinthians 11.23-26 – For I received from the Lord what I also handed on to you, that the Lord Jesus on the night when he was betrayed took a loaf of bread,
And when he had given thanks, he broke it and said, “This is my body that is for you. Do this in remembrance of me.”
In the same way, he took the cup also, after supper, saying, “This cup is the new covenant in my blood. Do this, as often as you drink it, in remembrance of me.”
For as often as you eat this bread and drink the cup, you proclaim the Lord’s death until he comes.
A couple of observations are in order.
(1) Paul equated the broken bread with the broken body of Jesus, as he suffered for the forgiveness of our sins.
(2) Six hundred years before the coming of Jesus, God promised a new covenant through the prophet Jeremiah.
— Jeremiah 31.31-33 – The days are surely coming, says the Lord, when I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and the house of Judah.
It will not be like the covenant that I made with their ancestors when I took them by the hand to bring them out of the land of Egypt—a covenant that they broke, though I was their husband, says the Lord.
But this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, says the Lord: I will put my law within them, and I will write it on their hearts; and I will be their God, and they shall be my people.
The work of Jesus and the Holy Spirit transforms humans from the inside out. The Spirit transforms our inner self and enables us to live according to God’s guidance.
(3) God wants his people to remember what Jesus did for us. He gave us the observance of the Lord’s Supper to remind us of the incredible sacrifice of his only Son for our sake.
Jesus and His Disciples
The night before his trial and crucifixion, Jesus had a final dinner with his disciples.
Yesterday, Rudy Ross and I talked about the “cup” portion of the meal. If you haven’t had an opportunity to look at yesterday’s video, please do so. Rudy does a great job of setting this meal in its proper Jewish context.
The second part of the meal involved the bread and another cup of wine.
— Luke 22.19-20 – Then he took a loaf of 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 he did the same with the cup after supper, saying, “This cup that is poured out for you is the new covenant in my blood.”
Paul wrote to the Corinthians twenty or more years after the first Lord’s Supper. He repeated what Jesus said to his disciples.
The bread was flat and was broken into pieces to be served at dinner. The Gospel accounts of the torture inflicted on Jesus are reported in a quite modest fashion.
The breaking of the Son of God’s body was the cruelest way to end a person’s life known to society at that time.
In addition to the physical and psychological pain inflicted on Jesus, there was the three-hour period when the heavens were darkened. I believe this was the time when Jesus suffered the judgment of God for every sin that has been committed.
Paul described God’s work on the cross like this: “It was to prove at the present time that he himself is righteous and that he justifies the one who has faith in Jesus” (Romans 3.26).
Judges are required to be righteous in their judgments. If not, they can accurately be accused of being unjust or crooked.
When God forgives sin, he is not a crooked judge, because his Son suffered the penalty for every sin committed on the face of the earth.
Through the broken body and shed blood of Jesus, we can be forgiven and justified, provided we receive his gift of love. Praise God!
How can someone who lived close to Jesus for three years betray him? Notice what Jesus said and the response of his closest followers.
— Luke 22.21-23 – “But see, the one who betrays me is with me, and his hand is on the table.
“For the Son of Man is going as it has been determined, but woe to that one by whom he is betrayed!”
Then they began to ask one another which one of them could be who would do this.
In today’s video, Rudy and I talk about how this passage challenges us. The only way that we can know that we won’t deny Jesus or betray him is by remaining close to him at all times.
Rudy Ross and I have talked with each other about the Bible for over 20 years. Once a week, we sit down and record seven videos that can be found on the Bob Spradling YouTube channel.
Rudy brings a Jewish-Christian perspective to the study. You will appreciate his thoughts and insights.
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