By Jim Killebrew
Send a link to a friend
[April 18, 2014]
they were eating, Jesus took bread, gave thanks and broke it, and
gave it to his disciples, saying, 'Take it, this is my body.' Then
he took the cup, gave thanks and offered it to them, and they all
drank from it. 'This is my blood of the covenant, which is poured
out for many,' he said to them. 'I tell you the truth, I will not
drink again of the fruit of the vine until that day when I drink it
anew in the kingdom of God'" (Mark 14:22-25).*
The Passover meal had progressed to a point where Jesus
interjected this very familiar scene. Breaking the bread, He likened it to
His body. The cup, He said, is His "blood of the covenant."
The Passover meal consists of four cups:
of Sanctification —
based on God's statement, "I will bring you out from
under the burdens of the Egyptians."
of Judgment or Deliverance —
based on God's statement, "I will deliver
you from slavery to them."
of Redemption —
based on God's statement, "I will redeem you with an
The Cup of Praise or
based on God's statement, "I will take you to be my
people, and I will be your God."
At that very moment, Jesus did an extraordinary thing.
He propelled the Passover meal, or the "Last Supper," into a perpetual future
event. Although the meal was likely not meant to end at that time, Jesus
abruptly ended it by saying, "I tell you the truth; I will not drink again of the
fruit of the vine until that day when I drink it anew in the kingdom of
God." He had finished the third cup, the Cup of Redemption, but the fourth
cup, the Cup of Restoration for this meal, would not yet be finished.
[to top of second column]
An act that is never finished is ever-present. It lingers on and
on, never reaching a conclusion or finding complete resolution. In 1
Corinthians 11:24, the Apostle Paul adds that when we eat and drink
at the Lord's table, we should do so in "remembrance" of Jesus.
We remember Jesus in the Lord's Supper not only for what He has already
done in the work of salvation, but in what He is going to do when He
finally brings that meal to a conclusion.
Each time we eat and drink that meal, we should be in a constant
state of readiness, looking forward to finally being with Him and all
those who have claimed Him and His salvation, as He stands at the
head of the table of the wedding supper (Revelation 19:9). There He
will raise the last cup of the fruit of the vine and invite each of
us to drink with Him together as that meal is finally concluded.
In this way, we are not only sharing with Him continually in the
drinking of a cup that is His "blood of the covenant," but are
constantly looking forward to sharing with Him His final victory,
remembering His sacrifice for each of us.
[By JIM KILLEBREW]
* Scriptures from NIV version
Click here to respond to the editor about this