Do you know that the Lord’s Supper is a celebration of God’s salvation through Christ?
What would be the best celebration of the most important event in history–God’s salvation of humanity from the power of sin and death through Christ’s sacrifice?
The Lord’s Supper–a Celebration of God’s Salvation
Do you know that we, as Christians, have a special way of celebrating our spiritual freedom? We do this with the ritual of the Lord’s Supper, which Jesus instituted in the evening when they betrayed and arrested Him.
On that evening, Jesus and His disciples were having the traditional Passover meal, which commemorated the freedom of the Israelites from Egyptian oppression and their Exodus after 400 years of slavery. On the Passover night, they needed to slay a Passover lamb whose blood was their protection from God’s judgment over the Egyptians. The Passover lamb was a “(korban) Pesach”–a Hebrew word meaning “protective sacrifice/lamb“.
In commemoration of this wondrous deliverance, God commanded the Jewish people to celebrate each year the Passover feast. (Exodus 12:14)
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The Lord’s Supper – The New Meaning of Passover
On this special festive evening, Jesus gave a new meaning to Passover and instituted the Lord’s Supper–a new way to remember the final “Pesach”
God the Father planned to provide to cover the people from His righteous judgment and to usher them in a new era of spiritual freedom.
Jesus, who would soon be the final Passover Lamb, transformed the elements of the Passover dinner, infusing them with a new meaning and making them elements of the new covenant of God with His people.Jesus, the final Passover Lamb, transformed the elements of the Passover dinner, making them elements of the new covenant of God with His people. #Biblestudy #Passover #redemption Click To Tweet
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.” Then he took a cup, and when he had given thanks, he gave it to them, saying, “Drink from it, all of you. This is my blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many for the forgiveness of sins. (Matthew 26:26-28)
The Symbolism of the Unleavened Bread
The unleavened bread became a symbol of His body to be broken soon on the cross.
The Lord’s Supper is not the first time in the New Testament that Jesus compares Himself (His body) to bread. He calls Himself “The Bread of Life” in John chapter 6. As we need bread to sustain our physical life, so we need Jesus for our spiritual life.
We need to “eat” His words and be filled with His Spirit. Eating is something very intimate: we put the food into us, into our mouth, we chew it, and then it becomes part of our digestive system, bringing nutrients, health, and energy to the whole body. In the same way, when we fill ourselves with Jesus and His words, they become part of us, and they nourish and sustain us, giving us eternal life.
As the true bread, Jesus is the only One that can satisfy fully our spiritual hunger and thirst.
Finally, the symbolism of the bread leads us directly to the cross and His atoning sacrifice. As the bread is been broken, so His body has been broken as a perfect sacrifice to cover our sins once and forever.As the true bread, Jesus is the only One that can satisfy fully our spiritual hunger and thirst. #Jesus #spiritualgrowth #Biblestudy #encouragement Click To Tweet
The Symbolism of the Cup of Wine
The cup full of wine pointed to His precious blood as the blood of the new covenant of grace shed for the sins of humanity. It is not a coincidence that this was the third cup of wine in the Passover ritual that the Jews drank after the meal, called “the cup of redemption.”
With the invitation to partake in eating the bread and drinking the wine, Jesus initiated the time of God’s redemption and salvation.
Jesus gave us a glimpse of another prophetic symbolism of the wine, pointing to the fourth cup of wine in the Passover feast: “the cup of blessing and praise.” A time will come when Jesus will again come to rule on earth, and then the wine will symbolize the joy and the blessings of His Father’s kingdom. (Matthew 26:29)
3 Different Dimensions of the Lord’s Supper
Today we call the Lord’s Supper also by the names of Eucharist and Communion. Each name brings out a different dimension to it.
It is the Lord’s Supper because it commemorates the Passover meal Jesus ate with His disciples.
But it is also the Eucharist (thanksgiving) because in it we thank God for Christ’s work for us.
It is Communion as well because, through it, we commune with God and with other believers.
As we eat the bread and drink the wine, we should be quietly reflective as we recall Jesus’ death and His promise to come again, grateful for God’s wonderful gift to us, and joyful as we meet with Christ and the body of believers.
More Encouragement for You
If you need more encouragement in your Christian life and to grow spiritually, I can highly recommend these books. Check them out.
Knowing God by J.I. Packer
Reasonable Faith: Christian Truth and Apologetics by William Lane Craig
Emotionally Healthy Spirituality by Peter Scazzero
Letters to the Church by Francis Chan
Make Up Your Mind: Unlock Your Thoughts, Transform Your Life by Denise Dubois Pass and Michelle Nietert
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How do you celebrate the Lord’s Supper? Share in the comments and on social media if you found this article helpful. Thank you!The Lord's Supper is our celebration of God's salvation and redemption through the sacrifice of Jesus Christ. #Biblestudy #Communion #Eucharist #redemption Click To Tweet
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