Day 197: A Symbolic New Practice

Luke 22:14-20

When the hour had come, he sat down with the twelve apostles. He said to them, “I have earnestly desired to eat this Passover with you before I suffer, for I tell you, I will no longer by any means eat of it until it is fulfilled in the Kingdom of God.” He received a cup, and when he had given thanks, he said, “Take this, and share it among yourselves, for I tell you, I will not drink at all again from the fruit of the vine, until the Kingdom of God comes.”

He took bread, and when he had given thanks, he broke it, and gave to them, saying, “This is my body which is given for you. Do this in memory of me.” Likewise, he took the cup after supper, saying, “This cup is the new covenant in my blood, which is poured out for you.

Here we have the basis for the practice of Communion that is followed to this very day in churches all over the world. Jesus clearly told His disciples to “Do this in memory of me.” Isn’t it interesting that Jesus didn’t say this because He was going to die, but because He was going to leave after He died and raised. We don’t remember Jesus because He is dead, but because He is alive and away while we bring more people into His family. It is important to understand that Jesus planned on raising from the dead before He died and some of the things He spoke about when referring to being gone were to be interpreted as the time after He ascended to the Father.

Also, notice that Jesus says that the next time He eats of the Passover would be when it is fulfilled. After this, Jesus actually made Himself the lamb for the fulfillment of the Passover in which He saved His own people and everyone in the world who believes.

Some people try to say that the cup really is the blood when you take Communion. Jesus Himself indicates here that He is speaking metaphorically. In this context, He called the wine “the fruit of the vine.” Just as all grape juice isn’t blood and Jesus blood wasn’t actually grape juice, it is clear to me that the juice or wine at Communion doesn’t miraculously turn into Jesus blood. This is just a symbol not the actual body and blood of Jesus as some groups teach. We also know from this context that the Passover lamb is also a symbol so it would not have been out-of-place at all for Jesus to speak symbolically here. It definitely doesn’t condone the worship of a piece of food. The purpose was clearly stated and it is to serve as a memory of this new relationship we now have with God through Jesus.