Thursday, July 03, 2014

The Vision (7.2.14): The New Covenant Meal

Note:  Last Sunday morning’s message looked at our Lord’s institution of the Lord’s Supper as recorded in Luke 22.  Here are some notes:

19 And he took bread, and gave thanks, and brake it, and gave unto them, saying, This is my body which is given for you: this do in remembrance of me. 20 Likewise also the cup after supper, saying, This cup is the new testament in my blood, which is shed for you (Luke 22:19-20).

With vv. 19-20 we have Jesus instituting the New Covenant meal, the Lord’s Supper.  Notice:

First, the figurative nature of Jesus’ words:  The superstitious view that the bread and cup are magically transformed (transubstantiated) into his body and blood is to be rejected.  Jesus often used figurative language (cf. the “I am” sayings).  Indeed, here the obvious sense is that the bread represents his body and the cup represents his blood.

Second, the emphasis upon limited atonement or particular redemption:  His body is “give for you”; his blood is “shed for you.”  The “you” here in both cases in context refers to the disciples.  He does not lay down his life for those who might hypothetically or possibly become his sheep.  He lay down his life for his sheep (John 10:11). He shed his blood for them.

Third, the command to continue to do this in remembrance of him:  Jesus told his disciples to continue to do this in remembrance of him.  Paul says that as often as we eat this bread and drink this cup we do show the Lord’s death till he come (1 Cor 11:26).  If we love Jesus, we will keep his commandments (John 14:15).

Jesus calls the cup in particular a figure for “the new testament [covenant].”  This covenant would not come through the perpetual sacrifices of animals in the temple but through the once for all sacrifice of Christ on the cross (cf. Hebrews 8:7-13 citing Jeremiah 31:31-34).

Grace and peace, Pastor Jeff Riddle

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