“This is My body which is given for you ... This cup is the new covenant in My blood, which is shed for you.”
At this point, it gets more complicated to avoid talking about specific days of the week. There were two traditions in Jesus' day for keeping the Passover one took place on the 14th of Nisan, the other took place on the 15th. Another complication in talking through what-happened-when is that the Jewish day started at sundown, not at midnight as we are accustomed. Therefore, it is quite possible that Jesus both partook of the Passover with his disciples and was crucified on the same day. (Which we would view as two different days.) So it would be wise to view today's post and tomorrow's as Part 1 and Part 2. Let’s take a look at how this day started.
Matt. 26:20 tells us that when evening had come Jesus sat down with His disciples to share the Passover meal together. Just a note for clarification, this reference to “in the evening” could also have been translated “as the evening was completed.” Anyway, Jesus makes the statements that most of us are familiar with, “This is My body which is given for you; do this in remembrance of Me.” (Luke 22:19b) referring to the bread, and “This cup is the new covenant in My blood, which is shed for you.” (Luke 22:20b) referring to the cup.
Given the way in which Jesus so perfectly and completely fulfilled all of the requirements of the Passover, I believe that He was not only referring to the bread and the cup, but also to His coming fulfillment of the Passover later that day. Most likely when Jesus said, “do this in remembrance of me,” He would have been referring to the celebration of the Passover as a whole, not simply the breaking of bread. We will see later how the Passover was connected to the Feast of Unleavened Bread. Jesus’ reference to the bread of which they were partaking has much more significance when viewed in light of the festival that was about to begin.
Questions for Reflection
- If God is all knowing, do you think it is more likely that He perfectly orchestrated the events of Christ's Passion Week to align with all the Old Testament events, or that the events God previously prescribed were forward looking to this single pivotal event in history?
- Given that God's plans and ways are perfect, are you willing to trust Him enough to take control of your life?