Celebrating the Last Supper According to the Teachings of Jesus

Marilynn Dawson By Marilynn Dawson, 8th Oct 2013 | Follow this author | RSS Feed | Short URL http://nut.bz/18wm3twu/
Posted in Wikinut>Family>Religion

The Last Supper has become famous around the world, not merely for the painting, but also for the remembrance of what Christ said He would do for mankind. Today we will look at celebrating the Last Supper based on how Christ asked His disciples to observe it.

Christ's Instructions and Reasons

Christ explains what He is doing and why He is doing it in the Gospels, most notably Matthew. 26:26-29, Mark 14:22-26, Luke 22:15-20, and lastly, 1st Corinthians 11:23-32. This last passage is typically given as the instructions Christ gave to the Apostle Paul concerning the Last Supper.

Passover

At the outset, it must be noted that the Last Supper was the Passover Seder in the Jewish calendar. Jesus had told His disciples to find a donkey with her colt, and to ask the donkey's owner where the room was where they were to make Passover preparations. This would have seemed like any other Passover Seder to begin with. The disciples prepared the meal, Jesus arrived. But as they began to eat, Jesus stood up and gave the words found in the passages above. The fact this scene is recorded in three of the four Gospels shows just how important it is to the Christian faith.

What would forever change the Passover meal in the lives of believers, would be the commands Christ gave not only to the immediate disciples, but later to Paul as well. It is this portion of the Passover meal that is has become known as “The Last Supper” in so many homes and churches around the world.

Participation

Participating in the Last Supper requires one to engage in personal soul-searching. It is necessary to make things right with God before accepting the bread and the juice or wine as it is handed out. Failure to make things right before God is responsible for various illnesses and deaths according to the Apostle Paul. Once we have passed through this step, we can move on to the bread, as given by Christ's example.

Christ's use of metaphors during the Last Supper has caused some confusion in various denominations and some strange accusations by those who are unsaved. However, the general understanding remains that as we eat the bread or cracker, we are remembering Christ's broken body. In some ceremonies, matza bread is used because of the stripes and dots present in the bread. As we eat this bread, we remember that by His stripes, we are healed, according to the account given in Isaiah 53.

When we pick up the cup of juice or wine, we learn from the Last Supper that this is a metaphor for Christ's Blood, which is shed for not only our own sins, but the sins of the entire world. As we drink it, we are to remember Christ's sacrifice for our sins and be thankful. It is not out of place to express gratitude at this point in the proceedings.

We are asked by Christ to do this in remembrance of Him in the passage in 1st Corinthians. The Last Supper is engaged in by various churches in equally varying frequency. Some do it at every service, others once a month, others only at special occasions. It has been engaged in at weddings and by hospital bedsides.

Conclusion

The specifics of the ceremony such as whether the congregation files past a priest to receive the emblems, or whether ushers hand them out to seated worshippers, vary from one denomination to another. Some churches wait for everyone to receive the emblems before they partake, while others do it on an individual basis, each within the privacy of his or her own heart. Generally speaking, it is a member of the clergy that oversees the dispensing of the emblems when the Last Supper is engaged in.

This is a solemn ceremony as already alluded to. This state of heart and mind might be enhanced by musicians playing softly and gently in the background, by Scripture reading, and by private and corporate prayer.


Wherever the Last Supper is engaged in, and regardless of the liturgical specifics lovingly engaged in, it is to be done with a clean heart, and in remembrance of the One who gave it to us.

Tags

Communion, Eucharist, Last Supper

Meet the author

author avatar Marilynn Dawson
I am a computer tech by trade, as well as a Christian author and freelancer. Topics range from devotionals and online safety, to how-to's, family finances, product reviews, and more.

Share this page

moderator Mark Gordon Brown moderated this page.
If you have any complaints about this content, please let us know

Comments

author avatar Lady Aiyanna
9th Oct 2013 (#)

I look at the Last Supper as a cleansing that takes place from within wherein its all all about the art of sharing and being part of one big happy family and thinking on similar wavelengths. Many of the people whom I know smile to your face and then rip the brakes off your car and similarly bring the food to put on the table and then stab you in the back just like Judas Iscariot did soon after the last supper wherein Jesus knew he was betrayed but chose to stay on despite it and get arrested while praying in the Garden of Gethsemane on Maundy Thursday and then crucified on Friday after a long walk trudging up to the Golgotha or the Mound of Skulls wearing a Crown of Thorns with everyone shouting Jesus of Nazareth King of the Jews and nailing him to the cross only to be called , King, Redeemer, Saviour, Lord Almighty etc. and then have the symbolic last supper table practiced in the churches all around the world glorifying the betrayal that took place shortly after this resulting in:
1) Peter Lying three times.
2) Judas Iscariot hanging himself to the tree for betraying Jesus
3) Thomas doubting who and what Jesus really was till he felt the wounds himself and going around the world to preach all that he learnt from him especially on Mount Abu which is a shrine to Thomas who got called a saint.

Reply to this comment

author avatar Lady Aiyanna
9th Oct 2013 (#)

Personally read the Bible, know the Commandments and teaching but never partake in the Eucharist as they call it because it is the glorifying of the betrayal of the One Above using the religion as a staff especially after they have hurt and broken an Innocent person for their own personal gain in life.

Reply to this comment

author avatar Marilynn Dawson
9th Oct 2013 (#)

I hear you on the betrayal and how awful such a thing was. We aren't called to remember the betrayal so much as we are called to remember Christ Himself and the price He chose to pay for our sins so that we might be granted eternal life through His death and resurrection. Christ Himself says it this way:

1Co 11:24 And when he had given thanks, he brake it, and said, Take, eat: this is my body, which is broken for you: this do in remembrance of me.
1Co 11:25 After the same manner also he took the cup, when he had supped, saying, This cup is the new testament in my blood: this do ye, as oft as ye drink it, in remembrance of me.

The key phrase there is not Judas, not Peter, but Jesus saying, "in remembrance of Me". All in the focus. Jesus knew what was going to happen before it happened, and even knew who would do what as it happened and told them so. Jesus willingly endured all of this so that you and I might find forgiveness of sins and eternal life.

You have been hurt by those in authority in the church, many of us have, myself included. But I choose to look above them to the One I wish to express my gratitude and thankfulness to in my obedience to remember till He returns for me.

Thanks for sharing your feelings Lady Aiyanna.

Reply to this comment

author avatar Retired
14th Oct 2013 (#)

I think the first thing I did when becoming a Christian was to pray with my friends because we only had water, wanted to take communion, and had no wine. It didn't happen but I learned that it was the act and the meaning of the action that were more important than the symbolism. To put one's heart right, to be sure one is at peace with all brothers and sisters and with God himself, to remember that supreme and wonderful sacrifice and to be cleansed, encouraged, refreshed, strengthened is a truly blessed thing.

Reply to this comment

Add a comment
Username
Can't login?
Password