Ch. 21 - The Cup of Consummation

Time: 
1 hr. 19 min.

We delve into the theme of Jesus as the New Passover lamb.  We are told in the Gospels that the Last Supper was specifically the Passover meal, which was celebrated by faithful Israelites once a year.  This meal commemorated the Exodus of Israel from Egyptian captivity/slavery.  When Jesus celebrates this feast, there is no lamb present at the meal - or is there?  Jesus declares the unleavened bread of the meal to be his flesh, and he commands his guests to eat of it.  Just as in the Old Passover, Israelites were commanded to eat of the sacrificial lamb, so we are commanded by Jesus to consume the flesh of the New Passover lamb of the New Covenant in the New Exodus!

We look closely at the Gospel accounts of the Passover and discover that Jesus the Passover meal unfinished with his apostles to go out to the Mount of Olives, for he had not yet partaken of the final cup, the 4th cup of wine, which is the cup of consummation.  It isn't until the moment before Jesus gives up his spirit from upon the cross that Jesus partakes of wine.  John tells us that Jesus said, "I thirst" from upon the Cross and partook of wine given to him from upon a reed; then, Jesus said, "It is finished," indicating that the Passover meal concluded with his death.

In the sixth chapter of his Gospel, Saint John faithfully records Jesus' Bread of Life Discourse where Jesus tells his audience that they must indeed eat his flesh and drink his blood.  His audience interprets him literally, and Jesus explains what he meant by reaffirming this literal interpretation no less than six times!  Not only that, but in four of these six re-affirmations, Jesus switches from the usual Greek word for "to eat" {fag-oh} to a rare literal Greek word {troh-goh} that cannot be interpreted figuratively.  John then only uses this word in one other place in his Gospel: at the Last Supper.  John does this in order to tie the Bread of Life discourse to the institution of the Eucharist, to teach us that it is in the celebration of the Eucharist that we fulfill Jesus' command to partake of his very own flesh and blood, which gives supernatural life to members of the Church, the New Israel.

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