THE LORD’S TABLE
Comments on the vocabulary of 1 CORINTHIANS 11:23-27
1 Cor 11:23-24 The Bread
For I received from the Lord what I also delivered to you, that the Lord Jesus, in the night in which he was betrayed took bread, and when he had given thanks, he broke it and said, “This is my body, which is for you; do this in remembrance of Me.”
“received” – to inherit a rite, or custom from another
“from the Lord” – special revelation from Jesus Christ
“delivered” – taught
“betrayed” “being betrayed” it was a process, not a single moment
“Being Betrayed” -- compare Matthew 26:21, 23
verse 21 As they were eating, he said, “Truly, I say to you that one of you will betray me.”
Verse 23 And he answered and said, “He who dipped his hand with Me in the bowl is the one who will betray me.”
“which is for you” -- on your behalf, instead of you, for the sake of another; the concept of one as a substitute for another.
“do this in remembrance of me” is a command (present tense), to remember; to do as a memorial where the proposition eis is used, which indicates purpose. “Do this continually for the purpose of remembering me.”
1 Cor 11:25 The Cup of the New Covenant
In the same way he took the cup also, after supper, saying, “this cup is the new covenant in My blood; do this as often as you drink it in remembrance of Me.”
“the new covenant” See Jeremiah 31:31-33 and Ezekiel 36:26-27
“in my” The preposition en is used which can indicate the means by which something is done. It is done by means of His “blood.”
“blood” – just as the “bread” was symbolic of His person (“my body”) so too “blood” must be symbolic, and not so much His literal blood.
OT indications that “blood” is symbolic for death. For example, Genesis 9:6 “Whosoever sheds a man’s blood, by man shall his blood be shed.” Leviticus 20:9 “for everyone that curses his father or mother shall surely be put to death and his blood shall be upon him.”
“From these figures, it is clear that the commonest use of dam (Hebrew word for “blood”) is to denote death by violence, and in particular, that this use is found about twice as often as that to denote the blood of sacrifice.” Leon Morris, Cross, p. 113.
NT indications and use of “blood” for death:
Revelation 6:10 “How long, of Lord, holy and true, wilt thou refrain from judging and avenging our blood on those who dwell on the earth?”
Romans 5:9-10 “Having been justified by his blood, we shall be saved from the wrath of God through him. For if while we were enemies, we were reconciled to God through the death of His Son, much more, having been reconciled, we shall be saved by his life.”
Ephesians 2:13, 16
“But now in Christ Jesus you who formerly were far off have been brought near by the blood of Christ…and might reconcile them both in one body to God through the cross, by it having put to death the enmity.”
Point: When you partake of the Lord’s table, remember first who Jesus is - the totality of the Person of Jesus Christ when you hold the bread - and the New Covenant -- accomplished by the death of the Savior on the cross for you.