This sermon was based on Luke 22:7-23.
The Last Supper
7Then came the day of Unleavened Bread on which the Passover lamb had to be sacrificed. 8Jesus sent Peter and John, saying, ‘Go and make preparations for us to eat the Passover.’
9‘Where do you want us to prepare for it?’ they asked.
10He replied, ‘As you enter the city, a man carrying a jar of water will meet you. Follow him to the house that he enters, 11and say to the owner of the
house, “The Teacher asks: where is the guest room, where I may eat the Passover with my disciples?” 12He will show you a large room upstairs, all furnished. Make preparations there.’
13They left and found things just as Jesus had told them. So they prepared the Passover.
14When the hour came, Jesus and his apostles reclined at the table. 15And he said to them, ‘I have eagerly desired to eat this Passover with you before I suffer. 16For I tell you, I will not eat it again until it finds fulfilment in the kingdom of God.’
17After taking the cup, he gave thanks and said, ‘Take this and divide it among you. 18For I tell you I will not drink again from the fruit of the vine until the kingdom of God comes.’
19And he took bread, gave thanks and broke it, and gave it to them, saying, ‘This is my body given for you; do this in remembrance of me.’
20In the same way, after the supper he took the cup, saying, ‘This cup is the new covenant in my blood, which is poured out for you. 21But the hand of him who is going to betray me is with mine on the table. 22The Son of Man will go as it has been decreed. But woe to that man who betrays him!’ 23They began to question among themselves which of them it might be who would do this.
- God told the Israelites to kill a lamb and smear its blood on the doorpost of the house. When the Angel of death came along killing the first born sons he would Pass over (Hence the name) those households with the blood on the doorposts. It was originally designed to be eaten with their cloak, sandals, and staff in hand. God told them to celebrate this event every year around early April, with a one-week festival, the centerpiece of which was the Passover meal. Because it reminded God’s people of its central event: its exodus from Egypt
- God had told his people it’s really important that you keep observing this annual ritual, with its story and supper and songs, because it kept their salvation from slavery at the centre of their identity, of who they were.
- So, Jews had been celebrating Passover for 1300 years what makes this one so different is what Jesus says at it and what that means.
The Last Supper Explained
- What Jesus did at this Passover was amazing! He took the normal Passover procedure and changed it, taking the bread and wine, parts of the Passover meal, and reinterpreting them, saying his body, symbolized by the bread, was the fulfilment and replacement for the Passover lamb and his blood, symbolised by the wine, would be shed when he would die as our Passover Lamb.
- This was no normal Passover, Jesus was taking it and giving it a new meaning.
Jesus is our Passover sacrifice. Through his death as the lamb of God, through his blood shed, on the wooden cross, rather than the wooden door frames of Egypt, we are saved from death but not only that we get set free to go to God’s promised kingdom.
- We usually think of remember as “oh yes, right, now I remember.” But in this passage ‘remember’ means more than that. Remember here means to re-enact, to participate once again. It means to recall and represent before God an event in the past, so it becomes here and now. So, it’s more than remembering a fact. It’s realizing its effects today.
- For me when I take communion, there is Sadness but there’s also Joy. Jesus body was broken, his blood was shed for ours sins, there’s sadness for the price he had to pay but there’s also joy in that he triumphed, he won.
- Communion is not just about Jesus saving us from our sins but it’s about the promised kingdom of God that we will one day go to. When we get there there is going to be an almighty feast. Matthew 8:11 says: I say to you that many will come from the east and the west, and will take their places at the feast with Abraham, Isaac and Jacob in the kingdom of heaven.