Then he took a cup, and when he had given thanks, he gave it to them, saying, “Drink from it, all of you. This is my blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many for the forgiveness of sins. I tell you, I will not drink from this fruit of the vine from now on until that day when I drink it new with you in my Father’s kingdom.”
When they had sung a hymn, they went out to the Mount of Olives.
Matthew 26:27-30 (NIV)
A not-so-last Supper?
We usually call this meal the “Last Supper.” True — it is Jesus’s final recorded Passover with His disciples, but it’s not His last.
After Jesus’s resurrection, He eats several times with the disciples, breaking bread with them and revealing His glorified self to them. And Jesus makes a super clear point in the above scene: “I tell you, I will not drink from this fruit of the vine from now on until that day when I drink it new with you in my Father’s kingdom.”
Wait? Wine in the God’s Kingdom? Communing with Jesus with an actual meal...in heaven?
We often view heaven in super abstract ways, yet God’s plan for restoring all things is a communion of heaven and earth.
Quite literally, we will walk with Christ in His kingdom one day. It’ll be heaven on earth. And we will get to enjoy His presence, taking part in a type of Passover meal to celebrate the victory of the Lamb.
A Communal Supper
Also, this special meal takes place in a communal context...
- “Poured out for many...”
- “He gave it to them”
- “They had a sung hymn”
The solemn scene begins and ends with communal praise to God: Jesus gives thanks to the Father at the beginning of the Passover meal. He ends it by singing with His discples.
"The solemn scene begins and ends with communal praise to God."
It also highlights Jesus's plan to pour Himself out for "many," redeeming the world back to God.
And now we get to pour ourselves out in service to others.
Good Friday Reflections
As you reflect during Holy Week, think on the heart of Jesus in this scene. He knew the cross was ahead of Him, yet He took the time to show and teach His disciples. To pray with them. To sing with them.
The Final Supper begins and ends in praise. It’s communal. And it points forward to Christ’s return. Though it’s a solemn scene, it is a victorious one.
Take heart that the not-so-last supper and Good Friday point to the return of our King.
🔥 Bonus Sauce!
For a fascinating foodie special on the ancient Passover meal, check out this History Channel special: