Wednesday, April 12, 2006

Last Supper Significance

"Jesus' last meal with his followers was a deliberate double drama. As a Passover meal (of sorts), it told the story of Jewish history in terms of divine deliverance from tyranny, looking back to the exodus from Egypt and on to the great exodus that was still eagerly awaited. But Jesus' meal fused this great story together with another one: the story of Jesus' own life and of his coming death. It somehow involved him in the god-given drama, not as a spectator, or as one participant among many, but as the central character....

Jesus intended this meal to symbolize the new exodus, the arrival of the kingdom through his own fate. The meal, focused on Jesus' actions with the bread and cup, told the Passover story, and Jesus' own story, and wove these two into one....

....that those who shared the meal, not only then but subsequently, were the people of the renewed covenant, the people who received 'the forgiveness of sins', that is, the end of exile. Grouped as they were around him, they constituted the true eschatological Israel."
--Tom Wright, Jesus and the Victory of God, p.554, 559, 563


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