Mat 26:26 While they were eating, Jesus took some bread, and after a blessing, He broke it and gave it to the disciples, and said, "Take, eat; this is My body." Mat 26:27 And when He had taken a cup and given thanks, He gave it to them, saying, "Drink from it, all of you; Mat 26:28 for this is My blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many for forgiveness of sins.
With the Holiday's upon us at full speed, how often do you find yourself gathered around the kitchen table? The smell and taste of wonderful food and the experience of meaningful interaction between loved ones. It is a place where family and friends join together for a common interest, to be fed. The joy of eating and sharing stories during this time of the year can't be compared.
The twelve disciples reclined around the table with the ultimate dinner guest two thousand years ago. Along with breaking bread and drinking wine, I am sure they shared several stories of their time together. But this table was different. It was the last time they would eat and share together as a group of men following their Lord.
Jesus had a purpose for this last supper together. "This is my body," He said as He broke the bread before His disciples. The bread as a symbol represents the body of Jesus offered for us, "a beautifully simple, pathetic, and poetic symbol of his death." (Bruce) And when He had taken a cup and given thanks, He gave it to them, saying, "Drink from it, all of you; for this is My blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many for forgiveness of sins."
Here are the words of Matthew Henry regarding the writings in the book of Matthew chapter 26.
This ordinance of the Lord's supper is to us the passover supper, by which we commemorate a much greater deliverance than that of Israel out of Egypt. Take, eat; accept of Christ as he is offered to you; receive the atonement, approve of it, submit to his grace and his government. Meat looked upon, be the dish ever so well garnished, will not nourish; it must be fed upon: so must the doctrine of Christ. This is my body; that is, spiritually, it signifies and represents his body. We partake of the sun, not by having the sun put into our hands, but the beams of it darted down upon us; so we partake of Christ by partaking of his grace, and the blessed fruits of the breaking of his body. The blood of Christ is signified and represented by the wine. He gave thanks, to teach us to look to God in every part of the ordinance. This cup he gave to the disciples with a command, Drink ye all of it. The pardon of sin is that great blessing which is, in the Lord's supper, conferred on all true believers; it is the foundation of all other blessings. He takes leave of such communion; and assures them of a happy meeting again at last; “Until that day when I drink it new with you”, may be understood of the joys and glories of the future state, which the saints shall partake with the Lord Jesus. That will be the kingdom of his Father; the wine of consolation will there be always new. While we look at the outward signs of Christ's body broken and his blood shed for the remission of our sins, let us recollect that the feast cost him as much as though he had literally given his flesh to be eaten and his blood for us to drink.
As we gather around the Christmas table and celebrate the Lord's birth, let's not forget this simple message of forgiveness and redemption this year. Christ gave Himself up for me so I could live eternally with Him forever. There is no better gift I could ask for this Christmas and all the year long.