“And he took bread, gave thanks and broke it, and gave it to them, saying, ‘This is my body given for you.’ . . . He took the cup, saying, ‘This cup is the new covenant in my blood, which is poured out for you’” (Luke 22:19,20).
This somber occasion was made more somber by Jesus’ demeanor and his talk of suffering and betrayal. He said this would be his last Passover until his kingdom comes. Judas was already gone. The table talk after the meal revealed one more time that his closest followers still didn’t understand Jesus. They argued about who would be greatest. Peter overplayed his hand, insisting he was ready to die with Jesus. What did Jesus mean when he said this is a new covenant? Is this a new kind of Passover? Is this a new way of relating to God?
When I look around the upper room, my eyes get wide and my jaw drops a little. It’s still hard to understand what it all means. But there’s something to remember always. With the bread, Jesus gave us his body; with the wine, he gave us his blood. The forgiveness of our sins is intensely personal for him and for us. He said, “Peter, this forgiveness is for you. James, this is for you. Luke, this is for you. Jason, this is for you too.”