28 Mar The Last Supper
The Last Supper
Matthew 26, Mark 14, Luke 22
The Story of the Last Supper that Jesus had with His disciples recorded in Matthew 26, Mark 14, Luke 22 and 1 Corinthians 11 has been the basis of the Lord’s Supper that Christians have celebrated for a couple of thousand years now. Christians have continued to celebrate it because of their obedience to the Lord’s command. I too have been celebrating it for 30 plus years, and it has always been a truly meaningful experience for me because I am constantly reminded of what Jesus went through to save me. However, after learning from a Bible Historian what the Jews practiced in marriage proposals, I now have an even more personal experience whenever I partake of the Lord’s Supper.
Back at the time of Jesus, when a young man wanted to be married, he and his father would go to visit the house of a young woman that they thought to be appropriate to be his wife. They would sit together with the young woman and her father, just the four of them, and they would negotiate this new marriage. As part of the negotiation, they would decide on what was called the bride price, and the young woman’s father would ask a great deal of money for his daughter because she was a very valuable possession.
When at last they had decided on the price, and it’s fair to say that the bride price would rival the price of a new home, the young man’s father would pour a cup of wine and hand it to his son. The son would take the cup and hold the wine out to the young girl and say to her,
“This cup I offer to you.” In other words, “I love you and I offer you my life”.
At that moment, the young woman would have to make a decision. She could say, “No, I don’t want to take that offer, I don’t want your life” or she could take the cup and lift it to her mouth and, by drinking it, say, “I accept your life and I give you mine.”
I never realized that whenever I take the cup, and I drink from it, in effect I’m saying to God, “I accept Your gift, I’ll take Your life, and I give You my life in return.”
Grooms pay a very high price for their bride, but not many of them thought that when they offered the cup they would really have to give their life for her. Yet Jesus, for the Church, His bride, paid a price so high.