"In Re-membrance of Me."

"Why is this night different from every other night?" the youngest child at a Passover celebration asks. He or she is then answered by being told that this night is the night that God delivered His people from slavery through miraculous deeds. Jews celebrating the Passover did not simply recall what happened all those years ago. Rather, they re-membered themselves to their forefathers, placing themselves back in time. While they were not in Egypt physically, they were in Egypt spiritually. They were partaking of the mystery of their redemption in the format put forth by God through his faithful (and sometimes not so faithful) servant Moses.

Is it any wonder then that Jesus chose this week, so rich with meaning, to be the last week He shared with His Apostles before His passion? Is it any wonder that He chose to take the Passover meal and show them how it too was being perfected in the New Covenant?

Christ came as the passover lamb, His blood was shed for our sins and covers us so that the Angel of Death will pass over us. Christ came and set us free from the chains of a world seeped in false gods and no chance at freedom. He brings us through the Red Sea of baptism, through the wilderness of our lives to the Promised Land where He will live forever with us. And to feed us on the journey through the wilderness, he gives us Bread from Heaven, just as He gave the Israelites. He takes unleavened bread - leaven was symbolic of sin - and consecrates it, turning it into His Body, changing true bread into true God. He takes a cup of wine, traditionally thought to be the third cup at Passover, the Cup of Redemption - and turns it into His Blood. (Random Trivia: Recall, He says He will not drink of the fruit of the vine again until he does so in Glory. Well, the fourth cup is called the Cup of Praise or Restoration. Fitting, right?) He brings the Passover into the New Covenant by making it His and saying, as the Father did many years before, "Do this in remembrance."

When we go to Holy Communion and receive the Body and Blood of Christ, we are not simply going, getting magically changed bread and wine and walking back to our pews, nor are we going, receiving something that simply symbolizes the Last Supper. Paul says that "as often as you eat this bread and drink this cup, you proclaim the Lord's death until He comes." (1 Cor 11:26) and that it is because we share the One Bread that we are the One Body. (1 Cor 10:17). We are, quite literally, re-membering ourselves to the body of which Christ is the Head. We are becoming present at His Passion, Death, and Resurrection. We are, as the Jews did - as Jesus did - re-membering ourselves with the past, present, and future people who will partake of this same meal.

This is the Bread from Heaven that nourishes us as we walk through the wilderness of life, feeding our souls, making us one with Him.

For your listening pleasure, "Remembrance" by Matt Maher.


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