Written By: Matthew Thompson
Luke 22:19 And when He had taken some bread and given thanks, He broke it and gave it to them, saying, “This is My body which is given for you; do this in remembrance of Me.” 20 And in the same way He took the cup after they had eaten, saying, “This cup which is poured out for you is the new covenant in My blood."
The Passover feast was more than a meal. The evening was steeped in ceremony and symbolism. Each part of the feast came at a specific time and had a specific meaning. One of the traditions upheld during the meal was the sharing of the four wine cups. Each was based on a promise of God to Moses given in Exodus 6:6-7.
The first cup is the Sanctification cup, then comes the Blessing cup, the third is the Redemption cup and the last is the Acceptance cup. It was the third cup, the cup of Redemption that Jesus shared in this passage. Whereas the original cup symbolized the Israelites’ redemption from the bondage of slavery, Christ repurposed the cup to symbolize the coming redemption of humanity from the bondage of sin.
He took that which was a symbol of God's original covenant with His people, and instituted a new covenant by which salvation would be made available to ALL who would receive it. It wasn’t until later that the disciples would fully understand that moment. It wasn’t until after His death and resurrection that they knew why He changed the tradition. It was then that they knew just how precious the cup had truly become.