“For every time you eat this bread and drink this cup, you are announcing the Lord’s death until he comes again.” - [1 Corinthians 11:26]
Bread and wine were common to the people in Jesus’ day. They were available to both the materially rich and poor. And on the final night, before Jesus was betrayed, Jesus sat down with his followers to enjoy his final meal.
Echoes from history ring loudly in that somber yet celebratory meal. The meal that Jesus ate with his disciples is reminiscent of the meal the ancient Hebrew people shared before they were miraculously freed from slavery through the Red Sea.
The journey towards freedom always begins with something that looks or feels, on the surface, like certain death.
And every time we eat the grain that has been crushed to make bread, and every
time we drink the grapes that are crushed to make wine, we are proclaiming the victory of Christ crucified.
Now most folks in Jesus’ time did not consider a crucified Messiah to amount to much victory. Many in our own day wouldn’t consider it a win either. It seems like defeat. It seems like the worst kind of loss. But God is able to turn seeming defeat into victory. He turns the cross of Christ into victory. He turns the Edmund Pettus Bridge into victory. He turns Anne Frank’s House into victory.
And as we partake of the bread and wine this weekend, we too, hear the echoes of the past and proclaim afresh in our own day, that life often springs forth from death.
Seeds covered with dirt pierce through the ground. Babies covered by a womb, spring forth and cry out for life. And Jesus, who rests in the tomb, will spring forth with resurrection power. Another world is possible! Be not afraid.