The Significance of the Cup

photo by hoyasmeg via PhotoRee

In the same way, after the supper he took the cup, saying, “This cup is the new covenant in my blood, which is poured out for you. __Luke 22:20 (NIV)

On the eve of the Passover feast, Christ, the Lamb of God, shared a last supper with His disciples. One of them would betray Him. Before dawn, the others would desert Him and one of them—Peter, the Rock—would deny Him.

“This is my blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many for the forgiveness of sins.”  (Matt 26:28)  Luke inserts the word “NEW” before covenant.  God provides for Himself a Lamb and institutes a NEW covenant with those who believe.  A radically, wonderfully, unconditionally NEW Covenant!  Paul explained the revolutionary “newness” of the New Covenant in (among other passages) his letter to the saints at Colossae:

 [Thus you were circumcised when] you were buried with Him in [your] baptism, in which you were also raised with Him to a new life] through [your] faith in the working of God as displayed] when He raised Him up from the dead. And you who were dead in trespasses and in the uncircumcision of your flesh (your sensuality, your sinful carnal nature), [God] brought to life together with [Christ], having [freely] forgiven us all our transgressions, Having cancelled and blotted out and wiped away the handwriting of the note (bond) with its legal decrees and demands which was in force and stood against us (hostile to us). This [note with its regulations, decrees, and demands] He set aside and cleared completely out of our way by nailing it to [His] cross. [God] disarmed the principalities and powers that were ranged against us and made a bold display and public example of them, in triumphing over them in Him and in it [the cross].” __Colossians 2:12-15 (The Amplified Bible)

Do you get that saints? When Jesus said “I came to fulfill the Law”, this is what He meant: to become, once and for all, the atoning sacrifice that fulfills the requirements of the Law and cancels sin. The devil has no accusation now to bring against you, if you are in Christ Jesus! Perhaps you would need to have lived in 1st century Jerusalem to understand how burdensome the Pharisees had made the Law, but today legalism in the Church obscures what Christ has done for us! The “regulations, decrees, and demands” (food laws, tithing laws, temple sacrifices, etc.) have been “set aside” for those who are “in Christ”. He writes His perfect law upon our hearts:

Jesus said to him, “‘you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind.’ This is the first and great commandment. And the second is like it: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ On these two commandments hang all the Law and the Prophets.”__ Matthew 22:37-40 (NKJV)

Only when we understand and appropriate fully how radically New this Covenant is compared to the Old Covenant can we give Him our whole hearts! Only in the New Covenant power, sealed and administered by the Holy Spirit, can we walk by grace in this world, consumed with love for God and our neighbor. Spiritual “to do lists” and observances of Old Testament rules (our works, our efforts) distance us from Christ Himself. The New Covenant dispenses with everything that stands between you and God—including your own effort and works—and opens heaven!

 “For in Him dwells all the fullness of the Godhead bodily; and you are complete in Him, who is the head of all principality and power”. __ Colossians 2:9-10

We are “complete in Him” new creatures in a new creation. We are not merely “sinners saved by grace”. We have received a full pardon and have been restored to the place in God’s family He intended from before the foundation of the world! We have been robed in the righteousness of Christ and seated at the feast table like the prodigal son. We have been given rings of sonship. and all the riches of our Father are opened to us—not in the “sweet by and by”, but now! We are assured a place at the wedding supper of the Lamb. This is the significance of the cup of the New Covenant!

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Comments

  1. @”Peter, the Rock—would deny Him.”
    ——————————————–

    Peter is the stone.

    Jesus is the Rock

    – grace and peace

  2. Very good! The newness of the new covenant is missed by so many who seek a return to the shadows of the old.

    • very true indeed!

      Jesus said
      “this is the New Covenant in my blood, as often as you drink it, do this in remembrance of me”

      also he said

      “tell you the truth, wherever this gospel is preached throughout the world, what she has done will also be told, in memory of her.”

      now the question is this to the churches

      are we hearing the story of this woman? why not? is the gospel preached?
      are we preaching about Jesus? Is our messages focused on Jesus?

      or are we preaching more on morality? on the Laws? on commandments?
      on how to live your life? 12 steps?

      well, we have redefined the gospel by works.

      “I am not ashamed of the gospel, because it is the power of God for the salvation of everyone who believes: first for the Jew, then for the Gentile.

      For in the gospel a **righteousness from God is revealed**, a righteousness that is by faith from first to last, just as it is written: “The righteous will live by faith.”

      – Romans 1:16-17

      the gospel reveals the Righteousness of God.
      Not the sinfulness of Man

      the gospel reveals the Righteousness of God.
      Not the Laws or Commandments man must keep

      the gospel reveals the Righteousness of God.
      Not the Morality or good conducts a person must perform

      the gospel reveals the Righteousness of God.
      Not that “Man must love God” rather “Gods love for man”

      obedience, good conduct, righteous works, Love towards God and others
      follows after a person who is righteous. who is righteous by faith

      sorry.. long post..

      great post.

      – grace and peace

      • I don’t have any rules regarding the length of a comment, beloved friend. Especially when we are in one accord, exalting the name of Christ above all names and giving thanks that He has set us free indeed! Thank you for sharing!

  3. Beautifully said, Leah! We are no longer law-keepers… but fruit-bearers! We don’t attempt to keep what is written on stone (which we can’t, anyway), but allow the Holy Spirit to produce the fruit that makes us look like Jesus. God bless, and great to hear from you, good friend!

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