Friday, June 28, 2024

Cup of the New Covenant (1 Corinthians 11:25-26)

“This cup is the new covenant in My blood. This do, as often as you drink it, in remembrance of Me” (1 Cor. 11:25).

This second part of the service begins like the first, with Christ offering a blessing connected with thanksgiving. We should always come to the Lord’s Supper with thanksgiving in our hearts for the blessing of Christ’s sacrificial work and His power in sustaining us until we join Him at the eternal feast in heaven.

When Christ says, “This cup is the new covenant in My blood,” the blood of the covenant means, as in Exodus 24:8, the blood by which the covenant was ratified and its blessings secured for the people. “The passage referred to in Exodus shows the manner in which covenants were anciently ratified in the East,” Hodge wrote. “A victim was slain and the blood sprinkled upon the contracting parties, by which they were solemnly bound to their mutual engagements.… The covenant is called new in reference to the Mosaic covenant. The latter was ratified by the blood of animals; the new, by the blood of the eternal Son of God; the one in itself could secure only temporal benefits and the remission of ceremonial offenses; the other secures eternal redemption, and the remission of sin in the sight of God. As the Hebrews entered into covenant with God when the blood of the heifer was sprinkled upon them, and thereby bound themselves to be obedient to the Mosaic institution, and as God thereby graciously bound Himself to confer upon them all its promised blessings on condition of that obedience; so, in the Lord’s Supper, those who receive the cup profess to embrace the covenant of grace, and bind themselves to obedience to the gospel; and God binds Himself to confer on them all the benefits of redemption. In receiving the cup, therefore they receive the pledge of their salvation.”

Christ as our federal head, as our representative, paid the penalty for the broken covenant, a covenant first broken by our initial representative, Adam (Rom. 5:12). Christ shed His blood for the specific object of securing the remission of sins. It was, in this sense, truly a sin-offering. As long as we celebrate the Lord’s Supper, we will proclaim the Gospel of Christ, that He died to save sinners; and those who come to Him in faith will partake of the benefits of salvation and look forward to the day when He will bring all who are His into glory.

In the passages below, how is Christ’s sacrifice better than the sacrifices under the Mosaic system? What does Christ do for us that the Mosaic system could not do? How does Christ’s sacrifice fulfill God’s will and purposes? Meditate on these truths and think on them the next time you partake of the Lord’s Supper.