Jesus and Paul: 1 Corinthians 11.23–26 (5 September 2020)

Bible Society's Daily Reflections follow the M'Cheyne Bible reading plan, designed for those who want to read the whole Bible in one year. Each reflection focuses on one of its four daily chapters. Darllenwch rhain yn Gymraeg.



Still my mind, Lord, and let me hear you.


Daily reflection: 1 Corinthians 11

Biblical scholars commonly assume that Paul’s letters are older than the Gospels. This would make 1 Corinthians 11.23–26 our earliest reference to the Lord’s Supper.

The passage stands out amidst a series of guidelines for ancient Christian worship. It is so similar to the Gospel accounts of Jesus celebrating the Passover meal with his disciples that Paul can hardly mean a direct revelation as he talks about having received the Last Supper tradition from the Lord (verse 23). Might he mean that Jesus revealed to him the meaning of his suffering and death? After all, the cross of Christ and its significance for the human race are at the heart of Paul’s teachings.

Some modern scholars have accused him of twisting Jesus’ message; yet, here we have Paul aligning himself completely with Christ’s own interpretation of what was to come: freely he would give his life as a ransom. ‘This is my body, which is for you’ (verse 24).



Lord, thank you for offering a way out of sin and pain, through Christ crucified.

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