I’m watching The Bible on the History Channel as I do odds and ends tonight, and I stopped doing what I was doing to watch their depiction of The Last Supper. Jesus tore bread and handed it to his disciples to tear and pass around, telling them “This is my body.”
Since the series was made by a Protestant, I was curious to see how they would depict the scene. And you know what conclusion I came to, watching it?
Taking away the believe that Jesus meant for us to take him literally, the scene just seems really weird.
“This is my Body,” he tells them. But he doesn’t mean it?
“Here, this is how I want you to remember me. I’m going to tell you this Bread is My Body. It isn’t really, but share it and pass it around and it’ll be a symbol of my Body for you. And you’ll eat this symbol, and you’ll share the bread with people and tell them it’s my Body, too. Then you’ll all sit around and pass grape juice in little cups and pretend its a symbol for my blood, and you’ll drink that. It’s not really my blood, but it’ll be a symbol of my blood, so it’s sort of like you’ll pretend to drink my blood.”
Yes, I know that belief in the Real Presence — that the bread and wine truly become Jesus’ body and blood– is radical and crazy. Just as crazy as God becoming Man and walking around this earth for 30 years.
But any other interpretation seems even weirder.