The eucharist as a meal and sacrifice
When Jesus knew it was His last night on earth, on Holy Thursday, he wanted to share His last meal with His disciples, but He wanted them to be fulfilled, and He also wanted them to know the importance of His sacrifice. This meal was called the Passover. Jesus wanted to share a meal to show his thanks to His loyal disciples, and sharing meals was a special occasion during the time of Christ, as it represented unity and a community coming together as one and identifies them as God's people. At the same time, Jesus wanted His disciples to understand the importance of the sacrifice he was about to make. This was why He consecrated the bread and wine into His body and blood; it was to demonstrate how much He loved each of His children that he would give up His life for us.
This is what Jesus was trying to teach us when he used bread and wine as an example of how we show thanks to Him. By sharing a meal and coming together to celebrate the life of Christ in the consumption of His body and blood, we show our gratitude towards Him for saving us from sin. At the same time, Jesus is giving us a piece of Himself, to remind us of the sacrifice He made.
Mark 14: 22-24
22 While they were eating, Jesus took bread, and when he had given thanks, he broke it and gave it to his disciples, saying, “Take it; this is my body.”
23 Then he took a cup, and when he had given thanks, he gave it to them, and they all drank from it.
24 “This is my blood of the[a] covenant, which is poured out for many,” he said to them.
1 Corinthians 11: 23-34
23 For I received from the Lord what I also passed on to you: The Lord Jesus, on the night he was betrayed, took bread, 24 and when he had given thanks, he broke it and said, “This is my body, which is for you; do this in remembrance of me.” 25 In the same way, after supper he took the cup, saying, “This cup is the new covenant in my blood; do this, whenever you drink it, in remembrance of me.” 26 For whenever you eat this bread and drink this cup, you proclaim the Lord’s death until he comes.
27 So then, whoever eats the bread or drinks the cup of the Lord in an unworthy manner will be guilty of sinning against the body and blood of the Lord. 28 Everyone ought to examine themselves before they eat of the bread and drink from the cup. 29 For those who eat and drink without discerning the body of Christ eat and drink judgment on themselves. 30 That is why many among you are weak and sick, and a number of you have fallen asleep. 31 But if we were more discerning with regard to ourselves, we would not come under such judgment. 32 Nevertheless, when we are judged in this way by the Lord, we are being disciplined so that we will not be finally condemned with the world.
33 So then, my brothers and sisters, when you gather to eat, you should all eat together. 34 Anyone who is hungry should eat something at home, so that when you meet together it may not result in judgment.
And when I come I will give further directions.
John 6: 53-58
53 Jesus said to them, “Very truly I tell you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood, you have no life in you. 54 Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life, and I will raise them up at the last day. 55 For my flesh is real food and my blood is real drink. 56 Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood remains in me, and I in them. 57 Just as the living Father sent me and I live because of the Father, so the one who feeds on me will live because of me. 58 This is the bread that came down from heaven. Your ancestors ate manna and died, but whoever feeds on this bread will live forever.”