No Good Friday Eucharist

I’m trying to work things out, as usual, but this is an attempt to put forth my view that the Eucharist isn’t appropriate for Good Friday. Tell me what you think:

The Eucharist is for joy and not for weeping, for communion (κοινωνία) rather than expiation (ἱλασμός) – of which Paul asks, ‘What fellowship has light with darkness?’ For dayspring has visited us from on high. Why else was it on the first day of the week (resurrection day, not crucifixion day) that the disciples come together to break bread? καὶ γὰρ τὸ πάσχα ἡμῶν ἐτύθη Χριστός (‘for “our Passover has been sacrificed”, even Christ!’).

Our Passover holocausts, commanded for Israel in the law of Moses (Num 28.16–25), have been done, completed, fulfilled: And every priest stands daily at his service, offering repeatedly the same sacrifices, which can never take away sins. But when Christ had offered for all time a single sacrifice for sins, he sat down at the right hand of God, waiting from that time until his enemies should be made a footstool for his feet. For by a single offering he has perfected for all time those who are being sanctified. The blood’s on our lintels forever; we’ve been baptized into the holy Name; we’ve died in the Sea and been brought to eschatological life.

The sacrificial meal in the Old Testament, the meal of fellowship, takes place after the sacrifice (notwithstanding the Seder meal, which isn’t in itself a sacrifice of atonement). It’s joyful thanks upon deliverance, not mourning in the shadow of death. Meanwhile, the Seder proleptically does celebrate Israel’s deliverance from the hands of those that hated them, much as Palm Sunday does in some ways (and Lord’s Days during Lent): it’s about life through death. Fear and dread shall fall upon the Gentiles; by the greatness of his arm they shall be as still as a stone, till YHWH’s people pass over, which he has purchased.

O thou that gavest manna in the wilderness, give us to eat that thou hast given: whoso eateth thy flesh, and drinketh thy blood, hath eternal life; and thou wilt raise him up at the last day. Christ is risen from the dead, trampling down death by death, and upon those in the tombs bestowing life! Then we eat of a peace offering.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s