When Jesus is establishing what will be known as the Lord’s Supper, He tells those with Him to “take it.” In Matthew and Mark, Jesus says “take” in regard to the bread.
While they were eating, Jesus took some bread, and after a blessing, He broke it and gave it to the disciples, and said, “Take, eat; this is My body.” (Matthew 26:26)
While they were eating, He took some bread, and after a blessing He broke it, and gave it to them, and said, “Take it; this is My body.” (Mark 14:22)
In Luke, Jesus says “take” in regard to the cup.
And when He had taken a cup and given thanks, He said, “Take this and share it among yourselves.” (Luke 22:17)
Jesus takes bread, gives it to the disciples, and tells them to take. Jesus takes a cup, gives it to the disciples, and tells them to take. For some reason, this simple observation stood out to me recently. In this supper, Jesus is the one who officiates. He is the one who sits in the seat of authority. Although Jesus is no longer physically present among us in flesh and blood, the Lord still officiates the supper. The Lord is still the one in authority. This is why we call it the Lord’s Supper, or we could call it the Supper of the Lord.
At the table, we are in the role of guest and Jesus is in the role of host. It is through an act of gracious hospitality that we have been invited to the supper. As such, Jesus says “take.” The word “take” means something like to actively lay hold of.
The Lord’s Supper is intended to draw us closer to a gracious God. The grace of God is seen at the cross, and the grace of God is also seen each time we are reminded that Jesus said, “Take it.” Receive the bread. Receive the cup.
How foolish it would have been for the disciples to turn down this offer. Can you imagine Jesus saying, “Take it,” and the disciples responding by saying, “No, we’d rather not. Thanks for the offer, but we’re not interested.” We understand that this would be a very inappropriate way to respond to the host of the supper.
Yet, how equally foolish it is for us to reject that which God has offered us. He has given us His Son (John 3:16). God, in His graciousness, wants us to accept what is being offered through our willingness to participate with Jesus’ death and resurrection in baptism (Romans 6:1-10).
When God extends something to us, and essentially says, “Here, this is for you,” let us be humble enough to realize we need what we are being offered.