Hijacking and Repackaging our Symbols

The Kiddush Cup

©Menashe Dovid, 16 Feb 2014

BullJulia Glattfelt asks the question “What’s a Kiddush Cup?” in a post on an emerging blog to promote their agenda[1]. Of course Jesus/ Yeshua used a cup at the last supper which uniquely dovetails in with the Kiddush cup of Judaism, according to Julia. Not only that Julia’s answer flies hot on the tail of the notion that the reader (presumably a Christian/ messianic ‘believer’) who has been convinced that the Torah is still in effect, now is trying to ‘work in’ the many customs and terms never even considered before and what a good place to start with non-other than the good old Kiddush cup!

The conclusion of course is most telling:

Will you drink?

Are you ready to accept that restoration plan? Will you share the covenant meal with your brethren as a memorial of the renewed covenant? Do you recognize that Yeshua proclaimed and shed his own blood to restore God’s covenant, and it has always been the plan of our Father? Are you eager to join with our brothers and sisters of Judah in the full knowledge and faith established from the beginning by God? Are you ready to drink the Kiddush Cup? Are you preparing for a covenant meal (marriage supper of the Lamb) with Him?

I will take the cup of salvation, and call upon the name of the Lord. (Psalm 116:13)

“Behold, I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears My voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and dine with him, and he with Me.” (Rev 3:20)

The most hurtful thing to a Jewish person is the notion that the above hijacking and repackaging of the Kiddush Cup is “with our brothers and sisters of Judah in the full knowledge and faith established from the beginning by God”. Well no it is not….. The Torah refers to two requirements concerning Shabbat – to “keep it” and to “remember it” (shamor and zakhor). Jewish law requires that Shabbat be observed in two respects. One must “keep it” by refraining from thirty-nine forbidden activities, and one must “remember it” by making specialKiddush2 copy arrangements for the day, and specifically through the Kiddush ceremony. Reciting Kiddush before the meal on the eve of Shabbat[2] and Jewish holidays is thus a commandment from the Torah (as it is explained by the Oral Torah). Reciting Kiddush before the morning[3] meal on Shabbat and holidays is a requirement of rabbinic origin.

On a weekly basis the Kiddush cup is linked to the sanctification of the Sabbath and the Sabbath’s link to the creation of the world and Exodus of Israel from Egypt. On the annual festivals is a modified Kiddush when we recall on Passover: the Festival of Matzos, the time of our freedom, on Shavuot: the Festival of Weeks, the time of the giving of our Torah, on Sukkot: the Festival of Succos, the time of our happiness in booths and on Shemini Atzeret/Simchat Torah: the eighth day, the Festival of Assembly, the time of our happiness. On these festivals we mention how G-d has chosen us from all the nations, and elevated us above all tongues and sanctified us with His commandments.

As a Jewish person I am mindful of how Kiddush, the bread and a family meal on Shabbat reminds me of the human effort to grow grapes and to make bread. How miraculously bread was provided in the desert as ‘manna’ and how simultaneously we realize its not by our own efforts (which do in actual fact count) alone but our miraculous existence as a people which we celebrate together each week and on each festival.

Nowhere is it intimated in the use of the Kiddush cup that a messiah is involved or that a messiah is part of a process of human substitutionary atonement as signified by the so called “Lord’s Supper[4]” and its symbolism. In fact Kiddush may be said on either white or red wine and/ or grape juice. In contrast we have the vile words of jesus himself:

“Then Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Except you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink His blood, you have no life in you. Whoever eats My flesh and drinks My blood has eternal life, and I will raise him up at the last day. For My flesh is meat, indeed, and My blood is drink indeed. He that eats My flesh, and drinks My blood, dwells in Me, and I in him.” John 6:53-56.

Blood2The vile prospect of association with the ghoulish imagery of blood “red” wine, human sacrifice, death, torture and the Kiddush cup is abhorrent to the testimony of the custom and practice of Jews and Judaism at least for the reasons that the Torah itself forbids human sacrifice and the consumption of blood.  What a travesty and sacrilege of the beautiful custom of Kiddush which makes holy, which signifies freedom, which signifies our acceptance of G-d’s gift of rest and which celebrates life?!

[1] Conversion of Jews to what is after all a brand of ‘Christianity’ known as “messianic Judaism”.

[2] The sixth day. And the heavens and the earth and all that filled them were complete. And on the seventh day God completed the labor He had performed, and He refrained on the seventh day from all the labor which He had performed. And God blessed the seventh day and He sanctified it, for He then refrained from all his labor – from the act of creation that God had performed…. Permit me, distinguished ones, rabbis, guests and colleagues:…Blessed are You, the Lord our God, King of the Universe, Creator of the fruit of the vine. (Amen)….Blessed are You, Lord our God, King of the Universe, Who sanctified us with His commandments, and hoped for us, and with love and intent invested us with His sacred Sabbath, as a memorial to the deed of Creation. It is the first among the holy festivals, commemorating the exodus from Egypt. For You chose us, and sanctified us, out of all nations, and with love and intent You invested us with Your Holy Sabbath…..Blessed are You, Sanctifier of the Sabbath. (Amen)

[3] (And the Children of Israel shall observe the Shabbat, by establishing the Shabbat for their generations as an eternal covenant. Between Me and the Children of Israel it is an eternal sign, that [in] six days the LORD made the heavens and the earth, and on the seventh day He ceased from work and rested. (Exodus 31:16-17)……..(Remember the Shabbat day to sanctify it. Six days you shall labor and do all your work, but the seventh day is Shabbat for the LORD your God; you shall not do any work — you, your son and your daughter, your manservant and your maidservant, and your cattle, and the stranger who is in your gates. For [in] six days the LORD made the heavens, the earth, the sea, and all that is in them, and rested on the seventh day. Therefore the LORD blessed the Shabbat day and made it holy. (Exodus 20:7-10))

Attention, gentlemen, [rabbis, and my teachers]!….Blessed are You, LORD our God, King of the universe, who creates the fruit of the vine. (Amen)

[4] 27 Whoever, therefore, eats the bread or drinks the cup of the Lord in an unworthy manner will be answerable for the body and blood of the Lord. 28 Examine yourselves, and only then eat of the bread and drink of the cup. 29 For all who eat and drink without discerning the body, eat and drink judgment against themselves. 30 For this reason many of you are weak and ill, and some have died. 1 Cor 11


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