Jesus and the Jewish Roots of the Eucharist: Unlocking the Secrets to the Last Supper
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Doubleday Religion / 2011 / Hardcover

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Jesus and the Jewish Roots of the Eucharist: Unlocking the Secrets to the Last Supper

Doubleday Religion / 2011 / Hardcover

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In Stock
Stock No: WW531849

Product Description

Inspiring and informative, Jesus and the Jewish Roots of the Eucharist is a groundbreaking work that is sure to illuminate one of the greatest mysteries of the Christian faith: the mystery of Jesus' presence in "the breaking of the bread."

Product Information

Format: Hardcover
Number of Pages: 256
Vendor: Doubleday Religion
Publication Date: 2011
ISBN: 0385531842
ISBN-13: 9780385531849

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Publisher's Description

In recent years, Christians everywhere are rediscovering the Jewish roots of their faith.

Every year at Easter time, many believers now celebrate Passover meals (known as Seders) seeking to understand exactly what happened at Jesus’ final Passover, the night before he was crucified.
Jesus and the Jewish Roots of the Eucharist shines fresh light on the Last Supper by looking at it through Jewish eyes. Using his in-depth knowledge of the Bible and ancient Judaism, Dr. Brant Pitre answers questions such as: What was the Passover like at the time of Jesus? What were the Jewish hopes for the Messiah? What was Jesus’ purpose in instituting the Eucharist during the feast of Passover? And, most important of all, what did Jesus mean when he said, "This is my body… This is my blood"?

To answer these questions, Pitre explores ancient Jewish beliefs about the Passover of the Messiah, the miraculous Manna from heaven, and the mysterious Bread of the Presence. As he shows, these three keys—the Passover, the Manna, and the Bread of the Presence—have the power to unlock the original meaning of the Eucharistic words of Jesus. Along the way, Pitre also explains how Jesus united the Last Supper to his death on Good Friday and his Resurrection on Easter Sunday.           

Inspiring and informative, Jesus and the Jewish Roots of the Eucharist is a groundbreaking work that is sure to illuminate one of the greatest mysteries of the Christian faith: the mystery of Jesus’ presence in "the breaking of the bread."

Author Bio

BRANT PITRE is a professor of sacred Scripture at Notre Dame Seminary in New Orleans, Louisiana. He is the author of Jesus the Bridegroom. Dr. Pitre is an extremely enthusiastic and highly sought-after speaker who lectures regularly across the United States. He has produced dozens of Bible studies on both CD and DVD, in which he explores the biblical roots of the Catholic faith. He has also appeared on a number of Catholic radio and television shows, such as Catholic Answers Live and EWTN. He currently lives in Louisiana with his wife, Elizabeth, and their five young children.

Editorial Reviews

"In the Mass – in the 'blood of the new and everlasting covenant' – Christ fulfills the rites of the old covenant. This beautiful book by Dr. Brant Pitre shows us that fulfillment in loving detail. We gain an appreciation of what was, so that we can see, ever more clearly, what 'is now and ever shall be.' Clear, profound and practical – you do not want to miss this book."
– Dr. Scott Hahn, author of The Lamb’s Supper and Signs of Life
"In Jesus and the Jewish Roots of the Eucharist Brant Pitre pairs together the Jewish Scriptures and the Jewish tradition to frame the actions of Jesus at the Last Supper, and to provide a fresh look at the heart of Christian practice—the Eucharist. By taking us back to the Jewish roots of our faith, Pitre gives us a powerful lens through which to see anew the bread of the presence, the manna, the Last Supper, and ultimately the meaning of Christian Eucharist. Pitre’s mastery of Scripture and the Jewish traditions makes him the perfect guide for anyone seeking to understand the climax of Jesus’ ministry, the Last Supper and the first Eucharist."
– Dr. Tim Gray, President of the Augustine Institute

"For Christians, it is impossible to understand ourselves apart from Christ. And here, we see how we cannot truly realize the richness of the Eucharist apart from its meaning in light of the Jewish covenant with God. What an exquisite view of the Eucharist as a personal encounter with Christ and the first Eucharist as a humanity-wide encounter with God!"
– Carl A. Anderson, Supreme Knight of the Knights of Columbus and the New York Times bestselling author of Our Lady of Guadalupe

"With Jesus and the Jewish Roots of the Eucharist Brant Pitre puts the Eucharistic Christ into thrilling context by examining the realities of Jewish life in the first century. Believers and non-believers alike will better-appreciate the rich cultural, traditional and scriptural wells from which Eucharistic understanding has been drawn and developed since Jesus of Nazareth first proclaimed, ’my flesh is real food, and my body real drink.’"
– Elizabeth Scalia, Managing Editor (Catholic) at and the blogger known as The Anchoress

"Captivating, clear and compelling, this book shows how the Eucharist is at the heart of Jesus’ messianic mission. After guiding readers through ancient Jewish hopes for a new Exodus, a new Passover, a new manna and a new temple, Pitre demonstrates step-by-step how Jesus’ institution of the Eucharist fulfills those eschatological expectations. This book is a must read for anyone studying the Biblical foundations for the Eucharist."
– Edward Sri, Provost of the Augustine Institute and author of 
Men, Women and the Mystery of Love

"Rare is the book that demands to be read by beginners and scholars alike, but Brant Pitre has written such a book, combining sparkling prose with profound insight into Scripture's meanings and contexts. Guided by Pitre, we enter into the ancient Israelite prophetic expectation of the fulfillment of the original Exodus through a new Passover, new manna, new priest-king, and new Temple. Pitre shows us how age-old controversies over the Eucharist as sacrifice, meal, and real presence are illumined by Jesus in the Gospels. This exciting and inspiring book fills a major gap in biblical studies."
– Matthew Levering, Professor of Theology, University of Dayton, and author of Sacrifice and Community: Jewish Offering and Christian Eucharist

Product Reviews

3.7 Stars Out Of 5
3.7 out of 5
3 out Of 5
(3 out of 5)
3 out Of 5
(3 out of 5)
Meets Expectations:
3 out Of 5
(3 out of 5)
of customers would recommend this product to a friend.
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  1. Mike
    Age: 25-34
    Gender: male
    5 Stars Out Of 5
    Must read for anyone struggling with real presence
    June 4, 2013
    Age: 25-34
    Gender: male
    Quality: 5
    Value: 5
    Meets Expectations: 5
    This book was a super easy read and a very valuable source of information for anyone who is struggling to understand the true presence or anyone who is looking to further understand the true presence in the Eucharist.

    goes over ancient Judaism and how it all points to the real presence, cites many sources and present in an easy to understand fashion.

    I read the persons one star review, I can't help but notice after reading his review a severe bias, which encouraged me to right this review - I read this book which I check out at Westminster seminary, so good I am buying - which is why I came here in the first place!

    highly recommend
  2. JCRules1
    Columbus OH
    Age: 25-34
    Gender: male
    5 Stars Out Of 5
    The previous review is very BIASED
    August 17, 2011
    Columbus OH
    Age: 25-34
    Gender: male
    I am writing this review to offset the previous reviewers biased and dishonest review of 1 star for this book.

    What the reviewer is failing to understand is that for the first 16 centuries ALL Christians together believed in the real presence of Christ in the Eucharist(transubstantiation). And then the reformation came along and Luther although rejected transubstantiation, he gave his own theology on this called consubstantiation which others such as Calvin reduced the Eucharist down to a symbolic reference(having no supernatural graces or presence of Christ)...Just because the interpretation of certain verses does not fit with your 'personal interpretation', it does NOT change the belief of ALL the Christians before Protestantism came about. What the authors are trying to present is the interpretation of the Early Church fathers who were apostles of the apostles and there is enough writings that date back to the 1st, 2nd and 3rd century that support their point of view. The bible was NOT put together until almost 390AD and all that was there was over a 200 books from which the New testament as we know it today was derived(thanks to the Early church fathers and the Church that was guided by the holy spirit)...The people who put the bible together testify the case for transubstantiation......History stands as a testimony to this and every true Christian for the first 1600 years of Christian history will stand testimony for this. Where in the bible does it say that the Christians in the first 1600 years will look at the Eucharist as the true body of Christ and then a guy named Calvin will come along and 'save' Christianity and change the way people look at the Eucharist as being just symbolic? It is in fact you who will need to give evidence to prove your theology...The authors of this book are presenting their book absolutely in line with what history tells us and that is the real presence of Jesus in the Eucharist.

    For people who dont know history what this means, please do some reading. This will benefit no matter which doctrines you or your church follows. May God bless you.
  3. Debbie from ChristFocus
    Harrison, AR
    Age: 35-44
    Gender: female
    1 Stars Out Of 5
    Arguments not properly supported
    February 15, 2011
    Debbie from ChristFocus
    Harrison, AR
    Age: 35-44
    Gender: female
    Quality: 1
    Value: 1
    Meets Expectations: 1
    "Jesus and the Jewish Roots of the Eucharist" sets out to prove that the bread and wine in the Eucharist/Communion are literally Jesus' flesh and blood. The author stated that he would use the Bible and ancient Jewish sources to prove that's how the Jews would have understood it. However, despite all the quotes, the author's core arguments used his assumptions about the Eucharist to "prove" his assumptions.

    For example, one core argument was that eating the Passover lamb was necessary during the original Passover or the firstborn son would have died even if the lamb's blood was on the doorpost. To quote from page 56, "If they took the lamb, sacrificed the lamb, spread the blood of the lamb, but did not eat the lamb, what would have been the result? Well, the Book of Exodus does not say. But it's a good guess that when they awoke the next morning, their firstborn son would be dead."

    So he admits he can't prove this idea using the Bible. (In fact, Exodus 12:13, 22-23 makes it clear that the only requirement for having the house "passed over" was the blood on the door frame.) He also didn't quote a single ancient source that said if someone in the family--or even just the firstborn--didn't eat the lamb, then the firstborn would die. So he bases his core argument on what he calls "a good guess" but which actually contradicts Scripture. Many of his arguments had this same flaw.

    One of his stronger arguments could have been John 6:55. His argument (from page 101) is, "It is widely recognized by New Testament scholars--Protestant and Catholic alike--that Jesus is speaking here [in John 6:48-59] about the Eucharistic food and drink that he will give the disciples at the Last Supper....any attempt to insist that Jesus was not speaking about what he would do at the Last Supper here is a weak case of special pleading." So his argument is "don't question what I'm saying, the authorities back me up." He didn't even quote an ancient source that supported his view.

    But read the chapter for yourself. In John 6:32-59 and during the Last Supper, Jesus is talking about his death and resurrection. Yes, Jesus' words in both places have similarities, but that's because they refer to the same event. The author gave no evidence that Jesus meant his speech in John 6:48-59 as a commentary on how to understand the yet-to-happen Last Supper.

    The author's claim that Protestant scholars agree with his claim is untrue. For example, from "Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible" by Jamieson, Fausset and Brown, "...our Lord explicitly introduces His sacrificial death--for only rationalists can doubt this not only as that which constitutes Him the Bread of life to men, but as THAT very element IN HIM WHICH POSSESSES THE LIFE-GIVING VIRTUE."

    And commenting on John 6:53-58, "He says they must not only 'eat His flesh' but 'drink His blood,' which could not but suggest the idea of His death--implied in the separation of one's flesh from his blood. And as He had already hinted that it was to be something very different from a natural death, saying, 'My flesh I will give for the life of the world' ( John 6:51 ), it must have been pretty plain to candid hearers that He meant something above the gross idea which the bare terms expressed. And farther, when He added that they 'had no life in them unless they thus ate and drank,' it was impossible they should think He meant that the temporal life they were then living was dependent on their eating and drinking, in this gross sense, His flesh and blood."

    Finally, some of the information Pitre used to support his position could equally support the Protestant view. This is true for the Scripture he quoted, especially when it's read in full context or along with other verses that he failed to quoted.

    So I wouldn't recommend this book since his arguments weren't properly supported.

    I received this book as a review copy from the publisher.
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