One of the most fundamental plot details of the narrative of the gospels is that Jesus held a final ritual meal with his disciples in the night hours before he was betrayed, tried and crucified. That final meal was the beginning of the eucharist rite that is celebrated in most churches in some form ever since.
But not all early Christian communities seemed to have believed this origin-story about this ritual. It seems to me that there is some reason to think that some Christians actually thought Jesus instituted this last supper after his resurrection. It was not a memorial of his death, or of his body, but a thanksgiving meal and recollection that he had come (if only for a short time) in the flesh.
The subversive point to this exploration is, of course, how to explain the types of divergences such as these in the extant early Christian evidence. Are they best explained by the historical Jesus/gospel narrative or some other model? Continue reading “Was the Last Supper/Eucharist “originally given” by Jesus AFTER his resurrection?”