The roots of the Lord's supper.
A concordance of the expression "this is my body" gives the following results:
Mt 26:26 And as they were eating, Jesus took bread, and blessed it, and brake it, and gave it to the disciples, and said, Take, eat; this is my body.
Mr 14:22 And as they did eat, Jesus took bread, and blessed, and brake it, and gave to them, and said, Take, eat: this is my body.
Lu 22:19 And he took bread, and gave thanks, and brake it, and gave unto them, saying, This is my body which is given for you: this do in remembrance of me.
1Co 11:24 And when he had given thanks, he brake it, and said, Take, eat: this is my body, which is broken for you: this do in remembrance of me.
Notice there is no mention of this in the the prison epistles. In fact there is no mention whatever of the Lord's supper at all within the post acts epistles of Paul. Why?
The passage in 1 Corinthians takes us back to the gospels and from there to the passover. Lets look at the context of Matthew 26
17 ¶ Now the first day of the feast of unleavened bread the disciples came to Jesus, saying unto him, Where wilt thou that we prepare for thee to eat the passover?
18 And he said, Go into the city to such a man, and say unto him, The Master saith, My time is at hand; I will keep the passover at thy house with my disciples.
19 And the disciples did as Jesus had appointed them; and they made ready the passover.
20 Now when the even was come, he sat down with the twelve.
And as they were eating...the passover
The disciples were concerned about where the Lord was to eat the passover. After being given instructions of where to go and what to do He said to the disciples to tell the man "My time is at hand; I will keep the passover at thy house with my disciples", the disciples made ready the passover (26:19) and the Lord sat down with the twelve. In verse 21 "As they did eat.." the lord raises the issue of Judas and his betrayal. In Verse 26 "And as they were eating..." eating what? The context tells us that this is the passover. So the Lord's supper is intimately connected with the passover.
To whom was given the passover?
Le 23:5 In the fourteenth day of the first month at even is the LORD’S passover.
Nu 9:2 Let the children of Israel also keep the passover at his appointed season.
It is quite clear that we are NOT Israel! The only way we as Gentiles could take part in this is if we were under the Acts administration graft unnaturally into the Olive of Israel to provoke the tree to fruitfulness. The problem of course is that the tree is NOT standing today, why? Because the axe hit the trunk at Acts 28.
For more on the passover and the Lord's supper including a discussion of timing of the Lord's death in relation to the passover from a messianic jewish perspective see http://derek4messiah.wordpress.com/2009/03/09/passover-and-the-last-supper-part-1/
The new covenant
Notice the context of 1Cor 11:25
25 (AV) After the same manner also he took the cup, when he had supped, saying, This cup is the new testament in my blood: this do ye, as oft as ye drink it, in remembrance of me.
25 (TR) ωσαυτως και το ποτηριον μετα το δειπνησαι λεγων τουτο το ποτηριον η καινη διαθηκη εστιν εν τω εμω αιματι τουτο ποιειτε οσακις αν πινητε εις την εμην αναμνησιν
Notice that "the new testament" here is the translation of η καινη διαθηκη, the new covenant! Are we as Gentiles in THIS age, the age that came into existance after Israel's judgment in Acts 28, put in a relationship with Israel such that we partake once again of her spiritual things Rom. 15:27? There of course is no way that we could after the dismissal of Acts 28 -- to resurrect the context of Acts by assuming a mid-acts beginning to the church of whom Christ is head would be to place us into second place to the Jews. The mystery of Eph 3 and Col 1 takes us outside of the promises given to Israel and translates us into the kingdom of his dear son where the position and hope we have was "hid in God".
Paul had two ministries
The first ministry was to the Jew first and was in compliance with the prophets of Israel and the second was where "the mystery" was revealed after the dismissal of Israel. The second ministry was based on this new revelation given to PAul the prisoner. It is here that the mid-acts position comes undone.
Do you think the new covenant changed from Jeremiah to Paul? Read below and the surrounding context!
Jer 31:31 Behold, the days come, saith the LORD, that I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel, and with the house of Judah:
Heb 8:8 For finding fault with them, he saith, Behold, the days come, saith the Lord, when I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and with the house of Judah:
Heb 8:13 In that he saith, A new covenant, he hath made the first old. Now that which decayeth and waxeth old is ready to vanish away.
Heb 12:24 And to Jesus the mediator of the new covenant, and to the blood of sprinkling, that speaketh better things than that of Abel.
Where is "the Mystery" here? All is promised, prophesied and a part of God's revelation and economy to do with ISRAEL!
A mid-Acts position will put us into the acts economy and further into the Jew first dispensation of Paul's acts ministry. But time has moved on and Acts 28 rolled around. Why should the child of God knowingly place him or herself under an economy which is outdated.
We should not partake of it -- it is confusion to do so, lets us each one clarify the dispensation given to PAul the prisoner