• The Table of the Lord: Paul's Eucharistic Use of Malachi in 1 Corinthians 10:21

    Jon Jordan (see profile)
    Biblical Studies
    Paul, the Apostle, Saint, Bible. New Testament, Bible. Old Testament
    Item Type:
    Conference paper
    Conf. Title:
    Paul & Judaism
    Conf. Org.:
    Houston Baptist University
    Conf. Loc.:
    Houston, TX
    Conf. Date:
    March, 2014
    Apostle Paul, Eucharist, Malachi, New Testament, Old Testament
    Permanent URL:
    Paul is alone among New Testament authors in using LXX Malachi’s τραπέζης κυρίου (trapeza kyriou, table of the Lord). In bringing his lengthy section on Christian freedom to a close, Paul addresses a specific concern of the Corinthian church: the eating of meat sacrificed to pagan idols. In 1 Cor 10:14–22 we see Paul use τραπέζης κυρίου and other Eucharistic language to frame the celebration of the Lord’s Supper as the ideal counter-example to this Corinthian practice. Why, in this setting, would Paul make use of Malachi’s phrase? What does τραπέζης κυρίου communicate to Paul’s audience that other Eucharistic language can not? This paper will propose that Paul’s use of Malachi’s τραπέζης κυρίου (trapezēs kyriou) allows him to speak of the Eucharist in sacrificial terms and provides later Christian writers a New Testament precedent for using Malachi in a Eucharistic sense. It will be argued (1) that Paul certainly has Malachi’s disputation with the Levitical priest in mind when he uses τραπέζης κυρίου (trapezēs kyriou) in 1 Cor 10:21, (2) that the context of Malachi’s own use of τραπέζης κυρίου (trapezēs kyriou) provides a vision of a future, sacrificial worship of Yahweh by “the nations,” and (3) that Paul intends for these sacrificial overtones to be heard in his use of the Eucharist as a counter-example to the consummation of idol meat.
    Last Updated:
    7 years ago
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