Jesus and the Jewish Roots of the Eucharist: A New Book by Brant Pitre

In Jesus and the Jewish Roots of the Eucharist: Unlocking the Secrets of the Last Supper, Bible scholar Brant Pitre explores the ancient Hebrew traditions that influenced and defined the Catholic sacrament of the Eucharist.

Pitre shines new light on the Last Supper by looking at it through Jewish eyes. Using his in-depth knowledge of the Bible and Jewish traditions, Pitre answers questions such as:

  1. What was the Passover like at the time of Jesus?
  2. What were the Jewish hopes for the Messiah?
  3. What was Jesus' purpose in instituting the Eucharist during the feast of Passover?
  4. 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 Presence—have the power to unlock the original meaning of the Eucharistic words of Jesus.

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


About the Author

Brant PitreBrant Pitre is a professor of sacred scripture at Notre Dame Seminary in New Orleans, Louisiana. He received his Ph.D. in New Testament and ancient Judaism from the University of Notre Dame, Indiana. He travels widely to speak about the Eucharist and its origins in ancient Hebrew tradition and he is the author of Jesus, the Tribulation, and the End of the Exile(Baker Academic, 2005). More information on his work can be found at


"In the Mass—in the 'blood of the new and everlasting covenant'—Christ fulfills the rites of the old covenant. This beautiful book by 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." ~ Scott Hahn, author of The Lamb's Last Supper

"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

Visit the Patheos Book Club for more resources—including reviews and an excerpt—from Jesus and the Jewish Roots of the Eucharist.

2/15/2011 5:00:00 AM
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