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There seems to be a distinction between what Christ tells the 12 disciples (26:20) in Matthew and Mark in contrast to Luke:

  • Matthew 26:26-28: "While they were eating, Jesus took some bread, and after a blessing, He broke it and gave it to the disciples, and said, 'Take, eat; this is My body.' 27And when He had taken a cup and given thanks, He gave it to them, saying, 'Drink from it, all of you; 28for this is My blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many for forgiveness of sins.'"

And here,

  • Mark 14:22-24: "While they were eating, He took some bread, and after a blessing He broke it, and gave it to them, and said, 'Take it; this is My body.' 23And when He had taken a cup and given thanks, He gave it to them, and they all drank from it. 24And He said to them, 'This is My blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many.'"

In Luke's Gospel, Christ explicitly states "do this in remembrance of Me":

  • Luke 22:19-20: "And when He had taken some bread and given thanks, He broke it and gave it to them, saying, 'This is My body which is given for you; do this in remembrance of Me.' 20And in the same way He took the cup after they had eaten, saying, 'This cup which is poured out for you is the new covenant in My blood.'" (cf. 1 Cor. 11:24-26).

Why do the words "do this in remembrance of Me" not appear in the first two Gospels? Is this not a direct command by Christ? This is complicated by the fact that Paul appears to echo the same sentiments as Luke in his First Letter to the Corinthians:

  • 1 Corinthians 11:24-25: "[And] when [Christ] had given thanks, He broke it and said, 'This is My body, which is for you; do this in remembrance of Me.' 25In the same way He took the cup also after supper, saying, 'This cup is the new covenant in My blood; do this, as often as you drink it, in remembrance of Me.'"

How do we properly interpret the differences in these 4 passages?

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  • Luke and Paul were sometimes companions (Colossians 4:14; 2 Timothy 4:11); as such, Paul was probably among the ones he consulted when writing his Gospel (Luke 1:1-4).
    – Lucian
    Jul 6 at 6:48
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The OP has [perfectly illustrated the value for four Gospel accounts. Some include one detail that another omits. There are other differences between these accounts as well. For example:

  • Matthew 26:23, 24 has Jesus saying, "“The one who has dipped his hand into the bowl with Me will betray Me. The Son of Man will go just as it is written about Him, but woe to that man by whom He is betrayed. It would be better for him if he had not been born.” Luke records something quite different.
  • Matthew 26:28 has Jesus saying, "This is My blood of the covenant". However, Luke 22:20 has Jesus saying, "This cup is the new covenant in My blood, which is poured out for you."

... and so forth. There are many more. This is simply evidence that the accounts we have are honest accounts in the absence of collusion - collusion and collaboration might make them monolithic and so unreliable testimony of the events which occurred.

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  • No doubt Luke and Paul interacted far closer than did the other gospel writers, it would be expected that these two would have common emphasis as they would have discussed their interactions around the person of Jesus especially Luke with eye witnesses and found certain details necessary to mention. Paul inevitably would include the details he heard from Luke Jul 6 at 4:08
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A possible scribal addition to insert the communion tradition as an imperative, which some early Churches may have been voluntarily imitating. The scribes were prone to add clarification notes (just like the modern paraphrase Bible versions which add their own commentary) for reasons like harmonization with the other parallel texts, and for liturgical reasons; it is possible that some scribe in second or third century thought to conform to the Paul's reference into Luke when the scribe did not have access to the other Gospels. The NET translation note on Luke 22:19 "Then he took bread, and after giving thanks he broke it and gave it to them, saying, “This is my body49 which is given for you. Do this in remembrance of me.”

tc Some important Western mss (D it) lack the words from this point to the end of v. 20. However, the authenticity of these verses is very likely. The inclusion of the second cup is the harder reading, since it differs from Matt 26:26-29 and Mark 14:22-25, and it has much better ms support. It is thus easier to explain the shorter reading as a scribal accident or misunderstanding. Further discussion of this complicated problem (the most difficult in Luke) can be found in TCGNT 148-50.

From the book: A Student's Guide in Textual Criticism by Bruce Terry:

Luke 22:19-20: TEXT: "'This is my body which is given for you. Keep doing this in memory of me.' ·And in a similar way [he took] the cup after supper, saying, 'This cup [is] the new covenant in my blood, which is poured out for you. ·But behold, the hand of the one betraying me'"
EVIDENCE: p75 S A B C K L T(vid) W X Delta Theta Pi Psi f1 f13 565 700 892 1010 1241 Byz Lect some lat vg syr(s) (vv. 19,20a,17,20b,18) syr(p) (omit vv. 17-18) syr(h,pal) cop
TRANSLATIONS: KJV ASV RSV1n RSV2 NASV NIV NEBn TEV
RANK: C there is considerable degree of doubt about the text.
NOTES: "'This is my body. But behold, the hand of the one betraying me'" EVIDENCE: D some lat {two lat syr(c) (v. 19 before v. 17)}
TRANSLATIONS: ASVn RSV1 RSV2n NASVn NEB TEVn
COMMENTS: The order of cup--bread--cup for the last supper gave problems to several copyists who did not realize that the first cup was part of the passover meal and not part of the institution of the Lord's Supper. They solved this problem either by omitting verses 19b-20 or verses 17-18. Two Latin manuscripts and two Syrian texts also rearranged the text to have the bread first.

and on 1 Corinthians 11:24:

TEXT: "This is my body which is for pl you." EVIDENCE: p46 S* A B C* 33 1739* TRANSLATIONS: ASV RSV NASV NIV NEB TEV
RANK: B there is some degree of doubt about the text
NOTES: "This is my body which is broken for pl you." EVIDENCE: Sc C3 Db,c G K P Psi 81 104 614 630 1241 1739margin 1881 2495 Byz Lect three lat syr(p,h) TRANSLATIONS: KJV ASVn RSVn NASVn
OTHER: "This is my body which is shattered for plyou." EVIDENCE: D*
OTHER: "This is my body which is given for plyou." EVIDENCE: most lat vg cop
COMMENTS: The reading "given for" was borrowed by copyists from the parallel passage in Luke 22:19. Probably the reading "broken for" was taken from the first part of the verse that says of the bread: "he broke [it]."

There are apologetical reasons given in favor of the argument that the early scribe removed the texts and the longer reading was original, but those are desperate conjectures like saying it was caused by Hellenistic influences and that the omission is especially indicative of the mystery cults that preserve knowledge of the most sacred practices (especially ritualistic) for only the initiated. Similarly, as the Lord's Prayer was inextricably tied to the rituals of baptism and the Lord's Supper from the earliest of times, there is evidence that it too fell under the disciplina arcani as practiced by some Christian groups hence they enforced secrecy of the divine sacraments. Nobody would omit a text to conform to another text, but only add in the one he thinks fit, to add warrant to a belief or tradition. The only reason a scribe would remove a reading is for finding it problematic, confusing or embarrassing, and there is nothing of such thing present in the text. The shorter reading is usually assumed the original.

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