Christian authors primarily interpreted the liturgical uses of bread mentioned in the OT in a typological sense. The twelve pieces of showbread Lev 24:5-9; cf., DBS 6, 973ff. prefigured the eucharistic bread Trad. ap. 41; Jerome., In Tit. 1,8-9; Cyr. of Alex., Jo. IV, 4, which now replaces them Cyr. of Jer., Cat. 22,5, and the Word that came down from heaven Eus., Ps. 33,6-8. For Origen, at the level of the literal sense, the showbread represented the twelve tribes of Israel, which should have been a memorial and an intercession before the Lord, but, he observes, according to the greatness of the mystery, the sole memorial that makes God propitious to human beings is that bread of which Christ speaks when instituting the Eucharist, the one who is the bread come down from heaven and the giver of life and the showbread because God set him forth as a propitiation through faith in his blood Hom. 13,3 in Lev.. Richmond Map Tourist Attractions For some authors, moreover, the showbread represents the word of the twelve apostles Orig., Hom. 9,4 in Ex.; Procop. of Gaza, Lev.: PG 87, 779ff. or the twelve months of the year Jerome, Ep. 64,9. Even the unleavened bread which the Hebrews ate during the Exodus Ex 12:8 and subsequently every year during the feast of unleavened bread Ex 13:5-10 undergoes a typological interpretation in relation to the Eucharist see especially Ephrem, Hymns on the Unleavened Bread 6,1-6; 17,5; 19,1-3; see also Hymns. cruc. 2,5. These were also understood in a moral sense in reference to the elimination of sin Greg. Nyss., V. Mos. II, 126; Chromat., Serm. 17A; Greg. Great., In evang. hom. 22,8. Finally, the bread offered by Melchizedek was commonly interpreted as a figure of the Eucharist Gen 14:18 Clem. Alex., Strom. IV, 25,161,3; see: J.L. Ska, Melchisdech: DSp 10, 969-972.
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