- The Return of the Messiah
Blessings After the Meal – The Third Cup (Redemption).
A third cup of wine is filled and Grace is recited. After the Grace the blessing over wine is recited. Then we drink the third cup of wine while reclining. We fill the cup of Elijah and our own cups with wine. We open the door and recite the passage which is an invitation to the Prophet Elijah, the harbinger of the coming of Ha-Mashiach, our righteous Messiah. The Seder Leader calls out Barech. After eating the Afikomen, we pour the third cup of wine (the Cup of Redemption) and give thanks to the Eternal One for the fellowship and the meal we have shared. We acknowledge that the Creator is the One who provides for our physical and spiritual sustenance. Read Psalm 126 at this time. The full grace said after meals, called Birkat Hamazon, is a rather long prayer that involves several blessings (see a good Haggadah for the entire recitation). An alternative, shorter version is provided here (it is actually only the first part of the entire blessing):
“Blessed are You, Adonai Eloheinu King of the universe, Who nourishes the whole world in goodness, with grace, kindness, and compassion. You give bread to all flesh, for Your mercy endures forever. And through Your great goodness we have never lacked, nor will we lack food forever, for the sake of Your great Name. For You are the God who nourishes and sustains all, and does good to all, and prepares food for all Your creatures which You created. Blessed are You, Adonai, Who nourishes all.” Amen.
The Third Cup (Redemption):
We now make ourselves ready to partake of the third cup, the Cup of Redemption. Before drinking, we recite:
“Blessed are you, Adonai Eloheinu, King of the universe, Creator of the fruit of the vine.”
ברוך אתה, אדוני אלוהינו, מלך העולם, בורא פרי הגפן.פ
“Baruch atah, Adonai Eloheinu, melech ha’olam, Borei p’ri hagafen.”
In the Brit Chadashah (New Covenant) we learn that Messiah took the bread and wine “after” the Pesach supper” and with the raising of the Cup of Redemption He said, “This cup is the Brit Chadashah (New Covenant) in my blood, which is shed for you.” The Cup of Redemption commemorates the shed blood of the Messiah our Korban Pesach. The sacrifice of the life of the Suffering Messiah is the fulfillment of the witness of the innocent lamb. For the talmidin of the Messiah this cup symbolizes our participation in the ketubah (marriage contract) of the Brit Chadashah. The groom (chatan) signified His pledge by sharing a cup of wine with His bride (kallah). The observance of Pesach, therefore, is a means of our bearing witness to our ‘union’ with the Messiah and to the heavenly Father who sent Him to us to be our Kinsman Redeemer, High Priest, and King forever.
The Return of the Messiah:
The Messiah will return from heaven to earth a second time but not this time as the Suffering Messiah. He will return in glory to Israel as the Conqueriing Messiah ben David. This is why in His first appearance the Messiah said He would not drink the fourth cup, the Cup of Restoration. Messiah knew the world was not ready for Him to establish the kingdom of heaven on earth at the time of His last observance of the Passover Supper. He knew at that time that He would return a second time. Therefore He promised His disciples that He would drink the Cup of Restoration with them in the future when He would return in triumph accompanied by the Shekinah glory cloud and establish the Kingdom of heaven on earth (i.e. when “all Israel shall be saved“).