The phrase ” Madatum novum do vobis ” is Latin for “A new commandment I give to you.” The cover design depicts a wafer over a water basin from which a towel flows. This image encourages us to remember the elements surrounding the Last Supper. On the night Jesus was betrayed Jesus establishes the Eucharist, which commemorate His actions as delivering the world from its bondage to sin. Jesus washed His disciples’ feet as an example of His love for the disciples and as a symbol of the new commandment to love one another. The basin of water reminds us of both Jesus’ example of love towards us, as well as our baptism, in which we repent of our sins and are washed anew. In addition, towel is symbolic of the servant’s heart with which Jesus led. The tear in the cloth points towards the coming events of Good Friday when Christ dies and the curtain in the temple is torn in two.
Eric Palmquist is an ordained Covenant minister and the director of ministry operations for Newport Covenant Church in Bellevue, Washington. He also edits the Expressions column for the Covenant Companion.