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I heard a story about a little girl who attended ďbig churchĒ for the first time on a Sunday morning when the congregation was observing the Lordís Supper. When the elements were served, she was overheard saying to her mother in a loud whisper, ďThe snack we get in the nursery is much better. And we get a lot more juice.Ē
Clearly, that little girl didnít understand the significance of the observance; and, of course, we cannot blame her - she needed to be taught to appreciate the Lordís Supper. In fact, each of us, as followers of Christ needs to be taught how to better appreciate this observance that we participate in so regularly.
The fact is, that as we consider this passage, where we read of our Savior instituting this ordinance, we see that the observance of Communion testifies to three significant truths.
1. It testifies to the necessity of Christís death - v. 28
The cup reminds us of the blood of Christ, which was shed so that we might have forgiveness of sin.
ď[In fact] under the Law almost everything is purified by means of blood, and without the shedding of blood there is neither release from sin and its guilt and the remission of the due and merited punishment for sins.Ē - Hebrews 9:22 (Amplified)
Suppose I were to rob a bank of $55,000. A hidden camera takes movies of me doing it and the teller and the other eye witnesses identify me as the culprit. When I am brought before the judge he asks, "How do you plead?" I am guilty and the evidence is undeniable and so I respond, "I am guilty, your Honor." He then sentences me to five years in prison for armed bank robbery.
Suppose I were to say to him, "Judge, I am sorry that I robbed the bank. You have the money back and no one was hurt. I promise you I will never rob another bank if you will just let me go."
Would the judge be just if he let me go? No. He has a standard of justice that must be satisfied. If judges let bank robbers off simply because they said they were sorry and promised not to rob any more banks, then there is not a bank in the land that would be safe.
God is much more just than any human judge. And he cannot simply excuse our sin. No, a penalty must be paid to satisfy the demands of the Law, and that is what God did for us through the person of Jesus Christ.
ďFor God presented Jesus as the sacrifice for sin. People are made right with God when they believe that Jesus sacrificed his life, shedding his blood.Ē - Romans 3:25 (NLT)
Because of Christís sacrifice on our behalf, we can experience forgiveness of our sin and enter into a personal relationship with God which will one day lead us to be with Him forever in heaven.
ďChrist suffered for our sins once for all time. He never sinned, but he died for sinners to bring you safely home to God.Ē - 1 Peter 3:18 (NLT)
You can take the human predicament and make an equation out of it. Manís sinfulness plus Godís justice can equal only one thing: eternal Hell for man (Manís Sinfulness + Godís Justice = Eternal Hell).
That is what we deserve. However, there is another factor in the equation. If we add to manís sinfulness and Godís justice the factor of Godís love, again one answer is possible: the cross of Christ (Manís Sinfulness + Godís Justice + Godís Love = The Cross of Christ). Because God loved his people
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