Summary: Communion Service - How we are healed by his stripes
Text: Isaiah 53:4-6
MP: Communion is nothing but a scar that will be healed.
1. Every monument tells a story
a. Iwo Jima
b. Washington Monument
2. Scars are stories
a. Two kinds of Scars
i. Scars from surgery (healing)
ii. Scars from wounds (wounds/ injury)
b. Rachel’s scar
3. Communion is a story of Jesus’ love
a. Reminder of what Jesus went through
b. It was for our healing
c. But it was also the wound of a transgressor
d. Willingly chosen because he loved us
On Memorial Day, many people will often visit the monuments.
Some monuments are grand imposing structures like the WWII memorial. Others are more intimate like the wall that commemorates Vietnam. Some will bring back memories, some will actually heal.
But what kind of monument do we have to a Savior who made the ultimate sacrifice for us? Where can we go to have a reminder of the One who gave his life that we might live?
As Peter says, we Christians are living stones, and Christ is the cornerstone – the capstone that the builders rejected. Christ himself bears the marks of the battle waged on our behalf.
In our text this morning, we get the inside scoop on the dedication of the ultimate memorial: the memorial God himself choose to commemorate the battle for our eternal destiny – the story of the sacrifice that Jesus made on our behalf. If you have your Bible, I’d like you to turn with me to Isaiah 53:4-6. It reads:
Surely, he has borne our infirmities, and carried our diseases;
yet we accounted him stricken,
struck down by God,
But he was wounded for our transgressions,
crushed for our iniquities
Upon him was the punishment that made us whole,
And by his stripes we are healed.
All we like sheep have gone astray,
We have all turned to our own way.
And the LORD has laid on him the iniquity of us all.
That word – stripes, some translations will say bruises – either way, those stripes are our memorials. On this Memorial Day, I think we would be wise to contemplate the story and the sacrifice made on our behalf.
When I look at my left hand, I still see a small scar. I got that scar in high school – and it was actually a good friend who gave it to me.
I had snuck up on this girl, went ‘Boo!’ and she responded by digging her nails into my flesh. It wasn’t intended to be mean, but for the rest of my life, I will carry a reminder of that bad attempt of a joke.
Many women have much happier scars. Anyone who has a C-Section cannot look at their scar without thinking about the child who came through. It may be a wound, but it is a much happier one.
Scars are like that. They are reminders – memorials even – of the events of our lives. Surgeries, injuries, the stories of our lives literally incorporated in our flesh: they are physical manifestations of the things that have pierced our bodies. Each one tells a story. Some are happy, some are scary – but all have meaning for where we come from and where we are going.
This week, Susan and I got quite a scare. On Wednesday, Jonathan, Susan, and Rachel, were all awake before I was. Susan was working on a test, Rachel and Jonathan were playing right next to the computer.
Well, Susan didn’t realize that her bag was open, and you know Jonathan. It doesn’t take much. He reached into the bag, found a pair of scissors, and within just a few sections, Rachel cried out, “Jonathan almost cut me!” Right away, Susan looked, and realized that it wasn’t an “almost.” He didn’t touch himself, but Rachel had a pretty good slash across her arm.
Thankfully, no muscle was cut, but it was still pretty deep.
It’s still under that bandage, but we all know there is going to be a scar. For the rest of her life, Rachel will be able to look at her arm and think, “Surely she was wounded for Jonathan’s transgression.”
It isn’t fair, it isn’t nice, and it hurts. But since when has sin been any other way?
The communion bread we are about to take is a scar. It’s a commemoration of the sacrifice Jesus made for us. It may not
-> It reminds us of his presence
-> It covers our sin
-> It makes us whole
… The question is, will it just be a story, or will it be for our healing?
They’re looking for a named chiseled into some rock – on anything from a simple gravestone to the Vietnam Veterans Memorial Wall. The hope is that some chunk of granite will be a reminder of the sacrifices that their friends, family, or even people they didn’t know made on their behalf.