Summary: An explanation of what the Lord's Supper is, where it derived from, and how we are told to partake of it today. It includes why young children should not partake, nor anyone who has sin in their hearts.
Today is the first Sunday of the month, and this is the Sunday which we will observe the Lord’s Supper. We will do that at the end of the service today, so I thought it appropriate to talk about Communion so that all would understand what it is, what it means, and that we can be on the same page in our understanding.
First of all, we need to know how the Lord’s Supper came about. We must remember that the entire nation of Israel was being held as slaves in Egypt for over 400 years. It was a severe time for them and they were feared and hated.
The Pharaoh hated them and kept them impoverished. And finally, after 400 years of this treatment, the entire nation called out to God and when that happened, He began going about the work that would lead them to their freedom. But it took the whole nation to do this.
Isn’t this like the promise God made in 2 CHRONICLES 7:14, when He said;
“If my people who are called by my name will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, I will hear from heaven and will forgive their sins and restore their land.”
No matter what a nation might be going through, when the real believers of that nation turn towards God with all belief and reliance, God promises us to help us, personally as well as our land.
America is going through a bad time today. We have been told that we cannot pray in school because some would be offended and we have "fine". We have been told to stop reading our bibles and we have said "fine". And now, we are told to not mention the name of Jesus or to pray where people can hear us because it is "offensive" to some. And so far, we have said "fine".
Is it any wonder why American is having such problems as our youth being totally uncontrollable, or how we have been divided in this nation almost beyond repair? Maybe it is because, instead of praying for God's help as He told us to, we try to kick Him out of our culture.
And we are suffering. We should do just as the ancient Israelites did: Turn to God. Not everyone ... just those who are called by His name, or the small remnant of true believers who truly do seek to be like Christ.
And God told the Israelites that, as their very last supper as slaves, they were to eat a meal that He described in detail, and do so with their sandals on so they would be ready to go at a moment’s notice. He also instructed them to eat that meal yearly in celebration of what He did for them.
And now, Jesus is in Jerusalem to eat the Passover Meal with His disciples. And later, He gave the Apostle Paul very important information as to what happened at that meal.
1 CORINTHIANS 11:23-30 (Paraphrased)
23 For I pass on to you what I received from the Lord himself. On the night when he was betrayed, the Lord Jesus took some bread 24 and gave thanks to God for it. Then he broke it in pieces and, as He passed it to the disciples He said, “This represents my body, which is being given for you. When you eat of this bread, do so in remembrance me.”
25 In the same way, he took the cup of wine after the supper, and said, “This cup is the new covenant between God and his people - an agreement confirmed by my shed blood. Each time you drink of this cup, do it in remembrance of me. 26 For every time you eat this bread and drink from this cup, you are announcing the Lord’s death for your sake, and that you are eagerly awaiting my return for you.”
27 So if anyone eats this bread or drinks from this cup of the Lord in a manner that is not worthy of the Lord, is found guilty of sinning against the body and blood of the Lord. 28 Rather than do this, you should examine your heart before eating the bread and drinking the cup, to make sure it is properly focused on the Lord.
29 For if you eat the bread or drink the cup without honoring the body of Christ, you are eating and drinking God’s judgment upon yourself.
30 That is why many of you are weak and sick and some have even died.”
And so, exactly what is the Passover Meal? It is called the Seder, and is Seder is a religious ceremony with a carefully prescribed ritual that makes this dinner different from any other dinners a family might enjoy. The dinner is a ritual and is laid out in a book called the Haggadah.