Summary: The Lord's Supper was not born in isolation. It is the symbolic demonstration of God's redemptive plan through the ages. This lesson touches God's work through Abram, Moses, and Jesus.
1. Gilligan's Isolation
There were very few of these episodes that you could consider emotionally touching. But I do remember one. Gilligan had gotten his feelings hurt and decided to move away to the other side of the Island to live alone in a cave. Immediately, this became a miserable existence for Gilligan--he was all alone. But also miserable for everyone else on the island--one of their own was no longer among them...and there was a terrible void. They missed him at the dinner table. They missed his jokes, his laughter, and his gentleness. They even missed his clumsy screw-ups. At one point in the episode the six were sitting around the dinner table taking turns talking about the specific things they missed about him. So what did they do? Skipper decided to leave the rest and go live with Gilligan so he wouldn't be alone. Then another person did the same, then another. Until finally, all seven people were together again on the other side of the island in Gilligan's cave. In true spiritual community, we either make it together, or we don't make it...at least not in a healthy way.
Here's a fun exercise for you to do when you have time. Use your concordance and find all of the scriptures from Acts to Revelation in which you find the word "together" or "one another" and see what early Christians did "together." Here's a sampling:
* Meeting together.
* Praying together.
* Sharing material things with one another.
* Eating together.
* Consulting with and advising one another.
* Planning together.
* Working together.
* Standing together.
Jesus Christ never intended for any of his followers to follow him in isolation from other believers.
2. The same concept holds true with our understanding of scripture. [Snoopy's Book Title
* We do not isolate verses and build a theology on them -- Saved by "grace" or "faith"?
* We do look at context and history to see how it all fits together to understand the text
* Too often our practices can be determined by an isolated verse + a preference
3. For years I thought that God made up things like baptism and the Lord's Supper as "new" things in the New Testament. The truth is these and others are part of a greater story.
4. The Lord's Supper has its roots in the Passover meal of the Hebrews' exodus from Egypt.
* The Exodus is one of the most important events in the scriptures -- it lays the foundation for many key teachings, including the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus
* The Exodus is even part of a bigger story
5. 1 Corinthians 11.17-26
a. Jewish people retell the events of the exodus, especially of the death of the lamb each Passover
b. Christians retell the story of our deliverance with the death of the "Lamb of God"
c. BTW, there is a word play in verse 23 -- "Betrayed" = "Passed on"; at Passover, Jesus was Passed On to the authorities by Judas, the betrayer
I. Abram Foreshadowed the Exodus
A. Abraham is Repeatedly Remembered in Scripture
OF ROYAL LINEAGE
People will pay big bucks to be considered royalty. In 2005, a scrap book that once belonged to Britain's Queen Victoria was up for auction, and the high bid was £53,400 (101,117.42 dollars). One of the bidders hoped to prove royal heritage through a hair that belonged to Victoria contained in the memorabilia.