Summary: Think of it everywhere Jesus walked that day He would have seen the blood being applied to homes in Jerusalem. A constant reminder of what was to come for Him but He kept walking toward it and even celebrated it with His disciples. Communion Passover
Three in One, Body, Blood and Spirit
World Communion Sunday
Today we celebrate Holy Communion with Christians around the world. The tradition was begun in 1933 by Rev. Hugh Thomson Kerr who ministered in the Shadyside Presbyterian Church in Pittsburgh Pennsylvania.
Source: Wikipedia: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/World_Communion_Sunday
The idea was to build unity among all Christian churches stressing our interconnectedness to Jesus Christ as one bride rather than many bridesmaids.
Not everyone participates in this practice of World Communion Sunday but it does serve to bring us collectively to the table of the Lord. That is a good thing.
We churches differ in our celebration of communion regarding what kind of elements we use. Some use unleavened bread, some leavened others use crackers, some use fermented wine others grape juice. Some churches celebrate communion every Sunday others once a month and still others once every 3 months or so.
The point is that we Christian churches all celebrate it as a Sacrament, something set apart by God to be revered, a holy act that was instituted by Jesus and that offers a special blessing for those who take part. It is a solemn remembrance and an invitation.
This Sunday is special in that our Jewish cousins are also celebrating but for a different reason. Tonight is for them New Year’s Eve, Rosh Hashanah Jewish style ushering in year 5778. We are only at 2016 so we have some catching up to do. Both people of both covenants the Jews of the Old Testament Covenant and the Christians of the New Testament Covenant are celebrating and praise God but for different reasons.
How truly wonderful it would be to be celebrating Communion with our Jewish cousins. One day it will happen but until that time we who are called the church – Ecclesia – the called out ones will pause to remember this special invitation by Jesus to recognize Him as “Yeshua HaMashiach” Jesus the Messiah.
Strangely the ceremony of the Passover that Jesus celebrated and that became for us “The Last Supper” pointed to His coming but most of the Jews missed it.
A custom in a Jewish Passover is to set a place at the table of Elijah the prophet who would one day come and proclaim the arrival of Messiah.
John the Baptist was in fact the one who came in the spirit of Elijah but he was not recognized as coming in Elijah’s spirit by the Jewish leaders.
We read about this fulfillment in Luke 1:11- 17
11 Then an angel of the Lord appeared to him, standing at the right side of the altar of incense. 12 When Zechariah saw him, he was startled and was gripped with fear. 13 But the angel said to him: “Do not be afraid, Zechariah; your prayer has been heard. Your wife Elizabeth will bear you a son, and you are to call him John. 14 He will be a joy and delight to you, and many will rejoice because of his birth, 15 for he will be great in the sight of the Lord. He is never to take wine or other fermented drink, and he will be filled with the Holy Spirit even before he is born. 16 He will bring back many of the people of Israel to the Lord their God. 17 And he will go on before the Lord, in the spirit and power of Elijah, to turn the hearts of the parents to their children and the disobedient to the wisdom of the righteous—to make ready a people prepared for the Lord.
Jesus came and lived among them a Jewish man born to a virgin in Bethlehem, hidden in Egypt the land of Israel’s slavery then returned to Nazareth where he grew in obscurity.
Until Jesus went to the Jordan River and was baptised by John the Baptist. As Jesus approached John in the spirit of Elijah shouted out… “Look, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world! John 1:29
Then nearly 30 years old Jesus began a 3 year ministry among His own people. He healed the sick, gave sight to the blind, made the deaf hear and made those with leprosy clean. Jesus even raised the dead in the sight of many witnesses but still they rejected Him.
As God the Father freed Israel from the bondage of physical slavery and set them apart by the Covenant of the 10 Commandments, God the Son came to free Israel from spiritual slavery and usher in the New Covenant of grace.
Jesus approached Jerusalem and wept over her because He longed to gather them under His wings as a hen gathers her chicks but they would not.
But their rejection of Jesus as Messiah would not stop Jesus from freeing all those who put faith in Him and believed.