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The Lord’s Supper


Luke 22:19  

In the passage we read together, Jesus begins His time of intense suffering by holding this very intimate communion with His disciples.  Let’s look at…

1. The Ordinance Itselfhe took bread, … Likewise also the cup 

The Lord’s Supper consists of two elements, bread and wine. Let us think of each separately for a moment.

  • The Bread. In Eastern society, bread sustains life! Now, Jesus is to the soul, what bread is to the body. He gives life to the soul. John 6:35  cf Isaiah 53:4-7 All of that is summed up and explained to us on the Lord’s Table.  
  • The Wine. When Jesus died on the cross, His shed blood atoned for our sins. He took the punishment that we deserved. He took our separation, and bore our hell. The Bible is full of references to this. Here’s a couple of examples: 1 John 1:7 1 Peter 1:18-19  

Such is the nature of the Lord’s Supper to the Christian believer.  

2 The Characteristics of the Ordinancethis do in remembrance of me

What makes the Lord’s Supper ‘Holy Communion?’ What makes it different from any other common meal, and different therefore so important to our congregational life and worship?  

  1. It is a Divinely APPOINTED ordinance. In reference to this ordinance, Jesus said, This do in remembrance of me.” It is a divinely given command of the Lord Jesus Christ to attend at the Lord’s Supper. It has the highest seal of command upon it, – that of the Son of God Himself.
  2. It is a CONTINUOUS ordinance. It recognises that in the death of Jesus, a past act, our sins were forgiven. Yet it looks forward as well to the end of this present age, for we only celebrate the Lord’s Supper, ‘Till He come!’   1 Car. 11:26  
  3. It is an ESSENTIAL ordinance. Everything that He commanded, he did so in order that we would obey Him. The Lord’s Supper is not optional for the believer. Matthew 28:20. The Lord’s Supper is the Lord’s Command.  Jesus instituted it for us, for He knows what is best for us!

So, you can see that the Lord’s Supper is celebrated by God’s command, instituted by Jesus himself, and to be a feature in the Lord’s Church until he returns, or until we are one in fellowship with him, and the glorified saints in his presence. So, given all of that:-

3. How it Should be Observed1 Corinthians 11:23  

The Lord’s Supper is a reflection on a death – the atoning death of the Son of God Himself. I suggest that a high level of respect and reverence is in order. We observe it:-

  1. In a spirit of meek humility. When we come to the Lord’s Table, we are reminded again that we are sinners. We remember again the sacrifice of Christ on the Cross, and we remember that He died for me as a sinner. We are living monuments of God’s redeeming mercy.
  2. In a sprit of thankfulness for Christ’s Love1 John 4:19 Here is the evidence of His first love for us! Here is Christ, saying to us, ‘This is my body… This is my blood!’ It was broken and poured out on the Cross for YOU! We see at the Lord’s Supper, the example of Christ’s love for, in that while we were still sinners, He loved us, and gave His life for us! We must do the same! John 13:34  
  3. With faith.The Bible tells us that we are to approach God in faith! Hebrews 10:22  
  4. With Hope. The Lord’s Supper is a foretaste of heaven! There will be no communion services in glory,for there our communion with the Lord will be complete.  

4. The Blessings of the Lord’s Supper. and gave unto them,

The Lord’s Supper is given for our benefits. But how will it benefit and bless us?

  1. The soul is strengthened! Isaiah 40:31
  2. Christ becomes more precious.The more we get to know Him, the more opportunities we have to commune with Him, the closer to Him we will be – The more we will love Him, the more we will admire Him, the more we will want to follow Him. 
  3. Our sanctification will be helped.  Surely the more we meditate on our own sins, and how Christ has dealt with them for us, surely the more we will want to live in pleasing obedience to Him.
  4. We will desire his closer presence. Frequent fellowship and communion on earth will lead us to desire continuous communion in heaven.

5. The Call to Self Examination. 1st Corinthians 11:28 

When Paul relays the words of Jesus to the corinthian believers, he includes a call to self examination with regard to the Lord’s Supper. Let’s just spend a moment examining ourselves, and our attitudes to Communion just now.   Christian, do you attend the Lord’s Supper on a regular basis? When you come around the table, will you come in a right spirit? Will you come as one who is watchful. humble, prayerful? If you only come to the Lord’s table on an infrequent basis, why is this? Are you deliberately disobedient, wilfully ignoring God’s righteous demands upon you? Do you not understand the great benefits of communing with God in this manner? Are you staying away because you think you are not good enough? None of us are.

Yet, there are those who cannot come!   1 Cor. 11:26-30 If you are not a Christian believer, you are not ready, and not able to come to the Lord’s Table. Your sins have not been forgiven. And even more tragically, if you cannot have communion with God now, you can never have it in eternity. Do not reject the Gospel, do not slight Christ, Do not destroy your soul. Do not perish in your sins. Repent, believe, be born again. Come to Christ and join with His people in fellowship and communion with Him.

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