1. The Lord’s Supper was instituted by Christ. It was the Passover Feast which Jesus and the disciples were partaking on the night of his betrayal. (Read Matthew 26:260 30; Mark 14:22- 25; Luke 22:19-22.) Jesus took the unleavened bread and “blessed” it (Matthew and Mark), which is “gave thanks” (Luke 22:19; I Corinthians 11:24), and gave it to the disciples. He said, “This is my body which is given for you: this do in remembrance of me.” (Luke 22:19) After the same manner he took the fruit of the vine, gave thanks, and told them all to drink of it in remembrance of him. He said, “this cup is the new testament in my blood; this do ye, as oft as ye drink it, in remembrance of me.” I Corinthians 11:25) This makes the Lord’s Supper a memorial of the death of the Lord. The items are simply unleavened bread and the juice of the grape. The Lord placed it in the kingdom of God, which is the church worship according to Matthew 26:29 and mark 14:25. He promised to eat and drink with Christians as they partake of the Lord’s Supper in the worship of the church.
2. The Lord’s Supper was continued in steadfastly by the early churches. Just after about 3,000 were baptized on Pentecost Day it is stated, “And they continued steadfastly in the apostles’ doctrine and fellowship, and in breaking of bread, and in prayers.” (Acts 2:42) The included in their worship the “breaking of bread” which in I Corinthians 10:16 is said to be communion of the body of Christ. While the cup is not mentioned in Acts 2:42 it is included as a form of a synecdoche where the part is put for the whole. Our Lord’s Day assemblies should include the Lord’s Supper.
3. How often did they gather to partake of the Lord’s Supper? The answer to this is found in Acts 20:7 where of the church at Troas it is stated, “and upon the first day of the week, when the disciples came together to break bread, Paul preached unto them, ready to depart on the morrow; and continued his speech until midnight.” This was a religious meeting and again the breaking of bread referred to the Lord’s Supper. So the early church partook thereof on the first day of the week. There are 52 first days of the week an every year. Christians ought to see that the Lord’s Supper is observed in every one of them. The Lord said, “this do ye, as oft as ye drink it, in remembrance of me.” (I Corinthians 11:25) How oft did they do it? Acts 20:7 said they came together on the first day of the week to observe the supper.
4. The Lord’s Supper is a vital part of fellowship with Christ and one another. “The cup of blessing which we bless, is it not the communion of the blood of Christ? The bread which we break, is it not the communion of the body of Christ?” (I Corinthians 10:16) The word “communion” in the Greek is “Koinonia” meaning fellowship. Some think of the “body of Christ” as the church itself in which the Christians are united in fellowship with one another and the Lord as they partake of the Lord’s Supper. Those who are “washed, sanctified, justified.” (I Corinthians 6:11), “partakers of the divine nature” (II Peter 1:4), “partakers of Christ’s sufferings” (I Peter 4:13), and “partakers of the heavenly calling” (Hebrews 3:1) are divinely acceptable subjects of the communion which is represented by the Lord’s Supper. We are definitely walking in the light and have fellowship one with another as we partake of the Lord’s Supper. (I John 1:7)
5. As we partake of the Lord’s Supper we are demonstrating to the world our faith in efficacy of the death of Christ. “For as often as ye eat this bread, and drink of this cup, ye do show the Lord’s death till he come.” (I Corinthians 11:26) The church was purchased by the blood of Christ (Acts 20:28) when he died on the cross. Our salvation is based on the death of Christ for our sins. “This is my blood which is shed for many for the remission of sins.” (Matthew 26:28) No Sunday service is complete without the Lord’s Supper and anyone would be showing ungratefulness for what the Lord did who deliberately does not meet and partake of the Lord’s Supper with other Christians on the first day of the week. As we partake of the Supper on the first day of the week we are preaching a vital sermon to the world on the necessity of the atonement through the death of Christ.
6. Preparation is necessary to properly observe the Lord’s Supper. We must put our whole being into this item of worship. “Wherefore whosoever shall eat this bread and drink this cup of the Lord, unworthily, shall be guilty of the body and blood of the Lord.” (I Corinthians 11:27) “Unworthily” is and adverb of manner denoting that our minds must be on the death of Christ as we partake. Our emotions are to enter the partaking of the Lord’s Supper in that we are very thankful for what he did for us. Our will is in the matter as we determine that we are always going to serve God through him and promote his cause. Our conscience is in the matter in that we answer in a good conscience as we observe it according to His command. We are told as we approach the Supper, “But let a man examine himself, and so let him eat of that bread and drink of that cup.”
(I Corinthians 11:28) We need to examine ourselves to see if we are in the faith. (II Corinthians 13:5) We need to examine ourselves as to whether we are in the right frame of mind to partake of the Supper. We need to keep in mind that “he that eateth and drinketh unworthily eateth and drinketh ****ation to himself, not discerning the Lord’s body.” (I Corinthians 11:29) It requires conscious effort to partake of the Supper of our Lord properly and with a blessing to our lives. Body and spirit enter into the partaking of the Lord’s Supper.
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