One of my favorite things at Central is when we celebrate communion each Sunday. You may do that were you assemble. You may not. We choose to do so because of the example of the early congregations we read about in the book of Acts. It appears in Acts 20 that the company with Paul delayed their journey a few days so that they could assemble with the brethren at Troas on the first day of the week (Acts 20:6-7). There they would “break bread” (take communion) and Paul would exhort those assembled.
This past Sunday as Glen was guiding our thoughts to the cross, I opened my Bible to 1 Corinthians 11:23-29:
(23) For I received from the Lord what I also delivered to you, that the Lord Jesus on the night when he was betrayed took bread, (24) and when he had given thanks, he broke it, and said, “This is my body which is for you. Do this in remembrance of me.” (25) In the same way also he took the cup, after supper, saying, “This cup is the new covenant in my blood. Do this, as often as you drink it, in remembrance of me.” (26) For as often as you eat this bread and drink the cup, you proclaim the Lord’s death until he comes. (27) Whoever, therefore, eats the bread or drinks the cup of the Lord in an unworthy manner will be guilty concerning the body and blood of the Lord. (28) Let a person examine himself, then, and so eat of the bread and drink of the cup. (29) For anyone who eats and drinks without discerning the body eats and drinks judgment on himself.
My eyes were drawn to some notes I had jotted down. Notes to help me focus. A simple three step outline to help me as I celebrate communion with Central as well as Christians around the world.
- Look Back at the Cross (1Co 11:23-25). Christ sacrificed heaven to come to earth. Jesus sacrificed his life to die for our sin. Looking back to the cross motivates us to change for the better.
- Look Forward to Christ’s Return (1Co 11:26). Each time we celebrate communion we are reminding ourselves and those around us not only of what Christ did, but that He is returning to take His own people to be with Him eternally.
- Look Inward (1Co 11:27-29). The Lord’s Supper is also a time for reflection. We are good at looking inwardly as one year ends and another begins, and we resolve to make changes. When birthdays roll around we might look back and see how we lived that year of our lives. Some may celebrate a season of fasting or giving up certain vices or desires for a time of reflection. But as a child of God, eating unleavened bread and drinking the fruit of the vine each week gives us reason to reflect weekly and strive for better consistency in our service to Him.
How are you and the Lord today? How is your relationship?