11.23 For I have received of the Lord that which also I delivered unto you, that the Lord Jesus the same night in which he was betrayed took bread:
11.24 And when he had given thanks, he brake it, and said, Take, eat: this is my body, which is broken for you: this do in remembrance of me. 11,25 After the same manner also he took the cup, when he had supped, saying, This cup is the new testament in my blood: this do ye, as oft as ye drink it, in remembrance of me.
11.26 For as often as ye eat this bread, and drink this cup, ye do shew (proclaim) the Lord’s death till he come.
Paul repeats and then comments on the words with which The Lord Jesus spoke at The Last Supper, which was in reality a Passover Seder, or meal. (Mt 26. 26–29; Mk 14. 22–25; Lk 22.15–20.)
Paul tells us that he received of The Lord Himself the ordinance of The Lord’s Supper and its meaning. Since the dating of this letter was written before any of the gospels, this is the first written mention of the meaning and purpose of The Lord’s Supper in the New Testament.
Broken for you is a reference to the physical cruelty of Jesus’ death. What is eaten is called bread, though at the same time it is said to be the body of the Lord, plainly showing that the apostle did not mean that the bread was changed into flesh.
To eat the bread and drink the cup in remembrance of Me is far more than thinking back about something that happened to Jesus in a purely historical sense.
Remembrance in this sense means to call to mind; weigh well and consider what Jesus was doing when He hung on that cross. The essential purpose of the Lord’s Table is to call to mind, weigh well and consider the meaning of the once and for all sacrifice of Jesus Christ, The Lamb of God Who takes away the sin of the world.
The new covenant, sealed by the blood of Jesus, was prophesied in Jer. 31:31–34 Behold, the days come, saith the Lord, that I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel, and with the house of Judah: Not according to the covenant that I made with their fathers in the day that I took them by the hand to bring them out of the land of Egypt; which my covenant they brake, although I was an husband unto them, saith the Lord: But this shall be the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel; After those days, saith the Lord, I will put my law in their inward parts, and write it in their hearts; and will be their God, and they shall be my people. And they shall teach no more every man his neighbour, and every man his brother, saying, Know the Lord: for they shall all know me, from the least of them unto the greatest of them, saith the Lord: for I will forgive their iniquity, and I will remember their sin no more.
It is the blood of Jesus Christ that seals and thus ratifies the new covenant.
Heb 9.11,12 But Christ being come an high priest of good things to come, by a greater and more perfect tabernacle, not made with hands, that is to say, not of this building; Neither by the blood of goats and calves, but by His own blood He entered in once (once and for all) into the holy place, having obtained (a finished work in the past tense) eternal redemption for us.
Rom 5.8,9 But God commendeth His love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. Much more then, being now justified by His blood, we shall be saved from wrath through Him.
The New Covenant is a declaration that Jesus Christ is The Author and Finisher of our faith. The Old Testament shadows of the sacrificial, ritualistic and ceremonial system has been replaced by the once and for all perfect sacrifice of Jesus Christ, which He accomplished by His death on the cross (Heb. 8:7–13).
Priests under the Old Covenant repeatedly offered the blood of animals; but the New Covenant has been ratified once and for all by the death of Christ. Jesus Christ shouted on the cross the words that rocked the universe, It is finished!
Isn’t it interesting that the chief ordinance of Christianity is the commemoration and proclamation of the death of The Lord Jesus?
The Lord’s Supper is an acted sermon; you do show The Lord’s death. The Lord’s Supper not only reminds us to look back on Christ’s life and death on the cross. It also reminds us to do so in have an eager and joyful, anticipation of His return.
2 Tim 4.8 mentions those who love His appearing. Hebrews 9.28 unto them that look for him shall he appear the second time without sin unto salvation.
Are you among those who are eagerly waiting for His soon return? Is the Second Coming of Christ a “doctrine” that you believe, or a driving force of how you live and prioritize your life?
One out of every 30 verses in the Bible mentions the subject of Christ’s return or the end of time.
Of the 216 chapters in the New Testament, there are well over 300 references to the return of Christ.
23 of the 27 New Testament books mention Christ’s return.
In the Old Testament, such well-known and reliable men of God as Job, Moses, David, Isaiah, Jeremiah, Daniel, as well as most of the minor prophets mention Christ’s return in their writings.
Christ often spoke specifically about His own return to earth.
Throughout the centuries, Christ’s disciples and followers have adamantly believed, written, and taught that Christ would someday return to earth. And every person that has this hope.
Revelation 22.20 He which testifieth these things saith, Surely I come quickly. Amen. Even so, come, Lord Jesus.
PARTAKING OF THE LORD’S SUPPER UNWORTHILY
11.27 Wherefore (in light of what the sacrifice of Jesus on the cross means) whosoever shall eat this bread, and drink this cup of the Lord, unworthily, shall be guilty of the body and blood of the Lord.
The Gk anaxios means “in an unworthy, improper or careless way.” It speaks of a self- centered and irreverent attitude. It means to come to the table indifferently, or with an unrepentant heart, or a spirit of bitterness, or any other ungodly attitude. This unrepentant attitude reveals a rebellious heart and an open disrespect and contempt for the sacrifice that Jesus Christ made to provide that forgiveness.
Some people do not believe that they should take the elements because they are struggling with some easily besetting sin.
May I suggest to you beloved that The Lord’s table is the very place for the person to come for help when they are struggling with sin, wrestling with temptation, or caught up in carnality.
Matthew Henry beautifully wrote: “fearful believers should not be discouraged from attending at this holy ordinance. The Holy Spirit never caused this scripture to be written to deter serious Christians from their duty, though the devil has often made this use of it. “
Hebrews 4.14-16 Seeing then that we have a great high priest, that is passed into the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold fast our profession. For we have not an high priest which cannot be touched with the feeling of our infirmities; but was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin. Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need.
Lord, I come to you this morning with a desperate need for your grace, mercy and forgiveness. I eat of the bread and I drink of the cup, knowing that I am a sinner and that only in You can I find the forgiveness and cleansing of my sin.
11.28 But let a man examine himself, and so let him eat of that bread, and drink of that cup.
The Lord’s Supper is to a time for self-examination, and therefor is to be taken both seriously and soberly. Self examination means that I hold up the mirror of God’s Word and allow it to reveal to me any sin that needs to be confessed and repented of.
It’s like going through the security scanner at the airport before you board a plane. The scanner is meant to detect any object that is dangerous or harmful for the safety of the flight.
Self-examination is a time for us to ask God to search our hearts and see if there be any wicked way in us. This is a God ordained time for us to not only get our hearts right with Him, but with one another as well.
At the end of Paul’s second letter to the Corinthians, he writes these very sobering words: Cor 13.5 Examine yourselves, whether ye be in the faith; prove your own selves. Know ye not your own selves, how that Jesus Christ is in you, except ye be reprobates?
To be reprobate means to be disapproved; not genuine. It means that there is no evidence of the fruit of someone professing to be a branch that is abiding in The Vine, Jesus Christ.
The implication is sobering. There can be those who come to church week after month after year after decade but who are not saved. How do you know if you’re in the faith?
Is Jesus Christ dwelling in you? If so, you are a new creature, old things are passed away, behold all things become new. There is an ongoing life of repentance and being conformed by The Holy Spirit into the image of Jesus Christ.
11.29 For he that eateth and drinketh unworthily, eateth and drinketh damnation (punishment) to himself, not discerning the Lord’s body.
11.30 For this cause many are weak and sickly among you, and many sleep (have died).
To not discern The Lord’s body means to treat with indifference the meaning and purpose for why Jesus died on the cross. This is very serious.
These illnesses and deaths in Corinth were the consequence of carelessly coming to The Lord’s table with an unrepentant attitude. If your response is that sounds serious, you have gotten the point.
11.31 For if we would judge ourselves, we should not be judged.
We are typically pretty good at pointing out the sins and faults of others, aren’t we? Communion is about admitting, owning and confessing our sins to God.
Psalm 51.1-4a Have mercy upon me, O God, according to thy lovingkindness: according unto the multitude of thy tender mercies blot out my transgressions. Wash me throughly from mine iniquity, and cleanse me from my sin. For I acknowledge my transgressions: and my sin is ever before me. Against thee, thee only, have I sinned, and done this evil in thy sight.
11.32 But when we are judged, we are chastened (disciplined) of the Lord, that we should not be condemned with the world.
In other words, we may think that we have fooled God when we tried to sneak something through the security scanner, but He loves us too much to let us self-destruct, thus He chastens us.
Please note that when The Lord chastens us, it is to prevent our being condemned with the unbelieving world.
11.33 Wherefore, my brethren, when ye come together to eat, tarry one for another.
11.34 And if any man hunger, let him eat at home; that ye come not together unto condemnation. And the rest will I set in order when I come.
When we partake of The Lord’s Supper, we are not only celebrating the union that we have with The Lord Jesus Christ. We are also to do so with recognition that we are also united to one another in Christ.
It is not hard to see that there was some correlation between their self-examination and their attitudes towards others in the body.
The Call for servers and worship team
Did God convict you this morning? For many of us that conviction has been for the millionth time. For some of you, that conviction may have come for the very first time today. Do you know why The Lord convicts us?
Revelation 3.19,20 As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten: be zealous therefore, and repent. Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if any man hear my voice, and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with me.
Jesus convicts us because He loves us. He rebukes us and chastens us in order to call us back into sweet, intimate fellowship with Him.
The new birth is not a matter of religion, but of relationship. It’s not a question of theology, but of intimacy. The new birth is much more than knowing about Jesus intellectually. The new birth is knowing Jesus Christ personally as Lord, Savior, Shepherd and King.
John 17.3 And this is life eternal, that they might know thee the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom thou hast sent.
Jeremiah 9,23,24Thus saith the Lord, Let not the wise man glory in his wisdom, neither let the mighty man glory in his might, let not the rich man glory in his riches: But let him that glorieth glory in this, that he understandeth and knoweth me, that I am the Lord which exercise lovingkindness, judgment, and righteousness, in the earth: for in these things I delight, saith the Lord.