Communion is when we gather to honor our Lord’s command, “This do in remembrance of Me” (1 Cor. 11:24–25). The word translated “remembrance” means much more than “do this in memory of”. The word carries the idea of our present participation in a past event.
1 Corinthians 11:24-25 and when He had given thanks, He broke it and said, “Take, eat; this is My body which is broken for you; do this in remembrance of Me.”25 In the same manner He also took the cup after supper, saying, “This cup is the new covenant in My blood. This do, as often as you drink it, in remembrance of Me.” NKJV
This Supper reminds us of the unity of Christ’s church. He says that we are “one loaf” (1 Cor. 10:17). Tonight when we eat eat from this supper we do so with every other believer on earth. We celebrate as parts of one loaf. Parts of that loaf are here in Tulsa, others scattered across the other 49 countries—and even more scattered around the world. We are one with them as represented by that one loaf.
1 Corinthians 10:17 For we, though many, are one bread (loaf NIV) and one body; for we all partake of that one bread (loaf NIV). NKJV
It is “The Lord’s Supper” (I Cor. 11:20), and we must never forget it is His Supper for all of His body. This celebration is not the exclusive property of any one Christian denomination, local church, or group. Each time we share in the Supper, we are identifying with all true believers everywhere. And that is why we are always to be reminded of our obligation to “keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace” (Eph. 4:3).
“For the Hebrew to remember, meant much more than simply to bring something to mind, merely to recall that it happened. To truly remember is to go back in one’s mind and recapture as much of the reality and significance of an event or experience as one possibly can. To remember Jesus Christ and His sacrifice on the cross is to relive with Him His life, agony, suffering, and death as much as is humanly possible. When we partake of the Lord’s Supper we do not offer a sacrifice again; we remember His once–for–all sacrifice for us and rededicate ourselves to His obedient service”.1
That is our goal this evening. Recapture with me what you know to be true, what you believe about Christ’s death, and what is yours because you are in Him! To begin, we need to start at the place it all happened—the Cross of Jesus Christ!
Author: Isaac Watts, 1674-1748 Musician: Edward Miller, 1731-1807
When I survey the wondrous cross On which the Prince of glory died, My richest gain I count but loss, And pour contempt on all my pride.
Forbid it, Lord, that I should boast, Save in the death of Christ my God! All the vain things that charm me most, I sacrifice them to His blood.
See from His head, His hands, His feet, Sorrow and love flow mingled down! Did e’er such love and sorrow meet, Or thorns compose so rich a crown?
His dying crimson, like a robe, Spreads o’er His body on the tree; Then I am dead to all the globe, And all the globe is dead to me.
Were the whole realm of nature mine, That were a present far too small; Love so amazing, so divine, Demands my soul, my life, my all.
Tonight we need to start this communion as we all rededicate our hearts to Christ’s Supremacy, our minds to His control, our bodies as His dwelling place, and our time as our offering back to Him. To do that, join me in a remembrance of Him.
Start by bowing your head and thinking of the 3-4 worst sins you have ever committed or the most horrible besetting sins in your life: the ones you hope no one will ever know about.
Then, lift your eyes Heavenward and quietly in your heart thank Jesus Christ for completely forgiving you of all of those deep dark stains, and for erasing the record that you ever even did them.
Let that settle in for a moment. You have now done what God asks you to do at His Table—you have remembered Christ’s justifying, forgiving, regenerating, reconciling death for your sins. To that we can hardly respond except to say, I am undeserving, and unworthy, but very grateful.
# 203 And Can It Be?
Author: Charles Wesley, 1707-1788 Musician: Thomas Campbell, 1777-1844
And can it be that I should gain An int’rest in the Saviour’s blood? Died He for me, who caused His pain? For me, who Him to death pursued? Amazing love! how can it be That Thou, my God, shouldst die for me? Amazing love! how can it be That Thou, my God, shouldst die for me?
‘Tis mystery all! Th’Immortal dies! Who can can explore His strange design? In vain the firstborn seraph tries To sound the depths of love divine! ‘Tis mercy all! let earth adore, Let angel minds inquire no more. ‘Tis mercy all! let earth adore, Let angel minds inquire no more.
He left His Father’s throne above— So free, so infinite His grace— Humbled Himself in matchless love And bled for Adam’s helpless race; ‘Tis mercy all, immense and free, For, O my God, it found out me! ‘Tis mercy all, immense and free, For, O my God, it found out me!
Long my imprisoned spirit lay Fast bound bound in sin and nature’s night; Thine eye diffused a quick’ning ray, I woke, the dungeon flamed with light; My chains fell off, my heart was free, I rose, went forth, and followed Thee. My chains fell off, my heart was free, I rose, went forth, and followed Thee.
No condemnation now I dread; Jesus, and all in Him, is mine! Alive in Him, my living Head, And clothed in righteousness divine, Bold I approach th’eternal throne, And claim the crown, through Christ my own. Bold I approach th’eternal throne, And claim the crown, through Christ my own.
Focus on your Adoption
Because of our sin—we are all strangers to God; so we need adoption.
Jesus who died to take strangers and make them part of the family—that’s adoption! A Sinner stands before God as a stranger and is called a Son by His choice.
In Adoption we go from being a stranger and an outsider to being His son or daughter and in partnership with Him!
We need to experience what the Scriptures often declare—God has taken me from being a stranger outside of His presence and blessing and has made me his child and the son and daughter of His family in partnership with Him2.
• John 1:12 “But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, to those who believe in His name”. Because I was adopted by God—I am God’s child. Say that aloud with me
I’m so glad I’m a part of the family of God I’ve been washed in the fountain And cleansed by His blood Joint heirs with Jesus as we travel this sod For I’m a part of the family The family of God © 1970 by William J. Gaither. All rights reserved.
• John 6:47 “Most assuredly, I say to you, he who believes in Me has everlasting life”. Because I was adopted by God—I have everlasting life. Say that aloud with me
# 202 Amazing Grace! John Newton, 1779 “A Collection of Sacred Ballads,” 1790
Amazing grace!—how sweet the sound—that saved a wretch like me! I once was lost, but now am found, was blind, but now I see.
When we’ve been there ten thousand years, bright shining as the sun, we’ve no less days to sing God’s praise than when we’ve first begun.
• Romans 8:28 “And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose”. Because I was adopted by God—God is working everything in my lifetime out for His good. Say that aloud with me
# 47 Be not dismayed whate’er betide, God will take care of you; Beneath his wings of love abide, God will take care of you;
God will take care of you; Through ev’ry day, o’er all the way; He will take care of you, God will take care of you.
Through days of toil when heart doth fail, God will take care of you; When dangers fierce your path assail, God will take care of you.
All you may need he will provide, God will take care of you; Trust him and you will be satisfied, God will take care of you.
No matter what may be the test, God will take care of you; Lean, weary one, upon his breast, God will take care of you.
1MacArthur, John F., The MacArthur New Testament Commentary, (Chicago: Moody Press) 1983.
2 John 10:10 “The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy. I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly”. Because I was adopted by God—I have abundant life. Say that aloud with me; John 15:15 “No longer do I call you servants, for a servant does not know what his master is doing; but I have called you friends, for all things that I heard from My Father I have made known to you”. Because I was adopted by God—I am a branch of the true vine, a channel of His life. Say that aloud with me; Romans 8:17 “… and if children, then heirs—heirs of God and joint heirs with Christ, if indeed we suffer with Him, that we may also be glorified together”. Because I was adopted by God—I am an heir of God, and co-heir with Christ. Say that aloud with me; Ephesians 1:5 “… having predestined us to adoption as sons by Jesus Christ to Himself, according to the good pleasure of His will.” I have been adopted by God. Say that aloud with me; Philippians 3:20 “For our citizenship is in heaven, from which we also eagerly wait for the Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ”. Because I was adopted by God—I am a citizen of heaven. Say that aloud with me