Today’s paragraph below shows how few rules there are for communion, eucharist, The Lord’s Supper or whatever else someone might call it. It is obvious from the Bible that the communion service was highly regarded in the early church. Paul talks with the language of an oral tradition about how he has passed on to the churches the tradition that was passed on to him. It seems obvious to me that when Jesus broke bread and said “This is my body,” he could not have meant it literally. He was still alive when he set up this ritual. He set up a way for people to regularly remember what he had done on the cross.
1 Corinthians 11: 23-26
23For I received from the Lord what I also passed on to you: The Lord Jesus, on the night he was betrayed, took bread, 24and when he had given thanks, he broke it and said, “This is my body, which is for you; do this in remembrance of me.” 25In the same way, after supper he took the cup, saying, “This cup is the new covenant in my blood; do this, whenever you drink it, in remembrance of me.” 26For whenever you eat this bread and drink this cup, you proclaim the Lord’s death until he comes.
- What did the Lord Jesus do on the night he was betrayed?
- What is the cup in Jesus’ blood?
- What happens whenever you eat this bread or drink this cup?
- How does your church use bread and a ‘cup’?
- How do you feel about the things added around communion?
How do you feel communion can be used as an evangelistic tool?
The question stems from this: so often in churches, the communion table is hedged with so many things… where there used to stand (in the catholic church i attended growing up) a special altar and a rail separating us from the elements (until a priest brought it to us), now there stands in many evangelical churches I’ve been to, a million words.
IF you are a Christian… IF you have been baptized… IF you have made your profession of faith publicly… IF you are a member of this congregation…
… then this body is for you. Everyone else, please amuse yourselves quietly while we partake in something.
I heard a speaker at missions conference one who spoke that maybe this was just one more way we exclude the people Jesus may have included. Jesus, whose ministry very much reached to the people who felt excluded by the religious… might he have passed the bread to the pagan next to him and invited him into a worship service of a God who loved him very much?
What are your thoughts on that idea?