THE LORD'S SUPPER
The Lord's Supper and Water Baptism are the two ordinances that the Lord has given to us during the present age. The Lord's Supper is to be practiced repeatedly, whereas water baptism is to be observed only once by the believer in the Lord Jesus Christ. Scripture tells us in I Corinthians 11:2, "Now I praise you, brethren, that ye remember me in all things, and keep the ordinances, as I delivered them to you." Therefore, every Christian is obligated to observe these ordinances. Although they have nothing to do with obtaining our salvation, they are extremely important in relationship to our Christian walk.
The late Dr. M.R. DeHaan, in his booklet entitled "The Lord's Supper", expressed the importance of the Christian's observance of the Lord's Supper. Dr. DeHaan said, "The celebration of the Lord's Supper is a divine command and a solemn obligation that rests upon every one of God's children. Not a child of God lives or ever will live during this age who is not obligated to assemble with the people of God for the celebration of the memorial of the death of Christ in the Lord's Supper. To neglect to do so is to be disobedient to the Lord's direct wish, and will be followed by the judgment of the Lord upon disobedience. This is very clearly taught to us in this passage:
"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"-I Corinthians 11:24.
There can be no side-stepping the issue. THIS DO. THIS DO. THIS DO. Let it be known, therefore, that EVERY CHRISTIAN IS COMMANDED TO OBSERVE THE DEATH OF CHRIST in the Lord's Supper. If you raise the objection that you are not worthy, then I answer that the only ones that have a right to come to the table of the Lord are those that REALLY BELIEVE and CONFESS that they are unworthy. It was just for such as these that the table was instituted. If there is sin in your life that prevents you from coming to the table, you had better settle that matter immediately and come to the table lest God's chastening for your disobedience drives you to the place where you are unwilling to come. THIS DO. THIS DO. Anything that hinders you from coming must be put away that you may come.
Moreover, we ought to come to the table and welcome every opportunity to come because of the great privilege the Lord bestows in permitting us to come. The table of the Lord is the TABLE OF THE LORD. Think of that. It is not the table of an assembly or a church or a communion or a denomination, but the TABLE OF THE LORD. HE is the Host. He is the Master of the house. We poor, stumbling, faltering creatures, who are erring everyday, and unworthy of anything but hell, are invited to come and sit at His table. We who murdered His son, we who reviled Him by our sin, we who spit upon Him and drove the cruel nails through His blessed hands, we are invited to come and sit at His table, with HIM as our Host, and feast with Him by his grace. What a privilege it is. Do you not see the insult if any child of God refuses to accept that invitation? O base ingratitude that any of us dare or even let the suggestion arise in our hearts that we will leave our place empty. Surely, the Master of the house must deal with you and will deal with you as a disobedient child if you insult Him by refusing to receive that which He has at infinite cost prepared for you. Remember, that the Lord's table is for HIS people and not for the world. The entire 11th Chapter in I Corinthians applies to believers.
The Lord's Supper is a necessary memorial given us to remind us of the infinite cost with which our salvation has been bought. The Lord said, "THIS DO IN REMEMBRANCE OF ME." Then God's people may after all forget the great price that was paid for their redemption. Yes, sad, sad though the thought may be, it is, alas, all too true. Even we may forget. And God who knows our hearts better than any of us, knows that we are yet so human and wayward that if He did not continually remind us, we would soon, so soon, forget. How many times during the week do we not forget? And so the Lord tenderly rebukes us in this supper and says, "You are such unthankful children that if I did not provide a reminder, you would all too soon forget what it cost me to purchase your salvation." He has given it to keep our love aflame and our hearts aglow for Him. He has given it to remind us that we are but dust and even though redeemed, would be unable to remember Him. And at the same time the supper reminds us that it is HIS faithfulness that saves us and not OURS. If He had forgotten us as we so often forget Him, there would be no hope for us at all.
But when we come to the table of the Lord there is still more. In addition to a command, a privilege, and a memorial, it is a testimony as well. In I Corinthians 11:25 we read, "For as often as ye eat this bread, and drink this cup, ye do show the LORD'S DEATH..." Every time we come together to break bread, we are testifying by the receiving of that bread and cup that we have experienced in our lives the benefits of the Lord's death and cleansing power of His precious blood. We declare the Lord's death. We witness to the fact that we are saved and have appropriated by faith the finished work of the Lord Jesus on our behalf when He died on the cruel cross of Calvary. Every time the child of God, therefore, gathers with the saints about this table; he is witnessing to his personal relationship with Christ. When I take the bread and raise it to my mouth, I testify by that act that I believe that His body was for me and His blood shed for me.
Every time the Lord's Supper is made available, you should make every effort to avail yourself of the opportunity to obey Christ's command. Read I Corinthians 11:23-34. There is a blessing in obeying the Lord, and I pray the Lord's Supper will be a means of real blessing in your life.