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Faith cometh by hearing and hearing by the word of God.
Sun, Apr 07, 2019

The Great Meaning and Appeals of the Lord’s Supper

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The celebration of the Lord’s Supper provides a great opportunity for learning or being reminded of the great meaning and appeal of one of the two ordinances given to the Church by the Lord Jesus Christ.

The celebration of the Lord’s Supper provides a great opportunity for learning or being reminded of the great meaning and appeal of one of the two ordinances given to the Church by the Lord Jesus Christ. The other is “Baptism.” First, there is the meaning of the bread. Jesus took the bread and broke it. This symbolized His broken body. His body was broken, that is, sacrificed, as a victim for man's deliverance (Isaiah 53:5). Second, there is the meaning of the cup.

Jesus identified the cup as His blood of the New Testament. He simply meant that His blood establishes a new covenant with God; His blood allows a new relationship between God and man. Faith in His blood and sacrifice is the way man is now to approach God. Under the Old Testament, a man who wanted a right relationship with God approached God through the sacrifice of the animal's blood. The Old Testament believer believed that God accepted him because of the sacrifice of the animal.Now, under the New Testament, the believer believes that God accepts him because of the sacrifice of Christ.

This is what Jesus said: "This is my blood of the New Testament, which is shed for many" (Mark 14:24). A man's sins are forgiven and he becomes acceptable to God by believing that Christ's blood was shed for him (1 John 1:7). Jesus also  used the Supper to make three appeals. First, Jesus used the Supper to appeal to a sinner. Judas had forsaken Jesus.He thought his sin was hid and unknown, but Jesus knew. He had seen all, everything that Judas had done. Second, Jesus used the Supper to warn the sinner. "Woe unto that man," Jesus said. The word "woe" means wrath and sorrow, anger and pity.

It was a grieving denunciation, a heartrending pronouncement of judgment. Terrible judgment was a sure thing for the sinner Judas, and it broke the heart of God. Jesus knows the destiny of the sinner, the terrible fate that awaits him. It would be better never to be born than to deny and betray Christ. Third, Jesus used the Supper to stir the searching of hearts. The disciples were stirred to ask, "Is it I?" (Matthew 26:22; Mark 14:19). They looked at themselves. They were not accusing one another; rather each one feared lest he be so weak he might fall.

Finally, the celebration of the Lord’s Supper provides a great opportunity to remember the great example of the Lord Jesus Christ. He said, in Luke 22:19, “Do this in remembrance of me.” Above all others things, Jesus Christ demonstrates not only that we are to give, but how we are to give, and what we are to give. So what do we have to learn from His life? First, the Lord Jesus Christ was rich. He was the Son of God, possessing the very nature and being and fullness of God (John 1:1-3; Phil. 2:6). Second, the Lord Jesus Christ became poor.

This refers to the incarnation of Jesus Christ, that is, to His condescension or humiliation. It refers to the great gulf He had to span in coming to earth. As Scripture declares so aptly, "He was rich, yet for your sakes He became poor." Because He became poor, we can become rich. We can receive the adoption of sons, actually become sons and daughters of God and live with Him forever and ever in the new heavens and earth (2 Cor. 6:17-18). The point is this: since Christ willingly sacrificed so much to help us, we ought to sacrifice to help those in need. Just as Christ gave everything for us when we were in desperate need, so we are to give everything to meet the needs of those who are desperately lost in this world.

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