Christianity 201

October 11, 2014

Participating in The Lord’s Supper

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Today’s thoughts are from the book In The Breaking of the Bread: 52 Meditations on the Meal of Remembrance by J. Lee Magness (Standard Publishing, 2007).

CommunionAll Of Us

Is not the cup of thanksgiving for which we give thanks a participation in the blood of Christ?  And is not the bread that we break a participation in the body of Christ?  Because there is one loaf, we, who are many, are one body, for we all partake of the one loaf.  (1 Cor 10:16, 17)

This is not just a pageant, this breaking of the bread, this out-pouring of the cup.  It is a feast for us to participate in – all of us.  This is not a concert or a lecture or a demonstration, not something done to us or for us.  It is something done by us – all of us.

If it is in any sense a drama, it is a drama in which we are not the on-lookers, not the applauders.  We are not the audience but the actors – all of us.  And our play has its props, but they number only three.  There is the loaf – his body broken for us – all of us.  And there is the cup – the cup of the new covenant in his blood poured out for us – all of us.  But there is also the table, not an altar for priests and presbyters, not a stage for the star alone, but a table, reminding us that we are the guests, that we have our part to play in the play – all of us.

And who is this all-of-us who have come to this table?  We are migrant workers and business executives and shopkeepers.  We are unemployed.  We are children, elderly, single, married.  We went through grade school, we have a Ph.D.  We are rich, and… not rich.  And we have all-of-us come to this table because someone invited us and died for us and rose for us and lives for us.  But aren’t we sinners?  Yes, all of us.  The same all-of-us sinners he saved.

The one who gave us himself has given us parts in his great drama of redemption.  We are not the audience, we are the actors – all of us.

God, thank you for inviting us to share the loaf and the cup, and thank you for inviting us to sit around the table, together, all of us, through Jesus, Amen.