THE LORD’S SUPPER
I Corinthians 11:23-30; Luke 22:19-20
The Lord’s Supper was established by Jesus as an occasion for the Christian to remember the Lord’s body that was broken and His blood that was shed. There is some confusion as to the proper name for the service of the Lord’s Supper. It has been named, The Lord’s Table, The Table of the Lord, The Last Supper, Communion, Eucharist, Holy Communion, Breaking of Bread, Remembering the Lord or simply The Lord’s Supper. In this study we will simply call it “The Lord’s Supper.” The name is not important but the event is very important.
The First Lord’s Supper – To understand the Lord’s Supper you need to study in the Scriptures. The Lord was with His disciples in an upper room. It was the last time of fellowship with them before His death. He loved His disciples and desired one last time of fellowship with them. “With desire I have desired to eat this passover (supper) with you” (Luke 22:15). As the meal was served the Lord taught them the meaning of this Last Supper. After the Supper He commanded, “This do in remembrance of me” (Luke 22:19). He commanded the disciples to continually observe the Lord’s Supper until He returned to be with them. The disciples also represented “all believers” of Christ Jesus. The Lord also commanded all Christians to follow His example of the Lord’s Supper. The Lord desires Christians to practice the Lord’s Supper and to remember Him until He comes again to have supper with them (Matthew 26:29). It is a time to remember the Lord until He comes.
The Meaning of the Lord’s Supper – It is a time set aside for the church to remember the Lord’s suffering and death until He returns. It is also a time of reverence and self-examination of the Christian’s life (I Corinthians 11:28). The importance should not be placed on ceremonial methods, types of bread and drink or vessels. Naturally, the service should be disciplined and in order. “This do in remembrance of me.“
The Meaning of Broken Bread – “And He took bread, and gave thanks, and brake it, and gave unto them, saying, This is my body which is given for you: this do in remembrance of me” (Luke 22:19). As you receive the broken bread you are to remember the Lord’s broken body for you. The importance is not the type of bread but Him.
The Meaning of Drink – “After the same manner also he took the cup, when he had supped, saying, This cup is the new testament in my blood: this do ye, as oft as ye drink it, in remembrance of me. For as often as ye eat this bread, and drink this cup, ye do shew the Lord’s death till he come” (I Cor. 11:25,26). As you take of the cup you should remember the blood that He shed for you. You remember His suffering for you. As “oft” as you drink you remember what the Lord has done for you. You remember the blood that was shed for you. As “oft” as you take the cup, remember, “This is my blood which is shed for you.”
The Blessing of the Lord’s Supper – The Lord’s Supper is a very special time for Christians to remember how Jesus sacrificed His body and blood for them. It is a time to fellowship and remember the Lord. The Lord had a desire to be with his own. Christians should have a desire to be with the Lord. Is it possible to forget Him? Yes, indeed! The Lord knew this and provided a reminder. He established the Lord’s Supper. The Christian is to continually take part in the Lord’s Supper until one day, the Lord Himself will again serve the supper. When we have the Lord’s Supper now and it reminds us to look forward to a time in the future when we will have the supper with Him.