Breaking Bread – The Meaning of the Lord’s Supper Part 7

This entry is part 7 of 17 in the series The Meaning of the Lord's Supper

What commemorative institution, in any age, under any religious economy, was ever ordained by divine authority, which had not a fixed time for its observance?  Was it the commemoration of the finishing of creation signified by the weekly Sabbath?  Was it the Passover, the Pentecost, the Feast of Tabernacles?  Was it the Feast of Purim?  What other significant usage was it, the times or occasions of whose observance were not fixed?  What other significant usage was it, the times or occasions of whose observance were not fixed?  How often was circumcision to be administered to the same subject?  How often does a person repent and be baptized for the remission of sins?  Is there a single institution commemorative of anything, the meaning or frequency of the observance of which is not distinctively, either by precept or example, laid down in the Holy Scriptures?  Not one of social character and scarcely one of an individual character.  The commemoration of the Lord’s death must, then, be a weekly institution-an institution in all the meetings of the disciples for Christian worship; or it must be an anomaly-a thing without importance-an institution like no other of divine origin.  And can anyone tell why Christians should celebrate the Lord’s resurrection (if, that is what they are in fact doing when they assemble every Sunday) fifty-two times a year, and forget the POWER of His death, burial, and resurrection only once, twice, or twelve times?  He that can do this will NOT be lacking in a lively imagination, however defective in judgment, or in an acquaintance with the New Testament.

All the arguments I ever known advanced in support of the infrequent participation in the Lord’s Supper appear to me to be destitute of reason or force.  To advance the notion that the early church participated EVERY Sunday (and Sunday only) because of the continual persecutions that then raged or because they thought that any Sunday might be their last is ridiculous!  Are we not now in such danger in this world we live in?  Ought we not to live as if every Lord’s Day is our last, did not the apostles of the first century so teach their pupils?  Was not the church of the first three centuries, before Catholicism raised its ugly head, meet generally under persecution most, if not all, the time?  If they attended had not attended when the command to assemble under the most abhorrent circumstances existed, who could ever think it does not so exist, today?  Do we go to the tombs and crawl in the grave rows to tell where the church was meeting secretly as did the Church of Christ in Rome for two centuries?  If the Church of the first century attended then under that type of unbelievable circumstance, can we EVER think ourselves acceptable when we miss the table of the Lord because of a headache?  Does God require the greatest work at His people’s hands, when He gives least opportunity?  Or does He require least work, when He gives the greatest opportunity for it?  What kind of a master must God be, if this be the case?  The purpose of the weekly remembrance was and is to KEEP us Christians from the influence of the world and its acceptance, not to find a way for the world’s approval??  Let us flip-flop the argument to what was really the truth.  The early Church of Christ was commanded to partake of the Lord’s Supper, weekly, as their souls were in greater danger from the more hurtful alliances sin would bring—for this observance reminds all who partake that the bread represents our acknowledgment of participating in sin-which CAUSED the Lord to have His body pierced- our partaking of the contents of the cup doing nothing BUT remind us that His blood is the God-given means for God’s amnesia to our sin??  It is a time of rejoicing!!  It would seem more hurtful to our souls than offensive to the Savior to decline this observance if for no other reason than self-examination and refreshment of hope this partaking brings to our hearts??  One would think a person would want to partake MORE often, than less!!  When we partake, the peace gained and joy received by participation, because of the knowledge of what each element of the Supper contains, is a bolster, not a deterrent, to greater obedience.   The Roman Church is first of all not invited to the table, teaches its adherents to partake every day even though now they do not partake for the proper reason (it never brings forgiveness of sin), uses the proper elements (they use fermented wine not fruit of the vine), not partaking as Christ commanded. Her children, the Baptist, Methodist, Presbyterian, and all the rest of her 600+ divisions meet 99% of the time with their table unfurnished.  They cannot meet to remember their sins having been forgiven, for they have never met the blood that forgives!!

Series NavigationBreaking Bread – The Meaning of the Lord’s Supper Part 6 >>Breaking Bread – The Meaning of the Lord’s Supper Part 8 >>
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Joe David Wilson

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