Take, eat; this is my body, which is broken for you; this do in remembrance of me.”1 Corinthians 11:24
When was the last time you partook of the Lord’s Table? Is it important today? Through the years I have noticed that some denominations have abandon this ordinance, while others continue it on a weekly basis. There are two ordinances that the church had as important for believers. That of the Lord’s Table and water baptism. I have rarely heard why there is such a difference in the Lord’s Table within the church and it warrants some research as to why it has stopped in some congregations altogether. It seems to be a subject that is not being taught. I can remember how congregations argued about the wine and how it should not be a stumbling block for those who have issues with alcohol. Thus, grape juice was used instead of wine. Then, there was the case of spreading germs from the cup, so individual small glass cups came on the scene, then came the disposable plastic cups. Then came the argument of those who were not Christians partaking of the Lord’s Table. Maybe what the Apostle Paul had stated beforehand in chapter 11 should be of interest to all Christians as to why it is not a part of the church ordinances today.
The question is that of order in the church. The apostle Paul had stated, “Let all things be done decently and in order,” [see 1 Corinthians 14:40]. This is the biggest issue that the church has and that is to have things done decently and in order. But let us remember that Paul in verse 2 of chapter 11 of 1st Corinthians stated to “keep the ordinances, as I delivered them to you.” The early church was a Pentecostal church moving in the gifts of the Spirit and at times got disorderly in its function. Paul was correcting the church in regard to Christian conduct. Keeping that in mind, He exclaims who is the head of every man and woman. Women in the early church wore veils as a covering over their heads. This was a sign of submission as to the order or hierarchy. Call it a pecking order if you like. For a Christian the order of the head is God, then Christ, Man, Woman, and Child. It is acknowledging and adhering to the placement of authority. It was traditional for woman to wear hats and veils in the church, so they do not dishonor their head [see 1 Corinthians 11:5]. Notice that Paul did not say they could not pray or prophesy, only that they honor the headship of God by covering their head.
We must also remember that there were divisions within the church at Corinth. Paul even mentioned that there were different sects and that they were abusing the Lord’s Table. Paul mentions that some were hungry and or drunk and asked the question if they do not have houses to eat in. In otherwards, the Lord’s Table is not the place for eating and drinking like you do at home. The real issue became that of scorning the church of God by Lording it over those who have and those who have not. This is not the purpose of the Lord’s Table. The purpose was in remembrance of the Lord’s death and sacrifice. The other issue is unworthiness in the manner of partaking of the Lord’s Table. Those who partake unworthily are guilty of the body and blood of the Lord and this is serious. We must remember that Christ was the final sacrifice for our sins, and he has provided healing in the atonement. We cannot take this lightly, for it is the only way we can be reconciled back to God.
The apostle Paul gives us the answer to think twice about the Lord’s Table, for this speaks of judgement upon ourselves.
For he that eateth and drinketh unworthily, eateth and drinketh judgement to himself, not discerning the Lord’s body.”1 Corinthians 11:29
Self-judgment is important to avoid the chastisement of God, and Paul states that is why many are weak, sick, and sleep, [see 1 Corinthians 11:30]. If we do not judge ourselves, then the Lord will Judge us through chastisement. The benefits of the new covenant through Christ are forgiveness of our sin, and healing from all diseases. Christ gave his body and blood for all mankind. Christ is the living bread that came down from heaven.
I am the living bread which came down from heaven: if any man eat of this bread, he shall live for ever: and the bread that I will give is my flesh, which I will give for the life of the world.”John 6:51
The cup is the blood of the New Testament, which is shed for many for the remission of sins, [see Matthew 26:28]. We receive eternal life and remission of sins through the Lord’s Table. Paul states as often as we eat the bread and drink the cup of Christ, we proclaim the Lord’s death until He comes back [see 1 Corinthians 11:26]. Let us always examine ourselves in prayer before our Lord and ask for forgiveness of our sins before we partake of the Lord’s Table. We are justified through His blood.
Being justified freely by his grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus:”Romans 3:24
This is good news for all mankind. Eternal life, redemption, and forgiveness of sins. Can we have the Lord’s Table at home. The answer is yes. Many seniors who are home bound take the Lord’s Table at home. A pastor, elder, or someone at home who is taught the basics of the ordinances can perform the Lord’s Table at home. Many Christian missionaries around the world take the Lord’s Table at home. I had a friend who was to become a priest share the Lord’s Table with me. He had a dedicated place in his home for the Lord’s Table. The importance is in the acknowledgement of what Christ did for us on the cross in that we no longer live onto ourselves, but unto the Lord.
And that he died for all, that they which live should not henceforth live unto themselves, but unto him which died for them, and rose again.“2 Corinthians 5:15
We are consecrated to God, and the Lord’s Table confirms this because we believe in the death and resurrection of our Lord. This is Holy Communion with our precious Lord. This is connecting with our Lord because He loved us so much that He gave us His life. Christ in me is to live, to die is to gain Christ. We die to our self-will in order to live for Christ. Taking of the Lord’s Table is to draw close to God knowing that our conscience is cleansed, and our hearts are purified. We do this in remembrance of our Lord and to ever be consecrated for his purpose. Let us always remember our Lord by partaking of the Lord’s Table with a clean and pure heart.
You can buy grape juice and communion bread is available to buy on Amazon. Have a quiet time in prayer before the Lord and examine yourself before the Lord. Once you have prayed then read verses 24 and 25 of 1 Corinthians of chapter 11. Thank God for giving us His son for the remissions of our sins and eternal life through Jesus Christ. Take and eat the bread and drink the wine. Then thank Him for the blessings of the new covenant and that we are a new creation in Christ Jesus. Keep it simple and you will be blessed.
If any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new. And all things are of God, who hath reconciled us to himself by Jesus Christ, and hath given to us the ministry of reconciliation; “2 Corinthians 5:17