HOLY COMMUNION (Lenten 4)
As yesterday was the first Sunday in the month, we celebrated Communion in church. (Personally I wish it was weekly). As Lent is all about REFLECTION, FASTING & REPENTANCE, preparing us for Easter and the death and resurrection of Jesus, I thought I would write this blog about HOLY COMMUNION.
Sadly many Christians especially Evangelicals and Pentecostals have not been given much teaching about Communion really, I think that is one of the reasons many people say, it is just a “religious exercise” and doesn’t have much meaning. some churches only serve Communion quarterly, I seem to think for this reason as well. I really don’t think it is a good practice to let small children participate in Communion unless they understand what it is about, and that they have sincerely responded to the claims of Christ upon their life.
The Apostle Paul tells us that we need to prepare our hearts to participate in Communion, we read in 1 Cor. 11:27-32 NLT So anyone who eats this bread or drinks this cup of the Lord UNWORTHILY is guilty of sinning against the body and blood of the Lord. That is why you should EXAMINE yourself before eating the bread and drinking the cup. For if you eat the bread or drink the cup without honoring the body of Christ, you are eating and drinking God’s JUDGEMENT upon yourself. That is why many of you are WEAK AND SICK and some have even died.
But if we would examine ourselves, we would not be judged by God in this way. Yet when we are judged by the Lord, we are being disciplined so that we will not be condemned along with the world.
Paul told the Corinthian Christians that they must not partake of Communion unworthily, what does this mean, I would suggest, firstly, we must be born again, and as Believers, we must not have unconfessed sin in our life. I am reminded of Psalm 68:18 NIV If I had not confessed the sin in my heart, the Lord would not have listened.
The ideal thing is to have our heart prepared before we leave home to attend church. I pray daily David’s prayer in Psalm 139:23-24 NLT Search me, O God, and know my heart;
test me and know my anxious thoughts. Point out anything g that offends you, and lead me along the path of everlasting life. If you didn’t do it at home, make sure you do it prior to Communion.
Then I list the sins I am aware of, (and any others the Lord may see in my heart (that I can’t remember), and claim His forgiveness. 1 John 1:9 AMP N.T. If we [freely] admit that we have sinned and confess our sins, He is faithful and just (true to His own nature and promises) and will forgive our sins [dismiss our lawlessness] and [continuously] cleanse us from all unrighteousness [everything not in conformity to His will in purpose, thought, and action].
Then the assurance comes and I know I am forgiven. I KNOW WITHOUT A SHADOW OF DOUNT “IT IS WELL WITH MY SOUL”, and my heart is prepared to partake of Communion. I do not want to experience the judgment of God on my life because I partook unworthily, neither do I want to be sick and weakly.
Every time we come to Communion there are four things we need to do:
LOOK BACK TO CALVARY AND MEDITATE ON THE FINISHED WORK OF CHRIST.
LOOK INWARD, AND SEARCH OUR HEARTS
APPROPRIATE (TAKE POSSESSION) MORE AND MORE OF OUR GLORIOUS INHERITANCE OBTAINED FOR US THROUGH CHRIST’S DEATH AND RESURRECTION.
LOOK FORWARD TO THE LORD’S RETURN FOR HIS CHURCH, FOR WE MUST REGULARLY TAKE COMMUNION “UNTIL HE COMES 1 COR. 11:26.
So as we move through Lent and reflect on the death and resurrection of Jesus, may we deliberately consider fasting and repentance, indicating our determination we want to change and be more like Jesus, in thought and word and action, AMEN.