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April 2011

 
 

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April 2011

April 3, 2011

The Lord’s Supper is a Christian practice decreed by our Savior Jesus Christ to his Church; understanding it is crucial to treating it with responsibility. Being a spiritual act, it can only be understood by people who are born again. The Lord’s Supper is not an order of the Church but a commandment of God and is between each believer and the Lord. The purpose of the Lord’s Supper is diverse and complex:

1. Remembering the Lord

Forgetfulness is a natural phenomenon, creating space in our memory for new information. Old information, not being regularly mentioned, is gone independent of our will. Remembering them periodically has the role of actualizing and maintaining them in our memory, in this way giving them value, honor, and respect. It is remarkable that the Lord personally asked us to remember Him through the practice of the Lord’s Supper (1 Cor. 11:25). Every time we commune, we relive the reality of His death through the two elements that symbolize it: the broken bread for His body and the cup for His blood. That is why practicing the Lord’s Supper unthinkingly, lacking the passion of reliving His death, thinking about anything else, is blasphemy. For this reason an unbeliever cannot partake, because someone who has not accepted the King in his heart cannot have passion for Him. The Lord’s Supper is not a mechanical act; it isn’t an obligation for strangers. The Lord’s Supper is similar to the brokenness that a son feels going to his mother’s grave, a place where he’s inundated with memories, where he cries, where his past is unfolding itself in a matter of moments. The Lord’s Supper is the monument of love, the spark of remembrance, of gratitude; it is the humble and conscious bow in the face of Majesty. The nature of remembrance is not shown through the believer’s outward act of communion but by the attitude of his heart, his throbbing sentiments that only the heavens can understand. It is a great honor to have communion, to remember Him, to feel his undeserved suffering.

2. Personal Sanctification

Participation in the Lord’s Supper with unconfessed sins makes that particular believer responsible for the Lord’s death (1 Cor. 11:27). The solution is not delaying communion until the next month – nowhere in the Bible is this method suggested. On the contrary, communion is a commandment. The solution is that “Everyone ought to examine themselves before they eat of the bread and drink from the cup” (v. 28). The Lord’s Supper compels us to personal sanctification. The lack of maturity and knowledge of Scripture exposes the believer to embrace certain customs and unbiblical traditions under the pretext “We’ll remain in what we’ve received.” That is what worldly people say when we call them to the faith: “We’ll remain in what we’ve received.” But what have they received? Traditions, religious customs … Only spiritual pride prevents people from exposing themselves to the Gospel while displaying a false scriptural stability and spiritual achievement.

3. Church Participation

“Because there is one loaf, we, who are many, are one body, for we all share the one loaf”

(1 Cor. 10:17). Few things in the illustration of spiritual worship achieve brotherly fellowship at the level attained during communion with the Lord’s Supper. Believers that do not participate or that only participate at certain churches do not have spiritual fellowship and are not united in the Spirit with the local church. For this reason a believer who is in an unresolved conflict with another believer cannot impart. The Lord’s Supper demands spiritual unity. Spiritual unity depends on personal sanctification, which in turn depends on the remembrance of the Lord’s death. In His name we live in holiness and in peace with others.

The Lord’s Supper is once again upon us. How do you remember the Lord through communion? In what way do you achieve personal sanctification through confessing and abandoning sin? How do you strengthen and sustain the unity in the local church that you are a member of? The Lord’s Supper is once again upon us. “This day I call the heavens and the earth as witnesses against you that I have set before you life and death, blessings and curses. Now choose life, so that you and your children may live” (Deut. 30:19). This is our day to draw near to the Lord with repentance.

April 24

The shining moment in all of man’s history was the glorious resurrection of Jesus Christ. His resurrection gives a new and glorious perspective on life, death and eternity, proclaiming a final and complete victory over the devil, over death, and over sin. His resurrection is a confirmation from God in regards to his plan of salvation realized through Christ. The message of resurrection is glorious and complex, incomprehensible beyond words:

I. THE SAVIOR’S UNIQUENESS

“But God raised Him from the dead, freeing Him from the agony of death, because it was impossible for death to keep its hold on Him” (Acts 2:24). Death did not have authority over Christ, because it could not find any sin within Him. This is the motive that allowed him to become the divine Savior of humankind. The resurrection is a confirmation that proclaims Christ’s uniqueness among man.

II. THE UNIQUENESS OF THE SCRIPTURE

“That Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, that He was buried, that He was raised on the third day according to the Scriptures” (1 Cor. 15:3b-4) Hundreds of years prior to that message, God prophesized the birth, death, resurrection and the ascension of the coming Savior. In an uncertain world, the Bible is the only book in which you can have total faith. If only a single time something within the Bible did not come to realization, people would have lost their faith in the Scriptures. The resurrection confirms and proclaims the uniqueness of the Scriptures, and we are able to have complete faith in each word written in the Bible.

III. FORGIVENESS OF MANKIND

“He was delivered over to death for our sins and was raised to life for our justification.” (Romans 4:25) People are justified, in the face of divine justice, which transpired as a result of the realization of the death and resurrection of Christ. “Who then is the one who condemns? No one. Christ Jesus who died—more than that, who was raised to life—is at the right hand of God and is also interceding for us.” (Romans 8:34) The resurrection confirms and proclaims the salvation of mankind.

IV. THE SALVATION OF CHRISTIANS

“We were therefore buried with him through baptism into death in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, we too may live a new life.” (Romans 6:4) “And He died for all, that those who live should no longer live for themselves but for him who died for them and was raised again.” (2 Cor 5:15) We see the power and example of salvation in the spiritual death and resurrection of Christians.

V. THE SERVITUDE OF CHRISTIANS

“Paul, an apostle—sent not from men nor by a man, but by Jesus Christ and God the Father, who raised Him from the dead…” (Gal 1:1) The angel said to the women who came to visit the empty grave”

1. “Come and see” – personal edification

2. “Go and tell them”- You cannot tell them what you did not see, witnesses need to see.

VI. RAPTURE OF CHRISTIANS

“…And to wait for His Son from heaven, whom He raised from the dead—Jesus, who rescues us from the coming wrath.” (1 Thessalonians 1:10) Christians wait for the risen King who will return for them. His resurrection confirms and proclaims the coming rapture of Christians.

VII. JUDGEMENT OF MANKIND

“For He has set a day when He will judge the world with justice by the man He has appointed. He has given proof of this to everyone by raising Him from the dead.” (Acts 17:31)

We cannot forget that the method was crucification, the scope was salvation, the proof was the resurrection and His motive was us, both of us. For those who have been born again, the resurrection gives a new and glorious perspective on life, death and eternity, proclaiming a final and total victory over the devil, over death, and over sin. We are the fruits of His suffering, as well as the beneficiaries of His glory. He is our God; we praise Him and proclaim His name, saying over and over again “HE IS RISEN!”