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The Lord’s Supper

Introduction:

What is the Lord’s Supper?

  1. Instituted: Matthew 26: 26-29
  2. Communion: 1 Corinthians 10:16
  3. From this example have derived many ways of observing the Lord’s Supper:  SHEET

Discussion:

    If we follow the Bible, our worship will be plain and simple for all to participate in.

  1. Why Do We Partake of The Lord’s Supper?  Are we commanded to do so?
  1. Commanded: (We learn by direct commands, example, necessary inference – Bible Auth.).
    1. Matt: 28:18-20 - Jesus Commanded Apostles to teach us and for us to observe all things that they had been commanded.
    1. I Cor. 11:23-26 Paul follows through on Christ’s command and has told the Corinthians previously and now again, about the need to partake of the Lord’s Supper.
    2. “For as oft as ye eat this bread, and drink this cup, ye do shew the Lord’s death till he come.”
    3. We also have an example of the Christians in Acts 2:42 observing this commandment.  (Note: this was not a meal… vs. 46 is a meal.)
    • Answer:  We partake to show or remember Christ’s death.  Yes, it is a command.
  1. When Do We Partake of the Lord’s Supper?
  1. The First Day of the Week:
    1. Acts 20:7 – Christians met to break bread.
    1. John 20:19“Being the first day of the week” – Understood that was when they met…

      a. Ex. Groundhog Day Movie- Cold Shower… Of course, it’s Tuesday….

    1. Acts 2 - Day of Pentecost – Sunday. Day of the Starting of the Church – The rising of Christ’s Body.
    2. All makes sense when we consider Christ was risen on the first day of the week. Mk 16:2,9; Jn:20:1
    3. History also tells us that the early church always partook of the Lord's Supper and gave upon the first day of every week. Pliny, in his Book X, Justin Martyr in his Second Apology For the Christians and Tertullian's De Ora pg. 135, testify that it was practiced universally by congregations. Weekly assemblies have always been a part of the Christian service to God. 
    1. Why would the church have held to assembling on the first day of the week, if  the beginning of the church had been upon a Saturday?
    • Answer: We take the Lord’s Supper on the First Day of the Week – Sunday.
  1. Is it the Real Body of Christ?  this bread is my body… and this fruit of the vine my blood"
    1. Not Literal
    1. Christ said that He was a vine - John 15:1
    2. Christ said that He was a door - John 10:9
    • Answer: The doctrines of Transubstantiation and Consubstantiation are not in the Bible. Jesus is not bread, water, wine or a door. The representation of the Lord's Supper as the fruit of the vine and the bread is simply figurative.
  1. Is the fruit of the Vine Alcoholic?  Or Was it then?
    1. The Lord’s Supper was instituted during Passover and “the feast of unleavened Bread”.
    1. Jesus took the elements of this feast and applied them to His memorial.  He took the unleavened bread, blessed it then took the cup and blessed it.  The fruit of the vine was actually that.  Unleavened drink.  No fruit of the vine was allowed fermentation during the feast.  Use of anything fermented (containing Leaven or yeast) during this time, would have resulted in one being “Cut off from Israel.”  Ex. 12:14-20
    1. Heb 4:15 - For we have not a high priest that cannot be touched with the feeling of our infirmities; but one that hath been in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin.  Jesus did not violate the law and sin by drinking a leavened drink.
    • Answer: The Fruit of the Vine was not and should not be Alcoholic.
  1. Should the Lord’s Supper Be Offered Only Once on Sunday? - I Cor. 11:33
    1. We are all part of the Body of the Church. 
    1. Many congregations meet at other times and offer Communion.  Other members that attend here, meet similarly in the evening when they can attend, to partake of the supper.
    1. Orderliness is commanded – (I Cor. 11:33), 14:23, 33, 40.
    2. Brothers and Sisters communing together and worshipping in Spirit and Truth.
    • Answer: Yes, it is acceptable to offer the Lord’s Supper more than once on Sunday.
  1. Who Can Partake of the Lord’s Supper?
    1. Christians – As a command, those who have been baptized into Christ should take Communion.
    2. The Situation of Non-Christians
    1. Not being Christians they may not properly understand the memorial of Christ’s sacrifice.
    1. They may also partake in an improper manner, as we shall discuss.
    2. I Cor. 10:16Paul Tells us The Lord’s Supper is a communion with the Lord’s body and blood.  That is a fellowshipping with him.  It is my scriptural belief that only Christians can have fellowship with Christ. Though… they may partake in a proper manner. (Discuss in moment)
    3. Consider the institution of the Passover, a type of the Lord’s Supper. Ex. 12:43-51 
    4. Consider also that one needed to be circumcized to partake = Col. 2:8-2:12 – Conclusion?  The non-Christian should not partake until they are Christian.  Even if they can follow manner.
    • Answer: For a Christian it is their duty to partake of the Lord’s Supper.  It is also the Duty of the Church to explain what the memorial is and the proper way to partake if there are non-christians who might potentially partake.
  1. Does partaking make our sins forgiven?
    1. Many Denominations Teach this Doctrine.
    1. Catholics teach Forgiveness of sins by participating in Mass.
    1. Different Protestant Groups teach the Lord’s Supper has Special Powers.
    1. The Bible Teaches One thing about the Lord’s Supper.
    1. It is a memorial done in memory of Christ's death and resurrection
      1. I Corinthians 11:26 – “For as often as ye eat this bread, and drink this cup, ye do shew the Lord’s death till he come.”
    1. Forgiveness  comes from Baptism and Obedience.
    1. Acts 2:38 – “Then Peter said unto them, Repent and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins…”
    1. I John 1:7-2:1-4 – In Christ, those who work at obeying the Lord’s commands are forgiven by the Lord.
    • Answer: The Lord’s Supper cannot forgive us our sins.  Only Baptism and Obedience can.

VII.  Can a Christian who has sinned or has not repented take the Lord’s Supper?

    1. Who is a sinner?
    1. I John 3: 9  - “Whosoever is born of God doth not commit sin; for his seed remaineth in him: and he cannot sin, because he is born of God.”  
    2. Compare this to: I John 1:7-2:1-4 (read already).  These verses say we all sin.  Is this an error in the Bible?  No, I John 3:9 is referencing practiced sin, thus, we know we all sin.
    3. What is the difference between a Christian sinner and a non-Christian sinner? A Christian has an advocate he can bring his sins to in order that they may be forgiven.
    • Answer: All men are sinners - Rom. 3:23
    1. Ok, we are all sinners, But, a Christian who has not yet repented of his sins is different!!  
    1. David and Bathsheba - II Samuel 12:1-7, 13. David’s sin with Bathsheba, he knew adultry was a sin.  He knew Murder was a sin.  Heart didn’t acknowledge until Nathan pointed his sin out.
      1. Sometimes when we know something is wrong, it takes our heart awhile to acknowledge.
    1. Speeding and other sins … Rom. 13 – Gov’t Authority.
      1. Sometimes we sin and may not even be realizing it.  Uzzah, Nadab & Abihu, Paul.
    • Answer: Who is going to cast the first stone?  “Sinner, You cannot Remember Christ!”
    1. Do we have any guidelines about who should not partake?
    1. Argument against taking Lord’s supper if you have sin – 1 Cor 10:16 – 21 often used. 
      1. In context, this is talking about man’s choice to serve the world or God.  You cannot serve God and Mammon. 
      1. Only way you can truly share is if you live for Christ as a Christian and not the world.
      2. (Matt. 20:22, Matt. 26:39) You cannot partake of that Cup which is a life of service to God and partake of the Cup which is service to Sin.  To be in true Communion with Christ you must live a life as a Christian.
      3. Taking 1 Cor. 10:16-21 to mean someone who has sinned can’t partake of the Lord’s Supper is out of Context.
    1. The True Guideline for partaking of the Lord’s Supper is 1 Cor. 11:20-29.
      1. Context, not talking about Christians with sin in their lives, admonition is to focus on Christ instead of their stomachs!
    • Answer: If a Christian can’t focus on Christ during the Lord’s Supper, they should not partake. This is the only reason a Christian has to not partake! 
    • Warning to Non-Christians! – You may be God fearing Like Cornelius!  And you may partake with your mind on Christ.  However, until you are baptized, you are not in Christ, nor in full communion with Him.
  1. Closing
  1. The Lord’s Supper is a memorial of his death and his flesh and blood upon the cross.
  2. Christians are commanded to take it on the first day of the week.
  3. Unleavened items we use to partake of memorial are clear: Unleavened bread, Unleavened grape juice.
  4. Christians with sin in their lives are still required to partake of the Lord’s Supper.  Sin does not exclude.
  5. The only Christians who shouldn’t partake of Communion, are those who can’t focus on Christ’s Death.
  • If you are a non-Christian how are your sins forgiven?:

Mark 16:16: “If you believe and are baptized, you shall be saved…”

  • If you are a Christian how are your sins forgiven?

I John 2:1-2: “ My little children, these things write I unto you, that ye sin not.  And if any man sin, we have an advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous:  And He is the propitiation for our sins: and not for our’s only, but also for the sins of the whole world.”

 

The Lord’s Supper - Communion 

ROMAN CATHOLICS (and Episcopalians)

Daily mass is observed and usually required as a "perpetual sacrifice of Christ's blood". Better known as Holy Eucharist. To the Catholics, the bread becomes the actual body of Christ and the wine His actual blood. This is known as "Transubstantiation".  Sins are forgiven as part of Mass. 

LUTHERANS

Their teaching on the Lord's Supper is distinctively peculiar. They believe in "Consubstantiation". When the Lutheran priest blesses the bread, they say that the true body and blood of our Lord Jesus Christ are under the bread and wine. 

METHODIST

The Lord's Supper is taken once a quarter. 

BAPTIST

They believe in closed communion. Only those who have been voted into the church can take the communion. They do not offer the Lord's Supper upon every first day of the week. 

PRESBYTERIANS

Their taking of the Lord's Supper is usually every quarter. A collection for the "poor" is associated with the observance of the Lord's Supper. 

JEHOVAH WITNESSES

The Lord's Supper is taken once a year after sundown on the "exact day" of the year Christ died. Unleavened bread and fermented wine are used for the communion, and only those of the "heavenly elect" (144,000) can partake of the Lord's Supper.   

MORMONS

Mormons meet on Sunday for worship which includes weekly observance of the Lord's Supper. They use light bread and water instead of unleavened bread and grape juice.  

SEVENTH-DAY ADVENTISTS

Their worship service is held on the Sabbath which begins Friday at sundown and lasts until Saturday at sundown. The Lord's Supper is usually observed once a quarter and always preceded by the observance of foot-washing.  

NAZARENES

The only thing different about this religious group from the others is in their observance of the Lord's Supper. The minister is to invite "all those who have with true repentance forsaken their sins and have believed in Christ for salvation" to take communion.  

PENTECOSTALS

The unique teaching that separates the pentecostals from other religious bodies is their divine healing that supposedly takes place while they partake of the Lord's Supper. They believe that the communion is a quickening life of Christ for their healing.  

CHRISTIAN SCIENCE

Christian Scientists have eliminated the Lord's Supper from their worship. They hold so called communion services in the branch services twice a year, but on these occasions, neither bread nor wine is used. It is basically a type of meditation.

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