First Baptist Church Marshallville
Friday, November 22, 2019
Rooted in the Past -- Growing Into Our Future

From the Under Shepherd June 22, 2014

  
 
The Lord's Supper has been observed by the Church from the earliest of times.  We find a reference in Acts 2:42 as to what likely was the celebration of the Supper on the Day of Pentecost.  The earliest writing on the subject is in 1 Corinthians 11, where Paul says "he delivered" to the Corinthians what he "received from the Lord" (1 Corinthians 11:23).  The Supper, in various traditions, is called "Eucharist" which means "thanksgiving"; "Communion" which derives from the word for "community"; and the Lord's Supper. 
 
Theologically, the Supper has been interpreted as the bread and wine actually becoming the body and blood of Jesus (called transubstantiation, the Roman Catholic position); as "true body and blood of Christ...really present in the Supper of our Lord under the form of bread and wine" (consubstantiation); from the Augsburg Confession of 1530, the Lutheran position); and as a memorial of Jesus' death (Baptist position; we call the Supper an ordinance, not a sacrament).
 
Jesus instituted the Supper as a part of the Passover meal he celebrated with his disciples.  It is recorded in all of the gospels, with John recording an extended teaching session during the supper.  The context of the meal adds richness and depth to our understanding of what Jesus did for us through his death, for the Lamb slain as part of the Passover meal shed its blood in order that the death angel would "pass over" the houses of the Hebrews in Egypt because the blood was on the doorposts of their homes.
 
As we observe this Supper, we remember the death of Jesus.  But we also are to remember his resurrection, ascension, and his return for us someday.