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Identity Crisis: What it Means to Be the Bride of Christ

Apr 18, 2021 | Rev. Dr. K. Rick Baker

Celebrates the Lord’s Supper: Communion with Christ and His Church

Matthew 26:17-30

Full Service

Why do we celebrate important dates? General holidays (family day) vs. personal birthday, anniversary

The Lord’s Supper is an ordinance because it pictures the Gospel and is commanded in order to make certain Christ and His saving work remains central to the mission of the church.

Many timesBaptism - one-time initiatory vow of allegiance to Christ; Lord’s Supper - repeated renewal of your vow of allegiance

Many namessharing (1 Cor. 10:16); Lord’s Table (1 Cor. 10:21); Breaking of Bread (Acts 2:42); Thanksgiving (1 Cor. 11:24); Lord’s Supper* (1 Cor. 11:20); NOT Mass.

Many controversies— “this is my body”

- Transubstantiation (RC) – the “host” miraculously becomes the actual body and blood of Christ (Heb. 7:27)

- Consubstantiation (Luther)—the actual body and blood because Jesus said so, not because of a priest.

- Memorial-only View (Zwingli)—Christ is present spiritually and the elements are a symbol only.

- Memorial-plus View (Calvin)—“Christ’s flesh is not dragged down from heaven into the bread, we are lifted to him through the secret working of the Spirit.” (Calvin, ICR 21:1403)

Echoes and images…

Patterns/Types from Scripture that Inform Practice…

The Pattern of NOAH – saved through water –“this water symbolizes baptism that now saves you…then the pledge of a good conscience toward God.” (1 Peter 3:20f)

The Pattern of the EXODUS –first deliverance (salvation), then pass through the water (red sea), then manna—they ate the same spiritual food and drank the same spiritual drink (Christ) (1 Cor. 10:2-4) —commemorating sustenance through ongoing trust!

The Pattern of JESUS – baptized “it is proper for us to do this to fulfill all righteousness.” (Matt. 3:15), then Lord’s Table instituted at Passover to replace Passover (Matt. 26:17-30)

The Pattern of the PRIMITIVE CHURCH—“those who accepted the message and were baptized were added to their number…then breaking of bread” (Acts 2:41,42)

So, what are we really celebrating?


1. Looking Back—the renewal of REMEMBRANCE (1 Cor. 11:24)
“Do this in remembrance of ME”
Needs to be so vividly recalled that it affects the present!

2. Looking Around—the renewal of COMMITMENT (1 Cor. 10:16-17; 11:20)
“Because there is one loaf, we, who are many, are one body, for we all partake of one loaf.”
Without unity, the Lord’s Supper is just food.

3. Looking Ahead—the renewal of MISSION (1 Cor. 11:26)
“Proclaim the Lord’s death until He comes”
Without Christ, time will run out and the lost will perish.

So, who is to be invited to the Lord’s Supper?

“Participation at the Lord’s Table is open to all who have been invited (received) into the family of God through faith in the person and work of Jesus Christ and are living a life of obedience to the commands of Christ.” This would include obedience to the commands to be baptized and to love one another.

In order for the Lord’s Supper to be a renewal, there must first be the “newal”—the vow of allegiance through believer baptism.

How should you prepare for the Lord’s Supper?
- Atmosphere—solemn or celebrative?
- Attend regularly
- Examination (Repent of sins, Re-examine trust in Christ to release us not only from our sins, but the guilt of our sins, Be at peace with brethren)



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