When you have communion in your church, what do you think of? Is it the ritual? Does someone read from a liturgy? Do they tell stories or instead try to explain the meaning of Communion? Do they do this from their standpoint or from what they believe is stated in scripture? What does it mean to you
At my church we have Communion each week. I’m one of five men in the rotation (occasionally a woman). And it never gets old. And you’re probably asking how that can be? Possibly because people are acquainted with some of the patterns I’ve mentioned above. But more likely is because we have more than one person doing it. And we find there are as many ways to look at communion than can be imagined.
I looked up the word communion in the WEB and found 3 scriptures that use this word. I contend that the four uses of the word have similar meanings.
(2 Corinthians 13:14 WEB) The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the communion of the Holy Spirit, [be] with you all. Amen.
Here we have all three persons of the trinity named. And there can’t be a closer fellowship when they all know and say the same thing. This is the fellowship that Jesus describes in the “Lord’s Prayer (John 17)”. And we as believers are mentioned in that prayer.
Jesus Prayer for Us
(John 17:22-26 WEB) 22And the glory which thou gavest to me, I have given to them; that they may be one, even as we are one. 23I in them, and thou in me, that they may be made perfect in one; and that the world may know that thou hast sent me, and hast loved them as thou hast loved me. 24Father, I will that they also whom thou hast given to me be with me where I am; that they may behold my glory which thou hast given to me: for thou lovedst me before the foundation of the world. 25O righteous Father, the world hath not known thee: but I have known thee, and these have known that thou hast sent me. 26And I have declared to them thy name, and will declare [it]: that the love with which thou hast loved me, may be in them, and I in them.
Can the phrase “the love with which thou hast loved me, may be in them, and I in them” be any clearer?
(2 Corinthians 6:14 WEB) Be ye not unequally yoked together with unbelievers: for what fellowship hath righteousness with unrighteousness? and what communion hath light with darkness?
Now this verse I have problems with. As a witness for Jesus I’m challenged to approach the very people identified in this verse. I have met and discipled this type of people. But not all became Christians. And sometimes I just planted seeds.
Being a witness takes time and real empathy. It can also become a burden if the person is just stringing us along. Another problem could be if we’re tempted to buy into the person’s lifestyle. That’s why verse 2 Corinthians 13:14 is so important. We need to be in communion with the Holy Spirit to avoid falling into sin ourselves.
Juice and Bread
(1 Corinthians 10:16 WEB) The cup of blessing which we bless, is it not the communion of the blood of Christ? The bread which we break, is it not the communion of the body of Christ?
This is where I ask myself if this communion with Chist is real? Is it just for the day or is it for the week? Do the members of the congregation identify with Jesus Christ and His suffering? Do they identify with His mission? Does “church” satisfy the entirety of what Christians are asked to do? What about the “great commission” in Matthew 28:18-20?
(Matthew 28:18-20 WEB) 18And Jesus came, and spoke to them, saying, All power is given to me in heaven and upon earth. 19Go ye therefore and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. 20Teaching them to observe all things whatever I have commanded you: and lo, I am with you always, [even] to the end of the world. Amen.
For me the enormity of Jesus’ sacrifice and what it means to God is beyond my imagination. What does it mean to us?
- That all our sins are forgiven; past, present, and future.
- That all the sins of mankind are forgiven.
- The sins of every generation are forgiven.
- And it’s all free!
But it’s not free to God. And it certainly wasn’t free to Jesus. And the cost to nonbelievers is eternal damnation.
For me all the points I’ve brought up about Communion are too overwhelming to ignore. And too overwhelming for me to forgive myself – because my sin also put Jesus on the cross.
But I’m assured that I have Communion with God and Christ through the Holy Spirit. And I have Communion with the saints. And I have the greatest sensation of the Holy Spirit when a lost soul comes forward for Baptism and the gift of the Holy Spirit.
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