7During the days of Jesus' life on earth, he offered up prayers and petitions with loud cries and tears to the one who could save him from death, and he was heard because of his reverent submission. 8Although he was a son, he learned obedience from what he suffered 9and, once made perfect, he became the source of eternal salvation for all who obey him Heb 5 7-9
When I was a young boy my parents picked me up from my elementary school because my grandmother had just passed away. Once inside the car I saw my sister crying and still remember to this day wondering how I should have felt about her death while doing my best to manufacture some tears.
Have you ever wondered about if and how you should feel about the death of Jesus while taking the Lords supper? Let’s consider some things about the Lords death.
Consider this. Jesus prayed with loud cries and tears before the first whip ever stung his flesh. He did not want to die and he made that known to the One who heard Him and was able to save Him. But Jesus went thru with the terrors before Him as it was written He must. Unwavering, He obeyed the Father and gave Himself up as a sacrifice for those He loved and needed to rescue from sin, even though in unison a few hours before they yelled “crucify Him”.
Consider this. In a time and place long before our existence, Jesus Christ, who claimed to be the son of God, stood before His accusers who claimed they already knew who God was and called Him a blasphemer and false prophet. Consider that those who enjoyed beating and mocking Him could care less if He was the Son of God. Consider that the men who had just nailed Him to a cross of wood were more interested in gambling for His garments than having crucified a just and holy man. Consider that all this took place that He might become the true source of Eternal salvation of those then and now, by becoming the Savior of all who would entrust their souls to Him.
Consider that our participation in the Lords supper is a sharing together in His death as His people, by remembering that His death means the purification of our sins and ultimate salvation.
How should you feel when taking the Lords supper? Ponder over the words of the song we sing about His sacrifice. Listen to the prayers offered for His body and blood when taking the supper, and read the inspired words of the bible that have reference to His death and think about what it is to have such a Savior. Do this with a sincere mind and heart and you will know exactly how you ought to feel.
Bruce Austin September 2009
This moved me to tears! These are the this we all need to consider about our Lord every day not only at communion time.
Thank you! Bruce for sharing this with me and others.
I would like to use this the next time I preside at the Table.
God Loves Us All……..
When I was searching the net for a good communion talk I came across the following that touched my heart and may work also for you. Just search for: “Night, With Ebon Pinion” By Matt DeVore.
I would also like to suggest that many of our old hymns will touch our hearts and prepair our minds for communion when they are read with feeling.
A widowed mother sacrificed in many ways, such as taking in washings, so that she could send her boy to college.
Finally the day came for his graduation, and she went to see him receive his diploma.
As he looked out over the audience he was unwilling to claim his mother because of the shabby dress that she wore.
She didn’t fit in with the beautiful clothing worn by the parents of his friends.
When the graduation was over he didn’t seek her out and proudly introduce her to his friends, but rather he slipped off quietly to celebrate with his classmates.
Tom Mooney was involved in a dynamiting, back in 1916, where several people were killed. The evidence pointed so directly toward him that after a time he was arrested, convicted, and sent to the state penitentiary.
His wife then began what proved to be a thirty-year long effort to free her husband from prison.
During those years she worked to support herself.
At times she could find no other employment than that of a scrub woman.
Constantly she was seeing everybody of importance, everybody that might have any influence, trying desperately somehow to achieve her husband’s release from prison.
Finally, after thirty long years she stirred up enough feeling that he was allowed to go free.
Within one year, he had left her behind, found another woman and married her.
These are stories of UNREQUITED LOVE –un-returned love.
Perhaps the HARSHEST of all pain is caused by love that is desired but never received.
The largest percentage of the world give Jesus unrequited love. No love in return for his great love and sacrifice for us. Many times we somehow feel that we deserve all that he has done for us. Or that his sacrifice wasn’t so big after all. Mall Gibson did a great job of illustrating much of Jesus’ pain but unrequited love, the worse of all pain can not be shown it can only be felt in the heart.
Plastic Easter egg
One Easter Sunday the kindergarten teacher explained that Jesus had died and came back alive. That is called the resurrection. In the spring time there are many similar resurrections where things that were dead have come back to life. She gave each child a plastic Easter egg and told them to go out into the yard and find something that has like a resurrection, put it in the egg and come back in and tell the class how this reminds them of the resurrection of Christ. One child found a butterfly, another blade of grass etc. Later, as each child was telling how this reminded them of the resurrection the class finally turned to Tommy. Tommy had Down syndrome and when it was his turn he opened his egg and there was nothing in it. The other kids started to laugh. But Tommy said quite emphatically, “The tomb was empty after Jesus was resurrected.”
The angel said to the women, “Do not be afraid, for I know that you are looking for Jesus, who was crucified. He is not here; he has risen, just as he said. Come and see the place where he lay. Then go quickly and tell his disciples: ‘ Matt 28:5-7
BLOOD OF THE COVENANT Mk 14:22
A covenant is a sacred, binding, agreement
Covenants have existed since the beginning of time
Many ancient covenants consisted of 8 parts. Only have time to speak of cutting and bleeding
Like early American Indians, ancient people cut wrists, bound arms, now part of me is in you.
Pledge if you ever need my help I will be there for you.
Scar shows that if you pick on me you have someone else to consider.
Veils were to hide beauty; girl might be ugly, after marriage ware a ring, body sign, got a man to protect me.
God made covenant with Israel. Men wore a scar, impossible for God to bleed, animals died in his place. In NT Jesus did bleed. Man bleeds figuratively, circumcision of heart.
When we common think of suffering, love, being saved, and becoming Jesus’ blood brother.
NEVER ENOUGH SEEING
God said in Eccl l: 8 “The eye never has enough of seeing nor the ear its fill of hearing.” In so many ways this is true. How many times have we marveled at beautiful sunsets or stood amazed as we examined the finger prints of a new born baby? Over and over again we’ve enjoyed the beauty of a flower and kept our eyes glued at the splendor of a rainbow. Yet to some degree our eyes loose their interest in marvelous things that we see over and over again. When we first see the ocean our mouths drop open with amazement but the person that lives in a ship seldom gets very excited about the endless expanse of water. The person that lives in the mountains is more apt to see a difficult climb than to grandeur of it all. Jesus said that a prophet is not with out reward except in his own country. In other words, prophets are acknowledged as being someone special, every place they travel except when they are back home among those people who had seen them day after day as they grew up. I believe this same principle is true with regard to the communion. To many it is, yes to all of us it should be an event that we can never hear enough of. Communion should be something our eyes should never get their fill of seeing yet because it is so common there is a danger that it becomes common, mundane, and routine. Look again. Pay close attention. Desire a heart that is moved with the wonder of it all. Scrape away the calluses of the humdrum and be thrilled at the marvel of this event.
The Tree of Life
The Bible often uses metaphors – a figure of speech where one thing is spoken as if it were another in order to shed more light and magnify the subject. “The world is a stage.” In Mat 26:26, 28 Jesus said that this bread and juice was his body and blood. Obviously it was not because he was holding the bread and juice in his hands.
I might say this is me. Obviously it is not because I’m flesh and blood. This is paper and plastic. But it could be argued that this is not Lloyd or Maurice, it’s me. It looks like me. It sometimes takes the place of me and it does things for me that I can not do for myself.
In the garden of Eden God placed the tree of life. Man sinned and was prevented from eating of it. However, at the other end of the Bible we find that it will be offered to us again. (Rev 2:7). Luke 9 take up cross daily. To him who overcomes, I will give the right to eat from the tree of life, which is in the paradise of God. I was surprised to find that there are two Greek words for tree. One is a living, growing tree the other is the wood products of a tree. In Rev 2:7 it is not the living tree that is the tree of life but the product of the tree. I believe that the tree of life in heaven is the cross of Christ. Jesus had to die on the cross in order to give us life. We must crucify our selves (Rom 6); take up our cross daily (Lk 9) in order to partake of the tree of life.
As we celebrate the crucifixion of our Lord, we need to think not only of the gift of salvation from the penalty of our sins but also of the gift of eternal life which his death on the cross made possible for us.