Lessons Of A Lifetime

Communion Established
Or
In Remembrance Of Me
Sunday Jan. 1, 2023

Scripture To Consider:
“When the hour had come, Jesus sat down, and the twelve apostles with Him. Then He said to them, ‘With fervent desire I have desired to eat this Passover with you before I suffer; for I say to you, I will no longer eat of it until it is fulfilled in the kingdom of God.’ Then He took the cup, and gave thanks, and said, ‘Take this and divide it among yourselves; for I say to you, I will not drink of the fruit of the vine until the kingdom of God comes.’

“And He took bread, gave thanks and broke it, and gave it to them, saying, ‘This is My body which is given for you; do this in remembrance of Me.’ Likewise He also took the cup after supper, saying, ‘This cup is the new covenant in My blood, which is shed for you. But behold, the hand of My betrayer is with Me on the table. And truly the Son of Man goes as it has been determined, but woe to that man by whom He is betrayed!’ Then they began to question among themselves, which of them it was who would do this thing.”

“Now there was also a dispute among them, as to which of them should be considered the greatest. And Jesus said to them, ‘The kings of the Gentiles exercise lordship over them, and those who exercise authority over them are called benefactors. But not so among you; on the contrary, he who is greatest among you, let him be as the younger, and he who governs as he who serves. For who is greater, he who sits at the table, or he who serves? Is it not he who sits at the table? Yet I am among you as the One who serves. But you are those who have continued with Me in My trials. And I bestow upon you a kingdom, just as My Father bestowed one upon Me, that you may eat and drink at My table in My kingdom, and sit on thrones judging the twelve tribes of Israel.’”  Luke 22.14-30

Something To Consider:
In the upper room just days before His death and only hours before His arrest, Jesus established the first communion. Therefore, the drinking of the cup and the breaking of bread should always be a solemn and serious time of remembrance for all true believers, even more so as we approach the end of this age.

The apostle Paul wrote in 1 Corinthians 11.26, reminding all true believers, “For as often as you eat this bread and drink this cup, you proclaim the Lord’s death till He comes.” In verse 28 Paul exhorted, “But let a man [woman or young person] examine himself [or herself].” Communion, also known as the Lord’s Supper, is to be a time of spiritual self-examination and spiritual inward reflection.

And with spiritual self-examination and spiritual inward reflection, usually if we are honest, confession of sins should follow! Samuel, a prophet of God, wrote in 2 Samuel 24.10; “I have sinned greatly in that I have done; and now, I beseech [pray] O LORD, take away the iniquity of Your servant; for I have done very foolishly.” How often or when was the last time we were honest before God by seeking His forgiveness of our sins?

Something Else To Consider:
Samuel, though an honored Old Testament prophet of God for Israel, sinned, missed the mark of God’s holiness, and thought of himself as a servant, and indentured slave. Therefore, he cried out in remembrance of God’s holiness and God’s righteousness, and in confession of his personal sin, seeking God’s forgiveness. How much more important for us to do no less in these days of abounding lawlessness?

King David on numerous occasions cried out to the Lord in confession of his sin. In Psalm 32.5, David wrote, “I acknowledged my sin to You [God], and my iniquity I have not hidden. I said, ‘I will confess my transgressions to the LORD,’ and You [God] forgave the iniquity of my sin.” David was considered by God, a man after the heart of God. Can that label be applied to us at this time in our lives? And if not, why not?

Something More To Consider:
And yet, in the midst of our Scripture to consider, on this serious and solemn occasion, the disciples still had much to learn. Even in the approaching shadow of the cross of which Jesus had explained that he must suffer, the disciples chose to debate over which of them was to be the greatest in the kingdom. Yes, according to the Word of God, we all have sinned and still come short of the glory of God!

And this concern for who among them was the greatest was spoken even with Jesus’ words still lingering in the air, “This is My body which is given for you; do this in remembrance of Me.” But it would take His death, His resurrection, His ascension, and the Holy Spirit coming upon them before they would finally learn the lesson of greatness within the kingdom. What will it take for us to learn that lesson of a lifetime?

What will it take for us in remembrance of Christ, to be found by God on a regular basis, confessing our sin, confessing our iniquity, and confessing our trespasses? What are we doing in remembrance of what Jesus has done for us? As we begin a new 2023 year, do we need to confess our personal sin as did David, as did the prophets, the disciples, and so many others down through the centuries?

Jeremiah, another Old Testament prophet, declared in Jeremiah 3.25; “We lie down in our shame, and our confusion covers us; for we have sinned against the LORD our God.” Are we able to lie down at night in our shame over our sin, or in confidence of our forgiveness through true biblical confession of our sin? Do we live in confusion because we refuse or delay the required confession of our sin against God? Forgiveness is always only one prayer away!

A Few Final Words:
The prodigal son of Luke 15.18, after being disgusted over his shame and lying down night after night in his confusion, proclaimed; “Father, I have sinned against heaven [God] and against you.” And according to the father, his son, who was spiritually lost per the acknowledgment of the father, and who was spiritually dead, was now found and now spiritually alive! How many of us this day fall under the same shame and guilt?

Through the son’s confession of his sin, all his shame, all his guilt, and all his confusion were gone. In a moment of time, he was forgiven, and his sins were forgotten by his earthly father, as is our sin when confessed. According to God, after confession our sin is cast into a sea of forgetfulness from God’s perspective.

As often as we partake of communion as believers, we do so in remembrance of Jesus’ sacrificial atoning death. As often as we partake of communion as true believers, we do so in remembrance of His soon return and our obtaining our promised eternal reward. And yet, here on earth, Jesus can be our exceeding great reward.

According to our Scripture to consider,“And Jesus took bread, gave thanks and broke it, and gave it to them, saying, ‘This is MY body which is given for you; do this in remembrance of Me.’ Are we living our lives this brand-new year in remembrance of Jesus and what He has accomplished as it concerns the forgiveness of our personal sins? There is no better time than now, to make the removal of all guilt, shame, and confusion a reality in our lives!

Prayer:
Our Father in heaven, may we often remember Your Son’s sacrifice in order to bring us the forgiveness through confession You require of us all. Thank You Father for the promise of salvation and a place prepared for us in Your eternal kingdom. May we this new year be found seeking first Your kingdom and the righteousness of Jesus our Lord and soon coming King. In Him Always, Amen!

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