Tag: 1st Corinthians 11:17-34

Recognizing the body of Christ!

Scripture reading for August 18th: 1st Corinthians 11:17-34

Paul next dealt with the problem of divisions in the church coming from how they were partaking of the Lord’s Supper, what we would call ‘Holy Communion’.  In that day, this sacrament was usually a part of a meal called a ‘love feast’.  The church came together to eat a meal and celebrate the Lord’s Supper.

Paul addressed their bad manners and lack of love for each other displayed during this meal.  Some were coming early and eating all the food.  Others were taking too much wine and getting drunk.  (1st Corinthians 11:20-22)  Paul warned them that they were despising God’s church and humiliating those who had nothing to eat.  This caused strife and division during a meal that was to bring unity!

Paul explained the Lord’s Supper as he had received it.  “The Lord Jesus, on the night He was betrayed, took bread, and when He had given thanks, He broke it and said, “This is My body, which is for you; do this in remembrance of Me.”  In the same way, after supper He took the cup, saying, “This cup is the new covenant in My blood; do this, whenever you drink it, in remembrance of me.”  For whenever you eat this bread and drink this cup, you proclaim the Lord’s death until He comes.” (!st Corinthians 11:23-26)  This sacrament was to help believers center their lives on the One who had given His life for them.  The bread represented Christ’s broken body, offered as a sinless sacrifice.  The cup represented the shed blood that sealed a new covenant of grace through faith with each person who would trust in Jesus.  The cup also spoke of the second coming of Christ.  When He returned, believers would receive a new body and partake of the marriage supper of the Lamb in heaven with Christ.  (Revelation 19:7-9)

Paul encouraged each person to examine themselves before they partook of this precious meal.  They should each judge themselves and repent of any sins or division.  He even warned them that if they partook of the meal in an unworthy manner, the possibility of God’s judgment was there.  Some had even died from failure to partake in the right spirit.  (1st Corinthians 11:29-31)  God’s desire was for all to be blessed!  Take a minute to examine your heart today!  Repent of any known sin and honor Christ’s gift of grace!

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