2 April 2017

The Ordinance of Holy Communion

Ask: Why do we celebrate communion? Is it just to remember the Lord? Does this ancient tradition have any real significance in today’s church?

First shadow of communion: Gen. 14:18, **And Melchizedek king of Salem brought forth bread and wine: and he was the priest of the most high God.**

Jesus’ heart toward the communion celebration: Luke 22:15, **And he said to them, “I have eagerly desired to eat this Passover with you before I suffer.**

NOTE: Jesus eagerly desired to celebrate this Passover with His disciples because He knew this was a gift that He was giving to His church

#What are the implications of communion to us today?

##Communion = Koinonia (Christian fellowship) lit. social intercourse

I Cor. 10:16, **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?**

I Cor. 1:9, **God is faithful, through whom you were called into fellowship with His Son, Jesus Christ our Lord.**

##We are reminded of Jesus’ sacrifice and much more…

Exodus 25:30, **Put the bread of Presence on this table to be before me at all times**

##In communion, we can step into that place of intimacy with the Lord

READ: Matthew 7:21-22 and Matthew 25:11

Jesus is saying here, that He was never given the opportunity to experience spiritual intimacy with these people

NOTE: Many believers and many churches are dead today because they choose not to enter into the true depth of intimacy (koinonia, communion) that God intends for them to experience.

Unless we enter into this place of intimacy with Jesus, we have no life (zoe).

We must enter into an intimate relationship with Jesus and receive Him as the Bread of Life. John 6:35, **“Jesus said to them, “I am the bread of life; he who comes to Me will not hunger, and he who believes in Me will never thirst”**

READ: John 6:48-58.

#What are the requirements to participate in communion?

Exodus 12:43-45, **“And the LORD said unto Moses and Aaron, This is the ordinance of the passover: There shall no stranger eat thereof: But every man’s servant that is bought for money, when thou hast circumcised him, then shall he eat thereof. A foreigner and an hired servant shall not eat thereof.”**

###No stranger of foreigner may take communion
###No one who is a stranger or foreigner to God
###No one who is uncircumcised may take communion
###Not circumcision of the flesh but those who are uncircumcised in heart
###The table of the Lord is for the believer

#What if there is sin in your life?

I Cor. 11:27, **“Wherefore whosoever shall eat this bread, and drink this cup of the Lord, unworthily, shall be guilty of the body and blood of the Lord”**

##Unworthily = irreverently

###This really has little to do with your spiritual state

###It has to do with your attitude toward the communion event

###The table of the Lord is a place of purging – I Cor. 5:7
####This is a good thing, we can come dirty and leave cleansed


Psalm 105:37, **“Then He brought them out with silver and gold, and among His tribes there was not one who stumbled”**

##Every Israelite came out of Egypt whole

NOTE: Where had they been just hours before? At the Passover (communion) table. They gathered strength and health from the Lord’s table.

###They had been in slavery for 430 years.
###There were many who were up in years.

But there were none who were sick, feeble or weak among them. In fact, they seemed to have a little extra strength because they carried silver and gold from the land of Egypt. When we truly understand and receive the revelation of the Lord’s table, we’re going to also understand what health is.

##God’s promise to Israel and now to believers from Psalm 91:10
###No disease of Egypt will come near to you
###No plague will come near your dwelling place

NOTE: Sickness is not from God, it is from the devil. So, another benefit of the revelation of the table of the Lord is healing for our bodies

###Concl.: In Judaism this practice is celebrated each “ara Shabat” The evening of…” The woman lights the candles, “waves” toward her three times and prays

Why is this the woman’s responsibility?

####The woman extinguished the light in the garden

####The woman brought the Light into the world in Bethle’chem (house of bread). Jesus, the “Bread of Life”

The Shabat bread is woven from 5 strands of dough – God’s grace

Two loaves are on the table – the double portion of manna for the Sabbath

Poppy seeds are on the bread – to remind them of the sand of the desert

The Passover bread is matzo

###Matzo bread has no leaven
###Matzo bread is striped
###Matzo bread is pierced

Does this remind you of anyone?

For Passover, three pieces of Matzo are used (Father, Son & Holy Spirit)

The centre piece (the Son) is removed.
This centre piece is called the “afikommen” which means “I came”
The afikommen is broken, wrapped in a linen cloth and hidden away

Jesus’ life was broken, he was wrapped in a linen cloth and He was hidden away in a tomb.

Communion is more than a religious tradition. It is a gateway into the presence of God. It holds the promise of cleansing, healing, intimacy and fellowship.