The Lord's Supper
If you are new with us today, we will be celebrating a sacrament we call, “The Lord’s Supper” or Communion. You may be wondering, “What is this and can I participate?” We have provided this information to briefly answer those questions, and to help you better understand its significance.
The Lord’s Supper is eating and drinking bread and juice in remembrance of Christ. He commanded us to do this at His last supper the night before He was crucified (Matthew 26:26-28). The bread is symbolic of Christ’s body crucified on the cross for us. The juice is symbolic of His blood being shed for our sins (John 6:51-63).
As we participate in the Lord’s Supper we are reminded of three things:
1. Christ Forgives Us. “He took a cup of wine and gave thanks for it…for this is my blood, sealing the New Covenant. It is poured out to forgive the sins of the multitudes.” Matthew 26:27-28 (LB)
2. Christ Unifies Us. “No matter how many of us there are, we all eat from the same loaf, showing that we are all part of one body of Christ.” 1 Corinthians 10:17 (LB)
3. Christ Gives Life To Us. “This is my body” 1 Corinthians 11:24, “I am the true bread from Heaven; and anyone who eats this bread shall live forever.” John 6:58 (LB)
Some guidelines to follow:
1. We encourage only those who have made a clear confession of faith in Christ to take communion. 1
2. A child may participate with a parent if the parent has faithfully instructed the child in the particulars of this sacrament, and the child has credibly expressed his or her own faith in Christ.
3. Trays of juice and bread will be made available during the worship time, and a time of prayer and reflection will be led. You may serve yourself, and if you would like, you may serve your spouse, or others who may need assistance.
4. Before you take communion, take time for personal reflection, focusing on the grace of the cross and thanking God for his unconditional love towards you.
We believe this sacrament is a means of grace; through it, the benefits of the cross are applied to believers by faith in Christ – not because of anything inherent in the bread and juice, but because they are signs and seals of what Christ has already done. We also believe the Lord’s spiritual presence is among us at the Communion. Therefore we encourage you to treat this moment with deep sincerity and reverence. 2
1 That is, you have publicly confessed you are a sinner in need of God’s forgiveness; you have turned from your sins and have turned to God to be saved (Ac 2:37-38; 26:20; Lk 3:3; 9:26); you believe that you are eternally saved by God’s grace alone, through faith alone, in Jesus Christ alone, and not because of anything you have done to merit God’s favor, but only because of what Jesus Christ has done on your behalf (Eph 2:8,9; 2Co 5:21).
2 You should confess your sins and receive God’s forgiveness by faith in the blood of Christ before partaking. If any believers have something against you, first be reconciled to them; then take communion (Mt 5:23-24). Why? Because anyone who eats the bread or drinks the cup in an unworthy manner heaps judgment on himself (1Co 11:27-29).