1 Corinthians 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?
The celebration of "Communion" instituted by the Lord Jesus Christ at his last supper with his disciples has always been regarded as an important part of the Christian church. It was practiced by the first century church and is a service in most Christian churches today. Jesus Christ presented it to his disciples as something to do "in remembrance of me." It was not instituted as a rite of passage into the church or as a celebration of the Passover. It was given as a way of remembering the accomplishments of the Lord Jesus Christ.
In "Communion" two distinct accomplishments are identified and remembered: The blood Jesus Christ shed for the remission and forgiveness of our sins and his body which was broken for our physical healing. While the "Passover meal" also contained the elements of the blood and the body of the lamb - and in fulfillment of the Old Testament law Jesus Christ was sacrificed as the last Passover Lamb, - the Lord's last supper was NOT the Passover meal and Communion is not a celebration of Passover.
To have remembrance of anyone or anything you must first have knowledge concerning that person or thing. We must know what Christ accomplished by the shedding of his blood (giving of his life) and by his physical suffering and his death before we can have remembrance of the results of his death.
The element of Blood
For the life of the flesh is in the blood: and I have given it to you upon the altar to make an atonement for your souls: for it is the blood that maketh an atonement for the soul.
The element of blood represents life or soul. The shedding of blood represents the giving of life to "make an atonement for your souls." When the Lord "passed over" the children of Israel and protected them when the first born of Egypt were slain it was because they sprinkled the blood of lambs on the lintel and side posts of their doors as God had directed them.
For I will pass through the land of Egypt this night, and will smite all the firstborn in the land of Egypt, both man and beast; and against all the gods of Egypt I will execute judgment: I am the Lord.
And the blood shall be to you for a token upon the houses where ye are: and when I see the blood, I will pass over you, and the plague shall not be upon you to destroy you, when I smite the land of Egypt.
The blood was a token. It was symbolic of the life of the lamb given to make atonement for the life of the person. When God "saw" the blood he passed over that house and protected the people in that house. In like manner, Jesus Christ gave his life as a substitute for our life. We are identified with Christ and he was our substitute. When God looks at us He sees Christ.
2 Corinthians 5:21
For he [God] hath made him [Jesus] to be sin [a sin offering] for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him.
Jesus Christ's blood
was shed - his soul life was given - for the remission and forgiveness
of our sins. We are made righteous - right before God - by the offering
of Jesus Christ's life.
At that last supper Jesus Christ asked his disciples to remember (whenever they drank wine) the blood he was going to shed for them.
And he took the cup, and gave thanks, and gave it to them, saying, Drink ye all of it;
For this is my blood of the new testament, which is shed for many for the remission of sins.
But I say unto you, I will not drink henceforth of this fruit of the vine, until that day when I drink it new with you in my Father's kingdom.
The term "shed blood" refers to the life of the flesh which is "in the blood" being given. Jesus Christ's blood was shed - his life was given - for the remission of our sins. God uses a metaphor in His Word when He says that the wine we drink "is the blood" of Christ. The wine does not literally turn into his blood as some have taught. Again, this service is a remembrance of Christ and what he accomplished in giving his life. It is not the physical blood shed but rather that Jesus' life was given that is important in his sacrifice for our sins.
The element of his broken body:
There are people who believe that it is God's Will for them to be sick or for them to suffer. Some believe that God makes them a better Christian by sending sickness and disease. These opinions are in opposition to God's Will as declared in His Word.
The second element of the memorial of Communion is the bread which represents Christ's body which was broken for our physical healing. To fully understand the physical wholeness made available in Christ let us start by taking a good look at God's Will regarding health.
And said, if thou wilt diligently hearken to the voice of the Lord thy God, and wilt do that which is right in his sight, and wilt give ear to his commandments, and keep all his statutes, I will put none of these diseases upon thee, which I have brought upon the Egyptians: for I am the Lord that healeth thee.
God does not change. God is THE LORD THAT HEALETH THEE. The name describes God. In the Old Testament health and wholeness were dependent upon listening to God and keeping ALL his commandments and statutes, and doing that which was right in His sight. Once again, Jesus Christ walked the walk for us and we are identified with his perfect walk. God looks at us and sees Christ. We receive physical, healing wholeness from the "Lord That Healeth Thee" because of the sacrifice of Jesus Christ.
Bless the Lord, O my soul, and forget not all his benefits:
Who forgiveth all thine iniquities; who healeth all thy diseases;
God forgives ALL our sins. God heals ALL our diseases. This is the nature of God and both areas are important parts of the accomplishments of Jesus Christ. His life blood for our sins and his body broken for our physical healing.
How God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Ghost and with power: who went about doing good, and healing all that were oppressed of the devil; for God was with him.
Jesus Christ always did God's Will and the Word of God says HEALING ALL. Physical healing is the Will of God.
And he that sent me is with me: The Father hath not left me alone; for I do always those things that please him.
If Jesus Christ ALWAYS did God's Will and Jesus Christ healed ALL then healing for all must be God's Will!!!
And his fame went throughout all Syria: and they brought unto him all sick people that were taken with divers [many] diseases and torments, and those which were possessed with devils, and those which were lunatick, and those that had the palsy; and he healed them.
ALL sick people - many diseases, mental problems, possessed, palsy - HE HEALED THEM ALL.
Matthew 8:16 . . . he cast out the spirits
with his word, and healed all
that were sick:
Matthew 9:35 . . . healing every sickness and every disease among the people.
Matthew 12:15 . . . great multitudes followed him, and he healed them all;
Isaiah had prophesied that when the Christ came he would bear our sins and sicknesses:
But he was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we are healed.
The Christ was to be wounded for our external sins. He was to be bruised for our internal sins. Our mental peace would be the result of his sacrifice and by his stripes we would be healed. Jesus was that promised Christ and the promised results are now ours to claim!
1 Peter 2:24
Who his own self bare our sins in his own body on the tree, that we, being dead to sins, should live unto righteousness: by whose stripes ye were healed.
For believers today the promise of Isaiah is a past tense reality! In Isaiah we ARE to be healed when the Christ comes. In Peter we WERE healed when he did come. The memorial of Communion is a remembrance of the accomplishments of Christ. He took the physical sickness and disease upon him and his body was broken for our healing. This is what we remember as we eat the Communion bread.
The believers in Corinth were gathering together and eating and drinking without reflection upon the accomplishments of Christ. Especially, they were not recognizing that his body was broken for their healing.
1 Corinthians 11:29b - 30
. . . not discerning the Lord's body.
For this cause many are weak and sickly among you, and many sleep.
Communion is effective when each believer is mindful of Christ and recognizes both his blood shed for sins and his body broken for healing. The Corinthian believers were weak, sickly, and many died because they did not discern the Lord's body in the remembrance of Communion. We have healing in Christ just as we have remission of sins.
1 Corinthians 11:23-25
For I have received of the Lord that which also I delivered unto you, That the Lord Jesus the same night in which he was betrayed took bread:
And when he had given thanks , he brake it, and said, Take, eat: this is my body, which is broken for you: this do in remembrance of me.
After the same manner also he took the cup when he had supped, saying, This cup is the new testament in my blood: this do ye, as oft as ye drink it, in remembrance of me.
© Copyright April 2000 Michael Cortright