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How can we come to the Lord’s supper with honesty about our sins and failures but discernment that the Lord’s body and blood offer us forgiveness and mercy and life?
I Cor. 10:16-17 Christ was available to the children of Israel. He was near them, sustaining them but none of that impacted their souls. They were not in fellowship with him. By partaking of the Lord’s supper we are participating with Christ and having fellowship with him. Fellowship with Christ unites all of us into one body. We are one by partaking of the one Christ and we partake of one loaf.
John 6:22-40 When Jesus talks about eating his flesh and drinking his blood, he is talking about us entering fully into his death and resurrection, about us dying and rising with Him at conversion and daily in our lives (Rom. 6:1-6). He is talking about us feasting on His life and resources as we fellowship with Him.
John 15: Life and fruit is the result of being attached to and abiding in Christ. We are pruned so we can bear more fruit. Do we know when we are being pruned?
I Cor. 11:27-29 How does a person examine himself? What are we examining? We are evaluating whether we have a love relationship with Jesus, whether we are living selfishly or unselfishly. Jesus wholeheartedly embraced the will of the Father. Are we depending on the death and resurrection of Jesus to qualify us to participate in Communion? There is forgiveness for sin. No one gets everything right all of the time.
How do we eat unworthily? We eat unworthily when we focus on the ritual and ceremony to save us. We eat unworthily when we refuse to confess known sin or when we try to be worthy by human perfection. We eat unworthily when we treat his death as common and not important.
Summary: We partake of communion worthily when we understand that salvation comes to us through the Lord’s broken body and shed blood. We confess that we are poor and needy and we abandon ourselves completely to Christ. We say “I believe, help thou my unbelief.” We partake worthily when we repent of known sin, ask for forgiveness, and depend on Christ to deliver us. We realize that the bread and cup is a gift to us, not something we earn through human effort or perfection. We partake worthily when we have a long view of the redeeming work of Christ in us. This is a lifelong process that the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit are fully committed to.