The “Why and How” of Holy Communion

The “Why and How” of Holy Communion

Pastor Vincent - 6 February 2021

The "Why and How" of Holy Communion

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* Intense theological battles were fought in church history with regard to the Holy Communion.

* The church agree that what is of vital importance during the sacrament is “life and worship”.

* No end to differing viewpoints, but sacraments are to be observed by every believer.

 

<Acts 2:42,46-47>

42 They devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and to fellowship, to the breaking of bread and to prayer… 46 Every day they continued to meet together in the temple courts. They broke bread in their homes and ate together with glad and sincere hearts, 47 praising God and enjoying the favor of all the people. And the Lord added to their number daily those who were being saved.

 

Our Lord Jesus instituted the Holy Communion during the last supper.

* Bread and wine—representing the Lord’s body and blood.

* Establishing the New Covenant – The forgiveness of sin and restoration of relationship with God for all those who believe.

 

<1 Cor 11:27-34>

27 So then, whoever eats the bread or drinks the cup of the Lord in an unworthy manner will be guilty of sinning against the body and blood of the Lord. 28 Everyone ought to examine themselves before they eat of the bread and drink from the cup. 29 For those who eat and drink without discerning the body of Christ eat and drink judgment on themselves. 30 That is why many among you are weak and sick, and a number of you have fallen asleep. 31 But if we were more discerning with regard to ourselves, we would not come under such judgment. 32 Nevertheless, when we are judged in this way by the Lord, we are being disciplined so that we will not be finally condemned with the world.

33 So then, my brothers and sisters, when you gather to eat, you should all eat together. 34 Anyone who is hungry should eat something at home, so that when you meet together it may not result in judgment.

And when I come I will give further directions.

 

Background of how the Holy Communion evolved since the early church

* Daily Full meal ⟹ Ritualized and structured small meal by the 3rd century

* 1st and 2nd centuries – Christians usually gathered in individual homes for a full communal evening meal to commemorate the Lord’s Supper.

* Slowly transformed to a Greco-Roman banquets with some drinking too much wine, or by coming just to satisfy their hunger.

* Some became sick, some even pass on.

* The message that rings: The Holy Sacrament cannot be defiled.

 

<1 Cor 11:27-29>

27 So then, whoever eats the bread or drinks the cup of the Lord in an unworthy manner will be guilty of sinning against the body and blood of the Lord. 28 Everyone ought to examine themselves before they eat of the bread and drink from the cup. 29 For those who eat and drink without discerning the body of Christ eat and drink judgment on themselves.

 

How should we partake the Holy Communion?

* The need for self-examination.

* Self-examination not to exclude Christians from the sacraments, but to have them receive it with the right heart.

* Beware of willful sinning.

<Ps 66:18>: If I had cherished sin in my heart, the Lord would not have listened.

* Do not miss the opportunity of having a renewed and refreshing experience through Holy Communion.

 

“It is the law of friendship that friends should live together… Christ has not left us without his bodily presence in this pilgrimage of ours, but he joins us to himself in this sacrament in the reality of his body and blood”. ~ St. Thomas Aquinas

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Pastor Vincent Choo
choochisan@gmail.com

Vincent is the Senior Pastor of The Life Church and Missions (Singapore) and is an ardent missionary to the Chinese World. He currently lives in Singapore with his wife, Qiufen, and has three kids, Mary, David, and Caleb.

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