As Holy Week and Passover begin we are all familiar with the major points of history. We celebrated the triumphal entry last Sunday. We will commemorate the crucifixion of the Lord Jesus Christ on Good Friday and we will celebrate His resurrection on Easter. These are the events that made everything we have today as Christians possible. Jesus Christ became our sacrifice, paying the price for our sin and redeeming us all.
But God showed his great love for us by sending Christ to die for us while we were still sinners. (Romans 5:8)
What had been impossible became possible through the cross. We moved from the age of the law into the age of grace. God entered into a New Covenant with humanity and this covenant was established and ratified by the Lord Jesus Christ through His sacrificial death on the cross.
The disciples were astounded. “Then who in the world can be saved?” they asked. Jesus looked at them intently and said, “Humanly speaking, it is impossible. But with God everything is possible.” (Matthew 19:25-26)
This is the season of the year where our redemption is in full focus. It is at Passover and Easter that we are reminded what was given so that all may receive the gift of salvation.
On the night that Jesus was betrayed He instituted the sacrament that we now refer to as communion.
He took some bread and gave thanks to God for it. Then he broke it in pieces and gave it to the disciples, saying, “This is my body, which is given for you. Do this to remember me.” After supper he took another cup of wine and said, “This cup is the new covenant between God and his people—an agreement confirmed with my blood, which is poured out as a sacrifice for you.” (Luke 22:19-20)
The Apostle Paul further elaborates on this sacrament:
For I pass on to you what I received from the Lord himself. On the night when he was betrayed, the Lord Jesus took some bread and gave thanks to God for it. Then he broke it in pieces and said, “This is my body, which is given for you. Do this to remember me.” In the same way, he took the cup of wine after supper, saying, “This cup is the new covenant between God and his people—an agreement confirmed with my blood. Do this to remember me as often as you drink it.” For every time you eat this bread and drink this cup, you are announcing the Lord’s death until he comes again.
So anyone who eats this bread or drinks this cup of the Lord unworthily is guilty of sinning against the body and blood of the Lord. That is why you should examine yourself before eating the bread and drinking the cup. For if you eat the bread or drink the cup without honoring the body of Christ, you are eating and drinking God’s judgment upon yourself. That is why many of you are weak and sick and some have even died.
But if we would examine ourselves, we would not be judged by God in this way. Yet when we are judged by the Lord, we are being disciplined so that we will not be condemned along with the world. (1 Corinthians 11:23-32)
I just want to make a few points on this subject:
- Our life was redeemed from the curse of sin and the price that God paid to do so was the blood of His Son, the Lord Jesus Christ.
- There is no power in bread and wine, but there is great power in the recognition, remembrance and realization of the victory that was won by Jesus sacrificing Himself.
- No matter what we face in this life we have already overcome the world because we believe in the Lord Jesus Christ. Our faith in Him is our victory. His death and resurrection destroyed the power of sin, Satan and even death.
It is easy to become religious and focus on doctrine, dogma and practice. Christ commands us to remember Him and what He went through to provide the New Covenant that we walk in today. He asked us to remember as often as we eat and drink. Paul said when we remember Him in this manner we are announcing the Lord’s death.
He is the New Covenant. Let us remember that the price of our freedom was His blood and that we have been granted grace and mercy. He is our righteousness and He has risen from the dead.
May the power of the risen Christ fill your heart and life as you remember Him and give Him praise this Easter season.