Earlier (Sunday, July 28, at 5:15 p.m.), Dave had explained that for the first time the believers he gathers with shared a single loaf of bread and a single cup as the Lord’s Supper. I love the fact that Dave celebrates the small steps that a group is willing to take. As we read his further thoughts, it’s easy to see that he would love to change the “Supper” among that church even more. Well, he doesn’t want to change it… he wants to see God change it.
Here are some of the observations that Dave makes concerning the “Lord’s Supper” (from 1 Cor 11 primarily, but also from 1 Cor 10 and Acts 20):
1) The Lord’s Supper is the centerpiece of the Christian assembly.
2) The supper is superbly Christ-centered (“Do this in MY remembrance”).
3) No believer is “invited” to partake of the supper; we eat and drink in obedience to Christ’s command (“Do this” is in the imperative mood).
4) The supper is a genuine meal, not a ritual to be “administered.”
5) The emphasis is both on remembering and anticipating.
6) It is a joyous celebration and not a sorrowful funeral.
7) The meal symbolizes the unity of the Body of Christ.
8) ALL are to partake, and ALL are to partake together.
9) The “unworthy manner” to which Paul refers has nothing to do with one’s spiritual status at the time of eating. It refers to eating and drinking in a divided manner.
10) Self-examination is a necessary part of the Christian life, but in 1 Cor. 11 it is not a reference to the preparedness on the part of the believer. It is a call to observe the social nature of the meal in which distinctions based on partiality of any kind are forbidden.
11) The one loaf of bread not only symbolizes this unity but in some sense creates it.
12) Because there is only one loaf of bread, we are one body no matter how many we are or how diverse we may be. “Many yet one.”
Can you imagine gathering with your brothers and sisters in Christ around a table of food? Can you imagine eating and talking together knowing that Jesus is present (because he is and because it’s his meal)? Can you imagine how much different the teaching, encouraging, serving, and fellowship would be?
So, what would be the benefits of gathering in the way that Dave describes above? Would there be any disadvantages?