Two thousand years ago, before the crucifixion, the broke bread and drank the cup with His disciples. Since then, believers have been keeping doing so to remember the Lord. Two thousand years have passed. Through receiving a revelation from the Lord, I gain a little more understanding of the significance of His Supper.
by Yinzi, Japan
Before being crucified, the Lord Jesus established His Supper. The Lord used the bread and the cup as the symbols of His own body and blood, and asked His disciples to eat and drink them. So what was the Lord Jesus’ will of doing this? What was the particular significance in this?
It is recorded in , “And as they did eat, Jesus took bread, and blessed, and broke it, and gave to them, and said, Take, eat: this is my body. And he took the cup, and when he had given thanks, he gave it to them: and they all drank of it. And he said to them, This is my blood of the new testament, which is shed for many. Truly I say to you, I will drink no more of the fruit of the vine, until that day that I drink it new in the kingdom of God” (Mark 14: 22–25). From then on, observing Maundy Thursday by taking holy meals and breaking bread has consequently been one of the important rituals of Christianity. Christians call this day the Lord’s Day, a day for them to remember the Lord. Or they call it Sunday worship, a day for them to worship the Lord.
In the early 1980s, I was a kid and often attended services with my mother. At usual prayer meetings and Bible-reading meetings, I couldn’t understand the sermons or the Bible. So I just liked to go to Holy Communion on every Sunday. But I could not take the holy meals, eat the bread or drink the cup, because I wasn’t baptized. Every time when everyone sang the hymn “This night that Jesus was betrayed”, I would cry together with them. The Bible records, “That the Lord Jesus the same night in which he was betrayed took bread: And when he had given thanks, he broke 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 you, as oft as you drink it, in remembrance of me” (Corinthians 11:23-25). Meanwhile, the scenes of the Lord Jesus’ crucifixion would replay in my mind like a movie, which was told to me by my mother often. I knew that it was the Lord Jesus who redeemed all mankind and His precious blood became mankind’s sin offering. Thus, we mankind were forgiven of sins and weren’t executed by the law. And if we commit sins, as long as we pray, confess and repent to the Lord we will be forgiven.
My mother frequently said to me, “As a Christian, we must observe the breaking of bread and the drinking of the cup each week. It is not only for remembering the Lord, but more importantly, if we don’t break bread or drink wine, we will have no share in the Lord. Additionally, those who commit sins but do not repent within one week are unclean and cannot break bread or drink the cup. Otherwise, they will defile the body of the Lord and offend God.” I once heard my mother say, “On one occasion, a brother stepped up to take the holy meals. However, he had only just stretched his hand into the dish when he fainted on the floor and foamed at the mouth. We all fell into panic and then knelt down together to pray and confess to the Lord. After that, the brother came round and confessed his sins before the Lord. Then we knew that within that week he not only stole crops from and quarreled with an unbeliever, but he even hated and cursed the unbeliever in his heart. We also understood that the Holy Spirit was safeguarding the sanctification of the Lord’s Day. This incident made us have some fear of God. Afterward, on every Lord’s Day, whoever sinned within a week would voluntarily confess and not take bread or drink the cup. They could only stand aside and repent to the Lord in tears.”
Before I knew it, the year of 1992 came. After I left school, I worked in the city. One time it happened that on a Lord’s Day I came home and saw my mother was slow in going attend the meeting. I asked what the matter was, and she explained, “The church has been divided into two factions, and various sins are committed every day. Pastors and elders take turns to safeguard the church offerings and the account book. But no matter who safeguards them, the account book will get lost in a few months. So there must be uproar immediately after the Holy Communion. I’m just wondering: Anybody can tell that it is the pastors and elders who have stolen the church money, but why does the Holy Spirit not discipline them? They still lead the Holy Communion, break bread and drink the cup. Pastors and elders are all like this, not to mention brothers and sisters. They are still more dissolute. Some do business, some form cliques, and some even judge and slander others. Every time if I attend the meeting, seeing these things, I’ll feel sad in my heart. But if not, I’ll feel guilty. The Bible says, ‘Why whoever shall eat this bread, and drink this cup of the Lord, unworthily, shall be guilty of the body and blood of the Lord’ (1 Corinthians 11:27). Well, this is a great sin!”
My mother said with a sigh. Hearing this, my former sacred and pious feeling toward the Lord’s Day suddenly disappeared from my heart. At that time, I thought of the scenes of the Lord Jesus entering the temple, which is recorded in the Bible, “And the Jews’ passover was at hand, and Jesus went up to Jerusalem. And found in the temple those that sold oxen and sheep and doves, and the changers of money sitting: And when he had made a whip of small cords, he drove them all out of the temple, and the sheep, and the oxen; and poured out the changers’ money, and overthrew the tables; And said to them that sold doves, Take these things hence; make not my Father’s house an house of merchandise” (John 2: 13-16). The Lord Jesus also said, “Destroy this temple, and in three days I will raise it up” (John 2:19). Why did the Lord Jesus say that they destroyed the temple? The reason is this: Originally, the Spirit of the Lord God looked upon the temple, and any ungodly deeds in it would be punished by the law, let alone the deeds of selling oxen, sheep and doves; however, afterward it got to the point where such deeds like selling oxen, sheep and doves and exchanging money weren’t punished by the law. Then what was this situation? Why did Jehovah God not discipline them? Why did He not use the law to punish them? Similarly, the church of today is the body of the Lord. Yet, those who have sinned but not confessed still break bread and drink the cup. Why doesn’t the Lord do something about them? I felt very perplexed.
From then on, I often prayed before the Lord with this question. Once, when practicing spiritual devotion, I contemplated this matter again: Now is already the last days and iniquities are multiplied in the church. No one can hold on to the Lord’s way. All of us break bread and drink the cup with sins, which defiles the holiness of the Lord. Furthermore, pastors and elders have no message to preach, and many believers are cold in their faith and love. The Lord very carefully observes all the conditions. How could He not do something about it? Unless He has special arrangements. Maybe He already made His will clear at His Supper. So I opened the Bible and read the Lord’s words again, “Truly I say to you, I will drink no more of the fruit of the vine, until that day that I drink it new in the kingdom of God” (Mark 14:25). Pondering the prophecy of the Lord Jesus, I seemed to understand His will. The Lord Jesus said at His Supper, “until that day that I drink it new in the kingdom of God.” These words have two levels of meaning at least. First, the Lord Jesus made a covenant with us. That is, there is a limit to how long we should observe Holy Communion. When God’s kingdom appears, we needn’t take bread and drink wine that represent the Lord’s body and blood. So what does “the kingdom of God” refer to? It’s easy to find the answer in the Bible. The Lord Jesus said, “Our Father which are in heaven, Hallowed be your name. Your kingdom come, Your will be done in earth, as it is in heaven” (Matthew 6: 9-10). “The kingdoms of this world are become the kingdoms of our Lord, and of his Christ; and he shall reign for ever and ever” (Revelation 11:15) The Lord Jesus has left us for two thousand years. If He had not established Holy Communion, we would probably have departed from Him. It was because of our observing the Holy Communion to remember the Lord that we hadn’t left Him, and got to draw near to the Lord and that could have the chance to behold His return. Second, at the Lord’s return, we will be led into the kingdom of Christ by Him. When the time comes, there will be no need to take bread and the wine, nor to observe the Holy Communion. Just like when the Lord Jesus came to work on earth at that time, people could obtain His grace as long as they followed the Lord after listening to His personal words. And when they committed sins, so long as they prayed, confessed and repented to the Lord they would be forgiven. While those who did not follow the Lord Jesus were rejected by Him. They committed sins without any sense of remorse within or any discipline. Even if they offered sacrifices, it didn’t work on them at all. Instead, they sinned and resisted God more fiercely.
In the end of the last days, if we want to welcome the second coming of the Lord, we should pay attention to searching for the footprints of God instead of continuing to observe the Holy Communion. Only in this way can we receive the supply of life. Otherwise, we can only continue to live in sin. In this, have you realized the particular significance of the Lord establishing His Supper?