At RE.THINK Church, we start with the Bible in order to determine what is true, right and accurate. If the Bible isn’t clear about a topic, we’ll see what church leaders throughout history have said. We move to logic and then our own personal experiences from there in order to determine what is true, right and accurate. With that in mind, we acknowledge there are several faith traditions that have different opinions about what communion is and what it isn’t. The Bible is our foundation for understanding this sacred meal. We want to be clear and help people understand communion.
We must acknowledge that Jesus was a Jewish man who practiced Judaism. One of the central events and practices of Judaism is Passover. This reminds the Jewish people that God freed them from slavery in Egypt (Exodus 1-13). Jesus gathered with his apostles in an upper room in Jerusalem to celebrate Passover. The Passover Meal included a plate called a Seder plate that held very symbolic objects and meaning. The meal also involved 4 cups of wine each having their own symbolic meaning. For a more in depth explanation of the Seder Plate click here.
During a Passover celebration with his apostles Jesus issued in a new meal with a new meaning and a new purpose. See Matthew 26: 26-30, Mark 14, Luke 22 and John 13. Jesus’ sacrifice to pay for humanity’s sin was just around corner. During this familiar meal, Jesus spoke to his apostles. He took the bread and blessed it and broke it while saying “This is my body which is given for you”. He also took a cup of wine and said “This is my blood which is poured out as an offering for the forgiveness of sins”.
Jesus gave his followers instructions during this meal, First Jesus said, “Do this and when you do this, remember me and what I’m about to do”. Second, Jesus gave a new command, “Love one another”.
As one can imagine, this meal became a tradition whenever the people of the church gathered. In some places, it became an issue. So, leaders in the church’s early days had to give instructions and reminders. The church in Corinth was one that had some issues. Their leader, Paul, wrote a letter to them to further the instructions and bring clarity. We encourage you to read 1 Corinthians 11 on your own some time soon.
We want to point out one of the instructions Paul wrote about to the church in Corinth. Paul gives some of these instructions in I Corinthians 11:27-32. The instructions may seem a bit harsh, but they were meant to bring reverence back to the meal. Literally, people were getting drunk off of the communion wine. They were also just going through the motions when it came to communion. Paul’s instructions help us to evaluate ourselves and make sure that we are not just going through the motions or abusing the meal’s intention.
What is communion?
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RE.THINK Church values being a church that is casual. Casual Church goes far beyond the way we dress, it's more about we expect people to take this journey at their own pace. We are here to journey with everyone. So we've created a blog so people can check us out before they show up for a service.