Disclaimer: About This Blog

THIS BLOG IS: my personal journey of how I am rethinking some of my spiritual beliefs.
THIS BLOG IS NOT: intended to point fingers at people who I think are wrong.
I do not believe the final judgement will be based on how many correct answers we get on a theology exam. I believe many people throughout history have had genuine relationships with our Lord and Saviour Jesus, despite holding questionable beliefs and practices. I make no claim to having it all figured out or being your judge. If we end up disagreeing over these topics I pray we can find a way to demonstrate grace.

Saturday, July 7, 2012

Lords Supper Thoughts

I want to put together some thoughts about the protestant tradition referred to as communion or Lord's supper.

What do we mean by communion?

The word communion comes from Latin communio, which mean mutual participation, or common. The corresponding term in Greek is κοινωνία, which is often translated as "fellowship".

I'm all for mutual participation when believers gather, and sharing things in common.   However I'm not sure quitely sitting in rows and passing plates with little cups and little crackers is the best fit for mutual participation or sharing much in common.  I believe real fellowship includes deeper interaction and sharing of ones lives with each other.

What do we mean my Lords Supper?

Similar concern here.  In Scripture we see the Lords supper was a full meal. It wasn't a quiet time with people sitting in rows passing the 'elements' as is the tradition today.

Why Bread?

Bread was the staple food for that culture. Jesus claimed to be the bread of life. He is what sustains and gives life to His followers.  But what if Jesus had come to an Asian culture? Would he have shared rice with his followers instead?  What about potatoes or tortillas for other cultures?  I think the symbolism with bread is great, I just want to push a little here to consider the heart of the matter.

Grape Juice or Wine?

Many have no issue substituting grape juice for the wine.  Why not substitute the bread with pizza?  :) We drink the wine (or red liquid) to remember the blood covenant Jesus makes with us for forgiveness of sin.  I suspect God is OK with juice as long as we understanding the meaning of it all.

Love Feast

It seems clear that the early church met regularly to celebrate something they called a love feast or agape feast. It seems it was a full meal held on a regular basis. Those who had food would bring it, and everybody would eat. It seems the meal included breaking of bread as part of their celebration. 

Administered by whom?

There is no New Testament evidence that would suggest only ordained clergy can serve the bread and wine/juice. 

Have I missed anything?  Do we think the communion or Lord's Supper traditions we have are better or more meaningful than those of the early church?  Is there more room for reform?

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3 comments:

Frank Prescott said...

I have often wanted to see a real supper where people are interacting and celebrating. What we see now is more of a Holy Spirit hors d'oeuvre. Breaking bread and drinking wine/juice would be integrated into the meal as the remembrance. The local church we were attending served communion weekly and I would not participate in it very often because of, what I consider, the unbiblical nature of how it is performed.

Jonathan said...

Frank,
I'm glad to hear I am not alone. I still sit through the traditional ceremony, but I definitely struggle with it. I pray I can maintain unity despite the differences I have with my brothers and sisters. Thanks for sharing.

homwardbound said...

Maybe consider this when this last supper took place it was actually the pass over, that was celebrated and ironically it is about the blood, for it was the blood in egypt that saved those that had it on their door posts. See the alegory, to Jesus the blood and the bread, bread being his Body blood being your redemption smothered and covered, and yes it was a full intimate meal, as well as Jesus filling the law completely bringing in a new law hwere God has chose to remember none or our sins any more Hebrews 10:17