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Christmas Communion The Message and the Meaning I Cor. 11:26 – “For as often as ye eat this bread, and drink this cup, ye do shew the Lord’s death till He come.” 1. The first Sunday of our Christmas Communion we talked about the bread and the wine. No leaven in the bread, no fermentation in the fruit of the vine, or wine. 2. Today, we talk about the Message and the Meaning. a. What we are saying and b. Why we are sharing. The Message and the Meaning of Communion is: I. Continuation – “…as often as…” answers the question “what would it take to make us grow? What would it take to develop our discipleship? a. Communion assumes a i. Power to start, to begin, to change. 1. I. Cor. 1:18 – “For the preaching of the cross is to them that perish foolishness, but unto us which are saved, it is the power of God.” 2. I. Cor. 1:23, 24 – “But we preach Christ crucified…the power and the wisdom of God.” 3. Romans 1:16 – “For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ; for it is the power of God unto salvation to everyone that believeth. ii. Presences to stay, build, continue. 1. II Peter 1:16 (Montgomery) – “We were not following cunningly devised fables when we told you of the power and the presence of our Lord Jesus Christ.” 2. Matt. 28:20 – “…and, lo (surely), I am with you always, even unto the end of the world (age). 3. Heb. 13:5 – “…for He hath said, I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee…” “…as often as…” continuing – He renews the power and the presence. II. Cooperation – “as ye…” – togetherness is the key i. I Cor. 11:17 – “…that ye come together.” Verse 18 – “when ye come together…” Verse 20 – “when ye come together.” ii. Answers the questions “What would it take to make us connect? Fellowship? Come together closer? iii. I Cor. 10:17 (NIV) – “Because there is one loaf, we, who are many, are one body, for we all partake of the one loaf.” III. Celebration – “As ye eat…and drink…” a. Answers the question “What would it take to make us rejoice? i. I Cor. 10:16 – “The cup of blessing…is it not the communion of the blood of Christ…?” ii. Blessing: To “praise”, “speak well of”, “invoke prosperity on”, iii. Not a fast – a feast. A time to rejoice! b. Joy is an inside job. i. Not a result of outer situation – but an inner salvation ii. Not response to external stimuli, but an inner source. John 15:11 – “These things have I spoken unto you, and that your joy might be full.” iii. It is why the world can’t press us into its mold. iv. No need to conform or collapse – “Greater is He that is in you”. c. To rejoice is a choice! Paul seemed to think that we could “rejoice on command/demand” i. Phil 4:4 – “Rejoice in the Lord always; and again, I say, rejoice.” ii. I Thess. 5:16 – “Rejoice evermore.” iii. I Peter 1:8 (NIV) – “Though you have not seem Him, you love Him, and even though you do not see Him now, you believe in Him and are filled with an “inexpressible and glorious joy.” iv. Communion is a time to eat, drink, enjoy, and rejoice. The joy of the Lord is your strength. v. The Bible compares we Christians to 1. A brick in a building, carefully joined together, and fairly useless alone. It is very valuable when correctly connected. 2. A part of a body a. each with their unique structure and function b. Each necessary for the body to be complete and healthy. 3. Sheep in a flock. Everyone needs to be cared for at some point. 4. Members in a family. At communion we should a. take off our masks b. Tear down our pretenses and images and become one in Spirit. c. Be true – the pyramid – draw close to God. Then we will draw closer to each other. IV. Communication - “…ye do show…” a. Answers the question “What would it take to get us to witness?” b. A true, audio-visual testimony, public participation in communion c. II Cor. 3:2, 3 – “…ye are manifestly declared to be the epistle of Christ…written…with the Spirit of the living God…known and read of all men…” d. Not everyone feels free to speak up front in public. This is a unique way for everyone to witness. e. Col. 2:13-15 – “And you hath He (Jesus) quickened (made alive)…having forgiven you all your sin, canceling, blotting all of everything out that stood against you... “He took it out of the way…nailed it to His cross. “…and having spoiled principalities and powers, He made a show of them openly, triumphing over them in it.” Winners make great witnesses! V. Commemoration - “…shew His death…” a. Answers the question “What would it take to get us to trust His love?” b. I Cor. 11:24 – “…this do in remembrance…” How do you want us to remember you, Jesus? i. Helpless baby, poor family, small nation of slaves ii. He lived a sinless life – extraordinary example iii. Tough truths, the parable and power, the messages and miracles. iv. Laid down my life for you, and by doing so won back everything Adam lost. v. Conquered every conqueror. vi. Got and gave gifts to you. vii. Now praying for you and through the Holy Spirit will meet with you at this memorial. “Just what would it take to get you to believe that I really love you?” VI. Contemplation – “…to expect…” “…till He comes…” a. Answers the question “What would it take to get us to hope? b. Titus 2:13 – “…looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Savior Jesus Christ.” c. The source of Hope? The Word of God! d. Romans 15:4 – “…what soever things…written aforetime, were written…that we…through the encouragement of the Scriptures, might have hope!” e. The supply of Hope? – Romans 15:13 – “Now the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing that ye may about in hope, through the power of the Holy Ghost!” f. The survival of Hope? i. Communion is connecting with the source and supply! VII. Consecration – “to devote entirely” “…the Lord’s…” a. Answers the question, “What would it take to make us serve? b. I Cor. 11:23 – “For I have received of the Lord that which also I delivered unto you, that the Lord Jesus the same night in which He was betrayed, took bread…” c. Consecration means to submit, surrender, separate unto and serve His majesty. d. Young seeker came to pastor asking questions. Pastor handed him a piece of paper with just tow words written on it and said, “you must mark out one of these words: NO LORD i. To mark out LORD says NO ii. To mark out NO says LORD The Choice Is Yours!
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