Cross Word: Proclaim (1 Corthinthians 11:17-34)
Topic: Sermons Passage: 1 Corinthians 11:17–11:34
Well, if you’ve gotten one message from 1st Corinthians so far, it hopefully has something to do with the danger of idolatry. And this week will be interesting because we’ll be going through a passage you’re well familiar with — 1 Corinthians 11:17-34 — which we read on a monthly basis, since it’s about the Lord’s Supper. So … what does the Lord’s Supper have to do with the danger of idolatry? Nothing. And Everything. The Lord’s Supper is obviously not about idolatry, rather it’s being presented as the antidote to idolatry. More specifically, since the idolatry of the Corinthians has manifested itself in such things as hurtful divisions and painful disunity, sexual immorality, the meaning of marriage, gender roles and gender identity, gross idolatry, people demanding their rights at the expense of others, the all too common failure to serve and encourage one another, confusing worship, and serious doubts about the faith. This small church was not only struggling with harassment from outside, but was fairly dysfunctional on the inside.
And so Paul has been teaching the Corinthians (and us) about the effects of idolatry and how it can bring us great harm, lead us into compromising the faith, and damage our relationships with others. However, now, at the end of chapter 11, he reminds both them and us that there’s only one place that they can deal with all of these issues at the same time. And that’s by coming in faith and repentance to the Table of the Lord. The Communion Service, commonly known as The Lord’s Supper, is the place where God not only nourishes us and presents His forgiveness of us, but also serves to remind us of our union with Christ and our unity with each other.
We easily forget that this is a corporate meal, and what we do as individuals effects who we are as a church, so we respond to the gospel in faith together, we repent together, and we eat together. There are several visible elements to The Lord’s Supper, which are not private, but publicly seen, and publicly received, in order to remind us that we’re all in this together. And so this Sunday, we’re going to look at the great value of The Lord’s Supper, why it’s so important that we participate in as adults, use it as a teaching time for our children, and then we’ll celebrate it together. For there is much for us to celebrate. You don’t want to miss this one! See you there, Dr. Dave