This table is one of the most significant ways God is knitting us together. It really is God’s work and not some kind of lever that we can pull, but we can come together here more or less ready for God to do this work. Remember, when the Corinthians came together, there were divisions among them – I am of Paul, I am of Apollos, I’m not with those guys. And this translated into real mayhem at the Table, with some folks eating and others being left out, and some drinking so much they were drunk. And Paul says that whatever they were doing, it was not the Lord’s Supper.
So look around you. Look down your aisle, look across the aisle, look behind you, look in front of you. What do you see? Who do you see? Christ says that you must see Him. But you might be tempted to say, but Jesus is perfect. He doesn’t snap and lose his temper. He doesn’t forget His promises. He doesn’t have kids that get into tangles with my kids. But You need to try again. Who are these people? They are the people Christ died for. They are His sheep. They are His treasure.
Do you have a grievance with anyone in this room, anyone in another service, any other saint at all? Lay it down. Has anyone snubbed you, misunderstood you, forgotten you, ignored you? Lay it down. Your options are to let love cover it – because Christian love really does cover a multitude of sins, or else you may need to confront it. Go to your brother or sister privately, and if it’s particularly thorny, ask a trusted friend or parent or elder to go with you. But you must be at peace with one another, as far as it depends upon you.
Every week, we say that we are showing the Lord’s death in this meal until He comes. One of the ways we are showing the Lord’s death is by showing the death of all our sin, but not just your individual sin, but also the sin of everyone around you. In Isaiah, the prophet foretold the day when God would swallow up death forever. So we are mimicking that here. When you swallow this bread and wine, you are confessing that Christ swallowed up your sin forever in His death. But if He swallowed up your sin, then He also swallowed up her sin, his sin, our sin. And therefore, you promising as you eat and drink that you have no grudges, no resentment, no bitterness because that is how Christ welcomes you.
So come and welcome to Jesus Christ.