This table is the table of No Condemnation in Christ Jesus. You’ve probably seen communion tables in other churches engraved with the words “In Remembrance of Me”—which is an entirely fitting thing to engrave on a communion table. But another fitting phrase would be the words, No Condemnation.
There are two opposite errors of unbelief one can commit when invited to this table of No Condemnation. The first is to turn away because you know you aren’t good, you’ve sinned, and you look around at the sin and heartbreaking evil in the world and reject the offer because it seems unrealistic, naïve, a fairy tale and make-believe. How can the message of this table really do anything about those problems? The other error is to come to the table but to come not believing in condemnation. You come because it’s traditional, but you’re honestly not sure what the big deal is, everyone makes mistakes. One error doesn’t believe the condemnation can be removed, the other error doesn’t believe in the condemnation.
This table refutes both lies, both forms of unbelief. This table proclaims the reality of sin, failure, shame, guilt, pain, gnawing regret, heartbreak, despair, violence. This table proclaims the reality of sin and evil in the broken body and shed blood of an innocent man. Here, God tells the truth without flinching: this world is full of condemnation, full of guilt, full of evil.
This table also refutes the one who cannot believe that the condemnation can be taken away. Here, God proclaims that He was Himself the innocent man who was killed in the place of sinful man. God proclaims to you that the death of Jesus was not one more sorry injustice, one more unfortunate lynching, one more senseless act of violence – though it was all of those things to some extent, but here God announces that He took our sin in Christ by bearing it all Himself. He took our lies, our lust, our bitterness, our pride, our self-inflicted agony, our disobedience, all of our God damn filth. He took all our condemnation, and He crushed it in His own body on the cross, and He rose victorious over it all, that we being dead to sin might live in Him.
Therefore there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus.
So come and welcome to Jesus Christ.