Originally scheduled for September 16
me to stretch your imagination. Let’s suppose you have just moved to
a new town and are going, for the first time, to a prominent church
in this town. Somewhat to your surprise you discover that they
believe in practicing “circus communion.” The trays with the cups
are passed out by young men on unicycles who are juggling three of
the trays at a time. When they get to your aisle, they fling the
tray as if it were a Frisbee, landing it neatly in your lap. The
trays with the bread are passed by aerialists hanging from a trapeze
swinging by you and dropping the tray in your lap with great
precision. As you leave, you hear one of the church members
complaining that they really missed the 600 electric guitars and the
fireworks. But still, this is the best communion show in town.
“best communion show” is something which never occurs to most
churches, with very good reason. Besides the fact that finding
enough unicycle riding jugglers will be somewhat difficult (and the
practice sessions extremely messy) there are some good reasons not
to do it this way.
Such a show is not in the slightest conducive to the practice of
self-examination. It distracts you while it entertains you.
It also distracts you from one of its primary purposes: remembering
the death of Christ. You are to remember his sacrifice until he
comes, and this certainly would be a bad way to do it.
Finally, it is not in God’s style. He prefers his greatness to be
displayed in “jars of clay” (2nd Corinthians 4:7) so that you will
not focus on the talent of the human beings doing the work, but upon
the work being done.
how should we take communion?
It should be done in a solemn manner, as befitting the remembrance
of Christ’s death.
It should be done gratefully, as it shows to us the blood of Christ
by which we have forgiveness of sins and therefore salvation.
It should be taken with anticipation, for this is a sign that he
will return to judge the living and the dead.
are reasons we don’t have “circus communion.” But upon
self-examination, we take it in a reverent and solemn way,
remembering the Lord who gave it to us.