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Communion Meditations (2020)

 

PowerPoint

First Corinthians 10:16-17

Originally scheduled for June 7

Those who spend their days within office walls are undoubtedly familiar with a product known as Microsoft PowerPoint. Its purpose is to provide an easy way to make a presentation to other people with the best possible introduction for your ideas. It is composed of two general items:

·         The bulk of the presentation is given in an outline format. The idea is that you will catch the main bullets from the slide on the screen, which is then explained by the presenter in his talk. He may also hand you other reference materials for further reading. The primary idea, however, is that you understand his thesis by seeing it outlined in big, bold letters. This technique is most successful when it is short and to the point.

·         Accompanying these outlines are various graphics, which illustrate the point being made. For example, if the speaker is trying to present to you an idea which he thinks will be overwhelmingly successful, he might present a picture of someone hitting a homerun. The illustration must be something which is easy to connect to the outline, and serve as an aid to your memory of the presentation.

The objectives of a PowerPoint presentation are simple: that you will understand what the presenter wanted you to know, and that you will remember it.

In today’s Scripture we come upon an argument that Paul is making concerning meat sacrificed to idols. It’s a problem that hasn’t bothered Christians for about 1500 years, so we will spend no great time on it. But in the middle of that presentation he makes a point worth noting today. Please remember that in his time communion would be taken with a common cup, shared by everyone, and a common loaf of bread. (This method is still used in many churches today.) Paul uses that common nature to make his point. Partaking from the same cup implies that we are sharing in the blood of Christ. Partaking from the same loaf, that we are sharing from the body of Christ. You are what you eat; you are therefore the body of Christ. The loaf, the cup are pictures of the body and blood of Christ. Since he is one, and wants us to be one as He and the Father are one, we are to be one body of Christ

This is stronger than you suspect. Listen to Paul’s letter to the Ephesians:

By referring to this, when you read you can understand my insight into the mystery of Christ, which in other generations was not made known to the sons of men, as it has now been revealed to His holy apostles and prophets in the Spirit; to be specific, that the Gentiles are fellow heirs and fellow members of the body, and fellow partakers of the promise in Christ Jesus through the gospel,

(Ephesians 3:4-6 NASB)

 

The mystery Paul refers to here is not that the Gentiles will be saved; the Jews knew that from the Old Testament. The mystery is that they will become one and the same with the Jews — one body. When you partake of communion, you proclaim Christ’s desire that we are all one, joint heirs with Jesus. Thus the Christian should be wary of belonging to a faction in his church, for Christ desires us to be one.

How do we achieve this? We must deliberately lay aside divisions in the church. More than that, we must practice forgiveness of each other, followed by reconciliation. We are to be God’s family; not his Civil War. So, as you partake today, examine yourself and see if there is anyone with whom you are at odds in the church. Practice forgiveness, work at reconciliation. Be one body!

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