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Communion Meditations (2021)

 

Egypt

Originally scheduled for November 28

It sometimes escapes the notice of the average Christian that the Lord’s Supper is based upon the Jewish festival of Passover. We tend to look at it and see the same menu, but not much else. The fact is that Christ deliberately used Passover to institute communion because of the significance they share.

·         The first thing they share is slavery. The Jews were slaves to Pharaoh and the Egyptians; we were slaves to sin. Communion in Passover are both about escaping from that slavery.

·         It’s worth noting that all of us are slaves; the escape — “The Exodus” — is offered to all. Moses did not take time to determine which Jews were worthy and which ones were not. Christ has no criterion set out for who is a “worthy sinner.”

·         To this day, the modern Jew acknowledges his identification with the Exodus. The passages recited are in the present tense, and personal. In communion we remember Christ’s suffering — and apply it to ourselves.

·         Both ceremonies have a prophetic forward look. Passover looks forward to the coming of the Messiah; communion looks forward to his return.

·         Both ceremonies were attested to by God. Moses had his 10 plagues; Christ, the resurrection. Both show the unmistakable hand of God in the affairs of men.

We might add to this that our escape is not just from an abstract called “sin.” It is also our escape from the control of Satan, just as the ancient Jews escaped Egypt and their control by Pharaoh. We escape from a system, but we also escape from an individual.

How closely these two are connected may be seen at the Transfiguration. Consider this passage from Luke, chapter 9:

And behold, two men were talking with Him; and they were Moses and Elijah, who, appearing in glory, were speaking of His departure which He was about to accomplish at Jerusalem.

(Luke 9:30-31 NASB)

The word translated as “departure” is, in the Greek, “exodos.”

Of course, our salvation does not come without cost. It’s just that we couldn’t pay the cost — so He did. By his body and his blood he purchased our salvation. But it is up to us to participate in the Exodus. We need to leave Satan and sin behind. Therefore examine yourself this morning.

Let’s end with some good news. The departure means nothing if there is not a destination. The Jew had a destination: The Promised Land. We have a destination too. More than that, we have the path marked out for us. Christ told us that he is the way — and without the way, there is no going. Leave the world of sin, follow Christ who is the way and depart to the Promised Land.

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