Originally scheduled for April 31
The cup of blessing which we bless, is it not the communion of the
blood of Christ? The bread which we break, is it not the communion
of the body of Christ?
(1 Corinthians 10:16 KJV)
come as a surprise to the average Christian that there seems to be
only one verse in the Bible which refers to The Lord’s Supper as
“communion.” That verse is quoted above. It’s quoted from the King
James Version of the Bible, as that version is most influential in
determining what the English language uses for biblical translation.
The word itself, “communion”, apparently entered the church
languages through St. Augustine. He was under
impression that the Latin word communio was derived from com- "with,
together" + unus "oneness, union." This is somewhat incorrect; the
original meaning is “sharing in common.”
are other translations of the word. Various versions of the Bible
you such things as fellowship, partaking, sharing, and
participation. So you might well ask, just what should we use here?
original Greek word is koinonia. When it does not refer to the
Lord’s Supper, it is usually translated “fellowship.” As such we
might ask just what such fellowship is supposed to refer to. There
are three obvious points. The first is simple enough; it refers to
fellowship within the church locally. We, as part of the body of
Christ meeting locally, take the Lord’s Supper in remembrance of
him. His command alone is quite sufficient for this; we need no
second sense in which we take communion as fellowship is with the
church universal — all Christians in all places of all times. All
those who claim Christ as Lord constitute the church. We acknowledge
our unity and fellowship with them in anticipation of the day our
Lord will return — when we can acknowledge it in person with them.
Thirdly, we take this meal in fellowship with Christ himself. He
told us that the cup was his blood; he told us that the bread was
his body; he told us to do this in remembrance of him. Every time we
do this we fellowship with him in remembrance.
brings us to the questions of fellowship. We say we do this in
fellowship, in communion with the local body, with the church
universal and with Christ. Let us therefore examine ourselves and
see no well we are doing at the test of fellowship.
do you strengthen or weaken the bonds of fellowship in your local
church? Is your conduct such as tends to conciliate and unify the
body of Christ, or do you attempt to tear it apart in the name of
winning an argument?
what is your behavior towards those who are members of the church
universal but not your local congregation? A pointed test may be
made here: do you love your local brother but despise your Catholic
one? You claim the same Lord who instructed you not to judge your
brother but to leave that to Him.
important of all, how is your fellowship with Jesus Christ. When you
examine yourself at communion, do you find the same faults
unremedied? Do you find it difficult to go to prayer, or to meditate
on the Scriptures because of what you might find out about yourself?
Communion. How are the bonds within the meal?