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Communion Meditations (2006)

On Currency

Originally delivered March 26

Have you closely examined one of the new twenty dollar bills in circulation?  The Treasury has gone to great lengths to resist the assault of counterfeiters.  Turn it so that it’s Jackson side up, and if you catch it in the right light you can see much that you might otherwise miss:

· Over to the left side, in a ghostly silver is a dramatic American eagle, clutching the traditional arrows and olive branch. 

· On the right side, in the same light, you’ll see two wavy lines of text:  “Twenty USA” and underneath that “USA Twenty.” 

· A little further to the right—if you hold it up so that the light is behind the bill—you will see a second picture of Andrew Jackson.

If you look at the back side, you will find what appears to be a random scattering of the number 20, in yellow, over the blank areas.  There are other devices; but this is a communion meditation, not a class for counterfeiters.  Indeed, the new design is intended to deter counterfeiters as much as possible.  Even as difficult as these things would appear to make counterfeiting, it still happens—in large amounts.  One thing does remain the same:  no one attempts to counterfeit a twenty-five dollar bill.  All twenty-five dollar bills are counterfeit.
No one counterfeits that which is worthless.  So when someone tells you that all Christians are hypocrites, remind him of this.  If we’re all counterfeit Christians, then Christianity must be like the twenty-five dollar bill.  No, real Christianity is so precious that the temptation to counterfeiting is very great.  But just how would someone counterfeit a Christian at communion?  One way would be to take it very casually, as if it had no significance at all.  Or contemptuously, as if you were God’s judge.  But the most common way is to act very dignified and humble at the same time—pious pretension—so that you’ll look like the real thing.

If this is you, please—take this warning seriously.  Paul tells us that sickness and even death can be the result:

For he who eats and drinks, eats and drinks judgment to himself if he does not judge the body rightly. For this reason many among you are weak and sick, and a number sleep.

(1Co 11:29-30 NASB)

Can it be that God would react this way?  Hear again the apostle:

You cannot drink the cup of the Lord and the cup of demons; you cannot partake of the table of the Lord and the table of demons. Or do we provoke the Lord to jealousy? We are not stronger than He, are we?

(1Co 10:21-22 NASB)

Ultimately, however, the rejection is not in this world—but at Christ’s return. 

"Then you will begin to say, 'We ate and drank in Your presence, and You taught in our streets'; and He will say, 'I tell you, I do not know where you are from; DEPART FROM ME, ALL YOU EVILDOERS.'

(Luk 13:26-27 NASB)

Consider well; God’s wallet contains no counterfeits.

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