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May 22, 1949 THE MEANING OF THE LORD'S SUPPER Mark 14:12-25
Symbols Presented (22-25)
Pointers on the Lesson Soon Jesus would be crucified. He desired to have supper with His dis ciples before His Calvary experience. It is quite evident that the meal was not the regular Jewish Paschal Supper. John says in his gospel, “Before the feast of the passover” (13:1) this sup per was eaten. Furthermore, chapter 18:28 and chapter 19:14 make it clear that on the day following the eating of the meal with His disciples, the Pass- over proper was still future. Strictly speaking, the Paschal Supper could not be eaten until after the time of the slaying of the lambs. Christ’s crucifixion was concurrent with the Passover sacrifice. The Passover time was a period in cluding seven days, and there was more than one feast during that time. Since the supper under consideration evident ly was not the Paschal Supper, it prob ably was the first meal of the feast of unleavened bread, or the first meal of the day of preparation. On the table were the elements which Jesus was to take, bless, and make the memorials of the true Passover soon to be sacrificed. Self-Examination Suggested (17-21) These verses suggest the need for looking into the heart before the ele ments are taken. “ One of you which eateth with me shall betray me” (18). This solemn word sent each disciple searching his own heart to see what was there. Each one said, “ Is it I?” (19). Doubtless through this experience Jesus meant to teach every believer, who comes to the Lord’s table, the need for diligent self-inquiry. “ But let a man examine himself, and so let him eat of that bread, and drink of that cup” (1 Cor. 11:28).
Before Christ went away He did not erect a great building by which to be remembered. No marble shaft did He locate upon a prominent hill to direct men’s attention to His wonderful works. Instead, He took a bit of bread and blessed it, a cup of wine and sanctified it, and left them as the memorials of an infinite love and a sacrifice of inesti mable value. The nature of these memorials serves to show what Christ considered most important. They point directly to the Cross. The Lord would have His fol lowers know what was the most im portant ministry in His life. A body broken and blood spilt are the only means of man’s redemption. Our Lord left behind Him these simple memorials to help man remember this fact. These symbols should serve to remind those receiving them how much it cost the Saviour to provide such a salvation. They came as the result of the sacrifice of Divine Blood. Helps for the Children With Jesus in the Upper Room Mark 14:12-25 Memory Verse: “ This do in remem brance of me” (1 Cor. 11:2U). God wonderfully led the children of Israel out of the land of Egypt. Jews every year held the Passover feast to celebrate their deliverance. Just before His death the disciples asked the Saviour where they should prepare the feast. Jesus sent two of them into the city. When they saw a man bearing a pitcher of water, they were to follow him (be cause women usually carried the water, this would be an uncommon sight). The disciples were to ask the owner of the house into which the man entered where the guest chamber was in which Jesus and- His disciples could eat the Pass- over. After the feast was prepared, Jesus and the twelve went to the room for the. evening. The Lord told them as they ate that one of them would betray Him. They were sorrowful and each asked, “ Is it I?” As they ate, Jesus took bread, blessed it, broke it, and gave it to them, saying, “ Take, eat: this is my body.” After He prayed again, He gave the cup to them, saying, “ This is my blood . . . which is shed for many.” Today Christians celebrate the Lord’s Supper by partaking of bread or crack ers and grape juice. This is a solemn time. God has promised punishment to those who take the Lord’s Supper light ly. It is a time when Christians should ask God to cleanse their hearts and lives, and to causé them to love and serve Him more than ever. As we par take of this Supper, we should do it in remembrance of Him, praying that every other thought will be taken from our hearts and minds. T H E I C I N G ' S B U S I N E S S
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