Lord’s Supper


To confess the Lord Jesus Christ, His doctrine, and His church belongs to the most significant objectives of the Lord’s Supper. Observe this in the following passages: “This do ye…in remembrance of Me….ye do show the Lord’s death till he come” (1 Cor. 11:25-26); “For we being many are one bread, and one body” (1 Cor. 10:17). It is an absolutely necessary, appropriate, and Christ-glorifying duty to confess Christ, for this duty builds up the congregation and refreshes the soul (II: 65).

Reflection [on the Lord’s Supper] consists in a continual looking unto and having fellowship with the Lord. “…walk before Me, and be thou perfect” (Gen. 17:1); “And Enoch walked with God” (Gen. 5:24). To that end it is necessary that one views God in Christ as a reconciled Father. Even when spiritual light dissipates, if one falls into sin and if strife comes, one must nevertheless hold fast to the immovableness of the covenant. It is neither your feeling nor your standing or falling which determines the steadfastness or stability of the covenant; rather, it is based on the immutability of God. “For the mountains shall depart, and the hills be removed; but My kindness shall not depart from thee, neither shall the covenant of My peace be removed, saith the LORD that hath mercy on thee” (Isa. 54:10); “For I am the LORD, I change not; therefore ye sons of Jacob are not consumed” (Mal. 3:6). Therefore do not succumb so readily; hold fast what you have, be steadfast in faith, and conduct yourself manfully. If, according to your feeling, you cannot conclude the certainty of your state, then make the conclusion judgmentally. Observe this in the following passages: “Likewise reckon ye also yourselves to be dead indeed unto sin, but alive unto God through Jesus Christ our Lord” (Rom. 6:11); “Because we thus judge, that if one died for all, then were all dead” (2 Cor. 5:14). Therefore set the Lord continually before you and live in a continual dialogue with Him–at one time pray, then ask for counsel, then express your dependence upon Him, then wait upon Him, then reverently worship Him, then rest in Him, then thank Him, and then again, offer yourself to His service. Acquaint yourself thus with Him (II: 596].

The most important part of Christ’s suffering experientially, is that he suffered for us! Christ interceded on our behalf on the cross and he lives to make intercession for us in heaven. Jesus Christ prays for us! He prays for our conformity to his image. This should bring us great hope as we come to the Lord’s table tomorrow. Christ intercedes for us. He who has begun a good work in you will bring it to completion!

Isaiah 53:11-12 He shall see of the travail of his soul, and shall be satisfied: by his knowledge shall my righteous servant justify many; for he shall bear their iniquities. Therefore will I divide him a portion with the great, and he shall divide the spoil with the strong; because he hath poured out his soul unto death: and he was numbered with the transgressors; and he bare the sin of many, and made intercession for the transgressors.

For he IS the intercessor, and he that procured your entering in the way, will carry you on in it. He that procured a sanctified conviction to come in, will complete it! He that procured your justification, and pardon of sin, will also apply it to your conscience, and forth an intimation of it, when he thinks fit and sanctify you thoroughly. And this is indeed a great consolation to a sinner, that he who has begun a great work will perfect it; and he will not leave it; till it be at such a height of perfection, as it can be desired to be no higher! -Durham

We Reformed Christians can become so proud. We often ask ourselves and each other why people cannot see their need for redemption and the necessity of the cross. We become proud and we alienate those to whom the message of salvation by free grace needs to be heard.

We easily forget that it is all of Christ. It is not of us.

It was HIS wounds, it was HIS stripes, it was HIS bruises.

And why?

For OUR sin. For OUR reconciliation. For OUR peace. For OUR iniquity to be healed.

Isaiah 53:5-6 But he was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we are healed. 6 All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned every one to his own way; and the LORD hath laid on him the iniquity of us all.

He again directs us to Christ, that we may betake ourselves to his wounds, provided that we wish to regain life. Here the Prophet draws a contrast between us and Christ; for in us nothing call be found but destruction and death; in Christ alone is life and salvation, he alone brought medicine to us, and even procures health by his weakness, and life by his death; for he alone hath pacified the Father, he alone hath reconciled us to him. Here we might bring forward many things about the blessed consequences of Christ’s sufferings, if we had not determined to expound rather than to preach; and therefore let us be satisfied with a plain exposition. Let every one, therefore, draw consolation from this passage, and let him apply the blessed result of this doctrine to his own use; for these words are spoken to all in general, and to individuals in particular. -Calvin

Something that is very disturbing in the current evangelical impressions of Jesus Christ was that he was a cheerful and happy man. 10 minutes in any ‘Christian’ bookstore will reveal posters, paintings, and greeting cards of a happy Jesus with a great smile. This conception of Christ is foreign to the testimony of the Scriptures.

Jesus was the man of sorrows.

The weight of his calling to reconcile sinners to God was so impressed into the person of Christ, that the Scriptures record that he sweat blood during intercessory prayer.

We take the Christ of the Scriptures for granted. We forget the seriousness of the Christian life and the serious nature of our calling to holiness and to reflect Jesus Christ. This is not a call to constant sorrows; but we must remember the difficult life that Christ lived on our behalf. He was sinless, yet lived his whole life with the weight of the knowledge of the sinfulness of sin. This led to a life of real and constant sorrow.

Isaiah 53:3-4 He is despised and rejected of men; a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief: and we hid as it were our faces from him; he was despised, and we esteemed him not. Surely he hath borne our griefs, and carried our sorrows: yet we did esteem him stricken, smitten of God, and afflicted.

His spirit was tender, and he admitted the impressions of sorrow. We never read that he laughed, but often that he wept. Lentulus, in his epistle to the Roman senate concerning Jesus, says, “he was never seen to laugh;” and so worn and macerated was he with continual grief that when he was but a little above thirty years of age he was taken to be nearly fifty, Jn. 8:57. Grief was his intimate acquaintance; for he acquainted himself with the grievances of others, and sympathized with them, and he never set his own at a distance; for in his transfiguration he talked of his own decease, and in his triumph he wept over Jerusalem. Let us look unto him and mourn. -MH

For preparation for the sacrament of the Lord’s Supper, I will be meditating on Isaiah 53. This week will be dedicated to some thoughts on the Suffering Servant, Jesus Christ.

Isaiah 53:1-2 Who hath believed our report? and to whom is the arm of the LORD revealed? For he shall grow up before him as a tender plant, and as a root out of a dry ground: he hath no form nor comeliness; and when we shall see him, there is no beauty that we should desire him.

Nothing about Jesus Christ was what the Jews of the day were looking for. They desired a prince to come and rule in Jerusalem and to free them from all of their outward oppression. Little did they know that what they needed above all things was a Christ that would build a spiritual kingdom. I imagine that each one of us, if we were in the same cultural circumstances, would be highly tempted to reject King Jesus, who appeared to be anything than a king. Our king looked more like a pauper.

John Gill said that in Christ there was, “nothing that looks grand and majestic, or like a king; they [unbelieving Israel] not beholding with an eye of faith his glory, as the glory of the only begotten of the Father; only viewing him in his outward circumstances, and so made their estimate of him; they expected the Messiah as a temporal prince, appearing in great pomp and state, to deliver them from the Roman yoke, and restore their nation to its former splendour and glory; and being disappointed herein was the true reason of their unbelief, before complained of, and why they did not desire him, who is the desire of all nations.”

Many have a wrong perception of themselves; they measure themselves by themselves. They deem themselves to be fit, for they have no disagreement with their neighbor, are baptized, diligently go to hear God’s Word, live in such a manner that no one can say anything about them, and believe that Christ is the Savior–one must thus not doubt that one will also be saved and that Christ is also his Savior. Therefore all is truly well–Christ invites and commands us, and I then wish to be obedient to the Lord in this respect. Others add to this the fact that, prior to that time, they refrain from indulging in their bosom sins, read pious books, and pray more frequently. One thus puts himself into a pious mold and peacefully attends, eating and drinking judgment to himself (II: 578).