#1) The Lord’s Supper involves a "Backward Look" of Remembrance:

A) We must look at how Jesus came:

II Corinthians 8:9 says,

"For ye know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that, though he was rich, yet for your sakes he became poor, that ye through his poverty might be rich."

II Corinthians 5:21 says,

"For he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him."

Jesus left all of Heaven’s glory to be born in a manger, die on Calvary’s cross, and be buried in a borrowed tomb. But thanks be to God that He came!!!!!

The hymn writer W.G. Ovens wrote:

Wounded for me, wounded for me, there on the cross He was wounded for me;

Gone my transgressions and now I am free, all because Jesus was wounded for me.

Dying for me, dying for me, there on the cross He was dying for me;

Now in His death my redemption I see, all because Jesus was dying for me.

Risen for me, risen for me, up from the grave He has risen for me;

Now evermore from death’s sting I am free, all because Jesus has risen for me.

Living for me, living for me, up in the skies He is living for me;

Daily He’s pleading and praying for me, all because Jesus is living for me.

Coming for me, coming for me, one day to earth He is coming for me;

Then with what joy His dear face I shall see, O how I praise Him, He’s coming for me!!!

The Lord’s Supper is a time when we can look back and remember what a sorry state and what a sad spiritual condition we were in as sinner’s, and to look back at the one who became poor that we might be made rich and to look back at the one who became sin for us who knew no sin!

I can’t believe that He would do that for sinful man, I cannot comprehend what love it took to do that, but I am so glad that He did, AMEN!!!!!

And so we look at how He came and

B) We must look at the cost HE paid:

I Corinthians 11:23 says,

"For I have received of the Lord that which also I delivered unto you, That the Lord Jesus the same night in which he was betrayed took bread."

Jesus knew that He would be betrayed by one of those closest to Him. The Bible says that this was a familiar thing for the Lord Jesus. John’s Gospel says in John 1:11,

"He came unto his own, and his own received him not."

Isaiah 53:3 foretold of His rejection saying,

"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."

Hebrews 12:2 & 3 says,

"Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God. For consider him that endured such contradiction of sinners against himself, lest ye be wearied and faint in your minds."

We must look at how Jesus came and look at the cost He paid and,

C) We must look at the Cross:

His body was broken and His precious blood was shed. In a short while, we will have a prayer over the elements of the unleavened bread and the juice which are representations of the broken body and the shed blood of our Lord Jesus.

I Peter 2:24 says,

"Who his own self bare our sins in his own body on the tree, that we, being dead to sins, should live unto righteousness: by whose stripes ye were healed."

Hebrews 9:11 & 12 says,

"But Christ being come an high priest of good things to come, by a greater and more perfect tabernacle, not made with hands, that is to say, not of this building; Neither by the blood of goats and calves, but by his own blood he entered in once into the holy place, having obtained eternal redemption for us."

Crucifixion was one of the most tortuous and painful ways that the Romans had for executing criminals. One Medical Doctor was asked to put the death by Crucifixion into medical terms:

The cross is placed on the ground and the exhausted man is quickly thrown backwards with his shoulders against the wood. The executioner feels for the depression at the front of the wrist. He then drives a heavy, square wrought-iron spike through the wrist and deep into the wood. Quickly he moves to the other side and repeats the action, being careful not to pull the arms too tightly, but to allow some flex and movement. The cross is then lifted into place.

The left foot is pressed backward against the right foot, and with both feet extended, toes down, a nail is driven through the arch of each, leaving the knees flexed. The victim is now considered crucified.

As he slowly sags down with more weight on the nails in the wrists, excruciating, fiery pain shoots along the fingers and up the arms to explode in the brain—the nails in the wrists are putting pressure on the median nerves.

As he pushes himself upward to avoid this stretching torment, he places the full weight on the nail through his feet. Again he feels the searing agony of the nail tearing through the nerves between the bones of his feet.

As the arms begin to fatigue, cramps sweep throughout all the muscles, knotting them in deep, relentless, throbbing pain. With these cramps comes the inability to push himself upward to breathe. Air can be drawn into the lungs but not exhaled out. He fights to raise himself in order to get even one small breath. Finally carbon dioxide builds up in the lungs and in the blood stream. Spasmodically he is able to push himself upward to exhale and bring in life-giving oxygen.

Hours of this limitless pain, to include cycles of twisting, joint-rending cramps, intermittent partial asphyxiation, searing pain as tissue is torn from his lacerated back as he moves up and down against the rough timber.

Then another agony begins: a deep, crushing pain deep in the chest as the pericardium (heart muscle) slowly fills with serum and begins to compress the heart.

It is now almost over—the loss of tissue fluids has reached a critical level—the compressed heart is struggling to pump heavy, thick, sluggish blood into the tissues—the tortured lungs are making a frantic effort to gasp in small gulps of air.

He can feel the chill of death creeping through his tissues. . .and finally he can allow his body to die. And Jesus said in John 19:30,

"It is finished (the price had been paid): and he bowed his head, and gave up the ghost."

We must never forget what Jesus did for us on the cross!!!

We said that the Lord’s Supper involves a Backward Look of remembrance, it also involves,

#2) An Inward Look of Examination:

Once again I Corinthians 11:28 says,

"But let a man examine himself, and so let him eat of that bread, and drink of that cup."

Paul was telling these newly saved, former pagans that they were celebrating the Lord’s Supper in an unworthy manner, and they were. The truth is that no one is truly worthy and it is all of God’s grace that we are able to partake of the Lord’s Supper.

Paul was not saying that these Corinthians were unworthy, we are all unworthy, but I believe he was telling them that the manner in which they were behaving was unworthy of the body and blood of the Lord Jesus. He had heard that they were having a drunken, gluttonous, selfish, food feast and that they needed to be rebuked.

Paul told these believers that they need to do a personal inventory before partaking of the elements and to come together after an inward examination of their hearts. We also need to have an inward look of examination before we partake of the Lord’s Supper.

Paul said in I Corinthians 11:27,

"Wherefore whosoever shall eat this bread, and drink this cup of the Lord, unworthily, shall be guilty of the body and blood of the Lord."

In verse 29 Paul goes on to say,

"For he that eateth and drinketh unworthily, eateth and drinketh damnation to himself, not discerning the Lord's body."

Paul even went so far to say that this was the reason that many Corinthians were sick and dying. Look at verse 30,

"For this cause many are weak and sickly among you, and many sleep."

Two things here:

  1. To partake of the Lord’s Supper and not know Him as Lord and Savior is to take of it unworthily. This memorial of the Lord’s death is for those who have trusted in Christ for the salvation of their souls. If you’re here this morning and you have never trusted Christ as your Savior, you’ve never been "Born Spiritually," then you really have no reason to celebrate the true meaning of the Lord’s Supper. You need to come at the invitation and come down to the front and have someone share the Good news of Jesus’ death, burial, and resurrection. You can be saved today and receive the free gift of eternal life.
  2. To partake of the Lord’s Supper and not be living a Christian life that is bringing glory and honor to the Lord is to take of it unworthily. After all the Lord has done for us, the least we can do for Him is to give our lives a living sacrifice for Him. Romans 12:1 says,

"I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service."

It was not unreasonable of Paul to expect these Corinthian Christians to live in such a way and to partake of the Lord’s Supper in such a way that would bring honor and glory to His name!!!!! And God expects no less from Christians in 2007!!!

Have you examined your life to make sure that your heart is right with God?

Have you examined your life to make sure that you are not harboring bitterness toward another believer?

Have you examined your life to make sure that you have no unconfessed sin in your heart?

Whatever your need today, in a moment we will have a time of invitation and it’s a time to look inwardly and take these things to the Lord.

We said #1) The Lord's Supper involves a "Backward Look" of Remembrance,

#2) It involves an Inward Look of Examination,

And, #3) It involves and Upward look of Expectancy:

In Matthew's gospel the Lord Jesus is telling His disciples that the next time that they will celebrate the Lord’s Supper with Him will be in heaven. In Matthew 26:29 Jesus says,

"I will not drink henceforth of this fruit of the vine, until that day when I drink it new with you in my Father's kingdom."

I believe that we are living in a day and time where the Lord can come back at any moment. Jesus talked more about His second coming than about His first coming and we need to live the Christian life expecting that He could come at any time. Living the Christian life expectantly will help us to live worthily for Him.

II Peter 3:10-14 says,

"But the day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night; in the which the heavens shall pass away with a great noise, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat, the earth also and the works that are therein shall be burned up. Seeing then that all these things shall be dissolved, what manner of persons ought ye to be in all holy conversation and godliness, Looking for and hasting unto the coming of the day of God, wherein the heavens being on fire shall be dissolved, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat? Nevertheless we, according to his promise, look for new heavens and a new earth, wherein dwelleth righteousness. Wherefore, beloved, seeing that ye look for such things, be diligent that ye may be found of him in peace, without spot, and blameless."

Let's decide that as we come to the Lord’s Table today that we are going to look back in remembrance, look inward in examination, and look upward in expectancy.

Let's pray!