The Lord’s Supper
LUK 22: 14 And when the hour was come, he sat down, and the twelve apostles with him.
LUK 22: 15 And he said unto them, With desire I have desired to eat this passover with you before I suffer:
LUK 22: 16 For I say unto you, I will not any more eat thereof, until it be fulfilled in the kingdom of God.
LUK 22: 17 And he took the cup, and gave thanks, and said, Take this, and divide it among yourselves:
LUK 22: 18 For I say unto you , I will not drink of the fruit of the vine, until the kingdom of God shall come .
LUK 22: 19 And he took bread, and gave thanks, and brake it, and gave unto them, saying, This is my body which is given for you: this do in remembrance of me.
LUK 22: 20 Likewise also the cup after supper, saying, This cup is the new testament in my blood, which is shed for you.
This is one of the two sacraments Jesus gave to his disciples for all Christians to perform – Baptism and Communion. It originally involves people seated around the table, breaking bread and drinking wine in prayer, in his name. And still, devout Christians are found to do this today, and it is particularly suitable to those who do not visit church regularly but do meet regularly for the breaking of bread and drinking of wine during lunch or supper. MAT 18: 20 For where two or three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them.
This ritual, as performed by the church of the early days, has proved not very practical in the church which developed.
The number of people is so large that to prepare meat, bread and wine, or even just bread and wine for all of them proofed a laborious and time-consuming task, not to mention the cost. So the church simplified the ceremonies, giving just one piece of bread broken between two fingers to each person, and this done by the minister/priest, not by each person. Also on wine were savings made as now ( not so hygienic ) each person sipped from the silver cup the minister/priest sipped from. Centuries after the Catholics invented ‘Wavers’ to replace the expensive and bulky bread – for now, numbers were in the millions worldwide. One small pack of wavers would save baskets full or bread in cost, and also much space.
Now, having this sacrament to perform with all the Christians, in worship, love and devotion, the church, developing with Nicolatianism, quickly conquered it from the people. This way they could exercise even more power over the weak who cannot see clearly, though Christ called them to his light, and not to the deceit of the Churches. Suddenly communion was to be performed by ministers/priest, as if it was theirs, though it is ours: fathers and mothers ought to perform it with the children and Christian friends etc. as described in :
– Then they that gladly received his word were baptized: and the same day there were added unto them about three thousand souls.
– Act 2:42 And they continued steadfastly in the apostles’ doctrine and fellowship, and in breaking of bread, and in prayers.
To enter a church, break bread, eat, and drink wine, then walk out again would be rather trivial for the occasion, so the churches added a ceremony around this communion. This ceremony differs from church to church and is a mixture of prayers, readings and blessings, to then climax with the breaking of bread, also called ‘Eucharist’. This connects the participant to the communion and invokes devotion.
Single Christians who don’t visit church should try to gather at least occasionally with others like them to break bread, drink wine and pray. Here they should also experience the holy spirit together as this truth is confirmed in:
MAT 18: 20 (Jesus) For where two or three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them.
BREAKING OF BREAD FOR NON-CHURCHGOING BELIEVERS
Christ does not demand, and does not appreciate lengthy prayers and ceremonies, but only those in spirit and in truth.
Bread and wine are on the table with any meats, vegetables etc. Be seated, start with some prayers you choose, you may also use readings ( mind you not to let the food go cold). Then brake the bread together and eat it, reciting Jesus’ words, then drink the wine (any wine, just wine), reciting his words. Then you may eat and conclude with prayers and readings. By all means, make up your own procedure, as long as you do what he asked from you in memory of him – break the bread and drink the wine – or use fruit juice for those who do not drink and don’t want to, as well as for the children.
Note: as Paul the Apostle warns, beware that, if participants have not eaten before they join the dinner they do respect the purpose and do not throw their hands on the foods in hunger whilst disregarding the preceding communion.