Read: I Corinthians 11:17-34
Think: How would you feel if you received a letter that started with, “But in the following instructions, I cannot praise you. For it sounds as if more harm than good is done when you meet together. First, I hear that there are divisions among you when you meet as a church, and to some extent I believe it.” Would you feel convicted, discouraged, or motivated to improve the situation upon reading it? (We actually don’t know how the Corinthians felt because Paul’s letter to them is a one-way communication!) But we do know why Paul is upset with them. They have become selfish in the way they practice communion. So Paul determines to get them back on track, saying, “Examine yourselves…”
Act: In the 21st century, we don’t come hungry to the communion table. In fact, most churches humbly share a simple communion pattern: believers corporately receive the elements that represent Christ’s body being broken for them (bread) and His blood being shed for their sins (juice). Though today’s experience is much different than the early church, in this passage, Paul gives universal instruction regarding the importance and practice of communion. First of all, he says, remember why you are receiving communion—you are announcing to the world that Jesus shed His blood and gave His body on the cross for you. Second, examine yourself before you receive communion. How? Consider your sins before partaking of communion. Ask Jesus to forgive you for them and thank Him for being the sacrificial lamb who was crucified on your behalf. The next time you take communion, come humbly and gratefully to the communion table.
Pray: Dear Lord, thank you for the gift of communion. Thank you for giving me the opportunity to announce my love and gratefulness to the world for the sacrifice You made for me by dying on the cross. Oh how I love you, Jesus. Amen.
Be full of faith today!