The Lord’s Dinner

1 Corinthians 11: 17-34 (Audio Sermon)

When Jesus broke bread saying ‘this is my body,’ he and his disciples were eating a full Passover meal. When he held up the cup and said ‘this is the new covenant in my blood’ he held up the third cup out of four. Later when Paul rebukes the Corinthians for their selfish behavior at the Lord’s Supper we see that the early believers were still eating a full meal. It was known as a ‘love feast.’ In this audio sermon we journey from the Jewish Passover to the Last Supper, then on to the Corinthian love feast, and compare all these meals with the little cups and wafers we use today. Click the arrow to play –

Speakers notes follow –

The Lord’s Dinner

1 Corinthians 11: 17-34

The Lord’s Supper/Dinner (20) – own private suppers … one remains hungry and another gets drunk (21) – Full meal. Passover continued – Love feast (Jude 12)

Passover – full meal between breaking bread and Christs cup – our little cups & wafers represent full meal (bracketed)

Need to understand – Jewish celebration, Christ’s fulfillment, Corinthian situation

Our Jewishness – The Lounge – Jew & Christian singing ‘I Know Who I am’

Jewish Celebration – Generations to remember God’s salvation of his people – in slavery – plagues – firstborn – blood on posts – angel passed over – delivered – promised land – nation of Israel

Christ’s Fulfillment – Luke 22:14-20

‘Eagely desired to eat this Passover with you before I suffer, for I tell you I will not eat it again until it finds fulfilment in the kingdom of God’ (15)

Full meal – after supper he took the cup (20)

Ceremonial family meal – father or eldest led

Meal – lamb, bread, bitter herbs, wine – 4 cups (2 before – 2 after)

First Cup – not mentioned – starts proceedings with prayer – maybe with ‘Eagerly desired’ statement – its seems official

Starter – bitter herbs & fruit sauce – everyone goes ‘Yikes so bitter!’

Lamb & bread arrives – Youngest asks meaning – Eldest explains

– Remember: bitter slavery, unleavened – leaving trappings of Egypt behind – lamb: saved by blood – Passover considered a sacrifice in Jesus times

Sing Psalm 113-114 (Exodus)

Second Cup – ‘Take divide – not drink – fruit of vine until’ (17)

– wine as in 1 Co 11 – Cana wine today – sweet 11% alc

Bread – grace said – ‘ thanks ‘ is Eucharisteo – broke it – unleavened – my body – new interpretation (fulfill)

Lamb with bread – both his body – lamb broken on table too – what would you be eyeing; bread or lamb? – ‘Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life’ (Jn 6: 54) – symbol of internalizing his life

Rememberance – Exodus thing – remember me (person) not just benefits (19)

Remembrance – Missionary to CAR ‘forgot who’

Third Cup – after supper – Cup of Thanksgiving (20) – new covenant in my blood – blood sealed agreements – now God’s blood. Meal over.

Sing Psalm 114-118

Fourth Cup – celebrates new kingdom of Israel (promised land) – ‘I confer on you a kingdom – so you may eat – at the table in my kingdom’ (29)

After resurrection – realized – lamb – blood – posts – body broken – delivery from slavery – fulfillment.

Corinthians Situation

Love feasts – full meal fellowship continued – followed pattern of Greeks – main meal late afternoon – bring & share (potluck) – rich bring more – poor less

Vineyard Love feasts – Once a month. Bring n share. Evening. Tables around parameter. Move around sampling food. Wives brought much – singles brought crisps!

Not the Lord’s supper – mockery of his sacrifice (20)

Cliques developed – rich had their own private suppers – even drank too much – poor hungry & humiliated

Greco-romans big on class segregation – Christ makes all equal

Do we do this? We should befriend all classes, races, tribes

Want a love feast? Would those at the front pile plate while the last have scraps? When we take donuts do we grab 5 and others get none? Discern the body

Camera set on selfie

Rhetorical questions (22) imply – Eat your lavish meals at home – if you don’t think the poor deserve good food, eat it at home. Do you despise the church of God – don’t you care that the poor are your brothers and they are humiliated? You want me to congratulate (praise)you?

I received from the Lord (23) – oral transmission via the twelve – what we just studied in Luke

‘So then’ – ‘sinning against body and blood of the Lord’ (27)

Warns against communion with wrong attitude – examine self – judge selves so you are not judged

Discern body (in bread & church) – judgement – some sick, died

Don’t take communion if unrepentant – Don’t let kids take if not understanding – if they see it as ordinary food. Only baptize when understanding

Ends positive requesting they eat together waiting for each other.

Some say Jesus’ story is made up – if someone dreamed it up with such connections to the Passover – blood on posts – behold the lamb that takes away the sin – deliverance from slavery – new kingdom – they are the greatest story teller or all time. Its easier to believe the Bible than that.

Want to have Love Feast? Could we do it in love?

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