How should we Christians celebrate the Lord’s Supper?
In Acts 2, Luke reports that the first Christians were “continually devoting themselves to… the breaking of bread”. “Breaking of bread” became a technical term for “the Lord’s Supper”.
“Day by day continuing with one mind in the temple, and breaking bread from house to house, they were taking their meals together with gladness and sincerity of heart, praising God…”
This tells us some important things:
First, they shared a full meal when they gathered. But, it also tells us their attitude as they did so: “with gladness and sincerity of heart, praising God.”
These meals—later called The Lord’s Supper—were reminders of The Last Supper (a full Passover meal) which Jesus shared with His disciples the night before His death. They should also remind us of the meal promised for Christ’s future kingdom—the marriage supper of the Lamb—which all believers will enjoy in Christ’s visible, physical presence (Revelation 19).
Please know that we are not legalistic about this practice, but it seems best to us to enjoy a full meal together as we “proclaim Christ’s death until He comes, because we believe these shared meals accomplish some very important things:
- First and foremost, they put the gospel message at the heart of every meeting as we do exactly what Jesus instructed us to do: “Remember” His death and resurrection.
- They help define our simple church gatherings as churches. It is vital to the strength and mission of our churches that they be perceived as churches, and not simply as small groups. Celebrating the Lord’s Supper is a defining practice of a local church.
- They visualize the church as a family. Just as the early church “broke bread from house to house,” appearing very much like families, we believe these meals will create the same sense of family in each of our churches.
- They create a natural fellowship-building element. Across all cultures, a shared meal creates an environment conducive to hospitality and relationship-building.
- They naturally lead to good works. In the early church, extra food was given to the poor each time the church shared a meal. We believe that sharing meals together will encourage our members to open their homes at other times to both the physically and spiritually impoverished.
- They are simple and universal. No matter who comes, no matter who hosts, a meal is something to which everyone can contribute.
We believe the church lost something very important when “The Lord’s Supper” became a brief ritual tacked onto a “service” where everyone is seated in rows facing the backs of each other’s heads. No meal. No conversation.
So, we are trying to recapture the original intent of Christ and His Apostles. We’re taking the time each Sunday evening to break bread together. Remembering the body of Christ broken. The blood of Christ shed for us. We’re sitting down at tables, facing each other. Time spent together. Conversation and laughter, enjoying a full meal together with glad and sincere hearts, building fellowship. The way “church” was meant to be.
Come and join us. In fact, try this: Attend a Sunday morning service at the church of your choice, then come and “break bread” with us. See the difference for yourself.