The Eucharistic Table is not the Heavenly Wedding Banquet

Jesus told his disciples that he would not drink wine with them again until he returned in his kingdom of glory.  Our Eucharistic table is not the heavenly wedding banquet.  For now, it is the sacrificial meal in which Christ is the food and drink.  Yet each time we gather, we not only proclaim Christs death until he comes; we participate in the renewing powers of the age to come.  We taste the morsels of that wedding banquet when the meal of Christ’s sacrifice will become the feast of unending delight.  For on that day, Christ will be the host rather than the meal and we will eat and drink with him  in an everlasting exchange of gifts.

Horton, Michael; The Gospel Driven Life: Being Good News People in a Bad News World; Baker Books; Grand Rapids, MI; Copyright 2009; page 241-242

The Saints, Today, Are Being Improverished

Calvin and other reformers argued that the Supper should occupy a central place alongside preaching each week.  Yet its strange absence from the regular gathering of many churches today impoverishes the saints, weaken the diet and the sinews that connect us to our living Head and to each other as members of his body, and dampens the gratitude that feeds our missionary zeal.  It is the Eucharist, along with preaching and baptism, that not only generates a church in the first place, but keeps its focus on Christ’s presence in action as well as his absence in the flesh, generating our longing for his return.

Horton, Michael; The Gospel Driven Life: Being Good News People in a Bad News World; Baker Books; Grand Rapids, MI; Copyright 2009; page 202-203

These Are the Spirit’s Weapons in the Kingdom of Christ

Word, baptism and the Supper: these are the Spirit’s weapons in the kingdom that Christ is building.  Throughout our warfare in this life, the Spirit brings us back to our location “in Christ”, signified and sealed in our baptism and our shared meal.  Through these means of grace, the Spirit not only gathers us together in Christ but continues to build us up into Christ as our living head.  In this way, the church is no longer merely one voluntary association alongside others, but the only truly cross-cultural communion of saints in the world.

Horton, Michael; The Gospel Driven Life: Being Good News People in a Bad News World; Baker Books; Grand Rapids, MI; Copyright 2009; page 202

The Lord’s Supper Is Past, Present and Future

God addresses us in his Word.  We see his promise ratified in baptism and receive Christ’s sacrifice afresh in the Supper.  Paul reminds us that Communion links us to Christ’s sacrifice in the past (I Corinthians 11:24-25).  It also directs us to the future: “For as often as you eat this bread and drink this cum, you proclaim the Lord’s death until he comes again” (I Corinthians 11:26)  Even in the present we fed on Christ’s body and blood by faith: “The cup of blessing, which we bless, is not a participation in the blood of Christ?  The bread which we break , is it not a participation in the body of Christ?” (I Corinthians 10:16).  Connected together to our Living Head in heaven, we are joined together as one body on earth: “For we, though many, are one bread and one body; for we all partake of that one bread”  (I Corinthians 10:17).

Horton, Michael; The Gospel Driven Life: Being Good News People in a Bad News World; Baker Books; Grand Rapids, MI; Copyright 2009; page 215