The Lord’s Supper now! | 4/19/2019 | Staff
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The Lord’s Supper now!

Eating food is a formidable factor in our lives – physically and spiritually. How we eat can help us maximize our achievements, benefit our health, or enhance our sleep. In other ways, eating can dull our senses, damage our health, and destroy our sleep. Fasting can be spiritually potent – but also feasting can be spiritually moving. Both are endorsed in our Scriptures, at the proper times. But the Lord’s Supper is attractive food that is transformative.

Jesus - Lord - Supper - Narrative - Time

Jesus instituting the Lord’s Supper is a life-changing narrative. Over time there have been many theories of the Lord’s Supper’s meaning – but I still find it uniquely helpful and delightful to return to the simple original ancient story, so accessible – such as in Luke 22:7-22.

In the vibrant evangelical movement in which I was raised, the Bread and the Cup were constantly referenced as “mere symbols” of Jesus’ body and blood. However, in my youth I saw a huge problem with that interpretation. A “mere symbol” is a contradiction in terms, since true symbols are powerful and they engage directly what they symbolize. Better terms would have been “vibrant symbols,” or “transformative symbols.” In contrast, our Roman Catholic neighbors affirm that through the prayers of an ordained priest the bread is transubstantiated into the Body of Christ and the wine is transubstantiated into the Blood of Christ. Consequently, those items are no longer bread or wine – in spite of their appearances. The Scriptures do not require such metaphysics, and transubstantiation is quite a strain to believe.

Positions - Lord - Supper - Consubstantiation - Prayer

Other positions for interpreting the Lord’s Supper include “consubstantiation,” where, with the right prayer, the bread and wine become the literal Body and Blood of Christ while remaining bread and wine. There is also the “real presence” interpretation, where prayers of the clergy...
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