body and blood
16The cup of blessing which we bless, is it not the communion
of the blood of Christ? The bread which we break, is it not the
communion of the body of Christ?
1 Corinthians 10:16
When we die to self or
reckon ourselves dead to some sin, and are lead by the Spirit
instead, we are communing with the body of Christ (I Peter 2:24,
Hebrews 10:5-10, I Corinthians 5:6-8, etc.). Whenever we exercise
the authority of the blood over some area of condemnation or death
(lack, sickness, alienation, boredom, sickness, etc.) and believe a
promise for life and blessing in its stead, we are communing with
the blood of Christ.
If one thinks about it,
every minute of our day as Christians is spent acting out one or
both of these two basic themes. When a person walks into his or her
workplace, he is immediately concerned about what he should be
doing, i.e., the body of Christ (bread). If he is trying to do
something wrong, he is not communing with the body of Christ.
Communing with the body of Christ is all about dying to our body of
sin so that we can do His will with our bodies like Jesus did Godís
will with His body. The body of Christ is all about doing the will
Because of the
deliverance from sin that His body means to us, this message of the
cross makes the bread, "freedom bread." Because of the will of God
that His body means to us, this message of the resurrection makes
the bread, "what would Jesus do" bread.
When the Christian is
trying to do his job well, even the technical aspects of it, he is
communing with the body of Christ. Even learning to correctly do
engineering work or learning to fix a door lock could be examples of
fellowshiping with the body of Christ. Learning practical ways to be
a better husband or father are other examples of this. Living for
righteousness (communing with His body) can encompass volumes and
libraries of books of knowledge about how to do things right.
Now, as the Christian is
doing Godís will, he is constantly concerned about issues relating
to success or provision, failure and lack. People and Christians
have dreams, desires and needs. These all pertain to life. When the
believer is applying the blood by faith to some area of lack or need
or danger or death, and when this believer is believing some promise
for provision or success or protection, he is communing with the
blood of Christ.
The blood has to do with
issues of life and death. To see oneís work bear fruit is life to
him. To receive provision to do his work is life to the believer.
When the believer gets a word of wisdom to solve some problem, he is
receiving life from the Spirit of Life (Romans 8: 2, 10-11). All of
the gifts of the Spirit meet desperate needs and are therefore
life-giving. Also, thousands of the promises of God, which were
written by the Spirit, are "need-meeting" promises that impart life
into the believerís situation. The blood (cup) represents all of
these life giving gifts and promises. This is the resurrection
message of the cup (blood). When the believer is experiencing any of
these gifts or promises, he is communing with the blood of Christ.
The message of the cross
that the blood means is deliverance from death. The devil has a
ministry. His is a ministry of death. The Holy Spirit has a ministry
of life (Romans 8:2, 10-11).
14Inasmuch then as the children have partaken of flesh and
blood, He Himself likewise shared in the same, that through death He
might destroy him who had the power of death, that is, the devil,
15and release those who through fear of death were all their
lifetime subject to bondage.
10The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to
destroy. I have come that they may have life, and that they may have
it more abundantly. John 10:10
When the believer
applies the blood by faith to some form of death, he cancels the
ministry of the devil. Thus, the believer by faith in the blood
fights against the devil and contends for life. This also is
communing with the blood of Jesus (cup). As can be seen in the
previous several paragraphs, the cup and the bread each have a
unique message of the cross and each has a unique message of the
The messages of the body
and the blood relate to each other in very important ways. For
example, notice that we eat the bread first and then drink the cup.
With God we always start by doing the right thing first, then Godís
provision of life and support is provided.
17So He said to him, "Why do you call Me good?
No one is good but One, that is, God. But if you want to enter into
life, keep the commandments." Matthew 19:17
2And all these blessings shall come upon you and overtake you,
because you obey the voice of the LORD your God:
19As righteousness leads to life,
So he who pursues evil pursues it to his own death. Proverbs
33But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and
all these things shall be added to you. Matthew 6:33
2And all these blessings shall come upon you and overtake you,
because you obey the voice of the LORD your God: Deuteronomy
Iím reminded of the old
saying, "What God initiates, God provides for." This represents a
huge issue in most peopleís lives. If we do what God wants us to
(bread), we might lose our jobs, family, friends or life. We need to
see God as our source to meet these needs (cup).
This basic pattern is
huge in the Old and New Testament, also. The Law and the Prophets so
often mentioned by Jesus are summarized here. The Law is how we
should live, i.e., the bread. The Prophets spent most of their time
warning the Israelites (foretelling) about the consequences for
their obedience and disobedience which were blessings and cursing,
i.e., the cup.
We can see that all of
the teachings of Jesus regarding the Christian lifestyle are seen
and summarized in the two elements of the Lordís Supper. All of His
teachings about how we should live and the condition of our hearts
are summarized by the bread. The beatitudes proclaim the blessedness
(cup) of people with certain character or heart traits (bread).
The teachings of the
apostles regarding the Christian lifestyle, as seen in the epistles,
are summarized in the elements of the Lordís Supper. In the book of
Romans, for example, the justification by faith message seen in
chapters 3-5and 8, is represented by the cup. The sanctification
message seen in chapters 6-8, is represented by the bread. Practical
instructions for Christian living seen in chapters 12-14, are
represented by the bread. In fact, I believe that if the apostle
Paul had it to do over again, with one of his letters he would have
written all or most of the truths seen in the book of Romans (and
the other epistles) in the context of the two elements of the Lordís
Even Heaven and Hell are
seen or implied by the elements of the Lordís Supper. In Heaven we
will experience eternal life. Every need will be met continually.
There will be no suffering, tears or curse. The cup represents
eternal life. Also, in Heaven there will be no sin. Heaven will be
populated by righteous people made perfect. The bread represents
righteousness. On the other hand, sin and eternal death will be in
Hell. Regarding death, people will have no need met ever. In hell
the desires of the wicked will be thrust aside continually, forever.
They rejected God as their source of life (cup), and they got what
they wanted; no God, no life. The cup represents deliverance from
death while the bread represents deliverance from sin. On earth we
contend by faith for greater and greater measures of righteousness
and life. We contend for deliverance from sin and death. Heaven and
Hell are their ultimate and pure forms. The Lordís Supper helps us
contend for these great benefits.
The Lordís Supper sheds
light on what it means to be saved. When I first was saved, there
was much talk about people who were "saved, but not following the
Lord." It got to the point where I began to realize just how many
"saved, but not following the Lord" Christians we have in our
Western churches. Now, certainly all of us have been carnal at
times. But, a lifetime and lifestyle of continuous carnality is
The elements of the
Lordís Supper expose a lax and partial gospel. The bread declares
that we were delivered or saved into good works. The bread also
declares that we were saved out of our sin. Being saved out of hell
and into heaven as the cup proclaims is only half of the gospel.
(Now, repentance is required to receive the benefits of both the cup
and the bread.) Maybe, the "saved, but not interested in following
the Lord" Christians should only drink the cup.
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