by Keith Noll.
The Apostle Paul records simply what the Lord’s Supper means. "The Lord Jesus the same night in which He was betrayed took bread: and when He had given thanks, He brake it, and said, Take, eat: this is My body, which is broken for you: this do in remembrance of Me. After the same manner also He took the cup, when He had supped, saying, This cup is the new testament in My blood: this do ye, as oft as ye drink it, in remembrance of Me. For as often as ye eat this bread, and drink this cup, ye do show the Lord's death till He come." 1 Corinthians 11:23-26.
For me personally, when I partake of the bread and the line is read, “Take, eat: this is My body, which is broken for you…” I think about Jesus and the suffering He went through; Psalm 22 comes to my mind to ponder and meditate on. Here is what is impressed upon my mind from verses 6-8:
But I am a worm, and no man;
A reproach of men, and despised by the people.
All those who see Me ridicule Me;
They shoot out the lip, they shake the head, saying,
“He trusted in the Lord, let Him rescue Him;
Let Him deliver Him, since He delights in Him!”
How emotionally painful this must have been to Him. But amazingly He still loved them.
Then I read verses 12 & 13, “Many bulls have surrounded Me; Strong bulls of Bashan have encircled Me. They gape at Me with their mouths, Like a raging and roaring lion.
Who are these Strong Bulls of Bashan that have encircled Jesus? What meaning is intended here? The plain of Bashan was famous for its rich pasture which was used for raising well-fed cattle (Jer. 50:19, Micah 7:14, Nah 1:4). The cattle raised on Bashan were proverbial for their strength, size, and self-contentment (Deut. 32:14, Ps. 22:12, Eze. 39:18, Amos 4:1). Yet with all their wealth they misused others. Notice what it says in Amos 4:1, “Hear this word, you Cows of Bashan, who are on the mountain of Samaria, who oppress the poor, who crush the needy, who say to your husbands, ‘Bring, that we may drink!’” It was an expression of powerful oppressors.
Today, Bashan is known as the Golan Heights. The Wild Bulls of Bashan banded together to attack their victim. They surrounded their prey, and then ferociously pounced on the helpless victim. Jesus' enemies—political authorities and religious leaders, like the Bulls of Bashan— banded together and viciously attacked Jesus.
The following verses from v.14-18 vividly describe Christ’s experience: “I am poured out like water, And all My bones are out of joint; My heart is like wax; It has melted within Me. My strength is dried up like a potsherd, And My tongue clings to My jaws; You have brought Me to the dust of death.
For dogs have surrounded Me; The congregation of the wicked has enclosed Me.
They pierced My hands and My feet; I can count all My bones. They look and stare at Me.
They divide My garments among them, And for My clothing they cast lots.”
All this Christ suffered for you and me so that we would not have to suffer the second death for our sins. The prophet Isaiah describes it this way in Is. 53:3-5, “He is despised and rejected by men, A Man of sorrows and acquainted with grief. And we hid, as it were, our faces from Him;
He was despised, and we did not esteem Him.
Surely, He has borne our griefs and carried our sorrows; Yet we esteemed Him stricken, Smitten by God, and afflicted. But He was wounded for our transgressions, He was bruised for our iniquities; The chastisement for our peace was upon Him, And by His stripes we are healed."
You may not be a drug dealer, a mass murderer, nor a thief or an adulterer, but the Bible makes it plain we have all sinned and fallen short of the glory of God. We all deserve the second death. Praise God for his atonement. Praise God for His great love. God is Amazing. We must never forget that. We must always remember what God has done for us. That’s why we perform the Communion service. That’s why we commemorate the Lord’s supper.
The Good News is that if we accept Jesus as our Savior and Lord, we will eat the bread and drink the cup when Jesus takes us back to heaven. Jesus said in Matthew 26:29, “But I say to you, I will not drink of this fruit of the vine from now on until that day when I drink it new with you in My Father’s kingdom.” My friends, I am looking forward to that glorious day! I pray that each one of you will be there too.