Sunday, December 6, 2015

Sunday Communion: Remembering Martyrs

Why Sunday?

Acts 2.42 They committed themselves to the teaching of the Apostles and to the fellowship of the believers, “breaking bread” and praying together.

20.7 “On the first day of the week…we gathered together to break bread…”

Didache [Teaching] 14.1: "And on the Lord's day come together and break bread and give thanks, having first confessed your transgressions, that your sacrifice may be pure."

The service became primarily a remembrance of martyrs & the soon-to-come KOG, i.e., 2nd coming.

NT evidence: Mat 20
21 Jesus said to her, “What is it you are asking me for?” She said, “Please appoint my sons to sit beside you in your future Kingdom, one on your right and the other on your left.”
22 Jesus said to them, “You do not know what you are asking. Are you able to drink the cup I am about to drink?” They replied, “Yes, we can certainly do that.”
23 Jesus replied, “You will indeed drink from my cup, but the privilege of sitting on my right or on my left in the coming Kingdom is not mine to give [only the Father’s].”

Early Christian practice from the Roman catacombs, early 2nd century known as the Fractio Panis, "breaking of bread", aka:
·       "The Lord's Supper" (coena dominica),
·       “The "Sacrifice" (prosphora, oblatio),
·       The "Liturgy" (Acts 13:2, leitourgountes);
·       "The gathering together" (synaxis, congregatio),
·       "The Mysteries",
·       "The Sacrament of the Altar",
·       “The Agape Meal/Feast”.

The Point: Communion inextricably connected with Martyrdom [denoting a purely pacifist/non-violent movement] and the Christian Hope, soon-to-come 2nd coming/KOG.

The Service: Warnings
1.       Idolatry
1Cor 10:14: So my dear friends, stay away from idol worship.
15 I am talking to intelligent people, so you decide whether I am telling the truth.
16 When we give thanks for the cup we drink in the Lord’s Supper, do we not share in the blood of Messiah? When we break the communion bread, do we not share in the body of Messiah?

2.       Church split/factions
1Cor 11:17 Now in giving you the instructions which follow I cannot commend you, because when you meet together you cause more harm than good!
18 First of all, I hear that when you have church meetings you are split into different factions, and I believe there is truth in this.
19 Of course such factions among you are inevitable so that those who are genuinely approved can show themselves by the evidence.

The bread:
23 For I received from the lord the tradition I passed on to you: the lord Jesus, on the night he was betrayed, took some bread.

24 After giving thanks, he broke the bread into pieces and said, “This bread represents my body, which is given for you. Remember me when you do this.”

The cup:
25 In the same way he took the cup, after supper, and said, “This cup is the New Covenant ratified in my blood. Remember me as often as you drink it.”

Closing Prayer:
26 For as often you eat this bread and drink from this cup you are announcing the lord’s death, until he returns.” Maranatha!

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