What is Communion?
Through the ordinance of communion, we as believers remember and celebrate the ministry of Jesus Christ in our lives. We celebrate together everything we are and everything we have because of what Jesus Christ did, does, and will do for us. Jesus is the focus.
The washing of feet is a celebration of the present ministry of Christ in our lives as He daily cleanses us from our sins. The theological word for this is sanctification—Christ setting us apart by transforming us into his image.
· John 13:1-17
· 1 John 1:9
As we wash the feet of another believer…
· we remember that we have a Savior who is able and willing to wash us and cleanse us from sin every day.
· we remember that just as Jesus forgives us, so we are to serve each other by forgiving each other.
· How are you seeing Jesus at work in and around you? How are you experiencing his present ministry in your life?
· How does Christ’s forgiveness serve us? How does forgiveness serve others?
The love feast is a celebration of the future ministry of Christ, when, at the Marriage Supper of the Lamb, we will be united with Jesus forever and Jesus Himself will serve us. The theological word for this is glorification—seeing and sharing the glory of Christ (1John 3:2; Romans 8:29-30)
· Revelation 19:1-9
· Luke 12:37-38
As we eat together around the table…
· we remember that Jesus is our first love and that we live now for a future with Him.
· we remember that we are to love each other as Jesus loves us. We are family.
· What do you love about Jesus?
· What are you looking forward to understanding better about Jesus?
· If the Marriage Supper of the Lamb took place today, what would you tell Jesus you were thankful for?
Bread & Cup
The bread and cup is the celebration of the past ministry of Christ. He died on the cross to pay our sin debt. By taking the bread and the cup we give thanks (Eucharist is the Greek word for “thanks”) for the price Jesus paid to redeem us. The theological truth in focus here is justification—God declares us righteous because Jesus paid the penalty for our sin through his broken body and spilled blood.
· Matthew 26:26-29; (also in Mark14 and Luke 22)
· 1 Corinthians 11:23-26
As we eat the bread and drink the juice…
· we remember that Jesus died in our place, taking our punishment for sin upon himself, so that we could be forgiven and enter into relationship with the Father.
· we remember that the life of Jesus is now in us. We are alive to God through Him. As partakers of His life, we are made one in Him.
· What does Christ’s death tell us about the Father and the Son?
· What is the power of the cross in our lives today? Why are you thankful for the cross? What difference does the cross make for you?
How to Practice Communion in Homes
o Think through where you will host a communion service: who will host and where?
o Think through how you want to order and execute the elements: who will facilitate which part of the service? How will you do the meal—carry in, order out, host fixes, etc.?
o Location and start time of communion
o Instructions as to what, if anything, participants should bring for the meal
Aspects of Communion in homes (not in a prescribed order)
· Welcome by host/hostess. Fellowship.
· Introduction of communion.
· Explanation of love feast.
· Fellowship Meal.
· Explanation of foot washing.
· Foot washing.
· Explanation of bread and cup.
· Taking part in bread and cup.
Examples of ways to make it simple.
· Meal: Every family brings a salad and some kind of bread (host provides drink). Order pizza and have everyone chip in for it. Keep it simple.
· Bread and Cup: Use the glasses from the meal as the cups. Pass around a pitcher of juice. Use a dinner roll as the bread. In other words, use what is in front of you, as Jesus did. If you want to use unleavened bread, try using a tortilla.
· Foot washing: Consider using wet wipes.
· Introduction of elements: Share the responsibility among group by having three different people introduce the three elements. Make it discussion-oriented rather than lecture-driven.
· Sharing/discussion: It’s almost Thanksgiving. Have people share what they are thankful for.
· People over program. Keep it informal, simple, relational, and natural. Be creative!