Saturday, July 03, 2010

"Father, have I done something wrong?"

(1 Corinthians 11:28-29) But let a man examine himself, and so let him eat of that bread, and drink of that cup. For he that eateth and drinketh unworthily, eateth and drinketh damnation to himself, not discerning the Lord’s body.

Some time ago, one of our church families with young children was out of town for the weekend and wound up worshipping at a church in the town where they were visiting friends. The church with whom they worshipped do not practice paedo-communion, and therefore were the small children not served the bread and wine of the Lord’s Table. The littlest saint in this family was very disturbed to see the elements pass by him and he began to cry plaintively. And after both bread and wine had passed by these dear ones who have grown wonderfully accustomed to weekly communion, one of them turned to her parents and queried pitifully, “Father, have I done something wrong?”

This little one’s question demonstrated that she understood the meaning and import of the Lord’s Table even better than the elders who had excluded her from the Table. She correctly knew herself to be a genuine member of Christ’s body with all of its attendant duties and privileges. And she also rightly understood that the only biblical ground for being excluded; in other words, ex-communionated; (i.e. excommun-icated); would be serious sin in a hardened state of impenitence. And so her question, “Father, have I done something wrong?”

This little saint’s query evidenced that she was in perfect accord with Paul’s command to rightly “discern the Lord’s body.” She was recognizing the body of Christ seated all around her, and herself as a bona-fide member in good standing of that body. And hence her legitimate distress regarding her apparent severing from the body of her Savior. And hence her eagerness to know and repent of any misdeeds in order to be restored to her people, her Lord and the glad fellowship of his Table.

This covenant meal, this feast of feasts was intended to strengthen, not sap faith; to encourage belief, not erode it. So come young and old, come male and female; come red, yellow, black and white (all precious in the Savior’s sight) come healthy and come infirm; come sound of mind and struggling; come strong and come weak, so long as you…"Come and welcome to the Table of Our Lord."

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