The Lord’s Supper is one of the two sacraments that Jesus gave to His church for its growth in grace. It is called a perpetual remembrance – meaning it is regular and recurring. At CPC, our usual practice is to observe the Lord’s Supper twice a month as the family of God.
We celebrate the Lord’s Supper at 6PM on the first Sunday of each month and during the morning worship service on the third Sunday of every month.
What is the Lord’s Supper
In the Lord’s Supper, Christ has given His church an intimate expression of His self-sacrificing love. By this observance, we remember His sacrifice until He comes again to take us to be with Him. The physical elements of bread and the cup represent the broken body and the shed blood of the Savior and are received by true believers as signs and seals of all the benefits of His sacrifice upon the cross. They signify and seal the forgiveness of our sins and our nourishment and growth in Christ. They are a bond and pledge of communion of believers with Him and with each other as members of His mystical body. As signs and seals of the covenant of grace, they declare that God is faithful and true – He will fulfill the promises of the covenant.
Partaking of the elements also summons us as believers to all our duties as the children of God – out of gratitude for so great a salvation.
Who is the Lord’s Supper for?
This table is for all who have been baptized and have made a public profession of their faith in Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior. That is to say that they are members in good standing of a gospel preaching/practicing church. The Lord’s Supper is for all who have graciously been made aware of their need for the forgiveness of God for their sin and their sinfulness. Those who partake of this supper are confessing that their sin is justly deserving of the wrath of God. We believe that in order to be rescued from that wrath, our only hope is to trust in and rely upon the finished work of Christ – His perfect obedience to the law of God – credited to the believer by faith – and His substitutionary death to satisfy the justice of God.
While they are welcome to attend the Lord’s Supper service, our covenant children don’t partake of the elements until such time as they are able to articulate before the congregation their own testimony of God’s grace within. It is fitting that when a young person is able to share clearly with others in his own words what he believes at that time also they should share in the meal that the Lord gave to His community of believers.
The Warning from Scripture
Christians confess their sinfulness in God’s sight, believe that Jesus Christ died on the cross to atone for their sin, and trust Him alone for growth in grace. If that is not your confession, the Scriptures solemnly warn you not to approach the Lord’s table lest you partake in an unworthy manner, not discerning the Lord’s body, and so eat and drink condemnation unto yourself.
However, this warning is not designed to keep the humble and contrite from the table of the Lord, as if somehow the Lord’s Supper were for those who might claim to be free from sin. Remember, the church consists of sinners who are called to believe the gospel and live by it. Those who are welcome to this table come as guilty and polluted sinners – without hope of eternal life apart from the grace of God in Christ. By partaking of these elements, we confess our dependence upon the perfect sacrifice of Christ alone for pardon and cleansing.
So we gather as the household of faith to urge each other, in accordance with the admonition of the apostle Paul (1 Corinthians 11:23-29), to examine our minds and hearts to determine whether such discernment is ours, with the primary goal ever before us – that we may partake of the Lord’s Supper to the glory of God and our growth in the grace of Christ.