Today, we observe the Lord’s Supper. One of the major themes of the Lord’s Supper is remembering. Remembering the past impacts the present. When you forget something significant you begin living for the insignificant. This is why Jesus wants us to think about Him and to remember Him. When we remember His love for us it impacts our love for Him and ultimately our love for others. Remembering the past impacts the present.
Here is what we are going to do today. We are going to look at two important statements: one by Jesus and one by the thief on the cross. They both said remember me. Let’s start with Jesus.
Jesus: Remember Me
In Luke 22:17-19 we are told,
Then [Jesus] took a cup of wine and gave thanks to God for it. Then he said, “Take this and share it among yourselves. For I will not drink wine again until the Kingdom of God has come.” He took some bread and gave thanks to God for it. Then he broke it in pieces and gave it to the disciples, saying, “This is my body, which is given for you. Do this in remembrance of me” (NLT).
The word remembrance is full of meaning, but one aspect means to recall. The Lord wants us to remember and think about some things when we observe the Lord’s Supper.
Remember who Jesus is
First, we are to remember who Jesus is. We are told in verse 19 that Jesus took some bread and gave thanks to God for it. Then he broke it in pieces and gave it to the disciples…. This bread was unleavened bread. Unleavened bread symbolized something or someone who had not been contaminated with sin. This bread is meant to draw your mind back to the unleavened or sinless life of Jesus Christ. In 1 John 3:5 we are told that “Jesus came to take away our sins, and there is no sin in him” (NLT). When you hold that bread remember that Jesus is the sinless Son of God who came to take away your sin. That bread is an object lesson. It is a memorial. It is to remind you of who He is. Jesus is the sinless Son of God! He is divine perfection! He is absolute holiness! He is without selfishness! This is one reason why He is worthy to follow and worthy to worship. Jesus said, “Do this in remembrance of me.” Don’t forget how significant Jesus is. When you remember the significant you begin living for the significant.
Remember what Jesus has done
We not only remember who Jesus is, but what Jesus has done. Mark tells us in verse 17 that Jesus took a cup of wine and gave thanks to God for it. Then he said, “Take this and share it among yourselves.” The wine represents several things, but one is the blood of Christ that was shed for our sins. Ephesians 1:7 says this about our Heavenly Father, “He is so rich in kindness and grace that he purchased our freedom with the blood of his Son and forgave our sins” (NLT). What has Jesus done? He has purchased our freedom from sin. He has purchased our freedom from the kingdom of darkness. That’s what He has done. The cup and juice are object lessons of the freedom Jesus purchased with His blood.
Jesus said, “Do this in remembrance of me.” Recall the truth that Jesus bought your freedom from sin. He took your punishment, so you could be free. He died on the cross so you could live for eternity in heaven. He gave up His life so you could have life. This is no small thing. This is something extremely significant. Don’t forget the significant or you will start living for the insignificant.
Remember what Jesus will do
We remember who Jesus is. We remember what Jesus has done and we remember what Jesus will do. Mark tells us in verse 18 that Jesus said, For I will not drink wine again until the Kingdom of God has come. Jesus is saying the next time you see me drinking wine it will be in celebration of my return. When we take the Lord’s Supper we not only remember who He is and what He has done, but we remember what is to come. The Lord’s Supper is a spiritual appetizer for a feast that is coming for all believers.
The Bible teaches that Jesus Christ will return. Listen to 1 Thessalonians 4:16 which says, “For the Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the archangel’s voice, and with the trumpet of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first. Then we who are still alive will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air; and so we will always be with the Lord” (vs. 16-17, HCSB).
The Lord’s Supper is not just about the death of Christ, but about the reign of Christ. Jesus died on the cross so that He could resurrect from the grave. He resurrected from the grave so that He could ascend to the Father. He ascended to the Father so that He could come back again for His people. “Do this in remembrance of me.” The Lord’s return is significant! If you forget the significant, you will live for the insignificant.
Thief: Remember Me
In Luke 22, Jesus said remember; but when you get to Luke 23 you hear a thief on the cross asking Jesus to remember him.
Take a look at Luke 23:39-43,
One of the criminals hanging beside him scoffed, “So you’re the Messiah, are you? Prove it by saving yourself—and us, too, while you’re at it!” 40 But the other criminal protested, “Don’t you fear God even when you have been sentenced to die? 41 We deserve to die for our crimes, but this man hasn’t done anything wrong.” 42 Then he said, “Jesus, remember me when you come into your Kingdom.” 43 And Jesus replied, “I assure you, today you will be with me in paradise.” (NLT)
If there was ever a deathbed conversion in the Bible, this is it. The thief says, “Jesus, remember me when you come into your Kingdom.” This is one of the most amazing statements of faith in the Bible because Jesus never looked less like a king than when He hung on that cross. His crown was made of thorns. His scepter was a bloody spike pierced into His hands. His court was a mob of mockers. Yet that dying thief recognized Jesus as a King of a different kind and of a different world. That thief cried out to Jesus, “Jesus, remember me when you come into your kingdom.”
I believe at that moment when that thief said that to Jesus he was saved. The angels rejoiced in heaven. Romans 10:13 says, “Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.” I love this. This thief had nothing to bring to Jesus. He could not bring church attendance. He could not bring his giving record. He could not bring his baptism. Good works could not save him because he didn’t have any. All he had was two things: he had a Savior’s grace and a sinner’s faith. The theif is a great example of Ephesians 2:8-9, “… for it is by grace you have been saved through faith….” What is true for thief is also true for you and me. You are saved by grace through faith in Christ.
I want to ask a question. How does this thief know he is saved? How does this thief know that He is going to go to paradise when he dies? How does he know that he is going to go to heaven? Because of what Jesus told him. It was the Word of Jesus that gave him the assurance. He trusted what Jesus said.
If you feel forgotten by Jesus let me remind you that He remembers you, because you are precious to Him. He remembers you, because He loves you. He remembers you, because He was born for you. He remembers you, because He lived for you. He remembers you, because He died for you. He remembers you, because He resurrected from the grave for you. He remembers you, because He is coming back for you.
There is no coincidence in the order of these two statements. In Luke 22 Jesus says remember me, then in Luke 23 the thief on the cross says “remember me” to Jesus. When we remember Jesus, He remembers us. When we place our faith in Him, He saves us. When we call out to Him, He reaches out to us.
Conclusion / Lord’s Supper
The Lord’s Supper is not just about the death of Christ, but about the reign of Christ. Jesus died on the cross so that He could resurrect from the grave. He resurrected from the grave so that He could ascend to the Father. He ascended to the Father so that He could come back again for His people. “Do this in remembrance of me.”
At this time I would like the band to join me.
This morning the Lord’s Supper will be up to you. I want to encourage you to take a moment and pause and talk to God. Praise Him, thank Him, confess to Him, ask Him to help you repent of your sin and ask Him what He wants to do in your life. Talk to Him.
When the band begins to play in a moment and when you are ready, you can come up to the front to one of the tables. The bread represents His body which He sacrificed for you and the juice represents His blood he shed for you. You can receive the Lord’s Supper up here or you can take it back to your seat. It’s up to you. You can eat or drink when you are ready.
I encourage you to be in a prayerful attitude as you receive the Lord’s Supper. We are not in a hurry. Take some time and slow down. Fix your heart and mind on God this morning.
When you are done you can place the cups in the trash cans on the way out.
When the band begins to play you can begin to come and when we are done I will come back and close out our services. Band you can begin to play.