The Significance of the Lord’s Supper
1 Corinthians 11:17-34
With Good Friday approaching, we confront the cross and all that it represents. It doesn’t matter if you are in church or not, we all have to confront the cross, where we stand, and how we will respond to what Christ has done for us.
Those secular reporters who wonder why Tim Tebow always gives praise to His Lord and Savior Jesus Christ will have to stand before the cross regardless of their opinion about whether people need to be free to express their faith openly.
There is no greater observance to help us realize where we stand before the cross than the supper of our Lord. While it is referred to in 1 Cor. 10:16 of the communion of the body of our Lord, it is also called the Lord’s Table and we’re coming to eat the Lord’s Supper. It is the Lord’s Supper because of the pictorial reminder of the payment for sin Jesus gave on the cross.
Yet, there was problem at Corinth. The abuse at the Lord’s Table was an embarrassment to the church and the most drastic error judging from God’s response to it in light of where we are in the calendar; it is a wonderful time that this supper of our Lord becomes a teachable moment for such a time as this:
Monday Exposition Idea:
The Fourth Love
(1 John 2:3-11; 3:10-23; 4:7-21; and 5:1-5)
By Franklin L. Kirksey, Pastor, First Baptist Church of Spanish Fort, Alabama, and author of Sound Biblical Preaching: Giving the Bible a Voice.
These expositions by Dr. Kirksey are offered to suggest sermon or Bible study ideas for pastors and other church leaders, both from the exposition and from the illustrative material, or simply for personal devotion.
Dr. Alan Redpath (1907-1989) shares, “A colleague of mine in the ministry had a hectic phone call from a young lady who said to him, ‘Pastor, what shall I do? There is a man who loves me so much he says that if I don’t marry him he will shoot himself. What shall I do?’ ‘Nothing,’ my friend replied.” Dr. Redpath concludes, “Such a threat is not love; it is pure selfishness, desire, lust, whatever ugly word you might call it.”
Dr. Clive Staples Lewis (1898-1963) wrote a book in 1960 titled The Four Loves. Lewis summarizes four kinds of human love--affection, friendship, erotic love, and the love of God.
Dr. David Jeremiah also explains about the four loves in his book titled The Power of Encouragement,
In the Greek language of the New Testament and the first-century world, there were four different words that were used to describe four different kinds of love.
Stergo (natural affection) -- This kind is the intimate love we have for those in our families. “I love you because you are my sister.”
Eros (self-serving passion) – The word eros is not used in the Bible, but the concept is taught in books such as Song of Solomon. We get our word erotic from this Greek word. It’s love for the sole purpose of sexual satisfaction. “I love you because you give me pleasure. If you stop giving me pleasure. I stop loving you.”
Phileo (friendship) – This is psychological, social love. It is often translated by the word friend in the Bible. (See John 15:13-14) It speaks of the enjoyment we gain from another’s company. ‘I like you because you are my friend and because of some of your qualities. This is a 50/50 relationship you understand. If you don’t give in return, or if there is much conflict, our relationship will end.’
Agape (giving of one’s self) – This is totally selfless love, a love which comes from and is rooted in God. Agape is the power that moves us to respond to someone’s needs with no expectation of reward. The fundamental attribute of agape is sacrifice. So its not 50/50, it’s 100/0. “I’m going to give 100 percent even if I never receive anything in return. I will even sacrifice myself for you. I just want what’s best for you!”
We find the fourth love, agape, in these verses in 1 John 2:5, 15; 3:1, 16, 17; 4:7, 8, 9, 10, 11,12,16,17, 18; 5:3. We will explore four passages in 1 John related to the fourth love.
by the Contributing Editors of SBC Today
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