In Remembrance

“For I received from the Lord that which I also delivered to you, that the Lord Jesus in the night in which He was betrayed took bread; and when He had given thanks, He broke it and said, “This is My body, which is for you; do this in remembrance of Me.” In the same way He took the cup also after supper, saying, “This cup is the new covenant in My blood; do this, as often as you drink it, in remembrance of Me.” For as often as you eat this bread and drink the cup, you proclaim the Lord’s death until He comes.” (1 Corinthians 11:23–26)

Memorials have great value. They cause us to look backwards toward a significant event in order to revisit that event and remember. After leaving Mozambique, Africa this past year our travels took us through New York for a lengthy layover. I decided that while I was there I would travel to the 9-11 Memorial. Above ground I saw two pools of cascading waterfalls that seemed to disappear underground. Around the pools were etched the names of all those who lost their lives in this terrorist attack that rocked our nation. I then traveled underground to visit Ground Zero. I found an elaborate display of mangled fire, police and medical apparatuses. In addition, there were many items of clothing and personal effects of the victims of the all of the attacks, not just Ground Zero in New York but also the Pentagon and flight 93 in Pennsylvania. The most significant display for me was the pillar that reminded everyone of the lives lost that day.

Over 2000 years ago another memorial was established. It was the memorial of Communion. Most memorials are created after a significant incident and yet Jesus established His memorial before His death. Many people view the cross as a reminder of Jesus’ sacrifice but the real memorial is what we today call “The Lord’s Supper” or “Communion.” Jesus Himself declared that true remembrance takes place when believers receive the bread and drink from the cup in order to remember all that Jesus has done to give them life. During that time they are proclaiming the salvation and sacrifice that comes from of the Lord’s death until Jesus returns. The bread represents Jesus’ body, The Bread of Life (John 6:51) that came down out of heaven. The cup reminds us of the New Covenant ratified by Jesus’ blood and the washing away of our sins.

The memorial of communion is different than most memorials because Jesus wants us to also look forward to a great future. Notice that this memorial also reminds us of the blessed hope of the return of Jesus in order to take us to Heaven so that “when we see Him we will be like Him” (1 John 3:2). As Christ Followers we look back in order to look forward and celebrate life.

Pastor Cary Wacker

Leave a Reply