(a) It symbolizes the death of Christ for our sins.
<461126> 1 Corinthians 11:26 ? ?For as often as ye eat this bread and drink the cup, ye proclaim the Lord?s death till he come?; cf. <411424>Mark 14:24 ? ?This is my blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many.? The blood upon which the covenant between God and Christ, and so between God and us who are one with Christ, from eternity past was based. The Lord?s Supper reminds us of the covenant, which ensures our salvation and of the atonement upon which the covenant was based. Cf.
<581320> Hebrews 13:20 ? ?blood of an eternal covenant?
Alex. McLaren: ?The suggestion of a violent death, implied in the doubling of the symbols, by which the body is separated from that of the blood, and still further implied in the breaking of the bread, is made prominent in the words in reference to the cup. It symbolizes the blood of Jesus which is ?shed.? That shed blood is covenant blood. By it the New Covenant, of which Jeremiah had prophesied, one article of which was, ?Their sins and iniquities I will remember no more,? is sealed and ratified, not for Israel only but for an indefinite ?many,? which is really equivalent to all. Could words more plainly declare that Christ?s death was a sacrifice? Can we understand it, according to his own interpretation of it, unless we see in his words here a reference to his previous words
( <402023>Matthew 20:23) and recognize that in shedding his blood ?for many,? he ?gave his life a ransom for many?? The Lord?s Supper is the standing witness, voiced by Jesus himself, that he regarded his death as the very center of his work and that he regarded it not merely as a martyrdom, but as a sacrifice by which he put away sins forever. Those who reject that view of that death are sorely puzzled what to make of the Lord?s Supper.?
(b) It symbolizes our personal appropriation of the benefits of that death.
<461124> 1 Cor 11:24 ? ?This is my body, which is for you?; cf. <460507>1 Corinthians 5:7 ? ?Christ our Passover is sacrificed for us?; or R. V. ? ?our Passover also hath been sacrificed, even Christ.? Here it is evident not only that the showing forth of the Lord?s death is the primary meaning of the ordinance, but that showing our partaking of the benefits of that death is as dearly taught as the Israelites? deliverance was symbolized in the paschal supper.
(c) It symbolizes the method of this appropriation, through union with Christ himself.
<461016> 1 Corinthians 10:16 ? ?The cup of blessing which we bless is it not a communion of [margin: ?participation in?] the blood of Christ? The bread
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