Christ Evangelical Lutheran Church - Marshfield, WI

Lent 2021 - Holy Communion (Anderson)

April 1 – Pastor Anderson

There is so much to talk about with this Sacrament of the Lord’s body and blood that I am afraid one little daily devotion is not sufficient. This miracle deserves our constant amazement and attention. The Lord Jesus Christ has joined His body and blood to simple bread and wine by the power of His Word. Even more so, this bread and wine grant us forgiveness, life, and eternal salvation. What an amazing Sacrament.

Some church bodies do not believe the words of Jesus when He says, “Take and eat, this is My body” or “Take and drink, this is My blood.” Our Protestant friends (like Baptists and Presbyterians) believe that the bread and wine are mere symbols of Jesus’s body and blood. However, we Lutherans take Jesus at His Word. What you receive is both bread and body, wine and blood, for the body and blood are in, with, and under the bread and the wine.

As a result of this division of faith, the Lutheran Church―Missouri Synod practices closed communion. That may sound restrictive, but it is actually done for the benefit of all people. Saint Paul tells us in 1 Corinthians that “anyone who eats and drinks without discerning the body eats and drinks judgment on himself” (1 Corinthians 11:29). It matters what you and the rest of the people around you believe when you commune. This is not just about you and Jesus…it’s about you and the congregation around you. If you commune at an altar, you are confessing that you believe everything that church teaches. As a result, we protect the souls of visitors by not allowing them to commune at our altar, unless they are members of an LCMS congregation. We’re not doing this to be mean or restrictive. We’re doing this to protect the health of their souls, so that they do not eat and drink judgment upon themselves.

The Lord’s Supper is one of the greatest gifts that our Lord and Savior Jesus gives to us. Some members have asked me, “Pastor, how often should I take the Lord’s Supper?” My answer has always been the same: “How often do you sin? That often.” The body and blood of Jesus are like an antidote to the poison of our sin. We need to receive it as often as we can for our forgiveness. Be sure that you are receiving the Lord’s gifts as often as they are given.

It is a great mystery that Jesus joins His own body and blood to simple bread and wine. It is an even greater mystery that this act can forgive sins, but we take Him at His Word. Forgiveness is physical and concrete. It goes into your mouth, passes down your esophagus, and winds up in your stomach. The forgiveness of Jesus literally becomes a part of you and strengthens you in body and soul unto life everlasting. Your sins are forgiven. Therefore, depart in peace. Amen.

April 2 - Good Friday
Join us for Divine Service as we remember the Crucifixion
Read Mark 14

April 3
Read Mark 15

April 4 – Easter
Join us for Divine Service as we celebrate the Resurrection! Read Mark 16