Sunday, June 15, 2014

This meal commemorates the death of Jesus Christ--By Doug Wilson

This meal commemorates the death of Jesus Christ. This bread represents His body, and this wine represents His blood. This Table is all about the crucifixion. The cross is what we are talking about. The affliction He went through on our behalf is the message.
But we have to presuppose the resurrection in order to be able to do this. If Jesus had not come back from the dead, then His death would have been just one more obscure execution, wherein a prophet was swallowed up by the system—devoured by the cruel machinery of death. We have the privilege of proclaiming the Lord’s death two thousand years later because we are proclaiming the death of one who rose.
This dark world was utterly transformed by the resurrection. In the very middle of history—necessarily transforming the very meaning of history—Jesus came out of the tomb. This world is now a world in which the first man rose from the dead.
What this does is liberate us, so that we can proclaim the Lord’s death as full of gospel meaning, instead of forgetting it as necessarily meaningless. Jesus was raised for our justification (Rom. 4:25), which means, in part, that He was raised so that we could declare that He died.
Further, this declaration helps keep the sap of grace flowing out to our leaves. Whenever affliction blows someone off the tree, it is a withered leaf that blows off. Afflictions test your graces. You should be strengthened in those graces by this. This Table is a Table of affliction, and it is simultaneously a Table of thanksgiving. Affliction because He died, thanksgiving because He rose. We imitate Him, then, in our afflictions. We see them all against the backdrop of resurrection.
So come, and welcome, to Jesus Christ.