A Meal with Many Names

After taking the cup, he gave thanks. . . And he took bread, [and] gave thanks. . . — Luke 22:17-19

Luke 22:17-19

The simple but sacred meal that we call the Lord’s Supper has several different names.

Many people simply call this meal the Lord’s Supper (1 Corinthians 11:20). We do this because Jesus, our Lord, our God and King, gave us this meal. Many followers of Christ also call this meal “communion” because in this celebration they commune with the Lord and with each other, united in love, faith, and hope in Christ and all of God’s promises.

Many Christians also call this meal “the Eucharist,” which basically means “thanksgiving.” When Jesus celebrated this meal with his disciples, he gave thanks to God for it. And ever since then, the church has given thanks to God for providing this meal.

Early Christians had another name for this meal too, calling it the “love feast” or “agape feast” (see Jude 12). In some cases this may have included a larger fellowship meal along with the celebration of the Lord’s Supper. Why did they call it this? Because it showed that Jesus loved his followers so much that he was willing to die to defeat sin and death for them.

At this meal we have the oppor­tunity to say that we love God too. And as we pass the food and drink to each other, we acknowledge that we love (or are trying to love) the people in our church family too.

Lord, we thank you for this meal by which you not only remind us of your love but also call us to experience your love and share it with others. We love you too. Amen.

Bible References

17 And he took the cup, and gave thanks, and said, Take this, and divide it among yourselves:

18 For I say unto you, I will not drink of the fruit of the vine, until the kingdom of God shall come.

19 And he took bread, and gave thanks, and brake it, and gave unto them, saying, This is my body which is given for you: this do in remembrance of me.

20 When ye come together therefore into one place, this is not to eat the Lord’s supper.

12 These are spots in your feasts of charity, when they feast with you, feeding themselves without fear: clouds they are without water, carried about of winds; trees whose fruit withereth, without fruit, twice dead, plucked up by the roots;

Romans 13

13 Let every soul be subject unto the higher powers. For there is no power but of God: the powers that be are ordained of God.

Whosoever therefore resisteth the power, resisteth the ordinance of God: and they that resist shall receive to themselves damnation.

For rulers are not a terror to good works, but to the evil. Wilt thou then not be afraid of the power? do that which is good, and thou shalt have praise of the same:

For he is the minister of God to thee for good. But if thou do that which is evil, be afraid; for he beareth not the sword in vain: for he is the minister of God, a revenger to execute wrath upon him that doeth evil.

Wherefore ye must needs be subject, not only for wrath, but also for conscience sake.

For for this cause pay ye tribute also: for they are God’s ministers, attending continually upon this very thing.

Render therefore to all their dues: tribute to whom tribute is due; custom to whom custom; fear to whom fear; honour to whom honour.

Owe no man any thing, but to love one another: for he that loveth another hath fulfilled the law.

For this, Thou shalt not commit adultery, Thou shalt not kill, Thou shalt not steal, Thou shalt not bear false witness, Thou shalt not covet; and if there be any other commandment, it is briefly comprehended in this saying, namely, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself.

10 Love worketh no ill to his neighbour: therefore love is the fulfilling of the law.

11 And that, knowing the time, that now it is high time to awake out of sleep: for now is our salvation nearer than when we believed.

12 The night is far spent, the day is at hand: let us therefore cast off the works of darkness, and let us put on the armour of light.

13 Let us walk honestly, as in the day; not in rioting and drunkenness, not in chambering and wantonness, not in strife and envying.

14 But put ye on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make not provision for the flesh, to fulfil the lusts thereof.

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