The Power and Mystery of the Faith…..
Devotional THought of the Day:
“And because he offers and promises forgiveness of sins, it cannot be received except by faith. This faith he himself demands in the Word when he says, “Given for you” and “poured out for you,” as if he said, “This is why I give it and bid you eat and drink, that you may take it as your own and enjoy it.”
35 Whoever lets these words be addressed to him and believes that they are true has what the words declare. But he who does not believe has nothing, for he lets this gracious blessing be offered to him in vain and refuses to enjoy it. The treasure is opened and placed at everyone’s door, yes, upon everyone’s table, but it is also your responsibility to take it and confidently believe that it is just as the words tell you.
36 This, now, is the preparation required of a Christian for receiving this sacrament worthily. Since this treasure is fully offered in the words, it can be grasped and appropriated only by the heart. Such a gift and eternal treasure cannot be seized with the hand.
37 Fasting and prayer and the like may have their place as an external preparation and children’s exercise so that one’s body may behave properly and reverently toward the body and blood of Christ. But what is given in and with the sacrament cannot be grasped and appropriated by the body. This is done by the faith of the heart which discerns and desires this treasure.”
Yesterday, two church services, very similar, yet in some ways…different.
I love watching people commune – to see them lifted up as the approach and kneel, or stand and receive the Body and Blood of Christ.
They aren’t theologians, and though those serving can ellucidate how the communication of magesterial attributes of Christ are seen in the Eucharist, in reality, it matters little to them. They know what they’ve heard – given for you, and shed for the forgiveness of sins – and that is enough. For this Body and Blood is not primarily to be discoursed about, its primary function is not theological – it theophilian – it helps us love and adore the God who gives Himself to us, in so many ways, and yes – through a simple piece of bread, and a simple sip of wine.
It is indeed a treasure..
A treasure of the heart – a treasure, not only of our faith in God, but also in His faithfulness towars us….
There is so much to say… the words could go on forever…
But I will leave you with Paul’s words this morning…
What you must solemnly realize is that every time you eat this bread and every time you drink this cup, you reenact in your words and actions the death of the Master. You will be drawn back to this meal again and again until the Master returns. (MSG)
Go…often… and know the Lord is with you!
(1) Tappert, T. G. (Ed.). (1959). The Book of Concord the confessions of the Evangelical Lutheran Church. (pp. 450–451). Philadelphia: Mühlenberg Press.
- The Eucharist and Its Effective Work on our Hearts: (justifiedandsinner.com)