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1 Corinthians 11 - Part C

Connect with Skip Heitzig / Skip Heitzig
The Truth Network Radio
September 2, 2022 6:00 am

1 Corinthians 11 - Part C

Connect with Skip Heitzig / Skip Heitzig

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September 2, 2022 6:00 am

It's easy to be stuck in our past, especially if we have a lot of regret. In this message, Skip shares how God can redeem your past to guide you in your present.

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Connect with Skip Heitzig
Skip Heitzig
Connect with Skip Heitzig
Skip Heitzig

I believe that our relationship with God should always be in the present tense, not just in the past tense. Too many people, too many Christians say, I remember what it was like all those old days, all those good old days. I remember the intimacy I had with Christ and how wonderful.

Well, what about now, dude? Are you walking with Him now? Is He speaking to you now?

Are you close to His heart now? If your relationship with God is only a past tense experience, needs to be brought into the present tense. This is the covenant. It is a present reality. Too often, we get fixated on the past. Well, today on Connect with Skip Heitzig, Skip shares how you can use your past to guide you in the present. But before we begin, we want to let you know about a resource that will inspire you to build even more unity with others in the church. The United States fought the devastating Civil War to overcome a deeply dividing issue. As followers of Jesus and people who represent His love, we can help one another deal with this topic today.

Here's Skip Heitzig and Tony Clark. Speak to white evangelical pastors about how in churches we can create spaces for black and brown voices to be heard in a loving atmosphere, in a concerned atmosphere. This is the church's finest moment because racism is a sin.

It's a sin in the heart. So now it's our job to begin to guide them and to have a biblical mindset and also having sympathy and empathy for those who are trying to live out this Christianity and their skin may be a little bit darker than yours. Cultivate the empathy that comes from gaining a biblical perspective on racism. Get your copy of this conversation between pastors Skip and Tony when you give $20 or more today. We'll also send you Pastor Skip's booklet, The Church and Racism.

Call 800-922-1888 or give online securely at slash offer. Now, we're in 1 Corinthians chapter 11 as Skip Heitzig gets into today's message. Verse 16 kind of concludes it, more I could say, but if anyone seems to be contentious, we have no such custom nor do the churches of God. And some people do want to be contentious.

They want to argue over this and let them argue. But Paul is saying, we don't have any such custom nor do the churches of God. It's just not a big deal. It's an issue there in Corinth. It's an issue there in certain parts of the world and the churches that Paul started around the empire.

I am convinced if Paul were writing to a modern Western culture, he wouldn't write these same kinds of issues because they're not the same kind of cultural mores or signals that were back in that day. If anyone seems to be contentious, we have no such custom nor do the churches of God. So all of that to say this, we have no rules on how you should dress when you come to church, except you should be modest. And you should never dress to draw attention to yourself. And some people, some gals will want to dress in a provocative way and they seem to be saying, it's very important to me that you look at me, check me out.

Because they dress in a provocative way so as to direct attention to themselves. So when it comes to the issue of what clothes to wear or what kind of haircut to have, understand this, the real issue is that your old nature needs a haircut. You know, circumcise the foreskin of your heart, the Bible says. That's really the issue, the inward man more than the outward.

Man looks at the outward appearance, God looks at the heart. Now in giving these instructions, I do not praise you. He did praise them earlier, but in giving these instructions, I do not praise you because he's going to change subjects.

Since you come together not for the better, but for the worse. For first of all, when you come together as a church, when you gather in your assembly, when you come together for your Bible studies and your worship services, I hear that there are divisions among you and in part, I believe it. Now we know there were divisions. He said so in chapter 1 and 2. Chloe's household had told Paul that there are divisions in that local Corinthian church, that some were grouping themselves as followers of Paul, some Apollo, some Cephas, some just independent.

I don't follow man, I follow Christ. Paul says you're all carnal. So he's bringing this back up, but he's bringing it back up in the context of not just little groups that are following the teachings of particular apostles, but rather when they gather together for their worship service, in particular the Lord's Supper. A special feast used 2,000 years ago among churches called the Agape Feast, the love feast. Now at Agape Feast, the love feast was like a potluck. People would bring their own food and the idea is you bring food and you share your food with other people. Not everybody was sharing their food with other people, as we will see. So I hear there's divisions among you. Division is the word, it means to, it's schismata, it's to rip or to tear like a garment, to fray a garment.

And so he says, I partially believe it, for there must also be factions among you that those who are approved may be recognized among you. Therefore, when you come together in one place, is it not to eat the Lord's Supper? For in eating, one takes his own supper ahead of others. One is hungry, another is drunk.

What? Do you not have houses to eat and drink in? Or do you despise the church of God and shame those who have nothing? What shall I say to you? Shall I praise you in this?

I do not praise you. Okay, the love feast, the Agape Feast. You bring your own food, you gather together, you have a meal. The love feast culminates in taking the elements of the Lord's Supper together. It was more than just a potluck, more than just a meal. It was the Lord's Supper as well as eating. For some people who were slaves, very poor, it was the only decent meal they got all week. So they were looking forward with anticipation to the day or the night the church gathers together for the Agape Feast and then take the Lord's Supper together. The problem is some of the richer folks were bringing their own picnic baskets with all sorts of goodies and their own flagons of wine, but they weren't sharing it with anybody. And so they were just consuming it on themselves.

The poor people didn't have much of anything, if anything at all, and so they'd have to go away hungry. Well, the rich who brought their own food, who weren't sharing it with anyone even though they had plenty, were gorging themselves and some were bringing wine to the feast and getting drunk. Imagine people coming to church with a bottle and drinking it and then drinking way too much. Paul says, I don't praise you for this. Shall I praise you for this? I do not praise you.

You are in effect despising the church instead of sharing with one another. For I received from the Lord that which I also delivered to you, that the Lord Jesus on the same night that he was betrayed took bread. When he had given thanks, he broke it and said, Take, eat. This is my body which is broken for you.

Do this in remembrance of me. Now Paul is going now through what the Lord Jesus did with his disciples the night that he was betrayed. Going through what the meaning of taking the Lord's Supper together is, what it means, what we do, how important an event it is. Different church groups have differing views of the meaning of communion, the Lord's Supper. A Roman Catholic view, the view that I grew up with, was a doctrine called transubstantiation. It is the belief that there is a substantive change, a substantial change in the elements themselves so that the bread and the wine change substance from bread and wine into the literal body and literal blood of Jesus. Because the Catholic bishops say Jesus said, This is my body.

This is my blood. They take that very literally and so they believe in transubstantiation, that there is a change in the elements into the literal body and blood of Jesus Christ. I do not hold to that view.

I believe that borders on cannibalism. In fact, some of the early adversaries of the church misunderstood the meaning of the Lord's Supper and said that Christians were cannibals because of the Lord's Supper, because of this misunderstanding. So I do not believe in transubstantiation. A second view that is the Lutheran view, more Martin Luther, is consubstantiation. That is, the presence of Christ is, as they say, within and under the communion elements so that there is a real presence of the risen Christ with the elements that you take for communion. So it is a step down from transubstantiation.

They do not really become that, but the presence of Christ is with that. Then a step below that is what John Calvin believed in. He believed that there is a spiritual presence or a spiritual union. They almost sound the same, but it is a little bit less than Luther believed. Then there was another reformer called Ulrich Zwingli, who was a Swiss reformer, who believed what most Protestants today believe in, and that is it is all emblematic.

There is no presence of Christ or special embodiment of Christ in the elements, but rather they are emblematic. They speak of, they point to, they are a living sermon that remind us of what Jesus did on the cross, nothing less but nothing more than that. So with that as a background, we will finish out this chapter. I received from the Lord, verse 23, that which I also delivered to you. Now I believe this should be the aim of every pastor, every preacher, every small group leader who prepares a Bible study. That we will have waited on the Lord, and the Lord teaches us, speaks to us, delivers things to us. We receive from the Lord as we wait on Him, and then we deliver to the people who listen to us what we ourselves have received from Him.

That is a good model to take. Paul said, I did that, that the Lord Jesus on the same night in which He was betrayed took bread. When He had given thanks, He broke it and said, Take, eat, this is my body broken for you.

Do this in remembrance of me. So, number one, when we take the Lord's Supper together, we are looking backwards, we are looking to the past. We take the elements to remember Him, to recall that Jesus died for us, shed His blood for us, and then rose again. We are remembering that sacrifice.

So we are looking to the past. I have always found it interesting that Jesus never said, Build a mausoleum for me in the place where I raised from the dead. He never said, Build a monument to me where I preached the Sermon on the Mount Galilee. He said, The only thing I want you to do to raise up as a memorial or as a remembrance is this meal. Take the bread, take the wine, and when you do that, remember what I've done for you. That's the key, that's the mausoleum, that's the remembrance.

This is my body broken for you, do this in remembrance of me. So we look to the past. Number two, we look to the present. In the same manner, He took the cup after supper, saying, This cup is the new covenant in my blood. This do as often as you drink it in remembrance of me. So we look to the present.

This is the cup. I believe that our relationship with God should always be in the present tense, not just in the past tense. Too many people, too many Christians say, I remember what it was like, all those old days, all those good old days. I remember the intimacy I had with Christ, and how wonderful.

Well, what about now, dude? Are you walking with Him now? Is He speaking to you now?

Are you close to His heart now? If your relationship with God is only a past tense experience, it needs to be brought into the present tense. This is the covenant. It is a present reality. Your Christian life should be, and all of your experiences of the past, should never be a hitching post, only a guide post.

Reference point, but you go further and further and deeper and longer. So we look to the past, we look to the present. Verse 26, we look to the future, we look ahead. As often as you eat this bread and drink this cup, you proclaim the Lord's death until He comes. So when we take communion, you see what Paul is doing is like, you guys got it all wrong. You are making this all about yourselves when, let me tell you what the idea of the Lord's Supper is all about.

You look to the past, you look to the present, and you look to the future. Because when you take the Lord's Supper, you remember that Jesus said, when He took the elements with His disciples, He held up the wine and He said, I will not drink of the fruit of the vine anymore until I drink it with you anew in my Father's kingdom. In essence, He is saying, I am coming back. And so when we take the Lord's Supper, we remember Jesus came, but He is coming again.

There is a future element to it. Verse 27, therefore, whoever eats this bread or drinks this cup of the Lord in an unworthy manner will be guilty of the body and blood of the Lord. But let a man examine himself, and so let him eat of the bread and drink of the cup.

For he who eats and drinks in an unworthy manner eats and drinks judgment to himself, not discerning the Lord's body. So number four, we look within. We examine ourselves, we look within. We look to the past, we look to the present, we look to the future, we look within. We don't want to do it in an unworthy manner.

Some people get all hung up on this. They go, oh, I'm so unworthy to take communion. It doesn't say, are you worthy to take communion?

It says, don't take communion in an unworthy way, in an unworthy manner. The issue isn't, are you worthy to be saved? None of us is worthy to be saved.

Are you worthy to be in God's presence? None of us are. None of us is, none of us are.

Anyway, we're not. The idea is the manner in which you take it, the manner in which you take it, in an unworthy manner. So we examine ourselves, and I always believe when you know that we're going to have the Lord's Supper, we're going to have it in a couple weeks, whenever you know it's coming, if you know it's going to be on a Wednesday night or a weekend, before you come to church, it would be good to have a period of examination, self-examination. So you don't take it frivolously or routinely or religiously or just traditionally. You really think about what it means to you, what Jesus did for you. Are there areas of your life you need to bring and ask forgiveness for and confession about?

And you do it in a way that is befitting the event itself, the remembrance itself. So we examine ourselves, verse 28. Remember it was Socrates who said, the unexamined life is not worth living. Well, the unexamined communion is not worth having. We want to examine our hearts, get our hearts right before the Lord and go back to the cross as we do. For he who eats or drinks in an unworthy manner, eats and drinks judgment to himself, not discerning the Lord's body.

What does he mean by that? For this reason, verse 30, many are weak and sick among you and many sleep. That is to euphemism for have died. Now this is interesting because Paul seems to indicate that people in the Corinthian church were getting sick and dying because they didn't properly evaluate and discern the meaning of the Lord's Supper.

That they were doing it frivolously, selfishly, getting drunk, etc. And that that was causing physical discipline in the church via sickness and death. Now that sounds odd to us and maybe we should first of all say thank you Jesus that that hasn't happened to us.

Or at least not to our knowledge it has. But in the early church this was not unusual. Ananias and Sapphira were part of the early church. They were members of the early church and I believe went to heaven when they died. But they died nonetheless in judgment for lying to Peter and lying to the Holy Spirit. And so they kicked the bucket and they buried them that day outside the streets, outside the city of Jerusalem. But it was physical, direct discipline that caused the end of their lives.

Also 1 Corinthians chapter 5, there was a case of incest in the church. Remember what Paul said, deliver them to Satan for the realm of Satan, the world. Deliver them to Satan for the destruction of the flesh that the Spirit might be saved in the day of the Lord Jesus. You see the reason for this kind of discipline was not condemnation but it was protection. Purification of the church but also protection.

So it's like they can't go further so that they don't go any further in that kind of rebellion. God would spare that by taking their lives as an act of mercy so that they could go no further. For if we would judge ourselves we would not be judged. When we are judged we are chastened by the Lord that we may not be condemned with the world. Therefore my brethren, when you come together to eat, it's still talking of the Lord's Supper, wait for one another. Don't dig into the roast beef and eat it all. When I was a kid and we had four boys, I'm the youngest boy, when it was dinner time my mom would put dinner on the table and I would sometimes watch my older brother or brothers like grab almost all of the chicken or beef and there's like a little leg left for me.

So you know dinner time for some of us was like survival of the fittest and they were fittest because they were bigger than I was. That was happening in the church. Paul says you got to wait for each other, you got to show deference, don't pig out. You won't find that in the translation, pig out.

Wait for each other. But if anyone is hungry let them eat at home lest you come together for judgment and the rest I will set in order when I come. So when we take the Lord's Supper, we look to the past, remembrance, we look to the present, we have a present-day covenant relationship, we look to the future, Jesus is coming again, we look inwardly, we look within ourselves, we examine our hearts and now we look around and we consider our brother, consider our sister, we wait for them, we show love to them.

It's a family meal. 1 John 4, if God so loved us, we should love one another. I'm glad chapter 11 is over.

It's there. I covered it. I don't shy away from covering any text or scripture or tackling any topic but there are just certain ones that it's like, okay, next, let's go on to the next. And the next is awfully exciting because it's another issue they asked Paul the Apostle about. That is the use of spiritual gifts within the assembly. Now concerning spiritual gifts, brothers, and I don't want you to be ignorant, he said, so he lays out in chapters 12 a little bit and 13 to balance it out, but 12, 13, and 14, the issue of spiritual gifts in the assembly and we will see the use and the abuse of spiritual gifts within the church of Corinth and you will be amazed at how not much has changed since the days of Corinth when it comes to how churches still use or abuse spiritual gifts.

So we get into some pretty interesting and exciting and very application important territory. That wraps up Skip Heitzig's message from his series Expound 1 Corinthians. Now here's Skip to share how you can help keep this broadcast going strong, connecting you and others around the world with the Lord. The Bible eagerly anticipates the second coming of Jesus, but just as God's word reveals his plan for the future of the world, it also reveals his plan for your life today. That's why we want to help listeners like you connect to his truth through this broadcast so you can passionately live out his purposes for you every day.

And right now you can help others discover that same powerful truth. Here's how. To give today, simply call 800-922-1888.

That number again is 800-922-1888. Or visit slash donate. That's slash donate. Your generosity helps keep this biblical encouragement coming your way and going out around the world to help change more lives. And did you know there's an exciting biblical resource available right at your fingertips through your mobile device? You can find several of Skip's Bible reading plans in the YouVersion Bible app.

Simply download the app and search Skip Heitzig. Next week, Skip Heitzig shares how you can know your spiritual gifts and balance them with love and truth. Make a connection, make a connection at the foot of the cross and cast all burdens on his word. Make a connection, a connection. Connect with Skip Heitzig is a presentation of Connection Communications, connecting you to God's never-changing truth in ever-changing times.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-03-03 06:31:01 / 2023-03-03 06:40:09 / 9

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