The Physical Side
Originally scheduled for
One of the earliest heresies of the church was something called
the Gnostic heresy. It's followers believed that all things made of
matter were necessarily evil; things that were spiritual were
necessarily good. The attitude stems from Greek philosophy, and does
not concern us in the present day. But it certainly was a concern in
the early days of the church; it is not too much to assume that
Christ took care to see that this heresy would be defeated.
One way in which he did that was to give us a material, physical
reminder of his sacrifice. Think about it: he could've just given us
words to recite. He did that with the Lord's prayer. But for
communion, he gave us the simplest of symbols: bread and wine. He
wanted us to have something tangible, something we could hold in our
Why is this important? The most important ritual in Christianity
involves simple material things. How then can we deny that Jesus had
a body just like ours? He wasn't it goes to walk them left no
footprints; he had a shoe size. From that we may safely conclude
that he suffered in the flesh — the same kind of pain and suffering
that you and I go through. Even more important, he rose from the
dead with a physical body. He ate and drank with the disciples; he
told Thomas to put his hands into the wounds in his physical body.
So we may have confidence when he tells us that he will return and
we shall rise from the grave in a physical body. No one knows what
that body is like, except Christ. But it is safe to trust him when
he tells us we will be coming home.
All this was made possible at the cross. Without that sacrifice,
there is no resurrection. His resurrection is our guarantee of our
resurrection. Therefore, as you take of this communion, remember
Remember who it was who went to the cross for you — and give him
your love for it.
Remember the great love of the father which drove him to it, and
know that you are his child.
Remember that he is coming again, to judge the living and the dead —
and that means you, and me. Therefore, examine your self and partake
in a worthy manner.