Remembering, Forgetting, and the Lord’s Supper

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We talk a lot about remembering when we gather around the table for the Lord’s Supper. In the Bible remembering often implies more than just not forgetting a set of details surrounding events. Remembering implies that we live in light of that which we remember. When God’s people crossed through the Red sea and lived in the wilderness before entering the promised land they were told over and over again to remember what God had done for them. Did God think they would forget the events? Was it possible they would actually lose the memory of crossing through the sea on dry ground? I doubt it. What is more likely is that God was telling them not just to remember those events but to live a life in light of God’s redeeming acts on their behalf.

The ultimate act of forgetting is to live as if the events don’t matter. We have seen this with September 11th. People flooded the churches in the weeks following. Today, many of those people no longer attend. Did they forget the events of that day? No. If you asked them what happened they remember. But with time and distance from the events themselves comes a forgetting of the implications of those events on our everyday lives.

I am afraid the same thing can happen when it comes to the Lord’s Supper. We all remember what Jesus did for us. That is not hard to do. But is it possible to show our forgetfulness by living as if those events didn’t really matter. The Supper is not done well just because Jesus was reflected upon and we imagine him in our minds hanging on the cross. The Supper is not done well just because we envision the blood as we take the cup. The Supper is done well when we live as if what Jesus did for us matters so that when we gather around the table it is a natural outgrowth of the life we have lived all week long. The ultimate act of remembrance is to live every single day in light of what Jesus has done for us. If we live as if it doesn’t matter, it doesn’t matter how well we reflect for those 5 minutes each Sunday.

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