July 25 – LD 30, Day 3: Those Who Come to the Lord’s Supper Must Believe in the Cross of Jesus Christ, Desire to Have Their Faith More and More Strengthened and Their Lives Made More and More Holy.
Sunday the 25th of July
in Heidelberg Catechism Meditations
Read: Isaiah 53
Be sure to read question and answer 81 of the Heidelberg Catechism again before you read this meditation.
Those who come to the Lord’s Supper must desire that their sins be forgiven them. We sin daily. Our sins are grievous in God’s sight. We must be truly sorry for them and repent of them. We long for the assurance that all our sins were forgiven us for the sake of Christ Jesus and because of His great sacrifice on the cross.
To come to the Supper of the Lord, we must of course have a true and saving knowledge of the Lord Jesus Christ. We must know and believe that He is God’s own Son. We must understand why Jesus Christ died on the cross, and what He accomplished through His death on the cross. New Christians should receive instruction in the great truths of the gospel, especially in the truths of what it means that Jesus, in the greatness of His love, offered Himself for us on the cross. His sacrifice was absolutely necessary to pay for our sins. In our coming to the Lord’s Supper, we should be consciously thinking about, and meditating on the truths of Christ and of His cross, and the amazing wonder of His love for us.
Our sins incur the just and holy wrath of God. They separate us from God. They make us worthy of His judgment. We deserve to be condemned because of our sins. So serious are our sins against the Holy God that we deserve to be forever cast away from His presence into the everlasting torment of hell.
Jesus died the awful death of the cross to pay for our sins. He suffered the wrath of God on our behalf. He bore the judgment of God that our sins deserved. By His death on the cross, He paid the awful penalty of our sins. He satisfied the justice of God. He even bore the agony of hell that our sins deserved. In the deepest hour of His suffering, the dreadful darkness that came over the cross, Jesus cried out with a loud voice, “My God, My God, Why hast thou forsaken me.”
When we come to the Lord’s Supper, we must desire to have our faith more and more strengthened. The Lord’s Supper is for those who are weak in faith. We are all weak in faith. The Lord gave us this sacrament to encourage us and to strengthen our weak faith.
When we come to the Lord’s Supper, we must desire to have our lives made more and more holy. Holiness is love and consecration to God. There is no greater power to motivate us to holy living than the true spiritual remembrance of the suffering and death of Jesus on the cross. This is the purpose of the Lord’s Supper.
We are helpless against the power of sin. We cannot overcome the power of sin ourselves, as it continues to operate in our sinful nature and heart. Only God, by the power of His grace and Holy Spirit, can, and will deliver us from the destruction of sin in our lives. He is pleased to do this through the preaching of His word, and through our observing the Lord’s Supper. True Christian living is holiness before God. Holiness is separation from sin. It is love for God. Holiness is spiritual perfection and devotion to God. Only when we are made holy by the grace and Spirit of God can we have fellowship with God and with His Son Jesus Christ. Of this, the Lord’s Supper is a sign and pledge.