When we make a profession of faith we might think that we are in the church and we have arrived at the last step in our Christian walk. We hear the Apostle Paul exhort us through the Corinthian church to examine ourselves to see if we are in the faith. Does Paul mean that when people make a profession that they are not in the faith? Is the Apostle Paul saying that we just randomly loose our faith? How do we live out this faith in Christ?
Our Lord makes the promise that the one who eats of the bread and drinks of the cup eats and drinks the flesh and blood of Christ. How can Christ say such a thing? We we really want to slaughter our Lord, cannibalize his body, and celebrate such a wicked act? However, when Christ speaks this sounds exactly like what Christ is inviting us to do. So, what do we do with this strong language? How can such language be encouraging?
Our Lord gathers together with his disciples to celebrate passover. It is during this passover feast that Christ and the disciples have the first communion or Lord’s Supper. It would seem that if the Lord’s Supper is instituted at passover that the Lord’s Supper and passover would be the same thing. However, reformed people have not seen them being the exact same thing. How can we make a distinction between the Lord’s Supper and the Passover? What has Christ stated that helps us understand this disinction?
The Lord has created human beings to be creative. This is good because it enables us to create, to build, and to live out what it is to be in the image of God. However, the down side of this is that we are creative in how we apply the law of God. If we are seeking to use the law lawfully that is great, but the problem is that we can set up our own standard that is not intended in the law of God. We might wonder why we would do such a thing, but we find that answer when Christ lays out the intention of the law. How can we be faithful disciples when the Law of God is impossibly rigorous?
Paul lays out the declaration for the Lord’s people to judge themselves prior to coming to the Lord’s Supper. What does this judgment look like? Paul warns the Corinthian church that some people have actually died because they failed to judge themselves. How do we know if we have judged ourselves appropriately?
Jesus enters history to fulfill the law and the prophets. Christ summarizes his mission as the messiah who has entered history fulfill rather than to abolish. Why is this important? What does this definition of his mission tell us about Jesus living up to His name?
Paul, the apostle, gives a very stern warning to the church communicating a warning to Corinth that some people have died in the congregation because they have not appropriately approached the sacrament. This is a passage that can make someone approach the supper with great caution. In fact, someone might not want to come to the supper at all considering that there are people who have died in the past. Why would we come to the Lord’s table when there is such a stern and fixed warning in Scripture?
Jesus tells his disciples that they are the salt of the earth and they are to be the light on the hill. This sounds like Jesus is giving us very strong directives, but what does it mean to be salt and light? What do these commands imply about our Christian life? What does it look like for us to live out this ethic?
Jesus takes his stand on the mountain to teach the crowds and his disciples. This should be a sermon that is full of good news. This is expected to be a sermon where Christ promises absolute victory. However, Christ talks about mourning, oppression, and persecution. How can Christ’s message truly offer us hope? Has the kingdom failed in some way?
The Lord’s people have been enslaved for 400 years and doubt whether or not the Lord is really with them. The Lord promises that his people will not remain in slavey. So, what how is the Lord going to deliver His people from this time of slavery? What is Israel going to do in light of this deliverance that the Lord promises? How does this deliverance pave the way for the Lord’s Supper?