Call to Worship September 1 2019

The Lord’s Supper by Thomas Watson

“Branch 7. If Jesus Christ has provided so holy an ordinance as the Lord’s Supper, let us live suitably to it. Have we received Christ into our hearts? Let us show Him forth—by our heavenliness. Let us show forth Christ by our heavenly words. Let us speak the language of Canaan. When the Holy Spirit came upon the apostles, they spoke with other tongues, Acts 2:4. While we speak the words of grace and soberness—our lips are fragrant with perfume, and drip with honey.

                 Let us show forth Christ by our heavenly affections. Let our sighs and breathings after God, go up as a cloud of incense. ‘Set your affections on things above,’ Colossians 3:2. We should do by our affections, as the farmers do by their corn. If the corn lies low in a damp room, it is in danger of corruption. Therefore, they carry it up into their highest room that it may keep the better. So our affections, if set on earth, are apt to corrupt and be unsavory. Therefore, we should carry them up on high above the world that they may be preserved pure. Breathe after fuller revelations of God. The higher the lark flies— the sweeter it sings. The higher our affections are raised towards heaven—the sweeter joys we feel.

Let us show forth Christ by our heavenly lives, Philippians 3:20. Hypocrites may, in a pang of conscience, have some good affections stirred—but they are as a flushed face, which comes and goes. But the constant tenor of our life must be holy. We must shine forth in a kind of angelic sanctity. It is not enough to have the image of Christ in the heart—but there must be something of Christ manifest in the life.

The scandalous lives of many communicants are a reproach to the Lord’s Supper, and tempt others to infidelity. How odious it is, that those hands which have received the sacramental elements—should be unjust! That those eyes which have been filled with tears at the Lord’s Supper should, afterwards, be filled with envy! That those teeth, which have eaten holy bread, should grind the faces of the poor! That those lips, which have touched the sacramental cup, should greet a harlot! That the mouth which has drunk consecrated wine, should be full of coarse jesting! That they who seem to deify Christ in the Supper, should vilify Him in His members! In a word, that such as pretend to eat Christ’s body and drink His blood at church, should eat the bread of wickedness, and drink the wine of bitterness in their own houses! Proverbs 4:17.

These are like those Italians I have read of, who, at the Lord’s Supper, are so devout, as if they believed God to be in the bread—but in their lives are so profane, as if they did not believe God to be in heaven! Such as these are apt to make the world think that the gospel is but a religious cheat. What shall I say of them? With Judas, they receive the devil in the sop, and are no better than crucifiers of the Lord of glory. As their sin is heinous, so their punishment will be proportional. ‘They eat and drink damnation to themselves,’ 1 Corinthians 11:29.

Oh, that such a luster and majesty of holiness sparkled forth in the lives of communicants, so that others would say, ’These people have been with Jesus!’ And their consciences may lie under the power of this conviction, that the Lord’s Supper has a holy and transforming virtue in it!”