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The Lord’s Supper: Worshiping Jesus as a Family

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Brandon D. Smith is a Covenant Member of City Church. He also works with the Christian Standard Bible and teaches theology at California Baptist University.

My parents divorced when I was in my early teens. I don’t remember much about our family dynamics, but there was one constant event that sticks in my mind—eating dinner together. Every single night, no matter what else happened, my family sat around the same table and ate dinner. In a sense, the dinner table was an opportunity to recommit to one another, to look across the table and say, “That’s my father, mother, and brother.”

Taking the Lord’s Supper with my City Church family is one of the great blessings of being a member here. My wife and I have been members for over a year now, and we’re still trying to learn more people’s names and hear more people’s stories. But even though we’re not on a first-name basis with everyone, taking the Supper together reminds us that we’re one big, eternal family because of what Christ has done for us. 

Not long before his crucifixion, Jesus sat around a table with his family—that ragtag group of disciples he called his brothers. They broke bread and sipped wine, to remember Jesus’s soon-to-be broken body and poured-out blood (Mark 14:24-25). When they looked around at one another, they were bonded together as brothers under the covenant that Jesus’s blood would establish. Christians are bound together by that same blood today.

Sunday morning worship services are more than a time to “get something” from a pastor or worship band; they’re dress rehearsals for eternity. In the final act of God’s story, his family will gather around one table, feasting and giving thanks for Jesus’ broken body and shed blood (Rev. 19:7-10). We rehearse like those disciples, and we look forward to the Last Supper when Jesus returns to make all things right.

While we weekly highlight preaching and music in Sunday morning gatherings (for good reason!), we must not forget the Lord’s Supper, “for as often as you eat this bread and drink the cup, you proclaim the Lord’s death until he comes” (1 Cor. 11:26). When we praise God through the preaching of his Word, the singing of hymns and songs, and partaking in the Lord’s Supper, we present to the world that multi-sided prism of the ways God is worshiped in eternity.

When we gather around the Lord’s table, our eating and drinking is a recommitment. We look at our brothers and sisters in Christ, and remember that we’re one family, one body. We may go our separate ways throughout the week, visiting each other here and there, but we always come back to the same table. We collectively hold the bread and wine or juice and look upward to our Father in heaven, who sent his Son for us. 

Jesus came into the world to save it, and yet he was despised and rejected (Isa. 53:3; Matt. 27:15-44; John 19:1-7). He was nailed to a cross, dying the death we deserved. His cross seemed like an upright coffin, but was actually a victory chariot. Three days after his crucifixion, his heart kick-started and he walked out of the grave, prevailing over the sin and death that nailed him to the cross.

The Lord’s Supper is a beautiful, powerful, tangible reminder of that victory. Because of Jesus, we are sons and daughters, adopted by the Father (Gal. 4:4-7). Take a seat at the table with your brothers and sisters, and proclaim what he has done. 

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This was adapted from a post Brandon wrote at He Reads Truth.

Dear College Students, Church Doesn't Suck

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It’s common knowledge now that lots of college students drop out of church after high school. Maybe it is the hypocrisy and corruption that we have all seen. Maybe it is the abundance of other ways to live presented on the college campus. Whatever it is, a lot of college students choose not to attend church. I can’t blame them. I have had periods in both high school as a non-believer and in college as a Christian where I was less than excited about church. I get it. Sitting and listening to a guy talk for an hour is something you already have to do five days a week. And your mom doesn’t go to college (sorry Kip) so you can make your own choices now. I understand the college mindset.

That being said, I think that college students should seriously think about being involved in the life of a church. In the myriad of ideas being thrown around on the college campus, truth is very hard to find. All sorts of thoughts about happiness and meaning in life are preached in fraternity parties, dorm rooms, rec centers and intramural fields. Your Instagram, Snapchat, and YikYak have a story about what matters and is most important. But are they telling us the truth about life? City Church in Murfreesboro has done series addressing sex, social media, and relationships in the past two years. The Bible has so much to say about happiness, purpose, grace and justice in a world that talks a lot, but seldom gives a solution. Please give the church another chance. It is certainly flawed, but I believe that if you connect with a gospel-centered, Bible-teaching church, you will be deeply blessed by that experience.

Here are some practical ways that college students can invest at City Church in Murfreesboro:

1. Attend services on Sunday at either 9 AM or 10:45 AM

It is vital that you hear the Word of God with the people of God. You will be rejuvenated as you worship God with the people of God. Consistent church attendance allows you to meet other Christians who can engage with you personally on a deeper level. borocitychurch.com

2. Attend the Grove on Sunday nights at 8 PM

Our college gathering is about equipping as college students. What do you think about sex, dating, or living on mission? Godly men and women from our church will show you what the Bible has to say about truth in these areas of great confusion.

3. Join a Community Group

Community Groups at City Church exist to help you develop an authentic Christian community. You will be in relationship with people who can help you see things in new ways. Don’t only follow the advice of your peers. Johnny Sophomore knows no more about life’s true meaning than you do, I promise!

4. Serve the Church

Be a servant: watch the kids, clean up before the service or help follow up new guests. Servants will always be a blessing to the church. And reach out to other people. It doesn’t matter if you’re new. Build relationships by taking initiative to do something other than finding the next Pokestop.

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