3. LOOK FORWARD 1 Cor 11 has that striking verse 26: Whenever you eat this bread and drink this cup, you proclaim the Lord’s death until he comes. Its as though, at this point, these worship instructions answer the question: 'How often and how long do we keep doing this?'. And the instructions say' Keep on doing this (it doesn’t say how often) but keep on remembering until you meet Jesus.
The little picture, for you and me, concerns the end of our lives when Jesus, who is the Resurrection and the Life receives us into that inheritance, that will never perish, spoil or fade kept in heaven. You never stop needing Jesus.
But its also for the big picture, for the end of the end of old creation and initiation of the new creation when Jesus comes again. And the pictures like Rev 19,21 of the roar of judgement and Hallelujah at the wedding feast of the Lamb and the new heaven and new earth where no more death or mourning or crying or pain. Oh, it’s a great stretch to see that lonely figure on the cross as the Alpha and Omega of everything that is. The one before whom, at the end, every knee will bow. But this is the Lord over our future. A Lord whose eternal promises sound out again as we do this to remember him. We belong with him. He promises: I shall never leave you.
And I love the word proclaim in that verse. Because it is a kind of preaching, making impact word. Not just remembering how our story began with Jesus, but how the very act of remembering in his presence means things happen. Forgiveness, Faith, Hope, Guidance. When I was training to be a minister we had a very strong personality for Principal. And his strongest passion was taking communion seriously. In college chapel nobody was allowed to be absent. He always spoke about its importance. And I later discovered that he had been a schoolboy at the Perse School in Cambridge, and it was at the communion service at St. Andrew’s St. Baptist church that Jesus Christ encountered him for real. His life was changed. Let proclaim with expectation as we take communion.
Christ has died.. Humbly we look back and give thanks for Jesus who died for us.
Christ is risen Joyfully, we look around and give thanks for Jesus who is alive for us and made us his people.
Christ will come again, we look forward and give thanks to Jesus who holds the future - ours and the world's - in his hands.