Day 5 Read: 1 Corinthians 11:27-34
Whoever, therefore, eats the bread or drinks the cup of the Lord in an unworthy manner will be guilty concerning the body and blood of the Lord. 28 Let a person examine himself, then, and so eat of the bread and drink of the cup. 29 For anyone who eats and drinks without discerning the body eats and drinks judgment on himself. 30 That is why many of you are weak and ill, and some have died. 31 But if we judged ourselves truly, we would not be judged. 32 But when we are judged by the Lord, we are disciplined so that we may not be condemned along with the world. 33 So then, my brothers, when you come together to eat, wait for one another— 34 if anyone is hungry, let him eat at home—so that when you come together it will not be for judgment. About the other things I will give directions when I come.
Reflect: Why is it important that we examine ourselves before taking the Lord’s Supper? Read verse 29. What is the result of not taking the time to look at your own life before taking communion?
Consider: To avoid such serious offenses, every believer ought to examine himself. Christians must scrutinize their motives and actions to see that they match the significance of the Lord’s Supper. This self-examination is to take place before eating and drinking. The reason for taking time for self-examination is evident: He who participates without recognizing the body of the Lord brings divine judgment on himself.
This verse does not say that the Lord’s Supper should be observed introspectively, with participants focusing mainly on their own hearts. Rather, Paul offered this instruction as a corrective for a specific problem. In general, the Lord’s Supper should be a time of celebration in which Christians focus on Christ’s honor, the church’s unity, and the proclamation of the gospel. The focus should be on others, not on oneself. It is only in the preparation for the Lord’s Supper that individuals must turn their attention inward.5
Respond: Why do we celebrate the Lord’s Supper as a church family, and not as individuals? How does the Lord’s Supper encourage biblical community? Have you experienced this?
5 Richard L. Pratt Jr, I & II Corinthians, vol. 7, Holman New Testament Commentary (Nashville, TN: Broadman & Holman Publishers, 2000), 202.