Previous Challenge Entry (Level 2 – Intermediate)
Topic: Cross (as in the Cross of Christ) (08/17/06)
- TITLE: The Altar Of The Cross
By Doug Laird
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The last and final altar that God the Father acknowledged was the cross of the Lord Jesus Christ. What took place there cannot be reproduced through religious rituals. Attempts to do so are the products of the ignorance of Scripture (1), the arrogance of Man (2), and “religion” (3).
Celebration of the Lord’s Supper or Communion is not for the purpose of reproducing, presenting, or making sacrifices to the Lord. The last sacrifice that God the Father acknowledged for full payment of the entire world’s sin debt was the spiritual death (separation from God) of the humanity of the Lord Jesus Christ while on the cross.
Our Lord taught that the purpose of celebrating the Lord’s Supper or Communion was to bring into “remembrance” (4) the work that He was about to accomplish on the cross.
Whatever God repeats in Scripture is of the utmost importance. God saw fit to reiterate the purpose of celebrating the Lord’s Supper or Communion to and through the Apostle Paul (5), who was not a Christian at the time or present when the Lord gave the same instructions to His disciples on the night He was betrayed.
Much of the pageantry that surrounds the celebrating of the Lord’s Supper or Communion in many sectors of the Church is the product of religion (6) and has no Biblical basis what so ever.
This does not diminish the seriousness (7) or the sacredness of the Communion ritual that we are commanded to take part in on a regular basis.
However, it is an attack on the Person and Works of the Lord Jesus Christ if the symbolic elements are elevated to equal status of Who and What was accomplished on the Cross through via effort or by a “priesthood” that was not ordained for the Church Age.
The function of a “priest” is to represent someone before God. The “priesthood” (8) of the Church Age consists of every born again believer, who through the relationship established with the Lord Jesus Christ, has direct access to the throne of God.
In the Church Age there are no sacrificing priests as there are no altars. Nor is there a need of human mediators for any other spiritual purpose, “For there is one God and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus (9).”
Adding (10) ANYTHING, in either doctrine or practice, to BELIEVING (11) in Who and What was accomplished on the cross to obtain or retain salvation makes those who do so “enemies of the cross of Christ” (12).
Scripture taken from the HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION ®. NIV ®. Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 by International Bible Society. Used by permission of Zondervan Publishing House. All rights reserved.
(1) Hosea 4:6 * 2 Proverbs 14: 12 * (3) Matthew 15:9 (4) Luke 22: 19 (NIV) * (5) 1Cor. 11: 24, 25 (6) Matthew 15: 9 * (7) 1Cor. 11: 29, 30 * (8) 1Pet. 2: 9 NIV * (9) 1Timothy 2: 5 NIV * (10) Proverbs 30: 6 * (11) John 3:18 * (12) Philippians 3: 18 (NIV)
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