Do you know what it means to partake of the Passover in an unworthy manner? In less than a week from now, the churches of God will commemorate this very important and solemn occasion. This is very important because as we will see later, partaking of the Passover service in an unworthy manner comes with a heavy penalty. In this post, let me share with you 3 ways on how to partake of the Passover in a worthy manner. The 3 points I’m going to give come from I Corinthians 11:27-29.
We will be guilty of the body and blood of Jesus if we take the Passover lightly. If we don’t have the right respect, reverence, and value to the life and death of Jesus Christ, then we will suffer the consequences.
What is the best way to demonstrate our respect and reverence to Jesus Christ’s sacrifice for us? It is through baptism. So this brings us to our first point.
Point no. 1: You need to be baptized
“So that whoever should eat this bread, or drink the cup of the Lord, unworthily, that one will be guilty of the body and of the blood of the Lord” (I Corinthians 11:27).
When you look back at the history of the Israelites, one of the requirements for them to be eligible in partaking of the Passover is circumcision. In the same manner, in the New Testament time, you need to be baptized before you can be part of the Passover.
However, if you come to think about it, all of us, by ourselves, are unworthy to partake of the Passover service.
No amount of obedience to the physical and even spiritual intent of the law will bring us salvation. Once you committed a sin, even just one tiny sin, you are qualified for the penalty of the eternal death. But with the help of Jesus Christ, we are redeemed and bought with the price of his life.
Some of us might be thinking that we are unworthy to be baptized and eventually be part of the Passover. I think that this is one of the most common reasons that some members of the church delay baptism.
We think that we don’t have what it takes to be baptized. Well, that’s exactly why we need to be baptized because you and I don’t have what it takes to be part of God’s family if we only rely on ourselves. We need the help of the Holy Spirit and we can only have that if we are baptized.
Satan will do his best to deceive us that we are unworthy of Jesus’ suffering. He will convince us that we are worthless and unacceptable for Jesus Christ. Let not Satan deceive you.
Point no. 2: You need to examine yourself
“But let a man examine himself, and so let him eat of the bread, and let him drink of the cup” (I Corinthians 11:28).
The word “examine” comes from the Greek word, dokimazo. It literally means to “test”. It is very important that we examine ourselves before we partake of the Passover.
So how do you examine yourself? You need to read the Bible. We need to examine ourselves through the lens of the Word of God. There is no other standard that we should use. We cannot look at other people and compare ourselves. We cannot use them to justify the condition of our spiritual life.
We cannot say that we attend Sabbath services every week and this guy sitting next to me comes every once in a while. Surely I am better than this person. Or we may say, I read the Bible every day, I listen to messages, watch beyond today and even always visit the UCG website daily. While this may be good brethren, if you don’t allow the knowledge of God to convert our life, to change how we live, then we are missing the whole point.
Ask yourself, how much have I grown since the last Passover? Are there still some areas in my life that are filled with leaven and sin? Are we spiritual growing or dying?
We cannot completely depend on how much spiritual knowledge we have and use it as a measurement of our spiritual growth. Even if you memorize the whole Bible, from cover to cover, if you don’t do what you learned, then it is all useless.
We need to constantly strive to develop the character God wants us to build.
Point no. 3: Do your best to be reconciled to your brother
“For he eating and drinking unworthily eats and drinks judgment to himself, not discerning the body of the Lord” (I Corinthians 11:29).
What is the body of the Lord? The Lord’s body also refers to the Church. Remember that the Passover pictures our reconciliation with God, but it can also picture our reconciliation with our brethren. Before the Passover, it is highly encouraged for us to be at peace with our brethren.
You need to examine yourself and see whether there is a brother that you have offended. Do you have a brother whom you have hurt? Then it is time to say sorry and be reconciled to that brother. Or did someone hurt you, but that someone didn’t know? Then you need to go to that brother, you and him alone.
Remember what Jesus Christ said: “A new commandment I give unto you, That ye love one another; AS I HAVE LOVED YOU, that ye also love one another” (John 13:34). There’s no doubt. Jesus established a very high standard for us to live by. Jesus loves us by ultimately giving up His life for us. Though it might be difficult, we need to demonstrate our love to one another with every fiber of our being.
Is there a brother that you don’t love? It is time for you to let go of that hate. Remember what the Apostle John said, “If a man say, I love God, and hateth his brother, he is a LIAR: for he that loveth not his brother whom he hath seen, how can he love God whom he hath not seen” (I John 4:3).
Are you a liar? Do you hate someone in the church? If you look around when you are in the Sabbath service, do you see someone that you hate? If yes, then it is time for you to let go of that anger and hatred because you might be in danger of unworthily partaking of the Passover if you still have that bitterness in your heart.
In the final analysis, God looks to the heart. It is He who determines whether our attitude is right or not when it comes to partaking the Passover. I hope we will not forget these 3 points brethren on how we should partake of the Passover.
Let us not take the Passover lightly. We still have a few days to go before Passover and I hope we will take advantage of these remaining days and do the necessary steps towards the Passover service. It is my sincerest hope that on the night of the Passover, God will look into our heart and see the right attitude and character.
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