The Lord’s Supper and Racism

SERIES – Pulling Up Another Chair to the Table

1 Corinthians 11:17-23 HCSB

17   Now in giving the following instruction I do not praise you, since you come together not for the better but for the worse.

18   For to begin with, I hear that when you come together as a church there are divisions among you, and in part I believe it.

19   There must, indeed, be factions among you, so that those who are approved may be recognized among you.

20   Therefore, when you come together, it is not really to eat the Lord’s Supper.

21   For at the meal, each one eats his own supper ahead of others. So one person is hungry while another gets drunk!

22   Don’t you have houses to eat and drink in? Or do you look down on the church of God and embarrass those who have nothing? What should I say to you? Should I praise you? I do not praise you for this!

23   For I received from the Lord what I also passed on to you: On the night when He was betrayed, the Lord Jesus took bread,

24   gave thanks, broke it, and said, “This is My body, which is for you. Do this in remembrance of Me.”

1 Corinthians 10:1-6 HCSB1 Now I want you to know, brothers, that our fathers were all under the cloud, all passed through the sea, 2 and all were baptized into Moses in the cloud and in the sea. 3 They all ate the same spiritual food, 4 and all drank the same spiritual drink. For they drank from a spiritual rock that followed them, and that rock was Christ. 5 But God was not pleased with most of them, for they were struck down in the wilderness. 6 Now these things became examples for us, so that we will not desire evil things as they did.

The Greek word for banquet is eranos.

Acts 2:41-47 GNV41 Many of them believed his message and were baptized, and about three thousand people were added to the group that day. 42 They spent their time in learning from the apostles, taking part in the fellowship, and sharing in the fellowship meals and the prayers. 43 Many miracles and wonders were being done through the apostles, and everyone was filled with awe. 44 All the believers continued together in close fellowship and shared their belongings with one another. 45 They would sell their property and possessions, and distribute the money among all, according to what each one needed. 46 Day after day they met as a group in the Temple, and they had their meals together in their homes, eating with glad and humble hearts, 47 praising God, and enjoying the good will of all the people. And every day the Lord added to their group those who were being saved.

Acts 4:32-36 GNV32 The group of believers was one in mind and heart. None of them said that any of their belongings were their own, but they all shared with one another everything they had. 33 With great power the apostles gave witness to the resurrection of the Lord Jesus, and God poured rich blessings on them all. 34 There was no one in the group who was in need. Those who owned fields or houses would sell them, bring the money received from the sale, 35 and turn it over to the apostles; and the money was distributed according to the needs of the people. 36 And so it was that Joseph, a Levite born in Cyprus, whom the apostles called Barnabas (which means “One who Encourages”),

It helps to forge relationships and community through:

  • Conversational space
  • Relational space
  • Healing space
  1. Self-worth is affirmed
  2. Acceptance is expressed
  3. Forgiveness is extended
  4. Brokenness is mended

Graeco-Roman homes had a special place for dining called the triclinium.

The us and them mentality; the insider and outsider distinction.

1 Corinthians 13:4 MSG – Love never gives up. Love cares more for others than for self. Love doesn’t want what it doesn’t have. Love doesn’t strut, Doesn’t have a swelled head,

Factionalism in society means:

I. No communion

1 Corinthians 10:16 KJV – The cup of blessing which we bless, is it not the communion of the blood of Christ? The bread which we break, is it not the communion of the body of Christ?

James 2:1-9 MSG1 My dear friends, don’t let public opinion influence how you live out our glorious, Christ-originated faith. 2 If a man enters your church wearing an expensive suit, and a street person wearing rags comes in right after him, 3 and you say to the man in the suit, “Sit here, sir; this is the best seat in the house!” and either ignore the street person or say, “Better sit here in the back row,” 4 haven’t you segregated God’s children and proved that you are judges who can’t be trusted? 5 Listen, dear friends. Isn’t it clear by now that God operates quite differently? He chose the world’s down-and-out as the kingdom’s first citizens, with full rights and privileges. This kingdom is promised to anyone who loves God. 6 And here you are abusing these same citizens! Isn’t it the high and mighty who exploit you, who use the courts to rob you blind? 7 Aren’t they the ones who scorn the new name—”Christian”—used in your baptisms? 8 You do well when you complete the Royal Rule of the Scriptures: “Love others as you love yourself.” 9 But if you play up to these so-called important people, you go against the Rule and stand convicted by it.

Luke 14:12-14 MSG12 Then he turned to the host. “The next time you put on a dinner, don’t just invite your friends and family and rich neighbors, the kind of people who will return the favor. 13 Invite some people who never get invited out, the misfits from the wrong side of the tracks. 14 You’ll be—and experience—a blessing. They won’t be able to return the favor, but the favor will be returned—oh, how it will be returned!—at the resurrection of God’s people.”

“A caste system is an artificial construction, a fixed and embedded ranking of human value that sets the presumed supremacy of one group against the presumed inferiority of other groups on the basis of ancestry and often immutable traits, traits that would be neutral in the abstract but are ascribed life-and-death meaning in a hierarchy favoring the dominant caste whose forebears designed it. A caste system uses rigid, often arbitrary boundaries to keep the ranked groupings apart, distinct from one another and in their assigned places.”

Isabel Wilkerson, author
Caste

“Racism pays poor Whites a psychological wage.”

WEB Dubois

II. No comprehension

“He drew a circle that shut me out. Heretic, rebel, a thing to flout. But love and I had the wit to win: We drew a circle and took him IN!” From the poem “Outwitted” by Edwin Markham.

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