Stalactites and Stalagmites

Stalactites and Stalagmites

AMC Training

London True Jesus Church

8th to 13th Jan 2006


Paul referred the cup as "the communion of the blood of Christ" and the bread as "the communion of the body of Christ." (1 Cor 10:16). The Greek word for communion has the meaning of "fellowship, participating, and sharing." The term the Lord's Supper is used only in 1 Cor 11:20. The practice is also known as the Lord's Table (from 1 Cor 10:21), and the Eucharist (from the Greek word for "giving thanks"; Luke 22:17,19; 1 Cor 11:24). The expression breaking of bread (Acts 2:42,46; 20:7,11) probably refers to receiving the Lord's Supper with a common meal known as the LOVE FEAST (2 Peter 2:13; Jude 12).


The Lord first instituted it. The institution of the Lord's Supper (Matt 26:17-30; Mark 14:12-26; Luke 22:1-23; 1 Cor 11:23-25) took place on the night before Jesus died, at a meal commonly known as the Last Supper. Although there is considerable debate over the issue, the Last Supper probably was the Jewish PASSOVER meal, first instituted by God in the days of Moses (Ex 12:1-14; Num 9:1-5). However, the Bible clearly states that it was instituted in the time of the Passover feast (Lk 22:17).

Jesus is the paschal lamb (1 Cor 5:7). Instituting the Holy Communion during the Passover feast typifying the suffering and death of Jesus. The slaughter of a lamb on the Passover was intended to save God’s people from being killed together with the Egyptian firstborns. The angels of destruction leapt over all the blood-marked houses. The peace, protection and redemption were thus resulted from the sacrifice of the lamb. In a similar vein, the death of Jesus disentangles us from the ensnarement of death,

A Sacrament

A sacrament is a practice instituted and given to the apostles by the Lord Jesus Himself, which represents and confers grace when rightly received, with its physical aspects entirely conformed to the Bible, to effect its spiritual significance.

The Lord Jesus has Himself demonstrated it

  1. The Lord Jesus Himself requested John the Baptist, to baptise Him in River Jordan (Mt 3:13ff).
  2. The Lord Jesus Himself washed the feetof the disciples so as to leave an example for them to follow (Jn 13:1ff).
  3. The Lord Jesus Himself instituted theHoly Communion to commemorate His death (Mt 26:26ff).

The Lord Jesus has commanded His disciples to perform it

  1. Before Jesus' ascension, He instructed His disciples to baptise those who believe (Mk 16:15f, Matt 28:19).
  2. The Lord Jesus told His disciples to follow His example with promise that blessings would follow those who do it (Jn 13:15ff).
  3. When the Lord Jesus was conducting the Last Supper (the Holy Communion), He said to His disciples, "This is My body which is given for you; do this in remembrance of Me." (Lk 22:19).

It concerns salvation

  1. Baptism by immersion is performed for the remission of sins (Acts 2:38).
  2. Footwashing is performed in order to have a part with Jesus (Jn 13:8).
  3. Those who partake of the Holy Communion shall have eternal life (Jn 6:53f).

Material Used

  1. One unleavened bread (1 Cor 10:17)
  2. Pure grape juice (Mt 26:29; Mk 14:25; Lk 22:18).

Procedure for the Sacrament and its observance

  1. Within the same roof
  2. Only the baptized members – those whose doorposts were sprinkled with blood were given the instruction to eat of the lamb and were told not to leave their houses. Jesus ate it with His twelve disciples.
  3. Bread –took bread - blessed/thanked/consecrated (in word) – broke it – distributed it. Cup – took cup – gave thanks – gave it to the disciples.

Its Meanings or Values

The Bread
  1. Take, eat; this is my body (Mt 26:26; Mk 14:22)
  2. This is my body, which is given for you; do this in remembrance of Me (Lk 22:19).
  3. The bread that I shall give is My flesh, which I shall give for the life of the world (Jn 6:51, 53).
  4. Take, eat; this is My body which is broken for you (death); do this in remembrance of Me (1 Cor 11:25).
The Cup
  1. Drink from it all of you. For this is my body of the new covenant, which is shed for many for the remission of sins (Mt 26:29; Mk 14:24).
  2. The new covenant in My blood which is shed for many (Lk 22:20).
  3. This cup is the new covenant in my blood. This you do, as often as you drink it, in remembrance of Me (1 Cor 11:25).
Both the Bread and the Cup -
  1. By partaking of the Communion, we shall have life eternal (Jn 6:53-54).
  2. Partaking of the communion enables us to abide in the Lord (6:56). There are three parts to this relationship. First, it is Jesus, who has given us life in the partaking of His flesh and blood. Second, on our part there must be a conscientious choice to abide in Him. The keeping of the truth enhances the abiding presence of God in our life (Jn 15:7). Third, we who feed on Jesus, by partaking of the Holy Communion, shall live because of Him (Jn 6:57-58). This is the work of God.
  3. We proclaim the Lord’s death till He comes (1 Cor 11:26).

The word “transubstantiation” derives from Latin – ‘trans’ (across), and ‘substantia’ (substance). Transubstantiation is the view held by the Roman Catholic Church. The term is employed in Roman Catholic theology to denote the idea that during the ceremony of the “Mass,” the “bread and wine” are changed, in substance, into the flesh and blood of Christ, even though the elements appear to remain the same.The Council of Trent teaches that after the consecration the body and blood, together with the soul and divinity of our Lord Jesus Christ, are contained "truly, really, and substantially in the sacrament of the most holy Eucharist". This view holds that the bread and wine become the actual body and blood of Christ when the priest speaks the words of institution. This doctrine, known as transubstantiation, holds that while the physical properties (taste, appearance, etc.) of the bread and wine do not change, the inner reality of these elements undergoes a spiritual change.

Comments: There is no biblical principle to verify the change of substance physically. The bread remains as bread after consecration and so does the juice. Neither did Jesus nor the apostles teach otherwise. This teaching shows the ignorance on the part of the RC with regard to the work of the Spirit. The Spirit works at the obedience of believers to effect a spiritual reality.


It is a term commonly applied to the Lutheran concept of the communion supper, though some modern Lutheran theologians reject the use of this term because of its ambiguity. This second viewpoint, developed by Martin Luther, is that Christ's body and blood are truly present "in, with, and under" the bread and wine. The elements do not actually change into Christ's body and blood. But in the same way that heat is present in a piece of hot iron, so Christ is present in the elements. The Lutheran position is often called consubstantiation. The Lutheran church rejects transubstantiation, while insisting that the body and blood of Christ are mysteriously and supernaturally united with the bread and wine, so that they are received when the latter are. This is called consubstantiation. The substance of Christ's Body exists together with the substance of bread, and in like manner the substance of His Blood together with the substance of wine.

How the two substances can coexist is variously explained. The subtlest theory is that, just as God the Son took to Himself a human body without in any way destroying its substance, so does He in the Blessed Sacrament assume the nature of bread. Hence the theory is also called "Impanation", a term founded on the analogy of Incarnation.

The expression, however, is generally associated with Luther. The idea is that in the communion, the body and blood of Christ, and the bread and wine, coexist in union with each other. “Luther illustrated it by the analogy of the iron put into the fire whereby both fire and iron are united in the red-hot iron and yet each continues unchanged” (The Oxford Dictionary of the Christian Church, F.L. Cross, Ed., London: Oxford, 1958, p. 337).

Comments: Jesus said, “This is my body”. In fact, all the accounts on the Holy Communion state that, after consecration, the bread is the body and the cup is the blood of Jesus. This is consistent throughout. Even when Paul received direct revelation from God, the same teaching was imparted to him. Never once does the Bible teach “The substance of Christ’s Body exists together with the substance of bread, and in like manner the substance of His Blood together with the substance of wine.” While being led by his reforming fervour, Luther failed to see the work of the Spirit in the Sacrament, and added and imposed personal understanding unto the sacrament.

Symbolic, or Zwinglian, View. According to this view, partaking of the supper merely commemorates the sacrificial work of Christ, and its value to the participant consists only in the bestowal of a blessing.The third position, known as the symbolic or memorial view, is derived from the teachings of the Swiss reformer, Ulrich Zwingli. Although his teaching is not completely clear, he basically held that the bread and wine were only symbols of the sacrificed body and blood of Christ. He taught that the Lord's Supper is primarily a memorial ceremony of Christ's finished work, but that it is also to be an occasion when God's people pledge their unity with one another and their loyalty to Christ. This is the viewpoint held by most Baptist and independent churches.

Comments: Jesus does not say, “It symbolize my body and my blood”. He says to His disciples, “Unless you eat the flesh of the Son of man and drink His blood. You have no life in Him” (Jn 6:53). He stressed on theoretical accuracy and clarity at the expense of the work of the Spirit. He rendered the mystery of the communion irrelevance.

Spiritual Presence View or The Dynamic View

Finally, there is the view of John Calvin and the Reformed and Presbyterian churches which follow his teachings. Known as the dynamic or spiritual presence view, it stands somewhere between the positions of Luther and Zwingli. According to this view, "this hallowed food (the bread and wine), through concurrence of divine power, is in verity and truth, unto faithful receivers, instrumentally a cause of that mystical participation whereby I make myself wholly theirs, so I give them in hand an actual possession of all such saving grace as my sacrificial body can yield, and as their souls do presently need, this is to them, and in them, my body" (Hooker, Eccl. Polity, book 5, p. 167). "The body of Christ is given, taken, and eaten in the supper only after a heavenly and spiritual manner. And the means whereby the body of Christ is received and eaten in the supper is faith" (Discipline, MethodistChurch, Art. 18).

Calvin agreed with Zwingli that the bread and wine are to be understood symbolically. Christ is not physically present in the elements, because His risen, glorified body is in heaven (Heb 10:12-13). Still, He is dynamically and spiritually present in the Lord's Supper through the Holy Spirit. In the worship service (but not at any one precise moment), when the Word of God is proclaimed and the Lord's Supper is received, the glorified Christ actually gives spiritual nourishment from His own glorified body to those who receive it. As bread nourishes the physical body, so Christ's glorified body enlivens the soul. Because of the organic union between Christ, the risen Head and the members of His body, the church (Eph 1:18-23; 4:15-16; 5:23), this nourishment is conveyed to Christians by the Spirit who dwells in them (Rom 8:9-11). Calvin admits that the way the Spirit does this is a genuine mystery. Yet, it is not contrary to reason-just above reason.

Comments: This is not at all clear. The problem with this view is that it clouds the teachings of Holy Communion to a higher degree. It states it is symbolic and yet it is not through the Spirit. ‘Jesus is not physically present but dynamically and spiritually present’ is contradictory. Spiritual presence is the work of the Holy Spirit and not the glorified body of Christ. The Communion is not an instrument for the participation of the body and blood. It is the actual body and blood of Christ after consecration.

The TJC’s view - Spiritualization:

Before consecration the bread and cup (juice) remain what they are. After the consecration, physically they still remain what they are. But in the Spirit, they are the body and the blood of Jesus. The unique difference between the TJC’s view and those of others stems from the understanding of the work of the Holy Spirit. “It is the Spirit who gives life; the flesh profits nothing. The word that I speak to you is Spirit and life” (Jn 6:63). It is the Spirit that makes the difference. If we believe and follow exactly what the Bibles teaches, we allow the Spirit to work and thus in this case giving us life through the participation of the Holy Communion. This can be further explained with the example of baptism: at baptism the water remains physically as water but with the presence of the Holy Spirit, blood is availed for the forgiveness of sins in the water, when the baptismal mode is adhered to.

Was the “Fruit of the Vine” Fermented?

by Wayne Jackson
Christian Courier: Questions
Tuesday, July 11, 2000

What should be the nature of the ‘fruit of the vine’ used during the Lord’s supper?

“In our country, it has been the custom to use wine in the Lord’s supper. A visitor from America suggests that we ought to use only grape juice. What did Jesus use when he instituted the communion at the Passover?”

As to the nature of the “fruit of the vine,” employed during the Passover supper, the New Testament (Mt. 26:26-29, et al) itself is not explicit in its definition of the expression. Linguistically, it could denote grape juice, or, on the other hand, what we commonly call “wine” (with some degree of fermentation). Some contend that it must have been “wine” since, at the time of the Passover feast in the spring, grapes were not yet ripe; and, as there was no way of preserving fresh juice, the substance used by the Lord must have been fermented.

But that argument is not conclusive, because it is known, from ancient sources, that there were ways of preserving juice, thus preventing fermentation.The ancient Roman statesman, Cato, said: “If you wish to have must [grape-juice] all year, put grape-juice in an amphora and seal the cork with pitch; sink it in a fishpond. After 30 days take it out. It will be grape-juice for a whole year” (De Agri Cultura CXX).

On the other hand, there is considerable historical evidence that the common Passover beverage used by the Jews in the first century was “wine.” Dr. Jack Lewis states that: “Wine was ordinarily used at the Passover and is called ‘fruit of the vine’ in Berakoth 6:1” (Commentary on Matthew, Austin, TX: Sweet, 1976, Vol. II, p. 147). For an extended discussion of this, see John Lightfoot, A Commentary on the New Testament From The Talmud And Hebraica,Grand Rapids: Baker, 1979, Vol. 2, pp. 346ff. This does not prove that Jesus used “wine,” but it might be considered a presumption in that direction.

It should be noted in passing, however, that the “wine” of the first century, though containing a degree of fermentation, did not have nearly the potency that modern wines possess. Note the following quote from Professor R. Laird Harris:

“All the wine [of Bible times] was light wine, i.e., not fortified with extra alcohol. Concentrated alcohol was only known in the Middle Ages when the Arabs invented distillation (‘alcohol’ is an Arabic word) so what is now called liquor or strong drink (i.e., whiskey, gin, etc.) and the twenty per cent fortified wines were unknown in Bible times. Beer was brewed by various methods, but its alcoholic content was light. The strength of natural wines is limited by two factors. The percentage of alcohol will be half of the percentage of the sugar in the juice. And if the alcoholic content is much above 10 or 11 percent, the yeast cells are killed and fermentation ceases. Probably ancient wines were 7-10 per cent . . .To avoid the sin of drunkenness, mingling of wine with water was practiced. This dilution was specified by the Rabbis in NT times for the wine customary at Passover” (Theological Wordbook of the Old Testament, Chicago: Moody, 1980, Vol. I, p. 376).

Expediency, therefore, might be the prevailing factor in the case posed. If both grape juice and wine were available, grape juice, one would think, would be the wiser choice. It would avoid the appearance of evil, perhaps be less offensive (an occasion of stumbling), and not be an avenue to temptation in some (who might have a weakness for strong drink).

It might be mentioned also that in some regions where grape juice is not readily accessible, wine could be used, but boiled first, so as to destroy any alcoholic content. In the final analysis, this issue is not one that should be pressed as a matter of doctrine and fellowship.