1 Corinthians 11:17–34 (ESV)
The Lord’s Supper
in the following instructions I do not commend you, because when you come together it is not for the better but for the worse. 18 For, in the first place, when you come together as a church, I hear that there are divisions
among you. And I believe it in part, 19 for there must be factions among you in order that those who are genuine among you may be recognized. 20 When you come together, it is not the Lord’s
supper that you eat. 21 For in eating, each one goes ahead with his own meal. One goes hungry, another gets drunk. 22 What! Do you not have houses to eat and drink in? Or do you despise the
church of God and humiliate those who have nothing? What shall I say to you? Shall I commend you in this? No, I will not.
I received from the Lord what I also delivered to you, that the Lord Jesus on the night when he was betrayed took bread, 24 and when he had given thanks, he broke it, and said, “This is my body, which
is for you. Do this in remembrance of me.” 25 In the same way also he took the cup, after supper, saying, “This cup is the new covenant in my blood. Do this, as often as you drink it, in
remembrance of me.” 26 For as often as you eat this bread and drink the cup, you proclaim the Lord’s death until he comes.
27 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.
have turned the Sacrament into a supper of their own making. As a result, the community of believers formed by the Gospel and the Sacrament is being harmed and individuals are falling under God’s judgment. Recalling Christ’s own institution of
the Supper, Paul reminds the Corinthians to recognize what God has offered in the Sacrament: the body and blood of Christ, the forgiveness of sins, and through it the union of the Body of Christ, the Church, gathered around the altar. The Lord’s Supper
is never just a private matter, something only between God and oneself, but it is a celebration of the whole Body of Christ.
I pray: Forgive, O Lord, the dullness that
too frequently overcomes us as You draw us to Your Table. Remind us of the blessings of forgiveness and salvation You provide for us there. Send faithful pastors who will admonish our wrongs, remind us of Your love in Christ, and encourage us to receive the
forgiveness brought to us in Your Sacrament. Unite us in love and fellowship with those whom You have redeemed who join us at Your Table. Amen.
Edward A. Engelbrecht, The Lutheran Study Bible (St. Louis, MO: Concordia Publishing House, 2009), 1964–1966.