Tuesday, March 29, 2011
One of the commands we read about in the Bible is the command owe nothing to anyone except to love them. This is because there is no way to discharge, or end your love for your fellow believers (or for non-Christians for that matter). But loving one another is not easy when we realize that we are all in the same sinful boat together. We sin. We make mistakes. We are immature. We don’t do all that we should for one another. We insult one another. We have thin skins and are insulted when no insult was intended. But the command remains and there is no end to it.
There is a way that we can stop owing things to other people, but never love. We will always owe it. And it isn’t a pay back sort of thing either. We are not commanded to love one another if they’ve loved us first. We are to love each other as if they never loved us. The text says we owe it to them.
The text also goes on to say that the love we show for one another is something that fulfills the law. When we take all that God expects of us with regard to how we treat one another, it is all summed up in love one another. In fact the Bible thinks so strongly about this that is also says that non-Christians will know that we are followers of Jesus by our love for one another.
What does all of this have to do with the Lord’s Supper, you ask? We are here eating the body and drinking the blood of Christ because the text also says to put on Christ (v. 14). Of course we are mixing our metaphors here but what we need to know is that our participation in the Lord’s Supper is to participate in Christ himself. When we eat and drink, we are eating him, becoming him, putting him on, becoming like him, showing him, and proclaiming him. It is in participating in the Lord’s Supper that we are given the nourishment, the power, the ability, the desire to love one another, as Peter says, “from the heart.”