John Hagee - The Contents Of The Cup
The Holy Communion was God's direct revelation to saint Paul for the church. Saint Paul didn't get a bright idea. This is an idea that came straight from heaven. 1 Corinthians 11:23, "For I have received from the Lord that which I delivered unto you".
The Holy Communion is an illustrated sermon in two parts. The first part looks at the death of Christ on the cross for your sins. And if that were the only part, it would make the message of the cross the greatest message on the planet, because the only way that you will ever be forgiven is through the blood of Jesus Christ. You cannot forgiven by your good acts, and your good deeds, or going do church. Joining the church doesn't save you. It may help you but it doesn't save you. The thing that saves you is the blood of Jesus Christ that cleanses from all sin. Nothing but the blood! Give the Lord praise!
Secondly, this looks forward to the second coming of Jesus Christ as King of kings and Lord of lords. He said, "When I drink this new with you in my kingdom". There is coming a kingdom and it's going to happen very soon, when king Jesus is going to return to Jerusalem. And he's going to plant his feet on the Mount of Olives. It will split in half, and he will walk to the throne of his father David, and sit there on the Temple Mount. And he will establish a kingdom that shall never end! And you are going to be a part of that eternal kingdom. We will have the Holy Communion again when the king comes back! Give him praise and glory in the house!
"And when he had given thanks..." say that with me. "And when he had given thanks..." Notice this: that Jesus gave thanks the night that he was living in the shadow of the cross. He was about to be crucified by the Romans, which is the most brutal form of death the world could ever have. They were masters of brutality. And he gave thanks.
He gave thanks when he broke bread and he fed 5.000 people in his ministry in the loaves and the fishes. He gave thanks when he was standing outside the tomb of Lazarus. And he said, "Father, I thank you that you have heard me". And a dead man got up and walked out of his grave! He gave thanks, as the Roman government was about to execute him as an insurrectionist too dangerous to live. He gave thanks when the church was calling him a heretic, and a drunkard, and someone who was a liar. He gave thanks on the same night that Judas betrayed him and Peter denied him three times.
The point is the spirit of thanksgiving releases the miracle-working power of God. Are you going through a difficult trial? Are you going through the darkest valley of your life? Are you going through a storm, a crisis? "Be thankful unto him and bless his name: for the Lord is good and his mercy endureth forever". Find yourself a place of prayer, and thank God, and watch the victory develop in your life! Give the Lord a tribute of praise in this house!
Verse 24, and he broke bread and he said, "This is my body broken for you". Awesome, awesome statement. The communion is a memorial meal celebrating Christ' victory on the cross for you. Victory over what? Victory over death, over hell, and over the grave. Christ' death and resurrection guarantee our eternal life. "Because he lives, we shall also live". There is a place called heaven. It's a very real place. And we are all one heartbeat away from being there.
I always get amused, and maybe it's just a little bit of my weird nature, when people sing "When we all get to heaven" with such enthusiasm. And then the doctor tells them they're going to heaven, and they start getting everybody they know to pray they won't go to heaven. Think about heaven. You must understand you have to die to get there. Won't it be wonderful there? We're all going there! Get ready!
Christ' victory on the cross is a guarantee of our victory over death, hell, and the grave! Satan is a defeated foe! He is a defeated! He was crushed at the cross of Calvary! The seed of the woman has crushed the head of satan! He cannot touch you! He cannot control you! He can manipulate you! You are the victor, in Jesus' name! Give him praise in the house of God!
Jesus says, "As often as you do this, do it in remembrance of me". Say it. "Do it in remembrance of me". Remembrance in the Jewish culture is a very big thing. Gentiles forget something in a decade. The Jewish people are still remembering the destruction of the second temple that happened over 2.000 years ago. They have a day of mourning for it. They remember things. Jesus said, "As often as you do this, do it in remembrance of me".
Remembrance is an act of righteousness. Remember the night in Gethsemane when the Roman soldiers came to arrest me, when Judas betrayed me. Remember the Roman whip that sliced my back and ripped it apart with 39 stripes. "For by his stripes, we are healed". Remember my blood that was shed on Calvary for your redemption. "For without the shedding of blood, there is no remission of sin". Remember the promises of God, because the provisions of the Lord are in the promises of God. Write that down.
The provisions of the Lord are in the promises of God. He has promised to be your healer: therefore, he is your healer! He has promised to be your provider: therefore, he is your provider! He is your shepherd! He is your guide! He is your defender! He is the source of your hope! He is your Savior! He is your soon-coming king! Hallelujah to the Lamb of God! Give him praise in the house!
Consider the contents of the cup at the Lord's supper in the upper room. The disciples were sitting closely together. The single cup reminds us that we are united in the body of Christ. We are one body. We have one baptism. There is one Savior. There is one faith. There is one church, the church of Jesus Christ. I want you to listen to that very closely. That means the Holy Communion instantly conquers racism, sexism, materialism, and denominationalism.
That deserves an hour of preaching. But let me just emphasize this for just a moment. When you lift this cup today, and you put it to your lips, and you take it, you say, "I am the brother and sister of every person, not just in this church, not just in every church in this city. But every church in the world, who lifts this cup, you are brothers and sisters to those people". They are our family, the family of God.
Jesus Christ gave, to the followers, the sign of the covenant of the Lord's supper, the sign of the blood and body of the new covenant. It's a covenant of faith. It's a covenant of the grace. "For by grace, are you saved through faith, and that not of yourself". It's a covenant of love. "God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten Son".
Do you know if the church in America would just love each other, just, just that one thing, we wouldn't be able to build the church big enough to hold the people who want to experience genuine love. We need to get over all of our pettiness and all of our silliness, and embrace the world in the love of Jesus Christ. That's the answer to evangelism! Let them see Jesus in you, not you, and you, and you: Jesus in you, the hope of glory! Give the Lord praise!
The contents of the cup brings a threefold healing. First, there is healing for the emotional man. Isaiah 53:4, "Surely he has borne our griefs and carried our sorrows". Looking at those two words "Borne" and "Carried". It means he took your grief and sorrow and carried them away, as the sacrificial lamb was cast over the edge of the cliff. He didn't just say, oh, oh, it's a terrible thing. He did something substantively. The thing that you are allowing to drive you into the ground, Christ conquered it. You have to accept that victory that he has given to you, our griefs and our sorrow.
Here are seven deadly emotions that satan sends to destroy people. One is resentment. Something has happened in your past that you just simply cannot get over. Bitterness, something that's in your mind that may have happened to you 20 years ago, but you still rehearse it. Unforgiveness, unforgiveness will keep you out of heaven. God said, "If you don't forgive another person, I won't forgive you".
The fear of the future, why should you fear the future when you're destined to go to glory? The guilt of the past, satan comes and taps you on the shoulder and reminds you of that dark chapter that happened to you. If you've confessed your sin and you've forsaken your sin, that sin has been rubbed out of your record in the books of heaven, and you are as pure as the blood of Jesus Christ can make you.
When you drink the cup and take the Holy Communion, you are drinking and eating to your divine health, to your emotional health, and to forgiveness of your sin. Nothing else in the world is quite like the communion. The history of the Holy Communion begins at passover. Exodus 12:7, "And they shall take some of the blood and put it on the doorpost and on the lintel of the house where they eat it. And they shall eat the flesh of that night, roasted with fire. With unleavened bread and with bitter herb, shall they eat it".
First, the lamb's blood brought supernatural protection against the angel of death that came at midnight to every house in Egypt. Every house in Egypt that did not have blood over the doorpost, God took the firstborn in that family by death. There was weeping from one end of Egypt to the other, because the power of the blood in Egypt that day and the power of the blood in San Antonio this day is the same power that will protect you from everything that satan throws at you. You are circumvented by the bloodline that is around your life, around your soul, around your family. What can wash away my sin? Nothing but the blood of Jesus. The power is in the blood!
Secondly, the slain lamb was to be eaten, including the main organs of the lamb's body. Think about that. Just as the lamb's blood brought protection from death, eating the lamb's body brought supernatural health. The next morning the entire nation of Israel, approximately a million and a half or more people, came out of Egypt saved by the blood, and healed, and were not sick for 40 years. Think about that. That beats any government health program you ever heard about.
Psalm 105:37, "He brought them forth", meaning he took them out of Egypt, "And also with silver and gold, and there was not one feeble person among their tribes". For those of you who are looking for a Bible verse to prove that, Psalm 105:37. The fact that Israel ate in the passover, bought healing and divine health in one night to their bodies.
There is a procedure done in Europe called "Cell therapy". Years ago, a doctor in Europe discovered that if you take the fetus of a lamb. And the cells of the organ of the lamb can be used in the helping of human beings. For instance, the heart of the lamb is liquefied and mixed with saline solution. Then it's injected into the heart of the patient with certain heart problems. These cells of the lamb actually assist in the replacing of the bad cells in the human heart and helps them recover their health quickly.
Notice in the passover, the Jews were ordered, in Exodus 12, to eat the organs of the lamb. Now I never connected those two things in all of my life. Why? Could it be that the Jewish person, who had heart trouble, was literally consuming health for his body? Fast forward to the New Testament. John 6, Jesus said, "I am the bread of life". Say that with me. "I am the bread of life". Pointing to himself, he said, "This is the bread that comes from heaven that a man may eat thereof and not die. I am the living bread, which came down from heaven. And if any man eats of this bread, he shall live forever". Think about that.
Go with me now to the upper room. Jesus and the 12 have gathered to celebrate passover, as Jews have done for 4.000 years. Listen to his words in Luke 22. "And he took the bread". It was probably a much smaller loaf than this one: I'm sure. "And he took the bread, and gave thanks. And he broke it, and he gave it to each of them".
One thing that's left out here: that Jesus was an orthodox Jew and he very likely sprinkled this with salt. If you've ever seen rabbi scheinberg do this ceremony, he always has a salt shaker. Why? Because in the Old Testament that Christians no longer read, salt is a symbol of the covenant. Salt is called "The covenant of salt", in the Old Testament. So he's saying we're eating this bread as a covenant with God. "Likewise, also the cup after the supper, saying, 'this cup is my blood, which is shed for you.'"
Now is it literally or not the blood? Is it literally the blood or not? The answer is no, because, one, Jesus kept the law of Moses and he was forbidden to even touch something dead. Because Jesus spoke in parables, on one occasion Jesus spoke of destroying the temple in three days, and he would build it again, in Matthew 26:61. The government thought he was talking about destroying what it had taken Israel 64 years to build, the temple. Jesus was talking about his body and raising it on the third day. The pharisees twisted the intent of Christ' statement, saying he would destroy Herod's temple, and it caused a social riot. How can he do that?
Jesus said on another occasion, "I am the true vine". His point is, I am the source of spiritual life. Stay plugged into me and you're going to grow. He did not mean he was a plant or you are. Because of history of passover, because of Isaiah 53, because of the power of atonement at the cross, we can say, communion holds the key to walking in supernatural health and deliverance for the body, for the mind, and for the spirit. It is a miracle meal. And if it's taken worthily, and experience divine healed, you will do that, because a living God has given to us the bread of life. He is that bread of life. And those who partake of it shall have supernatural health, supernatural peace, supernatural provision, because he is a supernatural God! Give him praise in the house!
Lastly, in closing, the communion taken unworthily and unreverently can kill you. That's serious. Saint Paul writes, in 1 Corinthians 11:26, "Wherefore, whoever shall eat this bread and drink of this cup of the Lord unworthily, shall be guilty of the body and the blood of Jesus Christ. But let a man/woman examine himself: for he that eateth and drinketh unworthily, eateth and drinketh damnation to himself, not discerning the Lord's body. For this cause, many are weak and sickly among you, and some sleep". "Sleep" means death.
Many are weak, sickly, and some are dead because they have abused the Holy Communion. What were they doing? They were getting drunk at communion. They did this in the Corinthian church. Paul wrote a letter that took the shirt off their back about that. And they stopped it. They repented. As you take the Holy Communion today and remember that it is a healing force in your body.
My mother, at the age of 90, I asked her, "Mom, you have wonderful health. You're 90 years of age. What's the reason"? She said without hesitation, "It's the healing power of the Holy Communion". I let that go right over my head. And then I began to think about that. She lived to be 99 years of age, minus 30 days. But she always, as long as her mind was normal, she always took that communion because of its supernatural impact.
As you take the Holy Communion today and every Lord's day, remember this threefold purpose. One, examine your life to see if you be of the faith. Do I obey God's commandments? Am I doing my will or his will? If you're doing your will, and you're rebelling against the law of God, you need to get that straightened out in a prayer before you take this communion. Make sure there's no hidden sin in your heart. It may be hidden to the church, but it's not hidden from God. Make sure that you're in a proper relationship with the body of Christ.
How many of you today need a healing in your emotions, in your body, or a spiritual healing in the forgiveness of sin? Let me see your hands right where you are. Will you all please stand? Please stand. Music I want to pray with you and I want you to repeat this prayer, word for word, after me.
Heavenly Father, in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ, I ask you to forgive me for every sin I have committed. May the blood of Jesus Christ be applied to the door post of my soul: that I might be totally redeemed by the shed blood of Jesus Christ. Heavenly Father, I ask you for my emotional healing. You know the things that are tormenting me. And I'm asking you to deliver me now from the torment of the mind, of things that are in my past. You know, Heavenly Father, the healing I need in my physical body. Today as I receive this Holy Communion, let your healing power surge through my body. In Jesus' name, in faith believing, I receive it. Amen.
Saint Matthew records, and as they were eating, Jesus took the bread. He blessed it. And he broke it. And he gave it to the disciples and said, "Take and eat it. This is my body". Can we take the symbol of the body of Christ.
Then he took the cup and gave thanks, and gave it to them, saying, "Drink ye all of it". Can we take the contents of the cup.
"For this is my blood of the new covenant, which is shed for many for the remission of sins. But I say to you I will not drink of this fruit of the vine from now on until that day when I drink it new with you in my father's kingdom". And when they had sung a hymn, they went out to the Mount of Olives". And the crucifixion process began. And my redemption and yours was paid for by the precious blood of the Lamb of God, Jesus Christ of Nazareth, that takes away the sins of the world. Bless his holy name. Bless his holy name.