St. John Lutheran Church
Come & See, Serve & Grow
It IS for YOU!
When we distribute the Sacrament of Holy Communion in Lutheran churches we often hear the words, "the body of Christ given for you. The blood of Christ shed for you."
Most may not realize that whenever those words are said we are actually making a very profound theological statement. Dr. Timothy Wengert points out that in the 16th century there was much controversy and debate surrounding the Sacrament of Holy Communion, what it was and who it was for.
Wengert asserts that when Lutherans say in the distribution "The Body of Christ...The Blood of Christ" it was a proclamation not just to the recipient, but also to Christians who didn't believe that it is our Lord's body and blood. Furthermore, when we say the words, "...given for you and...shed for you" it was a statement to the recipient, but also to Rome that tended to have people watch the worship service and not receive the sacrament or have one element (the wine) withheld from the people.
So in our liturgy we seek to be clear that this is the body and blood of Christ and it is for you!
This of course speaks to the Evangelical (Good News) character of the Lutheran church because at the Lord's table we are announcing that in this Sacrament Jesus is here for you!
Pastor Adam Sornchai