This past Sunday I spoke for communion. We celebrate communion every other week at my church so it can some times be difficult to speak on something new…here’s what I said…
When we celebrate communion, we are celebrating the sacrifice that Jesus made for us through his death and resurrection. We aspire to have an understanding of what it cost Jesus, to ‘feel’ something of that sacrifice. But today I want to look at this celebration from a different direction. As Christians, it costs us something to be in relationship with Jesus, but what cost are we really willing to pay? How often do we offer something that costs us very little.
In 2 Samuel 24 King David is building an alter and needs a few supplies. He goes to see a man named Araunah who tells the King to take whatever he likes, and offers him some animals to sacrifice as well, and this is David’s reply in verse 24:
But the king replied to Araunah “No, I insist on paying you for it. I will not sacrifice to the Lord my God burnt offerings that cost me nothing.”
Are we sacrificing ‘burnt offerings’ to God that cost us nothing? Jesus sacrificed everything for us. In return are we offering him the very least of ourselves?
In saying all of this, when we talk about paying a price, it tends to have a negative connotation, but as we reflect on what our relationship with Jesus is costing us, I want to suggest that it is something to celebrate as much as we celebrate the sacrifice that Jesus made for us, and here is why.
Luke 6:38 says: Give and it will be given to you. A good measure, pressed down, shaken together and running over, will be poured into your lap.
When we give of ourselves to God – that – is how he gives back to us. So let’s stop and think about what we receive back when it costs us the bare minimum. When we do only just enough to become a Christian and no more...what do we receive? We get eternal life… how’s that for pressed down and shaken together. So now imagine what God could do with your life if you gave it fully over to Him.
Jesus said in John 10:10: I have come that they may have life and life to the full.
Not that we ‘will’ have life to the full but that we ‘may’. So today I want us all to ask ourselves one question...What else can it cost me?
As I was preparing for communion I thought I had better ask myself that question before I stand up here and ask you to. And at the time the answer was time. I had been really slack about spending enough time reading my bible and praying. And so when I found myself about to turn on the TV or get on the internet, I’d stop and pick up my bible. Even though I didn’t want to every time, it helped me to remember that it’s supposed to cost me something. So today, what does it need to cost you? Maybe it’s finances. You haven’t been paying tithes regularly and God is speaking to you about that, or it may go beyond that into giving as a lifestyle. Maybe it needs to cost you a boyfriend or girlfriend (I was going to say ‘non Christian’ but it can be a Christian who is keeping you from growing in your relationship with God as well). It might be a job or a career. Perhaps it’s security. God wants you to step out in faith and you are afraid. There is always something more we can give to God of ourselves.
I’m going to pray and then we will share communion, and as we continue to worship, take the time to ask God what else it needs to be costing you. And keep in mind this is not a once off thing. This is something we should be doing on a regular basis. Lets receive from Jesus the ‘life to the full’ that he has come to bring us.