As God has been gracious to grant many of us a greater appreciation for the Biblical foundations of formal worship and the gift of the sacraments of baptism and the Lordís Supper, itís important that we keep our priorities straight. Two of the gifts the Lord has given us in this meal in particular have been the opportunity to welcome our baptized children to share this meal with us, and our custom of celebrating this meal together every week. If youíve come from a different church background or visited other churches on vacation, you know that not everyone celebrates like we do. Historically, reformed churches have not welcomed children to this table until they were able to make a mature profession of faith in Jesus for themselves. And this meal was often only celebrated once a quarter or once a month. While I believe we should rejoice in what God has given us here, we should not misunderstand how†we are to receive this.
And what I mean is this: Standing firmly in the Reformed tradition means that we understand the faithful preaching and application of Godís Word found in the Bible is the most important thing. This faithful preaching should lead to a joyful, faithful celebration of the sacraments. But we do not want to drift into thinking that these additional blessings that we treasure are†the center. The center is knowing Jesus and walking with Him by faith through hearing and obeying His Word. You donít ever want to find yourself contemplating going to a church where youíre not sure if they actually believe the Bible but at least they have weekly communion. Thatís completely backwards.
So let me encourage you here to make sure you are talking with your children about these things. They will understandably be most excited about the bread and the wine, and it is here for them. But as you teach them, remind them that they are welcome here because Jesus has welcomed them in His Word. We hear His word, believe His word, obey His Word, and in so doing, we find a glorious feast spread for us and for our children.
Photo by Hal Gatewood on Unsplash
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