God commands Christians to partake in the Lord’s Supper every first day of the week through the disciples’ example set in Acts 20:7; “And upon the first day of the week, when the disciples came together to break bread, Paul preached unto them, ready to depart on the morrow; and continued his speech until midnight.” This verse shows the requirement by God for Christians to worship Him every Sunday, as well as sets the example to partake of the Lord’s Supper every Sunday. The disciples set the example of doing both of these actions. There is no explicit reason given in the Bible for missing Sunday services, however, God is very merciful, and He understands if a Christian stays home from worship services due to sickness or taking care of someone who is sick. “But God, who is rich in mercy, for his great love wherewith he loved us,” (Ephesians 2:4).
The purpose of the Lord’s Supper is to memorialize Jesus’ death on the cross for remission of our sins. The Bible talks about the Lord’s Supper in Acts 20:7 as quoted above. Jesus also gave the example of the Lord’s Supper in 1 Corinthians 11:24-26; “And when he had given thanks, he brake it, and said, Take, eat: this is my body, which is broken for you: this do in remembrance of me.” (v. 24). “After the same manner also he took the cup, when he had supped, saying, This cup is the new testament in my blood: this do ye, as oft as ye drink it, in remembrance of me.” (v. 25). “For as often as ye eat this bread, and drink this cup, ye do shew the Lord's death till he come” (v. 26). The bread represents Jesus’ body which was broken on the cross, and the wine represents His blood that was shed on the cross.
The bread taken in the Lord’s Supper is unleavened bread, meaning there is no yeast in it. The use of unleavened bread began with the Passover (Mark 14:12; Luke 22:7; Luke 22:1). Alcoholic wine itself is not used in the Lord’s Supper because, remember, that during Jesus’ life on the earth, He was under the Old Law. It was not until He was crucified that the Old Law was nailed to the cross (Colossians 2:14). Christ fulfilled the Old Law perfectly (Matthew 5:17-18; Hebrews 4:15), therefore He fulfilled Proverbs 23:31, which says, “Look not thou upon the wine when it is red, when it giveth his colour in the cup, when it moveth itself aright.” This means that when He instituted the Lord’s Supper, He would have used grape juice, not alcoholic wine, thereby showing us what we are to use today in the Lord’s Supper, and that is unfermented grape juice (I Peter 2:21, Ephesians 5:18).
When we take the Lord’s Supper, we should do so with the mindset of remembrance of Jesus’ death, and we should spend this time thinking upon this subject. We should be ever thankful that God gave His Son to die on the cross for us, and we should especially give thanks for this during the Lord’s Supper. That means that while the Lord’s Supper is taking place, we should not be thinking about what we are going to eat after worship services are over, or we should not be doing something else while this very important part of the worship service is taking place. Our minds should be focused on the Cross and not on earthly matters at this time.
Worshipping God and partaking of the Lord’s Supper is mandatory on the first day of the week. Everyone is commanded to do both of these things on Sunday unless he or she is sick or taking care of someone who is sick. Work and inclement weather should not keep us from worshipping God and taking the Lord’s Supper on Sunday. I know that when I was working in retail, I always asked off during church services. I know that worshipping God is much more important than making money. I have seen people who put their jobs before worshipping God, and they lose their jobs.
Also, inclement weather should not keep us from attending church services, even if our home congregation cancels their services. God would never ask us to do something that we could not do. “I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me” (Philippians 4:13). If Jesus could hang on the cross for us, the least we can do for Him is get into our comfortable, heated vehicle to go church services. God understands if someone is physically unable to get out and drive in this type of weather, but for those who can get around, their time should be spent in worship. A family can have a worship service at their home on Sundays during inclement weather conditions if they have the supplies necessary to administer the Lord’s Supper. “For where two or three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them (Matthew 18:20). Although this verse primarily refers in context to when church discipline is being carried out, obviously the principle applies that in worship the Lord is with us. One cannot have Sunday worship service without also having the Lord’s Supper.
God is wonderful! We should work every day to be with Him in Paradise, and to be with Him in Heaven when the Day of Judgment comes! That means that we should do everything we can to be the best Christians we can be every day, and we should do everything we can to make sure we do not put earthly affairs ahead of worshipping Him. We should also make sure that we partake of the Lord’s Supper every first day of the week, no matter what the weather looks like or what our employers want us to do. The Devil will use any means he can to keep us from worshipping God, and we must not give in to him. May we always strive to help one another and to be examples to all of how God wants us to be! “Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.” (Matthew 5:16).