ACCORDING TO THY GRACIOUS WORD
James Montgomery, 1771–1854
For whenever you eat this bread and drink this cup, you proclaim the Lord’s death until He comes. (1 Corinthians 11:26)
Here, O my Lord, I see Thee face to face; here would I touch and handle things unseen, here grasp with firmer hand eternal grace, and all my weariness upon Thee lean. Here would I feed upon the bread of God, here drink with Thee the royal wine of heav’n. Here would I lay aside each earthly load, here taste afresh the calm of sin forgiv’n.
In His sovereign wisdom our Lord knew that His followers through the centuries would need a continual reminder of the essential truths of their faith—the sacrificial death, the triumphant resurrection, and the victorious return of Christ. For His disciples, Christ shared the Last Supper and introduced the signs of the new covenant—His broken body and shed blood—symbolized by the bread and the cup. With this supper as the model, He then gave instructions that this feast of remembrance should occur regularly in our worship of Him until He comes. After that, it will culminate in heaven with the saints of the ages in the Wedding Supper of the Lamb (Revelation 19:7, 9). Not only should the communion service serve as a backward and forward reminder of what Christ has and will do for us, but it should also cause us to look within ourselves —“A man ought to examine himself before he eats of the bread and drinks of the cup” (1 Corinthians 11:28).
“According to Thy Gracious Word” by James Montgomery recounts vividly the sacrificial atonement of Christ and the believer’s response to Christ’s command in Luke 22:19—“This do in remembrance of Me.”
According to Thy gracious word, in meek humility, this will I do, my dying Lord: I will remember Thee.
Thy body, broken for my sake, my bread from heav’n shall be; Thy testamental cup I take, and thus remember Thee.
When to the cross I turn mine eyes and rest on Calvary, O Lamb of God, my sacrifice, I must remember Thee—
Remember Thee and all Thy pains and all Thy love to me; yea, while a breath, a pulse remains will I remember Thee.
And when these failing lips grow dumb and mind and mem’ry flee, when you shalt in Thy kingdom come, Jesus, remember me!
For Today: Matthew 26:26–29; 1 Corinthians 10:16–21; 11:23–28
Reflect on this: Am I truly willing to take the backward, forward, and inward looks as I anticipate the next Communion Service? Use this musical reminder to help—
Osbeck, K. W.
- And as they did eat, Jesus took the bread and when he had blessed, he brake it, and gave it to the disciples, and said, Take, eat: this is my body. Also he took the cup, and when he had given thanks, he gave it them, saying, Drink ye all of it. For this is my blood of the new Testament that is shed for many, for the remission of sins. I say unto you that I will not drink henceforth of this fruit of the vine until that day, when I shall drink it new with you in my Father’s kingdom. Matthew 26:26–29
- The cup of blessing which we bless, is it not the communion of the blood of Christ? The bread which we break, is it not the communion of the body of Christ? For we that are many, are one bread and one body, because we all are partakers of one bread. Behold Israel, which is after the flesh: are not they which eat of the sacrifices partakers of the Altar? What say I then? that the idol is anything? or that that which is sacrificed to idols, is anything? Nay, but that the things which the Gentiles sacrifice, they sacrifice to devils, and not unto God: and I would not that ye should have fellowship with the devils. Ye cannot drink the cup of the Lord, and the cup of the devils. Ye cannot be partakers of the Lord’s table, and of the table of the devils. 1 Corinthians 10:16–21
- For I have received of the Lord that which I also have delivered unto you, to wit, That the Lord Jesus in the night when he was betrayed, took bread. And when he had given thanks, he brake it, and said, Take, eat: this is my body, which is broken for you: this do ye in remembrance of me. 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 as oft as ye drink it, in remembrance of me. For as often as ye shall eat this bread, and drink this cup, ye show the Lord’s death till he come. Wherefore, whosoever shall eat this bread, and drink the cup of the Lord unworthily, shall be guilty of the body and blood of the Lord. 1 Corinthians 11:23-28