This message is a special Communion message. Pastor Miles wanted to take this Sunday to slow down and reflect.
Pastor Miles welcomes special guest: Dena Hamama. She is interviewing Pastor Miles through this message about communion. This message will prepare our hearts to receive communion.
Dena is introduced as the Rock Church Creative Director. Her parents are from Baghdad, Iraq, so her family is Chaldean. She is a first generation born in America. The Third Option has helped her in her relationship with her parents and family. She worked in the film industry in LA for 11 years. God called her to San Diego and brought her to Rock Church to serve this community by using her gifts here.
This message will reflect on Luke 22.
Jesus has been walking with his disciples for 3 years. He’s preparing them by reminding them of the past. Jesus says that He’s getting ready to leave. And in preparation for His leaving, they need to remember what God has done, they need to understand what they are committing to, and then they need to make a commitment.
Pastor Miles encourages us to allow the Holy Spirit to prepare us for the commitment we are making, and not just going through a religious exercise, but to re-up our commitment, to God, to the church, etc.
Then came the day of Unleavened Bread on which the Passover lamb had to be sacrificed.8 Jesus sent Peter and John, saying, “Go and make preparations for us to eat the Passover.”
9 “Where do you want us to prepare for it?” they asked.
10 He replied, “As you enter the city, a man carrying a jar of water will meet you. Follow him to the house that he enters, 11 and say to the owner of the house, ‘The Teacher asks: Where is the guest room, where I may eat the Passover with my disciples?’ 12 He will show you a large room upstairs, all furnished. Make preparations there.”
13 They left and found things just as Jesus had told them. So they prepared the Passover.
14 When the hour came, Jesus and his apostles reclined at the table. 15 And he said to them, “I have eagerly desired to eat this Passover with you before I suffer. 16 For I tell you, I will not eat it again until it finds fulfillment in the kingdom of God.”
17 After taking the cup, he gave thanks and said, “Take this and divide it among you. 18 For I tell you I will not drink again from the fruit of the vine until the kingdom of God comes.”
19 And he took bread, gave thanks and broke it, and gave it to them, saying, “This is my body given for you; do this in remembrance of me.”
20 In the same way, after the supper he took the cup, saying, “This cup is the new covenant in my blood, which is poured out for you. 21 But the hand of him who is going to betray me is with mine on the table. 22 The Son of Man will go as it has been decreed. But woe to that man who betrays him!” 23 They began to question among themselves which of them it might be who would do this. Luke 22:7-23
1. Remembering the Past – God’s mighty works
Dena asks, “What is it that you want to challenge the congregation to remember from this first half of the year?”
Pastor Miles: He references the Jews in Egypt and the Passover. So they would remember, every year, about what God had done to deliver them. He asks us if any of us remember a miracle God has done in our life. A lot of times, we forget about these miracles because life is just going so fast. We need to pause and reflect.
One of the sermons earlier this year was “Dialed In," where we declared, listened, and asked.
The next series was “God’s Presence.” Being in God’s presence is about being in God’s face.
Then it was the Easter service, “Jesus at His Best.” His best was when He died for sinners. He wants to be at His best through you so you can bless others.
“Mind Your Business” was a series which was about changing our negative thinking cycles so that we can be about our Father’s business. Pastor Miles references getting rid of our ANTS (Automatic Negative Thoughts). For more on this, view the Mind Your Business series.
The most recent series was “The Third Option” which entailed honoring the image of God in others.
2. Understanding the Future – Making disciples
Dena asks, “ We want to understand the future and making disciples. At the end of the Last Supper, Jesus charges them with something very specific. Tell us about that.”
Pastor Miles: He turns to Luke 22:15. Passover is celebrated to remind the Jews of what God has done. Jesus is telling them that He wants to remind them of what has happened, but He wants to prepare them for what is to come. He wants to prepare them for the future because they were in it for the long haul.
When we take communion here, we are making a commitment to God our Lord, but also to what God is doing here, at this church. Communion reminds us of the commitment He made to us, and the commitment we need to make to Him.
The future is that in November, we are going to have an ALL IN series where it will be a series of gratitude and learning about the power of saying, “Thank You.”
Dena: You’ve been discipled and poured into. Do you want to talk about that?
Pastor Miles: I have multiple people that I go to on a regular basis to get wisdom on spiritual things: walking with God. I have people I go to to help me lead better and how to be more organized, etc. There is no way anybody can do what they do by themselves. We are not supposed to do life by ourselves. We need people in our lives to help us in every aspect of our lives: in marriage, in business, in ministry, etc.
In the area of discipleship, get somebody that can pour into you, and that you get somebody that you pour into. Then you do it for a certain amount of time and then you multiply.
Discipleship is for everybody.
3. Commitment to the Cause – Communion
Dena: Why is Judas in this story? Why is there a betrayer? Why is there someone that is the opposition?
Pastor Miles: Luke 22:20, But behold, the hand of my betrayer is at the table. Have you ever wondered why Judas was at the table? He was saying, “If I had a Judas, you will have a Judas too. But you, don’t be that Judas.” We need to think if we are being faithful to what God has called us to do. Am I doing what I am supposed to be doing?
Pastor Miles asks himself, am I betraying what God has called me to do? Are there any areas in my life that I’m not doing what I’m supposed to be doing with my time? My money? Etc.
We cannot fulfill what God has called all of us to do if we all don’t do the part that God has called us to do. Are you in an rGroup? Are you serving? Are you attending?
As we take communion, think: God has blessed me in the past, He has some amazing things for me in the future, and I don’t want to be a Judas. I want to be faithful to what He has called me to do and be.
The service ends with the congregation taking communion.