Keith Hunt - Passover Study #15 Restitution of All Things


                    PASSOVER
                 UNDERSTANDINGS
                   Part Ten(A)

              QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS
                ON 1 COR.11:20-34


     It will take more than one study to cover all the things
that need to be examined in this section of scripture. So let's
begin.

     Verse 20 and the phrase "When you come together" is often
explained, depending who is doing the explaining, as ONCE a day,
ONCE a week, ONCE a month, THREE or FOUR times a year, and other
various times, many or few.
     How can we know HOW MANY TIMES a year we are to observe the
memorial of our Lord's death that this section of the letter to
the Corinthian church is giving instructions upon?
     First, we need to acknowledge that the NT Greek did have
words that it used elsewhere for out English words of "day" -
"week" - "every Sabbath" - "each month" - "every three months" -
"two memorials a year"  etc.
     It would have been very easy for the Holy Spirit to have
inspired Paul to use such language here, IF God has wanted to
tell us that the memorial of our Savior's death was to be
observed MORE THAN ONCE a year. This would have been an excellent
place in the NT to have so instructed us. But Paul did not use
any such language, or Greek phrases as above. Verse 20 by itself
CANNOT prove anything about how often to observe the NT symbols
of Christ's death.
     Yet, we are not left completely in the dark regarding the
answer to our question. The CONTEXT must be taken into
consideration. They were as Paul knew COMING TOGETHER!  They were
meeting together as a group of people, in ONE place. They were
from the context pretending to observe the death of Jesus. Oh,
they were doing it WRONG and with MANY errors involved that Paul
corrected them on, but they were claiming to observe the Lord's
death, and Paul was talking about the observance of the memorial
of the Lord's death. All I believe agree on that point.

     Paul within this context, in verse 23, gives us the key as
to how many times a day, week, month, or year, he expected them
to observe this memorial. He had received it RIGHT FROM THE LORD
HIMSELF,  and which he had at one time before this letter was
written, INSTRUCTED THEM upon. It was the NIGHT that Jesus was
betrayed that the NT symbols were introduced for the NT
remembrance of Christ's death.

     We have seen in our past studies that THAT NIGHT was the
Passover night of the 14th of the first month. At the VERY
BEGINNING of the 14th, NOT the end of the day but the START of
the day, the NIGHT of the 14th. We have seen that the Gospels(all
of them) make this truth VERY CLEAR! And we have seen from the
Gospels of Matthew, Mark, and Luke, that is was indeed the
PASSOVER meal, the Passover supper meal, that Jesus with His
disciples DID OBSERVE!  We have seen they DID PREPARE AND EAT
IT THAT NIGHT OF THE 14TH!
     We can search the NT from front to back and we shall never
find ANY scripture to say that the ONCE A YEAR observation of the
Passover/True Lamb of God, memorial service, was ever CHANGED
from once a year celebration to more than once a year. We
can see from the Gospels and from this passage we are studying,
that the SYMBOLS were changed, that Jesus indeed changed it from
a supper meal to a simple bread and wine and foot washing
service, BUT the time of day and how many times a year it was
to be observed was NEVER changed.
     Some will immediately cry out verse 26 and the phrase "For
as OFTEN as you eat....." and say it can be observed as often we
like to observe it.  Well I shall come to that verse later with
some in depth comments and we shall see from the Greek, that is
not what it means. But in our next study for that.

     Back to verse 20 through to 22.  They were indeed coming
together to observe the Lord's death. It is clear from these
verses they were MAKING A LARGE MEAL of it. And what a mess they
were making of even that fact. Some who had much were bringing
their own meal, some who had little or even nothing could not
bring anything, and those who had much WOULD NOT EVEN SHARE with
those who had nothing! So some went hungry. Then add injury to
insult, some were drinking so much wine that they were literally
GETTING DRUNK!  
     They were DOING, ACTING, literally in a wrong manner.  I
want you to remember this, for we shall come back to it when I
comment on verse 27,29, in connection with observing "unworthily"
which has caused some misunderstanding in the minds of too
many sincere Christians. I will cover that in our next study.

WERE THEY TO EAT THE LORD'S SUPPER?  IS THIS SERVICE CALLED "THE
LORD'S SUPPER"?

     Here we have two questions. Both of them need to be
answered.

     We need to note the phrase as it is in the KJV "this is not
to eat the Lord's supper."
     In the Greek/English INTERLINEAR  by  Berry it reads
literally as: "IT IS NOT LORD'S SUPPER TO EAT."

     The   NEW AMERICAN STANDARD BIBLE also gives a true
translation from the Greek: "Therefore when you meet together, IT
IS NOT TO EAT THE LORD'S SUPPER."

     VERY FEW have really seen what Paul was saying here in this
verse to them. They were making a SUPPER meal of the NT memorial
service of Christ's death. Jesus on the last night that He
partook of the Passover/True Lamb of God, memorial service
DID EAT A MEAL. It was the Passover meal supper - roast lamb,
unleavened bread and bitter herbs. During that meal Jesus
introduced the NT symbols of His broken body and shed blood for
the New Covenant service, as Paul points out to the church at
Corinth in the section we are now studying.
     It was a MEAL that Jesus did observe on that NIGHT, but it
is clear from the Gospels by what Christ DID and TAUGHT, and by
what Paul(who said he was taught and instructed by Jesus) had
delivered to them beforehand(verse 23), IT WAS NO LONGER
TO BE A MEAL!!  It was to be BREAD and the CUP.  Doing THIS was
showing or remembering the Lord's death till He come(verses
24-28).
     Those were NOW the TWO basic parts and symbols to this
remembrance NIGHT service of Christ's death, to be observed on
the NIGHT in which Jesus was betrayed(verse 23).
     IT WAS NOT TO BE A MEAL!!  Hence Paul said: "Coming together
therefore you into one place, it is not Lord's supper to eat"
(Greek/English Interlinear by Berry).

     To even get into this still more from a technical point of
view I will quote at length from the book by Fred Coulter THE
CHRISTIAN PASSOVER, pages 211-213.

     Quote:

     ".......Paul begins by correcting the Corinthians for their
heretical observance of the Christian Passover...........As we
shall see, one of the heresies which had taken root in the
Corinthian church was the practice of calling the NT Passover the
'Lord's Supper.' The Corinthians had apparently adopted the
practice of eating the OT Passover meal in conjunction with the
NT Passover!  This heresy is still with us to this day!  People
commonly call the Christian Passover the 'Lord's supper,'  and
there are those who still celebrate it with a meal. However, 
Paul strictly forbids both such practices in no uncertain
terms........'Therefore, when you come together into one place,
it is not to eat the Lord's supper!'  (1 Cor.11:20, author's
translation - FC). Can anything be clearer?.......If they
were not to come together to eat the Lord's supper, then the NT
Passover should not be called the 'Lord's Supper'!

     This fact is made abundantly clear in the Greek text. Paul
used the Greek negative adverb ouk to emphasize that they were
'not to eat the Lord's Supper.'  The word ouk denotes the
IMPOSSIBILITY of eating the Lord's supper!  Ouk is ' an objective
negative adverb denying the reality of an alleged fact '  (Arndt
& Gingrich, Greek-English Lexicon of the New Testament).........

     Based upon this direct condemnation by the apostle Paul, the
NT Passover should never be called the ' Lord's Supper.'
............From the very tenor of Paul's rebuke, it is apparent
that this problem was not a minor misunderstanding. Paul's
writings are simple and plain. The NT Passover is not the Lord's
supper; therefore it should not be called the Lord's
Supper.............The NT Passover is not a meal. The NT
Passover is a solemn ceremony, not a festive meal..............To
end this gross misobservance, Paul made it clear that whatever
meals they desired to eat should be eaten at home before
assembling to partake of the NT Passover ceremony......(verse
22)..........Paul was not dealing with a single heresy, but
multiple heresies. In fact, the entire epistle of First
Corinthians addresses one heresy after another in Paul's attempt
to turn the Corinthians from these most unChristian
practices...........Jesus clearly nullified the observance of the
OT Passover with the introduction of the new symbols. The
footwashing and the new symbols of the unleavened bread and wine
have replaced the former paschal meal of the lamb and bitter
herbs. The ceremony and meaning were changed by Jesus Christ
Himself at His last Passover.  As the Son of God , He had the
authority to change it!  However the Passover day itself was not
changed. The Scriptures in both OT and NT show that it was and is
the 14th day of the 1st month............Paul had previously
taught the Corinthians the proper observance of the NT Passover,
but they apparently had decided that they could improve upon
those original instructions. The traditions of men are always
hailed as better than God's way. Heresy is always called an
'improvement'!  False doctrine is always touted as 'new
revelation.' .............Yes, the brethren at Corinth had been
taught the proper way to observe the NT Passover. Paul had
previously instructed them (1 Cor.11:23). They knew what was
right and good, but they were not doing it............As the
apostle James declared, ' Therefore, to the one who knows to do
good, and is not practicing it, TO HIM IT IS SIN ' (James 4:17,
author's translation - FC)............Can there be any higher
authority than the direct teachings of the Lord Jesus Christ? 
Absolutely not!..........."

     Fred Coulter then proceeds to quote Paul from verse 23-26.

     You will notice in those verses the phrase as it is in the
KJV, "in remembrance of me."  The Greek is even more SPECIFIC. 
There is the definite article "the" in the Greek.
It is: Tau as in tale. Eta as in obey. Nu as in no.  A three
letter word, that is translated MANY times in the NT as "the."

     So the Greek is: "....this do in THE remembrance of me." 
Then looking up the Greek word for "remembrance" in the
Analytical Greek Lexicon, page 24, we discover that the root to
this word means: remembrance; a commemoration; memorial.
     
     The OT Passover was actually God's true Lamb, that was slain
from the foundation of the world(in His Plan from the very
beginning). It was THE MEMORIAL of the death of the one who would
come to die for the sins of the whole world, for God so loved the
world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever
believes on Him should not perish, but have EVERLASTING LIFE!


     What a memorial!  It is THE MEMORIAL,  THE REMEMBRANCE 
NIGHT of the year.  No other night in the entire year is quite
like the NT PASSOVER NIGHT.  Let's never take it for granted. 
Let's observe it in the correct manner.  Let a man/woman EXAMINE
THEMSELVES and so let them eat of that bread and drink of that
cup(1 Cor.11:28).

     I will continue in this section next time. 

              ..........................

Written April 1997
by
Keith Hunt

 
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