I sat in a communion service in church recently. You know, communion is when you eat a wafer or piece of bread, and drink wine or grape juice, in remembrance of the death of Jesus Christ. The thought came to mind that if it were not for the grace of God, not one single person sitting in church would make it to heaven. That is because entrance into heaven has nothing to do with being religious.
Every religion except Christianity has works as a basis for salvation. With Christianity, however, a person goes to heaven based upon what Jesus has already done. Salvation can only be received because of the sacrificial death of Jesus on the cross. He gave up his physical body, represented by the bread or wafer of communion, and shed his blood, represented by the wine or grape juice, of communion. Both Protestants and Catholics alike make this a vital part of their religious practice.
This also explains why the cross is the symbol of Christianity. It is the symbol of the greatest demonstration of love and redemption in the history of humanity. When Christ died upon the cross he defeated Satan. He made it possible for anyone who receives his act of grace through faith to experience eternal forgiveness, hope, and everlasting existence in his presence in heaven. The only requirement is that one admits that he or she is a sinner. Sin is not measured in acts of wrong doing or wrong thinking, but rather in terms of a life that sees no need for God. When there is a recognition that no one can live according to God’s standards of righteousness and calls upon his grace for redemption, the death of Jesus provides the solution. Jesus Christ, God in human flesh and the only sinless person who ever lived upon the earth, has justified all those who accept his free gift of salvation.
This is the big picture behind having a communion service. And this is why I said at the beginning that no one sitting in the church service would not be going to heaven without the grace of God. How about you? Next time you sit in church that is having a communion service, don’t partake unless you know you have experienced the forgiveness of God and accepted his grace. If you do, no matter how religious you may consider yourself to be, partaking in communion will not save you.