1 Corinthians 11:26
ESV - 26 For as often as you eat this bread and drink the cup, you proclaim the Lord's death until he comes.
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The way we conduct the religious rites and rituals provided for in the bible is not as important as the reasons why we do these things in our hearts. People look at what is on the outside and judge our performance. But God looks at our heart; are we seeking to worship him, to bring honour and glory and praise and thanksgiving for all that God has done for us. Every religious ritual prescribed in the bible is given by God to help us remember the great things he has done for us. To remember, to celebrate and to transform our lives. The church I attend uses a wafer for the bread - a gluten free one for those who need it, and a small plastic cup of grape juice instead of wine. Some Christian denominations practice communion once or twice a year, others do it every time there is a church service. We are not to judge their practices as long as they are bringing honour and glory to Jesus as they do so. The early church in Corinth had a huge problem with this religious rite. They gathered in house churches for their church service. They would arrive and have a fellowship meal together, then have a church service which included scripture readings, hymns and songs plus the communion service. The problem was that some people got drunk during the fellowship meal and they didn't wait for everyone to arrive and participate in the service. Some people were also harbouring sin in their lives while they took communion which resulted in God's judgement of sickness and death on some of them. We can read about this in 1 Corinthians 11:17-34. When I take the wafer I remember that Jesus is the bread of my spiritual life. My daily fellowship with him nourishes my faith and strengthens my service. When I take the cup of juice i remember that Jesus blood cleanses me from all sin. My daily confession to him cleanses me again and keeps my relationship with him pure and holy. I celebrate Jesus's death which paid the penalty for my sin and celebrate Jesus resurrection which gave me a new spiritual life. In my view, it's the belief in our hearts, and the form of our practice which brings honour and glory to God, that is pleasing God.
If the question is referring to the practice of all communicants drinking from a common cup, my experience in the Lutheran denomination in which I was raised was to have the consecrated wine offered in a choice of taking it either from a common cup or individual one-use disposable cups that were held in a charger. The crucial elements, in my view, are the consecration of the contents of whatever vessel is used, as well as the communicant's belief concerning the nature of those contents as being the true blood of Christ, rather than anything about the nature of the cup itself.
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