What are the most memorable events in your life? What are the things you remember above everything else? For me, it's important dates: my son and daughter’s birthday, my anniversary. It's not the date that is so special but rather the event it celebrates. A date is just something we use as a placeholder in time to help us remember and commemorate important things in our lives. We typically commit to memory those really important things and rarely forget them; but haven't you had that moment though when you couldn’t remember something you knew so well? We say "it's right on the tip of my tongue," which really means we cannot remember that important thing that, in fact, we thought we knew so well. It usually helps to write things down we don't want to forget. Perhaps one of the many reasons God provides us his word is because we so easily forget things even though we consider them very important. His words were recorded so we could read them and remember what He said, the promises He has fulfilled and the wisdom He provides.
WHAT DID JESUS INSTRUCT US TO REMEMBER?
Jesus stated very clearly in Luke 22:19 that we are to remember Him, especially the sacrifice of His body and blood He made for our sins. The scene takes place in the upper room as Jesus explains to the disciples that He is going to die and rise again on the third day. In His last moments of life, He found it important to provide His disciples with a method by which to remember Him. He could have done anything in those last moments. He could have performed outstanding miracles, taught a new lesson, gave them nuggets of wisdom to live by or simply went to sleep. Instead, He instituted Communion; something we do to remember Him. During Communion with Jesus we share in His body and blood and thank Him for who he was and what he did.
WHY TELL US TO REMEMBER?
Surely the disciples knew Jesus was important and should be remembered, so why did Jesus specifically say to remember the moment of Communion and His sacrifice? He knew we would forget. Maybe He knew we would want to focus on His great teachings and try to live according to those standards. Maybe He knew we would focus on His healing and miracles. Maybe He knew we would focus on His wisdom and apply that to our lives. There is nothing wrong with any of those attributes of Jesus, but what is most important is the reason He came: to offer Himself as the sacrifice for our sins, restoring our relationship with God so we could dwell with Him for eternity. His teachings, healing and wisdom apart from sacrifice don't save. HE is the ONE that saves! We remember Him and His victory above all else.
HOW DO WE REMEMBER?
Even though we know Jesus made an important sacrifice and that we should remember, we then have to ask: How do we remember? We remember by telling others. We remember by taking Communion together as a church body. We remember perhaps through songs. Songs have a powerful way of helping us remember important things. How many song lyrics can you recite, be they spiritual or secular? Can you repeat as many scriptures? Singing about Jesus and His sacrifice serves as a way to help us remember Him. Consider the chorus of the following two songs:
Victory in Jesus
Oh victory in Jesus,
My Savior, forever.
He sought me and bought me,
With His redeeming blood.
He loved me, ere I knew Him,
Now all my love is due Him,
He plunged me to victory,
Beneath the cleansing flood.
©1939 by E.M. Bartlet
One That Saves
You are the way, You are the life.
Jesus Christ, You are alive.
You are God, You are the one that Saves.
You are the hope, You are the grace,
You restore, You break our chains
You are God, You are the One That Saves.
Written by Aaron Lee and Ian Wooldridge, © 2015 by Cultivate Music
Let us remember what He did: He sacrificed Himself on the cross, providing victory over death as He was, and is, the only one capable of saving us!