As I was filling the tiny individual cups we use for the Lord’s Supper with grape juice not long ago, I began to think about the meaning behind the symbol: the blood of Jesus, spilled for us for the forgiveness of our sins.
I’m a bit of a perfectionist, so as I was filling the tiny cups, I tried to fill each cup with approximately the same amount of grape juice. I remembered how when I was a teenager, I would always try to get the cup that had the most juice in it. Like drinking an extra milliliter of juice would make me more holy or something. I wondered how many other people did the same.
Of course, it doesn’t matter how much juice we drink when we observe the Lord’s Supper. What matters is that we trust in the blood that this juice symbolizes.
But just as I always tried to get the most juice, sometimes I feel like I need more of Jesus’s blood. I feel like I’ve messed up more than the average guy. More than the average pastor. So certainly more of Jesus’s blood was spilled for me on the cross than for the average person sitting in the pews.
But that’s not how it works. Jesus didn’t spill one drop of blood for one sinner and two drops for a slightly worse sinner. He spilled it all for each of us. Because our sin, no matter how much or how little, no matter how big or how small, is what separates us from the holy and perfect God. We deserve death and separation from God.
But in His love, God did not want us to die and be separate from Him. So He sent a substitute to die in our place: Jesus Christ. He died for us, and we receive the gift of salvation by grace through faith in Him.
That’s so much more important than an extra milliliter of grace juice.