(February 16, 1964 P.M.)
to say just a brief word again about the Lord's Table.
I would like to read three passages of Scripture:
I received of the Lord that which also I delivered unto
you, That the Lord Jesus in the night in which He was
betrayed took bread; and when He had given thanks, He
brake it, and said, This is My body, which is for you:
this do in remembrance of Me. In like manner also the
cup, after supper, saying, This cup is the new covenant
in My blood: this do, as often as ye drink it, in
remembrance of Me" (I Cor. 11:23-25;
Who knew no sin He made to be sin on our behalf; that we
might become the righteousness of God in Him"
(II Cor. 5:21).
much more shall the blood of Christ, Who through the
eternal Spirit offered Himself without blemish unto God,
cleanse your conscience from dead works to serve the
living God?" (Heb. 9:14).
KNEW NO SIN HE MADE TO BE SIN. He offered Himself without
spot unto God. Here are two statements which seem to be a
direct contradiction of each other. They both refer to
the same time. That is, they both refer to the Cross of
the Lord Jesus. One statement is, that He Who knew no sin
was made to be sin. The other statement is, that He
offered Himself without spot unto God. It looks like a
contradiction, but there is no contradiction. They are
only two sides of one thing. That is, two sides of
Christ's work on the Cross. One is what He was in
Himself, that is, a Lamb without spot. One Who knew no
sin. That is what He was in Himself. Absolute
sinlessness, without a spot of sin.
other is what He was made to be on our behalf. He was
made to be sin although He knew no sin. There is an Old
Testament type of this twofold work of the Lord Jesus.
You will find it in the sixteenth chapter of the Book of
Leviticus. It is the account of the two goats. These two
goats were brought before the Lord by the priests. They
were both without spot or blemish. One of them was
offered to God a burnt offering there on the Altar. The
goat without spot or blemish offered to God. But there
was the other goat. That goat was equally without spot or
blemish. But the priest laid his hands on the head of
that goat, and confessed the sin of the people over that
goat, and in figure transferred the sin of all the people
to that goat. And then the priest took the goat and led
it out through the camp, right away from the Presence of
God, out beyond the farthest bounds of the people of God,
right away unto the wilderness. The people all turned to
watch the priest leading this goat away. They watched it
until it had gone right beyond their sight. And then the
priest let it go. He drove it away into the wilderness.
And he returned to the Presence of God without the goat.
That is the Old Testament illustration of this very
one side, Jesus was an offering without sin, acceptable
to God. On the other side, He was made sin for us, and
was driven out far from the Presence of God. He cried in
that moment, "My God, My God, why hast Thou forsaken
Me?" If that scapegoat could have spoken far away
into the wilderness, it would have just used one word, he
would have cried, "Forsaken." 'I am forsaken: I
am driven far from the Presence of God and man. I am
despised and rejected of men.' That is the other side of
the Person and Work of the Lord Jesus in His Cross.
am just going to speak about one thing in that
connection. When Jesus on the night of the passover sat
down at the table with His disciples, He took a loaf and
He broke it. He tore it to pieces, and He said,
"This is My body which is broken for you." And
then He took the cup, and Matthew tells us that He said,
"This cup is the new covenant in My blood, which is
poured out for you." My body broken, My blood poured
out. What did that mean? I am only speaking of this one
side of things just now. Jesus had taken the place of our
broken humanity. Sin is that which breaks our humanity.
It tears our human nature to pieces. Sin disintegrates
us. That is what happened at the beginning.
Satan had done his work and Adam had accepted the
temptation, the humanity of Adam was no longer whole. It
was a broken humanity. Before that, it was complete, it
was just one thing. But after that unbelieving
disobedience, that humanity was torn asunder. It was just
broken to pieces. And that is how God views humanity now.
When Jesus was broken, He was just taking the place of
our broken humanity. He was saying, 'I represent the
whole human race in its broken condition. I enter into
the brokenness of the world's humanity. My life is no
longer in Me, it is poured out unto death.' That is the
effect of sin and Satan's work. And in that day at the
Cross, on that one side, that is what Jesus meant by, 'My
body broken, My blood poured out. I represent the state
of all men, no longer whole, no longer complete.'
when we come to the Lord's Table, we should always
remember this. We should always remember when we take the
broken bread, and the cup, we are acknowledging and
confessing before God that in ourselves we are broken.
There is no wholeness about us. Sin has destroyed that
wholeness. We are broken in the sight of God. That is
what we mean when we take the loaf and the cup. We are
acknowledging that before God in ourselves we are a
broken humanity. We cannot stand up before God as
something that is whole and complete and perfect. He was
made sin for us. He was broken as we are broken. He took
the place of our destroyed and disrupted humanity. And
God had to turn His face away. Just as that scapegoat in
the desert felt its utter desolation, not one eye to pity
it, not one word of consolation, not one hand to help,
alone, far away from the habitation of God and man. That
is where the Lord Jesus went on our behalf, bearing the
judgment of God upon our broken humanity. Before ever the
other side can become true of us, the other side is that
we are made complete in Him. All our brokenness is mended
in Christ; we who were afar off are now made nigh. We can
now, through faith in Jesus Christ, stand before God as
those who have been made whole. But before we can do
that, and have a standing in the Presence of God, we have
got to recognize that naturally we are broken.
how these two things are blended in the New Testament?
Take the great Apostle Paul, before he met the Lord
Jesus, he thought he was a very whole and complete being.
He thought that he could stand up in the Presence of God.
He thought that there was nothing wrong with him but
everything was right. There was no brokenness about Saul
of Tarsus. When he met the Lord Jesus, it changed that
situation. The first thing that he discovered was that he
could not stand in the Presence of God. Before God, he
was a broken man. There was nothing whole about him. That
was one side of history; and he went all through his life
keeping that always before him. How many things he said
about himself referring to his own weakness. He said, 'I
am weak, but I glory in my weakness.' I have entered into
the brokenness of the Lord Jesus. I have shared His
broken body. In myself I am worthless. I am like a
shattered vessel. But on the other side, how the Lord
blessed that man, how the Lord was with that man. Yes, he
was now accepted by God. Now he could stand up straight
before the Lord. Two sides.
and I want to stand well with the Lord, if we really do
want to find favor with God, if we want to come onto the
life side of the Cross, and come right into the Presence
of the Lord, and offer our worship to the Lord, we must
first of all be very conscious of our own brokenness. God
only really uses broken men and women, those who have
come to recognize that in themselves they are very poor
creatures. There is about them a spirit of real
brokenness. Such ones come into this wonderful word of
the Lord, 'To this one will I look, even to him who is of
a broken and a contrite spirit' (Isa. 66:2; Ps. 51:17).
notice that this was all to do with the service of God.
In the Book of Leviticus, it is the service of God; it is
all service being offered to God. And that just means
this: That before ever we can receive the blessing from
the Lord, the Lord has got to be satisfied. It has first
got to be unto the Lord before it can be from the Lord.
This brokenness is our offering to the Lord. It is real
worship to be broken before the Lord. The broken and
contrite spirit is the spirit of true worship. That is
acceptable service. That is the real service to God. And
when God is satisfied, then we can come into the
blessing. The proud man, the self-sufficient man, the man
who stands up in his own strength, he is not the man who
inherits the blessing. He is not the man whom the Lord
will use. He is not the man who can really serve the
Lord. But the man who dare not lift up his eyes to
heaven, but with bowed head says, "God be merciful
to me a sinner" (Luke 18:11-13). This man goes to
his house justified. This man has the recognition and
blessing of the Lord. Will you always remember this word
when you come to the Lord's Table? When the loaf is
broken, in your heart you say, 'This is my brokenness. He
was broken for me. He was broken as me. In myself I am
broken before God. He was broken in order to make us
we take the broken bread, we are testifying and
acknowledging our brokenness before God. But not only at
the Lord's Table; the Lord's Table is the center of our
whole life. Our entire life is gathered into the Lord.
The Lord's Table has got to have a meaning every day and
every hour, and this has to be the meaning: I in myself
am poor and broken before God. And I can only dwell in
the Presence of God because Jesus makes me whole. "This
is My body, broken for you."