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John L. Sullivan (Heavyweight Champion 1882-92)

John L. Sullivan (Heavyweight Champion 1882-92)

I recently presided over my first Lord’s Supper service at Meridian Baptist Church. My sermon that day, as with every Lord’s Supper service, focused on Christ’s work of redemption and the seriousness of the ordinance. I preached from Luke 22:14-20 and emphasized the sacrifice of Christ.

In these verses, Jesus describes the relationship between the elements of the Lord’s Supper and His suffering. It says, “19 And when He had taken some bread and given thanks, He broke it and gave it to them, saying, “This is My body which is given for you; do this in remembrance of Me.” 20 And in the same way He took the cup after they had eaten, saying, “This cup which is poured out for you is the new covenant in My blood (NASB).”

As I studied the passage, I thought through specific areas of application. I’ve put together a sermon preparation form that lists application topics. Here’s its current form.

Application:

  • Theological (What does this passage say about God?)
  • Universal (What does this passage say about Man?)
  • Relational (What does this passage say about how we relate with others?)
    • With God
    • With our spouse
    • With our family
    • With our church
    • With those at work/school/activities/neighbors
  • Individual (What does this passage say about you?)
    • Attitudes
    • Actions

As I walked through the list, I considered how Jesus’ teaching about the Lord’s Super applied to marriage.

I reflected on a foundational marriage text. Paul wrote in Ephesians 5:25, “25 Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ also loved the church and gave Himself up for her (NASB).”

That verse, when combined with Jesus’ words in Luke 22, should challenge every husband to examine his commitment to his wife and family.

Jesus gave himself completely for the church. He took on physical, emotional, and spiritual suffering. He turned away the wrath of God through His shed blood.

As husbands, we must live with same attitude toward our wives that Christ demonstrated when He died for us.

Consider the physical aspect of Jesus’ suffering. He was beaten, scourged, and nailed to cross. On the cross he slowly died of asphyxiation. He experienced brutality.

Men, we must be willing to give ourselves physically for our spouses. Males can endure much more physical hardship than their wives or children. While we may not be called to sacrifice our lives, we must be willing to do the little things, such as sleeping less, so that we are available and ready to fulfill our roles as husbands and fathers.

As husbands we are also to give ourselves emotionally for the sake of our wives. Jesus suffered and persevered under great emotional stress as He approached the cross—and then, once there, things really became difficult.

Men, we must protect our wives and children emotionally. God has placed us in a leadership position and we must be the tower of strength our families need. This role brings difficulties, but we find our strength in our relationship with Christ. If your wife has some area that causes her emotional stress, such as the family finances, you can protect her by handling that particular duty.

Our main role is to give of ourselves spiritually. Jesus took our sins on Himself and satisfied God’s wrath on the cross. No greater spiritual act ever occurred.

We must, as husbands and fathers, take the spiritual reins in our families. Our job is to lead our wives and children to grow in grace and knowledge of God. That job means more than simply going to church. Church augments the teaching of the home. To give ourselves over to this role takes the most commitment, as our not-yet-glorified selves resist every move towards spiritual leadership.

So guys, it’s time to man up.

Put your wife and family first.

Jesus put you first.

I dare you to be like Him.

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