Heidelbergian Children's Catechism (age 8- 10 years)
Lord's Day 29
You probably have a picture of your grandfather somewhere in your house. Your friend asks who he is. Do you say “This is a piece of photographic paper with the image of my grandfather”? Of course not. You answer, “That’s my grandpa!” We are still speaking about the first time the Lord’s Supper was celebrated. At that time, Jesus took bread and said, “This is my body.” And when He took the cup He said, “This is my blood.” Perhaps you think that what Jesus said was untrue. Bread is just bread. And wine is made from grapes. Now think back to what we said before. The picture you have is not your grandpa, true, but the picture does make you think of him. It is as if you really see him. It is the same with the bread of the Lord’s Supper. The bread is not the body of Christ. But through the piece of bread you think of Christ’s body, which was the wine. The wine is not the blood of our Saviour. But through the wine you think of his blood, which dropped from the cross to the ground. We deserved to die on the cross, but Christ was willing to take our place and suffer the punishment we deserved. When you have a meal at home, one little piece of bread will not make you feel full. You would not feel satisfied with a bite of bread and a sip of wine, as they are handed out in church. You need a bowl of cereal and several slices of bread. But in the Lord’s Supper, a piece of bread and a sip of wine is enough. How is that possible? The Holy Spirit uses the Lord’s Supper to make your faith strong. He does that when we eat a piece of bread and when we drink of the wine. He makes us aware of the suffering of Jesus. People quickly forget. They can even forget the message of the Lord’s Supper. Therefore He told us that the Lord’s Supper should be celebrated often. The Lord takes good care of us! He gives us the ability to listen to his word. He also gives us baptism and the Lord’s Supper.