November 21, 2022

Table Manners: The Poor

1 Corinthians 11:27-34

My brothers and sisters, when you gather to eat, you should all eat together.

—  1 Corinthians 11:33

As we noted yesterday, the apostle Paul was dealing with a major problem in the Corinthian church. Some people were gorging themselves on the communion bread and wine and leaving others with none. Paul explained that when people did this, they were not “discerning the body of Christ.”

As believers, we need to reflect well on Jesus’ gift of himself to pay for our sins, and we need to share with one another in thanks for all that the Lord has shared with us.

Another way to look at this may be that Paul was also showing particular concern for poorer members of the church. When those who were wealthy consumed most of the bread and wine, the poor, the most vulnerable, were left without. And Paul was saying that the people who were doing that were not participating in the Lord’s Supper. After all, the Lord Jesus always showed concern for the poor—and as followers of Christ, so should we.

So when we come to the Lord’s table, we must recognize that our relationship with God is personal but never private. How we treat the “least of these” (Matthew 25:40) in our church reflects our relationship with God. We must ask, Is everyone in our church being cared for, and built up? If someone is being ignored or overlooked, how can we make things right, for Jesus’ sake?

Lord Jesus, you cared and provided for the poor and built them up. May we, your church, reflect your character. In your name, Amen.

About the author — Kristopher Walhof

Kristopher Walhof is a minister in the Christian Reformed Church who lives with his wife and seven-year-old son in rural Kenya. He teaches Bible and theology courses to theological students seeking ordination in the Africa Inland Church (AIC) denomination.

Start your day with quick daily devotions.

See God's love, power, presence, and purpose in your life every day!