This Sunday morning we will practice the ordinance of communion. The apostle Paul exhorts the Corinthian believers to examine themselves prior to taking the elements of the Lord’s Supper so that they might not take them in an unworthy manner (1 Cor. 11:27-32). This is a principle that applies to every believer — thorough self-examination to assure that one’s salvation is genuine and that he is in right fellowship with Christ is essential prior to taking the elements of this meal.
So how might we examine ourselves? Paul doesn’t give specific instructions in this passage, but from a variety of other passages, we can accumulate a number of questions to determine the condition of our souls.
In Through the Looking Glass, Kris Lundgaard has accumulated a helpful list of such questions, and I condense them here:
- Ask the Spirit, “Have I slipped at all from fervent love for Christ and faithfulness to Him?” (cf. Ps. 38:1-5; 103:2-5)
- Do you still have peace and joy? “Peace and joy come from a faithful, healthy life of faith. Have your peace and joy stayed steady through hardship and temptation, or do you quickly become uneasy and confused?”
- Do you see outward signs of decay in your spiritual life?
- Are you tired of God? I.e., “Have you lost your taste for worship, either public or private? Do you neglect family prayer? Do you often find ways to justify skipping your spiritual duties? Or, what’s worse, are you still outwardly faithful in all your spiritual duties, yet lifeless as a robot?”
- Does the glory of God shine through you? Some ways to evaluate your heart: “How’s your spiritual appetite? (1 Pt. 2:2-3; Ps. 19:10)…Is Christ the first and best thought of your life? (Eph. 5:10)…Do you go out of your way for Christ and His people? (Jn. 15:1-17)”
Ask the questions. Confess sins that are revealed. Thank God for empowerment where sin is avoided and being redeemed. And come prepared for worship.