Podcast: Are We Undervaluing the Lord’s Supper?

In this episode of The Crossway Podcast, Tim Chester, author of Truth We Can Touch How Baptism and Communion Shape Our Lives, discusses the Lord’s Supper, explaining why he thinks many evangelical churches undervalue communion, the significance of the fact that Jesus gave us the physical elements of bread and wine, and what it means when we say that Christ is present in our celebration of the Lord’s supper.

 

This article is part of the The Crossway Podcast series.

10 Things You Should Know about the Lord’s Supper

Here’s a link to an article entitled “10 Things You Should Know about the Lord’s Supper” that I’ve written for the Crossway blog. It’s linked to my book Truth We Can Touch which is a theological exploration of how baptism and communion shape our lives together as God’s people, explaining how the physical water, bread, and wine embody the promises, grace, and presence of Christ.

Truth We Can Touch

New book: Truth We Can Touch

My latest book, Truth We Can Touch: How Baptism and Communion Shape our Lives, is published today by Crossway. I’ve been working on this book for about ten years and it’s very precious to me. Sinclair Ferguson has generously written the foreword. Here’s the blurb …

Baptism and the Lord’s Supper are more than just water, bread, and wine. They are God’s promises to us in physical form.

What is happening when someone passes through the waters of baptism? What’s the significance of eating bread and drinking wine together as a church on Sunday mornings? What’s the point of these physical substances?

Tim Chester guides us through the Bible, explaining how the sacraments, embodying the promises of God in physical form, were given to us to strengthen our faith and shape our lives. The physical bread, wine, and water are a confirmation of our union with Christ. Chester aims to help us treasure baptism and Communion and approach them rightly, so we can receive the full benefit God intends them to physically bring us.

And here are some endorsements:

“In Truth We Can Touch, Tim Chester makes a compelling case for evangelicals to recover an understanding of baptism and the Lord’s Supper as God’s promise that comes to us in physical form. Deeply biblical and yet eminently practical, this book provides an alternative to a theology of the word limited to our heads. God’s word in Christ comes to us not only in preaching but also in baptism and at the table. As embodied creatures, we embrace God’s promises in touch and taste, with delight and praise. This accessible and winsome book is a joy!”
J. Todd Billings, Gordon H. Girod Research Professor of Reformed Theology, Western Theological Seminary, Holland, Michigan

“This is hands down the best book on the sacraments I’ve read—warm, compelling, eye-opening, and saturated in gospel encouragement. I hadn’t realized how much I needed it.”
Sam Allberry, Speaker, Ravi Zacharias International Ministries; author, Why Does God Care Who I Sleep With? and 7 Myths about Singleness

“In this delightful book, Chester reminds us that baptism and Communion are God’s gifts to us that convey the gospel and grace in powerful ways. As a Baptist I would put some things differently, but I celebrate and rejoice in the main thesis set forth by Chester. Baptism and Communion are central in the New Testament, and something is wrong if they are neglected or ignored by us. Take up and read and be instructed, challenged, and—most of all—encouraged by the gospel, which is displayed so beautifully in baptism and the Eucharist.”
Thomas R. Schreiner, James Buchanan Harrison Professor of New Testament Interpretation, The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary

“After reading Tim Chester’s Truth We Can Touch, I sent our pastoral staff a message: ‘Add this book to our reading list for our interns, and add it to our book nook.’ Chester is one of our favorite writers, and his books have blessed our local church. Once again, he combines theological clarity with gospel warmth, conveying the beauty of Christ to the reader. By reading this accessible book, you will value baptism and Communion more, and you will be moved to worship the Savior as you consider Chester’s explanation of baptism as the embodiment of our union with Christ and the Lord’s Supper as the embodiment of our communion with Christ.”
Tony Merida, Lead Pastor, Imago Dei Church, Raleigh, North Carolina; author, Ordinary

“At last, here is a great evangelical book on the sacraments. I have longed for such a book for years, one that is deep yet accessible, theologically robust and biblically grounded, and—perhaps most of all—one that touches the heart with wise pastoral application. This is a valuable resource for all ministers and a treasure for all God’s people. I cannot commend it highly enough—a delight from beginning to end.”
Melvin Tinker, Senior Minister, St. John Newland, Hull, United Kingdom; author, Language, Symbols, and Sacraments

“The sacraments are integral to the history of redemption, yet the evangelical church has tragically neglected them as secondary and nonessential. Tim Chester sets baptism and the Lord’s Supper vividly in their biblical and historical contexts. Superbly written, easily accessible to a wide readership, rooted in Scripture and the theology of the Reformation, this book can be a catalyst for widespread recovery of the supreme blessing God gives through his appointed signs.”
Robert Letham, Professor of Systematic and Historical Theology, Union School of Theology