The gospel is the power of God to get us to stop looking at ourselves. In ourselves, we see not a thing worth celebrating, and that’s if God helps us (without His help we might see something good, but it would be because we’re deceiving ourselves). We see the desire to do what’s right, but lack of ability to carry it out (Romans 7:18). Other times we do what some other part of us didn’t want to do (Romans 7:19). God’s Word cuts down to the covetousness in our hearts that others might not even see (Romans 7:8), and what seems worse, our sin even misuses God’s Word to stoke our desire for what we aren’t supposed to want (Romans 7:9).
So, then, can you eat and drink at the Lord’s Table in a “worthy” manner? You can’t if you’re looking at you. You can, and you must, if you are looking at Christ.
One of the great crescendos is in Romans 8:1: “There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus.”
The judgment coming down on us as sinners, the true sentence and just punishment we deserved, have been taken by Christ for all those who are in Him. We have been weighed and measured, and we have been found without remaining charge in Jesus.
By sending his own son in the likeness of sinful flesh and for sin, he condemned sin in the flesh, in order that the righteous requirement of the law might be fulfilled in us, who walk not according to the flesh but according to the Spirit (8:3b-4)
The ordinance of communion is not when we look at what we’ve done in our flesh, but when we look at what Jesus accomplished in His flesh. Only one is gospel.
The bread and wine are gift. Receive them as symbols of your freedom from condemnation in Christ.