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Blair Holt of Chicago lost his life shielding a friend on a bus as gang members were shooting. We don’t know what our response will be when we see danger like this. But when we think how our Lord volunteered to shield us from violence we deserved, we hardly have words to express gratitude. To help us grasp the meaning of His suffering for us, Jesus instituted the ritual of Holy Communion. We read this in Luke 22: “When the time came, Jesus and the apostles sat down together at the table. … He took some bread and gave thanks to God for it. Then he broke it in pieces and gave it to the disciples, saying, ‘This is my body, which is given for you. Do this in remembrance of me.’ After supper he took another cup of wine and said, ‘This cup is the new covenant between God and his people—an agreement confirmed with my blood, which is poured out as a sacrifice for you.’” The bread and cup teach us that Christ volunteered to be our Substitute to absorb the punishment we deserve. His taking our place is what makes salvation possible. He died in our place, a perfect sacrifice to atone for our sins. When we begin to grasp what this means, we fall down and give thanks to Jesus for what He has done. We declare He is worthy of our praise and obedience.

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