Communion: The Passover Connection
Dr. John Miller is a chiropractor who was led to study the Passover connection with the Lord’s Supper and the ancient prophecies about a sin-bearing Messiah. By uncovering these Jewish roots, John found a remarkable pathway to healing.
THE LORD’S SUPPER CONTAINS A KEY TO HEALING
John was searching for biblical keys to healing when he came upon this verse, written by the Apostle Paul: “For he who eats and drinks in an unworthy manner eats and drinks judgment to himself, not discerning the Lord’s body. For this reason many are weak and sick among you, and many sleep” (1 Corinthians 11:29-30).
John said, “This Scripture plainly says that failing to discern the body of the Lord will make you weak, or sick, or cause you to die prematurely. From this it follows that proper discernment or understanding will bring you healing. Although the Scripture says this so definitely, I had been in church all my life, and not only had I never heard this taught, I had never seen it applied.”
John’s research of the deep wisdom contained in this verse led him to the Jewish feast of Passover.
THE LORD’S SUPPER OCCURRED IN A PASSOVER SEDER
The Gospel of Luke describes how the Lord’s Supper came to be created. In the following passage, Jesus is speaking:
“‘I have looked forward to this hour with deep longing, anxious to eat this Passover meal with you….’ Then He took a loaf of bread; And when He had thanked God for it, He broke it apart and gave it to them, saying, ‘This is my body, given for you. Eat it in remembrance of me.’
After supper He gave them another glass of wine, saying, ‘This wine is the token of God’s new agreement to save you – an agreement sealed with the blood I shall pour out to purchase back your souls’” (Luke 22: 14-20 Living Bible Translation).
PASSOVER WAS A SACRED JEWISH OBSERVANCE
John believes that it is not a coincidence that the Messiah gave this new observance during Passover. He explains: “Jesus came as the Messiah to the Jewish people, and fulfilled hundreds of Jewish prophecies and symbols. Passover was one of the most sacred of all Jewish observances, and literally foreshadowed the deliverance that would come to people when the Messiah appeared.
“Passover occurred at the culmination of the ten plagues that were brought on Egypt, so that the Jewish people could come out of slavery to serve God. Jewish families killed and cooked a lamb, and then put the blood of the lamb on the doorposts of their houses. Seeing the blood, the angel of death literally passed over their home. The feast of Passover, still practiced by observant Jews today, commemorates this event.”
THE BODY OF THE PASSOVER LAMB SYMBOLIZED HEALING
“The blood of the lamb was important — it was on the doorpost to save their lives — but they were also commanded to eat all the body of the Passover lamb. The body of the lamb was to save their bodies. The Bible said they came out without one feeble one among them. Eating the body of the Passover lamb was the reason that none was feeble.
There is a spiritual significance here. If we take the Passover lamb as a symbol for the coming Messiah, we can easily recognize that the brain of the lamb symbolized the mind of the Messiah. The lamb’s eyes signified the ability to see things the way God does. The heart of the lamb meant to have the compassionate heart of the Messiah.
So, one way of recognizing the body of the Lord, our Passover lamb, is to meditate on all the parts of the Passover lamb as we eat the bread of the Lord’s Supper. One of my friends did this and his peripheral vision was immediately healed.”
THE LORD’S SUPPER RESTORED HIS PERIPHERAL VISION
“My friend raced cars for a living, and he had a bad crash. He really was blessed to be alive. However, this wreck had cost him his peripheral vision, which is a pretty severe limitation for a professional driver. One night he was visiting at my house and as we talked, I explained the power and purpose of the Lord’s Supper to him.
“It was about two o’clock in the morning, when we decided to share the Lord’s Supper together and meditate on its healing properties. I broke the bread and handed him a piece. We took pieces of broken bread, chewed them slowly and meditated for quite a while on what it meant for Jesus to give his body to be broken for us.
“As my friend meditated on the truth of healing through the Jesus, he imagined eating every part of the Passover lamb, just as the ancient Hebrews were commanded to do. When he imagined eating the lamb’s eyes, his own eyes were healed and his peripheral vision came back.”
A PASTOR WAS HEALED OF CANCER AFTER TAKING THE LORD’S SUPPER
“Discerning the body means eating the bread of the Lord’s Supper thoughtfully and meditatively, considering all the implications of the suffering that the Lord endured on our behalf. Jesus took on Himself the sins and sicknesses of us all. We meditate on what it means to be free of all that. When we take the Lord’s Supper, however, this won’t do us much good unless we believe it. We cannot be forgiven for our sins unless we receive it, and we cannot be healed of our sicknesses unless we believe it.
“Many people are healed once they understand and believe this. For example, Troy Miller, no relation, is a pastor in Florida who had cancer of the kidney. He was bedfast in the hospital, not expected to recover. The Lord spoke to his mother, telling her to take the Communion elements of bread and wine to him in the hospital. When Troy received Communion, or the Lord’s Supper, the cancer began to disappear from his body, even as he lay there in the hospital.”
Another example is from a young mother named Jane who was hospitalized with numerous injuries after a terrible car wreck. The doctors were predicting the worst, but when her father brought Communion to her in the hospital, she immediately began to get better.
HEALING IS OFTEN GRADUAL, NOT SUDDEN AND SPECTACULAR
One thing that Sid Roth often emphasizes is the difference between healing and miracles. He teaches: “Many times people are expecting their healing to take place dramatically and immediately. I think they get miracles and healing mixed up. Miracles are immediate and often spectacular. However, in practice, most healing takes place gradually. By recognizing the value of gradual healing, we can increase our faith immensely. It gives us the patience and confidence to wait on the healing to manifest, recognizing small, positive changes as we make daily observance of the Lord’s Supper.”
John describes two of his experiences with gradual healing through the Lord’s Supper: “One young lady was brought to me who was dying from Epstein Barr virus. The virus had destroyed 39% of her liver, and she was very ill. She had been in medical care, but it was giving her no hope. At my suggestion, she began taking Communion three times a day, discerning the Lord’s body, broken so that she might have her healing. Within two weeks I received a call from her father who said that her lab tests were starting to come back as normal. A year later, she was in perfect health, with no trace of the virus in her blood.
“I myself was healed of chronic headaches which had developed from a head injury. Every day I took a large chunk of bread and chewed it bite-by-bite, meditating on the mystery of exchanging my sickness with Jesus’ wholeness, because all my diseases were placed on Him. He paid the price for my wholeness.”
THE SIN-BEARING MESSIAH ALSO TOOK OUR SICKNESSES
John also researched Isaiah’s prophecy about the sin-bearing Messiah. “The ancient rabbis believed that Isaiah 53, written 700 years before the birth of Jesus, described a coming Messiah who would take our sins and our sicknesses onto His own body. They called this Messiah the Leprous Messiah because He would be disfigured by the sins of humanity. They saw in the passage that He would be a source of healing as well as forgiveness of sin.
But He was pierced through for our transgressions, He was crushed for our iniquities; The chastening for our well-being fell upon Him, And by His stripes we are healed. Isaiah 53:5
John continues: “Note that the prophecy says, By His stripes, we are healed. Part of this passage is repeated in Matthew 8:17 and again in 1 Peter 2:24 because it is so important. The stripes referred to were 39 lashes that were laid on His back when he was scourged prior to being crucified.
“Jesus’ body was beaten in punishment for the sins of humanity. In becoming the Lamb of God, Jesus took the punishment for us, so we could be the righteousness of God in Him. It was not pointless suffering, but was something He accepted so that we could be healed, soul and body, according to prophecy. Isaiah 53:10 says that it pleased the Lord to bruise Him, and that He was made to be sick with our sicknesses and sin with our sins.
“The recent movie by Mel Gibson, The Passion, does not really portray how much abuse Jesus actually took. The Bible says that the lashes flayed His back so completely that it looked like one big stripe. His beard was plucked out and His face was beaten. Isaiah 56 gives a very graphic description of the beating He took when He became sin for us. He was made unrecognizable by the beating.”
Since He was made to be sick with our sicknesses, we shouldn’t bear our own sicknesses any more than we should continue to bear our own sin. When it comes to redemption, it is wrong to separate sin and sickness. God wants the whole man — body, soul and spirit — to be reconciled with Him. Both sin and sicknesses are works of the devil. Sin is his work against our spirit and sickness is often his attack against our body.
THINK OF THE LORD’S SUPPER AS A KIND OF MEDICINE
John encourages people to think of the Lord’s Supper as if it were medicine: “If you went to a doctor and got some pills, you would take them as directed, maybe two or three times a day, and you would not expect to be completely healed the first time you took them. I encourage people to place as much faith in the Lord’s Supper as they do in their doctor’s medicine. If you are sick, take the Lord’s Supper like any other medicine. Every time you take it, meditate on the Lord’s body, expecting gradual healing to manifest. Communion is yours to take as often as you feel led to do so. Your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit, and you are the priest, and you can observe Communion wherever and whenever you decide.
“Jesus said, ‘What things soever you desire, believe you receive it and you will have it.’ In Communion you can believe that you are being progressively healed and this takes the pressure off to receive healing all at once.
If we take Communion on a regular basis, daily or even several times a day, we can take it believing in progressive healing. This is good for people who do not have the faith to receive immediate, total healing, and it builds their faith because they can see small, progressive improvements. The important thing is to take the Lord’s Supper in faith, recognizing signs of improvement.
WHAT YOU CAN DO
1. John encourages everyone to develop observance of the Lord’s Supper as a way of life. If you are very sick, take it several times a day, just as you would take any other medicine.
2. You can observe the Lord’s Supper by yourself, in your own home or wherever you are. The earliest followers of Jesus did it every day, going from house to house according to the book of Acts. You do not need to be in church or have a pastor present. In God’s eyes, you are a priest. You are the temple of the Holy Spirit, so it is your privilege and your obligation to observe the Lord’s Supper.
3. You do not need any special bread or wine, because it is your faith that is the key, not the material objects you use. Faith is the key to unlocking all of the promises of God. Jesus said, “What things soever you desire, believe you receive them and you shall have them.” When we take Communion in faith, then we enter not only in to forgiveness of sin, but also healing for our body.
4. John says, “I like to take a large hunk of bread so that I can chew it and meditate for a long time on this mystery. I have made a string with 39 knots on it, and as I chew the bread, I touch the knots thinking of the 39 lashes that Jesus took for me. This helps me to discern the Lord’s body, and the freedom I now have because I have reconciliation with God. I think of my healing as something that is already done, already accomplished. As I eat the bread, I receive healing in every cell, every organ and every function of my body.
5. “After taking communion, it is a very good time to cast out spirits of infirmity. We must not underestimate the role of evil spirits because 11 of 19 individual healings that Jesus did involved casting out a spirit of infirmity. I like to think of doing spiritual warfare with the blood of Jesus on my breath.”
“I have been privileged to bring the message of healing through the Lord’s Supper in many parts of the world, and have had the great blessing of seeing all types of illness healed when people learn the truth. The truth is that every disease and every sin you can ever know has already been taken by Jesus, so you do not have to suffer it. Put your faith into receiving what Jesus did at Calvary. Think about it when you take the Lord’s Supper, and have abundant life. Your only question should be whether your healing will come gradually or as a sudden miracle.”
Unless otherwise indicated, Scripture taken from the New King James Version. Copyright ©1979, 1980, 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved.