The Lord’s Supper is a gift of life and love to be received, not a requirement to be fulfilled. What Jesus gave to His church in the Supper is the inviting and absolving Gospel. Therefore, it was celebrated daily Apostles and then weekly by the church. In Acts 2:42 records, "And they continued steadfastly in the apostles’ doctrine and fellowship, in the breaking of bread, and in prayers.” The “breaking of the bread” was the very means by which the Holy Spirit continued to bring Christ to the baptized at Pentecost. God fed the new life by His Supper that He had gifted them with Holy Baptism. The same form is found later in Acts with the Apostle Paul delivering teaching and those “gathered together to break bread” (Acts 20:7).
It is fitting to use this setting for the end of the church year as we celebrate the Reformation. Luther composed German hymns for the Ordinary so that all of his fellow Germans could learn and understand the Liturgy. Previously, only those few taught Latin could participate and understand the words of the Liturgy. Essential to Luther's Reformation was and continues to be learning how we live out the faith, what we believe, and why we believe it. These hymns continue to assist us in singing the faith and enhancing our understanding of each part of the Liturgy.
While God is present everywhere, He cannot be found everywhere as the God of love and mercy. Instead, in the Divine Service, Jesus promises to be for us. He is not the abstract or hidden God! Jesus’s presence in the Divine Service is His saving presence in concrete means where He has promised to give us forgiveness and life. He serves us through means that He has appointed and received by us in faith. Word and Sacrament are together the treasures given by the risen Christ as He comes into the midst of His gathered church.