From the 28 Fundamental Beliefs
The communion service is one of the most important sacraments of the church. Jesus instituted this service the night of his betrayal by Judas Iscariot. The gospels inform us that the first communion took place on the evening of the passover. In a real sense the passover was a type or shadow of the communion. The passover commemorated the liberation of the children of Israel from Egyptian bondage. On the night of the inaugural passover service, a lamb was slain, roasted and eaten, and its blood was painted on the doorpost, to protect the firstborn of that house from the death angel. All those houses which did not have the sign of the blood, suffered the loss of the first born. The communion service commemorated the death of the lamb Christ Jesus, whose blood is applied to deliver and protect us from the power of sin and death. When we partake of the symbols of the bread and wine which represent the body and blood of Christ, we mirror what Israel experienced on their way out of Egypt. The New Testament believers made communion a high priority. Regular communion was a significant part of the early church, because they realized it was empowering, renewing, restoring, and reconnecting in nature. It takes the believer back to his roots, lest we forget what Christianity is all about, and ignore the real source of our power. The apostle Paul reminded the Corinthians that communion was to be a part of the church and believers experience until the Lord returns and reunites with his faithful followers. Jesus promised that he would celebrate communion with us when the ransomed of all ages are gathered in the kingdom of glory. And what a communion that will be.
The Lord's Supper is a participation in the emblems of the body and blood of Jesus as an expression of faith in Him, our Lord and Saviour. In this experience of communion Christ is present to meet and strengthen His people. As we partake, we joyfully proclaim the Lord's death until He comes again. Preparation for the Supper includes self-examination, repentance, and confession. The Master ordained the service of foot washing to signify renewed cleansing, to express a willingness to serve one another in Christlike humility, and to unite our hearts in love. The communion service is open to all believing Christians. (1 Cor. 10:16, 17; 11:23-30; Matt. 26:17-30; Rev. 3:20; John 6:48-63; 13:1-17.)