There is no official doctrine that I know of that compares the sacrament table to the place that Jesus was laid. (Yes, I first heard this concept from John Bytheway, but he doesn’t count as an official source. Love him though!) That being said, it is my OPINION that the rich symbolism is there intentionally. And here’s why…
Sacrament Represents Christ – And Christ Died
Death is something Christ allowed to happen. He did it so he could break the bonds of death. This makes the theme of “death” in the sacrament not seem so unusual. The bread and the water represent Christ’s body and blood. We know this. Members of the priesthood reverently uncover the bread and pass it to the congregation and do the same with the water. Then after the meeting the cloths are neatly folded. I remember watching the LDS movie, “The Lamb of God.” In the last scene, instead of seeing Christ’s body, he is gone. It shows folded cloths where Jesus was laid. Instantly, it reminded me of serving as a teacher as a teenager. I remember carefully and neatly folded the cloths after the sacrament was over.
Baptism is a symbol of death, burial and resurrection
We know Jesus died for us. And that is part of what we are remembering. So its hard to argue that the sacrament doesn’t involve remembering death. (Specifically, Christ’s death.) And let me add another point on that… What does the sacrament do again??? What’s that? It renews your baptismal covenant. And what is baptism symbolic of? Official doctrine of the LDS church states that baptism is symbolic of the death, burial, and resurrection of Christ. So baptism has some symbolism of death. Sacrament renews our baptismal convenient. It’s not a hard stretch to place a symbol of death also on the sacrament.
One person has told me this infographic comparison is “creepy.” What we perceive as odd or shocking is really just strong and rich symbolism that exists to teach and to help us remember. (Temple is another place that has strong symbolism).
Items you will need:
- Download the Sacrament & Christ’s Burial – Infographic pdf
Please comment below and share!
(you might also like this sacrament infographic)