Father, why is there a pile of rocks set up near the river? Father, why do we eat this flat bread with bitter herbs and drink these cups each spring feast? Why do we have this parade every Fourth of July, with fireworks at night?
Memorials are used to teach future generations to appreciate monumental historical events, to be thankful, to show honor, and to never allow the event to have been done in vain. Another intended purpose is to teach truth so following generations would learn from past mistakes or improve on celebrated victories.
Every Lord's day we have the opportunity to remember the the single most significant event the history of mankind has ever known. By partaking of the bread, which is the body of Jesus, and the cup, which is the blood of Jesus, we "proclaim His death until He comes". This is a command that the Lord himself directed us to follow, "THIS do in remembrance of me". Our faith and assurance of eternal life with Him are based on the fact of the resurrection, something that the powers of hell wish to diminish and degrade. This is His memorial. Man has constructed many memorials for the purpose of teaching, honoring and reminding generations to of significant events in our history. Washington, for example, is full of such memorials and we must continuously teach these events so as to never forget. But, the difference between these memorials and that of Jesus' is their make up.
Statues and fountains, buildings, obelisks, and roadways constructed of stone, metal and wood abound. The memorial to Jesus, if you will, is a living memorial, composed of basic life needs, food and drink. When we 'partake', we not only take in and digest, it literally is a communing with or fellowshipping with Christ Jesus.
Just as memorials remind us of past important events that impact our lives, so too the memorial of Jesus. "This is my body given for you", becomes the weekly reminder of God's gift of grace, what He gave to all mankind. This giving of His body is the giving of His life on our behalf, law breakers now under the required penalty of death.
Likewise, "This cup is the new covenant in my blood", becomes a living reminder of the death that institutes the gospel of grace, the new covenant or 'way' to come to know God. Men of all nations can now, by faith in Jesus, be justified by the grace gift of God, apart from any works. God forbid we ever forget to honor this truth or neglect to pass it on to future generations, for the body and blood of Jesus is worth remembering, above all others.