Question on Acts 2:42; 20:7

Common Meal?

DRL Note: From an old Email list a question was answered involving Acts 2:42 and 20:7 regarding whether the meal mentioned was the Lord’s Supper or a common meal.   Here is that answer from Joe Slater…

Both Acts 2:42 and 20:7 are in the context of an assembly.  Interestingly, both references are followed by “breaking bread” in the context of an ordinary meal (2:46) “breaking bread from house to house” [or ‘at home’]; and 20:11 where Paul, after raising Eutychus, came back up to the upper room and broke bread.

Also in Acts 2:42 the definite articles appear: “the” breaking of “the” bread (contrast to “breaking bread” in v. 46).  I understand the definite articles to indicate that this was not just an ordinary “breaking bread” (eating a common meal), but a particular act of breaking a particular bread (observing the Lord’s Supper).

The definite article is also present in Acts 20:7 (“the” bread) in the Textus Receptus (the Nestle-Aland/United Bible Societies text omits the article).  Acts 20:11 does not have the definite article.

Hope this helps.