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         33
      Closed Communion
      James Foley
       
      I Corinthians 11:17-34: "Now in this that I declare unto you I praise you not, that ye come together not for the better, but for the worse. For first of all, when ye come together in the church, I hear that there be divisions among you; and I partly believe it. For there must be also heresies among you, that they which are approved may be made manifest among you. When ye come together therefore into one place, this is not to eat the Lord's Supper. For in eating every one taketh before other his own supper: and one is hungry, and another is drunken. What? have ye not houses to eat and to drink in? or despise ye the church of God, and shame them that have not? What shall I say to you? shall I praise you in this? I praise you not. For I have received of the Lord that which also I delivered unto you, That the Lord Jesus the same night in which he was betrayed took bread: And when he had given thanks, he brake it, and said, Take, eat: this is my body, which is broken for you: this do in remembrance of me. After the same manner also he took the cup, when he had supped, saying, This cup is the new testament in my blood: this do ye, as oft as ye drink it, in remembrance of me. For as often as ye eat this bread, and drink this cup, ye do show the Lord's death till he come. Wherefore whosoever shall eat this bread, and drink this cup of the Lord, unworthily, shall be guilty of the body and blood of the Lord. But let a man examine himself, and so let him eat of that bread, and drink of that cup. For he that eateth and drinketh unworthily, eateth and drinketh damnation to himself, not discerning the Lord's body. For this cause many are weak and sickly among you, and many sleep. For if we would judge ourselves, we should not be judged. But when we are judged, we are chastened of the Lord, that we should not be condemned with the world. Wherefore, my brethren, when ye come together to eat, tarry one for another. And if any man hunger, let him eat at home; that ye come not together unto condemnation. And the rest will I set in order when I come."

      INTRODUCTION

      Historic Baptists, true Baptists, have believed in and still believe in closed communion. Baptists impose upon themselves the same restrictions that they impose on others concerning the Lord’s Supper. Baptists have always insisted that it is the Lord’s Table, not theirs; and He alone has the right to say who shall sit at His table. No amount of so called brotherly love, or ecumenical spirit, should cause us to invite to His table those who have not complied with the requirements laid down plainly in His inspired Word. With respect to Bible doctrines we must always use the scripture as our guide and practice. For Baptists, two of the most important doctrines are Baptism and The Lord’s Supper. These are the only two doctrines we recognize as Church Ordinances. The Bible is very clear in teaching how these doctrines are to be practiced and by whom.

      We only have two ordinances that we must never compromise or we risk our very existence, they are Baptism and The Lord’s Supper.

      The moment we deviate from the precise method God has prescribed we have started down the slippery slope of error. True Baptists have held fast to the original doctrine of The Lord’s Supper from the time of Christ and the Apostles.

      Unfortunately, in this day of what the Bible describes as the age of luke warmness, Baptists are becoming careless in regard to strictly following the pattern laid out for us in Scripture. Many of our Bible colleges are graduating otherwise sincere, Godly and dedicated pastors and teachers who have not been taught the very strict, biblical requirements that surround the Lord’s Supper. Any Bible college that neglects to teach its students the differences surrounding Closed Communion, Close Communion and Open Communion is not simply short changing its students; it is also not equipping their students to carry on sound Bible traditions. The result is men of God and churches that fall into error. And as we will see, this is serious error.

      Should we as Baptists ignore the restrictions made by our Lord and Master? NO! When we hold to the restrictions placed upon the Lord’s Supper by our Master, we are defending the "faith which was once delivered to the saints" Jude 3.

      The Lord’s Supper is rigidly restricted and I will show this in the following facts:

      IT IS RESTRICTED AS TO PLACE

      A. I Corinthians 11:18 says, "When ye come together in the church." This does not mean the church building; they had none. In other words, when the church assembles. The supper is to be observed by the church, in church capacity. Again this does not mean the church house. Ekklesia, the Greek word for church, means assembly. "When ye come together in the church," is when the church assembles.

      B. When we say church we mean an assembly of properly baptized believers. Acts 2:41-42: "Then they that gladly received his word were baptized: and the same day there were added unto them about three thousand souls. And they continued stedfastly in the apostles' doctrine and fellowship, and in breaking of bread, and in prayers."

      The church is made up of saved people who are baptized by immersion. In the Bible, belief precedes baptism. That’s the Bible way.

      Acts 8:12-13, "But when they believed Philip preaching the things concerning the kingdom of God, and the name of Jesus Christ, they were baptized, both men and women. Then Simon himself believed also: and when he was baptized, he continued with Philip, and wondered, beholding the miracles and signs which were done."

      When we say properly baptized, we mean immersed. No unbeliever should take the Lord’s supper, and no non-immersed believer should take the supper. Those who are sprinkled are not baptized and cannot receive the supper. The Greek word for baptize is baptizo, and it always means to immerse.

      "In every case where communion is referred to, or where it may possibly have been administered, the believers had been baptized Acts 2:42; 8:12; 8:38; 10:47; 6:14-15; 18:8; 20:7. Baptism comes before communion, just as repentance and faith precede baptism".

      C. The Lord’s Supper is for baptized believers in church capacity: "When ye come together in the church," again not a building, but the assembly of the properly baptized believers.

      D. The fact that the Lord’s Supper is a church ordinance, to be observed in church capacity, is pointed out by the fact that it is for those who have been immersed and added to the fellowship of the church.

      E. The Lord’s Supper is never spoken of in connection with individuals. When it is referred to, it is only referred to in reference to baptized believers in local church capacity I Cor. 11:20-26).

      I want to quote Dr. W.W. Hamilton,

      "The individual administration of the ordinance has no Bible warrant and is a relic of Romanism. The Lord’s Supper is a church ordinance, and anything which goes beyond or comes short of this fails for want of scriptural example or command".

      “The practice of taking a little communion kit to hospitals, nursing homes, etc. is unscriptural and does not follow the scriptural example.”

      IT IS RESTRICTED TO A UNITED CHURCH

      A. The Bible in I Cor. 11:18 is very strong in condemning divisions around the Lord’s table. For first of all, when ye come together in the church, I hear that there be divisions among you; and I partly believe it.
      19 For there must be also heresies among you, that they which are approved may be made manifest among you.
      20 When ye come together therefore into one place, this is not to eat the Lord's supper.

      There were no less than four divisions in the Corinthian church.
      I Cor. 1:12: "Now this I say, that every one of you saith, I am of Paul; and I of Apollos; and I of Cephas; and I of Christ."

      Because of these divisions, it was impossible for them to scripturally eat the Lord’s Supper. Division in the local church is reason to hold off observing the Lord’s Supper. But there are also other reasons to forego taking the Lord’s Supper. If there is gross sin in the membership we do not take it. Here is scriptural evidence for this: 1Co 5:7 Purge out therefore the old leaven, that ye may be a new lump, as ye are unleavened. For even Christ our Passover is sacrificed for us:
      8 Therefore let us keep the feast, not with old leaven, neither with the leaven of malice and wickedness; but with the unleavened bread of sincerity and truth. 9 I wrote unto you in an epistle not to company with fornicators:
      10 Yet not altogether with the fornicators of this world, or with the covetous, or extortioners, or with idolaters; for then must ye needs go out of the world. 11 But now I have written unto you not to keep company, if any man that is called a brother be a fornicator, or covetous, or an idolater, or a railer, or a drunkard, or an extortioner; with such an one no not to eat.

      B. At this point, I want to ask these questions: Are there not doctrinal divisions among the many denominations? Is it not our doctrinal differences that cause us to be separate religious bodies?

      IT IS RESTRICTED BY DOCTRINE

      A. Those in the early church at Jerusalem who partook "continued stedfastly in the apostles’ doctrine" Acts 2:42. And they continued stedfastly in the apostles' doctrine and fellowship, and in breaking of bread, and in prayers.

      B. Those that do not hold to apostolic truth are not to partake. This means there is to be discipline in the local body. How can you discipline those who do not belong to the local body? You can’t. The clear command of scripture is to withdraw fellowship from those who are not doctrinally sound.

      II Thes 3:6: "Now we command you, brethren, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that ye withdraw yourselves from every brother that walketh disorderly, and not after the tradition which he received of us."
      Rom. 16:17: "Now I beseech you, brethren, mark them which cause divisions and offences contrary to the doctrine which ye have learned; and avoid them."
      To commune together means to have the same doctrine.
      II Thes. 2:15: "Therefore, brethren, stand fast, and hold the traditions which ye have been taught, whether by word, or our epistle."
      II John 10-11: "If there come any unto you, and bring not this doctrine, receive him not into your house, neither bid him God speed: For he that biddeth him God speed is partaker of his evil deeds."

      C. Some Baptists in our day have watered down this doctrine by practicing what they call “Close Communion.” By this they mean that they believe that members of another Baptist church may take communion with us because they are of the same beliefs. Once again, this is unscriptural.

      The welcome to the Lord's Table should not be extended beyond the discipline of the local church. When we take the Lord’s Supper there is supposed to be no gross sin among us and no divisions among us. We have no idea of the spiritual condition of another church’s members. If there is sin or division in the case of this other church’s members, we have no way of knowing it. We cannot discipline them because they are not members of our church. This is why we practice “Closed” communion, meaning it is restricted solely to our church membership. 
      So then, in closing I would like to reiterate the three different ideas concerning the Lord’s Supper and who is to take it. 
      Closed Communion = Only members of a single local church. 
      Close Communion = Members of like faith and order may partake. 
      Open Communion = If you claim to be a Christian, or simply attending the service, you may partake. 
      It is no small thing to attempt to change that which was implemented by our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. 
      Mt. 28:20 Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world. Amen. 
      Many of our Baptist churches have a real need to consider the gravity of the act of observing The Lord’s Supper. It is not a light thing that is to be taken casually or without regard to the spiritual condition of ourselves or our church.
      1Co. 11:27 Wherefore whosoever shall eat this bread, and drink this cup of the Lord, unworthily, shall be guilty of the body and blood of the Lord.

       28 But let a man examine himself, and so let him eat of that bread, and drink of that cup.

       29 For he that eateth and drinketh unworthily, eateth and drinketh damnation to himself, not discerning the Lord's body.

       30 For this cause many are weak and sickly among you, and many sleep.

Church of Christ


DennisD
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Who says it has to? It certainly doesn't forbid them.



God says it has to. Heb 7:12-14 teaches us that authority is required. Vs 12 reads, "For the priesthood being changed, there is made of necessity a change also of the law." Why? Read the rest of this passage. Because there was no authority for someone of the tribe of Judah to be a Priest....notice that the Hebrew writer affirms the fact that it was not explicitly forbidden that a man of the tribe of Judah could serve since the tribe of Judah was never discussed in relation to the priesthood.

Col 3:17 tells us that whatever we do we are to do in the name of the Lord or by His authority. He has not given us such authority.

I might add that faith comes from God's word (Rom 10:17). Something that is not in His Word is not by faith

I would also suggest you read Lev 10:1-2 and notice that Nadab and Abihu were destroyed because they offered strange (UNAUTHORIZED) fire. What are we offerening that is UNAUTHORIZED?

We could also study King Saul and his sacrifices to the Lord in 1 Sam 13. God was not pleased with him there. In 1 Sam 15 Saul claimed that he and the people were going to offer of the animals which he had brought back. Notice what Samuel said in verse 22. Nothing we have to offer is better than what God asks for.
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The first century church did not use mechanical instruments.


Get the latex gloves...this guy can't make up his mind. In the same town, there are two "Churches of Christ" one offers no musical instruments while the other has a regular piano and other instruments for special music.

COCs need to get their story straight.
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Get the latex gloves...this guy can't make up his mind. In the same town, there are two "Churches of Christ" one offers no musical instruments while the other has a regular piano and other instruments for special music.

COCs need to get their story straight.


One might be the United Churches of Christ, the other one, the church of Christ, if so, they be different. First Christin Churches hold to much of the beliefs of the churches of Christ, but they have music instruments. Freewill Baptist hold to many of them as well.

Not defending, trying to keep the record strait. I've never seen a 'church of Christ' with music instruments.




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Musical instruments were certainly authorized in the worship of God in the OT. The entire chapter of 1 Chronicles 25 talks about who was appointed to play various instruments in the house of God. 1 Chronicles 23:5, 2 Chronicles 5:13, 2 Chronicles 7:6, Psalm 33:2, Psalm: 150 etc. all speak of instruments being used in the worship of God. Unless you can show that there was some reason for that to change in the NT the practice stands as completely biblical. Biblically we know all sorts of musical instruments were used in the OT in the worship of God and in Revelation harps are specifically mentioned as being used in heaven. I can't imagine what the reasoning behind thinking that God does not want Christians using instruments in his worship is. It must be pretty convoluted.

Edited by Seth-Doty
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Get the latex gloves...this guy can't make up his mind. In the same town, there are two "Churches of Christ" one offers no musical instruments while the other has a regular piano and other instruments for special music.

COCs need to get their story straight.


I can't speak of anyone in your town. What I can say is that the 1st century church did not use mechanical instrument. Neither did the 2nd Century church. The 3rd Century church did not......It wasn't until around 1000 that the Catholic church (obviously they had already fell away in other ways.) added Mechanical instruments. What I can say is that the NT does not authorize it.


Are there those who fall away from the truth? Certainly there are those who do. We would not have the Catholic church or any other denomination if they did not, but any sound congregation will not use mechanical instruments.
Each person is free to make us his or her own mind for him/herself. Each of us will have to answer for our choices and will be judged by the word (John 12:48). I choose to worship the Lord as He has set forth.
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Musical instruments were certainly authorized in the worship of God in the OT. The entire chapter of 1 Chronicles 25 talks about who was appointed to play various instruments in the house of God. 1 Chronicles 23:5, 2 Chronicles 5:13, 2 Chronicles 7:6, Psalm 33:2, Psalm: 150 etc. all speak of instruments being used in the worship of God. Unless you can show that there was some reason for that to change in the NT the practice stands as completely biblical. Biblically we know all sorts of musical instruments were used in the OT in the worship of God and in Revelation harps are specifically mentioned as being used in heaven. I can't imagine what the reasoning behind thinking that God does not want Christians using instruments in his worship is. It must be pretty convoluted.


Why Seth, if you have to go to the OT to get mechanical instruments, why do you not bring forth animal sacrifices as well? They were authorized under the OT as well. I trust that you do not call for animal sacrifices though. Just remember that we are not under the OT any longer. Col 2:14 tells us that it was nailed to the cross. Yes, it is there for our learning (Rom 15:4), but we do not worship in the same manner. We live under the NT.

As for Revelation, it is symbolic and you are mistaken as to it being clear that there will be mechanical instruments in heaven.

You don't have to understand God's reasoning since He is much smarter than you are; you just have to obey Him. We all do.
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Why Seth, if you have to go to the OT to get mechanical instruments, why do you not bring forth animal sacrifices as well? They were authorized under the OT as well. I trust that you do not call for animal sacrifices though.


We would, except that the NT makes it clear that the sacrifices were only for a picture of things to come and that Christs sacrifice ended the requirement to offer animals.


Just remember that we are not under the OT any longer. Col 2:14 tells us that it was nailed to the cross. Yes, it is there for our learning (Rom 15:4), but we do not worship in the same manner. We live under the NT.


Can you give one single NT reason why instrumental music should not be used today? Obviously it can't be wrong in and of itself or else those OT verses talking about using it to praise God would not be there. Your only possible avenue would be to show from the NT that that aspect of worship has changed and it is no longer acceptable. There isn't a single thing that would imply that.

As for Revelation, it is symbolic and you are mistaken as to it being clear that there will be mechanical instruments in heaven.


"Revelation 5:8 And when he had taken the book, the four beasts and four and twenty elders fell down before the Lamb, having every one of them harps, and golden vials full of odours, which are the prayers of saints."

"Revelation 14:2 And I heard a voice from heaven, as the voice of many waters, and as the voice of a great thunder: and I heard the voice of harpers harping with their harps:"

"Revelation 15:2 And I saw as it were a sea of glass mingled with fire: and them that had gotten the victory over the beast, and over his image, and over his mark, and over the number of his name, stand on the sea of glass, having the harps of God."

Doesn't look symbolic to me, and even if it were, why would such "symbolism" be used if it were improper to use such instruments in praise of God?

You don't have to understand God's reasoning since He is much smarter than you are; you just have to obey Him. We all do.


Granted, but you have not established that not using musical instruments is a command of God. What scriptures there are on the subject would point the other way actually.

A Simple Question: Is it a sin not to use mechanical instruments in worship service?


No, it isn't wrong "not" to use them, if that were the only problem with the COC I wouldn't take to much issue with them. I would just consider it a odd belief not substantiated or even indicated in any way by scripture but one that was relatively harmless. The most serious problem with the COC is that they add works to grace for salvation.
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A simple answer to your question, no, yet, the other is of more importance.


Silly of you to bring up sacrifices, grace come in, and of course animal sacrifices never saved no one, that is impossible, yet there was a sacrifice, that being Jesus, and its all about Jesus, He gets all the glory.

Heb 10:4 For it is not possible that the blood of bulls and of goats should take away sins

Only Jesus, the blood of Jesus, can take away the sin.

Eph 2:8 For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God:
Eph 2:9 Not of works, lest any man should boast.

Joh 3:36 He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life: and he that believeth not the Son shall not see life; but the wrath of God abideth on him.

Joh 3:18 He that believeth on him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.

Its so easy, yet Christ is a stumbling block for many, they just can't seem to believe that Jesus is enough, that salvation is only in Jesus, they just feel they have to add something to it.

Salvation only come by grace thought faith in Jesus, not of works, not of self, its a gift. And even John 3:18 and 3:36 makes it so clear, he that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life, he that doesn't does not. No baptizing there, and never in the Bible does it require baptizing to be saved.

Mr 16:16 He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned.

Even this verse is plain, he that believeth shall not be damned. think, its says he that believeth not shall be damned, not he that is not baptized shall be damned, only he that believeth not. Yet there is more.

Ro 10:9 That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.
Ro 10:10 For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.

Clearly, he that confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved, nothing about baptizing, its pointing to only Jesus, its all about Him.

Them there is this verse:


13 For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.
Romans 10:13 (KJV)
Nothing about baptizing, yet he that calls on the Lord, shall be saved.


Whosoever therefore shall confess me before men, him will I confess also before my Father which is in heaven.
Matt 10:32

Who ever confess Jesus before men, nothing whatsoever about baptizing.


Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if any man hear my voice, and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with me.
Rev 3:20 (KJV)

And the Spirit and the bride say, Come. And let him that heareth say, Come. And let him that is athirst come. And whosoever will, let him take the water of life freely.
Rev 22:17 (KJV)

Yes, Christ will stand at the door of a mans heart, yet he will not come in unless He is asked, and its not by baptizing, Jesus just says come, come and believe.
Yes, seems so many just start stumbling when it come to just trusting Christ, they sense they have to do something, add just a bit to it, and refuse to believe, refuse to place all that faith into Christ, and Him alone. Yes, Jesus has a wonderful gift to offer whosoever, will just accept it, He only ask they you believe on Him, trust and obey.

That whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have eternal life.
John 3:15 (KJV)

For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.
John 3:16 (KJV)

Yes, so simple, believe on Him, that is all it takes, its not about works, its about Jesus, He is enough, and it be only Him that can save a soul from the depths of hell.
Yes, there is one and only one way to the Father, Christ tells us its though Him alone, John 16:6. not through Him plus water baptism, just Him alone. One can only trust and obey Him, and when they do, they will know the moment it happens, the moment the Holy Ghost enters their body, 1 Corinthians 6:19. And they will never be the same, not after they realize the love Jesus has given them by dying upon that cross that they may have:

Joh 10:10 The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.

Life more abundantly, and that life is before those who have Jesus as their Savior. Oh how we have so much to look forward to, and its due to one that can save us from our sins, if we will just trust Him and accept the free gift.

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One might be the United Churches of Christ, the other one, the church of Christ, if so, they be different. First Christin Churches hold to much of the beliefs of the churches of Christ, but they have music instruments. Freewill Baptist hold to many of them as well.

Not defending, trying to keep the record strait. I've never seen a 'church of Christ' with music instruments.

Also, if the CoC are like the IFB in that they are not a denomination but separate, independent churches as are the IFB, one can't proclaim they don't have their story straight because they don't all agree on all points any more than all IFB churches don't agree on all points.
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I can't speak of anyone in your town. What I can say is that the 1st century church did not use mechanical instrument. Neither did the 2nd Century church. The 3rd Century church did not......It wasn't until around 1000 that the Catholic church (obviously they had already fell away in other ways.) added Mechanical instruments. What I can say is that the NT does not authorize it.


Are there those who fall away from the truth? Certainly there are those who do. We would not have the Catholic church or any other denomination if they did not, but any sound congregation will not use mechanical instruments.
Each person is free to make us his or her own mind for him/herself. Each of us will have to answer for our choices and will be judged by the word (John 12:48). I choose to worship the Lord as He has set forth.


If you could provide one scripture reference which forbids the use of a piano or other "mechanical" music device in New Testament Christian churches someone might listen to you. Otherwise, the CoC is no different than the Catholic Church in that regard, dogma/history of the church carry more weight than scripture.
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We would, except that the NT makes it clear that the sacrifices were only for a picture of things to come and that Christs sacrifice ended the requirement to offer animals.




Can you give one single NT reason why instrumental music should not be used today? Obviously it can't be wrong in and of itself or else those OT verses talking about using it to praise God would not be there. Your only possible avenue would be to show from the NT that that aspect of worship has changed and it is no longer acceptable. There isn't a single thing that would imply that.



"Revelation 5:8 And when he had taken the book, the four beasts and four and twenty elders fell down before the Lamb, having every one of them harps, and golden vials full of odours, which are the prayers of saints."

"Revelation 14:2 And I heard a voice from heaven, as the voice of many waters, and as the voice of a great thunder: and I heard the voice of harpers harping with their harps:"

"Revelation 15:2 And I saw as it were a sea of glass mingled with fire: and them that had gotten the victory over the beast, and over his image, and over his mark, and over the number of his name, stand on the sea of glass, having the harps of God."

Doesn't look symbolic to me, and even if it were, why would such "symbolism" be used if it were improper to use such instruments in praise of God?



Granted, but you have not established that not using musical instruments is a command of God. What scriptures there are on the subject would point the other way actually.



No, it isn't wrong "not" to use them, if that were the only problem with the COC I wouldn't take to much issue with them. I would just consider it a odd belief not substantiated or even indicated in any way by scripture but one that was relatively harmless. The most serious problem with the COC is that they add works to grace for salvation.


Seth, you can not provide even 1 verse that says "thou shalt not make animal sacrifices." Allow me to be clear that I am not suggesting that we sacrifice animals since the NT does in fact teach that we have a better sacrifice (Christ) and therefore do not need to make such. You also do not have any passage that says not to use hamburgers and coke on the Lord's supper either. Again, I am not suggesting that we use such or that it would even be ok. The Bible clearly tells us what we are to use.

Yes, I can and have given reasons why they are not to be used. We do not use them because we have no authority (In the NT) for them. You can not provide even one passage that justifies/authorizes their use. We are told to sing (Eph 5:19; Col 3:16) We are not told to use mechanical instruments. Not one verse that commands it, not one verse that gives us an example of it and not one verse that even inplies that we should use them.
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A simple answer to your question, no, yet, the other is of more importance.


Silly of you to bring up sacrifices, grace come in, and of course animal sacrifices never saved no one, that is impossible, yet there was a sacrifice, that being Jesus, and its all about Jesus, He gets all the glory.

Heb 10:4 For it is not possible that the blood of bulls and of goats should take away sins

Only Jesus, the blood of Jesus, can take away the sin.

Eph 2:8 For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God:
Eph 2:9 Not of works, lest any man should boast.

Joh 3:36 He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life: and he that believeth not the Son shall not see life; but the wrath of God abideth on him.

Joh 3:18 He that believeth on him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.

Its so easy, yet Christ is a stumbling block for many, they just can't seem to believe that Jesus is enough, that salvation is only in Jesus, they just feel they have to add something to it.

Salvation only come by grace thought faith in Jesus, not of works, not of self, its a gift. And even John 3:18 and 3:36 makes it so clear, he that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life, he that doesn't does not. No baptizing there, and never in the Bible does it require baptizing to be saved.

Mr 16:16 He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned.

Even this verse is plain, he that believeth shall not be damned. think, its says he that believeth not shall be damned, not he that is not baptized shall be damned, only he that believeth not. Yet there is more.

Ro 10:9 That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.
Ro 10:10 For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.

Clearly, he that confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved, nothing about baptizing, its pointing to only Jesus, its all about Him.

Them there is this verse:


13 For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.
Romans 10:13 (KJV)
Nothing about baptizing, yet he that calls on the Lord, shall be saved.


Whosoever therefore shall confess me before men, him will I confess also before my Father which is in heaven.
Matt 10:32

Who ever confess Jesus before men, nothing whatsoever about baptizing.


Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if any man hear my voice, and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with me.
Rev 3:20 (KJV)

And the Spirit and the bride say, Come. And let him that heareth say, Come. And let him that is athirst come. And whosoever will, let him take the water of life freely.
Rev 22:17 (KJV)

Yes, Christ will stand at the door of a mans heart, yet he will not come in unless He is asked, and its not by baptizing, Jesus just says come, come and believe.
Yes, seems so many just start stumbling when it come to just trusting Christ, they sense they have to do something, add just a bit to it, and refuse to believe, refuse to place all that faith into Christ, and Him alone. Yes, Jesus has a wonderful gift to offer whosoever, will just accept it, He only ask they you believe on Him, trust and obey.

That whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have eternal life.
John 3:15 (KJV)

For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.
John 3:16 (KJV)

Yes, so simple, believe on Him, that is all it takes, its not about works, its about Jesus, He is enough, and it be only Him that can save a soul from the depths of hell.
Yes, there is one and only one way to the Father, Christ tells us its though Him alone, John 16:6. not through Him plus water baptism, just Him alone. One can only trust and obey Him, and when they do, they will know the moment it happens, the moment the Holy Ghost enters their body, 1 Corinthians 6:19. And they will never be the same, not after they realize the love Jesus has given them by dying upon that cross that they may have:

Joh 10:10 The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.

Life more abundantly, and that life is before those who have Jesus as their Savior. Oh how we have so much to look forward to, and its due to one that can save us from our sins, if we will just trust Him and accept the free gift.


It seems that you are wanting to discuss salvation. We were discussing the issue of mechanical instruments but if you wish to discuss salvation, I will be glad to do so again.

Here is a simple question. How many times is the question "What must I do to be saved?" (in one form or another) found in the NT? What is the answer given in each of those times?
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If you could provide one scripture reference which forbids the use of a piano or other "mechanical" music device in New Testament Christian churches someone might listen to you. Otherwise, the CoC is no different than the Catholic Church in that regard, dogma/history of the church carry more weight than scripture.


Tim, first allow me to say that there is no passage, not one, in the NT nor in the OT that explicitly states, "thou shalt not use mechanical instruments." But then again you can not provide even 1 passage in the NT (which is what we are under now) that gives you a command to use it, nor an example of their use in NT worship, nor can you provide even 1 passage that implies (inferrence) that we are to use them. Where is your authority? You go back to the OT to try to find it. We are not under the OT any longer.

No, I don't place anything above scripture, but I do recognize the fact that the example (both in the NT and in secular writtings) of the apostles and others of that time is a valid example to look at. I do believe that inspired men carry more weight that does those who have nothing more that men's traditions to offer. The inspired apostles and others of that time did not use them. You use them, not because you have authority for it but because of men's traditions which began with the catholic church around 1000 AD.
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  • Independent Fundamental Baptist

The topic, church of Christ, is such a broad subject, and I answered the question if using music instruments was a sin with a no, yet as I said, this other is of much greater importance, in fact, its the most important.

You asked, "How many times is the question "What must I do to be saved?" Of which I have already answer, Paul says it this way, that is should a person want to be saved..

Ro 10:9 That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.
Ro 10:10 For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.

To be saved, confess the Lord Jesus with your mouth, believe in thine heart that God hath raised Him from the dead, and thou shall be saved. Simple isn't it, not even no baptizing. In other words he is saying the same thing that Ephesians 2:8.9, says

Eph 2:8 For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God:
Eph 2:9 Not of works, lest any man should boast.

Grace, plus faith, to be saved, there is nothing possible for you do in order to gain salvation for its not of self, not of works, its a gif, yet you just can't resist adding to it, water baptism, its so hard to accept a free gift, it just seem there has to be something done to get that gift of salvation outside of faith and believing, so many add water baptism. When in fact, Jesus is enough. Jesus saves, water, a baptistery, has never saved anyone.

If, that is if I believe one had to be baptized in order to be saved, myself being a Baptist pastor, I would have to take a baptistery every where I went just in case there was not a body of water handy just in case I come across someone wanting to be saved. There is no way that I could witness to anyone, talking to them about being saved, telling them that they will have to attend the next church services in order to be baptized and fit for heaven, and that it they died before they could be baptized that they could not enter heaven. But I don't have to fear that, because God's Word tells us, "That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation."

Now I know why that beautiful old song says, "Amazing grace, and not, "Amazing Baptistery," for its all about that amazing grace that our Lord shown and offered to such worms as us.

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Tim, first allow me to say that there is no passage, not one, in the NT nor in the OT that explicitly states, "thou shalt not use mechanical instruments." But then again you can not provide even 1 passage in the NT (which is what we are under now) that gives you a command to use it, nor an example of their use in NT worship, nor can you provide even 1 passage that implies (inferrence) that we are to use them. Where is your authority? You go back to the OT to try to find it. We are not under the OT any longer.


"Matthew 5:17 Think not that I am come to destroy the law, or the prophets: I am not come to destroy, but to fulfill."

"1 Corinthians 10:11 Now all these things happened unto them for ensamples: and they are written for our admonition, upon whom the ends of the world are come."

"2 Timothy 3:16-17 All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness: That the man of God may be perfect, thoroughly furnished unto all good works."


Christ did not come to destroy the entire OT and end it's usefulness to us. If God accepted something as proper in the OT and you think things have changed and it is no longer acceptable in the NT the burden of proof is on you. Such a change can be show for sacrifices and the ceremonial law, but God suddenly disproving of instruments when he clearly had no objection to them in the OT? There isn't any evidence for that, I mean even at the resurrection what happens? The trumpet is sounded, and the dead are then raised. I certainly don't mind acapella singing, but there is an enormous OT precedent for instruments being used in the worship of God and nothing in NT that would change that. Indeed in the OT they are often portrayed as an asset in worship and in bringing the presence of God. For example what happened when the evil spirit was troubling saul? David played his harp and it departed. Then in 2 Kings 3:15 Elisha called for a minstrel and had the Spirit of the Lord come upon him as he heard the minstrel play. The biblical use of instruments by God's people in worship was extensive.

As far as needing specific NT "authority" for each and every aspect of worship, where is the NT "authority" to use a english translation of Gods word? Where is the "authority" for a group of Christians to have a "church building" instead of meeting in a house? Where is the "authority" to have "hymn books" in said church building? I could take any one of those issues and make your argument that there is no NT "authority" for it. Such "no authority" issues could be raised almost without number. See how silly that gets?

Biblically Christians have liberty to do anything they like as long as it is not sin in and of itself, and is not a bad testimony and stumbling block to others that leads them astray.
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What's that little thing they blow on so that they can sing on key? Seems if it wrong to have any musical instrument, that would be wrong as too, so don't they rightly contradict their self.

Off topic a bit. The local SBC downtown invited the Mennonite choir to come sing. Afterwards one person complimented them on their singing. He replied, "I noticed your choir sings rater good too, yet with all that loud music, it drowns them out, you cannot understand hardly a word they sing for the loud music. If y'all would throw out most of those instruments, where they could be heard sining, they would probably get many compliments."

As for me, I dislike all of that loud music, I enjoy hearing what is begin sung.

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What does "worship" comprise?

Reading Scripture - including the NT writings;
Praying;
Singing Psalms, hymns & spiritual songs;
Preaching the Word;
Prophecy - i.e. speaking unto men [to] edification, and exhortation, and comfort.

Musical instruments are given as examples in that passage on church gatherings:
1Cr 14:7 And even things without life giving sound, whether pipe or harp, except they give a distinction in the sounds, how shall it be known what is piped or harped?
8 For if the trumpet give an uncertain sound, who shall prepare himself to the battle?

Is v.7 an argument against the use of pitch-pipes?

It is a reasonable understanding that lifeless melodic instruments give a distinction in the sounds aka a tune to guide the singing.

Now, to what extent is it SINFUL to worship in a way not specifically authorised in the NT? Should we keep our shoes on? Should we insist on Jews & Sikhs removing their head coverings? And women keeping long hair & head coverings?

As believers in Jesus as Lord & Saviour, our sins are forgiven - ALL our sins, past present & future. Is the "sin" of singing to a tune played on a musical instrument a "continuing sin" that is utterly forbidden. (Rom. 6)

There are much more serious sins, involving musical instruments.

Eze 33:6 But if the watchman see the sword come, and blow not the trumpet, and the people be not warned; if the sword come, and take [any] person from among them, he is taken away in his iniquity; but his blood will I require at the watchman's hand.
7 ¶ So thou, O son of man, I have set thee a watchman unto the house of Israel; ...
....
32 And, lo, thou [art] unto them as a very lovely song of one that hath a pleasant voice, and can play well on an instrument: for they hear thy words, but they do them not.
33 And when this cometh to pass, (lo, it will come,) then shall they know that a prophet hath been among them.

Luk 7:30 But the Pharisees and lawyers rejected the counsel of God against themselves, being not baptized of him.
31 And the Lord said, Whereunto then shall I liken the men of this generation? and to what are they like?
32 They are like unto children sitting in the marketplace, and calling one to another, and saying, We have piped unto you, and ye have not danced; we have mourned to you, and ye have not wept.

Are we sinning by using instruments to help our worship? What dies John say?

1Jo 3:6 Whosoever abideth in him sinneth not: whosoever sinneth hath not seen him, neither known him.
7 Little children, let no man deceive you: he that doeth righteousness is righteous, even as he is righteous.

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    • Razor

      “Whenever you find yourself on the side of the majority, it is time to reform (or pause and reflect).”
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    • Razor

      “Whenever you find yourself on the side of the majority, it is time to reform (or pause and reflect).”
      ― Mark Twain
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      Psalms 139 Psalm 139:9-10
      9. If I take the wings of the morning, and dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea; 10. even there shall thy hand lead me, and thy righthand shall hold me. 
       
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    • Bro. West  »  Pastor Scott Markle

      Advanced revelation, then...prophecy IS advanced revelation in the context of the apostles.
      I really do not know where you are going with this. The Bible itself has revelations and prophecies and not all revelations are prophecies.
      Paul had things revealed to him that were hid and unknown that the Gentiles would be fellow heirs.
      How that by revelation he made known unto me the mystery; (as I wrote afore in few words, Eph 3:3-9
      And I do not mean this as a Hyper-dispensationalist would, for there were people in Christ before Paul (Rom. 16:7). This is not prophecy for there are none concerning the Church age in the O.T..
      Israel rejected the New Wine (Jesus Christ) and said the Old Wine (law) was better, had they tasted the New Wine there would be no church age or mystery as spoken above. to be revealed.
      It was a revealed mystery. Sure there are things concerning the Gentiles after the this age. And we can now see types in the Old Testament (Boaz and Ruth) concerning a Gentile bride, but this is hindsight.
      Peter could have had a ham sandwich in Acts 2, but he did not know it till later, by revelation. But this has nothing to do with 1John 2;23 and those 10 added words in italics. Where did they get them? Did the violate Pro. 30:6 Add thou not unto his words, lest he reprove thee, and thou be found a liar. Where did they get this advance revelation? Was it from man, God or the devil?
        I just read your comment and you bypassed what I wrote concerning book arrangement, chapters being added and verse numberings and such. There is no scripture support for these either, should we reject these?
      Happy New Year
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    • Bro. West

      Seeing it is Christ----mas time and I was answering question on Luke 2:33 concerning Jesus, Mary and Joseph . I thought it would be fitting to display a poem i wrote concerning the matter.
      SCRIPTURAL MARY

      I WALK NOT ON WATER NOR CHANGE IT TO WINE
      SO HEARKEN O’ SINNER TO THIS STORY OF MINE
      I, AM A DAUGHTER OF ABRAHAM SINNER BY BIRTH
      A HAND MAID OF LOW ESTATE USED HERE ON EARTH
      MY HAIR IS NOT GENTILE BLOND, I HAVE NOT EYES OF BLUE
      A MOTHER OF MANY CHILDREN A DAUGHTER OF A JEW
      FOR JOSEPH MY HUSBAND DID HONOUR OUR BED
      TO FATHER OUR CHILDREN WHO NOW ARE ALL DEAD
      BUT I SPEAK NOT OF THESE WHO I LOVED SO WELL
      BUT OF THE FIRST BORN WHICH SAVED ME FROM HELL
      MY FLESH SAW CORRUPTION MY BONES THEY DID ROT
      MY PAPS ARE NOT HOLY SO TRUST ME NOT
                                               2
      WHEN I WAS A VIRGIN UNKNOWN BY MAN
      THE ANGEL OF GOD SPOKE OF GOD’S PLAN
      FOR I HAD BEEN CHOSEN A FAVOUR VESSEL OF CLAY
      TO BARE THE SON OF THE HIGHEST BY AN UNUSUAL WAY
      FOR THE SCRIPTURE FORETOLD OF WHAT WAS TO BE
      SO MY WOMB GOD FILLED WHEN HE OVER SHADOW ME
      BUT THE LAW OF MOSES DID DEMAND MY LIFE
      WOULD JOSEPH MY BETROTHED MAKE ME HIS WIFE
      I THOUGHT ON THESE THINGS WITH SO NEEDLESS FEARS
      BUT A DREAM HE RECEIVED ENDED ALL FEARS
      MY FLESH SAW CORRUPTION MY BONES THEY DID ROT
      MY PAPS ARE NOT HOLY SO TRUST ME NOT
                                              3
      THEN MY SOUL DID REJOICE IN GOD MY SAVIOR
      HE SCATTERED THE PROUD AND BLESS ME WITH FAVOR
      O’ THE RICH ARE EMPTY, THE HUNGRY HAVE GOOD THINGS
      FOR THE THRONE OF DAVID WOULD HAVE JESUS THE KING
      BUT BEFORE I DELIVERED THE MAN CHILD OF OLD
      CAESAR WITH TAXES DEMANDED OUR GOLD
      TO THE CITY OF DAVID JOSEPH AND I WENT
      ON A BEAST OF BURDEN OUR STRENGTH NEAR SPEND
      NO ROOM AT An INN, BUT A STABLE WAS FOUND
      WITH STRAW AND DUNG LAID ON THE GROUND
      MY FLESH SAW CORRUPTION MY BONES THEY DID ROT
      MY PAPS ARE NOT HOLY, SO TRUST ME NOT
                                                  4
      MY MATRIX WAS OPEN IN A PLACE SO PROFANE
      FROM THE GLORY OF GLORIES TO A BEGGAR’S DOMAIN
      SO WE WRAPPED THE CHILD GIVEN TO THE HEATHEN A STRANGER
      NO REPUTATION IS SOUGHT TO BE BORN IN A MANGER
      HIS STAR WAS ABOVE US THE HOST OF HEAVEN DID SING
      FOR SHEPHERDS AND WISE MEN WORSHIP ONLY THE KING
      BUT HEROD THAT DEVIL SOUGHT FOR HIS SOUL
      AND MURDER RACHEL’S CHILDREN UNDER TWO YEARS OLD
      BUT JOSEPH MY HUSBAND WAS WARNED IN A DREAM
      SO WE FLED INTO EGYPT BECAUSE OF HIS SCHEME
      MY FLESH SAW CORRUPTION MY BONES THEY DID ROT
      MY PAPS ARE NOT HOLY SO TRUST ME NOT
                                               5
      SO THE GIVER OF LIFE, THE ROCK OF ALL AGES
      GREW UP TO FULFILL THE HOLY PAGES
      HE PREACH WITH AUTHORITY LIKE NONE BEFORE
      PLEASE TRUST HIS WORDS AND NOT THE GREAT WHORE
      HER BLACK ROBE PRIEST FILL THEIR LIPS WITH MY NAME
      WITH BLASPHEMOUS PRAISE, DAMMATION AND SHAME
      THERE ARE NO NAIL PRINTS IN MY HANDS, MY BODY DID NOT ARISE
      NOR, AM A DEMON OF FATIMA FLOATING IN THE SKY
      THERE IS NO DEITY IN MY VEINS FOR ADAM CAME FROM SOD
      FOR I, AM, MOTHER OF THE SON OF MAN NOT THE MOTHER OF GOD
      MY FLESH SAW CORRUPTION MY BONES THEY DID ROT
      MY PAPS ARE NOT HOLY, SO TRUST ME NOT
      6
      FOR MY SOUL WAS PURCHASED BY GOD UPON THE CROSS
      FOR MY SINS HE DID SUFFER AN UNMEASURABLE COST
      I WILL NOT STEAL HIS GLORY WHO ROSE FROM THE DEAD
      ENDURING SPIT AND THORNS PLACED ON HIS HEAD
      YET, IF YOU WISH TO HONOR ME THEN GIVE ME NONE AT ALL
      BUT TRUST THE LAMB WHO STOOL IN PILATE’S HALL
      CALL NOT ON THIS REDEEMED WOMAN IN YOUR TIME OF FEAR
      FOR I WILL NOT GIVE ANSWER NEITHER WILL I HEAR
      AND WHEN THE BOOKS ARE OPEN AT THE GREAT WHITE THRONE
      I AMEN YOUR DAMNATION THAT TRUST NOT HIM ALONE
      MY FLESH SAW CORRUPTION MY BONES THEY DID ROT
      MY PAPS ARE NOT HOLY, O’ SINNER TRUST ME NOT

                       WRITTEN BY BRO. WEST
       
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