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    • By Jim_Alaska in Jim_Alaska's Sermons & Devotionals
         14
      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.

Way Of Life - Millennial Glory And The Final Rebellion


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  • Independent Fundamental Baptist

Many a note in my Bible, when it comes to numbers in the text, says 'meaning multiple' or 'not a limited/or confined' number. [my wording here, not quotes]

Some people in the past [pre-1611] thought along many of the same thoughtlines as some here.

 

Example: Rev. 20:4, at the word "thousand" there is a note that says: "That is, whiles they have remained in this life"

 

The note for Rev. 20:2, where Satan is bound for a "thousand years", the note says "That is, from Christs nativity unto the time of Pope Sylvester the second; so long the pure doctrine should after a sort remain."

 

When the Lord was asked how many times we should forgive a brother, the note in Luke 17:4 says: "That is, many times; for by a certain number he meaneth an uncertain."

In the same subject in Matt.18:22 the note says: "We must be continually ready to forgive and be forgiven." [but the Lords words were 70 x 7]

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Good points to consider. I've read of these, and similar.

 

In some cases I think certain views are partly right, but not in whole. If some parts of one view were considered as to how they might fit in with part of another, we may come closer to the truth. Or not. Yet something to consider.

 

I've noticed with most systems, or views, that while their point may sound very good up to a place where they seem to have to change approaches or jump hurdles or simply come up with a means of explaining the troubling area and saying we must just accept that reasoning. This, rather than considering the possibility their system, or view, may be mostly sound yet on one point or in one area they should consider something else; even *gasp* what another system or view has to say about that particular point or area.

 

I can't help but to think back upon how the Pharisees, those who read and studied the Scriptures above all others, yet the vast majority of them got it wrong, even when directly confronted with those points of Scripture being fulfilled right in their midst and in front of them.

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Yes, & future to John, but not future to us.

 

What is the first resurrection that protects us from the second death? And where does John see those resurrected souls reigning?

 

Jesus speaks of a resurrection in John 5:

24 Verily, verily, I say unto you , He that heareth my word, and believeth on him that sent me, hath everlasting life, and shall not come into condemnation; but is passed from death unto life. 25 Verily, verily, I say unto you , The hour is coming , and now is , when the dead shall hear the voice of the Son of God: and they that hear shall live.

 

That resurrection is conversion, and takes place during the present Gospel age - The hour is coming , and now is. That resurrection occurs at salvation, & protects us from the second death & hell. 

 

John sees the souls of the martyrs in heaven:

Rev. 20:4 And I saw thrones, and they sat upon them, and judgment was given unto them: and I saw the souls of them that were beheaded for the witness of Jesus, and for the word of God, and which had not worshipped the beast, neither his image , neither had received his mark upon their foreheads, or in their hands; and they lived and reigned with Christ a thousand years.

That isn't the general resurrection - the dead in sin remain dead during the present millennium. (Gospel age) Dead believers are with Jesus in heaven - as John sees them. Note:

5 But the rest of the dead lived not again until the thousand years were finished.

 

The general resurrection awakens all:

John 5:28 Marvel not at this: for the hour is coming , in the which all that are in the graves shall hear his voice, 29 And shall come forth ; they that have done good, unto the resurrection of life; and they that have done evil, unto the resurrection of damnation.

Sorry, but in context your theory just doesn't stand up. Did Jesus appear to you and take you up into heaven? If your answer is no then rework your solution.

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Covenanter when you've studied the end of time, do you see a rapture/gathering? An ordinary looking Jesus coming back to the clouds? Not the scary Jesus in Revelation.

 

Also do you see the Jewish nation's return as a big sign of Jesus' return? 

 

I see things much the way John does, but I've been reading your posts. I can agree with you that the Jews really really suffered after rejecting Jesus and rebelling against the Romans. 

 

Daniel 2:32 This image's head was of fine gold, his breast and his arms of silver, his belly and his thighs of brass, 33 His legs of iron, his feet part of iron and part of clay.

 

One prOBlem with 70 AD, the Romans was the empire of Iron and we need another empire of Iron and clay. A leadership so bad its dirt or clay. 

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Covenanter when you've studied the end of time, do you see a rapture/gathering? An ordinary looking Jesus coming back to the clouds? Not the scary Jesus in Revelation.

 

Also do you see the Jewish nation's return as a big sign of Jesus' return? 

 

I see things much the way John does, but I've been reading your posts. I can agree with you that the Jews really really suffered after rejecting Jesus and rebelling against the Romans. 

 

Daniel 2:32 This image's head was of fine gold, his breast and his arms of silver, his belly and his thighs of brass, 33 His legs of iron, his feet part of iron and part of clay.

 

One prOBlem with 70 AD, the Romans was the empire of Iron and we need another empire of Iron and clay. A leadership so bad its dirt or clay. 

 

 

I don't see that.  The Roman empire was the iron.  But after Constantine the Roman Empire was revived in the papacy, which was sometimes strong and sometimes weak.  The iron and clay is the present time.  The next event in Daniel's prophecies is thekingdom being given to the  saints of the Most High. Dan 7:27.  Dan 7 covers the same kingdoms as Daniel 2, but in a different form.

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Covenanter when you've studied the end of time, do you see a rapture/gathering? An ordinary looking Jesus coming back to the clouds? Not the scary Jesus in Revelation.

 

Also do you see the Jewish nation's return as a big sign of Jesus' return? 

 

I see things much the way John does, but I've been reading your posts. I can agree with you that the Jews really really suffered after rejecting Jesus and rebelling against the Romans. 

 

Daniel 2:32 This image's head was of fine gold, his breast and his arms of silver, his belly and his thighs of brass, 33 His legs of iron, his feet part of iron and part of clay.

 

One prOBlem with 70 AD, the Romans was the empire of Iron and we need another empire of Iron and clay. A leadership so bad its dirt or clay. 

 

A quick reply as I'm soon going out.

 

I see Jesus return as final - not an ordinary looking Jesus but the all-glorious Lord. Not a prolonged war against his enemies, but they will be condemned summarily by his word. The "pottery" will not survive his rod of iron, but be shattered. Jesus' coming is the final harvest time & a great & eternal separation. (Good seed & tares) As Paul wrote:

 

2 Thes. 1:5 Which is a manifest token of the righteous judgment of God, that ye may be counted worthy of the kingdom of God, for which ye also suffer : 6 Seeing it is a righteous thing with God to recompense tribulation to them that trouble you; 7 And to you who are troubled rest with us, when the Lord Jesus shall be revealed from heaven with his mighty angels, 8 In flaming fire taking vengeance on them that know not God, and that OBey not the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ: 9 Who shall be punished with everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord, and from the glory of his power; 10 When he shall come to be glorified in his saints, and to be admired in all them that believe (because our testimony among you was believed ) in that day.

 

A future millennial reign is not taught in the Gospels nor Epistles. And I believe Revelation cannot be interpreted in a novel way. It is in the Bible, & should be understood by the Bible, comparing Scripture with Scripture.

 

If that makes me a heretic, as some here assert, then what are they?

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Only time will tell who is right. As a human being your side sounds much better for mankind. My side sounds awful for mankind, huge amounts of death and suffering.

 

I don't think either side is a heretic. Wouldn't heretics be people like Joel Osten, Celo Dollar, etc?

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Preterism is of course misguided interpretation but seemingly harmless in some respects and apportionately palitable in some ways, though grossly inconsistent with most Scripture overall.

 

I read Covs posts and at some points think "hmm, I can see how they might come to this conclusion" however, how can that conclusion be reconciled to this, this, this and a hundreds thats.

 

It is the inherent accompanying doctrine of replacement that does red flag it as heresy IMO. 

 

I will hand it to the wolves though, you are wearing much better sheep suits. I can hardly see the zipper at all in this thread.

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'Let us labour to be unmistakable Christians. Let it not be our distinctive character, that we are men of science, or men of literary attainments, or men of the world, or men of pleasure, or men of business, but ‘men of God’.' - J.C. Ryle

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If you are arrested for being a Christian (a real possibility sooner than you think) would there be enough evidence to convict?

Would your care for the Brethren be proof? Since this is the measuring stick whereby all men will know that ye are Jesus's disciples?
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I don't think this has anything to do with "wolves". None of these end-time views leads people away from Christ or point to a false gospel.

I hope you are right - some folks here teach that only Paul's letters are for the church of the present "dispensation" & that the Gospels & Hebrews to Revelation are for the tribulation & Jews in the millennium. And teach a different Gospel for other "dispensations."

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I hope you are right - some folks here teach that only Paul's letters are for the church of the present "dispensation" & that the Gospels & Hebrews to Revelation are for the tribulation & Jews in the millennium. And teach a different Gospel for other "dispensations."

I was only referring to the present discussion at hand.

 

Those who put forth different gospels, different means of salvation, under the guise of "greater understanding", are indeed among those who would fall into the category of wolves.

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I was only referring to the present discussion at hand.

 

Those who put forth different gospels, different means of salvation, under the guise of "greater understanding", are indeed among those who would fall into the category of wolves.

And when you think about it, since Paul sid he only believed in and taught ONE gospel, what then did he preach to the Jews with whom he met often? Which 'faith' was he speaking of when he said we should contend for the faith ONCE delivered to the saints? Jesus was the one who once delivered the faith, so that one faith cannot consist of more than one gospel.

 

Granted, generically-speaking, 'gospel' means good news, so when someone tells me that I got a bonus in my paycheck, they are delivering me a gospel, good news, so really, a specific 'gospel of the kingdom', the good news that Jesus will rule and reign on earth, IS indeed good news, but it is not a gospel that saves, rather is the result OF the gospel that saves, that WE will be there, present IN that kingdom. THAT'S good news, to be certain!

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I was only referring to the present discussion at hand.

 

Those who put forth different gospels, different means of salvation, under the guise of "greater understanding", are indeed among those who would fall into the category of wolves.

 

And it logically follows, therefore, John, that when you say that none of the different end times views currently being put forth do represent a false means of salvation, as you did in post 129, and then others indicate that they disagree with you, then they must be saying that one needs to have the correct end-times view to be saved.

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And it logically follows, therefore, John, that when you say that none of the different end times views currently being put forth do represent a false means of salvation, as you did in post 129, and then others indicate that they disagree with you, then they must be saying that one needs to have the correct end-times view to be saved.

I have heard a few Christians over the years say that if one didn't have the "right" (meaning whatever view they held to) view regarding the end times, that was a sign they weren't saved.

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I marvel that ye are so soon removed from him that called you into the grace of Christ unto another gospel:

Which is not another; but there be some that trouble you, and would pervert the gospel of Christ.  Gal 1:6-7

 

But he that shall endure unto the end, the same shall be saved. And this gospel of the kingdom

shall be preached in all the world for a witness unto all nations; and then shall the end come.  Matt 24:13-14

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