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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.

Jehovah's Witness


Potatochip
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Was tracting today in a very hispanic area and ran into some Jehovah's witnesses setting up at an Hispanic shopping center.  Of course I got the very very very polite.  No thank you to my (our) tracts.  1 Tim 3:16 the way to start a conversation with those people.   They do upset me to a degree because they love setting up in public places distributing their really bad error.  So I'm not kind all the time either.  That gang in Brooklyn has quite a scheme going and I let them know that in no uncertain terms.  What I think of their "organizers"  is not much.

Jehovah's witness's in my opinion are so polite and good in appearance it defies reality.  They kind of remind me of moonies however they are well dressed.  They don't seem to have all that much success however.   You don't run into many of them when your out witnessing.  

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Potatochip is correct.

21 hours ago, Potatochip said:

Jehovah's witness's in my opinion are so polite and good in appearance it defies reality.  They kind of remind me of moonies however they are well dressed.  They don't seem to have all that much success however.   You don't run into many of them when your out witnessing.  

The J.W.s' tend to be polite and try to deliberately to attract folks who have a professed Christian, or religious, background, who are not grounded in the doctrines of the faith. The J'W's normally do not go after saints who are grounded in the faith. They try and attract weak grounded saints, saints who are disgruntled with the church they are attending, or a lot of folks who are only professing Christians.

William J. Schnell was in the Jehovah's Witnesses' for over thirty years and worked himself up to the upper echelon's of the organization. After William Schnell left the J.W.'s, in 1954, he wrote a book, "Thirty Years  A Watchtower Slave." In the book, Schnell says this, "The Watch Tower leadership sensed that within the midst of Christendom were many millions of professing Chrstians who were not well grounded in the "truths one delivered to the saints," and who would be rather easily pried loose from the churches and led into a new and revitalized Watch Tower Organization. The Society calculated, and that rightly, that this lack of proper knowledge of God and the widespread acceptance of half-truths in Christendom, would yield vast masses of men and women, if the whole matter were wisely attacked, the attack sustained, and the results contained, and then reused in an overwidening circle."  (Thirty Years A Watchtower Slave," Baker Book House, Grand Rapids, Michigan,1957page 19). 

The main source of potential converts for the J.W.'s are doctrinaly weak professing Christians.

16 hours ago, Jim_Alaska said:

They do unfortunately have a lot of success. They now number in the millions worldwide.

Jim Alaska is correct. We meet J.W's all the time while passing out tracts. They will not talk with us much as they want to spend their time and effort on weak professing Christians or those who are disgruntled with a church. The J.W.s will with a very polite smile, once they know we know what we are talkng about, refuse the tract, and walk away. The J.W.s know that for every grounded in the word saint there are multitudes ungrounded.

 

Edited by Alan
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On 3/11/2017 at 8:10 PM, Potatochip said:

Was tracting today in a very hispanic area and ran into some Jehovah's witnesses setting up at an Hispanic shopping center.  Of course I got the very very very polite.  No thank you to my (our) tracts.  1 Tim 3:16 the way to start a conversation with those people.   They do upset me to a degree because they love setting up in public places distributing their really bad error.  So I'm not kind all the time either.  That gang in Brooklyn has quite a scheme going and I let them know that in no uncertain terms.  What I think of their "organizers"  is not much.

Jehovah's witness's in my opinion are so polite and good in appearance it defies reality.  They kind of remind me of moonies however they are well dressed.  They don't seem to have all that much success however.   You don't run into many of them when your out witnessing.  

I accept their literature, and throw it away later so their theological poison doesn't end up in the hands of a biblically illiterate Christian.

They are very nice people and I respect their zeal. They put much of the Christian world to shame when it comes to sharing their message, even though it false.

You mentioned the gang (Governing Body) in Brooklyn, but their headquarters is now in Walkill and Patterson, New York. They sold all their Brooklyn buildings for millions of dollars.

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Yes, their headquarters was moved very recently. One of the reasons that their agenda may put Christians to shame is that their whole thrust is door knocking and getting their published material in the hands of people.

Their services are almost totally geared toward how to approach people, talk to them, offer bible studies, fish for return visits. It is all an indoctrination process that reminds you of a Mary Kay recruitment seminar.

They even put on "dog and pony" shows during their services where two people will put on a skit, one being the JW and the other being the householder. The whole point of the skit is to show their people how easy it is to approach people and what to say.

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That's true, but in Australia at least that is one of the reasons why people WON'T open the door to you.

As soon as they see you holding something that even looks "Religious" they assume you are a JW or Mormon (another group that is big on this), and over ehre they will not even open the door - or they close it mid sentence once they hear the word "Church".

Their way of going about it has ruined it for us.

We have to find ways around it.

On the odd occasion that we can talk to someone - usually if they are out front gardening or similar - they express relief when they find out we are not JW's.

It is a real problem for many areas of Australia.

But you cannot knock their zeal for their false ways.......

 

Mind you, if you can knock them off their spiel, you can get them lost and bumbling - but getting them to see their need for salvation is often hard, as they quickly close off and leave if you confuse them.

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8 hours ago, Jim_Alaska said:

Their services are almost totally geared toward how to approach people, talk to them, offer bible studies, fish for return visits. It is all an indoctrination process that reminds you of a Mary Kay recruitment seminar.

We had a lady come through our church who had been in the JWs for a while. She and I were out door knocking, and we encountered a polite, but disinterested lady who chatted a few sentences with us. As soon as the door closed, my partner told me that 'she was very interested and we should come back'. It was weird - like the fact that the woman actually spoke to us was qualifications for a return visit. (The woman was definitely NOT interested, btw.)

 

6 hours ago, DaveW said:

As soon as they see you holding something that even looks "Religious" they assume you are a JW or Mormon (another group that is big on this), and over ehre they will not even open the door - or they close it mid sentence once they hear the word "Church".

Lol... that's the same reason we make sure to emphasize 'Baptist' early in the conversation. People around here generally won't close their door once they've opened it (polite Canadians and all that), but they'll be visibly relieved to find we're not JW/Mormons! :-D

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In another post, I was talking about a young couple in our church that had recently had a short text batle with my wife and I. Well we got it fixed, apologies all 'round for us overstepping our boundaires and them getting mad and ignoring my teachings, BUT, in the process, they agreed to attend the local(ish) Kingdom Hall for a meeting, with a notorious JW in our community who really, is a BAD person-not even one of the 'nice' JW's: con-man, smoker, drunk, almost talked me into giving him the five-fold ministry from running his mouth at me one day. So I told them it was a bad idea, but hey, they are grown ups, do as they please. So, Sunday, (and before that), my wife and I prayed for their protection, and that what they had been taught would take hold. I didn't expect to see them for evening service.

However, they surprised me and showed up, and didn't have a single good thing to say about their experience. They said everyone was "really-really nice" (love-bombing, the JW's call it), but they said it was boring-the message was read from a book, and had a follow up for about 1/2 hour from the current Watchtower magazine. I came to find out that, despite their hatred toward the Catholics, they do business almost exactly as the Catholics do: the message is prepared and sent to ALL halls, for use that same Sunday, as well as the reading. There is a question time, but even the answers are very closely controlled and anyone who goes into places they don't want has their mics turned off and they are ignored. If they keep 'causing trouble', they are kicked out. So, praise God they were protected from their own folly and came away with what seems to be a somewhat renewed interest in our church.

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Sometimes I get pretty blunt with them.  Telling them they belong to a cult and are suckers for working for the exclusive group of leaders.  Their real estate holdings are vast.  Asked once I guess Ray Kroc of McDonald's fame said lol I'm not in the hamburger game but real estate.  Mcdonald's has vast real estate holdings.  That gives you an idea in addition to the publishing fees how well that gang of thieves makes out that run the Jehovah's witnesses.  No one is nice like that all the time a lot of that is feigned in my opinion.  

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Getting blunt with them is hardly likely to help them to turn to Christ.  They are told what they have to believe and not to think for themselves.  The main thing is to try to get them to think.  For intance JWs say Jesus is not God.  Ask them to read from their bible Acts 25 "For David says respecting him, 'I had Jehovah constanty before my eyes' "  You could ask them who they thought David was speaking about?  They may say they will have to ask and then return, but that is unlikely, So ask them, "But what do you think?"  if they give an evasive answer ask them to read from verse 22 and say again, who is David speaking about?"  (Jesus the Nazarene)  Ask them againn who they think David is referring to.  Try to get them to think for themselves, don't try to tell them what it means.  And only use their bible.  If you use any other, they will just switch off.   Same with Catholics. I once read a book entitled "The Catholic Bible has the answer" which showed you can preach salvation from their version.  Remember that the KJV is hated and preached against by the RCC,  It is the only version not on sale at the so called "Catholic Truth Society"

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Simply rebuking them spreading their error.  If it was a Hindu I probably would not do that.  Nothing wrong with pointing out common sense things either.  Like they are suckers for the higher ups.   These people are actively out there like Catholics aren't.  Also recruiting lol on my turf too.   The KJV leaves them without much answer also.  I don't use those other versions.

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Yes, the Public Talk and the Watchtower at the Kingdom Halls are EXTREMELY boring. The Watchtower (Study edition not the Public one) articles are just different stories of the same doctrines over and over. The Watchtower is like reading a third grade level book, and the questions are child like too. It's obvious what the answers are but by getting them to say it out loud is just one of many of their mind control methods. Even the so called "Public Talk" is controlled. The,person giving the talk is given an outline that they have to use. Really the only thing the speaker adds to the talk is his own experiences on whatever topic it is.

I liked your comment of them hating Roman Catholicism, but in reality they are organized very similar. They both have the idea that you can't understand the Bible completely without the higher ranks TELLING you what the Bible says. 

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They are so hard to witness to because as said above, their entire religion is based upon NOT thinking, NOT ever questioning, NOT checking the evidence and reading the book for what it says. Never look at their history of date-making and their constant failures. ANY questioning of the status quo leads to immediate removal and shunning by family and friends. They will encourage even divorce if one spouse leaves the 'church'.

And then of course, there is their big money operation: salvation is based upon how much work one does, how many tracts and watchtowers and Awakes are passed out, and of course, ALL of them must be purchased and one's purchases are recorded-if you buy enough and give out enough, you'll hear about it. Any sort of salvation, such as it is, is dependent upon the organization, not a relationship with the Saviour. Noe going to Heaven if not one of the 144,000, and of course, no hell, no punishment, just blinked out of existence. 

What a mess!

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4 hours ago, Ukulelemike said:

They are so hard to witness to because as said above, their entire religion is based upon NOT thinking, NOT ever questioning, NOT checking the evidence and reading the book for what it says. Never look at their history of date-making and their constant failures. ANY questioning of the status quo leads to immediate removal and shunning by family and friends. They will encourage even divorce if one spouse leaves the 'church'.

And then of course, there is their big money operation: salvation is based upon how much work one does, how many tracts and watchtowers and Awakes are passed out, and of course, ALL of them must be purchased and one's purchases are recorded-if you buy enough and give out enough, you'll hear about it. Any sort of salvation, such as it is, is dependent upon the organization, not a relationship with the Saviour. Noe going to Heaven if not one of the 144,000, and of course, no hell, no punishment, just blinked out of existence. 

What a mess!

Absolutely! I agree they nearly impossible to witness to. The Governing Body uses many mind control techniques to take away their ability to think for themselves, and anything contradictory to Watchtower teachings is believed to be of Satan.

I am convinced it's all a money scam. There is no way anyone can convince me that the Governing Body isn't aware of their past false prophecies. and know Jesus is not physically directing them.

When they changed their policy to offering magazines to "voluntarily" donations to avoid tax laws, they had a back up scam in waiting. Today the individual Kingdom Halls pay for all the literature they receive, and when they get a donation it is sent back to the Society even though it's already paid for. They are double dipping.

By far the largest reason I believe it's a scam is because of their Biblical interpretations. Even a novice Bible reader could discern that Acts 15:20 has NOTHING to do with not accepting blood transfusions. Such an interpretation is false and borderline idiotic! They only way a person could read the Bible and come up with their interpretations would be by using one of their publications as a guide. Period.

 

 

 

Edited by Disciple.Luke
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5 minutes ago, 1Timothy115 said:

The last one who came to my door, a man, brought his son with him. This was a new tactic I had not seen before. I wonder if that gets them more invitations to come inside.

Yeah many of them go out door to door as a family unit. How old was the kid?

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