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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.

The Scandal Rocking the Evangelical World


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4 hours ago, Bouncing Bill said:

Sorry, you are becoming upset and posting implied insults. I showed examples from history and would like for you to do the same.

You are right, this is about the SBC. You brought history into it with your post about the Socialist Democratic party. Let's go back to the SBC.

Me? Upset? Not by a longshot, my friend. I don't get upset. That's one problem with trying to communicate with just a keyboard and monitor! LOL Never have liked this type of format. I'd rather do face to face discussions. One can't really guage people's emotions and personalities through screens and keyboards. Peace to you. 

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1 hour ago, BrotherTony said:

Me? Upset? Not by a longshot, my friend. I don't get upset. That's one problem with trying to communicate with just a keyboard and monitor! LOL Never have liked this type of format. I'd rather do face to face discussions. One can't really guage people's emotions and personalities through screens and keyboards. Peace to you. 

Yes, cold print on the cool screen does not carry inflection and expression well. Face-to-face is much better. But we cannot sit and talk. It would be interesting.  

I hope the actions at the SBC convention are not distressing. It will be interesting to see how things unfold at the convention. I am somewhat disturbed by the approach some conservatives seem to be taking as next week nears. But, like I said earlier the SBC left me years ago and I, sadly, do not see them moving toward the stances taken and taught as a kid. 

 

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1 hour ago, Bouncing Bill said:

Yes, cold print on the cool screen does not carry inflection and expression well. Face-to-face is much better. But we cannot sit and talk. It would be interesting.  

I hope the actions at the SBC convention are not distressing. It will be interesting to see how things unfold at the convention. I am somewhat disturbed by the approach some conservatives seem to be taking as next week nears. But, like I said earlier the SBC left me years ago and I, sadly, do not see them moving toward the stances taken and taught as a kid. 

 

I fully agree on your premise the the SBC won't move back towards conservative values. I don't see this happening. It's sad, but most likely true. It's not even the same SBC that I joined 21 years ago. I'm not sure how much longer my wife and I will be staying in an SBC church. I'm finding that I cannot support many of the things that are going on within the cooperative program entities, and the way people are dividing over it, slicing and dicing each other over secondary issues when they should be trying to rectify the major issues facing the SBC.

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14 hours ago, BrotherTony said:

I fully agree on your premise the the SBC won't move back towards conservative values. I don't see this happening. It's sad, but most likely true. It's not even the same SBC that I joined 21 years ago. I'm not sure how much longer my wife and I will be staying in an SBC church. I'm finding that I cannot support many of the things that are going on within the cooperative program entities, and the way people are dividing over it, slicing and dicing each other over secondary issues when they should be trying to rectify the major issues facing the SBC.

What I fear is they will become more political and less Jesus centered, more Southern GOP and less gospel centered. 

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22 minutes ago, PastorMatt said:

@BrotherTony Was there a big conference yesterday (15,000 or so) where the SBC was deciding the future? I thought I saw Gerald Wolfe post something on facebook about being there.

Yes the annual convention and they have elected a new president. I'll post an article about that in this forum.

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2 hours ago, PastorMatt said:

@BrotherTony Was there a big conference yesterday (15,000 or so) where the SBC was deciding the future? I thought I saw Gerald Wolfe post something on facebook about being there.

It's possible Gerald was there. I tried to watch as much of it as I could on my laptop, but I didn't watch as much as I would have liked. Our internet connections out here in the boondocks isn't really great, even if it IS fiber optic! 🙄  I correspond with many who were there, one being the man who is being sued by Kevin Ezell and the NAMB, along with the ERLC and is setting before the SCOTUS right now, waiting to be heard on the 17th (tomorrow) of this month. His name is Dr, Will McRaney. It's heartbreaking to see that things between SBC entities and persons is going before the unsaved. But, sometimes it's the only way to handle it when everything else has failed. I live just an hour S of Nashville, TN in a small town near Murfreesboro. I wish I could have been there as a messenger, but I don't think it would have made any difference. 

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2 hours ago, PastorMatt said:

@BrotherTony Was there a big conference yesterday (15,000 or so) where the SBC was deciding the future? I thought I saw Gerald Wolfe post something on facebook about being there.

Yes, they voted to add the book "White Fragility" to the canon of scripture.

Reparations are next.

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10 minutes ago, SureWord said:

Yes, they voted to add the book "White Fragility" to the canon of scripture.

Reparations are next.

I hate some of the things they are doing. Overall, I do like the premise of missions cooperation to get more missionaries to the field. But looking at some of the things that the SBC's universities and colleges are teaching, I'm wondering just what these missionaries are preaching to people around the world that isn't compatible with the Word. I know that there really is no accountability to the churches, just to the missions board that sent them out, and the missions boards can tell them how long they'll be where they are, or recall them for "safety reasons." I've watched this being done, and it's very disturbing to see that they seem to have more power than the Lord's leading in these areas. UGH! 

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1 hour ago, BrotherTony said:

I hate some of the things they are doing. Overall, I do like the premise of missions cooperation to get more missionaries to the field. But looking at some of the things that the SBC's universities and colleges are teaching, I'm wondering just what these missionaries are preaching to people around the world that isn't compatible with the Word. I know that there really is no accountability to the churches, just to the missions board that sent them out, and the missions boards can tell them how long they'll be where they are, or recall them for "safety reasons." I've watched this being done, and it's very disturbing to see that they seem to have more power than the Lord's leading in these areas. UGH! 

They are replacing the old time religion with a new age one.

They are replacing sinners with racists and the only racists will be whites and blacks who dare leave the progressive plantation. 

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3 hours ago, SureWord said:

They are replacing the old time religion with a new age one.

They are replacing sinners with racists and the only racists will be whites and blacks who dare leave the progressive plantation. 

Racism and being a racist is a sin.

 

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  • Independent Fundamental Baptist
On 6/16/2021 at 2:35 PM, Bouncing Bill said:

Racism and being a racist is a sin.

 

I have a different take on this.  Since there is only one race of people, I call it bigotry.  Bigotry is hatred which of course is a sin, unless one is hating evil.

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2 hours ago, swathdiver said:

I have a different take on this.  Since there is only one race of people, I call it bigotry.  Bigotry is hatred which of course is a sin, unless one is hating evil.

The word 'race' can  be used with either meaning. It is not restricted as you indicate. 

 Race is a grouping of humans based on shared physical or social qualities into categories generally viewed as distinct by society. 

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On 7/4/2021 at 9:28 AM, Bouncing Bill said:

The word 'race' can  be used with either meaning. It is not restricted as you indicate. 

 Race is a grouping of humans based on shared physical or social qualities into categories generally viewed as distinct by society. 

I believe you're speaking of "ethnicity," not race. I don't see where God created any race other than the human race. It all started with Adam, so there IS only one...the human race.

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10 minutes ago, BrotherTony said:

I believe you're speaking of "ethnicity," not race. I don't see where God created any race other than the human race. It all started with Adam, so there IS only one...the human race.

Check the dictionary. Yes, there is a human race. However, in English race can mean a particular group of people who share common physical characteristics. So the word, in English, can be used several ways. 

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Posted (edited)
7 minutes ago, Bouncing Bill said:

Check the dictionary. Yes, there is a human race. However, in English race can mean a particular group of people who share common physical characteristics. So the word, in English, can be used several ways. 

If we go by the English dictionary...yes. If we go by the Bible...NO!

 

 

Edited by BrotherTony
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28 minutes ago, BrotherTony said:

If we go by the English dictionary...yes. If we go by the Bible...NO!

 

 

I do not believe that statement holds. If we are going to be literal I am not sure the word 'race' appears in the Bible when talking about people or groups of people. In the King James Bible the word race appears 5 times and in each instance it is talking about running a race. 

Psalms 19:5 | View whole chapter | See verse in context
Which is as a bridegroom coming out of his chamber, and rejoiceth as a strong man to run a race.
Ecclesiasticus 26:21 | View whole chapter | See verse in context
So thy race which thou leavest shall be magnified, having the confidence of their good descent.
1 Corinthians 9:24 | View whole chapter | See verse in context
Know ye not that they which run in a race run all, but one receiveth the prize? So run, that ye may obtain.
Hebrews 12:1 | View whole chapter | See verse in context
Wherefore seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us,
Ecclesiastes 9:11 | View whole chapter | See verse in context
I returned, and saw under the sun, that the race is not to the swift, nor the battle to the strong, neither yet bread to the wise, nor yet riches to men of understanding, nor yet favour to men of skill; but time and chance happeneth to them all.

Also good Baptist sources do not agree with you.

https://www.biblegateway.com/resources/encyclopedia-of-the-bible/Race

https://obu.edu/stories/blog/2020/06/what-does-the-bible-say-about-race.php

 

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3 minutes ago, Bouncing Bill said:

I do not believe that statement holds. If we are going to be literal I am not sure the word 'race' appears in the Bible when talking about people or groups of people. In the King James Bible the word race appears 5 times and in each instance it is talking about running a race. 

Psalms 19:5 | View whole chapter | See verse in context
Which is as a bridegroom coming out of his chamber, and rejoiceth as a strong man to run a race.
Ecclesiasticus 26:21 | View whole chapter | See verse in context
So thy race which thou leavest shall be magnified, having the confidence of their good descent.
1 Corinthians 9:24 | View whole chapter | See verse in context
Know ye not that they which run in a race run all, but one receiveth the prize? So run, that ye may obtain.
Hebrews 12:1 | View whole chapter | See verse in context
Wherefore seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us,
Ecclesiastes 9:11 | View whole chapter | See verse in context
I returned, and saw under the sun, that the race is not to the swift, nor the battle to the strong, neither yet bread to the wise, nor yet riches to men of understanding, nor yet favour to men of skill; but time and chance happeneth to them all.

Also good Baptist sources do not agree with you.

https://www.biblegateway.com/resources/encyclopedia-of-the-bible/Race

https://obu.edu/stories/blog/2020/06/what-does-the-bible-say-about-race.php

 

Again, BB....you're intentionally being obtuse and trying to play "word games" instead of going with the principle teaching of the Bible. God only created one race...and that's literal enough for me. Please, feel free to be literal in one thing and figurative in others. UGH!

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