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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.

John 10:31-35


BaptistLady02
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BaptistLady

I did not read the web site posted but I have actually used those verses to witness to Mormons and JW?s.

You see Jesus makes a clear claim to have written the Old Testament. ?Is it not written in your law (get this) I Said ye are gods?. Who wrote the Old Testament? God! Who took total ownership of what was said? Jesus!

The actual quote comes from Psalm 82:6 and is in part the discourse by God through Asaph to the civil magistrates of the time. Its clear meaning is that the magistrates were made to be like God in that they had the authority to judge righteously within the Jewish community. God wanted them to know that they were issuing judgments among the people because he had given them the authority to do so and for no other reason. The people treated them (the magistrates) like gods but verse 7 is clear don?t let it go to your head for you are mortal and will die just like any other man and fall just like any prince who gets a big head.

Psalms 82:6-7 I have said, Ye are gods; and all of you are children of the most High. But ye shall die like men, and fall like one of the princes.

Orvals

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Hi everyone. If this is the wrong forum, please move it.

Anyway, I'm talking to a Mormon and he brought up this verse. He is using it to support the Mormon doctrine that we can become gods. What should I say in response to this? :puzzled:


Hi. I was a Mormon at one time. I was baptized in the temple in Syracuse, NY at age 9. Let me tell you, you can't answer it because it's pure private interpretation on their part.

Just read to them Psalm 82:6,7:


6: I have said, Ye are gods; and all of you are children of the most High.

7: BUT YE SHALL DIE LIKE MEN, and fall like one of the princes.
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Hi

What Wilchbla said.

The mormons ive witnessed to, (usually missionaries) upon finding out im Baptist, will start talking and trying to quote scripture from the KJV. The verses they used were taught to them out of context and isolated. They are not taught the bible as they say, only small parts of it. I know a few ex mormons who are saved now and have great ministries. They all discovered the truth by studying the KJV and seeing the truth.

The last ones I talked to I had to find the verses for them in the bible. One of them could not find the book of 1 Peter. I challenged them to read John and Romans and come back to me. Of Course they never did. :sad

Keep praying for them and challenging them to read the Bible alone and come to Church. God gives the increase. :smile

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BaptistLady,

My father-in-law joined LDS several years ago and hit me with all this stuff. Here is the verse in question:

Jhn 10:34 Jesus answered them, Is it not written in your law, I said, Ye are gods?

which is a N.T. ref to this verse:

Psa 82:6 I have said, Ye [are] gods; and all of you [are] children of the most High.

The word "gods" here is the Hebrew word, 'elohiym which strongs defines in the plural sense as follows:
1) (plural)
a) rulers, judges
B) divine ones
c) angels
d) gods

So which sense is used in this Psalm, which Jesus refered to in John 10?

Psa 82:1 [[A Psalm of Asaph.]] God standeth in the congregation of the mighty; he judgeth among the gods.
Psa 82:2 How long will ye judge unjustly, and accept the persons of the wicked? Selah.
Psa 82:3 Defend the poor and fatherless: do justice to the afflicted and needy.
Psa 82:4 Deliver the poor and needy: rid [them] out of the hand of the wicked.
Psa 82:5 They know not, neither will they understand; they walk on in darkness: all the foundations of the earth are out of course.
Psa 82:6 I have said, Ye [are] gods; and all of you [are] children of the most High.

Obviously, contextually (which is something they know nothing about) we are talking about elohims, judges. Furthermore, their own ace theologian Bruce E. McConky said these passages in Psalms and John mean judges and not deity. I will find out the name of the book and the page number (which as I recall is page, 501.)

I'll post more on this later, I have a GREAT ONE for you to share with you Mormon friends.

Bro. Ben

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I have spent many years researching other faiths/religions, of which the LDS (Mormons) is one. Part of the reason it gets complicated to get into a shared Bible study is because the bible they utilize is the IV (or Inspired Version) which was written by Joseph Smith, Jr. (and although similar to the KJV is way, way different in many areas, especially in Genesis with two different creation stories, for one example). The other problem in these discussions is that this is not their main Scripture of Doctrine, rather they utilize three scriptures - mainly the Book of Mormon, the Inspired Version of the bible and then the Doctrine and Covenants. The third is considered to be a like a book of continued revelation of phrophecy that started with JSmith & they keep adding to, and this particular book is where they turn for much of their beliefs as well as the Book of Mormon.

Although the people in this faith are very friendly and kind, it can get increasingly complicated to Bible study with them because these are the only materials they are familiar with. The theology is interesting, that's for sure, but in my findings they seem to focus quite a bit on the Prophet/President of the church and his importance - which iseems to be of the highest regard, from the first Joseph Smith Jr, to the current (within the actual church settings) as they do on their doctrines.

I find the key when discussing scripture with LDS folks is patience (and knowing about or some of their scripture materials helps and/or history), however, once you invite them in they (in my own personal experience) will try to bring others(in mass groups) with them and try and convert you. I'm a strong woman though and I know my scriptures well, so even when then entires ladies league showed up at my door, it was juice - cookies - and bible study(that is not iv), and conversion tactics get left outside or please go home.
But it was overall a very interesting experience learning about their faith and theology first hand.

Blessings,
Sandra

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When a Mormon doesn't like what the Bible says he goes to the Book of Mormon.

When he doesn't like what the Book of Mormon says he goes to the Doctrines and Covenants.

When he doesn't like what the Doctrine and Covenants says he goes to the Pearl of Great Price.

When he doesn't like what the Pearl of Great Price says he goes to the Journal of Discourses.

When they don't like what the Journal of Discourses says he goes to the President of the LDS Church.

When he doesn't like what the LDS President says he goes to the "Twelve Apostles" in Salt Lake City.

You see, the way to always get around the truth is to have conflicting authorities. I can actually show a Mormon a verse in the Book of Mormon that teaches a man must be born again yet he'll just fall back on another authority within his own church to refute it. The best way to get around the truth is to have multiple conflicting authorities.

Oh, and even the Book of Mormon has gone through many changes itself to rid it of controversial passages like attaining eternal life by practicing polygamy.

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