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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.

Dating/Courting part 2


Auxtin
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  • 3 months later...
  • Members

well,
i'm not exactly sure how i believe all the way, but i'll give my beliefs that i have. I agree with what i've read of Joshua Harris' book, I Kissed Dating Goodbye. He puts the emphasis on giving God the glory. When we start sayin, okay i will do this i won't do this, i will go there, i won't go there, we start puttin rules in front of God. Now i agree with everybody, there must be standards. But when you say, i will not consider datin till i'm this old, i will not date this type of person, i must be supervised on dates, and i must abide by men's rules, you choke out a great possibility of God givin you His girl or guy. this has recently happened with me, and has opened up a can of emotions that i've held from girls, because it was "wrong to like a girl at my age." Maybe i like her, and maybe i don't i don't really know, but i have natural feelins towards her. How far i let these feeling progress, since she isn't saved, is up to me. I have a feelin she'll be saved, and when she does, i wouldn't mind dating her. i'm sry but yeah i said i might date her. This sitution is the same as with many other situations in the church today. You can go legalist (as i was) and say dating is wrong and i'm not gonna do it. ha thats funny because God never really labeled dating wrong in the Bible. can you date without lust, which is wrong in the Bible, of course. Can you date without premarital sex, as is termed unpure? Of course. the questions resides on our opinion of pure. If you can show me a scripture in context of pure meaning not kissing, sure i'll believe you. but we major too much on the minors. YOU CAN BE SOUTHERN BAPTIST AND STILL BE FUNDAMENTAL!! fundamentalism is defined as the belief in the 7 fundamental doctrines. SO, if i date does that make me not a fundamental, of course not. most of all, i believe we should seek God's guidance on our situation.
One of my hero's, Billy Sunday, didn't necessarily get his "convictions" from another person, like so many legalists today. He got his convictions from His God....And oh my he wasn't even Baptist. What i'm tryin to say is that God will take care of us, guidelines are good to have, but don't let them shut God off. God can do anything He wants to!!

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Guy/girl relationships is not something that can be put in a neat little box and labeled like a lot of IFB people seem to think it can be. The situation of my boyfriend and I is different to others, and because our circumstances are different, our method will be somewhat different. There are a few distinct rules God has put in the Bible, such as not committing fornication before marriage, and there are ways to guard against that and being pure. He also calls us to purity.

However, to put something in a tiny box and say something like you have to have known someone for a certain amount of time, then he has to ask the girl's parents, then they have to spend a certain amount of time courting before engagement. You know what? That doesn't work for everyone. Why not? My father doesn't want a man to ask him if he can take me out.

My boyfriend and I are striving for purity. My parents know I'm in a relationship with him, and his parents know, and both parents are happy. I've even talked with his father on the phone and online. His church is supportive of the relationship, as is my church. I got him to call a missionary friend of mine whom I trust and that missionary grilled him for like three hours, and then told me he thought very highly of him. That meant a lot to me. He has not hidden things from me. I have spoken to many of his friends, and his preacher. I am studying him. Then, in July, he is flying out to Australia and I will see him for three whole weeks. Yes, I have a long distance relationship, he is in the USA and I am in Australia, but we have been praying together and seperately and believe we are in God's will.

So just because we do things a little differently, we are still striving for purity and God's glory, it doesn't mean that it is wrong. God puts people in different circumstances. God works in people's lives in different ways.

Katy-Anne

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  • 3 weeks later...
  • Members

I personally think that God will show you the right man or woman... and you don't have to be 19 or 27 to find the one you are meant to be with the rest of you life. I am 17 and i am a girl and I know without a doubt in my mind theat the man I am going to marry is in my senior class... I am graduating with him... we went out for a couple months... no dates or anything just sitting by each other .... things like that... we had to break up b/c his parents want him to work on colege (sp) But I know he is the man I am going to marry without a doubt in my mind... Because God told me...... no I am not being stupid.... I am honest....

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  • 7 months later...
  • Independent Fundamental Baptist

So I know this is kind of a dead post now and all, but I had some time today...and its kinda interesting to see what everyone has to say about dating-courting and such. I recently read "I Kissed Dating Goodbye" by Josh Harris. He said some very interesting things, but I can't say that I totally agree with him on everything. I think it is different for each individual couple. My personal thoughts on dating and courting are...Above everything is to keep the Lord first in your own individual life. Also to keep Him at the center and focus of the relationship. If you have good godly parents be sure to ask their advice, and seek their counsel. Also don't give place to the devil...if you know you're in a situation where it will be easy to be tempted...flee that situation! That's why courting is a good thing...there is that accountablity of having other people around you. Anyways..in regards to meeting that special someone...just trust the Lord. He is faithful. Delight in Him, and He will give you the desires of your heart! :)

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  • 1 year later...
  • Members

I haven't read that book or heard about it up until now, but I believe courting is pretty simple. God told us and we all understand that we should be pure in body and to not commit sin. The same also for the mind. Ph. 4:8,"Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, watsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise think on these things." I believe though that we shouldn't play around with temptation...like Joseph. Don't get me wrong, he was a great man of faith, but he went into the house alone knowing that Potipher's wife would be there and allowed her to get close enough to where she was able to grab his coat. Don't play with temptation. My family isn't the most godly family you'd find on the planet and frankly if I started dated someone out of the blue it wouldn't really matter much. Not even the fact that I would have more freedom with that person than any godly parent would deem suitable. If I had a boyfriend he wouldn't want to meet my stepfather and I wouldn't want him to meet him either! It's understood that not everyone has the "picture perfect" life. But you can make it as less tempting as possible! Seek God first, then godly counsel. If you're parents can't be it then look to the church! Besides kissing and hugging and holding hands dating? ... That leaves plenty of room for a broken heart, thoughts that you can't get out of the mind, the corruption of the mind, and room for lots of sin. No thanks. ^ ^ I'm saving it ALL for the altar! :Bleh

BTW: I don't believe Jesus would go around kissing and hugging his girlfriend before marriage...

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  • 13 years later...
  • Members
On 1/9/2006 at 11:53 AM, pneu-engine said:

[quote]
uh... what about those of us who don't have Christian parents? I know for a fact that any guy who would ever even possibly think about working in the ministry or who goes to a Christian college would be off my dad's "ok" list.
[/quote]

In that case you have to go with God as your Heavenly Father, and still honor and respect your earthly father, but definitely don't go for his "pick".

Is this a quote from Scripture? > "Fools rush in" ?  

Well,   so let it be, if it is.

Remember a few centuries ago when arranged marriages were standard part of normal daily life ?

That sure worked a lot better than almost anything done today, eh ?

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