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Baptism and the Lord’s Supper

June 16, 2006

We are talking baptism and the Lord’s Supper this time around at Ordinary Means.

Let your friends know you can listen here, download directly from this link (right click and save), or subscribe to our iTunes feed.


Here are the June Links:
Note: just because we reference a book, does not necessarily mean we endorse it.

Audio:
Mars Hill Audio with Ken Myers

Books:
Peter Jones of CWIPP
Shedd’s Dogmatic Theology
Reformed Confessions Harmonized by Joel R. Beeke and Sinclair B. Ferguson (
John Stott on posture in worship (Available at All Saints Church website)
Robert Rayburn Jr. on posture in worship (available at Faith Tacoma website)
Blessed are the Hungry by Peter Leithart
Given for You by Keith Mathison
God is the Gospel by john Piper
Calvin’s Institutes

Don’t forget to let us know what you thought. We appreciate your feedback and look forward to answering more of your questions.

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8 Comments leave one →
  1. Anonymous permalink
    June 19, 2006 5:43 pm

    Question: you argue for weekly communion, because it was eaten whenever the apostolic church met. If your church has meets 2x (or more) each Lord’s Day, should they have the sacrament each time?

  2. pastorshaun permalink
    June 21, 2006 1:18 pm

    There would be nothing wrong with doing that, although I would leave that decision up to the elders discretion. There is definitely flexibility in how often we celebrate the Supper. The problem is that many churches simply do not have it often enough to be called ordinary.

    Mike Horton has a great article in Mid-America Journal entitled “At Least Weekly” and Jack Kinneer has a wonderful piece on the Echo Hills Study Center site covering the exegesis of Acts 2.

    Blessings.

  3. Moonshadow permalink
    July 8, 2006 1:22 am

    The image of the young man on a background of Scripture (looks like the psalms) is inspiring, but I have come to find displeasing the saucer of cups, the servings of communion wine.

    Let’s see whether I can explain why this important image troubles me. Not the individual servings themselves, because I realize that ultimately the element was distributed from a common vessel. This method of serving is a mere convenience.

    No, rather, I’m bothered by how I imagine the cups are disposed of afterwards.

    And this preoccupation comes from experience, two separate experiences, of visiting sanctuaries and the immediate vicinity on a weekday following a Sunday Communion service.

    On two occasions, then, I discovered discarded cups. One in a pew, tucked into the tray that holds the books, the Bible and hymnal. Another in a lounge adjacent to the sanctuary, tucked into the couch cushions. Both cups were evidently used, that is, there was a dark, dried liquid in the bottom.

    I don’t expect you to produce explanations for this sort of carelessness. Granted, my church has its own share of communion abuses. And I don’t expect you to alter your Ordinary Means image a bit.

    I’m just sharing a sensibility with you that I didn’t even realize I had until I saw your website’s picture and called to mind those other two experiences.

    In Kevin Smith’s movie, Dogma, there’s a scene in which Cardinal Glick (played by George Carlin) putts into a chalice. For me, that was the most unsettling scene in the entire movie. So, these feelings run very deep and are largely subconscious.

  4. pastorshaun permalink
    July 10, 2006 7:35 pm

    Your statements betray a sensitivity to the things of Christ–which is always good–and perhaps a bit of superstition…but I’m only speculating.

    Jesus chose “ordinary” elements for this feast called the Lord’s Supper. They were things that the people of God had: wine and bread. It didn’t require any special ordering or preparation to have communion.

    That being the case, there were often crumbs on the floor and cups in the sink. That isn’t something to be ashamed of, but an acknowledgement that Jesus meets us in our everyday lives. Once they had been set apart and served, they went back to being wine and bread for everyday use.

    Of course, I too have found–even my own children–playing with the cast away cups and had to direct them: to the trash, please. The fact that you recognized them as communion cups says something about their commonality today that, unfortunately, a chalice no longer carries. I think that may be why I went with the choice of the cups.

    Blessings.

  5. Bettis permalink
    January 8, 2007 3:32 pm

    Gentlemen,

    I have recently found your podcast, via an article on the Internet Monk blog. I appreciate what you are doing – God is certainly ministering to me through this podcast. Since I am new to Ordinary Means, I have been catching up on some of the older episodes, most recently that which covers the topic of the sacraments. I singled out this podcast due to communion questions that had arisen in my own life.

    Would you guys help me with some communion concepts? What does it mean to ‘examine yourself’? What are you looking for? Is it simply salvation that you look to find? Or are you looking to ensure that you are a good-standing member of an Evangelical Church? Even yet, are you looking for something further?

    The same could be said in defining eating “in an unworthy manner’. If I am a repentant Christian that happens to finds myself in the middle of season of temptation (ex. a struggle with pride or greed), am I to abstain from communion?

    Are their concerns with communing with churches that don’t follow a Biblical standard of communion? (ex. When I return home for the holidays, I typically attend my parents’ churches (Southern Baptist) that fail to warn nonbelievers to abstain from communion)

    I would appreciate any thoughts on these topics. Who knows, maybe there are plans for a future podcast concerning communion. If so, we’ll wait until then.

  6. pastorshaun permalink
    January 8, 2007 11:11 pm

    Bettis,

    Great questions well stated! We will definitely be addressing these issues this year. We might even cite you as the asker!

    Thanks for listening!

  7. Raymond McPherson permalink
    August 8, 2007 9:14 am

    As usual, I am at a loss for words after listening to your podcast. Thank you so much for the practical aspects that you bring to the table as well as the theological aspects. Listening to you three talk is so refreshing. It brings life back into the numbness my body endures throughout each week in this pseudo-Christian culture. How I wish that even one of my non-Reformed Christian friends, which are the vast majority, would take the Word and sacraments seriously enough to even have a conversation about them. Thank you so much for everything that you guys say and do to get this message out to Christ’s body.

    Until listening to your podcast, I understood the theological importance for the sacraments, but the way in which you guys speak brings my theology to life. It makes me even more humbled at the importance of the task I’ll have one day if the Lord allows me to go into ministry. Thank you so much for combining theological reasonings with the pastoral care that is needed to administer the Word and sacraments to God’s people. I’m only 6 podcasts in and I’m already forever in your debt due to the things you’ve taught me.

    In Christ,
    Raymond

  8. pastorshaun permalink
    August 8, 2007 8:17 pm

    Wow, Raymond! What a wonderful compliment. I can’t begin to say what an encouragement it is to here you say that. That Matt and I can serve you as a member of the body of Christ in this way is all of Him! Soli Deo Gloria.

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