Introduction: Why Should Baptists Preach Upon the Subject of the Lord's Supper?
(l) It Is Every Pastor's Duty To Instruct His People In Doctrine. (2) True, Earnest Christians, Have a Right To Know the Truth. (3) Pastors Should Want To Deliver Their Churches From the Charge of Bigotry. (4) Close Communion Is Necessary To the Perpetuity of Baptist Churches.
I. LET US OBSERVE WHAT THE LORD'S SUPPER IS.
A. It Is Not a Sacrament. 1. "A formal religious act instituted by Jesus Christ as a means of grace." 2. In no way is there any saving virtue in the Lord's Supper. B. It Is a Memorial Supper. 1. This supper is observed in memory of Christ (l Corinthians 11:25). 2. If it is observed otherwise, it is wrong. C. It is a Church Ordinance and not a Christian Ordinance. 1. The church must act in an organized capacity. a. At Corinth, they were observing the Lord's Supper in groups. b. Paul told them to tarry one for another (l Corinthians 11:33). 2. The church must assemble together (Acts 2:42, 46 and Luke 22:19-20).
II. NEXT, LET US ASK, WHO IS TO COME TO THE TABLE?
A. Anyone Coming Must Be Saved. No one denies this. B. One Must Be Baptised. All Christians agree that baptism must precede the Lord's Supper. C. One Must Have Church Membership. 1. This is logical since it Is a church ordinance. 2. As to what is necessary to church membership, Baptists are divided with the rest of Christianity. D. There Must Be Self-Examination (l Corinthians 11:28-32).
III. WHY IS THE LORD'S SUPPER TO BE OBSERVED?
A. It Is a Command of Christ (l Corinthians 11:25 and Matthew 26). Most folk do not observe it for various reasons (i.e., feeling of unworthiness, etc.). Confession of sin is provided for (l John 1:9). B. It Is a Picture To Help Remember His Shed Blood. Most all of us have pictures of a loved one who is deceased. Servicemen have pictures of their wife, children. The Lord's Supper is a picture of Christ in His death.
IV. HOW IS THE LORD'S SUPPER TO BE OBSERVED?
A. It Is To Be Done Worthily. 1. This has nothing to do with personal worthiness, but rather a worthy manner. 2. It is to be done with reverence and not a mockery. B. What Is Involved In a Worthy Manner of Observing the Lord's Supper? 1. The memory must work. Look back, not to mother nor anyone except Christ. a. Remember Christ on the Cross, dying for sin. b. This does not involve remembering Christ in a cradle. 2. Faith must be exercised. It discerns His body (l Corinthians 11: 27-29). a. Partaking of the elements symbolize faith. b. Faith is appropriating the benefits of His broken body and His shed blood. 3. The hope is exercised. a. We show His death till He comes! b. We look back to His death and forward to the future, c. Justification and glorification are pictured.
Conclusions: Communion is not with each other; it is with the Lord. We fail an important part of our worship when we fail to attend communion services at our church.
======[From Berlin Hisel, Outlines in Systematic Theology, nd., reprinted by Central Baptist Church, Marion, KY. Used with permission; scanned by Jim Duvall.]
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