For those who didn’t grow up in a church named “church of Christ”…

If you are trying to understand where these folks are coming from, I would highly recommend spending some time on the ex-church of Christ website – especially in the “Church of Christ: Doctrine & Culture” board.  There are some insight into this culture for those of us who weren’t raised in it.  

It’s really interesting to me as a person who was raised in a different faith tradition, and you might find it to be so as well.  At the least, it is informative to understanding any hyperconservative churches of Christ that might be in your community.

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Potentially Good Debate Going On…

Well, just like Johnny and company had to go all the way to Los Angeles to find a good sparring partner, our friend Randy has had to go all the way to Texas, because Johnny Robertson, Norm Fields and James Oldfield refuse to grace our blogs with their presence.  Why are they hiding in the shadows?  (LOL)

A Church of Christ pastor (who supports the efforts of our three TV hosts) by the name of Shawn Paden is interacting with us over on Randy’s blog, and so I’d invite folks to wander on over there if you haven’t already and see what’s going on.

churchesofChrist.wordpress.com

Any thoughts on the recent programs, by the way?  

Discussion on the Lord’s Supper

LS 

According to our local Church of Christ on-air TV personalities, we should be taking the Lord’s Supper each first day of the week (Sunday).  If we don’t do this, we are being disobedient, and sinning.

I’d be curious if Johnny Robertson, Norm Fields or James Oldfield would like to substantiate this doctrine, and give arguments in support of this?

Also, I understand that Johnny, Norm and James teach that we must use grape juice. What is the Scriptural justification for this argument?

What Does the Bible Say? December 5, 2007 – Johnny Robertson’s Broadcast

Here's JohnnyJohnny? Where are you?

Tonight we had another repeat. This time, it was a video recording of a meeting that Johnny was hosting at some point – I assume it was one of their tent meetings. I’m not really sure what the point was, as they ran out of time before Johnny could make his conclusion, and so his whole argument fell flat. They love to edit their little denominational preacher videos, so I’m surprised they couldn’t edit this one down to fit in the time constraints of their program.

But, teaching is teaching, even if it isn’t live, and so let’s take a look at what Johnny was talking about tonight.

It seems like his main point was dealing with a person with whom he had been having an online conversation (edit: it turns out that this person Johnny quoted was none other than our very own Randy!  That proves that Johnny has been looking at our blog.  Why won’t he contribute?).  This person had written with two basic questions (my wording):

1) Show me the Scripture that tells you to take the Lord’s Supper each first day of the week.

2) Show me where we are commanded to do so.

Now, Johnny could have answered this quickly, but instead he chose to go all around the block to try and get to his conclusion. The result was that his conclusion was cut off from the broadcast. If he wants to come onto this blog and explain where he was going to end up, that would be greatly appreciated.

So, he said that his job was to help people to believe what they already knew to be true.

To illustrate this, he used three Scripture passages:

Ex 30:8 – where Aaron uses incense in worship.

Numbers 8:5-7 – Where Moses sprinkled folks to make them clean.

Psalms 150 – that David used musical instruments in worship.

Then, he made the point that we don’t believe these things now (which isn’t accurate when you are broadcasting to the community. Some folks will use incense, others will sprinkle, others use musical instruments) and that while the NT doesn’t tell us to do these things, it doesn’t tell us not to. So why not?

Now, I’ll just say here that we’ve discussed the whole musical instruments in worship idea here quite a bit. The argument Johnny makes is not as cut and dry as he’d like to think it was. Just check our archives.

Then Johnny went into Baptism a bit more, and finally brought it around to the actual subject at hand – the Lord’s Supper.

Let me just say this, to answer the original questions:

1) The Scripture doesn’t say that we are to take the Lord’s Supper the first day of the week. Scroll down this blog to the entry entitled, “The Lord’s Supper” to read the thoughts by a Church of Christ gospel preacher.

2) There is no command that tells us to take the Lord’s Supper the first day of the week.

Sola Dei Gloria,

Nathan

The Lord’s Supper

I found a website where a Church of Christ leader is addressing some of the things we discuss here. I am borrowing liberally from that website for this posting, but think it’s important to hear things the way he says them.

LORD’S SUPPER

FACTS

  1. There is no scripture telling us when—or how often– to take communion
  2. There is no proof that the Acts 20:7 passage refers to the Lord’s Supper at all. “Breaking bread” was a term commonly used for eating a common meal (See Acts 2) and could well have been the meaning here.
  3. Even if the occasion involved communion we do not know if they felt any obligation to limit the practice to one particular day….or if it was merely a matter of convenience.
  4. We cannot be sure exactly what day the “breaking bread” occurred. The Jewish day began at sunset and went until the next sunset. They may have met in the afternoon of the first day with the meeting lasting into the night (the second day). Paul preached until midnight and it was after this that they broke bread.
  5. There are only two clear scriptural references to actual observation of the Lord’s Supper. One was when the Lord instituted it and the other was the observance in Corinth. BOTH observances were in conjunction with a meal. There is NO command and NO example of the communion including the bread and fruit of the vine. (the Church of Christ practice surely was borrowed from our predecessors in the Reformation movement—who surely borrowed it from the Roman Catholic Church.)

JOHNNY’S ASSUMPTIONS

  1. Johnny has assumed that Acts 20:7 refers to the Lord’s Supper, that the selection of the first day of the week was based on instruction that they had received, and that it would be wrong to take it any other time.
  2. They are supposed to take communion only on the first day of the week, and it is a sin to take it according to the Jewish reckoning (thereby ruling out Saturday night).
  3. They absolutely must limit the items on the Lord’s Supper table to bread and the fruit of the vine. It is a sin to have any other food items there, such as when Jesus instituted the Supper or when the Corinthians observed it.

MY CONCLUSIONS

  1. The Lord is both intelligent and articulate. He is fully able to tell us what he wants and what he does not want. Since he did not tell us when or how often to take the Lord’s Supper—or in what setting (such as on the occasion of a meal), he leaves it up to our best judgment—and our hearts. It is preposterous to believe that the Lord commanded a Sunday communion in Acts 20:7, forgot to let us know about it—and forgot to get word to us later—and insists that we figure it out by guessing that the example is binding! (the Church of Christ has a lot of intelligent people in their fellowship; it is hard to believe that so many have bought into this incredible idea.)
  2. The over-riding significance of the communion is its role as a memorial to the Lord’s sacrificial suffering and its significance to us. The Christian is free to remember Christ’s suffering any time. There is no prohibited time for commemorating the Lord’s death.
  3. It is very beneficial for a church to come together and observe the Lord’s Supper. The Church of Christ practice of Sunday communion is fully acceptable. There is no reason to suggest a change. BUT there is a reason to object to an assumption-based insistence that it is sinful to observe it any other time—or to have other food items present.