"We see, in many a land, the proudest dynasties and tyrannies still crushing, with their mountain weight, every free motion of the Consciences and hearts of men. We see, on the other hand, the truest heroism for the right and the greatest devotion to the Truth in hearts that God has touched. We have a work to do, as great as our forefathers and, perhaps, far greater. The enemies of Truth are more numerous and subtle than ever and the needs of the Church are greater than at any preceding time. If we are not debtors to the present, then men were never debtors to their age and their time. Brethren, we are debtors to the hour in which we live. Oh, that we might stamp it with Truth and that God might help us to impress upon its wings some proof that it has not flown by neglected and unheeded." -- C.H. Spurgeon . . . "If ye continue in my word, then are ye my disciples indeed; And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free." John 8:31, 32

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Saturday, August 24, 2013

A STUDY IN ACTS TWO:42 - FOUR FACETS in the FUNCTION of the CHURCH

THIRD FACET in the FUNCTION of the CHURCH:

Breaking of Bread/Communion – as taught by Kyle Peart

Let’s go ahead and turn to 1 Cor. 11th chapter; the title we have is . . .

Breaking of Bread: Commune or Commune?

Here we have a classic twist on the English language. Two words (homonyms) that look the same but have completely different meanings.

● To commune (verb; commune): to be intimate or fellowship
● A commune (noun; commune): community of people living together

So what does that have to do with our teaching?

Well, when we get into Acts 2:42 we read that there was fruit which revealed who the
disciples were. That’s why we’re doing this four part study. We examined
doctrine, fellowship and now the breaking of bread [Lastly will be prayer, by Josh Boubion].

The issue is that just as you have some teachings out there telling you the wrong way to
pray and other weird doctrines, we also have different meanings and doctrines for “communion”.
We want to make sure that we are biblical in our definitions and our practices.
From the early part of Jesus’ ministry before the actual (seder) meal known as the Last Supper all the way to today we see teachings that lead to misunderstandings and people then can’t grasp a correct understanding of what Jesus meant when He spoke on this topic.

Now of course I made a play on words (commune and commune) but if you break down the two major different teachings we see today, you will see that I wasn’t far off.
To commune means to be intimate, to have fellowship which is where we get the word
communion. We come together and we participate in an intimacy with the Lord.

In 2 Corinthians, the 6th chapter we see the Holy Spirit distinguish the way light can not commune with dark. It is impossible. They are polar opposites!

2 CORINTHIANS 6:14-16
14 Be ye not unequally yoked together with unbelievers: for what fellowship hath righteousness with unrighteousness? and what communion hath light with darkness?
15 And what concord hath Christ with Belial? or what part hath he that believeth with an infidel?
16 And what agreement hath the temple of God with idols? for ye are the temple of the living God; as God hath said, I will dwell in them, and walk in them; and I will be their God, and they shall be my people
.

1 JOHN 1:5
This then is the message which we have heard of him, and declare unto you, that God is light, and in him is no darkness at all
.

EPHESIANS 5:8
For ye were sometimes darkness, but now are ye light in the Lord: walk as children of light
:

A commune is a community of people living together. Now this second definition related to the idea of ‘communion’ that I’m going to touch on isn’t talking about a community of people living together but about one Person living in an object, that is, a ‘host’.

I don’t want to exhaust this point because the heart of communion is to know the Lord and know the truth; but along with that it’s so important to know the error in order to protect and edify the sheep especially since so many in the church today (Protestants and Evangelicals) are accepting these false teachings.

If you want to do a personal study and read the whole teaching of the Roman Catholic Church, all you have to do is go pick up a Catechism and you’ll see the teachings of
communion or as they call it the Eucharist. It’s a fairly small portion which is only about 28 pages and it’s not shy about their beliefs!

So when you hear the term Eucharist, what that means according to Roman Catholic dogma is that the bread and wine actually becomes via the process of transubstantiation that transforms (inwardly) the elements of bread and wine into the very flesh and blood of Jesus Christ, and thus the Eucharist. The word itself means in Latin “Thanksgiving” but the teaching of the Eucharist is this:

“. . . the body and blood, together with the soul and divinity of our Lord Jesus Christ and therefore, the whole Christ is truly, really, and substantially contained." 1374 CCC

In 1375 of the Catechism it says:

“It is by the conversion of the bread and wine into Christ's body and blood; that Christ becomes present in this sacrament. The Church Fathers strongly affirmed the faith of the Church in the efficacy of the Word of Christ and of the action of the Holy Spirit to bring about this conversion.


Thus St. John Chrysostom declares:

“It is not man that causes the things offered to become the Body and Blood of Christ, but he who was crucified for us, Christ himself. The priest, in the role of Christ, pronounces these words, but their power and grace are God's. This is my body, he says. This word transforms the things offered.”

So taught from these dogmas, the words the priests actually performs a ritual and pronounces a mantra, saying “This is my body, This is my blood” over and over again and Christ comes down and replaces the bread and wine with Himself.

Biblically we see so many errors with this and for the sake of time we won’t get all into it* but if I’m hearing correctly, this sounds like witchcraft. To say a “specific spell” and bring something from the spiritual into the physical is by definition witchcraft and there is nothing scriptural about Christians believing and acting this way!

Also, lets look at the fact that they’re teaching cannibalism; yet when reading their
apologetic arguments on this, they refer to John Ch. 6, so to get a better understand let’s go ahead (and save your place in 1 Corinthians 11) and turn there.

*For information regarding the dogmas of the Roman Catholic Church, please review the TTUF the first two articles of The Roman Catholic Church: Its Dogma and Destiny.

Part One

Part Two

JOHN 6:51-59
51 I am the living bread which came down from heaven: if any man eat of this bread, he shall live for ever: and the bread that I will give is my flesh, which I will give for the life of the world.
52 The Jews therefore strove among themselves, saying, How can this man give us his flesh to eat?
53 Then Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Except ye eat the flesh of the Son of man, and drink his blood, ye have no life in you.
54Whoso eateth myflesh, and drinketh my blood, hath eternal life; and I will raise him up at the last day.
55For my flesh is meat indeed, and my blood is drink indeed.
56He that eateth my flesh, and drinketh my blood, dwelleth in me, and I in him.
57As the living Father hath sent me, and I live by the Father: so he that eateth me, even he shall live by me.
58 This is that bread which came down from heaven: not as your fathers did eat manna, and are dead: he that eateth of this bread shall live for ever.
59 These things said he in the synagogue, as he taught in Capernaum
.

And after that it reads in vs. 60: many therefore of his disciples when they heard this grabbed a fork and knife and ate him.

NO, they said this is “an hard saying who can hear it?”!

Keep reading . . .

JOHN 6:61-­63

61 When Jesus knew in himself that his disciples murmured at it, he said unto them, Doth this offend you?
62 What and if ye shall see the Son of man ascend up where he was
before?
63 It is the spirit that quickeneth; the flesh profiteth nothing: the words that I speak unto you, they are spirit, and they are life
.

Jesus says His words are Spirit and they are life. He spoke to people in such a way, so that they would ask questions, and want to know the truth. His parables were for those who had hardened hearts and just heard what they wanted.

Let’s finish the next couple verses.

JOHN 6: 64­-66
64 But there are some of you that believe not. For Jesus knew from the beginning who they were that believed not, and who should betray him.
65 And he said, Therefore said I unto you, that no man can come unto me, except it were given unto him of my Father.
66 From that time many of his disciples went back, and walked no more with him
.


Because they couldn’t understand His words they left Him. Words have meaning and it’s important that we understand them because Jesus tells us He is the Word. We are called to ‘chew on’ what He says (Ps. 1:2; John 8:31), to get in there and feed on His words which give life.

You see, I don’t like to follow the practice of ‘What Would Jesus Do’ because we don’t know, but we can see ‘What Did Jesus Do’!!
Jesus taught hard sayings so His true disciples would ask questions and want to know the truth! Those that stayed with Him got to know Christ and what the words of eternal life are!

That takes us to our text in 1 Corinthians 11th .

I’m going to read a little backwards because it’s important also to understand the severity of this passage, so let’s go ahead and start in:

1 CORINTHIANS 11:27-29
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
.


The Lord says through the apostle Paul to examine, right now whether you want to know Him and have understanding. He’s not a God of confusion but His words can be confusing to those who aren’t serious about Him [and even at times for those who are young in the faith].

He says that if you eat and drink unworthily, meaning without understanding then you bring damnation to yourself, because you don’t understand the purpose of communion [which is to remember the LORD’s death until He comes again. It is to appreciate what our salvation cost Him and how thankful we should always be that our sins were paid for at Christ’s expense].

Everywhere you read about communion in the Scriptures, it means the same as fellowship which is an interesting reference to Acts 2:42; it already mentions fellowship. I think the Lord is emphasizing that we are to know Him, to have fellowship with Him and to know his teachings; and to remember Him, and what’s He’s done for us!


1 CORINTHIANS 11:23-­26
23 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:
24 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.
25 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.
26 For as often as ye eat this bread, and drink this cup, ye do shew the Lord's death till he come
.

His body was broken and His blood was shed for you! The Lord said in:

MATTHEW 26:28
For this is my blood of the new testament, which is shed for many for the remission of sins
.

Was His blood shed at the time that He said this? No; so clearly He was talking about what was coming! Remember that! That’s a command!
Don’t do this in vain repetition seeking to make yourself holy in some sort of sacrament.
He says that brings damnation on you [if you partake in an unworthy or inappropriate manner]!

What’s interesting and blows my mind is that this reminds me of how fleshly and proud we are; how we as people can turn Jesus’ commands into some sort of works-based salvation!
To me that is Satan and his minions little battle victory, when we as people manipulate
God’s Word and turn a good work and a holy commandment into religion.

There’s a couple different works that God tells us to do and they are good. Works aren’t bad. We see that faith without works is dead (James 2:20, 26), but the church today is so scared and numb to this idea because so many use works as a means of salvation. God calls us to be baptized, which is a great work!
It represents us dying to self, being reborn and resurrected in the life of our Savior Jesus Christ. Our old man is buried and we have new life in Christ! See Romans 6:2-4.

PRAISE GOD! AMEN!

He doesn’t say continually do this. It’s a representation.
He also tells us to break bread. He says to do this continually, remembering Him until He
comes back! This is a great work. It reminds us to remember His death, the necessary payment for our atonement!

This first work, baptism, He says to do once, the next work He says do continually but never does He put any emphasis on it being a means of remission of sins.

My encouragement to you is to examine, and humble yourself, question whether you’ve turned a great work of Christ into a vain repetition or even worse brought damnation upon yourself. When we take communion, don’t try and be ‘super spiritual’, in order to look good; we need to be real and open before the LORD, confessing our sins and reconciling with God in our relationship with Him.
Remember His work and fellowship with Him and one with another!
AMEN? AMEN!

Some additional observations regarding the Breaking of Bread – by James Fire

It’s noteworthy to remember that our LORD sweat great drops of blood in the Garden of Gethsemane; the word ‘Gethsemane’ in Greek means “oil press” and our LORD was certainly being crushed by the weight and burden of this tremendous deed that waited before Him – bearing the sin and the subsequent judgment for all humanity before God the Father! His substitutionary death on the Cross was the work He alone accomplished for salvation – and this breaking of bread, or the LORD’s table or communion is the memorial for it, instituted by the LORD Himself.

We have the elements before us: the bread and the wine which we partake of in this fellowship with the LORD and His body – the assembly of the saints, the church of the LORD Jesus Christ.
It’s important to realize that bread is made possible only when the wheat kernels from which it’s made are crushed into a fine flour. Likewise the wine can only be partaken of if the grapes are crushed and their juices released; once crushed the wheat and the grapes are indistinguishable from one another, and they all become ‘one’. Meditate on the truth of the necessity in our LORD being crushed in order for us to find fellowship with our Father and unity among believers!

This is the body of Christ, the called out assembly (“church”), the saints who are born again of the Spirit – the body which our LORD prayed for in John Ch. 17:

JOHN 17:20-21
20 Neither pray I for these alone, but for them also which shall believe on me through their word;
21 That they all may be one; as thou, Father, art in me, and I in thee, that they also may be one in us: that the world may believe that thou hast sent me
.

In this ministration of communion we find that this fellowship brings unity and a spiritual cohesion to all members of the body, and according to the prayer of our LORD, this unity is to be expressed in such power that it mirrors that same unity among the Godhead: the Father, Son and Holy Spirit!

This fellowship with the LORD Who is Light, enables us to likewise have fellowship one with another (1 John 1:6-7).

Another aspect of Communion that I would like to address a bit more:

1 CORINTHIANS 11:27-32
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.
31 For if we would judge ourselves, we should not be judged.
32 But when we are judged, we are chastened of the Lord, that we should not be condemned with the world
.

This is a sacred time before the LORD, and we should take such time to conduct a ‘spiritual inspection’ of sorts, just as David spoke of in the Psalms:

PSALM 139:23-24
23 Search me, O God, and know my heart: try me, and know my thoughts:
24 And see if there be any wicked way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting
.

To partake of communion therefore with an unrepentant heart, that is, without proper confession of sins committed is a very grave offense. The apostle Paul warned and admonished us saints that if we would “judge ourselves” then the LORD wouldn’t have to. So let us confess our sins for He is faithful and just to forgive and cleanse us (1 John 1:9). Remember that when Adam and Eve sinned, they hid from God and could not fellowship; likewise if we sin and walk in darkness, we cannot have fellowship with the LORD (1 John 1:6).

So let us confess, repent and receive the grace of God for the forgiveness of our sins, walking away from such darkness and enter into the LIGHT of the LORD, enjoying blessed fellowship and communion with Him and His saints! A
MEN!

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