Sacraments

In places with a Christian heritage the weightiness of baptism can easily be underestimated. Many people get baptized, or baptize their children, out of impulse, or as a matter of custom. It isn’t usually a sobering decision. Believers under persecution understand baptism differently. Immediately...
Has the church has missed God’s plan for spiritual growth? Conventional wisdom promotes pragmatic self-help schemes, elaborate church programs, and charismatic leaders. But what if God actually authorized a simpler way? Early Christians committed to expository preaching, fellowship, and prayers (...
Berengarius of Tours and the Dispute on the Lord’s Supper When Berengarius of Tours expressed his disagreement with the teachings of Lanfranc of Bec regarding the Lord’s Supper, he might have meant to continue the peaceful discussion that had begun in the ninth century between Paschasius Radbertus...
In 381 the Council of Constantinople wrote the Niceno-Constantinopolitan Creed. In that creed we find the attributes of the Church. The famous line says that the church is “one, holy, catholic and apostolic.” However, in the days of the Reformation disputes arose. The Roman Catholics contested the...
Red, Red Wine and Brown, Brown Bread
Following up last week’s discussion on church discipline, Carl and Aimee bring up the closely related topic of the Lord’s Supper. What does church discipline tell us about the importance of church membership and the Lord’s Supper? Should membership in a church be required in order for a person to...
Recently, a video of Francis Chan surfaced in which he tries to explain what he now believes about the real physical presence of Christ in the Lord’s Supper. Without wishing to dissect the many erroneous arguments Chan made about the unity of the visible Church throughout the first fifteen hundred...
Editors Note: This is the first post in a short-run series on Puritan Worship. I'd like to take you on a journey back through time to a Christian worship service in the Middle Ages. The year is 1413; we enter a large cathedral where the bishop is about to celebrate the Roman mass. Before us is a...
The whole of the Christian life can be summed up in these two little words (favorites of the Apostle Paul): "in Him." Our union with Christ is the definitive aspect of our salvation and our status before God and others, and therefore our identity must be found in Christ. Of course, this is easier...
Many Christians today hold to the misconception that the Lord's Supper is nothing other than a memorial meal, a time where we "look back" and reflect upon the death of Christ. This is generally the view of mainstream evangelicalism, though if we are not cautious it can easily become the default...
Humans are complex creatures, consisting of body and soul. God formed us out of the dust of the ground (Gen. 2:7a). He gave us bodies, making us physical creatures. And He nourishes our bodies with physical things. The Lord provides food to satisfy our hunger and drink to quench our thirst. But...