Sacramental understanding of the Lord's Supper

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saintandsinner77

Puritan Board Freshman
In listening to Lutherans speak about the Bodily Presence of Christ in the Supper, they point to 1 Corinthians 11:27:

"Therefore whoever eats the bread or drinks the cup of the Lord in an unworthy manner, shall be guilty of the body and the blood of the Lord."

Thus, against the Reformed, they argue, "how can the bread and wine in the Supper be merely sacramental symbols if by unworthy partaking, we become guilty of the actual body and blood of Christ?"

How would the brothers respond to this argument?
 

Philip

Puritan Board Graduate
Thus, against the Reformed, they argue, "how can the bread and wine in the Supper be merely sacramental symbols if by unworthy partaking, we become guilty of the actual body and blood of Christ?"

How would the brothers respond to this argument?

Exactly. No argument there.
 

saintandsinner77

Puritan Board Freshman
Thus, against the Reformed, they argue, "how can the bread and wine in the Supper be merely sacramental symbols if by unworthy partaking, we become guilty of the actual body and blood of Christ?"

How would the brothers respond to this argument?

Exactly. No argument there.

Phillip- Lutherans deny that the bread and wine are merely sacramental symbols, but rather arethe true body and blood of Christ. So again, how would a Reformed person respond to "being guilty of the actual body and blood" occur if the bread and wine are only sacramental symbols?
 

dudley

Puritan Board Post-Graduate
In the Lord’s Supper, Christ is very much present. Presbyterians affirm that....

In listening to Lutherans speak about the Bodily Presence of Christ in the Supper, they point to 1 Corinthians 11:27:

"Therefore whoever eats the bread or drinks the cup of the Lord in an unworthy manner, shall be guilty of the body and the blood of the Lord."

Thus, against the Reformed, they argue, "how can the bread and wine in the Supper be merely sacramental symbols if by unworthy partaking, we become guilty of the actual body and blood of Christ?"

How would the brothers respond to this argument?

The Reformed view of the supper is in complete alignment with other texts of Scripture. As a Reformed Protestant and a Presbyterian I believe in the Memorial nature of the sacrament , the bread remains only bread and the wine remains only wine and they symbolically represent Christ’s one time only needed sacrifice on Calvary for all who place their faith in Him alone for salvation. The fact that in the sacrament we are truly nourished by Christ's body and blood, by faith, not the mouth, bears a close resemblance to the many texts that describe our Lord's relationship to his church, such as those of the vine and branches, the head and body, and Christ's words about abiding in him. Likewise, it is in accordance with Christ's sending of the Holy Spirit in John 16: "I am going to the Father, where you can see me no longer...But when the Spirit of truth, comes...He will bring glory to me by taking from what is mine and making it known to you." Therefore, though Christ is not bodily present with us, we nevertheless have access to Him and all his benefits because of the work of the Holy Spirit. This is why the author to the Hebrews can describe those who have been baptized and have "tasted of the heavenly gift," as those "who have shared in the Holy Spirit" (Heb. 6:4). It is also why Jesus can refer to himself as "the bread of life" (John 6:48), while also acknowledging that "it is the Spirit who gives life" (John 6:63). It is the Holy Spirit that unites us to Christ and all his benefits.

We know as Reformed Protestants as John Calvin says “we ascend to Christ who is in heaven and who is seated at the right hand of the Father, we do not bring him down and make him a piece of bread as do the Lutherans and the Catholics. I truly believe the catholic teaching a well as the Lutheran teaching is an abomination and a blasphemy of the Lords Supper as He intended it. However as a Reformed Protestant and a Presbyterian I believe Christ truly becomes present to us in communion by our faith in Him and he becomes present to us fully because we spiritually ascend to Him in heaven. Because He is truly present 1 Corinthians 11:27: does apply to us as Reformed Protestants and we can say also as the Lutherans or the Catholics "Therefore whoever eats the bread or drinks the cup of the Lord in an unworthy manner, shall be guilty of the body and the blood of the Lord."

In his short treatise on the Lord’s Supper, John Calvin explained his view that the sacrament is not a sacrifice, but rather a meal in which God nourishes our faith.

If I am asked whether Jesus Christ is physically present in the elements of the Lord’s Supper, as a Presbyterians I would answer, “No.” Presbyterians do not believe that the physical substance of bread and wine are changed into the physical substance of Jesus’ body. The bread and wine remain bread and wine.

However, as a Presbyterian I do believe that this sacrament is more than a memorial feast. In the Lord’s Supper, Christ is very much present. Presbyterians affirm that Jesus is spiritually present. Christ is authentically present as we participate in the holy meal. Christ is genuinely present to us and not just in our memories.

As an ex Roman catholic however I am careful to emphasize the Protestant view of the meal as a memorial of Christ’s sacrifice on Calvary once for all and not a sacrifice a new in any way.

When I read the following passages from Hebrews it more obvious to me that the Lutheran teaching of consubstantiation is as ridiculous and absurd as the Roman Catholic church teaching of transubstantiation and worship of the “sacrifice” of the mass which is incorrect and a denial of our salvation from the work of Christ alone on Calvary for our Justification and we are made righteous by that connection to Christ by our affirmation of faith; no merit of our own, nor is their anything we can do to merit our salvation.
I read in ………
Hebrews 7:23-24; Hebrews 7:27; Hebrews 10:11-12; Hebrews 10:14; Hebrews 10:18 New International Version (NIV) Copyright © 2011

Hebrews 7:23-24
23 Now there have been many of those priests, since death prevented them from continuing in office; 24 but because Jesus lives forever, he has a permanent priesthood.
Hebrews 7:27
27 Unlike the other high priests, he does not need to offer sacrifices day after day, first for his own sins, and then for the sins of the people. He sacrificed for their sins once for all when he offered himself.
Hebrews 10:11-12
11 Day after day every priest stands and performs his religious duties; again and again he offers the same sacrifices, which can never take away sins. 12 But when this priest had offered for all time one sacrifice for sins, he sat down at the right hand of God,
Hebrews 10:14
14 For by one sacrifice he has made perfect forever those who are being made holy.
Hebrews 10:18
18 And where these have been forgiven, “sacrifice for sin is no longer necessary.”
 
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Dearly Bought

Puritan Board Junior
As usual, Calvin has your answer:
It remains, that we give a reply to the statement of Paul in this passage. “Paul represents the unworthy as guilty, inasmuch as they do not discern the Lord’s body: it follows, that they receive his body.” I deny the inference; for though they reject it, yet as they profane it and treat it with dishonor when it is presented to them, they are deservedly held guilty; for they do, as it were, cast it upon the ground, and trample it under their feet. Is such sacrilege trivial? Thus I see no difficulty in Paul’s words, provided you keep in view what God presents and holds out to the wicked — not what they receive.
(Commentary on 1 Corinthians 11)
 

saintandsinner77

Puritan Board Freshman
Though I do not hold Luther's view, I do not hold Calvin's view either. I don't see anywhere where Scripture speaks of Christians ascending into heaven to partake of Christ in any passage speaking of the Supper. I think this was more of a philosophical postulation by Calvin. I agree with you, I do not believe in a naked symbol and of course reject the absurdity of transubstantiation.

---------- Post added at 10:18 PM ---------- Previous post was at 10:06 PM ----------

As usual, Calvin has your answer:
It remains, that we give a reply to the statement of Paul in this passage. “Paul represents the unworthy as guilty, inasmuch as they do not discern the Lord’s body: it follows, that they receive his body.” I deny the inference; for though they reject it, yet as they profane it and treat it with dishonor when it is presented to them, they are deservedly held guilty; for they do, as it were, cast it upon the ground, and trample it under their feet. Is such sacrilege trivial? Thus I see no difficulty in Paul’s words, provided you keep in view what God presents and holds out to the wicked — not what they receive.
(Commentary on 1 Corinthians 11)
[/QUOTE

Calvin doesn't seem to really it answer it here...in fact, in context of 1 Corinthians 11, it is believers who are guilty of the body and blood which is why God judged them with sickness and death..so that they would not perish eternally..
 

Dearly Bought

Puritan Board Junior
Calvin doesn't seem to really it answer it here...in fact, in context of 1 Corinthians 11, it is believers who are guilty of the body and blood which is why God judged them with sickness and death..so that they would not perish eternally..

Calvin does recognise this context; he simply believes that Paul's words have a broader scope as well:

Now, if we would catch the meaning of this declaration, we must know what it is to eat unworthily. Some restrict it to the Corinthians, and the abuse that had crept in among them, but I am of opinion that Paul here, according to his usual manner, passed on from the particular case to a general statement, or from one instance to an entire class...
...I acknowledge that there are some who receive Christ truly in the Supper, and yet at the same time unworthily, as is the case with many weak persons...
(Commentary on 1 Corinthians 11)

It is not unworthy partaking by believers that has been the seat of the controversy between the Lutherans and Reformed. Rather, it is the Lutheran assertion that 1 Cor. 11:27 shows a reception of the body and blood of Christ apart from faith, thereby necessitating the local presence of Christ in the elements. Calvin answers this by distinguishing between a presentation of the Lord's body to the wicked (affirmed) and a reception of Him (denied).

I'd also like to note that Calvin's view is also that of the Belgic Confession and the Heidelberg Catechism, namely that the proper and natural body and blood of Christ are received by the work of the Spirit through faith even though Christ yet sits at the right hand of God (Belgic Article 35, Heidelberg Lord's Day 28). I believe that each part of that assertion is derived from Scripture, as the Scripture proofs appended to the Catechism display. I won't embark on an extended defense of this doctrine since this is a confessional board.
 

saintandsinner77

Puritan Board Freshman
Calvin doesn't seem to really it answer it here...in fact, in context of 1 Corinthians 11, it is believers who are guilty of the body and blood which is why God judged them with sickness and death..so that they would not perish eternally..

Calvin does recognise this context; he simply believes that Paul's words have a broader scope as well:

Now, if we would catch the meaning of this declaration, we must know what it is to eat unworthily. Some restrict it to the Corinthians, and the abuse that had crept in among them, but I am of opinion that Paul here, according to his usual manner, passed on from the particular case to a general statement, or from one instance to an entire class...
...I acknowledge that there are some who receive Christ truly in the Supper, and yet at the same time unworthily, as is the case with many weak persons...
(Commentary on 1 Corinthians 11)

It is not unworthy partaking by believers that has been the seat of the controversy between the Lutherans and Reformed. Rather, it is the Lutheran assertion that 1 Cor. 11:27 shows a reception of the body and blood of Christ apart from faith, thereby necessitating the local presence of Christ in the elements. Calvin answers this by distinguishing between a presentation of the Lord's body to the wicked (affirmed) and a reception of Him (denied).

I'd also like to note that Calvin's view is also that of the Belgic Confession and the Heidelberg Catechism, namely that the proper and natural body and blood of Christ are received by the work of the Spirit through faith even though Christ yet sits at the right hand of God (Belgic Article 35, Heidelberg Lord's Day 28). I believe that each part of that assertion is derived from Scripture, as the Scripture proofs appended to the Catechism display. I won't embark on an extended defense of this doctrine since this is a confessional board.

An unworthy communion nevertheless presupposes a communion- For example:

1Cor.10
[1] Moreover, brethren, I would not that ye should be ignorant, how that all our fathers were under the cloud, and all passed through the sea;
[2] And were all baptized unto Moses in the cloud and in the sea;
[3] And did all eat the same spiritual meat;
[4] And did all drink the same spiritual drink: for they drank of that spiritual Rock that followed them: and that Rock was Christ.
[5] But with many of them God was not well pleased: for they were overthrown in the wilderness.
 

Contra_Mundum

Pilgrim, Alien, Stranger
Staff member
I heard an interesting phrase today, "Jesus, on a plate," and the accompanying question (paraphrased), "In order to have the true presence of Christ, why do you need Jesus on a plate?"

You don't. Jesus presence is no less true, and real, for him being spiritually present, in exception to him being carnally present.

What the Lutherans (who are unquestionably Protestant) and the Romanists (who are the opposite) have in common is a doctrine of a corporeal or carnal presence, in addition to whatever they may understand as a Christ being spiritually present in the Supper. In other words, for some people, in order for "presence" to be true and real, it must be tangible. Thus, for such persons who equate true with tangible, to deny a tangible presence is to deny presence in toto. We declare that we maintain a doctrine of true and real presence. They declare our mode invalid, and our claim null--they assert that we deny real and true presence.

A Lutheran might reason thus:
1. The word "body" necessarily implies carnality.
2. Christ gave forth the words, 'This [bread] is my body."
3. Ergo, Christ meant, "This [bread] is my carnal presence."

Of course, the actual reasoning is much more involved than that. Lutherans deny mentonymy in the couplet ("is") of the sentence in view. That is, they deny what we affirm, namely that Christ intended any sort of powerful representation by use of the couplet.


The Reformed have perfectly good biblical and theological reasons for maintaining a doctrine of a real, but spiritual, presence of Christ in the Supper. For one thing, the Reformed believe it is a matter of first importance to maintain that Christ's true, human nature (which he not only had in his earthly Incarnation, but has never separated from), which is a body-and-soul, has not changed except for its glorification. He was made like us in every respect, yet without sin (Heb.2:17; 4:15); and we too will be made like him when we are glorified (Php3:21; 1Jn.3:2).

The Reformed affirm the communication of the attributes of each nature in the unified Person of Christ, maintaining the Chalcedonian distinction of the natures ("without conversion, composition, or confusion," WCF.8.2; cf. Chalcedon, "asunchutôs, atreptôs, adiairetôs, achôristôs" {inconfusedly, unchangeably, indivisibly, inseparably}. So, we affirm that "by reason of the unity of the person, that which is proper to one nature, is sometimes in Scripture attributed to the person denominated by the other nature," (WCF.8.7), e.g., "the blood of God," Act.20.28. But to avoid confusion of natures (and maintain our Chalcedonian orthodoxy), we deny that the communication of the attributes is directly from nature to nature.

Thus, the Reformed deny the "ubiquity" of the body (corporeality) of Christ. It is a sine qua non of every human body that it has a specific locality. We do not except for the body of Christ, for if the body of Christ has ubiquity, then it is no more the human body which is glorified. But after his resurrection, Jesus insisted that the disciples be convinced that his body was still the body they knew, however superior its abilities, Lk.24:39. Moreover, Christ's ascension was a true and real departure--he has left us, but not alone, Jn.16:7. "Heaven must receive [him] until the times of restitution of all things," Act.3:21.

The Lutherans, by bringing Christ to earth in the Supper, over-realize their eschatology. The Reformed, by contrast, insist that our spirits are lift up in worship, and we commune in The Spirit with the risen and ascended Christ where he is, Col.3:1; Eph.2:6. Thus, in the Supper we have the best communion with the body and blood of our Incarnate Lord (but not a different grace or Christ). It is a true, real spiritual communion. It is not a "mere commemoration," as we are sometimes accused of holding (and as some churches do teach, but not among our Confessions). We sit at table, and Christ serves us in the same manner and with the same meaning as he served his own disciples as the first Supper.

The disciples who sat at the first Supper did not manducate a morsel of the body of their Lord, who sat next to them (whole and entire) and served each of them. That communion was profoundly with the body and blood of the present Lord, but the disciples did not ingest him through the oral orifice, or by the gastric juices; it was a profoundly spiritual communion that night. It remains so in every Communion since.

The Reformed find any obeisance made to the wafer (or bread, etc.) a gross idolatry. But such reverence is affirmed as completely reasonable by Romanists and (at least some) Lutherans. The physical presence of Christ is affirmed under some species or other; hence a worshipful posture is thought fitting. Is this not the sensible course of those who believe in a carnal presence? Remember YOUR fathers, mothers, sisters, brothers, pastors, teachers, nurses, and spouses, who were variously put to cruel deaths--from public spectacles, to fugitive hunts--for refusing to participate in the sickening idols of popery, 2Cor.6:16; 1Ths.1:9. "Little children, keep yourselves from idols," 1Jn 5:21.


More could be said, and has been. Is the kerygmatic (preaching) presence of Christ any less real for its spirituality? Which side is guilty of greater "rationalism"--the Reformed who maintain that Scripture simply teaches a mystical and mysterious mode of communion with the true body and blood of the Savior, incomprehensible by the mind, that must simply be apprehended by faith? Or the views that must transsubstantiate the corporeal flesh of our Lord (Romanism) or ubiquitize it (Lutheranism), which is to say "assign to it strange, inhuman properties," in order to render the incomprehensible comprehensible, and put the corporeality of Christ's humanity in the equally corporeal grasp of the prelates and theologians? If the Bridegroom comes bodily to be fondled by the bride many many times prior to the wedding feast, what are we really waiting for in the wedding anyway?

"Bread in the mouth; Christ in the heart"--actually, that's not so very complicated or intricate, is it?
 

dudley

Puritan Board Post-Graduate
We also believe Christ is truly and completely present to us in every way

I heard an interesting phrase today, "Jesus, on a plate," and the accompanying question (paraphrased), "In order to have the true presence of Christ, why do you need Jesus on a plate?"

You don't. Jesus presence is no less true, and real, for him being spiritually present, in exception to him being carnally present.

What the Lutherans (who are unquestionably Protestant) and the Romanists (who are the opposite) have in common is a doctrine of a corporeal or carnal presence, in addition to whatever they may understand as a Christ being spiritually present in the Supper. In other words, for some people, in order for "presence" to be true and real, it must be tangible. Thus, for such persons who equate true with tangible, to deny a tangible presence is to deny presence in toto. We declare that we maintain a doctrine of true and real presence. They declare our mode invalid, and our claim null--they assert that we deny real and true presence.

A Lutheran might reason thus:
1. The word "body" necessarily implies carnality.
2. Christ gave forth the words, 'This [bread] is my body."
3. Ergo, Christ meant, "This [bread] is my carnal presence."

Of course, the actual reasoning is much more involved than that. Lutherans deny mentonymy in the couplet ("is") of the sentence in view. That is, they deny what we affirm, namely that Christ intended any sort of powerful representation by use of the couplet.


The Reformed have perfectly good biblical and theological reasons for maintaining a doctrine of a real, but spiritual, presence of Christ in the Supper. For one thing, the Reformed believe it is a matter of first importance to maintain that Christ's true, human nature (which he not only had in his earthly Incarnation, but has never separated from), which is a body-and-soul, has not changed except for its glorification. He was made like us in every respect, yet without sin (Heb.2:17; 4:15); and we too will be made like him when we are glorified (Php3:21; 1Jn.3:2).

The Reformed affirm the communication of the attributes of each nature in the unified Person of Christ, maintaining the Chalcedonian distinction of the natures ("without conversion, composition, or confusion," WCF.8.2; cf. Chalcedon, "asunchutôs, atreptôs, adiairetôs, achôristôs" {inconfusedly, unchangeably, indivisibly, inseparably}. So, we affirm that "by reason of the unity of the person, that which is proper to one nature, is sometimes in Scripture attributed to the person denominated by the other nature," (WCF.8.7), e.g., "the blood of God," Act.20.28. But to avoid confusion of natures (and maintain our Chalcedonian orthodoxy), we deny that the communication of the attributes is directly from nature to nature.

Thus, the Reformed deny the "ubiquity" of the body (corporeality) of Christ. It is a sine qua non of every human body that it has a specific locality. We do not except for the body of Christ, for if the body of Christ has ubiquity, then it is no more the human body which is glorified. But after his resurrection, Jesus insisted that the disciples be convinced that his body was still the body they knew, however superior its abilities, Lk.24:39. Moreover, Christ's ascension was a true and real departure--he has left us, but not alone, Jn.16:7. "Heaven must receive [him] until the times of restitution of all things," Act.3:21.

The Lutherans, by bringing Christ to earth in the Supper, over-realize their eschatology. The Reformed, by contrast, insist that our spirits are lift up in worship, and we commune in The Spirit with the risen and ascended Christ where he is, Col.3:1; Eph.2:6. Thus, in the Supper we have the best communion with the body and blood of our Incarnate Lord (but not a different grace or Christ). It is a true, real spiritual communion. It is not a "mere commemoration," as we are sometimes accused of holding (and as some churches do teach, but not among our Confessions). We sit at table, and Christ serves us in the same manner and with the same meaning as he served his own disciples as the first Supper.

The disciples who sat at the first Supper did not manducate a morsel of the body of their Lord, who sat next to them (whole and entire) and served each of them. That communion was profoundly with the body and blood of the present Lord, but the disciples did not ingest him through the oral orifice, or by the gastric juices; it was a profoundly spiritual communion that night. It remains so in every Communion since.

The Reformed find any obeisance made to the wafer (or bread, etc.) a gross idolatry. But such reverence is affirmed as completely reasonable by Romanists and (at least some) Lutherans. The physical presence of Christ is affirmed under some species or other; hence a worshipful posture is thought fitting. Is this not the sensible course of those who believe in a carnal presence? Remember YOUR fathers, mothers, sisters, brothers, pastors, teachers, nurses, and spouses, who were variously put to cruel deaths--from public spectacles, to fugitive hunts--for refusing to participate in the sickening idols of popery, 2Cor.6:16; 1Ths.1:9. "Little children, keep yourselves from idols," 1Jn 5:21.


More could be said, and has been. Is the kerygmatic (preaching) presence of Christ any less real for its spirituality? Which side is guilty of greater "rationalism"--the Reformed who maintain that Scripture simply teaches a mystical and mysterious mode of communion with the true body and blood of the Savior, incomprehensible by the mind, that must simply be apprehended by faith? Or the views that must transsubstantiate the corporeal flesh of our Lord (Romanism) or ubiquitize it (Lutheranism), which is to say "assign to it strange, inhuman properties," in order to render the incomprehensible comprehensible, and put the corporeality of Christ's humanity in the equally corporeal grasp of the prelates and theologians? If the Bridegroom comes bodily to be fondled by the bride many many times prior to the wedding feast, what are we really waiting for in the wedding anyway?

"Bread in the mouth; Christ in the heart"--actually, that's not so very complicated or intricate, is it?

I say amen and agree completely with Bryan Peters and Reverend Bruce; they say perhaps better and more accurately what I also was trying to explain in my post as someone who is now a Presbyterian and was at one time a Roman catholic and even a Lutheran for a while before becoming a Reformed Protestant. Rev. Bruce states it clearly when he says: “The Reformed find any obeisance made to the wafer (or bread, etc.) a gross idolatry. But such reverence is affirmed as completely reasonable by Romanists and (at least some) Lutherans. The physical presence of Christ is affirmed under some species or other; hence a worshipful posture is thought fitting. Is this not the sensible course of those who believe in a carnal presence? Remember YOUR fathers, mothers, sisters, brothers, pastors, teachers, nurses, and spouses, who were variously put to cruel deaths--from public spectacles, to fugitive hunts--for refusing to participate in the sickening idols of popery, 2Cor.6:16; 1Ths.1:9. "Little children, keep yourselves from idols," 1Jn 5:21.” I could not agree more. I am in complete concurrence with Rev. Bruce’s position as well as Bryan Peters when he says: “I'd also like to note that Calvin's view is also that of the Belgic Confession and the Heidelberg Catechism, namely that the proper and natural body and blood of Christ are received by the work of the Spirit through faith even though Christ yet sits at the right hand of God (Belgic Article 35, Heidelberg Lord's Day 28). I believe that each part of that assertion is derived from Scripture, as the Scripture proofs appended to the Catechism display. I won't embark on an extended defense of this doctrine since this is a confessional board.”

I believe that as a Protestant who is a Presbyterian and a believer in the Reformed faith and the Reformed position on the Lords Supper that the communion service is a memorial of Christ’s sacrifice for me on Calvary which by my connection and Gods grace connects me to Christ’s righteousness in which I am saved by faith in Him alone. Not any merit or doing of my own. I do not need to believe I am holier by receiving a piece of bread and a cup of wine that is said to have Christ physically present in me. Christ comes to me in the communion in the Presbyterian church because we ascend to Him in faith in the communion service and I believe the bread remains bread and the wine remains wine but Christ is truly present spiritually and even within me in a more beautiful way than what the Lutherans call Consubstantiation and what the Roman catholic church teaches called transubstantiation. To me the Lord's Supper is the sign and seal of eating and drinking in communion with the crucified and risen Lord.

I said in my previous post to this thread “that in the sacrament of the Lords Supper we are truly nourished by Christ's body and blood, by faith, not the mouth, bears a close resemblance to the many texts that describe our Lord's relationship to his church, such as those of the vine and branches, the head and body, and Christ's words about abiding in him. Likewise, it is in accordance with Christ's sending of the Holy Spirit in John 16: "I am going to the Father, where you can see me no longer...But when the Spirit of truth, comes...He will bring glory to me by taking from what is mine and making it known to you." Therefore, though Christ is not bodily present with us, we nevertheless have access to him and all his benefits because of the work of the Holy Spirit.”

As a Presbyterian and Reformed Protestant I deny the "ubiquity" of the body (corporeality) of Christ just as Revernd Bruce explained when he said “ It is a sine qua non of every human body that it has a specific locality. We do not except for the body of Christ, for if the body of Christ has ubiquity, then it is no more the human body which is glorified. But after his resurrection, Jesus insisted that the disciples be convinced that his body was still the body they knew, however superior its abilities, Lk.24:39. Moreover, Christ's ascension was a true and real departure--he has left us, but not alone, Jn.16:7. "Heaven must receive [him] until the times of restitution of all things," Act.3:21.

The Lutherans, by bringing Christ to earth in the Supper, over-realize their eschatology. The Reformed, by contrast, insist that our spirits are lift up in worship, and we commune in The Spirit with the risen and ascended Christ where he is, Col.3:1; Eph.2:6. Thus, in the Supper we have the best communion with the body and blood of our Incarnate Lord (but not a different grace or Christ). It is a true, real spiritual communion. It is not a "mere commemoration," as we are sometimes accused of holding (and as some churches do teach, but not among our Confessions). We sit at table, and Christ serves us in the same manner and with the same meaning as he served his own disciples as the first Supper.”

I Dudley Davis am now a Reformed Protestant and a Presbyterian and thus I believe Christ is truly present to us not in a carnal way; which is what the Lutherans and Roman Catholics believe who I believe are definitely wrong. However I do believe that Christ is truly present to us in every way according to chalcedon. I truly receive Christ because he is truly present to us in the Supper and if we do not receive worthily we are guilty of unworthy partaking; even though as Reformed Protestants we firmly believe that the bread and wine in the Supper are sacramental symbols. I believe they do remain bread and wine only after the Supper but during communing I also believe Christ is truly and completely present to us in every way and I believe more so than the Lutheran and Roman catholic positions which defy and deny Chlecedon. Thus if we receive by unworthy partaking, we do become guilty of the actual body and blood of Christ." I hope that in some one clarifies for you the question you initially asked “"how can the bread and wine in the Supper be merely sacramental symbols if by unworthy partaking, we become guilty of the actual body and blood of Christ?" you asked “How would the brothers respond to this argument? “ I believe brother Bryan Peters and our brother Reverend Bruce Buchanan and I hope; I as well answered your question. Because we as Reformed Protestants who believe He is truly present 1 Corinthians 11:27: does apply to us as Reformed Protestants "Therefore whoever eats the bread or drinks the cup of the Lord in an unworthy manner, shall be guilty of the body and the blood of the Lord." I will state I do believe as a Reformed Protestant that I more completely receive Christ in every way when I partake of the Lords Supper as a Presbyterian than I ever did as Lutheran or a Roman catholic. It is one of the many reasons I am so thankful to have been given the gift of the Reformed Faith by the grace of God alone which then allowed me to confess that I believe in Christ alone for my salvation who is all presented to me and all who accept Christ as the only mediator;in the scriptures which are the only and final authority. In receiving communion as a Reformed Protestant I am truly giving all glory to God alone who has Christ seated at His side in heaven! We who are Reformed Protestants truly profess the 5 solas of the glorious Protestant Reformation in every way! I believe we profess the true faith of the apostles and the true church which has the true sacramental nature of Baptism and The Lords Supper, the only two sacraments, and with Christ only as its head!
 
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