What does "discern the body" mean (1 Cor 11/Lord's Supper)

Discussion in 'Ecclesiology' started by WrittenFromUtopia, Jul 20, 2005.

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  1. WrittenFromUtopia

    WrittenFromUtopia Puritan Board Graduate

    What does "discern the body" refer to in 1 Cor 11?

    Is it discerning the Lord's spiritual bodily presence in the bread of communion, or is it the body of Christ, the Church?

    Is this a command for examining if we are in the faith, or examining if we can discern that the body of Christ (the Church) is God's people?
     
  2. PuritanCovenanter

    PuritanCovenanter Moderator Staff Member

    John Gill
    Robertson's Word Pictures
    They weren't understanding it's significance and were bringing chastizement or damnation upon themselves.
     
  3. PuritanCovenanter

    PuritanCovenanter Moderator Staff Member

    Gabriel,
    I am not sure either of your answers sufficiently expressed the ordinance so I couldn't vote. I'm kinda dingy sometimes and slow to understand. It may be that both are correct but not fully expressing the whole.


    [Edited on 7-20-2005 by puritancovenanter]
     
  4. wsw201

    wsw201 Puritan Board Senior

    From John Calvin, 1 Cor 11 27-29:


     
  5. WrittenFromUtopia

    WrittenFromUtopia Puritan Board Graduate

    Well, basically I was trying to separate between the paedocommunion and the orthodox Reformed view.
     
  6. wsw201

    wsw201 Puritan Board Senior

    I have read those who believe when Paul mentions the Lord's Body in that passage, they take it that he means the Church so they can get around the 'examine yourself" passage and let small children take communion.
     
  7. AdamM

    AdamM Puritan Board Freshman

    Even granting that Paul may be referring to the body, meaning the Church as Christ's body, the argument for paedocommunion from that section of scripture does not fly.

    Q1 - So you have to rightly discern who is and who is not in the body?

    Q2 - Can you do that without an insight and and understanding of the work of Christ, to rightly know who is and who isn't in the body?

    A. The kind of faith that remembers, proclaims and discerns fits either interpretation.
     
  8. PuritanCovenanter

    PuritanCovenanter Moderator Staff Member

    Gabe,

    I am not trying to be quarrelsome but this trying to figure out who is worthy is the same argument I was in earlier about who to baptize. How could I tell one was regenerate before they partake in the sign of being baptized into Christ's body. I think it is the same way for paedo-baptist, only in that they are trying to figure out who is worthy to partake of communion so that an individual doesn't do harm to themselve. It is going to rest upon a good confession and converstion of lifestyle. We can not see the heart but we are shown to how to tell some differences. We are told to test the spirits also. The fruit of the tree is another example.
     
  9. PuritanCovenanter

    PuritanCovenanter Moderator Staff Member

    WCF 26 section 2
    The Westminster calls for profession and offers it to all those who call upon the Lord. That is not an infant. Now I do not know if paedo involves pre-teens or not, you have to tell me what you think of that.

    [Edited on 7-21-2005 by puritancovenanter]
     
  10. wsw201

    wsw201 Puritan Board Senior

    If you don't mind me jumping in. As far partaking of the sacrament in a worthy manner consider WLC Q.170 through 177:

    Q. 170. How do they that worthily communicate in the Lord´s supper feed upon the body and blood of Christ therein?

    A. As the body and blood of Christ are not corporally or carnally present in, with, or under the bread and wine in the Lord´s supper,[1084] and yet are spiritually present to the faith of the receiver, no less truly and really than the elements themselves are to their outward senses;[1085] so they that worthily communicate in the sacrament of the Lord´s supper, do therein feed upon the body and blood of Christ, not after a corporal and carnal, but in a spiritual manner; yet truly and really,[1086] while by faith they receive and apply unto themselves Christ crucified, and all the benefits of his death.[1087]

    Q. 171. How are they that receive the sacrament of the Lord´s supper to prepare themselves before they come unto it?

    A. They that receive the sacrament of the Lord´s supper are, before they come, to prepare themselves thereunto, by examining themselves[1088] of their being in Christ,[1089] of their sins and wants;[1090] of the truth and measure of their knowledge,[1091] faith,[1092] repentance;[1093] love to God and the brethren,[1094] charity to all men,[1095] forgiving those that have done them wrong;[1096] of their desires after Christ,[1097] and of their new obedience;[1098] and by renewing the exercise of these graces,[1099] by serious meditation,[1100] and fervent prayer.[1101]

    Q. 172. May one who doubteth of his being in Christ, or of his due preparation, come to the Lord´s supper?

    A. One who doubteth of his being in Christ, or of his due preparation to the sacrament of the Lord´s supper, may have true interest in Christ, though he be not yet assured thereof;[1102] and in God´s account hath it, if he be duly affected with the apprehension of the want of it,[1103] and unfeignedly desires to be found in Christ,[1104] and to depart from iniquity:[1105] in which case (because promises are made, and this sacrament is appointed, for the relief even of weak and doubting Christians[1106]) he is to bewail his unbelief,[1107] and labor to have his doubts resolved;[1108] and, so doing, he may and ought to come to the Lord´s supper, that he may be further strengthened.[1109]

    Q. 173. May any who profess the faith, and desire to come to the Lord´s supper, be kept from it?

    A. Such as are found to be ignorant or scandalous, notwithstanding their profession of the faith, and desire to come to the Lord´s supper, may and ought to be kept from that sacrament, by the power which Christ hath left in his church,[1110] until they receive instruction, and manifest their reformation.[1111]

    Q. 174. What is required of them that receive the sacrament of the Lord´s supper in the time of the administration of it?

    A. It is required of them that receive the sacrament of the Lord´s supper, that, during the time of the administration of it, with all holy reverence and attention they wait upon God in that ordinance,[1112] diligently observe the sacramental elements and actions,[1113] heedfully discern the Lord´s body,[1114] and affectionately meditate on his death and sufferings,[1115] and thereby stir up themselves to a vigorous exercise of their graces;[1116] in judging themselves,[1117] and sorrowing for sin;[1118] in earnest hungering and thirsting after Christ,[1119] feeding on him by faith,[1120] receiving of his fullness,[1121] trusting in his merits,[1122] rejoicing in his love,[1123] giving thanks for his grace;[1124] in renewing of their covenant with God,[1125] and love to all the saints.[1126]

    Q. 175. What is the duty of Christians, after they have received the sacrament of the Lord´s supper?

    A. The duty of Christians, after they have received the sacrament of the Lord´s supper, is seriously to consider how they have behaved themselves therein, and with what success;[1127] if they find quickening and comfort, to bless God for it,[1128] beg the continuance of it,[1129] watch against relapses,[1130] fulfill their vows,[1131] and encourage themselves to a frequent attendance on that ordinance:[1132] but if they find no present benefit, more exactly to review their preparation to, and carriage at, the sacrament;[1133] in both which, if they can approve themselves to God and their own consciences, they are to wait for the fruit of it in due time:[1134] but, if they see they have failed in either, they are to be humbled,[1135] and to attend upon it afterwards with more care and diligence.[1136]

    Q. 176. Wherein do the sacraments of baptism and the Lord´s supper agree?

    A. The sacraments of baptism and the Lord´s supper agree, in that the author of both is God;[1137] the spiritual part of both is Christ and his benefits;[1138] both are seals of the same covenant,[1139] are to be dispensed by ministers of the gospel, and by none other;[1140] and to be continued in the church of Christ until his second coming.[1141]

    Q. 177. Wherein do the sacraments of baptism and the Lord´s supper differ?

    A. The sacraments of baptism and the Lord´s supper differ, in that baptism is to be administered but once, with water, to be a sign and seal of our regeneration and ingrafting into Christ,[1142] and that even to infants;[1143] whereas the Lord´s supper is to be administered often, in the elements of bread and wine, to represent and exhibit Christ as spiritual nourishment to the soul,[1144] and to confirm our continuance and growth in him,[1145] and that only to such as are of years and ability to examine themselves.[1146]
     
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