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Sacraments

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What are the means of grace?
The Word, sacraments and prayer (Matt. 28:19; Acts 2:41-42)
What is a sacrament?
A sacrament is a holy ordinance instituted by Christ, Where in, by sensible sings, Christ and the benefits of new covenant are represented, sealed, and applied to believers. (Gal. 3:27; 1 Cor. 10:16).
How many sacraments are there?
There are two sacraments: baptism and the Lord's Supper (Matt. 28:19; 26:26-28).
What are the criteria for determining a sacrament?
A sacrament must be:
1. Explicitly instituted by Christ as an ordinance in his church that continues until he returns (Matt. 28:19; 1 Cor. 11:26).

2. An external, sensible sign and seal of the benefits of Christ's mediation of the covenant of grace.
Is foot washing a sacrament? Why?
• No!
1. Foot-washing is not a sign and seal of the benefits we receive from Christ's mediation of the covenant of grace, but rather a symbol of the acts of humility and service that
we should perform (Jn.13:13-16).

2. Foot-washing was not instituted as an ordinance that continues until Christ returns (Jn. 13:13-16; cf. Matt. 28:19; 1 Cor. 11:26).

3. There is no evidence that the apostles or early church practiced foot-washing as a sacrament, but there is ample evidence that they practiced baptism and the Lord's
Supper.
What are the parts of a sacrament?
(Sign & Seal) The sign and the grace it signifies.
Does anything really "happen" in a sacrament?
• Yes.
1. The benefits of Christ's mediation are signified and sealed (1 Cor. 10:16)

2. Our faith is nourished and strengthened (Gal. 3:26-27)

3. We are obliged to obedience (Rom. 6:3-4)

4. We testify to our love for one another (1 Cor. 10:17)

5. We are distinguished from unbelievers (Eph. 2:11-12)
Cite at least four NT references showing parallels between the OT and NT with regard to sacraments.
• Baptism and circumcision
1. Col. 2:11-12
2. Acts 2:39, cf. Gen. 17:9-12

• Lord's Supper and Passover
1. Matt. 26:26-28, cf. Ex. 12
2. 1 Cor. 10:16-18 (Israel eating sacrifices)
How are the sacraments related to the written and preached word?
• The Word and the sacraments:
1. Have the same author (2 Tim. 3:16; 1 Cor. 11:23-25)
2. Have the same content (1 Cor. 1:23; 11:26)
3. Require faith as the means to appropriate the
content (1 Cor. 1:21; Col. 2:12)

• But the Word takes priority over the sacraments, because it:
1. Is essential for salvation, while the sacraments are not
(Rom. 10:14-15; 4:11)

2. Engenders and strengthens faith, while the
sacraments only strengthen it (Rom.10:17; Gal. 3:26-27)

3. Is intended for the whole world, while the
sacraments are only intended for the church
(Rom.10:12-17; Eph. 2:11-12).
How are the sacraments a means of grace? or become effectual means of salvation?
The sacraments become effectual means of salvation, not from any virtue in them, or in him that does administer them; but only by the blessing of Christ, and the working of his Spirit in them that by Faith receive them. SC 91

In other words, The sacraments are signs and seals that the Holy Spirit uses to confer divine grace when that grace is received by faith (Gal. 3:26-27; Col. 2:12).
Reformed view of Sacraments?
1. The sacraments are signs and seals that the Holy Spirit uses to confer divine grace when that grace is received by faith (Gal. 3:26-27; Col. 2:12).

2. There are two sacraments: baptism and the Lord's Supper (Matt. 28:19; 26:26-28).
Roman Catholic View of Sacraments?
o The sacraments confer grace by the work performed (ex opre operato), apart from the faith of the recipient.

1. Objection: Gal. 3:26-27 and Col. 2:11-12 both say faith is necessary to appropriate the grace offered in a sacrament.

o There are 7 Sacraments: Baptism, Communion, Confirmation, Penance, Marriage, Ordination, Last Rights / Extreme Unction.

2. Objection: The last 5 of these were either not instituted by Christ as an ordinance that continues until he returns, or do not signify the benefits of Christ's mediation, or both. Therefore, they do not meet the definition of a sacrament (Gal. 3:27; 1 Cor. 10:16).
Lutheran view of Sacraments?
IDK, will ask alfred.
Baptists view of Sacraments?
o Sacraments are not means of grace, but merely symbols of it.

1. Objection: Scripture teaches that the sacraments are signs and seals that the Holy Spirit uses to confer divine grace when that grace is received by faith (Gal. 3:27; Col. 2:12).

o There are two sacraments: baptism and the Lord's Supper.
Baptists view of baptism according to schaff?
They teach that believers only ought to be baptized, that is, dipped or immersed, on a voluntary confession of their faith. They reject infant baptism as an un-scriptural innovation and profanation of the sacrament, since an infant can not hear the gospel, nor repent and make a profession of faith. They believe, however, in the salvation of all children dying before the age of responsibility. Baptism in their system has no regenerative and saving efficacy: it is simply an outward sign of grace already bestowed, a public profession of faith in christ to the world, and an entrance into the privileges and duties of church membership.
All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Go therefore, and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of
the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.
Matt. 28:18-20
Repent and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins, and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. For the promise is
for you and for your children, and for all who are far off, everyone whom the Lord our God
calls to himself.
Acts 2:38-39
He received the sign of circumcision as a seal of the righteousness that he had by faith while he was still uncircumcised.
Rom. 4:11
For in Christ Jesus you are all sons of God, through faith. For as many of you as were baptized into Christ have put on Christ.
Gal. 3:26-27
In him also you were circumcised with a circumcision made without hands, by putting off the body of flesh, by the circumcision of Christ, having been buried with him in
baptism, in which you were also raised with him through faith in the powerful working of God who raised him from the dead.
Col. 2:11-12
He saved us, not because of works done by us in righteousness, but according to his own mercy, by the washing of regeneration and renewal of the Holy Spirit.
Tit. 3:5
What is baptism?
• Baptism is a sacrament, wherein the washing with water, in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost (Matt. 28:19), does signify and seal

> our ingrafting into Chist (Gal. 3:26-27);

>and partaking of the benefits of the covenant of grace
(Acts 2:38-39);

>and our engagement to be the Lord's (Rom. 6:3-4).
Where in Scripture is the language of "sign" and "seal" used? How does this latter term relate to paedo-baptism?
• The language of sign and seal in reference to a sacrament is used in Rom. 4:11.

o Used in reference to circumcision.

• The term "seal" means that baptism is a guarantee and confirmation of the grace which it
signifies.

o This relates to paedo-baptism because when an
infant is baptized, God is marking that child as his,
and providing confirmation of his promise to
bestow on that child the blessings of the covenant
of grace.
What is the proper mode of baptism?
Baptism is properly administered by pouring or sprinkling water (Heb. 9:10-21; Acts 2:33,38-39). Immersion is permitted but not necessary.
Why is immersion permitted but not necessary?
• Baptism signifies purification from sin (John 3:25-27; Acts 2:38).

o This purification is described in terms of sprinkling in Heb. 9:10-22, Heb. 10:22 and Ezek. 36:25-26.

• Baptism also signifies regeneration by the Holy Spirit (Tit. 3:4-5), and Scripture often speaks of the Spirit being poured out (Joel 2:28-29; Acts 2:33; 10:45).

• This is why sprinkling or pouring are the prescribed modes of baptism.

• But immersion is permitted, because it can also symbolize purification.
Defend the Reformed view of the mode of baptism against the Baptist view.
1. Although βαπτιζω and its cognates can mean immersion, the word does not only mean
immersion.

o Heb. 9:10 uses βαπτισμα to refer to the various ceremonial washings of the old covenant, and then refers to those same washings in terms of sprinkling in vv. 13, 19
and 21.

> V. 22 says that these washings symbolized purification with blood for the forgiveness of sins.

2. Purification from sin is precisely what baptism signifies (John 3:25-27; Acts 2:38).

o This purification is described in terms of sprinkling,
not only in Heb. 9, but also inHeb. 10:22 and Ezek.
36:25-26.

3. Baptism also signifies regeneration by the Holy Spirit (Tit. 3:4-5), and Scripture often speaks of the Spirit being poured out (Joel 2:28-29; Acts 2:33; 10:45).

• This is why sprinkling or pouring are the prescribed
modes of baptism.
• But immersion is permitted, because it can also
symbolize purification.
If someone came to you and asked to be baptized by immersion, how would you respond?
• I would seek to understand why immersion was so important to them, and I would take them. through the biblical evidence for sprinkling and pouring.

• If they were still not convinced, I would ultimately refuse to baptize them by immersion.

o The administration of the sacraments is under the authority of the Session, and therefore, I would only baptize in the mode authorized by the Session.

I would attempt to guide the Session towards sprinkling.
Who is to be baptized?
All who profess faith in Christ, together with their children (Acts 2:38-39).
Why do we baptize our children? If they can't believe, how can baptism be a sign of their commitment to the Lord?
• We baptize our children because God promises to be God to us and to our children after us, and he therefore considers our children to be part of his covenant people, and commands us to give them the sign of the covenant.

o The new covenant sign of baptism corresponds to
the sign of circumcision in the Old Testament
(Col. 2:11-12).

o God commanded that the covenant sign of
circumcision be administered to the children of his
covenant people (Gen. 17:9-14).

o This command is not rescinded with the new covenant
sign of baptism. In fact, Scripture indicates that both
the promise and the command continues in
Acts 2:38-39.

• Romans 4:11-12 says that circumcision was a sign of faith, yet God commanded that it be administered to infants. So clearly God does not share the assumption that a sign of faith should only be administered to those who are old enough to have faith.
Compare and contrast circumcision and baptism, citing the relevant passages of Scripture.
• Similar:
o Initiatory rite (Gen. 17:9-12; Acts 2:38-39)
o Picture the death of the old man and the cutting
away of the sinful nature (Col. 2:11-12; Rom. 6:3-4).

o Signify:
1. Regeneration (Rom. 2:28-29; Tit. 3:5)
2. Repentance (Jer. 4:4; Acts 2:38)
3. The righteousness of faith (Rom. 4:11; Gal. 3:26-27)

• Different:
o Circumcision only administered to males, baptism to
males and females
Baptism is a sign of justification by faith, and therefore should not be administered before faith is present.
o Response: Circumcision was a sign and seal of justification by faith, just like baptism (Rom. 4:11; Gal. 3:26-27), yet God commanded that circumcision be administered to infants (Gen. 17:9-12). So clearly God does not share the assumption that a sign of faith should not be administered to children before faith is present.
Infant baptism is nowhere in Scripture.
o Response: This objection fails to see the connection between baptism and
circumcision.

1. Circumcision was the sign the covenant the Old Testament, and it was administered to infants because God considered them part of his covenant
people (Gen. 17:9-12).

2. In the new covenant, circumcision has been replaced with baptism (Col. 2:11-12). Yet Acts 2:38-39 indicates that the command to administer the covenant sign to our children continues.
How would you deal with a family in your church who does not want their child baptized?
• I would pray for them and do everything in my power to convince them of the truth and importance of infant baptism. I would take them through Children of the Promise by Randy Booth, as well as the relevant passages of Scripture. I would also impress upon them the seriousness of disobeying this command (Gen. 17:14).

• If they were not convinced, I would ask them to attend another church. We cannot in good conscience allow people under our care to break God's covenant by withholding the covenant sign from their children (Gen. 17:14).
Does baptism actually save the person baptized?
• No. Although it is a great sin to neglect baptism, grace and salvation are not so inseparably annexed to it that no person can be regenerated or saved without it, or that all those who are baptized are undoubtedly regenerated.

o Paul's argument in Rom. 4:9-12 is that Abraham was justified by faith before he received the sign of circumcision, so salvation must be by faith rather than
circumcision.

o Because baptism is the new covenant counterpart to circumcision, its relationship to
salvation is the same.
Describe the relationship, if any, between baptism and regeneration.
• In baptism, the grace of regeneration is offered and really exhibited, but baptism itself does not regenerate (Rom. 4:11).

o Regeneration is a work of the Holy Spirit (Tit. 3:5).

o Acts 10: Cornelius receives the Spirit and is regenerated before he is baptized.
How is baptism rightly administered?
• Baptism is rightly administered through washing with water in the Name of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit by a minister of the gospel lawfully ordained (Matt. 28:19; 16:19).
Can a person be baptized more than once?
• If a person's baptism is lawfully administered (see above), they should only be baptized
once.

• Baptism signifies and seals one-time acts of grace that are associated with initial salvation, such as in-grafting into Christ (Gal. 3:27), regeneration (Rom. 6:3-4), and cleansing from the guilt of sin (Acts 2:38). Because these are one-time acts, baptism should only be administered once.
How would you handle a request for baptism from a previously baptized...
1. Roman Catholic?
o I would not re-baptize them, because a Roman Catholic baptism is Trinitarian and is administered by a lawfully ordained minister of the gospel. Calvin was a vigorous opponent of the Catholic Church, yet he did not see the need to be re-baptized.

2. Former liberal?
o It would depend if the baptism was Trinitarian and administered by a lawfully ordained minister.

3. Mormon?
o I would baptize them, because Mormon baptism is not Trinitarian. Although they evoke the names of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit, they do not conceive of them as
one God in three persons. Thus the Mormon use of the Trinitarian names is not a true invocation of the Trinity.
Our larger catechism speaks of improving our baptism. What does it mean by that, and how are we to improve our baptism?
• The catechism is guarding against the tendency to see baptism as merely a rite with no actual
significance.

• So when the catechism speaks of improving our baptism, it means that we should put our baptism to use by experiencing its meaning and living out its implications in daily life.

o We improve our baptism:

1. When others are baptized, by reflecting on the grace baptism signifies and seals, and how God has bestowed that grace upon us;

2. By sorrowing for our sin, and confessing our need for the cleansing which baptism signifies;

3. By believing and rejoicing in the forgiveness of our sin

4. By drawing strength from our union with Christ in his death and resurrection to grow in our sanctification;
Reformed View of baptism
Baptism does not regenerate, but it is a means of grace that is to be administered to believers as a sign and seal of righteousness by faith, and to their children, who are within the covenant by virtue of their parents' faith (Gen. 17:1-14; Acts 2:38-39; Rom. 4:11-12; Col. 2:11-12).
Catholic View of baptism
Baptismal regeneration. Through the sacrament of baptism the recipient is regenerated.

o Objection: baptismal regeneration nullifies the need for faith to make baptism effective (Col. 2:11-12), and in Acts 10 Cornelius receives the Holy Spirit and is regenerated before he is baptized.
Lutheran View of baptism
Baptismal regeneration. Through the sacrament of baptism the recipient is regenerated.

o Objection: baptismal regeneration nullifies the need for faith to make baptism effective (Col. 2:11-12), and in Acts 10 Cornelius receives the Holy Spirit and is
regenerated before he is baptized.
Baptist View of baptism
Baptism is a sign of faith and a public profession of faith, and as such it should only be administered to believers, not their children.

o Objection: Scripture never describes baptism as a public profession of faith, of something we do (though faith is required to appropriate the grace offered in baptism). Rather, baptism is a sign and seal of what God has done on our behalf through his Son (Rom. 4:11-12; 6:3-4; Col. 2:11-12).

o Objection: Baptists fail to recognize the connection between circumcision and baptism. Circumcision was a sign and seal of the righteousness of faith, just like baptism (Rom. 4:11; Gal. 3:26-27), yet God commanded that circumcision be administered to infants (Gen. 17:9-12).
Jesus institutes the Lord's Supper during Passover.
Matt. 26:26-28
The cup of blessing that we bless, is it not a participation in the blood of Christ? The bread that we break, is it not a participation in the body of Christ? Because there is one bread, we who are many are one body, for we all partake of the one bread.
1 Cor. 10:16-17
For I received from the Lord what I also delivered to you, that the Lord Jesus on the night when he was betrayed took bread, and when he had given thanks, he broke it, and said, "This is my body which is for you. Do this in remembrance of me." In the same way also he took the cup, after supper, saying, "This cup is the new covenant in my blood. Do this, as often as you drink it, in remembrance of me." For as often as you eat this bread and drink the cup, you proclaim the Lord's death until he comes.
1 Cor. 11:23-26
"...Jesus, whom heaven must receive until the time for restoring all things"
Acts 3:21
What is the meaning of the Lord's Supper?
• The Lord's Supper is a sacrament of the New Testament, in which, by giving and receiving bread and wine according to the appointment of Jesus Christ,

1. his death is shown forth (1 Cor. 11:26);

2. and they that rightly receive it by faith are made partakers of his body and blood, with all his benefits, to their spiritual nourishment, and growth in grace (1 Cor. 10:16-17).
Is Christ in any sense present in the Lord's Supper? If so, how?
• Yes.
1. Christ spiritually present to the faith of the receiver, no less than the bread and wine are present to the senses of the receiver (1 Cor. 11:23-26).

2. Christ is not physically present in the elements, because Acts 3:21 says that he is physically in heaven until the restoration of all things.
What are biblical requirements for receiving communion?
Believe in Christ, and examine yourself (1 Cor. 11:23-29).
How should believers celebrate the Lord's Supper?
• During the administration of the Supper, believers should wait upon God with holy reverence and attention, diligently observe the sacramental elements and actions (Matt. 26:28),
heedfully discern the Lord's body (1 Cor. 11:29), and affectionately meditate on his death and sufferings (Lk. 22:19), and thereby stir up themselves to a vigorous exercise of their graces;

o in judging themselves, and sorrowing for sin (1 Cor. 11:31);

o in earnest hungering and thirsting after Christ, feeding on him by faith (Jn. 6:35), receiving of his fullness, trusting in his merits, rejoicing in his love, giving thanks for his grace (1 Cor. 10:16);

o in renewing of their covenant with God, and love to all the saints (Acts 2:42).
How should believers examine themselves before participating in the Lord's Supper?
• They should examine themselves:

1. of their knowledge to discern the Lord's body,

2. of their faith to feed on him,

3. and of their repentance, love and new obedience (1 Cor. 11:27-29).
Isn't it inconsistent to practice paedo-baptism but not paedo-communion?
• No. There are important differences between the sacraments that lead to a different practice in this area:

1. Baptism is a rite of initiation into the church (Gen. 17:9-12; Acts 2:38-39), whereas the Lord's Supper is a practice of continuing fellowship (1 Cor. 11:17).

2. In baptism, the recipient is completely passive, whereas in the Lord's Supper the recipient is active.

3. Scripture explicitly commands us to examine ourselves and remember Christ as we celebrate the Lord's Supper (1 Cor. 11:23-29), and doing so while in the act of taking the Lord's Supper is intrinsic to receiving the grace of the sacrament. There is no such command that the recipient is to perform in the act of baptism.
How is "fencing the table" practiced during the Lord's Supper? Or, What is "fencing the table"?
• Fencing the table is a verbal warning of the dangers of eating the Lord's Supper in an unworthy manner (1 Cor. 11:27-29).

• We ask people to abstain from the Lord's Supper if they are...

o An unbeliever (1 Cor. 10:16-17; 11:27-29);

o In a conflict with a brother or sister in Christ and refusing to be reconciled (Matt. 5:24) (cf. 1 Cor. 10:16-18, connects Lord's Supper with OT sacrifices).
Reformed View of the Lord's Supper
The Lord's Supper is a sacrament of the New Testament, in which, by giving and receiving bread and wine according to the appointment of Jesus Christ, his death is shown forth (1 Cor. 11:26); and they that rightly receive it by faith are made partakers of his body and blood, with all his benefits, to their spiritual nourishment, and growth in grace
(1 Cor. 10:16-17).

o Christ is spiritually present in the Lord's Supper to the faith of the recipient, no less than the elements are present to the senses of the recipient (1 Cor. 11:23-26).
Catholic View of the Lord's Supper
Transubstantiation. Through the words of consecration the bread and wine are transformed into the actual body and blood of Christ.

1. Objection: Catholics pair the doctrine of transubstantiation with the doctrine of the mass, and teach that through the Lord's Supper Christ is actually sacrificed again and the benefits of his death are applied to believers. This contradicts the once-for-all nature of Christ's sacrifice (Heb. 10:11-14).

2. Objection: By definition, a sacrament is a sensible sign. If the elements transform into the actual body and blood of Christ, they are no longer a sign, and the Supper ceases
to be a sacrament.

3. Objection: Christ cannot be physically present in the Lord's Supper, because Acts 3:21 says that he is physically present in heaven until the restoration of all things.
Lutheran View of the Lord's Supper
Lutherans believe in consubstantiation, although some Lutherans would object to this language. They believe Christ is physically present in, with and under the
elements.

1. Objection: Christ cannot be physically present in, with and under the elements, because Acts 3:21 says that he is physically present in heaven until the restoration of
all things.

2. The Lutheran doctrine of ubiquity, which states that Christ's divine attribute of omnipresence is communicated to his human nature, violates the Chalcedonian doctrine of the hypostatic union: two distinct natures (divine and human) in one person, with the distinction and property of each nature being preserved.
Baptist View of the Lord's Supper
The Lord's Supper is merely a memorial, not an actual means of grace. Christ is not present in the elements, but rather they are only symbols of his body and blood.

1. Objection: In 1 Cor. 10:16 Paul says that partaking in the Lord's Supper is participating in the body and blood of Christ. This means that real grace is conferred, and that there is more than a symbolic connection between the sign and the thing (Person) signified.

2. Objection: A mere memorial cannot account for the need to examine ourselves, or for God's judgment on those who partake in an unworthy manner (1 Cor. 11:27-29).

> The severity of the penalties for partaking in an unworthy manner compels us to see the relationship between the sign and the thing (Person) signified.