Is it okay for a Baptist to observe Lent?

Discussion in '2000-02 Archive' started by Amazing_Grace, Feb 13, 2002.

  1. Amazing_Grace

    Amazing_Grace
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    I don't know much about the practice of Lent, and I was wondering why we don't practice it. Does it go against our beliefs or do we not practice it simply because it is a predominantly Catholic practice?
     
  2. Mike McK

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    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Amazing_Grace:
    I don't know much about the practice of Lent, and I was wondering why we don't practice it. Does it go against our beliefs or do we not practice it simply because it is a predominantly Catholic practice?<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    Actually, there are several protestant denominations that celebrate the Lenten season.

    Why would it be wrong?

    Mike
     
  3. Amazing_Grace

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    I don't know why it would be wrong, that's what I want to find out. [​IMG]

    I figured there was some reason why many who aren't Catholic don't observe it.
     
  4. Dr. Bob

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    Lent (40 days prior to Easter) is typical of the period of fasting Jesus endured. It began as a period of self-denial within the denominations that seek to gain God's favor or grace by works.

    The Bible does not command or imply any such slavish obedience to a 40-day period of self-denial. And because of its close links with works-oriented churches, I opt to stay away from it totally.

    When someone comes by the Clinic today with a circle of ash on their forehead, I think of them as involved in a pagan ritual. That is what the entire sacramental system of Catholicism is.

    Although I'm thinking about giving up water skiing for Lent myself. Hard to get through the ice this time of year, anyway.
     
  5. Amazing_Grace

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    I don't really know the history of the practice, but to me it comes across as a time when we give up something important to us because He gave up His life for us. It's not that the Bible tells us that we have to, or that we will gain grace by Him if we do, but that we can do it out of gratefulness.

    I don't know if this is how the Catholics see it, but it's how I do. Do you have a problem with the practice when it is done for this reason?

    I'm curious, were you serious about giving up skiing for Lent?
     
  6. Amazing_Grace

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    Am I wrong in my view of Lent? I only wish to do what the Lord would have me do. I would greatly appreciate all of your opinions.
     
  7. David Cooke Jr

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    I'm giving up chocolate for lent. I observe lent and deny myself that small pleasure b/c it focuses my attention on the coming of Easter and our Lord's sacrifice for us.
     
  8. fcs25

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    The primary reason I would have not to observe Lent is number one it is of Catholic origin.Two the Lords supper is the only NT memorial with any regular,fixed time frequency.Three Gal4:10-11...expressly warns us of the danger of giving religious significance to days not authorized by God.Number four binding people not to eat meat at certain times is a clear evidence of apostasy...1Tim4:1-3.

    I see no reason to observe religious holidays that stem from pagan origins and are clearly against the Bibles' teachings.It is just another form of legalism.
     
  9. rsr

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    How a period of fasting and prayer can be pagan is beyond me. If it's ritualistic, and not sincere, it's wrong. If it's from the heart, and with the proper motives, how can it be wrong?
     
  10. Rev. Joshua

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    Lent is one of the oldest observances of the Christian year, and like David I gave up chocolate this year.

    Observing Lent is a way of reminding ourselves that as Christians our lives do not follow the world's rhythms and priorities. There are plenty of baptist churches which observe the season, so it is safe to say that (like everything else) there is no one "baptist" position.

    Joshua

    P.S. David, don't forget that Sunday's aren't in Lent so you can stock up then [​IMG] .
     
  11. Miss Bobbie

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    From "Escape the Coming Night," study guide #3, by Dr. David Jeremiah:

    Babylon dates back to Genesis 10 and the building of the tower of Babel which many associate with Nimrod (Genesis 10:8). According to the records of ancient Babylon, Nimrod's wife was named Semiramis. In Assyria she was called Astarte; in Egypt, Isis; in Greece, Aphrodite; in Rome, Venus. This woman who originated in Babylon was the first high priestess of idolatry in the world.

    According to legend, Semiramis conceived a son miraculously by a sunbeam, and she offered him up as the promised deliverer of the earth. His name was Tammuz. When he reached manhood, he was killed by a wild boar but raised from the dead after 40 days of his mother's weeping. A "mother-child" cult developed from this which spread throughout the ancient world. In Assyria, it became Ishtar and Tammuz; in Phoenicia, Astarte and Baal; in Egypt, Isis and Osiris (or Horace); in Greece, Aphrodite and Eros; in Rome, Venus and Cupid.

    This religious cult developed a liturgy: worship by offering of wafers to Semiramis as the queen of heaven; 40 days of abstinence (Lent) memorializing the 40 days of her weeping; a feast following the abstinence to celebrate Tammuz's resurrection. Part of the celebration was the exchange of Ishtar eggs, symbolizing new life (our word "Easter" comes from the word Ishtar.) Even the sign of the cross used in mnay liturgies was the pointing of the letter "T" which stood for "Tammuz." If you recognize some aspects of modern Christianity in these descriptions, you are recognizing things that have their origin in the pagan religion of Babylon.

    Sources used by Dr. Jeremiah:
    "The Two Babylons" by Alexander Hislop
    "Expository Sermons of Revelation" by W.A. Criswell
    "The Revelation of Jesus Christ" by John F. Walvoord

    ~~~~

    False doctrine, as simple as that.
     
  12. Lorelei

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    Christmas and Easter also have pagan roots, but I will really try to refrain from opening that topic back up again! :D

    Let me see if I get this right. The only real instruction we have about fasting is:

    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>"Moreover when ye fast, be not, as the hypocrites, of a sad countenance: for they disfigure their faces, that they may appear unto men to fast. Verily I say unto you, They have their reward. But thou, when thou fastest, anoint thine head, and wash thy face; that thou appear not unto men to fast, but unto thy Father which is in secret: and thy Father, which seeth in secret, shall reward thee openly.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    By "observing" Lent, are we not openly confessing to fasting therefore denying ourself the true reward that should come from fasting?

    ~Lorelei
     
  13. Kiffin

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    We had a uplifting ASH WEDNESDAY service last night. Lent means Spring or “Rebirth”. It is a season for personal and corporate renewal and rededication to God.

    Ash Wednesday and Lent calls us to refocus our lives on the life, suffering, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. It is a call for us to Turn to God. Doesn't sound pagan does it?

    It is about rededicating our life back to Christ and remembering the tremendous sacrifice He gave for our sins. We begin a journey on Ash Wednesday that takes us
    over the next several weeks to Holy Week and Easter Sunday. But before we can go there, we need to be reminded why Christ died. Because of our sins. And we need to be reminded of the seriousness of our sins.

    Ash Wednesday is a call for Christ bride to repent. Easter is drawing near. How can we enjoy Easter while being bound to sins of lust, jealosy, hatred, anger ?

    Here is a outline of our ASH WEDNESDAY service from last night,


    PRELUDE

    THE SUMMARY OF THE LAW OF GOD - Matthew 22:37-40

    OPENING PRAYER

    SCRIPTURE READINGS - Isaiah 58:1-14, 1 Peter 2:9-11

    SERMON - Turn To Me! Joel 2:12-17


    TIME OF REFLECTION AND SELF EXAMINATION
    Please during this time reflect on what sins or addictions are hindering you spiritually. With the pen and paper in the pew, jot them down on the paper and
    fold the paper place it in the self sealed envelope and very quietly come place
    in bowl on the communion table. Ask the Lord to forgive you of these sins and give you release.

    CORPORATE CONFESSION OF SINS (unison prayer) - Psalms 51:1-17

    PROCESSIONAL OUTSIDE TO BONFIRE #202 AMAZING GRACE
    Please follow Pastor with you hymn book singing Amazing Grace as we reverently go outside to the Bon Fire where the sins written on the papers will be burned symbolizing the removal of these sins from our lives.

    BURNING AT THE BON FIRE


    PRAYER (Pastor) ALMIGHTY GOD, YOU
    HAVE CREATED US OUT OF THE DUST OF
    THE EARTH: GRANT THAT THESE ASHES
    MAY BE A SIGN OF OUR REPENTANCE,
    THAT WE MAY REMEMBER THAT IT
    IS ONLY BY YOUR GRACIOUS GIFT THAT
    WE ARE GIVEN EVERLASTING LIFE; THROUGH JESUS
    CHRIST OUR LORD.
    AMEN.


    HYMN # 282 The Family of God

    BENEDICTION - 2 Corinthians 13:14

    CLOSING PRAYER


    We did not do the Imposition of Ashes this year but certaintly it is Biblical. I think most Baptist don't celebrate it because they do not know what Ash Wednesday, Lent is about but it certaintly is a humbling time and makes Easter Sunday more special.

    [ February 14, 2002: Message edited by: Kiffin ]

    [ February 14, 2002: Message edited by: Kiffin ]
     
  14. rsr

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    Kiffin: Sounds like a nice service.

    The other reason Baptists don't observe it is they're afraid someone will mistake them for papists. ;)
     
  15. David Cooke Jr

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    Kiffin,
    thank you for sharing this service with us.
     
  16. Kiffin

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    Thanks rsr and David for your very kind comments. [​IMG]
     
  17. rlvaughn

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    I'm not giving up my chocolate!! :eek:

    There are probably a number of reasons that different kinds of Baptists do not observe Lent. My reason would be that of not observing religious holidays that have neither New Testament command nor example. In a number of "primitivistic" type Baptist churches, we do not regard any of the normal religious holidays, including Christmas and Easter. This is only related to the church assembly. What individual members chose to do in these matters are their own business.
     
  18. tyndale1946

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    I belong to one of those Primitive Churches that Brother Robert spoke of and we don't observe any religious holidays as it is unscriptual. What you do is between you and God and I only speak for myself. Yes I do decorate a xmas tree every December to keep peace in the family... Brother Glen [​IMG]
     
  19. Dr. Bob

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    Kiffin - what kind of "Baptist" church do you attend? I am serious. It is a rarity out in the West.

    I have not known any around our neck of the woods to promote a service like that or observance of the Lenten season. Except for maybe the most liberal ABC church with a woman pastor . . . :rolleyes:
     
  20. TomVols

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    To me, it all comes down to why one would want to observe the Lenten tradition. If the motives are Biblical and pure, then one can make a case. Hopefully, every day is a day of sacrifice for us and every day is a day we recall to mind the ultimate sacrifice Jesus made in order to die a substitutionary death on the cross for the sins of those who would believe.
     

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