Poll on Supporting a New Church Plant

Discussion in 'General Baptist Discussions' started by Dr. Bob, Aug 7, 2010.

  1. Dr. Bob

    Dr. Bob
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    Unofficial poll (no options, just up for comments) on your reaction to this situation. A new church is started and is 100% solid Baptist. Good preaching, good music, biblical standards (even though most are new Christians and have a long ways to go to maturity).

    Church planter asked for support to help with finding a building, etc, as well as helping with his bi-vo income.

    Issue: This new church uses wine at communion. It offers both leavened welchade and unleavened wine, clearly indicated. They believe wine is the biblical position, but understand that some dare not touch even a sip so make accomodation for the weaker brethren.

    Led by a state pastor who is noted for his "abstinence only" position on alcohol, a number of churches will not help this new work. Again, the new work is 99.9% compatible in doctrine and practice, varying only in the communion elements.

    No money, bad-mouthing the new work, damning the pastor, etc etc and "unless you change your church practice, not a penny from our churches" mandate. Talk about "lording" over another church and telling that "autonomous" church how it must act!!

    So . . balcony is open. I know many here are of the "abstinence" camp and we've had discussions on that. But do you have churches in your "group" that would not have an issue with this extremely minor optional use of alcohol? Would you support a church like this new plant that uses wine in communion? Would you lord over another congregation and demand they follow your practice or no fellowship/support?

    Thanks.
     
  2. Tom Bryant

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    I am not certain. I would hope we would simply because Sarasota county needs Bible preaching churches that are evangelistic.

    An Aside: I am not certain that the phrase "autonomous" ought to apply in this example. They are not self supporting since they are asking for support in alot of areas. They are more of a mission church which is usually seen part of the "mother" church.
     
  3. Dr. Bob

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    autonomous (auto = self, nomos = governing) means self-governing, not self-supporting.

    The issue would be "doctrinal" (a church will not give to support such mission work because they are not in agreement) but that is faulty reasonning in this case, since the Bible teaches "temperance" and not the man-made nonsense of millionair Welch and his promotion of abstinence

    The concept of "mothering" is another issue. I have seen horror stories of that scenario and know most other church planters (like myself) are simply veteran pastors who see a need and God does the work.
     
  4. Tom Bryant

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    I have a passing understanding of what autonomous means. ;)
     
  5. abcgrad94

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    Wow, this is a toughie but I'll be completely honest here. My grandfather was an alcoholic. I could not, in good conscience, financially support a church that offered alcohol as communion. That doesn't mean I'd badmouth the pastor or his work or refuse to talk to him, etc. Just because I disagree (strongly) with the practice does not mean I would be unkind about it. No other 100% Baptist church I know of in my area would financially support a church like this. There are some who WOULD make a HUGE deal out of it and refuse to associate in any way.
     
  6. Dale-c

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    We do not use any sort of alcohol at our church but we would certainly support a baptist church that did.

    I am curious to know what those who would not support a church for this reason would do with other issues?
    I am curious what the issues would be that they would tolerate and which ones they wouldn't?
     
  7. Zenas

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    My wife grew up on a rural Southern Baptist church not far from Louisville that used wine in communion. Apparently it wasn't an issue because the church was always in good standing with the county association as well as the KBC and the SBC. I can understand why a church would not use wine but it should not be a matter for dissension with other churches.

    That being said, all churches have limited resources and where to use them (or not) is really their prerogative, just like using wine is the prerogative of the start up church.

    Dr. Bob, somehow I sense you are close to this situation. Are you?
     
    #7 Zenas, Aug 7, 2010
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 7, 2010
  8. SolaSaint

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    My question would be why ask a number of other churches to except what is clearly a difficult situation and instead be willing to change themselves.
     
  9. jcjordan

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    This is something I just can't understand about most baptists. If we are so concerned about doing one ordinance (baptism) in the what we see as the biblical way (immersion), what don't we care about the elements of communion being done in the biblical way (wine)? Wine is a much better representation of our Savior's blood than grape juice.
     
  10. Dr. Bob

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    Not my situation. My church uses wine only. We firmly believe that the elements are SPECIAL and not just "happen to be what's at hand" when Jesus instituted the Lord's Supper.

    If it could be just the common "at hand" items, wonder bread & chocolate milk or pizza & pepsi would be appropriate today.

    Unleavened (fermented) wine was ALL that was available during the feast of unleavened bread 8-day period. They could NOT even have a bottle of leavened juice in the house. Stoning offense!!

    Yet some Baptists of the modern type (last one hundred years) say cannot use real wine. For 1900 years Christians were terrible sinners using wine at communion until just the recent century. We have been duped. Talk about the need for "someone" to CHANGE - maybe those with the new-fangled abstinence standeeeerd made by man.

    We are not self-supporting but we are autonomous. If another church says we are wrong doctrinally, that is there [misguided] opinion. I would not support a church that is, say, arminian/pelagian or kjvonly. But this is ludicrous.
     
  11. freeatlast

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    Bob first off I wish I could find a church like you described. Yes most tell you that this is their church but in practice I have not found one to date. Now about your question and the answer is a simple one. Any church that is giving the Lord's money not only has the right, but the responsibility to withhold that money if they feel in their convictions that their giving would sponsor something that is not glorifying to the Lord.
     
  12. SolaSaint

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    Bob, you said that all they had in Jesus day was fermented wine. We today are not in that situation so wouldn't it be OK to use grape juice instead? Does Jesus really care if we use wine or juice? If He does then I would be all for it for it doen't matter to me personally. I am concerned over making a brother or sister stumble though and if using wine causes this then I would use juice.
     
  13. Dr. Bob

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    Grape juice is not "unleavened".

    Today we have the great blessing of being able to buy real unleavened wine BUT have 99% of the alcohol removed. Purity of the elements as given by Jesus without risk of offending teatotalers!

    [​IMG]
     
  14. TCassidy

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    Rampent legalism, on both sides of this argument, should be avoided. We use unleavened, non-alcoholic grape juice (yes, such is available). We support a new church plant that uses wine. It is not an issue.

    Also, the church that refuses support is not "lording it over" the new work. The established church is under no obligation to support the new work and cannot enforce its will on the new church. Therefore the charge of "lording" is hyperbole. :)
     
  15. abcgrad94

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    None of us actually "do" communion just like Christ did anyway. The Jews celebrated the Passover. They didn't just drink the wine and eat unleavened bread. They had to get a perfect lamb, cook it a certain way, rid the home of all leaven, eat certain herbs, etc. The Passover was celebrated once a year.

    Our drinking a tiny cup of juice or wine and eating a little wafer cracker once a month or once a quarter really isn't the same thing. I would think if a church really wanted to be authentic and use REAL wine, they'd do the rest of the meal as well.

    Here in the Bible belt, the Catholic and some Presbyterian churches use real wine. If a Baptist church started doing that, we'd be viewed (even by unbelievers) as "liberal" Catholic sympathizers and it would be a stumblingblock for many, myself included. I'm speaking of the areas in KY and WV where I've lived most of my life.
     
  16. Robert Snow

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    All the churches I have attended use grape juice (I assume), but I've never asked them about it.

    Whether or not a church uses grape juice or wine would not matter to me in the least when it came to supporting them, as long as they preached the Gospel.

    The only question I would have is how using wine would affect someone who was an alcoholic, but I really don't know if that small amount of wine would be a problem for them or not.
     
  17. Jim1999

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    What if water was used as the liquid?

    Does it have to be unleavened bread?

    I thought the Lord's Supper to-day was symbolic anyway.

    Cheers,

    Jim
     
  18. Tom Butler

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    My sense is that the Passover meal and the Lord's Supper were separate
    events. The way I read the scripture, Jesus instituted the Lord's Supper following the Passover meal.

    And Paul did not tell the church at Corinth (I Cor 11) to observe the passover when he gave them instructions for proper observance of the Lord's Supper.
     
  19. Eagle

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    Simply, and well said.
     
  20. Zenas

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    This post is in response to abcgrad94 and to Tom Butler. The institution of the Lord's Supper came during the Passover seder, not ancillary to it. The Passover is a complex meal with many "courses" interspersed with four prayers and four questions. The traditional bread and cup of the Lord's supper, with the final hymn, are shown in Mark 14:11-26.

    There are a couple of clues that the cup passed around was the third cup of the seder (Passover). First, it is the only time in the seder that drinking wine is followed by a hymn (called the Great Hallel). Second, and perhaps most telling, is that the third cup is known in seder parlance as the cup of redemption/blessing. In 1 Corinthians 10:16 Paul says, "Is not the cup of blessing which we bless a sharing in the blood of Christ?" Paul, being intimately familiar with the Passover rituals, still called it the "cup of blessing." So we know it was the third cup. Also, we know that the third cup was preceded by the breaking and passing of the last piece of bread (matza). So these three elememts of the Passover seder--breaking of bread, passing of the cup and the final hymn--were preserved in the Lord's supper.

    Following the singing of the hymn, there is a 4th cup in the Passover seder. Scripture does not relate the drinking of a 4th cup and there has been some speculation as to why not. We really don't know but some say that the sour wine given to Jesus in John 16:29-30 is the "4th cup." It is logical and it would also help explain the coincidence that a hyssop branch was used for this purpose, just as a hyssop branch was used to apply blood to the door posts in Exodus 12:22. It may also indicate that Jesus wasn't using a metaphor when He prayed, "Let this cup pass from me."
     

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