Communion: Unity Divided?
The night before our Lord and Savior was betrayed, arrested, beaten, scourged, and crucified for the sins of the world, He prayed to His heavenly Father that His followers might all be one (Jn. 17), thus proving to the world that He was indeed the Son of the living God (vss. 20-23). Such oneness and unity though, He repeatedly indicated throughout, could only occur as a result of His disciples devoting themselves to following His word alone (vss. 6 – 8, 14, 17, 19, 20 – 21).
Today however, there are several terrible fissures – great, ghastly, grizzly and ungodly wounds and divisions – hampering the health, well-being, and evangelistic effectiveness, of the once one and unified, but now beleaguered and deeply divided body, bride, and church of Jesus Christ. Sadly, amongst the worst of atrocities, the greatest of ironies, and the most terrible of tragedies, is the fact that one of the most horrific wounds and divisions in the entire blood-bought body of Christ, revolves around the very event that ought most to unite us – communion!
If you examine the 2018 edition of the Directory of Churches of Christ in the United States, you will find that in many of the small towns as well as major cities across this land, there is a multiplicity of places wherein our brethren are deeply, sharply, and needlessly divided, over – of all things – the containers to be used in the communion celebration! In fact, it appears that a great number of those of the “one cup” persuasion are so serious about their perspective, that they not only militantly refuse to fellowship their brethren who use multiple, individual, communion cups, but have actually convinced themselves that those who use more than one are so sinning as to perish because of it.
Where did such an idea originate? Why and how is it so aggressively defended? Are they right? If not, why not? What can possibly be done to bring us all back to the same Biblical understanding, so that we might once again be the one, united body which Jesus prayed we would be?
This coming Thursday evening, January 24th, beginning at 7 Central, I have been blessed by God to have been given the very special privilege of discussing just these sorts of questions with the good brethren at the Gospel Broadcasting Network on GBNLive (Via Facebook Live). You are invited to watch/listen/join in, as we discuss the contents of the book, “Clearing Up The Confusion – The Cup, The Cross, And The Chaos” (see www.amazon.com/author/douglasdingley). You can also call in at 662-874-5508, or e-mail questions in advance to GBNLive@gbntv.org.