The Baptist Catechism – Questions 93-104, The Ordinary Means of Grace

Q.93: What are the outward means whereby Christ communicateth to us the benefits of redemption?

A. The outward and ordinary means whereby Christ communicateth to us the benefits of redemption are His ordinances, especially the Word, baptism, and the Lord’s Supper; all which means are made effectual to the elect for salvation.

( Matthew 28:19-20; Acts 2:42, 46-47 )

 

Q.94: How is the Word made effectual to salvation?

A. The Spirit of God maketh the reading, but especially the preaching of the Word, an effectual means of convincing and converting sinners, and of building them up in holiness and comfort through faith unto salvation.

( Nehemiah 8:8; Psalm 19:8; Acts 20:32; 26:18; Romans 1:15-16; 10:13-17; 15:4; 1Corinthians 14:24-25; 1Timothy 3:15-17 )

 

Q.95: How is the Word to be read and heard, that it may become effectual to salvation?

A. That the Word may become effectual to salvation, we must attend thereunto with diligence, preparation, and prayer; receive it with faith and love, lay it up in our hearts, and practice it in our lives.

( Psalm 119:11, 18; Proverbs 8:34; Luke 8:15; 2Thessalonians 2:10; Hebrews 4:2; James 1:25; 1Peter 2:1-2 )

 

Q.96: How do baptism and the Lord’s Supper become effectual means of salvation?

A. Baptism and the Lord’s Supper become effectual means of salvation, not for any virtue in them, but only by the blessing of Christ, and the working of the Spirit in those that by faith receive them.

( Matthew 3:11; 1Corinthians 3:6-7; 12:3; 1Peter 3:21 )

 

Q.97: What is baptism?

A. Baptism is an ordinance of the New Testament instituted by Christ, to be unto the party baptized a sign of his fellowship with Him, in His death, burial, and resurrection; of his being engrafted into Him; of remission of sins; and of giving up himself unto God through Jesus Christ, to live and walk in newness of life.

( Matthew 28:19; Mark 1:4; Acts 2:38; 22:16; Romans 6:3-5; Galatians 3:27; Colossians 2:12 )

 

Q.98: To whom is baptism to be administered?

A. Baptism is to be administered to all those who actually profess repentance toward God, faith in and obedience to our Lord Jesus Christ, and to none other.

( Matthew 3:6; 28:19; Mark 16:16; Acts 2:37-38; 8:36-38 )

 

Q.99: Are the infants of such as are professing believers to be baptized?

A. The infants of such as are professing believers are not to be baptized, because there is neither command nor example in the Holy Scriptures, or certain consequence from them to baptize such.

( Proverbs 30:6; Luke 3:7-8 )

 

Q.100: How is baptism rightly administered?

A. Baptism is rightly administered by immersion, or dipping the whole body of the party in water, into the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit, according to Christ’s institution, and the practice of the apostles, and not by sprinkling or pouring of water, or dipping some part of the body, after the tradition of men.

( Matthew 3:16; 28:19-20; John 3:23; Acts 8:38; 10:48; Romans 6:4; Colossians 2:12 )

 

Q.101: What is the duty of such who are rightly baptized?

A. It is the duty of such who are rightly baptized to give up themselves to some particular and orderly church of Jesus Christ, that they might walk in all the commandments and ordinances of the Lord blameless.

( Luke 1:6; Acts 2:41-42; 5:13-14; 9:26; 1Peter 2:5 )

 

Q.102: What is the Lord’s Supper?

A. The Lord’s Supper is an ordinance of the New Testament, instituted by Jesus Christ; wherein by giving and receiving bread and wine, according to His appointment, His death is shown forth, and the worthy receivers are, not after a corporal and carnal manner, but by faith, made partakers of His body and blood, with all His benefits, to their spiritual nourishment and growth in grace.

( Matthew 26:26-28; 1Corinthians 10:16; 11:23-26 )

 

Q.103: Who are the proper subjects of this ordinance?

A. They who have been baptized upon a personal profession of their faith in Jesus Christ, and repentance from dead works.

( Acts 2:41-42 )

 

Q.104: What is required to be worthy of receiving the Lord’s Supper?

A. It is required of them that would worthily partake of the Lord’s Supper, that they examine themselves of their knowledge to discern the Lord’s body, of their faith to feed upon Him, of their repentance, love, and new obedience, lest coming unworthily they eat and drink judgment to themselves.

( 1Corinthians 5:7-8; 10:16-17; 11:28-29, 31; 2Corinthians 13:5 )

LBCF of 1677/1689 – Chapter Thirty, Of the Lord’s Supper

1. The supper of the Lord Jesus was instituted by him the same night wherein he was betrayed, to be observed in his churches, unto the end of the world, for the perpetual remembrance, and shewing forth the sacrifice of himself in his death, confirmation of the faith of believers in all the benefits thereof, their spiritual nourishment, and growth in him, their further engagement in, and to all duties which they owe to him; and to be a bond and pledge of their communion with him, and with each other.
1 Corinthians 11:23-26; 1 Corinthians 10:16, 17,21 )

2. In this ordinance Christ is not offered up to his Father, nor any real sacrifice made at all for remission of sin of the quick or dead, but only a memorial of that one offering up of himself by himself upon the cross, once for all; and a spiritual oblation of all possible praise unto God for the same. So that the popish sacrifice of the mass, as they call it, is most abominable, injurious to Christ’s own sacrifice the alone propitiation for all the sins of the elect.
Hebrews 9:25, 26, 28; 1 Corinthians 11:24; Matthew 26:26, 27 )

3. The Lord Jesus hath, in this ordinance, appointed his ministers to pray, and bless the elements of bread and wine, and thereby to set them apart from a common to a holy use, and to take and break the bread; to take the cup, and, they communicating also themselves, to give both to the communicants.
1 Corinthians 11:23-26, etc. )

4. The denial of the cup to the people, worshipping the elements, the lifting them up, or carrying them about for adoration, and reserving them for any pretended religious use, are all contrary to the nature of this ordinance, and to the institution of Christ.
Matthew 26:26-28; Matthew 15:9; Exodus 20:4, 5 )

5. The outward elements in this ordinance, duly set apart to the use ordained by Christ, have such relation to him crucified, as that truly, although in terms used figuratively, they are sometimes called by the names of the things they represent, to wit, the body and blood of Christ, albeit, in substance and nature, they still remain truly and only bread and wine, as they were before.
1 Corinthians 11:27; 1 Corinthians 11:26-28 )

6. That doctrine which maintains a change of the substance of bread and wine, into the substance of Christ’s body and blood, commonly called transubstantiation, by consecration of a priest, or by any other way, is repugnant not to Scripture alone, but even to common sense and reason, overthroweth the nature of the ordinance, and hath been, and is, the cause of manifold superstitions, yea, of gross idolatries.
Acts 3:21; Luke 14:6, 39; 1 Corinthians 11:24, 25 )

7. Worthy receivers, outwardly partaking of the visible elements in this ordinance, do then also inwardly by faith, really and indeed, yet not carnally and corporally, but spiritually receive, and feed upon Christ crucified, and all the benefits of his death; the body and blood of Christ being then not corporally or carnally, but spiritually present to the faith of believers in that ordinance, as the elements themselves are to their outward senses.
1 Corinthians 10:16; 1 Corinthians 11:23-26 )

8. All ignorant and ungodly persons, as they are unfit to enjoy communion with Christ, so are they unworthy of the Lord’s table, and cannot, without great sin against him, while they remain such, partake of these holy mysteries, or be admitted thereunto; yea, whosoever shall receive unworthily, are guilty of the body and blood of the Lord, eating and drinking judgment to themselves.
2 Corinthians 6:14, 15; 1 Corinthians 11:29; Matthew 7:6 )