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Lessons in the Lutheran Confessions
Concerning Both Kinds in the Lord’s Supper – part 7

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1 Corinthians 10:16

From the Confessions: The Defense of the Augsburg Confession

Concerning Both Kinds in the Lord’s Supper 

They also refer to “Lay Communion.” Yet this is not a reference to the mere use of one kind, but a denial of both. For whenever priests are commanded to use Lay Communion, it means that they have been removed from the ministry of consecration. The adversaries are not ignorant of this, but they abuse the ignorance of the uneducated, who, when they hear of Lay Communion, immediately think of the custom of our time, that only a part of the Sacrament is given to the laity.

Consider their impudence. Recounting reasons why both parts are not given, Gabriel says that a distinction should be made between laity and clergy. That this is the chief reason why the refusal of one part is defended, is beyond question. In this way, the status of the clergy is more highly exalted through a religious rite. To put it mildly, this is a human design, and its purpose is obvious.

Pulling It Together

Who is elevated or remembered in such a distinction between clergy and laity? Is it Christ? Or is it the clergy who are given the greater dignity? If we place our entire focus upon Jesus, we will remember that he gave us his body, and shed for us his blood—that all might participate by drinking from that cup of Christ’s own blood. And so, we do both, breaking bread and blessing cup together, in remembrance of what he instituted among us. In doing so, we enjoy the forgiveness of sins. May it never be that we withhold this great benefit of the faith because of class distinction. .

Prayer: Thank you, Lord, for including me in your gift of grace. Amen.

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