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Can Lord's Supper be observed in evening? By women?

Posted: Sun Jan 27, 2013 2:25 pm
by email
I am a faithful member of the Church of Christ where I was raised, and I'm 34 and have been a Christian for 21yrs. I recently ran across an article online when studying the Lord's supper that brought two questions to my mind that I have never considered and I would appreciate your opinion on the matter.

1. Should the Lord's supper be observed in the evening since it was instituted other words, do we have the authority to move it to a morning worship time?

2. Are women included in scripture for observing the Lord's supper? In Cor. 11:23-34 only men were mentioned..."Let a man examine himself"..."For he that eateth"...and vs 33 says "brethren"...

I ask with a sincere heart wanting to please God. Thanks for your time and consideration

The Lord's Supper

Posted: Mon Jan 28, 2013 8:29 pm
by m273p15c
Thanks for the good question. There's no need to apologize or explain your motives. :) These are good questions.

About #1, this specific question is but one application of the generic question, "Are we obligated to follow all approved examples in the New Testament?" And, the answer, as I understand the Bible, is, no. We have an article devoted to that question here:

This is an old article, and it probably needs a lot of work. But, the gist is that you have to put everything together. ... In the Lord's original command, He specified that there would be a specific "day" (Gr, hemera) in which He would keep the feast with His disciples (Matthew 26:29). That word always means a 24-hour time - not an age or an era, like "back in my day ...". So, we know it is only a specific day that concerned the Lord. When we look at Acts 20:7, we learn the day and the frequency, which is consistent with other activities (I Corinthians 16:1-2) - "the first day of the week". Since the Lord was concerned with the day, not the time of day, we know to overlook the time, except as it is related to some other point in the context. ... In short, all the Scriptures point to the day being significant, not the time.

About #2, the word for man in these passages, Gr. anthropos, is the generic word for "man", just like in English. You have to look at the context to know if it means: human-being, male, father, son, etc. Often it just means "person" (see Friberg, Thayer, and several other Greek lexicons). So, there's no limitation in that context to specific genders.

I pray this is helpful to you, and I look forward to hearing your thoughts.

May God help us to have a sincere love of truth (II Thessalonians 2:9-12),


RE: The Lord's Supper

Posted: Mon Jan 28, 2013 10:07 pm
by larry
Thanks for visiting and for your good questions. I will try to give you a scriptural response.

1. Regarding whether there is a particular time of day to observe the Lord’s Supper, first let us look at the larger picture. Jesus instituted the Lord’s Supper when He and the apostles were observing the Passover (Mt. 26:26-29). It did happen to occur in the evening in an upper room. When Jesus was asked about the place to worship by the woman at the well in John 4:20, His response was, “Woman believe me, the hour is coming when neither in this mountain nor in Jerusalem will you worship the Father…. But the hour is coming when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth.” Jesus is telling her that place is not important. It is how we do it that is important.

Then He says in I Cor. 11:26, “For as often as you eat this bread and drink this cup, you proclaim the Lord’s death until he comes.” He is saying here that whenever you partake of the Lord’s Supper remember what you are doing. He doesn’t give any time of day, or any particular day here. However, as we read our New Testament in an effort to please our Lord trying to understand what He wants us to do, we come upon Acts 20:7 and learn that they met and partook of the Lord’s Supper on the first day of the week. So, we learn a day upon which they did partake. We learn from other passages that the first day of the week was important to Christians and a day for them meeting together (I Cor. 16:2). Therefore, if we partake on the first day of the week, we are following the example we read about in the New Testament.

Jesus said the place is not important, and we can conclude that time of day is also not important. If we become too attached to meaningless details, we will start saying people have to go to Jerusalem and meet in an upper room at night. When we meet together on the first day of the week to partake of the Lord’s Supper, and we do it in the right manner (I Cor. 11:27), we have fulfilled what the Lord expects.

2. Now to your second question. Yes, women are included in those who are to partake of the Lord’s Supper the same as men. The word “man” in I Cor. 11:28 is from the Greek word, “ANTHROPOS”. W. E. Vines dictionary of New Testament words defines this Greek word as, “generally, of a human being, male or female, without reference to sex or nationality.” Thayer in his Greek-English Lexicon of the New Testament defines the word in an almost identical way. Therefore, the word applies to both male and female. In fact, the ESV, which is a very good translation, translates the word “person” rather than “man.”

The same definition applies to the word brethren in verse 33. The footnote in the ESV says, “or brothers and sisters.”

I applaud you for your sincere heart and wanting to be sure to please God. If you have further questions, please let me know.


RE: The Lord's Supper

Posted: Mon Jan 28, 2013 10:38 pm
by email
Thank you for such a speedy reply! I figured that it would be extremely difficult to pinpoint an exact time for partaking of the Lord's supper and that "first day of the week" was the most important detail. I don't want to become too legalistic when interpreting the scriptures but I always want to examine them carefully. I also wanted a better answer in case I was questioned regarding this matter. Thanks again for your quick response

RE: The Lord's Supper

Posted: Mon Jan 28, 2013 10:38 pm
by larry
I think you have the correct approach to interpreting the Scriptures. I am thankful to be of some help.