Monday, February 16, 2009

Paedo-Communion in Presbyterian System

The Christ the Centre panel host Cornelius Venema on his forthcoming book on Paedocommunion in the Presbyterian system. Quite a good discussion on the biblical and theological issues involved. I did get the feeling that one of the interviewers seemed a bit disappointed that Venema did not think that those who lean towards Paedocommunion should be denied ordination, even if they agree to live by credo-communion as the denominational position (or maybe I'm reading that into it). Venema was somewhat circumspect, but gracious in reply. Worth listening to.

The logic of the baptist system is that if you are baptized then you should be accepted to the table of the Lord (which is perhaps why many Baptist converts to Presbyterianism support paedocommunion). Can anyone tell me the theological rationale in the Methodist and Anglican traditions for paedocommunion?

HT: Scott Clark


R. Scott Clark said...

Hi Mike,

One minor correction: It's Cornelis. No "u."


Marty said...

Yeah Mike, the usual justification for paedocommunion is 1 Cor. 10:3-4 where all Israel had communion (via manna feeding and water from the rock), they "ate the same spiritual food and drank the same spiritual drink". And, of course, that included infants.

Paul's argument is that Israel had baptism (in the Exodus) and the Lord's Supper just like the Corinthians did, but that did not automatically protect Israel from apostasy. So the Corinthians better watch out too.


ps: And of course Israel's baptism in the Exodus included infants. Oh no, what did I say!

sujomo said...

Hi Mike,

Exodus 12 clearly describes children participating in the Passover celebration. If we take the standard Reformed line that circumcision parallels baptism and that passover parallels the Lord's supper then does that mean paedocommunion!?

I think you will find that Glenn Davies has written on paedocommunion.


CodeMaster said...

Cans open, worms everywhere!

If circumcision parallels baptism, then why are women baptized? Did John the Baptist baptize infants? Nevertheless, I do see the covenant comparison in acts. Perhaps using the Mosaic covenant as a parallel is more useful. Those people were all baptized (sprinkled in blood) and were men, women and children. Or maybe I don't quite get it yet.

Regarding communion: Clearly the Lord's Supper is for believers only. It's clear in it's context. But I think when a child makes a credible confession of faith, that that child should be admited. Children mature at differing ages and the idea that an artificial line is drawn for access to a believers sacrament is seems unscriptural.