Vol. 8, No. 11
Since You Asked
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Names may be included at the discretion of the Editor unless querists request their names be withheld. Please check our Archive for the answer to your question before submitting it; there are over 1,000 articles in the Archive addressing numerous biblical topics. Submit a Question to GGO.
...But one of the statements in that article did cause me to do a double-take. The statement was this: "The only act of worship limited to the first day of the week in the church's assembly is observance of the Lord's Supper (Acts 20:7). Each of the other four acts of worship may also occur on other days of the week: giving (Acts 4:32-36; 5:1-10)." My question is this: How can one believe the idea that the act of worship known as "giving," or "the collection of the saints," or "laying by in store," can be carried out on any other day of the week, after you read I Corinthians 16:2, where Paul specifically says that the collection is to take place "Upon the first day of the week"? I have a hard time reconciling those two opposing schools of thought. Again, I look forward to hearing from you whenever you get a chance. Thanks. Josh
At least some preachers, who I respect as students of the Bible, adamantly declare that the church can only receive funds on the first day of the week in the collection during the public worship. Though neither adamant nor dogmatic, I sincerely believe they are mistaken, and that Scripture does not substantiate that doctrinal posture.
The question is essentially that if 1 Corinthians 16:1-2 authorizes a collection in the Lord's Day public assembly (and it does), how, then, can a collection be taken or given on any day in addition to the Lord's Day? The answer is simple. Consider Acts 20:7, the only passage of Scripture in the Bible by which the frequency and day on which God intends for Christians to observe the Lord's Supper. Christians rightfully contend that the Lord's Supper is authorized for observance on the first day of every week in the public worship assembly, and further, that no other occasion or day on which to observe the Lord's Supper is authorized by Scripture. Amen!
However, the truthfulness of the biblical doctrine of observing the Lord's Supper exclusively on the first day of every week in the public worship assembly is not proved by Acts 20:7 alone; consideration of the rest of the New Testament must be entertained before one can correctly ascertain that observing the Lord's Supper exclusively on the first day of the week in the public worship assembly is biblically correct. Acts 20:7 authorizes the observance of the Lord's Supper on the first day of each week in the public worship assembly, but that is all that it does. Only after examining the balance of New Testament Scripture and failing to find the New Testament church (under inspired, apostolic guidance) providing an additional example of observing the Lord's Supper on another occasion or on another day than for the Lord's Day public worship, can one correctly conclude that observing the Lord's Supper exclusively on the first day of the week in the public worship assembly is biblically correct. It takes the authorization of Acts 20:7 for Lord's Day observance of the Lord's Supper in the public assembly and the absence of any other Scripture for its observance on another occasion or another day before one can correctly conclude that the Lord's Supper can only be observed on the first day of the week in the public assembly.
Yet, a second act of worship also figures prominently in Acts 20:7 (preaching, on either the giving end or the receiving end), but I know of no one who argues that preaching is biblically limited exclusively to the first day of each week in the public worship assembly. Why? It is simple. The New Testament is full of examples of preaching occurring not only on the first day of the week in public worship, but on other occasions and on days not specified as the first day of the week. A specific example is Acts 13:42 where the verse states that the preaching occurred not on the first day of the week in the assembly of Christians, but on the seventh day of the week in the Jewish synagogue. Therefore, though Acts 20:7 authorizes preaching on the first day of each week in the public worship of the Lord's church, additional New Testament Scriptures authorize preaching on additional occasions and on additional days of the week. I have through the use of several sentences verbalized what probably we take for granted respecting observing the Lord's Supper exclusively on the first day of each week while observing preaching on the first day of each week as well as on additional occasions and on additional days of the week.
With that in mind and going back to 1 Corinthians 16:1-2, do one or more New Testament passages in any way teach that giving could occur on days other than the first day of the week outside the public worship? Or, is it the case that 1 Corinthians 16:1-2 authorizes giving upon the first day of the week in the public assembly, and no other New Testament passage states, provides an example or implies giving could occur on an additional day of the week or on an additional occasion, so that we conclude therefore that giving is relegated exclusively to the first day of the week in the public worship?
It only takes one verse of Scripture (Acts 20:7) in the absence of verses to the contrary to rightly conclude that observance of the Lord's Supper is limited exclusively to the Lord's Day in the public worship. It only takes one verse of Scripture (Acts 13:42) to determine that preaching may occur on occasions and days different from the first day of the week public worship assembly (Acts 20:7). Likewise, it only takes one verse of Scripture to determine that giving may occur on occasions and days different from the first day of the week public worship assembly. Acts 5:2 and the context in which it is found is one such verse: "And kept back part of the price, his wife also being privy to it, and brought a certain part, and laid it at the apostles' feet." This occurred three hours before this man's wife arrived on the scene (Acts 5:7). In the intervening three hours the man of verse 2 died suddenly and was buried (Acts 5:5-6).
There is nothing in the context that identifies either the day as being the first day of the week or the occasion as being the public worship assembly of the church. In addition, few of us (preachers or preached to) would like to consider this passage as a pattern for protracted worship of three plus hours on the Lord's Day in the public worship of the church. Statistically, without some contextual evidence contrariwise, the occasion of Acts 5:2 was probably a day of the week other than the first day of the week, and hence an occasion other than the public worship of the church on the Lord's Day. Did giving occur; yes, it did. This is an example of giving to the church on a day other than the first day of the week.
I hasten to add that I do not encourage the church to take a public collection on a day other than the first day of the week or on an occasion other than the public worship of the church on the first day of the week. However, does the New Testament prohibit a Christian giving funds to the church on a day in addition to the first day of the week? Not only no, but the New Testament provides an example of a Christian giving funds to the church on a day in addition to the first day of the week. Is our praying limited to the public worship on the first day of each week? No, because we can find New Testament Scripture for prayer by Christians outside the public worship assembly on the first day of the week and on days other than the first day of the week. The same is true of preaching. The same is true of singing. The same is true of giving. However, the same is not true of the Lord's Supper.
Can you tell me what characters in the Bible were simular to Christ? Lovada K. Washington
To my surprise when I looked, the first definition in Merriam Webster's Collegiate Dictionary for the word "type" is: "a person or thing (as in the Old Testament) believed to foreshadow another (as in the New Testament)." Through "types," some biblical characters and Jesus Christ shared some similarities.
The high priest under Judaism was a type of Jesus Christ who is the High Priest under Christianity (Hebrews 3:1 9:6-12, 25). Melchizedek, the high priest under Patriarchy, was also a type of Jesus Christ who is the High Priest under Christianity (Hebrews 5:10; 6:20). Melchizedek is further identified through his Patriarchal priesthood generally as a type of Jesus Christ (Hebrews 7:15-17). The Passover lamb under Judaism commemorating God's determination to bring death to the first born throughout Egypt prior to the Exodus, but passing over the Israelites, was a type of Jesus Christ our sacrificial Lamb under Christianity (John 1:29, 36; 1 Corinthians 5:7; 1 Peter 1:19). The annual sacrifices (animals) under Judaism for atonement typified the sacrifice of Jesus Christ once for the remission of sins under Christianity (Hebrews 10:1-4, 10). Adam was a type of Christ, Adam bringing sin into the world among humanity and Jesus Christ taking sin away (Romans 5:14; 1 Corinthians 15:45). Moses, the lawgiver of Judaism and prophet, was a type of Jesus Christ (Deuteronomy 18:15-18; Acts 3:20, 22; 7:37; Hebrews 3:2-6). David as king and ancestor of Jesus Christ typified our Lord (Ezekiel 37:24; Acts 2:29-31; 13:22-23). Jonah typified Jesus Christ as well (Jonah 1:17; Matthew 12:40). The brass serpent in the wilderness wandering after the inauguration of Judaism was a type of Jesus Christ (John 3:14-15). The manna eaten by the Israelites during their wilderness wandering following the Exodus typified Jesus Christ who is our Bread of Life under Christianity (John 6:32-35).
I suspect that there are several more Old Testament types directly relative to Jesus Christ in addition to the ones briefly noted above. These, though, suffice to illustrate the preparation God made throughout centuries previous to the New Testament era to help us know Jesus Christ better.
Merriam Webster's Collegiate Dictionary. CD-ROM. Springfield: Merriam-Webster, 1993.