The Lord’s Supper

Pastor Ernie Lassman of  Messiah-Lutheran-Church  in Seattle, WA  teaches about the Lord’s Supper .





Anything here that maybe you never realized before?


Anything here that you believe Pastor Lassman is getting wrong?




PS- This is a bible study…not a sermon.  There is a difference (or ought be).

Would anyone care to explain the difference?





12 Responses

  1. Bible Study=Teaching the faith; doctrine; “what does this mean,” and “what does that mean…FOR me.

    Sermon=God’s Word delivered to His people in the Divine Service. It is God speaking His Word through the pastor to bring us the Gospel–the good news of our sins/sinfulness forgiven–really FOR us–through the work of His Son, Jesus Christ. It is a Means of Grace–that is, a means through which God’s Grace (unmerited favor) becomes effective for us and strengthens the gift of faith.

    I bet Pr. Lassmann goes into this in another session on the LS, but, someone who is blown away by the Real Presence is probably going to be just as blown away by the concept of what the Means of Grace actually do–they communicate and effectuate Forgiveness of Sins to and FOR the recipient.

  2. Jonathan,

    Thanks you, sir.

    Nice job explaining the difference.

  3. Steve,
    Totally off topic, but I recall you once posted about the movie The Stoning of Soraya M. This blogger posts a movie every Saturday night, and it’s available here

    if anyone hasn’t seen it yet and would like to. It’ll probably only be up for one day.

  4. Thanks, RL!

    I appreciate that link.

    – Steve

  5. A Bible Study is teaching time with clear refutation of error. And it need be centered on the person and work of Jesus.

    A sermon is to be a time of execution of the law and proclamation of the forgiveness of sin due to the finished work of Jesus.

    Wow! Jesus is all wrapped up in all that!

    Do I get a gold star or a puppy sticker? 😛

    God’s peace. †

  6. St. David,

    Two gold stars! ( I owe you one from a while back)

    I agree with you 100%. Slay the hearer with the law, and raise them again with the gospel.

    And this God does (or not) through His Word.

    The Word is DONE to us.

    Thanks, my friend!

    Peace of the Lord be with you, also!

  7. “The Word is DONE to us”.

    That is SO the focus we need, my friend…
    May it be so as we approach Easter…
    God is IN CHRIST, and it is there alone,
    that reconciliation, redemption,
    all that truly pertains to life and godliness
    truly is achieved, established, and finally, brought to fruition.

    Sola Christos.

  8. I love Pastor Lassman and have watched most of his videos. They actually helped me in my decision to come back to the Lutheran Church after my tenure as a Baptist. He really helped me get a handle on doctrine. Another great resource I used is Concordia Seminary St. Louis. They have great classes posted on iTunes that I have downloaded.

  9. “The Word is DONE to us”.

    That was an eye opening concept for us coming into the Lutheran faith and worship. In baptist and reformed worship this is not really done, the hearer is not really brought INTO the Word and God is not really acting, even in the more or less moralistic sermons. Even the later is not “done” to you nor is it “God working” but more or less like any moral lesson (aesop’s fables, Oprah, etc…) a bunch of “yea we/I need to better at that” at the end of the sermon.

    I think it is connected to any given churches view on the sacraments, especially the Lord’s Supper. E.g. in baptist worship the so called “Lord’s Supper” is pure Zwinglian, which means pure symbol and thus goes the preaching. The preacher is not really God speaking to you but rather more or less symbolic. Consistent with this the Word is not actually “done to you” but a symbol laid before you to act upon. There’s no absolution which means there’s no real Gospel. At best there is a distant “news” message that might even be more or less “pure” (although this is very rare in baptist churches today) as to its content of Good News, but its still just content and “news”, it’s a news that’s “over there” if you can some how get over there to “get it” for yourself. The office of the keys is completely absent and with it of course any real authority as to the Word.

    Reformed worship makes it almost a little more possible. It parallels Calvin on the Supper, in which Calvin rejected pure symbolism (at least at first glance) and thus rejected Zwingli. It’s a sign but a sign that has something IF faith can jump up and grab it. The the Gospel is still a content only driven message and not done to you, its just a more credible content offer than in Baptist worship. Thus, you will find a form of general so called “absolution” in Reformed worship. But it will never be a “Christ forgives you…” as in Lutheranism with that authority and reality behind it. It’s always a “if/then” absolution, “if you will believe”, they call for the work of faith, then you may be absolved.

    But the first time absolution hit me upon visiting a Lutheran church it was the most wonderful thing I’d ever heard. To know it was not a pastor but God Himself forgiving me, not because “I’ve earned it” by confessing, repenting or believing but so I would believe it. For the first time in my life the verse about “washing with the Word” actually meant something, my conscience was actually washed.

    People miss this about closed communion but one of the reasons Lutherans require catechesis and confession of the orthodox Lutheran doctrine before the Supper is not to be stoggy, but rather if one goes up there and receives it and does not believe (trust) it is in fact the very body and blood of Christ actually given to them FOR THE FORGIVENESS of THEIR SINS is to in fact be turning away Christ FOR REAL not in symbol. It is Christ saying “I forgive you” and it would be wrong to allow them to basically say, “No thanks I don’t believe you”. It also protects this doctrine among those that do confess and believe it.


  10. “Calvin on the Supper….rejected pure symbolism (at least at first glance) and thus rejected Zwingli. It’s a sign but a sign that has something IF faith can jump up and grab it. The the Gospel is still a content only driven message and not done to you”…

    That used to trouble a great deal in my Reformed days. If I was dead in the manner total depravity defines, what was ‘in me’ to respond to God? Good Reformed teachers would speak about the Word as a means of grace in the same fashion that the good early church fathers and Luther spoke of the sacraments, but others clearly had swallowed Augustine’s notion (as I think Calvin did) that in the fall, we didn’t loose everything – some part of our true selves remained, making for a measure of dualism in practical doctrine when it came to such issues as ‘our’ response, cascading, I began to realize, into what exactly is truly ‘redeemable’ about us. Calvin’s redemptive theology most certainly suffers as a result.

  11. Howard,

    Bingo. But ultimately all Calvinist, even the more “Luther leaning ones”, eventually call upon the work of faith. Some “sound” more Lutheran but ultimately the doctrine wins the day and your faith is called upon. That’s why the critical “what is put in your mouth” and “what is it the unbeliever eats/drinks” is such a distinguishing question. Ultimately they cannot help, aid nor answer the suffering soul under the worse trial/anfechtungen of “but do I believe”. Because their normal patent answer of, “…if you believe all this then you are elect…” is the very thing in question.


  12. Larry wrote:
    “all Calvinist(s), even the more “Luther leaning ones”, eventually call upon the work of faith”

    I recognize the problem – I could never work out how some Reformed friends ‘got it’ (the means of grace) when it came to the Word, but proceeded to tie themselves in knots when it comes to the sacraments. It has to be because of swallowing the manner of dualism Augustine and others – Calvin included – incorporated into their theological frameworks.

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