Open Communion is a matter of “biblical and Christian obedience”

October 22, 2010

So says New Testament scholar and Anglican clergyman N.T. Wright in his book For All God’s Worth. Open Communion is what Methodists, Anglicans, and some other denominations practice when they invite all Christians, regardless of denominational or confessional stripe, to come to the Lord’s Table for Holy Communion. He writes:

The differences between us, as twentieth-century Christians, all too often reflect cultural, philosophical and tribal divides, rather than anything that should keep us apart from full and glad eucharistic fellowship. I believe the church should recognize, as a matter of biblical and Christian obedience, that it is time to put the horse back before the cart, and that we are far, far more likely to reach doctrinal agreement between our different churches if we do so within the context of that common meal which belongs equally to us all because it is the meal of the Lord whom we all worship. Intercommunion, in other words, is not something we should regard as the prize to be gained at the end of the ecumenical road; it is the very paving of the road itself. If we wonder why we haven’t been travelling very fast down the road of late, maybe it’s because, without the proper paving, we’ve got stuck in the mud.

N.T. Wright, For All God’s Worth (Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1997), 109-10.

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