F. L. Patton and R. S. Candlish on admission to communion

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Reformed Covenanter

Puritanboard Commissioner
I would differ a bit with the first quote, as I see no reason why communicants should not give their assent to something like the WCF, but I agree with the rest of these sentiments:

The Lord's table is spread for the Lord's people. None but Christians should come to it, and none who are Christ's should be kept from it. Hence, in admitting persons to sealing ordinances, it is not right to require them to subscribe to an elaborate creed, or to exact from them more than a credible profession of faith. Men cannot read the heart, and Christ does not recognize a vicarious conscience.

Francis L. Patton, A Summary of Christian Doctrine (Philadelphia: The Westminster Press, 1901), p. 103.

In a footnote, Patton also cites the Free Church of Scotland’s Robert S. Candlish:

The principle (of communion), as it is notorious that the Presbyterian Church has always held it, does not constitute the pastor, elders or congregation judges of the actual conversion of the applicant, but, on the contrary, lays much responsibility on the applicant himself. The minister and kirk-session must be satisfied as to his competent knowledge, credible profession and consistent walk. They must determine negatively that there is no reason for pronouncing him not to be a Christian, but they do not undertake the responsibility of positively judging of his conversion.

Quoted in Francis L. Patton, A Summary of Christian Doctrine (Philadelphia: The Westminster Press, 1901), p. 103n.
 
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