.

The Historical Development of the PCA Book of Church Order

Chapter 28 : Discipline of Noncommuning Members

Paragraph 4 : Of Adult Non-communing Members

28-4. The Adult non-communing members, who receive with meekness and appreciation the oversight and instruction of the Church, are entitled to special attention. Their rights and privileges under the covenant should be frequently and fully explained, and they should be warned of the sin and danger of neglecting their covenant obligations.

[Historical Summary : The current PCA text dates to ____, and is essentially the same text as that of PCUS 1925.]

Background and Comparison :
1. PCA 1973, RoD, 2-4, Adopted text, as printed in the Minutes of General Assembly, p. 145
2. Continuing Presbyterian Church 1973, RoD, 2-4, Proposed text, p. 40
3. PCUS 1933, RoD, II-§171
4. PCUS 1925, RoD, II-§171

Adult non-communing members who receive with meekness and appreciation the oversight and instruction of the Church are entitled to special attention. Their rights and privileges under the covenant should be frequently and fully explained, and they should be warned of the sin and danger of neglecting their covenant obligations.

PCUS 1879, Rules of Discipline, II-4

Those adult non-communicating members who submit with meekness and gratitude to the government and instruction of the Church, are entitled to special attention. Their rights under the covenant should be frequently and fully explained and their duties enforced on their consciences; they should be warned of the sin and danger of neglecting their covenant obligations, and urged by the mercies of Christ to come up to their full discharge.


PCUS 1869 draft, Canons of Discipline, II-4 and II-5
IV. Those adult non-communicating members, who submit with meekness and gratitude to the government and instruction of the Church, are entitled to special attention. It is the duty of the Minister upon every occasion of the administration of the Lord’s Supper, or at least once every year, to preach a sermon to them, and in connexion with the Session to appoint a special meeting with them for prayer, exhortation and conference; on which occasions their rights under the covenant shall be fully explained to them, their duties shall be enforced on their consciences, and they shall be warned of the sin and danger of neglecting them, and urged by the mercies of Christ to come up to the full discharge of their covenant obligations.
V. It is the right of all such members to demand and to enjoy the protection of the Church. They have the common right to arraign before the Session any communicating member for personal offences, and when slandered, they have a right to ask, and it may be the duty of the Session to grant an investigation, in order to their exculpation.


PCUS 1867 draft, Canons of Discipline, II-5 and II-6
V. Those adult non-communicating members, who submit with meekness and gratitude to the government and instruction of the church, are entitled to special attention. It is the duty of the minister upon every occasion of the administration of the Lord’s Supper, or at least once every year, to preach a sermon to them, and in connexion with the session to appoint a special meeting with them for prayer, exhortation and conference; on which occasions their rights under the covenant shall be fully explained to them, their duties shall be enforced on their consciences, and they shall be warned of the sin and danger of neglecting them, and urged by the mercies of Christ to come up to the full discharge of their covenant obligations.
VI. It is the right of all such members to demand and to enjoy the protection of the church. They have the common right to arraign before the session any communicating member for personal offences, and when slandered, they have a right to ask, and it may be the duty of the session to grant an investigation, in order to their exculpation.

COMMENTARY :
F.P. Ramsay, Exposition of the Book of Church Order
(1898, p. 176), on II-4:
150.--IV. Those adult non-communicating members who submit with meekness and gratitude to the government and instruction of the Church, are entitled to special attention. Their rights under the covenant should be frequently and fully explained and their duties enforced on their consciences; they should be warned of the sin and danger of neglecting their covenant obligations, and urged by the mercies of Christ to come up to their full discharge.
(Cf. 30.) The exemption of non-communicating members from judicial prosecution does not exempt the Church from exercising watchful discipline over them in other forms of discipline ; and their privilege and obligation as church members should never be lost sight of.



©PCA Historical Center, 12330 Conway Road, St. Louis, MO, 2007. All Rights Reserved.

Chapter Index [links to Par. 1 of each chapter]:
FoG..
1
2
3.
4
5.
6
7
8
9
10
11
12
13
14
15
16
17
18
19
20
21
22
23
24
25
26
I. King & Head of Church
.§1.
§4
§5
RoD
27
28
29
30
31
32
33
34
35
36
37
38
39
40
41
42
43
44
45
46
II. Preliminary Principles
§1
§2
§3
§4
§5
§6
§7
§8
DfW
47
48
49
50
51
52
53
54
55
56
57
58
59
60
61
62
63
[FoG = Form of Government ; RoD = Rules of Discipline ; DfW = Directory for Worship]