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Convert Issues / Re: Bowing Before Icons
« Last post by LBK on Today at 12:56:07 AM »

Exodus 20:4

Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven image, or any likeness [of any thing] that [is] in heaven above, or that [is] in the earth beneath, or that [is] in the water under the earth

I don't agree with this argument, but if you take the first part of the commandment literally it prohibits any likeness.

And yet God commanded the making of all sorts of images for the adornment of the Temple.  :)
Orthodox-Protestant Discussion / Re: formerly orthodox?
« Last post by Velsigne on Today at 12:55:22 AM »
here's a website on the marriage penalties attached to disability programs:

I understand you situation and it's sorrowful.

It raises a question, I've never considered amid the ballyhoo about marriage equality, can a Bishop in the US allow a sacremental marriage while not creating a legal one?

Anyone know if this is a possibility without consequence anywhere in the US?

Thank you.

I believe all 50 states have laws that marriages must be recorded by the County clerk.  If you officiate a marriage without the license, you are in violation of state law.

Even during the Soviet persecutions, this requirement was upheld by the Russian Orthodox Church, since the Soviets had a similar law.

Hi Father,

So does this mean that Fr. Patrick Reardon is engaged in civil disobedience by not signing civil marriage licenses? 

Chicago Tribune -- Orthodox Priest Refuses Marriage Licenses

Not if he follows the 'usual practice' in most formerly Communist countries of having the couple go obtain a civil marriage first.  BTW, that was also the reason for the 'bedrothal' at the beginning of the service, when the marriage was recorded by the Roman Census.

Oh, ok, thanks for explaining the process.
Hi, Bob.  I'll Google around and see what I can find out about the Open Bible Standard Church.  As indicated, I am skeptical of anything that has its roots in Azusa Street, but I certainly appreciate your experience.  My main experience with Pentecostal churches has come through COGIC and related unaffiliated (read: local storefront) churches.  I haven't seen things within the Pentecostal churches that I have taken to be the authentic work of the Holy Spirit, but I have seen miracles within the Orthodox Church, including manifestations of the authentic gifts.  What I have seen in Pentecostalism have been things that - as I have indicated - have made me feel really creeped out and uncomfortable.  Thanks for being willing to dialogue and learn from one another.  Please pray for me.  :)
Certainly, pray for me as well, my brother. I will respond more to this at some point in the not distant future but for now it's late and I'm in the middle of a 14 day stretch of work with no days off and right now my brain is not wanting to continue to cooperate with me. Good night.
We definitely don't want to do some intellectual property rights thing. When we say corporate worship we don't mean that kind of corporate.
yes, we do.
We wrote the Bible to ourselves, compiled it, transmitted it and canonized it. When it says "Church," that's us.
Step 1: Post an attack against Eastern Orthodoxy with no intention of actually having a productive dialogue

Step 2: Refuse to acknowledge any good rebuttals to your attack, claiming they are outside the scope of the conversation

Outcome?: Guaranteed victory!!

It's a rather pathetic form of argumentation, I must admit. I could also delude myself into thinking I'm winning an argument by trying to control what can and cannot be spoken. The challenge of course, would be in convincing others of the same when it is so plain what is happening.
There is no argument.

What God had joined, may no MAN put asunder. end of story.

There is no 2nd or 3rd try.

The RCC does not grant mulligans.

It becomes very obvious to us Orthodox that if you can grant annulments that 2nd or 3rd marriages can become a reality....  Declaring that it wasn't a sacramental marriage has become very easy to come by lately.

An Annulment is merely the name for the legalistic contortions and gymnastics required to have a divorce but to not actually call it one.

"A rose by any other name....."
Convert Issues / Re: Bowing Before Icons
« Last post by Sam G on Today at 12:49:22 AM »
I know. This topic has been done to death. Forgive me.

I'm getting ready to be chrismated in a month, and I'm still having trouble justifying bowing before icons in light of the second commandment—especially to my Protestant family.

Are you sure you should be getting Chrismated then? This isn't just a pet issue, your basically taking issue with the authority of the Ecumenical Councils here.

I wasn't aware that being an expert in apologetics was a requirement for Church membership. ;)
As I inarticulately tried to state from the beginning, I'm not taking issue with it, I'm having trouble with a rational justification that will hold water with others.

It's not. You wrote that you had a hard time justifying the veneration of icons. I took that to mean you're at odds with the practice. My mistake.

The second commandment states that the Israel (and, by extension, the Church?) is not to make images of things (clearly for use as idols, given the rest of the passage), and specifically that they are not to bow down to them—exactly what we do! How do I answer a Protestant family member who says, "You're bowing down to an image!"? Well. . . Yes. Yes, I am.

If your family has ever made an image of anything living, they've essentially violated the second commandment.

Again, I was inartful in writing my original post. It's clear to me (and easily explained) that the commandment does not prohibit any and all images.

Exodus 20:4
Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven image, or any likeness [of any thing] that [is] in heaven above, or that [is] in the earth beneath, or that [is] in the water under the earth

I don't agree with this argument, but if you take the first part of the commandment literally it prohibits any likeness.
My first thought was remembering the song below from which I take the idea that some Charismatic leaders would certainly agree with the assessment that their worship had become centered on man rather than God. Interestingly in the story behind this song one of the things that was done to shake up the church the where the author attended was to loose all the instruments and the sound system and simply sing. A very Orthodox way to do it, which sadly didn't last.

“The Heart of Worship”
written by Matt Redman

When the music fades
 and all is stripped away
 and I simply come.
 Longing just to bring
 something that’s of worth
 that will bless Your heart.

King of endless worth,
 no one could express
 how much you deserve.
 Though I’m weak and poor,
 all I have is Yours,
 every single breath!

I’ll bring You more than a song,
 for a song in itself
 is not what You have required.
 You search much deeper within,
 through the way things appear,
 You’re looking into my heart.

I’m coming back to the heart of worship
 and it’s all about You, it’s all about You, Jesus.
 I’m sorry, Lord, for the thing I’ve made it
 when it’s all about You, it’s all about You, Jesus.

Having said this I believe its endemic in all Protestant worship where the sermon has replaced the Eucharist as the climax of the service. As a minister for many years, and member of the worship team for probably as long, I can say such was never the point. The desire was to worship God, but, when you take away the alter and replace it with  a podium or a music stand, when the pastor and the "band" face the congregation on a "stage" the nonverbal message may be louder than the verbal one.

The theological outcome of this in a Pentecostal/Charismatic service may well be the idea that it wasn't a good service unless someone felt moved. A sentiment often express in Charismatic circles. I know one convert to Orthodoxy from Pentecostalism for whom one of the breakthrough moments was learning that the liturgy was the "work" of the people that it was okay to sometimes struggle with it, to not have to feel special every time. Not to mention the idea in some Pentecostal churches that your not "saved" if your not speaking in tongues.
From my limited experience in dialoging (if you could call it that) with Protestants, the best way I've found to explain my beliefs is by explaining the history of the early Church. St. Clement of Rome and St. Ignatius of Antioch are your best friends when it comes to this.

Either that, or you could always ask them to prove from scripture that scripture is the ultimate authority of the church.

I used to have a list of passages from the New Testament that I could use to ask Protestants hard questions about the structure of the Church, but alas, I've misplaced or deleted it.
Other Topics / Re: Random Postings
« Last post by Sam G on Today at 12:24:34 AM »
Other Topics / Re: Random Postings
« Last post by seekeroftruth777 on Today at 12:23:37 AM »
Aye, and as I mentioned in the MITB thread, there may be more tapes coming. I remember reading on the Meltzer/Alvarez site that the WWE and others knew of racist comments by Hogan for years now; I guess this is an especially bad time for that kind of news about you coming to the attentionn of the tabloids/TMZs though.

Anyway, my childhood is in tatters. Why Hulk, why? Did I not say enough prayers? Did I not eat enough vitamins? Did I not stay true to myself? Wasn't I a real American, fighting for the rights of every man, fighting for what's right? 8)

whatcha gonna do when racism runs wild all over you brother! sorry I couldn't help it now I know what he meant calling everyone brother and what his song I'm a real american meant  :D
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