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Author Topic: Orthodoxy and Non-denominationalism  (Read 12146 times) Average Rating: 0
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ozgeorge
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« on: October 06, 2007, 09:22:25 AM »

Good for you. Roll Eyes
We're Christians here though, so
1) We hold what the Apostles taught us
2) We do not accept Aramaic Primacy
3) We strive for theosis (we don;t say we are theosed)
4) We celebrate the Feasts of the Christian Church
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« Reply #1 on: October 06, 2007, 09:48:20 AM »

Complete contradiction in terms. You cannot "live by the Bible" and not be "within the Church", since the Epistles are addressed to the Church. Therefore, you cannot even be Christian. There is no such thing as a Christian outside of the Church.

I never said that I wasn't a member of the Church (as in the Body Of Christ). If I am born-again through Jesus Christ and I am committed to Him, than I am a member of the Church. What I'm saying is that I'm not a member of the Orthodox Church. The Church is the Body Of Christ which consists of everyone that is a born-again Christian who puts their faith in Jesus. I'm not talking about the Church as in the Orthodox Church, which is a denomination of Christianity. 
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« Reply #2 on: October 06, 2007, 09:56:18 AM »

If I am born-again through Jesus Christ and I am committed to Him, than I am a member of the Church.
Hogwash. The second birth is Baptism, through which we die with Christ and rise with Him to enter the Church.
I'm not talking about the Church as in the Orthodox Church, which is a denomination of Christianity. 
Hogwash. How can the Orthodox Church be a denomination if it existed since AD 33 and is therefore pre-denominational?

The Church of the Bible shares One Cup and One Bread.  There is One Lord, One Faith One Baptism. There is only One Church, and it's visible boundaries are the Baptised who share Holy Communion with one another.
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« Reply #3 on: October 06, 2007, 10:47:35 AM »

Just to be sure . . . you aren't saying Christians outside your church are not Christians, are you?

I guess what OzGeorge is saying is that there is no such thig as "your" Church and "my" Church - there is only one Church, visible, tangible, hierarchical, with one Bread and one Cup. Smiley
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« Reply #4 on: October 06, 2007, 12:45:53 PM »

Hogwash. The second birth is Baptism, through which we die with Christ and rise with Him to enter the Church. Hogwash. How can the Orthodox Church be a denomination if it existed since AD 33 and is therefore pre-denominational?
I have been baptized, by the Holy Spirit and through immersion in water.
You believe that the Orthodox Church originated from the Apostles in A.D. 33, but I don't necessarily think so. I don't know if you have any real proof to that, and if you don't, then it's simply a matter of opinion. I have done a little research of it and I don't have any proof that the Orthodox Church really did originate from the Apostles. But, if it did, that doesn't necessarily mean that the Orthodox Church is the "true church." It seems obvious to me that there are some false doctrines within the Orthodox church. I believe that you can be a member of the Orthodox Church and be a Christian, though I wouldn't recommend it to anyone. But, there are definitely some doctrines within the Orthodox Church that are not Biblical. That's why I believe that there is no particular Christian sect or denomination that is perfect, as far as I know. 

Acts 20:29-30: "For I know this, that after my departure savage wolves will come in among you, not sparing the flock. Also from among yourselves men will rise up, speaking perverse things, to draw away the disciples after themselves." (NKJV)

Quote
The Church of the Bible shares One Cup and One Bread.  There is One Lord, One Faith One Baptism. There is only One Church, and it's visible boundaries are the Baptised who share Holy Communion with one another.
That's exactly what I'm saying. There is only one Church and I am a member of the Church.

Just to be sure . . . you aren't saying Christians outside your church are not Christians, are you?
No, I'm not saying that one has to attend the particular church building that I attend in order to be Christian. A true Christian is one that is reborn through Christ and puts their faith in Him. That is what gets you saved and that is what I believe. There are many different Christian sects and denominations. I don't think any of them are perfect. The only thing that is perfect is Jesus and His Word.

You my friend, are a Protestant who believes that faith which you have been taught.
Though you might think so because I do not belong to the Orthodox Church or Roman Catholic Church, I am not Protestant. I am also not a Seventh Day Adventist. I do not adhere to a particular Christian sect or denomination's beliefs. I strive to follow the Bible. I am non-denominational Christian. I simply call myself Christian, a Child Of God and member of the Body Of Christ.

Now (and I realise this may cause some debate even on these forums), I affirm that history strongly suggest that Jesus Christ our Lord and King was indeed born on Christmas Day (ie the 25th of December- according to the Julian calendar). I know this may astonish you and had somebody told me the same not too many years ago I would have marvelled at him; yet I would have been bound for the Truth's sake to seek out why he would say such a thing.
The Bible does not say the date that Jesus was born, so I don't know 100% whether it was on december 25th or any other day. But, since I've been saved, I have come across much information on the topic and have come to the belief that it's not on december 25th. I've have seen much information from different sources that has convinced me that he was not born on december 25th. However, the date is not important because it's not in the Bible, so it's really more a matter of opinion. The important thing is that He was born.

yes halloween is evil, we don't believe that MS Encarta Encyclopedia is infallible so quoting from it won't win you any particular support around here. Just look up the history of man and read about evolution and you may not think its version of history is so reliable either.
Of course, you don't have to believe MS Encarta Encyclopedia if you don't want to. I don't go and believe everything I read or hear about (except the Bible). One of the reasons why I mentioned that there are many different sources to finding out the history of halloween is so that you will be encouraged to find out for yourself about it. The MS Encarta Encyclopedia is simply one source. I could have easily quoted from another.

Aint this thread supposed to be about Spooks and sweets and whether we should suffer suckers who solicit our sweet stuffs on Samhain sourly?
I can understand the diversion from our prostestant friend, but still.  Lets get back to candy and costumes, m' cay?  Smiley
I understand. This thread is supposed to be about halloween. That's what I originally wrote about and it ended up turning into a different topic. Btw, I'm not Protestant.

 
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« Reply #5 on: October 06, 2007, 12:53:59 PM »

+ Irini nem ehmot,

I love the irony found in the words, 'non-denominational Christian'.  Wouldn't classifying yourself as non-denominational be a denomination in and of itself?
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« Reply #6 on: October 06, 2007, 01:08:18 PM »

+ Irini nem ehmot,

I love the irony found in the words, 'non-denominational Christian'.  Wouldn't classifying yourself as non-denominational be a denomination in and of itself?

Only in the same way that, for example, atheists don't believe in God, but they have chosen to believe a god that they have created in their own minds to suit themselves. Their "god" is that there is no God and they live their life according to that belief. Many of them believe in the "big bang theory" and the "theory of evolution." And in that way you could look at them as following their own "religion" or "denomination."
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« Reply #7 on: October 06, 2007, 01:51:08 PM »

I have been baptized, by the Holy Spirit and through immersion in water.
You believe that the Orthodox Church originated from the Apostles in A.D. 33, but I don't necessarily think so. I don't know if you have any real proof to that, and if you don't, then it's simply a matter of opinion. I have done a little research of it and I don't have any proof that the Orthodox Church really did originate from the Apostles. But, if it did, that doesn't necessarily mean that the Orthodox Church is the "true church." It seems obvious to me that there are some false doctrines within the Orthodox church. I believe that you can be a member of the Orthodox Church and be a Christian, though I wouldn't recommend it to anyone. But, there are definitely some doctrines within the Orthodox Church that are not Biblical. That's why I believe that there is no particular Christian sect or denomination that is perfect, as far as I know.

You do realize, of course, that that the Orthodox Church wrote that Bible, right?  When the Church compiled the canon of scripture, she ensured that the books selected were in accord with the teachings of the Apostles.  The question for the Church isn't "is it Biblical?" but rather "is it Apostolic?" because the question she asked when compiling scripture was "is it Apostolic?"  The Bible didn't produce the Church; the Church produced the Bible. 
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« Reply #8 on: October 06, 2007, 01:53:50 PM »

You do realize, of course, that that the Orthodox Church wrote that Bible, right?  When the Church compiled the canon of scripture, she ensured that the books selected were in accord with the teachings of the Apostles.  The question for the Church isn't "is it Biblical?" but rather "is it Apostolic?" because the question she asked when compiling scripture was "is it Apostolic?"  The Bible didn't produce the Church; the Church produced the Bible. 

No. Zondervan Publishing House did!  Cheesy
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« Reply #9 on: October 06, 2007, 01:57:34 PM »

yes halloween is evil, grace and peace be with you dear searcher. Whether you call yourself a Protestant or not does not change what you are but if it will make you happy then I will not call you one. Coming from a Seventh Day Baptist background I am well aware who the SDAs received their teachings regarding the Sabbath from also Wink
It is good that you call yourself a Christian but unless you are able to connect your baptism with the Apostles then I am afraid that you actually have no right to call yourself a Christian any more than a Mormon or a JW does. Do you consider these to be Christians also?

Regarding the Lord's birthday, practically every iota of information which floats about Protestant circles regarding this issues stems from Hislop's work. If you haven't read Hislops work then you have probably just read different people quoting him anyway. For a start, do you know that there are shepherd in that part of the world who keep their sheep in the field all year round? Are you aware of how many ancient records state that Christ was born on the 25th of one month or another? Some mistakenly transfered the date to their own local calendars and thus came up with what would appear to us to be random dates but even before the census records were made available to Christians (at which time Christ's birth date was confirmed) it was known by some here and there who had received The Faith when our Lord Jesus was born - the 25th of December. The Biblical record also (when examined correctly and not with misunderstanding as those who date the Lord's birth to about the Feast of Tabernacles or other such dates do so) attests that the Lord ought to have been born about this time. Agreed though that the Holy Bible does not state the exact date nor is it a matter neccessary for salvation. Hence my noting that even many here may disagree if they haven't thoroughly read history on this topic. {On a side note, I'm hoping to create a page about this hopefully around November once I have some free time. I'll let you know once it's launched God-willing.}

You are right that you can quote others and please don't think I was objecting to what the MS Encarta was saying about this topic. I was simply letting you know that many may not regard it for this reason. Make sense?

Regarding baptism again, where you baptised by triple immersion? I believe the word "βαπτιζοντες" (baptizing in St. Matthew 28:19) is plural. (Somebody with greater Greek knowledge confirm this please?) Did you also receive the Holy Spirit through the laying on of hands (which is the mystery of chrismation in the Orthodox Church)?

From the perspective of The Church which Jesus builds (that is the one holy, catholic and Apostolic Church), The Church is the Ark of Salvation. Just as none survived the great flood without the ark so too can none be saved without The Church. While being shipwreaked St. Paul noted a similar thing to those with him, "Except these abide in the ship, ye cannot be saved."

You said, "I am a member of the Church." In that case, St. Ignatius (the disciple of St. John the Beloved of the Lord) has these words for you, "Wherefore it is fitting that ye should run together in accordance with the will of your bishop" (Epistle of St. Ignatius to the Ephesians, ch. IV). Again, "It is fitting, then, not only to be called Christians, but to be so in reality: as some indeed give one the title of bishop, but do all things without him. Now such persons seem to me to be not possessed of a good conscience... be ye united with your bishop" (Epistle of St. Ignatius to the Magnesians, ch. IV-VI). And again, "Let no man do anything connected with the Church without the bishop" (Epistle of St. Ignatius to the Smyrnæans, ch. VIII).
So then my friend, if you are a true member of the Christian Church, who is your bishop? Mine is His Grace Anba Daniel, Coptic Orthodox Diocesan Bishop of Sydney, New South Wales, Queensland, the Northern Teritory, Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia, the Kingdom of Thailand, Japan, China and affiliated regions, who is in full cannonical communion with His Holiness Pope Shenouda III, Patriarch and Lord Archbishop of the Great City of Alexandria and the See of St. Mark being the 117th Successor of St. Mark the Apostle. (If you would like the list I can send it to you upon request.) The Faith we received from St. Mark is the Faith we keep today and forever unchanged.

My friend, though you may not now believe me, I was once like you are now and I know that it's not easy to find the original Church against which the gates of hell/hades will never prevail in such an unexpected place, but by the grace of God and for the love of His Son please, consider what it is you are now doing. For if we are all mad fools you lose nothing, but if the words I speak be truth then you stand at what may well just be the greatest fork in the road of your spiritual journey until now.
Have you read much of the writings of the disciples of the Apostles? Those of St. Clement or of St. Polycarp's martyrdom or have you read any of St. Justin Martyr's writings?

Look forward to hearing from you again but perhaps starting another thread under "Faith Issues" or "Convert Issues" would be more appropriate than continuing in here. Otherwise, my offer stands for discussions outside of this site if you would prefer. Also, have you seen my personal message to you yet? If not, please click on "My Messages" near the top of the screen to find it. Thank you.

Whatever you decide, by the mercy of Christ may you see the Light of the World in that Day.

Please keep sinners like me in your prayers. Thank you.

(Note: I wrote the above before the threads were split. Does anyone else seen the name of the thread as something rather strange with lots of "\\\\"? Is this an error sorry?)
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« Reply #10 on: October 06, 2007, 01:59:52 PM »

No, God wrote the Bible, and then once he was finished with it by the fourth century, he presented it to the Christians to use as the sole foundation of apostolic truth. Then he gave the Holy Spirit a much-deserved thousand-year vacation until, impatient that those pesky Catholics and Orthodox didn't get the hint, gave Sola Scriptura to Martin Luther.
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« Reply #11 on: October 06, 2007, 02:06:29 PM »

The Bible didn't produce the Church; the Church produced the Bible. 

Exactly Cool People without The Church who believe the Holy Bible often don't realise that they are already accepting the Holy Tradition of The Church by doing so.

lubeltri, with all due respect, your mockery is unlikely to assist the salvation of this seeking soul so may I please kindly ask you to keep your chuckles to yourself at least for the moment. We all see these points but we must put the salvation of a soul above our own amusement.
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To clarify, God inspired men within The Church to write the Holy Bible.
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« Reply #12 on: October 06, 2007, 02:07:49 PM »

who is your bishop? Mine is His Grace Anba Daniel, Coptic Orthodox Diocesan Bishop of Sydney, New South Wales, Queensland, the Northern Teritory, Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia, the Kingdom of Thailand, Japan, China and affiliated regions,

Wow, that's one big diocese!
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« Reply #13 on: October 06, 2007, 02:11:36 PM »

Wow, that's one big diocese!

Think I missed a few places but it's standard to say "and affiliated regions" due to small missions here and there anyway.

His Grace Anba Daniel is Bishop of the largest Coptic Diocese in the world in terms of area I believe.
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« Reply #14 on: October 06, 2007, 02:15:06 PM »

lubeltri, with all due respect, your mockery is unlikely to assist the salvation of this seeking soul so may I please kindly ask you to keep your chuckles to yourself at least for the moment. We all see these points but we must put the salvation of a soul above our own amusement.

I certainly was not mocking or getting my own amusement. I was making a point. It seems I am one of the few particpatingin this thread to consider our friend a Christian, so I'm certainly not dismissive towards him. But what I wrote is precisely the rope that pulled me to Catholicism. The implications of it do not make sense, as my little narrative (a boiled-down version of a the common Protestant/Evangelical perspective) illustrates. I suppose God could do things that way, but it does not seem like a reasonable God would do that. I could not get around it.  
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« Reply #15 on: October 06, 2007, 02:28:17 PM »

lubeltri, please forgive my misinterpretation of your words. I often fail to notice points like the one you were making unless somebody spells it out for me sorry. Now that you have explained your reasoning I understand and thank you for doing so Smiley Reasoning for the Orthodox would be the same. Do you believe our new friend who believes in Jesus Christ would understand what you meant though without explanation?

If I may request it please, would you mind PMing me your religious background and how you became a Catholic along with your views on the Orthodox Church?

Thank you and pray for me my friend.
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« Reply #16 on: October 06, 2007, 02:36:06 PM »

No, I'm not saying that one has to attend the particular church building that I attend in order to be Christian. A true Christian is one that is reborn through Christ and puts their faith in Him. That is what gets you saved and that is what I believe. There are many different Christian sects and denominations. I don't think any of them are perfect. The only thing that is perfect is Jesus and His Word.

Don't worry, my question wasn't directed at you.

Quote
Btw, I'm not Protestant.

I get you. The only communions properly called "Protestant" are those 16th-century denominations formed when groups broke with the Catholic Church in the 16th century. Most of the mainline versions of these denominations today have beefs more with the Catholics' traditional moral teachings than with Sacred Tradition, sacerdotalism or other Catholic distinctives (which many could care less about). Though there are conservative remnants and nonconformist descendants (mostly Reformed) who are still fighting the Reformation fight---they can be called Protestants. You are among the growing non-denom Christians, mostly Evangelical in character, am I right? Do you worship in a church building (like my father and brother and some friends of miine) or are you part of a house church (like my roommate and other friends?

Welcome to the board, BTW.
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« Reply #17 on: October 06, 2007, 02:43:49 PM »

lubeltri, please forgive my misinterpretation of your words. I often fail to notice points like the one you were making unless somebody spells it out for me sorry. Now that you have explained your reasoning I understand and thank you for doing so Smiley Reasoning for the Orthodox would be the same. Do you believe our new friend who believes in Jesus Christ would understand what you meant though without explanation?

If I may request it please, would you mind PMing me your religious background and how you became a Catholic along with your views on the Orthodox Church?

Thank you and pray for me my friend.

No problem, brother. Will do.
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« Reply #18 on: October 06, 2007, 03:45:31 PM »

Look forward to hearing from you again but perhaps starting another thread under "Faith Issues" or "Convert Issues" would be more appropriate than continuing in here.
Actually, after the go-round we had recently in the Faith Issues section, encouraging yes halloween is evil to start a thread there is very probably NOT a good idea.  Since we don't have a board for discussions between Orthodox and Protestants/Evangelicals/whatever-they-call-themselves-nowadays, I would probably have to kick his posts back out to Free-For-All to allow for less distracted discussions of subjects pertaining to the Orthodox Christian faith in the Faith board.
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« Reply #19 on: October 06, 2007, 03:47:22 PM »

Which is why I left this split here in FFA.
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« Reply #20 on: October 06, 2007, 03:48:44 PM »

Actually, after the go-round we had recently in the Faith Issues section, encouraging yes, halloween is evil to start a thread there is very probably NOT a good idea.  Since we don't have an Orthodox-Protestant board, I would probably have to kick his posts back out to Free-For-All to allow for less distracted discussions of subjects pertaining to the Orthodox Christian faith in the Faith board.

I suppose that raises the question of whether we should have an Orthodox-Protestant board.  Given that we have an EO-OO board and an Orthodox-Catholic board, it would seem to make sense to have one for Protestants as well, which would deal with the issue of where to keep those threads.
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« Reply #21 on: October 06, 2007, 03:51:17 PM »

I suppose that raises the question of whether we should have an Orthodox-Protestant board.  Given that we have an EO-OO board and an Orthodox-Catholic board, it would seem to make sense to have one for Protestants as well, which would deal with the issue of where to keep those threads.
Well, I s'pose we can petition Anastasios and FrChris to give us such a board.
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« Reply #22 on: October 06, 2007, 04:19:06 PM »

It would be nice to have more Protestants/Evangelicals here. I agree about a board for that. You DO have some converts from these groups.
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« Reply #23 on: October 06, 2007, 05:13:58 PM »

It seems I am one of the few particpatingin this thread to consider our friend a Christian,   

I do consider him a Christian, too; I believe that everyone who has been baptized in the name of the Trinity is a Christian. I just think that Protestants are "catechumens" still.
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« Reply #24 on: October 06, 2007, 05:14:14 PM »

Well, I s'pose we can petition Anastasios and FrChris to give us such a board.

The more I think about this, the better I like this idea.

Welcome some input here.
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« Reply #25 on: October 06, 2007, 05:15:22 PM »

I do consider him a Christian, too; I believe that everyone who has been baptized in the name of the Trinity is a Christian. I just think that Protestants are "catechumens" still.

Now THAT could be a post-of-the-month nomination...
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« Reply #26 on: October 06, 2007, 05:16:16 PM »

I do consider him a Christian, too; I believe that everyone who has been baptized in the name of the Trinity is a Christian. I just think that Protestants are "catechumens" still. 

Interesting position.... Better than many.
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« Reply #27 on: October 06, 2007, 06:43:31 PM »

yes halloween is evil, grace and peace be with you dear searcher. Whether you call yourself a Protestant or not does not change what you are but if it will make you happy then I will not call you one. Coming from a Seventh Day Baptist background I am well aware who the SDAs received their teachings regarding the Sabbath from also Wink
It is good that you call yourself a Christian but unless you are able to connect your baptism with the Apostles then I am afraid that you actually have no right to call yourself a Christian any more than a Mormon or a JW does. Do you consider these to be Christians also?
I have been baptized by the Holy Spirit when I became born-again. Then, I went to a church and received a baptism there in front of the congregation, including the church elders, in which hands were laid on me by the pastor and I was fully immersed in water. That is Apostolic.
I do believe that anyone that is born-again through Jesus and puts their faith in Him is saved and is therefore Christian. I don't think any Christian sect or denomination is perfect. Therefore, if someone that is a Mormon or JW is saved, then they are saved through and through even though many Mormon and JW teachings are messed up. Actually, I look upon Orthodox Christians in a similar light. Only God knows each and every heart, and if they are truly saved. Do you honestly think that Peter, Paul, John or any of the other Apostles would tell someone on the other side of the world that they are not Christian because the Apostles don't have a church set up where that person lives even though that person has truly repented of their sins, believed that God raised Jesus from the dead and puts their faith in Him? Of course not.

1 Peter 3:21-22: "There is also an antitype which now saves us—baptism (not the removal of the filth of the flesh, but the answer of a good conscience toward God), through the resurrection of Jesus Christ, who has gone into heaven and is at the right hand of God, angels and authorities and powers having been made subject to Him." (NKJV)

Romans 10:9: "that if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved." (NKJV)

Regarding the Lord's birthday, practically every iota of information which floats about Protestant circles regarding this issues stems from Hislop's work. If you haven't read Hislops work then you have probably just read different people quoting him anyway. For a start, do you know that there are shepherd in that part of the world who keep their sheep in the field all year round? Are you aware of how many ancient records state that Christ was born on the 25th of one month or another? Some mistakenly transfered the date to their own local calendars and thus came up with what would appear to us to be random dates but even before the census records were made available to Christians (at which time Christ's birth date was confirmed) it was known by some here and there who had received The Faith when our Lord Jesus was born - the 25th of December. The Biblical record also (when examined correctly and not with misunderstanding as those who date the Lord's birth to about the Feast of Tabernacles or other such dates do so) attests that the Lord ought to have been born about this time. Agreed though that the Holy Bible does not state the exact date nor is it a matter neccessary for salvation. Hence my noting that even many here may disagree if they haven't thoroughly read history on this topic. {On a side note, I'm hoping to create a page about this hopefully around November once I have some free time. I'll let you know once it's launched God-willing.}
That's nice information to know. However, I still disagree that it is december 25th. But, my sources do not only come from writing. I once saw a programme on television in which a man went out to discover the story of the magi coming to worship the Lord. He looked into the Bible. He looked into the calendar system. He and someone else performed some pretty advanced scientific type of stuff on computers in which he studied the magi's astrology and traced those astrological periods. All of this is a very brief explanation and I don't remember all of it. But, they came to the conclusion that Jesus was probably actually born in the spring in march. I very much don't believe that he was born on december 25th and I thought that it was common knowledge to many Christians. Also, the Roman Catholic Church instituted Christmas on december 25th probably because that was a major pagan "holiday" of the winter solstice and the Roman Catholic Church wanted people to join with them instead. So they decided to create their own man-made tradition and instituted the observance of christmas on that day. They did the same thing with substituting halloween with all saint's day/all soul's day and they've done that with other days as well.

You said, "I am a member of the Church." In that case, St. Ignatius (the disciple of St. John the Beloved of the Lord) has these words for you, "Wherefore it is fitting that ye should run together in accordance with the will of your bishop" (Epistle of St. Ignatius to the Ephesians, ch. IV). Again, "It is fitting, then, not only to be called Christians, but to be so in reality: as some indeed give one the title of bishop, but do all things without him. Now such persons seem to me to be not possessed of a good conscience... be ye united with your bishop" (Epistle of St. Ignatius to the Magnesians, ch. IV-VI). And again, "Let no man do anything connected with the Church without the bishop" (Epistle of St. Ignatius to the Smyrnæans, ch. VIII). So then my friend, if you are a true member of the Christian Church, who is your bishop?
My local church and fellowship of believers doesn't have a bishop, although I think it would be good to because the Bible speaks of the churches as having such. However, most churches don't seem to have bishops as far as I can tell. So, there isn't much I can do about it. My local church fellowship has a Pastor and deacons. I don't know the writings of Ignatius as it's not in the Bible. But, I found a quote from Epistle of Ignatius to the Ephesians 6:1, "Plainly therefore we ought to regard the bishop as the Lord Himself." So, if I were to go on that then I would say that the Lord Himself is my Bishop. But either way, I don't agree that one needs a church bishop to be saved/to be a member of the Church aka the Body Of Christ nor to have a good conscience. Jesus is my Light, Jesus is my Guide, Jesus is my Redeemer, Jesus is my Teacher, Jesus is my Beloved and Jesus is my God. It's all about Jesus. The LORD is the head of the Church, not the bishop. He's simply a leader within a church fellowship and a shepherd of the flock whilst Jesus is the Chief Shepherd of the flock. The most important thing is to be saved and if one is then they truly are a full-fledged member of the Church aka Body of Christ.
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« Reply #28 on: October 06, 2007, 06:57:43 PM »

That is Apostolic.
How do you know what Apostolic is?  Reading the Bible in total separation from the 1st-4th Century Church that compiled it and inserting your own 20th-21st Century ideas into your exegesis won't show you this.
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« Reply #29 on: October 06, 2007, 07:09:47 PM »

I have been baptized by the Holy Spirit when I became born-again. Then, I went to a church and received a baptism there in front of the congregation, including the church elders, in which hands were laid on me by the pastor and I was fully immersed in water. That is Apostolic.
I do believe that anyone that is born-again through Jesus and puts their faith in Him is saved and is therefore Christian. I don't think any Christian sect or denomination is perfect. Therefore, if someone that is a Mormon or JW is saved, then they are saved through and through even though many Mormon and JW teachings are messed up. Actually, I look upon Orthodox Christians in a similar light. Only God knows each and every heart, and if they are truly saved.

1 Peter 3:21-22: "There is also an antitype which now saves us—baptism (not the removal of the filth of the flesh, but the answer of a good conscience toward God), through the resurrection of Jesus Christ, who has gone into heaven and is at the right hand of God, angels and authorities and powers having been made subject to Him."

I don't know if you've been able to read between the lines of the responses you've been receiving yet or not, so I'll try to clarify a fundamental problem with this debate. You seem to think the point of the Christian life is salvation, but while even amongst the Orthodox there's a broad spectrum of belief about salvation (anywhere from Nyssa's Apokatastasis to a Cyprian's 'no salvation outside the Church' approach) most everyone would agree that salvation is not the ultimate goal of the Christian life, but rather growth in Christ and becomming more god-like is the goal, it is assumed that the Christian life leads one beyond mere salvation. As long as you hold some single act of salvation, that is to say getting into heaven, as the ultimate soteriological goal, you will be addressing this discussion from a perspective foreign to Orthodox and will be perceived as being overly simplistic about something as complex as the mind of God. And before you get into the I'm a persecuted martyr mindset, remember, this is just a message board, if you're not communicating and are failing on a rhetorical level, you're not giving your position justice.

Quote
That's nice information to know. However, I still disagree that it is december 25th. But, my sources do not only come from writing. I once saw a programme on television in which a man went out to discover the story of the magi coming to worship the Lord. He looked into the Bible. He looked into the calendar system. He and someone else performed some pretty advanced scientific type of stuff on computers in which he studied the magi's astrology and traced those astrological periods. All of this is a very brief explanation and I don't remember all of it. But, they came to the conclusion that Jesus was probably actually born in the spring in march. I very much don't believe that he was born on december 25th and I thought that it was common knowledge to many Christians. Also, the Roman Catholic Church instituted Christmas on december 25th probably because that was a major pagan "holiday" of the winter solstice and the Roman Catholic Church wanted people to join with them instead. So they decided to create their own man-made tradition and instituted the observance of christmas on that day. They did the same thing with substituting halloween with all saint's day/all soul's day and they've done that with other days as well.

This kind of an argument may fly on other boards you're familiar with, but aruging a point because 'a programme on televisions in which a man...[did]...some pretty advanced scientific type of stuff on computers' isn't going to cut it. Granted, people try to make these poor arguments from time to time but they should expect to be called out on it. Not even saying that I disagree with you on the dating, I think there's enough data available to rule one way or the other, and quite frankly believe the question to be irrelevant to the celebration of feasts. But poor arguments and bad rhetoric cannot be allowed to slide by unnoticed.

Quote
My local church and fellowship of believers doesn't have a bishop, although I think it would be good to because the Bible speaks of the churches as having such. However, most churches don't seem to have bishops as far as I can tell. So, there isn't much I can do about it. My local church fellowship has a Pastor and deacons. I don't know the writings of Ignatius as it's not in the Bible. But, I found a quote from Epistle of Ignatius to the Ephesians 6:1, "Plainly therefore we ought to regard the bishop as the Lord Himself." So, if I were to go on that then I would say that the Lord Himself is my Bishop. But either way, I don't agree that one needs a church bishop to be saved/to be a member of the Church aka the Body Of Christ nor to have a good conscience. Jesus is my Light, Jesus is my Guide, Jesus is my Redeemer, Jesus is my Teacher, Jesus is my Beloved and Jesus is my God. It's all about Jesus. The LORD is the head of the Church, not the bishop. He's simply a leader within a church fellowship and a shepherd of the flock whilst Jesus is the Chief Shepherd of the flock. The most important thing is to be saved and if one is then they truly are a full-fledged member of the Church aka Body of Christ.

'Regard the bishop as the Lord Himself,' NOT 'Regard the Lord Himself as the bishop.' Word order matters in English, in the original Greek it's less important but the inflection makes the meaning clear. Wink
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« Reply #30 on: October 06, 2007, 07:11:55 PM »

How do you know what Apostolic is?  Reading the Bible in total separation from the 1st-4th Century Church that compiled it and inserting your own 20th-21st Century ideas into your exegesis won't show you this.

What 20th-21st century ideas are you talking about? The writings included in the NT were written in the 1st Century AD. That is what I read and that is what I know. Therefore, I know what Apostlic is. The Apostles that spoke and recorded the words included in the Bible were from the 1 Century A.D. not the 2, 3 or 4th century A.D. I could easily say that you're reading the Bible and perhaps some other questionable documents with a 20th-21th Century mindset and therefore how could you ever understand it. I understand the Bible because of the Holy Spirit inside of me. Is not the Holy Spirit the one that guides us and helps us in our Christian walk? Is not Jesus our Great Teacher? "But you, do not be called ‘Rabbi’; for One is your Teacher, the Christ, and you are all brethren. Do not call anyone on earth your father; for One is your Father, He who is in heaven. And do not be called teachers; for One is your Teacher, the Christ." (Matthew 23:8-10 NKJV)

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« Reply #31 on: October 06, 2007, 07:24:52 PM »

What 20th-21st century ideas are you talking about? The writings included in the NT were written in the 1st Century AD. That is what I read and that is what I know. Therefore, I know what Apostlic is. The Apostles that spoke and recorded the words included in the Bible were from the 1 Century A.D. not the 2, 3 or 4th century A.D. I could easily say that you're reading the Bible and perhaps some other questionable documents with a 20th-21th Century mindset and therefore how could you ever understand it. I understand the Bible because of the Holy Spirit inside of me. Is not the Holy Spirit the one that guides us and helps us in our Christian walk? Is not Jesus our Great Teacher? "But you, do not be called ‘Rabbi’; for One is your Teacher, the Christ, and you are all brethren. Do not call anyone on earth your father; for One is your Father, He who is in heaven. And do not be called teachers; for One is your Teacher, the Christ." (Matthew 23:8-10 NKJV)

I believe the point was that nothing can be understood in a vacuum, many in the Orthodox Church make the same mistake when reading our Church Fathers, they read them like protestants read the Bible, as though it stands on its own. Of course, they don't, just as the Bible doesn't. When someone writes a document of any sort there are several complex contexts: cultural, political, social, ethical, religious, linguistic, economic, etc. If one does not understand these contexts (which were very different during the 1-4th centuries than they are today), they can't truly understand the essence of the writing, they end up interpreting it through their own experiences rather than through the experiences of the author. I believe that is what he means by inserting your own 20th-21st century ideas...to a degree we all do it, but understanding and admitting to this tendency (whether one embraces or attempt to avoid such influences) is a prerequisite to any legitimate exegesis and textual criticism.
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« Reply #32 on: October 06, 2007, 07:42:24 PM »

I don't know if you've been able to read between the lines of the responses you've been receiving yet or not, so I'll try to clarify a fundamental problem with this debate. You seem to think the point of the Christian life is salvation, but while even amongst the Orthodox there's a broad spectrum of belief about salvation (anywhere from Nyssa's Apokatastasis to a Cyprian's 'no salvation outside the Church' approach) most everyone would agree that salvation is not the ultimate goal of the Christian life, but rather growth in Christ and becomming more god-like is the goal, it is assumed that the Christian life leads one beyond mere salvation. As long as you hold some single act of salvation, that is to say getting into heaven, as the ultimate soteriological goal, you will be addressing this discussion from a perspective foreign to Orthodox and will be perceived as being overly simplistic about something as complex as the mind of God. And before you get into the I'm a persecuted martyr mindset, remember, this is just a message board, if you're not communicating and are failing on a rhetorical level, you're not giving your position justice.
I do believe that the most important thing is being put right with God and saving our souls from eternal damnation by being saved. I think that salvation is the most important thing. However, I definitely do not believe that being saved is the only part to a Christian life. Once saved, a Christian progresses to become more and more like Christ. God conforms us in the image of His Son. We work for God and produce fruit for Him. We shine the Light on others. We should be helping them to be saved as well.

This kind of an argument may fly on other boards you're familiar with, but aruging a point because 'a programme on televisions in which a man...[did]...some pretty advanced scientific type of stuff on computers' isn't going to cut it. Granted, people try to make these poor arguments from time to time but they should expect to be called out on it. Not even saying that I disagree with you on the dating, I think there's enough data available to rule one way or the other, and quite frankly believe the question to be irrelevant to the celebration of feasts. But poor arguments and bad rhetoric cannot be allowed to slide by unnoticed.
I know that example might sound unconvincing and pretty unprofessional to a certain degree, but I was simply trying to explain that I have many different sources on the whole december 25th issue. That particular reply wasn't my main focus in comparison to other replies I was doing.

'Regard the bishop as the Lord Himself,' NOT 'Regard the Lord Himself as the bishop.' Word order matters in English, in the original Greek it's less important but the inflection makes the meaning clear. Wink
Well, that points it out totally different to me.
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« Reply #33 on: October 06, 2007, 07:53:13 PM »

I believe the point was that nothing can be understood in a vacuum, many in the Orthodox Church make the same mistake when reading our Church Fathers, they read them like protestants read the Bible, as though it stands on its own. Of course, they don't, just as the Bible doesn't. When someone writes a document of any sort there are several complex contexts: cultural, political, social, ethical, religious, linguistic, economic, etc. If one does not understand these contexts (which were very different during the 1-4th centuries than they are today), they can't truly understand the essence of the writing, they end up interpreting it through their own experiences rather than through the experiences of the author. I believe that is what he means by inserting your own 20th-21st century ideas...to a degree we all do it, but understanding and admitting to this tendency (whether one embraces or attempt to avoid such influences) is a prerequisite to any legitimate exegesis and textual criticism.
The Bible interprets itself. The Bible contains the Word of God and the Word of God is Jesus who never changes. The Bible gives us everything that we need to know. It's our Guide in Life. The only time that a particular writing that is not included in the Bible can be considered correct is if it matches with what the Bible says and doesn't contradict it. Anything that contradicts the Word Of God cannot be truth whether it's a writing, a sermon or a prophesy or whatever it might be.

Malachi 3:6: "For I am the LORD, I do not change;" (NKJV)
Hebrews 13:8: "Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever." (NKJV)

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« Reply #34 on: October 06, 2007, 07:56:08 PM »

The Bible interprets itself.
That's not what the Bible says.
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« Reply #35 on: October 06, 2007, 08:08:18 PM »

That's not what the Bible says.
Please prove that to me because I believe it does. 
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« Reply #36 on: October 06, 2007, 08:09:24 PM »

Please prove that to me because I believe it does. 

Acts 8:30-31
"So Philip ran to him, and heard him reading the prophet Isaiah, and said, “Do you understand what you are reading?” And he said, “How can I, unless someone guides me?” And he asked Philip to come up and sit with him."
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« Reply #37 on: October 06, 2007, 08:14:52 PM »

2 Peter 1:20
"knowing this first, that no prophecy of Scripture is of any private interpretation"
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« Reply #38 on: October 06, 2007, 08:15:24 PM »

Acts 8:30-31
"So Philip ran to him, and heard him reading the prophet Isaiah, and said, “Do you understand what you are reading?” And he said, “How can I, unless someone guides me?” And he asked Philip to come up and sit with him."

I don't think that is proof that the Bible doesn't interpret itself because that person was brand new to the faith. He just converted.

2 Peter 1:20
"knowing this first, that no prophecy of Scripture is of any private interpretation"

That's funny because I was going to use that very same quote to support that the Bible does interpret itself and that we shouldn't come up with our own interpretations, but let the Bible speak for itself.
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« Reply #39 on: October 06, 2007, 08:19:21 PM »

2 Thessalonians 2:15
"Therefore, brethren, stand fast and hold the traditions which you were taught, whether by word or our epistle."

So, what is your source for the words of the Apostles not written in the Epistles so that you may hold fast to the traditions they taught as they instructed us to?
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« Reply #40 on: October 06, 2007, 08:26:48 PM »

I don't think that is proof that the Bible doesn't interpret itself because that person was brand new to the faith. He just converted.
I'm afraid that this is nothing more than your interpretation of the Scripture. "I don't think" means "I'm not certain", in other words, even this Scripture passage does not "interpret itself" for you.... Wink
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« Reply #41 on: October 06, 2007, 08:29:31 PM »

2 Thessalonians 2:15
"Therefore, brethren, stand fast and hold the traditions which you were taught, whether by word or our epistle."

That still doesn't prove anything because the Apostles taught from Scripture, the Gospel of Jesus and His teachings. This is what is included in the Bible. And nothing that they taught contradicted the Bible which is the Word Of God.

So, what is your source for the words of the Apostles not written in the Epistles so that you may hold fast to the traditions they taught as they instructed us to?

I don't know of any other correct epistles besides the ones already included in the Bible. Besides, why would another Apostle write anything that contradicts the teaching of a different Apostle if all of their teaching comes from the same source, Jesus, and they were all lead by the Holy Spirit to teach those things? Unless that Apostle turned against God.
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« Reply #42 on: October 06, 2007, 08:31:18 PM »

I'm afraid that this is nothing more than your interpretation of the Scripture. "I don't think" means "I'm not certain", in other words, even this Scripture passage does not "interpret itself" for you.... Wink

I don't think that is proof that the Bible doesn't interpret itself because that person was brand new to the faith. He just converted.

I KNOW that is not proof that the Bible doesn't interpret itself because that person was brand new to the faith. He just converted.
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« Reply #43 on: October 06, 2007, 08:31:42 PM »

I don't think that is proof that the Bible doesn't interpret itself because that person was brand new to the faith. He just converted.

I KNOW that is not proof that the Bible doesn't interpret itself because that person was brand new to the faith. He just converted.

Actually, now that I think about it, even though the Bible (which is part of the Logos Word Of God) does interpret itself in many instances in the writing, one does need the Holy Spirit and Rhema Word of God much of the time in order to fully understand and be given the correct interpretation when reading the Bible. There are many people in the world that read the Bible, but don't get it at all because they aren't guided by the Holy Spirit or Rhema Word of God or they have their hearts and minds closed to it. I totally forgot about that for a moment. But, this is still speaking of the Word Of God. I don't need a person to interpret it for me, all I really need is the Word Of God in its forms to interpret it for me. I do think that a person can help another to a certain extent, as I have been, if that person is anointed by the Holy Spirit, is more mature in faith and knows the Word because that person has progressed more in the Holy Spirit than a new comer for example. But, I don't think that's vital to understanding and interpreting the Bible if one is anointed by the Holy Spirit themselves, knows the Word and is willing to pray in order to understand the text.
« Last Edit: October 06, 2007, 09:03:17 PM by yes halloween is evil » Logged

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« Reply #44 on: October 06, 2007, 08:35:34 PM »

the Apostles taught from Scripture, the Gospel of Jesus and His teachings.
Errr....the Gospels didn't exist yet. Paul wrote his Epistles before the first Gospel was written.
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