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Author Topic: Bishop Hilarion on Liberal Christianity  (Read 12060 times) Average Rating: 0
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« Reply #45 on: February 21, 2008, 10:03:12 PM »

Of course they/we are to try to change them.

I disagree. The willingness of the individual to cooperate with the Holy Spirit is what does the changing. We are the messangers; and the Christian on a moral high-horse doesn't seem to be the ideal messenger, but the one who places a stumbling block before the non-believer.  And we may deliver to gospel message in many ways; verbally to those who wish to hear and silently by our loving attitudes to all people including (and perhaps, especially) to those who do not wish to hear; directly by the written word (theological books, etc) to those who wish to read and indirectly in the written word (Christian fantasy) to those who do not. The same goes for the media of cinematography.  

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"Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, teaching them all that I have commanded you...."

Certainly we are to make disciples of all nations, but what of those who don't wish to be disciples? Christ isn't speaking of a political broad-sweep or forcing those who don't wish to be disciples into living by Christian morality.

Getting back to Bishop Hilarion's remarks concerning Christian Liberals; I repeat; a liberal Christian's conduct with such people is to accept them and love them unconditional to the fact that they are living in lifestyles that Christianity does not condone; without trying to change them; just showing them Christ (and thus preaching the Gospel) in their attitudes.

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« Reply #46 on: February 21, 2008, 10:11:41 PM »

I disagree. The willingness of the individual to cooperate with the Holy Spirit is what does the changing. We are the messangers; and the Christian on a moral high-horse doesn't seem to be the ideal messenger, but the one who places a stumbling block before the non-believer.  And we may deliver to gospel message in many ways; verbally to those who wish to hear and silently by our loving attitudes to all people including (and perhaps, especially) to those who do not wish to hear; directly by the written word (theological books, etc) to those who wish to read and indirectly in the written word (Christian fantasy) to those who do not. The same goes for the media of cinematography.  

Certainly we are to make disciples of all nations, but what of those who don't wish to be disciples? Christ isn't speaking of a political broad-sweep or forcing those who don't wish to be disciples into living by Christian morality.

Getting back to Bishop Hilarion's remarks concerning Christian Liberals; I repeat; a liberal Christian's conduct with such people is to accept them and love them unconditional to the fact that they are living in lifestyles that Christianity does not condone; without trying to change them; just showing them Christ (and thus preaching the Gospel) in their attitudes.


Yes, just like the Gospel [of John 2]
13 The Passover of the Jews was at hand, and Jesus went up to Jerusalem. 14 In the temple he found those who were selling oxen and sheep and pigeons, and the money-changers at their business. 15 And making a whip of cords, he drove them all, with the sheep and oxen, out of the temple; and he poured out the coins of the money-changers and overturned their tables. 16 And he told those who sold the pigeons, "Take these things away; you shall not make my Father's house a house of trade." 17 His disciples remembered that it was written, "Zeal for thy house will consume me." 18 The Jews then said to him, "What sign have you to show us for doing this?" 19 Jesus answered them, "Destroy this temple, and in three days I will raise it up." 20 The Jews then said, "It has taken forty-six years to build this temple, and will you raise it up in three days?" 21 But he spoke of the temple of his body. 22 When therefore he was raised from the dead, his disciples remembered that he had said this; and they believed the scripture and the word which Jesus had spoken.

23 Now when he was in Jerusalem at the Passover feast, many believed in his name when they saw the signs which he did; 24 but Jesus did not trust himself to them, 25 because he knew all men and needed no one to bear witness of man; for he himself knew what was in man.
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« Reply #47 on: February 21, 2008, 10:30:32 PM »

I think there's a difference between loving people no matter what they're sin, and condoning the sin itself.  What Bishop Hilarion was saying was not that we shouldn't love them, but rather that we shouldn't be condoning the sins.  It's the classic "love the sinner, hate the sin."

Presbytera Maria,

My comments have never included condoning sin.  Smiley

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For example, say I, as an Orthodox Christian, have a neighbor/friend who is a lesbian in a long-term relationship.  I think he's saying, as Christians, we of course welcome them into our homes, show them love (absent of judgement), and if the subject comes up, yes, we tell them honestly what we believe-- we don't say "you're going to hell for what you're doing," or "the Church says you are wrong..."  What we say is, "we believe X..."-- we say the truth in love absent of judgement. 

I don't believe we say anything regarding their situation, unless they directly ask us. An unsolicited comment on someone else's personal business is over-stepping our authority. Do Christians feel the need to inform every overweight person they meet that they are guilty of the sin of gluttony?  Wink

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And we make it clear that they are, of COURSE, welcome into our Churches.  Just because the Church doesn't condone the lifestyle doesn't mean we don't love the sinner and welcome them.  The Church is a hospital for sinners, and their sin is no worse than any of ours.  Fornication is just as sinful when done heterosexually, and we should proclaim that JUST as loudly as we proclaim it as sinful within homosexuality.

Probably just as sinful as gluttony. Smiley

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What he's saying the liberal Christian camp does is welcome them into their churches with the understanding that their church allows, condones, blesses, and encourages their sins.

Then he has painted the liberal Christian with too broad a sweep.

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This is where the problem is.  Struggling with homosexuality is nothing to be ashamed of, I don't think.  I had a homosexual Orthodox friend who suffered constantly with his sexuality because it meant that he was alone, but thank God, he did so without being ashamed of the suffering.  He was ashamed for ALL of his sins, none more than any other.  If one is struggling for Christ, then that is nothing to be ashamed of.  The point is to struggle, to continue to seek perfection in Christ, no matter what your sin. 

Again, my question is concerned with our attitudes to those outside the Church. A struggling/sinning Christian within Orthodoxy is conselled/discipled by their spritual father. (Hopefully)

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The problem with the liberal Christian camp is that it encourages succumbing to the temptation, it encourages the person to live by their own will, rather than admit humility and live by the will of God. This is a problem.

Is this a problem within Orthodoxy?

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As far as political liberal Christianity... I have been rethinking this and praying about it a lot, during this election season.  Honestly, I've been thinking about it because of the discussion I had way back with GiC and Nektarios about the candidates.  They enlightened me a lot to the thinking behind being Orthodox but being politically liberal.  Of course I am pro-life, but the fact is that there is virtually no candidate out there who truly understands the sanctity of life, such that they apply it to ALL of the big three (abortion, death penalty, war).

I agree, though I have little knowledge of your elections. GIC and Nektarios seem very sensible lads. Smiley 

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Anyway... If I understand correctly from them (guys, feel free to correct me), it's not about your personal morals, it's about forcing others to live by them by LEGISLATING morals (legislating against abortion, legislating against gay marriage, etc.). To be honest, I haven't changed my mind about being pro-life, but I HAVE changed my mind about legislating against gay marriage.

God be praised!

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I think it's clear that, as Christians, we shouldn't force our morals on other people, we should only love them and try to minister to them without judgement.  And as long as the government is not able to force the Orthodox Church to perform a gay marriage, I have no problem with people of a homosexual persuasion doing whatever they want with their own lives.  Of course I don't condone the sin, but I can't force them to live by my morals.  I can only love them, pray for them (without judgement), and show them by my example what Christianity is about, and that Christ is WORTH the struggle.  And, God willing, if they ask for help, I will be thrilled and praise God, and direct them straight to my husband (who is a priest), as he is more able to minister to them in a confessional manner than I am (obviously).

You are preaching to the choir.  Grin

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Sorry that's so long, but I hope it's clear.  Forgive me if I have offended...

You haven't offended me, dear Presbytera. A: we seem to be in agreement, and B: I'm all for freedom of thought and speech and there's no way that I would be offended by your opinion if it opposed mine. You and I don't have to agree (though it's nice that we do). That is, in fact, the point of my posts. Smiley

 
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« Reply #48 on: February 21, 2008, 10:32:54 PM »

Yes, just like the Gospel [of John 2]
13 The Passover of the Jews was at hand, and Jesus went up to Jerusalem. 14 In the temple he found those who were selling oxen and sheep and pigeons, and the money-changers at their business. 15 And making a whip of cords, he drove them all, with the sheep and oxen, out of the temple; and he poured out the coins of the money-changers and overturned their tables. 16 And he told those who sold the pigeons, "Take these things away; you shall not make my Father's house a house of trade." 17 His disciples remembered that it was written, "Zeal for thy house will consume me." 18 The Jews then said to him, "What sign have you to show us for doing this?" 19 Jesus answered them, "Destroy this temple, and in three days I will raise it up." 20 The Jews then said, "It has taken forty-six years to build this temple, and will you raise it up in three days?" 21 But he spoke of the temple of his body. 22 When therefore he was raised from the dead, his disciples remembered that he had said this; and they believed the scripture and the word which Jesus had spoken.

23 Now when he was in Jerusalem at the Passover feast, many believed in his name when they saw the signs which he did; 24 but Jesus did not trust himself to them, 25 because he knew all men and needed no one to bear witness of man; for he himself knew what was in man.

<sigh>
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« Reply #49 on: February 21, 2008, 10:41:59 PM »

<sigh>

Yeah, there isn't much else you can say.  It's a lost cause  Roll Eyes   
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« Reply #50 on: February 23, 2008, 12:23:50 AM »

Yes, just like the Gospel [of John 2]
13 The Passover of the Jews was at hand, and Jesus went up to Jerusalem. 14 In the temple he found those who were selling oxen and sheep and pigeons, and the money-changers at their business. 15 And making a whip of cords, he drove them all, with the sheep and oxen, out of the temple; and he poured out the coins of the money-changers and overturned their tables. 16 And he told those who sold the pigeons, "Take these things away; you shall not make my Father's house a house of trade." 17 His disciples remembered that it was written, "Zeal for thy house will consume me." 18 The Jews then said to him, "What sign have you to show us for doing this?" 19 Jesus answered them, "Destroy this temple, and in three days I will raise it up." 20 The Jews then said, "It has taken forty-six years to build this temple, and will you raise it up in three days?" 21 But he spoke of the temple of his body. 22 When therefore he was raised from the dead, his disciples remembered that he had said this; and they believed the scripture and the word which Jesus had spoken.

23 Now when he was in Jerusalem at the Passover feast, many believed in his name when they saw the signs which he did; 24 but Jesus did not trust himself to them, 25 because he knew all men and needed no one to bear witness of man; for he himself knew what was in man.

What I think you're missing in the above, though, is this:  Jesus lived and preached in a society that was essentially a theocracy founded on the all-encompassing spiritual and civil laws revealed to Moses on Mount Sinai, laws that Jesus revealed Himself as the pre-incarnate and eternally begotten Son of God.  And, just as God chastised His people, the people of Israel, time and time again for their sins, so the Son of God, Jesus Christ, chastised His people in the Temple, the Temple whose rituals Christ Himself commanded.

We can't get away with this today, since we don't live in a theocracy.  As much as we in the USA may like to pay lip service to Judaeo-Christian ideals, we need to recognize that our society was NEVER intended to be a theocracy whose every law was revealed by God Himself.  The foundation of civil law in the U.S. is really Enlightenment philosophy for the most part, and what Christian ideals were incorporated into our society were filtered through the phenomena of the Renaissance, Reformation, and Enlightenment.  The ideals by which we govern ourselves were never revealed to us directly by God as was the Law of Moses, so we have no authority to chastise the people of our society as Christ did the people of His Mosaic Covenant.
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« Reply #51 on: February 23, 2008, 03:38:13 AM »

What I think you're missing in the above, though, is this:  Jesus lived and preached in a society that was essentially a theocracy founded on the all-encompassing spiritual and civil laws revealed to Moses on Mount Sinai, laws that Jesus revealed Himself as the pre-incarnate and eternally begotten Son of God.  And, just as God chastised His people, the people of Israel, time and time again for their sins, so the Son of God, Jesus Christ, chastised His people in the Temple, the Temple whose rituals Christ Himself commanded.

We can't get away with this today, since we don't live in a theocracy.  As much as we in the USA may like to pay lip service to Judaeo-Christian ideals, we need to recognize that our society was NEVER intended to be a theocracy whose every law was revealed by God Himself.  The foundation of civil law in the U.S. is really Enlightenment philosophy for the most part, and what Christian ideals were incorporated into our society were filtered through the phenomena of the Renaissance, Reformation, and Enlightenment.  The ideals by which we govern ourselves were never revealed to us directly by God as was the Law of Moses, so we have no authority to chastise the people of our society as Christ did the people of His Mosaic Covenant.

You're confusing the issue of "authority."

The argument was similarly made by the enlightened to those religious zealots, the Abolitionists, who also were told to keep their morality to themselves and keep their hands off other people's property: property being a major preoccupation of the "Enlightenment."

You are right as to the nature of the contract we are ruled by, but nothing in its terms prevents its terms from being changed.  That includes a communist who wants to reformulate society, the fascist who wants to regulate it, or the religious zealot who wants to go behind the Common Law to the Divine Law at the basis of society.

Men wrote the Constitution.  Men (or should I say humans?) can change it, whether from the right or left.

Now the question of whether Christianity demands that, as say opposed to the demands of Islam in the similar situation, that's another question, which the Enlightenment has no authority to answer.
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« Reply #52 on: February 23, 2008, 04:17:54 AM »

What I think you're missing in the above, though, is this:  Jesus lived and preached in a society that was essentially a theocracy founded on the all-encompassing spiritual and civil laws revealed to Moses on Mount Sinai, laws that Jesus revealed Himself as the pre-incarnate and eternally begotten Son of God.  And, just as God chastised His people, the people of Israel, time and time again for their sins, so the Son of God, Jesus Christ, chastised His people in the Temple, the Temple whose rituals Christ Himself commanded.

While the Jews of Christ's law were able had a certain amount of self governance using the Mosaic Law, they were essentially under a military occupation by a pagan empire.  I think it is significant that in light of this context the message of the Gospel is remarkably apolitical and personal. 

Thinking about early Christian literature, the Apology of St. Justin Martyr is about the most directly political text that comes to mind - and that was really nothing more than stating that Christians were not violating imperial laws and therefore should not be persecuted.  My memory is fuzzy so I'll have to pull it out, but when St. Augustine was talking about the games in his Confessions I think his point was that it would be immoral for a Christian to attend rather than attempting to have the games closed through political ends.

You're confusing the issue of "authority."

The argument was similarly made by the enlightened to those religious zealots, the Abolitionists, who also were told to keep their morality to themselves and keep their hands off other people's property: property being a major preoccupation of the "Enlightenment."

You are right as to the nature of the contract we are ruled by, but nothing in its terms prevents its terms from being changed.  That includes a communist who wants to reformulate society, the fascist who wants to regulate it, or the religious zealot who wants to go behind the Common Law to the Divine Law at the basis of society.

Men wrote the Constitution.  Men (or should I say humans?) can change it, whether from the right or left.

Now the question of whether Christianity demands that, as say opposed to the demands of Islam in the similar situation, that's another question, which the Enlightenment has no authority to answer.

19-century American history is definitely not my forte, but I don't remember the slavery debate being framed as a non-religious group vs. a religious group.  While many of the of the abolitionists drew inspiration for their ideology from Christianity, I think it would be a hard argument to make that the ante-bellum South was a hotbed of radical secularism and non-religion. 
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« Reply #53 on: February 23, 2008, 07:57:02 AM »

While the Jews of Christ's law were able had a certain amount of self governance using the Mosaic Law, they were essentially under a military occupation by a pagan empire.  I think it is significant that in light of this context the message of the Gospel is remarkably apolitical and personal. 

Thinking about early Christian literature, the Apology of St. Justin Martyr is about the most directly political text that comes to mind - and that was really nothing more than stating that Christians were not violating imperial laws and therefore should not be persecuted.  My memory is fuzzy so I'll have to pull it out, but when St. Augustine was talking about the games in his Confessions I think his point was that it would be immoral for a Christian to attend rather than attempting to have the games closed through political ends.

19-century American history is definitely not my forte, but I don't remember the slavery debate being framed as a non-religious group vs. a religious group.  While many of the of the abolitionists drew inspiration for their ideology from Christianity, I think it would be a hard argument to make that the ante-bellum South was a hotbed of radical secularism and non-religion. 
Chief Justice Taney, who wrote the Dred Scott decision, stated that although his personal religious views (he was Catholic) were against slavery (he freed all those he had inherited, and gave the old ones pensions), he couldn't impose those views on everyone.
Shouldn't be hard at all.  Thomas Jefferson was a son of the South, the father of secularism here, and quite the Renaissance thinker where he wrote that blacks were naturally inferior  to whites (an Enlightenment idea, btw), and smelt bad.
As for the non-religious vs. religious, the original and uncompromising Abolititionist movements all grew out of churches.
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« Reply #54 on: February 23, 2008, 03:35:51 PM »

Chief Justice Taney, who wrote the Dred Scott decision, stated that although his personal religious views (he was Catholic) were against slavery (he freed all those he had inherited, and gave the old ones pensions), he couldn't impose those views on everyone.

This is an issue of Constitutional Law and should be reserved for the politics forum.

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Shouldn't be hard at all.  Thomas Jefferson was a son of the South, the father of secularism here, and quite the Renaissance thinker where he wrote that blacks were naturally inferior  to whites (an Enlightenment idea, btw), and smelt bad.

The issue with Thomas Jefferson is MUCH more complex than the simplistic picture you are trying to paing. While he continued to hold slaves but never supported the institution, his acts and views may have been a bit hypocritical, but he did, at least, understand the ideals of the Enlightenment in theory. This hypocracy troubled him all his life and the pains of his conscience can clearly be seen in his writings, he wanted to free his slaves but was deeply in debt and could not do so as they were named as collateral for notes and mortgages, he desired to free his slaves once he had paid these notes, but with the decrease of land values in 1819 this would never be possible for him.

In 1769 he drafted legislation that was presented to the Virgina House of Burgesses to emancipate all slaves, but it was ultimately defeated. In his original draft of the declaration of independence he included words of condemnation for the Crown saying, 'charging that the crown "has waged cruel war against human nature itself, violating its most sacred rights of life and liberty in the persons of a distant people who never offended him, captivating & carrying them into slavery in another hemisphere.' But these words were removed at the insistence of delegates from South Carolina and Georgia. Due to his political activities, Virgina, whose economy was heavily dependent on slavery, became the first American state to ban the importing of slaves into the state, commenting on the legislation he said that it 'stopped the increase of the evil by importation, leaving to future efforts its final eradication.' In 1807, when it became constitutionally premissible to pass such a law, he signed the bill that outlawed the importing of slaves into the United States.

In his September 10, 1814 letter to Thomas Cooper he clearly laid out his political and philosophical views on the institution of slavery, when he said 'There is nothing I would not sacrifice to a practicable plan of abolishing every vestige of this moral and political depravity.'

In his well-known work, Notes on the State of Virginia, he said, 'There must doubtless be an unhappy influence on the manners of our people produced by the existence of slavery among us. The whole commerce between master and slave is a perpetual exercise of the most boisterous passions, the most unremitting despotism on the one part, and degrading submissions on the other.'

And while he did not view whites and blacks to be equals in matters of intelligence or capability (and, thus, did not believe that they could peacefully live together as equals in a common society), he did believe that they were equal in nature and that slavery was immoral.

What we see in Jefferson is not a condoning of slavery by enlightenment ideology, but rather the epitome of the traditional conflict between philosophical ideals and practical economics.

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As for the non-religious vs. religious, the original and uncompromising Abolititionist movements all grew out of churches.

Actually the divide was between liberal and conservative Christianity. Liberal Christianity, which had been heavily influenced by the Enlightenment, had become anti-slavery; conservative Christianity condemned these liberals for incorporating secular ideals into their theology and going directly against both the Old and New Testaments as well as Christian tradition. I would recommend Dr. Dabney's A Defence of Virginia and the South if you actually want to read about this theological controversy, though the book is clearly from the conservative side of the debate.
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« Reply #55 on: February 23, 2008, 06:25:50 PM »

To add to GiC's excellent post, I find it highly ironic to cite Christianity as this wonderful and positive force in the liberation of the slaves when it was in fact the Christian colonization of the New World that lead to the explosion of the slave trade - a trade that often justified the taking of Africans and American Indigenous peoples as slaves because they were non-Christians.  So all you can really conclude is that liberal Christians helped begin the process of righting the wrongs inflicted for centuries by other Christians. 
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« Reply #56 on: February 24, 2008, 01:31:03 AM »

Just a note from the other side...



John Henry Cardinal Newman, May 12, 1879


For thirty, forty, fifty years I have resisted to the best of my powers the spirit of Liberalism in religion....

Liberalism in religion is the doctrine that there is no positive truth in religion, but that one creed is as good as another, and this is the teaching which is gaining substance and force daily. It is inconsistent with any recognition of any religion, as true. It teaches that all are to be tolerated, for all are matters of opinion. Revealed religion is not a truth, but a sentiment and a taste; not an objective fact, not miraculous; and it is the right of each individual to make it say just what strikes his fancy.

... Hitherto, it has been considered that religion alone, with its supernatural sanctions, was strong enough to secure submission of the masses of our population to law and order; now the Philosophers and Politicians are bent on satisfying this problem without the aid of Christianity. Instead of the Church's authority and teaching, they would substitute first of all a universal and thoroughly secular education, calculated to bring home to every individual that to be orderly, industrious, and sober is his personal interest....

There never was a device of the Enemy so cleverly framed and with such promise of success. And already it has answered to the expectations which have been formed of it. It is sweeping into its own ranks great numbers of able, earnest, virtuous men, elderly men of approved antecedents, young men with a career before them.

... I lament it deeply, because I foresee that it may be the ruin of many souls; but I have no fear at all that it really can do aught of serious harm to the Word of God, to Holy Church, to our Almighty King, the Lion of the tribe of Judah, Faithful and True, or to His Vicar on earth.

Christianity has been too often in what seemed deadly peril, that we should fear for it any new trial now....

[From Rorate Caeli Blog]

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« Reply #57 on: February 24, 2008, 05:21:06 AM »

I think many are missing the point on Bishop Hilarion's speech. The context is within the WCC. He is not speaking about those outside christianity but the various christianities themselves.  He is speaking about christians and their mentality. When he says liberal christianity he is speaking if those churches and christians who believe Jesus condones abortion, homosexuality euthanasia etc. Another words the liberal christian is the one who adopts the whims of popular culture as gospel then goes out and preaches it. The speech isnt about how christians should react towards non christians, but how christians now believe that Jesus preached the virtues of same sex marriage, syncretism, and democratic ideals. He is saying how the gulf has spread between liberal christianity and traditional christianity (each group in the WCC will recognize itself as belonging to one of these camps) and they can no longer speak in unision about christian ideals since there is no such thing. One church's virtue is another church's heresy.
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« Reply #58 on: February 24, 2008, 09:19:12 AM »

This is an issue of Constitutional Law and should be reserved for the politics forum.

Taney is dead and the 13th Amendment passed.  The politics of it are closed.

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The issue with Thomas Jefferson is MUCH more complex than the simplistic picture you are trying to paing. While he continued to hold slaves but never supported the institution, his acts and views may have been a bit hypocritical, but he did, at least, understand the ideals of the Enlightenment in theory. This hypocracy troubled him all his life and the pains of his conscience can clearly be seen in his writings, he wanted to free his slaves but was deeply in debt and could not do so as they were named as collateral for notes and mortgages, he desired to free his slaves once he had paid these notes, but with the decrease of land values in 1819 this would never be possible for him.

In 1769 he drafted legislation that was presented to the Virgina House of Burgesses to emancipate all slaves, but it was ultimately defeated. In his original draft of the declaration of independence he included words of condemnation for the Crown saying, 'charging that the crown "has waged cruel war against human nature itself, violating its most sacred rights of life and liberty in the persons of a distant people who never offended him, captivating & carrying them into slavery in another hemisphere.' But these words were removed at the insistence of delegates from South Carolina and Georgia. Due to his political activities, Virgina, whose economy was heavily dependent on slavery, became the first American state to ban the importing of slaves into the state, commenting on the legislation he said that it 'stopped the increase of the evil by importation, leaving to future efforts its final eradication.' In 1807, when it became constitutionally premissible to pass such a law, he signed the bill that outlawed the importing of slaves into the United States.

In his September 10, 1814 letter to Thomas Cooper he clearly laid out his political and philosophical views on the institution of slavery, when he said 'There is nothing I would not sacrifice to a practicable plan of abolishing every vestige of this moral and political depravity.'

In his well-known work, Notes on the State of Virginia, he said, 'There must doubtless be an unhappy influence on the manners of our people produced by the existence of slavery among us. The whole commerce between master and slave is a perpetual exercise of the most boisterous passions, the most unremitting despotism on the one part, and degrading submissions on the other.'

And while he did not view whites and blacks to be equals in matters of intelligence or capability (and, thus, did not believe that they could peacefully live together as equals in a common society), he did believe that they were equal in nature and that slavery was immoral.

What we see in Jefferson is not a condoning of slavery by enlightenment ideology, but rather the epitome of the traditional conflict between philosophical ideals and practical economics.

Sally Hemings.

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Actually the divide was between liberal and conservative Christianity. Liberal Christianity, which had been heavily influenced by the Enlightenment, had become anti-slavery; conservative Christianity condemned these liberals for incorporating secular ideals into their theology and going directly against both the Old and New Testaments as well as Christian tradition. I would recommend Dr. Dabney's A Defence of Virginia and the South if you actually want to read about this theological controversy, though the book is clearly from the conservative side of the debate.

The problem is you are talking about Protestantism, the Enlightenment's sibling, which incorporated secular ideals (like the church as a department of the state, and the theory of races) into their eisogesis of both OT and NT.

For instance, the Orthodox Church forbade dividing up the families of slaves and the empires under Rome had laws (until the Enlightened officials removed them) that a baptized slave was free.  But for those heavily influenced by the Enlightenment, this was all superstition, and they removed it from the books.
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« Reply #59 on: February 24, 2008, 09:34:46 AM »

To add to GiC's excellent post, I find it highly ironic to cite Christianity as this wonderful and positive force in the liberation of the slaves when it was in fact the Christian colonization of the New World that lead to the explosion of the slave trade - a trade that often justified the taking of Africans and American Indigenous peoples as slaves because they were non-Christians.  So all you can really conclude is that liberal Christians helped begin the process of righting the wrongs inflicted for centuries by other Christians. 

Do you mean the Christian colonization, or the colonization by "Christians."
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« Reply #60 on: February 24, 2008, 09:38:04 AM »

I think many are missing the point on Bishop Hilarion's speech. The context is within the WCC. He is not speaking about those outside christianity but the various christianities themselves.  He is speaking about christians and their mentality. When he says liberal christianity he is speaking if those churches and christians who believe Jesus condones abortion, homosexuality euthanasia etc. Another words the liberal christian is the one who adopts the whims of popular culture as gospel then goes out and preaches it. The speech isnt about how christians should react towards non christians, but how christians now believe that Jesus preached the virtues of same sex marriage, syncretism, and democratic ideals. He is saying how the gulf has spread between liberal christianity and traditional christianity (each group in the WCC will recognize itself as belonging to one of these camps) and they can no longer speak in unision about christian ideals since there is no such thing. One church's virtue is another church's heresy.
Liberal Christian doesn't see the difference.  The Church is to bow to the world, and that's that.  How dare the Church resist their "reasoning." Roll Eyes police

You are right.  Taught of being yoked in such a "supra" Church is showing its cracks.
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« Reply #61 on: February 24, 2008, 12:37:19 PM »

Do you mean the Christian colonization, or the colonization by "Christians."

Last I checked, most conquistadors carried around a priest with them.  The ideas behind the line of demarcation came right from the Papacy itself, i.e the concept that if one isn't a Christian they have no right to live on their land.  And of course the actual role of the priest was to certify that the natives had been made aware of this by the conquistador reading through some document in court Spanish. 

It is very disingenuous to cherry pick a few stellar examples of Christianity and say that represents Christianity and compare it against the worst examples of non-Christians.   
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« Reply #62 on: February 24, 2008, 02:06:45 PM »

hi LINK REMOVED



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« Reply #63 on: February 24, 2008, 07:11:00 PM »

Sally Hemings.

Relevance? I should have expected that things like facts would be lost on you.

Quote
The problem is you are talking about Protestantism, the Enlightenment's sibling, which incorporated secular ideals (like the church as a department of the state, and the theory of races) into their eisogesis of both OT and NT.

For instance, the Orthodox Church forbade dividing up the families of slaves and the empires under Rome had laws (until the Enlightened officials removed them) that a baptized slave was free.  But for those heavily influenced by the Enlightenment, this was all superstition, and they removed it from the books.

And, yet, the Orthodox Church still failed to eliminate slavery. While Liberal Christianity, influenced by the ideals of the Enlightenment, did remove it from all the regions of the world where it held sway.
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« Reply #64 on: February 24, 2008, 09:43:00 PM »

Last I checked, most conquistadors carried around a priest with them.

I know that Pizarro did.  I'm not sure about Cortez.  Are you?

One can call the sending of St. Herman, or SS Cyril and Methodius, and even Francis Xavier Christian missions.  Was that part of the conquistadores charter?

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The ideas behind the line of demarcation came right from the Papacy itself,

I have only a passing interest in what Rome does, until she returns to the Orthodox Faith.

Did the idea come from the pope of Rome? My understanding it was a mediation between Spain and Portugal.

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i.e the concept that if one isn't a Christian they have no right to live on their land.


Notice the line ignored Protestant England, the Netherslands and Sweden, Orthodox Russia, let alone Latin France.

 
Quote
And of course the actual role of the priest was to certify that the natives had been made aware of this by the conquistador reading through some document in court Spanish.
 

Source?

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It is very disingenuous to cherry pick a few stellar examples of Christianity and say that represents Christianity and compare it against the worst examples of non-Christians.   

In the original post I neither picked cherries nor compares the worst of non-Christians.
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« Reply #65 on: February 24, 2008, 09:56:27 PM »

Relevance? I should have expected that things like facts would be lost on you.

Are you denying the facts of Sally's children, and their father?

To be honest, I'm more sickened by the fact that Sally was the half-sister of Tom's dead wife.  Even more objectification of a human being, supposedly an Enlightenment concern.

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And, yet, the Orthodox Church still failed to eliminate slavery. While Liberal Christianity, influenced by the ideals of the Enlightenment, did remove it from all the regions of the world where it held sway.
After the Renaissance and Enlightenment spread it to new lows.

I've yet to see the evidence that John Newton and William Wilberforce were liberal Christians. Most see them as early Evangelicals (yes, those moral majority types: one of Wilburforce's children was the Society for the Suppression of Vice.  I don't think it had an Enlightenment agenda).
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« Reply #66 on: February 25, 2008, 03:37:14 AM »

Source?

Pretty much everything I posted can be found in First Peoples : a Documentary Survey of American Indian History by Colin G. Galloway, second edition.  Since you specifically asked about my source for the Requerimento, that can be found pages 69-70. 

It is things like that which make the whole concept of Christian triumphalism utterly nauseating.  But, I don't simply think this way about Christianity: any religion, philosophy, political ideology etc. is going to stray from its core values when it becomes a group identity rather than a personal identity.  I really can't think of anything that really merits being triumphalistic over.  As Socrates is alleged to have said, "The unreflected life isn't worth living."
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« Reply #67 on: February 25, 2008, 11:08:45 AM »

"Our holy mission is to preach what Christ preached, to teach what the apostles taught and to propagate what the holy Fathers propagated."

Now this is what the world needs to hear! Wink
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« Reply #68 on: December 04, 2012, 10:33:30 PM »

I think the more progressive memebers of this board (or myself, at least) have been staying out of this thread so you all can continue your 'traditionalist-Christianity lovefest'. And I'm sure everyone posting here has been grateful for this...do you really want to try to pull us into this discussion?

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« Reply #69 on: December 05, 2012, 03:29:12 PM »

Help! I cannot find the article in the link!
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« Reply #70 on: December 06, 2012, 09:52:39 AM »

Help! I cannot find the article in the link!
It likely doesn't exist anymore. If you noticed, the OP is nearly five years old.
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« Reply #71 on: December 06, 2012, 11:00:39 AM »

Help! I cannot find the article in the link!
It likely doesn't exist anymore. If you noticed, the OP is nearly five years old.
Is this it?
http://www.lee-burgin.com/ancientfaith/B814097505/C305433842/E20080222091544/index.html

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« Reply #72 on: December 06, 2012, 07:31:27 PM »

"Dittos."
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« Reply #73 on: December 10, 2012, 10:07:06 AM »

Help! I cannot find the article in the link!
It likely doesn't exist anymore. If you noticed, the OP is nearly five years old.

oh... woops...
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