As a student of Early Christian history and Second Temple Judaism, I must say that your understanding of sin is dismally poor and rather one-sided.
As someone who isn't student, I'd like to say you should graduate, to preach to others based from the position of graduated student. Once you gain experience in addition to diploma, you'll realize the difference - the former is prerequisite but the later is required too. BTW, you'll learn that the difficulty in internet fora is that you never know with whom you are debating.
As an Orthodox Christian, I'd like to inform you that, or course, I take the advice, but only from priests and brothers with whom I'm in communion, and you, as Malankara Syrian, aren't among these.
I'm always amazed how, when people find themselves in the wrong, they will resort to tactics like this on the forum-- tactics so UN
Orthodox that they completely invalidate any good point the person may have had to begin with.
Why don't we dispense with the sour grapes and continue the discussion in a loving Christian manner? This is a perfect example of the "high horse" I was talking about-- judging him unworthy to point out a scholarly error and to speak the truth in love because he doesn't meet YOUR standards of holiness. And my friend, if "priests and brothers with whom I'm in communion" is the way I
decided who I listen to, I'd be in serious trouble. As many of the one's I'm in communion with have no idea what they're talking about, and many of the one's I'm NOT in communion with are far holier and closer to God than I (like my Grandma, who was Southern Baptist, may her memory be eternal).
That's not to say we shouldn't use discernment in deciding who we listen to, but let's use our minds to decide what information we feel is worth hearing, rather than dismissing someones words out of hand because they're not in communion with us.
As far as your assertions as to what I said in my last post, I thought I was clear, but I guess I didn't express myself as clearly as I thought.
I DO NOT believe in the branch theory, I DO believe the Orthodox Church is the ONE TRUE Church. "Getting off our high horses" DOES NOT mean sacrificing any of our doctrine, dogma, or practice. It DOES NOT mean "faster unity." I have no idea where you got "faster unity" from... how quickly we are reunited is irrelevant as far as I'm concerned. We should be sure to "take our time and do it right," to quote the late, great Mr. Rogers.
What "getting off our high horses" DOES mean is that we should EXERCISE HUMILITY. We have been given a great gift in our Orthodoxy. But being cocky and having an Unchristian attitude- one absent of love and full of pride- will do us no good, and WE will be judged for that.
As far as my unwillingness to say that the Catholic Church is without grace, etc... all I am saying is that I am NOT in a position to be making any judgements about where the Holy Spirit resides. I have no business saying whether they do or do not have grace. I think you were reading that I am leaving the possibility open that they may have grace. I'm not-- I will not make ANY judgements about the state of grace in the Catholic Church. Hope that makes more sense. If it doesn't, I apologize, I'm not that eloquent and have trouble articulating exactly what I think.
Though my tone may sound harsh, I don't mean it that way. It's hard to type what I'm thinking without it reading that way, so please don't think I'm trying to judge or be negative in general. I'm simply trying to speak the truth in love... I felt that the comments toward OrthodoxPilgrim were hurtful and unnecessary. I hope we can move on with the discussion in a productive manner.OrthodoxPilgrim
I was touched by your comments about Love in Truth and about the Prodigal son. I was especially touched that you said:
Irrespective of Rome repenting or not, we must still go ahead and stretch out our hands. If the premise of your thoughts are that a prerequisite of sorts are required for Love to be displayed, then the Incarnation, Crucifixion and the glorious Resurrection wouldn't have happened my friend....The end result of our journey is to become more like God (in theosis). One of the first steps, we can try to become literally that is by displaying God's love towards others...
This is exactly what I was feeling. We should be forgiving
cross our arms and say "you didn't say sorry, so we're not going to talk." We shouldn't "take our ball and go home," as my mom would say, just because they didn't apologize. That is not what Christ would do. We should show LOVE and FORGIVENESS and come to the table anyway.