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Author Topic: What do you think of other religions?  (Read 7044 times) Average Rating: 0
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believer74
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« on: July 10, 2009, 02:09:15 AM »

I'm interested to hear what folks on this forum think, REALLY THINK, of other people's faiths.  Protestant, Jewish, Muslim, any.  Do you believe God has revealed aspects of Himself in other places and times?
Do you feel we have something to learn from non-Christian religion? 
Do you believe one can be saved outside Orthodoxy?  Outside of Christianity?
"On the ground," do you tend to get to know people of other traditions?

So, please be honest. Thanks. 

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« Reply #1 on: July 10, 2009, 02:37:51 AM »

Signs of God are everywhere. But the Fullness of the Faith is only in Orthodox Christianity.
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« Reply #2 on: July 10, 2009, 03:03:28 AM »

I studied the religions of the world for years in the academy.  I also studied Christian history and theology for several years.  I say all of that to say that God led me to the Orthodox Church.  The #1 religion in the world!!!
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« Reply #3 on: July 10, 2009, 07:54:51 AM »

I tendentially divide non-Orthodox religions into four categories:
1) Pre-Christian religions (such as Zoroastrianism, Judaism, Hinduism, Buddhism and many extinct or non-extinct religions)
2) Heterodox Trinitarian churches (such as mainline Protestantism, Roman Catholicism, Anglicanism and Old Catholicism)
3) Anti-trinitarian Christ-based parachurches (Jehovism, Mormonism, Unitarianism and Islamism)
4) Anti-Christian religious movements (Baha'i faith, Raelism, Scientology, New Age...)

My attitude towards these movements largely depends on their origins and faith...

1) The first group I think might be made of faiths and philosophies containing *seeds* of truth, prefiguring the coming of Christ. For example, Zoroastrianism is a quasi-monotheistic religion, and in the character of Mithra are prefigured many elements later absorbed in the Orthodox Church, such as birth of Mithra (Messiah) on December 25th (the Magi were also of this religion). On Judaism I maintain a cold approach: I mean I respect the Jewish people but I still condemn the Jewish authorities who manipulated the Bible and who consider Jesus as a sort of political rebel and not at least as a great rabbi... I am also fascinated by Hinduism as the Trimurti seems to prefigure the Holy Trinity, especially the image of Vishnu taking on his avatars, sorts of incarnations... I find that these religions are good, and indeed most of them (except Judaism) have no specific hatred against Christianity.
2) I generally have a high esteem towards Oriental Orthodox (whom I particularly love and respect, considering them as our "lesser brethrens"), Old Catholics and Anglicans (of course, I like especially the most traditional ones). I don't like many protestant movements but I generally respect Lutheranism. On the Roman Catholic Church, I believe that there are true believers in it and that it also produced many saints, yet I still consider its hierarchy to be overtly in heresy (especially popes).
3) I strongly hate Jehovah's Witnesses and Mormons. I mean the heresiarchs, of course. I find myself convinced that their believers won't probably be saved - or better, they could have even less probabilities to be saved then a pagan believer, 'cause they know of Christ but openly reject his Divinity and the essence of his Gospel. I don't hate Muslims so much, but I still consider them as strongly heretic and associated with JWs and Mormons for that reason.
4) Bahai's are openly anti-Christian. They believe a mixture of different Gnostic Judaisms and consider Jesus to be an impostor. I think Baha'i are at the highest level of heresy. Raelism, Scientology and New Age are false religions, and true relativistic movements. They either transform Jesus into an alien (Raelism), into an enlightened man (Scientology) or into one of a series of buddha-like characters (and even not the most important one!). They either don't believe in a true God or relativistically leave the question of Godhead at a personal level, so that they aren't true religions stricto sensu. Definitely, those in this category are entirely outside of God's grace, since they mistreat Jesus, often even rejecting his good works and teachings... How could they be saved when they murder Jesus again and again with their words?

In conclusion, I'll add that only God can decide who will be saved outside of Orthodoxy, providing extra-ordinary grace to them. Grace is surely present, in an ordinary and full way, only within the Orthodox Church!
I'd like to know what others think about this.

In Christ,   Alex
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« Reply #4 on: July 10, 2009, 07:56:33 AM »

I'm interested to hear what folks on this forum think, REALLY THINK, of other people's faiths.  Protestant, Jewish, Muslim, any.  Do you believe God has revealed aspects of Himself in other places and times?
Do you feel we have something to learn from non-Christian religion? 
Do you believe one can be saved outside Orthodoxy?  Outside of Christianity?
"On the ground," do you tend to get to know people of other traditions?

So, please be honest. Thanks. 



Some religions lead towards God, some lead away from Him.  Only Orthodoxy leads to Him.
You can learn something from anything.
Outside it?  Yes. Without it, no.
Yes, I know plenty of people of various religions.
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« Reply #5 on: July 10, 2009, 09:13:36 AM »

4) Bahai's are openly anti-Christian. They believe a mixture of different Gnostic Judaisms and consider Jesus to be an impostor. I think Baha'i are at the highest level of heresy.

Uhhh... you might want to do some re-reading of the Baha'i faith.  They consider Jesus to be a Manifestation of God.  They also consider Baha'u'llah to be the 2nd coming of Christ.

I'd hardly think they'd be spouting their newest Manifestation as a return of one of the old ones were he an "imposter" (whatever that means).

Quote from: Baha'u'llah
“Know though that when the Son of Man yielded up His breath to God, the whole creation wept with a great weeping. By sacrificing Himself, however, a fresh capacity was infused into all created things…We testify that when He came into the world, He shed the splendor of His glory upon all created things…Through His power, born of Almighty God, the eyes of the blind were opened, and the soul of the sinner sanctified.”
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« Reply #6 on: July 10, 2009, 09:17:39 AM »

4) Bahai's are openly anti-Christian. They believe a mixture of different Gnostic Judaisms and consider Jesus to be an impostor. I think Baha'i are at the highest level of heresy.

Uhhh... you might want to do some re-reading of the Baha'i faith.  They consider Jesus to be a Manifestation of God.  They also consider Baha'u'llah to be the 2nd coming of Christ.

I'd hardly think they'd be spouting their newest Manifestation as a return of one of the old ones were he an "imposter" (whatever that means).

Quote from: Baha'u'llah
“Know though that when the Son of Man yielded up His breath to God, the whole creation wept with a great weeping. By sacrificing Himself, however, a fresh capacity was infused into all created things…We testify that when He came into the world, He shed the splendor of His glory upon all created things…Through His power, born of Almighty God, the eyes of the blind were opened, and the soul of the sinner sanctified.”

They have their own theology and their own sacred writings.  What the heck does "Gnostic Judaisms" mean?    Huh
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« Reply #7 on: July 10, 2009, 09:34:03 AM »

I very strongly agree with what Ukiemeister and Ialmisry said above.

Certainly, one can learn a lot from various religions, but it is not correct to assume that all of them express the truth, just in different ways. I, too, believe that certain religions, especialy the present-day New Age or neopagan religions, lead away from God rather than to God (because they so strongly accent on self-indulgence, serving self).

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« Reply #8 on: July 10, 2009, 10:02:30 AM »

Frankly, I don't think about them at all.  Wink
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« Reply #9 on: July 10, 2009, 10:12:11 AM »

We should be always willing to learn from others. Where there is wisdom, it holds value for us, even if it comes from one who is not of us.
I don't know if anyone can be saved, but I hope so. I trust that the Church will tell me how to be saved, and if others trust other religions, I hope it works for them. Mostly I don't want to see anyone perish.
I do know people of other traditions. Because of my location, I know mostly evangelicals and Catholics, but I do know a few mainline Protestants, and I work with a woman whose family is LDS. I realize that all these fall under "Christianity," but in the Ozarks, there really aren't any other religions to speak of.
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« Reply #10 on: July 10, 2009, 11:54:02 AM »

We should be always willing to learn from others. Where there is wisdom, it holds value for us, even if it comes from one who is not of us.
I don't know if anyone can be saved, but I hope so. I trust that the Church will tell me how to be saved, and if others trust other religions, I hope it works for them. Mostly I don't want to see anyone perish.
I do know people of other traditions. Because of my location, I know mostly evangelicals and Catholics, but I do know a few mainline Protestants, and I work with a woman whose family is LDS. I realize that all these fall under "Christianity," but in the Ozarks, there really aren't any other religions to speak of.

I make it a practice to attempt to learn from each individual I encounter.  In some ways I see these meetings as meant to impart some lesson or opportunity. But this does not extend beyond the individual to his other religion.
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« Reply #11 on: July 10, 2009, 12:45:05 PM »

πάντες οἱ θεοὶ τῶν ἐθνῶν δαιμόνια
列邦諸神皆邪魔
(All the gods of nations demons)
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« Reply #12 on: July 10, 2009, 04:10:16 PM »

Signs of God are everywhere. But the Fullness of the Faith is only in Orthodox Christianity.

Amen to that, brother.
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« Reply #13 on: July 10, 2009, 06:26:17 PM »

Thanks for indulging me, all.  Just trying to gain a better sense of the climate.  To be honest I think I don't fit very well.  I think that somehow, although I believe I am overall a good person, at another level, I am a 'bad' Orthodox.  Or maybe these forums are not an accurate microcosm of the Orthodox world.
I believe in God.  I need Him.  I was a Catholic, and I always had a feeling that wasn't where I belonged.
I converted to this religion two years ago and I still just can't embrace the fierce attitude so many people around me seem to adhere to.  No one seems to be unsure of their faith, or at least they don't talk about it in much detail.  I confess to doubt (e.g. teachings,) and am told I just think too much.
I feel a sense of otherness.  Again.  (Sigh.)
 I don't expect anyone to offer me a solution, at times one just needs to vent b/c they have no one in real life to whom such things can be revealed without a degree of risk. 

peace,
c
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« Reply #14 on: July 10, 2009, 08:03:47 PM »

I'm interested to hear what folks on this forum think, REALLY THINK, of other people's faiths.  Protestant, Jewish, Muslim, any. 

I believe that all truth comes from the One True God, wherever it is found. I believe that what we do in this life is more important than whether or not we have the correct doctrine. I'm not meaning to belittle Orthodoxy in any way, I believe the correct doctrine is found within the Church. But just because I believe that, doesn't mean that all other religions are demonic.

Quote
Do you believe God has revealed aspects of Himself in other places and times?

Yes.

Quote
Do you feel we have something to learn from non-Christian religion? 

Yes.

Quote
Do you believe one can be saved outside Orthodoxy?  Outside of Christianity?

Yes.

Quote
"On the ground," do you tend to get to know people of other traditions?

Yes.



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« Reply #15 on: July 10, 2009, 08:17:34 PM »

Ridikkulus,

How do you come to the view, as a Christian, that there is Salvation outside of what Christ has done for us?
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« Reply #16 on: July 10, 2009, 08:24:14 PM »

Thanks for indulging me, all.  Just trying to gain a better sense of the climate.  To be honest I think I don't fit very well. I think that somehow, although I believe I am overall a good person, at another level, I am a 'bad' Orthodox.  Or maybe these forums are not an accurate microcosm of the Orthodox world.

They probably aren't; and probably shouldn't be taken too seriously.

Quote
I believe in God.  I need Him.  I was a Catholic, and I always had a feeling that wasn't where I belonged.
I converted to this religion two years ago and I still just can't embrace the fierce attitude so many people around me seem to adhere to. 

I know exactly what you mean. I've haven't experienced that fierce partisanship, either.

Quote
  No one seems to be unsure of their faith, or at least they don't talk about it in much detail.  I confess to doubt (e.g. teachings,) and am told I just think too much.

I don't consider myself ever as being unsure of my faith in God, but I confess I have doubt regarding many things that some people place a great importance on. I have been told the same thing with regard to thinking too much; usually by people I believe think too little. Wink

Quote
I feel a sense of otherness.  Again.  (Sigh.)

I think that's fine as long as it doesn't lead us into pride, the kind of "I see dumb people" pride that could lead us into some kind of narcissistic delusion.

Quote
I don't expect anyone to offer me a solution, at times one just needs to vent b/c they have no one in real life to whom such things can be revealed without a degree of risk. 

While I can't offer you a solution, I do agree. Venting is important! Smiley

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« Reply #17 on: July 10, 2009, 08:52:59 PM »

Ridikkulus,

How do you come to the view, as a Christian, that there is Salvation outside of what Christ has done for us?

I don't hold to the view that there is Salvation outside of what Christ has done for us, for all mankind. I do, however, hold to the view that knowing what Christ has done for all of mankind, mercy is the prerogative of God and we overstep our boundaries if we say that those outside the Church are condemned because they don't have correct knowledge.

Being Orthodox is no guarantee of salvation; neither is being outside the faith a guarantee of condemnation. We see this in the parable of the Good Samaritan. Christ, in that story, is clearly approving of the actions of a person from a group loathed by those who thought they had all the right answers. And yet the man with the *incorrect doctrine*, outside of those who thought they were guaranteed a ticket to heaven, is the one who loves his neighbour; the one approved by Christ. One can imagine the consternation of those who heard that story from Christ's own lips. How could a condemned infidel be the hero of any tale? And yet Christ chose to tell that story for the very reason of making a point regarding the importance of loving one's neighbour.

Matthew 25 shows us that how we love is important. God judges the heart; the one who responds to Christ's law of love without knowing of Him may be judged as righteous. Christ makes it clear that not all those who cry "Lord, Lord" are saved. Many who *know* Him are rejected; having believed themselves to be the conduits of all truth. But in doing the wrong of not loving their fellow man, they really only have a head knowledge and are condemned by their own lack of practical love. 

edited for clarity  Embarrassed

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« Reply #18 on: July 10, 2009, 09:23:32 PM »

Ridikkulus,

How do you come to the view, as a Christian, that there is Salvation outside of what Christ has done for us?

I don't hold to the view that there is Salvation outside of what Christ has done for us, for all mankind. I do, however, hold to the view that knowing what Christ has done for all of mankind, mercy is the prerogative of God and we overstep our boundaries if we say that those outside the Church are condemned because they don't have correct knowledge.

Being Orthodox is no guarantee of salvation; neither is being outside the faith a guarantee of condemnation. We see this in the parable of the Good Samaritan. Christ, in that story, is clearly approving of the actions of a person from a group loathed by those who thought they had all the right answers. And yet the man with the *incorrect doctrine*, outside of those who thought they were guaranteed a ticket to heaven, is the one who loves his neighbour; the one approved by Christ. One can imagine the consternation of those who heard that story from Christ's own lips. How could a condemned infidel be the hero of any tale? And yet Christ chose to tell that story for the very reason of making a point regarding the importance of loving one's neighbour.

Matthew 25 shows us that how we love is important. God judges the heart; the one who responds to Christ's law of love without knowing of Him may be judged as righteous. Christ makes it clear that not all those who cry "Lord, Lord" are saved. Many who *know* Him are rejected; having believed themselves to be the conduits of all truth. But in doing the wrong of not loving their fellow man, they really only have a head knowledge and are condemned by their own lack of practical love. 

edited for clarity  Embarrassed



So in a sense, it's another type of belief in election?  (sorry if my questions sound ignorant...I'm trying to connect things)
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« Reply #19 on: July 10, 2009, 09:27:16 PM »

Ridikkulus,

How do you come to the view, as a Christian, that there is Salvation outside of what Christ has done for us?

I don't hold to the view that there is Salvation outside of what Christ has done for us, for all mankind. I do, however, hold to the view that knowing what Christ has done for all of mankind, mercy is the prerogative of God and we overstep our boundaries if we say that those outside the Church are condemned because they don't have correct knowledge.

Being Orthodox is no guarantee of salvation; neither is being outside the faith a guarantee of condemnation. We see this in the parable of the Good Samaritan. Christ, in that story, is clearly approving of the actions of a person from a group loathed by those who thought they had all the right answers. And yet the man with the *incorrect doctrine*, outside of those who thought they were guaranteed a ticket to heaven, is the one who loves his neighbour; the one approved by Christ. One can imagine the consternation of those who heard that story from Christ's own lips. How could a condemned infidel be the hero of any tale? And yet Christ chose to tell that story for the very reason of making a point regarding the importance of loving one's neighbour.

Matthew 25 shows us that how we love is important. God judges the heart; the one who responds to Christ's law of love without knowing of Him may be judged as righteous. Christ makes it clear that not all those who cry "Lord, Lord" are saved. Many who *know* Him are rejected; having believed themselves to be the conduits of all truth. But in doing the wrong of not loving their fellow man, they really only have a head knowledge and are condemned by their own lack of practical love. 

edited for clarity  Embarrassed



So in a sense, it's another type of belief in election?  (sorry if my questions sound ignorant...I'm trying to connect things)

You will have to forgive my ignorance. I don't know what you mean by *belief in election*. Smiley
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« Reply #20 on: July 10, 2009, 09:29:43 PM »

Ridikkulus,

How do you come to the view, as a Christian, that there is Salvation outside of what Christ has done for us?

I don't hold to the view that there is Salvation outside of what Christ has done for us, for all mankind. I do, however, hold to the view that knowing what Christ has done for all of mankind, mercy is the prerogative of God and we overstep our boundaries if we say that those outside the Church are condemned because they don't have correct knowledge.

Being Orthodox is no guarantee of salvation; neither is being outside the faith a guarantee of condemnation. We see this in the parable of the Good Samaritan. Christ, in that story, is clearly approving of the actions of a person from a group loathed by those who thought they had all the right answers. And yet the man with the *incorrect doctrine*, outside of those who thought they were guaranteed a ticket to heaven, is the one who loves his neighbour; the one approved by Christ. One can imagine the consternation of those who heard that story from Christ's own lips. How could a condemned infidel be the hero of any tale? And yet Christ chose to tell that story for the very reason of making a point regarding the importance of loving one's neighbour.

Matthew 25 shows us that how we love is important. God judges the heart; the one who responds to Christ's law of love without knowing of Him may be judged as righteous. Christ makes it clear that not all those who cry "Lord, Lord" are saved. Many who *know* Him are rejected; having believed themselves to be the conduits of all truth. But in doing the wrong of not loving their fellow man, they really only have a head knowledge and are condemned by their own lack of practical love. 

edited for clarity  Embarrassed



So in a sense, it's another type of belief in election?  (sorry if my questions sound ignorant...I'm trying to connect things)

You will have to forgive my ignorance. I don't know what you mean by *belief in election*. Smiley

That God chooses those that are His and those that are not.
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« Reply #21 on: July 10, 2009, 09:30:58 PM »


I don't hold to the view that there is Salvation outside of what Christ has done for us, for all mankind. I do, however, hold to the view that knowing what Christ has done for all of mankind, mercy is the prerogative of God and we overstep our boundaries if we say that those outside the Church are condemned because they don't have correct knowledge.

Being Orthodox is no guarantee of salvation...

I completely agree. Well said.  Smiley
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« Reply #22 on: July 10, 2009, 09:57:38 PM »

Dear believer74,

Very good question.

Judaism, Islam, Hinduism, Voodoo, Spiritism, and all of the non christian religions are different forms of paganism, they do not believe in the one true God.

Roman Catholicism, Protestantism, Jehova Witnesses, and the rest of "christian" religions are different groups of heretics, meaning they have their own particular believes, different from those revealed to us by God. Even though they claim to be christians, they are worst than pagans, for they believe and preach a false christ.

The True Orthodox Church is the One Holy Catholic and Apostolic Church, where Christ is preached, and where sound doctrine is preserved unchanged.

In matters of faith and spirituality, you have nothing to learn from pagans and heretics, but in traditions, there are many things you can learn.

On the ground, in my day to day life, I get to know people from all over the world, with different religions, and I really enjoy talking to them, and learning their languages, their traditions, and what they believe.

For example, I know people from India, they are hinduists, and I learned many things from them. For example, to say hello, they put their hands together, at the level of their chests, make a gentle bow and say "namaste".

Namaste is usually translated as "hello", but it is not hello, it's a word with deep meaning, a way to show others absolute respect, something like saying "I see God in you".

As a christian, I know we are all created at image and resemblance of God, and we should respect each others, and I found that greeting very correct, like a bit of truth dropped among pagans, and I took it.

I like saying "namaste", bowing, and saying a little silent prayer in my head like "May Christ our God save you". Of course, I do this only with the indians, don't you think I'm flamboyant and go out there saying it to every single person.

You really have nothing to learn from a non christian and a heretical religion, and you can't be saved outside the True Orthodox Church, which is the One Holy Catholic and Apostolic Church.

But be not affraid, do not worry, our Lord and God Jesus Christ came to save us, and if you really want to be saved, He will take you to the One Church, which is the arc of salvation. Ask, and you'll receive, knock, and it will be opened. There is One God, One Saviour, One Church, and One path to salvation.

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« Reply #23 on: July 10, 2009, 10:20:13 PM »

Ridikkulus,

How do you come to the view, as a Christian, that there is Salvation outside of what Christ has done for us?

I don't hold to the view that there is Salvation outside of what Christ has done for us, for all mankind. I do, however, hold to the view that knowing what Christ has done for all of mankind, mercy is the prerogative of God and we overstep our boundaries if we say that those outside the Church are condemned because they don't have correct knowledge.

Being Orthodox is no guarantee of salvation; neither is being outside the faith a guarantee of condemnation. We see this in the parable of the Good Samaritan. Christ, in that story, is clearly approving of the actions of a person from a group loathed by those who thought they had all the right answers. And yet the man with the *incorrect doctrine*, outside of those who thought they were guaranteed a ticket to heaven, is the one who loves his neighbour; the one approved by Christ. One can imagine the consternation of those who heard that story from Christ's own lips. How could a condemned infidel be the hero of any tale? And yet Christ chose to tell that story for the very reason of making a point regarding the importance of loving one's neighbour.

Matthew 25 shows us that how we love is important. God judges the heart; the one who responds to Christ's law of love without knowing of Him may be judged as righteous. Christ makes it clear that not all those who cry "Lord, Lord" are saved. Many who *know* Him are rejected; having believed themselves to be the conduits of all truth. But in doing the wrong of not loving their fellow man, they really only have a head knowledge and are condemned by their own lack of practical love. 

edited for clarity  Embarrassed



So in a sense, it's another type of belief in election?  (sorry if my questions sound ignorant...I'm trying to connect things)

You will have to forgive my ignorance. I don't know what you mean by *belief in election*. Smiley

That God chooses those that are His and those that are not.

I think it's more about man responding to God, by God's grace. Those outside the Orthodox church are responding to charismatic Grace, (whether it be in another Christian tradition or one that is non-Christian), rather than the sacramental Grace found within the Church. Hopefully, by responding favourably to God (I couldn't think of another word beside *favourably*, and that doesn't sound quite right), one is brought into a relationship with Christ through His Church; but there are many reasons why that might not happen. If it doesn't, for whatever reason, I believe we would be rather arrogant in claiming that the *yes* to God of other people in the only way they might know of, is useless and that person is condemned.
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« Reply #24 on: July 10, 2009, 10:28:29 PM »

My personal opinions, I'm not asking those so entrusted to advocate these opinions officially, nor would I want them to. The Church should be more tolerant than what I am expressing below. The following is quickly and informally written.

Eastern Orthodox Christianity is the Fullness of the One True Faith.  Roman Catholicism  is to be quite respected, though errant, primarily because of the position they have granted to the Bishop of Rome, as time has gone by, though Orthodoxy lacks the organization that the Vatican has brought to Catholicism.  Anglicanism was nearer to the truth, but has progressively lost what bonafide Traditions it held previously because of the authority it gives to its Lambeth (sp) conferences.  Officially, all Trinitarian Christian denominations, Lutheran, Presbyterian, Methodist, Baptist, should be held in high esteem, but in the past 40 years have watered down their faith to a "God is Love" syndrome, symbolized by acceptance of homosexual and female clergy.  Assembly of God and that type, hold some valid theology, but no where near what should be within its tradition.

I hold Judaism in high esteem because it is the root of Holy Orthodoxy, but the "Reformed" wing is to Judaism what the United Church of Christ is to Orthodox Christianity.

Islam is false teaching and their inability to even speak out against their uncivilized followers who conduct spinless terroristic murder, in the name of their religion, renders this faith a danger to humanity.

Those Eastern religions are heresies, but St. Paul tells us those who have not heard the teachings of Christ, will be judged on their works.  

Those who leave Orthodoxy and Christianity are probably condemned to damnation, unfortunately.
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« Reply #25 on: July 10, 2009, 10:33:47 PM »

You really have nothing to learn from a non christian and a heretical religion, and you can't be saved outside the True Orthodox Church
I usually refrain from posting in matters such as these but....
Would you mind enlightening us on how arrived at this definitive? As far as I'm concerned, only God knows Who will be chosen. We have no right, as imperfect sinners, to make any assumption such as yours.

Peace be with you

George
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« Reply #26 on: July 10, 2009, 11:52:45 PM »


...you can't be saved outside the True Orthodox Church, .


<Can of worms opening>    I know that you honestly believe that, and that only Russian Zarist Church members will be saved.

Since you are the sole member of the Russian Zarist Church on this forum you are surrounded here by the dark souls of the damned.  That must be a bit scary for you so it takes a bit of courage to write here.   Does the Zarist Church have any programmes for bringing us to salvation?
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« Reply #27 on: July 11, 2009, 12:48:31 AM »

Dear George,

The Lord Himself in the bible calls heretics worst than pagans and His personal enemies, and in the whole bible we can read how the false teachers and the false doctrines, as well as pagans (the heathen) estrange themselves from the Saviour and will not be saved.

I wouldn't dare to state my personal opinion, or make any assumptions on this subject.

Thank you for your honest comment.



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« Reply #28 on: July 11, 2009, 01:15:02 AM »

.....Here We Go Again!.........IPC!  Shocked What a surprise!
Tell me, are ther only 144,000 of you as well?!

When will this guy be extracted from this forum?! Can I get a forum vote on this?!
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« Reply #29 on: July 11, 2009, 01:23:30 AM »

.....Here We Go Again!.........IPC!  Shocked What a surprise!
Tell me, are ther only 144,000 of you as well?!

When will this guy be extracted from this forum?! Can I get a forum vote on this?!

I would vote for his staying.  Thanks to IPC we can learn the views of the True Orthodox Churches.  It *is* a bit of a gamble to assume that IPC is a genuine representative of the True Orthodox Churches - I have wondered about this a little since the name of his Church does not include the word "Orthodox" but it is the "Russian Zarist Church" and seems more of a semi-political semi-religious group. 

Probably this thread "What do you think of other religions?" could be the right place to make enquiries about IPC's Church.
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« Reply #30 on: July 11, 2009, 01:30:13 AM »

Dear George,

The Lord Himself in the bible calls heretics worst than pagans and His personal enemies, and in the whole bible we can read how the false teachers and the false doctrines, as well as pagans (the heathen) estrange themselves from the Saviour and will not be saved.

I wouldn't dare to state my personal opinion, or make any assumptions on this subject.

Thank you for your honest comment.

If the Lord did as you say above, he would have been talking to Jewish Leaders who had manipulated God's dealings with the people of Israel in such a way that in their pride they couldn't recognise their own Messiah. In denying Him, these powerful few led those who followed them from their Annointed One and to eventual destruction. I'm not sure that we can take words that the Lord spoke to the religious leaders of His time and assume that they apply to everyone whom we might consider to be a heretic.   

I also feel that you are overstating the case concerning those who are pagans.

Fr. Thomas Hopko states in his "Church doctrine" series;

... although God's self-revelation in history through the chosen people of Israel--the revelation which culminates in the coming of Christ the Messiah--is of primary importance, it is also the doctrine of the Christian Church that all genuine strivings of men after the truth are fulfilled in Christ. Every genuine insight into the meaning of life finds its perfection in the Christian Gospel. Thus, the holy fathers of the Church taught that the yearnings of pagan religions and the wisdom of many philosophers are also capable of serving to prepare men for the doctrines of Jesus and are indeed valid and genuine ways to the one Truth of God.

In the final analysis, we don't know who is or isn't saved. We don't know what the outcome is for people of pagan faiths. Even as far as our own personal salvation goes, we rely on the mercy of God - and if we are incapable of judging our own salvation how much less can we speak of the salvation of others? God sees and understands much more than we could ever hope to see and understand and I would consider it very hazardous to ursurp His role as Judge and decide who is excluded from salvation.   
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« Reply #31 on: July 11, 2009, 02:05:54 AM »

Dear George,

The Lord Himself in the bible calls heretics worst than pagans and His personal enemies, and in the whole bible we can read how the false teachers and the false doctrines, as well as pagans (the heathen) estrange themselves from the Saviour and will not be saved.

I wouldn't dare to state my personal opinion, or make any assumptions on this subject.

Thank you for your honest comment.

If the Lord did as you say above, he would have been talking to Jewish Leaders who had manipulated God's dealings with the people of Israel in such a way that in their pride they couldn't recognise their own Messiah. In denying Him, these powerful few led those who followed them from their Annointed One and to eventual destruction. I'm not sure that we can take words that the Lord spoke to the religious leaders of His time and assume that they apply to everyone whom we might consider to be a heretic.   

I also feel that you are overstating the case concerning those who are pagans.

Fr. Thomas Hopko states in his "Church doctrine" series;

... although God's self-revelation in history through the chosen people of Israel--the revelation which culminates in the coming of Christ the Messiah--is of primary importance, it is also the doctrine of the Christian Church that all genuine strivings of men after the truth are fulfilled in Christ. Every genuine insight into the meaning of life finds its perfection in the Christian Gospel. Thus, the holy fathers of the Church taught that the yearnings of pagan religions and the wisdom of many philosophers are also capable of serving to prepare men for the doctrines of Jesus and are indeed valid and genuine ways to the one Truth of God.

In the final analysis, we don't know who is or isn't saved. We don't know what the outcome is for people of pagan faiths. Even as far as our own personal salvation goes, we rely on the mercy of God - and if we are incapable of judging our own salvation how much less can we speak of the salvation of others? God sees and understands much more than we could ever hope to see and understand and I would consider it very hazardous to ursurp His role as Judge and decide who is excluded from salvation.   

well spoken.
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« Reply #32 on: July 11, 2009, 02:40:30 AM »

Oops, for some unknown - and unexplainable - reason, I confused Baha'i with Mandaeism. Mandaeism considers Jesus an imposter. I beg pardon to all those who are near to the Baha'i faith: it was not my intention to offend anybody. I was just a little bit tired when I wrote that thing and exchanged the two religions GLOM
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« Reply #33 on: July 11, 2009, 07:43:01 AM »

Oops, for some unknown - and unexplainable - reason, I confused Baha'i with Mandaeism. Mandaeism considers Jesus an imposter. I beg pardon to all those who are near to the Baha'i faith: it was not my intention to offend anybody. I was just a little bit tired when I wrote that thing and exchanged the two religions GLOM

Ah.  That makes sense.  Wink

For anyone not familiar, Mandaeans are a sect in Iraq that believe that John the Baptist is the highest prophet and that Jesus corrupted John's teachings and, like Alexander said, have very gnostic tendencies.
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« Reply #34 on: July 11, 2009, 08:08:16 AM »

Yup, indeed... Still beg pardon for such an horrend mistake...
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« Reply #35 on: July 11, 2009, 10:20:47 AM »


Dear Riddikulus,

The Lord Himself talked directly to the jews, and called them to repentance, but they, far from listening, crucified Him and persecuted His people. Some jews, like Saul, listened and repented.

The warnings of the Lord against heretics are even stronger than the warnings against jews, and other pagans. See how few "christian leaders" call them Pope, Patriarch, Archbishop, Pastor, and the like, using the name of Christ in vain, manipulate the Scripture, and deny Christ, leading many to their destruction by the worshiping of a false christ, and the father of lies, in a very subtle way.

See the danger and perniciousness of heresies? See how caustic they are? Marx, observing the devastating effects of heretics, mistakenly labeled all religions as the opiate of people. Heresies are really like a drug, that puts people to sleep, closes their mind, and hardens their hearts.

Only the Word of God gives live, opens our understanding, warms our hearts and we really Love Him with all our might, hearts and souls (understanding included).

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« Reply #36 on: July 11, 2009, 10:35:37 AM »

See how few "christian leaders" call them Pope, Patriarch, Archbishop, Pastor, and the like, using the name of Christ in vain, manipulate the Scripture, and deny Christ, leading many to their destruction by the worshiping of a false christ, and the father of lies, in a very subtle way.

Dear IPC,

Like others have already said, you are making very serious accusations without naming the people whom you are accusing, and without presenting any objective evidence proving that your accusations are true. Please, either name the exact names and present the exact factual evidence, or refrain from making such grave accusations, because you are offending very many people when you do so.

Heorhij, mod. "Religious Topics" and your unworthy servant
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« Reply #37 on: July 11, 2009, 11:10:10 AM »

Dear George,

The Lord Himself in the bible calls heretics worst than pagans and His personal enemies, and in the whole bible we can read how the false teachers and the false doctrines, as well as pagans (the heathen) estrange themselves from the Saviour and will not be saved.

I wouldn't dare to state my personal opinion, or make any assumptions on this subject.

Thank you for your honest comment.





No it seems more like your own personal interpretations of scripture, which sounds like an assumption, that you alone have a red phone that connects directly to God himself.

Peace be with you

George
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« Reply #38 on: July 11, 2009, 11:42:51 AM »

.............Hello Commissioner Gordon, this is IPC. We need Batman! Break out the spotlight......... Grin
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« Reply #39 on: July 11, 2009, 08:06:56 PM »


Dear Riddikulus,

The Lord Himself talked directly to the jews, and called them to repentance, but they, far from listening, crucified Him and persecuted His people. Some jews, like Saul, listened and repented.

The warnings of the Lord against heretics are even stronger than the warnings against jews, and other pagans. See how few "christian leaders" call them Pope, Patriarch, Archbishop, Pastor, and the like, using the name of Christ in vain, manipulate the Scripture, and deny Christ, leading many to their destruction by the worshiping of a false christ, and the father of lies, in a very subtle way.

See the danger and perniciousness of heresies? See how caustic they are? Marx, observing the devastating effects of heretics, mistakenly labeled all religions as the opiate of people. Heresies are really like a drug, that puts people to sleep, closes their mind, and hardens their hearts.

Only the Word of God gives live, opens our understanding, warms our hearts and we really Love Him with all our might, hearts and souls (understanding included).

IPC,

I believe that a sin far greater than anything you have mentioned regarding heresy is a short memory. I'm sure, like the rest of us, you have been seeking God in what have turned out to be the wrong places; even if they have been wrong places that have led you to the Orthodox Church. Even if you have been Orthodox all you life, you have known error. To misunderstand is human. I have accepted the truth of Christ being my Saviour my entire life and still I have made mistakes and misunderstood many things along the long road that led me to the Church. And I'm a headstrong individual so, no doubt, I will continue to make mistakes; even with the guidance of the Church. If I were to rely on absolute "correct understanding" to save me, I would be without hope.

Of course, I understand the danger of heresy, but to be honest with you, I don't see this as being the greatest danger with regard to anyone's salvation. Don't get me wrong, I believe that correct doctrine is important, but so did the Jews of Christ's time and look where it led them. The sense that they were so right while the heathens surrounding them were so wrong bred pride, created enemies out of those they should have loved, made them insular and uncaring about the salvation of those they considered to be damned and beyond hope. I know they didn't start out to do any of this, their concern was for protecting themselves against all that was wrong, but there is that human tendancy to over-analyse for the sake of being absolutely *right*; a tendancy that runs amok with devastating consequences. We are fallible human beings who can't possibly be 100% correct all the time; even if we convince ourselves that we are. Even the most learned of us fails to fully understand the mind of God.

I believe that the greatest danger to one's salvation, one that ultimately has such a terrible affect on those around us, is the lack of love and empathy for the condition of our fellow creatures, our human brothers and sisters who are still struggling to find God in a mire of misinformation and alterative religions. I believe that as Christians we need to ask ourselves why so many people are choosing any alternative they can to the Orthodox Church; to the Christian faith. Why do some go so far from us as they can possibly get, to find their answers in Buddhism, Ba`hai, Wiccan or the multitude of other options they have available to them; why have so many rejected God altogether? What is it that we are doing wrong? What is it they see when they look at us? Do they hear, see, experience news of the Christ who was born, lived and died to reconcile them to God or do we use His truth as a weapon against them; condemning them in their ignorance out of our lack of love? Have we encouraged them to look deeper, or have we driven them away with our harsh condemnation of their ignorance; have we judged them more harshly than God has judged us? Have we made the same mistakes as the Jews? Have we forgotten where we came from, that we were once slaves and that it was Christ Who set us free; and has that freedom made us contemptuous of those who still struggle in ignorance towards God as we once struggled?

Forgive me for ranting, but we are to be known for our love and it seems that Christian history tells us that we have too often failed to love our fellow Christians, let alone those who don't believe in Christ. If we are to be known for our love for one another, don't we fail miserably when we harshly and publicly condemn those who don't see things exactly as we do. Is it any wonder that so many spiritual people don't consider Christianity as a viable option anymore? 

Please forgive me if I have given offence.
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« Reply #40 on: July 11, 2009, 08:58:38 PM »

Word. If I had never found "heretical" Rastafari, I would probably never have found Orthodoxy. Or to look at it the other way, the Lord Jesus used Rastafari and Haile Sellassie I to lead me to Him.
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« Reply #41 on: July 11, 2009, 11:38:11 PM »

Word. If I had never found "heretical" Rastafari, I would probably never have found Orthodoxy. Or to look at it the other way, the Lord Jesus used Rastafari and Haile Sellassie I to lead me to Him.

Exactly. We don't know where the *heretic's* path leads; any more than we do that of the *pagan*. C. S. Lewis made the observation that we Christians have commonalities with pagans, and that would fit with the quote from Fr Hopko that I quoted earlier. The pagan has awareness or knowledge of a divine being; they are on a journey that we shouldn't hinder. If they don't ask for our advise or opinions regarding their beliefs, it's better that we don't put the stumbling block of condemnation in their way, so that they are diverted from Christ because of they sense contempt and mockery; intentional or not. People don't respond well to uninvited criticism; they will too often respond by digging themselves further into their beliefs and discounting that of the rude and thoughtless aggressor. As St Paul said, we should be a cunning as serpents and gentle as doves. What business it is of ours to chide those who are outside the Church?
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« Reply #42 on: July 12, 2009, 12:34:10 AM »

As St Paul said, we should be a cunning as serpents and gentle as doves. What business it is of ours to chide those who are outside the Church?

Just a small point. Our Lord said the above, not St Paul (although St Paul had some very interesting things to say as well  Wink)
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« Reply #43 on: July 12, 2009, 03:11:25 AM »

As St Paul said, we should be a cunning as serpents and gentle as doves. What business it is of ours to chide those who are outside the Church?

Just a small point. Our Lord said the above, not St Paul (although St Paul had some very interesting things to say as well  Wink)

Diddly-darn, Douglas, of course you are quite right!! Embarrassed
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« Reply #44 on: July 12, 2009, 11:53:06 AM »



Diddly-darn, Douglas, of course you are quite right!! Embarrassed
Woo Hoo! First time in many years! I think I'll tell my wife that she owes me more respect now. (well... maybe not)  Wink
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