Like Muhammad? ... Would you include Mormonism within the Faith? ... ... the Orthodox Church was, as she is now, the world-wide Church.
Cleopas ... do you consider him a coreligionist?
With due respect, your first two comments are fatuous.
Not at all.
You know as well as I do that neither the Orthodox Church nor Baptists regard Mohammed and Mormons as somehow "in Christ".
I've seen you say things to that effect, but I have no idea what weight that carries. You have hundreds of thousands, perhaps millions, of Baptist parishes/congregations across the globe. I have no idea how much your ideas about Muhammad and the Mormons or anything else for that matter (as you state "in re Cleopas - yes, of course; I am not aware of a gap between our ideas in our posts into which a hair might be pushed. We do not collude: we simply believe the same things. (Though I doubt not for a moment that, if we sat down together and shared our beliefs in harmonious fraternity for an hour or two, we'd find there is variety between us: that is commonly the experience between any two Evangelicals whose faith is not swallowed in its entirety second-hand.)" Curious: what do you swallow second hand?
). Some Baptists ordain (appoint,..whatever. I don't recall or know what you, or some of you, call it) women, others don't. I enjoyed watching the conservative Baptists in the Southern Baptist Convention fight off those wanting to ordain women: how soon sola scriptura was abandoned! Some Baptist celebrate Passover (but won't celebrate Pascha), others don't. Some have have taken the adoption of the Masoretic text and the rejection of Apostolic Tradition to its logical conclusion, and have placed themselves under the tutelage of the rabbis, forming the B'nei Noach, Gentiles for Judaism, rejecting the Incarnation and Trinity as they rejected the saints and icons. I don't know if they still consider themselves Baptist, but they do recruit among the Baptists. I've warned some, but what do I know? I'm a deluded Orthodox.
I don't know if you have met with Muslims who insist that they are the True Christians, but they exist in great numbers, and eagerly adopt as their own Radical Protestant tracts about the "Great Apostacy" and the corruption of the Church: after all, the Quran says the same thing. They claim hisotrical continuity with Christ's "pure gospel," which am I sure you will deny them, but since historical continuity isn't seen as a vital criteria, so what? It has not proved a problem for many Baptists who have embraced Islam: all their testimonials speak that their first steps towards Muhammad was the insistence in their Baptist days to find the pure doctrine of Jesus (upon him peace!) by prying off the "accretions the Institutional Church made." The NT ended up being just another of those accretions.
And of course, the link is even easier for the Mormons. They come from the same milieu as the Radical Reformation, restorationism, etc., clear in their book of Mormon. You may protest that they follow another Gospel, but they also claim Galatians and scripture, and needless to say interpret St. Paul differently than you do. How can you say that your interpretation is correct, and theirs is not?
Your third point is near the fulcrum of the debate:
All the points accumulate at the fulcrum.
you all start from the premise that there is, somewhere on earth, one Church organisation which is the true church; we start with the premise that the Church, sadly, is divided in numerous branches, with variety on some points of belief and practice. You argue from your premise - your starting point - to the conclusion that the Orthodox Church is the one true church, an argument largely based on historical continuity (which I have no problem in recognising: you have that continuity, at least in parts of the ancient world where the church survived Moslem domination).
Indeed, that brings us back to the OP:
Whatever happened to the Greek speaking churches in Antioch, Greece, Jerusalem, and in Alexandria?
most protestants can't answer me on this, the best answer I can get is orthodoxy.
We are still around, as the Romans and Muslims found us.
But you reach a conclusion which, from our viewpoint, must be fallacious, as we don't think there is such a thing anyway. You write as if we were debating which church is the true one; we don't even commence such a discussion, as (like you) we think we know the conclusion beforehand.
The promise was that Christ would build His Church (singular,not plural), and the gates of hell would not prevail. As St. Paul would ask: is Christ divided? Does He keep a harem, or does He have one bride? "I appeal to you, brothers, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that all of you agree with one another so that there may be no divisions among you and that you may be perfectly united in mind and thought." Either the gates of hell have prevailed, in which case we can discount any promise of Christ, or there is one with which He has been "always (lit.all of the days) even until the end of the world."