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Author Topic: Exhausting Evangelicals  (Read 8411 times) Average Rating: 0
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Carl Kraeff (Second Chance)
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« Reply #90 on: May 21, 2010, 11:04:34 AM »

I am ‘cradle’ Orthodox and for most of my life didn’t go to church at all. I know next to nothing about Evangelicals but I have some Evangelical friends who are interested in Orthodoxy but the big sticking point for one of them in particular is the concept of ‘the’ Church.  She has rejected a lot of Protestant theology and the happy-clappy worship but rejects Orthodoxy because it excludes genuine, sincere, yada yada yada Christians who are not members of it. She is irked by the prayers in the services for the Orthodox and says that we should pray for the Evangelicals and the Pope etc. I have no answer for this as I don’t have any background into how she thinks. How would people here from Evangelical backgrounds approach this? One priest said to her “we know where the church is but not where it isn’t” but that wasn’t enough.

I am sorry to say I find this endlessly exasperating and I don’t know if she is just looking for excuses not to become Orthodox and when I talk to her about it she says that before she can join a church everything has to be right according to her conscience and she always says that anyone who says ‘Jesus is Lord’ is a Christian and should be acknowledged as one by the Orthodox church.

Sorry if I have posted in the wrong thread, it just made me think of my friend.

Nina


Christ is risen!

Hi Nina,

A fish fights the hardest after it has been hooked and is getting closer to being hauled into the boat. It may be that your friend is indeed hooked, Do not give up and let her go.

BTW, in my experience evangelicals respect the Bible more than anything else. In fact, sometimes to the exclusion of everything else. No matter, there is sufficient "ammunition" in the Holy Scriptures to make an argument for joining the Church. First, most evangelicals do not stress a fundamental teaching of Jesus regarding Holy Communion and thus are surprised by it. Yet, they cannot wiggle away from this teaching and still respect the Bible as the Word of God. Read with them the following passages and ask them to think about which Church actually puts this teaching into practice without overly simplifying or overly complicating it.

The Lord instituted the Holy Eucharist

Matthew 26: 26 And as they were eating, Jesus took bread, blessed and broke it, and gave it  to the disciples and said, “Take, eat; this is My body.”
27 Then He took the cup, and gave thanks, and gave it to them, saying, “Drink from it, all of you. 28 For this is My blood of the new covenant, which is shed for many for the remission of sins."

Mark 14: 22 And as they were eating, Jesus took bread, blessed and broke it, and gave it  to them and said, “Take, eat; this is My body.” 23 Then He took the cup, and when He had given thanks He gave it to them, and they all drank from it. 24 And He said to them, “This is My blood of the new covenant, which is shed for many."

Luke 22: 19 And He took bread, gave thanks and broke it, and gave it to them, saying, “This is My body which is given for you; do this in remembrance of Me.” 20 Likewise He also took the cup after supper, saying, “This cup is the new covenant in My blood, which is shed for you."

The Lord made the Holy Eucharist the fundamental mystery, a life-or-death proposition

John 6: "53 Then Jesus said to them, “Most assuredly, I say to you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink His blood, you have no life in you. 54 Whoever eats My flesh and drinks My blood has eternal life, and I will raise him up at the last day. 55 For My flesh is food indeed, and My blood is drink indeed. 56 He who eats My flesh and drinks My blood abides in Me, and I in him. 57 As the living Father sent Me, and I live because of the Father, so he who feeds on Me will live because of Me. 58 This is the bread which came down from heaven—not as your fathers ate the manna, and are dead. He who eats this bread will live forever.”
« Last Edit: May 21, 2010, 11:05:46 AM by Second Chance » Logged

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David Young
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« Reply #91 on: May 21, 2010, 04:05:09 PM »

I have some Evangelical friends who are interested in Orthodoxy but the big sticking point for one of them in particular is the concept of ‘the’ Church. ... I don’t know if she is just looking for excuses not to become Orthodox

I can't of course be specific about your particular friend, but (as I have often written on these threads) the concept of "the only true church" is indeed an alien one to us, and has no place in our world-view. We know the Catholics claim that, but we tend to be bemused and perhaps amused at the notion. It probably really is a genuine obstacle to your friend's acceptance of Orthodoxy.

You may have heard of the probably fictitious ltitle girl who proudly learnt all her 12x tables (from 1x1=1 to 12x12=144) and thought she knew all there was to know. When her grandfather asked her what 13x13 made, she looked puzzled for a while, and then said, "Don't be silly, Grandad: there's no such thing." It was outside her view of the surrounding world. So it is with us and the concept of any organisation being the only true church.

I can't of course advise you how to proceed with your friend, as I also find it a totally alien notion.
« Last Edit: May 21, 2010, 04:07:39 PM by David Young » Logged

"But if you bite and devour one another, take heed that you are not consumed by one another." Galatians 5.15
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« Reply #92 on: May 21, 2010, 04:14:56 PM »

I can't of course advise you how to proceed with your friend, as I also find it a totally alien notion.
Regardless of whether or not it's "alien", what if it is the truth?
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David Young
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« Reply #93 on: May 21, 2010, 04:15:21 PM »

She probably objects to being refused Communion. Try this line (choose the part that fits): If you don't agree with what the Orthodox Church teaches, why would you want to commune with us?

That line wouldn't "cut any ice" at all. We take Communion with each other - speaking of the human, 'horizontal' dimension of the sacrament rather than the Godward one for a moment - because we believe we are one in Christ, and the one bread/one body motif is at work in that. We don't break bread together because we mentally agree on all points of doctrine. When I worshipped on holiday recently at an Anglican church, I quietly asked the vicar beforehand, "We're Baptists: may we take Communion?" and was made most welcome. We see things differently, and your suggested answer would be answering a question the friend is not asking: it would be what I believe is delightfully called Aneinandervorbeireden - talking past each other.
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« Reply #94 on: May 21, 2010, 04:16:41 PM »

I can't of course advise you how to proceed with your friend, as I also find it a totally alien notion.
Regardless of whether or not it's "alien", what if it is the truth?

Then we are lost, and you only are saved.
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David Young
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« Reply #95 on: May 21, 2010, 04:19:42 PM »

she'd be way better as a Baptist than the way she is now.

Amen to that!
 Wink
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« Reply #96 on: May 21, 2010, 04:19:52 PM »

I can't of course advise you how to proceed with your friend, as I also find it a totally alien notion.
Regardless of whether or not it's "alien", what if it is the truth?

Then we are lost, and you only are saved.
Did anyone say that?
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