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Author Topic: Who should be proselytized first and with priority?  (Read 934 times) Average Rating: 0
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John The Ninja
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« on: April 18, 2011, 02:13:23 PM »

Hello everyone  Smiley

What do you think Christ and the Apostles would say?

Should a nonbeliever be converted to Christianity (regardless of the denomination), or should a Christian who is not part of the One True Church be converted?  Which one do you think they would say is more important?

Lets look at both situations.

A nonbeliever (lets just assume he is Hindu) could be brought into a religion that is True, however, he might not belong to the True Church.  If you look at all the denominations of Christianity, there is far more that unites us than divides us.  If the Hindu converted to the Catholic Church for example, he would accept a Church that has a lot of overlap of theology and traditions as the Orthodox Church.

If a Baptist (for example) were to convert to the Orthodox Church, the number of Christians in the world would not change, but there would be a new member to the Orthodox Church.  Should this take priority over the Hindu?  As a Baptist, he will share a lot of theology and beliefs, but he wouldn't be part of the True Church.

Which would the Apostles and Christ say is more important?  Should we increase the number of Christians, or should we work to unite Christianity?

Share your thoughts  angel
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« Reply #1 on: April 18, 2011, 02:15:05 PM »

Both are equally important because it's the same thing - receiving people into the Church.
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« Reply #2 on: April 18, 2011, 02:32:49 PM »

What benefit would one receive from a False Church? It's not like heterodoxy is "better" than heresy, Judaism, or paganism. They are all problematic for the soul. All have a little truth, but not the whole truth. Some may have the form of sacraments, but no grace. The Orthodox Church should and does reach out to all with the message of salvation, even to her own members, who are also in need of truth and grace and salvation.
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« Reply #3 on: April 18, 2011, 03:27:45 PM »

Well, there is something to be said for Christians who are more similar to each other being united generating a greater cause of witness. For instance, if all episcopal churches (OO, EO, Nestorian, Romanist, Anglican, etc.) were to become united, I think the Church would have a greater reputation and witness of being the one and only Episcopal Church.
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« Reply #4 on: April 18, 2011, 03:37:15 PM »

I would promote Orthodox Christianity to Americans, both heterodox and secular, first. Secularism is killing western society. Already, secular inroads have all but destroyed the Episcopal church in the US. Actively gay priests? Give me a break. The Lutherans and Methodists are falling apart. The Catholics--where to begin? Half of them are cafeteria Catholics. Right now, the Orthodox Church is the only bastion of true Christian doctrine left. If we want America to stay Christian, we should start here.
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« Reply #5 on: April 18, 2011, 04:47:40 PM »

Didn't a wise man once say "there is neither Jew nor Greek?"

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« Reply #6 on: April 18, 2011, 04:50:40 PM »

Well, there is something to be said for Christians who are more similar to each other being united generating a greater cause of witness. For instance, if all episcopal churches (OO, EO, Nestorian, Romanist, Anglican, etc.) were to become united, I think the Church would have a greater reputation and witness of being the one and only Episcopal Church.

Completely agree.  Neither of us are particularly sympathetic to ecumenism in many of its forms, but certain steps of unity among the groups you listed would be remarkable.  It's quite easy for people to dismiss belief in a "True Church" when so many episcopal bodies claim it exclusively.

I would promote Orthodox Christianity to Americans, both heterodox and secular, first. Secularism is killing western society...

Agreed again.  The U.S. and Americans are tremendously influential.  It seemed important for the early church to target influential places, i.e. Rome, for evangelism; why not America?  Britain and Western Europe certainly need a kick-start though.
Secularism/Materialism is killing Western society and, like you noted, it infects not only the secular, but the religious as well.  

Now someone write something I don't agree with, so I can argue.  Smiley
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« Reply #7 on: April 18, 2011, 05:01:12 PM »

Well, there is something to be said for Christians who are more similar to each other being united generating a greater cause of witness. For instance, if all episcopal churches (OO, EO, Nestorian, Romanist, Anglican, etc.) were to become united, I think the Church would have a greater reputation and witness of being the one and only Episcopal Church.
Or it would all be diluted to the ill repute and false witness of the Episcopalians.
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« Reply #8 on: April 18, 2011, 05:02:13 PM »

I think our job is to let the light of Christ shine everywhere we possibly can without discrimination or prioritization.

According to St Paul, we are even supposed "consider one another to provoke unto love and to good works".
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« Reply #9 on: April 18, 2011, 05:14:23 PM »

Well, there is something to be said for Christians who are more similar to each other being united generating a greater cause of witness. For instance, if all episcopal churches (OO, EO, Nestorian, Romanist, Anglican, etc.) were to become united, I think the Church would have a greater reputation and witness of being the one and only Episcopal Church.
Or it would all be diluted to the ill repute and false witness of the Episcopalians.

Also true and a very real barrier.
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« Reply #10 on: April 18, 2011, 05:38:10 PM »

Hello everyone  Smiley

What do you think Christ and the Apostles would say?

Should a nonbeliever be converted to Christianity (regardless of the denomination), or should a Christian who is not part of the One True Church be converted?  Which one do you think they would say is more important?

Lets look at both situations.

A nonbeliever (lets just assume he is Hindu) could be brought into a religion that is True, however, he might not belong to the True Church.  If you look at all the denominations of Christianity, there is far more that unites us than divides us.  If the Hindu converted to the Catholic Church for example, he would accept a Church that has a lot of overlap of theology and traditions as the Orthodox Church.

If a Baptist (for example) were to convert to the Orthodox Church, the number of Christians in the world would not change, but there would be a new member to the Orthodox Church.  Should this take priority over the Hindu?  As a Baptist, he will share a lot of theology and beliefs, but he wouldn't be part of the True Church.

Which would the Apostles and Christ say is more important?  Should we increase the number of Christians, or should we work to unite Christianity?

Share your thoughts  angel
It would be very easy to convince the Hindu that he should be born again. And the Baptist would not partake of the Eucharist (because of the alcohol content). The Hindu wins, hands down.
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« Reply #11 on: April 18, 2011, 05:38:33 PM »

Christ said to "love thy neighbor" and to preach the Gospel "to all nations." To me, this means that we are to be a witness to all at all times without worrying about "priority." ALL are in need of the love and saving grace of Christ and His Church. Everyone; without discretion.
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« Reply #12 on: April 18, 2011, 05:47:53 PM »

Well, there is something to be said for Christians who are more similar to each other being united generating a greater cause of witness. For instance, if all episcopal churches (OO, EO, Nestorian, Romanist, Anglican, etc.) were to become united, I think the Church would have a greater reputation and witness of being the one and only Episcopal Church.
Or it would all be diluted to the ill repute and false witness of the Episcopalians.

I don't see how that would be possible.
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« Reply #13 on: April 18, 2011, 07:07:42 PM »

Well, there is something to be said for Christians who are more similar to each other being united generating a greater cause of witness. For instance, if all episcopal churches (OO, EO, Nestorian, Romanist, Anglican, etc.) were to become united, I think the Church would have a greater reputation and witness of being the one and only Episcopal Church.
Or it would all be diluted to the ill repute and false witness of the Episcopalians.
Keep in mind that the majority of the world's Anglicans (ie in the Global South) are not liberals like most (not all) of the remaining Episcopalians, and in North American there is the new Anglican Church in North America (which is already recognized by several African provinces) and the older Continuing Anglican Churches.  Worldwide Anglicanism is in flux, and it will be interesting to see how things shake out over the next several years in terms of global alignment.

Didn't mean to side track the thread.   Grin
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« Reply #14 on: April 18, 2011, 07:12:15 PM »

Well, there is something to be said for Christians who are more similar to each other being united generating a greater cause of witness. For instance, if all episcopal churches (OO, EO, Nestorian, Romanist, Anglican, etc.) were to become united, I think the Church would have a greater reputation and witness of being the one and only Episcopal Church.
Or it would all be diluted to the ill repute and false witness of the Episcopalians.
Keep in mind that the majority of the world's Anglicans (ie in the Global South) are not liberals like most (not all) of the remaining Episcopalians, and in North American there is the new Anglican Church in North America (which is already recognized by several African provinces) and the older Continuing Anglican Churches.  Worldwide Anglicanism is in flux, and it will be interesting to see how things shake out over the next several years in terms of global alignment.

Didn't mean to side track the thread.   Grin
Good point. The Anglicans should be proselytized first.
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« Reply #15 on: April 18, 2011, 07:15:14 PM »

Well, there is something to be said for Christians who are more similar to each other being united generating a greater cause of witness. For instance, if all episcopal churches (OO, EO, Nestorian, Romanist, Anglican, etc.) were to become united, I think the Church would have a greater reputation and witness of being the one and only Episcopal Church.
Or it would all be diluted to the ill repute and false witness of the Episcopalians.
Keep in mind that the majority of the world's Anglicans (ie in the Global South) are not liberals like most (not all) of the remaining Episcopalians, and in North American there is the new Anglican Church in North America (which is already recognized by several African provinces) and the older Continuing Anglican Churches.  Worldwide Anglicanism is in flux, and it will be interesting to see how things shake out over the next several years in terms of global alignment.

Didn't mean to side track the thread.   Grin
Good point. The Anglicans should be proselytized first.
Ha, Ha.  laugh
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« Reply #16 on: April 18, 2011, 07:48:59 PM »

If a Baptist (for example) were to convert to the Orthodox Church, the number of Christians in the world would not change, but there would be a new member to the Orthodox Church.  Should this take priority over the Hindu?  As a Baptist, he will share a lot of theology and beliefs, but he wouldn't be part of the True Church.

Just speaking for myself, what I found in the Eastern religions drew me closer to Orthodoxy than anything I knew (thought I knew?) about the Western confessions of Christianity ever did.

I worry as much about the salvation of five-point Calvinists as I do sincere Buddhists, if not more so.
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