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Author Topic: How would you move forward??  (Read 1498 times) Average Rating: 5
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« on: June 07, 2011, 10:40:43 AM »

As i said before i have been looking at Christianity since last October and more pacifically Orthodoxy in the last few months. Most of my information has come off a mainly protestant forum premiercommunity.org.uk/forum (MissP) which i still like because when there are argument against Orthodoxy i like to know about them and see if they stand up or not. Most of them don't i seen so far.

But the things is, even though i have settled my mind on some of the issues like what the church is and the Eucharist and why they're necessary and who Jesus is and Mary and all that stuff and even though i feel like i can fit into a church life somewhere now (which i didn't feel that way before) i have a huge stumble block on the fact that i know who i am and i know how i am and some of the things that i think and do that i would have to stop are so attached to who i am i can't see me lasting for very long before i get kicked out lolOl I'm not laughing because i find it funny but because i think its true!!!!

I know you will tell me about all the people in the bible who made so many big mistakes and God still bothered with them and you will probably tell me Paul and maybe even yourself and the errors you have done BUT i know whats ingrained in me and why its there to keep me protected from mongs and people who take you for a idiot. Which i don't put up with. That's only a small example but others would be that i do judge people I DO and I'm not sorry i do that because i dint mind if i get judged....bring it on and if you pull me up on something legit then i will apologise but i can't see how i can NOT be like that because its a fundamental belief in me. Another one would be that i DO get back at people.... if a wrong is done to me I DO repay it because there is no self respect if i don't.

I know it probably sounds a shocker to admit this right out but this is my huge stopper because i like who i am and i don't want to change any of that because it has worked for me. But i know it's not com patable with God.

My Orthodox friend said that people change over time gradually and that they become more like themselves when these things change but i know how stubborn i am.... not just for the sake of it but because its my beliefs and attached to MY code which is strong and part of who i am.

IF i knew i was like this AND was re pentent of it but kept falling.... then i could see a way forward but that's not the case. I am not re pentent of any of it.

« Last Edit: June 07, 2011, 10:41:13 AM by Poppy » Logged
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« Reply #1 on: June 07, 2011, 12:03:40 PM »

You yourself admit that your ways are not compatible with God.  Now you have a choice to make.  You can elect to continue what you are doing, knowing that you are going against the will of God, not caring that you are going against the will of God.  You can continue to do whatever feels good to you.  Or, you can accept that God is the One Who created you, that God is Master of the Universe, Judge of the World, Physician of the Soul, Redeemer, Creator, Designer, the Only Holy One, and that his will for your life and for my life and for everyone else's life is what is best.  We can know this because God, unlike us, is not constrained by space and time.  He exists outside of time and so yesterday is for Him as today is, and today is for Him as tomorrow is.  He knows what has been, what is, and what will be, and so He knows what each and every possible action we can choose will lead to. 

Your choice is simple: You can decide that you are wiser than anyone else, that you know what is best for you, and that the sins you commit today will never be your condemnation at some point in the future, even after death; or you can decide that God is wiser than you, that His will for your life is best for you, and that through Him, your sins can be wiped away and you can be as pure as snow.
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« Reply #2 on: June 07, 2011, 12:50:22 PM »

...i don't want to change...

Well, you've pretty much answered your own question.

When you commit to a religion, you also commit to internal change. Otherwise, there's no point; you can stay the way you are and spare yourself all the trouble. If you join a church intending to stay as you are, then you're just joining a social club, not a faith. What's the point?

You join the church because, in the main, you are seeking to be closer to God and to grow into a much better, and more godly, human being. If you're content with who you are, you're not really going to be motivated to do what must be done in order to be a good Christian, are you?

No form of Christianity calls for as much personal change, sacrifice, and internal transformation as Orthodoxy. It is a very serious faith--much more so than practically every other tradition of Christianity. The whole point of Orthodoxy is to leave the old man behind. It's highly ascetical: we fast much of the year; we pray several times a day; we spend about 10 hours a week in church most weeks and three times that during the Paschal season.

In order to do this, you must love God more than you love yourself. Obviously, God is working in some way to bring you into the church, otherwise you wouldn't be actively seeking Him. But much work remains to be done.

Pray hard for God to give you discernment about your way forward.
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« Reply #3 on: June 07, 2011, 01:17:44 PM »

Quote
No form of Christianity calls for as much personal change, sacrifice, and internal transformation as Orthodoxy. It is a very serious faith--much more so than practically every other tradition of Christianity.
I know thats why i like it more. Im no flake and when i put myself to something i work hard.

I DO care James. Its not that i don't care it just that i know how it goes.
Thanks anyways both you.
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« Reply #4 on: June 07, 2011, 01:26:28 PM »

But if you do care, then why do you not want to change?  Why are you so contented with yourself?  If you recognize that God wants you to change, and you think that He is wiser then you and has a better plan for your life than you could ever imagine, why do you not want to change?

I can perfectly well understand if you don't think you can, if you don't know that you can put forth the effort to change, but I don't understand how you wouldn't want to change if the above is true.
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« Reply #5 on: June 07, 2011, 01:38:49 PM »

With Orthodoxy, it isn't just about you "putting your shoulder to the wheel." It's about acknowledging that we can only change with God's help, Jesus' sacrifice, and the presence of the Holy Spirit.

The change rings hollow unless it is infused with the living breath of God. I was able to eliminate many of my addictions, but soon after becoming a catechumen, I found myself indulging in them and breaking apart with a single touch. It's as if I never defeated them. We NEED God to continue to live a holy life. It is not a mission we undertake ourselves.


Repentance for our sins is essential to our faith. I don't want to sound harsh, but if you can't see that, then that is a very significant obstacle to Orthodoxy. We (I'm talking about Christianity in general) believe in sin. There is no changing that. We aren't about being "better people" in the sense that humanists are. We are about overcoming sin, triumphing over it, because Jesus did. We want eternal life, and our whole being and soul has to be transformed in His image in order to attain theosis, oneness with God.
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« Reply #6 on: June 07, 2011, 01:58:37 PM »

But if you do care, then why do you not want to change?  Why are you so contented with yourself?  If you recognize that God wants you to change, and you think that He is wiser then you and has a better plan for your life than you could ever imagine, why do you not want to change?

I can perfectly well understand if you don't think you can, if you don't know that you can put forth the effort to change, but I don't understand how you wouldn't want to change if the above is true.

I don't think i would go so far to say i'm contented but that how life works for me so far.
I don't think i have confidence in the me that God wants....... is a me i will even like or be able to live with.
God.... to me.... is just a "bloke" with a whole lot of power and not someone who i feel anything about.
Lastly i don't think i know what sins are exactly and why they are sins. Things have to make logigal sense to me and if i understand something and it makes more sense then the "want" will be there and sins to me....just seem like arbitary rules..... that's all i can think of to answer your q. I spent 13 years under the system of the goverment in charge of me.... im going to be wary of another system where someone else is in charge of me..... right now i am FREE!!!

______________________________________

Thanks ismiliora..... i can repent about some things.... i think i will go look at what sins are and why they are sins. That might be a good thing.
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« Reply #7 on: June 07, 2011, 02:01:30 PM »

So Poppy, it seems like, from your post, these are the things you don't think you can change/don't want to change:

1. Discerning people's motives
2. Judging others
3. Taking revenge

Am I correct?
« Last Edit: June 07, 2011, 02:02:22 PM by NicholasMyra » Logged

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« Reply #8 on: June 07, 2011, 02:05:18 PM »

yeah.... some examples but yeah
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« Reply #9 on: June 07, 2011, 02:14:57 PM »

yeah.... some examples but yeah
Well, first off, I don't think there's anything sinful about discernment. If you're walking down the street at night and see a dangerous group of people on your path, it isn't sinful to take the long way home instead.

Judging people, however, often means that you condemn them or decide who they are deep down. You're essentially trying to take God's place in the universe the same way that Satan tried to. In fact, the word "Satan" means "Adversary" or "Prosecutor". So, if God's just a bloke to you, why do you want his seat of power?   Wink

As for Vengeance, I know that everywhere from the corporate world, to prison, to childrens' schoolyards, to wars between nations, vengeance is a powerful sensation. Vengeance is a cathartic high, like a drug, that makes you feel energized and better after a bad experience. It can be used to show dominance and authority.

A few years ago, a young woman in the Middle East was stoned to death by a crowd of smiling young boys who filmed the event with their cell phone cameras. They did it because the woman was accused of trying to marry a man from a different religion (They were Yazdis). To them, this was an act worthy of vengeance and an exciting opportunity to experience all the highs and emotional revelry of  revenge. And whenever you or I take revenge, we are participating in the same spirit that those young boys did.

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« Reply #10 on: June 07, 2011, 02:32:20 PM »

yeah.... some examples but yeah
Well, first off, I don't think there's anything sinful about discernment. If you're walking down the street at night and see a dangerous group of people on your path, it isn't sinful to take the long way home instead.

Judging people, however, often means that you condemn them or decide who they are deep down. You're essentially trying to take God's place in the universe the same way that Satan tried to. In fact, the word "Satan" means "Adversary" or "Prosecutor". So, if God's just a bloke to you, why do you want his seat of power?   Wink

IDK!!! I can only answer you like this. If i was married and i dont plan on it but if i was and i loved someone and they were like "please don't do that i don't like it and it upsets me when you do it" then i would stop. (A) because i loved them and (B) because of trust NOT that i would trust them but that i would know them well enough to be able to trust myself in that situation. God is just unknowable AND unpredictable AND uncontrolable.... thats the only answer i have got.

Quote
As for Vengeance, I know that everywhere from the corporate world, to prison, to childrens' schoolyards, to wars between nations, vengeance is a powerful sensation. Vengeance is a cathartic high, like a drug, that makes you feel energized and better after a bad experience. It can be used to show dominance and authority.

A few years ago, a young woman in the Middle East was stoned to death by a crowd of smiling young boys who filmed the event with their cell phone cameras. They did it because the woman was accused of trying to marry a man from a different religion (They were Yazdis). To them, this was an act worthy of vengeance and an exciting opportunity to experience all the highs and emotional revelry of  revenge. And whenever you or I take revenge, we are participating in the same spirit that those young boys did.
Yeah someone had a quote that i asked to copy that was about outrage.... that it was a luxury and like narcotics it was addictive. That did make me think but not enough to make me have any epiphany about it. I do understand what your saying but i don't see that it is the same. Vengence isn't enjoyable but i think it is necessary. Does America defend itself does it attack other nations when they are under threat?? sure and so why shouldn't people do that or they will be treated like fools. How can it be justified in one place and not in another??? Does any Orthodox ppl have a problem with their kid going to war to fight for there country??? Nope probably not so if someone disrespects you why wouldnt you put them in there place??? So we should all live like the Amish and not defend anything?? Along with myself i also would and DO jump in and defend others if they are being disrespected or there is a hater having a go at them and it looks uneven or things like that.... would you stand by and ignore it??? I don't. If you would defend others and sort someone out that was being attacked then why would you do that in one situation and not another. I don't get that.
« Last Edit: June 07, 2011, 02:35:51 PM by Poppy » Logged
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« Reply #11 on: June 07, 2011, 02:41:21 PM »

IDK!!! I can only answer you like this. If i was married and i dont plan on it but if i was and i loved someone and they were like "please don't do that i don't like it and it upsets me when you do it" then i would stop. (A) because i loved them and (B) because of trust NOT that i would trust them but that i would know them well enough to be able to trust myself in that situation. God is just unknowable AND unpredictable AND uncontrolable.... thats the only answer i have got.
Well, I think that like any relationship or union, union/relationship with God takes time. It takes time and effort for it to matter to you, just like it takes time and effort to form a marriage. So there's nothing "wrong" with you because sinning doesn't make you feel like you're betraying someone. It took me a while to get to the stage where it did. and I still sin in many areas without feeling a sense of remorse, because I have so desensitized myself. But that desensitization doesn't reflect reality. If you keep at it, then you will develop a relationship and union with God.

I think Orthonorm posted this. It is a guide of real, understandable things you can do to begin building such a relationship. They aren't rules like a book of law, they're more like an athletic training regimen:
http://dangreeson.tumblr.com/post/31558579/fr-thomas-hopkos-55-maxims-for-christian-living

Yeah someone had a quote that i asked to copy that was about outrage.... that it was a luxury and like narcotics it was addictive. That did make me think but not enough to make me have any epiphany about it. I do understand what your saying but i don't see that it is the same. Vengence isn't enjoyable but i think it is necessary. Does America defend itself does it attack other nations when they are under threat?? sure and so why shouldn't people do that or they will be treated like fools. How can it be justified in one place and not in another??? Does any Orthodox ppl have a problem with their kid going to war to fight for there country??? Nope probably not so if someone disrespects you why wouldnt you put them in there place??? So we should all live like the Amish and not defend anything?? Along with myself i also would and DO jump in and defend others if they are being disrespected or there is a hater having a go at them and it looks uneven or things like that.... would you stand by and ignore it??? I don't. If you would defend others and sort someone out that was being attacked then why would you do that in one situation and not another. I don't get that.
Defending the innocent and weak is not the same thing as revenge. Revenge is the desire to get even to satisfy a primal sense of entitlement, and defense is the warding off of an attack. Even though killing is always an ontologically damaging act, one cannot equivocate defense and vengeance.

It's also righteous to stand up in defense of the innocent without violence. When your friend is getting hate or when an injustice is occuring, you should "speak the truth in love" and defend him/her.
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« Reply #12 on: June 07, 2011, 02:45:52 PM »

Ok hold the bus!!! lolOl i just saw your answer to me on another thread and i remembered something that J.M.C told me

Its the image of God in people is why its necessary to not get back at them because God created them and your respecting his image in them.
thanks
honestly i think i am going to have to go round the friken tree a hundred times before this stuff sinks in to MY THICK HEAD.... meh
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« Reply #13 on: June 07, 2011, 02:54:18 PM »

Ok hold the bus!!! lolOl i just saw your answer to me on another thread and i remembered something that J.M.C told me

Its the image of God in people is why its necessary to not get back at them because God created them and your respecting his image in them.
thanks
honestly i think i am going to have to go round the friken tree a hundred times before this stuff sinks in to MY THICK HEAD.... meh
That certainly is a reason. In fact, during the Divine Liturgy, the deacon or priest censes the people because they are living icons.
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« Reply #14 on: June 07, 2011, 03:03:31 PM »

Greetings in that Divine and Most Precious Name of Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ!

Jesus Christ did not call the just to repentance, but the sinners.  He accepts us as we are, and whats even more miraculous, is that He changes us to what He needs us to be, but perfectly synchronized with our real selves.  We wear a dozen personalities and sometimes we even fool ourselves, but Jesus Christ knows the real us, and He brings the real us into our reality through the Divine Mysteries, particularly Reconciliation and Holy Communion.  

As to who I was before Orthodox, I plead the..



However, that being said, I can assure you that Orthodox changes you for the better, you will find a better you, the real you, that was buried behind all those other yous before. Without pulling too many of my covers on this one, if I troublemaker like me could become Orthodox, anyone can Wink The only reality is Jesus Christ, and where we can find Him in that realist sense is in the Orthodox Church which is His own.  Protestant churches are synagogues, places of singing and reading, but the Church is the Temple, that seat of the Godhead where we worship. Don't be scared, let God take you where He will.  You can still be yourself, inch into it, steadily, day by day.  Don't dive in and drown and get resentful, take it to your own pace.  

Besides, you never know when the Light might just knock you off your horse like it does to all of us from time to time..



stay blessed,
habte selassie
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« Reply #15 on: June 08, 2011, 07:54:38 AM »

NicholasMyra (or anyone)
So does absolutely everyone have the image of God in them?? Even the most wicked of people?? And is there a cause int he bible to hate what God hates??? And also there are people who God rejected or who God withdraws his spirit from.

Another one while im here.... is there pacific people who belong to God before they realise it....and conversely is there people who will never belong to God right from their birth?? I'm not talking about those who God knows won't ever turn his way... i'm talking about those who he has made it that way that they are not his.

Thanks Poppy

ps thanks for helping me out i rli appreciate it
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« Reply #16 on: June 08, 2011, 08:13:52 AM »

So does absolutely everyone have the image of God in them??

Yes.

Quote
Even the most wicked of people??

Yes.

Quote
And is there a cause int he bible to hate what God hates???

Can you give any examples of where we are instructed to hate anything that anyone might be able to respond to?

Quote
And also there are people who God rejected or who God withdraws his spirit from.

Those are individuals that have chosen to set themselves against God.

Quote
Another one while im here.... is there pacific people who belong to God before they realise it....and conversely is there people who will never belong to God right from their birth?? I'm not talking about those who God knows won't ever turn his way... i'm talking about those who he has made it that way that they are not his.

Thanks Poppy

No.
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« Reply #17 on: June 08, 2011, 10:40:50 AM »


Can you give any examples of where we are instructed to hate anything that anyone might be able to respond to?

proverbs 6 16 - 19 ......seven things he hates
jeremiah 44 2-5 ....he hates them that have other Gods
deu 12...29-31 ......evil hearts against his neighbour and false oaths
zech 8...16 - 17
heb 1... 8-9
psalms 5..5
psalms 11...5 hates the wicked and them that love violence
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« Reply #18 on: June 08, 2011, 11:17:59 AM »

Another one while im here.... is there pacific people who belong to God before they realise it....and conversely is there people who will never belong to God right from their birth?? I'm not talking about those who God knows won't ever turn his way... i'm talking about those who he has made it that way that they are not his.
Nope.

NicholasMyra (or anyone)
So does absolutely everyone have the image of God in them?? Even the most wicked of people??
Yeah. You see, there's are two things. God's image, and God's likeness. When Adam fell, he retained God's image, but lost God's likeness. By losing that likeness, he fell into corruption and death. Wicked people have distorted the image of God in themselves, chosen to move away from his likeness, but still retain His Image.


Can you give any examples of where we are instructed to hate anything that anyone might be able to respond to?

proverbs 6 16 - 19 ......seven things he hates
jeremiah 44 2-5 ....he hates them that have other Gods
deu 12...29-31 ......evil hearts against his neighbour and false oaths
zech 8...16 - 17
heb 1... 8-9
psalms 5..5
psalms 11...5 hates the wicked and them that love violence


When it says "God hates" this is understood as an anthropomorphic non-literal statement. God is also said to "stretch forth his hand" but we know that the Father does not have a hand, and the reference to a hand often refers to the Son and/or Spirit. Did a Calvinist on your protestant forum give you this list?
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« Reply #19 on: June 08, 2011, 11:44:37 AM »

no i just googled to see if there was anything God hates and that list came up.

Image... likeness.... ok got that.
Thanks Melodist as well  Grin
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« Reply #20 on: June 08, 2011, 11:50:44 AM »

The Orthodox understanding of God's hate is similar to the understanding of God's wrath. God is not passionate as we humans are; rather, when we make ourselves incompatible to the divine fire, we experience it as a destructive force. Wrath could be defined as God actively coming into the presence of that which is incompatible with Him. St. Paul speaks of this:

"According to the grace of God which was given to me, like a wise master builder I laid a foundation, and another is building on it. But each man must be careful how he builds on it. For no man can lay a foundation other than the one which is laid, which is Jesus Christ. Now if any man builds on the foundation with gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, straw, each man’s work will become evident; for the day will show it because it is to be revealed with fire, and the fire itself will test the quality of each man’s work." -First Epistle of St. Paul to the Corinthians
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if Christ does and says x. And someone else does and says not x and you are ever in doubt, follow Christ.
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« Reply #21 on: June 08, 2011, 01:44:39 PM »

But ok so how can you BE SURE of what you're building with that is is fire proof?? How can you be certain that all the effort that you did in one year (for example) won't just be burned away?? Or being able to tell about the quality of what you're doing. I mean, anyone at work in their job wants to know that what they are doing is worthwhile and that the boss will be happy. I'm not talking about constant reassurance no but just that the ruels are clear. What are the spiritual materials that are used to build spiritually?? If that's what this is on about.

Jesus was humanly passionate when he threw out the ppl in the temple. and when he had a whip in his hand and also when he called them a brood of vipers. Do you mean that God and Jesus are not passionate for the same reasons or in the same way as we would be because we are sinfull??
« Last Edit: June 08, 2011, 01:47:45 PM by Poppy » Logged
NicholasMyra
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When in doubt, say: "you lack the proper φρόνημα"


« Reply #22 on: June 08, 2011, 02:42:48 PM »

Jesus was humanly passionate when he threw out the ppl in the temple. and when he had a whip in his hand and also when he called them a brood of vipers. Do you mean that God and Jesus are not passionate for the same reasons or in the same way as we would be because we are sinfull??
To quote the late Bruce Lee, "emotional content; not anger!" Or rather, Passions are not the same thing as divine love, righteous anger, (and despair? not sure.)

Rather, passions are those fallen impulses like rage and greed. Passion comes from the word passio, which means suffering. Passions are those fallen emotional/sensual/instinctual/spiritual states that damage us and others and cause us to suffer and become distant from God.
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if Christ does and says x. And someone else does and says not x and you are ever in doubt, follow Christ.
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« Reply #23 on: June 08, 2011, 02:45:59 PM »

What are the spiritual materials that are used to build spiritually?? If that's what this is on about.
That's what the life of the Church and the teachings of the Church and the Scriptures and Saints and Holy Mysteries and Spiritual Fathers and Mothers and Liturgy and all that is for. That is why the Church is compared with Noah's ark, because it is an Ark of Salvation amidst the sea of chaos and the fallen world.

I find myself struggling to love Jesus Christ, to love His Fire, to even just be an honest, decent ordinary person. But I've come to trust that He will still be there no matter what happens to me. And I take peace and joy in that fact.

You should ask a priest this question, and he will give you a better answer.
« Last Edit: June 08, 2011, 02:50:20 PM by NicholasMyra » Logged

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if Christ does and says x. And someone else does and says not x and you are ever in doubt, follow Christ.
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« Reply #24 on: June 08, 2011, 02:47:32 PM »


Can you give any examples of where we are instructed to hate anything that anyone might be able to respond to?

proverbs 6 16 - 19 ......seven things he hates
jeremiah 44 2-5 ....he hates them that have other Gods
deu 12...29-31 ......evil hearts against his neighbour and false oaths
zech 8...16 - 17
heb 1... 8-9
psalms 5..5
psalms 11...5 hates the wicked and them that love violence


You left out the best example.
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Ignorance is not a lack, but a passion.
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« Reply #25 on: June 08, 2011, 02:53:43 PM »


Can you give any examples of where we are instructed to hate anything that anyone might be able to respond to?

proverbs 6 16 - 19 ......seven things he hates
jeremiah 44 2-5 ....he hates them that have other Gods
deu 12...29-31 ......evil hearts against his neighbour and false oaths
zech 8...16 - 17
heb 1... 8-9
psalms 5..5
psalms 11...5 hates the wicked and them that love violence


You left out the best example.
Which one? Upon a quick search, I like Malachi 2:16.
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if Christ does and says x. And someone else does and says not x and you are ever in doubt, follow Christ.
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« Reply #26 on: June 08, 2011, 03:10:04 PM »


Can you give any examples of where we are instructed to hate anything that anyone might be able to respond to?

proverbs 6 16 - 19 ......seven things he hates
jeremiah 44 2-5 ....he hates them that have other Gods
deu 12...29-31 ......evil hearts against his neighbour and false oaths
zech 8...16 - 17
heb 1... 8-9
psalms 5..5
psalms 11...5 hates the wicked and them that love violence


You left out the best example.
Which one? Upon a quick search, I like Malachi 2:16.

Oh come on . . .

One of my favorite lines from the Gospels:

Luke 14:26

I love to toss that one at the newage Christians to get ther kumbayayas out.

Of course, I understand the traditional and reasonable apologies and exegeses for this verse.

But it is a fun one.
« Last Edit: June 08, 2011, 03:10:28 PM by orthonorm » Logged

Ignorance is not a lack, but a passion.
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« Reply #27 on: June 08, 2011, 06:31:58 PM »


Can you give any examples of where we are instructed to hate anything that anyone might be able to respond to?

proverbs 6 16 - 19 ......seven things he hates
jeremiah 44 2-5 ....he hates them that have other Gods
deu 12...29-31 ......evil hearts against his neighbour and false oaths
zech 8...16 - 17
heb 1... 8-9
psalms 5..5
psalms 11...5 hates the wicked and them that love violence

My question wasn't "what does God hate?", it was "what are we instructed to hate?".
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And FWIW, these are our Fathers too, you know.

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« Reply #28 on: June 08, 2011, 06:34:58 PM »

Luke 14:26

Of course, I understand the traditional and reasonable apologies and exegeses for this verse.

Good example of what we are instructed to "hate", which in this case is preference for God and not actual hatred for those people.
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And FWIW, these are our Fathers too, you know.

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« Reply #29 on: June 08, 2011, 06:53:11 PM »

Poppy, just remember: When you're in the Church, you're not in it alone. You will have your priest. You will have your friend, and probably many new ones, who can come alongside to help you in your struggles. And most of all, you will have the Holy Spirit.

It is hard to change. I think every Orthodox person on earth would say so. But the moment you are baptized and chrismated, everything you have ever done is gone. Clean slate. You are completely free at that moment from anything that is ingrained.

If you're like me, you will cover that clean slate with mud within a few days. But every time we go to confession, we get it all wiped off again. Every time we take the Eucharist, we have Christ living within us, with the Father and Holy Spirit. They will give us the strength to fight on. And we repeat this process for the rest of our lives, slowly learning to pray and overcome those things that are ingrained in us.

It is scary to face change, even though we know God wants us to change. But don't let that scare you away from Christ. He loves you exactly the way you are. And He loves you way too much to let you stay that way.

That is the hope of Christianity, and the Orthodox Church in particular.
« Last Edit: June 08, 2011, 06:54:30 PM by bogdan » Logged
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« Reply #30 on: June 09, 2011, 12:05:03 AM »

Greetings in that Divine and Most Precious Name of Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ!
The Orthodox understanding of God's hate is similar to the understanding of God's wrath. God is not passionate as we humans are; rather, when we make ourselves incompatible to the divine fire, we experience it as a destructive force. Wrath could be defined as God actively coming into the presence of that which is incompatible with Him

Agreed.  The language of the Scriptures does not imply the same meanings we attribute to hate in the English sense.  In the Hebrew verses the word is Sene which does not translate best as hate, but rather "in opposition of" without any of the emotional context of hatred.  You can be opposed to something you have no value judgment against impartially.  In the Greek Scriptures (be it the Septuagint or the New Testament) the word is miseo, which is perhaps better translated as "love less than" rather than hate, but is also used in the context of being "opposed towards" similarly to the Hebrew.  So in the theology of the Scriptures God does not hate anything at all, rather God is opposed to some things and somethings He loves less than others. 
NicholasMyra (or anyone)
So does absolutely everyone have the image of God in them?? Even the most wicked of people?? And is there a cause int he bible to hate what God hates??? And also there are people who God rejected or who God withdraws his spirit from.


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"And lo, a certain lawyer rose, putting Him on trial saying, 'Teacher, by doing what should I enjoy the allotment of life eonian?' Now He said to him, ' What is written in the law? How are you reading?' Now he, answering said, 'You shall be loving the Lord your God our of your whole heart, and with your whole soul, and with your whole strength, and with your whole comprehension, and be loving your associate as yourself.' Now He said to him, 'Correctly have you answered. This be doing, and you shall be living.' " Luke 10:27-30 Greek Literal Version


Where exactly is the room for us to hate in this?

Quote
"Now go and learn what this is: Mercy am I wanting, and not sacrifice, for I did not call the just but the sinners to repentance." Matthew 9:13

stay blessed,
habte selassie
« Last Edit: June 09, 2011, 12:15:14 AM by HabteSelassie » Logged

"Yet stand aloof from stupid questionings and geneologies and strifes and fightings about law, for they are without benefit and vain." Titus 3:10
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« Reply #31 on: June 13, 2011, 03:23:00 PM »

Jesus was humanly passionate when he threw out the ppl in the temple.

Actually, that was His Divinity that was reacting, because they were desecrating His Fathers Temple.

But, to your original topic, we don't always see how we are moving forward or backward or even thinking we are moving forward when we are actually being stagnant.  But, I hope you don't mind my saying so...the fact that you are making a public confession here, is a really good example of trying to move forward.  You know what they say, the first step is admitting it.

I think you'll burn a few brain cells if you focus too much on this issue of how to move forward.  Just enjoy the ride.  Read the holy fathers, discuss Orthodox topics, go to Church etc.  You're already changing, don't you see?  And in a year's time, make an assessment of what you experienced.  You'll be able to see it clearer.  You can also look back to last year.  I don't know you at all, but I think you can say that you don't think in the exact same way as last June.

These are just my simple thoughts. 
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Stillness,  prayer, love and self-control are a four-horsed chariot bearing the intellect to Heaven. (Philokalia 2: p.308 - #24) - St. Thalassios

The proper activity of the intellect is to be attentive at every moment to the words of God.   (Philokalia 2: p. 308 - # 30) - St. Thalassios
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« Reply #32 on: June 13, 2011, 04:08:57 PM »

NicholasMyra
Sounds like you don't think passion is good at all. I do. Maybe i am getting it mixed up with conviction or commitment.

and to your second answer... lolOl i can barely understand the priest at the local Greek church near me. It's a really busy church because they only have it every two weeks so i don't really talk to him. I have started to go to the Oxford Russian one where there is more in English. Well i say "go to" what i mean is .... drive there and sit in the car outside haha... i will go in one day lolOl
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Melodist.... soz i misread your question. I guess God doesn't tell people to hate anything.

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Bogdan and habtesellasie .... thanks  ^_^
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Joasia... i suppose we all change yeah whether we are religious or not we change. So i guess that if we are having allot of religious info or help then the change is bound to be good >.<
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