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Author Topic: Where to draw the line?  (Read 3593 times) Average Rating: 0
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« Reply #45 on: December 10, 2011, 02:29:49 PM »

I think they have to have a correct sense of the Spiritual Identity of Jesus Christ. Their "Christology" must be sound.

For example, I had a  Jewish friend ask me why we don't consider Mormons to be Christians. I said:

Suppose there was a group claiming to be Jewish. They had all of the outward signs of following Judaism. They kept the sabbath holy, they dressed properly, they kept Kosher and followed the Calendar of holy days. However, they claimed God was a Goat.
We were not in his image, he is the image of an actual Goat. And they could prove it from the 14th and 15th book of Moses ( there are no 14th and 15th book of Moses).

Would they be Jewish??

He said no. They had a different God.
Mormons don't claim that God is a goat.
« Last Edit: December 10, 2011, 02:30:32 PM by Jetavan » Logged

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« Reply #46 on: December 10, 2011, 07:53:43 PM »

I think they have to have a correct sense of the Spiritual Identity of Jesus Christ. Their "Christology" must be sound.

For example, I had a  Jewish friend ask me why we don't consider Mormons to be Christians. I said:

Suppose there was a group claiming to be Jewish. They had all of the outward signs of following Judaism. They kept the sabbath holy, they dressed properly, they kept Kosher and followed the Calendar of holy days. However, they claimed God was a Goat.
We were not in his image, he is the image of an actual Goat. And they could prove it from the 14th and 15th book of Moses ( there are no 14th and 15th book of Moses).

Would they be Jewish??

He said no. They had a different God.
Mormons don't claim that God is a goat.

Of course, the example demonstrates in a clear way that if you have a totally different understanding of the nature and identity of God then you are practicing a different religion, even if you have mimicked all the externals.    
« Last Edit: December 10, 2011, 07:54:21 PM by Marc1152 » Logged

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« Reply #47 on: December 10, 2011, 08:48:29 PM »

I think they have to have a correct sense of the Spiritual Identity of Jesus Christ. Their "Christology" must be sound.

For example, I had a  Jewish friend ask me why we don't consider Mormons to be Christians. I said:

Suppose there was a group claiming to be Jewish. They had all of the outward signs of following Judaism. They kept the sabbath holy, they dressed properly, they kept Kosher and followed the Calendar of holy days. However, they claimed God was a Goat.
We were not in his image, he is the image of an actual Goat. And they could prove it from the 14th and 15th book of Moses ( there are no 14th and 15th book of Moses).

Would they be Jewish??

He said no. They had a different God.
Mormons don't claim that God is a goat.

He was using that in his example to his Jewish friend, not as an example of Mormon belief.
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« Reply #48 on: December 10, 2011, 10:43:02 PM »

Okay fine... Here is my understanding, vague as it may be, of what Mormons do beleive.

Jesus Christ is a created being. He worked his way up the spiritual ladder until he attained "God" status. He now rules over our little corner of the Universe. There are many many other "Gods" just like him all over the Universe who attained their status in the same manner, by working their way up the Spiritual Ladder ( which resembles Masonic ascension through levels of attainment. Joesph Smith was a Mason).

We too can follow the example of Jesus, work our way up the ladder of Spiritual Attainment and at some point rule as a God over our own turf.

If that is close enough for you to call it "Christianity" then I'll leave you to it. As for me, the line is drawn. Mormonism is not a form of Christianity. They may just as well be worshiping a Goat God, that is how far off the trolley they are.
« Last Edit: December 10, 2011, 10:43:45 PM by Marc1152 » Logged

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« Reply #49 on: December 10, 2011, 11:11:20 PM »

Where do I draw the line?  Well, the stuff listed in the above post certainly doesn't classify as Christianity. There's a good reason why the Church doesn't generally consider the Jehovah's Witness and Mormon (faith, cult, whatever they are) to be Christian.

Most practicing Muslims have a true respect for Isa and Miriam, but we don't consider them Christians either (Yes, I've read St. John of Damascus on this).

Just because Jesus figures in somewhere to someone's faith, it doesn't mean that it's Christianity. 

How God classifies people is a very different topic.  I'm pretty comfortable with my Archdiocese' understanding that Trinitarian Christians generally count, while others don't. I think a faith/denomination's acceptance, even if not formally, is an indicator as well.

(Joseph Smith was a Mason).

True, but to be fair, he was a really bad one and apparently only completed the first degree.

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« Reply #50 on: December 10, 2011, 11:15:11 PM »

Okay fine... Here is my understanding, vague as it may be, of what Mormons do beleive.

Jesus Christ is a created being. He worked his way up the spiritual ladder until he attained "God" status. He now rules over our little corner of the Universe. There are many many other "Gods" just like him all over the Universe who attained their status in the same manner, by working their way up the Spiritual Ladder ( which resembles Masonic ascension through levels of attainment. Joesph Smith was a Mason).

We too can follow the example of Jesus, work our way up the ladder of Spiritual Attainment and at some point rule as a God over our own turf.

If that is close enough for you to call it "Christianity" then I'll leave you to it. As for me, the line is drawn. Mormonism is not a form of Christianity. They may just as well be worshiping a Goat God, that is how far off the trolley they are.
You're pretty much there. In Mormon theology, all souls are uncreated. From eternity past, we were all semi-concious blobs of "spirit matter" (according to Joseph Smith's weird dualism/materialism hybrid) called "intelligences." Then when a god and his goddess wife have celestial sex, an intelligence somehow migrates from the ethers into a glossy spirit body and is born an angel. Angels then migrate down into human bodies as humanity reproduces on the father god's turf.

This is how the Father became what He is, He used to a angel-turned-Mormon on the planet Kolob by the name of Elohim who lived in obedience to Heavenly Grandfather. Jesus and the Holy Spirit, are the second and third born sons with Satan having been the first, but the Spirit went straight to god, never having to be a man for some reason.

This is what is called King Follett Discourse theology. Some Mormons, such as philosopher Blake Ostler, have an altered view in which the Father is an eternal God like in Christianity (and thus doesn't have a wife or Heavenly Grandfather, I would assume) so as to avoid the infinite regress of KFD but they still hold the rest of the spiel.
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« Reply #51 on: December 10, 2011, 11:20:15 PM »

I thought that Jesus drew the line in Matthew 25:31-46. Smiley Aren't Christians (little Christs) those people who are the sheep in this passage, whether or not they express correct doctrine?

Edited to add verses.  Embarrassed
« Last Edit: December 10, 2011, 11:21:34 PM by Riddikulus » Logged

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« Reply #52 on: December 10, 2011, 11:21:30 PM »

I thought that Jesus drew the line in Matthew 25. Smiley Aren't Christians (little Christs) those people who are the sheep in this passage, whether or not they express correct doctrine?
No.
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« Reply #53 on: December 10, 2011, 11:34:40 PM »

Anyone can "call" themselves a Christian. I would personally say a Christian is one that believes in Christ and makes an effort to follow his teachings. Even if I think it's in the strange way or it's not my church. If someone is calling themselves a Christian while *actively and unapologetically* NOT making an effort to follow his teachings ie participating in hate, greed, cruelty, I don't consider them a Christian.
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« Reply #54 on: December 10, 2011, 11:49:06 PM »

I thought that Jesus drew the line in Matthew 25:31-46. Smiley Aren't Christians (little Christs) those people who are the sheep in this passage, whether or not they express correct doctrine?

Edited to add verses.  Embarrassed

The verse is talking about those who will be saved, not those who can use the label "Christian".
« Last Edit: December 10, 2011, 11:49:21 PM by PrincessMommy » Logged
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« Reply #55 on: December 11, 2011, 12:06:21 AM »

I thought that Jesus drew the line in Matthew 25:31-46. Smiley Aren't Christians (little Christs) those people who are the sheep in this passage, whether or not they express correct doctrine?

Edited to add verses.  Embarrassed

The verse is talking about those who will be saved, not those who can use the label "Christian".


The label Christian can surely only be attached to those who show themselves to be emulators of Christ. By their fruit, not necessarily their doctrinal correctness. I'm sure it helps, but it might not be the be all and end all, because one could be labelled a Christian and fall between the stools. Thus, there are those in the passage I cited who are crying "Lord, Lord" in vain and those who aren't crying it at all, but still are emulators of Christ; which is what sets the sheep apart.

I hope we are all found on the baaing, woolly team. Smiley

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« Reply #56 on: December 11, 2011, 12:23:00 AM »

I thought that Jesus drew the line in Matthew 25:31-46. Smiley Aren't Christians (little Christs) those people who are the sheep in this passage, whether or not they express correct doctrine?

Edited to add verses.  Embarrassed

The verse is talking about those who will be saved, not those who can use the label "Christian".


The label Christian can surely only be attached to those who show themselves to be emulators of Christ. By their fruit, not necessarily their doctrinal correctness. I'm sure it helps, but it might not be the be all and end all, because one could be labelled a Christian and fall between the stools. Thus, there are those in the passage I cited who are crying "Lord, Lord" in vain and those who aren't crying it at all, but still are emulators of Christ; which is what sets the sheep apart.

I hope we are all found on the baaing, woolly team. Smiley


Goats baaah, and many of them are woolly.
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« Reply #57 on: December 11, 2011, 12:24:34 AM »

I thought that Jesus drew the line in Matthew 25:31-46. Smiley Aren't Christians (little Christs) those people who are the sheep in this passage, whether or not they express correct doctrine?

Edited to add verses.  Embarrassed

The verse is talking about those who will be saved, not those who can use the label "Christian".


The label Christian can surely only be attached to those who show themselves to be emulators of Christ. By their fruit, not necessarily their doctrinal correctness.
Without doctrinal correctness, there is only bitter fruit.
I'm sure it helps, but it might not be the be all and end all, because one could be labelled a Christian and fall between the stools. Thus, there are those in the passage I cited who are crying "Lord, Lord" in vain and those who aren't crying it at all, but still are emulators of Christ; which is what sets the sheep apart.
There is no implication that the seperation from those who had incorrect doctrine but "did good works."  As far as I have seen it interpreted by the Fathers, it is a seperation within those who had correct doctrine, between those who practiced what was preached, and those who did not. E.g. St. John Chrysostom.
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For further back also He says, that they who receive not such as these shall suffer more grievous things than Sodom; and here He says, Inasmuch as you did it not unto one of the least of these my brethren, you did it not unto me. What sayest Thou? They are Your brethren; and how dost Thou call them least. Why, for this reason they are brethren, because they are lowly, because they are poor, because they are outcast. For such does He most invite to brotherhood, the unknown, the contemptible, not meaning by these the monks only, and them that have occupied the mountains, but every believer; though he be a secular person, yet if he be hungry, and famishing, and naked, and a stranger, His will is he should have the benefit of all this care. For baptism renders a man a brother, and the partaking of the divine mysteries.
http://www.newadvent.org/fathers/200179.htm

I hope we are all found on the baaing, woolly team. Smiley
Amen!
« Last Edit: December 11, 2011, 12:37:13 AM by ialmisry » Logged

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« Reply #58 on: December 11, 2011, 12:34:35 AM »

I thought that Jesus drew the line in Matthew 25:31-46. Smiley Aren't Christians (little Christs) those people who are the sheep in this passage, whether or not they express correct doctrine?

Edited to add verses.  Embarrassed

The verse is talking about those who will be saved, not those who can use the label "Christian".


The label Christian can surely only be attached to those who show themselves to be emulators of Christ. By their fruit, not necessarily their doctrinal correctness. I'm sure it helps, but it might not be the be all and end all, because one could be labelled a Christian and fall between the stools. Thus, there are those in the passage I cited who are crying "Lord, Lord" in vain and those who aren't crying it at all, but still are emulators of Christ; which is what sets the sheep apart.

I hope we are all found on the baaing, woolly team. Smiley


Goats baaah, and many of them are woolly.

 laugh
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« Reply #59 on: December 12, 2011, 07:51:27 PM »

i draw the line at the Trinity, even the trinity with the filioque ill accept as you being called christian
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« Reply #60 on: December 12, 2011, 08:46:49 PM »

i draw the line at the Trinity, even the trinity with the filioque ill accept as you being called christian
What about extreme Calvinists who believe that evil comes from God?
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« Reply #61 on: December 12, 2011, 09:21:35 PM »

evil comes from God?
Ontologically or providentially or both?
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« Reply #62 on: December 12, 2011, 09:40:27 PM »

evil comes from God?
Ontologically or providentially or both?
Both. Also, the Calvinsists he's speaking of don't draw much if any distinction between the two AFAICT.
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« Reply #63 on: December 12, 2011, 09:55:05 PM »

i draw the line at the Trinity, even the trinity with the filioque ill accept as you being called christian
What about extreme Calvinists who believe that evil comes from God?
which groups are you talking about?

(honest question, i dont know of any)
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« Reply #64 on: December 13, 2011, 02:36:37 AM »

I'm still not clear on what the point of drawing a line is?

The Fathers drew certain lines with regard to the reception of converts based on degree of deviation in both theology and praxis, but they don't seem to have been particularly protective of the term 'Christian'. The addition of the adjective 'Orthodox' (or 'Catholic') implies the existence of Christians who are neither Orthodox nor Catholic. The Arians and Sabellians did not accept the Creed but were considered heretical Christians. Some of the Gnostic groups Ireneus lists as heretical sects of Christianity are just about as far out there as Mormons.

As long as someone bases their religion on the historical personage of Jesus Christ, they seem to have a valid claim to the term Christian, at least in Patristic writing.
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« Reply #65 on: December 13, 2011, 02:58:04 AM »

i draw the line at the Trinity, even the trinity with the filioque ill accept as you being called christian
What about extreme Calvinists who believe that evil comes from God?
which groups are you talking about?

(honest question, i dont know of any)
The proprietors of the website, Outside the Camp as well as the Westboro Baptist Church (not that they should count as Christians for other reasons, of course). Individuals of that sort would be John Sproul (son of R.C. Sproul), Vincent Cheung, and I believe Irwin Palmer.
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