Author Topic: Evangelical missions to historically Orthodox countries  (Read 13482 times)

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Offline primuspilus

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Re: Evangelical missions to historically Orthodox countries
« Reply #180 on: May 05, 2014, 09:09:27 AM »

Question - do you also see a radical difference between leaving Orthodoxy and giving it strong consideration but deciding not to convert?

I hope y'all do not mind. I will just quote Metropolitan Philaret of blessed memory:

"The Holy Orthodox Church is the repository of the divinely revealed Truth in all its fullness and fidelity to apostolic Tradition.  Hence, he who leaves the Church, who intentionally and consciously falls away from it, joins the ranks of its opponents and becomes a renegade as regards apostolic Tradition.  The Church dreadfully anathematized such renegades, in accordance with the words of the Saviour Himself (Matt. 18:17) and of the Apostle Paul (Gal. 1:8-9), threatening them with eternal damnation and calling them to return to the Orthodox fold.  It is self evident, however, that sincere Christians who are Roman Catholics, or Lutherans, or members, of other non-Orthodox confessions, cannot be termed renegades or heretics—i.e. those who knowingly pervert the truth...*  They have been born and raised and are living according to the creed which they have inherited, just as do the majority of you who are Orthodox; in their lives there has not been a moment of personal and conscious renunciation of Orthodoxy.  The Lord, "Who will have all men to be saved" (I Tim. 2:4) and "Who enlightens every man born into the world" (Jn. 1.43), undoubtedly is leading them also towards salvation In His own way.

With reference to the above question, it is particularly instructive to recall the answer once given to an inquirer by the Blessed Theophan the Recluse.  The blessed one replied more or less thus:


"You ask, will the heterodox be saved... Why do you worry about them?  They have a Saviour Who desires the salvation of every human being. He will take care of them.  You and I should not be burdened with such a concern.  Study yourself and your own sins...

I will tell you one thing, however: should you, being Orthodox and possessing the Truth in its fullness, betray Orthodoxy, and enter a different faith, you will lose your soul forever."

http://blessedphilaret.blogspot.com/2008/09/will-heterodox-be-saved.html

That's pretty strong.  Had I heard that before I converted, I probably would not have signed up.
Well, if God holds you responsible for what you DO know and not what you DONT know......

PP
"I confidently affirm that whoever calls himself Universal Bishop is the precursor of Antichrist"
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"Never, never, never let anyone tell you that, in order to be Orthodox, you must also be eastern." St. John Maximovitch, The Wonderworker

Offline katherineofdixie

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Re: Evangelical missions to historically Orthodox countries
« Reply #181 on: May 05, 2014, 09:43:42 AM »

Question - do you also see a radical difference between leaving Orthodoxy and giving it strong consideration but deciding not to convert?

I hope y'all do not mind. I will just quote Metropolitan Philaret of blessed memory:

"The Holy Orthodox Church is the repository of the divinely revealed Truth in all its fullness and fidelity to apostolic Tradition.  Hence, he who leaves the Church, who intentionally and consciously falls away from it, joins the ranks of its opponents and becomes a renegade as regards apostolic Tradition.  The Church dreadfully anathematized such renegades, in accordance with the words of the Saviour Himself (Matt. 18:17) and of the Apostle Paul (Gal. 1:8-9), threatening them with eternal damnation and calling them to return to the Orthodox fold.  It is self evident, however, that sincere Christians who are Roman Catholics, or Lutherans, or members, of other non-Orthodox confessions, cannot be termed renegades or heretics—i.e. those who knowingly pervert the truth...*  They have been born and raised and are living according to the creed which they have inherited, just as do the majority of you who are Orthodox; in their lives there has not been a moment of personal and conscious renunciation of Orthodoxy.  The Lord, "Who will have all men to be saved" (I Tim. 2:4) and "Who enlightens every man born into the world" (Jn. 1.43), undoubtedly is leading them also towards salvation In His own way.

With reference to the above question, it is particularly instructive to recall the answer once given to an inquirer by the Blessed Theophan the Recluse.  The blessed one replied more or less thus:


"You ask, will the heterodox be saved... Why do you worry about them?  They have a Saviour Who desires the salvation of every human being. He will take care of them.  You and I should not be burdened with such a concern.  Study yourself and your own sins...

I will tell you one thing, however: should you, being Orthodox and possessing the Truth in its fullness, betray Orthodoxy, and enter a different faith, you will lose your soul forever."

http://blessedphilaret.blogspot.com/2008/09/will-heterodox-be-saved.html

That's pretty strong.  Had I heard that before I converted, I probably would not have signed up.

Not being argumentative, just curious. Why does this bother you?
"If but ten of us lead a holy life, we shall kindle a fire which shall light up the entire city."

 St. John Chrysostom

Offline DeniseDenise

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Re: Evangelical missions to historically Orthodox countries
« Reply #182 on: May 05, 2014, 10:55:42 AM »
I don't know about the original commenter but it bothers me on the front of

'Why worry about whether these other human beings will be saved. Don't bother, not your problem'

As humans and Orthodox or course it should be our concern where we can bring other people to the Fullness of the Church.
All opinions expressed by myself are quite tragically my own, and not those of any other poster or wall hangings.

Offline primuspilus

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Re: Evangelical missions to historically Orthodox countries
« Reply #183 on: May 05, 2014, 11:00:22 AM »
I don't know about the original commenter but it bothers me on the front of

'Why worry about whether these other human beings will be saved. Don't bother, not your problem'

As humans and Orthodox or course it should be our concern where we can bring other people to the Fullness of the Church.
Of course. But what eventually happens, is people focus on this-or-that exception and ignore their own sins (the argument about Thief on the Cross and Baptism being salvific comes to mind). People still trying to find a one-size-fits-all, blanket application of salvation and it does not exist.

PP
"I confidently affirm that whoever calls himself Universal Bishop is the precursor of Antichrist"
Gregory the Great

"Never, never, never let anyone tell you that, in order to be Orthodox, you must also be eastern." St. John Maximovitch, The Wonderworker

Offline DeniseDenise

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Re: Evangelical missions to historically Orthodox countries
« Reply #184 on: May 05, 2014, 11:10:57 AM »
I don't know about the original commenter but it bothers me on the front of

'Why worry about whether these other human beings will be saved. Don't bother, not your problem'

As humans and Orthodox or course it should be our concern where we can bring other people to the Fullness of the Church.
Of course. But what eventually happens, is people focus on this-or-that exception and ignore their own sins (the argument about Thief on the Cross and Baptism being salvific comes to mind). People still trying to find a one-size-fits-all, blanket application of salvation and it does not exist.

PP

Not arguing...just expressing why that quote could be upsetting....I don't think reading something like that makes one focus less on one's own sins.....just that if there is a full blown 'don't bother with those other people...only we Orthodox matter' attitude, then honestly I will say 'That is not the sort of believer in Christ I would wish to become'
All opinions expressed by myself are quite tragically my own, and not those of any other poster or wall hangings.

Offline primuspilus

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Re: Evangelical missions to historically Orthodox countries
« Reply #185 on: May 05, 2014, 11:12:15 AM »
Quote
'don't bother with those other people...only we Orthodox matter'
If that were the orthodox standpoint, I'd know that Orthodoxy is not The Church. Luckily, even though some Orthodox folks silently espouse this, Im glad the Church does not.

PP
"I confidently affirm that whoever calls himself Universal Bishop is the precursor of Antichrist"
Gregory the Great

"Never, never, never let anyone tell you that, in order to be Orthodox, you must also be eastern." St. John Maximovitch, The Wonderworker

Offline James2

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Re: Evangelical missions to historically Orthodox countries
« Reply #186 on: May 05, 2014, 11:34:33 AM »

Question - do you also see a radical difference between leaving Orthodoxy and giving it strong consideration but deciding not to convert?

I hope y'all do not mind. I will just quote Metropolitan Philaret of blessed memory:

"The Holy Orthodox Church is the repository of the divinely revealed Truth in all its fullness and fidelity to apostolic Tradition.  Hence, he who leaves the Church, who intentionally and consciously falls away from it, joins the ranks of its opponents and becomes a renegade as regards apostolic Tradition.  The Church dreadfully anathematized such renegades, in accordance with the words of the Saviour Himself (Matt. 18:17) and of the Apostle Paul (Gal. 1:8-9), threatening them with eternal damnation and calling them to return to the Orthodox fold.  It is self evident, however, that sincere Christians who are Roman Catholics, or Lutherans, or members, of other non-Orthodox confessions, cannot be termed renegades or heretics—i.e. those who knowingly pervert the truth...*  They have been born and raised and are living according to the creed which they have inherited, just as do the majority of you who are Orthodox; in their lives there has not been a moment of personal and conscious renunciation of Orthodoxy.  The Lord, "Who will have all men to be saved" (I Tim. 2:4) and "Who enlightens every man born into the world" (Jn. 1.43), undoubtedly is leading them also towards salvation In His own way.

With reference to the above question, it is particularly instructive to recall the answer once given to an inquirer by the Blessed Theophan the Recluse.  The blessed one replied more or less thus:


"You ask, will the heterodox be saved... Why do you worry about them?  They have a Saviour Who desires the salvation of every human being. He will take care of them.  You and I should not be burdened with such a concern.  Study yourself and your own sins...

I will tell you one thing, however: should you, being Orthodox and possessing the Truth in its fullness, betray Orthodoxy, and enter a different faith, you will lose your soul forever."

http://blessedphilaret.blogspot.com/2008/09/will-heterodox-be-saved.html

That's pretty strong.  Had I heard that before I converted, I probably would not have signed up.

Not being argumentative, just curious. Why does this bother you?

It's the last sentence that I find troubling.  When I hear threats of damnation coming from any religion, it makes me want to run the other way.  Nobody knows enough about the next world to make claims like that.  I don't think it's fair or helpful to expect potential converts to make a supposedly irrevocable decision.  People grow and change over time.

Offline katherineofdixie

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Re: Evangelical missions to historically Orthodox countries
« Reply #187 on: May 05, 2014, 11:55:03 AM »
Interesting.

Because that's not at all what I get from the quotation. I don't get the exclusivity that some have mentioned, especially reading the entire thing in context.

And I truly don't understand what people growing and changing has to do with the truth.

Unless it's got to do with that (forgive me) ridiculous and ultimately futile notion that there is no truth - or that we all have our own truth and each is equally valid.
"If but ten of us lead a holy life, we shall kindle a fire which shall light up the entire city."

 St. John Chrysostom

Offline Antonious Nikolas

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Re: Evangelical missions to historically Orthodox countries
« Reply #188 on: May 05, 2014, 12:43:34 PM »
Interesting.

Because that's not at all what I get from the quotation. I don't get the exclusivity that some have mentioned, especially reading the entire thing in context.

And I truly don't understand what people growing and changing has to do with the truth.

Unless it's got to do with that (forgive me) ridiculous and ultimately futile notion that there is no truth - or that we all have our own truth and each is equally valid.

+1

I see what Denise is saying, and how the quote could be taken that way out of context or at face value, but I think that what the blessed Father (may he pray for us) was saying was basically, "Don't judge the heterodox, God loves them too.  Remember that you're a sinner and not fit to judge anyone".  I don't take that to mean that we shouldn't reach out to them and invite them to "taste and see" the fullness of the Faith, but rather that we shouldn't condemn them all to hell as if they were conscious of the heretical nature of their teachings.  I also agree with Katherine that Truth is not a subjective thing open to interpretation.As the hymn declares, "We have seen the True Light! We have received the Heavenly Spirit! We have found the True Faith! Worshiping the Undivided Trinity, Who has saved us".
I'm with the camp of 13 million Americans that believe politicians are, or are controlled by, Reptilians. I think only monks can solve this problem. It doesn't seem right that they prefer to ignore it.

Offline primuspilus

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Re: Evangelical missions to historically Orthodox countries
« Reply #189 on: May 05, 2014, 12:46:47 PM »

Question - do you also see a radical difference between leaving Orthodoxy and giving it strong consideration but deciding not to convert?

I hope y'all do not mind. I will just quote Metropolitan Philaret of blessed memory:

"The Holy Orthodox Church is the repository of the divinely revealed Truth in all its fullness and fidelity to apostolic Tradition.  Hence, he who leaves the Church, who intentionally and consciously falls away from it, joins the ranks of its opponents and becomes a renegade as regards apostolic Tradition.  The Church dreadfully anathematized such renegades, in accordance with the words of the Saviour Himself (Matt. 18:17) and of the Apostle Paul (Gal. 1:8-9), threatening them with eternal damnation and calling them to return to the Orthodox fold.  It is self evident, however, that sincere Christians who are Roman Catholics, or Lutherans, or members, of other non-Orthodox confessions, cannot be termed renegades or heretics—i.e. those who knowingly pervert the truth...*  They have been born and raised and are living according to the creed which they have inherited, just as do the majority of you who are Orthodox; in their lives there has not been a moment of personal and conscious renunciation of Orthodoxy.  The Lord, "Who will have all men to be saved" (I Tim. 2:4) and "Who enlightens every man born into the world" (Jn. 1.43), undoubtedly is leading them also towards salvation In His own way.

With reference to the above question, it is particularly instructive to recall the answer once given to an inquirer by the Blessed Theophan the Recluse.  The blessed one replied more or less thus:


"You ask, will the heterodox be saved... Why do you worry about them?  They have a Saviour Who desires the salvation of every human being. He will take care of them.  You and I should not be burdened with such a concern.  Study yourself and your own sins...

I will tell you one thing, however: should you, being Orthodox and possessing the Truth in its fullness, betray Orthodoxy, and enter a different faith, you will lose your soul forever."

http://blessedphilaret.blogspot.com/2008/09/will-heterodox-be-saved.html

That's pretty strong.  Had I heard that before I converted, I probably would not have signed up.

Not being argumentative, just curious. Why does this bother you?

It's the last sentence that I find troubling.  When I hear threats of damnation coming from any religion, it makes me want to run the other way.  Nobody knows enough about the next world to make claims like that.  I don't think it's fair or helpful to expect potential converts to make a supposedly irrevocable decision.  People grow and change over time.
So, if Christ says "I am the way, the truth, and the life; no man comes to the Father but by me", is he a liar then?

PP
"I confidently affirm that whoever calls himself Universal Bishop is the precursor of Antichrist"
Gregory the Great

"Never, never, never let anyone tell you that, in order to be Orthodox, you must also be eastern." St. John Maximovitch, The Wonderworker

Offline katherineofdixie

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Re: Evangelical missions to historically Orthodox countries
« Reply #190 on: May 05, 2014, 01:13:19 PM »
...I think that what the blessed Father (may he pray for us) was saying was basically, "Don't judge the heterodox, God loves them too.  Remember that you're a sinner and not fit to judge anyone".  I don't take that to mean that we shouldn't reach out to them and invite them to "taste and see" the fullness of the Faith, but rather that we shouldn't condemn them all to hell as if they were conscious of the heretical nature of their teachings. 

That's how I read it also.
"If but ten of us lead a holy life, we shall kindle a fire which shall light up the entire city."

 St. John Chrysostom

Offline methodius

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Re: Evangelical missions to historically Orthodox countries
« Reply #191 on: May 05, 2014, 01:57:08 PM »
I read it differently; but amounting to the same thing I think.
  -I- am the Way. ...

Any thoughts on that?
kyrie eleison

Offline Yurysprudentsiya

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Re: Evangelical missions to historically Orthodox countries
« Reply #192 on: May 05, 2014, 02:51:57 PM »

Question - do you also see a radical difference between leaving Orthodoxy and giving it strong consideration but deciding not to convert?

I hope y'all do not mind. I will just quote Metropolitan Philaret of blessed memory:

"The Holy Orthodox Church is the repository of the divinely revealed Truth in all its fullness and fidelity to apostolic Tradition.  Hence, he who leaves the Church, who intentionally and consciously falls away from it, joins the ranks of its opponents and becomes a renegade as regards apostolic Tradition.  The Church dreadfully anathematized such renegades, in accordance with the words of the Saviour Himself (Matt. 18:17) and of the Apostle Paul (Gal. 1:8-9), threatening them with eternal damnation and calling them to return to the Orthodox fold.  It is self evident, however, that sincere Christians who are Roman Catholics, or Lutherans, or members, of other non-Orthodox confessions, cannot be termed renegades or heretics—i.e. those who knowingly pervert the truth...*  They have been born and raised and are living according to the creed which they have inherited, just as do the majority of you who are Orthodox; in their lives there has not been a moment of personal and conscious renunciation of Orthodoxy.  The Lord, "Who will have all men to be saved" (I Tim. 2:4) and "Who enlightens every man born into the world" (Jn. 1.43), undoubtedly is leading them also towards salvation In His own way.

With reference to the above question, it is particularly instructive to recall the answer once given to an inquirer by the Blessed Theophan the Recluse.  The blessed one replied more or less thus:


"You ask, will the heterodox be saved... Why do you worry about them?  They have a Saviour Who desires the salvation of every human being. He will take care of them.  You and I should not be burdened with such a concern.  Study yourself and your own sins...

I will tell you one thing, however: should you, being Orthodox and possessing the Truth in its fullness, betray Orthodoxy, and enter a different faith, you will lose your soul forever."

http://blessedphilaret.blogspot.com/2008/09/will-heterodox-be-saved.html

That's pretty strong.  Had I heard that before I converted, I probably would not have signed up.

Not being argumentative, just curious. Why does this bother you?

It's the last sentence that I find troubling.  When I hear threats of damnation coming from any religion, it makes me want to run the other way.  Nobody knows enough about the next world to make claims like that.  I don't think it's fair or helpful to expect potential converts to make a supposedly irrevocable decision.  People grow and change over time.
So, if Christ says "I am the way, the truth, and the life; no man comes to the Father but by me", is he a liar then?

PP

Of course not.  But this leaves open the very real possibility that many come to the Father by Christ although they were ignorant of His name, and were saved through His Church although they did not recognize it here on earth. Such may well be overjoyed to meet Him whether here or in the hereafter.  This is in the spirit of the above quotes.  But woe to those who know all of this and reject it.  But I'm not even sure that all Orthodox know all of this or that many who leave consciously reject it.  Hence, the rule - No judging!!!!
« Last Edit: May 05, 2014, 02:52:27 PM by Yurysprudentsiya »

Offline Antonious Nikolas

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Re: Evangelical missions to historically Orthodox countries
« Reply #193 on: May 05, 2014, 03:26:48 PM »
Of course not.  But this leaves open the very real possibility that many come to the Father by Christ although they were ignorant of His name, and were saved through His Church although they did not recognize it here on earth. Such may well be overjoyed to meet Him whether here or in the hereafter.  This is in the spirit of the above quotes.  But woe to those who know all of this and reject it.  But I'm not even sure that all Orthodox know all of this or that many who leave consciously reject it.  Hence, the rule - No judging!!!!

Right.  Leave all judging to God.  And if you love your brother and you feel he is in danger, pray for him.
« Last Edit: May 05, 2014, 03:27:30 PM by Antonious Nikolas »
I'm with the camp of 13 million Americans that believe politicians are, or are controlled by, Reptilians. I think only monks can solve this problem. It doesn't seem right that they prefer to ignore it.

Offline James2

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Re: Evangelical missions to historically Orthodox countries
« Reply #194 on: May 05, 2014, 03:45:56 PM »
Interesting.

Because that's not at all what I get from the quotation. I don't get the exclusivity that some have mentioned, especially reading the entire thing in context.

And I truly don't understand what people growing and changing has to do with the truth.

Unless it's got to do with that (forgive me) ridiculous and ultimately futile notion that there is no truth - or that we all have our own truth and each is equally valid.

I think that there is truth, but that our individual understandings of it can change.  Since spiritual truth is unverifiable in this life, we have to take our best shot at grasping it and hope for the best.  And that may involve making changes in what we believe.

Offline James2

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Re: Evangelical missions to historically Orthodox countries
« Reply #195 on: May 05, 2014, 03:47:06 PM »

Question - do you also see a radical difference between leaving Orthodoxy and giving it strong consideration but deciding not to convert?

I hope y'all do not mind. I will just quote Metropolitan Philaret of blessed memory:

"The Holy Orthodox Church is the repository of the divinely revealed Truth in all its fullness and fidelity to apostolic Tradition.  Hence, he who leaves the Church, who intentionally and consciously falls away from it, joins the ranks of its opponents and becomes a renegade as regards apostolic Tradition.  The Church dreadfully anathematized such renegades, in accordance with the words of the Saviour Himself (Matt. 18:17) and of the Apostle Paul (Gal. 1:8-9), threatening them with eternal damnation and calling them to return to the Orthodox fold.  It is self evident, however, that sincere Christians who are Roman Catholics, or Lutherans, or members, of other non-Orthodox confessions, cannot be termed renegades or heretics—i.e. those who knowingly pervert the truth...*  They have been born and raised and are living according to the creed which they have inherited, just as do the majority of you who are Orthodox; in their lives there has not been a moment of personal and conscious renunciation of Orthodoxy.  The Lord, "Who will have all men to be saved" (I Tim. 2:4) and "Who enlightens every man born into the world" (Jn. 1.43), undoubtedly is leading them also towards salvation In His own way.

With reference to the above question, it is particularly instructive to recall the answer once given to an inquirer by the Blessed Theophan the Recluse.  The blessed one replied more or less thus:


"You ask, will the heterodox be saved... Why do you worry about them?  They have a Saviour Who desires the salvation of every human being. He will take care of them.  You and I should not be burdened with such a concern.  Study yourself and your own sins...

I will tell you one thing, however: should you, being Orthodox and possessing the Truth in its fullness, betray Orthodoxy, and enter a different faith, you will lose your soul forever."

http://blessedphilaret.blogspot.com/2008/09/will-heterodox-be-saved.html

That's pretty strong.  Had I heard that before I converted, I probably would not have signed up.

Not being argumentative, just curious. Why does this bother you?

It's the last sentence that I find troubling.  When I hear threats of damnation coming from any religion, it makes me want to run the other way.  Nobody knows enough about the next world to make claims like that.  I don't think it's fair or helpful to expect potential converts to make a supposedly irrevocable decision.  People grow and change over time.
So, if Christ says "I am the way, the truth, and the life; no man comes to the Father but by me", is he a liar then?

PP

No, but the operative word in what you said is "if".

Offline katherineofdixie

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Re: Evangelical missions to historically Orthodox countries
« Reply #196 on: May 05, 2014, 03:56:27 PM »
Interesting.

Because that's not at all what I get from the quotation. I don't get the exclusivity that some have mentioned, especially reading the entire thing in context.

And I truly don't understand what people growing and changing has to do with the truth.

Unless it's got to do with that (forgive me) ridiculous and ultimately futile notion that there is no truth - or that we all have our own truth and each is equally valid.

I think that there is truth, but that our individual understandings of it can change.  Since spiritual truth is unverifiable in this life, we have to take our best shot at grasping it and hope for the best.  And that may involve making changes in what we believe.

But if we change them to something that the Church doesn't believe/preach/teach, we place ourselves outside the Church. Which is what I think Met. Philaret was talking about.
"If but ten of us lead a holy life, we shall kindle a fire which shall light up the entire city."

 St. John Chrysostom

Offline primuspilus

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Re: Evangelical missions to historically Orthodox countries
« Reply #197 on: May 06, 2014, 08:21:58 AM »

Question - do you also see a radical difference between leaving Orthodoxy and giving it strong consideration but deciding not to convert?

I hope y'all do not mind. I will just quote Metropolitan Philaret of blessed memory:

"The Holy Orthodox Church is the repository of the divinely revealed Truth in all its fullness and fidelity to apostolic Tradition.  Hence, he who leaves the Church, who intentionally and consciously falls away from it, joins the ranks of its opponents and becomes a renegade as regards apostolic Tradition.  The Church dreadfully anathematized such renegades, in accordance with the words of the Saviour Himself (Matt. 18:17) and of the Apostle Paul (Gal. 1:8-9), threatening them with eternal damnation and calling them to return to the Orthodox fold.  It is self evident, however, that sincere Christians who are Roman Catholics, or Lutherans, or members, of other non-Orthodox confessions, cannot be termed renegades or heretics—i.e. those who knowingly pervert the truth...*  They have been born and raised and are living according to the creed which they have inherited, just as do the majority of you who are Orthodox; in their lives there has not been a moment of personal and conscious renunciation of Orthodoxy.  The Lord, "Who will have all men to be saved" (I Tim. 2:4) and "Who enlightens every man born into the world" (Jn. 1.43), undoubtedly is leading them also towards salvation In His own way.

With reference to the above question, it is particularly instructive to recall the answer once given to an inquirer by the Blessed Theophan the Recluse.  The blessed one replied more or less thus:


"You ask, will the heterodox be saved... Why do you worry about them?  They have a Saviour Who desires the salvation of every human being. He will take care of them.  You and I should not be burdened with such a concern.  Study yourself and your own sins...

I will tell you one thing, however: should you, being Orthodox and possessing the Truth in its fullness, betray Orthodoxy, and enter a different faith, you will lose your soul forever."

http://blessedphilaret.blogspot.com/2008/09/will-heterodox-be-saved.html

That's pretty strong.  Had I heard that before I converted, I probably would not have signed up.

Not being argumentative, just curious. Why does this bother you?

It's the last sentence that I find troubling.  When I hear threats of damnation coming from any religion, it makes me want to run the other way.  Nobody knows enough about the next world to make claims like that.  I don't think it's fair or helpful to expect potential converts to make a supposedly irrevocable decision.  People grow and change over time.
So, if Christ says "I am the way, the truth, and the life; no man comes to the Father but by me", is he a liar then?

PP

No, but the operative word in what you said is "if".
Ah, so the writers made it up then?

PP
"I confidently affirm that whoever calls himself Universal Bishop is the precursor of Antichrist"
Gregory the Great

"Never, never, never let anyone tell you that, in order to be Orthodox, you must also be eastern." St. John Maximovitch, The Wonderworker

Offline methodius

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Re: Evangelical missions to historically Orthodox countries
« Reply #198 on: May 06, 2014, 11:32:12 AM »
But there is no 'operative word'  - if - in the Scriptural quote. (John 14: 6 ' I am the Way...')
 and similarly in John 9:25 to Martha at Lazarus' tomb. ' I am the Resurrection and the Life...'.
No ifs about it.
You are drawing conclusions from faulty data.
kyrie eleison

Offline James2

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Re: Evangelical missions to historically Orthodox countries
« Reply #199 on: May 06, 2014, 09:54:13 PM »
But there is no 'operative word'  - if - in the Scriptural quote. (John 14: 6 ' I am the Way...')
 and similarly in John 9:25 to Martha at Lazarus' tomb. ' I am the Resurrection and the Life...'.
No ifs about it.
You are drawing conclusions from faulty data.

I know what scripture says.  The "if" was in PP's sentence that contained the quote.

Offline James2

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Re: Evangelical missions to historically Orthodox countries
« Reply #200 on: May 06, 2014, 10:01:28 PM »

Question - do you also see a radical difference between leaving Orthodoxy and giving it strong consideration but deciding not to convert?

I hope y'all do not mind. I will just quote Metropolitan Philaret of blessed memory:

"The Holy Orthodox Church is the repository of the divinely revealed Truth in all its fullness and fidelity to apostolic Tradition.  Hence, he who leaves the Church, who intentionally and consciously falls away from it, joins the ranks of its opponents and becomes a renegade as regards apostolic Tradition.  The Church dreadfully anathematized such renegades, in accordance with the words of the Saviour Himself (Matt. 18:17) and of the Apostle Paul (Gal. 1:8-9), threatening them with eternal damnation and calling them to return to the Orthodox fold.  It is self evident, however, that sincere Christians who are Roman Catholics, or Lutherans, or members, of other non-Orthodox confessions, cannot be termed renegades or heretics—i.e. those who knowingly pervert the truth...*  They have been born and raised and are living according to the creed which they have inherited, just as do the majority of you who are Orthodox; in their lives there has not been a moment of personal and conscious renunciation of Orthodoxy.  The Lord, "Who will have all men to be saved" (I Tim. 2:4) and "Who enlightens every man born into the world" (Jn. 1.43), undoubtedly is leading them also towards salvation In His own way.

With reference to the above question, it is particularly instructive to recall the answer once given to an inquirer by the Blessed Theophan the Recluse.  The blessed one replied more or less thus:


"You ask, will the heterodox be saved... Why do you worry about them?  They have a Saviour Who desires the salvation of every human being. He will take care of them.  You and I should not be burdened with such a concern.  Study yourself and your own sins...

I will tell you one thing, however: should you, being Orthodox and possessing the Truth in its fullness, betray Orthodoxy, and enter a different faith, you will lose your soul forever."

http://blessedphilaret.blogspot.com/2008/09/will-heterodox-be-saved.html

That's pretty strong.  Had I heard that before I converted, I probably would not have signed up.

Not being argumentative, just curious. Why does this bother you?

It's the last sentence that I find troubling.  When I hear threats of damnation coming from any religion, it makes me want to run the other way.  Nobody knows enough about the next world to make claims like that.  I don't think it's fair or helpful to expect potential converts to make a supposedly irrevocable decision.  People grow and change over time.
So, if Christ says "I am the way, the truth, and the life; no man comes to the Father but by me", is he a liar then?

PP

No, but the operative word in what you said is "if".
Ah, so the writers made it up then?

PP

Not saying they made it up, not saying they didn't.  But let's say it's true.  It is still subject to interpretation.  The Theophan and Philaret quotes are but one interpretation.  And even if explicit belief in Christ is necessary for salvation, which I seriously doubt, it doesn't necessarily follow that one must remain Orthodox in order to be saved.

Offline James2

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Re: Evangelical missions to historically Orthodox countries
« Reply #201 on: May 06, 2014, 10:04:35 PM »
Interesting.

Because that's not at all what I get from the quotation. I don't get the exclusivity that some have mentioned, especially reading the entire thing in context.

And I truly don't understand what people growing and changing has to do with the truth.

Unless it's got to do with that (forgive me) ridiculous and ultimately futile notion that there is no truth - or that we all have our own truth and each is equally valid.

I think that there is truth, but that our individual understandings of it can change.  Since spiritual truth is unverifiable in this life, we have to take our best shot at grasping it and hope for the best.  And that may involve making changes in what we believe.

But if we change them to something that the Church doesn't believe/preach/teach, we place ourselves outside the Church. Which is what I think Met. Philaret was talking about.

Yes, that is exactly what he was talking about.  We just disagree about the consequences of leaving the Orthodox church.

Offline TheTrisagion

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Re: Evangelical missions to historically Orthodox countries
« Reply #202 on: May 06, 2014, 10:06:35 PM »
My thoughts on leaving the Church:  It's bad.

How bad?  I don't really know, but neither do I want to test it.
God bless!

Offline methodius

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Re: Evangelical missions to historically Orthodox countries
« Reply #203 on: May 06, 2014, 10:31:23 PM »
There are two kinds of 'leaving'
There's the sort of 'drifting away' for (whatever reason);
and then there's the 'leaving by way of joining (something else)' -- or even just a public renunciation.

If you leave the Church -- if -- please do it the first way, and keep in touch?
kyrie eleison

Offline katherineofdixie

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Re: Evangelical missions to historically Orthodox countries
« Reply #204 on: May 07, 2014, 09:38:29 AM »
My thoughts on leaving the Church:  It's bad.

How bad?  I don't really know, but neither do I want to test it.

Agreed. One of the hardest lessons that I had to learn was that I'm not nearly as smart as I think I am. I was forced to accept the theoretical possibility that at some point, I could be wrong about something.  ;)

We know where the Church, the Body of Christ, is and has been for a couple of millennia, give or take. We know pretty much what the Church has believed, preached and taught "at all times and in all places." Why would I gamble that I know better?
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Offline Carl Kraeff (Second Chance)

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Re: Evangelical missions to historically Orthodox countries
« Reply #205 on: May 07, 2014, 10:49:16 AM »
...I think that what the blessed Father (may he pray for us) was saying was basically, "Don't judge the heterodox, God loves them too.  Remember that you're a sinner and not fit to judge anyone".  I don't take that to mean that we shouldn't reach out to them and invite them to "taste and see" the fullness of the Faith, but rather that we shouldn't condemn them all to hell as if they were conscious of the heretical nature of their teachings.  

That's how I read it also.

Me also. When I posted the quote, I had considered the context: whether the heterodox will go the hell (is there salvation outside the Orthodox Church?). I also posted it because I believe that I cannot judge anyone but myself; I took the last sentence to mean that it applies to me and that it should be considered by any given Orthodox. Whether it is applicable to katherineofdixie, James2 or anyone else is not something that I could even contemplate.
« Last Edit: May 07, 2014, 10:50:27 AM by Carl Kraeff (Second Chance) »