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Attitude towards heretics

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#21 Kuksha W.

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Posted 27 May 2015 - 10:24 PM

I realized I had not been on here for a few days, and I thought I would add something to what Herman Blaydoe wrote. 


1 Peter 3:15 is a great verse, and helpful to those who have sanctified God in their heart, and who have gentleness and the fear of God. I am not there yet. In fact, I have a lot of making up to do.


When I was first baptized, I thought it was my duty to "be prepared," but I probably pushed more people away from the Church because of my untamed zeal than I want to know about; speaking in a passionate, not yet purified and unenlightened manner is dangerous for all involved. In reality, someone like myself is too incompetent to talk about religion to those outside of the Church. People like myself will never convert anyone, or help in the process. I wish I had realized this over 20 years ago when I first converted. 


It is likely most, if not all Orthodox Christians can fulfill this requirement (except for a few sobs I know who are destined for hellfire). I am not there yet.


When I meet the criteria for this verse: experience in hesychia ("Sanctify the Lord God in your hearts," according to Way of a Pilgrim), and have the gentleness and fear of God with which to speak ("with meekness and fear") then maybe I will think for a short time about whether or not I should ask for a blessing to preach, or at the very least actively engage in dialogue with any heterodox that may be passing by. 


That is all for now. I forgot how exhausting internet conversations can be!

#22 Moses Anthony

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Posted 03 June 2015 - 01:08 AM

In my readings (of an Orthodox Prof. from the Northeast, who has talked frequently with Bishop Maximos), I've come across a thought that's very fitting to this conversation.  His Grace's words -quoting loosely- were: When the Christian who has knowledge encounters an unbeliever who is harsh in his treatment of the Christian, he must love him.  Adverse (bad) thoughts concerning the bad person is like sending evil energy to them, and will often result in even worse behavior towards you.

The end game has to be kept in mind as the Apostle Paul wrote. "The Lord's bondservant must not be quarrelsome, but be kind to all, able   to teach, patient when wronged,  with gentleness correcting those who are in opposition, if perhaps God may grant them repentance leading to the knowledge of the truth, and they may come to their senses and escape the snare of the devil, having been held captive by him to do his will."  Obedience I never easy, as we don't like our fleshly ego to hurt. But; the fruit of righteousness is far greater than any momentary sufferings. I'm working on this even as I type.  

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