Jump to content


Photo
- - - - -

37 Questions about the Church

dogma tradition sacraments doctrines church

  • Please log in to reply
75 replies to this topic

#61 Rdr Andreas

Rdr Andreas

    Very Frequent Poster

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 5,032 posts
  • Orthodox Christian Member

Posted 27 November 2014 - 09:15 AM

Euthymios. I am left wondering why you became Orthodox since it clearly doesn't suit you, and how you could have accepted the catechesis you presumably had. You even deny some of the Great Feasts of the Church and Holy Tradition which is the activity of the Holy Spirit. I can understand why you received no responses from the Orthodox institutions  you wrote to: they must have had the same view of your questions as we here have - that you are not genuinely enquiring about Orthodoxy but challenging it and largely denying it and will not accept the answers you get but refuse rather to consider any views which do not coincide with the grotesquely distorted concept of Orthodoxy you have formed for yourself. The assertions in some of your questions are simply wrong. Did you come here after trying to get answers at another web site and being rebuffed?


Edited by Reader Andreas, 27 November 2014 - 09:16 AM.


#62 Euthymios

Euthymios

    Contributor

  • Members
  • PipPip
  • 63 posts
  • Orthodox Christian Member

Posted 27 November 2014 - 10:38 AM

If you agree with St John, then you cannot hold to the idea that "if it isn't in the Bible, then I won't believe it/do it". It has to be one or the other.

 

The Apostles were guided into all truth by the Holy Spirit. The Apostles appointed and taught the first bishops, well before the New Testament was written. Given that there was no written New Testament as we know it for the bulk of the First Century, how do you think the early Church spread its teachings and ensured its faithful transmission?

The New Testament was written in the first century. My argument is that if we are going to claim divine authority for a teaching, we need to be able to show it is rooted in the apostles. Otherwise any bishop can come and invent any teaching he wants and claim it's true because it comes from the Church. If it's not from the apostles, then it is another Gospel, anathematized by Galatians 1.


Edited by Euthymios, 27 November 2014 - 10:39 AM.


#63 Rdr Andreas

Rdr Andreas

    Very Frequent Poster

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 5,032 posts
  • Orthodox Christian Member

Posted 27 November 2014 - 11:48 AM

Euthymios, the Holy Spirit did not cease to be active when the last Apostle died. He is the soul of the Church and leads it into all truth as Christ promised He would. That is why as an Orthodox Christian you must not say that the ecumenical councils are only of man - if you do, you deny the work of the Holy Spirit and imply that Christ did not keep His promise. If you ascribe the activity of the Holy Spirit not to Him but  only to men, you are dangerously close to blaspheming the Holy Spirit. If you deny the doctrinal definitions of the ecumenical councils, you do not hold the Orthodox faith and are not in good order with the Church. Remember that the councils did not develop the faith but clarified and defined it in response to heresies. You must also keep the distinction between doctrine which does not develop - the Orthodox faith is Apostolic as the Creed says - and praxis which can develop within Holy Tradition. The whole thrust of your assertions/questions indicates a failure to understand this distinction.


Edited by Olga, 27 November 2014 - 12:45 PM.


#64 Euthymios

Euthymios

    Contributor

  • Members
  • PipPip
  • 63 posts
  • Orthodox Christian Member

Posted 28 November 2014 - 05:13 AM

I want to apologize to people if I have come across as argumentative. I thought free discussion, dialogue and even debate were allowed--as long as we behaved like adults and in a civil manner.  I am not aware of anything in the terms of service which forbids discussion. If the purpose of forums is for everyone to agree on everything, then I don't understand why a forum would exist.



#65 Euthymios

Euthymios

    Contributor

  • Members
  • PipPip
  • 63 posts
  • Orthodox Christian Member

Posted 28 November 2014 - 05:19 AM

Euthymios, the Holy Spirit did not cease to be active when the last Apostle died. He is the soul of the Church and leads it into all truth as Christ promised He would. That is why as an Orthodox Christian you must not say that the ecumenical councils are only of man - if you do, you deny the work of the Holy Spirit and imply that Christ did not keep His promise. If you ascribe the activity of the Holy Spirit not to Him but  only to men, you are dangerously close to blaspheming the Holy Spirit. If you deny the doctrinal definitions of the ecumenical councils, you do not hold the Orthodox faith and are not in good order with the Church. Remember that the councils did not develop the faith but clarified and defined it in response to heresies. You must also keep the distinction between doctrine which does not develop - the Orthodox faith is Apostolic as the Creed says - and praxis which can develop within Holy Tradition. The whole thrust of your assertions/questions indicates a failure to understand this distinction.

This is more circular reasoning :huh: . You need to understand that I am challenging the very claims and assumptions that the Orthodox Church makes about itself. Is the Orthodox Church the Church of Christ because it is really the Church, or is it the Church because Constantine made it the official religion of the empire and because it received empirical sanction? Your understanding of the promises of Christ are filtered through an Orthodox lens. And blasphemy of the Holy Spirit is to say Jesus was demon-possessed. Questioning men has absolutely nothing to do with it.



#66 Matthew Panchisin

Matthew Panchisin

    Very Frequent Poster

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 589 posts
  • Orthodox Christian Member

Posted 28 November 2014 - 06:27 AM

Dear Euthymios,

 

Actually when you mention "You need to understand that I am challenging the very claims and assumptions that the Orthodox Church makes about itself." you are in direct violation of the terms of use. As I understand matters, this discussion forum was not designed for that sort of a relationship.

 

I'm rather surprised that your comments are allowed to continue to be presented from the predictable foundation quoted above.

 

This is a formal request for mercy from the team of moderators, pick a side.

 

In Christ,

 

Matthew Panchisin


Edited by Matthew Panchisin, 28 November 2014 - 06:35 AM.


#67 Olga

Olga

    Moderator

  • Moderators
  • 2,827 posts
  • Orthodox Christian Member

Posted 28 November 2014 - 07:12 AM

Euthymios,

 

This forum is primarily for the discussion of Orthodoxy from its liturgical, historical, patristic and monastic traditions. There is little place for the discussion of the beliefs and practices of other Christian churches and sects, other than for comparative purposes. There is certainly no provision in the scope of the forum for Orthodox vs Protestant-type debate, as you are doing.

There are many forum members here who would be glad to help you clear up any misunderstandings you may have about what Orthodoxy teaches and believes, if you are genuinely interested in learning from them. So far, though, you are persistently attempting to "debunk" Orthodoxy, and ignoring fair and reasonable criticism of the content of your posts. This is not discussion, but a monologue, and a pretty strident one at that.

Please take heed of what I have said before posting again. If necessary, further action can, and will, be taken.

 

Olga. (forum moderator)



#68 Rdr Andreas

Rdr Andreas

    Very Frequent Poster

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 5,032 posts
  • Orthodox Christian Member

Posted 28 November 2014 - 07:45 AM

God: I am that I am

Euthymios: who says so?

God: I do

Euthymios: that's circular



#69 Euthymios

Euthymios

    Contributor

  • Members
  • PipPip
  • 63 posts
  • Orthodox Christian Member

Posted 29 November 2014 - 08:37 AM

Dear Euthymios,

 

Actually when you mention "You need to understand that I am challenging the very claims and assumptions that the Orthodox Church makes about itself." you are in direct violation of the terms of use.

Are you saying that only Orthodox people are allowed on this forum? Questioning Orthodox claims is not allowed? Can you cite and link the relevant terms of service? The kind of responses I have received are what I predicted. This is not looking good people. I'm only concerned about what is true and apostolic. I don't care about cultural customs and dead man-made traditions. I'm not going to get anything significant here, so I'll move on.


Edited by Euthymios, 29 November 2014 - 08:37 AM.


#70 Euthymios

Euthymios

    Contributor

  • Members
  • PipPip
  • 63 posts
  • Orthodox Christian Member

Posted 29 November 2014 - 08:42 AM

God: I am that I am

Euthymios: who says so?

God: I do

Euthymios: that's circular

That's a false caricature of me. Because if God made the claim, I would believe it. It's also distasteful because I read the Old Testament everyday, and love the account of Moses before the burning bush. Your comment is also slanderous, because I never said those words. The Orthodox Church is not God, so I have every right to test it's claims and customs (1Thess. 5:21).



#71 Euthymios

Euthymios

    Contributor

  • Members
  • PipPip
  • 63 posts
  • Orthodox Christian Member

Posted 29 November 2014 - 09:06 AM

Moderator,

 

You said: " This forum is primarily for the discussion of Orthodoxy from its liturgical, historical, patristic and monastic traditions. There is little place for the discussion of the beliefs and practices of other Christian churches and sects, other than for comparative purposes. "

 

M Response: Where have I reasoned and discussed beliefs and practices of other Christian churches and sects? I quoted a couple scholars verifying the point I made, and simply gave my own arguments, having never appealed to any church for them. But your statement seems contradictory. To say: "There is little place for the discussion of the beliefs and practices of other Christian churches and sects, other than for comparative purposes,"  is to contradict oneself. If discussion for "comparative purposes" is allowed, then how can you say there is "little place for discussion of the beliefs and practices" of them? This makes no sense to anyone who is rational.

 

You said: There is certainly no provision in the scope of the forum for Orthodox vs Protestant-type debate, as you are doing.

 

My Response: You are ASSUMING Protestantism in my arguments, in spite of the fact I never appealed to Protestantism. You are not capable of being rational, because when a valid argument is adduced, you have a "thought stopper" in your mind which dismisses the argument because of previous assumptions you have about heterodoxy. I never appealed to Protestantism in any of my points.

You Said:  There are many forum members here who would be glad to help you clear upany misunderstandings you may have about what Orthodoxy teaches and believes, if you are genuinely interested in learning from them.

 

My Response: I am genuinely interested. The only problem is that I haven't seen any good responses. Let me know when these Orthodox people come in. You are asking me to be irrational and sacrifice my intellect, which God gave me. It's not going to happen.

 

You Said: So far, though, you are persistently attempting to "debunk" Orthodoxy, and ignoring fair and reasonable criticism of the content of your posts. This is not discussion, but a monologue, and a pretty strident one at that.

 

My Response: I haven't seen any good responses to my points. I hope nobody takes it personally. Their responses would only be impressive to someone who is superficial and lacks critical thinking skills. Just because you have a thought, does not mean it is valid and true. What you said was bogus.

I'm out of here. I'm not going to get anything objective, rational or scholarly on this forum.

 

P.S. It is distasteful that I received a public "warning," even though I was never previously warned about anything. You should only issue a public warning and ruin a persons image and reputation on the forum, after you privately warned the offender, citing the "violation" and it's source in a private message. If it is proven he violated the terms of services, and then repeats the offense in a public forum, then and only then should he be given a public warning. Your practice here is undeveloped, unethical, and irresponsible.


Edited by Euthymios, 29 November 2014 - 09:11 AM.


#72 Euthymios

Euthymios

    Contributor

  • Members
  • PipPip
  • 63 posts
  • Orthodox Christian Member

Posted 29 November 2014 - 09:15 AM

Andreas,

 

you should also be reprimanded for having put words in my mouth which I never issued.



#73 Olga

Olga

    Moderator

  • Moderators
  • 2,827 posts
  • Orthodox Christian Member

Posted 29 November 2014 - 09:45 AM

Euthymios
 

Despite warnings from moderators, formal and informal, you persist in posting in a combative, contentious, judgemental and inflammatory way. This is completely unacceptable.

 

I have therefore moved this thread to the Special Consideration section, where every post submitted by anyone will need to be approved by a moderator. This is not censorship, but a measure to ensure that discussion proceeds in an orderly, civil and non-contentious manner, as required by the forum rules.

 

Olga. (forum moderator)



#74 Euthymios

Euthymios

    Contributor

  • Members
  • PipPip
  • 63 posts
  • Orthodox Christian Member

Posted 07 December 2014 - 04:42 AM

The reason why I have rejected many responses, is not because I am not genuine, or because I am of bad will, but because the responses are not satisfactory. They may be impressive to someone who functions at a suferficial level, but not me. Sorry, don't take it personally.



#75 Euthymios

Euthymios

    Contributor

  • Members
  • PipPip
  • 63 posts
  • Orthodox Christian Member

Posted 07 December 2014 - 05:38 AM

Whenever people ask questions, you should treat them with respect (like they humans), instead of questioning their motives and trying to psychoanalyze them (this is not about you). Since you are not clairovoyant and cannot read hearts, you need to be bibiical, practical, and realistic about this. You need to follow the biblical teaching. "be ready always to give an answer to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you with meekness and fear..." (1Peter 3:15). Christ said, "Give to him that asketh thee, and from him that would borrow of thee turn not thou away." (Matthew 5:42).

 

Don't trust your thoughts about people, be biblical in how you relate to them.



#76 Fabio Lins

Fabio Lins

    Regular Poster

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 139 posts

Posted 30 December 2014 - 02:59 PM

Euthymios,

 

you made lots of judgments and bar psychoanalisys of forum members, of all monks over 16 centuries, of saints, and to some point even of Scripture writers when you claim to know their motivations.

 

And you are surprised that people do that to you? It's far easier to psychoanalyze *you*, even through the Internet, then the minds of men or women who first decided to go to the desert.

 

So, for your ludicrous claim that monasticism is an Indian institution transplanted to Christianity.

 

1) Let's suppose for the sake of argument that it was. You are writing with a Roman alphabet created by pagans. The paper of your Bible was created by pagan Chinese. The very ideology of democracy most of us live in was created in pagan Greece, informed by a pagan worldview. The cherumbim found in the Temple ordained by God looked awfullty similar to sphynxes probably because Hebrews first saw that image while in Egypt. God makes all things new and infusing His Grace in them make purify them. Get over it.

 

2) Monasticism as we know it today probably started in Egypt. You could have (wrongly) claimed it was influenced by Egyptian practices but I guess India is more exotic. So tonsure looks like something they did in Isis cults? Sticking to the Bible looks awfully like what the Pharisees did with the Scriptures when "challenging" Jesus assumptions about Himself. Analogy is not causality. But since you hide that bad assumption (analogy implies causality) under the argument of "probability", you have to prove that said primitive Christian Church who were, according to you so zealot to the point of being against icons and veneration of the saints, all of a sudden decided that they would copy Indian pagan organizations and throw in some Isis cult rituals for good measure.

 

3) There is no cenobitic monastic life in the Gospel but there is monastic life as some forum members showed. It's who have to prove that living like John the Baptist, St. Paul and Elias is good while they are isolated, but if they could get together to live helping each other in their respective ministries that would be paganism. Or that one woman living apart from the world in prayer and devotion is good enough for God to be born of Her, but if 10 of them lived together that would be a reenactment of Isis mysteries.

 

4) There are monks who are missionaries, like Paul, there are monks who live secluded silent lives, like the Virgin Mary. While Christianity had few members, there was no need for people who take it seriously to get together because they were *already* small self-helping communities. Once it became popular, some felt the need to build smaller communities, but because they were holy and humble, these smaller communities were not to shun Christians weaker in faith, but to strengthen them.

 

As regarding the titles of Patriarchs, it's the honor due to the Apostles. Of course the Apostles wouldn't use them, because they are the ones who are great and in being truly great you both deny honor to yourself and acknowledge to those who are due. The less honor you have, the more you have to acknowledge the true honor of others. We respect the Apostolic grace that is in the current successors of the Apostles. True, some of them are personally unworthy of that, but the honor over them is greater than their personal misery.  We don't leave Christ just because we see Judas in His group. 

 

As for icons, read the how God ordained the interior of the Temple. There are several celestial figures there, and the Apostles *and* Jesus worshipped there. People did not venerate by kissing, but they did venerate them. Maybe two thousand years from now 3 hops will substitute kissing as a show of affection and then people will give 3 hops before their children, their parents and icons. The externals may change, the spirit doesn't.

 

God *demanded* veneration of nothing less than the image of a snake to provide healing for the Hebrews in the desert. Nobody seemed to confuse that with idol worship. Actually, as God is very pedagogical, the fact that He condemned people for worshiping the golden calf and healed those who venerated the snake on the Cross and ordained the images of Cherubim in the Temple, He Himself is teaching the difference between worship and veneration. Today, instead of the snake, we are lucky enough to be able to behold the Lamb of God Himself, the actual "thing" and not the symbol only. We should rejoice in that, instead of slander it. 







Also tagged with one or more of these keywords: dogma, tradition, sacraments, doctrines, church

0 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users