Church and identity

minasoliman

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Okay, I'm confused.  Can you give me a system of beliefs you personally believe in?  What are in detail, "the basics of Christianity" for you?  "Genesis, Matthew, that sort of thing" to me sounded like you were supportive of Scriptures as your primary source.  Okay, I mentioned, as long as Scriptures can be understood under the Orthodox Church, not under other interpretations like the gazillions of Protestant denominations.  But when mentioning "the Creed," you're giving me other creeds, so let me ask you, what is YOUR creed, or YOUR beliefs? (500 words or less....j/k)
 

JamesRottnek

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Salpy, you may well be right.  I don't know enough about them to know whether or not this is close to their belief, I had in fact not heard of this creed until this thread, when I went looking online and found this.  I learned, because of Rafa's posts, to always be careful of anything Nestorian.

Anastasia, assuming this creed is in fact the creed you were talking about (and if it is not, I would be greatly indebted if you would link me to the one you were talking about or if you would type it into a post), let's go through line by line.

"We believe in one God, the Father, who upholds everything, the Creator of all things that are seen and unseen."
Vs. "We believe in One God, the Father Almighty, Maker of heaven and earth, and of all things visible and invisible."  This is very close.  I don't know exactly whether or not "who upholds everything" being included and "Almighty" being disincluded matters, but I lean towards not so much.  The rest of it is basically the same, especially since I have regularly seen "Creator" used instead of "Maker" with the Orthodox Creed just being more precise by including "of heaven and earth" wheras the Nestorians disinclude it, but I don't think it matters since by say "of all things visible and invisible" with the translation of the Nestorian Creed just being slightly different in word choice than my translation (not the one I made, seeing as I don't speak ancient greek, but rather the one I use outside of Church) of the Orthdoox Creed.

"[We believe] in one Lord God, and in Jesus [Christ], the only son of God, [the firstborn] of all beings, who… in the beginning was not created but begotten by the Father;"
Vs. "and in one Lord Jesus Christ, the Son of God, the Only-Begotten, begotten of the Father before all worlds"  These may well mean fundamentally the same things, but the way words are used often subtly suggest different meanings because of nuances in the words.  As such, I would say that the Nestorian Creed here is sketchy at best.

" [true God] of true God… by whose hand the [aeons] were fashioned and everything was created,"
Vs. "Light of Light, Very God of Very God, begotten, not made; of one essence with the Father; by Whom all things were made"  I would note it leavs out "of one eseence with the Father" which is a pretty big difference, and could lead to a variety of heretical views.  But aside from that, it is fairly similar - but again I would point you to the fact that words have nuances.

"he who for the sake of men and for our salvation descended from the heavens and clothed himself in a body by the Holy Spirit, and became man and entered the womb;"
Vs. Who for us men and for our salvationcame down from heaven and was incarnate of the Holy Spirit and the Virgin Mary, and was made man; "  How the Nestorian Creed is constructed, it says that the Holy Spirit formed a body and placed it in the womb of the Virgin, it also suggests that God merely took on flesh, as opposed to truly and in every sense of the word BECAME man, it suggests he did not have his whole humanity.

"who was born of Mary, the virgin, and [who] suffered agony and [was] raised on the cross [in] the days of Pontius Pilate; and [was buried] and ascended and sits on the right hand of the Father and is ready to come (again) to judge the dead and the living."
Vs. "And was crucified also for us under Pontius Pilate, and suffered and was buried; the third day He rose again according to the Scriptures; and ascended into heaven, and sits at the right hand of the Father; and He shall come again with glory to judge the living and the dead; Whose Kingdom shall have no end."  Aside from leaving out the phrase "Whose Kingdom shall have no end", which is a pretty significant phrase, I don't really have anything objectionable in this one, even for the most part the word structure.

"And [we believe] in the Spirit of Truth, the Holy Spirit, who went forth from the Father, the Holy Spirit who gives life."
Vs. "And I believe in the Holy Spirit, the Lord and Giver of Life, Who proceeds from the Father, Who with the Father and the Son together is worshiped and glorified,  Who spoke by the prophets."  I think the lack of detail in the Nestorian Creed on the Holy Spirit, may well show a lack of respect for the Spirit as a truly equal part of the Godhood, of course this would in part depend on the date of the creed.
 

Anastasia1

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minasoliman said:
Okay, I'm confused.  Can you give me a system of beliefs you personally believe in?  What are in detail, "the basics of Christianity" for you?  "Genesis, Matthew, that sort of thing" to me sounded like you were supportive of Scriptures as your primary source.  Okay, I mentioned, as long as Scriptures can be understood under the Orthodox Church, not under other interpretations like the gazillions of Protestant denominations.  But when mentioning "the Creed," you're giving me other creeds, so let me ask you, what is YOUR creed, or YOUR beliefs? (500 words or less....j/k)
When I mention other creeds, you have to understand that I grew up Lutheran, then the fam was non-denominational, I studied Catholicism which I felt more at home in except for the Pope and stuff that I could not accept much less be dogmatic about and at this time I got rides to various churches from my dorm so I could go to church somewhere at least and listened too much to the evangelical Protestants dogmatic approach to how faith should be understood and lived that I just didn't feel/fit, fam was Nazarene, and I tried a loosely Baptist church along with experience in a Messianic church-where I still have friends and attend services but disagree with some of the theology and ecclesiology but totally respect that they look at what folks back in the day wrote along with the cultural context rather than just looking at John Doe's latest revelation of the decade. I don't know my church history all that well, but I knew there are a variety of creeds. So yes, I have read a variety of creeds. I also hurt my back and had things that came up on weekends so that I could not attend service much since mid March, and just got back last weekend, I lost my copy of the liturgy book, and forgot about the site I found the text online at. So I googled the start of the creed to see what came up.

If you are hoping for dogmatic statements about denominations, I don't think I have it in me to give you. I can affirm everything I hear in the liturgy. I think there is a lot of wisdom I have heard from Orthodox priests, but I hold my reservations about things that are different until they are beyond a shadow of doubt logical and undeniable. My approach to religion includes looking at what is known and can be known and how this relates to the universe and any sense of order or purpose-either there is a God (who must be definition of god be only one diety) or there is no meaning or purpose to anything in this world but some arbitrary state of being. Either there is no hope for mankind, or there must be some way that a God who designed this world and created us with a purpose can make us worthy of His presence-this is evident by examining the history and behavior of mankind as well as personal reflection. So either all are without hope or there is a savior/messiah/redeemer. The only one that I have heard of that seems reasonable is Christ. Now the churches have been the barers of Christ's truth since they and the synagogues split further way back in the day. (I read that there was some change in the way the Roman empire treated one of the groups and the other became disassociated.) So while scripture, by telling of Jesus, contains the message of salvation, there is context that we do not understand by being so removed from that time. Understanding the context of the Bible (and early church fathers were closer to this) we can better understand who God is much like we can understand Him more by spending time with Him. Both help us know who He is. This is something that the Orthodox churches have a strong connection to. While I am not totally committed to the doctrines of the Orthodox church, they are more acceptable than the Catholic church and I have not found anything that I definitely cannot accept. I don't know how I will end up with the Orthodox church in 20 years, but time in and with the Orthodox church will help me be someone who experiences God in ways that appeal to me. There is a quietness in some of the Orthodox that I wish I had.

Until further notice, I would but a futurist/historicist in terms of eschatology, accept padeo or believers baptism but think it should be in the name of the Father, Son, and Spirit, think that miracles happen but not everyone gets physically healed by having faith, think that people who speak in tongues as a prayer language should describe it as something other than baptism of the spirit, my soteriology is fairly Lutheran, I don't see a probably with some partial evolution within related kinds during the process of creation (not all jackels are the same species but may have come from a classification above), and I heard that the Bible may round to large numbers or that the flood only happened in the known world but the point of the Bible stories/passages still remains and the flood was wide enough that many peoples across the world have a flood story.I think that salvation is not limited to a church but that church life helps us experience and grow in Christ. I am certain that you can correct me on certain points, but I would prefer to learn slowly so that I will better absorb material. I spent too long trying to be a perfect Christian in someone else's eyes. I think that loving God and others is the highest aim of anyone in this life and otherwise the most important thing we can do is to prepare ourselves for the next life (the afterlife), but I am also told by a variety of people that I put too much responsibility on myself (by mom, an old college councilor, and a friend). I can't just change overnight to please someone new. (AKA, I'm scared you guys are going to jump on me for saying something unOrthodox in this paragraph because if I honestly believed that I had to be something that I can't be right now to be saved, I would not take it well.)

Sorry, I know I went a bit over 500. :p
 

Volnutt

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FWIW, I've never seem you say anything which struck me as totally out of the ball park. I know you believe what's in the Creeds.

Beyond this, you might be being to hard on yourself, yes. Just keep reading up and praying. I don't think anyone here is going to jump on you, we want to help you. No one is going to force you to believe something you honestly can't. I've run into things about Orthodoxy in the past that I've honestly seen as "deal breakers," and some today that may develop into those. But I got over my apparent deal breakers in the past and carried on.

Will I do that with my current deal breakers? I don't know. Maybe I won't become Orthodox because of them. I'd be sad if that's ultimately what happens, but that's the way it goes. In the end no one can decide but you (unless you're Calvinist :p).

But, no matter what happens, I know this. God loves me (and you) and as long as I'm faithful, He'll direct my steps , wherever they lead me. He'll direct yours too.

I hope that helps at all.
 

JamesRottnek

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When you're Calvinist, Volnutt, you don't even get to say God loves you and will direct your path.  You get to say "God hates me and has a terrible plan for my life" 'plan' of course meaning hardwired path you are required to follow.
 

Volnutt

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JamesRottnek said:
When you're Calvinist, Volnutt, you don't even get to say God loves you and will direct your path.  You get to say "God hates me and has a terrible plan for my life" 'plan' of course meaning hardwired path you are required to follow.
Only if you aren't in the elect. But anyway, I was kidding. I'm not Calvinist.
 

JamesRottnek

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I know, I just love that joke, but almost never have an opportunity to say it
 

Volnutt

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JamesRottnek said:
I know, I just love that joke, but almost never have an opportunity to say it
lol
 

minasoliman

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At the risk of sounding like you should be lax, which is not what I'm saying, but I think you are too hard on yourself.  Continue in path you're in.  Some of the things you say, (like the flood and evolution) I also struggled with as well and found myself not in agreement with my own confession father (and that's coming from a cradle Orthodox).

Pray and take your time:
I am certain that you can correct me on certain points, but I would prefer to learn slowly so that I will better absorb material.
And if there's any questions, many here are willing to help, but your spiritual adviser is your most important source.

God bless.

PS Now in Twitter limit or less, describe how "I can't believe it's not butter" not butter.
 

deusveritasest

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Anastasia1 said:
Confession: I'm shallow and have not felt dogmatic about anything other than the very basics of Christianity in at least 4 years.
What are "the very basics of Christianity"?
 

deusveritasest

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Anastasia1 said:
minasoliman said:
Anastasia1 said:
deusveritasest said:
Picking a church based on who best speaks to your ethnicity and culture is shallow. You have to determine whose dogmatic tradition you agree with.
Confession: I'm shallow and have not felt dogmatic about anything other than the very basics of Christianity in at least 4 years. I wish I felt more like that. I could spend a lifetime trying to find every doctrine out, but I would rather move on with the basics of living and value historical bases of tradition.
Let me ask you this.  What are the very basics of Christianity for you?
Genesis, Matthew, that sort of thing.
That's a very vague answer. What about Matthew?
 

deusveritasest

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Robb said:
deusveritasest said:
Robb said:
JamesRottnek said:
Robb, just a quick comment.  I don't know whether or not you meant this, but it sounded like you were saying that he really should adopt the Coptic/Armenian/whatever culture if he joins their church.  If you were not saying this I apologize, but if you were, I think that might be going a bit too far.  Of course he should not expect them to adopt his culture, but neither should they expect him to give up being Swedish (I believe from other posts he's Swedish) just to be part of the Coptic Church or Armenian Church, etc.
No, I didn't say that he should adopt these OO cultures if he goes OO.  I meant that he should show respect for the culture of the parish that eh finds himself in and not expect that they jettison their ethnic heritage just because he converted.  There should be an atmosphere of mutual respect which is, of course a two way street.
Except that you have opposed in the past ethnic churches making any effort to create an atmosphere that at all reflects the culture of the convert.
No, I support ethnic parishes maintaining their own identity and culture and not trying to overtly dilute it in order to appear more American, Canadian, etc... I have no

thing against providing materials and doing liturgies in the native language of the area in order to help those who are either not of that culture or have become assimilated into the host society.  
That's inconsistent with post #23 in this thread:

http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,28440.0.html
 

Anastasia1

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deusveritasest said:
Anastasia1 said:
The local Coptic priest described the Council of Chalcedon dispute as primarily a matter of translation.
::)
That is nice that you can roll your eyes at something I was told by a priest who was studying/active in Christianity more than twice as long as you have been alive, but given your two other posts toward me, I would suggest that you read my very long post that was in reply to that very thing that you asked.
 

Anastasia1

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minasoliman said:
At the risk of sounding like you should be lax, which is not what I'm saying, but I think you are too hard on yourself.  Continue in path you're in.  Some of the things you say, (like the flood and evolution) I also struggled with as well and found myself not in agreement with my own confession father (and that's coming from a cradle Orthodox).

Pray and take your time:
I am certain that you can correct me on certain points, but I would prefer to learn slowly so that I will better absorb material.
And if there's any questions, many here are willing to help, but your spiritual adviser is your most important source.

God bless.

PS Now in Twitter limit or less, describe how "I can't believe it's not butter" not butter.
Thank you. I am not good at the moderately hard on myself stuff. Moderation is not always my strength. I also need to talk to the new deacon since the old one left a while ago.

Hmmm: "God's gooey goodness in a tub."
 

Volnutt

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I'd say, "Satan's molten paste of darkness," but too each their own...
 

Anastasia1

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Volnutt said:
I'd say, "Satan's molten paste of darkness," but too each their own...
How should I know? Why should I care? Isn't that from a song...
 

Volnutt

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Yeah, but it's too late to say you're sorry.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f5IRI4oHKNU
 

minasoliman

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lol!

"A self-contradictory product that becomes believable when reading the ingredients."
 
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