Church Invisible

primuspilus

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FountainPen said:
PeterTheAleut said:
FountainPen said:
PeterTheAleut said:
FountainPen said:
PeterTheAleut said:
Those who have died in Christ and await the resurrection of their bodies at the last day... Based on what you know about us, do you think we would count them as members of the Church right now, even though they're invisible to us?
Peter, that's a ridiculous question given that they are quite literally, invisible -- and given also that it's common practise (for you) to petition those reposed in Christ, to pray with you, to God.
Why is it a ridiculous question? Because you just don't want to answer questions? I have a purpose for asking the question that you think you're discerning though you're very clearly not. So why don't you just answer the question without prejudging it as though you know my agenda?

Are the saints who have died members of the Church, or are they not?
None of us can know that except God. None of can know what's in the heart of a person while they are on earth; the visible church is full of both true Christians and those in church for other reasons. Howcan we presume to know such a thing?
That's not what I asked, FountainPen.

The saints who have died in Christ--I'm talking about those whom God knows as saints and who are no longer with us in the flesh--are they members of the Church as Orthodox know it--visible, invisible, I don't care--or not?
I don't know if they are members of the church, as Orthodox know it -- i'm not Orthodox.
Yes, they are members of the Church. The saints arent dead. :)

PP
 

PeterTheAleut

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FountainPen said:
PeterTheAleut said:
FountainPen said:
PeterTheAleut said:
FountainPen said:
PeterTheAleut said:
Those who have died in Christ and await the resurrection of their bodies at the last day... Based on what you know about us, do you think we would count them as members of the Church right now, even though they're invisible to us?
Peter, that's a ridiculous question given that they are quite literally, invisible -- and given also that it's common practise (for you) to petition those reposed in Christ, to pray with you, to God.
Why is it a ridiculous question? Because you just don't want to answer questions? I have a purpose for asking the question that you think you're discerning though you're very clearly not. So why don't you just answer the question without prejudging it as though you know my agenda?

Are the saints who have died members of the Church, or are they not?
None of us can know that except God. None of can know what's in the heart of a person while they are on earth; the visible church is full of both true Christians and those in church for other reasons. Howcan we presume to know such a thing?
That's not what I asked, FountainPen.

The saints who have died in Christ--I'm talking about those whom God knows as saints and who are no longer with us in the flesh--are they members of the Church as Orthodox know it--visible, invisible, I don't care--or not?
I don't know if they are members of the church, as Orthodox know it -- i'm not Orthodox.
Then why did you call my question a "ridiculous question" as though everyone knows that the Orthodox consider them equal members of the Church as evidenced by our "common practise to petition those reposed in Christ, to pray with [us], to God."? The simple fact is that we deem those who have died in Christ to still be members of the Church, even though they are invisible, which kinda burns up your straw man idea that we believe only in the visible Church.
 

FountainPen

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PeterTheAleut said:
FountainPen said:
PeterTheAleut said:
FountainPen said:
PeterTheAleut said:
FountainPen said:
PeterTheAleut said:
Those who have died in Christ and await the resurrection of their bodies at the last day... Based on what you know about us, do you think we would count them as members of the Church right now, even though they're invisible to us?
Peter, that's a ridiculous question given that they are quite literally, invisible -- and given also that it's common practise (for you) to petition those reposed in Christ, to pray with you, to God.
Why is it a ridiculous question? Because you just don't want to answer questions? I have a purpose for asking the question that you think you're discerning though you're very clearly not. So why don't you just answer the question without prejudging it as though you know my agenda?

Are the saints who have died members of the Church, or are they not?
None of us can know that except God. None of can know what's in the heart of a person while they are on earth; the visible church is full of both true Christians and those in church for other reasons. Howcan we presume to know such a thing?
That's not what I asked, FountainPen.

The saints who have died in Christ--I'm talking about those whom God knows as saints and who are no longer with us in the flesh--are they members of the Church as Orthodox know it--visible, invisible, I don't care--or not?
I don't know if they are members of the church, as Orthodox know it -- i'm not Orthodox.
Then why did you call my question a "ridiculous question" as though everyone knows that the Orthodox consider them equal members of the Church as evidenced by our "common practise to petition those reposed in Christ, to pray with [us], to God."? The simple fact is that we deem those who have died in Christ to still be members of the Church, even though they are invisible, which kinda burns up your straw man idea that we believe only in the visible Church.
Can you tell me where i said that Orthodoxy "only" believes in the visible church? I think i said it gives more of an emphasis to the visible church.
 

primuspilus

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FountainPen said:
PeterTheAleut said:
FountainPen said:
PeterTheAleut said:
FountainPen said:
PeterTheAleut said:
FountainPen said:
PeterTheAleut said:
Those who have died in Christ and await the resurrection of their bodies at the last day... Based on what you know about us, do you think we would count them as members of the Church right now, even though they're invisible to us?
Peter, that's a ridiculous question given that they are quite literally, invisible -- and given also that it's common practise (for you) to petition those reposed in Christ, to pray with you, to God.
Why is it a ridiculous question? Because you just don't want to answer questions? I have a purpose for asking the question that you think you're discerning though you're very clearly not. So why don't you just answer the question without prejudging it as though you know my agenda?

Are the saints who have died members of the Church, or are they not?
None of us can know that except God. None of can know what's in the heart of a person while they are on earth; the visible church is full of both true Christians and those in church for other reasons. Howcan we presume to know such a thing?
That's not what I asked, FountainPen.

The saints who have died in Christ--I'm talking about those whom God knows as saints and who are no longer with us in the flesh--are they members of the Church as Orthodox know it--visible, invisible, I don't care--or not?
I don't know if they are members of the church, as Orthodox know it -- i'm not Orthodox.
Then why did you call my question a "ridiculous question" as though everyone knows that the Orthodox consider them equal members of the Church as evidenced by our "common practise to petition those reposed in Christ, to pray with [us], to God."? The simple fact is that we deem those who have died in Christ to still be members of the Church, even though they are invisible, which kinda burns up your straw man idea that we believe only in the visible Church.
Can you tell me where i said that Orthodoxy "only" believes in the visible church? I think i said it gives more of an emphasis to the visible church.
I think that the whole hub-aloo is becuase so many folks totally discount the Visible Church, so we immidately come to the defense of it, sometimes to the detriment of the Invisible part. Such as it was  with my defense anyways....

PP
 

Volnutt

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FountainPen said:
Volnutt said:
FountainPen said:
Volnutt said:
FormerReformer said:
Most Evangelicals, for example, deny the ability of God's Grace to act in the world through physical vehicles such as bread and wine, marriages, ordination, holy unction, relics, icons, etc.
While at the same time insisting that God works primarily through a physical book.
God works through a physical book?! Oh really? I thought, in fact, i've heard, read and seen evidence on many occasions that God actually works through His Holy Spirit. If there was a book, an actual physical book that God works through it would surely have to be under lock and key for the stampede of miracle seekers would be catastrophic if it were say, somewhere in an ordinary house?
God works through both. If he only worked through the Spirit, we wouldn't even need the book. You're making false dichotomies again.
Vol, you can't say that. The book itself isn't anything more than printing, pages and binding -- it's just a book. God works through His word, it's His word that's inspired. I know i'm being picky but it's only the word that matters and that's an important point to make.

We don't actually need the book either. We have the word of God and that's an amazing blessing but we don't need it. All we need is the Spirit of God -- the power unto salvation.
I didn't say the book is more than a book, the Gospel itself isn't more than words if you don't believe it. I also didn't say God cannot save apart from the Bible, of course He can. But under normal circumstances, it's one of the mediums He works through. Some one in a prison camp or something where there are no Bibles may not need one, but those of us who have access to them and don't use them will have quite the time trying growing toward Christ. I see the valid distinction you want to make, but to me in this context it leads to missing the forest for the trees (now I'm one cliche over, darn...)

We can apply this same reasoning to the Visible Church. The Thief on the Cross was not baptized and had nothing to do with the Visible Church and yet he was saved.
 

Volnutt

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FountainPen said:
HandmaidenofGod said:
FountainPen said:
Peter, that's a ridiculous question given that they are quite literally, invisible -- and given also that it's common practise (for you) to petition those reposed in Christ, to pray with you, to God.

The 'invisible' church i'm talking about is  "....within you" (Luke 17:21) and one where Jesus Christ himself is the chief corner stone, where the building grows. (Ephesians 2: 19-21)
FountainPen, I am interested in hearing your definitions, as per my post above:

HandmaidenofGod said:
FountainPen said:
For what it's worth then...

The Orthodox church makes such a song and dance of where it is and the fact that She Is The One True Only Apostolic and Holy Catholic Church and separates herself from others of the same faith, no less, who she is not in communion with while making grand statements that ekklesia and the companionship of others is of paramount importance to her and indeed the very definition of church to some -- or so i'm led to believe.

And yes, i've noted the nod that's occasionally given to the existence of Christians outside The Church.
Okay, so we're familiar with the Orthodox Church's definition of "Church," but what about yours?

You've mentioned the terms spiritual church and physical church. For Orthodox Christians, the Church is both spiritual and physical. It is physical, in that we have the church buildings, the clergy, the Liturgy, etc. It is spiritual, in that whenever we pray, we are joining in communion and worship with all of the saints, and our prayers are being lifted up along with all of the other Orthodox Christians praying with us.

When we are participating in the Liturgy, we are going beyond space and time. We are not just remembering Christ's crucifixion and resurrection as an event of the past, but as the here and now.

So my question to you is what are your definitions of these terms?
Sorry HandmaidenofGod, i thought that answer would do you and Peter, both.

The invisible church is one that can't be known by us by empirical means but thankfully is known to God.

The visible church is one where people gather who profess Christ but who none of us can tell who is and who isn't really His, and neither should we try. Therefore, there will be a mix of people who gather such as the examples given to us in the word.

The church is compared to a floor where there is wheat and chaff (Matt. iii. 12)
The church is compared to a field where there are tares as well as good seed (Matt 13:24, 25)
The church is compared to a net, which gathers bad and good fish (Matthew 13:47)
The church is compared to a house where there are vessels of every kind some to honour and some to dishonor (2 Tim 2:20)

This is why the spiritual, invisible church is the bride He is coming back for.
You assume that those Christians who will ultimately not be saved are not still part of the Bride, an assumption which Orthodoxy rejects and I'm not sure is in evidence from those passages.
 

PeterTheAleut

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FountainPen said:
PeterTheAleut said:
FountainPen said:
PeterTheAleut said:
FountainPen said:
PeterTheAleut said:
FountainPen said:
PeterTheAleut said:
Those who have died in Christ and await the resurrection of their bodies at the last day... Based on what you know about us, do you think we would count them as members of the Church right now, even though they're invisible to us?
Peter, that's a ridiculous question given that they are quite literally, invisible -- and given also that it's common practise (for you) to petition those reposed in Christ, to pray with you, to God.
Why is it a ridiculous question? Because you just don't want to answer questions? I have a purpose for asking the question that you think you're discerning though you're very clearly not. So why don't you just answer the question without prejudging it as though you know my agenda?

Are the saints who have died members of the Church, or are they not?
None of us can know that except God. None of can know what's in the heart of a person while they are on earth; the visible church is full of both true Christians and those in church for other reasons. Howcan we presume to know such a thing?
That's not what I asked, FountainPen.

The saints who have died in Christ--I'm talking about those whom God knows as saints and who are no longer with us in the flesh--are they members of the Church as Orthodox know it--visible, invisible, I don't care--or not?
I don't know if they are members of the church, as Orthodox know it -- i'm not Orthodox.
Then why did you call my question a "ridiculous question" as though everyone knows that the Orthodox consider them equal members of the Church as evidenced by our "common practise to petition those reposed in Christ, to pray with [us], to God."? The simple fact is that we deem those who have died in Christ to still be members of the Church, even though they are invisible, which kinda burns up your straw man idea that we believe only in the visible Church.
Can you tell me where i said that Orthodoxy "only" believes in the visible church? I think i said it gives more of an emphasis to the visible church.
Well, the way you've been ranting on this thread implies to me that you see us as guilty of more than just emphasizing the visible Church at the expense of the invisible (as if such a dichotomy exists).

What you need to see is the much larger context. To those, like you, who disparage the idea that the Church could be visible and emphasize the concept of an invisible Church, we defend the very visible nature of the Church in a way that looks as if we place our emphasis on the visible Church at the expense of the invisible. With others, however, who focus their attention too much on the visible institutions of the Church, such as we often see in the Roman Catholic Church (and sometimes even among the Orthodox), we emphasize in our defense that the Church is first a manifestation of an invisible mystery: the mystery of Christ in us through the indwelling of His Holy Spirit to the glory of God the Father. Quite naturally, we speak differently to different people so that all may come to a deeper appreciation of all that the Holy Orthodox Church is. Just don't take our words to others and make them out as if they're addressing you.
 

jnorm888

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FountainPen said:
PeterTheAleut said:
FountainPen said:
PeterTheAleut said:
FountainPen said:
PeterTheAleut said:
Achronos said:
FountainPen said:
PeterTheAleut said:
FountainPen said:
Asteriktos said:
FountainPen said:
I'm not for one moment suggesting that there is no need for a physical church or that the physical church is not important. I'm just suggesting that the physical church is not The Bride, but the spiritual church is.
It seems to me that it'd be both spiritual and physical. When St. Paul addressed a letter to "the church of God in Corinth, to those sanctified in Christ Jesus and called to be holy, together with all those everywhere who call on the name of our Lord" (1 Cor. 1:2), he seemed to be both addressing specific people in a specific geographical location, and yet also addressing all Christians in all places who are united mystically/mysteriously/spiritually/etc.
But Orthodoxy has the emphasis firmly placed on the physical visible church.
What makes you think this?
It just does and you know it does.
Best argument EVAR
Yeah, right. ::) ;)
I didn't want to answer because i'm not really interested in debating or winning an argument or continually be accused of firing out bible verses, which is such a predictable and slack defense of any position especially since patristic quotes can also be used in this way -- and often are here.
So why do you lump me in with everyone else? I asked a question because I sincerely wanted to know why you think the Orthodox Church places her emphasis firmly on the physical visible Church, not because I want to debate you or throw patristic verses at you. You accuse us of holding a particular point of view and of using debate tactics we call you out for. The least you could do is back up your accusations when asked, not just reply to my questions with more accusations.
Because it seemed to me as though you were asking a question you knew the answer to because the answer was obvious. I couldn't think of a good reason for you doing that. I apologise.

PeterTheAleut said:
FountainPen said:
For what it's worth then...

The Orthodox church makes such a song and dance of where it is and the fact that She Is The One True Only Apostolic and Holy Catholic Church and separates herself from others of the same faith, no less, who she is not in communion with while making grand statements that ekklesia and the companionship of others is of paramount importance to her and indeed the very definition of church to some -- or so i'm led to believe.

And yes, i've noted the nod that's occasionally given to the existence of Christians outside The Church.
You think you could give a more rational, less emotional response than this? Angry isn't very convincing.
Yes. Here is the less emotional response.


The Orthodox church firmly states where it is and the fact that She Is The One True Only Apostolic and Holy Catholic Church and separates herself from others of the same faith, who she is not in communion with while making statements that ekklesia and the companionship of others is of paramount importance to her.

The church does occasionally mention the existence of Christians outside The Church.
Those who have died in Christ and await the resurrection of their bodies at the last day... Based on what you know about us, do you think we would count them as members of the Church right now, even though they're invisible to us?
Peter, that's a ridiculous question given that they are quite literally, invisible -- and given also that it's common practise (for you) to petition those reposed in Christ, to pray with you, to God.

The 'invisible' church i'm talking about is  "....within you" (Luke 17:21) and one where Jesus Christ himself is the chief corner stone, where the building grows. (Ephesians 2: 19-21)
Does "within you" mean separate and independent from Christ? Does it mean not being in communion with Jesus and the Apostles and their church plants?


When the Angel visited the Roman centurion in the book of Acts, did he tell him to go and start an independent christian group not in communion with what Jesus already started with the Apostles? Or did he tell him to go see Peter?


When Jesus spoke to Saul/Paul on the road to Damascus, did he tell him to go and start an independent group not in communion with what He already started? Or did he tell him to go see Ananias? I'm not looking at the text and so I probably got some of the details wrong, but the gist is the same.


Yes, Jesus is the chief corner stone, but don't forget that this Chief cornerstone is God Incarnate! Which means that He is not just Invisible only!

You see, the Docetists believed that Jesus's physical body was an illusion. You are making a similar mistake. For when the building grows is the physical aspect of the building only an illusion? This is what you seem to be saying. And if you aren't saying this then it would seem as if you are seeing two separate buildings altogether. One building as being spiritual while the other building being physical. If this is what you're saying then you are making a mistake similar to Nestorianism. In their case they did it with Christology, in your case it's being done with Ecclesiology.

So what are you saying? Are you saying Jesus is only spiritual as the chief corner stone and the building that grows from His foundation is also only spiritual?

In how you understand things, where does the physical fit in all of this? Especially since you said only the spiritual church is the Bride!

Also, what does "one body" and "one faith" mean to you in this passage? Does it mean only the spiritual church to you? If so then what is the physical? Is it a totally separate and independent body from the spiritual body? If so then you are making it seem as if two bodies exist instead of only One?

What importance is the physical if only the spiritual is the bride? How would your interpretation fit Ephesians chapter four verses  four and five?


Ephesians 4:4-5
"There is one body and one Spirit, just as you were called to one hope when you were called; one Lord, one faith, one baptism;"


What does this passage mean to you?


 

FountainPen

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PeterTheAleut said:
FountainPen said:
PeterTheAleut said:
FountainPen said:
PeterTheAleut said:
FountainPen said:
PeterTheAleut said:
FountainPen said:
PeterTheAleut said:
Those who have died in Christ and await the resurrection of their bodies at the last day... Based on what you know about us, do you think we would count them as members of the Church right now, even though they're invisible to us?
Peter, that's a ridiculous question given that they are quite literally, invisible -- and given also that it's common practise (for you) to petition those reposed in Christ, to pray with you, to God.
Why is it a ridiculous question? Because you just don't want to answer questions? I have a purpose for asking the question that you think you're discerning though you're very clearly not. So why don't you just answer the question without prejudging it as though you know my agenda?

Are the saints who have died members of the Church, or are they not?
None of us can know that except God. None of can know what's in the heart of a person while they are on earth; the visible church is full of both true Christians and those in church for other reasons. Howcan we presume to know such a thing?
That's not what I asked, FountainPen.

The saints who have died in Christ--I'm talking about those whom God knows as saints and who are no longer with us in the flesh--are they members of the Church as Orthodox know it--visible, invisible, I don't care--or not?
I don't know if they are members of the church, as Orthodox know it -- i'm not Orthodox.
Then why did you call my question a "ridiculous question" as though everyone knows that the Orthodox consider them equal members of the Church as evidenced by our "common practise to petition those reposed in Christ, to pray with [us], to God."? The simple fact is that we deem those who have died in Christ to still be members of the Church, even though they are invisible, which kinda burns up your straw man idea that we believe only in the visible Church.
Can you tell me where i said that Orthodoxy "only" believes in the visible church? I think i said it gives more of an emphasis to the visible church.
Well, the way you've been ranting on this thread implies to me that you see us as guilty of more than just emphasizing the visible Church at the expense of the invisible (as if such a dichotomy exists).
"Ranting", "guilty" ? lol+ Could you give me the less emotional version of - "No, i couldn't find where you said that FountainPen, my mistake" - please?

PeterTheAleut said:
What you need to see is the much larger context.
Don't make assumptions that i don't see the larger context.

PeterTheAleut said:
To those, like you, who disparage the idea that the Church could be visible...
I think i said the visible church was important. It's more than "could be", it is visible, that's an aspect of how people gather and organise themselves.

PeterTheAleut said:
...and emphasize the concept of an invisible Church,
As does scripture.

PeterTheAleut said:
...we defend the very visible nature of the Church in a way that looks as if we place our emphasis on the visible Church at the expense of the invisible.
I'll accept that it looks that way and may not be that way.

PeterTheAleut said:
With others, however, who focus their attention too much on the visible institutions of the Church, such as we often see in the Roman Catholic Church (and sometimes even among the Orthodox), we emphasize in our defense that the Church is first a manifestation of an invisible mystery: the mystery of Christ in us through the indwelling of His Holy Spirit to the glory of God the Father. Quite naturally, we speak differently to different people so that all may come to a deeper appreciation of all that the Holy Orthodox Church is. Just don't take our words to others and make them out as if they're addressing you.
That's a fair point in some respects.
 

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jnorm888 said:
FountainPen said:
PeterTheAleut said:
FountainPen said:
PeterTheAleut said:
FountainPen said:
PeterTheAleut said:
Achronos said:
FountainPen said:
PeterTheAleut said:
FountainPen said:
Asteriktos said:
FountainPen said:
I'm not for one moment suggesting that there is no need for a physical church or that the physical church is not important. I'm just suggesting that the physical church is not The Bride, but the spiritual church is.
It seems to me that it'd be both spiritual and physical. When St. Paul addressed a letter to "the church of God in Corinth, to those sanctified in Christ Jesus and called to be holy, together with all those everywhere who call on the name of our Lord" (1 Cor. 1:2), he seemed to be both addressing specific people in a specific geographical location, and yet also addressing all Christians in all places who are united mystically/mysteriously/spiritually/etc.
But Orthodoxy has the emphasis firmly placed on the physical visible church.
What makes you think this?
It just does and you know it does.
Best argument EVAR
Yeah, right. ::) ;)
I didn't want to answer because i'm not really interested in debating or winning an argument or continually be accused of firing out bible verses, which is such a predictable and slack defense of any position especially since patristic quotes can also be used in this way -- and often are here.
So why do you lump me in with everyone else? I asked a question because I sincerely wanted to know why you think the Orthodox Church places her emphasis firmly on the physical visible Church, not because I want to debate you or throw patristic verses at you. You accuse us of holding a particular point of view and of using debate tactics we call you out for. The least you could do is back up your accusations when asked, not just reply to my questions with more accusations.
Because it seemed to me as though you were asking a question you knew the answer to because the answer was obvious. I couldn't think of a good reason for you doing that. I apologise.

PeterTheAleut said:
FountainPen said:
For what it's worth then...

The Orthodox church makes such a song and dance of where it is and the fact that She Is The One True Only Apostolic and Holy Catholic Church and separates herself from others of the same faith, no less, who she is not in communion with while making grand statements that ekklesia and the companionship of others is of paramount importance to her and indeed the very definition of church to some -- or so i'm led to believe.

And yes, i've noted the nod that's occasionally given to the existence of Christians outside The Church.
You think you could give a more rational, less emotional response than this? Angry isn't very convincing.
Yes. Here is the less emotional response.


The Orthodox church firmly states where it is and the fact that She Is The One True Only Apostolic and Holy Catholic Church and separates herself from others of the same faith, who she is not in communion with while making statements that ekklesia and the companionship of others is of paramount importance to her.

The church does occasionally mention the existence of Christians outside The Church.
Those who have died in Christ and await the resurrection of their bodies at the last day... Based on what you know about us, do you think we would count them as members of the Church right now, even though they're invisible to us?
Peter, that's a ridiculous question given that they are quite literally, invisible -- and given also that it's common practise (for you) to petition those reposed in Christ, to pray with you, to God.

The 'invisible' church i'm talking about is  "....within you" (Luke 17:21) and one where Jesus Christ himself is the chief corner stone, where the building grows. (Ephesians 2: 19-21)
Does "within you" mean separate and independent from Christ? Does it mean not being in communion with Jesus and the Apostles and their church plants?


When the Angel visited the Roman centurion in the book of Acts, did he tell him to go and start an independent christian group not in communion with what Jesus already started with the Apostles? Or did he tell him to go see Peter?


When Jesus spoke to Saul/Paul on the road to Damascus, did he tell him to go and start an independent group not in communion with what He already started? Or did he tell him to go see Ananias? I'm not looking at the text and so I probably got some of the details wrong, but the gist is the same.


Yes, Jesus is the chief corner stone, but don't forget that this Chief cornerstone is God Incarnate! Which means that He is not just Invisible only!

You see, the Docetists believed that Jesus's physical body was an illusion. You are making a similar mistake. For when the building grows is the physical aspect of the building only an illusion? This is what you seem to be saying. And if you aren't saying this then it would seem as if you are seeing two separate buildings altogether. One building as being spiritual while the other building being physical. If this is what you're saying then you are making a mistake similar to Nestorianism. In their case they did it with Christology, in your case it's being done with Ecclesiology.

So what are you saying? Are you saying Jesus is only spiritual as the chief corner stone and the building that grows from His foundation is also only spiritual?

In how you understand things, where does the physical fit in all of this? Especially since you said only the spiritual church is the Bride!

Also, what does "one body" and "one faith" mean to you in this passage? Does it mean only the spiritual church to you? If so then what is the physical? Is it a totally separate and independent body from the spiritual body? If so then you are making it seem as if two bodies exist instead of only One?

What importance is the physical if only the spiritual is the bride? How would your interpretation fit Ephesians chapter four verses  four and five?


Ephesians 4:4-5
"There is one body and one Spirit, just as you were called to one hope when you were called; one Lord, one faith, one baptism;"


What does this passage mean to you?
I've answered all of the relevant parts of this in my responses to other posts in this thread.
 

FountainPen

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Volnutt said:
FountainPen said:
HandmaidenofGod said:
FountainPen said:
Peter, that's a ridiculous question given that they are quite literally, invisible -- and given also that it's common practise (for you) to petition those reposed in Christ, to pray with you, to God.

The 'invisible' church i'm talking about is  "....within you" (Luke 17:21) and one where Jesus Christ himself is the chief corner stone, where the building grows. (Ephesians 2: 19-21)
FountainPen, I am interested in hearing your definitions, as per my post above:

HandmaidenofGod said:
FountainPen said:
For what it's worth then...

The Orthodox church makes such a song and dance of where it is and the fact that She Is The One True Only Apostolic and Holy Catholic Church and separates herself from others of the same faith, no less, who she is not in communion with while making grand statements that ekklesia and the companionship of others is of paramount importance to her and indeed the very definition of church to some -- or so i'm led to believe.

And yes, i've noted the nod that's occasionally given to the existence of Christians outside The Church.
Okay, so we're familiar with the Orthodox Church's definition of "Church," but what about yours?

You've mentioned the terms spiritual church and physical church. For Orthodox Christians, the Church is both spiritual and physical. It is physical, in that we have the church buildings, the clergy, the Liturgy, etc. It is spiritual, in that whenever we pray, we are joining in communion and worship with all of the saints, and our prayers are being lifted up along with all of the other Orthodox Christians praying with us.

When we are participating in the Liturgy, we are going beyond space and time. We are not just remembering Christ's crucifixion and resurrection as an event of the past, but as the here and now.

So my question to you is what are your definitions of these terms?
Sorry HandmaidenofGod, i thought that answer would do you and Peter, both.

The invisible church is one that can't be known by us by empirical means but thankfully is known to God.

The visible church is one where people gather who profess Christ but who none of us can tell who is and who isn't really His, and neither should we try. Therefore, there will be a mix of people who gather such as the examples given to us in the word.

The church is compared to a floor where there is wheat and chaff (Matt. iii. 12)
The church is compared to a field where there are tares as well as good seed (Matt 13:24, 25)
The church is compared to a net, which gathers bad and good fish (Matthew 13:47)
The church is compared to a house where there are vessels of every kind some to honour and some to dishonor (2 Tim 2:20)

This is why the spiritual, invisible church is the bride He is coming back for.
You assume that those Christians who will ultimately not be saved are not still part of the Bride, an assumption which Orthodoxy rejects and I'm not sure is in evidence from those passages.
I'm not sure i understand Vol; all who are His will be saved.
 

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FountainPen said:
PeterTheAleut said:
Well, the way you've been ranting on this thread implies to me that you see us as guilty of more than just emphasizing the visible Church at the expense of the invisible (as if such a dichotomy exists).
"Ranting", "guilty" ? lol+ Could you give me the less emotional version of - "No, i couldn't find where you said that FountainPen, my mistake" - please?
No. I gave you the less emotional version of what I could have said. ;) What you've been doing matches the standard definition of "rant".

FountainPen said:
PeterTheAleut said:
What you need to see is the much larger context.
Don't make assumptions that i don't see the larger context.
I don't need to make assumptions when your posts make abundantly clear that you're missing the forest for the trees.

FountainPen said:
PeterTheAleut said:
To those, like you, who disparage the idea that the Church could be visible...
I think i said the visible church was important. It's more than "could be", it is visible, that's an aspect of how people gather and organise themselves.

PeterTheAleut said:
...and emphasize the concept of an invisible Church,
As does scripture.
You haven't established that Scripture makes a dichotomy between visible and invisible as you do. Others have shown you how the same Scriptures emphasize the concept of a Church that is much more visible than you like to admit. Is it convenient for you to overlook these?

FountainPen said:
PeterTheAleut said:
...we defend the very visible nature of the Church in a way that looks as if we place our emphasis on the visible Church at the expense of the invisible.
I'll accept that it looks that way and may not be that way.
Thank you. :)

FountainPen said:
PeterTheAleut said:
With others, however, who focus their attention too much on the visible institutions of the Church, such as we often see in the Roman Catholic Church (and sometimes even among the Orthodox), we emphasize in our defense that the Church is first a manifestation of an invisible mystery: the mystery of Christ in us through the indwelling of His Holy Spirit to the glory of God the Father. Quite naturally, we speak differently to different people so that all may come to a deeper appreciation of all that the Holy Orthodox Church is. Just don't take our words to others and make them out as if they're addressing you.
That's a fair point in some respects.
In what respects?
 

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FountainPen said:
Volnutt said:
FountainPen said:
HandmaidenofGod said:
FountainPen said:
Peter, that's a ridiculous question given that they are quite literally, invisible -- and given also that it's common practise (for you) to petition those reposed in Christ, to pray with you, to God.

The 'invisible' church i'm talking about is  "....within you" (Luke 17:21) and one where Jesus Christ himself is the chief corner stone, where the building grows. (Ephesians 2: 19-21)
FountainPen, I am interested in hearing your definitions, as per my post above:

HandmaidenofGod said:
FountainPen said:
For what it's worth then...

The Orthodox church makes such a song and dance of where it is and the fact that She Is The One True Only Apostolic and Holy Catholic Church and separates herself from others of the same faith, no less, who she is not in communion with while making grand statements that ekklesia and the companionship of others is of paramount importance to her and indeed the very definition of church to some -- or so i'm led to believe.

And yes, i've noted the nod that's occasionally given to the existence of Christians outside The Church.
Okay, so we're familiar with the Orthodox Church's definition of "Church," but what about yours?

You've mentioned the terms spiritual church and physical church. For Orthodox Christians, the Church is both spiritual and physical. It is physical, in that we have the church buildings, the clergy, the Liturgy, etc. It is spiritual, in that whenever we pray, we are joining in communion and worship with all of the saints, and our prayers are being lifted up along with all of the other Orthodox Christians praying with us.

When we are participating in the Liturgy, we are going beyond space and time. We are not just remembering Christ's crucifixion and resurrection as an event of the past, but as the here and now.

So my question to you is what are your definitions of these terms?
Sorry HandmaidenofGod, i thought that answer would do you and Peter, both.

The invisible church is one that can't be known by us by empirical means but thankfully is known to God.

The visible church is one where people gather who profess Christ but who none of us can tell who is and who isn't really His, and neither should we try. Therefore, there will be a mix of people who gather such as the examples given to us in the word.

The church is compared to a floor where there is wheat and chaff (Matt. iii. 12)
The church is compared to a field where there are tares as well as good seed (Matt 13:24, 25)
The church is compared to a net, which gathers bad and good fish (Matthew 13:47)
The church is compared to a house where there are vessels of every kind some to honour and some to dishonor (2 Tim 2:20)

This is why the spiritual, invisible church is the bride He is coming back for.
You assume that those Christians who will ultimately not be saved are not still part of the Bride, an assumption which Orthodoxy rejects and I'm not sure is in evidence from those passages.
I'm not sure i understand Vol; all who are His will be saved.
I mean those who are His and then fall away a'la Hebrews 6
 

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PeterTheAleut said:
FountainPen said:
PeterTheAleut said:
Well, the way you've been ranting on this thread implies to me that you see us as guilty of more than just emphasizing the visible Church at the expense of the invisible (as if such a dichotomy exists).
"Ranting", "guilty" ? lol+ Could you give me the less emotional version of - "No, i couldn't find where you said that FountainPen, my mistake" - please?
No. I gave you the less emotional version of what I could have said. ;) What you've been doing matches the standard definition of "rant".
I'd gladly agree if by "standard definition" you mean male standard definition for when a woman is trying to communicate something important.

PeterTheAleut said:
FountainPen said:
PeterTheAleut said:
What you need to see is the much larger context.
Don't make assumptions that i don't see the larger context.
I don't need to make assumptions when your posts make abundantly clear that you're missing the forest for the trees.
That would be the lack of engine in the airbus, no doubt.

PeterTheAleut said:
FountainPen said:
PeterTheAleut said:
To those, like you, who disparage the idea that the Church could be visible...
I think i said the visible church was important. It's more than "could be", it is visible, that's an aspect of how people gather and organise themselves.

PeterTheAleut said:
...and emphasize the concept of an invisible Church,
As does scripture.
You haven't established that Scripture makes a dichotomy between visible and invisible as you do. Others have shown you how the same Scriptures emphasize the concept of a Church that is much more visible than you like to admit. Is it convenient for you to overlook these?
I haven't overlooked them any more than the examples i have provided have been overlooked. Peter, there isn't a dichotomy. The visible aspects of the church have a mix of believers and unbelievers in them that the invisible aspects (living saints, if you will) of the church do not. All the same church.

PeterTheAleut said:
FountainPen said:
PeterTheAleut said:
...we defend the very visible nature of the Church in a way that looks as if we place our emphasis on the visible Church at the expense of the invisible.
I'll accept that it looks that way and may not be that way.
Thank you. :)
You're welcome :)

PeterTheAleut said:
FountainPen said:
PeterTheAleut said:
With others, however, who focus their attention too much on the visible institutions of the Church, such as we often see in the Roman Catholic Church (and sometimes even among the Orthodox), we emphasize in our defense that the Church is first a manifestation of an invisible mystery: the mystery of Christ in us through the indwelling of His Holy Spirit to the glory of God the Father. Quite naturally, we speak differently to different people so that all may come to a deeper appreciation of all that the Holy Orthodox Church is. Just don't take our words to others and make them out as if they're addressing you.
That's a fair point in some respects.
In what respects?
In that it doesn't make the statements any less true even if the answers were meant for someone else's question.
 

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Volnutt said:
FountainPen said:
Volnutt said:
FountainPen said:
HandmaidenofGod said:
FountainPen said:
Peter, that's a ridiculous question given that they are quite literally, invisible -- and given also that it's common practise (for you) to petition those reposed in Christ, to pray with you, to God.

The 'invisible' church i'm talking about is  "....within you" (Luke 17:21) and one where Jesus Christ himself is the chief corner stone, where the building grows. (Ephesians 2: 19-21)
FountainPen, I am interested in hearing your definitions, as per my post above:

HandmaidenofGod said:
FountainPen said:
For what it's worth then...

The Orthodox church makes such a song and dance of where it is and the fact that She Is The One True Only Apostolic and Holy Catholic Church and separates herself from others of the same faith, no less, who she is not in communion with while making grand statements that ekklesia and the companionship of others is of paramount importance to her and indeed the very definition of church to some -- or so i'm led to believe.

And yes, i've noted the nod that's occasionally given to the existence of Christians outside The Church.
Okay, so we're familiar with the Orthodox Church's definition of "Church," but what about yours?

You've mentioned the terms spiritual church and physical church. For Orthodox Christians, the Church is both spiritual and physical. It is physical, in that we have the church buildings, the clergy, the Liturgy, etc. It is spiritual, in that whenever we pray, we are joining in communion and worship with all of the saints, and our prayers are being lifted up along with all of the other Orthodox Christians praying with us.

When we are participating in the Liturgy, we are going beyond space and time. We are not just remembering Christ's crucifixion and resurrection as an event of the past, but as the here and now.

So my question to you is what are your definitions of these terms?
Sorry HandmaidenofGod, i thought that answer would do you and Peter, both.

The invisible church is one that can't be known by us by empirical means but thankfully is known to God.

The visible church is one where people gather who profess Christ but who none of us can tell who is and who isn't really His, and neither should we try. Therefore, there will be a mix of people who gather such as the examples given to us in the word.

The church is compared to a floor where there is wheat and chaff (Matt. iii. 12)
The church is compared to a field where there are tares as well as good seed (Matt 13:24, 25)
The church is compared to a net, which gathers bad and good fish (Matthew 13:47)
The church is compared to a house where there are vessels of every kind some to honour and some to dishonor (2 Tim 2:20)

This is why the spiritual, invisible church is the bride He is coming back for.
You assume that those Christians who will ultimately not be saved are not still part of the Bride, an assumption which Orthodoxy rejects and I'm not sure is in evidence from those passages.
I'm not sure i understand Vol; all who are His will be saved.
I mean those who are His and then fall away a'la Hebrews 6
Ah, okay.
:-\

 

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primuspilus said:
BTW a question. If Christ is coming to get the invisible Church, does that mean the visible Church in the way Orthodoxy sees it is incorrect? If so, how are the rules and commands to the Church explained? What about the authority that is clearly exercised in the scriptures?

PP
Sorry Primus, I read back and realised i missed this.

I can't say if it's incorrect as i don't know enough about the way Orthodoxy sees the visible church to fully comment. I can only really comment when i come across aspects of doctrine or belief that i might view as a distortion of how the church was intended to be.

I have no problem with the authority and accountability of overseers within the visible church. I do however see us all as being accountable to each other and before God but then i think we'd be in agreement there also most probably.
 

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I've answered all of the relevant parts of this in my responses to other posts in this thread.
The word relevant is subjective and ambiguous, if I thought you answered my critiques then I would of never of asked you. I presented my examples in a way that connected Christology with Ecclesiology for a reason. I think you are being evasive, and I think you really don't want to use Christology as a grid to follow when talking about this issue.

 

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Does "within you" mean separate and independent from Christ? Does it mean not being in communion with Jesus and the Apostles and their church plants?


When the Angel visited the Roman centurion in the book of Acts, did he tell him to go and start an independent christian group not in communion with what Jesus already started with the Apostles? Or did he tell him to go see Peter?


When Jesus spoke to Saul/Paul on the road to Damascus, did he tell him to go and start an independent group not in communion with what He already started? Or did he tell him to go see Ananias? I'm not looking at the text and so I probably got some of the details wrong, but the gist is the same.


Yes, Jesus is the chief corner stone, but don't forget that this Chief cornerstone is God Incarnate! Which means that He is not just Invisible only!

You see, the Docetists believed that Jesus's physical body was an illusion. You are making a similar mistake. For when the building grows is the physical aspect of the building only an illusion? This is what you seem to be saying. And if you aren't saying this then it would seem as if you are seeing two separate buildings altogether. One building as being spiritual while the other building being physical. If this is what you're saying then you are making a mistake similar to Nestorianism. In their case they did it with Christology, in your case it's being done with Ecclesiology.

So what are you saying? Are you saying Jesus is only spiritual as the chief corner stone and the building that grows from His foundation is also only spiritual?

In how you understand things, where does the physical fit in all of this? Especially since you said only the spiritual church is the Bride!

Also, what does "one body" and "one faith" mean to you in this passage? Does it mean only the spiritual church to you? If so then what is the physical? Is it a totally separate and independent body from the spiritual body? If so then you are making it seem as if two bodies exist instead of only One?

What importance is the physical if only the spiritual is the bride? How would your interpretation fit Ephesians chapter four verses  four and five?


Ephesians 4:4-5
"There is one body and one Spirit, just as you were called to one hope when you were called; one Lord, one faith, one baptism;"


What does this passage mean to you? Did the Roman Centurion and Saul/Paul start separate independent bodies not in communion with the church plants that the Apostles started? If not then you can't say what you are saying.
 

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If this doesn't catch your attention and change your ways, nothing ever will!

Is it any wonder why the Jesus Seminar has created their own Jesus because the original Church is invisible!


Come on guys, the Church is invisible you know it is.
 

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jnorm888 said:
I've answered all of the relevant parts of this in my responses to other posts in this thread.
The word relevant is subjective and ambiguous, if I thought you answered my critiques then I would of never of asked you. I presented my examples in a way that connected Christology with Ecclesiology for a reason. I think you are being evasive, and I think you really don't want to use Christology as a grid to follow when talking about this issue.
...would have never have asked you

Thanks. Opinions always welcome as well.
 
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