Any Church is good enough?



  • hi mariaat, yes i heard this recently about melchisedek (genesis 14:18), this is definately about holy communion.
    if i can ever work out how to download stuff on the mp3 player i will listen to that sermon
    i still don't fully understand about Jesus giving His body and blood before His death though.
    i will keep thinking :)
    May God bless you richly
  • Speaking of the institution of the Eucharist, St Cyril says...

    It was fitting therefore for Him to be in us both divinely by the Holy Spirit, and also, so to speak, to be mingled with our bodies by His holy flesh and precious blood: which things also we possess as a life-giving eucharist, in the form of bread and wine. For lest we should be terrified by seeing (actual) flesh and blood placed upon the holy tables of our churches, God, humbling Himself to our infirmities, infuses into the things set before us the power of life, and transforms them into the efficacy of His flesh, that we may have them for a life-giving participation, and that the body of (Him Who is the) Life may be found in us as a life-producing seed. And do not doubt that this is true, since Himself plainly says, "This is My body: "This is My blood:" but rather receive in faith the Saviour's word; for He, being the Truth, cannot lie.

    and St John Chrysostom says...

    And He Himself drank of it. For lest on hearing this, they should say, What then? do we drink blood, and eat flesh? and then be perplexed (for when He began to discourse concerning these things, even at the very sayings many were offended, therefore lest they should be troubled then likewise, He first did this Himself, leading them to the calm participation of the mysteries. Therefore He Himself drank His own blood.

    I am sure there are a great many more references in the Fathers but I had these to hand. It seems to me that these references suggest that the Fathers understood our Lord to have truly offered his own flesh and blood at the first eucharist.

    Father Peter
  • ok, this means i was wrong earlier, and He gave the first holy communion exactly as He intended us to take it. this makes sense to me because God is not restrained by time, but shares Himself fully with us.
    thank you God for your great salvation
    thank you mariaat and father peter
  • im not sure as to which saint said this but he said: " how can someone have God as a Father and not have the church as his mother?". i have a particularly unique view of this question as i was once protestant and even at one point atheistic. while most of these people's heart is in the right place, it is in the wrong church. salvation cannot be achieved outside of the true orthodox church of God. these churches are self serving and operate outside of the authority of God. a child does not dictate rules to their parents, just as a criminal does not do the same to a police officer. this idea that salvation can be achieved outside the orthodox church, outside the sacraments and outside the authority of God is an absolute farce. this comes from certain "teachers" who in an attempt to convert more people have chosen to be politcally correct instead of state the simple truth. Fr. Mikhail E. Mikhail states clearly "salvation cannot be attained outside of the orthodox church."
  • Ioannes, I asked a bishop and he said "that is not the teaching of the copt. orthodox church".
    We can't jugde. Only God knows everything.
    And the cath. - church is build on the basement of the Apostels. So it is a church with true sacraments, by which you can receive salvation.

    in Christ, M.
  • Heres the fact, salvation cannot be attained outside of the Orthodox church. when you actually look at these other so called Christian denominations closely they are NOT Christian. they are rampant with heresies, pride, lust, selfishness, etc. Same as having a gun does not make you a police officer, you have to be given that authority and by saying "i accept Jesus" and then proclaiming to be saved and be "Christian" just simply isnt true. these religions were created because true Orthodox Christianity is much too difficult and not comfortable. as the worlds societies become more materialistic the religions become more watered down in order to suit the worldly lifestyle. the word Orthodox as we all know means "right worship", we worship liturgically just as God ordained it in the old testament and by worshiping how YOU see fit is commanding God, that is not a god that i worship, a weak god that can be told what to do. outside Orthodoxy there is no salvation, this is a fact the early church fathers spoke of and the Orthodox church has taught for 2,000 years, despite what Fr. Anthony Messah says this is a fact.
  • [quote author=Mariaat link=topic=7346.msg101318#msg101318 date=1238093795]
    Ioannes, I asked a bishop and he said "that is not the teaching of the copt. orthodox church".
    We can't jugde. Only God knows everything.
    And the cath. - church is build on the basement of the Apostels. So it is a church with true sacraments, by which you can receive salvation.

    in Christ, M.

    i am not judging people DO NOT mistake me, i am criticizing their beliefs, just as St. John Chrysostom did to the judaizers and the jewish belief. and while you make a good point about the catholic church there is one thing you left out, the congregation does not partake of the blood of Christ. possibly some of the more liberal denominations may do this but the fact is the roman catholic doctrine states clearly that only the priesthood partakes of the blood of Christ. if you would look closely almost every early church heresy exists within the 38,000 protestant denominations, or all denominations that directly descend from the protestant reformation. arianism, montanism, nestorianism, sabaellinism,chilliasm etc. now you are going to tell me that these churches are "Christian" even thought they contradict themselves? your saying well we all believe in Christ, whom we share no common opinion, and that is acceptable to you? i dont know what you told this bishop, if you misquoted me or took me out of context, but im sorry he is wrong if he stated that it is not our place to point these things out to the Orthodox, again did i ever judge anyone?
  • Regardless of the beliefs of the institution, isn't it a person's sincerity God will ultimately judge? I would never even pretend to know how God will choose to judge us, but I can't imagine Him turning away a sincere Christian because s/he is a member of the wrong church. Remember that the Catholics and the Protestant would say exactly the same about us. The people of a church are not responsible for that Church's doctrine, and I don't think God expects every single person to scrutinise every single belief of their church and make sure that they are consistent. What I'm saying is, the Church is bigger than anything humanity could ever mess up beyond repair. Jesus Himself instituted it and thankfully, guides it to this day. Our terrible mistakes in allowing it to break up so many times have not stopped Jesus from using the Church (i.e. ALL churches) to spread His love and His message, regardless of what heresies or falsehoods have been brought in by various people throughout the ages. God would not, I believe, let those people's mistakes jeopardise the salvation of so many people.

    [coptic]ari`hmot twbh ehryi ejwi - qen `photep `nte V] marenwnq[/coptic]
    Please pray for me - May we all live in the peace of God
  • Epchois im sorry but your gravely mistaken. For some reason you and other uninformed people continue to interpret what I and others are saying as "judging". We are not judging these people, we are not saying they are going to hell and we arent. Did not Christ Himself say "I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me. " (John 14:6)
    This is pretty cut and dry, now if the Orthodox Church is the body of Christ here on earth, who are those outside of it? They are NOT guided by God, if they are then why are we doing what we are doing? Making a statement like that is saying that all Christian denominations are relative. Was it not Christ who said: "Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven." "Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works? "  "And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work lawlessness." (Mt. 7:21-23) Notice the word lawlessness, now they obviously did things in Christs name, which we see in the protestant denominations, yet after He recognizes that He rebukes them as doing these things in His name without authority. As if there is lawlessness then there is law, if there is law then there is an authority. Do you not realize that all the early heresies condemned by our Holy Orthodox church exist in modern protestantism? Chilliasm exists in ever single protestant church I have studied, modern day pentecostalism is an exact copy of Montanism, the heresy Tertullian left Orthodoxy for. Arianism in The Way Intl. Jehovahs Witness, Seventh Day Adventist. The list goes on and on. So by you telling me that God Himself is guiding these 38,000 denominations you are telling me that He is telling them all different things AND telling them these heresies are actually ok, even though He said they were not earlier in history. This mixing of Orthodoxy and protestantism reminds me of St. John Chrysostom and his discourses against the judaizers. These are two incompatible belief systems that say, we all believe in Christ whom we share no common opinion, that makes no sense. To mix these theologies would be like poisoning a well, eventually everyone will drink from it and be afflicted with the same sickness, delusion. Do not mistake what I or anyone else is saying, we are not judging the people, we hate the sin not the sinner.
  • big topic!
    essentially i agree with epchois nai nan but also with most of what ioannes said.
    doctrine IS very important (sorry but haven't heard of chillasm..) and, by the way, most main stream protestants would exclude jehovah's witnesses from the category of Christians. the 'all non-Orthodox are not really Christian' doctrine does not explain adequately 1 John 4:2-3, acknowledging Jesus Christ came in the flesh as a mark of a true Christian. even the common knowledge that some independent denominations are widely off the mark (and some frankly heretical) does not therefore label them ALL non-Christian.
    we also have to remember that for 1500 years, all the orthodox disagreed on the nature of Christ and now we agree. by definition, we can't have all been right all the time, so we need to leave room for the possibility that senior orthodox leaders can make theological mistakes.
    the way i see it (just my personal opinion) God allowed the protestant reformation because so many of the orthodox and catholic churches had become corrupt, lacking the love of God. now, i see in the news and in my experience and that of my friends, many protestants becoming orthodox or catholic, and it seems to me that God is gathering people into theologically more sound churches because, through God's grace, the old churches like ours are now full of life and of the love of God.

    so we really can't judge (this doesn't mean i think ioannes is judging, just we are in danger of judging when we don't leave room for the possibility we may not, as orthodox, have the whole picture). but we can (and i do) tell all my catholic and protestant friends about the orthodox churches and encourage them to discuss theology and to visit our church.

    another point: how will they know about the orthodox church if no orthodox visit the other churches? who will spread the message? i am not suggesting you do this if you are a bit confused yourself, but i think some of those who have experienced the fullness of orthodoxy should seriously pray to God for guidance to consider if they should take the message to those who are seeking. there are a lot of people in the other churches who are really seeking for more. for example, an anglican (like episcopalian) vicar i know is delighted with his new orthodox study Bible.

    those protestants i have met who have become orthodox have been impressed by the sound doctrine and the fullness of the orthodox experience, including seeing God's love shown among the people. i do wonder if more would join if less of us suggested they are lawless heretics. many of them have NEVER had any chance to hear about orthodoxy, we should give them this chance! of course they are going to find some of the clothes and the chanting a bit strange but we can encourage them by recognising the validity of some of their thoughts about God and explaining more after that. i truly think many of them are on a spiritual journey that will end in our church, and we should recognise their thirst for the one true God who they worship while we explain to them more fully how to understand and serve him.

    we should be careful not to be arrogant (i can see this tendancy in myself, may God forgive me) but to continue in the faith as we have been taught.
  • If you are saying that you cannot see God judging people like that, then you yourself are judging. If you read carefully the words of Christ you will see several warnings about "falling away" and that many people will come to him saying Lord, Lord, and He will not accept them. This means that Christians, probably some Orthodox too, will not be accepted. If you follow God according to your own will are you really following God? Or are you following your own desires? Christ instituted the church it is His body and if you reject it you reject Him. I highly doubt any Bishop ever said this is not Orthodox. I have heard several priests and bishops say "Outside the Orthodox Church, there is no salvation". St. Cyprian of Carthage says "He cannot have God as a Father if he doesnt have the Church as his mother." It is very clear in the writings of the early church fathers as well. Protestantism cannot be accepted as Christian simply because it isnt.
Sign In or Register to comment.