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Coptic Orthodox Church
Validity of 23 Minutes in Hell?
edited December 1969
How valid or do we believe in the book
23 Minutes in Hell
i saw the video. doesnt seems too far fetched, but i can't say im not skeptical.
No Coptic Orthodox Christians should have anything to do with any books or videos produced by protestants, and especially those who belong to extreme groups.
You really should not read these books, just as you should not look at pornography. Both are dangerous to our souls.
I strongly recommend that Coptic Orthodox Christians should get rid of all Protestant books and videos and sermons etc unless they have the explicit permission of their priest or bishop to use such materials in study.
It doesn't matter at all whether folk find these books and ideas attractive. We are members of the Body of Christ in which priests and spiritual fathers have care of our souls. We should not read random books and decide for ourselves whether or not we agree with them.
There are more books written by Orthodox Fathers than could be read by any Orthodox Christian in their life time. I sincerely and earnestly wish that we Coptic Orthodox would spend more time, all of our time, studying the accurate and spiritual teachings of our Fathers rather than turning to those attractive deceptions which are produced outside the Church.
I do not say this in criticism of anyone, not least because I do not know who most of you are. But in my own congregation I would not be happy with or encourage any of my flock to read Protestant books without discussing them with me, and certainly not to read anything at all by extreme protestants and pentecostals.
If our enemy cannot induce us to be lazy and half-hearted, then he will try to introduce error into our thinking and spirituality. Let us be aware of his methods. Once again, I urge all young Copts to abandon all of those protestant and pentecostal influences in their lives.
I love you Father Peter.
That is all.
Hi Father Peter
DO you mean theology books? Or generally all protestant books about Christian living, as I have some which I have read, but they do not talk about things such as after death or the nature of God or the church, they are simply books about lifestyles based on Christs teachings.
Pray for me,
I would generally not advise any Orthodox to read any protestant books without discussing them with their spiritual father beforehand.
Much as I love many protestants and rejoice to see some protestants moving towards Orthodoxy - as I did - and much as I believe that there are devout and serious protestants who love Christ - much as I have this view, I also believe that all protestantism, even where I believe it contains truth, is also contaminated and diminished by error.
Therefore all materials produced by protestants must be read with discretion, and not all Orthodox are able to read with discretion, therefore it seems to me that young Orthodox especially, both in age and experience, should seek the advice of their spiritual fathers.
I read and study materials from a wide range of sources and each writer has their own perspective and reflects their own assumptions. Those of protestant writers are not the same as ours, in regard to history, spirituality, theology, liturgics etc etc. Therefore there is always a great danger that a young Orthodox will be confused or even persuaded by non-Orthodox writings and will even unwittingly adopt non-Orthodox views.
What is even worse is that there is a significant number of modern protestant and pentecostal writings which are more than tinged with error, but are entirely false. There are false prophets and teachers. There are false visionaries and visions. There are entirely false spiritualities.
Of course there are useful works by protestant writers. But how is someone to know which are useful to read with discretion and those which should not be read by a particular person at all? Surely only by discussing what we are reading with our fathers and taking their advice. If our spiritual father gives us a wider permission to read and study then that is one thing, but it is not wise to allow ourselves to be the judge of what we should read or watch or listen to. Personally I can't think of any Christian subject on which a protestant would be able to write in an entirely Orthodox manner, and I say this as someone who has read serious protestants quite widely. I am even more concerned that some of the most popular protestant books among young Coptic Orthodox are not the serious protestant works I have read at all, but the more popular and even sensationalist ones that have very little indeed to commend them.
God bless all
I was just wondering if it was valid or not before I read it but I guess I won't read it now. Thank You
Father Peter do you personally believe that that man had that dream?
Did he have a dream? I don't know, and I don't think it is relevant.
We should not trust ourselves to dreams in any case. We should not trust ourselves to visions or angelic visitors. The Fathers are very clear. We are not to put our trust in our own experience or our own understanding. We are easily (and usually) fooled.
Personally he made have had some sort of human dream, and then worked it up, as many of his associates have done into a book and a website and TV programme etc. But he may well have had a deluded dream from the beginning. Certainly the more I learn abotu him and those who he works with the more sure I am that no Coptic Orthodox should have anything to do with anything he has written or said.
There are also books by modern pentecostals who claim to have visited heaven and then written about it. I don't believe those either. There are also modern false prophets who claim to wrote dictated letters from our Lord and from the Apostles. I don't believe any of them as a matter of course.
Have nothing to do with any of these people. Always share your reading list with your priest.
yes, always check with yr priest.
i remembered the story of one of the saints (i can't remember who) who used to have many visions from God.
1 day he had some visitors and he prepared for their arrival. they had not told him they were coming and so they were very surprised to find he already knew they were coming.
they asked him, 'did God tell u we were coming?' and he replied, 'no, the devil told me'
in other words, the demons can see who is about to ring yr door bell and even tell u, so if u have any special knowledge, it is best to assume u got it from the devil so that u are not proud about yr spiritual experiences. that's how humble u should be.
so this guy, if he is a Christian (i do not know the book at all) should tell people about being saved and baptised and living a life that pleases God, rather than focusing on all the details of his dream/ vision. he should speak from the Holy Bible and the teachings of recognised church fathers, because all we need to know is in there.
why run after famous people and their exciting loud sermons when we can run after Jesus Himself in all humility and thanks and praise.
God I love Fr Peter! I have actually studied many of these cases, not because I believed them to be true, but as more of a comparative theology and in case this is brought up during a debate. Simply put, none of it is real. It is a gimick, which protestantism is known for creating, in order to scare people into believing. For many modern day protestants the end justifies the means. For instance Kenneth Hagin, who recently passed, said he died and Christ told him that water baptism was not enough, there needed to be another baptism, baptism of fire.
Simple logic also shows this to be wrong, why would people go to heaven or hell only to have to come back and be judged? If they are already in heaven the havent they been judged?
The book title should be 23 minutes of lies. I agree with Fr Peter, listen to him, there is no value in these books, nothing to benefit your salvation, just confusion.