"I will establish my Church, and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it" (Matt., 16:18).

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posted on Dec, 2 2003 @ 05:21 PM
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So what is the Church?

Christ our Savior said clearly, "I will establish my Church, and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it" (Matt., 16:18).

Consequently, He created one Church, not many different churches, for in that case He would have spoken in the plural: "churches." This is why it is odd to hear the speeches, which claim to be authoritative, of some modern leaders of the [ecumenical] movement who call themselves "Christians" to the effect that the existence within Christianity of various "churches"


"That they may be one" (John 17:11);
"One Lord, one faith" (Eph. 4:5);
"Be like-minded one toward another" (Rom. 15:5);
"Be of one accord, of one mind" (Phil. 2:2);
"Be ye all of one mind" (I Peter 3:8);
"Be of the same mind one toward another. Mind not high things... Be not wise in your own conceits" (Rom. 12:16).
Wherever the inherited spiritual link of grace going back to the holy Apostles and their successors the Apostolic Men and Holy Fathers has been broken,
wherever various innovations have been introduced in faith and morals with the aim of "keeping in step with the times," of "progressing,"
of not getting out of date and of adapting to the demands and fashions of this world lying in evil there can be no talk of the true Church.

In the Mystery of the Ordination of priests,
God the Holy Spirit gives the special grace of Orders to the priest,
the minister of the mysteries in the Kingdom of God on earth, i.e. in the Church militant.
This grace He gives through the act of the laying-on of the hands of the Apostles and their successors upon the head of those who have been found worthy.
In the priestly performance of a Mystery man counts almost for nothing,
but the grace of God the Holy Spirit is all-important.
The priest, therefore, is not allowed to say, "I baptize thee," or "I forgive thee," or "I unite you" in marriage, etc.; for the real performer of a Mystery is the Lord the Holy Spirit.
This Mystery was commanded and instituted by the Lord and His Apostles (John xv, 16; Acts vi, 2-6; xx, 28; 2 Timothy i, 6).


To the Church, He sent the Holy Spirit. The Spirit descended upon the Apostles, the Spirit of Truth (St. John xv, 16f) Who "manifests all things" to Her and guides Her (St. John xvi, 13),
protecting Her from error.
Indeed, it was to declare this Truth to men that the Lord came into the cosmos, according to His own words (St. John xviii, 31).
And Saint Paul confirms this fact in his letter to his pupil, the bishop Timothy, saying that, "the Church of the living God is the ground and pillar of the Truth" (I Tim iii, 15).

Because She is "the ground and pillar of the Truth," "the gates of Hell cannot prevail against Her."
It follows, then, that the true Christian Church—palpably unique since Christ established but one Church—has always existed on earth and will exist to the end of time.
She has received the promise of Christ, "I will be with you even unto the end of the age.
" Can there be the slightest doubt that the Lord refers here to the Church?
Any honest and sane judgment, any act of good conscience, anyone familiar with the history of the Christian Church, the pure and unaltered moral and theological teachings of the Christian religion, must confess that there was but one true Church founded by our Lord, Jesus Christ, and that She has preserved His Truth holy and unchanged.
History reveals, moreover, a traceable link of grace from the holy Apostles to their successors and to the holy Fathers.
In contrast to what others have done, the Orthodox Church has never introduced novelties into Her teachings in order to "keep up with the times", to be "progressive", "not to be left at the side of the road," or to accommodate current exigencies and fashions which are always suffused with evil.
The Church never conforms to the world.




posted on Dec, 3 2003 @ 09:58 AM
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"That they may be one" (John 17:11);
"One Lord, one faith" (Eph. 4:5);
"Be like-minded one toward another" (Rom. 15:5);
"Be of one accord, of one mind" (Phil. 2:2);
"Be ye all of one mind" (I Peter 3:8);
"Be of the same mind one toward another. Mind not high things... Be not wise in your own conceits" (Rom. 12:16).
To the Church, He sent the Holy Spirit. The Spirit descended upon the Apostles, the Spirit of Truth (St. John xv, 16f) Who "manifests all things" to Her and guides Her (St. John xvi, 13),
protecting Her from error.
Indeed, it was to declare this Truth to men that the Lord came into the cosmos, according to His own words (St. John xviii, 31).
And Saint Paul confirms this fact in his letter to his pupil, the bishop Timothy, saying that, "the Church of the living God is the ground and pillar of the Truth" (I Tim iii, 15).

Jesus said that the Holy Spirit that was to take his place on earth would be a "Comforter" and "the Spirit of Truth". The body is supposed to be the "temple of the Lord". If the Church is the ground and pillar of the Truth, then it seems to me that the Church is the Temple(physical body) in which the Truth resides. We are all to be of one mind and spirit, because we all share the same Spirit.

Hell cannot prevail against the Church, because the Spirit is the only thing that Hell could affect, and the Spirit exists within God and thus, is impervious to "Hell".

I respect the fact that you believe so whole heartedly in your church's integrity, but unless you were there throughout it's history, you are still believing what you have been taught. History is relative and subject to the bias of those recording it. Even when there is no intention to mislead, history can only be documented from the perspective of those writing it, and there are 2 sides to every story. I have read your posts and understand that you are adamantly opposed to any other ideology, and that is your right. Just understand that 100 different people can read the exact same passage of scripture and understand it to say 100 different things. That doesn't mean 99 of them are wrong. It just means that there are 100 different explanations for what that passage could mean.



posted on Dec, 3 2003 @ 04:19 PM
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Jez.......I can see where you are coming from, but the fact remains that I do not make up what I know, ....it's 2,000 year old teachings from the Apostles themselves!
And this fact holds truth from the Apostles time and not some new fabricated truths that are just come out!

Jesus Christ being the Head of the Church as a start, then the Apostles succession to the end of the world!


The Church has in her foundation the atoning sacrifice of Christ that allows us, by faith and through new birth, become partakers of the divine nature (2 Peter 1:4). That is why the life of the Church is supernatural in essence, although it flows in quite ordinary circumstances and visible forms.
It is also explanatory of the Savior's words (so confusing for non-believers) about the position of the faithful in worldly life: "... and the world hath hated them, because they are not of the world, even as I am not of the world" (John 17:14).
"If ye were of the world, the world would love his own: but because ye are not of the world, but I have chosen you out of the world, therefore the world hateth you" (John 15:19).
These words of the Savior demonstrate the incompatibility of righteous life with sinful and out-of-Church customs of the secular world. "My kingdom is not of this world" (John 18:36).

Church. "But ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should show forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvelous light; Which in time past were not a people, but are now the people of God" (1 Peter 2:9:10).

Through reading the Gospel and the Apostolic Epistles it becomes obvious that, in the Savior's plan, people were called to save their souls not as separate individualities, but jointly, in order to establish an indivisible, graceful Kingdom of the Good. Even the kingdom of the evil, headed by the prince of darkness, is rallied for the war against the Church. Christ reminded about it saying, "And if Satan cast out Satan, he is divided against himself; how shall then his kingdom stand?" (Matthew 12:26).

Jez , I was not brought up to beleive in whatever the Church said, Yes, I went to church when young because it was what I had to do, but then when I got older(let's say 17) I did not understand the meaning of what was said in church because I did not find it necessary to learn about what it meant, as so many other people my age(not all).
In fact, I went because I had to go, and that is how I brought up.
Things are different now, in a sense that I have read many books that tell me that the Church is ''life'' it is what Jeus Christ set up......''the Church was created, the Church was instructed not by the Scripture, but by the oral preaching that the Apostles called the tradition (1 Corinthians 11:16 and 15:2, 2 Thessalonians 2:15 and 3:6, 1 Timothy 6:20). The Tradition is a unified custom of instruction in faith.

''Thus, the oneness and unity of the Church was not questioned in the early centuries of Christianity: the Church is one spiritual family, which has been holding the true doctrine, Sacraments and unbroken succession of grace, transferred from bishop to bishop since the Apostolic age. The Apostles' successors never had doubts in that the Church is absolutely necessary for salvation. She keeps and proclaims the pure teaching of Christ, she sanctifies the believers and leads them to salvation. We can use the images of the Scriptures and say that, in the first centuries of Christianity, the Church was viewed as a fenced sheepfold where the Good Shepherd, Christ, secures His sheep from the wolf, the devil. ''

In the first centuries of Christianity believing in Christ meant believing that what He had done on earth, and the means that He had given the believers for salvation, cannot be lost or taken away through efforts of enemies of the Church.
The Old Testament prophets, the Lord Jesus Christ and His Apostles definitely taught that the Church would exist until the last times of the world: "And in the days of these (pagan) kings shall the God of heaven set up a kingdom, which shall never be destroyed... it shall break in pieces and consume all these kingdoms, and it shall stand for ever," — predicted an Angel to the prophet Daniel (Daniel 2:44).
The Lord made a promise to the Apostle Paul, "Upon this rock (of faith) I will build my church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it" (Matthew 16:18).

In this way, if only we believe the promise of the Savior, we should acknowledge that His Church exists in our time and until the end of the world. We have not pointed out where she is yet, but only posed a principal assumption: she should exist in her holy, indivisibly whole, real essence. Fractured, damaged, evaporated — she will not be the Church.

First, the true Church must maintain the Christian doctrine, proclaimed by the Apostles, in its intactness and purity.
The Son of God came to the earth with the goal of bringing the truth to people, as He said before His suffering on the Cross, "To this end was I born, and for this cause came I into the world, that I should bear witness unto the truth. Every one that is of the truth heareth my voice" (John 18:37).
The Apostle Paul, instructing his disciple Timothy on how to fulfill the bishop's office, concluded, "But if I tarry long, that thou mayest know how thou oughtest to behave thyself in the house of God, which is the church of the living God, the pillar and ground of the truth" (1 Timothy 3:15).

Pastors and Teachers


"And He (God) gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers; For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ" (Ephesians 4:11-12).

It is not the goal of our life to mechanically move the soul to the paradise; the primary goal is interior, spiritual renewal. In its turn it requires knowledge, experience, guidance, assistance, cleansing and sanctification. And for this the Church is needed, as the spiritual treaty of the faithful.


I myself dont go to Church every Sunday, I guess, because I'm lazy (and I know it's wrong... .there's no excuse for this) ...

Orthodoxy also has 'vespers' on the Sabbath...saturday...sabbato in Greek....we honour that day!
Nothing in the traditions of the Old Testament have been changed, only that Christ has Resurrected and His Church ...Savior's clear words, "I will build my church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it" (Matthew 16:18).

Unity of the Church was the subject of the High-Priest prayer of our Savior: "That they all may be one; as thou, Father, art in me, and I in thee, that they also may be one in us" (John 17:21).

The Church of Christ, although it exists in the world that lies in evil, has nothing in common with it. She has Her fence, or boundaries, that separate the sheep of Christ from the bad-tempered sheep and from the wolves. This is told in the parable of the Good Shepherd.

"Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that entereth not by the door into the sheepfold, but climbeth up some other way, the same is a thief and a robber.
But he that entereth in by the door is the shepherd of the sheep. To him the porter openeth; and the sheep hear his voice: and he calleth his own sheep by name, and leadeth them out.
And when he putteth forth his own sheep, he goeth before them, and the sheep follow him: for they know his voice. And a stranger will they not follow, but will flee from him: for they know not the voice of strangers... I am the door: by me if any man enter in, he shall be saved, and shall go in and out, and find pasture... As the Father knoweth me, even so know I the Father: and I lay down my life for the sheep.
And other sheep I have, which are not of this fold: them also I must bring, and they shall hear my voice; and there shall be one fold, and one shepherd" (John 10:1-5; 9, 15, 16).
Clarity of Apostolic teaching, legislation, lineage of the apostolic succession, and the entire order of Church life comprise the obvious fence separating the Church from various religious groups.

The door of the parable is the Sacrament of Baptism, by the means of which the faithful become members of the Church.
But there is also a door for the shepherds, which is the legitimate election and ordination. Usurpers of the shepherd's functions, who "climb up some other way" as it is put down in the parable, are thieves and robbers.
The parable of the Good Shepherd stresses the idea of obedience for the sheep and self-sacrifice for the shepherds. Obedience is expressed through acceptance of the teaching of the Church, without critique and private opinion, and living Christian lives under the guidance of good shepherds.

The sin of sectarians is, first of all, in their disobedience to the Church, their insubordination and riot. Protestantism is a very characteristic generic term for sectarians.

The parable of the vine discloses the mysterious communion of the faithful with the Lord Jesus Christ, the Source of gifts of grace and spiritual revival.

"I am the true vine, and my Father is the husbandman... Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, except it abide in the vine; no more can ye, except ye abide in me. I am the vine, ye are the branches: He that abideth in me, and I in him, the same bringeth forth much fruit: for without me ye can do nothing" (John 15:1, 4-5).

Whosoever arrogantly alienates oneself from the Church, becomes similar to a cut branch: not only it remains fruitless, but also it will undoubtedly dry up. The consciousness of unity with Christ in the Sacrament of communion should fill us with sense of utter gratitude. We draw our better intentions and powers from Him. He is the source of our spiritual life!

Ok, I think I said a bit too much....

There is so much more to learn ......even for myself!

But for this reason the Church still exists because in the end of days, when the Antichrist comes, he will want all worship for himself and try to break up the true Church of Christ......but because this cannot happen, he will try to say that he is God come down and set up his kingdom on earth.......Jesus Christ did not try to set up an ''earthly kingdom'' He said that ''His kingdom is not of this world''......

It is not the goal of our life to mechanically move the soul to the paradise; the primary goal is interior, spiritual renewal. In its turn it requires knowledge, experience, guidance, assistance, cleansing and sanctification. And for this the Church is needed, as the spiritual treaty of the faithful.



In a normal, healthy family there should not be a conflict between parents and kids, the elder and the younger; so in the Church, the ministries can be different but all of them are needed for the common good.
"The elders which are among you I exhort," writes St. Peter, "Feed the flock of God which is among you, taking the oversight thereof, not by constraint, but willingly; not for filthy lucre, but of a ready mind; Neither as being lords over God's heritage, but being ensamples to the flock... Likewise, ye younger, submit yourselves unto the elder" (1 Peter 5:1-5).

The Holy Apostle Paul comforted his compatriots, Judean Christian persecuted by non-believing Jews, by reminding them about this genuine glory of the heavenly-and-worldly Church, "But ye are come unto mount Sion, and unto the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem, and to an innumerable company of angels, To the general assembly and church of the firstborn, which are written in heaven, and to God the Judge of all, and to the spirits of just men made perfect, And to Jesus the mediator of the new covenant" (Hebrews 12:22-24). And yet in another place he compared the Church to a great building and inspired the faithful with the following words, "Now therefore ye are no more strangers and foreigners, but fellow citizens with the saints, and of the household of God; And are built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ himself being the chief corner stone; In whom all the building fitly framed together groweth unto an holy temple in the Lord" (Ephesians 2:19-21).

www.orthodoxphotos.com...



posted on Dec, 3 2003 @ 05:15 PM
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Wow...you good...and you have a spot reserved by God's side in my own opinion...not judging..just impressed...woohooo. I would quote you...but that was one gracius reply....Amen. It gave me chills to read what you typed...I wish I had that much true knowledge. I know the truth...just don't know how to relay it to others. BTW...there are a lot of atheists on this site that will dig their evil talons in....just to watch you squirm....DON'T! I have been blessed with visions...I have seen demons...you name it...I know how it "all" comes together...and I believe. I'm also glad this is in BTS instead of ATS...otherwise...the atheists would jump in...watch..they still will. I will close for now...watch...just watch.



posted on Dec, 3 2003 @ 06:56 PM
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Originally posted by xenongod
Wow...you good...and you have a spot reserved by God's side in my own opinion...not judging..just impressed...woohooo. I would quote you...but that was one gracius reply....Amen. It gave me chills to read what you typed...I wish I had that much true knowledge. I know the truth...just don't know how to relay it to others. BTW...there are a lot of atheists on this site that will dig their evil talons in....just to watch you squirm....DON'T! I have been blessed with visions...I have seen demons...you name it...I know how it "all" comes together...and I believe. I'm also glad this is in BTS instead of ATS...otherwise...the atheists would jump in...watch..they still will. I will close for now...watch...just watch.

Hi xeno.....
Im not at all knowledgable....Yes, I like to read alot.....always liked reading...but it's what we read that can make a difference to what we have to say!
I have to give credit to the early church fathers on the above explanation ...not my doing at all!

I believe that if you speak with honesty, then that cannot ever be taken away and made to look like lies.......because as we know, the father of lies is ''Satan'' himself.....and he knows that in the end....
True victory belongs to God..
helen..



posted on Dec, 3 2003 @ 07:13 PM
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First I would like to state that Helen you are a posting machine!


I have a few questions. You write so much I can't get through it all at work, but in a nutshell what are you saying the church is.
Do you believe that the Greek Orthodox church is the only true church?



posted on Dec, 3 2003 @ 07:52 PM
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Originally posted by StationsCreation
First I would like to state that Helen you are a posting machine!


I have a few questions. You write so much I can't get through it all at work, but in a nutshell what are you saying the church is.
Do you believe that the Greek Orthodox church is the only true church?


LOL.....I dont write much..unless it is from a book that I have here with me...otherwise it's a combination of my thoughts and the web pages that I visit!
Please dont give me credit!
If it wasn't for the books and the sites....I myself would know nothing.......

The Orthodox Church.......
Let's start at the beginning.....How was the Church formed?

First, the true Church must maintain the Christian doctrine, proclaimed by the Apostles, in its intactness and purity.
The Son of God came to the earth with the goal of bringing the truth to people, as He said before His suffering on the Cross, "To this end was I born, and for this cause came I into the world, that I should bear witness unto the truth. Every one that is of the truth heareth my voice" (John 18:37).
The Apostle Paul, instructing his disciple Timothy on how to fulfill the bishop's office, concluded, "But if I tarry long, that thou mayest know how thou oughtest to behave thyself in the house of God, which is the church of the living God, the pillar and ground of the truth" (1 Timothy 3:15).

Another indication of the true Church is the grace and power of God that the Church sanctifies and strengthens believers with.
Although grace is invisible, there is a visible condition that permits us to judge whether grace is present or not: the apostolic succession.
Since the Apostolic age grace was given to believers in the Sacraments of baptism, Communion, imposition of hands (Chrismation and Cheirotonia, or ordination) and other mysteries. First these Sacraments were worked by the Apostles (Acts 8:14-17),
and later by bishops and presbyters. Presbyters differed from bishops in that they did not have the right to ordain.
The right to perform these Sacraments could be conferred exclusively in the form of succession: the Apostles ordained bishops, and to ordain other bishops, priests and deacons, was allowed to them only.
The Apostolic succession is similar to the holy fire that lights many candles from one. Had the fire died out and the chain of apostolic succession discontinued, then there would no longer be priesthood and Sacraments, and the means of sanctification of believers would be lost.
That is why continuity of the apostolic succession has been thoroughly watched since the Apostles' times: that a bishop is ordained only by genuine, legitimate bishops with their ordination traced back to the Apostles themselves.
If bishops fell into heresy or conducted immoral life, they were deposed and lost the right to perform Sacraments or ordain successors...

Indications of the genuine grace are peace of soul, love for God and neighbor, gentleness, meekness, humbleness, and other such qualities, enumerated by Saint Paul in his Epistle to the Galatians (5:22-26).

I would have to say that people do their own searching for what is truth and keep on searching and asking many questions!
Never ,ever doubt that the word of God is a lie!
If it is the truth and your soul is truthfully searching and needing spiritual food, then the only way to go is by prayer and fasting.......do as what Christ Himself showed the world....That is why He came to the sinners,to show them Love and how one should truly be...
He came as a carpenters Son to show the world that we ourselves can follow in His footsteps, but not with Pride, but with humility and living the life He showed us!
Many people seek out of curiosity and not with truth in their hearts....which can be misleading and make one feel that they themselves know all things better then what the Apostles themselves have said...whether by words written in the Bible or by ....quote///The Gospels and Apostolic Epistles did not appear all at once and all at one place.
For decades after the Church was created, the Church was instructed not by the Scripture, but by the oral preaching that the Apostles called the tradition (1 Corinthians 11:16 and 15:2, 2 Thessalonians 2:15 and 3:6, 1 Timothy 6:20). The Tradition is a unified custom of instruction in faith.

So , unless someone is living the exact life as Jesus Christ did(to show us that we can surely live like that,but not without 'suffering'' we take it all with humility)then one has not truly lived to the expectations of what was said by Christ Himself....He said that ''suffering'' is what Christianity is about.......excommunicated persistent adherents of false teachings, according to the Apostles' instruction: "But though we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel unto you than that which we have preached unto you, let him be accursed," i.e. excommunicated (Galatians 1:8-9).

quote////We acknowledge that faith only is not enough to make life conform with belief. That is why we recognize the need in fulfilling the Ten Commandments, given by God to the prophet Moses (Exodus, Chapter 20), and the Evangelical Commandments, or blessings, given by the Lord Jesus Christ (Matthew 5:3-12).
The essence of these commandments is the love for God and neighbor, and even to enemies (Matthew 5:43-45).
These commandments of love place the Christian faith above other religions in the moral sense, and from the point of view of the human reason they can be evaluated as the only way to establish peace, mutual respect and lawfulness among people. Without genuine love for neighbor and all-forgiveness, wars and mutual extermination will be inevitable.
The Lord Jesus Christ teaches us to forgive everyone in the Lord's Prayer, when it reads, "And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors" (Matthew 6:12). In His parables, the Lord teaches us about the virtues of faith, meekness, patience, constancy, justice and other. Outstanding among others is the parable of the talents, which calls us to develop all abilities and talents that the Lord God gave us.
The genuine faith must inevitably manifest itself in the inner growth and good-doing, because "faith without works is dead" (James 2:20).
Quote///
The teaching of the Orthodox Church is concisely formulated in the Creed, developed by the First and Second Universal Synods in 325 and 381 (in Nicaea and Constantinople).
In its turn, this Creed was built upon more ancient creeds, originated in the age of the Apostles. Summing up the Orthodox doctrine, we believe in One God — Father, Son and the Holy Ghost, — Who is the consubstantial and indivisible Trinity. The Son is begotten from the Father before all ages.
The Holy Ghost does eternally proceed from God the Father. We believe that One God, worshipped in the Trinity, is eternal, omnipotent and omnipresent, that He, by His will and out of nothing, created everything that exists: first the invisible angel world, then our visible, material world.
Also, God created us people, breathed immortal soul into us, and inscribed His moral law in our hearts. God created us so that we improve ourselves and reach never-ending felicity in communion with Him. We believe that God is infinitely just and merciful. He rules the whole universe and life of every human being, and nothing can happen without His will.

When the first people broke the commandment of God, God did not reject them completely, but, through the prophets, began to prepare people for salvation, and promised to send the Messiah, or Christ, to them. When the world matured enough to accept the true faith, the Son of God, Our Lord Jesus Christ came to the earth to save us, sinful people.

www.orthodoxphotos.com...

Hope that makes sense to what beliefs I adhere to...
helen.,





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