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Which Came First: New Testament or the Church? by Fr. James Bernstein
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COMankind
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Post: #16
RE: Which Came First: New Testament or the Church? by Fr. James Bernstein

Yannis,

looking back at my post, I appear to have written with less TLC than I should have. To SW's point, we each have our own path to take, and I did not realize how much you were invested in this particular one.

We get defensive, not for ourselves, but for you - it is genuinely out of love. Many of us feel that this is the very thing that Jesus wanted the Israelites to leave behind - the pretentiousness. And for us to see someone drawn to it is difficult.

Quote:
Read Matt 16:18 again. "And I tell you that you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church, and the gates of Hades will not overcome it." That means that Satan will not corrupt it. The Lord is talking about a physical church


A metaphorical rock and gate, yet a literal church.

A metaphorical rock, rain, stream, sand, wind and house:

“Therefore everyone who hears these words of mine and puts them into practice is like a wise man who built his house on the rock. The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house; yet it did not fall, because it had its foundation on the rock. But everyone who hears these words of mine and does not put them into practice is like a foolish man who built his house on sand. The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house, and it fell with a great crash.” Mt 7:24-27

In the same way a man builds 'his spiritual house' on rock, so Jesus builds his spiritual church.

In love.


philia, COMankind

"The tent of God is with mankind" - Rev 21:3

05-30-2011 05:40 AM
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Yannis
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Post: #17
RE: Which Came First: New Testament or the Church? by Fr. James Bernstein

COMankind Wrote:
Yannis,

looking back at my post, I appear to have written with less TLC than I should have. To SW's point, we each have our own path to take, and I did not realize how much you were invested in this particular one.

We get defensive, not for ourselves, but for you - it is genuinely out of love. Many of us feel that this is the very thing that Jesus wanted the Israelites to leave behind - the pretentiousness. And for us to see someone drawn to it is difficult.

Quote:
Read Matt 16:18 again. "And I tell you that you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church, and the gates of Hades will not overcome it." That means that Satan will not corrupt it. The Lord is talking about a physical church


A metaphorical rock and gate, yet a literal church.

A metaphorical rock, rain, stream, sand, wind and house:

“Therefore everyone who hears these words of mine and puts them into practice is like a wise man who built his house on the rock. The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house; yet it did not fall, because it had its foundation on the rock. But everyone who hears these words of mine and does not put them into practice is like a foolish man who built his house on sand. The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house, and it fell with a great crash.” Mt 7:24-27

In the same way a man builds 'his spiritual house' on rock, so Jesus builds his spiritual church.

In love.


The Apostles didnt establish "spiritual" churches throughout the known world at the time. Check out the seven churches mentioned in Revelation. Or the churches in Corinth, Galatia, Ephesus, and Philippi.

But all this talk about priestly garb and calling priests father, etc, detracts us from the posts original intent.

Because when you realize that the Early Church, who complied the New Testament, could not, did not, apostasize, that my friend has real implications.


Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me, a sinner.
05-30-2011 08:31 AM
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isomam
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Post: #18
RE: Which Came First: New Testament or the Church? by Fr. James Bernstein

smoldering wick Wrote:
while we might convince a man against his will, he'll be of the same opinion still.


which is precisely why i attempt to do so little 'convincing' these days. i now fully realize that is the job of holy spirit. when one is not presently inclined to entertain alternate possibilities, all attempts at 'convincing' are likely to prove futile and much more likely will reap negative results.


Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners. Of these I am foremost.--1 Timothy 1:15.

Above all things, have INTENSE Love for one another.--1 Peter 4:8.

Sanctify the Christ as Lord in your hearts. ... Hold a good conscience.--1 Peter 3:15, 16.

TRUTH IS SIMPLE.
05-30-2011 08:52 AM
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Yannis
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Post: #19
RE: Which Came First: New Testament or the Church? by Fr. James Bernstein

isomam Wrote:

smoldering wick Wrote:
while we might convince a man against his will, he'll be of the same opinion still.


which is precisely why i attempt to do so little 'convincing' these days. i now fully realize that is the job of holy spirit. when one is not presently inclined to entertain alternate possibilities, all attempts at 'convincing' are likely to prove futile and much more likely will reap negative results.


You are absolutely right iso, the Holy Spirit leads us where it wills. It led me to Orthodoxy without anyone trying to convince me of it's validity.

My point in all of this is to show that the New Testament was complied by the Orthodox church which would not have been used in this way by God if it was a corrupt church.

I get a little frustrated when ones continue to impute wrong and sinister motives to the Early Church. This was a church full of martyrs and saints, NOT agents of the devil. The church has both weeds and wheat remember?

God would not and could not use them if they were corrupt. He does not work like that.


Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me, a sinner.
05-30-2011 02:54 PM
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gogh
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Post: #20
RE: Which Came First: New Testament or the Church? by Fr. James Bernstein

Howdy Yannis

Re: "God would not and could not use them if they were corrupt."

It seems our Father has allowed ungodly/proud/arrogant etc. humans to fulfill His will...

"...Nebuchadnezzar the king of Babylon came, yes, he and all his military force, against Jerusalem and began camping against it and building against it a siege wall all around." (2 Kings 25...)

etc.

:coffeeread:


"......."This is my Son, whom I have chosen. Keep listening to him!" Luke 9:35
05-30-2011 03:07 PM
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Yannis
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Post: #21
RE: Which Came First: New Testament or the Church? by Fr. James Bernstein

gogh Wrote:
Howdy Yannis

Re: "God would not and could not use them if they were corrupt."

It seems our Father has allowed ungodly/proud/arrogant etc. humans to fulfill His will...

"...Nebuchadnezzar the king of Babylon came, yes, he and all his military force, against Jerusalem and began camping against it and building against it a siege wall all around." (2 Kings 25...)

etc.

:coffeeread:


Ah, using Babylon to punish Israel and using Satan to compile His Word is a bit different wouldnt you say?


Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me, a sinner.
05-30-2011 03:23 PM
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Beau Wetini
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Post: #22
RE: Which Came First: New Testament or the Church? by Fr. James Bernstein

Yannis Wrote:
Ah, using Babylon to punish Israel and using Satan to compile His Word is a bit different wouldnt you say?



Not Satan, just imperfect men, who were no different to anyone else, and subject to the same "hit and miss" tendencies that all men are subjected to.


LIVE THE KINGDOM NOW!!


05-30-2011 03:40 PM
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Yannis
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Post: #23
RE: Which Came First: New Testament or the Church? by Fr. James Bernstein

Beau Wetini Wrote:

Yannis Wrote:
Ah, using Babylon to punish Israel and using Satan to compile His Word is a bit different wouldnt you say?



Not Satan, just imperfect men, who were no different to anyone else, and subject to the same "hit and miss" tendencies that all men are subjected to.


For sure Beau, but imperfect men and apostates is a huge difference. My friend gogh and others here would have us believe these men to be agents of the Devil which the Lord used to complile His Word.

Since He always has a faithful remnant, couldnt He have used someone else more fitting?


Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me, a sinner.
05-30-2011 03:59 PM
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Beau Wetini
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Post: #24
RE: Which Came First: New Testament or the Church? by Fr. James Bernstein

Yannis Wrote:
For sure Beau, but imperfect men and apostates is a huge difference. My friend gogh and others here would have us believe these men to be agents of the Devil which the Lord used to complile His Word.

Since He always has a faithful remnant, couldnt He have used someone else more fitting?



Thanks John - for me, im not sure they were apostate, anymore than people today who make theological conclusions are apostate. I just think that there seems to be a lot more leeway for God to allow human error and tendency to come through....thats not to say its all like that, but perhaps He isnt so rigid.


If that makes sense! :D


LIVE THE KINGDOM NOW!!


05-30-2011 04:15 PM
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COMankind
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Post: #25
RE: Which Came First: New Testament or the Church? by Fr. James Bernstein

Quote:
The Apostles didnt establish "spiritual" churches throughout the known world at the time. Check out the seven churches mentioned in Revelation. Or the churches in Corinth, Galatia, Ephesus, and Philippi.


Precisely why the church Jesus spoke of was spiritual. He called it his Body. All figurative. Each INDIVIDUAL was a figurative member of his body, not geographical congregation or denomination. The church in Ephesus was there to bring like minded Christians together...simply because they lived near each other. Same with the others. It was merely a function Of organization, not how holy spirit was distributed. What church was Paul a part of when he was on the road to Damascus?

Why didn't Jesus say "I will build my churchES" - plural instead of singular? Because he wasn't referring to Ephesus or Phillipi, he was referring to something bigger. Thus, why the church today teaches that there was a unifying body overseeing all literal churches, with Jerusalem as the natural choice, particularly because of acts 15.

But the name "Christian" was coined in Antioch, not Jerusalem. Paul was unhappy with what went down in Acts 15 (see Gal 2) And, of the congregations you mentioned in Revelation that were to be warned, Jerusalem was apparently not sent a message.


philia, COMankind

"The tent of God is with mankind" - Rev 21:3

05-30-2011 05:05 PM
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Yannis
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Post: #26
RE: Which Came First: New Testament or the Church? by Fr. James Bernstein

COMankind Wrote:

Quote:
The Apostles didnt establish "spiritual" churches throughout the known world at the time. Check out the seven churches mentioned in Revelation. Or the churches in Corinth, Galatia, Ephesus, and Philippi.


Precisely why the church Jesus spoke of was spiritual. He called it his Body. All figurative. Each INDIVIDUAL was a figurative member of his body, not geographical congregation or denomination. The church in Ephesus was there to bring like minded Christians together...simply because they lived near each other. Same with the others. It was merely a function Of organization, not how holy spirit was distributed. What church was Paul a part of when he was on the road to Damascus?

Why didn't Jesus say "I will build my churchES" - plural instead of singular? Because he wasn't referring to Ephesus or Phillipi, he was referring to something bigger. Thus, why the church today teaches that there was a unifying body overseeing all literal churches, with Jerusalem as the natural choice, particularly because of acts 15.

But the name "Christian" was coined in Antioch, not Jerusalem. Paul was unhappy with what went down in Acts 15 (see Gal 2) And, of the congregations you mentioned in Revelation that were to be warned, Jerusalem was apparently not sent a message.


You are right, there are physical churches, led by bishops, priests, and deacons, but it does have an invisible quality in that it is his Mystical Body on earth. Yet it is not two but ONE church, hence Jesus didnt say churches.

But you claim that the early church apostaszied, so you have a problem, for by that logic then you believe that Christ's Body is corrupted.


Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me, a sinner.
05-30-2011 06:00 PM
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isomam
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Post: #27
RE: Which Came First: New Testament or the Church? by Fr. James Bernstein

Yannis Wrote:

isomam Wrote:

smoldering wick Wrote:
while we might convince a man against his will, he'll be of the same opinion still.


which is precisely why i attempt to do so little 'convincing' these days. i now fully realize that is the job of holy spirit. when one is not presently inclined to entertain alternate possibilities, all attempts at 'convincing' are likely to prove futile and much more likely will reap negative results.


You are absolutely right iso, the Holy Spirit leads us where it wills.


to your point, yannis:

i absolutely agree. i know a sister who posts here who is convinced that holy spirit led her into watchtower religion :shocked: for certain elements of growth and awareness ... and when that was accomplished, led her out! i believe she is 100% right.

we have all come from different places in life; different life experiences, backgrounds, family and cultural experiences, religious experiences, etc., etc., etc. does it really make sense for any of us to limit god's operations on us through holy spirit? ... to think hs would (must) lead us now on exactly the same path? especially when we are yet so very far from our ultimate goal? no one here (to my knowledge) wants to tell you that you aren't right where god's holy spirit thinks you should be ... for now. for a time. personally, i think those constituting the rank-and-file membership of watchtower religion are similarly there for a time, until holy spirit leads them out and to their next "learning/growing platform."

we can all just take a deep breathe and allow others the same freedom of conscience we demand for ourselves. we'll all be so much better off in the 'here and now' if we can do that. imo.


Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners. Of these I am foremost.--1 Timothy 1:15.

Above all things, have INTENSE Love for one another.--1 Peter 4:8.

Sanctify the Christ as Lord in your hearts. ... Hold a good conscience.--1 Peter 3:15, 16.

TRUTH IS SIMPLE.
05-30-2011 06:27 PM
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Yannis
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Post: #28
RE: Which Came First: New Testament or the Church? by Fr. James Bernstein

isomam Wrote:
we have all come from different places in life; different life experiences, backgrounds, family and cultural experiences, religious experiences, etc., etc., etc. does it really make sense for any of us to limit god's operations on us through holy spirit? ... to think hs would (must) lead us now on exactly the same path?


I would hope that we are all on the same path, the path leading to Christ.


isomam Wrote:
no one here (to my knowledge) wants to tell you that you aren't right where god's holy spirit thinks you should be


Listen, when you put up a picture of a Bishop and poking fun of his appearance without knowing his heart, life experiences, background, what would YOU assume? That's just ignorance on their part.

But people make fun of things they do not know or understand. It's human nature.


Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me, a sinner.
05-30-2011 06:55 PM
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isomam
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Post: #29
RE: Which Came First: New Testament or the Church? by Fr. James Bernstein

Yannis Wrote:

isomam Wrote:
we have all come from different places in life; different life experiences, backgrounds, family and cultural experiences, religious experiences, etc., etc., etc. does it really make sense for any of us to limit god's operations on us through holy spirit? ... to think hs would (must) lead us now on exactly the same path?


I would hope that we are all on the same path, the path leading to Christ.


isomam Wrote:
no one here (to my knowledge) wants to tell you that you aren't right where god's holy spirit thinks you should be


Listen, when you put up a picture of a Bishop and poking fun of his appearance without knowing his heart, life experiences, background, what would YOU assume? That's just ignorance on their part.

But people make fun of things they do not know or understand. It's human nature.


and once again, john, i agree. what i'm hoping to see is all of us becoming more sensitive to the feelings of one another. lord jesus, please forgive me, for i have certainly been repeatedly guilty of this very offense. like everyone else here, i'm working on things and still trying to grow closer to the new personality model we all have in front of us.


Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners. Of these I am foremost.--1 Timothy 1:15.

Above all things, have INTENSE Love for one another.--1 Peter 4:8.

Sanctify the Christ as Lord in your hearts. ... Hold a good conscience.--1 Peter 3:15, 16.

TRUTH IS SIMPLE.
05-30-2011 07:12 PM
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COMankind
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Post: #30
RE: Which Came First: New Testament or the Church? by Fr. James Bernstein

Quote:
But you claim that the early church apostaszied, so you have a problem, for by that logic then you believe that Christ's Body is corrupted.


Yannis, actually, I don't think this at all. I frankly believe that the city of Constantinople was the "beloved city" of Revelation 20:9.

But I just want to let this go in respect for your beliefs, because it's really not worth the anger. In love brother.


philia, COMankind

"The tent of God is with mankind" - Rev 21:3

05-30-2011 07:37 PM
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