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    World Religion & Speculative Theology - Thread: Listening to the beliefs of people of different denominations

    1. #1
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      Listening to the beliefs of people of different denominations

      Simple things. Growing up I ended up being stopped by people of different denominations to talk about the word of God and to be honest, I've always been fine with it, but it seems that for many, it is not the right thing to do.
      I've heard too many times ina church how they talk of other denominations as an enemy that will just cause you to be lost and talks about converting people from otehr denominations to theirs, and not much cooperation between them to for example, coordinate mercy actions like cleaning the city, volunteer in a kids hospital, etc.


      I don't know, I've grew used to listening to different denominations doing a little preach or giving me a free pamphlet, soo I didn't even think it was wrong until I made some Christian friends and went to certain church denominations.

      I am just curiious to hear what is your take in hearing to other people's denominations talk about their beliefs. Do you think it sis fine so long it is not trying to convince you to convert, do you think it should be avoided at all costs?
      Do you see other denominations as dangerous and rather not to have anything to do with them?

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    3. #2
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      Quote Originally Posted by Kaynil View Post
      Simple things. Growing up I ended up being stopped by people of different denominations to talk about the word of God and to be honest, I've always been fine with it, but it seems that for many, it is not the right thing to do.
      I've heard too many times ina church how they talk of other denominations as an enemy that will just cause you to be lost and talks about converting people from otehr denominations to theirs, and not much cooperation between them to for example, coordinate mercy actions like cleaning the city, volunteer in a kids hospital, etc.


      I don't know, I've grew used to listening to different denominations doing a little preach or giving me a free pamphlet, soo I didn't even think it was wrong until I made some Christian friends and went to certain church denominations.

      I am just curiious to hear what is your take in hearing to other people's denominations talk about their beliefs. Do you think it sis fine so long it is not trying to convince you to convert, do you think it should be avoided at all costs?
      Do you see other denominations as dangerous and rather not to have anything to do with them?
      I think a lot would depend on the nature of the differences, and the purpose of the listening. As a rule I like to talk with people who have different viewpoints because it helps me learn more about how others see the world. The only proviso is that "talk with" has to mean discussion of the merits of different viewpoints rather than the kind of "discussion" that so often happens on social media that consists of little more than calling people names.

      For the most part I wouldn't see learning more about other denominations as a bad thing. If a "discussion" is going to turn into a lecture on "all the ways you are wrong" it seems to have little opportunity to benefit either side but if it features explanation of why different groups interpret different passages of Scripture in different ways it can only benefit anyone prepared to listen. I'd be a little wary of a discussion that had a primary aim of getting me to leave my church and go to some other church although someone presenting their thoughts on why my church was doing things that were unscriptural (assuming they were backed with coherent appeals to Scripture) is the sort of thing I'd want to hear.

      I would be concerned about denominations and groups that deviate so far from any interpretation of Scripture that I could consider even remotely appropriate. If a group is notionally Christian but teaches something I consider to be a false gospel I'd want to see some solid Scriptural reasoning to demonstrate why their gospel wasn't false. That would probably take some doing, given I don't put labels like that on groups lightly.
      "Do what thou will shall be the whole of the law" - Aleister Crowley

      "If you love me, obey my commandments" - Jesus Christ

      The Bible comes as a complete package. If we want to pluck verses out of context so make them mean what we want them to mean, if we want to ignore the passages that are inconvenient to our outlook, we should be intellectually honest enough to throw our Bibles in the trash and admit we are following Crowley and not Christ.

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    5. #3
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      I also like to hear different beliefs but I would caution that you should be grounded in what you believe and have a firm grasp of the Word or you could end up believing something other than the gospel
      Isaiah 40:31

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      Quote Originally Posted by tango View Post
      I think a lot would depend on the nature of the differences, and the purpose of the listening. As a rule I like to talk with people who have different viewpoints because it helps me learn more about how others see the world. The only proviso is that "talk with" has to mean discussion of the merits of different viewpoints rather than the kind of "discussion" that so often happens on social media that consists of little more than calling people names.

      For the most part I wouldn't see learning more about other denominations as a bad thing. If a "discussion" is going to turn into a lecture on "all the ways you are wrong" it seems to have little opportunity to benefit either side but if it features explanation of why different groups interpret different passages of Scripture in different ways it can only benefit anyone prepared to listen. I'd be a little wary of a discussion that had a primary aim of getting me to leave my church and go to some other church although someone presenting their thoughts on why my church was doing things that were unscriptural (assuming they were backed with coherent appeals to Scripture) is the sort of thing I'd want to hear.

      I would be concerned about denominations and groups that deviate so far from any interpretation of Scripture that I could consider even remotely appropriate. If a group is notionally Christian but teaches something I consider to be a false gospel I'd want to see some solid Scriptural reasoning to demonstrate why their gospel wasn't false. That would probably take some doing, given I don't put labels like that on groups lightly.

      Yeah.


      IMO, some things need to be kept clearly in mind -


      1. Right doctrine gets no one into heaven and gets no one right with God. People confuse FAITH (trust/reliance on Christ as the Savior) with DOCTRINE (what is taught about stuff). Lutherans (well, the LCMS and WELS Lutherans) are the only ones right about doctrine but they certainly are FAR from the only ones with the divine gift of faith. I don't agree with about 5% (Max) of the 2,865 points of the latest edition of the official Roman Catholic Catechism but I accept Catholics as my FULL, in every way EQUAL brothers and sisters in Christ, fully a part of Christ's Church and on their way to heaven. Just wrong (occasionally). Oh, and btw, I DO realize that I could be wrong, too (Just ask my wife). NOW, don't misunderstand. I LIKE for churches/denominations to have a stance. I dislike the ever-increasing trend to believe nothing, to stand for nothing, to have SHORT (and often meaningless) "statements of faith". Milktoast Christianity is condemnable. I just don't want "what is true" confused with "what saves." When I "debate" with a Catholic, for example, I'm talking with someone who is saved just like me, one with whom I'll be spending eternity in heaven, and I rejoice in his Savior as much as I do in mine. He's just wrong (lol).


      2. I actually think the plethora of perspectives we have today CAN be good (well, it's possible). One of the reasons I'm here (rather than at some Lutheran site) is that here I get perspectives I've don't know, things I didn't know, "takes" I had never considered. And some times what I think gets challenged - and therefore examined. If we hide in a closet and only talk with self, we'll probably never grow and "wrong" will never be identified and corrected. Luther said, "Humility is the basis of all good theology" (or something like that) and I think gathering with other Christians who hold to other views can come from that. A philosophy prof of mine way back in my undergraduate years always encouraged us to "live an examined life." I think that goes for our theology/doctrine/teachings too. Just don't get carried away with it.


      3. Where I think Christian doctrine/teachings gets into trouble is the power of individualism and egoism. I rant about this constantly here at CH. Individualism (whether that be a person, a church, a denomination or whatever) - the constant MEism, what I think/feel/say/opinionate; self asking self questions and then appointing self to answer them and then requiring that God agrees (or God is stupid). Well, egoism just allows one to do that and think it's reasonable. And where egoism gets DANGEROUS is when self thinks that self don't need no Savior but self actually saves self (by "deciding" or "willling" or "doing XYZ" or whatever); egoism actually can destroy faith. The church is US - all Christians (alive and in heaven) TOGETHER..... the Bible was not given to any ONE but to ALL of us TOGETHER.... the Holy Spirit is not given to ONE but to ALL of us TOGETHER. It's important to look to the WHOLE of Scripture, to Tradition, to History. I put some stock in the Ecumenical Creeds and Councils. And I think that sometimes the wisest thing one can say is "I don't know" (just don't let that take you into relativism; humility and relativism are NOT the same thing); we are called to be "stewards of the MYSTERIES of God" not "correctors of God" or "Explainers for God."



      Just my half cent.



      - Josiah




      .
      Last edited by Josiah; 04-08-2019 at 12:32 PM.
      We are justified by works - just not our own.

    8. #5
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      Quote Originally Posted by Kaynil View Post
      Simple things. Growing up I ended up being stopped by people of different denominations to talk about the word of God and to be honest, I've always been fine with it, but it seems that for many, it is not the right thing to do.
      I've heard too many times ina church how they talk of other denominations as an enemy that will just cause you to be lost and talks about converting people from otehr denominations to theirs, and not much cooperation between them to for example, coordinate mercy actions like cleaning the city, volunteer in a kids hospital, etc.


      I don't know, I've grew used to listening to different denominations doing a little preach or giving me a free pamphlet, soo I didn't even think it was wrong until I made some Christian friends and went to certain church denominations.

      I am just curiious to hear what is your take in hearing to other people's denominations talk about their beliefs. Do you think it sis fine so long it is not trying to convince you to convert, do you think it should be avoided at all costs?
      Do you see other denominations as dangerous and rather not to have anything to do with them?
      Since you ask, my opinion about that is that it is all right. However, if you are going to enter into a discussion of doctrines and practices with someone who is a trained advocate for some other faith, you had better be very well-educated in your own!

      That is what pastors worry about, that you could be deceived by a mistranslation of Scripture or some twisted logic or by an appeal to a phony version of Christian history. Thats what is especially worrisome when it comes to members of cults who are among the most aggressive of debaters.

      So, the final answer to the question really lies with the readiness of the one being approached. If you are not, its probably best just to politely turn the invitation aside.

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      Just to pick up on a point raised a couple of times here - you should know what you believe but it's just as important to know why you believe it. It's all very well to say "The Bible says...." but if you can't quote chapter and verse, or if you don't know the context, you're potentially vulnerable to having your thinking picked apart.

      To give you an example, the Bible quite clearly says "You will declare a thing and it will be established for you". Taken out of context it sounds very much like we can more or less speak things into existence. Taken in context it means something very different - the verse in question is Job 22:28 and if you look at the context you see that the words were spoken by Eliphaz the Temmanite, one of Job's friends. Later on (in Job 42:7) we can read about what God thought of what Eliphaz had to say and suffice to say it wasn't very positive. If you've heard someone quote the verse, maybe looked it up to verify it really does say that, and haven't considered the context, don't be surprised if someone who knows the text better can argue more persuasively.
      "Do what thou will shall be the whole of the law" - Aleister Crowley

      "If you love me, obey my commandments" - Jesus Christ

      The Bible comes as a complete package. If we want to pluck verses out of context so make them mean what we want them to mean, if we want to ignore the passages that are inconvenient to our outlook, we should be intellectually honest enough to throw our Bibles in the trash and admit we are following Crowley and not Christ.

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      More learned or more persusasive does not mean right, I know scripture but cannot quote chapter and verse, there are many who are much better at that than I but Ido know what I believe and nothing will shake that as I have had many years to establish it
      Isaiah 40:31

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      Quote Originally Posted by tango View Post
      Just to pick up on a point raised a couple of times here - you should know what you believe but it's just as important to know why you believe it. It's all very well to say "The Bible says...." but if you can't quote chapter and verse, or if you don't know the context, you're potentially vulnerable to having your thinking picked apart.

      To give you an example, the Bible quite clearly says "You will declare a thing and it will be established for you". Taken out of context it sounds very much like we can more or less speak things into existence. Taken in context it means something very different - the verse in question is Job 22:28 and if you look at the context you see that the words were spoken by Eliphaz the Temmanite, one of Job's friends. Later on (in Job 42:7) we can read about what God thought of what Eliphaz had to say and suffice to say it wasn't very positive. If you've heard someone quote the verse, maybe looked it up to verify it really does say that, and haven't considered the context, don't be surprised if someone who knows the text better can argue more persuasively.
      Very true, many churches have terrible sermons because they'll twist a verse out of context.
      Also I never liked churches that damn all outsiders of that church, ridicules. All believers are saved, they are the church, and we are all of one accord.

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      Quote Originally Posted by Kaynil View Post
      Simple things. Growing up I ended up being stopped by people of different denominations to talk about the word of God and to be honest, I've always been fine with it, but it seems that for many, it is not the right thing to do.
      I've heard too many times ina church how they talk of other denominations as an enemy that will just cause you to be lost and talks about converting people from otehr denominations to theirs, and not much cooperation between them to for example, coordinate mercy actions like cleaning the city, volunteer in a kids hospital, etc.


      I don't know, I've grew used to listening to different denominations doing a little preach or giving me a free pamphlet, soo I didn't even think it was wrong until I made some Christian friends and went to certain church denominations.

      I am just curiious to hear what is your take in hearing to other people's denominations talk about their beliefs. Do you think it sis fine so long it is not trying to convince you to convert, do you think it should be avoided at all costs?
      Do you see other denominations as dangerous and rather not to have anything to do with them?
      I don't think of Christianity in terms of denominations. I think of Christianity in terms of what scripture reveals about God. There is not one group that has God locked in and understood perfectly. There are some who are so wrong, however, that you must call out their false teaching.
      For example, Mormons misunderstand God so significantly that no one can be saved by adhering to their teaching. The God they have created is not the God who created them.
      The Apostles and Jesus warned against these wolves. However, how can we know the wolves if we don't read scripture?

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      Some demonstrations are tougher at getting respect than others. For instance, I lean toward Christian Universalism - which basically says - eventually all will be saved - via temporal "hells" of some sort.

      Of course, opponents of that view say it's wimpy, God is required to be stern or else - and that it's Biblically false.

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