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Old 03-07-2001, 11:04 PM   #41
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madamc, are you a believer in kabala (sp?)? Just curious...
yes i do study kabbalah

www.kabbalah.com
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Old 03-07-2001, 11:08 PM   #42
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G-d is spelled that way in Hebrew, because they don't use vowels in their spelling. Its not a respect thing, its their language.
The Lord's name is not "God"--if it was, you could not verbalize the law without breaking it ("You will not take the Lord your God's name in vain")

Dream Wanderer--in the OT it specifically states that if a man claims that his wife was not a virgin, and it turns out she was not--she was stoned. The sex laws in the OT are sverely slanted to favor the males, but they are there, sex was not allowed (for females at least) before marriage. Joseph even thought of leaving Mary when he found out she was pregnant, because he knew it wasn't his, and did not want to be dishonored by marrying a non-virgin. God convinced him otherwise.

The geneology of Joseph was shown so that those who believed him to be human could accept him as the chosen one because he was descended from the line of David (as was foretold in the OT).

kerc--I don't know that I would credit God for statues that drip blood, etc. The Bible says that Satan will "appear as an angel of light". People flocking to see a statue of Mary for whatever reason takes their eyes off God--the devil's whole goal.

madamc--what is this "Kabbalh"(sp?)--very interesting, would like to check it out.


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Old 03-08-2001, 01:53 AM   #43
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I go to a Presbyterian church and we do not have representations of Jesus or any other figure (except for the nativity scene during Christmas).

The existance of statues and Jesus on the cross is one of the arguments Protestants have with Catholics. We figure Jesus has gone to the cross, but is now at the right hand of God.

Having said that, the act of dying on the cross is essential to our faith, because that is the way he atoned for our sins and saved us all. That is important to keep in mind.

Before I became a Christian, I was in a very dangerous situation and, being in a Catholic home, prayed to the crucifix on the wall for safety. God answered my prayer; he sent Jesus.

The bible is very severe in this matter: "You shall not make for yourselves a graven image, or any likeness of anything that is in heaven above, or that is on the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth; you shall not bow down to them or serve them" (Duet 5:8-9a). I take that to include making any picture of anything. The Moslems prohibit drawings of anything but the abstract, after this. But Jesus frees us from the law. He did work on the Sabbath when it was good and right.
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Old 03-08-2001, 03:10 AM   #44
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kabbalah is the foundation of theologies...it's what judaism is based on. remember when g-d told abraham to kill his son? and when he almost did--he thanked abraham for his loyalty and gave him "knowledge"? well kabbalah is that knowledge...secrets of the universe...not until this century has it become available to "common" people. it's a real eye opener.

for real "hardcore" kabbalah, you have to be male, over 30, and married with children. but anyone can study it. i like kabbalah's philosophy and its use of fortune telling

a great site to start from is http:www.kabbalah.com

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Old 03-08-2001, 03:55 AM   #45
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madamc, are you a believer in kabala (sp?)? Just curious...

Let me repeat this once again: Catholic statues are NOT idol worship! This is actually a long-running controversy (i.e., the Byzantine Empire once ordered the burning of all icons and statues because the emperor thought it was idol worship), but it all depends on how you view the statue or icon. If you lost the statue, would you feel like God no longer exists? That is idolatry. Do you feel that it is just a visual representation of God who is invisible otherwise, and if the statues were destroyed, would you realize that they were just 'statues'? That is not idolatry. Many of you seem to imply that God is some dim-witted Being in the sky who doesn't know what our true intentions are. I guess I grow weary of that. If you truly believe that praying to statues is idolatry, then don't do it, because it would be in violation of your conscience, but don't start painting everyone with the same brush, just because you dislike and don't understand something.

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Old 03-08-2001, 10:07 AM   #46
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I hate threads like these, just bashing for the sake of bashing.

It is an all too common and arrogant mistake for people to believe that God has failed them when in reality, they have failed God.
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Old 03-08-2001, 10:22 AM   #47
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No offense, DebbieSG, but you imply that Catholics are not Christians. I take major offense to that, and just because Catholicism is not your way does not mean we are lesser Christians. Praying to a crucifix is praying to Jesus. We do not believe that the crucifix itself is Jesus, and we, more often, pray to Jesus without a crucifix. I am tired of God being portrayed as some dim-witted, essentialist Being who judges us solely on how our actions are perceived to outsiders, rather than our intentions behind them. He definitely can read our minds, yes?

The Catholic Church put it better in their official statement against fundamentalism. I wholeheartedly agree with its reasoning.

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Old 03-08-2001, 11:59 AM   #48
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Sincere question: Then, why use the symbols, idols, etc.?

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Old 03-08-2001, 02:24 PM   #49
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Quote:
Originally posted by kerc:
Sincere question: Then, why use the symbols, idols, etc.?

kerc

because it's easier for people to relate to...



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Old 03-08-2001, 08:19 PM   #50
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melon, to "you imply that Catholics are not Christians":

No, I was not saying that at all. Please don't take offense. I'm saying that Catholics choose to have Jesus on the Cross, which may be ok. It does seem to go against the law of making images, but if it enhances worship of God, then that would seem to justify it. By Jesus' example, doing what is good is more important than following the law. It is a matter of contention between Catholics and Protestants, BOTH of whom I believe are followers of Christ, and it shouldn't be.

As I said, I prayed to Jesus on the cross and received God's blessing. I was in St. Patrick's church in Ireland (where I attended two masses in other parts of the country) and came up to a woman who stood before a religious statue and felt a strong spiritual presence around her. I also attended an evangelical worship service and felt the holy spirit reaching into the crowd. It's not how we worship, but that we love God and each other!

And don't tag me as a fundamentalist!
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Old 03-09-2001, 09:58 AM   #51
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Well, you had to see my dilemma with one of your statements:

"Before I became a Christian, I was in a very dangerous situation and, being in a Catholic home, prayed to the crucifix on the wall for safety. God answered my prayer; he sent Jesus."

I may have misinterpreted this statement, and I may be a little over-sensitive lately (it's been an odd week at my end), but how I took it originally is that you were Catholic, prayed to a crucifix, which was useless, and then got sent your salvation in "Christian religion," i.e., no longer Catholic. I often get that a lot from the Protestant sects in my area--Catholics are evil, over-ritualistic non-Christians. Anyway, as I reread your quote, I think that that is a misplaced interpretation, and I apologize. I've been on-edge, considering all the debating I've been doing lately! I think that is a cue for me to bow out for a little while...

Anyway, I'm sorry again, and I hope there is no hard feelings!

Melon

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Old 03-09-2001, 08:57 PM   #52
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melon: nope, no hard feelings. I was Jewish before converting.
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Old 03-09-2001, 10:34 PM   #53
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Originally posted by DebbieSG:
Presbyterian
Debbie:

Would that be Presbyterian (USA) or Presbyterian Church of America (PCA)?

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Old 03-10-2001, 01:21 AM   #54
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U2Bama: You got me there. I didn't know there were different organizations. I just looked on some literature and found that it is from "U.S.A." I go to College Avenue Presbyterian Church in Oakland, CA. I had heard that there was a split between northern and southern denominations, but that they united in 1983. Can you tell me what the difference is?

While I attend this church regurlarly, Christ is more important to me than any particular denomination. I just feel comfortable worshiping in the manner that they do at our church, and feel very much a part of this "family." There is no ethic I espouse that any other Christian wouldn't believe.

If there are splits in denominations, it's really a matter of style. Like Bono saying that Catholicism is "Glamrock." BTW, I suppose that American Presbyterians are different again from those in Ireland. We ought to all get together, leave the church structures behind and praise God together!

Meanwhile, we can sure be thankful that here in America, all these different denominations can coexist without going at each other's throats like they do in Ireland. I pray for unity among us. We are all one body, but different parts. Nuff said?
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Old 03-12-2001, 01:04 PM   #55
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DebbieSG:

The congregation you attend is a member of the Presbyterian Church (USA). It is the oldest group of Presbyterian denominations, and like you said, it was re-unified from 2 groups in 1983. I'm not sure if it was a north/south pattern like the Baptists and Southern Baptists (although you can find strong Southern Baptist congregations anywhere).

The Presbyterian Church (PCA) is a newer group, and I'm not sure if/when the split from USA.

Here in Alabama, the USA group is known for a more formal style of worship but a more liberal stance on social activism (from my experiences, both similar to the United Methodist Church, to which I belong). The PCA group has a more modern style of worship but is more socially conservative.

I didn't realize thhe PCA group was relatively small in relation to the USA group, particularly because the mother PCA churhc in my area (Briarwood Presbyterian) is HUGE and haas also spun off several, fast growing neighborhood congregations. But they are in California and the rest of the nation from what I can tell.
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Old 03-12-2001, 01:06 PM   #56
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Duplicate; sorry.

[This message has been edited by U2Bama (edited 03-12-2001).]
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Old 03-12-2001, 01:43 PM   #57
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what kind of Presbyterian is the Rev. Ian Paisley???????


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Old 03-12-2001, 02:57 PM   #58
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Originally posted by dream wanderer:
what kind of Presbyterian is the Rev. Ian Paisley???????
He is a minister of the "Free Presbyterian Church" which to my knowledge is not affiliated with the PCA or USA groups. The focus of their denomination, which is in Europe and North America, seems to be anti-Catholicism and the infallibility of the Bible (w/o the Apocrypha), so he and Melon would have a lot to talk about/debate.

Another group that goes by the name "Presbyterian" is the Cumberland Presbyterian Church, founded in Kentucky and Tennessee prior to the Civil War. These days, they are mainly rural and/or African-American congregations and are characterized by gospel music in conjunction with the beliefs of mainline Presbyterians.



[This message has been edited by U2Bama (edited 03-12-2001).]
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Old 03-12-2001, 05:56 PM   #59
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U2Bama: Thanks for the info! I also learned from my pastor that PCA splintered off because they wanted to be more evangelistic.

Are you affiliated with any church?
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Old 03-12-2001, 10:01 PM   #60
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U2Bama: Thanks for the info! I also learned from my pastor that PCA splintered off because they wanted to be more evangelistic.

Are you affiliated with any church?

That sounds right, knowing what I know about the PCA congregations around here. When I was in high school and college, I know their members were very involved in Campus Life and other youth/college outreach.

I am a member of the United Methodist Church, which I have always been because that's what my family belonged to when I was born, and so was/is my wife. I like the style of worship (which varies from congregation to congregation) and I like the recognition that the UMC gives other Christian denominations (Including Protestant, Catholic & Orthodox) as part of the body of Christ. For example, we have open Communion - anyone is invited to partake, though some members of other denominations choose not to, and that is fine.
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