The Orthodox Church: Fighting Heresies and Resisting Worldly Errors

Sunday of Orthodoxy, Orthodox Church Fighting Heresies and Resisting Worldly ErrorsG. K. Chesterton points out the glorious sanity and vigorous life that has existed in the Christian Church since Her founding. While Chesterton doesn’t specifically mention the Orthodox Church I found his comments most appropriate for the Sunday of Orthodoxy we just celebrated. “This is the Faith of the Apostles, this is the Faith of the Fathers, this is the Faith of the Orthodox, this is the Faith which has established the Universe.” ~ Confession of faith from the Day of Orthodoxy

“This is the thrilling romance of Orthodoxy. People have fallen into a foolish habit of speaking of orthodoxy as something heavy, humdrum, and safe. There never was anything so perilous or so exciting as orthodoxy. It was sanity: and to be sane is more dramatic than to be mad. It was the equilibrium of a man behind madly rushing horses, seeming to stoop this way and to sway that, yet in every attitude having the grace of statuary and the accuracy of arithmetic. [Read more…]

The Orthodox Church: Fierce Defender of Theological Truths and Sound Christian Doctrines

The Orthodox Church: Fierce Defender of Theological Truths and Sound Christian DoctrinesThe masterful and wisdom-filled writings of G. K. Chesterton remind us why the Christian Church cannot afford to swerve even “a hair’s breadth” on important theological truths. While not written with regards to the Orthodox Church specifically, his insights also describe how the Orthodox Church has continually fought to defend the Truth and the Christian faith as taught by Jesus Christ, embodied in the Scriptures, preached by the Apostles, attested by the Martyrs, reflected in the writings of the Saints, and expounded by the Fathers.

“Last and most important, it is exactly this which explains what is so inexplicable to all the modern critics of the history of Christianity. I mean the monstrous wars about small points of theology, the earthquakes of emotion about a gesture or a word. It was only a matter of an inch; but an inch is everything when you are balancing. The Church could not afford to swerve a hair’s breadth on some things if she was to continue her great and daring experiment of the irregular equilibrium. Once let one idea become less powerful and some other idea would become too powerful. [Read more…]

What Are We to Make of Jesus Christ?

What Are We to Make of Jesus Christ?by C.S. Lewis –
‘What are we to make of Jesus Christ?’ This is a question, which has, in a sense, a frantically comic side. For the real question is not what are we to make of Christ, but what is He to make of us? The picture of a fly sitting deciding what it is going to make of an elephant has comic elements about it. But perhaps the questioner meant what are we to make of Him in the sense of ‘How are we to solve the historical problem set us by the recorded sayings and acts of this Man?’

This problem is to reconcile two things. On the one hand you have got the almost generally admitted depth and sanity of His moral teaching, which is not very seriously questioned, even by those who are opposed to Christianity. In fact, I find when I am arguing with very anti-God people that they rather make a point of saying, ‘I am entirely in favour of the moral teaching of Christianity’ — and there seems to be a general agreement that in the teaching of this Man and of His immediate followers, moral truth is exhibited at its purest and best. It is not sloppy idealism; it is full of wisdom and shrewdness. The whole thing is realistic, fresh to the highest degree, the product of a sane mind. That is one phenomenon. [Read more…]

Men Without Chests, Men Without Honor, Threaten Civilization

by Chris Banescu –
Men Without Chests, Men Without Honor, Threaten Civilization
Mid-twentieth century C. S. Lewis witnessed and wrote about the increasing moral breakdown and intellectual decay of Western civilization. He observed how secular and atheistic academics, philosophers, politicians, intellectuals, and cultural elites abandoned reason, denied universal truths, undermined Christian doctrines, and rejected moral principles that formed the foundation of civilized society.  “Lewis walked our cultural ground,” explained Chris R. Armstrong. “He lived, as we do, in a society that denied objective value; lacked a coherent social ethic; wallowed in instant gratification, sexual license, moral evasion, and blame-shifting; and failed to pass on a moral framework to its children.”

In his book, The Abolition of Man, Lewis warned that moral relativism (the denial of universal and objective moral truths and principles), foolish emotionalism, and the rejection of reason would bring about cultural decay and growing depravity. [Read more…]

Christian Life Lived in the Midst of Enemies

Christian Life Lived in the Midst of Enemies“Jesus Christ lived in the midst of his enemies. At the end all his disciples deserted him. On the Cross he was utterly alone, surrounded by evildoers and mockers. For this cause he had come, to bring peace to the enemies of God. So the Christian, too, belongs not in the seclusion of a cloistered life but in the thick of foes. There is his commission, his work.

‘The kingdom is to be in the midst of your enemies. And he who will not suffer this does not want to be of the Kingdom of Christ; he wants to be among friends, to sit among roses and lilies, not with the bad people but the devout people. O you blasphemers and betrayers of Christ! If Christ had done what you are doing who would ever have been spared?’ (Martin Luther).” ~ Dietrich Bonhoeffer

Have the Courage to Be Fools for Christ

Have the Courage to Be Fools for Christ - Justice Antonin Scalia “God assumed from the beginning that the wise of the world would view Christians as fools…and He has not been disappointed. Devout Christians are destined to be regarded as fools in modern society. We are fools for Christ’s sake. We must pray for courage to endure the scorn of the sophisticated world. If I have brought any message today, it is this: Have the courage to have your wisdom regarded as stupidity. Be fools for Christ. And have the courage to suffer the contempt of the sophisticated world.” ~ Justice Antonin Scalia

God is Good and Goodness is Divine

God is not merely good, but goodness; goodness is not merely divine, but God.by Chris Banescu –

Most of recorded human history points to the reality of the Moral Law, written in our hearts, that governs the affairs of men. Since the beginning of time mankind has recognized (more definitively and clearly in some ages and civilizations than others) that universal concepts of right and wrong and good and evil do in fact exist.

We acknowledge this timeless truth every time we judge whether a person’s behavior is just or unjust, right or wrong, or good or evil. We make this determination not by claiming that a specific act is only “good” if we subjectively like and agree with it, but rather by comparing it with an actual standard of good and evil. Such an evaluation is logical only if these standards are real and absolute, otherwise it would make no sense in labeling anything as evil or good. [Read more…]

Lord, Help Me Be Decisive

Monahia Siluana Vlad, Mother Siluana Vladby Chris Banescu –

How can we become decisive, to know what we need to do?

We should ask God what to do and ask Him for decisiveness. There is no other way. Otherwise, we will be resolute one month, and after one month, we can fall worse than before. This is the work of the enemy [the devil] when we start working without God. Without the Lord we can do nothing. Nothing!

We must start from where we are, from our helplessness, not from the height of our desires. A true Christian makes the sign of the Cross all day long, in every place and in all work. Why? So he can start with God and His power, and not rely solely on our helplessness.

We wonder why we can’t do something. This is a sign of faithlessness. [Read more…]

Without a Sense of Moral Order Man Cannot Attain Any Order

Without a Sense of Moral Order Man Cannot Attain Any Orderby Chris Banescu –

The timeless and Christ-centered wisdom of Malcolm Muggeridge reminds us why the world around us is such a big mess, especially in the West. The main source of our troubles is the loss of our moral order — anchored in and supported by God — without which no other order can be attained.

“It’s good and evil after all that provide the theme of the drama of our mortal existence. In this sense you might capture them [enlighten them] with the positive and negative points that generate an electric current. Transpose the points and the current fails, the lights go out, darkness falls and all is confusion.

What I wish to put to you here is that the darkness falling on our civilization is likewise due to a transposition of good and evil. In other words, that we are suffering not from an energy crisis or an over-population crisis or an unemployment crisis – from none of these ills that are commonly specified. The root cause of trouble is that we have lost our sense of moral order in the universe without which no order whatsoever, economic, social, political is attainable. [Read more…]