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To: RegulatorCountry

Trent is closer to Orthodoxy than to Protestantism, although Orthodoxy doesn’t use the Scholastic categories of Trent. All apostolic Christians regard faith alone as a heresy.

The Orthodox Councils of Jerusalem and Jassy reaffirmed Trent’s definition against Protestantism a century later.

The Council of Jerusalem approved the Confession of Dositheus:

Decree 3

We believe the most good God to have from eternity predestinated unto glory those whom He has chosen, and to have consigned unto condemnation those whom He has rejected; but not so that He would justify the one, and consign and condemn the other without cause. For that would be contrary to the nature of God, who is the common Father of all, and no respecter of persons, and would have all men to be saved, and to come to the knowledge of the truth {1 Timothy 2:4}. But since He foreknew the one would make a right use of their free-will, and the other a wrong, He predestinated the one, or condemned the other. And we understand the use of free-will thus, that the Divine and illuminating grace, and which we call preventing [or, prevenient] grace, being, as a light to those in darkness, by the Divine goodness imparted to all, to those that are willing to obey this — for it is of use only to the willing, not to the unwilling — and co-operate with it, in what it requires as necessary to salvation, there is consequently granted particular grace. This grace co-operates with us, and enables us, and makes us to persevere in the love of God, that is to say, in performing those good things that God would have us to do, and which His preventing grace admonishes us that we should do, justifies us, and makes us predestinated. But those who will not obey, and co-operate with grace; and, therefore, will not observe those things that God would have us perform, and that abuse in the service of Satan the free-will, which they have received of God to perform voluntarily what is good, are consigned to eternal condemnation.

But to say, as the most wicked heretics do and as is contained in the Chapter [of Cyril’s’ Confession] to which this answers — that God, in predestinating, or condemning, did not consider in any way the works of those predestinated, or condemned, we know to be profane and impious. For thus Scripture would be opposed to itself, since it promises the believer salvation through works, yet supposes God to be its sole author, by His sole illuminating grace, which He bestows without preceding works, to show to man the truth of divine things, and to teach him how he may co-operate with it, if he will, and do what is good and acceptable, and so obtain salvation. He takes not away the power to will — to will to obey, or not obey him.

But than to affirm that the Divine Will is thus solely and without cause the author of their condemnation, what greater defamation can be fixed upon God? and what greater injury and blasphemy can be offered to the Most High? We do know that the Deity is not tempted with evils, {cf. James 1:13} and that He equally wills the salvation of all, since there is no respect of persons with Him. we do confess that for those who through their own wicked choice, and their impenitent heart, have become vessels of dishonor, there is justly decreed condemnation. But of eternal punishment, of cruelty, of pitilessness, and of inhumanity, we never, never say God is the author, who tells us that there is joy in heaven over one sinner that repents. {Luke 15:7} Far be it from us, while we have our senses, to believe or to think this; and we do subject to an eternal anathema those who say and think such things, and esteem them to be worse than any infidels.

Decree 13

We believe a man to be not simply justified through faith alone, but through faith which works through love, that is to say, through faith and works. But [the idea] that faith can fulfill the function of a hand that lays hold on the righteousness which is in Christ, and can then apply it unto us for salvation, we know to be far from all Orthodoxy. For faith so understood would be possible in all, and so none could miss salvation, which is obviously false. But on the contrary, we rather believe that it is not the correlative of faith, but the faith which is in us, justifies through works, with Christ. But we regard works not as witnesses certifying our calling, but as being fruits in themselves, through which faith becomes efficacious, and as in themselves meriting, through the Divine promises {cf. 2 Corinthians 5:10} that each of the Faithful may receive what is done through his own body, whether it be good or bad.

The Coptic Orthodox Church teaches:
Do we get to heaven by faith alone, (John 3:16, Romans 3:28, Acts 13:39, and Ephesians 2:8-9) or by both works and faith?

The Holy Bible clearly says “Thus also faith by itself, if it does not have works, is dead” (James 2:17). St. James continues saying that faith alone is not enough; for even the demons believe “You believe that there is one God. You do well. Even the demons believe; and tremble! But do you want to know, O foolish man, that faith without works is dead?” (James 2:19-20)

Salvation is by the Grace of God alone. Our Lord died on the cross to save all humanity. That is why those who do not believe in this act on the cross will not be saved. So faith has to come first. In order for your faith to claim existence, it has to be manifested in your deeds. A man is justified by faith but righteousness must follow justification. You cannot be believing one thing and doing something that would contradict your belief. Faith is activated through our deeds.

Many verses in the Holy Bible show the importance of works “For the Son of Man will come in the glory of His Father with His angels, and then He will reward each according to his works” (Mt 16:27).”Do not marvel at this; for the hour is coming in which all who are in the graves will hear His voice and come forth; those who have done good, to the resurrection of life, and those who have done evil, to the resurrection of condemnation” (John 5:28).

Our Lord Jesus Christ showed us a glimpse of how judgment will be based on deeds. For He said, “Then the King will say to those on His right hand, “Come, you blessed of My Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world for I was hungry and you gave Me food; I was thirsty and you gave Me drink; I was a stranger and you took Me in; ‘I was naked and you clothed Me; I was sick and you visited Me; I was in prison and you came to Me” (Mt 25:34-36).

37 posted on 12/11/2011 9:17:59 PM PST by rzman21
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To: MarkBsnr; D-fendr; Jvette; Judith Anne; narses

The Coptic Orthodox Church shares the same teaching as the Catholic Church on Justification:

Are you saved?

Are you going to heaven when you die?

For more information please see this VIDEO (PLAY)


Hopefully, you have answered both of these questions with a YES! If not, please read on.

Many people feel that if they go to church every Sunday, put money in the offering and say a prayer, they will make it to heaven.

God demands much more than that.

The Bible tells us that we must be “born again” (John 3:3). Being “saved” and “born again” are the same thing. It means that you have accepted Jesus as your Lord and Saviour and that you believe that Jesus died for your sins, was buried, and was resurrected (1st Corinthians 15:3-4, Romans 10:9, Romans 5:8). You must also confess and repent of your sins (1st John 1:9, Luke 13:3).

There is only ONE way to heaven and that’s through Jesus. He says “I am the door” (John 10:9) and that no one gets to the Father except through Him (John 14:6).

The Lord is knocking on the door of your heart and it’s up to you to let him in (Revelation 3:20).

“For what will it profit a man if he gains the whole world, and loses his own soul?” Mark 8:36

Here are the basic steps to Salvation.

Read the Bible for yourself. While reading the scriptures ask the Lord to guide you through them and teach you what you need to be taught. It’s fine to listen to preachers but you MUST also read the scriptures for yourself especially nowadays that so many false prophets are out trying to distort God’s Word (Matthew 24:11, Mark 13:22, 2nd Peter 2:1-3).

The Word is your sword! (Ephesians 6:17)

First you must realise that you are a sinner.

“for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.” Romans 3:23

Understand the Penalty of sin.

God is eternal, unchanging, and completely just. Total justice demands punishment for those who break the laws of God, and His eternal nature makes the duration of that punishment also eternal. The term “death” in Romans 6:23 refers to eternal spiritual death, endless separation from God, that is the just punishment for sin. The Bible refers to the place of punishment as Hell.

“for the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord” Romans 6:23

Confess your sins.

“If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” (1John 1:9)

“For with the heart one believes unto righteousness, and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.” Romans 10:10

Repent and turn from your sin.

“Repent therefore and be converted, that your sins may be blotted out,...” Acts 3:19

“I tell you, No; but unless you repent you will all likewise perish.” Luke 13:3

“Likewise, I say to you, there is joy in the presence of the angels of God over one sinner who repents” Luke 15:10

Believe that Jesus Died to pay for your sins.

“For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.” John 3:16

“But God demonstrates his own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” Romans 5:8

“that Jesus died for our sins according to the scriptures, and that He was buried, and that He rose again on the third day according to the scriptures” 1st Corinthians 15:3-4

Be Baptised In The Name Of The Father & The Son & The Holy Spirit

The mode of baptism is used in the definition of full water immersion. The Greek for the word ‘baptizo’ means to immerse, plunge, dip, or bury in water. The very Greek word itself excludes it from meaning “sprinkling.”

Matthew 3:13-16 Then Jesus came from Galilee to the Jordan to John, to be baptised by him. John would have prevented him, saying, “I need to be baptised by you, and do you come to me?” But Jesus answered him, “Let it be so now; for thus it is fitting for us to fulfil all righteousness.” Then he consented. And when Jesus was baptized, he went up immediately from the water, and behold, the heavens were opened and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove, and alighting on him; and lo, a voice from heaven, saying, “This is my beloved Son, with whom I am well pleased.”

Ephesians 4:4-5 There is one body, and one Spirit, even as you are called in one hope of your calling; One Lord, one faith, one baptism, One God and Father of all, who is above all, and through all, and in you all.

Romans 6:3-5 Do you not know that all of us who have been baptised into Christ Jesus were baptised into his death? We were buried therefore with him by baptism into death, so that as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, we too might walk in newness of life. For if we have been united with him in a death like his, we shall certainly be united with him in a resurrection like his.

I Peter 3:21 This is a symbol of baptism, which now saves you also - not the removal of dirt from the body, but the answer of a good conscience toward God, it saves you by the resurrection of Jesus Christ.

Colossians 2:12 and you were buried with him in baptism, in which you were also raised with him through faith in the working of God, who raised him from the dead.

John 3:1-5 Now there was a man of the Pharisees, named Nicodemus, a ruler of the Jews. This man came to Jesus by night and said to him, “Rabbi, we know that you are a teacher come from God; for no one can do these signs that you do, unless God is with him.” Jesus answered him, “I tell you the truth, unless one is born anew, he cannot see the kingdom of God.” Nicodemus said to him, “How can a man be born when he is old? Can he enter a second time into his mother’s womb and be born?” Jesus answered, “I tell you the truth, unless one is born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God.

Acts 8:26-40 And the angel of the Lord spoke to Philip, saying, Get up, and go toward the south unto the way that goes down from Jerusalem to Gaza, which is desert. And he got up and went: and, behold, a man of Ethiopia, an eunuch of great authority under Candace queen of the Ethiopians, who had the charge of all her treasure, and had come to Jerusalem to worship, Was returning, and sitting in his chariot read Isaiah the prophet. Then the Spirit said to Philip, Go near, and stay close to this chariot. And Philip ran up to him, and heard him reading the prophet Isaiah, and said, Do you understand what you are reading? And he said, How can I, except someone should guide me? And he invited Philip to come up and sit with him. The place of the scripture which he read was this, “He was led as a sheep to the slaughter; and like a lamb dumb before his shearer, so opened he not his mouth: In his humiliation his judgment was taken away: and who shall declare his generation? for his life is taken from the earth.” And the eunuch answered Philip, and said, I ask you, of whom is the prophet speaking? of himself, or of some other man? Then Philip opened his mouth, and began at the same scripture, and preached to him Jesus. And as they went on their way, they came to some water: and the eunuch said, See, here is water; what keeps me from being baptized? And Philip said, If you believe with all your heart, you may. And he answered and said, I believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God. And he commanded the chariot to stop: and they both went down into the water, both Philip and the eunuch; and Philip baptised him. And when they came up out of the water, the Spirit of the Lord caught away Philip, and the eunuch saw him no more: but he went on his way rejoicing. But Philip was found at Azotus: and passing through he preached in all the cities, till he came to Caesarea.

Galatians 3:26-27 For you are all sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus, for as many of you as were baptised into Christ have clothed yourselves with Christ.

Mark 16:15-16 And he said unto them, Go into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature. He that believes and is baptised shall be saved, and he that disbelieves shall be condemned.

Titus 3:5 Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewal of the Holy Spirit

Matthew 28:19-20 Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, to the close of the age.

Acts 2:38-41 And Peter said to them, “Repent, and be baptised every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins; and you shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. For the promise is to you and to your children and to all that are far off, every one whom the Lord our God calls to him.” And he testified with many other words and exhorted them, saying, “Save yourselves from this crooked generation.” So those who received his word were baptized, and there were added that day about three thousand souls

Acts 22:16 And now why do you wait? Rise and be baptized, and wash away your sins, calling on his name

Receive the Flesh and Blood of Christ (Holy Eucharist)

In the ancient sacrifices, both Jewish and pagan, those who took part were given part of the meat of the sacrificed animal, in the hope of a sort of communion with the divinity. In the Mass, after the sacrifice itself is completed, we have the unspeakable privilege of receiving the flesh and blood of the Divine Victim, who is not dead, but living, and comes to give life in abundance to our souls.

This Holy Communion, if we are rightly disposed, produces an increase in sanctifying grace - the ability to take in the vision of God in the life to come - plus a special claim to actual graces as needed, forgiveness of venial sin for which one is repentant, help to keep from mortal sin, and an increase in the virtue of love.

But dispositions are needed, for even though the Eucharist contains the very Author of all grace, it does not operate like magic: we must do what we can.

We must of course have the state of grace. Without it it would be sacrilege, and an added mortal sin to receive. Right intention is also needed, i.e., to please God, to be more closely united with Him, to gain a remedy for our weaknesses.

It is not required to be free from all venial sin. The reception itself may forgive venial sins for which one is sorry. But the fruits of receiving are reduced. It is especially needed that one be free from all deliberate venial sin - in contrast to sins of weakness, sins when one is taken off guard.

For fullest benefits, we should be free from all attachment to anything sinful. Some have as it were a gap in their purpose of amendment, as if they said, for example: “I do not intend to commit mortal sins, nor all venial sins. But there are some reservations: if it is hard to stick to the truth, I will not do so, or if it is hard to keep a conversation going without a bit of detraction, that is all right too. These dispositions, sometimes called “affection to venial sin” impose as it were a clamp on one’s heart, for he/she has decided to go so far and no farther. So they effectively prevent spiritual growth beyond a certain point. How sad that many who could grow much, block growth by this means.

But mere carelessness, lack of preparation, or lack of thanksgiving can be harmful. If one does not constantly try to grow spiritually, receiving the Eucharist would “lack its full redeeming effectiveness” and there could even be a spiritual loss. To receive out of mere routine, with no special care, no thanksgiving, is more apt to cause spiritual loss than gain.

[For he that eateth and drinketh unworthily eateth and drinketh judgment to himself, not discerning the body of the Lord. (1Cor:11:29)]
To prepare, one should think in advance about what he/she is going to do, especially during the Mass. After receiving, it is valuable to try for recollection, in humility to adore the Lord present we adore the Lord present within us, to give thanks, to express sorrow for deficiencies, to ask for helps to do better. It is very good to stay a few minutes after the end of the Mass to continue this thanksgiving.

The Holy Eucharistic fast in the Coptic faith is 9 hours starting at midnight and in other late masses still 9 hours before communion - abstaining from food and drink. The time is computed up to the actual time of reception. The sick, even if not confined to bed, and the elderly, need to observe and adopt a time scale that would be fitting to their health, it is always advisable to refer to the Pastor for guidance in these matters as the rules apply to different persons according to their ability to abstain from food or drink.

Children should begin to receive when they are still suckling just after the rituals of baptism. :[But Jesus said to them: Suffer the little children, and forbid them not to come to me: for the kingdom of heaven is for such. (Mt:19:14) This automatically repels evil spirits from childhood and allows the child to build his character growing up as a devoted Christian. If later on he or she chooses a different direction, then they will be responsible for their own actions but as Christian parents we should lead them and guide them to know God - Once one has begun to receive, there is the obligation of receiving at least once a month, unless there is a reasonable cause. .

When actual reception is not possible due to some reason or the other, one may profitably make a spiritual communion, by a passionate desire to receive the sacrament. This keeps the soul united with Jesus during the day, and prepares better for the actual reception.

Accept Christ as Lord and Saviour.

“But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, to those who believe in His name:” John 1:12

For “whoever calls on the name of the Lord shall be saved” Romans 10:13 also Joel 2:32

“that if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved.” Romans 10:9

“For by grace you have been saved through faith, and not that of yourselves; it is the gift of God” Ephesians 2:8

Invite Jesus into your life today for an everlasting tomorrow!

“Thanks be to God for his indescribable gift!” 2nd Corinthians 9:15

“Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new.” 2nd Corinthians 5:17.

False Prophets and the definition of SALVATION

For there shall be a time when they will not endure sound doctrine but, according to their own desires, they will heap to themselves teachers having itching ears: (2Tm:4:3)

“Beware of false prophets, who come to you in the clothing of sheep, but inwardly they are ravening wolves.” (Mt:7:15)

Unlike the Coptic Orthodox Doctrine, Protestantism rejected attempts to tie God’s revelation to earthly institutions and strictly adhered to the Word of God as sole authority in matters of faith and practice (sola scriptura). Central in the reformers’ understanding of the biblical message is the justification of the sinner by faith alone. The church is understood as a fellowship, and the priesthood of all believers is stressed. Innumerable sects and denominations sprang from these roots, including Quakers, Baptists, Pentecostals, Congregationalists, Methodists, and nondenominational assemblies.

The Holy Bible bares testimony that by faith alone no one is saved, and there is no “short cut to heaven” as I call it. We all agree with one mind that Our Lord Jesus Christ has already paid the price for our sins on the cross regardless of what Christian religion we belong to. But that does not mean that we are automatically saved. We have to fight and resist temptation according to God’s commandments.

For guidance I have included some verses from the Bible that prove we have to fight hard with the help of God in order not to fall into sin and in addition we also have to work hard to do good works:-

They profess that they know God: but in their works they deny him: being abominable and incredulous and to every good work reprobate. (Ti:1:16)

What shall it profit, my brethren, if a man say he hath faith, but hath not works? Shall faith be able to save him? (Jms:2:14)

So faith also, if it have not works, is dead in itself. (Jms:2:17)

But some man will say: Thou hast faith, and I have works. Shew me thy faith without works; and I will shew thee, by works, my faith. (Jms:2:18)

But wilt thou know, O vain man, that faith without works is dead? (Jms:2:20)

Was not Abraham our father justified by works, offering up Isaac his son upon the altar? (Jms:2:21)

Seest thou that faith did cooperate with his works and by works faith was made perfect? (Jms:2:22)

For even as the body without the spirit is dead: so also faith without works is dead. (Jms:2:26)

Do you see that by works a man is justified, and not by faith only? (Jms:2:24)

So let your light shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father who is in heaven. (Mt:5:16)

That the man of God may be perfect, furnished to every good work. (2Tm:3:17)

Wherefore, brethren, labour the more, that by good works you may make sure your calling and election. For doing these things, you shall not sin at any time. (2Pt:1:10)

Be mindful therefore from whence thou art fallen: and do penance and do the first works. Or else I come to thee and will move thy candlestick out of its place, except thou do penance. (Rv:2:5)

“I have fought a good fight: I have finished my course: I have kept the faith. (2Tm:4:7)

Behold, I come quickly: and my reward is with me, to render to every man according to his works. (Rv:22:12)

38 posted on 12/11/2011 9:21:05 PM PST by rzman21
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To: rzman21
Thank you for clarifying. What remains unclarified, however, is this statement made in error:

Your words. Protestants twist St. Paul’s words just as St. Peter predicted.

Seeing as how I've neither cited a passage from any book written by the Apostle Paul nor referenced chapter and verse, there were no words to twist. It was a false accusation.

39 posted on 12/11/2011 9:24:38 PM PST by RegulatorCountry
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