The hardest teaching

Camden Martinez
Camden Martinez

What is the hardest teaching of Christianity/your denomination that you find most difficult to accept? For me it's euthanasia. Of course, I accept that it's murder and cannot be allowed, but it's difficult for me and my heart cannot fully oppose it, as much as I would want to. I can't help but to feel sympathetic torwards people wanting to end their suffering

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Hunter Hill
Hunter Hill

That unbaptized children go to Hell. I'm not saying I disagree, but I just wish it were not true. But it is, although modernists are trying to claim otherwise now. Of course, if it were up to me alone, all people would be saved, but reasonably the likelihood is extremely low, and our Lord said explicitly that few will be saved, anyway.

Alternatively, that vaginal sex is the only non-sinful sex act. It's not a huge deal but at the same time I don't understand the reason behind it. There are 3 categories of sins - sins against God (apostasy), sins against the others (murder), and sins against the self (concupiscence). Sex acts that are for the sake of self-fulfillment, rather than for the pleausre of your wife/husband, fall under both sinning against them (because it is essentially rape) and sinning against yourself (because you're essentially masturbating). I just don't get why non-vaginal sex acts (which I will avoid describing here) automatically fall under these. I guess that every sex act has to make procreation a strong possibility, but then… when does a "sex act" begin and end? Is it not possible to have multiple kinds of intercourse within one "session" and simply have vaginal intercourse be one of them? Shouldn't we do absolutely everything to make procreation as likely as possible, including taking fertility-enhancing methods? If it is a grave sin to willfully let your semen be laid down anywhere but inside your wife's vagina, doesn't that make nocturnal emissions sinful, if they are a result of willfully avoiding masturbation? What about when priests permit contraception by economy? And so on.
I'm going on and on about this because I legitimately don't get it, and this isn't something my priest is very willing to discuss either (being a monk probably doesn't help). My girlfriend wants to be Orthodox but this is a major stumbling block for her (as if it weren't already a problem that smoking, and getting drunk, are grave sins that she must stop also).

Chase Gray
Chase Gray

I think one of the hardest (Catholic) teachings must be concerning marriage.
The fact that once you've been married to a woman, you can't marry another woman, even if your wife has left you and went live with her new boyfriend/husband (in the Civil realm) 20 years ago…Since she's still alive, you are still married to her religiously, so even if you are a perfect Christian and that she left you to "discover herself", you are pretty much condemned to live the rest of your life alone, without any loving life and without any children to raise and love.
Yep, probably one of the hardest teachings.

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Daniel Roberts
Daniel Roberts

Regarding unbaptised children going to hell, I remember reading somewhere on the board that they go to "limbo", some place in hell where there is no fire.

Hunter Martinez
Hunter Martinez

"limbo", some place in hell where there is no fire.
I just read that this is an unofficial teaching of the Church and that the Church hasn't made a formal stance on this issue. What bothers me (and I'm not a Christian yet) is how the Catholic Church seems to always want to answer all the question, leaving nothing in unanswered.

The Bible from my understanding says nothing about unbaptized children, yet the Church insists on giving a vague answer. Why can't the Church just leave these question be? God hasn't revealed everything to us, it will only result in confusion and misinterpretation if we try to answer everything.

Maybe this is what makes Orthodoxy different from Catholicism, Orthodoxy leaves some question unanswered and appeals to mystery

Luke Williams
Luke Williams

The biggest problem is that trying to give an answer to everything leads to Doubt and doubt leads to Disbelief. Is my analysis of this wrong?

Colton Perry
Colton Perry

I don't see why shouldn't limbo and purgatory be in hell, understood as "underworld". It's only a difference between states.

Yes, it's wrong. You're inversing the natural order. Disbelief leads to doubt, which then leads to inquiry. And even then, this is not the exclusive path towards inquiry.

John Hall
John Hall

took me a while to understand why you have to accept death if you’re ever threatened with execution if you don’t disavow God.

Hudson Walker
Hudson Walker

Limbo isn't an Orthodox teaching. Orthodoxy believes that unbaptized infants go to Hell (although nonetheless there are prayers of intercession for their salvation).

Carter Lee
Carter Lee

Your issue is that you view suffering as a bad thing. Suffering is justice due to original sin, it is also the opportunity to merit grace and grow in virtue. Unwillingness to suffer is effeminacy.

Mason Murphy
Mason Murphy

The hardest thing for me is the idea that my beloved dog may not join me in Heaven (If I make it to Heaven). I've heard a lot of conflicting arguments on the matter and when I asked my priest he said, "The reality of it is we do not know."

Jaxson Price
Jaxson Price

That unbaptized children go to Hell. I'm not saying I disagree, but I just wish it were not true. But it is, although modernists are trying to claim otherwise now
It's not just modernists. Church fathers not named Augustine or Gregory the Great (not other Gregorys) generally disagreed with it too. Those "modern" Vatican documents proposing this are actually trying to look at the whole church for a change.

James Roberts
James Roberts

What church fathers?

Ethan Sanders
Ethan Sanders

Limbo is in Hell for catholics though.

Jackson Wilson
Jackson Wilson

I don't care about what the Catholics decide to do.

I see. That seems to be similar to the Orthodox teaching then - unbaptized infants are eternally condemned, but their punishment isn't as harsh as it is for those who consciously choose sin.

Caleb Hall
Caleb Hall

Agreed. At that point you would have just been better off not marrying in the first place.

Jayden Lee
Jayden Lee

The Catholic Church is currently teaching that Paul VI and JP II are saints. This is blatantly impossible (how can someone who kissed a Koran and never repented be in Heaven?), but declarations of sainthood are supposed to be ex cathedra, so I'm pretty much on the verge of admitting that Catholicism is false.

Alexander Torres
Alexander Torres

when the biggest theological issue that justifies disqualifying a denomination is who was canonized
Damn, you guys have it good.

Evan Moore
Evan Moore

kissing a book of fiction is a sin
Man, you LARPers crack me up.

Blake Martinez
Blake Martinez

when kissing a book means all the other good you did in life is disqualified
Wew, prot. There are saints in heaven that did worse than kiss a book.

Juan Evans
Juan Evans

kissing a book of fiction is a sin
lighting a stick of incense in front of a statue of a fictional character is a sin
eating meat from an animal sacrificed to a fictional character is sin

Gavin Anderson
Gavin Anderson

They're only in Heaven if they repented of those sins, which JP II never did.

Bentley Cook
Bentley Cook

1)Assuming kissing a work of fiction is a sin. So did you follow JPII around 24/7 when he was pontiff? You don't know that he didn't repent. Popes go to confession too.
2) Kissing a book is not a sin. Offering up incense and meat to a false god is a sin, but kissing a book is not a sin. Get over yourself, LARPer.

Easton Brown
Easton Brown

Kissing the holy book of a false religion is apostasy. Stop acting like he just kissed some random book. There is absolutely no difference between what he did and someone bowing down to a statue of Caesar.

Christopher Anderson
Christopher Anderson

Not sure I'm convinced but I do think those guys are charming and hilarious.

Hudson Clark
Hudson Clark

Thing is, those pagan religions literally worship the statues as if they were gods. They eat the meat because they think their god has empowered the meat with their essence.
Muslims don't even worship the Quran. It is just a book like the Bible is just a book. If kissing a book is now an act of worship, you not kissing the bible everyday makes you the apostate.

Anthony Jackson
Anthony Jackson

If kissing a book is now an act of worship, you not kissing the bible everyday makes you the apostate.
I'm amazed that you thought this sentence made sense in any way.

Robert Thompson
Robert Thompson

Kissing the holy book of a false religion is apostasy.
[citation needed]

Jayden Carter
Jayden Carter

Kissing the holy book of a false religion is apostasy.
Oh crap … I kissed a KJV the other day. Damn Protties got me again!

Justin Williams
Justin Williams

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: And will indeed turn away their hearing from the truth, but will be turned unto fables.

Andrew Campbell
Andrew Campbell

be (you)
thinks kissing a book is an act of worship to the god it teaches about.
thinks not kissing the Bible is okay

So either kissing a book is an act of worship or it isn't. Which is it, prot?

Oliver Brown
Oliver Brown

You're claiming that not performing every possible act of reverence towards God every single day makes someone an apostate?

Jackson Nelson
Jackson Nelson

Since we are making ridiculous statements, yes. If kissing a book is an act of worship, not kissing the Bible means you don't worship God.

Ayden Smith
Ayden Smith

That's not a citation. Show me where kissing a copy of Harry Potter makes me an apostate.

Tyler King
Tyler King

I'm not sure why you keep pressing ahead full steam with this. Disingenuous or just stupid? Either way not worth my time.
If Harry Potter was a religion then kissing a Harry Potter book would make you an apostate, yes. It's not a religion though, so I'm not sure why you're bringing it up.

Christian Powell
Christian Powell

If Harry Potter was a religion
It is. There are at least 3 religious groups in the US based on Harry Potter. Now … back up your claim that kissing a book makes you an apostate.

Asher Hill
Asher Hill

Harry Potter is not a religion.

Daniel Cox
Daniel Cox

Why are you avoiding what should be a very simple question?

Jayden Adams
Jayden Adams

What is your question?

Lucas Jenkins
Lucas Jenkins

See:

Austin Stewart
Austin Stewart

Exodus 20:3
Thou shalt not have strange gods before me.
Hence it is certainly forbidden to kiss (implying veneration, implying respect, implying endorsement) the holy book of a false religion, in exactly the same way burning incense to Caesar, or bowing to a stone image of a pagan god, is forbidden.

Daniel Martin
Daniel Martin

How is kissing something an act of worship?

Tyler Campbell
Tyler Campbell

No "implying". Prove that kissing something is a literal act of worship.

Ian Anderson
Ian Anderson

Where is the word "worship" in Exodus 20:3? ANY act of veneration, respect, endorsement, fellowship, etc. towards a false religion is clearly forbidden here, and the Church has always (before Vatican II anyway) understood this.
You deny that a kiss is an act of veneration or respect?

John Hall
John Hall

"Respect" is not worship.

JP2 on Islam: "The image of believers in Allah who, without caring about time or place, fall to their knees and immerse themselves in prayer remains a model for all those who invoke the true God, in particular for those Christians who, having deserted their magnificent cathedrals, pray only a little or not at all."

Note he says "Allah" and "true God" as separate things. He respected their devotion to prayer, but stated absolutely that they weren't worshiping the "true God".

If you think kissing something is an act of worship, I hope you never get married or have kids. After all, you don't want to go kissing them because then you'll be apostate.

Jeremiah Kelly
Jeremiah Kelly

pretty sure kissing something isn't worshiping it fam

Hudson Diaz
Hudson Diaz

Judas kissed Jesus, bro.

Aiden Price
Aiden Price

"Respect" is not worship.
I don't care what you want to call it. The word "worship" is not in Exodus 20:3. It's forbidden.
JP2 on Islam: "The image of believers in Allah who, without caring about time or place, fall to their knees and immerse themselves in prayer remains a model for all those who invoke the true God, in particular for those Christians who, having deserted their magnificent cathedrals, pray only a little or not at all."
I'm amazed that you would post a quote of JP II praising Islam in an attempt to exonerate him.
Note he says "Allah" and "true God" as separate things. He respected their devotion to prayer, but stated absolutely that they weren't worshiping the "true God".
It's not even clear that he is distinguishing between "Allah" and "true God" in that quote. It could just as easily be read as him conflating the two.
If you think kissing something is an act of worship
Kissing the holy book of a false religion is an act of apostasy. Why do you keep twisting my words and pretending that I'm claiming that kissing anything is apostasy? First "Harry Potter" (haha) now this. I hope you realize that you are being extremely dishonest and you need to confess this before you next take communion.
Is kissing an idol an act of worship? And where is the word "worship" in Exodus 20:3? It doesn't matter whether you want to claim that it's not technically "worship," it's apostasy either way.

Eli Thomas
Eli Thomas

Kissing the holy book of a false religion is an act of apostasy.
[CITATION NEEDED]

Michael Wood
Michael Wood

you need to confess this
You want me to confess that some rando user on the internet can't actually cite his source?

Dylan Collins
Dylan Collins

Exodus 20:3
I want you to confess to lying, which is a sin. I really hope your hurt pride from an Internet argument doesn't prevent you from going to confession and receiving absolution for your sin.

Jonathan Ross
Jonathan Ross

I'm not sure what you're trying to say.

Brody Collins
Brody Collins

Exodus 20:3
That doesn't say, "Kissing a Qur'an is apostasy". Why do you think God would hide knowledge or make something vague? If kissing a book could be apostasy, it would be literal and not subject to your personal "I hate the Pope" fee-fees. One last chance. Cite your source.

Ayden Parker
Ayden Parker

Judas kissing Jesus, the literal God made flesh, wasn't an act of worship. It was an act of betrayal. So, how can the Pope kissing a book be an act of apostasy?

Ryan Harris
Ryan Harris

His Holiness was betraying Islam! Booyah.

Landon Harris
Landon Harris

So according to you, everything the Bible doesn't explicitly list as a banned act of apostasy is OK? So participating in a Haitian voodoo ceremony isn't apostasy according to you?
He kissed Jesus because kissing was the customary greeting, done as a mark of… respect. He just greeted Jesus first to show the pharisees who he was.

Is your argument that JP II was marking the Koran for death when he kissed it? Are you arguing that kissing in a religious context is ever done in a negative way?

Jeremiah Gomez
Jeremiah Gomez

Can you literally not see the difference between kissing a book and rubbing yourself in chicken blood to appease Bondye?

Jaxon Young
Jaxon Young

Haitian voodoo
doesn't know the difference between voudoun and hoodoo
You think you have so many enemies, but you don't even know them. Sad.

Oliver Diaz
Oliver Diaz

everything the Bible doesn't explicitly list as a banned act is OK
YES! That's how it works. If God didn't say it was forbidden, then it's perfectly fine. Did you just convert yesterday or something?

Ethan Morgan
Ethan Morgan

Can you literally not see how they both contradict Exodus 20:3?
a book
Stop obfuscating. He didn't kiss "a book." He kissed THE KORAN.

Adam Nelson
Adam Nelson

So, you accept that the Qur'an is a holy book. That's your problem, son. To me it's no different than Harry Potter.

Levi Reyes
Levi Reyes

God didn't explicitly say having sex with a nine-year-old is forbidden, either. I guess maybe this strange doctrine of yours is why you have no problem with Islam and its pedophile prophet.

Caleb Wilson
Caleb Wilson

God didn't explicitly say having sex with a nine-year-old is forbidden
Matthew 18.6

Ian Hall
Ian Hall

By that logic burning incense to the Emperor wouldn't be apostasy either because the statue isn't really alive… By the way, the Bible says that sacrifices offered to idols are offered to devils. The Koran isn't just some fantasy book, it quite literally has devils behind it and its false religion.

Austin Reyes
Austin Reyes

condoning pre-marital sex
Nice try, habib.

Liam Moore
Liam Moore

The Koran isn't just some fantasy book
So, you DO see it as a holy book! gb2 /islam/. you've been found out.

Benjamin Sanchez
Benjamin Sanchez

Just filter than heathen. Derailed this whole thread.

David Ross
David Ross

Mohammed and Aisha were married.
1 Corinthians 19-20
What then? Do I say, that what is offered in sacrifice to idols, is any thing? Or, that the idol is any thing? But the things which the heathens sacrifice, they sacrifice to devils, and not to God. And I would not that you should be made partakers with devils.
You really shouldn't be making light of these things.

Gabriel Jones
Gabriel Jones

My original post was completely on-topic. It's the overly defensive JP II fans who made off-topic posts attacking me. You really need to stop with your libel.

Charles Young
Charles Young

As an Orthodox I have no problem with accepting any of our teachings. I think I'm well informed about my faith, and nothing I've read ITT is new or unacceptable to me. I remember when I came back to the faith I worried about our righteous pagan ancestors, but since I know they are saved as well I fret no more and I shall meet mine in paradise. I have no problem with prohibiting euthanasia either, suffering is an opportunity to prove your faith, if anything I envy them.
kissing a book of fiction is a sin
Man, you LARPers crack me up.
Kissing the Quran is blasphemy, the most serious sin.

Adrian Fisher
Adrian Fisher

that vaginal sex is the only non-sinful sex act.
<I believe in the righteous omnipresent personal God creator of all things, the Virgin Birth, the resurrection, the second coming, eternal life
<but why can't I do anal/oral with my wife
This cracks me up.

Carson Johnson
Carson Johnson

I'll take your ad hominem as admission of defeat. Thanks for playing, God bless you.
ordodogs thinks kissing a book is an act of worship
I get it now. You people kiss icons all the time. This is why St. JPII kissing a book is such a stumbling block for you people. Wouldn't kissing an icon mean you are worshiping the saint in the icon? Wouldn't kissing the Pope mean you worship the Pope? Does kissing your wife mean you worship her?

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Brayden Rogers
Brayden Rogers

This got off topic quick. I suppose the hardest teaching is just simply that "you are not your own." If you accept this teaching, it is impossible to see things in terms of doing what you like.

Lucas Long
Lucas Long

What was the context of him kissing that book anyways? I agree with your sentiment, but kissing a book that calls for the death of our faith is confusing to say the least.

Brayden Parker
Brayden Parker

Something to do with him being invited to Iraq. He was presented with a book and kissed it as a sign of respect for his host. The Pope is a pontifex after all, which means bridge-builder in Latin. It's his job to build bridges with other peoples to lay a foundation of peace so others may cross the bridge and come to Christ. I don't like Mohammedanism as much as the next guy but bloodshed is not the solution to the Muslim problem. Therefore, making peace and doing things peacefully is not only the best bet we have to convert, it's what Christ would want.

Besides, if we started advocating violence agianst muslims
1) it would only embolden the non radicals and the radicals alike.
2) it would make us no better than the radicals we hate we despise.

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Austin Foster
Austin Foster

How so?
Heresy is separation from God, but committing grave sin and desecrating the sacrament of marriage is also separation from God.
Either way, do not mock such things. "He who is faithful in what is least is faithful also in much; and he who is unjust in what is least is unjust also in much." Even if sexual immorality did not commit you to Hell as much as heresy does, your mockery would still be unjustified.

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