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Definition of Evangelical

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  • Cow Poke
    replied
    Originally posted by One Bad Pig View Post
    Sort of. The introduction seems to have rapidly become rather more cautions than your synopsis implies, and outsiders were only invited to witness part of worship until they'd made a commitment to Christ. Once Christianity was proscribed, people could not be as freely open about it.
    No disagreement whatsoever -- I could have elaborated, but given the persecution at the time, I thought that was an 'obvious'.

    Leave a comment:


  • One Bad Pig
    replied
    Originally posted by Cow Poke View Post
    I have seen that kind of summary expressed, along with the notion that "fellowship meetings" (Church services) were as much about introducing new Christians to their new family as it was about worship. It was assumed that you would be winning people to Jesus during the week, then bringing them to the Church Service for them to meet their new family.
    Sort of. The introduction seems to have rapidly become rather more cautions than your synopsis implies, and outsiders were only invited to witness part of worship until they'd made a commitment to Christ. Once Christianity was proscribed, people could not be as freely open about it.

    Leave a comment:


  • Cow Poke
    replied
    Originally posted by Adrift View Post
    You should check out Michael Green's Evangelism in the Early Church. In surveying the early church up until the third century, he demonstrates that the Great Commission did, in fact, apply to all believers. As he writes in the epilogue,

    Source: Evangelism in the Early Church Revised ed. Edition by Michael Green, Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing, 2004, pp. 380-81

    One of the most striking features in evangelism in the early days was the people who engaged in it. Communicating the faith was not regarded as the preserve of the very zealous or of the officially designated evangelist. Evangelism was the prerogative and the duty of every church member. We have seen apostles and wandering prophets, nobles and paupers, intellectuals and fishermen all taking part enthusiastically in this the primary task committed by Christ to his Church. The ordinary people of the Church saw it as their job: Christianity was supremely a lay movement, spread by informal missionaries. The clergy of the Church saw it as their responsibility, too: bishops and presbyters, together with doctors of the Church like Origen and Clement, and philosophers like Justin and Tatian, saw the propagation of the gospel as their prime concern. They seem not to have allowed the tasks of teaching, caring, and administering to make them too busy to bring individuals and groups from unbelief to faith. The spontaneous outreach of the total Christian community gave immense impetus to the movement from the very outset.

    What is more, this infectious enthusiasm on the part of such diverse people of differing ages, backgrounds, sex and cultures was backed up by the quality of their lives. Their love, their joy, their changed habits and progressively transformed characters gave great weight to what they had to say. Their community life, though far from perfect, as Christian writers were constantly complaining, was nevertheless sufficiently different and impressive to attract notice, to invite curiosity and to inspire discipleship in an age that was as pleasure-conscious, as materialistic and as devoid of serious purpose as our own. Paganism saw in early Christianity a quality of living, and supremely of dying, which could not be found elsewhere.

    © Copyright Original Source

    I have seen that kind of summary expressed, along with the notion that "fellowship meetings" (Church services) were as much about introducing new Christians to their new family as it was about worship. It was assumed that you would be winning people to Jesus during the week, then bringing them to the Church Service for them to meet their new family.

    Today, it seems that in many "evangelical" churches, the extent of "Evangelism" is that we just "have Church" and if a lost person happens to stumble in, maybe they'll get saved.

    Leave a comment:


  • Adrift
    replied
    You should check out Michael Green's Evangelism in the Early Church. In surveying the early church up until the third century, he demonstrates that the Great Commission did, in fact, apply to all believers. As he writes in the epilogue,

    Source: Evangelism in the Early Church Revised ed. Edition by Michael Green, Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing, 2004, pp. 380-81

    One of the most striking features in evangelism in the early days was the people who engaged in it. Communicating the faith was not regarded as the preserve of the very zealous or of the officially designated evangelist. Evangelism was the prerogative and the duty of every church member. We have seen apostles and wandering prophets, nobles and paupers, intellectuals and fishermen all taking part enthusiastically in this the primary task committed by Christ to his Church. The ordinary people of the Church saw it as their job: Christianity was supremely a lay movement, spread by informal missionaries. The clergy of the Church saw it as their responsibility, too: bishops and presbyters, together with doctors of the Church like Origen and Clement, and philosophers like Justin and Tatian, saw the propagation of the gospel as their prime concern. They seem not to have allowed the tasks of teaching, caring, and administering to make them too busy to bring individuals and groups from unbelief to faith. The spontaneous outreach of the total Christian community gave immense impetus to the movement from the very outset.

    What is more, this infectious enthusiasm on the part of such diverse people of differing ages, backgrounds, sex and cultures was backed up by the quality of their lives. Their love, their joy, their changed habits and progressively transformed characters gave great weight to what they had to say. Their community life, though far from perfect, as Christian writers were constantly complaining, was nevertheless sufficiently different and impressive to attract notice, to invite curiosity and to inspire discipleship in an age that was as pleasure-conscious, as materialistic and as devoid of serious purpose as our own. Paganism saw in early Christianity a quality of living, and supremely of dying, which could not be found elsewhere.

    © Copyright Original Source

    Leave a comment:


  • demi-conservative
    replied
    Originally posted by KingsGambit View Post
    I would heavily suspect that this view was not novel among them, but anything outside of Protestantism is outside of his purview there so it can't be proven.
    It should be safe to say that the official teaching of the Catholic and Orthodox have never included the idea that the Great Commission applies to all believers.

    I slightly misremembered what McGrath argued. He argued that the early Reformers prior to the 1830s held this sort of limited view of the Great Commission. (Pages 175-177 of Christianity's Dangerous Idea).
    Right, it's a relatively recent reading of that passage. That reading creates a strong moral obligation for all believers to prioritise evangelising, which leads to practices such as encouraging all lay believers to 'share their faith' and training them to do so. This is utterly characteristic of Evangelicalism, and not at all characteristic of non-Evangelical orthodox Christianity. This is what makes Evangelicalism Evangelicalism, and it all stems from that reading of the Great Commission.

    And that reading is wrong. The text doesn't support that interpretation at all. Evangelicals themselves tend to treat the reading as axiomatic, and they don't follow it consistently anyway, as they don't allow just any believer to baptise. Neither do they consider it a dereliction of duty if a believer never baptises anyone during his life.
    Last edited by demi-conservative; 10-02-2019, 04:28 AM.

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  • KingsGambit
    replied
    I slightly misremembered what McGrath argued. He argued that the early Reformers prior to the 1830s held this sort of limited view of the Great Commission. (Pages 175-177 of Christianity's Dangerous Idea). I would heavily suspect that this view was not novel among them, but anything outside of Protestantism is outside of his purview there so it can't be proven.

    Leave a comment:


  • mikewhitney
    replied
    Originally posted by Esther View Post
    I see the Creeds as being specific statements of faith, containing salvation criteria and uniting a worldwide body of believers from different denominations. Once the hurdle of the "catholic church" is understood to be in the sense of the universal church. Protestants who are not aware of this sense of the catholic church may reject outright just because of the word "catholic".

    The Creeds could also be used to separate mainstream Christians from Cults and Unorthodox religions such as the JW's perhaps. The SDA's I think will largely be in agreement with the salvation issues contained in the Creeds.

    On a lighter note, imagine a new age "believer" telling you all the vague things they believe in and in return you recite either Creed to tell them what you believe in! (That will larn them :-) )
    Yes. Your points are major factors why I would promote the creeds. (I am including creeds and confessions together -- probably more for use only as confessions -- not as authorities.)
    I would note that the creeds can be used as a concise teaching of central doctrines. The creeds also represent strongly supported understanding of doctrine. But these creeds are not the authority for what we understand. ( I skimmed through a discussion on the creeds and confessions. See this link for further info: https://ethicsdaily.com/creedalism-v...are-cms-24599/

    Leave a comment:


  • NorrinRadd
    replied
    Originally posted by mikewhitney View Post
    Is there any passage that says who does the baptizing -- as applicable today?

    I do recommend people get baptized within a church group's pastor, but this is in the absence of any specific instruction as to who should do the baptizing.
    There is no such passage, nor is there any passage delineating who may administer Communion -- or officiate at weddings or funerals, for that matter.

    Leave a comment:


  • JonathanL
    replied
    Originally posted by Rushing Jaws View Post
    Didn't Luther claim to be Evangelical ? I wish the word, however spelt, were not so slippery.
    Well, he probably didn't mean the same thing that Evangelical usually means when it's used in the US today.

    Leave a comment:


  • Cow Poke
    replied
    Originally posted by Esther View Post
    I see the Creeds as being specific statements of faith, containing salvation criteria and uniting a worldwide body of believers from different denominations. Once the hurdle of the "catholic church" is understood to be in the sense of the universal church. Protestants who are not aware of this sense of the catholic church may reject outright just because of the word "catholic".

    The Creeds could also be used to separate mainstream Christians from Cults and Unorthodox religions such as the JW's perhaps. The SDA's I think will largely be in agreement with the salvation issues contained in the Creeds.

    On a lighter note, imagine a new age "believer" telling you all the vague things they believe in and in return you recite either Creed to tell them what you believe in! (That will larn them :-) )
    On a lighter note (again) the visiting preacher arrived late to fill in for the vacationing pastor, and, knowing he would be leading the Apostle's Creed, wanted to make sure he used the correct version. He leaned over and whispered to a deacon "do we descend into hell or not". The deacon replied "far more than we'd like, Pastor, far more than we'd like".

    Leave a comment:


  • Esther
    replied
    Originally posted by mikewhitney View Post
    Oops. I meant to say that "such evangelicals may not be consciously..."

    I may write papers where I need a definition of 'Christian.' This term can have many interpretations. I would tend to use the term 'confessional Christian' or creedal-agreeable Christian. The minimal creed would be the Apostles' Creed -- including those church groups and people who would concur, at minimal, with the apparent meaning of the Apostles' Creed. (Or that people in these church groups would reject use of the term 'Christian' for people that do not basically accept the Apostle's Creed.)

    Note that the discussion on Evangelicals was more of a test case rather than being the main concern here. But I did like how the discussion went.
    I see the Creeds as being specific statements of faith, containing salvation criteria and uniting a worldwide body of believers from different denominations. Once the hurdle of the "catholic church" is understood to be in the sense of the universal church. Protestants who are not aware of this sense of the catholic church may reject outright just because of the word "catholic".

    The Creeds could also be used to separate mainstream Christians from Cults and Unorthodox religions such as the JW's perhaps. The SDA's I think will largely be in agreement with the salvation issues contained in the Creeds.

    On a lighter note, imagine a new age "believer" telling you all the vague things they believe in and in return you recite either Creed to tell them what you believe in! (That will larn them :-) )
    Last edited by Esther; 10-01-2019, 05:57 PM.

    Leave a comment:


  • Cow Poke
    replied
    Originally posted by rogue06 View Post
    Worried about what you can't remember?
    Did anything happen between the 50's and 70's?

    Leave a comment:


  • rogue06
    replied
    Originally posted by mikewhitney View Post
    Must I say aloud that the 70s era discussions are prohibited?
    Worried about what you can't remember?

    Leave a comment:


  • One Bad Pig
    replied
    Originally posted by Cow Poke View Post
    Interesting. Thanks.

    So, in the course of attending, and being instructed, is there any emphasis on seeking the lost and bringing them to Christ?
    I'm not sure I can answer that; I've only attended a couple Greek services, and I think only one of those was on a Sunday. I think it would depend on the individual priest.

    Leave a comment:


  • mikewhitney
    replied
    Must I say aloud that the 70s era discussions are prohibited?

    Leave a comment:

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