Orthodoxia: Does it matter what we believe?

From Evangeliona weekly Bulletin of Orthodox Christian faith that is made available to the Churches of the Archbishopric of Good Hope, the issue of 27 May 2012:

Does It Matter What We Believe?

We live in an era that tends to downplay the importance of religious dogma; people often speak about preferring “spirituality” to religion and insisting on the need for right belief is somehow seen as intolerant or judgmental of others. For the Orthodox Church, such attitudes pose a particular challenge. While we need to be tolerant of the beliefs of others, we cannot betray the truth of the Gospel to which our Fathers in the faith devoted their lives.

However, it is important to understand that such loyalty to the teaching of the Church is not simply a matter of convention, or of blind obedience. The beliefs that the Councils of the Church have defined are not arbitrary, but are crucially important for our salvation. How we speak about God, and about God’s reaching out to us in the person of Jesus Christ, is important because we ourselves are in relation to God. We are created in His image and although this image has been marred by sin, Jesus Christ came to us in order to renew the image of God in us.

The early Fathers sought to clarify the relationship between Christ’s humanity and His divinity, for both of these were necessary if He was to refashion us according to what God intended us to be. If Christ was not fully God, He would be powerless to save us. But if He was not also fully human, He would also be powerless to save us, for He came to heal our nature from within.

“God became human so that we might become God, ” is how several of the Fathers expressed the work of our salvation. This glorious exchange occurred in the person of Jesus Christ, opening the way to our salvation. The unity of divinity and humanity in His Person is the key to our salvation, and it is for this reason that the Church insists on the importance of right belief.

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3 thoughts on “Orthodoxia: Does it matter what we believe?

  1. kksorrell says:

    I added your site to my “Worth a Look” page. I would love to see an “About Me” blurb on here! :)

    • Nepsis says:

      Thank you and I have returned the favor. As I said, I admire your courage when posting. As far as ‘about me’, there is an ‘about’ page on the blog, but not that much ‘me.’ Not sure when it entered my prayer life, but I always say, “less of me, more of Thee.”

  2. Nepsis says:

    Quoted in The Giver of Life (see my GoodReads): “Those who are idle in the pursuit of righteousness count theological terminology as secondary.” St. Basil

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