"laestadian, apostolic, gay, lgbtq, ex-oalc, ex-llc, llc, oalc, bunner" LEARNING TO LIVE FREE: Randy Korpelians?

Monday, August 15, 2005

Randy Korpelians?

This is from an essay about author Mikael Niemi, whose "Popular Music from Vittula" was an international hit and is apparently the only novel available in English that features Laestadians. (You can read more by clicking on the link above).

"Lestadianism is known for emotion and charisma. Laestadius took this Sami tradition skillfully in the use of his religion. Niemi says emotion is more introverted and melancholic nowadays. The women do not jump and scream as before, but cry their sins copiously. Strong sexuality, which is connected with the Korpela movement, lives on only as a rumour of people with a strong need to look for love and ecstasy in sex."

Let me say right now that I have no idea what that last sentence means. Perhaps our Finnish friends can tell us?


  1. How come we can't post on the other posts here? We can only click on home at the bottom of the page.

  2. I turned off comments on earlier posts because I was getting email spam through them. You can comment here (for the time being). Sorry for the inconvenience.

  3. Dear Anonymous,

    Concerning the reading of the bible. It is very interesting to hear the OALC idea - "you are reading it with your own intellect". It is hard to believe that they have come from the same roots as the LLC, as bible reading/study is very much encouraged by the ministers and teachings of the LLC. Bible camps are held, the entire sunday school curriculum is based on the bible, the main resource at confirmation camps is the bible, sermons are based on a text read from the bible, there is NO reading from Laestadius' writings in the church service. As a matter of fact, very few people in the LLC even have copies of Laestadius' Postillas. The only ones I am aware of are those who have done indepth studies of the Laestadian movement. They have bought the Postillas from the OALC. It is very sad to think that the OALC has strayed so far from the teachings of the bible that they have placed men above God's Word. I believe that Laestadius would be mortified if he were alive today to see how the OALC has elevated him and his writings. Luther dealt with the same thing when people began to refer to those of the reformation as Lutherans. He was very much opposed to the use of his name to identify those in faith.

  4. Jesus didn't call his followers Christians, either.

  5. Free... Standing up for Jesus (who died for you) and 'Christ's people with love' is militant rhetoric? Wow! Jesus says, "I came not to bring peace, but to cause division". Luke 12:51 That does not sound like fuzzy, wuzzy love all the time. He came to do a job here and He did it. He stood up for His Father with righteous indignation when he made a cat of nine tails and swept the money changers out of His Father's Temple. He wants us to stand up for Him like that. What if ALL the Christ people in the world stood up for Him? What a different world we would have. Instead, most of us are silent. Turn the other cheek? That is not referring to a situation where someone comes up and punches a Christ person. Do you really think the Creator of the Universe would expect His children to be door mats? What that means is if you are sharing His Word and you go over their level and offend them and they reach out and slap you then turn the other cheek as you deserve it.
    Sounds OT?!! You do not study or go by the OT? It sounds like you are trying to invalidate it. Again, Jesus says, "Till heaven and earth pass, one jot or tittle shall in no wise pass from the law, till all be fulfilled." Matt 5:18 Where is most of the Law? In the OT. Jesus quoted the OT as did some of the apostles. I don't understand where you are coming from. Where did you get the idea that I was referring to any of your 'pour your heart out' posts? I was only referring to the post above me. You are overly sensitive and yes 'testy' for no reason. You took my post totally wrong. Fear is the vehicle that the OALC uses to control people. Let us NOT submit to it. That was my point. I can see that this is not a place for me to post. It is your blog and you run it the way you see fit.

  6. Please don't let me scare you off. There is a place for you here. We can afford to disagree with each other and we always learn from each other. (And that's not just the Percoset talking :)
    If your "get a backbone" message was meant for the just-previous poster (who is married to an OALCer), what did you mean to advise? Does getting a backbone mean she should (1) tell him he's going to **** (2) get a divorce (3) get a cat of nine tails? (But seriously!)

    Clarification: when I said Jesus doesn't ask us to stand up but to follow, I meant that taking a stand is just the beginning.

    My perspective is quite different from yours. I don't think must of us are "silent" -- most of us are immobile. It takes effort to visit the sick, the poor, the imprisoned. For me, it takes a huge effort to visit OALC relatives. But it's the right thing to do.

  7. curiosity_killed_the_cat8/16/2005 11:08:00 AM

    The Korpelian movement was an offshoot of the Laestadians in northern Sweden, and their leader apparently believed sexual activity would help people achieve greater bliss and connection to God. Their leader was Toivo Korpela, who was believed to have had relations with at least 30 women other than his wife. It was a small sect and limited to a small group. Apparently it caused a big sensation in the media at the time (1930's) They were also known for their wild and violent rejoicing.

    Apparently they were very early "love children."

    Isn't it interesting that with many cults, of which I consider Mormonism one, the leader eventually incorporates his having free and liberal access to multiple sexual relations with women. Think David Koresh and Jim Jones. Leadership positions seem to corrupt men with vices and it is usually money or sex, and sometimes both.

    My information was obtained by googling "Korpelian movement."

  8. I am wondering if their are any elders or preachers from the OALC out there that are looking at this page. If you are speak up, it would be neat to have dicussions with you. We have questions!!

  9. Anonymous--don't leave. We all have different ways of looking at things--plus Free is recovering from surgery and let's allow her to be a lttle testy. We all add our own perspectives here. I hope you don't drop out.

  10. Anonymous, please dont leave. We are christians here. We are also human and aint perfect, but you shouldnt leave this online community because one person offended you.

    In reply to studing the bible in the LLC, There are many people i know that have familiarized themselves with the Bible, beyond what is preached. This is encouraging and very different from what I hear goes on in the OALC. But i wouldnt go as far to say that reading the Bible is encouraged. Nobody in the LLC has encouraged me to do so.

    Wednesday nights there is Bible Class, but i feel that it is people searching throughout the bible for verses to prove a point. It isnt filling for me. But i think that Bible Class is deffinitly a step in the right direction.

    The sunday-school material is based on the "By faith" book and "Luther's Small Catechism" When I went through Sunday School, we didnt study the bible as much as we should have, but we did memorize a portion of a verse(not a whole verse, but a part of one), then we memorized a half page of writing on how a man had interpreted those couple words. It wasn't filling.

    Whenever I go to Church at the LLC, there are usally two Bibles in the sancuary. One is on the pulpit and the other is mine. I went to summer services this year and i brought my Bible to every sermon. There were so many people who thought this was very odd and asked me why i was doing it. If people go to church to hear the Word of God, it just makes sence to bring their own copy of The Word of God. Whenever i visit a different church and i see that everybody has brought a Bible, it sure brings a big smile to my face. I think that these are people who truely want to know the Word of God.

    In response to the elders reading this site.-

    I have no dought that this site is being monitered, but i don't think an elder would post. They have no reason to do so.

  11. Many Trails Home8/17/2005 12:44:00 PM

    The "skirmish" between Free2bme and "Anonymous with Backbone" (AWB) was fascinating and here's my 2 cents: When I first read Free's response to AWB, I was startled: so unlike her, sarcastic even and "not very nice." However, I have to say this: Free is mostly right. AWB is in OT mindset of "God's People" and "power over enemies." But the "militant rhetoric" of the OT has also infiltrated the interpretation of the NT with "Onward Christian Soldiers" and "Stand Up, Stand Up for Jesus ye soldiers. . ." etc. To many, this militant approach to loving God and Jesus seems right; not to me.

    "Love your enemies" and "power over enemies" are irreconcilable concepts. If all "Christ's people stood up for him" against the (perceived) enemies, we'd have a changed world, all right; we'd probably have WWIII with the Muslims on the other side of the field.

    When Jesus said, "Love your neighbor," Love your enemies," and "Turn the other cheek," I THINK HE MEANT IT. We dig up the one or two passages in the NT that support a militant posture and ignore (or at least de-emphasize) the rest.

    Frankly, AWB, your interpretation of "Turn the other cheek" boggles me and sounds (to borrow from Free) like a Laestadianism. And that you are so sure you know how God "feels" (if God "feels" at all, having, we presume, never been human) also boggles.

    But you are right in this, AWB: we are his Beloved Children, ALL of us (including the "enemies," OALCers, Muslims, and yes, even the moneychangers).

    May we be strong, loving, wise, and fearless. May we be peacemakers. May we go directly to God for guidance and let him be the judge.
    Blessings to you all. MTH

  12. Hey ex_LLC,

    Today you say, "But i wouldnt go as far to say that reading the Bible is encouraged. Nobody in the LLC has encouraged me to do so. "

    Back in June you said, "I think I will learn a lot about my church just from listening to these sermons(something ive never done before)."

    Do listen.

    We have been encouraged frequently to read and study the bible. Also, more recently I have heard numerous times from the preachers, how the Ecuadorian believers bring their bibles to services. They have encouraged us to do the same. I have noticed an increase in bibles being brought to services. Have patience, it is hard to break old habits.

    You might also check with the current Sunday School teachers concerning the LLC Sunday School curriculum, as it has been totally revised.

  13. I was looking through “Dr. Martin Luther's small Catechism and K.G. Leinberg's Bible History” that i studied from in Sunday school. I found something interesting.

    When it talks about the Lord's prayer, the fifth petition reads. “And forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us.” ----“what is meant by this? --- We pray in this petition that our heavenly Father would not regard our sins, nor on account of them, deny our prayer: for we are not worthy of anything for which we pray, neither have we deserved it: but that He would grant us all things through grace: for we sin every day, and deserve nothing but punishment. We will therefore, on our part, heartily forgive and readily do good to those who sin against us.”

    In fact, whenever we have recited the Lord's Prayer in the LLC, everyone has said “And forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us.”

    But In Matthew chapter 6 (KJV), where Jesus instructs his disciples how to pray. It instead reads “And forgive us our depts, as we forgive our deptors.”

    Why would a church who only accepts the King James Version to be accurate, change this verse? Perhaps if people used the word “dept”, they might think that Jesus was instructing his disciples to pray to the Heavenly Father to forgive their dept of sin.

    The Living Bible translation reads “Forgive us our sins, just as we have forgiven those who have sinned against us.”

  14. To above anonymous post- back in June i said, "I think I will learn a lot about my church just from listening to these sermons(something ive never done before)."

    I was talking about my upcoming trip to summer services. What i meant is that i have never actually sat down and listened to the sermons during summer/winter services. During big services i would always runaway and play with my friends or go girl-hunting. It was like a giant recess to me. A lot of the kids there do the same thing.

    But i have gone to LLC services every Sunday for years. And i have listened to the sermons, and i think i am quite knowledgeable with the doctrine.

    There are positive changes that are going on in the LLC. In 100 years from now, I think that the LLC will be very different. And some of the things i have been complaining about wont be an issue any more.

    I realize that it is hard to break old habits. These old habits don't bug me all that much. The thing that bugs me is that they say that they teach “we are the only true church.” This teaching is something i can never agree with, and i think it is dangerous. I have been told that i am not a believer simply because i don't agree with it. Within the next hundred years, i think this teaching will change also, at least with a portion of the LLCers.

    If you are satisfied with the LLC and want to help it grow, more power to you. I consider my LLC friends and family brothers and sisters in Christ. I love them and i am not angry or bitter towards LLCrs. It just saddens me that they don't consider me the same way. I think God will eventually lead me into a church that isn't so exclusive. There are better churches out there.
    God's Peace.

  15. Dear exLLC, thank you for posting. Your are wise beyond your years. The exclusivity thing SHOULD bug you, because it informs one's smallest moral decisions, whether one realizes it or not. The world became a different place when I acknowledged that I didn't know who was "saved" and more importantly, that I didn't need to know. We are called to love everyone, we are free to love everyone, we are free to be loved.

    It's not a quibble. It's major.

    About the Lord's Prayer, how can Laestadians explain the "direct appeal" for forgiveness in the Lord's prayer? No intercession. No keys.

  16. I recently switched churches, and in the same connection I also had to get used to a new way of reciting the Lord's prayer. Laestadians (and all Lutherans) in Finland use the form "anna meille anteeksi meidän syntimme niin kuin mekin annamme anteeksi niille, jotka ovat meitä vastaan rikkoneet" (=forgive us our sins as also we forgive those who have done wrong against us), while the Orthodox pray "anna meille anteeksi velkamme, niin kuin mekin annamme anteeksi velallisillemme" (=forgive us our debt, as also we forgive our debtors). I still keep saying it "wrong" sometimes, but I'm learning... But I never really thought about the possible difference between them before exLLC's post above. Is there any? I didn't quite get the idea in exLLC's post, but it seemed like (s)he thought there really was a big difference.


    Free2beme said: "The world became a different place when I acknowledged that I didn't know who was "saved" and more importantly, that I didn't need to know". I've had the same experience. It's been a great relief for me that I don't have to classify other people's condition of soul any more as I used to do some time ago. It was exhausting to classify every single human being you met depending on how you deemed his/her condition of soul to be like, "does (s)he have the right faith or not?". I don't think we humans are supposed to make that kind of judgments because only God knows the heart, and we can be deceived by what we see.

  17. Dear Free2beme,

    How do you explain the conversion of Saul? He was basically begging of Jesus what he must do. Why was he not forgiven there on the road to Damacus? Why was he sent to a believing intermediary, Ananias?

    Acts 9:3 And as he journeyed, he came near Damascus: and suddenly there shined round about him a light from heaven:
    Acts 9:4 And he fell to the earth, and heard a voice saying unto him, Saul, Saul, why persecutest thou me?
    Acts 9:5 And he said, Who art thou, Lord? And the Lord said, I am Jesus whom thou persecutest: it is hard for thee to kick against the pricks.
    Acts 9:6 And he trembling and astonished said, Lord, what wilt thou have me to do? And the Lord said unto him, Arise, and go into the city, and it shall be told thee what thou must do.
    Acts 9:7 And the men which journeyed with him stood speechless, hearing a voice, but seeing no man.
    Acts 9:8 And Saul arose from the earth; and when his eyes were opened, he saw no man: but they led him by the hand, and brought him into Damascus.
    Acts 9:9 And he was three days without sight, and neither did eat nor drink.
    Acts 9:10 And there was a certain disciple at Damascus, named Ananias; and to him said the Lord in a vision, Ananias. And he said, Behold, I am here, Lord.
    Acts 9:11 And the Lord said unto him, Arise, and go into the street which is called Straight, and inquire in the house of Judas for one called Saul, of Tarsus: for, behold, he prayeth,
    Acts 9:12 And hath seen in a vision a man named Ananias coming in, and putting his hand on him, that he might receive his sight.
    Acts 9:13 Then Ananias answered, Lord, I have heard by many of this man, how much evil he hath done to thy saints at Jerusalem:
    Acts 9:14 And here he hath authority from the chief priests to bind all that call on thy name.
    Acts 9:15 But the Lord said unto him, Go thy way: for he is a chosen vessel unto me, to bear my name before the Gentiles, and kings, and the children of Israel:
    Acts 9:16 For I will shew him how great things he must suffer for my name’s sake.
    Acts 9:17 And Ananias went his way, and entered into the house; and putting his hands on him said, Brother Saul, the Lord, even Jesus, that appeared unto thee in the way as thou camest, hath sent me, that thou mightest receive thy sight, and be filled with the Holy Ghost.
    Acts 9:18 And immediately there fell from his eyes as it had been scales: and he received sight forthwith, and arose, and was baptized.

    As far as the wording of the Lord's Prayer.
    The concern over debts, trepasses or sins is immaterial, the contents of the heart of the supplicant is what matters. And the "direct appeal" does not negate the fact that we have been given, by Christ himself, the authority to forgive sins. (John 20:21 Then said Jesus to them again, Peace be unto you: as my Father hath sent me, even so send I you. John 20:22 And when he had said this, he breathed on them, and saith unto them, Receive ye the Holy Ghost: John 20:23 Whose soever sins ye remit, they are remitted unto them; and whose soever sins ye retain, they are retained.) This was the authority that Ananias used in the case of Saul/Paul. Not his forgiveness, but proclaiming the forgiveness of God through faith in the works of Christ.

    The prayer of a believer is that when we confess our sins/sinfulness God would truely forgive us. I think Luther explained this petition very well in light of the scriptures.

    James 5:16 Confess your faults one to another, and pray one for another, that ye may be healed. The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much.
    1John 1:9 If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.

    Why is it that the ecumenism of so many of the posters to this blog is extended to everyone, but the Laestadians? That smacks of exclusivity and therefore, hypocrisy.

    Once again, if you are satisfied with your decision, move forward!

  18. You know, for a religion like Laestadianism that is so obsessed with biblical literalism, that's a downright creative reading of Saul's Damascus road experience and subsequent healing by Ananias.

    I don't think anyone denies that one can confess ones sins to another person and be forgiven. Or you can confess them to God. Or you can confess them to a priest. What is at issue is the Laestadian notion that only the Laestadians have "the forgiveness of sins."

    "if you are satisfied with your decision, move forward," just sounds like an attempt to silence dissenting and critical voices. Lots of us are satisfied with our decision, but still choose to speak out about what we perceive as an extreme and flawed religious system.

    As for our reasons, I'll leave you with Luke 19:40

  19. Dear Anonymous,
    How do those people who use Paul's conversion (a most awesome display of how God can reveal Himself to whomever He chooses) as a tortured example of needing other people explain the following verse, written by Paul in Galatians 1:11-12?
    I want you to know, brothers, that the gospel I preached is not something that man made up. I did not receive it from any man, nor was I taught it; rather, I received it by revelation from Jesus Christ.

    Also, where is it written that Ananias testified Paul's sins forgiven? Perhaps he simply said, as it is written, "Brother Saul, receive your sight."

    A beautiful story. Please don't add to or subtract from it.
    Something magnificent happened to convert Paul from someone zealous for the law and the deaths of believers to a poster boy for grace.

  20. Here's one more: Galatians 1:15-17

    But when God, who set me apart from birth and called me by his grace, was pleased to reveal his Son in me so that I might preach him among the Gentiles, I did not consult any man, nor did I go up to Jerusalem to see those who were apostles before I was, but I went immediately into Arabia and later returned to Damascus.

  21. Dear Anonymous, thank for reading this blog and for having the courage to post. Whatever indignation you are feeling right now -- toward me, toward this blog and its "hypocrisy" -- can be instructive. I hope you continue to explore.

    Now about Paul. It seems that you assume that all conversions must be like Paul's? What about the thief on the cross?

    About the keys. I'm not a scholar. So I'll quote one:
    "To loose and to bind were very common Jewish phrases. They were used especially of the decisions of the great teachers and the great Rabbis. Their regular sense, which any Jew would recognize, was to allow and to forbid; to bind something was to declare it forbidden; ‘to loose’ something was to declare it allowed. These were the regular phrases for taking decisions in regard to the law. That is in fact the only thing these phrases in such a context would mean.”

    "We can conclude, therefore, that in giving Peter “the keys,” Jesus is bestowing upon him the authority necessary to declare to men what is right and what is wrong on the subject of the kingdom of heaven. This does not mean that Jesus, the Head of the Church, is handing over His own distinctive, divine functions to a mere human being. On the contrary, He is giving Peter the authority to declare only what by divine revelation he has been given to know. It is in this sense, and no other, that Peter will exercise his authority, as will also his fellow apostles. In the book of Acts we see Peter doing precisely this, first in relation to the Jews at Pentecost (Acts 2:37,38) and later in relation to the Gentiles (Acts 10; 11; 15:14) admitting both groups into the same spiritual fellowship, into the Church of Christ."

    About forgiveness, I have nothing to add to Tomte's pithy response.

    About tolerance. If you find criticism herein of Laestadianism "exclusive," what is your preferred alternative for us who disagree? Silence? That is a recipe for tyranny. Any religion, government or marriage that does not make room for debate is one to be avoided.

    About moving forward. This blog is a gift to me and many others, who have had no way of conversing with others who "have been there." I feel called to continue it, and perhaps you feel called to criticize it. Please do.

    God's peace . . . and truth . . . be with you.

  22. Anonymous, i agree with you on your complaint on hypocrisy . There are bloggers here who consider members of a certain LLL church not-Christians. Most do-not have this mindset, but there are a few. Leaving an exclusive church, then saying that church doesn't have any believers does seem hypocritical, but i understand where they're coming from. I once had the same mindset, but i realized that LLCers where serving and worshiping the same God I was. Who was I to Judge these people? The church a person attends does not matter, be it a LLL church or otherwise.

    Hey, you left out the first two verses of Acts 3. I'll fill everyone in.

    Acts:9.1 Meanwhile, Saul was still breathing out murderous threats against the Lord's disciples. He went to the high priest.
    Acts 9.2 and asked him for letters to the synagogues in Damascus, so that if he found any there who belonged to the Way, whether men or women, he might take them as prisoner to Jerusalem.

    Saul was on a crusade against the Christians, and Jesus. On his journey, Jesus appeared to him, made him blind, and instructed him to go seek Ananias. Saul obeyed, and was converted in the presence of Ananias. This is not proof that asking a person for your sins forgiven is the only way you are saved.

    Suppose that Saul, in the presence of Jesus, said, -Jesus, i have done evil, i will cease my evil ways and i will follow you. Please forgive me of my sins.- Do you really think Jesus would say no? The reason Saul didn't receive the forgiveness of sins on the rodeside is because he didn't ask, and he didn't want to believe. In fact, he was persicuting Jesus.(verse 5)

    I want to share some of my writing. I will post it in the above thread marked “fences.” It goes over the authority to forgive sins, how one is saved, and my opinion of John chapter 20.

    God's Peace

  23. "It seems that you assume that all conversions must be like Paul's? What about the thief on the cross?"

    That thief-case was not similar with Saul-case because in the thief-case there was God in visible form (Jesus Christ) involved. He has sure the authority to forgive sins.

    Jesus has not been visible on the earth in about 1970 years, thats why we have been given, by Christ himself, the authority to forgive sins.


  24. To the anon right above me, are you seriously saying that Jesus could only forgive sins before he died, and that the Risen Christ that appeared to S/Paul on the Damascus road had lost this ability?

  25. Tomte...

    9:17 And Ananias went his way, and entered into the house; and putting his hands on him said, Brother Saul, the Lord, even Jesus, that appeared unto thee in the way as thou camest, hath sent me, that thou mightest receive thy sight, and be filled with the Holy Ghost.
    9:18 And immediately there fell from his eyes as it had been scales: and he received sight forthwith, and arose, and was baptized.

    Tomte; Why did it happen this way soon after happenings at Damascus road ?


  26. So that 2000 years later some people could take it entirely out of context with the rest of the Bible and use it to prove there are no other believers on the planet.

  27. PS-
    Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever.
    Hebrews 13:8

  28. exoal...

    Why do You think thats out of context? And who said there are no other believers on the planet?

  29. Parsteri, you are making what is called an "argument from silence."

    It doesn't say in the text why it happened the way it did. I can think of a couple of reasons, which you may or may not find compelling.

    My point here is that this isn't a proof text to prove your point. While the silence in the text allows for your view, it does not support your view.

  30. My opinions on why the story goes the way it does:

    1) Saul is sent to Ananias so that his transformation from Saul to Paul, from persecutor to Christian, happens within community, as a lesson to us, the reader. One might say the text teaches us that Christian formation happens in community.
    2) Tying in with 1), the newly minted Christian Paul is going to work in harmony with other Christians. Despite his vision which he had alone, he is not going to start his own version of the faith all by himself.

    Based on the tension we see between Peter and Paul in other texts, maybe this was an issue for Paul more so than others. Maybe he liked to be too independent so it was important that Paul's early discipleship be under the guidance of others.

  31. Seems to me that Saul already believed when Ananias came to him. I agree with Tomte's post. Having Ananias come to him didn't change whether or not Saul now believed. In otherwords had he died before Ananias came to him he still believed. Please correct me if I'm wrong.
    God's Peace to all...

  32. I agree. Evidence of that is his use of the term "Lord". Saul said, "Lord, what should I do?" (paraphrased). If he didn't believe, he wouldn't have called Jesus Lord.

    If something that is not in the text (as Tomte pointed out) is used to create a doctrine that cannot be supported in any way through the rest of the Bible, it is out of context.
    I was a little tired and crabby with my comment last night, but the reason I believe this text is misquoted to exclude all others on the planet is that it is. Supposedly this story supports that others must find you to be saved. That pretty much excludes the possibility of other believers, doesn't it?

  33. Dear exoalc!

    This is a man-made doctrine: "Evidence of that is his use of the term "Lord". If he didn't believe, he wouldn't have called Jesus Lord."

    Can this doctrine be supported through the rest of the Bible, or it is out of context, as You wrote?

    The rest of the Bible says for example:

    "Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven."

    Sorry, but You are not credible.

    A question to think about: What is the "will of my Father which is in heaven"


  34. God help you Parsteri! You are struggling to find Biblical support for judging others. Surely the answer is in your heart. Leave it to God, lest you make a false idol of this doctrine.

  35. You're right, Parsteri.
    That verse you referred to is a direct reference to Paul, as seen in the above circumstance.

    You can see from the rest of the Bible that it wasn't a true repentance, as defined by the OALC.
    For those who do not recognize sarcasm, that was it.

    Some people read the Bible to define God, and some people define God first and then find passages to say He is who they already believe.

    I'm glad you are not in charge of my credibility. I'm not perfect, neither are my interpretations of Scripture always perfect.

    The verse you quoted refers to those who say they believe but do not help the poor, feed the hungry, and clothe the naked. Read the context.

  36. Also, your new screen name Parsteri doesn't do anything that b.r. finjemmy or vanha aatemi couldn't do.
    Why do you keep changing?

  37. My orthodox study Bible says the following: ”Remarkably, Ananias calls this former persecutor of Christians ’brother’, a sign that Saul had already believed in Christ. To enter into the fullness of Christ, he is baptized and filled with the Holy Spirit.”

    In my opinion, the fact that Ananias called him brother and the fact mentioned by exoalc above, that he called Jesus his Lord, indicate that he really believed. But he still had to be brought to communion with that faith through the baptism. Someone might want to speculate on what would have happened if he had died before reaching Damascus, but in my opinion, we don’t have any clear answer to that. The Bible says that the ones who believe and are baptized will be saved, but the ones who don’t believe will not be saved, the Bible is silent about those who have believed but die before they are baptized.

    I agree with exoalc also about the verse in which it says that not everyone who says Lord is saved, but the ones who do the will of the heavenly Father. The Bible also talks about “faith that works through love” and it also says that “faith without works is dead”. If the faith is living, it becomes visible as love. God is love and if we are united with Christ, then his love will be visible in us.

    By the way, I read yesterday about another event that reminded me of Saul on the road to Damascus. Also in this story there is a man who is strongly against the Christianity, but then he makes a sudden and total turnaround. And also in this story he first says that he believes and then he is formally united with the faith through baptism. I might as well post the story in case someone is interested in stories from the very first time of the Christianity.

    ”Another version of the same story (or it may be a different story) is found in the Acts of the Council of Nicaea. One philosopher argued long and hard with the Fathers of the Council, trying to prove logically that the Son cannot be consubstantial with the Father. Exhausted by long debates and eager to leave, the Fathers were suddenly confronted by a simple elderly shepherd (identified as St Spyridon), who announced that he was prepared to argue with the philosopher and disprove his arguments. Turning to the philosopher, the shepherd looked at him severely, and said: ‘Listen, O philosopher, God is one, the Creator of heaven and earth, Who has created all things through the power of the Son and the operation of the Holy Spirit. This Son of God became incarnate, lived among people, died for us and rose again. Do not labour in vain to seek evidence for that which is comprehended by faith alone, but answer me: do you believe in the Son of God?’ Struck by these words, the philosopher could only say, ‘I do’. The shepherd said: ‘If you believe, then let us go to the church and there I will bring you into communion with this true faith’. The philosopher immediately stood up and went with the shepherd. On his way out, he said to those present: ‘When people tried to convince me with words, I countered words with words; but when a divine power came forth from the mouth of this old man, then words were no match for this power, as man cannot contend against God’.” From ‘The Mystery of Faith’ by bishop Hilarion Alfeev http://orthodoxeurope.org/page/10/1.aspx

  38. I was wrong! You are rigt, You do have the one and only original rigt understanding of the Bible.

    Are you satisfied now?