Comment: Thank you for your response, chosen lady!

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In post: Agape' Forum

Thank you for your response, chosen lady!

Note: This post has, toward the bottom, been significantly edited.

Today (May 05), the 300 million Orthodox Christians are celebrating Pascha (Easter). If you like, sister bear, please join me in posting a Paschal greeting to our Orthodox brothers and sisters.

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"Christ is in the Believer, so I find it different to my experience to acknowledge Christ represented by a cross... All day the Believer communes with Christ. He is the forefront of every thought, decision, and action. But I think it nice that you take those extra special moments to commune with Him. I just kinda talk to God throughout the day."

In this regard, you are further along than I am in your Christian walk. I am not yet at the place where Christ is at "the forefront of every thought, decision, and action." Instead, I tend to forget to include Christ, and the cross brings him back into my mind.

Concerning the "Jewish Marriage" Bible study that you linked to, I read the entire "chapter" (there were 6 lessons, if I recall correctly). The focus is exclusively on who the marriage participants are (Christ and the Church), rather than on why Christ wants to be married to us, or on what the marriage will be like; in that respect, the study, while interesting, was somewhat disappointing to me.

I tried to clarify for you my understanding of what does, and doesn't, happen to the bread and wine during Holy Communion; Did it help at all? Prior to my clarification, were you thinking that I held to "position 1" (transformation of the elements themselves)? Now that you know that I do not so hold, does that bring us closer to agreement -- in other words, is "position 2" an acceptable middle ground?

"I don't want to read about divine sexuality. Is that OK? I think of God's love as agape love, not eros love."

Of course, dear sister. Please forgive me for pushing something on you that you are not comfortable with. If I may ask some sincere, non-argumentative questions about your understanding, as I am genuinely curious:

What would an eternal, "agape only" marriage with Christ be like?
What do you look forward to in such a marriage?
Why did Christ so desire to be married to us that he was willing to die to redeem us for himself?

As I think about it, perhaps the reason I have sensed such sharp and persistent disagreement from you concerning our respective understandings of The Lord's Supper/Holy Communion is because Divine eros is central to my understanding, but not to yours. Do you agree?

Now that I know of your discomfort with the eros concept, I would be inclined to simply avoid, in our correspondence, any topic (such as Holy Communion) that, for me, features eros. The problem is, eros is foundational to my theology, spirituality, and eternal hope, and I therefore anticipate that we would be quite limited in what we could still talk about. For my part, I do not want to make you uncomfortable, dear friend, but I also do not want our spiritual dialogue to wither away.

EDIT: With your permission, dear chosen sister, I would like to, in a followup post, say a few words about what my understanding of eros is, just to make sure that our disagreement isn't simply a misunderstanding over terminology. May I do that? Please let me know how you wish to proceed, dear lady, and I will follow your lead.

EDIT: As I look back, I realize that I need to ask you to forgive me concerning something I said. In my previous post, I made the following statement:

"I also suspect that I perceive Christ's love in my life just as much as my 'Bible only' brother does, and perhaps even as much as my 'Bible only' sister does as well."

First, I want to clarify that, when I wrote "'Bible only' sister," I was not referring to you in particular. Rather, I was referring to the fact that I perceive female Christians to generally have a fuller, more pervasive sense of God's love than their male Christian counterparts do. Regardless:

1. It was prideful for me to compare myself to my brothers and sisters in this manner.

2. It was disrespectful and judgmental for me to use the term "Bible only" in this manner.

Dear sister and friend, please pray that God will forgive me, and that he will root pride, disrespect, and judgment out of my heart, transforming me by imparting the "more excellent way" of humility and charity.

Thank you and God bless, dear chosen lady.

A Constitutional, Christian conservative who voted for Ron and stands with Rand