Ed Stetzer on Hanegraaff Switch: What CT Gets Wrong About Orthodox Conversions

Writing in Evangelical flagship publication Christianity Today, Ed Stetzer, who is a professor at Wheaton and heads up the Billy Graham Center for Evangelism, made some guesses about why Evangelicals become Orthodox Christians in “Hank Hanegraaff’s Switch to Eastern Orthodoxy, Why People Make Such Changes, and Four Ways Evangelicals Might Respond“: The obvious question is what draws evangelicals to more liturgical traditions—and…

Why Should Pentecostals Become Orthodox Christians? A Short Answer

The following is adapted from the working text for the revised, expanded edition of Orthodoxy and Heterodoxy: Finding the Way to Christ in a Complicated Religious Landscape, which is available as an updated podcast, with a new episode available weekly. The first edition of the book from 2011 is still available. This passage is adapted from the concluding passage of the all-new…

One Quote from St. Ignatius Converted this Guy to Catholicism?

I happened upon this article today. Here’s an excerpt: Like St. Paul before him, St. Ignatius, in his capacity as Bishop of Antioch, is writing with authority against those who break off from the Church founded by Christ. Anyone, says Ignatius, who walks in heresy—that is, against the teachings of Ignatius and the other appointed Bishops—is, alarmingly, “out of sympathy with the…

“Born Again” Experience or Baptismal Regeneration?

 Soon after the Berlin Wall came down many American Evangelicals saw Eastern Europe as a mission field ripe for the Gospel.  However, they overlooked the fact that Orthodox Christianity had already been there for over a thousand years!  Mihai Oara wrote “Conversions and Conversions: Romanians between Orthodoxy and Evangelicalism” which describes how Evangelicals sought to evangelize Eastern European Orthodox. The typical narrative…

The Problem of Authority: How Do We Know What Is True?

By Mark Meador When formerly Protestant converts to Orthodoxy (or Roman Catholicism) recount the theological reasons for their conversion, it is not uncommon to hear among those reasons that they were persuaded by “the authority of the Church.” Once you become convinced of the Church’s authority, the telling goes, everything else falls into place. While this seems to be sufficient for the…

Orthodoxy and the Problem of Choice: Converting Out of Postmodern Pluralism

C. S. Lewis once famously remarked that “mere” Christianity, as he conceived of it, …is… like a hall out of which doors open into several rooms…[and] it is in the rooms, not in the hall, that there are fires and chairs and meals. The hall is a place to wait in, a place from which to try the various doors, not a…

Losing our Religion: On “Retaining” Young People in the Orthodox Church

A recent article on the challenge of interfaith marriage in Greek Orthodoxy has been circulating widely on Facebook.[1] One reason for the article’s popularity is its startling claim that 90% of Americans with Greek roots are no longer in communion with the Orthodox Church. Similarly dismal statistics are likely true for most Orthodox jurisdictions in the United States, but the article in…

Why I Stopped Being a Calvinist (Part 5): A Deformed Christology

By Robin Phillips A Deformed Christology About the same time that my wife and I started to question Monergism, we began to be interested in the early ecumenical councils of the church. We were fascinated to learn that the Sixth Ecumenical Council (680-681) had provided a framework for understanding the relationship between the human and the divine when it rejected the heresies…

Why I Stopped Being a Calvinist (Part 4): The Heresy of Monergism

By Robin Phillips The Heresy of Monergism If all Calvinism were to be encapsulated by a single term it would be the word Monergism. The term comes from the Greek mono meaning “one,” and erg meaning “work,” and describes the notion that salvation is affected by only one agent, namely God. As R.C. Sproul explains it, “A monergistic work is a work…

Why I Stopped Being a Calvinist (Part 3): Calvinism Dislocates God From our Experience of Him

Calvinism Dislocates God From our Experience of Him By Robin Phillips We have seen in Part 2 of this series that Calvinism essentially asserts that God has two sides of His character, a side that delights to show mercy and a side that delights to punish sin. Both these sides must be expressed. By redeeming the elect, God’s love and mercy are…