Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Notes from the second talk

Dr. George Bebawi
Christian Witness
My Life in Christ Conference, July 13, 2007

Christianity is the revelation of God incarnate.

If you are ashamed of being human or of God, the Incarnation will be alien to you.

4 facets of human nature:
1. Free will
2. Love
3. Development (of conscience, etc.)
4. Growth

Difference between Christianity and Islam is freedom.

In Christianity, if you start with humanity, you come to God, and if you start with God you come to humanity.

Islam is slavery to the law of God.

In Christianity you are the child of God; God came to save us from slavery.

Christian witness can also be teasing and humorous.

Buddhism has as its goal the lack of self.

In Christianity we witness to the great project of being completely human; sin makes us less human.

Christ is the Lover of Mankind.

God’s greatest desire is to be in each of us.

If God is out of my life:
1. I lose the sense of infinity
2. I am shapeless
3. I lose help
4. I experience inner death

With faith in God we are able to look beyond our being.

Our modern life has succeeded in making us dependent on things outside ourselves.

Solzhenitsyn: they have taken our wives, our cars, our names, and by taking everything they have lost their power over us.

We have a center of life and if we are Christian our center of life wants to be like God.

If we lose God our center of life becomes shapeless but with God we have a shape.

Communists, Nazis, have no God and so they have no center and no aim to become like God.

God is not a Big Brother waiting for you to make a mistake to punish you.

It is a great thing to lean on God Who is our help.

When we pray we look for infinite help.

Prayer opens.

You discover Orthodoxy by listening to the Liturgy; we sing our theology.

If you want to look at the difference between religions, look at the prayer.

The death of the heart, life is dead.

You are ignorant of yourself.
You have an inability to love others.
You have a life without God.
You have the inability to forgive.
You make something material the goal of life.

Christ destroyed death by giving us life.

Protestants only know Biblical texts; they cannot go beyond them.

Most of the Lord’s teaching is in parables.

Keep your eyes on daily life; talk about God, but do it in the way Christ did [i.e., simply and by means of stories.]

We are rich in stories.

We receive the power of divine love through communion.

The secular world is full of war, violence, distrust, greed, etc. all covered up with lies.

We all seek truth.

Truth in Christianity is a person; in the secular world it is a chain of ideas.

An idea is in your head and can be replaced; a person is a reality.

Needs are the most powerful element in the secular world; they make us slaves.

It is fine to secure our needs, but not to be slaves to them.

Needs are a vacuum cleaner that suck you into secular life.

Secular life breaks us but Christ came to make us whole.

Christian witness is about healing broken souls.

You can imagine anything you want about God, but did God reveal it to you?

Sacrificial love is nowhere except in Christianity.

No comments: