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Faber

Hank Hanegraaff: A new convert to Eastern Orthodoxy

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This is a disaster. He now joins the ranks of those who pray to (and yes that means "worship") others who are not God.

 

 

By Robert Bowman

On Palm Sunday, April 9, 2017, Hank Hanegraaff formally joined the Orthodox Church. Since 1989 Hanegraaff has been the President of the Christian Research Institute (CRI) and (since ca. 1992) the host of CRI’s Bible Answer Man radio program.[1] Hank, his wife Kathy, and two of their twelve children were inducted by a sacramental rite called chrismation into the Orthodox faith at St. Nektarios Greek Orthodox Church in Charlotte, North Carolina, near where CRI is based. In chrismation, a baptized individual is anointed with oil in order to receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.[2] There was no prior announcement of Hanegraaff’s conversion, although there were rumors he was a catechumen (someone in a formal process leading to conversion). Ironically, the day before his chrismation an evangelical blogger, Jason Engwar at Triablogue, documented evidence from Hanegraaff’s radio broadcasts over the past year that suggested he was moving toward Eastern Orthodoxy.[3] Father Thomas Soroka, an Orthodox priest, first broke the news of Hanegraaff’s chrismation on Facebook. Although Hanegraaff’s conversion to Orthodoxy is a dramatic development, in a way his theology and religiosity has been in almost constant movement throughout his nearly three decades at CRI. Hanegraaff’s family background was Dutch Reformed and his ministry experience prior to CRI included working with Calvinist pastor and broadcaster D. James Kennedy. When he arrived at CRI he was also a staunch young-earth creationist. Over the years Hanegraaff transitioned to old-earth creationism (which happens to be my position as well) but also passed through two or three forms of eschatology, eventually becoming an advocate for the controversial view known as preterism (which views almost all NT prophecy as fulfilled in the first century). Presumably now that he has become Orthodox he will need to support its traditional eschatology, which is amillennial. Hanegraaff’s conversion to Eastern Orthodoxy should not be viewed as a mere isolated occurrence. There has been a definite trend for the past few decades of a growing number of American evangelical Protestants converting to either Catholicism or Orthodoxy. As long ago as 1992, the trend of conversions of evangelical clergy to Orthodoxy was noted in a book.[4] I want to suggest some lessons (by no means exhaustive) that need to be learned from this recent turn of events.

http://www.religiousresearcher.org/

Edited by Faber

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I learned of this today. I used to listen to his program years ago, but stopped for a variety of reasons. It is curious he converted Eastern Orthodoxy. The reasons given in the article were, frankly, kind of vague. Some years back I did a study of the Orthodox churches, and while interesting from a historical standpoint, I found the theology suspect.

 

Thoughts on this development? Thoughts on Orthodoxy in general? How about evangelicals leaving for said religion?

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Staff
I learned of this today. I used to listen to his program years ago, but stopped for a variety of reasons. It is curious he converted Eastern Orthodoxy. The reasons given in the article were, frankly, kind of vague. Some years back I did a study of the Orthodox churches, and while interesting from a historical standpoint, I found the theology suspect.

 

Thoughts on this development? Thoughts on Orthodoxy in general? How about evangelicals leaving for said religion?

 

The Semi-Pelagian soteriology of the Eastern Orthodox church was enough to be suspect and abandon any further inquiry. No different than Rome in that aspect. At least from the articles I read, they leaned harder Pelagian than Semi - because they rejected early church fathers and sided not with them.

 

God bless,

William

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I find the word "conversion" to be typical for those entering the Orthodox or Catholic communions. Like taking an eraser. But if he keeps his original baptism, more change than conversion.

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John MacArthur recently addressed Hank Hanegraaff's joining the Eastern Orthodox Church. He took several doctrines and addressed each one as to its unbiblical view. This was done in one of his churches services and broadcast on TV and YouTube.

 

This week on YouTube Hank Hanegraaff had a rebuttal to what John MacArthur has said about him and the Eastern Orthodox. Hank did a lot of saying how much he loved John and how close they were as friends, and how many times that had gone golfing. He quoted a number of verses from 1 John.

 

I felt he chased a lot of rabbits and really did not do a good explaining his move to the Eastern Church.

 

I first started listening to The Bible Answer man when I drove a truck delivering Xray film in Los Angles in 1979. After Walter M. died hand took over.

 

About 10 to 15 years ago Hank made a change and we began to listen to him a lot less. In the last five years we stopped completely.

 

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At 2:53-54 he said "We don't pray to saints."

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mvvmrNAFa5Q

 

The Orthodox Church of America: Properly speaking, Orthodox Christians do not “pray to” the Mother of God instead of God; we seek her intercession before her Son, asking her to pray on our behalf; another Orthodox hymn states that “the prayers of a mother availeth much before her Son.”

https://oca.org/questions/teaching/mary-prayer-death

 

 In response to both quotes from above I believe they are misleading. In terms of Mary she is addressed by "asking her to pray on our behalf."

 By asking her or any of the other 'saints' in heaven anything does constitute praying to her and them. If 5 million people all spoke at the same time to Mary silently within their hearts asking her to do something for them then that is praying to her - and this means worshiping her. The Bible teaches that God alone is to be worshiped (Deuteronomy 6:13; Matthew 4:10).

 

 

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On ‎1‎/‎11‎/‎2019 at 7:54 PM, Faber said:

At 2:53-54 he said "We don't pray to saints."

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mvvmrNAFa5Q

 

The Orthodox Church of America: Properly speaking, Orthodox Christians do not “pray to” the Mother of God instead of God; we seek her intercession before her Son, asking her to pray on our behalf; another Orthodox hymn states that “the prayers of a mother availeth much before her Son.”

https://oca.org/questions/teaching/mary-prayer-death

 

 In response to both quotes from above I believe they are misleading. In terms of Mary she is addressed by "asking her to pray on our behalf."

 By asking her or any of the other 'saints' in heaven anything does constitute praying to her and them. If 5 million people all spoke at the same time to Mary silently within their hearts asking her to do something for them then that is praying to her - and this means worshiping her. The Bible teaches that God alone is to be worshiped (Deuteronomy 6:13; Matthew 4:10).

 

 

 

I was curious, based on my experience as a Catholic, to see what the Eastern Orthodox consider worship.  To a Catholic, true worship is the Mass, and a Mass cannot be offered to anyone but the Trinity.  The Eastern Orthodox view turns out to be similar.  

 

Eastern Orthodox worship in this article is distinguished from Eastern Orthodox prayer in that 'worship' refers to the activity of the Christian Church as a body offering up prayers to God while 'prayer' refers to the individual devotional traditions of the Orthodox.

The worship of the Orthodox Church is viewed as the Church's fundamental activity because the worship of God is the joining of man to God in prayer and that is the essential function of Christ's Church. The Orthodox view their Church as being the living embodiment of Christ, through the grace of His Holy Spirit, in the people, clergy, monks and all other members of the Church. Thus the Church is viewed as the Body of Christ on earth which is perpetually unified with the Body of Christ in heaven through a common act of worship to God.  

 

 

I obviously don't agree, but I wonder if that's part of how they're saying they're not worshipping Mary or the saints

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5 hours ago, kunoichi9280 said:

Eastern Orthodox worship in this article is distinguished from Eastern Orthodox prayer in that 'worship' refers to the activity of the Christian Church as a body offering up prayers to God while 'prayer' refers to the individual devotional traditions of the Orthodox.

The worship of the Orthodox Church is viewed as the Church's fundamental activity because the worship of God is the joining of man to God in prayer and that is the essential function of Christ's Church. 

 

 I don't see how prayer is distinguished from worship "since the worship of God is the joining of man to God in prayer."

 

 All prayer is worship. But not all worship is prayer. There are other ways to worship God besides prayer (fasting, giving, etc.), but all prayer is worship.

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10 hours ago, Faber said:

 

 I don't see how prayer is distinguished from worship "since the worship of God is the joining of man to God in prayer."

 

 All prayer is worship. But not all worship is prayer. There are other ways to worship God besides prayer (fasting, giving, etc.), but all prayer is worship.

I agree.  All prayer is worship.  I would have said as a Catholic that all prayer is sacred but only prayer to God is worship, and that since there is no intent there to worship Mary or the saints, therefore we can't be; that worship requires intent.  Hairsplitting, I know.  I would have said that since the Mass was not offered to Mary or the saints and the Mass is the true aim and expression of all worship that we do not worship Mary or the saints.  And the EO are even more liturgically focused then Catholics.  Both Catholics and EO have Eucharistic and corporate focuses on the ideas around worship.  This website illustrates that a little bit better:  https://www.goarch.org/-/worship

 

"Worship in the Orthodox Church is expressed in four principal ways:

The Eucharist, which is the most important worship experience of Orthodoxy. Eucharist means thanksgiving and is known in the Orthodox Church as the Divine Liturgy.
The Sacraments, which affirm God's presence and action in the important events of our Christian lives. All the major Sacraments are closely related to the Eucharist. These are: Baptism, Chrismation, Confession, Marriage, Holy Orders, and Anointing of the sick.
Special Services and Blessings, which also affirm God's presence and action in all the events, needs and tasks of our life.
The Daily Offices, which are the services of public prayer which occur throughout the day. The most important are Matins, which is the morning prayer of the Church, and Vespers, which is the evening prayer of the Church."

 

"Since Worship in Orthodoxy is an expression of the entire Church the active participation and involvement of the congregation is required. There are no "private" or "said" Services in the Orthodox Church and none may take place without a congregation. This strong sense of community is expressed in the prayers and exhortations which are in the plural tense."

 

 

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On 1/26/2018 at 11:21 AM, Just Mike said:

John MacArthur recently addressed Hank Hanegraaff's joining the Eastern Orthodox Church. He took several doctrines and addressed each one as to its unbiblical view. This was done in one of his churches services and broadcast on TV and YouTube.

 

 

 

Do you have a link to this?  TIA!

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4 hours ago, kunoichi9280 said:

Do you have a link to this?  TIA!

I posted this over a year ago, I have no idea. Contact Them and they might help.

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On 4/13/2017 at 2:21 AM, Faber said:

This is a disaster. He now joins the ranks of those who pray to (and yes that means "worship") others who are not God.

 

 

By Robert Bowman

On Palm Sunday, April 9, 2017, Hank Hanegraaff formally joined the Orthodox Church. Since 1989 Hanegraaff has been the President of the Christian Research Institute (CRI) and (since ca. 1992) the host of CRI’s Bible Answer Man radio program.[1] Hank, his wife Kathy, and two of their twelve children were inducted by a sacramental rite called chrismation into the Orthodox faith at St. Nektarios Greek Orthodox Church in Charlotte, North Carolina, near where CRI is based. In chrismation, a baptized individual is anointed with oil in order to receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.[2] There was no prior announcement of Hanegraaff’s conversion, although there were rumors he was a catechumen (someone in a formal process leading to conversion). Ironically, the day before his chrismation an evangelical blogger, Jason Engwar at Triablogue, documented evidence from Hanegraaff’s radio broadcasts over the past year that suggested he was moving toward Eastern Orthodoxy.[3] Father Thomas Soroka, an Orthodox priest, first broke the news of Hanegraaff’s chrismation on Facebook. Although Hanegraaff’s conversion to Orthodoxy is a dramatic development, in a way his theology and religiosity has been in almost constant movement throughout his nearly three decades at CRI. Hanegraaff’s family background was Dutch Reformed and his ministry experience prior to CRI included working with Calvinist pastor and broadcaster D. James Kennedy. When he arrived at CRI he was also a staunch young-earth creationist. Over the years Hanegraaff transitioned to old-earth creationism (which happens to be my position as well) but also passed through two or three forms of eschatology, eventually becoming an advocate for the controversial view known as preterism (which views almost all NT prophecy as fulfilled in the first century). Presumably now that he has become Orthodox he will need to support its traditional eschatology, which is amillennial. Hanegraaff’s conversion to Eastern Orthodoxy should not be viewed as a mere isolated occurrence. There has been a definite trend for the past few decades of a growing number of American evangelical Protestants converting to either Catholicism or Orthodoxy. As long ago as 1992, the trend of conversions of evangelical clergy to Orthodoxy was noted in a book.[4] I want to suggest some lessons (by no means exhaustive) that need to be learned from this recent turn of events.

http://www.religiousresearcher.org/

Hi F,,,

I'd like to say the following regarding the above....

It seems to me that some leave Protestantism to go to either the Catholic or Orthodox church.  Although we can never know why someone really is taking such an action...I do feel that we Protestants are too divided in our theology and are becoming ever more so...and I'd also like to say that I feel our faith, as in religion, is being watered down and may no longer be recognizable one day in the near future.

 

On the other hand...some of those denominations come to Protestantism because they find a Jesus that is more personal and an understanding of scripture that is more simple and basic, in the sense that tens or hundreds of doctrine are not necessary to describe what we believe.

 

I wish we weren't so divided....

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Hi GG,

 

 I believe the Bible is very straightforward and simple to understand that none but God alone is the proper recipient of prayer. This belief is never to be compromised.

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