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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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