Who We Are - Religious Background

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What is your religious background?

Roman Catholic/Orthodox Catholic
10
8%
Methodist
9
7%
Lutheran
4
3%
Presbyterian
6
5%
Episcopal/Church of England
4
3%
Baptist
31
26%
Pentecostal
11
9%
Non-denominational Christian/Other
41
34%
Latter Day Saints
1
1%
Non-Christian
4
3%
 
Total votes : 121

Re: Who We Are - Religious Background

Postby Johannes_1965 » Tue Nov 13, 2012 2:25 pm

MtnDewNudist wrote:Looks as if I'm the lone LDS here, I hope you Baptists won't hold that against me. :wink:

I first had to look up what LDS means in English and German.
You have a good website and as a catholic I can identify with that name:
We are the Church of Jesus Christ, we are in the latter (last) days according to Heb 2,1: "in these last days has spoken to us in His Son, whom He appointed heir of all things, through whom also He made the world." And we are called to be saints according to 1 Peter 1,15-16 and many other verses of the Bible.
Well, I don't know any LDS background teachings or history...
Johannes
"I am the vine, you are the branches; he who abides in Me and I in him, he bears much fruit..."
(John 15,5)
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Re: Who We Are - Religious Background

Postby MtnDewNudist » Tue Nov 13, 2012 8:31 pm

Johannes_1965 wrote:
MtnDewNudist wrote:Looks as if I'm the lone LDS here, I hope you Baptists won't hold that against me. :wink:

I first had to look up what LDS means in English and German.
You have a good website and as a catholic I can identify with that name:
We are the Church of Jesus Christ, we are in the latter (last) days according to Heb 2,1: "in these last days has spoken to us in His Son, whom He appointed heir of all things, through whom also He made the world." And we are called to be saints according to 1 Peter 1,15-16 and many other verses of the Bible.
Well, I don't know any LDS background teachings or history...
Johannes



You have done a fairly good job here. LDS (not LSD :roll:) is an abbreviated title often used for members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. Oder auf Deutsch "Kirche Jesu Christi Der Heiligen Der Letzten Tage." We use the title as we believe we are a restored church of Christ in these the Latter days before His second coming, consisting of saints (we use this term to designate followers of Christ in general and not special individuals), thus the Church of Jesus Christ consisting of saints living in the last days.

Ich mochte zu lessen Die Bibel auf Deutsch aber meine Deutsch ist noch nicht so gut.
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Re: Who We Are - Religious Background

Postby Johannes_1965 » Wed Nov 14, 2012 12:53 am

MtnDewNudist wrote:...Ich mochte zu lessen Die Bibel auf Deutsch aber meine Deutsch ist noch nicht so gut.

Ich möchte die Bibel auf deutsch lesen... You have enough good translations in English, much more versions than in German. A real progress would be to read it in Greek, because it's the original language and every translation is an interpretation. But if you want to read it in German in order to improve your German, that's a good method I applied in the other direction when I studied in the United States. The Gospel and letters of St. John are the simplest books
(as for language) to begin with. Certainly I still make mistakes in English...
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(John 15,5)
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Re: Who We Are - Religious Background

Postby MtnDewNudist » Thu Nov 15, 2012 12:55 am

I enjoy reading the Bible in different languages as each language has peculiarities that are specific for that language. It allows you to examine various verses from different angles and thus can allow you to get a better understanding of what is said.

I also enjoy studying different languages and cultures.
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Re: Who We Are - Religious Background

Postby ezduzit » Thu Nov 15, 2012 6:26 am

Born Again ?
Interesting numbers concerning who we are, but what percent are and or consider themselves born again ?

John 3:3 Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.
John 3:7 Marvel not that I said unto thee, Ye must be born again.
1 Peter 1:23 Being born again, not of corruptible seed, but of incorruptible, by the word of God, which liveth and abideth for ever.


Results of a Gallop poll are surprising...............
Ez

http://www.gallup.com/poll/14632/Who-Ha ... Again.aspx
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Re: Who We Are - Religious Background

Postby Johannes_1965 » Mon Nov 19, 2012 5:42 am

ezduzit wrote:Born Again ?
Interesting numbers concerning who we are, but what percent are and or consider themselves born again ?

John 3:3 Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.
John 3:7 Marvel not that I said unto thee, Ye must be born again.
1 Peter 1:23 Being born again, not of corruptible seed, but of incorruptible, by the word of God, which liveth and abideth for ever.


Results of a Gallop poll are surprising...............
Ez

http://www.gallup.com/poll/14632/Who-Ha ... Again.aspx

"Born again" is completely identified with "evangelical" in the poll. Catholics would identify Baptism as the event of being born again into the communion with the Father through Christ and the gift of the Holy Spirit; born again into the Church, the spiritual family of God, after the natural birth into a natural family (hopefully...).
"He saved us, not because of righteous things we had done, but because of his mercy. He saved us through the washing of rebirth and renewal by the Holy Spirit, whom he poured out on us generously through Jesus Christ our Savior, so that, having been justified by his grace, we might become heirs having the hope of eternal life." (Tit 3,5-7)
When we later have fallen out of faith and grace and come back to both we don't speak of rebirth but of conversion.
I was born again through baptism as a child, in 1965, and I came back to what I had received in 1987 through conversion and reconciliation, an ongoing process until death.
Johannes
"I am the vine, you are the branches; he who abides in Me and I in him, he bears much fruit..."
(John 15,5)
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Re: Who We Are - Religious Background

Postby Ramblinman » Mon Nov 19, 2012 11:13 pm

Johannes_1965 wrote:I was born again through baptism as a child, in 1965, and I came back to what I had received in 1987 through conversion and reconciliation, an ongoing process until death.
Johannes


Let me share how I was taught:
Infants and very young children are in a state of sinless grace. They do not inherit Adam's blood guilt, merely inherit a tendency to fall from grace as they mature. But God does not condemn an innocent one who has not yet sinned.

Although salvation is a gift of God, it is not given to the unwilling.
If God did not allow a degree of free will, he would never have created a creature who was capable of choosing to reject God's love. We would have been some mindless parrot trained to say "I love you" out of the instinctive compulsion to vocalize meaningless noise.

But by taking that risk of rejection, God had also created a creature that could love Him of his own free will.

But once we make that choice to love God (implying becoming a true disciple, not someone who merely admires Jesus), the indwelling Holy Spirit does not merely reside in us, but he works! The process of transformation begins.

I can't settle the argument about eternal security of salvation in this post. But I am inclined to lean heavily on the teachings in the first chapter of the second epistle of Peter about additions to one's faith. This passage I think provides the best explanation of this process of sanctification.
Although some claim that a Christian cannot turn away from the path, I have not been convinced by those arguments.
However, I believe that a Christian on the path of sanctification will not turn away from the Christian life, will not lose salvation. It is likely that he will stumble in small ways from time to time, but total apostasy? No! Possible, theoretically, but totally unnecessary for one to lose salvation, provided he grows, walks ever further in the path outlined in the teaching of the apostle Peter (who spoke under the power of the Holy Spirit). A Catholic might call this "magesterium" infallible teaching authority.

Back to the subject: I do believe it is possible for a Christian who is not walking, not growing, not becoming more like Jesus to stop and turn away from Christ.
I have friends who believe that God would destroy the earthly body of a backslidden Christian before he would reach the point of losing his soul and blaspheming the Holy Spirit.
There are people every day who gave every indication of being Christian and openly reject Jesus as their Lord, reject him as Son of God. While I cannot prove that such people were ever saved, we go back to their fruit. If they bore fruit for Christ, we must assume that salvation resided in them.

So would God cause the "destruction of the flesh" in every case? I would not count on it. Death is a great act of mercy to the backslidden who have not yet rejected their salvation, but some who were saints, do seem to have become totally apostate.
But again, I assure you that based on the Word of God in II Peter, this apostasy is totally preventable.

I want to be running into the arms of Jesus so fast, so fixed on his face that I give no quarter to the devil and my own lust. I want to be growing in grace and knowledge, ever greater sanctification and holiness.

For if you possess these qualities in increasing measure, they will keep you from being ineffective and unproductive in your knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. II Peter 1:9
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Re: Who We Are - Religious Background

Postby Johannes_1965 » Tue Nov 20, 2012 6:59 am

Ramblinman,
I completely agree with your main point from the second paragraph on.
Yet the Catholic Church doesn't believe we are born in the state of sinless grace but that original sin really exists: not as a conscious act of sin but as a lack of original grace and holiness granted to Adam and Eve. Consequently, the baptism of little children is also for the forgiveness of sins. To make my point I quote the Catechism:
The Baptism of infants
1250 Born with a fallen human nature and tainted by original sin, children also have need of the new birth in Baptism to be freed from the power of darkness and brought into the realm of the freedom of the children of God, to which all men are called.50 The sheer gratuitousness of the grace of salvation is particularly manifest in infant Baptism. The Church and the parents would deny a child the priceless grace of becoming a child of God were they not to confer Baptism shortly after birth.51
1251 Christian parents will recognize that this practice also accords with their role as nurturers of the life that God has entrusted to them.52
1252 The practice of infant Baptism is an immemorial tradition of the Church. There is explicit testimony to this practice from the second century on, and it is quite possible that, from the beginning of the apostolic preaching, when whole "households" received baptism, infants may also have been baptized.53
Faith and Baptism
1253 Baptism is the sacrament of faith.54 But faith needs the community of believers. It is only within the faith of the Church that each of the faithful can believe. the faith required for Baptism is not a perfect and mature faith, but a beginning that is called to develop. the catechumen or the godparent is asked: "What do you ask of God's Church?" the response is: "Faith!"
1254 For all the baptized, children or adults, faith must grow after Baptism. For this reason the Church celebrates each year at the Easter Vigil the renewal of baptismal promises. Preparation for Baptism leads only to the threshold of new life. Baptism is the source of that new life in Christ from which the entire Christian life springs forth.
1255 For the grace of Baptism to unfold, the parents' help is important. ...The whole ecclesial community bears some responsibility for the development and safeguarding of the grace given at Baptism.
"I am the vine, you are the branches; he who abides in Me and I in him, he bears much fruit..."
(John 15,5)
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Re: Who We Are - Religious Background

Postby natman » Tue Nov 20, 2012 6:36 pm

Johannes_1965 wrote:The Baptism of infants
1250 Born with a fallen human nature and tainted by original sin, children also have need of the new birth in Baptism to be freed from the power of darkness and brought into the realm of the freedom of the children of God, to which all men are called.50 The sheer gratuitousness of the grace of salvation is particularly manifest in infant Baptism. The Church and the parents would deny a child the priceless grace of becoming a child of God were they not to confer Baptism shortly after birth.51
1251 Christian parents will recognize that this practice also accords with their role as nurturers of the life that God has entrusted to them.52
1252 The practice of infant Baptism is an immemorial tradition of the Church. There is explicit testimony to this practice from the second century on, and it is quite possible that, from the beginning of the apostolic preaching, when whole "households" received baptism, infants may also have been baptized.53
Faith and Baptism
1253 Baptism is the sacrament of faith.54 But faith needs the community of believers. It is only within the faith of the Church that each of the faithful can believe. the faith required for Baptism is not a perfect and mature faith, but a beginning that is called to develop. the catechumen or the godparent is asked: "What do you ask of God's Church?" the response is: "Faith!"
1254 For all the baptized, children or adults, faith must grow after Baptism. For this reason the Church celebrates each year at the Easter Vigil the renewal of baptismal promises. Preparation for Baptism leads only to the threshold of new life. Baptism is the source of that new life in Christ from which the entire Christian life springs forth.
1255 For the grace of Baptism to unfold, the parents' help is important. ...The whole ecclesial community bears some responsibility for the development and safeguarding of the grace given at Baptism.


There are a couple of problems that I see with these statements.

The first is that they bring into question the source of "faith". What does the Bible say is the source of faith? Is it the act of Baptism, at any age?

Romans 10:17 "Faith comes from hearing the message, and the message is heard through the word about Christ."

But merely hearing the Word is not enough. We must be indwelled by the Holly Spirit in order to receive faith.

1 Cor 12:8-9 "To one there is given through the Spirit a message of wisdom, to another a message of knowledge by means of the same Spirit, to another faith by the same Spirit..."

I could not find anywhere in Scripture where faith comes through baptism... at any age.

Further, based on 1250 above, that the Catholics hold that salvation is also a result of baptism. Again, I do not see that in Scripture.

Mark 16:16 "Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved, but whoever does not believe will be condemned."

Note that those who "believe" and are baptized with be saved. But those who do not believe will be condemned. So it doesn't matter if you are baptized, regardless of your age. If you do not believe (place your faith and trust in Christ Jesus), then you are already condemned.

This is not to say that there is not great benefit in being born into a household of believers, where one can hear the Word from youth. However, even that is no guarantee that they will have faith to believe in Christ as Lord and Savior.

And while the Catholics, Lutherans and Presbyterians hold to infant baptism based on the verse that speaks of whole households being baptized not singling out infants, neither does it explicitly include infants. However, Mark 16 says that we must "believe" and be baptized. I find it difficult to fathom that any infant has the understanding to believe in anything, let alone the fact of their own sinfulness and their need for a Savior, Who is Christ Jesus.
SON-cerely,
Nathan Powers

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Re: Who We Are - Religious Background

Postby Ramblinman » Wed Nov 21, 2012 12:47 am

Johannes_1965 wrote:Yet the Catholic Church doesn't believe we are born in the state of sinless grace but that original sin really exists: not as a conscious act of sin but as a lack of original grace and holiness granted to Adam and Eve. Consequently, the baptism of little children is also for the forgiveness of sins.


"In those days people will no longer say, 'The fathers have eaten sour grapes, and the children's teeth are set on edge.' Instead, everyone will die for his own sin; whoever eats sour grapes--his own teeth will be set on edge. Jeremiah 31:29-30

So we must not worry about the salvation of infants and young children. Their teeth are not on edge from sour grapes their parents may have eaten.
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Re: Who We Are - Religious Background

Postby Johannes_1965 » Wed Nov 21, 2012 1:14 am

natman wrote:There are a couple of problems that I see with these statements.

The first is that they bring into question the source of "faith". What does the Bible say is the source of faith? Is it the act of Baptism, at any age?

Romans 10:17 "Faith comes from hearing the message, and the message is heard through the word about Christ."

But merely hearing the Word is not enough. We must be indwelled by the Holly Spirit in order to receive faith.

1 Cor 12:8-9 "To one there is given through the Spirit a message of wisdom, to another a message of knowledge by means of the same Spirit, to another faith by the same Spirit..."

I could not find anywhere in Scripture where faith comes through baptism... at any age.

Further, based on 1250 above, that the Catholics hold that salvation is also a result of baptism. Again, I do not see that in Scripture.

Mark 16:16 "Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved, but whoever does not believe will be condemned."

Note that those who "believe" and are baptized with be saved. But those who do not believe will be condemned. So it doesn't matter if you are baptized, regardless of your age. If you do not believe (place your faith and trust in Christ Jesus), then you are already condemned.

This is not to say that there is not great benefit in being born into a household of believers, where one can hear the Word from youth. However, even that is no guarantee that they will have faith to believe in Christ as Lord and Savior.

And while the Catholics, Lutherans and Presbyterians hold to infant baptism based on the verse that speaks of whole households being baptized not singling out infants, neither does it explicitly include infants. However, Mark 16 says that we must "believe" and be baptized. I find it difficult to fathom that any infant has the understanding to believe in anything, let alone the fact of their own sinfulness and their need for a Savior, Who is Christ Jesus.


Nathan, I'm happy to engage in such a discussion with you again.
The quoted text does not say that faith comes from baptism but that baptism requires faith, "the community of believers". It says that for baptism of an infant the faith of it's parents and of the community surrounding them is sufficient.
On the other hand it is true that we believe that salvation comes from baptism, because it is not only a symbol for salvation but a sacrament conveying salvation. I only have to change your red marks to make my point:
Mark 16:16 "Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved, but whoever does not believe will be condemned."
In the case of the baptism of a child the parents and the church want the Child to be saved, and to introduce it from the beginning by their education and example into the mystery of love, hope, faith and prayer.
We know well, that faith alone doesn't save but only when it is active in works of love. (James 2,17-19)
As you say, all education is no guarantee that the child will adhere to faith as an adult, but baptism is a guarantee that the child will directly go to heaven when it dies early, because it is already effectively consecrated to God and belongs to Him not only by Creation but by grace and indwelling of the Holy Spirit.
Infant baptism fits perfectly with the verses of Titus 3,4-7 I quoted somewhere else, or as the Catechism says:
The sheer gratuitousness of the grace of salvation is particularly manifest in infant Baptism.
A child is open to receive whatever is good. Jesus said, "Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these." (Mat 19,14)
Johannes
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(John 15,5)
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Re: Who We Are - Religious Background

Postby Johannes_1965 » Wed Nov 21, 2012 1:58 am

Johannes_1965 wrote:
natman wrote:There are a couple of problems that I see with these statements.

The first is that they bring into question the source of "faith". What does the Bible say is the source of faith? Is it the act of Baptism, at any age?
Romans 10:17 "Faith comes from hearing the message, and the message is heard through the word about Christ."
But merely hearing the Word is not enough. We must be indwelled by the Holly Spirit in order to receive faith.
1 Cor 12:8-9 "To one there is given through the Spirit a message of wisdom, to another a message of knowledge by means of the same Spirit, to another faith by the same Spirit..."

I could not find anywhere in Scripture where faith comes through baptism... at any age.

Further, based on 1250 above, that the Catholics hold that salvation is also a result of baptism. Again, I do not see that in Scripture.
Mark 16:16 "Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved, but whoever does not believe will be condemned."
Note that those who "believe" and are baptized with be saved. But those who do not believe will be condemned. So it doesn't matter if you are baptized, regardless of your age. If you do not believe (place your faith and trust in Christ Jesus), then you are already condemned.
This is not to say that there is not great benefit in being born into a household of believers, where one can hear the Word from youth. However, even that is no guarantee that they will have faith to believe in Christ as Lord and Savior.

And while the Catholics, Lutherans and Presbyterians hold to infant baptism based on the verse that speaks of whole households being baptized not singling out infants, neither does it explicitly include infants. However, Mark 16 says that we must "believe" and be baptized. I find it difficult to fathom that any infant has the understanding to believe in anything, let alone the fact of their own sinfulness and their need for a Savior, Who is Christ Jesus.


Nathan, I'm happy to engage in such a discussion with you again.
The quoted text does not say that faith comes from baptism but that baptism requires faith, "the community of believers". It says that for baptism of an infant the faith of it's parents and of the community surrounding them is sufficient.
On the other hand it is true that we believe that salvation comes from baptism, because it is not only a symbol for salvation but a sacrament: God conveying salvation. I only have to change your red marks to make my point:
Mark 16:16 "Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved, but whoever does not believe will be condemned."
In the case of infant baptism the parents and the church want the Child to be saved, be consecrated to the Holy Trinity, and to introduce it from the beginning by their education and example into the practice of love, hope, faith and prayer.
We know well, that faith alone doesn't save but only when it is active in works of love. (James 2,17-19)
As you say, all education is no guarantee that the child will adhere to faith as an adult, but baptism is a guarantee that the child will directly go to heaven when it dies early, because it is already effectively consecrated to God and belongs to Him not only by Creation but by grace and indwelling of the Holy Spirit.
Infant baptism fits perfectly with the verses of Titus 3,5-7 I quoted above in this strip, or as the Catechism says:
The sheer gratuitousness of the grace of salvation is particularly manifest in infant Baptism.
A child is open to receive whatever is good. Jesus said, "Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these." (Mat 19,14)
Johannes
"I am the vine, you are the branches; he who abides in Me and I in him, he bears much fruit..."
(John 15,5)
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Re: Who We Are - Religious Background

Postby natman » Wed Nov 21, 2012 1:42 pm

Johannes_1965 wrote:The quoted text does not say that faith comes from baptism but that baptism requires faith, "the community of believers". It says that for baptism of an infant the faith of it's parents and of the community surrounding them is sufficient.


So what they are saying is that someone else's faith can save them.

I do not believe that is the case either. While I DO believe that our own faith can be instrumental in guiding someone else TOWARD a salvific relationship with Christ, in the end, it is their own (personal) faith in Christ, which is itself a gracious gift from God, which saves them.
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Re: Who We Are - Religious Background

Postby Johannes_1965 » Wed Nov 21, 2012 11:53 pm

natman wrote:
Johannes_1965 wrote:The quoted text does not say that faith comes from baptism but that baptism requires faith, "the community of believers". It says that for baptism of an infant the faith of it's parents and of the community surrounding them is sufficient.


So what they are saying is that someone else's faith can save them.

I do not believe that is the case either. While I DO believe that our own faith can be instrumental in guiding someone else TOWARD a salvific relationship with Christ, in the end, it is their own (personal) faith in Christ, which is itself a gracious gift from God, which saves them.

Faith or trust in God is what opens the adult to grace. It is always God who saves by his love and mercy. Faith is only instrumental: no more than my response, no more than my openness to receive it. A child can already receive love and mercy without being capable of conscious acts of faith. It does receive human love from it's parents and divine love through baptism and our prayers. God acts on the child in baptism, making it his child, his temple, and he does so by means of the faithful minister of baptism. This is adult faith in baptism, faith in the sacraments, faith in the Church as Body of Christ, faith in Christ who continues to save through his Body.
We see and hear God acting in baptism at the Baptism of Jesus: The voice of the Father confirming him as his elected, beloved Son and the Holy Spirit descending on him in the visible form of a dove (Luke 3,22). The same thing happens invisibly at each baptism of any human being, infant or adult: God acts, God saves, God marks by his seal. It is not a symbol for me being saved by my faith but the act of God saving me by His grace, unconditionally.
Johannes
"I am the vine, you are the branches; he who abides in Me and I in him, he bears much fruit..."
(John 15,5)
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Re: Who We Are - Religious Background

Postby Johannes_1965 » Fri Nov 23, 2012 2:06 am

CnSnC wrote: Can a person or group of people with faith, can they pray someone else into heaven? I have an aunt who believes that a person can be saved just by her and her church praying for them. I believe there was also a incident recently of LDS people praying jews into heaven. Something like that.

I would say no and yes.
No, we can't pray someone into heaven in the sense of "quick prayerism" explained by Ez on the other strip about salvation. It's not we who save others by our prayers in two minutes.
Yes, God's want's our prayers of faith and trust united with the prayer of Christ. God saves and gives grace in answer to prayers of individuals and of the Church. I prefer to express this negatively: persons go to hell because nobody prays and cares for them.
I want to quote an article of the Catechism about intercessory prayer that can save others:

2634 Intercession is a prayer of petition which leads us to pray as Jesus did. He is the one intercessor with the Father on behalf of all men, especially sinners.112 He is "able for all time to save those who draw near to God through him, since he always lives to make intercession for them."113 The Holy Spirit "himself intercedes for us . . . and intercedes for the saints according to the will of God."114
2635 Since Abraham, intercession - asking on behalf of another has been characteristic of a heart attuned to God's mercy. In the age of the Church, Christian intercession participates in Christ's, as an expression of the communion of saints. In intercession, he who prays looks "not only to his own interests, but also to the interests of others," even to the point of praying for those who do him harm.115
2636 The first Christian communities lived this form of fellowship intensely.116 Thus the Apostle Paul gives them a share in his ministry of preaching the Gospel117 but also intercedes for them.118 The intercession of Christians recognizes no boundaries: "for all men, for kings and all who are in high positions," for persecutors, for the salvation of those who reject the Gospel.119
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