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Which came first?

I’ve encountered an interesting dilemma in one of my Russian classes. In discussing Russia’s religious background, we observed that it began with Paganism and later switched to Christianity, which was a “natural” transition given the people’s long tradition with seeking divine help and the similarities between the “Christian” God and the gods of the Slavonic pantheon.

The thing is that I believe that Christianity was in the hearts of men before even Paganism came about. Adam and Eve fell from grace long before people began to invent their own gods. At this point they were already in need of a Savior.

While I realize Christianity may not have “existed” in Russia previously, people were already searching for it in their hearts. Therefore, if Christianity was the answer, it was not because it conveniently fit into a mold that man had created, but filled the place in their hearts created by God from the very beginning. expand/-

So it is not that Christianity became the solution to a known need…it had always BEEN the solution!

A passage from my homework reading notes that Christianity “presented” humans with the problem of the conflict between flesh and spirit. Now they had a new problem to think of.  And now they had to make a choice. But I believe that this “problem” had already existed long before. Man is born into this conflict, and lives in desperation of reconciling himself to God.

Maybe I am being too picky about wording, but I believe that this concept is key to Christian doctrine because if we argue that man doesn’t worry about his soul until he hears about religion, then it follows that man is not prompted to make a choice and is therefore not responsible for his sin. On the other hand, how can a person be held responsible who “has not heard”?

Comments

  1. I agree with you that the longing for God is placed in our hearts...."my heart is restless until it rests in Thee". And I'd say that Christianity presented the solution, not the problem.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Не зря Павел, обращаясь к язычникам говорит:
    От одной крови Он произвел весь род человеческий для обитания по всему лицу земли, назначив предопределенные времена и пределы их обитанию, дабы они искали Бога, не ощутят ли Его и не найдут ли, хотя Он и недалеко от каждого из нас: ибо мы Им живем и движемся и существуем, как и некоторые из ваших стихотворцев говорили: "мы Его и род". (Деян.17:26-28)

    ReplyDelete
  3. Да, хорошая цитата. Я и это имела в виду.

    ReplyDelete

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