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lindbergh

Sign of the Cross - a sign of the devil?

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Being a Catholic, I have been accustomed to make the sign of the cross before and after praying -

 

--In the name of the Father

and of the Son

and of the Holy Spirit--

 

I've found nothing wrong with this. However, I've been hearing some other religion (christian) comment on this practice and go as far as saying that the sign of the cross is the sign of the devil. What is their basis for this? How dare they make such statements when they're Christians themselves?

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Being a Catholic, I have been accustomed to make the sign of the cross before and after praying -

 

--In the name of the Father

and of the Son

and of the Holy Spirit--

 

I've found nothing wrong with this. However, I've been hearing some other religion (christian) comment on this practice and go as far as saying that the sign of the cross is the sign of the devil. What is their basis for this? How dare they make such statements when they're Christians themselves?

 

You have found nothing wrong with this? How? Have you determined there is nothing wrong with making the sign of the cross from Tradition or Scripture? Most Protestants tend to jettison any practice that doesn't align with Sola Scriptura.

 

God bless,

William

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If it's not in the scripture, does that automatically mean that it is evil?

 

Is celebrating Christmas on December 25 evil too? Yes, it's not the true birth of Jesus but that doesn't make it evil right?

 

I believe that something is evil if it is bad. And I don't think it's bad... Just my opinion.. :)

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If it's not in the scripture, does that automatically mean that it is evil?

 

Is celebrating Christmas on December 25 evil too? Yes, it's not the true birth of Jesus but that doesn't make it evil right?

 

I believe that something is evil if it is bad. And I don't think it's bad... Just my opinion.. :)

 

You avoided answering the question. Ya kinda posed a right by majority argument. You stated how can others dare make an insinuation, yet you yourself have proved nothing of that tradition being truly Christian. While I am not suggesting that making the sign of the cross is of the devil, I am suggesting that it is a tradition and not derived from Scripture.

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Leaving aside the issue of sola scriptura, there is actually scriptural support for making the sign of the cross.

 

Making the sign of the cross is putting oneself under God's protection.

 

The prophet Ezekial tells of God’s judgement about to fall on the idolatrous in Jerusalem. Before that happens an angel is sent top put a mark on the foreheads of those who have remained faithful.

 

“And the Lord said to him, "Go through the city, through Jerusalem, and put a mark upon the foreheads of the men who sigh and groan over all the abominations that are committed in it." And to the others he said in my hearing, "Pass through the city after him, and smite; your eye shall not spare, and you shall show no pity; slay old men outright, young men and maidens, little children and women, but touch no one upon whom is the mark.” (Ez 9:4-6).

 

Similarly in Rev 7:3 an angels goes through the earth and puts a seal (mark) on the forehead of those who are to be protected from the wrath of God.

 

The mark in Ezekial was a cross, possibly an ‘X’ but more likely an upright cross. It was the Hebrew letter tahv (Taw).

 

 

Tahv

Spelling: tahv vahv

In shape, the tahv resembles a dalet joined to an upside-down vahv (some say a nune). In shape, it appears similar to raysh, but the ‘face’ is emphasized — and the little foot may represent a beard, implying ‘The ancient’ or ‘the revered one’.

In the proto-hebraic script, tahv was an ‘x’, and represented the extremely general concept of a mark, and also of unification and crossing over. Like the signature of an author, tahv is the ‘seal’ of the Holy One upon the processes and relations, interreflections and functions of the letters. (http://www.organelle.org/Alphabetics/tahv.html)

 

Actually it’s more like an upright cross than an ‘X’

 

Taw, Tav or Taf is the twenty-second and last letter in many Semitic abjads, including Phoenician, Aramaic, Hebrew Taw (Modern Hebrew: Tav) ת

The Phoenician letter gave rise to the Greek Tau (Τ), Latin T, and Cyrillic Т……

Taf is said to have come from a mark; or asterisk-like marking, perhaps indicating a signature.

(Wikipedia)

 

 

The Ancient picture [img is a type of "mark", probably of two sticks crossed to mark a place similar to the Egyptian hieroglyph of a picture of two crossed sticks. This letter has the meanings of mark, sign or signature.

The Modern Hebrew, Arabic and Greek names for this letter is tav (or taw), a Hebrew word meaning, mark. Hebrew, Greek and Arabic agree that the sound for this letter is "t".

The early pictograph evolved into in the Middle Semitic script and continued to evolve into In the Late Semitic Script. From the middle Semitic script comes the Modern Hebrew ת. The Early Semitic script is the origin of the Greek letter T and the Latin T.

(http://www.ancient-hebrew.org/3_taw.html)

 

Unfortunately the pictograms don't copy across in the last paragraph, but if you follow the link you can see them.

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Leaving aside the issue of sola scriptura, there is actually scriptural support for making the sign of the cross.

 

Making the sign of the cross is putting oneself under God's protection.

 

The prophet Ezekial tells of God’s judgement about to fall on the idolatrous in Jerusalem. Before that happens an angel is sent top put a mark on the foreheads of those who have remained faithful.

 

“And the Lord said to him, "Go through the city, through Jerusalem, and put a mark upon the foreheads of the men who sigh and groan over all the abominations that are committed in it." And to the others he said in my hearing, "Pass through the city after him, and smite; your eye shall not spare, and you shall show no pity; slay old men outright, young men and maidens, little children and women, but touch no one upon whom is the mark.” (Ez 9:4-6).

 

Similarly in Rev 7:3 an angels goes through the earth and puts a seal (mark) on the forehead of those who are to be protected from the wrath of God.

 

The mark in Ezekial was a cross, possibly an ‘X’ but more likely an upright cross. It was the Hebrew letter tahv (Taw).

 

 

Tahv

Spelling: tahv vahv

In shape, the tahv resembles a dalet joined to an upside-down vahv (some say a nune). In shape, it appears similar to raysh, but the ‘face’ is emphasized — and the little foot may represent a beard, implying ‘The ancient’ or ‘the revered one’.

In the proto-hebraic script, tahv was an ‘x’, and represented the extremely general concept of a mark, and also of unification and crossing over. Like the signature of an author, tahv is the ‘seal’ of the Holy One upon the processes and relations, interreflections and functions of the letters. (http://www.organelle.org/Alphabetics/tahv.html)

 

Actually it’s more like an upright cross than an ‘X’

 

Taw, Tav or Taf is the twenty-second and last letter in many Semitic abjads, including Phoenician, Aramaic, Hebrew Taw (Modern Hebrew: Tav) ת

The Phoenician letter gave rise to the Greek Tau (Τ), Latin T, and Cyrillic Т……

Taf is said to have come from a mark; or asterisk-like marking, perhaps indicating a signature.

(Wikipedia)

 

 

The Ancient picture [img is a type of "mark", probably of two sticks crossed to mark a place similar to the Egyptian hieroglyph of a picture of two crossed sticks. This letter has the meanings of mark, sign or signature.

The Modern Hebrew, Arabic and Greek names for this letter is tav (or taw), a Hebrew word meaning, mark. Hebrew, Greek and Arabic agree that the sound for this letter is "t".

The early pictograph evolved into in the Middle Semitic script and continued to evolve into In the Late Semitic Script. From the middle Semitic script comes the Modern Hebrew ת. The Early Semitic script is the origin of the Greek letter T and the Latin T.

(http://www.ancient-hebrew.org/3_taw.html)

 

Unfortunately the pictograms don't copy across in the last paragraph, but if you follow the link you can see them.

 

I see nothing in your scriptural references that suggests that the mark is a ritualistic/traditional sign of the cross. While I don't personally have an issue with making the sign of the cross, I tend to stay away from doing it as to prevent any confusion as to whether I am Catholic or Protestant. I find it rather a superstitious gesture. I think that accepting or rejecting the sign of the cross ultimately comes down to regulative or normative principals. I also think if a person refuses to make the sign of the cross, this needs be addressed as whether it is something that is in error to be corrected. While allowed by the normative principal, I can definitely see why this would be objected to by the regulative principal.

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I see nothing in your scriptural references that suggests that the mark is a ritualistic/traditional sign of the cross.

 

The mark was in the form of a cross of the shape that Jesus died on.

 

Also consider this:

“he has put his seal upon us and given us his Spirit in our hearts as a guarantee” (2Cor 1:22)

 

seal here is Strong 4972

to stamp (with a signet or private mark) for security or preservation

 

Or Thayer’s version:

1) to set a seal upon, mark with a seal, to seal

1a) for security: from Satan

1b) since things sealed up are concealed (as the contents of a letter), to hide, keep in silence, keep secret

1c) in order to mark a person or a thing

1c1) to set a mark upon by the impress of a seal or a stamp

1c2) angels are said to be sealed by God

1d) in order to prove, confirm, or attest a thing

1d1) to confirm authenticate, place beyond doubt

1d1a) of a written document

1d1b) to prove one’s testimony to a person that he is what he professes to be.

 

As Christians we are sealed, or marked, as the possession of Christ.

 

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The mark was in the form of a cross of the shape that Jesus died on.

 

As Christians we are sealed, or marked, as the possession of Christ.

 

Again, I see nothing in the Scriptures of the mark being a cross, not that there is no mark. Baptismal water is the sign seal and mark of the NT covenant.

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Again, I see nothing in the Scriptures of the mark being a cross, not that there is no mark. Baptismal water can also be the sign seal and mark of the NT covenant.

 

The word mark in Ez 9:4-6 is Hebrew taw - the last letter of the hebrew alphabet. At the time of Ezekial that was in the form of an upright cross. See the link I gave in my earlier post.

 

 

 

 

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Of course there are a lot of religions and churches out there seeing things different.

But as a catholic you do not have to be afraid of it being the sing of the devil. The cross is holy and part of our daily ritual.

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The prophet Ezekial tells of God’s judgement about to fall on the idolatrous in Jerusalem. Before that happens an angel is sent top put a mark on the foreheads of those who have remained faithful.

Also consider this:

“he has put his seal upon us and given us his Spirit in our hearts as a guarantee” (2Cor 1:22)

 

seal here is Strong 4972

to stamp (with a signet or private mark) for security or preservation

God commanded and angel to put a mark on the righteous people and the Holy Spirit seals those who believe but neither of these actions is the same as a person making the sign of the cross.

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God commanded and angel to put a mark on the righteous people and the Holy Spirit seals those who believe but neither of these actions is the same as a person making the sign of the cross.

 

I don’t see any necessity for there to be exact equivalents. We can extract principles from scripture.

 

There are different occasions when we might make the sign of the cross.

 

One is to put ourselves under the God’s protection. Or perhaps it might be better to say to invoke God’s protection. The angels marked the righteous people as a sign that they should be protected from harm.

 

The seal in 1Cor is a sign of Christ’s ownership of us. We belong to his flock. Sheep often have a mark on them to signify who owns them. Making the sign of the cross reminds us of whose sheep we are.

 

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I don't know why some people regarded the sign of the cross as evil. From what I've read, the sign of the cross can be found in:

  • Exodus 17:9-14
  • Revelation 7:3

However, it's not the sign of the cross per se, it's just a simple cross sign in the forehead. The verses do not require any person to even do ritualistic sign of the cross gestures. I do practice the sign of the cross as well, like you said it represents the trinity: God the father, Son and the Holy Spirit. For me, there's nothing wrong with using the sign of the cross as long as you have a purpose for doing it. Sadly, it has become a ritual for some people, they do the sign of the cross but don't really know why they're doing it.

 

So the sign of the cross is neither positive or negative, you can do it or not do it, it's up to you. But make sure that if you do the sign of the cross, you know its purpose and you're not just blindly following what others are doing.

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The word mark in Ez 9:4-6 is Hebrew taw - the last letter of the hebrew alphabet. At the time of Ezekial that was in the form of an upright cross. See the link I gave in my earlier post.
It took some time for to take note of this post but since I have I must address it. The links provided in post 5 prove nothing because they are not written by scholars. In fact both are nothing more than hacks.

 

The first one, Organelle, offers no references to even check the claims given. The author, whoever it is, has no expertise in this subject and offers nothing more than a contrived mysticism. The author of the site states:

 

Secondarily Organelle is a record of contact with a nonhuman intelligence. What this means is open to interpretation, however some of the material comprises translations of themes and concepts which were explained to me during my contact experience, beginning in May of 2002, and lasting for approximately 10 months.
He got it from a nonhuman intelligence. Yeah, right! Sounds more like non-intelligence human.

 

The second one is by a fellow named Jeff A. Benner. So what are his credential? None, and he even says so. However he does claim that he has spent "thousands of hours... ...in research and study." So what? Credentialed scholars who actually know the languages have spent thousands of hours in research and study. I for one would take their word over his any day of the week. My next step was to check his website bibliography. This is how I know for a fact that Benner does not know Hebrew. The books listed there are either, dated, not scholarly, or both. I know which Hebrew grammars, lexicons, and language studies are up to date and scholarly.

 

Given this information concerning your links, I suggest that you vet your sources rather than simply accepting their word for it.

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Being a Catholic, I have been accustomed to make the sign of the cross before and after praying -

 

--In the name of the Father

and of the Son

and of the Holy Spirit--

 

I've found nothing wrong with this. However, I've been hearing some other religion (christian) comment on this practice and go as far as saying that the sign of the cross is the sign of the devil. What is their basis for this? How dare they make such statements when they're Christians themselves?

 

Interesting question.

 

Here's another argument might be similar: "I heard someone say that closing our eyes when we pray is evil, yet I haven't found anything wrong with it."

 

Anyone care to address that argument?

 

 

God bless.

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For what my word is worth, I find that the sign of the cross is just superstition and unnecessary tradition. I don't call it demonic, just a tradition of superstition. What did Jesus do, or the apostles after the resurrection? Did they make the sign of the cross? Not of record. Marks are specific marks, and are a WAG as to what they will be. Sola Scriptura is not adding to or taking away from the Scriptures, as we are commanded not to do in Revelation 22:18-19 KJV.

 

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For what my word is worth, I find that the sign of the cross is just superstition and unnecessary tradition. I don't call it demonic, just a tradition of superstition. What did Jesus do, or the apostles after the resurrection? Did they make the sign of the cross? Not of record. Marks are specific marks, and are a WAG as to what they will be. Sola Scriptura is not adding to or taking away from the Scriptures, as we are commanded not to do in Revelation 22:18-19 KJV.

 

Mentioned that to some Mormons I was speaking to years ago, who replied, "It says that in Deuteronomy 12:32 as well, do we ignore everything that came after that?" lol

 

For myself, I see no harm in it. It is specific to Catholicism (as far as I know), and all denominations have distinctives by which they set themselves apart.

 

Could we argue that praying with one's eyes closed is evil? Anyone got a verse that tells us we should? Just curious about that. That's the only example I can come up with right now.

 

 

God bless.

 

 

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Isn't it required to make the sign of the cross in the RCC? If so, this is wrong. A priest I heard delivering the homily ranted about how sloppy people were getting on making the sign. He insisted they make it properly and to make it. With respect to Biblical teaching, this is wrong. It to my knowledge, it is not a voluntary act, but required of RCCs to do.

 

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Isn't it required to make the sign of the cross in the RCC? If so, this is wrong. A priest I heard delivering the homily ranted about how sloppy people were getting on making the sign. He insisted they make it properly and to make it. With respect to Biblical teaching, this is wrong. It to my knowledge, it is not a voluntary act, but required of RCCs to do.

 

Well, Baptists in large part teach that tithing is required, anyone want to show that from the New Testament?

 

Hope everyone has a blessed remainder of their day.

 

 

God bless.

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It is specific to Catholicism (as far as I know),

Eastern Orthodox also make the sign of the cross but in the opposite direction from Catholics. Catholics touch their left shoulder and then their right in making the sign; Orthodox reverse this, touching the right shoulder and then the left.

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S.T wrote: Well, Baptists in large part teach that tithing is required, anyone want to show that from the New Testament?

 

I agree. There is no tithing commandment in the NT.

 

Under the dispensation of grace taught by Paul, there is only one baptism too---that of the Holy Spirit. Water baptism disappeared after the Pentecost because the dispensations requiring it had passed. Almost all churches still do it to this day, however. In his early ministry, Paul did baptize, but soon stopped, declaring there is only one baptism, that of the Holy Spirit. This may shake some of you up, but study the writings of Paul, whom Jesus by direct revelation after the resurrection, chose Paul to be His only apostle after the resurrection and revealed mysteries to him that were revealed from Paul to the people in due time. Dispensations in part represent a progression of revelation of mysteries, as to what they are and when they are to take over many in place of previous dispensations. May I remind some that dispensations are not just about the end times and eschatology... they are stewardships of the revelations of mysteries from the beginning to the end.

 

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Under the dispensation of grace taught by Paul, there is only one baptism too---that of the Holy Spirit.

 

Agree with this completely, and see that this is relevant to the other thread, so want to clarify whether you are saying that the only Baptism relevant to salvation from an eternal perspective is the Baptism with the Holy Ghost, right?

 

Now, the question is...when did this begin?

 

 

Water baptism disappeared after the Pentecost because the dispensations requiring it had passed.

 

Not really, being baptized in association with Christ is a tradition began by those ordained to convey the Gospel to the world. While unfortunately some groups have erred in teaching Baptismal Regeneration, that doesn't mean we neglect the importance baptism had in first century culture. While being baptized in water does not impact salvation on an eternal basis, I do think that we can question those who refuse to be baptized in either Christ's Name or the Name of the Father, Son, and Holy Ghost.

 

Sometimes we go to extremes in trying to promote a doctrine, or, try to deny a doctrine. An example would be, because we reject the deification of Mary, we then despise Mary, which is wrong. We shouldn't let our attempts to address error take us to extremes which then find us in conflict with a sound approach.

 

The fact is that while water baptism does not save, the Apostles baptized. Baptism with the Holy Ghost is the only baptism that is relevant to salvation from an eternal perspective, and Christ is the Baptizer. At no time did Christ baptize anyone in water, and in fact John the Baptist makes it clear He will not:

 

 

Matthew 3

 

King James Version

 

11 I indeed baptize you with water unto repentance. but he that cometh after me is mightier than I, whose shoes I am not worthy to bear: he shall baptize you with the Holy Ghost, and with fire:

 

12 Whose fan is in his hand, and he will throughly purge his floor, and gather his wheat into the garner; but he will burn up the chaff with unquenchable fire.

 

 

In view is salvation or damnation. One will either be baptized with the Holy Ghost or they will be burned up like chaff with unquenchable fire.

 

And again, we see that prior to Christ baptizing with the Holy Ghost, men were baptized with water. Those who were baptized were identified with John (in this example). Those who were "baptized in the sea" were identified with Moses. We are identified with Christ, and that is the point of water baptism in our tradition. Rather than someone being saved at that time. Christ baptizes with the Holy Ghost, whereas men use water.

 

 

 

God bless.

 

 

 

 

 

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Catholics make the sign of the cross when praying, at the start and at the end of the prayer. And it is not confined to the church only but also anywhere that prayer is performed. When traveling, a sign of the corss is also done when passing by a church to acknowledge that church. It may not be in the Bible but the sign of the cross using the right hand is a tradition. Our teacher in religion subject said that the sign of the corss is an affirmation of our belief in the God the Father, the Holy Spirt, and God the Son. And we were also taught that in times of trouble, making the sign of the cross will do us good and may help save us from disaster.

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