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Why do Christians burn candles in Church?Dec 5th, 2009
As with many things in Christianity, lighting a candle during worship probably began not as a ritual, but from a practical reason, and as the years passed well meaning believers sought meaningful symbolism in what they did.
There are no absolute rules as to where or how many lighted candles must be offered. Their purchase is a little sacrifice to God, voluntary and not burdensome. A large and expensive candle is no more grace-giving than is a small one.He states that there are no "absolute" rules, then the author proceeds to speak of those who are "meticulous" and might light several candles, even lighting one for a saint. Then, if there are no available places for your candle "one should not extinquish" another candle - sounds like a rule to me. "The burning wax candle is pleasing to God, but He prizes the burning of the heart even more," and more.
While I appreciate that this person is attempting to dispel "rules," it brings up a problem I have with symbolism - it almost always leads to "rules" and dogma. The dogma can be found in the words of those holding to a symbol, and it is also found among those who disagree with the symbolism (or at least how the symbol is being appropriated) and condemn whatever practice is presented. In this instance it would be attacking Orthodoxy as "works" based. This, of course, applies as well to more prominent symbolism like water baptism. We have whole denominations based on disagreement with such dogma over symbolism.
Jan 12, 2012 -Thank you for your kind comment.
Well written. As a Baptist Minister I don\'t want to teach my people that lighting a candle will in any way help them in their approach to God. In other words, the lighting of a candle has nothing to do with a relationship with the Lord.
While I do not typically use candles, or much imagery at all, I do not see anything wrong with using candles (or any kind of imagery) but I somewhat disagree with you. Candles would not define your relationship with your wife, but having a candle-lit dinner with her CAN enhance the moment, making it a bit more special.
It probably would have helped my relationship with my wife if I had done MORE imagery! In the end, I do not use much imagery (like candles) in my relationship with God, but I think others benefit from it.
Happy to hear more of your thoughts.
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