OrthodoxChristianity.net

Moderated Forums => Orthodox-Other Christian Discussion => Orthodox-Catholic Discussion => Topic started by: ignatius on December 06, 2007, 02:05:19 PM

Title: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: ignatius on December 06, 2007, 02:05:19 PM
What is the Orthodox understanding of the Bishops' power to Bind and Loose on Earth and in Heaven?  ???
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Timos on December 06, 2007, 06:58:35 PM
Wow it must be confusing to be Catholic! So, last year or so there was no more purgatory...and now its back again...I just don't get it  ???
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Νεκτάριος on December 06, 2007, 07:12:47 PM
Wow it must be confusing to be Catholic! So, last year or so there was no more purgatory...and now its back again...I just don't get it  ???

I'd be very interested to know which official Catholic source claimed that there is no purgatory. 
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Joab Anias on December 06, 2007, 07:19:43 PM
I'd be very interested to know which official Catholic source claimed that there is no purgatory. 

There was none.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: ozgeorge on December 07, 2007, 04:08:30 AM
Indulgences.......sigh.......
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: RPConover on December 07, 2007, 04:08:32 PM
Wow it must be confusing to be Catholic! So, last year or so there was no more purgatory...and now its back again...I just don't get it  ???

No, purgatory was there last year, only limbo was tossed out. The nicest thing the pope could do would just be to grant Plenary indulgences to all the souls in purgatory and get them all out right now! I'd think that would be the first thing I would do every morning, grant everyone in purgatory a plenary indulgence so as not to seem stingy, making their families travel the world to get it.  ::)
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Jakub on December 07, 2007, 05:18:05 PM
The Church gives the name "Purgatory" to this final act of purification of the elect...

CCC 1030/1031

I really don't pay attention to the term indulgence myself...

Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: JoeS on December 07, 2007, 05:28:28 PM
The Church gives the name "Purgatory" to this final act of purification of the elect...

CCC 1030/1031

I really don't pay attention to the term indulgence myself...



I never got the gist of indulgences either.  I dont know what indulgences have to do with salvation.  Is this not an innovation of the west?  Did not indulgences pay for most of St. Peters Cathedral in Rome?

How can a man issue something like this?  Do people believe in this?

Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: RPConover on December 07, 2007, 06:00:05 PM
I never got the gist of indulgences either.  I dont know what indulgences have to do with salvation.  Is this not an innovation of the west?  Did not indulgences pay for most of St. Peters Cathedral in Rome?

How can a man issue something like this?  Do people believe in this?



It all has to do with the Western idea of the "merits of the saints" and binding and loosing. Basically it's been taught in the Roman Catholic Church that there is a treasury of merits in heaven earned by the saints. The pope can therefore issue indulgences, drawing from this treasury of merit, and apply it in expiation of the time one is due to spend in purgatory( where one is being cleanesed of a "residual" stain of forgiven sins for which insufficient pennance was done, or unconfessed venial sins.) The pope issues indulgences, promising either the partial or full removal of time in purgatory. An indulgence may also be applied to the deceased. In order for one to gain an indulgenxe one must will to gain said indulgence, usually attatched to performing some sort of pious act, recieve Comunion, pray for the intentions of the pope and be free from all attatchment to even venial sin. If the last condition of freedom of attatchment to venial sin is not met, the indulgence becomes partial, and not plenary(full).

In past times indulgences were issuedreitting a number of days, often confused to mean that one was remitted a number of days in purgatory. Correctly, the mention of days was tied to the early Church where penance was done for lengthy periods of times, weeks months, etc. The person would be remitted said amount of days for which penance would have been performed for certain sins. Today indulgences no longer mention days, only whether they are plenary or partial, and are still issued by the pope, while mmost of the old ones are still valid.

Basically it's all based on Western legalism, and the idea that while sins are forgiven, atonement must be made for them, either here, or after death.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: minasoliman on December 07, 2007, 06:01:00 PM
Due to the news posted here:

http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,13800.0/topicseen.html

I was curious to here from the Catholics an explanation of the doctrine of indulgences and what historical/Biblical record that they use in teaching this.

Thank you.

Mina
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: RPConover on December 07, 2007, 06:02:06 PM
I never got the gist of indulgences either.  I dont know what indulgences have to do with salvation.  Is this not an innovation of the west?  Did not indulgences pay for most of St. Peters Cathedral in Rome?

How can a man issue something like this?  Do people believe in this?



The indulgences which paid for St. peter's in Rome were supposedly issued for almsgiving, however it does seem a lot like 'buying' an indulgence, and thats basically what the practice was in reality.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Νεκτάριος on December 07, 2007, 06:13:40 PM
The modern cleaned up definition in short is that purgatory is a final cleansing before one can enter heaven (i.e nothing impure can enter).  Indulgences are ways to work on this ahead of time. 

In RC theology sin has both eternal and temporal consequences.  The eternal are forgiven through Christ's redemptive work.  The latter have to be removed through cleansing (i.e purgatory).  For instance you can be forgiven instantly but the effects of the sin remain through proclivities towards similar passions. 

A partial indulgence is some penitential act (a prayer, work of mercy etc.) that will help to partially wash away existing impurities.

A plenary indulgence is a penitential act that is done in conjunction with going to confession and then receiving communion and will entirely create a "clean slate."

Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: lubeltri on December 07, 2007, 06:32:40 PM
Wow it must be confusing to be Catholic! So, last year or so there was no more purgatory...and now its back again...I just don't get it  ???

There are so many things wrong with this statement.

Last year, secular media falsely claimed that limbo, always theologoumena, was "abolished." It was never official Catholic teaching---see your "toll houses" for a parallel.

Limbo is entirely different than purgatory, which is not a theory but de fide.

There are many resources online to read about purgatory if you would like to clear up the misunderstandings you seem to have. PM me if you would like some suggestions.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: lubeltri on December 07, 2007, 06:38:47 PM
Indulgences.......sigh.......

Ah, sighs of yearning. Don't worry, George, all you have to do is come into communion with the Holy See and you can avail yourself of their graces.  ;)
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: lubeltri on December 07, 2007, 07:04:08 PM
I never got the gist of indulgences either.  I dont know what indulgences have to do with salvation.  Is this not an innovation of the west?  Did not indulgences pay for most of St. Peters Cathedral in Rome?

No, they did not. The abuses of the offering of alms for indulgences did help fund the rebuilding. These abuses amounted to the sale of indulgences, a practice condemned long before the Reformation but sadly pernicious (but not common everywhere) in Luther's day.

But the efficacy of all graces (and sacraments) depends on the heart. How much efficacy do you think an indulgence bought for money might have? It would depend on the person's intention, of course---whether to give alms faithfully or to wrongheadedly (and fruitlessly) "buy" salvation. Unfortunately, the infamous Johann Tetzel, whom Luther heard preach, frequently gave that latter (heretical) impression to get more money.

Indulgences, of course, have nothing to do with salvation. Recent movies like Dogma continue to spread that falsehood. The beneficiaries of indulgences are already saved. Indulgences have to do with the purification (or purgatory, as we call it) upon death and have nothing to do with the judgment or salvation of souls.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: lubeltri on December 07, 2007, 07:35:34 PM
The modern cleaned up definition in short is that purgatory is a final cleansing before one can enter heaven (i.e nothing impure can enter).  Indulgences are ways to work on this ahead of time. 

In RC theology sin has both eternal and temporal consequences.  The eternal are forgiven through Christ's redemptive work.  The latter have to be removed through cleansing (i.e purgatory).  For instance you can be forgiven instantly but the effects of the sin remain through proclivities towards similar passions. 

A partial indulgence is some penitential act (a prayer, work of mercy etc.) that will help to partially wash away existing impurities.

A plenary indulgence is a penitential act that is done in conjunction with going to confession and then receiving communion and will entirely create a "clean slate."

Very concise, Nektarios. Of course, there is a lot of theology behind this.

I would add that plenary indulgences are not as easy as they look. You must be free of all attachment to sin to receive their graces (which, BTW, is exactly the sort of person who would go to heaven without needing a stop in purgatory---no attachment to sin=theosis).
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: pathofsolitude on December 07, 2007, 08:08:06 PM
Thankfully Doctor Martin Luther restored part the Gospel to the Western world. I totally support his Orthodox stand against indulgences, purgatory, satisfactions, etc.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: RPConover on December 07, 2007, 10:37:28 PM
Very concise, Nektarios. Of course, there is a lot of theology behind this.

I would add that plenary indulgences are not as easy as they look. You must be free of all attachment to sin to receive their graces (which, BTW, is exactly the sort of person who would go to heaven without needing a stop in purgatory---no attachment to sin=theosis).

So why would someone so perfected, who as you said is the type who needs no stop in purgatory wish to be granted a plenary indulgence? Or why make the conditions for revieving one so strict that those who might need it the most may likely never recieve it? Is it to inspire them to go after all the partial indulgences they can so they might actually be bothered to do good things?
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: lubeltri on December 07, 2007, 10:57:02 PM
So why would someone so perfected, who as you said is the type who needs no stop in purgatory wish to be granted a plenary indulgence? Or why make the conditions for revieving one so strict that those who might need it the most may likely never recieve it? Is it to inspire them to go after all the partial indulgences they can so they might actually be bothered to do good things?

Purgatory exists for a reason. If you are attached to sin, you will still need purifying. A plenary indulgence will not be efficacious if you are attached to sins. I would clarify, though, that I was perhaps overstating things a bit. You would not need to be fully sanctified to receive a plenary indulgence---that takes a lifetime, and if you have reached that point, you probably won't remember the last time you sinned. I meant more that you are not struggling with frequent sin at the time you are receiving the indulgence. Right now, for example, I believe I would be prepared to receive a plenary indulgence, but there have been times in the past (and there may be in the future) when I wasn't. (The above is my limited understanding---I will have to ask someone more expert than me to get a more confident answer.)

As for the man who is no longer attached to sins, he was before, and the indulgence remits those temporal penalties from the past. Because his heart is free of attachment to sins, the indulgence is efficacious.

Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: lubeltri on December 08, 2007, 12:26:40 AM
On second thought, I don't know. At least, it should be difficult to receive a plenary indulgence.

I think I will ask a knowledgeable priest I know about this.

For what it's worth, here are a couple explanations I found:

For an indulgence to be effective, a person must have a sincere intention to turn away from sin and strive toward unity with God. It is not magic. Indulgences were abused in the past when leaders of the Church sold them. This involved the sin of simony, of selling spiritual gifts. This does not mean that indulgences are not good when practiced correctly.

The freedom from all attachment to sin required for a plenary indulgence is probably the most difficult condition as even attachment to venial sin precludes the possibility of obtaining the indulgence. However, note that the condition is not freedom from all venial sin, but from attachment to sin; that is, that there is no sin which the soul is unwilling to renounce.


http://www.ewtn.com/vexperts/showresult.asp?RecNum=467135&Forums=0&Experts=0&Days=2006&Author=&Keyword=plenary+indulgence&pgnu=1&groupnum=0&record_bookmark=28&ORDER_BY_TXT=ORDER+BY+ReplyDate+DESC&start_at=

The final condition is that you must be free from all attachment to sin, including venial sin.

Because of the extreme difficulty in meeting the final condition, plenary indulgences are rarely obtained. If you attempt to receive a plenary indulgence, but are unable to meet the last condition, a partial indulgence is received instead.


http://www.catholic.com/thisrock/1994/9411fea1sb4.asp

Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: lubeltri on December 08, 2007, 01:01:10 AM
Ah, at last! Answers! I will still ask the priest I know, but I know of a wonderful English priest by the name of Fr. Tim Finigan who devoted a post to this topic in his blog The Hermeneutic of Continuity. Worth a full read!

http://the-hermeneutic-of-continuity.blogspot.com/2006/05/plenary-indulgences-not-impossible.html
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: prodromas on December 08, 2007, 01:10:24 AM
lubertri  i have learned many things from you about the catholic faith and made of see that we are not so different but this consequ of sin does not sit right with of and feel it is to legalistic and sin being like disease solver there problems
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: stanley123 on December 08, 2007, 03:59:14 AM
So why would someone so perfected, who as you said is the type who needs no stop in purgatory wish to be granted a plenary indulgence? Or why make the conditions for revieving one so strict that those who might need it the most may likely never recieve it? Is it to inspire them to go after all the partial indulgences they can so they might actually be bothered to do good things?
I think that these indulgences and good works of ours on earth,  can be applied to some extent to lessen the punishment of those souls already in Purgatory.
For me, it seems like Purgatory is very reasonable and makes a lot of sense. Here's why for example: Suppose that an individual commits some terrible and horrific crimes, causing enormous pain and sorrow to many families, but the day before he is executed, he repents and goes to confession. Now, should that person go directly to heaven, or should he still be required to serve a certain punishment for all the harm he has done on earth.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: stanley123 on December 08, 2007, 03:59:50 AM
qq
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: ozgeorge on December 08, 2007, 05:59:08 AM
I think that these indulgences and good works of ours on earth,  can be applied to some extent to lessen the punishment of those souls already in Purgatory.
For me, it seems like Purgatory is very reasonable and makes a lot of sense. Here's why for example: Suppose that an individual commits some terrible and horrific crimes, causing enormous pain and sorrow to many families, but the day before he is executed, he repents and goes to confession. Now, should that person go directly to heaven, or should he still be required to serve a certain punishment for all the harm he has done on earth.
So, in your understanding, God forgives, but not freely so. The price of God's forgiveness is pain.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Αριστοκλής on December 08, 2007, 08:33:02 AM
I think that these indulgences and good works of ours on earth,  can be applied to some extent to lessen the punishment of those souls already in Purgatory.
Presupposing 'Purgatory' existed.
Quote
For me, it seems like Purgatory is very reasonable and makes a lot of sense. Here's why for example: Suppose that an individual commits some terrible and horrific crimes, causing enormous pain and sorrow to many families, but the day before he is executed, he repents and goes to confession. Now, should that person go directly to heaven, or should he still be required to serve a certain punishment for all the harm he has done on earth.
So, what of his confession? Was it worthless? This makes no sense.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: lubeltri on December 08, 2007, 10:25:58 AM
I think that these indulgences and good works of ours on earth,  can be applied to some extent to lessen the punishment of those souls already in Purgatory.
For me, it seems like Purgatory is very reasonable and makes a lot of sense. Here's why for example: Suppose that an individual commits some terrible and horrific crimes, causing enormous pain and sorrow to many families, but the day before he is executed, he repents and goes to confession. Now, should that person go directly to heaven, or should he still be required to serve a certain punishment for all the harm he has done on earth.

Plus the damage these sins did to him would still be extant. As CS Lewis said, he would need to wash his mouth out before entering Paradise.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: lubeltri on December 08, 2007, 10:33:56 AM
Presupposing 'Purgatory' existed.So, what of his confession? Was it worthless? This makes no sense.

No, the confession saves him.

Purgatory is about making amends, reconciling, losing all attachments. Through that, we are purified and are fit to enter the Kingdom of Heaven. Read Lewis's The Great Divorce for an illustration of this.

Thank God for purgatory, because in the state I am in, I fear that if I entered heaven today, I would get myself tossed out in short order!
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Αριστοκλής on December 08, 2007, 11:02:16 AM
Why would I care to read Lewis? I need no explanation of your innovation.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: lubeltri on December 08, 2007, 11:06:09 AM
Why would I care to read Lewis? I need no explanation of your innovation.

Okay, then. But why did you ask if you wanted no explanation?
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Αριστοκλής on December 08, 2007, 11:09:11 AM
Begging the question, you are. No such 'place' exists.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: lubeltri on December 08, 2007, 11:20:14 AM
Begging the question, you are. No such 'place' exists.

My Church teaches it does. You asked about it, and I tried to explain what we mean by it.

I don't think I ever described it as a "place." The doctrine does not require it be a place. The doctrine is only that a state of purification exists, that the prayers, alms and oblations of the faithful can have an effect on those in that state, and that the Catholic Church calls this state Purgatory. All else is opinion.

Forgive me, but I was under the impression this was more of a discussion than an exchange of apologetics or polemics. Of course I know you believe Purgatory doesn't exist, but that was not the point of the discussion. The discussion was concerned with what we Catholics believe about it. You don't have to agree (and I wouldn't expect you to agree, or even to understand it well, since you are not a Catholic), but bald statements like "It doesn't exist" don't exactly help the discussion, unless a rat-a-tat-tat of "Yes it does!" "No it doesn't!" "Yes it does" "No it doesn't!" is considered a discussion.

I'm off to celebrate that other RC bogeyman, the IC.  ;) God bless.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Αριστοκλής on December 08, 2007, 11:22:33 AM
Then it seems the thread is done.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: minasoliman on December 08, 2007, 02:06:08 PM
So are indulgences pretty much the Catholic way of "burning incense for the forgiveness of the departed faithfuls' sins?"
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: minasoliman on December 08, 2007, 02:15:31 PM
I think that these indulgences and good works of ours on earth,  can be applied to some extent to lessen the punishment of those souls already in Purgatory.
For me, it seems like Purgatory is very reasonable and makes a lot of sense. Here's why for example: Suppose that an individual commits some terrible and horrific crimes, causing enormous pain and sorrow to many families, but the day before he is executed, he repents and goes to confession. Now, should that person go directly to heaven, or should he still be required to serve a certain punishment for all the harm he has done on earth.

For me, and from what I understand in Orthodoxy, the analogy doesn't seem to be perfect.  If Christ checks the heart that the intention is pure repentance, there is no need to serve a certain punishment (in fact, the punishment to "pay the debt" was given for those with intentions similar to that in the "unforgiving servant" in Matthew 18).  This reminds me of the irony given in Luke 7:41-42, where the master forgave two debtors, even though both had grossly unequal debts.  Imagine that murderer who was forgiven, how powerful it is when he joyfully kisses the feet of His Judge with the fragrance of his repentance!

God bless.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Timos on December 08, 2007, 04:09:27 PM
If I still need to go to purgatory to atone for my already forgiven sins....that doesn't make sense. That means that Christ didn't fully save me, @ the Cross 2000 yrs ago, @ my baptism 20 years ago, until I die...Christ already came to forgive and save the whole world as long as they believed and were baptised...That means that Christ's salvation is not complete therefore not true salvation. Umm as for merits and graces for the saints, so...what? - It's piled up in heaven because St. Peter to Mother Theresa and everyone in between has acquired these graces...this seems very heretical to me, escuse me for saying, because I can't get part of this piled up grace from another person's virtuous life. I can ask a saint to pray for me and help me out that way thus giving me that type of grace...In the end it all has to do with the idea that the Pope can "free up" some of this accumulated grace in Heaven to grant to poor souls in purgatory. The whole thing is just messed up- who thought of this crazy concept!
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: stanley123 on December 08, 2007, 04:41:15 PM
So, what of his confession? Was it worthless? This makes no sense.
Well, it is like this. Confession and repentance saves the person from the eternal punishment of hell. But some repentances are lesser than others. So. in many cases, justice requires a certain payback from the imperfectly repentant individual who committed these horrific crimes, before the imperfectly repentant individual is allowed to enter the eternal bliss of heaven. 
Sorry, but to my mind, this is reasonable and makes a lot of sense. Similarly, if someone has not repented of lesser sins, he will not go either to eternal damnation in hell, because the sins are too small, and eternal damnation is too big, nor will he go to heaven, because he still has unforgiven sins. He will go to Purgatory and be cleansed of these small sins before entering heaven. And why do we pray for the dead, except to lessen their possible stay in purgatory. So when we die, we go to heaven, hell or purgatory. That's what makes sense to me.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Αριστοκλής on December 08, 2007, 05:05:28 PM
Hence, if one does not rank sins, this then does seem odd, superfluous, and unnecessary.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Νεκτάριος on December 08, 2007, 06:52:15 PM
Hence, if one does not rank sins, this then does seem odd, superfluous, and unnecessary.

While the Catholic exposition of this adds a very cumbersome legalism to the concept, the same idea does exist in Orthodox ascetic literature.  The negative impact of a some minor sin done once and without much though will be much easier to recover from than a very serious and passionate sin.  i.e someone entering a monastery after committing fornication everyday for twenty years is going to require a greater spiritual transformation to reach dispassion than someone who lost his patience one time or some minor matter. 
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Joab Anias on December 08, 2007, 08:00:59 PM
The whole thing is just messed up- who thought of this crazy concept!

Well Jesus, did. Do you think Jesus was nuts?

Quote
Matt. 5:26,18:34; Luke 12:58-59 – Jesus teaches us, “Come to terms with your opponent or you will be handed over to the judge and thrown into prison. You will not get out until you have paid the last penny.” The word “opponent” (antidiko) is likely a reference to the devil (see the same word for devil in 1 Pet. 5:8) who is an accuser against man (c.f. Job 1.6-12; Zech. 3.1; Rev. 12.10), and God is the judge. If we have not adequately dealt with satan and sin in this life, we will be held in a temporary state called a prison, and we won’t get out until we have satisfied our entire debt to God. This “prison” is purgatory where we will not get out until the last penny is paid.

Matt. 5:48 - Jesus says, "be perfect, even as your heavenly Father is perfect." We are only made perfect through purification, and in Catholic teaching, this purification, if not completed on earth, is continued in a transitional state we call purgatory.

Matt. 12:32 – Jesus says, “And anyone who says a word against the Son of man will be forgiven; but no one who speaks against the Holy Spirit will be forgiven either in this world or in the next.” Jesus thus clearly provides that there is forgiveness after death. The phrase “in the next” (from the Greek “en to mellonti”) generally refers to the afterlife (see, for example, Mark 10.30; Luke 18.30; 20.34-35; Eph. 1.21 for similar language). Forgiveness is not necessary in heaven, and there is no forgiveness in hell. This proves that there is another state after death, and the Church for 2,000 years has called this state purgatory.

Luke 12:47-48 - when the Master comes (at the end of time), some will receive light or heavy beatings but will live. This state is not heaven or hell, because in heaven there are no beatings, and in hell we will no longer live with the Master.

Luke 16:19-31 - in this story, we see that the dead rich man is suffering but still feels compassion for his brothers and wants to warn them of his place of suffering. But there is no suffering in heaven or compassion in hell because compassion is a grace from God and those in hell are deprived from God's graces for all eternity. So where is the rich man? He is in purgatory.

1 Cor. 15:29-30 - Paul mentions people being baptized on behalf of the dead, in the context of atoning for their sins (people are baptized on the dead’s behalf so the dead can be raised). These people cannot be in heaven because they are still with sin, but they also cannot be in hell because their sins can no longer be atoned for. They are in purgatory. These verses directly correspond to 2 Macc. 12:44-45 which also shows specific prayers for the dead, so that they may be forgiven of their sin.

Phil. 2:10 - every knee bends to Jesus, in heaven, on earth, and "under the earth" which is the realm of the righteous dead, or purgatory.

2 Tim. 1:16-18 - Onesiphorus is dead but Paul asks for mercy on him “on that day.” Paul’s use of “that day” demonstrates its eschatological usage (see, for example, Rom. 2.5,16; 1 Cor. 1.8; 3.13; 5.5; 2 Cor. 1.14; Phil. 1.6,10; 2.16; 1 Thess. 5.2,4,5,8; 2 Thess. 2.2,3; 2 Tim. 4.8). Of course, there is no need for mercy in heaven, and there is no mercy given in hell. Where is Onesiphorus? He is in purgatory.

Heb. 12:14 - without holiness no one will see the Lord. We need final sanctification to attain true holiness before God, and this process occurs during our lives and, if not completed during our lives, in the transitional state of purgatory.

Heb. 12:23 - the spirits of just men who died in godliness are "made" perfect. They do not necessarily arrive perfect. They are made perfect after their death. But those in heaven are already perfect, and those in hell can no longer be made perfect. These spirits are in purgatory.

1 Peter 3:19; 4:6 - Jesus preached to the spirits in the "prison." These are the righteous souls being purified for the beatific vision.

Rev. 21:4 - God shall wipe away their tears, and there will be no mourning or pain, but only after the coming of the new heaven and the passing away of the current heaven and earth. Note the elimination of tears and pain only occurs at the end of time. But there is no morning or pain in heaven, and God will not wipe away their tears in hell. These are the souls experiencing purgatory.

Rev. 21:27 - nothing unclean shall enter heaven. The word “unclean” comes from the Greek word “koinon” which refers to a spiritual corruption. Even the propensity to sin is spiritually corrupt, or considered unclean, and must be purified before entering heaven. It is amazing how many Protestants do not want to believe in purgatory. Purgatory exists because of the mercy of God. If there were no purgatory, this would also likely mean no salvation for most people. God is merciful indeed.

Luke 23:43 – many Protestants argue that, because Jesus sent the good thief right to heaven, there can be no purgatory. There are several rebuttals. First, when Jesus uses the word "paradise,” He did not mean heaven. Paradise, from the Hebrew "sheol," meant the realm of the righteous dead. This was the place of the dead who were destined for heaven, but who were captive until the Lord's resurrection. Second, since there was no punctuation in the original manuscript, Jesus’ statement “I say to you today you will be with me in paradise” does not mean there was a comma after the first word “you.” This means Jesus could have said, “I say to you today, you will be with me in paradise” (meaning, Jesus could have emphasized with exclamation his statement was “today” or “now,” and that some time in the future the good thief would go to heaven). Third, even if the thief went straight to heaven, this does not prove there is no purgatory (those who are fully sanctified in this life – perhaps by a bloody and repentant death – could be ready for admission in to heaven).

Gen. 50:10; Num. 20:29; Deut. 34:8 - here are some examples of ritual prayer and penitent mourning for the dead for specific periods of time. The Jewish understanding of these practices was that the prayers freed the souls from their painful state of purification, and expedited their journey to God.

Baruch 3:4 - Baruch asks the Lord to hear the prayers of the dead of Israel. Prayers for the dead are unnecessary in heaven and unnecessary in hell. These dead are in purgatory.

Zech. 9:11 - God, through the blood of His covenant, will set those free from the waterless pit, a spiritual abode of suffering which the Church calls purgatory.

2 Macc. 12:43-45 - the prayers for the dead help free them from sin and help them to the reward of heaven. Those in heaven have no sin, and those in hell can no longer be freed from sin. They are in purgatory. Luther was particularly troubled with these verses because he rejected the age-old teaching of purgatory. As a result, he removed Maccabees from the canon of the Bible.

Purification After Death By Fire

Heb. 12:29 - God is a consuming fire (of love in heaven, of purgation in purgatory, or of suffering and damnation in hell).

1 Cor. 3:10-15 - works are judged after death and tested by fire. Some works are lost, but the person is still saved. Paul is referring to the state of purgation called purgatory. The venial sins (bad works) that were committed are burned up after death, but the person is still brought to salvation. This state after death cannot be heaven (no one with venial sins is present) or hell (there is no forgiveness and salvation).

1 Cor. 3:15 – “if any man’s work is burned up, he will suffer loss, though he himself will be saved, but only as through fire.” The phrase for "suffer loss" in the Greek is "zemiothesetai." The root word is "zemioo" which also refers to punishment. The construction “zemiothesetai” is used in Ex. 21:22 and Prov. 19:19 which refers to punishment (from the Hebrew “anash” meaning “punish” or “penalty”). Hence, this verse proves that there is an expiation of temporal punishment after our death, but the person is still saved. This cannot mean heaven (there is no punishment in heaven) and this cannot mean hell (the possibility of expiation no longer exists and the person is not saved).

1 Cor. 3:15 – further, Paul writes “he himself will be saved, "but only" (or “yet so”) as through fire.” “He will be saved” in the Greek is “sothesetai” (which means eternal salvation). The phrase "but only" (or “yet so”) in the Greek is "houtos" which means "in the same manner." This means that man is both eternally rewarded and eternally saved in the same manner by fire.

1 Cor. 3:13 - when Paul writes about God revealing the quality of each man's work by fire and purifying him, this purification relates to his sins (not just his good works). Protestants, in attempting to disprove the reality of purgatory, argue that Paul was only writing about rewarding good works, and not punishing sins (because punishing and purifying a man from sins would be admitting that there is a purgatory).

1 Cor. 3:17 - but this verse proves that the purgation after death deals with punishing sin. That is, destroying God's temple is a bad work, which is a mortal sin, which leads to death. 1 Cor. 3:14,15,17 - purgatory thus reveals the state of righteousness (v.14), state of venial sin (v.15) and the state of mortal sin (v.17), all of which are judged after death.

1 Peter 1:6-7 - Peter refers to this purgatorial fire to test the fruits of our faith.

Jude 1:23 - the people who are saved are being snatched out of the fire. People are already saved if they are in heaven, and there is no possibility of salvation if they are in hell. These people are being led to heaven from purgatory.

Rev. 3:18-19 - Jesus refers to this fire as what refines into gold those He loves if they repent of their sins. This is in the context of after death because Jesus, speaking from heaven, awards the white garment of salvation after the purgation of fire (both after death).

Dan 12:10 - Daniel refers to this refining by saying many shall purify themselves, make themselves white and be refined.

Wis. 3:5-6 - the dead are disciplined and tested by fire to receive their heavenly reward. This is the fire of purgatory.

Sirach 2:5 - for gold is tested in the fire, and acceptable men in the furnace of humiliation.

Zech. 13:8-9 - God says 2/3 shall perish, and 1/3 shall be left alive, put into the fire, and refined like silver and tested like gold. The ones that perish go to hell, and there is no need for refinement in heaven, so those being refined are in purgatory.

Mal. 3:2-3 - also refers to God's purification of the righteous at their death.



Experience teaches us that there are people who die so suddenly, they have not had the opportunity to confess their sins, but are not guilty of serious "death dealing" sin and separation from God.

The constant faith of the Church affirms the belief in purgatory.


Then we have other writings such as:

"...and that I may be transferred to the place of the just" Acts of Paul and Thecla (A.D. 160).

".... Let him who understands and believes this pray fro Abercius." Inscription of Abercius (A.D. 190).

" Then I understood that he was translated from the place of punishment." The Passion of Perpetua and Felicitias, 2:3-4 (A.D. 202).

and on and on with the likes of Tertullian, Origin, Basil, Ambrose, Jerome, Cyril, Chrysostom, Gregory and Augustine just to name a few.

The teaching Magisterium of the Church also affirms the belief in purgatory.

Council of Lyons II (1274)
We believe ... that the souls, by the purifying compensation are purged after death.
Council of Florence
Repeated the Council of Lyons II.
Council of Trent (1545-1563)
We constantly hold that purgatory exists, and that the souls of the faithful there detained are helped by the prayers of the faithful.
Catechism of the Catholic Church, Section 1031
The Church gives the name Purgatory to this final purification of the elect, which is entirely different from the punishment of the damned. The Church formulated her doctrine of faith on Purgatory especially at the Councils of Florence and Trent. The tradition of the Church, by reference to certain texts of Scripture, speaks of cleansing fire.
As for certain lesser faults, we must believe that, before the Final Judgment, there is a purifying fire. He who is truth says that whoever utters blasphemy against the Holy Spirit will be pardoned neither in this age nor in the age to come. From this sentence we understand that certain offenses can be forgiven in this age, but certain others in the age to come.
Catechism of the Catholic Church, Section 1472
To understand this doctrine and practice of the Church, it is necessary to understand that sin has a double consequence. Grave sin deprives us of communion with God and therefore makes us incapable of eternal life, the privation of which is called the "eternal punishment" of sin. On the other hand every sin, even venial, entails an unhealthy attachment to creatures, which must be purified either here on earth, or after death in the state called Purgatory. This purification frees one from what is called the "temporal punishment" of sin. These two punishments must not be conceived of as a kind of vengeance inflicted by God from without, but as following from the very nature of sin. A conversion which proceeds from a fervent charity can attain the complete purification of the sinner in such a way that no punishment would remain.

So that should show you that every dogma of the Church is based in Holy Scripture.

Peace.



Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: ozgeorge on December 08, 2007, 08:17:43 PM
The constant faith of the Church affirms the belief in purgatory.
The constant faith of the Church affirms prayers for the dead, not purgatory.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Νεκτάριος on December 08, 2007, 08:26:59 PM
There is nothing so charming as copy and past apologetics.  Christodoulos has found his match. 
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Αριστοκλής on December 08, 2007, 08:47:32 PM
Post deleted (as the post to which it was directly responding seems to have "disappeared").
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Joab Anias on December 08, 2007, 09:18:34 PM
The constant faith of the Church affirms prayers for the dead, not purgatory.

Good point there.

In any event I disagree. It may not have been dogmatized until the 13th century but it was believed since the first. But hey who are we to heed scripture and the fathers right? We're an age of intellecutalists who know more than they did.

Seems everytime someone splits off they do so over what they cannot accept as truth and thus end up deficient in the fullness of understanding of revelation. How sad.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Veniamin on December 08, 2007, 09:19:46 PM
In any event I disagree. It may not have been dogmatized until the 13th century but it was believed since the first.

And your evidence for this is...?
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Joab Anias on December 08, 2007, 09:29:46 PM
So are indulgences pretty much the Catholic way of "burning incense for the forgiveness of the departed faithfuls' sins?"

Yes, they are offered up penances of prayer or ascetical acts of piety for many intentions from ones self to others as part of the communion of Saints. They are defined from various sources by the Church with the powers of binding and loosing.

Peace.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Joab Anias on December 08, 2007, 09:35:43 PM
While the Catholic exposition of this adds a very cumbersome legalism to the concept, the same idea does exist in Orthodox ascetic literature.  The negative impact of a some minor sin done once and without much though will be much easier to recover from than a very serious and passionate sin.  i.e someone entering a monastery after committing fornication everyday for twenty years is going to require a greater spiritual transformation to reach dispassion than someone who lost his patience one time or some minor matter. 

It may seem cumbersome but remember its a matter of ascetical devotions that only prove to be efficacious for ones personal relationship with the Lord. The only part of the belief that is to be ascended to as dogmatic is the communion of Saints.

Peace.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Joab Anias on December 08, 2007, 09:37:11 PM
Again, sources, please... not to mention the discussion is about 'purgatory' for the reposed (which your 'observation, if that is what it is does not directly address.)

The source for Purgatory is Jesus. He says it all in scripture. And since when does Orthodoxy not rank sins?
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Joab Anias on December 08, 2007, 09:46:09 PM
And your evidence for this is...?

Looks like you just blew off post 27.

Here this is simpler just for you:

Jesus implies that our sins can be forgiven in the next world.

Mt 12:32
And whoever speaks a word against the Son of Man will be forgiven; but whoever speaks against the holy Spirit will not be forgiven, either in this age or in the age to come.

Scripture from the Greek Septuagint, the Old Testament of Christ, the Evangelists and Paul, and of the councils of Hippo and Carthage, affirm purgatory.

2 Mc 12:42-46
Turning to supplication, they prayed that the sinful deed might be fully blotted out. The noble Judas warned the soldiers to keep themselves free from sin, for they had seen with their own eyes what had happened because of the sin of those who had fallen. He then took up a collection among all his soldiers, amounting to two thousand silver drachmas, which he sent to Jerusalem to provide for an expiatory sacrifice. In doing this he acted in a very excellent and noble way, inasmuch as he had the resurrection of the dead in view; for if he were not expecting the fallen to rise again, it would have been useless and foolish to pray for them in death. But if he did this with a view to the splendid reward that awaits those who had gone to rest in godliness, it was a holy and pious thought. Thus he made atonement for the dead that they might be freed from this sin.

Do you need more evidence than the word of God? If you do I can't help you.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Veniamin on December 08, 2007, 09:50:14 PM
Very cute with your implications that I'm stupid.  About what I expect out of Latins.

Let me put it this way, your evidence supporting the efficacy of prayers for the dead is not evidence supporting purgatory.  You're either a) deliberately using evidence in a misleading manner or b) conflating the two concepts in a poorly reasoned argument.  You tell us which it is.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Joab Anias on December 08, 2007, 09:56:56 PM
Very cute with your implications that I'm stupid.  About what I expect out of Latins.

Let me put it this way, your evidence supporting the efficacy of prayers for the dead is not evidence supporting purgatory.  You're either a) deliberately using evidence in a misleading manner or b) conflating the two concepts in a poorly reasoned argument.  You tell us which it is.

Asking for evidence that has already been provided implys only what is obvious.

I am sorry Scripture is something you don't find as evidence or efficatious.

By the way, I am glad you low expectations of us Latins. We need that.

Thanks again.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Veniamin on December 08, 2007, 10:00:22 PM
I'll make it simple:  Your evidence doesn't show what you are claiming it does.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: ozgeorge on December 08, 2007, 10:13:53 PM
Joab Anias,
I think what Veniamin is saying (and I actually agree with him) is that you keep citing evidence for the Church's prayers for the dead as being evidence for the existence of Purgatory, but this is not necessarily the same.
It's like making a medical diagnosis based on one symptom. The existence of a fever does not tell you whether a person is infected, because there are other causes of fever apart from infection (for example, dehydration, heat stroke etc.)
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Veniamin on December 08, 2007, 10:15:34 PM
Joab Anias,
I think what Veniamin is saying (and I actually agree with him) is that you keep citing evidence for the Church's prayers for the dead as being evidence for the existence of Purgatory, but this is not necessarily the same.

Thank you, that's precisely what I've been saying the whole time.

Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Joab Anias on December 08, 2007, 10:20:08 PM
I'll make it simple:  Your evidence doesn't show what you are claiming it does.

I know it does because I submit to the word of God. You will find out when you get there.

Heb 12:29
For our God is a consuming fire.

1 Cor 3:11-15
For no one can lay a foundation other than the one that is there, namely, Jesus Christ. If anyone builds on this foundation with gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, or straw, the work of each will come to light, for the Day will disclose it. It will be revealed with fire, and the fire (itself) will test the quality of each one's work. If the work stands that someone built upon the foundation, that person will receive a wage. But if someone's work is burned up, that one will suffer loss; the person will be saved, but only as through fire.

You can deny scripture all you like but it won't change God. Purgatory will be efficatious in correcting what we are lacking here so many will still be saved.

Or perhaps there was no point in Jesus telling us to be perfect just as His Father is perfect.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: ozgeorge on December 08, 2007, 10:31:17 PM
Heb 12:29
For our God is a consuming fire.
Yes, He is. In fact, He is a River of Fire. I'm glad you accept the Orthodox Dogma of the Divine Energies. ;)

1 Cor 3:11-15
For no one can lay a foundation other than the one that is there, namely, Jesus Christ. If anyone builds on this foundation with gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, or straw, the work of each will come to light, for the Day will disclose it. It will be revealed with fire, and the fire (itself) will test the quality of each one's work. If the work stands that someone built upon the foundation, that person will receive a wage. But if someone's work is burned up, that one will suffer loss; the person will be saved, but only as through fire.
Do you see the words I have emphasised in your evidence? The divine "fire" which consumes will appear on the Day of Judgement.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Fr. George on December 08, 2007, 10:32:59 PM
1 Cor 3:11-15
For no one can lay a foundation other than the one that is there, namely, Jesus Christ. If anyone builds on this foundation with gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, or straw, the work of each will come to light, for the Day will disclose it. It will be revealed with fire, and the fire (itself) will test the quality of each one's work. If the work stands that someone built upon the foundation, that person will receive a wage. But if someone's work is burned up, that one will suffer loss; the person will be saved, but only as through fire. 

This passage is also interpreted to be referring to life, not death, and to the members of the Church, not to an individual.  I'll quote our Orthodox Study Bible (all emphasis is theirs):

"3:6-17 The Church is an organic whole: (1) it is planted (vv. 6-9), (2) a building (vv. 9-11), (3) a temple (vv. 16, 17).  In vv. 16,17 you is plural and refers to the whole Church.  One, who would break this unity would desecrate a sacred place.

3:9 Fellow workers (Gr. synergoi) is the biblical concept of synergism, shown here by how the Apostles work together with God in carrying out the ministry.  So too, we as God's fellow workers cooperate with Him to do His will.  By this cooperation or synergy with God, we do not mean a working together of equals, or a so-called fifty-fifty arrangement.  Rather we mean that He is the Lord, and we His servants are called to participate obediently in His work.

3:18-20 The wisdom of this world (v. 19) is attractive and reasonable, and on the surface appears to be true.  But such earthly wisdom denies God and leads us away from Him - not to fulfillment, but to death.  True wisdom and life are found only in Christ, in our total abandonment to the love of God and neighbor.

3:21-23 Yours and you here are plural.  They refer not to the individual but to the corporate Church.  The Church possesses the whole, all things, because the Church is the body of Christ - His perfect and glorified humanity - and Christ is God.  Individual opinion in doctrine and private interpretation of Scripture which stand apart from that of the Church, or outside of apostolic tradition, are marks of worldly wisdom."
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Joab Anias on December 08, 2007, 10:37:25 PM
Joab Anias,
I think what Veniamin is saying (and I actually agree with him) is that you keep citing evidence for the Church's prayers for the dead as being evidence for the existence of Purgatory, but this is not necessarily the same.
It's like making a medical diagnosis based on one symptom. The existence of a fever does not tell you whether a person is infected, because there are other causes of fever apart from infection (for example, dehydration, heat stroke etc.)

That's not the only evidence though. Its that evidence that you have no problem with coming to light in the dogma of the communion of saints because it was before the schism but because of the schism, the east dropped out and didn't follow its development with the Holy Spirit guiding the west into the dogma of purgatory. In response what do you have, the doctrine of toll houses that has been denounced by your bishops?

I have never seen one exegesis against purgatory even from protesters. Only denial upon denial in satans ploys to sew confusion. If anyone expects me to believe a denial of what hermeneutics and exegesis proves to me then they must at least back up their denial with some semblance of historical fact or scriptural exegesis. I am still waiting. It will never come. If the greatest protesters of Martin Luther or Calvin couldn't come up with it, then why would you expect me to just deny the fullness of the apostolic faith I understand as cohesive because those who ceased to follow the development of doctrine calls it superfluous or fails to assert the intellectual reasoning to understand it as well. It doesn't wash and its an even weaker argument than I get from sola scipturists.

Peace.

Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Fr. George on December 08, 2007, 10:42:00 PM
Or perhaps there was no point in Jesus telling us to be perfect just as His Father is perfect.

Lol.  Reductio ad absurdum.  Doesn't normally work here - you'd be better off with that line in a sermon or public speech, where people emotionally react to it immediately, rather than on an internet forum where people take time and think about things.

Look, you're really not going to get anywhere trying to prove that all those verses you've quoted and referenced actually point to purgatory - our Orthodox interpretation, fueled by 2000 years of listening to and reading scripture, is that they only refer to the efficacy of prayers on behalf of the dead, and God's ability and willingness to change things before Judgment Day.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Joab Anias on December 08, 2007, 10:43:25 PM
Yes, He is. In fact, He is a River of Fire. I'm glad you accept the Orthodox Dogma of the Divine Energies. ;)

Is that what I am doing? You know, I don't know allot about that doctrine but I don't believe there is anything contrary to the Orthodox Catholic faith by what I know. It seems as a different expression of the same faith to me. Can you site an Orthodox synod that dogmatized that doctrine?

Quote
Do you see the words I have emphasised in your evidence? The divine "fire" which consumes will appear on the Day of Judgement.

Yes, I agree. In regard to purgatory we only claim that it exists and that prayer for the dead is efficacious. As far as I know expiation of sin could be instantaneous in our concept of time in this world. Remember in the world to come time is meaningless.

Peace.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: ozgeorge on December 08, 2007, 10:45:25 PM
More from St. Paul on the Divine Fire which will both consume and save on the Last Day:
And to you who are troubled rest with us, when the Lord Jesus shall be revealed from heaven with his mighty angels, In flaming fire taking vengeance on them that know not God, and that obey not the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ: Who shall be punished with everlasting destruction because of the presence of the Lord, and from the glory of his power (2 Thessalonians 1:7-9)

"Translating 2 Thess 1:7-8 from the Greek literally, St. Paul tells the persecuted Thessalonians that they will "get relief at the revelation of the Lord Jesus coming out from heaven with His powerful angels in flames of fire". Yet this same presence of Jesus causes the ones persecuting them to "…be punished with everlasting destruction BECAUSE OF [Gr. "apo"] the presence of the Lord, and BECAUSE OF his mighty glory" (2 Thess 1:9). Further on Paul writes in 2Thess 2:8 that "the lawless one, whom the Lord Jesus will destroy by the breath [or "spirit"] of his mouth and make ineffective by the fantastic appearance of his presence". So the mere presence of Jesus makes the "lawless one" ineffective, yet gives relief and comfort to the Thessalonians."  Source (http://aggreen.net/beliefs/heaven_hell.html)

 
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Fr. George on December 08, 2007, 10:45:39 PM
That's not the only evidence though. Its that evidence that you have no problem with coming to light in the dogma of the communion of saints because it was before the schism but because of the schism, the east dropped out and didn't follow its development with the Holy Spirit guiding the west into the dogma of purgatory. In response what do you have, the doctrine of toll houses that has been denounced by your bishops?

I have never seen one exegesis against purgatory even from protesters. Only denial upon denial in satans ploys to sew confusion. If anyone expects me to believe a denial of what hermeneutics and exegesis proves to me then they must at least back up their denial with some semblance of historical fact or scriptural exegesis. I am still waiting. It will never come. If the greatest protesters of Martin Luther or Calvin couldn't come up with it, then why would you expect me to just deny the fullness of the apostolic faith I understand as cohesive because those who ceased to follow the development of doctrine calls it superfluous or fails to assert the intellectual reasoning to understand it as well. It doesn't wash and its an even weaker argument than I get from sola scipturists.

Peace. 

You want your proof?  Learn Greek and Russian - cause most of the Orthodox theological writings in existence have not yet been translated.  You've been trying to convince us of Purgatory for centuries and you're hermeneutics and exegesis haven't amounted to much - in most Orthodox circles your methodology in coming up with the specific doctrine of Purgatory is considered more isigesis than exegesis.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Joab Anias on December 08, 2007, 10:49:57 PM
Lol.  Reductio ad absurdum.  Doesn't normally work here - you'd be better off with that line in a sermon or public speech, where people emotionally react to it immediately, rather than on an internet forum where people take time and think about things.

Look, you're really not going to get anywhere trying to prove that all those verses you've quoted and referenced actually point to purgatory - our Orthodox interpretation, fueled by 2000 years of listening to and reading scripture, is that they only refer to the efficacy of prayers on behalf of the dead, and God's ability and willingness to change things before Judgment Day.

I really don't care to prove anything. I am just providing answers asked for and dispell misconceptions. If the askers really didn't want to know why we believe what we do then they shouldn't ask or pretend that there is no evidence. If its a matter of interpretation thats well and good. The fact remains is that it is Dogmatized in the western Chruch and any faithful of good conscience should assend to its belief. Perhaps a day will come when there can be an ecumenical do over of that council but I don't expect to live to see it. Its not necessary though I think the Church is patient.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Fr. George on December 08, 2007, 10:51:53 PM
Enjoy.  I don't normally reference their work, but I don't have any scriptural references at my home... Anyway, it's a decent article:

The Orthodox Response to the Latin Doctrine of Purgatory
Given at the Pseudo-Synod of Ferrara-Florence

http://www.orthodoxinfo.com/death/stmark_purg.aspx

Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Joab Anias on December 08, 2007, 10:55:23 PM
More from St. Paul on the Divine Fire which will both consume and save on the Last Day:
And to you who are troubled rest with us, when the Lord Jesus shall be revealed from heaven with his mighty angels, In flaming fire taking vengeance on them that know not God, and that obey not the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ: Who shall be punished with everlasting destruction because of the presence of the Lord, and from the glory of his power (2 Thessalonians 1:7-9)

"Translating 2 Thess 1:7-8 from the Greek literally, St. Paul tells the persecuted Thessalonians that they will "get relief at the revelation of the Lord Jesus coming out from heaven with His powerful angels in flames of fire". Yet this same presence of Jesus causes the ones persecuting them to "…be punished with everlasting destruction BECAUSE OF [Gr. "apo"] the presence of the Lord, and BECAUSE OF his mighty glory" (2 Thess 1:9). Further on Paul writes in 2Thess 2:8 that "the lawless one, whom the Lord Jesus will destroy by the breath [or "spirit"] of his mouth and make ineffective by the fantastic appearance of his presence". So the mere presence of Jesus makes the "lawless one" ineffective, yet gives relief and comfort to the Thessalonians."  Source (http://aggreen.net/beliefs/heaven_hell.html)

 

Not sure I am getting your point here. Purgatory isn't a punishment. Its an expiation of the saved. There is no condemnation from there. They know the joy of being in heaven once expiated for one cannot unite to perfection until he is perfected himself though by no fault of his own may have failed to achieve such perfection in this life. You see purgatory is mercy.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Fr. George on December 08, 2007, 10:59:32 PM
I really don't care to prove anything.

I'm calling you on this one... Your first post was a drive-by attempt into wowing someone into believing in purgatory.  You were trying to prove something.

When people have been asking you for proof, here's what they wanted: authoritative sources of the Catholic church that tie the specific scriptural passages you referenced to the doctrine of purgatory.  See, you Church, like ours, believes that people aren't to interpret scripture on their own, but instead trust in the wisdom of the Church.  When we say "look, these passages don't mean what you've implied" after you posted them, we're saying "prove it."

There's no hate here (at least not on my part; and knowing the others who have posted here, probably not on their parts, either), just a desire to see more than just a "drive-by."
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Fr. George on December 08, 2007, 11:01:02 PM
Not sure I am getting your point here. Purgatory isn't a punishment. Its an expiation of the saved. There is no condemnation from there. They know the joy of being in heaven once expiated for one cannot unite to perfection until he is perfected himself though by no fault of his own may have failed to achieve such perfection in this life. You see purgatory is mercy.

And essentially this line of thinking fails with the Orthodox because (a) we have a completely different belief on the effect of sin, and (b) by the criteria listed only the Virgin Mary would have skipped Purgatory... So what's the point?
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Joab Anias on December 08, 2007, 11:23:20 PM
Enjoy.  I don't normally reference their work, but I don't have any scriptural references at my home... Anyway, it's a decent article:

The Orthodox Response to the Latin Doctrine of Purgatory
Given at the Pseudo-Synod of Ferrara-Florence

http://www.orthodoxinfo.com/death/stmark_purg.aspx



So what matters more, the individual arguments or the conciliarity of the council and obedience to that final declaration?

I cannot come to believe that a dogma is reversible because not all agreed or understood with a like mind.

Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Joab Anias on December 08, 2007, 11:30:56 PM
And essentially this line of thinking fails with the Orthodox because;

(a) we have a completely different belief on the effect of sin,

I don't find that at all.

Quote
(b) by the criteria listed only the Virgin Mary would have skipped Purgatory... So what's the point?

Untrue. That would negate the whole canonization process. Were called to prefection by Jesus. We must trust in Jesus. The point is to expiate what cannot be permitted into heaven. Its mercy that provides a way. Its not condemnation or even punishment its mercy.

By the way thanks for taking the time to look up the source.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Fr. George on December 08, 2007, 11:35:06 PM
So what matters more, the individual arguments or the conciliarity of the council and obedience to that final declaration?

I cannot come to believe that a dogma is reversible because not all agreed or understood with a like mind. 

I, as an Orthodox Christian, respect your decision to stay with the pronouncement of your council.  Of course, "not understood with a like mind" is an understatement when those who don't read with like mind are the second largest Church in the world (next to your own), and are the only other Church who can document Apostolic Continuity.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Fr. George on December 08, 2007, 11:38:11 PM
I don't find that at all. 

Well, our differing views of sin lead are reflected in places other than Purgatory, such as our different definitions of the effects of the sin of Adam and Eve, our different approaches to the conception of the Virgin Mary (by the way - Happy Feastday!), and our approach to sin (mortal/venial distinctions, etc.).
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Joab Anias on December 08, 2007, 11:50:40 PM
Well, our differing views of sin lead are reflected in places other than Purgatory, such as our different definitions of the effects of the sin of Adam and Eve, our different approaches to the conception of the Virgin Mary (by the way - Happy Feastday!), and our approach to sin (mortal/venial distinctions, etc.).

Yes I know. I see the differences mostly as misconceptions.

Thanks. You know I went to the solemnity today and renewed my consecration to Mary on its 10 year anniversary and there wasn't even so much as the mention of Mary in the whole Mass. I am still scratching my head over that one. Just this diocese I guess.

Peace.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Joab Anias on December 08, 2007, 11:52:03 PM
I, as an Orthodox Christian, respect your decision to stay with the pronouncement of your council.  Of course, "not understood with a like mind" is an understatement when those who don't read with like mind are the second largest Church in the world (next to your own), and are the only other Church who can document Apostolic Continuity.

Let us pray they get it back together as a sign for the world.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: stanley123 on December 08, 2007, 11:57:44 PM
Hence, if one does not rank sins, this then does seem odd, superfluous, and unnecessary.
I wanted to try to understand this notion of not ranking sins. It is a difficult one for me.  I really don’t understand it at all.  Of course, in the end, everything depends on God and how he will see and judge the situation. But, to my mind, imperfect as it is,  it seems entirely  reasonable that there are lesser and greater sins, some deserving of more punishment than others. Some of the horrific crimes we have been reading about in the current news, with innocent people being killed and families lives ruined, seem to be to be very seriously wrong and, if we read Matthew 25:41 or 13:42, this would possibly be deserving of eternal punishment. However, there are some sins that are much lesser. For example, there is the Commandment: “Thou shalt not steal.” This is one of the ten Commandments. Suppose then that it is a beautiful sunny day, and you are out in a beautiful park, walking with your wife or girlfriend. And as you are walking you see a sign reading:”Do not pick the flowers.” However, the wonderful flowery smell hits your nostrils and you are overcome with joy and happiness at the sight and smell of the beautiful flowers. So you pick one and place it in the buttonhole of your wife or girlfriend. Now you have committed a sin against both the commandment Thou shalt not steal and against the civil law of the park rules.  But, I don’t see how anyone can deny that this sin of picking a flower is ranked much lower, and deserving of much less punishment, than that of a serial killer.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Ian Lazarus on December 09, 2007, 12:05:18 AM
Well, ranking of sins and dividing them up kind of puts a "not so bad: feel to it.  That's not the case.  Sin, no matter the "degree" we believe, all mar the soul, all stain the baptismal garment, and all need to be cleansed, because all sin leads to separation from the will of God.  A thief and a murderer don't seem much the same, but both do something to stain their souls, and in the end, both are forgiven if they wash themselves in the tears of true repentance, and fight to make sure the stain does not re appear.  It doesen't matter if it's a pebble or a boulder that causes you to fall.  Both are going to get you hurt.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: RPConover on December 09, 2007, 03:49:36 AM
Is that what I am doing? You know, I don't know allot about that doctrine but I don't believe there is anything contrary to the Orthodox Catholic faith by what I know. It seems as a different expression of the same faith to me. Can you site an Orthodox synod that dogmatized that doctrine?

Yes, I agree. In regard to purgatory we only claim that it exists and that prayer for the dead is efficacious. As far as I know expiation of sin could be instantaneous in our concept of time in this world. Remember in the world to come time is meaningless.

Peace.

Since time is meaningless in the world to come, who cares if you get half-off your time in purgatory?
Oh, wait- because that would imply that purgatory is a place where you SPEND time, and may get incriments of time knocked off for good behaviour... what the Roman catholic Church USED to teach! ;)
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Joab Anias on December 09, 2007, 03:53:54 AM
Since time is meaningless in the world to come, who cares if you get half-off your time in purgatory?

We care because we believe in the communion of Saints both here and beyond. Remember those undergoing expiation are part of that body.

Peace.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Joab Anias on December 09, 2007, 04:02:12 AM
Well, ranking of sins and dividing them up kind of puts a "not so bad: feel to it.  That's not the case.  Sin, no matter the "degree" we believe, all mar the soul, all stain the baptismal garment, and all need to be cleansed, because all sin leads to separation from the will of God.  A thief and a murderer don't seem much the same, but both do something to stain their souls, and in the end, both are forgiven if they wash themselves in the tears of true repentance, and fight to make sure the stain does not re appear.  It doesen't matter if it's a pebble or a boulder that causes you to fall.  Both are going to get you hurt.

That is true and that "not so bad feel" as you put it is possible for a malformed conscience. The scripture though definitely defines certain sins if unrepented of resulting in definite separation from God. The point is to avoid those, not lessen the effects of other sins which if also unrepented of will snow ball. There is also the opposite effect of scrupulosity that can steal the abundance of life the Lord grants us. There is a balanced view here and not one of denying the harm of any sin.

Peace.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: RPConover on December 09, 2007, 04:12:27 AM
We care because we believe in the communion of Saints both here and beyond. Remember those undergoing expiation are part of that body.

Peace.

No- the idea that "time is meaningless" implies that one won't notice the difference between a day and a thousand days. Time doesn't exist. If time doesn't exist then purification is one single experience, with no concept of duration. What then does it matter- time not being of importence or being outside of time; the non-existant concept of time being reduced? That has nothing to do with the comunion of saints, it has to do with the concept of purification as a "place" or "state" having a duration of "time" than can be lessened, whether by the prayers of the Saints or God himself of anything else.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Joab Anias on December 09, 2007, 12:22:05 PM
No- the idea that "time is meaningless" implies that one won't notice the difference between a day and a thousand days. Time doesn't exist. If time doesn't exist then purification is one single experience, with no concept of duration. What then does it matter- time not being of importence or being outside of time; the non-existant concept of time being reduced? That has nothing to do with the comunion of saints, it has to do with the concept of purification as a "place" or "state" having a duration of "time" than can be lessened, whether by the prayers of the Saints or God himself of anything else.

It does have to do with the communion of saints. The "state" of expiation can receive from God the benefit of our prayers to God because God says so which the Church has always believed. This is why Mass was offered at gravesides and inscriptions on tombs in the catacombs request prayer for the dead.

Its not so far a stretch from intercession really if you think about it. You do believe in intercession don't you? You do pray for the dead too right? You just view whats going on after death as something different correct? Do you not pray for that intention just the same, even the deliverance of souls from hell where scripture says there is no return? If just because the concept of time is different do you stop praying for that intention? If you can believe people can be delivered from hell which is contrary to scripture then why would you have such a problem with the Catholic dogma of Purgatory?

Nothing is impossible for God, just as He can choose to heal a sick person in a instant He can deliver the justified who is completing sanctification by expiation in an instant should He also so choose. This should answer your questions as to where people go after they die.  Eschatology has already been dogmatically defined and bound and loosed.

Whats the moral of the story? Faith, Hope, Love and Prayer are important.

Peace.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: lubeltri on December 09, 2007, 12:42:50 PM
Very cute with your implications that I'm stupid.  About what I expect out of Latins.

Excuse me? Don't expect to be taken seriously if you make insulting comments like that. But then, you couldn't care less about what we "Latins" think, eh?
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: lubeltri on December 09, 2007, 12:52:25 PM
You want your proof?  Learn Greek and Russian - cause most of the Orthodox theological writings in existence have not yet been translated.  You've been trying to convince us of Purgatory for centuries and you're hermeneutics and exegesis haven't amounted to much - in most Orthodox circles your methodology in coming up with the specific doctrine of Purgatory is considered more isigesis than exegesis.

Granted you EO have not accepted the doctrine (and I wouldn't expect it, since it was not clarified until after the Schism), but you do have to admit, at least, that much of the EO animus towards Purgatory has not been as much against the doctrine as defined but against much theological speculation on it and many popular depictions of it? The basic Purgatory as defined in the Catechism is not so sensational---even an Ulsterman like CS Lewis could believe it.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: lubeltri on December 09, 2007, 01:21:25 PM
Yes I know. I see the differences mostly as misconceptions.

Thanks. You know I went to the solemnity today and renewed my consecration to Mary on its 10 year anniversary and there wasn't even so much as the mention of Mary in the whole Mass. I am still scratching my head over that one. Just this diocese I guess.

Peace.

Wow, how did that happen? She is all over the place in the texts and prayers of the IC Mass.

Did you go to a Mass later in the afternoon, say, 4 or 5pm? If you that, that was a vigil Mass for today, the Second Sunday of Advent. The latest I've seen an IC Mass is noon.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Fr. George on December 09, 2007, 01:22:59 PM
Granted you EO have not accepted the doctrine (and I wouldn't expect it, since it was not clarified until after the Schism), but you do have to admit, at least, that much of the EO animus towards Purgatory has not been as much against the doctrine as defined but against much theological speculation on it and many popular depictions of it? The basic Purgatory as defined in the Catechism is not so sensational---even an Ulsterman like CS Lewis could believe it.

That is true to a point, that much of the debate from our end has been directed at the extended ideas (whether misconceptions or not) that have grown off the root.  It is a fairly simple doctrine (which y'all must be given credit for - sometimes the RC Church has been a bit too overzealous in their definitions, which can lead to more problems that what were being combated in the first place).
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Fr. George on December 09, 2007, 01:24:21 PM
Wow, how did that happen? She is all over the place in the texts and prayers of the IC Mass.

Did you go to a Mass later in the afternoon, say, 4 or 5pm? If you that, that was a vigil Mass for today, the Second Sunday of Advent. The latest I've seen an IC Mass is noon.

Or they were following the Orthodox calendar which celebrates her conception today the 9th, which is 9 months - 1 day (near perfection).  Hers is parallel to the period for John the Baptist (9 months + 1 day - near perfection).
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: lubeltri on December 09, 2007, 01:27:38 PM
Since time is meaningless in the world to come, who cares if you get half-off your time in purgatory?
Oh, wait- because that would imply that purgatory is a place where you SPEND time, and may get incriments of time knocked off for good behaviour... what the Roman catholic Church USED to teach! ;)

Wow, RP. Are you being facetious here? The idea of "time off" in Purgatory as a teaching of the Church is a myth. The "time" referred to how many days you would have to do penance on Earth for a certain sin (remember the lengthy penances of the primitive Church). I didn't think anybody here still believed that myth.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: RPConover on December 09, 2007, 02:47:56 PM
Wow, RP. Are you being facetious here? The idea of "time off" in Purgatory as a teaching of the Church is a myth. The "time" referred to how many days you would have to do penance on Earth for a certain sin (remember the lengthy penances of the primitive Church). I didn't think anybody here still believed that myth.

No, I understand the issue of days perfectly well. I'm talking about an indulgence lessening punishment, or purgation, or cleansing or whatever... my cute way of describing it was time off... unless there's any other way to understand the lessening of one's "cleansing", a duration of time in the experience is what I assue is being remitted.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: RPConover on December 09, 2007, 02:53:52 PM
Eschatology has already been dogmatically defined and bound and loosed.

Peace.

it's been bound and loosed? I don't get it.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: lubeltri on December 09, 2007, 06:36:12 PM
No, I understand the issue of days perfectly well. I'm talking about an indulgence lessening punishment, or purgation, or cleansing or whatever... my cute way of describing it was time off... unless there's any other way to understand the lessening of one's "cleansing", a duration of time in the experience is what I assue is being remitted.

It's not really about getting off scott-free, it's more a matter of graces being made available to them that assist with the purifying process, allowing them to more easily relinquish the attachments that keep them from being totally one with Christ and pure.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Ian Lazarus on December 09, 2007, 08:20:13 PM
Quote
There is a balanced view here and not one of denying the harm of any sin.

Agreed.  Both views serve their porpose.   However, It is the focus on one and the non recognition fo the other that becomes the problem.   An example of this is the focus on either the Crucifixion or the Resurrection and hardly mentioning the other.  They are meant to conicide with eachother, and not to be separated. 

Pazi 
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: JoeS on December 09, 2007, 10:27:10 PM

Indulgences, of course, have nothing to do with salvation. Recent movies like Dogma continue to spread that falsehood. The beneficiaries of indulgences are already saved. Indulgences have to do with the purification (or purgatory, as we call it) upon death and have nothing to do with the judgment or salvation of souls.

To us Orthodox it is just another western invention.

Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: JoeS on December 09, 2007, 10:28:49 PM
It's not really about getting off scott-free, it's more a matter of graces being made available to them that assist with the purifying process, allowing them to more easily relinquish the attachments that keep them from being totally one with Christ and pure.

So are you stating you believe in created Grace?
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: lubeltri on December 09, 2007, 10:52:02 PM
To us Orthodox it is just another western invention.

Yes, I'm well acquainted with that fact, though thank you for bringing it up.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: minasoliman on December 10, 2007, 12:22:29 AM
What I understand about Purgatory from Roman Catholics is that it could mean anything.  Many Orthodox believe that some can be purged from the fire of Hades.  All Roman Catholics have to do is mold the belief of Purgatory into this Orthodox belief and voila!  You have the "same belief."  There are other beliefs of Purgatory obviously, but it seems that the official Roman Catholic belief of purgatory is "some sort of unknown state at an unknown time of some unknown Divine fire purging us to be cleansed before we are in the comforts of Paradise."

As for indulgences, it seems to me to be an over-description of the priestly power to loose and bind for the person and for the departed's sins.

Now, I only wanted this to be a discussion without the "You're wrong, I'm right" type of discussion or "It was believed since the beginning of the Church."  We already know what we think in our minds.  The point of this thread is to offer us some proof and discussion and rebuttals.  So far, I've only seen a rebuttal by the Orthodox on certain verses offered by Catholics that the Catholic replied with something along the likes of "I'm not going to give up the Apostolic faith with your beliefs."  Come on people.  We know we can be more scholarly than that.

God bless.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Joab Anias on December 10, 2007, 03:43:20 PM
Wow, how did that happen? She is all over the place in the texts and prayers of the IC Mass.

Did you go to a Mass later in the afternoon, say, 4 or 5pm? If you that, that was a vigil Mass for today, the Second Sunday of Advent. The latest I've seen an IC Mass is noon.

Exactly what happened. I figured that out later on.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: ignatius on December 26, 2007, 11:56:44 AM
Merged 'Someone Help me with Indulgences with kindness please...' with previous post on Indulgences.

Please remain charitable.  It is a valid issue that many RCs have trouble with when exploring/converting to Orthodoxy.  So no drive-by posts.

-- Friul


Can someone speak to me about Indulgence with much kindness and patience please.

Remember, I'm coming into Orthodoxy from Roman Catholicism.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Entscheidungsproblem on December 26, 2007, 12:22:32 PM
What exactly would you like to discuss about it?   :)
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: ignatius on December 26, 2007, 12:47:19 PM
What exactly would you like to discuss about it?   :)

Well, I guess I was looking for a very kind way of understanding the Orthodox teaching on binding and loosing and how it functions in the Orthodox Church. How does grace repair the damage wrought by sin? In the West, this would be addressed by Purgatory and penance unless the Church extends the grace of the Saints to those asking her to loose their sins from them out of mercy or at least the temporal damage those sins cause.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: stanley123 on December 26, 2007, 07:19:54 PM
Well, I guess I was looking for a very kind way of understanding the Orthodox teaching on binding and loosing and how it functions in the Orthodox Church. How does grace repair the damage wrought by sin? In the West, this would be addressed by Purgatory and penance unless the Church extends the grace of the Saints to those asking her to loose their sins from them out of mercy or at least the temporal damage those sins cause.
I am also interested in this question. What would be the Orthodox teaching on what happens when a serious sin is forgiven by confession, but perhaps the repentance of the sinner is not as perfect as it should be, considering the seriousness of the sin. Would there not be some temporal damage left for that person to work on, and how would this be done? I think that the Orthodox do not believe in Purgatory, but Catholics do.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: prodromas on December 26, 2007, 07:30:28 PM
"Temporal damage" I believe (please weigh in on this if I am horrendously wrong) in Orthodoxy is seen as scars (going with the illness analogy of sin) and that although we are truly healed through Christ the wounds are still there and can be reopened in a short time if the scar is disturbed. (this is the way I have always thought about it)
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Entscheidungsproblem on December 26, 2007, 08:10:33 PM
Here is part of a lecture on purgatory (and in turn, atonement, sin, etc) off a Coptic website.  I hope this answers a little.  The language is not too harsh in the article, but obviously, it is in opposition of purgatory, indulgences, etc.  I am busy for a bit, so I cannot full write a response, but hopefully later on I can.

Quote
1. Purgatory is against the doctrine of Atonement and Redemption

Roman Catholics believe that purgatory is a place where "we atone for our sins" while atonement is the work of our Lord Jesus Christ alone. The Basis of the doctrine of Atonement and Redemption is that man is incapable of paying for the Divine Justice no matter how much he does, he suffers, or is punished.

The Holy Bible says,

  • "Being justified freely by His grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus, whom God set forth as a propitiation by His blood, through faith, to demonstrate His righteousness, because in His forbearance God had passed over the sins that were previously committed" (Rom 3:24-25)
  • "If anyone sins, we have an Advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous. And He Himself is the propitiation for our sins, and not for ours only but also for the whole world." (1 Jn 2:1-2)
  • "In this is love, not that we loved God, but that He loved us and sent His Son to be the propitiation for our sins." (1 Jn 4:10)

2. Purgatory is against the doctrine of Salvation

Salvation is only by blood and only the blood of Christ. The blood of Christ is the only purge. "The blood of Jesus Christ His Son cleanses us from all sin." (1 Jn 1:7). 'All sin' refers to every kind of sin mentioned by the Catholics the mortal, the venial or any other. The only condition is repentance "confess our sins" "walk in the light" (1 Jn 1:7,9). St Paul says, "But with His own blood He entered the Most Holy Place once for all, having obtained eternal redemption" (Heb 9:12). Purgatory is an insult to the work of the Cross for we say that on the Cross appeared the Divine Love "For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son" (Jn 3:16) How would that love agree with the pain of purgatory for forgiven sins and unintentional sins?

To believe in the purgatory is to believe of a partial salvation as if Christ came to save us from the shame of sin not from its penalty.

3. Purgatory is against the sacrament of repentance

Repentance blots sin, God forgives it and does not remember it.

  • Repent therefore and be converted, that your sins may be blotted out. (Acts 3:19)
  • I have blotted out, like a thick cloud, your transgressions, and like a cloud, your sins. (Isa 44:22)
  • And you, being dead in your trespasses and the uncircumcision of your flesh, He has made alive together with Him, having forgiven you all trespasses, having wiped out the handwriting of requirements that was against us, nailed to the cross. (Col 2:13,14).
  • I, even I, am He Who blots out transgressions for My own sake and I will not remember your sins. (Isa 43:25).

Source (http://www.suscopts.org/literature/literature.php?subaction=showfull&id=1084916893&archive=&start_from=&ucat=3&)
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: stanley123 on December 26, 2007, 08:39:21 PM
Here is part of a lecture on purgatory (and in turn, atonement, sin, etc) off a Coptic website.  I hope this answers a little.  The language is not too harsh in the article, but obviously, it is in opposition of purgatory, indulgences, etc.  I am busy for a bit, so I cannot full write a response, but hopefully later on I can.

Source (http://www.suscopts.org/literature/literature.php?subaction=showfull&id=1084916893&archive=&start_from=&ucat=3&)
Well, I agree that *perfect* repentance blocks sin, but the problem that I am referring to  is that with some of us, the repentance may not be perfect, especially considering the severity of some sins. Further, another problem bothering me  is with small sins, that may not be forgiven at the time of death, and so Purgatory makes sense to me.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: stashko on December 26, 2007, 09:42:12 PM
My Church teaches it does. You asked about it, and I tried to explain what we mean by it.

I don't think I ever described it as a "place." The doctrine does not require it be a place. The doctrine is only that a state of purification exists, that the prayers, alms and oblations of the faithful can have an effect on those in that state, and that the Catholic Church calls this state Purgatory. All else is opinion.

Forgive me, but I was under the impression this was more of a discussion than an exchange of apologetics or polemics. Of course I know you believe Purgatory doesn't exist, but that was not the point of the discussion. The discussion was concerned with what we Catholics believe about it. You don't have to agree (and I wouldn't expect you to agree, or even to understand it well, since you are not a Catholic), but bald statements like "It doesn't exist" don't exactly help the discussion, unless a rat-a-tat-tat of "Yes it does!" "No it doesn't!" "Yes it does" "No it doesn't!" is considered a discussion.

I'm off to celebrate that other RC bogeyman, the IC.  ;) God bless.

Peace;
Purgitory and indulgences from iv read here and on the catholic boards is confusing to catholic let alone to the orthodox faithful ,,,Sound like a roadblock to  the straight and narrow path to salvation ,,i think it's silly and not necessary...life it self is confusing enough ,,,im curious why the church R.C. dosn't really explain what it really means by these and how one can really get one if it truly exists acording to there belief ...so the faithful catholics know for a fact with out trying guess if they got one or not....stashko........(http://smileys.smileycentral.com/cat/4/4_12_12.gif)
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Entscheidungsproblem on December 26, 2007, 09:44:26 PM
Well, I agree that *perfect* repentance blocks sin, but the problem that I am referring to  is that with some of us, the repentance may not be perfect, especially considering the severity of some sins. Further, another problem bothering me  is with small sins, that may not be forgiven at the time of death, and so Purgatory makes sense to me.

I've actually just started reading The Soul After Death by Blessed Seraphim Rose, so I cannot comment on everything yet, but I was able to find an excerpt on the internet which will save me some typing.   :P

"In the Orthodox doctrine, on the other hand, which St. Mark teaches, the faithful who have died with small sins unconfessed, or who have not brought forth fruits of repentance for sins they have confessed, are cleansed of these sins either in the trial of death itself with its fear, or after death, when they are confined (but not permanently) in hell, by the prayers and Liturgies of the Church and good deeds performed for them by the faithful. Even sinners destined for eternal torment can be given a certain relief from their torment in hell by these means also. There is no fire tormenting sinners now, however, either in hell (for the eternal fire will begin to torment them only after the Last Judgment), or much less in any third place like "purgatory"; all visions of fire which are seen by men are as it were images or prophecies of what will be in the future age. All forgiveness of sins after death comes solely from the goodness of God, which extends even to those in hell, with the cooperation of the prayers of men, and no "payment" or "satisfaction" is due for sins which have been forgiven."

Source, at bottom (http://www.orthodoxinfo.com/death/stmark_purg.aspx)
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: stanley123 on December 27, 2007, 12:46:01 AM
"In the Orthodox doctrine, on the other hand, which St. Mark teaches, the faithful who have died with small sins unconfessed, or who have not brought forth fruits of repentance for sins they have confessed, are cleansed of these sins either in the trial of death itself with its fear, or after death, when they are confined (but not permanently) in hell, by the prayers and Liturgies of the Church and good deeds performed for them by the faithful. ...
Well, being cleansed of small (venial?) sins or imperfect repentance for confessed larger sins, by being confined *temporarily* in hell sounds like Purgatory to me. And being cleansed while there by the prayers and Liturgies of the Church and good deeds performed for them by the faithful sounds to me to be pretty close to almost the same as the Catholic teaching on the value of prayer and such for the suffering souls in Purgatory?
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Young Believer on December 27, 2007, 12:51:08 AM
According to the RCC, a plenary indulgence requires, among other things, a lack of all attachment to sin.  Is this an absolute requirement?  If so, where in the Fathers or the Bible is this demonstrated, and if not, why doesn't the Pope lift this restriction so that more people can achieve it?

As it is, it sounds to me to be an invitation to spiritual delusion.  For who can know whether or no he is free from attachment to sin?  "I can achieve this or that plenary indulgence, not only for myself but for those in purgatory.  I can make an 'act of heroic virtue' and all my good works will apply to the Poor Souls in purgatory."  O Man, how can you think you can save anyone, when you cannot even save yourself?  Not even the holiest Athonite monk would presume to say to themselves "I am free from attachment to sin!"
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: ialmisry on December 27, 2007, 01:00:24 AM
On a review of the movie Ostrov, I posted some remarks apropos to this topic.

http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,12667.0.html

Father Anatoly spends a life repenting of a crime he didn't commit, and brings many to God in the process.

No merit involved, just as St. Seraphim said, "save yourself, and a thousand around you are saved."
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Νεκτάριος on December 27, 2007, 02:33:49 AM
I've actually just started reading The Soul After Death by Blessed Seraphim Rose, so I cannot comment on everything yet, but I was able to find an excerpt on the internet which will save me some typing.   :P

"In the Orthodox doctrine, on the other hand, which St. Mark teaches, the faithful who have died with small sins unconfessed, or who have not brought forth fruits of repentance for sins they have confessed, are cleansed of these sins either in the trial of death itself with its fear, or after death, when they are confined (but not permanently) in hell, by the prayers and Liturgies of the Church and good deeds performed for them by the faithful. Even sinners destined for eternal torment can be given a certain relief from their torment in hell by these means also. There is no fire tormenting sinners now, however, either in hell (for the eternal fire will begin to torment them only after the Last Judgment), or much less in any third place like "purgatory"; all visions of fire which are seen by men are as it were images or prophecies of what will be in the future age. All forgiveness of sins after death comes solely from the goodness of God, which extends even to those in hell, with the cooperation of the prayers of men, and no "payment" or "satisfaction" is due for sins which have been forgiven."

Source, at bottom (http://www.orthodoxinfo.com/death/stmark_purg.aspx)

I see.  So they are cleansed - dare I say purged... dare I say purgatory...   
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Entscheidungsproblem on December 27, 2007, 04:33:47 AM
I see.  So they are cleansed - dare I say purged... dare I say purgatory...   

Well, that he sums up quite well in the paragraph previous to that.

"This teaching strikes the Orthodox reader (as indeed it struck St. Mark) as one of an entirely too 'literalistic' and 'legalistic' character. The Latins by this time had come to regard heaven and hell as somehow 'finished' and 'absolute,' and those in them as already possessing the fullness of the state they will have after the Last Judgment; thus, there is no need to pray for those in heaven (whose lot is already perfect) or those in hell (for they can never be delivered or cleansed from sin). But since many of the faithful die in a 'middle' state—not perfect enough for heaven, but not evil enough for hell—the logic of the Latin arguments required a third place of cleansing ('purgatory'), where even those whose sins had already been forgiven had to be punished or give 'satisfaction' for their sins before being sufficiently cleansed to enter heaven. These legalistic arguments of a purely human 'justice' (which actually deny God's supreme goodness and love of mankind) the Latins proceeded to support by literalistic interpretations of certain Patristic texts and various visions; almost all of these interpretations are quite contrived and arbitrary, because not even the ancient Latin Fathers spoke of such a place as 'purgatory,' but only of the 'cleansing' from sins after death, which some of them referred to (probably allegorically) as by 'fire.'"

But, I'm hardly an authority on any of this.  I'm still a catechumen and learning myself.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Riddikulus on December 27, 2007, 07:23:04 AM
From Inner Kingdom, by Bishop Kallistos Ware; (page 205)

"It is true that Orthodox theologians usually express reservations about the doctrine of purgatory as developed in medieval and post-medieval Roman Catholic teaching; but at the same time most of the allow for some sort of purging or purification after death. See my book (published un the name Timothy Ware), Eustratios Argenti: A Study of the Greek Church Under Turkish Rule (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1964), 1390160. Elsewhere I have suggested that the Catholic and Orthodox views on the "middle state" after death are leass sharply opposed than appears at first. See my article "One Body in Christ: Death and Communion of Saints," Sobonost 3:2 (1981), 179-91.

There is also an incomplete entry on Purgatory at Wikipedia. While Wikipedia might not be the most reliable source, it does give some references that might help for further investigation on this topic.

http://orthodoxwiki.org/Purgatory

God be with us all.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Athanasios on December 27, 2007, 01:49:34 PM
Hello,

Father Corapi describes it this way: Think of a piece of wood, a 2X4. Drive a nail into it - that's sin. Go to Confession and the nail is removed, that is the eternal guilt associated with that sin is removed. But what is left - a big hole (size varies according to the sin). That hole is what is called temporal punishment due to sin. Indulgences, penances, and Purgatory are means of healing those holes in us, so that we may be presented to God as a whole piece of wood.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Entscheidungsproblem on December 27, 2007, 02:34:21 PM
Father John Corapi always did have interesting analogies.   :)
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Athanasios on December 27, 2007, 02:50:15 PM
Hello,

Father John Corapi always did have interesting analogies.   :)

Yup, I hope he returns to preaching soon.  :)
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: minasoliman on December 27, 2007, 10:04:12 PM
To me, I don't the problem is in Purgatory, but the problem lies more so in trying to understand the idea of indulgences.  Is there a practice in the Orthodox Church (or the ancient Church) that one can use to create some sort of parallel with the idea of indulgences?
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: JoeS on December 28, 2007, 11:01:57 AM
Hello,

Father Corapi describes it this way: Think of a piece of wood, a 2X4. Drive a nail into it - that's sin. Go to Confession and the nail is removed, that is the eternal guilt associated with that sin is removed. But what is left - a big hole (size varies according to the sin). That hole is what is called temporal punishment due to sin. Indulgences, penances, and Purgatory are means of healing those holes in us, so that we may be presented to God as a whole piece of wood.


I think this analogy isnt a good one for us Orthodox.  When God forgives He forgives unconditionally and without leaving guilt behind.  No holes, at least not for us.  Yes, we cannot know all our sins even if we make a life confession. There are always the chance that we have forgotten sins and sins that we commit unknowingly and when we die we die with some of these sins on our soul. We rely on God's mercy to forgive us in the state between our earthly life and our final reward.  There is no burning away of "temperal punishment" or "venial sins" at least not in the Context of Roman Catholicism.  We do recognize that those who die unrepentent can and will receive their just rewards in eternal damnation. This is why frequent confession and reception of Holy Communion is essential for one to have a chance at salvation.   As an Orthodox Christian I would love to have the Orthodox faith adopt this purgatory thing because it sure would make the life after a little more predictable.

 
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Athanasios on December 28, 2007, 02:27:53 PM
Hello,

When God forgives He forgives unconditionally and without leaving guilt behind.

I said that God takes away all guilt of sin - no guilt is left behind.


No holes, at least not for us.

So after going to Confession, you are a perfect Saint? You have all the virtues there are and there is no vice left in you? There  no more inclinations to sin and you have no more desire to sin?


Yes, we cannot know all our sins even if we make a life confession. There are always the chance that we have forgotten sins and sins that we commit unknowingly and when we die we die with some of these sins on our soul.

If one honestly forgets a sin (e.g., they don't intentionally not mention for whatever reason - like its too embarrassing) then when the Priests confers absolution, all of your sins are forgiven - each and every one.


We rely on God's mercy to forgive us in the state between our earthly life and our final reward.  There is no burning away of "temperal punishment" or "venial sins" at least not in the Context of Roman Catholicism.

Then what do you make of Scripture such as:

Matthew 5:25-26 - Settle with your opponent quickly while on the way to court with him. Otherwise your opponent will hand you over to the judge, and the judge will hand you over to the guard, and you will be thrown into prison. Amen, I say to you, you will not be released until you have paid the last penny.

Matthew 5:48 - So be perfect, just as your heavenly Father is perfect.

Luke 12:47-48 - That servant who knew his master's will but did not make preparations nor act in accord with his will shall be beaten severely; and the servant who was ignorant of his master's will but acted in a way deserving of a severe beating shall be beaten only lightly. Much will be required of the person entrusted with much, and still more will be demanded of the person entrusted with more.

1 Corinthians 3:10-17 - According to the grace of God given to me, like a wise master builder I laid a foundation, and another is building upon it. But each one must be careful how he builds upon it, for no one can lay a foundation other than the one that is there, namely, Jesus Christ. If anyone builds on this foundation with gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, or straw, the work of each will come to light, for the Day will disclose it. It will be revealed with fire, and the fire (itself) will test the quality of each one's work. If the work stands that someone built upon the foundation, that person will receive a wage. But if someone's work is burned up, that one will suffer loss; the person will be saved, but only as through fire. Do you not know that you are the temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwells in you? If anyone destroys God's temple, God will destroy that person; for the temple of God, which you are, is holy.

Hebrews 12:14 - Strive for peace with everyone, and for that holiness without which no one will see the Lord.

Hebrews 12:23 - and the assembly of the firstborn enrolled in heaven, and God the judge of all, and the spirits of the just made perfect,

1 Peter 1:6-7 -In this you rejoice, although now for a little while you may have to suffer through various trials, so that the genuineness of your faith, more precious than gold that is perishable even though tested by fire, may prove to be for praise, glory, and honor at the revelation of Jesus Christ.

Revelations 3:18-19 - I advise you to buy from me gold refined by fire 14 so that you may be rich, and white garments to put on so that your shameful nakedness may not be exposed, and buy ointment to smear on your eyes so that you may see. Those whom I love, I reprove and chastise. Be earnest, therefore, and repent.

Revelations 21:27 - but nothing unclean will enter it, nor any (one) who does abominable things or tells lies. Only those will enter whose names are written in the Lamb's book of life.

...and more.

And from the Early Church Fathers:

The same divine fire, therefore, with one and the same force and power, will both burn the wicked and will form them again, and will replace as much as it shall consume of their bodies, and will supply itself with eternal nourishment: which the poets transferred to the vulture of Tityus. Thus, without any wasting of bodies, which regain their substance, it will only burn and affect them with a sense of pain. But when He shall have judged the righteous, He will also try them with fire. Then they whose sins shall exceed either in weight or in number, shall be scorched by the fire and burnt: but they whom full justice and maturity of virtue has imbued will not perceive that fire; for they have something of God in themselves which repels and rejects the violence of the flame. So great is the force of innocence, that the flame shrinks from it without doing harm; which has received from God this power, that it burns the wicked, and is under the command of the righteous. Nor, however, let any one imagine that souls are immediately judged after death. For all are detained in one and a common place of confinement, until the arrival of the time in which the great Judge shall make an investigation of their deserts. Then they whose piety shall have been approved of will receive the reward of immortality; but they whose sins and crimes shall have been brought to light will not rise again, but will be hidden in the same darkness with the wicked, being destined to certain punishment. (Lactantius, The Divine Institutes, 7:21 (http://www.newadvent.org/fathers/07017.htm))

I think that the noble athletes of God, who have wrestled all their lives with the invisible enemies, after they have escaped all of their persecutions and have come to the end of life, are examined by the prince of this world; and if they are found to have any wounds from their wrestling, any stains or effects of sin, they are detained. If, however they are found unwounded and without stain, they are, as unconquered, brought by Christ into their rest. (Basil, Homilies on the Psalms, 7:2 - sorry, no online link)

If, then whether by forethought here, or by purgation hereafter, our soul becomes free from any emotional connection with the brute creation, there will be nothing to impede its contemplation of the Beautiful...
...Just as those who refine gold from the dross which it contains not only get this base alloy to melt in the fire, but are obliged to melt the pure gold along with the alloy, and then while this last is being consumed the gold remains, so, while evil is being consumed in the purgatorial fire, the soul that is welded to this evil must inevitably be in the fire too, until the spurious material alloy is consumed and annihilated by this fire...
...When such, then, have been purged from it and utterly removed by the healing processes worked out by the Fire, then every one of the things which make up our conception of the good will come to take their place; incorruption, that is, and life, and honour, and grace, and glory, and everything else that we conjecture is to be seen in God, and in His Image, man as he was made. (Gregory of Nyssa, On the Soul and the Resurrection (http://www.ccel.org/ccel/schaff/npnf205.x.iii.ii.html))

When he has quitted his body and the difference between virtue and vice is known he cannot approach God till the purging fire shall have cleansed the stains with which his soul was infested. That same fire in others will cancel the corruption of matter, and the propensity to evil. (Gregory of Nyssa, Sermon on the Dead - sorry no online link, actually I found one, but it is dead >:()

And it is not impossible that something of the same kind may take place even after this life. It is a matter that may be inquired into, and either ascertained or left doubtful, whether some believers shall pass through a kind of purgatorial fire, and in proportion as they have loved with more or less devotion the goods that perish, be less or more quickly delivered from it. This cannot, however, be the case of any of those of whom it is said, that they"shall not inherit the kingdom of God," unless after suitable repentance their sins be forgiven them. When I say "suitable," I mean that they are not to be unfruitful in almsgiving; for Holy Scripture lays so much stress on this virtue, that our Lord tells us beforehand, that He will ascribe no merit to those on His right hand but that they abound in it, and no defect to those on His left hand but their want of it, when He shall say to the former,"Come, you blessed of my Father, inherit the kingdom," and to the latter, "Depart from me, you cursed, into everlasting fire." (Augustine, Enchiridion, 69 (http://www.newadvent.org/fathers/1302.htm))

For our part, we recognize that even in this life some punishments are purgatorial,—not, indeed, to those whose life is none the better, but rather the worse for them, but to those who are constrained by them to amend their life.  All other punishments, whether temporal or eternal, inflicted as they are on every one by divine providence, are sent either on account of past sins, or of sins presently allowed in the life, or to exercise and reveal a man's graces.  They may be inflicted by the instrumentality of bad men and angels as well as of the good.  For even if any one suffers some hurt through another's wickedness or mistake, the man indeed sins whose ignorance or injustice does the harm; but God, who by His just though hidden judgment permits it to be done, sins not.  But temporary punishments are suffered by some in this life only, by others after death, by others both now and then; but all of them before that last and strictest judgment.  But of those who suffer temporary punishments after death, all are not doomed to those everlasting pains which are to follow that judgment; for to some, as we have already said, what is not remitted in this world is remitted in the next, that is, they are not punished with the eternal punishment of the world to come. (Augustine, City of God, 21:13 (http://www.newadvent.org/fathers/120121.htm))


Our Lord saith in the Gospel: Walk whiles you have the light: and by his Prophet he saith: In time accepted have I heard thee, and in the day of salvation have I holpen thee: which the Apostle St. Paul expounding, saith: Behold,  now is the time acceptable; behold, now the day of salvation. Solomon, likewise, saith: Whatsoever thy hand is able to do, work it instantly: for neither work, nor reason, nor knowledge, nor wisdom shall be in hell, whither thou dost hasten. David also saith: Because his mercy is for ever. By which sayings it is plain, that in such state as a man departeth out of this life, in the same he is presented in judgment before God. But yet we must believe that before the day of judgment there is a Purgatory fire for certain small sins: because our Saviour saith, that he which speaketh blasphemy against the holy Ghost, that it shall not be forgiven him, neither in this world, nor in the world to come. Out of which sentence we learn, that some sins are forgiven in this world, and some other may be pardoned in the next: for that which is denied concerning one sin, is consequently understood to be granted touching some other. But yet this, as I said, we have not to believe but only concerning little and very small sins, as, for example, daily idle talk, immoderate laughter, negligence in the care of our family (which kind of offences scarce can they avoid, that know in what sort sin is to be shunned), ignorant errors in matters of no great weight: all which sins be punished after death, if men procured not pardon and remission for them in their lifetime: for when St. Paul saith, that Christ is the foundation:  and by and by addeth: And if any man build upon this foundation gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, stubble: the work of every one, of what kind it is, the fire shall try. If any man's work abide which he built thereupon, he shall receive reward; if any mans work burn, he shall suffer detriment, but himself shall be saved, yet so as by fire. For although these words may be understood of the fire of tribulation, which men suffer in this world: yet if any will interpret them of the fire of Purgatory, which shall be in the next life: then must he carefully consider, that the Apostle said not that he may be saved by fire, that buildeth upon this foundation iron, brass, or lead, that is, the greater sort of sins, and therefore more hard, and consequently not remissible in that place: but wood, hay, stubble, that is, little and very light sins, which the fire doth easily consume. Yet we have here further to consider, that none can be there purged, no, not for the least sins that be, unless in his lifetime he deserved by virtuous works to find such favour in that place. (Gregory the Great, Dialogues 4:39 (http://www.tertullian.org/fathers/gregory_04_dialogues_book4.htm))

...and more.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: FrChris on December 28, 2007, 03:04:23 PM
Believe me, we can find plenty of Patristic quotes in opposition to what you are posting, Athanasios....proof texters such as yourself never quite get that any one person can write or say or do literally anything on the face of the planet. It is decisions made by the Church that matter.

I like this explanation:

http://www.orthodoxinfo.com/death/stmark_purg.aspx

Quote
In explanation of the Apostle's words, they quoted the commentary of S. John Chrysostom, who, using the word fire, gives it the meaning of an eternal, and not temporary, purgatorial fire; explains the words wood, hay, stubble, in the sense of bad deeds, as food for the eternal fire; the word day, as meaning the day of the last judgment; and the words saved yet so as by fire, as meaning the preservation and continuance of the sinner's existence while suffering punishment. Keeping to this explanation, they reject the other explanation given by S. Augustine, founded on the words shall be saved, which he understood in the sense of bliss, and consequently gave quite another meaning to all this quotation. "It is very right to suppose," wrote the Orthodox teachers, "that the Greeks should understand Greek words better than foreigners. Consequently, if we cannot prove that any one of those saints, who spoke the Greek language, explains the Apostle's words, written in Greek, in a sense different to that given by the blessed John, then surely we must agree with the majority of these Church celebrities." The expressions sothenai, sozesthai, and soteria, used by heathen writers, mean in our language continuance, existence (diamenein, einai.) The very idea of the Apostle's words shows this. As fire naturally destroys, whereas those who are doomed to eternal fire are not destroyed, the Apostle says that they continue in fire, preserving and continuing their existence, though at the same time they are being burned by fire. To prove the truth of such an explanation of these words by the Apostle, (ver. 11, 15,) they make the following remarks: The Apostle divides all that is built upon the proposed foundation into two parts, never even hinting of any third, middle part. By gold, silver, stones, he means virtues; by hay, wood, stubble, that which is contrary to virtue, i. e., bad works. "Your doctrine," they continued to tell the Latins, "would perhaps have had some foundation if he (the Apostle) had divided bad works into two kinds, and bad said that one kind is purified by God, and the other worthy of eternal punishment. But he made no such division; simply naming the works entitling man to eternal bliss, i.e., virtues, and those meriting eternal punishment, i.e., sins. After which he says, 'Every man's work shall be made manifest,’ and shows when this will happen, pointing to that last day, when God will render unto all according to their merits: 'For the day,' he says, 'shall declare it, because it shall be revealed by fire.' Evidently, this is the day of the second coming of Christ, the coming age, the day so called in a particular sense, or as opposed to the present life, which is but night. This is the day when He will come in glory, and a fiery stream shall precede Him. (Dan. vii. 10; Ps. 1. 3; xcvii. 3; 2 S. Pet. iii. 12, 15.) All this shows us that S. Paul speaks here of the last day, and of the eternal fire prepared for sinners. 'This fire,' says he, 'shall try every man's work of what sort it is,' enlightening some works, and burning others with the workers. But when the evil deed will be destroyed by fire, the evil doers will not be destroyed also, but will continue their existence in the fire, and suffer eternally. Whereas then the Apostle does not divide sins here into mortal and venial, but deeds in general into good and bad; whereas the time of this event is referred by him to the final day, as by the Apostle Peter also; whereas, again, he attributes to the fire the power of destroying all evil actions, but not the doers; it becomes evident that the Apostle Paul does not speak of purgatorial fire, which, even in your opinion, extends not over all evil actions, but over some of the minor sins. But these words also, 'If any man's work shall be burned, he shall suffer loss,' (zemiothesetai, i.e., shall lose,) shows that the Apostle speaks of the eternal tortures; they are deprived of the Divine light: whereas this cannot be spoken of those purified, as you say; for they not only do not lose anything, but even acquire a great deal, by being freed from evil, and clothed in purity and candour."

(bolded text is mine)

Here is an exceprt from the goarch website that explains this quite succinctly:

http://www.goarch.org/en/ourfaith/articles/article7076.asp

Quote
The moral progress of the soul, either for better or for worse, ends at the very moment of the separation of the body and soul; at that very moment the definite destiny of the soul in the everlasting life is decided. (see Androutsos Dogmatics p. 409). It will be judged not according to its deeds one by one, but according to the entire total results of its deeds and thoughts. The Orthodox Church believes that at this moment the soul of the dead person begins to enjoy the consequences of its deeds and thoughts on earth - that is, to enjoy the life in Paradise or to undergo the life in Hell. There.is no way of repentance, no way of escape, no reincarnation and no help from the outside world. Its place is decided forever by its Creator and judge.

The Orthodox Church does not believe in purgatory (a place of purging), that is, the inter-mediate state after death in which the souls of the saved (those who have not received temporal punishment for their sins) are purified of all taint preparatory to entering into Heaven, where every soul is perfect and fit to see God. Also, the Orthodox Church does not believe in indulgences as remissions from purgatoral punishment. Both purgatory and indulgences are inter-corrolated theories, unwitnessed in the Bible or in the Ancient Church, and when they were enforced and applied they brought about evil practices at the expense of the prevailing Truths of the Church. If Almighty God in His merciful loving-kindness changes the dreadful situation of the sinner, it is unknown to the Church of Christ. The Church lived for fifteen hundred years without such a theory.


So, what do we believe? After we die, we are judged, and also that prayers are efficacious. We do not need to ask why, because we take it on faith that they are, as witnessed by Scripture and Tradition.

Why do you need to try to explain this?
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Athanasios on December 28, 2007, 03:38:16 PM
Hello,

Believe me, we can find plenty of Patristic quotes in opposition to what you are posting, Athanasios....proof texters such as yourself never quite get that any one person can write or say or do literally anything on the face of the planet.
I also found it humorous that when the Orthodox quote from the Fathers, it's an exposition of the Faith - when Catholics do the same, it's proof texting or quote mining.  :laugh:

In my defense, those who truly are proof texters and quote miners do at times rip quotes out of context ... but I strive not to do that. I try to provide as much of the Patristic quote as I think is in context and I strive to provide an online quote to the original source in its entirety for a reader to get a complete context of the quote - though this isn't always possible to find online links.


It is decisions made by the Church that matter.
Indeed, and isn't that where the argument really is. Which one has the authentic interpretation or even the authority to interpret the Scriptures and Tradition - the Orthodox Church or the Catholic Church. And even beyond that, which viewpoint is proper - Byzantine or Latin. I for one don't see the conflict between the two (except where it is claimed that the other view is wrong). For instance, given the quote from Goarch:

Quote
The moral progress of the soul, either for better or for worse, ends at the very moment of the separation of the body and soul; at that very moment the definite destiny of the soul in the everlasting life is decided. (see Androutsos Dogmatics p. 409). It will be judged not according to its deeds one by one, but according to the entire total results of its deeds and thoughts. The Orthodox Church believes that at this moment the soul of the dead person begins to enjoy the consequences of its deeds and thoughts on earth - that is, to enjoy the life in Paradise or to undergo the life in Hell. There.is no way of repentance, no way of escape, no reincarnation and no help from the outside world. Its place is decided forever by its Creator and judge.

I could say that as a Catholic. Purgatory is not seen as a method of repentance (though some Orthodox have told me they believe that even those in hell can repent and be saved before the Final Judgement). On another thread, someone linked to the east2west site where they pretty much got the Catholic official viewpoint (where all the rest would be theologoumenon). And it is:

In the Catholic understanding, only two points are necessary dogma concerning "purgatory": 1) There is a place of transition/transformation for those en-route to Heaven, and 2) prayer is efficacious for the dead who are in this state.

Though, like I said on the other thread - I'd modify it to say state/place.


We do not need to ask why, because we take it on faith that they are, as witnessed by Scripture and Tradition.

Why do you need to try to explain this?

I think this question would be better suited for its own thread.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: stanley123 on December 28, 2007, 04:01:50 PM
Believe me, we can find plenty of Patristic quotes in opposition to what you are posting,
Dear Fr. Chris:
    This is a difficult one for some Catholics to understand. For example, how would you explain the excerpt from The Soul After Death, by Fr. Seraphim Rose, App. I, pp. 196-213, as given in Reply #103?
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: FrChris on December 28, 2007, 07:12:18 PM
^^How would I explain it?

See, I don't have to, beyond the fact that God is inherently a mystery. In His condescension, He will work out our salation through the Mysteries of His Church. That we know; all else are details that limit Him regarding His plan for us.

Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: stanley123 on December 28, 2007, 08:48:47 PM
^^How would I explain it?

See, I don't have to, beyond the fact that God is inherently a mystery. In His condescension, He will work out our salation through the Mysteries of His Church. That we know; all else are details that limit Him regarding His plan for us.


OK. Thank you.
With all due respect and esteem for the  good Orthodox Christians here, I will honestly have to say, that I haven't changed my mind about what I already wrote in reply #104.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Alexius on December 29, 2007, 12:43:22 AM
Believe me, we can find plenty of Patristic quotes in opposition to what you are posting, Athanasios....proof texters such as yourself never quite get that any one person can write or say or do literally anything on the face of the planet. It is decisions made by the Church that matter.

I like this explanation:

http://www.orthodoxinfo.com/death/stmark_purg.aspx

(bolded text is mine)

Here is an exceprt from the goarch website that explains this quite succinctly:

http://www.goarch.org/en/ourfaith/articles/article7076.asp

So, what do we believe? After we die, we are judged, and also that prayers are efficacious. We do not need to ask why, because we take it on faith that they are, as witnessed by Scripture and Tradition.

Why do you need to try to explain this?

Yes, I saw this article on the Greek Orthodox website and I found myself confused. It reminds me of the Protestant view...Why are prayers helpful, then?
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Athanasios on December 29, 2007, 04:53:06 PM
Hello,

Yes, I saw this article on the Greek Orthodox website and I found myself confused. It reminds me of the Protestant view...Why are prayers helpful, then?

Which part?
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Alexius on December 31, 2007, 08:42:43 PM
Hello,

Which part?

On the Greek Orthodox link titled "Death, The Treshold to Eternal Life." Under the section "God's Judgment," it confuses me why one would pray for the dead. It seems the article speaks of prayers and remembering loved ones as part of human nature, but not helpful for them...??? I mean, I reject the Latin specifics of Purgatory, but that souls are purified is not an issue to me. Excesses in Indulgences are likewise troubling, but our deeds and prayers are surely helpful...
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: JoeS on January 01, 2008, 03:38:40 PM
Hello,

Which part?

We can not know the extent or limitless bounty of God's mercy.  Sorry to say that no one has yet come back from the grave except Christ and Lazarus, and the later, to my knowledge, didnt put pen to papyrus to record his journey.  Tradition has it that Lazarus became a bishop.
Our take on the eternal is no less creditable than yours. We do believe there is a state in which our sins are dismissed by God provided we are truly repentant.  You call this state purgatory we dont.

Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: shelleyrose on January 15, 2008, 09:03:31 PM
it confuses me why one would pray for the dead.

I have often thought that our prayers are not temporal, nothing in the spiritual life is.  Really, what creates TIME?....The Earth rotating and revolving around the sun and measured incrementally by humans....both PHYSICAL realities.  So TIME is a result of our physical reality has no involvement in the spiritual world, including the afterlife.  So when we pray for the dead it is perhaps that our prayers and whatever they achieve are applied to that person during their lifetime when they needed it.  And this is also my problem with the Catholic teaching that people spend X amount of time in purgatory.  There is no sun, earth, moon, tides, and so on governing purgatory (or Heaven and Hell) with physical earthly time.

What do you think?

Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: stanley123 on January 16, 2008, 01:46:45 AM
I have often thought that our prayers are not temporal, nothing in the spiritual life is.  Really, what creates TIME?....The Earth rotating and revolving around the sun and measured incrementally by humans....both PHYSICAL realities.  So TIME is a result of our physical reality has no involvement in the spiritual world, including the afterlife.  What do you think?
We may measure time by the earth rotating around the sun, but that does not define time. Time is some sort of a dimension in which events occur in sequence. So time does have relevance to our spiritual world. For example, at one point in time, a man may be a sinner. But after a while, he may repent, and then later on in time, he may become a saint. So time does have a relevance to our spiritual life.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: stanley123 on January 16, 2008, 01:49:34 AM
  And this is also my problem with the Catholic teaching that people spend X amount of time in purgatory.  There is no sun, earth, moon, tides, and so on governing purgatory (or Heaven and Hell) with physical earthly time.
What do you think?
Purgatory makes sense to me, since a man may die with small or venial sins on his soul, or he may have repented imperfectly for his serious or mortal sins, and thereby would not make it to heaven right away.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: ignatius on April 21, 2008, 10:55:21 PM
Why is 'Temporal Punishment' separate from 'Eternal Punishment'? I mean why aren't we purged in Hell? Why is Purgatory separate?
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Orthodox Wannabe on June 05, 2008, 01:40:27 AM
Thankfully Doctor Martin Luther restored part the Gospel to the Western world. I totally support his Orthodox stand against indulgences, purgatory, satisfactions, etc.

Yes, but he wiped many other important things from Christendom in the west. Such as a valid Priesthood, a valid Hierachy and a valid Mass. And replaced it with an ever splintering school of heretics.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Asteriktos on June 05, 2008, 01:28:06 PM
Quote
... a man may die with small or venial sins on his soul, or he may have repented imperfectly for his serious or mortal sins, and thereby would not make it to heaven right away.

Fwiw, here's what St. Mark of Ephesus had to say:

Quote
But if souls have departed this life in faith and love, while nevertheless carrying away with themselves certain faults, whether small ones over which they have no repented at all, or great ones for which--even though they have repented over them--they did not undertake to show fruits of repentance: such souls, we believe, must be cleansed from this kind of sins, but not by means of some purgatorial fire or a definite punishment in some place (for this, as we have said, has not at all be handed down to us). But some must be cleansed in the very departure from the body, thanks only to fear, as St. Gregory the Dialogist literally shows; while others must be cleansed after the departure from the body, either while remaining in the same earthly place, before they come to worship God and are honored with the lot of the blessed, or--if their sins were more serious and bind them for a longer duration--they are kept in [hades], but not in order to remain forever in fire and torment, but as it were in prison and confinement under guard.

All such ones, we affirm, are helped by the prayers and Liturgies performed for them, with the cooperation of the Divine goodness and love for mankind. This Divine cooperation immediately disdains and remits some sins, those committed out of human weakness, as Dionysius the Great (the Areopagite) says in 'Reflections on the Mystery of Those Reposed in Faith' (In 'The Ecclesiastical Hierarchy, 7, 7); while other sins, after a certain time, by righteous judgments it either likewise releases and forgives--and that completely--or lightens the responsibility for them until that final judgment. And therefore we see no necessity whatever for any other punishment or for a cleansing fire; for some are cleansed by fear, while others are devoured by gnawings of conscience with more torment than any fire, and still others are cleansed only the the very terror before the Divine Glory and the uncertainty as to what the future will be...

And so, we intreat God and believe to deliver the departed from (eternal torment), and not from any other torment or fire apart from those torments and that fire which have been proclaimed to be forever. And that, moreover, the souls of the departed are delivered by prayers from confinement in [hades], as if from a certain prison, is testified, among many others, by Theophanes the Confessor, called the Branded. ...In one of the canons for the reposed he thus prays for them: 'Deliver, O Savior, Thy slaves who are in the [hades] of tears and sighing' (Octoechos, Saturday canon for the deposed, Tone 8, Canticle 6, Glory). - St. Mark of Ephesus, First Homily on the Refutation of the Latin Chapters Concerning Purgatorial Fire

There is also the idea in the Church Fathers that just standing in the presence of God will be like standing before a purifying fire, which would burn our "impurities" off. How this idea squares with that of St. Mark of Ephesus, I'm not so sure.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Asteriktos on February 09, 2009, 05:15:38 PM
The announcement in church bulletins and on Web sites has been greeted with enthusiasm by some and wariness by others. But mainly, it has gone over the heads of a vast generation of Roman Catholics who have no idea what it means: “Bishop Announces Plenary Indulgences."

In recent months, dioceses around the world have been offering Catholics a spiritual benefit that fell out of favor decades ago — the indulgence, a sort of amnesty from punishment in the afterlife — and reminding them of the church’s clout in mitigating the wages of sin.

The fact that many Catholics under 50 have never sought one, and never heard of indulgences except in high school European history (where Martin Luther denounces the selling of them in 1517 and ignites the Protestant Reformation) simply makes their reintroduction more urgent among church leaders bent on restoring fading traditions of penance in what they see as a self-satisfied world.

“Why are we bringing it back?” asked Bishop Nicholas A. DiMarzio of Brooklyn, who has embraced the move. “Because there is sin in the world.” ...

To read the rest of the article go to: For Catholics, Heaven Moves a Step Closer  (http://www.nytimes.com/2009/02/10/nyregion/10indulgence.html?_r=1&partner=rss&emc=rss&src=ig)
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: scamandrius on February 09, 2009, 05:30:40 PM
“Why are we bringing it back?” asked Bishop Nicholas A. DiMarzio of Brooklyn, who has embraced the move. “Because there is sin in the world.” ...

This is a non sequitur.  How does the sinfulness of the world affect the sinners in purgatory?  Does God punish them or purify more because we are still screwing up here on earth.  Again, this is another reason why this doctrine of the Catholic Church really needs to be jettisoned once and for all.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Papist on February 09, 2009, 05:36:26 PM
“Why are we bringing it back?” asked Bishop Nicholas A. DiMarzio of Brooklyn, who has embraced the move. “Because there is sin in the world.” ...

This is a non sequitur.  How does the sinfulness of the world affect the sinners in purgatory?  Does God punish them or purify more because we are still screwing up here on earth.  Again, this is another reason why this doctrine of the Catholic Church really needs to be jettisoned once and for all.
I think that he meant that because the world is and always has been sinful that we now need indulgences for ourselves and those in purpatory need them as well. If there were no such thing as sin, there would be no need for indulgences.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: ozgeorge on February 09, 2009, 05:37:08 PM
If there were no such thing as sin, there would be no need for indulgences.

There is no need for indulgences. Period.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Papist on February 09, 2009, 05:38:03 PM
If there were no such thing as sin, there would be no need for indulgences.

There is no need for indulgences. Period.
I understand your position. I am just explaining the Catholic one.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: ozgeorge on February 09, 2009, 05:40:32 PM
If there were no such thing as sin, there would be no need for indulgences.

There is no need for indulgences. Period.
I understand your position. I am just explaining the Catholic one.

I don't think you are explaining the Catholic point of view, because if you were, then the Catholic Church teaches that sins cannot be forgiven without Indulgences, and surely you are not suggesting such a thing is the teaching of the Roman Catholic Church.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Papist on February 09, 2009, 05:43:16 PM
If there were no such thing as sin, there would be no need for indulgences.

There is no need for indulgences. Period.
I understand your position. I am just explaining the Catholic one.

I don't think you are explaining the Catholic point of view, because if you were, then the Catholic Church teaches that sins cannot be forgiven without Indulgences, and surely you are not suggesting such a thing is the teaching of the Roman Catholic Church.
I was suggesting no such thing and you know it but I know where arguements with you lead based on past exerpience and through observing your interactions with Fr. Ambrose, so I have no interest in continuing this discussion with you.
Now I am asking you a question as a moderator? Is there a way I can make it so that I don't see your posts so that I won't be drawn into the anger and frustation that leads to me being warned or moderated?
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: ozgeorge on February 09, 2009, 05:48:18 PM
I was suggesting no such thing and you know it
Then why did you say:
If there were no such thing as sin, there would be no need for indulgences.
?
but I know where arguements with you lead based on past exerpience and through observing your interactions with Fr. Ambrose,
Yep. To finding the truth about claims and matters.

so I have no interest in continuing this discussion with you.
OK then. Don't.

Now I am asking you a question as a moderator? Is there a way I can make it so that I don't see your posts so that I won't be drawn into the anger and frustation that leads to me being warned or moderated?
I'm afraid not. You just have to ignore me.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Entscheidungsproblem on February 09, 2009, 05:55:50 PM
Since I am sure this thread will head down the path anyways:

Indulgences... In the West. (http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,15659.0.html)
Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc (http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,13820.0.html)

These are both threads in which one can debate and discuss the practice of indulgences, rather than the RCC's push to bring them back into the mainstream (this thread).
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Myrrh23 on February 09, 2009, 08:10:40 PM
If there were no such thing as sin, there would be no need for indulgences.

There is no need for indulgences. Period.

There is no need for Purgatory, either. Either Jesus' sacrifice washes us clean as snow and forgives us completely, or it doesn't. When I was Catholic, Purgatory felt like a Toll House between here and Heaven...(and this Toll House doesn't give you cookies! It gives you punishments! :P)
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: ialmisry on February 09, 2009, 09:40:20 PM
“Why are we bringing it back?” asked Bishop Nicholas A. DiMarzio of Brooklyn, who has embraced the move. “Because there is sin in the world.” ...

This is a non sequitur.  How does the sinfulness of the world affect the sinners in purgatory?  Does God punish them or purify more because we are still screwing up here on earth.  Again, this is another reason why this doctrine of the Catholic Church really needs to be jettisoned once and for all.
I think that he meant that because the world is and always has been sinful that we now need indulgences for ourselves and those in purpatory need them as well. If there were no such thing as sin, there would be no need for indulgences.
And since there is no such thing as purgatory, there is no neeed for indulgences.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Marc1152 on February 09, 2009, 10:17:09 PM
More than once on EWTN (the Catholic TV Network) I have heard them advise that 30 minutes of reading scripture earns you one plenary indulgence. Apparently the idea was not completely abandoned.

Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Entscheidungsproblem on February 09, 2009, 10:26:45 PM
More than once on EWTN (the Catholic TV Network) I have heard them advise that 30 minutes of reading scripture earns you one plenary indulgence. Apparently the idea was not completely abandoned.

That is a reformed version of an older indulgence.

"An indulgence of 300 days is granted to all the Faithful who devoutly read the Holy Scriptures at least a quarter of an hour."
-- Pope Leo XIII (13 Dec., 1898)
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: scamandrius on February 09, 2009, 10:59:59 PM
^So for every 15 minutes of Scripture reading, 300 days of "Get of Purgatory" are applied to one's "sentence"?  How does someone come up with a formulation like this?  Where is the testimony in the fathers?  Reading things like this only confirm that indulgences and purgatory are innovations of the one true faith handed down once and for all to the saints.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: stashko on February 09, 2009, 11:06:19 PM
How does one get 300 days off if there no time there..How does that work ??? ???
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Myrrh23 on February 09, 2009, 11:07:27 PM
^So for every 15 minutes of Scripture reading, 300 days of "Get of Purgatory" are applied to one's "sentence"?  How does someone come up with a formulation like this?  Where is the testimony in the fathers?  Reading things like this only confirm that indulgences and purgatory are innovations of the one true faith handed down once and for all to the saints.

LOL! Well, Roman Catholicism is known for its legalism! ;)

How does one get 300 days off if there no time there..How does that work ??? ???

Well, actually, God has this cooking timer on his stove for when there's fresh souls in the oven, and... :D
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: ialmisry on February 09, 2009, 11:08:44 PM
^So for every 15 minutes of Scripture reading, 300 days of "Get of Purgatory" are applied to one's "sentence"?  How does someone come up with a formulation like this?  Where is the testimony in the fathers?  Reading things like this only confirm that indulgences and purgatory are innovations of the one true faith handed down once and for all to the saints.

Correction: innovation from the One True Faith.

The Vatican has innovations of the one true faith, they call it "development of doctrine."

How does one get 300 days off if there no time there..How does that work ??? ???

Don't confuse them with the facts.

Well, actually, God has this cooking timer on his stove for when there's fresh souls in the oven, and... :D

LOL.  So purtugatory is preheating for heaven?
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Entscheidungsproblem on February 09, 2009, 11:16:37 PM
How does one get 300 days off if there no time there..How does that work ??? ???

The duration (which isn't practiced anymore) was equivalent to the that amount of time of penance made in this life (so, 300 days of penance in this example), it had nothing to do with the "time" spent in purgatory.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: BrotherAidan on February 09, 2009, 11:51:31 PM
When I was first looking into Orthodoxy and a little bit into RCC, Latin teaching on things like merits of the saints and undulgences spoke in favor of Orthodoxy.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: antiderivative on February 10, 2009, 12:11:12 AM
Did the Orthodox Church ever have indulgences?
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Entscheidungsproblem on February 10, 2009, 12:18:35 AM
Did the Orthodox Church ever have indulgences?

Nope, no need for them.  Since the RCC and Orthodox Church differ on their beliefs of temporal punishment.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: stashko on February 10, 2009, 12:36:05 AM
“Why are we bringing it back?” asked Bishop Nicholas A. DiMarzio of Brooklyn, who has embraced the move. “Because there is sin in the world.” ...

This is a non sequitur.  How does the sinfulness of the world affect the sinners in purgatory?  Does God punish them or purify more because we are still screwing up here on earth.  Again, this is another reason why this doctrine of the Catholic Church really needs to be jettisoned once and for all.
I think that he meant that because the world is and always has been sinful that we now need indulgences for ourselves and those in purpatory need them as well. If there were no such thing as sin, there would be no need for indulgences.


Brother Papist....

Please clear up some confusion ....the souls that are in purgatory are not very sinful souls but are being cleansed of spots of sins ....
But in life they must of went to Confession and Holy Communion recieved absolution,,shouldn't that of cleansed them totally...why would they have  to end up there... It's like saying,, to me it sound's like Christ's crucifixion death and resurrection didn't achieve it all.... ??? ???
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Papist on February 10, 2009, 01:30:16 AM
“Why are we bringing it back?” asked Bishop Nicholas A. DiMarzio of Brooklyn, who has embraced the move. “Because there is sin in the world.” ...

This is a non sequitur.  How does the sinfulness of the world affect the sinners in purgatory?  Does God punish them or purify more because we are still screwing up here on earth.  Again, this is another reason why this doctrine of the Catholic Church really needs to be jettisoned once and for all.
I think that he meant that because the world is and always has been sinful that we now need indulgences for ourselves and those in purpatory need them as well. If there were no such thing as sin, there would be no need for indulgences.


Brother Papist....

Please clear up some confusion ....the souls that are in purgatory are not very sinful souls but are being cleansed of spots of sins ....
But in life they must of went to Confession and Holy Communion recieved absolution,,shouldn't that of cleansed them totally...why would they have  to end up there... It's like saying,, to me it sound's like Christ's crucifixion death and resurrection didn't achieve it all.... ??? ???

Its not the stain of the sins that are cleansed but our attachement to sin that is cleared away. None of us is perfect when we die. We all know this. Yet we know that that the scriptures state that nothing unholy will enter into heaven. Well, the attachement that we still have to any sin or, rather, the disordered inclination to sin that we still have is removed in the fire of God's love in purgatory so that Christ, in his mercy, makes us fit for heaven.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Entscheidungsproblem on February 10, 2009, 01:40:10 AM
I merged the "For Catholics, Heaven Moves a Step Closer" into this pre-existing thread that covered the various topics being discussed.  It is just easier to keep these sort of discussions all in one area.

-- Nebelpfade
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: stashko on February 10, 2009, 02:10:34 AM
“Why are we bringing it back?” asked Bishop Nicholas A. DiMarzio of Brooklyn, who has embraced the move. “Because there is sin in the world.” ...

This is a non sequitur.  How does the sinfulness of the world affect the sinners in purgatory?  Does God punish them or purify more because we are still screwing up here on earth.  Again, this is another reason why this doctrine of the Catholic Church really needs to be jettisoned once and for all.
I think that he meant that because the world is and always has been sinful that we now need indulgences for ourselves and those in purpatory need them as well. If there were no such thing as sin, there would be no need for indulgences.


Brother Papist....

Please clear up some confusion ....the souls that are in purgatory are not very sinful souls but are being cleansed of spots of sins ....
But in life they must of went to Confession and Holy Communion recieved absolution,,shouldn't that of cleansed them totally...why would they have  to end up there... It's like saying,, to me it sound's like Christ's crucifixion death and resurrection didn't achieve it all.... ??? ???

Its not the stain of the sins that are cleansed but our attachement to sin that is cleared away. None of us is perfect when we die. We all know this. Yet we know that that the scriptures state that nothing unholy will enter into heaven. Well, the attachement that we still have to any sin or, rather, the disordered inclination to sin that we still have is removed in the fire of God's love in purgatory so that Christ, in his mercy, makes us fit for heaven.


When you say attachment is it like desire to repeat the same sin while yet alive ....doesn't that fall into temptation that every body experiences including the Holy Saints but they not acting on it ,,saying no to the flesh but yes to the spirit...Scripture does say,, there is no man that livith that sinneth not...that is part of the orthodox funeral service.....
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: AlexanderOfBergamo on February 10, 2009, 09:15:58 AM
Hi all!

Quote
^So for every 15 minutes of Scripture reading, 300 days of "Get of Purgatory" are applied to one's "sentence"?  How does someone come up with a formulation like this?  Where is the testimony in the fathers?  Reading things like this only confirm that indulgences and purgatory are innovations of the one true faith handed down once and for all to the saints.
I think I can give you some answer on this point brother. I hope that RCs on this forum can correct me on this point, but that's how a friend of mine (ex RC seminarist) clarified this point of the faith I once shared.
There's no law in heaven and no tradition of the Church that 15 minutes of Scripture reading equal 300 days less of purgatory. Why? Because it's a decision of the Pope to grant this indulgence/extra absolution. In other words: as a Successor of Peter, the Pope has been given the power to bind and loose. Then, he can also choose the conditions to obtain absolution. In this case, the Pope decreed - as a sort of judge - that all sinners who read the Scriptures for 15 minutes a day were granted by Papal power an indulgence of 300 days of purgatory. If he wanted, he could have given a plenary indulgence, or a different amount of days, and so on.
In the prayer of the Rosary, for example, there's a specific prayer "for the intentions of the Pope": if you pray for the Pope and his intentions, you can obtain an indulgence.

In other words, the doctrine of indulgences is connected more explicitly to the Papal powers then to the essence of Purgatory.

I also ask you if my point of view on life after death in Orthodoxy is correct. I always perceived time for the departed as a "personal perception". Let's take as an example the Toll House imagery (which is, I think, only a mystical transposition of otherwise incomprehensible truths) and the extension of prayers for the departed. All Toll Houses revelations ascribe to the soul a period of 40 days for purification, but Orthodox Christians pray for the dead even beyond the 40th day after one's death. Then my personal opinion/understanding is that as God's time is different then ours, also the departed's time is different: they perceive that only 40 days have passed (because 40 is a symbol for preparation and purification in Christianity: look at the period of Christ in the desert, and at the Exodus) even if each souls spends a different time there. Is my opinion in some way erroneous? Shall I renounce to this interpretation of time for the departed? Is it somehow an heretical theological opinion from an Orthodox perspective?
Thanks in advance for your explanations.

In Christ,   Alex
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Papist on February 10, 2009, 12:17:51 PM
“Why are we bringing it back?” asked Bishop Nicholas A. DiMarzio of Brooklyn, who has embraced the move. “Because there is sin in the world.” ...

This is a non sequitur.  How does the sinfulness of the world affect the sinners in purgatory?  Does God punish them or purify more because we are still screwing up here on earth.  Again, this is another reason why this doctrine of the Catholic Church really needs to be jettisoned once and for all.
I think that he meant that because the world is and always has been sinful that we now need indulgences for ourselves and those in purpatory need them as well. If there were no such thing as sin, there would be no need for indulgences.


Brother Papist....

Please clear up some confusion ....the souls that are in purgatory are not very sinful souls but are being cleansed of spots of sins ....
But in life they must of went to Confession and Holy Communion recieved absolution,,shouldn't that of cleansed them totally...why would they have  to end up there... It's like saying,, to me it sound's like Christ's crucifixion death and resurrection didn't achieve it all.... ??? ???

Its not the stain of the sins that are cleansed but our attachement to sin that is cleared away. None of us is perfect when we die. We all know this. Yet we know that that the scriptures state that nothing unholy will enter into heaven. Well, the attachement that we still have to any sin or, rather, the disordered inclination to sin that we still have is removed in the fire of God's love in purgatory so that Christ, in his mercy, makes us fit for heaven.


When you say attachment is it like desire to repeat the same sin while yet alive ....doesn't that fall into temptation that every body experiences including the Holy Saints but they not acting on it ,,saying no to the flesh but yes to the spirit...Scripture does say,, there is no man that livith that sinneth not...that is part of the orthodox funeral service.....
Yes and that part of us that is prone to sin, is a defect that need healing before we enter into heaven.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Myrrh23 on February 10, 2009, 01:55:05 PM
How does one get 300 days off if there no time there..How does that work ??? ???

The duration (which isn't practiced anymore) was equivalent to the that amount of time of penance made in this life (so, 300 days of penance in this example), it had nothing to do with the "time" spent in purgatory.

That's not what I was taught, and the RCC used an example to illustrate it. I was taught that unconfessed sins and/or sins confessed but not truly regretted equalled a certain amount of time in Purgo. The example the Church used to "help" us believe was the "vision" that one of the Medjugorie girls had from the Virgin Mary. Supposedly, she asked about where an older friend of hers was that had died in her teens or twenties. The Virgin responded that her friend was in Purgo and would remain there for more than 100 years due to her sins. (I think it was a hundred years... :-\) Also, there were special prayers to shave off time in Purgo, or even release the souls altogether. I remember I used to pray a special prayer for the latter. I'll have to find the prayer...
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: lubeltri on February 10, 2009, 03:01:26 PM
How does one get 300 days off if there no time there..How does that work ??? ???

The duration (which isn't practiced anymore) was equivalent to the that amount of time of penance made in this life (so, 300 days of penance in this example), it had nothing to do with the "time" spent in purgatory.

That's not what I was taught, and the RCC used an example to illustrate it. I was taught that unconfessed sins and/or sins confessed but not truly regretted equalled a certain amount of time in Purgo. The example the Church used to "help" us believe was the "vision" that one of the Medjugorie girls had from the Virgin Mary. Supposedly, she asked about where an older friend of hers was that had died in her teens or twenties. The Virgin responded that her friend was in Purgo and would remain there for more than 100 years due to her sins. (I think it was a hundred years... :-\) Also, there were special prayers to shave off time in Purgo, or even release the souls altogether. I remember I used to pray a special prayer for the latter. I'll have to find the prayer...

How many times have I heard the bolded text? Clearly you were taught wrong.

1) The Medjugorje "apparitions" are not approved by the Catholic Church.

2) There is no such thing as "time" in Purgatory. Before the reformation of indulgences by Pope Paul VI, indulgences were expressed by periods of time (30 days, etc.), but these did not refer to actual time spent in Purgatory but to the equivalent length of canonical penances performed during the patristic period. So an indulgence of 30 days is equivalent to 30 days of canonical penance in the early Church.

However, Church law on indulgences has changed---indulgences are not expressed by periods of time but simply as "partial indulgences." The amount of purification this indulgence accomplishes depends on the depth of charity with which the indulgenced act is done.

Plenary (full) indulgences remain.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Stefi on February 10, 2009, 09:54:13 PM
So why would someone so perfected, who as you said is the type who needs no stop in purgatory wish to be granted a plenary indulgence? Or why make the conditions for revieving one so strict that those who might need it the most may likely never recieve it? Is it to inspire them to go after all the partial indulgences they can so they might actually be bothered to do good things?
I think that these indulgences and good works of ours on earth,  can be applied to some extent to lessen the punishment of those souls already in Purgatory.
For me, it seems like Purgatory is very reasonable and makes a lot of sense. Here's why for example: Suppose that an individual commits some terrible and horrific crimes, causing enormous pain and sorrow to many families, but the day before he is executed, he repents and goes to confession. Now, should that person go directly to heaven, or should he still be required to serve a certain punishment for all the harm he has done on earth.

Hello,

However, Jesus said to the criminal "Assuredly, I say to you, today you will be with Me in Paradise" (Luke, 23:43). It sounds like the criminal did not have to go through purgatory to be with Jesus.

Stefania
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: ignatius on February 10, 2009, 10:34:15 PM
Hello,

However, Jesus said to the criminal "Assuredly, I say to you, today you will be with Me in Paradise" (Luke, 23:43). It sounds like the criminal did not have to go through purgatory to be with Jesus.

Stefania

Grace and Peace Stefania,

Yes, this is very true but to a devout Roman Catholic it was the the Good Thief's suffering on the cross which expiated his affections for sin. Although all the Israelites left Egypt in effect, not all of them left it in affection, and hence in the wilderness many of them regretted their lack of the onions and fleshpots of Egypt.

In like manner, there are penitents who leave sin in effect, but do not leave it in affection. They resolve never to sin again, but it is with a certain reluctance that they give up or abstain from the fatal delights of sin. Their heart renounces and shuns sin but looks back at it just as Lot's wife looked back at Sodom.

It is this interior affection which Purgatory separates from the soul of those whom lack the perfect contrition of the Good Thief.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: stashko on February 10, 2009, 10:44:57 PM
How does one get 300 days off if there no time there..How does that work ??? ???

The duration (which isn't practiced anymore) was equivalent to the that amount of time of penance made in this life (so, 300 days of penance in this example), it had nothing to do with the "time" spent in purgatory.

That's not what I was taught, and the RCC used an example to illustrate it. I was taught that unconfessed sins and/or sins confessed but not truly regretted equalled a certain amount of time in Purgo. The example the Church used to "help" us believe was the "vision" that one of the Medjugorie girls had from the Virgin Mary. Supposedly, she asked about where an older friend of hers was that had died in her teens or twenties. The Virgin responded that her friend was in Purgo and would remain there for more than 100 years due to her sins. (I think it was a hundred years... :-\) Also, there were special prayers to shave off time in Purgo, or even release the souls altogether. I remember I used to pray a special prayer for the latter. I'll have to find the prayer...

How many times have I heard the bolded text? Clearly you were taught wrong.

1) The Medjugorje "apparitions" are not approved by the Catholic Church.

2) There is no such thing as "time" in Purgatory. Before the reformation of indulgences by Pope Paul VI, indulgences were expressed by periods of time (30 days, etc.), but these did not refer to actual time spent in Purgatory but to the equivalent length of canonical penances performed during the patristic period. So an indulgence of 30 days is equivalent to 30 days of canonical penance in the early Church.

However, Church law on indulgences has changed---indulgences are not expressed by periods of time but simply as "partial indulgences." The amount of purification this indulgence accomplishes depends on the depth of charity with which the indulgences act is done.

Plenary (full) indulgences remain.



Why can't the pope just use his god powers and set everybody free thats their...some of the popes did use there god powers and banished quite a lot of people to hell...Fr. ambrose did bring this up ..not just on caf ..but here on this forum somewhere...Why would the pope waste his time dishing out indulgences..can't he give a general absolution to them,and empty it out...
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: ignatius on February 10, 2009, 10:51:45 PM
Why can't the pope just use his god powers and set everybody free thats their...some of the popes did use there god powers and banished quite a lot of people to hell...Fr. ambrose did bring this up ..not just on caf ..but here on this forum somewhere...

Grace and Peace,

You might be able to take the Israelite out of Egypt, but you can't take Egypt out of the Israelite. Ultimately, salvation is the work of the penitent not the Pope.

Excommunication has always been a most extreme means of correction, even for St. Paul.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: ozgeorge on February 10, 2009, 10:54:09 PM
Why would the pope waste his time dishing out indulgences..can't he give a general absolution to them,and empty it out...
How do you keep a grip on power then?
If you give people everything, they won't fear and respect you.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Stefi on February 10, 2009, 10:55:56 PM
Hello,

However, Jesus said to the criminal "Assuredly, I say to you, today you will be with Me in Paradise" (Luke, 23:43). It sounds like the criminal did not have to go through purgatory to be with Jesus.

Stefania

Grace and Peace Stefania,

Yes, this is very true but to a devout Roman Catholic it was the the Good Thief's suffering on the cross which expiated his affections for sin.

Hello,

I am not sure I understand your post. Did you mean that the thief wasn't truly repenting of his sins and that his physical suffering on the cross was the principal factor in his forgiveness? If I misunderstood, please, explain it to me again. Thanks,

Stefania
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: stashko on February 10, 2009, 10:56:01 PM
Why can't the pope just use his god powers and set everybody free thats their...some of the popes did use there god powers and banished quite a lot of people to hell...Fr. ambrose did bring this up ..not just on caf ..but here on this forum somewhere...

Grace and Peace,

You might be able to take the Israelite out of Egypt, but you can't take Egypt out of the Israelite. Ultimately, salvation is the work of the penitent not the Pope.

Excommunication has always been a most extreme means of correction, even for St. Paul.

Brother...
In orthodoxy at a funeral the body has a absolution prayer said over it by the priest .so the body is absolved of it sins it did in life....hence no purgatory in orthodoxy..........
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: ignatius on February 10, 2009, 11:11:50 PM
Hello,

I am not sure I understand your post. Did you mean that the thief wasn't truly repenting of his sins and that his physical suffering on the cross was the principal factor in his forgiveness? If I misunderstood, please, explain it to me again. Thanks,

Stefania

Grace and Peace,

No, this is not what I meant with what I said. Surely it is clear that the Good Thief was repentant for those crimes in which he was being punished. He recognized his punishment as just and merited. In perfect contrition then he turned to our Lord and Saviour for mercy and it was given him. Glory to Jesus Christ for His mercy.

As the Prayer of Manasseh states: "I have sinned, O Lord, I have sinned, and I acknowledge my transgressions". Before God can deliver us we must undeceive ourselves. This is the distinctions between the Good Thief and that other one on Christ's left.

In accepting his just punishment and enduring it, the Good Thief was cleansed from any affection toward his sinful nature. In the shining face of God there are those whom have nothing built upon that foundation which burns when tested and so Paradise is open to them.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: ignatius on February 10, 2009, 11:17:32 PM
Brother...
In orthodoxy at a funeral the body has a absolution prayer said over it by the priest .so the body is absolved of it sins it did in life....

Grace and Peace,

Without repentance no one will enter Paradise. As Job said so well, "I have heard of thee by the hearing of the ear: but now mine eye seeth thee. Wherefore I abhor myself, and repent in dust and ashes". Absolution presupposes repentance but does not establish it for that is truly the work of the penitential heart standing before the Mercy Seat.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Stefi on February 10, 2009, 11:27:22 PM
Hello,

Thank you ignatius. Would you say that if the thief still had "affection to his sinful nature" it wouldn't have been possible for him to enter Paradise?

Stefania
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: stashko on February 10, 2009, 11:30:29 PM
Peace ...mir boziji...
Christ gave the church the power to absolve sin completely after all Christ is God he liberated us from the old covenant laws..his yoke is light....
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: ignatius on February 10, 2009, 11:46:49 PM
Hello,

Thank you ignatius. Would you say that if the thief still had "affection to his sinful nature" it wouldn't have been possible for him to enter Paradise?

Stefania

Grace and Peace,

If any mans work burn, he shall suffer loss: but he himself shall be saved, yet so as by fire.
- 1 Corinthians 3:15 DRB

It would be the devout Roman Catholic understanding that even with Repentance without Perfect Contrition "he himself shall be saved, yet so as by fire". This is the Catholic teaching regarding this passage and the need of purgation.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: ignatius on February 10, 2009, 11:51:38 PM
Peace ...mir boziji...
Christ gave the church the power to absolve sin completely after all Christ is God he liberated us from the old covenant laws..his yoke is light....

It was St. Maximos the Confessor who once said that "God moves the heart that is willing". I don't believe an unrepentant heart would accept the gifts the Church offers in this case. I believe the Church offers absolution to the soul departed with the hope that it will be received but I have never heard that God or His Church does anything against the will of even an unwilling heart.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: stashko on February 11, 2009, 12:01:17 AM
Peace ...mir boziji...
Christ gave the church the power to absolve sin completely after all Christ is God he liberated us from the old covenant laws..his yoke is light....

It was St. Maximos the Confessor who once said that "God moves the heart that is willing". I don't believe an unrepentant heart would accept the gifts the Church offers in this case. I believe the Church offers absolution to the soul departed with the hope that it will be received but I have never heard that God or His Church does anything against the will of even an unwilling heart.

That's why in orthodoxy there's memorial services ,parastoses.. and other prayers for the departed that avail them much ..even they being mentioned around the time of the holy gift's....God hears His Church's prayer's his right hand has established....
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: lubeltri on February 11, 2009, 12:10:13 AM
Indeed, no one knows if grace moves the heart of a man at his last breath. Our Lord has never revealed to the (Catholic) Church the damnation of any person. Thank God for that. We can only hope and pray for all souls that they are moved to repentance, even at the last moment of their earthly lives.

Ignatius, your explanations here have been excellent. If you do end up leaving us, I will be glad that you will be another Orthodox (like YoungFogey) who at least grasps Catholic teaching on frequently misunderstood topics like the Atonement and Purgatory.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Stefi on February 11, 2009, 12:12:05 AM
Hello,

Thanks again for your reply. I would like to ask those who believe in purgatory: how is it that the thief in the bible passage repented for his sins and lost his sinful nature when Jesus told him he would be taken to Paradise (and i don't think i am satisfied with the answer that it was because of his suffering on the cross) but others repent but still have sinful tendency and have to go through purgatory in order to get to Heaven?
Also, what about Enoch? He didn't go to purgatory...

Stefania
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: ignatius on February 11, 2009, 12:14:13 AM
That's why in orthodoxy there's memorial services ,parastoses.. and other prayers for the departed that avail them much ..even they being mentioned around the time of the holy gift's....God hear's His churche's prayer's his right hand has established....

I have no doubt that there are those whom would greatly benefit from these. I simply fail to see why we must argue the point that such works are efficacious for the unrepentant souls. Perhaps you believe in apokatastasis and thus believe that 'all souls' will ultimately be restored? In the West, this teaching has largely been enfolded within the Dogma of Purgatory and those whom pass from this world unrepentant also pass by the cleansing fires and enter the dark.


Therefore is the kingdom of heaven likened to a king, who would take an account of his servants... Then his lord called him; and said to him: Thou wicked servant, I forgave thee all the debt, because thou besoughtest me: Shouldst not thou then have had compassion also on thy fellow servant, even as I had compassion on thee? And his lord being angry, delivered him to the torturers until he paid all the debt.

To the devout Roman Catholic this passage speaks of Purgatory since it speaks ultimately of the Kingdom. All who enter the cleansing fire see the light of the heavenly realm from afar but in them is the solace of certain salvation to come.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: stashko on February 11, 2009, 12:22:08 AM
Brother somewhere on this forum it is discussed ,, what you just mentioned about the fire that cleanses. i can't remember where though...
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: ignatius on February 11, 2009, 12:25:19 AM
Hello,

Thanks again for your reply. I would like to ask those who believe in purgatory: how is it that the thief in the bible passage repented for his sins and lost his sinful nature when Jesus told him he would be taken to Paradise (and i don't think i am satisfied with the answer that it was because of his suffering on the cross) but others repent but still have sinful tendency and have to go through purgatory in order to get to Heaven?

Also, what about Enoch? He didn't go to purgatory...

Stefania

Grace and Peace,

I am not her to satisfy you and convince you of the Dogma of Purgatory. I am simply offering to you, as much as I am able, the cogent teaching as it is understood by devout Roman Catholics.

As I stated earlier, with Perfect Contrition for our sins there is no temporal wound to be mended through the Holy Labors of Penance. There exist within the varying degrees of Perfection in this world states in which no purgation of affection to our fallen nature is needed. Not everyone experiences Purgatory but it is thought by some Latin Fathers that most do before entering Paradise.

Perhaps Enoch walked with God in such a perfected state that no purgation was necessary? Truly we must both agree the number of such individuals are quite rare indeed as only two are found in the Sacred Texts (Enoch and Elijah).
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: ignatius on February 11, 2009, 12:27:14 AM
Brother somewhere on this forum it is discussed ,, what you just mentioned about the fire that cleanses. i can't remember where though...

Yes, Mickey and I struggled with this very passage in the thread "Repentance and/or penance after the repose of the soul". It is truly a challenging topic.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: lubeltri on February 11, 2009, 01:01:56 AM
Hello Stefi,

Here are some answers which might help:

Why did Jesus take the good thief immediately to paradise without his going to purgatory? My Protestant friends use this example of the good thief to deny the existence of purgatory.

The beautiful recounting of the words of Jesus to the good thief (Luke 23:43), to whom legend gives the name St. Dismas, tells us nothing about purgatory, either for the thief or for us. It is possible the suffering of the thief on the cross and his intense contrition and love were sufficient to expiate all the temporal punishment that was due to his sins. Also, we have no idea about he duration of purgatory in temporal terms. Jesus said "Amen I say to you, this day you will be with me in paradise". But the Bible says, "… one day with the Lord is as a thousand years and a thousand years as one day." (2 Peter 3:8 ) How long in our kind of measurement was "this day" of which Christ spoke? Jesus Himself ascended into heaven only forty days after His resurrection (Acts of the Apostles 1:3). Your Protestant friends are off the mark in their efforts to disprove what Sacred Tradition and Sacred Scripture clearly affirm, the existence of purgatory.
http://www.dioceseoflincoln.org/purple/purgatory/index.htm#2

-

From the Catechism of the Catholic Church:

1472 To understand this doctrine and practice of the Church, it is necessary to understand that sin has a double consequence. Grave sin deprives us of communion with God and therefore makes us incapable of eternal life, the privation of which is called the "eternal punishment" of sin. On the other hand every sin, even venial, entails an unhealthy attachment to creatures, which must be purified either here on earth, or after death in the state called Purgatory. This purification frees one from what is called the "temporal punishment" of sin. These two punishments must not be conceived of as a kind of vengeance inflicted by God from without, but as following from the very nature of sin. A conversion which proceeds from a fervent charity can attain the complete purification of the sinner in such a way that no punishment would remain.

If the thief on the cross did not go to Purgatory (not certain since Purgatory does not need to be a temporal place---he could have gone through Purgatory in an instant and joined Jesus in paradise that very day), then he may have faced his sufferings with perfect charity and contrition. Considering his sufferings (no less than crucifixion at the side of Jesus Christ!), I would not be surprised if all the lingering effects of sin were expiated from him and he was purified.




Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Mickey on February 11, 2009, 10:08:23 AM
If any mans work burn, he shall suffer loss: but he himself shall be saved, yet so as by fire.
- 1 Corinthians 3:15 DRB

It would be the devout Roman Catholic understanding that even with Repentance without Perfect Contrition "he himself shall be saved, yet so as by fire". This is the Catholic teaching regarding this passage and the need of purgation.

Works are being tested in this passage. I do not see anything regarding purification of sins or temporal punishment after repose.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Papist on February 11, 2009, 10:51:21 AM
If any mans work burn, he shall suffer loss: but he himself shall be saved, yet so as by fire.
- 1 Corinthians 3:15 DRB

It would be the devout Roman Catholic understanding that even with Repentance without Perfect Contrition "he himself shall be saved, yet so as by fire". This is the Catholic teaching regarding this passage and the need of purgation.

Works are being tested in this passage. I do not see anything regarding purification of sins or temporal punishment after repose.
Are the testing of the works not a sign of a person's inward sanctity? I think you are being ultra literal here.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: ignatius on February 11, 2009, 01:33:03 PM
If any mans work burn, he shall suffer loss: but he himself shall be saved, yet so as by fire.
- 1 Corinthians 3:15 DRB

It would be the devout Roman Catholic understanding that even with Repentance without Perfect Contrition "he himself shall be saved, yet so as by fire". This is the Catholic teaching regarding this passage and the need of purgation.

Works are being tested in this passage. I do not see anything regarding purification of sins or temporal punishment after repose.

Grace and Peace,

The hope of apokatastasis would involve the purification of unrepentant sins during one's life 'after death'. My guess is you don't hold to this hope? From my studies the Roman Catholic dogma of Purgatory was an attempt to 'couch' this hope of apokatastasis within a framework which did no violence to the teachings of Judgment immediately after one's death as well as the eternal nature of the fires of Gehenna. Remember, Purgatory in it's Latin Theological understanding 'is' part of Hell. The cleansing fires of Purgatory and those of Gehenna are from the same "source". So in the Classic Latin teaching of Hell we would be speaking of not 'only' Gehenna (i.e. the Pit) but also the two Limbos and Purgatory. As I understand it in Orthodox Theology Sheol and Gehenna are recognized as separate in a similar manner.

Because of the nature of Judgment and the necessity of repentance before our death, any purgation would have to be of affections toward sin (i.e. the temporal wounds toward Love of God and Neighbor) and not the remission of sin itself in order for one to enter heaven perfect or, if you will, manifest perfection in the presence of God. Perhaps in Orthodoxy this distinction is not made but if we were to attempt to establish an argument for apokatastasis we are going to do violence to some of the normative readings of the Sacred Text.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Mickey on February 11, 2009, 01:42:21 PM
The hope of apokatastasis would involve the purification of unrepentant sins during one's life 'after death'. My guess is you don't hold to this hope?

It has nothing to do with a guess. I have never seen anything in Scriptural or patristic sources that tells us that we need a cleansing of temporal sins after we repose.


St. Paul said that we “were bought at a price” (1 Cor 6:20). – This price is the precious blood of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ who said on the cross “It is finished” (Jn 19:30). – The sufferings and torments in this alleged purgatory imply that the price of sins will be paid twice, which is in clear contradiction with the Divine Justice. Moreover, according to this doctrine, the purgatory is a place of torment of the spirits while the bodies are lying in the graves not feeling a thing. This also contradicts the Divine Justice because it implies punishing the spirit only and not the body that participated with it in committing the sin and may even have been the cause of it as “the flesh lusts against the Spirit” (Gal 5:17). – Also, how will the allegedly purged spirit be united with an un-purged body on the Last day?
Pope Shenouda
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: ignatius on February 11, 2009, 02:17:32 PM
It has nothing to do with a guess. I have never seen anything in Scriptural or patristic sources that tells us that we need a cleansing of temporal sins after we repose.

St. Paul said that we “were bought at a price” (1 Cor 6:20). – This price is the precious blood of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ who said on the cross “It is finished” (Jn 19:30). – The sufferings and torments in this alleged purgatory imply that the price of sins will be paid twice, which is in clear contradiction with the Divine Justice. Moreover, according to this doctrine, the purgatory is a place of torment of the spirits while the bodies are lying in the graves not feeling a thing. This also contradicts the Divine Justice because it implies punishing the spirit only and not the body that participated with it in committing the sin and may even have been the cause of it as “the flesh lusts against the Spirit” (Gal 5:17). – Also, how will the allegedly purged spirit be united with an un-purged body on the Last day?
Pope Shenouda

Grace and Peace,

This topic would have to broaden to discuss sin and the process of sanctification in Roman Catholic Theology for you to understand what we are saying. When our Lord said that 'even if we looked at a woman with lust we have committed adultery' He illuminated for those of His day the source of sin not in actions but ground ultimately within the will of the sinner. In Roman Catholic Theology this attraction to sin (i.e. concupiscence) is an imperfection which ultimately opens us to unclean thoughts and into sinful desires. I'm not a Catholic Theologian or Scholar but much of this understanding is taught in any pursuit of a life of devotion or Perfection (i.e. holiness).

Pope Shenouda seems to see this in an almost forensic manner not unlike Protestant Theology. Is this acceptable in Orthodoxy? Everything that I have been exposed to would suggest it is not...
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Mickey on February 11, 2009, 02:31:06 PM
This topic would have to broaden to discuss sin and the process of sanctification in Roman Catholic Theology for you to understand what we are saying. When our Lord said that 'even if we looked at a woman with lust we have committed adultery' He illuminated for those of His day the source of sin not in actions but ground ultimately within the will of the sinner. In Roman Catholic Theology this attraction to sin (i.e. concupiscence) is an imperfection which ultimately opens us to unclean thoughts and into sinful desires. I'm not a Catholic Theologian or Scholar but much of this understanding is taught in any pursuit of a life of devotion or Perfection (i.e. holiness).

The purgatory contradicts God’s Mercy: David the Prophet said, “Purge me with hyssop, and I shall be clean; wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow.” (Ps 51:7) He did not say ‘purge me with fire, burn me in purgatory and I shall be clean.’ Human nature is not purged with fire but rather with the grace of our merciful God and the work of His Holy spirit. Our Lord said, “Though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they are red like crimson, they shall be as wool.” (Is 1:18) – This will not occur through the tormenting flames of purgatory after departing from this world but rather through the work of the Holy Spirit in repentance during this present life. “Then I will sprinkle clean water on you, and you shall be clean; I will cleanse you from all your filthiness and from all your idols.” (Ezek 36:25) Purging is an act of mercy and grace not of punishment, it takes place here on earth not after death, and it is through clean water not tormenting flames of fire! The purgatory contradicts God’s Promises: Through the precious blood of Lord Jesus Christ and the work of the Holy Spirit in repentance, God forgives our sins and no longer remembers them: “If a wicked man turns from all his sins … none of the transgressions which he has committed shall be remembered against him …” (Ezek 18:21,22) “… Having wiped out the handwriting of requirements that was against us, which was contrary to us. And He has taken it out of the way, having nailed it to the cross.” (Col 2:14) The purgatory implies that the spirits of the believers will have to suffer prior to going to heaven even though God has promised to forgive and forget their sins. Notice that in the parable of the creditor and the two debtors, which the Lord Jesus Christ said to Simon the Pharisee, the creditor “freely forgave” both debtors; the one who owed five hundred denarii and the one who owed fifty because “they had nothing with which to repay” (Lk 7:42)6. The purgatory contradicts Holy Scriptures: The doctrine of purgatory does not possess any Scriptural basis but rather contradicts Holy Scriptures creating several theological problems: Our Lord said to the right thief, “Assuredly, I say to you, today you will be with Me in Paradise.” (Lk 23:43) – Now, if this alleged purgatory indeed exists, why then didn’t the thief go there?  “And the dead in Christ will rise first. Then we who are alive and remain will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And thus we shall always be with the Lord.” (1 Thess 4:16,17) – Here St. Paul describes the Last Day saying that those faithful who are still alive will meet the Lord with those who rise from the dead and then remain with Him always. Are these faithful exempt from purgatory? Is God showing partiality towards them? In the story of the rich man and Lazarus (Lk 16:19-31) we read about two places; one for comfort and the other for torment. Moreover, there is a great gulf fixed between the two that prevents people from moving from one place to the other. Now where is it mentioned that there is such a purgatory? The Roman Church falsely teaches that there is a ‘particular’ judgment that takes place after one’s death during which the eternal fate is determined. The ungodly will be sent to hell, the saints will be sent to heaven and the majority of the faithful will be sent to purgatory to be tormented until they become worthy of entering heaven. Now this contradicts Holy Scripture that testifies that there is only one general judgment on the Last Day for all (Mt 16:27; 25:46; Jn 5:28,29; Rev 20:11-15)Pope Shenouda

Pope Shenouda seems to see this in an almost forensic manner not unlike Protestant Theology.

Pope Shenouda is protestant in his theology? I think not. Perhaps the protestants got some things right.  ;)
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: ignatius on February 11, 2009, 02:39:11 PM
The purgatory contradicts God’s Mercy: David the Prophet said, “Purge me with hyssop, and I shall be clean; wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow.” (Ps 51:7) He did not say ‘purge me with fire, burn me in purgatory and I shall be clean.’ Human nature is not purged with fire but rather with the grace of our merciful God and the work of His Holy spirit. Our Lord said, “Though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they are red like crimson, they shall be as wool.” (Is 1:18) – This will not occur through the tormenting flames of purgatory after departing from this world but rather through the work of the Holy Spirit in repentance during this present life. “Then I will sprinkle clean water on you, and you shall be clean; I will cleanse you from all your filthiness and from all your idols.” (Ezek 36:25) Purging is an act of mercy and grace not of punishment, it takes place here on earth not after death, and it is through clean water not tormenting flames of fire! The purgatory contradicts God’s Promises: Through the precious blood of Lord Jesus Christ and the work of the Holy Spirit in repentance, God forgives our sins and no longer remembers them: “If a wicked man turns from all his sins … none of the transgressions which he has committed shall be remembered against him …” (Ezek 18:21,22) “… Having wiped out the handwriting of requirements that was against us, which was contrary to us. And He has taken it out of the way, having nailed it to the cross.” (Col 2:14) The purgatory implies that the spirits of the believers will have to suffer prior to going to heaven even though God has promised to forgive and forget their sins. Notice that in the parable of the creditor and the two debtors, which the Lord Jesus Christ said to Simon the Pharisee, the creditor “freely forgave” both debtors; the one who owed five hundred denarii and the one who owed fifty because “they had nothing with which to repay” (Lk 7:42)6. The purgatory contradicts Holy Scriptures: The doctrine of purgatory does not possess any Scriptural basis but rather contradicts Holy Scriptures creating several theological problems: Our Lord said to the right thief, “Assuredly, I say to you, today you will be with Me in Paradise.” (Lk 23:43) – Now, if this alleged purgatory indeed exists, why then didn’t the thief go there?  “And the dead in Christ will rise first. Then we who are alive and remain will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And thus we shall always be with the Lord.” (1 Thess 4:16,17) – Here St. Paul describes the Last Day saying that those faithful who are still alive will meet the Lord with those who rise from the dead and then remain with Him always. Are these faithful exempt from purgatory? Is God showing partiality towards them? In the story of the rich man and Lazarus (Lk 16:19-31) we read about two places; one for comfort and the other for torment. Moreover, there is a great gulf fixed between the two that prevents people from moving from one place to the other. Now where is it mentioned that there is such a purgatory? The Roman Church falsely teaches that there is a ‘particular’ judgment that takes place after one’s death during which the eternal fate is determined. The ungodly will be sent to hell, the saints will be sent to heaven and the majority of the faithful will be sent to purgatory to be tormented until they become worthy of entering heaven. Now this contradicts Holy Scripture that testifies that there is only one general judgment on the Last Day for all (Mt 16:27; 25:46; Jn 5:28,29; Rev 20:11-15)Pope Shenouda

Well Mickey I can tell you reading this I, personally, would have to disagree with Pope Shenouda. Does he also use the same argument to discredit Orthodox River of Fire Theorists? What room does his theology have for the hope of apokatastasis?

Quote
Pope Shenouda seems to see this in an almost forensic manner not unlike Protestant Theology.

Pope Shenouda is protestant in his theology? I think not. Perhaps the protestants got some things right.  ;)

Well I've been Protestant and I didn't think that they got a whole lot right. Sorry I don't find this line of argument convincing and am frankly surprised that such a narrow forensic view of salvation would be offered as Orthodox.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Mickey on February 11, 2009, 03:15:26 PM
Well Mickey I can tell you reading this I, personally, would have to disagree with Pope Shenouda.

You are certainly entitled to disagree--just as I disagree with the Latin definitions.

Well I've been Protestant and I didn't think that they got a whole lot right.

I have never been protestant--and when they separated from the Latin Catholic Church, they fell into many and varied heresies. But they got more correct than you give them credit for.

Sorry I don't find this line of argument convincing and am frankly surprised that such a narrow forensic view of salvation would be offered as Orthodox.

Hmmm? Narrow forensic view? Is that juridical speak?  :laugh:

I believe it is called the Scriptural and patristic view. Here's more for your pleasure.

St. Paul said, “If anyone’s work is burned, he will suffer loss; but he himself will be saved, yet so as through fire.” (1 Cor 3:15) – Does this fire refer to the purgatory?  No it does not for the following reasons: This fire is for works and not individuals “the fire will test each one’s work” (1 Cor 3:13). This fire is for testing not tormenting. This fire will be on the Last Day “for the Day will declare it, because it will be revealed by fire” (1 Cor 3:13) while the alleged fire of purgatory is supposedly prior to the Last Day. This fire will cause loss “if anyone’s work is burned, he will suffer loss” (1 Cor 3:15) while the fire of purgatory allegedly purifies the faithful and prepares them to go to heaven. The words “he himself will be saved, yet so as through fire” signify that this person will be scarcely saved – “If the righteous one is scarcely saved, where will the ungodly and sinner appear?” (1 Pet 4:18) –This symbolic fire brings to mind what was said about Joshua the high priest during his life on earth, “Is this not a brand plucked from the fire?” (Zech 3:2)

 Our Lord said, “whoever speaks against the Holy Spirit, it will not be forgiven him, either in this age or in the age to come.” (Mt 12:32) – What is the forgiveness in the age to come? The forgiveness in the age to come applies to those who were wrongly excommunicated by the Church in this age also anyone who repents but for whatever reason could not confess and dies without hearing the forgiveness from the priest in this age. Their forgiveness will be declared or announced in the age to come. Our Lord said, “Agree with your adversary quickly, while you are on the way with him, lest your adversary deliver you to the judge, the judge hand you over to the officer, and you be thrown into prison. Assuredly, I say to you, you will by no means get out of there till you have paid the last penny.” (Mt 5:25,26) – Is this prison the purgatory?  No it is not.If our Lord’s words were taken literally, then they are referring to social dealings between people. Now, if they were interpreted symbolically they will not refer to purgatory either. Because all the Church fathers who interpreted this portion of the Sermon on the Mount symbolically did not refer to purgatory at all. The words “till you have paid the last penny” are interpreted as meaning “never” – Thus the Judge is God, the officer is an angel, and the prison is eternal hell. This is obvious from the parable of the unforgiving servant who owed his master ten thousand talents (Mt 18:24) and was not able to pay (Mt 18:25) yet in spite of being forgiven this huge dept, he did not have compassion on his fellow servant who owed him only a hundred denarii. Thus his master “delivered him to the torturers until he should pay all that was due to him.” (Mt 18:34)This parable was referring to the eternal punishment of those who do not forgive others and even though our Lord said, “until he should pay” we know that this is an impossibility because our Lord initially said, “he was not able to pay” (Mat 18:25) – Moreover, if this prison were purgatory, how will the spirit alone be able to pay the last penny without the body, which was the accomplice in committing sin?
H.H. Pope Shenouda


Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Asteriktos on February 11, 2009, 03:41:15 PM
Quote
I have never seen anything in Scriptural or patristic sources that tells us that we need a cleansing of temporal sins after we repose.

Keep reading... ;)
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Mickey on February 11, 2009, 03:44:02 PM
Quote
I have never seen anything in Scriptural or patristic sources that tells us that we need a cleansing of temporal sins after we repose.

Keep reading... ;)

Are you saying that you agree with the Latin doctrine.......or are you being sarcastic?  :-\
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Asteriktos on February 11, 2009, 04:26:07 PM
Neither, actually. :) It's just that I've come across Fathers who do speak of a cleansing or purification in the after life. That doesn't necessarily equate to Pugatory, but if you type something like "purgatory church fathers" into Google you'll get webpages with patristic quotes. And I'd again quote St. Mark of Ephesus, who said:

Quote
But if souls have departed this life in faith and love, while nevertheless carrying away with themselves certain faults, whether small ones over which they have no repented at all, or great ones for which--even though they have repented over them--they did not undertake to show fruits of repentance: such souls, we believe, must be cleansed from this kind of sins, but not by means of some purgatorial fire or a definite punishment in some place (for this, as we have said, has not at all be handed down to us). But some must be cleansed in the very departure from the body, thanks only to fear, as St. Gregory the Dialogist literally shows; while others must be cleansed after the departure from the body, either while remaining in the same earthly place, before they come to worship God and are honored with the lot of the blessed, or--if their sins were more serious and bind them for a longer duration--they are kept in [hades], but not in order to remain forever in fire and torment, but as it were in prison and confinement under guard.

All such ones, we affirm, are helped by the prayers and Liturgies performed for them, with the cooperation of the Divine goodness and love for mankind. This Divine cooperation immediately disdains and remits some sins, those committed out of human weakness, as Dionysius the Great (the Areopagite) says in 'Reflections on the Mystery of Those Reposed in Faith' (In 'The Ecclesiastical Hierarchy, 7, 7); while other sins, after a certain time, by righteous judgments it either likewise releases and forgives--and that completely--or lightens the responsibility for them until that final judgment. And therefore we see no necessity whatever for any other punishment or for a cleansing fire; for some are cleansed by fear, while others are devoured by gnawings of conscience with more torment than any fire, and still others are cleansed only the the very terror before the Divine Glory and the uncertainty as to what the future will be...

And so, we intreat God and believe to deliver the departed from (eternal torment), and not from any other torment or fire apart from those torments and that fire which have been proclaimed to be forever. And that, moreover, the souls of the departed are delivered by prayers from confinement in [hades], as if from a certain prison, is testified, among many others, by Theophanes the Confessor, called the Branded. ...In one of the canons for the reposed he thus prays for them: 'Deliver, O Savior, Thy slaves who are in the [hades] of tears and sighing' (Octoechos, Saturday canon for the deposed, Tone 8, Canticle 6, Glory). - St. Mark of Ephesus, First Homily on the Refutation of the Latin Chapters Concerning Purgatorial Fire

Notice that the thing that St. Mark objects to is a purging or cleansing fire. But he does not object to the basic idea that there can be sins which we need to be cleansed of after our repose. Indeed, he outlines numerous ways in which we can be cleansed from such sins.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: ignatius on February 11, 2009, 04:29:32 PM
Hmmm? Narrow forensic view? Is that juridical speak?  :laugh:

I believe it is called the Scriptural and patristic view. Here's more for your pleasure.

St. Paul said, “If anyone’s work is burned, he will suffer loss; but he himself will be saved, yet so as through fire.” (1 Cor 3:15) – Does this fire refer to the purgatory?  No it does not for the following reasons: This fire is for works and not individuals “the fire will test each one’s work” (1 Cor 3:13). This fire is for testing not tormenting. This fire will be on the Last Day “for the Day will declare it, because it will be revealed by fire” (1 Cor 3:13) while the alleged fire of purgatory is supposedly prior to the Last Day. This fire will cause loss “if anyone’s work is burned, he will suffer loss” (1 Cor 3:15) while the fire of purgatory allegedly purifies the faithful and prepares them to go to heaven. The words “he himself will be saved, yet so as through fire” signify that this person will be scarcely saved – “If the righteous one is scarcely saved, where will the ungodly and sinner appear?” (1 Pet 4:18) –This symbolic fire brings to mind what was said about Joshua the high priest during his life on earth, “Is this not a brand plucked from the fire?” (Zech 3:2)

 Our Lord said, “whoever speaks against the Holy Spirit, it will not be forgiven him, either in this age or in the age to come.” (Mt 12:32) – What is the forgiveness in the age to come? The forgiveness in the age to come applies to those who were wrongly excommunicated by the Church in this age also anyone who repents but for whatever reason could not confess and dies without hearing the forgiveness from the priest in this age. Their forgiveness will be declared or announced in the age to come. Our Lord said, “Agree with your adversary quickly, while you are on the way with him, lest your adversary deliver you to the judge, the judge hand you over to the officer, and you be thrown into prison. Assuredly, I say to you, you will by no means get out of there till you have paid the last penny.” (Mt 5:25,26) – Is this prison the purgatory?  No it is not.If our Lord’s words were taken literally, then they are referring to social dealings between people. Now, if they were interpreted symbolically they will not refer to purgatory either. Because all the Church fathers who interpreted this portion of the Sermon on the Mount symbolically did not refer to purgatory at all. The words “till you have paid the last penny” are interpreted as meaning “never” – Thus the Judge is God, the officer is an angel, and the prison is eternal hell. This is obvious from the parable of the unforgiving servant who owed his master ten thousand talents (Mt 18:24) and was not able to pay (Mt 18:25) yet in spite of being forgiven this huge dept, he did not have compassion on his fellow servant who owed him only a hundred denarii. Thus his master “delivered him to the torturers until he should pay all that was due to him.” (Mt 18:34)This parable was referring to the eternal punishment of those who do not forgive others and even though our Lord said, “until he should pay” we know that this is an impossibility because our Lord initially said, “he was not able to pay” (Mat 18:25) – Moreover, if this prison were purgatory, how will the spirit alone be able to pay the last penny without the body, which was the accomplice in committing sin?
H.H. Pope Shenouda

Grace and Peace,

Pope Shenouda seems to take it upon himself to stretch the Sacred Texts in an effort to contradict no only the Dogma of Purgatory but any sense of just recompense and then appears to also shut the gate to any kind of hope for apokatastasis. I can honestly tell you that I 'hope' for apokatastasis not at the expense of justice for mercy but in the mercy that is God's Justice. I believe at this point your tone has turned a bit and don't believe this will be constructive for either of us. You seem to be entrenching yourself in opposition and I will attempt to not follow suite. I will only say that I don't agree with Pope Shenouda and don't believe that his work is particular informed by the patristic witness. He offers nothing besides his interpretation of the Sacred Text to oppose the Roman Church and in a very narrow way that I don't find in the early church.

I will not offer further counter argument but I have no problem pointing to St. Catherine of Genoa's treatise on Purgation and Purgatory.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Mickey on February 11, 2009, 04:49:55 PM
I will only say that I don't agree with Pope Shenouda and don't believe that his work is particular informed by the patristic witness.

You should prove that before you accuse the man.

He offers nothing besides his interpretation of the Sacred Text to oppose the Roman Church and in a very narrow way

And many others find nothing in the Latin Catholic interpretation of this later defined doctrine except a narrow juridical and innovative theology.

I will not offer further counter argument but I have no problem pointing to St. Catherine of Genoa's treatise on Purgation and Purgatory.

And I could play Church Father tit for tat with you...but I do not have the time...and you seem to be getting angry.

It is your tone that is changing, Chris.  When someone does not agree with your understanding of the Latin definition of purgatory---you become very defensive and start yelling “apokatastasis” over and over again.

But then I digress. I got sucked into another purgatory thread! Go figure!

Frankly Chris, I am merely setting forth some Eastern Orthodox and Coptic Orthodox understandings for your consumption.  As you know, the Holy Orthodox Church does not recognize this post schism “developed doctrine” of purgatory.  You are attached to the Latin juridical explanation. You are free to accept it as you wish. Orthodox Christians are not really compelled to explain or refute something that we do not know. There are  many Orthodox Christians who do not even consider talking about the Latin Catholic doctrine of purgatory.

A voice once came to St Antony the Great when he was having anxiety about divine providence:

‘Antony, attend to yourself; for these are the judgments of God, and it is not for you to know them’ (Apophthegmata (P.G. 65), Antony, 2).
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: ignatius on February 11, 2009, 05:24:58 PM

It is your tone that is changing, Chris.  When someone does not agree with your understanding of the Latin definition of purgatory---you become very defensive and start yelling “apokatastasis” over and over again.

I don't believe this is a fair description of my tone or my manner in this thread. I am not yelling "apokatastasis" I am simply asking in the narrowly defined theology you are offering "where is there room for apokatastasis"? You haven't answered that for us, Mickey.

This is where I find Orthodox apologetics willing to counter their own tradition in order to score points in a debate. I don't see how Pope Shenouda theology with say that of Bishop Kalistos Ware. How do that assert shared communion when they have such diverse and opposing theologies? In Pope Shenouda's theology Bishop's hopes are dashed.

Quote
Frankly Chris, I am merely setting forth some Eastern Orthodox and Coptic Orthodox understandings for your consumption.  As you know, the Holy Orthodox Church does not recognize this post schism “developed doctrine” of purgatory.  You are attached to the Latin juridical explanation. You are free to accept it as you wish. Orthodox Christians are not really compelled to explain or refute something that we do not know. There are  many Orthodox Christians who do not even consider talking about the Latin Catholic doctrine of purgatory.

Oh, I am the first one to admit that I am attached to Latin Theology. If I was not I would already a catechumanate in Orthodoxy but I would argue that you have overstepped your bounds in countering the Roman Dogma of Purgatory and I would continue to argue that Pope Shenouda has also do so as well. This is where Polemics have Blinded sound refutation and I am simply pointing it out. I'm not saying that because Orthodoxy teaches a hope for apokatastasis that they must support the Latin Dogma of Purgatory but I am saying that is refuting Purgatory that the Orthodox shouldn't refute their own teaching in order to do so.

Quote
A voice once came to St Antony the Great when he was having anxiety about divine providence:

‘Antony, attend to yourself; for these are the judgments of God, and it is not for you to know them’ (Apophthegmata (P.G. 65), Antony, 2).

Very beautifully quoted.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: scamandrius on February 11, 2009, 06:43:03 PM
In other words, the doctrine of indulgences is connected more explicitly to the Papal powers then to the essence of Purgatory.

Exactly my point that I was trying to make.  This whole thing is ludicrous simply because it is determined by the whims of individual men (i.e. popes), none of whom are entrusted with the powers that the Roman Church claims that they have, ever.  And that is why we see patently ridiculous statements from various popes about how 15 minutes of reading Scripture=300 days less in purgatory or however that formula is supposed to work.  It is reduced to totally arbitrary standards depending on whom is wearing the Papal mitre.  And good, honest people (i.e. faithful Catholics) are still being sucked and tricked into this whole thing! ???
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: ignatius on February 11, 2009, 10:41:11 PM
Exactly my point that I was trying to make.  This whole thing is ludicrous simply because it is determined by the whims of individual men (i.e. popes), none of whom are entrusted with the powers that the Roman Church claims that they have, ever.  And that is why we see patently ridiculous statements from various popes about how 15 minutes of reading Scripture=300 days less in purgatory or however that formula is supposed to work.  It is reduced to totally arbitrary standards depending on whom is wearing the Papal mitre.  And good, honest people (i.e. faithful Catholics) are still being sucked and tricked into this whole thing! ???

Grace and Peace,

Boy are you folks pulling me into all sorts of corrections as to exactly what the Roman Church actually teaches.

If purgatory is one of the most difficult Catholic doctrines for non-Catholics to understand, then the Church's teaching on indulgences must be equally difficult. One reason is that the terms "purgatory" and "indulgence" are not found in the Sacred Text. In order to appreciate the doctrine of indulgences, it is necessary first to understand what the Church teaches about purgatory.

Among the Sacred Texts used in explaining the doctrine on purgatory, the clearest is found in 2 Maccabees. The incident concerns the aftermath of a battle between the Jews, lead by Judas Maccabeus, and the Edomites. Judas and his men, collecting the bodies of their fallen, discovered sacred tokens (i.e. idols) under their tunics. Recognizing that these men had died in sin, "they turned to prayer, beseeching that the sin which had been committed might be wholly blotted out. And the noble Judas exhorted the people to keep themselves free from sin... He also took up a collection, man by man, to the amount of two thousand drachmas of silver, and sent it to Jerusalem to provide for a sin offering. In doing this, he acted very well and honorably, taking account of the resurrection. For if he were not expecting that those who had fallen would rise again, it would have been superfluous and foolish to pray for the dead. But if he was looking to the splendid reward that is laid up for those who fall asleep in godliness, it was a holy and pious thought. Therefore, he made atonement for the dead, that they might be delivered from their sin" (2 Mc 12:42-45).

The central point is that it is good to pray for the dead. Perhaps in this we can all agree. If, however, there are only a heaven and a hell, it makes no point: For if the dead are in heaven, they do not need prayers; and if they are in hell (i.e. Gehenna), prayer will be of no avail. So the Sacred Texts appear to many to pin us. At the heart of the Roman Church's teaching on purgatory, then, is the realization that, from the time a person dies until he or she reaches heaven, both the faithful on earth and the saints in heaven can assist that person with their prayers. Thus, purgatory is directly related to the doctrine of sin and so to the effects of the sacrament of Penance.

Beyond the reference in 2 Maccabees, the Sacred Texts offer insights on individual concerversion. Alienation from God by sinning may not necessarily be overcome by a single act of repentance. In point of fact, an act of judgment may be the cause for the final conversion of the sinner. Thus my point about mercy in just punishment. The Sacred Texts also offer instances where, although a sin may be confessed and the guilt forgiven, God still imposes punishments that are not canceled (Gn 3:17-19: Nm 20:12, 27:13; 2 Sm 12:10-14). If this be the case, then it cannot be said that God's forgiveness of guilt always includes as well the remission of the punishment due to those sins. Intercessory Prayer is also documented in the Sacred Texts, with limits set only by the providential will of God and the free will of the person for whom the prayers are being offered.

From the second century A.D. onward, there are accounts of sinners performing intense acts of penance for their sins committed after Baptism. This practice was monitored by the Church, as she regulated the penances by discipline adapted to the individual penitent. Penances could be shortened for some by the intercession of their confessors, and those awaiting martyrdom could offer their salutary acts for others.

By the Middle Ages, the practice of frequent confession led to some mitigation of penances and allowed penitents to perform "redemptory" works. In addition to the private prayers and works of individuals, the public, liturgical prayers of the Church including intercession for sinners. By the eleventh century, the Roman Church was teaching that she could and did officially intervene on behalf of the penitent. Such intervention, replacing some of the individual's penance, was an act of intercession seen in light of the totality of the Body of Christ. These first "indulgences" were acts of jurisdiction, meaning that the real canonical penance was remitted. They were outside the sacrament of Penance, yet involved punishments due to sins that had been confessed. Here, for the first time, the penance of the individual and the intercessory work of the Church were directly connected. It is this which consitituted indulgences as such.

Central to the doctrine on indulgences is the fact that every sin affects the Christian in three ways: 1.) it disrupts his relationship with God; 2.)it disturbs his relationship with his neighbors (i.e. the rest of the Church); and 3.) it unsettles him internally (i.e. it creates disorder). The first requires sacramental confession and absolution; the second requires restoration; the third requires that he work daily on his ongoing conversion, striving to be perfect as is his heavenly Father. The CCC says: "To understand this doctrine and practice of the Church, it is necessary to understand that sin has a double consequence." This was why St. Athanasus argued the necessity of the Incarnation by God Himself. To restore within human nature the Trinitarian likeness. It was not simply the case of forgiving a fault but the restoration of access to the Divine Nature for Immortality. Grave sin deprives us of communion with the Godhead and therefore makes us incapable of sharing in Immortality, the privation of which is called the 'eternal punishment' of sin. One the other had, every sin, even venial (i.e. very little errors), entails an unhealthy attachment to creatures, which must be purified either here on earth through ascesis, or after death in the cleansing fires (purgation). This purification frees one from what is often called in Latin Theology "temporal punishments" of sin. We might also look upon it as the 'reordering' of the imperfect to perfect ordering. As St. Paul appears to point out: Every such shall suffer a loss, when his works are burnt, but he himself shall be saved, yet so as by fire. Here the apostle speaks of fire in a more ample signification: of a fire which shall not only try, and examine, but also burn, and punish the builders, who notwithstanding shall also, after a time, escape from the fire, and be saved by fire, and in the day of the Lord, that is, after life. Divers ancient Fathers, as well as later interpreters, from these words, argue for the doctrine of a purgation, that is, that many Christians, who die guilty, not of heinous or mortal sins, but of lesser, and what are often called venial sins, or to whom a temporal punishment for the sins they have committed, still remains due, before they can be admitted to a reward in heaven, (into which nothing defiled or unclean can enter) must suffer some punishments for a time, in some state, which is called Purgatory in Latin Theology, and in such a manner, as is agreeable to the divine justice, before their reward in heaven. These words of the apostle, the Latin Fathers in the Council of Florence brought against the Greeks to prove purgatory, to which the Greeks (who did not deny a purgatory, or a middle state, where souls guilty of lesser sins were to suffer for a time) made answer that these words of St. Paul were expounded by St. Chrysostom and some of their Greek Fathers (which is true) of the wicked in hell, who are said to be saved by fire, inasmuch as they always subsist and continue in those flames, and are not destroyed by them: but this interpretation, as the Latin bishops replied, is not agreeable to the style of the Sacred Texts, in which to be saved, both in the Greek and Latin, is expressed the salvation and happiness of souls in heaven. It may not be amiss to take notice that the Greeks, before they met with the Latins at Ferrara, or Florence, did not deny the Catholic doctrine of purgatory. They admitted a middle state, where souls guilty of lesser sins, suffered for a time, till cleansed from such sins: they allowed that the souls there detained from the vision of God, might be assisted by the prayers of the faithful: they called this purgatory a place of darkness, of sorrow, of punishments, and pains, but they did not allow there a ture and material fire, which the Council did not judge necessary to decide and define against them, as appears in in the definition of the Council.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: stashko on February 11, 2009, 10:54:14 PM
Brother i read some of your post's on catholic answers ,,i swear you argue for the orthodox side over there..but here your arguing for the catholic side  ...you are good.....
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: ialmisry on February 11, 2009, 11:15:53 PM
Exactly my point that I was trying to make.  This whole thing is ludicrous simply because it is determined by the whims of individual men (i.e. popes), none of whom are entrusted with the powers that the Roman Church claims that they have, ever.  And that is why we see patently ridiculous statements from various popes about how 15 minutes of reading Scripture=300 days less in purgatory or however that formula is supposed to work.  It is reduced to totally arbitrary standards depending on whom is wearing the Papal mitre.  And good, honest people (i.e. faithful Catholics) are still being sucked and tricked into this whole thing! ???

Grace and Peace,

Boy are you folks pulling me into all sorts of corrections as to exactly what the Roman Church actually teaches.

If purgatory is one of the most difficult Catholic doctrines for non-Catholics to understand, then the Church's teaching on indulgences must be equally difficult. One reason is that the terms "purgatory" and "indulgence" are not found in the Sacred Text. In order to appreciate the doctrine of indulgences, it is necessary first to understand what the Church teaches about purgatory.

Among the Sacred Texts used in explaining the doctrine on purgatory, the clearest is found in 2 Maccabees. The incident concerns the aftermath of a battle between the Jews, lead by Judas Maccabeus, and the Edomites. Judas and his men, collecting the bodies of their fallen, discovered sacred tokens (i.e. idols) under their tunics. Recognizing that these men had died in sin, "they turned to prayer, beseeching that the sin which had been committed might be wholly blotted out. And the noble Judas exhorted the people to keep themselves free from sin... He also took up a collection, man by man, to the amount of two thousand drachmas of silver, and sent it to Jerusalem to provide for a sin offering. In doing this, he acted very well and honorably, taking account of the resurrection. For if he were not expecting that those who had fallen would rise again, it would have been superfluous and foolish to pray for the dead. But if he was looking to the splendid reward that is laid up for those who fall asleep in godliness, it was a holy and pious thought. Therefore, he made atonement for the dead, that they might be delivered from their sin" (2 Mc 12:42-45).

The central point is that it is good to pray for the dead. Perhaps in this we can all agree. If, however, there are only a heaven and a hell, it makes no point:

Here you have swerved off course.

There is Heaven.

There is Hell.

Prayers for the dead benefit them.


That is what we have received.

Beyond that, you are speculating.

Quote
For if the dead are in heaven, they do not need prayers; and if they are in hell (i.e. Gehenna), prayer will be of no avail. So the Sacred Texts appear to many to pin us. At the heart of the Roman Church's teaching on purgatory, then, is the realization that, from the time a person dies until he or she reaches heaven, both the faithful on earth and the saints in heaven can assist that person with their prayers. Thus, purgatory is directly related to the doctrine of sin and so to the effects of the sacrament of Penance.

So, what happens to all those prayers for those who are later canonized.  Does the saint enter heaven when canonized, or when he departs this earth?  And if when he departs this earth ("Today you will be with Me in Paradise"), then the prayers between his death and canonization are of no avail.  So what of them?

Quote
Beyond the reference in 2 Maccabees, the Sacred Texts offer insights on individual concerversion. Alienation from God by sinning may not necessarily be overcome by a single act of repentance. In point of fact, an act of judgment may be the cause for the final conversion of the sinner. Thus my point about mercy in just punishment. The Sacred Texts also offer instances where, although a sin may be confessed and the guilt forgiven, God still imposes punishments that are not canceled (Gn 3:17-19: Nm 20:12, 27:13; 2 Sm 12:10-14).


This is what worrying about pinheads and angels does to you (not you personally).

In Genesis 3, there is no repentance, no forgiveness, and consequently no forgiveness.

Ditto Numbers.

David and Bathsheba is the only case (the only in Scripture in fact) that can be construed in favor of this satification scheme of the Vatican.  The problem is that the Apostles never knew of it.

Quote
If this be the case, then it cannot be said that God's forgiveness of guilt always includes as well the remission of the punishment due to those sins. Intercessory Prayer is also documented in the Sacred Texts, with limits set only by the providential will of God and the free will of the person for whom the prayers are being offered.

When is the first indication that someone interpreted David's repentance as receiving forgiveness without "remission of the punishment due to those sins?"

Intercessary prayer is not indicated here.

Quote
From the second century A.D. onward, there are accounts of sinners performing intense acts of penance for their sins committed after Baptism. This practice was monitored by the Church, as she regulated the penances by discipline adapted to the individual penitent. Penances could be shortened for some by the intercession of their confessors, and those awaiting martyrdom could offer their salutary acts for others.

I can see how this may have been conscrued later into the "system of merits," but it wasn't its origin.

Quote
By the Middle Ages, the practice of frequent confession led to some mitigation of penances and allowed penitents to perform "redemptory" works. In addition to the private prayers and works of individuals, the public, liturgical prayers of the Church including intercession for sinners. By the eleventh century, the Roman Church was teaching that she could and did officially intervene on behalf of the penitent. Such intervention, replacing some of the individual's penance, was an act of intercession seen in light of the totality of the Body of Christ. These first "indulgences" were acts of jurisdiction, meaning that the real canonical penance was remitted. They were outside the sacrament of Penance, yet involved punishments due to sins that had been confessed. Here, for the first time, the penance of the individual and the intercessory work of the Church were directly connected. It is this which consitituted indulgences as such.

Something that shows up a thousand years after the Apostles isn't apostolic.

Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: ignatius on February 11, 2009, 11:35:44 PM
Brother i read some of your post's on catholic answers ,,i swear you argue for the orthodox side over there..but here your arguing for the catholic side  ...you are good.....

Grace and Peace,

I am not trying to 'argue for the Catholic Side'. I am only offering that if one is going to criticize. One should be honest and know what the other side is saying. Read ialmisry's critique. It's not being rude, distorting the opposition or attacking me. He's offering criticism of the Doctrine of Purgatory. I do agree with him that it is an elaboration of the earlier Church Teachings. Personally I like the 'room' Orthodoxy gives to the individual to understand the Faith in mystery but I also desire the Faith to make sense and to be cogent.

As I make my way East I I want to shed what is unnecessary but I don't honestly believe that I must discard a great deal of what I have found fruitful in the West. Indulgences... is probably the most troublesome of the later doctrines of the Roman Church. I understand there development but I honestly question their necessity. To remain in Communion in Rome I don't think I can outright deny them but I look at them with this kind of look...  :-\

That said intellectually I understand the teaching.... That doesn't mean I think it's necessary.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: ignatius on February 11, 2009, 11:36:47 PM

Something that shows up a thousand years after the Apostles isn't apostolic.

You mean like confession?  :o
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: lubeltri on February 11, 2009, 11:43:18 PM
Well I've been Protestant and I didn't think that they got a whole lot right. Sorry I don't find this line of argument convincing and am frankly surprised that such a narrow forensic view of salvation would be offered as Orthodox.

Oh, well, some EO contrarians will do anything, stretch themselves silly, to distance themselves as far from (often strawman) Catholic teaching as possible.

BTW, Mickey, that there are real fires in Purgatory is not a dogma, though there is ample support in Scripture and Tradition for at least a metaphorical cleansing fire. 
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Papist on February 11, 2009, 11:43:18 PM
Brother i read some of your post's on catholic answers ,,i swear you argue for the orthodox side over there..but here your arguing for the catholic side  ...you are good.....
Well, he just doesn't want the Catholic position to misrepresented. What described about purgatory was probably the most acurate portrayal that I have seen in a long time.
I would add a few things.
 What is meant by purgatory is very far from defined in the Catholic Church. We do not know what the suffering is nor do we know how "long" (if that word can even be used after death) a person will be there.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: ialmisry on February 11, 2009, 11:49:10 PM

Something that shows up a thousand years after the Apostles isn't apostolic.

You mean like confession?  :o

I haven't looked at that confession thread, maybe I should.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: ignatius on February 11, 2009, 11:59:36 PM

 What is meant by purgatory is very far from defined in the Catholic Church. We do not know what the suffering is nor do we know how "long" (if that word can even be used after death) a person will be there.


Grace and Peace,

What I think most Orthodox would critique regarding Purgatory is it's 'effect' within the scope of "the double consequence" of sin. It's clearly too forensic for them. I can appreciate that criticism. I think Bishop Kallistos Ware couches this the best though. I don't think I would burn a lot of time defending it's necessity with ialmisry. He/She is a very thorough debater and I honestly just don't want to go there.

At this point in my journey. I can appreciate the differences and the similarities. That doesn't mean I adhere to some kind of 'branch theory' but it does mean that I'm not chomping on the bit to bash Roman Catholics so I can feel more Orthodox. At least not here.  :P
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: stanley123 on February 12, 2009, 05:49:09 AM
Here you have swerved off course.

There is Heaven.

There is Hell.

Prayers for the dead benefit them.


That is what we have received.

Beyond that, you are speculating.....
I can't buy this line of argumentation because a Buddhist would say that you are speculating when you posit heaven and hell. But  we know there is a heaven and a hell, and just as surely, we know there is a purgatory. If you commit a mortal sin and do not repent, you will go to hell. If you commit a venial sin and do not repent, you will be punished in purgaotry, but eventually end up in heaven after your just punishment. Some sins do not merit hell, but still merit some punishment so it is entirely reasonable that purgatory exists.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Mickey on February 16, 2009, 01:34:08 PM
I don't believe this is a fair description of my tone or my manner in this thread.

I believe that it is very fair.

This is where I find Orthodox apologetics willing to counter their own tradition in order to score points in a debate.

Purgatory was NEVER a part of the Orthodox Tradition "pre" or "post" schism. So nobody is countering anything.

How do that assert shared communion when they have such diverse and opposing theologies? In Pope Shenouda's theology Bishop's hopes are dashed.

Any Orthodox bishop that says the Orthodox Church accepts the Roman Catholic doctrine of purgatory--is the one who is mistaken in his speculation.

Oh, I am the first one to admit that I am attached to Latin Theology.


Yes. It is evident.

I would argue that you have overstepped your bounds in countering the Roman Dogma of Purgatory

That would be a bad argument on your part because there is no such thing as the doctrine of purgatory in the Holy Orthodox Church----hence there is no argument.

and I would continue to argue that Pope Shenouda has also do so as well.

This is also a bad argument because there is no such thing as the doctrine of purgatory in the Coptic Orthodox Church either.

This is where Polemics have Blinded sound refutation

Here is where you go astray, Chris. There is nothing to refute. The doctrine does not exist in the East. Rome can continue to attempt to justify this innovation, but most Orthodox want no part of it.





Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Mickey on February 16, 2009, 01:36:02 PM
If purgatory is one of the most difficult Catholic doctrines for non-Catholics to understand, then the Church's teaching on indulgences must be equally difficult.

Legalism tends to do that to a person.  :(
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Mickey on February 16, 2009, 01:42:10 PM
BTW, Mickey, that there are real fires in Purgatory is not a dogma

I see. No real fires--only punishments.  :-\
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Papist on February 16, 2009, 01:50:53 PM
BTW, Mickey, that there are real fires in Purgatory is not a dogma

I see. No real fires--only punishments.  :-\
And what is wrong with punishment? The bible says that God punishes his children because he loves them.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Mickey on February 16, 2009, 04:43:46 PM
And what is wrong with punishment?

God does not punish us. We punish ourselves.

God loves us.

Repent in this life.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: ignatius on February 16, 2009, 05:04:01 PM
Here is where you go astray, Chris. There is nothing to refute. The doctrine does not exist in the East. Rome can continue to attempt to justify this innovation, but most Orthodox want no part of it.

You look at the teaching of Purgatory and you see far more that is inherent in the Doctrine.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Mickey on February 16, 2009, 05:07:19 PM
You look at the teaching of Purgatory and you see far more that is inherent in the Doctrine.
Wrong.

I see no "doctrine" at all.   ;)
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: ignatius on February 16, 2009, 05:22:19 PM
You look at the teaching of Purgatory and you see far more that is inherent in the Doctrine.
Wrong.

I see no "doctrine" at all.   ;)

Cute. Regardless I hope for a purgation if truly no sin can stand in the presence of God. I hope for reconciliation if truly our God is Just. If truly God's Mercy trumps any Divine sense of Justice then It really doesn't matter.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Papist on February 16, 2009, 05:31:18 PM
And what is wrong with punishment?

God does not punish us. We punish ourselves.

God loves us.

Repent in this life.
And yet the Bible says that he does punish us because we are his children.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Mickey on February 16, 2009, 05:34:31 PM
Cute. Regardless I hope for a purgation if truly no sin can stand in the presence of God. I hope for reconciliation if truly our God is Just. If truly God's Mercy trumps any Divine sense of Justice then It really doesn't matter.
Nothing about it is meant to be "cute".

God's mercy is infinite.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Mickey on February 16, 2009, 05:35:25 PM
And yet the Bible says that he does punish us because we are his children.
It is so sad when people interpret God's love as "punishment".
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: ignatius on February 16, 2009, 05:37:23 PM
Cute. Regardless I hope for a purgation if truly no sin can stand in the presence of God. I hope for reconciliation if truly our God is Just. If truly God's Mercy trumps any Divine sense of Justice then It really doesn't matter.
Nothing about it is meant to be "cute".

God's mercy is infinite.

Then none of us has anything to really worry about.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Papist on February 16, 2009, 05:37:46 PM
And yet the Bible says that he does punish us because we are his children.
It is so sad when people interpret God's love as "punishment".
And yet the bible says that God punishes us because he is our Father just like our earthly fathers punish us. Why do you continue to actually deal with this point?
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Mickey on February 17, 2009, 10:16:08 AM
Then none of us has anything to really worry about.
We are saved by grace. Participate in the sacraments. Repent with a sincere heart. Love God with all your being. Love your neighbor as yourself. And you will have peace in your heart. The Lord is not looking for us to be anxious and afraid.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Mickey on February 17, 2009, 10:19:04 AM
And yet the bible says that God punishes us because he is our Father just like our earthly fathers punish us. Why do you continue to actually deal with this point?
God is love. When I discipline my children, I do not punish them. I do not inflict pain or fire. I discipline them with love and care and tenderness.

God is love.

God is not punishment.

God is not pain.

God is not fire.

God is love.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: AlexanderOfBergamo on February 17, 2009, 10:44:03 AM
I think you made the point, Mickey! God is indeed love, and love transforms us, changes us in our souls.
The doctrine of purgatory is inacceptable from an Orthodox perspective because RC's say that God punishes the souls to satisfy his justice. On the contrary, a more Orthodox approach on purification after death (which was believed by certain Church Fathers and I could even subscribe) could compare purgation to a process of ascesis and theosis the souls undergo while immersed in God's love (which is one of his energies, and thus comparable to fire). Like a monk, so that he might become an imitator of Christ, chooses to fast and abstain from fleshly desires and prays the Lord to help him, in the same way God sustains and helps the souls of those who departed to renounce all effimere things which destract from our path to God. The soul is thus purged and the "suffering" they pass isn't God's punishment for sin, but one's ascesis because the soul "suffers loss" when one renounces to something attractive of this world (such as sex, money, food, power...), and the more one renounces to them the more the soul prepares to welcome God's presence exclusively.
Any sort of purification is a process of theosis, i.e. a way we get closer and closer to God's life so that we are immersed in his energies and partake of it. In our world we can obtain this by faith and through good works; yet God gives us the possibility to reach Him even in the life to come if we're not "pure".

Another idea completely foreign to Orthodoxy I guess might be the insufficience of a good confession to purify our souls. If a person who was absolved still needs to be purged, then this sacrament has no spiritual value, it's only a way to obtain God's forgiveness and that's all folks... No, the Mystery of Penance is a fruit of the Holy Spirit that changes the soul of an individual exactly as a medicine cures the sick. Of course, if you approach to confession without any real repentance and desire to "cure" your illness, God's grace can't penetrate and act into your soul...

In Christ,   Alex
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: AlexanderOfBergamo on February 17, 2009, 11:00:56 AM
Quote
Quote from: Mickey on Yesterday at 05:35:25 PM
Quote from: Papist on Yesterday at 05:31:18 PM
And yet the Bible says that he does punish us because we are his children.

It is so sad when people interpret God's love as "punishment".

And yet the bible says that God punishes us because he is our Father just like our earthly fathers punish us. Why do you continue to actually deal with this point?

Have you ever read the parable of the prodigal son? It seems you haven't, otherwise you'll understand that you keep acting like the older brother who didn't understand his father's mercy and justice towards the younger son.

The merciful father didn't accept the prodigal son's proposal to become his slave because he needed no "satisfaction" of justice. The prodigal son personally touched the fruits of sin, both the good ones and the evil ones. When he came to his father's he had understood all of his mistakes and was now ready to renounce everything he dreamt for when he left home with his father's inheritance. That's why the father understood that his son was indeed a good penitent, having renounced to all fleshly desires...
God asks us for no satisfaction: He asks us to renounce sin and accept His infinite love, submitting to His will.

God bless,   Alex
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Mickey on February 17, 2009, 11:08:46 AM
Any sort of purification is a process of theosis, i.e. a way we get closer and closer to God's life so that we are immersed in his energies and partake of it. In our world we can obtain this by faith and through good works; yet God gives us the possibility to reach Him even in the life to come if we're not "pure".

Another idea completely foreign to Orthodoxy I guess might be the insufficience of a good confession to purify our souls. If a person who was absolved still needs to be purged, then this sacrament has no spiritual value, it's only a way to obtain God's forgiveness and that's all folks... No, the Mystery of Penance is a fruit of the Holy Spirit that changes the soul of an individual exactly as a medicine cures the sick. Of course, if you approach to confession without any real repentance and desire to "cure" your illness, God's grace can't penetrate and act into your soul...

Eloquently stated as usual.  :)
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Papist on February 17, 2009, 11:11:55 AM
And yet the bible says that God punishes us because he is our Father just like our earthly fathers punish us. Why do you continue to actually deal with this point?
God is love. When I discipline my children, I do not punish them. I do not inflict pain or fire. I discipline them with love and care and tenderness.

God is love.

God is not punishment.

God is not pain.

God is not fire.

God is love.
If you do not punish your children then you do not really discipline them. As for God being fire, the bible says that God is a consuming fire. Why do you keep supporting your views with unscriptural arguements?
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Mickey on February 17, 2009, 11:22:38 AM
If you do not punish your children then you do not really discipline them.

Do you inflict pain on your children?

As for God being fire, the bible says that God is a consuming fire.

Can you show me where this fire is explained as pain and punishment?

Why do you keep supporting your views with unscriptural arguements?

Funny. That is what I was going to ask you.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Papist on February 17, 2009, 12:02:30 PM
If you do not punish your children then you do not really discipline them.

Do you inflict pain on your children?

As for God being fire, the bible says that God is a consuming fire.

Can you show me where this fire is explained as pain and punishment?

Why do you keep supporting your views with unscriptural arguements?

Funny. That is what I was going to ask you.
I don't have children but when I punish my students it is not enjoyable. When my parents punished me as a child, sometimes it was painful. As the scriptures state, "Spare the rod, spoil the child". My parents loved me enough to spank me so that I would learn my lessons as a small child. As for the scriptures, when it states that God punishes us because we are his children, it sometimes translated as "chastisement" which is painful. Further, when he punishes people in the scriptures, it often states that his anger "burns" against them. Just like fire. I think your view of God is a modernist view.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: AlexanderOfBergamo on February 17, 2009, 01:39:18 PM
Dear Papist,
as you maybe don't know, there's some news you should know... some millennia ago God ALREADY punished humanity in Adam expelling him from the Garden of Eden, and with him all of his descendants. And you know what? Two millennia ago (yeah, "just" 2000 years...) another Man came and delivered us from this condition. He said that the doors of heaven were now open anew for those who accepted God's love as the only instrument of salvation. Maybe you don't know of him... he was named Jesus Christ. You should maybe read some of his biographies...

"For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him, should not perish, but have everlasting life"  John 3:16

"But when Jesus heard that, he said unto them, They that be whole need not a physician, but they that are sick.
But go ye and learn what that meaneth, I will have mercy, and not sacrifice: for I am not come to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance" Matthew 9:12-13

And also read this words of st. Isaac the Syrian:
"for five thousand years five hundred and some years God left Adam to labor on the earth" (from his 19th Homily)
and st. John Chrysostom also states that Jesus "opened for us today Paradise, which had remained closed for some 5000 years" (from On the Cross and the Thief)

God bless,
Alex



Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Myrrh23 on February 17, 2009, 02:13:23 PM
If you do not punish your children then you do not really discipline them.

Do you inflict pain on your children?

As for God being fire, the bible says that God is a consuming fire.

Can you show me where this fire is explained as pain and punishment?

Why do you keep supporting your views with unscriptural arguements?

Funny. That is what I was going to ask you.
I don't have children but when I punish my students it is not enjoyable. When my parents punished me as a child, sometimes it was painful. As the scriptures state, "Spare the rod, spoil the child". My parents loved me enough to spank me so that I would learn my lessons as a small child. As for the scriptures, when it states that God punishes us because we are his children, it sometimes translated as "chastisement" which is painful. Further, when he punishes people in the scriptures, it often states that his anger "burns" against them. Just like fire. I think your view of God is a modernist view.

Maybe all the explanations people have for believing in Purgatory is really people understanding and believing in God their way instead of understanding and believing in God His way. I think there's a quote like that in either Matthew or Mark...can't remember.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: ignatius on February 17, 2009, 03:15:41 PM
God is love.

It is true that God is love, but it isn't simply a feminized affection...

Quote
God is not punishment.
For the Lord loveth judgment, and will not forsake his saints : they shall be preserved for ever. The unjust shall be punished, and the seed of the wicked shall perish. ~ Psalms 37:28

Quote
God is not pain.
And the Lord shall strike Egypt with a scourge, and shall heal it, and they shall return to the Lord, and he shall be pacified towards them, and heal them. ~ Isaiah 19:22

Quote
God is not fire.
For behold the Lord will come with fire, and his chariots are like a whirlwind, to render his wrath in indignation, and his rebuke with flames of fire. ~ Isaiah 66:15

Because the Lord thy God is a consuming fire, a jealous God. ~ Deuteronomy 4:24

For our God is a consuming fire. ~ Hebrews 12:29

And the light of Israel shall be as a fire, and the Holy One thereof as a flame: and his thorns and his briers shall be set on fire, and shall be devoured in one day. ~ Isaiah 10:17

Quote
God is love.
See ye that I alone am, and there is no other God besides me: I will kill and I will make to live: I will strike, and I will heal, and there is none that can deliver out of my hand. ~ Deuteronomy 32:29
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: AlexanderOfBergamo on February 17, 2009, 03:45:19 PM
That description of God as a punisher applies to the damnation of the wicked, not to the purgation of the faithful before being transfered to Paradise.

God bless,
Alex
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Mickey on February 17, 2009, 03:46:50 PM
It is true that God is love, but it isn't simply a feminized affection....

I did not say that it was--stop putting words in my mouth.

For the Lord loveth judgment, and will not forsake his saints : they shall be preserved for ever. The unjust shall be punished, and the seed of the wicked shall perish. ~ Psalms 37:28.

Yes. The unjust shall be punished in hell. God does not punish them...they have brought punishment upon themselves by their wickedness.

And the Lord shall strike Egypt with a scourge, and shall heal it, and they shall return to the Lord, and he shall be pacified towards them, and heal them. ~ Isaiah 19:22.

Is there a reason you quoted this psalm? Is it to prove that God inflicts pain? You are terribly misled.

For behold the Lord will come with fire, and his chariots are like a whirlwind, to render his wrath in indignation, and his rebuke with flames of fire. ~ Isaiah 66:15

Because the Lord thy God is a consuming fire, a jealous God. ~ Deuteronomy 4:24

For our God is a consuming fire. ~ Hebrews 12:29

And the light of Israel shall be as a fire, and the Holy One thereof as a flame: and his thorns and his briers shall be set on fire, and shall be devoured in one day. ~ Isaiah 10:17


You forgot about the burning bush and the pillar of fire and...well you get my drift. But of course none of these descriptions are referring to a painful, punishing fire. Or a fire which purges souls in purgatory.

See ye that I alone am, and there is no other God besides me: I will kill and I will make to live: I will strike, and I will heal, and there is none that can deliver out of my hand. ~ Deuteronomy 32:29

Which shows us that God is everything and controls everything. But He is merciful and loving--not vengeful and vindictive and punishing.

I am starting to feel sorry for you, Chris. Perhaps this is why you see-saw back and forth between Catholicism and Orthodoxy so often. You cannot "purge" the thought that God is some type of punishing figure that inflicts pain and suffering.

Be not afraid.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Mickey on February 17, 2009, 03:53:00 PM
I don't have children but when I punish my students it is not enjoyable.
Do you hurt them?

My parents loved me enough to spank me so that I would learn my lessons as a small child.
Physically assaulting a small child causes emotional scars well into adutlhood.

As I think your view of God is a modernist view.
LOL! That is a good one! You are the first one ever to call me a modernist.  :laugh:
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Mickey on February 17, 2009, 03:53:48 PM
Dear Papist,
as you maybe don't know, there's some news you should know... some millennia ago God ALREADY punished humanity in Adam expelling him from the Garden of Eden, and with him all of his descendants. And you know what? Two millennia ago (yeah, "just" 2000 years...) another Man came and delivered us from this condition. He said that the doors of heaven were now open anew for those who accepted God's love as the only instrument of salvation. Maybe you don't know of him... he was named Jesus Christ. You should maybe read some of his biographies...

"For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him, should not perish, but have everlasting life"  John 3:16

"But when Jesus heard that, he said unto them, They that be whole need not a physician, but they that are sick.
But go ye and learn what that meaneth, I will have mercy, and not sacrifice: for I am not come to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance" Matthew 9:12-13

And also read this words of st. Isaac the Syrian:
"for five thousand years five hundred and some years God left Adam to labor on the earth" (from his 19th Homily)
and st. John Chrysostom also states that Jesus "opened for us today Paradise, which had remained closed for some 5000 years" (from On the Cross and the Thief)

Thank you Alex. Good post.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Myrrh23 on February 17, 2009, 04:14:05 PM
Papist, if your wife did something to displease you, would you hit her to teach her a lesson? If you think it works for a child, why not go about slugging your wife as well? After all, isn't that good discipline? Islam certainly thinks so. Wonder if that makes you a Muslim rather than a Christian. ::)
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Innocent on February 17, 2009, 04:14:58 PM
This is just word semantics! I don't believe in purgatory or the need for it but when my niece (Godchild) is over and she needs a timeout (no TV) it is punishment, and I do it because I love her. I want her to correct the behavior she is doing the same way God wants us to repent (now) because he loves us.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: ignatius on February 17, 2009, 04:18:54 PM
Yes. The unjust shall be punished in hell. God does not punish them...they have brought punishment upon themselves by their wickedness.

Who do you think created all this in which our behavior will be judged? You seem to want to exempt God any responsibility....

Quote
Is there a reason you quoted this psalm? Is it to prove that God inflicts pain? You are terribly misled.

Scourging... the affliction of pain is used in order that "he shall be pacified' is mentioned. The idea of chastisement is throughout the Sacred Texts. I'm not sure how you avoid it?

Quote
You forgot about the burning bush and the pillar of fire and...well you get my drift. But of course none of these descriptions are referring to a painful, punishing fire. Or a fire which purges souls in purgatory.

You said God is not fire. He is said to be fire many times. I don't have to suggest that God is purgatory to counter your claim. I simply offer to you passages where He is clearly spoken of as fire.

Quote
Which shows us that God is everything and controls everything. But He is merciful and loving--not vengeful and vindictive and punishing.

You seem to equal the exercise of Justice as vengeful, vindictive and punishing. I think you are mistaken.

Quote
I am starting to feel sorry for you, Chris. Perhaps this is why you see-saw back in forth between Catholicism and Orthodoxy. You cannot "purge" the thought that God is some type of punishing figure that inflicts pain and suffering.

I'm not sure what pity has with regards to this conversation. Whatever Orthodoxy I hold to doesn't do injustice to the normative interpretation of the Sacred Text. I understand that many of the Greek Philosophers chafed over God as not worthy of worship. That exists in our own day which is why I think Orthodoxy is becoming popular but I'm not sure it's as Biblical as Catholicism. That is my dilemma. Coming from a Baptist background I hold that our Salvation must be done in fear and trembling. I'm not ashamed of that. I see no reason to be presumptuous of God's favor toward us nor in our own Salvation. Which is why I chafe with regards to Once Saved, Always Saved....

I don't want your pity nor your contempt. I can't agree with you in good conscience if I don't believe your arguments are valid. That might offend you and cause you to belittle me with thoughts of pity and contempt but so be it.

Knowing myself to be a sinner. Not productive with the grace God's given me I can't help be fear the judgment seat. I'm not proud of my wickedness but I acknowledge it none-the-less. I believe my sin harms those around me... my wife, my daughter, co-workers, friends and family. They clearly deserve better. God deserves better and yet I am incapable of better. I believe that God is Just and the wrongs which I have done, if not corrected, needs to have restitution. I should undo the damage done not simply be content that I am absolved for the crime or harm. If I don't see the harm healed then it is not forgotten by me. I'm not sure I can explain it any better but I'm not looking for absolution, I'm looking for the means of conquering sin. If Orthodoxy doesn't help me in this endeavor then it is useless to me.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Mickey on February 17, 2009, 04:24:20 PM
I want her to correct the behavior she is doing the same way God wants us to repent (now) because he loves us.

Yes...now.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: ignatius on February 17, 2009, 04:31:12 PM
Papist, if your wife did something to displease you, would you hit her to teach her a lesson? If you think it works for a child, why not go about slugging your wife as well? After all, isn't that good discipline? Islam certainly thinks so. Wonder if that makes you a Muslim rather than a Christian. ::)

As a father we have the role to 'raise our children'. We don't have the same role toward our wives whom are our partners and companions. Again this is different than the role we might have as 'teachers'. This was understood in the early Church as well.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: AlexanderOfBergamo on February 17, 2009, 04:31:45 PM
Quote from Mickey:
Quote
Thank you Alex. Good post.
Thx! Since is purgatory is one of the issue that get me crazy when I deal with RC's, everything I said with apparent rage... well was in truth pure wrath hehe

Quote from Myrrh23:
Quote
Papist, if your wife did something to displease you, would you hit her to teach her a lesson? If you think it works for a child, why not go about slugging your wife as well? After all, isn't that good discipline? Islam certainly thinks so. Wonder if that makes you a Muslim rather than a Christian.

I was coming to exactly the same idea... I was wondering if Papist & Co generally call God as "Father" or if they prefer "Jehovah" and "Allah" since I heard such horrible ideas on suffering only from JW's and Muslims...


In Christ,   Alex

Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: ignatius on February 17, 2009, 04:42:01 PM
Quote from Mickey:
Quote
Thank you Alex. Good post.
Thx! Since is purgatory is one of the issue that get me crazy when I deal with RC's, everything I said with apparent rage... well was in truth pure wrath hehe

Quote from Myrrh23:
Quote
Papist, if your wife did something to displease you, would you hit her to teach her a lesson? If you think it works for a child, why not go about slugging your wife as well? After all, isn't that good discipline? Islam certainly thinks so. Wonder if that makes you a Muslim rather than a Christian.

I was coming to exactly the same idea... I was wondering if Papist & Co generally call God as "Father" or if they prefer "Jehovah" and "Allah" since I heard such horrible ideas on suffering only from JW's and Muslims...

I would only ask that you exercise some respect toward us and not be so quick to insult us in this manner. We are dialoguing with you all on this topic in complete sincerity. Knowing this I believe is would proper for you to be kind.

I do fear God. I'm not ashamed of that. I know who He is and who I am. I am not someone who presumes anything of the Almighty.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: lubeltri on February 17, 2009, 04:56:52 PM
Mickey and Alex,

Your language towards Papist and Ignatius is devoid of charity. Name-calling will not do.

I don't know why you can't just shake the dust off your feet in your departure from the Catholic Church---why the need to pick up handfuls of dirt and aim for the eye?
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: AlexanderOfBergamo on February 17, 2009, 05:01:00 PM
Dear ignatius and lubeltri,
there was no hatred in my words, it was just a provocation. I beg your pardon.
My hatred towards RC theology is due to the fact I was imposed this RC super-legalistic view since my childhood. Lots of people I know have left the Church because they can't accept the idea of a killing or avenging or punishing God as it is shown in the OT. I don't reject the OT as a part of the Bible, but I know that Jesus gave it a greater meaning. His message was Love-is-everything. I know God will punish all sinners. I don't subscribe at all to the theory of apokatastasis. But I'm certain that God won't punish those who have already been saved and whose name is written in the Book of Life. As I already stated above, the parable of the prodigal son teaches more then adequately how God forgives one's sins when he sees a sincere repentance. That's all we should know: we must repent and pray to change our lives AT THIS TIME. Our fear shouldn't go to the punishments of purgatory but to the damnation of hell, which is an irreversible condition of true suffering.

In Christ,   Alex
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Mickey on February 17, 2009, 05:02:33 PM
You seem to want to exempt God any responsibility.....
 

You want to make him into a cruel punishing figure. Can you not see the problem with this?

Scourging... the affliction of pain is used in order that "he shall be pacified' is mentioned. The idea of chastisement is throughout the Sacred Texts. I'm not sure how you avoid it?.

Perhaps you should find the writings of the Holy Fathers when they interpret these verses (or maybe someone here can help you). I heard them in a Greek Orthodox Bible study. These psalms and verses you refer to are oftentimes metaphors. I can guarantee you that the Holy Fathers would not tell you that God is a punisher and that he personally inflicts pain to teach lessons.

You said God is not fire.

You know what I meant. You do not need to play this game.

God is not the king of punishment using painful fire to inflict his punishment. Is that better?

That exists in our own day which is why I think Orthodoxy is becoming popular but I'm not sure it's as Biblical as Catholicism.
I have heard that before. Next month you might say the opposite----- that Roman Catholicism is not as Biblical as Orthodoxy. That is why I have sorrow (pity was the wrong word). It must be very difficult to adopt another perspective several times per year.

Coming from a Baptist background I hold that our Salvation must be done in fear and trembling.

Most baptists I know say that they are saved by faith alone. BTW--"fear and trembling"  means "respect and awe" in this verse

Which is why I chafe with regards to Once Saved, Always Saved....

So do I. It takes away our free will.

I don't want your pity nor your contempt.

I expressed my pity because I have seen the difficult journey that you are traveling over the years. Perhaps pity was the wrong word.  Please do not add contempt--I do not express contempt. If you are going to inject the passion of anger into this, then I suggest you stop responding to me.

I can't agree with you in good conscience if I don't believe your arguments are valid.

I am not here to coax you into "believing my argument".

That might offend you and cause you to belittle me with thoughts of pity and contempt but so be it.

I am not belittling you and I expressed no contempt. I am sorry that the word pity has disturbed you so...it was a bad choice of words. Again, if your passion of anger is going to continue, perhaps you should bow out.

Knowing myself to be a sinner.

We are all wretched sinners.

I can't help be fear the judgment seat.

This fear should be understood as respect and awe.

I'm not proud of my wickedness but I acknowledge it none-the-less. I believe my sin harms those around me... my wife, my daughter, co-workers, friends and family. They clearly deserve better. God deserves better and yet I am incapable of better. I believe that God is Just and the wrongs which I have done, if not corrected, needs to have restitution. I should undo the damage done not simply be content that I am absolved for the crime or harm. If I don't see the harm healed then it is not forgotten by me.

That is a beautiful statement Chris...and it is true for most of us.  But you cannot let this turn into scrupulosity and/or despair.  That would be dangerous for the soul. Give your best and let God do the rest.  He is all merciful and loving...He is not a punisher who does not forgive.  Remember the widow who gave her last two mites? Repent, confess, do penance (if it is given to you), then go and sin no more. Then put the past behind you and leave it there because God does not keep a tally if you have confessed with a contrite heart.

I'm looking for the means of conquering sin. If Orthodoxy doesn't help me in this endeavor then it is useless to me.

After 45 years in the the Latin and Eastern Catholic Church, these last two years in the Holy Orthodox Church have offered me that means of conquering sin more than I could ever have imagined. I have made great strides. But I am still a wretched sinner and I always will be.

Peace
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Mickey on February 17, 2009, 05:11:08 PM
Dear ignatius and lubeltri,
there was no hatred in my words, it was just a provocation. I beg your pardon.
My hatred towards RC theology is due to the fact I was imposed this RC super-legalistic view since my childhood. Lots of people I know have left the Church because they can't accept the idea of a killing or avenging or punishing God as it is shown in the OT. I don't reject the OT as a part of the Bible, but I know that Jesus gave it a greater meaning. His message was Love-is-everything. I know God will punish all sinners. I don't subscribe at all to the theory of apokatastasis. But I'm certain that God won't punish those who have already been saved and whose name is written in the Book of Life. As I already stated above, the parable of the prodigal son teaches more then adequately how God forgives one's sins when he sees a sincere repentance. That's all we should know: we must repent and pray to change our lives AT THIS TIME. Our fear shouldn't go to the punishments of purgatory but to the damnation of hell, which is an irreversible condition of true suffering.

It is very frightening how much we think alike.  ;D
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Mickey on February 17, 2009, 05:15:01 PM
Your language towards Papist and Ignatius is devoid of charity. Name-calling will not do.

I have no idea what you are talking about?

I don't know why you can't just shake the dust off your feet in your departure from the Catholic Church---why the need to pick up handfuls of dirt and aim for the eye?

There is no mud slinging--you are mistaken.  Furthermore, this is an Orthodox forum and the Holy Orthodox Church does not accept the post schism doctrine of purgatory. If someone asks, we try to explain.  But in reality there is nothing to explain because it is not our doctrine.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: AlexanderOfBergamo on February 17, 2009, 05:20:14 PM
Yeah, that's incredible, brother.
I don't know how old you are, but I'm just 25 years old and I'm here discussing theology with RC and OC representatives who, I know and guess, must be at least 20 or 30 years older then me... And yet I found in you and many others on this forum some real borthers to discuss with.
I take the chance to repeat I'm not against none of you, Papist Ignatius and Lubeltri. I'm more a frustrated guy looking back for the purest form of religion, i.e. the most conservative in liturgy and ecumenical faith as possible. My Catholic background made me an anti-Catholic, but I guess this is due primarily to the bad influence of a super-catholic nation as Italy actually is.

In Christ,   Alex

PS: plz lubeltri or mickey or anybody else, as I'm Italian and don't understand some idiomatic sentences, can you plz explain what "pick up handfuls of dirt and aim for the eye" actually means? Thx in advance
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: ignatius on February 17, 2009, 05:22:40 PM
Dear ignatius and lubeltri,
there was no hatred in my words, it was just a provocation. I beg your pardon.
My hatred towards RC theology is due to the fact I was imposed this RC super-legalistic view since my childhood. Lots of people I know have left the Church because they can't accept the idea of a killing or avenging or punishing God as it is shown in the OT. I don't reject the OT as a part of the Bible, but I know that Jesus gave it a greater meaning. His message was Love-is-everything. I know God will punish all sinners. I don't subscribe at all to the theory of apokatastasis. But I'm certain that God won't punish those who have already been saved and whose name is written in the Book of Life. As I already stated above, the parable of the prodigal son teaches more then adequately how God forgives one's sins when he sees a sincere repentance. That's all we should know: we must repent and pray to change our lives AT THIS TIME. Our fear shouldn't go to the punishments of purgatory but to the damnation of hell, which is an irreversible condition of true suffering.

I appreciate this. I can understand that for one who is converting these topics can be antagonizing. I'm not here to challenge you or anything. I think if you can convert you should convert.

My problem with standing behind the Prodigal Son is that it's only one of many Parables. I don't want to hang my whole salvation on one parable but on all of them. I don't believe that we can't, in good conscience, get away from the teaching of punishment. It's scriptural. It is the word of the Holy Spirit spoken through men.

If, as Mickey, suggests that God is all Merciful I will be grateful to receive it but I'm not going to presume it I will beg for it. I will not presume it.

Regardless, I appreciate your kindness.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Mickey on February 17, 2009, 05:26:25 PM
Yeah, that's incredible, brother.
I don't know how old you are, but I'm just 25 years old and I'm here discussing theology with RC and OC representatives who, I know and guess, must be at least 20 or 30 years older then me... And yet I found in you and many others on this forum some real borthers to discuss with.
I take the chance to repeat I'm not against none of you, Papist Ignatius and Lubeltri. I'm more a frustrated guy looking back for the purest form of religion, i.e. the most conservative in liturgy and ecumenical faith as possible. My Catholic background made me an anti-Catholic, but I guess this is due primarily to the bad influence of a super-catholic nation as Italy actually is.

In Christ,   Alex

PS: plz lubeltri or mickey or anybody else, as I'm Italian and don't understand some idiomatic sentences, can you plz explain what "pick up handfuls of dirt and aim for the eye" actually means? Thx in advance

Hi Alex,

I am nearly twice your age yet you have wisdom well beyond your years. It amazes me. Perhaps it is because you are Italian (I only say that because my blood line is mostly of Northern Sicilian descent).  :laugh:

I also do not mean anyone harm. Please forgive me.

PS--Alex, the expression means that Lubeltri thinks we are "throwing dirt", "playing unfair", "insulting others" or "being uncharitable".
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: AlexanderOfBergamo on February 17, 2009, 05:29:59 PM
And I appreciate your sincerity.
I don't like to impose my own ideas, indeed; I just think exactly what's in my signature: that Catholicity means something common to all Christians at all times and places. While the idea of purification after death was well established among the Church Fathers, I don't perceive it as an ecumenical issue when it touches the aforementioned idea of punishment, satisfaction and similar things. No Ecumenical Councils, no Canons and no consent of the Fathers was ever reached (unfortunately) on the topic of life after death - which is really a shame. But after all if we're now here to confront our doctrines there must be some divine plan behind it. Maybe one day we'll understand it, with God's help.

God bless,
with brotherly love,
Alex
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Mickey on February 17, 2009, 05:33:17 PM
My problem with standing behind the Prodigal Son is that it's only one of many Parables. I don't want to hang my whole salvation on one parable but on all of them.

Most interpretations of Lazarus and the rich man are pointing to suffering and comfort, heaven and hell. The rich man is in hell suffering. And Lazarus is in paradise, the bosom of Abraham. Notice that Lazarus is not suffering first in purgatory.

I don't believe that we can't, in good conscience, get away from the teaching of punishment.

As Alex said, this idea of a punishing God is one of the most difficult yokes to overcome from the Latin Church. It was even more oppressive when I was Alex's age!

If, as Mickey, suggests that God is all Merciful I will be grateful to receive it but I'm not going to presume it I will beg for it. I will not presume it.

Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me, a sinner.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: AlexanderOfBergamo on February 17, 2009, 05:37:05 PM
Quote
Hi Alex,

I am nearly twice your age yet you have wisdom well beyond your years. It amazes me. Perhaps it is because you are Italian (I only say that because my blood line is mostly of Northern Sicilian descent).  

I also do not mean anyone harm. Please forgive me.

PS--Alex, the expression means that Lubeltri thinks we are "throwing dirt", "playing unfair", "insulting others" or "being uncharitable".

Thx, I'm not worth such a compliment...  :'( I'm glad to know there's a piece of Italy in your veins, too...

And also thanks for your explanation. At this point, I repeat my sincere prayer: Forgive me for my irruence and uncharitable attitude and if you want pray that I might become an imitator of Christ's humility.

Now, since it's... well, 10:23 p.m. here in Italy, I'm going to go to bed. I'll join this conversation tomorrow...

In Christ,    Alex


Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: ignatius on February 17, 2009, 06:07:50 PM
My problem with standing behind the Prodigal Son is that it's only one of many Parables. I don't want to hang my whole salvation on one parable but on all of them.

Most interpretations of Lazarus and the rich man are pointing to suffering and comfort, heaven and hell. The rich man is in hell suffering. And Lazarus is in paradise, the bosom of Abraham. Notice that Lazarus is not suffering first in purgatory.

I was always under the impression that this was in the present tense and thus spoke of Sheol and not heaven or hell proper?

Quote
As Alex said, this idea of a punishing God is one of the most difficult yokes to overcome from the Latin Church. It was even more oppressive when I was Alex's age!

I honestly don't see it as a yoke of the Latin Church as it has far deeper Semitic roots. I see much of it also in Oriental Theology as well. One of the early precepts of the undivided Church was the 9 ways to sin... one of those ways was presumption...

Set not thy heart upon unjust possessions, and say not: I have enough to live on: for it shall be of no service in the time of vengeance and darkness. Follow not in thy strength the desires of thy heart: 3 And say not: How mighty am I? and who shall bring me under for my deeds? for God will surely take revenge. Say not: I have sinned, and what harm hath befallen me? for the most High is a patient rewarder. Be not without fear about sin forgiven, and add not sin upon sin:

And say not: The mercy of the Lord is great, he will have mercy on the multitude of my sins. For mercy and wrath quickly come from him, and his wrath looketh upon sinners. Delay not to be converted to the Lord, and defer it not from day to day. For his wrath shall come on a sudden, and in the time of vengeance he will destroy thee.  Be not anxious for goods unjustly gotten: for they shall not profit thee in the day of calamity and revenge. Ecclesiasticus 5:1-10


I reflect on this and many other passages of the Sacred Texts soberly.

If, as Mickey, suggests that God is all Merciful I will be grateful to receive it but I'm not going to presume it I will beg for it. I will not presume it.

Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me, a sinner.
[/quote]

Yes, every single Liturgy the Orthodox Church asks for Mercy knowing it is not a given.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: lubeltri on February 17, 2009, 06:44:58 PM
Hmm, my family is from Viterbo province north of Roma---does that make me wise too?  :)

---

On a serious note, if Alex and Mickey weren't so stuck on exaggerated caricatures of actual Catholic teaching on Purgatory, there would be no need for this debate.

This isn't the Catholic God: (http://image.mycolours.com.au/large/3015711.jpg)

This is: (http://www.doxaweb.com/blog/uploaded_images/Divine_Mercy-779948.jpg)


I will repost this excerpt from the Catechism, since it seems that it was ignored last time:

1472 To understand this doctrine and practice of the Church, it is necessary to understand that sin has a double consequence. Grave sin deprives us of communion with God and therefore makes us incapable of eternal life, the privation of which is called the "eternal punishment" of sin. On the other hand every sin, even venial, entails an unhealthy attachment to creatures, which must be purified either here on earth, or after death in the state called Purgatory. This purification frees one from what is called the "temporal punishment" of sin. These two punishments must not be conceived of as a kind of vengeance inflicted by God from without, but as following from the very nature of sin. A conversion which proceeds from a fervent charity can attain the complete purification of the sinner in such a way that no punishment would remain.


Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Papist on February 17, 2009, 11:08:44 PM
Dear Papist,
as you maybe don't know, there's some news you should know... some millennia ago God ALREADY punished humanity in Adam expelling him from the Garden of Eden, and with him all of his descendants. And you know what? Two millennia ago (yeah, "just" 2000 years...) another Man came and delivered us from this condition. He said that the doors of heaven were now open anew for those who accepted God's love as the only instrument of salvation. Maybe you don't know of him... he was named Jesus Christ. You should maybe read some of his biographies...

"For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him, should not perish, but have everlasting life"  John 3:16

"But when Jesus heard that, he said unto them, They that be whole need not a physician, but they that are sick.
But go ye and learn what that meaneth, I will have mercy, and not sacrifice: for I am not come to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance" Matthew 9:12-13

And also read this words of st. Isaac the Syrian:
"for five thousand years five hundred and some years God left Adam to labor on the earth" (from his 19th Homily)
and st. John Chrysostom also states that Jesus "opened for us today Paradise, which had remained closed for some 5000 years" (from On the Cross and the Thief)

God bless,
Alex




Then why does St. Paul in the New Testament say that God punishes his children?
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Papist on February 17, 2009, 11:08:45 PM
Papist, if your wife did something to displease you, would you hit her to teach her a lesson? If you think it works for a child, why not go about slugging your wife as well? After all, isn't that good discipline? Islam certainly thinks so. Wonder if that makes you a Muslim rather than a Christian. ::)
I'm not married. I don't have children. My parents punished us through spankings when we were young and looking back it was a good deterent. I'm glad my parents didn't buy into the liberal nonsense of "no spanking" that our modern society wants us all to buy into.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Papist on February 17, 2009, 11:08:46 PM
Quote from Mickey:
Quote
Thank you Alex. Good post.
Thx! Since is purgatory is one of the issue that get me crazy when I deal with RC's, everything I said with apparent rage... well was in truth pure wrath hehe

Quote from Myrrh23:
Quote
Papist, if your wife did something to displease you, would you hit her to teach her a lesson? If you think it works for a child, why not go about slugging your wife as well? After all, isn't that good discipline? Islam certainly thinks so. Wonder if that makes you a Muslim rather than a Christian.

I was coming to exactly the same idea... I was wondering if Papist & Co generally call God as "Father" or if they prefer "Jehovah" and "Allah" since I heard such horrible ideas on suffering only from JW's and Muslims...


In Christ,   Alex


I do call God Father and realize that a good Father punishes his children when they do wrong.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Entscheidungsproblem on February 17, 2009, 11:13:36 PM
As long as the discussion of punishment continues to relate to temporal punishment, there will be no need for a split.  Let's just prevent any debate about parent/children discipline, pro vs. anti physical correction, etc., since it belongs in another section.

Thanks!

-- Nebelpfade
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Papist on February 17, 2009, 11:21:19 PM
"For the Lord disciplines him whom he loves, and chastises every son he recieves." -Hebrews 12:6

"For they [our fathers] disciplined us for a short time at their pleasure, but he disciplines us for  our good, that we may share his holiness. For the momoent all discipline seems painful rather than pleasant; later it yields the peaceful fruit of righteousness to those who have been trained by it." Hebrews 12:10-11

"But when we are judged by the Lord, we are chastened so that we may not be condemned along with the world."
- 1 Corinthians 11:32

Come on guys. The bible obviously teaches that God punishes us and its not fun but he does it so that we can be made holy. Let's stop arguing.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: stashko on February 17, 2009, 11:47:44 PM
Boy!  R. Catholic are glutton's For punishment....I'm Just Beside myself....even some of your saint's tortured them self's silly, other's prayed to suffer like Christ to experience his wounds....life itself just living it ,has it's crosses to bare ,life has it's rainny and sunnyday's not to worry what tommorow bring as the lord tells us ...............
Why is it so difficult to believe Christ forgives totally upon sincere repentance...as far as the east is from the west i shall remember your sin's no more,,The slate is clean hence no purgitory..............
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Papist on February 17, 2009, 11:53:33 PM
Boy!  R. Catholic are glutton's For punishment....I'm Just Beside myself....even some of your saint's tortured them self's silly, other's prayed to suffer like Christ to experience his wounds....life itself just living it ,has it's crosses to bare ,life has it's rainny and sunnyday's not to worry what tommorow bring as the lord tells us ...............
Why is it so difficult to believe Christ forgives totally upon sincere repentance...as far as the east is from the west i shall remember your sin's no more,,The slate is clean ..............
Will the verses from scripture that I posted be ignored?
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: stanley123 on February 18, 2009, 01:36:01 AM
Boy!  R. Catholic are glutton's For punishment....I'm Just Beside myself....even some of your saint's tortured them self's silly, other's prayed to suffer like Christ to experience his wounds....life itself just living it ,has it's crosses to bare ,life has it's rainny and sunnyday's not to worry what tommorow bring as the lord tells us ...............
Why is it so difficult to believe Christ forgives totally upon sincere repentance...as far as the east is from the west i shall remember your sin's no more,,The slate is clean hence no purgitory..............
I am trying to understand the Orthodox point of view on this, so please forgive my question. But, suppose a person has unrepented venial sins on his soul at the time of death. What would happen to that person after death? Would he go directly to heaven or directly to hell?
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: stashko on February 18, 2009, 02:17:49 AM
I don't understand what venial sin is ...the church is there to pray for the departed..Family's have memorial services in church for the souls of there loved ones they fast give alms they donate to church maybe a chalice a censor in the departed name...the church also has prays  for the souls that were never prayed over...mentions everyone...and leaves everyone to the great mercy of God who is our hope...the faithful ones fast ,confess, receive absolution , Holy Communion,,are preparing themselves for the end of this life and the beginning of the new eternal life..
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: stanley123 on February 18, 2009, 02:28:07 AM
I don't understand what venial sin is ...the church is there to pray for the departed..Family's have memorial services in church for the souls of there loved ones they fast give alms the donate to church maybe a chalice a censor in the departed name...the church also has prays  for the souls that were never prayed over...mentions everyone...and leaves everyone to the great mercy of God who is our hope...the faithful ones fast ,confess, receive absolution , Holy Communion,,are preparing themselves for the end of this life and the beginning of the new eternal life..
Venial sins in our tradition would be lesser sins that would not merit hell. For example, if you are driving on the freeway, and someone pulls in front of you, and you get angry and swear at that person. Or suppose you borrowed a cheap pen from someone, promising to give it back, but you never did keep your word. In our tradition, that would be a venial sin.
Please forgive me for this question, but what would happen to that person when he died? It seems reasonable to me, that there would be some sort of purification process after which he would be allowed to enter into heaven? Does that seem unreasonable?
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: stashko on February 18, 2009, 02:41:31 AM
Every one will die falling short of the Glory of God..there is no man that liveth that sinneth not..Other than our lord and Saviour ...this is why Jesus came into the world he knows how it is he experienced our weakness..the Lord even said the Spirit is willing But the flesh is weak,,,He knows.. Jesus came to deliver us from  eternal death ...from Satan...Oh Death were is thy sting ,,Oh grave were is thy Victory For Christ Has Risen and set us free...
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: stashko on February 18, 2009, 03:31:36 AM
I don't understand what venial sin is ...the church is there to pray for the departed..Family's have memorial services in church for the souls of there loved ones they fast give alms the donate to church maybe a chalice a censor in the departed name...the church also has prays  for the souls that were never prayed over...mentions everyone...and leaves everyone to the great mercy of God who is our hope...the faithful ones fast ,confess, receive absolution , Holy Communion,,are preparing themselves for the end of this life and the beginning of the new eternal life..
Venial sins in our tradition would be lesser sins that would not merit hell. For example, if you are driving on the freeway, and someone pulls in front of you, and you get angry and swear at that person. Or suppose you borrowed a cheap pen from someone, promising to give it back, but you never did keep your word. In our tradition, that would be a venial sin.
Please forgive me for this question, but what would happen to that person when he died? It seems reasonable to me, that there would be some sort of purification process after which he would be allowed to enter into heaven? Does that seem unreasonable?


Can't a person mentally or vocally say a prayer or repentance for these venial sins that aren't very grievous why would there still be punishment..once one repents and dies suddenly. i don't get it.......wouldn't Christ honor the act...also the victim has to forgive as well the victimizer or the victims own sins won't be forgiven everything then evens out at the end ,Then God Truly forgives both party's hence no pugitory slate wiped clean...
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: stanley123 on February 18, 2009, 04:44:57 AM
I don't understand what venial sin is ...the church is there to pray for the departed..Family's have memorial services in church for the souls of there loved ones they fast give alms the donate to church maybe a chalice a censor in the departed name...the church also has prays  for the souls that were never prayed over...mentions everyone...and leaves everyone to the great mercy of God who is our hope...the faithful ones fast ,confess, receive absolution , Holy Communion,,are preparing themselves for the end of this life and the beginning of the new eternal life..
Venial sins in our tradition would be lesser sins that would not merit hell. For example, if you are driving on the freeway, and someone pulls in front of you, and you get angry and swear at that person. Or suppose you borrowed a cheap pen from someone, promising to give it back, but you never did keep your word. In our tradition, that would be a venial sin.
Please forgive me for this question, but what would happen to that person when he died? It seems reasonable to me, that there would be some sort of purification process after which he would be allowed to enter into heaven? Does that seem unreasonable?


Can't a person mentally or vocally say a prayer or repentance for these venial sins that aren't very grievous why would there still be punishment..once one repents and dies suddenly. i don't get it.......wouldn't Christ honor the act...also the victim has to forgive as well the victimizer or the victims own sins won't be forgiven everything then evens out at the end ,Then God Truly forgives both party's hence no pugitory slate wiped clean...
thanks. What you have said here and above makes a whole lot of sense and gives me something to reflect on as well.
Perhaps I am wrong to press this too much, but I was asking about the case where a person might not have repented of a lesser sin. In such a case, would it be unreasonable to assume that he might undergo some sort of purification before entering heaven?
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Mickey on February 18, 2009, 09:38:43 AM
I was always under the impression that this was in the present tense and thus spoke of Sheol and not heaven or hell proper?

It is a parable. Here is what the late Pope John Paul II says:

"Today's Gospel offers the parable of the "rich man" and poor Lazarus (cf. Lk 16: 19-31). The rich man lives in opulence and luxury oblivious of the beggar lying at his door. But after they die their fate is reversed, Lazarus is carried away to heaven, whilst the rich man falls into the netherworld of torments."
Pope John Paul II




Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Mickey on February 18, 2009, 09:42:28 AM
I reflect on this and many other passages of the Sacred Texts soberly.

If you are going to read the Old Testament and live your life fearful of a vengeful and punishing God, then I can only pray for you.

Yes, every single Liturgy the Orthodox Church asks for Mercy knowing it is not a given.

Are you saying that God's mercy is not a given because we ask for it? Oh my.  :'(
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Mickey on February 18, 2009, 09:46:15 AM
Hmm, my family is from Viterbo province north of Roma---does that make me wise too?  :)

Perhaps.  ;D

On a serious note, if Alex and Mickey weren't so stuck on exaggerated caricatures of actual Catholic teaching on Purgatory, there would be no need for this debate.

Oh how often we hear this argument--it makes me chuckle. If the Roman Catholics would be able to explain this odd and varied and ever changing doctrine, perhaps we would be able to understand.  ;)

Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Mickey on February 18, 2009, 09:48:24 AM
Edit
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Mickey on February 18, 2009, 09:57:14 AM
Perhaps I am wrong to press this too much, but I was asking about the case where a person might not have repented of a lesser sin. In such a case, would it be unreasonable to assume that he might undergo some sort of purification before entering heaven?

God is all merciful and forgiving. Sin is sin. But let us use the Roman Catholic terminology of venial (lesser) sins. God knows our hearts. We know that all will be judged at the final judgement and we will be transformed to live eternally in heaven, or to be separated from God in eternal torments (hell).

Regarding middle places (states) and fire and punishment--we do not know.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Mickey on February 18, 2009, 10:04:57 AM
"For the Lord disciplines him whom he loves, and chastises every son he recieves." -Hebrews 12:6

"For they [our fathers] disciplined us for a short time at their pleasure, but he disciplines us for  our good, that we may share his holiness. For the momoent all discipline seems painful rather than pleasant; later it yields the peaceful fruit of righteousness to those who have been trained by it." Hebrews 12:10-11

I believe everyone here knows that pain and suffering is a part of life in this fleshly world. Christ said to "pick up your cross and follow me".

What is your point?

"But when we are judged by the Lord, we are chastened so that we may not be condemned along with the world."
- 1 Corinthians 11:32

Is St Paul speaking about puragatory here? I think not. 

Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: ignatius on February 18, 2009, 10:11:52 AM
Are you saying that God's mercy is not a given because we ask for it? Oh my.  :'(

No I'm saying that presumption of God's Mercy is not a teaching of the early Church which is why they asked for it.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Mickey on February 18, 2009, 10:18:34 AM
For we have been justified, not by the works of the law that we have done, but by His great mercy.
St Cyril of Alexandria

Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Mickey on February 18, 2009, 10:19:39 AM
Even if we have thousands of acts of great virtue to our credit, our confidence in being heard must be based on God's mercy and His love for men. Even if we stand at the very summit of virtue, it is by mercy that we shall be saved.
St. John Chrysostom

Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Mickey on February 18, 2009, 10:26:59 AM
"Even though we, in our supreme ignorance, childishness, and tendency toward evil, turn away from true life and place many impediments along our path because we really do not like to repent, nevertheless, He has great mercy on us. He patiently waits for us until we will be converted and return to Him...that our faces may not be ashamed in the day of judgment."
St. Macarius the Great

Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: ignatius on February 18, 2009, 10:52:41 AM
For we have been justified, not by the works of the law that we have done, but by His great mercy.
St Cyril of Alexandria

So, are you saying that everyone should presume justification with God?
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Mickey on February 18, 2009, 11:15:31 AM
So, are you saying that everyone should presume justification with God?

Explain your understanding of "justification".
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: AlexanderOfBergamo on February 18, 2009, 11:23:31 AM
Hi to all!
First of all, I resume this topic in stating with no sort of doubt that there's no such thing as venial or mortal sins in Orthodoxy. Every sin is the same by nature: a corruption of the perfect image of God we received in Adam before the fall. Every illness injures our soul in a stronger or less strong way, but God hates "all" sin. God doesn't hate sinners... he hates sin because sin is the cause of our personal separation from Him.

Quote
Will the verses from scripture that I posted be ignored?
I don't ignore the verses you quoted. Their just put out of their contest. All of the aforementioned Scriptural passages (even the Pauline ones) are never referred to purification after death. All of those sufferings are linked to this world and this life, but not to the life to come. Suffering and punishment is a way God uses to educate us and let us learn how sin is a bad thing. This is useless of course to those who are in the afterlife because:
if you're in Paradise, sin has no more power on you.
if you're in Hell, sin can't be abandoned.
if you're in Purgatory, you can't materially sin, but just need to destroy the root of sin which is temptation. God shows us His infinite love so that we might understand all of the evil things we did in our earthly life and yer he forgives us. It is this immense gift of His mercy that moves our soul to refuse all fleshly desires and embrace God's love.

I'm going to add other reasonings when I'm back in... some hours.

In Christ,   Alex





Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: lubeltri on February 18, 2009, 11:52:12 AM
And such as though envolved in mortal sins have not departed in despair, but have, while still living in the body, repented, though without bringing forth any fruits of repentance — by pouring forth tears, forsooth, by kneeling while watching in prayers, by afflicting themselves, by relieving the poor, and in fine by shewing forth by their works their love towards God and their neighbour, and which the Catholic Church hath from the beginning rightly called satisfaction — of these and such like the souls depart into Hades, and there endure the punishment due to the sins they have committed. But they are aware of their future release from thence, and are delivered by the Supreme Goodness, through the prayers of the Priests, and the good works which the relatives of each do for their Departed; especially the unbloody Sacrifice availing in the highest degree; which each offereth particularly for his relatives that have fallen asleep, and which the Catholic and Apostolic Church offereth daily for all alike; it being, of course, understood that we know not the time of their release. For that there is deliverance for such from their direful condition, and that before the common resurrection and judgment we know and believe; but when we know not.

Holy Synod of Jerusalem, 1672
Chapter VI, Decree XVIII


In Greek:

Τοὺς δὲ συμφθαρέντας θανασίμοις πλημμελήμασι καὶ μὴ ἐν ἀπογνώσει ἀποδημήσαντας ἀλλὰ μετανοήσαντας μὲν, ἔτι περιόντας ἐν τῷ μετὰ σώματος βίῳ, μὴ ποιήσαντας δὲ οὐδοτιοῦν καρπὸν μετανοίας—ἐκχέαι δάκρυα δηλονότι καὶ γονυπετῆσαι ἐν γρηγορήσει προσευχῶν, θλιβῆναι, πτωχοὺς παραμυθῆσαι, καὶ τέως ἐν ἔργοις τὴν πρὸς τὸν Θεὸν καὶ τὸν πλησίον ἀγάπην ἐπιδεῖξαι, ἃ καὶ ἱκανοποίησιν καλῶς ἡ καθολικὴ ἐκκλησία ἀπ᾿ ἀρχῆς ὠνόμασε—τούτων καὶ αὐτῶν τὰς ψυχὰς ἀπέρχεσθαι εἰς ᾄδου καὶ ὑπομένειν τῶν ἕνεκα ὧν εἰργάσαντο ἁμαρτημάτων ποινήν. Εἶναι δ᾿ ἐν συναισθήσει τῆς ἐκεῖθεν ἀπαλλαγῆς, ἐλευθεροῦσθαι δὲ ὑπὸ τῆς ἄκρας ἀγαθότητος διὰ τῆς δεήσεως τῶς ἱερέων καὶ εὐποιϊῶν, ἃ τῶν ἀποιχομένων ἕνεκα οἱ ἑκάστου συγγενεῖς ἀποτελοῦσι· μεγάλα δυναμένης μάλιστα τῆς ἀναιμάκτου θυσίας, ἣν ἰδίως ὑπὲρ τῶς κεκοιμημένων συγγενῶν ἕκαστος καὶ κοινῶς ὑπὲρ πάντων ἡ καθολικὴ καὶ ἀποστολικὴ ὁσημέραι ποιεῖ ἐκκλησία· ἐννοουμένου μέντοι καὶ τούτου τοῦ μὴ εἰδέναι ἡμᾶς δηλαδὴ τὸν καιρὸν τῆς ἀπαλλαγῆς. Ὅτι γὰρ γίνεται ἐλευθερία τῶν τοιούτων, ἀπὸ τῶν δεινῶν καὶ πρὸ τῆς κοινῆς ἀναστάσεώς τε καὶ κρίσεως οἴδαμεν καὶ πιστεύομεν· πότε δὲ, ἀγνοοῦμεν.

In Latin:

Eorum vero, qui peccatis impliciti non in desperatione defuncti sunt, sed quos adhuc superstites pœnituit, at nullum fecerunt pœnitentiæ fructum, lacrimas videlicet effundendo genibus flexis in orationibus vigilando, semet ipsos afflictando, pauperes recreando, suam denique tum in Deum, quum in proximum caritatem operibus demonstrando, quæ et Catholica Ecclesia recte ab initio satisfactiones appellavit, horum, inquam, ipsorum animas credimus ad inferos abire ibique justas pro iis, quæ commisere, peccatis pœnas sustinere, at suæ tamen exhinc futuræ liberationis esse conscias et ab summa bonitate per sacerdotum orationes et eleemosynas, quas pro defunctis eorum propinqui faciunt, liberari. Ad hoc vero potissime valet incruentum Missæ sacrificium, quod peculiariter singuli pro consanguineis defunctis, Catholica vero et Apostolica Ecclesia quotidie pro omnibus communiter facit. Porro liberationis hujusmodi notum nobis esse tempus nequaquam dicimus; tales enim solvi quidem pœnis; idque ante resurrectionem et universale judicium et scimus et credimus; id vero, quando fiat, ignoramus.


-

Mark of Ephesus did not believe in a purgatorial fire---instead he believed
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Papist on February 18, 2009, 11:52:15 AM
"For the Lord disciplines him whom he loves, and chastises every son he recieves." -Hebrews 12:6

"For they [our fathers] disciplined us for a short time at their pleasure, but he disciplines us for  our good, that we may share his holiness. For the momoent all discipline seems painful rather than pleasant; later it yields the peaceful fruit of righteousness to those who have been trained by it." Hebrews 12:10-11

I believe everyone here knows that pain and suffering is a part of life in this fleshly world. Christ said to "pick up your cross and follow me".

What is your point?

"But when we are judged by the Lord, we are chastened so that we may not be condemned along with the world."
- 1 Corinthians 11:32

Is St Paul speaking about puragatory here? I think not. 


I was not even addressing purgatory. I was talking about your false idea that God does not punish us. He in fact does.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: lubeltri on February 18, 2009, 12:04:12 PM
Hi to all!
First of all, I resume this topic in stating with no sort of doubt that there's no such thing as venial or mortal sins in Orthodoxy. Every sin is the same by nature: a corruption of the perfect image of God we received in Adam before the fall. Every illness injures our soul in a stronger or less strong way, but God hates "all" sin. God doesn't hate sinners... he hates sin because sin is the cause of our personal separation from Him.

Judging from this, you clearly do not understand what the Catholic Church teaches about "mortal" and "venial" sins---somewhat surprising, since you grew up a Catholic.

Of course God hates all sin---that is not under dispute. Pointing that out to us makes it seem as if you think we do not believe this.

You say, "Every illness injures our soul in a stronger or less strong way." That is exactly what is behind the distinction between mortal and venial---the extent of the injury caused upon the soul.

I think this explains it well:

Mortal sins for Christians are the next: heresy, schism, blasphemy, apostasy, witchery, despair, suicide, fornication, adultery, unnatural carnal sins, incest, drunkenness, sacrilege, murder, theft, robbery, and every cruel and brutal injury. Only one of this sins- suicide- cannot be healed by repentance, and every one of them slays the soul and makes the soul incapable of eternal bliss, until she cleans herself with due repentance. If a man falls but once in any of this sins, he dies by soul.
Saint Ignatius Brianchaninov, A Word on Death

Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Papist on February 18, 2009, 12:04:13 PM
Hi to all!
First of all, I resume this topic in stating with no sort of doubt that there's no such thing as venial or mortal sins in Orthodoxy. Every sin is the same by nature: a corruption of the perfect image of God we received in Adam before the fall. Every illness injures our soul in a stronger or less strong way, but God hates "all" sin. God doesn't hate sinners... he hates sin because sin is the cause of our personal separation from Him.

Quote
Will the verses from scripture that I posted be ignored?
I don't ignore the verses you quoted. Their just put out of their contest. All of the aforementioned Scriptural passages (even the Pauline ones) are never referred to purification after death. All of those sufferings are linked to this world and this life, but not to the life to come. Suffering and punishment is a way God uses to educate us and let us learn how sin is a bad thing. This is useless of course to those who are in the afterlife because:
if you're in Paradise, sin has no more power on you.
if you're in Hell, sin can't be abandoned.
if you're in Purgatory, you can't materially sin, but just need to destroy the root of sin which is temptation. God shows us His infinite love so that we might understand all of the evil things we did in our earthly life and yer he forgives us. It is this immense gift of His mercy that moves our soul to refuse all fleshly desires and embrace God's love.

I'm going to add other reasonings when I'm back in... some hours.

In Christ,   Alex






Again I was not addressing purgatory with these verses. I was only addressing your false idea that God does not punihs us.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Mickey on February 18, 2009, 12:06:02 PM
I was not even addressing purgatory.

Okay.

I was talking about your false idea that God does not punish us. He in fact does.

God allows us to suffer. We punish ourselves. God does not inflict pain and wrath on us out of vengence and anger. God is not subject to the passions.

And since this thread is about purgatory and indulgences, perhaps this side bar should be split?
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Ebor on February 18, 2009, 12:17:11 PM
A quote from C. S. Lewis, an Anglican:

"  Our souls demand Purgatory, don't they? Would it not break the heart if God said to us, 'It is true, my son, that your breath smells and your rags drip with mud and slime, but we are charitable here and no one will upbraid you with these things, nor draw away from you. Enter into the joy'? Should we not reply, 'With submission, sir, and if there is no objection, I'd rather be cleaned first.' 'It may hurt, you know' - 'Even so, sir.'

I assume that the process of purification will normally involve suffering. Partly from tradition; partly because most real good that has been done me in this life has involved it. But I don't think the suffering is the purpose of the purgation. I can well believe that people neither much worse nor much better than I will suffer less than I or more. . . . The treatment given will be the one required, whether it hurts little or much."


Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Myrrh23 on February 18, 2009, 12:23:47 PM
Papist, if your wife did something to displease you, would you hit her to teach her a lesson? If you think it works for a child, why not go about slugging your wife as well? After all, isn't that good discipline? Islam certainly thinks so. Wonder if that makes you a Muslim rather than a Christian. ::)
I'm not married. I don't have children. My parents punished us through spankings when we were young and looking back it was a good deterent. I'm glad my parents didn't buy into the liberal nonsense of "no spanking" that our modern society wants us all to buy into.

Oh yes, let's use violence to teach our children how to be good. Your words are sick, Papist. How much bigger and stronger were your parents than you and yet they think it's okay to strike their child, even if it's on the behind. Why is it that some people think it's okay to raise a hand to our children, but it's suddenly assault when done to an adult? Why don't our priests raise a hand to us when we're bad? After all, isn't it considered "good discipline"?
And for the record, I don't have any kids, either. I don't need kids to know that spanking can never be done in love, because spanking is just another form of assault!
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Papist on February 18, 2009, 12:39:38 PM
I was not even addressing purgatory.

Okay.

I was talking about your false idea that God does not punish us. He in fact does.

God allows us to suffer. We punish ourselves. God does not inflict pain and wrath on us out of vengence and anger. God is not subject to the passions.

And since this thread is about purgatory and indulgences, perhaps this side bar should be split?
So you don't agree with the bible? I see....
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Papist on February 18, 2009, 12:39:52 PM
A quote from C. S. Lewis, an Anglican:

"  Our souls demand Purgatory, don't they? Would it not break the heart if God said to us, 'It is true, my son, that your breath smells and your rags drip with mud and slime, but we are charitable here and no one will upbraid you with these things, nor draw away from you. Enter into the joy'? Should we not reply, 'With submission, sir, and if there is no objection, I'd rather be cleaned first.' 'It may hurt, you know' - 'Even so, sir.'

I assume that the process of purification will normally involve suffering. Partly from tradition; partly because most real good that has been done me in this life has involved it. But I don't think the suffering is the purpose of the purgation. I can well believe that people neither much worse nor much better than I will suffer less than I or more. . . . The treatment given will be the one required, whether it hurts little or much."



C.S. Lewis' discussions on purgatory are just about my favorite. He has a great way of bringing theology to a place of common sense.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Papist on February 18, 2009, 12:45:37 PM
Papist, if your wife did something to displease you, would you hit her to teach her a lesson? If you think it works for a child, why not go about slugging your wife as well? After all, isn't that good discipline? Islam certainly thinks so. Wonder if that makes you a Muslim rather than a Christian. ::)
I'm not married. I don't have children. My parents punished us through spankings when we were young and looking back it was a good deterent. I'm glad my parents didn't buy into the liberal nonsense of "no spanking" that our modern society wants us all to buy into.

Oh yes, let's use violence to teach our children how to be good. Your words are sick, Papist. How much bigger and stronger were your parents than you and yet they think it's okay to strike their child, even if it's on the behind. Why is it that some people think it's okay to raise a hand to our children, but it's suddenly assault when done to an adult? Why don't our priests raise a hand to us when we're bad? After all, isn't it considered "good discipline"?
And for the record, I don't have any kids, either. I don't need kids to know that spanking can never be done in love, because spanking is just another form of assault!
I guess you don't believe in the bible either. "Spare the rod spoil the child." But if you want to discuss spanking there is another thread for that. The moderator has asked that we keep the discussion on temporal punishment from the hands of God.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Mickey on February 18, 2009, 12:55:03 PM
Oh yes, let's use violence to teach our children how to be good. Your words are sick, Papist. How much bigger and stronger were your parents than you and yet they think it's okay to strike their child, even if it's on the behind. Why is it that some people think it's okay to raise a hand to our children, but it's suddenly assault when done to an adult? Why don't our priests raise a hand to us when we're bad? After all, isn't it considered "good discipline"?
And for the record, I don't have any kids, either. I don't need kids to know that spanking can never be done in love, because spanking is just another form of assault!

Amen. And yet papist calls me a modernist and liberal for not spanking my child.

Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Mickey on February 18, 2009, 12:56:49 PM
So you don't agree with the bible? I see....

No, you do not see....and if you claim that I do not believe in the Bible one more time...I will report you for your insults.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Mickey on February 18, 2009, 12:58:09 PM
I guess you don't believe in the bible either.

You had to do it again, eh?
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Innocent on February 18, 2009, 12:59:50 PM
Papist, if your wife did something to displease you, would you hit her to teach her a lesson? If you think it works for a child, why not go about slugging your wife as well? After all, isn't that good discipline? Islam certainly thinks so. Wonder if that makes you a Muslim rather than a Christian. ::)
I'm not married. I don't have children. My parents punished us through spankings when we were young and looking back it was a good deterent. I'm glad my parents didn't buy into the liberal nonsense of "no spanking" that our modern society wants us all to buy into.

Oh yes, let's use violence to teach our children how to be good. Your words are sick, Papist. How much bigger and stronger were your parents than you and yet they think it's okay to strike their child, even if it's on the behind. Why is it that some people think it's okay to raise a hand to our children, but it's suddenly assault when done to an adult? Why don't our priests raise a hand to us when we're bad? After all, isn't it considered "good discipline"?
And for the record, I don't have any kids, either. I don't need kids to know that spanking can never be done in love, because spanking is just another form of assault!

Why is it that anytime the spanking argument is done the anti-spanking folks feel the need to compare spanking adults as a corrective measure to spanking <10 year olds? Its not the same you don't punish a criminal the same way you would a teen aged person for breaking curfew do you? To call his words sick when it is you who compared him and I guess by extension those who believe in spankings as muslim rather than Christian is kind of sick don't you think?

If you disagree fine but why resort to bad comparisons an personnel attacks if your argument is so strong?
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: PeterTheAleut on February 18, 2009, 01:09:13 PM
So you don't agree with the bible? I see....

No, you do not see....and if you claim that I do not believe in the Bible one more time...I will report you for your insults.
IOW:  "I'm gonna tell on you!"
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Papist on February 18, 2009, 01:11:16 PM
Oh yes, let's use violence to teach our children how to be good. Your words are sick, Papist. How much bigger and stronger were your parents than you and yet they think it's okay to strike their child, even if it's on the behind. Why is it that some people think it's okay to raise a hand to our children, but it's suddenly assault when done to an adult? Why don't our priests raise a hand to us when we're bad? After all, isn't it considered "good discipline"?
And for the record, I don't have any kids, either. I don't need kids to know that spanking can never be done in love, because spanking is just another form of assault!

Amen. And yet papist calls me a modernist and liberal for not spanking my child.

Sick indeed!
More proof that you don't believe in the scriptures. "Spare the rod spoil the child" I think its sick that you don't take the initiative to provide real discipline for your children. I was never traumatized when I was spanked becuase my parents didn't beat me. They never took it that far. But I guess you will jump to absurd conclusions in the same way that you jump to absurd conclusions when dealing with Catholicism.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Papist on February 18, 2009, 01:11:17 PM
I guess you don't believe in the bible either.

You had to do it again, eh?
Well, you continue to provide more evidence that you don't believe in the bible. I can only assume that this is true based on what you have said in this thread. If you do believe in the bible, then submitt to it and accept the scriptural teachings that God does punish us and that its not fun but that he does it for out own good.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Papist on February 18, 2009, 01:11:17 PM
Oh yes, let's use violence to teach our children how to be good. Your words are sick, Papist. How much bigger and stronger were your parents than you and yet they think it's okay to strike their child, even if it's on the behind. Why is it that some people think it's okay to raise a hand to our children, but it's suddenly assault when done to an adult? Why don't our priests raise a hand to us when we're bad? After all, isn't it considered "good discipline"?
And for the record, I don't have any kids, either. I don't need kids to know that spanking can never be done in love, because spanking is just another form of assault!

Amen. And yet papist calls me a modernist and liberal for not spanking my child.


I didn't call you a modernist. I just think you have one particularly modernist view. Overall you are faily orthodox. Just in this one instance you have succumb to modernist thinking. We all have our faults. No one is perfect. For example, I can very uncharitable online at times but I am working on it. Likewise, in this matter you should move away from a more modernist view point towards a more scriptural one.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Papist on February 18, 2009, 01:11:18 PM
And such as though envolved in mortal sins have not departed in despair, but have, while still living in the body, repented, though without bringing forth any fruits of repentance — by pouring forth tears, forsooth, by kneeling while watching in prayers, by afflicting themselves, by relieving the poor, and in fine by shewing forth by their works their love towards God and their neighbour, and which the Catholic Church hath from the beginning rightly called satisfaction — of these and such like the souls depart into Hades, and there endure the punishment due to the sins they have committed. But they are aware of their future release from thence, and are delivered by the Supreme Goodness, through the prayers of the Priests, and the good works which the relatives of each do for their Departed; especially the unbloody Sacrifice availing in the highest degree; which each offereth particularly for his relatives that have fallen asleep, and which the Catholic and Apostolic Church offereth daily for all alike; it being, of course, understood that we know not the time of their release. For that there is deliverance for such from their direful condition, and that before the common resurrection and judgment we know and believe; but when we know not.

Holy Synod of Jerusalem, 1672
Chapter VI, Decree XVIII


In Greek:

Τοὺς δὲ συμφθαρέντας θανασίμοις πλημμελήμασι καὶ μὴ ἐν ἀπογνώσει ἀποδημήσαντας ἀλλὰ μετανοήσαντας μὲν, ἔτι περιόντας ἐν τῷ μετὰ σώματος βίῳ, μὴ ποιήσαντας δὲ οὐδοτιοῦν καρπὸν μετανοίας—ἐκχέαι δάκρυα δηλονότι καὶ γονυπετῆσαι ἐν γρηγορήσει προσευχῶν, θλιβῆναι, πτωχοὺς παραμυθῆσαι, καὶ τέως ἐν ἔργοις τὴν πρὸς τὸν Θεὸν καὶ τὸν πλησίον ἀγάπην ἐπιδεῖξαι, ἃ καὶ ἱκανοποίησιν καλῶς ἡ καθολικὴ ἐκκλησία ἀπ᾿ ἀρχῆς ὠνόμασε—τούτων καὶ αὐτῶν τὰς ψυχὰς ἀπέρχεσθαι εἰς ᾄδου καὶ ὑπομένειν τῶν ἕνεκα ὧν εἰργάσαντο ἁμαρτημάτων ποινήν. Εἶναι δ᾿ ἐν συναισθήσει τῆς ἐκεῖθεν ἀπαλλαγῆς, ἐλευθεροῦσθαι δὲ ὑπὸ τῆς ἄκρας ἀγαθότητος διὰ τῆς δεήσεως τῶς ἱερέων καὶ εὐποιϊῶν, ἃ τῶν ἀποιχομένων ἕνεκα οἱ ἑκάστου συγγενεῖς ἀποτελοῦσι· μεγάλα δυναμένης μάλιστα τῆς ἀναιμάκτου θυσίας, ἣν ἰδίως ὑπὲρ τῶς κεκοιμημένων συγγενῶν ἕκαστος καὶ κοινῶς ὑπὲρ πάντων ἡ καθολικὴ καὶ ἀποστολικὴ ὁσημέραι ποιεῖ ἐκκλησία· ἐννοουμένου μέντοι καὶ τούτου τοῦ μὴ εἰδέναι ἡμᾶς δηλαδὴ τὸν καιρὸν τῆς ἀπαλλαγῆς. Ὅτι γὰρ γίνεται ἐλευθερία τῶν τοιούτων, ἀπὸ τῶν δεινῶν καὶ πρὸ τῆς κοινῆς ἀναστάσεώς τε καὶ κρίσεως οἴδαμεν καὶ πιστεύομεν· πότε δὲ, ἀγνοοῦμεν.

In Latin:

Eorum vero, qui peccatis impliciti non in desperatione defuncti sunt, sed quos adhuc superstites pœnituit, at nullum fecerunt pœnitentiæ fructum, lacrimas videlicet effundendo genibus flexis in orationibus vigilando, semet ipsos afflictando, pauperes recreando, suam denique tum in Deum, quum in proximum caritatem operibus demonstrando, quæ et Catholica Ecclesia recte ab initio satisfactiones appellavit, horum, inquam, ipsorum animas credimus ad inferos abire ibique justas pro iis, quæ commisere, peccatis pœnas sustinere, at suæ tamen exhinc futuræ liberationis esse conscias et ab summa bonitate per sacerdotum orationes et eleemosynas, quas pro defunctis eorum propinqui faciunt, liberari. Ad hoc vero potissime valet incruentum Missæ sacrificium, quod peculiariter singuli pro consanguineis defunctis, Catholica vero et Apostolica Ecclesia quotidie pro omnibus communiter facit. Porro liberationis hujusmodi notum nobis esse tempus nequaquam dicimus; tales enim solvi quidem pœnis; idque ante resurrectionem et universale judicium et scimus et credimus; id vero, quando fiat, ignoramus.


-

Mark of Ephesus did not believe in a purgatorial fire---instead he believed

Luberti this is a great reference. Can you point me to the source? I have often heard that during this time period the Eastern Orthodox Church was much more similar to the Catholic Church.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: ignatius on February 18, 2009, 01:14:50 PM
Explain your understanding of "justification".

By grace ye are saved through faith. ~ Ephesians 2:8

How is Justification defined in classic Christian teaching... based on Sacred Scripture, Ancient Ecumenical Consensual Teaching and the Eastern Church Fathers?

I hear a lot of fellow Orthodox belittling Justification and in doing belittling the Sacred Scriptures and the Apostolic Traditions which are the very ground of our faith.

What is Justification? Justification is the declaration of God that one who trusts in Christ's atoning work, however sinful, is treated or accounted as righteous. This credited righteousness is received by faith.

This is not to be viewed as if it were merely a legal fiction, or as a fantasy imagined in God's mind, or as a human hypothetical conjecture. This uprighted relation with the holy God comes about as a decisive, merciful divine act, an actual event in history that occurs on the cross.

Justification is the reversal of God's judgment against the sinner, in which the sinner is declared to be no longer exposed to the penalty of the law, which is ultimately spiritual death, but restored to divine favor. Justification is that divine act by which one stands now in the right relation with God. It is an act of God's free grace through which the sinner is absolved from guilt and accepted as righteous on account of the Son's atoning work.

Justification is the pardoning act of the supreme Judge of all, by which he pardons 'all' the sins of those who trust in the pardoning work of Christ in our place on the cross. In this way the righteousness of Christ is applied to the believer.

It is not that the law is blandly relaxed or dishonestly set aside. Rather, the law is declared to be fulfilled in an even stricter sense: by the Judge himself, his own sacrificial offering of himself as he himself fulfills the requirements of the law for us! This happens by imputing or crediting to the believer by God himself the perfect righteousness of his representative and guarantee: God the Son, Jesus Christ (Rom. 10:3-9). Justification is not the forgiveness of a man without righteousness, but a declaration that he possesses a righteousness that perfectly and forever satisfies the law, namely Christ's righteousness (2 Cor. 5:21; Rom. 4:6-8). The sole condition on which this righteousness is imputed or credited to the believer is faith in the Lord Jesus Christ, who is at the same time truly man and truly God.

Justification is the opposite of condemnation. One is justified who is viewed as right with the Judge, the law, and the Lawgiver (Apology of the Augsburg Confession, IV). The justifying Judge declares that all the requirements of the law are entirely satisfied. The person justified is declared to be entitled to all the advantages and rewards arising from the perfect obedience to the law (Rom. 5:1-10).

Hence this simple formula is often heard in Protestant teaching on justification:

its Source: God.
its Nature: a gracious act.
its Elements: pardon and acceptance.
its Scope: all believers.
its Ground: the imputed righteousness of Christ.
its Condition: faith alone.

Justification does not result from higher commitment to greater ideals or more advanced actualization of good character or better performance of the demands of the law. It is solely due to a declaration of God's merciful attitude toward the sinner whose life is hid in Christ.

Early Eastern Voices on Justification:

Key textual evidence from Origen, John Chrysostom, and Theodoret of Cyrrhus show that leading eastern patristic writers anticipated standard classic Reformation teaching on justification.

The leading biblical interpreter from the great school of Antioch, Theodoret of Cyrrhus, in his fourth-century commentary on the epistles of Paul, reflected on Ephesians 2:8, "For by grace you have been saved through faith," in this way: "All we bring to grace is our faith. But even in this faith, divine grace itself has become our enabler. For [Paul] adds, 'And this is not of yourselves but it is a gift of God; not of works, lest anyone should boast (Eph. 2:8-9).' It is not of our own accord that we have believed, but we have come to belief after having been called; and even when we had come to believe, He did not require of us purity of life, but approving mere faith, God bestowed on us forgiveness of sins" (Interpretation of the Fourteen Epistles of Paul). A thousand years before Luther.

A generation before Theodoret, John Chrysostom had expressly stated: "So that you may not be elated by the magnitude of these benefits, see how Paul puts you in your place. For 'by grace you are saved,' he says, 'through faith'. Then, so as to do no injury to free will, he allots a role to us, then takes it away again, saying 'and this not of ourselves.'.... Even faith, he says, is not from us. For if he Lord had not come, if he had not called us, how should we have been able to believe? 'For how,' [Paul] says, 'shall they believe if they have not heard?' (Rom. 10:14). So even the act of faith is not self-initiated. It is, he says, 'the gift of God' (Eph. 2:8c)." So writes Chrysostom at the end of the fourth century (Hom. of Ephesians 2:Cool.

In asking why boasting is excluded, Origen commented on Romans 3:28, "For we hold that a man is justified by faith apart from works of law." "If an example is required," remarked Origen, "I think it must suffice to mention the thief on the cross, who asked Christ to save him and was told, 'Truly, this day you will be with me in paradise' (Luke 23:43).... A man is justified by faith. The works of the law can make no contribution to this. Where there is no faith which might justify the one who does them, because faith is lacking, and faith is the mark of those who are justified by God" (Commentary on the Epistle to the Romans). So was justification by faith alone understood before the Reformers? The texts make this undeniable. These examples make it clear that justification teaching was rightly understood among the eastern patristic writers in a way that classic Reformation writers would have every reason to respect.

Actually John Wesley spoke at St. Mary's at Oxford in 1738 which I find to be a wonderful expression of what I believe even though I am not a Methodist. http://new.gbgm-umc.org/umhistory/wesley/sermons/1/ (http://new.gbgm-umc.org/umhistory/wesley/sermons/1/)

Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: AlexanderOfBergamo on February 18, 2009, 01:18:47 PM
Wow this discussion is getting harder and harder...
As I just said, I DON'T DENY that God punishes us. But I admit that the way Mickey interpreted this punishment is almost the same that mine: sinning we cast ourselves outside of Paradise. Did God really punish Adam and Eve? No. He said what the consequences of sin were, yet they sinned and sinning they expelled themselves from Heaven. The same we do everytime we sin.

I add this to lubeltri: as you maybe don't know because of your Catholicity, not all Councils of Orthodoxy are considered binding. The so-called Panorthodox Synod of Jerusalem (sometimes called of Bethlehem) was indeed never applied. Many proofs can be shown of this. For example we don't use the word transubstantiation for the Eucharistic mystery, yet this council used it. The doctrine you can see exposed there, as you can see, doesn't use words such as purgatory, of course. And as far as I know, only two councils held after Nicea II are considered binding (and sometimes - by some groups, I mean) even Ecumenical: the 4th and 5th Ecumenical Councils held in Constantinople.

I think that the true distance between our theologies is due to how you don't understand a need for SYNERGY. Saying that God punishes actively the sinners by a decision as a judge is wrong... But saying - as Ebor showed with Lewis' words - that it's the soul that asks for punishment, this is another question.
Yet, I don't think that imposing Purgatory as a dogma you MUST believe otherwise you'll be heretic, when even the Church fathers never found agreement on this topic, is just a way to divide rather then unite. Do you want REAL unity with us? Renounce you dogmas, and if you want keep them as a personal opinion.

In Christ   Alex
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Papist on February 18, 2009, 01:19:06 PM
JUSTIFICATION: Furthermore, through justification, God literal makes us Just. He doesn't just imagine that we are but, rather, through pour of Sanctifying (deifying) grace into our souls, God makes us literally holy. Not perfect mind you since we still have concupiscience and when we sin we damage this holiness but he changes us and begins the process of theosis through justification.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Papist on February 18, 2009, 01:19:19 PM
So you don't agree with the bible? I see....

No, you do not see....and if you claim that I do not believe in the Bible one more time...I will report you for your insults.
Mickey I'm not trying to insult you. You have stated over and over again that you don't think God punishes but the bible clearly teaches that he does. So you disagree with the bible on this matter. How is that an insult? I would hope that we could deal with these issues online like adults.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Mickey on February 18, 2009, 01:26:47 PM
If you do believe in the bible, then submitt to it and accept the scriptural teachings that God does punish us and that its not fun but that he does it for out own good.

Poppycock! You have interpreted the Holy Scriptures to present a vengeful passionate filled God that punishes. Shame on you! You are like the the sola Scriptura people who twist the Scriptures to their own detriment.

"God is good, without passions and unchangeable. One who understands that it is sound and true to affirm that God does not change might very well ask: `how, then, is it possible to speak of God as rejoicing over those who are good, becoming merciful to those who know Him and, on the other hand, shunning the wicked and being angry with sinners?' We must reply to this, that God neither rejoices nor grows angry, because to rejoice and to be angered are passions. Nor is God won over by gifts from those who know Him, for that would mean that He is moved by pleasure. It is not possible for the Godhead to have the sensation of pleasure or displeasure from the condition of humans. God is good, and He bestows only blessings, and never causes harm, but remains always the same. If we humans, however, remain good by means of resembling Him, we are united to Him, but if we become evil by losing our resemblance to God, we are separated from Him. By living in a holy manner, we unite ourselves to God; by becoming evil, however, we become at enmity with Him. It is not that He arbitrarily becomes angry with us, but that our sins prevent God from shining within us, and exposes us to the demons who make us suffer. If through prayer and acts of compassionate love, we gain freedom from our sins, this does not mean that we have won God over and made Him change, but rather that by means of our actions and turning to God, we have been healed of our wickedness, and returned to the enjoyment of God's goodness. To say that God turns away from the sinful is like saying that the sun hides itself from the blind".  
(St. Antony the Great, Cap. 150).
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Mickey on February 18, 2009, 01:31:16 PM
I didn't call you a modernist. I just think you have one particularly modernist view.

I see. I am not a modernist, but I have a modernist view because I do not spank my children.  :-\

Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Entscheidungsproblem on February 18, 2009, 01:38:20 PM
Please stay on topic everyone and stay away from personal attacks.  This thread will be locked if it continues to spiral out of control, which is a shame, since many Orthodox members have a skewed view of the official RC teachings of purgatory and many converts from Roman Catholicism struggle with the "condition" of purgatory during their conversion and well after.  This thread should be used to remove misconceptions and for a civil discussion/debate.

-- Nebelpfade
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Mickey on February 18, 2009, 01:41:05 PM
What is Justification? Justification is the declaration of God that one who trusts in Christ's atoning work, however sinful, is treated or accounted as righteous. This credited righteousness is received by faith.

This is not to be viewed as if it were merely a legal fiction, or as a fantasy imagined in God's mind, or as a human hypothetical conjecture. This uprighted relation with the holy God comes about as a decisive, merciful divine act, an actual event in history that occurs on the cross.

Justification is the reversal of God's judgment against the sinner, in which the sinner is declared to be no longer exposed to the penalty of the law, which is ultimately spiritual death, but restored to divine favor. Justification is that divine act by which one stands now in the right relation with God. It is an act of God's free grace through which the sinner is absolved from guilt and accepted as righteous on account of the Son's atoning work...................

Does not seem to leave much room for purgatory.  ;)
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Mickey on February 18, 2009, 01:51:12 PM
You have stated over and over again that you don't think God punishes but the bible clearly teaches that he does. So you disagree with the bible on this matter.

Your undersatnding is skewed.  Read St Antony's quote again.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Mickey on February 18, 2009, 01:54:25 PM
The so-called Panorthodox Synod of Jerusalem (sometimes called of Bethlehem) was indeed never applied.

And if I am not mistaken, I believe that I read somewhere that many things from the Synod were recanted.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Papist on February 18, 2009, 01:54:43 PM
You have stated over and over again that you don't think God punishes but the bible clearly teaches that he does. So you disagree with the bible on this matter.

Your undersatnding is skewed.  Read St Antony's quote again.
I'm not concerned with St. Antony's quote. I am concerned with the scriptures clearly and plainly states. I am still waiting for you to address that matter.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Mickey on February 18, 2009, 01:57:26 PM
JUSTIFICATION: Furthermore, through justification, God literal makes us Just.

If I am not mistaken, The Orthodox typically describe salvation in terms not of justification, but as deification (theosis).
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: ignatius on February 18, 2009, 01:57:39 PM
What is Justification? Justification is the declaration of God that one who trusts in Christ's atoning work, however sinful, is treated or accounted as righteous. This credited righteousness is received by faith.

This is not to be viewed as if it were merely a legal fiction, or as a fantasy imagined in God's mind, or as a human hypothetical conjecture. This uprighted relation with the holy God comes about as a decisive, merciful divine act, an actual event in history that occurs on the cross.

Justification is the reversal of God's judgment against the sinner, in which the sinner is declared to be no longer exposed to the penalty of the law, which is ultimately spiritual death, but restored to divine favor. Justification is that divine act by which one stands now in the right relation with God. It is an act of God's free grace through which the sinner is absolved from guilt and accepted as righteous on account of the Son's atoning work...................

Does not seem to leave much room for purgatory.  ;)

I think it was Wesley who said, "To despair of being saved by their own works, their own merits or righteousness. And so it ought; for none can trust in the merits of Christ til he has utterly renounced his own. He that 'goeth about to establish his own righteousness' cannot receive the righteousness of God."

So that begs the question, how do we know that we are Justified? And more so, how do we remain within God's Grace? At what point do we make a shipwreck of our salvation? And what can we do about that?
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Papist on February 18, 2009, 02:00:04 PM
If you do believe in the bible, then submitt to it and accept the scriptural teachings that God does punish us and that its not fun but that he does it for out own good.

Poppycock! You have interpreted the Holy Scriptures to present a vengeful passionate filled God that punishes. Shame on you! You are like the the sola Scriptura people who twist the Scriptures to their own detriment.


I think you may have this backward. I am merely supporiting the clear and plain meaning of scripture. To do otherwise would be to twist it. Thus, I have twisted nothing but, rather, adhere to the scriptural teaching that God
1. Punishes us.
2. Its painful/not fun.[
3. That it is for my own good.
I am not sure what you have to base your arguements on but I have provided objective support for my view.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Papist on February 18, 2009, 02:00:09 PM
JUSTIFICATION: Furthermore, through justification, God literal makes us Just.

If I am not mistaken, The Orthodox typically describe salvation in terms not of justification, but as deification (theosis).
That is true. The Catholic Church uses both images to describe salvation.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Mickey on February 18, 2009, 02:00:19 PM
I'm not concerned with St. Antony's quote. I am concerned with the scriptures clearly and plainly states. I am still waiting for you to address that matter.

I have addressed it. Alex has addressed it also. If you do not accept it--so be it. St Antony the great explains it perfectly--much better than I ever could.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Mickey on February 18, 2009, 02:02:55 PM
Thus, I have twisted nothing but, rather, adhere to the scriptural teaching that God
1. Punishes us.
2. Its painful/not fun.[
3. That it is for my own good.
I am not sure what you have to base your arguements on but I have provided objective support for my view.

If you have decided to adhere to the picture of a punishing vengeful God, then there is nothing more I say to you.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Papist on February 18, 2009, 02:05:02 PM
I'm not concerned with St. Antony's quote. I am concerned with the scriptures clearly and plainly states. I am still waiting for you to address that matter.

I have addressed it. Alex has addressed it also. If you do not accept it--so be it. St Antony the great explains it perfectly--much better than I ever could.
But you have not addressed. You have just said that you don't believe God punishes us over and over again. That is not addressing my point nor the evidence that I have provided. That is simply asserting your position again. Again, I have provided evidence (very solid evidence) from an objective source (the bible) that God punishes us, its not fun, and its for our own good. You have yet to refute that evidence so I must assume that this debate ends in favor of the Catholic position.

P.S. I am not  convinced that your idea that God does not punish us is even in keeping with the Eastern Orhtodox faith.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Papist on February 18, 2009, 02:06:24 PM
Thus, I have twisted nothing but, rather, adhere to the scriptural teaching that God
1. Punishes us.
2. Its painful/not fun.[
3. That it is for my own good.
I am not sure what you have to base your arguements on but I have provided objective support for my view.

If you have decided to adhere to the picture of a punishing vengeful God, then there is nothing more I say to you.
Why not address the image of God painted in the Scripute: Merciful AND Just.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Papist on February 18, 2009, 02:10:10 PM
Thus, I have twisted nothing but, rather, adhere to the scriptural teaching that God
1. Punishes us.
2. Its painful/not fun.[
3. That it is for my own good.
I am not sure what you have to base your arguements on but I have provided objective support for my view.

If you have decided to adhere to the picture of a punishing vengeful God, then there is nothing more I say to you.
Even God's punishment is an act of great MERCY because it trains us in righteousness, and keeps us from sin, so that we do not fall short of heaven. What a loving God indeed!!! I refer everyone back to the pictures that Luberti pasted in this thread.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: PeterTheAleut on February 18, 2009, 02:13:53 PM
I'm not concerned with St. Antony's quote. I am concerned with the scriptures clearly and plainly states. I am still waiting for you to address that matter.

I have addressed it. Alex has addressed it also. If you do not accept it--so be it. St Antony the great explains it perfectly--much better than I ever could.
I just read your quote from St. Anthony.  It essentially says that God does not become angry as we understand the concept of anger, but it says nothing about the Divine punishment of which Papist is speaking.  You're attaching punishment to anger in a way that I don't see Papist doing, as if one who punishes does so because he MUST be angry.  The Bible does speak very clearly of Divine punishment, which Papist is correct to argue, but does the biblical statement that God punishes sinners automatically mean that he becomes angry in the human way that we know, the way St. Anthony says we should not attribute to God?
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Mickey on February 18, 2009, 02:14:08 PM
You have just said that you don't believe God punishes us over and over again. That is not addressing my point nor the evidence that I have provided.

The final word belongs to St John, the Beloved Disciple, who knew Christ perhaps better than any of the other apostles. Before the fearful day of judgment, he declares, “we may have confidence,” not in our merits nor in punishing penances we may have endured, but in the love of the God whose very essence is Love. “There is no fear in love, but perfect love casts out fear; for fear has to do with punishment….” The Way into the Kingdom of Heaven is not through punishment, through suffering imposed by a wrathful God whose justice outweighs His mercy. It is through love: the boundless, self-giving love God has for us, to which, in an attitude of ongoing repentance, we respond with love for Him and for one another (1 John 4:16-21).
http://www.oca.org/CHRIST-life-article.asp?SID=6&ID=111&MONTH=July&YEAR=2006



Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Mickey on February 18, 2009, 02:17:59 PM
In Orthodox thought God did not threaten Adam and Eve with punishment nor was He angered or offended by their sin; He was moved to compassion.[3] The expulsion from the Garden and from the Tree of Life was an act of love and not vengeance so that humanity would not “become immortal in sin” (Romanides, 2002, p. 32). Thus began the preparation for the Incarnation of the Son of God and the solution that alone could rectify the situation: the destruction of the enemies of humanity and God, death (I Corinthians 15:26, 56), sin, corruption and the devil (Romanides, 2002).     

http://www.stmaryorthodoxchurch.org/orthodoxy/articles/2004-hughes-sin.php


Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Mickey on February 18, 2009, 02:21:36 PM
The Roman idea of justice found prominence in Augustinian and later Western theology. The idea that Adam and Eve offended God’s infinite justice and honor made of death God’s method of retribution (Romanides, 2002). But this idea of justice deviates from Biblical thought. Kalomiris (1980) explains the meaning of justice in the original Greek of the New Testament:

The Greek word diakosuni ‘justice’, is a translation of the Hebrew word tsedaka. The word means ‘the divine energy which accomplishes man’s salvation.’ It is parallel and almost synonymous with the word hesed which means ‘mercy’, ‘compassion’, ‘love’, and to the word emeth which means ‘fidelity’, ‘truth’. This is entirely different from the juridical understanding of ‘justice’. (p. 31)
The juridical view of justice generates two problems for Augustine. One: how can one say that the attitude of the immutable God’s toward His creation changes from love to wrath? Two: how can God, who is good, be the author of such an evil as death (Romanides, 1992)? The only way to answer this is to say, as Augustine did to the young Bishop, Julian of Eclanum (d. 454), that God’s justice is inscrutable (Cahill, 1995, p. 65). Logically, then, justice provides proof of inherited guilt for Augustine, because since all humanity suffers the punishment of death and since God who is just cannot punish the innocent, then all must be guilty in Adam. Also, by similar reasoning, justice appears as a standard to which even God must adhere (Kalomiris, 1980). Can God change or be subject to any kind of standard or necessity? By contrast the Orthodox father, Basil the Great, attributes the change in attitude to humanity rather than to God (Migne, 1857-1866b). Because of the theological foundation laid by Augustine and taken up by his heirs, the conclusion seems unavoidable that a significant change occurs in the West making the wrath of God and not death the problem facing humanity (Romanides, 1992, p. 155-156)
http://www.stmaryorthodoxchurch.org/orthodoxy/articles/2004-hughes-sin.php

Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: ignatius on February 18, 2009, 02:23:35 PM

I think you may have this backward. I am merely supporiting the clear and plain meaning of scripture. To do otherwise would be to twist it. Thus, I have twisted nothing but, rather, adhere to the scriptural teaching that God
1. Punishes us.
2. Its painful/not fun.[
3. That it is for my own good.
I am not sure what you have to base your arguements on but I have provided objective support for my view.

I don't think arguing whither God 'actively' Punishes, as you have stated, or that man without God suffers, as Mickey has stated, is the point of the matter. The fact is regardless if God Himself is the first or second cause, He wills either to be so or it would not be. This is ultimately a discussion of Justice (giving one his due) not how Justice is ultimately meted out.

As I've argued in my own posts I don't see this as simply as 'are we Justified or not'. I would argue that Christ's work on the Cross is more than debt relief. It is cure. If we are not cured what is our ultimate end? If we are unprofitable with what God has given us then what will happen? If we take the gifts of grace freely given and bury it, and remain unfruitful on that Last Day. What then?

Is there a Purgation for these souls? This is what I ponder and I am not satisfied simply reveling in my arguments of how efficacious our Sacraments are and whatnot. I want to be fruitful and I am not.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: PeterTheAleut on February 18, 2009, 02:25:36 PM
The expulsion from the Garden and from the Tree of Life was an act of love and not vengeance so that humanity would not “become immortal in sin” (Romanides, 2002, p. 32).
Which is exactly what Papist is saying.  The expulsion from the Garden can be seen legitimately as a Divine punishment, yet we can see this punishment as borne out of a loving desire to correct us and not out of any desire for vengeance, as Papist has explained.  (I don't see Papist making a connection between punishment on the one side and the concepts of wrath and vengeance on the other, as you have done.)
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: lubeltri on February 18, 2009, 02:26:18 PM

God does not inflict pain and wrath on us out of vengence and anger. God is not subject to the passions.

Do you even need to say this? Of course we agree with this. By using this as a retort, it makes it seem as if you think this is what we believe.

Of course, the fact that God is not subject to purely human anger and vengeance does not rule out pain or punishment.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Mickey on February 18, 2009, 02:28:15 PM

Do you even need to say this? Of course we agree with this. By using this as a retort, it makes it seem as if you think this is what we believe.

Of course, the fact that God is not subject to purely human anger and vengeance does not rule out pain or punishment.

This is the first time I have heard this from the RC side. So then, what is the pain and punsihment of which you speak?
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: lubeltri on February 18, 2009, 02:31:38 PM

Oh yes, let's use violence to teach our children how to be good. Your words are sick, Papist.

Hmm, is the Holy Spirit also sick?

He that spareth the rod hateth his son: but he that loveth him correcteth him betimes.
Proverbs 13:24

Of course, it goes without saying that it is wrong to inflict serious injury or to perform the discipline out of anger instead of cool, loving correction.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: lubeltri on February 18, 2009, 02:36:09 PM
Luberti this is a great reference. Can you point me to the source? I have often heard that during this time period the Eastern Orthodox Church was much more similar to the Catholic Church.

Sorry about that. I forgot to include the link in my last post. If I were not on Moderated status, I would have gone right back and edited the post to add the links:

http://catholicity.elcore.net/ConfessionOfDositheus.html

http://www.ccel.org/ccel/schaff/creeds2.vi.ii.html
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Mickey on February 18, 2009, 02:40:35 PM
More proof that you don't believe in the scriptures. "Spare the rod spoil the child" I think its sick that you don't take the initiative to provide real discipline for your children.

That is not from Scripture. It from a 1664 poem by Samuel Butler.

Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: ignatius on February 18, 2009, 02:55:48 PM
Honestly I think that modern Orthodox apologists conflate God's Providence and God's Punishment. If we defined God's Providence it would equate very well with Orthodox sensibilities here. No one thinks that all God desires is to punish us. God clearly desires "all to be saved". Unfortunately we don't all seem to want to be saved. Adam and Eve were 'expelled' from Paradise and an Angel place to keep us out. Throughout the Sacred Texts these very 'overt' actions are committed by God and the Bodiless Hosts for a reason. How we ultimately wrap this up to rationalize for ourselves and our own sensibilities is ultimately the work of men and not God.

Modern Orthodoxy, and perhaps a case can be made for Greek Philosophers, that great pains were taken to interpret the Revelation which we have been given in a light that does the least violence to such high minded sensibilities. I think we should be careful though that we don't use this to create our own eisegesis which I fear at times Orthodoxy does. I believe the west has been truer to the exegesis of the Sacred Text without this layer of philosophy used as a lens for reinterpretation. Attempting not to be overly critical on this point I think we need to be careful in using such things.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Innocent on February 18, 2009, 02:58:53 PM
More proof that you don't believe in the scriptures. "Spare the rod spoil the child" I think its sick that you don't take the initiative to provide real discipline for your children.

That is not from Scripture. It from a 1664 poem by Samuel Butler.


But the poem is inspired by two Bible verses if I'm not mistaken.

Proverbs 13:24: He who spareth the rod hateth his son: but he that loveth him correcteth him betimes

Proverbs 23:13-14: Withhold not correction from a child: for if thou strike him with the rod, he shall not die. Thou shalt beat him with the rod, and deliver his soul from hell.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: lubeltri on February 18, 2009, 03:02:24 PM

I add this to lubeltri: as you maybe don't know because of your Catholicity, not all Councils of Orthodoxy are considered binding. The so-called Panorthodox Synod of Jerusalem (sometimes called of Bethlehem) was indeed never applied. Many proofs can be shown of this. For example we don't use the word transubstantiation for the Eucharistic mystery, yet this council used it. The doctrine you can see exposed there, as you can see, doesn't use words such as purgatory, of course. And as far as I know, only two councils held after Nicea II are considered binding (and sometimes - by some groups, I mean) even Ecumenical: the 4th and 5th Ecumenical Councils held in Constantinople.

I think that the true distance between our theologies is due to how you don't understand a need for SYNERGY. Saying that God punishes actively the sinners by a decision as a judge is wrong... But saying - as Ebor showed with Lewis' words - that it's the soul that asks for punishment, this is another question.

Yet, I don't think that imposing Purgatory as a dogma you MUST believe otherwise you'll be heretic, when even the Church fathers never found agreement on this topic, is just a way to divide rather then unite. Do you want REAL unity with us? Renounce you dogmas, and if you want keep them as a personal opinion.

Alex, I know that the Synod of Jerusalem is not seen as an infallible council by all Orthodox. I was just putting forth that many Orthodox, including in a council as important as the Synod of Jerusalem, speak in these terms.

In other words, it is not anathema to the Orthodox faith to believe this way.

-

As for your other statement, I myself tend towards Lewis's view (like you). I always liked this Lewis quote:

There are only two kinds of people in the end: those who say to God, 'Thy will be done,' and those to whom God says, in the end, 'Thy will be done.'

However, I don't think this rules out "punishment" from God---there is too much reference in Scripture and Tradition to this to rule it out. Punishment itself, the Catechism says, does not suppose an angry or vengeful God but comes from the nature of attachment to sin.

-

As for the dogma of Purgatory, that which Catholics must believe is not a great deal---Catholics are not required to believe it is a physical place, or that it involves literal fire. We must believe that a state of purification exists and that prayers, alms, etc. by those on Earth can have an efficacious effect on those undergoing this purification (implying that the process involves pain).

It was open-ended enough for most of the Orthodox prelates at the Council of Florence to accept it.


Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: PeterTheAleut on February 18, 2009, 03:03:53 PM
More proof that you don't believe in the scriptures. "Spare the rod spoil the child" I think its sick that you don't take the initiative to provide real discipline for your children.

That is not from Scripture. It from a 1664 poem by Samuel Butler.


"Folly is bound up in the heart of a child,
     but the rod of discipline drives it far from him."
Proverbs 22:15

"Do not withhold discipline from a child;
     if you beat him with a rod, he will not die.
If you beat him with the rod
     you will save his life from Sheol."
Proverbs 23:13-14

"The rod and reproof give wisdom,
     but a child left to himself brings shame to his mother."
Proverbs 29:15

Maybe the exact phrase, "Spare the rod, spoil the child", is not in the Scriptures, but it certainly appears to be based on Scripture.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Mickey on February 18, 2009, 03:31:48 PM
Maybe the exact phrase, "Spare the rod, spoil the child", is not in the Scriptures, but it certainly appears to be based on Scripture.

That is what I said, Mr moderator. And the proverbs are not telling us to beat our children.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Mickey on February 18, 2009, 03:33:58 PM


But the poem is inspired by two Bible verses if I'm not mistaken.

Proverbs 13:24: He who spareth the rod hateth his son: but he that loveth him correcteth him betimes

Proverbs 23:13-14: Withhold not correction from a child: for if thou strike him with the rod, he shall not die. Thou shalt beat him with the rod, and deliver his soul from hell.

The exact wording is from a poem. The proverbs are not telling us to beat our children.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Mickey on February 18, 2009, 03:37:44 PM
I believe the west has been truer to the exegesis of the Sacred Text without this layer of philosophy used as a lens for reinterpretation. Attempting not to be overly critical on this point I think we need to be careful in using such things.

I believe the Latins, in their scholasticism and attachment to medieval mind sets---have been less true to the exegesis of the Sacred Text.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Innocent on February 18, 2009, 03:40:44 PM


But the poem is inspired by two Bible verses if I'm not mistaken.

Proverbs 13:24: He who spareth the rod hateth his son: but he that loveth him correcteth him betimes

Proverbs 23:13-14: Withhold not correction from a child: for if thou strike him with the rod, he shall not die. Thou shalt beat him with the rod, and deliver his soul from hell.

The exact wording is from a poem. The proverbs are not telling us to beat our children.

Who said beat the child? Spanking and beating are not the same. So what your saying in the proverbs give no indication that spanking may be necessary to disaplin a child? Do you think what we are getting is Mickey's personnel views on what the proverbs mean?

In anycase we should move the spanking debate over to the other thread. I don't want to derail this anymore.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Mickey on February 18, 2009, 03:45:08 PM
Spanking and beating are not the same.

Mama mia! What are you talking about?!?

The rod is used by the shepherd to guide the sheep.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: ignatius on February 18, 2009, 03:47:01 PM
I believe the west has been truer to the exegesis of the Sacred Text without this layer of philosophy used as a lens for reinterpretation. Attempting not to be overly critical on this point I think we need to be careful in using such things.

I believe the Latins, in their scholasticism and attachment to medieval mind sets---have been less true to the exegesis of the Sacred Text.

Would you say that the Sacred Texts has an attachment to a Semitic Mindset and thus is in need of Greek Philosophic Lens to interpret it? Is there value it recognizing when the Sacred Text speaks plainly of wrath and punishment that maybe we shouldn't ignore it and explain it away? Is there any value in the normative interpretation of the Scriptures?
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Innocent on February 18, 2009, 03:55:00 PM
Spanking and beating are not the same.

Mama mia! What are you talking about?!?

The rod is used by the shepherd to guide the sheep.

Are you for real?
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Mickey on February 18, 2009, 03:55:40 PM
Would you say that the Sacred Texts has an attachment to a Semitic Mindset and thus is in need of Greek Philosophic Lens to interpret it? Is there value it recognizing when the Sacred Text speaks plainly of wrath and punishment that maybe we shouldn't ignore it and explain it away? Is there any value in the normative interpretation of the Scriptures?

All good questions Chris. I do not read the God of Scriptures as a wrathful and punishing God. I see only love and mercy. That is all I will ever see. I know that we suffer in this life but I am not convinced that we suffer in a middle state after repose.

I am weary of this thread. I have not been Orthodox very long and so I may be completely wrong. Who knows? I am the only Orthodox poster here defending what I feel to be the Orthodox postion of a God Who is all love and mercy against the medieval view of wrath and punsihment. Alex has taken a position similar to mine, but ironically I think he is still theoretically Latin Catholic. Otherwise, no other Orthodox posters are chiming in on this, so I may very well be completely wrong.

It is time for me to stop my participation on this thread.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Mickey on February 18, 2009, 03:56:12 PM
[Are you for real?

Funny. I was thinking the same of you.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Innocent on February 18, 2009, 03:59:35 PM
[Are you for real?

Funny. I was thinking the same of you.

Thats a big surprise!  ::)
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: ignatius on February 18, 2009, 04:02:22 PM
Would you say that the Sacred Texts has an attachment to a Semitic Mindset and thus is in need of Greek Philosophic Lens to interpret it? Is there value it recognizing when the Sacred Text speaks plainly of wrath and punishment that maybe we shouldn't ignore it and explain it away? Is there any value in the normative interpretation of the Scriptures?

All good questions Chris. I do not read the God of Scriptures as a wrathful and punishing God. I see only love and mercy. That is all I will ever see. I know that we suffer in this life but I am not convinced that we suffer in a middle state after repose.

I understand your points. Thanks for your contributions. I have appreciated them.

Quote
I am weary of this thread. I have not been Orthodox very long and so I may be completely wrong. Who knows? I am the only Orthodox poster here defending what I feel to be the Orthodox postion of a God Who is all love and mercy against the medieval view of wrath and punsihment. Alex has taken a position similar to mine, but ironically I think he is still theoretically Latin Catholic. Otherwise, no other Orthodox posters are chiming in on this, so I may very well be completely wrong.

I don't believe it must be this OR that but maybe this AND that. Rivers of Fire is an interesting philosophical interpretation of this dilemma.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Mickey on February 18, 2009, 04:03:24 PM
Thats a big surprise! 

Not really.  ;D


The true father loves and disciplines his child as God loves and disciplines His people. (cf. Hebrews 12:3-11)
He who spares the rod hates his son, but he who loves him is diligent to discipline him.

Folly is bound up in the heart of a child, but the rod of discipline drives it far from him.

Train up a child in the way he should go, and when he is old he will not depart from it. (Proverbs 13:24; 22:6,15; 23:13)
The love of the father for children is expressed in loving discipline without hypocrisy. The best teacher is one's own example.
Fathers, do not provoke your children to anger but bring them up with discipline and instruction in the Lord. (Ephesians 6:4)

Fathers, do not provoke your children, lest they become discouraged. (Colossians 3:21)
http://www.oca.org/OCchapter.asp?SID=2&ID=203
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Innocent on February 18, 2009, 04:12:09 PM
My answer was sarcastic and it should not have been. Sorry about that!
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Mickey on February 18, 2009, 04:15:10 PM
My answer was sarcastic and it should not have been. Sorry about that!

Likewise. God bless you.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Papist on February 18, 2009, 04:29:53 PM
More proof that you don't believe in the scriptures. "Spare the rod spoil the child" I think its sick that you don't take the initiative to provide real discipline for your children.

That is not from Scripture. It from a 1664 poem by Samuel Butler.


It a paraphrase of the scripture that Luberti provided above. Look at his post above. He has the exact reference from proverbs.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Papist on February 18, 2009, 04:33:18 PM
Would you say that the Sacred Texts has an attachment to a Semitic Mindset and thus is in need of Greek Philosophic Lens to interpret it? Is there value it recognizing when the Sacred Text speaks plainly of wrath and punishment that maybe we shouldn't ignore it and explain it away? Is there any value in the normative interpretation of the Scriptures?

All good questions Chris. I do not read the God of Scriptures as a wrathful and punishing God. I see only love and mercy. That is all I will ever see. I know that we suffer in this life but I am not convinced that we suffer in a middle state after repose.

I am weary of this thread. I have not been Orthodox very long and so I may be completely wrong. Who knows? I am the only Orthodox poster here defending what I feel to be the Orthodox postion of a God Who is all love and mercy against the medieval view of wrath and punsihment. Alex has taken a position similar to mine, but ironically I think he is still theoretically Latin Catholic. Otherwise, no other Orthodox posters are chiming in on this, so I may very well be completely wrong.

It is time for me to stop my participation on this thread.
And here in lies the problem. I don't think you re defending the Orthodox view. I respect the Orthodox Church enough to know that they would not deny what the scriptures plainly teach and, furthermore, would not deny that, as well as being merciful, God is just. So much so that he provides us with the mercy of temporal punishment in this life so that we avoid evil and seek holiness which means eternal life.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Mickey on February 18, 2009, 04:36:14 PM
It a paraphrase of the scripture that Luberti provided above.

It is from a poem.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: stanley123 on February 18, 2009, 04:38:05 PM
Hi to all!
First of all, I resume this topic in stating with no sort of doubt that there's no such thing as venial or mortal sins in Orthodoxy. Every sin is the same by nature: a corruption of the perfect image of God we received in Adam before the fall. Every illness injures our soul in a stronger or less strong way, but God hates "all" sin. God doesn't hate sinners... he hates sin because sin is the cause of our personal separation from Him.
Wait a minute.  You say that there is no such thing as mortal sin or venial sin. But in the next breath you say that every illness injures our soul in a stronger or lesser way?
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Mickey on February 18, 2009, 04:39:03 PM
So much so that he provides us with the mercy of temporal punishment in this life so that we avoid evil and seek holiness which means eternal life.

I never denied suffering in this life. I just do not believe we are punished in purgatory.  And I do not believe Scripture tells us such a thing. So from my perspective, it is you who have it wrong. But again, I am wide open to correction.

It would be great if an Orthodox priest chimed in here.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Mickey on February 18, 2009, 04:59:24 PM
I don't think you re defending the Orthodox view.

As far as I know, the Orthodox Church does not accept the Roman Catholic doctrine of purgatory.

And with that post, I bid you all farewell. I have spent too much of my time on forums and I am leaving them behind. I have much to learn so I am going to immerse myself in prayer and study for a very long time. Lent is almost two weeks away (Julian calendar) and it is time to pray.

God bless everyone. And to all I have offended, I beg your forgiveness.

The most wretched of all sinners,
Mickey
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Papist on February 18, 2009, 05:48:00 PM
So much so that he provides us with the mercy of temporal punishment in this life so that we avoid evil and seek holiness which means eternal life.

I never denied suffering in this life. I just do not believe we are punished in purgatory.  And I do not believe Scripture tells us such a thing. So from my perspective, it is you who have it wrong. But again, I am wide open to correction.

It would be great if an Orthodox priest chimed in here.
I have not made a single point about purgatory on this thread. I am just addressing the fact that you do not recognize that God punishes.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Papist on February 18, 2009, 05:52:38 PM
I don't think you re defending the Orthodox view.

As far as I know, the Orthodox Church does not accept the Roman Catholic doctrine of purgatory.

And with that post, I bid you all farewell. I have spent too much of my time on forums and I am leaving them behind. I have much to learn so I am going to immerse myself in prayer and study for a very long time. Lent is almost two weeks away (Julian calendar) and it is time to pray.

God bless everyone. And to all I have offended, I beg your forgiveness.

The most wretched of all sinners,
Mickey
I never said that they do support purgatory. But I would be shocked to find out that Eastern Orthodox Christians do not believe that God punishes us for our own good as the scriptures teach.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: ozgeorge on February 18, 2009, 06:13:49 PM
Mickey,
God chastises us to correct us.
"As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten: be zealous therefore, and repent." (Revelations 3:19)

This is not to pay a debt for sin, but it is a medicine to correct and heal us.
Regards,
George



Papist,
God chastises us to correct us.
"As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten: be zealous therefore, and repent." (Revelations 3:19)

This is not to pay a debt for sin, but it is a medicine to correct and heal us.
Regards,
George
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: ignatius on February 18, 2009, 06:50:47 PM
Mickey,
God chastises us to correct us.
"As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten: be zealous therefore, and repent." (Revelations 3:19)

This is not to pay a debt for sin, but it is a medicine to correct and heal us.
Regards,
George



Papist,
God chastises us to correct us.
"As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten: be zealous therefore, and repent." (Revelations 3:19)

This is not to pay a debt for sin, but it is a medicine to correct and heal us.
Regards,
George

Wisdom, nuff said.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Papist on February 19, 2009, 12:10:52 AM
Mickey,
God chastises us to correct us.
"As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten: be zealous therefore, and repent." (Revelations 3:19)

This is not to pay a debt for sin, but it is a medicine to correct and heal us.
Regards,
George



Papist,
God chastises us to correct us.
"As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten: be zealous therefore, and repent." (Revelations 3:19)

This is not to pay a debt for sin, but it is a medicine to correct and heal us.
Regards,
George
I agree that God punishes us to correct us. That is what I have been arguing throughout this thread.
However, I don't think that he only punishes us for correction. Sometimes it is for justice. I think the death of the liars in Act chapter five is evidence of this.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: AlexanderOfBergamo on February 19, 2009, 09:54:52 AM
Wow... sorry I came so late back to this thread. It's 14:36 in Italy and I've been at university, so finally I can tell again and again what I believe and confess. I'll be as sinthetic as possible... and also try to be clear.

1) I do believe that some "purification after death" occurs. Many Church fathers did, yet many others didn't. Believing in purgatory is thus unnecessary for salvation, once you still pray for the dead...

2) I believe that God allows suffering to correct us. In this life of course, but not in the life to come. I believe that in the afterlife the only chastisement is the eternal chastisement of Hell. I prefer to consider purification after death as a process of growth. Since no scriptural or patristic text prooves that the large majority of the Church fathers associated purgatory with a punishment to satisfy God's justice, then I think I'm not bound to believe it.

3) Dear Mickey, I'm more Orthodox then you can think. I always hated being RC at least since 15-16. Anyway I take no offence for what you said: I understand that I should be calmer, and still hope God help me changing my life. I'll do my best to reach the same calm and wisdom of the holy saints of Orthodoxy, although I'm inclined to lose control. Btw, I'll pray that this Lent might be another occasion for spiritual growth for both of us. We fought with zeal because we both believe the same thing, i.e. that the word punishment is somehow inadequate to reflect the essence of purification after death. I personally prefer "penance", "correction" and "theosis".

4) Quote from stanley123:
Quote
Wait a minute.  You say that there is no such thing as mortal sin or venial sin. But in the next breath you say that every illness injures our soul in a stronger or lesser way?
I say there are many levels, not just two. Not only in purgatory, but even in Hell. The rigid scholastic definition of "mortal sins" and "venial sins" seems to put sometimes a wall between them as if venial sins were so little that we should be justified to do them. "God will still forgive and purge us, after all". No, all sins separate us from God, and even a venial sin, when persistent and unconfessed, could lead us to Hell. I don't see that large difference... Only blasphemy against the Holy Spirit brings us directly to Hell. All other sins could or could not lead us to Hell. That's up to God's decision, anyway. I just find "unbearable" all that categorizing process typical of legalistic Western society, where I've unfortunately born.

In Christ,   Alex

PS: Pray for me, a sinner
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: LBK on February 19, 2009, 10:57:50 AM
An approach which nobody has suggested is this: The consensus patrum of the Orthodox Church is best reflected and expressed in its liturgical traditions and texts. So, for homework, kiddies, please find the texts for the Orthodox requiem (panikhida, mnemosyno, parastasis), and for the Orthodox funeral (for a layman, and, if possible, for a child). Let's see if there's any mention or hint of purgatory or purification within the texts of these services.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: ignatius on February 19, 2009, 11:26:34 AM
An approach which nobody has suggested is this: The consensus patrum of the Orthodox Church is best reflected and expressed in its liturgical traditions and texts. So, for homework, kiddies, please find the texts for the Orthodox requiem (panikhida, mnemosyno, parastasis), and for the Orthodox funeral (for a layman, and, if possible, for a child). Let's see if there's any mention or hint of purgatory or purification within the texts of these services.

I don't have access to these, any links?
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Anastasios on February 19, 2009, 11:33:25 AM
Liturgical texts are of course a great source for doctrine, alongside the decrees of Councils.

Since a reference has been made to an Orthodox Council, namely the Synod of Jerusalem in 1672, I'd be interested in LBK's and others' take on this decree which I will repost:

Quote
DECREE XVIII.

We believe that the souls of those that have fallen asleep are either at rest or in torment, according to what each hath wrought; — for when they are separated from their bodies, they depart immediately either to joy, or to sorrow and lamentation; though confessedly neither their enjoyment, nor condemnation are complete. For after the common resurrection, when the soul shall be united with the body, with which it had behaved <151> itself well or ill, each shall receive the completion of either enjoyment or of condemnation forsooth.

And such as though envolved in mortal sins have not departed in despair, but have, while still living in the body, repented, though without bringing forth any fruits of repentance — by pouring forth tears, forsooth, by kneeling while watching in prayers, by afflicting themselves, by relieving the poor, and in fine {in summation ELC} by shewing forth by their works their love towards God and their neighbour, and which the Catholic Church hath from the beginning rightly called satisfaction — of these and such like the souls depart into Hades, and there endure the punishment due to the sins they have committed. But they are aware of their future release from thence, and are delivered by the Supreme Goodness, through the prayers <152> of the Priests, and the good works which the relatives of each do for their Departed; especially the unbloody Sacrifice availing in the highest degree; which each offereth particularly for his relatives that have fallen asleep, and which the Catholic and Apostolic Church offereth daily for all alike; it being, of course, understood that we know not the time of their release. For that there is deliverance for such from their direful condition, and that before the common resurrection and judgment we know and believe; but when we know not.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: lubeltri on February 19, 2009, 11:40:04 AM

4) Quote from stanley123:
Quote
Wait a minute.  You say that there is no such thing as mortal sin or venial sin. But in the next breath you say that every illness injures our soul in a stronger or lesser way?
I say there are many levels, not just two. Not only in purgatory, but even in Hell. The rigid scholastic definition of "mortal sins" and "venial sins" seems to put sometimes a wall between them as if venial sins were so little that we should be justified to do them. "God will still forgive and purge us, after all". No, all sins separate us from God, and even a venial sin, when persistent and unconfessed, could lead us to Hell. I don't see that large difference... Only blasphemy against the Holy Spirit brings us directly to Hell. All other sins could or could not lead us to Hell. That's up to God's decision, anyway. I just find "unbearable" all that categorizing process typical of legalistic Western society, where I've unfortunately born.

You still clearly show a misunderstanding of mortal and venial sin. No one is justified to do any sin, even venial---God hates all sin. Venial sins "persistent and unconfessed," as you say, DO end up killing the soul. When I go to confession, I confess all sins of which I am aware.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Irish Hermit on February 19, 2009, 11:51:36 AM
Three quotes from widely differing centuries (5th, 17th and 20th) which show the same unanimous teaching on life immediately after death...

Orthodox teaching on this point (pax to Fr Seraphim Rose) is characterised by a reticence to go beyond the little which the Saviour has been pleased to reveal to us.

But the human mind which always hates to admit its limitations is very ingenious in creating afterlife scenarios, and in this respect our Roman Catholic brothers are the most ingenious of all.   :)
 
Quote 1:   The teaching of Saint Augustine of Hippo:
 
 
"During the time, moreover, which intervenes between a man's death
 and the final resurrection, the soul dwells in a hidden retreat, where it enjoys rest
or suffers affliction just in proportion to the merit it has earned by the life which it led on earth."  
Augustine, Enchiridion, 1099 (A.D. 421).

 
Quote 2:  The 1980 Resolution of the ROCA Synod of bishops on the toll house belief... which is virtually word for word what Augustine wrote 1,500 years earlier!

"Taking all of the foregoing into consideration, the Synod of Bishops resolve:

In the deliberations on life after death one must in general keep in mind
that it has not pleased the Lord to reveal to us very much aside from the
fact that the degree of a soul's blessedness depends on how much a man's life
on the earth has been truly Christian, and the degree of a man's posthumous
suffering depends upon the degree of sinfulness. To add conjectures to the little
that the Lord has been pleased to reveal to us is not beneficial to our salvation..."
 
 
 
Quote 3:    The Synod of Constantinople of 1672:
 
"We believe that the souls of the departed are in either
repose or torment as each one has wrought, for immediately after the
separation from the body they are pronounced either in bliss or in suffering
and sorrows, yet we confess that neither their joy nor their condemnation
are yet complete. After the general resurrection, when the soul is reunited
with the body, each one will receive the full measure of joy or condemnation
due to him for the way in which he conducted himself, whether well or ill."

Fr Ambrose
 
-oOo-
 
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Anastasios on February 19, 2009, 11:59:56 AM
Yes, Fr Ambrose, but what about the very next line of the Synod of 1672 which talks about purification?
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: ignatius on February 19, 2009, 12:00:33 PM
Three quotes from widely differing centuries (5th, 17th and 20th) which show the same unanimous teaching on life immediately after death...

Orthodox teaching on this point (pax to Fr Seraphim Rose) is characterised by a reticence to go beyond the little which the Saviour has been pleased to reveal to us.

But the human mind which always hates to admit its limitations is very ingenious in creating afterlife scenarios, and in this respect our Roman Catholic brothers are the most ingenious of all.   :)
 
Quote 1:   The teaching of Saint Augustine of Hippo:
 
 
"During the time, moreover, which intervenes between a man's death
 and the final resurrection, the soul dwells in a hidden retreat, where it enjoys rest
or suffers affliction just in proportion to the merit it has earned by the life which it led on earth."  
Augustine, Enchiridion, 1099 (A.D. 421).

 
Quote 2:  The 1980 Resolution of the ROCA Synod of bishops on the toll house belief... which is virtually word for word what Augustine wrote 1,500 years earlier!

"Taking all of the foregoing into consideration, the Synod of Bishops resolve:

In the deliberations on life after death one must in general keep in mind
that it has not pleased the Lord to reveal to us very much aside from the
fact that the degree of a soul's blessedness depends on how much a man's life
on the earth has been truly Christian, and the degree of a man's posthumous
suffering depends upon the degree of sinfulness. To add conjectures to the little
that the Lord has been pleased to reveal to us is not beneficial to our salvation..."
 
 
 
Quote 3:    The Synod of Constantinople of 1672:
 
"We believe that the souls of the departed are in either
repose or torment as each one has wrought, for immediately after the
separation from the body they are pronounced either in bliss or in suffering
and sorrows, yet we confess that neither their joy nor their condemnation
are yet complete. After the general resurrection, when the soul is reunited
with the body, each one will receive the full measure of joy or condemnation
due to him for the way in which he conducted himself, whether well or ill."

Fr Ambrose
 
-oOo-
 

Father Bless,

So we can have no hope of release from these torments? For me that is all that Purgatory is 'the hope of release'...
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Papist on February 19, 2009, 12:02:19 PM
Three quotes from widely differing centuries (5th, 17th and 20th) which show the same unanimous teaching on life immediately after death...

Orthodox teaching on this point (pax to Fr Seraphim Rose) is characterised by a reticence to go beyond the little which the Saviour has been pleased to reveal to us.

But the human mind which always hates to admit its limitations is very ingenious in creating afterlife scenarios, and in this respect our Roman Catholic brothers are the most ingenious of all.   :)
 
Quote 1:   The teaching of Saint Augustine of Hippo:
 
 
"During the time, moreover, which intervenes between a man's death
 and the final resurrection, the soul dwells in a hidden retreat, where it enjoys rest
or suffers affliction just in proportion to the merit it has earned by the life which it led on earth."  
Augustine, Enchiridion, 1099 (A.D. 421).

 
Quote 2:  The 1980 Resolution of the ROCA Synod of bishops on the toll house belief... which is virtually word for word what Augustine wrote 1,500 years earlier!

"Taking all of the foregoing into consideration, the Synod of Bishops resolve:

In the deliberations on life after death one must in general keep in mind
that it has not pleased the Lord to reveal to us very much aside from the
fact that the degree of a soul's blessedness depends on how much a man's life
on the earth has been truly Christian, and the degree of a man's posthumous
suffering depends upon the degree of sinfulness. To add conjectures to the little
that the Lord has been pleased to reveal to us is not beneficial to our salvation..."
 
 
 
Quote 3:    The Synod of Constantinople of 1672:
 
"We believe that the souls of the departed are in either
repose or torment as each one has wrought, for immediately after the
separation from the body they are pronounced either in bliss or in suffering
and sorrows, yet we confess that neither their joy nor their condemnation
are yet complete. After the general resurrection, when the soul is reunited
with the body, each one will receive the full measure of joy or condemnation
due to him for the way in which he conducted himself, whether well or ill."

Fr Ambrose
 
-oOo-
 
Father, What do you think about the passage from the synod of Jerusalem?
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Papist on February 19, 2009, 12:18:59 PM
I read this quote online. Did Mark of Ephesus really say this?
"But if souls have departed this life in faith and love, while nevertheless carrying away with themselves certain faults, whether small ones [what Catholics call "venial sins"] over which they have not repented at all, or greater ones for which - even though they have repented over them - they did not undertake to show fruits of repentance: such souls, we believe, must be cleansed from this kind of sins but not by means of some purgatorial fire or a definite punishment in some place."

-Mark of Ephesus' "First Homily Concerning Purgatorial Fire" quoted in Fr. Seraphim Rose's The Soul After Death (California: St. Herman of Alaska Brotherhood; 1994).
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: lubeltri on February 19, 2009, 02:40:40 PM
I read this quote online. Did Mark of Ephesus really say this?
"But if souls have departed this life in faith and love, while nevertheless carrying away with themselves certain faults, whether small ones [what Catholics call "venial sins"] over which they have not repented at all, or greater ones for which - even though they have repented over them - they did not undertake to show fruits of repentance: such souls, we believe, must be cleansed from this kind of sins but not by means of some purgatorial fire or a definite punishment in some place."

-Mark of Ephesus' "First Homily Concerning Purgatorial Fire" quoted in Fr. Seraphim Rose's The Soul After Death (California: St. Herman of Alaska Brotherhood; 1994).


I remember coming across this quote before:

When union between the Catholic and Eastern Orthodox Churches was attempted at the Council of Florence, the subject of purgatory was a hot topic.[5] In the end, all but one of the Eastern Orthodox representatives (Eastern Orthodox St. Mark of Ephesus) agreed to the Council's formulas.[6] What is significant is that Mark of Ephesus' belief in cleansing (the meaning of "purgation") after death, and most if not all of his speculations on what form it could take, are acceptable to Catholicism.[7] From a Catholic perspective, Mark's "dissent" was entirely semantic. Compare these two formulas:

    But if souls have departed this life in faith and love, while nevertheless carrying away with themselves certain faults, whether small ones [what Catholics call "venial sins"] over which they have not repented at all, or greater ones for which - even though they have repented over them - they did not undertake to show fruits of repentance: such souls, we believe, must be cleansed from this kind of sins but not by means of some purgatorial fire or a definite punishment in some place.[8]

    The souls of those who depart this life with true repentance and in the love of God, before they have rendered satisfaction for their trespasses and negligences by worthy fruits of repentance, are cleansed after death by cleansing pains.[9]

There are only two apparent differences between these two statements. The first is that Mark of Ephesus was opposed to the term "fire" and the idea that cleansing occurs "in some place," neither of which is defined by the Council of Florence (or any other Ecumenical Council) as part of Catholic teaching on purgatory.[10] The second is that the Council mentions "pain" or "suffering." But Mark of Ephesus also believed that cleansing after death involves pain or suffering. He actually called his own theories "more torment than any fire...terror....that is much more tormenting and punishing than anything else."[11] In other words, both the Council and Mark of Ephesus agreed that there is a cleansing after death, the conditions of which may be understood as suffering.[12]

This is all very interesting stuff if true. The author of this article provides citations to Fr. Seraphim Rose's The Soul After Death. I should like to consult it to verify.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Papist on February 19, 2009, 03:07:06 PM
I read this quote online. Did Mark of Ephesus really say this?
"But if souls have departed this life in faith and love, while nevertheless carrying away with themselves certain faults, whether small ones [what Catholics call "venial sins"] over which they have not repented at all, or greater ones for which - even though they have repented over them - they did not undertake to show fruits of repentance: such souls, we believe, must be cleansed from this kind of sins but not by means of some purgatorial fire or a definite punishment in some place."

-Mark of Ephesus' "First Homily Concerning Purgatorial Fire" quoted in Fr. Seraphim Rose's The Soul After Death (California: St. Herman of Alaska Brotherhood; 1994).


I remember coming across this quote before:

When union between the Catholic and Eastern Orthodox Churches was attempted at the Council of Florence, the subject of purgatory was a hot topic.[5] In the end, all but one of the Eastern Orthodox representatives (Eastern Orthodox St. Mark of Ephesus) agreed to the Council's formulas.[6] What is significant is that Mark of Ephesus' belief in cleansing (the meaning of "purgation") after death, and most if not all of his speculations on what form it could take, are acceptable to Catholicism.[7] From a Catholic perspective, Mark's "dissent" was entirely semantic. Compare these two formulas:

    But if souls have departed this life in faith and love, while nevertheless carrying away with themselves certain faults, whether small ones [what Catholics call "venial sins"] over which they have not repented at all, or greater ones for which - even though they have repented over them - they did not undertake to show fruits of repentance: such souls, we believe, must be cleansed from this kind of sins but not by means of some purgatorial fire or a definite punishment in some place.[8]

    The souls of those who depart this life with true repentance and in the love of God, before they have rendered satisfaction for their trespasses and negligences by worthy fruits of repentance, are cleansed after death by cleansing pains.[9]

There are only two apparent differences between these two statements. The first is that Mark of Ephesus was opposed to the term "fire" and the idea that cleansing occurs "in some place," neither of which is defined by the Council of Florence (or any other Ecumenical Council) as part of Catholic teaching on purgatory.[10] The second is that the Council mentions "pain" or "suffering." But Mark of Ephesus also believed that cleansing after death involves pain or suffering. He actually called his own theories "more torment than any fire...terror....that is much more tormenting and punishing than anything else."[11] In other words, both the Council and Mark of Ephesus agreed that there is a cleansing after death, the conditions of which may be understood as suffering.[12]

This is all very interesting stuff if true. The author of this article provides citations to Fr. Seraphim Rose's The Soul After Death. I should like to consult it to verify.
Looks like you and I read the same article. That's where I found the quote within a quote within a quote. lol
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: stanley123 on February 19, 2009, 03:44:54 PM
I do believe that some "purification after death" occurs. Many Church fathers did, yet many others didn't. Believing in purgatory is thus unnecessary for salvation, once you still pray for the dead...
Sorry, but I don't see any insurmountable difference between purification after death and the Catholic teaching on purgatory.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Papist on February 19, 2009, 03:47:59 PM
I do believe that some "purification after death" occurs. Many Church fathers did, yet many others didn't. Believing in purgatory is thus unnecessary for salvation, once you still pray for the dead...
Sorry, but I don't see any insurmountable difference between purification after death and the Catholic teaching on purgatory.
That's because there is not an insurmountable difference. When the dogma was defined in the union councils it was made specifically vague enought that it would be compatible with Eastern theology. However, anit-western sentiment has made a mountain out of a mole hill, or rather out of no hill at all.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: stanley123 on February 19, 2009, 04:10:01 PM
I say there are many levels, not just two. Not only in purgatory, but even in Hell. The rigid scholastic definition of "mortal sins" and "venial sins" seems to put sometimes a wall between them as if venial sins were so little that we should be justified to do them. "God will still forgive and purge us, after all". No, all sins separate us from God, and even a venial sin, when persistent and unconfessed, could lead us to Hell. I don't see that large difference... Only blasphemy against the Holy Spirit brings us directly to Hell. All other sins could or could not lead us to Hell. That's up to God's decision, anyway. I just find "unbearable" all that categorizing process typical of legalistic Western society, where I've unfortunately born.
To me, it just makes sense that there are lesser and greater sins. In the Latin tradition, these are simply called venial and mortal sins, or in the more modern usage, they may be  called lesser sins and serious sins.
Now you say here that all sins separate us from God. Let's suppose that you are a fairly religious man, you fast and pray according to your Church discipline, and you are always engaged in helpful family activities. Let's say then that you take the family to a park and as you are walking by, you see a sign which says: DO NOT PICK THE FLOWERS. However, it is a bright sunny day, and there are several flowers blooming, so you pick and steal one flower. Now please tell me if that sin of picking and stealing a flower in a park would completely separate you from God? I don't think it would, although it would be wrong and it would be an offense agaisnt the law of God agaisnt stealing. I don;t think that a person would go to hell for picking one flower among many in a park? Is that not a venial sin, plain and simple?
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Fr. George on February 19, 2009, 04:17:16 PM
To me, it just makes sense that there are lesser and greater sins. In the Latin tradition, these are simply called venial and mortal sins, or in the more modern usage, they may be  called lesser sins and serious sins.
Now you say here that all sins separate us from God. Let's suppose that you are a fairly religious man, you fast and pray according to your Church discipline, and you are always engaged in helpful family activities. Let's say then that you take the family to a park and as you are walking by, you see a sign which says: DO NOT PICK THE FLOWERS. However, it is a bright sunny day, and there are several flowers blooming, so you pick and steal one flower. Now please tell me if that sin of picking and stealing a flower in a park would completely separate you from God? I don't think it would, although it would be wrong and it would be an offense agaisnt the law of God agaisnt stealing. I don;t think that a person would go to hell for picking one flower among many in a park? Is that not a venial sin, plain and simple? 

There's no such thing as a simple sin - you steal the flower, that's one thing; if you don't confess it because you consider it trivial, then that's another (pride!) and more serious one; if you encourage your children to steal because they saw you do it, then that's another (leading others to sin)...  However, unless you think that you can measure the number of inches separating you from God, then yes, anything that separates, separates completely.

The Orthodox approach isn't to say that you're dammed for one and all - but it acknowledges that one sin leads to others which are more serious, which is why we must strive for no sin, and must be repentant for all sin equally.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Papist on February 19, 2009, 04:32:07 PM

The Orthodox approach isn't to say that you're dammed for one and all - but it acknowledges that one sin leads to others which are more serious, which is why we must strive for no sin, and must be repentant for all sin equally.
Which is the same as the Catholic position. Unrepented and unconfessed venial sin can lead to mortal sin by weaking our resistance against sin. Thus we should repent from all sin.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: ignatius on February 19, 2009, 04:36:31 PM
To me, it just makes sense that there are lesser and greater sins. In the Latin tradition, these are simply called venial and mortal sins, or in the more modern usage, they may be  called lesser sins and serious sins.
Now you say here that all sins separate us from God. Let's suppose that you are a fairly religious man, you fast and pray according to your Church discipline, and you are always engaged in helpful family activities. Let's say then that you take the family to a park and as you are walking by, you see a sign which says: DO NOT PICK THE FLOWERS. However, it is a bright sunny day, and there are several flowers blooming, so you pick and steal one flower. Now please tell me if that sin of picking and stealing a flower in a park would completely separate you from God? I don't think it would, although it would be wrong and it would be an offense agaisnt the law of God agaisnt stealing. I don;t think that a person would go to hell for picking one flower among many in a park? Is that not a venial sin, plain and simple? 

There's no such thing as a simple sin - you steal the flower, that's one thing; if you don't confess it because you consider it trivial, then that's another (pride!) and more serious one; if you encourage your children to steal because they saw you do it, then that's another (leading others to sin)...  However, unless you think that you can measure the number of inches separating you from God, then yes, anything that separates, separates completely.

The Orthodox approach isn't to say that you're dammed for one and all - but it acknowledges that one sin leads to others which are more serious, which is why we must strive for no sin, and must be repentant for all sin equally.

Hi Cleveland,

Is it not a hope that even those who have passed on in sin, unrepentant, that they may eventually be united with their loved one's in heaven? I thought that this was a hope of the Orthodox? Am I wrong?
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: stashko on February 19, 2009, 04:39:37 PM
But Doesn't repentance cover all this ..Im sure everyone that goes to confession will mention to the Father of the forgotten sin's he/she can't remember as well.. just to mention this in it self the forgotten sins is a act that The Lord would honor and that your truly are sorry for your sins remembered and unremembered ,in thought deed and word and thats why your in confession ..
Also you accept and trust the Lord and in his Gift to the Church to absolve repented sins known and forgotten...The lord Knows our weekness,, is Quick to Forgive...
Why is it Hard to Believe  By our catholic brothers/sisters...why do you believe that God is out to Get us one way or another ....

Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: ignatius on February 19, 2009, 04:43:20 PM
But Doesn't repentance cover all this ..Im sure everyone that goes to confession will mention to the Father of the forgotten sin's he/she can't remember as well.. just to mention this in it self the forgotten sins is a act that The Lord would honor and that your truly are sorry for your sins remembered and unremembered ,in thought deed and word and thats why your in confession ..
Also you accept and trust the Lord and in his Gift to the Church to absolve repented sins known and forgotten...The lord Knows our weekness,, is Quick to Forgive...
Why is it Hard to Believe  By our catholic brothers/sisters...why do you believe that God is out to Get us one way or another ....

For me personally... I don't really think God is out to get us. I just don't believe that I love God enough to keep His Commandments nor am I particularly fruitful.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: stanley123 on February 19, 2009, 04:44:45 PM
But Doesn't repentance cover all this ..Im sure everyone that goes to confession will mention to the Father of the forgotten sin's he/she can't remember as well.. just to mention this in it self the forgotten sins is a act that The Lord would honor and that your truly are sorry for your sins remembered and unremembered ,in thought deed and word and thats why your in confession ..
Also you accept and trust the Lord and in his Gift to the Church to absolve repented sins known and forgotten...The lord Knows our weekness,, is Quick to Forgive...
Why is it Hard to Believe  By our catholic brothers/sisters...why do you believe that God is out to Get us one way or another ....


Yes, repentance is always best. Of course, I sincerely agree with you on that point.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: ozgeorge on February 19, 2009, 04:46:48 PM
Mickey,
God chastises us to correct us.
"As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten: be zealous therefore, and repent." (Revelations 3:19)

This is not to pay a debt for sin, but it is a medicine to correct and heal us.
Regards,
George



Papist,
God chastises us to correct us.
"As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten: be zealous therefore, and repent." (Revelations 3:19)

This is not to pay a debt for sin, but it is a medicine to correct and heal us.
Regards,
George
I agree that God punishes us to correct us. That is what I have been arguing throughout this thread.
However, I don't think that he only punishes us for correction. Sometimes it is for justice. I think the death of the liars in Act chapter five is evidence of this.
They did not die because they were liars. They died because they lied to the Holy Spirit- and so, cut themselves off from the Life-Giver. They died in horror of the realization of what they had done once the Apostles exposed their deed. And their deaths were God's rebuke and correction not only of them, but the whole Community.
So the sequence is:
1) The Apostles tell Ananias and his wife what they had done.
2) On hearing it, they fall down dead.
3) On seeing this  "great fear came upon all the church and upon all who heard these things."
So it is true even in this case that "As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten: be zealous therefore, and repent." (Revelations 3:19)

If God were "Just" everyone guilty of the same sin would receive the same punishment.
If God were "Just", those hired at the eleventh hour would receive less than those hired early in the morning who had worked all the day, but instead, Our Lord tells us that they will receive the same wage (Matthew 20:1-16).
God is not Just.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Entscheidungsproblem on February 19, 2009, 05:03:33 PM
One of the main problems I see with discussions of purgatory is just general misunderstandings, and this happens in both Orthodox and Roman Catholic camps.  Purgatory to Roman Catholics is a sign of the Lord's divine and complete love for us, not a sign that He is vengeful and fairly petty.  The thing about purgatory is that it is difficult to discuss and debate since it is an extremely vague "condition".  Experiencing purgatory meant that you died in a state of grace, you are going to experience Paradise, you are not damned.  Now, the "purifying fire", it is not meant to be viewed in a similar mind as the torments of Hell, yet many jump to that conclusion.  Why is this "purifying fire" not the burning desire and longing within the person to be united with our Lord?  Why is "pain" associated with it not the pain we all feel when we act against the way Christ has commanded us?  Roman Catholics do not view God has roasting the departed over a spit demanding they repent, nor is He whiping them for every sin they did.  I am not sure my views when I was Roman Catholic would completely be endorsed by others within the RCC, but I always viewed purgatory as a condition we placed ourselves in.  It is human nature to instinctively believe in God, and we love Him and long to enter His Kingdom, yet we also never feel worthy to be in His presence.  Our Lord can look into our heart of hearts and see the true us, and with His loving hand, welcome and lead us to Paradise, while fulfilling that burning desire to be united with Him.  So much of what happens to us after death is a complete mystery, this is common within both the Orthodox Church and the Roman Catholic Church.

Anyways, that is just my two cents; I'm no theologian.  Doesn't mean so much now does it through.   :laugh:
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Papist on February 19, 2009, 05:24:18 PM
Mickey,
God chastises us to correct us.
"As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten: be zealous therefore, and repent." (Revelations 3:19)

This is not to pay a debt for sin, but it is a medicine to correct and heal us.
Regards,
George



Papist,
God chastises us to correct us.
"As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten: be zealous therefore, and repent." (Revelations 3:19)

This is not to pay a debt for sin, but it is a medicine to correct and heal us.
Regards,
George
I agree that God punishes us to correct us. That is what I have been arguing throughout this thread.
However, I don't think that he only punishes us for correction. Sometimes it is for justice. I think the death of the liars in Act chapter five is evidence of this.
They did not die because they were liars. They died because they lied to the Holy Spirit- and so, cut themselves off from the Life-Giver. They died in horror of the realization of what they had done once the Apostles exposed their deed. And their deaths were God's rebuke and correction not only of them, but the whole Community.
So the sequence is:
1) The Apostles tell Ananias and his wife what they had done.
2) On hearing it, they fall down dead.
3) On seeing this  "great fear came upon all the church and upon all who heard these things."
So it is true even in this case that "As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten: be zealous therefore, and repent." (Revelations 3:19)

If God were "Just" everyone guilty of the same sin would receive the same punishment.
If God were "Just", those hired at the eleventh hour would receive less than those hired early in the morning who had worked all the day, but instead, Our Lord tells us that they will receive the same wage (Matthew 20:1-16).
God is not Just.

Interesting interpretation. Although, I think it may be a modernist twist but not sure on this. It seem much like the incidents in the old testatment when God struck onan dead for spilling his seed or when the priests offered incesnse when it was not permited and God sturck them dead as well. I will certainly consider what you have to say, but given the backdrop of the old testament, it looks more like God struck them dead.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Papist on February 19, 2009, 05:25:49 PM
One of the main problems I see with discussions of purgatory is just general misunderstandings, and this happens in both Orthodox and Roman Catholic camps.  Purgatory to Roman Catholics is a sign of the Lord's divine and complete love for us, not a sign that He is vengeful and fairly petty.  The thing about purgatory is that it is difficult to discuss and debate since it is an extremely vague "condition".  Experiencing purgatory meant that you died in a state of grace, you are going to experience Paradise, you are not damned.  Now, the "purifying fire", it is not meant to be viewed in a similar mind as the torments of Hell, yet many jump to that conclusion.  Why is this "purifying fire" not the burning desire and longing within the person to be united with our Lord?  Why is "pain" associated with it not the pain we all feel when we act against the way Christ has commanded us?  Roman Catholics do not view God has roasting the departed over a spit demanding they repent, nor is He whiping them for every sin they did.  I am not sure my views when I was Roman Catholic would completely be endorsed by others within the RCC, but I always viewed purgatory as a condition we placed ourselves in.  It is human nature to instinctively believe in God, and we love Him and long to enter His Kingdom, yet we also never feel worthy to be in His presence.  Our Lord can look into our heart of hearts and see the true us, and with His loving hand, welcome and lead us to Paradise, while fulfilling that burning desire to be united with Him.  So much of what happens to us after death is a complete mystery, this is common within both the Orthodox Church and the Roman Catholic Church.

Anyways, that is just my two cents; I'm no theologian.  Doesn't mean so much now does it through.   :laugh:
I think this is very well stated. I have never seen Purgatory as God's way of getting back at us. Rather, he is simply preparing us for heaven because he loves us. The other alternative would be Hell.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Stefi on February 19, 2009, 06:13:30 PM
Hello,

If a soul experienced cleansing of venial sins in purgatory and then went to Heaven, how is the soul (together with its body) still going to be judged by Christ at the Final Judgment?

Thank you,
Stefania
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Entscheidungsproblem on February 19, 2009, 06:48:32 PM
Men will be judged for all their works (good and bad) and for all their sins (forgotten and unforgotten), so the Roman Catholic Church teaches that no matter the particular judgement a soul receives after death, they will still be subject, with their bodies, to the Final Judgement by Christ.  Whether they were Saints or not, whether they went immediately to Heaven, experienced(ing) Purgatory, or condemned to Hell, they will be judged.  So Particular Judgement is ongoing, as people pass away, judgements are made, but at the Final Judgement, the history of world and all that has been is written by the Just Judge, Christ.

Here is part of the CCC that explains it:  http://www.vatican.va/archive/ccc_css/archive/catechism/p123a12.htm

I'm not sure I explained that all too well, but I am sure someone will expand on it or correct me about the Roman Catholic Church's teachings.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Stefi on February 19, 2009, 07:14:08 PM
I thought that the Final Judgment is for the purpose of deciding where a soul goes to: Heaven or Hell, because before that a soul is merely "waiting." I would like to understand why a soul that's been cleansed in the purgatory and went to Heaven still needs judgment.

Thanks,
Stefania
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: LBK on February 19, 2009, 07:26:51 PM
An approach which nobody has suggested is this: The consensus patrum of the Orthodox Church is best reflected and expressed in its liturgical traditions and texts. So, for homework, kiddies, please find the texts for the Orthodox requiem (panikhida, mnemosyno, parastasis), and for the Orthodox funeral (for a layman, and, if possible, for a child). Let's see if there's any mention or hint of purgatory or purification within the texts of these services.

Any progress with your homework, folks?
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: stanley123 on February 19, 2009, 08:47:28 PM

Why is it Hard to Believe  By our catholic brothers/sisters...why do you believe that God is out to Get us one way or another ....
I thought that Our Lord spoke about everlasting punishment?Matthew 25:31 And when the Son of man shall come in his majesty, and all the angels with him, then shall he sit upon the seat of his majesty. 32 And all nations shall be gathered together before him, and he shall separate them one from another, as the shepherd separateth the sheep from the goats: 33 And he shall set the sheep on his right hand, but the goats on his left. 34 Then shall the king say to them that shall be on his right hand: Come, ye blessed of my Father, possess you the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world. 35 For I was hungry, and you gave me to eat; I was thirsty, and you gave me to drink; I was a stranger, and you took me in:

36 Naked, and you covered me: sick, and you visited me: I was in prison, and you came to me. 37 Then shall the just answer him, saying: Lord, when did we see thee hungry, and fed thee; thirsty, and gave thee drink? 38 And when did we see thee a stranger, and took thee in? or naked, and covered thee? 39 Or when did we see thee sick or in prison, and came to thee? 40 And the king answering, shall say to them: Amen I say to you, as long as you did it to one of these my least brethren, you did it to me.

41 Then he shall say to them also that shall be on his left hand: Depart from me, you cursed, into everlasting fire which was prepared for the devil and his angels. 42 For I was hungry, and you gave me not to eat: I was thirsty, and you gave me not to drink. 43 I was a stranger, and you took me not in: naked, and you covered me not: sick and in prison, and you did not visit me. 44 Then they also shall answer him, saying: Lord, when did we see thee hungry, or thirsty, or a stranger, or naked, or sick, or in prison, and did not minister to thee? 45 Then he shall answer them, saying: Amen I say to you, as long as you did it not to one of these least, neither did you do it to me.

46 And these shall go into everlasting punishment: but the just, into life everlasting.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: stashko on February 19, 2009, 09:19:03 PM
I'm sure your going to get a lot of people that just live in this world and partake in everything it has to offer be good or bad,that's why we pray for them ,that chose the bad ,so they change for the better prayer/faith does after all move mountains as The Lord told us..Our Hope is in the lord..God Tell's us when he sends his Spirit out it never comes back void..its touches and changes some one for the better...but we still have to run the race to end of this life....God knows we also have evil spiritual adversaries to contend with and its not easy for us,all we can do is have faith/hope in his mercy....
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Jetavan on February 19, 2009, 09:44:37 PM
Liturgical texts are of course a great source for doctrine, alongside the decrees of Councils.

Since a reference has been made to an Orthodox Council, namely the Synod of Jerusalem in 1672, I'd be interested in LBK's and others' take on this decree which I will repost:

Quote
DECREE XVIII.

We believe that the souls of those that have fallen asleep are either at rest or in torment, according to what each hath wrought; — for when they are separated from their bodies, they depart immediately either to joy, or to sorrow and lamentation; though confessedly neither their enjoyment, nor condemnation are complete. For after the common resurrection, when the soul shall be united with the body, with which it had behaved <151> itself well or ill, each shall receive the completion of either enjoyment or of condemnation forsooth.

And such as though envolved in mortal sins have not departed in despair, but have, while still living in the body, repented, though without bringing forth any fruits of repentance — by pouring forth tears, forsooth, by kneeling while watching in prayers, by afflicting themselves, by relieving the poor, and in fine {in summation ELC} by shewing forth by their works their love towards God and their neighbour, and which the Catholic Church hath from the beginning rightly called satisfaction — of these and such like the souls depart into Hades, and there endure the punishment due to the sins they have committed. But they are aware of their future release from thence, and are delivered by the Supreme Goodness, through the prayers <152> of the Priests, and the good works which the relatives of each do for their Departed; especially the unbloody Sacrifice availing in the highest degree; which each offereth particularly for his relatives that have fallen asleep, and which the Catholic and Apostolic Church offereth daily for all alike; it being, of course, understood that we know not the time of their release. For that there is deliverance for such from their direful condition, and that before the common resurrection and judgment we know and believe; but when we know not.

If I would slightly edit the last paragraph to make it more lucid:

And [those who have died after having repented of their] mortal sins have not departed in despair. [Because, having repented] though without bringing forth any fruits of [such] repentance — by pouring forth tears, forsooth, by kneeling while watching in prayers, by afflicting themselves, by relieving the poor, and [in short] by shewing forth by their works their love towards God and their neighbour, and which the Catholic Church hath from the beginning rightly called satisfaction — [these] souls depart into Hades, and there endure the punishment due to the sins they have committed [, punishment that, as seen in the paragraph below, may actually cease, even before the common resurrection and Judgment]. [In other words, those who have repented of their mortal sins and then died, before having demonstrated works of love toward God and Man, will endure punishment proportionate to the sins committed.]

But they are aware of their future [pre-resurrection, pre-Judgment] release from thence, and are delivered by the Supreme Goodness, through the prayers of the Priests, and the good works which the relatives of each do for their Departed; especially the unbloody Sacrifice availing in the highest degree; which each offereth particularly for his relatives that have fallen asleep, and which the Catholic and Apostolic Church offereth daily for all alike; it being, of course, understood that we know not the time of their release. For that there is deliverance for such from their direful condition, and that before the common resurrection and judgment we know and believe; but when we know not. [That is, the punishment that these souls undergo after death, is punishment that can cease -- even before the common resurrection and Judgment -- due to prayers and works of those living. The soul could have avoided the punishments if the soul, before dying, had done works of love after repenting of its mortal sins.]

Would that be a proper interpolation of the paragraph?
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Papist on February 20, 2009, 01:32:37 PM
I thought that the Final Judgment is for the purpose of deciding where a soul goes to: Heaven or Hell, because before that a soul is merely "waiting." I would like to understand why a soul that's been cleansed in the purgatory and went to Heaven still needs judgment.

Thanks,
Stefania
In Catholic theology the final judgement has different purposes depending on whether or not some one has already passed away. For those who have passed away, the final judgement does not change where a soul is. If its already in hell, it will not leave hell. For this soul, the final judgement is a public demonstration of God's justice. If the soul is already in heaven, this soul will not leave heaven. For this soul the final judgement is a public demonstration of God's mercy. For those who have not passed away, the final judgement will determine that person's final destiny and will publicly demonstrate God's mercy and justice.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Stefi on February 20, 2009, 02:11:27 PM
Thanks for explaining it to me.

Stefania
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: stashko on February 20, 2009, 02:29:24 PM
I thought that the Final Judgment is for the purpose of deciding where a soul goes to: Heaven or Hell, because before that a soul is merely "waiting." I would like to understand why a soul that's been cleansed in the purgatory and went to Heaven still needs judgment.

Thanks,
Stefania
In Catholic theology the final judgement has different purposes depending on whether or not some one has already passed away. For those who have passed away, the final judgement does not change where a soul is. If its already in hell, it will not leave hell. For this soul, the final judgement is a public demonstration of God's justice. If the soul is already in heaven, this soul will not leave heaven. For this soul the final judgement is a public demonstration of God's mercy. For those who have not passed away, the final judgement will determine that person's final destiny and will publicly demonstrate God's mercy and justice.


 ??? ???How is it there not going to leave heaven at the end or hell as you believe there in, doesn't God judges The transfigured ressurected Body with the souls on this earth be it good souls or the Bad.,and casts the transfigured bad ones body and soul in the lake of fire..and the good ones transfigured remain body and soul on this earth were the new jerusalem is...were  God Is heaven is.....
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Entscheidungsproblem on February 20, 2009, 02:32:04 PM
I thought that the Final Judgment is for the purpose of deciding where a soul goes to: Heaven or Hell, because before that a soul is merely "waiting." I would like to understand why a soul that's been cleansed in the purgatory and went to Heaven still needs judgment.

Thanks,
Stefania
In Catholic theology the final judgement has different purposes depending on whether or not some one has already passed away. For those who have passed away, the final judgement does not change where a soul is. If its already in hell, it will not leave hell. For this soul, the final judgement is a public demonstration of God's justice. If the soul is already in heaven, this soul will not leave heaven. For this soul the final judgement is a public demonstration of God's mercy. For those who have not passed away, the final judgement will determine that person's final destiny and will publicly demonstrate God's mercy and justice.


 ??? ???How is it there not going to leave heaven at the end or hell as you believe there in, doesn't God judges The transfigured ressurected Body with the souls on this earth be it good souls or the Bad.,and casts the transfigured bad ones body and soul in the lake of fire..and the good ones transfigured remain body and soul on this earth were the new jerusalem is...were  God Is heaven is.....

I believe he means that their judgement will not change (not leaving to be placed elsewhere).  The body will still be reunited with soul, they will still appear before Christ the Judge, etc.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Jetavan on February 20, 2009, 02:40:07 PM
I thought that the Final Judgment is for the purpose of deciding where a soul goes to: Heaven or Hell, because before that a soul is merely "waiting." I would like to understand why a soul that's been cleansed in the purgatory and went to Heaven still needs judgment.

Thanks,
Stefania
In Catholic theology the final judgement has different purposes depending on whether or not some one has already passed away. For those who have passed away, the final judgement does not change where a soul is. If its already in hell, it will not leave hell. For this soul, the final judgement is a public demonstration of God's justice. If the soul is already in heaven, this soul will not leave heaven. For this soul the final judgement is a public demonstration of God's mercy. For those who have not passed away, the final judgement will determine that person's final destiny and will publicly demonstrate God's mercy and justice.


 ??? ???How is it there not going to leave heaven at the end or hell as you believe there in, doesn't God judges The transfigured ressurected Body with the souls on this earth be it good souls or the Bad.,and casts the transfigured bad ones body and soul in the lake of fire..and the good ones transfigured remain body and soul on this earth were the new jerusalem is...were  God Is heaven is.....

I believe he means that their judgement will not change (not leaving to be placed elsewhere).  The body will still be reunited with soul, they will still appear before Christ the Judge, etc.

Sounds vaguely Augustinian-esque.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: ignatius on February 20, 2009, 02:47:09 PM

Sounds vaguely Augustinian-esque.

You don't believe in a 'physical' resurrection of the body?
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Jetavan on February 20, 2009, 02:59:01 PM

Sounds vaguely Augustinian-esque.

You don't believe in a 'physical' resurrection of the body?

I was actually referring to the "no-change-in-status" idea. :o
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Entscheidungsproblem on February 20, 2009, 03:46:25 PM

Sounds vaguely Augustinian-esque.

You don't believe in a 'physical' resurrection of the body?

I was actually referring to the "no-change-in-status" idea. :o

Well, they are asking for the Roman Catholic point of view.   ;)

I guess there is a belief in a change though, you experience a fullness when your soul is reunited with your body, according to the CCC.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: JoeS on February 22, 2009, 09:41:03 PM
I thought that the Final Judgment is for the purpose of deciding where a soul goes to: Heaven or Hell, because before that a soul is merely "waiting." I would like to understand why a soul that's been cleansed in the purgatory and went to Heaven still needs judgment.

Thanks,
Stefania
In Catholic theology the final judgement has different purposes depending on whether or not some one has already passed away. For those who have passed away, the final judgement does not change where a soul is. If its already in hell, it will not leave hell. For this soul, the final judgement is a public demonstration of God's justice. If the soul is already in heaven, this soul will not leave heaven. For this soul the final judgement is a public demonstration of God's mercy. For those who have not passed away, the final judgement will determine that person's final destiny and will publicly demonstrate God's mercy and justice.

In Orthodoxy the soul after death experiences a sense of where it will reside for eternity.  There is a foretaste of eternity but not directly.  Those who have died are in a waiting state not place.  Those who have not repented of their sins have eternal damnation to look forward to (no one except the devil and his anges are in Hell).  Those who have repented will be judged and rewarded through God's mercy.  We pray for those departed and we believe that these prayers and sacrifices will help those who may even be on the cusp of hell can be helped by these prayers and granted God's mercy as well.  Are there "gray" areas in this waiting state?  Yes.

This is my belief as an Orthodox Christian.

 

Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: ignatius on February 22, 2009, 10:25:37 PM
I thought that the Final Judgment is for the purpose of deciding where a soul goes to: Heaven or Hell, because before that a soul is merely "waiting." I would like to understand why a soul that's been cleansed in the purgatory and went to Heaven still needs judgment.

Thanks,
Stefania
In Catholic theology the final judgement has different purposes depending on whether or not some one has already passed away. For those who have passed away, the final judgement does not change where a soul is. If its already in hell, it will not leave hell. For this soul, the final judgement is a public demonstration of God's justice. If the soul is already in heaven, this soul will not leave heaven. For this soul the final judgement is a public demonstration of God's mercy. For those who have not passed away, the final judgement will determine that person's final destiny and will publicly demonstrate God's mercy and justice.

In Orthodoxy the soul after death experiences a sense of where it will reside for eternity.  There is a foretaste of eternity but not directly.  Those who have died are in a waiting state not place.  Those who have not repented of their sins have eternal damnation to look forward to (no one except the devil and his anges are in Hell).  Those who have repented will be judged and rewarded through God's mercy.  We pray for those departed and we believe that these prayers and sacrifices will help those who may even be on the cusp of hell can be helped by these prayers and granted God's mercy as well.  Are there "gray" areas in this waiting state?  Yes.

This is my belief as an Orthodox Christian.

Grace and Peace,

I believe Plato said it most profoundly...

It's ridiculous, isn't it, to strain every nerve to attain the utmost exactness and clarity about things of little value and not to consider the most important things worthy of the greatest exactness? ~ Plato Republic 504d

I believe Rome has always taken these words from the Greek Divine, as he was known in the early Church, to be most influential it it's considerations of all things dogmatic.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Papist on February 22, 2009, 11:38:57 PM
I thought that the Final Judgment is for the purpose of deciding where a soul goes to: Heaven or Hell, because before that a soul is merely "waiting." I would like to understand why a soul that's been cleansed in the purgatory and went to Heaven still needs judgment.

Thanks,
Stefania
In Catholic theology the final judgement has different purposes depending on whether or not some one has already passed away. For those who have passed away, the final judgement does not change where a soul is. If its already in hell, it will not leave hell. For this soul, the final judgement is a public demonstration of God's justice. If the soul is already in heaven, this soul will not leave heaven. For this soul the final judgement is a public demonstration of God's mercy. For those who have not passed away, the final judgement will determine that person's final destiny and will publicly demonstrate God's mercy and justice.


 ??? ???How is it there not going to leave heaven at the end or hell as you believe there in, doesn't God judges The transfigured ressurected Body with the souls on this earth be it good souls or the Bad.,and casts the transfigured bad ones body and soul in the lake of fire..and the good ones transfigured remain body and soul on this earth were the new jerusalem is...were  God Is heaven is.....
Yawn
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: stanley123 on February 22, 2009, 11:52:30 PM
We pray for those departed and we believe that these prayers and sacrifices will help those who may even be on the cusp of hell can be helped by these prayers and granted God's mercy as well.  Are there "gray" areas in this waiting state?  Yes.

This is my belief as an Orthodox Christian.
"Gray" areas in the waiting state, or the cusp of hell?  I don't see an insurmountable difference between what you are speaking of here, and what Catholics are taught about Purgatory.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Jetavan on February 23, 2009, 02:00:17 PM
We pray for those departed and we believe that these prayers and sacrifices will help those who may even be on the cusp of hell can be helped by these prayers and granted God's mercy as well.  Are there "gray" areas in this waiting state?  Yes.

This is my belief as an Orthodox Christian.
"Gray" areas in the waiting state, or the cusp of hell?  I don't see an insurmountable difference between what you are speaking of here, and what Catholics are taught about Purgatory.

Catholic Purgatory is a state of those absolutely destined for Salvation.

Whereas a truly "gray/grey" area, is a state of someone who might be on the path to Perdition, but whose fate might be changed by the prayers of the living.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Asteriktos on February 23, 2009, 02:08:59 PM
Quote
I read this quote online. Did Mark of Ephesus really say this?

Oh really? You read it online you say? :P Try these two links...

June 5th 2008 (http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,13820.msg233925.html#msg233925)
Feb. 11th 2009 (http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,13820.msg291626.html#msg291626)
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Deacon Lance on March 24, 2009, 11:06:01 PM
From the Catechism of the Catholic Church

III. THE FINAL PURIFICATION, OR PURGATORY

1030 All who die in God's grace and friendship, but still imperfectly purified, are indeed assured of their eternal salvation; but after death they undergo purification, so as to achieve the holiness necessary to enter the joy of heaven.

1031 The Church gives the name Purgatory to this final purification of the elect, which is entirely different from the punishment of the damned.606 The Church formulated her doctrine of faith on Purgatory especially at the Councils of Florence and Trent. The tradition of the Church, by reference to certain texts of Scripture, speaks of a cleansing fire:607


As for certain lesser faults, we must believe that, before the Final Judgment, there is a purifying fire. He who is truth says that whoever utters blasphemy against the Holy Spirit will be pardoned neither in this age nor in the age to come. From this sentence we understand that certain offenses can be forgiven in this age, but certain others in the age to come.608

1032 This teaching is also based on the practice of prayer for the dead, already mentioned in Sacred Scripture: "Therefore [Judas Maccabeus] made atonement for the dead, that they might be delivered from their sin."609 From the beginning the Church has honored the memory of the dead and offered prayers in suffrage for them, above all the Eucharistic sacrifice, so that, thus purified, they may attain the beatific vision of God.610 The Church also commends almsgiving, indulgences, and works of penance undertaken on behalf of the dead:


Let us help and commemorate them. If Job's sons were purified by their father's sacrifice, why would we doubt that our offerings for the dead bring them some consolation? Let us not hesitate to help those who have died and to offer our prayers for them.611

Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: username! on March 25, 2009, 01:07:40 AM
username!,

They were the easiest to find and post (and its late and I just got back from an icon painting class 
:) ) but several Orthodox authors deal with subject.  As far as standard teaching goes , I am not aware of one.  Some hold to toll-houses, some believe in release from the fore-court of hell, some don't believe in anything, and each of them is acceptable as theological opinion.

The Church does not state that Purgatory is about paying a debt.  The Catechism states: "The Church gives the name Purgatory to this final purification of the elect, which is entirely different from the punishment of the damned."  I don't see how purification can be equated with punishment.  I think the Catholic teaching, as cited in the Catechism,  is actually much more compatible with Orthodox theology than the Orthodox theologumen of release from the fore-court of Hell, which definately entails punishment and suffering.  I agree with you in rejecting medieval Latin errors on the subject. 

Fr. Deacon Lance

Yet spending time somewhere to be purified from the sins you committed during life is paying debt :) A purification period in a place set aside for the elect is not found in the Orthodox Church.  We are forgiven/healed and we don't subscribe to owing time for purification vis-a-vis purgatory.  These differences are indeed huge.  Toll houses are a weak argument since it isn't an official part of the deposit of faith. 

Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Irish Hermit on March 25, 2009, 01:11:54 AM

1032 This teaching is also based on the practice of prayer for the dead, already mentioned in Sacred Scripture: "Therefore [Judas Maccabeus] made atonement for the dead, that they might be delivered from their sin."

Father,

I'd lile to comment if I may, for those who don't know the context. 

What had happened was that many of the dead Jewish soldiers were found to have small idols in their clothing.  They had been worshipping idols, seeking their protection in warfare,  and the text says that this idolatry is the reason God allowed them to be slain in battle.

So the surviving soldiers began to offer profound prayers that this dreadul sin would be forgiven and Judas Maccabeus decided to send a large quantity of silver to the Jerusalem temple for prayers for the forgivness of these idolators.

The whole incident substantiates not just prayers for the dead but the Orthodox hope and belief that sin, very serious sin (mortal sin if you will), may be forgiven by God after death.

2 Macc 12: 39-46

Fr Ambrose

Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Irish Hermit on March 25, 2009, 01:15:56 AM
As for certain lesser faults, we must believe that, before the Final Judgment, there is a purifying fire. He who is truth says that whoever utters blasphemy against the Holy Spirit will be pardoned neither in this age nor in the age to come. From this sentence we understand that certain offenses can be forgiven in this age, but certain others in the age to come.

This question  of the Catechism's mention of sins being forgiven after death used to come up frequently on CAF, and people would say that it means that venial sins may be forgiven after death, not mortal sins. 

I checked with a Catholic bishop and was told that this is so.  Mortal sin cannot be forgiven after death, only venial sin can.

What is the official teaching?
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Deacon Lance on March 25, 2009, 01:22:04 AM
IV. HELL

1033 We cannot be united with God unless we freely choose to love him. But we cannot love God if we sin gravely against him, against our neighbor or against ourselves: "He who does not love remains in death. Anyone who hates his brother is a murderer, and you know that no murderer has eternal life abiding in him."612 Our Lord warns us that we shall be separated from him if we fail to meet the serious needs of the poor and the little ones who are his brethren.613 To die in mortal sin without repenting and accepting God's merciful love means remaining separated from him for ever by our own free choice. This state of definitive self-exclusion from communion with God and the blessed is called "hell."

1034 Jesus often speaks of "Gehenna" of "the unquenchable fire" reserved for those who to the end of their lives refuse to believe and be converted, where both soul and body can be lost.614 Jesus solemnly proclaims that he "will send his angels, and they will gather . . . all evil doers, and throw them into the furnace of fire,"615 and that he will pronounce the condemnation: "Depart from me, you cursed, into the eternal fire!"616

1035 The teaching of the Church affirms the existence of hell and its eternity. Immediately after death the souls of those who die in a state of mortal sin descend into hell, where they suffer the punishments of hell, "eternal fire."617 The chief punishment of hell is eternal separation from God, in whom alone man can possess the life and happiness for which he was created and for which he longs.

1036 The affirmations of Sacred Scripture and the teachings of the Church on the subject of hell are a call to the responsibility incumbent upon man to make use of his freedom in view of his eternal destiny. They are at the same time an urgent call to conversion: "Enter by the narrow gate; for the gate is wide and the way is easy, that leads to destruction, and those who enter by it are many. For the gate is narrow and the way is hard, that leads to life, and those who find it are few."618


Since we know neither the day nor the hour, we should follow the advice of the Lord and watch constantly so that, when the single course of our earthly life is completed, we may merit to enter with him into the marriage feast and be numbered among the blessed, and not, like the wicked and slothful servants, be ordered to depart into the eternal fire, into the outer darkness where "men will weep and gnash their teeth."619

1037 God predestines no one to go to hell;620 for this, a willful turning away from God (a mortal sin) is necessary, and persistence in it until the end. In the Eucharistic liturgy and in the daily prayers of her faithful, the Church implores the mercy of God, who does not want "any to perish, but all to come to repentance":621

Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Deacon Lance on March 25, 2009, 01:26:29 AM
username!,

They were the easiest to find and post (and its late and I just got back from an icon painting class 
:) ) but several Orthodox authors deal with subject.  As far as standard teaching goes , I am not aware of one.  Some hold to toll-houses, some believe in release from the fore-court of hell, some don't believe in anything, and each of them is acceptable as theological opinion.

The Church does not state that Purgatory is about paying a debt.  The Catechism states: "The Church gives the name Purgatory to this final purification of the elect, which is entirely different from the punishment of the damned."  I don't see how purification can be equated with punishment.  I think the Catholic teaching, as cited in the Catechism,  is actually much more compatible with Orthodox theology than the Orthodox theologumen of release from the fore-court of Hell, which definately entails punishment and suffering.  I agree with you in rejecting medieval Latin errors on the subject. 

Fr. Deacon Lance

Yet spending time somewhere to be purified from the sins you committed during life is paying debt :) A purification period in a place set aside for the elect is not found in the Orthodox Church.  We are forgiven/healed and we don't subscribe to owing time for purification vis-a-vis purgatory.  These differences are indeed huge.  Toll houses are a weak argument since it isn't an official part of the deposit of faith. 



Ah, but the Catholic Church teaches Purgatory is a state not a place and no longer speaks of spending time there.  One simply undergoes purification. 

Fr. Deacon Lance
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Irish Hermit on March 25, 2009, 01:37:45 AM
I don't see how purification can be equated with punishment. 

Of course Catholics do not believe any more that purgatory entails
any punishment for temporal punishment due to sin. What a thought!
That previous Catholic teaching has been banished back to the Dark Ages.


There is such a teaching in the Baltimore Catechism but it is outdated now and believed only by some of the older Catholic generations.

Q. 853. How does the Church by means of Indulgences remit the temporal punishment due to sin?

A. The Church, by means of Indulgences, remits the temporal punishment due to sin by applying to us the merits of Jesus Christ, and the superabundant satisfactions of the Blessed Virgin Mary and of the saints; which merits and satisfactions are its spiritual treasury.

---

The online Catholic Encyclopdeas also seems to be stuck in a time warp and has an erroneous teaching.

Purgatory (Lat., "purgare", to make clean, to purify) in accordance with Catholic teaching is a place or condition of temporal punishment for those who, departing this life in God's grace, are, not entirely free from venial faults, or have not fully paid the satisfaction due to their transgressions.

---


Thomas Aquinas also taught erroneously that there was punishment in purgatory. In fact he speaks of it so many times that I can give you only a small selection of his words on the matter from the Summa...  Obviously, it was one of the popular heresies of his day!

The below is all from Question 2

Question 2. The Quality of Souls Who Expiate Actual Sin or Its Punishment in Purgatory


The severity of that punishment is not so much a consequence of the degree of sin, as of the disposition of the person punished, because the same sin is more severely punished then than now. Even so a person who has a better temperament is punished more severely by the same sentence than another; and yet the judge acts justly in condemning both for the same crimes to the same punishment.

In Purgatory there will be a twofold pain; one will be the pain of loss, namely the delay of the divine vision, and the pain of sense, namely punishment by corporeal.

It would seem that this punishment is voluntary. For those who are in Purgatory are upright in heart. Now uprightness in heart is to conform one's will to God's, as Augustine says (Serm. i in Ps. 32).  Therefore, since it is God's will that they be punished, they will suffer that punishment voluntarily.

Further, every wise man wills that without which he cannot obtain the end he has in view. Now those who are in Purgatory know that they cannot obtain glory, unless they be punished first. Therefore they are punished willingly.

On the contrary, no one asks to be freed from a punishment that he suffers willingly. Now those who are in Purgatory ask to be set free, as appears from many incidents related in the Dialogue of Gregory (iv, 40,65). Therefore they will not undergo that punishment voluntarily.

It is, however, possible that they [the angels] take them to the place of punishment

Since the obligation incurred by guilt is nothing else than the debt of punishment, a person is freed from that obligation by undergoing the punishment which he owed. Accordingly the punishment of Purgatory cleanses from the debt of punishment
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Deacon Lance on March 25, 2009, 01:41:44 AM
Fr. Ambrose,

Quote
Of course Catholics do not believe any more that purgatory entails
any punishment for temporal punishment due to sin. What a thought!
That previous Catholic teaching has been banished back to the Dark Ages.

I think the Catechism makes that quite clear.

Fr. Deacon Lance
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Irish Hermit on March 25, 2009, 05:08:49 AM
 How can Greek Catholics be criticized for believing in Purgatory as defined by the Catechism, when some Orthodox believe in something worse like release from the fore-court of Hell?



Remember that Pope Saint Gregory the Great prayed for the Emperor Trajan and his prayer was heard...Trajan was saved: the Roman emperor, he who was a pagan, he who killed Christians in the Colosseum!
 
Why did this great Pope of Rome pray for Trajan?

Because there was a time when the holy Church of Rome was joined with her sister Churches and grace flowed through her in abundance. There was a time when the Romans believed that in exceptional circumstances God would deliver souls from hell. But since their falling away from the unity of the Church this teaching has been rejected. An ever increasing spirit of logic and legalism slowly overwhelmed the earlier inner life of grace and freedom.

We see the belief in the great prayer which still remains in the Roman liturgy:

"Libera animas omnium fidelium defunctorum de poenis inferni et de profundo lacu."

Roman scholars will say that this prayer means exactly what it says. Roman theologians will say that this was an error in the belief of the ancient Church and they have corrected it. They have retained the prayer but they no longer understand it as their ancestors in the faith understood it.

But there is no doubt that my ancestors in the faith, from the Emerald Isle, during the millennium when they were Orthodox believed that souls could be released from hell.   Take Saint Samthann of Clonbroney (http://groups.yahoo.com/group/celt-saints/message/3274).  She was well known for the ability to get a soul out of hell.  Saint Aidan of Ferns was also known for this. Praying a soul out of hell was, however, not an uncommon accomplishment for Irish saints; one scholar Lisa Bitel has claimed it to be an "almost exclusively Celtic motif."

So, certainly in the early days when Christianity was fresh and strong they thought that they could pray a man out of hell. Now it may be seen as rather questionable theology in our days, for either Church. Maybe the early Christians were wrong. Who can say? Once again, their old belief places a gentle question mark over some of the things that we have declared certain.

Here is something from the Rule of Saint Maelruain, from the holy monastery of Tallaght. It is 8th century:

"There is nothing which a person does for a soul that has departed that does not help it, both vigil and abstinence, and singing the intercession and frequent blessings. Filii pro mortuis parentibus debent poenitere.

A whole year therefore was Saint Maidoc of Ferns, with all his people, living on water and biscuit so as to ransom the soul of Brandubh, son of Eochaidh, from hell."
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Irish Hermit on March 25, 2009, 06:55:26 AM
 How can Greek Catholics be criticized for believing in Purgatory as defined by the Catechism, when some Orthodox believe in something worse like release from the fore-court of Hell?
Quote
What are you talking about?  Please do tell me what a "release from the fore-court of hell" is? 

It's possible that Father's residual memory is playing tricks!   :)  Unless my own memory is failing me (always a possibility) I believe that the former Roman Catholic teaching of many centuries by many Popes and many great theologians (Thomas Aquinas, Robert Bellarmine) was that purgatory, as well as limbo,were sections in the upper levels of hell.  I suppose that these upper layers could be seen as the "forecourts of hell" and this would explain where the confusion comes in.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Mickey on March 25, 2009, 10:05:13 AM
So, certainly in the early days when Christianity was fresh and strong they thought that they could pray a man out of hell. Now it may be seen as rather questionable theology in our days, for either Church. Maybe the early Christians were wrong. Who can say? Once again, their old belief places a gentle question mark over some of the things that we have declared certain.
What is a merciful heart? It is a heart on fire for the whole of creation, for humanity, for the birds, for the animals, for demons, and for all that exists. By the recollection of them the eyes of a merciful person pour forth tears in abundance. By the strong and vehement mercy that grips such a person's heart, and by such great compassion, the heart is humbled and one cannot bear to hear or to see any injury or slight sorrow in any in creation. For this reason, such a person offers up tearful prayer continually even for irrational beasts, for the enemies of the truth, and for those who harm her or him, that they be protected and receive mercy. And in like manner such a person prays for the family of reptiles because of the great compassion that burns with without measure in a heart that is in the likeness of God.
St Isaac the Syrian
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: theistgal on March 25, 2009, 11:15:31 AM
I guess I don't really understand why the idea of a place like purgatory is offensive to the Orthodox (which is probably why I haven't converted, yet  ;) ).

I understand that you don't have the same concept of original sin, so perhaps that is where the difference comes in - yes?

FWIW, C.S. Lewis, who certainly wasn't concerned about anything the Pope had to say, also believed in Purgatory.  He describes it in "Mere Christianity" and even in some of his children's books.  Remember when Eustace had to have his dragon-skin torn off in "The Voyage of the Dawn Treader"?  That was Lewis' definition of Purgatory, right there.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Alpo on March 25, 2009, 11:27:26 AM
Fr. Ambrose,

Quote
Of course Catholics do not believe any more that purgatory entails
any punishment for temporal punishment due to sin. What a thought!
That previous Catholic teaching has been banished back to the Dark Ages.

I think the Catechism makes that quite clear.

Fr. Deacon Lance


If the Catechism doesn't teach the notion of temporal punishments what does this mean:

Quote from: The Catechism of the Catholic Church
The punishments of sin

1472 To understand this doctrine and practice of the Church, it is necessary to understand that sin has a double consequence. Grave sin deprives us of communion with God and therefore makes us incapable of eternal life, the privation of which is called the "eternal punishment" of sin. On the other hand every sin, even venial, entails an unhealthy attachment to creatures, which must be purified either here on earth, or after death in the state called Purgatory. This purification frees one from what is called the "temporal punishment" of sin.These two punishments must not be conceived of as a kind of vengeance inflicted by God from without, but as following from the very nature of sin. A conversion which proceeds from a fervent charity can attain the complete purification of the sinner in such a way that no punishment would remain.

1473 The forgiveness of sin and restoration of communion with God entail the remission of the eternal punishment of sin, but temporal punishment of sin remains. While patiently bearing sufferings and trials of all kinds and, when the day comes, serenely facing death, the Christian must strive to accept this temporal punishment of sin as a grace. He should strive by works of mercy and charity, as well as by prayer and the various practices of penance, to put off completely the "old man" and to put on the "new man."

 ???

Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Rosehip on March 25, 2009, 11:28:24 AM
There are Protestants whose concept of original sin is very close to what the RCs teach, and yet they don't believe in purgatory either-of course because it is not a biblical doctrine.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: StGeorge on March 25, 2009, 12:05:56 PM
Show and Tell:

(http://www.geocities.com/mcgeerpa/ourladyconsolation.jpg)

I took this photo several years ago.  It somewhat epitomizes (I think at least) the RC understanding. 
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: username! on March 25, 2009, 12:57:15 PM
I guess I don't really understand why the idea of a place like purgatory is offensive to the Orthodox (which is probably why I haven't converted, yet  ;) ).

I understand that you don't have the same concept of original sin, so perhaps that is where the difference comes in - yes?

FWIW, C.S. Lewis, who certainly wasn't concerned about anything the Pope had to say, also believed in Purgatory.  He describes it in "Mere Christianity" and even in some of his children's books.  Remember when Eustace had to have his dragon-skin torn off in "The Voyage of the Dawn Treader"?  That was Lewis' definition of Purgatory, right there.

No one said it is offensive to the Orthodox.  The concept of Original sin is different, the concept of the afterlife is different, et al... when you add this all up think about what that really changes? 
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: theistgal on March 25, 2009, 01:44:22 PM
No one said it is offensive to the Orthodox.

No offense meant by saying it's offensive ..  8)

The concept of Original sin is different, the concept of the afterlife is different, et al... when you add this all up think about what that really changes?

To be honest, I'm just not sure.  I'm still learning.

Frankly, my personal opinion, which doesn't really coincide with either Catholic or Orthodox AFAIK, is that none of us really knows for sure till we get there, so it's all just speculation at this point.  :angel:
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Mickey on March 25, 2009, 02:15:34 PM
none of us really knows for sure till we get there, so it's all just speculation at this point.  :angel:
That pretty much sums up the Orthodox understanding. We do not speak about that which we do not know. Purgatory was not something that was dogmatized when the Churches were one. And it is not something that the Orthodox have accepted as doctrine.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: username! on March 25, 2009, 03:34:34 PM
No one said it is offensive to the Orthodox.

No offense meant by saying it's offensive ..  8)

The concept of Original sin is different, the concept of the afterlife is different, et al... when you add this all up think about what that really changes?

To be honest, I'm just not sure.  I'm still learning.

Frankly, my personal opinion, which doesn't really coincide with either Catholic or Orthodox AFAIK, is that none of us really knows for sure till we get there, so it's all just speculation at this point.  :angel:

No we can go with what has been revealed to us and that doesn't include any sort of purgatory.. no matter how you flip and spin the definition.  Different definitions of things theological lead to what?  Who created everything including the theological issues we debate?  If we have different approached and dogma on things related to God what can be said ultimately about those differing approaches? 
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: theistgal on March 25, 2009, 04:14:07 PM
No we can go with what has been revealed to us and that doesn't include any sort of purgatory.. no matter how you flip and spin the definition.

What exactly is it that has been revealed to you that hasn't been revealed to me?  Because I have been told the same thing about purgatory by the (roman) Catholic Church, and am not convinced.  What proof do you have that you're right and they're wrong?

Also, I noticed Mickey says:

Quote
That pretty much sums up the Orthodox understanding. We do not speak about that which we do not know.

What do you know that Mickey and I don't know?  ;)
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Deacon Lance on March 25, 2009, 04:28:43 PM
(If you don't believe me, try going to a Catholic school to give a small talk on icons and experience the pain of the children almost shouting at you:  "No, Father, we don't pray to Mary.  We don't pray to Saints" and you glance at the teacher and she smiles wryly and says that this is the way things are taught now.)

My mother was a Catholic School teacher for 25 years until she retired a couple years ago, and I can assure you she taught her kids to pray to the Virgin Mary and the Saints and to reverence icons.  There are many Catholic teachers still teaching things the "old way".

Fr. Deacon Lance
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: username! on March 25, 2009, 04:32:57 PM
No we can go with what has been revealed to us and that doesn't include any sort of purgatory.. no matter how you flip and spin the definition.

What exactly is it that has been revealed to you that hasn't been revealed to me?  Because I have been told the same thing about purgatory by the (roman) Catholic Church, and am not convinced.  What proof do you have that you're right and they're wrong?

Also, I noticed Mickey says:

Quote
That pretty much sums up the Orthodox understanding. We do not speak about that which we do not know.

What do you know that Mickey and I don't know?  ;)


You obviously missed what I meant..... the only way we know anything about God what has been revealed to us, not to me personally.  And I think you're misunderstanding the jist of the argument, Catholics, no matter what rite are not the same as Orthodox in belief.  And the beliefs are so different on key things, basic things not just the pope thing either. 
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: username! on March 25, 2009, 04:38:32 PM
No we can go with what has been revealed to us and that doesn't include any sort of purgatory.. no matter how you flip and spin the definition.

What exactly is it that has been revealed to you that hasn't been revealed to me?  Because I have been told the same thing about purgatory by the (roman) Catholic Church, and am not convinced.  What proof do you have that you're right and they're wrong?

Also, I noticed Mickey says:

Quote
That pretty much sums up the Orthodox understanding. We do not speak about that which we do not know.

What do you know that Mickey and I don't know?  ;)

Never said revealed to me did I?  I would suggest learning the fundamental differences between the Eastern Orthodox and Roman Catholic Communion before trying to ask me what I know. 
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: theistgal on March 25, 2009, 04:40:19 PM
Never said revealed to me did I?  I would suggest learning the fundamental differences between the Eastern Orthodox and Roman Catholic Communion before trying to ask me what I know. 

I have obviously stepped into this on the wrong foot as usual.  My apologies for whatever I have said that has made you angry with me.  I will creep humbly back into the shadows now.  :'(
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Deacon Lance on March 25, 2009, 04:42:25 PM
Fr. Ambrose,

Quote
Of course Catholics do not believe any more that purgatory entails
any punishment for temporal punishment due to sin. What a thought!
That previous Catholic teaching has been banished back to the Dark Ages.

I think the Catechism makes that quite clear.

Fr. Deacon Lance


If the Catechism doesn't teach the notion of temporal punishments what does this mean:

Quote from: The Catechism of the Catholic Church
The punishments of sin

1472 To understand this doctrine and practice of the Church, it is necessary to understand that sin has a double consequence. Grave sin deprives us of communion with God and therefore makes us incapable of eternal life, the privation of which is called the "eternal punishment" of sin. On the other hand every sin, even venial, entails an unhealthy attachment to creatures, which must be purified either here on earth, or after death in the state called Purgatory. This purification frees one from what is called the "temporal punishment" of sin.These two punishments must not be conceived of as a kind of vengeance inflicted by God from without, but as following from the very nature of sin. A conversion which proceeds from a fervent charity can attain the complete purification of the sinner in such a way that no punishment would remain.

1473 The forgiveness of sin and restoration of communion with God entail the remission of the eternal punishment of sin, but temporal punishment of sin remains. While patiently bearing sufferings and trials of all kinds and, when the day comes, serenely facing death, the Christian must strive to accept this temporal punishment of sin as a grace. He should strive by works of mercy and charity, as well as by prayer and the various practices of penance, to put off completely the "old man" and to put on the "new man."

 ???



Alpo,

I think this is where the Catechism gets into trouble by falling back into punishment language and trying to assign temporality (place, time, punishment) to the non-temporal (soul).  I think they should have concentrated on: "On the other hand every sin, even venial, entails an unhealthy attachment to creatures" which the Eastern Fathers would say is our fallen nature and its subjugation to the passions.  It can be interpreted as punishment in so far as we are attached to and enjoy our passions and are loathe to give them up.  But as the Catechism states that is punishment we inflict on ourselves not one that God inflicts on us.  The purpose of repentance and asceticism is to purify us of our passions.  If we die repentant but still attached to our passions it makes sense for me that one will experince God's light(fire) as purifying, just as those unrepentant will experience it as torture, and those purified in this life experince it only as joy.

Fr. Deacon Lance
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Deacon Lance on March 25, 2009, 04:56:31 PM
Ah but isn't this thread really about what the Greek Catholics believe? 

Yes it is.  The problem is, some Orthodox like to dig up the worst Latin theological excesses and present them as the required belief of Greek Catholics.

Why does it always have to come back to this same argument... "this is held by some Orthodox."

Because its a good arguement.  How can Greek Catholics be criticized for believing in Purgatory as defined by the Catechism, when some Orthodox believe in something worse like release from the fore-court of Hell?

Fr. Deacon Lance

What are you talking about?  Please do tell me what a "release from the fore-court of hell" is? 

I believe that it is standard Orthodox teaching that after death and particular judgement the Heaven or Hell we experience is not the final version but only a foretaste, the fore-court if you will,  of what we will receive on the Great Day of Judgement and the Resurrection of the Dead.  Some Fathers taught that offering Liturgies and prayers for the dead can obtain the release of some from the fore-court of Hell.  This is an acceptable theological opinion for Orthodox to hold, unless I am mistaken.  This not quite the same as the Latin idea of Purgatory but close. 

Fr. Deacon Lance
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Alpo on March 25, 2009, 07:18:58 PM
I think this is where the Catechism gets into trouble...

So we agree that according to the Catechism "purgatory entails any punishment for temporal punishment due to sin"? ;)
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: username! on March 25, 2009, 10:02:42 PM
Ah but isn't this thread really about what the Greek Catholics believe? 

Yes it is.  The problem is, some Orthodox like to dig up the worst Latin theological excesses and present them as the required belief of Greek Catholics.

Why does it always have to come back to this same argument... "this is held by some Orthodox."

Because its a good arguement.  How can Greek Catholics be criticized for believing in Purgatory as defined by the Catechism, when some Orthodox believe in something worse like release from the fore-court of Hell?

Fr. Deacon Lance

What are you talking about?  Please do tell me what a "release from the fore-court of hell" is? 

I believe that it is standard Orthodox teaching that after death and particular judgement the Heaven or Hell we experience is not the final version but only a foretaste, the fore-court if you will,  of what we will receive on the Great Day of Judgement and the Resurrection of the Dead.  Some Fathers taught that offering Liturgies and prayers for the dead can obtain the release of some from the fore-court of Hell.  This is an acceptable theological opinion for Orthodox to hold, unless I am mistaken.  This not quite the same as the Latin idea of Purgatory but close. 

Fr. Deacon Lance

The difference is what matters. It's not the same, I wouldn't call a football a Ford F-350.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Irish Hermit on March 25, 2009, 10:53:02 PM

I think this is where the Catechism gets into trouble by falling back into punishment language and trying to assign temporality (place, time, punishment) to the non-temporal (soul).

We have been told for years on CAF that this present Catechism is semi-infallible.    It was composed on the instructions of Pope John Paul II who vetted every line of it and then commanded its use throughout the Catholic Church.

We also have the teaching on this matter of purgatory and punishment from Pope Paul VI and he completes his document with the instructions that his words must stand until eternity

The 1967 Apostolic Constitution Indulgentium Doctrina 
http://www.vatican.va/holy_father/paul_vi/apost_constitutions/documents/hf_p-vi_apc_19670101_indulgentiarum-doctrina_en.html


"2. It is a divinely revealed truth that sins bring punishments inflicted by God's sanctity and justice. These must be expiated either on this earth through the sorrows, miseries and calamities of this life and above all through death, or else in the life beyond through fire and torments or "purifying" punishments..."

Sorry, Father, but you are setting your own opinion in opposition to the official teaching of two of the modern Popes.  You lose.  Two tanks versus one Tonka toy.   ;D

Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Jetavan on March 25, 2009, 11:03:46 PM

We also have the teaching on this matter of purgatory and punishment from Pope Paul VI and he completes his document with the instructions that his words must stand until eternity

The 1967 Apostolic Constitution Indulgentium Doctrina 
http://www.vatican.va/holy_father/paul_vi/apost_constitutions/documents/hf_p-vi_apc_19670101_indulgentiarum-doctrina_en.html

Father,

A lot has changed since 1967. :o
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Irish Hermit on March 25, 2009, 11:09:51 PM
[I believe that it is standard Orthodox teaching that after death and particular [partial is the Orthodox term] judgement the Heaven or Hell we experience is not the final version but only a foretaste, the fore-court if you will,  of what we will receive on the Great Day of Judgement and the Resurrection of the Dead. 

Yes.


Quote
Some Fathers taught that offering Liturgies and prayers for the dead can obtain the release of some from the fore-court of Hell. 

Are these Fathers not your Fathers also?


Quote
Some Fathers taught that offering Liturgies and prayers for the dead can obtain the release of some from the fore-court of Hell.

Not from the "fore-court of Hell" but from Hell.   I have not come across the expression "fore-court of Hell", neither in patristic writings nor elsewhere.  Do you have one or two references. 
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Irish Hermit on March 25, 2009, 11:17:35 PM

We also have the teaching on this matter of purgatory and punishment from Pope Paul VI and he completes his document with the instructions that his words must stand until eternity

The 1967 Apostolic Constitution Indulgentium Doctrina 
http://www.vatican.va/holy_father/paul_vi/apost_constitutions/documents/hf_p-vi_apc_19670101_indulgentiarum-doctrina_en.html

Father,

A lot has changed since 1967. :o

So in 1967 Pope Paul VI was guilty of teaching the faithful heresy.

When was this corrected?   What Pope and what document overturned Pope Paul's teaching?   Do you have references? 

When a Pope concludes an Apostolic Constitution with the admonition that his teaching must stand unto eternity, is this simply hogwash?  Does everybody know that it can be rejected 40 years later?

Is there nothing certain and solid in your Church apart from the two infallible statements: the Immaculate Conception and the Assumption? 
----------

The 1967 Apostolic Constitution Indulgentium Doctrina 
http://www.vatican.va/holy_father/paul_vi/apost_constitutions/documents/hf_p-vi_apc_19670101_indulgentiarum-doctrina_en.html



Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: LBK on March 25, 2009, 11:19:20 PM
Quote
Is there nothing certain and solid in your Church apart from the two infallible statements: the Immaculate Conception and the Assumption? 


Fr Ambrose, there's a third statement: Papal Infallibility (1870).  :laugh:
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Irish Hermit on March 25, 2009, 11:26:53 PM
Quote
Is there nothing certain and solid in your Church apart from the two infallible statements: the Immaculate Conception and the Assumption? 


Fr Ambrose, there's a third statement: Papal Infallibility (1870).  :laugh:

That's a tricky one since it was proclaimed by a Council of the Roman Catholic Church.  It seems that the Melkite Catholics (and other Eastern Catholics?) do not feel obliged to accept doctrine promulgated by what they see as local Councuils of the Church of Rome.  They do not accept these Councils as Ecumenical.  Even their eparchial website in the States says this in black and white.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Jetavan on March 25, 2009, 11:45:32 PM

We also have the teaching on this matter of purgatory and punishment from Pope Paul VI and he completes his document with the instructions that his words must stand until eternity

The 1967 Apostolic Constitution Indulgentium Doctrina 
http://www.vatican.va/holy_father/paul_vi/apost_constitutions/documents/hf_p-vi_apc_19670101_indulgentiarum-doctrina_en.html

Father,

A lot has changed since 1967. :o

So in 1967 Pope Paul VI was guilty of teaching the faithful heresy.

When was this corrected?   What Pope and what document overturned Pope Paul's teaching?   Do you have references? 

When a Pope concludes an Apostolic Constitution with the admonition that his teaching must stand unto eternity, is this simply hogwash?  Does everybody know that it can be rejected 40 years later?

Is there nothing certain and solid in your Church apart from the two infallible statements: the Immaculate Conception and the Assumption? 
----------

The 1967 Apostolic Constitution Indulgentium Doctrina 
http://www.vatican.va/holy_father/paul_vi/apost_constitutions/documents/hf_p-vi_apc_19670101_indulgentiarum-doctrina_en.html

The Pope may have been speaking rather unofficially. Officially, the Catholic Church teaches two things about purgatory: (1) it exists [yeah, that's helpful ;D] and (2) the faithful still alive can help the souls in purgatory via prayer, offerings, etc.

I'm not sure if that's a helpful teaching or not, but the Council of Trent (http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/12575a.htm) apparently thought so:
Quote
"Whereas the Catholic Church, instructed by the Holy Ghost, has from the Sacred Scriptures and the ancient tradition of the Fathers taught in Councils and very recently in this Ecumenical synod (Sess. VI, cap. XXX; Sess. XXII cap.ii, iii) that there is a purgatory, and that the souls therein are helped by the suffrages of the faithful, but principally by the acceptable Sacrifice of the Altar; the Holy Synod enjoins on the Bishops that they diligently endeavor to have the sound doctrine of the Fathers in Councils regarding purgatory everywhere taught and preached, held and believed by the faithful" (Denzinger, "Enchiridon", 983).
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: The Iambic Pen on March 31, 2009, 03:43:29 PM
Please note that the Catechism teaches:
1.  There is a state of final purification.
2.  Prayer for those in that state is effective.

That is all Eastern Catholics are required to believe, we are not required to accept medieval Latin add ons to the above.
Are Western Catholics required to accept the medieval Latin add ons?  I realize this is a discussion about the beliefs of Greek Catholics, but I would find it interesting, to say the least, if there was a difference here.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Papist on April 01, 2009, 09:59:16 AM
would it be accurate to say that many Orthodox agree with the doctrine of Purgatory, as officially defined (which has been asserted by some ecumenically-minded Catholics), but wish that it had not been officially defined?

No, because purgatory is based on an heretical doctrine that Christ did not accomplish the full remission and satisfaction for sin.

According to Catholic theology the punishment God requires for sin is of two categories.

1.  An eternal punishment due to sin.  Only Christ could make satisfaction to the Father for this

2. A temporal punishment due to sin.  Individuals must make satisfaction for their own temporal punishment,
whether in this life by prayer and fasting and self-punishment, or in the next life by purgatorial sufferings.

Orthodoxy won't come near this theology, not even with a barge pole.   ;D
Oh Father, I would expect better than mischaracterization of the Catholic faith from a priest. How sad.
Actually, we do believe that Christ is the one who accomplished the remission of our sins. However, this does not remove temporal consequences of our sins. Christ did not take that away. Sometimes these temporal consequences spill over into the after life and this is called purgatory.
Furthermore purgatory is based on the idea that, as the scriptures that state, "nothing unclean will enter into heaven." Now, I don't know anyone who's motives and intentions are perfect and pure in everything they do. Thus, even those who die in God's friendship have some things about them that are "unclean". God must remove this uncleanliness or no one would be aloud in heaven. And yes, it is Christ's blood that washes away our sins, but even after being forgiven, are you then perfect and all of your motives pure? I think not.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: AMM on April 01, 2009, 10:56:18 AM
In my own opinion this another one of those "apophatic" moments where Orthodox belief is defined by reading up on what the Catholics say they believe and then coming out and criticizing it; i.e. we know it's wrong because the Catholics believe it.

Anyhow, one of the more interesting pieces I have read on the middle state of souls in Byzantine thought can be found here

http://www.doaks.org/publications/doaks_online_publications/DOP55/DP55ch06.pdf

It is a scholarly study published by Dumbarton Oaks.

One of the things it touches on is the rise of the idea of "demonic tollgates" as a pre Christian idea that came to fruition in the apocryphal tale of Theodora.  To quote one section

Quote
The tradition of the tollgates was firmly established throughout the east long before the end of late antiquity, although it received typically Byzantine elaboration in the tenth-century Life of Basil the Younger (d. 944). Like a play within a play, the life describes the ordeal of a certain Theodora, a pious though not perfect woman, whose soul passes through a series of twenty-two tollgates arranged in three groups of seven, with a final examination for general “inhumanity and hardness of heart.” The story proved to be quite popular and was known, for instance, to Meletios Galesiotes (ca. 1209–86), who mentions Theodora twice by name in the verses of his Alphabetalphabeto.  It is worthy of note that Mark Eugenikos (d. 1445), who was undoubtedly familiar with the tradition of the demonic tollgates, failed to mention it in his polemics against purgatory at the Council of Florence (1438–39). The attempted cover-up was soon ex-posed, however, by Eugenikos’ disciple, Gennadios Scholarios (ca. 1400–1472) who, in one of his grand gestures toward the West, stated that the trial of the “tollgates” was, in fact, the Byzantine equivalent of purgatory, minus the fireworks. Indeed, the soul of Theodora was, in the end, spared the ordeal of the tollgates after her spiritual director, St. Basil the Younger, indulged her with a gold coin taken from the coffers of his own merits

Fascinating I must say!
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Pravoslavbob on April 01, 2009, 11:08:07 AM
Provide the quote so that we can discuss it.

Here it is. 



From the Catechism of the Catholic Church

III. THE FINAL PURIFICATION, OR PURGATORY

1030 All who die in God's grace and friendship, but still imperfectly purified, are indeed assured of their eternal salvation; but after death they undergo purification, so as to achieve the holiness necessary to enter the joy of heaven.

1031 The Church gives the name Purgatory to this final purification of the elect, which is entirely different from the punishment of the damned.606 The Church formulated her doctrine of faith on Purgatory especially at the Councils of Florence and Trent. The tradition of the Church, by reference to certain texts of Scripture, speaks of a cleansing fire:607

As for certain lesser faults, we must believe that, before the Final Judgment, there is a purifying fire. He who is truth says that whoever utters blasphemy against the Holy Spirit will be pardoned neither in this age nor in the age to come. From this sentence we understand that certain offenses can be forgiven in this age, but certain others in the age to come.608

1032 This teaching is also based on the practice of prayer for the dead, already mentioned in Sacred Scripture: "Therefore [Judas Maccabeus] made atonement for the dead, that they might be delivered from their sin."609 From the beginning the Church has honored the memory of the dead and offered prayers in suffrage for them, above all the Eucharistic sacrifice, so that, thus purified, they may attain the beatific vision of God.610 The Church also commends almsgiving, indulgences, and works of penance undertaken on behalf of the dead:


Let us help and commemorate them. If Job's sons were purified by their father's sacrifice, why would we doubt that our offerings for the dead bring them some consolation? Let us not hesitate to help those who have died and to offer our prayers for them.611
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Papist on April 01, 2009, 03:18:21 PM
Provide the quote so that we can discuss it.

Here it is. 



From the Catechism of the Catholic Church

III. THE FINAL PURIFICATION, OR PURGATORY

1030 All who die in God's grace and friendship, but still imperfectly purified, are indeed assured of their eternal salvation; but after death they undergo purification, so as to achieve the holiness necessary to enter the joy of heaven.

1031 The Church gives the name Purgatory to this final purification of the elect, which is entirely different from the punishment of the damned.606 The Church formulated her doctrine of faith on Purgatory especially at the Councils of Florence and Trent. The tradition of the Church, by reference to certain texts of Scripture, speaks of a cleansing fire:607

As for certain lesser faults, we must believe that, before the Final Judgment, there is a purifying fire. He who is truth says that whoever utters blasphemy against the Holy Spirit will be pardoned neither in this age nor in the age to come. From this sentence we understand that certain offenses can be forgiven in this age, but certain others in the age to come.608

1032 This teaching is also based on the practice of prayer for the dead, already mentioned in Sacred Scripture: "Therefore [Judas Maccabeus] made atonement for the dead, that they might be delivered from their sin."609 From the beginning the Church has honored the memory of the dead and offered prayers in suffrage for them, above all the Eucharistic sacrifice, so that, thus purified, they may attain the beatific vision of God.610 The Church also commends almsgiving, indulgences, and works of penance undertaken on behalf of the dead:


Let us help and commemorate them. If Job's sons were purified by their father's sacrifice, why would we doubt that our offerings for the dead bring them some consolation? Let us not hesitate to help those who have died and to offer our prayers for them.611
The catechism is free to use traditional symbolic language to describe purgatory. It does not necessarily mean that there is a literal fire. The word fire here can just as easily mean purification or suffering as it often does in the scriptures. We as Catholics, must believe in a post death purification that invovles suffering. The word "fire" is a good symbol for this suffering.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Irish Hermit on April 01, 2009, 03:45:33 PM
would it be accurate to say that many Orthodox agree with the doctrine of Purgatory, as officially defined (which has been asserted by some ecumenically-minded Catholics), but wish that it had not been officially defined?

No, because purgatory is based on an heretical doctrine that Christ did not accomplish the full remission and satisfaction for sin.

According to Catholic theology the punishment God requires for sin is of two categories.

1.  An eternal punishment due to sin.  Only Christ could make satisfaction to the Father for this

2. A temporal punishment due to sin.  Individuals must make satisfaction for their own temporal punishment,
whether in this life by prayer and fasting and self-punishment, or in the next life by purgatorial sufferings.

Orthodoxy won't come near this theology, not even with a barge pole.   ;D
Oh Father, I would expect better than mischaracterization of the Catholic faith from a priest. How sad.
Actually, we do believe that Christ is the one who accomplished the remission of our sins. However, this does not remove temporal consequences of our sins. Christ did not take that away. Sometimes these temporal consequences spill over into the after life and this is called purgatory

Papist,

You are playing the sophist, something forced upon modern Catholics by the changes in their teachings since Vatican II, changes which they have to accept and at the same time they have to do a juggling act to make out that there have been no changes.  What a nightmare!

Will you place your hand on the holy Cross and say: 

"The Catholic Church and the Popes have never taught that there is temporal punishment in Purgatory and this involves suffering and torment.


Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Irish Hermit on April 01, 2009, 03:56:35 PM
[Oh Father, I would expect better than mischaracterization of the Catholic faith from a priest. How sad.

The problem is that some of Catholicism's theology is in a state of flux and there are divergent teachings.  So Catholics may use one argument one day and the next day use another if it is more appropriate.

I'd like to pull a post from a mutual friend who writes here.

-oOo-

Do yourself a favor and pick up any book in the 1950's teaching the Roman Catholic Faith...

This is The Faith
Fundamentals of Catholic Dogma
Everyman's Theology
Baltimore Catechism
etc

and you will find the faith taught by the Roman Catholic Church in the 1950's and 'all' of them taught Purgatory, Limbo, etc in the same exact way with very little in common with today's Roman Catholic Theology.

Modern Roman Catholics are all about reductionism. Separating 'depictions' from Doctrine, Traditions from traditions, etc etc. That is because within this kind of reconstruction you would be forced to deal with the contradictions such a move in Theology would create.

I'd recommend that Catholics start rereading the Classics and realize that Post-Vatican II Theology is a departure from what has been taught and thought for one thousand years.

Now you and others may argue that this 'piece' of Classic Theology wasn't 'infallibly' spoken or was only tradition with a small "t".   For me that spin on the reductionism happening within the Roman Catholic Church since Vatican II is such a farce.  It's rationalizing how we 'change the theology of the Roman Catholic Church' without admitting that we are changing the theology of the Roman Catholic Church... and that is weak in my opinion.

For hundreds of years Roman Catholics were taught Purgatory was a 'place and state' and that Limbo was a 'place and state' but in our modern times such certainties have been sidelined to make room for other theological opinions.  I ask, what happened to 'truth'?   I look and I see Catholicism reconstructing itself and pretending that it really isn't because this or that wasn't spoken infallibly or was actually never 'really' part of Tradition but only tradition with a small "t".   I simply can't believe in the Roman Catholic Church because of such nonsense and have simply embraced the Church that Catholicism is attempting to remake itself into... the Holy Orthodox Catholic Church.

Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Irish Hermit on April 01, 2009, 04:11:58 PM

Ah, but the Catholic Church teaches Purgatory is a state not a place and no longer speaks of spending time there.   

This was simply an opinion of Pope John Paul's which he spoke about at two papal lunchtime audiences.

It was then taken up enthusiastically in some Catholic circles.

How's does a Pope's lunchtime opinion jump to become church teaching binding on the faithful? 
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Irish Hermit on April 01, 2009, 04:21:11 PM
[From the Catechism of the Catholic Church

III. THE FINAL PURIFICATION, OR PURGATORY


1032 This teaching is also based on the practice of prayer for the dead, already mentioned in Sacred Scripture: "Therefore [Judas Maccabeus] made atonement for the dead, that they might be delivered from their sin."

The reference to this section in the history of Judas Maccabeus is an important one.   It proves that the West is wrong when it believes that grave sin, mortal sin, cannot be forgiven after death.  The text of Maccabees demonstrates that it can. 

For a fuller explanation see an earlier message  http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,20355.msg304145.html#msg304145
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Pravoslavbob on April 01, 2009, 05:38:33 PM
The catechism is free to use traditional symbolic language to describe purgatory. It does not necessarily mean that there is a literal fire. The word fire here can just as easily mean purification or suffering as it often does in the scriptures. We as Catholics, must believe in a post death purification that invovles suffering. The word "fire" is a good symbol for this suffering.

I see.  So basically you are saying that you are free to interpret it any way you like. 

As for certain lesser faults, we must believe that, before the Final Judgment, there is a purifying fire.

Seems pretty clear to me.  If they wanted to say that it could be interpreted metaphorically, surely they would have made it clearer and used words other than "we must believe..."
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: lubeltri on April 01, 2009, 08:11:40 PM
Irish Hermit, such "temporal satisfaction" is worthless if accomplished alone. It must always be done with Christ. Any good works are worthless without faith.

The purpose of this "temporal satisfaction" is sanctification. That (including purgatory) exist to bring a person to a state of holiness necessary to enter heaven. It's not about God getting his revenge. That sanctification can be very painful is clear---did not Christ say that we must lose our lives to gain them, that we must pick up our crosses?

St. Gregory the Great (who you seem to think held that foreign doctrine of praying people out of hell) wrote of a "purifying fire." Not that the fire is literal (though he likely believed so), but it means that Purgatory (as with any giving up of dearly held attachments) can hurt. Think of Purgatory as like a drug rehab clinic where we are weaned off our addictions.

However, you seem only interested in providing your own faulty spins on our teaching. Honestly, for an Orthodox priest, you seem frequently occupied with Catholicism. You'd think by now you'd have a better understanding of it.

Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: lubeltri on April 01, 2009, 08:11:41 PM
I don't understand the obsession with "fire." If such a word was fine with St. Paul and St. Peter, it is fine with me. The Holy Spirit is frequently identified with fire.

Purgatory can be like a "purifying fire," as Pope St. Gregory the Great says. However, that doesn't mean it has to be a literal fire. Is the Holy Spirit a literal fire?

It makes no sense anyway, since it isn't doctrine that Purgatory is even a place. How do you have literal fire when it isn't even necessarily a place?

St. John of the Cross described the "fires" of Purgatory as simply the love of God. God's love freeing us from our attachments to sin could very well be painful. That's why they are attachments---they are hard to give up.

I have heard a number of Orthodox describe the fires of Hell that way---God's love feels like fire to the damned because of their rejection of Him.

So I don't see why using fire as a metaphor for the purifying state is so risable to you.


Incidentally, I got into a debate about this with some Catholic friends a few weeks ago. They claimed there certainly IS a literal fire and that such has to be believed by all Catholics. I insisted that they were free to believe in a literal fire if they wished, but such a view is opinion, not doctrine. Of course they protested, but they had to admit I was right after they consulted conciliar documents.

So I can understand why Orthodox misunderstand our teaching, since so many Catholics misunderstand it.

It's funny---I debate a lot with these friends, and usually the debates end up me defending Eastern Christianity or the Orthodox! I'm Latin like them, of course, but they have a serious lack of knowledge of the Eastern perspective (and do not seem interested in remedying it!). They seem to think that everybody should just become Latin Catholics. Sigh...they say they love John Paul II, but they won't read Orientale Lumen on my recommendation. Usually the debates end up with them saying that if I like the East so much, I should become Orthodox!
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: lubeltri on April 01, 2009, 08:11:41 PM

As for certain lesser faults, we must believe that, before the Final Judgment, there is a purifying fire.

Seems pretty clear to me.  If they wanted to say that it could be interpreted metaphorically, surely they would have made it clearer and used words other than "we must believe..."

No. That statement is a QUOTATION of St. Gregory the Great. It is not a statement of the authors of the catechism. The authors included the quotation to show the tradition of depicting Purgatory as involving a purifying fire. As for the quotation itself, you can't say with certainty that St. Gregory meant a literal fire.

Now, certainly, a literal fire has been a popular opinion over the centuries. But it has always remained an opinion. If you dispute that, find me a statement in any ecumenical council affirming that a literal fire must be believed. You can't.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: username! on April 01, 2009, 10:33:59 PM

As for certain lesser faults, we must believe that, before the Final Judgment, there is a purifying fire.

Seems pretty clear to me.  If they wanted to say that it could be interpreted metaphorically, surely they would have made it clearer and used words other than "we must believe..."

No. That statement is a QUOTATION of St. Gregory the Great. It is not a statement of the authors of the catechism. The authors included the quotation to show the tradition of depicting Purgatory as involving a purifying fire. As for the quotation itself, you can't say with certainty that St. Gregory meant a literal fire.

Now, certainly, a literal fire has been a popular opinion over the centuries. But it has always remained an opinion. If you dispute that, find me a statement in any ecumenical council affirming that a literal fire must be believed. You can't.

What ecumenical councils are you speaking of?  The 7 true Ecumenical Councils? Or the ones the Roman Catholic Communion has held and falsely called "ecumenical?"
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: stashko on April 02, 2009, 12:45:44 AM
 Catholic Purgatory,,,,,,,(http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/image/0004/promanim3_eit.gif)your gonna  burn burn burn..............
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: John of the North on April 02, 2009, 12:49:23 AM
Catholic Purgatory,,,,,,,(http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/image/0004/promanim3_eit.gif)your gonna  burn burn burn..............

Would it kill you to contribute to the discussion with proper punctuation and ideas?
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: stashko on April 02, 2009, 12:52:51 AM
Ok ! Since there's no time in puratory, how do people get there time shortened there.... ??? ???
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: John of the North on April 02, 2009, 12:57:42 AM
Ok ! Since there's no time in puratory, how do people get there time shortened there.... ??? ???

Are you conceding purgatory exists?
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: stashko on April 02, 2009, 01:15:42 AM
No! Don't believe in it ,Catholics do though...When they pray for the soul's there ,,isn't it suppose to shorten their stay...

Or when the pope gives a indulgence....Why doesn't He use his power's and Grant's them all absolution and just empties the whole place out.....that's if it exists.. and since for them it does.....just curious why doesn't he...
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Irish Hermit on April 02, 2009, 02:44:17 AM
Irish Hermit, such "temporal satisfaction" is worthless if accomplished alone.

The purpose of this "temporal satisfaction"

Never seen the term "temporal satisfaction" before although I have experienced it after a good glass of Guinness on a hot day.   The term I know is "temporal punishment."

Could you say more about Catholic theology and "temporal satisfaction"?  Where did you find the term?
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Irish Hermit on April 02, 2009, 02:47:44 AM
No. That statement is a QUOTATION of St. Gregory the Great. It is not a statement of the authors of the catechism. The authors included the quotation to show the tradition of depicting Purgatory as involving a purifying fire. As for the quotation itself, you can't say with certainty that St. Gregory meant a literal fire.

Now, certainly, a literal fire has been a popular opinion over the centuries. But it has always remained an opinion. If you dispute that, find me a statement in any ecumenical council affirming that a literal fire must be believed. You can't.

Are all the statements in the modern Catechism optional in this way?   People may interpret them literally or metaphorically?
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Irish Hermit on April 02, 2009, 02:51:47 AM
No. That statement is a QUOTATION of St. Gregory the Great. It is not a statement of the authors of the catechism. The authors included the quotation to show the tradition of depicting Purgatory as involving a purifying fire. As for the quotation itself, you can't say with certainty that St. Gregory meant a literal fire.

Now, certainly, a literal fire has been a popular opinion over the centuries. But it has always remained an opinion. If you dispute that, find me a statement in any ecumenical council affirming that a literal fire must be believed. You can't.

All the above is quite a good example of the modern reductionism which has been at work in modern Catholicism for the past 40 decades. 

See this post
http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,20355.msg306110.html#msg306110
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Dan-Romania on April 02, 2009, 03:21:27 AM
I don't understand the obsession with "fire." If such a word was fine with St. Paul and St. Peter, it is fine with me. The Holy Spirit is frequently identified with fire.

Purgatory can be like a "purifying fire," as Pope St. Gregory the Great says. However, that doesn't mean it has to be a literal fire. Is the Holy Spirit a literal fire?

It makes no sense anyway, since it isn't doctrine that Purgatory is even a place. How do you have literal fire when it isn't even necessarily a place?

St. John of the Cross described the "fires" of Purgatory as simply the love of God. God's love freeing us from our attachments to sin could very well be painful. That's why they are attachments---they are hard to give up.

I have heard a number of Orthodox describe the fires of Hell that way---God's love feels like fire to the damned because of their rejection of Him.

So I don't see why using fire as a metaphor for the purifying state is so risable to you.


Incidentally, I got into a debate about this with some Catholic friends a few weeks ago. They claimed there certainly IS a literal fire and that such has to be believed by all Catholics. I insisted that they were free to believe in a literal fire if they wished, but such a view is opinion, not doctrine. Of course they protested, but they had to admit I was right after they consulted conciliar documents.

So I can understand why Orthodox misunderstand our teaching, since so many Catholics misunderstand it.

It's funny---I debate a lot with these friends, and usually the debates end up me defending Eastern Christianity or the Orthodox! I'm Latin like them, of course, but they have a serious lack of knowledge of the Eastern perspective (and do not seem interested in remedying it!). They seem to think that everybody should just become Latin Catholics. Sigh...they say they love John Paul II, but they won't read Orientale Lumen on my recommendation. Usually the debates end up with them saying that if I like the East so much, I should become Orthodox!

The Light wich will be in Heaven will be the Fire in Hell . "Our God is a Consuming Fire" believe me it is both alegorical and literal fire . I advice you to read : Ilie Cleopa - Despre Iad (About Hell) . He talks about the nine works of hell . Here is the link in Romanian , you can translate it with google translate : http://www.sfaturiortodoxe.ro/ortodox/despreiad.htm
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Irish Hermit on April 02, 2009, 03:54:03 AM

St. Gregory the Great (who you seem to think held that foreign doctrine of praying people out of hell)

"Libera animas omnium fidelium defunctorum de poenis inferni et de profundo lacu."

Such a beautiful prayer from the Roman liturgy.

See
http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,20355.msg304197.html#msg304197

Quote
Honestly, for an Orthodox priest, you seem frequently occupied with Catholicism

Do you not see me as your beloved other lung?   How can you breathe without me?     :)
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Papist on April 02, 2009, 10:04:23 AM
The catechism is free to use traditional symbolic language to describe purgatory. It does not necessarily mean that there is a literal fire. The word fire here can just as easily mean purification or suffering as it often does in the scriptures. We as Catholics, must believe in a post death purification that invovles suffering. The word "fire" is a good symbol for this suffering.

I see.  So basically you are saying that you are free to interpret it any way you like. 

As for certain lesser faults, we must believe that, before the Final Judgment, there is a purifying fire.

Seems pretty clear to me.  If they wanted to say that it could be interpreted metaphorically, surely they would have made it clearer and used words other than "we must believe..."
If the adjective "literal" were before the word fire I would be on board with you but it is simply not. I have read the Catechism mulitple times and never had it even occured to me that it must be a literal fire. This is because I have been around Catholic theology all of my adult life and the general understanding is that it is not may not be a literal fire, though that is a popular tradition (lower case t). Why do so many in the East always reject that we believe what we actually say we believe? Its not a charitable attitude.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Papist on April 02, 2009, 10:06:47 AM

As for certain lesser faults, we must believe that, before the Final Judgment, there is a purifying fire.

Seems pretty clear to me.  If they wanted to say that it could be interpreted metaphorically, surely they would have made it clearer and used words other than "we must believe..."

No. That statement is a QUOTATION of St. Gregory the Great. It is not a statement of the authors of the catechism. The authors included the quotation to show the tradition of depicting Purgatory as involving a purifying fire. As for the quotation itself, you can't say with certainty that St. Gregory meant a literal fire.

Now, certainly, a literal fire has been a popular opinion over the centuries. But it has always remained an opinion. If you dispute that, find me a statement in any ecumenical council affirming that a literal fire must be believed. You can't.

What ecumenical councils are you speaking of?  The 7 true Ecumenical Councils? Or the ones the Roman Catholic Communion has held and falsely called "ecumenical?"
That's not even the point of this thread.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Papist on April 02, 2009, 10:08:30 AM
Ok ! Since there's no time in puratory, how do people get there time shortened there.... ??? ???
We don't. Those in purgatory are aided by the prayer of those on earth, but as to what help they recieve, we don't understand completely. It has been popular to speak of "reducing some one's time in purgatory" but I believe that this a popular approach, rather than a true theological one.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Papist on April 02, 2009, 10:10:39 AM
No. That statement is a QUOTATION of St. Gregory the Great. It is not a statement of the authors of the catechism. The authors included the quotation to show the tradition of depicting Purgatory as involving a purifying fire. As for the quotation itself, you can't say with certainty that St. Gregory meant a literal fire.

Now, certainly, a literal fire has been a popular opinion over the centuries. But it has always remained an opinion. If you dispute that, find me a statement in any ecumenical council affirming that a literal fire must be believed. You can't.

Are all the statements in the modern Catechism optional in this way?   People may interpret them literally or metaphorically?
This is ridculous. You need to read more about Catholic theology. Try some of Cardinal Ratzinger's works and not just the ones you would like to use to bash Catholics over the head.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Papist on April 02, 2009, 10:11:44 AM
I don't understand the obsession with "fire." If such a word was fine with St. Paul and St. Peter, it is fine with me. The Holy Spirit is frequently identified with fire.

Purgatory can be like a "purifying fire," as Pope St. Gregory the Great says. However, that doesn't mean it has to be a literal fire. Is the Holy Spirit a literal fire?

It makes no sense anyway, since it isn't doctrine that Purgatory is even a place. How do you have literal fire when it isn't even necessarily a place?

St. John of the Cross described the "fires" of Purgatory as simply the love of God. God's love freeing us from our attachments to sin could very well be painful. That's why they are attachments---they are hard to give up.

I have heard a number of Orthodox describe the fires of Hell that way---God's love feels like fire to the damned because of their rejection of Him.

So I don't see why using fire as a metaphor for the purifying state is so risable to you.


Incidentally, I got into a debate about this with some Catholic friends a few weeks ago. They claimed there certainly IS a literal fire and that such has to be believed by all Catholics. I insisted that they were free to believe in a literal fire if they wished, but such a view is opinion, not doctrine. Of course they protested, but they had to admit I was right after they consulted conciliar documents.

So I can understand why Orthodox misunderstand our teaching, since so many Catholics misunderstand it.

It's funny---I debate a lot with these friends, and usually the debates end up me defending Eastern Christianity or the Orthodox! I'm Latin like them, of course, but they have a serious lack of knowledge of the Eastern perspective (and do not seem interested in remedying it!). They seem to think that everybody should just become Latin Catholics. Sigh...they say they love John Paul II, but they won't read Orientale Lumen on my recommendation. Usually the debates end up with them saying that if I like the East so much, I should become Orthodox!

The Light wich will be in Heaven will be the Fire in Hell . "Our God is a Consuming Fire" believe me it is both alegorical and literal fire . I advice you to read : Ilie Cleopa - Despre Iad (About Hell) . He talks about the nine works of hell . Here is the link in Romanian , you can translate it with google translate : http://www.sfaturiortodoxe.ro/ortodox/despreiad.htm
You believe that God is both literal and figurative fire? I thought God was beyond fire.  ???
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Papist on April 02, 2009, 10:14:06 AM

Do you not see me as your beloved other lung?   How can you breathe without me?     :)
We see the Eastern Catholic Churches as our other lung. But honestly Father, I have observed your posting concerning Catholics for several years, all the back to your good ol' CAF days, and what you may consider "witty" can often been seen as sarcastic, rude, off topic, or simply sophistry.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: lubeltri on April 02, 2009, 10:23:12 AM
No! Don't believe in it ,Catholics do though...When they pray for the soul's there ,,isn't it suppose to shorten their stay...

Or when the pope give a indulgence....Why doesn't He use his power's and Grant's them all absolution  and just empties the whole place out.....that's if it exists....

I've already explained to you numerous times on this forum that indulgences do not "reduce time" in Purgatory. But, of course, you aren't interested in learning what we actually believe. Carry on---I won't be listening.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: AMM on April 02, 2009, 10:26:33 AM
Let me just summarize our take on the middle state of souls:

- We believe in the folk-religionesque demonic tollgates, except for those who completely reject them.
- We believe there is no literal cleansing fire, except for those who believe there is a literal fire.
- We know that what we believe is whatever is the opposite of what is printed in the RCC.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Orthodoc on April 02, 2009, 11:20:37 AM
No! Don't believe in it ,Catholics do though...When they pray for the soul's there ,,isn't it suppose to shorten their stay...

Or when the pope give a indulgence....Why doesn't He use his power's and Grant's them all absolution  and just empties the whole place out.....that's if it exists....

I've already explained to you numerous times on this forum that indulgences do not "reduce time" in Purgatory. But, of course, you aren't interested in learning what we actually believe. Carry on---I won't be listening.

Indulgences & it's changes over time from what looks like a Roman Catholic source -

http://www.hyperhistory.net/apwh/essays/cot/t2w08indulgences.htm

==============

Throughout the late Middle Ages indulgences have influenced the course of history in many respects. Through their introduction and implementation medieval church leaders periodically held sway on emperors and common man alike. Despite their power and often use, indulgences have not always been the same in function or methods of distribution. These changes follow through a pattern of unique, defining events: the Crusades, Pope Leo X, the printing press, Martin Luther, and finally the Council of Trent. Placed within these historical settings the religious influence of indulgences grew to its peak during the Protestant Reformation and then declined and stabilized during the Counter Reformation and the Council of Trent. Yet to fully understand the historical implications of indulgences, we must first understand the surrounding doctrines of the Roman Catholic church and the theology of indulgences themselves.

The Catholic Encyclopedia, a large collection of extended writings by Catholic authorities, shows how sin, purgatory, salvation, and justification all play an important part in the theology of indulgences. Unlike Protestant views, modern Catholics see that the consequences of sin demand us to satisfy two punishments—eternal punishment and temporal punishment. Eternal punishment, spending eternity in hell after death, is paid through the death of Jesus when a man or women converts and is baptized1. On this issue Protestants agree to an extent (except for the fact that some believe that the required punishment is revoked at conversion and not baptism). Catholics, and not Protestants, then explain that while Christ satisfied our payment of eternal punishment, we must fulfill our payment concerning temporal punishment2. This temporal punishment must be paid in one of two places—here on earth or after death in the purifying torture of purgatory prior to entering heaven3.

According to the Catholic Encyclopedia, Catholics believe that the necessary satisfactions of Gods justice can be obtained through Sacraments and Indulgences. They believe that through the Sacrament of Baptism both temporal punishments and eternal punishments are satisfied for a new convert4. Yet they also believe that if a Christian then sins sometime between Baptism and death, he must then take part in the Sacrament of Penance to remove his guilt or, in some cases, his eternal punishment5. Furthermore, he must either obtain an indulgence, which takes away his temporal punishment, or pay for this temporal punishment in purgatory6. Indulgences also come in varying degrees, removing various amounts of time in purgatory. A partial indulgence takes away part of the time in purgatory while a plenary indulgence takes away all the time that one must stay in purgatory for sins previously committed7. It is also important to note that indulgences were not always bought with money; sometimes they were obtained through certain works or actions.

Indulgences did not always exist as our modern understanding envisions them. In fact, according to Fr. Enrico dal Covolo, the contemporary idea of indulgences in our time and the time of the Reformation did not begin until the 11th century8. Fr. Covolo continues to explain that their evolution was a long process through various earlier forms of “reconciliation; mitigation, reduction and commutation of sacramental penance”—all of which granted to some extent either remission of punishment or a renewed relationship with the church society. Furthermore, they were not necessarily bought with money or extended to anyone who fulfilled certain requirements. Through these theologies indulgences slowly evolved with their first great influence revealing itself through the crusades9.

During Christendom’s struggle with the Seljuk and Ottoman Turks in the eleventh century through the fifteenth century, several Catholic Popes called for crusades against the expansion of these powerful Islamic empires. Fr. Covolo states that Pope Urban II (in the first crusade) and Pope Eugene III (in the second crusade) offered indulgences to anyone who would join their struggle against the Muslims10. He further explains that Pope Gregory VIII later took this example one step further. Gregory VIII offered plenary indulgences (one that paid for all sins previously committed but not for the future) to anyone who simply “provided someone to take their place or who contributed to the expense of the crusade11.” The people who obtained these indulgences did not even have to go to war themselves. They could simply buy their way out of purgatory.

In the sixteenth century Pope Leo X perverted the theology of indulgences to the greatest extent in history—turning a religious doctrine into no more than a money making scheme. Christian History Institute explains how after draining the Vatican treasury, Pope Leo X planned on continuing to rebuild St. Peter’s Basilica yet lacked the necessary funds to do so12. It goes on to explain how Leo X sent the legendary Tetzel, a Dominican monk, to sell indulgences to fund his project. This particular set of indulgences state that even the sins that the buyer would later commit would be justified in the eyes of God:
…I restore you… to the innocence and purity which you possessed at baptism; so that when you die the gates of punishment shall be shut… and if you shall not die at present, this grace shall remain in full force when you are at the point of death.
Tetzel also shows his disregard for the theological importance of indulgences as Christian History Institute quotes him using little jingles to sell them: As soon as the coin in the coffer rings, the soul from purgatory springs13. These events set the stage for Martin Luther’s dispute with the Catholic church and the imminent Protestant Reformation.
Before the discussion of the Protestant Reformation it would benefit us to first look at the impact of Guttenberg’s printing press on the distribution of indulgences and the dissemination of Luther’s writings. While indulgences had to be written by hand prior to the invention of the printing press, following its invention, indulgences could be printed in mass. In 1454 Pope Nicholas V took advantage of this new opportunity to print indulgences, offering them to anyone who donated money towards his crusade14. Yet the printing press also enabled Martin Luther to disseminate his ideas15 and with them his question regarding the validity of indulgences. This question and his revolutionary ideas would eventually tear apart the unity of the Catholic church.
Martin Luther began as a monk within the Catholic church, but slowly realized the atrocities that it was committing through the practice of indulgences. This came about slowly as he realized the importance of Paul’s epistle to the Romans. The Christian History Institute quotes him as saying:
My situation was that, although an impeccable monk, I stood before God as a sinner troubled in conscience, and I had no confidence that my merit would assuage him. Night and day I pondered until I saw the connection between the justice of God and the statement 'the just shall live by faith.' Then I grasped that the justice of God is that righteousness by which through grace and sheer mercy God justifies us through faith. Thereupon I felt myself to be reborn and to have gone through open doors into paradise. The whole of Scripture took on a new meaning...This passage of Paul became to me a gate to heaven.
Christian History Institute, Luther Posted his 95 Thesis16
Following this discovery in the Bible, Luther abhorred the work of people like Tetzel17 and humbly tried to show the Catholic church its error in the use of indulgences. He posted his ninety-five thesis on the Wittenberg door, presenting for debate his revolutionary ideas. Christian History Institute expresses that Luther assumed that the Pope would agree with him when shown that he based his argument off of scripture. Yet the Pope did not agree. Instead he excommunicated Martin Luther. Skip Knox writes that upon receiving this decree of excommunication, Luther “invited his friends” and burned it publicly18. The Reformation had begun.
Luther’s reformation and the wanton greed of Leo X in his sale of indulgences prompted the Catholic church to consider where it stood concerning these theological matters. Robert D. Linder states that an ecumenical church council was called to deal with “reform and the growing menace of Protestantism19.” He goes on to say that while Protestants were allowed to attend the second gathering, they were not allowed to vote and so they left without having impacted the council. The third session influenced the history of Christianity the most20. Through this session, Linder states, that the council reaffirmed the medieval beliefs of “salvation by faith and works… the existence of purgatory, and indulgences”, yet “the post of indulgence-seller was abolished and abuses connected with the distribution of indulgences were condemned.”21 These decisions were pivotal in establishing a theological cornerstone to support the argument for indulgences into the present day.
As we can see, indulgences played an important role in the political and religious history of the Middle ages. Through them wars were waged between the Turkish powers and the Western world, and the Protestant Reformation began. Yet they were not always the same in function, nor were they distributed in identical ways. Indulgences developed from a variety of traditions, evolving into a form that spawned the Protestant Reformation. In response to this reformation and the greed of Leo X, the Council of Trent further modified them closer to their modern form. Fr. Covolo states, “the Council of Trent, after the sad Lutheran schism, suppressed for ever the collecting of money for indulgences.”22 Popes, monks, councils, inventions, wars, and Reformations all influenced the change of indulgences throughout history—a history that has almost stretched a millennium. Through all the upheavals of history and all the various modifications on form, indulgences have survived to the present day. As recently as 1967 Pope Paul VI reaffirmed the decree of the Council of Trent: “The doctrine and practice of indulgences which have been in force for many centuries in the Catholic Church have a solid foundation in divine revelation…”23

==============

Orthodoc




Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Orthodoc on April 02, 2009, 11:31:55 AM

I saved this post in my files from a few years ago.  It's an answer given on a discussion group on the Orthodox view on Purgatory.  I like it because it's the only answer I received that I could fully understand and agreee wit.  It comes from a convert to Orthodoxy who was a former Protestant minister. 

Would appreciate any comments on it.  Especially some of the Orthodox priests that post here.

Orthodoc

================QUESTION: 

 
<<In  'The Complete Book of Orthodoxy' by George W. Grube the following
sentence appears within the explaination of PURGATORY -

"If there is, any suffering in the after life, some Orthodox Catholic
theologians teach, it is of a purifying nature and not punitive."

I find this to be confusing because, isn't this exactly what the Roman
Catholic teaches in regards to Purgatory?  Can someone explain this sentence
and its meaning from an Orthodox Catholic viewpoint?

Bob>>

ANSWER:  (by Reader Tmothy Copple)

Some have already responded to this, and I have not looked at all of today's
post, so if this subject has died out and I am behind the times here, or all
of this has already been said, please excuse me.

Out of the post I have read, it seems there is some confusion about this
issue. So, I will try to give the general differences between RC purgatory
and Orthodox understanding of the soul's purification in the next life.
There are similarities and differences.

First, one must stop and think what the word "punishment" really means. It
is essentially, a corrective measure that is used upon someone for their
ultimate benefit. Originally, the concept of "punishment" had a very
redemptive and healing aspect to it. However, as it tends to be used today
(at least in theological talk), it tends to refer to arbitrary dishing out
of misery, often to "pay back" some wrong or injustice. We see this in our
own laws, one can see a paying back and a hope of it bringing healing when
we send someone to jail. In strict law sense, however, I think the intent is
to ultimate reform the person, or at least keep them out of society so that
they do not harm others. Revenge is more the emotional side of it from the
victim's standpoint.

Due to the above, the concept of punishment has taken on more of a "paying
back" or retribution, and is then a word that people who focus on the
healing aspect like to stay away from. This probably comes from the concept
of satisfaction atonement, where the whole idea of Jesus dying on the cross
was to pay back to the Father a debt of sin that we could not. That is also
why the RC idea sounds so much like they are saying (to a Protestant) that
Christ's forgiveness wasn't good enough, since it didn't entirely pay the
debt, that we by suffering punishment still had something left to pay off
for our sins. Thus, while the RC held to some degree of the satisfaction
theory, and while that did predominate at certain times, they still had the
context of healing, even if it was buried at times and forgotten. The
understanding of "punishment" can be interpreted in either direction.
However, I would tend to stay away from it now if just because its common
connotation does not lend itself to really expressing the reality of what we
believe, and will automatically put forth a picture of God that is
incompatible with Orthodoxy's.

That said, Orthodoxy does understand a purifying to take place in the next
life, which St. Paul also speaks about (and RC uses to support Purgatory as
well), that all our works will be put through the fire, the stone, gold,
etc. will remain while all that is of hay, straw, etc. will be burned away.
Even if it is all burned away, however, if the foundation which has been
laid is Jesus Christ, that person will be saved as through the fire.

Since this is scripture, and the Fathers also speak about the purifying of
the soul in this life and the next, this is something we cannot just toss
aside. However, there are some significant differences between what I have
understood of the RC's concept and Orthodoxy's on this purifying in the next
life.

One of the biggest differences is when this purifying takes place, and the
purpose and reason of the purifying. RC teaches that one must be purified
*before* approaching God. Orthodoxy tends to teach that one is purified
*upon* approaching God.

First, one must understand the need for purification. Keep in mind that this
is a journey. Our movement is towards the likeness of God being instilled in
our life and a growing relationship with Him. The closer we move towards
God-likeness, it basically means the less of this temporal world that we
hold onto and the more of the Spirit that we have. (Read St. Seraphim of
Sarov on acquiring the Holy Spirit as an example of this.) Some folks have
attained to the angelic life in this life. My own patron saint, the Apostle
Timothy, disciple of St. Paul, was said to have been such a person.
Incidentally he was martyred for preaching against the pagan worship in
Ephesus, where he was a bishop of the Church. A mob came and beat him with
stones and clubs. Anyway, most of us will not get there in this life time.
We hold onto too much of this world's treasures. We don't go and "sell all
that we have" to follow Christ. Thus our sins build hay and straw structures
in our lives. We are forgiven for the sins through repentance and
confession, and the relationship to God is kept whole, but we still have
that straw hut over there that we have a hard time tearing down and building
it with something of the virtues. We struggle with that in many areas. We
wish to build things in our lives with our passions instead of the virtues.

Thus, what happens for many is they leave this life with some of our life
built out of gold, silver and other sturdy materials, but we also have some
of our life built out of the straw and hay. What we are doing on this
journey is working on tearing down the straw and hay structures and
replacing them with the stones of virtues.

The need is the same in either communion, that these areas of our life built
by the passions cannot remain in the presence of God. However, the solution
to how those are dealt with varies. RC says that they must be burned away
before entering God's presence. Therefore, there is a place, or time, or
some existence that one has that one goes through this fire and is purified
of these things. Naturally this is not going to be pleasant and does feel
like a "punishment" even though it is for our benefit. When I got punished
as a child for playing in the street, it was to protect my life, not to
cause me pain for the heck of it. Yet, the concept here is that God's
holiness cannot allow any impurity and will automatically be rejected.
Therefore, if one comes into God's presence with some impurity, the idea is
that person will be rejected except that the impurity is cleansed
beforehand.

In Orthodoxy, God is understood as an "All Consuming Fire" that we are
either lighted with or heated by. This fiery presence is in Orthodoxy what
purifies us. Upon coming to God, His very presence burns away all
impurities. All that remains will be the gold, silver and other virtues of
our life, and at that point we will be freed from all that once weighted us
down in this life, and freed to ascend in greater ways to God. For those who
have progressed far with eradicating the passions from their lives and have
attained a great God-likeness through the Spirit, there will be little to
burn away, if any, and their transition into God's presence will be fully
like the three holy Children in Daniel, who when the king threw them into
the furnace heated 7 times greater than normal, all experienced it as a
"dewy cool breeze" instead of a burning fire. There will be many, however,
that will experience this entry to God's presence with some pain and
suffering. Not due to God inflicting punishment on them, but due to the
reaction of bringing impurity into God's holiness. The two cannot mix. It is
like mixing two chemicals together that produce an explosion. Neither
chemical "caused" it to happen, it simply happened by bringing them
together. Thus it will be with the consequences of sin in our lives that we
have yet to clean out in this life, it will get cleaned out in the next for
us.

Therefore, there are two different understandings at work here, one which
says that we cannot come into God's presence without being purified first
because God will reject us as a person otherwise, and one which says that in
coming into His presence, He doesn't reject all those in Christ, but He does
"reject" and burns away all that is incompatible with His presence in us.
Yet, if we have Christ, we hold onto that relationship and the burning is
only temporary (whatever temporary means there), whereas those who do not
have Christ, upon coming into God's presence, experience the second death,
total and unending fire of His presence. That is "hell".

The next difference comes in our prayers for these people. Somehow over time
the RC concept mutated from what we understand as Orthodox to this whole
system of merits and the applying them from one to another. Initially, the
understanding of "merits" simply meant that a particular saint who was close
to God due to their humility and love of God in their life, who had
eradicated much of the passions and established the virtues, had by that
reason acquired the life that has faith which can move mountains. This is of
God's doing, not the saints, and the saint continually keeps this in mind if
he/she does not with to fall. However, Christ says we will be able to do
that, and like the demon that the disciples could not cast out because they
had not fasted and prayed as they should have, one's acquiring the Holy
Spirit in humility does have something to do with how well one is able to
help others with a gift God has given them, whether that is healing,
hospitality, etc. Thus, there are some that have more "merit" in their lives
than others. Doesn't mean one has earned salvation, but simply that one has
acquired a certain relationship with God which allows them to transmit to us
more of God's mercy and grace within our lives. That is why we ask people to
pray for us, in hopes that they have a relationship with God that will aid
us. So one sees the Fathers speaking of merits at times, and some current
Orthodoxy material will also speak of them as well.

However, somehow in the RC circles, this grew into some sort of "thing" that
one can almost measure. So if one did such and such a thing, it would give
them X number of merits from a saints abundant storehouse of merits (he/she
had more than they needed for themselves). I think one can find examples
where this has gone to extremes such as the selling of them (as if the
Church owned them), and the more legalistic "pray this prayer and get 2000
merits" which I read something similar to that in some Catholic literature
once.

In Orthodox understanding, such prayers and gifts of the saints cannot be
moved around like that, nor can you store up a saints merits for when you
get to "purgatory" yourself. All that a saint can help you with in that
regard is to pray for you and help guide you to acquiring the "merits" for
yourself so that when you get to God, you will experience the least amount
of burning possible. Nor are they quantified as something measurable. Yet,
we deem the prayers of the saints as powerful and a great help in time of
need, and they work towards our salvation and redemption of our whole life.
Consequently, Orthodoxy has never built us such a system of merits as the RC
has.

Those are the two main differences between our views of this purifying in
the next life as I have understood things. May others correct my mistakes.
Perhaps there are others, but my post has gone on long enough as it is.

======

Orthodoc
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: username! on April 02, 2009, 03:33:36 PM

As for certain lesser faults, we must believe that, before the Final Judgment, there is a purifying fire.

Seems pretty clear to me.  If they wanted to say that it could be interpreted metaphorically, surely they would have made it clearer and used words other than "we must believe..."

No. That statement is a QUOTATION of St. Gregory the Great. It is not a statement of the authors of the catechism. The authors included the quotation to show the tradition of depicting Purgatory as involving a purifying fire. As for the quotation itself, you can't say with certainty that St. Gregory meant a literal fire.

Now, certainly, a literal fire has been a popular opinion over the centuries. But it has always remained an opinion. If you dispute that, find me a statement in any ecumenical council affirming that a literal fire must be believed. You can't.

What ecumenical councils are you speaking of?  The 7 true Ecumenical Councils? Or the ones the Roman Catholic Communion has held and falsely called "ecumenical?"

That's not even the point of this thread.

um he did give the call to find something in an ecumenical council about this, just was asking what ones he was thinking of so someone looking could expand or narrow their search.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Papist on April 02, 2009, 03:42:32 PM

As for certain lesser faults, we must believe that, before the Final Judgment, there is a purifying fire.

Seems pretty clear to me.  If they wanted to say that it could be interpreted metaphorically, surely they would have made it clearer and used words other than "we must believe..."

No. That statement is a QUOTATION of St. Gregory the Great. It is not a statement of the authors of the catechism. The authors included the quotation to show the tradition of depicting Purgatory as involving a purifying fire. As for the quotation itself, you can't say with certainty that St. Gregory meant a literal fire.

Now, certainly, a literal fire has been a popular opinion over the centuries. But it has always remained an opinion. If you dispute that, find me a statement in any ecumenical council affirming that a literal fire must be believed. You can't.

What ecumenical councils are you speaking of?  The 7 true Ecumenical Councils? Or the ones the Roman Catholic Communion has held and falsely called "ecumenical?"

That's not even the point of this thread.

um he did give the call to find something in an ecumenical council about this, just was asking what ones he was thinking of so someone looking could expand or narrow their search.
It's the way you asked. You didn't need to be rude about it.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Papist on April 02, 2009, 03:43:45 PM

I saved this post in my files from a few years ago.  It's an answer given on a discussion group on the Orthodox view on Purgatory.  I like it because it's the only answer I received that I could fully understand and agreee wit.  It comes from a convert to Orthodoxy who was a former Protestant minister. 

Would appreciate any comments on it.  Especially some of the Orthodox priests that post here.

Orthodoc

================QUESTION: 

 
<<In  'The Complete Book of Orthodoxy' by George W. Grube the following
sentence appears within the explaination of PURGATORY -

"If there is, any suffering in the after life, some Orthodox Catholic
theologians teach, it is of a purifying nature and not punitive."

I find this to be confusing because, isn't this exactly what the Roman
Catholic teaches in regards to Purgatory?  Can someone explain this sentence
and its meaning from an Orthodox Catholic viewpoint?

Bob>>

ANSWER:  (by Reader Tmothy Copple)

Some have already responded to this, and I have not looked at all of today's
post, so if this subject has died out and I am behind the times here, or all
of this has already been said, please excuse me.

Out of the post I have read, it seems there is some confusion about this
issue. So, I will try to give the general differences between RC purgatory
and Orthodox understanding of the soul's purification in the next life.
There are similarities and differences.

First, one must stop and think what the word "punishment" really means. It
is essentially, a corrective measure that is used upon someone for their
ultimate benefit. Originally, the concept of "punishment" had a very
redemptive and healing aspect to it. However, as it tends to be used today
(at least in theological talk), it tends to refer to arbitrary dishing out
of misery, often to "pay back" some wrong or injustice. We see this in our
own laws, one can see a paying back and a hope of it bringing healing when
we send someone to jail. In strict law sense, however, I think the intent is
to ultimate reform the person, or at least keep them out of society so that
they do not harm others. Revenge is more the emotional side of it from the
victim's standpoint.

Due to the above, the concept of punishment has taken on more of a "paying
back" or retribution, and is then a word that people who focus on the
healing aspect like to stay away from. This probably comes from the concept
of satisfaction atonement, where the whole idea of Jesus dying on the cross
was to pay back to the Father a debt of sin that we could not. That is also
why the RC idea sounds so much like they are saying (to a Protestant) that
Christ's forgiveness wasn't good enough, since it didn't entirely pay the
debt, that we by suffering punishment still had something left to pay off
for our sins. Thus, while the RC held to some degree of the satisfaction
theory, and while that did predominate at certain times, they still had the
context of healing, even if it was buried at times and forgotten. The
understanding of "punishment" can be interpreted in either direction.
However, I would tend to stay away from it now if just because its common
connotation does not lend itself to really expressing the reality of what we
believe, and will automatically put forth a picture of God that is
incompatible with Orthodoxy's.

That said, Orthodoxy does understand a purifying to take place in the next
life, which St. Paul also speaks about (and RC uses to support Purgatory as
well), that all our works will be put through the fire, the stone, gold,
etc. will remain while all that is of hay, straw, etc. will be burned away.
Even if it is all burned away, however, if the foundation which has been
laid is Jesus Christ, that person will be saved as through the fire.

Since this is scripture, and the Fathers also speak about the purifying of
the soul in this life and the next, this is something we cannot just toss
aside. However, there are some significant differences between what I have
understood of the RC's concept and Orthodoxy's on this purifying in the next
life.

One of the biggest differences is when this purifying takes place, and the
purpose and reason of the purifying. RC teaches that one must be purified
*before* approaching God. Orthodoxy tends to teach that one is purified
*upon* approaching God.

First, one must understand the need for purification. Keep in mind that this
is a journey. Our movement is towards the likeness of God being instilled in
our life and a growing relationship with Him. The closer we move towards
God-likeness, it basically means the less of this temporal world that we
hold onto and the more of the Spirit that we have. (Read St. Seraphim of
Sarov on acquiring the Holy Spirit as an example of this.) Some folks have
attained to the angelic life in this life. My own patron saint, the Apostle
Timothy, disciple of St. Paul, was said to have been such a person.
Incidentally he was martyred for preaching against the pagan worship in
Ephesus, where he was a bishop of the Church. A mob came and beat him with
stones and clubs. Anyway, most of us will not get there in this life time.
We hold onto too much of this world's treasures. We don't go and "sell all
that we have" to follow Christ. Thus our sins build hay and straw structures
in our lives. We are forgiven for the sins through repentance and
confession, and the relationship to God is kept whole, but we still have
that straw hut over there that we have a hard time tearing down and building
it with something of the virtues. We struggle with that in many areas. We
wish to build things in our lives with our passions instead of the virtues.

Thus, what happens for many is they leave this life with some of our life
built out of gold, silver and other sturdy materials, but we also have some
of our life built out of the straw and hay. What we are doing on this
journey is working on tearing down the straw and hay structures and
replacing them with the stones of virtues.

The need is the same in either communion, that these areas of our life built
by the passions cannot remain in the presence of God. However, the solution
to how those are dealt with varies. RC says that they must be burned away
before entering God's presence. Therefore, there is a place, or time, or
some existence that one has that one goes through this fire and is purified
of these things. Naturally this is not going to be pleasant and does feel
like a "punishment" even though it is for our benefit. When I got punished
as a child for playing in the street, it was to protect my life, not to
cause me pain for the heck of it. Yet, the concept here is that God's
holiness cannot allow any impurity and will automatically be rejected.
Therefore, if one comes into God's presence with some impurity, the idea is
that person will be rejected except that the impurity is cleansed
beforehand.

In Orthodoxy, God is understood as an "All Consuming Fire" that we are
either lighted with or heated by. This fiery presence is in Orthodoxy what
purifies us. Upon coming to God, His very presence burns away all
impurities. All that remains will be the gold, silver and other virtues of
our life, and at that point we will be freed from all that once weighted us
down in this life, and freed to ascend in greater ways to God. For those who
have progressed far with eradicating the passions from their lives and have
attained a great God-likeness through the Spirit, there will be little to
burn away, if any, and their transition into God's presence will be fully
like the three holy Children in Daniel, who when the king threw them into
the furnace heated 7 times greater than normal, all experienced it as a
"dewy cool breeze" instead of a burning fire. There will be many, however,
that will experience this entry to God's presence with some pain and
suffering. Not due to God inflicting punishment on them, but due to the
reaction of bringing impurity into God's holiness. The two cannot mix. It is
like mixing two chemicals together that produce an explosion. Neither
chemical "caused" it to happen, it simply happened by bringing them
together. Thus it will be with the consequences of sin in our lives that we
have yet to clean out in this life, it will get cleaned out in the next for
us.

Therefore, there are two different understandings at work here, one which
says that we cannot come into God's presence without being purified first
because God will reject us as a person otherwise, and one which says that in
coming into His presence, He doesn't reject all those in Christ, but He does
"reject" and burns away all that is incompatible with His presence in us.
Yet, if we have Christ, we hold onto that relationship and the burning is
only temporary (whatever temporary means there), whereas those who do not
have Christ, upon coming into God's presence, experience the second death,
total and unending fire of His presence. That is "hell".

The next difference comes in our prayers for these people. Somehow over time
the RC concept mutated from what we understand as Orthodox to this whole
system of merits and the applying them from one to another. Initially, the
understanding of "merits" simply meant that a particular saint who was close
to God due to their humility and love of God in their life, who had
eradicated much of the passions and established the virtues, had by that
reason acquired the life that has faith which can move mountains. This is of
God's doing, not the saints, and the saint continually keeps this in mind if
he/she does not with to fall. However, Christ says we will be able to do
that, and like the demon that the disciples could not cast out because they
had not fasted and prayed as they should have, one's acquiring the Holy
Spirit in humility does have something to do with how well one is able to
help others with a gift God has given them, whether that is healing,
hospitality, etc. Thus, there are some that have more "merit" in their lives
than others. Doesn't mean one has earned salvation, but simply that one has
acquired a certain relationship with God which allows them to transmit to us
more of God's mercy and grace within our lives. That is why we ask people to
pray for us, in hopes that they have a relationship with God that will aid
us. So one sees the Fathers speaking of merits at times, and some current
Orthodoxy material will also speak of them as well.

However, somehow in the RC circles, this grew into some sort of "thing" that
one can almost measure. So if one did such and such a thing, it would give
them X number of merits from a saints abundant storehouse of merits (he/she
had more than they needed for themselves). I think one can find examples
where this has gone to extremes such as the selling of them (as if the
Church owned them), and the more legalistic "pray this prayer and get 2000
merits" which I read something similar to that in some Catholic literature
once.

In Orthodox understanding, such prayers and gifts of the saints cannot be
moved around like that, nor can you store up a saints merits for when you
get to "purgatory" yourself. All that a saint can help you with in that
regard is to pray for you and help guide you to acquiring the "merits" for
yourself so that when you get to God, you will experience the least amount
of burning possible. Nor are they quantified as something measurable. Yet,
we deem the prayers of the saints as powerful and a great help in time of
need, and they work towards our salvation and redemption of our whole life.
Consequently, Orthodoxy has never built us such a system of merits as the RC
has.

Those are the two main differences between our views of this purifying in
the next life as I have understood things. May others correct my mistakes.
Perhaps there are others, but my post has gone on long enough as it is.

======

Orthodoc

Its a pretty good description. But you should know that many Catholic theologians refer to purgatory as nothing more than the fire of God's love and purification.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: lubeltri on April 02, 2009, 04:26:33 PM
Its a pretty good description. But you should know that many Catholic theologians refer to purgatory as nothing more than the fire of God's love and purification.

Not least of all, St. John of the Cross.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: lubeltri on April 02, 2009, 05:36:03 PM
It's the way you asked. You didn't need to be rude about it.

If you notice, he did not bother to answer my question: Find me any ecumenical council (as defined by the Catholic Church) which states that a literal fire must be believed.

Here's a selection from the Catholic Encyclopedia:

Purgatorial fire

At the Council of Florence, Bessarion argued against the existence of real purgatorial fire, and the Greeks were assured that the Roman Church had never issued any dogmatic decree on this subject. In the West the belief in the existence of real fire is common. Augustine (Enarration on Psalm 37, no. 3) speaks of the pain which purgatorial fire causes as more severe than anything a man can suffer in this life, "gravior erit ignis quam quidquid potest homo pati in hac vita" (P.L., col. 397). Gregory the Great speaks of those who after this life "will expiate their faults by purgatorial flames," and he adds "that the pain be more intolerable than any one can suffer in this life" (Ps. 3 poenit., n. 1). Following in the footsteps of Gregory, St. Thomas teaches (IV, dist. xxi, q. i, a.1) that besides the separation of the soul from the sight of God, there is the other punishment from fire. "Una poena damni, in quantum scilicet retardantur a divina visione; alia sensus secundum quod ab igne punientur", and St. Bonaventure not only agrees with St. Thomas but adds (IV, dist. xx, p.1, a.1, q. ii) that this punishment by fire is more severe than any punishment which comes to men in this life; "Gravior est omni temporali poena. quam modo sustinet anima carni conjuncta". How this fire affects the souls of the departed the Doctors do not know, and in such matters it is well to heed the warning of the Council of Trent when it commands the bishops "to exclude from their preaching difficult and subtle questions which tend not to edification', and from the discussion of which there is no increase either in piety or devotion" (Sess. XXV, "De Purgatorio").


http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/12575a.htm
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: lubeltri on April 02, 2009, 05:36:03 PM
Of course, Bessarion was severely punished for publicly arguing against the existence of Purgatorial fire. The Pope made him Cardinal, and he later became Dean of the College of Cardinals.  :)
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: username! on April 02, 2009, 08:07:27 PM

As for certain lesser faults, we must believe that, before the Final Judgment, there is a purifying fire.

Seems pretty clear to me.  If they wanted to say that it could be interpreted metaphorically, surely they would have made it clearer and used words other than "we must believe..."

No. That statement is a QUOTATION of St. Gregory the Great. It is not a statement of the authors of the catechism. The authors included the quotation to show the tradition of depicting Purgatory as involving a purifying fire. As for the quotation itself, you can't say with certainty that St. Gregory meant a literal fire.

Now, certainly, a literal fire has been a popular opinion over the centuries. But it has always remained an opinion. If you dispute that, find me a statement in any ecumenical council affirming that a literal fire must be believed. You can't.

What ecumenical councils are you speaking of?  The 7 true Ecumenical Councils? Or the ones the Roman Catholic Communion has held and falsely called "ecumenical?"

That's not even the point of this thread.

um he did give the call to find something in an ecumenical council about this, just was asking what ones he was thinking of so someone looking could expand or narrow their search.
It's the way you asked. You didn't need to be rude about it.

That's too bad,  pardon me for stating an Orthodox position on an Orthodox forum. 
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Irish Hermit on April 02, 2009, 08:19:45 PM

If you notice, he did not bother to answer my question: Find me any ecumenical council (as defined by the Catholic Church) which states that a literal fire must be believed.

Maybe because the request does not make sense to an Orthodox person.  We live within the faith which has been handed down to us, within our Tradition.   Not all of that has received formulation at an Ecumenical Council.  Much of it hasn't.


To give you examples - there is no Ecumenical Council teaching on the Eucharistic Presence, nor on the Dormition and Assumption of the Mother of God.  And we don't even have a conciliar definition of the Church!    But we have managed very nicely through the centuries and Pope Benedict has been so kind as to say that (apart from our obstinacy about his supremacy) we have every doctrinal teaching present and correct.

Your position of, "Give me an Ecumenical Council or I will not believe" is an attack on Tradition.  What should we say of the faith of the second century? Could people deny the Real Presence, the divinity of Christ, the perpetual virginity of the Mother of God  - because of the lack of a definition from an Ecumenical Council?

Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: username! on April 02, 2009, 08:25:08 PM
It's the way you asked. You didn't need to be rude about it.

If you notice, he did not bother to answer my question: Find me any ecumenical council (as defined by the Catholic Church) which states that a literal fire must be believed.


  Irish Hermit pretty much summarizes why none of us could answer that in light of the way you posed the question.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Veniamin on April 02, 2009, 08:31:21 PM
Would it kill you to contribute to the discussion with proper punctuation and ideas?

Probably.  Shall we start a pool?
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: AMM on April 02, 2009, 08:33:58 PM
I say he's dead after two commas and one semicolon.  $5 cash money.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Jetavan on April 02, 2009, 10:18:47 PM
I say he's dead after two commas and one semicolon.  $5 cash money.

Is that Australian or U.S. dollars?
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Papist on April 02, 2009, 10:31:04 PM

As for certain lesser faults, we must believe that, before the Final Judgment, there is a purifying fire.

Seems pretty clear to me.  If they wanted to say that it could be interpreted metaphorically, surely they would have made it clearer and used words other than "we must believe..."

No. That statement is a QUOTATION of St. Gregory the Great. It is not a statement of the authors of the catechism. The authors included the quotation to show the tradition of depicting Purgatory as involving a purifying fire. As for the quotation itself, you can't say with certainty that St. Gregory meant a literal fire.

Now, certainly, a literal fire has been a popular opinion over the centuries. But it has always remained an opinion. If you dispute that, find me a statement in any ecumenical council affirming that a literal fire must be believed. You can't.

What ecumenical councils are you speaking of?  The 7 true Ecumenical Councils? Or the ones the Roman Catholic Communion has held and falsely called "ecumenical?"

That's not even the point of this thread.

um he did give the call to find something in an ecumenical council about this, just was asking what ones he was thinking of so someone looking could expand or narrow their search.
It's the way you asked. You didn't need to be rude about it.

That's too bad,  pardon me for stating an Orthodox position on an Orthodox forum. 
Its not the Eastern Orthodox position that's the problem. Its your delivery.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Papist on April 02, 2009, 10:32:00 PM

If you notice, he did not bother to answer my question: Find me any ecumenical council (as defined by the Catholic Church) which states that a literal fire must be believed.

Maybe because the request does not make sense to an Orthodox person.  We live within the faith which has been handed down to us, within our Tradition.   Not all of that has received formulation at an Ecumenical Council.  Much of it hasn't.


To give you examples - there is no Ecumenical Council teaching on the Eucharistic Presence, nor on the Dormition and Assumption of the Mother of God.  And we don't even have a conciliar definition of the Church!    But we have managed very nicely through the centuries and Pope Benedict has been so kind as to say that (apart from our obstinacy about his supremacy) we have every doctrinal teaching present and correct.

Your position of, "Give me an Ecumenical Council or I will not believe" is an attack on Tradition.  What should we say of the faith of the second century? Could people deny the Real Presence, the divinity of Christ, the perpetual virginity of the Mother of God  - because of the lack of a definition from an Ecumenical Council?


Then why do so many Eastern Orthodox assert that they only believe in what is taught by the "seven ecumenical councils"?
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Entscheidungsproblem on April 02, 2009, 10:36:38 PM
Let's move a discussion like that into a new thread, okay?

This thread has started to veer, let us try and get it back on topic.

-- Nebelpfade
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Irish Hermit on April 02, 2009, 10:40:12 PM

If you notice, he did not bother to answer my question: Find me any ecumenical council (as defined by the Catholic Church) which states that a literal fire must be believed.

Maybe because the request does not make sense to an Orthodox person.  We live within the faith which has been handed down to us, within our Tradition.   Not all of that has received formulation at an Ecumenical Council.  Much of it hasn't.


To give you examples - there is no Ecumenical Council teaching on the Eucharistic Presence, nor on the Dormition and Assumption of the Mother of God.  And we don't even have a conciliar definition of the Church!    But we have managed very nicely through the centuries and Pope Benedict has been so kind as to say that (apart from our obstinacy about his supremacy) we have every doctrinal teaching present and correct.

Your position of, "Give me an Ecumenical Council or I will not believe" is an attack on Tradition.  What should we say of the faith of the second century? Could people deny the Real Presence, the divinity of Christ, the perpetual virginity of the Mother of God  - because of the lack of a definition from an Ecumenical Council?


Then why do so many Eastern Orthodox assert that they only believe in what is taught by the "seven ecumenical councils"?

Beats me.  I have never met any.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Papist on April 02, 2009, 11:32:30 PM

If you notice, he did not bother to answer my question: Find me any ecumenical council (as defined by the Catholic Church) which states that a literal fire must be believed.

Maybe because the request does not make sense to an Orthodox person.  We live within the faith which has been handed down to us, within our Tradition.   Not all of that has received formulation at an Ecumenical Council.  Much of it hasn't.


To give you examples - there is no Ecumenical Council teaching on the Eucharistic Presence, nor on the Dormition and Assumption of the Mother of God.  And we don't even have a conciliar definition of the Church!    But we have managed very nicely through the centuries and Pope Benedict has been so kind as to say that (apart from our obstinacy about his supremacy) we have every doctrinal teaching present and correct.

Your position of, "Give me an Ecumenical Council or I will not believe" is an attack on Tradition.  What should we say of the faith of the second century? Could people deny the Real Presence, the divinity of Christ, the perpetual virginity of the Mother of God  - because of the lack of a definition from an Ecumenical Council?


Then why do so many Eastern Orthodox assert that they only believe in what is taught by the "seven ecumenical councils"?

Beats me.  I have never met any.

I have online. But either way, you are trying to pin us down on something that our Church has not defined.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Irish Hermit on April 02, 2009, 11:47:32 PM
I have online. But either way, you are trying to pin us down on something that our Church has not defined.

Fr Lance tells us that the only definition involves two de fide beliefs:

1.  There is a state of final purification.
2.  Prayer for those in that state is effective.

It is apparent immediately that there is no place for indulgences.   The action of indulgences is not to "purify" but to free from "temporal punishment."

But there is no defined doctrine of "temporal punishment" so there is no place for indulgences.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Irish Hermit on April 02, 2009, 11:50:19 PM
Then why do so many Eastern Orthodox assert that they only believe in what is taught by the "seven ecumenical councils"?

Beats me.  I have never met any.

I have online.

Please don't send them to my parish.  :)  I don't want "Orthodox" who claim they can deny the Real Presence or the Assumption of the Mother of God because they have no conciliar definition.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Entscheidungsproblem on April 03, 2009, 12:42:19 AM
Discussion about the term Netodox, etc. has been moved into the Private section.

http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,20531.0.html

If you do not have access to the private section and which to join in, please PM Fr. Chris for access.


Also, let us try to remain on topic and prevent further deviations.  Otherwise, the thread will likely find itself locked soon.


-- Nebelpfade
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Papist on April 03, 2009, 10:24:09 AM
I have online. But either way, you are trying to pin us down on something that our Church has not defined.

Fr Lance tells us that the only definition involves two de fide beliefs:

1.  There is a state of final purification.
2.  Prayer for those in that state is effective.

It is apparent immediately that there is no place for indulgences.   The action of indulgences is not to "purify" but to free from "temporal punishment."

But there is no defined doctrine of "temporal punishment" so there is no place for indulgences.

First of all the temporal punishment in Purgatory, is for the sake of purification. Just as punishment here on earth, accepted in humililty, leads to holiness, so does that punishment in purgatory. Thus, there is indeed room for temporal punishment in purgatory. Indulgences simply help in that process.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Dan-Romania on April 03, 2009, 11:11:27 AM
So how is purgatory ? What happens there ? Any confessions of people about it ? Any experiences , visions ?
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Douglas on April 03, 2009, 11:31:12 AM
Personally, I don't believe there is any purgatory... period. We can pretend to be spin-meisters and make the partial judgment into some sort of purgatory but that's quite a stretch. I've certainly never been taught any sort of purgatory in the eighteen years I've been a member of the Orthodox Church.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Pravoslavbob on April 03, 2009, 11:31:58 AM

If you notice, he did not bother to answer my question: Find me any ecumenical council (as defined by the Catholic Church) which states that a literal fire must be believed.

Please do not confuse me with username!.  We are not the same person.

If gloating makes you feel happy, you are free to gloat.  I have not had time to answer your question.  I am feeling sick and do not have as much time to spend on the computer as I would like.

I didn't realise that the portion of the catechism that you refer to was a quote, because the way that Deacon Lance pasted it onto the thread, it didn't look like a quote, but rather seamless text.  Even so, in the modern Catholic mind one would have to think that the pronouncements of a pope carry a lot of weight.  The implication is very heavily weighted towards Gregory saying that the faithful must believe in an actual fire, though I grant you that there is no absolute proof of this.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Papist on April 03, 2009, 12:43:51 PM

If you notice, he did not bother to answer my question: Find me any ecumenical council (as defined by the Catholic Church) which states that a literal fire must be believed.

Please do not confuse me with username!.  We are not the same person.

If gloating makes you feel happy, you are free to gloat.  I have not had time to answer your question.  I am feeling sick and do not have as much time to spend on the computer as I would like.

I didn't realise that the portion of the catechism that you refer to was a quote, because the way that Deacon Lance pasted it onto the thread, it didn't look like a quote, but rather seamless text.  Even so, in the modern Catholic mind one would have to think that the pronouncements of a pope carry a lot of weight.  The implication is very heavily weighted towards Gregory saying that the faithful must believe in an actual fire, though I grant you that there is no absolute proof of this.
Does the word "actual" come before the word "fire" in the quote from St. Gregory? I don't think so.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Papist on April 03, 2009, 12:45:48 PM
So how is purgatory ? What happens there ? Any confessions of people about it ? Any experiences , visions ?
We don't know much about what its like at all. All we know is that
1. Its a form of post death purification so that those who die in God's friendship but are not yet perfected can enter into heaven.
2. The purification invovles suffering, or punishment if you will.
3. The prayers of the faithful and masses offered on earth help those in purgatory through this process.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Dan-Romania on April 03, 2009, 01:19:37 PM
how is there , like in prison , with bars , darkness , any beast torturing ?
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Papist on April 03, 2009, 01:33:10 PM
how is there , like in prison , with bars , darkness , any beast torturing ?
No, because its a spiritual reality. We really don't know what's it like.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Dan-Romania on April 03, 2009, 01:45:24 PM
If you would of told me about some of them , i could of share something with you .
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Papist on April 03, 2009, 02:37:10 PM
If you would of told me about some of them , i could of share something with you .
I am not sure I understand what you are saying.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Irish Hermit on April 03, 2009, 04:06:56 PM
First of all the temporal punishment in Purgatory, is for the sake of purification. Just as punishment here on earth, accepted in humililty, leads to holiness, so does that punishment in purgatory. Thus, there is indeed room for temporal punishment in purgatory. Indulgences simply help in that process.

You contradict your own Popes, the Vicars of Christ in earth, who speak with the authority of the Apostle Peter.

For example, Peter, through Pope Paul VI, teaches the Catholic Church:


2. It is a divinely revealed truth that sins bring punishments inflicted by God's sanctity
and justice. These must be expiated either on this earth through the sorrows,
miseries and calamities of this life and above all through death,(3) or else in the life beyond
through fire and torments or "purifying" punishments
 
That punishment or the vestiges of sin may remain to be expiated or cleansed and that they
in fact frequently do even after the remission of guilt is clearly demonstrated by the
doctrine on purgatory. In purgatory, in fact, the souls of those "who died in the charity of God
and truly repentant, but before satisfying with worthy fruits of penance for sins committed
and for omissions (9) are cleansed after death with purgatorial punishments.

http://www.vatican.va/holy_father/paul_vi/apost_constitutions/documents/hf_p-vi_apc_19670101_indulgentiarum-doctrina_en.htm

Now I can already hear the negative response being formulated - this is the Pope's personal eroneous teaching.  No Catholic has to believe the Pope.   This is not the truth.

Well apart from the fact that the Pope concludes by saying that what he has written must stand unchanged until the end of time, there is also the official and infallible teaching of the Vatican II Council that you must submit even to teachings of the Pope which are not framed within the narrow formula for infallibility.


"This religious submission of mind and will must be shown in a special way to the
authentic magisterium of the Roman Pontiff, even when he is not speaking ex cathedra;
that is, it must be shown in such a way that his supreme magisterium is acknowledged
with reverence, the judgments made by him are sincerely adhered to, according to his
manifest mind and will.”    ~Dogmatic Constitution on the Church #25

Now Lumen Gentium, the Dogmatic Constitution on the Church, is one of the principal documents of the Second Vatican Council. The Constitution was promulgated by Pope Paul VI on November 21, 1964, following approval by the assembled bishops by a vote of 2,151 to 5.  Whether one posits infallibility in Ecumenical Councils or Popes or both, this document is ungainsayable on all counts, and the Pope was most certainly exercising his magisterial authority.  In other words, Catholic must give assent of mind and will to the papal teaching on purgatory and temporal punishment.

Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Papist on April 03, 2009, 04:17:55 PM
Fr. Ambrose, It appears, based on the quote below, that the fire used in a symbolic way.
2. It is a divinely revealed truth that sins bring punishments inflicted by God's sanctity
and justice. These must be expiated either on this earth through the sorrows,
miseries and calamities of this life and above all through death,(3) or else in the life beyond
through fire and torments or "purifying" punishments

Notice how "or purifying punishments" follows right after "fire and torments" suggesting that the fire is a metaphor for purifying punishment.

Nice try Father, but no cigar. Don't you have better things to do than try to discredit the Catholic faith with poor arguements?
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Irish Hermit on April 03, 2009, 04:27:27 PM
Fr. Ambrose, It appears, based on the quote below, that the fire used in a symbolic way.
2. It is a divinely revealed truth that sins bring punishments inflicted by God's sanctity
and justice. These must be expiated either on this earth through the sorrows,
miseries and calamities of this life and above all through death,(3) or else in the life beyond
through fire and torments or "purifying" punishments

Notice how "or purifying punishments" follows right after "fire and torments" suggesting that the fire is a metaphor for purifying punishment.

Nice try Father, but no cigar. Don't you have better things to do than try to discredit the Catholic faith with poor arguements?

I am not discrediting the Catholic faith, dear Papist.  The Catholics who wriggle and wriggle and wriggle to remake Catholic teaching in a new moulld do that well enough for themselves.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Papist on April 03, 2009, 04:29:44 PM
Fr. Ambrose, It appears, based on the quote below, that the fire used in a symbolic way.
2. It is a divinely revealed truth that sins bring punishments inflicted by God's sanctity
and justice. These must be expiated either on this earth through the sorrows,
miseries and calamities of this life and above all through death,(3) or else in the life beyond
through fire and torments or "purifying" punishments

Notice how "or purifying punishments" follows right after "fire and torments" suggesting that the fire is a metaphor for purifying punishment.

Nice try Father, but no cigar. Don't you have better things to do than try to discredit the Catholic faith with poor arguements?

I am not discrediting the Catholic faith, dear Papist.  The Catholics who wriggle and wriggle and wriggle to remake Catholic teaching in a new moulld do that well enough for themselves.
But we are not the one's trying to remake it. You are. You are trying to claim that my Church has defined something that it has not. I cannot be sure why you are doing this but out of Charity I will assume that it is ignorance of the Catholic Church and not something more nefarious.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Irish Hermit on April 03, 2009, 04:46:08 PM
[I am not discrediting the Catholic faith, dear Papist.  The Catholics who wriggle and wriggle and wriggle to remake Catholic teaching in a new moulld do that well enough for themselves.
But we are not the one's trying to remake it. You are. You are trying to claim that my Church has defined something that it has not. I cannot be sure why you are doing this but out of Charity I will assume that it is ignorance of the Catholic Church and not something more nefarious.

Pope Paul VI writes an Apostolic Constitution using the power of his papal magisterium and his authority as Peter.  He proclaims to the Catholic Church:  "It is a divinely revealed truth..."

And you quibble and say..... but it hasn't been defined ?? !!    :laugh: I have very little charity for these games and deceits.

Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Irish Hermit on April 03, 2009, 06:43:16 PM
...out of Charity I will assume that it is ignorance of the Catholic Church and not something more nefarious.

In truth, I would prefer you assumed that I am nefarious rather than ignorant.     ;D :laugh: ;D


Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Papist on April 04, 2009, 02:20:05 AM
[I am not discrediting the Catholic faith, dear Papist.  The Catholics who wriggle and wriggle and wriggle to remake Catholic teaching in a new moulld do that well enough for themselves.
But we are not the one's trying to remake it. You are. You are trying to claim that my Church has defined something that it has not. I cannot be sure why you are doing this but out of Charity I will assume that it is ignorance of the Catholic Church and not something more nefarious.

Pope Paul VI writes an Apostolic Constitution using the power of his papal magisterium and his authority as Peter.  He proclaims to the Catholic Church:  "It is a divinely revealed truth..."

And you quibble and say..... but it hasn't been defined ?? !!    :laugh: I have very little charity for these games and deceits.


No where does he say that it is a divinely revealed truth that we must believe in a literal fire. Sorry Fr. Ambrose you are just not doing very well with this one.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Irish Hermit on April 04, 2009, 02:36:32 AM
[I am not discrediting the Catholic faith, dear Papist.  The Catholics who wriggle and wriggle and wriggle to remake Catholic teaching in a new moulld do that well enough for themselves.
But we are not the one's trying to remake it. You are. You are trying to claim that my Church has defined something that it has not. I cannot be sure why you are doing this but out of Charity I will assume that it is ignorance of the Catholic Church and not something more nefarious.

Pope Paul VI writes an Apostolic Constitution using the power of his papal magisterium and his authority as Peter.  He proclaims to the Catholic Church:  "It is a divinely revealed truth..."

And you quibble and say..... but it hasn't been defined ?? !!    :laugh: I have very little charity for these games and deceits.


No where does he say that it is a divinely revealed truth that we must believe in a literal fire. Sorry Fr. Ambrose you are just not doing very well with this one.

Um, nowhere have I been discussing a literal fire.  I have been talking about the punishments and torments which the Popes say are inflicted on souls in purgatory.

When you think about it though, what value is a fire, literal or metaphorical, if it does not inflict pain?   I thought that was the whole point of the fire -pain, suffering, purgation, expiation.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Papist on April 04, 2009, 02:38:20 AM
[I am not discrediting the Catholic faith, dear Papist.  The Catholics who wriggle and wriggle and wriggle to remake Catholic teaching in a new moulld do that well enough for themselves.
But we are not the one's trying to remake it. You are. You are trying to claim that my Church has defined something that it has not. I cannot be sure why you are doing this but out of Charity I will assume that it is ignorance of the Catholic Church and not something more nefarious.

Pope Paul VI writes an Apostolic Constitution using the power of his papal magisterium and his authority as Peter.  He proclaims to the Catholic Church:  "It is a divinely revealed truth..."

And you quibble and say..... but it hasn't been defined ?? !!    :laugh: I have very little charity for these games and deceits.


No where does he say that it is a divinely revealed truth that we must believe in a literal fire. Sorry Fr. Ambrose you are just not doing very well with this one.

Um, nowhere have I been discussing a literal fire.  I have been talking about the punishments and torments which the Popes say are inflicted on souls in purgatory.

When you think about it though, what value is a fire, literal or metaphorical, if it does not inflict pain?   I thought that was the whole point of the fire -pain, suffering, purgation, expiation.
There is pain and suffereing in purgatory. But it is a purifying punishment. Not punishment for the sake of punishment. It prepares us for God.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Irish Hermit on April 04, 2009, 02:41:55 AM
[I am not discrediting the Catholic faith, dear Papist.  The Catholics who wriggle and wriggle and wriggle to remake Catholic teaching in a new moulld do that well enough for themselves.
But we are not the one's trying to remake it. You are. You are trying to claim that my Church has defined something that it has not. I cannot be sure why you are doing this but out of Charity I will assume that it is ignorance of the Catholic Church and not something more nefarious.

Pope Paul VI writes an Apostolic Constitution using the power of his papal magisterium and his authority as Peter.  He proclaims to the Catholic Church:  "It is a divinely revealed truth..."

And you quibble and say..... but it hasn't been defined ?? !!    :laugh: I have very little charity for these games and deceits.


No where does he say that it is a divinely revealed truth that we must believe in a literal fire. Sorry Fr. Ambrose you are just not doing very well with this one.

Um, nowhere have I been discussing a literal fire.  I have been talking about the punishments and torments which the Popes say are inflicted on souls in purgatory.

When you think about it though, what value is a fire, literal or metaphorical, if it does not inflict pain?   I thought that was the whole point of the fire -pain, suffering, purgation, expiation.
There is pain and suffereing in purgatory. But it is a purifying punishment. Not punishment for the sake of punishment. It prepares us for God.

So how does this non-literal fire inflict pain and suffering?
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Irish Hermit on April 04, 2009, 02:45:53 AM
Not punishment for the sake of punishment.

So there is no expiatory value to this pain and suffering? 

C'mon, Papist, you know that contradicts the teachings of the Popes though centuries past.    They had very definite teaching on expiation and the need for suffering in the afterlife to expiate the temporal punishment which is due to sin. 
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Papist on April 04, 2009, 02:57:02 AM
Not punishment for the sake of punishment.

So there is no expiatory value to this pain and suffering? 

C'mon, Papist, you know that contradicts the teachings of the Popes though centuries past.    They had very definite teaching on expiation and the need for suffering in the afterlife to expiate the temporal punishment which is due to sin. 
Sure but only a secondary expiation. Christ is the true expiation for our sins. Anything we do is only efficacious under the umbrella of his grace and saving death. And now I am off to bed.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Dan-Romania on April 04, 2009, 03:02:47 AM
so with what is purgatory related to : With Seol the place of the death , With prison ?
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Irish Hermit on April 04, 2009, 08:19:35 AM
There is pain and suffereing in purgatory. But it is a purifying punishment. Not punishment for the sake of punishment. It prepares us for God.

You are doing very well, Papist, but it will take one or two more steps before you grasp the full concept of purgatory and its purpose.

Let's look at the Council of Trent - and its infallible teaching.  The Pope and bishops teach that the purpose of purgatory is the expiation of sin, or the discharge of the debt of temporal punishment 

"If anyone says that after the reception of the grace of justification
the guilt is so remitted and the debt of eternal punishment so blotted
out to every repentant sinner, that no debt of temporal punishment
remains to be discharged either in this world or in purgatory before
the gates of heaven can be opened, let him be anathema." 
~ Trent, Canon 30.


Also the Catechism of the Catholic Church speaks about "those who are expiating their sins in purgatory."

CCC 1475:  "In the communion of saints, "a perennial link of charity
exists between the faithful who have already reached their heavenly home,
those who are expiating their sins in purgatory and those who are still
pilgrims on earth. between them there is, too, an abundant exchange of all
good things."  In this wonderful exchange, the holiness of one profits others,
well beyond the harm that the sin of one could cause others. Thus recourse
to the communion of saints lets the contrite sinner be more promptly and
efficaciously purified of the punishments for sin."

Notice the vocabulary - guilt, debt, temporal punishment, expiation, punishments for sin.

Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Papist on April 04, 2009, 04:40:41 PM
Father Ambrose, what's your point? I do not deny any of this. I have argued quite passionately on other threads that we recieve temporal punishment for the guilt of our sins. I just happen to believe that the ultimate purpose of punishing the guilt of our sins is to make us more Holy.
The only thing that I am denying is that purgatory is literal fire. That is the entire purpose of my arguement here. I am not sure why you are trying to take me downthe rabbit hole that is your view of Catholic theology.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Irish Hermit on April 04, 2009, 04:57:39 PM

The only thing that I am denying is that purgatory is literal fire. That is the entire purpose of my arguement here.

Truth to tell I did not know that since the messages have not been about a literal fire at least not eh ones I have been reading.

But I would have to ask again, what is the purpose of a fire, literal or illusionary,  unless it inflicts pain and suffering?
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: lubeltri on April 04, 2009, 05:51:31 PM

If you notice, he did not bother to answer my question: Find me any ecumenical council (as defined by the Catholic Church) which states that a literal fire must be believed.

Maybe because the request does not make sense to an Orthodox person.  We live within the faith which has been handed down to us, within our Tradition.   Not all of that has received formulation at an Ecumenical Council.  Much of it hasn't.


To give you examples - there is no Ecumenical Council teaching on the Eucharistic Presence, nor on the Dormition and Assumption of the Mother of God.  And we don't even have a conciliar definition of the Church!    But we have managed very nicely through the centuries and Pope Benedict has been so kind as to say that (apart from our obstinacy about his supremacy) we have every doctrinal teaching present and correct.

Your position of, "Give me an Ecumenical Council or I will not believe" is an attack on Tradition.  What should we say of the faith of the second century? Could people deny the Real Presence, the divinity of Christ, the perpetual virginity of the Mother of God  - because of the lack of a definition from an Ecumenical Council?

No. You're the one telling us what we believe as a matter of faith. Thus I am asking you to back up your assertions with references to defined teaching in our Church, or else withdraw those assertions.

Frankly, it is rude to tell other people what they believe. Your obsession with Catholicism does not reflect well on you---I think AMM's descriptions here are very apt.

So I ask again: Back up your assertions or withdraw them.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Αριστοκλής on April 04, 2009, 06:45:58 PM
 ::)

Methinks Fr. Ambrose, the Irish Hermit, knows more about Roman Catholicism than any forum member (from either side of the schism).
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Irish Hermit on April 04, 2009, 07:01:50 PM
Thus I am asking you to back up your assertions with references to defined teaching in our Church, or else withdraw those assertions.

It is a strange emphasis of modern Catholicism that uses the argument:  "Show us the definition or you haven't got a leg to stand on."  I think that I've said before that this attitude is an attack on holy Tradition.  In fact I would go so far as to say that any church organisation whose belief system is only what has been defined in stamped documents from Rome is demonstrating that it is not the One Holy Catholic and Apostolic Church which was instructed by the Apostles to live by tradition and not by definition.   The reduction of the living faith to officially sanctioned definitions is an aberration.  This is a long way from the spirit of Orthodoxy, and it is one of the basic differences betwen our Churches which make attempts at union so difficult.

Of course this attitude suits modern Catholicism which is in the process of re-inventing itself after Vatican II.  It enables modern Catholic theologians to consign to the scrapheap any number of traditional things taught by the Popes and universally believed by the faithful in past centuries.

Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: PeterTheAleut on April 04, 2009, 07:11:49 PM
Thus I am asking you to back up your assertions with references to defined teaching in our Church, or else withdraw those assertions.

It is a strange emphasis of modern Catholicism that uses the argument:  "Show us the definition or you haven't got a leg to stand on."  I think that I've said before that this attitude is an attack on holy Tradition.  In fact I would go so far as to say that any church organisation whose belief system is only what has been defined in stamped documents from Rome is demonstrating that it is not the One Holy Catholic and Apostolic Church which was instructed by the Apostles to live by tradition and not by definition.   The reduction of the living faith to officially sanctioned definitions is an aberration.  This is a long way from the spirit of Orthodoxy, and it is one of the basic differences betwen our Churches which make attempts at union so difficult.

Of course this attitude suits modern Catholicism which is in the process of re-inventing itself after Vatican II.  It enables modern Catholic theologians to consign to the scrapheap any number of traditional things taught by the Popes and universally believed by the faithful in past centuries.


But that isn't the point.  You were asked to provide evidence from the body of Catholic doctrine, that which Catholics consider authoritative, that what you claim they believe is really what they believe.  You weren't asked to comment on how they formulate their beliefs.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Irish Hermit on April 04, 2009, 07:44:13 PM
[But that isn't the point.  You were asked to provide evidence from the body of Catholic doctrine, that which Catholics consider authoritative, that what you claim they believe is really what they believe.

And I have done so, several times. 

Quote
You weren't asked to comment on how they formulate their beliefs.

I may not have been asked to comment but I chose to introduce this into the discussion since it is crucial to understanding how modern Catholics justify changing the faith that was believed by previous Popes and by their ancestors, even such recent ones as their grandparents.  This has a special relevance to the doctrine of purgatory.

However, please go back to the various references I have provided in this thread.  In particular please read the reference to the 1967 Apostolic Constitution of Pope Paul VI Indulgentiarum Doctrina.

I thought that such a recent papal statement would carry some weight with Lubeltri but it seems that I was wrong. 

I could provide many many references from the Popes and eminent RC theologians of previous centuires but it would be useless.  These too will be ignored and dismissed as not infallible.   I have seen this time and time again in discussions on purgatory and other topics.  So that is why I have confined myself to referring to contemporary Popes.


But certainly I have provided references to authoritative Catholic papal teaching.  My previous messages show that. 
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Irish Hermit on April 04, 2009, 08:17:20 PM
But that isn't the point.  You were asked to provide evidence from the body of Catholic doctrine, that which Catholics consider authoritative, that what you claim they believe is really what they believe. 

I have checked and see that in message #36 I provided authoritative material from

1. the Baltimore Catechism
2. the Catholic Encyclopedia
3. Thomas Aquinas and the Summa Theologica.

Later in messages #41 and $65  I provided material from

Pope Paul VI's Apostolic Constitution Indulgentiarium Doctrina

It would be possible, as I am sure Lubeltri is aware, to go back through the centuries and offer material from many Popes but I know from experience that these will be unacceptable as genuine papal teaching.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Douglas on April 04, 2009, 10:19:22 PM
I must say, Fr Ambrose, that you are really opening up my eyes to things I did not understand before regarding Catholicism. Actually, my wife and I were involved at one time in RCIA classes but ultimately we left. Seeing how doctrine changes in the Catholic Church (as you have demonstrated conclusively) I'm now glad we did withdraw.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Irish Hermit on April 04, 2009, 10:36:03 PM
[
But that isn't the point.  You were asked to provide evidence from the body of Catholic doctrine, that which Catholics consider authoritative, that what you claim they believe is really what they believe. 

The Catechism of Pope Saint Pius X

Notice the terminology: satisfaction for sins, propitiatory sacrifice, punishment


9 Q. For what ends then is the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass offered?

A. The Sacrifice of the Mass is offered to God for four ends: (1) To honour Him properly, and hence it is called Latreutical; (2) To thank Him for His favours, and hence it is called Eucharistical; (3) To appease Him, make Him due satisfaction for our sins, and  to help the souls in Purgatory, and hence it is called Propitiatory

109 Q. Why is a penance imposed in confession?

A. A penance is imposed because, after sacramental absolution which remits sin and its eternal punishment, there generally remains a temporal punishment to be undergone, either in this world or in Purgatory.

Source  ::  http://www.ewtn.com/library/CATECHSM/PIUSXCAT.htm
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Papist on April 05, 2009, 12:03:49 AM
[
But that isn't the point.  You were asked to provide evidence from the body of Catholic doctrine, that which Catholics consider authoritative, that what you claim they believe is really what they believe. 

The Catechism of Pope Saint Pius X

Notice the terminology: satisfaction for sins, propitiatory sacrifice, punishment


9 Q. For what ends then is the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass offered?

A. The Sacrifice of the Mass is offered to God for four ends: (1) To honour Him properly, and hence it is called Latreutical; (2) To thank Him for His favours, and hence it is called Eucharistical; (3) To appease Him, make Him due satisfaction for our sins, and  to help the souls in Purgatory, and hence it is called Propitiatory

109 Q. Why is a penance imposed in confession?

A. A penance is imposed because, after sacramental absolution which remits sin and its eternal punishment, there generally remains a temporal punishment to be undergone, either in this world or in Purgatory.

Source  ::  http://www.ewtn.com/library/CATECHSM/PIUSXCAT.htm

And I don't think anyone is objecting to this so I am not sure who you are arguing with. I am only objecting to the idea that Catholics must believe that purgatory is literal fire.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Papist on April 05, 2009, 12:04:31 AM
::)

Methinks Fr. Ambrose, the Irish Hermit, knows more about Roman Catholicism than any forum member (from either side of the schism).
Methinks you need to rethink your position.n ;)
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: ignatius on April 05, 2009, 12:57:29 AM

The only thing that I am denying is that purgatory is literal fire. That is the entire purpose of my arguement here.

Truth to tell I did not know that since the messages have not been about a literal fire at least not eh ones I have been reading.

But I would have to ask again, what is the purpose of a fire, literal or illusionary,  unless it inflicts pain and suffering?

To cleanse as in smelting... the process of separating a metal from it's impurities by heating the concentrate to a high temperature to cause the metal to melt. Smelting the concentrate produces a metal or a high-grade metallic mixture along with a solid waste product called slag.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Irish Hermit on April 05, 2009, 03:34:11 AM
But I would have to ask again, what is the purpose of a fire, literal or illusionary,  unless it inflicts pain and suffering?

To cleanse as in smelting... the process of separating a metal from it's impurities by heating the concentrate to a high temperature to cause the metal to melt. Smelting the concentrate produces a metal or a high-grade metallic mixture along with a solid waste product called slag.

We'd have to agree with Saint Augustine and Thomas Aquinas that the pain of such a thing is worse than any of us could imagine.

It sems quite brutal that the Pope has at his control the means of ending all this misery in the twinkling of an eye by exercising his power to allocate the merits of Christ.    Why does he not provide indulgences to all the Holy Souls?   
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Papist on April 05, 2009, 09:56:04 AM
But I would have to ask again, what is the purpose of a fire, literal or illusionary,  unless it inflicts pain and suffering?

To cleanse as in smelting... the process of separating a metal from it's impurities by heating the concentrate to a high temperature to cause the metal to melt. Smelting the concentrate produces a metal or a high-grade metallic mixture along with a solid waste product called slag.

We'd have to agree with Saint Augustine and Thomas Aquinas that the pain of such a thing is worse than any of us could imagine.

It sems quite brutal that the Pope has at his control the means of ending all this misery in the twinkling of an eye by exercising his power to allocate the merits of Christ.    Why does he not provide indulgences to all the Holy Souls?   
Taking away a healthy fear of purgatory is not a good thing. Just like a healthy fear of hell, it keeps us on our toes. Is it worse than can be imagined? Probably. Is it also better than can be imagined? Probably. The Holy souls in purgatory are in pain due to their suffering but they are also joyful becuase they know that their battle is over and that they are destined for heaven.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: ozgeorge on April 05, 2009, 10:07:30 AM
Taking away a healthy fear of purgatory is not a good thing.
Yes it is a good thing.
We should not even fear hell.
There is nothing to fear but fear itself. Perfect Love drives out all fear.
Fear God.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Papist on April 05, 2009, 10:10:56 AM
Taking away a healthy fear of purgatory is not a good thing.
Yes it is a good thing.
We should not even fear hell.
There is nothing to fear but fear itself. Perfect Love drives out all fear.
Fear God.
In one breath you try to use the scriptural passage that perfect love drives out all fear to reject the idea of the fear of purgatory. Then you state that we should fear God. You are being inconsistant. Either the scriptural passage means all fear in the literal sense and we must not fear God, or it does not mean "all" literally and thus does not support your arguement.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: ozgeorge on April 05, 2009, 10:14:08 AM
In one breath you try to use the scriptural passage that perfect love drives out all fear to reject the idea of the fear of purgatory. Then you state that we should fear God. You are being inconsistant. Either the scriptural passage means all fear in the literal sense and we must not fear God, or it does not mean "all" literally and thus does not support your arguement.

Fear of God is not "being afraid of Him". Fear of God is the same fear we have of offending any Loved One. If only you loved God, you would not be afraid of Him.
May you be liberated from the fear in which you live your life.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Irish Hermit on April 05, 2009, 10:18:26 AM
Taking away a healthy fear of purgatory is not a good thing. Just like a healthy fear of hell, it keeps us on our toes. Is it worse than can be imagined? Probably. Is it also better than can be imagined? Probably. The Holy souls in purgatory are in pain due to their suffering but they are also joyful becuase they know that their battle is over and that they are destined for heaven.

Wouldn't you agree that it is irresponsbile that the Popes exercise their power of indulgences so capriciously?

They set up scenarios with a set of conditions (for example, walking backwards around St Patrick's Purgatory at Lough Derg three times)  which enable their faithful to spring Holy Souls out of purgatory in an instant.   No doubt a lot of Souls were released into heaven in this manner prior to Vatican II when people took indulgences seriously and made every effort to gain them.  Indeed on All Souls Day Catholic churches were crowded with people coming and going and coming again in order to gain indulgences to get Souls out of Purgatory.  And do you remember the great Purgatorial Archconfraternities which must have liberated hundreds of thousands of Souls from the fires and torments?

These last few decades Catholics seem to have forgotten about indulgences and some are quite embarrassed by them.  So Purgatory must be more crowded than ever since fewer people are being released and many more have to suffer there for the full term of their temporal punishment.

Now all this misery can be cured in a flash if the Popes would just release the locks on the infinite merits of Christ which are theirs to dispose of as they will.

This extremely erratic and really rather silly and uncharitable system in the afterlife is all the fault of the Popes.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Papist on April 05, 2009, 02:31:29 PM
In one breath you try to use the scriptural passage that perfect love drives out all fear to reject the idea of the fear of purgatory. Then you state that we should fear God. You are being inconsistant. Either the scriptural passage means all fear in the literal sense and we must not fear God, or it does not mean "all" literally and thus does not support your arguement.

Fear of God is not "being afraid of Him". Fear of God is the same fear we have of offending any Loved One. If only you loved God, you would not be afraid of Him.
May you be liberated from the fear in which you live your life.

If you not have a healthy fear of God's judgement seat then you don't worship the God of the scriptures. May God you to true reverence of his justice.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Papist on April 05, 2009, 02:33:22 PM
Taking away a healthy fear of purgatory is not a good thing. Just like a healthy fear of hell, it keeps us on our toes. Is it worse than can be imagined? Probably. Is it also better than can be imagined? Probably. The Holy souls in purgatory are in pain due to their suffering but they are also joyful becuase they know that their battle is over and that they are destined for heaven.

Wouldn't you agree that it is irresponsbile that the Popes exercise their power of indulgences so capriciously?

They set up scenarios with a set of conditions (for example, walking backwards around St Patrick's Purgatory at Lough Derg three times)  which enable their faithful to spring Holy Souls out of purgatory in an instant.   No doubt a lot of Souls were released into heaven in this manner prior to Vatican II when people took indulgences seriously and made every effort to gain them.  Indeed on All Souls Day Catholic churches were crowded with people coming and going and coming again in order to gain indulgences to get Souls out of Purgatory.  And do you remember the great Purgatorial Archconfraternities which must have liberated hundreds of thousands of Souls from the fires and torments?

These last few decades Catholics seem to have forgotten about indulgences and some are quite embarrassed by them.  So Purgatory must be more crowded than ever since fewer people are being released and many more have to suffer there for the full term of their temporal punishment.

Now all this misery can be cured in a flash if the Popes would just release the locks on the infinite merits of Christ which are theirs to dispose of as they will.

This extremely erratic and really rather silly and uncharitable system in the afterlife is all the fault of the Popes.
No what is silly is that I allow myself to be drawn into conversations with you about purgatory because you continue to view Catholic theology in the worst possible light and refuse to believe that we believe what we say we believe.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Irish Hermit on April 05, 2009, 04:25:46 PM
Wouldn't you agree that it is irresponsible that the Popes exercise their power of indulgences so capriciously?

They set up scenarios with a set of conditions (for example, walking backwards around St Patrick's Purgatory at Lough Derg three times)  which enable their faithful to spring Holy Souls out of purgatory in an instant.   No doubt a lot of Souls were released into heaven in this manner prior to Vatican II when people took indulgences seriously and made every effort to gain them.  Indeed on All Souls Day Catholic churches were crowded with people coming and going and coming again in order to gain indulgences to get Souls out of Purgatory.  And do you remember the great Purgatorial Archconfraternities which must have liberated hundreds of thousands of Souls from the fires and torments?

These last few decades Catholics seem to have forgotten about indulgences and some are quite embarrassed by them.  So Purgatory must be more crowded than ever since fewer people are being released and many more have to suffer there for the full term of their temporal punishment.

Now all this misery can be cured in a flash if the Popes would just release the locks on the infinite merits of Christ which are theirs to dispose of as they will.

This extremely erratic and really rather silly and uncharitable system in the afterlife is all the fault of the Popes.
No what is silly is that I allow myself to be drawn into conversations with you about purgatory because you continue to view Catholic theology in the worst possible light and refuse to believe that we believe what we say we believe.

If you had a way and you could rehabilitate all the prisoners in jail and release them into society, wouldn't you be a total misanthrope if you did not do it?   Well, the Pope has the power to release every Soul from Purgatory but what he is doing?  He is sitting on the treasury of Christ's merits and doling them out in tiny quantities when there's nothing to prevent him bestowing these merits on every Soul in Purgatory.

It's mean-spirited and the whole present system is capricious.   
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: lubeltri on April 05, 2009, 04:43:17 PM
[
But that isn't the point.  You were asked to provide evidence from the body of Catholic doctrine, that which Catholics consider authoritative, that what you claim they believe is really what they believe. 

The Catechism of Pope Saint Pius X

Notice the terminology: satisfaction for sins, propitiatory sacrifice, punishment


9 Q. For what ends then is the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass offered?

A. The Sacrifice of the Mass is offered to God for four ends: (1) To honour Him properly, and hence it is called Latreutical; (2) To thank Him for His favours, and hence it is called Eucharistical; (3) To appease Him, make Him due satisfaction for our sins, and  to help the souls in Purgatory, and hence it is called Propitiatory

109 Q. Why is a penance imposed in confession?

A. A penance is imposed because, after sacramental absolution which remits sin and its eternal punishment, there generally remains a temporal punishment to be undergone, either in this world or in Purgatory.

Source  ::  http://www.ewtn.com/library/CATECHSM/PIUSXCAT.htm

And I don't think anyone is objecting to this so I am not sure who you are arguing with. I am only objecting to the idea that Catholics must believe that purgatory is literal fire.

I guess he thinks we want to weasel out of the idea that God punishes/corrects sinners.

Well, Irish Hermit, you're right. Of the crime of believing that God can and does issue punishment, we are guilty as charged. But then so are the writers of Holy Scripture. 

Forgive us for being so old-fashioned, Irish Hermit.  ;)
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: minasoliman on April 05, 2009, 04:49:49 PM
In one breath you try to use the scriptural passage that perfect love drives out all fear to reject the idea of the fear of purgatory. Then you state that we should fear God. You are being inconsistant. Either the scriptural passage means all fear in the literal sense and we must not fear God, or it does not mean "all" literally and thus does not support your arguement.

Fear of God is not "being afraid of Him". Fear of God is the same fear we have of offending any Loved One. If only you loved God, you would not be afraid of Him.
May you be liberated from the fear in which you live your life.

If you not have a healthy fear of God's judgement seat then you don't worship the God of the scriptures. May God you to true reverence of his justice.

Papist, I have to agree with OzGeorge.  The Greek for "fear" in "fear of God" is not the same as the Greek for being afraid of something.  A healthy fear of God is a fear of God that comes from loving someone you don't want to hurt.  I also fear the saints, my parents, my father in confession, my friends, etc.  But the highest fear of them all is to God and only to God because He is the one I respect the most.  In fact, "fear of God" is a form of respect, not a form of afraid.  I had an idea that Catholics believe the same way about fear of God as any Apostolic Christian would.

To be afraid of hell however is the most primitive form of spirituality, if one can call it spirituality.  St. John Cassian teaches us the three levels of spirituality: afraid of hell, want of heavenly prizes, and the love of God that makes hell and heaven not matter.  The fear of hell is there, but it's not the goal of a Christian.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Papist on April 06, 2009, 12:22:02 AM
In one breath you try to use the scriptural passage that perfect love drives out all fear to reject the idea of the fear of purgatory. Then you state that we should fear God. You are being inconsistant. Either the scriptural passage means all fear in the literal sense and we must not fear God, or it does not mean "all" literally and thus does not support your arguement.

Fear of God is not "being afraid of Him". Fear of God is the same fear we have of offending any Loved One. If only you loved God, you would not be afraid of Him.
May you be liberated from the fear in which you live your life.

If you not have a healthy fear of God's judgement seat then you don't worship the God of the scriptures. May God you to true reverence of his justice.

Papist, I have to agree with OzGeorge.  The Greek for "fear" in "fear of God" is not the same as the Greek for being afraid of something.  A healthy fear of God is a fear of God that comes from loving someone you don't want to hurt.  I also fear the saints, my parents, my father in confession, my friends, etc.  But the highest fear of them all is to God and only to God because He is the one I respect the most.  In fact, "fear of God" is a form of respect, not a form of afraid.  I had an idea that Catholics believe the same way about fear of God as any Apostolic Christian would.

To be afraid of hell however is the most primitive form of spirituality, if one can call it spirituality.  St. John Cassian teaches us the three levels of spirituality: afraid of hell, want of heavenly prizes, and the love of God that makes hell and heaven not matter.  The fear of hell is there, but it's not the goal of a Christian.
I agree that fear is the lowest form of spirituality because it is the beginning. "Fear of the Lord is the begining of wisdom." We should build from there. But even when building from there I should keep in mind that if I turn away from the Lord and die separated from him then I will remains so for all eternity. This is the healthy fear I speak of.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Papist on April 06, 2009, 12:24:28 AM
Wouldn't you agree that it is irresponsible that the Popes exercise their power of indulgences so capriciously?

They set up scenarios with a set of conditions (for example, walking backwards around St Patrick's Purgatory at Lough Derg three times)  which enable their faithful to spring Holy Souls out of purgatory in an instant.   No doubt a lot of Souls were released into heaven in this manner prior to Vatican II when people took indulgences seriously and made every effort to gain them.  Indeed on All Souls Day Catholic churches were crowded with people coming and going and coming again in order to gain indulgences to get Souls out of Purgatory.  And do you remember the great Purgatorial Archconfraternities which must have liberated hundreds of thousands of Souls from the fires and torments?

These last few decades Catholics seem to have forgotten about indulgences and some are quite embarrassed by them.  So Purgatory must be more crowded than ever since fewer people are being released and many more have to suffer there for the full term of their temporal punishment.

Now all this misery can be cured in a flash if the Popes would just release the locks on the infinite merits of Christ which are theirs to dispose of as they will.

This extremely erratic and really rather silly and uncharitable system in the afterlife is all the fault of the Popes.
No what is silly is that I allow myself to be drawn into conversations with you about purgatory because you continue to view Catholic theology in the worst possible light and refuse to believe that we believe what we say we believe.

If you had a way and you could rehabilitate all the prisoners in jail and release them into society, wouldn't you be a total misanthrope if you did not do it?   Well, the Pope has the power to release every Soul from Purgatory but what he is doing?  He is sitting on the treasury of Christ's merits and doling them out in tiny quantities when there's nothing to prevent him bestowing these merits on every Soul in Purgatory.

It's mean-spirited and the whole present system is capricious.   
Yawn. Again, a fear of purgatory as real possibility is a good thing because it reminds us that even our smallest sins are offenses against God. If you and your modernist/protestant view of God don't agree with that, then there is nothing I can do here.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Papist on April 06, 2009, 12:26:52 AM
[
But that isn't the point.  You were asked to provide evidence from the body of Catholic doctrine, that which Catholics consider authoritative, that what you claim they believe is really what they believe. 

The Catechism of Pope Saint Pius X

Notice the terminology: satisfaction for sins, propitiatory sacrifice, punishment


9 Q. For what ends then is the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass offered?

A. The Sacrifice of the Mass is offered to God for four ends: (1) To honour Him properly, and hence it is called Latreutical; (2) To thank Him for His favours, and hence it is called Eucharistical; (3) To appease Him, make Him due satisfaction for our sins, and  to help the souls in Purgatory, and hence it is called Propitiatory

109 Q. Why is a penance imposed in confession?

A. A penance is imposed because, after sacramental absolution which remits sin and its eternal punishment, there generally remains a temporal punishment to be undergone, either in this world or in Purgatory.

Source  ::  http://www.ewtn.com/library/CATECHSM/PIUSXCAT.htm

And I don't think anyone is objecting to this so I am not sure who you are arguing with. I am only objecting to the idea that Catholics must believe that purgatory is literal fire.

I guess he thinks we want to weasel out of the idea that God punishes/corrects sinners.

Well, Irish Hermit, you're right. Of the crime of believing that God can and does issue punishment, we are guilty as charged. But then so are the writers of Holy Scripture. 

Forgive us for being so old-fashioned, Irish Hermit.  ;)
I know. How can we Catholics dare to adhere to the teachings of scripture and tradition on God? Its just not politically corret.  ;)
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Irish Hermit on April 06, 2009, 12:32:14 AM
[Yawn. Again, a fear of purgatory as real possibility is a good thing because it reminds us that even our smallest sins are offenses against God. If you and your modernist/protestant view of God don't agree with that, then there is nothing I can do here.

You sidestep the point every time.

Jesus Christ came to save us from hell and He did.

The Pope has the power to save every Soul from Purgatory and he won't.


Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Papist on April 06, 2009, 12:37:08 AM
[Yawn. Again, a fear of purgatory as real possibility is a good thing because it reminds us that even our smallest sins are offenses against God. If you and your modernist/protestant view of God don't agree with that, then there is nothing I can do here.

You sidestep the point every time.

Jesus Christ came to save us from hell and He did.

The Pope has the power to save every Soul from Purgatory and he won't.



I have not side stepped the issue. I gave you a good response and the fact that I did so is something that you did not like.
Anyway,  Purgatory and hell are essentially different in that Hell does nothing to help us and Purgatory does.
Second, by your reasoning no one would go to hell because Jesus loves us too much and wouldn't want to suffer. Yet, you do not believe in universal salvation do you? Please no sophmoric objections Father.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Irish Hermit on April 06, 2009, 12:42:25 AM
I know. How can we Catholics dare to adhere to the teachings of scripture and tradition on God? Its just not politically corret.  ;)

Totally beside the point.

What I am saying is that the system of indulgences and the Pope's power to deliver from people from Purgatory is so erratic that it borders on gross injustice.

Example:

Bill Jones is a mass murderer and goes to the electric chair, and Glory to God, he repented.  His dear old mother is a wonderful and devout old soul and the day after his death she obtains a plenary indulgence for him.   He is sprung from Purgatory at once and enters Heaven.

The next day Johnny Malloy goes to the chair but he has no old devout mother and no friends interested in obtaining an indulgence and applying it to his soul.... so he has to spend two million years of torment in Purgatory.

You see what I mean, the Pope has set up an iniquitous and rather unjust system.     Worse than that - it makes God Himself appear capricious.

Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Papist on April 06, 2009, 12:47:14 AM
I know. How can we Catholics dare to adhere to the teachings of scripture and tradition on God? Its just not politically corret.  ;)

Totally beside the point.

What I am saying is that the system of indulgences and the Pope's power to deliver from people from Purgatory is so erratic that it borders on gross injustice.

Example:

Bill Jones is a mass murderer and goes to the electric chair, and Glory to God, he repented.  His dear old mother is a wonderful and devout old soul and the day after his death she obtains a plenary indulgence for him.   He is sprung from Purgatory at once and enters Heaven.

The next day Johnny Malloy goes to the chair but he has no old devout mother and no friends interested in obtaining an indulgence and applying it to his soul.... so he has to spend two million years of torment in Purgatory.

You see what I mean, the Pope has set up an iniquitous and rather unjust system.     Worse than that - it makes God Himself appear capricious.


The first problem with this post is that you are measuring purgatory in time, when that is simply impossible. The second problem is that you think its unjust at all. The Lord did say "I will have mercy upon whom I will have mercy".
Common, come up with a good objection.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Irish Hermit on April 06, 2009, 12:57:21 AM
I know. How can we Catholics dare to adhere to the teachings of scripture and tradition on God? Its just not politically corret.  ;)

Totally beside the point.

What I am saying is that the system of indulgences and the Pope's power to deliver from people from Purgatory is so erratic that it borders on gross injustice.

Example:

Bill Jones is a mass murderer and goes to the electric chair, and Glory to God, he repented.  His dear old mother is a wonderful and devout old soul and the day after his death she obtains a plenary indulgence for him.   He is sprung from Purgatory at once and enters Heaven.

The next day Johnny Malloy goes to the chair but he has no old devout mother and no friends interested in obtaining an indulgence and applying it to his soul.... so he has to spend two million years of torment in Purgatory.

You see what I mean, the Pope has set up an iniquitous and rather unjust system.     Worse than that - it makes God Himself appear capricious.


The first problem with this post is that you are measuring purgatory in time, when that is simply impossible.

I put that in to get a rise out of you.

Nevertheless I have a question.   Is the man addicted to stealing pencils given the same amount of time or intensity of torments in Purgatory as the mass murderer.  Is there really no differentiation?    Where would be the justice in that?   

Quote
The second problem is that you think its unjust at all. The Lord did say "I will have mercy upon whom I will have mercy".

Exactly what St Augustine taught with his doctrine of predestination.  In His sovereign goodness, says Augustine,  God "has mercy on those upon whom he will have mercy" and the rest of mankind, the majority,  He choses not to show mercy upon and He leaves them to damnation, even if they may have led the most devout and pure life on earth.


Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: stanley123 on April 06, 2009, 01:52:40 AM
I know. How can we Catholics dare to adhere to the teachings of scripture and tradition on God? Its just not politically corret.  ;)

Totally beside the point.

What I am saying is that the system of indulgences and the Pope's power to deliver from people from Purgatory is so erratic that it borders on gross injustice.

Example:

Bill Jones is a mass murderer and goes to the electric chair, and Glory to God, he repented.  His dear old mother is a wonderful and devout old soul and the day after his death she obtains a plenary indulgence for him.   He is sprung from Purgatory at once and enters Heaven.

The next day Johnny Malloy goes to the chair but he has no old devout mother and no friends interested in obtaining an indulgence and applying it to his soul.... so he has to spend two million years of torment in Purgatory.

You see what I mean, the Pope has set up an iniquitous and rather unjust system.     Worse than that - it makes God Himself appear capricious.


The first problem with this post is that you are measuring purgatory in time, when that is simply impossible.

I put that in to get a rise out of you.

Nevertheless I have a question.   Is the man addicted to stealing pencils given the same amount of time or intensity of torments in Purgatory as the mass murderer.  Is there really no differentiation?    Where would be the justice in that?   

Quote
The second problem is that you think its unjust at all. The Lord did say "I will have mercy upon whom I will have mercy".

Exactly what St Augustine taught with his doctrine of predestination.  In His sovereign goodness, says Augustine,  God "has mercy on those upon whom he will have mercy" and the rest of mankind, the majority,  He choses not to show mercy upon and He leaves them to damnation, even if they may have led the most devout and pure life on earth.



I have to agree with Papist on this. Purgatory just makes a lot of sense to me, because otherwise, you have only heaven or hell. True, hell exists as we read in Scripture, but I believe it is reserved for those who have sinned gravely and who have not repented. However, I just do not see how a person who plucks a wilted flower from among thousands blooming in a park has done something so wrong that it merits eternal damnation. The person has sinned in that he has plucked a wilted flower where the sign says do not pick the flowers, but he has sinned venially and merits a punishment, but not an eternal damnation and everlasting torment in hellfire for this lesser crime.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Papist on April 06, 2009, 10:29:22 AM
I put that in to get a rise out of you.
Which is not a real debate, but rather, sophistry.
Nevertheless I have a question.   Is the man addicted to stealing pencils given the same amount of time or intensity of torments in Purgatory as the mass murderer.  Is there really no differentiation?    Where would be the justice in that?   
Although time has nothing to do with it, the severity of punishment would be different.

Exactly what St Augustine taught with his doctrine of predestination.  In His sovereign goodness, says Augustine,  God "has mercy on those upon whom he will have mercy" and the rest of mankind, the majority,  He choses not to show mercy upon and He leaves them to damnation, even if they may have led the most devout and pure life on earth.



Damnation and purgation are two different things. You are comparing apples and oranges. BTW, do you disagree with the scriptures when they state that God will have mercy upon whom he will have mercy?
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Irish Hermit on April 06, 2009, 12:28:33 PM
[Damnation and purgation are two different things. You are comparing apples and oranges.


If only I were that stupid as not to know the difference.    ;D

Quote
BTW, do you disagree with the scriptures when they state that God will have mercy upon whom he will have mercy?

I disagree with the people who use that to state that God acts capriciously.   I have given examples of this already.  Augustine's teaching is the most outstanding (and most dreadful) example.  Using that verse (and others) Augustine teaches that God decides to save those whom He will save and that His exercise of mercy and salvation is irrespective of whether a man is a saint or a sinner.    Those upon whom God chooses not to have mercy (and that could include such as Pope John Paul II) he leaves to damnation.  Augustine teaches that the majority of the human race is damned because of God's choice not to have mercy.  He teaches that we should be grateful that God chooses to save a few of us.   *That* is the most toxic interpretation of trhe verse.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Papist on April 06, 2009, 12:45:57 PM
[Damnation and purgation are two different things. You are comparing apples and oranges.


If only I were that stupid as not to know the difference.    ;D

Quote
BTW, do you disagree with the scriptures when they state that God will have mercy upon whom he will have mercy?

I disagree with the people who use that to state that God acts capriciously.   I have given examples of this already.  Augustine's teaching is the most outstanding (and most dreadful) example.  Using that verse (and others) Augustine teaches that God decides to save those whom He will save and that His exercise of mercy and salvation is irrespective of whether a man is a saint or a sinner.    Those upon whom God chooses not to have mercy (and that could include such as Pope John Paul II) he leaves to damnation.  Augustine teaches that the majority of the human race is damned because of God's choice not to have mercy.  He teaches that we should be grateful that God chooses to save a few of us.   *That* is the most toxic interpretation of trhe verse.
So are we talking about Augustine or Purgatory Father? I am just curious.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Irish Hermit on April 06, 2009, 01:13:51 PM
[Damnation and purgation are two different things. You are comparing apples and oranges.


If only I were that stupid as not to know the difference.    ;D

Quote
BTW, do you disagree with the scriptures when they state that God will have mercy upon whom he will have mercy?

I disagree with the people who use that to state that God acts capriciously.   I have given examples of this already.  Augustine's teaching is the most outstanding (and most dreadful) example.  Using that verse (and others) Augustine teaches that God decides to save those whom He will save and that His exercise of mercy and salvation is irrespective of whether a man is a saint or a sinner.    Those upon whom God chooses not to have mercy (and that could include such as Pope John Paul II) he leaves to damnation.  Augustine teaches that the majority of the human race is damned because of God's choice not to have mercy.  He teaches that we should be grateful that God chooses to save a few of us.   *That* is the most toxic interpretation of trhe verse.
So are we talking about Augustine or Purgatory Father? I am just curious.

You introduced "I will have mercy upon those upon whom I will have mercy."   It touches on Purgatory, the refusal of the Popes to use the merits of Christ (indulgences) to bring people out of Purgatory, the question of Augustine and predestination.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Papist on April 06, 2009, 01:16:01 PM
[Damnation and purgation are two different things. You are comparing apples and oranges.


If only I were that stupid as not to know the difference.    ;D

Quote
BTW, do you disagree with the scriptures when they state that God will have mercy upon whom he will have mercy?

I disagree with the people who use that to state that God acts capriciously.   I have given examples of this already.  Augustine's teaching is the most outstanding (and most dreadful) example.  Using that verse (and others) Augustine teaches that God decides to save those whom He will save and that His exercise of mercy and salvation is irrespective of whether a man is a saint or a sinner.    Those upon whom God chooses not to have mercy (and that could include such as Pope John Paul II) he leaves to damnation.  Augustine teaches that the majority of the human race is damned because of God's choice not to have mercy.  He teaches that we should be grateful that God chooses to save a few of us.   *That* is the most toxic interpretation of trhe verse.
So are we talking about Augustine or Purgatory Father? I am just curious.

You introduced "I will have mercy upon those upon whom I will have mercy."   It touches on Purgatory, the refusal of the Popes to use the merits of Christ (indulgences) to bring people out of Purgatory, the question of Augustine and predestination.
But it had nothing to do with Augustine and his view hell. We are talking about the Catholic Church and her view of purgatory.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Irish Hermit on April 06, 2009, 11:05:25 PM
But it had nothing to do with Augustine and his view hell. We are talking about the Catholic Church and her view of purgatory.

I have been speaking about the injustices introduced into the purgatorial system by indulgences.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Papist on April 07, 2009, 12:07:15 AM
But it had nothing to do with Augustine and his view hell. We are talking about the Catholic Church and her view of purgatory.

I have been speaking about the injustices introduced into the purgatorial system by indulgences.
No you were talking about double predestination.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Douglas on April 07, 2009, 11:21:15 AM
I presented this thread to my spiritual father (a priest in the Greek Orthodox Arch. and a professor of theology at the university... and... a former Roman Catholic). Here is what he said:

I would hesitate to say that the Catholics have pulled away from the doctrine of Purgatory, since it is a defined dogma, and pulling away from it is really heresy for a catholic. That brings in a whole different question as to whether the present, post-Vatican II church is actually the Catholic church or if it has just become another Protestant denomination (that's my opinion!).
 
Purgatory has some fundamental problems: 1) It doesn't occur in Scripture or in the early fathers; 2) It is a logical step from the errors of medieval scholasticism; 3) It reduces the spiritual life to an exercise in legalism; 4) because of the related dogma of indulgences, it brought in a great deal of corruption and superstition into the catholic church.
 
The very name Purgatory indicates its purpose--to purge the remnants of sin from those who do not die in the state of sanctifying grace. It is considered a part of hell, but not the permanent part. The purging is done through a sort of physical fire (which was absolutely insisted on by the Catholic side at the council of Florence). It leaves little room for the mercy of God to act on its own, and it works very mechanically. On the other hand, it leads to a certain indifference: as long as you are not "too" bad, at least you will end up in Purgatory and not in Hell, and so you are almost there in heaven. So you can live without being particularly holy and still "make it under the wire".
 
For us, there can only be heaven or hell, because of our theology of the afterlife. Heaven and Hell begin in this life; either we are struggling to be living in union with God or we are not. Death does not change that situation. And so, after we die and come into the presence of God, God does not change either. God is love. So, if we have spent our life struggling and striving to live the life of the kingdom, then God will be to one degree or another, a welcoming and warming fire (like a fireplace fire). But if we spend our lives in indifference or in positive hatred of God, then God remains love, but that love seems more like a raging and consuming fire (like a house fire) to us. Hell then, is not the absence of God, but the presence of God--being eternally in the presence of the one you hate, but who loves you. Now, before the resurrection, neither of these states is absolutely permanent, especially around the transitional area, and that is why we have prayers for the dead. The dead can no longer pray for themselves, but we pray for them and ask God to have mercy on them. In other words, we throw ourselves and our loved ones totall on the mercy of God. And some who are on the "negative side" can through our prayers be moved to the "positive side". It's not a question of automatic purification (which is what Purgatory is) but totally through the mercy of God. We trust in the limitless mercy of God to bring those who may not have consciously struggled for theosis to the beginnings of that state. And since we cannot know the state of any soul, we pray for all the dead. Some saints even prayed for the devil! Although there is a superficial resemblance between the two theologies, they differ considerably in the fundamental attitude toward life and sin and salvation.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: theistgal on April 07, 2009, 12:16:44 PM
Bill Jones is a mass murderer and goes to the electric chair, and Glory to God, he repented.  His dear old mother is a wonderful and devout old soul and the day after his death she obtains a plenary indulgence for him.   He is sprung from Purgatory at once and enters Heaven.

The next day Johnny Malloy goes to the chair but he has no old devout mother and no friends interested in obtaining an indulgence and applying it to his soul.... so he has to spend two million years of torment in Purgatory.

I bolded the words "he repented" above because I don't want to see them passed over.  Yes, Bill Jones' mother prayed for him, but Bill had to respond to God's grace or the indulgence would be worthless.

Johnny Malloy should actually have the same opportunity to respond to God's grace, because all of us Christians should be praying for him, too.  We should always pray for people who have no one else to pray for them.  If Johnny goes to Hell because no one was interested in praying for him, he shouldn't go alone.

(I had to modify this because a man has apparently jumped to his death, a few blocks from my office building, this morning.  Was anyone praying for him?  Can we pray for him now?  :'( )
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Papist on April 07, 2009, 12:44:16 PM

(I had to modify this because a man has apparently jumped to his death, a few blocks from my office building, this morning.  Was anyone praying for him?  Can we pray for him now?  :'( )
Lord hear our prayers.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: lubeltri on April 07, 2009, 02:09:07 PM
I know. How can we Catholics dare to adhere to the teachings of scripture and tradition on God? Its just not politically corret.  ;)

Totally beside the point.

What I am saying is that the system of indulgences and the Pope's power to deliver from people from Purgatory is so erratic that it borders on gross injustice.

Example:

Bill Jones is a mass murderer and goes to the electric chair, and Glory to God, he repented.  His dear old mother is a wonderful and devout old soul and the day after his death she obtains a plenary indulgence for him.   He is sprung from Purgatory at once and enters Heaven.

The next day Johnny Malloy goes to the chair but he has no old devout mother and no friends interested in obtaining an indulgence and applying it to his soul.... so he has to spend two million years of torment in Purgatory.

You see what I mean, the Pope has set up an iniquitous and rather unjust system.     Worse than that - it makes God Himself appear capricious.



Nuns and monks across the world routinely offer up prayers and sacrifices for those who have no one to pray for them? It is standard practice. Either way, we must trust God to work out everything through His mercy and justice.

The point of Purgatory is to make someone pure so he can enter heaven. Keep in mind that indulgences come with requirements for them to be efficacious. For plenaries, an extra requirement is for the person to be free of attachment to all sin. Ultimately only God can determine with total certainty the efficacy of an indulgence on a soul.

Why doesn't the Pope just give everybody plenaries? Well, 1) For the reason I just explained, and 2) The Pope would be abusing the Power of the Keys. Such a blanket indulgence would make a farce of the whole thing and would lead people to impiously do their prayers, alms and oblations (or quit doing them at all), making the indulgences quite ineffective...
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: lubeltri on April 07, 2009, 02:09:08 PM
But it had nothing to do with Augustine and his view hell. We are talking about the Catholic Church and her view of purgatory.

I have been speaking about the injustices introduced into the purgatorial system by indulgences.

They may appear to be injustices according to your perspective, but none of us (you included) knows the whole picture. God is just, and he will deal justly with his children.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: lubeltri on April 07, 2009, 02:09:08 PM
I'm sorry for my posts appearing at odd times, but as you might know, I'm under (seemingly permanent) Moderated status. It sometimes takes a day or more for my posts to appear. Please bear with me.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: stashko on April 07, 2009, 04:10:28 PM
I'm sorry for my posts appearing at odd times, but as you might know, I'm under (seemingly permanent) Moderated status. It sometimes takes a day or more for my posts to appear. Please bear with me.

That thought did cross my mind many time's whenever i see your post's ,,,Hope i don't get in trouble  ....
Lord Have Mercy!............
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Marc Hanna on April 07, 2009, 07:43:55 PM
My understanding of indulgences is that they are for the purpose of relieving temporal punishment.  When a Catholic confesses and is prayed over by the priest he/she is forgiven of the eternal consequences, however, the earthly consequences are not forgiven, therefore earthly penance must be made.  Therefore an indulgence is granted to those who perform service to the church or for other good deed as redemption for the earthly consequences of their sins.  This is perfectly in line with Catholic theology, which is more justice and Augustinian based than Orthodox theology.  The fact that these doctrines and dogmas came later is also in line with Catholic theology that says that the Holy Spirit reveals more to us through the ages - this is contrary to Orthodox theology that places emphasis on "the faith that was given to the saints once and for all."

We cannot argue the rightness or wrongness of a theology if taken out of the theological context from which it belongs.  Augustinian theology does not align with Antiochene or Alexandrine theology so to argue such things we must really dispute their foundations.  The early fathers do not all agree.  We must decide who our measure is; for me it is Athanasius and Cyril for others it is Augustine.
Title: Re: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc
Post by: Mardukm on April 07, 2009, 09:16:35 PM
Dear brother Marc,

My understanding of indulgences is that they are for the purpose of relieving temporal punishment.  When a Catholic confesses and is prayed over by the priest he/she is forgiven of the eternal consequences, however, the earthly consequences are not forgiven, therefore earthly penance must be made.  Therefore an indulgence is granted to those who perform service to the church or for other good deed as redemption for the earthly consequences of their sins.  This is perfectly in line with Catholic theology, which is more justice and Augustinian based than Orthodox theology."
Actually, the use of indulgences - in the exact same manner used by the Catholic Church - was used in the early Church.  The indulgences were under the purview of bishops who dispensed them to the faithful who, by virtue of acts worthy of repentance, had their ecclesiastical punishment reduced or cancelled.  St. Basil writes profusely on the matter, if you want to read up on it.  The early Church was more "juridical" than modern Eastern Orthodoxy, and the Catholic Church is no less juridical than the early Church Fathers were.  The Catholic Church is simply staying faithful to the legacy of the early Church, and who can say a bad word about that?  The problem we Orientals would have about indulgences as the Latins currently practice is not the practice itself, but the rationale behind it.  Over the years, the system of indulgences in the Latin Church has become akin to a penal system of punishments meant to satisfy the Justice of God.  Now, Orientals (as distinct from the Easterns) are just as comfortable as the Latins when discussing the Justice of God.  However, for Orientals, as distinct from the Latins, the punishment or discipline we may receive is ALWAYS medicinal instead of penal (though both paradigms actually exist within Latin Catholicism).  That is the only distinction, and we as Orientals should not be so quick to say anything bad about the patristic practice of using indulgences.

Quote
We cannot argue the rightness or wrongness of a theology if taken out of the theological context from which it belongs.  Augustinian theology does not align with Antiochene or Alexandrine theology so to argue such things we must really dispute their foundations.  The early fathers do not all agree.  We must decide who our measure is; for me it is Athanasius and Cyril for others it is Augustine.
This is a great comment, but I would propose that Popes Sts. Athanasius and Cyril on the matter of the Justice of God are quite in keeping with traditional Latin theology on the matter.  Seriously, brother.  We are Orientals with a distinct theology and spirituality from our Eastern brethren.  There are many things we share in common with the Easterns, not with the Latins, but there are also many things we share in common with the Latins, and not with the Easterns.

Blessings,
Marduk