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Moderated Forums => Orthodox-Other Christian Discussion => Topic started by: Matthew777 on July 21, 2006, 08:11:01 PM

Title: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Matthew777 on July 21, 2006, 08:11:01 PM
From reading the works of George Lamsa and other scholars, one could conclude that the Assyrian Church is closer to the original Christian communities in faith, practice, lifestyle and culture than any other religious group. Though, traditionally, the label of "Nestorian" has been attached to them, it may not be reasonably justified. From what I've read, it seems that Nestorius himself did not teach that Jesus exists in two persons, but only that Mary was the mother of Jesus' flesh rather than His divinity.
Nonetheless, one may find at their website this denial of what has been commonly referred to as the "Nestorian" Christology:

"TheÂÂ  Church of the East further rejects any teaching that explicitly or implicitlyÂÂ  suggests that there are two Sons, or two Lords, or two Christs in our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, but we confess one Lord Jesus Christ, the Son of God, whoÂÂ  is the same yesterday, today, and forever."
http://www.cired.org/aceov.html

I would consider it a privilege to live among these same people who preserve ancient Aramaic, the language which Jesus and the Apostles spoke, and the customs of His era.ÂÂ  
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Anastasios on July 21, 2006, 09:51:50 PM
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it seems that Nestorius himself did not teach that Jesus exists in two persons, but only that Mary was the mother of Jesus' flesh rather than His divinity.

Which is itself a heresy! Sheesh, read up more on theology, Matthew.

BTW, I would wager that you have never been to an Assyrian liturgy--I have, three times. It's nice in some respects, not so nice in others.

Anastasios
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Anastasios on July 21, 2006, 09:53:34 PM
Quote
I would consider it a privilege to live among these same people who preserve ancient Aramaic, the language which Jesus and the Apostles spoke, and the customs of His era.

It is a myth that isolate groups preserve ancient usages. Yes, there are cases when this is true, but by and far, they also change, and people assume that because they are isolated, they must be retaining the original.  Assyrians do not speak Aramaic.  They speak a different modern dialect of Syriac which is related but not mutually intelligible.

Anastasios
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Matthew777 on July 21, 2006, 10:02:31 PM
I've thought about moving to India or some third world country to escape the trappings of modernity. I know that may sound hypocritical, considering that I am typing on a computer right now, but I do not always intend to live this way. An isolated group of people, that more or less has remained unchanged since the first century, would be very appealing to me. Do you have any sources to show that such continuity is a myth?
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Matthew777 on July 21, 2006, 10:10:44 PM
Which is itself a heresy!

If and only if that is against what the earliest Christians believed. What are the earliest sources in favor of the Ephesian Christology? I believe in understanding the Virgin Mary as Mother of God, but I'm also willing to defend others against strawmen, no matter how much I'm against their actual position.

BTW, I would wager that you have never been to an Assyrian liturgy--I have, three times. It's nice in some respects, not so nice in others.


You have wagered correctly. I'd assume it is similar to the Liturgy of St. James celebrated in the Syrian Church. Is that true?
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Ebor on July 22, 2006, 07:27:11 AM
An isolated group of people, that more or less has remained unchanged since the first century, would be very appealing to me.

First question:  Why would such a group necessarily let you live with them?  Why do you assume that they would want you or other people not from their group to be there?  Real human beings do not aften act as we might want or imagine. 

Next: how do you know how much a group has or has not changed since the first century?  Technology?  Trade? No modern medicine? If they haven't changed, how would you communicate with them?  What about outside influences?  Anthropology studies?  Just how much do you know about what 1st Century life? That period on this planet covers alot of ground.  In the 1st Century there were Empires like Rome and China and neolithic cultures and others in between.)

And just why is this idea "appealing" to you?  What to you imagine it would be like?  On what do you base this idea?  Have you analyzed your motivation?

Ebor
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Anastasios on July 22, 2006, 11:12:05 AM
I've thought about moving to India or some third world country to escape the trappings of modernity. I know that may sound hypocritical, considering that I am typing on a computer right now, but I do not always intend to live this way. An isolated group of people, that more or less has remained unchanged since the first century, would be very appealing to me. Do you have any sources to show that such continuity is a myth?

Escapism is not the Christian way.  You would probably not survive very long in India, if you are anything like the myriad Americans I saw there who went there seeking "enlightenment" or "a new way."  India is a real place with real people, who live vastly different ways, some of whom are far more materialistic than any American--and far more racist in some regards.  In newspaper ads for marriage proposals, which is stil how 85% of marriages are conducted, the expected skin color is blatantly advertised, as well as height and weight.  You have to realize that India is as diverse as America--some people are great, some people are horrible.  You also have to realize that a great number of people there under 40 are desperate to Westernize and throw away their heritage as much as possible.  For me, that was atrocious and distrubing, but it's a reality you would have to get used to.  Indians meeting an American living in India often wonder what the heck they are doing living in India when so many Indians want out.

You would have to get used to the fact that extreme poverty makes people take extreme measures to get out of it, like constant deceipt and scamming (you think scams are bad in the US?), outright lying, and a general poor-person attitude and atmosphere.  Now before you get the wrong idea, let me explain.  There is nothing wrong with being poor--and I know and have lived with poor people my whole life and at times my family could have been classified as such.  However, when you are around an area which is majority poor people, the culture and atmosphere does start to degrade, and you see a general lack of appreciation for order, manners, politeness, cleanliness, and a strong work ethic.  When you get to India and see 45 unemployed men standing around the dirty street in front of their houses, and no one thinks to actually pick up the trash sitting right in front of them while they sip tea, you will understand what I am talking about.

Matthew, if you really want to go live in India, fine, I enjoyed my time there.  But I am far more of a realist and a pragmatist than you.  Some things about India absolutely stunk, and if you go into it thinking about it like you do, that there is some isolated village with pristine values (there isn't--they all have sattelite TV and watch MTV in villages, even the ones that are not paved and are 50 miles in the middle of the desert, sorry to burst your fantasy) you are going to have a real culture shock.

I think you have a rather Orientalist idea of third world countries.  Perhaps you should read the book Orientalism by Edward Said.

When I was your age a few years back, I wanted to go to India, so I did.  I figured out how to get there with virtually no money, and had a great time. If you want to go, do it, don't talk about it on the internet.  Life is about living, not talking. If you go there, and can honestly say you like it, then fine, you win.  But based on these wild fantasies you are writing here on the board, I don't think you have a clue what it is like over there.

Anastasios
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Anastasios on July 22, 2006, 11:16:22 AM
Do you have any sources to show that such continuity is a myth?

From the linguistic point of view, you might want to read The Power of Babel by John MacWorter (sp?).  It shows how isolated languages change more quickly than modern, written languages because the very nature of language is to change.  Assyrians are not speaking the way Jesus did.  As for customs, you would have to read some anthropology textbooks. But if you are interested in just the Assyrian Church, and how it developed and changed over time, I would read "A History of Christianity in Asia, Vol 1" by Samuel Hugh Moffett.

Anastasios
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Anastasios on July 22, 2006, 11:18:32 AM
Quote
You have wagered correctly. I'd assume it is similar to the Liturgy of St. James celebrated in the Syrian Church. Is that true?

That depends on what we mean by similar.  The Assyrian liturgy is East Syrian and the St James Liturgy is West Syrian.  They are closer to each other than say the Byzantine St James liturgy and the Syrian St James liturgy, but would you be able to walk in and know what is going on? Beyond the basics, no.

Anastasios
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Aristibule on July 22, 2006, 12:36:22 PM
George Lamsa has some New Age tendency, and he's a darling of the Protestants.

Strangely enough, the Aramaic of the Apostles still survives as a modern dialect - though only tentatively and is in danger. That would be in Malloula, Syria - where the Eastern Orthodox and Melkite Catholics both preserved Palestinian Christian Aramaic as a spoken language into our times. The tourist industry, accompanying Arabic speaking businessmen settling in the area, and migration to other lands (such as Texas) has reduced the numbers of young speakers, however. West Syriac is the dialect of Edessa, the first kingdom to convert (tradition having it that the King had written letters to Christ, and received letters in return.) Really, all not that different (West Syriac itself has some Greek influence... the Aramaen folk were not illiterate, and often multi-lingual.)

The Assyrians, however, really the same folk (Aramaens) - but the Eastern branch in Persia. Their dialect, as such, is an Eastern dialect - not what Christ would have spoke. Their liturgy is primarily of Mar Addai and Mari (possibly Ss. Thaddeus and Bartholomew, though also considered different people who were disciples of St. Thomas) - though they also have problematic liturgies of Nestorius and Theodore of Mopsuestia. Given that the West Syrians weren't 'Melkite' (supporters of the Roman emperor), and don't share in Nestorian errors - I think it is safe to say that the Assyrian position of a Byzantine innovation in the faith doesn't apply to the Eastern Orthodox (if it was so, the Oriental churches would share the Nestorian error) but that they did adopt the heresy of Nestorius and Theodore of Mopsuestia. Whether they still hold those errors today? One hears various claims. If they don't, they still venerate Nestorius and use his anaphora.

The liturgical tradition of St. James is older, in any case - all liturgies (including the East Syrian) have undergone changes in time. The melding of two traditions: the Antiochian "Liturgy of the Twelve Apostles" (recorded by St. Luke) and the Jerusalem "Liturgy of St. James" taught him by Our Lord were the source material for both Byzantine and West Syrian liturgies, and close brothers to the Roman and Alexandrian rites - which came from Apostles out of Antioch and Jerusalem as well.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Matthew777 on July 22, 2006, 02:50:46 PM
First question:ÂÂ  Why would such a group necessarily let you live with them?ÂÂ  

I assume that it would be the Christian thing to do.

If they haven't changed, how would you communicate with them?ÂÂ

That's a good question. I'd probably have to learn Syriac. I wonder how possible that would actually be.

What to you imagine it would be like?ÂÂ  

We'd live off the land, share everything in kind, and wouldn't need modern technology and culture to live meaningful lives.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Matthew777 on July 22, 2006, 03:02:13 PM
Escapism is not the Christian way.ÂÂ  You would probably not survive very long in India, if you are anything like the myriad Americans I saw there who went there seeking "enlightenment" or "a new way."ÂÂ  

The Indian Orthodox Church is located in Kerala. It is not "a new way," but was founded by St. Thomas in the first century. I wouldn't plan on living in any other part of the country, and there would already be a support network to help me assimilate. I wouldn't want to live there unless I had a specific thing to do, such as live in a Malankara monastery or go through a seminary.

America is Babylon. Living in a wealthy and powerful nation is not good if at the expense of so many others. Without Western imperialism and economic globalization, we wouldn't enjoy our current comfort in the American way of life. When Jesus instructed us to give up everything, take up His cross, and follow Him, was that a form of escapism? I've been hoping to leave this country for five years. Living in an a culture that is more simple would be desireable. Like Mother Theresa, I would hope to actually help those in need.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Matthew777 on July 22, 2006, 03:05:19 PM
George Lamsa has some New Age tendency, and he's a darling of the Protestants.

George Lamsa was a member of the Assyrian Orthodox Church, and his scholarship is considered questionable at best by most Protestants.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Anastasios on July 22, 2006, 03:40:35 PM
Quote
When Jesus instructed us to give up everything, take up His cross, and follow Him, was that a form of escapism?

Jesus and the Apostles, except for St Thomas, DID NOT LEAVE THE ROMAN EMPIRE, which was the Babylon of its time.

Anastasios
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Ebor on July 22, 2006, 04:32:46 PM
I assume that it would be the Christian thing to do.

You presume much that such a closed group would easily take to at Stranger who was totally different from themselves.  You could be percieved as a threat from the "Outside".  You could unknowingly offend against their customs or ethics.  You come across as patronizing.  They would not be "simple" or childlike, but people who had lived a longer and harder life then you have, more then likely. 

I was taught that it is not polite to expect and assume that other people will be obliged to accomodate me or do what I like.  That is presumptuous.

Quote
That's a good question. I'd probably have to learn Syriac. I wonder how possible that would actually be.

They could have their own dialect.  They could have a very different language. there are concepts and customs and behaviours that go along with speech that outsiders often don't know.  Example: In Japan it is offensive to blow ones nose in public.  A gesture in one country that is offensive, in another does not mean anything bad.  You seem to have a dreamworld of what it would be like, just as you did a  year and a half ago when you were talking about how you would join a monastery, and didn't seem to think it possible that any abbot you approached might just not accept you as a monk.  Not from lack of Christian charity, but because he might see that you did not fit the vocation.

Quote
We'd live off the land, share everything in kind, and wouldn't need modern technology and culture to live meaningful lives.

And what if these unchanged people did not have such customs and sharing everything?  What if some of their customs were ones you didn't like.  WOuld you try to change how they treated women or animals for example, if they had practices that were not "enlightened"?  Life in the 1st Century was not some kind of idyllic existance. 

I'm sorry.  But you seem to have no idea about what real life for real human beings in places that you are not familiar with is like.  You scorn your 'here and now' and look for some kind of imagined earthly paradise.  It isn't there.  There is still sin and sorrow and disease and pain.

Ebor
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Ebor on July 22, 2006, 04:55:50 PM
America is Babylon. Living in a wealthy and powerful nation is not good if at the expense of so many others.

America has plenty of poor and not powerful people and places in it.  It has lots of good, hard working people who do what they can.  It has small towns and even smaller villages.  You know very little about how millions upon millions of people live.  Try visiting some place like my home state of Montana, before you lay down such a blanket statement.  Meet a few farm wives or a rancher from the Hi-line, or miners from Butte or a Blackfoot artist that uses recycled materials or a small town doctor, or some people who have had different experiences then you have.

Quote
Without Western imperialism and economic globalization, we wouldn't enjoy our current comfort in the American way of life. When Jesus instructed us to give up everything, take up His cross, and follow Him, was that a form of escapism?

There are more ways to take up a cross then just going off to another "simpler" culture.  Would you have the strength and determination to stay the course for many years with a child with a disability?  Or a family member with depression? Sticking to a promise even if it's hard sometimes?   

And btw there are plenty of people working for Fair Trade and proper treatment of workers here and abroad. You are not the first to believe that globalization is not such a good thing for real Human Beings.

Quote
I've been hoping to leave this country for five years. Living in an a culture that is more simple would be desireable. Like Mother Theresa, I would hope to actually help those in need.

And what can you actually *do* to help them? Do you decide what they need even if they don't want it?  Do you see them as human beings with their own ideas and beliefs and opinions?  Do you think that you have what Mother Theresa had? 

Are you trying to escape from your own life situation?  It's not perfect on the other side of the fence or the country or the globe.  Do you see the world as it really is or as you imagine it to be for good or ill?

Ebor
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Matthew777 on July 22, 2006, 11:54:11 PM
I'm sorry.ÂÂ  But you seem to have no idea about what real life for real human beings in places that you are not familiar with is like.ÂÂ  You scorn your 'here and now' and look for some kind of imagined earthly paradise.ÂÂ  It isn't there.ÂÂ  There is still sin and sorrow and disease and pain.

I am not looking for an earthly paradise, that would be impossible. I'd rather live in a country where this is more suffering, and less comfort, than we have in the United States. We are fed so much jingoism that we are the best nation of all time simply because of the power and wealth we yield, an idea which I find detestable.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Matthew777 on July 23, 2006, 12:03:19 AM
America has plenty of poor and not powerful people and places in it.

This I know, especially growing up in a lower middle class family. Despite the great wealth of our nation, there is also great disparity between the super rich and the very poor. I'd rather live in a nation without wealth than one where wealth is so unevenly distributed.

  Would you have the strength and determination to stay the course for many years with a child with a disability?  Or a family member with depression? Sticking to a promise even if it's hard sometimes?  ÃƒÆ’‚Â

I am not an especially good or strong person, such things take time.

Do you think that you have what Mother Theresa had?ÂÂ  

No, there is nothing about me that would make me comparable to any saint. What I'm saying is that I'd rather work for the benefit of others rather than for a paycheck. I wouldn't mind sleeping on a cot and eating only bread, because the work of God is worth such sacrifice.

Are you trying to escape from your own life situation?

I enjoy my current life situation. I am doing well at school, have a good family, attend a great church, and am dating a nice girl. But I know that there is more to life than this, and I'd be willing to give up everything to find it. When we look at the lives of the saints, they were oftentimes rather well off people who gave up all earthly possessions and attachments to work for the greater glory of God. I don't see why, at some point, I shouldn't do the same. I don't want to be famous, and it wouldn't matter if I died and no one remembered me. But for the time that I am on this earth, I want to make it count.

Peace.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Anastasios on July 23, 2006, 12:35:20 AM
Quote
This I know, especially growing up in a lower middle class family. Despite the great wealth of our nation, there is also great disparity between the super rich and the very poor. I'd rather live in a nation without wealth than one where wealth is so unevenly distributed.

What in God's name are you talking about? American wealth is distributed VERY FAIRLY.  Do you have any idea HOW BAD the distribution of wealth is in India? Latin America? Give me a break. In India, you see people driving Mercedes living in 10 million dollar houses with gates and armed guards, while outside are people malnourished and near death in the street. You do NOT see that in America. Get real.

Anastasios
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Matthew777 on July 23, 2006, 02:50:45 AM
Is there any place where we can give up modern technology and live like the first-century Christians?
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Aristibule on July 23, 2006, 12:57:46 PM
Quote
George Lamsa was a member of the Assyrian Orthodox Church, and his scholarship is considered questionable at best by most Protestants.


Funny - I didn't know you knew most Protestants, at least they haven't mentioned you. ;)

Seriously, George Lamsa is highly respected in most Protestant academic circles. The Nestorians are seen a sort of 'proto-Protestants' by many as many of the things Protestants hate Roman Catholicism and Eastern Orthodoxy for are lacking with the Nestorians (the problem being, it stems from the teachings of Nestorius!) Not all Assyrians are Nestorian, of course. Many of those living around Urmia in Iran, the Caucasus, and in Baghdad and northern Iraq are actually Orthodox (some in the Syrian church, some once under the Russian Orthodox, now under the Antiochians.) At ORU, two of my close friends (and adopted sisters) were Assyrians who repeatedly told me 'We are the same as Russian Orthodox' (I didn't fully understand the import of that til years later after reading this http://www.roca.org/chicagoanddetroit/bishop.htm (http://www.roca.org/chicagoanddetroit/bishop.htm) .) Also, at ORU at least, and for those in the Pentecostal/Charismatic and even Emerging Church movements - Lamsa's translation is held up as a 'purer text' vs. those 'Roman' texts (Vulgate or Septuagint/Byzantine derived texts.) In discussion with an Assembly of God minister about just this subject during the first week of July, I made the suggestion that learning Western Syriac and reading the Peshitto would be more reliable (note, not the Nestorian Peshitta.) He was quoting another Assembly of God pastor who had suggested Lamsa's text (that pastor having a Doctorate from ORU.)ÂÂ  Strange note - the Chinese texts of the East Syriac Peshitta include the books that the Nestorian Peshitta are missing. Evidence, I think, that the East Syrians once had a Biblical culture and theology in common with the Orthodox.

Quote
Is there any place where we can give up modern technology and live like the first-century Christians?

A Luddite colony? To live like first-century Christians, probably a monastery - St. John Cassian pointed out that the monastic movement was born when those who had been raised in the Church reacted against the new secular Roman 'convert' Church that had become very carnal. They retreated to the deserts of Egypt and Palestine. If one wants that life, there is always the 'monastic desert' (though, I hope that wouldn't mean one would think it has to be Athos, Sinai, or something like. One can 'bloom where they are planted' - monasteries are most everywhere in the world.)
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Matthew777 on July 24, 2006, 01:58:37 AM
Funny - I didn't know you knew most Protestants, at least they haven't mentioned you. ;)

What I am speaking of is Protestant Biblical scholars, most taking for granted that the Greek is the original text.

The Nestorians are seen a sort of 'proto-Protestants' by many as many of the things Protestants hate Roman Catholicism and Eastern Orthodoxy for are lacking with the Nestorians

The Assyrian Church of the East to which George Lamsa belonged is not Nestorian in its Christology, that is a strawmen often made against them, and Lamsa himself. However, I would be open to contrary evidence.

In discussion with an Assembly of God minister about just this subject during the first week of July, I made the suggestion that learning Western Syriac and reading the Peshitto would be more reliable (note, not the Nestorian Peshitta.)

The Aramaic Peshitta is not Nestorian and is actually older than the Western Peshitto.

If one wants that life, there is always the 'monastic desert'

But rather than living in seclusion with fellow members of the male sex, I'd like a place to raise a family.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Aristibule on July 24, 2006, 06:25:01 AM
First off, the 'church' to which George Lamsa belonged was Missionary Bible Church (the one he founded.) Lamsa was a Protestant until his death. His books were all published by Protestant publishers (Spring Arbor now, A. J. Holman while he was alive.) He was also the founder of the 'Christian Mohammedan Society'. He was also a speaker at the "Association for Research and Enlightenment" (the Edgar Cayce foundation.)

The Peshitta itself is a 4th c. reduction of older Aramaic texts (Peshitta meaning 'simple'.) That we have an older copy of the Peshitta than the Peshitto extant does not mean that the Peshitta is older, or especially *more reliable*. Its oddity includes the fact of the removal of the Epistles of St. Peter, St. John, St. Jude and the Apocalypse of St. John. (However, the East Syrian texts used in China did have these Epistles.)

Lamsa himself taught such oddities as "the Eastern Christians believe in one God with three attributes, instead of three persons." He looked forward to a 'New World Order' without borders. He ignored the Holy Spirit and claimed the Comforter was simply the "influence" of Jesus Christ after his death.

I'd suggest a little more research before making a hero out of the man. Have you read any of his other books perhaps?

As for the monastic life - it has long been the custom to have families attached to a monastery (or nearby) - living Third World style can't guarantee one of a 1st C. Christian life. (Though, if one really wants that - move to Sudan or a country where Christians are actively persecuted.)

Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: CRCulver on July 24, 2006, 09:38:23 AM
Do you have any sources to show that such continuity is a myth?

See Bauer & Trudgill, Language Myths (http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/0140260234/christorculve-20/104-2002403-8111902?%5Fencoding=UTF8&camp=1789&link%5Fcode=xm2) (Penguin, 1999)
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: CRCulver on July 24, 2006, 09:46:05 AM
The Assyrian Church of the East to which George Lamsa belonged is not Nestorian in its Christology, that is a strawmen often made against them, and Lamsa himself. However, I would be open to contrary evidence.

If they were not Nestorians, they would submit to the Ecumenical Councils unequivocaly, contact Constantinople with humility, and beg to be brought back to the communion of the Church. But they don't.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Matthew777 on July 24, 2006, 03:52:42 PM
Lamsa was a Protestant until his death.

If so, why did he have such distaste for Western Christianity?

The Peshitta itself is a 4th c. reduction of older Aramaic texts (Peshitta meaning 'simple'.)

The oldest complete manuscript of the New Testament is the Aramaic Peshitta:
"Among the treasures on view by the public when the renovated QCC Art Gallery reopens in October will be the Khaburis Codex. The Khaburis Manuscript, according to Reverend Deaconess Nancy Witt, PT, MSW, MSJ and Abbott Gerrit Crawford, PhD, MSJ of the Western-Rite Syrian Orthodox Church in America, is a copy of a second century New Testament, which was written in approximately 165 AD (internally documented as 100 years after the great persecution of the Christians by Nero, in 65 AD). Carbon dating has found this copy of the New Testament to be approximately 1,000 years old. Given its origins, this would make it a copy of the oldest known New Testament manuscript. It was scribed on lamb parchment and hand bound between olive wood covers adorned with gold clasps, hinges and corner-brackets. The scribe would have been in ancient Nineveh (present-day Mosul, Iraq), according to the Colophon signed by a bishop of the Church at Nineveh. In the Colophon, the bishop certified (with his inverted signature and seal) that the Khaburis was a faithful copy of the second century original. Of particular interest, is the fact that the Khaburis is written entirely in Aramaic, the language spoken by Jesus of Nazareth... "
http://www.qgazette.com/news/2004/0804/features/001.html

Lamsa himself taught such oddities as "the Eastern Christians believe in one God with three attributes, instead of three persons."

That is a difference in language rather than doctrine.

He looked forward to a 'New World Order' without borders.

Wasn't that just the hope for a messianic age of peace?

I'd suggest a little more research before making a hero out of the man. Have you read any of his other books perhaps?

I own the Lamsa Bible and Gospel Light, both I read rather often.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: TomS on July 24, 2006, 04:35:49 PM
Wow, M777. Your statements in this thread have to be the dumbest things I have read in a long time. You really know absolutely NOTHING about life or the conditions of people outside of the US. 

Like Anastasios, I too spent some time in India (albeit, only a month) working on a software project. If you think life is better there...... wow. You just have no idea how unfairly wealth can be distributed and how utterly without hope it can be for the poor.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Ebor on July 24, 2006, 04:47:13 PM
I am not looking for an earthly paradise, that would be impossible. I'd rather live in a country where this is more suffering, and less comfort, than we have in the United States. We are fed so much jingoism that we are the best nation of all time simply because of the power and wealth we yield, an idea which I find detestable.

What is this "We"?  Your perceptions are not universal. There are plenty of people in this country who don't go along with that attitude.

As to living in a place with more "sufferintg" it is real human beings who experience suffering and pain and despair and all the ills of life. Life is Suffering.  The Buddha got that right with the first "noble truth".  Part of compassion is trying to aleviate suffering, not somehow revelling in it.  Why does human misery appeal to you as somehow better?  Who are you to tell other people who have suffered more then you have that they have the prefered life?  Could you say that to a mother whose children are starving to death?  Or a farmer in a drought?  Can you see the people there as just as real as you are?  Just as human?  and not some how happy if there is disease and death and hunger or any of the myriad things that cause suffering?

If you want to live with suffering (are *you* going to suffer or is it just other people having more suffering that makes a place desireable in  your eyes? )  You can go down to the Gulf Coast and help rebuild there.  You can go live on a reservation, or in any number of places in the Appalachias or an inner city slum or a shelter or a hospital for the dying.  What if God placed you where you are to do something there and not in some far away and unknown place?

Ebor ÂÂ  
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Ebor on July 24, 2006, 04:53:05 PM
Is there any place where we can give up modern technology and live like the first-century Christians?

Which ones?  They weren't all the same.  You could move to a cabin in the  mountains and not have electricity (no computer fora then) or piped in water.  Just how much "modern technology" are you willing to give up?  And would feel yourself able to tell others that they should not have any? would you stop them if they wanted some?  Will you spin and weave your own cloth ?  Give up dentistry and medicine?  Where will you go to find a place to grow food?  Have you ever had to farm for an extended period dependent on the vagaries of the weather?  What is it in your mind that makes "modern technology" a bad thing?  There are Amish and Old Order groups with less "technology" or are they still too advanced? 

How much do you know about basic human survival?

Ebor
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Aristibule on July 24, 2006, 05:03:12 PM
If so, why did he have such distaste for Western Christianity?

A dislike for Western culture, yes, but he was still an Evangelical Protestant - again, he was the founder of a Protestant Church, his materials were all printed and distributed for and by Protestants (being part of an Orientalist movement in Protestantism that has its full flowering in the Protestant movement now known as Hebraist.) Ever hear of Ethnocentrism? Again - Lamsa's church is the one he founded and pastored: Calvary Missionary Church (evangelical protestant.)

Quote
The oldest complete manuscript of the New Testament is the Aramaic Peshitta:

It isn't complete, as it is missing 5 necessary books which we all have full texts all dating more than 700 years before the Khaburis Codes. The compiling of texts into a 'complete' New Testament was a late development in any case - a book of Gospels, another for Epistles was the custom (often with texts bound in a single volume with other liturgical material or theological writings.) The Khaburis Codex isn't evidence for what you think it is.

Quote
That is a difference in language rather than doctrine.

No - it isn't a language difference, but a difference of *dogma* (more than just doctrine.) The idea that Greek Christians were ignorant of Semitic language, and Semitic Christians ignorant of Indo-European language is false. Lamsa, being a Westerner (he wrote all of his material in the West, in a Western language) was mindful of what he wrote - and dead wrong. One God in three persons is also the tradition of the Christians speaking West Syriac, and Palestinian Christian Aramaic (the actual dialect of Christ - again, spoken only by Eastern Orthodox Antiochians and Melkite Catholics today.) One God in three attributes is simply heretical.

Quote
Wasn't that just the hope for a messianic age of peace?

No, not in the context of Lamsa's complete corpus and associations - he's as Orthodox as Watchman Nee, Father Divine, or E. W. Kenyon (IOW, not at all.) His plan for implementation of his dreamed 'New World Order' was by his own writings and actions based upon a "lowest common denominator" approach to various faiths (Islam among them), and was blatantly political (in an anarchist way.) He flunks on Anthropology as well - all cultures change (and have changed) over time. His upbringing (despite his claims) was not the same as that of Palestinian Jews in the time of Christ's Incarnation. (Not even Aramaic Christians in Palestine have had upbringing like that - not since the time of Christ's Incarnation!) Lamsa's Semitic culture is early 20th century *Modernist* (though he wouldn't like that) Colonial/Post-Colonial early Nationalist Middle Eastern ... the dialect he was raised with wouldn't have even been the same as any of the Apostles (for that matter, St. Matthew records that St. Peter's language was markedly Galilean - as were most of the other Apostles.) Go to Galilee if you want to find those closest to Christ and the Apostles in language, culture, blood, etc.

Quote
I own the Lamsa Bible and Gospel Light, both I read rather often. ÂÂ

Too bad - my Lamsa Bible had the same fate as my Dake's Bible.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Ebor on July 24, 2006, 05:32:54 PM
This I know, especially growing up in a lower middle class family. Despite the great wealth of our nation, there is also great disparity between the super rich and the very poor. I'd rather live in a nation without wealth than one where wealth is so unevenly distributed.

And where is this "wealthless" nation? ÂÂ What makes you think such a place exists? ÂÂ And why should the people there want you to live with them? ÂÂ  You might read some of the classic works on both Utopias and Dystopias such as More's "Utopia", LeGuin's "The Dispossed" and others. ÂÂ

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I am not an especially good or strong person, such things take time.

Indeed, they come by time and living and learning from others and helping others without thinking of oneself and much more.  What are you doing to gain such traits? ÂÂ

Quote
No, there is nothing about me that would make me comparable to any saint. What I'm saying is that I'd rather work for the benefit of others rather than for a paycheck. I wouldn't mind sleeping on a cot and eating only bread, because the work of God is worth such sacrifice.

How do you know you can really do that?  Have you tried it?  For how long?  It's easy to talk about what one might do.  Really doing it is a very different matter.  What if God has other plans for you then yours?  How will you know if your ideas are what He wants?  If you have some other talent or ability, but aren't very good at cots and bread? ÂÂ

Typed words on a computer are a long way from from suffering. ÂÂ What would you DO? What work? ÂÂ What deeds? ÂÂ What benefits other Human Beings? What if what they wanted or needed was something you didn't like? ÂÂ  Sometimes what benefits them might be some small piece of "modern technology" like a well so they can have clean water or the "Solar oven" so that a woman doesn't have to hunt for hours for enough wood to make a fire to cook one meal a day. ÂÂ Millions upon Millions of people don't have the clean water that most of us on this forum can get when ever we want. ÂÂ Not all "modern tech" is evil. ÂÂ  

Quote
I enjoy my current life situation. I am doing well at school, have a good family, attend a great church, and am dating a nice girl. But I know that there is more to life than this, and I'd be willing to give up everything to find it.

What if where you are now is the place you're supposed to be? ÂÂ

Quote
When we look at the lives of the saints, they were oftentimes rather well off people who gave up all earthly possessions and attachments to work for the greater glory of God. I don't see why, at some point, I shouldn't do the same. I don't want to be famous, and it wouldn't matter if I died and no one remembered me. But for the time that I am on this earth, I want to make it count.

There are many ways to make a difference.  How are you making a difference in the lives of the people you see every day, your family and neighbors?  You have Now and Here to do things.  The future may be quite different then what you imagine.

Ebor
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Matthew777 on July 24, 2006, 05:40:08 PM
No - it isn't a language difference, but a difference of *dogma*

I do think that it's a matter of language. Assyrian Christians would rather use the word "attributes" than "persons" to describe the Trinity, as to not be accused of tritheism. This makes sense, considering the predominance of Islam in that region.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Aristibule on July 24, 2006, 05:56:43 PM
It helps keep them from being accused of Orthodoxy as well. Language is real - errors in language are real errors - one can say 'three persons' in East Syriac as any other language without expressing 'tritheism'. So, if that is the actual reason - it is an overcompensatory error, but still an error. East Syriac, West Syriac, Palestinian Christian Aramaic - dialects of the same language, and the speakers of two of those listed have no problem with "One God in three persons", without a hint of polytheism ... and all the while living in the same Islamic-dominated society that makes some feel it necessary to disavow Orthodoxy to avoid hints of polytheism. Added: In fact, there are speakers of East Syriac who also have no problem with "God in three persons" without being the least bit tritheistic/polytheistic - again, the Assyrians in the Syriac Orthodox Church (http://sor.cua.edu (http://sor.cua.edu) or the Assyrian Orthodox Church (formerly MP/ROCOR also Antiochian - http://www.roca.org/chicagoanddetroit/bishop.htm (http://www.roca.org/chicagoanddetroit/bishop.htm) - all of them far more involved in their Semitic civilization on a day-to-day basis than George Lamsa and his followers.

Re: the search for a Utopia of Poverty, Ebor is spot on. Do you read the CIA World Factbook? Look up the world's poorest countries and consider their attributes (like Somalia or Afghanistan.)
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Anastasios on July 24, 2006, 07:09:37 PM
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/George_Lamsa
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Anastasios on July 24, 2006, 07:15:17 PM
I do think that it's a matter of language. Assyrian Christians would rather use the word "attributes" than "persons" to describe the Trinity, as to not be accused of tritheism. This makes sense, considering the predominance of Islam in that region.

Sorry, Matthew, Assyrian Christians (i.e. the ones who are not Protestants like George Lamsa) accept the term person.  Here is an article that mentions person and which outlines Assyrian theology:

http://www.cired.org/east/0102_assyrian_perspective.pdf

There are other articles on the site:

http://www.cired.org/east.html

I hope you will be able to broaden your understanding of what the Assyrian Church of the East teaches.

Anastasios
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Matthew777 on July 24, 2006, 10:16:54 PM
It helps keep them from being accused of Orthodoxy as well. Language is real - errors in language are real errors - one can say 'three persons' in East Syriac as any other language without expressing 'tritheism'.

What I am saying is that in Lamsa's mind, one could believe in the Trinity, that God exists in three persons, without actually using the word "person." If he were anti-trinitarian, one would expect such a bias to creep into his translation of the New Testament.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Anastasios on July 24, 2006, 10:52:52 PM
What I am saying is that in Lamsa's mind, one could believe in the Trinity, that God exists in three persons, without actually using the word "person." If he were anti-trinitarian, one would expect such a bias to creep into his translation of the New Testament.

No, that is not what you said. You said that Assyrians don't use the word person. They do. George Lamsa did not. Hence, he was not an ordinary Assyrian.  It is irrelevant what he thought personally--he used the wrong language, and this is very dangerous in theology.

Anastasios
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Matthew777 on July 25, 2006, 02:52:14 AM
Either Lamsa lied concerning his own faith background, or the the Assyrian Church of the East does use different language in describing the Trinity. According to Lamsa, the term "three persons" implies three gods to the average Semitic mind, which is why Jews and Muslims have traditionally rejected Trinitarian doctrine. Instead, Lamsa used the Aramaic "kenomey," instead of the Greek concept "person," which means "substance" in English.
Linguistic differences are all too often mistaken as heresy. As the Malankara Church to which I belong would assert, language barriers are the reason why the split of Chalcedon occurred. Therefore, I'd be careful to learn more about a person and his particular beliefs before using such a strong term.

"An examination of William Jennings' Lexicon to the Syriac New Testament, shows that the word "Kenomey" means "solid existence, substance, Hebrews XI (as distinct from the shadow); person, so the self, -self" (27). The word is used in the Syriac (Lamsa's Aramaic) translation of John 5:26. Here John writes that the Father has life "in himself." He also states that the Father grants to the Son to have life "in himself." Thus, it would seem that "kenomey" could be used not just as "substance", but as "person," as Jennings indicates. It's also important to realize the fluidity and interchangeability of words used for the three persons of the Trinity by the early Church. Various words such as the Greek words "hypokeimenon", "hypostasis", "prosopon" and even "ousia", as well as Latin words such as "persona" and "substantia" were used to designate the three members of the Trinity (28).

...One wonders what Lamsa meant by "one God with three Kenomey attributes." The word "attributes" might lead one to speculate that Lamsa was a modalist, one who held to one God in one person. It is important to note that Nestorianism in itself does not reject the Trinity. Mar Abd Yeshua, 13th century Nestorian Metropolitan of Nisibis and Armenia, spoke in favor of the Trinity. For him, "The 'Holy' thrice repeated in the seraphic hymn, as mentioned by Isaiah, joined with one 'LORD,' attests Three Persons in One Essence" (32). Those who railed "at the truth of the Catholic Church, on account of her faith in the Trinity", he wished to "be confounded and put to shame" (33).

Lamsa's inconsistency is probably best understood in light of the Nestorian idea of the Trinity. Nestorianism does not reject the Trinity. It does, however, use different terminology to describe the doctrine. Lamsa appears to be unique in his dislike for the term "Trinity." Nestorians in general do not appear to share Lamsa's dislike. Lamsa's dislike for the term probably resulted from his dislike of anything Greek (34).

Lamsa probably was a Trinitarian, even though he disliked the word "Trinity." To dislike a word does not mean that one disagrees with the concept behind the word. St. Augustine disliked the word "persons" when speaking of the Trinity. He thought it was too easy to misunderstand the word and think of it as meaning separate individuals, therefore destroying the divine unity of the Godhead. However, he adopted the word "because of the necessity of affirming the distinction of the Three against Modalism" (35). When asked what three were within the divine unity, Augustine would answer that "human language labors altogether under great poverty of speech. The answer however, is given three 'persons,' not that it might be (completely) spoken, but that it might not be left (wholly) unspoken" (36).

Nestorian writers often distinguished the three in the Trinity not by the Persons but by the characteristics or attributes that made each person unique. Thus the characteristic that made the Father unique was the fact that He is the begetter and not the begotten. What made the Son unique was the fact that He is begotten and not the begetter. What sets the Holy Spirit off from the other two Persons is that He proceeds (37). Nestorians, in saying this, are not denying the persons. They even use the word Person in describing the Father, Son and Holy Spirit. However, it is the special characteristics or attributes that set the persons off from one another. This is possibly what Lamsa meant when he described God as "one God with three attributes, instead of three persons" (38). However, even if Lamsa was within the fold of Trinitarianism, his explanation of God would be easily misunderstood by Western Christians and mistaken for modalism."
http://cochise.uia.net/~messiah7/rsr_originJesus.htm

Peace.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Aristibule on July 25, 2006, 06:26:49 AM
Quote
According to Lamsa, the term "three persons" implies three gods to the average Semitic mind, which is why Jews and Muslims have traditionally rejected Trinitarian doctrine.

Which is simply not true - the first Christians were Semitic, and those same Christians had no problem with "three persons", which is why Middle Eastern Orthodox and Catholics have traditionally defended Trinitarian dogma (note, not doctrine - but *dogma*).

Also, the Greek concept 'person' does *not* mean 'substance' in English (that would be confusing prosopon with ousion.) It shows not only an ignorance of Greek, but especially an ignorance of English.

If one doesn't use the word Trinity, and refuses that there is One God in three persons, they they are not a Trinitarian. What Lamsa was: a user of slick sophistry to sell his own Protestant ideology. Not for nothing his works and considered cultic.

Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Αριστοκλής on July 25, 2006, 06:48:30 AM

Also, the Greek concept 'person' does *not* mean 'substance' in English (that would be confusing prosopon with ousion.) It shows not only an ignorance of Greek, but especially an ignorance of English.


However, 'hypostasis' (ηπο- στασiς -sp?) does mean 'sub-stance' as in basis or underfooting. "Person" really confuses the meaning. "Substance" as in material makeup is όυσια.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: choirfiend on July 25, 2006, 10:11:36 AM
Is there any place where we can give up modern technology and live like the first-century Christians?


Yes. Go to PA, OH, or MO, and be Amish

And while you're there, give up any modern mediciene, contract a simple cold, and die from it. Because that's what you would have done in the first century.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Αριστοκλής on July 25, 2006, 10:27:01 AM

Yes. Go to PA, OH, or MO, and be Amish

And while you're there, give up any modern mediciene, contract a simple cold, and die from it. Because that's what you would have done in the first century.

And, of course, your computer and the Internet  ;D
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Anastasios on July 25, 2006, 10:32:23 AM
While you're in India hanging out, make sure to drink some cow urine mixed with ghee (clarified butter). It's what those noble poor people do to get those special divine blessings.

Anastasios
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Matthew777 on July 25, 2006, 04:18:19 PM
And while you're there, give up any modern mediciene, contract a simple cold, and die from it. Because that's what you would have done in the first century.

What is so wrong with death? Isn't it nothing more than the passage into another life?
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Matthew777 on July 25, 2006, 04:19:47 PM
If one doesn't use the word Trinity, and refuses that there is One God in three persons, they they are not a Trinitarian. What Lamsa was: a user of slick sophistry to sell his own Protestant ideology. Not for nothing his works and considered cultic.
Lamsa probably was a Trinitarian, even though he disliked the word "Trinity." To dislike a word does not mean that one disagrees with the concept behind the word. St. Augustine disliked the word "persons" when speaking of the Trinity...

Peace.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Elisha on July 25, 2006, 04:37:51 PM
Lamsa probably was a Trinitarian, even though he disliked the word "Trinity." To dislike a word does not mean that one disagrees with the concept behind the word. St. Augustine disliked the word "persons" when speaking of the Trinity. He thought it was too easy to misunderstand the word and think of it as meaning separate individuals, therefore destroying the divine unity of the Godhead.

Probably?  Probably?  Riiiiiiiight.  C'mon Matthew, you're just trying interpret Lamsa how you want to because you like him.  "Probably" doesn't cut it.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Matthew777 on July 25, 2006, 05:14:15 PM
Probably?ÂÂ  Probably?ÂÂ  Riiiiiiiight.ÂÂ  C'mon Matthew, you're just trying interpret Lamsa how you want to because you like him.ÂÂ  "Probably" doesn't cut it.

I read his books. Had he been a Unitarian, Lamsa would have denied the deity of Christ. Had he been a modalist, he would have denied that the Father and the Son are distinct from each other. This leads one to conclude that, although he disliked Trinitarian language, he believed in Trinitarian doctrine.
You are correct that I like George Lamsa. In a society where most Bible versions are created by Western Protestant translators using questionable manuscripts, it is refreshing to read a Bible translated by an Eastern mind, who belonged to an Eastern church, from an Eastern text.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Aristibule on July 25, 2006, 07:14:13 PM
That is pretty ignorant to say of St. Augustine - first, as 'person' is an English word, and secondly as St. Augustine uses the Latin term properly translated as 'person' without fault throughout his "On the Trinity". In the same work he praises St. Hilary ( for his work also titled "On the Trinity") regarding the attributes of each person of the Godhead (noting thereby that where St. Hilary and St. Augustine are in agreement is the Orthodox position - the Blessed Trinity, One God in Three Persons, each having attributes (not *being* three attributes.)

But, you're still not admitting the truth about George Lamsa - he left his Eastern Church and adopted Western language, culture, identity, *and religion*. Calvary Missionary Church. Calvary Missionary Church. Calvary Missionary Church. (In case you missed it) - not "Mar ........ Assyrian Church of the East" - but Calvary Missionary Church. Consider also that that the last of his life was as a teacher in the Unity School of Christianity in Lee's Summit Missouri (Unitarian Protestant "Theosophical" leaning organization in the oh-so Semitic land of Missouri.)  The history of George Lamsa's schooling is also that of Western Protestant formation - at least, claiming to have studied at Anglican and Episcopalian schools (and a Jewish school) both abroad and in the USA. Those who have attempted to verify his biography, however, have not been successful in uncovering any evidence of most of his claimed schooling.

His text isn't any more Eastern than the Septuagint (which Christ did have, being Palestinian Jewish and not Babylonian Jewish), he might have been raised as a child in an Eastern church but by choice and product was fully Western (just unorthodox Western.) And his "Eastern mind"? Not evident at all.

Refusing the language is refusing the dogma (and, I note your attempt to lower unchangeable dogma to the level of mutable doctrine - doctrine is simply teaching - which only need be sound. The tripartite persons of the Holy Trinity, however, is a matter of *dogma*. Refusal of language is refusal of the dogma - same with those who refuse Theotokos for other terms.) There is nothing Orthodox or particularly Eastern about Lamsa or his work.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: vasilisl on July 25, 2006, 07:25:02 PM
You are correct that I like George Lamsa. In a society where most Bible versions are created by Western Protestant translators using questionable manuscripts, it is refreshing to read a Bible translated by an Eastern mind, who belonged to an Eastern church, from an Eastern text.

There are bibles out there translated in english certified by the Orthodox Patrirachates. Go to an Orthodox church and get one... You cant get more authentic copy of the bible than those..
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Matthew777 on July 25, 2006, 07:34:08 PM
But, you're still not admitting the truth about George Lamsa - he left his Eastern Church and adopted Western language, culture, identity, *and religion*.

If that is true, was that before or after he translated the Aramaic Bible into English?
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Elisha on July 25, 2006, 07:36:44 PM
This leads one to conclude that, although he disliked Trinitarian language, he believed in Trinitarian doctrine.
You are correct that I like George Lamsa. In a society where most Bible versions are created by Western Protestant translators using questionable manuscripts, it is refreshing to read a Bible translated by an Eastern mind, who belonged to an Eastern church, from an Eastern text.

No, it leads YOU to conclude what you do.  Stop saying Lamsa has an "Eastern Mind" when he really left his faith. ::)
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Aristibule on July 25, 2006, 09:55:10 PM
Quote
If that is true, was that before or after he translated the Aramaic Bible into English?

After. That doesn't even take into account the issues with a singular translator for something as important as Holy Scripture.

George Lamsa -

born 1892 in the period when the Assyrians were dependents of either Anglicans/Presbyterians, Roman Catholics, or Russian Orthodox.

claims rededicated to God with blood from a sacrificed bull, 1904 - leaves for Istanbul shortly after

claims to have received an A.B. from the Abp. of Canterbury's College 1907 (15 years of age.)

claims to have received a PhD equivalant from the same in 1908 (16 years of age.)

left for the West in 1915 (claims while studying at 'Imperial University of Constantinople' - goes to South America, then in British Merchant Marine, then USA

claims to have studied at PECUSA Episcopal Theological Seminary of Virginia and Dropise College in Pennsylvania (first Jewish college in USA, now U. of Penn Center for Judaic Studies.)

founded the syncretist "Christian Mohammedan Society" in 1921 (to spread a hybridization of the two religions.)

publishes article "The Secret of the Near East" in magazine Orientalia 1923 (in which it is claimed Islam has achieved Lamsa's "New World Order"

coauthors "The Oldest Christian People" in 1926.

publishes "My Neighbour Jesus" in 1932.

publishes "Gospel Light" in 1936.

second edition "Gospel Light" in 1939.

founded "Aramaic Bible Society" in 1943

publishes "New Testament Commentary" in 1945.

founded "Calvary Missionary Church" in 1947, publishes "New Testament Origin"

publishes "The Short Koran" in 1949

publishes "Holy Bible: from the ancient Eastern text" in 1957

publishes "Old Testament Light" 1964

begins close association with disciple Rocco Errico 1965.

begins publishing through the Unity School of Christianity, Lee's Summit, MO  in 1966 (where Lamsa kept his office the remainder of his life.)

publishes "More Light on the Gospel" 1968.

his disciple Rocco Errico founds "Noohra Foundation" in 1970 to carry on Lamsa's work.

publishes "Idioms in the Bible Explained" 1971.

coauthors and publishes "The Life of George M. Lamsa Translator" autobiography - no date known for publication.

passed away in 1975, California.

....

I don't have the date for when he began to involve himself with the Association for Research and Enlightenment (Edgar Cayce Institute), or for the involvement with The Way International.

Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Matthew777 on July 26, 2006, 02:01:20 AM
From what I have seen, Lamsa's version is the best complete English translation of the Aramaic Peshitta available. If there is a better one, please show me so that I may search for it.
In the mean time, I consider the Lamsa Bible to be the most accurate Bible I have ever read, and it has rekindled my interest in reading Scripture. Ultimately, the best translation is the one you will actually read, because taking in the Word of God is what really matters.
Heady theological and historical arguments aside, that is what really matters.

Though he may have left the Assyrian Church from which he was raised, he still was in the unique position to undersand the language and culture of Christ and the Apostles, given his upbringing in such a similar cultural background.

Peace.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Elisha on July 26, 2006, 02:29:06 AM
Though he may have left the Assyrian Church from which he was raised, he still was in the unique position to undersand the language and culture of Christ and the Apostles, given his upbringing in such a similar cultural background.

M777, that is the biggest bunch of nonsense I've ever heard.  No one during that time really understood "the language and culture of Christ and the Apostles".  It was not cryogenically frozen for 1900 years.  Even then, he was 15 when left!  15!

Did you know that Benny Hinn is Lebanese and grew up Orthodox?  Why don't you buy whatever he sells then?  Just because he apostacized doesn't mean that his works aren't authentic. ::)

Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Αριστοκλής on July 26, 2006, 03:17:27 AM
Benny Hinn - great... ::) Snake oil salesman.

Just got satelite TV and viewed this guy for the first time. Now I know what you folks have been talking about...sheesh.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Aristibule on July 26, 2006, 03:22:44 PM
Matthew - if you are truly interested in Scripture in a Semitic context, you'll need to dump the Lamsa and learn Syriac. You can get a copy of the Scriptures here: http://www.syrianorthodoxchurch.org/library/Books/bookstore.htm (http://www.syrianorthodoxchurch.org/library/Books/bookstore.htm) - a Holy Bible in Syriac is about $25 USD - get a Syriac grammar (not too difficult to find, use Amazon.)

The fact about translation into English of the Scriptures is that the English are not Asians. God in his Providence sets the times and places of man's habitation - and for the English, this has meant the Scriptures used in English would be based upon LXX and Latin Vulgate for the most part. The Orthodox Church uses a number of authoritative translations without finding much fault (full King James 1611, Douay-Rheims, Revised Standard Version - often in the Oxford Annotated printing, Nelson's LXX-corrected NKJV "Orthodox Study Bible", even the Buena Vista new translation.) If one is in English speaking culture, this is the Scripture as we've received it (and, Lamsa isn't a part of that - scholars don't use his Bible, but who does is instructive: Jehovah's Witnesses, The Way International, and a number of other cults.)

If you really desire to be part of Eastern culture, then you'll have to make the break with English now - quit using a translation and learn the Syriac (and, since you're in a Malankara parish, maybe even Malayalam.) I'm not sure about your chances for marrying in - Indian families have high standards - both in family background, education, and career success. But, using an English idiomatic translation isn't going to help you develop any sense of Semitic Christianity like a Semitic language does. (That, and Syriac isn't that hard - I can read much of it just from my Hebrew - though as Eastern Orthodox, I just happen to have access to both the Liturgical Tradition and Scriptures in Hebrew - both translated in the 19th c. from the authoritative LXX and Byzantine texts, and thus holding to the superior Old Hebrew readings, the texts preserved in the Levant,and the liturgical use of Palestine's monasteries.) The Lamsa agenda doesn't really help - neither for becoming Orthodox, nor for how it might reflect on the Malankara Archdiocese (I've yet to see that Archbishop H.E. Mor Titus Yeldho Pathickal supports Lamsa's teaching - might be important for the Patriarch and other Orthodox to know?)
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Ebor on July 27, 2006, 09:51:49 AM

Yes. Go to PA, OH, or MO, and be Amish

To be fair to the Amish they aren't living in "first Century" conditions and they do use some modern medicine.  There is actually some fascinating information about genetic diseases in small populations that has come from them letting doctors do research in helping them.  I read about it recently in, I think, Scientific American.

If Matthew777 wants to help people who are need it there are the intinerant farmworkers who travel around harvesting.  That can be pretty bad in terms of living.  There are people in his own area, I'll wager

Ebor

Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Ebor on July 27, 2006, 09:52:40 AM
See Bauer & Trudgill, Language Myths (http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/0140260234/christorculve-20/104-2002403-8111902?%5Fencoding=UTF8&camp=1789&link%5Fcode=xm2) (Penguin, 1999)

Thank you for the link.  That book looks fascinating.

Ebor
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Ebor on July 27, 2006, 09:59:13 AM
What is so wrong with death? Isn't it nothing more than the passage into another life?

Would you be able to say that to a woman whose child is dying for want of a vaccination or a few cents worth of medicine or nutrients? Or to one dying of "Child bed fever" that could be cured with antibiotics or prevented with some cleanliness so that she will leave a motherless newborn?   We all will die, but God gave us the intelligence and ability to help others with illness or malnutrition or injury.  Declaring that "modern technology" is to be avoided begs the question of "Which technology?  Why?"

Ebor
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Matthew777 on July 27, 2006, 05:02:05 PM
Matthew - if you are truly interested in Scripture in a Semitic context, you'll need to dump the Lamsa and learn Syriac.

What I am asking you is whether there is a better English translation of the Aramaic Bible than George Lamsa's. James Murdock's translation of the Western Peshitto is available on Amazon:
http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/0971598681/ref=sr_11_1/102-6334926-0472955?ie=UTF8

Would you consider that a more accurate translation than the Lamsa Bible?
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Aristibule on July 27, 2006, 05:15:24 PM
Yes - that translation is more trustworthy (I can't vouch for it being 'perfect' - I'm not on that level.) Note it is sold by the Syriac Orthodox Church. Dr. George Kiraz does have a good reputation that I know of - interesting that http://gorgiaspress.com/ (http://gorgiaspress.com/) doesn't carry Lamsa, eh? More importantly, through the same press you can get the tools to learn Syriac, and study the Scriptures in Syriac.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Αριστοκλής on July 30, 2006, 05:54:08 AM
Just some side comments here.

While rummaging through my deceased mother's-in-law cellar yesterday I found a copy of Lamsa's bible - seventh edition. A surprising coincidence to me.

Perusing it I was immediately struck that it exactly followed the canon as presented in the protestant KJV   ???.  That seemed most odd.
This morning I spent some time comparing Lamsa's translation to a couple other Peshitta translations (partial) as I have been able to gather off the Internet over the years. Seems there are numerous differences between these... a lot of them.

I'll just stick with the Orthodox Church's recognized bible, thanks.

Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Matthew777 on July 30, 2006, 08:56:02 AM
[quote author=Αριστοκλής link=topic=9572.msg129803#msg129803 date=1154253248]
I'll just stick with the Orthodox Church's recognized bible, thanks.
[/quote]

Which one is that? As far as I can recall, there is not yet a complete English translation of the Orthodox Bible.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Αριστοκλής on July 30, 2006, 11:19:18 AM
Which one is that? As far as I can recall, there is not yet a complete English translation of the Orthodox Bible.

Where did I say Orthodox 'translation'?

Learn Greek, then form an opinion, if you must.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Matthew777 on July 31, 2006, 12:51:14 AM
[quote author=Αριστοκλής link=topic=9572.msg129810#msg129810 date=1154272758]
Learn Greek, then form an opinion, if you must.
[/quote]

Aaahhhh... Too bad I dropped out of Greek school...
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Romans13x10 on December 17, 2009, 01:27:48 AM
I don't believe the Assyrian Church of the East even teaches the heretical "trinitarian" theology of Lamsa.  They accept the council of Nicea.  I think they even consider Sts Gregory the Theologian, Gregory of Nyssa, and Basil, as saints if I remember correctly?
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Rafa999 on December 17, 2009, 02:05:59 AM
The Best existing interlinear (not translation- these are frowned upon by the COE) is that of Deacon Paul Younan of Peshitta.org

Unfortunately it is incomplete. Some time is needed to complete the epistles. You must learn Syriac/Aramaic to be able to read the Peshitta in its original. As a strong believer in Aramaic primacy of the New Testament (a position which I hope won't get me stoned here in an Orthodox church forum) you can only read the original in its original language. The COE is trinitarian, but it does not accept the terminology of the Western Church in its creeds. It believes in Christ having two natures bound in one person, but not the "Nestorian" thing the Copts and others say they do.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Salpy on December 17, 2009, 02:34:32 AM
It believes in Christ having two natures bound in one person, but not the "Nestorian" thing the Copts and others say they do.

I'm aware that--contrary to popular belief--the COE doesn't teach "two persons."  However, I would like your explanation of something which was touched on in another thread (starting at reply 92):

http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,20533.msg356711.html#msg356711

In that thread, I brought up something I saw in a catechism of the COE:


"35)   In what sense can we recognize or acknowledge certain theological terminology used by our beloved sister apostolic churches who will address The Ever Virgin Mary as “The Mother of God”??

The Orthodox position will declare this: The Blessed Mother did not give birth to His Godhead, which is from eternal; but rather she had given birth to His manhood, at the end of time, still it is right to be called “the Mother of God,” why?  Because He who is born of her is at once God and Man. By way of example: The mother of the President of the United States did not give birth to his presidency, she gave birth to the man; and indeed we call her the mother of the President; and again, the Catholicos Patriarch of the East received his office from The Church, and not from his mother who bore him, and we do call her the mother of the Patriarch."


This is from Chapter 10, section 35, of the catechism:

http://www.acoeyouth.org/Learn/catechism/cat.html

What struck me was the language which seemed to be comparing the relationship between Christ's divinity and humanity to the relationship between the President and his presidency, or the Patriarch and his office.

I'm pretty sure the OO's would never use language like the above.  It seems to express too loose of a union between Christ's divinity and humanity.  I don't think the EO's would be comfortable with it either (perhaps someone can correct me if I'm wrong.)

Could you shed some light on this?  I guess I am trying to understand your church better.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Rafa999 on December 17, 2009, 02:55:11 AM
     I am not fluent in Syriac but I assure you that the COE is not Arian or the "Nestorian" parody people have claimed for centuries. We are talking about perhaps the most ancient semitic church (one of the most ancient for sure), which stresses a clear distinction between the divine nature of the Messiah and his human nature. "Your will be done, not mine" to paraphrase Jesus's famous words in the Garden of Gethsemane. The COE, being a very conservative body which does not want the scriptures to become the opinions and works of man, does not use language which is non-semitic based when describing its Christology. The COE does not call Mary "Theotokos" since Mary gave birth to the humanity not the divinity. The Holy Spirit crafted a human body, a "Temple" for God, but the humanity and Divinity are separate. To refuse to acknowledge the difference is to worship a Man-God in the Greek pagan tradition. Man/God=scriptural, Man-God where the divinity and humanity are fused and God became something neither human nor something divine is not so. Of course some people like the Copts believe in this absurdity, but well, most folks are Orthodox and not Monophysite like them.

Understand now? By the way Salpy, Armenians and Assyrians are most excellent friends and often frequent each others churches even though canons forbid this.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Salpy on December 17, 2009, 03:08:40 AM
Man-God where the divinity and humanity are fused and God became something neither human nor something divine is not so.

I think both OO's and EO's would agree with that.

Quote
Understand now? By the way Salpy, Armenians and Assyrians are most excellent friends and often frequent each others churches even though canons forbid this.

That is definitely the case.  I have Assyrian friends and relatives, although none of them belong to the COE.

I've mentioned in other threads how there is a lot of intermarriage between Armenians and Assyrians and how Armenians and Assyrians often do go to each other's churches.  Both nations suffered greatly during the Genocide of 1915 and relations are very warm between us.

That's one reason I don't want you to think I am being polemical or unfriendly in asking questions about your Church.  I really am just trying to understand better.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Salpy on December 17, 2009, 03:14:44 AM
     Mary gave birth to the humanity not the divinity. The Holy Spirit crafted a human body, a "Temple" for God, but the humanity and Divinity are separate.

Again, I think my Church would be uncomfortable with this language.

Quote
Of course some people like the Copts believe in this absurdity, but well, most folks are Orthodox and not Monophysite like them.

The Copts are not really Monophysites.  That is a misconception, similar to the misconception that Assyrians believe in two persons.   :)
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Papist on December 17, 2009, 10:39:27 AM
    I am not fluent in Syriac but I assure you that the COE is not Arian or the "Nestorian" parody people have claimed for centuries. We are talking about perhaps the most ancient semitic church (one of the most ancient for sure), which stresses a clear distinction between the divine nature of the Messiah and his human nature. "Your will be done, not mine" to paraphrase Jesus's famous words in the Garden of Gethsemane. The COE, being a very conservative body which does not want the scriptures to become the opinions and works of man, does not use language which is non-semitic based when describing its Christology. The COE does not call Mary "Theotokos" since Mary gave birth to the humanity not the divinity. The Holy Spirit crafted a human body, a "Temple" for God, but the humanity and Divinity are separate. To refuse to acknowledge the difference is to worship a Man-God in the Greek pagan tradition. Man/God=scriptural, Man-God where the divinity and humanity are fused and God became something neither human nor something divine is not so. Of course some people like the Copts believe in this absurdity, but well, most folks are Orthodox and not Monophysite like them.

Understand now? By the way Salpy, Armenians and Assyrians are most excellent friends and often frequent each others churches even though canons forbid this.
You have to be very careful with the bolded statement above. It can be dangerous to say that the humanity and divinity are separate. They are truely distinct BUT they are not separated because they are united in one person. They do not mix and form a hybrid nature, but but "the word became flesh". As for the Theotokos, is not Christ God? If he is then Mary must be the Theotokos.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: ialmisry on December 17, 2009, 11:07:06 AM
I'm pretty sure the OO's would never use language like the above.  It seems to express too loose of a union between Christ's divinity and humanity.  I don't think the EO's would be comfortable with it either (perhaps someone can correct me if I'm wrong.)

No, you are not wrong: the EO wouldn't.  As St. Cyril points out, the ideas expressed here would mean that God did not empty Himself out (kenosis) as St. Paul claims in Phillippians, but rather God raised a man to His level.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Rafa999 on December 17, 2009, 04:28:09 PM
I just said the Assyrian church of the East does NOT believe in that Arian garbage. You must read the New Testament in Aramaic to understand fully its positions. The COE believes the humanity of the Messiah was sacrificed. Not his divinity or do you believe the entire trinity died??? The COE does not believe God at any one instance in time changed his divinity, much less that it fused with the nature of a human being into some sort of frankenstein thing neither human nor God, but a man-God in the Greek pagan tradition (Eutychianism). The COE is the last Church to retain the New Testament in Aramaic which is the language of the Messiah, and it will not change any of its terminology which is all New Testament based to fit the opinions of man (whosoever present another Gospel, let him  be khrim....) The Aramaic NT says Qnome not persons. Persons and qnome are not synonyms, there really is no direct translation. Hypostases is the best translation I can think of Qnome. Last, if Copts are not monophysite they would agree to Chalcedon and stop saying Assyrians arent Christians (dont care what Cyril has to say either).
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: minasoliman on December 17, 2009, 04:30:11 PM
I think the dialogue between the Assyrians and the OO's that went on need to be thrown out and start all over.  The Coptic Church felt that they were defrauded not once, but many times in the dialogues.  Perhaps one can get a sense of understanding in these dialogues when one finds out NOW that the leader of these dialogues Metropolitan Mar Bawai Soro, has now left the Assyrian Church and joined the Roman Catholic Church.

Perhaps Mar Bawai was being dishonest in his talks with the OO's.  I don't know.  But one thing for sure, one of the things our Metropolitan His Emminence (HE) Bishoy was quite annoyed by was when Mar Bawai wanted to give an analogy of understanding of Assyrian Christology with that of Cyrillian Christology:

Quote
I was an observer in the dialogue and discussed with Metropolitan Bawai Soro the concept of the persons in Christ distinct in thought alone. He said “as you (the Oriental Orthodox) accept that two natures were united in one incarnate nature of God the Logos and the two distinct in thought alone, we also consider two persons forming one person of the union and distinct in thought alone”. At this stage I told him since we do not dissolve the two natures after the union you cannot dissolve the persons in one after the union and the two persons will continue to exist in the union even if they are distinct in thought alone. Consequently we are going to have four persons in heaven instead of the three persons of the Holy Trinity.

http://www.metroplit-bishoy.org/files/Dialogues/Assyrians/siteassyr.doc

If this is true, even though the Assyrians may say that they don't believe in "two persons," Mar Bawai gave the Coptic Church that impression.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Papist on December 17, 2009, 04:45:00 PM
I just said the Assyrian church of the East does NOT believe in that Arian garbage. You must read the New Testament in Aramaic to understand fully its positions. The COE believes the humanity of the Messiah was sacrificed. Not his divinity or do you believe the entire trinity died??? The COE does not believe God at any one instance in time changed his divinity, much less that it fused with the nature of a human being into some sort of frankenstein thing neither human nor God, but a man-God in the Greek pagan tradition (Eutychianism). The COE is the last Church to retain the New Testament in Aramaic which is the language of the Messiah, and it will not change any of its terminology which is all New Testament based to fit the opinions of man (whosoever present another Gospel, let him  be khrim....) The Aramaic NT says Qnome not persons. Persons and qnome are not synonyms, there really is no direct translation. Hypostases is the best translation I can think of Qnome. Last, if Copts are not monophysite they would agree to Chalcedon and stop saying Assyrians arent Christians (dont care what Cyril has to say either).
So is Christ one person or two?
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Papist on December 17, 2009, 04:45:33 PM
I just said the Assyrian church of the East does NOT believe in that Arian garbage. You must read the New Testament in Aramaic to understand fully its positions. The COE believes the humanity of the Messiah was sacrificed. Not his divinity or do you believe the entire trinity died??? The COE does not believe God at any one instance in time changed his divinity, much less that it fused with the nature of a human being into some sort of frankenstein thing neither human nor God, but a man-God in the Greek pagan tradition (Eutychianism). The COE is the last Church to retain the New Testament in Aramaic which is the language of the Messiah, and it will not change any of its terminology which is all New Testament based to fit the opinions of man (whosoever present another Gospel, let him  be khrim....) The Aramaic NT says Qnome not persons. Persons and qnome are not synonyms, there really is no direct translation. Hypostases is the best translation I can think of Qnome. Last, if Copts are not monophysite they would agree to Chalcedon and stop saying Assyrians arent Christians (dont care what Cyril has to say either).
We are pretty certain that almost all of the New Testament was written in Greek, not Aramaic.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: ialmisry on December 17, 2009, 04:53:56 PM
I just said the Assyrian church of the East does NOT believe in that Arian garbage. You must read the New Testament in Aramaic to understand fully its positions.

I do read Aramaic, but I think you mean Syriac (which I also read).  Since, however, Theodoret and of course Nestorius expressed himself in Greek also, we can't chalk this up to faulty translation.  Further, the Syriac Orthodox read the New Testament in Aramaic/Syriac, and they are in full agreement with the Copts, and I would say, us EO, in upholding St. Cyril's teaching and objections on the matter.

Quote
The COE believes the humanity of the Messiah was sacrificed. Not his divinity or do you believe the entire trinity died???

We believe that God purchased the Church with His Own Blood. Acts 20:28.

ܐܙܕܗܪܘ ܗܟܝܠ ܒܢܦܫܟܘܢ ܘܒܟܠܗ ܡܪܥܝܬܐ ܗܝ ܕܐܩܝܡܟܘܢ ܒܗ ܪܘܚܐ ܕܩܘܕܫܐ ܐܦܤܩܘܦܐ ܕܬܪܥܘܢ ܠܥܕܬܗ ܕܐܠܗܐ ܗܝ ܕܩܢܗ ܒܕܡܗ

Quote
The COE does not believe God at any one instance in time changed his divinity, much less that it fused with the nature of a human being into some sort of frankenstein thing neither human nor God, but a man-God in the Greek pagan tradition (Eutychianism).

Both God and Man in One Christ, with co-mingling, confusion, admixture or seperation.

Quote
The COE is the last Church to retain the New Testament in Aramaic

Actually, no.  The COE uses Syriac, which the Syriac Orthodox Church also uses.  I've been to Ma'lula, where the Orthodox there still speak Aramaic (not Syriac).  And to give credit where credit is do, there are also, for instance, some Maronite towns where Aramaic is still used, and the Maronites as a whole still use it alongside Arabic.

Quote
which is the language of the Messiah,

But the language of the NT is Greek.

Quote
and it will not change any of its terminology which is all New Testament based to fit the opinions of man (whosoever present another Gospel, let him  be khrim....) The Aramaic NT says Qnome not persons.

Where does the Aramaic (or the Syriac) NT say Qnome?

Quote
Persons and qnome are not synonyms, there really is no direct translation. Hypostases is the best translation I can think of Qnome.

I'll reserve comment here.

Quote
Last, if Copts are not monophysite they would agree to Chalcedon and stop saying Assyrians arent Christians (dont care what Cyril has to say either).

The Orthodox care quite a lot.  And the Copts aren't Monophysite.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: simplygermain on December 17, 2009, 05:49:04 PM
Funny - I didn't know you knew most Protestants, at least they haven't mentioned you. ;)

What I am speaking of is Protestant Biblical scholars, most taking for granted that the Greek is the original text. That depends on who you read, so "most" is subjective.

The Nestorians are seen a sort of 'proto-Protestants' by many as many of the things Protestants hate Roman Catholicism and Eastern Orthodoxy for are lacking with the Nestorians

The Assyrian Church of the East to which George Lamsa belonged is not Nestorian in its Christology, that is a strawmen often made against them, and Lamsa himself. However, I would be open to contrary evidence.

In discussion with an Assembly of God minister about just this subject during the first week of July, I made the suggestion that learning Western Syriac and reading the Peshitto would be more reliable (note, not the Nestorian Peshitta.)

with no car, and I'll tell you, living in a canvas Yurt a mile from your nearest neighbor and 5 miles from the General Store, is no cup of tea. I chopped my wood every morning for my wood stove, even in the snow, went potty in an outhouse, and my water came from the creek next to the Yurt. I will be the first to admit that it was some of the best time in my life (while I was single) , but also a very hard way to live. I would not have wanted to do it for the rest of my life, since becoming a monk was distracted by my wife, and kids were becoming the new topic. I could not have put my family through it. Maybe you could think for a minute, about trying out some of that lifestyle in the States before running into a much harder scenario. I have known people who did what you propose and fell to all sorts of dangers and distractions.

I felt the same way as you when I was newly converting from Rasta, and may have some insights into what you are seeking which the others do not. If you wish to PM me, we can talk.



Fixed quote tags...  - PtA
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: PeterTheAleut on December 17, 2009, 07:07:05 PM
You must read the New Testament in Aramaic to understand fully its positions.
Did not the Disciples who received the Holy Spirit at Pentecost speak in many different tongues?  Was not the New Testament written by those so enlightened at Pentecost and compiled by the Church that was born of this Pentecost event?  How, then, can you so limit the revelation of God to just one language, especially when it can be shown that this one language you tout wasn't even the majority language of the Gospels and Epistles of the Apostles?
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Rafa999 on December 17, 2009, 08:28:30 PM
To answer:

The COE views the Father, Son, and Ruach as qnome of the same kyana, rather than as hypostases sharing the same homoousious. It is much more intuitive than the Greek. It is ancient semitic based terminology used by the Messiah. What's good for the Messiah, Abraham, and the Prophets is good for me.

Second, I dont believe the New Testament was written in Greek despite all Western "scholarly" claims to the contrary (like Bruce Metzger knows more than the Patriarch of Babylon on the origin of these holy texts. Sure...)  The Chaldean Catholic Church supposedly even had an autograph written by Mar Mari and Addai with them showing that the original was Aramaic. Go here: http://www.peshitta.org/ to read In Estrangelo (Eastern Syriac) the Peshitta. Further, we know Papias said that because of persecution most of the originals were lost in the Western world as people "translated best they could". This is too profound a topic and should be reserved for another time though. Please go to the website I listed if interested since it only debates Peshitta primacy.

Third, you mentioned Acts 20:28. Ancient COE manuscripts expressly show that unscrupulous Monophysite scribes altered Acts 20:28 and Hebrews 2:9 from the original readings right after the Nestorius controversy. Here is the original reading of Acts 20:28 (see links, one is to the Khabouris Codex):

http://dukhrana.com/peshitta/msviewer.php?ms=1&id=312
http://dukhrana.com/peshitta/msviewer.php?ms=2&id=312

the MESSIAH purchased the Church with his own blood. God does not have blood (though he owns all the blood in the world and accepted the blood of his precious son as a most holy Qurbana, ie: sin offering of the highest order), it is blasphemy to suggest that an invisible spirit fused with a human nature to produce blood and that the creator "died" ceased to exist and left the universe in disrepair. This simply cannot happen. It is Orthodox to believe that the Messiah died and was ressurected by the holy Spirit indwelling within him.

There is a Western Peshitta used by the Syriac Orthodox Church and the EASTERN version which was untampered. Who is right? I say the Eastern tradition not the Western is right. The COE grew up in the Persian empire where nobody could tell it what to do. So its manuscript tradition is more reliable than that of the Syriac Orthodox Church which was influenced by the Byzantine sphere and "robber synods" like that of Ephesus.

Anyways, I just want to say that the COE is actually very similar to the Orthodox Church but uses different terminology overall. The two pivotal differences I already gave you - Hebrews 2:9 and Acts 20:28 have different readings in Eastern Syriac, further the COE does not accept the canonicity of the last five NT books and the pericope adultera (story of the adultress in the Gospel of John). This diagram will help you out in understanding COE Christology:

(http://dukhrana.com/images/kyana_qnoma_parsopa.gif)

As for Qnome in Eastern Syriac, just read the NT at http://www.peshitta.org/ for countless instances.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Salpy on December 17, 2009, 09:09:58 PM
it is blasphemy to suggest that an invisible spirit fused with a human nature to produce blood and that the creator "died" ceased to exist and left the universe in disrepair. This simply cannot happen.

You need to realize that neither the Eastern Orthodox (EO) nor the Oriental Orthodox (OO), including the Coptic Church believe anything like that.  When we say that the Incarnate Word of God suffered in the flesh and tasted death in the flesh (See St. Cyril's 12th anathema and the EO's Fifth Council,) we are expressing the reality of the union of divinity and humanity in the Incarnation.  We don't believe that God the Word ever ceased to exist. 

You don't seem to understand our beliefs.  Perhaps it is good that you are here, then, so that we can understand each other better.   :)


Quote
It is Orthodox to believe that the Messiah died and was ressurected by the holy Spirit indwelling within him.

Are you saying that Christ had to rely on the Holy Spirit to be raised from the dead; that He did not have the power Himself to do so?  How would that make Christ's Resurrection different from that of Lazarus?
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Andrew21091 on December 17, 2009, 09:17:05 PM
Second, I dont believe the New Testament was written in Greek despite all Western "scholarly" claims to the contrary (like Bruce Metzger knows more than the Patriarch of Babylon on the origin of these holy texts. Sure...)

It more likely that the Epistles were written in Greek. St. Paul's letters were written mainly to the Gentile Churches who spoke Greek. Why would Paul write to them in Aramaic? At Pentecost, the Apostles were given the gift of toungues in order to preach the Gospel to all nations in their own language. The Church decided that the Gentiles did not have to become Jewish before they could be Christian so I don't think that they would have to learn Aramaic to read the letters St. Paul wrote. St. Luke the Evangelist was a Greek as well so I don't see why he would write his Gospel in Aramaic. It seems unlikely that the Epistles were written in Aramaic.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: PeterTheAleut on December 17, 2009, 09:19:17 PM
To answer:

The COE views the Father, Son, and Ruach as qnome of the same kyana, rather than as hypostases sharing the same homoousious. It is much more intuitive than the Greek. It is ancient semitic based terminology used by the Messiah. What's good for the Messiah, Abraham, and the Prophets is good for me.
But what about the Apostles?  Do you ignore the fact that the Messiah commissioned them to preach His Gospel to all the nations (Matthew 28:18-20)?  Do you ignore the fact that, after the Holy Spirit descended upon them in accordance with the Messiah's promise in John 14:25-26, the Apostles did preach and the people who embraced their faith devoted themselves to their teaching (Acts 2:42)?

Second, I dont believe the New Testament was written in Greek despite all Western "scholarly" claims to the contrary (like Bruce Metzger knows more than the Patriarch of Babylon on the origin of these holy texts. Sure...)
What makes the Patriarch of Babylon a more trustworthy authority than Bruce Metzger on this question?

The Chaldean Catholic Church supposedly even had an autograph written by Mar Mari and Addai with them showing that the original was Aramaic. Go here: http://www.peshitta.org/ to read In Estrangelo (Eastern Syriac) the Peshitta.
What good does that do me?  I can't read Aramaic.

What good would an Aramaic New Testament have accomplished with an audience that largely spoke and read Greek?

Further, we know Papias said that because of persecution most of the originals were lost in the Western world as people "translated best they could".
Can you post a link to any source that documents Papias saying this?

This is too profound a topic and should be reserved for another time though. Please go to the website I listed if interested since it only debates Peshitta primacy.

Third, you mentioned Acts 20:28. Ancient COE manuscripts expressly show that unscrupulous Monophysite scribes altered Acts 20:28 and Hebrews 2:9 from the original readings right after the Nestorius controversy.
So where are these "ancient manuscripts"?  Can you point us to them so we can read them for ourselves and not blindly take your word on what they say?

Here is the original reading of Acts 20:28 (see links, one is to the Khabouris Codex):

http://dukhrana.com/peshitta/msviewer.php?ms=1&id=312
http://dukhrana.com/peshitta/msviewer.php?ms=2&id=312
Again, what good are they without an English translation that I and most any poster on this forum can read?

the MESSIAH purchased the Church with his own blood. God does not have blood (though he owns all the blood in the world and accepted the blood of his precious son as a most holy Qurbana, ie: sin offering of the highest order), it is blasphemy to suggest that an invisible spirit fused with a human nature to produce blood and that the creator "died" ceased to exist and left the universe in disrepair.
Do you honestly think we believe that garbage? ???

This simply cannot happen. It is Orthodox to believe that the Messiah died and was ressurected by the holy Spirit indwelling within him.

There is a Western Peshitta used by the Syriac Orthodox Church and the EASTERN version which was untampered. Who is right? I say the Eastern tradition not the Western is right. The COE grew up in the Persian empire where nobody could tell it what to do. So its manuscript tradition is more reliable than that of the Syriac Orthodox Church which was influenced by the Byzantine sphere and "robber synods" like that of Ephesus.

Anyways, I just want to say that the COE is actually very similar to the Orthodox Church but uses different terminology overall. The two pivotal differences I already gave you - Hebrews 2:9 and Acts 20:28 have different readings in Eastern Syriac, further the COE does not accept the canonicity of the last five NT books and the pericope adultera (story of the adultress in the Gospel of John). This diagram will help you out in understanding COE Christology:

(http://dukhrana.com/images/kyana_qnoma_parsopa.gif)

As for Qnome in Eastern Syriac, just read the NT at http://www.peshitta.org/ for countless instances.
Again, can the faith be confined to mere words?  It seems to me from your arguments on this thread that you think so.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Rafa999 on December 17, 2009, 10:02:17 PM
Phew, lots of questions. Well let me start with a reference to Mar Papia's work:

http://www.monachos.net/content/patristics/patristictexts/191-papias-fragments

go to fragment 6 of this translation of what is left of his Exposition of the Oracles of our Lord and you will see that he believed the Gospels were originally written in "Hebrew" and people did the best they could to translate. It was very common for the Western Fathers not fluent in Hebrew or Aramaic to confuse the two languages. Eusebius did this several times. We also know Hegesippus was acquainted with the Syriac text of the Peshitta. Anyways, Aramaic primacy/Peshitta primacy is a heavy subject and it is best if you go to peshitta.org to read by yourselves on this since it is very draining for a person not fully qualified to teach on these texts (such as myself) to be the sole authority you guys can access on their history. Please speak to the site mantainer, the Deacon Paul Younan, read his interlinear.

Somebody asked why so few Peshitta translations. There are actually several translations, but it is the opinion of the COE that God does not put his blessing on translating the text since every time this happens something goes wrong (witness Lamsa, monophysites altering scripture, judaizing movements, Roman Catholics altering readings, etc.) So the COE never authorizes any translation, you must learn syriac.

Also why is the Patriarch of Babylon (Seleukia-Ctesiphon) more reliable than Bruce Metzger? Well you guys already know the answer- because of laying on of hands ,apostolic succession,  because he has the proper chain of transmission of these sacred doctrines while protestants weren't there 2000 years ago hearing St.Peter talk in Babylon, nor did Bruce Metzger receive the priesthood from the 2 disciples Addai and Mar Mari. These offices are given by God himself and stipulate that the COE is an apostolic church with apostolic founders while Metzger talks of himself.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: PeterTheAleut on December 17, 2009, 10:15:37 PM
Phew, lots of questions. Well let me start with a reference to Mar Papia's work:

http://www.monachos.net/content/patristics/patristictexts/191-papias-fragments

go to fragment 6 of this translation of what is left of his Exposition of the Oracles of our Lord and you will see that he believed the Gospels were originally written in "Hebrew" and people did the best they could to translate.
CORRECTION:  According to the source you just referenced, Papias said this only of the Gospel of Matthew.

"Wherefore Mark made no mistake in thus writing some things as he remembered them. For of one thing he took especial care, not to omit anything he had heard, and not to put anything fictitious into the statements. [This is what is related by Papias regarding Mark; but with regard to Matthew he has made the following statements]: Matthew put together the oracles [of the Lord] in the Hebrew language, and each one interpreted them as best he could." (from Fragment 6)

It was very common for the Western Fathers not fluent in Hebrew or Aramaic to confuse the two languages. Eusebius did this several times. We also know Hegesippus was acquainted with the Syriac text of the Peshitta. Anyways, Aramaic primacy/Peshitta primacy is a heavy subject and it is best if you go to peshitta.org to read by yourselves on this since it is very draining for a person not fully qualified to teach on these texts (such as myself) to be the sole authority you guys can access on their history. Please speak to the site mantainer, the Deacon Paul Younan, read his interlinear.

Somebody asked why so few Peshitta translations. There are actually several translations, but it is the opinion of the COE that God does not put his blessing on translating the text since every time this happens something goes wrong (witness Lamsa, monophysites altering scripture, judaizing movements, Roman Catholics altering readings, etc.) So the COE never authorizes any translation, you must learn syriac.

Also why is the Patriarch of Babylon (Seleukia-Ctesiphon) more reliable than Bruce Metzger? Well you guys already know the answer- because of laying on of hands ,apostolic succession,  because he has the proper chain of transmission of these sacred doctrines while protestants weren't there 2000 years ago hearing St.Peter talk in Babylon, nor did Bruce Metzger receive the priesthood from the 2 disciples Addai and Mar Mari. These offices are given by God himself and stipulate that the COE is an apostolic church with apostolic founders while Metzger talks of himself.
But you don't trust the Holy Spirit, who gave the gift of foreign tongues to the Apostles, to properly oversee the translation of sacred texts so those untrained in Syriac can understand them?
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Andrew21091 on December 17, 2009, 10:19:28 PM
So, the Christian Faith is only for those who know Aramaic/Syriac?
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Rafa999 on December 17, 2009, 10:26:52 PM
Well guys, its just the opinion of the COE that these texts are in danger of becoming the works of men, thus it is better to "targum" the text in peoples language, but not cannot allow translations to ever substitute the original (giving authorization to a translation would be part of that process). I believe there's nothing wrong in reading the Gospel in your own tongue and that as long as a translation is not deliberately deceptive like that of a JW or a Mormon its ok, but there's that danger of the text becoming "standardized" into the mold some group wants it to be in. There are nuances in the Aramaic which cannot be translated to full fidelity in any language. Take words like "Miltha" or "Qnome"...better leave untranslated. Think about the number of revisions the King James bible has undergone and you will see that no translation can ever live up to the original.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Andrew21091 on December 17, 2009, 10:35:45 PM
Take words like "Miltha" or "Qnome"...better leave untranslated. Think about the number of revisions the King James bible has undergone and you will see that no translation can ever live up to the original.

I think I understand what you mean. "Miltha" is "Logos" in Greek which is a pretty complex word which has been translated as "Word" in most Bibles. I don't like "Word" since "Logos" is much more complex as I'm sure "Miltha" is a as well. The New Testament I have which is printed by a Greek monastery decided not to translate it which I think is the best idea. I think with "Word" many Protestants think that it is talking about the Scripture and that the Scripture is in some way divine or something. I can see your point how a lot can be mistranslated and taken out of context.

Though, our views differ since I believe that the New Testament was originally Greek with the exception of St. Matthews Gospel which was clearly written to Jewish readers whom he pointed out was the Messiah that the Prophets wrote about and that Christ fulfilled the Law and Prophets. It seems though that the rest was written in Greek.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Rafa999 on December 17, 2009, 10:59:48 PM
Quote
"Miltha" is "Logos" in Greek which is a pretty complex word which has been translated as "Word" in most Bibles. I don't like "Word" since "Logos" is much more complex as I'm sure "Miltha" is a as well.

Exactly. Don't you get annoyed when you see Oral Boyle or Pat Robertson going "The wooordddd did so forth and so forth" not even knowing how this refers to a complex New Testament concept which has roots going all the way to thousands of years ago, all the way back to important ancient Jewish mystical doctrines which require years of study to properly comprehend? So sometimes it is better to leave the text untranslated. I even have a friend who (from a Jewish background) converted to the COE many years ago and who says that the one thing he "can't forgive" is how people translated the text improperly, sometimes deliberately (Monophysites deliberately altered the text, the COE has extensive proof they did this, particularly in Hebrews 2:9 and Acts 20:28). Even Codex Vaticanus has a note on the margins with one of the scribes writing "you fool, why can't you leave the original reading alone". I'm not joking, its here:

http://www.peshitta.org/images/vaticanus.jpg

on the margin of Hebrews 1:3. We must prevent scripture from becoming the works of men.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: ialmisry on December 17, 2009, 11:18:03 PM
To answer:

The COE views the Father, Son, and Ruach as qnome of the same kyana, rather than as hypostases sharing the same homoousious. It is much more intuitive than the Greek. It is ancient semitic based terminology used by the Messiah. What's good for the Messiah, Abraham, and the Prophets is good for me.

Well this semite of the seed of Abraham and the same Hebrew stock as the Messiah prays in Arabic and got his advanced degree in Near Eastern Languages and Cultures at the U of C (tops in the field), taking Syriac as his second language exam for the PhD, having roamed from Harran in the North to the Brook of Egypt.  Sorry, the hoary Semitic mumbo-jumbo won't impress me.

So, when and where did the Messiah say qnome or kyana?



Quote
Second, I dont believe the New Testament was written in Greek despite all Western "scholarly" claims to the contrary (like Bruce Metzger knows more than the Patriarch of Babylon on the origin of these holy texts.Sure...)

Even the Peshitta wasn't written in Babylon, so I don't know why the Patriarch of Babylon could make any special claim.

Quote
 The Chaldean Catholic Church supposedly even had an autograph written by Mar Mari and Addai with them showing that the original was Aramaic. Go here: http://www.peshitta.org/ to read In Estrangelo (Eastern Syriac) the Peshitta.

You must have a different Bible, as we don't have the Gospel according to Mari nor the Epistles of Addai.

Quote
Further, we know Papias said that because of persecution most of the originals were lost in the Western world as people "translated best they could". This is too profound a topic and should be reserved for another time though.

Papias says that the Gospel AND ONLY the Gospel of Matthew was translated as best they could (btw., my working theory is that the Aramaic logia of Matthew is analogous to the postulated "Q", which was later translated by him into Greek).

And we have plenty of fragments in Greek going back to the second century AT THE LATEST.

Quote
Please go to the website I listed if interested since it only debates Peshitta primacy.

We have the threads here already.

Quote
Third, you mentioned Acts 20:28. Ancient COE manuscripts expressly show that unscrupulous Monophysite scribes altered Acts 20:28 and Hebrews 2:9 from the original readings right after the Nestorius controversy. Here is the original reading of Acts 20:28 (see links, one is to the Khabouris Codex):

http://dukhrana.com/peshitta/msviewer.php?ms=1&id=312
http://dukhrana.com/peshitta/msviewer.php?ms=2&id=312

1) you first have to prove, not assume, Syriac primacy.
2) you have to find an early example, not a second millenium Codex like the Khabouris.
http://www.melikiancollection.com/Selections/Biblical-Manuscripts/6798442_WYAw9
3) You have to prove that the Nestorians aren't the only who made the change.

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the MESSIAH purchased the Church with his own blood. God does not have blood (though he owns all the blood in the world and accepted the blood of his precious son as a most holy Qurbana, ie: sin offering of the highest order), it is blasphemy to suggest that an invisible spirit fused with a human nature to produce blood and that the creator "died" ceased to exist and left the universe in disrepair. This simply cannot happen. It is Orthodox to believe that the Messiah died and was ressurected by the holy Spirit indwelling within him.

Salpy, Ekhristosanesti, Minasuliman and any OO I have forgotten: this is why I say we are the same Faith, because I take it you find this blasphemous as I hope the EO do.

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There is a Western Peshitta used by the Syriac Orthodox Church and the EASTERN version which was untampered.

That's an assertion.  Any proof.

Quote
Who is right? I say the Eastern tradition not the Western is right.

Unfortunately (or fortunately) it doesn't depend on what you say.  Your proof?

Quote
The COE grew up in the Persian empire where nobody could tell it what to do.

The Persian Empire had plenty of EO and OO, and the consort of the Shah, Shirin, famously favored them over the Nestorians.  And yes, she had the Shah tell the Nestorians what to do.  Further, Justinian sponsored the OO in the Sassanid empire, and Heracleus occupied it.

Quote
So its manuscript tradition is more reliable than that of the Syriac Orthodox Church which was influenced by the Byzantine sphere and "robber synods" like that of Ephesus.

Doesn't even work well in theory, let alone in fact.  Fact is that we have the Greek of Acts 20:28 predating the ECUMENICAL Council of Ephesus
http://www.codexsinaiticus.org/en/manuscript.aspx?=Submit%20Query&book=51&chapter=20&lid=en&side=r&verse=28&zoomSlider=0

That's the Codex Sinaiticus, written 325-360. You can look at the verse, written before the birth of Nestorius or Theodoret, and perhaps even Theodore of Mospsuestia, or even Diodore of Tarsus.  To compare, here's the EO received text:
προσεχετε ουν εαυτοις και παντι τω ποιμνιω εν ω υμας το πνευμα το αγιον εθετο επισκοπους ποιμαινειν την εκκλησιαν του κυριου και θεου ην περιεποιησατο δια του ιδιου αιματος
προσέχετε οὖν ἑαυτοῖς καὶ παντὶ τῷ ποιμνίῳ ἐν ᾧ ὑμᾶς τὸ Πνεῦμα τὸ ῞Αγιον ἔθετο ἐπισκόπους, ποιμαίνειν τὴν ἐκκλησίαν τοῦ Κυρίου καὶ Θεοῦ, ἣν περιεποιήσατο διὰ τοῦ ἰδίου αἵματος.
http://www.apostoliki-diakonia.gr/bible/bible.asp?contents=new_testament/contents_praxeis.asp&main=praxeis&file=2.20.htm

I've boldfaced "His Own Blood." I'd boldface Christ/Messiah, but it's not in the text.

Again, what good are they without an English translation that I and most any poster on this forum can read?.
I usually take one post at a time, but I noticed this one, and I thought it apropos to answer here.

As I posted the Syriac text before
We believe that God purchased the Church with His Own Blood. Acts 20:28.

ܠܥܕܬܗ ܕܐܠܗܐ ܗܝ ܕܩܢܗ ܒܕܡܗ

Let me parse to make a point:it reads "To-Church-his of-God-the she which-He-purchased-her by-Blood-his.

This could have been phrased "to-church God-the which He=purchased-her by-Blood-his."  The bold faced parts are pleonism that become increasingly common and regular from the standardization of Syriac, i.e. after the 3-4th century AD.  Btw, Syriac comes from Eastern Aramaic, Our Lord spoke Western Aramaic.  The Peshitta is Eastern Aramaic.  This itself shows that the text, i.e. the translation, is not from 1st century Palestine, or 1st century Asia Minor, but centuries later and hundreds of miles away from where Our Lord taught.

Btw, for the Aramaically challenged, the MSS he has posted matches the printed text I posted above exactly, except where the MSS. has chnaged "God" to "Christ."

Quote
Anyways, I just want to say that the COE is actually very similar to the Orthodox Church but uses different terminology overall. The two pivotal differences I already gave you - Hebrews 2:9 and Acts 20:28 have different readings in Eastern Syriac, further the COE does not accept the canonicity of the last five NT books and the pericope adultera (story of the adultress in the Gospel of John).


For those who want to check out the terminology:A Compendious Syriac Dictionary by Robert Payne Smith (Oxford: Clarendon 1903) is the standard (well, there is a larger standard, but it is in Latin).
http://www.tyndalearchive.com/TABS/PayneSmith/

Quote
This diagram will help you out in understanding COE Christology:

(http://dukhrana.com/images/kyana_qnoma_parsopa.gif)

That's nice. I like a clear picture.

Quote
As for Qnome in Eastern Syriac, just read the NT at http://www.peshitta.org/ for countless instances.
If the instances are so countless, it shouldn't be quite a problem for you to cite one.  How about kyana?
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: ialmisry on December 17, 2009, 11:36:43 PM
Phew, lots of questions. Well let me start with a reference to Mar Papia's work:

http://www.monachos.net/content/patristics/patristictexts/191-papias-fragments

go to fragment 6 of this translation of what is left of his Exposition of the Oracles of our Lord and you will see that he believed the Gospels were originally written in "Hebrew" and people did the best they could to translate. It was very common for the Western Fathers not fluent in Hebrew or Aramaic to confuse the two languages. Eusebius did this several times. We also know Hegesippus was acquainted with the Syriac text of the Peshitta.

Not unless he was a prophet since he predates it.


Quote
Anyways, Aramaic primacy/Peshitta primacy is a heavy subject and it is best if you go to peshitta.org to read by yourselves on this since it is very draining for a person not fully qualified to teach on these texts (such as myself) to be the sole authority you guys can access on their history. Please speak to the site mantainer, the Deacon Paul Younan, read his interlinear.

Somebody asked why so few Peshitta translations. There are actually several translations, but it is the opinion of the COE that God does not put his blessing on translating the text since every time this happens something goes wrong (witness Lamsa, monophysites altering scripture, judaizing movements, Roman Catholics altering readings, etc.) So the COE never authorizes any translation, you must learn syriac.

Now we know how Muslims got there idea on the Arabic of the Qur'an. ::)

At Pentacost, they weren't all speaking Syriac, or even Aramaic.


Quote
Also why is the Patriarch of Babylon (Seleukia-Ctesiphon) more reliable than Bruce Metzger? Well you guys already know the answer- because of laying on of hands ,apostolic succession,  because he has the proper chain of transmission of these sacred doctrines while protestants weren't there 2000 years ago hearing St.Peter talk in Babylon,

Yes, I'm familar with the Assyrain claim of St. Peter being in Babylon (based on I Peter 5:13), but that was written in Rome, at a time when the city of Babylon in Mesopotamia had been abandoned for over two centuries.

And you are comparing apples and oranges.  Bruce Metzger is a scholar, the Patriarch or rather Catholicos of Seleukia-Ctesiphon (now in Chicago) is a primate, which doesn't require scholarship (especially given the occurance of ordaining children in the COE to that post).
(http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/c/c9/Marshimun.jpg)
http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/c/c9/Marshimun.jpg

Quote
nor did Bruce Metzger receive the priesthood from the 2 disciples Addai and Mar Mari. These offices are given by God himself and stipulate that the COE is an apostolic church with apostolic founders while Metzger talks of himself.
Well, the problem is that you claim to be an Apostolic Church, we EO make the same claim, as do the OO, and the Vatican.  But yet we do not teach the same thing.  Ordinarily Apostolic claims would trump Protestantism, but when it comes to MSS studies, it doesn't.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: ialmisry on December 17, 2009, 11:41:17 PM
Well guys, its just the opinion of the COE that these texts are in danger of becoming the works of men, thus it is better to "targum" the text in peoples language, but not cannot allow translations to ever substitute the original (giving authorization to a translation would be part of that process).

So we should stick with the original Greek (and the Peshitta itself shows it is a translation)?  And for the Hebrew, Septuagint or Hebrew (which, as you pointed out, is not identical even to Aramaic, let alone Syriac).

Quote
I believe there's nothing wrong in reading the Gospel in your own tongue and that as long as a translation is not deliberately deceptive like that of a JW or a Mormon its ok, but there's that danger of the text becoming "standardized" into the mold some group wants it to be in. There are nuances in the Aramaic which cannot be translated to full fidelity in any language. Take words like "Miltha" or "Qnome"...better leave untranslated. Think about the number of revisions the King James bible has undergone and you will see that no translation can ever live up to the original.
Any translation that is understood is superior to a text that is not.

So we should leave λόγος untranslated?  I'm reserving comment on qnome.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: ialmisry on December 17, 2009, 11:44:14 PM
Take words like "Miltha" or "Qnome"...better leave untranslated. Think about the number of revisions the King James bible has undergone and you will see that no translation can ever live up to the original.

I think I understand what you mean. "Miltha" is "Logos" in Greek which is a pretty complex word which has been translated as "Word" in most Bibles. I don't like "Word" since "Logos" is much more complex as I'm sure "Miltha" is a as well. The New Testament I have which is printed by a Greek monastery decided not to translate it which I think is the best idea. I think with "Word" many Protestants think that it is talking about the Scripture and that the Scripture is in some way divine or something. I can see your point how a lot can be mistranslated and taken out of context.

That unfortunately is only a problem in the Protestant English world.  I don't think it is, for instance, in Ireland.  Leave a lot untranslated, and it starts to read like jargon.  A language has to be baptized, too.  Every language.

Quote
Though, our views differ since I believe that the New Testament was originally Greek with the exception of St. Matthews Gospel which was clearly written to Jewish readers whom he pointed out was the Messiah that the Prophets wrote about and that Christ fulfilled the Law and Prophets. It seems though that the rest was written in Greek.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: ialmisry on December 17, 2009, 11:56:22 PM
Quote
"Miltha" is "Logos" in Greek which is a pretty complex word which has been translated as "Word" in most Bibles. I don't like "Word" since "Logos" is much more complex as I'm sure "Miltha" is a as well.

Exactly. Don't you get annoyed when you see Oral Boyle or Pat Robertson going "The wooordddd did so forth and so forth" not even knowing how this refers to a complex New Testament concept which has roots going all the way to thousands of years ago, all the way back to important ancient Jewish mystical doctrines which require years of study to properly comprehend? So sometimes it is better to leave the text untranslated. I even have a friend who (from a Jewish background) converted to the COE many years ago and who says that the one thing he "can't forgive" is how people translated the text improperly, sometimes deliberately (Monophysites deliberately altered the text, the COE has extensive proof they did this, particularly in Hebrews 2:9 and Acts 20:28).

let's see some of it. I've already given the proof that the EO and OO reading is correct.

Quote
Even Codex Vaticanus has a note on the margins with one of the scribes writing "you fool, why can't you leave the original reading alone". I'm not joking, its here:

http://www.peshitta.org/images/vaticanus.jpg

on the margin of Hebrews 1:3. We must prevent scripture from becoming the works of men.
What, pray tell, were they correcting in Hebrews 1:3?  Btw, it says "Fool and knave, leave the old  and do not correct!" — "ἀμαθέστατε καὶ κακέ, ἄφες τὸν παλαιόν, μὴ μεταποίει"
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: GregoryLA on December 17, 2009, 11:58:29 PM
Rafa, welcome to the forum!  :)

Sorry to interrupt the current discussion, but I have some questions for you or for anyway else who might know (and I'm thinking ialmisry might). 

1) Ialmisry posted a link to an article a while back talking about how the COE once had icons but has since done away with them.  I've also read else where that the COE considers iconography idolatrous.  Is this last statement true? Have you heard this about your church once having iconography?  Do you (or anyone else) have any idea when it was done away with?  Was there an "iconoclastic controversy" in the history of the COE? 

2) I understand that the COE allows all baptized Christians from "apostolic" churches (defined as RC, OO, EO, Anglican, Scandinavian Lutherans) to partake of their communion.  How long has open commmunion been the practice?

3) What sort of liturgical reforms caused the recent split between the Assyrian Church of the East (COE) and the Ancient Church of the East?

4) Salpy mentioned that Armenians and Assyrians often intermarry.  Do Armenians allow Assyrians to commune in their churches?

5) Does the COE practice baptizism by threefold immersion?

I did not realize the COE doesn't consider the last five books of the NT canonical.  That's very interesting.  Can you cite a source for that?

Thanks for entertaining all my questions!
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Rafa999 on December 18, 2009, 12:09:39 AM
Well iamisry, you know your stuff, however there are several problems. First, you did not prove Papias wrong. Papias was an apostolic man per excellence, he knew the apostles firsthand and says that the Hebrew (or rather Aramaic since both Hebrew and Aramaic use the same Ktav Ashurri script) is the original. I am a Peshitta primacist but I'm not here to convince anybody on this since others have spent their entire lives doing research on the Peshitta and are more qualified than me to defend this position.

You compared the COE to the Muslims on this. You are right- the COE is no different than the Muslims and the Jews on this subject. In fact Mohammed knew a COE monk by the name of Bahira. Islam has origins in Syriac Christianity believe it or not (not the fault of Assyrians that he became a heretic though).

It is not an "assertion" that a Western version of the Peshitta exists versus an Eastern version. The Chaldean Roman Catholics and Orthodox uses its version which includes the disputed 5 books and the disputed renderings, and the COE uses a different version which is practically identical to the Khabouris codex and the Mingana Peshitta. Also, how can you say I blaspheme for saying God does not have (literally) blood?  No semite would say that with a straight face that God has literal blood. The Messiah has blood and offered it as a Qurbana on the cross. Babylon was full of people in the first century, it was Seleukia-Ctesiphon, major city of the Seleukid empire and later the Parthians. Also I never said the COE has any "gospel of Addai or Mari" I was saying that they hand delivered, according to legend, the NT autographs to the early believers, and that the Chaldean church supposedly had a copy of the autographs copied down by one of these disciples friends. Also, you just confessed Justinian told the OO what to believe in, that's exactly my point. I am attempting to convince a COE Qasha to answer your questions, I simply am not sufficiently qualified (ie: not fluent in Syriac) to answer many of them.

As for your questions Gregory, the COE believes that iconography is a violation of the ten commandments and are somewhat strict on this. The Chaldeans who are Assyrians who transferred their loyalty to the Patriarch of Rome are less strict on this. Point 2 is correct, the COE allows communion with other apostolic churches and has lifted all its anathemas (something which was not reciprocated). The key point is believing in a trinitarian formula for baptism as you said in point five. Well, as for source for the COE not considering these books canonical, they just didn't reach the Assyrians until the late 19th century (British protestant missionaries). The COE only includes the first 22 books in its reading cycle if I am correct but refers to the last 5 as pious books. They have a different chain of transmission than the 22 Peshitta books, I believe in the last five books canonicity though (but its my opinion only). Assyrians welcome Armenians in their churches and often go to Armenian churches for communion (even though the Armenian church canons forbid this practice I believe- strong ties between the two peoples).
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: GregoryLA on December 18, 2009, 12:20:17 AM
Well iamisry, you know your stuff, however there are several problems. First, you did not prove Papias wrong. Papias was an apostolic man per excellence, he knew the apostles firsthand and says that the Hebrew (or rather Aramaic since both Hebrew and Aramaic use the same Ktav Ashurri script) is the original.

I don't think Isa (iamisry) said Papias was wrong.  All he said was that Papias only claimed that Matthew was written in Hebrew and not the whole NT.  I think, on the other hand, your claim is that the whole NT was written in Aramaic and you cite Papias in support of this.  I believe because of this Isa's point was that your source does not support your conclusion as you would like it to.

Sorry to interfere, I just thought I would clarify things.  I know Isa could've answered for himself.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Salpy on December 18, 2009, 12:28:49 AM
4) Salpy mentioned that Armenians and Assyrians often intermarry.  Do Armenians allow Assyrians to commune in their churches?


Technically I don't think it's proper, but it happens sometimes out of "pastoral sensitivity."  If an Armenian parishioner brings his Assyrian relatives to church with him, it's not unheard of for the priest to commune the Assyrian relatives.

You also have to put this in the context of what happened to both the Armenians and Assyrians during the Genocide of 1915.  It's often called the "Armenian Genocide," but the Assyrians who lived in what is today Eastern Turkey were also slaughtered.  Many of those who survived went into diaspora, just as the Armenians did, and I think that is one of the reasons why there has been so much intermarriage.  The Armenian Church was badly affected by the Genocide, with over 90% of her clergy martyred by the Turks, and I am assuming the COE was similarly affected, although Rafa could probably tell us about this in more detail.

Given these facts it should not be surprising that intermarriage occurs, or that Armenians and Assyrians sometimes attend each other's churches.  When you suffer together such a cataclysmic event and survive, and you find that most of your Church's clergy has been wiped out, you are not going to care so much about obscure theological issues.

An example was my grandfather's cousin.  After the Genocide, he lived in the Fresno area of California.  This was back in the days when matchmaking was an actual profession, and when it came time for him to marry, a matchmaker found him a young Assyrian girl who was on the East Coast.  He travelled by train across the country to meet her, marry her, and bring her back with him.  I think my cousins told me she was very young, in her mid-teens.  I think she had lost much of her family during the Genocide and I guess this was her way of finding a new family.  The poor thing was so shy and traditional, she could barely speak to her new husband, and for a long time she would not even eat in front of him.

Anyway, I am only bringing this up to point out that in real life, especially when one considers the events of 1915, the last thing people are going to bring up is theology, Christology, councils that were held 1500 years ago, etc.  Things just become more basic.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: PeterTheAleut on December 18, 2009, 12:29:20 AM
Quote
"Miltha" is "Logos" in Greek which is a pretty complex word which has been translated as "Word" in most Bibles. I don't like "Word" since "Logos" is much more complex as I'm sure "Miltha" is a as well.

Exactly. Don't you get annoyed when you see Oral Boyle or Pat Robertson going "The wooordddd did so forth and so forth" not even knowing how this refers to a complex New Testament concept which has roots going all the way to thousands of years ago, all the way back to important ancient Jewish mystical doctrines which require years of study to properly comprehend? So sometimes it is better to leave the text untranslated. I even have a friend who (from a Jewish background) converted to the COE many years ago and who says that the one thing he "can't forgive" is how people translated the text improperly, sometimes deliberately (Monophysites deliberately altered the text, the COE has extensive proof they did this, particularly in Hebrews 2:9 and Acts 20:28). Even Codex Vaticanus has a note on the margins with one of the scribes writing "you fool, why can't you leave the original reading alone". I'm not joking, its here:

http://www.peshitta.org/images/vaticanus.jpg

on the margin of Hebrews 1:3. We must prevent scripture from becoming the works of men.

Speaking as a moderator, I need to know whom you're calling Monophysites.  If you're referring to the Oriental Orthodox, specifically the Coptic Orthodox, with that name, I must ask you to stop and choose some more respectful label, since the Oriental Orthodox who frequent this forum find "Monophysite" quite insulting.  For specific citation of administrative policy on this, please read this directive from site founder, Fr. Anastasios:
Please do not use the following terms in your discussions as they are considered to be prejorative by other members of this forum:

Uniate: please use Eastern Catholic.
Monophysite: Please use Oriental Orthodox or Non-Chalcedonian.

Obviously, if you are discussing these terms in their true and historical sense then there is no problem using the term. What is being rejected is using this as a label to counter other members of the forum. As always, this does not imply that the board takes a position itself on these positions; this is merely a request to use civilized terminology in dialog on this forum.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: GregoryLA on December 18, 2009, 12:33:17 AM
Well iamisry, you know your stuff, however there are several problems. First, you did not prove Papias wrong. Papias was an apostolic man per excellence, he knew the apostles firsthand and says that the Hebrew (or rather Aramaic since both Hebrew and Aramaic use the same Ktav Ashurri script) is the original. I am a Peshitta primacist but I'm not here to convince anybody on this since others have spent their entire lives doing research on the Peshitta and are more qualified than me to defend this position.

You compared the COE to the Muslims on this. You are right- the COE is no different than the Muslims and the Jews on this subject. In fact Mohammed knew a COE monk by the name of Bahira. Islam has origins in Syriac Christianity believe it or not (not the fault of Assyrians that he became a heretic though).

It is not an "assertion" that a Western version of the Peshitta exists versus an Eastern version. The Chaldean Roman Catholics and Orthodox uses its version which includes the disputed 5 books and the disputed renderings, and the COE uses a different version which is practically identical to the Khabouris codex and the Mingana Peshitta. Also, how can you say I blaspheme for saying God does not have (literally) blood?  No semite would say that with a straight face that God has literal blood. The Messiah has blood and offered it as a Qurbana on the cross. Babylon was full of people in the first century, it was Seleukia-Ctesiphon, major city of the Seleukid empire and later the Parthians. Also I never said the COE has any "gospel of Addai or Mari" I was saying that they hand delivered, according to legend, the NT autographs to the early believers, and that the Chaldean church supposedly had a copy of the autographs copied down by one of these disciples friends. Also, you just confessed Justinian told the OO what to believe in, that's exactly my point. I am attempting to convince a COE Qasha to answer your questions, I simply am not sufficiently qualified (ie: not fluent in Syriac) to answer many of them.

As for your questions Gregory, the COE believes that iconography is a violation of the ten commandments and are somewhat strict on this. The Chaldeans who are Assyrians who transferred their loyalty to the Patriarch of Rome are less strict on this. Point 2 is correct, the COE allows communion with other apostolic churches and has lifted all its anathemas (something which was not reciprocated). The key point is believing in a trinitarian formula for baptism as you said in point five. Well, as for source for the COE not considering these books canonical, they just didn't reach the Assyrians until the late 19th century (British protestant missionaries). The COE only includes the first 22 books in its reading cycle if I am correct but refers to the last 5 as pious books. They have a different chain of transmission than the 22 Peshitta books, I believe in the last five books canonicity though (but its my opinion only). Assyrians welcome Armenians in their churches and often go to Armenian churches for communion (even though the Armenian church canons forbid this practice I believe- strong ties between the two peoples).

So the COE baptizes by threeforld immersion?  I couldn't make a clear answer to that question in your post.  You mentioned a "trinitarian formula" by all trinitarian Christians practice this- not all baptize by threefold immersion- some sprinkle or immerse only once. 

Also, what were the liturgical reforms inacted in the 1970s by the Assyrian Church of the East which caused some traditionalists to form the Ancient Church of the East?

Also, here is the link to the book on early iconography in the COE, it's written by a professor of Eastern Christian studies at a university in the Netherlands, I believe.

http://www.reference-global.com/doi/abs/10.1515/9783110204155.3.324

Here's a review of said article...
http://www.thevoiceoforthodoxy.com/book_reviews.html

Also, archaeology seems to support the existence of iconography in the early years of the COE...

http://www.anchist.mq.edu.au/doccentre/Zayton.htm

Also, I'd like to add I'm not trying to be accusatory.  I just think it's fairly obvious that the Assyrian Church of the East at one point was not (at least in its entirety) opposed to images and this changed at some point.  I'm wondering when this change occurred, if the Assyrian Church's hierarchy acknowledges it happening and under what circumstances it happened.

Thanks again!
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: EkhristosAnesti on December 18, 2009, 12:34:21 AM
Also, how can you say I blaspheme for saying God does not have (literally) blood? ...The Messiah has blood and offered it as a Qurbana on the cross.

A demonstration of why we regard such a sentiment blasphemy, by way of a simple syllogism:

Your first premise: God does not have blood.
Your second premise: The Messiah has blood.
The conclusion that logically follows: Therefore, the Messiah is not God.



Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: GregoryLA on December 18, 2009, 12:36:58 AM
4) Salpy mentioned that Armenians and Assyrians often intermarry.  Do Armenians allow Assyrians to commune in their churches?


Technically I don't think it's proper, but it happens sometimes out of "pastoral sensitivity."  If an Armenian parishioner brings his Assyrian relatives to church with him, it's not unheard of for the priest to commune the Assyrian relatives.

You also have to put this in the context of what happened to both the Armenians and Assyrians during the Genocide of 1915.  It's often called the "Armenian Genocide," but the Assyrians who lived in what is today Eastern Turkey were also slaughtered.  Many of those who survived went into diaspora, just as the Armenians did, and I think that is one of the reasons why there has been so much intermarriage.  The Armenian Church was badly affected by the Genocide, with over 90% of her clergy martyred by the Turks, and I am assuming the COE was similarly affected, although Rafa could probably tell us about this in more detail.

Given these facts it should not be surprising that intermarriage occurs, or that Armenians and Assyrians sometimes attend each other's churches.  When you suffer together such a cataclysmic event and survive, and you find that most of your Church's clergy has been wiped out, you are not going to care so much about obscure theological issues.

An example was my grandfather's cousin.  After the Genocide, he lived in the Fresno area of California.  This was back in the days when matchmaking was an actual profession, and when it came time for him to marry, a matchmaker found him a young Assyrian girl who was on the East Coast.  He travelled by train across the country to meet her, marry her, and bring her back with him.  I think my cousins told me she was very young, in her mid-teens.  I think she had lost much of her family during the Genocide and I guess this was her way of finding a new family.  The poor thing was so shy and traditional, she could barely speak to her new husband, and for a long time she would not even eat in front of him.

Anyway, I am only bringing this up to point out that in real life, especially when one considers the events of 1915, the last thing people are going to bring up is theology, Christology, councils that were held 1500 years ago, etc.  Things just become more basic.

That's definitely a difficult and heartbreaking situation.  I didn't mean in judgment in my question and if I came across that way or if I harbored that unknowingly, I'm sorry. 

Thank you for your answer!
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Andrew21091 on December 18, 2009, 12:38:15 AM
As for your questions Gregory, the COE believes that iconography is a violation of the ten commandments and are somewhat strict on this.

Did they once have iconography in the ancient days [EDIT](It would seem that this is a yes based of Gregory's post? Is the COE's prohibition come from Islamic influence? I do not wish to go into iconography here, if you want we can do another thread, but if it goes against the Ten Commandments, then I say God broke that one when He commanded two Cherubim images on the Ark of the Covenant and there were images in the Temple. On another note, if iconography is against the commandments, then it doesn't seem to make sense that the COE would allow EO, OO, and Catholics to partake of communion when they use icons in their worship. I actually don't have to defend iconography since St. John of Damascus and St. Theodore the Studite did this pretty well a long time ago.

It is nice though having a member of the COE around and I appreciate the information you have provided since I have to admit, my knowledge of the COE is pretty limited (read a little info in An Illustrated History of Assyrian Christianity which I didn't have the time to read much of). Thanks for the information. Hope the questions and what not aren't too much.  :D
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Salpy on December 18, 2009, 12:40:13 AM
I didn't mean in judgment in my question and if I came across that way or if I harbored that unknowingly, I'm sorry. 

I did not perceive anything judgmental about your tone.  It's a legitimate question and I am happy to answer it.   :)
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: GregoryLA on December 18, 2009, 12:42:32 AM
As for your questions Gregory, the COE believes that iconography is a violation of the ten commandments and are somewhat strict on this.

Did they once have iconography in the ancient days or is it a newer idea influenced by Islam? I do not wish to go into iconography here, if you want we can do another thread, but if it goes against the Ten Commandments, then I say God broke that one when He commanded two Cherubim images on the Ark of the Covenant and there were images in the Temple. On another note, if iconography is against the commandments, then it doesn't seem to make sense that the COE would allow EO, OO, and Catholics to partake of communion when they use icons in their worship. I actually don't have to defend iconography since St. John of Damascus and St. Theodore the Studite did this pretty well a long time ago.

It is nice though having a member of the COE around and I appreciate the information you have provided since I have to admit, my knowledge of the COE is pretty limited (read a little info in An Illustrated History of Assyrian Christianity which I didn't have the time to read much of). Thanks for the information. Hope the questions and what not aren't too much.  :D

I hope to get this book soon!
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Andrew21091 on December 18, 2009, 12:45:48 AM
As for your questions Gregory, the COE believes that iconography is a violation of the ten commandments and are somewhat strict on this.

Did they once have iconography in the ancient days or is it a newer idea influenced by Islam? I do not wish to go into iconography here, if you want we can do another thread, but if it goes against the Ten Commandments, then I say God broke that one when He commanded two Cherubim images on the Ark of the Covenant and there were images in the Temple. On another note, if iconography is against the commandments, then it doesn't seem to make sense that the COE would allow EO, OO, and Catholics to partake of communion when they use icons in their worship. I actually don't have to defend iconography since St. John of Damascus and St. Theodore the Studite did this pretty well a long time ago.

It is nice though having a member of the COE around and I appreciate the information you have provided since I have to admit, my knowledge of the COE is pretty limited (read a little info in An Illustrated History of Assyrian Christianity which I didn't have the time to read much of). Thanks for the information. Hope the questions and what not aren't too much.  :D

I hope to get this book soon!

The photography in it is beautiful and some of the info I read from it was useful. I was able to find it at a University library and I borrowed it but didn’t get to read it in depth as much as I wanted to but I’ll probably borrow it again.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: SamB on December 18, 2009, 12:58:18 AM
I do read Aramaic, but I think you mean Syriac (which I also read).  

ܩܪܐ ܐܢܬ ܠܐܪܡܝܐ ܥܬܕܩܐ (http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/2/26/Bar-rakib.jpg) ܕܗܘ ܩܕܡ ܠܫܢܐ ܣܘܪܝܝܐ ܐܝܬܘܗܝ؟ ܬܒ ܫܦܝܪ. ܡܨܐ ܐܢܬ ܟܝ ܕܬܣܬܟܠ ܘܕܬܡܠܠ ܒܠܫܢܐ ܕܥܡܐ ܐܝܟ ܛܘܪܝܐ ܬܘܒ ܐܘ  ܒܠܚܘܕ ܩܪܐ ܐܢܬ ܠܟܬܒܢܝܐ؟

ܬܪܝܨܐܝܬ ܐܡܪܬ ܕܠܫܢܐ ܣܘܪܝܝܐ ܐܝܬܘܗܝ ܡܕܡ ܘܠܫܢܐ ܐܪܡܝܐ ܡܕܡ ܐܚܪܝܢ.  ܥܡܐ ܕܩܪܝܬ ܡܥܠܘܠܐ ܡܡܠܠ ܒܐܪܡܝܐ ܘܠܘ ܒܣܘܪܝܝܐ ܒܗܝ ܕܠܫܢܐ ܕܝܠܗ ܐܪܡܝܐ ܡܥܪܒܝܐ ܘܠܘ ܡܕܢܚܝܐ ܐܝܬܘܗܝ

Ialmisry,
ܫܘܐܠܐ ܠܟ̣

ܣܢܝܩ ܐܢܐ ܟܬܒܐ ܕܬܘܪܨ ܡܡܠܠܐ.  ܐܪܐ ܝܕܥ ܐܢܬ ܚܕ؟

اذا فيك تنصحني بواحد ممتاز بكون ممنون الك


Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Rafa999 on December 18, 2009, 01:06:46 AM
Here are a couple of COE documents for those interested:

http://www.nestorian.org/nestorian_documents.html

The Nicene creed in Syriac used for threefold immersion is on that website. The COE approved the Nicean creed in 410 under Mar Isaac. Yes, the COE uses the correct formula ("In the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit"). As for the iconography issue, its sort of tricky, you see the COE was a very potent missionary force in the middle ages. In Asia, as you can see, some cases of local populations using iconography like other Christians occurred. By the way, there are actually Mongolian-Aramaic bibles in existence, the COE had followers all the way to Peking, in fact one of its patriarchs was Chinese. There's a book containing the travels of the Holy St. Bar Saumo which I highly recommend you read at Peshitta.org its called "The Monks of Kublai Khan" by Wallis Budget. Kublai Khan's mother was from the COE.

Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: GregoryLA on December 18, 2009, 01:07:38 AM
As for your questions Gregory, the COE believes that iconography is a violation of the ten commandments and are somewhat strict on this.

Did they once have iconography in the ancient days or is it a newer idea influenced by Islam? I do not wish to go into iconography here, if you want we can do another thread, but if it goes against the Ten Commandments, then I say God broke that one when He commanded two Cherubim images on the Ark of the Covenant and there were images in the Temple. On another note, if iconography is against the commandments, then it doesn't seem to make sense that the COE would allow EO, OO, and Catholics to partake of communion when they use icons in their worship. I actually don't have to defend iconography since St. John of Damascus and St. Theodore the Studite did this pretty well a long time ago.

It is nice though having a member of the COE around and I appreciate the information you have provided since I have to admit, my knowledge of the COE is pretty limited (read a little info in An Illustrated History of Assyrian Christianity which I didn't have the time to read much of). Thanks for the information. Hope the questions and what not aren't too much.  :D

I hope to get this book soon!

The photography in it is beautiful and some of the info I read from it was useful. I was able to find it at a University library and I borrowed it but didn’t get to read it in depth as much as I wanted to but I’ll probably borrow it again.


Oh, to have access to a university library again! :D

Problem is, I was always too busy with either classes or my social life to really take full advantage of it.  I've realized recently that I've only really learned how to study and enjoy it now- three and a half years after I finished school. ???
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: ialmisry on December 18, 2009, 01:12:04 AM
Well iamisry, you know your stuff, however there are several problems. First, you did not prove Papias wrong. Papias was an apostolic man per excellence, he knew the apostles firsthand and says that the Hebrew (or rather Aramaic since both Hebrew and Aramaic use the same Ktav Ashurri script) is the original. I am a Peshitta primacist but I'm not here to convince anybody on this since others have spent their entire lives doing research on the Peshitta and are more qualified than me to defend this position.

I didn't try to prove Papias wrong because I believe he is correct.  He, as someone has already pointed out, is only speaking of the Gospel of Matthew.

Quote
You compared the COE to the Muslims on this. You are right- the COE is no different than the Muslims and the Jews on this subject. In fact Mohammed knew a COE monk by the name of Bahira. Islam has origins in Syriac Christianity believe it or not (not the fault of Assyrians that he became a heretic though).

I once cornered a group of Muslims in Egypt into having to admit if the Qur'an can only be in Arabic, then Islam is only a religion for Arabs (not this Arab).

Quote
It is not an "assertion" that a Western version of the Peshitta exists versus an Eastern version. The Chaldean Roman Catholics and Orthodox uses its version which includes the disputed 5 books and the disputed renderings, and the COE uses a different version which is practically identical to the Khabouris codex and the Mingana Peshitta.



Quote
Also, how can you say I blaspheme for saying God does not have (literally) blood?  No semite would say that with a straight face that God has literal blood.


This Semite does.  And this Semite did: "My Blood is Drink Indeed." ܘܕܡܝ ܫܪܝܪܐܝܬ ܐܝܬܘܗܝ ܡܫܬܝܐ

I assure you, my face is quite straight, as was His.

Quote
The Messiah has blood and offered it as a Qurbana on the cross.

That He did.

Quote
Babylon was full of people in the first century, it was Seleukia-Ctesiphon, major city of the Seleukid empire and later the Parthians.

Seleucia-Ctesiphon was a major city on the Tigris, to which, as a tablet records at the time of 275 B.C., the population of Babylon, which was on the Euphrates, was moved wholescale.


Quote
Also I never said the COE has any "gospel of Addai or Mari" I was saying that they hand delivered, according to legend, the NT autographs to the early believers, and that the Chaldean church supposedly had a copy of the autographs copied down by one of these disciples friends.

Then that's odd, because the Peshitta is in Northeast Syriac, and the early believers, i.e. Christ and the Apostles, spoke South-West Aramaic.

Quote
Also, you just confessed Justinian told the OO what to believe in, that's exactly my point.


You claimed that the Sassanids protected the COE from Orthodox influence and my point is that it did not.

Quote
I am attempting to convince a COE Qasha to answer your questions, I simply am not sufficiently qualified (ie: not fluent in Syriac) to answer many of them.

We'll do a simple one, with the verse we just spoke of.  The scene in Acts 20 is in Western Asia, where no one spoke Aramaic, and everyone by the first century spoke Greek.  In the text you linked:
http://dukhrana.com/peshitta/msviewer.php?ms=1&id=312
third line from the bottom, in the middle, you see the word "apesqope"
ܐܦܤܩܘܦܐ
this is not the same as the word used in, say I Timothy 3:2, where the old word "elder" "qishshiisha" ܩܫܝܫܐ is used, as it is in Acts 20:17 (for Greek πρεσβυτερος).

The word is an obvious borrowing from the Greek "επισκοπος."  Why would they use a foreign term (and the word stands out as foreign as zdrovie does in English) if they had a perfectly good Aramaic one available, as used in Acts 20:17?  And why does the difference in terms dove tail both in the Greek and Syriac of Acts 20?
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: GregoryLA on December 18, 2009, 01:14:54 AM
Here are a couple of COE documents for those interested:

http://www.nestorian.org/nestorian_documents.html

The Nicene creed in Syriac used for threefold immersion is on that website. The COE approved the Nicean creed in 410 under Mar Isaac. Yes, the COE uses the correct formula ("In the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit"). As for the iconography issue, its sort of tricky, you see the COE was a very potent missionary force in the middle ages. In Asia, as you can see, some cases of local populations using iconography like other Christians occurred. By the way, there are actually Mongolian-Aramaic bibles in existence, the COE had followers all the way to Peking, in fact one of its patriarchs was Chinese. There's a book containing the travels of the Holy St. Bar Saumo which I highly recommend you read at Peshitta.org its called "The Monks of Kublai Khan" by Wallis Budget. Kublai Khan's mother was from the COE.



Sorry to be persistent, but I don't think you've understood my question.  Or if you have, I don't fully understand your answer. Haha. 

I'm not asking do you baptize "In the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit."  I assumed you do.  What I'm asking is do you actually submerge the person being bapized three seperate times under the water, as the Eastern and Oriental Orthodox do. 

Most western churches that I'm aware of do it like this...

"In the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit"
*dunk you under the water once*

The EO and OO do it like this...

"In the name of the Father"
*dunk you the first time*
"And the Son"
*dunk you the second time*
"And the Holy Spirit"
*dunk you the third and final time*

Of course, in some cases pouring over the head is also allowed but I think it's always three times.

So which practice is held by the COE?

Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: minasoliman on December 18, 2009, 04:56:55 AM
I was wondering who are the "Monophysites" and if you can, please show how these "Monophysites" changed some verses in the Bible?

I also want to point out as Peter did earlier, Copts, Armenians, Syriacs, etc. don't like to be referred to as "Monophysite", since they consider it a heresy as well.

Also, your Christology is odd.  We base our terminology and beliefs on the foundation of St. John's gospel, where he states, "In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God...and the Word became flesh and dwelt among us."  And further more, it is recorded by the evangelist that St. John the Forerunner spoke of "After me comes a Man who is preferred before me, for He was before me."  St. John not only says that there is a Man who comes before Him, but existed before he existed.  The same pronoun used on Christ is the same pronoun used in His divinity.  Therefore, if you deny God had blood, you deny, in our understanding, Christ's divinity, and therefore turning Christ into two persons.  If St. John the Forerunner can say that this Man was pre-existent, why do you deny the blood of God incarnate?

Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: augustin717 on December 18, 2009, 05:17:42 AM
Here are a couple of COE documents for those interested:

http://www.nestorian.org/nestorian_documents.html

The Nicene creed in Syriac used for threefold immersion is on that website. The COE approved the Nicean creed in 410 under Mar Isaac. Yes, the COE uses the correct formula ("In the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit"). As for the iconography issue, its sort of tricky, you see the COE was a very potent missionary force in the middle ages. In Asia, as you can see, some cases of local populations using iconography like other Christians occurred. By the way, there are actually Mongolian-Aramaic bibles in existence, the COE had followers all the way to Peking, in fact one of its patriarchs was Chinese. There's a book containing the travels of the Holy St. Bar Saumo which I highly recommend you read at Peshitta.org its called "The Monks of Kublai Khan" by Wallis Budget. Kublai Khan's mother was from the COE.



Sorry to be persistent, but I don't think you've understood my question.  Or if you have, I don't fully understand your answer. Haha. 

I'm not asking do you baptize "In the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit."  I assumed you do.  What I'm asking is do you actually submerge the person being bapized three seperate times under the water, as the Eastern and Oriental Orthodox do. 

Most western churches that I'm aware of do it like this...

"In the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit"
*dunk you under the water once*

The EO and OO do it like this...

"In the name of the Father"
*dunk you the first time*
"And the Son"
*dunk you the second time*
"And the Holy Spirit"
*dunk you the third and final time*

Of course, in some cases pouring over the head is also allowed but I think it's always three times.

So which practice is held by the COE?


The Assyrians baptize by threefold immersion, just like all other eastern churches; they also have other ceremonies and rites of baptism similar or identical with those of the Orthodox, such as the anointing and the chrismation immediately following baptism.
I have the book containing the order of baptism of their church.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: ialmisry on December 18, 2009, 12:14:37 PM
I do read Aramaic, but I think you mean Syriac (which I also read).  

ܩܪܐ ܐܢܬ ܠܐܪܡܝܐ ܥܬܕܩܐ (http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/2/26/Bar-rakib.jpg) ܕܗܘ ܩܕܡ ܠܫܢܐ ܣܘܪܝܝܐ ܐܝܬܘܗܝ؟ ܬܒ ܫܦܝܪ. ܡܨܐ ܐܢܬ ܟܝ ܕܬܣܬܟܠ ܘܕܬܡܠܠ ܒܠܫܢܐ ܕܥܡܐ ܐܝܟ ܛܘܪܝܐ ܬܘܒ ܐܘ  ܒܠܚܘܕ ܩܪܐ ܐܢܬ ܠܟܬܒܢܝܐ؟

ܬܪܝܨܐܝܬ ܐܡܪܬ ܕܠܫܢܐ ܣܘܪܝܝܐ ܐܝܬܘܗܝ ܡܕܡ ܘܠܫܢܐ ܐܪܡܝܐ ܡܕܡ ܐܚܪܝܢ.  ܥܡܐ ܕܩܪܝܬ ܡܥܠܘܠܐ ܡܡܠܠ ܒܐܪܡܝܐ ܘܠܘ ܒܣܘܪܝܝܐ ܒܗܝ ܕܠܫܢܐ ܕܝܠܗ ܐܪܡܝܐ ܡܥܪܒܝܐ ܘܠܘ ܡܕܢܚܝܐ ܐܝܬܘܗܝ

Ialmisry,
ܫܘܐܠܐ ܠܟ̣

ܣܢܝܩ ܐܢܐ ܟܬܒܐ ܕܬܘܪܨ ܡܡܠܠܐ.  ܐܪܐ ܝܕܥ ܐܢܬ ܚܕ؟

اذا فيك تنصحني بواحد ممتاز بكون ممنون الك



For those not blessed enough, the discussion is about the forms of Aramaic, which stretches back past the first millenium BC.  Labad, as the story of him chasing Jacob shows, spoke Aramaic.Genesis 31:47.  The language is treated as all one languages, like Hebrew is treated, or it is atomized into its various varieties, like Latin and the Romance languages.

For the interested, a good grammar for most needs, but not without its faults, is Wheeler Thackston's Introduction to Syriac: an elementary grammar with readings from Syriac
http://books.google.com/books?id=KBtjAAAAMAAJ&q=syriac+grammar+Thackston&dq=syriac+grammar+Thackston&lr=&cd=1


The standard is Compendious Syriac grammar By Theodor Nöldeke
http://books.google.com/books?id=VP_PP9VW-hUC&printsec=frontcover&dq=syriac+grammar&cd=5#v=onepage&q=&f=false
which is beyond most needs.

For dictionaries, nothing compares overall with Payne Smith's Compendious Thesaurus.
http://www.tyndalearchive.com/TABS/PayneSmith/.

The Deacon (?) Kiraz has put out a lot of good things on Syriac, like a concordance:
http://books.google.com/books?id=xOs9zhQAa7QC&printsec=frontcover&dq=editions:ISBN9004097317#v=onepage&q=&f=false

and his very excellent Lexical tools to the Syriac New Testament By George Anton Kíraz
http://books.google.com/books?id=zOATA-dVfPgC&pg=PP1&dq=syriac+Kiraz+lexical&lr=&cd=3#v=onepage&q=syriac%20Kiraz%20lexical&f=false
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Papist on December 18, 2009, 12:36:09 PM
How does the ACOE deal with the verse from the Gospel of John?

"The Word became flesh, and dwelt among us."
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: ialmisry on December 18, 2009, 01:20:57 PM
How does the ACOE deal with the verse from the Gospel of John?

"The Word became flesh, and dwelt among us."

To give you an idea of how great a problem this is, the Peshitta reads:ܘܡܠܬܐ ܒܤܪܐ ܗܘܐ ܘܐܓܢ ܒܢ which literally is "Word-the Flesh-the he-was and-he-abided/rested in/by-us.

If you look at the MSS. that Rafa has cited (third line from the top, go from the right to the large dot after the second word, which is the end of John 1:13.  The rest of the line is what is what I have posted above) you can see that it is the same text.
http://dukhrana.com/peshitta/msviewer.php?ms=1&id=195
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Papist on December 18, 2009, 01:25:58 PM
How does the ACOE deal with the verse from the Gospel of John?

"The Word became flesh, and dwelt among us."

To give you an idea of how great a problem this is, the Peshitta reads:ܘܡܠܬܐ ܒܤܪܐ ܗܘܐ ܘܐܓܢ ܒܢ which literally is "Word-the Flesh-the he-was and-he-abided/rested in/by-us.

If you look at the MSS. that Rafa has cited (third line from the top, go from the right to the large dot after the second word, which is the end of John 1:13.  The rest of the line is what is what I have posted above) you can see that it is the same text.
http://dukhrana.com/peshitta/msviewer.php?ms=1&id=195
They should have stuck with the original Greek.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: minasoliman on December 18, 2009, 01:54:57 PM
How does the ACOE deal with the verse from the Gospel of John?

"The Word became flesh, and dwelt among us."

To give you an idea of how great a problem this is, the Peshitta reads:ܘܡܠܬܐ ܒܤܪܐ ܗܘܐ ܘܐܓܢ ܒܢ which literally is "Word-the Flesh-the he-was and-he-abided/rested in/by-us.

If you look at the MSS. that Rafa has cited (third line from the top, go from the right to the large dot after the second word, which is the end of John 1:13.  The rest of the line is what is what I have posted above) you can see that it is the same text.
http://dukhrana.com/peshitta/msviewer.php?ms=1&id=195

So, in other words, it's "The Word was flesh, and abided in/by us"?
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: SamB on December 18, 2009, 11:48:44 PM
ܬܘܕܝ ܣܓܝ ܠܟ ܚܒܪܐ

I'll make good use of your recommendations.  I am intrigued to see how such English-written grammars describe the Semitic system.  I am certainly interested also in Arabic-written Syriac grammars if you know of any.  Already knowing one Semitic tongue obviously is a strong advantage when working on another.

So are you familiar ialmasri with Ma`loulli, Surith, Turoyo, and other spoken dialects, and as for literary non-Syriac Aramaic, perhaps Targumic, Mandaean, etc.?  Not many really study Aramaic in its many varieties.  Bravo `aleik.

By the way you might like this, Temani (Yemenite) traditional Jewish chanting from the Hebrew (proper Hebrew, thank God), Aramaic Targum, and Arabic Tafseer:

http://www.youtube.com/user/JubanTeyman24
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: ialmisry on December 20, 2009, 08:10:55 PM
Quote
This diagram will help you out in understanding COE Christology:

(http://dukhrana.com/images/kyana_qnoma_parsopa.gif)

That's nice. I like a clear picture.

I couldn't quite put my finger on what was wrong with this picture, and then it popped up to me that the Persons of the Holy Trinity does not have parsope.  That's the problem.

The Fathers identify the hypostasis with the prosopon.  It is odd that whereas it is claimed that we cannot translate Kyana and qnome, that they borrow a Greek term to split the person from the subsistence, making a prosoponic union instead of a hypostatic union.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Tallitot on December 20, 2009, 10:44:54 PM
Is there any place where we can give up modern technology and live like the first-century Christians?

Become a Shaker or Amish. But I've always wondered what "modern" technology is. Is it ok to use a gramaphone, rahter than a CD player?
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Andrew21091 on December 20, 2009, 11:31:48 PM
Is there any place where we can give up modern technology and live like the first-century Christians?

Become a Shaker or Amish. But I've always wondered what "modern" technology is. Is it ok to use a gramaphone, rahter than a CD player?

Indeed. Surely, they would be able to have the Model T by now right?
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: PeterTheAleut on December 21, 2009, 03:05:39 AM
Is there any place where we can give up modern technology and live like the first-century Christians?

Become a Shaker or Amish. But I've always wondered what "modern" technology is. Is it ok to use a gramaphone, rahter than a CD player?
Are you expecting a response, or are you just asking a rhetorical question?  Matthew777 is currently banned from posting anything here.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Nazarene on December 21, 2009, 07:39:25 AM
Quote
This diagram will help you out in understanding COE Christology:

(http://dukhrana.com/images/kyana_qnoma_parsopa.gif)

That's nice. I like a clear picture.

I couldn't quite put my finger on what was wrong with this picture, and then it popped up to me that the Persons of the Holy Trinity does not have parsope.  That's the problem.

The diagram is about the Incarnation not the Trinity.

The Fathers identify the hypostasis with the prosopon.

Which means nothing to the COE who's language and terminology is completely different, and had practically zero influence from the Greek philosophers.

It is odd that whereas it is claimed that we cannot translate Kyana and qnome,

Actually we can translate kyana, it means nature/ousia, but no we cannot translate qnoma - not even into Hebrew, Aramaic's closest sister language. The COE is not picking on anyone, the concept just doesn't exist in any language but Aramaic.

that they borrow a Greek term

Cause it doesn't exist in their language, or in ancient Hebrew either btw. Try find a Hebrew cognate for prosopon in the Tanakh.

to split the person from the subsistence, making a prosoponic union instead of a hypostatic union.

Huh? Prosoponic union, hypostatic union? Again you're dealing with the COE here which means you gotta throw all of that out the window. Can't you see that the 2 kyane are united in the parposa - through the qnome?

Oh btw, here are Peshitta NT verses for qnoma:

Luke 11:17, John 5:26, Romans 1:27, Ephesians 2:15, Colossians 2:15, Hebrews 1:3 & Hebrews 10:1

and for kyana:

Romans 2:27, Romans 11:24, 1 Corinthians 11:14, Galatians 2:15, Galatians 4:8, James 1:21, James 3:7
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Nazarene on December 21, 2009, 10:53:18 AM
Quote
This diagram will help you out in understanding COE Christology:

(http://dukhrana.com/images/kyana_qnoma_parsopa.gif)

That's nice. I like a clear picture.

I couldn't quite put my finger on what was wrong with this picture, and then it popped up to me that the Persons of the Holy Trinity does not have parsope.  That's the problem.

The diagram is about the Incarnation not the Trinity.

My bad took a 2nd look at this and I see the connection to the Holy Trinity you're referring to. No the qnome of the Trinity do not have parsope, except for the Son and an Assyrian Catholic on this forum explained why (emphasis mine):

It is ok in English to do this (Second Person of the Holy Trinity) because there is no English term directly equivalent to Qnoma (as this term is understood in the Church of the East), and so this is the best that can be done in English for the Trinity.  In Aramaic, however, which is much more theologically important for us as Aramaic Christians, we do not use the specific Aramaic term of Parsopa in the Trinity, because for us Parsopa exists in the Material realm.  We do not say three Parsope, because the Father and the Holy Spirit were not incarnated in the Material realm and did not assume Matter, but the Son didThe Son assumed Matter, a Human Body, that was fashioned from the Virgin Mary, a Body that was animated by a rational Human Soul, and was united to Him.  The Son, in the incarnation, has entered the Material realm, and so this is how we understand Parsopa, the Union of the Son and Man.

God bless,

Rony

http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,20533.45.html

That's why you only see a parsopa for the Son, because the other two members of the Trinity did not incarnate - they did not enter the material realm, only the Son did.


Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: ialmisry on December 21, 2009, 12:57:58 PM
Quote
This diagram will help you out in understanding COE Christology:

(http://dukhrana.com/images/kyana_qnoma_parsopa.gif)

That's nice. I like a clear picture.

I couldn't quite put my finger on what was wrong with this picture, and then it popped up to me that the Persons of the Holy Trinity does not have parsope.  That's the problem.

The diagram is about the Incarnation not the Trinity.

Putting aside the obvious problem that the Incarnation involves the Trinity, note how on the left the hypstasises of Peter and Paul have prosopa, but the Hypostasis of the Father and Spirit do not.

The Fathers identify the hypostasis with the prosopon.

Which means nothing to the COE who's language and terminology is completely different, and had practically zero influence from the Greek philosophers.
LOL.  Except taking the Greek term prosopon ("parsopa").

The Syriac scholars, including members of the COE read and worked on the Greek philosophers, and example being Hunein b. Ishaq, whose translations of Greek works via Syriac into Arabic were in turn translated into Latin (which calls him "Johannitius").  He is far from the only one.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hunayn_ibn_Ishaq

It is odd that whereas it is claimed that we cannot translate Kyana and qnome,

Actually we can translate kyana, it means nature/ousia, but no we cannot translate qnoma - not even into Hebrew, Aramaic's closest sister language. The COE is not picking on anyone, the concept just doesn't exist in any language but Aramaic.

Then it is pretty useless as a term describing universal Truth then.

It can be translated. Actually, it is itself a translation in this use.
http://www.dukhrana.com/lexicon/PayneSmith/index.php
search: qnwm' p. 509, bottom right.

that they borrow a Greek term

Cause it doesn't exist in their language, or in ancient Hebrew either btw. Try find a Hebrew cognate for prosopon in the Tanakh.

I'm not the one claiming that some eternal truth is accessible in Syriac, and no other language.

The Hebrew is paniym:
Quote
06440 paniym paw-neem’ pl. (but always as sing.) of an unused noun

AV-before 1137, face 390, presence 76, because 67, sight 40, countenance 30, from 27, person 21, upon 20, of 20, ...me 18, against 17, ...him 16, open 13, for 13, toward 9, misc 195; 2109

1) face
1a) face, faces
1b) presence, person
1c) face (of seraphim or cherubim)
1d) face (of animals)
1e) face, surface (of ground)
1f) as adv of loc/temp
1f1) before and behind, toward, in front of, forward, formerly, from beforetime, before
1g) with prep
1g1) in front of, before, to the front of, in the presence of, in the face of, at the face or front of, from the presence of, from before, from before the face of
(Online Bible Dictionary)...


But while he cannot claim originality for the term, Tertullian was a careful writer mindful of the Latin word's meaning. 'Persona' was a term with legal implications. Legal consequences had built up upon the base of the word's literal foundation of a 'mask' distinguishing a character in a drama, thus, a person:

"persona, a mask, esp. as worn by actors in Greek and Roman drama.

TRANSF., (1) role, part, character, person represented by an actor...(2) in gen., the part which anyone plays...(3) a personality, individuality, character." (Cassell's Latin Dictionary)
These legal implications clustered around the idea that a 'person' is one competent to give legal testimony. Is this implication accurate when talking about the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit? Most emphatically!: Three Witnesses....

Bible-believers dislike using extra-biblical terminology: "If anyone speaks, let him speak as the oracles of God..." (1 Peter 4:11). When Hippolytus wrote, in Greek, of 'one God in three persons,' the accusation he was using extra-biblical terminology would have been incomprehensible. As we've seen, the Bible freely applies 'prosopon' to God. 'Prosopon' means what 'person' means...and then some...

There is no one-word English translation for 'prosopon' suited for all instances. English translators are obliged to render this one word by a variety of English words: 'face,' 'presence,' 'person.' So 'one God in three persons' may appear to an English reader as unbiblical. How it appears to readers of Tagalog or Lithuanian I couldn't say; the New Testament, after all, is written in Greek, and the early church argued in Greek. Nevertheless, if one must have an alternative which 'works' in English translation, may I suggest the catch-phrase 'one God in three witnesses'? Father and Son are corroborating witnesses:

"It is also written in your law that the testimony of two men is true. I am One who bears witness of Myself, and the Father who sent Me bears witness of Me." (John 8:17-18).
The Holy Spirit corroborates their testimony:

"But when the Helper comes, whom I shall send to you from the Father...He will testify of Me." (John 15:26);
"And we are His witnesses to theses things, and so also is the Holy Spirit whom God has given to those who obey Him." (Acts 5:32)...

It might seem to some readers that this word and its correlate 'prosopon' combine such heterogeneous meanings that no conclusion can be drawn from their use. God does not speak to man by concocting a divine Esperanto, but employs existing human languages. Still, God does not select the words He uses at random, nor are these meanings unconnected by a common thread. Believers are commanded to seek God's face: "...if My people who are called by My name will humble themselves, and pray and seek My face ['paniym'] and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin and heal their land." (2 Chronicles 7:14). To turn one's back is to reject, to turn one's face to enter into relation: "For they have turned their back to Me, and not their face. But in the time of their trouble they will say, ‘Arise and save us.’" (Jeremiah 2:27). God-seekers pray for God's face to turn their way: "Turn us again, O God of hosts, and cause thy face ['paniym'] to shine; and we shall be saved." (Psalm 80:7). If the concept of God's "face" is so ridiculous as to earn the raucous mockery of the 'Oneness' Pentecostals, why then do believers pray for these things?

In Southeast Asia where villagers are menaced by man-eating tigers, they draw a little face on the back of a farmer's shirt. A tiger will not attack a man who is looking at him, whereas a man whose back is turned is easy prey. A crude sketch with two eyes, a nose, and smile is sufficient to convince the tiger, or so the villagers think. Those who thought this is what was in view when the Bible speaks of the face of God wandered into error: "Professing to be wise, they became fools, and changed the glory of the incorruptible God into an image made like corruptible man—and birds and four-footed animals and creeping things." (Romans 1:22-23). The children of Israel encountered the word of God face to face: "The LORD talked with you face to face ['paniym'] in the mount out of the midst of the fire..." (Deuteronomy 5:4), but not the villagers' smiley-face: "Take ye therefore good heed unto yourselves; for ye saw no manner of similitude on the day that the LORD spake unto you in Horeb out of the midst of the fire:..." (Deuteronomy 4:15).

To be 'in your face' is to be in your presence. The people of God travel in His company: "And because he loved thy fathers, therefore he chose their seed after them, and brought thee out in his sight ['paniym'] with his mighty power out of Egypt;..." (Deuteronomy 4:37). But not only do the people meet God face to face, there are face to face interactions within God: "For Christ is not entered into the holy places made with hands, which are the figures of the true; but into heaven itself, now to appear in the presence ['prosopon'] of God for us:..." (Hebrews 9:24). There is thus a relation or interface within God, as well as between God and His people. Since the Bible says so, in so many words, what is the problem in believing it?
http://thriceholy.net/prosopon.html

to split the person from the subsistence, making a prosoponic union instead of a hypostatic union.

Huh? Prosoponic union, hypostatic union? Again you're dealing with the COE here which means you gotta throw all of that out the window.

The One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic Church threw the COE out the window at Ephesus.

Quote
Can't you see that the 2 kyane are united in the parposa - through the qnome?

The she who gave birth to the parposa of Christ gave birth to the qnoma of the Son.

Quote
Oh btw, here are Peshitta NT verses for qnoma:

Interesting, I'll have to return to it when I have time.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: ialmisry on December 21, 2009, 01:01:00 PM
Quote
This diagram will help you out in understanding COE Christology:

(http://dukhrana.com/images/kyana_qnoma_parsopa.gif)

That's nice. I like a clear picture.

I couldn't quite put my finger on what was wrong with this picture, and then it popped up to me that the Persons of the Holy Trinity does not have parsope.  That's the problem.

The diagram is about the Incarnation not the Trinity.

My bad took a 2nd look at this and I see the connection to the Holy Trinity you're referring to. No the qnome of the Trinity do not have parsope, except for the Son and an Assyrian Catholic on this forum explained why (emphasis mine):

It is ok in English to do this (Second Person of the Holy Trinity) because there is no English term directly equivalent to Qnoma (as this term is understood in the Church of the East), and so this is the best that can be done in English for the Trinity.  In Aramaic, however, which is much more theologically important for us as Aramaic Christians, we do not use the specific Aramaic term of Parsopa in the Trinity, because for us Parsopa exists in the Material realm.  We do not say three Parsope, because the Father and the Holy Spirit were not incarnated in the Material realm and did not assume Matter, but the Son didThe Son assumed Matter, a Human Body, that was fashioned from the Virgin Mary, a Body that was animated by a rational Human Soul, and was united to Him.  The Son, in the incarnation, has entered the Material realm, and so this is how we understand Parsopa, the Union of the Son and Man.

God bless,

Rony

http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,20533.45.html

That's why you only see a parsopa for the Son, because the other two members of the Trinity did not incarnate - they did not enter the material realm, only the Son did.




See above the use of prosopon in the LXX on this issue.

Do you have a theological definition of kyana, qnoma and parsopa handy, so I know what you are saying?  The idea of prosopon existing only in the material world isn't in its orginal (or Biblical) meaning.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Rafa999 on December 21, 2009, 07:03:59 PM
Quote
The One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic Church threw the COE out the window at Ephesus.

Wrong. Cyril * epithet removed * who bribed his way out of prison to set up early a robber synod by leaving his church into the equivalent of one million dollars debt (today) set up a council before Nestorius and his partisans could reach it to defend themselves and the Eastern Church. The end of the story is that your position Isa entails that God change. God does not change:

For I am the LORD, I change not

Malachi 3:6

End of story. Either you believe that God changed his very substance in some sort of "miaphysite" union like an Oriental Orthodox  believes (not saying you are of such a position), or you believe that the Messiah has two natures with a certain degree of separation like the Orthodox Ecumenical council of Chalcedon which excommunicated the pagan belief I referred to. Anyways, this belief is on the wane- the Roman Catholic Church has re-declared since 1994 the Chalcedon decision in conjunction with the ACOE (the Common Christological Declaration). Further, as promised, here is the email of someone I believe is more qualified than myself to discuss the matter of Aramaic primacy:

Personal email address removed for security reasons

He is a reviser of the Aramaic texts, a first rate textual critic, knows Hebrew and Syriac inside out, an accomplished author, and baptised in the COE (but holds a few notable theological differences with it note you). Please contact him anybody interested so that you can see how Acts 20:28 was a non-Chalcedonian doctored reading from before Ephesus (third century) and how the ACOE was not influenced by Byzantine sphere like the EO and OO. By the way, the manuscript I have used to support all my views here is the oldest complete New Testament in existence (minus the last 5 books not considered by the COE part of canon). The Peshitta contains loan words precisely because it is the original and it was written in a vibrant Mediterranean culture where Greek was not read widely by Jews but some expressions abided within their language from the Greek. Lets also not mix issues- I consider the LXX more reliable than the MT, but this is another issue entirely.



Rafa999, in light of the moderatorial directive I posted HERE (http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,9572.msg387371.html#msg387371), I still need you to tell me whom you're calling "Monophysites".  So far, the only information I have from you, which predates my request, is that you're attaching this epithet to the Coptic Orthodox, so this is the only information I have to work with.  Therefore, if I see you continue to use the derogatory label "Monophysite" without identifying whom the "Monophysites" are, I will modify every use of the term out of your posts and issue you a formal warning for ignoring my directive.  (For the record, I edited your multiple uses of the forbidden word out of this post and replaced them with something more acceptable.  Please see THIS POST (http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,9572.msg387371.html#msg387371) for reference to administrative precedent.)

Additionally, even though your church may condemn St. Cyril of Alexandria as a heretic, he is revered very highly by almost all the members of this forum, whether they be Roman Catholic, Eastern Orthodox, or Oriental Orthodox.  Feel free to express disagreement with his doctrine, but do not disparage his memory by calling him a heretic or accusing him of crimes without providing any evidence to substantiate your charges.  Regarding the allegations you have made of St. Cyril, you now have 72 hours to back them up with solid evidence from reputable sources or recant them, or they will disappear from your post and you will receive a formal warning for slandering a saint of the EO/OO/RC churches.

- PeterTheAleut
Faith Issues Section Moderator
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Rafa999 on December 21, 2009, 07:43:47 PM
I am also pleased to have the email of someone who can act as an official spokesperson for the ACOE at hand. Please mail the Reverend Father Qasha Genard Lazar after Christmas so you can speak to him about whatever issues you have: personal email address removed to protect account owner from Internet attacks

I highly suggest going to the Assyrian Church of the East Forum itself since a single priest is sometimes overwhelmed (ACOE priests are very very active, simply building, working, and instructing all day long non-stop, maybe it is better at the forum):

Link to competing forum removed pursuant to this point of forum policy:  http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,13455.msg186146.html#msg186146 (http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,13455.msg186146.html#msg186146)



Please do not post personal email addresses on this forum.  Doing so exposes the email accounts to spambots, spiders, web crawlers, and other Internet security threats for which the administrators and moderators of this OC.net discussion forum don't want to be held responsible.  If you wish to share a personal email address via private message with someone who requests it, that is acceptable.

- PeterTheAleut
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: minasoliman on December 21, 2009, 07:48:18 PM
oh boy...here we go...

Rafa, I'm sure we can learn a lot from you.  But your condescending tone only puts you in a bad position.  Calling us Monophysites and Cyril a heretic can put you at odds.  Instead, you can say you disagree with Cyril and the non-Chalcedonians.

Can't you see many people are confused from your Christology.  YOu say you believe in a degree of separation of natures.  To us, both EO and OO, this is heresy.

Second, have you even asked these people if it's okay to post their emails?  Thirdly, some of us might rather ask you here in the forums, or if you can't, if you know other people from your church who can join us in oc.net and have discussions with us.  Maybe we can make a new section for the ACOE, and maybe we can even make an extra private forums if more of your church group joins this site and we can have open debates on each other's Church traditions.

I have many many questions that I'd like to ask.

For instance, it strikes me as interesting that you hail St. Cyril as a heretic and yet you also say that your church lifted all anathemas against all our churches.  If that's so, does that mean officially St. Cyril is no longer considered a heretic by your church?

God bless.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: ialmisry on December 21, 2009, 08:39:22 PM
Quote
The One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic Church threw the COE out the window at Ephesus.

Wrong. Cyril the heretic who bribed his way out of prison to set up early a robber synod by leaving his church into the equivalent of one million dollars debt (today) set up a council before Nestorius and his partisans could reach it to defend themselves and the Eastern Church.

Well, if St. Cyril was a briber and embelizer, he was a briber and embelizer who taught the Truth, though, since St. Cyril was never imprisoned, I am not sure what you are talking about.  Are you?


Quote
The end of the story is that your position Isa entails that God change.
No, it does not.


Quote
God does not change:

For I am the LORD, I change not

Malachi 3:6

The Word became flesh dwellt among us.  St. John.

Quote
End of story. Either you believe that God changed his very substance in some sort of "miaphysite" union like a Monophysite believes (not saying you are of such a position),


Neither the miaphysite nor I believe any such thing.  

Quote
or you believe that the Messiah has two natures with a certain degree of separation like the Orthodox Ecumenical council of Chalcedon which excommunicated the pagan belief I referred to.

The Definition of Chalcedon:
Quote
....on account of those who have taken in hand to corrupt the mystery of the dispensation [i.e. the Incarnation] and who shamelessly pretend that he who was born of the holy Virgin Mary was a mere man, it receives the synodical letters of the Blessed Cyril, Pastor of the Church of Alexandria, addressed to Nestorius and the Easterns, judging them suitable, for the refutation of the frenzied folly of Nestorius, and for the instruction of those who long with holy ardour for a knowledge of the saving symbol....For it opposes those who would rend the mystery of the dispensation into a Duad of SonsFollowing the holy Fathers we teach with one voice that the Son [of God] and our Lord Jesus Christ is to be confessed as one and the same [Person], that he is perfect in Godhead and perfect in manhood, very God and very man, of a reasonable soul and [human] body consisting, consubstantial with the Father as touching his Godhead, and consubstantial with us as touching his manhood; made in all things like unto us, sin only excepted; begotten of his Father before the worlds according to his Godhead; but in these last days for us men and for our salvation born [into the world] of the Virgin Mary, the Mother of God according to his manhood.  This one and the same Jesus Christ, the only-begotten Son [of God] must be confessed to be in two natures unconfusedly, immutably, indivisibly, inseparably [united], and that without the distinction of natures being taken away by such union, but rather the peculiar property of each nature being preserved and being united in one Person and subsistence, not separated or divided into two persons
http://www.ccel.org/ccel/schaff/npnf214.xi.xiii.html


 
Quote
Anyways, this belief is on the wane- the Roman Catholic Church has re-declared since 1994 the Chalcedon decision in conjunction with the ACOE (the Common Christological Declaration).
This is why I disagree with learned and irenic Ryondish, quoted above, for whom I've had a great deal of respect and admiration since my days on Catholic Answers: the terminology that the Chaldeans use, but with a Catholic explanation, is the same that the Nestorians would use for their beliefs.  It is because of this confusion, common among the "unions" in submission to the Vatican, that we reject such unions: either the Vatican and the Chaldeans believe Ephesus with us, or they reject it with the COE.

Quote
Further, as promised, here is the email of someone I believe is more qualified than myself to discuss the matter of Aramaic primacy:

Personal email address removed for security reasons

Does he know you are posting his email address?

Quote
He is a reviser of the Aramaic texts, a first rate textual critic, knows Hebrew and Syriac inside out,

How's his Greek?

Quote
an accomplished author, and baptised in the COE (but holds a few notable theological differences with it note you).

Then why was he baptized by it? You say notable: that would strike me as meaing "important enough to not to be in communion with."

 
Quote
Please contact him anybody interested


why don't you first contact him and make sure your are extending invitations he agrees with?

Quote
so that you can see how Acts 20:28 was a monophysite doctored reading from before Ephesus (third century)

I have already shown you the actual text from a Bible predating Ephesus.

Quote
and how the ACOE was not influenced by Byzantine sphere like the EO and OO.


Byzantine sphere, like Jerusalem? Bethlehem?  Nazareth? Galilee? Damascus?  Antioch?  Rome?  Corinth? Thessalonica? Colosae? Ephesus? Phillippi?...

Quote
By the way, the manuscript I have used to support all my views here is the oldest complete New Testament in existence (minus the last 5 books not considered by the COE part of canon).

No, it is not the oldest, which can be shown by the text itself, and the dating of the codex and writing.

Quote
The Peshitta contains loan words precisely because it is the original and it was written in a vibrant Mediterranean culture where Greek was not read widely by Jews but some expressions abided within their language from the Greek.

The Peshitta has a relationship with several other Syriac versions of the NT.  The versions each have their particularities throughout, e.g. the Heraklean translates the Greek slavishly, the Philoxenian merely corrects the Syriac on the Greek, the Old Syriac loose translation, etc.  When we look at the Greek NT, however, we find, not a style in which the whole is in, but each individual book has its own: Luke's Greek is better than Mark's, etc.  We would not expect that disparaty in the Greek NT unless the books were translated at different times by different translators (as is the case in the LXX), which has no evidence in its favor (for one thing, no Aramaic NT show the same distinctions between the books), or the Greek is original.
http://books.google.com/books?id=_5IuQ1YXtgQC&pg=PR4&dq=Syriac+versions+Kiraz&cd=2#v=onepage&q=Philoxenian&f=false


Quote
Lets also not mix issues- I consider the LXX more reliable than the MT, but this is another issue entirely.
I'lll agree with you there.



Personal email address removed from quote box for security reasons...  - PtA
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: ialmisry on December 21, 2009, 08:45:53 PM
I am also pleased to have the email of someone who can act as an official spokesperson for the ACOE at hand. Please mail the Reverend Father Qasha Genard Lazar after Christmas so you can speak to him about whatever issues you have: personal email address removed to protect account owner from Internet attacks

I highly suggest going to the Assyrian Church of the East Forum itself since a single priest is sometimes overwhelmed (ACOE priests are very very active, simply building, working, and instructing all day long non-stop, maybe it is better at the forum):

http://www.assyrianchurch.com/forum/

Again, I should think that you should first speak to Fr. Lazar before inviting us.


My question would start with the theological COE definition of kyanah, qnoma, and parsopa.



Personal email address removed from quote box for security reasons  - PtA
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: ialmisry on December 21, 2009, 08:47:40 PM


Can't you see many people are confused from your Christology.  

I fear that we are NOT confused.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Rafa999 on December 21, 2009, 09:11:01 PM
I have spoken to Brother Andrew if it is ok for you folks to mail him, you can of course mail him. Father Genard is at the moment a bit overwhelmed, I think it would be best if you mailed him after Christmas. Now...for the "charges" : Rome agrees with us. They have never agreed with us on pretty much anything. You know what that means? It means they know that this is a serious matter and that you better agree with it or else your in some very deep trouble. Do you say to me that God can change? He just said to Malachi that he does not change. You know perfectly well that Miltha is a complicated term which cannot simply be translated into "the word became flesh". Cite the Peshitta again to our readers word for word as to what is really in that verse so they see how complicated things really are. Third...you just confessed Cyril was a briber and embezzler, so now we hold thieves and liars as saints? Fourth, by your own words in this thread or the other one we discussed on the ACOE, Khabouris is the most ancient semitic NT. Good luck in convincing me that a manuscript scribes threw in a trash heap with "Fool and Knave don't change the reading" engraved on it is more reliable than the text Mar Mari and Addai handed to believers in person. The oldest Christian liturgy is of the COE as you know as well. Again I am not qualified enough for this subject, however I can say that not all syriac is made equal, and that the garbage forged down by Philoxenus of Mabbug and Rabbulah of Edessa is not the Peshitta used by the COE. Please mail me in private for the emails I handed down (this is a large forum after all).


the peculiar property of each nature being preserved

you did not highlight this in the definition of Chalcedon Isa.

Quote
does that mean officially St. Cyril is no longer considered a heretic by your church

I heard the COE lifted all of its anathemas Mina, I will have to verify this actually, if Cyril has stopped being referred to as a heretic.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: ialmisry on December 21, 2009, 09:45:35 PM
I have spoken to Brother Andrew if it is ok for you folks to mail him, you can of course mail him. Father Genard is at the moment a bit overwhelmed, I think it would be best if you mailed him after Christmas. Now...for the "charges" : Rome agrees with us.

You may not have noticed, but since 1054 at the latest, that doesn't mean anything.


Quote
They have never agreed with us on pretty much anything. You know what that means?

nothing.

Quote
It means they know that this is a serious matter and that you better agree with it or else your in some very deep trouble. Do you say to me that God can change? He just said to Malachi that he does not change. You know perfectly well that Miltha is a complicated term which cannot simply be translated into "the word became flesh".

Yes, it can, like it was translated into w'mithla vesra h'wa.

Quote
Cite the Peshitta again to our readers word for word as to what is really in that verse so they see how complicated things really are.

and-Word-the flesh-the was.  simple.

Quote
Third...you just confessed Cyril was a briber and embezzler,

No, I said "if..."  I forgot to put in the "even."  Your point has no point even if he was a briber and embezzler.


Quote
so now we hold thieves and liars as saints?

Pope St. Cyril did nothing that Pope St. Athanasius didn't do.

Quote
Fourth, by your own words in this thread or the other one we discussed on the ACOE, Khabouris is the most ancient semitic NT.

I'd like to have my "own words" quoted, as Khabouris is no such thing.  The Old Syriac is the oldest (only the Gospels), and even it is not the oldest, being preceded by the Diatessaron (it, however, exists only in Persian and Arabic translation, and quotes in Armenian, besides recently discovered Syriac fragments).
http://books.google.com/books?id=_5IuQ1YXtgQC&pg=PP8&dq=Kiraz+Old+Syriac&cd=4#v=onepage&q=Kiraz%20Old%20Syriac&f=false


Quote
Good luck in convincing me that a manuscript scribes threw in a trash heap with "Fool and Knave don't change the reading" engraved on it is more reliable than the text Mar Mari and Addai handed to believers in person.

I showed you Sinaiticus, not Vaticanus.  You also don't know who wrote the comment, nor his authority for doing so.  Nor have you said was the reading that was wrong to which the comment is written. I also don't know of Vaticanus being thrown in the trash.

Quote
The oldest Christian liturgy is of the COE as you know as well.

No, it is the Liturgy of St. James, the Brother of God, which the Syriac Orthodox Church preserves, along with the EO.

Quote
Again I am not qualified enough for this subject, however I can say
No, if you are not qualified, you cannot smear the great Philoxenus and Rabbulah, in particular as the Fathers supported him against Ibas, who I know the Nestorian letter attributed to him is condemned by the Fathers of the Ecumenical Councils as much as the Nestorians praised it.


Quote
that not all syriac is made equal, and that the garbage forged down by Philoxenus of Mabbug and Rabbulah of Edessa is not the Peshitta used by the COE.

No, evidently it has its own Nestorian forged text.


the peculiar property of each nature being preserved

you did not highlight this in the definition of Chalcedon Isa.

Because I don't think you missed that part.  In fact, you latch onto it, and forget the rest.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Rafa999 on December 21, 2009, 10:29:05 PM
We know full well that Rabullah of Edessa was universally considered by all Syriac speaking Christians as "the Devil of Edessa" and as a forger of scriptures. "Old Syriac" Sinaiticus is so well considered by scribes that on the back a story of the "great saint thecla" is scratched on it. I highly doubt manuscripts of high importance are treated this way.Philoxenus of Mabbug's translation was also considered horrendous by Syriac speakers and everybody interested should search the records on this. The Diatesseron is a "harmonization" of the gospels not the four Gospels per se. The Peshitta does not come from the Diatesseron, it is the reverse- the Diatesseron of Tatian is harmonized from the Peshitta. As for the reading on the manuscript which was wrong, it was Hebrews 1:3. I wonder what it was that was being modified, does it have something to do with what we are talking about now  ::)
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: PeterTheAleut on December 21, 2009, 10:45:44 PM
Just to answer any questions regarding how posters should refer to the saints of other traditions in the course of their discussions, I found this post at the top of the public Oriental Orthodox Discussion board.  Granted, Faith Issues is a different board with a different area of focus, but I think we can draw from the precedent set here many of the principles Fr. Anastasios would probably like to see apply to Faith Issues, as well.

http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,3758.0.html
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: ialmisry on December 22, 2009, 12:36:20 AM
We know full well that Rabullah of Edessa was universally considered by all Syriac speaking Christians as "the Devil of Edessa" and as a forger of scriptures.

The Fathers at Ephesus knew no such thing, and plenty of Syriac Orthodox Christians were firm supporters of Rabulla, against his unworthy successor Hibas.


Quote
"Old Syriac" Sinaiticus is so well considered by scribes that on the back a story of the "great saint thecla" is scratched on it. I highly doubt manuscripts of high importance are treated this way.

That wasn't the question: you claimed that Khabouris was the oldest Semitic NT, and I was just pointing out that it demonstrably was not.  As for reusing parchment etc., are you familiar with palimpsests?  You would be suprised with what you find: for one, many unical Bibles were reused just for the simple reason that minsucle script had replaced it.  In this case, the Peshitta text supplanted the Old Syriac, which fell into disuse.  And Thekla is a great saint: I was at her shrine at Ma'lula, where they still speak Aramaic (not Syriac) and the sweetest water at the spring in the monastery.  Ambrosia.

Quote
 Philoxenus of Mabbug's translation was also considered horrendous by Syriac speakers and everybody interested should search the records on this.

You can check the work I already linked:The Syriac New Testament By George Anton Kiraz, James Murdock, Horace L. Hastings
http://books.google.com/books?id=_5IuQ1YXtgQC&pg=PP8&dq=Kiraz+Old+Syriac&cd=4#v=onepage&q=Kiraz%20Old%20Syriac&f=false
The Catholic Epistles and the Revalation may be from this version (btw, their absence is a problem for Aramaic primacy), which seemed to have been done for theological book rather than devotional use.

Quote
The Diatesseron is a "harmonization" of the gospels not the four Gospels per se. The Peshitta does not come from the Diatesseron, it is the reverse- the Diatesseron of Tatian is harmonized from the Peshitta.
It predates the Peshitta's existence, which replaced it.  It also may have been in Greek, or in Aramaic, i.e. not Syriac.  Btw, you are aware that Tatian was St. Justin's student at Rome: St. Justin himself uses a Gospel harmony which was in Greek.


Quote
As for the reading on the manuscript which was wrong, it was Hebrews 1:3. I wonder what it was that was being modified, does it have something to do with what we are talking about now  ::)
Well, let's see:
It is this in the Patriarchal text:
ὃς ὢν ἀπαύγασμα τῆς δόξης καὶ χαρακτὴρ τῆς ὑποστάσεως αὐτοῦ, φέρων τε τὰ πάντα τῷ ρήματι τῆς δυνάμεως αὐτοῦ, δι' ἑαυτοῦ καθαρισμὸν ποιησάμενος τῶν ἁμαρτιῶν ἡμῶν ἐκάθισεν ἐν δεξιᾷ τῆς μεγαλωσύνης ἐν ὑψηλοῖς
http://www.apostoliki-diakonia.gr/bible/bible.asp?contents=new_testament/contents_E_Paulou_Evraious.asp&main=E_Paulou_Evraious&file=3.1.14.1.htm

ος ων απαυγασμα της δοξης και χαρακτηρ της υποστασεως αυτου φερων τε τα παντα τω ρηματι της δυναμεως αυτου δι εαυτου καθαρισμον ποιησαμενος των αμαρτιων ημων εκαθισεν εν δεξια της μεγαλωσυνης εν υψηλοις

Sinaiticus:οϲ ων απαυγαϲμα τηϲ δοξηϲ και χαρακτηρ τηϲ ϋποϲταϲεωϲ αυτου φερω  τε τα παντα τω ρηματι τηϲ δυναμεωϲ αυτου καθαριϲμο  των αμαρτιων ┬ ποιηϲαμενοϲ εκαθιϲε  εν δεξια τηϲ μεγαλωϲυνηϲ εν υψηλοιϲ
http://www.codexsinaiticus.org/en/manuscript.aspx?=Submit%20Query&book=46&chapter=1&lid=en&side=r&verse=3&zoomSlider=0

It is this in the Peshitta:
ܕܗܘܝܘ ܨܡܚܐ ܕܫܘܒܚܗ ܘܨܠܡܐ ܕܐܝܬܘܬܗ ܘܐܚܝܕ ܟܠ ܒܚܝܠܐ ܕܡܠܬܗ ܘܗܘ ܒܩܢܘܡܗ ܥܒܕ ܕܘܟܝܐ ܕܚܛܗܝܢ ܘܝܬܒ ܥܠ ܝܡܝܢܐ ܕܪܒܘܬܐ ܒܡܪܘܡܐ

which is the same in your Khabouris.
http://dukhrana.com/khabouris/download.php

For the Greek and Aramaically challenged, let's see the difference:in Greek
http://interlinearbible.org/hebrews/1.htm
http://books.google.com/books?id=IH43fBkW3JcC&pg=PT512&dq=Peshitta+greek+New+testament+Hebrews&lr=&cd=14#v=onepage&q=&f=false

Not an enormous difference.

In Vaticanus, note probably refers to the change of φανερων "shining, manifest" to the standard reading φέρων "upholding" in Heb 1:3.
http://www-user.uni-bremen.de/~wie/Vaticanus/note1512.html

so I guess the answer to your question is no.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: witega on December 22, 2009, 03:07:50 AM
Rome agrees with us.

Actually Rome also says they agree with us (EO). And they signed documents that they agree with the Copts (OO). Since we rather clearly do not agree (not to mention you and the OO), Rome's willingness to agree doesn't carry a lot of weight (and while we're at it, do you agree with them on subordination of the Spirit and papal infallibility? if like us, you do not, why would you consider them doctrinal source worth citing?)
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: ozgeorge on December 22, 2009, 05:28:17 AM
Rome agrees with us.

Actually Rome also says they agree with us (EO). And they signed documents that they agree with the Copts (OO). Since we rather clearly do not agree (not to mention you and the OO), Rome's willingness to agree doesn't carry a lot of weight (and while we're at it, do you agree with them on subordination of the Spirit and papal infallibility? if like us, you do not, why would you consider them doctrinal source worth citing?)

Something has just occurred to me on reading this. Perhaps Rafa999 is part of the Assyrian Church of the East which the former Bishop, Mar Bawai Soro led into unity with the Pope?
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Rafa999 on December 22, 2009, 05:47:25 AM
No my friend, I have nothing to do with Ashur Soros, he tried to force the COE into submitting to papal authority, to dissolve the COE into Rome, something which earned him a defrocking. Relations with the RCC are improving again though from what I hear, the pope just gave a calculated speech asking for further dialogues and trying to "cover up" this recent trouble. I think it will be reciprocated by Patriarch Mar Dinkha or his successor God willing.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: ozgeorge on December 22, 2009, 05:53:58 AM
OK. I wasn't sure.
Mar Bawai is a personal friend of mine. I attended University with his sister.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: GregoryLA on December 22, 2009, 05:54:22 AM
Here are a couple of COE documents for those interested:

http://www.nestorian.org/nestorian_documents.html

The Nicene creed in Syriac used for threefold immersion is on that website. The COE approved the Nicean creed in 410 under Mar Isaac. Yes, the COE uses the correct formula ("In the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit"). As for the iconography issue, its sort of tricky, you see the COE was a very potent missionary force in the middle ages. In Asia, as you can see, some cases of local populations using iconography like other Christians occurred. By the way, there are actually Mongolian-Aramaic bibles in existence, the COE had followers all the way to Peking, in fact one of its patriarchs was Chinese. There's a book containing the travels of the Holy St. Bar Saumo which I highly recommend you read at Peshitta.org its called "The Monks of Kublai Khan" by Wallis Budget. Kublai Khan's mother was from the COE.



Thing is that the article that I linked to earlier has several examples from liturgical texts in the COE dating from fairly early (6th-1th cent. maybe) that clearly referred to icons in liturgical use.  Also, these liturgical texts were not composed by recent converts or semi-pagans but one was by the Catholicos of Babylon (I think.  Is that even the right title?
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: stashko on December 22, 2009, 06:04:25 AM
No my friend, I have nothing to do with Ashur Soros, he tried to force the COE into submitting to papal authority, to dissolve the COE into Rome, something which earned him a defrocking. Relations with the RCC are improving again though from what I hear, the pope just gave a calculated speech asking for further dialogues and trying to "cover up" this recent trouble. I think it will be reciprocated by Patriarch Mar Dinkha or his successor God willing.


Hello ..Question Do You Cross your selfs like we eastern orthodox do.....Right to left...
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Nazarene on December 22, 2009, 11:43:17 AM
Rafa,

The Copts are not Monophysite they are Miaphysite and there's a huge difference between these 2 doctrines, explained by a Copt here (http://www.peshitta.org/forum/viewtopic.php?f=22&t=798). Read what this guy says, it's in broken English but it helped me understand what they really believe.

Can't you see many people are confused from your Christology.  YOu say you believe in a degree of separation of natures.  To us, both EO and OO, this is heresy.

I've tried to explain it a bit before here: http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,20533.90.html (it's not easy). "Separation" seems to be major a concern for you guys, may ask why that is? What would "separation" between the natures of Messiah imply in your understanding? I have a feeling the COE's understanding of "separation" differs to yours. Or perhaps "separation" is the wrong choice of word, that's why I need you to answer this question.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: witega on December 22, 2009, 12:08:11 PM
Rafa,

The Copts are not Monophysite they are Miaphysite and there's a huge difference between these 2 doctrines, explained by a Copt here (http://www.peshitta.org/forum/viewtopic.php?f=22&t=798). Read what this guy says, it's in broken English but it helped me understand what they really believe.

Can't you see many people are confused from your Christology.  YOu say you believe in a degree of separation of natures.  To us, both EO and OO, this is heresy.

I've tried to explain it a bit before here: http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,20533.90.html (it's not easy). "Separation" seems to be major a concern for you guys, may ask why that is? What would "separation" between the natures of Messiah imply in your understanding? I have a feeling the COE's understanding of "separation" differs to yours. Or perhaps "separation" is the wrong choice of word, that's why I need you to answer this question.


From the moment of Incarnation, there was One Person. Meaning there was one actor (or experiencer in passive situations). Jesus wept, Jesus died, Jesus bled, Jesus walked on water, Jesus rose from the dead, Jesus reigns in Glory. Jesus is God. Jesus is man. So the God Jesus wept, the God Jesus died, the God Jesus bled and the man Jesus walked on water, the man Jesus rose from the dead, the man Jesus reigns in Glory.

Because we couple it "without confusion", if you want to get technical, then the weeping, dying in and bleeding occurred through His human nature and the rising from the dead and reigning in Glory occurred through His divine nature, and the walking on water through both--in the same way that if I say "I walked", technically it was my legs that made motions across the ground, not my brain or my fingertips. But as far as the Person, the subject, the actor/experiencer, its always One Person, Jesus the Christ. To intimate that Christ's humanity did anything or experienced anything without continuing and complete union with His divinity (i.e., Christ's human side died but God did not die) is to undercut our whole understanding of the Incarnation in which God made Himself man in order to rejoin humanity to the Divine. If Jesus Christ the man died, but God did not, then death continues to be a separation from the Divine and the Christian message is meaningless other than as a nice set of ethical teachings.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: minasoliman on December 22, 2009, 02:06:19 PM
Rafa,

The Copts are not Monophysite they are Miaphysite and there's a huge difference between these 2 doctrines, explained by a Copt here (http://www.peshitta.org/forum/viewtopic.php?f=22&t=798). Read what this guy says, it's in broken English but it helped me understand what they really believe.

Can't you see many people are confused from your Christology.  YOu say you believe in a degree of separation of natures.  To us, both EO and OO, this is heresy.

I've tried to explain it a bit before here: http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,20533.90.html (it's not easy). "Separation" seems to be major a concern for you guys, may ask why that is? What would "separation" between the natures of Messiah imply in your understanding? I have a feeling the COE's understanding of "separation" differs to yours. Or perhaps "separation" is the wrong choice of word, that's why I need you to answer this question.


A separation or a degree of separation to me entails something like that of a union between two persons, like a marriage.  When we talk about the union in Christ, it is like the union of the natures in man.

God bless.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Salpy on December 22, 2009, 06:33:24 PM
Also, as I understood it, "separation" would also mean that Christ was just a man who had the Word of God dwelling in him.  I think the Nestorians in the old days compared this to God dwelling in a temple.  This really would make Christ the same as the saints or prophets, who also had God dwelling in them.  It's not the same as God the Word becoming incarnate.

We also include the words "without confusion or mingling" to show that we don't believe in the other extreme, which Rafa accuses of:  that Christ's divinity and humanity mixed together to form some third nature which was neither fully human or divine.  We don't believe in that either.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Rafa999 on December 22, 2009, 11:28:19 PM
No my friend, I have nothing to do with Ashur Soros, he tried to force the COE into submitting to papal authority, to dissolve the COE into Rome, something which earned him a defrocking. Relations with the RCC are improving again though from what I hear, the pope just gave a calculated speech asking for further dialogues and trying to "cover up" this recent trouble. I think it will be reciprocated by Patriarch Mar Dinkha or his successor God willing.


Hello ..Question Do You Cross your selfs like we eastern orthodox do.....Right to left...

The Sign of the Cross is traditionally done with the three fingers (thumb, index and middle) of the right hand starting at the mouth, then forehead - stomach - right shoulder - left shoulder.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: stashko on December 22, 2009, 11:31:51 PM
No my friend, I have nothing to do with Ashur Soros, he tried to force the COE into submitting to papal authority, to dissolve the COE into Rome, something which earned him a defrocking. Relations with the RCC are improving again though from what I hear, the pope just gave a calculated speech asking for further dialogues and trying to "cover up" this recent trouble. I think it will be reciprocated by Patriarch Mar Dinkha or his successor God willing.


Hello ..Question Do You Cross your selfs like we eastern orthodox do.....Right to left...

The Sign of the Cross is traditionally done with the three fingers (thumb, index and middle) of the right hand starting at the mouth, then forehead - stomach - right shoulder - left shoulder.


Thank You ! where almost the same  ;D
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Rafa999 on December 22, 2009, 11:36:04 PM
I'd say there are bigger differences between the RCC and the Assyrian Church than between the Assyrian Church and Orthodox. The only folks Assyrians have a really hard time with from what I know are protestants who follow things never ever seen in the Apostolic tradition (the rapture anyone? Once saved always saved? These are doctrines of demons). The big issue right now with the RCC is its megalomaniac attempts at absorbing and dissolving the COE, less doctrine from what I understand.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: stashko on December 22, 2009, 11:56:30 PM
I'd say there are bigger differences between the RCC and the Assyrian Church than between the Assyrian Church and Orthodox. The only folks Assyrians have a really hard time with from what I know are protestants who follow things never ever seen in the Apostolic tradition (the rapture anyone? Once saved always saved? These are doctrines of demons). The big issue right now with the RCC is its megalomaniac attempts at absorbing and dissolving the COE, less doctrine from what I understand.

Hopefully by the grace of God , majority of the faithfull SCOE won't allow that to happen to be absorbed or desolved or unite...Patriarchs or what ever the titles are for them in your church, can be replaced if their  the cause of this union with rome that leads to your extinction   .....
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: John Larocque on December 23, 2009, 12:11:41 AM
Quote
The Peshitta has a relationship with several other Syriac versions of the NT.  The versions each have their particularities throughout, e.g. the Heraklean translates the Greek slavishly, the Philoxenian merely corrects the Syriac on the Greek, the Old Syriac loose translation, etc.  When we look at the Greek NT, however, we find, not a style in which the whole is in, but each individual book has its own: Luke's Greek is better than Mark's, etc.  We would not expect that disparaty in the Greek NT unless the books were translated at different times by different translators (as is the case in the LXX), which has no evidence in its favor (for one thing, no Aramaic NT show the same distinctions between the books), or the Greek is original.

The sources that are of most interest to me are the Old Syriac (predating the Peshitta), and the the one Nestle-Aland refers to as SyrPal. The Syriac Palestinian version has some affinity with so-called Caesarian variants also found in Armenian and Georgian translations and codices (including Empress Theodora's Codex and Codex Koridethi), and one of the two groups of Greek Lectionaries that underly the Patriarchal version of the New Testament. (The other group of Greek Lectionaries used by Antoniades were closer to the "Lucianic" or Byzantine norm). Odd that most of the main witnesses originated in what was traditional Oriental Orthodox territory.

I read that the Old Syriac (superseded by the Peshitta) has some parallels with the Old Latin (which was superseded by the Vulgate).
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Rafa999 on December 23, 2009, 12:42:01 AM
You will have to examine the manuscript tradition very carefully, starting at the website I gave (Peshitta.org) you will see that the Peshitta predates old Syriac, that work is the product of the pen of Rabullah of Edessa, we even have his famous "Evangelion d'Mephareshe" wording on old scratch showing that this can be traced down to him. We also have Mar Aphrahat quoting the COE version of the Peshitta before Rabullah's Grandmother was born, so there's no way the Peshitta came from Sinaiticus. I'd say the Peshitta and the Vulgate agree very well, in fact Jerome quoted the Hebrews 2:9 Peshitta reading in the Vulgate if I am correct.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: John Larocque on December 23, 2009, 01:53:07 AM
I'd say the Peshitta and the Vulgate agree very well, in fact Jerome quoted the Hebrews 2:9 Peshitta reading in the Vulgate if I am correct.

The UBS3 aligns "kariti qeou" against against "kwris theou." Is this what you mean?

http://www.witheringfig.com/new-testament/hebrews-29-separated-by-grace-part-2/

Quote
What then is the external evidence in favor of each reading? The manuscript evidence in support of χάριτι θεοῦ is very strong. The major manuscripts that favor this reading include P46 א A B C D 33 81 330 614 itar,b, comp, d, v vg copsa, bo, fay, as well as others.1 In addition, Origen, Athanasius, Didymus, Chrysostom, Cyril, Theodoret, and Jerome all testify that the reading exists. Therefore, we have an early reading that is supported by weighty manuscripts spread across several text-types and regions.2  From the B-Text (Alexandrian) there is P46 א B 33, etc.; from the D-Text (Western) there is D, as well as the evidence of the earlier “fathers”;3  and from the A-Text (Byzantine) there is A, as well as a host of unmentioned minuscules.4  The combination of these external criteria typically leads to an “A” rating.

By comparison, the manuscript evidence in favor of χωρὶς θεοῦ is very weak. Aside from 0121b, which is late, there are no uncial manuscripts.5 Additional support for χωρὶς θεοῦ is provided by the cursive 1739,6 a few manuscripts of the Vulgate, Origen, Theodore of Mopsuestia, a group known as the Nestorians (according to Pseudo-Oecumenius), Theodoret, Ambrose, Jerome, Vigilius, Fulgentius, and syrp mss.7 Here we have a few late manuscripts and a host of patristic witnesses who have varying opinions on the validity of the reading. In sum, the external evidence in favor of χωρὶς θεοῦ is tenuous at best. Therefore, in terms of external evidence, χάριτι θεοῦ should be preferred to χωρὶς θεοῦ.

The author then presents a defence of the latter reading (separated by Grace), citing Bart Ehrman.

Here's kind of an evangelical retort to Ehrman and company:

http://evangelicaltextualcriticism.blogspot.com/2006/05/brock-on-hebrews-29.html

Quote
S.P. Brock, 'Hebrews 2:9b in Syriac Tradition', Novum Testamentum 27 (1983) 236-44.

As would be expected from this author, we have a thorough review of the Syriac evidence for χωρις θεου vs χαριτι θεου. He considers 31 Peshitta mss from the fifth through to the thirteenth centuries. The data defy brief summary, since there were clearly a number of 'corrections' within mss, though broadly speaking the reading 'apart from God' found favour in the Church of the East ('Nestorians'), while readings with the word 'grace' found favour in the West (Syrian Orthodox and Maronite). Brock argues that 'grace' was the earliest reading of the Peshitta, though his conclusion is not indisputable.

The other thing that he does is to show how the different readings in Hebrews 2:9 were used in Christological controversy during the fifth and sixth centuries.

All the known printed versions of the Vulgate from the past four centuries (including the textual-critical Stuttgart) read "ut gratia Dei." The UBS claims the Peshitta aligns with the Western reading. This other variant seems to be an East Syrian thing.

http://evangelicaltextualcriticism.blogspot.com/2006/05/evidence-in-hebrews-29.html

Quote
It is also claimed in Ehrman's Orthodox Corruption (p. 146) and in Metzger's Textual Commentary (2nd edn; p. 594) that Peshitta manuscripts support this reading. I'm wondering why Wallace, Ehrman and Metzger agree that this is the Peshitta's reading. In Barbara Aland and Andreas Juckel, Das Neue Testament in syrischer Überlieferung, II. Die Paulinischen Briefe, Teil 3: 1./2. Thessalonicherbrief, 1./2. Timotheusbrief, Titusbrief, Philemonbrief und Hebräerbrief (Berlin: De Gruyter, 2002, pp. 262-264) there is no record of any Peshitta ms with this reading.

There are, however, readings of Severus of Antioch, Theodore of Mopsuestia and Babai the Great that appear to support 'without God'
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Rafa999 on December 23, 2009, 02:33:47 AM
Quote
The UBS3 aligns "kariti qeou" against against "kwris theou." Is this what you mean?

http://www.witheringfig.com/new-testament/hebrews-29-separated-by-grace-part-2/

Yes, it reads "apart from God" (poor translation on my part note). This was from day one the COE reading, Mar Babai the Great who rebuilt the church after the Sassanid persecutions, Theodore of Mopsuestia and Severus of Antioch did indeed use this reading. There's an entire thread devoted to this at Peshitta.org by the way.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: minasoliman on December 23, 2009, 11:46:50 AM
Are the writings of Mar Babai translated and accessible?
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: minasoliman on December 23, 2009, 12:00:41 PM
I was skimming through this writing by Theodore of Mopsuestia (I should read the whole thing though, which I'll do when I have the time) and I just wanted to give an example of what we as Orthodox find quite objectionable even in the language of Christology:

Quote
Our Fathers rightly thought not to overlook the humanity of our Lord which possesses such an ineffable union with Divine nature, but added: And in one Lord Jesus Christ, as if they had said, 'We believe in one Lord who is of Divine nature, to which the name of Lord and God is truly due.' In speaking of God the Word they said: By whom are all things, as the evangelist said: "All things were made by Him, and nothing was made without Him." It is as if they had said, ' This one we understand to be one Lord who is of the Divine nature of God the Father, who for our salvation put on a man in whom He dwelt and through whom He appeared and became known to mankind. It is this man who was said by the angel that he would be called Jesus, who was anointed with the Holy Ghost in whom He was perfected and justified, as the blessed Paul testifies.' After saying these and showing the Divine nature and the human nature which God put on, they added: The "Only Begotten Son," the "first-born" of all creatures. With these two words they alluded to the two natures, and by the difference between the words they made us understand the difference between the natures. From the fact also that they referred both words to the one person of the Son they showed us the close union between the two natures. They did not make use of these words out of their own head but they took them from the teaching of Holy Writ. The blessed Paul said: "Of whom Christ in the flesh, who is God over all," not that He is God by nature from the fact that He is of the House of David in the flesh, but he said "in the flesh" in order to indicate the human nature that was assumed. He said "God over all" in order to indicate the Divine nature which is higher than all, and which is the Lord. He used both words of one person in order to teach the close union of the two natures, and in order to make manifest the majesty and the honour that came to the man who was assumed by God who put Him on.

When you differentiate the natures of Christ to the point you give the human nature a separate pronoun, that to me is troublesome language, two personist if you will, even though Theodore of Mopsuestia says he believes in one person, but continues to say the man was called Jesus, and God the Word assumed Him, not "it" but Him.  Neither is it acknowledged that God the Word IS Jesus, but rather assumed Jesus.

To be honest, the definition Nazerene gives to hypostasis is fine by me, because if anything Severus of Antioch was close to that definition.  But I would say that Severus of Antioch would condemn the way one would talk about Christ as Theodore of Mopsuestia did (let alone the two natures part, which is a separate discussion).  So there's more to it than just different definitions of terms in my opinion.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Nazarene on December 23, 2009, 06:24:51 PM
Shalom witega, minasoliman & Salpy, thank you for answering my question. Now I have a better idea on how to answer questions regarding the COE's Christology:

From the moment of Incarnation, there was One Person. Meaning there was one actor (or experiencer in passive situations).

The COE is in agreement with this, they confess that Meshikha is one parsopa. And contrary to what Isa posted earlier from Payne Smith's Syriac Lexicon, Prof. Sebastien Brock has proven with his research that this is not the original meaning of qnoma, which was discussed on this page: http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,20533.45.html.

Jesus wept, Jesus died, Jesus bled, Jesus walked on water, Jesus rose from the dead, Jesus reigns in Glory. Jesus is God. Jesus is man. So the God Jesus wept, the God Jesus died, the God Jesus bled and the man Jesus walked on water, the man Jesus rose from the dead, the man Jesus reigns in Glory.

I'm with you so far, though the COE will object to some of the points above, that is until you get to this bit...

Because we couple it "without confusion", if you want to get technical,

If you're gonna say things like "the God Jesus died" or "the God Jesus blead", then please get technical with the COE, cause if you don't it will cause confusion - always.

then the weeping, dying in and bleeding occurred through His human nature and the rising from the dead and reigning in Glory occurred through His divine nature, and the walking on water through both--in the same way that if I say "I walked", technically it was my legs that made motions across the ground, not my brain or my fingertips.

This is exactly what the COE believes.

But as far as the Person, the subject, the actor/experiencer, its always One Person, Jesus the Christ.

Yes they believe this too.

To intimate that Christ's humanity did anything or experienced anything without continuing and complete union with His divinity (i.e., Christ's human side died but God did not die) is to undercut our whole understanding of the Incarnation in which God made Himself man in order to rejoin humanity to the Divine. If Jesus Christ the man died, but God did not, then death continues to be a separation from the Divine and the Christian message is meaningless other than as a nice set of ethical teachings.

As long as the EOs & OOs keep "getting technical" with the COE as you did above, I believe future dialogue will be more fruitful than in the past.

A separation or a degree of separation to me entails something like that of a union between two persons, like a marriage.  When we talk about the union in Christ, it is like the union of the natures in man.

God bless.

Not sure I'm understanding what you're saying. Does man (i.e. in general) consist of more than one nature or are you refering to the "body, soul & spirit" combo that a human being consists of?

Also, as I understood it, "separation" would also mean that Christ was just a man who had the Word of God dwelling in him.  I think the Nestorians in the old days compared this to God dwelling in a temple.  This really would make Christ the same as the saints or prophets, who also had God dwelling in them.  It's not the same as God the Word becoming incarnate.

To be fair Messiah did say, concerning His body: "destroy this temple and I will rebuild it in 3 days". Sure God the Miltha, who was invisible became visible by "clothing" Himself in a "human temple" but this is a gross oversimplication of the Incarnation.

We also include the words "without confusion or mingling" to show that we don't believe in the other extreme, which Rafa accuses of:  that Christ's divinity and humanity mixed together to form some third nature which was neither fully human or divine.  We don't believe in that either.

I think Rafa is assuming that Monophysitism, which was rife in Alexandria and elsewhere at a time eventually became the official creed of the Copts, but this not the case.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: ialmisry on December 23, 2009, 06:54:43 PM
You will have to examine the manuscript tradition very carefully, starting at the website I gave (Peshitta.org) you will see that the Peshitta predates old Syriac,

Only the OT: the NT Old Syriac is more archaic and a freer translation of the Greek than the Peshitta, which came later and was a more literal translation.  The Old Syriac does use the Peshitta OT for quotes in the NT, rather than depending on the LXX in the NT.
http://books.google.com/books?id=_5IuQ1YXtgQC&pg=PP8&dq=kiraz+Old+Syriac+old+Testament+Peshitto&cd=1#v=onepage&q=kiraz%20Old%20Syriac%20old%20Testament%20Peshitto&f=false
The Syriac New Testament By George Anton Kiraz, James Murdock, Horace L. Hastings

Quote
that work is the product of the pen of Rabullah of Edessa,

Its beginnig predates Rabullah (if you are refering to the bishop) by a couple centuries.



Quote
we even have his famous "Evangelion d'Mephareshe" wording on old scratch showing that this can be traced down to him. We also have Mar Aphrahat quoting the COE version of the Peshitta before Rabullah's Grandmother was born, so there's no way the Peshitta came from Sinaiticus.

You seem to depend on Was the New Testament Really Written in Greek? - Edition 1b - Standard Version By Raphael Lataster
http://books.google.com/books?id=hY1lguX6oo8C&pg=PA275&dq=Mar+aphrahat&cd=3#v=onepage&q=Mar%20aphrahat&f=false

The problem is that the Peshitta wasn't fixed as a text until the 5th century, for borrowing a wording found in the 4th century doesn't prove much.



Quote
I'd say the Peshitta and the Vulgate agree very well, in fact Jerome quoted the Hebrews 2:9 Peshitta reading in the Vulgate if I am correct.
That might explain why the Vulgate agree very well, if Jerome is quoting the Peshitta.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Rafa999 on December 23, 2009, 07:04:32 PM
Isa, I like you man. You really are a watchman of the Church keeping an eye out for cunningly devised fables, I really respect that. However you cannot truly believe that only the Greek survived. Are you saying to me that the Muslims can read their Quran in Arabic, the Jews their OT in Hebrew (never mind masoretic corruption later on, they can read it in their script and cultural perspective) but we have to settle for a translaton? Are you saying that the angel of the fiery flame Satan did a better job preserving the Quran than God did preserving HIS scripture? That is totally unfeasible. God allow his words to be destroyed but Satan can preserve the Quran, the Vedas, etc.? No we need to talk more on this...
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: ialmisry on December 23, 2009, 07:27:27 PM
Shalom witega, minasoliman & Salpy, thank you for answering my question. Now I have a better idea on how to answer questions regarding the COE's Christology:

From the moment of Incarnation, there was One Person. Meaning there was one actor (or experiencer in passive situations).

The COE is in agreement with this, they confess that Meshikha is one parsopa. And contrary to what Isa posted earlier from Payne Smith's Syriac Lexicon, Prof. Sebastien Brock has proven with his research that this is not the original meaning of qnoma, which was discussed on this page: http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,20533.45.html.

The lexicon doesn't account for usage over time, nor claims to.  Even if the original meaning was thus, that might explain a past misunderstanding (as the usage of hypostasis in different Greek speaking areas did at Chalcedon), if it were not that all the Orthodox (EO and OO) are agreed that parsopon=hypostasis, and that God has blood now, as Acts 20:28 tells us.


Quote
Also, as I understood it, "separation" would also mean that Christ was just a man who had the Word of God dwelling in him.  I think the Nestorians in the old days compared this to God dwelling in a temple.  This really would make Christ the same as the saints or prophets, who also had God dwelling in them.  It's not the same as God the Word becoming incarnate.

To be fair Messiah did say, concerning His body: "destroy this temple and I will rebuild it in 3 days". Sure God the Miltha, who was invisible became visible by "clothing" Himself in a "human temple" but this is a gross oversimplication of the Incarnation.

Actually, He said "destroy this sanctuary."  Somewhat a difference.

Quote
We also include the words "without confusion or mingling" to show that we don't believe in the other extreme, which Rafa accuses of:  that Christ's divinity and humanity mixed together to form some third nature which was neither fully human or divine.  We don't believe in that either.

I think Rafa is assuming that Monophysitism, which was rife in Alexandria and elsewhere at a time eventually became the official creed of the Copts, but this not the case.

Monophysism was never rife in Alexandria, nor was it ever the official creed of the Coptic Orthodox.

Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: ialmisry on December 23, 2009, 07:39:09 PM
Isa, I like you man. You really are a watchman of the Church keeping an eye out for cunningly devised fables, I really respect that. However you cannot truly believe that only the Greek survived. Are you saying to me that the Muslims can read their Quran in Arabic, the Jews their OT in Hebrew (never mind masoretic corruption later on, they can read it in their script and cultural perspective) but we have to settle for a translaton? Are you saying that the angel of the fiery flame Satan did a better job preserving the Quran than God did preserving HIS scripture? That is totally unfeasible. God allow his words to be destroyed but Satan can preserve the Quran, the Vedas, etc.? No we need to talk more on this...

Actually, I have always believed that because of what you say, Islam, Hinduism etc. and even Judaism are limited, whereas Christianity by its nature is universal, but being bound by a single language.  Even if believed in the primacy of the Peshitta, the OT is still in two other languages, Hebrew and Aramaic.  The Church is spared fundamentalism and literalism by the fact that the Lord's words, with few exceptions, survive only in transaltion.  I believe that is why in part I think the Fathers adopted the LXX, opposed a Hebrew text, besides issues of accuracy.  Btw, I think the Peshitta is somewhat on a par with the Greek Patriarchal Text/textus receptus, as being the expression of the Syriac Orthodox Fathers.

Christ didn't speak Syriac, so the Peshitta doesn't record His very words.  It gives a valuable witness to those words, but how independent is a question.  And then the issue is that St. Paul wrote Greek, as did all the other NT writers except St. Matthew.

It is somewhat like needing the autograph: Muslim belief and Jewish belief requires this, but they cannot have this of their respective scripture.   Where does that leave them?  The Church's textus receptus, in contrast, serves just as well according to her beliefs.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Nazarene on December 23, 2009, 08:16:40 PM
Shalom witega, minasoliman & Salpy, thank you for answering my question. Now I have a better idea on how to answer questions regarding the COE's Christology:

From the moment of Incarnation, there was One Person. Meaning there was one actor (or experiencer in passive situations).

The COE is in agreement with this, they confess that Meshikha is one parsopa. And contrary to what Isa posted earlier from Payne Smith's Syriac Lexicon, Prof. Sebastien Brock has proven with his research that this is not the original meaning of qnoma, which was discussed on this page: http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,20533.45.html.

The lexicon doesn't account for usage over time, nor claims to.
 

The ancient meaning of qnoma hasn't died out, the COE preserves it.

Even if the original meaning was thus,

Not sure if it was the original (it stems from the root qom which means to "rise up/be established"), but it's the meaning that dates to the time of Messiah. Brock proved it.

that might explain a past misunderstanding (as the usage of hypostasis in different Greek speaking areas did at Chalcedon),

It does. Brock demonstrated this.

if it were not that all the Orthodox (EO and OO) are agreed that parsopon=hypostasis,

It does not, parsopa=prosopon, kyana=ousia, and qnoma=untranslatable word. Yes the meaning of qnoma changed (well in the west that is) and Brock's research which included dialoging with all the Aramaic speaking churches showed that it was the Syrian Orthodox Church who changed it and all this change did was make everything even more complicated. The Syrian Orthodox definition of qnoma does not date to the time of Messiah and that's why I reject it. When I study the books of the Bible, I do so from the author's own language (the form of it which existed in his day) terminology, and mindset and not try to force my own language, termonology and mindset on these writings because they are not mine.

and that God has blood now, as Acts 20:28 tells us.

"God" has blood now? Or is "the Lord" or "the Lord and God"? Hmm...

As for Hebrews 2:9, have you read Origen on the matter:

Quote from: Jameisson, Fausset & Brown Commentary
that he by the grace of God — (Tit_2:11; Tit_3:4). The reading of Origen, “That He without God” (laying aside His Divinity; or, for every being save God: or perhaps alluding to His having been temporarily “forsaken,” as the Sin-bearer, by the Father on the cross), is not supported by the manuscripts...

Well except for the COE's Peshitta text, but they obviously weren't aware of this. And:

Quote
Origen, who looked through the manuscripts of the whole Greek Bible in early 3rd century, knew, that in most cases it was written "apart from God" (Hebrew 2;9). At the time of Hieronymus in late 4th /early 5th century the situation was different. Now it read in the majority of the manuscripts: "by God´s grace". ... It is obvious, that the secoundary text reading was introduced for dogmatic reasons ..." - page 207, Jesus, Man or Myth, Carsten P. Thiede, Lion Hudson plc, Mayfield House, 256 Banbury Road, Oxford OX2 7DH England, 2005

This reading, now exclusive to the eastern Peshitta, was also quoted by Ambrose (397 CE), Jerome (420 CE) & Fulgentius (527 CE), so I've been told.

The previous Patriarch of the COE (Mar Eshai Shimon) claimed that the COE has preserved the original Aramaic NT "without change or revision". Quite a claim indeed, so any evidence of "change" or "revision"? My search has come up dry.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: PeterTheAleut on December 23, 2009, 08:27:16 PM
Isa, I like you man. You really are a watchman of the Church keeping an eye out for cunningly devised fables, I really respect that. However you cannot truly believe that only the Greek survived. Are you saying to me that the Muslims can read their Quran in Arabic, the Jews their OT in Hebrew (never mind masoretic corruption later on, they can read it in their script and cultural perspective) but we have to settle for a translaton? Are you saying that the angel of the fiery flame Satan did a better job preserving the Quran than God did preserving HIS scripture? That is totally unfeasible. God allow his words to be destroyed but Satan can preserve the Quran, the Vedas, etc.? No we need to talk more on this...
Actually, God has preserved the word of Scripture... in the Holy Tradition of the Body of His Christ, the Church.  Whereas the Scriptures are indeed of prime authority within the Church, our faith does not rest solely on what's preserved in the written text of the Scriptures.  Hence, we don't need to devote ourselves slavishly to preserving any one translation of the Holy Writ as if our faith would fall apart if we didn't.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Nazarene on December 23, 2009, 08:31:30 PM
Christ didn't speak Syriac, so the Peshitta doesn't record His very words.  It gives a valuable witness to those words, but how independent is a question.  And then the issue is that St. Paul wrote Greek, as did all the other NT writers except St. Matthew.

Syriac and Aramaic are the same language, Syriac is just the Greek name for this language, the Assyrians call their language lishana Aramaya (the Aramaic language). Compare these Bible verses and see for yourself:

{2 Kings 18:26} And Heliakim the son of Chelkias, and Somnas, and Joas, said to Rapsakes, Speak now to thy servants in the Syrian language, for we understand it; and speak not with us in the Judean language: and why dost thou speak in the ears of the people that are on the wall? (LXX)

{2 Kings 18:26} Eliakim son of Hilkiah, Shebna, and Joah replied to the Rabshakeh, "Please, speak to your servants in Aramaic, for we understand it; do not speak to us in Judaic in the hearing of the people on the wall." (Hebrew)

{Daniel 2:4} And the Chaldeans spoke to the king in the Syrian language, saying, O king, live forever: do thou tell the dream to thy servants, and we will declare the interpretation. (LXX)

{Daniel 2:4} The Chaldeans spoke to the king in Aramaic, "O king, live forever! Relate the dream to your servants, and we will tell its meaning." (Hebrew)

{Ezra 4:7} And in the days of Arthasastha, Tabeel wrote peaceably to Mithradates and to the rest of his fellow-servants: the tribute-gatherer wrote to Arthasastha king of the Persians a writing in the Syrian tongue, and the same interpreted. (LXX)

{Ezra 4:7} And in the time of Artaxerxes, Bishlam, Mithredath, Tabeel, and the rest of their colleagues wrote to King Artaxerxes of Persia, a letter written in Aramaic and translated. (Hebrew)

I don’t care how modern linguists classify this ancient language and its dialects when I’m discussing it’s ancient speakers. I will use the understanding contemporary to the time demonstrated by ancient historians such as Herodotus and Strabo:

Quote
The Assyrians went to war with helmets upon their head, made of brass, and plated in strange fashion, which is not easy to describe... These people, whom Greeks call Syrian, are called Assyrian by the barbarians. The Babylonians serve at their rank - Herodotus: The Histories Harmondsworth: Penguin Books, translation by Aubrey de Sélincourt (1972)

Quote
When those who have written histories about the Syrian empire say that the Medes were overthrown by the Persians and the Syrians by the Medes, they mean by the Syrians no other people than those who built the royal palaces in Babylon and Ninus (Nineveh); and of these Syrians, Ninus was the man who founded Ninus, in Aturia (Assyria) and his wife, Semiramis, was the woman who succeeded her husband... Now, the city of Ninus was wiped out immediately after the overthrow of the Syrians. It was much greater than Babylon, and was situated in the plain of Aturia (Assyria). - Strabo, translated by Horace Jones (1917), The Geography of Strabo London : W. Heinemann ; New York : G.P. Putnam's Sons
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: PeterTheAleut on December 23, 2009, 09:18:33 PM
Cyril * epithet removed * who bribed his way out of prison to set up early a robber synod by leaving his church into the equivalent of one million dollars debt (today) ...


...

Regarding the allegations you have made of St. Cyril, you now have 72 hours to back them up with solid evidence from reputable sources or recant them, or they will disappear from your post and you will receive a formal warning for slandering a saint of the EO/OO/RC churches.

- PeterTheAleut
Faith Issues Section Moderator

Rafa999, just a reminder that you have 24 hours yet to substantiate this accusation.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: ialmisry on December 23, 2009, 10:17:34 PM
Shalom witega, minasoliman & Salpy, thank you for answering my question. Now I have a better idea on how to answer questions regarding the COE's Christology:

From the moment of Incarnation, there was One Person. Meaning there was one actor (or experiencer in passive situations).

The COE is in agreement with this, they confess that Meshikha is one parsopa. And contrary to what Isa posted earlier from Payne Smith's Syriac Lexicon, Prof. Sebastien Brock has proven with his research that this is not the original meaning of qnoma, which was discussed on this page: http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,20533.45.html.

The lexicon doesn't account for usage over time, nor claims to.
 

The ancient meaning of qnoma hasn't died out, the COE preserves it.

Even if true, not relevant to the present questions.

On the evidence of the penetration of Greek thought in the Aramaic speaking hinterland:
Evidence of Greek philosophical concepts in the writings of St. Ephraim the Syrian, Volume 580 By Ute Possekel
http://books.google.com/books?id=rZ3gGQuJUS4C&pg=PA74&dq=qnoma&lr=&cd=2#v=onepage&q=qnoma&f=false

There is also the problem that Edessa/Urhoy served as the center of Aramaic/Syriac culture.  It rose to prominence as the capital of the Abgar (Arab Bedouin) Dynasty, in the sphere of the Parthians. The Parthians, however, at the time used Greek in its administration, even their shahs bearing the title "Philhellene."  It was then annexed by the Roman Empire, and then rebuilt by the Emperor Justin.  Greek culture and thought was around, and it shows up in the Syriac.

Quote
Even if the original meaning was thus,

Not sure if it was the original (it stems from the root qom which means to "rise up/be established"), but it's the meaning that dates to the time of Messiah. Brock proved it.

I've only seen him arguing about the meaning predatig the establishment of the correspondence qnoma=hypostasis.  That is still a few centuries short of going back to Christ.  I have to admit, I am not sure of the first appearance of Aramaic/Syriac philosophical texts, but I don't think it predates the 3rd century, the 2nd at the earliest.  Still too late.

Quote
that might explain a past misunderstanding (as the usage of hypostasis in different Greek speaking areas did at Chalcedon),

It does. Brock demonstrated this.

if it were not that all the Orthodox (EO and OO) are agreed that parsopon=hypostasis,

It does not, parsopa=prosopon,


technically parsopa<prosopon (which raises the issue of Greek influence).

Quote
kyana=ousia, and qnoma=untranslatable word.

There is no such thing as an "untranslatable word."  

Quote
Yes the meaning of qnoma changed (well in the west that is) and Brock's research which included dialoging with all the Aramaic speaking churches showed that it was the Syrian Orthodox Church who changed it and all this change did was make everything even more complicated.

Complicated how?

Quote
The Syrian Orthodox definition of qnoma does not date to the time of Messiah and that's why I reject it.

The term as far as I know doesn't date to the days of Christ, as Syriac as a language barely does (the earliest form of Syriac is a 6 AD inscription).

Quote
When I study the books of the Bible, I do so from the author's own language (the form of it which existed in his day) terminology, and mindset and not try to force my own language, termonology and mindset on these writings because they are not mine.

Then again, you are going to have problems with Christ's words, as He didn't speak Syriac, so the Peshitta isn't going to help you there.

Quote
and that God has blood now, as Acts 20:28 tells us.

"God" has blood now?

For about two thousand years now.

Quote
Or is "the Lord" or "the Lord and God"? Hmm...

In the verse in question, "God."

Quote
As for Hebrews 2:9,


who brought up Hebrews 2:9?

Quote
have you read Origen on the matter:

Quote from: Jameisson, Fausset & Brown Commentary
that he by the grace of God — (Tit_2:11; Tit_3:4). The reading of Origen, “That He without God” (laying aside His Divinity; or, for every being save God: or perhaps alluding to His having been temporarily “forsaken,” as the Sin-bearer, by the Father on the cross), is not supported by the manuscripts...

Well except for the COE's Peshitta text, but they obviously weren't aware of this. And:

Quote
Origen, who looked through the manuscripts of the whole Greek Bible in early 3rd century, knew, that in most cases it was written "apart from God" (Hebrew 2;9). At the time of Hieronymus in late 4th /early 5th century the situation was different. Now it read in the majority of the manuscripts: "by God´s grace". ... It is obvious, that the secoundary text reading was introduced for dogmatic reasons ..." - page 207, Jesus, Man or Myth, Carsten P. Thiede, Lion Hudson plc, Mayfield House, 256 Banbury Road, Oxford OX2 7DH England, 2005

This reading, now exclusive to the eastern Peshitta, was also quoted by Ambrose (397 CE), Jerome (420 CE) & Fulgentius (527 CE), so I've been told.

I'd have to know specifics, and specifically why this was brought up.

Quote
The previous Patriarch of the COE (Mar Eshai Shimon) claimed that the COE has preserved the original Aramaic NT "without change or revision".


Well if the Peshitta was the Aramaic original, someone changed or revised it, because it is in Syriac now.

Quote
Quite a claim indeed, so any evidence of "change" or "revision"? My search has come up dry.

Start with the use of the Greek word "euaggelion" for "Gospel" in the Peshitta, along with the Greek terms "bishop" etc.


Then there are all those early (2nd and perhaps 1st century) Greek texts from the NT.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: ialmisry on December 23, 2009, 10:28:00 PM
Christ didn't speak Syriac, so the Peshitta doesn't record His very words.  It gives a valuable witness to those words, but how independent is a question.  And then the issue is that St. Paul wrote Greek, as did all the other NT writers except St. Matthew.

Syriac and Aramaic are the same language, Syriac is just the Greek name for this language,

I read Syriac and Aramaic, and no, they are not the same language. Btw, Suraya etc. is a borrowing into Syriac from Greek.

Quote
the Assyrians call their language lishana Aramaya (the Aramaic language). Compare these Bible verses and see for yourself:

{2 Kings 18:26} And Heliakim the son of Chelkias, and Somnas, and Joas, said to Rapsakes, Speak now to thy servants in the Syrian language, for we understand it; and speak not with us in the Judean language: and why dost thou speak in the ears of the people that are on the wall? (LXX)

{2 Kings 18:26} Eliakim son of Hilkiah, Shebna, and Joah replied to the Rabshakeh, "Please, speak to your servants in Aramaic, for we understand it; do not speak to us in Judaic in the hearing of the people on the wall." (Hebrew)

{Daniel 2:4} And the Chaldeans spoke to the king in the Syrian language, saying, O king, live forever: do thou tell the dream to thy servants, and we will declare the interpretation. (LXX)

{Daniel 2:4} The Chaldeans spoke to the king in Aramaic, "O king, live forever! Relate the dream to your servants, and we will tell its meaning." (Hebrew)

{Ezra 4:7} And in the days of Arthasastha, Tabeel wrote peaceably to Mithradates and to the rest of his fellow-servants: the tribute-gatherer wrote to Arthasastha king of the Persians a writing in the Syrian tongue, and the same interpreted. (LXX)

{Ezra 4:7} And in the time of Artaxerxes, Bishlam, Mithredath, Tabeel, and the rest of their colleagues wrote to King Artaxerxes of Persia, a letter written in Aramaic and translated. (Hebrew)

I don’t care how modern linguists classify this ancient language and its dialects when I’m discussing it’s ancient speakers. I will use the understanding contemporary to the time demonstrated by ancient historians such as Herodotus and Strabo:

Quote
The Assyrians went to war with helmets upon their head, made of brass, and plated in strange fashion, which is not easy to describe... These people, whom Greeks call Syrian, are called Assyrian by the barbarians. The Babylonians serve at their rank - Herodotus: The Histories Harmondsworth: Penguin Books, translation by Aubrey de Sélincourt (1972)

Quote
When those who have written histories about the Syrian empire say that the Medes were overthrown by the Persians and the Syrians by the Medes, they mean by the Syrians no other people than those who built the royal palaces in Babylon and Ninus (Nineveh); and of these Syrians, Ninus was the man who founded Ninus, in Aturia (Assyria) and his wife, Semiramis, was the woman who succeeded her husband... Now, the city of Ninus was wiped out immediately after the overthrow of the Syrians. It was much greater than Babylon, and was situated in the plain of Aturia (Assyria). - Strabo, translated by Horace Jones (1917), The Geography of Strabo London : W. Heinemann ; New York : G.P. Putnam's Sons


You speak as if something written in the 2nd millenium BC means the same as the 2nd century AD.  To find out that it doesn't try reading something in Old English, just a millenium and a half difference.  Syriac, and Aramaic, are different from Hebrew, which the Greeks (and I can provide the quotes if necessary) subsume under the one term "Hebrew."
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Rafa999 on December 23, 2009, 10:51:19 PM
Just to answer any questions regarding how posters should refer to the saints of other traditions in the course of their discussions, I found this post at the top of the public Oriental Orthodox Discussion board.  Granted, Faith Issues is a different board with a different area of focus, but I think we can draw from the precedent set here many of the principles Fr. Anastasios would probably like to see apply to Faith Issues, as well.

http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,3758.0.html

having fled to Egypt, Cyril bribed Theodosius' courtiers, and sent a mob lead by Dalmatius, a hermit, to besiege Theodosius' palace, and shout abuse; the Emperor eventually gave in, sending Nestorius into minor exile (Upper Egypt)


Formal Academic Source: Edward Gibbon, Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire, 47

I also have as a witness Isa saying that Cyril "Did nothing Athanasius didn't do". Therefore I will not recant. Note that I have absolutely nothing against St.Athanasius, but I do have issues with Cyril being termed a Saint. Oh and by the way, there is no dispute that he led mobs to murder Hypatia-by slowly flaying her. This is not a Saint...
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: PeterTheAleut on December 23, 2009, 11:52:08 PM
Just to answer any questions regarding how posters should refer to the saints of other traditions in the course of their discussions, I found this post at the top of the public Oriental Orthodox Discussion board.  Granted, Faith Issues is a different board with a different area of focus, but I think we can draw from the precedent set here many of the principles Fr. Anastasios would probably like to see apply to Faith Issues, as well.

http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,3758.0.html

having fled to Egypt, Cyril bribed Theodosius' courtiers, and sent a mob lead by Dalmatius, a hermit, to besiege Theodosius' palace, and shout abuse; the Emperor eventually gave in, sending Nestorius into minor exile (Upper Egypt)


Formal Academic Source: Edward Gibbon, Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire, 47
What connection is there between this piece of evidence and the accusation I asked you to substantiate?  I didn't ask for evidence to support a general charge that St. Cyril was a depraved rogue, or to support the specific charge that he somehow persuaded the emperor to send Nestorius into exile (which I'm not convinced was even a bad thing).  I asked you to substantiate your specific claim that St. Cyril "bribed his way out of prison to set up early a robber synod by leaving his church into the equivalent of one million dollars debt".  What can you provide to substantiate THAT?  You still have until 3 p.m. tomorrow (Pacific Standard Time) to give us this evidence.

I also have as a witness Isa saying that Cyril "Did nothing Athanasius didn't do".
Not disparaging ialmisry's credibility here, but for the purpose of fulfilling my request, he doesn't count as a reputable source.  Can you cite a single work he's written apart from this forum to serve a specifically scholarly goal?

Therefore I will not recant. Note that I have absolutely nothing against St.Athanasius, but I do have issues with Cyril being termed a Saint. Oh and by the way, there is no dispute that he led mobs to murder Hypatia-by slowly flaying her. This is not a Saint...
Yes, I've heard this story about St. Cyril's complicity in the murder of Hypatia, but I've also seen enough information to cast into serious doubt your belief that "there is no dispute" that he led mobs to carry out this dastardly deed.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Salpy on December 23, 2009, 11:53:32 PM
Oh and by the way, there is no dispute that he led mobs to murder Hypatia-by slowly flaying her. This is not a Saint...

Hypatia's death was gruesome and tragic, but there is no contemporary source to support your claim that the mob which killed her was led by St. Cyril.  Mob violence was unfortunately very common in Alexandria at that time, and although she was killed by a mob of Christians, the sources from that time say the mob was led by a guy named Peter.  St. Cyril was not there, and there is no source from the time to support the claim that he instigated the violence.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Rafa999 on December 24, 2009, 12:01:07 AM
Pete, I provided Conclusive Evidence Cyril bribed his way into influence and embezzled. If you want to give me a warning for telling you the truth ("Have I Become your Enemy for telling you the truth...") then its ok, fine. This is supposed to be a forum no?
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: PeterTheAleut on December 24, 2009, 12:06:40 AM
Pete, I provided Conclusive Evidence Cyril bribed his way into influence and embezzled. If you want to give me a warning for telling you the truth ("Have I Become your Enemy for telling you the truth...") then its ok, fine. This is supposed to be a forum no?
1.  Don't call me "Pete."  I HATE seeing that name attached to me. :P Please address me as either PeterTheAleut or PtA.
2.  Where is the evidence you provided that is so conclusive that "Cyril bribed his way into influence and embezzled"?  I have not yet seen it.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: ialmisry on December 24, 2009, 12:17:10 AM
Pete, I provided Conclusive Evidence Cyril bribed his way into influence and embezzled. If you want to give me a warning for telling you the truth ("Have I Become your Enemy for telling you the truth...") then its ok, fine. This is supposed to be a forum no?
can you provide something more up to date than Gibbon, himself questionable.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Rafa999 on December 24, 2009, 12:20:13 AM
You want proof? The 96th letter of the corpus of his writings details every single bribe he sent to Constantinople.

Go here to read how he got his church in debt by embezzling:

http://books.google.ca/books?id=7-NktOwEjYMC&pg=PR6&lpg=PR6&dq=letters+of+Cyril+of+Alexandria+96+gifts&source=bl&ots=JKbl75E3Rq&sig=wov--iziBT5SIyWA5KAmxr1K0cM&hl=en&ei=AO0yS_zlDpG2lAe8o8ybBw&sa=X&oi=book_result&ct=result&resnum=4&ved=0CA8Q6AEwAw#v=onepage&q=&f=false


"letter" number 96.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: PeterTheAleut on December 24, 2009, 12:34:55 AM
You want proof? The 96th letter of the corpus of his writings details every single bribe he sent to Constantinople.

Thank you.  That's the kind of evidence I was looking for to support (not necessarily prove) your accusations.

Now, regarding the substance of the introductory explanation added by the translator of these letters, John I. McEnerney: I can think of many reasons why one may question his credibility or the credibility of his writings, so I don't necessarily see his translation of St. Cyril's letters as incontrovertible proof of any allegations against the saint.  However, the only thing I could request as a moderator was evidence to, at the minimum, support the idea that your accusation was at least the opinion of a few reputable scholars and not just something you invented to slander the saint's memory.

Now if someone else, just for the sake of debate, wants to hold you to a higher standard of proof, then that's totally up to them, and you have no formal obligation to comply with their request.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Nazarene on December 25, 2009, 07:07:40 PM
My question would start with the theological COE definition of kyanah, qnoma, and parsopa.

In this post I’ll give all the info I can find on these 3 Aramaic words, (all colour coding mine):

First, let’s go back to that diagram:

(http://dukhrana.com/images/kyana_qnoma_parsopa.gif)

Here’s Mar Babai the Great’s explanation from his Book of Union:

Quote
“A singular essence is called a ‘qnoma’. It stands alone, one in number, that is, one as distinct from the many. A qnoma is invariable in its natural state and is bound to a species and nature, being one [numerically] among a number of like qnome. It is distinctive among its fellow qnome [only] by reason of any unique property or characteristic which it possesses in its ‘parsopa’. With rational creatures this [uniqueness] may consist of various [external and internal] accidents, such as excellent or evil character, or knowledge or ignorance, and with irrational creatures [as also with the rational] the combination of various contrasting features. [Through the parsopa we distinguish that] Gabriel is not Michael, and Paul is not Peter. However, in each qnoma of any given nature the entire common nature is known, and intellectually one recognizes what that nature, which encompasses all its qnome, consists of. A qnoma does not encompass the nature as a whole [but exemplifies what is common to the nature, such as, in a human qnoma, body, soul, mind, etc.].”—Fourth Memra, Book of the Union, Published by Corpus Scriptorum Christianorum Orientalium, Paris, 1915, A. Vaschalde, ed.

Mar Babai’s definition of qnoma, again from the Fourth Memra:

Quote
(a) A particular nature which has been individuated but not independently personalized
(b) As a specific exemplar of that which is common to a general classification or species – that which moves from an abstract generalization to a concrete example;
(c) As a set of natural properties (as opposed to distinguishing accidents) as they exist in an individual.

Here is a summary of the COE’s Christology from the Synodicon Oriental:

Quote
Concerning this, we believe in our hearts and confess with our lips one Lord Jesus Christ, the Son of God, whose Godhead does not disappear, and whose manhood is not stolen away, but who is complete God and complete man. When we say of Christ ‘complete God’ we are not naming the Trinity, but one of the qnome of the Trinity, God the Word. Again, when we call Christ ‘complete man’ it is not all men we are naming, but the one qnoma which was specifically taken for our salvation into union with the Word.

More? From Ruach Qadim: the Path to Life by Andrew Gabriel Roth, pg 138-139:

Quote
…Kyanna does not refer to an actual thing but rather to an abstraction of that thing; a theoretical construct. You can talk about “human nature” but have you found its actuality? Kyanna simply asks the question, “Can something be divine, human or animal?” as opposed to, “I have found THIS, and it is human.”

…“For every kyanna of beasts and birds, of reptiles and creatures of the sea, is tamed and has been tamed by the human kyanna.” (James 3:7)

The nature of something is never seen, and it only exists as a classification searching for an occurrence it has not found yet. John the bird collector, trudging off into the forest to document as many species as possible has already worked out in his mind certain criteria of “birdness” that he will look for. What he is looking for will have feathery wings as opposed to the leather-like appearance of a bat’s, it will have a sharp beak and not a mammalian style mouth, and so on. That criteria or classification scheme is the essence of kyanna…

With me so far? Let’s continue:

Quote
…Now let us say that a few minutes after John arrives in the forest, something flies overhead, but it is moving too quickly for him to identify it. All John knows is that some kind of bird, a living example of the classification (kyanna) he held in his mind just went by him. In that case John has just found an individuated instance of that abstract concept – he has found a qnoma, that his kyanna was looking for.

Pause again and think about what is happening here, now let’s continue on:

Quote
More time passes, and John wants to make sure he does not make the same mistake twice. He double checks his equipment and makes every effort to ensure that his camera is ready to snap a photograph the instant another bird crosses his path. Then, finally, one does, and this time he is elated because he has captured the image of a rare type of sparrow that he has been looking to add to his species list for years. The bird has all the unique features known only to its kind, along with some odd coloring that would even distinguish him from amongst other members of his species. At that level of detail then, we have found the parsopa of that particular bird.

Shamash Paul Younan sums it up like this:

Quote
"Self" would be a horrible definition for Qnoma. "Self" is nearly synonymous with "Person", yet two Qnome from the same Kyana (nature) do not have the necessary amount of differentiating information to be considered two distinct "persons."

Kyana (nature) is abstract. Qnoma is an instantiation, a concrete example, of a Kyana......yet it does not contain enough information to become a different "Person" from a fellow Qnoma of the same Kyana.

The only thing which differentiates one Qnoma from another in the same Kyana is number - by that I mean that each one is distinct, yet not distinct enough to be considered two different "persons."

Here’s a simple illustration on the differences between kyana, qnoma & parsopa:

A day is a 24 hour period – this is kyana
A week is a group of 7 24 hour periods (day 1, day 2, ect.) – this is qnoma
Each day has a name (Monday, Tuesday, etc.) to distinguish it from the other days in the same group (week) – this is parsopa

Perhaps it’ll be easier to understand what a qnoma is, if we first look at what it does. Again I quote Paul Younan:

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Orthodox Christianity (all Orthodox Christianity) believes that the subject of the Incarnation was both "God and Man"....not a "God-man." Pagans believed in "god-men." There is a BIG difference between the two.

The way Aramaic-speaking believers understand this revelation (God and Man) is through the concept of "God-Qnoma and Human-Qnoma", and this fits in perfectly with revelation in scripture.

If Meshikha didn't have a Divine Qnoma, then he was a liar. If Meshikha didn't have a Human Qnoma, then the sacrifice is useless and I reject it.

You HAVE to understand that when you even suggest that Meshikha didn't have a divine Qnoma, you are saying that he wasn't God. And if you even suggest that Meshikha didn't have a human Qnoma, then you are saying that he wasn't born of a woman!

In the Aramaic psyche - you cannot be human, and not have a human Qnoma. You cannot be God, and not have a divine Qnoma. In other words, in the Aramaic psyche you cannot go directly from abstract nature to concrete person. That abstract nature must be *individuated* first. That's where Qnoma comes in.

If you tell an Aramaic-speaking person that a bird flying above does not have a "bird qnoma", that person would look at you like you were insane - because what you are saying, essentially, is that you think the bird is imaginary! That you think that bird doesn't exist!

Qnoma functions as an “ingredient”, or “chemical reaction” or “process” which is needed to transform something abstract into something concrete, but on a conceptual level not a physical level, again from Paul Younan:

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Yes, indeed. The word for "resurrection" in Aramaic is "Qeyamtha", which is also derived from the root "Qom."

The reason why Prof. Brock and others have concluded that the CoE definition for Qnoma is the archaic one, is because of the imagery involved with the primitive root meaning "to rise up, stand up, to be established."

"Kyana" means "nature" in an abstract sense, and "Qnoma" means an "individuated kyana", i.e., "something which has arisen, stood up, and become established from an abstract concept."

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Think of it this way:

Human Kyana~Abstract Nature: Blueprint - must have 46 chromosomes. Must have a gender of male or female. Must have two eyes, two arms, two legs, etc. The blueprint for everything a human is supposed to be. Abstract, not real.

Human Qnoma~Concrete, Real, Individuated Kyana: This is an individuated (real, concrete) Kyana. There exists billions of them that are identical. All are equal, except in number (i.e., Qnoma number 1 is not Qnoma number 2). They cannot be distinguished except by instance (number).

Human Parsopa~Person: Peter, Paul, Mary. Each one is a different person. Because the Kyana states that a human must have 46 chromosomes, all three people have 46 chromosomes - but each one has different combinations of genes which makes them unique.

Because the Kyana states that a human must have two eyes - Peter, Paul and Mary each have two eyes. However, Paul's eyes are brown while Peter's eyes are green and Mary's eyes are blue. Each one has personal characteristics that make each person unique.

Think of qnoma as a “photocopy” of human nature, like you would make a photocopy of a document – all the copies are identical because it’s the same document, the only thing that distinguishes them is number, again from Paul Younan:

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All human Qnome are co-equal (nothing to distinguish them, except for number~name.) This is why the fall of Adam was the fall of all of mankind. We are all collectively called "Adam." Our nature became corrupt, therefore each of our copies of that nature (qnome) are corrupt. Meshikha took a qnoma from Maryam and redeemed our nature by His sacrifice of that human temple.

In like manner, all the Qnome of God are co-equal, one and the same Kyana - one single God. We do not call them by the English word "persons", nor by its Aramaic cognate "parsope".

As human qnome are collectively called "Adam" or "Anasha", these three Divine qnome are collectively called the "Godhead". We make no distinction between them, except for number~name.

As you and I are called "ben-Adam" or "bar-Anasha", Meshikha's humanity is called "bar-Alaha"....the "Son of God." But His Divinity is God Himself.

Paul Younan on parsopa:

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No. There is no such thing as a Divine Person. We do not speak of God as a "person", because a "person" means that you are physical.

We speak of the subject of the Incarnation, Meshikha, as a "person" because he had both a human nature(abstract)-qnoma(concrete) as well as a Divine nature(abstract)-qnoma(concrete) in one "person" and was born of a woman - he materialized here on earth among us and became a person like us.

But that does not mean that God is a "person" - God is three Qnome and not a "Person."

In the person of Meshikha, one Divine Qnoma (out f three) was joined together with one human qnoma (out of billions) to form a single "person", who was the subject of the Incarnation and the object of our worship.

The Father never became a Parsopa, neither did the Holy Spirit. These two Qnome remained distinct from the Qnoma of the Son which took for itself a body from us as a temple (Yukhanan 1:1), and thus became a "person."
When we speak of the Godhead, we speak of spiritual things and not physical things.

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God is God, we are persons. In Aramaic, the word "person" is attributed to a human nature. Human beings are persons. (We don't speak of individual dogs, cats or pet goldfish in a bowl as "persons", either.)

I'm not sure what you mean by "impersonal"? "Impersonal" as an adjective could describe an entity that isn't alive, does not feel emotions, is unknowable, lacks the ability to communicate or lacks "personality." Kind of like a dead or inanimate object, like a rock.

God lives, God is and God is knowable. God loves. God creates. God heals. God speaks. God saves.

We can certainly observe things within God's Nature, certain aspects of His Being that are familiar to our human experience. Certainly, we are created in His Image, so we might expect that we have certain things in our individual person that reflect certain aspects of our Creator. Is that what you mean by "personal?"

I do not think of God as a "person" or "three persons", but if I were forced to assign a label in English I would utilize a word like Being - that is the essence of the name YHWH in Hebrew.

+Shamasha

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Actually, I wanted to add Akha: there is no native Aramaic term that means what the Greek/English "person" means. The Aramaic vocabulary, indeed the Semitic psyche as a whole, lacks the very concept.

The word we use today, "Parsopa", is a loan-word from Greek ("Proposon"). Reason it's a loan word, is that usually when cultures come into contact and there is a concept in one that is absent from the other, borrowing typically occurs (back and forth.)

Really when anyone in the Semitic milieu, Jews, Christians and Muslims, hear the Western formulation of "One God in Three Persons", we become rather confused. Of course both Jewish and Muslim apologists, indeed even fringe groups like the JW's, accuse "Christianity" of being something other than Monotheistic.

While I don't agree with them, of course, one can see how the confusion arises since the terminology is almost contradictory to say the least.

That's really unfortunate, because if one studies the topic carefully the reality is that the Greek "Prosopon" was nearly unavoidable given that no cognate for "Qnuma", the concept, exists in Indo-European languages.

How these understandings of kyana, qnoma & parsopa affect COE Christology:

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The Incarnation does NOT mean that God changed into anything. God remained God, and simply took the form of a servant by taking a temple of humanity from Mary. His Divinity dwelled within the humanity with which He clothed Himself.

It is this humanity that was tempted in the wilderness, that urinated, that defecated, that ate food, that drank water, that bled on the Cross and that lay dead in the tomb for three days and three nights. God was not involved in any of those things. God is impassible, eternal and in need of none of those things.

…Finally, you ask about atonement. If Meshikha wasn't fully human just as you are fully human, the sacrificial act was worthless and you still remain in your sin. If Meshikha's humanity was "divine" (according to you), then it is not your humanity that was sacrificed, but some freak Frankenstein creature. And therefore you are still lost.

And finally:

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No one is saying that Meshikha isn't God. He is. And no one is saying that Meshikha isn't man. He is.
The Divinity did not die on the Cross. The Divinity is impassible. The manhood, which He took from us, bled and died and suffered and was tempted. But not the Divinity.

Do you really understand the Divinity to have suffered and have died? If "God" died, then who raised Him?
Yes, of course Meshikha is called MarYah. He is MarYah. But he is also bnai' nasha (Son of Man) The Hymn above in this thread explains my position perfectly. I'm not adding to it or taking anything away from it, the scriptures it references make it perfectly clear that God did not die and Man did not raise the dead and forgive sins.

Once again, the person of Meshikha is God/Man ..... not God-man. Neither the Divinity was from His mother, nor the humanity from His Father. Each was preserved perfectly in its own Qnuma, in the One Person of Meshikha. Qnuma is an Aramaic word I though you were familiar with, at least conceptually.

It is not possible for Satan to tempt God in the wilderness. What kind of temptation was that, a mockery? A set up? Doomed to fail from the get-go? That is utter blasphemy. It is the humanity of Meshikha that was tempted. What was Satan offering God in the wilderness that He did not already own? What are you thinking? Was Satan really asking God to bow down and worship him? What kind of triumph of will was that? A mockery you have turned the temptation into, that's what. If God, and not our Humanity, triumphed over temptation then it means nothing. Big deal. Woo-hoo. God wasn't interested in all the kingdoms, riches and debauchery that Satan had to offer. Woo-hoo. Great triumph.

Likewise, it is not possible that God bleeds or urinates or defecates or dies or lays in a grave. That is paganism.

Comments?
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Nazarene on December 26, 2009, 01:43:44 PM
In this post I’ll compare the Orthodox doctrine of the Hypostatic Union with the Christology of the COE:

Quote from: Wikipedia
Hypostatic union (from the Greek: ὑπόστασις, {"[h]upostasis"}, "hypostasis", sediment, foundation or substance) is a technical term in Christian theology employed in mainstream Christology to describe the presence of both human and divine natures in Jesus Christ. The Gospel of John 10:37-38 quotes Jesus as follows: "...that you may know and understand that the Father is in me, and I in the Father."

The Hypostatic union became official at the Council of Ephesus, which stated that the two natures (divine and human) are united in the one person (existence or reality, "hypostasis") of Christ.[1]

In the COE it works like this:

“the two natures (divine and human) are united in the one person (existence or reality, “hypostasis”) of Christ, through the preservation of their qnome (divine and human).

Quote from: Wikipedia
Hypostasis had come into use as a technical term prior to the Christological debates of the late fourth and fifth centuries. Before there were Christians, the word was used in Greek philosophy, primarily in Stoicism.[2][3] Hypostasis had some use in the New Testament that reflect the later, technical understanding of the word; especially Hebrews 1:3.[4]

Let’s compare the Byzantine Greek reading of Hebrews 1:3 with the Peshitta reading:

who is the brightness of His glory and the image of His being (hypostasis), sustaining all things by the expression of His power. He Himself has cleansed our sins, [and] sat down at the right hand of Majesty on high. (Byzantine)

who is the radiance of His glory, and the image of His being (aithutha), and almighty by the manifestation of His power. And in His Qnoma He accomplished the cleansing of our sins, and sat down at the right hand of Majesty in the highest place. (Peshitta)

Observations:

*it is the Aramaic word aithutha (substance/essence/being/existence), not qnoma, that is equivalent to the Greek hypostasis

*His Qnoma is obviously referring to Messiah’s Divine Qnoma – the Miltha/God the Son. But this is not necessarily in conflict with the Greek “Himself” by suggesting separatism within the person Yeshua Meshikha. Rather it’s more specific, meaning that the “camera lens” is “zooming in” on the specific mechanism/channel within Meshikha’s parsopa through which He accomplished our salvation. The reason for this, I believe, is to identify “His Qnoma” as the exact same mechanism/channel within YHWH Elohim that is responsible for salvation – His Arm (Isaiah 53).

Quote from: Wikipedia
Although it can be rendered literally as "substance" this has been a cause of some confusion[5] so it is now often translated "subsistence". It denotes an actual, concrete existence, in contrast with abstract categories such as Platonic ideals.

Qnoma is very similar to hypostasis in that it’s an instantation, and therefore an actual existence of a kyana (abstract). The difference is that qnoma doesn’t allow for the same degree of “distinctiveness”, you cannot tell 2 qnome apart, they are identical, “clones” of a nature if you will. Also qnoma never enters the material realm on its own, it can only do so through a parsopa, which the COE associates with the material realm exclusively.

Quote from: Wikipedia
The First Council of Nicaea declared that the Father and the Son are of the same substance and are co-eternal. This belief was expressed in the Nicene Creed.

The COE, who accepts the Nicene Creed, believe that the Father and the Son are of the same substance (spirit) and the same nature (divine), and that they are co-eternal because they are Qnome – individuated instantations of divinity. As “clones” of divinity, they are not separate deities (individuals) but together with the Holy Spirit, are living existences, which perfectly embody all the characteristics of divinity (omniscience, omnipresences, omnibenevolence, omniportence & eternity) eternally united within the Spirit who is YHWH Elohim, functioning as “built in” mechanisms/channels through which YHWH Elohim carries out work and communicates with creation.

Interesting bit from Wikipedia’s article on Miaphysitism:

Quote from: Wikipedia
Much has been said about the difficulties in understanding the Greek technical terms used in these controversies. The main words are ousia (οὐσία, 'substance'), physis (φύσις, 'nature'), hypostasis (ὑπόστασις) and prosopon (πρόσωπον, 'person'). Even in Greek, their meanings can overlap somewhat. These difficulties became even more exaggerated when these technical terms were translated into other languages. In Syriac, physis was translated as kyānâ (ܟܝܢܐ) and hypostasis as qnômâ (ܩܢܘܡܐ). However, in the Persian Church, or the East Syriac tradition, qnoma was taken to mean nature, thereby confounding the issue furthermore. The shades of meaning are even more blurred between these words, and they could not be used in such a philosophical way as their Greek counterparts.

Brock has pointed out the Syrian Orthodox Church has also at times (after the Christological controversies) associated kyana with hypostasis, and qnoma with prosopon.  But the COE’s Christology is based on the archaic meanings of these words.  Therefore kyana should be translated as ousia, physis is OK but doesn’t capture as much of the imagery of kyana as ousia does. And qnoma, which means “individuated concrete instance of a kyana” not nature, should be explained not translated.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Nazarene on December 26, 2009, 04:28:27 PM
BUMP

Just noticed an an error in my previous post:

In this post I’ll compare the Orthodox doctrine of the Hypostatic Union with the Christology of the COE:

Quote from: Wikipedia
Hypostatic union (from the Greek: ὑπόστασις, {"[h]upostasis"}, "hypostasis", sediment, foundation or substance) is a technical term in Christian theology employed in mainstream Christology to describe the presence of both human and divine natures in Jesus Christ. The Gospel of John 10:37-38 quotes Jesus as follows: "...that you may know and understand that the Father is in me, and I in the Father."

The Hypostatic union became official at the Council of Ephesus, which stated that the two natures (divine and human) are united in the one person (existence or reality, "hypostasis") of Christ.[1]

In the COE it works like this:

“the two natures (divine and human) are united in the one person (existence or reality, “hypostasis”) of Christ, through the preservation of their qnome (divine and human).

What I meant to say is this:

In the COE it works like this:

“the two natures (divine and human) are united in the one person (existence or reality, “hypostasis”) of Christ, through the preservation of their qnome (divine and human).

Sorry.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: ialmisry on December 30, 2009, 02:20:45 PM
My question would start with the theological COE definition of kyanah, qnoma, and parsopa.

In this post I’ll give all the info I can find on these 3 Aramaic words,

parsopa isn't Aramaic: its Greek (πρόσωπον)


[/quote] (all colour coding mine):

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First, let’s go back to that diagram:

(http://dukhrana.com/images/kyana_qnoma_parsopa.gif)

Here’s Mar Babai the Great’s explanation from his Book of Union:

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“A singular essence is called a ‘qnoma’. It stands alone, one in number, that is, one as distinct from the many. A qnoma is invariable in its natural state and is bound to a species and nature, being one [numerically] among a number of like qnome. It is distinctive among its fellow qnome [only] by reason of any unique property or characteristic which it possesses in its ‘parsopa’. With rational creatures this [uniqueness] may consist of various [external and internal] accidents, such as excellent or evil character, or knowledge or ignorance, and with irrational creatures [as also with the rational] the combination of various contrasting features. [Through the parsopa we distinguish that] Gabriel is not Michael, and Paul is not Peter. However, in each qnoma of any given nature the entire common nature is known, and intellectually one recognizes what that nature, which encompasses all its qnome, consists of. A qnoma does not encompass the nature as a whole [but exemplifies what is common to the nature, such as, in a human qnoma, body, soul, mind, etc.].”—Fourth Memra, Book of the Union, Published by Corpus Scriptorum Christianorum Orientalium, Paris, 1915, A. Vaschalde, ed.

Then the qnome of the Holy Trinity should each have their parsopa.

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Mar Babai’s definition of qnoma, again from the Fourth Memra:

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(a) A particular nature which has been individuated but not independently personalized
(b) As a specific exemplar of that which is common to a general classification or species – that which moves from an abstract generalization to a concrete example;
(c) As a set of natural properties (as opposed to distinguishing accidents) as they exist in an individual.

Such is workable for a hyspostatic union of Christ.

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Here is a summary of the COE’s Christology from the Synodicon Oriental:

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Concerning this, we believe in our hearts and confess with our lips one Lord Jesus Christ, the Son of God, whose Godhead does not disappear, and whose manhood is not stolen away, but who is complete God and complete man. When we say of Christ ‘complete God’ we are not naming the Trinity, but one of the qnome of the Trinity, God the Word. Again, when we call Christ ‘complete man’ it is not all men we are naming, but the one qnoma which was specifically taken for our salvation into union with the Word.

This would be Orthodox (the only issue might come in the issue of the question of a human hypostasis in Christ, an issue we have on the "Jesus Christ the God-Man, A Divine Person, Also a Human Person?" private thread.  A question here would be that the Human and Divine qnome in Christ are united such that remain united in one qnoma, as the body, soul and spirit of a man are one qnoma, even when the soul/spirit is parted from the body (and hence why it will be reunited at the Resurrection).

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More? From Ruach Qadim: the Path to Life by Andrew Gabriel Roth, pg 138-139:

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…Kyanna does not refer to an actual thing but rather to an abstraction of that thing; a theoretical construct. You can talk about “human nature” but have you found its actuality? Kyanna simply asks the question, “Can something be divine, human or animal?” as opposed to, “I have found THIS, and it is human.”

The question is, when you have found Christ, have you found divine and human nature.

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…“For every kyanna of beasts and birds, of reptiles and creatures of the sea, is tamed and has been tamed by the human kyanna.” (James 3:7)

The problem is if you use Biblical quotes for kyana, you multiply problems (e.g. Galations 2:15 would have the Jews of a different essence than the rest of us :o).

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The nature of something is never seen, and it only exists as a classification searching for an occurrence it has not found yet. John the bird collector, trudging off into the forest to document as many species as possible has already worked out in his mind certain criteria of “birdness” that he will look for. What he is looking for will have feathery wings as opposed to the leather-like appearance of a bat’s, it will have a sharp beak and not a mammalian style mouth, and so on. That criteria or classification scheme is the essence of kyanna…

With me so far?


More or less.

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Let’s continue:

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…Now let us say that a few minutes after John arrives in the forest, something flies overhead, but it is moving too quickly for him to identify it. All John knows is that some kind of bird, a living example of the classification (kyanna) he held in his mind just went by him. In that case John has just found an individuated instance of that abstract concept – he has found a qnoma, that his kyanna was looking for.

Pause again and think about what is happening here, now let’s continue on:

How does he know, since it was a blurr, not a bat, or a dragon fly?

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More time passes, and John wants to make sure he does not make the same mistake twice. He double checks his equipment and makes every effort to ensure that his camera is ready to snap a photograph the instant another bird crosses his path. Then, finally, one does, and this time he is elated because he has captured the image of a rare type of sparrow that he has been looking to add to his species list for years. The bird has all the unique features known only to its kind, along with some odd coloring that would even distinguish him from amongst other members of his species. At that level of detail then, we have found the parsopa of that particular bird.

What if it is just the female of a species of which the male is already known (such mistakes have happened in taxonomy)?  I'm also not sure how this makes a rigid distinction between qnoma and parsopa that a parsopic, rather than a hypostatic/qnomic, union would require in Christ. At least in a way to keep it Orthodox.

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Shamash Paul Younan sums it up like this:

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"Self" would be a horrible definition for Qnoma. "Self" is nearly synonymous with "Person", yet two Qnome from the same Kyana (nature) do not have the necessary amount of differentiating information to be considered two distinct "persons."

qnoma is a usual word for "self" in Syriac, and "person."

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Kyana (nature) is abstract. Qnoma is an instantiation, a concrete example, of a Kyana......yet it does not contain enough information to become a different "Person" from a fellow Qnoma of the same Kyana.


Why not?

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The only thing which differentiates one Qnoma from another in the same Kyana is number - by that I mean that each one is distinct, yet not distinct enough to be considered two different "persons."

This is adding another layer: is it warranted?

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Here’s a simple illustration on the differences between kyana, qnoma & parsopa:

A day is a 24 hour period – this is kyana
A week is a group of 7 24 hour periods (day 1, day 2, ect.) – this is qnoma
Each day has a name (Monday, Tuesday, etc.) to distinguish it from the other days in the same group (week) – this is parsopa

This is like saying the Father, Son and Spirit are kyana, and the Trinity qnoma.

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Perhaps it’ll be easier to understand what a qnoma is, if we first look at what it does. Again I quote Paul Younan:

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Orthodox Christianity (all Orthodox Christianity) believes that the subject of the Incarnation was both "God and Man"....not a "God-man." Pagans believed in "god-men." There is a BIG difference between the two.


Actually, the Hypostaic Union describes a God-man, which has nothing to do with the god-men of the pagans, who were mixture.

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The way Aramaic-speaking believers

The Syriac Orthodox are also Aramaic-speaking believers: in fact, they, with those in submission to the Vatican, have the only Aramaic (versus Syriac) speaking believers.  They all believe in the Hypostatic Union.

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understand this revelation (God and Man) is through the concept of "God-Qnoma and Human-Qnoma", and this fits in perfectly with revelation in scripture.


So it does.  But then, it also reveals Christ as a qnoma.

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If Meshikha didn't have a Divine Qnoma, then he was a liar. If Meshikha didn't have a Human Qnoma, then the sacrifice is useless and I reject it.


I prefer the wording "beign a Divine qnoma" etc.

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You HAVE to understand that when you even suggest that Meshikha didn't have a divine Qnoma, you are saying that he wasn't God. And if you even suggest that Meshikha didn't have a human Qnoma, then you are saying that he wasn't born of a woman!

In the Aramaic psyche - you cannot be human, and not have a human Qnoma. You cannot be God, and not have a divine Qnoma. In other words, in the Aramaic psyche you cannot go directly from abstract nature to concrete person. That abstract nature must be *individuated* first. That's where Qnoma comes in.


Well, having borrowed the concepts from the Greek psyche (a Greek word, btw), I'm not sure of the point, since it doesn't differ from the Greek terminology on which it is based.

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If you tell an Aramaic-speaking person that a bird flying above does not have a "bird qnoma", that person would look at you like you were insane - because what you are saying, essentially, is that you think the bird is imaginary! That you think that bird doesn't exist!

Qnoma functions as an “ingredient”, or “chemical reaction” or “process” which is needed to transform something abstract into something concrete, but on a conceptual level not a physical level, again from Paul Younan:

Being an existentialist, I see the abstract only existing in the particulars, rather than the particulars being derived from an abstract.  But I don't know if that is a sine qua non of Orthodoxy.

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Yes, indeed. The word for "resurrection" in Aramaic is "Qeyamtha", which is also derived from the root "Qom."

The reason why Prof. Brock and others have concluded that the CoE definition for Qnoma is the archaic one, is because of the imagery involved with the primitive root meaning "to rise up, stand up, to be established."

"Kyana" means "nature" in an abstract sense, and "Qnoma" means an "individuated kyana", i.e., "something which has arisen, stood up, and become established from an abstract concept."

The use of qnoma for person, self is used in the Peshitta.  Again, I would question if the kyana is not abstracted from qnome.

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Think of it this way:

Human Kyana~Abstract Nature: Blueprint - must have 46 chromosomes. Must have a gender of male or female. Must have two eyes, two arms, two legs, etc. The blueprint for everything a human is supposed to be. Abstract, not real.

Human Qnoma~Concrete, Real, Individuated Kyana: This is an individuated (real, concrete) Kyana. There exists billions of them that are identical. All are equal, except in number (i.e., Qnoma number 1 is not Qnoma number 2). They cannot be distinguished except by instance (number).

Human Parsopa~Person: Peter, Paul, Mary. Each one is a different person. Because the Kyana states that a human must have 46 chromosomes, all three people have 46 chromosomes - but each one has different combinations of genes which makes them unique.

Because the Kyana states that a human must have two eyes - Peter, Paul and Mary each have two eyes. However, Paul's eyes are brown while Peter's eyes are green and Mary's eyes are blue. Each one has personal characteristics that make each person unique.

Again, each person is a concrete, real, individuated Kyana.

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Think of qnoma as a “photocopy” of human nature, like you would make a photocopy of a document – all the copies are identical because it’s the same document, the only thing that distinguishes them is number, again from Paul Younan:

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All human Qnome are co-equal (nothing to distinguish them, except for number~name.) This is why the fall of Adam was the fall of all of mankind. We are all collectively called "Adam." Our nature became corrupt, therefore each of our copies of that nature (qnome) are corrupt. Meshikha took a qnoma from Maryam and redeemed our nature by His sacrifice of that human temple.


This would get into the issue of Christ having an individual human hypostasis.

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In like manner, all the Qnome of God are co-equal, one and the same Kyana - one single God. We do not call them by the English word "persons", nor by its Aramaic cognate "parsope".


The word parsopon is a Biblical one:
http://thriceholy.net/prosopon.html

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As human qnome are collectively called "Adam" or "Anasha", these three Divine qnome are collectively called the "Godhead". We make no distinction between them, except for number~name.


One is source, one is begotten, one processes.

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As you and I are called "ben-Adam" or "bar-Anasha", Meshikha's humanity is called "bar-Alaha"....the "Son of God." But His Divinity is God Himself.

I hope that is a typo: Bar Alaha is His Divinity.

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Paul Younan on parsopa:

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No. There is no such thing as a Divine Person. We do not speak of God as a "person", because a "person" means that you are physical.

No, it doesn't.

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We speak of the subject of the Incarnation, Meshikha, as a "person" because he had both a human nature(abstract)-qnoma(concrete) as well as a Divine nature(abstract)-qnoma(concrete) in one "person" and was born of a woman - he materialized here on earth among us and became a person like us.

But that does not mean that God is a "person" - God is three Qnome and not a "Person."

It would seem then, that all of us on the private thread about Christ's human hypostasis would be of one opinion versus the opinion just expressed, as all of us confess that Christ has eternally been a person.

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In the person of Meshikha, one Divine Qnoma (out f three) was joined together with one human qnoma (out of billions) to form a single "person", who was the subject of the Incarnation and the object of our worship.

Only if that person was in Hypostatic Union.

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The Father never became a Parsopa, neither did the Holy Spirit. These two Qnome remained distinct from the Qnoma of the Son which took for itself a body from us as a temple (Yukhanan 1:1), and thus became a "person."

The Father and Spirit are both Persons, as is the Son, Who became a "sanctuary" as opposed to "temple."

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When we speak of the Godhead, we speak of spiritual things and not physical things.

When we speak of the Incarnation, we do. And when we speak of Godhead, we speak of the Three Persons in One Godhead.

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God is God, we are persons. In Aramaic, the word "person" is attributed to a human nature. Human beings are persons. (We don't speak of individual dogs, cats or pet goldfish in a bowl as "persons", either.)

Actually, Syriac does use parSopa to speak of the Persons of the Trinity, and, for instance the "parSopa of the earth."

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I'm not sure what you mean by "impersonal"? "Impersonal" as an adjective could describe an entity that isn't alive, does not feel emotions, is unknowable, lacks the ability to communicate or lacks "personality." Kind of like a dead or inanimate object, like a rock.

Impersonal as in the deist image of God.  A force, not a Person.

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God lives, God is and God is knowable. God loves. God creates. God heals. God speaks. God saves.

Actually, God is not knowable unless He reveals Himself.

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We can certainly observe things within God's Nature, certain aspects of His Being that are familiar to our human experience.

The former would be His Essence, which we cannot observe, the latter His Energies, through which we know Him.

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Certainly, we are created in His Image, so we might expect that we have certain things in our individual person that reflect certain aspects of our Creator. Is that what you mean by "personal?"

I do not think of God as a "person" or "three persons", but if I were forced to assign a label in English I would utilize a word like Being - that is the essence of the name YHWH in Hebrew.

The One revealed in the Burning Bush is the same revealed in the Womb of the Virgin.  But through her we have seen God, not like Moses, who couldn't behold His glory.



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Actually, I wanted to add Akha: there is no native Aramaic term that means what the Greek/English "person" means. The Aramaic vocabulary, indeed the Semitic psyche as a whole, lacks the very concept.

The word we use today, "Parsopa", is a loan-word from Greek ("Proposon"). Reason it's a loan word, is that usually when cultures come into contact and there is a concept in one that is absent from the other, borrowing typically occurs (back and forth.)

Really when anyone in the Semitic milieu, Jews, Christians and Muslims, hear the Western formulation of "One God in Three Persons", we become rather confused. Of course both Jewish and Muslim apologists, indeed even fringe groups like the JW's, accuse "Christianity" of being something other than Monotheistic.

There are terms for "Person," e.g. "My/your/his/her soul."

And the "One God in Three Persons" is the formulation of the Ecumenical Councils, all of which were held in the East.

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While I don't agree with them, of course, one can see how the confusion arises since the terminology is almost contradictory to say the least.

That's really unfortunate, because if one studies the topic carefully the reality is that the Greek "Prosopon" was nearly unavoidable given that no cognate for "Qnuma", the concept, exists in Indo-European languages.

Hypostasis.

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How these understandings of kyana, qnoma & parsopa affect COE Christology:

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The Incarnation does NOT mean that God changed into anything. God remained God, and simply took the form of a servant by taking a temple of humanity from Mary. His Divinity dwelled within the humanity with which He clothed Himself.

As one is clothed in his own skin.

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It is this humanity that was tempted in the wilderness, that urinated, that defecated, that ate food, that drank water, that bled on the Cross and that lay dead in the tomb for three days and three nights. God was not involved in any of those things. God is impassible, eternal and in need of none of those things.

Since the Incarnation, God is involved in all those things.

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…Finally, you ask about atonement. If Meshikha wasn't fully human just as you are fully human, the sacrificial act was worthless and you still remain in your sin. If Meshikha's humanity was "divine" (according to you), then it is not your humanity that was sacrificed, but some freak Frankenstein creature. And therefore you are still lost.

Saying His humanity was divine would be mixing the natures.

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And finally:

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No one is saying that Meshikha isn't God. He is. And no one is saying that Meshikha isn't man. He is.
The Divinity did not die on the Cross. The Divinity is impassible. The manhood, which He took from us, bled and died and suffered and was tempted. But not the Divinity.

Do you really understand the Divinity to have suffered and have died? If "God" died, then who raised Him?
Yes, of course Meshikha is called MarYah. He is MarYah. But he is also bnai' nasha (Son of Man) The Hymn above in this thread explains my position perfectly. I'm not adding to it or taking anything away from it, the scriptures it references make it perfectly clear that God did not die and Man did not raise the dead and forgive sins.

Once again, the person of Meshikha is God/Man ..... not God-man. Neither the Divinity was from His mother, nor the humanity from His Father. Each was preserved perfectly in its own Qnuma, in the One Person of Meshikha. Qnuma is an Aramaic word I though you were familiar with, at least conceptually.

It is not possible for Satan to tempt God in the wilderness. What kind of temptation was that, a mockery? A set up? Doomed to fail from the get-go? That is utter blasphemy. It is the humanity of Meshikha that was tempted. What was Satan offering God in the wilderness that He did not already own? What are you thinking? Was Satan really asking God to bow down and worship him? What kind of triumph of will was that? A mockery you have turned the temptation into, that's what. If God, and not our Humanity, triumphed over temptation then it means nothing. Big deal. Woo-hoo. God wasn't interested in all the kingdoms, riches and debauchery that Satan had to offer. Woo-hoo. Great triumph.

Likewise, it is not possible that God bleeds or urinates or defecates or dies or lays in a grave. That is paganism.

The confines of the Tomb contained Him Whom the Heavens eternally could not contain.

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Comments?


See above.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: minasoliman on December 30, 2009, 03:12:25 PM
I was skimming through this writing by Theodore of Mopsuestia (I should read the whole thing though, which I'll do when I have the time) and I just wanted to give an example of what we as Orthodox find quite objectionable even in the language of Christology:

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Our Fathers rightly thought not to overlook the humanity of our Lord which possesses such an ineffable union with Divine nature, but added: And in one Lord Jesus Christ, as if they had said, 'We believe in one Lord who is of Divine nature, to which the name of Lord and God is truly due.' In speaking of God the Word they said: By whom are all things, as the evangelist said: "All things were made by Him, and nothing was made without Him." It is as if they had said, ' This one we understand to be one Lord who is of the Divine nature of God the Father, who for our salvation put on a man in whom He dwelt and through whom He appeared and became known to mankind. It is this man who was said by the angel that he would be called Jesus, who was anointed with the Holy Ghost in whom He was perfected and justified, as the blessed Paul testifies.' After saying these and showing the Divine nature and the human nature which God put on, they added: The "Only Begotten Son," the "first-born" of all creatures. With these two words they alluded to the two natures, and by the difference between the words they made us understand the difference between the natures. From the fact also that they referred both words to the one person of the Son they showed us the close union between the two natures. They did not make use of these words out of their own head but they took them from the teaching of Holy Writ. The blessed Paul said: "Of whom Christ in the flesh, who is God over all," not that He is God by nature from the fact that He is of the House of David in the flesh, but he said "in the flesh" in order to indicate the human nature that was assumed. He said "God over all" in order to indicate the Divine nature which is higher than all, and which is the Lord. He used both words of one person in order to teach the close union of the two natures, and in order to make manifest the majesty and the honour that came to the man who was assumed by God who put Him on.

When you differentiate the natures of Christ to the point you give the human nature a separate pronoun, that to me is troublesome language, two personist if you will, even though Theodore of Mopsuestia says he believes in one person, but continues to say the man was called Jesus, and God the Word assumed Him, not "it" but Him.  Neither is it acknowledged that God the Word IS Jesus, but rather assumed Jesus.

To be honest, the definition Nazerene gives to hypostasis is fine by me, because if anything Severus of Antioch was close to that definition.  But I would say that Severus of Antioch would condemn the way one would talk about Christ as Theodore of Mopsuestia did (let alone the two natures part, which is a separate discussion).  So there's more to it than just different definitions of terms in my opinion.

Dear Nazarene,

Severus of Antioch has defined hypostasis as the concrete individuation of nature.  Therefore, if anything, your "qnome" is the Syriac "hypostasis."  Essence(ousia) was an "abstraction" and nature (physis) can either be defined as ousia or hypostasis.  But prosopon was not merely what differentiates hypostases, but that which contains a "self."  A hypostasis being the concrete of an abstract would already be differentiated from other concrete things, and there's no need to add something to differentiate it from others.

For example, "rockness" is ousia.  You can't see "rockness" but you can definitely see a rock or a pebble, each being a hypostasis.  These are the Syriac definitions according to Severus of Antioch.  Prosopon is that which contains self, not that which differentiates.  Just because I can name a rock, doesn't mean it has prosopon.  If the definition of prosopon is just differentiating with names, then it's understandable that the Assyrian Church believes in multiple persons within Christ.  If "parsopa" is in the name, then Theodore of Mopsuestia shows quite sufficiently that he believe in two names acting together in Christ, the Word of God and the son of man.  (Byzantine Christology defines hypostasis as prosopon (as self) while the concretion of ousia is physis).

There's another problem to the definitions you provide for us.  Prosopon to you is considered one that differentiates with names.  You provided the example of the days of the week.  Now, let me apply the strategy of same analogy with the Trinity:

God is uncreated (ousia)
The Trinity is three in One God (hypostases)
Father, Son, and Holy Spirit in the Trinity (persons).

So while you deny any prosopon in the Trinity, yet the Trinity still has prosopa using that analogy of yours.  Is this a self-contradiction?

God bless.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Rafa999 on December 30, 2009, 07:04:20 PM
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Mar Babai’s definition of qnoma, again from the Fourth Memra:

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(a) A particular nature which has been individuated but not independently personalized
(b) As a specific exemplar of that which is common to a general classification or species – that which moves from an abstract generalization to a concrete example;
(c) As a set of natural properties (as opposed to distinguishing accidents) as they exist in an individual.

Such is workable for a hyspostatic union of Christ.

Then let's leave it at that Isa. Mar Babai's Christology is that of the Assyrian Church of the East. Everything else is mere exposition.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Nazarene on December 30, 2009, 07:25:08 PM
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Mar Babai’s definition of qnoma, again from the Fourth Memra:

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(a) A particular nature which has been individuated but not independently personalized
(b) As a specific exemplar of that which is common to a general classification or species – that which moves from an abstract generalization to a concrete example;
(c) As a set of natural properties (as opposed to distinguishing accidents) as they exist in an individual.

Such is workable for a hyspostatic union of Christ.

Then let's leave it at that Isa. Mar Babai's Christology is that of the Assyrian Church of the East. Everything else is mere exposition.

Shalom Isa, minasoliman & Rafa,

I was just thinking something while reading your responses. Since the concept of qnoma is exclusive to the Aramaic language perhaps we should just ignore it. There's no English cognate, the concept doesn't exist in English, so it's not needed to explain Christology in English, and we are speaking English right now aren't we?

I don't mind discussing qnoma further, but how about (just for now) we leave the qnoma element out of the picture? What do you think?

Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Nazarene on December 30, 2009, 07:48:59 PM
From the Catholic Encyclopaedia:

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Hypostatic Union

A theological term used with reference to the Incarnation to express the revealed truth that in Christ one person subsists in two natures, the Divine and the human. Hypostasis means, literally, that which lies beneath as basis or foundation. Hence it came to be used by the Greek philosophers to denote reality as distinguished from appearances (Aristotle, "Mund.", IV, 21). It occurs also in St. Paul's Epistles (2 Corinthians 9:4; 11:17; Hebrews 1:3-3:14), but not in the sense of person. Previous to the Council of Nicæa (325) hypostasis was synonymous with ousia, and even St. Augustine (On the Holy Trinity V.8) avers that he sees no difference between them. The distinction in fact was brought about gradually in the course of the controversies to which the Christological heresies gave rise, and was definitively established by the Council of Chalcedon (451), which declared that in Christ the two natures, each retaining its own properties, are united in one subsistence and one person (eis en prosopon kai mian hpostasin) (Denzinger, ed. Bannwart, 148). They are not joined in a moral or accidental union (Nestorius), nor commingled (Eutyches), and nevertheless they are substantially united. For further explanation and bibliography see: INCARNATION; JESUS CHRIST; MONOPHYSITISM; NATURE; PERSON.

Can someone give me a full explanation of the Hypostatic Union, as well as the ancient pre-Nicene meanings of the Greek words ousia, physis, hypostasis & prosopon?
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Deacon Lance on December 30, 2009, 08:43:27 PM
(Byzantine Christology defines hypostasis as prosopon (as self) while the concretion of ousia is physis).

Disclaimer: I do not consider either Assyrians or Oriental Orthodox heretics.

The Byzantine fathers rejected the term prosopon because they considered it a weak term just as they rejected the term miaphysis.  Prosopon was considered unsuitable because it did not imply the unity of the person stongly enough to them.  Prosopon carried the meaning of personality and was used also of the masks that actors wore.  Miaphysis was rejected because they considered it did not distinguish between the natures strongly enough and could be interpreted as Christ being 50% human 50% divine.

Fr. Deacon Lance
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Rafa999 on December 30, 2009, 09:08:52 PM
Deacon Lance, an important thing you must know is that because the Assyrian Church of the East was in the Persian empire by itself, the meanings of the words and theological expressions changed quickly  (ie: person has a very different connotation today than at Nicea, it took 80 years for the COE to approve Nicea), by the time the Assyrian Church formulated its positions and sent them out to show that they were orthodox, their positions were frequently not understood...which is tragic.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Salpy on December 30, 2009, 09:19:45 PM
The Byzantine fathers rejected the term prosopon

Are you sure of that?  Please correct me if I am wrong, but didn't the Tome of Leo use that term?
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Deacon Lance on December 30, 2009, 09:58:59 PM
St Leo wrote the Tome in Latin and used the term personam, which I believe the Greeks translated as prosopon (not sure how consistent this was done) but again rejected this term to describe the union.  They described the union as hypostatic not prosoponic.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Deacon Lance on December 30, 2009, 10:01:52 PM
Deacon Lance, an important thing you must know is that because the Assyrian Church of the East was in the Persian empire by itself, the meanings of the words and theological expressions changed quickly  (ie: person has a very different connotation today than at Nicea, it took 80 years for the COE to approve Nicea), by the time the Assyrian Church formulated its positions and sent them out to show that they were orthodox, their positions were frequently not understood...which is tragic.

Yes, I understand which is why I do not consider Assyrians heretics, nor does my Church.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: ialmisry on December 31, 2009, 01:18:18 AM
Deacon Lance, an important thing you must know is that because the Assyrian Church of the East was in the Persian empire by itself, the meanings of the words and theological expressions changed quickly  (ie: person has a very different connotation today than at Nicea, it took 80 years for the COE to approve Nicea), by the time the Assyrian Church formulated its positions and sent them out to show that they were orthodox, their positions were frequently not understood...which is tragic.

Yes, I understand which is why I do not consider Assyrians heretics, nor does my Church.

So the Vatican doesn't think Christ God has blood nor a mother?
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: ialmisry on December 31, 2009, 01:24:12 AM
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Mar Babai’s definition of qnoma, again from the Fourth Memra:

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(a) A particular nature which has been individuated but not independently personalized
(b) As a specific exemplar of that which is common to a general classification or species – that which moves from an abstract generalization to a concrete example;
(c) As a set of natural properties (as opposed to distinguishing accidents) as they exist in an individual.

Such is workable for a hyspostatic union of Christ.

Then let's leave it at that Isa. Mar Babai's Christology is that of the Assyrian Church of the East. Everything else is mere exposition.

Shalom Isa, minasoliman & Rafa,

I was just thinking something while reading your responses. Since the concept of qnoma is exclusive to the Aramaic language perhaps we should just ignore it. There's no English cognate, the concept doesn't exist in English, so it's not needed to explain Christology in English, and we are speaking English right now aren't we?

I don't mind discussing qnoma further, but how about (just for now) we leave the qnoma element out of the picture? What do you think?



What the Greeks call hypostasis, the Syriacs call qnoma, and we (Arabs) call 'uqnuum e.g.
The Concept of al-uqnum in Ammar al-Basri's Apology for the Doctrine of the Trinity
http://cat.inist.fr/?aModele=afficheN&cpsidt=12421483

We can use English "subsistence" or "person," but it doesn't eliminate the problem, as the terms are not untranslatable.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Rafa999 on December 31, 2009, 01:30:32 AM
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So the Vatican doesn't think Christ God has blood nor a mother?

Where did I say Christ does not have a Mother? Also note your statement "Christ God has blood"- is it Christ which has blood or the invisible spirit the divine father which has blood? Because there is a separation there, he is not a 50% man 50% invisible spirit fusion being with blood. "Your will be done" as he said in Gethsemane. Before you say that I denied God has blood, no, only I think the blood of all beings on the Earth belongs to God (why he asked us not to eat it because it is holy) and the Christ offered his blood as a holy Qurbana.

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The Archbishop of Constantinople — Nestorius, having asserted that Mary ought not to be referred to as the "Mother of God" (Theotokos in Greek, literally "God-bearer"),[1] was denounced as a heretic; in combating this assertion of Patriarch Nestorius, Eutyches declared that Christ was "a fusion of human and divine elements",[1] causing his own denunciation as a heretic twenty years after the First Council of Ephesus at the 451 AD Council of Chalcedon.

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After his death his doctrines obtained the support of the Empress Eudocia and made considerable progress in Syria. In the sixth century, they received a new impulse from a monk of the name of Jacob Baradaeus, who united the various divisions into which the Eutychians, or Monophysites, had separated into one church, which exists today under the name of the Syriac Orthodox Church. There are also many adherents of the similar miaphysite doctrine in Armenia, Egypt and Ethiopia (also in the Oriental Orthodox communion), who are often erroneously called "Monophysites" even though they do not, and never have, followed Eutyches.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Eutyches

...and I am a "heretic" ?
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: ialmisry on December 31, 2009, 01:52:04 AM
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So the Vatican doesn't think Christ God has blood nor a mother?

Where did I say Christ does not have a Mother? Also note your statement "Christ God has blood"- is it Christ which has blood or the invisible spirit the divine father which has blood? Because there is a separation there, he is not a 50% man 50% invisible spirit fusion being with blood. "Your will be done" as he said in Gethsemane. Before you say that I denied God has blood, no, only I think the blood of all beings on the Earth belongs to God (why he asked us not to eat it because it is holy) and the Christ offered his blood as a holy Qurbana.

God purchased the Church with His Blood. Acts 20:28.

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The Archbishop of Constantinople — Nestorius, having asserted that Mary ought not to be referred to as the "Mother of God" (Theotokos in Greek, literally "God-bearer"),[1] was denounced as a heretic; in combating this assertion of Patriarch Nestorius, Eutyches declared that Christ was "a fusion of human and divine elements",[1] causing his own denunciation as a heretic twenty years after the First Council of Ephesus at the 451 AD Council of Chalcedon.

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After his death his doctrines obtained the support of the Empress Eudocia and made considerable progress in Syria. In the sixth century, they received a new impulse from a monk of the name of Jacob Baradaeus, who united the various divisions into which the Eutychians, or Monophysites, had separated into one church, which exists today under the name of the Syriac Orthodox Church. There are also many adherents of the similar miaphysite doctrine in Armenia, Egypt and Ethiopia (also in the Oriental Orthodox communion), who are often erroneously called "Monophysites" even though they do not, and never have, followed Eutyches.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Eutyches

...and I am a "heretic" ?
[/quote]

Will you confess Mary Ever Virgin as "yaldath 'alaha"
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Rafa999 on December 31, 2009, 01:54:42 AM
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God purchased the Church with His Blood. Acts 20:28.

Doctored Jacobite reading. The Messiah did. I confess the Mother of Christ. Alaha has no mother, he is eternal and unbegotten.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Salpy on December 31, 2009, 02:11:57 AM
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So the Vatican doesn't think Christ God has blood nor a mother?

Where did I say Christ does not have a Mother? Also note your statement "Christ God has blood"- is it Christ which has blood or the invisible spirit the divine father which has blood? Because there is a separation there, he is not a 50% man 50% invisible spirit fusion being with blood. "Your will be done" as he said in Gethsemane. Before you say that I denied God has blood, no, only I think the blood of all beings on the Earth belongs to God (why he asked us not to eat it because it is holy) and the Christ offered his blood as a holy Qurbana.


This is the sort of thing that tells me there really is a difference--however subtle--between the Christology of my Church and that of the Church of the East.  All the discussion over words, like qnoma, doesn't mean much to me.  However, the fact that my Church can say God Incarnate has a mother and blood, and the fact that the COE is not comfortable with that, tells me there is a real difference in our beliefs regarding how divinity and humanity were united in the Incarnation. 
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: PeterTheAleut on December 31, 2009, 02:18:00 AM
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God purchased the Church with His Blood. Acts 20:28.

Doctored Jacobite reading.
Devoid of a cogent argument, you discredit the very Scriptures that instruct our arguments.  Can you prove that the Scripture ialmisry cited was doctored?  I've not seen you do this yet, at least not well enough to convince me.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Rafa999 on December 31, 2009, 02:19:57 AM
The Eastern Syriac Khabouris manuscript I cited  contains "Messiah" instead of God. It's Syriac is older than that of the Orthodox Syriac Church, it is the Eastern script and vowel pointers.

Also...somebody here please tell me if God would have the possibility of succumbing to temptation to satan like this interpretation of Miaphysitism suggests. Are you saying that when satan tempted the Messiah he was tempting God in a pathetic attempt which would assuredly fail? That can't be a true God, now if you were saying he was tempting the human nature of the Messiah that's different.

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Your Will, Not Mine! - Mark 14:36

Are you suggesting a schizophrenic Messiah talking to himself? I see here the Son of God appealing to the Divine nature in him somehow separate much like your arm can receive directions from your brain but it can't instruct your brain what to do, doesn't mean you are two people. This is material for infinite homilies and I don't pretend I fully understand it, but its what scripture teaches. Also, how can that Son not know the time of his coming (but the father does?) It's because there's a certain separation, much like the branches of a tree are separate but not different trees.

Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: minasoliman on December 31, 2009, 03:26:31 AM
Dear Rafa999,

St. Jacob Baradeus was not a Eutychian, but condemned Eutyches.  He wasn't really a "uniter" but more of a "preserver" who with the spirit of St. Paul's bravery preserved the Oriental Orthodox churches and of the ancient Alexandrian tradition of Christology.

Also Acts 20:28 is not a "Jacobite doctoring."  I believe we can go as far back (and I'm sure farther) as St. John Chrysostom, who studied under the guidance of Diodore of Tarsus and with Theodore of Mopsuestia (who taught Nestorius):

Quote from: St. John Chrysostom's Homily XLIV on the Acts (http://www.ccel.org/ccel/schaff/npnf111.vi.xliv.html)
So, whereas he seems to be justifying himself, in fact he is terrifying them. “Take heed therefore unto yourselves, and to all the flock, over the which the Holy Ghost hath made you overseers (or, bishops) to feed the Church of God, which He hath purchased with His own blood.  Do you mark? he enjoins them two things. Neither success in bringing others right of itself is any gain—for, I fear, he says, “lest by any means, when I have preached to others, I myself should be a cast-away” (1 Cor. ix. 27); nor the being diligent for one’s self alone. For such an one is selfish, and seeks his own good only, and is like to him who buried his talent. “Take heed to yourselves:” this he says, not because our own salvation is more precious than that of the flock, but because, when we take heed to ourselves, then the flock also is a gainer. “In which the Holy Ghost hath made you overseers, to feed the Church of God.” See, it is from the Spirit ye have your ordination. This is one constraint: then he says, “To feed the Church of the Lord.”  Lo! another obligation: the Church is the Lord’s.  And a third: “which He hath purchased with His own blood.” It shows how precious the concern is; that the peril is about no small matters, seeing that even His own blood He spared not.”

Perhaps, your Eastern Syriac Khabouris is a Nestorian doctoring?

God bless.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Rafa999 on December 31, 2009, 03:44:04 AM
Chrysostom studied with the presumed "heretic" Theodore of Mopsuestia, who is titled "the interpreter" in the COE. Perhaps you can all respect the great St.John Chrysostom and confess to be wrong and that his master was right, and that St.Chrysostom's canon even agrees with that of the COE (he never used the last five books of the Western canon...just like the COE).
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Papist on December 31, 2009, 03:50:37 AM
The Eastern Syriac Khabouris manuscript I cited  contains "Messiah" instead of God. It's Syriac is older than that of the Orthodox Syriac Church, it is the Eastern script and vowel pointers.

Also...somebody here please tell me if God would have the possibility of succumbing to temptation to satan like this interpretation of Miaphysitism suggests. Are you saying that when satan tempted the Messiah he was tempting God in a pathetic attempt which would assuredly fail? That can't be a true God, now if you were saying he was tempting the human nature of the Messiah that's different.

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Your Will, Not Mine! - Mark 14:36

Are you suggesting a schizophrenic Messiah talking to himself? I see here the Son of God appealing to the Divine nature in him somehow separate much like your arm can receive directions from your brain but it can't instruct your brain what to do, doesn't mean you are two people. This is material for infinite homilies and I don't pretend I fully understand it, but its what scripture teaches. Also, how can that Son not know the time of his coming (but the father does?) It's because there's a certain separation, much like the branches of a tree are separate but not different trees.


Can a person appeal to a nature?
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: minasoliman on December 31, 2009, 03:55:31 AM
Chrysostom studied with the presumed "heretic" Theodore of Mopsuestia, who is titled "the interpreter" in the COE. Perhaps you can all respect the great St.John Chrysostom and confess to be wrong and that his master was right, and that St.Chrysostom's canon even agrees with that of the COE (he never used the last five books of the Western canon...just like the COE).

He also hasn't interpreted Luke and Mark.  Do you honestly believe that if he hasn't wrote any homilies on any book that he didn't accept it?

Where's your proof?

Also, you haven't addressed how Acts 20:28 was a Jacobite forgery when it fact St. John Chrysostom also quoted that God had blood.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Rafa999 on December 31, 2009, 03:57:58 AM
I'll trust the theologian who taught one of your greatest Saints on this matter of the correct reading and on who is right thankyou  ;)

Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: minasoliman on December 31, 2009, 04:27:59 AM
I'll trust the theologian who taught one of your greatest Saints on this matter of the correct reading and on who is right thankyou  ;)



So you think Diodore of Tarsus also believed the verse also alluded to the blood of God?
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: PeterTheAleut on December 31, 2009, 06:12:34 AM
I'll trust the theologian who taught one of your greatest Saints on this matter of the correct reading and on who is right thankyou  ;)
It's nice that you trust the guy.  But what about us?  Why should we trust him?
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Orthodox11 on December 31, 2009, 09:41:53 AM
Also note your statement "Christ God has blood"- is it Christ which has blood or the invisible spirit the divine father which has blood?

You seem to be suggesting that the divinity of Christ is God the Father. Are you a Sabellian too?

The invisible God assumed a complete humanity, blood included. God the Son is a Person. His humanity belongs to His divine Person. Therefore God has blood, and offers it to us in the divine Eucharist.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Nazarene on December 31, 2009, 10:18:13 AM
What the Greeks call hypostasis, the Syriacs call qnoma, and we (Arabs) call 'uqnuum e.g.
The Concept of al-uqnum in Ammar al-Basri's Apology for the Doctrine of the Trinity
http://cat.inist.fr/?aModele=afficheN&cpsidt=12421483

I'm going to quote Brock again:

Quote
"First of all (and this goes without saying), we need to try to understand what writers actually meant by the technical terms they use, rather than rely on what their opponents claimed they meant.....in this context, both the Syriac (Aramaic) terminology, and the understanding of that terminology, in the Church of the East can be described as both archaic and conservative."

"I conclude by looking at two sets of specific example....both are cases where the language used by the Church of the East could best be described as archaic.....we are dealing with imagery which was once widespread and which is still preserved in the Church of the East after it had been for the most part dropped by everyone else in the course of the fifth century controversies."

"It is essentially this (the archaic) understanding of kyana that is retained in the Church of the East.....by contrast, later fifth- and sixth-century Syrian Orthodox writers understand kyana as virtually a synonym with hypostasis.....significantly, in Syriac Orthodox translations of the later fifth and of the sixth century, the older rendering...is replaced by various other translations, thus removing the (now archaic) association of kyana with ousia."

"At the outset I would suggest that....it is important to retain the Syriac term (Qnoma), and not retrovert it into hypostasis (let alone translate it as "person", as has occasionally been done)."

"In many cases...the tradition of the Church of the East will be found to have preserved images and metaphors of the incarnation which were once widely current, but which writers in other Syriac traditions had subsequently dropped, either on grounds of their perceived inadequacy, or because they were thought to lend support to the position of their theological opponents."

"The 4th century texts seem to understand kyana very much with ousia....This meaning was kept unchanged in the East. In the 6th and 7th centuries however the Syrian Orthodox moved with the times and their understanding came close to the Western/Greek development of hypostasis/prosopon. This gave rise to most of the problems."

"The Church of the East in the Sasanian Persian Empire up to the Sixth Century and it's absence from the Councils in the Roman Empire", by Prof. Sebastian Brock, Oxford University, June 25th, 1994, Vienna Austria - presented at the First Syriac Dialogue, hosted by Pro Oriente. ISBN: 3-901188-05-3

Brock advises that we don't "retrovert qnoma into hypostasis" and I'm going to follow his advice. Qnoma does NOT mean hypostasis which Brock, the world's leading authority on the Aramaic language stresses very clearly. Qnoma is very similar to hypostasis but it's not an exact match. Mar Babai the Great said the qnoma means: "A particular nature which has been individuated but not independently personalized". Qnoma means "individuation" it NEVER means "individual", I know that it sounds like the same thing in English but it's not.

We can use English "subsistence" or "person," but it doesn't eliminate the problem, as the terms are not untranslatable.

We can use English "subsistance" or "person" for hypostasis NOT for qnoma. And BTW the Greek word hypostasis has changed in meaning over the centuries as well, before the Christological contraversies began hypostasis wasn't closely interwind with prosopon.

That's why I want to go back to the time before the first Council of Nicaea - to what these Greek words use to mean because the COE's understanding of the Aramaic words in their terminology (which is older than the other Aramaic churches) seems to correspond a lot more closely with the older meanings of the Greek words, but I need to make sure.

So if anyone can answer the question, I posted earlier I would appreciate it:

Can someone please give me a full explanation of the Hypostatic Union, as well as the older (pre-Nicene) meanings of the Greek words ousia, physis, hypostasis & prosopon?

Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: ozgeorge on December 31, 2009, 11:05:57 AM
Likewise, it is not possible that God bleeds or urinates or defecates or dies or lays in a grave. That is paganism.
Comments?

Docetism.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Tzimis on December 31, 2009, 11:27:04 AM
Ah, The mystery of prosopon. Only known to the greatest of theologians. I believe it's some kind of code sent from god.  "not serious at all" :laugh:
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Nazarene on December 31, 2009, 11:39:05 AM
Docetism.

Nope that's not the COE's view, this is.

Because we couple it "without confusion", if you want to get technical, then the weeping, dying in and bleeding occurred through His human nature and the rising from the dead and reigning in Glory occurred through His divine nature, and the walking on water through both--in the same way that if I say "I walked", technically it was my legs that made motions across the ground, not my brain or my fingertips.

The COE likes to "get technical".
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Altar Server on December 31, 2009, 11:59:54 AM
Some of this stuff sounds heretical to me regardless of wether or not my Church considers assyrians heretical or not  :(
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Orthodox11 on December 31, 2009, 12:23:32 PM
Because we couple it "without confusion", if you want to get technical, then the weeping, dying in and bleeding occurred through His human nature and the rising from the dead and reigning in Glory occurred through His divine nature, and the walking on water through both--in the same way that if I say "I walked", technically it was my legs that made motions across the ground, not my brain or my fingertips.

The COE likes to "get technical".


The difference is that when we 'get technical', we still affirm that it was God Incarnate who wept, died, bled, hungered by virtue of His humanity, and that it was God Incarnate who rose from the dead and reigns in glory by virtue of His divinity.

Our problem with what you're saying is that you refuse to attribute the properties of humanity to the divine Person: God Incarnate.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Salpy on December 31, 2009, 12:24:10 PM
Likewise, it is not possible that God bleeds or urinates or defecates or dies or lays in a grave. That is paganism.
Comments?

Docetism.

Docetism is where someone believes Christ's body was not real.  Rafa believes Christ's body was very real.  He just doesn't believe the union between Christ's humanity and divinity was close enough that one can say God did all those things he listed.  

It seems to me he thinks of Christ as only a human person who had God dwelling in him.  I think several posts ago, I asked what the difference is between this and a prophet or saint.  I think one of the allegations that has historically been made against the Nestorians is that their Christology basically made Christ no more than a saint or prophet, except that they seemed to believe that God's indwelling in Christ was of a more permanent nature.

This is why I keep saying in all these Christological debates that terminology is not so important as what is meant by the terminology.  Both the COE and the EO's say "two natures," but it is obvious you believe different things about how those two natures come together in Christ.  EO's and OO's, on the other hand, use different terminology, but we seem to believe the same thing.  
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: ialmisry on December 31, 2009, 12:25:04 PM
Quote
God purchased the Church with His Blood. Acts 20:28.

Doctored Jacobite reading.

I've already shown you the original Greek, which predates Nestorius and Jacob Baradaeus.

I'm looking at the Aland, and the overwhelming evidence is with the Greek Received Text, including St. Epiphanius (an Aramaic speaker from Palestine).  The reading "Christ" is supported only by Ambrose (who also says "Lord"), an Itala, Athanasius (who also says "Lord") and Theodoret, Sinaiticus predating them all.

Quote
The Messiah did. I confess the Mother of Christ. Alaha has no mother, he is eternal and unbegotten.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ikhlas
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: ialmisry on December 31, 2009, 12:26:10 PM
Likewise, it is not possible that God bleeds or urinates or defecates or dies or lays in a grave. That is paganism.
Comments?

Docetism.

Docetism is where someone believes Christ's body was not real.  Rafa believes Christ's body was very real.  He just doesn't believe the union between Christ's humanity and divinity was close enough that one can say God did all those things he listed.  

It seems to me he thinks of Christ as only a human person who had God dwelling in him.  I think several posts ago, I asked what the difference is between this and a prophet or saint.  I think one of the allegations that has historically been made against the Nestorians is that their Christology basically made Christ no more than a saint or prophet, except that they seemed to believe that God's indwelling in Christ was of a more permanent nature.

This is why I keep saying in all these Christological debates that terminology is not so important as what is meant by the terminology.  Both the COE and the EO's say "two natures," but it is obvious you believe different things about how those two natures come together in Christ.  EO's and OO's, on the other hand, use different terminology, but we seem to believe the same thing.  
Amen.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: ialmisry on December 31, 2009, 12:42:34 PM
The Eastern Syriac Khabouris manuscript I cited  contains "Messiah" instead of God. It's Syriac is older than that of the Orthodox Syriac Church, it is the Eastern script and vowel pointers.

Which dates it to considerably later, post 6th century.
The Diacritical Point and the Accents in Syriac By J. B. Segal p. 24.
http://books.google.com/books?id=VsDbyjUqXFEC&printsec=frontcover&dq=The+Diacritical+Point+and+the+accents+in+Syriac&lr=&cd=1#v=onepage&q=&f=false

The Khabouris itself dates over 5 centuries later.

Quote
Also...somebody here please tell me if God would have the possibility of succumbing to temptation to satan like this interpretation of Miaphysitism suggests. Are you saying that when satan tempted the Messiah he was tempting God in a pathetic attempt which would assuredly fail?

So you are defending Satan's intelligence? :-[


Quote
That can't be a true God, now if you were saying he was tempting the human nature of the Messiah that's different.

Only if you seperate the two natures.

Quote
Quote
Your Will, Not Mine! - Mark 14:36

Are you suggesting a schizophrenic Messiah talking to himself?

The text shows plainly (at least in the original Greek ::)) that the Son was talking to the Father.

Quote
I see here the Son of God appealing to the Divine nature in him somehow separate much like your arm can receive directions from your brain but it can't instruct your brain what to do, doesn't mean you are two people. This is material for infinite homilies and I don't pretend I fully understand it, but its what scripture teaches.

St. Maximos might dispute that.


Quote
Also, how can that Son not know the time of his coming (but the father does?) It's because there's a certain separation, much like the branches of a tree are separate but not different trees.

I'll leave it to St. John Chrysostom (you do recognize him, no?) et alia to explain.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Deacon Lance on December 31, 2009, 12:48:06 PM
Deacon Lance, an important thing you must know is that because the Assyrian Church of the East was in the Persian empire by itself, the meanings of the words and theological expressions changed quickly  (ie: person has a very different connotation today than at Nicea, it took 80 years for the COE to approve Nicea), by the time the Assyrian Church formulated its positions and sent them out to show that they were orthodox, their positions were frequently not understood...which is tragic.

Yes, I understand which is why I do not consider Assyrians heretics, nor does my Church.

So the Vatican doesn't think Christ God has blood nor a mother?

Of course it does.  We don't think that Oriental Orthodox are heretics either but we don't use the term miaphysis.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: witega on December 31, 2009, 12:52:21 PM
Docetism.

Nope that's not the COE's view, this is.

Because we couple it "without confusion", if you want to get technical, then the weeping, dying in and bleeding occurred through His human nature and the rising from the dead and reigning in Glory occurred through His divine nature, and the walking on water through both--in the same way that if I say "I walked", technically it was my legs that made motions across the ground, not my brain or my fingertips.

The COE likes to "get technical".


The difference presented by rafa999 goes well beyond the technical. Yes, 'technically', the Eternal Logos, in His Divine nature did not have blood. But the Incarnate God most certainly did and shed it for us. For rafa999 however, that idea is so contrary to his beliefs that he has to posit a change to Scripture in order to avoid it. He also apparently rejects the identification of the Virgin as "Thetokos", "She who gave birth to God." (If I followed that exchange between him and ialmisry correctly). Debating shades of meaning between qnoma and hypostatis in this case is rather missing the forest for the trees.

(and yes, altar server, assuming rafa999 is correctly portraying the faith of his Church, the Roman Catholics would seem to have some explaining to do).
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: witega on December 31, 2009, 12:54:49 PM
Deacon Lance, an important thing you must know is that because the Assyrian Church of the East was in the Persian empire by itself, the meanings of the words and theological expressions changed quickly  (ie: person has a very different connotation today than at Nicea, it took 80 years for the COE to approve Nicea), by the time the Assyrian Church formulated its positions and sent them out to show that they were orthodox, their positions were frequently not understood...which is tragic.

Yes, I understand which is why I do not consider Assyrians heretics, nor does my Church.

So the Vatican doesn't think Christ God has blood nor a mother?

Of course it does.  We don't think that Oriental Orthodox are heretics either but we don't use the term miaphysis.

But I can say that the term 'miaphysis', as explained by the OO I have spoken too is not in contradiction, to the Faith I have received in the EO church. How do you possibly explain rafa999's statements as not in contradiction with the dogma of Council of Ephesus (and Constaninople VI, just to name the top hitters)?
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Deacon Lance on December 31, 2009, 12:58:48 PM
Likewise, it is not possible that God bleeds or urinates or defecates or dies or lays in a grave. That is paganism.
Comments?

Docetism.

This is not Docetism, as they are not denying the reality of the body.  They are trying to protect the impassibilty of the Divine nature.  Please note both Assyrians and Chalcedonians reject the Theopaschite clause (who was crucified for us) in the Trisagion.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Deacon Lance on December 31, 2009, 01:04:14 PM
Deacon Lance, an important thing you must know is that because the Assyrian Church of the East was in the Persian empire by itself, the meanings of the words and theological expressions changed quickly  (ie: person has a very different connotation today than at Nicea, it took 80 years for the COE to approve Nicea), by the time the Assyrian Church formulated its positions and sent them out to show that they were orthodox, their positions were frequently not understood...which is tragic.

Yes, I understand which is why I do not consider Assyrians heretics, nor does my Church.

So the Vatican doesn't think Christ God has blood nor a mother?

Of course it does.  We don't think that Oriental Orthodox are heretics either but we don't use the term miaphysis.

But I can say that the term 'miaphysis', as explained by the OO I have spoken too is not in contradiction, to the Faith I have received in the EO church. How do you possibly explain rafa999's statements as not in contradiction with the dogma of Council of Ephesus (and Constaninople VI, just to name the top hitters)?

See above.  They do not believe that Jesus Christ is two persons any more than Oriental Orthodox believe in Monophysitism.  From a Chalcedonian perspective their terminology may be flawed but so is the Orientals.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Orthodox11 on December 31, 2009, 01:05:45 PM
Please note both Assyrians and Chalcedonians reject the Theopaschite clause (who was crucified for us) in the Trisagion.

Because the Trisagion refers to the Holy Trinity. The Father and Holy Spirit were not crucified, and so to add such a clause would be an unspeakable blasphemy.

The OO's refer the Trisagion to Christ alone, thus avoiding this problem.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: witega on December 31, 2009, 01:12:56 PM
Deacon Lance, an important thing you must know is that because the Assyrian Church of the East was in the Persian empire by itself, the meanings of the words and theological expressions changed quickly  (ie: person has a very different connotation today than at Nicea, it took 80 years for the COE to approve Nicea), by the time the Assyrian Church formulated its positions and sent them out to show that they were orthodox, their positions were frequently not understood...which is tragic.

Yes, I understand which is why I do not consider Assyrians heretics, nor does my Church.

So the Vatican doesn't think Christ God has blood nor a mother?

Of course it does.  We don't think that Oriental Orthodox are heretics either but we don't use the term miaphysis.

But I can say that the term 'miaphysis', as explained by the OO I have spoken too is not in contradiction, to the Faith I have received in the EO church. How do you possibly explain rafa999's statements as not in contradiction with the dogma of Council of Ephesus (and Constaninople VI, just to name the top hitters)?

See above.  They do not believe that Jesus Christ is two persons any more than Oriental Orthodox believe in Monophysitism.  From a Chalcedonian perspective their terminology may be flawed but so is the Orientals.

You avoided the question. I didn't ask (and at this point don't care--it's like rearranging the furniture on the Titanic) how you reconcile the COE's terminology of qnoma, etc with Chalcedon. I want to know how you can agree that 'God did not have blood.'?
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: ialmisry on December 31, 2009, 01:30:23 PM
What the Greeks call hypostasis, the Syriacs call qnoma, and we (Arabs) call 'uqnuum e.g.
The Concept of al-uqnum in Ammar al-Basri's Apology for the Doctrine of the Trinity
http://cat.inist.fr/?aModele=afficheN&cpsidt=12421483

I'm going to quote Brock again:

Quote
"First of all (and this goes without saying), we need to try to understand what writers actually meant by the technical terms they use, rather than rely on what their opponents claimed they meant.....in this context, both the Syriac (Aramaic) terminology, and the understanding of that terminology, in the Church of the East can be described as both archaic and conservative."

"I conclude by looking at two sets of specific example....both are cases where the language used by the Church of the East could best be described as archaic.....we are dealing with imagery which was once widespread and which is still preserved in the Church of the East after it had been for the most part dropped by everyone else in the course of the fifth century controversies."

"It is essentially this (the archaic) understanding of kyana that is retained in the Church of the East.....by contrast, later fifth- and sixth-century Syrian Orthodox writers understand kyana as virtually a synonym with hypostasis.....significantly, in Syriac Orthodox translations of the later fifth and of the sixth century, the older rendering...is replaced by various other translations, thus removing the (now archaic) association of kyana with ousia."

"At the outset I would suggest that....it is important to retain the Syriac term (Qnoma), and not retrovert it into hypostasis (let alone translate it as "person", as has occasionally been done)."

"In many cases...the tradition of the Church of the East will be found to have preserved images and metaphors of the incarnation which were once widely current, but which writers in other Syriac traditions had subsequently dropped, either on grounds of their perceived inadequacy, or because they were thought to lend support to the position of their theological opponents."

"The 4th century texts seem to understand kyana very much with ousia....This meaning was kept unchanged in the East. In the 6th and 7th centuries however the Syrian Orthodox moved with the times and their understanding came close to the Western/Greek development of hypostasis/prosopon. This gave rise to most of the problems."

"The Church of the East in the Sasanian Persian Empire up to the Sixth Century and it's absence from the Councils in the Roman Empire", by Prof. Sebastian Brock, Oxford University, June 25th, 1994, Vienna Austria - presented at the First Syriac Dialogue, hosted by Pro Oriente. ISBN: 3-901188-05-3

Brock advises that we don't "retrovert qnoma into hypostasis" and I'm going to follow his advice.

Brock is a linguist, not a theologian. Don't take your shoes to the baker to get fixed.

Diodore of Tarsus, Theodoret of Cyrhus, and of course Nestorius wrote and debated in Greek, in which language the debates Prof. Brock alludes took place.  Btw, the archaism of the terminology of the Nestorians in 5th and 6th century doesn't date their theology.

Quote
Qnoma does NOT mean hypostasis which Brock, the world's leading authority on the Aramaic language stresses very clearly.
He is the leading authority on the Syriac language, which is not the same as Aramaic. And he admits that the Syriac speaking Orthodox use it for "hypostasis."

Quote
Qnoma is very similar to hypostasis but it's not an exact match.

The way the Nestorians used it no.  But that's a question of theological terminology, not linguistic etymology.

[/quote]Mar Babai the Great said the qnoma means: "A particular nature which has been individuated but not independently personalized". Qnoma means "individuation" it NEVER means "individual", I know that it sounds like the same thing in English but it's not.[/quote]

qnoma d'malka "the person of the king," baqnoma "in person," qnom nafsheh "a certain person," 'ana qnomi "myself."  And d'ma dhaqnomeh "his own blood"  q'nomay alahotha meant "Persons of the Godhead" i.e. the Persons of the Trinity, when we borrowed it.

Quote
We can use English "subsistence" or "person," but it doesn't eliminate the problem, as the terms are not untranslatable.

We can use English "subsistance" or "person" for hypostasis NOT for qnoma.


The Syriac Orthodox do all the time.

Quote
And BTW the Greek word hypostasis has changed in meaning over the centuries as well, before the Christological contraversies began hypostasis wasn't closely interwind with prosopon.

I'm aware of that, and Prof. Brock alludes to it.

Quote
That's why I want to go back to the time before the first Council of Nicaea - to what these Greek words use to mean because the COE's understanding of the Aramaic words in their terminology (which is older than the other Aramaic churches) seems to correspond a lot more closely with the older meanings of the Greek words, but I need to make sure.

Be careful, as the older meanings were condemned as heretical, e.g. homoousios.

Quote
So if anyone can answer the question, I posted earlier I would appreciate it:

Can someone please give me a full explanation of the Hypostatic Union, as well as the older (pre-Nicene) meanings of the Greek words ousia, physis, hypostasis & prosopon?


The way to Nicaea By John Behr
http://books.google.com/books?id=8xDR2D5mQUEC&printsec=frontcover&dq=The+Way+to+Nicea+Behr&cd=1#v=onepage&q=&f=false
http://www.amazon.com/Way-Nicaea-Formation-Christian-Theology/dp/0881412244
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: ialmisry on December 31, 2009, 01:32:46 PM
Docetism.

Nope that's not the COE's view, this is.

Because we couple it "without confusion", if you want to get technical, then the weeping, dying in and bleeding occurred through His human nature and the rising from the dead and reigning in Glory occurred through His divine nature, and the walking on water through both--in the same way that if I say "I walked", technically it was my legs that made motions across the ground, not my brain or my fingertips.

The COE likes to "get technical".

Yeah.  That's how Nestorius got in trouble....
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Salpy on December 31, 2009, 01:59:54 PM
Please note both Assyrians and Chalcedonians reject the Theopaschite clause (who was crucified for us) in the Trisagion.

The EO's, however, did accept the Theopaschite formula in their fifth council.  The Assyrians still reject it, from what I understand.  Also, as pointed out above, the OO's refer to Christ alone in the Trisagion.  The EO's address the Trisagion to the Holy Trinity.  I don't know whether the Assyrians address that hymn to the Holy Trinity or to Christ alone.  I would be interested in knowing, however, if Rafa could tell us.   :)
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: minasoliman on December 31, 2009, 03:14:08 PM
From Fr. Peter's Farrington's article, The Orthodox Christology of Severus of Antioch (http://www.quodlibet.net/articles/farrington-severus.shtml):
Quote
We do not refuse to confess the difference, God forbid! But we flee from this, that we should divide the one Christ in a duality of natures after the union. For if he is divided, the properties of each one of the natures are divided at the same time with him, and what is its own will cling to each one of them. But when a hypostatic union is professed, of which the fulfilment is that from two there is one Christ without confusion, one person, one hypostasis, one nature belonging to the Word incarnate. (I. Torrance, Christology After Chalcedon, Canterbury Press, 1988, p151)

What Severus, and Cyril, strive so hard to prevent is a division of Christ such that there is a human and a God. This is the essence of Nestorianism. In this passage Severus shows the strength of his feeling that we must absolutely confess that the humanity and Divinity of Christ are different things. There is no room for a Eutychian confusion of humanity and Divinity. This recognition of the difference of the nature is not what we object to. What we object to is creating a duality of natures, which does not mean the destruction of the difference between them, rather it means setting up two independent centres of existence, the humanity and the Divinity, and these independent centres of existence destroy the union. It is a hypostatic union that ensures the real union of these different natures. This passage makes clear that firstly, a hypostatic union does not introduce confusion between the humanity and the Divinity; secondly, that 'one nature belonging to the Word incarnate' does not mean either a confused divine/human nature nor does it mean that the humanity is swallowed up by the Divinity; thirdly, the passage makes plain that the union is one in which the different natures have their differences preserved but within one concrete existence, that of the Incarnate Christ, and not preserved independently as the Son of God and a man united in some external manner. The 'duality of natures' which is rejected is not the reality of the humanity and Divinity, but a division between them which destroys the union. What is required is a union which makes One Christ of the two without confusion of either.

It was Cyril, as Severus quotes, who had said that:

The properties of the Word became properties of manhood, and those of manhood, properties of the Word. For thus one Christ and Son and Lord is understood. (I. Torrance, Christology After Chalcedon, Canterbury Press, 1988, p151)

In other words, hypostatic union means a union between concrete realities (human and divine natures of Christ) without confusion and without separation in one concrete reality of the Logos Incarnate.

God bless.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Rafa999 on December 31, 2009, 06:16:39 PM
Quote
the Eternal Logos, in His Divine nature did not have blood.

That's the entire point. The Logos never changed into anything at any time because God does not change:

Quote
I am the LORD, and I do not change.

Malachi 3:6

If the Logos held blood at any one point in time (incarnate= Logos BECAME flesh) his Essence changed and the scripture lies broken. Therefore the reading of Acts 20:28 which I posited is correct, the only reason we don't have manuscripts dating before the 5th century is because the COE burns all manuscripts too old or in tatters to be used in its Churches (like the jews who bury their manuscripts).

Quote
How does the ACOE deal with the verse from the Gospel of John?

"The Word became flesh, and dwelt among us."

To give you an idea of how great a problem this is, the Peshitta reads:ܘܡܠܬܐ ܒܤܪܐ ܗܘܐ ܘܐܓܢ ܒܢ which literally is "Word-the Flesh-the he-was and-he-abided/rested in/by-us.

There you go....Isa agrees with me himself ! The  Logos did not turn into flesh, he rested by us humans. This is what Isaiah 11 is talking about:

Quote
Isaiah 11

 And there shall come forth a rod out of the stem of Jesse, and a Branch shall grow out of his roots:

 And the spirit of the LORD shall rest upon him, the spirit of wisdom and understanding, the spirit of counsel and might, the spirit of knowledge and of the fear of the LORD;

 And shall make him of quick understanding in the fear of the LORD: and he shall not judge after the sight of his eyes, neither reprove after the hearing of his ears:

 But with righteousness shall he judge the poor, and reprove with equity for the meek of the earth: and he shall smite the earth: with the rod of his mouth, and with the breath of his lips shall he slay the wicked.

 And righteousness shall be the girdle of his loins, and faithfulness the girdle of his reins.

 The wolf also shall dwell with the lamb, and the leopard shall lie down with the kid; and the calf and the young lion and the fatling together; and a little child shall lead them.

 And the cow and the bear shall feed; their young ones shall lie down together: and the lion shall eat straw like the ox.

 And the sucking child shall play on the hole of the asp, and the weaned child shall put his hand on the cockatrice' den.

 They shall not hurt nor destroy in all my holy mountain: for the earth shall be full of the knowledge of the LORD, as the waters cover the sea.

 And in that day there shall be a root of Jesse, which shall stand for an ensign of the people; to it shall the Gentiles seek: and his rest shall be glorious.

Docetism is the position that Christ never had a real body and that the crucifixion was an illusion. I obviously never held to such a position.

Talk to the COE Qashas here:

http://www.assyrianchurch.com/forum/
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Deacon Lance on December 31, 2009, 06:20:59 PM
Please note both Assyrians and Chalcedonians reject the Theopaschite clause (who was crucified for us) in the Trisagion.

The EO's, however, did accept the Theopaschite formula in their fifth council.  The Assyrians still reject it, from what I understand.  Also, as pointed out above, the OO's refer to Christ alone in the Trisagion.  The EO's address the Trisagion to the Holy Trinity.  I don't know whether the Assyrians address that hymn to the Holy Trinity or to Christ alone.  I would be interested in knowing, however, if Rafa could tell us.   :)

Chalcedonians did not accept the Theopaschite clause and Rome removed it from the books of the Orientals who entered into union, although it has returned.  When Peter the Fuller inserted it, it was with the intention of bolstering miaphysitism.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Rafa999 on December 31, 2009, 06:25:39 PM
So now, besides having the golden tongued at my left side bolstering my cause (since he was taught by Theodore of Mopsuestia, the interpreter of the COE) I now have the Prophet Isaiah himself at my right. Who challenges me ?
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Salpy on December 31, 2009, 06:35:02 PM
Chalcedonians did not accept the Theopaschite clause and Rome removed it from the books of the Orientals who entered into union, although it has returned.  When Peter the Fuller inserted it, it was with the intention of bolstering miaphysitism.

He inserted it with the intention of protecting against Nestorianism, which at that time was kind of the same thing as "bolstering miaphysitism."   :)  Later, as I said, the Chalcedonians adopted the Theopaschite formula at Contantinople II, showing that one can believe in "two natures" and still have a Cyriliian Christology.  The COE still rejects it, though.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: ialmisry on December 31, 2009, 06:54:09 PM
So now, besides having the golden tongued at my left side bolstering my cause (since he was taught by Theodore of Mopsuestia, the interpreter of the COE) I now have the Prophet Isaiah himself at my right. Who challenges me ?
Our Father among the saints John Chrysostom and the Prophet Isaiah.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: ialmisry on December 31, 2009, 06:59:39 PM
Quote
the Eternal Logos, in His Divine nature did not have blood.

That's the entire point. The Logos never changed into anything at any time because God does not change:

Quote
I am the LORD, and I do not change.

Malachi 3:6

If the Logos held blood at any one point in time (incarnate= Logos BECAME flesh) his Essence changed and the scripture lies broken. Therefore the reading of Acts 20:28 which I posited is correct, the only reason we don't have manuscripts dating before the 5th century is because the COE burns all manuscripts too old or in tatters to be used in its Churches (like the jews who bury their manuscripts).

Quote
How does the ACOE deal with the verse from the Gospel of John?

"The Word became flesh, and dwelt among us."

To give you an idea of how great a problem this is, the Peshitta reads:ܘܡܠܬܐ ܒܤܪܐ ܗܘܐ ܘܐܓܢ ܒܢ which literally is "Word-the Flesh-the he-was and-he-abided/rested in/by-us.

There you go....Isa agrees with me himself ! The  Logos did not turn into flesh, he rested by us humans.

In idiomatic English "The Word was flesh and abided/rested in/by us."  Flesh has blood.  The Word was flesh, so He had blood.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: witega on December 31, 2009, 07:00:52 PM
So now, besides having the golden tongued at my left side bolstering my cause (since he was taught by Theodore of Mopsuestia, the interpreter of the COE) I now have the Prophet Isaiah himself at my right. Who challenges me ?

Dude--St. John Chrysostom came into the discussion because minisoliman showed that he disagreed with you:
"... to feed the Church of God which He hath purchased with His own blood." - St. John Chrysostom, Homily XLIV

I don't know if the issue is that St. John had less contact with Theodore than you're assuming, if he misunderstood Theodore on this point, if he forgot that Theodore was wrong on this point, or if you are misundersting Theodore on this point. But St. John quite clearly believed that God had blood.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Rafa999 on December 31, 2009, 07:07:34 PM
I never said God did not have blood, only the Logos is not made of flesh and blood because he cannot change (he is an invisible spirit which does not change as per his own words pronounced via the Prophet Malachi). God owns all the blood in the world, he has asked us not to eat it because it is holy to him. The Messiah offered his blood as a holy Qurbana but not the Logos. Further, the fact remains that Chrysostom was taught by the interpreter of the COE which agrees with the theology I am expressing. Either Chrysostom agreed with his teacher or he introduced a spurious new teaching not worth studying.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: witega on December 31, 2009, 07:09:19 PM
The Messiah offered his blood as a holy Qurbana but not the Logos.

So the Messiah and the Logos are not the same Person?
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Rafa999 on December 31, 2009, 07:10:23 PM
The Messiah is a person with the Logos dwelling within him with no intermingling with the humanity. The prophet Isaiah said so. This is not the same as a Saint because the FULL Godhead dwelled within the Messiah, the Seven Spirits of God (Isaiah 11).

By the way, your interpretation counts as human sacrifice by the Torah of the Jews of Jesus's time which he kept, while mine counts as an offering to God of the highest order (A Qurbana or Korban).
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: PeterTheAleut on December 31, 2009, 07:14:46 PM
If the Logos held blood at any one point in time (incarnate= Logos BECAME flesh) his Essence changed and the scripture lies broken. Therefore the reading of Acts 20:28 which I posited is correct, the only reason we don't have manuscripts dating before the 5th century is because the COE burns all manuscripts too old or in tatters to be used in its Churches (like the jews who bury their manuscripts).
You're using your predetermined conclusion to prove that our reading of Acts 20:28 must be incorrect.  This is not what I asked for, since your conclusion that the Logos never held blood is itself currently under fire.  If you fail in defending this thesis, then your attack on our reading of Acts 20:28 falls apart as well, since you will have been shown to be basing your attack on a flimsy premise.

What I want to see is original manuscripts that show the "correct" wording of Acts 20:28, manuscripts you have conveniently put out of our reach by asserting that they no longer exist.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: ialmisry on December 31, 2009, 07:20:03 PM
I never said God did not have blood, only the Logos is not made of flesh and blood because he cannot change (he is an invisible spirit which does not change as per his own words pronounced via the Prophet Malachi). God owns all the blood in the world, he has asked us not to eat it because it is holy to him. The Messiah offered his blood as a holy Qurbana but not the Logos.

Then either it wasn't Christ's to offer, or it was, as God Himself.


Quote
Further, the fact remains that Chrysostom was taught by the interpreter of the COE which agrees with the theology I am expressing. Either Chrysostom agreed with his teacher or he introduced a spurious new teaching not worth studying.
It was Chrysostom who converted Theodore, not the reverse, and it was Chrysostom who brought Theodore back after this fall, not the the reverse.
http://www.ccel.org/ccel/schaff/npnf109.v.ii.html?highlight=theodore#highlight
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: PeterTheAleut on December 31, 2009, 07:26:27 PM
The Messiah is a person with the Logos dwelling within him with no intermingling with the humanity.
Thank you for now revealing your true colors.  There's no way any Orthodox Christian can hold to this Nestorian Christology, since we believe that only God can save but can do so only by becoming fully one of us.  You have essentially deprived us of the means of our salvation.  Mankind is utterly lost in your Christology.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Rafa999 on December 31, 2009, 07:45:37 PM
Wrong. God Saves. He accepted the suffering and obedience of the human nature of his son as a sacrifice, he allows us to partake of the divine nature through adoption since we can identify ourselves with his Son who kept his commands. So God does save, only not in the way your teaching.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: minasoliman on December 31, 2009, 07:46:12 PM
The Messiah is a person with the Logos dwelling within him with no intermingling with the humanity.

Are you saying that the Messiah is a separate "self" from the Logos?
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Rafa999 on December 31, 2009, 07:50:34 PM
The Messiah is the Logos dwelling side by side with the fragile human nature. At no point did the Logos change its essence into anything than it ever was before. The Logos cannot change (Malachi 3:6). we are not Muslims, our beliefs must be consistent, no "progressive revelation" please.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: minasoliman on December 31, 2009, 07:55:57 PM
The Messiah is the Logos dwelling side by side with the fragile human nature. At no point did the Logos change its essence into anything than it ever was before. The Logos cannot change (Malachi 3:6). we are not Muslims, our beliefs must be consistent, no "progressive revelation" please.

This isn't progressive.  St. John Chrysostom's Bible showed that God having blood was a belief.  No one here, neither Eastern or Oriental Orthodox believes that the human and divine natures of Christ were altered, changed, or absorbed in anyway, but we also ascribe that the Messiah is the Logos, not a person with a Logos dwelling in him.  It is because that the Messiah is precisely the Logos that we say God has blood and the the Virgin Mary is the Theotokos.  If the Messiah is not Logos, but a "person with a Logos dwelling within Him" then that is blasphemy and our salvation is lost.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Rafa999 on December 31, 2009, 08:00:15 PM
The Messiah is the Logos, he has a human nature too not a single nature. The Logos did not change into human flesh, he is a spirit:

Quote
John 4:24
God is a Spirit: and they that worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth.

Please read Isaiah 11 which I posted above. This was the Christology of the First Christians who were also called "Yessians" because they used Isaiah 11 as their Christology ("From the root of Yesse..."). Christians were also called "Nazarenes" which is derived from "Netzer" which means sprout. The Fullness of the Godhead dwelled in the Messiah, the Messiah IS God, but he has two natures just like the Orthodox faith of Chalcedon states.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: minasoliman on December 31, 2009, 08:08:03 PM
Yes, I agree with you there, but the Messiah is NOT a person with the Logos dwelling in Him.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: PeterTheAleut on December 31, 2009, 08:13:00 PM
The Messiah is the Logos, he has a human nature too not a single nature.
Quit squirming.  Either the Messiah is the Logos or he is a man with the Logos dwelling in him, in which case he is NOT the Logos.  You can't have it both ways.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Rafa999 on December 31, 2009, 08:20:18 PM
There's nothing to "squirmish" about- the Prophet Isaiah said the Messiah would have the 7 spirits (attributes) of God in him. The apostle Paul said the same in the book of Colossians :

Quote
Beware, lest any man make you naked by philosophy, and by vain deception, according to the doctrines of men, according to the rudiments of the world, and not according to the Messiah, in whom dwelleth all the fullness of the Divinity corporeally.

Colossians 2:9

The Messiah has the fullness of God in his Body. He is God, our point to the infinite one whose essence we cannot know directly except via him. He will judge us when we die, and none can know the Father except him.

Quote
John 14:8-11 (New International Version)

 Philip said, "Lord, show us the Father and that will be enough for us."

 Jesus answered: "Don't you know me, Philip, even after I have been among you such a long time? Anyone who has seen me has seen the Father. How can you say, 'Show us the Father'? Don't you believe that I am in the Father, and that the Father is in me? The words I say to you are not just my own. Rather, it is the Father, living in me, who is doing his work. Believe me when I say that I am in the Father and the Father is in me; or at least believe on the evidence of the miracles themselves.

you guys should study a little bit the Jewish Mysticism St. John was familiar with when he wrote Revelation. Read about "Adam Kadmon". Revelation even ends with a vision of the tree of life.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Tzimis on December 31, 2009, 08:35:33 PM
Quote
Beware, lest any man make you naked by philosophy, and by vain deception, according to the doctrines of men, according to the rudiments of the world, and not according to the Messiah, in whom dwelleth all the fullness of the Divinity corporeally.

Which verse is the above quoting. I would like to compare it to the original.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Rafa999 on December 31, 2009, 08:45:09 PM
Peshitta Translation by Murdoch (same one Isa recommended) Colossians 2:9. You can compare with NIV, KJV, the Greek, it will all be the same.

Quote
For in him dwelleth all the fulness of the Godhead bodily.

KJV which uses your Greek textus receptus.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Nazarene on December 31, 2009, 08:56:11 PM
(Byzantine Christology defines hypostasis as prosopon (as self) while the concretion of ousia is physis).

Disclaimer: I do not consider either Assyrians or Oriental Orthodox heretics.

Neither do I, or EOs or RCs for that matter. What matters is to me is this conclusion - that the person Yeshua the Messiah is 100% divine and at the same time 100% human, and ALL these churches (from what I can see) do come to this conclusion ultimately. How you get to this conclusion is interesting but IMO not as important as the conclusion itself.

The Byzantine fathers rejected the term prosopon because they considered it a weak term just as they rejected the term miaphysis.  Prosopon was considered unsuitable because it did not imply the unity of the person stongly enough to them.

Interesting. It seems that the Byzantines and OOs are especially concerned with how Messiah's humanity and divinity are united, while the COE is not concerned with this, they just believe that they are united but don't go into the specifics of how they are united. But they are very concerned with the divinity and humanity not being "mixed together" or the divine nature not being confused with the human nature and vice versa.

Prosopon carried the meaning of personality and was used also of the masks that actors wore.

2 personalities, yip I can see why they wouldn't like a "prosoponic union", but qnoma (according to the COE) does not mean personality.

Miaphysis was rejected because they considered it did not distinguish between the natures strongly enough and could be interpreted as Christ being 50% human 50% divine.

Fr. Deacon Lance

For those who don't know the difference between mia and monos yes Miapysitism can be grossly misinterpreted, and it wasn't until a Copt of Peshitta.org compared monos with yakhid and mia with ekhad that I was able to see this crucial difference. I've told Salpy before on a another thread that the distinction between the divinity and humanity that Miaphysitism makes is not clear enough to my own liking but it's still clear enough for me to see that it's there.

The difference is that when we 'get technical', we still affirm that it was God Incarnate who wept, died, bled, hungered by virtue of His humanity, and that it was God Incarnate who rose from the dead and reigns in glory by virtue of His divinity.

I personally have no problem with the above whatsoever.

Our problem with what you're saying is that you refuse to attribute the properties of humanity to the divine Person: God Incarnate.

Let me be clear about something. What I've been trying to present on this thread is what I've learnt about the Christology of the COE - NOT the Christology that I personally hold. The Christology I personally hold is similar to that of the COE (from what I know about theirs) but I don't know enough about their Christology to declare mine identical to theirs. This thread is about the COE not about me, when I'm talking about the COE I'm talking about them not me.

Brock is a linguist, not a theologian. Don't take your shoes to the baker to get fixed.

Don't underestimate the importance of linguistics with regard to theology. We all say "this Hebrew/Greek/Aramaic word means ___". So I am going to take linguistics into consideration.

Diodore of Tarsus, Theodoret of Cyrhus, and of course Nestorius wrote and debated in Greek, in which language the debates Prof. Brock alludes took place.

Which is why I'm exploring the possibilities of mistranslation, misinterpretation and misunderstaning.

Btw, the archaism of the terminology of the Nestorians in 5th and 6th century doesn't date their theology.

I'm not going to make any conclusions or any assumptions until I look at EVERYTHING from EVERY angel.

Quote
Qnoma does NOT mean hypostasis which Brock, the world's leading authority on the Aramaic language stresses very clearly.
He is the leading authority on the Syriac language, which is not the same as Aramaic. And he admits that the Syriac speaking Orthodox use it for "hypostasis."

And that the COE do not, this thread is about the COE remember?

Quote
Qnoma is very similar to hypostasis but it's not an exact match.

The way the Nestorians used it no.  But that's a question of theological terminology, not linguistic etymology.

Let's look at it linguistically then to see if that's really the case, we won't know unless we do.

Mar Babai the Great said the qnoma means: "A particular nature which has been individuated but not independently personalized". Qnoma means "individuation" it NEVER means "individual", I know that it sounds like the same thing in English but it's not.[/quote]

qnoma d'malka "the person of the king," baqnoma "in person," qnom nafsheh "a certain person," 'ana qnomi "myself."  And d'ma dhaqnomeh "his own blood"  q'nomay alahotha meant "Persons of the Godhead" i.e. the Persons of the Trinity, when we borrowed it.[/quote]

Well I'm concerned with the meaning of qnoma before the Syrian Orthodox Church started trying to bring it into line with some Greek word. Because the COE didn't do that, and again this thread is about them.

Quote
We can use English "subsistence" or "person," but it doesn't eliminate the problem, as the terms are not untranslatable.

We can use English "subsistance" or "person" for hypostasis NOT for qnoma.


The Syriac Orthodox do all the time.

Which is later, and again the COE do not and this thread is about them which is why what the Syrian Orthodox Church does doesn't concern me.

Quote
And BTW the Greek word hypostasis has changed in meaning over the centuries as well, before the Christological contraversies began hypostasis wasn't closely interwind with prosopon.

I'm aware of that, and Prof. Brock alludes to it.

Good, then give me the meaning of hypostasis pre-Nicaea please.

Quote
That's why I want to go back to the time before the first Council of Nicaea - to what these Greek words use to mean because the COE's understanding of the Aramaic words in their terminology (which is older than the other Aramaic churches) seems to correspond a lot more closely with the older meanings of the Greek words, but I need to make sure.

Be careful, as the older meanings were condemned as heretical, e.g. homoousios.

I've heard that about homoousios too. OK then give me the older meanings and state which ones were considered heretical and why. I'll follow your advice concerning this.

Quote
So if anyone can answer the question, I posted earlier I would appreciate it:

Can someone please give me a full explanation of the Hypostatic Union, as well as the older (pre-Nicene) meanings of the Greek words ousia, physis, hypostasis & prosopon?

The way to Nicaea By John Behr
http://books.google.com/books?id=8xDR2D5mQUEC&printsec=frontcover&dq=The+Way+to+Nicea+Behr&cd=1#v=onepage&q=&f=false
http://www.amazon.com/Way-Nicaea-Formation-Christian-Theology/dp/0881412244

Thank you Isa, will read it tomorrow.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Rafa999 on December 31, 2009, 08:59:14 PM
I am here to defend the Orthodox Christology of the COE to all involved note.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Tzimis on December 31, 2009, 09:02:20 PM
Peshitta Translation by Murdoch (same one Isa recommended) Colossians 2:9. You can compare with NIV, KJV, the Greek, it will all be the same.

Quote
For in him dwelleth all the fulness of the Godhead bodily.

KJV which uses your Greek textus receptus.

In Greek θεοτητος σωματικως means God in the flesh.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Rafa999 on December 31, 2009, 09:03:37 PM
Good enough to me despite the limitations of the Greek language to the semitic original. God in the flesh, not God turning into flesh. What are the "Deeds of the Flesh" and the "Deeds of the Spirit" according to St.Paul in Galatians by the way?
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: ialmisry on December 31, 2009, 09:06:07 PM
Peshitta Translation by Murdoch (same one Isa recommended)

I did?  I don't recall that.


Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Rafa999 on December 31, 2009, 09:12:07 PM
My apologies actually you didn't "approve" of my Peshitta, you just linked to it if I am correct. The SOC and COE have their own versions. By the way, nobody here has as of yet explained to me why the oldest sect of Christians in India (the St.Thomas Christians) hold to the same readings the COE does. I wonder why...
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: ialmisry on December 31, 2009, 09:13:49 PM
Good enough to me despite the limitations of the Greek language to the semitic original. God in the flesh, not God turning into flesh. What are the "Deeds of the Flesh" and the "Deeds of the Spirit" according to St.Paul in Galatians by the way?
The Syriac translation isn't going to help.
ܕܒܗ ܥܡܪ ܟܠܗ ܡܘܠܝܐ ܕܐܠܗܘܬܐ ܓܘܫܡܢܐܝܬ
in-him he-lived/inhabited all-his fullness of-divinity bodily/literally
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Nazarene on December 31, 2009, 09:15:43 PM
I am here to defend the Orthodox Christology of the COE to all involved note.

Great. And I'm here to explain what I know about it to the best of my ability - that's it. Let everyone else here be clear concerning this.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Rafa999 on December 31, 2009, 09:20:45 PM
Isa, entire libraries exist on the Jacobite "God has blood" versus the "Messiah has" blood argument of the COE. This one went on for a LONG time before the COE won the argument. The priests of the COE are more qualified to debate this. If I can't appeal to Eastern Syriac which was untampered by the  Monophysites (nobody here is a monophysite hopefully before I am warned) this will be difficult. Its like debating someone on the bible but only being able to cite the Quran. I already showed that someone tampered with Hebrews 1:3 in Vaticanus, I see no reason why the same people who tried doing that wouldn't try to doctor Hebrews 2:9 and Acts 20:28. Also Sinaiticus had a story of a saint scribbled on its back. To this day the COE doesn't throw out books with its holy symbol on it or recycle manuscripts, it places them in libraries or burns them.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Nazarene on December 31, 2009, 09:30:04 PM
Isa, entire libraries exist on the Jacobite "God has blood" versus the "Messiah has" blood argument of the COE. This one went on for a LONG time before the COE won the argument. The priests of the COE are more qualified to debate this. If I can't appeal to Eastern Syriac which was untampered by the  Monophysites (nobody here is a monophysite hopefully before I am warned) this will be difficult. Its like debating someone on the bible but only being able to cite the Quran. I already showed that someone tampered with Hebrews 1:3 in Vaticanus, I see no reason why the same people who tried doing that wouldn't try to doctor Hebrews 2:9 and Acts 20:28. Also Sinaiticus had a story of a saint scribbled on its back. To this day the COE doesn't throw out books with its holy symbol on it or recycle manuscripts, it places them in libraries or burns them.

The proof for the COE tampering the reading in Acts 20:28 is silence - i.e. there is no proof. While the evidence that the COE Peshitta reading for Acts 20:28 is the original reading is lacking, such is not the case for the COE Peshitta reading of Hebrews 2:9.

There is no proof that the COE ever altered any of their texts, when it comes to scribal work the COE's slate is clean, the same cannot be said for the other textual transmissions.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Rafa999 on December 31, 2009, 09:32:45 PM
St.Irenaus of Lyons (an Assyrian just like Tatian and Justin Martyr) cited Eastern Syriac. Look at all his quotations in "Against all Heresies" and you will see it reflects more the COE tradition than the SOC. Jerome cites Hebrews 2:9 of COE Peshitta as well. Comments?

Nobody has also given to me an answer on the issue of a degree of separation in the Messiah between his Divinity and his humanity:

Quote
Your Will, Not Mine! Mark 14:36

You cannot surely believe Jesus is talking to himself here right? That is blasphemy, worse than anything I ever read the muslims or jews write.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Orthodox11 on December 31, 2009, 09:54:11 PM
You cannot surely believe Jesus is talking to himself here right? That is blasphemy, worse than anything I ever read the muslims or jews write.

As someone already said, the Son was speaking to the Father. I think your Sabellian understanding of the Trinity is part of the reason why you seem unable or unwilling to understand our view of Christ.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: ialmisry on December 31, 2009, 09:54:47 PM
St.Irenaus of Lyons (an Assyrian just like Tatian and Justin Martyr) cited Eastern Syriac. Look at all his quotations in "Against all Heresies" and you will see it reflects more the COE tradition than the SOC. Jerome cites Hebrews 2:9 of COE Peshitta as well. Comments?

St. Irenaeus was Greek, and wrote in Greek, to his Greek speaking Diocese.


Quote
Nobody has also given to me an answer on the issue of a degree of separation in the Messiah between his Divinity and his humanity:

Quote
Your Will, Not Mine! Mark 14:36

St. Maximos did.

Quote
You cannot surely believe Jesus is talking to himself here right?

We don't.  It's "Himself," btw.

Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: witega on December 31, 2009, 10:11:02 PM
This one went on for a LONG time before the COE won the argument.

I don't know what you mean by 'won the argument'? The Eastern Orthodox and Oriental Orthodox Churches do not accept the Nestorianism you have been espousing here, so the COE did not 'win the argument' in the sense of convincing anybody else (except, apparently, modern Rome?) that Nestorianism was correct.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Rafa999 on December 31, 2009, 10:14:02 PM
I'm actually not sure on Irenaus but many of the early patristic fathers were Assyrian. Isa, like I said before- I like you man. However how can you say the entire trinity died? I am not Sabellian either, only in the COE the Logos and Holy spirit are the same with the Holy spirit the power of God. By the way, Ambrose agreed with my reading of Acts 20:28. That with Jerome citing Peshitta Hebrews 2:9 is sufficient to convince all Roman Catholics here that I am right. Two pillars agreed with me on this.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: ialmisry on December 31, 2009, 10:17:27 PM
Isa, entire libraries exist on the Jacobite "God has blood" versus the "Messiah has" blood argument of the COE. This one went on for a LONG time before the COE won the argument. The priests of the COE are more qualified to debate this. If I can't appeal to Eastern Syriac which was untampered by the  Monophysites (nobody here is a monophysite hopefully before I am warned) this will be difficult. Its like debating someone on the bible but only being able to cite the Quran. I already showed that someone tampered with Hebrews 1:3 in Vaticanus, I see no reason why the same people who tried doing that wouldn't try to doctor Hebrews 2:9 and Acts 20:28. Also Sinaiticus had a story of a saint scribbled on its back. To this day the COE doesn't throw out books with its holy symbol on it or recycle manuscripts, it places them in libraries or burns them.

The proof for the COE tampering the reading in Acts 20:28 is silence - i.e. there is no proof. While the evidence that the COE Peshitta reading for Acts 20:28 is the original reading is lacking, such is not the case for the COE Peshitta reading of Hebrews 2:9.

There is no proof that the COE ever altered any of their texts, when it comes to scribal work the COE's slate is clean, the same cannot be said for the other textual transmissions.


Now THAT's an argument from silence.

We have the evidence that the reading was "God," which PHYSICALLY (i.e. not dependent on later, literary evidence) shows the reading "God."  Showing a 11th century text, and claiming it shows the original text doesn't trump that.

I didn't get to look over the post on Hebrews 2:9.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Nazarene on December 31, 2009, 10:22:44 PM
You cannot surely believe Jesus is talking to himself here right? That is blasphemy, worse than anything I ever read the muslims or jews write.

As someone already said, the Son was speaking to the Father. I think your Sabellian understanding of the Trinity is part of the reason why you seem unable or unwilling to understand our view of Christ.

Some sources for COE theology:

On God, including the Trinity (from Marganitha): http://www.nestorian.org/book_of_marganitha_part_i.html
On Christ, including the Incarantion (from Marganitha): http://www.nestorian.org/book_of_marganitha_part_iii.html
On Christ, from a Muslim-Christian dialogue: http://www.tertullian.org/fathers/timothy_i_apology_01_text.htm
Catechism: http://www.acoeyouth.org/Learn/catechism/cat.html
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: ialmisry on December 31, 2009, 10:28:11 PM
I'm actually not sure on Irenaus but many of the early patristic fathers were Assyrian.

You mean Aramaic speakers or of the Assyrian nationality?  Both are true, but I am not sure what that has to do with anything.  Assyrian as in theology, i.e. Nestorian? No.

Quote
Isa, like I said before- I like you man. However how can you say the entire trinity died?

St. Paul says so in Phillipians.

Quote
I am not Sabellian either, only in the COE the Logos and Holy spirit are the same with the Holy spirit the power of God. By the way, Ambrose agreed with my reading of Acts 20:28. That with Jerome citing Peshitta Hebrews 2:9 is sufficient to convince all Roman Catholics here that I am right. Two pillars agreed with me on this.

LOL.  Jerome overturned the boundary mark the Fathers had set up, translated from a Hebrew text (and NOT, btw, a Syriac text: we have plenty of information from Jerome on that), rather than the LXX.  He accepted ordination from a supposed patriarch of Antioch, whose line died out and it not claimed by any of the 4 patriarchs the Vatican claims for Antioch.  He was also one of the very few who agreed with the deposition of St. John Chrysostom, from which the guilty repented.

Watch out about leaning on "pillars."
(http://www.ucgstp.org/lit/vt/vt20/p_samson.jpg)
http://www.ucgstp.org/lit/vt/vt20/p_samson.jpg

Btw, what the Vatican says doesn't interest us, OO or EO.  Though Rome was right in condemning Nestorius at the Third Ecumenical Council.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Nazarene on December 31, 2009, 10:32:02 PM
Now THAT's an argument from silence.

We have the evidence that the reading was "God," which PHYSICALLY (i.e. not dependent on later, literary evidence) shows the reading "God."  Showing a 11th century text, and claiming it shows the original text doesn't trump that.

Actually the earliest Greek mss say "the Lord" not "God", if no tampering occured all the Greek mss would say the same thing but they do not. The fact is the Greek mss vary between "the Lord" or "God" or "the Lord and God" in that verse, and this demands an explanation.

Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: ialmisry on December 31, 2009, 10:36:12 PM
Isa, entire libraries exist on the Jacobite "God has blood" versus the "Messiah has" blood argument of the COE.

Its not a "Jacobite" argument.  It's an Orthodox one, based on the texts the Apostles gave us, in Greek.

Quote
This one went on for a LONG time before the COE won the argument.

360 (the latest date of Sinaiticus) doesn't give you that much time, particularly as the Peshitta postdates it.

Quote
The priests of the COE are more qualified to debate this. If I can't appeal to Eastern Syriac which was untampered by the  Monophysites (nobody here is a monophysite hopefully before I am warned) this will be difficult. Its like debating someone on the bible but only being able to cite the Quran. I already showed that someone tampered with Hebrews 1:3 in Vaticanus,

No, someone made a mistake in it, and it was corrected.

You have made it rather difficult, as your text has no history that you claim, and hence no corroboration that isn't cherry picked.

Quote
I see no reason why the same people who tried doing that wouldn't try to doctor Hebrews 2:9 and Acts 20:28. Also Sinaiticus had a story of a saint scribbled on its back. To this day the COE doesn't throw out books with its holy symbol on it or recycle manuscripts, it places them in libraries or burns them.

Thereby destroying the "evidence."

I don't recall ever seeing such a claim that books aren't recycled, as I've seen the opposite in ancient manuscripts.  I don't have specifics on the Nestorian case, as I wouldn't have thought, until now, worth noticing.  I'll look around.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: ialmisry on December 31, 2009, 10:54:50 PM
Now THAT's an argument from silence.

We have the evidence that the reading was "God," which PHYSICALLY (i.e. not dependent on later, literary evidence) shows the reading "God."  Showing a 11th century text, and claiming it shows the original text doesn't trump that.

Actually the earliest Greek mss say "the Lord" not "God",

Skimming the list in Aland, no, the earliest have "God."

Quote
if no tampering occured all the Greek mss would say the same thing but they do not.

No.  Textual criticism finds such differences rather standard.  Even in monolingual texts.


Quote
The fact is the Greek mss vary between "the Lord" or "God" or "the Lord and God" in that verse, and this demands an explanation.
It has one: An Examination and Exegesis of Acts 20:28, Mike Sarkissian (Go Armenia!).
http://sovereigngracecc.org/files/An%20Examination%20and%20Exegesis%20of%20Acts%2020.28.pdf
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: bogdan on December 31, 2009, 11:08:54 PM
If the Logos held blood at any one point in time (incarnate= Logos BECAME flesh) his Essence changed and the scripture lies broken.

The eternal Logos became incarnate without change. We say so at every Divine Liturgy:

"Only-begotten Son and Word of God who art immortal, who for our salvation willed to be incarnate of the Holy Theotokos and Ever-Virgin Mary, and without change became Man..."

Plus, God lies outside the bounds of time. If something looks like change, it's because we are limited in perspective and trapped in a time-based understanding of the universe.

Some of these things are flat paradoxes in our limited understanding. That's fine. The failure to accept paradoxes instead of limiting God has led to many heresies over the centuries.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: ozgeorge on January 01, 2010, 12:49:18 AM
If the Logos held blood at any one point in time (incarnate= Logos BECAME flesh) his Essence changed and the scripture lies broken.
The Logos is an Hypostasis, or what you call a Parsopa, not a Nature.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Rafa999 on January 01, 2010, 12:53:08 AM
In the Assyrian Church of the East the Logos is a Hypostasis, be careful though, because in the Assyrian Church a Hypostasis is not the same as a parsopa. Again the terminology used is different. Whenever you see the word "Qnome" in Assyrian patristics think Hypostasis, they are the same, or rather it is the best most accurate term I can think to convey Qnome. Again the Diagram:

(http://dukhrana.com/images/kyana_qnoma_parsopa.gif)
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: ozgeorge on January 01, 2010, 12:59:04 AM
Whenever you see the word "Qnome" in Assyrian patristics think Hypostasis, they are the same, or rather it is the best most accurate term I can think to convey Qnome.
I thought Nazarene said they are not and that "Mar Babai the Great said the qnoma means: "A particular nature which has been individuated but not independently personalized". So how can Hypostasis equate to qnome?
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Rafa999 on January 01, 2010, 01:05:02 AM
Qnome: member of a taxonomic class

Mar Babai's definition is correct, sorry for the confusion.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: ozgeorge on January 01, 2010, 01:11:16 AM
Qnome: member of a taxonomic class


Best definition. Mar Babai's is the definition I use as well, sorry.
But then qnome does not mean hypostasis since hypostasis is personalized. Thus the Logos is a single Hypostasis in which there are two natures. Therefore to claim that "the Logos never held blood" means that the Hypostasis of the flesh and blood of Jesus Christ is a different hypostasis to the pre-eternal Logos-  (i.e. Nestorianism).
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Rafa999 on January 01, 2010, 01:27:22 AM
Look, I am not a fluent Syriac speaker so I am not qualified enough for this, however the definition of Qnome I gave is considered by a Deacon and Syriac/Aramaic translator I know the best he has heard (it is also Sebastian Brock's I believe), Mar Babai's is also an official one, further the COE never believed in "Nestorianism". Read the bazaar of Heracleides by Nestorius and you will see so. Read also the common Christological declaration signed by Mar Dinkha with the pope to see that the COE is in essence Chalcedonian.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Salpy on January 01, 2010, 01:44:43 AM
further the COE never believed in "Nestorianism". Read the bazaar of Heracleides by Nestorius and you will see so.

Read reply #5 in this thread for an analysis of some passages from the Bazaar of Heracleides by Fr. Anastasios:

http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,3673.msg48474.html#msg48474

It seems Nestorius did hold to the set of beliefs that is called "Nestorianism" by the OO's and EO's.

When you say "the COE never beleived in 'Nestorianism,'" are you saying the COE condemns the teachings of Nestorius?  Isn't he a saint in the COE?

Note that I realize "Nestorianism" is a bit of a misnomer.  The set of beliefs commonly referred to as Nestorianism is, as I understand it, more properly referred to as "Theodorean Christology," since Theodore was the teacher of Nestorius.  Is that what you mean when you say the COE never believed in Nestorianism?  

I'm just trying to understand what you meant.
  

Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: jnorm888 on January 01, 2010, 01:47:01 AM
So now, besides having the golden tongued at my left side bolstering my cause (since he was taught by Theodore of Mopsuestia, the interpreter of the COE) I now have the Prophet Isaiah himself at my right. Who challenges me ?

If you don't mind me asking, how old are you?








ICXC NIKA
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: jnorm888 on January 01, 2010, 02:09:49 AM
My apologies actually you didn't "approve" of my Peshitta, you just linked to it if I am correct. The SOC and COE have their own versions. By the way, nobody here has as of yet explained to me why the oldest sect of Christians in India (the St.Thomas Christians) hold to the same readings the COE does. I wonder why...

I could be wrong about this, but I read....on one of the threads in the OO section.....that they asked the COE for help, and that turned into them being under them for a time, then they were under the OO's some time later.

And so, the COE could of changed their readings to be more in line with theirs.






ICXC NIKA
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Rafa999 on January 01, 2010, 02:22:44 AM
Quote
I could be wrong about this, but I read....on one of the threads in the OO section.....that they asked the COE for help, and that turned into them being under them for a time, then they were under the OO's some time later.

And so, the COE could of changed their readings to be more in line with theirs.


The St.Thomas Christians asked the SOC for help by accident. You see, when the Portuguese destabilized the Indian Episcopate of the COE the St.Thomas Christians asked the Bishop of Antioch to appoint them a new Bishop, but then the SOC was in charge of Antioch not the Assyrian Church of the East. So there you go. Now all I want to ask is why the Christians of the Thomasine tradition, 100 percent independent from Rome, Byzantium, the Sassanids, etc. would choose the East Syrian readings of scripture as correct? Theirs is a completely independent tradition.

Happy new Year!

Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: jnorm888 on January 01, 2010, 02:42:19 AM
This one went on for a LONG time before the COE won the argument.

I don't know what you mean by 'won the argument'? The Eastern Orthodox and Oriental Orthodox Churches do not accept the Nestorianism you have been espousing here, so the COE did not 'win the argument' in the sense of convincing anybody else (except, apparently, modern Rome?) that Nestorianism was correct.

Reformed Protestantism has a Nestorian wing/tradition. You can see it in some protestant circles.









ICXC NIKA
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Rafa999 on January 01, 2010, 03:02:00 AM
This is not Orthodox:

(http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/b/b0/Monophysite.svg/535px-Monophysite.svg.png)

(Christology I am being confronted with in this thread where God gets a "new" nature and "becomes" something, ie: "becomes" like us)

This is orthodox (my Christology):

(http://dukhrana.com/images/kyana_qnoma_parsopa.gif)

Am I a heretic for ascribing to the second position?

Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Deacon Lance on January 01, 2010, 03:12:47 AM
further the COE never believed in "Nestorianism". Read the bazaar of Heracleides by Nestorius and you will see so.

Read reply #5 in this thread for an analysis of some passages from the Bazaar of Heracleides by Fr. Anastasios:

http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,3673.msg48474.html#msg48474

It seems Nestorius did hold to the set of beliefs that is called "Nestorianism" by the OO's and EO's.

When you say "the COE never beleived in 'Nestorianism,'" are you saying the COE condemns the teachings of Nestorius?  Isn't he a saint in the COE?

Note that I realize "Nestorianism" is a bit of a misnomer.  The set of beliefs commonly referred to as Nestorianism is, as I understand it, more properly referred to as "Theodorean Christology," since Theodore was the teacher of Nestorius.  Is that what you mean when you say the COE never believed in Nestorianism?  

I'm just trying to understand what you meant.
  



The Assyrians are not "Nestorians" because they do not believe that Christ is two persons.











Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Salpy on January 01, 2010, 03:13:25 AM
OK, that purple "new nature" thing is not what anyone here believes in.  It's rejected by both the OO's and EO's.  We believe Christ is fully human and fully divine, without separation or division, but also without confusion or mingling.  We do not believe a new nature was formed.  I know it sounds incredible, but that's how God is.  He does things we don't understand.  That's the Incarnation.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Deacon Lance on January 01, 2010, 03:19:25 AM
Chalcedonians did not accept the Theopaschite clause and Rome removed it from the books of the Orientals who entered into union, although it has returned.  When Peter the Fuller inserted it, it was with the intention of bolstering miaphysitism.

He inserted it with the intention of protecting against Nestorianism, which at that time was kind of the same thing as "bolstering miaphysitism."   :)  Later, as I said, the Chalcedonians adopted the Theopaschite formula at Contantinople II, showing that one can believe in "two natures" and still have a Cyriliian Christology.  The COE still rejects it, though.

By Theopaschite clause I mean inserting the phrase "who was crucified for us" into the Trisagion.   Chalcedonians did not adopt this phrase in the Trisagion.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Rafa999 on January 01, 2010, 03:23:27 AM
Thank you Deacon Lance for saying that nobody in the Assyrian Church of the East believes in two persons, that would be "Nestorianism".
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Salpy on January 01, 2010, 03:24:55 AM
Deacon Lance,

There's more to Nestorianism (Theodorean Christology) than a simple belief in two persons.  In fact, pretty early on in this discussion (reply 70) I acknowledged that the assertion that the Assyrians believe in two persons is a misconception.  The difference in our Christologies is more subtle than that, but it seems there is a real difference.  If you look at what Rafa is saying, it seems the COE speaks of Christ's divinity and humanity as being much more separate from each other than what the OO's and EO's feel comfortable with.  I would think the Catholics would be uncomfortable with that also, but I could be wrong.  
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Salpy on January 01, 2010, 03:31:51 AM
Chalcedonians did not accept the Theopaschite clause and Rome removed it from the books of the Orientals who entered into union, although it has returned.  When Peter the Fuller inserted it, it was with the intention of bolstering miaphysitism.

He inserted it with the intention of protecting against Nestorianism, which at that time was kind of the same thing as "bolstering miaphysitism."   :)  Later, as I said, the Chalcedonians adopted the Theopaschite formula at Contantinople II, showing that one can believe in "two natures" and still have a Cyriliian Christology.  The COE still rejects it, though.

By Theopaschite clause I mean inserting the phrase "who was crucified for us" into the Trisagion.   Chalcedonians did not adopt this phrase in the Trisagion.

Yes, I know, but as pointed out above, it's because the EO's address the prayer to the Holy Trinity, not only to Christ.  The EO's, however, believe in what the OO's are saying with the Theopaschite clause, because they basically adopted the same sort of phrase in their fifth council.  The Theopaschite formula I keep mentioning is in their fifth council, and it says One of the Trinity suffered in the flesh.  That Theopaschite formula, adopted by the EO's says the same thing as the Theopaschite clause used by the OO's in the Trisagion.

The point I have been trying to make is that the EO's do not reject the concept behind the Theopaschite clause used by the OO's in the Trisagion.  The COE does reject the concept. 
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Rafa999 on January 01, 2010, 03:36:32 AM
Read this Salpy:

http://nestorian.org/book_of_marganitha_part_iii.html#part3chap5

http://nestorian.org/book_of_marganitha_part_iii.html#part3chap7

in fact read all of the Marganitha (Book of the Pearl) it is a good catechism with very ancient material.

Quote
Qnuma in Greek is called hypostasis, namely, that which underlies the essence, by which the nature is known. And Parsoopa: the Greeks call prosopon: We Easterns, there­fore, profess that M’shikha (Messiah) Our Lord is in two Natures in one person. But the question of the Godhead and humanity is brought into discussion in order so as to distin­guish the natural properties of each Nature, then of necessity we are led to the discussion of Qnuma (the essence or under­lying substance) by which the Nature is distinguished. These facts, therefore, lead us to the indisputable evidence of the existence of two Qnume which are the underlying properties of these (two) Natures, in one person of the Son of God.
taken from Marganitha
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Salpy on January 01, 2010, 03:46:51 AM
I'm afraid Mar Odisho, who wrote the pearl, seems in your first link to be misrepresenting what we believe, just as you have been.  We don't believe that either the human or divine natures were destroyed or corrupted.  If you don't want us to misrepresent your beliefs, it would be nice if you stopped misrepresenting ours.   :)
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: ialmisry on January 01, 2010, 03:47:42 AM
further the COE never believed in "Nestorianism". Read the bazaar of Heracleides by Nestorius and you will see so.

Read reply #5 in this thread for an analysis of some passages from the Bazaar of Heracleides by Fr. Anastasios:

http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,3673.msg48474.html#msg48474

It seems Nestorius did hold to the set of beliefs that is called "Nestorianism" by the OO's and EO's.

When you say "the COE never beleived in 'Nestorianism,'" are you saying the COE condemns the teachings of Nestorius?  Isn't he a saint in the COE?

Note that I realize "Nestorianism" is a bit of a misnomer.  The set of beliefs commonly referred to as Nestorianism is, as I understand it, more properly referred to as "Theodorean Christology," since Theodore was the teacher of Nestorius.  Is that what you mean when you say the COE never believed in Nestorianism?  

I'm just trying to understand what you meant.
  



The Assyrians are not "Nestorians" because they do not believe that Christ is two persons.
But they believe that Christ had blood but the Logos doesn't.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Deacon Lance on January 01, 2010, 04:04:23 AM
Salpy,

Catholics and Orthodox maintain the impassability of the divine nature, it does not suffer nor does it die, although these things can be said of Christ in this we follow the Tome of St. Leo.  

Canon X of Constantinople II reads:
If anyone does not confess that our Lord Jesus Christ who was crucified in the flesh is true God and the Lord of Glory and one of the Holy Trinity:  let him be anathema.  

Fr Deacon Lance
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Salpy on January 01, 2010, 04:05:11 AM
The Assyrians are not "Nestorians" because they do not believe that Christ is two persons.
But they believe that Christ had blood but the Logos doesn't.

Yeah, I guess that does sound like two persons.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Salpy on January 01, 2010, 04:13:44 AM

Catholics and Orthodox maintain the impassability of the divine nature, it does not suffer nor does it die,

Yes, we maintain the impassability of the divine nature, but with St. Cyril, we also hold that:

Quote
12. If any one confess not that the Word of God suffered in the Flesh and hath been crucified in the Flesh and tasted death in the Flesh and hath been made First-born of the Dead, inasmuch as He is both Life and Life-giving as God, be he anathema.

http://www.voskrese.info/spl/cyr3.html

The Orthodox--both OO and EO--believe in this.  Don't the Catholics also uphold this?
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Deacon Lance on January 01, 2010, 04:28:22 AM
The Assyrians are not "Nestorians" because they do not believe that Christ is two persons.
But they believe that Christ had blood but the Logos doesn't.

Yeah, I guess that does sound like two persons.

Or it can sound like they are trying to keep the natures distinct.  Blood is a property of the human nature not the divine.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Deacon Lance on January 01, 2010, 04:33:37 AM

Catholics and Orthodox maintain the impassability of the divine nature, it does not suffer nor does it die,

Yes, we maintain the impassability of the divine nature, but with St. Cyril, we also hold that:

Quote
12. If any one confess not that the Word of God suffered in the Flesh and hath been crucified in the Flesh and tasted death in the Flesh and hath been made First-born of the Dead, inasmuch as He is both Life and Life-giving as God, be he anathema.

The Orthodox--both OO and EO--believe in this.  Don't the Catholics also uphold this?


Yes.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: minasoliman on January 01, 2010, 04:54:05 AM
To be quite honest with this discussion, I'm getting two different Christological teachings, where Nazarene seems to try to show the subject of Christ as the same as the Logos, whereas Rafa999 implies a belief in two centers of subjects acting together, the Logos dwelling in the Son of Man, which I find very troubling, and in Byzantine understanding implies two persons.

Perhaps, a more qualified Assyrian church member should discuss these issues with us, like Deacon Paul Younan, who keeps coming back to us in quotes.  I would love to see him clarify some of the teachings of his Church.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: ozgeorge on January 01, 2010, 08:21:21 AM
Quote
Qnuma in Greek is called hypostasis, namely, that which underlies the essence, by which the nature is known.
I think this is where wires are getting crossed. If Qnoma means hypostasis, then according to this diagram, Christ is a union of two separate hypostases, (one human hypostasis + one divine hypostasis) which is Nestorianism:

(http://dukhrana.com/images/kyana_qnoma_parsopa.gif)

I really think, "qnoma" means "ousia" ("Essence"), and not "hypostasis".
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: ialmisry on January 01, 2010, 08:30:36 AM
Quote
Qnuma in Greek is called hypostasis, namely, that which underlies the essence, by which the nature is known.
I think this is where wires are getting crossed. If Qnoma means hypostasis, then according to this diagram, Christ is a union of two separate hypostases, (one human hypostasis + one divine hypostasis) which is Nestorianism:

(http://dukhrana.com/images/kyana_qnoma_parsopa.gif)

I really think, "qnoma" means "ousia" ("Essence"), and not "hypostasis".


But according to the diagram, that would make the Father and the Spirit two essences alongside the Son.  All Syriac/Aramaic speaking Christians (Syriac Orthodox, those in submission to the Vatican, Maronites, Assyrians, Mar Thoma Christians, etc.) all agree on using the term "qnoma" for the Father, Son and Holy Spirit.  That's how we Arab Orthodox got the term.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: ozgeorge on January 01, 2010, 08:38:27 AM
Quote
Qnuma in Greek is called hypostasis, namely, that which underlies the essence, by which the nature is known.
I think this is where wires are getting crossed. If Qnoma means hypostasis, then according to this diagram, Christ is a union of two separate hypostases, (one human hypostasis + one divine hypostasis) which is Nestorianism:

(http://dukhrana.com/images/kyana_qnoma_parsopa.gif)

I really think, "qnoma" means "ousia" ("Essence"), and not "hypostasis".


But according to the diagram, that would make the Father and the Spirit two essences alongside the Son.  All Syriac/Aramaic speaking Christians (Syriac Orthodox, those in submission to the Vatican, Maronites, Assyrians, Mar Thoma Christians, etc.) all agree on using the term "qnoma" for the Father, Son and Holy Spirit.  That's how we Arab Orthodox got the term.
So then qnoma is neither hypostasis nor ousia, but something else.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Nazarene on January 01, 2010, 10:42:25 AM
Salpy,

Catholics and Orthodox maintain the impassability of the divine nature, it does not suffer nor does it die, although these things can be said of Christ in this we follow the Tome of St. Leo.

As do the COE and remember that they approved of the Tome of St. Leo.

Canon X of Constantinople II reads:
If anyone does not confess that our Lord Jesus Christ who was crucified in the flesh is true God and the Lord of Glory and one of the Holy Trinity:  let him be anathema.  

Fr Deacon Lance

Yip and the COE do confess this, as do the rest of you.


Catholics and Orthodox maintain the impassability of the divine nature, it does not suffer nor does it die,

Yes, we maintain the impassability of the divine nature,

Good, that should prove beyond a shadow of a doubt that OOs are not monophysite ala Eutychius. I hope Rafa is paying attention here.

but with St. Cyril, we also hold that:

Quote
12. If any one confess not that the Word of God suffered in the Flesh and hath been crucified in the Flesh and tasted death in the Flesh and hath been made First-born of the Dead, inasmuch as He is both Life and Life-giving as God, be he anathema.

http://www.voskrese.info/spl/cyr3.html

The Orthodox--both OO and EO--believe in this.  Don't the Catholics also uphold this?

Yes they do, and so do the COE - the key is "in the flesh". Misunderstandings will arise if you say things like "God died" or "God suffered" without clarifying that you mean "in the flesh". As Deacon Lance rightly observed:

The Assyrians are not "Nestorians" because they do not believe that Christ is two persons.
But they believe that Christ had blood but the Logos doesn't.

Yeah, I guess that does sound like two persons.

Or it can sound like they are trying to keep the natures distinct.  Blood is a property of the human nature not the divine.

Yes that is exactly it! For the COE it's important to keep the natures distinct, and this is what EOs and OOs need to assure them of - that your Christologies do the same even though your terminologies differ from theirs. When dialoguing with the COE emphasize that the natures of Messiah are united without confusion or mixture, explain how miaphysitism or the hypostatic union makes this possible - which it does.

As for the COE they need to assure EOs and OOs that the natures of Messiah are united - and they do believe that they are. But they don't get into specifics of how this unity works because they follow Mar Ephrem's advice to not "pry into the mystery" that is Yeshua Meshikha. Is the Incarnation not in fact an ineffable mystery? Hasn't it done us more harm than good to pry deeper into the mystery of the Incarnation than the simple fact Yeshua Meshikha is both God and Man?

When it comes to specifically how the union of Messiah's humanity and divinity works, I have to be honest, I myself refuse to pry into "the mechanics" of this and I'll tell you why:

I am not Messiah, I do not have a divine qnoma or a divine kyana in addition to my human qnoma and human kyana within my parsopa. Therefore I cannot logically explain the parsopa who is Yeshua Meshikha - true God and true Man, no matter how hard I try. No matter what analogy I use, no matter what metaphor or terminology, at the end of the day the Incarnation is an ineffable mystery so my explanation will always fall short. We humans often forget that our knowledge is finite and therefore we often think we know something but the truth is we don't.

I accept that Messiah is God and Man as fact through faith alone not logic because this is what Scripture teaches. Others like the Jews or Muslims may not accept this but I don't care - I'm under no obligation to give a logical explanation for something that really cannot be explained logically. They can choose to accept it through faith like me or not, it's a faith issue end of story.

So then qnoma is neither hypostasis nor ousia, but something else.

That's extactly my point. Qnoma is not abstract like kyana but it's not independently personalized like hypostasis or prosopon. Qnome are not unique, they are clones. Qnome can differ in what they do (eg: the Qnome of the Trinity - the Father is the beggetor, the Son the begotten and the Holy Spirit the proceeding) but they do not differ (at all) in what they are (qnome of the same kyana that is).

Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Nazarene on January 01, 2010, 10:56:02 AM
To be quite honest with this discussion, I'm getting two different Christological teachings, where Nazarene seems to try to show the subject of Christ as the same as the Logos, whereas Rafa999 implies a belief in two centers of subjects acting together, the Logos dwelling in the Son of Man, which I find very troubling, and in Byzantine understanding implies two persons.

Perhaps, a more qualified Assyrian church member should discuss these issues with us, like Deacon Paul Younan, who keeps coming back to us in quotes.  I would love to see him clarify some of the teachings of his Church.

It's important not to be quick to jump to conclusions regarding the COE's Christology because it's not easy to explain. I am certainly no expert on this topic but I am trying my best to explain it by using quotes from those more knowledgable than I, like Shamasha Paul Younan, Andrew Gabriel Roth and Prof. Sebastian Brock.

Please note that the Assyrian clergy themselves struggle to explain qnoma, even in their own language:

Quote from: Paul Younan
Prof. Brock is as white as you can get. And he isn't a member of my church, either. But he has a perfect understanding of this concept - more so, I dare say, than most of the priests in the Church of the East whose sermons on this topic I have listened to in frustration.

Also remember that there's always the possibilty that the person doing the explaining has used the wrong choice of word - you'd be surprised how often this happens.

As for inviting Paul Younan to this forum, he can be rearched at his forum's email address (http://www.peshitta.org/forum/viewtopic.php?f=17&t=612&start=0).
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Salpy on January 01, 2010, 12:13:50 PM

but with St. Cyril, we also hold that:

Quote
12. If any one confess not that the Word of God suffered in the Flesh and hath been crucified in the Flesh and tasted death in the Flesh and hath been made First-born of the Dead, inasmuch as He is both Life and Life-giving as God, be he anathema.

http://www.voskrese.info/spl/cyr3.html

The Orthodox--both OO and EO--believe in this.  Don't the Catholics also uphold this?

Yes they do, and so do the COE - the key is "in the flesh". Misunderstandings will arise if you say things like "God died" or "God suffered" without clarifying that you mean "in the flesh"

Are you sure the COE accepts St. Cyril's 12th Anathema?  I thought the COE rejected all of them and considered St. Cyril to be a heretic.  The phrase "in the flesh" makes it possible for the EO's, Catholics, and OO's to say the Word of God suffered, etc.  However, I thought the COE avoided that phrase altogether, preferring to say that Christ suffered.


Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Nazarene on January 01, 2010, 12:21:41 PM
Quote
The way to Nicaea By John Behr
http://books.google.com/books?id=8xDR2D5mQUEC&printsec=frontcover&dq=The+Way+to+Nicea+Behr&cd=1#v=onepage&q=&f=false
http://www.amazon.com/Way-Nicaea-Formation-Christian-Theology/dp/0881412244

Thank you Isa, will read it tomorrow.

Er Isa, you got a downloadable pdf or online html explanation handy? Or can you quote something for me?
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Nazarene on January 01, 2010, 12:32:21 PM

but with St. Cyril, we also hold that:

Quote
12. If any one confess not that the Word of God suffered in the Flesh and hath been crucified in the Flesh and tasted death in the Flesh and hath been made First-born of the Dead, inasmuch as He is both Life and Life-giving as God, be he anathema.

http://www.voskrese.info/spl/cyr3.html

The Orthodox--both OO and EO--believe in this.  Don't the Catholics also uphold this?

Yes they do, and so do the COE - the key is "in the flesh". Misunderstandings will arise if you say things like "God died" or "God suffered" without clarifying that you mean "in the flesh"

Are you sure the COE accepts St. Cyril's 12th Anathema?  I thought the COE rejected all of them and considered St. Cyril to be a heretic.  The phrase "in the flesh" makes it possible for the EO's, Catholics, and OO's to say the Word of God suffered, etc.  However, I thought the COE avoided that phrase altogether, preferring to say that Christ suffered.

They rejected St. Cyril's anathemas as a whole but that doesn't necessarily mean that they can't agree with certain points he makes.

And "Christ suffered" can be interpreted to mean "God suffered in the flesh" which is what I truely believe they really mean. They have a problem if you say "God suffered" but if you clarify that with "in the flesh" then the response I always get from my Assyrian friends is: "Oh so that's what you meant by 'God suffered', ok then we agree with you."

Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Salpy on January 01, 2010, 12:38:25 PM
It's my understanding that they reject even "The Word of God suffered in the flesh."

Saying "Christ suffered" is not necessarily the same thing if you believe in separation between Christ and the Word of God.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Nazarene on January 01, 2010, 12:57:17 PM
It's my understanding that they reject even "The Word of God suffered in the flesh."

Tell me more.

Saying "Christ suffered" is not necessarily the same thing if you believe in separation between Christ and the Word of God.

That's assuming that they do believe in separation between Christ and the Word of God but they insist that they don't. They just don't go into the "mechanics" of the union like you guys do, they simply believe that there is union.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: ialmisry on January 01, 2010, 01:12:57 PM
So then qnoma is neither hypostasis nor ousia, but something else.

That's extactly my point. Qnoma is not abstract like kyana but it's not independently personalized like hypostasis or prosopon. Qnome are not unique, they are clones. Qnome can differ in what they do (eg: the Qnome of the Trinity - the Father is the beggetor, the Son the begotten and the Holy Spirit the proceeding) but they do not differ (at all) in what they are (qnome of the same kyana that is).

EO's, correct me if I am wrong, but we would say that the Father as begettor is not just what He does, but also what He is.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Tzimis on January 01, 2010, 01:19:22 PM
Now I'm no authority on the issue but it seems to me that The AOC with this diagram doesn't believe in a pre-incarnate Christ or Holy Spirit.

[attachment deleted by admin]
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Nazarene on January 01, 2010, 01:25:25 PM
So then qnoma is neither hypostasis nor ousia, but something else.

That's extactly my point. Qnoma is not abstract like kyana but it's not independently personalized like hypostasis or prosopon. Qnome are not unique, they are clones. Qnome can differ in what they do (eg: the Qnome of the Trinity - the Father is the beggetor, the Son the begotten and the Holy Spirit the proceeding) but they do not differ (at all) in what they are (qnome of the same kyana that is).

EO's, correct me if I am wrong, but we would say that the Father as begettor is not just what He does, but also what He is.

My parents begat me, but there is no difference between their qnome and my qnoma except that theirs occured before mine making theirs occurance numbers #___ and #___ while mine is occurance number #___.

From Marganitha regarding the Trinity:

Quote
Everything that exists must be either a material body whose existence is the subject of accidents and changes, and is acted upon by whatever is opposed to it; or not a body, and consequently not the subject of any of these things. Now, we have already proved, that God (glory be to His incomprehensibility) is not a body and therefore is not subject to anything pertaining to materiality, from which He is infinitely removed. Whatever is immaterial, and not subject to anything appertaining to matter, the traditions of the ancients call Mind. And whatever is exclusive of matter, and of what appertains thereto, must be knowing, and must know himself, because himself is ever present and known to him, and it is not dependent on anything but itself. And whatever knows its essence must be living. Therefore God is Wise and Living. Now, he who is wise discerns because of his wisdom; and he who is living is living because he has life. This is the mystery of the Trinity, which the Church confesses of that Adorable Nature, Mind, Wisdom and Life. Three co-essential properties in One, and One who is glorified in three properties. The Mind (the Church) has called Father and Begetter, because He is the Cause of all, and First. The Son (She) has called Wisdom and Begotten, because He is begotten of the Mind, and by Him everything was made and created. The Life (She) has called, the Holy Spirit and Proceeding, because there is no other Holy Spirit but He. He who is Holy is unchangeable, according to the interpretation of received expositors; and this is that which is declared by John the Divine, the son of Zebedee: “In the beginning was the Word;[4]” and, “the Life is the light of men[5]”. Now in the manner of the soul which is possessed of three-fold energy; mind, word, and life, and is one and not three; even so should we conceive of the THREE IN ONE, ONE IN THREE. The sun also, which is one in its disk, radiance, and heat, is another simile adduced by the second Theologus Paul, the chosen[6] vessel: “He is the brightness of His glory, and the Express Image of His being;[7]” and, again: “Christ, the power of God, and the wisdom[8]of God “. Further, everything that exists is either an accident or a substance. But the Self-existent can in no wise be susceptible of accident. Therefore these three properties are consubstantial and are on this account called (Qnume) hypostasis or substance and not accidental powers, nor do they cause change in the nature of the consubstantial nor plurality; for He is the Mind, the Same He is the Wisdom, the Same He is the Life, Who ever begat without cessation, and puts forth (makes to proceed) without removal from Himself. These things (cessation removal) are infinitely removed from Him for there is no real likeness between created natures and the Nature of the eternally existing and a simile does not in everything resemble that which is compared by it; for then the simile and that which is compared by it would be the thing itself, and we (who have just instituted several comparisons) would not be unlike the man who attempts to compare a thing by the self-same thing. The mystery of the Trinity is expressed in the words of the Old Testament: “Let us make man in our own image, after our likeness;” the occurrence of the letter noon[9]three times in this sentence is an indication of the Trinity. The “Holy” thrice repeated in the seraphic hymn, as mentioned by Isaiah, joined with one “Lord “, attests Three Qnume in One nature. The words of David, also, are of ‘the same import: “By the Word of the Lord were the heavens made, and all the host of them by the breath of His mouth;” and many other like references. Let the heathen, then, and Jews who rail at the truth of the Catholic Church, on account of her faith in the Trinity, be confounded and put to shame. Here endeth the first part.

[4]John 1.1
[5]John 1.4
[6]Acts 9.15
[7]Hebrews 1.3
[8]1. Corinthians 1.24
[9]Neabed Masha Bealman Akh D’Mutan (Gen. 1.26)

Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Nazarene on January 01, 2010, 01:28:13 PM
Now I'm no authority on the issue but it seems to me that The AOC with this diagram doesn't believe in a pre-incarnate Christ or Holy Spirit.

Can you explain how you got this impression?
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Deacon Lance on January 01, 2010, 01:28:31 PM
It's my understanding that they reject even "The Word of God suffered in the flesh."

Saying "Christ suffered" is not necessarily the same thing if you believe in separation between Christ and the Word of God.

5) In the Creed we confess: “ . . . He suffered and was crucified in the days of Pontius Pilate . . .” what is the purpose for this statement?

To show to the believer, that our Lord did indeed and in fact suffered and died, to give evidence of His humanity, contrary to the heresy of one of the early centuries of The Church history, who taught that Jesus Christ was a phantom.  “ . . . know ye that the Spirit of God, every spirit that confesses that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is of God . . . and every spirit that confesses not that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is not of God . . . and this that spirit of anti-Christ, whereof ye have heard that it should come and even now is already in the world . .” (I John 4:2,3)

7)   How is it possible to apply suffering and death to our Lord Jesus Christ, since we confess Him as God?

His suffering is not applied to His Godhead, but rather to that of His humanity (manhood), not because He could not have avoided it, but by an act of love and willingly accepted the consequences of humanity and their sin.  It is written, “ . . . My Father doth love Me, because I lay down My life, that I might take it again.  No man takes it from Me, but I lay it down of Myself, I have power to lay it down, and I have power to take it again.  This have I received of My Father . . .”  (John 10:17:18)

http://www.acoeyouth.org/Learn/catechism/cat.html
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Salpy on January 01, 2010, 01:35:12 PM
It's my understanding that they reject even "The Word of God suffered in the flesh."

Tell me more.


Saying "Christ suffered" is not necessarily the same thing if you believe in separation between Christ and the Word of God.

That's assuming that they do believe in separation between Christ and the Word of God but they insist that they don't. They just don't go into the "mechanics" of the union like you guys do, they simply believe that there is union.

Read this thread.  Rafa speaks repeatedly about the Messiah as having blood, etc. but God the Word can't.  He's been separating them during this entire discussion:

     The COE does not call Mary "Theotokos" since Mary gave birth to the humanity not the divinity. The Holy Spirit crafted a human body, a "Temple" for God, but the humanity and Divinity are separate.


And it's not because we have failed to qualify what we have been saying with the phrase "in the flesh."  We've made it very clear all along that when we attribute blood, suffering, etc. to the Word of God, that we mean within the Incarnation, "in the flesh."  Very early on in this discussion I cited St. Cyril's anathema and emphasized "in the flesh," and Rafa rejected even that:

When we say that the Incarnate Word of God suffered in the flesh and tasted death in the flesh (See St. Cyril's 12th anathema and the EO's Fifth Council,) we are expressing the reality of the union of divinity and humanity in the Incarnation. 
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Nazarene on January 01, 2010, 01:43:55 PM
It's my understanding that they reject even "The Word of God suffered in the flesh."

Tell me more.


Saying "Christ suffered" is not necessarily the same thing if you believe in separation between Christ and the Word of God.

That's assuming that they do believe in separation between Christ and the Word of God but they insist that they don't. They just don't go into the "mechanics" of the union like you guys do, they simply believe that there is union.

Read this thread.  Rafa speaks repeatedly about the Messiah as having blood, etc. but God the Word can't.  He's been separating them during this entire discussion:

     The COE does not call Mary "Theotokos" since Mary gave birth to the humanity not the divinity. The Holy Spirit crafted a human body, a "Temple" for God, but the humanity and Divinity are separate.


And it's not because we have failed to qualify what we have been saying with the phrase "in the flesh."  We've made it very clear all along that when we attribute blood, suffering, etc. to the Word of God, that we mean within the Incarnation, "in the flesh."  Very early on in this discussion I cited St. Cyril's anathema and emphasized "in the flesh," and Rafa rejected even that:

When we say that the Incarnate Word of God suffered in the flesh and tasted death in the flesh (See St. Cyril's 12th anathema and the EO's Fifth Council,) we are expressing the reality of the union of divinity and humanity in the Incarnation. 

Well that's Rafa, he's obviously not accurately expressing his church's Christology and he wouldn't be the first. Perhaps it wasn't his intention to make this impression, I don't know, I don't know him personally so I want to give him the benefit of the doubt, perhaps it's just a case where things are "coming out wrong" - this happens to all of us. But if this is what Rafa personally believes then, well, the COE's christology is different. Remember Rafa has said that he himself is not a "expert" on this topic.


Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Salpy on January 01, 2010, 01:54:48 PM
I don't know if Rafa is accurately expressing his Church's beliefs, but it seems he was catechized by the COE.  Also, what I think started this whole thing was something that I quoted from their catechism which compared Christ and his divinity to the President and the office of the presidency.  Again, that is not something I or any other OO would ever say.

You seem to feel that the COE confesses that "the Word of God suffered in the flesh."  If that is so, then I would like to see someone from the COE actually confess that, in those words. 

Saying that "Jesus Christ" suffered is not necessarily the same thing if the relationship between Christ and the Word is the same as the relationship between the man who is the president and the office of the presidency.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Salpy on January 01, 2010, 02:03:19 PM
By the way, I know I have read that Mar Babai the Great explicitly rejected the Theopaschite formula which the EO's put in their fifth council.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Tzimis on January 01, 2010, 02:03:43 PM
Now I'm no authority on the issue but it seems to me that The AOC with this diagram doesn't believe in a pre-incarnate Christ or Holy Spirit.

Can you explain how you got this impression?

Where kyana represents two natures, gnoma is representing a separation of the essence or Kyana. Giving the impression that the holy spirit and Christ have there beginning in time. While kyana also represent the fragmenting of human nature, it doesn't differentiate whether that human nature is preexistent or not. In other words the diagram is equating human nature with its own essence. While in orthodoxy the ousia is specific to just the trinity.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Nazarene on January 01, 2010, 02:40:27 PM
Shalom Salpy,

It's OK I'm also still learning ;)

I don't know if Rafa is accurately expressing his Church's beliefs, but it seems he was catechized by the COE. Also, what I think started this whole thing was something that I quoted from their catechism which compared Christ and his divinity to the President and the office of the presidency.  Again, that is not something I or any other OO would ever say.

OK let me review that quote:

Quote
35)   In what sense can we recognize or acknowledge certain theological terminology used by our beloved sister apostolic churches who will address The Ever Virgin Mary as “The Mother of God”??

The Orthodox position will declare this: The Blessed Mother did not give birth to His Godhead, which is from eternal; but rather she had given birth to His manhood, at the end of time, still it is right to be called “the Mother of God,” why?  Because He who is born of her is at once God and Man.  By way of example: The mother of the President of the United States did not give birth to his presidency, she gave birth to the man; and indeed we call her the mother of the President; and again, the Catholicos Patriarch of the East received his office from The Church, and not from his mother who bore him, and we do call her the mother of the Patriarch.

This Catechism was compiled for the Assyrian Church of the East Youth Ministry, so I'm guessing that they were trying to use analogies simple enough for kids to understand? I really don't know Salpy, I didn't compile this, I suppose you can write to those who teach this Catechism (Diocese of California) for clarification.

What kind of analogies would OOs use?

You seem to feel that the COE confesses that "the Word of God suffered in the flesh."  If that is so, then I would like to see someone from the COE actually confess that, in those words.


I'll try to find at least one quote from an official document, in addition to what Deacon Lance has already posted from the Catechism:

It's my understanding that they reject even "The Word of God suffered in the flesh."

Saying "Christ suffered" is not necessarily the same thing if you believe in separation between Christ and the Word of God.

5) In the Creed we confess: “ . . . He suffered and was crucified in the days of Pontius Pilate . . .” what is the purpose for this statement?

To show to the believer, that our Lord did indeed and in fact suffered and died, to give evidence of His humanity, contrary to the heresy of one of the early centuries of The Church history, who taught that Jesus Christ was a phantom.  “ . . . know ye that the Spirit of God, every spirit that confesses that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is of God . . . and every spirit that confesses not that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is not of God . . . and this that spirit of anti-Christ, whereof ye have heard that it should come and even now is already in the world . .” (I John 4:2,3)

7)   How is it possible to apply suffering and death to our Lord Jesus Christ, since we confess Him as God?

His suffering is not applied to His Godhead, but rather to that of His humanity (manhood), not because He could not have avoided it, but by an act of love and willingly accepted the consequences of humanity and their sin.  It is written, “ . . . My Father doth love Me, because I lay down My life, that I might take it again.  No man takes it from Me, but I lay it down of Myself, I have power to lay it down, and I have power to take it again.  This have I received of My Father . . .”  (John 10:17:18)

http://www.acoeyouth.org/Learn/catechism/cat.html

Also the COE does recite the Nicene Creed which includes this statement:

"...he was crucified for us under Pontius Pilate, and suffered, and was buried, and the third day he rose again, according to the Scriptures, and ascended into heaven, and sitteth on the right hand of the Father;"

Saying that "Jesus Christ" suffered is not necessarily the same thing if the relationship between Christ and the Word is the same as the relationship between the man who is the president and the office of the presidency.

Fair enough but can we really determine that that's the case if we don't look at the Catechism as a whole?

By the way, I know I have read that Mar Babai the Great explicitly rejected the Theopaschite formula which the EO's put in their fifth council.

As he should've.

Now I'm no authority on the issue but it seems to me that The AOC with this diagram doesn't believe in a pre-incarnate Christ or Holy Spirit.

Can you explain how you got this impression?

Where kyana represents two natures, gnoma is representing a separation of the essence or Kyana. Giving the impression that the holy spirit and Christ have there beginning in time. While kyana also represent the fragmenting of human nature, it doesn't differentiate whether that human nature is preexistent or not. In other words the diagram is equating human nature with its own essence. While in orthodoxy the ousia is specific to just the trinity.

A diagram should always be accompanied by an explanation of it to put it into perspective IMO, so what do you think when I accompany this:

(http://dukhrana.com/images/kyana_qnoma_parsopa.gif)

with this:

Quote
“A singular essence is called a ‘qnoma’. It stands alone, one in number, that is, one as distinct from the many. A qnoma is invariable in its natural state and is bound to a species and nature, being one [numerically] among a number of like qnome. It is distinctive among its fellow qnome [only] by reason of any unique property or characteristic which it possesses in its ‘parsopa’. With rational creatures this [uniqueness] may consist of various [external and internal] accidents, such as excellent or evil character, or knowledge or ignorance, and with irrational creatures [as also with the rational] the combination of various contrasting features. [Through the parsopa we distinguish that] Gabriel is not Michael, and Paul is not Peter. However, in each qnoma of any given nature the entire common nature is known, and intellectually one recognizes what that nature, which encompasses all its qnome, consists of. A qnoma does not encompass the nature as a whole [but exemplifies what is common to the nature, such as, in a human qnoma, body, soul, mind, etc.].”—Fourth Memra, Book of the Union, Published by Corpus Scriptorum Christianorum Orientalium, Paris, 1915, A. Vaschalde, ed.

This diagram is not about chronology of existance but level of existence - abstract, concrete and material.

Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Deacon Lance on January 01, 2010, 02:41:44 PM
From the Assyrian Liturgy:

[The priest and the deacons kneel three times towards the place of the paten and the chalice. The priest proceeds and takes the paten, and the deacon the chalice. The priest begins the anthem:]

Priest: I waited patiently for the Lord.

The body of Christ and His precious blood are upon the holy altar. Let us all draw near unto Him in fear and love and with all the angels sing aloud unto Him: Holy, Holy, Holy Lord God.
[The deacons respond:]

The poor shall eat and be satisfied.

The body of Christ and his precious blood are upon the holy altar. Let us all draw near unto Him in fear and love and with the angels sing aloud unto Him: Holy, Holy, Holy Lord God.

Let us pray. Peace be with us.

[The priest then holds the paten in his right hand and the chalice in his left hand in the form of the cross and says:]

Let us send up praise to Thy glorious Trinity at all times for ever. May Christ, Who was sacrificed for our salvation and Who commanded us to make a commemoration of His death and burial and resurrection, accept this sacrifice at our hands by His grace and mercy for ever. Amen.

Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: minasoliman on January 01, 2010, 03:19:13 PM
From the Assyrian Liturgy:

[The priest and the deacons kneel three times towards the place of the paten and the chalice. The priest proceeds and takes the paten, and the deacon the chalice. The priest begins the anthem:]

Priest: I waited patiently for the Lord.

The body of Christ and His precious blood are upon the holy altar. Let us all draw near unto Him in fear and love and with all the angels sing aloud unto Him: Holy, Holy, Holy Lord God.
[The deacons respond:]

The poor shall eat and be satisfied.

The body of Christ and his precious blood are upon the holy altar. Let us all draw near unto Him in fear and love and with the angels sing aloud unto Him: Holy, Holy, Holy Lord God.

Let us pray. Peace be with us.

[The priest then holds the paten in his right hand and the chalice in his left hand in the form of the cross and says:]

Let us send up praise to Thy glorious Trinity at all times for ever. May Christ, Who was sacrificed for our salvation and Who commanded us to make a commemoration of His death and burial and resurrection, accept this sacrifice at our hands by His grace and mercy for ever. Amen.

Does the Assyrian Liturgy have the Trisagion (Holy God, Holy Might, Holy Immortal)?  It seems interesting here that the Assyrians, like the OO's, apply the Trisagion "Holy, Holy, Holy" to Christ.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Deacon Lance on January 01, 2010, 03:27:49 PM
Yes.  But it is refered to Trinity:

"The deacon turns toward the people and says:

Lift your voices, all you people, and glorify the living God.

They reply:

Holy God, Holy Mighty One, Holy Immortal One: Have mercy on us.

Deacon: Glory to the Father and to the Son and to the Holy Spirit.

People: Holy God…

Deacon: From age to age, amen, amen.

People: Holy God…

Deacon: Let us pray. Peace be with us.

Prayer of “Holy God”

O Holy, Glorious, Mighty and Immortal One, who dwells in the saints and delights in them: we implore you: turn to us, O Lord, pardon us and have mercy on us as you always do: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, forever.

People: Amen"
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Tzimis on January 01, 2010, 03:29:09 PM


A diagram should always be accompanied by an explanation of it to put it into perspective IMO, so what do you think when I accompany this:

(http://dukhrana.com/images/kyana_qnoma_parsopa.gif)

with this:

Quote
“A singular essence is called a ‘qnoma’. It stands alone, one in number, that is, one as distinct from the many. A qnoma is invariable in its natural state and is bound to a species and nature, being one [numerically] among a number of like qnome. It is distinctive among its fellow qnome [only] by reason of any unique property or characteristic which it possesses in its ‘parsopa’. With rational creatures this [uniqueness] may consist of various [external and internal] accidents, such as excellent or evil character, or knowledge or ignorance, and with irrational creatures [as also with the rational] the combination of various contrasting features. [Through the parsopa we distinguish that] Gabriel is not Michael, and Paul is not Peter. However, in each qnoma of any given nature the entire common nature is known, and intellectually one recognizes what that nature, which encompasses all its qnome, consists of. A qnoma does not encompass the nature as a whole [but exemplifies what is common to the nature, such as, in a human qnoma, body, soul, mind, etc.].”—Fourth Memra, Book of the Union, Published by Corpus Scriptorum Christianorum Orientalium, Paris, 1915, A. Vaschalde, ed.

This diagram is not about chronology of existance but level of existence - abstract, concrete and material.



I see what you mean now. You shouldn't have a problem agreeing with this than.


Quote
And these two natural wills are not contrary the one to the other (God forbid!) as the impious heretics assert, but his human will follows and that not as resisting and reluctant, but rather as subject to his divine and omnipotent will. For it was right that the flesh should be moved but subject to the divine will, according to the most wise Athanasius. For as his flesh is called and is the flesh of God the Word, so also the natural will of his flesh is called and is the proper will of God the Word, as he himself says: “I came down from heaven, not that I might do mine own will but the will of the Father which sent me!” where he calls his own will the will of his flesh, inasmuch as his flesh was also his own. For as his most holy and immaculate animated flesh was not destroyed because it was deified but continued in its own state and nature, so also his human will, although deified, was not suppressed, but was rather preserved according to the saying of Gregory Theologus: “His will [i.e., the Saviour’s] is not contrary to God but altogether deified.”
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Nazarene on January 01, 2010, 03:33:17 PM
Quote
And these two natural wills are not contrary the one to the other (God forbid!) as the impious heretics assert, but his human will follows and that not as resisting and reluctant, but rather as subject to his divine and omnipotent will. For it was right that the flesh should be moved but subject to the divine will, according to the most wise Athanasius. For as his flesh is called and is the flesh of God the Word, so also the natural will of his flesh is called and is the proper will of God the Word, as he himself says: “I came down from heaven, not that I might do mine own will but the will of the Father which sent me!” where he calls his own will the will of his flesh, inasmuch as his flesh was also his own. For as his most holy and immaculate animated flesh was not destroyed because it was deified but continued in its own state and nature, so also his human will, although deified, was not suppressed, but was rather preserved according to the saying of Gregory Theologus: “His will [i.e., the Saviour’s] is not contrary to God but altogether deified.”

No problem at all, and I don't think the COE will either.

Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Tzimis on January 01, 2010, 03:55:10 PM
I still think the diagram is very incomplete. As it doesn't address mans gnomic will leaving out the possibility of theosis.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: PeterTheAleut on January 01, 2010, 03:58:49 PM
You seem to feel that the COE confesses that "the Word of God suffered in the flesh."  If that is so, then I would like to see someone from the COE actually confess that, in those words. 
This is what I would like to see as well.  Right now I see one representative of the COE, Rafa999, making statements that on their face are clearly heretical, and I see one or two persons NOT in the COE trying to tell us that Rafa999 is misrepresenting COE doctrine.  I'm sorry, but this strikes me as rather presumptuous to tell us what the COE really believes when you are NOT in the COE and are trying to override what a member of the COE has stated about his own church.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: PeterTheAleut on January 01, 2010, 03:59:32 PM
I still think the diagram is very incomplete. As it doesn't address mans gnomic will leaving out the possibility of theosis.
I think you're trying to project onto the diagram what you would like to see when the diagram is clearly intended to communicate something different.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Nazarene on January 01, 2010, 04:06:38 PM
You seem to feel that the COE confesses that "the Word of God suffered in the flesh."  If that is so, then I would like to see someone from the COE actually confess that, in those words. 
This is what I would like to see as well.  Right now I see one representative of the COE, Rafa999, making statements that on their face are clearly heretical, and I see one or two persons NOT in the COE trying to tell us that Rafa999 is misrepresenting COE doctrine.  I'm sorry, but this strikes me as rather presumptuous to tell us what the COE really believes when you are NOT in the COE and are trying to override what a member of the COE has stated about his own church.

Deacon Lance and I have utilized COE writings in our posts like quotes from Mar Babai's Book of Union, the COE's Catechism, the COE's Liturgy and quotes from Paul Younan who is a Deacon in the COE. How do what they say compare to what Rafa says?

Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: PeterTheAleut on January 01, 2010, 04:08:55 PM
You seem to feel that the COE confesses that "the Word of God suffered in the flesh."  If that is so, then I would like to see someone from the COE actually confess that, in those words. 
This is what I would like to see as well.  Right now I see one representative of the COE, Rafa999, making statements that on their face are clearly heretical, and I see one or two persons NOT in the COE trying to tell us that Rafa999 is misrepresenting COE doctrine.  I'm sorry, but this strikes me as rather presumptuous to tell us what the COE really believes when you are NOT in the COE and are trying to override what a member of the COE has stated about his own church.

Deacon Lance and I have utilized COE writings in our posts like quotes from Mar Babai's Book of Union, the COE's Catechism, the COE's Liturgy and quotes from Paul Younan who is a Deacon in the COE. How do what they say compare to what Rafa says?


The presenters are different.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Nazarene on January 01, 2010, 04:19:55 PM
Look, I am not a fluent Syriac speaker so I am not qualified enough for this,

Neither am I which is why I'm quoting folks who are like Paul Younan and Dr. Sebastian Brock.

Whenever you see the word "Qnome" in Assyrian patristics think Hypostasis, they are the same, or rather it is the best most accurate term I can think to convey Qnome.
I thought Nazarene said they are not and that "Mar Babai the Great said the qnoma means: "A particular nature which has been individuated but not independently personalized". So how can Hypostasis equate to qnome?

Qnome: member of a taxonomic class

Mar Babai's definition is correct, sorry for the confusion.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Salpy on January 01, 2010, 05:19:37 PM

The body of Christ and His precious blood are upon the holy altar. Let us all draw near unto Him in fear and love and with all the angels sing aloud unto Him: Holy, Holy, Holy Lord God.


The question is what do they mean by "Christ" and by "Lord God?"  Look again at this post by Mina (#158) wherein he quotes Theodore of Mopsuestia using separate pronouns for Christ and the Lord Who "dwelt" in Him:

http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,9572.msg389223.html#msg389223

Theodore is a saint in the COE.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Rafa999 on January 01, 2010, 06:32:21 PM
It's my understanding that they reject even "The Word of God suffered in the flesh."

Tell me more.


Saying "Christ suffered" is not necessarily the same thing if you believe in separation between Christ and the Word of God.

That's assuming that they do believe in separation between Christ and the Word of God but they insist that they don't. They just don't go into the "mechanics" of the union like you guys do, they simply believe that there is union.

Read this thread.  Rafa speaks repeatedly about the Messiah as having blood, etc. but God the Word can't.  He's been separating them during this entire discussion:

    The COE does not call Mary "Theotokos" since Mary gave birth to the humanity not the divinity. The Holy Spirit crafted a human body, a "Temple" for God, but the humanity and Divinity are separate.


And it's not because we have failed to qualify what we have been saying with the phrase "in the flesh."  We've made it very clear all along that when we attribute blood, suffering, etc. to the Word of God, that we mean within the Incarnation, "in the flesh."  Very early on in this discussion I cited St. Cyril's anathema and emphasized "in the flesh," and Rafa rejected even that:

When we say that the Incarnate Word of God suffered in the flesh and tasted death in the flesh (See St. Cyril's 12th anathema and the EO's Fifth Council,) we are expressing the reality of the union of divinity and humanity in the Incarnation.  

Well that's Rafa, he's obviously not accurately expressing his church's Christology and he wouldn't be the first. Perhaps it wasn't his intention to make this impression, I don't know, I don't know him personally so I want to give him the benefit of the doubt, perhaps it's just a case where things are "coming out wrong" - this happens to all of us. But if this is what Rafa personally believes then, well, the COE's christology is different. Remember Rafa has said that he himself is not a "expert" on this topic.





Actually I am expressing my Church's Christology correctly- The Divinity does not have Flesh and blood in the conventional way you and I do. It is Spirit. Nor is Mary Mother of God. If she gave birth to Christ's divinity, she would in fact be his grandmother not mother. I am not a monophysite or a miaphysite: there is no intermingling of the two natures. They are completely separate. Clay and Iron do not mix. The Prophet Isaiah taught so, Jesus taught so, the COE teaches so. Nor does God have blood, nor can he be begotten by a human being, nor can the divinity suffer like a human being, or else the universe stops. This agrees with the council of Chalcedon:

Quote
Following the holy Fathers, we unanimously teach and confess one and the same Son, our Lord Jesus Christ: the same perfect in divinity and perfect in humanity, the same truly God and truly man, composed of rational soul and body; consubstantial with the Father as to his divinity and consubstantial with us as to his humanity; "like us in all things but sin." He was begotten from the Father before all ages as to his divinity and in these last days, for us and for our salvation, was born as to his humanity of the virgin Mary, the Mother of God.

We confess that one and the same Christ, Lord, and only-begotten Son, is to be acknowledged in two natures without confusion, change, division, or separation (in duabus naturis inconfuse, immutabiliter, indivise, inseparabiliter). The distinction between natures was never abolished by their union, but rather the character proper to each of the two natures was preserved as they came together in one person (prosopon) and one hypostasis.

Text of Ecumenical Council of Chalcedon, 451  :angel:

everything else is mere exposition. All I want is people here to confess that the two natures of the Messiah retained their distinction and were not corrupted or destroyed. Otherwise you DO believe in that diagram I posted. Further, Theodore of Mopsuestia is a PILLAR of the Antiochan tradition, he is a Saint and I will defend his Christology. Cyril is not a Saint in the COE- his "anathema" means nothing to us. The Peshitta speaks of lord and LORD, there is a distinction. Lastly, I will only use semitic terminology here since this game of changing the meaning of words was played too long against the COE and I'm not falling into that trap.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Tzimis on January 01, 2010, 06:35:54 PM
I still think the diagram is very incomplete. As it doesn't address mans gnomic will leaving out the possibility of theosis.
I think you're trying to project onto the diagram what you would like to see when the diagram is clearly intended to communicate something different.

I'm glad you can see it's communicative function as I feel it's quite incomplete and dangerous.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Salpy on January 01, 2010, 07:00:43 PM

Actually I am expressing my Church's Christology correctly- The Divinity does not have Flesh and blood in the conventional way you and I do. It is Spirit. Nor is Mary Mother of God. If she gave birth to Christ's divinity, she would in fact be his grandmother not mother. I am not a monophysite or a miaphysite: there is no intermingling of the two natures. They are completely separate. Clay and Iron do not mix. The Prophet Isaiah taught so, Jesus taught so, the COE teaches so. Nor does God have blood, nor can he be begotten by a human being. This agrees with the council of Chalcedon:

      ...


Text of Ecumenical Council of Chalcedon, 451  :angel:

everything else is mere exposition. All I want is people here to confess that the two natures of the Messiah retained their distinction and were not corrupted or destroyed. Otherwise you DO believe in that diagram I posted. Further, Theodore of Mopsuestia is a PILLAR of the Antiochan tradition, he is a Saint and I will defend his Christology. Cyril is not a Saint in the COE- his "anathema" means nothing to us. The Peshitta speaks of lord and LORD, there is a distinction. Lastly, I will only use semitic terminology here since this game of changing the meaning of words was played too long against the COE and I'm not falling into that trap.

Thank you Rafa, for clarifying.  Just to make sure I understand, though, I want to confirm:  I read you as saying that the COE rejects any statement that the Word of God suffered, had blood, etc. even with the phrase "in the flesh" attached to it.  If I am reading you incorrectly about this, please let us know.

Also, you seem to be implying that Chalcedon supports the Christology of Theodore.  I think the Chalcedonians here would disagree with you on that.  What specifically have you been taught by your Church about Chalcedon?  Has your Church taught you about the Fifth Council and how it clarified Chalcedon?
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: jnorm888 on January 01, 2010, 07:08:05 PM
Rafa999,




How old are you? How do we know you're not just a kid? Maybe someone older from the COE should explain their "official" view. Maybe someone from the city of Chicago. I think the COE Patriarch or Catholicos lives there.













ICXC NIKA
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Rafa999 on January 01, 2010, 07:09:35 PM
The COE rejects all councils after Chalcedon. No "clarifications" please, We believe in what the council said period. Its quite clear that the two natures of the Messiah are completely separate with NO intermingling whatsoever. Anything aside from that is Monophysitism. Also, the initial reason the COE disagreed with the council was because Cyril managed to bribe thew phrase "Mother of God" into it. However, the COE is signing agreements with Rome, the EO and OO that it agrees with Chalcedon in essence.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Salpy on January 01, 2010, 07:10:49 PM
Further, Theodore of Mopsuestia is a PILLAR of the Antiochan tradition, he is a Saint and I will defend his Christology. Cyril is not a Saint in the COE- his "anathema" means nothing to us. The Peshitta speaks of lord and LORD, there is a distinction.

Again, just to clarify:  When you say, "the Peshitta speaks of lord and LORD, there is a distinction," are you saying that to explain Theodore's use of two different sets of pronouns when writing about Christ and the Word of God?  Also, are you saying that "lord" refers to Christ and "LORD" refers to the Word of God?
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Salpy on January 01, 2010, 07:13:31 PM
The COE rejects all councils after Chalcedon. No "clarifications" please, We believe in what the council said period. Its quite clear that the two natures of the Messiah are completely separate with NO intermingling whatsoever. Anything aside from that is Monophysitism. Also, the initial reason the COE disagreed with the council was because Cyril managed to bribe thew phrase "Mother of God" into it. However, the COE is signing agreements with Rome, the EO and OO that it agrees with Chalcedon in essence.

So obviously you don't accept the EO's fifth council.  But what have you been taught by the COE about Chalcedon?  Do you realize that the EO's would disagree with you if you were to say that Chalcedon supports your Christology?
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Rafa999 on January 01, 2010, 07:14:48 PM
The apostles in the Peshitta refer to Christ as "my Lord" Christ refers to his Father as "My LORD". Thus whenever we speak of the Father we Just Say "MarYah" which is a contraction of the Divine name while if we speak of Christ we say "Mar Eshua" or "Meshikha Eshua". That's all.

As for the EOs disagreeing, it doesn't matter because we don't accept any councils AFTER Chalcedon to "clarify" it, much like the EO dont accept the filioque clause or other innovations.

By the way I'll try to invite a Qasha of the COE here to explain the official COE stance. Try speaking to Deacon Paul Younan at Peshitta.org, he works for the Catholicos in Chicago.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Salpy on January 01, 2010, 07:21:14 PM
Also, the initial reason the COE disagreed with the council was because Cyril managed to bribe thew phrase "Mother of God" into it.

Which council are you referring to?  St. Cyril was not alive at the time of Chalcedon.

Quote
However, the COE is signing agreements with Rome, the EO and OO that it agrees with Chalcedon in essence.

I think the COE has only signed agreements with Rome.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Rafa999 on January 01, 2010, 07:22:25 PM
I mean his followers, pardon me. The only reason the COE didn't agree immediately with Chalcedon was because of that phrase and some of the wording.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: ialmisry on January 01, 2010, 07:23:53 PM
Further, Theodore of Mopsuestia is a PILLAR of the Antiochan tradition, he is a Saint and I will defend his Christology. Cyril is not a Saint in the COE- his "anathema" means nothing to us. The Peshitta speaks of lord and LORD, there is a distinction.

Again, just to clarify:  When you say, "the Peshitta speaks of lord and LORD, there is a distinction," are you saying that to explain Theodore's use of two different sets of pronouns when writing about Christ and the Word of God?  Also, are you saying that "lord" refers to Christ and "LORD" refers to the Word of God?

Just as an aside: the distinction is one made between a human lord and the Lord God, and it is not unique to Aramaic Syriac (where it is mara and marya).  Arabic has sayyid and rabb.  IIRC the Coptic distinction is neb and chois. In written Greek is is between Kyrios written out and KC i.e. nomina sacra abbreviation. Sort of like lord versus LORD, or god versus God.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Rafa999 on January 01, 2010, 07:24:28 PM
Yes Isa is correct. Also we should perhaps remember that his disciples didn't know that Jesus was MarYah only after the resurrection or after the transfiguration.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Nazarene on January 01, 2010, 07:26:12 PM
Rafa999,

How old are you? How do we know you're not just a kid?

I'm beginning to suspect this too.

Maybe someone older from the COE should explain their "official" view. Maybe someone from the city of Chicago. I think the COE Patriarch or Catholicos lives there.

ICXC NIKA

Paul Younan, the COE Deacon I quoted is from Chicago, perhaps we should try to get him here.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Rafa999 on January 01, 2010, 07:27:22 PM
I'm in my mid-twenties. We can Get Deacon Paul here, he will confirm what I said. Theodore is a Saint and Pillar of the COE we agree with his Christology. In fact I just quoted Deacon Paul :angel:
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Salpy on January 01, 2010, 07:28:06 PM
I mean his followers, pardon me. The only reason the COE didn't agree immediately with Chalcedon was because of that phrase and some of the wording.


At Chalcedon, the main follower of St. Cyril was St. Dioscoros, and I don't think he had much influence there.  Do you have anything to back up your allegation that language about the "Mother of God" made its way into Chalcedon as a result of St. Cyril's followers paying bribes?
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Rafa999 on January 01, 2010, 07:29:43 PM
I'll get the documents. It shouldn't be too hard, after all I proved earlier on Cyril got his church into the equivalent of one million dollars debt for Ephesus (via his letters which detailed the bribes). His followers would be even more unscrupulous. If I am correct Dioscorus openly had a mistress too, which would make him somebody unfit for signing holy edicts.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Salpy on January 01, 2010, 07:33:29 PM
By the way, Rafa, I want you to know that I appreciate your staying with us on this topic here.  I know this isn't easy, with all of us verbally jabbing at you.  I know for my part, I am doing this only because I am genuinely curious about the COE.  I bear no animosity toward you or your Church.  I just have a lot of questions.  I think I told you a few days ago that you were being a good sport, and I still mean it.   :)
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Rafa999 on January 01, 2010, 07:34:38 PM
Of course Salpy. We are all Brothers here, you think this is quarreling? You haven't seen me quarrel  ;D
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Salpy on January 01, 2010, 07:39:23 PM
 :D
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: minasoliman on January 01, 2010, 07:47:28 PM
If I am correct Dioscorus openly had a mistress too, which would make him somebody unfit for signing holy edicts.

A Copt, like myself, would say you are incorrect.  Dioscorus is a saint in our Church, and a "confessor" which means he receives sub-martyr status.

I think allegations like this are just made for character assassination of a person one might not like.  You don't see me saying Theodore or Nestorius having mistresses.  I don't know where you get your information from, but this idea of having a mistress has never even crossed Chalcedonians' minds of old times who have considered Diosocorus a "hater of God."
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: ialmisry on January 01, 2010, 07:47:41 PM
Of course Salpy. We are all Brothers here, you think this is quarreling? You haven't seen me quarrel  ;D
Actually, Salpy is a sister. But I second her thoughts.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: minasoliman on January 01, 2010, 07:49:44 PM
I want to add to Salpy and Isa's thoughts that I personally want to believe that the Assyrian Church has Orthodox beliefs.  So I am trying to understand and give the benefit of doubt as best as possible.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: ialmisry on January 01, 2010, 07:50:59 PM
Yes Isa is correct. Also we should perhaps remember that his disciples didn't know that Jesus was MarYah only after the resurrection or after the transfiguration.

No, Kepha Shimon bar Yona knew before. But, then, according to Christ, he had inside information.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Salpy on January 01, 2010, 07:58:08 PM

If I am correct Dioscorus openly had a mistress too, which would make him somebody unfit for signing holy edicts.

Whoa!  This was added after I made my statement about being a good sport.  Please be respectful of other people's saints, even if you don't like them.  I've never heard that allegation about St. Dioscorus, and I'd like you to please refrain from such character assassination.  It's just not necessary. 
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: ialmisry on January 01, 2010, 08:21:39 PM

If I am correct Dioscorus openly had a mistress too, which would make him somebody unfit for signing holy edicts.

Whoa!  This was added after I made my statement about being a good sport.  Please be respectful of other people's saints, even if you don't like them.  I've never heard that allegation about St. Dioscorus, and I'd like you to please refrain from such character assassination.  It's just not necessary. 
There is plenty of criticism in EO circles on Pope Dioscoros, but I don't recall ever hearing such a rumor.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Rafa999 on January 01, 2010, 08:57:25 PM
Regardless, he beat to death Flavian Bishop of Constantinople. I will prove Dioscoros committed adultery besides murder.


By the way, I found the declaration between the Pope of Rome and the Pope of Alexandria, here it is:

Quote
Common Declaration:
------------------
In May 1973 H.H. Pope-Shenouda III of Alexandria visited H.H. Pope Paul VI of
Rome. Their Common Declaration says:
        
       We confess that our Lord and God and Savior and King of us all,
       Jesus  Christ,  is perfect  God  with  respect to His divinity,
       perfect man  with respect to His humanity. In Him His divinity
       is united  with His humanity  in a  real, perfect union without
       mingling, without  commixtion, without  confusion, without
       alteration, without division, without separation.



This seems orthodox to me. Its the same that was signed in the 1994 agreement with the COE. So what's the deal, why are you guys talking about "mingling" and co-mixture between the Divine nature and the human nature? Maybe the word "division" is the key. You  guys think that the COE believes in two persons.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: ialmisry on January 01, 2010, 09:24:39 PM
Regardless, he beat to death Flavian Bishop of Constantinople. I will prove Dioscoros committed adultery besides murder.


By the way, I found the declaration between the Pope of Rome and the Pope of Alexandria, here it is:

Quote
Common Declaration:
------------------
In May 1973 H.H. Pope-Shenouda III of Alexandria visited H.H. Pope Paul VI of
Rome. Their Common Declaration says:
        
       We confess that our Lord and God and Savior and King of us all,
       Jesus  Christ,  is perfect  God  with  respect to His divinity,
       perfect man  with respect to His humanity. In Him His divinity
       is united  with His humanity  in a  real, perfect union without
       mingling, without  commixtion, without  confusion, without
       alteration, without division, without separation.



This seems orthodox to me. Its the same that was signed in the 1994 agreement with the COE. So what's the deal, why are you guys talking about "mingling" and co-mixture between the Divine nature and the human nature? Maybe the word "division" is the key. You  guys think that the COE believes in two persons.
Pope Paul says Dei Genetrix, Pope Shenouti Macnouti: would you say "Yaldath Alaha?"
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Rafa999 on January 01, 2010, 09:28:06 PM
Isa, its no problem for me to say that The Virgin Mary gave birth to the Messiah who is MarYah, but his humanity. The divinity cannot be given birth to. Right?
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Orthodox11 on January 01, 2010, 09:35:23 PM
Isa, its no problem for me to say that The Virgin Mary gave birth to the Messiah who is MarYah, but his humanity. The divinity cannot be given birth to. Right?

The Virgin Mary is not the originator of the divine nature of Christ, she was only the originator of His humanity. However, she did give birth to the Incarnate Logos, who was both human and divine, and it is therefore not only acceptable, but necessary to call her Theotokos (Birthgiver of God).
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Salpy on January 01, 2010, 10:05:01 PM
Regardless, he beat to death Flavian Bishop of Constantinople. I will prove Dioscoros committed adultery besides murder.

You mean the same Flavian who was still alive six months after his murder?

http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,3669.0.html
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: ialmisry on January 01, 2010, 10:15:02 PM
Regardless, he beat to death Flavian Bishop of Constantinople. I will prove Dioscoros committed adultery besides murder.

You mean the same Flavian who was still alive six months after his murder?

http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,3669.0.html


I was afraid that argument was going to rear its head.  Let's deal with the adultery allegation first, as no else, EO or OO, seems to have heard of it before.  Then we can go retread paths.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Salpy on January 01, 2010, 10:22:07 PM
I have no desire to retread paths, or beat anymore dead horses.  However, a saint of my Church has been insulted, and I'm defending him.  You know how I am about that.  Out of all the saints who get insulted on this forum, Dioscorus has to be the most often and thoroughly maligned.  I haven't reported Rafa's comments to the moderator of this board, as I tend to want to deal with people like this myself; however I have no doubt that if this particular round of St. Dioscorus bashing goes too far, either I or someone else will ask PeterTheAleut to kick this tangent into the private forum, so I and others can deal with it with our gloves off, so to speak.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: PeterTheAleut on January 01, 2010, 10:24:53 PM
I'll get the documents. It shouldn't be too hard, after all I proved earlier on Cyril got his church into the equivalent of one million dollars debt for Ephesus (via his letters which detailed the bribes).
No, you didn't prove anything about St. Cyril, so don't get so uppity with us.  All you did was offer evidence to suggest that your accusation against St. Cyril wasn't just something you concocted.  The believability of what you offered as evidence, however, is still very much debatable.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Rafa999 on January 01, 2010, 10:27:19 PM
Well, a letter detailing who he sent bribes to in Constantinople signed by his own hand seems pretty conclusive to me. Regardless, I'm sorry for offending anybody on the Saints issue. Sorry for saying Dioscorus was an adulterer without proof, I actually confused him with somebody else during the council of Chalcedon who was an Eutyches supporter. My apology.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: PeterTheAleut on January 01, 2010, 10:29:42 PM
Well, a letter detailing who he sent bribes to in Constantinople signed by his own hand seems pretty conclusive to me.
But as I have already said at least once, maybe more, is that I don't care what's conclusive to you if you can't prove it to us.  In a debate, WE are the persons you need to convince, not yourself.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Rafa999 on January 01, 2010, 10:30:17 PM
I can't doubt my lying eyes as Groucho Marx once said. The letter is there...
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Salpy on January 01, 2010, 10:32:30 PM
Sorry for saying Dioscorus was an adulterer without proof, I actually confused him with somebody else during the council of Chalcedon who was an Eutyches supporter. My apology.

Thank you for admitting your mistake, Rafa.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: PeterTheAleut on January 01, 2010, 10:33:25 PM
I can't doubt my lying eyes as Groucho Marx once said. The letter is there...
But what about trying to convince US?
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: ialmisry on January 01, 2010, 10:33:42 PM
Well, a letter detailing who he sent bribes to in Constantinople signed by his own hand seems pretty conclusive to me.
But as I have already said at least once, maybe more, is that I don't care what's conclusive to you if you can't prove it to us.  In a debate, WE are the persons you need to convince, not yourself.

I can't doubt my lying eyes as Groucho Marx once said. The letter is there...
I know we have seen a summary of the letter, but have we seen the actual text?  St. Cyril hardly needed to bribe anyone, as he had the support of Pulcheria, but then again he brought the monk mob.  St. John had already complained about gifts flowing to the capital, so I question how much the list can be conisdered "bribes."
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Rafa999 on January 01, 2010, 10:35:25 PM
Because he asked for "favors" in the letter. So they are not gifts but bribes. Case Closed.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: PeterTheAleut on January 01, 2010, 10:41:35 PM
Well, a letter detailing who he sent bribes to in Constantinople signed by his own hand seems pretty conclusive to me. Regardless, I'm sorry for offending anybody on the Saints issue. Sorry for saying Dioscorus was an adulterer without proof, I actually confused him with somebody else during the council of Chalcedon who was an Eutyches supporter. My apology.
Apology accepted...  However, I need to represent the administration of this forum and not just my own personal feelings by reminding you of my warning to not launch character assassinations against EO/OO/RC saints without any evidence to back up your claims.  (Please see my warning in THIS post (http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,9572.msg388515.html#msg388515).)  Any more attempts to slander our saints will incur disciplinary action against you, to include formal warnings, post moderation, or muting.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Salpy on January 02, 2010, 02:45:13 AM
I have to admit that up until now I never read anything by Theodore of Mopsuestia.  My curiosity was sparked by Mina's excerpt, however, so I pulled up Theodore's Commentary on the Nicene Creed.  I found other passages where he seemed to refer to Christ and the Word with separate pronouns.  I also found this:



"Chapter VIII.
In the last days we spoke gradually and sufficiently to your love of the doctrine concerning Christ, according to the teaching of our blessed Fathers. It behoves you now to remember the things spoken to you with so much care. They gave us a two-fold teaching concerning Christ our Lord according to the meaning of the Books, that He is not God alone nor man alone, but He is truly both by nature, that is to say God and man: God the Word who assumed, and man who was assumed. It is the one who was in the form of God that took upon Him the form of a servant,221 and it is not the form of a servant that took upon it the form of God. The one who is in the form of God is God by nature, who assumed the form of a servant, while the one who is in the form of a servant is the one who is man by nature and who was assumed for our salvation.

The one who assumed is not the same as the one who was assumed nor is the one who was assumed the same as the one who assumed, but the one who assumed is God while the one who was assumed is a man. The one who assumed is by nature that which God the Father is by nature, as He is God with God, and He is that which the one with whom He was, is, while the one who was assumed is by nature that which David and Abraham, whose son and from whose seed He is, are by nature. This is the reason why He is both Lord and Son of David: Son of David because of His nature, and Lord because of the honour that came to Him. And He is high above David His father because of the nature that assumed Him. |83 "

http://patristicpage.blogspot.com/2008_12_01_archive.html

---------------------------------------------


Wow.  I wonder if the "He is...Lord because of the honour that came to Him" is sort of what the  President/Office of the President analogy in the catechism was all about.  
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Rafa999 on January 02, 2010, 02:50:31 AM
The COE is not adoptionist/Appolinarian if that is what your worried about.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Salpy on January 02, 2010, 04:14:44 AM
Actually, I always had trouble telling the difference between Adoptionism and the Christology which is identified with Theodore.  I know there's a difference, it's just that the two of them seem very similar to me.

If you read through the eighth chapter of Theodore's Commentary on the Nicene Creed, it's filled with things that seem pretty objectionable to me as an OO.  Is it consistent with what you understand the Christology of the COE to be?
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: minasoliman on January 02, 2010, 04:24:17 AM
What's amazing is that nowhere can I find in St. John Chrysostom's writings thus far is similar to the way Theodore of Mopsuestia wrote.  It's as if even though both were taught by the same teacher, both came out learning differently.

I know St. Cyril rejected Diodore's writings as well.  I would like to read what Diodore wrote as well.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: ozgeorge on January 02, 2010, 04:27:39 AM
Isa, its no problem for me to say that The Virgin Mary gave birth to the Messiah who is MarYah, but his humanity. The divinity cannot be given birth to. Right?
The Messiah is both Human and Divine, and is therefore God. It follows that the Vigin Mary is the Theotokos (God-Birther). If she is not the Theotokos then the Messiah is not God. She did not give birth to "part" of Jesus of Nazareth, she gave birth to Him entirely, therefore, unless Jesus of Nazareth is not God, she gave birth to God. Persons are born, not just Natures.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: witega on January 02, 2010, 04:54:13 AM
What's amazing is that nowhere can I find in St. John Chrysostom's writings thus far is similar to the way Theodore of Mopsuestia wrote.  It's as if even though both were taught by the same teacher, both came out learning differently.

I know St. Cyril rejected Diodore's writings as well.  I would like to read what Diodore wrote as well.

Checking, it appears, we don't have any definite survivals of Diodore's own writings?

Do we know if St. Cyril's attitude toward Diodore was expressed before or after his meeting with John of Antioch and their production of the Formula of Reunion? St. Cyril seems to have begun from a position that was suspicious of the entire Antiochian school, but he came to realize that while their terminology did not always fit well with the preferred Alexandrian terminology, it was not inherently heretical. As St. John Chrysostom and the Formula show, there were fully Orthodox Christians who used the Antiochian (Diodorean?) terminology to express the same understanding of the Incarnation as St. Cyril himself.

However, there were others, like Nestorius and Theodore, who started from the same point as St. John and John of Antioch but then pushed out in another direction, introducing new (and wrong) understandings of the original terminology. Diodore's thought may be suspicious because he was Theodore's original instructor--but most heretics started off with Orthodox instructors. Arius was formed in the Alexandrian church that St. Athanasius was, and Eutyches thought he was coming straight out of the Alexandrian school.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: minasoliman on January 02, 2010, 05:04:24 AM
Perhaps the word "person" is a bit too much to understand in Assyrian language.

But perhaps instead of using the word "person," let's use the word "who."  How many "who's" are there in Christ?  We believe there is "one who."  In other words, I point my finger at the center and subject of acting and willing and say this is He, the Who who lived before the ages and reigns forever, at the same time the Who who was born of the Virgin Mary.  This "Who" we call the Logos, the Son of God, Who is God by nature.  This Who is also the Son of Man through Mary.  Since this Who is God the Logos Incarnate, it is fitting indeed to call the Virgin Mary Theotokos, because the Who who she gave birth to is indeed God in the flesh.

When I read Theodore of Mopsuestia, I have a sense he doesn't believe in "one Who" but "two Who's," the Logos the Son of God and the Son of Man Jesus, in one Christ act, a union of honor, not a union where the subject of action is one.  It bothers me to read something like "Jesus is a man who had the Logos dwelling in Him."  That's no different than me, Mina, who is a man who has the Holy Spirit dwelling in me.  That's "two who's" or in EO/OO understand, two persons.  This is the "Nestorianism" we condemn.

God bless.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: minasoliman on January 02, 2010, 05:30:44 AM
What's amazing is that nowhere can I find in St. John Chrysostom's writings thus far is similar to the way Theodore of Mopsuestia wrote.  It's as if even though both were taught by the same teacher, both came out learning differently.

I know St. Cyril rejected Diodore's writings as well.  I would like to read what Diodore wrote as well.

Checking, it appears, we don't have any definite survivals of Diodore's own writings?

Do we know if St. Cyril's attitude toward Diodore was expressed before or after his meeting with John of Antioch and their production of the Formula of Reunion? St. Cyril seems to have begun from a position that was suspicious of the entire Antiochian school, but he came to realize that while their terminology did not always fit well with the preferred Alexandrian terminology, it was not inherently heretical. As St. John Chrysostom and the Formula show, there were fully Orthodox Christians who used the Antiochian (Diodorean?) terminology to express the same understanding of the Incarnation as St. Cyril himself.

However, there were others, like Nestorius and Theodore, who started from the same point as St. John and John of Antioch but then pushed out in another direction, introducing new (and wrong) understandings of the original terminology. Diodore's thought may be suspicious because he was Theodore's original instructor--but most heretics started off with Orthodox instructors. Arius was formed in the Alexandrian church that St. Athanasius was, and Eutyches thought he was coming straight out of the Alexandrian school.

What's interesting though is that his work/teachings go un-criticized until after his death, whereas Arius and Eutyches were alive when they were condemned.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Deacon Lance on January 02, 2010, 12:20:19 PM
Perhaps the word "person" is a bit too much to understand in Assyrian language.

But perhaps instead of using the word "person," let's use the word "who."  How many "who's" are there in Christ?  We believe there is "one who."  In other words, I point my finger at the center and subject of acting and willing and say this is He, the Who who lived before the ages and reigns forever, at the same time the Who who was born of the Virgin Mary.  This "Who" we call the Logos, the Son of God, Who is God by nature.  This Who is also the Son of Man through Mary.  Since this Who is God the Logos Incarnate, it is fitting indeed to call the Virgin Mary Theotokos, because the Who who she gave birth to is indeed God in the flesh.

When I read Theodore of Mopsuestia, I have a sense he doesn't believe in "one Who" but "two Who's," the Logos the Son of God and the Son of Man Jesus, in one Christ act, a union of honor, not a union where the subject of action is one.  It bothers me to read something like "Jesus is a man who had the Logos dwelling in Him."  That's no different than me, Mina, who is a man who has the Holy Spirit dwelling in me.  That's "two who's" or in EO/OO understand, two persons.  This is the "Nestorianism" we condemn.

God bless.

But the consistently say they do not believe in two persons, two whos, etc.  To me it is a different approach and emphasis.  The Orientals seek to emphasize the unity of the person in the union and to that end can seem to ignore the distinction of divine and human in Christ.  On the otherhand the Assyrians seek to emphasize the unconfused natures of the union to protect the idea that Christ is 100% divine and 100% human and to that end can seem to ignore the unity of the person.  To this Chalcedonian both sides can lend themselves to erroneous interpretation, although I think both sides believe as I do, in one Lord Jesus Christ who is 100% God and 100% Man.



Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Tzimis on January 02, 2010, 12:29:09 PM
Perhaps the word "person" is a bit too much to understand in Assyrian language.

But perhaps instead of using the word "person," let's use the word "who."  How many "who's" are there in Christ?  We believe there is "one who."  In other words, I point my finger at the center and subject of acting and willing and say this is He, the Who who lived before the ages and reigns forever, at the same time the Who who was born of the Virgin Mary.  This "Who" we call the Logos, the Son of God, Who is God by nature.  This Who is also the Son of Man through Mary.  Since this Who is God the Logos Incarnate, it is fitting indeed to call the Virgin Mary Theotokos, because the Who who she gave birth to is indeed God in the flesh.

When I read Theodore of Mopsuestia, I have a sense he doesn't believe in "one Who" but "two Who's," the Logos the Son of God and the Son of Man Jesus, in one Christ act, a union of honor, not a union where the subject of action is one.  It bothers me to read something like "Jesus is a man who had the Logos dwelling in Him."  That's no different than me, Mina, who is a man who has the Holy Spirit dwelling in me.  That's "two who's" or in EO/OO understand, two persons.  This is the "Nestorianism" we condemn.

God bless.
I would think that a person with the holy spirit in them is receiving god is his energies rather than in substance but in the case of god the person is the substance.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Nazarene on January 02, 2010, 12:37:29 PM
Actually I am expressing my Church's Christology correctly-The Divinity does not have Flesh and blood in the conventional way you and I do. It is Spirit.

Let's see. I as a human being have a body, soul and spirit. I have blood but this blood is in my body not my soul or my spirit. But because it's my body, the blood in the body is, well mine.

Of course God who is Spirit does not have blood - naturally. But when He united humanity to Himself this included a human body which has blood (otherwise it wouldn't be human). By uniting humanity to His divinity (without mixing them to form a new nature) He was claiming that human body, soul and spirit as His, and therefore the blood within that body as His. What's your opinion of this?

Nor is Mary Mother of God. If she gave birth to Christ's divinity, she would in fact be his grandmother not mother.

Quote from: Paul Younan
Quote from: Spyridon
Does the Assyrian Church of the East recognize Mary as Theotokos?

We do not use the term ourselves, although we do not object to others using it. If we were to use a Greek term, which we normally don't, we would prefer the term "Christo-Tokos", since the message is more complete.

Allow me to explain.

The strictest sense of the Greek term "Theo-tokos", literally "Bearer of God" or "God-bearer", we feel can be misinterpreted easily. We have no objection to the idea that Mary is "Christo-tokos", if by "Christos" we mean both God and Man in one Person of Messiah.

So the term "Theotokos" can be used in what we would consider an orthodox way, albeit with a great deal of explanation.

In summary, we all agree Messiah is at once God and Man in one Person.

The term "Theotokos" literally meaning "bearer of God", while not a false statement, we feel is really incomplete. "Christotokos" is a more complete term, since by "Christos" all orthodox churches understand is meant both God and Man in one Person. So our preference is not because "Theotokos" is a false statement, but that "Christotokos" is much more accurate and complete. Nestorius explains this in his book.

+Shamasha

PS - Since we really don't use Greek, the nearest equivalent in Aramaic would be "Yaldath-Alaha" which sounds really, really harsh to a Semitic ear (much harder than the English or Greek.) "YLD" is a Semitic root which carries the meaning of having originated something. Of course, no one originated God. So in Aramaic it's much more complicated than the innocent-enough sounding Greek term.

I am not a monophysite

Neither is anyone else here.

or a miaphysite: there is no intermingling of the two natures.

Miaphysitism is not Monophysitism. Miaphysites do not believe that there's intermingling of the 2 natures either. I would say that Miaphysitism interwinds the 2 natures instead of intermingles them. If you take a blue rope and a red rope you can twist them together to form a single rope but the two ropes that are interwinded together remain the the same 2 ropes - blue and red. That's what Miaphysitism means: "1 from 2" much like the Hebrew word ekhad as in "besar ekhad" (one flesh), the 2 become 1 but at the same time remain 2.

They are completely separate.

But united in the parsopa of Meshikha.

Clay and Iron do not mix. The Prophet Isaiah taught so,

Actually it was the Prophet Daniel who said that.

Jesus taught so, the COE teaches so. Nor does God have blood, nor can he be begotten by a human being, nor can the divinity suffer like a human being, or else the universe stops.

Do you really deny that God Incarnate (not God pre-incarnate) suffered in the flesh (not in the spirit)? If yes you're really are the first COE member I've come across to do this.

All I want is people here to confess that the two natures of the Messiah retained their distinction and were not corrupted or destroyed.


All RCs, EOs and OOs confess this.

I'm inclined to agree with what Salpy wrote here:

I'm afraid Mar Odisho, who wrote the pearl, seems in your first link to be misrepresenting what we believe, just as you have been.  We don't believe that either the human or divine natures were destroyed or corrupted.  If you don't want us to misrepresent your beliefs, it would be nice if you stopped misrepresenting ours.   :)

How about we all check our preconceived misconceptions at the door and start over?

Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Nazarene on January 02, 2010, 12:46:01 PM
But the consistently say they do not believe in two persons, two whos, etc.  To me it is a different approach and emphasis.  The Orientals seek to emphasize the unity of the person in the union and to that end can seem to ignore the distinction of divine and human in Christ.  On the otherhand the Assyrians seek to emphasize the unconfused natures of the union to protect the idea that Christ is 100% divine and 100% human and to that end can seem to ignore the unity of the person.  To this Chalcedonian both sides can lend themselves to erroneous interpretation, although I think both sides believe as I do, in one Lord Jesus Christ who is 100% God and 100% Man.

I agree with you 100% though I would word it slightly differently in that the OOs emphasize union to the extent that it overshadows distinction between the natures, while the Assyrians emphasize distinction between the natures to the extent that it overshadows union. But the point is despite this the Assyrians do believe that the natures are united and the OOs do believe that the natures are distinct. These things are just harder to see than in Chalcedonian Christology, but if you are willing to look hard enough you'll see that they are there.

Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: minasoliman on January 02, 2010, 01:22:55 PM
Perhaps the word "person" is a bit too much to understand in Assyrian language.

But perhaps instead of using the word "person," let's use the word "who."  How many "who's" are there in Christ?  We believe there is "one who."  In other words, I point my finger at the center and subject of acting and willing and say this is He, the Who who lived before the ages and reigns forever, at the same time the Who who was born of the Virgin Mary.  This "Who" we call the Logos, the Son of God, Who is God by nature.  This Who is also the Son of Man through Mary.  Since this Who is God the Logos Incarnate, it is fitting indeed to call the Virgin Mary Theotokos, because the Who who she gave birth to is indeed God in the flesh.

When I read Theodore of Mopsuestia, I have a sense he doesn't believe in "one Who" but "two Who's," the Logos the Son of God and the Son of Man Jesus, in one Christ act, a union of honor, not a union where the subject of action is one.  It bothers me to read something like "Jesus is a man who had the Logos dwelling in Him."  That's no different than me, Mina, who is a man who has the Holy Spirit dwelling in me.  That's "two who's" or in EO/OO understand, two persons.  This is the "Nestorianism" we condemn.

God bless.

But the consistently say they do not believe in two persons, two whos, etc.  To me it is a different approach and emphasis.  The Orientals seek to emphasize the unity of the person in the union and to that end can seem to ignore the distinction of divine and human in Christ.  On the otherhand the Assyrians seek to emphasize the unconfused natures of the union to protect the idea that Christ is 100% divine and 100% human and to that end can seem to ignore the unity of the person.  To this Chalcedonian both sides can lend themselves to erroneous interpretation, although I think both sides believe as I do, in one Lord Jesus Christ who is 100% God and 100% Man.

I understand the Assyrians may not believe in "two who's," which is why I'm talking not about the Assyrians, but about Theodore of Mopsuestia himself.  I personally haven't read Mar Babai the Great, which is probably the best representation of Assyrian Christology, but Theodore of Mopsuestia needs to be addressed, and in this case, he does sound like he's addressing "two who's" and not just a mere distinction of natures.

If you read the writings of Severus of Antioch, he talks about distinction between the natures so firmly, that he even used a different definition of "hypostasis" just to prove his point, and called the humanity "hypostatic" as well as he divinity.  In other words, a "mia-hypostasis."  Many Chalcedonians have accused Severus as a Nestorian because of this (and a Eutychian for obvious reasons).
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Nazarene on January 02, 2010, 01:34:08 PM
Shalom minasoliman,

Yes I agree that Theodore, Diodore and Nestorius need to be addressed eventually but how about for now we just deal with the COE. Even though they venerate these guys as saints, they consider Mar Babai's Book of Union as the most accurate historical represntation for their Christology. What about what their modern theologians say? And I've already suggested ignoring qnoma at this stage to keep things managable - baby steps. What do you think?
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Salpy on January 02, 2010, 02:12:04 PM
I'm not even remotely an expert in these things, but it's my understanding that Mar Babai took Theodore's Christology and reworked it in language which would be less objectionable to those outside the Antiochene school.  In other words, he kept Theodore's Christology, but reworded it.  I read somewhere that, among other things, he got rid of the "assumed man" language, which is so obviously blasphemous in that Commentary I linked above.

The bottom line, though, from what I understand, is that Theodore's Christology still remains the Christology of the COE, but the language it is currently expressed in is Mar Babai's.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Nazarene on January 02, 2010, 02:30:49 PM
Alright Salpy, then let's explore Mar Babai's work on it's own first and then compare it to the writings of Theodore and Nestorius.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Salpy on January 02, 2010, 03:38:42 PM

Do we know if St. Cyril's attitude toward Diodore was expressed before or after his meeting with John of Antioch and their production of the Formula of Reunion? St. Cyril seems to have begun from a position that was suspicious of the entire Antiochian school, but he came to realize that while their terminology did not always fit well with the preferred Alexandrian terminology, it was not inherently heretical. As St. John Chrysostom and the Formula show, there were fully Orthodox Christians who used the Antiochian (Diodorean?) terminology to express the same understanding of the Incarnation as St. Cyril himself.



It's my understanding that toward the end of his life, St. Cyril wrote against both Theodore and Diodore.  I can't find the work online, though.  ("Contra Diodorum et Theodorum")

How he came to address Diodore's and Theodore's Christology is explained by Fr. McGuckin in his introduction to On the Unity of Christ:

http://www.amazon.com/Unity-Christ-Saint-Cyril-Alexandria/dp/0881411337

On pages 28-29, Fr. McGuckin says that after the Council of Ephesus, the "Syrians" spread the report that "only their synodical meeting had been the true 'Council of Ephesus,' where Cyril's theology had been judged and found false."  He writes further that later, during a pilgrimage to Jerusalem, St. Cyril "was approached by a delegation from Syria who informed him that in large areas of that patriarchate the false report of Ephesus was still in vogue, and that the writings of Diodore and Theodore of Mopsuestia, the teachers of Nestorius, were still held up as the highest theological authorities, as if the condemnation of Nestorius had meant nothing at all."  Fr. McGuckin then goes on to describe how St. Cyril, when he returned to Alexandria, set out to discredit the works of Diodore and Theodore.  He also at that time wrote his masterpiece, On the Unity of Christ.

I'm not sure it would be accurate to say St. Cyril was entirely OK with the Antiochian terminology at this point, notwithstanding the Formula of Reunion.  That was not the impression I had from reading his book.  I don't want to start a tangent on this, though.  It's been discussed before, and I know there are those who would disagree with me on this.   :)

In any event, to answer the question about Diodore, it seems St. Cyril felt his Christology was the same as that of Theodore and Nestorius, and he wrote against him after the time of the Formula of Reunion.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: minasoliman on January 02, 2010, 05:46:03 PM
Shalom minasoliman,

Yes I agree that Theodore, Diodore and Nestorius need to be addressed eventually but how about for now we just deal with the COE. Even though they venerate these guys as saints, they consider Mar Babai's Book of Union as the most accurate historical represntation for their Christology. What about what their modern theologians say? And I've already suggested ignoring qnoma at this stage to keep things managable - baby steps. What do you think?

Sure, let's start with Mar Babai.  Do you know of any writings online or published in books that I can buy?  What would you recommend for me to read by Mar Babai?
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Salpy on January 02, 2010, 06:07:38 PM
I think you'd be looking for Mar Babai's Book of Union.  I can't find it anywhere online though, not even for sale.  I think it is in the Book of Union that he formulated the Christology used by the COE today, including the language that was discussed earlier, such as "two qnome," etc.  

I would think that if anyone would have it, it would be Gorgias Press:

http://www.gorgiaspress.com/bookshop/default.aspx

I don't see it there, though.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Nazarene on January 02, 2010, 08:13:02 PM
Shalom minasoliman,

Yes I agree that Theodore, Diodore and Nestorius need to be addressed eventually but how about for now we just deal with the COE. Even though they venerate these guys as saints, they consider Mar Babai's Book of Union as the most accurate historical represntation for their Christology. What about what their modern theologians say? And I've already suggested ignoring qnoma at this stage to keep things managable - baby steps. What do you think?

Sure, let's start with Mar Babai.  Do you know of any writings online or published in books that I can buy?  What would you recommend for me to read by Mar Babai?

I personally don't own Mar Babai's book either but the quote from it I posted here (which I got from another site) is from a work titled:

Fourth Memra, Book of the Union, Published by Corpus Scriptorum Christianorum Orientalium, Paris, 1915, A.
Vaschalde, ed.

So this is what we need to look for. Perhaps Rafa knows someone who who'll know how to obtain it. Maybe Internet Archive will have it.

Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Rafa999 on January 02, 2010, 08:30:40 PM
I'm searching. Tough because we don't have his complete works translated, large fragments in many places, but the whole book. Will try...
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Nazarene on January 02, 2010, 08:43:53 PM
I'm searching. Tough because we don't have his complete works translated, large fragments in many places, but the whole book. Will try...

Whatever you can find.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Rafa999 on January 02, 2010, 08:48:02 PM
We need Shamasha Paul here. He can answer all questions,  and quote all of Theodore and Babai's writings from his head to anybody on this forum.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Nazarene on January 03, 2010, 02:04:40 PM
Shalom all,

Since we haven’t gotten hold of Mar Babai’s Book of Union as of yet, I’m searching for any quote from it that I can find by googling the key words “kyana”, “qnoma” and “parsopa”. I’ve managed to find quite a few other sources relevant to the topic from  this page. (http://wanweihsien.wordpress.com/2008/12/16/broken-words-from-a-broken-body/) Chief of these is Prof. Sebastian Brock’s book Fire from Heaven (http://books.google.com/books?id=Ey_FW7acTycC&dq=Fire+from+Heaven+Sebastian+Brock&printsec=frontcover&source=bl&ots=N9OBvjmKX1&sig=6O3tmTycjro3NyGf--HnlHfpabg&hl=en&ei=fYpAS_y0IZOA4Qbwp6mqCA&sa=X&oi=book_result&ct=result&resnum=1&ved=0CAcQ6AEwAA#v=onepage&q=&f=false), which I sure references Mar Babai. Here are some excerpts from this book:

Quote
The Greek term hypostasis is represented in Syriac by the word qnoma, which has a much wider range of meanings than the Greek has. When the Church of the East uses qnoma in connection with ‘nature’ it usually speaks of ‘the two natures and their qnomas‘, where qnoma means something like ‘individual manifestation’: a qnoma is an individual instance or example of a kyana (which is understood as always abstract), but this individual manifestation is not necessarily a self-existent stance of a kyana. Thus, when the Church of the East speaks of two qnome in the incarnate Christ, this does not have the same sense as two hypostaseis, where hypostasis does have the sense of self-existence. Unfortunately some European translators have confused the issue more by perniciously rendering qnoma as ‘person’, as if the underlying term was parsopa (i.e. Greek prosopon), thus implying that the Church of the East believed that there were two persons in Christ, in other words the classic definition of ‘Nestorianism’ (whether or not Nestorius actually taught this, however, is disputed, and even if he did, then what he really meant by this terminology is far from clear). (Fire from Heaven, 6-7)

These words of his can then illuminate this critique of Chalcedon written by the Catholicos of the Church of the East, Isho’yahb II (628-46):

Quote
Although those who gathered at the Synod of Chalcedon were clothed with the intention of restoring the faith, yet they too slid away from the true faith: owing to their feeble phraseology, wrapped in an obscure meaning, they provided a stumbling block to many. Although, in accordance with the opinion of their own minds, they preserved the true faith with the confession of the two natures, yet by their formula of one qnoma, it seems, they tempted weak minds. As an outcome of the affair a contradiction occurred, for with the formula ‘one qnoma‘ they corrupted the confession of ‘two natures’; while with the ‘two natures’ they rebuked and refuted the ‘one qnoma’. So they found themselves standing at a cross roads, and they wavered and turned aside from the blessed ranks of the orthodox, yet they did not join the assemblies of the heretics; they both pulled down and built up, while lacking a foundation for their feet. On what side we should number them I do not know, for their terminology cannot stand up, as Nature and Scripture testify: for in these, many qnome can be found in a single ‘nature’, but that there should be various ‘natures’ in a single qnoma has never been the case and has not been heard of. (Quoted in Fire from Heaven, 2)

Compare what Isho’yahb II said about Chalcedon with what Mar Odisho said about it in Marganitha:

Quote
…This Council confirmed the confession, that there are TWO KYANE in Christ each distinct in its attributes, and also TWO WILLS, and anathematized all who should speak of mixture, which destroys the TWO KYANE. But because in Greek there is no distinction between QNOMA and PARSOPA, they confessed but ONE QNOMA in Christ. And when the party of Cyril was not satisfied with the expression “TWO KYANE”, and the party of Nestorius with the expression “ONE QNOMA” an imperial edict was issued declaring all who did not consent to this doctrine degraded from their orders. Some were made to submit through compulsion; but the remainder maintained their own opinions.

Christianity thus became divided into three confessions; the first confessing ONE KYANE and ONE QNOMA in Christ, which is held by the Copts, Egyptians, and Abyssinians, after the tradition of Cyril their Patriarch; and this is called the Jacobite sect, from a certain Suryaya doctor called Jacob who laboured zealously to spread the doctrines of Cyril among the Suryaye and the Armenians.

The Second sect are those who confess the doctrine of TWO KYANE and ONE QNOMA in Christ, and these are called “Malkaye” (Royalists) because it was imposed forcibly by the king. This is the doctrine which is received by the Romans called Franks, and by the Constantinopolitans who are Greeks and by all the northern peoples such as the Russians, Alani, Circassians, Assai, Georgians and their neighbours. But the Franks differ from the rest of these in maintaining that the Holy Spirit proceeds from the Father and the Son, and in their use of unleavened bread for the Eucharist. These two sects also accepted the appelation “Mother of God”; but the Jacobites have added to the canon; “Holy God”, etc., “who was crucified for us.”

The Third confession which professes in Christ TWO KYANE, TWO QNOME, ONE WILL, ONE SONSHIP, ONE AUTHROTIY; is called Nestorian. As to the Easterners, however, because they would not change their true faith, but kept it as they received it from the Apostles, they were unjustly styled “Nestorians”, since Nestorius was not their Patriarch, neither did they understand his language; but when they heard that he taught the doctrine of the TWO KYANE and TWO QNOME, ONE WILL, ONE SON OF GOD, ONE CHRIST, and that he confessed the orthodox faith, they bore witness to him, because they themselves held the same faith. Nestorius, then, followed them, and not they him, and that more especially in the matter of the appelation “Mother of Christ”. Therefore when called upon to excommunicate him, they refused, maintaining that their excommunication of Nestorius would be equivalent to their excommunication of the Sacred Scriptures and the holy Apostles, from which they received what they professed, and for which we are censured together with Nestorius, as shall appear in the following chapters.

Marganitha, Part III, Chapter IV: On the Differing Sects

Brock goes on to say that, in the days of Isho’yahb II, the Church of the East “had for the most part adopted the formula of two natures and two qnome, but one prosopon, in the incarnate Christ”, taking care to note that qnoma was not simply the equivalent of the Greek hypostasis.

Brock also cites this interesting liturgical text of the Church of the East:


Quote
[The Word] …having lowered himself to humility in order to raise up our fallen state to the exalted rank of his divinity, and in the person of the “hostage” he took from us (i.e. his humanity), he associated us in the glory of his majesty’. (Fire from Heaven, 10)

What I see in the above hymn is a celebration of what we would call “the hypostatic union”, rather than a mere conjunction of the two natures in the Person of Christ...

...A note about the use of the term “hostage” in the hymn I cited: Professor Brock takes care to note in the same essay that the term hymara is used in the older sense, i.e. to refer to someone who is given as a surety rather than one who has been seized by violence. For those who are interested in pursuing this theme further, his essay entitled ‘Christ “the hostage”: A theme in East Syriac liturgical tradition and its origins’ has also been reprinted in Fire from Heaven. This book is a virtual treasure trove as far as I’m concerned!

As for the title “Theotokos”:

With respect to the title “Theotokos”, Brock suggests in his essay that, since this title was not widely-used within the boundaries the Roman Empire prior to the Christological controversies, its initial omission from the liturgical tradition of the Church of the East might not have been for theological (“Nestorian”) reasons. After all, the Church of the East existed outside the boundaries of Rome. In the wake of the controversies, the term “Theotokos” became polemically-charged because of its espousal by the Alexandrine school, so it is understandable that the Antiochene Church of the East would reject it (somewhat reactionary, I suppose). This omission is often interpreted as a Nestorian move on the part of the Church of the East, but could it have been more Antiochene than properly Nestorian in motivation? Would you grant that this is a possible explanation?

When Rabban bar Sawma, a COE monk went to Rome this exchange took place:

Quote
“The Cardinals said unto him, “How dost thou believe? Recite thy belief, article by article.” RABBAN SAWMA replied to them, saying:

“I believe in One God, hidden, everlasting, without beginning and without end, Father, and Son, and Holy Spirit: Three Persons, coequal and indivisible; among Whom there is none who is first, or last, or young, or old: in Nature they are One, in Persons they are three: the Father is the Begetter, the Son is the Begotten, the Spirit Whom there is none who is first, or last, or young, or old: in Nature they are One, in Persons they are three: the Father is the Begetter, the Son is the Begotten, the Spirit proceedeth. “In the last time one of the Persons of the Royal Trinity, namely the Son, put on the perfect man, Jesus Christ, from MARY the holy virgin; and was united to Him Personally (parsopaith), and in him saved (or redeemed) the world. In His Divinity He is eternally of the Father; in His humanity He was born [a Being] in time of MARY; the union is inseparable and indivisible for ever; the union is without mingling, and without mixture, and without compaction. The Son of this union is perfect God and perfect man, two Natures (keyanin),and two Persons (kenomin)–one parsopa.”

And:

Quote
Some writers on Nestorianism assert that the Nestorian Church was reconciled to Rome in the year 1304, and others deny it, but as a matter of fact there is good reason to believe that in that year Mar Yahbh Allaha III did write a letter at Masaghah to Pope Benedict XI in which he stated his creed in detail. As far as I know the text of the letter, which may have been written either in Syriac ‘or Mongolian, has never been published, but a Latin version, of it is extant, and has been printed by Mosheim… He, provided that we can be sure that the Latin translations are correct, and that they were made from a genuine letter of his, says…

Quote
We also confess that at the end of the ages one of the Divine Persons—the one that is, that we compared to the sun’s ray or to the Divine Word—vested himself with a perfect humanity from the Virgin Mary for our salvation and in order to show to us the light of truth; and (that) he was united, the divinity to the humanity and the humanity to the divinity, inseparably and without end. And this is our faith in our Lord Jesus Christ, our God, who is perfect God and perfect man in one Person, entirely beside the Father and entirely in (His) Mother. And, from that very hour when from the annunciation was made from God, through the archangel Gabriel, to the Virgin Mary concerning the Son who was to be born, and it was said to her “Hail, Full of Grace, the Lord is with thee”, etc. (Lk 1.28), from thence onward the divinity departed not from the humanity, neither on the Cross nor in the tomb, although (this happened) in such a way that the divinity was incapable of suffering, or of dying, or of bearing any penalty”.

Salpy & PTA, is this the kind of confession you were asking for?

Mar Babai’s Teshbokhta:

Quote
One is Meshikha the Son of God,
Worshiped by all in two kyane;
In His divinity begotten of the Father,
Without beginning before all time;
In His humanity born of Mary,
In the fullness of time, in a body united;
Neither His divinity is of the kyana of the mother,
Nor His humanity of the kyana of the Father;
The kyane are preserved in their qnome,
In one parsopa of one Sonship.
And as the Godhead is three qnome in one kyana,
Likewise the Sonship of the Son is in two kyane, one parsopa.
So the Holy Church has taught.

And finally: An Exposition of The Mysteries (Mar Narsai, 437 AD):

Quote
He was laid in a manger and wrapped in swaddling clothes, as Man;
and the watchers extolled Him with their praises, as God.
He offered sacrifices according to the Law, as Man;
and He received worship from the Persians, as God.
Simeon bore Him upon his arms, as Man;
and he named Him 'the Mercy' who showth mercy to all, as God.
He kept the Law completely, as Man;
and He gave His own new Law, as God.

He was baptized in Jordan by John, as Man;
and the heaven was opened in honour of His baptism, as God.
He went in to the marriage-feast of the city of Canna, as Man;
and He changed the water that it became wine, as God.
He fasted in the wilderness forty days, as Man;
and watchers descended to minister unto Him, as God.
He slept in the boat with His disciples, as Man;
and He rebuked the wind and calmed the sea, as God.

He set out and departed to a desert place, as Man;
and He multiplied the bread and satisfied thousands, as God.
He ate and drank and walked and was weary, as Man;
and He put devils to flight by the word of His mouth, as God.
He prayed and watched and gave thanks and worshipped, as Man;
and He forgave debts and pardoned sins, as God.
He asked water of the Samaritan woman, as Man;
and He revealed and declared her secrets, as God. 

He sat at meat in the Pharisee's house, as Man;
and He forgave the sinful woman her sins, as God.
He went up into the mountain of Tabor with His disciples, as Man;
and He revealed His glory in their sight, as God.
He shed tears and wept over Lazarus, as Man;
and He called him that he came forth by His mighty power, as God.
He rode upon a colt and entered Jerusalem, as Man;
and the boys applauded Him with their Hosannas, as God. 

He drew nigh to the fig-tree and shewed that He was hungered, as Man;
and His mighty power caused it to wither on a sudden, as God.
He washed the feet of His twelve, as Man;
and He called Himself Lord and Master, as God.
He ate the legal passover, as Man;
and He exposed the treachery of Iscariot, as God.
He prayed and sweated at the time of His passion, as Man;
and He scared and terrified them that took Him, as God. 

The attendants seized Him and bound His hands, as Man;
and He healed the ear that Simon cut off, as God.
He stood in the place of judgement and bore insult, as Man;
and He declared that He is about to come in glory, as God.
He bore His Cross upon His shoulder, as Man;
and He revealed and announced the destruction of Zion, as God.
He was hanged upon the wood and endured the passion, as Man;
and He shook the earth and darkened the sun, as God.

Nails were driven into His body, as Man;
and He opened the graves and quickened the dead, as God.
He cried out upon the Cross 'My God, My God,' as Man;
and promised Paradise to the thief, as God.
His side was pierced with a spear, as Man;
and His nod rent the temple veil, as God.
They embalmed His body and He was buried in the earth, as Man;
and He raised up His temple by His mighty power, as God.

He remained in the tomb three days, as Man;
and the watchers glorified Him with their praises, as God.
He said that He had received all authority, as Man;
and He promised to be with us for ever, as God.
He commanded Thomas to feel His side, as Man;
and He gave them the Spirit for an earnest, as God.
He ate and drank after His resurrection, as Man;
and He ascended to the height and sent the Spirit, as God.

Whether it was “as God” or “as Man” the point is it was always “He” so there you go minasoliman, for the COE there is (as I far as I can tell, always been) only one “Who”.

If I find anything else I'll be sure to post it.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Salpy on January 03, 2010, 06:43:15 PM
The statements above basically sever the acts of Christ into two sets:  Those done by God and those done by man.  It's less obviously "two Who's" than the Commentary by Theodore, but it is still subject to that interpretation.  From what I read in Theodore's Commentary, I believe he would sign on to what is printed above.

That's the problem with the "He did ______ as God, and He did ______ as man" language.  Theodore used it and it can be interpreted in a Theodorean manner.  That is why Cyril condemned in his fourth anathema assigning different acts to either Christ the man or to God the Word.  That is why the OO's have never felt comfortable with the Tome of Leo.

What is unambiguously "one Who" is saying "God the Word suffered in the flesh."  That is "one Who."  Saying St. Mary is the Mother of God without Theodorean-sounding qualifiers like we saw in the catechism, is also "one Who."

The thing with Babai is that, from what I have heard and read, he reworded Theodore's Christology to make the "two Whos" less obvious, but it is still basically based on Theodore's Christology.  Babai, from what I understand, rejected the phrase "God the Word suffered in the flesh."  What he wrote above to me is still subject to a "two Who's" interpretation.

I don't know.  Maybe I'm over-thinking this.  I've noticed that the EO's have stopped commenting and that Deacon Lance thinks the stuff quoted over the past couple of days sounds Orthodox.  Maybe this stuff is good enough for the Chalcedonians.  Maybe it should be good enough for the OO's too.  I don't think so, though.  I don't think the OO's would sign onto this, and I have my doubts as to whether the EO's would.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Nazarene on January 03, 2010, 06:49:32 PM
Shalom Salpy, it's OK to have doubts. I'm not done yet, we can probe deeper into this. I'm glad though that you're willing to accept the possibility that you could be overthinking this. BTW what is your opinion of Mar Yahbh Allaha III's letter, translated from Latin?
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: ialmisry on January 03, 2010, 07:13:58 PM
The statements above basically sever the acts of Christ into two sets:  Those done by God and those done by man.  It's less obviously "two Who's" than the Commentary by Theodore, but it is still subject to that interpretation.  From what I read in Theodore's Commentary, I believe he would sign on to what is printed above.

That's the problem with the "He did ______ as God, and He did ______ as man" language.  Theodore used it and it can be interpreted in a Theodorean manner.  That is why Cyril condemned in his fourth anathema assigning different acts to either Christ the man or to God the Word.  That is why the OO's have never felt comfortable with the Tome of Leo.

What is unambiguously "one Who" is saying "God the Word suffered in the flesh."  That is "one Who."  Saying St. Mary is the Mother of God without Theodorean-sounding qualifiers like we saw in the catechism, is also "one Who."

The thing with Babai is that, from what I have heard and read, he reworded Theodore's Christology to make the "two Whos" less obvious, but it is still basically based on Theodore's Christology.  Babai, from what I understand, rejected the phrase "God the Word suffered in the flesh."  What he wrote above to me is still subject to a "two Who's" interpretation.

I don't know.  Maybe I'm over-thinking this.  I've noticed that the EO's have stopped commenting and that Deacon Lance thinks the stuff quoted over the past couple of days sounds Orthodox.  Maybe this stuff is good enough for the Chalcedonians.  Maybe it should be good enough for the OO's too.  I don't think so, though.  I don't think the OO's would sign onto this, and I have my doubts as to whether the EO's would.
No, I think the EO should have problems with it.  For one thing, it keeps the COE et alia squeamish about the term Theotokos.  The terminology still retains reservations about the union in one God the Word.  And that can't be just explained by the Semitic speech or the Roman border: the Aramaic/Semitic speakers in Palestine and Syria had no problem with Yaldath Alaha, nor did the Armenians, Georgians, Nubians, Ethiopians and Yeminites (the last two also Semites), who lived outside of Rome's control.

The Ecumenical Councils had representatives from all of Christendom.  They conducted their business in Greek.  Even if Syriac refined its terminology (assumed for the sake of argument), it does not have the stamp of universal authority: it is basically a monologue.  The qnoma/parsopa distinction, for instance, I don't see as clarifying anything, but introducing a concept for no purpose (at least in our understanding).
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Nazarene on January 04, 2010, 10:42:18 AM
PTA am I allowed to quote snippets from the private threads? There's just something there that I wanted to address here.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: PeterTheAleut on January 04, 2010, 11:21:47 AM
PTA am I allowed to quote snippets from the private threads? There's just something there that I wanted to address here.
If you mean to quote posts from our private forum here on this public thread, such defeats our purpose for having a private forum, so we don't permit this.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Nazarene on January 04, 2010, 12:48:57 PM
OK, though I wasn't planning to quote an entire post just a statement (which is in no way inflamatory) in the form of a snippet. But no worries I'll look for a similar statement elsewhere.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: witega on January 04, 2010, 01:22:05 PM
I don't know.  Maybe I'm over-thinking this.  I've noticed that the EO's have stopped commenting and that Deacon Lance thinks the stuff quoted over the past couple of days sounds Orthodox.  Maybe this stuff is good enough for the Chalcedonians.  Maybe it should be good enough for the OO's too.  I don't think so, though.  I don't think the OO's would sign onto this, and I have my doubts as to whether the EO's would.

I can't speak for other but as one of the EO's whose largely stopped commenting, its because the nature of the discussion has become thoroughly confused. As PetertheAleut pointed we have one actual member of the Church of East saying things that are clearly unacceptable from an Orthodox point-of-view, but then we have Deacon Lance and Nazarene, who are not members of the Church of the East or Orthodox, arguing that the Church of the East actually believes something different from what rafa999 is saying. Given my experience with Roman Catholics claiming Orthodox believe this or that, when we don't, and Roman Catholics getting frustrated about what they see as Orthdox mischaracterization of their own beliefs/practices, I'm reluctant to get into that side of the debate.

Then we have the double problem of Mar Babai. Problem one is that apparently the full text of his 'authoritative' book is not available in English (and I don't read Syriac). This makes it extremely difficult to comment on in a general sense--we've been over this in EO and OO discussions. It's not that hard to find an individual passage in OO fathers and go 'ah ha, Monophysite!'; and contrariwise, you can find individual passages in EO fathers 'ah ha, dividing the Natures!', but then if one reads the paragraph before or the paragraph after, it turns out that passage in question needs to be understood in a different sense. Problem two is that since he is no longer in a position to be in or out of communion with, I personally am only tangentially interested in what Mar Babai actually believed. To me the real question is what the current CoE thinks he believed. Nestorius and Eutyches thought the Apostles believed as they did although they were incorrect. So in terms of the present, the essential question is, does what the COE believe that Mar Babai believed coincide with Nestorius or with St. Paul? With Theodore or St. John Chrysostom?

All that said, the excerpt Nazarene posted seems problematic to me. Again, context is relevant, depending on what came before and after, perhaps the structure is pure rhetorical device and it can be understood as Orthodox. But Mar Babai appears to be linguistically avoiding using 2 subjects, while clearly dividing how each thing was done. I.e., this action was 'as a man', this action was 'as a God'. But which actions were 'as a God-man', that is at what point does one simply speak of the actions of the Hypostatic Union? To me this seems different than St. Leo's:
Quote
There enters then these lower parts of the world the Son of God, descending from His heavenly home and yet not quitting His Father’s glory, begotten in a new order by a new nativity.  In a new order, because being invisible in His own nature, He became visible in ours, and He whom nothing could contain was content to be contained. abiding before all time He began to be in time:  the Lord of all things, He obscured His immeasurable majesty and took on Him the form of a servant:  being God that cannot suffer, He did not disdain to be man that can, and, immortal as He is, to subject Himself to the laws of death.  The Lord assumed His mother’s nature without her faultiness:  nor in the Lord Jesus Christ, born of the Virgin’s womb, does the wonderfulness of His birth make His nature unlike ours.  For He who is true God is also true man

St. Leo (and EO's) does distinguish that Jesus Christ died 'because He was a man' and that He rose again 'because He was a God', but there's no sense of alternation. We can (and do) say just as truly that 'Jesus Christ died and rose again'; 'God died and rose again'. For Orthodox, even if the death was possible because of Christ's human nature, it was 'as God and man' that He died. And 'as God and man' that He rose from the dead. And it is that complete identification of the union which seems missing in Mar Babai.
For Mar Babai:
Quote
He was laid in a manger and wrapped in swaddling clothes, as Man;
and the watchers extolled Him with their praises, as God.
For St. Leo
Quote
descending from His heavenly home and yet not quitting His Father’s glory

That is, for Mar Babai: "This was man, then this was God", for Orthodox "this part of the action was because He was man, and this part if because He was God, but this was God-man and then this was also God-man."


A final note on overthinking--it certainly seems possible here. Working through several languages with what are abstract philosophical categories can easily get that way. That's why going all the way back to St. Cyril and Nestorius, the focus always came back to the concrete implications. "Did or did not the Logos dies for us?" "Was the Virgin the Theotokos?" "Did the Son of God have blood?" Unlike hypostatis or kyana, those are concrete questions that don't slip and slide nearly do much depending on what language you're using or the presuppositions of your translator.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: minasoliman on January 04, 2010, 04:29:55 PM
Wow...this is quite a loaded post.  So many new questions now arise in my mind.

1.  Mar Odisho--one will:  What did Mar Odisho, or what does the Assyrian Church mean when they say "one will?"  Or what does the word "will" mean or entail??

2.  hostage/hymara:  That is an interesting concept.  I never seen the union referred like that.  Did Brock talk about other "non-Nestorian" authors that may have used a similar concept?  What did he conclude its origins to be?

3.  Rabban bar Sawma--two persons (kenomin)-one parsopa:  This one is new.  What is the difference between "kenomin" and "parsopa."  The translation here brings them both to persons.  Did he really mean two persons in one person?

4.  Mar Yahbh Allaha III--called Jesus God:  This is interesting.  This is the closest thing to a confession of "Theotokos" I ever got, because he not only called Jesus "our God" but also alluded to "His Mother."  But other confessions seem to shun such language.

5.  Mar Babai/Mar Narsai--did they believe in the communicato idiomatum:  Both of them while may be using "one who" seem to still keep apart the natures of Christ.  Did they believe in the communication of idioms?  In other words, were the properties of the Godhead shared with humanity and vice versa?

God bless.

Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Nazarene on January 04, 2010, 06:08:56 PM
Shalom minasoliman nice to have you back...

Wow...this is quite a loaded post.  So many new questions now arise in my mind.

1.  Mar Odisho--one will:  What did Mar Odisho, or what does the Assyrian Church mean when they say "one will?"  Or what does the word "will" mean or entail??

Yes the COE does teach "one will" and apparently so do the Maronites. Though "one" might not mean one in the exclusive singluar sense. The common Aramaic word for "one" is khad which is the cognate of the Hebrew ekhad which can have a compound meaning. So perhaps "one will" should really be understood as two wills which work together as "one" (i.e. in harmony) in the parsopa, but I don't know which Aramaic word Mar Odisho used here. I'll do some more research and ask around then get back to you.

2.  hostage/hymara:  That is an interesting concept.  I never seen the union referred like that.  Did Brock talk about other "non-Nestorian" authors that may have used a similar concept?  What did he conclude its origins to be?

That quote is Brock's book Fire from Heaven which I haven't read but google books has it here (http://books.google.com/books?id=Ey_FW7acTycC&dq=Fire+from+Heaven+Sebastian+Brock&printsec=frontcover&source=bl&ots=N9OBwkvBVX&sig=j8BCLzMZCqCoSOo6LIicqMTL1-Q&hl=en&ei=t1dCS7XmB8qx4QbmuZiqCA&sa=X&oi=book_result&ct=result&resnum=1&ved=0CAcQ6AEwAA), if you wanna check it out. Go to Chapter 4: Christ "The Hostage": A Theme in the East Syriac Liturgical Tradition and it's Origins. Brock did say that COE understanding of the word hymara corresponds to it's archaic meaning so I'm guessing that the Syrian Orthodox understanding will differ somewhat.

And yes this word hymara occurs in the Peshitta, and the writings of both the East Syrian (Aphrahat & Narsai) and West Syrian (Ephrem & Jacob of Serug) Fathers.

3.  Rabban bar Sawma--two persons (kenomin)-one parsopa:  This one is new.  What is the difference between "kenomin" and "parsopa."  The translation here brings them both to persons.  Did he really mean two persons in one person?

No kenomin is a corruption of qnome, so what Rabban bar Sawma really means is 2 qnome in 1 parsopa (person).

4.  Mar Yahbh Allaha III--called Jesus God:  This is interesting.  This is the closest thing to a confession of "Theotokos" I ever got, because he not only called Jesus "our God" but also alluded to "His Mother."  But other confessions seem to shun such language.

For those who can read Latin here's the original Latin text:

Confitemur etiam quod in fine saeculorum una persona de tribus divinis, illa scilicet quam assimilavimus radio solari vel Verbo Dei, induit perfectam humanitatem de virgine Maria, propter salutem hominum et ut ostenderet nobis lucem veritatis, et fuit unita divinitas humanitati et humanitas divinitati inseparabiliter et sine fine. Et ista est fides nostra in Dominum nostrum, Jesus Christum, Deum nostrum, qui completus est Deus et completus homo in una persona, totus apud Patrem et totus in Matre. Et ab illa hora qua, per Gabrielem archangelum, ex parte Dei virgini Mariae annunciatio facta de filio nascituro, et dictum est ei: Ave gyatia plena, Dominus tecum, etc. [Luke i. 28] ex tunc. divinitas non dimisit humanitatem, nec in cruce nec in sepulchro: ita tamen quod divinitas pati non potuit, nec mori, nec aliquam poenalitatem sustinere.

Source (http://wanweihsien.wordpress.com/2008/12/16/broken-words-from-a-broken-body/).

5.  Mar Babai/Mar Narsai--did they believe in the communicato idiomatum:  Both of them while may be using "one who" seem to still keep apart the natures of Christ.  Did they believe in the communication of idioms?  In other words, were the properties of the Godhead shared with humanity and vice versa?

God bless.

I don't know about them but for the COE, while I can't personally answer this one (I don't have something in writing by them concerning this), I don't see anything in the doctrine of communicato idiomatum that conflicts with their Christology. I doubt that they'll adopt this doctrine for explaining their Christology, but this is not necessarily because they object to it but because they really don't like "prying into Messiah", as Mar Ehpriam puts its. For the Assyrians they are happy to believe that the natures are united but prefer to keep the means of how they are united in the realm of mystery.

God bless.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Nazarene on January 04, 2010, 06:21:53 PM
Some quotes from COE liturgical texts:

From the Khudra:

Quote
One is the Christ, adored by all in two Natures, Who, as touching His Godhead, is begotten of the Father, without beginning, and before all ages; and, as touching His Manhood, was born of Mary, in the fulfilment of time, a body of union. His Godhead is not from the substance of His mother, neither His Manhood from the substance of His Father; but the Natures and Persons* subsist in the one Parsopa of this one Filiation. And as there are in the Godhead three Persons*, One Selfexistent, so the Filiation of the Son is of two Natures and one Parsopa. Thus doth the Holy Church teach us to Confess of the Son, Who is the Messiah. Therefore, O Lord, we worship Thy Divinity and Thy Humanity, without dividing them.

And the Gazza:

Quote
O Virgin, the Holy Spirit found Him in thee, and the Word dwelt in Him by union, without conversion or confusion, the Natures continuing to subsist unchanged, and the Persons* also, by their essential attributes,the Divinity and Humanity subsisting in one Parsopa of Filiation.

*once again qnome got mistranslated as persons

Source (http://wanweihsien.wordpress.com/2008/12/16/broken-words-from-a-broken-body/).

Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Rafa999 on January 04, 2010, 07:23:04 PM
Quote
the Aramaic/Semitic speakers in Palestine and Syria had no problem with Yaldath Alaha, nor did the Armenians, Georgians, Nubians, Ethiopians and Yeminites (the last two also Semites), who lived outside of Rome's control.

That is bogus. Yaldath Alaha sounds very very harsh to a semitic ear, it implies an actual origin of the divinity in Mary unlike the innocent sounding "Theotokos". Also Mother of God is not forbidden in the COE, only its viewed as incomplete unlike "Christotokos" which is complete. The fact of the matter is that everybody in the Middle East believed like the COE (including the Armenians Salpy, we have proof that more Armenians were under the COE Jurisdiction than under any other for the middle ages, Armenia was part of the Persian empire) before a mob of monks managed to curry favor with the Romans, institute two fake councils, and split Antiochan Christianity into two halves.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Papist on January 04, 2010, 07:32:05 PM



A final note on overthinking--it certainly seems possible here. Working through several languages with what are abstract philosophical categories can easily get that way. That's why going all the way back to St. Cyril and Nestorius, the focus always came back to the concrete implications. "Did or did not the Logos dies for us?" "Was the Virgin the Theotokos?" "Did the Son of God have blood?" Unlike hypostatis or kyana, those are concrete questions that don't slip and slide nearly do much depending on what language you're using or the presuppositions of your translator.

Good point. If the COE cannot confess that Mary is that theotokos or that God died and rose for our sins then there is still Nestorianism there. It may be a hidden Nestorianism but it is Nestorianism none the less.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Rafa999 on January 04, 2010, 07:39:18 PM
Your "Nestorianism" is my Orthodoxy, your "orthodoxy" is my monophysitism. But I win because History shows my belief is more ancient unlike yours, especially in the Middle East which is the cradle of the scriptures and civilization. I can show an unbroken chain to my belief up to the Prophet Isaiah who espoused it in Isaiah 11.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Papist on January 04, 2010, 07:43:53 PM
Your "Nestorianism" is my Orthodoxy, your orthodoxy is my monophysitism. But I win because History shows my belief is more ancient unlike yours, especially in the Middle East which is the cradle of the scriptures and civilization. I can show an unbroken chain to my belief up to the Prophet Isaiah who espoused it in Isaiah 11.
First of all this is not about winning, its about following Christ our God. Second, if you can prove it then do it. Really, I don't know how anyone can read the scritpures in the original Greek (not some aramaic translation) and conclude anything other than the Catholic/Orthodox position.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Rafa999 on January 04, 2010, 07:47:57 PM
Oh but I can, because all manuscripts before the fourth century show Messiah not God in Acts 20:28, I have the latin, Antiochan, Greek and Egyptian church fathers quoting my rendering of the scriptures "mysteriously" up to the big Christological controversies post Nicea, and I have a completely independent tradition (that of Indian Christianity, the St.Thomas Christians who were not under Rome or Persia, and who received their teaching from the apostle Thomas directly) citing my rendering of scriptures. I don't need to be an Aramaic primacist to win this argument.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Papist on January 04, 2010, 07:48:34 PM
Oh but I can, because all manuscripts before the fourth century show Messiah not God in Acts 20:28, I have the latin, Antiochan, Greek and Egyptian church fathers quoting my rendering of the scriptures "mysteriously" up to the big Christological controversies post Nicea, and I have a completely independent tradition (that of Indian Christianity, the St.Thomas Christians who were not under Rome or Persia, and who received their teaching from the apostle Thomas directly) citing my rendering of scriptures.
Isa, can you respond to this?
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Rafa999 on January 04, 2010, 07:55:56 PM
Oh, and Further, the Patriarchs of Constantinople (Chysostom) and of Rome ( Pope Evaristus (107), Anicetus (168), John V (687) ) to name just a few were often trained by Church of the East Theologians. Should I respect the Masters or the students? Should I mix the new wine into the good old wine, accept spurious new teachings over ancient ones ?
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Papist on January 04, 2010, 07:57:33 PM
Oh, and Further, the Patriarchs of Constantinople (Chysostom) and of Rome ( Pope Evaristus (107), Anicetus (168), John V (687) ) to name just a few were often trained by Church of the East Theologians. Should I respect the masters or the students? Should I mix the new wine into the good old wine, accept spurious new teachings over ancient ones ?
Not important. What is important is the Orthodoxy of their confessions. Who speaks the truth?
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Papist on January 04, 2010, 07:58:27 PM
"The word became fleshs and dwelt among us." -The Gospel of John
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Rafa999 on January 04, 2010, 07:58:50 PM
The older teaching always speaks the truth:

Quote
But even if we, or an angel from heaven, should preach to you a gospel contrary to what we have preached to you, he is to be accursed!

Galatians 1:8
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Papist on January 04, 2010, 07:59:04 PM
Rafa, do you believe that Jesus is God?
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Papist on January 04, 2010, 08:00:16 PM
The older teaching always speaks the truth:

Quote
But even if we, or an angel from heaven, should preach to you a gospel contrary to what we have preached to you, he is to be accursed!

Galatians 1:8
The older teaching does indeed. But there is no reason for me to believe that your Church teaches the older teaching. St. Ignatius of Antioch referrs to Christ enough times for me to be convinced that the Catholic and Orthodox Churches teach the truth on this matter.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Rafa999 on January 04, 2010, 08:01:57 PM
Quote
the Peshitta reads:ܘܡܠܬܐ ܒܤܪܐ ܗܘܐ ܘܐܓܢ ܒܢ which literally is "Word-the Flesh-the he-was and-he-abided/rested in/by-us

Citing Isa. The word DWELT with us, he did not become us. BIG difference. Of course I believe Jesus is God, I just dont believe his divinity was destroyed, corrupted, or changed. St.Ignatius would support my Christology.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: minasoliman on January 04, 2010, 08:04:10 PM

Quote
O Virgin, the Holy Spirit found Him in thee, and the Word dwelt in Him by union, without conversion or confusion, the Natures continuing to subsist unchanged, and the Persons* also, by their essential attributes,the Divinity and Humanity subsisting in one Parsopa of Filiation.


Okay.  Understanding that the word "persons" is a mistranslation, this is still an example of "two who's," no?  The Holy Spirit "found Him in thee" and the Word "dwelt in Him."  This isn't the Word "becoming man" or "incarnate," this is the Word sharing a life with someone else by the help of the Holy Spirit "finding Him."  This "other-than-Word Him" is what is troublesome.  I mean what happened to this particular liturgical rendering of what was born from the Virgin can happen practically to anyone.  Indeed, the Holy Spirit has found many saints, and the Word continually dwells in us through the Eucharist.

Tell me the word "Him" is also a mistranslation.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Papist on January 04, 2010, 08:04:45 PM
Quote
the Peshitta reads:ܘܡܠܬܐ ܒܤܪܐ ܗܘܐ ܘܐܓܢ ܒܢ which literally is "Word-the Flesh-the he-was and-he-abided/rested in/by-us

Citing Isa. The word DWELT with us, he did not become us. BIG difference. Of course I believe Jesus is God, I just dont believe his divinity was destroyed, corrupted, or changed.
First don't give me an aramaic translation. Give me the original koine greek in which the gospel of John was written. Second I am not emphasizing his dwelling with us. I am emphasizing that the word became flesh. Third, none of us belives that the Divinity was destroyed, corrupted, or changed so stop with the straw-man arguements.
Finally, did not human nature belong to the Divine person who is God? If so, then everything done by Christ is done by the person of the Logos and yet the Logos remains unchanged.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Papist on January 04, 2010, 08:06:28 PM

Quote
O Virgin, the Holy Spirit found Him in thee, and the Word dwelt in Him by union, without conversion or confusion, the Natures continuing to subsist unchanged, and the Persons* also, by their essential attributes,the Divinity and Humanity subsisting in one Parsopa of Filiation.


Okay...this is an example of "two who's."
Very disturbing.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Rafa999 on January 04, 2010, 08:08:32 PM
The Koine Greek has "Logos" instead of "Miltha"....an equally heavy word! Further Koine Greek is not the original, Papias says the Gospels were written in Hebrew, and knowing that Aramaic and Hebrew both use Ktav Ashurri (Assyrian script) and that Jesus spoke Aramaic as did his audience, I believe he mixed it up with Aramaic (Eusebius the historian made the same mistake, several Church fathers did). So your not finding a way out on this.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Papist on January 04, 2010, 08:10:12 PM
The Koine Greek has "Logos" instead of "Miltha"....an equally heavy word! Further Koine Greek is not the original, Papias says the Gospels were written in Hebrew, and knowing that Aramaic and Hebrew both use Ktav Ashurri (Assyrian script) and that Jesus spoke Aramaic as did his audience, I believe he mixed it up with Aramaic. So your not finding a way out on this.
No, Papia says that Matthew was written in the language of the Jews. One gospel and it is not clear if he is referring to Hebrew or Aramaic.
Now does the greek say that the Logos became flesh? Once again, I am asking about the word "became".
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Rafa999 on January 04, 2010, 08:12:06 PM
So you believe satan preserved the quran but that God was unable to preserve his Words?
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: minasoliman on January 04, 2010, 08:13:48 PM

Quote
O Virgin, the Holy Spirit found Him in thee, and the Word dwelt in Him by union, without conversion or confusion, the Natures continuing to subsist unchanged, and the Persons* also, by their essential attributes,the Divinity and Humanity subsisting in one Parsopa of Filiation.


Okay...this is an example of "two who's."
Very disturbing.

Sorry Papist, I wrote more than that....I'm addicted to the modify button...lol....but nevertheless, yes, I agree.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Papist on January 04, 2010, 08:14:28 PM
So you believe satan preserved the quran but that God was unable to preserve his Words?
Firstly, I hight doubt that there is a perfectly accurate manuscript of the Koran lying around anywhere. Second, what does that have to do with the fact that the New Testament was written in Greek and not aramaic?
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Papist on January 04, 2010, 08:15:46 PM

Quote
O Virgin, the Holy Spirit found Him in thee, and the Word dwelt in Him by union, without conversion or confusion, the Natures continuing to subsist unchanged, and the Persons* also, by their essential attributes,the Divinity and Humanity subsisting in one Parsopa of Filiation.


Okay...this is an example of "two who's."
Very disturbing.

Sorry Papist, I wrote more than that....I'm addicted to the modify button...lol....but nevertheless, yes, I agree.
Its really frightening because if the COE really accepts two "whos" in Christ, then I am not sure how they can be considered Christians :( This theology completely destroys Christ's uniqueness.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Rafa999 on January 04, 2010, 08:16:09 PM
Quote
Firstly, I hight doubt that there is a perfectly accurate manuscript lying around anywhere. Second, what does that have to do with the fact that the New Testament was written in Greek and not aramaic?

Because it wasn't written in Greek. Papias says that at a minimum one of the Gospels was written in Hebrew (Ktav Ashurri script). So you are saying we lost the scriptures. Satan preserved the quran while God lost his scriptures, satan is more powerful than God more generous to his servants. I cannot believe that.

The COE does not believe in two "whos" we will meet Jesus Christ on judgement day, what else do you want me to confess?
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Papist on January 04, 2010, 08:17:34 PM
Quote
Firstly, I hight doubt that there is a perfectly accurate manuscript lying around anywhere. Second, what does that have to do with the fact that the New Testament was written in Greek and not aramaic?

Because it wasn't written in Greek. Papias says that at a minimum one of the Gospels was written in Hebrew (Ktav Ashurri script). So you are saying we lost the scriptures. Satan preserved the quran while God lost his scriptures, satan is more powerful than God more generous to his servants. I cannot believe that.
One book was written in Hebrew. Just one. That does not mean that scriptures are not preserved and the Koran is. You reasoning is a bit loopy.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Rafa999 on January 04, 2010, 08:18:54 PM
So we lost the original Hebrew/Aramaic scripture? Are you saying God allowed this treasure to be lost while the quran and vedas are preserved in Arabic/Sanscrit?
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Papist on January 04, 2010, 08:20:05 PM
So we lost the original Hebrew/Aramaic scripture? Are you saying God allowed this treasure to be lost while the quran and vedas are preserved in Arabic/Sanscrit?
Regardless of what language the scriptures were written in there are not perfect manuscripts of either the Bible or the Koran in existence. I am not sure why you think that this means the word of God was lost.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Papist on January 04, 2010, 08:20:44 PM
How do we even know that Papias was right about the Gospel of Matthew?
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Rafa999 on January 04, 2010, 08:21:29 PM
Because Papias knew the Apostles and their associates directly. He is ancient and apostolic beyond all shadow of a doubt. Further his testimony is corroborated by Hegesippus, Origen, and others.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Papist on January 04, 2010, 08:22:29 PM
Because Papias knew the Apostles and their associates directly. He is ancient and apostolic beyond all shadow of a doubt.
So he says that one gospel was written in Aramaic. There is nooooooo historical or texual reason to believe that the Gospel of John was written in Aramaic.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Papist on January 04, 2010, 08:22:59 PM
Again, does the Greek say that the word became flesh?
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Rafa999 on January 04, 2010, 08:24:24 PM
It says "Logos" which cannot be rendered as such.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: minasoliman on January 04, 2010, 08:25:56 PM
The COE does not believe in two "whos" we will meet Jesus Christ on judgement day, what else do you want me to confess?

Then how do you explain your own church's liturgical text Nazarene quoted?  What other "Him" was born of the Virgin that the Holy Spirit found and the Word dwelt in since it wasn't the Word Himself?
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Papist on January 04, 2010, 08:26:40 PM
It says "Logos" which cannot be rendered as such.
what about "became"? Is that word in the text?
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Rafa999 on January 04, 2010, 08:28:05 PM
Quote
Then how do you explain your own church's liturgical text Nazarene quoted?  What other "Him" was born of the Virgin that the Holy Spirit found and the Word dwelt in since it wasn't the Word Himself?

The Divine nature, the pre-incarnate word crafted from the Virgin a Temple to dwell in. The Messiah was one unified "Parsopa" but the divinity never suffered or was begotten just like Pope Leo said in his Tome. That's all. If at any one moment you say that the Word changed you agree with Eutyches and that is another gospel. Period.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: minasoliman on January 04, 2010, 08:30:19 PM
Quote
Then how do you explain your own church's liturgical text Nazarene quoted?  What other "Him" was born of the Virgin that the Holy Spirit found and the Word dwelt in since it wasn't the Word Himself?

The Divine nature, the pre-incarnate word crafted from the Virgin a Temple to dwell in. The Messiah was one unified "Parsopa" but the divinity never suffered just like Pope Leo said in his Tome. That's all. If at any one moment you say that the Word changed you agree with Eutyches and that is another gospel. Period.

You didn't answer the question.  The Temple had a pronoun, a separate "who" from the Word.  The Word dwelt in "Him," not in "it" or "human nature" or "temple" but Him.  Doesn't that even bother you personally, you who doesn't believe in two who's?
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Papist on January 04, 2010, 08:31:19 PM
Quote
Then how do you explain your own church's liturgical text Nazarene quoted?  What other "Him" was born of the Virgin that the Holy Spirit found and the Word dwelt in since it wasn't the Word Himself?

The Divine nature, the pre-incarnate word crafted from the Virgin a Temple to dwell in. The Messiah was one unified "Parsopa" but the divinity never suffered or was begotten just like Pope Leo said in his Tome. That's all. If at any one moment you say that the Word changed you agree with Eutyches and that is another gospel. Period.
No one said that the Divine Nature was every changed.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: ozgeorge on January 04, 2010, 08:44:38 PM
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Then how do you explain your own church's liturgical text Nazarene quoted?  What other "Him" was born of the Virgin that the Holy Spirit found and the Word dwelt in since it wasn't the Word Himself?

The Divine nature, the pre-incarnate word crafted from the Virgin a Temple to dwell in. The Messiah was one unified "Parsopa" but the divinity never suffered just like Pope Leo said in his Tome. That's all. If at any one moment you say that the Word changed you agree with Eutyches and that is another gospel. Period.

You didn't answer the question.  The Temple had a pronoun, a separate "who" from the Word.  The Word dwelt in "Him," not in "it" or "human nature" or "temple" but Him.  Doesn't that even bother you personally, you who doesn't believe in two who's?
Do you understand what Minasoliman is asking Rafa999? The Word (Logos) is a person- ie, He is a "Him". If you say that the Messiah is "one unified Parsopa", then what is it that you are saying has been united in this Parsopa? Is it the Human and Divine Natures? If so, then the Two Natures are united in Him. He (The Parsopa of Christ) does not "dwell in" the Natures, rather, the Natures are united in Him- ie in His Parsopa.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Rafa999 on January 04, 2010, 08:48:52 PM
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everything done by Christ is done by the person of the Logos and yet the Logos remains unchanged.

You said that. This is the Orthodox belief of the COE, the person (COE does not say person, only for your understanding) of the Logos, the human nature offered itself as a Qurbana on the cross to the Father, while the divinity dwelling within the Messiah did not change at any instant. The Prophet Malachi says God cannot change (Malachiu 3:6, see also Psalm 102:25, 90:2, and Micah 5:2, James 1:17). We are not Muslims therefore we must accept plain scripture instead of kicking around the bush. The Messiah was resurrected by the Holy Spirit, and he in his glorified form as the ascended Logos is about to judge all humanity. God NEVER "became" anything, that is Eutychianism.

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If you say that the Messiah is "one unified Parsopa", then what is it that you are saying has been united in this Parsopa? Is it the Human and Divine Natures? If so, then the Two Natures are united in Him. He (The Parsopa of Christ) does not "dwell in" the Natures, rather, the Natures are united in Him- ie in His Parsopa

Yes, two natures united in one parsopa but 100% seperate. God is not a person much like a goldfish isn't one. God Lives, God Exists, God Saves... That I agree with. No mingling of the two natures at any point. The COE does not like this "prosopic union" idea espoused by Greeks (by poor Nestorius who tried defending Semitic belief in Constantinople the best he could), better to talk about Qnome. There is a reason not that much of Theodore and Babai's writings haven't been translated, you simply need to learn Syriac.

Do you understand now? Maybe this is the problem, that the COE considers the idea of a "prosopic" union somewhat inexact. You cannot talk of the "Person of God". You can talk about the nature (Kyana) of God, or the individuated instance of a nature (Qnome) but not the person of God.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: ozgeorge on January 04, 2010, 09:04:20 PM
Yes, united in one parsopa but 100% seperate. That I agree with. No mingling of the two natures at any point. The COE does not like this "prosoponic union" idea espoused by Greeks (by poor Nestorius who tried defending Semitic belief in Constantinople the best he could), better to talk about Qnome.
You missed the point. The point is that you are saying that the Logos (Word) "dwelt in" the Human Nature, but this in incorrect since the Natures are united IN Him. You seem to be identifying the Logos (Word) with the Divine Nature, as though the Divine Nature somehow "dwelt in" a human body. The instant you start talking about the Person of the Word "dwelling in" something you are committing the fallacy of the homunculus (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Homunculus_argument), that you somehow "dwell inside" your body. A Human Person is a unified whole- Body, soul, mind, will etc. A Divine Person is also a Unified Whole. Jesus of Nazareth was one Person Who is both Divine and Human, not  "a Divine Person dwelling in a human person", nor "a Divine Person dwelling in a human body", as though His Human body was simply a vehicle.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Rafa999 on January 04, 2010, 09:06:18 PM
Read above. I did not say the divinity was ever a person.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: ozgeorge on January 04, 2010, 09:10:38 PM
Read above. I did not say the divinity was ever a person.
So there is no such thing as a Divine Person in your Church?
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Rafa999 on January 04, 2010, 09:13:32 PM
Again I invoke diagram:

(http://dukhrana.com/images/kyana_qnoma_parsopa.gif)

God/Man = Holy Messiah of Israel, the Branch, the Root of David of Isaiah 11.

God-Man = Hercules of Greeks, Pharaoh of ancient Coptic Egypt, Gilgamesh of ancient Assyrians.

Divine/Person= ok

Divine-Person= pagan
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: ozgeorge on January 04, 2010, 09:16:04 PM
Again I invoke diagram
Nice diagram, but doesn't answer the question.
Is the Holy Trinity Three Persons or not in your Church?
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Rafa999 on January 04, 2010, 09:21:40 PM
The Holy Trinity is 3 Qnume. The Second Qnume is the pre-incarnate Messiah. If you type the Hebrew equivalent of Qnume (Sephiroth) you will see this is an ancient and attested Christology.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: ozgeorge on January 04, 2010, 09:25:46 PM
The Holy Trinity is 3 Qnume. The Second Qnume is the pre-incarnate Messiah. If you type the Hebrew equivalent of Qnume (Sephiroth) you will see this is an ancient and attested Christology.
So Father, Son and Holy Spirit are not Persons in your Church then. Is this correct?
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Rafa999 on January 04, 2010, 09:27:13 PM
They are 3 Qnume. Three in one, but not persons. Can you say with a straight face that God the Father is a person? Would you call a goldfish a person? No that is incorrect. Talk about natures and individuated instances of that nature (Qnome) but the Person thing is foreign to ancient Syriac Christology.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: PeterTheAleut on January 04, 2010, 09:31:38 PM
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Firstly, I hight doubt that there is a perfectly accurate manuscript lying around anywhere. Second, what does that have to do with the fact that the New Testament was written in Greek and not aramaic?

Because it wasn't written in Greek. Papias says that at a minimum one of the Gospels was written in Hebrew (Ktav Ashurri script).
But Papias said nothing about any of the other Gospels regarding their original language, so you cannot correctly cite Papias as saying the Gospels were all written in Aramaic.  If you're going to continue arguing that our traditional account is wrong, you're going to have to prove it by showing where Apostolic Fathers positively asserted that the Gospels of Mark, Luke, and John were written in Aramaic.  What you are doing is taking what Papias said about the Gospel of Matthew and applying it to all the Gospels.  That is simply illogical.

So you are saying we lost the scriptures. Satan preserved the quran while God lost his scriptures, satan is more powerful than God more generous to his servants. I cannot believe that.
No, the Scriptures are preserved in the Church's Holy Tradition, which is the Holy Spirit.  Remember that we never did embrace the heresy of sola scriptura as you so often seem to advocate here.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Rafa999 on January 04, 2010, 09:35:52 PM
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No, the Scriptures are preserved in the Church's Holy Tradition, which is the Holy Spirit.  

Then why do all oral traditions (Roman Catholic, Assyrian, OO, EO, etc.) contradict each other? Tradition does not trump scripture, it is good to CLARIFY scripture, big difference. I am not a Neo-Pharisee.

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What you are doing is taking what Papias said about the Gospel of Matthew and applying it to all the Gospels.  That is simply illogical.

So we lost the original Hebrew/Aramaic Matthew did we ? :o

Satan is more powerful than God, he can preserve the "holy" quran used to fill Constantinople's streets with blood and slay one million Assyrians, but God can't preserve his own WORDS?  ???
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: ialmisry on January 04, 2010, 09:37:16 PM
They are 3 Qnume. Three in one, but not persons. Can you say with a straight face that God the Father is a person?
Yes.
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Would you call a goldfish a person? No that is incorrect. Talk about natures and individuated instances of that nature (Qnome) but the Person thing is foreign to ancient Syriac Christology.
Take a look:
http://thriceholy.net/prosopon.html
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Rafa999 on January 04, 2010, 09:42:04 PM
Let Mar Odisho explain the Holy Trinity for you. I noticed the sun analogy from the Marganitha being used in that website. Further proof the COE taught the Western Church.

Taken from the Book of the Pearl by Mar Odisho:

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CHAPTER V

 On the Trinity

 

Everything that exists must be either a material body whose existence is the subject of accidents and changes, and is acted upon by whatever is opposed to it; or not a body, and consequently not the subject of any of these things. Now, we have already proved, that God (glory be to His incomprehensibility) is not a body and therefore is not subject to anything pertaining to materiality, from which He is infinitely removed. Whatever is immaterial, and not subject to anything appertaining to matter, the traditions of the ancients call Mind. And whatever is exclusive of matter, and of what appertains thereto, must be knowing, and must know himself, because himself is ever present and known to him, and it is not dependent on anything but itself. And whatever knows its essence must be living. Therefore God is Wise and Living. Now, he who is wise discerns because of his wisdom; and he who is living is living because he has life. This is the mystery of the Trinity, which the Church confesses of that Adorable Nature, Mind, Wisdom and Life. Three co-essential properties in One, and One who is glorified in three properties. The Mind (the Church) has called Father and Begetter, because He is the Cause of all, and First. The Son (She) has called Wisdom and Begotten, because He is begotten of the Mind, and by Him everything was made and created. The Life (She) has called, the Holy Spirit and Proceeding, because there is no other Holy Spirit but He. He who is Holy is unchangeable, according to the interpretation of received expositors; and this is that which is declared by John the Divine, the son of Zebedee: “In the beginning was the Word;[4]” and, “the Life is the light of men[5]”. Now in the manner of the soul which is possessed of three-fold energy; mind, word, and life, and is one and not three; even so should we conceive of the THREE IN ONE, ONE IN THREE. The sun also, which is one in its disk, radiance, and heat, is another simile adduced by the second Theologus Paul, the chosen[6] vessel: “He is the brightness of His glory, and the Express Image of His being;[7]” and, again: “Christ, the power of God, and the wisdom[8]of God “. Further, everything that exists is either an accident or a substance. But the Self-existent can in no wise be susceptible of accident. Therefore these three properties are consubstantial and are on this account called (Qnume) hypostasis or substance and not accidental powers, nor do they cause change in the nature of the consubstantial nor plurality; for He is the Mind, the Same He is the Wisdom, the Same He is the Life, Who ever begat without cessation, and puts forth (makes to proceed) without removal from Himself. These things (cessation removal) are infinitely removed from Him for there is no real likeness between created natures and the Nature of the eternally existing and a simile does not in everything resemble that which is compared by it; for then the simile and that which is compared by it would be the thing itself, and we (who have just instituted several comparisons) would not be unlike the man who attempts to compare a thing by the self-same thing. The mystery of the Trinity is expressed in the words of the Old Testament: “Let us make man in our own image, after our likeness;” the occurrence of the letter noon[9]three times in this sentence is an indication of the Trinity. The “Holy” thrice repeated in the seraphic hymn, as mentioned by Isaiah, joined with one “Lord “, attests Three Qnume in One nature. The words of David, also, are of ‘the same import: “By the Word of the Lord were the heavens made, and all the host of them by the breath of His mouth;” and many other like references. Let the heathen, then, and Jews who rail at the truth of the Catholic Church, on account of her faith in the Trinity, be confounded and put to shame. Here endeth the first part.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: ozgeorge on January 04, 2010, 09:42:49 PM
Three in one, but not persons.
Thank you. This is where our different Faiths diverge.

Can you say with a straight face that God the Father is a person?
I most certainly can. God the Father is a Person, God the Son is a Person, and God the Holy Spirit is a Person.

Would you call a goldfish a person?
Well, I'd certainly call it an hypostasis, which is what I also call each of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit. And the Pre-incarnate Logos is the same hypostasis as Jesus of Nazareth.

Talk about natures and individuated instances of that nature (Qnome)  
No thank you. I have no desire to talk about God as some depersonalised "force" or "energy".

the Person thing is foreign to ancient Syriac Christology.
As is apparent.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: ialmisry on January 04, 2010, 09:44:11 PM
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the Aramaic/Semitic speakers in Palestine and Syria had no problem with Yaldath Alaha, nor did the Armenians, Georgians, Nubians, Ethiopians and Yeminites (the last two also Semites), who lived outside of Rome's control.

That is bogus. Yaldath Alaha sounds very very harsh to a semitic ear,

It's supposed to.  God does ordinarily become Human.  Remember, they threw stones at her Son when He said "before Abraham was, I AM."  But as Orthodox believers, nothing sounds sweeter, including to these Semitic ears.


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it implies an actual origin of the divinity in Mary unlike the innocent sounding "Theotokos".

It's the same thing, just in Greek.


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Also Mother of God is not forbidden in the COE, only its viewed as incomplete unlike "Christotokos" which is complete.

If it was complete, Nestorius imposing it wouldn't have been a problem.


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The fact of the matter is that everybody in the Middle East believed like the COE (including the Armenians Salpy, we have proof that more Armenians were under the COE Jurisdiction than under any other for the middle ages, Armenia was part of the Persian empire) before a mob of monks managed to curry favor with the Romans, institute two fake councils, and split Antiochan Christianity into two halves.
No, we have ample proof of Orthodoxy from the earliest times.  And the COE didn't have a jurisdiction: it was an exarchate (catholicos) of Antioch.  Btw, the record shows that the Sassanids had often favored the Miaphysite Orthodox.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: PeterTheAleut on January 04, 2010, 09:45:48 PM
The Holy Trinity is 3 Qnume.
But according to the Assyrian definition of "qnoma", if I understand it correctly, this would essentially declare that the "threeness" of the Trinity is in number only--there are three concrete units in the Trinity, but there is otherwise nothing on the order of distinctive characteristics to distinguish one unit of the Trinity (i.e., the Father) from another (i.e., the Son or the Holy Spirit).

I'm sorry, but this strikes me as being too modalistic for me to think of it as Orthodox, for the Orthodox understanding articulated in Nicea and the Ecumenical Councils that follow is that each of the "qnome" of the Trinity, as you call them, has distinctive characteristics that differentiate them one from another.  The Father begets.  The Son is begotten.  The Holy Spirit proceeds.  As such, we would call "qnoma" far too weak a word to describe each of the three persons of the Holy Trinity.  I think this is where the Greek concept of "hypostasis" becomes a much better definition of how we view the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, since "hypostasis" speaks of those specific properties that distinguish one unit of an ousia/kyana from another.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Rafa999 on January 04, 2010, 09:46:27 PM
Well, the Assyrian Church of the East, being an ancient church does not feel God has a literal "personhood", his person is more abstract. The catechism of the COE clearly states you cannot know the essence of God directly, only via the Messiah our closest point to the most high. Read Mar Odisho's Book. The COE was never under anybody it was always independent, even Pope Nicholas IV of Rome signed a Bull giving it jurisdiction of the entire East, so its too bad you think otherwise Isa.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: ialmisry on January 04, 2010, 09:48:37 PM
Oh but I can, because all manuscripts before the fourth century show Messiah not God in Acts 20:28,

You haven't produced a single manuscript before the second millenium.  I've provided the text from the fourth century that says "God."

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I have the latin, Antiochan, Greek and Egyptian church fathers quoting my rendering of the scriptures "mysteriously" up to the big Christological controversies post Nicea,

The manuscript I've provided predates Constantinople I, before your "Christological controversies."


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and I have a completely independent tradition (that of Indian Christianity, the St.Thomas Christians who were not under Rome or Persia, and who received their teaching from the apostle Thomas directly) citing my rendering of scriptures. I don't need to be an Aramaic primacist to win this argument.

The Mar Toma Christians were not independent: they alternated between Antioch and then Seleucia-Ctesiphon.  And you haven't provided anything from the Mar Thoma Christians as far as I can recall.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: ialmisry on January 04, 2010, 09:49:54 PM
Oh but I can, because all manuscripts before the fourth century show Messiah not God in Acts 20:28, I have the latin, Antiochan, Greek and Egyptian church fathers quoting my rendering of the scriptures "mysteriously" up to the big Christological controversies post Nicea, and I have a completely independent tradition (that of Indian Christianity, the St.Thomas Christians who were not under Rome or Persia, and who received their teaching from the apostle Thomas directly) citing my rendering of scriptures.
Isa, can you respond to this?
Done already (and further up the thread): search Sinaiticus.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: PeterTheAleut on January 04, 2010, 09:50:30 PM
The catechism of the COE clearly states you cannot know the essence of God directly, only via the Messiah our closest point to the most high.
We believe the same, or at least something very similar: we cannot know the essence of God except for what God has revealed to us.  However, we have needed to articulate some of the mystery of what God has revealed of His nature to counter various heresies that have arisen since the time of the Apostles.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: ialmisry on January 04, 2010, 09:53:03 PM
Oh, and Further, the Patriarchs of Constantinople (Chysostom) and of Rome ( Pope Evaristus (107), Anicetus (168), John V (687) ) to name just a few were often trained by Church of the East Theologians. Should I respect the Masters or the students? Should I mix the new wine into the good old wine, accept spurious new teachings over ancient ones ?

The Pharisees asked the same question.

You keep on calling Chysostom a student, where I have already posted the letters where he was the one who guided Thedore, not the reverse.  The Popes you mention were Greek from Syria, and where not in communion or tutelage to the COE.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: ialmisry on January 04, 2010, 09:55:22 PM
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the Peshitta reads:ܘܡܠܬܐ ܒܤܪܐ ܗܘܐ ܘܐܓܢ ܒܢ which literally is "Word-the Flesh-the he-was and-he-abided/rested in/by-us

Citing Isa. The word DWELT with us, he did not become us. BIG difference. Of course I believe Jesus is God, I just dont believe his divinity was destroyed, corrupted, or changed. St.Ignatius would support my Christology.
No, he doesn't (it will have to wait, I've got to leave soon).  You skip the "the Word was Flesh" part, which is the heart of the matter.  The original Greek (and the Greek is the original) is more emphatic on that point.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: ialmisry on January 04, 2010, 09:57:13 PM
The Koine Greek has "Logos" instead of "Miltha"....an equally heavy word! Further Koine Greek is not the original, Papias says the Gospels were written in Hebrew, and knowing that Aramaic and Hebrew both use Ktav Ashurri (Assyrian script) and that Jesus spoke Aramaic as did his audience, I believe he mixed it up with Aramaic (Eusebius the historian made the same mistake, several Church fathers did). So your not finding a way out on this.
Papias says Matthew was written in Hebrew, i.e. in contrast to the other Gospels, written in Greek.  Papias is also informative on St. John in the Greek society of Ephesus.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Rafa999 on January 04, 2010, 09:58:31 PM
The agnus Dei was introduced from Syria, they were all Assyrian. There is no point in searching exceedingly old manuscripts of the COE since it burns its manuscripts whenever they fall in disuse. This is why some of the best manuscripts were brought from the Middle East by Western missionaries, because only newer manuscripts are used. The Genocide of 1915 did not help matters either. We hold the oldest Christian liturgy in use in the ENTIRE world, the Anaphora of Mar Mari and Mar Addai who were disciples of Jesus.

On Papias: he said material was being TRANSLATED. It was his belief that Matthew was in Hebrew, this does not exclude the possibility of more material being in this tongue and being subject to translation.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Rafa999 on January 04, 2010, 09:59:27 PM
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the Peshitta reads:ܘܡܠܬܐ ܒܤܪܐ ܗܘܐ ܘܐܓܢ ܒܢ which literally is "Word-the Flesh-the he-was and-he-abided/rested in/by-us

Citing Isa. The word DWELT with us, he did not become us. BIG difference. Of course I believe Jesus is God, I just dont believe his divinity was destroyed, corrupted, or changed. St.Ignatius would support my Christology.
No, he doesn't (it will have to wait, I've got to leave soon).  You skip the "the Word was Flesh" part, which is the heart of the matter.  The original Greek (and the Greek is the original) is more emphatic on that point.

Caught you Isa, you gave the literal rendering of your own Western Syriac. End of matter.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: ialmisry on January 04, 2010, 10:01:08 PM
So you believe satan preserved the quran but that God was unable to preserve his Words?
No on both counts, but then I've already answered this:
Isa, I like you man. You really are a watchman of the Church keeping an eye out for cunningly devised fables, I really respect that. However you cannot truly believe that only the Greek survived. Are you saying to me that the Muslims can read their Quran in Arabic, the Jews their OT in Hebrew (never mind masoretic corruption later on, they can read it in their script and cultural perspective) but we have to settle for a translaton? Are you saying that the angel of the fiery flame Satan did a better job preserving the Quran than God did preserving HIS scripture? That is totally unfeasible. God allow his words to be destroyed but Satan can preserve the Quran, the Vedas, etc.? No we need to talk more on this...

Actually, I have always believed that because of what you say, Islam, Hinduism etc. and even Judaism are limited, whereas Christianity by its nature is universal, but being bound by a single language.  Even if believed in the primacy of the Peshitta, the OT is still in two other languages, Hebrew and Aramaic.  The Church is spared fundamentalism and literalism by the fact that the Lord's words, with few exceptions, survive only in transaltion.  I believe that is why in part I think the Fathers adopted the LXX, opposed a Hebrew text, besides issues of accuracy.  Btw, I think the Peshitta is somewhat on a par with the Greek Patriarchal Text/textus receptus, as being the expression of the Syriac Orthodox Fathers.

Christ didn't speak Syriac, so the Peshitta doesn't record His very words.  It gives a valuable witness to those words, but how independent is a question.  And then the issue is that St. Paul wrote Greek, as did all the other NT writers except St. Matthew.

It is somewhat like needing the autograph: Muslim belief and Jewish belief requires this, but they cannot have this of their respective scripture.   Where does that leave them?  The Church's textus receptus, in contrast, serves just as well according to her beliefs.

Btw, it can be shown that we neither have the original Arabic of the Quran nor is the Masoretic text the original Hebrew.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Salpy on January 04, 2010, 10:01:59 PM
The fact of the matter is that everybody in the Middle East believed like the COE (including the Armenians Salpy, we have proof that more Armenians were under the COE Jurisdiction than under any other for the middle ages, Armenia was part of the Persian empire)

The Armenians for a long time were split between the Greek (Byzantine, Roman, whatever) empire and the Persian empire, but we had our own catholicoi, many of whom lived within the borders of the Persian empire, but were not in communion with the Persian Church (COE.)
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: ialmisry on January 04, 2010, 10:06:31 PM
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the Peshitta reads:ܘܡܠܬܐ ܒܤܪܐ ܗܘܐ ܘܐܓܢ ܒܢ which literally is "Word-the Flesh-the he-was and-he-abided/rested in/by-us

Citing Isa. The word DWELT with us, he did not become us. BIG difference. Of course I believe Jesus is God, I just dont believe his divinity was destroyed, corrupted, or changed. St.Ignatius would support my Christology.
No, he doesn't (it will have to wait, I've got to leave soon).  You skip the "the Word was Flesh" part, which is the heart of the matter.  The original Greek (and the Greek is the original) is more emphatic on that point.

Caught you Isa, you gave the literal rendering of your own Western Syriac. End of matter.

So? It predates your Khabouris. In fact, Tatian (2nd century) reads "And the Word became flesh, and took up his abode among us"
http://www.ccel.org/ccel/schaff/anf09.iv.iii.iii.html

Your repeating that the present Nestorian Peshitta is the original doesn't make it so, and you have provided no proof, just assertions, until now.  End of matter, unless you can provide proof otherwise.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: ialmisry on January 04, 2010, 10:08:13 PM
So you believe satan preserved the quran but that God was unable to preserve his Words?
Firstly, I hight doubt that there is a perfectly accurate manuscript of the Koran lying around anywhere. Second, what does that have to do with the fact that the New Testament was written in Greek and not aramaic?
The COE is trying to piggy back, it seems, on Muslim arguments of the superior of the Quran over the NT, which they claim is corrupted.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Rafa999 on January 04, 2010, 10:08:54 PM
On the Mar Thoma Christians: they chose Seleukia-Ctesiphon to appoint them Bishops for Centuries. Why did the Christians St.Thomas taught appeal to the Church of the East to appoint them Bishops? Maybe because they perceived the COE as more orthodox. Only in the late middle ages did a part of the Mar Thoma Christians fall under the OO, by accident also (they didn't have a bishop, so they appealed to Antioch under the OO). I don't need to "bring" anything from the Mar Thoma Christians as support- when the muslims murdered COE people most of the Bibles were coming from India as support.

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took up his abode among us

What Tatian said. Word=Miltha not person also.

Tatian's work comes from the Eastern Peshitta too.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: ialmisry on January 04, 2010, 10:12:40 PM
Well, the Assyrian Church of the East, being an ancient church does not feel God has a literal "personhood", his person is more abstract. The catechism of the COE clearly states you cannot know the essence of God directly, only via the Messiah our closest point to the most high. Read Mar Odisho's Book. The COE was never under anybody it was always independent, even Pope Nicholas IV of Rome signed a Bull giving it jurisdiction of the entire East, so its too bad you think otherwise Isa.
Nicholas IV reigned well after the Vatican has left the Orthodox Faith, and had no jurisdiction over anything.  If you want to submit to the Vatican, be my guest, but it has no impression on me.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Salpy on January 04, 2010, 10:13:35 PM
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the Aramaic/Semitic speakers in Palestine and Syria had no problem with Yaldath Alaha, nor did the Armenians, Georgians, Nubians, Ethiopians and Yeminites (the last two also Semites), who lived outside of Rome's control.
The fact of the matter is that everybody in the Middle East believed like the COE...before a mob of monks managed to curry favor with the Romans, institute two fake councils, and split Antiochan Christianity into two halves.

I assume you are talking about Ephesus I and St. Cyril, but I'm not sure.

In any event, it wasn't just St. Cyril who had problems with Theodore's Christology.  The Armenian Catholicos St. Sahag,  who lived within the borders of the Persian empire, and who was Theodore's contemporary, had grave concerns about Theodore's Chrstology.  He wrote against it, and I think some of his writings were even used in the EO's fifth council.  I'm pretty sure this happened prior to Ephesus I.  I know he commissioned St. Mesrob to develop an alphabet for the Armenian language partly out of concern for the problem. 
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Rafa999 on January 04, 2010, 10:13:59 PM
Nicholas IV was a pious wonderful Roman Pope who asserted the COE right to rule over the entire East. You lose man, you lose  :angel:
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: ialmisry on January 04, 2010, 10:15:18 PM
The agnus Dei was introduced from Syria, they were all Assyrian. There is no point in searching exceedingly old manuscripts of the COE since it burns its manuscripts whenever they fall in disuse.

So it has no proof. End of the matter.


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This is why some of the best manuscripts were brought from the Middle East by Western missionaries, because only newer manuscripts are used. The Genocide of 1915 did not help matters either. We hold the oldest Christian liturgy in use in the ENTIRE world, the Anaphora of Mar Mari and Mar Addai who were disciples of Jesus.

The DL of His brother James at Jerusalem is older.

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On Papias: he said material was being TRANSLATED. It was his belief that Matthew was in Hebrew, this does not exclude the possibility of more material being in this tongue and being subject to translation.
Then there would be nothing unusual to mention with Matthew if everything else was being translated from Aramaic, now would there?
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: ialmisry on January 04, 2010, 10:16:02 PM
Nicholas IV was a pious wonderful Roman Pope who asserted the COE right to rule over the entire East. You lose man, you lose  :angel:
LOL. I guess Rome has spoken, deluded as ever. :D
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Rafa999 on January 04, 2010, 10:16:55 PM
The Followers of the shoemaker Jacob Baradeus and Pharaoh Cyrus of Alexandria the great have spoken as well.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: ialmisry on January 04, 2010, 10:17:50 PM
On the Mar Thoma Christians: they chose Seleukia-Ctesiphon to appoint them Bishops for Centuries. Why did the Christians St.Thomas taught appeal to the Church of the East to appoint them Bishops? Maybe because they perceived the COE as more orthodox. Only in the late middle ages did a part of the Mar Thoma Christians fall under the OO, by accident also (they didn't have a bishop, so they appealed to Antioch under the OO). I don't need to "bring" anything from the Mar Thoma Christians as support- when the muslims murdered COE people most of the Bibles were coming from India as support.

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took up his abode among us

What Tatian said. Word=Miltha not person also.

Tatian's work comes from the Eastern Peshitta too.
Tatian predates teh Peshitta, "Eastern or Western," by nearly two centuries.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: ialmisry on January 04, 2010, 10:18:22 PM
The Followers of the shoemaker Jacob Baradeus and Pharaoh Cyrus of Alexandria the great have spoken as well.
And they are one with the peasant carpenter from Nazareth.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Alveus Lacuna on January 04, 2010, 10:18:44 PM
Maybe because they perceived the COE as more orthodox.

Strange, I don't recall that word being a self-identifier for you Assyrians.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Rafa999 on January 04, 2010, 10:19:26 PM
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peasant carpenter from Nazareth

You mean Master Mason of the Temple with Royal Bloodline with that right?  ;D
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Salpy on January 04, 2010, 10:31:53 PM
Nicholas IV was a pious wonderful Roman Pope who asserted the COE right to rule over the entire East. You lose man, you lose  :angel:

I'm sorry, but I am not sure I understand you.  Are you saying that a Roman Pope gave the Persian Church the right to rule over the Armenians?  That's absolute nonsense.  Even if some Roman Pope had made such a decree it would have had no force or effect with the Armenians. No Roman Pope ever had jurisdiction over our Catholicoi.   
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Rafa999 on January 04, 2010, 10:56:38 PM
Attention all Roman Catholics: by the decree of Mar Papa Nicholas IV in 1288, the Catholicos Patriarch of the East has jurisdiction over ALL Christians of the East, from Baghdad all the way to China. Failure to obey this most holy Papal Bull is reason enough for excommunication.

Thats for you papist  :D
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Deacon Lance on January 04, 2010, 11:22:18 PM
The DL of His brother James at Jerusalem is older.

Every Liturgical scholar I am familiar with concede the oldest extant Liturgy to Mar Addai and Mari, dating it to 3rd century, that of St. James to the 4th. 
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Rafa999 on January 04, 2010, 11:26:07 PM
Thank you Deacon Lance, once again your on the winning side. Anybody can compare the two liturgies and see which one is older. And lets remember: the COE burns old manuscripts so they don't get misread during its services or somehow corrupted. You can argue thats "burning evidence" but thats what a semitic congregation did in ancient times

and to Salpy:

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I know he commissioned St. Mesrob to develop an alphabet for the Armenian language partly out of concern for the problem.  

This is exactly what the masoretes did to the Torah- they knew changing the text would be too outrageous so they changed the meaning of words, created entire new systems of intonation of the vowels and how to write the pointers so as to change the meaning of scripture in their rabbinical schools. How do I know your St.Mesrob did not do the same to your Armenian language, script, etc.? How do I know Armenians didn't believe exactly like the COE before this? I know of Historical records which show very similar beliefs to that of the COE in the middle ages. Armenia was part of Persia and the foreign bishops were murdered by the Sassanids (they were paranoid of non-COE Christians and very persecuting to Christians in general), so who were you under?
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Deacon Lance on January 04, 2010, 11:39:07 PM
Rafa,

There are no sides.  One need not degrade another's tradition in order to uphold their own.  A little less combativeness and a little more dialogue would serve you well.  We are all servants of Christ here.

Fr. Deacon Lance
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Rafa999 on January 04, 2010, 11:40:53 PM
Sorry. I'm just being "combative" so as to wake up people here, that there's no such thing as "the heretical Nestorian church" that there are good reasons why the COE took certain positions historically, and so forth. No "degrading" we are all brothers here.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Salpy on January 04, 2010, 11:59:05 PM
and to Salpy:

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I know he commissioned St. Mesrob to develop an alphabet for the Armenian language partly out of concern for the problem.  

This is exactly what the masoretes did to the Torah- they knew changing the text would be too outrageous so they changed the meaning of words, created entire new systems of intonation of the vowels and how to write the pointers so as to change the meaning of scripture in their rabbinical schools. How do I know your St.Mesrob did not do the same to your Armenian language, script, etc.?

During the time in question, late fourth and early fifth centuries, the Persians had laws actually forbidding people from possessing writings that were in the Greek language.  Since the Armenians up to that time had no alphabet of their own, that left them with only Syriac manuscripts, written by members of the Persian Church (COE.)  The leading COE theologian at that time was Theodore, whose Christology was found to be problematic by the Armenian Catholicos, St. Sahag.  That is why he had an alphabet developed by St. Mesrob.  He wanted to be able to translate and bring in theological writings from other traditions besides the COE.  He also wanted the Armenians to be able to write down their own tradition, translate the liturgy and Bible into Armenian, etc. 

St. Sahag did not have the alphabet developed so he could "change the meaning of scripture." That's not only insulting, but it's also something you could never substantiate.

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How do I know Armenians didn't believe exactly like the COE before this?  I know of Historical records which show very similar beliefs to that of the COE in the middle ages. Armenia was part of Persia and the foreign bishops were murdered by the Sassanids, so who were you under?

The Armenians have had their own Catholicoi since the time of St. Gregory the Illuminator in the early 300's.  Our Catholicoi have never been under the jurisdiction of the COE.  There is absolutely nothing to substantiate your assertion that the Armenians ever had a Theodorean Christology.  If that had been the case, St. Sahag would not have been so disturbed about the writings of Theodore.  I'd like to see your "Historical records" from the Middile Ages.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Rafa999 on January 05, 2010, 12:05:18 AM
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That is why he had an alphabet developed by St. Mesrob.  He wanted to be able to translate and bring in theological writings from other traditions besides the COE.

He wanted to innovate is that correct? He decided his people needed a "New" script to read the scriptures instead of sticking to the Syriac, am I correct? Even though Aramaic was the lingua franca of the Middle East much like Greek in Byzantium. He needed other traditions from the West which was at that time suffering under the much disputed heresies I mentioned to invade his domain is that it? He preferred to invent a new language rather than read in Syriac which is nearly identical to the language of Jesus? Sounds pretty suspicious to me...

Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: ialmisry on January 05, 2010, 12:06:09 AM
The DL of His brother James at Jerusalem is older.

Every Liturgical scholar I am familiar with concede the oldest extant Liturgy to Mar Addai and Mari, dating it to 3rd century, that of St. James to the 4th. 
The present form of the DL of Mar Addai and Mari dates to the 6th cent.  The catachesis of St. Cyril of Jerusalem (mid 4th) parrallels the text of St. James, which is attested in Coptic, Syriac, Georgian as well as Greek, and elaborate in each.
http://books.google.com/books?id=0RanQa-mLTwC&printsec=frontcover&dq=Liturgy+Mari+and+Addai&source=gbs_similarbooks_s&cad=1#v=onepage&q=Liturgy%20Mari%20and%20Addai&f=false
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Salpy on January 05, 2010, 12:14:44 AM
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That is why he had an alphabet developed by St. Mesrob.  He wanted to be able to translate and bring in theological writings from other traditions besides the COE.

He wanted to innovate is that correct? He decided his people needed a "New" script to read the scriptures instead of sticking to the Syriac, am I correct? Even though Aramaic was the lingua franca of the Middle East much like Greek in Byzantium. He needed other traditions from the West which was at that time suffering under the much disputed heresies I mentioned to invade his domain is that it? He preferred to invent a new language rather than read in Syriac which is nearly identical to the language of Jesus? Sounds pretty suspicious to me...



St. Sahag was not innovating.  He was trying to protect his people from the Theodorean heresy.  As part of the process, he wanted to see what others in the Christian world were writing about Christ.  That's called doing research.  It's not innovating.  He also was not inventing a new language.  He was getting an alphabet for the Armenian language, which already existed.

Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Rafa999 on January 05, 2010, 12:17:55 AM
Theodore did not spin his Christology from nowhere. I honestly think we have a comprehension problem here on what Mar Theodore actually wrote. He is not Arian, Adoptionist, Apollinarian, Sabellian, Modalist,etc. his Christology is that of the apostles, it is not his fault Greeks make everything insanely "scientific" and cannot understand that the Revelation cannot be fit into a pre-established box every time they want. Really, compare Syriac to Greek. Read a book in Syriac...no vowels! What do you expect?
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: ialmisry on January 05, 2010, 12:32:51 AM
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That is why he had an alphabet developed by St. Mesrob.  He wanted to be able to translate and bring in theological writings from other traditions besides the COE.

He wanted to innovate is that correct? He decided his people needed a "New" script to read the scriptures instead of sticking to the Syriac, am I correct? Even though Aramaic was the lingua franca of the Middle East much like Greek in Byzantium. He needed other traditions from the West which was at that time suffering under the much disputed heresies I mentioned to invade his domain is that it? He preferred to invent a new language rather than read in Syriac which is nearly identical to the language of Jesus? Sounds pretty suspicious to me...



My, my, aren't we suspicious.  I'm a little disturbed by the baptized Muslim polemics.

He didn't "invent" a new language: Armenian had been in existence for quite some time, and the Armenian nation for at least a thousand years by the time of St. Mesrob.  It was the language his people spoke.  Why shouldn't they read the scriptures and worship in that language?

Aramaic had plenty of heresies running about.  Mani made a point that he was born in an Aramaic speaking society, and wrote his Bible in Syriac.  And he wasn't the only Aramaic heresiarch.

Aramaic had been eclipsed as linqua franca by Greek since the time of Alexander. Asoka in India did set up Aramaic inscriptions, but under the Greek. (http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/1/10/AsokaKandahar.jpg)
http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/1/10/AsokaKandahar.jpg
There were several Greek kingdoms in India and the area between Iran, Central Asia and India.  The Romans, who used Greek, had taken Mesopotamia just after the NT was finished, and the rest of the Syriac heartland almost a century before the council of Nicea I.  The Aramaic, and Syriac, languages themselves show the influence of Greek.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: ialmisry on January 05, 2010, 12:38:43 AM
Maybe because they perceived the COE as more orthodox.

Strange, I don't recall that word being a self-identifier for you Assyrians.
No, it's used. But that doesn't mean much, because the Arians, for instance, call themselves "Catholic."
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Rafa999 on January 05, 2010, 12:41:26 AM
Yes, I'm sure the Chosroes and the Sapors spoke Greek  :laugh:

As soon as you create a language you innovate. You decide the grammatical structure and syntax, the system of vowels,the very way people think. The Greeks were 100% absorbed and orientalized, Aramaic predominated. Loan words in Aramaic mean nothing, Hebrew has EGYPTIAN loan words.

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Why shouldn't they read the scriptures and worship in that language?

Better to Targum in Jesus's language no? Think like Jesus by speaking God's language  ;)

As for the Muslim thing, Islam is derived from Syriac Christianity. Mohammed is a Syriac heretic correct.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Deacon Lance on January 05, 2010, 12:58:30 AM
The DL of His brother James at Jerusalem is older.

Every Liturgical scholar I am familiar with concede the oldest extant Liturgy to Mar Addai and Mari, dating it to 3rd century, that of St. James to the 4th. 
The present form of the DL of Mar Addai and Mari dates to the 6th cent.  The catachesis of St. Cyril of Jerusalem (mid 4th) parrallels the text of St. James, which is attested in Coptic, Syriac, Georgian as well as Greek, and elaborate in each.
http://books.google.com/books?id=0RanQa-mLTwC&printsec=frontcover&dq=Liturgy+Mari+and+Addai&source=gbs_similarbooks_s&cad=1#v=onepage&q=Liturgy%20Mari%20and%20Addai&f=false

The present form, yes, but that would be true of most present forms.  The Anaphora of Addai and Mari is seen as contemporary with the Liturgy in the Didache which most date to the 3rd century.

Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: ialmisry on January 05, 2010, 01:02:47 AM
Yes, I'm sure the Chosroes and the Sapors spoke Greek  :laugh:

No, but their predecessors, the Parthians (the ones ruling Persia at the time of Christ) did.  Here's a coin rendering to the shah that which is the shah's:
(http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/6/69/MithradatesI.jpg)
http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/6/69/MithradatesI.jpg
Greek inscription reads ΒΑΣΙΛΕΩΣ ΜΕΓΑΛΟΥ ΑΡΣΑΚΟΥ ΦΙΛΕΛΛΗΝΟΣ ([coin] of the great king Arsaces, lover of the Greeks)

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As soon as you create a language you innovate. You decide the grammatical structure and syntax, the system of vowels,the very way people think. The Greeks were 100% absorbed and orientalized, Aramaic predominated.

Well, they must have been the dominant traid in the "absorbtion," because, as we see above, their language and cultural influence was paramount.

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Loan words in Aramaic mean nothing, Hebrew has EGYPTIAN loan words.

I should think so, living 400 years there, and being led by an Egyptian prince who wrote their law.

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Why shouldn't they read the scriptures and worship in that language?

Better to Targum in Jesus's language no?

No.  That's what Pentecost was about.


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Think like Jesus by speaking God's language  ;)

You mean Arabic?

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As for the Muslim thing, Islam is derived from Syriac Christianity. Mohammed is a Syriac heretic correct.

Then why are you imitating him and his followers?
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Rafa999 on January 05, 2010, 01:09:34 AM
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Greek inscription reads ΒΑΣΙΛΕΩΣ ΜΕΓΑΛΟΥ ΑΡΣΑΚΟΥ ΦΙΛΕΛΛΗΝΟΣ ([coin] of the great king Arsaces, lover of the Greeks)

What better way to show how much you "loved" the Greek language to mint a coin saying "we love Greek"? Please Isa, you know better. You knw that Parthia played these little games with the Sleucids all the time.

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Well, they must have been the dominant traid in the "absorbtion," because, as we see above, their language and cultural influence was paramount.

Where are your Indian Greeks then? They were completely absorbed, orientalized. They adopted the same gods as the Indians and soon reverted to speaking the native languages.

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I should think so, living 400 years there, and being led by an Egyptian prince who wrote their law.

As if living under Greeks for the same time wouldn't result in loan words no?

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No.  That's what Pentecost was about.

So now we lose the original and let the doctrines of men override us? Was that not the reason the pharisees got trashed by Jesus? Do you wish the same fate of Jerusalem in the first century?

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Then why are you imitating him and his followers?

I would never on pains of death or torture recite a blasphemy such as "Allah had no Son" or that Jesus was the (failed) prophet before Mohammed. NEVER.

OH nearly forgot...the COE has the most ancient manuscripts of the Didache with it. So the COE has the "catechism" written by associates of the apostles with it.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: ialmisry on January 05, 2010, 01:35:32 AM
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Greek inscription reads ΒΑΣΙΛΕΩΣ ΜΕΓΑΛΟΥ ΑΡΣΑΚΟΥ ΦΙΛΕΛΛΗΝΟΣ ([coin] of the great king Arsaces, lover of the Greeks)

What better way to show how much you "loved" the Greek language to mint a coin saying "we love Greek"? Please Isa, you know better. You knw that Parthia played these little games with the Sleucids all the time.

That's nice: what games did they play with the Assyrians?

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Well, they must have been the dominant traid in the "absorbtion," because, as we see above, their language and cultural influence was paramount.

Where are your Indian Greeks then? They were completely absorbed, orientalized. They adopted the same gods as the Indians and soon reverted to speaking the native languages.


They survived until the time of Christ.  We have their coins, inscriptions, etc. And no, they didn't adopt Indian gods, but some eventually became Buddhist.  But then, so did some in the Aramaic world and the Roman empire.

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I should think so, living 400 years there, and being led by an Egyptian prince who wrote their law.

As if living under Greeks for the same time wouldn't result in loan words no?

Exactly.

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No.  That's what Pentecost was about.

So now we lose the original and let the doctrines of men override us?

Except for Matthew, we have the original NT.  That we have only a few of the original words is just how it goes.  I've explained my views on the implications for universality of the Bible here already.


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Was that not the reason the pharisees got trashed by Jesus?


No.  The Pharisees spoke and wrote in Aramaic (but not Syriac) like everyone else.

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Do you wish the same fate of Jerusalem in the first century?

I was born about two thousand years too late to wish any fate on first century Jerusalem.

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Then why are you imitating him and his followers?

I would never on pains of death or torture recite a blasphemy such as "Allah had no Son" or that Jesus was the (failed) prophet before Mohammed. NEVER.

Then why do you buy into their ideas of scripture?

OH nearly forgot...the COE has the most ancient manuscripts of the Didache with it. [/quote]

In Greek? Latin? Coptic? Ge'ez?


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So the COE has the "catechism" written by associates of the apostles with it.

On this question, btw:
Matthew and the Didache: Two Documents from the same Jewish-Christian milieu? By Hubertus Maria van de sandtor Waltherus
http://books.google.com/books?id=QwKUjnRZRzkC&pg=PA19&dq=Syriac+Didache&cd=1#v=onepage&q=Syriac%20Didache&f=false
that page (19) deals with the issue of Greek and Syriac culture at Edessa.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Rafa999 on January 05, 2010, 01:48:10 AM
King Abgar spoke Aramaic. The Didache was in Aramaic (our Syriac version=correct). I have proof, Eusebius in his history says he translated the letters and other documents from the Edessene Archive.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Papist on January 05, 2010, 01:54:42 AM
Attention all Roman Catholics: by the decree of Mar Papa Nicholas IV in 1288, the Catholicos Patriarch of the East has jurisdiction over ALL Christians of the East, from Baghdad all the way to China. Failure to obey this most holy Papal Bull is reason enough for excommunication.

Thats for you papist  :D
Yawn. That's no different from our belief that current Ecumenical Patriarch has jurisdiction over Constantinople. This doesn't mean we agree with everything he believes. Your arguements keep coming up flat.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: ialmisry on January 05, 2010, 01:59:07 AM
King Abgar spoke Aramaic. The Didache was in Aramaic (our Syriac version=correct). I have proof,

then show it.  I've never heard of a Didache in Syriac.  And what's King Abgar have to do with the Didache?


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Eusebius in his history says he translated the letters and other documents from the Edessene Archive.
Btw, Abgar was Arab.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Papist on January 05, 2010, 01:59:34 AM
I guess I just can't understand the COE's aversion to God truely participating in our humanity. If he did not how could we be saved? If he did not, how could theosis be possible?
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Rafa999 on January 05, 2010, 02:03:21 AM
King Abgar spoke Aramaic. The Didache was in Aramaic (our Syriac version=correct). I have proof,

then show it.  I've never heard of a Didache in Syriac.  And what's King Abgar have to do with the Didache?


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Eusebius in his history says he translated the letters and other documents from the Edessene Archive.
Btw, Abgar was Arab.

The Didache was used to train people in the Christian faith in Antioch. Actually I don't know if we have an original Aramaic Didache. I will have to check.

To Papist:

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Yawn. That's no different from our belief that current Ecumenical Patriarch has jurisdiction over Constantinople. This doesn't mean we agree with everything he believes. Your arguements keep coming up flat.

The Pope of Rome has spoken EX CATHEDRA there is no way out for you on this one. You either call your patriarch a liar or you accept his bull spoken not as a private theologian.

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I guess I just can't understand the COE's aversion to God truely participating in our humanity. If he did not how could we be saved? If he did not, how could theosis be possible?

We would not be saved if God's essence corrupted itself, a human nature not a frankenstein thing had to be offered as a mass or else we are DOOMED.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Papist on January 05, 2010, 02:16:49 AM


The Pope of Rome has spoken EX CATHEDRA there is no way out for you on this one. You either call your patriarch a liar or you accept his bull spoken not as a private theologian.

Um, not sure what you are arguing here. Sure this guy had jurisdiction over the far east. That doesn't mean the pope agreed with what the guy taught.


We would not be saved if God's essence corrupted itself, a human nature not a frankenstein thing had to be offered as a mass or else we are DOOMED.
We never said that God's nature or essence was corrupted.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Rafa999 on January 05, 2010, 02:19:50 AM
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Um, not sure what you are arguing here. Sure this guy had jurisdiction over the far east. That doesn't mean the pope agreed with what the guy taught.

In 1288 his cardinals did except for the "holy spirit does not come from the Son also" clause the COE doesn't believe in. The best friend of patriarch Mar Yahballaha (the first and only Chinese Patriarch of the COE), the holy rabban Bar Saumo also celebrated mass in Notredame at the Pope's invitation. So much for "unorthodox".
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Papist on January 05, 2010, 02:21:27 AM
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Um, not sure what you are arguing here. Sure this guy had jurisdiction over the far east. That doesn't mean the pope agreed with what the guy taught.

In 1288 his cardinals did except for the "holy spirit does not come from the Son also" clause the COE doesn't believe in. The best friend of patriarch Mar Yahballaha (the first and only Chinese Patriarch of the COE), the holy rabban Bar Saumo also celebrated mass in Notredame at the Pope's invitation. So much for "unorthodox".
I still think your ideas on Christology are unorthodox. Sorry buddy, no cookie for you.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: ialmisry on January 05, 2010, 02:22:09 AM
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Um, not sure what you are arguing here. Sure this guy had jurisdiction over the far east. That doesn't mean the pope agreed with what the guy taught.

In 1288 his cardinals did except for the "holy spirit does not come from the Son also" clause the COE doesn't believe in. The best friend of patriarch Mar Yahballaha (the first and only Chinese Patriarch of the COE), the holy rabban Bar Saumo also celebrated mass in Notredame at the Pope's invitation. So much for "unorthodox".
Yes, the pope in the Vatican at the time was quite unorthodox.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Rafa999 on January 05, 2010, 02:22:32 AM
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I still think your ideas on Christology are unorthodox. Sorry buddy, no cookie for you.

The pope doesn't. See 1994 Christological agreement between Mar Dinkha IV and John Paul VI.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: deusveritasest on January 05, 2010, 03:26:50 AM
Rafa, would you mind if I asked you a few questions about the Theology, Triadology, and Christology of the ACE?
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Rafa999 on January 05, 2010, 03:30:43 AM
Sure. However I am not a fluent Syriac speaker and am trying to get someone more qualified on this thread though. Also because of the controversies the meanings of certain words changed during the debate with the COE. For example, Hypostasis was not used to convey "person" in it's history like it is now being used.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: deusveritasest on January 05, 2010, 03:35:39 AM

Sure. However I am not a fluent Syriac speaker and am trying to get someone more qualified on this thread though. Also because of the controversies the meanings of certain words changed during the debate with the COE. For example, Hypostasis was not used to convey "person" in it's history like it is now being used.

Hmmmmm. I was going to focus on some Aramean terminology. I thought the ACE mostly worked in Syriac and tended to avoid speculating in the Greek. But given that you seem to have stated otherwise, what is the historical understanding of the meaning of hypostasis in the ACE?

Also, what is your preferred title to refer to your church?
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Rafa999 on January 05, 2010, 03:40:46 AM
"Qnome" was very similar in meaning to Hypostasis. The COE was referred to as "Nazarenes" within the Persian Empire and by the Muslims and their Caliphs. Later it became simply "Church of the East" and the present Patriarch added the "Assyrian" part to it to reflect that most of the members are currently ethnic Assyrians (ie: of Iraq). The "Chaldeans" are Assyrians who transferred their allegiance to the Patriarch of Rome instead of the Patriarch of Babylon and also have a few things not allowed in the ACOE like Icons, and a slightly different canon from the ACOE (the last 5 NT books are not in the COE reading cycle but are pious books reccomended for reading and often cited to respect sister churches). The Syriac Orthodox Church followed Cyril's teachings (made popular by Jacob Baradeus) and split from the COE. It's why the SOC is "rum orthodox" (ie: follow the rum, the Romans).
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: ialmisry on January 05, 2010, 03:53:49 AM
"Qnome" was very similar in meaning to Hypostasis. The COE was referred to as "Nazarenes" within the Persian Empire and by the Muslims and their Caliphs. Later it became simply "Church of the East" and the present Patriarch added the "Assyrian" part to it to reflect that most of the members are currently ethnic Assyrians (ie: of Iraq). The "Chaldeans" are Assyrians who transferred their allegiance to the Patriarch of Rome instead of the Patriarch of Babylon and also have a few things not allowed in the ACOE like Icons, and a slightly different canon from the ACOE (the last 5 NT books are not in the COE reading cycle but are pious books reccomended for reading and often cited to respect sister churches). The Syriac Orthodox Church followed Cyril's teachings (made popular by Jacob Baradeus) and split from the COE. It's why the SOC is "rum orthodox" (ie: follow the rum, the Romans).
Uh, no.  The Arab and Middle Eastern resident Greeks are Rum orthodox. The Syriac are "suryaan."  And they weren't "part" of the Assyrian church to break off from it.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Alveus Lacuna on January 05, 2010, 03:56:59 AM
The "Chaldeans" are Assyrians who transferred their allegiance to the Patriarch of Rome instead of the Patriarch of Babylon and also have a few things not allowed in the ACOE like Icons, and a slightly different canon from the ACOE (the last 5 NT books are not in the COE reading cycle but are pious books reccomended for reading and often cited to respect sister churches).

When did your church stop using icons?
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: deusveritasest on January 05, 2010, 04:08:13 AM

"Qnome" was very similar in meaning to Hypostasis.

Could you explain in other words what qnome and hypostasis mean in your tradition? If you can distinguish at all between the two in meaning, that would be helpful, but otherwise just one meaning will be good as well.


The COE was referred to as "Nazarenes" within the Persian Empire and by the Muslims and their Caliphs.

Were there a lot of Jewish Christians in the early COE? (I'm wondering why you were called Nazarenes)


Later it became simply "Church of the East" and the present Patriarch added the "Assyrian" part to it to reflect that most of the members are currently ethnic Assyrians (ie: of Iraq).

Are you aware of the so-called "Orthodox Church of the East"?


It's why the SOC is "rum orthodox" (ie: follow the rum, the Romans).

Are you sure about that? I've only ever heard the Chalcedonians referred to as "rum orthodox".
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: deusveritasest on January 05, 2010, 04:10:02 AM

Uh, no.  The Arab and Middle Eastern resident Greeks are Rum orthodox. The Syriac are "suryaan."

That's what I thought...


And they weren't "part" of the Assyrian church to break off from it.

Unless, perhaps, he has a similar ecclesiastically supremacist view as the EO and OO whereby the ACE is the last remaining representation of the original Apostolic faith.
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: deusveritasest on January 05, 2010, 04:10:44 AM
The "Chaldeans" are Assyrians who transferred their allegiance to the Patriarch of Rome instead of the Patriarch of Babylon and also have a few things not allowed in the ACOE like Icons, and a slightly different canon from the ACOE (the last 5 NT books are not in the COE reading cycle but are pious books reccomended for reading and often cited to respect sister churches).

When did your church stop using icons?

What makes you think that they started at some point?
Title: Re: The Assyrian Church of the East
Post by: Alveus Lacuna on January 05, 2010, 04:42:29 AM
What makes you think that they started at some point?

How perceptive that you noticed the way that I framed the question.