Author Topic: Why Orthodox do not believe in the penal satifaction theory...  (Read 155314 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline Tamara

  • Archon
  • ********
  • Posts: 2,208
  • +Pray for Orthodox Unity+
Re: Why Orthodox do not believe in the penal satifaction theory...
« Reply #225 on: April 13, 2007, 03:26:35 PM »
And they were right. Russian Priests now think they have the power to forgive sins. ;)

George,

Why do Russian priests believe they now have the power to forgive sins? I know Antiochian and Greek priests do not teach these ideas.

Thank you, Tamara


Offline ozgeorge

  • I'll take you for who you are if you take me for everything.
  • Hoplitarches
  • *************
  • Posts: 16,379
  • My plans for retirement.
    • Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of Australia
Re: Why Orthodox do not believe in the penal satifaction theory...
« Reply #226 on: April 13, 2007, 03:31:58 PM »
George,

Why do Russian priests believe they now have the power to forgive sins? I know Antiochian and Greek priests do not teach these ideas.

Thank you, Tamara


The Metropolitan of Kiev (1633-47), Peter Moghila, introduced a new Prayer of Absolution based on the Roman Catholic formula which says:"May Our Lord and God, Jesus Christ, through the grace and bounties of His love towards mankind, forgive you, my Child [Name] all your transgressions. And I, an unworthy Priest, through the power given me by Him, forgive and absolve you from all yours sins."
« Last Edit: April 13, 2007, 03:41:14 PM by ozgeorge »
If you're living a happy life as a Christian, you're doing something wrong.

Offline Aristibule

  • Masspreost
  • High Elder
  • ******
  • Posts: 515
  • Faith: Eastern Orthodox
  • Jurisdiction: ROCOR - WRITE
Re: Why Orthodox do not believe in the penal satifaction theory...
« Reply #227 on: April 13, 2007, 04:12:05 PM »
If Anselm, Augustine and Aquinas do not represent the theology of 'the West', then who does?  Mother Theresa?

Well, she might for some small group of Catholics and Protestants. I'm not sure I'd consider her a theologian. I've already listed several times several Western theologians who were as important (far more important to some of us in the West.)

St. Justin Martyr
St. Irenaeus of Lyons
St. Hippolytus of Rome
St. Ambrose of Milan
St. Hilary of Poitiers
St. Gregory the Great (the Dialogist)
St. Adomnan of Iona
St. Gregory of Tours
St. Jerome (often says opposite things as St. Augustine)
St. Dionysius the Areopagite
St. Cyprian of Carthage
St. Vincent of Lerins
St. John Cassian (the theological basis of all Western monasticism)
St. Benedict of Nursia
St. Leo the Great
St. Prosper of Aquitaine
St. Isidore of Seville
St. Leander of Seville
St. Ildephonse of Toledo
St. Alcuin of York
Pope Sylvester II
The Venerable Bede
Lactantius
Boethius
John Scotus Eriugena

and many, many others (I stopped pre-Schism, not even getting into Bernard of Clairvaux, Bernard of Chartres, Thierry of Chartres, etc.)  .... that is not an exhaustive list! (including many theological treatises, homilies, and other writings including liturgy that sometimes are anonymous.)


Much of Western theology is actually based on Eastern theologians who were widely read and venerated in the West:

St. John Chrysostom
St. Gregory Nazianzen
St. Gregory of Nyssa
St. Basil the Great
St. Clement of Alexandria
St. Ephraim the Syrian (esp. in England)
And again, many many others ...

The theological literature is actually immense (the more so the further along one gets) - and one can find reflections of Orthodox theology alongside Aristotlean views, or any number of other views. There is even a difference in theologies depending on locality. English theology tends to be very monastic in its influences, very ascetic - see Julian of Norwich. German Rhineland theology tends to be very mystical and florid in its writing. The Spanish mystics are yet another.

So, the what and who does matter - and for the 'big three' : Thomas Aquinas, St. Augustine of Hippo, and Anselm of Aosta (I refuse him Canterbury, though as I noted before - he was the first to use the ontological argument in theology, and opposed the Crusades as well.) One can find Western theologians who teach quite the opposite of all of them. Some of them didn't even teach what their names are now associated with (rather, later men made doctrine of their speculative writings - of which St. Photius the Great noted concerning St. Augustine Hippo, and as many recently have noted of Thomas Aquinas - who was no Thomist himself!) St. Jerome was as important to Western theology, but yet again one can find him opposing St. Augustine on many important matters (consider marriage and sexuality especially.) Then again, there were also Westerners who took theology from some such as Origen and Tertullian (but again, not all.) That being said - there is no 'Western theology',  though many - and included within Western theology is everything 'Eastern' theology has dogmatized, everything required for salvation, and many opinions also shared with 'the East' that are not dogma.
"We must begin at once to "build again the tabernacle which is fallen down, and to build again the ruins thereof, and to set it up;" for HE WHO GAVE THE THOUGHT IN OUR HEART HE LAID ALSO THE RESPONSIBILITY ON US THAT THIS THOUGHT SHOULD NOT REMAIN BARREN." - J.J. Overbeck, 1866

Offline Tzimis

  • Site Supporter
  • Protokentarchos
  • *****
  • Posts: 4,500
  • Jurisdiction: GOA
Re: Why Orthodox do not believe in the penal satifaction theory...
« Reply #228 on: April 13, 2007, 05:23:29 PM »
Dear Demetrios,

I fail to see or find anything in your post that outright proves I'm wrong or misinterpreting anything.  I never denied it was our fault, and I never excluded (or included for that matter) the Holy Spirit's role in our salvation.  I don't see how any of what you have cited or written negates the fact that Divine Consistency had to be preserved, and that is the "debt" that St. Athanasius was alluding to.

See, all this time, Orthodox has been trying to prove that there is one reason why the Word was incarnate, to unite the created and the uncreated.  But I have never found a contemporary "anti-Western" Orthodox mention anything about the Athanasian (HEY, there's someone that begin's with an "A"  ;D ) idea of also preserving the Divine Consistency.

God bless.

What makes you so sure that dept was paid to the father? As I stated earlier the dept is paid but it's paid to the devil. St. Athanasian doesn't say anyware that the dept is paid to the father. Your just using you imagination to the point of not understanding how the trinity is involved in unision. How could Christ owe anything to his father. They are two persona's that do things in unison. Your position leaves us with to separate gods that are in opposition to each other. An a quick fix for not understanding the trinity.
If you are correct than how is the devil bound from receiving the dead? The western approach to this is pointless. It leaves us with the devil to still deal with. Plus two gods. How can you maintain Divine Consistency if One god is forcing us upon the other. Was it not the father that sends the son to save us from begin with? In any event it doesn't look like we can solve many years of separation on an internet board. You know very well the Orthodox position. I'll leave it at that. Peace

Offline Tamara

  • Archon
  • ********
  • Posts: 2,208
  • +Pray for Orthodox Unity+
Re: Why Orthodox do not believe in the penal satifaction theory...
« Reply #229 on: April 13, 2007, 05:32:14 PM »
{aside}
Well - hymns and prayers weren't the only way: sermons were a big deal, and some were even like political speeches (especially during contentious times, like the Arian Controversy, when the masses were swayed to one camp or another largely by rhetoric used in the sermons and speeches).  {/aside}

And interestingly enough, the whole Arian controversy along with how St. Nicholas slapped him is written into our hymns. I remember singing the hymns for Vespers one evening during the summer.

Offline ozgeorge

  • I'll take you for who you are if you take me for everything.
  • Hoplitarches
  • *************
  • Posts: 16,379
  • My plans for retirement.
    • Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of Australia
Re: Why Orthodox do not believe in the penal satifaction theory...
« Reply #230 on: April 13, 2007, 06:44:58 PM »
"Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom; teaching and admonishing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord." (Colossians 3:16)


 
If you're living a happy life as a Christian, you're doing something wrong.

Offline minasoliman

  • Mr., Sir, Dude, Guy, Male, tr. Minas in Greek, Menes in white people Egyptologists :-P
  • Section Moderator
  • Stratopedarches
  • *****
  • Posts: 20,204
  • Pray for me St. Severus
  • Faith: Oriental Orthodox
  • Jurisdiction: Coptic
Re: Why Orthodox do not believe in the penal satifaction theory...
« Reply #231 on: April 13, 2007, 06:53:09 PM »
What makes you so sure that dept was paid to the father? As I stated earlier the dept is paid but it's paid to the devil. St. Athanasian doesn't say anyware that the dept is paid to the father. Your just using you imagination to the point of not understanding how the trinity is involved in unision. How could Christ owe anything to his father. They are two persona's that do things in unison. Your position leaves us with to separate gods that are in opposition to each other. An a quick fix for not understanding the trinity.
If you are correct than how is the devil bound from receiving the dead? The western approach to this is pointless. It leaves us with the devil to still deal with. Plus two gods. How can you maintain Divine Consistency if One god is forcing us upon the other. Was it not the father that sends the son to save us from begin with? In any event it doesn't look like we can solve many years of separation on an internet board. You know very well the Orthodox position. I'll leave it at that. Peace

I hope I haven't hit a nerve.

In addition, I don't think I'm using my own imagination.  I provided very clear quotes.  Somehow, St. Athanasius believed that the incarnation of the Word provided a means to preserve Divine Consistency and Divine Goodness.  Therefore, he solves this by showing that there is no separation in the Godhead.  I have seen nowhere in St. Athanasius indicating that the debt was paid to Satan.  In fact, when talking about Satan or death, he seems to mention destroying and defeating their power over mankind.  There's no debt to pay when you destroy something.

The last part that I bolded makes me question your credibility on knowing the Orthodox position.  I will ask the same question someone posed to you.  How are you so sure about the Orthodox position (not to mention, you deny the Orthodox position of worldwide Resurrection), despite there are many Orthodox positions posited here by your brothers in Christ, and those in the past (and those righteous "Eastern" fathers as well)?

Also, I've noticed that you imagined St. Athanasius's first reason for the Incarnation, and I showed you clearly that's not the case.  Who's imagining here?

And where did I say there was some "enforcement."  I said there was a consistency that had to be maintained.  The debt was to that consistency.

Let's stop being in denial and face the facts.

God bless.

PS  Not to mention, there you go again with that "Western approach" racism.
« Last Edit: April 13, 2007, 06:56:55 PM by minasoliman »
Vain existence can never exist, for "unless the LORD builds the house, the builders labor in vain." (Psalm 127)

If the faith is unchanged and rock solid, then the gates of Hades never prevailed in the end.

Offline ozgeorge

  • I'll take you for who you are if you take me for everything.
  • Hoplitarches
  • *************
  • Posts: 16,379
  • My plans for retirement.
    • Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of Australia
Re: Why Orthodox do not believe in the penal satifaction theory...
« Reply #232 on: April 13, 2007, 07:07:42 PM »
PS  Not to mention, there you go again with that "Western approach" racism.
And there you go assuming the West is a "race". As I've already stated, Barlaam the Calabrian was Western, but he was Greek.
If you're living a happy life as a Christian, you're doing something wrong.

Offline Νεκτάριος

  • Protokentarchos
  • *********
  • Posts: 5,437
Re: Why Orthodox do not believe in the penal satifaction theory...
« Reply #233 on: April 13, 2007, 08:33:25 PM »
Quote
How else would you have illiterate masses learn the theology of the church through the centuries?

The idea that anyone other than the most highly educated could make head or tales out of liturgical texts in times past is a stretch.  Even today it takes some strain for an educated native speaker of a Slavic language to understand much Church Slavonic or a Greek to understand many nuances in ecclesiastical Greek.  Furthermore many Orthodox people didn't have liturgical texts in their native language until fairly recently (Albanians and Romanians for example). 

Offline PeterTheAleut

  • The Right Blowhard Peter the Furtive of Yetts O'Muckhart
  • Hypatos
  • *****************
  • Posts: 37,280
  • Lord, have mercy on the Christians in Mosul!
  • Faith: Orthodox Christian
  • Jurisdiction: Orthodox Church in America
Re: Why Orthodox do not believe in the penal satifaction theory...
« Reply #234 on: April 13, 2007, 09:51:24 PM »
And there you go assuming the West is a "race". As I've already stated, Barlaam the Calabrian was Western, but he was Greek.
So, what you're suggesting is that the West is not so much a race as it is a culture?  A general worldview?  An epistemology employed by the majority of those who live in the West, such that those who use this approach to understanding Truth can be called Western, regardless of where they live or whom they are?
« Last Edit: April 13, 2007, 09:55:56 PM by PeterTheAleut »
Not all who wander are lost.

Offline ozgeorge

  • I'll take you for who you are if you take me for everything.
  • Hoplitarches
  • *************
  • Posts: 16,379
  • My plans for retirement.
    • Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of Australia
Re: Why Orthodox do not believe in the penal satifaction theory...
« Reply #235 on: April 13, 2007, 10:00:17 PM »

So what you're suggesting is that the West is not so much a race as it is a culture?  A general worldview?  A general epistemology employed by the majority of those who live in the West?
<heavy sigh>
I've already said several times on this thread what I mean by the "West", but it seems that people are so bent on stereotyping the "East", that nobody seems to want to hear what people from the "East" actually say....

Here are a few examples:
This may come as a shock to you, but I live in the West, and was born in the West.
When, as Christians, we speak of "East" and "West", we are referring to the two sides of the Great Schism, not to races.

The west is not monolithic, yet anyone who argues against them is racist......
So basically, what you're saying is rather than rejecting bad theology, the "truth" is that I hate: Italians, Celts, Anglo-Saxons, the French Germans, Fins, the Dutch.... Or do you think the "West" is a race? But hang on, I must also hate Greeks, because I reject the theology of Barlaam the Calabrian...::)
Gimme a break!
If you're living a happy life as a Christian, you're doing something wrong.

Offline Theognosis

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 248
Re: Why Orthodox do not believe in the penal satifaction theory...
« Reply #236 on: April 13, 2007, 10:14:02 PM »
The theological literature is actually immense (the more so the further along one gets) - and one can find reflections of Orthodox theology alongside Aristotlean views, or any number of other views. There is even a difference in theologies depending on locality. English theology tends to be very monastic in its influences, very ascetic - see Julian of Norwich. German Rhineland theology tends to be very mystical and florid in its writing. The Spanish mystics are yet another.

So, the what and who does matter - and for the 'big three' : Thomas Aquinas, St. Augustine of Hippo, and Anselm of Aosta (I refuse him Canterbury, though as I noted before - he was the first to use the ontological argument in theology, and opposed the Crusades as well.) One can find Western theologians who teach quite the opposite of all of them. Some of them didn't even teach what their names are now associated with (rather, later men made doctrine of their speculative writings - of which St. Photius the Great noted concerning St. Augustine Hippo, and as many recently have noted of Thomas Aquinas - who was no Thomist himself!) St. Jerome was as important to Western theology, but yet again one can find him opposing St. Augustine on many important matters (consider marriage and sexuality especially.) Then again, there were also Westerners who took theology from some such as Origen and Tertullian (but again, not all.) That being said - there is no 'Western theology',  though many - and included within Western theology is everything 'Eastern' theology has dogmatized, everything required for salvation, and many opinions also shared with 'the East' that are not dogma.

Thank you.  I pray that the Catholic Church looks back to its eastern roots and forgets its medieval past.
« Last Edit: April 13, 2007, 10:17:06 PM by Theognosis »

Offline PeterTheAleut

  • The Right Blowhard Peter the Furtive of Yetts O'Muckhart
  • Hypatos
  • *****************
  • Posts: 37,280
  • Lord, have mercy on the Christians in Mosul!
  • Faith: Orthodox Christian
  • Jurisdiction: Orthodox Church in America
Re: Why Orthodox do not believe in the penal satifaction theory...
« Reply #237 on: April 13, 2007, 10:32:16 PM »
Thank you.  I pray that the Catholic Church looks back to its eastern roots and forgets its medieval past.
Outside of the clear dogmatic differences that have been anathematized several times by the Orthodox Church as heresy (i.e., Filioque and universal papal sovereignty), just what is it that makes the East inherently superior to the West?  I am aware that Christianity started in the East (Jerusalem) from the garden of an Eastern religion (Judaism).  I am aware that the East had developed a very strong theological tradition long before St. Augustine laid much of the foundation for the later development of a distinctively Western tradition.  I am also aware that most of the earliest, most foundational theological controversies (e.g., the Arian Controversy, the often heated Christological debates between Antioch and Alexandria, even the war against Iconoclasm) and the Seven Ecumenical Councils convened to articulate Christian responses to these arguments took place predominantly in the East with little actual participation from the Western half of the Church.  But does this necessarily make the East intrinsically superior to the West?  (I honestly don't know.)
« Last Edit: April 13, 2007, 10:33:09 PM by PeterTheAleut »
Not all who wander are lost.

Offline ozgeorge

  • I'll take you for who you are if you take me for everything.
  • Hoplitarches
  • *************
  • Posts: 16,379
  • My plans for retirement.
    • Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of Australia
Re: Why Orthodox do not believe in the penal satifaction theory...
« Reply #238 on: April 13, 2007, 10:52:45 PM »
But does this necessarily make the East intrinsically superior to the West?  (I honestly don't know.)
Not intrinsically, and no one has suggested that this is the case. The East is superior to the West only since the schism. Had the West maintained Orthodoxy and the East as a whole fallen into heterodoxy & cacodoxy, the tables would have been reversed.
If you're living a happy life as a Christian, you're doing something wrong.

Offline PeterTheAleut

  • The Right Blowhard Peter the Furtive of Yetts O'Muckhart
  • Hypatos
  • *****************
  • Posts: 37,280
  • Lord, have mercy on the Christians in Mosul!
  • Faith: Orthodox Christian
  • Jurisdiction: Orthodox Church in America
Re: Why Orthodox do not believe in the penal satifaction theory...
« Reply #239 on: April 13, 2007, 11:02:42 PM »
Not intrinsically, and no one has suggested that this is the case. The East is superior to the West only since the schism. Had the West maintained Orthodoxy and the East as a whole fallen into heterodoxy & cacodoxy, the tables would have been reversed.
I can agree with this.  But I don't--I'm not saying that you do--believe that the West fell into total darkness when the papal church departed from the fullness of Truth, nor do I deem Eastern epistemology devoid of all error merely because the Eastern worldview reigns predominant in the Church that remained true.  IMO, there is still much that is true in what we call the West, and there is still much to be criticized in what we call the East.
Not all who wander are lost.

Offline ozgeorge

  • I'll take you for who you are if you take me for everything.
  • Hoplitarches
  • *************
  • Posts: 16,379
  • My plans for retirement.
    • Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of Australia
Re: Why Orthodox do not believe in the penal satifaction theory...
« Reply #240 on: April 13, 2007, 11:05:13 PM »
there is still much to be criticized in what we call the East.
Such as?
If you're living a happy life as a Christian, you're doing something wrong.

Offline PeterTheAleut

  • The Right Blowhard Peter the Furtive of Yetts O'Muckhart
  • Hypatos
  • *****************
  • Posts: 37,280
  • Lord, have mercy on the Christians in Mosul!
  • Faith: Orthodox Christian
  • Jurisdiction: Orthodox Church in America
Re: Why Orthodox do not believe in the penal satifaction theory...
« Reply #241 on: April 13, 2007, 11:08:14 PM »
Such as?

Our anti-Western xenophobia, for one.  ;)

Seriously, I do have a problem with a strain of thought in Eastern dogmatics--this appears to my ignorant mind to be somewhat strong in the monastically-influenced Russian dogmatic theology of the last three centuries--that almost seeks to manufacture a patristic consensus on issues where there never was one (e.g., sexual relations before the Fall).  It often seems as if these theologians see Tradition through the prism of an ascetic spirituality developed in the monasteries and see only those Fathers who confirm what they already believe, squelching out the teachings of those many Fathers who saw a different perspective.  There might also be a tendency to rely on the traditions of the early Eastern Fathers while they ignore the contributions of early Western Fathers.  Ironically, the Russian dogmatic theology of the past three centuries where I see this tendency strongest was influenced heavily by teachers from the Latin West.
« Last Edit: April 13, 2007, 11:25:25 PM by PeterTheAleut »
Not all who wander are lost.

Offline ozgeorge

  • I'll take you for who you are if you take me for everything.
  • Hoplitarches
  • *************
  • Posts: 16,379
  • My plans for retirement.
    • Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of Australia
Re: Why Orthodox do not believe in the penal satifaction theory...
« Reply #242 on: April 13, 2007, 11:17:31 PM »
Our anti-Western xenophobia, for one.  (But then, that does rate qualification.  Not all Easterners are so close-minded to Truth wherever it presents itself.)
But, do you see that if I had said something about the West's culture rather than it's theology like you just have said it about the East, I would immediatley be pounced on and called "racist" and "ethnocentric". So why the double standard? Why is it when the East objects to Western theology, it's "ethnocentrism" and "xenophobia", but when the West cannot object to Eastern theology, but attacks Eastern "culture" by stereotyping it, that's considered OK?
I'm talking about the West's theology, not "Westerners"; you, on the other hand, are responding by talking about "Easteners" and stereotyping them.
If you're living a happy life as a Christian, you're doing something wrong.

Offline PeterTheAleut

  • The Right Blowhard Peter the Furtive of Yetts O'Muckhart
  • Hypatos
  • *****************
  • Posts: 37,280
  • Lord, have mercy on the Christians in Mosul!
  • Faith: Orthodox Christian
  • Jurisdiction: Orthodox Church in America
Re: Why Orthodox do not believe in the penal satifaction theory...
« Reply #243 on: April 13, 2007, 11:28:38 PM »
But, do you see that if I had said something about the West's culture rather than it's theology like you just have said it about the East, I would immediatley be pounced on and called "racist" and "ethnocentric". So why the double standard? Why is it when the East objects to Western theology, it's "ethnocentrism" and "xenophobia", but when the West cannot object to Eastern theology, but attacks Eastern "culture" by stereotyping it, that's considered OK?
I'm talking about the West's theology, not "Westerners"; you, on the other hand, are responding by talking about "Easteners" and stereotyping them.

You might want to go back and reread the post to which the above is a response.  I changed it quite a bit; so it might now mean something totally different.

I honestly hope I'm not saying anything that appears to be stereotyping any culture.  If so, please forgive me.  I'm trying to limit my discourse here to those issues that are most important to us Orthodox: issues of theology and doctrine.

Just so you understand, I have come to appreciate the beauty of Eastern ways of thought and have in fact grown very disenchanted with much of what I see in Western culture and many of the theological methods of the Western churches, but this does NOT mean that I see the East as perfect and the West as utterly apostate.
« Last Edit: April 13, 2007, 11:38:10 PM by PeterTheAleut »
Not all who wander are lost.

Offline ozgeorge

  • I'll take you for who you are if you take me for everything.
  • Hoplitarches
  • *************
  • Posts: 16,379
  • My plans for retirement.
    • Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of Australia
Re: Why Orthodox do not believe in the penal satifaction theory...
« Reply #244 on: April 13, 2007, 11:55:49 PM »
Ironically, the Russian dogmatic theology of the past three centuries where I see this tendency strongest was influenced heavily by teachers from the Latin West.
That's right, which is why, as I've pointed out on this thread before, their Priests "absolve and forgive" sins "by the power given to them" in mimicry of the Latin formula "Ego te absolvo". Whereas the formula for Antiocian and Greek Priests has them saying: "I, unworthy and a sinner, have not the power to forgive sins on Earth"
This is the result of what some (including myself) call "The Western Captivity" of the Church. In other words, the theological and dogmatic problems in parts of the Eastern Church have come from adopting the theology and dogma of the Western Church.
« Last Edit: April 14, 2007, 12:00:11 AM by ozgeorge »
If you're living a happy life as a Christian, you're doing something wrong.

Offline Theognosis

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 248
Re: Why Orthodox do not believe in the penal satifaction theory...
« Reply #245 on: April 14, 2007, 12:06:10 AM »
this does NOT mean that I see the East as perfect and the West as utterly apostate.

We are in agreement here.

Offline PeterTheAleut

  • The Right Blowhard Peter the Furtive of Yetts O'Muckhart
  • Hypatos
  • *****************
  • Posts: 37,280
  • Lord, have mercy on the Christians in Mosul!
  • Faith: Orthodox Christian
  • Jurisdiction: Orthodox Church in America
Re: Why Orthodox do not believe in the penal satifaction theory...
« Reply #246 on: April 14, 2007, 12:06:44 AM »
That's right, which is why, as I've pointed out on this thread before, their Priests "absolve and forgive" sins "by the power given to them" in mimicry of the Latin formula "Ego te absolvo". Whereas the formula for Antiocian and Greek Priests has them saying: "I, unworthy and a sinner, have not the power to forgive sins on Earth"
This is the result of what some (including myself) call "The Western Captivity" of the Church.
So, what I read you saying is that you object primarily to the general direction Western theology has gone since the Schism and to the undue influence much of post-Schism Western theology has had on some sectors of Eastern Christendom.  With this sentiment I do agree.
Not all who wander are lost.

Offline Tzimis

  • Site Supporter
  • Protokentarchos
  • *****
  • Posts: 4,500
  • Jurisdiction: GOA
Re: Why Orthodox do not believe in the penal satifaction theory...
« Reply #247 on: April 14, 2007, 01:38:58 AM »
I hope I haven't hit a nerve.

In addition, I don't think I'm using my own imagination.  I provided very clear quotes.  Somehow, St. Athanasius believed that the incarnation of the Word provided a means to preserve Divine Consistency and Divine Goodness.  Therefore, he solves this by showing that there is no separation in the Godhead.  I have seen nowhere in St. Athanasius indicating that the debt was paid to Satan.  In fact, when talking about Satan or death, he seems to mention destroying and defeating their power over mankind.  There's no debt to pay when you destroy something.

Everybody one day will die. Death itself is a debt thats owed because of the consequence of sin. Christ died blameless. He shouldn't have died at all because he was sinless. Why did he die than? Did he die to satisfy the father? ::)

Offline lubeltri

  • Latin Catholic layman
  • Protokentarchos
  • *********
  • Posts: 3,794
Re: Why Orthodox do not believe in the penal satifaction theory...
« Reply #248 on: April 14, 2007, 01:59:32 AM »
To satisfy the divine justice or the divine consistency. It is just that we all die for rejecting God through sin. But God has providently chosen to follow his own law, so he saves us by becoming one of us, laying down his blameless life in sacrifice for us, and rising on the third day. So Christ is satisfying the law of the Father. The sin-debt was paid to the law.
« Last Edit: April 14, 2007, 02:00:15 AM by lubeltri »

Offline ozgeorge

  • I'll take you for who you are if you take me for everything.
  • Hoplitarches
  • *************
  • Posts: 16,379
  • My plans for retirement.
    • Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of Australia
Re: Why Orthodox do not believe in the penal satifaction theory...
« Reply #249 on: April 14, 2007, 02:09:31 AM »
It is just that we all die for rejecting God through sin....
And this is where our theologies part ways. In Eastern theology, death is the natural consequence of sin, just like a third degree burn is the natural consequence of holding a live coal in your hand. It is not "just", and nor is God "just" as we understand justice. He is "rich in compassion, gracious and forgiving, slow to anger, merciful and kind.
If you're living a happy life as a Christian, you're doing something wrong.

Offline PeterTheAleut

  • The Right Blowhard Peter the Furtive of Yetts O'Muckhart
  • Hypatos
  • *****************
  • Posts: 37,280
  • Lord, have mercy on the Christians in Mosul!
  • Faith: Orthodox Christian
  • Jurisdiction: Orthodox Church in America
Re: Why Orthodox do not believe in the penal satifaction theory...
« Reply #250 on: April 14, 2007, 03:10:34 AM »
To satisfy the divine justice or the divine consistency. It is just that we all die for rejecting God through sin. But God has providently chosen to follow his own law, so he saves us by becoming one of us, laying down his blameless life in sacrifice for us, and rising on the third day. So Christ is satisfying the law of the Father. The sin-debt was paid to the law.
Another way one could look at this:
God created Man to live in communion with Him.  This communion is our life.  Sin breaks our communion with God.  Separated from our Life in this way, we can only fall into the dissolution of death.  But in His infinite love for mankind, God made Himself incarnate as the man Jesus Christ in order to destroy death by His own death.  Christ, the Life of all creation, entered the realm of death by submitting willfully to the excruciating torment of the Cross.  Death is the absence of life, so where Life is present death cannot be.  Christ then finalized His destruction of death by rising from the dead on the third day.  I believe this is a rough paraphrase of some thoughts found in the writings of St. Athanasius and maybe from the Pascha homily of St. John Chrysostom, though I could certainly be wrong.

I suppose one can use juridical concepts to speak of our redemption via Christ's death and resurrection and still remain Orthodox--this doesn't appear entirely unprecedented in the writings of the Eastern Fathers.  (Early Eastern theology appears to have emphasized more the ontological nature of salvation, while early Western theology apparently tended to focus more on salvation's juridical aspects.  Neither side was very monolithic in its emphasis, though, because of the frequent dialogue between East and West prior to the fall of Old Rome.  One could even say that both emphases could be united to form a more complete understanding of Christ's redemptive work and that East and West each placed a check on the other to keep the other faithful to Truth.  However, the Western church's departure from orthodoxy changed all this by allowing both sides the "freedom" to pursue the more extreme conclusions of their divergent theological approaches.)  The danger is in carrying this juridical tendency too far, as we fear some prominent post-Schism Western theologians have done.  But then, is it not possible also for some threads of Eastern theology to carry our ontological arguments to untenable extremes?  Didn't we see something like this in the debates between the Antiochene and Alexandrian schools of Christology, where some theologians on each side carried the arguments of their school too far, extreme Antiochenes following Nestorius and extreme Alexandrians becoming Monophysite?
« Last Edit: April 14, 2007, 03:12:14 AM by PeterTheAleut »
Not all who wander are lost.

Offline minasoliman

  • Mr., Sir, Dude, Guy, Male, tr. Minas in Greek, Menes in white people Egyptologists :-P
  • Section Moderator
  • Stratopedarches
  • *****
  • Posts: 20,204
  • Pray for me St. Severus
  • Faith: Oriental Orthodox
  • Jurisdiction: Coptic
Re: Why Orthodox do not believe in the penal satifaction theory...
« Reply #251 on: April 14, 2007, 04:55:58 AM »
And this is where our theologies part ways. In Eastern theology, death is the natural consequence of sin, just like a third degree burn is the natural consequence of holding a live coal in your hand. It is not "just", and nor is God "just" as we understand justice. He is "rich in compassion, gracious and forgiving, slow to anger, merciful and kind.

But here's the weird part.  At the very beginning of this thread, many people decided to show how Eastern fathers believed in the same juridicial approach.

Here's the usual attack against the juridicial approach:  "You're turning salvation into nothing but a Godly desire to satisfy His bloodthirsty wrath."

This is the usual polemical attack, and it fails, simply because you're making out this theology into something it's not intended.

Let's say the word "wrath" is used.  Well, you can't deny this basic Biblical language, and we know that any emotion used to describe God cannot be a simply human emotion, but something that is not understood.  In fact, this could complement what many fathers considered:  the self-same wrath of Hell used against sinners is the exact same Divine Fire of Love of Paradise for the righteous.  On that token, one can see that this is simply a reaction to a sinner.  Then it makes sense that anyone who sins invokes upon himself the Wrath of God.

Now, the second attack is that issue that the debt must be paid to the Father, to "satisfy the Father."  It has been shared the God is not in need of anything.  Yet, St. Athanasius shows us that if man sinned, there is a predicament:

1.  Should God allow man to be brought into non-existence, then this argues limitation against God, since He created man in futility, and wouldn't "satisfy" God's goodness.
2.  Should God fix man immediately or demand repentance, then this would go against God's word that man will surely die, and limiting God, not "satisfying" His Divine consistency.

These are the two parts of "satisfaction," although satisfaction can be a weak word.  It's more keeping consistent God's true nature of goodness and justice.  If He is both Loving and Just, God had to save man in accordance with those two, and He could only do it by sending His Only Begotten Son to take flesh.  Only the Word Incarnate, who is God Incarnate, can pretty much fix man, while at the same time satisfy both God's Love and Justice.

Therefore, if one says that Christ satisfied God's "wrath," and we know that it's just that God's wrath is on sin and corruption, while at the same time, we know that God so "loved" the world, and we know that both "wrath" and "love" is actually the same thing as defined by Eastern Fathers, you cannot say that the juridicial approach parts ways with the ontological approach, but I see the complementing, just as Peter mentioned.

I'm going to requote EA's quotes of St. Athanasius, since they're very important in showing St. Athanasius' thoughts:

Quote
"Formerly the world, as guilty, was under judgment from the Law; but now the Word has taken on Himself the judgment, and having suffered in the body for all, has bestowed salvation to all". (St. Athanasius, Contra Arianos I.41,60)

"How, were the Word a mere creature, could He have the power to undo God's sentence, and to remit sin?" (St. Athanasius, Orations ii. s. 67)

Along with the careful examination of the "two reasons" of the Incarnation in St. Athanasius' thesis, then I don't see anything wrong in the juridicial approach unless it has the Anselmian emphasis on:

1.  crucifixion alone doing the job right
2.  Infinite Sin
3.  Robbing the Glory of God when man sins

So, yes, He did pay a debt to the Father, by paying the debt to the Law.  I see nothing heterodox in Lubeltri's statements.

God bless.
Vain existence can never exist, for "unless the LORD builds the house, the builders labor in vain." (Psalm 127)

If the faith is unchanged and rock solid, then the gates of Hades never prevailed in the end.

Offline ozgeorge

  • I'll take you for who you are if you take me for everything.
  • Hoplitarches
  • *************
  • Posts: 16,379
  • My plans for retirement.
    • Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of Australia
Re: Why Orthodox do not believe in the penal satifaction theory...
« Reply #252 on: April 14, 2007, 07:06:15 AM »
Mina,
You're playing on the word "satisfaction" here.
There is nothing wrong with the Russian theological concept of "satisfying" the Righteousness of God (which is what St. Athanasios is talking about), in fact, this is exactly how Christ redeemed us; that is, by fulfilling the Law: "Do not think that I have come to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I have not come to abolish them but to fulfill them." (Matthew 5:17). And not only Christ, but we too are required to satisfy God's Righteousness: ".... it becometh us to fulfil all righteousness." (Matthew 3:15).

 But this is vastly different to the Western concept of satisfying God's "Justice" (which is what lubeltri is talking about), where God must extract a payment before He will forgive sin.

Satisfying God's Righteousnes is something we must all strive for, but was fulfilled par excellence by the Theanthropic Christ.

Satisfying God's Justice, however by saying things such as:
To satisfy the divine justice or the divine consistency. It is just that we all die for rejecting God through sin.
makes Death not the natural consequence of sin, but a temporal evil imposed on us by God in retribution for sin. In other words, it makes God the Author of evil. The wages of sin are death, but who is it that "pays" these wages? Is it the God Who swore by His Own Life that He does not desire the death of the sinner but that he should turn and live (Ezekiel 33:11)? I don't think so.
« Last Edit: April 14, 2007, 09:18:15 AM by ozgeorge »
If you're living a happy life as a Christian, you're doing something wrong.

Offline minasoliman

  • Mr., Sir, Dude, Guy, Male, tr. Minas in Greek, Menes in white people Egyptologists :-P
  • Section Moderator
  • Stratopedarches
  • *****
  • Posts: 20,204
  • Pray for me St. Severus
  • Faith: Oriental Orthodox
  • Jurisdiction: Coptic
Re: Why Orthodox do not believe in the penal satifaction theory...
« Reply #253 on: April 14, 2007, 09:52:38 AM »
Mina,
You're playing on the word "satisfaction" here.
There is nothing wrong with the Russian theological concept of "satisfying" the Righteousness of God (which is what St. Athanasios is talking about), in fact, this is exactly how Christ redeemed us; that is, by fulfilling the Law: "Do not think that I have come to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I have not come to abolish them but to fulfill them." (Matthew 5:17). And not only Christ, but we too are required to satisfy God's Righteousness: ".... it becometh us to fulfil all righteousness." (Matthew 3:15).

 But this is vastly different to the Western concept of satisfying God's "Justice" (which is what lubeltri is talking about), where God must extract a payment before He will forgive sin.

Satisfying God's Righteousnes is something we must all strive for, but was fulfilled par excellence by the Theanthropic Christ.

Satisfying God's Justice, however by saying things such as: makes Death not the natural consequence of sin, but a temporal evil imposed on us by God in retribution for sin. In other words, it makes God the Author of evil. The wages of sin are death, but who is it that "pays" these wages? Is it the God Who swore by His Own Life that He does not desire the death of the sinner but that he should turn and live (Ezekiel 33:11)? I don't think so.

I really think though that when RC's explain it, and I read the catechism, that there is nothing that indicates in their theology, imho, that makes death an imposed evil by God as you are saying it.

On another subject, we can say God is indirectly the "cause of evil," i.e. He created the consequences.  Subtly, St. Athanasius shows how death is natural to all living things, but to us who are created in the Image of God is made beyond natural, until we sinned.  Therefore, really, God did create death for the animals, and we decided to join them and the natural laws of death when we disobeyed God's commandment.

Perhaps, if we listen to what RC's have to say, they may provide valuable insight rather than putting words in their mouths, so to speak.

But I'm glad that you don't seem to disagree with anything I have written in my last post, I think?  If that's the case, I wonder what welkodox and others think too, since my purpose was not to show how both reject each other, but complement one another (i.e. jurisdictional and ontological languages).

God bless.
« Last Edit: April 14, 2007, 09:56:07 AM by minasoliman »
Vain existence can never exist, for "unless the LORD builds the house, the builders labor in vain." (Psalm 127)

If the faith is unchanged and rock solid, then the gates of Hades never prevailed in the end.

Offline Tzimis

  • Site Supporter
  • Protokentarchos
  • *****
  • Posts: 4,500
  • Jurisdiction: GOA
Re: Why Orthodox do not believe in the penal satifaction theory...
« Reply #254 on: April 14, 2007, 10:53:06 AM »
Let us conclued than with certainty that if one believes in a satisfaction of the fathers wrath he falls victim to the western approach to original sin. When viewed from the Orthodox perspective death is a reconciliation to the father and a bounding of the devil. Do we have silence in the house?

Offline lubeltri

  • Latin Catholic layman
  • Protokentarchos
  • *********
  • Posts: 3,794
Re: Why Orthodox do not believe in the penal satifaction theory...
« Reply #255 on: April 14, 2007, 12:58:53 PM »
But this is vastly different to the Western concept of satisfying God's "Justice" (which is what lubeltri is talking about), where God must extract a payment before He will forgive sin.

Satisfying God's Righteousnes is something we must all strive for, but was fulfilled par excellence by the Theanthropic Christ.

Satisfying God's Justice, however by saying things such as: makes Death not the natural consequence of sin, but a temporal evil imposed on us by God in retribution for sin. In other words, it makes God the Author of evil. The wages of sin are death, but who is it that "pays" these wages? Is it the God Who swore by His Own Life that He does not desire the death of the sinner but that he should turn and live (Ezekiel 33:11)? I don't think so.

You may keep your assumptions to yourself, Ozgeorge. I meant no such thing as the caricature you describe.
« Last Edit: April 14, 2007, 01:07:45 PM by lubeltri »


Offline lubeltri

  • Latin Catholic layman
  • Protokentarchos
  • *********
  • Posts: 3,794
Re: Why Orthodox do not believe in the penal satifaction theory...
« Reply #257 on: April 14, 2007, 01:05:27 PM »
I really think though that when RC's explain it, and I read the catechism, that there is nothing that indicates in their theology, imho, that makes death an imposed evil by God as you are saying it.

On another subject, we can say God is indirectly the "cause of evil," i.e. He created the consequences.  Subtly, St. Athanasius shows how death is natural to all living things, but to us who are created in the Image of God is made beyond natural, until we sinned.  Therefore, really, God did create death for the animals, and we decided to join them and the natural laws of death when we disobeyed God's commandment.

Perhaps, if we listen to what RC's have to say, they may provide valuable insight rather than putting words in their mouths, so to speak.

But I'm glad that you don't seem to disagree with anything I have written in my last post, I think?  If that's the case, I wonder what welkodox and others think too, since my purpose was not to show how both reject each other, but complement one another (i.e. jurisdictional and ontological languages).

God bless.

Absolutely right. They complement each other. The denial of any juridical aspect is just plain heterodoxy to me---it ignores so much Scripture and so many Church Fathers. What is the use of the Old Testament without this understanding? Some people like to create caricatures like "God demanding payment before he will forgive," "satisfying God's bloody wrath," etc. with which to beat Westerners over the head. Now I certainly acknowledge that some of this exists among some Reformed circles (and even then they are far more subtle than the caricatures), but to smear Catholicism or all the West with this is silly.

Offline PeterTheAleut

  • The Right Blowhard Peter the Furtive of Yetts O'Muckhart
  • Hypatos
  • *****************
  • Posts: 37,280
  • Lord, have mercy on the Christians in Mosul!
  • Faith: Orthodox Christian
  • Jurisdiction: Orthodox Church in America
Re: Why Orthodox do not believe in the penal satifaction theory...
« Reply #258 on: April 14, 2007, 01:50:15 PM »
Oh my, more red herrings.

http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,10546.0.html

http://razilazenje.blogspot.com/2006/12/ancestral-vs-original-sin-false.html
http://razilazenje.blogspot.com/2007/01/original-sin-west-haters-strike-back.html
http://razilazenje.blogspot.com/2006/03/original-sin-in-eastern-orthodox.html
http://razilazenje.blogspot.com/2006/12/ancestral-sin-quotations-from-orthodox.html

We can run from our past, but we can't hide.


EXACTLY!  I don't think anyone can really deny how much influence Augustine, Aquinas, Anselm, and many others have had on Western theological development, but let's not make the mistake of calling the West monolithic in this regard.  It is true that some approaches to theological reasoning appear very strong in the West but rather weak in the East, such that we can call these methods distinctively Western ways of thought.  However, this does not mean such as the following:
  • that Western Christianity as a whole has developed these threads to their logical extremes--we may see some Western sectarians who have done so, but they're in the minority.
  • that many of the conclusions of these methods, or even the use of the methods themselves, command a near-unanimous consensus in the West.
  • that these theological approaches and emphases are totally absent in the East.
Not all who wander are lost.

Offline PeterTheAleut

  • The Right Blowhard Peter the Furtive of Yetts O'Muckhart
  • Hypatos
  • *****************
  • Posts: 37,280
  • Lord, have mercy on the Christians in Mosul!
  • Faith: Orthodox Christian
  • Jurisdiction: Orthodox Church in America
Re: Why Orthodox do not believe in the penal satifaction theory...
« Reply #259 on: April 14, 2007, 02:14:25 PM »
People can redefine the "juridical view" all they want, but it is the juridical view of Anselm in particular that is heretical.  It leads to immaculate conception, infant damnation before baptism, etc.
Okay, of all the strawmen, or red herrings, or just plain silly statements I've seen on this thread, this is by far the silliest!  Just how does Anselm's juridical view of atonement lead to the dogma of the Immaculate Conception?  ???
Silliest?  Take it from Anselm.   ;)

CHAPTER SIXTEEN
How God assumed from the sinful mass a sinless
human nature. The salvation of Adam and of Eve.

...

By the way, this was taken straight from Cur Deus Homo.
Having read the excerpt of Anselm that you provided, I have to say that this appears to me to be primarily a discourse on Mary's purity within the framework of that doctrine of Original Sin posited by St. Augustine, with very little said about any particular view of atonement.  But then that's how I read the text.  My question to you, then, is this: Do you object to Anselm's actual doctrine of atonement, or do you object to what you mistakenly interpret to be Anselm's doctrine of atonement because of the preconceived notions you read into his texts?
Not all who wander are lost.

Offline Tamara

  • Archon
  • ********
  • Posts: 2,208
  • +Pray for Orthodox Unity+

Offline AMM

  • Archon
  • ********
  • Posts: 2,076
Re: Why Orthodox do not believe in the penal satifaction theory...
« Reply #261 on: April 14, 2007, 03:01:06 PM »
It's not about him whoever that person is, it's about what he is presenting from the past of the church.

Attacking people's credibility instead of engaging their arguments also does not strengthen an argument.

Offline ozgeorge

  • I'll take you for who you are if you take me for everything.
  • Hoplitarches
  • *************
  • Posts: 16,379
  • My plans for retirement.
    • Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of Australia
Re: Why Orthodox do not believe in the penal satifaction theory...
« Reply #262 on: April 14, 2007, 07:12:36 PM »
You may keep your assumptions to yourself, Ozgeorge. I meant no such thing as the caricature you describe.
If one wishes to take the judicial view of Redemtion, one has no choice but to aknowledge that the reductio ad absurdum is that God cannot forgive sin unless a penalty for it is paid, and one lays oneself open to the accusations of Atheists that the God one worships doesn't think repentance is sincere enough unless someone has pain and death inflicted on them.
« Last Edit: April 14, 2007, 07:13:40 PM by ozgeorge »
If you're living a happy life as a Christian, you're doing something wrong.

Offline minasoliman

  • Mr., Sir, Dude, Guy, Male, tr. Minas in Greek, Menes in white people Egyptologists :-P
  • Section Moderator
  • Stratopedarches
  • *****
  • Posts: 20,204
  • Pray for me St. Severus
  • Faith: Oriental Orthodox
  • Jurisdiction: Coptic
Re: Why Orthodox do not believe in the penal satifaction theory...
« Reply #263 on: April 14, 2007, 07:19:45 PM »
If one wishes to take the judicial view of Redemtion, one has no choice but to aknowledge that the reductio ad absurdum is that God cannot forgive sin unless a penalty for it is paid, and one lays oneself open to the accusations of Atheists that the God one worships doesn't think repentance is sincere enough unless someone has pain and death inflicted on them.

According to St. Athanasius, repentance wasn't enough.  Not only does it not heal the corruption, but also it makes God's word untrue to simply forgive after saying one will "surely die."

Again, it's not about sincerity, it's about consistency.  The polemical attack that God is a sadistic Being who thrives in the blood of sinners is indeed an atheist false attack, no different than an atheist attacking our conception of even the existence of such a god, or even the Trinity of God, which many atheists and Muslims thrive to show how that's irrationally "not one".

Again, we should not put words in RC mouths.  Let's seek to understand them.  Perhaps, all they were affirming all this time was Athanasian theology.

God bless.
« Last Edit: April 14, 2007, 07:25:24 PM by minasoliman »
Vain existence can never exist, for "unless the LORD builds the house, the builders labor in vain." (Psalm 127)

If the faith is unchanged and rock solid, then the gates of Hades never prevailed in the end.

Offline ozgeorge

  • I'll take you for who you are if you take me for everything.
  • Hoplitarches
  • *************
  • Posts: 16,379
  • My plans for retirement.
    • Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of Australia
Re: Why Orthodox do not believe in the penal satifaction theory...
« Reply #264 on: April 14, 2007, 07:47:23 PM »
According to St. Athanasius, repentance wasn't enough.  Not only does it not heal the corruption, but also it makes God's word untrue to simply forgive after saying one will "surely die."

But you are assuming that St. Athanasios is taking the judicial view here, and you are reading things into him that he does not say. Where does St. Athanasios say that God cannot forgive sin without the Crucifixion? Forgiving sin is one thing, and redeeming us from death is quite another.

I've said it three times on this thread, and I'll say it again: Death is the natural consequence of sin, not the "penalty" inflicted by God for sin. We will "surely die" for sin just as we will "surely die" if we ingest cyanide, but death is not the "penalty" for ingesting cyanide, it's merely the natural consequence of it. By ingesting cyanide, we corrupt our homeostasis, and this leads to death. Sin also corrupts us and leads to death.

The greatest testimony to the fact that God did not redeem mankind by judicial means is the Harrowing of Hades. It was a rescue mission to save mankind from the natural consequences of sin, just like a paramedic saves a drug addict from the natural consequences of taking an overdose.

Again, we should not put words in RC mouths.  Let's seek to understand them.  Perhaps, all they were affirming all this time was Athanasian theology.
I am listening, and what I am hearing is that unless I take the judicial view of redemption, I am a heretic, and I refuse to accept that.
The denial of any juridical aspect is just plain heterodoxy to me
« Last Edit: April 14, 2007, 08:12:23 PM by ozgeorge »
If you're living a happy life as a Christian, you're doing something wrong.

Offline minasoliman

  • Mr., Sir, Dude, Guy, Male, tr. Minas in Greek, Menes in white people Egyptologists :-P
  • Section Moderator
  • Stratopedarches
  • *****
  • Posts: 20,204
  • Pray for me St. Severus
  • Faith: Oriental Orthodox
  • Jurisdiction: Coptic
Re: Why Orthodox do not believe in the penal satifaction theory...
« Reply #265 on: April 14, 2007, 08:31:22 PM »
But you are assuming that St. Athanasios is taking the judicial view here, and you are reading things into him that he does not say. Where does St. Athanasios say that God cannot forgive sin without the Crucifixion? Forgiving sin is one thing, and redeeming us from death is quite another.

Well, St. Athanasius says that God cannot merely forgive sin or fix corruption, even though He has that power, it would be "inconsistent" for God to forgive sin without the Incarnation, Human Life, Death, and Resurrection of Christ.  So, in the end, St. Athanasius does indeed say that God cannot "forgive sin" without the Incarnation, in addition to redemption of death.

Implicitly, St. Athanasius does indeed take a judicial view.  To deny the judicial view is one thing, but to pretend that this is solely a "Western thing" is another.  Like someone said earlier, I don't think someone asks forgiveness by the blood of Christ as a result of "taking cyanide."  It more like an alcoholic.  He has to admit he has a problem, then proceed with the treatment.  The feeling of accepting of an alcoholic in AA meetings makes a difference, almost like the feeling of "forgiveness."

God bless.
« Last Edit: April 14, 2007, 08:35:01 PM by minasoliman »
Vain existence can never exist, for "unless the LORD builds the house, the builders labor in vain." (Psalm 127)

If the faith is unchanged and rock solid, then the gates of Hades never prevailed in the end.

Offline Tamara

  • Archon
  • ********
  • Posts: 2,208
  • +Pray for Orthodox Unity+
Re: Why Orthodox do not believe in the penal satifaction theory...
« Reply #266 on: April 14, 2007, 08:45:50 PM »
It's not about him whoever that person is, it's about what he is presenting from the past of the church.

Attacking people's credibility instead of engaging their arguments also does not strengthen an argument.

He takes quotes from the Fathers out of context and uses a proof-texting form of argument Protestants are well know for. Its been agreed to that the Fathers are not perfect in what they have written. Someone else could sit down and pull 15 or 20 quotes from the Fathers that would refute Ephrem's claims. If the divine satisfaction theory was of any significance or importance to Eastern Orthodoxy we would have had multiple hymns, prayers, and liturgical commentaries filling our services describing it through the centuries so that the whole church would understand it as a dimension of what we believe. We do not have any. Ephrem is constructing his own fadish version of Orthodoxy for his own personal agenda. Perhaps he hopes to see all Christians unite because of his hatred of the Muslim encroachment. His blog is quite political. I do not trust him.

Offline minasoliman

  • Mr., Sir, Dude, Guy, Male, tr. Minas in Greek, Menes in white people Egyptologists :-P
  • Section Moderator
  • Stratopedarches
  • *****
  • Posts: 20,204
  • Pray for me St. Severus
  • Faith: Oriental Orthodox
  • Jurisdiction: Coptic
Re: Why Orthodox do not believe in the penal satifaction theory...
« Reply #267 on: April 14, 2007, 08:52:17 PM »
He takes quotes from the Fathers out of context and uses a proof-texting form of argument Protestants are well know for. Its been agreed to that the Fathers are not perfect in what they have written. Someone else could sit down and pull 15 or 20 quotes from the Fathers that would refute Ephrem's claims. If the divine satisfaction theory was of any significance or importance to Eastern Orthodoxy we would have had multiple hymns, prayers, and liturgical commentaries filling our services describing it through the centuries so that the whole church would understand it as a dimension of what we believe. We do not have any. Ephrem is constructing his own fadish version of Orthodoxy for his own personal agenda. Perhaps he hopes to see all Christians unite because of his hatred of the Muslim encroachment. His blog is quite political. I do not trust him.

Slowly, I feel like the tides are turning from "it ain't in the Eastern fathers" to "even if it is, they're not perfect, we still have our infallible liturgies."

So, in this whole discussion, there really is no point if we use quotes from people like St. Athanasius.  For all any EO cares, St. Athanasius can be a scholastic heretic if he doesn't follow the Byzantine liturgical texts and hymns.
Vain existence can never exist, for "unless the LORD builds the house, the builders labor in vain." (Psalm 127)

If the faith is unchanged and rock solid, then the gates of Hades never prevailed in the end.

Offline ozgeorge

  • I'll take you for who you are if you take me for everything.
  • Hoplitarches
  • *************
  • Posts: 16,379
  • My plans for retirement.
    • Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of Australia
Re: Why Orthodox do not believe in the penal satifaction theory...
« Reply #268 on: April 14, 2007, 09:02:35 PM »
Well, St. Athanasius says that God cannot merely forgive sin or fix corruption, even though He has that power, it would be "inconsistent" for God to forgive sin without the Incarnation, Human Life, Death, and Resurrection of Christ.  So, in the end, St. Athanasius does indeed say that God cannot "forgive sin" without the Incarnation, in addition to redemption of death.

No he doesn't Mina.

Listen to what St. Athanasios actually says:
Quote
"The law of death, which followed from the Transgression, prevailed upon us, and from it there was no escape. The thing that was happening was in truth both monstrous and unfitting. It would, of course, have been unthinkable that God should go back upon His word and that man, having transgressed, should not die ; but it was equally monstrous that beings which once had shared the nature of the Word should perish and turn back again into non-existence through corruption."
St. Athanasios says that Death is not "Just" as lubeltri claims, St. Athanasios says it is monstrous.

and St. Athanasios also says:
Quote
"Was He to demand repentance from men for their transgression ? You might say that that was worthy of God, and argue further that, as through the Transgression they became subject to corruption, so through repentance they might return to incorruption again. But repentance would not guard the Divine consistency, for, if death did not hold dominion over men, God would still remain untrue. Nor does repentance recall men from what is according to their nature ; all that it does is to make them cease from sinning., Had it been a case of a trespass only, and not of a subsequent corruption, repentance would have been well enough; but when once transgression had Begun men came under the power of the corruption proper to their nature and were bereft of the grace which belonged to them as creatures in the Image of God. No, repentance could not meet the case. What-or rather Who was it that was needed for such grace and such recall as we required? "
St. Athanasios is not talking about forgiveness, but healing the consequences of sin. One can repent of murdering someone, and God will forgive them, but the consequences of the sin (the corruption it causes) remain- the victim remains dead.

You are equating Forgiveness with Redemption- which is the very error which the judicial view makes, but St. Athanasios clearly distinguishes between sin and it's consequences, and between forgiveness and Redemption. Sin can be forgiven, and indeed was forgiven even before the Incarnation. But the echoes sin causes through the Universe, that is, it's consequences, could only be healed through the Incarnation, Passion, Death and Resurrection of the God-Man.
« Last Edit: April 14, 2007, 10:10:22 PM by ozgeorge »
If you're living a happy life as a Christian, you're doing something wrong.

Offline Tzimis

  • Site Supporter
  • Protokentarchos
  • *****
  • Posts: 4,500
  • Jurisdiction: GOA
Re: Why Orthodox do not believe in the penal satifaction theory...
« Reply #269 on: April 14, 2007, 09:17:38 PM »
Well, St. Athanasius says that God cannot merely forgive sin or fix corruption, even though He has that power, it would be "inconsistent" for God to forgive sin without the Incarnation, Human Life, Death, and Resurrection of Christ.  So, in the end, St. Athanasius does indeed say that God cannot "forgive sin" without the Incarnation, in addition to redemption of death.


God bless.

St. Athanasius is right and my I add, a pillar of Orthodoxy.
  
    This in Orthodoxy is called free willGod doesn't force anything on us. We must willfully accept his mercy and through his church we can be presented to the father clean from sin. When we unite together with Christ at the Eucharist we as the body and Christ as the head are offered up to the father in union with Christ. That is why it's call communion. We are spotless in the fathers eyes.

    Hence the formulation of the prayer: "Thou art the offerer and the offering, the One Who accepts and the One Who is propagated"
« Last Edit: April 14, 2007, 09:24:32 PM by Demetrios G. »