Author Topic: Apokatastasis and Purgatory  (Read 301 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline Xavier

  • Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 113
  • Faith: Catholic Christian
  • Jurisdiction: Apostolic Throne of St. Peter's
Apokatastasis and Purgatory
« on: January 17, 2017, 11:14:57 AM »
Holy Scripture plainly declares that at least some souls will be saved through fire. 1 Cor 3:13 Every man's work shall be made manifest: for the day shall declare it, because it shall be revealed by fire; and the fire shall try every man's work of what sort it is. 14 If any man's work abide which he hath built thereupon, he shall receive a reward. 15 If any man's work shall be burned, he shall suffer loss: but he himself shall be saved; yet so as by fire." There are only two real ways of understanding this verse, Apokatastasis and Purgatory. Either everyone is saved through fire, or at least some souls will be, if anyone is not a universalist therefore, he should believe in purgatory. St. Gregory of Nyssa, St. Clement of Alexandria, St. Isaac of Syria and many others clearly describe a fire of purification before the end of time, St. Gregory writes, "But as for those whose weaknesses have become inveterate, and to whom no purgation of their defilement has been applied, no mystic water, no invocation of the Divine power, no amendment by repentance, it is absolutely necessary that they should come to be in something proper to their case,—just as the furnace is the proper thing for gold alloyed with dross,—in order that, the vice which has been mixed up in them being melted away after long succeeding ages, their nature may be restored pure again to God" http://www.ccel.org/ccel/schaff/npnf205.xi.ii.xxxvii.html Elsewhere, he wrote "When he has quitted his body and the difference between virtue and vice is known he cannot approach God till the purging fire shall have cleansed the stains with which his soul was infested. That same fire in others will cancel the corruption of matter, and the propensity to evil." Its clear the Fathers use the imagery of fire to express the nature of purification, which will be more or less painful the more a man is attached to sin, or has neglected penance and sanctification in this life. In the Bible, we read of Dives in Hades, "Lk 16:24‘Father Abraham, have pity on me and send Lazarus to dip the tip of his finger in water and cool my tongue, because I am in agony in this fire." In Tobit 13:2, "For he doth scourge, and hath mercy: he leadeth down to hades, and bringeth up again" Since St. Isaac etc held that all of Hades is intrinsically purgatorial, why should anyone object to fire - the description handed down both by Scripture and Tradition - being used to denote the painful purifications of the intermediate state before judgment day?

Another Saint Gregory, Pope Gregory I of Rome, like St. Augustine, takes the near-universal belief in some sort of purgatorial purification for granted, rather, St. Gregory the Great is keen to lay down as a principle that there are some sins that incur eternal penalty, "the Apostle said not that he may be saved by fire, that buildeth upon this foundation iron, brass, or lead, that is, the greater sort of sins, and therefore more hard, and consequently not remissible in that place: but wood, hay, stubble, that is, little and very light sins, which the fire doth easily consume." (Dialogues, Book 4, Chapter 39) http://www.tertullian.org/fathers/gregory_04_dialogues_book4.htm The Lord's statement "He who utters blasphemy against the Holy Spirit has no forgiveness, either in this world or the world to come" is understood by Pope Gregory thus, "Out of which sentence we learn, that some sins are forgiven in this world, and some other may be pardoned in the next: for that which is denied concerning one sin, is consequently understood to be granted touching some other". Likewise, the Lord speaks of those who will not get out from prison until they have paid the last penny (Mat 5:26), St. Peter also mentions this prison of spirits where Christ went and preached (1 Pet 3:19-20) and so it is clear the Bible mentions temporary punishment that will have an end (but which will be painful if we've lived in sin) alongside eternal. So, why the objection to purgatory, granted that all Apostolic Churches agree "it is a pious and holy thought to pray for the dead, that they may be loosed from their sins"(2 Macc 12:46)?
« Last Edit: January 17, 2017, 11:19:38 AM by Xavier »
The All-Holy Theotokos, the Panagia, is the perfect model of theosis, an image of the Church, Bride of God without "stain or blemish" (cf. Eph 5:27, SoS 4:7)

St. Ephraem of Syria, Thou alone and Thy Mother are in all things fair; there is no flaw in Thee and no stain in Thy Mother

St. Proclus of Constantinople, As He formed Her without any stain of Her own, so He proceeded from Her contracting no stain.

St. Sophronius of Jerusalem, No one has been purified in advance as Thou (Mary) hast been

Offline beebert

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 179
  • Faith: Orthodox Christian
  • Jurisdiction: Patriarchate of Constantinople
Re: Apokatastasis and Purgatory
« Reply #1 on: January 17, 2017, 11:33:13 AM »
For me, but that is also because I am in a spiritual crisis, apokatastasis is in the end the most rightful, hopeful  and loving solution to the problem of evil among other things and I think many passages in the bible supports apokatastasis. It is a much sounder view of life and of God than the teaching of eternal torment, a teaching which has made many people go away from christianity and also which has destroyed the lite of millions of sensitive souls throughout history

Offline Iconodule

  • Professor of Cryptopatristics at Miskatonic University
  • Toumarches
  • ************
  • Posts: 11,187
  • Monsters from the Id
  • Faith: Orthodox Christian
  • Jurisdiction: Ecumenical Patriarchate (ACROD)
Re: Apokatastasis and Purgatory
« Reply #2 on: January 17, 2017, 11:45:46 AM »
I don't think the Orthodox understanding of the intermediate state is substantially different from purgatory. However, the detailed system of temporal punishments and partial or plenary indulgences is pretty alien to us.
Quote
But it had not been in Tess's power - nor is it in anybody's power - to feel the whole truth of golden opinions while it is possible to profit by them. She - and how many more - might have ironically said to God with Saint Augustine, "Thou hast counselled a better course than thou hast permitted."
Thomas Hardy, Tess of the D'Urbervilles

Offline scamandrius

  • Pray for our next president
  • Merarches
  • ***********
  • Posts: 8,856
  • Faith: Greek Orthodox
  • Jurisdiction: DOWAMA of AANA
Re: Apokatastasis and Purgatory
« Reply #3 on: January 17, 2017, 11:48:12 AM »
Remember also that the early Christians believed that there were degrees or levels of the heavens, the last being the empyrean which means "in fire."  That would suggest a purification by fire that seems to undercut even the need for purgatory.  That and, of course, any Scriptural support.

Offline Vanhyo

  • Elder
  • *****
  • Posts: 369
  • Faith: Orthodox
  • Jurisdiction: Layman in the Bulgarian Orthodox Church
Re: Apokatastasis and Purgatory
« Reply #4 on: January 17, 2017, 01:57:28 PM »
@Xavier, purification is in this life when a person starts to cooperate and commune with the energies of God, there is no repentance once you die, only examination through the aerial toll houses.

the latin theology of purgatory is a distortion, and the idea that the pope can sell the merits of the saints to people willing to pay money to buy them is not only a distortion but also a perversion.
« Last Edit: January 17, 2017, 01:58:08 PM by Vanhyo »

Offline tcolon90

  • Jr. Member
  • **
  • Posts: 57
Re: Apokatastasis and Purgatory
« Reply #5 on: January 18, 2017, 08:15:20 AM »
I don't think the Orthodox understanding of the intermediate state is substantially different from purgatory. However, the detailed system of temporal punishments and partial or plenary indulgences is pretty alien to us.

The purging by fire is something the soul goes through when it approaches God. It is something that occurs as a result of Gods energies. It is not a state or place of penitence for lackluster Christians. It's another innovation resulting from over analyzation of a simple subject and the prideful desire to come up with something smart. Things like these are usually described in pieces and vague tidbits by Fathers, then expounded on incorrectly, then used to make money.

Offline truthseeker32

  • High Elder
  • ******
  • Posts: 641
  • Faith: Eastern Orthodox
  • Jurisdiction: GOA-Denver
Re: Apokatastasis and Purgatory
« Reply #6 on: January 18, 2017, 08:53:41 PM »
@Xavier, purification is in this life when a person starts to cooperate and commune with the energies of God, there is no repentance once you die, only examination through the aerial toll houses.
Aerial toll houses are no more a dogma of the Church than Purgatory is.

Offline Xavier

  • Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 113
  • Faith: Catholic Christian
  • Jurisdiction: Apostolic Throne of St. Peter's
Re: Apokatastasis and Purgatory
« Reply #7 on: January 19, 2017, 03:59:00 PM »
Ok, then, Vanyho, please cite proof from Sacred Scripture or patristic Tradition for these alleged toll-houses. Those who believe in purgatory are the ones who've held to Tradition while aerial toll houses are a relative innovation. There are clear statements of Scripture itself - which the Fathers explicitly interpret - of being saved through fire, contrasting this with those who quickly receive a reward from God for their good works. The Latin Fathers are crystal clear about purgatory. Wheres the comparable proof for toll houses? There's certianly nothing in Scripture about it, I doubt you could even in the whole first millenium find many sources aboit toll houses. I will answer the point about indulgences after that.

St. Cyprian says, "It is one thing to stand for pardon, another thing to attain to glory: it is one thing, when cast into prison, not to go out thence until one has paid the uttermost farthing; another thing at once to receive the wages of faith and courage. It is one thing, tortured by long suffering for sins, to be cleansed and long purged by fire; another to have purged all sins by suffering. It is one thing, in fine, to be in suspense till the sentence of God at the day of judgment; another to be at once crowned by the Lord." Cyprian, To Antonianus, Epistle 51 (55):20 (A.D. 253).

Lactantius also speaks of divine fire trying both good and wicked, but with different effects, "But when He shall have judged the righteous, He will also try them with fire. Then they whose sins shall exceed either in weight or in number, shall be scorched by the fire and burnt: but they whom full justice and maturity of virtue has imbued will not perceive that fire; for they have something of God in themselves which repels and rejects the violence of the flame."

That St. Augustine, St. Gregory the Great and others like St. Caesarius of Arles taught purgatory is not seriously denied by anyone.

"For our part, we recognize that even in this life some punishments are purgatorial ... But temporary punishments are suffered by some in this life only, by others after death, by others both now and then; but all of them before that last and strictest judgment. But of those who suffer temporary punishments after death, all are not doomed to those everlasting pains which are to follow that judgment; for to some, as we have already said, what is not remitted in this world is remitted in the next, that is, they are not punished with the eternal punishment of the world to come." Augustine, City of God, 21:13 (A.D. 426)

"If we neither give thanks to God in tribulations nor redeem our own sins by good works, we shall have to remain in that purgatorial fire as long as it takes for those above-mentioned lesser sins to be consumed like wood and straw and hay." Ceasar of Arles, Sermon 179 (104):2 (A.D. 542).

"Each one will be presented to the Judge exactly as he was when he departed this life. Yet, there must be a cleansing fire before judgment, because of some minor faults that may remain to be purged away." Gregory the Great [regn. A.D. 590-604], Dialogues, 4:39 (A.D. 594).
The All-Holy Theotokos, the Panagia, is the perfect model of theosis, an image of the Church, Bride of God without "stain or blemish" (cf. Eph 5:27, SoS 4:7)

St. Ephraem of Syria, Thou alone and Thy Mother are in all things fair; there is no flaw in Thee and no stain in Thy Mother

St. Proclus of Constantinople, As He formed Her without any stain of Her own, so He proceeded from Her contracting no stain.

St. Sophronius of Jerusalem, No one has been purified in advance as Thou (Mary) hast been

Offline beebert

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 179
  • Faith: Orthodox Christian
  • Jurisdiction: Patriarchate of Constantinople
Re: Apokatastasis and Purgatory
« Reply #8 on: January 19, 2017, 04:05:49 PM »
I think purgatory is logical and scriptural. The question is HOW purgatory is like

Offline Xavier

  • Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 113
  • Faith: Catholic Christian
  • Jurisdiction: Apostolic Throne of St. Peter's
Re: Apokatastasis and Purgatory
« Reply #9 on: January 19, 2017, 04:35:02 PM »
Hi Beebert, to your question of how purgatory works, St. Isaac gives a beautiful explanation of how it is really the fire of divine love that scourges, purifies and saves those who neglected sanctification in this life.

Quote
"I also maintain that those who are punished in Gehenna are scourged by the scourge of love. For what is so bitter and vehement as the punishment of love? I mean that those who have become conscious that they have sinned against love suffer greater torment from this than from any fear of punishment. For the sorrow caused in the heart by sin against love is sharper than any torment that can be.

It would be improper for a man to think that sinners in Gehenna are deprived of the love of God. Love is the offspring of knowledge of the truth which, as is commonly confessed, is given to all. The power of love works in two ways: it torments those who have played the fool, even as happens here when a friend suffers from a friend; but it becomes a source of joy for those who have observed its duties. Thus I say that this is the torment of Gehenna: bitter regret. But love inebriates the souls of the sons of Heaven by its delectability."

St. Isaac states.clearly this purification will be painful snd it is so much preferable to have labored in righteousness on Earth, but nevertheless this purification will come to an end when the soul is sanctified, "Let us beware in ourselves, my beloved, and realize that even if Gehenna is subject to a limit, the taste of its experience is terrible, and the extent of its bounds escapes our very understanding. Let us strive all the more to partake of the taste of God’s love for the sake of perpetual reflection on Him, and let us not have experience of Gehenna through neglect."
« Last Edit: January 19, 2017, 04:36:07 PM by Xavier »
The All-Holy Theotokos, the Panagia, is the perfect model of theosis, an image of the Church, Bride of God without "stain or blemish" (cf. Eph 5:27, SoS 4:7)

St. Ephraem of Syria, Thou alone and Thy Mother are in all things fair; there is no flaw in Thee and no stain in Thy Mother

St. Proclus of Constantinople, As He formed Her without any stain of Her own, so He proceeded from Her contracting no stain.

St. Sophronius of Jerusalem, No one has been purified in advance as Thou (Mary) hast been

Offline Vanhyo

  • Elder
  • *****
  • Posts: 369
  • Faith: Orthodox
  • Jurisdiction: Layman in the Bulgarian Orthodox Church
Re: Apokatastasis and Purgatory
« Reply #10 on: January 19, 2017, 06:36:08 PM »
@Xavier, I find it pointless to replay to you considering how you fail to understand what i am trying to say and how the quotes you provided perfectly support what i wrote, infact if you don't experience/partake of the kingdom of heaven in this life, what hope can you have for the next ?

There is no repentance after you die. You may be helped by another but unless someone else intercedes for you, you cannot help yourself or pay for your own sins in the afterlife.

Also you are mixing things up in erroneous way.

Let me give you something to busy your mind with
Toll houses

The Angel's Revelation to Abba Macarius

This night they demand thy soul from thee

The Aerial Toll-houses in the Philokalia

The Aerial Toll-houses in the pre-schism Western Church

The vision of saint Nephon of Constantia in the forth century

A man who returned from Hell and repented

Looking at it from another angle


« Last Edit: January 19, 2017, 06:40:19 PM by Vanhyo »

Offline recent convert

  • Orthodox Chrisitan
  • Archon
  • ********
  • Posts: 2,047
  • St.David of Wales pray for us
  • Faith: Orthodox Christian
  • Jurisdiction: Patriarchate of Antioch
Re: Apokatastasis and Purgatory
« Reply #11 on: January 19, 2017, 07:59:50 PM »
I think the indulgence issue scarred the purgatory doctrine away from its original intent. In its simplicity, it seems plausible in contrast to a certain Orthodox after death tradition which I would rather not mention. Since the church does not accept purgatory, I cannot embrace it
Antiochian OC N.A.

Offline Mor Ephrem

  • "Mor has a huge ego"
  • Section Moderator
  • Protospatharios
  • *****
  • Posts: 30,085
  • Abp Yeznik Petrosian Defender of the Faith
    • OrthodoxChristianity.net
  • Faith: Orthodox
  • Jurisdiction: East
Re: Apokatastasis and Purgatory
« Reply #12 on: January 19, 2017, 10:26:44 PM »
Remember also that the early Christians believed that there were degrees or levels of the heavens, the last being the empyrean which means "in fire."  That would suggest a purification by fire that seems to undercut even the need for purgatory.  That and, of course, any Scriptural support.

Can you share more about this?
Mor has spoken through George... this is the faith of the fathers!

The Church's bridegroom was never the Byzantine Empire.

Offline WPM

  • Revolutionary Writer
  • Protokentarchos
  • *********
  • Posts: 3,834
Re: Apokatastasis and Purgatory
« Reply #13 on: Today at 05:01:13 PM »
If you're part of that kind of apostolic church.