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Author Topic: Indulgences, Temporal Punishment, Purgatory, etc  (Read 175474 times) Average Rating: 5
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« Reply #270 on: February 18, 2009, 09:48:24 AM »

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« Reply #271 on: February 18, 2009, 09:57:14 AM »

Perhaps I am wrong to press this too much, but I was asking about the case where a person might not have repented of a lesser sin. In such a case, would it be unreasonable to assume that he might undergo some sort of purification before entering heaven?

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

Regarding middle places (states) and fire and punishment--we do not know.
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« Reply #272 on: February 18, 2009, 10:04:57 AM »

"For the Lord disciplines him whom he loves, and chastises every son he recieves." -Hebrews 12:6

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

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

What is your point?

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

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

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« Reply #273 on: February 18, 2009, 10:11:52 AM »

Are you saying that God's mercy is not a given because we ask for it? Oh my.  Cry

No I'm saying that presumption of God's Mercy is not a teaching of the early Church which is why they asked for it.
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« Reply #274 on: February 18, 2009, 10:18:34 AM »

For we have been justified, not by the works of the law that we have done, but by His great mercy.
St Cyril of Alexandria

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« Reply #275 on: February 18, 2009, 10:19:39 AM »

Even if we have thousands of acts of great virtue to our credit, our confidence in being heard must be based on God's mercy and His love for men. Even if we stand at the very summit of virtue, it is by mercy that we shall be saved.
St. John Chrysostom

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« Reply #276 on: February 18, 2009, 10:26:59 AM »

"Even though we, in our supreme ignorance, childishness, and tendency toward evil, turn away from true life and place many impediments along our path because we really do not like to repent, nevertheless, He has great mercy on us. He patiently waits for us until we will be converted and return to Him...that our faces may not be ashamed in the day of judgment."
St. Macarius the Great

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« Reply #277 on: February 18, 2009, 10:52:41 AM »

For we have been justified, not by the works of the law that we have done, but by His great mercy.
St Cyril of Alexandria

So, are you saying that everyone should presume justification with God?
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« Reply #278 on: February 18, 2009, 11:15:31 AM »

So, are you saying that everyone should presume justification with God?

Explain your understanding of "justification".
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« Reply #279 on: February 18, 2009, 11:23:31 AM »

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

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

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

In Christ,   Alex





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« Reply #280 on: February 18, 2009, 11:52:12 AM »

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

Holy Synod of Jerusalem, 1672
Chapter VI, Decree XVIII


In Greek:

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

In Latin:

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


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Mark of Ephesus did not believe in a purgatorial fire---instead he believed
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« Reply #281 on: February 18, 2009, 11:52:15 AM »

"For the Lord disciplines him whom he loves, and chastises every son he recieves." -Hebrews 12:6

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

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

What is your point?

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

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


I was not even addressing purgatory. I was talking about your false idea that God does not punish us. He in fact does.
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« Reply #282 on: February 18, 2009, 12:04:12 PM »

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

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

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

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

I think this explains it well:

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

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« Reply #283 on: February 18, 2009, 12:04:13 PM »

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

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

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

In Christ,   Alex






Again I was not addressing purgatory with these verses. I was only addressing your false idea that God does not punihs us.
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« Reply #284 on: February 18, 2009, 12:06:02 PM »

I was not even addressing purgatory.

Okay.

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

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

And since this thread is about purgatory and indulgences, perhaps this side bar should be split?
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« Reply #285 on: February 18, 2009, 12:17:11 PM »

A quote from C. S. Lewis, an Anglican:

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

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


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« Reply #286 on: February 18, 2009, 12:23:47 PM »

Papist, if your wife did something to displease you, would you hit her to teach her a lesson? If you think it works for a child, why not go about slugging your wife as well? After all, isn't that good discipline? Islam certainly thinks so. Wonder if that makes you a Muslim rather than a Christian. Roll Eyes
I'm not married. I don't have children. My parents punished us through spankings when we were young and looking back it was a good deterent. I'm glad my parents didn't buy into the liberal nonsense of "no spanking" that our modern society wants us all to buy into.

Oh yes, let's use violence to teach our children how to be good. Your words are sick, Papist. How much bigger and stronger were your parents than you and yet they think it's okay to strike their child, even if it's on the behind. Why is it that some people think it's okay to raise a hand to our children, but it's suddenly assault when done to an adult? Why don't our priests raise a hand to us when we're bad? After all, isn't it considered "good discipline"?
And for the record, I don't have any kids, either. I don't need kids to know that spanking can never be done in love, because spanking is just another form of assault!
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« Reply #287 on: February 18, 2009, 12:39:38 PM »

I was not even addressing purgatory.

Okay.

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

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

And since this thread is about purgatory and indulgences, perhaps this side bar should be split?
So you don't agree with the bible? I see....
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« Reply #288 on: February 18, 2009, 12:39:52 PM »

A quote from C. S. Lewis, an Anglican:

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

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



C.S. Lewis' discussions on purgatory are just about my favorite. He has a great way of bringing theology to a place of common sense.
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« Reply #289 on: February 18, 2009, 12:45:37 PM »

Papist, if your wife did something to displease you, would you hit her to teach her a lesson? If you think it works for a child, why not go about slugging your wife as well? After all, isn't that good discipline? Islam certainly thinks so. Wonder if that makes you a Muslim rather than a Christian. Roll Eyes
I'm not married. I don't have children. My parents punished us through spankings when we were young and looking back it was a good deterent. I'm glad my parents didn't buy into the liberal nonsense of "no spanking" that our modern society wants us all to buy into.

Oh yes, let's use violence to teach our children how to be good. Your words are sick, Papist. How much bigger and stronger were your parents than you and yet they think it's okay to strike their child, even if it's on the behind. Why is it that some people think it's okay to raise a hand to our children, but it's suddenly assault when done to an adult? Why don't our priests raise a hand to us when we're bad? After all, isn't it considered "good discipline"?
And for the record, I don't have any kids, either. I don't need kids to know that spanking can never be done in love, because spanking is just another form of assault!
I guess you don't believe in the bible either. "Spare the rod spoil the child." But if you want to discuss spanking there is another thread for that. The moderator has asked that we keep the discussion on temporal punishment from the hands of God.
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« Reply #290 on: February 18, 2009, 12:55:03 PM »

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

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

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« Reply #291 on: February 18, 2009, 12:56:49 PM »

So you don't agree with the bible? I see....

No, you do not see....and if you claim that I do not believe in the Bible one more time...I will report you for your insults.
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« Reply #292 on: February 18, 2009, 12:58:09 PM »

I guess you don't believe in the bible either.

You had to do it again, eh?
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« Reply #293 on: February 18, 2009, 12:59:50 PM »

Papist, if your wife did something to displease you, would you hit her to teach her a lesson? If you think it works for a child, why not go about slugging your wife as well? After all, isn't that good discipline? Islam certainly thinks so. Wonder if that makes you a Muslim rather than a Christian. Roll Eyes
I'm not married. I don't have children. My parents punished us through spankings when we were young and looking back it was a good deterent. I'm glad my parents didn't buy into the liberal nonsense of "no spanking" that our modern society wants us all to buy into.

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

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

If you disagree fine but why resort to bad comparisons an personnel attacks if your argument is so strong?
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« Reply #294 on: February 18, 2009, 01:09:13 PM »

So you don't agree with the bible? I see....

No, you do not see....and if you claim that I do not believe in the Bible one more time...I will report you for your insults.
IOW:  "I'm gonna tell on you!"
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« Reply #295 on: February 18, 2009, 01:11:16 PM »

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

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

Sick indeed!
More proof that you don't believe in the scriptures. "Spare the rod spoil the child" I think its sick that you don't take the initiative to provide real discipline for your children. I was never traumatized when I was spanked becuase my parents didn't beat me. They never took it that far. But I guess you will jump to absurd conclusions in the same way that you jump to absurd conclusions when dealing with Catholicism.
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« Reply #296 on: February 18, 2009, 01:11:17 PM »

I guess you don't believe in the bible either.

You had to do it again, eh?
Well, you continue to provide more evidence that you don't believe in the bible. I can only assume that this is true based on what you have said in this thread. If you do believe in the bible, then submitt to it and accept the scriptural teachings that God does punish us and that its not fun but that he does it for out own good.
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« Reply #297 on: February 18, 2009, 01:11:17 PM »

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

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


I didn't call you a modernist. I just think you have one particularly modernist view. Overall you are faily orthodox. Just in this one instance you have succumb to modernist thinking. We all have our faults. No one is perfect. For example, I can very uncharitable online at times but I am working on it. Likewise, in this matter you should move away from a more modernist view point towards a more scriptural one.
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« Reply #298 on: February 18, 2009, 01:11:18 PM »

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

Holy Synod of Jerusalem, 1672
Chapter VI, Decree XVIII


In Greek:

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

In Latin:

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


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

Luberti this is a great reference. Can you point me to the source? I have often heard that during this time period the Eastern Orthodox Church was much more similar to the Catholic Church.
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« Reply #299 on: February 18, 2009, 01:14:50 PM »

Explain your understanding of "justification".

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Early Eastern Voices on Justification:

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

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

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

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

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

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« Reply #300 on: February 18, 2009, 01:18:47 PM »

Wow this discussion is getting harder and harder...
As I just said, I DON'T DENY that God punishes us. But I admit that the way Mickey interpreted this punishment is almost the same that mine: sinning we cast ourselves outside of Paradise. Did God really punish Adam and Eve? No. He said what the consequences of sin were, yet they sinned and sinning they expelled themselves from Heaven. The same we do everytime we sin.

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

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

In Christ   Alex
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« Reply #301 on: February 18, 2009, 01:19:06 PM »

JUSTIFICATION: Furthermore, through justification, God literal makes us Just. He doesn't just imagine that we are but, rather, through pour of Sanctifying (deifying) grace into our souls, God makes us literally holy. Not perfect mind you since we still have concupiscience and when we sin we damage this holiness but he changes us and begins the process of theosis through justification.
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« Reply #302 on: February 18, 2009, 01:19:19 PM »

So you don't agree with the bible? I see....

No, you do not see....and if you claim that I do not believe in the Bible one more time...I will report you for your insults.
Mickey I'm not trying to insult you. You have stated over and over again that you don't think God punishes but the bible clearly teaches that he does. So you disagree with the bible on this matter. How is that an insult? I would hope that we could deal with these issues online like adults.
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« Reply #303 on: February 18, 2009, 01:26:47 PM »

If you do believe in the bible, then submitt to it and accept the scriptural teachings that God does punish us and that its not fun but that he does it for out own good.

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

"God is good, without passions and unchangeable. One who understands that it is sound and true to affirm that God does not change might very well ask: `how, then, is it possible to speak of God as rejoicing over those who are good, becoming merciful to those who know Him and, on the other hand, shunning the wicked and being angry with sinners?' We must reply to this, that God neither rejoices nor grows angry, because to rejoice and to be angered are passions. Nor is God won over by gifts from those who know Him, for that would mean that He is moved by pleasure. It is not possible for the Godhead to have the sensation of pleasure or displeasure from the condition of humans. God is good, and He bestows only blessings, and never causes harm, but remains always the same. If we humans, however, remain good by means of resembling Him, we are united to Him, but if we become evil by losing our resemblance to God, we are separated from Him. By living in a holy manner, we unite ourselves to God; by becoming evil, however, we become at enmity with Him. It is not that He arbitrarily becomes angry with us, but that our sins prevent God from shining within us, and exposes us to the demons who make us suffer. If through prayer and acts of compassionate love, we gain freedom from our sins, this does not mean that we have won God over and made Him change, but rather that by means of our actions and turning to God, we have been healed of our wickedness, and returned to the enjoyment of God's goodness. To say that God turns away from the sinful is like saying that the sun hides itself from the blind".
(St. Antony the Great, Cap. 150).
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« Reply #304 on: February 18, 2009, 01:31:16 PM »

I didn't call you a modernist. I just think you have one particularly modernist view.

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

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« Reply #305 on: February 18, 2009, 01:38:20 PM »

Please stay on topic everyone and stay away from personal attacks.  This thread will be locked if it continues to spiral out of control, which is a shame, since many Orthodox members have a skewed view of the official RC teachings of purgatory and many converts from Roman Catholicism struggle with the "condition" of purgatory during their conversion and well after.  This thread should be used to remove misconceptions and for a civil discussion/debate.

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« Reply #306 on: February 18, 2009, 01:41:05 PM »

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

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

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

Does not seem to leave much room for purgatory.  Wink
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« Reply #307 on: February 18, 2009, 01:51:12 PM »

You have stated over and over again that you don't think God punishes but the bible clearly teaches that he does. So you disagree with the bible on this matter.

Your undersatnding is skewed.  Read St Antony's quote again.
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« Reply #308 on: February 18, 2009, 01:54:25 PM »

The so-called Panorthodox Synod of Jerusalem (sometimes called of Bethlehem) was indeed never applied.

And if I am not mistaken, I believe that I read somewhere that many things from the Synod were recanted.
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« Reply #309 on: February 18, 2009, 01:54:43 PM »

You have stated over and over again that you don't think God punishes but the bible clearly teaches that he does. So you disagree with the bible on this matter.

Your undersatnding is skewed.  Read St Antony's quote again.
I'm not concerned with St. Antony's quote. I am concerned with the scriptures clearly and plainly states. I am still waiting for you to address that matter.
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« Reply #310 on: February 18, 2009, 01:57:26 PM »

JUSTIFICATION: Furthermore, through justification, God literal makes us Just.

If I am not mistaken, The Orthodox typically describe salvation in terms not of justification, but as deification (theosis).
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« Reply #311 on: February 18, 2009, 01:57:39 PM »

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

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

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

Does not seem to leave much room for purgatory.  Wink

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

So that begs the question, how do we know that we are Justified? And more so, how do we remain within God's Grace? At what point do we make a shipwreck of our salvation? And what can we do about that?
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« Reply #312 on: February 18, 2009, 02:00:04 PM »

If you do believe in the bible, then submitt to it and accept the scriptural teachings that God does punish us and that its not fun but that he does it for out own good.

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


I think you may have this backward. I am merely supporiting the clear and plain meaning of scripture. To do otherwise would be to twist it. Thus, I have twisted nothing but, rather, adhere to the scriptural teaching that God
1. Punishes us.
2. Its painful/not fun.[
3. That it is for my own good.
I am not sure what you have to base your arguements on but I have provided objective support for my view.
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« Reply #313 on: February 18, 2009, 02:00:09 PM »

JUSTIFICATION: Furthermore, through justification, God literal makes us Just.

If I am not mistaken, The Orthodox typically describe salvation in terms not of justification, but as deification (theosis).
That is true. The Catholic Church uses both images to describe salvation.
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« Reply #314 on: February 18, 2009, 02:00:19 PM »

I'm not concerned with St. Antony's quote. I am concerned with the scriptures clearly and plainly states. I am still waiting for you to address that matter.

I have addressed it. Alex has addressed it also. If you do not accept it--so be it. St Antony the great explains it perfectly--much better than I ever could.
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