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Author Topic: Did Judas Repent? (Matt 27:3)  (Read 11401 times) Average Rating: 0
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« Reply #45 on: May 01, 2008, 04:27:48 PM »

One of the Optina elders said that the "secret" to happiness is to "want what God gives". I realize that doesn't necessarily answer the question, but it does shed some light on the subject.

Welcome to the forum SolEX01. Wink

Thank you.   Smiley
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« Reply #46 on: May 01, 2008, 04:28:44 PM »

I've had all night and most of today to ponder this discussion and I believe that Jesus opened the gates of Paradise and the penitent Thief was the first to enter Paradise even though he neither betrayed Christ nor initially believed in Christ.  Such confusion and ambivalence has resulted in erratic dogmas like Purgatory.

Again, most of these posters sound like the doubting Thomas in that they don't believe that Judas went permanently to Hades as a final judged soul and as the "Son of Perdition."  The demand for evidence sounds just like the doubting Thomas....

If Doubting Thomases are met with the Truth, they will become the most fervent proclaimers of the Faith.  The revelation to Thomas contains one of the very few instances of calling Jesus "My Lord and My God."
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« Reply #47 on: May 01, 2008, 04:51:33 PM »

If Doubting Thomases are met with the Truth, they will become the most fervent proclaimers of the Faith.  The revelation to Thomas contains one of the very few instances of calling Jesus "My Lord and My God."

The Samaritan Woman accepted Christ as her Savior and the fulfillment of the Old Testament quicker vs. resolving the issue about the status of Judas Iscariot.  Smiley
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« Reply #48 on: May 01, 2008, 04:57:34 PM »

The Samaritan Woman accepted Christ as her Savior and the fulfillment of the Old Testament quicker vs. resolving the issue about the status of Judas Iscariot.  Smiley 

I'm not worried about fast or slow - the result (i.e. coming to the knowledge of the Truth, and sharing it with the world) is priority #1.
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« Reply #49 on: May 01, 2008, 04:58:31 PM »

Discussion on praying for those who committed suicide has been split off:

http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,15785.0.html
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« Reply #50 on: May 01, 2008, 10:35:06 PM »

IMO: The only intelligent answer that anybody can give to this question is: "I don't know!"

Did his mind snap when he realized what he had done?

Was his suicide a deranged form of penance?

Did he repent of his suicide between the time he hanged himself and the time that he died?

Was the betrayal by Judas an essential element in the passion of Christ?

Was Judas's intention the crucifixion of Jesus or an attempt to force His hand in establishing the new messianic kingdom?
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« Reply #51 on: May 01, 2008, 11:23:31 PM »

Man, oh man...to those entertaining the idea of Judas being redeemed...boy, would I love to see the look on your faces during attendance at a Coptic Orthodox Church for the Holy Thursday and Friday Eve Pascha Week services.
I would love to see the faces of the Byzantine Orthodox if they walk into a Coptic or Ethiopian church on 25th June when you are celebrating the Feast of Saint Pontius Pilate.
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« Reply #52 on: May 01, 2008, 11:32:03 PM »

Again, most of these posters sound like the doubting Thomas in that they don't believe that Judas went permanently to Hades as a final judged soul and as the "Son of Perdition."  The demand for evidence sounds just like the doubting Thomas....
*
I think that many of are are not willing to limit the divine love.  We recoil from stating with any certainty that Judas is in hell because that means we are pre-empting both the divine love and the divine judgement.  It is better to say that we don't know rather than to claim that we do and risk being wrong.
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« Reply #53 on: May 01, 2008, 11:35:34 PM »

Was Judas's intention the crucifixion of Jesus or an attempt to force His hand in establishing the new messianic kingdom?

I have been thinking about this, too - and speculating (a dangerous practice). Smiley

If Judas was the Zealot he is claimed to be, he would had high expectations of a Messianic Kingdom. This might answer the questions as to, firstly, why he betrayed Christ and, secondly, why he was so devastated by the outcome.

If Judas believed Christ to be the promised Messiah he would have been quite disappointed with His message of brotherly love. The Jews of the first century were expecting a Warrior King to wipe out their oppressors. Judas must have known of Christ's Power and in betraying Him, perhaps he was expecting to force His Hand. Would he truly have expected Christ to be crucified? Isn't it more likely that he was expecting Christ to turn His Power on His enemies, wipe out all opposition and establish the Messianic Kingdom?

Yes, Judas was the ultimate betrayer, but his subsequent despair, his actions with the priests after Christ's arrest, and suicide seem to be the actions of a man who was shocked by the outcome of what he had done. I suspect that in some way he repented of what he had done and couldn't live with the horror of it.

But, as I said, this is all speculation - and we really don't know what was going through his mind.
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« Reply #54 on: May 01, 2008, 11:36:34 PM »

Pontius Pilate killed himself a few years after the crucifixation of Christ.  His wife is a saint but not Pilate.

I would love to see the faces of the Byzantine Orthodox if they walk into a Coptic or Ethiopian church on 25th June when you are celebrating the Feast of Saint Pontius Pilate.

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« Reply #55 on: May 01, 2008, 11:44:09 PM »

*
I think that many of are are not willing to limit the divine love.  We recoil from stating with any certainty that Judas is in hell because that means we are pre-empting both the divine love and the divine judgement.  It is better to say that we don't know rather than to claim that we do and risk being wrong.

Well said.

I came upon this beautiful quote from one of St Isaac homilies. St Isaac believed in apokatostasis, so it might not be totally appropriate to the thread. But I thought it so lovely that I would share it, anyway.

I am of the opinion that He is going to manifest some wonderful outcome, a matter of immense and ineffable compassion on the part of the glorious Creator, with respect to the ordering of this difficult matter of [Gehenna's] torment: out of it the wealth of His love and power and wisdom will become known all the more - and so will the insistent might of the waves of His goodness.

It is not [the way of] the compassionate Maker to create rational beings in order to deliever them over mercilessly to unending affliction.
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« Reply #56 on: May 02, 2008, 12:15:02 AM »

I would love to see the faces of the Byzantine Orthodox if they walk into a Coptic or Ethiopian church on 25th June when you are celebrating the Feast of Saint Pontius Pilate.

First of all, the Coptic Orthodox Church doesn't have a feast of Pontius Pilate.

Second of all, the Ethiopian Orthodox commemoration of Pontius Pilate is based upon a particular tradition of his life which does not hold that he ever fell into despair or that he ever killed himself, but which, on the contrary holds that he repented and was martyred. So really, I don't see how this comment bears any relevance to anything. We all hold a common tradition as to the activities of Judas--there is no dispute about how his life ended; the Scriptures are clear on the point.

Quote
We recoil from stating with any certainty that Judas is in hell because that means we are pre-empting both the divine love and the divine judgement

I know this wasn't directed at me, but I would just like to emphasise what should already be implicit from my previous post, viz., that in our case we are not pre-empting the divine judgment because the divine judgment has already been declared and made known to the Church through spokespersons like St John Chrysostom and those inspired to compose our Pascha hymns and Gospel expositions, for the edification of future believers--so we can sharply appreciate the gravity of the consequences of his activities so as to avoid such betrayal in the course of our own lives, and more importantly, so as to always trust in God's Divine Mercy and Love even if we happen to so fall into such betrayal in one way or another.
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« Reply #57 on: May 02, 2008, 01:13:16 AM »

Looking at the quote below - at least Adam rose from the dead whether realistically or symbolically which leaves Judas lumped with the unrighteousness Catholic Popes.

In the history of mankind there are 3 falls: The fall of Adam, of Judas the Iscariot and that of the Pope. The essence of falling into sin is always the same: the desire to become God by oneself. In this manner, a man insensibly equates himself with the devil, because he also wants to become God by himself to replace God with himself...The fall of the Pope lies exactly in this very thing; to want to replace the God-man with the man..." Fr Justin Popovich of Serbia

http://www.orthodox.net/gleanings/roman_catholicism.html

Looking at the second quote - Judas went to perdition permanently.

"And yet, within a short span of time an exchange took place: the thief entered the Kingdom, while the Disciple went to perdition"

http://www.orthodoxinfo.com/praxis/homily_anastasios.aspx
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« Reply #58 on: May 02, 2008, 01:52:05 AM »

Looking at the quote below - at least Adam rose from the dead whether realistically or symbolically which leaves Judas lumped with the unrighteousness Catholic Popes.

In the history of mankind there are 3 falls: The fall of Adam, of Judas the Iscariot and that of the Pope. The essence of falling into sin is always the same: the desire to become God by oneself. In this manner, a man insensibly equates himself with the devil, because he also wants to become God by himself to replace God with himself...The fall of the Pope lies exactly in this very thing; to want to replace the God-man with the man..." Fr Justin Popovich of Serbia

http://www.orthodox.net/gleanings/roman_catholicism.html
So now you're bringing the popes of Rome into this discussion. Roll Eyes  How is the fall of the papacy even relevant to what we're talking about here? Huh  I'm sorry, but I just don't see the connection.

Quote
Looking at the second quote - Judas went to perdition permanently.

"And yet, within a short span of time an exchange took place: the thief entered the Kingdom, while the Disciple went to perdition"

http://www.orthodoxinfo.com/praxis/homily_anastasios.aspx
So, how is the opinion of one single hieromartyr, venerable as he may truly be, authoritative for us?  Why is it so important that you prove to us that Judas Iscariot is suffering for eternity in hell?  I don't see anyone here asserting with equal force that he truly did repent and has been received into God's Kingdom.  I just see people admittedly speculating on both sides but ultimately saying, "I really don't know, but I pray that at the last day the Lord will have mercy on Judas."  What's wrong with desiring that God have mercy on the chief of sinners?  Is this desire in and of itself a heresy against which the truth must be defended?
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« Reply #59 on: May 02, 2008, 01:53:47 AM »

It must be comforting to have absolute certainty about everything including the condition of the departed.
All I have is faith.
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« Reply #60 on: May 02, 2008, 01:59:38 AM »

It must be comforting to have absolute certainty about everything including the condition of the departed.
All I have is faith.

No absolute certainty was ever required - I have faith as well and I fell into the trap of trying to prove the unprovable.   Smiley 
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« Reply #61 on: May 02, 2008, 02:02:16 AM »

"And what is a merciful heart? It is the hearts burning for the sake of the entire creation, for men, for birds, for animals, for demons and for every created thing; and by the recollection and sight of them the eyes of a merciful man pour forth abundant tears. From the strong and vehement mercy which grips his heart and from his great compassion, his heart is humbled and he cannot bear to hear or see any injury or slight sorrow in creation. For this reason he continually offers up tearful prayer, even for irrational beasts, for the enemies of the truth and for those who harm him, that they be protected and receive mercy. And in like manner he even prays for the family of reptiles because of the great compassion that burns in his heart without measure in the likeness of God."
-St. Isaac of Nineveh, Homily 8

I don't know how I missed this post, but as I was going through the thread I discovered it. Belatedly I thank you for this beautiful quote from St Isaac.

Quote
Judas, like Peter and each of us, have betrayed Christ at one point or another.  Rather than damn Judas to Hades, let us instead offer up prayer that he too may experience the deluge of Christ's bountiful mercy.

I agree most wholeheartedly.
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« Reply #62 on: May 02, 2008, 02:04:53 AM »

As ozgeorge mentioned - all he has is faith and I've believed for a long time that Judas went straight to his own personal Hell and perhaps the analysis would have backed up that claim.  Perhaps my newness on the forum has resulted in being carried away in proving the unprovable where faith and grace suffice.  That sounds like a reasonable answer; after all, staying quiet is much harder than saying, "I don't know."

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« Reply #63 on: May 02, 2008, 02:17:13 AM »

"Once, the Abba Anthony was visited by certain elders and found Abba Joseph with him.  In his desire to test them, the elder quoted an excerpt from the Scriptures, and asked the younger visitors about the meaning of that excerpt.  Every one of them gave their reply, to the best of their ability. To each of them, the elder replied “You didn’t find it”.  Finally, he asked Abba Joseph: “What do you have to say about this excerpt?”  He replied: “I don’t know”.  Abba Anthony then said: “At least Abba Joseph has found the path, because he said ‘I don’t know’.”   
(From the Gerontikon)
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« Reply #64 on: May 02, 2008, 04:09:48 AM »

I just wanted to relate a thought that just came to mind:

It seems that those leaning to one direction or another on the question of Judas are focused on two different matters. Those wanting to entertain the idea that he repented after death and that he is potentially saved seem focused on the actual person of Judas, whereas those of us more inclined to a negative picture of Judas (as he is undoubtedly depicted in our patristic and liturgical texts) are more concerned with the nature of his actions, and their implications and consequences.

It would be a problem if one "side" presumed that the other "side" shared their focus. This would lead one "side" to falsely accuse the other side of being uncharitable, judgemental and pharisaic, and the other "side" to respond with false accusations of "liberalism."

The homily of St John Chrysostom read during the Coptic Great Thursday service strikes a nice balance I think. I don't think any of us would charge St John Chrysostom with being disingenuos; he means what he says when he asks us to lament over Judas. Indeed, the atmosphere intended to be created by the Coptic rites/hymns of Great Thursday is one of somberness/melancholy, as Fr. Anthony explains, rather than one of animosity/anger/hatred.
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« Reply #65 on: March 08, 2009, 10:22:51 AM »


Looking at the second quote - Judas went to perdition permanently.


Dear SolEx,

We cannot be certain of that.  There is a Church teaching that very soon after Judas arrived in Hell, less than 24 hours after he hung himself in remorse, the Saviour Himself arrived there and completely emptied it of all humans, leaving behind only the devil and the demons.

 
His Grace Bishop Hilarion Alfeyev has lectured on this.

See his "The Descent of Christ into Hades in Eastern and Western Theological Traditions"
A lecture delivered at St Mary's Cathedral, Minneapolis, USA, on 5 November 2002

http://orthodoxeurope.org/page/11/1/5.aspx
[For full article]

Extract:
__________________________________________
The descent of Christ into Hades is one of the most mysterious, enigmatic
and inexplicable events in New Testament history. In today's Christian
world, this event is understood differently. Liberal Western theology
rejects altogether any possibility for speaking of the descent of Christ
into Hades literally, arguing that the scriptural texts on this theme should
be understood metaphorically. The traditional Catholic doctrine insists that
after His death on the cross Christ descended to hell only to deliver the
Old Testament righteous from it. A similar understanding is quite widespread
among Orthodox Christians.

On the other hand, the New Testament speaks of the preaching of Christ in
hell as addressed to the unrepentant sinners: 'For Christ also died for sins
once for all, the righteous for the unrighteous, that he might bring us to
God, being put to death in the flesh but made alive in the spirit; in which
he went and preached to the spirit in prison, who formerly did not obey,
when God's patience waited.

However, many Church Fathers and liturgical texts of the Orthodox Church
repeatedly underline that having descended to hell, Christ opened the way to
salvation for all people, not only the Old Testament righteous. The descent
of Christ into Hades is perceived as an event of cosmic significance
involving all people without exception. They also speak about the victory of
Christ over death, the full devastation of hell and that after the descent
of Christ into Hades there was nobody left there except for the devil and
demons.
_________________________________________

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« Reply #66 on: March 08, 2009, 10:37:45 AM »

What does the Church teach about the hope of forgiveness for souls who have taken their own lives?

A soul who takes his/her own life has forsaken God.  A priest will not allow a funeral of a person who committed suicide unless proof of a mental illness can be provided by a psychiatrist or other medical professional.  Such "economia" is appropriate and would not deny a person an opportunity for forgiveness and/or salvation depending on how that person lived his/her life up to the point of suicide.

Dear SolEx,

I wonder if you would feel able to pray this prayer for suicides in the Akathist for the Repose of Those who have Fallen Asleep...

Forgive, O Lord, those who have died without repentance.  Save those who
have committed suicide in the darkness of their mind, that the flame of
their sinfulness may be extinguished in the ocean of Thy grace.

            O Lord of unutterable Love, remember Thy servants who have
                        fallen asleep.
Ikos 5

http://users.sisqtel.net/williams/akathist-repose.html

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« Reply #67 on: March 08, 2009, 01:12:05 PM »

^ Father, Why wait 10 months to dredge this up?

Judas had his chance to repent when he was in Hades with Christ.  Apparently, Judas refused and he's still there.

To answer your question ... I can pray the prayer you mentioned; However, I do not know of an Orthodox Church anywhere in the USA which has performed the Akathist you describe.

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« Reply #68 on: March 08, 2009, 06:20:25 PM »

We cannot be certain of that.  There is a Church teaching that very soon after Judas arrived in Hell, less than 24 hours after he hung himself in remorse, the Saviour Himself arrived there and completely emptied it of all humans, leaving behind only the devil and the demons.
Is this Church teaching or just a permissible theologoumen?
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« Reply #69 on: March 08, 2009, 06:21:20 PM »

Judas had his chance to repent when he was in Hades with Christ.  Apparently, Judas refused and he's still there.
How is this apparent?  What evidence makes it so?
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« Reply #70 on: March 08, 2009, 06:26:03 PM »

Quote
Is this Church teaching or just a permissible theologoumen?

Since according to Eastern Orthodox theology hell doesn't exist yet, I can't see how it'd be permissable...

Though that brings up another question. If Christ emptied hades (not hell), then why are people still held there, according to Orthodox theology? Did they come out and go back? Or did just some of them empty out?
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« Reply #71 on: March 08, 2009, 06:51:52 PM »

^ Father, Why wait 10 months to dredge this up?
 

The Forum's software manufactures a list of four or five related topics which it places at the bottom of a thread (in this case if was the Forgiveness thread.)   So I imagine that the Forum's creators are thinking some people may want to look at these related threads and add comments.  The Mods also suggest that people look at reviving threads which have the same focus instead of creating new ones on the same topic.  And in this case I thought that I had some comments to make which would be helpful to you.  I hope this explains.


Quote
However, I do not know of an Orthodox Church anywhere in the USA which has performed the Akathist you describe.

The Akathist is printed at Jordanville Monastery and has an episcopal Blessing.  It is sold there in the Monastery bookshop and presumably also in other Russian Church Abroad kiosks and bookshops.  Its performace in a USA church?  I do not have such details on USA church life and do not know.   I really have no idea which Akathists are performed in churches there.
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« Reply #72 on: March 08, 2009, 06:58:56 PM »

We cannot be certain of that.  There is a Church teaching that very soon after Judas arrived in Hell, less than 24 hours after he hung himself in remorse, the Saviour Himself arrived there and completely emptied it of all humans, leaving behind only the devil and the demons.
Is this Church teaching or just a permissible theologoumen?

Bishop Hilarion (a rising star of a theologian) sees it as permissible Church teaching, supported by our liturgical tradition and our patristic tradition.

http://orthodoxeurope.org/page/11/1/5.aspx

A theologoumenon?  I don't know. Possibly.  Since theologoumena have a plus and a negative side, the opposing theologoumenon would be what SolEx holds - namely, that Judas is irrevocably in hell.


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« Reply #73 on: March 08, 2009, 07:11:05 PM »

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Is this Church teaching or just a permissible theologoumen?

Since according to Eastern Orthodox theology hell doesn't exist yet, I can't see how it'd be permissable...

Asteriktos,

Would you please expand on this. From what I understand hell seems to be a personal condition or state rather than an actual place and that some of the reposed would be experiencing a foretaste of such a conditon at the present time. (Horrible thought  Sad) Do you know of a reliable online source on the Orthodoxy teaching on hell?

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« Reply #74 on: March 08, 2009, 07:32:19 PM »

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Is this Church teaching or just a permissible theologoumen?

Since according to Eastern Orthodox theology hell doesn't exist yet, I can't see how it'd be permissable...

There is a complete mishmash of theories and schemes about hell and hades and gehenna and sheol  in modern Orthodoxy, a lot of it occasioned by the writings of Fr Seraphim Rose who wanted to systematize it all.    The confusion comes in when you investigate the schemes of the afterlife and the personal visions and revelations of various Saints and theologians from various centuries and various countries.  They can contradict one another.
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« Reply #75 on: March 08, 2009, 08:25:57 PM »

^ Father, Why wait 10 months to dredge this up?

Judas had his chance to repent when he was in Hades with Christ.  Apparently, Judas refused and he's still there.

To answer your question ... I can pray the prayer you mentioned; However, I do not know of an Orthodox Church anywhere in the USA which has performed the Akathist you describe.



This akathist has been recommended by several Bishops, including mine, His Grace BASIL (Essey) of Witchita and Mid-America in the Antiochian Archdiocese of North America to converts who have parents and grandoarents who have died before  become aware of Orthodoxy. This Akathist would not be normally done within the Church itself, as the Church does not pray publically for those who are not her children.  The purpose of this The Akathist for those who have reposed but are not in the Church; it enables family members to pray for those who never knew the Church and those who have fallen away from the faith (such as a suicide)  in the hope that the mercy of God will be applied to them and grant them rest in the place where there is no sorrow or sighing.

As many people in Salvic and other Churches would tell you, Akathist is a prayer and hymn format, the most popular  version is the original to the Most Holy Theotokos. There are many other Akathists that are prayed primarily in the home  to certain saints and for specific purposes--- Akathist certain purposes.  You may find some of them on this  site: http://www.saintjonah.org/services/akathists.htm

Orthodoxwiki  notes that "An akathist (Greek, akathistos) is a hymn dedicated to a saint, holy event, or one of the persons of the Holy Trinity. The word akathist itself means "not sitting." The akathist par excellence is that written in the 6th century to the Theotokos. In its use as part of the Salutations to the Theotokos service (used in the Byzantine tradition during Great Lent), it is often known by its Greek or Arabic names, Chairetismoi and Madayeh, respectively.

The writing of akathists (occasionally spelled acathist) continues today as part of the general composition of an akolouthia, especially in the Slavic tradition, although not all are widely known nor translated beyond the original language. Isaac E. Lambertsen has done a large amount of translation work, including many different akathists. Most of the newer akathists are pastiche, that is, a generic form imitating the original 6th century akathist into which a particular saint's name is inserted. "  http://orthodoxwiki.org/Akathist

Hoping that you will have a blessed Lenten journey.

Thomas

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« Reply #76 on: March 08, 2009, 08:53:19 PM »

Judas had his chance to repent when he was in Hades with Christ.  Apparently, Judas refused and he's still there.
How is this apparent?  What evidence makes it so?

Does the Orthodox Church commemorate St. Jezebel?  St. Cain?  St. Judas the Iscariot?
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« Reply #77 on: March 08, 2009, 08:59:31 PM »

Sorry, I'm an idiot. Somehow, I repeated a post instead of editing it.  Embarrassed
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« Reply #78 on: March 09, 2009, 01:20:55 AM »

Judas had his chance to repent when he was in Hades with Christ.  Apparently, Judas refused and he's still there.
How is this apparent?  What evidence makes it so?

Does the Orthodox Church commemorate St. Jezebel?  St. Cain?  St. Judas the Iscariot?
Okay, you've lost me here. Huh  How does our refusal to glorify some persons as saints prove that those persons are in hell or Hades or wherever the current place of torment is?  Is the refusal to glorify the same thing as expressed condemnation?  Please consider your answer well before you offer it.
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« Reply #79 on: March 09, 2009, 11:14:31 AM »

Judas had his chance to repent when he was in Hades with Christ.  Apparently, Judas refused and he's still there.
How is this apparent?  What evidence makes it so?

Does the Orthodox Church commemorate St. Jezebel?  St. Cain?  St. Judas the Iscariot?
Okay, you've lost me here. Huh

In this thread, we have talked over each other quite a bit.  Until the thread was resurrected, I can accept that no one knows the state of Judas Iscariot.  However, there are precedents cited with Cain and Jezebel, those who have done evil and for what we know (other than Cain who was concerned about revenge), have never repented of said evil.

How does our refusal to glorify some persons as saints prove that those persons are in hell or Hades or wherever the current place of torment is?  Is the refusal to glorify the same thing as expressed condemnation?  Please consider your answer well before you offer it.

The answer to your question (bolded text) is no.  A quote from Bishop Hilarion (source already cited), focus on the bold text.

Quote
Besides, according to the teaching of the Orthodox Church, the fate of a person after death can be changed through the prayer of the Church. Thus, existence after death has its own dynamics. On the basis of what has been said above, we may say that after death the development of the human person does not cease, for existence after death is not a transfer from a dynamic into a static being, but rather continuation on a new level of that road which a person followed in his lifetime.... Nor do we know if every one will follow Him to the eschatological Heavenly Kingdom when He will become ‘all in all’.

What kind of road is Judas Iscariot likely to follow if he was a zealot and a betrayer in his past lifetime?  Sure, the Church can pray for the mercy of souls for sinners like Judas Iscariot, Jezebel, Cain and countless others except we still don't know if any of the 3 (or more) will follow Christ to the Heavenly Kingdon.

Therefore, the answer remains, "I don't know."   Smiley
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« Reply #80 on: March 09, 2009, 08:17:42 PM »

^ Father, Why wait 10 months to dredge this up?
 

The Forum's software manufactures a list of four or five related topics which it places at the bottom of a thread (in this case if was the Forgiveness thread.)   So I imagine that the Forum's creators are thinking some people may want to look at these related threads and add comments.  The Mods also suggest that people look at reviving threads which have the same focus instead of creating new ones on the same topic.  And in this case I thought that I had some comments to make which would be helpful to you.  I hope this explains.

I'm glad the system (of related threads stirring interest) worked in this case.
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« Reply #81 on: March 10, 2009, 12:37:35 AM »

^ Father, Why wait 10 months to dredge this up?
 

The Forum's software manufactures a list of four or five related topics which it places at the bottom of a thread (in this case if was the Forgiveness thread.)   So I imagine that the Forum's creators are thinking some people may want to look at these related threads and add comments.  The Mods also suggest that people look at reviving threads which have the same focus instead of creating new ones on the same topic.  And in this case I thought that I had some comments to make which would be helpful to you.  I hope this explains.

I'm glad the system (of related threads stirring interest) worked in this case.

Silly me for believing that Father Ambrose was picking on me, again.   Embarrassed
I agree with cleveland's explanation of the related threads and I apologize, once again, Father Ambrose.   Smiley
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« Reply #82 on: March 10, 2009, 03:03:14 AM »

Silly me for believing that Father Ambrose was picking on me, again.   Embarrassed
Me?!  Picking on you?!    I'm still bruised from the tattoo thread.   Shocked Roll Eyes Shocked

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I agree with cleveland's explanation of the related threads and I apologize, once again, Father Ambrose.   Smiley

SolEx, one of my little missions in life is to free people, in my own bumbling ways and restricted spheres of influence, from the depressing and inhibiting influences of the Catholic and Protestant world as concerns life after death  - I have in mind the Catholic idea of death as a complete fixing point with no more possible progress and other things.  Instead the Orthodox are much more fluid on these matters and will speak of continuing theosis after death, forgiveness of sins and even liberation from hell, the redemption of suicides, etc.  Much of this is really alien to Western Christian thinking and so very liberating when you encounter it in Orthodoxy - in people such as Saint Isaac the Syrian and other holy Fathers, even the old Irish monks from the ancient Church, and, in modern times with His Grace Bishop Hilarion.

I'd like to tell you a special story from an old Russian Patericon but it might cause a meltdown.  Smiley

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« Reply #83 on: March 10, 2009, 03:20:11 AM »

I was reading an article recently by Bishop Hilarion Alfeyev called "Orthodox Worship as a School of Theology", and I came across the following quote:-

Bishop Hilarion: Several years ago I came across a short article in a journal of the Coptic Church where it stated that this Church had decided to remove prayers for those held in hell from its service books, since these prayers “contradict Orthodox teaching”. Puzzled by this article, I decided to ask a representative of the Coptic Church about the reasons for this move. Recently I had the possibility to do so, and a Coptic Metropolitan replied that the decision was made by his Synod because, according their official doctrine, no prayers can help those in hell. I told the metropolitan that in the liturgical practice of the Russian Orthodox Church and other local Orthodox Churches there are prayers for those held in hell, and that we believe in their saving power. This surprised the Metropolitan, and he promised to study this question in more detail.

Here is the original article ...

http://orthodoxeurope.org/page/12/1.aspx

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« Reply #84 on: March 10, 2009, 04:23:49 AM »

What does the Church teach about the hope of forgiveness for souls who have taken their own lives?

A soul who takes his/her own life has forsaken God.  A priest will not allow a funeral of a person who committed suicide unless proof of a mental illness can be provided by a psychiatrist or other medical professional.  Such "economia" is appropriate and would not deny a person an opportunity for forgiveness and/or salvation depending on how that person lived his/her life up to the point of suicide.

Dear SolEx,

I wonder if you would feel able to pray this prayer for suicides in the Akathist for the Repose of Those who have Fallen Asleep...

Forgive, O Lord, those who have died without repentance.  Save those who
have committed suicide in the darkness of their mind, that the flame of
their sinfulness may be extinguished in the ocean of Thy grace.

            O Lord of unutterable Love, remember Thy servants who have
                        fallen asleep.
Ikos 5

http://users.sisqtel.net/williams/akathist-repose.html



That is an interesting akathist.  Does anyone know the history behind this akathist?
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« Reply #85 on: March 10, 2009, 06:09:35 AM »

Just as an aside on the issue of Mental Illness and suicide- anyone who attempts or plans suicide in Australia is legally Mentally Ill.
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« Reply #86 on: March 10, 2009, 11:36:29 AM »

I was reading an article recently by Bishop Hilarion Alfeyev called "Orthodox Worship as a School of Theology", and I came across the following quote:-

Bishop Hilarion: Several years ago I came across a short article in a journal of the Coptic Church where it stated that this Church had decided to remove prayers for those held in hell from its service books, since these prayers “contradict Orthodox teaching”. Puzzled by this article, I decided to ask a representative of the Coptic Church about the reasons for this move. Recently I had the possibility to do so, and a Coptic Metropolitan replied that the decision was made by his Synod because, according their official doctrine, no prayers can help those in hell. I told the metropolitan that in the liturgical practice of the Russian Orthodox Church and other local Orthodox Churches there are prayers for those held in hell, and that we believe in their saving power. This surprised the Metropolitan, and he promised to study this question in more detail.

Here is the original article ...

http://orthodoxeurope.org/page/12/1.aspx

Yes, this has been discussed, debated (in heated ways) a few times before in oc.net.  Pretty much, the Synod has taken a stand based on St. John Chrysostom's teachings among others.  And I have a feeling the Metropolitan he was talking to was HE Metropolitan Bishoy.

HG Bishop Hilarion makes an excellent point.
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« Reply #87 on: March 10, 2009, 04:52:50 PM »

Just as an aside on the issue of Mental Illness and suicide- anyone who attempts or plans suicide in Australia is legally Mentally Ill.
I can see some good reasons for this. Usually it's not a sane thing to do. I can see a scenario in which a truly desperate person might attempt it in order to procure an insanity plea, but I can also imagine several other ways to obtain that would be far easier and far less deadly.
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« Reply #88 on: April 11, 2009, 09:51:34 PM »

Just as an aside on the issue of Mental Illness and suicide- anyone who attempts or plans suicide in Australia is legally Mentally Ill.

George, would this mean that the Australian Churches are willing to offer funeral services for suicides and allow their burial in consecrated ground?

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« Reply #89 on: April 28, 2009, 08:17:53 AM »

I'd like to tell you a special story from an old Russian Patericon but it might cause a meltdown.  Smiley

Come on, Father.  Don't tease us.

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