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Author Topic: Revelation Redux  (Read 1115 times) Average Rating: 0
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Volnutt
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« on: July 31, 2011, 03:20:30 AM »

Revelation 19:10 has been discussed here several times as it relates to veneration of the Saints, but I still can't quite get around what seems to be a clear proscription of, at the very least, bowing to someone other than God (since proskuneo is something of an equivocal term in Orthodox usage which can signify either latria or doulia).
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And I fell at his feet to worship him. But he said to me, “See that you do not do that! I am your fellow servant, and of your brethren who have the testimony of Jesus. Worship God! For the testimony of Jesus is the spirit of prophecy.

It seems like this should be compared with other uses of the word servant in the same book. In 6:11 we see that all martyrs are fellow servants. Maybe not absolutely clear given the Orthodox exegesis of Revelation 19:10.

Quote
Then a white robe was given to each of them; and it was said to them that they should rest a little while longer, until both the number of their fellow servants and their brethren, who would be killed as they were, was completed.

But what about 1:1
Quote
The Revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave Him to show His servants—things which must shortly take place. And He sent and signified it by His angel to His servant John,
It sure looks to me like John (and, by extension, the angel in Chapter 19 and the martyrs in Chapter 6) is here called a servant in the same way that he calls the audience of Revelation servants. So if angels, Apostles, and martyrs are all servants and servants bowing to each other is wrong and if we ordinary believers are also servants-therefore us bowing to angels, Apostles, and martyrs also must be wrong.

I don't want to equivocate here. I know you can't rip two of the same word out of context and interpret it the same way. But within the confines of Revelation, I'm just not sure these three usages of the word "servant" are different at all. Indeed, as far as I can tell, the translators of the NET seem to agree with my argument at any rate.

Is there any further insight from the Greek or something?

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JamesRottnek
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« Reply #1 on: July 31, 2011, 03:46:54 AM »

I think that the key phrase here is not "And I fell at his feet" but rather "to worship him."  If the phrase that mattered most was "And I fell to his fee" then you would certainly be right - because St. John is chastised for bowing before the angel.  However, if the key phrase is "to worship him" then the problem with St. John is that he gave to an angel what was due to God alone - worship, instead of just veneration.
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« Reply #2 on: July 31, 2011, 03:50:33 AM »

Yes, that occurred to me and it definitely makes sense. I don't know if it's the official Orthodox view of this passage though.

Calling all priests, calling all priests!  laugh
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akimori makoto
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« Reply #3 on: July 31, 2011, 04:50:48 AM »

I think that the key phrase here is not "And I fell at his feet" but rather "to worship him."  If the phrase that mattered most was "And I fell to his fee" then you would certainly be right - because St. John is chastised for bowing before the angel.  However, if the key phrase is "to worship him" then the problem with St. John is that he gave to an angel what was due to God alone - worship, instead of just veneration.

I have always interpreted this passage in this manner.

It has to mean this, otherwise saluting the flag, bowing to the judge in court and using honorific language towards elders/social betters would all constitute idolatry.

I think of veneration as hyper-respect, not hypo-worship, if that makes sense?
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« Reply #4 on: July 31, 2011, 05:05:50 AM »

Here is something to knock the socks off everybody  ~  the Worship of the Saints!!

Semantics come into it.  Speakers of British English can still speak of the worship of the Saints without falling into the error of adoring them.


Go to message 56
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http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,25351.msg397881.html#msg397881
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akimori makoto
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« Reply #5 on: July 31, 2011, 05:07:32 AM »

Here is something to knock the socks off everybody  ~  the Worship of the Saints!!

Semantics come into it.  Speakers of British English can still speak of the worship of the Saints without falling into the error of adoring them.


Go to message 56
at
http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,25351.msg397881.html#msg397881

Father, bless.

Do your lawyers still call your magistrates "your Worship?"

We've swapped to "your Honour" because too many people were scandalised by the former phrase.
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« Reply #6 on: July 31, 2011, 05:16:53 AM »

Here is something to knock the socks off everybody  ~  the Worship of the Saints!!

Semantics come into it.  Speakers of British English can still speak of the worship of the Saints without falling into the error of adoring them.


Go to message 56
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http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,25351.msg397881.html#msg397881

Father, bless.

Do your lawyers still call your magistrates "your Worship?"

We've swapped to "your Honour" because too many people were scandalised by the former phrase.

Yes, you still hear lawyers in our courts saying:  "As Your Worship pleases" and "May it please Your Worship."  And you will find phrases such as "The matter is being adjudicated before the Worshipful Timothy McLenaghin."

Mayors are also addressed as "Your Worship" and referred to as "His Worship" or "Her Worship."
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akimori makoto
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« Reply #7 on: July 31, 2011, 05:20:08 AM »

Here is something to knock the socks off everybody  ~  the Worship of the Saints!!

Semantics come into it.  Speakers of British English can still speak of the worship of the Saints without falling into the error of adoring them.


Go to message 56
at
http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,25351.msg397881.html#msg397881

Father, bless.

Do your lawyers still call your magistrates "your Worship?"

We've swapped to "your Honour" because too many people were scandalised by the former phrase.

Yes, you still hear lawyers in our courts saying:  "As Your Worship pleases" and "May it please Your Worship."  And you will find phrases such as "The matter is being adjudicated before the Worshipful Timothy McLenaghin."

Mayors are also addressed as "Your Worship" and referred to as "His Worship" or "Her Worship."

God defend New Zealand.
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« Reply #8 on: July 31, 2011, 01:25:03 PM »

I think of veneration as hyper-respect, not hypo-worship, if that makes sense?
It does in a sense.
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Volnutt
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« Reply #9 on: July 31, 2011, 01:25:41 PM »

Here is something to knock the socks off everybody  ~  the Worship of the Saints!!

Semantics come into it.  Speakers of British English can still speak of the worship of the Saints without falling into the error of adoring them.


Go to message 56
at
http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,25351.msg397881.html#msg397881
Yep.
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« Reply #10 on: July 31, 2011, 03:17:20 PM »

The footnotes in the OSB agree. The problem was the worship and St. John, being human, just made an error and was corrected. The bowing down wasn't the problem, but the worship. You can read, many times, throughout the Bible of people showing reverence for the prophets by bowing down to them.
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« Reply #11 on: July 31, 2011, 04:44:22 PM »

Mayors are also addressed as "Your Worship" and referred to as "His Worship" or "Her Worship."
Here in Canada as well.

I've been told that the origin is "worth-ship", and was secular in meaning. Religious use seems to be a later (but not by much) development.
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akimori makoto
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« Reply #12 on: July 31, 2011, 08:10:04 PM »

Mayors are also addressed as "Your Worship" and referred to as "His Worship" or "Her Worship."
Here in Canada as well.

I've been told that the origin is "worth-ship", and was secular in meaning. Religious use seems to be a later (but not by much) development.

I love these little reminders that Canada still shares so much with the non-USA Anglosphere. They are becoming increasingly rare.
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akimori makoto
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« Reply #13 on: July 31, 2011, 08:12:42 PM »

I think of veneration as hyper-respect, not hypo-worship, if that makes sense?
It does in a sense.

What I mean is that everyone gets their knickers in a knot over the veneration directed to the saints being too close to the adoration/worship paid to God.

This is a mental trap which is quite dangerous, in my opinion.

Rather than thinking of the veneration directed to the saints being some form of quasi-adoration, I think of it as the same respect I pay to a judge in court or to a revered national hero, only times one thousand (or other arbitrarily large number).

Of course, in venerating the saints we also adore the work of God in them (for the Divine Energies are God, viz: St Gregory Palamas), but this is not the same thing as quasi-adoration.
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« Reply #14 on: July 31, 2011, 10:07:05 PM »

Right. Of course to me, it still "feels" like adoration, if that makes sense. I suppose though I've always had a bit of a Jehovah's Witness/Quaker instinct when it comes to things like saluting the flag. Sad Though I wish I didn't.

Of course, some of my Protestant friends would say I'm just rationalizing and if it feels idolatrous, it is.  Tongue
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akimori makoto
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« Reply #15 on: July 31, 2011, 10:33:30 PM »

Right. Of course to me, it still "feels" like adoration, if that makes sense. I suppose though I've always had a bit of a Jehovah's Witness/Quaker instinct when it comes to things like saluting the flag. Sad Though I wish I didn't.

Of course, some of my Protestant friends would say I'm just rationalizing and if it feels idolatrous, it is.  Tongue

Sure, and the Japanese (amongst others) commit idolatry roughtly seventeen billion times a day with all the bowing they do -- including the Christians.

I'm glad you're at least aware of how much of your feelings are due to cultural programming.
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« Reply #16 on: July 31, 2011, 10:39:22 PM »

If we follow this train of thought, we may be led to think that people in DC worship pointy columns and that in times past, all presidents sat on giant marble chairs.  Smiley
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« Reply #17 on: July 31, 2011, 10:41:45 PM »

Right. Of course to me, it still "feels" like adoration, if that makes sense. I suppose though I've always had a bit of a Jehovah's Witness/Quaker instinct when it comes to things like saluting the flag. Sad Though I wish I didn't.

Of course, some of my Protestant friends would say I'm just rationalizing and if it feels idolatrous, it is.  Tongue

Sure, and the Japanese (amongst others) commit idolatry roughtly seventeen billion times a day with all the bowing they do -- including the Christians.

I'm glad you're at least aware of how much of your feelings are due to cultural programming.
Hehe, good point.

I wonder though, why would John worship an angel? It seems like out of anyone in the Church, he would know better. Or maybe it was a lesson directed to the same crowd of semi-Gnostics as in Colossians?
If we follow this train of thought, we may be led to think that people in DC worship pointy columns and that in times past, all presidents sat on giant marble chairs.  Smiley
lol
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akimori makoto
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« Reply #18 on: July 31, 2011, 11:11:27 PM »

Shouldn't Peter have known that circumcision is not necessary?
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« Reply #19 on: July 31, 2011, 11:22:26 PM »

Shouldn't Peter have known that circumcision is not necessary?
Cute pun.
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« Reply #20 on: July 31, 2011, 11:24:03 PM »

Shouldn't Peter have known that circumcision is not necessary?
Touche.
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