Author Topic: Will God take us to task regarding heretical beliefs???  (Read 1800 times)

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Offline Irenaeus07

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Will God take us to task regarding heretical beliefs???
« on: December 31, 2008, 05:40:17 AM »
QUESTION:
All these heretical beliefs (some are clearer than others), is this something that God will judge us by on the day of judgment??? (Will God say, "Well Irenaeus on this particular issue you had a little bit of Arianism going on here and in that issue you had a little bit of nestorianism going on here, and in that particular thing you had a little Gnostism going on there, I don't think I can accept you into my kingdom.")

From my experience with talking with religious people in general, they don't know all these particulars of theology.  Will God judge us by these particulars or is this something the Church uses to distinction things in the physical world???  It seems to involve very technical vocabulary knowing the definition of person, essense and how they relate to each other, which in my opinion seems quite confusing at times, and being that most of these things concerning theology are in reality a Mystery (ie we really don't know the particulars because Jesus and His disciples never really spelled them out), will God judge us by the particulars set up by Church???  And what is the proof that God will judge us by these particulars??? 

I personally don't think God will judge us by these particulars.  Who has the time study all these particulars concerning theology???

Can you reach Theosis harboring a heretical belief???

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Offline recent convert

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Re: Will God take us to task regarding heretical beliefs???
« Reply #1 on: December 31, 2008, 08:00:24 AM »
I think the best thing is to not drive yourself crazy with info overload and do your best to try to live and practise your faith in the basics. The basics being stated in the Creed, the 10 commandments, the 2 great commandments, the Beatitudes, prayer, fasting, alms giving, confession, the Eucharist and careful reading of the Bible (emphasis on the NT) and writings of church fathers (like St. Maximos the confessor).
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Offline ialmisry

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Re: Will God take us to task regarding heretical beliefs???
« Reply #2 on: December 31, 2008, 09:54:44 AM »
I think the best thing is to not drive yourself crazy with info overload and do your best to try to live and practise your faith in the basics. The basics being stated in the Creed, the 10 commandments, the 2 great commandments, the Beatitudes, prayer, fasting, alms giving, confession, the Eucharist and careful reading of the Bible (emphasis on the NT) and writings of church fathers (like St. Maximos the confessor).

I'd recommend St. Ignatius and St. Athanasius and the like.  St. Maximos gets complicated.

I remember being told that the Fathers are such and such percentage Orthodox (St. John being c. 90%, St. Augustine 33%,etc.).  A moment's thought, it made sense: only Christ got it 100%.
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Online PeterTheAleut

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Re: Will God take us to task regarding heretical beliefs???
« Reply #3 on: December 31, 2008, 12:38:46 PM »
Personally, I don't think God will judge us in any juridical sense for how closely our beliefs follow revealed truth.  To me, it's more like this:  that heretical beliefs will hinder our growth in theosis and may even derail us.
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Offline scamandrius

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Re: Will God take us to task regarding heretical beliefs???
« Reply #4 on: December 31, 2008, 02:21:17 PM »
St. Isaac the Syrian was near Nestorian in his Christololgy.  St. Gregory of Nyssa was downright wrong when he, like Origen, posited a universal salvation, even for Satan!  St. Augustine was wrong on his teachings on grace and man's responsibility.  Yet, we recognize that all of them and more enjoy the countenance of God and the other saints since they have reposed.  God saves whom He wishes and He doesn't do it by checking off boxes on your application, like how many heresies you believed in etc. ,to get to heaven.  His mercy endureth forever. 
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Offline Justin Kissel

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Re: Will God take us to task regarding heretical beliefs???
« Reply #5 on: January 02, 2009, 12:40:21 AM »
I think this is a very good question, especially for people who are discussing theology in such a public way as we are (on a message board). I hope more people give their opinion on this matter.

Quote
All these heretical beliefs (some are clearer than others), is this something that God will judge us by on the day of judgment???

I think part of it has to do with how you came by the belief, and also how much you publicize it and how much influence you have. For instance, if you were reading a known heretic and picked up a heresy, I would think there'd be less leeway than if you were reading a recognized saint and picked up a heretical thought. Also, as the Scripture says, those who presume to teach "shall receive a stricter judgment." (James 3:1) I've wondered why someone like Origen got condemned, while someone like Gregory of Nyssa remained a saint. I don't know the full answer to that, but I think at least part of it probably has to do with how much influence each had. That is to say, Origenism caused major disturbances in the early Church, while we don't find people getting into arguments and fights over what St. Gregory of Nyssa taught. Thus, because Origen's ideas had more influence and a greater effect, Origen was also held to a higher standard and received a stricter judgment. Meanwhile, anything unseemly in Gregory of Nyssa went mostly under the radar, thus the Fathers "covered his nakedness" any time an unorthodox belief he held to came up.

Quote
Can you reach Theosis harboring a heretical belief???

Good question, and I honestly don't claim to know for sure. There is an idea in some of the Fathers that (true) knowledge must proceed (true) faith. On the other hand, the Church has obviously recognized the sanctity of people like Gregory of Nyssa, Ireneaus, etc., who may have made mistakes along the lines of what you are asking about.
« Last Edit: January 02, 2009, 12:41:25 AM by Asteriktos »

Offline NorthernPines

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Re: Will God take us to task regarding heretical beliefs???
« Reply #6 on: January 02, 2009, 01:55:45 PM »
St. Isaac the Syrian was near Nestorian in his Christololgy.  St. Gregory of Nyssa was downright wrong when he, like Origen, posited a universal salvation, even for Satan! 

I thought St. Gregory said it's "possible" for even Satan to be saved, not that he MUST be saved (Origen's stance?) Am I wrong in what their positions actually were? (I haven't read either of them a lot, only repeating what has been explained to me)

Not trying to derail the thread just trying to clarify...did St. Gregory say God in the end must save all, or simply that He might/could if He so chooses to do so, and it doesn't hinder free will?


« Last Edit: January 02, 2009, 01:56:27 PM by NorthernPines »

Offline Symeon

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Re: Will God take us to task regarding heretical beliefs???
« Reply #7 on: January 02, 2009, 01:59:05 PM »
On the subject of St. Gregory and apokatastasis, see Chapter 8 of Metropolitan Hierotheos Vlachos' "Life After Death" here.

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Re: Will God take us to task regarding heretical beliefs???
« Reply #8 on: January 02, 2009, 09:47:10 PM »
We've also discussed the subject of apokatastasis here on OC.net.  You might do a search on this term to see what you can find.
« Last Edit: January 02, 2009, 09:47:19 PM by PeterTheAleut »
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Offline SolEX01

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Re: Will God take us to task regarding heretical beliefs???
« Reply #9 on: January 02, 2009, 11:26:14 PM »
I added the apokatastasis tag - linking to 4 threads on the topic.   :)

Online PeterTheAleut

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Re: Will God take us to task regarding heretical beliefs???
« Reply #10 on: January 03, 2009, 02:03:47 AM »
I added the apokatastasis tag - linking to 4 threads on the topic.   :)
Cool! 8)  Thank you.
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Offline SolEX01

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Re: Will God take us to task regarding heretical beliefs???
« Reply #11 on: January 03, 2009, 02:09:41 AM »
You're welcome.   8)

Offline NorthernPines

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Re: Will God take us to task regarding heretical beliefs???
« Reply #12 on: January 03, 2009, 03:42:20 PM »
Thanks from me too! :)