Author Topic: Are the Teachings of Jesus important with Orthodox?  (Read 1693 times)

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Offline David 2007

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Are the Teachings of Jesus important with Orthodox?
« on: December 19, 2010, 05:43:34 AM »
Hi Guys,

Please don't think I'm trolling. The Reason I ask this, is from my experience (A lot of it online) protestant Christians could care less about Jesus' teachings in the Gospel.

I don't want to generalise, but must of the time I would come away with that Jesus was a human Sacrifice, and that's it.

Then most of the Gospels are ignored, and the teachings come from Paul and occasionaly Old Testament.

When I was a child, I would read the New Testament a lot, and take to heart the words of Jesus in the Gospels.

When I went Catholic School, I was shocked at how un-Christian most Catholics behaved. (That I was around).

Then over the last few years and my searching for that 'experience I had when a child', to my dismay there were very few followers of Jesus' Gospel Teachings.

I am unfamiliar with how EO approaches Jesus and his teachings?

Are they important?

Offline Basil 320

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Re: Are the Teachings of Jesus important with Orthodox?
« Reply #1 on: December 19, 2010, 09:10:13 AM »
The Eastern Orthodox Christian Church considers all the teachings of Jesus very important.  The extent to which its faithful follow them, is another matter, but the doctrine, traditions, and practices of the Orthodox Church are all based on the teachings of our Lord.
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Offline HandmaidenofGod

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Re: Are the Teachings of Jesus important with Orthodox?
« Reply #2 on: December 19, 2010, 10:50:38 AM »
Considering that there is assigned Gospel reading for every day of the year (with an additional Epistle reading), I would say "Absolutely!"

Furthermore, in the Slavic tradition, the Beatitudes are sung at every Divine Liturgy, further stressing the importance of Christ's words.  While each Orthodox Christian struggles to become like Christ, the process of theosis, the become like God, is our ultimate goal.
"For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, says the LORD, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope." Jer 29:11

Offline theistgal

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Re: Are the Teachings of Jesus important with Orthodox?
« Reply #3 on: December 19, 2010, 12:29:10 PM »
Also, I would caution you not to judge the religion (Christianity) by its followers. Remember that even one of the first Apostles was a thief and betrayer - and he was handpicked by Christ!

Keep your focus on Christ and on following Him.
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Offline Alpo

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Re: Are the Teachings of Jesus important with Orthodox?
« Reply #4 on: December 19, 2010, 01:21:45 PM »
Furthermore, in the Slavic tradition, the Beatitudes are sung at every Divine Liturgy, further stressing the importance of Christ's words. 

Huh? They are not sung in non-Slavic churches?
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Offline CRCulver

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Re: Are the Teachings of Jesus important with Orthodox?
« Reply #5 on: December 19, 2010, 01:25:18 PM »
Huh? They are not sung in non-Slavic churches?

No.

Offline Alpo

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Re: Are the Teachings of Jesus important with Orthodox?
« Reply #6 on: December 19, 2010, 01:55:41 PM »
Huh? They are not sung in non-Slavic churches?

No.

Why is that? Which was the original practice? Have Greeks, Arabs and Georgians dropped it or have Slavs and Finns adopted it?
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Offline HandmaidenofGod

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Re: Are the Teachings of Jesus important with Orthodox?
« Reply #7 on: December 19, 2010, 02:48:31 PM »
Huh? They are not sung in non-Slavic churches?

No.

Why is that? Which was the original practice? Have Greeks, Arabs and Georgians dropped it or have Slavs and Finns adopted it?

I know it was a practice that was developed by the Slavs later on, but I'm not sure when.

If you examine the Liturgical practices of the different groups you will see that each have their own unique small little quirks and traditions that make them special, but nothing so big that it separates them from the rest of the faith.

For example, in Greek churches it is common for the priest to hand out antidoran as the parishioners exit, and in Slavic parishes, they venerate the cross. Does this make one group holier than the other or more Orthodox than the other? No. It's just a cultural difference that does not affect the theology of the faith.
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Offline ialmisry

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Re: Are the Teachings of Jesus important with Orthodox?
« Reply #8 on: December 19, 2010, 03:42:08 PM »
Furthermore, in the Slavic tradition, the Beatitudes are sung at every Divine Liturgy, further stressing the importance of Christ's words. 

Huh? They are not sung in non-Slavic churches?
no. I miss the psalms and beatitudes sung in the Slavic Churches.  Greeks and Arabs just sing refrains.
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Offline Iconodule

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Re: Are the Teachings of Jesus important with Orthodox?
« Reply #9 on: December 19, 2010, 03:54:35 PM »
Furthermore, in the Slavic tradition, the Beatitudes are sung at every Divine Liturgy, further stressing the importance of Christ's words. 

Huh? They are not sung in non-Slavic churches?
no. I miss the psalms and beatitudes sung in the Slavic Churches.  Greeks and Arabs just sing refrains.

Is this universally the case? I have at least one recording of the Divine Liturgy in Greek where the the psalms (the full versions) and beatitudes are sung for the antiphons (the recording is by Lycourgos Angelopoulos and the Greek Byzantine Choir.)

Offline genesisone

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Re: Are the Teachings of Jesus important with Orthodox?
« Reply #10 on: December 19, 2010, 04:15:40 PM »
Furthermore, in the Slavic tradition, the Beatitudes are sung at every Divine Liturgy, further stressing the importance of Christ's words. 

Huh? They are not sung in non-Slavic churches?
no. I miss the psalms and beatitudes sung in the Slavic Churches.  Greeks and Arabs just sing refrains.
Beatitudes are sung during Lent in the Liturgy of Presanctified Gifts. Possibly elsewhere as well. My own experience is limited in our small mission parish where we simply don't have the resources to do a full range of services.

Offline Ortho_cat

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Re: Are the Teachings of Jesus important with Orthodox?
« Reply #11 on: December 19, 2010, 04:17:07 PM »
We sing the beatitudes every sunday and we follow the antiochian tradition...

Offline augustin717

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Re: Are the Teachings of Jesus important with Orthodox?
« Reply #12 on: December 19, 2010, 05:20:03 PM »
Furthermore, in the Slavic tradition, the Beatitudes are sung at every Divine Liturgy, further stressing the importance of Christ's words. 

Huh? They are not sung in non-Slavic churches?
no. I miss the psalms and beatitudes sung in the Slavic Churches.  Greeks and Arabs just sing refrains.
Beatitudes are sung during Lent in the Liturgy of Presanctified Gifts. Possibly elsewhere as well. My own experience is limited in our small mission parish where we simply don't have the resources to do a full range of services.
i don't think they are sung during the Presanctified; they properly belong to the office of Typika/Obednita, from where they "crept" into the Liturgy.
They are also sung at burials.

Offline Alpo

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Re: Are the Teachings of Jesus important with Orthodox?
« Reply #13 on: December 19, 2010, 05:40:20 PM »
Does this make one group holier than the other or more Orthodox than the other? No. It's just a cultural difference that does not affect the theology of the faith.

I understand this. :) It's just some of us don't live in the midst of jurisdictional mess so we don't know much about different practises than our own. I've basically assumed that besides different kind of chants and abbrevations Byzantine rite is similar in every local church. Apparently there's more variation than I've thought.
« Last Edit: December 19, 2010, 05:41:16 PM by Alpo »
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Offline Anastasios

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Re: Are the Teachings of Jesus important with Orthodox?
« Reply #14 on: December 19, 2010, 05:47:30 PM »
Furthermore, in the Slavic tradition, the Beatitudes are sung at every Divine Liturgy, further stressing the importance of Christ's words. 

Huh? They are not sung in non-Slavic churches?
no. I miss the psalms and beatitudes sung in the Slavic Churches.  Greeks and Arabs just sing refrains.

Is this universally the case? I have at least one recording of the Divine Liturgy in Greek where the the psalms (the full versions) and beatitudes are sung for the antiphons (the recording is by Lycourgos Angelopoulos and the Greek Byzantine Choir.)

We use the Psalms and Beatitudes in my missions exclusively on Sundays.  I noticed that normally we use the antiphons with refrains in the Cathedral in NY, but on some occasions we chant the Psalms and Beatitudes there, too. St. Anthony's Monastery has the texts in both Byzantine and Western notation on their website, and that is what I use (or try to use, given that we are not always fully staffed!)
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Offline Iconodule

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Re: Are the Teachings of Jesus important with Orthodox?
« Reply #15 on: December 19, 2010, 05:49:38 PM »
Furthermore, in the Slavic tradition, the Beatitudes are sung at every Divine Liturgy, further stressing the importance of Christ's words. 

Huh? They are not sung in non-Slavic churches?
no. I miss the psalms and beatitudes sung in the Slavic Churches.  Greeks and Arabs just sing refrains.

Is this universally the case? I have at least one recording of the Divine Liturgy in Greek where the the psalms (the full versions) and beatitudes are sung for the antiphons (the recording is by Lycourgos Angelopoulos and the Greek Byzantine Choir.)

We use the Psalms and Beatitudes in my missions exclusively on Sundays.  I noticed that normally we use the antiphons with refrains in the Cathedral in NY, but on some occasions we chant the Psalms and Beatitudes there, too. St. Anthony's Monastery has the texts in both Byzantine and Western notation on their website, and that is what I use (or try to use, given that we are not always fully staffed!)

Yeah I noticed that St. Anthony's had these texts to be chanted during the DL, so I know it's not unheard of. What exactly determines whether you use the psalms or the refrains?

Offline David 2007

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Re: Are the Teachings of Jesus important with Orthodox?
« Reply #16 on: December 19, 2010, 09:49:33 PM »
Considering that there is assigned Gospel reading for every day of the year (with an additional Epistle reading), I would say "Absolutely!"

Furthermore, in the Slavic tradition, the Beatitudes are sung at every Divine Liturgy, further stressing the importance of Christ's words.  While each Orthodox Christian struggles to become like Christ, the process of theosis, the become like God, is our ultimate goal.

Wow, I'd love to witness that.

Someone should put it on Youtube.

Offline David 2007

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Re: Are the Teachings of Jesus important with Orthodox?
« Reply #17 on: December 19, 2010, 09:50:20 PM »
Also, I would caution you not to judge the religion (Christianity) by its followers. Remember that even one of the first Apostles was a thief and betrayer - and he was handpicked by Christ!

Keep your focus on Christ and on following Him.

Sound advice.

Unfortunately as a young person I didn't have that advice or a guide or a teacher. :(


Offline genesisone

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Re: Are the Teachings of Jesus important with Orthodox?
« Reply #18 on: December 19, 2010, 10:26:25 PM »
Furthermore, in the Slavic tradition, the Beatitudes are sung at every Divine Liturgy, further stressing the importance of Christ's words. 

Huh? They are not sung in non-Slavic churches?
no. I miss the psalms and beatitudes sung in the Slavic Churches.  Greeks and Arabs just sing refrains.
Beatitudes are sung during Lent in the Liturgy of Presanctified Gifts. Possibly elsewhere as well. My own experience is limited in our small mission parish where we simply don't have the resources to do a full range of services.
i don't think they are sung during the Presanctified; they properly belong to the office of Typika/Obednita, from where they "crept" into the Liturgy.
They are also sung at burials.
Yes, what you describe is more accurate. We rarely do Typika (except as a Reader's Service when our priest is away) other than in connection with the LPSG, so I simply make that association.

Offline HandmaidenofGod

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Re: Are the Teachings of Jesus important with Orthodox?
« Reply #19 on: December 19, 2010, 11:25:49 PM »
Wow, I'd love to witness that.

Someone should put it on Youtube.

Here you go:

English (Not the best choir in the world, but God bless them!)

Church Slavonic

Greek (The Beatitudes start at 1:56)
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Offline NorthernPines

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Re: Are the Teachings of Jesus important with Orthodox?
« Reply #20 on: December 20, 2010, 12:03:04 AM »
Furthermore, in the Slavic tradition, the Beatitudes are sung at every Divine Liturgy, further stressing the importance of Christ's words. 

Huh? They are not sung in non-Slavic churches?
no. I miss the psalms and beatitudes sung in the Slavic Churches.  Greeks and Arabs just sing refrains.

Is this universally the case? I have at least one recording of the Divine Liturgy in Greek where the the psalms (the full versions) and beatitudes are sung for the antiphons (the recording is by Lycourgos Angelopoulos and the Greek Byzantine Choir.)


No, it is not universally the case. Angelopoulos follows the Athonite tradition which still chants the beatitudes. I believe the Patriarchate also chants them, except on feast days when the refrains are done. Musical rubrics is a complex issue but it is not universal around the world. But pretty much in the US this is going to be the case, though some priests even in the GOA have considered reviving the beatitudes in places where the Bishop has said such a practice is acceptable. My parish has contemplated it but still hasn't done it because it might add 90 seconds to the Liturgy and that would tick off too many people...lol!

Now back on topic...

Offline Basil 320

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Re: Are the Teachings of Jesus important with Orthodox?
« Reply #21 on: December 20, 2010, 01:14:40 AM »
There are two Typicons is use by the Holy Orthodox Churches today.  The Typicon is issued annually by each of the Holy Orthodox Churches and provides the guidance as to the readings and hymns of the day, the appropriate service for the day, among other guidance.

Near the end of the 19th century, the Ecumenical Patriarchate revised the Typicon that was commonly used since the Middle Ages, and emanated from the Jerusalem Patriarchate.  Except for the Patriarchate of Jerusalem, the Greek churches, which included the Ancient Patriarchate of Antioch at the time, adopted the Typicon revised by the Ecumenical Patriarchate.  The other Orthodox Churches have not adopted this revised Typicon.  The Antiochian O.C. Archdiocese of North America, while essentially following the revised Typicon, retains remnants of Slavic practices because some of their parishes were originally affiliated with the Russian Archdiocese of North America (the OCA predecessor) in the first two decades of the 20th century.
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Offline Xenia

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Re: Are the Teachings of Jesus important with Orthodox?
« Reply #22 on: December 20, 2010, 02:20:04 AM »
Back to the OP,  I understand what the poster is saying.  My experience with evangelical churches was that the words and teachings of Jesus somehow did not apply to us today, that they belonged to a different dispensation.  Sermons on the Beatitudes,  for example,  were often peppered with "Of course, no one can really live this way," with the implication that it was futile to even try, and maybe even a little legalistic to make the effort.  They preferred to read the writings of St. Paul. 

In my experience there are Jesus-oriented churches and St. Paul-oriented churches.  I think I can safely say that Eastern Orthodoxy is Jesus-centered,  while still believing and respecting the writings of St. Paul.  My experience suggests that many evangelical churches are St. Paul-oriented.

Just what I have observed.

Offline David 2007

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Re: Are the Teachings of Jesus important with Orthodox?
« Reply #23 on: December 20, 2010, 10:25:01 AM »
Wow, I'd love to witness that.

Someone should put it on Youtube.

Here you go:

English (Not the best choir in the world, but God bless them!)

Church Slavonic

Greek (The Beatitudes start at 1:56)


Thank you.

Offline David 2007

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Re: Are the Teachings of Jesus important with Orthodox?
« Reply #24 on: December 20, 2010, 10:25:39 AM »
Back to the OP,  I understand what the poster is saying.  My experience with evangelical churches was that the words and teachings of Jesus somehow did not apply to us today, that they belonged to a different dispensation.  Sermons on the Beatitudes,  for example,  were often peppered with "Of course, no one can really live this way," with the implication that it was futile to even try, and maybe even a little legalistic to make the effort.  They preferred to read the writings of St. Paul. 

In my experience there are Jesus-oriented churches and St. Paul-oriented churches.  I think I can safely say that Eastern Orthodoxy is Jesus-centered,  while still believing and respecting the writings of St. Paul.  My experience suggests that many evangelical churches are St. Paul-oriented.

Just what I have observed.

Thanks. yes this is exactly what I mean.

I feel heartened that EO is not like this!